Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 224

On Politics
From the partisanship-clouds-the-issue file, some Republicans say that the only thing that can explain Bowe Bergdahl’s release is that US negotiators are working for Al-Qaeda.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) loss in the primary shocked the US political landscape. Oh boy … and I wonder what the Democrats in that district are saying now? Meanwhile, Mr. Cantor will probably triple his salary.

David Brat (R-VA) is the one who beat Cantor. When asked about his stance about raising the federal minimum wage, he responded, “Um, um, um, I don’t have a well-crafted response on that one.” … now that’s an interesting response by an economics professor.

Problems in Washington are many and obviously deep and problematic, but I’ve narrowed it down to two … Nope … not Obama and Biden … Not McConnell and Boehner … Nada to Pelosi and Reid … and surely anyone named Bush or Clinton … Nope – not any combination of the previously named, nor even the lobbyists. The two biggest problems are the Democratic and Republican parties!

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
Parents at graduation to celebrate child’s last accomplishment
Residents plagued by roving pack of feral celebrities living in Hollywood Hills
Cable companies announce they are just going to take $100 from everyone
Man nothing but lumbering golem of reward cards
Child entertained for 5 minutes by plastic toy that will take 1,000 years to biodegrade

Interesting Reads
The last interesting centrist
Interesting article about climate change from a conservative paper (the title is worth a peek)
Foreseeing the digital future in 1982
The answer to Does Size Matter?
Mathematics: patterns and structures
Photo gallery of Detroit’s faded beauty

On Potpourri
Regarding my eye issue, although problems still exist, I can honestly say my issue is better than it was last Friday.

Another unexpected crazy week in the books also means a delay in the next Saturday Morning Cartoons.

The music for Life: The Musical – Dreams was outstanding! Many thanks, thus I invite all to return to the post to listen. I even added a song in the comments for everyone! (Click here for the great collection)

Your weekend celebrations

  • (Weekend) Banana Split Days, Superman Day, Duct Tape Days
  • (Fri) Blame Someone Else Day, Work at Home Father’s Day, Poultry Day, Kitchen Klutz Day, Lobster Day
  • (Sat) Dollars Against Diabetes Days, Bourbon Day, Blood Donor Day, Juggling Day, Knit and Crochet Day, Magic Circles Day, Missing Mutts Awareness Day, Pig Callers Day, Strawberry Shortcake Day
  • (Sun) Global Wind Day, Family Awareness Day, Father’s Day, Husband Caregiver Day, Magna Carta Day, Native American Citizenship Day, Nature Photography Day, Elder Abuse Awareness Day, Worldwide Day of Giving, Pet Fire Safety Day, Go Fly a Kite Day

To send you into the weekend, here’s an old tune from a group whose original name was The Mars-Bar … but the people at the Mars (candy) Company were not happy campers. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 111

On Politics
Here’s my advice to the Capitol Hill representatives squawking about their pay – Don’t run for re-election!

I know that budgeting for FEMA regarding unpredictable natural disasters is a blind wild guess. On the other hand, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) says that additional funding for disaster relief for Americans must come from cuts elsewhere in the budget. To Mr. Cantor I ask, Are you treating the expenditures $10 billion dollars per month for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan with the same lens? Of course, not, so stop being an ideological twit.

This troubles me: The number of people believing that each state (recently Missouri, Vermont, etc) is responsible for their own disaster relief, thus nothing coming from Feds.

President Obama announced that his upcoming jobs proposal will have bipartisan appeal. I say Good luck with that because the Republican pattern is to disagree with him after he uses one of their ideas.

I’ve been saying for some time that Gov. Romney was only the GOP front-runner because Republicans didn’t have many alternatives, thus view him in a similar light as John McCain. Meanwhile, the current polls with Gov. Perry in the field is bearing that out — well, at least for now.

Recent Quinnipiac Poll: favorable, unfavorable, haven’t heard enough

  • Rick Perry: 22%, 23%, 55%
  • Mitt Romney: 36%, 27%, 35%
  • Michele Bachmann: 26%, 36%, 37%

Partisan wrangling and gridlock has been part of Washington for a long, long, time. What is new is the public’s awareness through the availability of information.

I remind Speaker Boehner that it is Week 34 of the Boehner-led House without a jobs bill. To quote Speaker Boehner, “Where are the jobs?”

