Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Songs and Campaigns: How Politicians Never Learn to Listen

Tom Petty Tells Bachmann to Back Off "American Girl"

I like to think that this blog has documented very well the stupidity of Michele Bachmann.  But, I can't really blame her. All politicians have a stupid streak through them.  There's a quiet tragedy about how politicians never seem to actually listen to the song.

In the above link, there's an article that details Bachmann using the song "American Girl" and didn't get the permission of Tom Petty.  Below that, HuffPost lists the several examples of politicians that use songs without the artist's permission.  Even though its probably a biased list (most of the offenders are Republicans, though Obama is on the list), it seems that most frequent offender was John McCain, and specifically John McCain back in 2008.  It was like an intern just hooked up their iPod shuffle to the PA system and hit play.  Ridiculous.

Two things strike me as insanely odd in this:  First, why are there so many offenders?  I mean, surely the one mistake that would have been made would have been Ronald Reagan using "Born in the USA" and then all political campaigns after that would have hired a guy to ask all the artists whether or not they can use the songs.  You got a thousand people working for the most minor of campaigns.  All you have to do is google the record company and call them.

Bachmann Intern:  Hey, I'm So-And-So with the Michele Bachmann for President Campaign and we were wondering if we could get your permission to play "American Girl" during campaign rallies.

Tom Petty:  What?

Bachmann Intern:  Can we play "American Girl" during our campaign rallies.

Tom Petty:  Um... no.

SEE HOW EASY THAT WAS!?  It's a quiet action, your rejection isn't public and people wasting their time talking about how your campaign is ridiculous because you couldn't take the time for a five minute phone call. PS, I wish that calling Tom Petty was that easy.

Me:  So, when you were touring with Dylan in the 80's, you guys totally got high, right?

Tom Petty:  What?

Me:  You got blazed with Dylan?

Tom Petty:  Um... yeah, man, like all the time.

Me:  Awesome.

But this leads me to the other point:  Do the politicians actually listen to the songs that they are choosing to play at the rallies???  Reagan obviously never listened to "Born in the USA" before he started playing it or he would have known that the song is from the point of view of a homeless guy who was a veteran of Vietnam and was subsequently rejected from American society despite his service.  Charlie Crist played "Road to Nowhere", which is a terrible, terrible, terrible idea for a campaign song and Crist deserved to lose just based off of that.  Why not play "And She Was"?  The girl in the video was floating for Crist's sake (sorry for the pun, couldn't help myself), which suggests that we're going some where with Crist!

Then you have Bob Dole changing the lyrics from "I'm a Soul Man" to "I'm a Dole Man", which is like saying "Yeah, I'm fucking cool!" to "I work for a banana company and I'm here to see that all your banana needs are being met..."

And then we come back to Bachmann's use of "American Girl".  It's clearly a song about a girl that jumps off the balcony after losing something (or someone) that completed her.  I'll grant its appropriate in the sense that what made her American was the fact that she was going to try and die trying, if that's what it meant.  But maybe you shouldn't share with your followers that you don't have a problem with them imaging you jumping off the balcony.  Think about that.  But I suppose, if you did, you wouldn't be Michele Bachmann.

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Problem With Bachmann and the Modern Media

Michele Bachmann Doesn't Know How to Answer a Fucking Question

The question is simple and the answer is transparent.  Bachmann is asked very plainly, "Why did you say that Obama only issued one oil drilling permit when he released over 250?".

The response:  Obama hasn't released enough.

(All the articles that I have here go over to the Politifact website, my favorite news site on the web.  I like it because it's fair, even-minded and has a long, long memory.)

No where in the Bachmann lexicon is she capable of admitting that she was wrong.  Go ahead, try to find a statement that Bachmann's made that she's come back and said that she was wrong on.  Its not like she said "My favorite color is blue..." when all the Bachmann insiders have said that it's red.  I'm talking about the Treasury Secretary wants us to have a One World currency, or (my favorite) that Swine Flu can be attributed to Democrats being president, when it happened under a Republican.  Not just wrong, but insanely wrong, wrong that could only have been achieved by knowing what the correct answer was and then drawing the lines to the complete opposite facts.

