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Friday Talking Points [141] -- Rahm's Exit Contest Winner Announced

[ Posted Friday, October 1st, 2010 – 14:46 PDT ]

I will begin today's column by drying a tear as we all wish Rahm Emanuel a fond farewell. Actually, I am lying. I am drying no tears for Rahm because I am crying no tears at his leaving. Chicago's loss is the White House's gain, as far as I'm concerned.

A quick review is in order here, and then we'll announce a contest winner from a long-ago-and-probably-forgotten contest in a previous Friday Talking Points article, where I opened the field of betting as to when, exactly, Rahm Emanuel would be leaving.

Way back in FTP [110], we were already more than ready to see Rahm make an exit. This was in response to the news breaking about Rahm comparing Lefties to "[sexual expletive deleted] [slur on developmentally-challenged people deleted]," as you'll all remember. Back then, I wrote (while awarding the Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week to Rahm):


Here is my message to the White House in response, and in no uncertain terms. Democrats didn't show up in Massachusetts and Virginia and New Jersey for a reason. They are not enthusiastic about voting this year in general. This is why. When you treat the things the voters actually care deeply about like dirt, and bargain them away in cavalier fashion, then Democrats stay home on election day. And when you don't even realizing how insulting you are being towards a big constituency that helped get you elected -- much less feel like apologizing for it -- then that sound you just heard was your chances in the midterm elections being flushed down the toilet. And spinning in the bowl as well is your chance of getting your legislative agenda passed, both swirling down into the watery vortex.

I closed this segment with the following heartfelt plea:

Please, Mr. Emanuel, please, please... don't you feel it's time to "spend more time with your family," for all our sakes? You were sold to us as "Rahmbo" -- the guy who would muscle Obama's ambitious agenda through Congress. Instead, you are the first one to wave a white flag in any negotiations, and the first one to throw what Democratic voters actually want into the trash. Wouldn't it be so nice to spend a whole bunch of time with your family right about now? Please?

That was in early February of this year. Then in March, in FTP [114], I ran a contest and subtitled the article "When Will Rahm Go? Place Your Bets!" In it, I wrote:

This sort of "mistakes were made, but not by me" legacy-polishing, it should be noted, is usually done as a politician is leaving the stage. Which is enough of a reason for us to optimistically look into the future, here. So we are going to open the betting for when Rahm Emanuel will exit the White House. Or, to be more accurate, when he will announce his exit. Because we're just going to assume (for the fun of it) that if Rahmbo's already covering his tracks by attempting to cast history over-favorably toward himself, then his exit can't be all that far ahead. To be followed, as is usual, by signing a book contract worth at least seven figures. Rahm was said to be interested it running for mayor of Chicago at one point, but whatever excuse he ultimately uses, we're taking bets on the actual date Rahm announces he is leaving.

And, to open the betting, I predicted (somewhat optimistically, I must admit) that Rahm would exit "the second Friday following the signing ceremony for the health reform bills." Many readers responded to the contest, with a wide range of guesses, from the "yesterday wouldn't be soon enough" school of thought, to the "never" line of thinking. Obviously, both of these extremes proved to be wrong.

But three people got close enough to declare them winners. [Note: all winners commented on the Huffington Post when the article originally ran.] Two runners-up are hereby awarded, one each for guessing a bit too short and a bit too long. The first of these goes to "murphy80" for guessing "by the 4th of July (2010)." And the second goes to "standard," who guessed March 18, 2011. Runners-up receive exactly nothing, other than bragging rights in the comments section.

But our big winner, who is to be commended not only for his [I am assuming gender here, apologies if I guessed wrong] prediction -- but also for getting into the spirit of the whole "using quatloos to bet" thing by his use of the word "Thrall" in his entry -- as he made a two-part bet:

100 Quatloos that he's out by July.

500 Quatloos that he's out by September.

And then added some extra-snarky commentary for good measure:

Kirk was dealing with an alien world of perverse, socialpathic gamblers. Obama is dealing with something much more sinister: Washington politics.

Figuring he lost the first bet, and called the second one within one day, we're going to award a total of 400 Quatloos to... (drumroll, please)... "TakeSake"! Well done! Your quatloos are... um... in the mail, yeah, that's it... but feel free to exercise your bragging rights in the comments in the meantime.

