25 November 2008

Dubai beach no place for funny business

Two drunken westerners were arrested for having sex on a beach in Dubai. They were subsequently convicted "for having sex outside of marriage, public indecency and drunkenness" and sentenced to three months in prison. The jail time was eventually dropped on appeal. 

I'm just going to go ahead and cross Dubai off my list of places to visit.

16 November 2008

Palin: What he said...

5. McCain made a huge mistake in picking Sarah Palin.

No subject is more likely to break up a dinner party early than the Alaska governor McCain chose as his running mate. Everyone not only has an opinion about her qualifications (or lack thereof) but also feels it necessary to share those opinions with anyone within shouting range.

Love her or loathe her, the data appear somewhere close to conclusive that Palin did little to help -- and, in fact, did some to hurt -- McCain's attempts to reach out to independents and Democrats. But just because Palin doesn't appear to have helped McCain move to the middle doesn't mean that picking her was the wrong move.

Remember where McCain found himself this past summer. He had won the Republican nomination, but the GOP base clearly felt little buy-in into his campaign. A slew of national polls reflected that energy gap, with Democrats revved up about the election and their candidate and Republicans somewhere between tepid and glum.

Enter Palin, who was embraced with a bear hug by the party's conservative base. All of a sudden, cultural conservatives were thrilled at the chance to put "one of their own" in the White House. In fact, of the 60 percent of voters who told exit pollsters that McCain's choice of Palin was a "factor" in their final decision, the Arizona senator won 56 percent to 43 percent.

For skittish conservatives looking for more evidence that McCain understood their needs and concerns, Palin did the trick. It's hard to imagine conservatives rallying to McCain -- even to the relatively limited extent that they did -- without Palin on the ticket. And without the base, McCain's loss could have been far worse.

From this.


12 November 2008

Minnesota election fun

Big write up in the WSJ about the recount shenanigans surrounding the Minnesota Senate race. 

I will admit with a little embarrassment that I supported our wrestler-turned-governor Jesse Ventura. I would have voted for him, but we had just moved to the cities and I didn't realize how easy it is to register at the polls. I liked his anti-status quo attitude and his desire to shrink government. In the end I think he was an experiment that didn't do a whole lot, but where government's concerned I'd typically rather see them do nothing than do something that costs more money.

As for the current race, I really hope we don't wind up with a comedian for a Senator. 

11 November 2008

About time

McCain comes out and says Palin didn't hurt campaign. Duh. He should have issues a statement earlier.

07 November 2008

So I was watching the news

last night before bed, and I was amazed to learn that the president doesn't actually have the power to affect the economy single-handedly. It was almost as if the news people were resetting expectations for the new president. I can't imagine why that should be. It's too bad they didn't stumble upon this epiphany sometime in the last year when they were content to blame every bad thing in the world on the 'Bush Administration'. 
I keep saying I'm going to quit talking about politics, and I keep not doing that. Oh well.

06 November 2008

Interesting thoughts on what the Republican party could do to attract youth

So what does the Republican Party need to do to get the youth vote back? If these Harvard students are typical (and perhaps they are not, as Harvard students are hardly a random sample), the party needs to scale back its social conservatism. Put simply, it needs to become a party for moderate and mainstream libertarians. The actual Libertarian Party is far too extreme in its views to attract these students. And it is too much of a strange fringe group. These students are, after all, part of the establishment. But a reformed Republican Party could, I think, win them back.
From here . 
Actually this would work to attract me back, too. Unless something like this changes, I'll just go ahead and vote libertarian or some other third-plus party going forward. 
I've been voting Republican for the past X years because defense and smaller government are key issues for me. And while I stand by their record on defense, the smaller government thing hasn't so much worked out.
I've voted GOP in spite of their social conservatism, certainly not because of it. I'm pro-choice. I'm fine with gay marriage. I'm a Christian, but it's not important to me that my representatives is or that they go to church. 

This seems

about right . I haven't agreed with everything President Bush has done, but I've never understood the bile and rage that he has inspired. I have always felt that he was straightforward and about as honest as a politician can be. I wish he had worked to shrink government instead of grow it. I'm not entirely comfortable with his evangelical tendencies, but I think he's done what he thought was right, and I give him a great deal of credit for his execution of the war on terror. He did not wreck the economy, that honor goes to the democrats who were in charge of Fannie and Freddie. It will be interesting to see how history treats him a few years down the road.

04 November 2008

Seriously ...

This  really sounds like something out of a cartoon .... What's scary is realizing I'm actually not cynical ENOUGH.

03 November 2008

A good person

Somehow I can't picture Senator Obama visiting anyone in the hospital without a full press contingent.