WSJ photo change-up

I understand regional differences in editorial selection for newspapers and different editions based on a kind of soft “stop the presses,” but really WSJ, are you pandering to us in the “Pro-America” parts of the country?

At least we should be grateful the cadet wasn’t reading “Goin’ Rogue”

The national edition on WSJ.com. Notice the four stars which usually indicates a later edition.
The national edition on WSJ.com. Notice the four stars (three on the OH edition below) which usually indicates a later edition.
The edition I got this morning. Wondering how wide the circulation of that photo is.
The edition I got this morning. Wondering how wide the circulation of that photo is.

Sarah Palin, please grow up, shut up, go away or learn some English

Sarah Palin (on loan from CNN.com)
Sarah Palin (on loan from CNN.com)

In a CNN.com blog post yesterday, Ms. Palin is quoted as saying:

I would think we all tear up during the national anthem at the beginning of a baseball game, don’t we? That’s an alikeness between Alaskans and New Yorkers.

Sigh. I think she meant to say something like “common bond” or “the bonds that united as as a nation” or even “similarity.” I am beginning to suspect she makes up words as she goes. She reminds me of Damon Wayans’ malaprop character on In Living Color. Malaprop is a big word, so I linked it up, in case Ms. Palin is reading… oh, never mind.

It really is time for the smart guys to be in charge. The beer-drinking buddies, the “Joe the Plumbers” are not the future of this country, they are its past. It is not cool to be dumb. It never was.

In recent decades, we’ve seen the damage one dumb man can do. We’ve also seen the damage a highly provincial man can do. Neither was good for this country as one led to high inflation and a hostage crises and the other led to wars, loss of a moral compass and submission to mob fear.

I’m not sure how many bloggers remained “anonymous” about their feelings on Sarah Palin. That women created a blog wake so deep and fast that if you didn’t attach your name to it, your blog was a waste of time to write or read. There was nothing about anonymity or boredom in that ride.

We’ve had a taste of what a smart Sarah Palin would be like. We call her Tina Fey. And the real thing pales in comparison to the imitation.

Warm humanity in technology

The Browns
The Browns
About a year ago, I found The Browns on Amazon.com in a random search prompted by the memory of “I heard the bluebird sing” from my puppyhood. I bought the album and couldn’t wait to play it.

Well, I should have because the sound that came out of my speaker was crystal clear and remastered from the original recording. What a disappointment.

My memory included not only the melody and words but also the pop and hiss of a diamond needle in a groove on a well-worn vinyl record. Yeah, I still like the album and I’m getting used to it, but it really isn’t the same. I’m thinking of “remastering” my own version of the songs and laying a track of pop and hiss over the track.

Then, today I downloaded “Big Rock Candy Mountain” from the O brother, Where art thou? soundtrack. There it was, in all it’s low-tech glory, popping and hissing all over the place. Wow! Heaven again.

So, Apple, if you are listening, why not provide an “LP” choice for us in your iTunes Store for music recorded pre-1986? Or, better yet, why doesn’t someone come up with a service that lays down a “pop and hiss” track on any music purchased digitally? not sure what the market is, but I’m pretty sure some GenY, living in his parent’s basement, blogging in his pajamas can easily write something like this and get into the biz.

Truemors was being goofy.

So here are my comments to 

Palin Calls Bloggers “Kids in Pajamas…in Their Parents’ Home”

Here is the quote from the Fox News site:

–QUOTE–

VAN SUSTEREN: Is there anything else that has been raised or said about you in the media, either during the convention — I mean, during the campaign or since the campaign ended, that you think you need to address that has been, you know, an allegation about you?

 

PALIN: Well, unfortunately, early on, there are a tremendous number of examples that we can give regarding my record and things that could have, should have been so easily corrected if — if the media would have taken one step further and — and investigated a little bit, not just gone on some blogger probably sitting there in their parents’ basement, wearing their pajamas, blogging some kind of gossip or — or a lie regarding, for instance, the — the discussion about who was Trig’s real mom? You know, Was it one of her daughters or was she faking her pregnancy?

–UNQUOTE–

Yes, it is true that she does not say ALL bloggers blog in pajamas in their parents home, but she is stereotyping bloggers much like, oh, I dunno.. like what a GOP group did for Obama on what African-Americans eat, for example… 

http://www.dogwalkblog.com/2008/10/18/the-price-of-stupid-and-ignorance/  even though it may be true of SOME African-Americans… Couple that with the tone in her voice (check out YouTube) and her reference really is unmistakable.

Sarah Palin is just not that bright. My God, the sentence structure and subject-predicate agreement alone is horrifying! Lawyers would be endlessly employed trying to figure out which “is” meant “is” or “was” or what “is” really is. 

She is GREAT for energizing the DNC base to vote against her and non-stop entertainment for humans and canine alike, but presidential? Hmmm… no.

