The Sign Says So…

abbott - 1

Going through some of my old photos, I found this picture of a sign that I took outside of Harrison’s Pharmacy in Manly, NSW.

Some things have changed in the nearly 4 years since taking this photo…

I think I took the picture because it was funny to see a plaque saying that a common pharmacy was opened by a government official…

Go out there and vote, y’all!

Well, that is if you haven’t already voted early. 😉

I’ve been busy the last couple of days with working on things around the house, plus organizing some new things in my life…including becoming very stiff from an exercise bike…I kinda feel like I broke myself, but I think that’s just my body actually adjusting to new movements that I haven’t done in ages. 😉

Anyway, today’s the day we’ve all been waiting for – especially those of us who have gotten a bit of election fatigue coming into the stretch run of the process – and I think it’s fair to say that even if you’ve been involved in political news, etc., that come Wednesday morning (assuming that there’s a result), there will be a lot of vacations in the TV news world 😉

The only thing that you need to remember is that this is the day to go out and vote – vote for the candidate of your choosing. Don’t just vote for them because they’re with this party or that party – vote for them because you’ve looked at how you view issues, and how the candidates view the issues. Go with the one who you are closer to on the issues.

And, to be honest, if you are those voting for a candidate simply because of the party they are in, you might want to seriously rethink how you go about making your election decisions.

My Friends, I would like to propose a wager.

Yes, my friends, there is a somewhat major speech tonight, involving the man who has been nominated the Republican nominee to the Presidential ticket, John McCain. If you know anything about him, you do know one thing.

You probably know it because, my friends, it is the story that got him noticed when he was an up-and-coming politician playing with his second wife’s family’s money on his way to Washington.

That story is his time spent in Viet Nam – facing torture, and even making the conscious decision to stay there even after given the choice to leave. Personally, I think any sane person would make the decision to take leave, but that is just my opinion.

However, ever since he found success with that story, he has used it at any chance he can. My friends, I must say that this is troubling. At first I thought anyone detracting from the use was being somehow disrespectful, but after you’ve heard him give the speech about it once, you’ve heard it 300 times. I won’t even go into the major mental roadblock that supporting torture is after having been subjected to it himself.

Anyway, my friends, here is the wager – actually, two of them. 🙂

First – How many times will John McCain mention that he was a Prisoner of War in Viet Nam? Personally, I think it will be 4.

Second – How many times will John McCain say the words "my friends" in the course of his speech? I would wager on 2.

Leave your responses in the comments, and then we can compare notes after the speech tonight. 🙂

Experience Isn’t An Issue Anymore.

For all the complaining that Republicans have done about the seeming lack of experience that Barack Obama has, and that he’s not qualified for being President, it’s all for no good.


Sarah Palin. There’s no word if she’s related by marriage to Monty Python’s Michael Palin, but she must be a comedian (I’ll get to that later).

The favourite complaint of Republicans about Obama is that he hasn’t had any "experience" in doing things important to being President – has John McCain? For that matter, has anyone who has ever run for President? I think the job of President is more of a job that makes the man rather than the man that makes the job – as in, despite people saying there is no "on-the-job" training, the fact is that there is nothing that can train you for the unique challenges that the position of most powerful person in the world has to face.

Sure there are good points about this seeming inexperience, such as the challenge to name an accomplishment, but you could say that about a lot of Presidential candidates and Presidents before they came into office.

However, the argument is seriously been stifled thanks to picking Governor Palin of Alaska. Sure she’s been in the office more than a year, and she’s been the mayor of a town where their powers and duties are exactly ten, but how does that prepare you to be President?

Anyway, they say that selection of a Vice Presidential candidate is a test of the candidate’s character. To select a woman – great move if it weren’t for the fact that this is coming off of a big fit over the non-selection of Hillary Clinton for Vice-President under Obama. I think that it’s a move meant to pander to women (a point that Snoskred has a great parody of here – Wimmins Will Vote for Wimmins, KTHXBAI) – it might solidify some Republican women, but I think that to expect a massive shifting of Democratic women to vote for McCain based on Governor Palin is quite a major stretch.

The other thing that is troubling about this decision is that I question the decisions that Sarah and her husband have made in regards to the names of their children. The only logical explanation I can come up with is that she did this as an evil joke on her children, to make them the immediate butt of jokes in any conversation. What are those names, may you ask?

  • Track, that thing that athletes run on in athletics, or the place automobiles go to race or fine tune.
  • Bristol, most notably a city in the South West of England, also a city straddling the Tennessee-Virginia State border, home to Bristol Motor Speedway – the largest sports stadium (in terms of seating) in the state.
  • Willow, a tree (weeping willow – if that kid cried in school…well the jokes could write themselves 😉 )
  • Piper, a few notables on that name, but the most notable is the Piper Cub aircraft.
  • Trig, short for trigonometry, a notoriously complex maths subject (though I didn’t do too bad in it or Calculus kthxbai!).

One last thing to think about with this discussion of judgement – the event was held at the Nutter Center. Need I say more? 😉

And then there is also this piece from a blog at UPenn – Palin, Obama and the Experience Issue. The key is that it takes a look at the different variations on "Experience" there are.

It’s only a theory, but it might be doable…

Snoskred and I have been discussing politics lately (sometimes the discussions have been quite testy, but I’m coming around quickly), and tonight we had a discussion about the political conventions and why people go to them or watch them. We figured out that the real reason people go to the conventions isn’t the politicians, or the crappy bands.

It’s all about the swag, or "Stuff We Ain’t Getting." 😉

Yep, forget the speeches, the bad covers of songs, and the symbolism of anything a convention is, it’s all about getting random junk like a sign proclaiming your candidate as the one, and even some random other junk like a t-shirt.

So, the conversation goes to the Republican convention, which is in St. Paul, MN. The question is whether it’s far or not – and it isn’t. In fact, it’s a drive that is doable and back in the space of a single day – a proven fact from a few trips there and back when I went to school at the University up there.

My first thought, though was nah, this isn’t going to work, but then I started playing with the idea, it didn’t sound too far fetched (other than explaining why I was wanting to suddenly spend money to go to Minnesota). In fact, I even started looking at how you could attend the convention, even for one day – sign up as a volunteer.

Heck, I even figured that, at current gas prices, I’d need around $90 to do the trip (figuring 600 miles at 25 miles per gallon, and gas at $3.75 per gallon – or about 99¢/L, but apparently you can get it for as low as $3.40 in the Twin Cities), and I’d be able to save money by putting my life on the line by sleeping at a rest area.

I did some searches for hotels and found the lowest rate was $50 per night, plus tax – that was at the Motel 6 near the Mall of America.

I’ve been meaning to get back to the Twin Cities one of these days. What do you think? Should I take a complete flyer and see if I could sign up as a volunteer for a day up there?

Just quietly, I’m thinking not, but it’d be fun if I could. 😉

Either that, or I’ll stick to volunteering locally, which hopefully they’ll have something for me to do this week since I’m finally available as I don’t have to work on Friday this week…