Interesting Reads
Kathleen Parker on Rick Perry
Star Tribune (Twin Cities) on Michelle Bachmann
Kathleen Parker on a Political Diva
Relating Neanderthal Sex and the Immune System

Interesting Headlines I Saw this Week on The Onion
Failing US Economy No Reason to Stop Investing in Print Media, All Experts Agree
Charman Introduces New Disposable Toilet Paper
Neurosurgeon Gets Heckled from Observation Deck
Small Town UFO Scare Revealed to be Alien Hoax
Enraged Man Fails to Destroy TV

Other Real Headlines of Note
City Pays Band not to Perform
Man had Sex with Inflatable Pool Raft

On Potpourri
Thoughts and prayers to all those affected by Hurricane Irene.

Last weekend at the driving range, I used all my clubs to hit about 100 balls. My shoulder feels good enough that I can play. Unfortunately, my work project has extended through September. Well, subject to change.

College football starts this weekend – and schools continue to demonstrate (in a variety of ways) that it is all about dollars! Meanwhile, I’m hoping at least one of my schools will have a winning record – but that could be a long shot.

Earlier this week I saw an image that amazed me – an aerial view of rice fields in China’s Yunnan province. Check out this Google Images search result.

Using headlines from last week about the new Martin Luther King Memorial, the following words touch me: Mountain, justice, equality, freedoms, respect, hope, quality, transcending, compassion, dignity, and rights.

I appreciate this closing statement from EJ Dionne:
We have rendered Dr. King safe so we can honor him. But we should honor him because he did not play it safe. He urged us to break loose from “the paralyzing chains of conformity.” Good advice in every generation — and hard advice, too.

In the words of Garrison Keillor: Be well, do good works, and stay in touch.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 36

On Smile – You’re on Candid Cantor
So House Minority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) says Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is “in another world.” Although I somewhat agree, let me explain more to Mr. Cantor. Yes, the left wing’s heads are in the clouds, but that is only the response to the right wing’s cranial insertion through the opening where the sun doesn’t shine – thus I’m thankful that moderates see situations for what they are while seeking grounded solutions. Our problem is that we have so little representation in Washington.

On Tough Numbers
If 250,000 new jobs were created each month, it would take 70 months to recreate the jobs lost in this recession. Ouch!

On Double Speak
Granted – double speak is the language of politicians. How about Senator Grassley (R-IA) calling for both meaningful health care solutions and contributions to defeat health care proposals? Senator, just continue keeping your head in your reading material during committee hearings – and stay relaxed – I don’t vote in Iowa.

On Health Care Reform
First of all, the GOP doesn’t want different health care reform – they don’t want it at all. So I wonder, if a plan passing, will GOP candidates campaign to repeal it?

As I said even before the debate stated, lobbyists will determine health care legislation. Let’s see … 6 lobbyists per legislator and expenditures around $400 billion. Enough said. For those wanting more, here’s a source tracking dollars on every member of Congress.

I added the Brookings Institute to the Resources links in the sidebar. Here’s a direct link to their information about the health care debate.

Not long ago I suggested an honest and truthful approach to the health care debate. In a recent column Leonard Pitts also likes the idea.

On White House Czars
Legislation is being drafted for regulating appointments by the White House that bypass Congressional approval. I for one would support this legislation but here’s my problem. Since actions by a Democratic president initiated the Republican reaction, what if a Republican president did the same thing – would the party lines switch places? You betcha!

On College Football Rankings
As I examine national polls and opinion rankings, it is obvious that the number of returning lettermen, expectations, and speculations are more important than games played. So why play the games? Oh … I forgot … the revenue.

On Ochocinco
Chad wanted to do the Lambeau Leap but didn’t want to disrespect Packer fans. Sorry Chad – By getting your wish you not only disrespected Packer fans, you disrespected the traditions of the game and the game for your own self-interest.  … and I’m a Bengal fan. I’m against anything you do to bring attention to yourself. Work hard, catch the ball, help the team, shut up, and no gestures on the field of any kind that draw attention to yourself.

On Handbell Music
Since I can’t find a video of this song, here’s a fast handbell piece our choir will be doing in several weeks. Actually with a title as Fanfare and Exultation, some may find it fitting for football, but marching handbells just doesn’t seem to fit – but I know a retired band director who misses marching band.

On an Entertaining Video
I know this is an old video and one that has been used as a hoax (for those thinking it was real), but I enjoy this musical animation.