Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 163

On Politics
The Cincinnati Enquirer hosted a foreign reporter for 10 days regarding the election. During his time here, he attended local speeches by President Obama, Mitt Romney, and the First Lady. The article he wrote following the election is an interesting perspective. Because of where the reporter’s home and given the election results, the comments are also interesting.

Meanwhile, those suffering from Election Distraught Syndrome are signing petitions to get their state to secede, which is the conservative equivalent of a losing liberal saying they are moving to Canada. I’m still waiting on the person to exercise their promise of saying they were moving out of the country if Barack Obama won in 2008. Of course, the people do forget they have the individual right to secede, which means move AND denounce your citizenship.

On a similar theme, here’s an article about 6 bizarre election reactions.

Last week I wondered if winners would shy away from declaring mandates. Two days later, I read this quote from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY): We Republicans in the House and Senate think we have a voter mandate not to raise taxes. (Source)

Interesting, but to no surprise, Congressional Republican firm stance on no tax increases for the rich, which (to me) means they prefer to raise taxes on everyone. Although they are in a pickle, which could mean “It’s time to play Kick the Can.”

I like these words from conservative columnist Peggy Noonan: The Republicans worked hard but were less clear-eyed in their survey of the field. America has changed and is changing, culturally, ethnically—we all know this. Republican candidates and professionals will have to put aside their pride, lose their assumptions, and in the future work harder, better, go broader and deeper. (Source)

Gov. Romney’s recent account about blaming his loss serves as good evidence to support Peggy Noonan’s statement. Cheers to some as Gov. Jindal (R-LA) for  saying something sensible.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • Needy Nation Breaks Down after First Full Week without being Pandered to by Politicians
  • Report: Majority of Americans Now Eating One Consecutive Meal a Day
  • 5-year-old Girl Feels like She Just Wasted Whole Carousel Ride Waving to Dad
  • Nation Horrified to Learn about War in Afghanistan While Reading Up on Petreaus Sex Scandal
  • Kim Jong-Un Named The Onion’s Sexiest Man Alive for 2012

Interesting Reads

On Potpourri
Thanksgiving is next week in America. My wine recommendations for the Thanksgiving meal are Pinot Noir, Riesling, and Gewürztraminer because the flavors from green beans, sweet potatoes, and cranberries screw up wine pairings for this feast.

Cheers to my alma mater for making The Onion this week.

For those noticing the nested dolls in the first St. Petersburg post, this one made me laugh – plus, it could be a potential holiday gift for the hard-to-buy-for person in your life.

Thank you Viveka for this award!

There will be a Saturday Morning Classic Cartoon post this weekend.

More Ginger Ale Reviews
Thomas Kemper Ginger Ale: Smooth; ginger tasting not overpowering, but enough to linger; not spicy; creamy quality with a hint of vanilla to me; honey is an ingredient – I like it!

Blenheim Ginger Ale: With the initial taste, I thought sweetness with low ginger. The ginger taste is delayed and with a touch of spice – and lingered. Another good one!

Here’s a touch of jazz to send you into the weekend. Well, handbells and chimes jazz with a light touch of drums. Believe it or not, it works! Have a good weekend! In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 162

On Politics
Let’s see if winners shy away from declaring mandates or referendums.

Following the elections results (and to no surprise) Speaker Boehner (R-OH) and Minority Senate Leader McConnell (R-KY) made predictable partisan-based comments while Donald Trump made an ass of himself.

Do you recall the name Samuel Wurzelbacher? He made a splash in 2008 as Joe the Plumber. This year he was the Republican nominee in his Congressional district, for which he received 24% of the vote.

Interesting comments from people as devastated, disappointed, doomed, and my favorite, May God have mercy on this nation because we have walked away from His ways.

Too much credit is given to Ohio. After all, I don’t think many imaged President Obama winning without Ohio and Florida.

Preceding the election, many Republicans continually discounted polls by calling them biased. Some people forget that many polls are done by companies who have a vested interest in being accurate. Interestingly, the polls as an aggregate hit the target on this one.

On Wednesday, ABC published their list of 2016 candidates for both parties.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • Lone Doofus Waited 36 Hours for the Next C Train
  • Bored US Postmaster General Creates Beard of Stamps during Meeting
  • Only Person Area Man Recognizes on Ballot is Jill Stein
  • Gluten-Free Pancake Mix just a Bag of Sand
  • Lone Runner Mike Bloomberg Wins NYC Marathon
  • Man Who Eats Breakfast at Dunkin’ Donuts Every Morning and Enjoys “Saw” Films Allowed to Vote
  • 9 Brightly-Colored Tarantula Species Found

Interesting Reads
Darwin and Eyes
Book review about James K Polk’s presidency
Storms that changes history
What candidates won’t say
Goals and limits of science

On Potpourri
Our handbell choir plays this weekend. The tune, Fantasy on Restoration, isn’t easy for us, but we will give it our best. It won’t be familiar to your ear, but interesting. Although there is a lot of malleting in this piece, we don’t play it as fast as this recording, but we move at a good clip. I invite you to listen here.