I should point out that no congressman (or woman) has ever gone directly (which is the key word) from the House to the White House (though there are plenty who have tried.)  I think that Bachmann has about the same chance that Pat Robertson did back in '88.  The Evangelicals will be mobilized for a little bit but other elements of the party are going to resist the portion that insists upon the Christian religion (please see Hucakbee campaign) and want to focus on other aspects of the platform.

But in the meantime, this exchange makes two things quite clear:

FIRST:  If Michele Bachmann is incapable of saying something to the effect of "You know what, I was way off on the numbers, HOWEVER, the point about the Obama Administration's hostility towards off-shore drilling shows BLAH BLAH BLAH!", then what does this mean for her presidency?  I mean, if the US makes a mistake on the international stage (a novel concept, I know), is she going to redact it?  Is she going to acknowledge that we're flesh and blood humans capable of making a mistake?

And it's not a question of opinion that the last Swine Flu outbreak was during a Democrat.  It's an objective fact that it happened during the Ford Administration (one of the forgotten worst presidencies because Carter was so much worse ::eye roll::) Did she apologize and say "You know, what I was just trying to be snide."

I know that it's not politically-wise to apologize for cocking up and moving on, but you'll always gain the respect of the people whenever you admit that you were wrong.

Instead, all she could say was that Obama was messing something up about offshore drilling, like he was supposed to put the drill literally on his shoulder and swim to the bottom of the Gulf and get the oil up through a crazy straw... I assume Bachmann has a lot of crazy straws...  But this leads me to the second problem:

SECOND:  When she was obviously dodging the question, when she wouldn't apologize, when she wouldn't even admit that she had on several occasions said something that was not only wrong, but misleading (which is what makes it Pants on Fire), what did Schieffer do?  He said "I don't believe that you answered the question...", and then ended the segment.

There has to be a responsibility that the media has towards those that are LYING.  He wasn't even trying to pin her down in the report that she had been caught lying and just let it roll on by.  "Hope to see you down the trail."?  I'm not accusing Schieffer of favoritism with Bachmann or the GOP, but I am accusing him of laziness.  When you repeat a question, and they are giving you the same answer, ask "Why are dodging the question?" or "Why won't you answer the question directly?" or "Did you know that a decapitated monkey with Clinton bumper stickers stapled to its body has a better chance of becoming president than you?"

The unfortunate thing is that there's no recourse, there's no real chance to take a step back and to have an honest conversation about how we can't have an honest conversation.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Herman Cain Doesn't Know What Racism Is

Hermain Cain: Jon Stewart Attacked Me "Because I'm Black"

First off the bat, no, he didn't.  Stewart attacked Cain because Cain said that he wasn't going to read a bill more than three pages.  Let's remember Obama's the first president since Clinton to actually show some intellectual curiosity and a respect that issues have nuances, like health care reform and wars and whatnot. While he did come back and say that he was exaggerating, he didn't really fucking seem like it at the time.

Conservatives often get pegged as being a pack of racists and I think that some liberals throw the term too loosely around.  For everyone's edification, this is the definition of racism.

Talking in a voice doesn't do that.  There's a fine line, sure.  If Stewart had said "Mammy done tol' me to never do no readin' or nuttin!", that would have been racist because it perpetuates stereotypes and in the context of Cain, it would have been clear that the slight would have been against blacks.  However, speaking with a little scratchiness in the voice doesn't mean that you're trying to invoke imagery of blacks.

Now, the previous point is moot.  On Stewart's appearance on Fox News, he doesn't address this issue.  He cites the fact that he's an equal opportunity offender and leaves it at that.