OK, enough of this unseemly snarkiness... oh, wait, this whole column is all about unseemly snarkiness, whatever am I saying? Heh. Moving right along, then....

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

Elizabeth Warren was in the news in two minor stories this week which deserve at least a mention. Warren's replacement as the chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel will be current Senator Ted Kaufman. Kaufman is the guy who was appointed seat-warmer for Joe Biden's Senate seat, on the condition that he wouldn't run for it this year. But he's been a surprisingly strong voice for average Americans in the Senate ever since -- perhaps because he didn't have to worry about an upcoming election, who knows? Anyway, Kaufman replacing Warren is good news indeed, if he keeps the fire in the belly he's shown for the past couple of years.

Warren herself made the news as well, by speaking to a group of bankers. Now, this speaking gig was set up before her appointment to set up the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was announced, but rather than cancel she took the opportunity to speak to the folks she's going to be regulating, and offered them an olive branch of sorts, by telling them to discount the caricature of her that her opponents painted, in an effort to calm the waters a bit.

But the real Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week award goes to Senator Frank Lautenberg and Representative Barbara Lee, for the legislation they've just introduced.

In a story with a remarkable amount of spin, the end of federal dollars going to abstinence-only teen sex ed was gloriously announced. Except that, when you look at the fine print, it really isn't the end of federal funds going for these worthless programs, Salon reports. These abstinence-only programs were a darling of the Right under President George W. Bush, despite being proven over and over again that they were absolutely worthless when measured scientifically. But science wasn't Bush's strong suit, to say the least, and the faith-based programs were given millions upon millions of taxpayer dollars. I should point out that I'm using "faith-based" here not to suggest any religious connotation, but because you had to just "have faith" that the programs were worth funding -- because every single piece of solid research showed that they had absolutely no effect on teens' behavior.

Which leads us to Lautenberg and Lee, who announced this week that they were introducing the "Repealing Ineffective and Incomplete Abstinence-Only Program Funding Act" to finally end this enormous waste of money. Both for doing so and for the sledgehammer-esque title of their legislation, Senator Lautenberg and Representative Lee are both hereby awarded a Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week this week. This is how Democrats are supposed to act in Congress, all others should take note.

[Congratulate Senator Frank Lautenberg on his Senate contact page, and Representative Barbara Lee on her House contact page, to let them know you appreciate their efforts. And contact your own representatives and tell them to support this bill, as well!]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

I'm going to give the White House a break this week, solely because to do otherwise would be to diminish the "...and there was much rejoicing" nature of the announcement that we won't have Rahm Emanuel to kick around any more.

But seriously, guys, do you really think five weeks before an election is the best time to pick up that well-worn stick and bash Democratic voters once again? Those of a cynical nature are saying that President Obama's and Vice President Biden's remarks early in the week about the "whining" from the Left are merely setting up a finger-pointing exercise for the aftermath of the midterm election -- the White House shifting blame, in other words, beforehand.

But I choose to think of it as Rahm's swansong, myself. Because if ever a political tactic seemed to have Rahm's fingerprints all over it, this was indeed it. All the White House really accomplished was to come off as being fairly whiny themselves, if truth be told.

But, again, we're all just so happy about the prospect of the White House being a Rahm-free zone that we're giving them a break this week.

Instead, we are giving the unquestioned champion of the Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week category one more MDDOTW award to add to his already-extensive collection. In other words, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has just won his nineteenth MDDOTW award.

Reid just set a horrendous precedent in the Senate. He struck a deal with Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, on the subject of Obama nominees to Senate-confirmable positions. What Reid got out of the deal: 54 of the 164 nominees currently awaiting a vote in the Senate got confirmed. What McConnell got out of the deal: Reid's promise to officially keep the Senate "in session" until after the election. This is a dodge where every few days a Senator "presides" over a mostly-empty chamber, and gavels the Senate open for a few minutes. As I said, to get around the definition of a "recess," this will happen every few days.

What it really means is that President Obama won't be able to "recess appoint" any of those other 110 nominees in the meantime. Yes, you heard that right, Harry Reid will be taking away the power of the president to break the Senate logjam.