Last week I had a burger with the following description: Fried Banana, Chunky Peanut Butter Cream Cheese, Jam and Smoked Bacon. Yep … a PBJ Burger that was tasty!

I was disappointed when nobody commented on the surprise visitor we saw in Estonia (yesterday’s post).

There will be a Saturday Morning Classic Cartoon post this weekend.

Going into the weekend, here is a video of collections of videos to music. I image you will recognize some segments. Enjoy and have a good weekend! In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

On Election Night 2012

It’s Election Night in America. I wrote this post several days ago with this night in mind so, at the time I publish this, the elections results are young and without a declared winner in the race for president.

While one party likes to walk around with the pocket Constitutions, all members of Congress swear to uphold it. The U.S. Constitution is an interesting document, but to me, the following are the three most important words: We the people.

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

We the People elect members to Congress to represent We the People in order to pass laws, control the budget, and exercise authorities granted by the Constitution.

We the People elect members to represent all people, which means not just the ones who voted for the elected; not an ideology; not a political party; not a religion, not a financial donor, not a special interest – but yes, to represent We the People.

We the People elect members to serve all people regardless of their faith, thus the elected are not to serve their religious preference. After all, the Constitution is quite clear regarding religion. Let the elected not forget that the Constitution lacks words as God, Creation, Christian, Jesus, and Lord (which only appears in the Signatory section).

Although Christian principles may have influenced the Founding Fathers, the Constitution does not declare the U.S. as a Christian nation. If the elected represent Christianity, what about the nonChristians? If the elected represents Christianity, which denomination will you represent? Then, what about the other Christians?

We the People are from all faiths and no faiths, therefore, our representatives should avoid submitting proposals on behalf of Christianity because what the church considers best for itself may not be in the best interest of We the People.

Representing We the People requires avoidance of firm ideology or a party each of these diverts attention from the needs of We the People. Adherence to a party or ideology silences We the People, and blocks the path to meaningful solutions.

Representing We the People requires conviction to represent the needs of the people who did not vote for the elected. After all, they too are We the People.

Representing We the People requires patience, the ability to listen, to desire to find the common good for all, to watch-out for and respond to human need that is beyond one’s self interests, party, or ideology.

Representing We the People requires discussing among yourselves to share ideas and concerns in order to work toward a solution for the common good – an idea that may be found in one side, the other, a compromise, or outside the grounds established by ideology, party, religion, self-interest, or special interest.

We the People need effective government to establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, to provide a common defense, to promote general welfare, and to secure liberty for all of We the People. Especially during this time, we need our elected officials to make difficult decisions – the ones that test their gut against their party, their ideology, their religion, their self-interest, their donors, and special interests.

Along with a president, on this day we elect all 435 members of the House of Representatives, and 33 members (approximately one-third) of the Senate. Their task seems simple, but I also know they will represent religion, a party, an ideology, self-interests, special interests, and donors over We the People – therefore, let me be the first to say the following about the newly elected, ‘Starting in 2014, throw the bums out. All of them! Clean house!” After all, We the People deserve better.

On Scoop Ohio

Although the final debate is in progress during the publishing of this post, I decided to make it a clean sweep – thus I did not watch. Nonetheless, this post is about the information that you don’t hear.

As anyone tracking the U.S. presidential campaign knows, Ohio is one of the key battleground states. As the country 17th state and our 18 electoral votes, we (unfortunately) lead the country in campaign ads. Nonetheless, with all the campaign reports from Ohio, this post is about information you may not know.

Visiting Ohio is visiting the world: Amsterdam, Athens, Baltic, Berlin, Cadiz, Calcutta, Dresden, Dublin, Dunkirk, Geneva, Genoa, Holland, Lebanon, Lima, Lisbon, Milan, London, Macedonia, Moscow, Ontario, Poland, Seville, Sidney, Toledo, Venice, and Versailles

Visiting Ohio is visiting the UK: Dover, East Liverpool, Glouster, Guernsey, Kent, London, Oxford, and Sheffield

Visiting Ohio is visiting biblical sites: Bethel, Bethesda, Damascus, Delphos, Goshen, Pisgah, and Shiloh

Visiting Ohio is visiting the USA: Albany, Baltimore, Buffalo, Fresno, Louisville, Nevada, Oregon, Reno, Syracuse, Washington, and Wyoming

