Presidential politics

by Grace aka costofcollege

Are you a democratic socialist like Bernie Sanders? Take the quiz.

I suspect most Totebaggers are democratic socialists.

Who’s your candidate at this point, a year ahead of the presidential election.  You can use ISideWith.com to help you decide.



Would you prefer that the Totebag avoid political topics?

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125 thoughts on “Presidential politics

  1. Hmm, so apparently I’m a Sanders guy. But I’m still voting for Hillary. I think I believe in principle for a lot of the things he stands for, but I just don’t believe they are workable in practice in a country as large and diverse as ours, so you end up getting the half-a-loaf that winds up with higher taxes/more spending, without that spending going to the programs that would make the long-term differences (I am big on gov’t investment in people and infrastructure, neither of which has a snowball’s chance in hell).

    And as an aside, I am stuff befuddled as to the illogic of our infrastructure spending. The govt can currently borrow money at basically the lowest rates in, well, ever. If you’re ever going to finance fixes for roads and bridges and rail lines and all of those things that keep the wheels of commerce flowing, why wouldn’t you do it now, when you can basically issue bonds for free, and pay them back later when interest rates are higher? But all of the focus is on cutting spending and cutting taxes — which means we’re going to end up financing these things later on, when bridges collapse and safety is critical, and the interest rates to borrow the money are higher.

    BTW, the second poll needs another option for “I don’t care one way or another” — political topics aren’t my favorite, but I also don’t actively dislike them.

  2. I’m not a democratic socialist. I think lots of the goals are valid, and I share them, but I think the plan for implementation will fail. Yes, the second really need an I don’t care button. According to it, I stNd with Rand.

  3. Given that most of our discussions devolve into politics anyway, I doubt we can ban that topic.

  4. I didn’t take the quiz, but i know that politically speaking, I am closer to Sanders than to Clinton. However, I would vote for Clinton because I am a realist – once elected, our President needs to be able to get things done, and while the uber right wing is going to make it very hard for Clinton, I am concerned that if Sanders were elected they might all try to move to Texas and secede :-).
    Well, maybe that would get things done.

  5. Sanders was my #1, but I would/will vote for Clinton (my #2). Kasich was my #3. I think a Clinton/Kasich team would sweep the nation. He should change teams.

  6. For most everything, I think you need “some” skin in the game. I realize some is relative. But, it is as simple as when we hold an event, we rarely make it “free” as then people with reserve a spot and not show up, preventing someone who really wanted to go from attending. I think that for college and job opportunities that are government funded, the person needs to have some way to show their committment to benfitting from it.

  7. Taking the quiz, I’m apparently for Rubio, although I think he’s a little robotic and like Kasich a lot better. I am not a democratic socialist.

  8. I am finding it really hard to get excited about any of the candidates. I will probably vote for Clinton, but it definitely feels like the best of a bunch of mediocre or flat-out bad options. I don’t know if I am just getting old & cynical or what. Hillary really rubs me the wrong way in a lot of ways, but I don’t think Sanders would be effective, and he’s a little too liberal for me. And the Republican party as a whole is catering way too much to the extreme right for my taste.

  9. I think that for college, people need to show some aptitude. In the countries where college is free, you compete for available spots in your field of study. This is an efficient but unfair-to-the-disadvantaged-in-the-US mechanism.

    I’m not sure the US is ready to fund disadvantaged schools at a higher level than advantaged schools, as many socialist countries do. Our schools have funding/student around $6-7k, which is roughly the level that the vast majority of the country funds at. That seems to be enough money that lack of funding is not the primary variable affecting outcomes.

  10. TOTALLY off-topic, but OMG I need this — https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/home/multitasking-new-lg-washer-combo-does-two-laundry-loads-at-once/2015/11/05/6e63ebb8-8329-11e5-9afb-0c971f713d0c_story.html — I never have enough delicates to run a full load, so I wait and wait and go without my nice white shirt for two weeks to get a big enough load. But I also need the giant one for comforters, etc., so a smaller overall washer just won’t do. This is awesome.

  11. LfB, one of my friends (3 athletic kids in our muddy climate working long days 3 days/week with long commute) had her house built with space/outlets for two washers and dryers. She said she needed double I/O. :)

  12. I’m not a democratic socialist. I do believe that good quality health care should be available and funded in part by the government. Maybe that means single payer with buy-up options, I honestly don’t follow the details closely. As was mentioned yesterday, I don’t think it is fair that a child isn’t getting the best cancer treatment because the family can’t afford out of network healthcare. But I’m not about to agree to providing free college or hand out jobs to those that don’t work hard.

  13. I would like to see Sanders stay in the race a while longer because I think we could use his ideas in the national conversation. But, I chose Clinton for competence/experience/pragmatism.