But if Herman Cain thinks that this is racist, he's got a lot waiting for him.  Remember that the Republican Party in Southern California sent around an email in 2008 saying that if Barack Obama was elected, the White House would look like this:

Now, this is racist.


One last thing:  I find it incredulous that Herman Cain only heard about it when he was talking to Sean Hannity.  He said he was campaigning, but c'mon.  Really?  You were too busy to know that Stewart made a joke about you?  Hell, man, you're not running for president if the Daily Show hasn't made a joke about you?

I used to listen to Cain's talk radio program.  I've heard him give speeches and I've heard him talking to others.  The man is vain, arrogant and is in so much love with himself, he cuddles with himself after he jerks off.  The only reason why he's responded to Stewart/Daily Show is because it's free air time to him.  Granted, I'm doing him a favor by talking about him on this blog, but that's going to end now.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Converting Across the Aisle

One of my favorite thinkers of our day is Christopher Hitchens.  Most of the time, he's very well-reasoned in his arguments and, even when he's off the mark, he's tight, biting and smarter than a god-damn whip.

Recently, he was diagnosed with esophageal cancer and has slowed his output as of late.  I usually watch him for his religious debates (brilliant, brilliant, brilliant!) and for his commentary on politics foreign and domestic.  I don't always agree with him, but I respect the hell out of him.

I always forget he reviews books and, this past weekend, reviewed the book from playwright/author David Mamet.  "The Secret Knowledge" is a book that discusses Mamet's "conversion" from liberal to conservative... 

And Hitchens drops an elbow from the sky! And Mamet is down...

I highly recommend the article because it shows how adroit Hitchens is with the written word and that it's not necessarily a problem of what the argument is but it is a problem as to how a problem is presented.  And the argument present within the book is clunky and full of errors.

In the effort of full disclosure, there may have a been a mix up regarding conservative thinkers: American Thinker: Mixing up Hitchens, Mamet and Hayek?

In response to that article, I have to admit that for all the points that Hitchens makes, this is merely an oversight for the overall argument.  I agree that sources need to be cited properly, but really?  You're point is that it wasn't Fredrich Hayek, it was Thomas Sowell?  What about, oh, I don't know, everything else that was mentioned?

I used to think of myself as conservative, especially when I first got into politics.  I think my change to liberalism began in relation to three events, all of which occurred in or around 2006:

1- Hurricane Katrina.  Whether the government should have been responsible is something else entirely.  However, since there was supposed to be a response and it was slow, it seemed like the answer wasn't to limit government but to try and make it better in its current manifestation.

2- The Iraq War.  I supported the invasion and subsequent "occupation" (there's really not another word for it) and for three years, I defended it and argued for it.  Then, the death toll reached 2,000 American soldiers.  And I thought to myself "That's it.  That's the number".  In Blowin' In The Wind, Bob Dylan asks "And how many deaths will it take 'till he knows that too many people have died?"  And it haunts me, still to this day that I have a number.  2,000.  Not 1,999 or one, but 2,000.

3-  (Not so proud of this one) I started dating a staunch liberal... hey, liberal or conservative, we all want to get laid.

Now, these events happened slowly, over the course of a few years.  When I got to "the other side", I looked back on the company that I kept and the thoughts I had and the views that I espoused, and I thought to myself about how ardent I was in believing these things.

But, I thought to myself, I didn't think of myself as wrong, any more than I consider myself to be wrong now.  At this point, I fully comprehended what it was to have a point of view and the difference between the subjective and the objective.  One can have an opinion and I can have an opinion, but we should all share facts.  I'm 26 years old.  I've realized this.

Mamet hasn't.  And that's the problem with conversions in general, be it political or religious.  The new and faithful are more adamant about the belief than those raised in the proposition.  (Don't believe me?  Ask Cat Stevens)  And if you think that Mamet has got it together, thats fine... but he admires Sarah Palin for being "a Worker".

