Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 256

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While I appreciate the No-Labels organization and their agenda as the National Strategic Agenda (for problem solving), in the end, politicians remain loyal to their party. Nonetheless, this is a good read.

The Senate’s delay of dealing with confirming a new Attorney General is the type of political theater I deplore. All presidential nominees should be acted upon, thus not treated as political footballs … and that’s regardless of the president’s party and the majority party in the Senate. If the senators are hiding behind Senate Rules, then I suggest changing the rules.

Welcome to another edition of It’s Time for Truth with Presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). Here’s the explanation from PolitiFact.


Wayne LaPierre is the Executive Vice President of the National Rifle Association (NRA). Given a high position in many other organizations (if not most), remarks like he makes would have gotten him fired.

The Rock n Roll Hall of Fame recently inducted new members. Joan Jett before the Moody Blues? Joan Jett before Yes? That organization has no credibility – None, nada, zilch, zero. Their credibility level is near that of Baseball Commissioner Emeritus Bud Selig and Congress … and that’s not good company.

I had a lousy week of visiting your blogs. 😦

Our energy provider recently sent us this graph regarding energy use.


Meals: The Musical is scheduled to return next week, which means I will announce Act 3’s theme on the next Monday Morning Entertainment.

No Saturday Morning Cartoons this weekend, but Saturday will bring a new Explore post.

Milestone alert – Approaching a quarter of a million hits, thus should surpass next week.

Body cameras on police is getting a lot of attention. To lead you into it’s headlines, The Onion offers a list of pros and cons regarding this issue.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
Medical experts disappointed in man who failed to live up to life expectancy
Lethal injection least effective drug man took while in prison
Hand gestures transform friend’s story into immersive virtual reality experience
Relationship reaches point where breaking up, getting married would be equally huge hassle
Lovestruck Arabian princess begs father to spare John Kerry’s life

Interesting Reads
Columnist Dana Milbank on partisanship, the elected, and the electorate
Redefining India’s textile heritage
World War I Anzaks (and Anzak Day is Saturday)
How an octopus is coordinated
A short web & digital technology quiz from Pew Research Center

Your Weekend Celebrations
(Fri) Hairball Awareness Day, Satchmo Days, Meningitis Day, Arbor Day, Pigs in a Blanket Day, New Kids on the Block Day, Teach Your Children to Save Day, Puppetry Day, Sylvester the Cat’s Birthday, Natasha’s (Sesame Street) Birthday
(Sat) Anzac Day, DNA Day, Dance Day, Hug a Plumber Day, Bob Wills Day, Eeyore’s Birthday, Hairstylists Appreciation Day, Marconi Day, License Plates Day, Malaria Awareness Day, Go Birding Day, Herb Day, Penguin Day, Red Hat Society Day, Rebuilding Day, Save the Frogs Day, Sense of Smell Day, Spring Astronomy Day, World Day for Animals in Laboratories, World Healing Day, Veterinary Day, Tai Chi & Qigong Day, Telephone Day, Kiss of Hope Day, East Meets West Day
(Sun) Hug an Australian Day, Photography Day, Static Cling Day, Hug a Friend Day, Help a Horse Day, Audubon Day, Mother-Father-Deaf Day, Kids & Pets Day, Pretzel Day, Pet Parent’s Day, Richter Scale Day, Intellectual Property Day

There should be any doubt why these songs will send you into the weekend, Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

On the No Labels

January 2011 marks the start of the 112th Congress that has a political climate ripe for a third party. Consider the Republicans with their insurgent Tea Party arm and the Republican moderates they aim to oust if these RINOs don’t fall in line. The Democrats aren’t much different. Unless the Democratic moderates, some known as Blue Dogs, vote with the liberals, the party’s left has similar distain for their party’s moderates.

While some see the results of the recent Lame Duck session as hope for compromise, others see this as an opportunity for increased divisions. Will the Tea Party’s no compromise methodology lead to attacks of GOP Senators Brown (MA), Snowe (ME), Collins (ME), and Lugar (IN)? Will the GOP climate lead to more independents as Murkowski (AK)? Will these mavericks be able to survive?

Some Democrats openly wonder if these GOP moderates will bolt for the Democrats. After all, liberals will gladly welcome the disenfranchised as long as the newcomers vote their way.

The past 50 years has brought a shift in the political spectrum as a common overlap no longer exists between the two parties, thus leaving two distinct parties with distinct ideologies and distinct interests – thus leaving a chasm filled with moderate independents, many of whom who consider themselves as socially liberal but fiscally conservative.

In response, groups as No Labels attempt to fill the void – perhaps as a resistance to the pull from the extremely – even perhaps as a nostalgic effort for those of us who yearn for common ground days gone by. Yet respected columnist (and two-party purist) George Will tempered my hope by referring to No Labels as a political fantasyland filled with gaseous rhetoric. Although Mr. Will firmly believes that time brings a new equilibrium, today’s independent moderates feel disenfranchised by both parties.

I continue to maintain America is a politically centered country – perhaps even center right, thus the importance of political overlap. Groups as No Labels are interesting, but chances of them taking hold are slim because of their lack of exposure. The movement needs an infusion of defections from profile Republicans and Democrats, but that would require guts – Guts to leave the political and financial backing of a political party – Guts to abandon committee chairs – Guts to help fund a new movement – Guts to give up power– Guts to go against the flow.

Since I don’t believe the guts exist, perhaps I must wait for the new equilibrium while continuing to vote against a candidate rather than for one.

Interesting Reads: David Broder, William Galston, and John Avalon