Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Halloween scary stuff!

It's Halloween! Time for some scary stuff! :eyepopping:

For liberals: 4 more years of Dubya!

For conservatives: Speaker Pelosi!

For non-Cowboy fans: World Champion Dallas Cowboys!

For the ladies: "Hey, baby, what's your sign?"

For the men: "Does this dress make me look fat?"

I'll post some more later when I think of some, or if I get more from others.

Happy Halloween!


UPDATE: One person e-mailed me to say "Your Internet going out".

Now THAT'S scary! Yaaaaaa!!

And PETA's pretty scary because they're so dumb! More on PETA tomorrow, actually. Right now, just enjoy your Halloween! :-)

Monday, October 30, 2006

Why I'd rather live in Texas: Part 1

I got an idea to make an occassional "Why I'd rather live in Texas" blog entry just so that the poor, unfortunate non-Texans can see what they're missing. In fact, I already have an idea for an inaugural post!

In this story, we see that New York subway system is going to allow transgendered people (usually known as "cross-dressers") to use bathrooms designated for the opposite gender.

Well, the opposite gender of the body that they happen to be born into, that is. The man in the article feels that he is "a woman trapped in a man's body" - so therefore, by going to the ladies' bathroom, he's only going to the bathroom that coincides with the gender that he feels himself to be.

The way the judges see it, they are only helping the transgendered community to feel more welcome in the community at large, but what about the women who are going to be very uncomfortable with men coming into their bathrooms? Don't their feelings count? Shouldn't the input of women have been sought out first before this court decision was handed down? This decision is going to affect how women conduct themselves in public, and it was forced down their throat.

I thought that the advent of feminism was supposed to put a stop to this sort of legal heavy-handedness at the expense of women, but apparently not. The way I see it, one small group of people is being made to feel less comfortable at the expense of the comfort of a whole lot of other people.

And one woman in the story voiced the very thought that popped in my head; namely that heterosexual male sexual predators can now dress as women and lurk in women's bathrooms by calling themselves "transgendered". So right there, you see how this law can be exploited to the benefit of sexual predators. We should be making things harder for sexual predators, not easier.

And last, this idea of letting transgendered folks use the bathrooms "suited to their inner gender" only invites more lawsuits down the road. Women are going to sue. That's not a prediction, that's a fact. And I don't blame them one bit.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Texas Governor's race down to the home stretch

Okay folks, we're down to a little more than a week before the elections. Time to get down with the commentary.

Based on the most recent poll that I remember seeing, Governor Rick "Goodhair" Perry was still in the lead, while Chris "Who?" Bell took second place. Meanwhile, the two independents, Carole "Grandma" Strayhorn and Kinky "Kinky" Friedman, have pretty much stayed right where they are.

I still don't know who I'll vote for. Basically, it's down to two though, because I won't be voting for Bell (because of his views) or Friedman (because I'm not certain of his ability to govern). So it's down to Goodhair or Grandma. There's still time, so I'll be checking their stands in the coming days.

By the way, since there's just over a week left before the election, and because Bell is highly unlikely to take my advice, I'll just go ahead and give it here. Bell mentions supporting stem cell research. I say fine and dandy - so long as it is the uncontroversial stem cells. In California, voters passed an initiative for $3 billion for embryonic stem cell research.

Problem is, embryonic stem cells have NEVER proven to work. Ever. Meanwhile, the other, non-controversial stem cells (adult and placental) have worked in ways that supporters of embryonic stem cell research WISH that embryonic stem cells would work.

So why continue to throw money away for something that hasn't proven to work? Somebody somewhere is making money off of this scam, that's for sure. And if California wants to be their pigeon, then so be it. Let them throw their money away.

Meanwhile, Bell can promote the other forms of stem cells that DO work, so that Texas can then become the leader in such stem cell research while California is bitching about the lack of results in their research. And for which they'll find some way to blame Texas.

Odd thing is, California passed this initiative at a time when they were allegedly in a budget crisis. And yet, they found this $3 billion. So someone tell me how throwing money away on a scam is going to help their budget crisis.

But California's budget crisis doesn't have to become ours, if Chris Bell does the right thing. He won't, of course, because he seems to be sold on the bill of goods (or is it "bads"?) of embryonic stem cell research. It's too bad, because he wants to pass Rick Perry, and this would be one way he could do just that. At least, though, someone tried to tell him otherwise.

Chris, get used to saying "Governor Perry" for the next four years!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Funny country song titles

I've seen these before (and you probably have, too), but they're still funny.

But since there's so many, I decided to post a link to them instead.

