Oval Office Thunderdome: Santorum’s Tough Road

Former Pennsylvania Senator and current hard-right ideologue Rick Santorum will be stopping in Des Moines and Dubuque, Iowa, tomorrow to deliver a pair of speeches to conservative audiences. Iowa being what it is in the presidential nominating process, Santorum appears to have designs on the Republican nomination in 2012, something he and his staffers have only meekly denied. The problem for Rick Santorum is that, despite the GOP’s tendency towards embracing figures as far to the right as he is, capturing the nomination is far easier for candidates considered to be moderates. Continue reading “Oval Office Thunderdome: Santorum’s Tough Road”

Cocksuckers Ball: This Bill Stinks

The Senate Finance Committee continued debate on its healthcare reform bill today, voting down two amendments to add a public plan to the bill. But, that’s okay, because this bill should not be passed anyway. If liberal Democrats manage to find the courage to match their rhetoric, they will not vote for the bill on the floor until not only a public option is added, but also needed revisions are made. Continue reading “Cocksuckers Ball: This Bill Stinks”

Why Can’t Some People Read Ballots?

In today’s About New York column by Jim Dwyer of the New York Times, he tells the story of Fun Mae Eng, a resident of New York City who voted in her first presidential election in 1992. She carried a cheat sheet into the booth with her so she could recognize the characters in the English alphabet that made up Bill Clinton’s name, the candidate for whom she wished to vote. At the time, Ms. Eng could not read or speak English. The article went on to note the disenfranchisement of Chinese immigrants and Chinese-Americans in our nation’s past, and to note how far they have come, as evidenced by the current Democratic ticket in this city’s coming elections. The article also praised the efforts of community groups to press the city’s Board of Elections to create bilingual ballots in Chinese for areas of the city with large amounts of Chinese-speaking residents — a noble cause. Except for one thing. Why can’t people, including immigrants eligible to vote, read ballots? Continue reading “Why Can’t Some People Read Ballots?”

The Empty Balcony: Sunshine

Good science fiction films set in space are hard to come by. So many examples embrace the fiction part at the expense of the science that they lose a good deal of intelligence, and stupidity is death to sci-fi. Additionally, it’s a challenge to make space an interesting setting without working around so many of the realities that make space not only the most challenging environment there is for human existence, but also the most boring. There’s a reason, after all, that space shuttle launches are broadcast on C-SPAN. Continue reading “The Empty Balcony: Sunshine”

Hundreds of Thousands?!

How fraudulent was the recent Afghan election for president? In the province of Kandahar, home of incumbent president Hamid Karzai, 350,000 ballots were turned in to be counted, as reported by the New York Times. The problem is, only around 25,000 people actually voted there. Additionally, somewhere along the order of 800 fake polling sites were set up, existing on paper only, where all votes reported went to Karzai. The Electoral Complaints Commission, the organization tasked with monitoring the election, has stated, somewhat calmly considering the numbers involved, that it found “clear and convincing evidence of fraud” in the vote. In short, Hamid Karzai’s supporters have created hundreds of thousands of votes for their candidate out of thin air. Incredible. Continue reading “Hundreds of Thousands?!”

Shitty Movie Sundays: Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone

Along with the title of ‘Official Filmmaker of Shitty Movie Sundays,’ as mentioned in the review of Soldier, there are a few films vying for the title of King of the Shitty Movies. 1983’s Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone, directed by Lamont Johnson, is a strong contender. Riding the post Star Wars wave of 80s sci-fi, Spacehunter really is a sci-fi adventure, as the film’s hero, Peter Strauss’s Wolff, is forced to confront bizarre obstacle after bizarre obstacle in his quest to complete his mission: rescuing three marooned space hotties from the clutches of the evil Overdog (Michael Ironside), a ruthless dictator exercising sadistic control over the desert planet Terra XI somewhere off in the far reaches of space. Continue reading “Shitty Movie Sundays: Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone”

Plans? We Don’t Need No Stinking Plans!

Not exactly an impartial critic on the level of Walter Cronkite, longtime Washington Post columnist George Will has declared the war in Afghanistan unwinnable. He’s probably right. If victory for coalition forces in Afghanistan means the country will be at peace, ruled by a representative democracy from Kabul, and that both the Taliban and Al Qaeda will have been eliminated, then yes, the war is unwinnable. American and NATO forces cannot tame Afghanistan, and would be foolish to try. Continue reading “Plans? We Don’t Need No Stinking Plans!”