Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 147

On Politics
Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) proclaims to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and then, instead of replacing it, just return to the way it was. Meanwhile, besides calling for the repeal, Gov. Romney continues say as little as possible what would replace ACA.

Let me get this straight. Gov. Romney says he agrees with the minority court opinion that says the penalty is a penalty, thus not a tax, but says that since the majority opinion declared it a tax, it must be a tax. In the words of Artie Johnson, “Very interesting.” Meanwhile, this editorial from the conservative Wall Street Journal takes Gov. Romney to task on his handling of the tax/penalty issue. There, I couldn’t resist this clip.

With the flow of big dollars going into the campaigns, how much insurance would that buy for the uninsured? Hmmm … my guess is enough to minimize government involvement!

Some pundits are using the current heat wave across much of the U.S. to promote global warming. Meanwhile, I shake my head, and will post soon to explain.

On Headlines from The Onion

  • Congress Raises Livestock Minimum Wage
  • Man Being Dragged from Bus Leaves Hilarious Phone Message
  • Burger King Unveils New Trudge-Through Window
  • Local Man Shot with Girly Pistol
  • New Study Shows 85% of Americans Don’t Know All the Dance Moves to National Anthem
  • String of Poorly Received Performances Force Sock Puppet to Return to Foot

Here’s a special treat from The Onionclick to hear a (short, about a minute) radio news report on Extra, “Extra Large Man Finds a T-Shirt”

Interesting Reads
A conservative columnist explains the Roberts decision
Columnist David Brooks about the Republicans health care plan
In pursuit of the presidential pantheon
A timely column about marches (the musical kind that I love)
An infographic regarding scientists, the public, and religion
Summer cocktails
The Medication Generation
DNA and a parrot’s ability to parrot

On Potpourri
Hope you had a chance to enjoy the weekday holiday. We went to the annual neighborhood gathering, a 20+ year tradition that actually comes with the house when it is sold. Yep, whenever new owner arrive, when I meet them I inform them that this is the Fourth of July house. I’m thinking that 4 of the 5 new owners have bought in what the original owners started.

The World Choir Games have started with Cincinnati being the first American city to host the event. About 15,000 singers from 64 countries will be in town over the next two weeks, and we hope to take in some of the events.

Just as doubt was creeping in, this week I roared at golf league.

A reminder to everyone: Check your Spam folder on your dashboard to see if comments by regular visitors are unexpectedly going there.

Sorry to say, no classic cartoon post this weekend.

Given the holiday, I’m in the mood for a good march. Have a safe weekend everyone. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

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On a Ruling

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court surprised many people with their ruling regarding the Affordable Care Act (more commonly called Obamacare). As liberal Democrats responded predictably with glee, conservative Republicans also predictably responded with anger, doom, and gloom. Amidst all the rhetorical responses dominated by taglines, campaign slogans, and misinformation, I (on the other hand) have taken the time to ponder the situation.

In my opinion, Justice Robert would have voted no, but as the leader of the court, Chief Justice Roberts chose to his path based his long-term view of the court. Meanwhile, here is my opinion of what Chief Justice Roberts did.

He constricted the Commerce Clause

He kept the high court in its own jurisdiction, and out of the political arena

He passed the issue back to the people and their elections, especially this November

He assured governors the ability to opt out their state

I see more than a handful of governors will opt out, which means 1) fewer people will go into the Federal system – thus screwing up the numbers and the design so the program costs the Federal government more than projected; 2) elected officials will continue to politicize the issue, which includes using misinformation to gain political advantage

Meanwhile, the issue will divide the public more than ever, and the public will become more confused and angered than it already is. Because the public will want solutions and officials will continue to fail to deliver solutions, more people will become disillusion with government and participate less in elections – and when a political party gains total control, they will force something onto the public that the public doesn’t want. In the immortal words of pop music artists Sonny and Cher, and the beat goes on.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol 91

Announcing

On DOTY Nominations are Open
The first quarter of 2011 has ended, so it’s time to accept 2011 Dolts of the Year nominations. I nominate Terry Jones, Charlie Sheen, and Lindsay Lohan.

On Baseball’s Opening Week & College Basketball
Brewer broadcaster and great personality Bob Uecker is great to quote. On attending his 56th consecutive season opener: “Still not in the starting lineup.” On gaining weight following his illness: “I’m back to 190. That was my sitting weight when I played.”

This is from a Cincinnati Gazette editorial over 110 years ago. ”The baseball mania has run its course. It has not future as a professional endeavor.”

VCU and Butler in the Final Four was great for college basketball. Butler in the finals was great for college basketball. Butler winning would have been great for college basketball. In other words, all elitists can stick it in their ear – plus congratulations UConn on your great run and for beating Kentucky!

On Politics
Meanwhile, columnist David Brooks had an interesting view of the Rep Ryan’s [R-WI] proposed budget.

Sarah Palin said the US is spending $600 million per day in Libya. Secretary of Defense Gates said the bill was $550 million to date. I wonder who is lying.

