Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Senate Voting on Rescue Plan Tomorrow

So, here we go again, let's see if we can get this thing through once and for all. Basically, what we just witnessed was the members of congress propose a bill that is essentially the exact same, with a few new provisions, as a way of posturing as re-election nears. Now, instead of letting their opponent throw them under the bus for watching the economy crumble and then thoughtlessly proposing a bailout plan, they can say "I fought to reject a bailout plan until it met my requirements to help the American people", or some garbage line like that. So, lets get real here, this is the same bill with more fluff, and I'm not falling for it. Neither should you...

Monday, September 29, 2008

House Rejects Bailout Bill

What the heck is going on here? The markets have plunged in lieu of the House rejecting the proposed $700 billion bailout plan. At first glance this seems to be all about selfish politicians watching their own backs trying to make sure they stay in office. They obviously don't care about the American people, they can say this is about being judicial and fair and not bailing out the richest of the rich, but we all no practically, the bailout is a necessity. These politicians saw that a mere 20% of American's favored the proposed bailout and realized it would serve as a serious black mark on their resume come time for re-election. Good job McCain, I can see you really made a difference suspending your campaign, you really went and hammered away in Washington, showing that valuable leadership you have. Oh wait, thats right, you did nothing, and now the latest Gallup poll shows you trail Obama by 8%. So message to all you republicans in the House of Reps, you better have a damn good proposal to replace the plan you just voted against, or we are going to be in serious trouble here, these are dangerous times to be playing political games. Very dangerous.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Movie Review: Miracle at St. Anna

Alright, let me just start by saying I'm a huge Spike Lee homer, I love everything he touches, along with Edward Burns, he is my favorite director. I'll then point out that RottenTomatoes currently has given it a 27%, which for those unfamiliar with the site, is abysmal. Well guess what, screw Rotten Tomatoes. I give this movie 5 Stars out of 5. First of all, the cast was impeccable, Derek Luke, Michael Ealy, Omar Benson Miller, and Laz Alonso gave stand out performances. Joseph Gordon Levitt, John Turturro, and John Leguizamo made appearances, as well. I don't want to get too deep into the plot because it has so many twists and story lines, but essentially the World War II epic focuses in on four black soldiers trapped in a small Italian village, surrounded by enemy German troops. Spike Lee masterfully directed the story and introduced us to a ton of unique characters, he finally gave a black perspective in a World War II film and he did it to near perfection. The movie was a bit long, coming in at 2.5 hours, but to me the time flew by. Go see this movie now, get the large popcorn and soda to last you through the movie, kick back and enjoy, this is film making at its core. This is the best movie I've seen all year, it pummels Batman, and that's the truth ruth.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Episode One - 4 Guys 3 Mics

Episode one is officially in the books, it may not be the best technical radio you've ever heard, but hopefully you'll enjoy it. Download/Listen here:


This edition of the show features an attempted show hijacking by Steve, some Obama/McCain talk, a couple campus news stories, and even some sports talk sprinkled in. Enjoy.

Oh, and here is a video diary of the night's events:

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

McCain Is Shook

John McCain is trying to back out of the debate Friday night. Not acceptable, says Barack Obama, and rightfully so. Here's the backstory, McCain is basically putting a halt on his campaign, "to focus" on the current economic crisis, which in my opinion is basically code for, I'm losing, I'm tired, and I'm at a loss for what to do next. So, put a halt to your campaign, fine, but don't try and weasel your way out of a debate and cost the American fence straddlers a chance to hear your views right next to Barack Obama's views and let them see who the better candidate is. McCain, the time is now, you've known it was coming, step up to the plate and take your beating like a man.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

If You Put a Gun To My Head

I would say yes the financial bailout is necessary. I know in my last blog about the economic crisis I tiptoed around my opinion, and I still firmly will say that my economic background is very limited and I only have an elementary understanding of what is actually happening right now. But, from what I have gathered the $700 billion bailout - largest since the Great Depression - has to happen. I understand that in theory we probably should make these greedy millionaires pay for their mistakes, but the repercussion of doing so seem to be too high, the stakes are too high to send messages right now. Sad as it is, those in the billionaire boys club are going to get off freely, but it has to happen, I'm not a socialist or anything like that, but you just have to be realistic sometimes and accept that this has to happen.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A Lesson in Subtle Racism