This isn't an unprecedented thing, I should point out. The Senate has played this game before -- but always by a Senate majority from the other party as the president (Democrats successfully blocked Bush from recess appointments this way a few years ago). But, as far as I know, this is the first time it will happen when the same party controls both the Senate and the White House.

Now, it can be argued that getting the 54 nominees confirmed was progress of a sort. Which is, on the face of it, true. But Reid has allowed McConnell to escalate the situation to a power struggle between the branches that really didn't need to happen. If Reid hadn't cut this deal, Obama could very easily have appointed those 54 -- or, indeed, all 164 -- nominees, and then made it a honking big political issue in the election. Now, Obama doesn't even have the choice to take this route.

Thanks a lot, Harry.

For allowing himself to be used as McConnell's puppet, Harry Reid is hereby awarded this week's Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week.

[Contact Senator Harry Reid on his Senate contact page, to let him know what you think of his actions.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 141 (10/1/10)

Normally, this is where I offer up advice to Democrats on how to speak about the issues of the week. This week, I was looking forward to cataloguing the recent congressional votes which would help Democrats out on the campaign trail.

But, funny thing, they didn't give me much of anything to work with. Democrats punted on pretty much everything of any importance -- except a bill to keep the government running because not a single appropriations bill has yet been passed (the federal budget is supposed to be in place by today, which is the start of a new fiscal year on the federal calendar).

Ending Bush tax cuts on millionaires and billionaires? After the election, they tell us. Contentious votes which show which side of things Republicans are standing on -- on all kinds of issues -- and what Democrats are tenaciously fighting for? Nope, none of that. Maybe in the lame duck session, they tell us. Passing even one budget bill? Nah, not going to happen.

Sigh.

Which leads me to strongly urge anyone within easy travelling distance of Washington D.C. to show up for tomorrow's One Nation Working Together march and rally by a group of people angry about the economy from the Left. Of course, this rally will not get the extensive media coverage previous rallies have this year, because the words "Tea Party" are not connected with it, and on general principles because it comes from the Left (so much for the "liberal media" myth, eh?). But media indifference is no excuse -- get out there tomorrow and make your voices heard!

Maybe some Democrats will even listen, who knows?

In the same vein, and in lieu of our regular talking points, I'd like to offer up instead today an open letter to the man who will soon replace Rahm Emanuel. Just to start things off on a good foot, as it were.

 

To incoming White House Chief of Staff Pete Rouse:

Mr. Rouse, I write to you in an effort to bridge a gap which has grown very deep in the past two years. I speak of the gap between some of the most fervent of the Democratic base of voters and the Obama White House. Or, if you prefer, the gap between the "professional Left" and the White House.

This gap, to be blunt, did not need to exist. Perhaps it would exist now in any case, due to the White House's actions, but it would not be as wide nor as deep as it is currently without the attitude the previous holder of your job showed towards a large number of people who got Barack Obama elected. I write to you today in an effort to heal this rift, because by exhibiting a little diplomacy on your part, much of the bad feelings we've become so used to can hopefully be avoided in the future.

To begin with, please do not continue the previous White House policy of insulting, belittling, and disparaging your supporters in a callous and offhanded way, pretty much every chance that arises. Calling into question our intelligence, our motives, and even whether we're on drugs or not is simply not a good way to reach out. Even without the gratuitous profanity, I might add.

A little outreach goes a long way with most everyone. The "whining" from the Left (as the White House has been calling it) would be a lot less loud and frequent if we felt our concerns were at least being listened to by the Obama administration. We do not overestimate our leverage, I might add -- we know we're not going to get everything we ask for on the schedule we would like to see. All we are really asking for is the "seat at the table" that Obama seemed to promise during his campaign. We want to be heard, in other words, even if in practical terms it does not show any immediate result.

Given the nature of politics today, and the Congress we'll have to work with, we realize that we're going to have to compromise on any number of things in order to advance an agenda even incrementally. But we feel if our voices are being heard in the mix, perhaps the White House and Democratic congressional leaders won't be so quick to bargain away our priorities, often getting nothing at all in return. Instead of immediately caving on strong politically-powerful positions, perhaps with a show of outside support we can help both President Obama and folks like Harry Reid strengthen their position before the debate even begins. Up until now, this has been the point where our concerns and ideas have been discarded without any consideration whatsoever -- which is exactly why the "enthusiasm gap" exists today. Democratic voters see their votes being taken for granted, and then when it comes time to legislate, the most popular ideas among those voters is thrown under a bus. Why would anyone expect us to be enthused after such treatment? Would you be?

