Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 159

On Politics
Here are fact checks on the presidential town hall debate.

Gotta love Greatsby’s notes through pictures of the recent presidential debate.

I appreciate this bit of advice from Chris at Nachos Grande (who also happens to be the first person to comment on this blog): I won’t engage in political talks with people I don’t know. You can argue with buffoons and too many people who want to argue politics are buffoons – and from both sides of the political aisle.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • The Onion Wins Nobel Prize in Overall Excellence
  • Polls Reveal Essential Nothing
  • Spielberg Panics, Adds Comical Groin Injury to Lincoln
  • Millions Head to Internet to Figure Out Own Opinions about Debate
  • Man on Personal Mission to Explain Why He Universally Enjoys Things that are Bad
  • Whales Beach Themselves in Attempt to Purchase The Onion Book of Known Knowledge

Interesting Reads

On Potpourri
I just returned from a fun event playing night golf. Yep … the glow-in-the-dark ball, a glow stick on the flagstick and in the hole, my clubs, and a flashlight.

Sometimes timing is everything. When I wrote and published yesterday’s Movember post about cancer and Proctober, I didn’t realize that I have an appointment on Friday at the urologist.

Earlier this week I announced my candidacy for Worldly High President of the Not-Freshly Pressed Community (NFPC). Some wonder about the title. Any suggestions?

This week I met my first blogger who happens to be a very loyal reader here. Thanks for the delightful day John Erickson!

On my trip, I saw this office building approaching and drive by for the first time – the headquarters for Longaberger Baskets.

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A ginger ale update: I purchased more varieties and hope report next week. Meanwhile, Suranac Ginger Beer was on the smooth side and very balanced – thus bumps Hansen’s on advancing to the competition round.

Sorry – but no classic cartoon post this Saturday morning. HOWEVER, I want to something, so I hope to have a light post for your weekend.

Let’s go into the weekend with some class with the great voices of Katherine Jenkins and Placido Domingo Have a good weekend! In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

On the Next “Debate”

Tuesday brings another presidential debate, which actually means more none answers and maneuvering the answer toward the scripted response. Unfortunately, because the event will not be using my rules, I doubt if I’ll watch. By the way, I’ll be making a special announcement during the debate, hopefully during the first 20-40 minutes!

Before we get started, here are good resources to fact-check the VP candidates and their answers.

I added another twist to this event with an independent Answer Rating Panel. Assuming I don’t banish the candidate to the Cone of Silence, each panelist will score the response from 1 (low) to 5 (high). However, the score is not if they agree/disagree, but how well the candidate answers the question. Given the rules, time will tell if the panelist will get a chance to rate an answer.

I diligently searched for independent minds to help inform American voters. Without any further adieu, here are your Answer Rating Panelists.

My questions for Gov. Romney
1) You have commonly referenced the United States being “On the road to Europe”. You have also mocked Europeans on numerous occasions by not waiting to drag America down to Europe’s standards Yet, when you were in Europe, we refused to answer what you meant by that and other similar comments. What’s good about Europe?

2) Given your statements on Afghanistan, what is the difference between your plan and the president’s?

3) How would you respond if Germany wanted to have a military base in the U.S.?

4) Forbid this would happen, but here’s a scenario. The U.S. military enters a new military conflict in country XYZ. Would your administration finance the operation on or off the books?

5) Shortly after crediting the military and intelligence professionals Shortly after crediting the military and intelligence professionals for their infliction on Al-Qaeda in Pakistan and Afghanistan, including bin Laden’s death , you stated ” I will vigorously pursue the terrorists who attacked our consulate in Benghazi and killed Americans.” …. So I want to ask – While you are on your solo, covert mission as Mittbo the Nemisis, who will serve as president?”

6) Your tax cuts cost money. Your expansion in military spending costs money. Meanwhile, cutting funding to PBS and Planned Parenthood doesn’t put a dent in financing those ideas. You mention closing loopholes. In order to help the American people understand your position, I gave you a checklist of deductions and loopholes for individuals so you can check Yes or No regarding whether you favor or against removing this item. Let’s now show how you answered.

7) This is about the campaign. You accused the Obama campaign about its dishonest, deceptive, divisive, distorted, misleading, and out-of context information.

  • Please give 3 examples of this.
  • By making the previous accusation and supporting it with examples, are you also saying your campaign has not used dishonest, deceptive, divisive, distorted, misleading, and out-of-context information?
  • So, are you also saying that the independent fact-checking reports have not been truthful with their findings?

8) You previously stated, “The president has to spend three years working in business before he becomes president of the United States. Then he or she would understand that the policies they are putting into place have to encourage small business to grow.” Does your running mate meet these qualification?

