Turning THERE NEVER WAS into YES THERE IS

The final votes have yet to be counted, but it is now clear.

America, the greatest nation on earth, has once again turned THERE NEVER WAS into YES THERE IS.

History has been made.

No longer do we need chants of YES WE CAN, because, my friends, YES WE DID.

I am speechless.

And tomorrow, a new day dawns in this great land.

Ladies and gentlemen, your first family:

_____________________________________________________________________________

Congratulations to John McCain for one of the most honest, heartfelt and gracious concession speeches that hopefully will bridge some of the divides still present.

For complete election results, visit:

http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/results/president/

Election Night Drinking Game

Well, folks, Tuesday November 4th is just around the corner, so here’s what all of you Joe the Drinkers have been waiting for:

Your 2008 Election Night Drinking Game Initiative!

The rules for this one are simple and come courtesy of my friends Karen and Diane.

Just follow these 5 easy steps:

1.  VOTE!   (If possible, early and often)

This is the most important step, good citizens.  Remember:

“One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.”  -Plato

2.  Purchase your favorite bottle of vodka.  I recommend sending an olive branch to Palin’s neighbors and buying Stolichnaya. Continue reading

Vice Presidential Debate Drinking Game

Attention Readers: For the 2012 edition, CLICK HERE!

_____________________________________________

BIDEN VS. PALIN

Thursday, Thursday, Thursday!

He’s a train-riding hothead with a Donald Trump comb-over from the second smallest state of Delaware.

She’s a moose-hunting redneck, tongue-tied, Tina Fey look-a-like from the biggest state of Alaska.

And they’re going head-to-head for one night only from Washington University in St. Louis, MO.

THE DATE:  Thursday, October 2, 2008

THE MODERATOR:  Gwen Ifill from PBS

THE FOCUS:  A no holds-barred VP smack-down.

_____________________________________________

And here it is, for all you Debate Party maniacs —

Your official Drinking Game Initiative: Continue reading

Presidential Debate Drinking Game

ATTENTION READERS: Click here for the 2012 edition!

CAPTION:  Why so serious?

C’mon, dudes.  Perk up.  It’s not like the economy is in shambles, Americans can’t afford health care, we’re in the midst of a global energy crisis, and we’re stuck in a never-ending military operation in the Middle East with no clear exit strategy…oh, wait, yeah….it is, we can’t, we are, and oh shit.

Well, it’s time to wake the kids, call the neighbors, turn up granny’s hearing aid, put out the party favors, and have yourself an old-fashioned Debate Party — despite the fact that someone wanted to postpone the first one. 

With all the “is it on or not?” debate about the first debate, I decided to forge ahead as planned with the hope that there would be no delay.  Regardless of when the debate(s) actually happen, you’ll need a drinking game to survive all the political double-speak and subterfuge. Continue reading

State of the Union Drinking Game 2008

President George W. (Dubya) Bush will be delivering his State of the Union Address this Monday Night, January 28th, 2008 at 9pm EST. 

Unlike last year, there is some cause for celebration as this will be the last address Dubya will deliver as President.  Still, he has plenty of time to muck things up, so with equal parts fear and joy, the only way to get through this is to drink up!

Those who got drunk with me last year will notice a return of many of last year’s favorite rules, but stay focused, there’s much CHANGE from last year, and remember, folks, we all love the buzzword of CHANGE!

Here are the rules for The State of the Union Drinking Game, version 2008, Last Year of the Dubya: Continue reading

Benazir Bhutto, Dead at Age 54

I knew the name and the face, but not much about her until today, sadly the day of her brutal assassination at the hands of an as yet unnamed militant terrorist group.  Benazir Bhutto was the most important political figure in Pakistan during the past twenty years, and someone everyone in the world should know and remember.  With her untimely murder, the fate of Pakistan hangs in the balance: will the much maligned President Musharraf allow the free elections to go on, and if so, will there be a candidate capable of carrying on Bhutto’s progressive message of peace and stability in the most volatile of the world’s political theaters?

Benazir Bhutto was the first female leader of a post-colonial Muslim country, the daughter of a political dynasty (her father was the first popularly elected Prime Minister of Pakistan and was eventually executed by a military regime that later seized power), a champion for democracy in the Muslim world, and a world leader who experienced a roller coaster ride of ups and downs from winning elections to living in exile to facing assassination attempts by suicide bombers during her triumphant return to her homeland this October.  Despite the attempt on her life, she vowed not to back down, comforted the widows and orphans of those who died in the attack, and her People’s Party was primed to win enough seats in the upcoming elections in January that would usher her return to the world stage as Prime Minister–this time, what could have been her third time, as a counter-agent to President Musharraf’s military rule and the strongest American ally in the Muslim world. 

To put it in the simplest terms, Benazir Bhutto was the best hope of Pakistan achieving a stable democracy and the best hope of reigniting the search for Osama Bin Laden.  If anyone could’ve prompted Musharraf to “grow a pair” and bring in Bin Laden come hell or high-water, it was her…if she had only been given the chance.

