Stupid Ish

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Amidst the controversy of the Senate candidate saying legitimate rape doesn’t lead to pregnancy and then correcting his comments to mean “forcible rape,” another tragedy has been overlooked.  The wonderful Swedes have finally answered our longing question of how to balance the desire to not wear a helmet when riding a bike as it messes up our hair and clashes with our clothes with the desire to not have our brains strewn all over the sidewalk like a tossed cantaloupe.  They have invented the Hovding.  It looks like a neckbrace or one of those airport pillows.  

When the sensors are activated, the helmet expands like an airbag.  There is no clarity on whether the sensors might be activated by a hard bump or something.  That would be unfortunate.  Also, it could take time away from the actual ride having to force the helmet airbag back into its pouch.  But no matter.  You won’t be buying this anyway as it costs $600.  At that level of douchebaggery, you’re not buying this to ride a bike for real.  This would be funny to see someone have in a bar as they instigate fights and find themselves being snatched up. Bam!  Helmet comes out.  They are safe.  Except for their face.  But whatever.   

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So Here We Are

Here we are four years later.  Obama is running for re-election and Mittens has finally decided upon a running mate.  There weren’t that many viable options and no intelligent options at all.  Still, the picking of Paul Ryan was quite a move.  Exactly what sort of move is a different discussion altogether.  Ryan is smart.  Which to me only means he can articulate the foolishness that exists in his mind.  The Tea Party has  officially taken over the Republican Party.

I used to really respect Republicans and their ideas while I proudly wore my badge of being an Independent thinking I was open to either party’s agenda.  This really is no longer the case.  With this nomination, Republicans have shown me that, to take a overused Kanye West phrase, they don’t care about…well, anyone but rich people.  Maybe that’s too extreme but for the life of me, how can they keep proposing tax cuts for rich folks and government spending cuts that help middle class and poor people?  There is no justification for this stuff.  They are masters at language and so they do all those and call it pro-growth initiatives to jump-start the economy and help businesses.  I’m not saying that they don’t have the right to think what they think and want to dismantle the government.  But I am deeply saddened that so many (what I thought were) smart Americans can fall for the okie-doke and support this stuff en masse.  Poor folks are supporting rich folks getting more money and themselves paying more in the supposed name of freedom and “anti-socialism.”  Is it all based in hopes and dreams?  These poor folks hope one day they are rich and don’t want to pay less?  That’s all I can think of.  And these people don’t compromise on anything.  They sign pacts to NEVER raise taxes and force themselves into a corner where they can’t negotiate at all.  Even the elders of the party are like WTF is going on.

Ronald Reagan wouldn’t be able to fit in this party.  This ain’t no party for open-minded men, young or old.  Ish is ridiculous

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Rise of the Asians

An article this week highlighted a surprising fact (to me) about how Asians account for the largest group of immigrants arriving in the United States.  I’m very interested in seeing how this plays out in the next few years.

It also makes me wonder how the nation will respond as the demographics change.  People get worked into a frenzy about immigration, specifically Mexicans.  Much of this stems from fear about changing demographics, which manifests itself through complaints about jobs being stolen.  Granted, the definition of Asian is so broad, it includes several dissimilar groups.  However, I wonder if the demographics of the country noticeably changes, what will be the reaction of these “immigrant-fighters?”  What excuse will be used to draw the ire of the masses against them with the same intensity that currently exists for Mexicans?  People will lose their mind if they thing America is about to become China 2.0.  We are all for diversity until it threatens the makeup of who people see on an everyday basis.  This is especially true for the “REAL America” or the rural areas.  Major cities like NYC or LA already are quite diverse so the influx isn’t necessarily noticeable.  But when South Carolina gets a large number of Asians, then the uproar will begin.

How Asians impact politics will also be a major focal point in the future, especially if there is a consolidation of their voting bloc to one party or the other.  If it is split, the impact may be less relevant.

Either way, the future should be interesting.

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Right and Wrong, Right?

 

I recently read an article about the Vatican reprimanding American nuns for not focusing enough on homosexuality and abortion in America.  The article cites the Vatican as saying American nuns are “too focused on social justice and not enough on opposing abortion, euthanasia and same-sex marriage.”

Let me begin by saying this article isn’t to slander the Catholic church, but rather to share an issue I see in religious circles, especially Christian (Protestant and Catholic).  The political/social agenda we carry and expect our religious institutions to carry determines whether we see them as effective or not.  This is hardly new, I know, but it is interesting to watch it play out.  Churches and religious groups criticize one another and even themselves in this case for not carrying out the agenda mandated by the leaders.  The Christian right is another example of this.  What’s seen as “right” can shift over time (think the acceptance of Blacks as people, women’s rights, etc).  What’s even more interesting to me is the argument that the focus on social justice is, well, not wrong-rather not the most important “right” issue to fight right now.  Who decides what’s the righter right issue?  In my opinion it seems to be entirely driven by the media and social forces.  Of course there was a concerted effort by certain groups within religious institutions to bring about change like with the Civil Rights movement, but this hardly happened within the context of a completely or even half-way unified religious community.  I see it more so as people who were like-minded on the outcome they desired, were driven by religious fervor and brought their vision to pass.