  14. “I never have enough delicates to run a full load…”
    Without trying to piss off the environmentalists, you really can afford to run your washer with one garment if you feel like it. The cost, as someone mentioned on here a while ago is something like <$0.20 IIRC. Maybe that's just incremental cost and excludes the 1/5,000th of the total cost of the machine for depreciation in each load's cost.
    http://homeguides.sfgate.com/expected-lifespans-washing-machines-67293.html

  15. I’m sure you are all shocked, SHOCKED to learn that I am NOT a Democratic Socialist.

    But I do like the idea of the post office offering basic banking/check cashing services. I’ve talked about how if I were independently wealthy, one of my projects might be to offer no-interest payday type loans and counseling to the working poor.

  16. I like the way the quiz, after telling me I “got Not a Democratic Socialist,” gave me the option to “try again” – like maybe I hadn’t tried hard enough the first time.

  17. I never have enough delicates to run a full load, so I wait and wait and go without my nice white shirt for two weeks to get a big enough load

    You know, much like a dishwasher, it still works even when it’s not full.

  18. That mini washing machine is awesome. I would love that for delicates! Other use – to wash brightly colored items that may bleed without having to add an extra hour to laundry time to run an extra load with one item.

  19. Like LfB, “apparently I’m a Sanders guy”. I will not vote for HRC (as if it matters in NY), despite as others say she’ll be more likely to actually be able to get things done.

    Sanders’ problem, as I see it, is that too many of his ideas are just too damn practical. Too many political heads (Congress, both houses) would roll if Republicans were to go along with pretty much anything he advocates.

  20. It’s not the expense involved in running an extra load. It’s the time.

    Toss in item, add cap of Woolite, click start. Hang up when done. It literally takes less than 2 min.

  21. LfB, since I’ve been living alone half the time, I have taken to washing almost everything on delicate. I basically have 2 loads now – Delicates (undergarments & sweaters mixed with light-weight, not-too-dirty shirts & dress pants) and Regular (t-shirts, pajamas, jeans & khakis). I just take things out of the delicate wash that need to hang or lay flat to dry. However, if I ever lived in a full household again, I would totally buy that washer!

  22. @Fred/Rhett — I know, I know, it’s totally not rational. But I was a kid/teen in the energy crisis; my head is full of “don’t stand there with the refrigerator door open!” and “turn off the lights!” and “turn the thermostat down!” and “what are you doing, running a load with four shirts?!” And I just. cannot. do. it. It makes me feel like I’ve robbed a bank or something.

    Even sillier, because we have one of those fancy new washers that automatically adjusts water level to load size.

  23. “Without trying to piss off the environmentalists, you really can afford to run your washer with one garment if you feel like it.”

    I haven’t verified it, but my understanding is that our front loader will automatically adapt to the size of the load and not waste a bunch of water on a very small load.

    I also wash clothes that don’t require delicate treatment with the delicates if they have been worn but aren’t really soiled.

    I agree with Rhett and Fred on the issue of time. Is this a female thing that guys don’t get?

  24. I really don’t like HRC. I think she’s a liar, but I’ll vote for her because I think she’s smart and can lead the country.

    I agree about Kasich. I really like him because he smart, and he already governed a mini version of the US. Ohio has so many of the same problems as the entire US, without foreign policy.

    I’ve learned a lot from several of you, and I’ve come to understand why conservatives believe so strongly in certain policies and ideas. I just don’t want a group of people that are unwilling to compromise for any reason running the country.

    I had to unexpectedly buy a new washer last week. I searched the old comments to get a recommendation.
    I was really annoyed to have to buy one because my old washer wasn’t even six years, and I splurged when we bought that one in 2010.

    The LGs looked nice, but I couldn’t justify the cost since I still have one final reno bill and I still need furniture in a couple of rooms. If I had my washer out in a mud room, I would have gone for the LG. Mine just sits in a basement.

  25. “Delicates (undergarments”

    My underwear, and the kids’, get the heavy cycle, as do socks and my workout clothes and towels.

  26. Fred & Rhett – I know, I know. I actually do not find laundry to be very stressful as it is mostly hands off. But running the delicates that need to be hung up to dry at the same time as another load means one or two hours less that the machines are taken up on the weekend when I’m doing laundry. It’s not that the laundry is hard, but it takes a long time to get it all done. How much is that worth to me? I don’t know. Maybe a couple hundred bucks when shopping for a new washer/dryer. It’s not life-changing, but it’s cool.

  27. I am not a democratic socialist, but it looks like I match up 98% with Hillary. I have some problems with things she has done & said in the past, but not enough to keep me from voting for her when I agree with her platform. I am still dumbfounded at the support Trump, and now Carson, have been getting. There is something fundamentally wrong with the Republican Party these days. In my opinion, you have no business getting into politics if you’re not willing to negotiate and compromise and respects others’ beliefs. I would really like to see a new moderate party develop in the middle and push the right-wingers out into the fringe.

  28. Color me surprised as I am equally Clinton and Sanders person. But Trump is 3rd!!!!! Gah

    Rand, Cruz, and Rubio at the bottom! Yeah

    To be honest I answered some questions without having read up a lot,or, having a strong opinion, on the issue.

  29. I’m definitely not a Democratic Socialist. I have a strong dislike for policies that punish, and thus disincentivize, responsible behavior, and the politicians that push such policies.

    “I am finding it really hard to get excited about any of the candidates.”

