I Need Your Help

So two weeks from right now I’ll be on board the Carnival Fascination somewhere in the Atlantic between Jacksonville FL and the Bahamas. It should (and will) be a life of luxurious nothingness for 5 days and 4 nights where my biggest worry will be do I want the lobster or the filet mignon. I’ve been looking forward to this cruise since BEFORE we booked it, and the closer it gets, the more I’m looking forward to it.

But before I leave, I have a slight #firstworlddilemma.

My wife has given me a $30 cap on books to buy for my Kindle for the week.

So I’ve started using my Amazon Wish List as I see things I would like to pick up eventually, and now I pose the question to you, the reader:

Please use the following poll to tell me your Top 5 from this list. If you have any others you think I may enjoy, please feel free to let me know either in the comments here or through the various social media sites you know me from. You can click here to see the wish list directly, with links to the Amazon pages for the books in question.

[poll id=”2″]

Bachmann: “People are worried about… the rise of the Soviet Union”

Apparently Michelle Bachmann thinks it is currently 1947 or so, rather than 2011, as she outright said the quote in the title in an interview with the American Center for Law and Justice’s Jay Sekulow yesterday.

Here is the relevant 40 second or so clip from the 30 minute show, with Jay’s question and Bachmann’s response:

Michelle Bachmann: People are worried about… the rise of the Soviet Union

What I find interesting about this is that a) the Soviet Union died roughly 2 decades ago, before I was even out of elementary school. Bachmann was an adult by then and probably celebrated this event along with pretty much every other American of the era. In other words, it isn’t exactly unknown – nor should it be, for someone vying for the number 1 foreign policy job in the entire Nation.

But even more interesting is the absolute, utter SILENCE from “conservatives”. You know, the same people who gave one Barack Obama such hell about 4 years ago or so when he said that the US had 57 states.

Call me crazy, but I think knowing who our enemies are – or even could be – is a bit more important than ANY other issue. You cannot successfully defend our nation from “all enemies, foreign and domestic” if you have no clue that some of them only exists in your (clearly vivid) imagination these days.

Been A Fun Summer

Summer is nearly over, but it has been one of the better ones since my school days – if low key (which, as I get older, is good ;)).

It started out with me finally living with my wife again, after two months of separation. Not that we were “separated” in the marital sense – far from it. But we had been physically separated due to me starting a new job in Aiken and her still finishing her old one in Leesburg. Memorial Weekend, both sets of parents and both of my brothers came out and we moved our chunk of Leesburg to the apartment in Aiken that I had been living spartanly in for two months.

After everyone left, we began what has become an almost weekly occurence: We spent some time at a movie theater. Over the summer, we’ve seen 13 movies, and I’ve seen an additional 2 if you count April. On the first weekend of June, we began going out to the Monetta Drive in Theater, on the far side of Aiken County from us. There, you could see 2 movies for the price of one matinee virtually anywhere else, and typically at least one of the two is brand new that week, with the other usually being only a week or two old.

So far this summer, we’ve seen:

Hangover 2
XMen First Class
Kung Fu Panda 2
Super 8
Green Lantern
Bad Teacher
Transformers 3
Horrible Bosses
Harry Potter 7 Part 2 (twice, for Tonya)
Captain America (twice, for me)
Cowboys and Aliens
Rise of the Planet of the Apes

Yes, we’ve been trying to save the entire movie industry in America all by ourselves this summer. 😉

In the meantime, I’ve been working steadily and Tonya even got a new part time job in Aiken to get herself out of the house for a few hours a week and meet new people.

The official “end of summer” is typically Labor Day Weekend, but with the interns at work leaving last week and this week, and schools in the area starting up either tomorrow (in GA) or next week (in SC), it “feels” like the end of summer already. But I’m still going to have some fun. We’ve still got at least 2, possibly 3 or 4, movies we want to see this summer – Fright Night and Final Destination 5, two scary movies I will actually watch with Tonya. Maybe we’ll even find some really cool new (to us) restaurants in the area, like Takosushi – an area establishment that we REALLY like.

And Labor Day Weekend?

Jacksonville. Possibly as early as that Friday, where we can re-visit the Jacksonville Zoo, which was a pretty fun trip (that part of it at least) for us a couple of years ago, before heading out Saturday on the Carnival Fascination, bound for a week long cruise to the Bahamas and back. This will be our first cruise since April 2009, and as someone who has truly come to enjoy the islands – that is simply too long. 😀

So it has been a fun summer – and it aint over yet!

‘Obama must go’

Particularly over night, with news of S&P downgrading the US debt, I’ve heard quite a few Republicans chanting “Obama must go”, including Georgia’s State Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers (R-Woodstock).

This is a quick reply I just left on Senator Rogers’ FB wall:

Mr. Senator, Who would you replace him with? A Republican? Remember: It was Reagan and Bush I, and then again Bush II, who each DOUBLED the national debt. Obama has only raised it 50%. In the current debate, Democrats want to keep spending like there is no tomorrow – and so do Republicans, by not putting forth a plan with significant cuts to DEFENSE, Medicaid, and Medicare. As you are well aware, in Georgia, Education makes up ~ 56% of the budget and Transportation and Corrections combine for roughly 25% more. In Georgia, as you yourself saw in the last couple of years, you CANNOT make significant cuts without raising taxes unless you are willing to cut those three departments in some genuinely significant manner. At the Federal level, those three departments are Defense, Medicare, and Medicaid. Like in Georgia, Democrats AND Republicans at the Federal level have gotten us into this mess – and refuse to do the politically unpopular thing of getting us out of it. In Georgia, we propose eliminating the Department of Education altogether, and allowing genuine local control of education – thus returning several BILLION dollars to the locals and to the taxpayers, where it belongs. At the National level, we propose doing something that is gaining favor more and more even in Republican circles: Bring the troops HOME, and have a *genuine* Department of DEFENSE. As always, Senator, I thank you for your time and for at least acting like you’re listening to our points.

Indeed, take a gander at this report from CATO. Notice where the bulk of the increases happen? Hint: During the first red period (Reagan and Bush 1), the debt DOUBLED. ie, it increased by 100% or more. During the first prolonged blue period (Clinton) it was relatively stable, then during the second red period (Bush 2), the debt DOUBLED again. Bush 2 took 8 years to do what his dad and his dad’s boss had done in 12. Obama is simply following the lead of Reagan and the Bushes, and following GWB’s example of shaving a term off of the time needed to double the debt.

This is not at all to excuse Obama – he genuinely needs to go. But who to replace him with? Someone who history shows is JUST as likely, if not MORE likely, than he to FURTHER increase spending?

Or someone committed to slashing spending to where we can BEGIN to actually pay on the principal of this staggering $15T in debt?

Currently, there is ONE Presidential Candidate running on just such a platform: Gary Johnson.