Thursday, January 26, 2012

live blogging the ninetieth republican debate

20:08 more live blogging. I'm done with debates.

19:59 Romney just smacked down Newt about promising everything to all states...

19:58 what is all this anti-chinese jingoism? It's ridiculous...

19:50 the all important future of NASA question--Romney, I'll get scientists and commerce to sing kumbaya. Newt: he just said NASA is mis-managed--in Florida. Wow...offer prizes to get an American on the moon. (no, really, he said that).

19:35 I wish I had enough money to "blind trust" let someone else invest and then get paid! Also...Newt just got his arse handed to him.

19:22 Newt, "No one should be trapped in a linguistic trap." Romney calls PACs "the people" They are SO far in the weeds about immigration without saying anything different at all...

19:21 Romney keeps confusing "legal immigrants" with Americans. The irony is strong, but I doubt his audience gets it--illegal immigrants DON'T TAKE AMERICAN JOBS

19:20 Mitt won this round without saying anything, really...

19:17 Newt, after running ads in Spanish, calls for English as the official language.

19:15 Romney--guest worker cards and e-system that employers can check. Just curious what's to keep people from asking me for my guest worker card. Think it won't happen? People used to ask my dad how much he charged for lawn care, five years after we moved into our house.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

live blogging the SOTU

20:39 this speech is vapid, but at least not offensive (unless you consider lack of substance offensive)

20:36 give citizenship for service in the military--but you can't get a secret clearance, so you can't use the computers can't really get promoted...seems a little "rock and a hard place"

20:32 Al Franken!!

20:30 Some of these things are just cheer lines...I don't know why I'm watching. (My husband just called my blogging "my work" :) I love this kid!)

20:27 the Joint Chiefs look REALLY bored...and where are the zoomies and Marines?

20:24 minimum tax on all corporations to support American companies? That's interesting...

20:20 it's all past so far...republicans are confused if they should clap for GM or not

20:12 starts of with a pander to the troops. No one can be against troops, right?

20:11 There should be a "no ovation" rule...either that or the opposite, more "you lie!" guys--I mean, at least TRY to be genuine.

20:08 Chief Justice Roberts greeted him with what appeared to be a rather warm and genuine smile...Ginsberg doesn't look well :(

20:06 Was that Dick Cheney?!

20:05 This whole thing has got to be the most ridiculous thing we do as a country. It doesn't drive policy, it's purely political. There are so many norms and traditions that are, what...a decade? old, why bother? It makes us all look petty and rather silly.

19:58 First lady's "guests" I hate that...people-props

19:57 Alito, Thomas and Scalia all skipped the SOTU...and Sotamayor--is this going to be her norm?

Saturday, January 21, 2012

live blogging today...

I'm watching TV and cleaning, but didn't want to update my status 13809473 times, so instead, I'll "live blog" twitter...with no character limits.

19:11 headed to dinner, but a last thought, in reaction to this from Eric Ericson ( 
Basically, today’s vote is about Republican grassroots giving the Washington Republican establishment the finger. The base is angry, and right now, only Newt is left to fight for them, as imperfect as he is. We may still end up with Romney, but voters aren’t going to let him have it easily.
seriously? to fight the establishment nominate the guy who was speaker of the house when the current form of "conservative" took over the Republican party??

19:06 Fox News...I think they are subscibed to some "black conservatives" website...because they always have them on TV to comment...but then they show the Republican rallies and there are none there...

19:03 When Mitt Romney says that there's an assault on "free enterprise" what he doesn't get is that there's NOT an assault on free enterprise, there's an assault on crony capitalism and people who blithely game the system. There are things you CAN do and things you SHOULD do. Mitt Romney got filthy rich on (well, on his parents money...but) on doing things that one CAN do (with money to begin with) but shouldn't because it's unethical if not immoral and illegal.

18:58 Will Mitt Romney be the best "front runner" to never break 50%?

18:42 LOL! From Andrew SullivanExit poll crack: the under-30s went for Ron Paul again, even in the South. Paul beat Romney among the under 44s. Only the seniors seemed immune to the 76 year-old. 