    ITA. For the presidential election, my vote won’t affect this year’s winner, so I’ll probably vote for the Libertarian again to try and keep the party on the ballot.

    I really dislike our presidential election system.

  30. @Finn — perhaps we should clarify “female” undergarments — you do that with bras or lacy/frilly stuff, and it’s shot.

    My problem is probably better characterized as the outlier. Every week, I classify as “light/scrungy”; “dark/scrungy”; “light/gentle”; and “dark/gentle”; then I consolidate (e.g., well, these darks don’t really need “gentle,” so I can toss them in with the gym stuff). And every week, I still end up with one of those categories having only one or two pieces in it. So I wash the rest, and those few things sit there until I build up enough to justify a load.

  31. @Finn, I should clarify – Undergarments = female stuff made of special materials with straps, hooks, lace, etc., which is washed on delicate and hung to dry. Sweaty cotton underwear worn for a workout would go to the regular load.

  32. I’m still a liberal and have socialist tendencies. But I fully acknowledge that Sanders is like the kid running for 8th grade president – he’ll promise you extended recess and vending machines in every hallway, but has no power to make it so. What I do hope is that his ideas spur conversation and change (I think HM thought that too).

    Hillary will likely get my vote, but in my state it doesn’t matter…

  33. I think I’m pretty much the antithesis of a socialist, but the quiz said I’m most closely aligned with Sanders, which leads me to question the quiz. Perhaps I chose “add your own stance” too many times.

  34. Did anyone else see Hillary on Kimmel last night? He had an “unfocused group” of kids with her, and given a chance to suggest policies to her, free stuff was #1.

  35. you guys sound like my husband, “you just throw the clothes in there, it takes no time”

    but you have to wait until it is done to either hang up the line dry or toss in the dryer, then wait for the dryer so it doesn’t sit in there and wrinkle, a load takes about 2 hours

  36. I find HRC’s ignorance of the dangers of cyber attacks to be troubling, and wonder if she realizes the importance of the fedgov role in cyber security.

  37. Throw the clothes in the washer, start it, go do other stuff. When it’s done, hang or spread the clothes. Retrieve when convenient or needed.

    For a few items in the delicate cycle, total elapsed time to wash ~30 minutes.

  38. Finn, based on her use of personal e-mail as secretary of state, I would say she is insufficiently aware of the role of the federal government in cybersecurity.

    But I am sympathetic if the real cause of her decision to use e-mail is “The IT bureaucrats are incompetent” instead of “I am above the laws I expect other people to follow.”

  39. I got Liberal-Tie. I’m likely to vote for Clinton, but if the Republicans could field a candidate I don’t consider extreme (with extreme defined as relative to my positions), then I would consider voting for him. I like Kasich. But my concern is that if a republican is elected, there will be little to constrain the right fringe of Congress. I agree with others on opposition to any candidate who is unwilling to compromise.

    Insomnia musings last night: there is a lot of criticism of the growth of helicopter parents and the damage its doing to the youth of today. But during the rise of the helicopters, teen pregnancy, crime, drug use, age and participation in pre-marital sex have all declined, and things like community service have gone way up. Correlation but no causation? Or are helicopter parents not death of America as we know it? Or do the risk-taking tendencies that drive the bad behavior fuel our growth? Cutting back on the caffeine today…

  40. MBT – I wonder about that with child abductions too. All time low but is it because parents are so on top of their kids now.

  41. I never have enough delicates to run a full load, so I wait and wait and go without my nice white shirt for two weeks to get a big enough load.

    Why? What will happen if you run a partial load?

  42. The poll tells me I want to vote for Bernie Sanders. Nope. I’m a committed Hillary guy forever. I truly hope to vote for her in the general election.

    But as you all know, it is Trump who has my heart in the primary (although over the past couple of days Ben has gotten so crazy, that he may just be the best republican candidate, but it is an embarrassment of riches this year). Which reminds me… I owe you all a re-cap of my attendance at the Trump rally a couple of weeks ago.

    As you might recall, the rally was held at Trump’s golf course down here by the airport. It’s now The Trump National Golf Resort and Spa or some such thing and is known locally as Doral. The Rally was slated to start at 5 at the height of already impossible rush hour traffic. By 2 p.m. local news stations were advising folks to stay away from the area because of all the traffic wanting to see Trump and clogging the streets and highways.

    I dropped Junior with someone who said she would take him where he was supposed to go and headed out. It was a good 6 miles from where I was, and about 3 hours later (no kidding) I was pulling my shitbag of a car into the Valet Parking ($40 if I recall, but I don’t remember). The regular parking lots were full, containing makes and models of cars that one does not frequently see at Doral or The Trump or whatever we’re supposed to call the airport golf course.

    The hotel workers looked slightly overwhelmed, but were polite and pointed me to where I needed to go (as if I couldn’t find it). They probably just wanted me out of the lobby as I was dressed in my gray Trump-tee shirt, black pants and sneakers. I kind of looked trashy casual.

