Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 262

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) loves to imply that the NSA gathering meta phone data is unconstitutional. Two points: 1) Only courts declare constitutionality (not senators, interest groups, or citizens) and 2) the panel of judges ruled the collection was illegal based on the limits of the law because the law didn’t authorize the NSA collection – so, the court did not rule the data collection unconstitutional. (ACLU vs. Clapper). Yes, another example of a politician pandering for votes with incorrect and misleading information that people believe.

For the record, I have no problem with the NSA gathering meta phone data (including mine) if it would have been in the original law. In the end, a rare bipartisan agreement got something done to replace the old Patriot Act with the USA Freedom Act, which clarifies the data collection.

Bush (FL), Jindal, (LA), Christie (NJ), Walker (WS), Kasich (OH), Huckabee (AR), and Pataki (NY) are current or former state governors and have either announced or are expected to announce their candidacy to seek the Republican presidential nomination. All but Bush and Kasich denounce the Common Core education standards. Three interesting points:

  1. Most previously supported the Common Core standards before they were against it
  2. Federal intrusion/overreach is a common reason
  3. These standards were not developed by the Feds, but were driven by governors and state leaders (and the majority of states are controlled by Republicans) … and now you know.

After hearing the news about the recent Biden family news, I was wondering which Republican would make a stupid comment. Congratulations to Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX). I maintain he planned it, practiced it, and purposely said it to a base that will laugh, and then it backfired. After all, politicians do that all the time. To be fair, at least he apologized. But come on, he or none of his advisers thought of the situation?

Given the wide swath of current and potential Republican candidates and the dilemma that causes around the debates, I say put them in groups of 4-5. After all, should the people get a fair chance to see all of them? Besides, this field has much more to offer than the 2012 group.

ESPN is giving their Arthur Ashe Courage Award to Caitlyn Jenner, not Lauren Hill.

I applaud Jennifer Lopez’s support for the Children’s Miracle Network. In the commercial below, I find something quite odd near the end when she says, Put your money where the miracles are (while raising her hand.) Watch below, but seeing the still is enough. What do you think?

If you were given the Stupid Test, would you rather pass it or fail it? Why?

Even though I didn’t expect much this season, following my Cincinnati Reds has been painful.

For those who need a touch on the retired Monday Morning Entertainment, this one from Weird Al Yankovic cracks me up. Thanks Cayman!

Earlier this week I realized that with the post about June was my 12th in the series, (whereas I thought it was my 10th). Therefore, I doubt they will continue, so maybe I’ll move on to saluting the days of the week.

It’s time for a drink as Meals: The Musical returns next week, so all song titles must include a nonalcoholic drink in the song title. (Hmmmm … Any idea about what Act 7’s theme?) One caution: Make sure no alcohol is also in the title. (EX: Rum & Coke is not acceptable) Curtain time will be Wednesday, 9:30 pm (Eastern US).

I updated the Schedule page to reflect the latest changes, which include weekdays Monday/Tuesday and Wednesday/Thursday.

The Explore series continues this weekend.

This week gave us two new presidential candidates, thus The Onion provides their profiles: former Gov. Martin O’Malley (D-MD) and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC). Former governor and senator Lincoln Chafee (D-RI) and Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) also declared, but no profile yet. Gov. Jeb Bush (R-FL) will announce on June 15th.

Embed from Getty Images

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
Heartless monster walks out of local small business without buying anything
Parents worried children old enough to remember family vacation
Man at party comes crawling back to conversation he thought he could do better than
Pigeon that flew into subway going to need all his wits to get out of this one
Nation’s single men announce plan to change bedsheets by 2019
College allowing students individual commencement speakers to make ceremony acceptable for all

Interesting Reads
France honoring the Resistance heroes
Human migration
Genetics, breeding, and cows
Suspected spy pigeon
Death penalty in the US
A look at war from an insightful veteran and blogger who visits here 

To to send you into the weekend, a toast to June being Accordion Month – not with a polka, but actually a good version of a Lady Gaga hit for the ballroom floor. Which ballroom dance can you picture? Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

47 thoughts on “Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 262

  1. That Ted Cruz comment made my skin crawl when I heard it this morning. Democrat or Republican, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that making fun of a man who just lost his son, not to mention a wife and daughter years before, is so not cool.


      • Another example of politician being out of touch with real life? He uses that joke all the time, but someone/he should have realized it was inappropriate/insensitive with a death in the family. It’s going to be a loooong campaign season and I am predicting a lot of pain enduring it.
        Is there a petition for only permitting a 6-8 week campaign period for electing President?
        (And another one about “If you or a family member has run before or been elected to office, you are not allowed to seek election/run again” Please? Pretty please?)
        Thank goodness for Weird Al.
        Hope your weekend is delightful, Frank.


        • What’s irritating to me is that so many are entering the race when they know they have no chance. It makes sense once you realize they are only doing it to raise awareness of themselves for future book deals, speaking engagements, media/university careers, potential new jobs with major companies looking for influence, and all fancy parties and adoration….
          Not what was intended. It’s all broken.
          Maybe Molly should run for office…RC would let it go to her head and we’d all be making mousies and growing Hey-hey.
          Cheers ( and looking for those drinks next week…)


  2. Although you are correct that only the courts decide what’s constitutional and what’s not, if a court decided something is illegal, it’s also automatically unconstitutional.


    • X,
      First of all, a disclaimer … I’m not a lawyer … that said, I must disagree.

      1) If that was so, there would be a separate field of law called Constitutional Law

      2) “Unconstitutional” is something that is incompatible with the Constitution

      3) “Illegal” is something that is against the law

      4) Therefore, Unconstitutional and Illegal are not synonyms nor substitutes

      For instance, it’s illegal for a 16 year old to buy booze in Ohio, but it is certainly not unconstitutional.

