October 2012

The media refuses to protect us

Snickering, self-righteous conspirators

In the past several weeks I’ve seen at least three liberal columnists and several left-leaning newspapers distancing themselves from the President, if not criticizing him outright. I know the mainstream media is heavily invested in Mr. Obama. After all they’re responsible for creating him out of whole cloth and his own ego. If the President doesn’t get re-elected the media loses a great deal of credibility. They simply can’t do this because they’re going broke and retreating to the internet in an effort to stay in business.

France advances abortion-friendly law system

Their level of commitment to securing women’s abortion rights puts the U.S. to shame

This week, the French government implemented a change in abortion and contraception laws that will improve conditions for women overall.  They have decided that all abortions shall be fully reimbursed and that contraception will be available and free to minors aged 15 to 18. 

Though this is only a small increase in what the laws in place already were, it really highlights the extreme contrast between France and the U.S., pointing out to me just how backwards we are here in the states.

What should President Obama do now?

The crucial moments leading up to Election Day.

It is crunch time now with the tight race that is on. Fresh off an impressive third debate, the President will look to capitalize. As for the last debate, it is quite obvious that at this time it was only important to sway undecided voters.

The question is how many of those who are undecided actually watched? There was Monday Night Football and playoff baseball airing at the same time. There was also cleaning to be done and the kids' homework to be finished.

For Obama to win he needs to make sure he gets more Americans to cast their ballots. This is not going to be easy as we 'the world's most successful democracy' had a 57 percent voter turnout in 2008 which was actually the highest since 1968. Republicans are charged up as opposed to Democrats and it seems likely that the low-income earners (Obama voters mostly) may need to be really convinced to exercise democracy's greatest privilege.

President Obama has been aggressive and has criticized the Romney campaign quite a bit. But Democrats might want to urge the President to not come off sounding so desperate. This has cost incumbents in previous elections.

Making education fun can spark a generation

Education funding may not be the whole issue here.

Going into Election Day, both candidates recognize how vital education is and the role it plays in the growth of the U.S. economy. The funding for education has to be increased, but money may not be the answer all of the time.

Every so often, kids get tempted with the dream of quick money and stuff that seems easy. Like the misconception that business degrees mean flashy cars. Government and the media plays a big role in this. Kids can usually name several movie stars and musicians, but almost no physicists. Herein lies the problem. Talking about physicists, let's look at a STEM field like physics, for example.

I abandoned my dream of becoming a physicist to focus on something that would supposedly prepare me for a lucrative career. After graduating college, I hear about a guy in my graduating class (physics major) making $250K in California. With tears in my eyes, I consoled myself in the hope of becoming a 'rocket scientist' on Wall Street or write for sites like this as a 'cough cough' lay person.

What’s the cruelest food you’ve eaten?

Yahoo! Health lists eight of the top cruelest foods.

If you talk to me about cruel foods—or food with a face—I really do understand. I do not eat meat frequently; in fact, I was a strict vegetarian before I became pregnant with my daughter. The cruelest foods, to me, are veal and foie gras, two so-called foods I will not eat. I also won’t eat lobster or any other live animal, and don’t see how anyone else could.

Inspiring girl dresses up daily

Stella Ehrhart is one admirable eight-year-old.

Halloween is my favorite holiday. I love to dress up as different characters or monsters, trying on new personas and having fun with my family. But Stella Ehrhart doesn’t wait for Halloween; she dresses up every day.

Ehrhart, age eight, selects a different female hero every day from the book 100 Most Important Women of the 20th Century, and dresses up as that heroine. Of course, Stella doesn’t stop there. At school, her teacher uses her outfits as inspiration to look up the female heroes online and to teach the class about them and why they are so important.

Rape is not a gift from God

And neither the hell are you, Richard Mourdock.

If you haven’t heard yet, Richard Mourdock, a Tea Party Republican candidate for Senate, made a statement so heinous yesterday several people I know broke things after hearing him say it. Okay, so did I.

Mourdock said that women should be forced to carry their pregnancies to full term from a rape because said pregnancies are a “gift from God.” Let me tell you something, Rich. Can I call you Rich? My middle name, Jean, literally does mean “gift from God,” so you can feel free to use that one. But a rape, or a pregnancy resulting from rape—which accounts for at least 32,000 pregnancies a year, by the way—is no gift. Are you that stupid, or simply that cruel, Dick? Can I call you dick?

Gunslinger vs. mudslinger

Clint's epic role

Thinking back to the Republican Convention of 2012, I still am enthralled by the presentation of “The Empty Chair” as presented by Hollywood icon Clint Eastwood.  On literally a couple of minutes notice, without notes (or teleprompter in President Obama’s case), Mr. Eastwood gave an extemporaneous performance that was as entertaining as it was brilliant. 

Clint is 82 years old and is still lean, straight and strong.  He is also remarkably reminiscent of the parts he has portrayed in film for over 60 years.  He comes across as a humble, friendly and common man who is nonetheless confident and easy to get along with.  His performance also was testament to his intelligence, common sense and creativity.

Conservatives who think slavery is frickin’ awesome

Yeah, I wouldn’t vote for these people.