    The ballroom was not full. They walled portions off, so it looked full, but it wasn’t. I don’t know how many people were there– it was a lot– but not “OOGE!” I truly was surprised at how many Latinos of one sort or another were there, but then again this is Miami, what did I expect? Busloads of gringos imported from Disney? And the crowd was very lively.

    I sidled up to a guy blue blazer who I figured was either security or somebody who worked for
    Trump or his campaign. It was a volunteer campaign guy. Nice guy, white, middle aged. I introduced myself as Pregnant Teen Mom and he said, “I can see” and then introduced himself. (I won’t give his name.) We talked for a while and indeed they were expecting more people.

    But he was helpful and asked me about my political history. I admitted that I was currently a democrat, but was going to definitely change my registration to republican before the primary. He took me over to a table, gave me a form and I changed it right there!

    That out of the way, the guy and I chatted for a few more minutes and I clearly demonstrated both my knowledge of Trump and my genuine enthusiasm for his campaign. Ultimately, the guy asked if I might want to do some volunteer work for Trump. “Sure!”, I said, and gave him my e-mail, expecting to hear nothing.

    Finally, after forever, Trump arrived. Sadly, I have to say that he was a little off that evening. He made his usual points, and he is really, really good and funny (until you think about it) and got in a few jabs at Jeb! and Marco. But he was less Trump than I have seen before on TV and saw on TV the next day when he went to Jacksonville. After about 45 or 50 minutes, he was done. The crowd was pretty enthused.

    Slowly, I made my way out, retrieved my car and entered the traffic. The trip home– hideously long– was almost a pleasure. I had seen in person a real life PT Barnum or Huey Long. In one way or another this has to be history– a footnote or otherwise. I was very glad I got to see it in person.

    Days later, I heard from the Trump campaign again, thanking me for coming and volunteering to work for the campaign. I am seriously considering it, because as a democrat at heart, I really want to see the republicans nominate somebody like Trump. We’ll see. I’ll keep you posted.

    Back to the topic of the day: I just throw all the clothes in the washer, put it on heavy duty, large load, come back in a couple of days and throw them in the dryer for as long as I can.

  43. I’m sure the HRC haters will shoot right back with “Hillary lies too!” but is anyone else startled by all the lies Carson tells? And who doesn’t know that the military academies are free and no one gets a special “full scholarship “?

  44. “I wonder about that with child abductions too.”

    ever since my youngest was old enough for me to leave him in the car by himself, usually for quick trips into a store / shop (pizza, dry cleaning, go inside to buy a drink at the gas station convenience mart, etc., NOT a day at the races) and even to this very day…he’s 16…I have always told him not to get kidnapped. That seems to have worked so far.

  45. Thanks for the recap, PTM. I was so excited to hear that the final Republican debate was to be in Houston. I immediately started trying to find how to get tickets, but now I’m not sure that one all happen.

    I think there is a good chance we will end up with a Republican president, so I’m hoping the nominating process will leave us with a good option.

  46. You know, the honest ones don’t succeed at that level. And really, we say we value honesty, but as it turned out the nation did NOT want to hear that Jimmy Carter had lusted in his heart. So we’ve elected a series of fabulists and liars and believers in telling-the-people-only-what’s-good-for-them ever since. I’m not sure there’s really a correlation between honesty and presidential competence, and I’m fairly sure there’s an inverse correlation between honesty and electability.

    But yeah, most of them tell clever sneaky lies that are deniable under pressure, whereas Carson’s were never going to stand up to scrutiny.

  47. I’m definitely not a democratic socialist – no surprise there. The range of topics covered in the quiz is interesting. There is only a 5% difference between Jeb and Hilary for the questions I chose to answer.

  48. I am surprised to see a few votes for Fiorina. That makes no sense to me at all – she seems like a bad manager, ignorant or a liar. There are very few scenarios that would have me on that side of the ticket (John Edwards was one) but there are about a dozen republicans I would vote for before her.

  49. Like a lot of others, I’m not very enthusiastic about this crop of candidates. I think of myself as a moderate (but I live in Mass, so YMMV), and I tend to agree most with Blue State Republicans or Red State Democrats. Of course, our primary system is set up to reward candidates that are increasingly far from the mainstream (and, just to prove how moderate I am, I think Bernie Sanders is a nut too, along with pretty much all of the Repubs running this year, with the exception of Kasich and possibly Bush and Rubio).

  50. I’m not surprised that Clinton is the top vote-getter here, and that Kasich and Sanders are in the top three. Regarding lying, I read recently that we need to have our political leaders to be good liars so they will deal effectively with our enemies. Hmm.

    At the grocery store today I saw a display that had me do a double take. I must be thinking too much about this blog, because it took a while to realize that Tote Bag Empire referred to apples in bags.

  51. “But I am sympathetic if the real cause of her decision to use e-mail is “The IT bureaucrats are incompetent” instead of “I am above the laws I expect other people to follow.”

    I don’t think it’s the former, based on what we’ve heard about her setup; apparently whoever she got to set up her server was not as competent as the fedgov IT bureaucrats.

  52. Another possibility is the IT folks HRC got to set up her email server were competent, but whoever spec’d it out was not, and she got what was spec’d.

