Thursday, November 29, 2012
Monday, November 26, 2012
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
If you are looking for a beautiful race to run, this is it. If it is your first marathon, they will greet you at the finish line with a framed copy of your race bib. It's pretty cool. If you are looking for some tasty, tasty chicken tortilla soup after a race, this is also the place to be. Finally, if you are looking for a race that will scare the crap out of you at the beginning, then this, again, is the place - they shoot off a Civil War cannon to start the race. It's....loud.
Monday, November 19, 2012
A few years ago, in The Great State Of Tennessee, Governor Sundquist decided that it was too problematic for grocery store clerks to use discretion when deciding if a customer was old enough to buy beer. He sent a law through the legislature that said (I'm paraphrasing) that all customers buying beer must produce id, regardless of age. Now, instead of using a common sense approach, i.e "if you look like you are younger than 40, you must show id", instead, your own great grandfather would have to show you his drivers licence before you could sell beer to him in the grocery store. Also, an existing law here says that it is illegal for a minor to sell alcohol.
So, I'm in the local Bi-Lo grocery store in beautiful Cleveland, Tennessee one day, and I put my 6 pack (not my abs, but beer) on the conveyor belt for the clerk to ring up. Of course, she asks me for my id (please see my profile picture to understand why that is such a stupid thing). ------->
or ↓ for a closeup
THE STORE CLERK
I show her my id, and then she asks me if I will press the enter key on the cash register, because if she rings it up, SHE WILL BE BREAKING THE LAW, as she is only 17!
"Eh, whatever", you say. "Why are you getting so excited about that?" BECAUSE IT IS STUPID! We are conditioning ourselves to accept stupidity as the norm.
Stating the obvious: First, I'm 53. Anyone who thinks I could possibly be too young to purchase alcohol should not be allowed to operate a cash register. Second, pressing a button, or having me press a button, does nothing to achieve the goals of these laws, which, ultimately, are to keep underage people from buying and selling alcohol.
I don't have any great answers. Just thought I'd gripe.
Thanks for reading. Now, you kids: Get off my lawn!
Thursday, November 15, 2012
Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Tilden (above) outpolled Hayes (below), but Hayes became our esteemed 19th President, doing very little while in office.
This is also why larger states that are very close in the polls are so important (for instance, the winner of the highly contested, and very close, Ohio vote will pick up 18 Electors, or about 6.7% of the total electors needed to win - even if he only wins the state by one vote)
Arguments Against the Electoral CollegeThose who object to the Electoral College system and favor a direct popular election of the president generally do so on four grounds:
- the possibility of electing a minority president - a voting minority, not a racial minority! (my edit)
- the risk of so-called "faithless" Electors,
- the possible role of the Electoral College in depressing voter turnout, and
- its failure to accurately reflect the national popular will.
Proponents of the Electoral College system normally defend it on the philosophical grounds that it:
- contributes to the cohesiveness of the country by requiring a distribution of popular support to be elected president
- enhances the status of minority interests,
- contributes to the political stability of the nation by encouraging a two-party system, and
- maintains a federal system of government and representation