What work has she done?  I can only really venture to say that she's an excellent self-promoter, but as a mother?  Failed.  As a politician?  Failed.  As a leader?  I don't think that she's even begun to learn how to do that.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Meghan McCain Is Completely Reasonable (Countdown to her being kicked out of GOP begins NOW!)

Meghan McCain's Advice to the GOP Hopefuls

Two of the things that I've always told myself if I ever started a political blog would be first, that my arguments would be weak and in an echo chamber AND, most importantly, about once a week I would talk about how I have a crush on Meghan McCain.

But whats secretly most appealing about her is that she's someone who is not just extremely beautiful but also very reasonable.  She's like the version of her father that got me interested in politics (a lifetime ago in 2000).  She's like a date-able, blonde George Will.  Don't get me wrong, George Will seems like a nice kind of guy, the kind that would insist on paying the bill and would end the first date with a hug after holding your hand on the walk.  He's classy, in a Gilded-Age "You're not a flapper are you" kind of way.

What was I talking about?  Oh, yeah, Meghan McCain.

I've already included the link where McCain the Younger lists the different things that the GOP Hopefuls will have to do in order to get the nomination.  I don't disagree with her by and large.  There are a couple of little things though:

"What the Republican Party needs is a candidate unafraid to put the president up against the wall and call him out on all the damage his administration has done, especially to the economy, in the last three years. "

And all that damage would include what?  De-regulation of banks?  Turning a blind eye and encouraging the regulators to turn the other way or even get in bed with the people who brought us into the financial mess in the first place?  It's phrasing like this that makes one think that the federal government is the reason why we're in the economic straits that we're in, when we all know that this is not the case.  Would Ms. McCain also be willing to blame the previous president for signing the $700 billion bailout or continue to ignore it and pretend that there was just $787 billion bailout by the current president?

However, McCain makes an open acknowledgement that not many in the GOP are willing to make right now.    The fact of the matter is that Obama is going to be extremely difficult to hit and bring down in 2012.  The sooner that R's begin to admit that, the closer to winning they'll get.

The best bit of advice was to "outlast Palin fever".  McCain manages to be diplomatic about Palin, but also, in a sense, derides the actual tenacity of the campaign.  The one comment of "... at some point she is going to have to do something other than come up with clever soundbites." seems to be a little off.  I remember that was a major critique of Clinton was all he came up with were soundbites and you know what that got him?  Two terms.

One last bit:  the "forget about Iowa" part.  In the section, she talks about how its less important than people might portray it to be and that the real gamble and the real stakes are established in New Hampshire.  She's not entirely correct.  Obama made his first strong showing in Iowa back in 2008, to the surprise (even shock) to many.  Granted, Hilary Clinton came back in the NH primary, but Iowa was supposed to be a cake walk for her and, instead, it marked the beginning of the end (or the seemingly endless Bataan death march to the Democratic nomination.)

Also would be fair to point out that in 2000, John McCain didn't get the nod in IA, he got it in NH and then proceeded to get the shit beat out of him by Bush II all over the rest of the USA.  I say this not with malice towards John McCain; after all, I was supporting him and wishing that the rest of the country would see reason and vote McCain in 2000.  But Iowa did figure into the overall political strategy and, the candidates can't completely ignore IA.  Why?

Well, assume that a plausible candidate like Romney, Johnson or Huntsman pull out of IA and then put everything down in NH?  Now imagine if Herman Cain or (worse?) Michelle Bachmann getting the nod in IA.  They went from being ridiculous and inane to being "legitimate" and "plausible".

I mean, generally speaking, the entire primary/caucus/nomination process (on both sides, but especially the GOP) has to be reformed.  The arbitrariness of random states holding a good deal of political sway in the process isn't good politics and it's detrimental to the entirety of the campaign.  I can go on and on about it (and probably will in a later post).  But, the way that everything is set up currently, the road has to go through IA.  A long, desolate, pointless road, but a road nonetheless.