Were the people who didn’t want to fight for Civil Rights as issue number one wrong?  No, not at all.  I take strong issue with the religious Right on the grounds that they’ve decided which issues they, and in their amazingly arrogant opinion, God cares about the most and imply that those who disagree are not aligned with God.  I think people can operate based on whatever motivating factors they want and have any issue they care for be the most important to them.  I can’t agree with anyone who thinks that their pet issue reigns supreme.  Let them make the change they see as most important and let others who feel whatever is most important do the same on their pet issue.  Maybe my “right” fight is wrong to you because your “right” fight is different than mine.  That doesn’t mean the fight I’m fighting is overall wrong just because it isn’t your top priority.  That’s the argument I reject outright.  Of course, when the two sides oppose each other on Biblical grounds as if God is schizophrenic, that creates whole other host of issues but that’s for another post.

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That Craaaaazy Cain!

Former Republican Presidential Candidate Herman Cain had a ridiculous article in the WSJ about returning to the Gold Standard.  I cannot believe that this is the guy who at one point was leading in the polls to be the Republican Presidential nominee.  I also cannot believe that he was ever allowed to be one of the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Kansas City Federal Reserve.  I think it speaks to the lack of available talent in the area.

Those are strong words but this guy says “think of economic growth as the result of two gears operating together—low tax rates and sound money. When both gears are fully engaged, the economy moves forward. ”  Forget employment rates, forget what’s happening in other economies, and forget any housing issue that could disrupt the economy.  Tax rates and sound money are what keeps the economy moving.  He chastises the Federal Reserve for  “raising and lowering interest rates and buying and selling assets at its own discretion” as if Ben Bernanke is just sitting around raising rates all willy-nilly without any forethought or purpose.  He says this manipulates the value of the dollar…which is kind of the point.

But then comes my favorite part: “We regulate time by making sure an hour is always a fixed quantity of minutes and a foot is always a fixed quantity of inches. The more complex a society, the more it depends on fixed and rigorously reliable standards.”  Yes, we regulate time itself apparently.  Congress, by an act at some point in its history decided a day was going to be 24 hours which just so happened to coincide with the rotation of the Earth on it’s axis, thank God.  Thank God Congress has not decided to make an hour 94 minutes or maybe even a different number of minutes depending on the day.  This is how time works in Herman Cain’s mind.  I’m not sure if he even understands how regulations really work.

He says that Washington goes “ballistic” at this suggestion.  President Obama had to be carried out of the Lincoln bedroom as he was destroying furniture upon reading Cain’s suggestion.  In Cain’s mind, his ideas are ridiculed because they are revolutionary, not stupid.  This is right in line with modern Republican logic making this guy the perfect running mate for Mitt Romney.

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Another Social Issues Election

With NC passing a constitutional amendment banning it, President Obama came out fully in support of same-sex marriage becoming the first sitting President in history to do so.  Romney came out on the same day and made sure to reiterate his anti-gay marriage/civil union stance.  Where it looked like this election would likely be about the economy, it is turning out to be a good ole fashioned, social issues election.  This means half of the South will lose all reasoning abilities and vote for Romney just to stop “the gays.”  I am from the South but I cannot understand how people can abandon every other issue over one or two.

I’m lying.  I do understand it.  I just find it foolish.  There is this notion that elections are votes on God’s will and you show your allegiance to God and what you believe for you by voting certain ways on the issue irrespective of how it affects others.  I have been in all out arguments with people on how I do not support the idea that we vote as if the government is church.  Do what is best for the people, believers and non-believers alike in the voting booth and live how you live at home.  It is irresponsible of any government official (and citizens in my opinion) to erect mandates and laws in line with how they are believe they are to live their individual life according to their religious principles on the masses.  If you think homosexuality is a sin, your law does nothing but take rights away from people who are still in sin according to you while you and your church celebrate.  That’s just stupid.  The Bible does not say that the Kingdom of God is America and will be ushered in by Congress.  I don’t care whose pastor said what; he hit you with a Kansas-City shuffle.

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NC, Stand and Be Counted

With the amendment to the NC Constitution defining marriage between a man and a woman seemingly guaranteed, it appears Republicans in the state want to make it clear where the state stands despite Obama winning it in 2008.  Standing somewhere is noble unless you are standing in the wrong place.  NC is standing in the wrong place here.  This amendment goes beyond gay marriage and affects civil unions, straight couples, etc.  I am always tickled to see people fighting battles on God’s behalf as if votes at ballot boxes count as spiritual warfare or something. I don’t understand it.

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