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Archive for November, 2012

Where: Arlington, Virginia (specifically Roslyn)

When: July 2012

Reflection of crane in building

Architecture is frozen music -Goethe

Why: Weekly Photo Challenge theme of reflections.

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The original concept of this post was to be an update concerning an earlier post about the 2010 special Senate election in Massachusetts to fill the seat vacated by the death of Democrat Edward Kennedy. To recap, Republican Scott Brown defeated Democrat Martha Coakley in that election.

That post highlighted the fact that 655,781 fewer Bay State citizens cast their ballot in that 2010 election when compared to the number of citizens who voted in the 2008 Senate election (John Kerry (D) vs. Jeff Beatty (R)).

I wanted this post to see if the number of voters in Massachusetts increased or decreased in the 2012 Senate contest between incumbent Scott Brown (R) and challenger Elizabeth Warren (D). To recap, Warren won.

The total number of ballots cast for Brown and Warren was 3,090,053, which is a 38.7% increase from the 2010 total of 2,226,789. The 2012 total was also a 7.1% increase from the number of ballots cast during the last regular Senate election in the Bay State (2008 = 2,882,570).

I was heartened by these figures. Not necessarily by the results, but by the numbers. It always does my heart glad to see more people becoming involved in the political process and having their voice counted. My previous post on this subject ended with the thought that the reason that fewer people voted between 2008 and 2010 was because they were tired. I think the increase seen in the 2012 totals show that either I was wrong or that the people woke up.

While cruising through the numbers and tallies, I did see something that caught my eye. Warren earned 1,660,738 votes to win the election. In that same election, President Obama earned a “yes” mark from 1,901,276 citizens of the Bay State. That means that over 240,538 checked the box for the current resident of the White House, but declined to give the same courtesy to his fellow Democrat.

What intrigued me more was the following comparison which skewed the opposite way. On the other side of the political spectrum, 1,429,315 people voted for Scott Brown in 2012 (which, by the way, was a 22.3% increase over his 2010 tally…and he still lost). On that same ballot, only 1,178,245 cast their vote for president for the Republican challenger, Mitt Romney. That means that 251,070 (there’s your number for the day) gave their seal of approval to Brown who did not do the same thing for Romney…and he was the former governor of that very state.

Not sure what it means. I’m not paid for analysis; I just like to dig for data.

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Given that in 1956, as Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower was running for a second term as President of the United States of America, the platform of the Republican Party in that year had this to say…

We favor self-government, national suffrage and representation in the Congress of the United States for residents of the District of Columbia.;

And given that in 1976, as Republican President Gerald Ford was running to be reelected as the President of the United States of America, the platform of the Republican Party in that year had this to say…

We again…support giving the District of Columbia voting representation in the United States Senate and House of Representatives.
;

And given that in 1996, as Republican Senator Bob Dole sought to win the presidency, the platform of the Republican Party in that year had this to say…

We…reject calls for statehood for the District.;

And given that in 2012, as Republican Governor Mitt Romney sought to win the presidency, the platform of the Republican Party in that year had this to say…

We oppose statehood for the District of Columbia.

My follow-up question is, “What changed?”

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Not sure whether this should be filed under “life imitates art”, “art imitating life”, or just plain, obnoxious coincidence.

The news came out recently that actor Larry Hagman passed away. Mr. Hagman is known for playing the J.R. Ewing on the television show Dallas. Hagman was currently portraying the scheming oilman in the current incarnation of the show which started this year. Hagman’s character was the patriarch of the Ewing clan and now he has died during the run of that show.

During the first running of Dallas – from 1978 to 1991 – the head of Ewing family (and J.R.’s father) was Jock Ewing who was played by actor Jim Davis. Interesting to note that Mr. Davis also passed away (in 1981) during the run of that popular show.

Those two deaths aren’t enough to cue the theme from The Twilight Zone, but I thought it was worthy of a mention.

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What am I thankful for?

I am thankful I have lived in a metropolis (in this case, the Washington DC area) that is big enough and intelligent enough to host a smart, challenging, and puzzling event such as the Washington Post Hunt.

Below is a picture I took during the 2009 version of this event.

Statue puzzle at PostHunt 2009

It’s a clue – if you know how to look

The statues in this picture – actually, people dressed up as art objects – and a card with five sentences which was handed out to all the participants were meant as clues.

Sadly, I missed the 2012 version of this event and most likely will miss the 2013 staging of this contest.

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On this day, the day after American Thanksgiving, is a day to move away from the turkey recipes and to discuss goose and ganders.

To all the Americans protesting the Israeli’s government use of automated lethal weaponry against the self-governing enclave of the Gaza Strip…

…I look forward to your protests against the United States government use of automated lethal weaponry against the sovereign nation of Pakistan.

To all the Americans protesting the deaths of children in Israeli’s military activities in the Gaza Strip…

…I look forward to your protest against the death of children in Afghanistan at the hands of the American military.

To all the Americans protesting the settlements created by the Israeli government on land seized after wars…

…I look forward to your protests demanding that the United States return California and New Mexico.

To all the Americans protesting the Israeli’s government ignoring resolutions from the United Nations…

…I look forward to your protests against the government of the United States ignoring resolutions from the UN.

After all, the protest-sauce that is good for the goose is good for the gander.

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…the following edicts, hereforeafter known as the “Citation Needed” Rules, would be implemented.

If any blogger, pundit, or commenter, etc., described President Barack Obama as a “socialist”, that person must also cite the specific text in Das Kapital (Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, 1867) that the President is allegedly adhering to (extra points will be awarded if the citation can be done in the original German).

If any blogger, pundit, or commenter, etc., describes any member of the Republican Party as a “fascist”, that person must also cite – in specific detail – how that member of the GOP is a proponent of “a governmental system led by a dictator having complete power, forcibly suppressing opposition and criticism, regimenting all industry, commerce, etc., and emphasizing an aggressive nationalism and often racism.”

If any blogger, pundit, or commenter, etc., uses the Bible to support any position, that person must also cite the quote that supports their statement. In addition, all available translation of the Bible must be used so that the blogger, pundit, commenter, etc., cannot be accused of cherry-picking their source (extra points will be awarded if the citation can be done in the original Aramaic).

If any blogger, pundit, or commenter, etc., accuses Governor Mitt Romney of being part of a tax amnesty program in 2009, that person must also cite actual proof.

If any blogger, pundit, or commenter, etc. accuses the Democratic Party of deploying an army of illegal aliens to assist in the 2012 election, that person must also cite actual proof (extra points will be awarded if such proof comes in the form of a video; points will be taken away if the person behind the video is James O’Keefe).

Any blogger, pundit, commenter, etc., who ignores these rules will receive a “Citation citation” and be banned from posting for a period no shorter than ninety (90) days but no greater than one hundred and eight (180) days.

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