The Watering Hole, Thursday, April 26th, 2012: Odds & Ends, From Local to National

Let’s start off local and go on from there:

First: A follow-up to my recent mention of the local lack of enthusiasm for (or knowledge about) Tuesday’s New York Republican Primary. In Putnam County, just to the south of us, about 1500 people did their civic duty, a third of the number who turned out in 2008. Surprisingly, some voters cast their ballots for both Rick Santorum and New Gingrich. All in all, about 30% chose “Not Mitt RMoney.”

Second: Fanning outward a tad, five Democrats are now vying for the opportunity to unseat U.S. Representative Nan Hayworth (R-NY19.) Although this article from the Southeast-Brewster Patch is a few months old, it’s a very informative rundown on four of the five campaigners, who had participated in a forum back in January. The issues discussed (as seen in the article), all reflect concerns that are national in scope. (Note: Wayne and I met one of the candidates, Matt Alexander, at the local Dems holiday party back in December, and had a good chat with him. Nice guy, well-spoken without being ‘slick.’)

Third: Still focused on New York State, but, again, with national implications: For at least the 5th time, a medical marijuana bill should be introduced shortly in Albany. Apparently, this particular bill, at this particular time, may have a ghost of a chance; even the Wall Street Journal seems to believe there’s a glimmer of a possiblity. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that New York becomes the 17th State (plus the District of Columbia) to legalize medical marijuana.

Next: A Newsmax.com article regarding former President Jimmy Carter’s comments about Mitt Rmoney; in another Newsmax article, Reince Priebus tries to wax enthusiastic about Mitt RMoney and the Republican chances in November.

Finally, just for laughs: a link from Newsmax led me to this too-funny-to-be-taken-seriously video. I could only watch about five minutes of it, but I found it pretty goofy – hope you do, too.

This is our daily open thread — What’s on your mind today?

The Watering Hole: 4-4-12: Cheney Announces Presidential Bid

What, me worry?

Fresh out of the recovery room following his heart implant transplant, former Vice President Dick Cheney announced his candidacy for the Republican 2012 nomination for President.

“This current crop of candidates is pathetic.” Cheney announced at his press conference. Not one of them are qualified to pick up where I, where President Bush and I left off.”

When asked about Romney’s delegate lead going into the Convention, Cheney brushed it off. “Look, Romney’s the kid nobody wanted, but they’ve been stuck with him because everyone else sucked. His delegates are gonna leave like rats abandoning a sinking ship, now that they can choose a real man…one who’s been there, done that, one who knows what it’s like to bomb a country back to the Stone Age in a war sold to the American people like it was some sort of action-hero movie plot.”

Cheney then launched into an attack on President Obama for cutting and running in Iraq and for daring to even talk about shutting down Guantanamo. “Thank God the Republicans in Congress prevented Obama from closing that prison. Guantanamo is the best weapon we have for instilling fear in political opponents…I mean, those Islamic Terrorists who want to destroy the American Way of Life.”

When asked who he might pick for a Vice Presidential candidate, Cheney was quick to reply, “I ain’t gonna pick no damn Palin, that’s for sure. Actually, I’m favoring Jeb Bush. After all, last time we had a Bush and a Dick. It’s only right that this time it’s a Dick and a Bush.”

OPEN THREAD.
HAVE AT IT!

The Watering Hole: Tuesday April 3, What to watch out for..

…tonight:

As Romney seems to be The Inevitable one now, there are a few things that we still can watch out for in the primaries.

Turnout. If I am correct turnout will be low. As in: Really Low. Mitt Romney is not an inspiring candidate at all, not for the Republican base. Nor for anybody, except maybe for those making 200’000 plus, I dare say.

Santorum is just running his mouth now, but not much else. I can’t see any indication that the Santorum supporters are fighting back, I cannot see much trace of them anymore in the comments sections where they used to hang around.

Paul? Well, nuff said.

Gingrich? Well, nuff said indeed.

Watch out for other races, too. Incumbicide is rampant right now. There may be a few surprises coming on this side.

…in November:

That no Republican gets the White House for a while. Honestly, if it is only to avoid further activist Supreme Court judges.

A whole set of polls can be found as usual here at realclearpolitics. Nevermind they are really conservatives, when it comes to politics I want to see what the other side is thinking and be prepared for the worst case.

This is our Open Thread. What do you think?

The Watering Hole: March 17 – Saint Patrick

On this day in 461 A.D., Saint Patrick, Christian missionary, bishop and apostle of Ireland, died at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland.

Much of what is known about Patrick’s legendary life comes from the Confessio, which he authored. Born in Great Britain to a well-to-do Christian family, Patrick was captured and enslaved at age 16 by Irish raiders. He worked as a herder For the next six years in Ireland. Following a voice he heard in a dream he escaped, sailed to Britain and was reunited with his family.