I was thinking today about the word "wigger" and for the most part, what I was wondering was, do people who use this word realize that they are being incredibly racist? For one thing, lets break the word down and ask ourselves what does wigger mean? Well, most people say "a white person who acts black". Before, I address that foolishness, let's literally look at the word at it's core: Wigger = White + N***er. Essentially, you are just people calling people a shortened up version of White N-Bomb. If you won't say the elongated version in a derogatory manner, don't say a shortened version, its that simple. Secondly, when people would counter and just say, oh its just a common term for people who try to act like they're black, but really aren't. Well, retard how do you act black, I often ask? By using language patterns that come off as uneducated? Do you realize what you are implicitly calling all black people, by saying things like that? Wake up to reality you idiots and dead this word.

Largest Financial Buyout Since Great Depression

Today, George Bush and his financial advisers have proposed a bill seeking that congress allow the government to buy $700 billion in bad mortgages. I wish I had more knowledge of the economy to say if this is a good or a bad thing, but I would like to take this opportunity to echo the sentiments of Ron Paul. While, I generally think Ron Paul is a clown and his radical supporters are delusional, I certainly agree on his slogan that American's need to gain a better understanding of the economy. When we, myself included, continue to let what other people tell us about the economic future and present of the nation stand as truth, we are doing ourselves a disservice. I know I am going to make a concerted effort, not just to continue to take economics courses in school, but to also read as much information about the economy as possible. I understand that this particular crisis is a once in a lifetime occurrence,but I do believe that the methodical meltdown of the U.S. economy is a problem and that if all citizens of the United States spent a little less time deciding who gets to enter the country and a little more time figuring out what the hell is going on with the finances and the trillion dollar deficit, we would be in better shape. This has nothing to do with which party you affiliate with, your socioeconomic background, your religion, or anything, it has to do with your fundamental responsibility as an American to pay attention.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hilarious E-Mail Going Around

My mom actually put me onto this:

I'm a little confused. Let me see if I have this straight.....

* If you grow up in Hawaii, raised by your grandparents, you're "exotic, different."

* Grow up in Alaska eating mooseburgers, a quintessential American story.

* If your name is Barack you're a radical, unpatriotic Muslim.

* Name your kids Willow, Trig, and Track, you're a maverick.

* Graduate from Harvard law School and you are unstable.

* Attend 5 different small colleges before graduating, you're well grounded.

* If you spend 3 years as a brilliant community organizer, become the first black President of the Harvard Law Review, create a voter registration drive that registers 150,000 new voters, spend 12 years as a Constitutional Law professor, spend 8 years as a State Senator representing a district with over 750,000 people, become chairman of the state Senate's Health and Human Services committee, spend 4 years in the United States Senate representing a state of 13 million people while sponsoring 131 bills and serving on the Foreign Affairs, Environment and Public Works and Veteran's Affairs committees, you don't have any real leadership experience.

* If your total resume is: local weather girl, 4 years on the city council and 6 years as the mayor of a town with less than 7,000 people, 20 months as the governor of a state with only 650,000 people, then you're qualified to become the country's second highest ranking executive.

* If you have been married to the same woman for 19 years while raising 2 beautiful daughters, all within Protestant churches, you're not a real Christian.

* If you cheated on your first wife with a rich heiress, and left your disfigured wife and married the heiress the next month, you're a Christian.

* If you teach responsible, age appropriate sex education, including the proper use of birth control, you are eroding the fiber of society.

* If, while governor, you staunchly advocate abstinence only, with no other option in sex education in your state's school system while your unwed teen daughter ends up pregnant, you're very responsible.

