Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Ok, Just Shut Up and Play!

Add another one to the list of those who should be seen and not heard. It appears Pittsburgh Steeler Rashard Mendenhall has decided to bestow us with a hot steaming pile of his insight. It appears that Mr. Mendenhall has reservations about terrorists being responsible for the bombing of the World Trade Centers and also has decided to declare that people should not celebrate the death of bin Laden as we have "only heard one side".

Read here.

This coming from a gentleman who agreed with Adrian Peterson when he likened playing in the NFL for (gasp) eight figures, as "slavery".

Ok, Mr. Mendenhall, you find it impossible that planes could take down the Twin Towers the way they did? Um, I guess you're putting your engineering or architectural degree to good use with that analysis. Oh wait! You didn't finish college did you? You decided to forgo getting a degree in order to allow yourself to be bought into the chains of slavery!

To say that we can't hate such an evil person and rejoice in his demise is ignorant. Furthermore, to say that you cannot understand how people could hate a man whom they've never heard speak is absolutely preposterous. Bin Laden's message was conveyed though his ACTIONS. And we all know that actions speak louder than words, unless you blocked out that lesson in school while you were running plays in your head instead.

Saying that we have only heard one side is just lame and ignorant. Sometimes there need be no other side to consider, especially when one side has resulted in the deaths of THOUSANDS.

My guess is that once he hits the gridiron again, he'll be hearing just one side from the bleachers.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Social Experiment

I know I have only blogged about once since the elections last year but watching this little news spot kinda brought me out of semi-retirement.

Straight-A student Gaby Rodriguez decided to conduct a social experiment where she pretended to be pregnant to observe everyone's reaction and to shatter stereotypes.

View the interview here.

Ok, sounds fair enough, it was a big risk. However, there were a few things with which I had an issue.

First, it struck me that she said when she revealed that she was in fact NOT pregnant, there were people that were SAD. I can understand being shocked, but being sad that a teenager was not pregnant, really?

Second, she stated that the rumors were that she was irresponsible, probably wouldn't finish college, and that it was bound to happen. While I disagree with assertions that it was bound to happen, I must say unless it was due to factors outside of your control such as rape or incest, getting pregnant when you're in your teens is ALWAYS irresponsible and it does exponentially reduce your chances of attending and/or finishing college.

Third, she stated she would forward her findings to community leaders in an effort to shatter stereotypes and foster more understanding and acceptance? I hope I'm not reading too much into this but I do not think that we should be accepting of teenage pregnancy. Teenage pregnancy is an epidemic plaguing our schools and when we've become more concerned with whether or not an expectant mother will be able to maneuver down the stairs at the end of the stage and whether or not she'll pop before she graduates rather than where she'll be attending college, we've got a SERIOUS problem. I think the problem is that we have in fact become too blase about the whole thing.

I do not feel that talking about it in any community setting will help unless the talk is more about driving the point home that getting pregnant in your teens is NOT acceptable or in any way glamorous and that it cannot be expected that everyone around you alter their lives to cater to this new condition. Perhaps this is the direction this straight-A student should take.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Hate To Say I Told You So!

I have been saying for YEARS how the corruption and dysfunction in New Orleans city government was unlike anything you would ever see in your life. To that I would normally get the response of "Well, so does Chicago and Detroit..." I normally have to say no, this is STILL unlike any of their politics. And now, it has finally come to light, well sort of. If you go to Nola.com in the politics section, the link to this article is WAY at the bottom of the page. I guess they wanted to put it out there but not make it too blaringly obvious. Or maybe they just didn't want to distract from the articles on Mardi Gras festivities. I'm sure they'll hoping this article will just fade away but at the same time say that they did in fact report it and that it wasn't their fault if no one was paying attention.

I admit I'm extremely hypercritical of my hometown, but for good reason. Sometimes it needs it. The same way I sing its praises, people need to be aware of how incredibly dysfunctional it is. This has been going on for generations, and I mean generations, to the point where it's the lifestyle.

There is the constant cycle of those voicing their discontent with the system yet they are very ones who perpetuate it (re-elect Nagin, are you kidding me?) I'll give credit and say that things have picked up after Katrina but it's at a glacial pace. Just go about an hour east to Gulfport and Biloxi and you'll see what I mean. There are cries for growth and progress in New Orleans but just about everyone in that city is a saboteur. Many are not willing to make the necessary sacrifices to really improve things. You may have to go without, things may need to be realigned, departments may need to be closed, and YOU MAY HAVE TO EXERCISE MORE PERSONAL ACCOUNTABILITY and BE MORE PROACTIVE.

As the article states, everything is mired in red tape. They complain that businesses are leaving or not coming at all, it's because it's too difficult to get started and/or too hard to maintain. In my recent visits I've noticed that the vast majority of people who are even remotely well off own their own business. But for those who are not at luxury of starting their own business and need to go and work for someone else, they're all but SOL.

