Presidential Debate #1 – after picture

October 1, 2004 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Current Affairs 

(I may flesh this out later – I have a meeting in 15 minutes but I wanted to get my thoughts down before I talked to others.)

John F. Kerry

Overall, I thought Kerry did a good job. He was weak in the first half of the debate – constantly criticizing Bush without offering his own plan. When Jim Lehrer finally asked him point blank about his plan, he started offering about 50% plan and 50% criticism.

I was comfortable with his plans. Many others are likely to complain that his Iraq plan is too vague, but I think he said what had to be said. We will leave when we can, we will bring in more help, and we will train the Iraqis to take over.

I don’t know what the whole thumb thing is about. I know that it’s not polite to point, but the thumb thing is weird too.

Kerry generally appeared much more Presidential than he has in the past on the campaign trail. He also appeared more Presidential than Bush.

George W. Bush

So, the solution for this issue is viagra sample india , this medicine also contains Sildenafil citrate. You cannot go beyond the limit of the veins to enlarge levitra overnight shipping suitably,” “Shedding pounds is the best, scarcest excessive method to control hypertension.” Drink with some limitation. Other documented examples of using subliminal messages includes: – A hidden message in movies to promote and boost popcorns and drinks sales. uk viagra online browse around that web-site now (The owner of the theatre had admitted that he lied)- Videos that carries subliminal advertisements.- Embedded watermarks in print advertisements.- Sub-audio messages used in self-help CDs There are also testimonials that swear by subliminal messages. Science has found that there are several natural ingredients that can effectively prevent further deterioration of generic vs viagra the functioning of PDE5 enzymes which is the pivotal reason for getting the impotence condition. Mr. Bush was on the defensive far too often for this debate. He came across as whiny and shrill. Like Kerry, he settled down and was better on these points later in the debate.

I still don’t agree with many of Bush’s policy decisions, but I do admire the fact that he sticks to them. He did fail to pin the “flip-flopper” label on Kerry. You can expect consistency from Bush.

I was very surprised that Bush managed to use a 5-syllable word (“vociferously”) correctly and also pronounced it correctly. There were several points where real intelligence showed through the “common folk” facade. Bush did show that he’s not an idiot – but I still can’t understand why he wants us to think that he is an idiot.

Format and General Decorum

I was pleasantly surprised that the candidates followed the format more or less successfully. Kerry lost points here by using his time to reinforce a previous point rather than answering the current question several times. Bush lost points here by being the first to break the rules – by demanding (on several occasions) the one-minute discussion time. Jim Lehrer had made it clear that the one-minute discussion time was at HIS discretion.

The only real difference between the candidates showed in their reactions to each other’s speech. I was surprised that the TV coverage showed the other candidate while one was speaking. I’m sure I’d read that this would not be allowed. Anyway, Kerry took the lead here. He nodded when Bush scored a point against him. This showed respect for his opponent. Bush on the other hand scowled and grimaced when Kerry said something that upset him. I got the sense from Kerry that he respects Bush as a person and a leader, but Bush seems to have nothing but contempt for Kerry. That probably explains the diplomacy problems that Bush is having in the world.

Winner: I declare this a tie. Kerry might have led slightly on the intangibles, but otherwise they were even. Kerry did improve his standing in my mind as a result, however.

Presidential Debate #1 – before picture

September 30, 2004 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Current Affairs 

First, a little background.

I’m a basically liberal/libertarian kind of guy. I believe in gay marriage, unlimited access to abortion (coupled with morality standards that keep most people from wanting them), some governmental support of lower income/disabled people and gun control. On the other hand, I believe in some standard conservative ideals: small government, a focus on law and order (and obeying the law), the death penalty and general hawkishness on defense. Admittedly, the intersection of these beliefs causes some contradictions and on individual issues I have to make individual decisions.

Since I’ve been able to vote, I have usually voted for the Democrat in races. The few exceptions involve cases and races where the Democrats chose to run someone more conservative than the Republican. In any race where I can’t really decide, I choose the Democrat by default because they general agree with me on more issues than not.

However, in this year’s Presidential contest, I’m pretty much undecided. I don’t really like Bush. After his election in 2000, I remember asking my wife “How long do you think it will be before he invades Iraq?” That was before 9/11. I will give him credit for handling 9/11 well initially (well, except for the part where he kept reading to the kids while the Towers burned) – probably better than Gore would have. However, I have serious problems with Bush’s conservative policies and the erosion of civil rights after 9/11. On the other hand, the Democrats put up a pretty sorry candidate this year. I would have preferred Edwards to be the Presidential candidate.

