Posts Tagged ‘Politics’

2010-0524-vote4me-chrisDon’t we already feel powerless enough!

That’s right, I may have the right to vote, but with all the local advert shenanigans and corporate influence it seems like a meaningless effort.

And how many times do you need to call me in a day?  I’m not exaggerating about all the phone calls.  These politicians and political action committees are relentless.  Nothing better than a recorded message from a recorded politician begging for my vote so he or she can play in a game that essentially excludes me.  And what kind of crazy world do we live in where these backward politicos, believe like all spammers, that it’s perfectly okay to annoy me and waste my time.

Then there’s all this advertising hogwash about freedom and making America a better place.  Give me a break!  The messages sound like a “robot” politician with pre-programmed vocal gravitas.  Hey here’s an idea.  Give me freedom from robocalls and let me opt out of them?!  Give me freedom from money in politics relentlessly extorting truths and spinning lies.

If I had my way I’d let the politico spammers choke on their own TV ads.

So who do I call?  No one.  That’s right there is no one to call when it comes to politico spammers.  The National Do Not Call Registry provides no air cover.

Don’t politicians get it?  People hate robocalls and yet the phones keep ringing.

I wish my vote truly counted.  Then I’d take the names of everybody robocalling me and vote against them.  These self-centered asses who give not a whit about my privacy.  Can I call them at home during dinner and tell them what I want them to run on?  After they’re elected can I knock on their front door during their day off and bend their ear about what’s important to me?  Right… that would be annoying and a real pain!

That’s correct, they want time off and then some.  You get harassed on the internet and now we’re “bullied” by politico hacks who don’t take our privacy serious.

That’s how far we’ve come…

Photo courtesy of Rob Smith Jr.

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Oregon Rep. David Wu (D) as Tony The Tiger

Meet Congress’ newest playboy…  56 year old Oregon Rep. David Wu (D).

A lawmaker from the northwest who has done nothing for motorcyclists or motorcycle issues is the latest to be accused of sexual misconduct.  Reportedly a woman, who is the daughter of one of Wu’s high school friends and a donor to his campaign efforts, is accusing the Oregon congressman of an unwanted sexual encounter.  Mr. Wu who is being treated for an undisclosed mental health condition stated the encounter was consensual.


Mr. Wu defined the encounter as “consensual”?  Uh, right… everyone knows that 18 year old women are always searching for 50+ year old men for a ‘hookup.’

It wouldn’t be much of a stretch to speculate that Mr. Wu was a bit delusional on that consensual part.  In fact it’s been widely reported he had become an increasingly unpredictable person whose senior staffers were so alarmed over his erratic behavior during last November’s election that they demanded he enter a hospital for psychiatric treatment.  At least six staffers left his team in protest.  Some of them, including the chief fund raiser had been with the congressman for more than a decade.

Allegedly this “consensual” incident happened around the same time — Thanksgiving 2010 — and was recently discovered when the woman left a scathing message on Wu’s phone, and the message was heard by aides in his office.

It wasn’t but just a few months ago that Wu attempted to explain his erratic behavior on KGW’s “Straight Talk”.   He insisted that he didn’t know whether the painkillers he accepted from a donor were prescription oxycodone or over-the-counter ibruprofin. He claimed he was just clowning around when he sent e-mails in his childrens’ names to staff members asking them to lay off “his dad” when he was wasted. He cautioned people about sharing photos of themselves in Halloween costumes. His talking points, delivered in a Prozac-like zombie calmness behind an unflinching smile, kept returning to how he was in a “really good place.” After listening to the interview, I wondered just exactly where that place is.

Hey we’ve all been there before, right?  Who hasn’t gotten a little tipsy and sent out early-morning e-mails to subordinates and signed them with our childrens’ names? Who hasn’t popped a couple of pain pills offered by a friend without asking what they were?

So with pressure mounting and a looming ethics investigation Mr. Wu announced he would resign.  No, wait.  In keeping with his unpredictable status he then decided he wouldn’t resign but instead would not run for re-election again in 2012.  Oh joy.  Rather than admonishing us to wash our hands to avoid the flu, as he did in his taxpayer-funded public-service announcements leading into the last election, now he’ll be able to record new ones with a mental health theme.  Maybe a “no means, NO” video for the youth?!

Let’s provide some perspective.  Riding out these rough waters for awhile means that Wu would continue to qualify for a pension worth about $851,000 over his lifetime.  This number was calculated by the National Taxpayers Union and reported in the USA Today.  Congressional pensions are 2 to 3 times more generous than those offered to private-sector workers who earn the same salary.  In addition, unlike most private-sector plans, a cost of living adjustment is applied to the congressional benefit.  More information on congress’ disproportionate accumulation of privilege is HERE.

Yeah, Wu is in a very good place indeed.