9) Instead of the government bailout, you favored the banks helping the auto industry. What would you have done if the banks, for whatever reason, decided not to help the auto companies?

My Questions for President Obama
1) In your 2008 campaign, you strongly wanted to close Gitmo, and one of your first year acts was to start the closing process. Because Gitmo is still open, how did you underestimate the process?

2) How would you respond if Great Britain wanted to have a military base in the US?

3) Tax increases seem to be the focus of your plan to increase revenues. Respond to the nonpartisan economists that mention the additional need for other revenue streams.

4) In terms of federal revenues as a share of GDP, additional taxes from those making more than $250,000 is only a small revenue stream. With that in mind, how do you propose to increase federal revenue?

5) Congress enacted and you signed Dodd-Frank to tighten up the financial sector. Why was this needed because the actions from the industry were legal. After all, the Justice Department has did not prosecute anyone involved in the financial collapse.

6) Many voters want bipartisan cooperation. During your term to date, was your biggest mistake why this did not happen?

7) Should the U.S. Supreme have another independent swing-vote justice?

8) In order to increase the supply of doctors, should the U.S. encourage immigration of doctors?

9) With America greatly reducing pollution in the past 50+ years, should Americans face a carbon tax while the greatest polluters today are in other countries?

10) Who made the decision to have someone tickle VP Biden’s feet during his debate with Rep. Ryan?

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 157

On Politics
This is a great line that is not only appropriate for this political season, it’s true for life: Think for yourself, don’t believe everything you hear, and look it up.

I find the late-night comics and their take on politics  to be funny, such as this pre-debate bit by Conan O’Brien.

I didn’t watch the debate, but did notice that top Google searches during the debate involved two of the questions on my list: Simpson-Bowles and Dodd-Frank. Even heard some morning commentators mention Glass-Steagall (another one of questions). For those who watched, could the moderator have used my rules? I note that some are criticizing Mr. Lehrer’s performance.

Debate Fact Checks

This article at National Journal provides a great graphic about the breakdown of voter preferences. Thanks Moe.

For those who enjoy The Onion, here are the voter guides (video) for the election: Barack Obama and Mitt Romney

For anyone desiring a deep discussion of various global issues, consider visiting Intelligence Squared. Thanks Tim for mentioning this site.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • Guy in Suit Handling Newspaper like a Pro
  • Florida to Experiment with New 600-Lever Voting Machine
  • Reporter Steps in to Replace Woman’s Missing Husband
  • Schwarzenegger Admits to Affair with Predator Costume
  • Texting While Fielding Causes Record Number of Outfield Collisions
  • Nauseating Precious NYC Couple to Walk Around in Rain

Interesting Reads

On Potpourri
I will have a Saturday Morning Classic Cartoon  post tomorrow.

I like this one. The race for Ohio’s senator involves Josh Mandel and Sherrod Brown. When people search “Mandel Brown Ohio”, the commonly get the site for Mandell Brown, a Cincinnati plastic surgeon.

Here this weekend is the football battle that is the oldest non-league rivalry game in college football. Go Bearcats!

Baseball’s regular season ended on a Wednesday, thus another reason to hate Commissioner Bud Selig. The one-game playoff games are about to start, thus another reason to hate Commissioner Selig.

The Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame may be a great idea, but their selection process may be one of the worst processes ever. All I have to ask is no Moody Blues again? Is Bud Selig also running the R&R HOF?

Have a good weekend. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch. Enjoy the video. (Here’s a higher quality video to the same song below that must be watched on YouTube.)

On “Debates” 2012

The first of the presidential debates starts this week. Well, there are not debates, but actually glorified new conferences with the parties setting the rules that give the candidates plenty of opportunities to continue there taglines.

Odds are very good that the candidates will provide an answer without answering the question. After all, Mr. Romney has previously stated to a moderator, “You have the right to ask the questions you want to, and I have the right to answer them in a way I want to.”

What if I was running the event? If so, here are the six rules in the A Frank Angle interview format.

  1. The moderator (me) is in charge; thus asks the questions, exercises any rule at any time, and can re-ask questions until answered.
  2. If the candidate does not answer the question, immediately turn off their microphone and surround them with the cone of silence.
  3. If the candidate strays from the question, immediately turn off their microphone and surround them with the cone of silence.
  4. If the candidate stresses the faults of the other candidate’s position over emphasizing their position, immediately turn off their microphone and surround them with the cone of silence.
  5. If a candidate cuts off the other, turn off their microphone and surround them with the cone of silence.
  6. When in doubt, see Rule 1.