  53. One concern with HRC is that she is so clueless WRT cyber security that she might make bad policy decisions with disastrous consequences, or not give it the attention it requires.

    Of course, the possibility of cluelessness leading to bad decisions is not exclusive to HRC, as has been pointed out above WRT Carson.

  54. CoC, WRT your 2nd poll question, I like political discussions as they pertain to our Totebag Empire.

  55. Did the West Point tell 17 year old Ben, “Come to West Point, it won’t cost you anything?” It’s certainly possible that at 17 year old kid in the pre Internet era assumed they meant free to him i.e. a full ride. Also, we all know the service academies are free but I bet the average person thinks they charge around what instate tuition would be at a flagship state university.

    Per that PBS show on the brain, each time you remember something the memory gets laid down again and can change. If you’re on the rubber chicken circuit, telling the same stories over and over again (naturally you want to tell a good story) certain facts may begin to drift and a conversation about West Point becomes an offer for a full ride, and shooting near aircraft the day before becomes we were taking fire.

    Long story short maybe folks read too much into these gaffs.

  56. Finn, I don’t think we actually need to worry about whether HRC understands cybersecurity, What matters is whether she’ll appoint a competent bureaucrat to be in change of cybersecurity, and listen to that person’s recommendations.

    From that perspective, I think she’s among the better candidates, because I think she’s more likely to appoint competent bureaucrats.

  57. Re: Carson: I agree with GreenEyes’ comment re “competent bureaucrats” — this is the thing that scares me about Carson: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2015/11/06/ben-carson-has-weird-ideas-and-makes-stuff-up-what-kind-of-president-would-he-be/?hpid=hp_no-name_opinion-card-f%3Ahomepage%2Fstory:

    “Ben Carson’s ideas about things like the pyramids, combined with what he has said about other more immediate topics, suggest not only that his beliefs are impervious to evidence but also an alarming lack of what we might call epistemological modesty. It isn’t what he doesn’t know that’s the problem, it’s what he doesn’t realize that he doesn’t know. He thinks that all the archeologists who have examined the pyramids just don’t know what they’re talking about, because Joseph had to put all that grain somewhere. He thinks that after reading something about the second law of thermodynamics, he knows more about the solar system than the world’s physicists do. He thinks that after hearing a Glenn Beck rant about the evils of Islam, he knows as much about a 1,400-year-old religion as any theologian and can confidently say why no Muslim who doesn’t renounce his faith could be president.

    So what happens when President Carson gets what he thinks is a great idea, and a bunch of “experts” tell him it would actually be a disaster? What’s he going to do?”

    No one can possibly be an expert in everything. And people who think that they are, just because they’re wicked smart in one area, scare the hell out of me. A man’s got to know his limitations and all that.

  58. “What matters is whether she’ll appoint a competent bureaucrat to be in change of cybersecurity, and listen to that person’s recommendations.”

    agreed, and not just this issue and not only HRC

  59. Ditto on the competent bureaucrats comment. I suspect I’ll be living under an HRC administration, like it or not, and I am hopeful she will appoint competent bureaucrats.

    This is something I’ve read that Reagan did well. Opinions from those who remember him?

  60. WCE,

    I wish we had more candidates like George H. W. Bush: congressman, ambassador to the UN, ambassador to China, head of the CIA, Vice President, etc.

  61. Thanks PTM. I need to take a side trip to Miami and spend an evening exchanging stories. Then I’ll seal my smoky outfit in a Ziploc bag, put it in my suitcase, and dump it into my washer when I get home for a tiny separate load. Double rinse.

    Sometimes women just make their own trouble. Either buy enough delicates to last a few weeks so that you meet your load quota or wash them by hand in the sink while a load is going. You stick em on a rack to dry either way. And if you have a favorite blouse that is always in the hamper, buy three or send it to the cleaners.

  62. “So what happens when President Carson gets what he thinks is a great idea, and a bunch of “experts” tell him it would actually be a disaster? What’s he going to do?”

    I don’t think other presidents consistently listen to the “experts” advising them. Insiders report that Obama is stubbornly sticking to his “deeply rooted assumptions” instead of listening to his advisors regarding recommendations for Syria and Russia.
    http://www.politico.com/story/2015/10/syria-obama-putin-russia-discord-214677

    BTW, I have NO interest in seeing Carson as our next president.

    I can’t find it now, but I thought I saw a poll in the last day or so that showed a slim majority of Americans support expanded military action in Syria.

  63. We do have candidates like GHW Bush, Rhett. All of them, except maybe Kaisch, Bernie, Hillary, Lindsay Graham. One could add George Pataki or Chris Christie, I suppose, if one wanted.

    If IRCC HW served as a congressman for a term, got brig britches, ran for senate, lost soundly and from then on it was political appointments, such as where can we put him? That was it until he ran for President. Yeah, he was ambassador to China for a few years (so was Huntsman), CIA director for a year or so too (somebody had to fill in for Bill Casey), Chair of the RNC (should we nominate Reince Priebus?) and I think he did something with the UN for a couple of months. His bouncing around with no discernable upward promotion for years until Reagan picked him as VP doesn’t really speak well of him.