After 13 years in DC Wu’s lack of effectiveness is clear (485 co-sponsored bills (ranks 72 of 440; 14 made it into law (ranks 172 of 440).  Even during the KGW interview Mr. Wu didn’t dispute his poor ranking.  Why should we expect results from an Oregon politician?  Besides, Wu’s transgressions are extremely pedestrian compared to Portland’s illustrious borderline-pedophile mayor – Sam Adams.

Makes me so proud, I think I feel a tingle up my leg.

Photo re-mix by editor and courtesy of Kellogg’s and Wu.

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Sarah Palin Rides In Rolling Thunder - 2011

Well the end of the world didn’t happen earlier in the month as Harold Camping of Family Radio had predicted.  In fact, Mr. Camping first predicted the end of world back in 1994 and I’m not sure how many doomsday predictions we’ll give the Christian broadcaster before skeptics scoff at his antics and totally dismiss the message.

And, speaking of doomsday…

To hear the “rumbles” – and, I’m not talking about the thousands of bikes which appeared at the annual Rolling Thunder bike rally in Arlington, Virginia which draws attention to American troops who have gone missing in combat and remain unaccounted for – rather I’m talking about participants in the ride who expressed mixed feelings when former Alaska governor Sarah Palin (R) hoped onto a Harley and joined thousands of riders.

I don’t know about you , but this has a bit of that “spoiled little Daddy’s uptown girl lives rent free” smell to it.  Average talent and giant hype.  When I listen to her speak I hear the marketing machine.  Palin talking about military hardships?!  It’s like listening to the building receptionist droll on and on about the hardships of the African child she supports through TV commercial contributions.  She’s speaking the words, but her connection and understanding of the hardships are highly suspect.  Like the Creedence Clearwater Revival song… it’s true, some kids are born with a silver spoon.  But, there are a lot of us who didn’t even have spoons, wooden or plastic!

You’re likely thinking, blah, blah, blah… it’s just politics so chill out, Mac.  You’re right.  Maybe I’m feeling a little envious that I couldn’t participate…

Okay.  Independent of political leanings and politician likes, I do believe the involvement of a high-profile politician can only boost the visibility of the veteran’s event, raise contribution awareness and help energize America to not forget.  That is a good thing.   Thank you Sarah Palin!

Photo courtesy of AP

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It was the slogan of American Honda’s safety awareness campaign back in 1998.

The “Stupid Hurts” (.pdf) campaign was intended to create a lasting impression on parents and youngsters as the company was under a lot of pressure with respect to marketing and promotion of ATVs.  It was a multi-million dollar program to deliver straightforward, no-nonsense messages encouraging rider training about helmet use, operator-only use, drug and alcohol-free operation, appropriate age/vehicle size, and youth supervision.

But, beginning Jan. 1, 2010  “stupid is as stupid does”…the Oregon legislature has passed a number of new laws to protect YOU as well as increase the fines because in case you haven’t heard the state has a “revenue challenge.”  Many would debate that it’s a SPENDING problem, but what do we know?  For example, the fine for riding a motorcycle without a motorcycle endorsement jumps from $360 to $720. However, the law also requires the court to suspend the fine if the rider completes training and receives an endorsement within 120 days of sentencing.  Of course if you’re under 21 years of age you are required to complete a TEAM Oregon Basic Rider Training (BRT) course which historically has had long lead times.

But, wait there’s more:

  1. Oregon’s “Move Over” law in 2010 now means that you’ll have to move over for tow trucks and other roadside assistance vehicles. Under current law, drivers have to pull over from police cars, fire engines and ambulances rendering assistance on a highway having two or more lanes of traffic going in the same direction. The change also clarifies that if a motorist can’t pull over because there is a vehicle in the other lane, the driver must slow his or her vehicle to at least 5 miles an hour under the posted speed.
  2. There was also an amendment to House Bill 2040 to add roadside assistance vehicles and tow vehicles to the list of vehicles that require motorist to “maintain a safe distance.”  Failure to maintain a safe distance (ORS 811.147) is a class B traffic violation.
  3. For drunk drivers who are convicted with a blood alcohol level of .15 percent or higher — they will now pay a minimum fine of $2,000. Previously, the fine structure called for a minimum fine of $1,000 for a first offense, $1,500 for a second conviction and $2,000 for a third or subsequent conviction, without regard for level of drunkenness.
  4. And what about protecting the children?  Any under 16 years of age will have to wear a safety belt or harness when operating a Class I or Class II all-terrain vehicle used for off-road use or a Class II ATV legal for street use. The safety belt or safety harness must be used when the vehicles are used both on public roads and premises open to the public. The law holds the parent, legal guardian or person responsible for the child responsible for compliance.
  5. Operators and passengers of Class II ATVs who are younger than 18 must wear motorcycle helmets. There is an exception for vehicles that have a roof or roll bar and that are registered through the Department of Transportation.

Clearly these new rules will create a lasting impression and stop stupid!

Photo courtesy of Honda.

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