Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 177

On Politics (but not a short)
The Founding Fathers designed Congress to be a public forum for debate. As a group of 13 Republican senators threatens to filibuster the US Senate from debating any gun control legislation, Senator McCain (R-AZ) asked, “What are they afraid of?”

Then (in a procedural vote), and after an agreed-upon proposal between a Democrat and a Republican regarding background checks, 24 Republican senators voted to block debate on any gun control legislation.

Because this group’s action is a blatant attempt to undermine a national conversation while hiding behind a weak, limited view of the Constitution, they obviously have forgotten that according to the Constitution, the US. Supreme Court determines constitutionality – NOT the United States Senate.

In addition, the record shows that in the DC vs. Heller decision (a case about handguns), Justice Scalia (a strong conservative) did not close the door to government intervention on gun issues when he wrote, “the (Second Amendment) right was not unlimited”. Therefore, for this group of senators, I yield to this great American orator.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • Stock photo model scout finds something special in man in business suit with arms crossed
  • Man not certain of names of his coworkers
  • Waters tested as 12-year old says “Shit” in front of mother for first time
  • Teen boulder can’t wait for landslide to put it into ravine where “they get it”
  • D-battery elected to Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame
  • Stripper thinks customer flirting with her

Interesting Reads
Thomas Jefferson Center Muzzle Awards (a good headshaker)
The art of good writing by columnist George Will
Columnist Kathleen Parker on reconciliation
Book Review: The Complete Phillip Roth
Scientist Richard Feynman’s words on science and religion
America’s pooping technique is wrong
Shit Happens according to blogger Archon (not related to the previous read)

On Potpourri
I’m a firm believer in the need for educational reform, but I also realize that “education reform” is an oxymoron. I appreciate this recent article, which I will pair with this past post of mine.

Congratulations to the University of Louisville Cardinals for winning the NCAA Basketball Championship. Unlike in college football, at least basketball has a legitimate champion … and unlike last year, I do not have to declare the basketball championship as invalid.

Monday was an interesting day with the passing of Margaret Thatcher and Annette Funicello. Here’s an interesting read about five myths regarding the Iron Lady, plus a tribute to the popular 60s star.

My stats here have been pathetic, but I keep plugging away.

Coming sometime this week: Time: The Musical – Act 2. After this highly successful opening act, it’s time to prepare. Participants may recall that Act 1 involved posting videos of songs with “Time” in the title. However, Act 2 is Time: A Specific Time – thus the song title must include a specific time in the title – not the lyrics, not the performer, not the meaning – the title. Do your research as I hope to open Act 2 sometime this week.

There will be a Saturday Morning Cartoon post this weekend … and it will feature a cartoon icon.

Because our handbell choir plays this weekend, I’ll send you into the weekend with a beautiful arrangement of How Can I Keep from Singing, which has an interesting “singing bell” technique with a dowel rod moving along the rim in a similar manner of getting a wine glass to sing with a finger.

Have a good weekend! In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 165

On Politics
It was interesting to discover that some members of the House of Representatives have sued the Senate over their filibuster rules. I believe a court heard the case earlier this week. Here are two resources: Politico and the plaintiff’s blog.

As some in Congress want to pass the fiscal cliff responsibility to the next Congress, I ask, What about all the time you wasted in 2012?

Many of the cranks want to blame the fiscal cliff on President Obama; yet the Constitution clearly states that fiscal matters  are Congress’ responsibility.

Here’s an interesting article about the fiscal cliff and the debt limit from an economist I enjoy reading.

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) resigned to lead the Heritage Foundation. Good riddins’.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • 15-year-old trailer park duchess announces pregnancy
  • Apple promises to fix glitches in map software by rearranging Earth’s geography
  • Recent Powerball winner already divorced, bankrupt
  • Congress arrested on manslaughter charges
  • UN agency says 2012 celebrities hottest on record
  • Pope tweets picture of self with God

Special thanks to two readers who submitted some of their Onion-esque headlines on Wednesday.

  • Curmudgeon-at-Large for combining two: Obese salmon did not see Mark Walberg’s sex change coming
  • Mobius for one from a reference later in this post: Scientist steals Pat Robertson’s Children after big fight

Interesting Reads

On Potpourri
An Addendum: Take time today to remember 71 years ago – Pearl Harbor.

Stats Review: November 2012 closed as the fifth best month; plus last week was   strong.

Thursday’s birthday celebration for El Guapo was a lot of fun … and my first time participating in a big event. More importantly, I’m confident that he had a lot of fun.

I’m due to change my header here, so I’m in the planning stage.

This week I watched a fantastic 2010 edition of NOVA (PBS): Hunting the Edge of Space: The Ever Expanding Universe. Images from the Hubble telescope capture my attention.

I’ve criticized Rev. Pat Robertson on more than one occasion. After all, he makes it easy to do. However, this comment surprised me. Thanks Mobius!

The handbell choir plays again this Sunday, so here’s an audio to the brisk Jig on Morning Song. Enjoy.

A Saturday morning classic cartoon post returns this week.

Let’s go into the weekend with by saluting the life of a jazz legend that passed away this week, Dave Brubeck Have a good weekend! In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.