John Kerry has announced he will not be running for President. This is good news for everybody. The only reason Kerry became the 2004 Democrat nominee is that he charmed the states with early primaries despite being a weak candidate. The 2008 Presidential election seems likely to offer some legitimate talent and Kerry rightly recognized that he couldn’t compete. So, everyone already knew that Kerry wouldn’t be the next President. By making his announcement yesterday, he acknowledges that he is reluctantly yielding to reality. John, I’ll keep voting for you in Senate elections, but I am not going to use my 2008 Presidential vote to support the Peter Principle.
Sam Brownback on his own web site, brownback.com, in a letter announcing his intention to run for President:
I have decided, after much prayerful consideration, to consider a bid for the Republican nomination for the presidency. … Ours is an exceptional nation. A nation between two oceans made up of people from every nation on earth. A great nation united by our ideals. But we are a great nation because of our goodness. If we ever lose our goodness, we will surely lose our greatness.
And this is from the speech Brownback gave on Saturday (20-Jan-07) at Heritage Hall in Topeka, Kansas announcing his intention to run for President:
I am declaring today my candidacy for President of the United States. Ours is a great nation and I make one pledge to you: to use our greatness for goodness. We are a great nation because our greatness is built on the foundation of fundamental goodness. If ever we lose our goodness, we will surely lose our greatness.
Note that is not a string of excerpts put together – that is the actual first 4 sentences of his speech. I think what Sam ought to be praying for is a new PR and speechwriting staff.
Jon Stewart on The Daily Show talking about the State Of The Union Address:
As it does every year, this State Of The Union matches up two bitter rivals: the President of the United States; and words.
The story is familiar and fortunately, faithfully adapted. There are only a few times when you remember that the animals are animated due to very realistic animation and fantastic voice acting work. The spider hasn’t been dolled up but probably looks very much like a spider would, if you bothered to get close enough to one that it looked like it’s head was a foot across as it did on the movie screen at the local theater. But you aren’t completely creeped out because of Julia Roberts’s soothing voice work. My favorite work was done by Thomas Haden Church, voice of one of the crows. You can hear the desperation and single-mindedness of the crow confounded by the man in the corn field that doesn’t move. I laughed out loud – hard.
Rating: 7 (out of 10)
Here is Stephen Colbert explaining Cingular’s name change to AT&T.
Edit: Stupid Comedy Central pulled all their stuff off YouTube, so you’ll have to make do with this digital still until they come to their senses.
John Oliver on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart describing the current situation in Iraq:
I remember some time ago there was a coyote who was achieving remarkable success in the pursuit of a desert fowl. He would have caught that bird, but for one thing. At the last minute, he made a tragic mistake. He looked down. So yes, Jon, perhaps the President has run America off a cliff but what I’m saying now is “everybody, don’t look down”. Whereas people like you, Jon, people like you – all you have to offer is this [holds up sign that says “YIKES!”].
After excusing Prince’s tardiness to the Golden Globes due to traffic, Hugh Grant continued
It’s very easy to get caught in your car in this town.
The President is getting slammed for his new plan, announced Wednesday night in his televised address. I can’t believe I am saying this, but I think he might be right about this one.
I was against the Iraq war in the first place, and that’s when I believed their story about WMD. And I have been grinning from ear to ear since the Democrats took the Senate and the House away from the Republicans that were running amok. So why in the hell am I backing Bush on this one?
It seems obvious to me that to begin an immediate withdrawal now would make things worse for the US in the long run. The lack of a solid governing body in place would certainly lead to increased sectarian violence and more influence from outside forces like Iran and Syria and al-Qaeda. We can’t maintain the status quo either though, because we’ll just end up in the same place as if we started immediate withdrawal, but it will take longer.
So, is increasing the number of troops likely to solve the problem? No. But it also isn’t a guaranteed failure either. There is a chance that it might work. Everyone who says it is “too late” is partially correct. It is too late to get it right with the right number of troops at the beginning. But it isn’t too late to give more troops a try. Bush’s new plan of securing an area and sticking around, rather than moving on, does reverse the military’s (Rumsfeld’s) long-running mistake. And I do feel the US has an obligation to do our best to leave a stable Iraq – after all, we broke it so we should fix it.
The definition of winning and losing in Iraq has always been a little confusing to me. I suppose if we had gotten rid of Saddam, destroyed WMD, helped establish a new democratic government, and had our military out within 2 years, maybe that would have been a “win”. But today, winning has been redefined as not losing. Or, more specifically, not losing as badly as we might. We’ve already lost the public relations war – that happened as soon as some knucklehead put an American flag on the Saddam statue. We’ve lost respect and we’ve lost the implicit right to police the world as we see fit. And so far, we are losing Iraq to Islamic Fundamentalism; and considering that Iraq was not a candidate for Islamic Fundamentalism before we arrived (as much as Bush wants to believe it was), that means we are losing a battle of our own making. So, now, winning can only be defined as not losing that too.
Winning in Iraq is now getting out of Iraq without creating a terrorist haven, leaving it only moderately more dysfunctional than it was before. Our odds are not good, but our only chance is to try more troops. As Baker himself has said, we’ll know if that’s working within a few months. Let’s hope that it will.
Steve Jobs, discussing the new iPhone’s user interface called MultiTouch:
It works like magic, you don’t need a stylus, it’s far more accurate than any touch display that’s every been shipped, it ignores unintended touches (it’s super smart), you can do multi-finger gestures on it, and boy have we patented it!
The way LCD computer displays are being marketed these days makes me crazy. If you believe the hype, any LCD ever produced is automatically better than every CRT every produced and even the bargain basement LCD display is something that you’d be lucky to have in your home – because it is flat and flat is where it’s at. (Sorry, didn’t mean to rhyme.) Hype!! So before you run right out and buy a flat panel to replace that “old, clunky, tube” do yourself a favor and think about the purchase. Here are some things to look for when shopping.