18:18 Anderson Cooper just showed us The Cube where the "analysts" sit. They're all rather young, in makeup and have nice hair...nice!

18:16 The good news tonight, and this election, is that with Newt and Paul, there is proof and hope that super PAC's might be over. They'll still have money, and still put up a billion ads...but messaging, personality, debates and interviews will possibly be what people focus on. It's possible super PACs, for a short while, will simply spend themselves into futility...enough ads and people stop listening. They'll realize that eventually and use their money in less obvious ways (astro-turfing and others) but in the next election or two, they'll just throw money down the hole that is TV.

18:11 Lexington, S.C. CNN is bragging about how they have the "most people on the ground" in SC. Now I see why. Clearly they have an intern who they called last night. He's in an ill fitting suit, hasn't shaved, didn't get makeup so he looks like a lobster with a blush and stutters. There's nothing wrong with any of those, but I assume the only way someone so non-television ready got on television was because they were going for numbers and not perfection.

18:09 just heard someone say she "can't wait to see Newt debate Obama." I imagine the people who like how Newt debates are people who care not for the substance but only the style. But can you imagine a Newt/Obama debate?? That hatred that burns in his eyes when he thinks someone isn't smarter than him, being directed at Obama who, like him or hate him, always comes off as cool, calm and's going to be HORRIBLE in terms of imaging...and AWESOME in terms of democrat awesomeness...

18:07 40% of South Carolinians think Newt Gingrich is better poised to beat Obama than Romney. Who are these people and what have they been thinking for the last...oh...15 years?

18:04 I just heard Ari Fleischer say that Newt deserved "props" for his performance. While I agree...remember when giving someone "props" was hip/urban slang? Now it's being used on the national news by "respectable" people...

17:15 I just remembered I forgot to buy bread for sandwiches :/ SO! I adapted and overcame! I made sandwich tacos! Tortilla with lunch meat, mustard, pepper, tomato, cheese and red onion...oh, and a glass of wine!

14:15 brief mention of coordinated attacks in Nigeria including car bombs, gunfire and other...this doesn't bode well...

13:44 Head of the Evangelical vote says that "nobody knows what goes on inside a marriage" so it's unfair to discuss Newt Gingrich's marriage and that the media is bias by talking about it while ignoring Edwards or Clinton. Then, he says that he understands there's a different standard because Republicans bring moral into the question themselves. I don't remember Edwards or Clinton being ignored, but if he understands why there's a difference then how does he still see it as bias? The media isn't bias--the media is simply judging candidates by the standards they set for themselves--democrats don't care what you do or don't do in the bedroom.

13:43 re. Jon Henserling, I happened to stumble upon this article saying that we're on track to BEAT, not meet, Obama's desire to double exports by 2015. Moving on to cleaning now...

13:34 switched to CNN for some liberal bias. I'm watching two editors of The Wall Street Journal talk about Obama waging class warfare. Damn liberal media.

12:36 I swear...if I hear someone else say something about Obama "wanting" people to be on the govt dole or "wanting" people to be on food stamps. That's just a ridiculous thing to say...and yet, it's said at least four times this morning alone.

12:17 In an effort to seem more exciting and that he has "momentum" Mitt Romney's team has been busing in out of state Mormon college aged youth...ha!

12:11 Jon Henserling, "Obama's policies haven't just failed to make things better, they have actually made it worse." By what metric??

12:10 clearly I'm watching fox. GOV Mark Sanford on to talk about the candidates. I wonder why they didn't ask him about Newt's infidelity? Also...I think he just tried to quietly re-enter the lime-light.

12:04 Gingrich says that he thinks it's a good think for Republicans to stretch out the primary...I assume he's remembering the Democratic primary four years ago. The difference, however, is that the longer the primary lasted back then, the MORE excitement democrats and independents had for Obama AND Hillary. It was a decision time between two candidates we all liked and just needed to choose which we liked MORE. We were excited to have to choose between two people we saw as awesome. On the other hand, the longer this primary lasts, the more ridiculous they all look. The more debates, the more commercials, the more interviews, the LESS electable the republicans make themselves.

