U.S. strike on Iran is not the answer

Posted June 21, 2008 by jack rogers
Categories: people, politics

Tags: , , , ,

The Science Christian Monitor’s John Cooley seems like he’s right out of Hillary Clinton’s camp, which in the case of handling Iran is not necessarily a bad thing.

In a recent article on Iran, Cooley, who claims that two U.S. Senators have received information about a planned strike against Iran, which has been warned by the Bush Administration numerous times about nuclear proliferation, suggests an alternative plan — diplomacy.

Incidentally, the aforementioned senators, Diane Feinstein and Richard Lugar, deny plans of a U.S. strike.

Sounding a lot like Hillary Clinton, Cooley wants the U.S., Britain, France, Germany, China and Russia to join forces and work with Iran to create nuclear-free energy sources.

Check out Cooley’s insightful prose.  It makes a lot of sense.


John McCain picture worth a thousand words

Posted June 20, 2008 by jack rogers
Categories: humor, John McCain

Tags: , ,

I ran across this picture in a very fine article at Think Progress.  With the presidential election still over Rodney Dangerfield McCainfour months away, it appears that Barack Obama is a shoo-in for victory. 

If McCain should pull it out, though, you have to think we’ll be seeing this picture almost daily.

Ever see Rodney Dangerfield’s Back to School?  McCain looks just like the young  character, Thornton Melon, after he shows his poor grades to his father and claims he’s trying.  His father barks back, “Then try harder!” 

This McCain shot is an almost exact duplicate of the face the the child actor makes following his father’s stern admonishment.

I envision McCain making this face and gesture at every press conference.

It will make for great material on Saturday Night Live.  Of course,  I’ll never be able to enjoy Back to School quite as much, now that I’ve seen this, especially if McCain should triumph in November.


Relax, Obama is just politicking

Posted June 20, 2008 by jack rogers
Categories: Barack Obama, politics, Religion

Tags: , ,

It’s presidential election campaign season, so it’s time for all media to scrutinize every move made by Barack Obama and John McCain. why so frightening?

(I heard that Obama eats sausage links with his fingers and McCain puts his pants on right leg first, both facts bringing skepticism to their leadership abilities.)  Okay, that was a joke; I have to clarify this, because some people don’t know the difference in levity and genuine criticism.

Here is one example of not understanding simple polliticking by the Obama campaign.  The blog post links to a story about Obama’s people asking two women wearing Muslim headscarves to not sit behind a podium, where Obama was speaking.  Granted, this is not the best move Obama’s people have made, but in their defense, they were simply looking out for their candidate.

Obama has been called everything short of Osam Bin Laden’s twin by his detractors; this Muslim link just won’t go away.  So, what’s the most obvious, though maybe not the best, campaign strategy?  Distance Obama from Muslims.  Not that he’s afraid of the association.  Americans are afraid.

In another obvious piece of politicking, Obama called the two women personally and apologized.

Maybe if Americans were less fearful of the Muslim faith, this sort of politicking wouldn’t be necessary.

Colleges’ expectations conflict with No Child Left Behind

Posted June 19, 2008 by jack rogers
Categories: Education, politics

Tags: , , ,

A Legislative Analyst’s Office report indicates that college students in California are not entering By Rich ConleyCalifornia Community Colleges with the appropriate skills to complete college course work.

What makes this otherwise “old-news” story interesting is that the colleges say one of the biggest problems is that their expectations of the students and the expectations given students in high school don’t always match.

“Our review of CCC’s report and other studies finds a number of systemwide CCC policies and practices that are at odds with generally accepted strategies for improving basic skills education. For example: The CCC system does not clearly indicate to high school students how well their reading, writing, and math skills are aligned with CCC standards and expectations. . . .”

The great irony here is that President Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act, which forces public schools to get students to pass achievement tests based on state standards, does  not seem to jibe with what colleges believe students should know.

Seems the Bush administration left out a key ingredient to its recipe for successfully preparing students for higher education — communicating with the higher educators.

Bloggers battling the AP on fair use

Posted June 18, 2008 by jack rogers
Categories: blogging, journalism

Tags: ,

The Associated Press is upset that bloggers are using its articles or pieces of its articles.  So upset it the AP that it is meeting with one blogging company to set up guidelines for use of AP stories.

Maybe it’s just me, but this seems like a major victory for all bloggers, who are generally discounted as no-nothing hacks by the media. 

For more details, see this AP story.  Just be sure not to quote it directly.


Bush pursues drilling, contaminating environment

Posted June 18, 2008 by jack rogers
Categories: environment, politics

Tags: , , , , ,

President Bush will once again ask Congress to approve offshore oil drilling.  Bush and the Republicans continue their tired refrain that our enemies, China and Cuba, are reaping the benefits of drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.

Friend or Foe?Bush and his court jesters babble incessantly about how there are 21 billion barrels of untapped oil here in the states and that evil Democrats are robbing Americans of this bounty with a drilling ban.

Of course, the Republicans and the oil magnates don’t want people to know the truth — that these billions of barrels would create enough oil for approximately eight months of use.  (We consume roughly 89 million barrels of oil daily.)

It takes neither a brilliant scientist nor an award-winning economist to understand that the risk of contaminating our environment for seven months of a consumable product is a ludicrous notion. 

All it takes is a little common sense.  But if you read the first sentence of this post, we know common sense is not at work here.

Immigrant naked in sauna questions American democracy

Posted June 17, 2008 by jack rogers
Categories: culture, people, society

Tags: ,

Cleveland Plain Dealer columnist Phillip Morris tells a fascinating story about a Russian immigrant, who was arrested when he refused to stop taking saunas in the nude at a health club. 

Considering that the nudist is a 78-year-old man, the nudity itself isn’t what makes the story fascinating.  Now, if the column were about a 21-year-old Swedish bikini model. . . well, we better not go there.  What makes Morris’s article interesting is that the man, Lazar Balshen, who refused to put clothes on when told, is questioning the freedom that America provides.

This, too, might not seem shocking, until you learn that Balshen came here at 62, never worked a day in the states and has been receiving $677 in monthly Social Security since arriving.  Many of Morris’s readers were in an uproar over America’s generosity, far more than over Balsen’s nudity.

Anyone reading this space knows by now that I’m certainly in favor of civil rights and civil liberty.  The complaining Balshen, though, is taking things a little too far.