Funny country song titles

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The Democrats' albatross around their necks

Two columns, one by Leonard Pitts Jr. and another by Larry DeWitt, discuss different topics, but arrive at the same solution; namely, that the reasons that liberals and Democrats are not the influence these days on society as they'd like to be is because of the big, bad GOP and its shenanigans. Understand that I say that NOT as a member of the GOP – which I am not – but as someone who is a former Democratic supporter who is tired of seeing the Dems shoot themselves in the foot.

First, don’t get me wrong; both columns are excellent in their analysis of their respective topics. However, they make the same mistake that most left-wing types make when it comes to analyzing what they (that is, themselves) are doing wrong: They pick the wrong group to lay blame on.

Yes, the GOP is up to its usual shenanigans – but aren’t they always? Isn’t that the nature of politics to be up to shenanigans to mess things up for other parties? And aren’t the Dems also up to their own shenanigans to mess things up for the GOP? So what point is there to accuse the GOP of being up to something that we already know that they are doing, and that the Dems are guilty of doing to the GOP?

It’s human nature – both of humans and of political parties – to blame someone else for their own troubles. But a sign of growth and maturity is the ability to be able to see the man (or woman) in the mirror and know that one’s own troubles generally start with the person staring back at you.

Roe vs. Wade became the albatross that the Dems chose to hang around their neck long ago, and if they choose to keep wearing that damn bird, then that’s their own damn fault. Is it the fault of the GOP to keep calling the Dems on it? They keep calling them on it because it works! And the nature of politics is to go with what works. What’s surprising is that it has worked for so long, and that it’s taken this long for any of the Dems to see it.

Some Dems see it, but way, way too many still don’t see it. It’s almost enough to push one to despair for the poor clueless Dems. However, let me give the Dems some free advice: If you can let go of your love affair with Roe vs. Wade and with embryonic (as opposed to the other, non-controversial) stem cells, then you can go a long way to having your eyes opened and removing that stupid bird.

It won’t turn things around for the Dems right away, but it will be a big, important first step. But will it happen? Time will tell. Stranger things have happened, folks.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

One more video

This was sent to me just today - probably because of yesterday's video day entry.

Anyway, I thought it was so cool that I would go ahead and post it. It's a clip of a Charlie Chaplin mask as it slowly rotates from the front to the back. BUT - as it rotates to the back, the back can sometimes look like it's a separate mask, like it got turned inside out. Anyway, look for yourself and see if you can see what I'm talking about.

Funny how the eyes can play tricks on ya! :-D

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Weekend Wrap-up 10-21-2006

Today's weekend wrap-up is video week, in which I post links to various videos that have been sent to me in recent times.

First up is a short cartoon that has Popeye in a Japanese style cartoon (usually called "anime"). It cracked me up when I first saw it. Whoever did this animation got Popeye down pretty good. I hope that they do other Popeye crossovers. The sailor man works surprisingly well in this skit, and I betcha that he can work in other animation. For instance, I'd like to see Popeye on the old Super Friends cartoon. And speaking of Super Friends...

Next up is the latest version of DC Comic's Justice League. Waaay back in the 1970's, the Justice League was shown in a Hanna Barbera cartoon called "Super Friends". The recent Justice League animation is on Cartoon Network, and it's called "Justice League Unlimited". What you're about to see is about 6-7 minutes long, but you'll see something the JLU Wonder Woman do that the SF Wonder Woman would never do. You'll just have to see what I mean. And to think that this was shown on the Cartoon Network! (Of course, CN also brings you "Adult Swim"...)

Next up is a collection of cat clips of cats doing crazy stuff. It still makes me laugh even though I've seen it several times. Ha! And a quick search on You Tube has brought up a second clip of cat craziness. I don't know why it's so funny to watch cats do all this crazy stuff, but it is.

And before you cat lovers start yammering about how I hate cats and that I am partial to dogs (which is true, by the way), here's a crazy dog clip. It's just as funny as the two cat clips.

And last is a very cool clip of billiards and dominoes in action together. It must have taken forever for this guy to set all that up. Check it out and you'll see what I mean. If you aren't impressed after seeing all that, then you must vote Republican or something... ;-)

That's it for this weekend wrap-up. If you ask nice, maybe I'll do another video weekend at another time.

Have a great week, folks!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Voting strategy for those who don't normally vote

Joseph Sobran's column about a voting strategy for those who normally don't vote actually sounds like a very interesting idea.

Sobran suggests that those who don't normally vote - which is a great majority of us - should vote for the non-incumbent. And do that for every election. Ha! How interesting - and how fun - that would be! Many of these guys need to be voted out anyway, but those of us who do actually vote are the ones who keep those bums in office.