11:55--There is a LOT of talk on Fox about if it was fair to ask Gingrich about his affair. It's really interesting right now to hear how people discuss the issue. So far, I've heard someone say that if it was fair to ask about Bill Ayers and Obama's Pastor, then this is fair; that Gingrich isn't accessible to the press and that's 'not fair'; that Gingrich shouldn't attack the press--unless they're being biased for Obama; and, finally, that the press is biased toward Romney.  This election is, if nothing else, a real moment of introspection on behalf of the Republican party. Who you support as a Republican (Romney, Gingrich, Paul or Santorum) says a lot about which particular part of the party you support. The fusion of religious, social, fiscal and libertarian conservatism may soon end.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

live blogging the republican circus...

21:42...guess thats it...

21:32 Huntsman: "What [Romney] is saying is easy applause and a soundbite" but it hurts Americans.

21:31 Romney: "We want to replace regulations which kill with those that help!" so...the difference between republicans and democrats isn't the size of govt, but the efficacy of it? WTF...what republican party is this!?

21:28 Santorum: "I don't believe in middle 'class'"

21:28 Newt: Obama trying to establish a radical socialist european model

21:21Perry: There is a vision, "get america working again". Um...yes. Also, we'll win this game by "putting points on the board."

21:12 creating more jobs "How committed would you be to infrastructure building?"
Romney: bridges, roads, rail and air is necessary but fundamentally, govt gets in the way of creating jobs...entrepreneurship...europe...president wants us to be European..."I believe in an America that believes in freedom..."
Gingrich: You cannot compete with China if you have an inferior infrastructure--technologically smart and progressive--I would have an energy program to get us free from Saudi and Venezuela (what it is I won't say...but it's there!)
Huntsman: Earn our way forward--I would have followed Simpson-Bowles
Santorum: I would NOT have followed Simpson-Bowles...0% tax on manufactures and processors
Romney: "It would be great not to have taxes, but we have to have them" finally someone being smart
"we're only inches away from not being free" nevermind--apparently tax rates being the lowest since, what, the sixties, means we're close to socialism

21:05 I suddenly noticed the American flag pins! woohoo!! AMER'CA! Why don't Sawyer and Stephanolous have em? commies!

21:03 Ron Paul: ping pong?..."sanctions always lead to war."

21:01 Newt: develop a policy to replace the Iranian dictatorship.

Let's just invade!

21:00 Perry: I would sent troops back to Iraq.

Ha! LOL...seriously...we'd re-invade because, if he doesn't know, the Sovereign government of Iraq that WE set up doesn't want us we'd have to invade a country we made to send them back in.

20:59 Santorum: "[the President] makes the decision, not the Generals..." how often have the republicans said the President doesn't listen to the he's not acting independently enough?

20:58 Santorum: "We are the weak horse...they did it by withdrawing from Iraq..."

Bush withdrew us...remember the SOFA??

20:58 Newt Gingrich: I (again) think we're asking the wrong questions.

I like this tactic...always suggest a different question I have a better answer for...

20:56 Mitt Romney: I'll bring the troops home as soon as I can, not any later.

Great answer!

20:24 Drinking wine after Peter's Birthday dinner and watching the debate!

Friday, January 06, 2012

900 and the "Gay Lifestyle"

There are two things I would like to convey. One is a post and one is an announcement:
1. My last post was number 900 on blogger! Wow...who knew?

2. The actual post relating to the title of this post "The Gay Lifestyle"-
There is a theory called, "Queer Theory" that you can google, but which I am not discussing here. What I would like to discuss is the idea that Santorum has that there is some homogeneous "gay lifestyle" that is assaulting (or can be assaulted) "normal" life--ie. HIS life.