  64. In bizarro world as I am listening to Dr. Carson trying to emphasize that he was truly violent on occasions as a young person but that the media did not talk to the right people to confirm his statements. What?

  65. “In bizarro world as I am listening to Dr. Carson trying to emphasize that he was truly violent on occasions as a young person but that the media did not talk to the right people to confirm his statements. What?”

    Why I’ve enjoyed politics this year – perfect examples of “truth is in the eye of the beholder”.

    I’m out like trout people. Gotta meet a Totebagger or 2 and squish babies who are 6 months younger than Baby Rhode but the exact same size. Want to take a bet on how many people ask if (1) they are triplets and/or (2) look at my like I’m lying or ask me if I’m starving my kid?

  66. I have a lot more respect for George HW Bush now vs. when he was in office. I love Bill, but I wonder what would have happened if Bush Sr had another term.

    It’s funny that you mentioned Reagan because I’ve been going through A LOT of old papers that I saved since we renovated. I am trying to throw out more stuff. I found some tickets that I had for his second inauguration because I was in DC at that time. It was canceled because it was so cold, and i saved the tickets.

  67. Lauren, I recall going to Reagan’s first inauguration but I was so far back I couldn’t really see or hear anything.

    I am a democrat, but I voted Bill once. Second time, I was mad at him for a bunch of things including DOMA, welfare reform (which worked and I was wrong) and a few other things. I never voted for Obama. I would have voted for Hillary, but McCain I thought was better than a first term non-involved senator (sound like Rubio anyone) and then Romney cuz I didn’t believe anything he said.

    And I remain furious at Bill Clinton for introducing BJs to polite society and assuring young people that sucking some guy’s private part was not sex. I sure thought it was!

  68. PTM, thanks for the report!

    Fred, I also tell my kids “Don’t get abducted! It will ruin my weekend.” So far so good.

    PTM – I hate Bill Clinton because he allowed that young girl to languish when he could have redeemed her character so many times since simply by saying “I was the adult, I was the one in charge. I was the President of the United States. The onus was on ME not on an impressionable young woman.” She has no real life to speak of.

  69. I am not a democratic socialist. I am thinking of a Kasich/Rubio ticket, perhaps? Or maybe the other way around. I am also a Christie fan, but I think his time may have passed.

    Rhode – I like your comment about Bernie Sanders being a kid making unsustainable promises while running for student council. That is exactly what I think about Donald Trump. Sure, wouldn’t it be great to get rid of all of the problems in the country – he will just magically make it happen!

    It seems like Trump’s poll numbers are waning, and I am hoping that Carson’s will soon. Then perhaps the more moderate candidates can focus on each other.

  70. I’m not voting for Hillary, but the rest of my state will even if she eats a live baby on TV.

    As a lawyer with experience in electronic productions, I would never, ever allow a client to delete records after a subpoena or reformat a server. You might as well buy yourself an orange jumpsuit and a plane ticket to Leavenworth. She’s a crook, and this is covering up something much worse because it wouldn’t be worth the risk otherwise.

    I’ve now contributed my controversial view for the year :)

  71. ‘ Then perhaps the more moderate candidates can focus on each other.”

    What moderate candidates? Pataki? He was fairly moderate for a three-term republican New York governor. Christie? Maybe, if you don’t believe what he says. Certainly not Marco who doesn’t believe in climate change (he only needs to drive half an hour from his home to see it) and believes the earth is 6000 years old, give or take say a decade. Jeb! was a very, very conservative autocratic governor, in the pocket of developers and Big Sugar. The portion of the Everglade that is left is dotted by nuclear plants, airports and thus and such and Lord knows, he will move heaven and hell to 1) get his brother elected and 2) make sure that nobody can exercise a right to die (Terry Schiavo).. Kaisch, despite working for investment firms, was very credible as a Fox News talk show host. Nobody knows what Carly thinks, other than she has a pretty face which we are forbidden to talk about– even the ladies on The View. I can’t think of any of the others that the main stream republicans might find moderate. Maybe Bobby because he seemed to care about NO and surrounding areas post-Katrina, but he has been madly backtracking since then.

  72. After watching some of the most recent debate, I think I joined the Rubio camp, and Kasich slipped down to second. If I had to bet, that’s my prediction for a winning ticket. The way Rubio brilliantly dispatched Jeb’s lame, focus group-advised attack is exactly what will happen in a general debate against Hillary, simply because she never sounds authentic when she makes comments like that. His quick responses, his youth, his energy, his biography will all make her look even older and more Establisment’y. Mark my words, we can come back to this thread in 10 months, but if he’s the nominee, that will be the narrative after the debates.

    The responses on this thread from those who “will vote for Hillary but have serious issues with her/don’t really trust or like her” tell me that she is not someone who can overcome what’s typically an uphill battle already to win a third consecutive Presidential term for a party. The simple fact is that an incumbent President is at a big advantage; his Party’s nominee as a successor starts at a disadvantage. If your voters aren’t really excited about you, you’ll get the Totebag/Civic Duty voters, but too many others will just stay home.

