Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Keep It Coming

It's pretty amazing to think that only a few states have voted for presidential candidates so far this year. Next Tuesday we will have 20 states voting on the same day. That still will only amount to a little over half the states in the U.S. I think we should let the election drag on and wait a little longer to make those assumptions on who's winning. But then I'm not the press. I'm just your average American. Since when does my opinion count?

Yesterday was Florida's vote. McCain won despite embarrassing himself with a misquote of Romney that he refuses to back down on. And despite the fact that McCain knows almost nothing about the economy. Romney came in next, however, proving that he is still doing better than anyone else (I think). Ron Paul received 62,000 votes, but in Florida that amounted to 3%. Not that he was counting on Florida. Oh, and goodbye Rudy!

On the Democrat side it doesn't really matter because the DNC took Florida's delegates. I'll report the numbers anyway. We have flip-flopped again. Clinton soundly beat Obama. Obama should announce it's because of all those old people. Don't you think? "Well, I never had a chance in a state with a lot of old people." As for Edwards, when is he going to stop wasting his money and get out of the race?

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Some Things Never Change

. . . George W. Bush is one of them. I watched the State of the Union Address for the first time in several years yesterday evening. Most years I just read it afterwards. This being President Bush's last year I decided to watch him give his speech one more time. There were a few solid moments of the speech where I would have been standing and applauding. But most of it was all about spending more of my tax dollars on more wasteful Federal programs. He did throw in a nice tribute to balancing the budget at the beginning. He even laughed when he told Congress that he was not going to approve an unbalanced budget this year.

Bush is taking that veto pen very seriously these days. He had to ease into this whole presidency thing. So, about his 6th year he decided he could try vetoing something. I guess he ended up enjoying the veto so much that he can't put the pen down now.

I have to admit I prefer watching a Bush State of the Union Address to a Clinton one. Why is that? Bush may make errors in words and sentences (not yesterday), but he doesn't keep talking for two hours. Nor does he insert all kinds of sickening, flowery language in his speech. He just says what he means. If that makes me doze off, well, at least it's better than feeling like I want to go vomit.

It was actually funny watching the speech last night. GWB was having such a wonderful time giving his last State of the Union Address. He looked so comfortable standing up there. He seems to have stopped caring about the criticism we as a country focus on him. On one hand, that's not good. But on the other hand, I do have to feel some respect for the guy. He took the job of president and he's definitely one of the most hated presidents in his time. Still, he never gives up on his decisions. I can't get behind all the spending or wars of regime change. But I have to admire his unapologetic perseverance. I have to admire his resolve. I really have to admire his ability to finish the speech in only one hour . . .

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Inventing Slurs

I wish people would stop creating new racial slurs and labels of a negative sort. I mean, you never really know when you're going to end up saying something totally insensitive anymore. Maybe we should take the route of George Orwell's 1984 and start shrinking the language instead of coming up with new meanings for words. He tried to make a good point with that whole idea, but I really think he missed something.

Back And Forth

Yesterday South Carolina held its Democratic primary. Obama came in ahead of Hillary by nearly 30 points. Edwards should just quit. His own state would not elect him for prez. The race continues its chaotic spiral. What will happen next? What will Hillary do? Whatever she does, it won't be pretty . . .

Friday, January 25, 2008

My Annual "I Don't Get The Oscars" Post

Yes, the nominations are in for the Oscars. As usual I have only seen one of the movies nominated for Best Picture and Best Director. That would be Juno. It's very good. Somehow I don't think it deserves Best Picture, despite the fact that it's the best movie I've seen all year. Of the other movies nominated for that award none of them were popular at all. I think I'd be interested in seeing There Will Be Blood. But the others don't sound up my alley. As for best actor, well, I'm glad Viggo Mortensen finally got a nomination. I doubt he will win, but that's okay. He should get some more roles and that's all I'd like to see from him. I hope to see Ellen Page take Best Actress home with her. She was amazing in Juno.

Of course, the movies that I actually watched mainly received technical nominations. Those would be Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Ratatouille, Transformers and 3:10 to Yuma. Speaking of which, I am very disappointed that none of the actors in Yuma were nominated for Oscars. That movie was incredible. I plan to buy it, soon. It's so sad that Westerns have lost their place as notable movies anymore. At least the '90s are over. The only Oscar nominated films in the '90s were crappy, message flicks that bored me to tears. I mean, at least I can say that a few movies on the Oscar Nominations list interest me rather than that I do not want to see any of them ever. That's a little bit better than things used to be.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Confusion, Er, Election Continues

Nevada: Romney won by a lot. Ron Paul came in second! It's not much more decisive than Romney winning Wyoming, however, because hardly anyone showed up to the caucuses. At least, that's my opinion. The Republican Party still appears confused.

