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Archive for September, 2008

The VP Debate

Everyone claims this is the make or break situation for either party, but I don’t think – unless Palin’s a total retard on the stage – that it will tip much. Unless somehow Palin becomes as beloved as Gandhi, which I don’t see happening any time soon. Biden will put us all to sleep like McCain did in the first Presidential debate.

Gotta love the stock market. Talks of bailout – > stocks go up. Failed bailout deal – > stocks plummet. Talk of a new deal by tomorrow – > stocks go back up. 60% of Congress – both Democrats and Republicans – are actually trying to be smart about this. The other 40% are ignorant doofuses who just want to pass something that benefits their constituents. So much for CHANGE (Democrats) and REFORM (Republicans).

Iraq’s learning that you can’t slouch when you start taking over your own security and military. The US held their hands for so long it’s really hard to do this right. But it has to be done. Unless, of course, they want to PAY us to do it for them with some of that money they’ve been hoarding.

SCIENCE!! is good for avoiding cyber theft. Common sense + care + SCIENCE!!! is even better.

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Debateable Part Dos

Every day’s a repost (my post from another forum):

I think that Senator McCain leaned too heavily on the word Veteran.

I’m a veteran, and I appreciate his sacrifice for this country. I appreciate his honest concern for me and my fellow veterans, and his experiences. I believe he is genuine when he speaks about veterans and their problems.

However

I do not appreciate him trying to constantly link himself to me. He does not represent me as this “spokesman” of all veterans. He was actually doing well, until the end, where all he could do is talk about his love for us. I don’t want his love. I don’t want his pity. I felt like he was trying to tell American that he’s THE veteran in this country. I find it appalling that he’s leaning so hard on that.

They both had valid and good points about foreign policy, although I think Obama came off looking better for it because McCain came off as Uncle Joe who only talks about his own 20 to 10 year ago experiences and expects that his slightly aged viewpoint in a world that has moved on to new challenges and dangers will alone suffice as enough to – as Obama put it – muddle through crisis after crisis. Obama put McCain on the defensive a lot, so McCain had to resort to, “UNDER OBAMA’S PROPOSED POLICIES,” to sidestep the subject.

In all honestly, I think the debate only polarized the decided voters and gave the undecided something to mull about for awhile. I think right now, McCain’s people better sit down and go over this debate and strengthen his talking points. They need to ween him off the “jump to accusation as a response to the big question” maneuver because when he does that, he opens it up to Obama to come back and blast him, which then makes him go into “20 year ago, I was …” stories.

They have got to get that man up to speed. If the debates ever go in-depth on the economy and technological questions, Obama’s got the decisive edge. John can’t keep lying about his unwillingness to support alternate energy policies and sticking to answers that may have worked twenty years ago.

Obama seemed quite prepared, so all I can say to him is that he should just stick to his points and not let McCain rile him up. Obama has to step up his precision and his ability to fend off the 20 minute story times of McCain. He’s articulate, he’s calm, and he can clear up the record. McCain could do well to pick up those qualities and not mispronounce the names of major world leaders and countries to the point of looking like he’s got Alzheimers.

I’m being critical of McCain because he should have the edge and look better than he did tonight. He has the ability to pull this through. He has the experience edge. I expected a lot more of him.

————–

And maybe I should stop expecting so much out of McCain.

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Debateable

So on we go to the first Presidential debate of the season.

I’ve been analyzing the problems McCain has been having, and I think literally the system is out to sabotage him from winning. Maybe that’s what the Republicans want – they want to forego a horrible Presidency with a candidate and running mate that more than half of them don’t see as qualified during a rocky time in US history. Two highly unpopular wars. Economic instability. Failing foreign policy.

The media is cranking up the torture, since they have tons of influence:
1. They called out McCain’s political maneuver over the bailout deal in front of the world.
2. They are pointing out all sorts of ways he really never did suspend his campaign, implying he’s a liar.
3. Critics in the media are basically saying that Palin is a horrible human being with terrible interviewing skills and bad policy ideas on national TV and radio.
4. Some people in the media are asking her to step down and let someone else be the VP choice, citing in excruciating detail all her flaws and problems.
5. There is a growing level of concern in the Republican party to force McCain to reverse his decision on Palin, and that’s only going to be reflected against his character (he’s already under fire as a flip-flopper about coming back to the debate).
6. And as we move into the debate, nearly every media outlet is talking about how McCain pulled a fast and “dirty” trick to put Obama off his guard. This one is a bit hard to swallow, because I’m pretty sure Obama was ready to debate regardless of McCain’s presence or not.

