Monday Morning Potpourri

Hurricane Dean…this is getting pretty scary for the folks in Mexico as it looks like it is picking up. I have a friend who really geeks out over hurricanes, and I’ve been encouraging him to start blogging on them. I know he reads this (sometimes), so I’m calling him out publicly now. START!

Overheard on the radio this morning…
“If Shakespeare, Socrates, and Galileo were alive today they’d all own adult bookstores.”

I also heard an oldie but a goodie…
“Is that possible–to time travel speed?”
–Britney Spears

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My jaw hurts, but that doesn’t make me ugly.

Fox News — Sensationalist?

I just went to our cafeteria here at work to get some coffee and saw this “headline” on Fox News…”Bloggers a Threat?”

To be fair, I (thankfully) couldn’t hear what they were saying, only see the alert they had scrolling across the bottom of the screen. But are these guys serious? I used to think that the whole blogosphere vs. mainstream media thing was sort of a ploy by bloggers to make themselves seem a little more important than they are. Now I’m not so sure.

Even locally and regionally, there have been incidents like this, that show the divide is very real, and the tension is building on both sides.

In general, I think local news outlets do a decent job at reporting. But there really isn’t much analysis of local news except in the blogosphere. True, there are editorials in the newspaper, but without competition from the blogosphere there would be no balance of opinions. In this sense, there is a real market (need?) for local blogging, and I think that may scare local media.

On the other end of the spectrum, there is national coverage, with several 24 hour stations and analysis of the news–infotainment. Large media outlets have a lot ($$$) on the line, and cannot afford to only report the news. They have to entertain their viewers to keep them glued and keep the ad dollars rolling in. It seems to me that they are afraid of the blogosphere because they are actually getting scooped on stories that matter and are losing journalistic credibility. Others **cough O’Reilly cough** just can’t seem to take the heat of competition.

But I could be wrong.

Blogger’s Union

As nuts as it may sound, some are trying to do it. Michael Silence has this to say:

In a move that might make some people scratch their heads, a loosely formed coalition of left-leaning bloggers are trying to band together to form a labor union they hope will help them receive health insurance, conduct collective bargaining or even set professional standards.

This is actually the first union I’ve ever heard of that I think is a good idea. Maybe by forming and joining this inevitable disaster, these left-leaning bloggers will realize what a ridiculous idea it is. It may be the only way they ever get it through their thick skulls.

Then again, that didn’t really work with liberal talk radio did it? Instead of realizing that their product didn’t appeal to the market, they instead tried to blame the market for not desiring their product.

**UPDATE**
I thought of other benefits…

Based on the tendency of unions to discourage actual work, the end result will be that they will blog less. Everybody wins!

Think about it, no blogging on weekends, holidays, or after hours. Not to mention the frequent and extended breaks they will take while actually “working”. This idea sounds better and better the more I think about it.

Blogging The Iowa Debate Part IV

McCain’s answer on Vice-Presidential powers was actually pretty funny. “Only one President.” That is a strong answer.

Guiliani sounds like he’s pretty comfortable with Cheney’s roll, and Romney is defending G.W. Bush’s use of Cheney, saying it is entirely up to him.

If I were President, I’d have the Vice President make sure that I always have coffee and remove all of the green M&Ms from the bowl. I’d also let him go out amongst the interns and decide who gets backstage passes.

Ron Paul get interrupted by George Stephanopoulos when he tries to attack the present “conservative” platform.

On taxes…

The Fair Tax is getting some play, and Huckabee (correctly) observes that the current tax system penalizes productivity. Huckabee doesn’t admit that the Fair Tax would create a huge black market–23% discount and the black market sales people can sell it to you for the same price as the store. It’s still better than what we have though.

Romney doesn’t like the Fair Tax, Guiliani wants to eliminate the death tax and simplify the one that we have. He thinks it’s too complex to get to a Fair Tax. Yeah, that makes sense. Let’s make our current code more complex because changing it is too complex.

The accounting lobby will never allow a simple tax code to be implemented.

Tancredo actually makes a great point that the current tax system is a way for the federal government to control behavior.

