Category Archives: Voting

Self Protection for the Gun Control Crowd

My husband John believes that the whole reason that the NRA is bat-shit crazy about getting everybody guns is so that bit by bit, everybody will become afraid enough of their own shadows and/or that of their neighbors that they will have no choice but to buy their own gun to protect themselves from everybody else in the US who has one and is likely to come a-callin’.  And then, of course, the gun manufacturers would get even more blood money and pay more dues!  It’s a win-win for the NRA and the manufacturers!  The fact that the country will lose is just collateral damage.

John may be on to something.  Because just today I read that there are folks in the NRA who are advocating that non-eagle-eye folks have the right to guns, too.  Not only people who need corrective lenses, but folks who cannot see at all.  In a less politically correct time we might have called them “Blind Folks.”

Now, now, don’t get all worried.  According to Dom Raso, the guy in this video, since blind folks have such good hearing, they don’t need to see what they’re shooting at. 

So the logical conclusion is that they will not just randomly start firing their guns around like irresponsible folks.  (Not that there are any irresponsible gun owners out there, natch.)  That makes me feel much better.

Now I grant you, there is scientific evidence that blind folks can hear better than those with better vision.  Still, I’m really not at all comfortable with the idea that one of my neighbors who is vision impaired might have a gun.  Well, not if he can put bullets into it and fire it, anyway.

But this discussion led me to a brilliant idea.  Now I know how I will protect myself during the apocolypse and/or the rapture and/or when the guvment’s jackbooted thugs come to my house.

I’m gonna make a sign:

Beware of The Jumpy Blind Woman with The Gun 

 

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Conspicuous consumption, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Elections, GOP, Gun control, Health and Medicine, Huh?, Humor, Hypocrisy, Law, Mental Health, Real Estate, Stupidity, Voting, Wild Beasts

Everybody Who Thinks Sen. John McCain Should Shut Up, Raise Your Hand!

Senator John McCain Is He Ever Right?

Senator John McCain
He’s Right this Time — He SHOULD Shut Up!

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Campaigning, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Elections, GOP, History, Huh?, Humor, Hypocrisy, Stupidity, Voting

Dilemma Resolved

First, thank you all who read my post Immoral Dilemma and offered words of comfort, advice and all manner of expressions that showed that my bloggin’ buddies really get me!

To anybody who didn’t read that or click on the link:  On Saturday, a GOP primary was held to choose the GOP’s candidate in my congressional district.  I detest the front-runner (I’ll show you why later on in this post).  Virginia primaries are open primaries — regardless of how you register, you can vote in either side’s primary.  However, this time, if you voted, you were required to swear an oath to support the GOP candidate in November.  My question was basically is swearing an oath, an illegitimate, possibly illegal, unethical oath binding?  Could I just go and vote and swear the oath and do as I pleased in November?  Could I go there intending to lie, even if I felt it was for an important goal.

Comments were on both sides of the question — and if you look at my answers to them, you will see that I went back and forth with each one.  Apparently, I sway with the gentlest of breezes.  Thank you all.  Truly.  Did I say that?  Yeah.  Well, thanks again.

I tossed and turned Saturday night, and did a lot of soul-searching for most of the day.  I read and considered everybody’s comments and realized that both sides were right, which is why I was having such a hard time.  But then just as I had to really make my decision, I read Mae’s (of Maesprose) comment:

Do what you feel is right but when you call someone a liar or not truthful – like the Republican party – remember, what you hate may become your own definition. Just sayin.

And I realized that she summed up (at the 11th hour as it were) just what I thought.  I’m not a liar.  And I don’t want to take on the characteristics of the GOP that I find so disgusting.  So, while on a long, thoughtful walk, I decided against going.

When I got home, though, I found that I had a little elf at home who was helping me.  My husband John had learned that, while they were calling it a “primary” it was really more of a “straw poll” — there were about 6 places around the district (which is huge) where Republicans were meeting in a large room where they would vote — no voting booths, no anonymity, no semblance of a real primary.  Names and registration were taken.

I would have been turned away at the door.

So in fact, the decision was made for me.  But I wouldn’t have gone — as much as I loved how Val of QBG Tilted Tiara suggested I look at it:

You do know acting like the enemy is nothing more than ‘going undercover’. Perfectly acceptable during wartime.

Predictably, the candidate I most feared won.  Barbara Comstock.  She is currently in the VA House of Delegates, where she has voted consistently against women’s interests, and bizarrely, against spending funds for transportation here in NOVa.  She worked as an opposition researcher for decades.  In fact, was one of the main people working on Travelgate and other Clinton-era scandals.  She is a pit bull.  If she ends up in Congress, she will make Daryl Issa look like an amateur.  She is a nasty piece of work.  And this district is so heavily gerrymandered, that she will be there for the rest of her life.

