Sunday, January 24, 2010

Benjamin Franklin:

"The more I discovered of the former, the more I admired them; the more I know of the latter, the more I am disgusted with them. Men I find to be a sort of beings very badly constructed, as they are generally more easily provoked than reconciled, more disposed to do mischief to each other than to make reparation, much more easily deceived than undeceived, and having more pride and even pleasure in killing than in begetting one another, for without a blush they assemble in great armies at noon day to destroy, and when they haved killed as many as they can, they exaggerate the number to augment the fancied glory; but they creep in to corners, or cover themselves with the darkness of night when they mean to beget, as living ashamed of a virtuous action."

p. 307
A Great Improvisation

The latter being his contemporaries in government.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Who can you learn more from, an eight year old or an advisor to the president?

My son is a budding herpetologist, he wants to study snakes and other reptiles.

The presumpted sensei is "Charles E. Phillips — president and director of the tech conglomerate Oracle Corporation and a member of Obama's Economic Recovery Advisory Board."

Today my son asked me to pick a snake that I wanted to learn about and he'll gather information from his books on that snake for me.

I picked the Boomslang, which I learned is the only species in the Dispholidus genus. A Colubridae, Dispholidus typus.

With a max length of about five feet it can be a few different colors, but deadly poisonous. The name means "tree snake" in Afrikaans.

What Mr. Phillips taught me is that billboards in major metropolitian areas will cost about $50,000, and having an eight year affair is even more costlier.

And while its good to know about the cost of advertising in Times Square, I think the eight years I've spent with my son is of more value than the same years Mr. Phillips spent with Ms. Wilkins.

Advantage: The herpetologist.

Plus all this I'm learning about snakes!

My son, following in my footsteps. I studied snakes in college -- Political Science.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Funny thing I heard today:

Erstwhile Republican, now Democrat, Arlen Spector asks Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.)to state what she stands for!

Read the story and the audio here.

There is more, he tells her to "act like a lady."

If only we knew where dear Arlen stands.

He's up for re-election. Its widely understood that he needs years 31 - 36 in the Senate in order to accomplish something for the people, besides the "single bullet theory."

Did I mention he was a Democrat before he was a Republican, now Democrat again?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

In the business of information, truth raises to the top. It may take time, and the sitting champ will fight back, but time is on the side of the more honest contender.

I read that a long time ago, and have believed it ever since.

I had a short conversation a few weeks ago, political conversations with the duration of short require focused generalizations, when my colleague quipped that he doesn't listen to a certain news station.

"They have an agenda," he said.

I appreciated his concern for fair and balanced journalism, but as the news station he shuns is the ratings leader now a days, I dropped my opening line on him.

That is all.

Oddly, today I viewed a number of news sites, wanting to see the coverage on the Brown win in Massachusetts.

The ratings leader had a story on the victory, even an image on the front page of the smiling victor.

The news site preferred by my friend on guard against agendas had a story of the loser's faulty campaign and a story on the first year of the Obama Administration. Nothing on the Brown triumph! No kidding.

You know what, my friend never seen that clip of Brown rebuking the debate moderator about the seat not being the Kennedy's nor the Democrat Party.

Should I let him know who won last night? I hate to come off as a Republican mouth piece. . . .

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Could we be seeing the beginnings of a movement to "traditionalize" certain seats of Congress?

What I'm talking about is that I've read and heard, over the last few times a Democrat seat went open, is a notion that it was someones seat, so only someone with those sames views is appropriate for it.

Like only a liberal and a health care proponent is worthy of the seat in Massachusetts.

It's not said outright, implied little more, but the language by the pundits and the candidates assume the sale.

It gives me pause, I think, could the long view be that of a large number of seats in Congress entitled on a tradition?

Sunday, January 10, 2010

New Year, New Focus

Just read Beck's "Common Sense". In general I like this book better than Levin's "Lyberty and Tyranny". The argument differ slightly, but the conclusions are the same. That we are on the wrong path as a nation is fairly self-evident, the degree to which the cancer is pervasive is unsettled and unsettling in any event.

A must read, a call to action.

I especially love the notion that to dismiss third party voting as a waste implies that we can't do any better than what we got. Heaven forbid.