Saturday, September 26, 2009

The GOP Nominee in 2012 Ought To Be...
Let me preface this with the note that I am considering geography and battlegrounds only; that is, not necessarily the record of the person in question. With that said, the only logical choice for the 2012 GOP nomination for president is...Tim Pawlenty. The GOP must do everything in its power to avoid classification as a regional, Southern, party. In addition, to defeat Obama, they need someone with no real ties to former President G. W. Bush. It'd be moronic for the president to blame 12 years on 'W,' but he'll try if you let him. They need to put the Midwest in play while holding the South. They need someone who doesn't have a history of angering the base. A person who is relatively young will take away perhaps Obama's biggest unacknowledged advantage from 2008, age. Pawlenty is the governor of Minnesota, and this executive experience will likely contrast favorably with Obama, who is already vulnerable on this point and overall. And the only logical pick for VP is...Michael Steele. The former Lt. Gov. of Maryland, and now the GOP national party chairman, Steele puts Virginia back in GOP hands, and perhaps even makes Obama spend resources holding Maryland. Steele is also black, and this fact alone can neutralize certain attacks from Obama. Steele may not add black votes, but he does plant the idea in the minds of voters that the GOP understands the meaning of Obama's election, and the prospect of Steele as a future president will allay any concerns that this progress is less than real. Let's see if they take my advice.

Friday, September 25, 2009

5 Ways To Tell You Are A Vainglorious Extrovert

5. You have a burning urge to be a Wikipedia editor.

4. Does the word 'karaoke' mean anything to you?

3. Trivial Pursuit. Full volume. No mercy.

2. You would totally pull a 'Commodores'--start a band and write songs to impress girls.

1. You own a blog.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

5 Thoughts When Realizing One Has an E-mail From Dr. Bill Frist, MD

5. "Are you gonna watch the 'Grey's Anatomy' premiere tonight?"

4. "I'm not really prepared to go to Africa right now, sir."

3. "No 'nuclear option'? No votes for you, come back, 4 years!"

2. "How did you get this e-mail? What does the GOP know, and when did they know it?"

1. "Do you listen to 'Please Come To Boston' like a thousand times a day?"

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

5 Random, Perhaps Disconnected Thoughts for Today

5. There are a lot of good teams in the National League this year, most of whom (grammar error?) will be playing golf in about a week and a half.

4. The creators of "Grey's Anatomy" must have thought, "Hey, let's do a serious version of 'Scrubs'!" And it works.

3. So glad to find out that small, yet significant piece of information. Will I do anything about it?

2. I doubt catching the garter means anything, but if it does, I'm not complaining.

1. Someone should make a movie of John 13-17. It makes me cry like a baby.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

A Political Rant

I see far too many Christians over-simplifying the moral imperatives of the gospel of Jesus as they attempt to apply it to the political process. They are still operating as though the stereotypes presented by political actors (especially by opponents of those various actors) are valid. Frankly, to be specific, I see too many Christians defaulting to a kind of socialism, (or at least a statism) because A) some 'progressives' make a big fuss about caring for the poor (and their myriad opponents don't, for various reasons), B) they ignore, or fail to see that state-directed 'compassion' involves coercion which, by its very nature, denies individuals their God-given status as free moral agents, or C) they are just plain ignorant. Under (C), a certain sanctified stupidity prevails, whereby intent is the only measure of a policy's desirability. Most forms of Protestant soteriology actually encourage this. Because of "the finished work of Christ," [this means you, Francis S.] we need not actually be perfect; we need only be in union with the One who is perfect. He doesn't see us, it goes, he sees us clothed in the righteousness of Christ. It seems to me very difficult--but not impossible--to pursue excellence in any matter, whether political, personal, or otherwise, when the moral value--or usefulness-- of any act is predetermined good by benevolent intent at the outset. The philosophical word for this escapes me, but it should be evident after a moment's reflection that intent cannot be the only measure. Thomas Sowell wrote a book called The Vision of the Anointed making this basic point: that entire generations of leaders have attempted social engineering on a massive scale to combat every problem one can imagine without being called to account when those initiatives fail. Furthermore, he says, skeptics of such initiatives are not granted the assumption of benevolent intent. I may be tempted to dismiss this as conservative complaining couched in five-dollar words but for the fact that we do seem to be truncating many policy debates along the lines of intent. And that's why asking "Why?", "To What End?" and "What is/was the result?" is more important than the "What." If skeptics say that the healthcare plan under consideration, for example, will force private health insurers out of the market, limit free choice, and be too costly, its proponents ought to prove why those objections aren't correct or pertinent. The style of politics in fashion (today and forever, apparently) is: 1. Assert the unproven, and 2. Impugn the opposition. If you "Bork" somebody today, when you die, the newspapers and such will call you a "liberal lion" or a "conservative icon." It's been a long time since I read anything like, "He wasn't much of a partisan, but he consistently asked important questions, and raised the level of debate, while disputing with charity and grace." When Christians don't understand politics, and don't want to try, they issue a bland, "Pox on both your houses!" kind of statement, or declare themselves 'apolitical.' The first says, "I don't want to think too hard about this." The second says, "I blindly trust the people with power over my day-to-day living." I've found that if you are too intellectual or too ideological, others automatically wonder about your spiritual priorities. Just because Jesus doesn't take sides doesn't mean the disputes and the process of their resolution is unimportant.