* If your wife is a Harvard graduate laywer who gave up a position in a prestigious law firm to work for the betterment of her inner city community, then gave that up to raise a family, your family's values don't represent America's.

* If you're husband is nicknamed "First Dude", with at least one DWI conviction and no college education, who didn't register to vote until age 25 and once was a member of a group that advocated the secession of Alaska from the USA, your family is extremely admirable.

OK, much clearer now.

Obama Seizes Momentum -- Again

As I predicted weeks ago, the Palin Express Train would soon run out of steam, and I give her and the McCain campaign all the credit in the world. They made a splash and rode the momentum for a long, long time, much longer than a Mitt Romney momentum would have taken then, but, unfortunately for them, Palin's time on top has come to an end as questions about her legitimacy as a candidate finally need to be answered and the McCain campaign is wisely putting her in the background more and more. Obama appears to have weathered the storm, as he still leads the electoral college polls, and while it is still early Obama is looking to capitalize on the momentum he has re-captured. Today, he came out swinging. (The following quotes, and more from today, can be found here)

"By favoring both greater regulation and less", Obama said, McCain "can't decide whether he's Barry Goldwater or Dennis Kucinich."

"On Monday, he said the economy was fundamentally sound -- and he was fundamentally wrong. On Tuesday, he said the government should stand by and allow one of the nation's largest insurers to collapse, putting the well-being of millions of Americans at risk. But by Wednesday, he changed his mind," Obama said.

"He said he would take on the ol' boy network, but he seemed to forget that he took seven of the biggest lobbyists in Washington from that network and put them in charge of your campaign," Obama said.

"Well, I have a message for Senator McCain: You can't just run away from your long-held views or your life-long record. You can't erase twenty-six years of support for the very policies and people who helped bring on this disaster with one week of rants."

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Why Does This Type Of News Only Surface From the McCain Camp?

Tsk. Tsk. I can't say for certain that John McCain or members of his campaign are directly responsible for the following story, and there is no way, even if they were (which I believe they were), there is no way they would ever let themselves be tied to something like this. Basically, what the Boston Globe is reporting, are your typical push-polling efforts. According to the article,
Jewish voters in Florida and at least one other state are being targeted by a telephone survey tying Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama to Palestinian causes, an advocacy group alleged Monday.

In other words, people are posing as pollster's but asking question that are designed to sway the voter for or against a candidate. Most often, as in this case, they are meant to pit you against a certain candidate. I suggest you read the article and then wonder why you never see any of this foolishness out of the Obama camp.

Dow Plummets: GOP Continues to Play Games

As I'm sure many of you know, the Dow was down 504 points yesterday after Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch went down, in other words, the stakes of this upcoming election went up. Enough of these little games the GOP has been playing, no more slandering Obama with lies and trying to paint him as an elitist candidate. Let's talk facts here for a minute. John McCain supports, and has supported for years, these hands-off policies that have allowed the economy to wreck itself, wake up, if there was more government regulation these clowns would have never been able to lock people into these loans in the first place and we might not be in the situation we're in to begin with. Not only that, but if you're going to call Obama an elitist, at least explain how your tax plan, which offers no tax cuts for paycheck to paycheck Americans would better serve the "non-elite", than an Obama plan that does. It's time to stop playing games and start being realistic about the situation. McCain is on some D'evils type stuff right now...

"I can't be held accountable, D'Evils beating me down, boo
Got me running with guys, making G's, telling lies that sound true"

The Best of Raphael Saadiq by DJ Uncle Q

This was originally uploaded by Peter Rosenberg, on his website, it's a Raphael Saadiq mix, done by Rosenberg's former mid-day co-host at WJFK. I wanted to post it here for my few readers, because I think they would truly enjoy it, perfect music to play in the car on a first date, or a special occasion with your chick. For those of you unfamiliar with Saadiq, he was formerly the lead singer of Tony! Toni! Toné!, and is now embarking on a solo career as a true neo-soul artist. His new album, "The Way I See It" just dropped today, so I haven't had a chance to check it out, but if it's anything like what we're used to, it should be dope. Enjoy this mix, courtesy of Daryl "Uncle Q" Francis, one of the realest guys to ever bless the mic in D.C. talk radio.


