Politics

Last week I had a typical yet interesting Facebook exchange with an Ecuadorian. I believe he spent some time in the US, and may have family there, but mostly he does one man shows around Ecuador. On Inauguration Day, he posted a simple "Welcome to Socialism". Comments were mixed, mine was rather tame in comparison to some - "Anyone who thinks Joe Biden is a socialist either knows nothing about him or doesn't understand the word." A few days later...

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From November of 2001 to July of 2015 I worked as a Senior Computer/Network Engineer for General Dynamics, assigned to the US Senate support contract. For the first seven of those years, before my wife's failing health led to me working more and more remotely, I worked out of an office in the basement of the Senate Russell building with about 40 or so other techs. We would be sent out on trouble tickets to work on computers, networks, printers,...

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I was thinking this morning in the shower (it's where I do all my best existential thinking) that for all the Republican whining and pearl-clutching about imagined election fraud and far-fetched conspiracies causing them to lose the White House, they have only themselves to blame. It seems to me they had at least two chances in 2020 to seize the initiative and take total control of the government. What saved our democracy? Their own incompetence and short-sightedness, with a dollop...

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As we get down to the last 15 days before the Election, more and more attention is being focused on the polls. It is a data-palooza for the analysts, with new algorithms being fed through tens of thousands of simulations every day, spewing out new results. For most Americans though, especially in light of the 2016 election, one question stands out more than the predictions of who will win - can we trust the polls? If I may quote the...

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It all began with the election of 1952, when a UNIVAC computer correctly predicted the outcome of the presidential election. Now if you look at the election results from that year, it seems like it would have been a no-brainer to predict. After all, Dwight Eisenhower beat Adlai Stevenson by over 6 million votes, and wiped the electoral map with him by winning 442-89. However, according to all of the pre-election polls, expectations ranged from a Stevenson landslide to a...

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I was idly scrolling through FaceBook the other day when I saw a post with what struck me as an uniquely American brag. A young woman proudly stated that she had just spent about two hours in a Target store brazenly unmasked, and had not been asked to leave. She saw this as some kind of personal victory, and a cry of freedom on the level of Mel Gibson in Braveheart. What a strange time we live in, when showing...

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Believe me, I have other things to do right now. I have to rehearse three public talks I'll be giving to crowds of several hundred people this week. There's a 2,000 word web article due for which I have so far composed only a title (which will probably change). We need to prep the house for a family Thanksgiving that may number as much as three out of four of our children and eight out of nine of our grandchildren,...

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I am an American. I was born in Annapolis Maryland, one of the oldest cities in the nation. I've lived and worked in her small towns, her big cities, and some of her beautiful rural lands. We own property in America, pay taxes, and are registered voters. I did tech support in the US Senate, where I shared an elevator and chatted with Ted Kennedy, helped Susan Collins with her Blackberry, talked with John McCain about his break with Jon...

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I've been thinking a lot lately about women's rights issues. It is not an easy thing to do for a person of the male persuasion, much like how a white person who grew up in a middle-class suburb really cannot understand completely what is it like to grow up black in a ghetto. But with all the things going on politically in the US that seem detrimental to women specifically, you can't help but wonder exactly what is going on with...

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As I watched Congressman Paul Ryan the other day, beaming his boyish grin while he talked with obvious joy about the benefits of stripping health insurance from the poor, sick, and elderly, I had a disturbing feeling of dejå vu. It is disturbing, because it seems to make some sense of recent events. It had been bothering me for a while now, this string of politicians actively seeking to punish the less fortunate. Ryan's insistence that cutting school lunches would...

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