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Archive for January, 2010

State of the Union 2010

Didn’t watch the entire thing, just parts. It was your typical rally session given like every other President before.

83% of Americans watching the speech approved, although the extremes (strongly approve vs strongly disapprove) are fairly the same as last year (-17 to last year’s -14). Today, Obama’s approval barely moved up, staying basically the same, which is still almost 20% higher than GW Bush’s highest approval in 2005 (GW received a -23 on his first SotU of his second term, and was hovering around 20% approval). I mean, pretty typical – nearly every President’s numbers rise a little after a good State of the Union (save GW Bush in 2007, who actually saw a pretty big downturn).

The SotU was the highest viewed program, with American Idol trailing by 2.3 points. House did average although they had a strong Monday – third from the bottom of shows. An estimated 30.5 million people watched the State of the Union, and then when the Republican rebuttal came, only an estimated 9.3 million people were watching. Less than 10 million viewers is what got Ugly Betty canceled.

What’s fun is listening to Fox Failure try to rebuttal the speech, since even the Republicans weren’t even that harsh. I just love the NeoCon hugging, Kool-Aid drinking bitches that network employs. I’m almost certain it’s because those people are good controversy brewers, since they are horrible reporters/analysts.

(I used the Nielsen ratings, three separate polls taken, and basically read the talking points of the SotU compared to actual facts – there was a pretty big stinger there where Obama correctly pointed out the deficit was $1.1 trillion by the time he took office, even if he gaffed a bit on the number of jobs saved.)

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Unless you live under a rock (which some people on the Internet somehow manage to do), you have probably already read about today’s Apple presentation of the all-famous, highly rumored iPad. If not, Gizmodo has plenty (and I mean plenty) of articles discussing it.

My thoughts:

PROS
You can get one relatively cheap for an Apple product. Only $30 for unlimited data with no contract.
– It does what the iPhone and iTouch do, including being 3G compatible. Also Bluetooth capable.
– Works with nearly all apps.
– Can play games.
– Very pretty, light and functional.

CONS
No integrated camera. Come on, Apple – you have iPods with cameras. How hard is it to put a camera in that dinky little piece of plastic?
– No unregistered PDF usage. Even with the app from iPhone, the reps are saying no illegally d/led PDFs. People have cracked Kindles to do it, but the iPad won’t let you. Fuck that.
– Can play games, but who the fuck plays a lot of games like Need for Speed on a Mac? Even Gizmodo agrees that game apps for the iPhone and iTouch are fairly niche products. In fact, it doesn’t even look good on the iPad – graphics appear to be very low resolution. And as Cowkitty pointed out – people were more excited to be playing FarmVille on the damn thing than using it for it’s full potential. JFC.
– It doesn’t look very … art friendly. I mean, I expected them to show us a nice stylus-to-screen interface that would allow art people to do amazing things with it. All the art people I know are like, “WTF is this? Not impressed!”

So, yeah. It has the potential to blow PC netbooks out of the water. But it needs to be cheaper still, with more PC functionality and a built-in webcam to allow me to Skype to people while going places. Until then, I’m not spending $850 on a fully-realized iPad that forces me to use iTunes/iBooks to do every little damn thing (I’m exaggerating a little, but I want my illegally d/led PDFs, damn it).

But the Apple fans – those lousy, addicted Apple fans – will buy it at full price, keeping it there for a year or two until its no longer a relevant piece of technology. Fuck Apple fans.

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As a Senator

You should never preface your upcoming statement with, “I know it’s not politically correct to say this, but …” because you look like a total idiot. James Inhofe from Oklahoma said it was perfectly okay to racially profile people, then went on to incorrectly say that all terrorists are Muslim. In which the ex-Naval Admiral who spoke next had to correct Inhofe’s statement by saying that there’s plenty of non-Muslim, non-Middle Eastern terrorists out there and racial profiling is only about 50% effective – you have to use more innocuous methods to catch aircraft suicide bombers.

Which is why – as a Senator – if you think it might get you in trouble, don’t fucking say it. I think Inhofe needs to die soon, since he’s older and more prejudice than Joe Biden.

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Which is a real shame, because the Democrats – in all their arrogance – forgot to actually CAMPAIGN for their candidate until the last week or so. Maybe it was better that they didn’t, because their candidate actually sucked. Too bad that Obama’s people actually convinced him that Coakley was worth stumping for, since everyone wanted her to lose.

