31 January 2008
Mrs. Clinton’s victory was expected and may have largely reflected her prominence on the national political scene for almost two decades. She did well among those who cast their votes early; among late deciders, Mr. Obama matched her almost one for one, according to exit polls conducted by Edison/Mitofsky.
29 January 2008
How to decide whether or not to tell someone they are dying... I suppose this is a significant question. I think I want to know if I am dying--it seems rather odd that everyone would pretend you are ultimately going to get better when it looks like you won't.
On the lighter side...
The baby is now climbing up on the edge of the table and throwing everything on floor. She knocked over a cup of cold coffee and then played in it. Yoko has made two puppets. Pippo the Hippo and a dog, whom I haven't named yet. I'll post some video later.
I think that's all.
28 January 2008
In Case You Missed It: Hillary hears all the time from Democrats in Florida and Michigan that they want their voices heard. Yesterday, Hillary announced that she will ask her Democratic convention delegates to support seating the delegations from Florida and Michigan. "I hope to be President of all 50 states and U.S. territories, and that we have all 50 states represented and counted at the Democratic convention," Hillary said.
It'd be funny if she lost in FL too, although I do hear she has a substantial lead among old, white racists.
27 January 2008
25 January 2008
Death as a hole has been very popular, but it got moved to page two because I keep blogging. Click the link, stay on board.
The New Year's Sumo tournament is building to an epic showdown between Hakuho and Asashoryu.
Hillary Clinton is destroying the future of the Democratic party and winning the nomination in the meanwhile.
Imagine if at the next presidential debate Barack Obama — who is agitated about what he calls Bill Clinton’s misleading criticisms — cocked his head, smiled ruefully and, in Reaganesque “there you go again” tones, said something like this to Hillary Clinton: “You know, I admired some aspects of Bill Clinton’s presidency. But let’s recall that it was precisely these sort of too-cute-by-half statements that caused him to be reprimanded by a federal judge and stripped of his law license. Senator, you may want to go back to those days and that style of politics, but I think most Americans are ready to move on.”
24 January 2008
22 January 2008
I am a person who reads debate transcripts. This is my favorite part from Monday night:
CLINTON: Now, wait a minute. Wolf, wait a minute. Wait a minute. Just a minute.
BLITZER: Senator Edwards, let them wrap up. Then I'm going to come to you. Yes?
CLINTON: I just want -- I just to clarify -- I want to clarify the record. Wait a minute.
EDWARDS: There's a third person in this debate.
BLITZER: Wait a minute, Senator Edwards. Hold on.
I should give a dramatic reading of this. It would be touching, I imagine.
20 January 2008
",'' Obama campaign manager David Plouffe said in a conference call with reporters. Plouffe said Obama received 13 delegates for the party's national convention in voting today and Clinton got 12. did well throughout the stateAlso, like only 10,000 people caucused in Nevada. Look, I think this thing is probably over if Obama doesn't roll a little bit on Feb. 5th. But if Edwards stays in and Obama keeps getting solid delegate counts, I think he could be the nominee when he power-brokers with Edwards come convention time. Don't want to win that way, but I'm not completely out yet.
I have known for a while that anyone who tells you that they know what happens after you die is lying to you and probably selling you something. It shouldn't be news to anyone that death is a great mystery and everyone is basically guessing about what happens when we die. I have, in the last year, been unfortunately slipping towards the opinion that when we die, we lose our consciousness entirely and that's it. This, although terribly depressing, seems to make the most sense to me, as a creature who has gained consciousness through brain maturation and will likely, one day, lose my ability to use my brain in a bizarre accident involving a clown and a couple of Mentos.
I say unfortunately because I hate the idea of not existing in a conscious way. It bothers me much, much more than the thought of going to hell. At least in hell, you are something. If you lose your consciousness, you are nothing and the thought of you as nothing is pretty unbearable, if you take a couple of minutes with it. This thought of me as nothing got me thinking about me before I was born. I am not really bothered about thoughts of my existence before I was born. It doesn't keep me up at night when I think about a universe before me. Why should I be bothered by thoughts of a universe without me again?