We know we're not going to get everything we ask for, in other words, but it would be nice to occasionally get something we asked for, instead of a perpetual cold shoulder.

What it all boils down to is that we would like to see President Obama fight. That's really our only demand. We don't even care, at this point, what he gets out there and fights for. Pick an issue, any issue. And then stake out a position, and start issuing veto threats, if that's what it takes. Let Congress know which parts of the idea the White House requires in the bill, and then stand up for and defend your positions.

That's really all we're asking for. Oh, and please stop the sewer of profanity and personal attacks, too. That would be a big step in the right direction, I have to admit.

Over time, the memory of Rahm Emanuel will fade, and by then hopefully we can start working together, instead of taking potshots at each other from afar.

Thank you for listening, and good luck in your new job.

 

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Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground
Cross-posted at: The Huffington Post

 

-- Chris Weigant

 

28 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [141] -- Rahm's Exit Contest Winner Announced”

  1. [1] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Congrats, Michale!

    Chris- Had not heard about the "Repealing Ineffective and Incomplete Abstinence-Only Program Funding Act". This is great. One of the great progressive positions that never gets taken advantage of as much as it should is that science should be a critical test and basis for legislation.

    And I don't mean conservative think tank science (where you can get scientists to say just about anything for enough money). I mean rigorously tested science within the scientific community.

    I know she didn't win the MIDOTW award, but I'd like to give a quick shoutout to Ohio's Mary Jo Kilpatrick for passing this piece of legislation prohibiting paid-off medical debt from affecting credit scores:

    http://www.dispatchpolitics.com/live/content/local_news/stories/2010/09/30/copy/kilroys-debt-reporting-bill-passes.html?adsec=politics&sid=101

    Also, this time of year might be a good time to update the MIDOTW tallies and repost. I'd like to know who they are so I can help send some funds their way (rather than give to the Democratic party, DSCC, or the like).

    My favorite out-of-stater is Russ Feingold and, in-state, I really like Mary Jo Kilpatrick, Marcy Kaptur, and Lee Fisher. And Justin Coussoule who is running against Mr. Tan. We've really got some great progressives here in Ohio.

    But there might be some folks I'm not thinking of who could benefit such as Frank Lautenberg and Barbara Lee. Just a thought. Seems to me like the way to send the right message: we'll support you if you'll fight!

    Cheers
    -David

    p.s. The Reds are in the playoffs so anything is possible!

    p.s.s. Here's an interesting experiment. Go to Google. Click on News at the top. Enter the phrase:

    "Repealing Ineffective and Incomplete Abstinence-Only Program Funding Act"

    I got 3 hits. And one was Chris'. It's almost non-existent in the news. Still believe in the "liberal media," Michale? :)

    (Given it may be early so I'll keep an eye on this to see if it gets picked up. But I'd of thought this would make at least some of the major news outlets.)

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I give the new chief of staff about 72 hours, give or take, before everyone on the left gets on his case for something or other.

    Wait a second ... that may be a bit off. Look how fast they turned against their latest saviour, Elizabeth Warren. I'll give the new guy just through Sunday.

    Sigh, indeed ...

  3. [3] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    Congrats, Michale!

    WhaaDiDoNow??? :D

    I got 3 hits. And one was Chris'. It's almost non-existent in the news. Still believe in the "liberal media," Michale? :)

    Yer Google must be broken... :D

    http://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&channel=s&hl=en&source=hp&q=%22Repealing+Ineffective+and+Incomplete+Abstinence-Only+Program+Funding+Act%22&btnG=Google+Search

    As I have mentioned before, the media seems to have caught on and have FINALLY become critical of Obama and the Left...

    I guess they finally realized that this country is a center-right country. :D

    Michale.....

  4. [4] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yer Google must be broken... :D

    DOH!!!