      Again, I’m no lawyer, but I’m no buying your point. … and in the case I mentioned in this post, the court ruled illegal, not unconstitutional.


    • Fasab,
      Oh no … never thought I would be out because a few (like yourself) also made their own on Fridays. So, cheers to your effort and for continuing the tradition … thus pressure is on you to keep doing so. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’d rather pass it, if I’m stupid I’d like some kind of qualification to prove it, otherwise I might be stupid but not really know for sure.

        Here’s a test for you:

        What is the color of the sky?

        What is the color of a number two pencil?

        What is the color of stainless steel?

        What is the color of a leaf?

        Does a rose have thorns?

        Does a dog have ears?

        What is the first question I asked?


        • But does passing the Stupid Test mean you are stupid? After all, doesn’t failing the Stupid Test mean you aren’t stupid?

          Color of the sky and leaves are the same rationale … we see what they reflect, thus they absorb the colors.

          The color of the #2 pencil depends on the paint.

          Roses have prickles, not thorns … and yes …dogs have ears.


        • Okay, let’s go with passing the Stupid Test means you are stupid.
          The problem is that most of the profoundly stupid people I have met tend to be so stupid they don’t know they are stupid, in fact one or two think they’re really clever despite all the evidence to the contrary.
          So passing the Stupid Test would mean to them that they aren’t stupid although the administrator of the test would know it meant that they are.
          There, that got us nowhere 🙂


    • Cynthia,
      Good point about the Stupid Test … by it’s name, it seems it identifies stupid, thus passing it means one is stupid. What do you think?

      The Espy Awards are made for television – thus about ratings. Our local paper raised the Hill or Jenner question, but I was cautious because Hill was a local story that became national and global. However, on Friday, CNN had several guest on the show to discuss the Hill or Jenner question … to which I responded, Wow! In the end, I’m not surprised because ESPN is hoping for Jenner to appear – a ratings boost.


  3. Word Crimes is good every single time I listen to it! Loved the take on Lady Gaga though, that was quite good. No idea what dance would be approrpiate.

    The reads were interesting but I have to say, Human Migration was by far the most interesting today. As for the Stupid Test, truly it would depend on what it measured wouldn’t it? I am not surprised on the Arthur Ashe Courage award, I find the level of stupid on this one mind numbing but really, whatever.

    Ted Cruz, bah. He is things I would not pollute your lovely blog with. He is things I throw my shoes away after stepping in. He is without compassion, empathy or a heart. This slug of a man wants to lead the nation and there are people who support him. We are lost.

    Heartless monster crawling back to parents to get out of this one family vacation.


    • Val,
      Fabulous … Comments in the Shorts .. gotta love it.

      Being that Lauren Hill was a local story, Cincinnatians are a biased … but then I saw a group discussion on CNN regarding Hill-Jenner.

      Cheers to your combo and for keeping the Combo Challenge alive … and the take on the Lady Gaga hit would be a tango.


  4. Frank, glad your mentioned the weirdness and implied hypocrisy of the Jennifer Lopez clip touting the Children’s Miracle Network. I’m so used to celebrities doing this kind of thing that I automatically skip over such stuff. It’s an interesting trait of human nature to assume that success in one field automatically implies general wisdom. Thus, Donald Trump, inter alia.

    By the way, thanks for the ping-back on my post. 🙂


    • Jim,
      When J-Lo held up her hand with all those rings just didn’t seem to match the message … then again, maybe it was me.

      No problem on the ping-back … glad to do it because it was good mental floss. 🙂


  5. I agree with you that the GOP’s field of presidential candidates is far superior to the 2012 group.

    “Man at party comes crawling back to conversation he thought he could do better than” was a face hitter.


      • 9-9-9 is an example of why I think the GOP should take your idea of grouping 4-5 candidates together, but base it on their level of ridiculousness.


        • Tim,
          The networks and the party should take my recommendation without reservation … and then each candidate can decide if they want to make an ass of themselves … but in this field, I trust most won’t … but they aren’t immune.


  6. I agree J-Lo should have ditched the rings… because you barely notice the bracelet she is sporting…

    As the resident Grammar Nazi, I love the Weird Al ~ I watch it every time I see it!

    That accordion Gaga-Riff sounds like it could be used in a Tango? Loved it!

    Not touching on the politics ~ not just because I’m Canadian; I’m not into politics in general. I know, I should! I get my dose on Jimmy Fallon!


  7. I am so underwhelmed on all political fronts at this point, I can’t even focus. I willingly read a lot of opinions, but I am so far from engaged I just hope there will be one person I would be wiling to vote for. I am sure this is the first time in my life I have felt this level of disdain for the entire process. I’ve never tossed a coin to decide before…let’s hope it doesn’t come to that!

    I like the “Weird Al” video. And I had to watch Jennifer a couple of times to decide what it is you were probably referring to. And I’d seen it on television multiple times as well. I didn’t even notice the rings! I’d make a great detective, huh?


    • Debra,
      I imagine when Nov 2016 rolls around, you will have enough knowledge to either make a clear-cut selection or leave that part of the ballot blank … Yes, I have done that!

      Regarding the J-Lo commercial, for whatever reason, I noticed the phrase and the rings the first time I so (which was last week) … so I found it on YouTube for this post. Glad you enjoyed Weird Al.


  8. Politics – Our downfall.

    A lot of $$$ that could have gone elsewhere other than on that hand – eh?

    I saw the accordion & just had to play that video! 🙂


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