We should try that at least once every 5 years or so, so that the incumbents can't rest easy. Something's got to break the hold that special interest groups have on both (yes, both) parties so that the parties will be more responsive to their constituents again.

Apathy, unfortunately, is as strong an influence on the potential voters as special interest groups are on politicians. But change has to start someone, and it might as well be us - especially since we still have the power to bring about change. What say ye, folks? For once, exercise your right to vote, and if you have no particular favorite, then vote for the non-incumbent. Let's scare the hell out of the politicians by making them wonder just what the heck we are up to. >:-)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Ms. Dewey: online librarian

Here's an interesting site named Ms. Dewey.

Whenever you type in something, she'll respond in some form or fashion, and if you don't type something, she'll tell you that, too! And she's pretty cute, too. ;-)

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Picasso Painting gets an elbow

Boy, I'd hate to be the guy who poked his elbow through a Picasso painting. It's a good thing that the elbow poker was the owner of the painting. Anyway, attached below is my edtoon done in my humble attempt at being Picasso-esque.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

9/11: Then and now

Note: I am republishing my blog entry related to 9/11.

I had initially posted edtoons on that entry, but one comment made me realize that I should post links to those edtoons as I did with the Kim Jong-il edtoons. It's only fair to these cartoonists for me to provide links to their work as I do with the news articles that I comment on this blog. Since finding links to those 9/11 edtoons are not readily available, I decided to forego using them at all. If I can find my own edtoon related to this issue, I shall post it here.


As I was deleting some old e-mails, I came across one that I hadn't seen in a while. It contained editorial cartoons that related our moods in the days and weeks immediately following the 9/11 attacks. I remembered those days and how things seemed to be crazy and out of whack. There was shock, horror, confusion, anger, and a general sense of anomie. Fast forward to today.

Does it feel to you like our mood then seems quite a bit different than it is now? Understand that I'm not at all saying that we are no longer outraged - that sting will always be with us - but that, back then, we seemed more focused on what we wanted to do. We wanted to "kill the bastards" who did this evil act against our people. Today, though, we seem less focused. Why is that? Answering that is a bit complex, because the reasons come from different sources, but in short, it is because our war effort has not been focused like it needs to be.

Yes, we went to Afghanistan and Iraq, but our military efforts there didn't seem to stop the terrorists' effort in spreading fear. Granted, the mood that we felt 5 years ago demanded that we do something - and we did. But 5 years later, it doesn't seem to be enough. Yes, we chased out the Taliban from Afghanistan and we toppled Hussein from Iraq, but our victories there seem to be a Pyrrhic victory.

However, don't think that I'm saying that we need to pull out of Iraq, or that we need to cease our efforts in seeking out the terrorists to severely damage or even end their activities. What I'm suggesting is that we rethink how we're doing things - to find, in other words, how we might be doing these things better and more efficiently. So far, we seem to be doing things largely because we're doing them. That's not a good enough plan. Granted, I'm no military person, but even a civilian such as myself knows that we could be doing things better.

Come election day, think about which candidate that you vote for can do a better job on how we're conducting this war. The victims of 9/11 and our soldiers in the field deserve better than the leadership that is coming from our politicans right now. Their sacrifices must not be in vain, and we must do our part to make it so - and part of that effort comes at the ballot box.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Weekend Wrap-up 10-14-2006

Hello folks!

I have some news to report to you but I'll tell you at the end. So let's get on with the rest of this blog entry.

Texas governor's election race
Well, it has been a week since the debate, and already we have seen some interesting news items going on. First, Democratic candidate Chris Bell makes a good showing in the debate (although I thought he was a little robotic), and then he turns around and inserts his foot into his mouth. First he asks Kinky Friedman to bow out of the race and support him, and when Kinky doesn't do that, he then says that he is going to have Kinky painted as a racist in an upcoming election commercial campaign (details of this sorry drama are in blog entries from earlier this week). This tells me that either Bell is impulsive or just not very smart – and possibly both. Had he thought this over a little more, he would have seen that he just made himself look like he was going to ally himself with someone that he regards as a racist.

In the meantime, Republican candidate Rick “Governor Goodhair” Perry and independent candidate Carole Keeton Strayhorn are left wondering just what the heck is going on. Well, I'll fill them in: All that Bell has accomplished is to make himself look bad while giving Kinky free publicity, and more free publicity that he's already been getting. This was not a good week for Bell, despite the fact that he has a fresh infusion of cash. Perhaps that donor shouldn't have wasted his money. However, Bell gives bloggers such as myself stuff to write about -- not that we didn't already have enough to write about, but we appreciate it anyway. I will most certainly be keeping up with this, you can count on that. :-D

Surprise at the gas pump
Yesterday, I got a big surprise when I went to fill up my car yesterday: the price of gas had actually gone under two dollars. I know there are some conspiracy kooks out there who say that this drastic drop in gas prices is just an election-year ploy by Bush to get votes -- so let me ask you this: is this going to make you vote for Bush? Well, you can't vote for Bush, because he is not running for office! You ask me, this conspiracy theory idea is a rather desperate act. First, Bush was responsible for the rise in gas prices, and now he's responsible for the gas prices going down.