As for the Democrats, Clinton is in the lead. I'm really not sure why the recent Clinton camp shenanigans haven't turned voters completely off toward Hillary. I mean, really, I don't consider Obama to be the nice guy either (considering his tactics in Illinois elections), but something is definitely going on with the Clinton campaign. Ever since that one time Obama did better than Hillary it's been scary. Doesn't this jog a few memories of the last Clinton White House? Why do we want that again?

South Carolina: This was a much more decisive victory for McCain. Still not sure if that makes him the front runner. It probably puts him equal with Romney. As for Ron Paul, he came in ahead of Giuliani, at least.

On the Democrats side we will not find out until Jan. 26th because they have a different primary date for each party.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

To Sing To The Whole World

I have spent the last two years unable to watch my one addiction: American Idol. Yes, I love that show. No, I don't know why. Simon is my favorite of the judges because I nearly always agree with him (but I would not say things the way he does). Randy and Paula are fun too because they're a lot more enthusiastic and normal than Simon. They definitely ground the show.

Yesterday's show was 2 hours long and I almost quit watching it. But they kept teasing me at the commercial breaks with an upcoming contestant. He was a guy in a costume. When they finally brought him out (the last 7 minutes of the show) I thought, "I've waited this long, this had better be good." Boy, was it. Here it is for your viewing enjoyment. Watch him as he "sings free of charge" "to the whole world." The greatest 7 minutes in American Idol history as far as I am concerned.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


The results of the primaries continue to prove that the Republican party is a mess. Huckabee, McCain and Romney have now all been first in the first three primary/caucus states. Actually, Romney came in first in Wyoming, so he has done better than the other three.

As for Ron Paul, he did really well in Michigan. He totally beat Giuliani and Thompson. We're talking more than double the votes Rudy got and almost double the votes Thompson received.

Word has it that Michigan Dems are not satisfied either. That's probably because the DNC refused to acknowledge the primary when MI moved it up. Take that MI (my home state) for forcing Iowa to move its caucuses up so they infringed on the holidays.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Crisis of Faith

There's something about being young and involved in politics that you can never get back once you've passed the age of 25. The enthusiasm I felt when I was in highschool and much of college has flown away on the winds of time. I look at kids these days, the ones who are into politics, and I wonder where they get their passion. I know I don't feel that strongly about political involvement anymore.

I have done a lot of work this past year for Dr. Paul, but it was very much head oriented rather than heart. In my head I know we should not be this in debt as a country. I do not want government funded health care. I think that redistribution of wealth is immoral. I consider the Iraq War to be too similar to the Clinton era "world police" position of the U.S. The store of arguments I have about my political ideas are almost solely intellectual and come from years of study. Did you know I did far more to get George W. Bush elected then I did to get Ron Paul the nomination? I am neither proud nor ashamed of this fact. It happened. George W. Bush will always hold that special place of being my favorite political candidate of all time. It's not that I think he's done a great job. I simply no longer have the same sense of devotion as I had for my party and my party leader during his first campaign for president. I can look at GWB and see the things he has done wrong. But I also see something else.

I see a kid with a lot of hopes and dreams wanting to do everything in her power to elect the person she thought was the best. I see a rally with a thousand people pushing me up against a stage while I reached up to shake the hand of the man I knew would win the presidency and do his best for my country. This is why I cannot hate Bush, why I never will. His 2000 race for the presidency was the funnest political moment of my life. I was motivated to pass out literature, call people, go to rallies (2, in fact) and talk about my beliefs -- which weren't very developed -- nonstop.

Is it any wonder that I have wanted to leave the Republican Party for the last four years? I just don't feel into it anymore. I want to help make government better. But I don't feel purposeful like I once did. Perhaps it's all just a maturation process. We grow older, we don't care about the things we cared about when we were young. I am still very interested in politics, I am just not caught up in them anymore. This might be a good thing. Now I can finally remove myself back from my own arguments and consider whether they are logical or not. Still, it makes me feel lost. To remember the way I once was and wonder why I have no motivation anymore is difficult. What changed me? Was it just growing older? Or was it realizing that I don't know everything? I don't know what's best for the country and I even picked a candidate to support who wasn't what's best. Is it just that I have learned to doubt myself?

If I had the answer I would give it. As it is, I now understand that I can only get anywhere by motivating myself. It's hard work to take the steps in life which I think are necessary for me. I have always been proud of my ability to self-motivate. But I think much of that was based on my somewhat irrational, youthful drive to make my dreams come true. So, I guess I have work to do. And no, this whole rant does not pertain only to politics.