This is quickly turning into a PR disaster for McCain, and I don’t see anyone leap to his defense for the campaign. Of course, they leap to the defense of his character and his service, but they really don’t address his campaign. They avoid it, like they want him to remain a great Senator, but not really a Presidential candidate.

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My work life is pretty boring. I pretty much do the same routine every day, mostly to avoid complicating my day any farther when I have to work with China and their crappy coding. Everything that I can turn into a process is turned into a step-by-step checklist. This includes reading my online comics and eating lunch.

One of my work rituals is to eat a Red Baron French Bread Pizza thing. Normally, I try to get the Supreme pizza, because I like onions and peppers and hamburger, etc. on my pizza. However, due to a disappointing under-stocking error on Wal-Mart’s end, I got stuck getting two weeks worth (4 boxes of 8 pizzas) of Pepperoni bread pizzas.

Now, the pizzas are stored inside the cooking platter in small sealed bags in the box. The ingrediants on the top tend to fall off and scatter around in the platter and baggy. Not a big deal – I can shake them out on top of the pizza and stick it in the microwave with little arranging. Pepperoni pizzas are a bit different though, as I’m finding out.

The bread has cheeze* and sauce on it, but none of the pepperoni (pepperonis?) stuck to the top. Instead, they were all in the small cooking platter. They are basically small circles of pepperoni cut into quarters. So I began dumping them on my pizza, only to discover this crazy revelation:

There are a lot of little pepperoni quarters.

Maybe I’m suffering from OCD tonight – I go to arrange the pepperoni on my pizza to get the most pepperoni per square centimeter on my pizza. My first arrangement is to put a line of three across, five lines total. I still have 23 quarters left. Okay, so lets try 4 by 5. That seems excessive, and the first row won’t take more than 3 quarters so I do the best I can.

By now I’m curious to see what the optimal pepperoni arrangement is. A-ha! A puzzle! Must make all the little pieces fit on the surface of the pizza. No overlapping. No empty space. I arrange quarters here and there, even retconning a few settings to get as much pepperoni in the new configuration. Eventually, I get the entire pizza covered so it looks like one giant pepperoni on the top.

I still have 4 quarters left.

JFC, did Red Baron just shove random amounts of pepperoni in my pizza? Is one of my pizzas going to be incredibly short? How can anyone eat that much pepperoni on a piece of bread? I’m confused by this blatant attempt to poison me with pepperoni. What is the point?**

——

* I call it Cheeze because it really isn’t cheese but some sort of cheese by-product that stands in for cheese. Maybe cheese is too lazy to perform for my nightly lunch routine. Maybe cheese requests too much salary to be there. I think they outsourced the role of cheese to this sorry substitute from India. Damn foreign cheese!
** My solution was to cook the four extra pieces on the plate next to the platter (I put a plate under the platter). However, this resulted in a shitload of grease oozing across the plate, and now I’m not so hungry. Fucking Red Baron.

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The Pakistanis have had it. They are shooting at US military assets too close to their border. Their President announced that they will simply not tolerate the US violating their space any longer. Meanwhile, the Taliban is sitting back, thumbing their noses at the impatient US troops who want to destroy them. Could we have bungled that any worse? Probably not.

Just as a boatload of {sarcasm} good news {/sarcasm} hits Washington, the big baliout deal between Congress and the Administration hits a rough patch. What really makes me sigh is that there were many Republican politicans sitting there on TV going, “JFC, McCain is not doing anything but being difficult.” I twitched – there had to be some response from McCain or his people about how that wasn’t true or how he’s doing something or …  But, alas, there was none. Argh, how frustrating! Less than six weeks to go and they are just not doing their damn job! Nothing makes me grind my teeth more than people not doing their damn jobs!

JP Morgan & Chase is going to swallow WaMu’s debt and deposits. The way they are going about is pretty much the same shit that got banks like WaMu in trouble – betting on the insurance game when WaMu debts fail to pay out a fortune to Chase. If it doesn’t work (and there’s a huge chance it won’t), JP Morgan & Chase will choke on it. Adding yet ANOTHER institution to the mix.