    As more people start paying attention and primary voting draws nearer, Trump and Carson will fade. At the same time, I would not discount Martin O’Malley just yet. He has a lot to offer in the More-Likeable-Than-Hillary-But-Not-Crazy-Socialist box. If I were comfortable playing the political betting markets, I would try to make some money on him.

    One final comment: I wish when people remark that the GOP, or a specific candidate has “extremist views,” the person would be specific about the viewpoint and, even better, link a national Gallup poll that shows what percentage of the country agrees with it. I think a lot of what people call “extreme” is a lot more mainstream than you care to admit.

    OT, we were supposed to go camping this weekend, but between the unpredictable weather and the darkness, we’ve opted for a resort with an indoor pool in Williamsburg. There were good last-minute prices.

  73. On my way home from Blue Spirit yoga retreat in Nosara, Costa Rica. It was seriously just like the brochure. Insanely beautiful. Highly recommended. I took my daughter-in-law and we had some good bonding time. Not looking forward to the Colorado snow.

  74. Milo,

    The 80k boat, the lease on the Audi Q7, he stopped paying his mortgage, blew through an $800k book advance and two years later was so desperate for cash he liquidated almost all of his retirement accounts paying a $25,000 penalty. And that’s just the start of it.

  75. Milo – I am going to submit a post on why I fear any Republican as president (it would be silly to say “not cast my vote for” in my home state since I have no meaningful vote after the primary for anything but local office) given the current makeup of the other two branches of government. It is not about socialist agenda or foreign policy or whether I want to have a beer with anyone.

  76. I think Rubio has 3 problems:

    1. Total financial trainwreck.
    2. Immigration
    3. Young guy, great speaker, inexperienced and short on accomplishments. We usually don’t elect what we just had in office.

  77. rocky, thank you for sharing info. I’m glad you had a nice vacation. It looks great, and i think your post just solved a dilemma that I’ve been having with my college friends about a place to celebrate our big bday number.

    I caved today and I bought the segway as an early holiday gift. it is exactly one month until Hanukkah, and it is still warm here so I bought one. I just hope that DD really understands what it means when she receives tiny gifts chocolate gelt during the 8 nights vs a real gift in December.

  78. I have issues with all the candidates – Rubio reminds me of John Edwards somewhat. I was thinking of all the people who might have run – Sanford was one of them, but one’s own actions can torpedo the boat.

    RMS – I am glad you had a good time and bonded with DIL. That time is priceless and maybe it can be something you both do on a periodic basis.

    Lauren – if you are comfortable sharing which model did you get ? We went to a bookstore but the kids were looking at the tech toys – I would say that they have outgrown all we saw – even things like app controlled mega robots, which caught DS’s eye.

  79. “I have issues with all the candidates” — Yup, no perfect candidates. Based on the polling here, I’ve confirmed I’m probably one of the most conservative here, in case that wasn’t clear before now. :)

    The other day I saw a kid on our street riding his segway board with a drone hanging on the back of his backpack. It made me feel both old and young at the same time. I expect both boards and drones will be on lots of holiday gift lists. Now I’m wondering if new or existing laws will start to regulate how segways are used. Are they allowed on both sidewalks or streets? Drone regulations are in flux, from what I read.

  80. I wouldn’t rule out Christie, even though he’s dropped to second tier for the upcoming debate. Some pundits were speculating that his recent remarks on addiction that went viral could be a signal that he is on track for a turnaround. Despite his blunt speaking style, he is more charismatic than most other candidates and his politics are more palatable than those of the other Republican candidates.

  81. Christie is too liberal for the Republican base, and too Jersey mobster for your middle American voter. Plus, if people in the midwest actually start paying attention to him, trafficgate witll come up in a hurry. One thing you don’t mess around with, in the minds of voters in the middle of the country, is traffic.

  82. It made me feel both old and young at the same time.

    I was standing behind a woman (not a girl, a stylishly dressed woman) at CVS and the pharmacist asked for her date of birth. “8/19/93,” she said. Ahhhhhh! When did I get so old?

  83. I expect both boards and drones will be on lots of holiday gift lists.

    Don’t forget the Go Pro cameras to capture the fun that’s being had with the boards and the drones ! I should be older and wiser by now, but I am growing older and sillier.

  84. we got the swagway. It seems to be $399. my neighbor is here now, and she just told me that she waited a month to order one from swagway. I am a little concerned about quality because some neighbors already had issues. i decided to purchase from a local B & M store in case I had trouble, but they actually handed me a separate flyer that outlines the return policy for this item – essentially NO returns to store. I used Amex, so I will go through my credit card if we run into a problem.

  85. It was great! It was the in, hip, fun kids, but they were nice and they included us. Me and DIL were AP nerds, but we were included. We sang and danced and drank too much. And did yoga. And the howler monkeys were cute for 10 minutes and after that they were obnoxiously loud. I’d post this hilarious picture where DIL looked darling and I looked like a drunk drowned rat, but it would violate her privacy. Massages and zip-lining and more massages and the infinity pool where the salinity was 1/3 the salinity of HUMAN TEARS, it says so in the brochure.