Friday, January 11, 2008

I'm Only Going To Say This Once

I have said this many, many times both to myself and to a few close friends: Never trust someone who is too open the first time you meet him or her. Run away.

For some strange reason I cannot seem to take my own advice no matter how sound it proves itself to be. This particular bit of wisdom has proven true countless times for me. A year ago I was stuck in a cubicle with the most horrible person I have ever met and I had to work with her. I started out, three months earlier, as her friend. But she was far too open a person. She told me most of her life story and medical history in the first 5 minutes of meeting her. She seemed funny and fun-loving. So I ignored my qualms about how much information she gave and tried to befriend her. Little did I know that in only one month I would be hiding in the bathroom every chance I got just to have some peace. Of course, the bathroom being one with stalls that you have to come out of when someone else needs them she would find me in there. And if she found me in there she would take that as an opportunity to start a fight. My workplace was not safe for me anymore and people even started to mock me behind my back. Apparently I was weird because I had a colored frog toy that shone with pretty lights when you squeezed him. He sat on my desk. Soon the whole company knew about my toy frog. I also got in trouble with said person for "yelling" at her. Now, if you have ever met me then you know I cannot actually raise my voice to a yelling level. But, yes, I did tell my co-worker that she was disrespectful and unprofessional. I believe I used the phrase, "There is a line and you crossed it," once as well. I tried to get her to understand that getting her work done was the most important thing. It did not go over well.

Sadly, that was not the last time I disobeyed my own admonishment. I have done it again! I am not going to tell the story, because it would be unprofessional and disrespectful to do so at this point. But I want my audience to remember my words. You cannot trust people who give too much away at the first hello. If you want to try to be friends with them do so at your own peril. Even if the person turns out to be nice (and many of this type of people do turn out to be nice) he or she will inevitably abuse your friendship. The person who is careless with the things that are dear to her is even more careless with the things that are dear to other people. Friend is a title to be earned, not bestowed. Do not give in to the temptation to call someone your friend before the "getting to know you" portion of the relationship is over. Especially if the person starts referring to you as his or her "friend." That early into the relationship it's just not appropriate to bring up the f-word.

I am reminded of an episode of Seinfeld in which Jerry's new friend asks Jerry to help him move to a new house. Jerry goes on a long rant about how he does not feel that the relationship has reached a point where the other guy can ask Jerry such a thing. It's supposed to be funny, but it is so not funny when you have something like that happen to you. So watch out.

Oh, and if you're reading this then I'm not talking about you.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Ah, Logic #14

The media gets it wrong all the time. This presidential primary race is solid proof of that fact. I totally wish the media would stick to reporting and analyzing and get out of the business of predicting. It takes real research and education to predict. Yes, that means more than the research and education necessary to report what's happening.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

He's My Candidate

. . . and he was on Jay Leno Monday night. Enjoy the show.

Heartless Tease

Three trans-dimensional beings with no "prime directive." Abandoned U.S. military bases transformed into nuclear power plants. One third world, totalitarian dictator who wants to live forever. The total devaluation of the U.S. dollar. A band of civilians trying to establish an underground currency.

What do all those things have in common?

NaNo 2008.

A story of ______ and betrayal!

I Was Right

Ron Paul did do better in New Hampshire, by about 7,000 votes. Percentage wise he did not do better because he had 8% in NH and 10% in Iowa. No small feat. Especially since he beat another top tier candidate by a heck of a lot of votes -- this time it was Thompson.

As for the rest, I remember distinctly saying NOT Hillary. Why don't people listen to me?

Saturday, January 05, 2008

What An American Wants

Iowa's voting has told me one thing. One thing that I already knew. We want something different in a government than what we have and we're going to use our voting power to get it. I think what we Americans really want is optimism. Optimism and NOT Hillary.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Comments Available

You can now comment on my blog using the OpenID option. That means that as long as you have a blog, you can post a comment. If I start getting anonymous annoyances again I will have to go back to google accounts only.

Caucus Impressions

There is much I could say about the Iowa caucus experience. I am not really sure where to begin. A caucus is like a huge Party meeting without the formalities and familiar faces. Since most of my readers have probably never attended a meeting for their political party my description is useless. I'll start from the beginning.