So it looks like I will be busy in the fall.

Thanks again to everybody who offered opinions, options, words of comfort.  You guys are the best.  Can I come and live in your political district?????

 

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Elections, GOP, Huh?, Hypocrisy, Law, Stupidity, Virginia, Voting, Wild Beasts

Obama Is A Weak Leader: A Generic Republican Interview

Do you ever feel like another blogger has occupied your brain?  Well I certainly did when I read this guest post by the brilliant  List of X one of my very favorite blogging buddies.  Please send him a message in the comments — a strong message!

*    *     *

From the start of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, every Republican leader and right-wing pundit has criticized Barack Obama for not being tough enough on Russians. If we could interview a generic Republican leader, the interview would go something like this…

Journalist: “Generic Republican Leader, would you have a few minutes to talk about Barack Obama’s response to the crisis in Ukraine?”

Generic Republican Leader: “Yeah, sure.”

Journalist: “Do you agree with the way Obama is handling the crisis?”

GRL: “I don’t. Obama has proved himself to be a weak leader. He needs to be strong, and get tough on Putin.”

Journalist: “And do what?”

GRL: “Obama needs to lead.”

Journalist: “How?”

GRL: “By being a strong and decisive leader.”

Journalist: “Which is…?”

GRL: “Which is the opposite of a weak leader like Obama.”

Journalist: “So what, do you think, is Obama’s weakness?”

GRL: “He’s not a strong leader.”

Journalist: “But what he should do to become a strong leader?”

GRL: “He should act decisively.”

Journalist: “And by ‘act” you mean…?

GRL: “Not mince words, like he does.”

Journalist: “Should military option be on the table?”

GRL: “All options should be on the table – military, diplomatic… but not vegetarian, I hate that option.”

Journalist: “Do you think it’s time for diplomacy?”

GRL: “No, it’s time to send Putin a message.”

Journalist: “But not for diplomacy?”

GRL: “No, because we’re just going to send a message, and we’re not interested in anything Putin has to say to us.”

Journalist: “So what message should Obama send to Putin?”

GRL: “It has to be strong message.”

Journalist: “About what?”

GRL: “That we’re strong and we’re not going to stand for it.”

Journalist: “And what should we do if Putin ignores our message?”

GRL: “We should act.”

Journalist: “Act how?”

GRL: “Decisively.”

Journalist: “But what should we do exactly?”

GRL: “We should put an end to Putin’s imperial ambitions.”

Journalist: “Would you oppose Obama if he proposed a military action?”

GRL: “Yes.”

Journalist: “Would you oppose Obama–

GRL: “Yes.”

Journalist: “Sorry, I haven’t actually finished the question.”

GRL: “Oh. I thought you did. What was the question?”

Journalist: “Would you oppose Obama–

GRL: “Yes.  Absolutely.  My answers still stands.”

Journalist: “So what do you propose?”

GRL: “We need to send him a strong message.

Journalist: “To Putin?”

GRL: “No, to Obama. What about Putin?”

Journalist: “You also wanted to send a strong message to Putin.”

GRL: “Right. Then we need to send two strong messages. Or we can just send it to Obama and copy Putin on it.”

Journalist: “Shouldn’t Obama, as president, send the message himself?”

GRL: “No, he’s too weak.”

Journalist: “But it’s just a message. Obama can just type it and press ‘Send’.”

GRL: “No, Obama needs to physically print the message and walk to the mailbox to send it. Otherwise Putin will see that Obama is too weak to even walk to a mailbox. We need the president who can not only talk the talk, but also walk the walk. We need a strong president!”

Journalist: “Do you think Putin is a strong leader?”

GRL: “Yes, definitely.”

Journalist: “So do you think Obama should be more like Putin?”

GRL: “………….Have I told you that Obamacare will kill three million jobs?”

Journalist: “Thank you for the interview. Any last words for our readers, Generic Republican Leader?”

GRL: “Yes. Vote GOP in 2014! Unlike Obama, we have a clear, strong, and decisive foreign policy!”

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Filed under Bloggin' Buddies, Campaigning, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Elections, GOP, Guest Posts, Huh?, Humor, Politics, Stupidity, Voting, Wild Beasts

The Congressman from A Galaxy Far, Far Away

You know that old phrase “Truth is stranger than fiction?”  It’s true!  And it is, in this case, beyond sight and sound.  Which makes it much stranger than fiction in my book.