Newt Gingrich continues to seek approval from the religious right by asking them to forgive him for his transgressions. If Newt really gave a hoot, he would publically forgive Bill Clinton not only for his transgressions, but Mr. Gingrich would seek forgiveness for all the words he said in the 90s about President Clinton’s immorality.

The US Supreme Court will eventually determine the fate of health care legislation. Here is a solution to appease this disenchanted by getting the government out of the business. Everyone against the legislation could purchase insurance for any uninsured. What a novel idea!

On a Local Convention Snafu
Cincinnati hosted a convention last weekend of homeschoolers. Interestingly, the Creation Museum is located near the city. The convention cancelled Dr. Ken Ham, from Answers in Genesis (who built and operates the museum), for behavior that was deemed as unkind, not gracious, unprofessional, ungrateful, and divisive.

On some Blogs
Thanks to Nancy for discovering this graphic illustrating 5000 years of Middle East history in 90 seconds.

Padre Steve is a Navy chaplain who shares his experiences from the military, politics, faith, baseball, and life. Here’s worth a visit.

Thanks to Don in Mass for exchanging links and providing good, short posts to ponder.

In the land of Uterusia, the home to Hysterical Raisins, Nonnie wrote lyrics for It’s My Uterus (to the Bill Withers tune Just the Two of Us). Such a Uteropian response to a political comment in Florida. To full appreciate the lyrics, click her video to hear Bill Wither’s original tune.

On a Movie
Last weekend we saw The Adjustment Bureau starring Matt Damon. It’s a fast-moving drama that will hold your attention; plus it will get you thinking.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 89

On Political Shorts
As our politicians muddle and haggle their way through budget decisions and handling the government’s deficit, I remind everyone that both major parties are not in fiscal order. In fact, the Republican National Committee has a greater debt than the Democrats National Committee.

This past Wednesday, potential GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney said that the first thing he would do is repeal the healthcare bill. Hmmm … hey Mitt! What about that Massachusetts plan?

The battle between the state house and public employees in Wisconsin is well known. We’ve also seen similar situations in Ohio, Indiana, and others. An action by Maine Governor LePage caused a “huh?” Read this interesting post from former cabinet member Robert Reich. Thanks to Don in Mass for the heads up. Then see this post from Nonnie.

If you didn’t see this interview with Veronica de La Cruz about health care, it is worth your time. Thanks WriteChic for making me aware of this interview.

On a Streetcar
The debate by the city of Cincinnati officials regarding a streetcar project is over a year old. Regardless of the condition of federal and state budgets, the reason I’ve been against this $128 million dollar project is simple. Today, most downtowns are centers of commerce, so most investments should center on increasing (or at least keeping) employment.

On DTWS
As noted on these pages before, we take ballroom dance lessons and enjoy Dancing with the Stars. A reminder, I thought that having Bristol Palin on last year was a mistake, and my worst fears almost happened. Shortly before the announcement of the latest cast, the decision makers asked former Delaware senator candidate Christine O’Donnell to participate. Fortunately, she declined – but if she would have accepted, I would not have watched this season until she was off.

On a Water Bill
Over the past year or so, we purchased a water-efficient clothes washer and replaced two original, 23-year-old toilets. Interestingly, we have seen a decrease in our water usage. Our choices were the GE WHRE5550 and a Kohler Cimarron.

On a Sheen Tactic
Charlie Sheen has been in his share of news in recent months – actually too much. By never mincing words in his posts, Beeze says that Sheen’s antics are an act – which I admit, is something I didn’t consider.

Have a good weekend everyone. Here’s a music sendoff for you, which also is well synced with the animations. Besides, Z likes this group.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 85

On SOTU
I continue to think about President Obama’s recent State of the Union. I continue to be weary of the dilemma between new spending and budget cuts – especially considering both are important. Meanwhile, Republican statements continue to reinforce my opinion that they have misread the recent election results. By the way, today is day 746 of the Obama presidency.

On the Health Care Dilemma
A Federal judge in Florida recently ruled the health care bill as unconstitutional – which now ties the ruling at 2-2. There’s no question the issue will make it to the US Supreme Court. Interestingly, because she was a member of the administration at the time, will Justice Kagan need to excuse herself from the case? Meanwhile, the House Constitution committee is going to discuss the constitutionality of the bill. Do you think the committee vote will follow party lines?

On an Upcoming Celebration
Need week we will hear more about President Reagan’s 100th birthday. Ah yes, as conservatives will provide have glowing praise for their hero of modern conservatism, while forgetting he was more liberal than most of them. Yep – Ronald Reagan would be a RINO today.

On Crisis in Egypt
The situation is Egypt is both interesting and frightening. Here are two articles that created thinking: Brookings Institute and New York Times Op-Ed.

On Modern Dentistry
Yesterday I had back-to-back appointments with two dentists. The first offered three different types of Valentine candy with a small red box as from a Chinese restaurant and the other had Otis Sprunkmeyer chocolate chip cookies. We’ve come a long way baby.