I tell you, the office of the President must really have some juice to be able to make gas prices fluctuate so much. Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez must be green with envy. In the meantime, I managed to fill my tank with less than $30 this time. I don't remember the last time I was able to do that, but it didn't seem all that long ago that I actually complained when gas went up to two dollars a gallon. Boy, the times change pretty quickly.

The television show “Heroes”
I don't know how many of you folks are watching this show, but I am hooked. I'm still not quite sure what's going on in that show, but I already know that my favorite character is the Japanese guy Hiro, because he is such a comics nerd and not ashamed of it. In fact, if it wasn't for Hiro, the show would actually be a little boring. It's in its third episode, and the stories are still building up. I'm ready for the characters with superpowers to start interacting with each other.

As for the other characters, the cheerleader's power of fast healing is rather interesting, and it makes me wonder if she is actually immortal now, and perhaps eternally young. As for the brothers -- or should I say, the flying brothers -- I'm not quite sure where the writers are going with them. I guess we will just have to wait and see. The cop that can read minds can also be an interesting character. He seems to be a decent guy, but I wonder if he is strong enough to do the right thing when he needs to. Something else that will have to wait and see.

As for the stripper, I am not quite sure what her power is. She seems to have an alter ego that she sees whenever she looks into a reflective surface, and then at times the alter ego seems to take over and do terrible and violent things, and then the stripper suddenly “wakes up” and finds herself in the middle of damage and destruction that she doesn't remember causing. This sounds more to me like a psychological problem rather than a super power. So far, we haven't seen the stripper when her alter ego is in control. I'm curious to see how the alter ego will be portrayed once she's finally shown.

I'll say this for the show, “Heroes” -- I am watching it longer than I watched “Survivor” that had race-based tribes. I only watched “Survivor” for two episodes before I lost interest in it, and I hear that by the third show, they weren't even broken up into race tribes anymore. That pretty much ended the sociological experiment before it even really got off the ground. It sounds to me like the producers of that show lost their nerve before things really got interesting. I guess this shows us where we are at in race relations today; basically, that we are not there yet in regards to achieving total racial harmony. It's too bad that the producers lost their nerve so quickly, because producers want ratings and had they allowed this sociological experiment to continue, they would have gotten those ratings that they really want.

Interesting photographs

Check out these pictures I took yesterday while walking around. I came across this little caterpillar and I happened to have my digital camera. It took me a bit to set the camera to be able to zoom in close, but fortunately the caterpillar was going slow enough for me to make the settings, and it happened to be in bright sunlight where it would photograph very well. Sometimes I marvel at the things that we see in nature. While I might not be an outdoor person, it doesn't mean that I can't appreciate the wonders of nature.

Note on the Journey to Nerdville
Okay, now it's time to tell you my news: this whole blog entry was done by a voice recognition program in which this whole text was typed as I spoke. Right now, it's still learning to adjust to my voice, so I'm having to stop and start as it learns to understand what I am saying.

This also makes me enunciate my words more, so perhaps this will also have the side benefit of making me speak more clearly. I was told that it gets better the more I use it, because it will adjust to me more and more. But already, I can see the benefit of using this program. I also need to learn more about how to do some commands by voice instead of going back and forth to the keyboard to make corrections.

I think this will also help me to write better because I am concentrating on how my words sound to the ear as well as what I write. Whenever I write columns, I will type out what I say, then print it out and read it aloud to listen to how it sounds. This helps me to make my columns sound like a conversation rather than an essay. In turn, my columns will be more basic and to the point and understandable to my readers.

But with this new program, I can both speak and write at the same time so I am already hearing how my words sound as I type them, which might make me an even better writer -- and being an even better writer is exactly my goal. This is why I love our current day and age of all this marvelous technology.

The thing I do have to watch though, is that the program doesn't accidentally type something that I don't want it to type. After all, I don't want to be like Chris Bell and have something overheard that I didn't want to be heard. Hmm. Perhaps Chris Bell should look into getting one of these programs as well!

Have a great week, folks!