Posted by email from rufus’s posterous

Never confuse ‘clear thought’ with crap

Last Saturday, Mark Lilla, a professor of humanities at Columbia University, wrote an article in the WSJ titled The Perils of ‘Populist Chic’, What the rise of Sarah Palin and populism means for the conservative intellectual tradition. It was well-thought out and objectively argued. In short, it explains why presidential candidates need to go bowling and drinking beer, why smart girls get teased in math class and why nobody like a know-it-all. Kinda.

Anyway, I tell you this so that you are intriqued enough to read the article and draw your own conclusions, but also to introduce Mr. Peter Noel Murray, Ph.D who wrote a letter to the editor, saying, among other things:

Prof. Lilla proves that highly educated minds can be small and prejudiced when he describes Gov. Sarah Palin as “ignorant” and “provincial.” What this Columbia professor really means is that she isn’t Ivy League educated and isn’t from New York City.

Well, I’m just a mutt that grew up in the Frogtown area of St. Paul and graduated with a BA in English from the public university, the University of Minnesota and even I think Sarah Palin is ignorant and provincial. Moreover, I think she is rather stupid in that she does not show a capacity to learn as evidenced by her more recent interviews (still reading the keywords off the notecards!) Furthermore, she exhibits distain for others around her and appears incapable of empathy. 

But mostly, she is stupid. No, really she is.

The president should be really smart, almost geeky smart. The fact that we have a smart president-elect who is also a great orator and empath is a giant plus. Let’s stop “mocking him” through sneers, jokes and sarcastic asides. After all, he did what Sarah Palin and John McCain could not.

Posted by email from rufus’s posterous

Brought to you by some upstanding, God-fearing Christians

Put up before Halloween and remains in the front of the house.
Put up before Halloween and remains in the front of the house.
The family down the street flies the flag every day, even puts a light on it at night and takes it in during the rain. At Christmas time, they decorate their house with a large Nativity star, a manger set and a large sign that reads “Jesus is the Reason for the Season.”

It makes me sad that they chose to put up a ghost in a sheet, with a large sign that reads “BOObama” to show their displeasure with Barack Obama. While their intent might have been merely to illustrate the “scariness” of Mr. Obama’s political policies, the ghost is just a tad more than racist. I will think better of them and choose to believe that they might just be merely ignorant of this nations’ cultural history.

Showing support for your candidate is always ok. Tearing down the other candidate just doesn’t seem like the Christian thing to do.

105 feet… so close, yet…

The letter of the law, but not the spirit.
The letter of the law, but not the spirit.

This was outside my polling place in Ohio. Notice that the McCain/Palin sign is as close as the law allows. Clearly, the letter of the law is being invoked, but not the spirit. I’m pretty certain that an over-eager supporter put this there, but this really is not helping put your candidate in the best light.

Joe Mamma?

First, just watch the video. All the way to the end.

I know Alaska is part of these United States, but how ignorant of racism is Sarah Palin? It is almost as surreal to watch as John McCain singing “bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran” to a Beach Boys tune! Before she can lead America, she needs to understand that Real America is made up of many different cultures. And what works as a long-standing line to a “knock-knock type” joke by African Americans is used as a slam by whites to demonstrate how ignorant and inarticulate Blacks are.

For those of us who perhaps did not grow up in the ’60s-’70s when Black culture was taking hold, the joke goes something like this:

“Hey man, Joe was looking for you.”
“Joe who?”
“Joe mama!”

Or alternatively,
Hey man, I was getting it on with Joe last night”
“Yeah? Joe who?”
“Joe mama!”

The sign was not cute, adorable or in any way clever. It was racist. By not really knowing that, Sarah Palin has once again demonstrated her inability to learn and lead.

Palin popularity not the same as ability

On Morning Joe today, Joe Scarborough sat in his chair and said with a straight face: (I am paraphrasing as I was so dumbfounded at what I was hearing that I could not work the TiVo fast enough)

Governor Palin has been able to attract the largest viewership ever for SNL, the largest for any VP debate and the largest for any party convention. She is an asset to the GOP because this.

Wow! The same logic then would hold true for traffic accidents and the Jerry Springer Show! I tuned it to all three events just to be able to watch — with incredulity — how the GOP was seriously floating a hockey mom from Alaska whose thirst for power clearly out-matches her ability to lead. I suspect that many viewers also had the same motivation.

Without the spin afterwards and the constant hammering of the pundits about her performance, most viewers would have seen it for what is was; an undereducated, over-ambitious person, out of her depths with the competition and the issues.

Joe, this is not high school. Winning the Homecoming Queen title is not the same as being elected Vice-president and possible president of one of the leading nations of the world. Just showing up is not the same as doing the work.

Do they talk american?

Here’s a tip when running for President of the United States of America: Pay attention in English class.

From an email on October 18, 2008 from the McCain/Palin camp, they write:

Help John McCain and Sarah Palin win in November!

With less than 18 days until Election Day our volunteer activities are in full swing. With your help here in Ohio John McCain and Sarah Palin will win on November 4th. To sign up for volunteer shifts at your local campaign office please click here!

