Tag Archives: politics

Toby Keith for Obama?

WTF?

The fact that he’s a Democrat surpises the hell out of me, but it’s a free country, so whatev.

The real question is whether he’ll get the same sort of backlash that the Dixie Chicks got for criticizing Preznit Bush.  I’m going out on a limb here, but I think that a lot of country music fans are, by now, pretty sick of Bush’s shit, and they’ll cut Toby some slack.

What say you, Internets?

Go Dems!

The Democrats certainly had a good night last night.  They took control of the House, and it’s looking increasingly likely that they’ll have a slim majority in the Senate, too.  Both Democratic Senate candidates in Montana and Virginia, the two undecided states, have 4-digit leads, so their chances in a recount are very good.

I’m very excited about this.  If you have been reading this blog (or any of its predecessors) for any time at all, you know that I’m not a fan of the Bush administration and his rubber-stamp Congress.  Just having control of the House would have been fine by me, so gaining control of the Senate is icing on the cake (and fairly remarkable, since the probability of them doing so was small).

So the easy part is done.  We won control of the House and (presumably) the Senate.  Now comes the hard part of fixing what has been broken and getting our country back on the right track.  Are the newly-elected Democratic majorities up to the task?  Can they take on the Most Stubborn President Ever and win?

Another electoral loser

Remember my earlier post about election candidates who died prior to their election, yet still won anyway?  Well, it has happened again:

PIERRE, S.D. – A woman who died two months ago won a county commissioner’s race in Jerauld County on Tuesday.

Democrat Marie Steichen, of Woonsocket, got 100 votes, defeating incumbent Republican Merlin Feistner, of Woonsocket, who had 64 votes. […]

Peterson said voters knew Steichen had died.

“They just had a chance to make a change, and we respect their opinion.”

You have to be extremely incompetent or corrupt in order to lose to a two month-old corpse.  I applaud the voters for doing the right thing.  If Feistner wasn’t being an effective and fair public servant, I’m glad they booted him out of office, even if it means the position is vacant for the time being.

Go vote!

Please take the time to go vote today.  If you don’t kwow where your polling place is, check here.  (It is a Democratic Web site, but it takes you to your state’s SoS Web site, or to a list of your local officials who can get you more information.)

Click here for a little election day motivation.

The Hypocritic Oath

Nice.

I think that it is time that we ask that all Evangelicals supporting anti-gay marriage provisions to pledge that they themselves are not having gay sex or doing meth.

We’ll call it the Hypocritic Oath.

(If you haven’t been following the news lately, it’s in reference to this whack job.)

Where was this John Kerry two years ago?

So if you've been paying attention to the news at all today, you've heard about the latest Bush-Kerry brouhaha.  Here's what started it all off:

Kerry told a group of California students on Monday that those unable to navigate the country's education system "get stuck in Iraq." 

Kerry admits that it was a botched joke, but the Bush administration jumped on it like a fat kid on a cupcake, accusing Kerry — a decorated war veteran — of criticizing U.S. troops in Iraq.

But unlike when he was Swiftboated in the 2004 presidential election, Kerry hits back.  Hard.

"If anyone thinks a veteran would criticize the more than 140,000 heroes serving in Iraq and not the president who got us stuck there, they're crazy. This is the classic G.O.P. playbook.   I'm sick and tired of these despicable Republican attacks that always seem to come from those who never can be found to serve in war, but love to attack those who did.

I'm not going to be lectured by a stuffed suit White House mouthpiece standing behind a podium, or doughy Rush Limbaugh, who no doubt today will take a break from belittling Michael J. Fox's Parkinson's disease to start lying about me just as they have lied about Iraq . It disgusts me that these Republican hacks, who have never worn the uniform of our country lie and distort so blatantly and carelessly about those who have.

The people who owe our troops an apology are George W. Bush and Dick Cheney who misled America into war and have given us a Katrina foreign policy that has betrayed our ideals, killed and maimed our soldiers, and widened the terrorist threat instead of defeating it. These Republicans are afraid to debate veterans who live and breathe the concerns of our troops, not the empty slogans of an Administration that sent our brave troops to war without body armor.

Bottom line, these Republicans want to debate straw men because they're afraid to debate real men. And this time it won't work because we're going to stay in their face with the truth and deny them even a sliver of light for their distortions. No Democrat will be bullied by an administration that has a cut and run policy in Afghanistan and a stand still and lose strategy in Iraq." 

Clearly, the man has learned a thing or two since losing to Bush 43 in 2004.  Had he shown his juevos then like he is showing them now, it may have been a different story.  No point in dwelling on the past, though.  The future looks bright for the Democrats.

(Quote lifted from DailyKos.)

Making the case for stem cell research

You need look no further than this article to see why stem cell research should be fully supported by the U.S. government:

Nerve cells grown from human embryonic stem cells and injected into the brains of rats with a syndrome mimicking Parkinson's disease significantly reduced the animals' symptoms, but the treatment also caused tumors in the rodents' brains, scientists reported yesterday. […]

Goldman said he suspected that with modest changes in technique, researchers will be able to keep the benefits of the treatment while eliminating or reducing the chances of getting the cancerlike growths. But he conceded that much more basic research would have to be done before scientists — or regulators — were likely to be convinced of the approach's safety. […]

The team injected the cells into the brains of rats, which had been given a chemical that causes damage similar to that seen in Parkinson's. The new cells integrated into the animals' brains and produced copious amounts of dopamine. As a result, the animals' motor coordination improved almost to the point of being normal, according to the report in yesterday's online edition of the journal Nature Medicine.

But when the animals were autopsied after three months and their brains were examined microscopically, the team found multiple tumors, indicating that some of the injected cells did not settle into the job of being neurons but rather had begun to grow uncontrollably.

Obviously, the technique has not yet been perfected, but if they are able to work out all of the kinks, think about the implications: No more Levodopa cocktails, no more deep brain stimulation in which the patients have to "wear" an external battery pack (not to mention that DBS is only available to a small percentage of Parkinson's sufferers), and a return to normal or near-normal life for the thousands, possibly millions, of Parkinson's patients throughout the world.

Case in point: Michael J Fox suffers from Parkinson's Disease.  Fox is a national treasure, what with all of the joy his acting has brought to us.  There is an ad circulating right now in which he urges voters to support one candidate over another because the former supports lifting the ban on stem cell research.  The video itself is heartbreaking.  My words could never do it justice.  It'll hit you like a ton of bricks.  How great would it be to cure him and enable him to get back in front of the camera and do what he does best?  Now imagine how great it would be to cure one of your friends or family members.

We have a moral obligation to help people like Michael J Fox, and this lab study is further evidence of the potential cures that stem cell research can bring to us.  I need to research the arguments more thoroughly because what I know of them is based on what I've read on blogs.  But as I understand it, the embryos used for research are set to be discarded anyway.  If they're not ever going to be used for procreation, why not use them to help out your fellow living, breathing, productive members of society?

What irks me the most is the hypocrisy of those who vehemently oppose stem cell research.  I just know that if/when scientists use stem cells to find cures for some of the various maladies that afflict human kind, stem cell research opponents who have in the mean time become sufferers will be among the first in line to receive treatment.  And they should receive treatment, because to deny them would be inhumane.  But still… the "it should be outlawed until I need it" double standard makes my blood boil, especially when it is impeding the science that could one day improve the lives of so many people.  It's selfishness at its worst.

So please, for the good of so many that suffer from chronic diseases, vote to support stem cell research.