Better yet, here are some questions that probably will not be asked on the televised events.

To Mr. Romney
Let’s assume you win, but face a divided Congress. How will you navigate the non-compromising segment of your party?

Was President Obama born in the United States? Is President Obama a Muslim? Besides some horseshit answer like “They are entitled to believe what they want to believe”, explain yourself to the people who do believe it.

If the US Supreme Court is for all Americans, would you favor one in the mold of the other conservatives or one of independent mind?

(Follow up) There are taxes, penalties, and fees. You repeatedly state that you want to lower tax rates After the Supreme Court ruling regarding the Affordable Car Act, you happily accepted the mantra that penalties are taxes. With that same thought, aren’t fees also taxes?

There are many in your party who advocate the teaching of various explanations of Biblical creationism in a science classroom. Why have you not taken the stance that the US Supreme Court ruled against that over 40 years ago?

To President Obama
One aspect of your 2008 message of hope and change focused on bringing the two parties together as much as possible. On the other hand,  a hard-driving Rahm Emmanuel’s (your chief of staff) is a direct contradiction to your message. How do you explain the difference between what you say and what you do?

Afghanistan continues to be a trouble spot. Although the American public supports the military, the majority does not favor this conflict. When are you going to make the decision to stop nation building and get the heck out?

Why did you not immediately embrace the recommendations from the bi-partisan Simpson-Bowles Commission?

The financial sector is the foundation for our economic system. Because Dodd-Frank continues to allow banking deregulation, why did you not support returning to the regulation established by Glass-Steagall?

Outside of the stimulus, the economy didn’t become the focus of your presidency until year three. Why?

To Both
Each of you frequently mentioned the importance of small businesses. What is your definition of small business?

(Follow-up) Why did you ignore the Federal Government’s own definition as per the Small Business Administration? Now, given statistics from the SBA and IRS, let’s examine your claims.

To Rep. Ryan
What is 1+1?
Good, you can add. Here’s a calculator, a pencil, scrap paper, and your budget. Because your numbers do not add up and need more explanation, go over to the side to work on this and we’ll get back to you.

To Vice-President Biden
How did you react to The Onion’s portrayals of you washing a sports car and offering guitar lessons?

Two Interesting Reads

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 156

On Politics
The presidential debates start next week. Odds are, I will pass on the first one. Meanwhile, and no kidding, I saw this commercial! This one is for Lame!

In last week’s OITS, I provided a quote from the local Tea Party. Here’s another gem: Since neither government or criminals produce anything, illegitimate government and criminals share common behaviors: both use force or threat of force to take property (and sometimes lives) from its rightful owners and give it someone else who “needs” it.

Also in last week’s OITS, I gave suggestions for Mitt Romney. In less than 24 hours, the Nincompoop also provided suggestions. (Evidence) The graphic below compares the two sets. And I’m not even voting for him! Thanks Ginger FightBack for the graphic entitled Palin Fruit.

Earlier this week I watched an interview with former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who stated that he doesn’t rely on polls, thus explain most polls showed John Kerry (in 2004) was going to beat President Bush. Mr. Giuliani, really? Then please explain this evidence to me.

Two Relevant Political Reads

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • Area Mom Waited in Car for 20 Minutes
  • Scientists Working on Immortality Better Hurry for Area Man
  • Botanist Discover Trees are Slowly Trying to Strangle Each Other
  • Loose First Grader Brings Home Different Friend Every Time
  • Egyptian Woman Wishes Screaming-Protester Husband would go Bonkers for Her Once in a While
  • Glowing Ahmadinejad: “I am the nuclear weapon we’ve been building”

Interesting Reads
Health benefits of Pinot Noir
A report about climate science reported by Fox News
Roman Empire and its economy
New theory about why men love breasts
Science and faith on a secular campus
A worthy read from someone with ADHD

On Potpourri
It seems shoulder impingement is rearing its ugly head in my left shoulder, so it’s back to the daily strength and flexibility exercises.

I’ve had enough! It’s time for the US military and our allies to leave Afghanistan.

A couple of value recommendations from Wine Spectator: Folonari Chianti 2010 ($9), Charles & Charles Rose 2011 ($11), and 14 Hands Hot-to-Trot Red ($12)

Wine Spectator (Oct 15) published over 200 value reds and whites from the US. If you are looking for recommendations, let me know what you like.

Strength and blessings to El Guapo, a loyal visitor here, whose mother passed away earlier in the week.

I will have a Saturday Morning Classic Cartoon post tomorrow.

To send you into the weekend, enjoy the energetic music from Bond. Unfortunately, I had issues embedding it here, so click here. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.