Jon Stewart Pisses on the Rug in Fox's House and Doesn't Blink

I don't genuinely believe that Chris Wallace is a bad person.  Nor do I believe that Chris Wallace is a blind fool. But it seemed like Wallace was more than willing to do the same old tactics when it came to trying to wrangle Stewart into the little logical fallacies that are presented as true arguments.

"Well, Diana Sawyer said one time that the cops would be able to arrest you in Arizona just because you look Mexican and THAT'S NOT TRUE!"

"Well, you're right, that's not true."

"Well, then the mainstream media has an intense liberal bias and we're looking to balance that out."

I've never liked the phrase "mainstream media", even when I watched Fox News on a regular basis, even when I was voting Republican.  Fox News consistently ranks first in the ratings and yet calls CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS and MSNBC and they brag, brag, brag about it.

But Stewart is in rare form in the video.  He's at once gracious AND he's sharp, biting and unforgiving.  He's a man of principles, probably because he takes criticisms of himself more seriously than most in the media do.

One last thing that I'll make mention of:  Wallace says "Let's talk about your network".  Then, he plays a clip from the Roast of Pamela Anderson and then has this "AH HA!" look on his face, like he just won the argument.  The point that no other network seems to get is that The Daily Show is a show that is comedy first and commentary second.  Also, if you're going to run a news network, get criticized by The Daily Show and then go "Well, your network tells dick and fart jokes!", you have automatically lost the argument.  The fact of the matter is that The Daily Show isn't news, it's satire, and if you're too blind or dumb to see the difference, you're in bigger trouble than Stewart making a joke about you.

Kudos to Stewart and as long as Jon and the Daily Show don't take themselves that seriously, we just might be alright

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Single Issue Voter and the Thrill Is Gone

I'm pretty liberal.  At least, that's what I consider myself to be and have considered myself to be that way for a while.  But, more so, I consider myself practical.  That's why when I started reading this article: Progressives Break Up With Obama, I was pretty frustrated.

Reason being is this:  the problem that many have with conservatives and the GOP is that they are narrow-minded or corridor thinkers.  They focus on one thing and they run with that.  I'm not talking about something general, like the economy or any of the wars that we are engaged in at present but, bar none, the most important thing that we get done is marriage equality!  And immigration reform!  But NOOOOOOOOO, he hasn't paid MEEEEE enough attention, so I'm going to create a fissure in the party and the movement until I GET WHAT I WANT and I don't care if a Rep gets elected in the process.

To these "progressives", I refer to the following website:

In there, you will find that the prez has done quite a bit and a lot of his political capital was spent on health care reform, which goes to help ALL groups and minorities in the country, not just legislation to focus on specific groups of people.

I remember in 2008 (a lifetime ago) when there was talk about why people were supporting the Obama campaign.  And I remember reading a round-table discussion wherein several people were talking about why they were there.  And a young, single mother was talking about how tough things had been for her as late.  And then it got over to an older guy who was asked why he was there and he thought for a moment and responded:  I'm here to help people like the mother over there.

Don't get me wrong.  While I support Obama and I hope that he gets re-elected, I'm not in the disillusioned world that everything is perfectly fine, that he's not without flaws.  But at the same time, I think that he's a stronger candidate than the GOP has to offer at present.  And please not, its that I think he's a strong choice, not because I think he's the lesser of two evils or something like that.  A vote for Obama shouldn't be a vote against the GOP, it should be an affirmation for the Obama.

So, when people come out and they say that they begrudgingly support Obama but he hasn't done everything that every liberal/progressive wants him to do.

Sorry, guys, I guess we'll have to wait until next term to get our gay caliphate up and running...

Thursday, June 16, 2011

NY State Republican Comes Out in Support of Gay Marriage in Most Awesome of Ways

This is full of win!

This is why when I first started to get into politics, I leaned conservative, in large part because of John McCain.  The idea that someone would reject what the status quo was in the party and that they would follow through what they thought was right.

