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September 2008
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November 2008

What if Global Warming was a bunch of hooey?

I have been deeply skeptical of the new religion called "Global Warming." Notice how instead of Global Warming, this new religion has morphed into "global climate change"? Now I am not denying that human activity especially unprincipled industrial activity has and can and will continue to have unless tightly regulated devastating effects on the environment. And by showing my skepticism for the New Religion I am not condoning flagrant and irresponsible use of the environment and our resources. I am no "Drill, Baby, Drill" Girl. I just don't like how the scientific community has been effectively silenced, that scientific dissent has been squashed. News flash idiots - science is always about testing, and dissenting. That's why its science and not religion. So when we get to a movement, that doesn't tolerate dissenting scientific opinion or study, then in my book, it ceases to become relevant. Here's an interesting article about how facts on the ground are simply not fitting into the neat "Global Warming" dogma.

On the Elections

My take on the 2 McCain books is: I really enjoyed "Citizen McCain." It gives an interesting insight into how Congress works. Most of the book (or the part that I read in any detail anyway) is about how McCain got the McCain-Feingold campaign reform legislation through. It was an amazing balancing act, and one of McCain's finest legacies. I am still trying to get into the other book - "The Myth of the Maverick." I don't believe that McCain's campaign was run well. Yes I do believe that the media has really been giving Obama a nice and easy ride. I also believe that Obama will win this election. I have decided to vote for Obama - in fact I finished my mail in ballot tonight. I believe that Obama will be a good president. While I think McCain appears stronger in foreign policy, I don't believe he has demonstrated in this campaign that he has the better temperament for the White House. His pick of Palin and the disastrous handling of his campaign around the Wall Street crisis sealed the deal for me. I think that it is a pity and a huge disappointment that McCain didn't run the campaign that he should have - a honest campaign geared at attracting centrists, independents and so called McCain democrats. Hard core Republicans are not going to go anywhere - they fear being left out in the cold, and they need to work with the candidate they got, not the other way around. However I think that the media needs to do a better job at holding Obama's feet to the fire. The media giddiness is simply inappropriate. I don't like to see one party whether it is Republican or Democratic holding overwhelming majorities in every level of government. We've seen what a complete disaster it has been with the Republican's in power. The same is true if the Dems get control of both houses. Never a good idea for democracy. For those hysterical at the thought of an Obama administration my advice is to chill. I don't believe we are going to see the end of days. Maybe, just maybe we will finally get an Administration that we the people are craving... leadership that is not afraid to listen to other points of view, and new way of doing things. We shall see how things turn out.

On Troopergate

Its a cold Sunday evening, and I am reading the Troopergate report.

To read it in its entirety go here (it makes for some riveting reading.)

The report finds that Gov Palin did abuse her position in attempting to get Trooper Wooten fired. The report highlights the Palin's repeated efforts to get the investigation into Trooper Wooten (the investigation that was investigated and finalized under the previous administration) reopened. The report talks about the Palin's frustration with the fact that Wooten simply received a "slap on the wrist" and that "people" were "protecting him." When it was explained to Todd that the matter was over, and there was no reasonable grounds to open it up again, without exposing the Palin's, other individuals and the State to possible litigation, Todd Palin continued to make a fuss about other issues - the infamous moose hunting, the alleged use of a snowmobile while on a workers' compensation case, and using his vehicle to drop off his children at school. With each incident the complaints were dismissed. Most telling with the moose incident was that if the state were to press charges other people such as the Governor's sister, and her father would also be implicated. On the Workers' compensation issue, that Wooten had received medical clearance to snow mobile, and finally the issue of using a state patrol car to drop off his children he had received his supervisors permission to do so.

What I find astonishing is the role of Todd Palin. It is apparently quite okay for Todd Palin, the so called First Gentleman to use the Governor's office as his own, and to seemingly be very involved in the day to day running of the Governor's office. Simply astonishing.

The Second finding of the report is that the Commissioner's refusal to reopen the investigation to get Trooper Wooten fired, was not the sole reason that the Commissioner was fired but was a "contributing factor." Hypothetically what if Commissioner Monegan had done what he was being told to do and fired Wooten? Would he still have his job today despite his other "problems"?

Well I guess we will never know... but I am deeply skeptical.

What I find so astonishing is that the ethics Palin has demonstrated are the very "cancer" that McCain is against. Ethics in Government is the foundation behind the McCain - Feingold Reforms. Oh McCain! What were you thinking!?

On McCain...

As promised, Kevin and I are diligently reading up on McCain.

I have 2 books that I am currently reading, reviews pending.

1. Citizen McCain
2. The Myth of the Maverick.

Over at Moderate Voice is an interesting blog on how McCain could win (*gasp*)

Here's how (according to Moderate Voice):

John McCain has roughly three weeks to turn his campaign around. If he can clearly articulate concerns about one-party government and the combination of over-extended federal involvement in over-reaching social policies, and find a more widely-appealing running-mate (preferably one with some gravitas this time), I think he’d have a real chance at the presidency.

IPod iTouch

I recently bought the iPod iTouch 8GB. My local Apple Store had a program where you could bring in your old iPod (I had one of the older version Nano) and they would give you 10% discount on your new purchase.

One of the coolest features on the iTouch is the Apple Apps. Amazing Apps - business, finance, fitness and my absolute fav - games.

1. Labyrinth Lite Edition
This was the first app I downloaded - it is free. It consists of 10 different levels, and is a very cool "pin ball" with a cool (and ultra sensitive) tilt mechanism. Easy to use, and addictive. Score: free, easy, good graphics, but simple. ***

2. Wikipanion
You need to make sure you have your WiFi access for this one. I haven't had much time to review this. So review pending. (o did I mention that it is free?)