Visiting Ohio for its many new places: New Athens, New Boston, New Breman, New Carlisle, New Concord, New Lebanon, New Lexington, New London, New Madison, New Metamora, New Miami, New Middletown, New Paris, New Philadelphia, New Richmond, New Springfield, New Straitsville, New Vienna, New Washington, and New Waterford; then toss in Newark, Newburgh Heights, Newcomerstown, Newport, Newton Falls, and Newtown

Visiting Ohio to climb the mountain towns of Mt. Carmel, Mt. Gilead, Mt. Healthy, Mt. Orab, Mt. Repose, Mt. Sterling, and Mt. Vernon (of which many are flat)

Visiting Ohio for people names: Amanda, Amelia, Ashley, Beverly, Bevis, Bryan, Clyde, Dayton, Felicity, Franklin, Geneva, Harrison, Heath, Hiram, Jackson, Kent, Logan, Lucas, Mack, Marion, Mason, Perry, Randolph, Ross, Quincy, Shelby, Sidney, Spencer, Troy, Warren, Wayne, and Willard

Visiting Ohio with a pronouncing guide

  • Berlin (BURR lin)
  • Lancaster (LAN ca ster)
  • Lebanon (LEB bun un)
  • Lima (LIE muh)
  • Milan (MY lund)
  • Moscow (MOSS cow)
  • Rio Grande (RYE o grand)
  • Russia (RUE she)
  • Toledo (toe LEE doe)
  • Versailles (Vur SALES)
  • Wooster (WUH ster)
  • I let you try “Gnadenhutten”

Visiting Ohio to visit colorful towns starting with Blue, Red, White, Green, Black, Brown, Yellow, and Orange

I have been to Coolville, but never to Hicksville

I am from a county named after a man with the first name Return

Upper Sandusky is south and west of Sandusky

Some guys fall so in love they forget if they Dayton people from Eaton, or … I’ll let you figure out the rest

For more past posts about Ohio, click here or click Ohio under Category in the sidebar

Enjoy the song and slide show. (Although I see several visual mistakes)

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 158

On Politics
I’ll take “No” to watching the VP debate.

Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) recently stated that Earth is 9,000 years old, creation happened in six days, and “All that stuff I was taught about evolution and embryology and Big Bang theory, all that is lies straight from the pit of hell. And it’s lies to try to keep me and all the folks who are taught that from understanding that they need a savior.” He can believe whatever he wants and can serve in Congress; but why is he a member of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology?

Here’s some advice for election debate watchers. Beware of giving the speaker too much credit for conviction in the answer. After all, it may be loaded with inaccuracies. Last week I provided links to four fact-checking articles regarding the first debate. They are very good reads.

I’m looking forward to the end of this election. Besides campaign 2016 just around the corner, although it is nauseating listening to politicians and their limited information, it is more frustrating hearing statements by voters who are clueless due to their bias, lack of knowledge, or both.

A CEO sending an email to his employees saying he will layoff personnel if the election goes a certain way is another prime example of this disgusting election.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • Millions of Excited Americans Gather to Watch Series of Short, Elaborate, Rehearsed Speeches
  • David Blaine Stunt to Push Public’s endurance to Limit
  • Area Man sitting quietly in Darkened Bedroom until Roommate’s Party Ends
  • CDC Mix-up Results in U.S. Children Receiving 1.2 Million Tequila Shots
  • Reince Riebus Forced Back into Ancient Puzzle Box after being Forced to say his Name Backwards
  • Mr. Autumn Man Walking Down Street with Cup of Coffee, Wearing Sweater over Plaid Shirt

Interesting Reads

On Potpourri
As a life-long Cincinnati Reds fan, I am distraught over the way the season ended. Congratulations to the San Francisco Giants.

Port wine is a wonderful dessert drink, so I wish I served as a judge for this contest. Fonseca, a port brand, produces Bin 27 – and has the Bin 27 Cookie Rumble inviting people to submit recipes for the best cookie to go with their port. Enter via the contest’s Facebook page.  Nonetheless, I publish this post with my Bin 27 in hand.

I also like ginger ales and ginger beers. I store relatively close to me recently opened that has quite the variety of this tasty treat; thus a bought several to get me started.

Do you hear about this softball-sized eyeball found on a Florida beach.

Another classic cartoon character is in the plan for Saturday morning.

Congratulations Le Clown, the blogging, French-Canadian superstar, for retiring your jersey.

This weekend is our handbell choir’s first appearance of the new season. We’ll play a pleasant, upbeat version of Give Thanks for two services. Hear the piece here.

In a recent performance, the Ohio State University Marching Band did a tribute to video games. As a retired marching band member, this one is fun to watch (although the audio is so-so). Have a good weekend! In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.