And why can we conceptualize of a beginning of ourselves, but not an ending? We can clearly observe that all of our conscious, cognitive processes are held in our brain. There's no mystery about that. What makes us think that there is some other part of us that we can't observe or understand that we label our 'soul'--why do we insist that it hold our real consciousness?
I might also mention that I don't think that the idea of ceasing to exist after we die has any barring at all on whether or not there is a god or gods or anything that created us. If there was a god, it would have no responsibility to us anyway, especially not to keeping our consciousness going after we die…A god could do whatever it wanted to do. The two seem unrelated to me, but I'm sure someone will try to correct me.
I don't know what bothers me more, the idea of eternal life, eternal death, or non-existence. They all seem to be pretty unfavorable to me.
I did a little reading on near-death experiences and read that many people experience meeting whatever they perceive as a god or gods. This, however, seems to be easily explained in the brain 'dreaming' right before it loses consciousness or right before it regains consciousness. Yoko tells me the story of a man in Japan who died and saw a river and heard someone calling his name to come the other side. He couldn't go and when he realized he couldn't go, he knew he was not really dead.
Christians and Muslims would have argue that at on the other side of the river was hell. I disagree.
You should weigh in now.
19 January 2008
18 January 2008
“Because I’m like, an ordinary person, I thought that they meant what’s your biggest weakness?” Mr. Obama said. “So I said, ‘Well, I don’t handle paper that well. You know, my desk is a mess. I need somebody to help me file and stuff all the time.’ So the other two they say uh, they say well my biggest weakness is ‘I’m just too passionate about helping poor people. I am just too impatient to bring about change in America.”As the room erupts in laughter, he continues: “If I had gone last I would have known what the game was. I could have said, ‘Well you know, I like to help old ladies across the street. Sometimes they don’t want to be helped. It’s terrible.’”
17 January 2008
Yoko is celebrating her 19th birthday this week, although I can't say for certain how many times she has celebrated her 19th birthday. We (Yoko and I) are actually going to go out by ourselves, without the baby, to see a movie tomorrow morning. This will be the longest time we have been away from the baby ever, I think. Hopefully none of us implode.
“This woman said, ‘Well, how do you get up in the morning?’ It just struck me, how do any of us get up in the morning?” Mrs. Clinton recounted.
Look, am I just missing the boat or is being a woman much, much harder than I imagine? Is getting out of bed in the morning so much harder for women than men? Hillary says she never makes issue of her gender, except of course, to constantly remind people that she is a woman and that she would be the first woman to be president and that it's so hard for her (as a woman) to run for president because she is a woman and that all women who are like her (because she is a woman) have the same womanly problem of getting out of bed in the morning. I guess I have the same question too, How does she do it?
I'll tell you how Barack Obama does it: By kicking ass and taking names.
And another thing: Why does Obama have to run against both Bill and Hillary Clinton? Shouldn't we be a little bit scared when a comment that Bill Clinton makes plays such an important role in the campaign? Dude, seriously, sit down. You aren't running for anything.
Maybe we'll get another sex scandal out of this before the whole thing is over...
14 January 2008
13 January 2008
History is hard to know, because of all the hired bullshit, but even without being sure of “history” it seems entirely reasonable to think that every now and then the energy of a whole generation comes to a head in a long fine flash, for reasons that nobody really understands at the time – and which never explain, in retrospect, what actually happened. [...]There was madness in any direction, at any hour. If not across the Bay, then up the Golden Gate or down 101 to Los Altos or La Honda…You could strike sparks anywhere. There was a fantastic universal sense that whatever we were doing was right, that we were winning. And that, I think, was the handle – that sense of inevitable victory over the forces of Old and Evil. Not in any mean or military sense; we didn’t need that. Our energy would simply prevail. There was no point in fighting – on our side or theirs. We had all the momentum; we were riding the crest of a high and beautiful wave.So now, less than five years later, you can go up on a steep hill in Las Vegas and look West, and with the right kind of eyes you can almost see the high-water mark – that place where the wave finally broke and rolled back.
