Things I’d Like Someone to Explain to Me

  1. Why do people jump all over John McCain for saying he doesn’t know much about economics?  It’s one of the few things I applaud him for.  I’d much rather have the President be candid with himself about his strengths and weaknesses than to fake it.  Haven’t we had enough of a President faking it?  After all, the head man’s primary job to my way of thinking is to choose good advisers.  What McCain needs to do is seek out the top economic minds in his party, meet with them, learn the basics of their philosophies, and choose one to be his Senior Advisor.  So let’s not run down this rabbit hole. There is plenty of fertile ground on which to criticize McCain without using this.  
  2. Why isn’t there some sort of outcry from someone besides me about the mileage reimbursement rate the IRS is using?  Am I the only one that drives in his job?  When gas was about $1.10/gallon, I was getting 30 cents a mile.  Gas has almost quadrupled, definitely more than tripled, and the allowance is only up to 50 and 1/2 cents.  This benefits big business in paying out less than value to travelling employees and the government by lowering the amount deductible on taxes.   Thanks again neo-cons.  
  3. If life begins at conception, and this is an important part of the Republican platform, why didn’t the Republicans pass a law entitling parents to claim a tax deduction for their little fetus if it was conceived in one year, but born the next?  Has no one at Cato thought of this?  
  4. Why would someone want to drive the same speed, side by side, with another vehicle on the interstate?
  5. That first guy that thought about making sausage.  How hungry was he?  (No doubt in my mind it was a he).  How smart was this guy?  If he had put his mind to something like physics how far advanced would mankind be now?
  6. That first guy that thought about making words and pictures and instant communication out of 1’s and 0’s.  How crazy smart was this guy?  (may have been a girl for all I know).  And how far back would mankind be if he’d put his mind to something like stretching his food budget a little further by using hooves and snouts?
  7. Why are there so many people out there that still send me emails that end with some variation of the line, send this to 5 people and you will (select one)__win money; __have good luck __have bad luck if you don’t; __save a little girl; __get a free meal at Applebees;  __save the world from liberals like travellinbaen?  And why haven’t these people bookmarked Snopes yet?
  8. Who starts chain emails, urban myths, and traffic jams?
  9. What program, major or minor have liberals passed at the Federal level without Republican help since the 1970’s?  I would argue none since Republicans had the Presidency from 1980 to 1992 and 2000-2008, a Republican majority in Congress from 1994-2006, and a filibuster proof Senate since 06.  The one chance the liberals had was during Clinton’s first two years and all they managed was to allow gays to stay in the military where they had always been.  So here’s what I’d like explained:  how can someone say the liberals or radicals are going to be so bad?  I’d like to see them pass something radical myself–Social Security, the Clean Water Act, OSHA, establishment of EPA, the Civil Rights Act…these radical plans turned out ok.  The Republicans sure didn’t abolish any of them when they were ascendant, though to be fair, a few did talk about getting rid of Social Security briefly.
  10. Math
Quote of the Day      “To be conscious that you are ignorant is a great step to knowledge.”  –Benjamin Disraeli
Bonus Quote of the Day      “A question that sometimes drives me hazy:  am I or others crazy?”     –Albert Einstein

About travellinbaen

I'm a 40 year old lawyer living in Ridgeland, Mississippi. I'm several years and a couple hundred miles removed from most of my old running buddies so I started the blog to provide an outlet for many of the observations and ideas that used to be the subjects of our late night/happy hour/halftime conversations and arguments.
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2 Responses to Things I’d Like Someone to Explain to Me

  1. Kurt says:

    I’m not sure I understand where you’re coming from.
    Are you saying you approve of McCain’s choice of Phil Gramm, author of the Enron loophole, to be his economics guru?
    Are you saying that you approve of McCain showing up at a rally sponsored by oil companies in Texas while Congress is debating the offshore drilling moratorium?

  2. Hi Kurt. First let me say you are looking well. Also, I appreciate your taking the time to read my post and to comment. Your comment, showing a complete misunderstanding of my post, is a good reminder for me that I must always work to improve my feeble writing skills.

    My point is simply that we should not expect politicians to be all knowing. They are not. If they would be more candid about the areas they are strong or weak in, it would better serve the voting public. In the McCain exampled I used, I believe that in knowing of his ignorance in economics, Congress would be on notice to grill his appointees to Treasury, the Fed, etc., harder than normal as they would know that their decisions would be highly likely to be accepted by a McCain White House without question.

    I did not intend in my post to address McCain showing up at an oil company sponsored rally, to approve of Phil Gramm as a guru, or to approve any other McCain policy. As a matter of fact, I generally am opposed to McCain and neo-con policies, and I am supporting Obama for President. I think Obama supporters would do better to attack McCain’s policy positions rather than the admittedly shocking soundbite about his ignorance. I was moved to include that in this post after listening to a radio host repeatedly reference it while I was listening on a recent road trip.

    Thanks for the opportunity to clarify.

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