There is not. There are as many gay lifestyles as there are gays. Add to that Lesbian lifestyles, bi lifestyles, trans lifestyles, hetero lifestyles and you catch my drift--it's as ridiculous to call something a "gay lifestyle" as it is to call something a "straight lifestyle".  Why? Because I have straight friends who are in their fifties, not married and living on a boat and I have straight friends who are married and in an open relationship and I have straight friends who are single and living in apartments trying to eek out a living and straight friends who are married with several kids living in Utah in houses larger than I can even fathom right now. 

Everyone chooses for him or herself what lifestyle they want.

So, what's the "gay lifestyle" that Peter and I choose?

Well, right now, he works (a lot), takes care of our fish, Gus, and will soon be picking up our dog, Buddy, from his mom's house in Vermont. The odds are he'll stop at his Aunt's house to say hello to her and his uncle and wish her well on her breast cancer recovery and may or may not swing by his sister's college to grab a slice of pizza. He'll pack up soon and move here to Kansas to be with me and our other dog, Bear.

Once he's here, we'll sort through our things with my Mom, who lives with us, and we'll figure out where we're headed next; one big gay-lifestyle family--a mother-in-law, two sons, two dogs and a fish named Gus.

In our spare time, we cook together (mom's teaching us to make salsa and I'm teaching Peter the finer art of cooking outside a crock pot), work on art projects (Peter draws well) and quilt--yes--quilt.

There you have it. Our radical assault on America.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Ron Paul's and the gays...

Amongst many of my gay friends (lesbians, not so much), there is a push to argue that Ron Paul is “gay friendly.”
I believe this is for two reasons: 1. There are a lot of conservative (economically) gay men who are looking for someone to champion who doesn’t carry the socially conservative anti-gay baggage for whom Ron Paul seems a natural choice. 2. There is an unstated assumption that if someone is not actively anti-gay (a la Santorum), then s/he is “pro-gay”. 
The second is the issue I would like to address here.
Ron Paul is not “pro-gay”. Ron Paul is a Federalist (I wouldn’t even call him a Libertarian for reasons better explained here). What this means is that Ron Paul is against Federal legislation that infringes upon personal liberties--including the liberty to define marriage as one sees fit.
However, and it is a big however, he not only believes states should be allowed to decide for themselves what marriage is without having to recognize the marriages legally entered into in other states (which, an argument can be made, violates the tenth section of article 1 of the Constitution—but that’s another discussion).  He supports (ironically) the Federal Defense of Marriage Act at the Federal level which specifically grants states the right to refuse to recognize my marriage in Iowa, and prohibits the Federal Government from recognizing it as well.
An argument could be made that the Federal Government has no right to recognize marriage at all—that would be strict libertarianism. However, Ron Paul does not make that argument. He instead explicitly endorses States which deny recognition of marriage equality and a law which prohibits the federal government from recognizing it. This seems the opposite of Federalism which would have the federal government recognize any state issues marriage contract.
Dr. Paul has written regarding anti-sodomy laws,This is why I say that Dr. Paul is a Federalist, and not a libertarian. While his buzzword is “liberty” his belief in ultimate liberty seems to end at the State. He is not someone who believes in the ultimate liberty of the individual to decide for himself—at least in anything non-economic.   I cannot see how it is somehow “pro-gay” to say that while the Federal Government may not infringe upon my rights, the State government can, and should, do so.
...there clearly is no right to privacy nor sodomy found anywhere in the Constitution. There are, however, states’ rights — rights plainly affirmed in the Ninth and Tenth amendments. Under those amendments, the State of Texas has the right to decide for itself how to regulate social matters like sex, using its own local standards. But rather than applying the real Constitution and declining jurisdiction over a properly state matter, the Court decided to apply the imaginary Constitution and impose its vision on the people of Texas.