What they meant to write was: “With fewer than 18 days until Election Day…” in addition to the comma after the dependent clause.. (…Election Day, for those who need a nudge.)

Guess The Elements of Style is one more thing Palin doesn’t read. These are the people we want in charge of reforming education in America? Perhaps what is really needed is just a federal mandate to lower the bar for everyone. Then, we can all look smart.

The problem of typos in the McCain camp is systemic. Take a look at his education issue page (just the last paragraph will do ya!) Is the world moving too fast that they can’t take a few extra seconds to proof their published material? Or, are they really that ignorant? Perhaps Peggy Noonan is right.

Stay in school, kids. Or, maybe just drop out now and get your name on a ballot somewhere. You’re probably already qualified!

The $5,000 health insurance question

I am a self-employed dog who buys his own health insurance. I’ve been listening to all these pundits and political candidates talking about government “getting out of the way” so individuals can buy their own health insurance. “Let the free market do it’s thing” is the cry from most of them.

I have come to the very firm conclusion that those who advocate most strongly for individuals buying their own plan have never actually had to buy health insurance for themselves or their family. If they had, they would be too aghast and shocked to get any punditry out.

Here are the “facts” of getting your own health insurance:

Free Market Economy
If there is a big pot of money out there to get for the asking, health insurance companies will belly up to the bar and stick their snouts in it. If every American family was given $5,000 to buy their own health insurance, that same insurance will now be $5,000 more expensive to get. They really don’t want to sell individual plans because there is no economy of scale. Individuals call the insurance office whereas employer-based plans get calls get pushed to the company HR department.

Your BMI will never be good enough
Neither will your lifestyle, health history or FICO Score. In Ohio, if you have driven or ridden on a 2-wheel motorized vehicle in the past 24 months or have a motorcycle endorsement on your driver’s license, your premiums are automatically adjusted 20% higher. Left to its own devices, health insurance companies will only insure healthy, low-risk people who can afford to pay the premiums. Insurance companies are pro-profit organizations whose only goal is to collect more in premiums than they pay out in claims.

What you NEED insurance for, they won’t cover
Really, don’t get cancer or a heart-attack. Don’t have a genetic disease or any respiratory condition. All of these will be excluded from coverage. You can’t even buy coverage for a pre-existing condition; nobody will sell it to you for any price.

Your rates will go up regardless of activity
Year to year, your rates will go up about 12%-30% each year if you don’t use the plan; more if you do. You are forced to shop deals every year like cell phone plans. Every company will entice new buyers (well, the healthy ones) into a policy while jacking up the rates on their existing customers. I don’t know why they do this as it makes more sense that costs would be lower to care for customers you have than to find and convince customers you don’t.

So, McCain and Palin, the $5,000 for Americans to buy their own insurance is just crap and campaign talk. Just for grins, I went out to a few places and priced out Palin’s family, not mentioning the minor-aged pregnancy and the Down’s syndrome child. For a PPO plan with a $2,500 deductible and 20% co-pay plans were at $800-$1,106 a month, depending on whether you wanted a Blue Cross class or a no-name brand. That is $9,600-$13,272 a year NOT including the doctor visit costs or the deductible of $2,500 you will pay before benefits kick in. Forget about the no-deductible plans; they just don’t have them.

$5,000 isn’t so much money any more. In fact, it is almost nothing when buying health insurance.

Helping Americans with health insurance costs is not the answer. Helping Americans get health care that they need is. The difference is not inconsequential. When the Federal Government makes assistance money available to help pay for things like drugs, education and health care, the only thing that happens is the cost of these things goes up.

We should all understand that public health, education and welfare affects us all. When individuals are increasingly delaying medical care because they can’t afford to go to the doctor, eventually we all pay in higher public health costs. The same goes for education, but that is an entirely different post.

When we agree that what affects me affects you, we will start moving forward together as a healthy nation with a strong infrastructure. The richest country in the world should not have its citizens wondering how close to bankruptcy a heart attack or accident will bring them.

Plain talk Palin email

Well, not really plain talk, but we’ll translate.

I received this email from Sarah Palin…. well, not from her personally, but from the Palin-McCain Campaign. I’ve attached it as a PDF file for you to read, but here are some highlights.

1. She encourages me to vote TODAY because you can vote early in Ohio. I read this to be:

Vote for me BEFORE you see my performance in the debates tonight. You can’t change your mind after you vote.

2. Does the GOP now support unions:

As the mother of five and the wife of a proud union member, I understand what it takes in these difficult economic times…

3. Oh, wait, in the next paragraph, she says:

By promoting small businesses, keeping taxes low and fighting for good jobs for all Americans, we will work each and every day to improve our economy

Ok, but do small businesses now have to hire only union labor which drives their labor costs up? Do we get tax credits for hiring union members? I’m really, really confused.

4. New voters? Oh my God, what is that all about?

Barack Obama’s campaign has already proven they will stop at nothing to win this election, and they’re already flooding the polls with new voters…

Maybe only wrinkled up old people should be allowed to vote??

Tonight is going to be interesting!