What is your defining mistake…what a great question:
Huckabee gives a great answer about not taking care of his health…very personal.
Guiliani gives a comical answer, but doesn’t answer.
McCain volunteered to stay in combat and ended up a P.O.W. That is strong.
Tommy Thompson is going to end breast cancer. If he can do that I want him to be President for sure.
Most guys, Ron Paul included, give purely political answers. McCain wins.

Tancredo, I don’t think America is hopeless. I think you guys are trying to make it seem that way in order to distance yourselves from Bush because you can’t run on “more of the same”.

Tommy Thomson is hell bent on getting rid of political, and apparently grammatical, correctness.

Brownback is all about the family and overturning Roe v. Wade. Unelectable in every way.

McCain is running on nothing but the battle against radical Islamic extremists, and Guiliani wants to be the Mayor of The United States. Were you aware that he was the mayor of New York (during 9-11)? Just checking. People who watch national political coverage on a Sunday morning may not know that, right?

Romney wants strong _____. Fill in the blank–he wants everything strong.

I like Huckabee’s answer. I hope he really is aware of who his boss is and it isn’t just rhetoric. I think he’s done really well in this debate. I like a lot of what I’ve heard. I’m going to read more about him, especially what people in Arkansas think of him.

Ron Paul wants the government open and privacy for the people. I don’t think this is the strongest answer he could have given, even though I personally like it.

Duncan Hunter’s son should run for office. His dad’s entire platform seems to be based on the fact that his son is serving in Iraq.

Blogging The Iowa Debate Part III

It’s funny that Romney talks about speaking softly and carrying a big stick, because I was just about to say that he sure is using a low and soft voice when speaking about our military might. “We were here…they attacked us.” Half right…we were here, and there.

I think Tancredo wants to protect this country? Attacking the religious centers of other countries? That’s like attacking our financial centers. Do you think that would stir up a hornet’s nest or not? Look what it did here.

“Wouldn’t do nothing but…” Tommy Thompson, you sir is an idiot.

Now we’re moving on to the issue of the week–bridges. This may get us through as a major topic until hurricane season is in full swing.

All of these infrastructure issues are STATE ISSUES!!! What in the hell does this have to do with the federal government?

Blogging The Iowa Debate Part II

Getting a new post going here since they’ve decided to move to domestic issues.

Huckabee is now in favor of nationalized health care. Why can’t this just be left up to the individual states? Huckabee buddy, I hate to tell you this, but there is way more money in illness than there is in health unfortunately.

Thompson was Secretary of Health and is big on wellness and prevention. And you know, I am too, but it is up to individuals. Sorry.

Tancredo at least is against nationalized health care. That’s about the only sentence he gets out before he starts stumbling over his words again. Of course, he turns it into an immigration issue.

Does Romney ever answer the question that he is asked? EVER? He never addressed the bill that he was asked about.

I predict that Duncan Hunter will use the “525 wrist braces” as his battle cry until he bows out of the race.

Brownback misses an important point when talking about the desire to nationalize health care. Those that are in favor of nationalized health care don’t want better health care. They’d rather have average health care for everyone.

Stephanopoulos catches Guiliani waffling on whether or not he’d go in to Pakistan. Sort of petty on George’s part, but funny nonetheless.

George lets him off the hook and instead pins Romney down on the issue of going around Pakistan to get Bin Laden.

So much for domestic issues…let’s get right back to what is most important to the average Americans, a geography lesson about Pakistan and a discussion about spreading “democracy” half way around the world.

Huckabee is aware that our government should serve us, not the rest of the world. What a novel idea. Have these guys broken into Ron Paul’s hotel room and plagiarized his talking points?

Ron Paul expands on Huckabee’s statements be making it a philosophical argument. You can’t do it by force. When are people going to learn that this really is true. You get more flies with honey than you do with vinegar. Of course, a dead squirrel gets the most.

What the hell is Guiliani talking about? Going to the movies in New York City? The argument isn’t over how to spread democracy and build nations. The argument is whether or not it is philosophically correct to spread democracy and build nations.

McCain, we won the cold war because communism is a terrible idea.

Blogging The Iowa Debate Part I

I DVR’d it, so I’m a little behind.