He argues, often, that we should not consider ourselves as part of “groups” but instead as individuals. Using the example of his treatment of Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell, he wrote, That argument, it seems to me, is solely academic. He points to a law that is discriminatory in nature against a group of people (LGBT) but then says that it’s not about a group it’s about individuals. This may make sense academically, but in practical terms, it does not. Moreover, recently, Dr. Paul said that Rick Santorum was “[Santorum] very confused …” in regards to saying the Constitutional right to privacy doesn’t exist in regards to birth control and Griswold v. Connecticut. Dr. Paul goes on to say, Holding these two positions simultaneously seems contradictory to me—there IS a right to privacy that protects a person’s right to have consensual sex with contraception, but NOT a right to privacy that protects a person’s right to have non-vaginal consensual sex. If the SCOTUS decided Griswold correctly, which they did, then they also decided Lawrence correctly. They are the same argument—Lawrence holds that, By claiming that it is about individual liberties and not about groups, but simultaneously saying that Griswold is correct and Lawrence is incorrect, Dr. Paul tips his hand—he supports a state law which discriminates against a group (only homosexual sodomy was banned thus affecting only that group) but is against one which affects individuals (contraception between hetero or homosexuals under Griswold, however redundant homosexual contraception might be).
I think ['Don't Ask, Don't Tell'] is a decent policy... [If] there is homosexual behavior in the military that is disruptive, it should be dealt with. But if there's heterosexual sexual behavior that is disruptive, it should be dealt with. So it isn't the issue of homosexuality. It's the concept and the understanding of individual rights. If we understood that, we would not be dealing with this very important problem.
If property rights and individual liberty and the Fourth Amendment [do not] protect privacy, what does the Fourth Amendment do?
...under the Equal Protection Clause, moral disapproval is a legitimate state interest to justify by itself a statute that bans homosexual sodomy, but not heterosexual sodomy. It is not. Moral disapproval of this group, like a bare desire to harm the group, is an interest that is insufficient to satisfy rational basis review under the Equal Protection Clause.
When it comes down to it, Dr. Paul is not “friendly” to gays. At best, he is “un-friendly” to federal laws that are, by nature, discriminatory, but he is against them not because they are discriminatory, but because they infringe upon the state’s right to conduct the discrimination.  By allowing ourselves to be duped into thinking that Dr. Paul’s talk of “liberty” means that we should be free to do as we please, we neglect to see past the rhetoric. If implemented fully, Dr. Paul’s vision of liberty would severely restrict the personal liberties and freedoms enjoyed only by a group—LGBT individuals—in the name of the liberty of the state. The best consolation prize we are offered is the knowledge that what we’ve lost as a group, we re-gain in “states rights”.
Foot note:
  1. Before anyone brings it up, I do know that Dr. Paul voted, ultimately, to end DADT. While I give him credit for not voting against it, I still do not consider this move as “friendly”. Recognizing that the law would be repealed and joining in at the last minute in order to shore up libertarian bona-fides is not “friendly”, it is simply politics. Even he is not above that.
  2. I personally am glad that Ron Paul has the visibility he currently does. I think he has a lot of good positions, and will do the Republican party a lot of good in regaining relevancy and changing the debate in both parties. This does not mean, however, that I agree with all of his positions.  He is someone for whom I, thankfully, must evaluate position by position.  It would do all of us well to do so with all politicians and Ron Paul's entry in this debate in a meaningful way forces us to do so.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Bachmann is out!

This isn't an official prediction, but more a thought-exercise on "what if"--

What if her supporters split between Newt and Santorum just because non of the 75% of voters who voted for "not Romney" like him any more. That ups their numbers by 2.5% each.

Newt HATES Romney now, thanks to Iowa. There are two debates in New Hampshire where Huntsman actually campaigned. For the "we want a sane President", this adds one more option for non-Romney fans to turn to. Imagine if Romney and Huntsman come out close with Santorum and Gingrich coming in the top four as well.

Perry will campaign in SC, but will lose. His supporters? They're looking for far-right, religious zeal that Gingrich and Santorum provide but Huntsman and Romney do not. They'll support the former when Perry inevitably drops out.

Then there's super-Tuesday--maybe that's when the sane Republicans who do NOT like Romney (because no one does) will support Huntsman (maybe?)...

I'm just imagining ways in which Romney loses the un-losable election.