I’ve written before about conservatives who praise slavery, but lately it seems like they’re just coming out of the woodwork! Do you think it has anything to do with, I don’t know, the fact that our president is black and that a whole lot of people are sickeningly not okay with that?

Me, too.

So here’s your handy dandy list of conservatives who not only think that slavery was just the best thing since Country Kitchen, but also deserve to hear from you about their comments.

Senate Race Update: Everywhere

Lots going on with two weeks left

Massachusetts -- The "center of gravity" seems to have shifted in favor of Elizabeth Warren (D) in her challenge to Sen. Scott Brown (R).  Brown has not led in a poll since early October, and his revival of the issue of Warren’s use of alleged Native American background to her professional advantage appears to have fizzled.  But … Brown was a strong closer in his first race, and whatever lead Warren holds is narrow.

President Romney & Vice President Biden?

Will the 12th Amendment create a shotgun marriage?

We've discussed the possibility of an independent from Maine holding the balance of power in the U.S. Senate, and the possibility of the 2nd Congressional District of Maine holding the balance of power of the Electoral College.

But how about the Democrats forcing Vice President Joe Biden upon the administration of President Mitt Romney?

Senate Race Update: Pennsylvania

Is the Keystone State set to be the shocker on Election Night?

Most election years have at least one "shocker" in which the voters do what is genuinely (or at least generally) unexpected.  The potential for a "shocker" is certainly brewing in the Pennsylvania U.S. Senate race, where challenger Tom Smith (R) looks to be a real contender to dislodge Sen. Bob Casey (D).

Some typical hallmarks of a "shocker" are present in this race:

1.  A "fresh face"

Ireland opens its first abortion clinic

In a country that is heavily religious, an important first step for women’s rights

The city of Belfast saw the opening of what is the country of Ireland’s first abortion clinic. Naturally, in this highly religious country, there was some degree of outcry and protest.  About 200 people, both Catholics and Protestants, showed up in front of the clinic to demonstrate on opening day, though the protest was mostly peaceful - a far cry from some of the demonstrations we see here in the U.S.

Knights of Columbus Charity Group Funding fight against gay marriage

While millions of people are hungry, $16 million goes to making sure gays don’t have equal rights

The Knights of Columbus are a Catholic group of no small renowned, their number of members totaling somewhere around two million.  The organization does plenty to help with a variety of charitable causes, but they also like to spend their money to promote political agendas.  Apparently, more than $16 million of their dollars have been spent since the year 2005, all of it to fund anti-gay marriage movements.

Democrats thrilled about the recent two debates

Obama back on track.

A smiling Joe Biden managed to trump Paul Ryan in the Vice Presidential debate. I think Biden was faced with no choice but to be aggressive after a lethargic performance by President Obama in the first debate. Biden's smirks were disparaging to what Congressman Ryan had to say. Even though there was much made of Biden and his demeanor, he wasn't called out on it by Ryan and this made him effective according to Donald Trump.

Complete Second Presidential Town Hall Debate 2012: Barack Obama vs. Mitt Romney - Oct 16, 2012

Take action for animals

Sign these petitions for critters—and for humans, too.

Do you love animals—or women and clean water, for that matter? Here are a few ways you can take action this week and help some of your favorite people—and critters—out right away.

Click the following actions to lend your voice to causes you care about today.

Stop arctic drilling

No matter how many dying polar bears we witness every year, no matter how much more endangered our animals are, we still call for their blood with that awful “Drill, baby, drill!” slogan. This is revolting—especially since we have absolutely no clean-up plan or way to clean up drilling miss in the Arctic, and a spill would be catastrophic. Click here to ask that we not drill in the Arctic, now or ever.

Senate Race Update: Northeast

CT & MA remain close ... ME & NJ less so

As covered in this space before, the Northeast is providing an unexpected treasure-trove of interesting U.S. Senate races.

The race in Massachusetts was always expected to be tight, with incumbent Sen. Scott Brown (R) relying on his likeability and appeal, and law professor Elizabeth Warren (D) counting on the strong partisan edge and liberal tilt to the state.

Obama Versus Romney

The Contentious Debate

Dick Cheney called in to a conservative talk radio program to comment on Joe Biden’s performance during the Vice President’s Debate. One of Mr. Cheney’s primary criticisms was the manic manner demonstrated by Vice President Cheney while Congressman Ryan was speaking. Biden laughed—at inappropriate time, when conversation about the dead Americans in Libya was being talked about—made bizarre faces, smiled scarily with a mouth lined with rows of sharp, dazzlingly white teeth. Biden made clownish, exaggerated gestures throughout his downtime and forcefully attempted to insert himself into Mr. Ryan’s time to speak.

Illegal Immigrants and Obama

Honest Path to Citizenship

The Presidential Election of 2012 is three weeks away. Republicans are ironclad in their belief that Obama will drive us off the cliff; economically as a nation and financially as a citizen while all the time hurtling us toward Socialism with the lure of unemployment benefits, welfare programs, food stamps and free hospital/health care. Sure, this encourages illegal immigrants to come to this country by offering them the same benefits as citizens. Welfare programs of all types, free education, driver licenses are already being given to illegal immigrants. Even the right to vote is being fought for by the administration.