Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A Woman Republican President?

There's going to be a woman President soon. The only questions involved in it are who it will be and what side will she be on.

The Republicans are well positioned to accomplish it. The Democrats, not so much.

On the Democratic side, the only woman on the track is Hilary Clinton. She has good name recognition but a lot of it and especially on the conservative side of the voter spectrum is bad. Also, no matter how you dress up her many skills and accomplishments, a strong case can be made that everything she's gotten is because of the length of her popular husband's coat tails.

The Republicans have a lot of women on deck. Even though many of them have turned out to be weak sisters, it's clear Republicans are willing to vote, in large numbers, for women.

There are two Republican women I think have an especially good chance of capturing the Presidency, Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina and ex Senator Kay Baley Hutchison, of Texas. Both are capable of mounting a credible campaign.

Kay Baley is an old war horse. She knows all the movers and shakers inside the beltway. She would be acceptable to the old boys that run the party. She's no longer a Senator and would be free to devote the next two years to the run.

Nikki Haley is the newly elected Governor of South Carolina. She's young, attractive and intelligent. She's a woman of color, coming out of the immigrant, minority community and yet models strong conservative values, socially and fiscally.

The smart thing to do would be to get both of them going now, with well funded and professionally staffed campaigns and let them push all of the other contenders down for the count, then let them fight it out between themselves. Whoever comes out on top should get the Presidential slot on the Republican ticket and the other given the Vice Presidential nod at the convention in 2012. That way both of those on the ticket would have had a lot of exposure and campaign experience. One would be from the deep South and the other from the West, strongholds of Republicanism. Both would be acceptable to conservatives in the Midwest.

It would be better if Governor Haley became the Presidential candidate, as the dynamic, fresh face of the party and Kay Baley was the elder stateswoman by her side, kind of a Bush/Cheney arrangement but either way would work.

I don't think they'll do it. I still think the Republicans will field a Southerner for President and a Westerner for Vice President, both men. They are going to miss a good opportunity.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Fuck Them

I haven't said that much about Fukushima Daichi. I have two things to say.

First, if you read between the lines, it's very likely that the US Navy 7th Fleet, within hours after the disaster, offered to back up a super carrier to the plant, power up the pumps and give the technicians time to safely cool down the reactors into a non critical state. This would have allowed the situation to be dealt with, even though it was still serious, in a more organized manner and over a longer period of time. 

The only reason I can think of that the Japanese refused this help is because of their long standing antipathy to American nuclear ships harboring in their ports and perhaps a misguided desire to be seen as able to deal with the disaster on their own and independent of American help. If any part of this scenario is true, then fuck them, they endangered the whole World for no reason.

The second thing is that nuclear power generation was originally entered into, by the major nations, in order to produce the plutonium necessary to make atomic weapons. That's all they cared about. They never bothered to do the work or incur the expense to make nuclear power safe. It could have been done.  Fuck them.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

And It's Good For You

You gotta love this. Ann Coulter, on her blog, tells us how large doses of radiation, like you might get if a nuclear reactor core somewhere in your neighborhood melted down, promotes better health for those in the vicinity.

I hope Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann got this message. This is exactly the kind of good, patriotic news they like to get out to their people.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Democracy Doesn't Work

Citizens of democracies initially are happy just not to be oppressed and taken advantage of. Eventually they learn that they can vote themselves whatever benefits that they want. Free education, liberal social welfare benefits, health care, whatever they want. Cool. Then the Governments go broke. Eventually a dictatorship takes over and cracks down. Society is back in balance and spending is under control but so are the people. They are no longer free. It doesn't matter. The majority welcome it.

America is getting close to hat point. Democracy isn't a functional form of government. It never was. It never will be.

In the end, people crave order and function over freedom. I'm not being snotty about this. I 'm just like everyone else. We're all Nazis at heart, including me.

It's still a free country today. Go out and enjoy yourself while you can. It won't last. I guarantee it.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Tuna Melt

Wingnuts want to build a lot more nuclear reactors. I got no problem with that. They need to be shielded and able to shut down in such a manner that they can withstand at least 9 Richter scale earthquakes and tsunamis like happened in Japan last week.

The San Onofre plant is about 20 miles from my house. It's already operated ten years past its designed shutdown date. The reason is because there is no way they can shut it down and stabilize the site in a safe manner. I'm pretty sure that any kind of major seismic event in the area, much less a monster tidal wave would totally fuck up a big chunk of the SoCal coast, radioactivity wise. I doubt it would do the Pacific Ocean that much good either.

What Do You Replace Planned Parenthood With?

The wingnuts want to defund Planned Parenthood. For many years, I volunteered at a local free Clinic that was partnered with Planned Parenthood. 99% of what they did was screenings and treatment for cervical cancer and STDs, contraception and prenatal care and nutrition. It was also set up to provide indigent medical care to those that fell through the cracks and had no other general health care options.

Yeah, they provided abortion referrals. The abortions were through an outpatient clinic, not free but very affordably priced. So what?

I like Planned Parenthood.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Oil Boom

The price of oil is up, way up, on fears about political instability in the Middle East. Buy oil if you want. It may go up more. Probably will.

In reality, I haven't heard that in fact, the social and political unrest in the Arab World has affected oil production at all. In fact, big oil producers are selling existing excess inventory into the steepening price curve.

Around here, gasoline is getting close to $4 a gallon. I assume that similar price increases are taking place around the World. This is going, at least in the short and medium term, to depress petroleum consumption. There is already a World wide glut of oil stocks left over from the last crude oil price surge fueled by rampant speculation that ended precipitously 2 years ago.

In the long term, the price of oil has nowhere to go but up. This current round of price increases will end badly though and pretty soon, I think. Might be time for that last big road trip in the motor home soon.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Travels With Charley

A lot of people are saying a lot of things about Charley Sheen and his notorious lifestyle.

I never really had the kind of resources to devote to the pursuit as Charley but I like to think I  did my fair share.

I think I can tell you exactly how he feels. Sometimes when I would come to, pull myself together and revue recent events, sure, I was a little humiliated by thoughts of the things I had done. I felt bad at the way I had treated family, friends and lovers. It never occurred to me that I was scraping bottom and needed to change my ways.

I always figured I needed a little more practice, get in a little bit deeper, extend my control and at some point I would become perfectly acclimated to the life. I would reach a nirvana of depravity, with no more mornings after.

I only ever quit when I got so old and used up that the turnaround time was eating up most of my life and the turnaround time was no fun at all. If Charley ever reforms, it'll be for the same reasons. Charley may never reform. He may just die. Nirvana. I envy him.