One of the strengths of the modern GOP versus the current Dem is that they always ALWAYS vote together as a group.  This, to me, is a sense of true bipartisanship.  And it couldn't be put in a better way:

"Fuck it."


I think that everyone in the poltical realm as a crush on someone from 'the other side'.  For me, and I don't think that I would find any dissent in this statement, Meghan McCain is a beautiful woman.

She is what conservatives want Ann Coulter to be:  attractive.

I didn't really have anything beyond that particular statement.  Just wanted to share that little tidbit.

Weiner Shrinks to Nothing: the Political Obituary of a Horny Democrat

Weiner Gone but Boehner Remains?

This sort of thing happens to the best of them.

I think that the first thing to point out would be that the sex scandals are by no means a strictly Dem problem.  The last several have included the GOP (John Ensign, Mark Sanford and Mark Foley... I hate thinking about that last one...) but it seems like a stigma that is on the Donkey Party.

While there is a feeling that this one is different, mostly because there was never any real physical contact, it doesn't FEEL as much like cheating as crossing the line of touching.  But emotionally and spiritually it IS cheating.  That's something that Clinton never cleared up properly.  You have to remember, kids, in the 90's, we didn't talk about Oral Sex that much and there was, if only for a brief moment, a conversation as to whether or not BJs counted.  Then, we lost our minds as to the fact that we actually asked that question.

Now, Weiner is resigning and there's one thing that should be made abundantly clear.  This isn't a move from the constituents of Weiner's own district in NY.  This is a plain and simple move from the Dem Leadership.

On the one hand, I feel bad because Weiner, in all honesty, was good for business.  He was a firebrand, unashamed, unabashed liberal and he was fun to watch.  And he stood up to dicks on Fox News and in the halls of Congress.  At the very least, he was funny and most of the time, he was passionate.  Which is rare on both sides.

Then he had to take pictures of his cock and send them to people online (first mistake).  Then he got caught (second mistake).  And then, he lied about it (third and biggest mistake).  Reason why the last one is the biggest is because for the few weeks that have followed the scandal, everyone said the same thing for criticism:  if he's going to lie about this, what else would he be willing to lie about?  And THAT was the moment Weiner lost everything.

But, again, his decision to step down from the seat is strictly because of pressure within the party, notably from Pelosi from the beginning and now, in the last few days, Obama, who sent a quiet "Fuck you" through the media by saying that if he were in the same position, he would have resigned.

As much of a fan of Weiner (hehehehe) as I am, I also have to give it to the Dem leadership.  They're not taking any chances and their cutting a guy out from a district that more than likely is going to be safe the next time around.  Sure, it has a history of going between the two parties, but I think that with the current Dem fervor going through NY, it's going to be safe.

I suppose if the Congressman was in any higher position or if the district he represented wasn't a swing one, the Dems would have fought harder for him.  But, in my opinion, everything turned out the way that it should have in any case.  You fucked up.  You got to go.

In a related note, since we lost Weiner, can we go back and pronounce Boehner as Boner?

Rick Perry. Sigh and Yawn.

Rick Perry Running For President?

I don't feel that I have to remind the public about the rule against voting for former Govs of Texas for Prez, but I think that I'm going to anyway.

DON'T SUPPORT FORMER GOVERNORS OF TEXAS!  That state doesn't get to send another person to be prez.  And if Republicans have a problem with that, I would cite Jimmy Carter.  You want another Georgia Peach heading to DC?  No?  Good... now Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich should drop out any time now...

But most pertinently to the case of Governor Perry is that he said specifically that he didn't want to be Prez.  What does it say when he says something very specific like "I don't want to be President of the United States." and then goes to "I'm going to think about it."?  I mean, for a group of conservative intellectuals (I use the term loosely) that don't allow for ambiguity or shades of grey, this is showing some depth.