    I neglected to read your "Go to Goggle Click on News" message..

    My Bust...

    Michale.....

  5. [5] 
    akadjian wrote:

    WhaaDiDoNow??? :D

    You won the Rahm Emanuel Exit contest! Go back and read the post.

    Well played, my friend!
    -David

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK, ONE of us is not reading the same post... :D

    Michale.....

  7. [7] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Ah, my bad. Saw quatloos and figured it was you. Because I don't usually read Chris on that other website he posts on, I am often unaware of folks who don't come over here.

    Deduct 100 quatloos from my account. :(

    -David

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    hehehehehe

    I thought I was freakin' out... :D

    Michale.....

  9. [9] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    ...conservative think tank science (where you can get scientists to say just about anything for enough money).

    That would include leftie Global Warming/Climate Change (or whatever you guys are calling it these days) scientists, correct?

    Speaking of saving the planet... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZCWFBJ1nwA&list=QL&feature=BF ...what's wrong with that picture.

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    That would include leftie Global Warming/Climate Change (or whatever you guys are calling it these days) scientists, correct?

    Ooooooooo Don't get me started!!! :D

    Michale.....

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    By the bi...

    JAGS WIN!!!!! Beat their Division Nemesis, the Colts!! :D

    59-Yard Field Goal with 4 seconds left!!

    Career Longest for Josh Scobee...

    3rd Longest Game Winning Field Goal in NFL history!!!

    And it was a helluva game!!! :D

    OK, got that out of my system.... :D

    Michale.....

  12. [12] 
    akadjian wrote:

    That would include leftie Global Warming/Climate Change (or whatever you guys are calling it these days) scientists, correct?

    I was thinking more lefty evolution.

    And lefty "round earth orbiting the sun" theory.

    And lefty immunization.

    And lefty fluoride in the drinking water. (Clearly, this is a Communist mind control plot.)

    And lefty test tube babies.

    And lefty stem cell research.

    And the worst offender! Einstein's theory of relativity. Read about this new liberal plot: http://www.conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Theory_of_Relativity&oldid=15341

    Let's face it. Science is an evil liberal plot!

    ;)
    -David

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    Let's face it. Science is an evil liberal plot!

    On some issues (most notably the afore mentioned Global Warming/Climate Change/Global Climate Disruption/Whatever) you are totally correct..

    If you have to constantly relabel something to try and sell it, that is not science... If you have to cherry pick your conclusions, that is not science.

    However, just to clarify, science in and of itself is not 'evil'.. It is how it is used that makes that determination.

    Michale.....

  14. [14] 
    akadjian wrote:

    If you have to cherry pick your conclusions, that is not science.

    Yes! We should totally consider both the arguments of the round earthers and flat earthers as equally legitimate! :)

    Now I know that many conservatives believe that going green is going to place too many costs on industry. Which is why they're disputing global warming. That is, the vast majority of the scientific world has reviewed the evidence and believes global warming is a valid theory. It's not as much of a scientific dispute as it is a political dispute.

    I think this is a mistake. I think this is a great opportunity. An opportunity to develop new green technologies and to lead the world. And to market and sell these technologies around the world.

    Me personally, I'd rather support this innovation and prepare for the future. If the automotive industry had done this, they wouldn't have needed a bailout (Ford, for example, as opposed to GM).

    The alternative, I believe, is to fall behind the rest of the world. In some ways, we already have due to politics - but let's not fall further behind.

    I guess you could see this as "liberal", but I see solid conservative and business arguments for green energy as well.

    If you want to rip on Al Gore, I'm all for that. But there's some really good business arguments for green energy. Also, it would help us rely less on the Mideast for oil so there's a good national security argument.

    What d'ya think?

    Cheers
    -David

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    Yes! We should totally consider both the arguments of the round earthers and flat earthers as equally legitimate! :)

    How did you get there from here??

    Now I know that many conservatives believe that going green is going to place too many costs on industry. Which is why they're disputing global warming. That is, the vast majority of the scientific world has reviewed the evidence and believes global warming is a valid theory. It's not as much of a scientific dispute as it is a political dispute.

    There is as much scientific evidence that disputes the Global Warming theory than there is that supports the theory.

    But, at least there is some agreement between you and I.

