Archive for the ‘politics’ Category


Palin’s ignorant fruit fly remark

October 24, 2008

Some of my best friends are drosophila researchers.  There have been lots of them over the years because fruit flies are such a valuable subject for genetics research.

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Links below added on Oct 25, 2008

UNC health care weblog

The stem cell blog (search for drosophila)

Clinical correlations (search for drosophila)

University of Pennsylvania


Molecular biology blog

The Trail (Washington Post)

Cutting through the crap


The smartest guys in the room crushed the world economy

October 24, 2008

Market fundamentalism, the economic theory propagated by Milton Friedman and the University of Chicago School of Economics – and most recently Alan Greenspan – is coming to a violent economic end. Friedman and his followers were seen as economic gods by the neoconservatives, whose members include Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz and Dick Cheney.

Here are some links to blogs that you might find interesting.

Sense and Nonsense

Bill Moyers interviewing George Soros

Naomi Klein, Milton Friedman and Arnold Schwarzenegger

The end of free market fundamentalism

Why market fundamentalism has failed


Palin should auction clothes on E-Bay

October 23, 2008

OK, so a lot of money was spent for clothes from companies that don’t have stores in Paducah.

The fast answer from the McCain campaign was that they would be donated to charity.

Really?  Let’s see it.  On e-Bay where everybody can see.

They could let Rush have the honors of organizing it, he apparently is familiar with how it works.

If Britney can do it, why can’t Sarah?

I bet that $150,000 worth of clothes could go for twice that amount on e-Bay.

But it needs to close before the election, just in case McCain and Palin are not elected.  The value is likely to decrease as the post-mortem analysis drags her VP selection through the mud-encrusted wringer.


What’s wrong with being Muslim anyway?

October 19, 2008

Colin Powell was interviewed on Meet The Press this morning.  He spoke to Tom Brokaw about the damages of the negative messages coming from the McCain campaign.  He posed the right question at one point: ‘Why shouldn’t a 7 year old Muslim child be able to think about being president someday?’

Considering the way the McCain campaign has been carrying on its negative attacks, Powell said he will be voting for Barack Obama.  As voters we can send a strong message to politicians of both parties – vote against negative election tactics this year. The passion of an election is no reason to tear down our principles.


Wealth redistribution in America

October 19, 2008

Barack Obama told Joe (the Plumber) Wurzelbacher that his tax policy would “spread the wealth around”.  As a result Joe’s become famous world wide.  The McCain campaign has exploited Obama’s gaffe and the media created a human interest story that didn’t quite pan out.  I don’t know if I feel sorry for Joe, even though some of his personal problems have been exposed.  It seems he has liked being in the spotlight.

As Bob Herbert wrote in the New York Times, there are much more pressing stories to tell than Joe’s.

Wealth redistribution through tax policy sounds pretty bad, but wealth redistribution has always been a key part of the American dream.  I have to believe that trickle down Reaganomics is another form of wealth redistribution that used tax policies as part of the scheme.

The people that Mr. Herbert wrote about and the thousands of others like them are victims of a different kind of wealth redistribution.  Wherever there are economic bubbles (as there was in housing in this decade) there is wealth redistribution.  Some people get away with more than their fair share and others are left with the pain of their losses.  The mortgage practices of this decade were a massive wealth redistribution scheme with at least some amount of government support and a number of winners but many deeply damaged victims.

We have seen a widening gap between the haves and have-nots in America over the last few decades.  Some call it the shrinking middle class.  To me it seems like it is probably a clear case of wealth redistribution and its a topic worth exploring in a lot more depth.  The question is what has government’s role been in this decline.  We don’t want to become a welfare state, but figuring out what a fair distribution of wealth is a much more difficult question than what is being portrayed in the campaign now.  Its the main reason I don’t believe in unregulated economic systems – it doesn’t look like they work for most of us – whether we are the Joes of the world or the elderly and recently homeless.


Dont vote for mudslingers

October 17, 2008

I’m an independent voter from California, but I tend to side more often with Democrats than Republicans.  Neither are perfect, that’s for sure. If you get enough of either side together – like during a convention – its pretty obnoxious.   Not a lot of problem solving going on when there is so much chest thumping to do.

And name calling.

The name calling really bugs me and that’s one of the reasons I tend to like Democratic candidates more than Republican candidates.  Republicans can’t seem to leave that one alone.  Heck, they systematically do it, as they are doing now with the “Obama is a terrorist” robocalls.  That is not at all OK with me and my guess is that it’s not at all OK with many others either.

I think the journey is just as important as the goal – and the journey is pretty ugly right now.  I don’t think it’s OK to make viscous lies about your opponent in order to win. The end does not justify the means.

Please join me in voting against ridiculous, fabricated, personal attacks.

One side says the other pals with terrorists.  That doesn’t seem very likely.

The other side says the other is erratic.  That’s probably an overstatement.

Comparing the two, it seems to me the friend of terrorist charge is the more ugly and irresponsibe.  So, I’m voting for Obama – unless his campaign comes up with something more ugly and stupid than what the Republicans are doing.

Send a message to politicians this year. Cut the crap.