  86. I got stuck behind some kid on a segway this afternoon as I returned to my house from the store. Stupid kid was just cruising down the middle of my street, forcing me to creep along behind him. Someone needs to come up with some regulations on those things. Unfortunately, they are too wide for our sidewalks so the kids ride in the street. Without helmets, or thoughts apparently, of the traffic.

  87. It is interesting that are towns are so close, but the boards are being used here in parking lots, school playgrounds, fields etc. I haven’t seen any in town yet, or even on sidewalks. I do see everyone without helmets too. It is really disturbing because the kids are always using them for bikes and scooters. I am not sure why this no helmet thing is going on.

  88. In our town, I think the parking lots would be even less safe! The school lots are either nonexistent or in heavy use by cars into the evening (lots of sports activities), and the commercial lots are slammed all the time. We do have some fields but I have never seen one of those hovercrafts in a field – I thought they had to have pavement to work. The sidewalks are too narrow. We are near the Bronx River pathway – I wonder if people are using them there? Perhaps not since they are motorized – they might not be permitted.

  89. My oldest son makes fun of the hovercraft – he says that the kids riding on them remind him of zombies. My daughter, predictably, wants one.

  90. Out of curiousity, I tried to look up regulations for these devices, and found little specific to the US. Britain does not allow them on roads, California will allow them with helmets, and United Arab emirates will allow them in “designated areas” only. Not much else. I am guessing the laws haven’t caught up.

  91. We have a group of neighborhood boys who like to skateboard up and down our street, which is relatively quiet and narrow with a hill. But we do have some drivers who go too fast on our quiet street. I wonder if these boys will switch to hoverboards.

    These kids need to be kept in line. For a while they thought our driveway was a suitable place to practice moves. Even worse, they used our front yard steps as well as our neighbor’s to do tricks. I had to literally tell these kids to get off my lawn.

  92. Coc – we had the same issue but then, one of the Dads built skateboard ramps in his workshop, so now the kids use those to practice on. They can move these to each others driceways so now they are on their own property.

  93. it is interesting how something like skateboarding or more modern updates has been sanitized and suburbanized and even turned into a family activity. The whole point was to be reckless away from home in a pack of like minded kids, trespassing and doing tricks on city streets, and when not showing off able to travel far and fast with a small portable transport device. As it became more prevalent and the kids got younger there were dedicated installations in public parks in warmer climates. Now dads build ramps in the big driveway or like the auto ad take the kids on a family outing to an abandoned amusement park.

  94. “I was standing behind a woman (not a girl, a stylishly dressed woman) at CVS and the pharmacist asked for her date of birth. “8/19/93,” she said. Ahhhhhh! When did I get so old?”

    Seriously. With this latest crop of graduates, I am now working with people who weren’t born yet when I graduated HS. I think that officially makes me middle-aged. And the circle of life continues…

  95. it is interesting how something like skateboarding or more modern updates has been sanitized and suburbanized and even turned into a family activity.

    That’s because our generation grew up doing them so we want to share them with our kids. Video games are another good example. It was unheard of for our parents to play with us, but we play them with our kids.

  96. “I liked Google Doodle today on Hedy Lamarr”

    That’s Hedley!

    (Blazing Saddles reference, for the uncultured.)

  97. Back to the HJT (hi, Jack topic), our county government went through this a while back when Razor scooters first became popular. I suggested to my councilperson that they more generally address all potential road/sidewalk users, including motorized wheelchairs, motorized scooters (which were, at the time, not yet widely available), and Segways (which at the time had received publicity but had not yet been released for sale).

    Of course, the council chose to ignore my suggestion and instead only addressed the scooters.

    WRT kids not wearing helmets, I call that evolution.

  98. DD, I understand the process, but how in heavens name do tweens and teens ever get a chance to explore and enjoy stuff without having their parents all over it? I am less concerned about maturity and self reliance in the context of whether 8 year olds can tie their shoes or 13 year olds navigate public transportation or 16 year olds do their own laundry than I am about the process of separation and formation of adult identity.

  99. Meme,

    I think your question directly tires into today’s topic. In my world (two kids in high school, one in middle school), it seems that 1) stakes are incredibly high and 2) there is no margin for error, and 3) adults are involved in EVERYTHING, and so, letting kids do the reasonable, developmentally appropriate things, including making stupid mistakes, means that they will miss out on most events. Which means that high school is high stress because the average GPA to get into the land grants and good state schools is around a 4.0.

  100. Meme, they find stuff that their parents aren’t interested in – that’s how you “rebel” for lack of a better word. You can’t use skateboarding as a form of rebellion when that’s what your parents did.

  101. The article linked in the OP starts by citing “‘an average of $10,000 per year ” for elite private high schools.

    Around here, those schools cost upwards of $20k, and I know in other parts of the country they cost well above that.

    So I’m wondering, where do elite private high schools cost under $10k/year? There have to be a lot of them to bring the overall average down to $10k.

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