Okay, now to check the e-mails. Hmm. Boy, some of these e-mails that I get are really dumb. I wonder if they still write in crayon? Hehe. I didn’t know that people could type with their knuckles! Hey, the typing program's still running! No, don't write that! You weren't supposed to write all that - stop typing! Stop it! I said stop typing! Dang, where's the “off” button on this thing? Stop typing!! Ah, here's the “off” button. Whew!

now have a great week, folks!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

"There's something stinky about Kinky"

First, Chris Bell had reached out to Kinky Friedman as a potential ally. And now, barely two days later, Bell's camp is going to have him pegged as a racist. I tell ya, folks - I busted out laughing so hard that I was banging my head on the computer monitor, and I ended up damaging it so much that I had to switch computers.

Oh, this is rich! I love it! See folks, this is one of the reasons that I love election seasons. :-D

Okay, now down to business. If asking Kinky to drop out earlier this week was desperate enough, then turning around and calling him a racist is even more desperate. So what was Chris Bell doing earlier in the week trying to ally himself with someone that he regards as a racist? Apparently, no one in the Bell camp has a clue on how clueless that they just made themselves looked.

C'mon, Bell - knock it off already. You're embarrassing yourself, man, and people are looking at you. And not only that, you're giving Kinky even more free publicity than he's already gotten. Talk about shooting one's foot while being hoisted by their own petard.

However, even with this latest debacle, my offer still stands for you folks in the Bell camp to e-mail me for my idea on what you can do to energize your campaign. Look, you screwed this up pretty much already - what do you have to lose from asking a blogger for his idea for a campaign strategy? Other than the election, that is?

And please, please don't do anything else this dumb, okay? I already busted up one computer monitor from laughing so hard, and I can't afford to bust up the other one.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Chris Bell wants Kinky Friedman to drop out

It has been revealed that Democratic candidate for Texas governor had asked Kinky Friedman to drop out of the race and to join him. Of course, the Bell camp denies that this is a desperation tactic, but how else are they supposed to answer that question?

I could make an edtoon out of this. Bell, dressed as Darth Vader, implores Friedman, "Join me, Kinky, and we can rule the galaxy together!"

Anyway, that Bell resorted to such an act demonstrates that he indeed is desperate. After all, Bell did very well in the debate, but still lags Friedman, who did the worst of the four candidates. I guess I'd be desperate, too, if I were in his shoes. Despite their denials, it seems to me that had Bell been a stellar candidate that the voters all loved, then he wouldn't need to go to Friedman to ask him to drop out.

You know what this looks like? It looks like Bell is proactively covering his ass just in case he does lose next month. In other words, he's going to pull the Al Gore tactic of blaming someone else (in Gore's case, Ralph Nader) instead of the man in the mirror as to why they lost the election. To use such a tactic after an election is bad enough, but to use it before the election...? Sad, man.

I could tell Bell what he could do to draw voters if he were interested, but I don't think he'd do it. I would say it here, but I don't want to make it that easy for him. But if he can ask another candidate to drop out of the race, then he can ask a blogger for campaign advice. If he's gonna ask, though, he'd better do it soon. Time's a wastin'!

By the way, I had told you folks that I e-mailed the candidates after the debate about having more debates, but I have not heard from any of them yet.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Kim Jong-il edtoon

Here's my edtoon on North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-il:

Upon viewing CagleCartoons, I see that I wasn't the only edtoonist to think up this idea. Check this out:



What this shows is that editorial cartoonists often think alike. Kim Jong-il's weird hair leads to the idea of a mushroom cloud as his hair style. (Don't they have hair stylists in North Korea?).

However, I thought of my idea first, and it's the funniest one, in my humble opinion. :-)

Monday, October 09, 2006

Alaska village rejects free Venezuela oil

Can someone explain to me why our country has enough money to build the infamous "bridge to nowhere", and yet can't be bothered helping our fellow Americans?

Especially since these native Alaskans are refusing free oil from Venezuela because of Hugo Chavez's senseless remarks about President Bush.

C'mon, folks. Surely some of you out there can help these brave fellow Americans in their time of need, or have ideas on how to help them. I'm willing to post them here if you've got some good ideas on what we can do.

Let Americans help the Alaskans, instead of Hugo Chavez!

Something to make Democrats scream

Imagine, if you will, if the 2-term limit for U.S. presidents were repealed. Well, such legislation has been introduced. But fear not, Democrats - Bush wouldn't be eligible if this should come to pass.

But I had you going for a second there, didn't I? ;-)

Immediately after the article's text is a link to another article stating that Bill Clinton supports removing the 2-term limit. Now it's the GOP's turn to scream. But fear not, GOPpers, Clinton likely wouldn't be eligible, either.

But I had you going as well, didn't I? \:-)

I'm just in the mood to make everyone jumpy today. Hehe. X-D

Hey, did you hear that North Korea just tested a nuke?