The minimum requirements for almost all the jobs are almost impossible for the average resident to obtain. They want the maximum amount of education and experience for the minimum pay. It's either you have a bachelor's or masters and may just get a job that's mediocre at best, or you don't have a degree and have to basically resign yourself to waiting tables in the French Quarter forever. Civil service gigs may be the next best thing around to owning your own business, but even those are difficult to come by. The test alone serves as a huge roadblock if you're not able to drive to Baton Rouge by 7:30 AM to take the test, seeing as though the dates are floating and pretty much quite rare in parishes like Orleans. There are very few civil service jobs you can even apply for without it. And if you're an out-of-towner trying to apply for a civil service position yet can't make the crap shoot to fly down for one of the tests, forget about it. You may be turned away because the testing center is full. It makes absolutely no sense that someone like myself should have such a difficult time finding meaningful employment (yes, I'm taking this quite personally).

Instead of actively cutting taxes, they decide over and over again to RAISE them. Tell me what sense does it make for people to be making average salaries in the $20-35k range to be paying combined state and parish taxes of 9% ALONE? And WHERE on earth does the money go? Certainly not towards the potholes, I can tell you that!

They say admitting it is the first step to recovery, and I am certainly hoping that Landrieu makes good on his promises and at least brings New Orleans to maybe 15 years behind the times instead of about 30.

Monday, November 1, 2010

How "Moranic" Can We Get?

I love living here in Alexandria and never thought that there would have been anything to compel me to move out of this area. That was until last year, and even more so recently. As I have been tracking the congressional race in my district, VA-8, I have become increasingly incensed by what I have discovered about the incumbent, Jim Moran.

Let me start by saying, that in a fit of MAJOR ignorance, I did vote for Moran once, simply because I absolutely did not know any better. What a difference a day makes. Living in this area, Northern Virginia, it can be very easy to lose sight of things when you're surrounded by so many wonderful things, at least compared to where I grew up. It's easy to think that things are really going great until you begin to dig beneath the surface to see how we actually got there.

On the surface, it looked like Moran was doing an OK job for the area, but the more I began to pay attention to him, the less impressed I became. It's easy to come off as good when there is no adversity. But in the past few years, Moran has really shown how unworthy he is to continue representing this district.

I am only just reading the latest issue of Alexandria Times, wherein almost the entire periodical is packed with articles regarding the congressional race, as well as op-eds from (heaven help me) clueless constituents. I was beside myself when I read an opinion from one woman who claimed that Moran was ideal for the district because he was endorsed by the Humane Society of the United States. Really, lady? The economy is crumbling and all you care about is that some shops put out doggie treats and water for your pet while you shop? She's probably one of those who carts her pet around in a stroller while her child straggles behind her (yes, you will see that here). Another leftist who most probably cares more about animals than the lives of other humans. I say, it's so much more dignified to chase behind a domesticated animal and clean up their poop than to wipe the bottom of a child could change the world one day, right?

Such contempt has Moran for those who are not part of the political elite, that it was said Republican candidate Patrick Murray was "not a good fit for this district". Really? Not a good fit? How on earth do you mean? Apparently this district is so "enlightened", yet in my observances, most of the sophists that live here can't walk and chew bubble gum at the same time. They are actually too smart for their own good. Many of them have advanced degrees yet are utterly oblivious and lacking in common sense.

To show how poor a sport Moran is, we have seen him go from at least somewhat smiling to having almost a perpetual scowl of indignation. He does not take kindly to being opposed, questioned or challenged. I know from personal experience as I, a constituent, tried for approximately three months to have an audience with him but was constantly rebuffed. Everytime I called, I was asked "what organization are you with?" After the few contentious town halls that were conducted over the health care debate, his appearances dried up. His House website provided almost no up to date information informing us on any upcoming meetings, until there was a women's forum, which I viewed as a superficial way of pretending he cared about women's issues, and simply a means of how to "deal" with the injured economy and unemployment rather than rail against it.

To add insult to injury, he recently made comments dismissing candidate Murray's 24-year military service as not being any "kind of public service". Tough words coming from someone who has voted with Nancy Pelosi approximately 97% of the time. As a military veteran, I found it hard to contain myself after hearing such haughty remarks, and quite honestly I couldn't imagine any self-respecting service member or veteran, of which there are many in this area, being able to dismiss such disrespectful remarks from a career politician.

So used to being unquestioned and unopposed, Moran becomes pugnacious when challenged by Jason Mattera on the matter of stimulus money going to phantom districts. He has been known to be quite standoffish when he feels threatened. I'm not sure I care to have someone with such a hair trigger.

Jim Moran believes:

  1. It's not government overspending that landed us in this economic mess.
  2. Earmarks are powerful and he has no qualms about using them.
  3. The Joint Forces Command should be reduced in size.
  4. That another stimulus plan would be favorable even if the previous ones didn't work.
  5. Defense spending should be reduced.

