Who says politics can’t be amusing?

Obama a ‘blank screen’ I honesty started laughing upon reading the article and got even more chuckles from the posted comments. It’s a good reminder that what you say can come back and kick you in the pants.

Seriously, though, I wonder at Obama’s inability to handle being confronted by his inadequacies as a potential president, seeming to prefer to chant his fluff filled mantra of “Change We Can Believe In”. Simply dismissing valid points like national security as “fear mongering” makes me wonder if Obama’s possible presidency will take the Ostrich Principle to Governance: bury our heads in the dirt and hope the problems goes away.

McCain’s “I’m a proud conservative, liberal Republican” moment:

Record Number of Americans in Prison

Record Number of Americans in Prison  This is just plain scary to consider that roughly 1% of the population of the US is incarcerated. Part of this problem has arisen from mandatory sentencing laws for relatively minor offenses. Arizona’s mandatory sentencing laws, for example, have resulted in prison sentences for non-violent drug abusers, property crimes, and DUIs. While I fully support criminals being held to account for their crimes, for some cases there are viable (and cheaper) alternatives  to try first before incarceration: electronic tagging, community service, drug and alcohol rehabilitation for substance abusers, mandatory reparations for property crimes, and loss of license and permanent seizure of all vehicles owned by non-fatal or non-injuring DUI offenders are but just a few examples. On other words, better sentencing laws that return common sense and reason to the courts and juries. This is obviously not an easy issue to resolve, but it is one that Americans need to look at seriously and question how and why the situation has arisen.

Can muck have two sides?

Apparently it can. I’m fed up with all the ridiculous attempts to smear candidates or come up with outrageous and inane excuses to invalidate their respective campaigns.

I start with the latest asinine assertion by the Democratic Party:

John McCain Not a US Citizen, therefore ineligible to become President.  I got to love the complete and utter nonsense of this claim by those opposed to McCain. Are these people that pathetic and desperate or are they simply completely and utterly stupid? I betting on the latter on this point. Any US citizen who attended public school should know that the Panama Canal Zone was a territory at the time McCain was born there and thus automatically a U.S. citizen, just like Barry Goldwater was a citizen even though he was born in Arizona when it was a territory. It doesn’t matter if the PCZ was never incorporated into the United States and instead later turned over to Panama.

And from the Republicans:

Barrack Obama is a Muslim. As if someone’s religion automatically makes someone an enemy of the state. Get real. Anyone who subscribes to notion that loyalty to the United States is determined by their religion is a utter moron. Add to the fact that Obama is a Christian and the claim gets downright idiotic. Obama wearing traditional Kenyan (not Somali as erroneously stated by the ill informed) garb is also irrelevant. Hate mongering and pandering only feed into the perception that Americans, and Republicans in particular, are hateful bigots and Christian right wing nut bags.

Knock off the muckraking and let the candidates debate. If you want to attack each other, back it up with facts and positions not innuendo and intentional misinterpretation of our nation’s Constitution and laws. Perhaps I’m too much expecting a measure of intelligence, maturity and decorum to these political campaigns since they all keep claiming to want to be different than past campaigns.

News Commentary 02.28.2008

Exchange Student Starved While in Egypt I feel sorry to see that this young man had such a horrible student exchange experience. Something is definitely up if he came back so skinny. It makes me wonder what AFS is up to. I know in my own student exchange experience there was no discouraging kids from contacting their families and friends while away but maybe that was because I was in a monitored program. But then again, the exchange was part of a push to normalize relations between the USA and the Soviet Union by getting the average people to know one another.

Cleveland Clinkers This is why I love FactCheck.Org and other groups like them. They strip away all the b.s. from all sides and try to get to the simple facts. Too bad more voters don’t read sites like this more often. They wouldn’t be suckered so much.

Boyd Coddington’s  Death  A car building legend passes on.

Wooing Women Gamers I’m not surprised in the least at the number of women playing games. I’m glad to see the number of women getting into the gaming industry growing as well despite concerns of male domination in the industry hindering women’s advances. As far as being a gamer, I guess I’m lucky so far in that playing games I have yet to be harassed by a man resentful that I play a game well.

Clinton camp highlights Obama’s chairmanship What concerns me about this is the fact Mr. Obama had an opportunity to gain some credentials for international policies, in this case the subcommittee on Europe, and chose to ignore the challenge and opportunity aside from two ambassadorial nominations. A President cannot simply ignore international concerns. I can forgive a President candidate lacking experience, but not one who seems to avoid gaining that necessary experience.

5 questions for the future President

These are 5 questions I would love to hear the Presidential candidates answer, though I doubt they will at this time (if ever). Some obviously are of more immediate concern than others.

  1.  What would you do to ensure consumable food crops (wheat, soy, corn, etc.) are not diverted to the production of bio-fuels or are not used as a pretext to charge outrageous prices on foodstuff as result of increasing use of bio-fuels?
  2. Where do you stand on Net Neutrality?
  3. How to you plan to pay off the national debt and/or eliminate the deficit?
  4. How would strengthen political, social, and economic ties with Liberia and other African nations? For that matter any of our allied nations?
  5. Do you support or not support the concept of the unitary executive and, if so, to what extent?

World News Commentary 02.27.2008

Dollar hits records low against Euro This isn’t all a bad thing as some would believe. It makes American exports more lucrative to sell in Europe since they’re cheaper. It also may appeal to cost conscious Europeans to visit the United States on holiday.

Chavez to boot English terms from business I used to get amusement from Chavez’s antics but they’re increasingly boring. I mean really, since it was the US that developed so much of the world’s computer technology, it’s logical that as an English speaking country, English would be applied to the devices. That doesn’t mean other nations have to use the terms in their language. If they chose to do so, then so be it. How Chavez equates that with “cultural imperialism” is beyond me, especially since English is taught in Venezuelan schools. I know it’s just more bluster for a man desperate to divert attention away from his inability to fix Venezuela’s problems with his implementation of socialist and communist principles.

Microsoft fined a record $1.3 billion Well they did defy an EU antitrust order so I can’t feel much sympathy for the company there and have a history of defying government decisions and requirements. International business can be so tricky to understand at times, even for those in that industry. I guess we’ll see where this goes from here.