Haha! Got you again! \;-D

Uhoh. Wait. That's for real! 8-(

I shoulda left well enough alone...

(By the way, I'll be posting an edtoon on North Korea either later today or tomorrow).

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Governor's debate: Recap

After watching last night's debate, I have concluded that more debates are needed. There should be at least two more, and preferably three - but of course, Governor Rick "Goodhair" Perry only agreed to do this one. However, I have a way to hopefully prod ol' Goodhair to do at least one more. But more on that later.

As for the rundown on how the candidates did, the short story is that Perry probably won that debate, not because he was that good, but because the other candidates didn't step up like they needed to.

Perry was the most polished, and he said all that you expected him to say. His experience in doing this showed, and compared to the other candidates, he seemed the most confident. However, he also didn't do much beyond what was expected of him. He didn't take any chances because he didn't need to, so we didn't get a real good look at the real Rick Perry. He didn't have to take any chances because no one challenged him enough to take any. Which is why we need more debates with him.

Carol Keeton "Grandma" Strayhorn could have come away the winner of this debate if she hadn't sounded so much like a commercial all the time. How many times did she answer her questions with variations of "We need a governor for all Texans" and "We need to shake up Austin", even if the question wasn't related to her answer? Of the three other candidates, Strayhorn stands the best chance of actually beating Perry, and this debate could have been her moment to shine - and to make Perry sweat. But with only one debate, she probably felt that she needed to get her pitch in while the opportunity presented itself. Too bad she sounded too much like a commercial too much of the time. If there's another debate, the main thing she needs to work on is to stop sounding like a commercial!

Kinky "Kinky" Friedman did the poorest job, but that's mostly because he's not a politician. He had his moments, but they were not often enough. His campaign staff didn't do enough to prepare him for this, and it showed. But something to keep in consideration is that this was his first ever debate, so any one of us going into our first ever debate probably wouldn't do that well, either. He would benefit from more practice so that he can apply from what he learned this time around, and then to use that in other debates. If those occur.

Chris "Who?" Bell needed the most to shine here, and he didn't do it. Is "Al Gore" stiffness part of being a Democrat these days? He needed to show us why we should vote for him rather than Perry (and the other candidates), but all I saw was why the Dems are in a spiraling decline in this state. Don't get me wrong; he wasn't "Kinky Friedman" bad, but he wasn't sparkling, either - and he needed to be sparkling. Instead, he was a monotone robot. If there's another debate, then he should work on being more - lifelike.

Here's what I think should be done to prod ol' "Goodhair" to participate in at least one more debate. Other debates should be scheduled anyway. Like I said above, there should be at least two more and maybe a third. This would give Strayhorn, Friedman, and Bell other chances to polish their act so that their public persona come across better. And in those other debates, there should be a fourth podium as a way to symbolize that Perry isn't there. And be sure to have this podium in the 2nd or 3rd position instead of at one of the ends. That way, the empty podium stands out. The debate coordinator can say each time- that "Governor Perry was invited, but declined."

However, in order for this idea to work, these other three need to get really, really good at this. They need to do so well that Perry will feel pressured to attend at least one more debate if for no other reason than for damage control. If Perry never shows up, then the other three candidates will be free to be their best and be themselves. And of course, the media can keep noting the fact that Perry hasn't shown up, and they can keep asking him during press conferences if he plans to show up at the next debate so the he keeps having to say that he's not. I hope these other candidates give my idea serious consideration. I hope they at least read the e-mail that I am going to send to each of them of this blog entry.

Stay tuned, folks! The festivities are only beginning! :-D

Friday, October 06, 2006

Texas Governor's debate is tonight

Tonight will be the first and only debate among the 4 candidates. Governor Rick "Adios, MoFo*" Perry has agreed to appear at only one debate. That's probably the right thing for him to do, because the more he appears in public with them, the greater the chances that he might do something stupid for the others to capitalize on - and he don't wanna do dat.

This means that the others need to take advantage of the time that they have with Perry. Preparation will be key. The candidate who needs to be the most prepared is Carol Keeton Strayhorn. She will have to absolutely pounce on any opportunity that Perry gives her, but in an "Anne Richards" type of smoothness rather than a "pit bull" type of attack mode.

Kinky Friedman will need to use this opportunity to show the voters that he is indeed serious about running for governor. He's gotten the most free advertising because of his unique personality, but that can also work against him, especially when he acts like a goofball. He needs to be more selective on when he uses humor, and on what kind of humor he uses. Yes, humor is part of who he is, but if he wants to be taken serious as a candidate, then he needs to learn how to be serious when he needs to be serious.