    We both agree that it is ONLY a theory. Not scientific fact.

    Me personally, I'd rather support this innovation and prepare for the future. If the automotive industry had done this, they wouldn't have needed a bailout (Ford, for example, as opposed to GM).

    I'll be more inclined to support the theory if those that preach it ad nasuem would do less making money off of it and more actually combating the alleged problem.

    What's better??

    Spending 300 million to talk about Global Warming??

    Or spending 300 million to equip 30,000 homes with complete solar power systems that not only allow them to get off the electrical grid, but actually allows them to FEED excess power TO the grid.

    Those who think logically and rationally about green issues know that the latter is the better way to go.

    Those who pursue the green agenda to line their own pockets with billions think the former is just peachy keen wonderful...

    If you want to rip on Al Gore, I'm all for that.

    Too easy... :D I never kick a man when he is on his way down and out... :D

    But there's some really good business arguments for green energy. Also, it would help us rely less on the Mideast for oil so there's a good national security argument.

    I completely agree.. And if THAT was the agenda behind the current Environmental radicals, then they would have no stronger an ally than I...

    But it has become clear that THAT is not the agenda of Obama and the Democrats.

    Michale.....

  16. [16] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    We both agree that [man-made climate change] is ONLY a theory. Not scientific fact.

    the same is also true of evolution and relativity. the statement of a scientific viewpoint as hypothesis, theory or law has very little bearing on its actual likelihood of being factually accurate. stating that something is "only" a theory is a comment on the politics of the theory, not its relative accuracy.

    "Lay people often misinterpret the language used by scientists. And for that reason, they sometimes draw the wrong conclusions as to what the scientific terms mean.

    "Three such terms that are often used interchangeably are "scientific law," "hypothesis," and "theory."

    "In layman’s terms, if something is said to be “just a theory,” it usually means that it is a mere guess, or is unproved. It might even lack credibility. But in scientific terms, a theory implies that something has been proven and is generally accepted as being true."

    http://www.wilstar.com/theories.htm

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    NYpoet,

    That was very interesting reading. Thanx for that.

    Given that information, I have to alter my previous misconceptions.

    Global Warming/Climate Change/Global Climactic Disruption/Human Caused Global Warming Yet The Planet Is Cooling/Whatever/Etc/Etc/Etc is a hypothesis, not a theory.

    There is as much scientific evidence to dispute the hypothesis than there is to support it.

    And, if you throw out that "peer-reviewed" nonsense at me, I will taunt you a second time... :D

    Michale.....

  18. [18] 
    akadjian wrote:

    But it has become clear that THAT is not the agenda of Obama and the Democrats.

    I'm not sure I know what you're referring to when you say the "agenda of the Obama administration". Seems to me like growing the green energy business is the agenda of the Obama administration.

    We both agree that it is ONLY a theory. Not scientific fact.

    I think we have different ideas about what this means.

    You seem to be contrasting theory with fact to question the validity of a scientific theory.

    A theory in the scientific sense is an explanatory model based on facts (empirical evidence and research) designed to explain another fact.

    For example, evolution is a theory that takes facts about DNA and observable evidence about species and comes up with a model for how species "evolved".

    A fact in the science world is "the sky is blue". A scientific theory explains why the sky is blue based on what we know about the properties of light and the prism properties of the atmosphere.

    Global warming is a scientific theory that looks at facts like observable increases in CO2, warming average temperatures, and attempts to explain and correlate these through the greenhouse effect. The greenhouse effect is the same theory that explains why your car gets so hot on a sunny day with the windows closed.

    Glass acts like CO2. It will let sunlight in, but not heat out. These are provable facts. I can cover a fish tank with a layer of CO2 and it will have a similar effect to that of glass.

    Is global warming a theory? Yes. So is evolution, relativity, Newtonian physics of planetary motion, quantum theory, etc.

    So I would put global warming in the same category as evolution in terms of how much belief I put in it - both are theories with a wide body of empirical evidence to support them that are widely accepted in the scientific community.

    This is apolitical.

    It has nothing to do w/ environmental radicals. In fact, it has nothing to do with politics. It's a scientific theory.

    Where it gets political is, should we have policies in place to try and prevent it or slow it?