Monday, September 15, 2008

Movie Review: Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist

So, this movie comes out October 3rd and I'm pretty sure I'm not legally allowed to review it, but I'm going to anyway, because this thing was exactly what I hate about Hollywood. The movie stars Michael Cera (Juno, Superbad) and Kat Dennings (Charlie Bartlett, 40 Year Old Virgin), and the plot centered around these two indie rock scene high school seniors breaking free from past flings and seeing their own romance bud on a wild night, as they set forth to find where this mysteriously fleeting "Where's Fuzzy" concert is being held. Bla bla bla. We've seen all this before, and frankly I wasn't impressed then, and I sure as hell am not impressed now. Essentially, this was a complete rip off of "Juno", a movie that garnered a lot hype and won the Golden Globe's Best Picture award. Critics praised "Juno" for its great dialogue, witty script, and flawless acting job, but in my opinion, "Juno" was just more of the same garbage that Hollywood has been calling sophisticated fun for the past two or three years. Basically, its no longer funny nor cool to scream and shout and run into things, rather you have to be edgy and dry all the time. There's nothing wrong with a dry humor, I personally prefer it to Ben Stiller slapstick, but to just throw together something and expect me to buy into just because the in-the-know artsy film people say it's the new comedic genre for true film fans is a joke. I give this movie a solid C+, it was decent, but, there was nothing groundbreaking here, nothing original, it was basically a terrible blend of "Juno" and "Superbad". I just wasn't buying it. I like Kat Dennings, I like Michael Cera, I hated this movie. Save your money.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The American Dream?

As we well know, a state is the physical boundary that defines the legitimacy of a country, it is a legal entity defined by a sovereign government, a human population, and is recognized by other countries. A nation, though, is a congregation of people with a shared sense of belonging and community. It is directly tied to an emotional connectedness with others in your "nation", those others often share similarities in race, culture, ethnicity, or language. A nation is essentially an imagined community, that may or may not transcend state lines (i.e. Nation of Islam). Then, there is the nation-state, and while no country fits this definition in it's purest form, some countries, Sweden for example, are quite close. A nation-state would require an entire nation of people to be the only group within a state. America is not a nation-state in that sense of the word, but it prides itself on it's "melting pot" mantra. What makes America, in the eyes of most American's at least, the greatest country on earth? Most would answer, the ability to be anything you want to become, or rather, the idea of "The American Dream", that if you work hard you can become whatever it is you want to become in this world. Well, I've got news for you, the American dream is a crock. The fact that we continue to sell pipe dreams to these kids, that anyone can be a doctor or a lawyer, is only handicapping the mentality of people, who conclude their life with an inevitable disappointment after falling short of the lofty goals that American politicians and figureheads lay out in front of them when they are children. It's easy for arrogant college students to say that if people work hard, like they did, they can wind up in a college classroom well on their way to a successful life. Now, don't get me wrong, wealth is not always the best way to measure success in life, but, for the time being we will define a successful life as getting the job you desired, being adequately compensated for that job, and having a fair crack at achieving your dreams. Unfortunately, what many fail to realize is that when you, your parents, and your parents parents, dating all the way back to the first World War, were systematically and institutionally set up for failure, it is not so easy to pull yourself up from your bootstraps and become a success story. Sure, you can find examples of successful individuals who came from the worst situations you could imagine, but, the reason we know so much about them is because they are exceptions to the rule. Take a walk down Southeast, Washington, D.C. and talk to the people you see. Ask them, why they didn't just work hard like all of the American heroes we read about, ask a woman who works three manually taxing jobs to support a family why she didn't just work harder and become a dentist. Go ahead. See what kind of responses you get. You people need to wake up and realize what's going on in the world around you, stop basing your knowledge of everything in life on what you see in movies and base it around what actually happens in the real world. Stop telling kids that they can be whatever they want, instead tell them about the obstacles they will invariably face, and if you can, throw some knowledge their way about how to get around those obstacles. I could go on forever, about this, but you get the point.

