Wednesday, July 29, 2015

A Rumble in the GOP

The GOP is having trouble in their own ranks. (Again.) 
Congressmen Walter Jones and Mark Meadows are trying to ouster Speaker of the House Boehner.

The two men told CNN that Boehner uses intimidation and coercion to get members to vote his way on legislation. 
Jones says, "No one should be intimidated for voting your conscience. If you are here to vote for the will of the Speaker and not the will of the people, you don’t need to be here."

The man has a point. Kudos to him for speaking truth. 

Meadows made a motion to vacate the chair — last attempted roughly a century ago. This motion is typically considered a privileged resolution, which means the House would hold a vote within two legislative days. Meadows, however, chose not to offer it in that form, which he said was a sign that he wanted a discussion. Whatever that means. 

Of course, we have no way of knowing if Boehner is a butthead or not. But Jones and Meadows do deserve some credit for blowing the whistle.

Now to see if their coup works. 

Source: Politico

Scott Walker Orders the Cheesesteak (Fail)

Alas, he ordered wrong. He got the American cheese with no onions. You're supposed to get the whiz with the onions. 
There was even a West Wing episode about this! (Season 7 Episode 9, which YouTube has failed me on, and cannot provide the right clip.)
How can you get it wrong after Josh Lyman has explained it??

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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Fox News Lowers Threshold for Debate

Fox News announced today that they have lowered the requirements for admission into the first GOP debate. This means candidates like Carly Fiorina, George Pataki, and Lindsay Graham will be able to participate.
This is fantastic news. Fiorina, Pataki, and Graham are all formidable and worthy candidates. They deserve to be heard and recognized.
As is usual at this point in the primary process, there is the showboat (Trump) and the extremists who are getting all of the attention. It makes sense that these are the candidates getting the attention right now, since only the truly passionate (extremist) voters are paying attention, and the media likes the showboats. So far this is a pretty predictable race. The more normal, stronger, less extremist candidates aren't interesting stories - yet. They are the candidates that the mainstream voters will want to learn more about in a few months. They just get overshadowed by the more flamboyant candidates in the early stages.
When all of the extremism starts to settle down, and more people start to pay attention, it will be the candidates like Fiorina, Walker, and Rubio that the general public will gravitate towards. But until then, people like The Donald, or Bernie Sanders, tend to steal the spotlight.
Fox News lowering the threshold is a win for the common man and mainstream America. 

Friday, July 24, 2015

Jeb Bush on Sharknado

Apparently this is the week where the politicians sound off on cable TV.

Needed a quick explainer on this #Sharknado3 thing, Mark Cuban
Posted by Jeb Bush on Friday, July 24, 2015

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Ted Cruz as Captain Kirk?

Senator Ted Cruz is a Star Trek fan. Possibly a delusional and ill-informed Star Trek fan. That's not a knock on Trekkies. That's a hit on Cruz. I'm a pretty big Trek fan (and overall sci fi fan) myself. Cruz could have won me over with slightly more accurate and interesting commentary. 

In a New York Times interview the presidential wannabe declared, "I think it is quite likely that Kirk is a Republican and Picard is a Democrat."

Quote from the article: 
If you were a journalist interviewing, what would you ask? Who knows, I might well ask, "Kirk or Picard" I've never been asked that before, and I actually have a strong opinion on it. 
Well, that goes with being a Kirk person. It does indeed. Let me do a little psychoanalysis. If you look at "Star Trek: The Next Generation," it basically split James T. Kirk into two people. Picard was Kirk's rational side, and William Riker was his passionate side. I prefer a complete captain. To be effective you need both heart and mind.
I thought your critique might go in a different direction, because "Next Generation" is more touchy-feely in its politics than the original. No doubt. The original "Star Trek" was grittier. Kirk is working class; Picard is an aristocrat. Kirk is a passionate fighter for justice; Picard is a cerebral philosopher. The original "Star Trek" pressed for racial quality, which was one of its best characteristics, but it did so without sermonizing.
Do you have a suspicion about whether Kirk would be a Democrat or a Republican? I think it is quite likely that Kirk is a Republican and Picard is a Democrat. 

He's flat out wrong. Even Shatner called Cruz out. 

(Shatner is Canadian.) 

But let's get serious here. 
Kirk is no Republican. He's a playboy who likes to save the day and revels in the glory. He's all about equal rights and free love, and will create those rights with a raygun as needed. Republicans have never been big on creating equal rights with military force. (They will defend existing beliefs with military force, but have never been ones to create new rights. It's just not their thing.) Kirk was all about expansion and the unknown. Republicans like to keep things close to home and traditional. 

Picard is not a Democrat either. He's a Lincoln Republican. He's a diplomat, well-read, and academic in his decisions. He wouldn't make a good politician, but he'd be a great U.N. ambassador, balancing the needs of different cultures so that everyone can live in peace and justice. 

Riker would be a Republican. He's all about defending his beliefs and isn't afraid to pull out a gun. 

Spock and Data would be Libertarians- straight up, unbiased, literal readings of the law without emotion. Spock would be great on the Supreme Court. You know, if he were human enough. 

But that's just my take on things. 

As one friend put it, "The entire argument is moot, albeit interesting; politics is the art of managing limited resources to fulfill unlimited wants. Both captains live in a world of unlimited resources."

He has a point. 

Now, if Cruz were to follow up his NY Times interview with a blog post further expounding upon his Star Trek rational, he could conceivably win over a few Trekkies. And considering his ranking in the polls this week, that couldn't possibly hurt. 

Click to enlarge. 

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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Are Americans Happy With Their Country?

I don't know how reliable the survey source is, but the results are still interesting. 

A recent online poll of more than 2,000 adults by TransferWise, a UK peer-to-peer money transfer service, revealed that 35 percent of American-born residents and emigrants would consider leaving the US to live in another country.

This percentage greatly increases for those age 18 to 34. More than half of millennials, a whopping 55 percent, said that they would consider leaving the U.S. for foreign shores. Among them, 43 percent of men and 38 percent of women noted that a higher salary would be a factor in their relocation decision.

That all being said, only .001 percent of the population actually renounced citizenship in 2014.

If that many Americans are unhappy with the country, maybe the politicians should address the reasons why.

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