Monday, October 27, 2008

I find this funny

Over 100 newspapers around the country have endorsed Senator Barack Obama for President, so one more newspaper doing the same is hardly news. But I do find this particular endorsement rather funny, because of its source. A couple of days ago, the Anchorage Daily News endorsed Obama in their editorial column: Obama for President. Now the piece itself probably focuses more on McCain's shortcoming than it does on Obama's strengths, but to have the largest newspaper in Alaska shun their native daughter for Obama/Biden just strikes me as so funny. I liked this assessment:
Yet despite her formidable gifts, few who have worked closely with the governor would argue she is truly ready to assume command of the most important, powerful nation on earth. To step in and juggle the demands of an economic meltdown, two deadly wars and a deteriorating climate crisis would stretch the governor beyond her range. Like picking Sen. McCain for president, putting her one 72-year-old heartbeat from the leadership of the free world is just too risky at this time.
It is certainly a risk I'm not willing to take.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Just for fun

I love this song, but I also love misheard lyrics. This is a wonderful song even though I can't understand more than a handful of the words he says. His voice is just so moving he could actually be saying what this video suggests and it would still sound great. But in the spirit of fun, here are the misheard lyrics of Yellow Ledbetter by Pearl Jam

Thursday, October 16, 2008

I have to wonder

After watching Obama's "Joe the Plumber" encounter on a YouTube clip, I have to wonder exactly what Joe's real story is. It seems to change from encounter to encounter. In fact, just listening to him talk, it sounded to me like he was making the whole thing up. That he was really proposing a hypothetical situation, not really describing his current situation.

UPDATE: As it turns out, I was right.

When he first begins to speak to Obama, he says that he is thinking about buying the plumbing business that he works for, or something to that effect, but it was clear that he did not yet own the company. Then later, when he was talking to FOX news, he seemed to give the impression that he already owned a plumbing company. In fact, I was reading this article this morning in the Washington Post: 'Joe the Plumber' Becomes a Fixture that said:
There has been a big media market for the plumber in recent days. On Tuesday, just a day after his Obama handshake, Wurzelbacher told Fox News host Neil Cavuto that he lives in a "simple middle-class home" and doesn't want to upgrade because he'd rather put his money into his business.

"I don't want to keep up with the Joneses, and two, I just couldn't really afford a bigger house. I'm going to have to work harder to make that company go. I want to put more trucks on the road, and his tax increases kind of hurts that aspect," he said.
I could be wrong, but saying "he'd rather put his money into his business" seems to indicate that he currently owns one. However, at the end of the article it states:
The Washington Post was unable to reach Wurzelbacher and was unable to verify whether he is a licensed plumber through a search of the database of the Ohio Construction Industry Licensing Board.
I hope that there will be continued fact checking on Joe the Plumber's story.

Monday, October 13, 2008

I think I've had all I can take

After tonight's episode of Heroes I think I'm done with it. Ever since the new season started I've had the feeling that Heroes was more like a Soap Opera than anything else. In fact, I've been calling it "Days of Our Lives with super powers." At least tonight they did explain why Linderman was able to still be alive (illusion created by Daddy Parkman), but when they had Hiro kill Ando that was more than I could take. Even if they explain it away as an illusion or some other lame excuse, it is just not something that I want to watch. It is just not enjoyable anymore. It seemed like something new and interesting when it started. It went downhill some last season, but was still interesting. This time around it is just stupid. They are suggesting things that just don't follow from previous episodes. And the fact that they are turning the good-guys into bad-guys, and vise-vera, is also very soap-opera-esque. I didn't like it on Days of our Lives and I don't like it on Heroes.

This article over at ("How to Heal 'Heroes'") has some interesting ideas of how to fix it, but I just don't think I can stomach the trip there even if they decided to try. I particularly liked this comment from the article
If someone were to try hard enough, you could "fanwank" an explanation for these and the various other elements of bizarre behavior on the show. But the point is that you shouldn't have to fanwank anything.
To that I can only say, "Amen, brother"

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

My current predictions for the electoral outcomes

I was playing around at the NYT website and decided to make a map for the electoral outcomes. These are my meager predictions. Take them for what they are worth, which isn't much. I end up with an Obama win at 293 and McCain with 245. It was tough to decide on most of the toss-up states. I feel like Colorado will go for Obama, but if he only takes Colorado (of the states the NYT deems as toss-ups) then it will end in a tie. That would not be good.

I couldn't agree more

I just finished reading Richard Cohen's op-ed column in today's WaPo online, This Debate's Biggest Loser, and I think he makes an excellent point. After enumerating Palin's lies and shortcomings in the VP debate, he concludes with this observation:
Ah, but the scorn, approbation and ridicule that would have descended on Clinton -- I can just imagine the Journal editorial -- have been withheld from Palin. Much of the mainstream media, grading on a curve suitable for a parrot -- "greed and corruption, greed and corruption, greed and corruption" -- gave her a passing grade or better. I agree with Palin. It's the mainstream media that flunked.
It seems as if simply because Palin did such a horrendously terrible job with her interviews with Katie Couric, the fact that she kept her head up and didn't wet herself during the debate was grounds to say she did an okay job. She passed the test. I don't think anyone is saying she passed with flying colors, but she passed. It is ridiculous.

And as an adjunct college professor, I particularly appreciated this statement Cohen made in his column:
[. . .] repeated mentions of "greed and corruption on Wall Street" (Who? Be specific. Give examples. Didn't anyone here go to school?) [. . .]
Heck, about half of my ANG students couldn't write a proper essay with actual examples on their last exam. But you know what, they didn't pass either.