3. Space Monkey (free)
Simple touch screen technology makes the space monkey spin and grab space junk, and avoid the nasty batteries. Not bad, also easy to use. Graphics are cute, but average. ***

4. Sudoku Lite (free version)
Easy to use, clear simple graphics. Also ***

5. Shanghai Free
Took a while to "get" what this is about. Nice graphics, although some times the pieces are too small to see. Again ***

6. Facebook App - Review pending

7. Chimps Ahoy
There is a Chimps Ahoy Lite (the free version) and Chimps Ahoy (pay $2.99) Trouble is I can't remember which one I got. I think I may have paid the $2.99. This is ultra cute, cool use of touch screen technology. Ultra addictive. Score: ****

8. Toy Bot Diaries
There is a free version or you can pay $3.99. I spent the bucks. There are some downsides - it gets annoying that there are "loading" breaks between the different actions. I have only managed to get to the 2nd level. The controls take a little getting used to, but once you are familiar with them this really is an amazing use of iTouch technology. To move the Bot tilt the iPod. Touch metal objects to hoist the bot and tap for free fall. Bot also can have his boots magnetised - handy if you want to carry some spare change. I am still a little mystified at some of the functions - what is the function of "memory" and "chapters"? Still a little bit in the dark. Score - very cool, instructions/ how to would be helpful. ****

9. Flick Bowling
This is quite fun for 99 cents.

I am a very bad bowler in real life. And I am about the same with this app. But it is fun, and I don't have to worry about ultra heavy bowls, or smelly shoes.
Score ***

10. Motor Chaser
I bought this one also for 99 cents. I am a disaster with motor race games. I was convinced to buy by some interesting reviews and I also wanted to see the technology in action. Very cool

11. Mouse About.
Buy for $2.99. I've just started with this. Very cute. Mouse has a huge appetite, and you have to watch out for the cat. SCore ***

12. Gaia
Cost: $2.99. Also a free version
Review Pending

Other app I am still test driving is the Edibles - Health and Lifestyle app - supposed to be a calory/ carb/ point counter for stuff you eat, and whether you exercise. I also picked up a pay for version of Sudoku called Amazing Sudoku. Graphics are super super cool. Haven't done a run yet. Review to come.

Debate #2

Kevin and I TiVo'd this debate like the others. I thought that McCain did better at this debate than in the first debate (which was dreadful.) Unlike most of the bloggersphere I think that McCain did better than what they think. Both candidates often avoided the questions - that really annoys me. But I thought McCain did a good job at answering the questions without sounding deranged (and completely ancient.) He was strongest on foreign policy, and on his voting record. Weakest on the economy - I mean why must we renegotiate the principle on mortgages? Isn't that socialism? Supply and demand will determine the cost/ value of a home. Where people need help from govt is renegotiating the terms of the repayment not the amount of the loan. (Why should taxpayers essentially "buy" down market values simply because people paid too much for their homes?) I also don't like his health care plan - really awful.

I also think, again contrary to most of the pundits, that Obama actually came out weaker in this debate than Debate #1. Debate is not his strong point. He is much more comfortable with speeches and lecturing - the comfortable "professor" approach. Again - as I pointed out after the DNC - I get the overarching themes of an Obama Administration - but please give me specifics. I thought he did good on Health care.

Both he and McCain were merely average on the economic woes.

So I went into Debate #2 leaning in favor of Obama. If I was deciding my vote solely on Debate #2 I would be undecided, and be seriously giving McCain a second look. (I know - gasp, shock horror, gasp, gasp.) But I want more from Obama - give me details. Here's what I would like to see in Debate #3- Obama - strong, calm with respect to foreign policy. Don't be afraid of sticking up for USA interests. USA foreign policy should not be governed by a delusional popularity contest, but about putting USA interests first. (Everyone else does that so why not the USA?) I think Obama would also win kudo's from me if he could balance out the optimistic dreamer side with some reality. Is govt the solution to every aspect of our financial woes? Realistic answer - no. We are going to have to feel some more pain people before things come right.

Bottom line: McCain is not out of the race yet. Don't count him out. (Now if he could get rid of that awful Palin woman he would be a serious candidate.)

My ballot has arrived - I have signed up for the mail in ballot mainly because of the convenience, and also because I am quite suspicious of our auto correction devices (electronic voting machines.)

Can't wait for the next debate. Bring it on.

VP Debate

The one and only VP debate is over. I was dreading watching Sarah Palin - she has been quite cringe inducing. But I was pleasantly surprised. I thought she did good. Did she do enough to make me change my mind? No.
Joe Biden did well too - he managed to control himself, he came across as authoritative, experienced and rational. And no, he did not come across as patronizing. Palin did her folksy thing - which I think while charming can be annoying when overdone. I liked that Biden mentioned Kosovo and Darfur. I think he came across as strong on foreign policy. Actually I found the Veep debate more entertaining and interesting than the Obama/ McCain debate last week. Interesting.
I also think Biden did well on criticising McCain's voting record, and correcting Palin on some of her assertions. Of course the blogs will pick it apart, and make sure that he was accurate on some of his accusations. (Right now I am simply taking the debate on face value.)

I liked Biden's answer about when he had to change his view concerning supreme court justice picks. I found Palin's winking (she did it a few times) annoying. Once charming and sweet, twice - not. I got quite choked up listening to Biden talk about the loss of his wife and tragedy to his family. It made him seem more approachable.

Despite the flap over the moderator, I liked her. I thought she kept the debate moving along nicely, and didn't seem to want to share the spot light like some moderators we've seen.