On an Interesting Family
Bill Tammeus’ Faith Matter blog provides a daily post about religion. Tuesday’s post provided this interesting perspective about family.

On the Super Bowl
Millions will watch this weekend’s Super Bowl – many from various parties. Enjoy, but return home safely.

Did you see the Tiki Barber interview on Yahoo! Sports where he was telling Packer players that the “G” on the helmet actually stands for greatness? This Packer blogger squashes that notion.

Here’s a music segway into the weekend. Louis Jordan is a legendary artist from the 1930s-1950s. I snjoy his up-tempo style of jump swing.

On the (Yawn) Health Insurance Debate

Discussions about health insurance reform continue through newspapers, blogs, news, and radio/TV talk shows – even a few sensible ones. Meanwhile, as President Obama is attempting to push the process forward, it’s time for a look by a voice of reason.

Point 1: At first, I saw President Obama making his insurance plan public before the summit with the Republicans as a major faux pas. Upon further review, he posted in advance simply to show that he listened to the other party. In other words, he went into the “summit” knowing what he would add. In other words, I’m not buying the appearance of compromise.

Point 2: To discover the rationale behind the positions of both parties, all one has to examine is their respective donor list. Ask yourself these questions: Why are Democrats against tort reform? Why are Republicans against controlling costs? Why is neither party focusing on what is best for people?

Point 3: Because of their bully-pulpit tactics, the Democrats have politically backed themselves into a corner with a no-win situation thinking they are giving the people what they want. As Mr. President pushes the bill toward reconciliation, the Republicans are licking the chomps because they seeing opportunities for them – not for the people. Besides, they are enjoying watching Speaker Pelosi leading her flock of lemmings toward the cliff. Does anyone think she will jump?

Conclusion: Two things are certain: continual health insurance debate takes away time from discussions about the economy in terms of jobs, and the both President Obama and the Democratic leadership have talked this supporter of health insurance reform into an opponent. Sorry Republicans, I’m not on your side either.

Meanwhile, here are some good columns on the mess.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 47

On the Sugar Bowl
Since I knew that the odds for winning the game against Florida, I was simply hoping for a respectful showing by my UC Bearcats. Well, my simple hope turned into a nightmare, thus arming the naysayers. UF simply had more good players. Nonetheless, the team still had a memorable season. Congratulations Gators!

On Double Standards
The Christmas Day airline incident reminded us of terrorism’s ongoing threat, the importance of efficient and effective airport security, and the role that each of us have in the process. Meanwhile, the spoken voices tell us so much more. The many of the Obama critics on this issue were blaming the Clinton administration for 9-11. Those defending President Obama were point to the Bush Administration for 9-11. Does anyone besides me and other nonpartisans see what is wrong?

On Airport Security
I do enough travel to understand the routine at airports, yet I have questions. Is TSA a security program or a job program? Although it is a mammoth undertaking, is Washington truly concerned about protection?

The situation demonstrates the continual disconnection between various government agencies when it comes to security. No matter the political party, Washington prefers rhetoric or achievement. I found this profound comment by columnist Maureen Dowd.

If we can’t catch a Nigerian with a powerful explosive powder in his oddly feminine-looking underpants and a syringe full of acid, a man whose own father had alerted the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria, a traveler whose ticket was paid for in cash and who didn’t check bags, whose visa renewal had been denied by the British, who had studied Arabic in Al Qaeda sanctuary Yemen, whose name was on a counterterrorism watch list, who can we catch?

On a Pathetic News Cast
I just watched a Today show news brief whose second topic was about finding Elin Woods skiing in France followed by news about Rush Limbaugh leaving the hospital. I know that the show’s format includes news reports to precede the news brief, but having Woods and Limbaugh as number 2 and 3? That’s pathetic!

On Hospitalized Rush
Whether it’s his arrogance, politics, twisted truths, misuse of facts, or overall mocking of people who deserve better, there’s not much I like about Rush Limbaugh. I don’t listen to his show nor do I have much respect for his flock of ditto heads. Nonetheless, when I heard the news about his hospitalization, I had thoughts about his successful recovery. You see, unlike many partisans, I also know that he deserves respect as a human being.

Upon his hospital release, the bombastic one with a huge ego had a news conference and said the following: “I don’t think there’s one thing wrong with the American health care system. I got no special treatment other that what anybody else that would have called 911 and had been brought in with the same kinds of symptoms.”

Hey Rush, the national debate is NOT about health care reform – it’s about health insurance! Let us be reminded that the people living by his words are the same people who mocked late Senator Ted Kennedy’s cancer care as the best money can buy.

On a Steelers’ Blast
Pittsburgh Steelers LB LaMar Woodley recently proclaimed that the Cincinnati Bengals would “lay down” in this Sunday’s game against the Jets because “No one wants to see Pittsburgh in it.” One question for LaMar – Why did the Steelers put themselves in the predicament of relying on others instead of getting the job done yourself?

On the Latest Banner
Have some similarities to my previous head is one of the reasons I choose the current banner. I also added a Past Headers page to serve as a reminder of this blog’s history – so check it out.