Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Homecoming at Albion

Both the Wife and I attended Albion College, the home of Liberal Arts at Work. This year was the Wife's 5 year reunion, so we decided to venture back to campus for the reunion and homecoming.

We were of course late leaving...I'm blaming the Wife on this one, and arrived with barely enough time to go to the requisite receptions. We started off at the education department reception, which was odd, because it had moved buildings. I guess you can tell that you are not a student anymore when a department moves buildings and you don't know. So after some wandering we ate cookies and chatted with some current students in the Ed department. Funny enough, one of the students there is the current president of APO, and she informed us that the chapter is still going strong.

Then we headed over to the Kappa Delta reception. This was interesting because the chapter is trying to recreate all the family lines and had GIANT posters up trying to get the lines all connected. So if any readers out there were KD's and have not provided your information to the chapter, please let them know.

Our stomachs then beckoned us to the DOW for lunch (this was a hard choice over Lopez, but we thought more convenient). I was ecstatic to see that the boston creme pies in a cup were still there and had to restrict myself to eating just one. Those things were handy in college. The best part came when the British Eighth came marching in. See the picture below. All in all a great lunch.

Then there was the football game, which Wife abandoned me for. She decided, probably rightfully so, that exploring the campus would be more fun. Unfortunately Albion lost 13-12, but at least it was a close game. We then wandered over to check out the new science complex. HOLY COW! They did an exceptional job integrating all the new buildings. I remember when Palenske and Putnam looked a lot like my Junior High, full of institutional painted cinder block. These were beautifully done with paneling and all kinds of scary science stuff. Below is a picture Wife took of the beautiful lobby.

We then ended up at the Alumni Dinner at Cascarelli's. It was nice to see people, but it was kind of lame. There just was not that many people there. our opinion is that just 5 years out a lot of people are just finishing up graduate school and probably do not have the funds or time off to come back. We did get a really fancy Albion pen, and unlimited mediocre pizza! At elast there was good conversation with the people that we sat with. See picture below. It was a busy day, but overall worth the time and drive.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Campaign Suspension and Letterman

So the news today is that John McCain is going to be suspending his campaign to take care of the economic crises. Personally I see this as a desperate ploy by someone who is trailing in the polls and whose campaign loses momentum seemingly every day. Some will argue that this is bold leadership, but really, this problem is getting "solved" one way or another, with or without McCain. Remember this guy just said two weeks ago that "the fundamentals of the economy are strong," and now he wants to suspend his campaign to address the economic crisis. Also, no one has mentioned this, but could this be a cash saving measure??

The pressure he is applying to switch the debate day is also a desperate move. He comes off as whining and unprepared. Why suspend a debate, is that not the exact kind of forum to discuss these matters? He is the one who wanted more debates and forums, and now he wants to rearrange the schedule.

Beyond all that McCain apparently stiffed Letterman last night, but found time for Katie Couric. The LA Times has a great article on that blow up, and Letterman's response. It has got to be one of the greatest responses ever to being stood up.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Newsflash... McCain Invented the Blackberry

One of John McCain's top economic advisers was recently answering questions about what John McCain knows about the economy. Douglas Holtz-Eakin -- in a response to reporters’ questions about what McCain did at the Senate Commerce Committee to understand how markets work -- whipped out his BlackBerry. "He did this," he replied. “Telecommunications of the United States is a premier innovation in the past 15 years, comes right through the Commerce committee so you're looking at the miracle John McCain helped create and that's what he did."

So now we have John McCain inventing the BlackBerry. This is of course from someone who does not use email or a computer. But he revolutionized telecommunications in this country. All this on the same day that Carly Fiorina said that neither Palin or McCain were qualified to run Hewlett Packard. She is supposed to be speaking FOR them not against them. They want our trust to run the NATIONAL economy when one of their top business supporters does not think they are qualified to run her company...hmmmm. Welcome to the chaos that is the McCain campaign.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Ike's Wrath or Human Idiocy

I have to say, that from the relative safety of the Upper Midwest, all this hurricane stuff is pretty theoretical. We NEVER get winds of over 100 mph for sustained periods of times. We NEVER receive 7-10" of rain in a day. We do occasionally get tornadoes, but they are brief and fleeting. The pure sustained destructive power of a hurricane is something that I have never experianced in my life.

However, I do consider my self intelligent enough to know that if people with advanced radar and degrees much higher then my own tell me to "Get out or face probable death" that I am going to get the heck on up out of there. I swear humans have a death wish. This is a quote from an article on CNN. "Galveston had ordered evacuation of the island, but City Manager Steve LeBlanc said about 40 percent of the city's 57,523 residents chose to stay. "It's unfortunate that the warnings that we sent out were not heeded," he said"

WHAT........40 percent! Are you joking. This is an ISLAND that is just above sea level.

I am sick and tired of my tax dollars going to pay for the rescue and rebuilding of people and areas that do not deserve to be. You want to build you house on an island in a hurricane prone area, fine, free country. But do not come whining to the government to help rebuild your home. If you avoid the "mandatory" evacuation, fine, but you better be ready for the bill when the Coast Guard Chopper has to come grab you off the roof. Nothing like the idea that you might get stuck with bill for helicopter fuel use to get you to heed that evacuation order. Especially considering that the Coast Guard HH-60 uses 16.56 lbs of fuel per MINUTE. By my not so advanced math, that means roughly 15 dollars a minute in fuel costs.

We need to take care of our people, but we also need to reward people for making smart decisions. I am not saying we let these people die out there. I am just saying that there needs to be logical consequences for your actions.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Let's Get Ready To Rumble

I thoroughly enjoy this time in an election year. This post-convention, lets actually talk about the issues, debate filled few months. Up until now, despite all the coverage and the bantering, it was the preseason. If the conventions this year proved anything, it is that the conventions themselves are still very relevant. On the Republican side we had the surprise VP pick, and subsequent speech that has everyone talking about the future of the GOP. On the Democratic side, we saw a historic moment, as an African-American accepted the nomination at an open convention on the anniversary of MLK's famous speech. (I am positive that just an accidental coincidence...HA).

There are still questions on both the candidates; is Obama experianced enough and not just talk, and will McCain just bring us 4 more years of Bush? Does Palin have the experience to step in as President is what is arguably the best chance of that happening in a long time? Is Joe Biden just another Washington insider? All of these questions will be mulled over and we get to watch several debates. I am particularly interested in watching the VP debate. I am also excited because as a Michigander, the candidates seem to be spending a lot of time here. Maybe I will be able to catch them in person.

Let the fun begin!