I learned this today when I was watching a news report about the Texas primary election, and Congressman Steve Stockman (R-Beyond the O-Zone).

OK, I wasn’t really watching it.  I was reading a blog post.

But John was watching it.  And he froze the frame with the DVR shouting:

“Now I know why Stockman is so weird!  Look at him!  What IS he?”

I looked back at my husband with love, respect and concern for his sanity; I didn’t have a clue what he was talking about.

What IS he?” my husband of 27 years repeated.

As a political junkie and movie lover, John gets a special thrill when worlds collide.  And if outer space is involved, so much the better.  And tonight they did.

Because Steve Stockman, (R-Area 57) is clearly not of this earth.  And finally, there was proof.  Verification.  Actual photographic evidence.  And only the best sleuth/husband has so far identified it:

The evidence is right there on his face. Photo credit:  http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com

The evidence is right there on his face.
Photo credit: http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com

As John rightly pointed out, Congressman Stockman is from another planet.  Remember Men in Black?

Stockman is clearly a Ballchinian.

I’m guessing that you now understand why I married this guy.

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Elections, GOP, Huh?, Humor, Politics, Stupidity, Voting

Are You Surprised?

I’m shocked!  Shocked!

Gallup Poll Finds

Democrats More Compassionate;

Republicans More Psychopathic

I did not make this up.  Nope.  But I’m happy to pass it on:

Gallup headlined on 28 January 2014, “Democrats and Republicans Differ on Top Priorities,” and reported that the biggest difference between supporters of the two Parties concerned “The environment,” where 71% of Democrats said it’s important to them, versus only 32% of Republicans who did: a whopping difference of 39%, between the two Parties, considered that issue to be important. The second-biggest difference was on “The distribution of income and wealth”: 72% of Democrats, versus only 38% of Republicans – a 34% difference. Third came “Poverty and homelessness”: 82% of Democrats, versus 53% of Republicans – a 29% difference. Fourth came “Education”: 91% of Democrats, versus 70% of Republicans – a 21% difference.

Here were the four issues on the conservative end, the four issues where Republicans scored the largest amount higher (more concerned) than Democrats: First, “The military and national defense”: 76% of Republicans, versus 61% of Democrats – a 15% difference – considered that issue to be important. Second, “Taxes”: 69% of Republicans, versus 56% of Democrats – a 13% difference. Third, “Terrorism”: 77% of Republicans, versus 68% of Democrats – a 9% difference. Fourth, “Government surveillance of U.S. citizens”: 45% of Republicans, versus 37% of Democrats – an 8% difference (but if the President had been a Republican, Democrats might have been more concerned about that issue than Republicans would have been).

Clearly, selfish fears swept concerns on the Republican side, whereas concerns for others (and especially the weak) swept concerns on the Democratic side.

One can therefore reasonably infer from this survey that the main difference between Democrats and Republicans is the difference between compassion versus psychopathy.

Vote for me.  I'll take care of your heart! (Google Image)

Vote for me. I’ll take care of your heart!
(Google Image)

Elections Matter.  Don’t vote for any psychopaths.  There seem to be more and more of them around the GOP.

 

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Filed under Campaigning, Elections, GOP, Humor, Politics, Voting

Freedom Industries! and why I ♥ Regulations

It’s the mantra that makes me want to grab the TV remote, smack the person who held it, and change the channel ASAP away from FOX News.

THERE’S TOO MUCH REGULATION!

Me?  I  Regulations.  I dote on them.  I support them.

I understand them and why they are there.  I even lecture about them (and not just here on Word Press – people actually pay me money to do so).*  Regulations, I always tell folks, are the IKEA instructions that accompany the bookcase.  They are the “how-tos.”

Laws are enacted in response to our understanding that a problem exists, and we need to change what we do as a country to prevent it from happening again.  At the same time, we hopefully have enough vision to see some of the related problems that might occur and try to prevent them from occurring.  A few examples:

Our current Food and Drug laws, the Food and Drug Act of 1936 and the Food and Drug Act Amendments (commonly known as the Kefauver-Harris Amendments).  The FDCA was first enacted after a manufacturer added antifreeze (without testing its effects on people, animals or using their brains very much at all) to a cough remedy to make it more palatable to the kiddies.  The then-current law didn’t actually say that they couldn’t add antifreeze.  Guess what happened!  105 people died.

Another disaster involving a drug that was tested and tried, thalidomide, was found to cause serious birth defects in the babies born to pregnant women.  It wasn’t ever approved in the US thanks to Dr. Frances Kelsey

Dr. Frances Kelsey.   (Photo from Wikipedia article you should have already linked to and read.)

