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Articles: politics: 2010 November

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Saturday, 2010 November 20 - 8:18 pm
It's hard to be a Michigan football fan sometimes. It's bad enough having to watch the team lose. But the most tiring thing is explaining to people why we're losing. No one cares about how young the team is, how we've been riddled with injuries, how we're still recovering from coaching transitions... no, they just care about MOAR WINS KTHXBAI.

I find it's similarly hard to be a user of Apple products. I'm tired of defending Apple against people who say things like "Apple should cut all of its prices in half" or "Apple should let other PC makers license their OS", as if Apple had no interest in actually making profits. I'm tired of explaining how the iPhone is not doomed even if Android is enjoying some success.

And it's hard to be a Democrat. It is exhausting to refute Tea Party nonsense all the time. I'm astounded that I have to explain to people all the ways that Sarah Palin is wrong about things. And I think I no longer have the energy to tell people that global warming is a reality even if it was cold today.

But yet I am all of these things: Michigan fan, Apple user, Democrat. I am a Michigan fan even if they lose, because that's what it means to be a true fan. I use Apple products even when the company is being torn apart for overblown reports of iPhone antenna issues, because Apple simply makes better products. And I'm a Democrat even when Tea Party activists seem to be grabbing all the headlines, because there are principles that I believe in.

Michigan lost to Wisconsin today. Most people expected that outcome, but during the game, the Internets were full of comments along the lines of "OMG FIRE RICHROD NOW". But still, as a fan, I persevere.
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Posted by Ken in: politicssportstechwatch

The Tea Party Paradox
Wednesday, 2010 November 3 - 11:37 am
Well, I'm sure most of you have heard the election news by now... the Republicans take the House, Democrats retain the Senate; Rand Paul wins but Christine O'Donnell loses. In my home district, Renee Ellmers defeated incumbent Bob Etheridge running on an embarrassing anti-Muslim campaign. So yeah, that all happened and we're going to have to live with it.

Something's been bothering me lately about the Tea Party candidates, and I've finally put my finger on it. I call it the Tea Party Paradox. Here's the flowchart; click on the image below for a larger version.

Tea Party Paradox

Here's the crux of it, highlighted by the blue box: if lowering taxes is part of the solution to lowering the budget deficit, then why are we worried that higher deficits will lead to higher taxes? That logic just doesn't add up.

The good news is, having Republicans in the House has probably increased Barack Obama's chances of being re-elected in 2012. For the past two years, there's been no one to blame for everything except the Democrats, and so it's no surprise that they got clobbered yesterday. Over the next two years, Republicans will actually have to create policy and not just politics, and I'm betting it won't be pretty.
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Posted by Ken in: politics

Tuesday, 2010 November 2 - 11:44 am
It's mid-term election day, and the Democrats are widely expected to get clobbered. I'm in a heavily Republican district, and the U.S. Senate race in North Carolina has been looking pretty lopsided... but still, I vote because I care. My one vote might not make much of a difference, but it counts just as much as any other. That's the wonderful thing about the election process.

For voters who are still on the fence, struggling to get through these tough economic times and feeling angry at politicians: please try to remember who got us into this situation.

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Posted by Ken in: politics

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