Patrick seemed to hear the voices of Irishmen pleading with him to return to their country and walk among them once more. He studied for the priesthood and ultimately Patrick was ordained as a bishop. Arriving in Ireland in 433, he began preaching the Gospel and converted thousands of Irish and built churches around the country. After 40 years in Ireland Patrick died on March 17, 461 in Saul the site of his first church. As time passed, the Irish began to observe the day of Saint Patrick’s death as a religious holiday

Since then countless legends have grown up around Saint Patrick. For one, he is credited with driving the snakes out of Ireland.

This brings me to the point of why I started this post. If Saint Patrick drove the snakes from Ireland, why can’t he be resurrected and do the same with the GOP in America? Aren’t they equivalent to the snakes of Ireland?

Of course, Saint Patrick had a slight advantage – reptiles never entered the evolutionary record on the Irish land mass and had not crossed the water barrier from England.

We can always hope.

Oh,and lest I forget, Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!

This is our Open Thread. It is your time to rant!

The Watering Hole, Thursday, March 15th, 2012: Who Said What?

You never know what you’re going to find at Foreign Policy magazine online. Recent issues contained two items which I decided to use for today’s offering: one somewhat humorous, one not so much.

The ‘somewhat humorous’ one is a fairly new feature at FP, entitled “Who Said It?” This particular version is “Grand Ayatollah or Grand Old Party?”, by Reza Aslan, who opens the article with:

“One is a religious fanatic railing against secularism, the role of women in the workplace, and the evils of higher education, as he seeks to impose his draconian moral values upon the state. The other is the supreme leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

Rick Santorum

Grand Ayatollah Khamenei of Iran

Aslan’s quiz lists nine quotes, asking “Who Said It?”, Santorum or Khamenei. The answer is given on the next page within the article, where the subsequent quote is then listed. See how you do in this quiz!

The second article, the ‘not so humorous’ one, is by Stephen M. Walt, and lists the “Top Ten Media Failures in the Iran War Debate.” A few key observations by Mr. Walt, although by no means the most important or insightful ones in his article, include:

“…when prominent media organizations keep publishing alarmist pieces about how war is imminent, likely, inevitable, etc., this may convince the public that it is going to happen sooner or later and it discourages people from looking for better alternatives.”

and

“A recurring feature of Iran war coverage has been tendency to refer to Iran’s “nuclear weapons program” as if its existence were an established fact. U.S. intelligence services still believe that Iran does not have an active program, and the IAEA has also declined to render that judgment either.”

Mr. Walt’s article is yet another illustration of the deficiencies of today’s ‘mainstream media’, which has, for quite some time, deplorably failed to serve or inform the public. :(

This is our daily open thread — so, what’s on your mind?

The Watering Hole: March 10 – Jean Calas

Jean Calas was a French merchant living in Toulouse, France, famous for having been the victim of a biased trial due to his being a Protestant. In France, he is a symbol of Christian religious intolerance. His sole sin was trying to mask the suicide of his son, Marc-Antoine, as a murder. He was charged with the murder and died on March 10, 1762 on the wheel. Voltaire was successful in exonerating Jean Calas (posthumously ) of all charges. His family was paid 36,000 Francs by the king in compensation.

Jean Calas tortured for nothing more than his religious beliefs

Religion was specifically excluded from government in the Constitution. What disturbs me is that the Republican Party is trying to foist religious values into American law. This can not be condoned for any reason.

Could religious dogma endanger the rights of Americans? The “War on Women” offers one step towards this slippery slope! I often wonder if any Republican actually has a mother.

This is our Open Thread. Please feel free to offer a counter argument. You can also spill your guts.

The Watering Hole: Super Tuesday, March 6th – Is this really important?

Image found at Funny Pictures

In a way the Republican Primaries tonight are important, they will need a nominee eventually. Presumptive Candidates fall all over each other in Marx-Brothers-Sans-Brains fashion and it is more or less entertaining. Or, it would be entertaining, if this wasn’t supposed to be the choice of the man who was to lead one of the World’s remaining superpowers. The last time around they have presented us Sarah Palin and we thought it was a horrible abberration. This time around they stacked the whole deck with similar dunces and treat the world to a first class train crash to watch.

On the other side of the intellectual divide there is this cool and collected man, doing what needs to be done for your country in a very pragmatic and undogmatic way.

For many Europeans the re-election of President Barack Obama is a no-brainer. If we seriously look at the difference of the four vs the one, the Republican Primaries tonight are not really important after all.

This is our Open Thread. What is important to you?