I arrived at about 6:20pm at the caucus location along with my husband. We started to walk inside only to discover Hillary and Obama signs. Democrats were everywhere. A few questions later we learned that the Republicans were meeting on the other side of the building. We found our way into our meeting room and registered. Craig went to make signs directing people on where to go because most people -- Dems and GOPs included -- were confused. I put on my Ron Paul button, stuck a Ron Paul sign on the wall and sat down waiting to see if anyone would approach me. Several people did. Most of them thought that the Ron Paul campaign had sent me over and wanted to know if I could help the chairperson get people registered. I explained that I was a caucus voter just like them and a volunteer for the campaign in my own precinct. I talked for quite a while to a lovely, elderly woman who supported Ron Paul. I met a few other Ron Paul fans. It was great.

At a few minutes after 7pm the meeting began. The first order of business was electing a secretary to help the chairperson. I volunteered because it meant I would be able to make sure nothing bad happened to the votes. No one objected to me being the secretary.

Thus followed a lengthy period of standing on a hard floor in very high heels. My feet still hurt. We had a series of short speeches for each candidate. My husband gave a speech for Ron Paul and it was very well spoken. I passed out voting ballots. Then I collected them making sure that each person turned in only one ballot. I counted votes along with a representative from each of the campaigns. A little over half the people left the room at that point, not caring to stay for the rest of the meeting. We selected precinct delegates. I decided to be a delegate. Then I got all of us delegates and alternates signed up while the chairperson called in the vote, supervised by the representatives of each candidate. The last order of business was to choose important issues to go to the Platform Committee. Oh yeah, and choose a representative to the Platform Committee.

That's when my true party animal nature came out. I could not help myself. A few months ago I vowed to avoid the Iowa GOP at all costs. But now, I am one of them. I volunteered to represent my precinct to the Platform Committee. Part of the reason I decided to do this was, well, I need more responsibility or I'll continue to be a bum this year. Another part is that I really do not appreciate the recent turns the Republican Party has taken. I have not done much good as an independent. I think I am going to try changing the party from the inside out instead of standing to one side aloof and mysterious about my views. I now know of a candidate who champions my own political ideas for this country. Even if he does not make it to the nomination, I can still take his ideas and insidiously work them into the party structure. Wait, I am giving away my hand. Perhaps I should not say anymore about this . . . Then again, perhaps I should. Perhaps I will, at the Platform Committee meeting.

After all that Craig and I went to the Ron Paul post caucus party and hung out with fellow volunteers. It was fun. Ron Paul showed up and made an excellent speech. He gives me hope for America. And even if he does not win the nomination I am thankful that I got to be a part of this movement.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Announcing For 2007

It's time for the most exciting blog event of the year. At least, the most exciting blog event on this blog. I am about to announce the 2007 Neville Chamberlain Award. You can check out '05 and '06 if you've a mind.

Before I announce the award I would like to share a little about why I do this every year. I choose, each year, to celebrate the good things in life. That culminates in Christmas and New Year celebrations. However, I cannot help but notice some of the cowardly things that happen throughout the year. Some of the things that people do are just downright spineless. They should be celebrated too. I do this by highlighting the most spineless act of appeasement committed over the past year. Now, this includes the international political spectrum. Naturally, you want to know what the receiver of the award gets. I would say nothing. Nothing but the sound of my lack of respect and the knowledge that he, she or they did something incredibly cowardly.

This past year was a tough one to come up with a recipient for. Hence the late post. I spent a lot of time thinking. In the end I discovered that I was going to have to give the award to a most undeserving recipient. The most spineless act of appeasement which I could think of was entirely unoriginal. It's actually a cop out. Neville -- my holiday monkey who was contracted to give the award each year -- would only allow me to take his picture while he was thumbing his nose. That's how lame the act that garnered the 2007 Neville Chamberlain Award really is. Not much I can do, you know. Without further ado, I would like to announce that the 2007 Neville Chamberlain Award shall be given to:

Harry Reid.

For the infamous "Harry Reid Rush Limbaugh smear letter." Incidentally, anyone who signed that letter gets the NC award as well. As the story goes, Rush (of whom I am not really a fan, but that's irrelevant) made some disparaging comments about a man who claimed to have been a soldier in Iraq, but who really had been booted out of boot camp. The media took offense and began calling for Rush to resign etc. ad nauseum. People got upset. The long story shortens to Harry Reid writing a letter to ask Rush's network to dump his show.

Basically, Harry Reid caved to the media and general populace pressures on the Democratic Congress to do something. That's why the rest of the country voted the Dems in anyway, right? So they would do something to oppose conservatives. Something to limit free speech. You know. The only thing Reid managed to do was write this stupid letter and get some of his buddies to sign it. Not much of an appeasement. Any other year I would say Senator Reid should get an honorable mention. This year, I am lacking in good candidates for the award. So, here you go, Mr. Reid. *sound of a whoopy cushion*