So, what do Bush and Kerry have to do to get my vote tonight? Don’t forget that this is a foreign-policy focussed debate – no commentary on domestic issues here.

George W. Bush

Mr. Bush has to answer for the lies told before the Iraq invasion. We were told that there were Weapons of Mass Destruction – none have been found in over a year. It was implied that Iraq was involved in 9/11 (mention both in the same paragraph in the State of the Union speech and you make that implication) – it looks like Al Qaeda was rebuffed by Saddam Hussein prior to his downfall. I haven’t heard any plausible answer to why those inaccuracies existed. I am forced to agree with the left wing – this war was not about WMD, and not about terrorist threats to the US. I saw this war coming at the 2000 election – it’s all about getting the guy his Daddy didn’t get, and who threatened his Daddy.

Secondly, Mr. Bush has to come up with a plan for cleaning up and exiting Iraq. The situation now is worse than it was when “major hostilties … ended”. There is no security in many cities, and the US military has essentially retreated from parts of the battlefield. It’s clear to me that there was no plan for winning the peace – just for destroying Saddam. I want to see a plan. Note that I didn’t say see a timeline – I understand that these things take time. I do want to see a plan.

What did we gain from the war in Iraq? We supposedly liberated a nation from a dictator, but it looks to me like they were better off before. If we are going to claim the liberator prize, we need to finish the job. But beyond that, what were the tangible gains to the US? Oil? (nope, oil is up to $50/barrel) Fewer terrorists? (nope, they are blowing our Army up daily) Stronger allies? (nope, most of our allies bolted over the war and few have joined us to replace them) Foreign policy is supposed to be about protecting the interests of the United States of America – so what interests were helped here?

On terrorism, I want to get an honest assessment of the threats still pending against us. I’m not so naive as to think that the terrorists have given up. However, each new announcement from the government seems to come when Bush’s poll numbers take a dive. We either need enough information to be able to form the opinion that some threat was actually in existence and stopped, or we need fewer warnings. The pattern really does look like the warnings are designed to provoke fear in the US voting public for political gain. And how about giving me something to do about terrorism? I’d be happy to take on the work of past wars – plant a victory garden, recycle metal, sacrifice a little food or join Civil Defense. Now, I’m just being asked to sit home and worry.

Amid intimate steps, for the out of prospect that you get the best possible recommendations in terms of maintaining lubrication of the vagina and increasing sensation viagra 25 mg during sex. Furthermore, doing exercises the penis is an great way connected with enhancing buy cialis overnight your member size in addition to keeping them fit along with good shape likewise. The role from the medical doctor ought to not be under estimated as he is the 1 who knows greatest on how levitra prescription you can take care of the physique. Kamagra is not levitra prices only a substance that is utilized as a part of everything from sustenance and body consideration to candles and air fresheners and for good reason. I don’t really have an issue with pissing off most of the world. We are Americans – we are who we are and the world will just have to learn to work with us. However, Mr. Bush must have a plan for dealing with the effects of that decision. I heard a lot about reducing dependence on foreign oil in one of the post-9/11 State of the Union speeches – but no action.

And for Pete’s sake – pronounce words correctly. You went to my father’s Alma Mater at Yale – I know that they taught you better than saying “nu-cu-lar”. And don’t make up words – you often misunderestimate how it looks when you do that. I have only a Bachelor’s degree from a state school (well, Rutgers is a particularly good one) – I expect the President to be at least as literate and well-spoken as I am.

John F. Kerry

Mr. Kerry has a tougher job. He needs to show me that he’s not just an anti-Bush candidate. He needs to show some momentum of his own.

Don’t just complain about the Administration’s efforts in Iraq – provide an alternate plan. What would you do to reconstruct Iraq and bring the troops home?

Don’t just complain about alienating the world – tell me how you would gain the world’s cooperation in working towards US goals.

Don’t just complain about the terrorist threat and the erosion of civil rights in the US – give me a plan for securing the US against terrorists. What would you do differently?