Which then starts the argument of the healthcare bill. Again. There’s only three realities here:

  1. We’re already paying healthcare for the poor, and the cost for us is going to triple in like 18 or 20 months.
  2. There needs to be a fix to cap certain costs, and give people a chance to get health insurance.
  3. The medical community needs to use efficient and consistent methods in areas such as records. There is no reason why I should pay one healthcare provider $50+ to transfer paper records to another healthcare provider. This shit needs to be electronic and efficient. For a system that touts using technology, they sure don’t act like they do. JFC.

The Democrats can’t seem to come up with a simple, working plan that they can all agree on. The Republicans have resorted to denying that the healthcare system needs reform, merely to deny the Democrats any victory. The Dems need to shut the fuck up and be smart (which I know is incredibly difficult for them). The Republicans need to get motivated and take on the issue with a plan, instead of being fucking lazy and stupid (which is incredibly difficult for them lately).  The Dems used to be the ones known for being lazy, answer-less people. Now the Republicans are resorting to that plan for some reason that is unfathomable to me. They need to stop waiting for the Dems to blow it and actually do something.

Fucking lazy-ass, ignorant Republican Congress people. Fucking stubborn, clueless Democrat Congress people. Why are we voting for these morons???

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Haiti’s a Mess

It was already a mess pre-quake, but now things are really out of control over there. (NOTE: I’m almost certain some of the things discussed in the article are made overly dramatic by the press, because that’s what the press does)

People are bitching that the US is taking too much of a role in helping Haiti, while US Congress people from both parties are complaining that Barrack isn’t doing enough. And while we shouldn’t be the ones doing all the work, worldwide political expectations are that the US (being as close and generous as we are) needs to be at the core of the rescue and rebuilding effort.

The response from the private sector is amazing. Millions of dollars are being channeled into relief funds. It is really unfortunate that Haiti:

  • Lost most of its leaders in the quake, so there’s no central authority to keep the country together.
  • The country was already riddled with poverty and corruption, which meant everything was falling apart.
  • The country’s natural environment was destroyed by deforestation, which is causing massive soil erosion. Most of the island is falling into the sea.
  • Other nations are in no real place to help, with economic and military priorities already stretched thin.
  • And due to the poor infrastructure of Haiti, aid takes forever to kick in, even if it’s right there, ready to be dispersed.

I’m rolling my eyes at the people who are – for some imagined reason in their puny heads – unsympathetic with Haiti’s population. Most of them weren’t living in poverty out of choice, and now most of them aren’t dying/living in ruins out of choice. Natural disasters suck, and we need to realize the plight of other HUMAN BEINGS.

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MEMO: I Am Not Dead

Wholkins: Hey. Hey! It’s you! You’re not dead!
McClaud: Who said I was dead?
Wholkins: Your blog hasn’t been updated in like forever.
McClaud: I’ve been busy.
Wholkins: You’ve been depressed?
McClaud: Somewhat. I’m still waiting for someone to hire me.
Wholkins: Man, sorry.
McClaud: I got a hit, though. Some company named YOH wants to hire me for military work.
Wholkins: I thought you were done with the military.
McClaud: It’s work. Classified work.
Wholkins: So they’ve sunk as low to hire a dead, depressed guy.
McClaud: FFFFFFFFFFFFF
Wholkins: Hang in there, you still have two months before you have to panic.
McClaud: Still – want to be employed.
Wholkins: Could be worse. Could be putting cover letters on TPS reports.
McClaud: Oh God, I hope not.

There are days, and then there are days. Some days, I wish Tycho and I could play a game.

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Disappointed in New Jersey

Man, Lord Omlette should go out and crack some skulls in his state’s governing body. Fuck this bullshit.

I had hopes that maybe something in Sparky’s part of the world would actually work this time. I always set myself up for disappointment when it comes to New Jersey.

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Go Crimson Tide

Not that Texas didn’t do an awesome job near the end there to try and win. That Gilbert kid really came through. He’s the QB to watch in the Big 12 next year.

Unfortunately, like many of their BBQ grills, they ran out of propane and sputtered to defeat (and even threw two interceptions).

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Dragon Age: Origins

A great game, really. Probably the best RPG that I’ve played in a loooooooong time. Fable 2 doesn’t hold a candle to DA:O.

And now that I’ve mostly conquered that game, I’m going to start hammering away to finish all the achievements in Saint’s Row 2.

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