Chris Bell MUST do well in this debate. A mediocre or substandard showing will kill any shot (and it's a long shot as it is) that he might have at winning the governor's seat. Of all the candidates appearing tonight, the most pressure is on him to succeed. Succeed, and his candidacy will receive a shot in the arm. Fail, and he might as well sit out the rest of the race, or hope that the other 3 candidates do something spectactularly bad that he looks good by comparison.

Tomorrow, I'll be posting my take on how each of the candidates do tonight.


*"Adios, MoFo" is what Perry had said to reporters one time when a press conference that he was in had ended. The reporters picked up on that, and it became something of a minor controversy, but it also gave a more human touch to someone who often looks and acts rather stiffly. That comment also spurred a line of t-shirts and other products, which can only help him with free advertising if Perry opponents are foolish enough to wear those things as a way to turn others off on Perry.

By the way, "MoFo" is shorthand for "mother f****r", which I didn't know until a friend of mine told me. He then said, "Didn't you ever hear that phrase in high school?" I told him that, at the high school that I went to, they used the whole phrase, and not just the shorthand version of that phrase.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Staples "Easy" button really works!

Hey, folks... what I'm about to tell you is the honest-to-goodness truth!

I went to Staples yesterday to see if they had a voice-recognition software program that I was looking for. They didn't have it, but they said they'd order it, and it would come in about a week. I went ahead and got that set up.

I got a call today from Staples, and they said that my order was going to be even later. Seeing as how the Staples store that I ordered the software from was on the way back from one of my errands, I thought that I'd drop by to see how much later it was going to be. One of the sales folks said that she was going to check in the back about the order. As I was waiting, I saw one of their "Easy" buttons in a display. I pressed it just for the heck of it, and a recorded voice said "That was easy."

And folks, not even a minute later, I happened to look at their software shelf --and there was the very software that I had ordered! I swear to you folks, I checked there yesterday, and it wasn't there! It really works! I showed it to the clerk who had come back out of their offices. She was surprised as well, and she gave me that software and said that they would just put the ordered software on their shelf.

So folks, for once, one of these companies actually lived up to their advertising!

That was easy! :-D

Ms. Magazine's omission on the abortion issue

Ms. Magazine is going to run an article in which women state that they've had abortions and are happy about their decision. However, in this article, the LifeNews.com website says that Ms. is only running the stories that they want to hear (in other words, that "abortion is a good thing"), and will not be telling the stories of the women who regret their abortions.

While Ms. Magazine is entitled to run with what they please, it also seriously undermines their credibility and professionalism to be ignoring one whole side of this issue just so that it can put a sunny face on their side. Imagine if you will, another women's magazine that ran a similar article presenting itself as discussing the abortion issue, but ran only the horror stories? Would this be regarded as fair and unbiased? If you think that, then you also believe that Michael Moore and Rush Limbaugh are fair and unbiased.

This situation makes me ask, "If Ms. is so certain that they're right about the abortion issue, then why wouldn't they run the stories of women who regret their abortions?" The only answer that I can think of is that Ms. subconsciously is afraid of giving exposure to views that don't agree with theirs. Why would they be afraid? Because they don't want to be wrong on this issue. For someone to not allow the opposition to have their say is a virtual statement that this person is not confident in their own views.

No one wants to be wrong, but a mature person will face up to their error and learn from it. For someone to manipulate a discussion so that his opponent does not get their say implies that they are hiding something. My hope is that the media will step up and point that out to Ms. They probably won't - but one can only hope.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

From the Dept. of Redundancy Dept.

I had to comment on this news headline, because it's just too funny to let go by without saying anything. Isn't saying that a clown is running for office a bit of a redundancy? ;-)

First we have clowns running for office, now we have someone on the ballot who wants the voters to vote for his opponent. What the heck kinda freak show elections are we running this year?

New safety feature?

This story tells of a woman who survived a car crash not because of airbags, but because of the silicone implants in her breasts. In addition to providing monologue material for late night shows, no doubt that the implant industry will try to capitalize on this. This kind of story says something about our day and age, but I ain't quite sure what that is...

I was informed of this story, in which a woman in Lebanon during the recent war was saved from shrapnel by her breast implants. I STILL don't know what this says about our day and age.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Weekend Wrap-up 10-1-2006

Hugo Chavez: Open mouth, insert foot
As a result of Hugo Chavez's comments regarding George Bush, some people are boycotting the Venezuelan company, Citgo. 7-Eleven, which had previously served Citgo gas, now will be dropping it, though they deny that it has anything to do with Chavez's comments. It certainly won't hurt them in any case to stop, because if they continued serving Citgo, they most likely would have gotten protests and such. Chavez's comments were ridiculous not only in that he didn't say anything beyond name-calling, but also that he insulted his country's biggest customer. While Americans can be tolerant to a fault, they aren't stupid, either. While I never purchased Citgo gasoline before, I certainly won't be buying it now. And I hope this boycott works, because I want to see what Hugo Chavez does once he sees that his best customers are walking out on him.

