Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricane Sandy and the Tea Party

As I write this, it has been raining here in Philadelphia since late afternoon yesterday (Sunday) due to the effects of Hurricane Sandy.  Our area has received 1.5 inches of rain so far (some of the surrounding areas have received as much as 4.5 inches), and we're seeing costal flooding and storm damage along the Jersey shore.  All of this while Hurricane Sandy is still 350 off the coast.  I'm writing this post from home since my place of employment is closed due to the storm.  The power is still on in my apartment, and personally I don't really expect to lose it for the duration of the storm.  And as my section of the city has not been ordered to evacuate, and not likely to be so ordered, I intend to heed the official advice and stay home.  I'm writing this in my jammies, with an ample supply of food and water, a flashlight in case I actually do lose power, my trusty I-Pad with 3g so I'll still have access to the internet, and plenty of porn.  (I just wrote that last part to see if you were paying attnetion.)  Although a category 1 storm, Hurricane Sandy is expected to do a lot of damage where it hits simply because it's a slow moving storm.  Flooding, power disruption, and wind damage are all to be expected along Sandy's path.  Here is where the Tea-Party's anti-Government philosophy clashes with the reality that they work so hard to deny. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Final Debate. Winner: Obama (Shhh! Don't Tell the GOP)

You can look at polls.  You can listen to pundits.  You can watch the news.  But, in my opinion, the best way to tell if your guy has won a debate...just watch  the other guy's supporters.

More on that later.  As for the debate itself, the topic was right up the President's alley; Foreign Policy.  Still and all, I couldn't help but feel a sense of dread in the moments before the debate.  Yes, Biden laid out the ground work for Obama's debate strategy.  Yes, Obama had a strong second outing.  But I couldn't help thinking about that horrible first debate.  One more like that and we could very well be inaugurating President Romney come January.  Happily, as it turns out, I needn't have worried.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


The day after the first presidential debate, Obama went on the campaign trail and lamented how he encountered a "different" Mitt Romney than the one who campaigned during the primaries.  He was attempting to imply (clumsily, in my opinion) that this new Romney, and his sudden turn towards the center, was the reason he did so poorly in that debate.  After last night, Obama may want to lend that campaign speech to Mitt Romney, for Romney certainly encountered a "different" President Obama than the one who phoned it in during their first debate.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Debate Two. Winner: Biden, and the Floor He Mopped with Paul Ryan

During the closing statements of Thursday's VP Debate I half-expected Joe Biden to turn and look directly into the camera, addressing all of the nay-sayers who wanted Obama to drop him and make Hillary Clinton his running mate, and yell, "HOW Y'ALL LIKE ME NOW, HATERS!?"

The pundits, which I purposely avoided watching that night, may try to call this race a "draw" because they need the ratings that come from a close contest.  But from I heard and saw (mostly heard, since I was listening on the car radio as I was driving home) Biden was the clear winner.  Biden brought the facts, he brought the fight, and most of all he brought the passion that Obama was missing in his debate.

Monday, October 8, 2012

VP Debate Thought Experiment

Let me ask you something.  How many times have you gone to a movie based on its glowing review only to find that it totally sucked, or perhaps vice versa, reading a bad review but finding that the movie was quite enjoyable?  It's happened to all of us at least once.  And it's not just movies.  We've done it with restaurants, television, music, theater, books, even sports.  Seriously, how many people root for the Dallas Cowboys not because they like them, but because we've been told for the last 20 year's that they're "America's Team"?  How many people fell for the Bush administration's claims that Iraq had "Weapons of Mass Destruction".  Of course we like to think that we're not this maleable, but in reality very few of us are capable of formulate our own opinion on things of importance.  So we ask others for their opinion, and we act based on those opinions.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Debate One. Winner: Romney...For All The WRONG Reasons

Sorry folks, but I just can't sugar coat this.  Romney was the clear winner in last night's debate with President Obama.  Now, with that out of the way, I'm going to tell you why that doesn't really matter.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Voter ID Not About What You Think (Well, maybe it is)

This week we saw yet another effort to block Democratic votes denied, this time in Pennsylvania, where a judge blocked that state's restrictive Voter ID law.  The law would have required voters to produce a state issued ID in order to vote.  As over 700,000 Pennsylvanians do not have such an ID, most of them among constituencies that tend to vote for Democrats (minorities, the poor, students, young people) it's pretty easy to see why Republicans were so eager to shove this law through during a year when we're about to re-elect the first African-American president, and why many of them are so upset that they've been blocked...again.  But sometimes when faced with questions of motivations, gain, or possibly even some Freudian like resentment or denial, one has to dig deeper.  I'm wondering if maybe we're all missing a larger point behind Republican efforts to keep people from voting.