First of all…does anyone actually believe that Fred Thompson is going to run? I just don’t see it happening.

Romney won’t address anything in Brownback’s ad, just gives examples that contradict it. It sounds like he may be personally in pro-choice, but governs as pro-life. “I changed my position.” In most people’s eyes, that makes you a waffler Mitt, sorry.

Giuliani supports the 2nd amendment. “Supporting the 2nd amendment” doesn’t mean that you support private gun ownership. It means you support your interpretation of the 2nd amendment. Big difference.

Ron Paul gets the first shot at Iraq saying that the war is illegal…that’s quite a shot. He uses it as an opportunity to attack foreign policy. But Hunter gives a hawkish response. You know, I think you have to give it to the Democrats on the fact that they concentrate on what needs to be done here, not in other countries. Their methods may not be the most sane, but at least their intentions are good (I think).

Huckabee wants to reduce our dependency on foreign oil as a solution. I am completely behind that idea, but it’s not going to solve itself overnight. Brownback wants to basically take over Iraq and tell them how to divide themselves up. It actually sounds like what Vic Mackey does with Spook Street and the One Niners on The Shield.

McCain wants to stay the course of George Bush in Iraq–politically suicide, at least in my estimation.

George Stephanopoulos wants to know if there are any differences between McCain and Guiliani. Of course there is. Guiliani is okay with torture “any means necessary”.

Romney concurs with the other leaders. That’s a safe bet. His attack on Obama is pretty funny though.

Tancredo finally gets his chance to chime in. You know my opinion of this guy–he’s better off showing up to the debate and keeping his mouth shut. Every time he talks he looks more and more like George Bush III. He’s attacking the rules of engagement. I guess he’s long-tailing his talking points now?

Tommy Thompson, I have a word of advice. The next time you want to give a prepared speech in what is supposed to be a live debate, spend a little more time practicing your delivery. Stephen Hawking could have delivered that speech with more emotion and believability.

Winding up this segment with Ron Paul. He attacks the neo-cons and…

Wait a minute…McCain admits that the war was mismanaged for a long time. Yet he’s totally in favor of sticking with the guy who mismanaged it.

Barbie Fever is Sweeping Knoxville Blogs

So it’s not just me. Other bloggers in Knoxville are being bombarded with Barbie traffic as well.

Joe Powell :

An insatiable desire to find Hitleresque cat pics and porn doesn’t exactly boost my overall optimism in web-aware humans. It makes me wonder if there is some nefarious site of Hitler Porn which gathers billions of readers.)

I wouldn’t doubt it.  I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll end up saying it again…

Blogging is a lot like having a yard sale. The only thing more amazing that what people are completely uninterested in buying is what they are interested in buying.

Live Blogging of the South Carolina Debate Part III

Last segment…

Question 41: McCain wouldn’t torture someone because of world opinion, but he’s sure okay with occupying other countries.

Question 42: Guiliani doesn’t want to be responsible…just use “any method you can think of”

Question 43: Romney has been diffusing bombs during his time as governor of Massachusetts. And combing his hair.

Question 44: The obvious follow up question for Thompson is whether or not we will build a nation after we wipe out the African nation.

Question 45: Brownback bangs the podium like McCain bangs on the microphone.

Question 46: Hunter fixed his hair. “High pressure techniques”. I actually like that answer.

Question 47: McCain is doing a good job here backing up his position on torture.

Question 48: Gilmore recites his resume. He’d go to the U.N. That is the wrong answer. Especially because he was asked about the economy in the face of an attack, not the U.N.

Question 49: Huckabee totally ignores the question.

Question 50: Ron Paul wanders around this question…not a very good response.

Question 51: Screw Reagan, Tancredo invokes the name of Jack Bauer. Now that will get him some votes.

Question 52: Gilmore is stalling while he tries to figure out how he wants to answer this question. Chris Wallace calls him out on it. There will be minorities running in our party (but not this year).

Question 53: Romney support NCLB…ick! Kids aren’t getting the education they need because the government is in charge of it.

Question 54: Hunter gets a softball that lets him get back to his stance on China and trade.