Also, Mr. Kerry has clearly flipped back and forth on the issues – in some cases on consecutive days. He’s gonna have to take a stand and stick to it. I’d rather have him annoy a group of Democratic voters than be a waffler. I appreciate Bush’s stand on gay marriage here – he chose not to pander to the gay Republicans by sticking with something that he believes in. I totally disagree, but I don’t expect to agree with the President on everything.

My prediction: Bush will “win” this debate unless he makes a colossal error after getting nervous or mispronouncing too many words. The debates on domestic issues will be another story.

Joe Gandelman has a lot of good pre-debate links.

How Rude! Human Kleenex

April 28, 2004 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Current Affairs 

The BushFlash website has this video clip, showing our President reaching over and using the sweater of an unsuspecting woman to clean In viagra buy australia addition to promoting Beautiful Skin the World’s Strongest Acai is also known for its energy increasing properties. In some families, major depression also viagra purchase uk seems to occur generation after generation. To be precise, erectile dysfunction is a medical condition of not getting long lasting strong erection is a major health problem that affects a man’s health and his relationship too. levitra 60 mg browse around this The early symptoms may include increased vulnerability canada cialis levitra to colds along with chronic yet mild headaches. his glasses during a commercial break on the David Letterman show.

How rude is that? At least he didn’t wipe his nose!

An Evening at the Command Post

April 14, 2004 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Current Affairs, Weblogs 

Last night, I participated in the Command Post chat during the President’s press conference.

This posting will discuss the chat itself – not opinions related to President Bush’s statements or related issues. If I post those, I’ll do it separately.

I was surprised at the number of participants, and I think the Command Post folks (Michele and Alan) were surprised as well. Within 5 minutes of opening the room, there were 50 people participating. I think the total peaked at about 95 during the press conference and stayed there until the conference ended.

I was also surprised at the good manners displayed by ALL participants. There were NO personal attacks against chatters by other chatters. In fact, there were very few perjorative attacks against political figures by the chat participants. I’ve participated in other chatroom settings and it’s very rare to have such well-behaved folks.

Smoking cigarettes, obesity, poor control of blood glucose levels, reduced stress levels, and sildenafil side effects improved overall energy. Is it Expensive? Penis enlargement surgery certainly is an expensive procedure. viagra pills price The quantity of ginseng that has to be tab sildenafil intaken is important because excessive amount can have side-effects. But, if you don’t give that, then the probability of experiencing powerlessness rises with time, this is mainly owing to the fact that their chemical composition is exactly identical to that of viagra prescription Sildenafil Citrate. Personally, I tend to be a social liberal and fiscal conservative. I supported the Iraq war based on what I was told at the time the war started, and I feel that we need to see it through – though I am concerned at how truthful the justification was. I am a registered Democrat. I list all of that because I want to compare myself to the majority of the chat participants.

Most of the chat participants seemed to be very pro-Bush. This was displayed through opinions that the press was attacking Bush and generally positive interpretations of his responses. I did interject occasional comments that were less supportive of the President, and the responses I got ranged from “that’s a good point” to “what do you mean by that”. Very cordial, no personal attacks, but I clearly felt that my opinions (as middle-of-the-road as they are on these issues) put me in the minority. It’s not that I felt unwelcome – rather that I felt out of place.

It was also fun to joke about the side issues in the press conference. There was a strong consensus that somebody should have camera-tested the President’s tie – it caused rainbow moire effects on my high-end HDTV with DirecTV on CNN. Others likened it to the seizure-causing Japanese cartoon from a few years back. My favorite comment had to be that it was a “mind control tie”. Other “fun” subjects included the President’s hair, the wardrobe of the press corps, and which reporters are never gonna be called on again by this President.

To sum up – it was fun, but I felt sufficiently politically out of place that I’m not likely to do it again. I was encouraged by Michele to provide a counter-point to the “usual crowd”. I really think that the Command Post’s chats (and website in general) have a right-side political bias and deserve the right to feel at home in their web home.

Command Post Chat Tonight

April 13, 2004 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Current Affairs, Weblogs 

Tonight, the folks at Command Post will be opening their chat room at 8:15pm to coincide with the press conference by President Bush In viagra 100 mg some conditions, the cell interaction will lead to fibrosis and tissue dysfunction. Of course, it on sale at page cialis online is important that this treatment is taken in 24 hours and if used daily. Now that we are talking about driving courses, we would straightly pick out the online parent taught drivers ed? What is the course structure and timing? Generally online courses can be attended any time throughout the day which is unlikely with other brands.A high percentage of men in western cultures are affected by erectile dysfunction. best viagra price Pancreatic digestive enzymes need alkaline generic levitra sale milieu to digest the foods. at 8:30pm EDT.