Editorial statement for October 2006
Continuing something that I started last month, here is my one sentence editorial statement for October 2006: "The easiest way to deal with the problem of illegal immigration is to deal with the reason that they're coming here: the U.S. companies that hire illegal immigrants." I am bringing this up because it is likely going to be an issue in next month's election. The thing is, most debate and discussion on this issue are going about it in the wrong way. They are dealing with the illegal immigrants themselves - which is important, but it's not the best way to take care of the problem (and yes, I believe that illegal immigration is a problem - specifically the "illegal" part). The way to look at this issue is to see why they are coming here in the first place.

It is because they know that there are companies here that will hire them, this despite the fact that they know that they are here illegally. So why would a company hire illegal aliens? It's because illegals work for much less than American workers. And illegals have no other expenses attached to them, like health insurance, overtime pay, and other benefits that the rest of us take for granted in this country. Illegals work much cheaper, and with no union to back them up, they can't complain about the working conditions, because their illegal status hangs over their head like the proverbial sword of Damocles.

So essentially, dealing with the illegal immigration problem by dealing with the illegal immigrants themselves is seeing this issue from too small a perspective. All that these critics accomplish is to plug the holes in a leaky dam while ignoring who is making the holes in the first place. And that hole-maker is the companies that hire illegals. During most of this year, the Democratic party and even unions had tried to court illegal immigrants, but this is a mistake in so many ways.

For Dems, it gives the regular working American the idea that the Dems are more concerned about people who are here illegally than for the constituency that they allege to be serving: the American people - especially the American worker. Plus, this tactic gives "ammo" to the GOP to use leading up to November's election day. For some reason, the Dems are making into an art form the handing of such political "ammo" to the GOP. It's like they want to fail, and it's disturbing. But I digest...

For the unions, there's no better way for them to shoot themselves in the foot than to support illegal immigrants - who are taking jobs that union workers could have! If an illegal works in the place of a union worker, then this deprives the union of the dues that could be paid by a union worker, along with the "clout" that being in a union brings to the negotiating table. If a union is stocked with illegals, then what power do they have in contract negotiations? None, son. If anything, unions should be the most outspoken against the practice of U.S. companies hiring illegals. But I shouldn't have to be saying all this; unions should know this already, and if they don't, then they deserve the reduction of influence that they've had in recent decades.

And last, the hiring of illegal immigrants does very little to motivate them to eventually becoming U.S. citizens. Actually, the U.S. companies that hire illegals wouldn't want them to become legal citizens, because then they'd have to pay them more, for then they'd qualify for the workers' rights that U.S. workers get - which defeats the whole purpose of hiring illegals in the first place! So the best way to deal with the influx of illegal immigrants is to deal with the reason that they risk so much coming here: the U.S. companies that hire them. A united effort to truly punish companies that hire illegals will make it less palatable to hire them, and thus, it makes the risk that illegals go through to get here not worth the trip. Deal with the people who are making the holes in the dam in the first place, rather than dealing with the holes themselves.

Texas Governor's race
As a political commentator, I love the fact that the race for the Texas governor's mansion is a four-way race. From Rick "Governor Goodhair" Perry to Carole Keeton "Grandma" Strayhorn, to Kinky "Kinky" Friedman to Chris "Who?" Bell, this is one race that's for the ages. Not surprisingly, Perry is limiting his debate appearances to just one. He has nothing to gain from appearing in these debates (at least not too many of them), and he has his governorship to lose. For Perry, all he has to do is to basically avoid doing anything stupid, and he's likely to win re-election.

However, if he does slip up, then I believe that it will be Strayhorn first, and then Friedman next who will most benefit. For Bell, he is a longshot under any scenario other than the other candidates dying under mysterious causes (and let's hope that it doesn't come to that!). The Dems really needed a more sparkling personality as a candidate, and Bell ain't it. For the rest of this month leading up to election day, I shall try to post at least two entries a week related to the governor's race - and more if certain news events call for it. Oh yeah, and I definitely need to work on making some edtoons of this. Have a seat, folks - the fun's just starting!

For a brief moment last week, I entertained the idea of having my hair cut into a mohawk style. However, a mohawk on a person with a receding hairline is a rather sad sight, so that idea died rather quickly.

Have a great week, folks!