(BTW, JP Morgan’s “everything is going to transition seemless” statement to the clients is a load of bullshit. Chase uses Total Systems to do their transactions, and WaMu uses First Data. Neither of those corporations hand off clients seemlessly to each other. First Data will probably fuck with TS and cause this to be the worst transition for WaMu clients, causing some to bail and hate Chase for it.)

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I can’t believe Palin said that, even as a joke. Right after her meetings with Karzai and the other leaders. >_<

Karzai warned the present US Administration that accidental civilian deaths and destructive raids by the military in the region (hint, hint – over the border as well) will backfire on our troops in Afghanistan. This coincides with the militant factions in Pakistan announcing that if their government does not break ties with the US, there will be greater violence and death. Tension is running high.

The Iraqi government has approved the law for provential elections. Hopefully, this will ease some of the problems in the outlying areas. On the flip side, I wouldn’t be surprised if the parliment then went back on it’s word and suspended provential elections like a week prior.

Today’s IDAM:
After being blasted by everyone for saying such harsh things about the US, go ahead and say that it’s possible we can kiss and make up.

I’m putting the bailout stuff on the bottom because I’m getting tired of talking about it. Congress is now squeezing the bailout bill as a bipartisan group. As in, “Holy shit, they’re working together.” This would have been a great opportunity for McCain to make headway in his political move to camp out there until the crisis is resolved. But – again – the media is ruining his ploy by talking about how big of a ploy it is, and how little he’s actually going to do to resolve anything (since he’s skipped most of the votes and debates earlier this year on the subject anyway).

They are out to crucify McCain, and it’s showing on his poll numbers. 52% for Obama to 43% McCain, a total crash from the 49% McCain to 46% Obama numbers after the Palin boost.

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The Fed and Administration’s $700b bail-out is being tightly analyzed and criticized from all angles. Both parties in Congress want more oversight and assurance that they don’t have to do this again next year. Both Presidential candidates are skeptical about the intentions of the plan. A lot of people think that India has the right idea – when a CEO fucks up and is forced to fire people because of his/her financial blunders, we should just form a mob and KILL them.

Whatever they do, they should probably try to prevent the same fucking incompetence and greed from running financial institutions and take away golden parachutes from failures. Let the CEOs try working for a mere $200k a year, instead of $2m.

The fear of this economic crisis is quite evident in the way voters are considering to vote in November. The edge is always in favor of the candidate who isn’t of the current party sitting in the President’s chair. Doesn’t help that the GOP doesn’t police the racist members of it’s own party from saying completely inane and stupid crap. Or the fact that McCain’s campaign is run by Bush’s people pretending it’s still 1980 (and that fact is now obvious due to the media coverage on it.).

Example of throwing hundreds of thousands of dollars into the trash – let Pakistan shoot down your UAVs. Come on, Army – where’s your skill?

Today’s IDAM:
Talk about the US economic situation while appearing to be very ignorant of your own economic peril from sanctions.

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Official Announcement

I’m going to be a father soon. Due date is in May, and I’m both excited and terrified.

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Ahoy Mateys!

It’s Talk Like A Pirate Day. There’s speculation if modern day pirates talk like 17th Century pirates, but rest assured, they are still among us.

Remember how back in March, the Administration and John McCain both said that the mortgage problem wasn’t a crisis? Well, now there’s a plan going to Congress to resolve handling this same crisis. Buying back toxic mortgage debt to end the crisis? Sounds like someone royally goofed in March.

I love how they said, “Hey, Al-Qaida and terrorism am imploding, lolz,” at the beginning of the week, and now the US is having gun battles with them north of Baghdad. And India is having gun battles with terrorists in their own streets. And Al-Q are releasing a tape stating that more attacks are on the way. Man, if this is implosion, I’d hate to see the explosion/expansion!

Three relevant blunders of present US diplomacy:
- Russia strikes back, saying it won’t be rendered irrelevant by the US and shoved back behind another Iron Curtain.
- Iran says no amount of sanctions levied by the US and the UN will stop nuclear work.
- North Korea said they are rebuilding and reactivating their reactor due to the US being a bunch of fucking pricks.

SCIENCE!!! predicts a possible pandemic on our horizon. Everyone needs to practice using the boardgame ASAP!!!

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