Despite controversy surrounding her political party and family (mostly involving kick-backs and financial corruption), Benazir Bhutto, for all her flaws was a brave woman beloved by the people she fought for (moderate, middle class and poor Muslims in Pakistan and around the world), ruthlessly hated by those she rallied against (militant extremists, the Taliban, al-Qaida) and viewed by the West as a harbinger of democracy in the Muslim World, an essential ally in the War on Terror, and a woman who could single-handedly bring stability to a nuclear-armed nation on the brink of crisis.

From AlJazeera, the YouTube video below gives the layman a quick run down of her life and times:

While it may seem cynical to use a tragedy like this an open door to political plotting, one can not dismiss the effect her assassination might have on the Presidential Primaries about to start just a few days from now with the Iowa caucuses.  Hillary Clinton, who knew Bhutto well from when she personally visited Bhutto and her children in Pakistan while Bhutto was still Prime Minister with her own daughter Chelsea, responded in way that was intimate, heartfelt, and statesman-like.  Quite frankly, she oozed presidential authority and appeared in her statements as a calm, confident woman who related to not only the fallen idol that has become Benazir Bhutto, but also as a leader who can connect with Bhutto’s supporters, and most importantly the American people.  Meanwhile, the lack of experience and personal connections made the response from Barrack Obama feel cold, calculated, and without the proper perspective.

On the Republican side, John McCain emerged today as the gruff statesman who knows the players, knows the dangers, and can make the tough decisions that will be vital to protecting America and our interests abroad.  Meanwhile, Romney displayed an icky case of the “blah, blah, blahs” while Huckabee found nothing meaningful to say beyond the obvious.  Yes, any sane person mourns her loss and prays for her family and supporters.  Thanks for the insight, Huck.

With the other candidates submerged in the typical sea of tailored responses calling the assassination a “cowardly act” and one that “won’t go unnoticed”, Clinton and McCain reminded U. S. voters today why experience counts.

Meanwhile, Benazir Bhutto reminded us how one woman could change the world, and how the game of politics will always be a dangerous proposition, especially when your message champions the common people elitists and militarists wish to control.  Bhutto today became a martyr.  The actions of her political movement before her death will echo throughout history, while this single succint moment of three gun-shots fired by a suicide bomber who then detonated himself into oblivion will have ramifications we might only understand years from now when hindsight is 20/20.  Let us hope then that it is not too late.

Written by David H. Schleicher

A Review of Michael Moore’s “Sicko”

Shining Light on America’s Health Care Crisis, 8 July 2007
9/10
Author:
David H. Schleicher from New Jersey, USA

In many ways, “Sicko” is Michael Moore’s most tightly focused film since “Roger & Me.” Recently he’s dealt with heady philosophical issues involving America’s obsession with guns and violence in “Bowling for Columbine” and then displayed the follies of the Bush Administration and the quagmire that is current geopolitics in “Farhenheit 9/11.” Here he turns his gaze to a single, tangible thing: America’s health care crisis.

Moore is up to his usual bag of tricks with his goofy pop-culture inspired propaganda, expertly combining heartfelt sentiment with big laughs in his anecdotal pieces, and essentially preaching to the choir. Informing us that insurance and pharmaceutical companies are vile profit driven machines who lobby hard in Washington and buyout politicians left and right isn’t exactly telling us something we didn’t already know.  Scary still are the review board doctors working for the insurance companies who get paid big bonuses for denying the most claims, and saddest of all, the people who actually die from not getting their treatment.  Moore, never shying from his political leanings, firmly points his finger at Nixon (whose policies paved the way for HMO’s), Reagan (who propagated the idea of socialized medicine as the first sign of Communist invasion), and Bush (who signed into law prescription drug bills that have crippled our senior citizens). He also suggests that Hillary Clinton, whose own health care plan was shot down by special interests back in the early 1990’s, is now on the same payroll after losing the good fight.

Moore really scores, though, when he starts globe hopping and shows us just how well socialized medicine works in countries like Canada, Great Britian, and France, and how much all of the people involved (doctors and patients) think it’s wonderful and that our system is absurd. The most telling anecdote is when he’s able to get a group of 9/11 heroes suffering from the debilitating effects of having worked at Ground Zero some much needed treatment in Cuba (of all places!) after they have been repeatedly denied by their insurance companies here in the States.

Other than marrying a Canadian or moving to one of these countries where health care is free to all, he offers no solid suggestions for how people who want to stay in America can fix the system other than to give this vague sense that “socialized medicine works.” He’s shed some light on the topic, and points us in the right direction, but isn’t willing to lead the way with any practical solutions.

Some of the most interesting points are made while in France, where the citizens enjoy free higher education, free health care, 35-hour work weeks, and government issued nannies. One of the Americans living now in France points out, “the people in France get all this because here the government is afraid of the people while in the States the people are afraid of the government.” Marie Antoinette, it seems, lost her head so the French could get free health care.

Funny, sobering, and frustrating, “Sicko” is a wake-up call for America to start their own revolution.

Message to Washington: Off with their heads!

Originally Published on the Internet Movie Database:

http://imdb.com/title/tt0386032/usercomments-196