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What Would People Think?

Friday, February 23, 2007

What cats and Joseph Biden Have in Common

What they have in common is that I'm about to blog about them in another one of those multi-topic posts.

1. Christy's cat, Max, isn't doing too well. He's somewhere around 18 years old...Methusaleh in cat years. He's walking funny, slipping a lot, and not putting weight on his left side. But he doesn't seem to be in pain. Christy is distraught. We're taking him to a vet tomorrow.

[Update:] I wrote that part yesterday. We took him to the vet this morning. She says it's probably nerve damage from jumping off too high a height.....and, well, being really old. Right now we are just trying to give him a lot of rest and keep him off high surfaces. This is really hard on Christy. She's owned Max for 15 years and there were times when he was her only friend.

2. Stupid, widely publicized comments about African-American candidates be damned, I'm throwing my fickle, influence-free support behind Joseph Biden for President. Why? No, I don't think he has a snowball's chance in hell of winning. His name isn't Barak, Hilary, John (pick one), Mitt, or Rudy. And my decision is basically based on a sound bite. At a recent Q-and-A with various Democratic candidates, Biden is the only one that seemed to be thinking long-term. Most were talking about their various plans for getting out of Iraq. Dennis Kucinich was basically chanting about how he opposed the war from the beginning. Biden's the only one who said "we need to get out of Iraq....but then what? We need to think about how to prevent the Middle East from descending into chaos because of our mistake." Seeing as lack of foresight is one of the current administration's chief flaws, I consider such forward thinking very important. Looking to see if there was anything to back up that phrase, I looked at Biden's campaign site and saw that he does indeed have a rather detailed and logical plan for (a) getting out of Iraq and (b) preventing the Middle East from imploding in the process.

[Update:] Since I last wrote that part of the post, Tom Vilsack has already dropped out because the money's being absorbed by the likes of Obama and Clinton. Vilsack was left with no money to even pay his campaign staff. Sad that those with money are going to kick out so many candidates - including, probably, Biden - before we really get a chance to vote for or against them. Yeah, I guess I can vote with my pocketbook. Perhaps a Howard Dean-like candidate can pull together a lot of small donations and stay competitive. But let's face it, Joe Biden is no Howard Dean. Obama probably has the best chance of exciting the grassroots.

3. The Supreme Court recently struck down a large punitive damages decision against Phillip Morris. Their reasoning was that comments by the plaintiff's lawyers may have caused the jury to award the huge punitive damages sum in order to punish Phillip Morris for harm that cigarettes have caused to the public in general, not just to this particular plaintiff. As a strong supporter of punitive damages, I have my beefs with the specifics of this decision. [i.e. How can "reprehensibility" be a factor in weighing the appropriateness of punitive damages if you can't look at how much damage a particular actor's behavior causes?] But I think the idea of focusing exclusively on the parties to the lawsuit has its merits....

So, next the Supreme Court is ready to throw out 3 Strikes laws, right? I mean, you don't want to be punishing someone for actions other than the ones currently before the court, right? After all, it's unconstitutional to punish someone for harms they may or may not have caused to someone who is not a party to the current case, right? RIGHT? Be consistent, Mr. or Ms. Supreme Court Justice. Throw 'em out.

4. Oscars are tomorrow. Over the past 3 years, I can safely say that fully half of my TV watching has been seeing the Oscars. (Yes, I watch that little TV.) But this year is unique in how few of the Oscar films I've seen. I've only seen 2 of the Best Picture nominees, none of the roles nominated for Best Actor, 2 in Supporting Actor, 1 in Best Actress (Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada....for the love of God, it was The Devil Wears Prada! I've sunk that low), 2 in Supporting Actress, 2 in Cinemtography, 2 in Directing, 2 in both of the Screenplay categories.....well, I've seen 4 of the 5 Best Song nominees. Thank you, Dreamgirls.

I think there is no better way of ending a post then saying "Thank you, Dreamgirls." Oh, and Goth Pigeons. Thank you.


  • Joe Biden! Thank you! It was driving me nuts that I couldn't remember which dumbass candidate shot himself in the foot with that comment about Obama moments after announcing his candidacy. As for me, I originally had my eye on Vilsack, but so much for that. Now I'm eying Bill Richardson. Not saying this is who I'm throwing my support behind - in my opinion, it's way too early for that - but I'm mostly looking for dark horses at the moment. Oh, and if I voted with my pocketbook, I'd probably be voting Republican. Actually, I'd probably vote Libertarian. But first, I'd have to buy a pocketbook.

    Yes, the Supreme Court needs to eliminate 3 Strikes laws. Also, not really related, but I might be the only person I know who can sit down at lunch with several co-workers and have conversations in which we all unanimously agree that prostitution and marijuana should be legalized. What's that about engineers all being conservative again?

    As for the Oscars, let's see: I've seen 3 Best Pictures, 1 Best Actor, no Best Actresses, 4 Supporting Actors and 4 Supporting Actresses, all 5 Cinematography (if "Children of Men" doesn't win, I may throw a fit), 2 in Directing, 3 of each screenplay, and all 5 Songs. That's right, baby, I beat the movie master. I rule!

    By Blogger Mike, at 2/25/2007 10:58 AM  

  • I was liking Vilsack too... And though I like Biden's Iraq plan, I don't know enough about what else he's got going on to say I support him. As for Republican candidates... I pray it's not Romney or Gulliani. Rudy is pretty much the worst candidate I could ever imagine; worse even than the current guy.

    By Blogger Matthew B. Novak, at 2/25/2007 12:20 PM  

  • Yeah, Giuliani would be insane. I don't know what's wrong with Romney - he did a pretty good job governor-ing Massachusetts in my opinion. He's probably hanging out with I Heart Huckabee as my favorite Republicans so far, though I do have a soft spot for Ron Paul.

    As for the Dems, I like Richardson, Obama, and Edwards (yeah, I'm from NC, you got a problem with that?)

    And Mike, there tends to be a higher percentage of libertarians in engineering and the sciences.

    Three strikes laws blow. Nothing like life in jail for petty larceny. Cue Victor Hugo.

    By Blogger Jeff, at 2/26/2007 2:34 PM  

  • Good point, Jeff, and at my office we are by and large. The only counterpoint I would offer is, what was our main rationale for legalization? You guessed it: being able to regulate and tax the hell out of it.

    Romney worries me because he seems to have dramatically changed his opinion on certain (admittedly hot button and not at all important in the general election) issues. And yeah, Giuliani would suck if for no other reason than the incessant "Rudy! Rudy!" chants that would inevitably ensue.

    Personally, I'm really hoping for a surge from a third party.

    By Blogger Mike, at 2/27/2007 10:38 AM  

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