Dr. Frances Kelsey.
(Photo from Wikipedia article you should have already linked to and read.  What are you waiting for?)

Laws designed to safeguard our waters and land came about mostly in the 1970s after two hundred years of treating our country’s land and water like a sewer.  Diseases were springing up in neighborhoods where chemical companies had dumped chemicals.

Love Canal, where Hooker Chemical buried 21,000 tons of toxic waste! (Google Image)

Love Canal, where Hooker Chemical buried 21,000 tons of toxic waste!
(Google Image)

Our rivers were polluted.  If you fell into the Potomac River when I first moved here in 1979, you had to get a typhoid shot.  The Cuyahoga River in Cleveland burned.

Cuyahoga River Burns (June 22, 1969) (Google Image)

Cuyahoga River Burns (June 22, 1969)
(Google Image)

And so our then-FUNCTIONAL Congress (made up of folks who understood why they were elected and who believed in compromise and who believed in the need for government) passed laws to protect us and our land and our water and our air.  Now, our hazardous materials and hazardous waste are to be carefully monitored under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act and the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act.  Under the Clean Water Act.  The Clean Air Act.  And a bunch of others designed to keep you and me safe and keep industry behaving itself.

But laws only say:

 We’re Gonna Fix This Problem

Regulations give us step by step instructions on

How to Fix This Problem

Regulations are very specific.  In order to comply, you must do A,B and C, according to specific instructions.  When regulations are promulgated the agency asks the regulated industry to comment on them, how to make them more manageable, workable, less expensive to follow.  But the regulations cover testing, manufacturing techniques, storage, monitoring, record-keeping, transportation, the works.  Regulations have the force of law.  If a company doesn’t follow them, they are liable for penalties and/or imprisonment.

Regulations

Regulations protect me.  They protect you.  They protect the United States of America from bad manufacturers.  They penalize the bad ones so that they don’t get away with messing up our planet.  They must be strong enough so that manufacturers fear them and therefore follow them.  Slaps on the wrist are ignored when there is money to be made by ignoring regulations. They must be strong.  (Because remember, there are idiots who would add antifreeze to cough syrup for a buck.)

Regulations are the rules that society agrees to adhere to often in spite of the fact that they are a serious pain in the ass.

Regulations, I say to those still awake in my lectures, are like the IKEA instructions.  The furniture is no good without them.  But they need to be followed.

Take this week’s Freedom Industries leak of 4-methylcyclohexanemethanol, or Crude MCHM, a heavy-duty chemical used in processing coal.  Current estimates are that this leak — from a facility brilliantly located upriver from a water purification plant — contaminated the drinking water of more than 100,000 residents of West Virginia.

Thirsty? (Photo from CNN)

Thirsty?
(Photo from CNN)

Freedom Industries has said don’t know when the spill started.  They don’t know how much spilled.  They don’t know whether the stuff that has made the entire area smell like licorice is, in fact, terribly toxic to people or if so, how toxic it is to human health.

They are supposed to know or they didn’t comply with the regulations.

They are supposed to measure the amount in the tanks.  Frequently.

They are supposed to record the amount they add or remove from the tanks.  Every single time they do this.

They are supposed to test.  Frequently.

They are supposed to monitor for leaks.  Frequently.

They are supposed to comply with the regulations.  It seems as if they did not.

They are supposed to make sure that they don’t fucking contaminate the fucking water for a hundred thousand people and possibly, probably more.

And if they didn’t they should go to jail.

I’m betting that they didn’t — that they didn’t follow the regulations.  Time will tell.

Freedom Industries  (Washington Post Image)

Freedom Industries
(Washington Post Image)

Just imagine what the rest of our country, our land, our rivers, our air, would be like if there were no regulations.  And you know, don’t you, that the Republican party is oh-so-determined to cut regulations.  To protect industry.  Not you.  Not me.  Industry.  Like Freedom Industries.

Do me a favor.  Think of Freedom Industries whenever you hear someone bitch about the loss of freedom from regulations.

Think of what we’d lose without regulation.

*   *   *

* From 1980-1989, I analyzed environmental regulations and drafted memos to folks on the steps they needed to comply with the regulations that are designed to keep our land, water and air cleaner.

For the past 10 years, I’ve examined a zillion company documents that show how they comply with their IKEA instructions.

*     *     *

Yeah, I know I said I wouldn’t be around much.  But sometimes I just can’t shut up.

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Filed under Climate Change, Conspicuous consumption, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Elections, GOP, Health and Medicine, History, Huh?, Humor, Hypocrisy, Law, Science, Stupidity, Technology, Voting