It's not that I think that Perry shouldn't run for president.  I mean, he shouldn't but that's not the point.  The point is when you are specific with your constituents about a campaign promise, you have to follow through.  There are some cases when these things change.  A guy running for president usually says that the system is broken and that they are going to change it and, once elected, rarely get to affect the change that they want (at least in Obama's case, he tried.)  You have to go back and talk to the people that put you into office and rationalize everything that happened in the interim (between when you were elected and what happened once you got there.)

But there are certain promises that are EASY to maintain!  "I'm not going to run for President." is a gimme!  Just don't run for president.

Also, I'm not entirely comfortable with a guy who thoughtlessly talked about Texas' "special" case re: secession.   Because I thought that the Civil War settled the whole thing.  And the answer was "No."

But is it just me or is Perry a little boring?  I mean, he doesn't have the colossal  fuck-up comments like W. and everyone in TX seems to be pretty happy with him.  Feel free to correct me.

And here I go correcting myself.  This is a guy that has invited all the other govs. of the nation to get together in TX and have a big prayer pow-wow so that Jesus will come off his Moon Base and help the rest of the country... even though we have God on our side... WAIT, Jesus isn't on the Moon, that's what Mormons think...

But, joking aside, there's no fire in the belly, there's no passion for the office of the presidency, not like when he was running for Gov. of TX.  I don't think that he's actually going to do it, in the end.  After all, he'd have to fight for the Xian vote in the GOP with Bachmann (I almost wrote Palin), but honestly, he doesn't seem like the kind of guy that wants to fight head-to-head with Craaaaazeeeee.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Huntsman Is In! Countdown to Crazy Shit Happening...

I think that he's not a bad candidate, but like so many others (Gingrich, Romeny), he's going to be punished for at one point in time being reasonable.

What gets me is that he took that position as Ambassador to China under the Obama administration.  Why?  He would have done as well staying in Utah.

He hasn't thrown mud as of yet, but he might be measuring his targets a little more.

As a former Mormon (I left the church in 2008), I'm still kind of excited that two TBMs are running.  I wonder how this is going to affect the dynamic, especially with the potential of bigoted comments coming from the opponents.

I think the first one will come from Michelle Bachmann, but it wouldn't surprise me if Cain took it by a nose.

Also, everyone was talking about how cordial the debaters were with each other last night and how focus they were on Obama.  However, I give it two months before they really start throwing feces at each other.

Let the monkey parade begin!

The Score Sheet

I'm going to keep a running list of those that are running for president.  Officially running.  Which means I get to ignore Sarah Palin for as long as I can.  I'm also going to rank them in the order that I think that they would be good at beating Obama.  If you disagree, feel free to comment and let me know why I'm wrong.  Then, I'll tell you why you are wrong.

1.  Mitt Romney - He's more politically savvy than people give him credit for.  He has the business credentials that they want a prez candidate to have.  He's a good looking guy and what should be an asset has been played as a hindrance:  He's Mormon.  The GOP have the chance to nominate someone that would be the closest they've come to a diversity choice and make big in-roads in the religious plurality.

2.  Gary Johnson - I just like this guy.  He's consistent, well-spoken and has stayed under the radar, both intentionally and because his name isn't "Sarah Palin".  Keep an eye on him.  I think he's our spoiler.

3.  Newt Gingrich - Logistically, the campaign has been a nightmare, but you got to admit that it was ballsy that he came out against the Ryan Plan.  It was a quasi-reasonable statement from a guy that normally isn't.

4.  Tim Pawlenty - I think I've had breakfasts that I was more excited about that Tim Pawlenty.  He also falls into the category of the being reasonable, when he wants to be, but he's already moving further to the right in an unconscionable sense.

5.  Michelle Bachmann - I really wish that she was lower on this list, but first there are too many people that are more rotten than Bachmann.  Also, Bachmann has sense to play up her Xianity in Iowa (the same state that almost went for Pat Robertson back in the 80's), so she's trying to position herself as the Huckabee for 2012.  Or the Martin Sheen in The Dead Zone, I can't really tell the difference.