Roger Ebert With Some Realk Talk

Roger Ebert, of the Chicago Sun-Times, kept it real funky today in an article about Sarah Palin, drawing comparisons of her to an American Idol contestant. Here is a link, and here are the highlights:

I think I might be able to explain some of Sara Palin's appeal. She's the "American Idol" candidate. Consider. What defines an "American Idol" finalist? They're good-looking, work well on television, have a sunny personality, are fierce competitors, and so talented, why, they're darned near the real thing. There's a reason "American Idol" gets such high ratings. People identify with the contestants. They think, Hey, that could almost be me up there on that show! My feeling is, I don't want to be up there. I want a vice president who is better than me, wiser, well-traveled, has met world leaders, who three months ago had an opinion on Iraq. Someone who doesn't repeat bald-faced lies about earmarks and the Bridge to Nowhere. Someone who doesn't appoint Alaskan politicians to "study" global warming, because, hello! It has been studied. The returns are convincing enough that John McCain and Barack Obama are darned near in agreement.

I would also want someone who didn't make a teeny little sneer when referring to "people who go to the Ivy League." When I was a teen I dreamed of going to Harvard, but my dad, an electrician, told me, "Boy, we don't have the money. Thank your lucky stars you were born in Urbana and can go to the University of Illinois right here in town." So I did, very happily. Although Palin gets laughs when she mentions the "elite" Ivy League, she sure did attend the heck out of college. Five schools in six years. What was that about?


I'd like to pile on Palin a bit more, as well. Why is that when conservatives and their pundits alike (Bill O'Reilly in specific), love to attack people like Lynn Spears when their daughters become impregnated, blaming the parents for terrible guidance, yet when Sarah Palin's daughter becomes pregnant it is a "family issue" that shouldn't be highlighted. I applaud Obama for not mentioning it, but that doesn't mean the media should refuse to, as well. Give me a break.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Honeymoon Will Soon End

As I blog this, I'm watching Palin give another solid speech and people are eating out of the palm of her hand, right now. The media is building her up big time, but isn't that what they do? They build you up and then they tear you down. Palin is going to have a huge fall and she's going to bring McCain down with her. Her record is now being examined, can she stand the scrutiny? That remains to be seen, she hasn't been tested yet, but there will be plenty of that, so patience is key with Obama. Keep hammering away at McCain as more of the same and let Biden take care of Palin when the time comes. And yes, that time will come, I'm so looking forward to it, too.

Update: Here is a perfect example of the unraveling Palin will eventually be victim to. Her total ineptitude and "deer in the headlights" look is as clear as it comes, in this ABC interview:

Just When You Think McCain Has Hit Rock Bottom, He Sinks Lower

Before, you watch this latest McCain advertisement, realize that I understand what happens in political campaigns. I understand that politicians often throw out blatant lies and slander their opponents in a no-holds-bar style candidacy. I know the rules of the game. At some point, though, you have to have some dignity, not only for your opponent, but for yourself and for your own credibility as a human being. The ad you are about to watch essentially claims that Obama for teaching kindergarten children about "sex before they learn how to read". Now, obviously McCain knows this to be a lie, in fact, the legislation he is referring to is one that teaches children in elementary school awareness about sexual predators and your general, watch out for strangers message. It's one thing to lie about Obama's proposed economic plan, which I have laid out and defended in numerous blogs, it's another to take this kind of a cheap shot. Anyway, it actually made me laugh out loud at how ridiculously obsessed over getting into office McCain is, he will literally stoop to any low point to beat Obama. Enjoy...