11 January 2008
This area has a couple of key features. Up in the left hand corner you see a big parking lot that is a grocery store. About a two minute walk away we have a Circle K. The train station is an 18 minute walk from the apartment, according to Yahoo! Japan. We are going to be on the second floor in a bigger apartment with a veranda, I think. We went to the nursery school today and there is a kid there that the baby is nominally friends with. They seemed to get along well and all the women there seemed kind enough and not too shrill.
Big problems at work today, though. Do more, get paid less. The part-timer's dream.
10 January 2008
09 January 2008
Now. Obama needs to go on Oprah and tear up a little. Talk about his mother and distant father. And do a little bit of spinning himself.
And he also needs to convince Edwards to get the h-e- double hockey stick out of this mofo. He's miserable, his wife is sick, his kids are miserable. Dude, go home now.
To make matters worse, I personally have also had a shitty day after my iPod has been acting up (I know, even I don't want to hear about it) and finding out a great part-time job I was supposed to be landing pays just about a dollar more an hour than working at McDonalds. And I've got a cold and baby has a cold.
07 January 2008
I didn't want to embarrass Yoko, so I asked her a couple of times if it was okay. She said it was fine, but she was worried about the baby's safety. What if the pee-er chose to retaliate? You don't understand, I said, He's more scared of me than anything. I'm the big angry black man in the white suburban neighborhood in 1954. Ain't nobody going to take it to this net. Nobody.
Tomorrow, I go back to work and start counting down days until I'm finished. Less than 40, I think. An actual number is forthcoming.
06 January 2008
From the Times:
[Clinton] says The Associated Press has said that Mr. Obama “could have a pretty good debate with himself” about his health-care plan, and says he was for single-payer health care, then universal health care, then proposed a health care plan that doesn’t cover everybody. You have to be able to count on a president.
Mr. Obama says The A.P. was quoting Clinton aides.
Not so, unfortunately, with 2007. Having the baby was a large part of it, I guess. I gave money to a political campaign for the first time and then lost money in the stock market. I rented a car and got really angry at people for driving too fast. I finished my master's degree and published as an academic for the first time. I complained about noise and chose not to go places based on how difficult it would be to park. I didn't go to many shows. I went to bed before midnight on most days.
Anyway, my Christmas presents really illustrate how far I've fallen.
Now, the iPod is debatable--maybe still in the child category--but the electric shaver, wallet, scarf, and CD by popular Japanese rock band are all in the adult category. And more than all of that is how happy I am to have a nice wallet, scarf, and shaver, and how much I actually like a band called 'Bump of Chicken'. So take a long look at this guy and say goodbye, folks. He's gone.
05 January 2008
The race in New Hampshire, for the Democrats, is essentially the same as it was in Iowa. Turn out of independent voters is wicked important. Only old, stanch Democrats show up, it's a close race between Obama and Clinton. Young independents show up, Obama runs away with it. So Obama doesn't have to change anything, theorhetically, to repeat his success and any negativity on Clinton's part is only going to hurt her. See below, man, it's now the American dream vs. Hillary Clinton and she can't win that.
Now, for the Republicans, Iowa was a race to see who the Christian Right would choose as their candidate, but it ignored the other half of the Republican party, the neo-con, fiscal conservative wing that could really care less about where you go to church. Romney was supposed to be able to get broad support from both wings and wasn't able to snag the Christians because of his Mormon underpants and, well, he sort of comes across as a pompous ass. Hucakbee, although he may have the support of the Right Wing Christians who think that the only thing that matters in America is some imaginary woman's uterus, has no support in the neo-con, fiscal conservative wing because, well, he's not a neo-con or fiscally conservative. Huckabee will not be able to change that in the next month which means, without some brilliant southern strategy, he's done. The Republican who will win the nomination is the one who can appeal more to both of these sides than anyone else. Just having the support of one wing ain't going to be enough.
Stephe-o predicts McCain/ Huckabee v. Obama/ Biden in the fall with Obama/ Biden winning big.
04 January 2008
03 January 2008
But today I met one of Yoko's best friends who lived in Tanzania for two years and taught elementary school. She was really cool. All of Yoko's friends have been so kind to me and to the baby. I feel like I got to know a little bit more about her past. We also got about 25 minutes alone today in a coffee shop. It was nice, but I ended up complaining the whole time.
There is a kiss ass picture of me on a horse forthcoming.