6.  Ron Paul - Paul reminds me that whenever you make an event on Facebook, everyone comes by and says "Oh, yeah! Imma TOTALLY be there!", so everyone's thinking "well, there must be like a THOUSAND people that are going to this party".  There's a lot of hype and a lot of buzz.  But no one shows up.  Which is a shame because, while I disagree with Paul by and large on a lot of things, he's principled.  And you have to respect that in a politician.  Though how he's still in office after 2008, I don't know...

7.  Rick Santorum - I was really surprised that he would throw his hat into the ring.  There's no one that has a middle of the road opinion of Santorum.  Either you hate 'em or you don't.  He's banking on the fact that people don't remember that when he was Senator from PA, he said homosexuality was the problem of the nation... Now if you were ask, let's say...

8.  Herman Cain - he'd say that the problem was Muslims.  Why?  Because he comes from the Glenn Beck School of Thought, which means that the best day in America was on September 12th, 2001, the ashes and rubble of the WTC and Pentagon and the field of PA smoldered and everyone was in lockstep with Bush II.  I respect the style of his speeches but I won't respect a man that can't appreciate that legislation takes more than three pages to get across.

I want my prez to be smarter than me. I want my prez to be better than me.  I don't want someone that I could fill in for...

9.  Fred Karger - I'm not even sure why I put him on the list.  I know I could be a better prez than him.  And he's really running just to spite Romney.  If you're gay and you're just out there spreading hate about a Mormon, you've become the enemy in the instant that you preach.

Stay tuned.

GOP Debate - Pick Romney and Cut the Fat

If the moment could be crystallized and maintained, it would seem that the GOP would be able to rectify the mistake that they made last prez election cycle by supporting Mitt Romney.  The fact of the matter is that he is the most sensible of the entire group, both in 2008 and now again in 2012.  Reports seem to indicate two things: first, he's the man to beat.  Second, that he would be the only chance at diversity that the GOP would have.

Michelle Bachmann also quietly announced that she was running for prez.  I can only imagine that she feels qualified because she took care of so many foster kids and, oh yeah, GOD told her to run for prez.  Because we will live in a country where when we tell others that a voice told them to do something, unless it was child rape or murder, we accept it.  Here's a woman who said that God told her to run for the House, but still had to raise the most money EVER for a House Campaign.  What, even with God on your side, you don't have the capital necessary?  I thought you just need the go ahead from the Big Guy Upstairs?

Also, on behalf of the state of Georgia, I would like to apologize for Herman Cain.  People are getting excited about him, but they also got excited about Alan Keyes (which nothing ever came of, I would remind the audience.)  The fact that the man hasn't apologized for the comments regarding Muslims and, in addition, hasn't resigned from the campaign entirely is ludicrous and shows that there are still bigots that can run for office and bigots that are going to support other bigots.

Even when given more than ample opportunity to redact the statement, he just doubled-down and said that he wouldn't hire those that were trying to kill him.  Well, what a brave fucking position!  Unlike Obama, who hired assassins and thugs to surround him... what President would hire people that are trying to kill him?  Even for the flourish and rhetoric, Cain is just a distraction.  If the GOP is smart, they'll ignore him and drop him like a bad habit.  But, as an Obama supporter, I hope he stays in the race through several primaries.

Back in 2008, the GOP had a very simple choice to make:  first, they had to find someone who was willing to run for president that didn't have strong or blatant ties to the previous administration.  They managed to cock that up relatively quickly.

Second, they had to find someone that appealed to the center more than Bush II.  They had (and have) that in Romney.  Romney managed to get elected Gov. of Mass. as a Republican!  And everyone that I've talked to from Boston that remembers the Romney years all said, "he was a great governor!"  Understanding of course that during the primaries and caucuses you have to appeal to the base, but the smart campaigner will be able to appeal to the base and convince them that they have to think about the general election now.

Having said all that, I will reiterate that I'm an ardent Obama supporter and will advocate for his re-election.