    Spending 300 million to talk about Global Warming?

    Did a quick Internet search to figure out what you're referring to and think this is in reference to Al Gore's advocacy initiative.

    Don't know enough about the goals of this program to say one way or another, but its not a government initiative. It's a private initiative. I like your idea of a pilot program for solar. But at the end of the day, its Mr. Gore's program and not a government program.

    Cheers
    David

  19. [19] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    There is as much scientific evidence to dispute the [insert revolving lay term here] than [you meant "as"] there is to support it.

    taunt all you want, but that's simply not the case.

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    taunt all you want, but that's simply not the case.

    With respect, it IS the case..

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_scientists_opposing_the_mainstream_scientific_assessment_of_global_warming

    This issue boils down to one thing and one thing only.

    "My 'priests' (scientists) are right and your 'priests' (scientists) are wrong.."

    The science is in dispute.

    That is the ONLY factual statement relevant to the issue of Global Warming/Climate Change/Global Climactic Disruption/Human Caused Global Warming Yet The Planet Is Cooling/Whatever/Etc/Etc/Etc...

    I'll be off the grid for a while..

    http://staugustine.com/news/local-news/2010-10-06/hastings-woman-escapes-fiery-crash-i-95

    Just didn't want to think I am abandoning ya'all for no good reason.

    Michale.....

  21. [21] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Michale,

    With respect, the only real dispute that exists among scientists is a matter of the degree of human responsibility, not whether or not there is any. Further, it is due to incompleteness of evidence, not any credible evidence to the contrary, and certainly not an equal amount of evidence to the contrary. Even the most stringent minority of doubters in the scientific community would admit as much. You said,

    "There is as much scientific evidence to dispute the hypothesis than there is to support it."

    Without reference to the political implication, the substance of that statement is simply false.

  22. [22] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Michale-
    Sorry to hear that about your wife! That's seriously scary.

    I hope it really is just minor injuries like the article said.

    Prayers are with you and her and hope to see you back here soon!
    -David

  23. [23] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    oh wow, i hadn't read that link. i'm glad she's alright, and i hope you are too, michale.

    ~joshua

  24. [24] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale -

    That is a terrifying article. I hope your wife soon recovers from the accident, and have to say from the scanty details in the article, she sounds like she kept her head in a crisis admirably well.

    Our thoughts here at CW.com will be with you, and her.

    -CW

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    Thanx to all..

    Channel 4 News in Jacksonville did a follow up interview with my wife.

    http://www.news4jax.com/video/25310023/index.html

    She was really lucky to walk away from it.

    But she's feeling a lot better. She's like one big bruise right now, but nothing broken. Just a few minor cuts.

    So, I should be back to my usual PIDA (pain in da ass) self here in the next day or so. :D

    Thanx again to all. Ya'all are really great.. :D

    Michale.....

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    she sounds like she kept her head in a crisis admirably well.

    I think the only mistake she made was trying to get to the side of the road too fast.. At the speed she was going (75mph +/-) she hit the grass going way too fast. The fact that there was a slight downward incline in the grass didn't help matters much either.

    Of course, it's easy in hindsight to point that out...

    You are correct though that, once the vehicle rolled, she had enough of her wits about her to get out of Dodge.. According to the trooper on scene, the flames were 10-15 feet high before Fire Units responded.

    This is the second time my wife has rolled an SUV. First time, about 9 years ago, she got clipped by a big truck.

    So, the lesson here is...

    NO MORE SUVs FOR THE WIFE.. :D

    Michale.....

  27. [27] 
    akadjian wrote:

    So, the lesson here is ... NO MORE SUVs FOR THE WIFE.. :D

    You're cracking jokes so I know everything's ok. That's good to hear.

    And yeah, get back here so we can return to being mortal enemies :)!

    -David

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    You're cracking jokes so I know everything's ok. That's good to hear.

    Yea, she's coming around.. :D It could have been so much worse, I am just so thankful. We celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary next March and we'll both be around to celebrate. Yea, I know.. Amazing that she has put up with me for 30 years, eh? :D

    And yeah, get back here so we can return to being mortal enemies :)!

    hehehehehe Does make things more interesting...

    Michale.....

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