Archive of Articles for October, 2018

Powers Of Two

[ Posted Tuesday, October 16th, 2018 – 16:18 UTC ]

At a first glance, this may resemble a political column, but it's not. Instead, it is a digression to examine the awesome progression of exponential mathematics. No, really. I'm taking a slight break from the political world to opine on the powers of two.

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Elizabeth Warren Calls Trump's Bluff; Trump Breaks Million-Dollar Promise

[ Posted Monday, October 15th, 2018 – 17:08 UTC ]

It's hard to see today as anything short of the unofficial launch of the 2020 presidential contest, at least on the Democratic side of the aisle. That may be either exciting or frightening (depending on your view of endless political campaigning in general), but either way it's kind of hard to deny. Because Senator Elizabeth Warren -- again, unofficially -- just threw her hat in the presidential ring, in a big way. She did so by calling President Donald Trump's bluff, which has so far resulted in yet another Trump million-dollar promise being broken.

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Friday Talking Points -- "Civil" War

[ Posted Friday, October 12th, 2018 – 17:35 UTC ]

There's a debate going on right now among the chattering classes in Washington over whether Democrats should be "civil" or, alternatively, whether they should "kick" back at their opponents. No, really. The hilariousness of such a genteel debate seems to have escaped everyone engaging in it, apparently. Because it is pretty funny, when you consider the actual facts. Which show that Republicans completely abandoned civility altogether, right about the same time they started supporting Donald Trump -- and things have (if it's even possible) now gotten even worse in the midterm campaigns. So all they're really doing is attempting to hold Democrats to a standard they don't even pretend to hew to themselves anymore (after decades of being the moralizing, finger-wagging party, it bears mentioning).

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What Would A Bear Market Mean Politically?

[ Posted Thursday, October 11th, 2018 – 17:56 UTC ]

I am often (quite rightly) accused of writing nothing short of crassly political columns, where I examine events and trends seen through the lens of how they will affect the political landscape without much regard for their overall impact on society. Today is certainly going to qualify, I'll state that, right up front. Because after the Dow Jones Industrial Average has fallen almost 1,400 points in the past two days of trading, it's hard for a pundit not to wonder what it would mean if this trend continues.

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Mob Mentality

[ Posted Wednesday, October 10th, 2018 – 16:48 UTC ]

The word "mob" was first coined circa 1690 A.D., as a shortening of a Latin phrase: "mobile vulgus." The Latin translates roughly as "the moveable common people," although "movable" could have meant "fickle in their opinions" as much as it could have meant actual physical motion. The most succinct translation into English I've seen is "moveable party." This points out the political nature of the term's origins and its continued usage over the centuries.

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Good Riddance, Chief Wahoo

[ Posted Tuesday, October 9th, 2018 – 16:30 UTC ]

The Cleveland Indians' season is over. While this was a cause for sadness among their fans, there is also a good reason for everyone else to rejoice at the close of Cleveland's 2018 season. Because the 71-year tenure of the maniacally grinning and blatantly racist Cleveland mascot "Chief Wahoo" is also now at an end. Sort of. The Indians, starting next season, will not display this offensive logo any more on their uniforms -- however, they will still (sadly) continue to sell Chief Wahoo merchandise to their fans. A step forward, in other words, but not the true end of the road for what unquestionably has to be the most racist and offensive logo in modern professional sports.

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One Month To Go

[ Posted Monday, October 8th, 2018 – 17:05 UTC ]

Four weeks from tomorrow, America will vote in the 2018 midterm congressional elections. We're officially in the homestretch now, in other words. And even with all the recent political events, things stand pretty much how they have all year -- Democrats are still favored to take control of the House of Representatives, but Republicans are still favored to retain control of the Senate. The political pundits right now are focusing too tightly on possible effects of the Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court fight, but the bigger picture hasn't really shifted all that much.

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Friday Talking Points -- Kavanaugh Fight Finally Ends

[ Posted Friday, October 5th, 2018 – 16:46 UTC ]

Brett Kavanaugh is going to be confirmed to the Supreme Court tomorrow. That was the breaking news this afternoon, as Senators Jeff Flake, Susan Collins, and Democrat Joe Manchin all indicated that they're going to vote in favor of Kavanaugh's confirmation. Republican Lisa Murkowski had briefly given rise to hope on the Democratic side when she announced she'll be voting against confirmation, but as things stand now Vice President Mike Pence won't even be required to break a tie, because tomorrow (if every senator votes how they now say they will) the total will be 51 votes for confirmation to 49 against.

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Jeff Flake's Delusional Presidential Dreams

[ Posted Thursday, October 4th, 2018 – 17:10 UTC ]

It has long been said that when every single U.S. senator looks in the mirror each morning, he or she sees a U.S. president looking back at them. In reality, making the leap from the Senate to the White House is actually quite rare in modern American history -- before Barack Obama managed the feat in 2008, it hadn't happened since John F. Kennedy's win in 1960. But that doesn't really matter to the senators, as they all still see themselves as valid contenders for the presidency anyway, each and every morning.

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Jeff Bezos Does The Right Thing

[ Posted Wednesday, October 3rd, 2018 – 16:34 UTC ]

We could all use a dose of good news right about now, which is why it was heartening to hear that the leader of Amazon just announced he would be raising his employees' pay so that nobody working for his company will make less than $15 an hour. That's good news for hundreds of thousands of American families, and it deserves to be praised and celebrated. But the lion's share of the thanks really should go to a politician, because if Senator Bernie Sanders hadn't publicly shamed Amazon's Jeff Bezos, this probably never would have happened.

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