Actually, if you take a look at this list compiled at Right Wing News, Jim Moran appears to be a repeat offender.

As of today, a poll conducted by Alexandria Times reflected that 64.3% would vote for Moran, 21.4% would vote for Murray, and 14.3% would vote for Independent Green candidate Ron Fisher. As they say, a fool and his money are soon parted, and people in this area earn a lot of it. I'm not so sure that I want to be one of them anymore.

Ashton and Demi Strike Again!

Yet another testament to the poor judgment and half-witted actions of Hollywood power couple, Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore, it has come out that they may have violated NCAA rules by meeting with two University of Iowa basketball recruits.

This gaffe is coming from the very same couple who during the 2008 presidential campaign worked up audiences at colleges like Grinnell in favor of Obama. Quite frankly I don't think I want to hear about money matters from someone who gets paid millions to act like a complete jackass and play pranks on unsuspecting people. And let us not forget that creepy creepy pledge to serve a man about which they knew absolutely nothing. The pledge almost sounds like an unsettling rant about Scientology from Tom Cruise.

I feel like America has been punk'd long enough. Do these people care anything about learning the rules before they act? Are they completely clueless without a script? Or is it simply that deep down they're part of the Hollywood elite that believes they transcend all the rules that bind common folk?

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The One-Night-Stand that Wasn't

In usual Johnny-come-lately fashion, I'm only just reading the Gawker hit piece on Christine O'Donnell. To me it starts off as a "Dear Penthouse" letter but ends up falling completely flat, literally and figuratively. In an efforts to hurt or insult O'Donnell, this man (can we even call him a man?), decides to describe a one-night-stand that actually didn't happen. Can you say LAME? My goodness, where do I even begin?

  1. If you didn't have sex, it's NOT a one-night-stand.
  2. You're trying to smear O'Donnell but it really makes you look bad. Very bad. You constantly commented on how much she had ahd to drink yet you also say that you had around the same amount. Who's to say that you were performing well under par yourself?
  3. You have LESS respect for her for being a "born again virgin". Is that saying that you would have kept your mouth shut had she actually put out, or would you have put out just as salacious a piece if she had? And if nothing sexual happened, then how would there be any "nitty gritty" to get down to?
  4. She's not a "cougar" if she didn't mess with you on the basis of how much younger you were than her. She probably wasn't even fully aware of the age difference. Get over yourself.
  5. You make it a point to call attention to the fact that she hadn't "landscaped". I'm sorry, buddy, but not every woman feels compelled to have her nether regions resemble that of an adolescent girl. Again, that calls attention to what kind of mindset you most probably have.
  6. You appear to be so disgusted with her that she didn't give in to your advances while under the influence that you decide not to call her after. Quite immature and caddish, don't you think?
  7. Is it really any of your business whether or not O'Donnell and your roommate had sex when they were dating? Let me answer this for you, NO.
  8. Are you so ridiculously immature that somewhere in your mind you would think that because she did not put out for you and because you care little to nothing for her that she should not deserve to win the primary?

I could honestly lose my breath picking apart this joke but I think this about sums it up.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Is there a such thing as an "Honest Crook"?

This is the email I received from political director John Youngdahl from SEIU today:


Congressman Tom Perriello is a hero who needs your help.

He was a strong advocate for health care reform, even when others wavered. He tirelessly fights for working people, supporting measures to save jobs.

And that's why corporate front groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, who advocate outsourcing of American jobs and refuse to disclose where their money comes from, are targeting him and spending huge amounts on television for his opponent, Robert Hurt.

We can't allow these corporate front groups to buy this election.

Tom Perriello needs small voluntary contributions of $10, $20, or $50 to combat the influx of anonymous corporate cash flooding the airwaves: http://action.seiu.org/defendtom

The same corporate sham organizations that supports the outsourcing of American jobs also support candidates like Hurt who oppose unemployment benefits for Virginians looking for work.

As Thomasine Wilson, a a home care worker with SEIU in this district, said: "Times are tough. Dollars aren't stretching as far as they used to. I know so many in my hometown who are unemployed. Robert Hurt voted against helping those who are trying to find work."

Right now Tom Perriello is crisscrossing the state, meeting every voter he can. Every moment he spends fundraising to match these corporate groups is a moment he's not talking to the people who will decide this election.

Making a voluntary contribution not only allows him to spread his message across the state, it also frees up his time to talk to more voters in-person. Contribute now: http://action.seiu.org/defendtom

Jon Youngdahl, SEIU Political Director

Mr. Youndahl is kindly asking for SEIU supporters to donate to Tom Perriello's campaign. When I saw this, I was reminded of something I saw of Tom Perriello's a while back. Something like this:

Now, would anyone in their right mind donate to him? Or should we just give him credit for being an "honest crook"?