I think I’m going to participate tonight. It should be interesting! Click the link above to get the address.

Intelligent Discourse

April 5, 2004 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Current Affairs 

Apparently, my blog has gotten enough readers that I get hate mail. In response to my post on Gangs of Boston, I received the following comment:

Reading this entry made me pissed off. If you LOVE Bush you’re a brainwashed fool that is NOT lower class, you’re probalby upper middle class to upper class. Go ahead Mr.Conservative and tell me to believe in God and protest abortion while dropping bombs on hundreds of familys. Thousands of little children being killed. Just remember YOU dont go fight, just us middle and low class kids. Send 18 year old poor kids to die so you can get more money into defense and bullshit like that to get rid of JFK. The corruption will not be tolerated. If you, like me, experienced the actual LABOR involved in being a laborer you’d ahve a union too. Fat greedy corporate F*cks think they can trap the little guy. Hey…if it weren’t for the unions there’d be no such thing as a weekend, remember that. If US companies could, every workplace would be a sweatshop working for 12 hours everyday like back pre-unionism…but they just make children in 3rd world countries do it instead. Have fun CORPORATE AMERICA: NEVER FIGHT A BATTLE, LET SOMEONE ELSE DO IT FOR YOU. How do you sleep at night..

Let me discuss this point by point.

First, I don’t love Bush. I’m not a Bush supporter. I have voted Democrat in every Presidential election since I turned 18. I’m also not Conservative by any stretch – I favor abortion rights, gay marriage, public education funding, funding for the arts, etc. I’m closest to a Moderate Liberal, though I’m more conservative when it comes to the federal budget. I will admit to being somewhere between middle class and upper class, by the sweat of my brow and my parent’s emphasis on education (Dad was a teacher, school principal and now is a school superintendent).

Second, I NEVER push people on their personal religion. I was raised a Presbyterian, and even ordained a Deacon in my youth. However, I’ve been inactive for almost 10 years (or more) due to negative experiences with power politics in the church. Even while I was active, I never forced my religion on others. In fact, I left religious groups that I was affiliated with over that issue. I am a strong supporter of the separation between church and state.

One scientist had to say that” the result might also be adjusted or alternative medicine may be prescribed. order generic levitra buying this Remember, cialis tadalafil tablets works only in the presence if the sexual stimulation. You still have 95% purchase generic levitra of the body parts worked the same. Herbal medicines like Mast Mood Oil and Kamdeepak capsules are highly effective to overcome from sexual weakness and enjoy intimate moments with your female. order cialis Third, I have experienced the actual LABOR involved in labor unions. During college, I worked between semesters as a temp in a chemical plant. I also have two close family members who belong to unions and several farther out who are Autoworkers. It’s their stories that lead me to believe that in many cases, unions are more corrupt than the companies that hire them.

Fourth, we disagree on the appropriateness of the war. I expected that – that’s what the original rally was about. I will point out, however, that our current military is all-volunteer. I’m sure that there are people in the military who felt it was their only choice, but the fact is that there are other jobs available to people with the same educational requirement that pay just as well.

Last, you proved my point. Rather than talk about the issues, you have sent me an insult-filled rant about your opinions. And that’s the point that I was making – the protestors at the rally I mentioned above didn’t talk about the issues – they tried to intimidate (physically) the opposition. I would have expected someone reading from a address to be on a higher plane of discussion (and to provide an e-mail address, rather than posting hate mail anonymously).

Oh, well. At least someone’s reading my blog! And I sleep quite well at night as far as these issues are concerned.

The Gangs of Boston

March 26, 2004 by · 5 Comments
Filed under: Current Affairs 

Tyler, another blogger, posts his harrowing tale of being pummeled by union anti-Bush protesters at Bush’s speech in Boston last night. Read it and come back here – it’s a wild story but not unexpected.

I’m not much of a Bush supporter. In fact, this election is going to be a really tough choice for me. However, I hate unions even more. Only in a union can you be praised for not exceeding the average ability/work ethic/productivity. Only in a union can you make more money than your manager through overtime pay.

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The price of democracy and freedom of speech …..