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Fantasy Trade Alert

Today I solidified my starting lineup by swinging a trade to land Antonio Gates, one of the premiere fantasy tight ends of the last decade. In exchange I sent my backup quarterback, Kurt Warner, and waiver wire fodder Hank Baskett, to a team sorely needing quarterback help after his starter, Tom Brady, was lost for the season and his backup, Vince Young, is out for 3 weeks. That's what being a fantasy owner is all about, you find a team that needs help sorely at a given position and then pry away the player from them you most need. I also picked up Chad Pennington to back-up Ben Roethlisberger. After week one, I'm 1-0 heading into a matchup against a team that failed to reach 60 points last week (as opposed to my 97 - second highest in the league), needless to say I'm feeling confident about my season.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Straight [B]alk Express

I'm reading the Washington Post this morning and I'm asking msyelf, why does John McCain continue to say he is on the straight talk express and then tell blatant lies about the difference between his and Obama's tax plan? Good article, if youre interested, but in a nutshell, if you are in the top 1% of earners in America and do not care about essentially donating money by way of tax, to a cause greater than yourself, then you would be wise to vote McCain. Under Obama's plan, there are going to be tax cuts for many lower-tier earners in America and increases for the wealthiest Americans, which many economists would argue decreases their ability, or incentive rather, to create jobs. It also, may be said that such increases limit the willingness of top earners to take risks in the economy, which directly correlates with the aforementioned hesitance to create new jobs. On the other hand, some economists, would also argue that the tax breaks for lower income Americans would result in less government borrowing, which would effectively lower the interest rate and generate more private investment. Basically, you will potentially see a lower budget deficit than you would under McCain's plan. Also, you simply need look no further than the Clinton administration which saw a mass growth in jobs, despite a plan extremely similar to Obama's, to realize that such a tax plan doesn't necessarily correlate with insular job growth. What is most frightening, and is keenly pointed to in the article, is that McCain once OPPOSED the Bush tax cuts and now is essentially proposing an identical plan. So, we ask ourselves why is McCain turning back on his "maverick" principals, that once made him an admirable politician? Perhaps, he realizes he is getting old and that this is his last chance to make a mark in politics and he knows the only way he can do that is to fight, scratch, claw, sleaze, and lie his way into office. I used to think highly of John McCain, but this is not the John McCain of 2000, and that is sad. I truly hope Barack Obama maintains his integrity and never falls victim to what McCain has recently succumbed to.

Friday, September 5, 2008

We Need Our Neighbors Help

Virginia is a battleground state this election, for the first time in a while a local state is going to actually have some major impact on the election. Obama needs to flip places like Virginia and Colorado in order to make up for points he will probably lose in Ohio and possibly even Florida. So can he take Virginia? Personally, I think he has a great shot in VA, there's a reason the last two governors have been democrats, VA is trending more and more liberal, especially in Northern Virginia. Just think what will happen if Obama can energize even a fraction of the black voters in places down south like Richmond. These are voters that have been largely untapped by the democratic party for years and Obama is going heavy at them right now. Anyway, just something to think about.

John McCain Just Doesn't Get It

Here's a summary of the speech if you missed it: Lie about the agenda of an Obama administration for the first half and talk about being a war hero for the second half. I admire what McCain has done for this country, up until about 2001 he was a great politician with real stances and agendas that help real people and he served the country admirably. Unfortunately now he is just another company line man out for self. I find it funny how he has completely ripped off Obama's call for change, unfortunately the rhetoric doesn't match the reality in his case. McCain has been offering us the same support of George W. Bush style politics for years now, the same style of politics that has sent America into a $9 trillion debt financing a war Obama spoke out against from day one. McCain is claiming Obama is going to raise taxes for working American's. That is a lie. Its a stone cold lie. Obama offers tax breaks, big ones at that, to those most in need, including seniors and impoverished working parents. Those making over $200,000/yr will see increased taxes, thats it. On top of that he is lambasting Obama for his stance on foreign oil, as he has, as has been well documented, supported more [offshore] drilling, as opposed to Obama's plan to wane the country off of its oil dependency. For years McCain and his colleagues have been voting against alternative energy solutions and offering huge tax breaks for oil companies, all of a sudden you're going to help us? Who are you kidding. John McCain, you are no maverick, you are just another mud-slinging, out for self politician. Period.