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September 27, 2008

Lesson # 102 from last night's debate:

One of many reasons Obama's my president:

obama-michelle1.jpg

'Cause if he tries to do anything stupid, Michelle will put him back in line.

Come on America, put these two in the White House.

Blowout-10.jpg

October 23, 2008

Filler.

Sorry about my poor blogging performance, I've been real busy, grad school really has it in for me. In the absence of a long and meaningful post (I'm trying to complete a take-home midterm in my math class), here's a picture of Barack Obama several Halloweens ago:

obama_pirate.jpg

November 5, 2008

memories of elections past

The first election I can remember is Bush I/Dukakis. It was 1988 and I was in kindergarden. You know that Scholastic Votes thing, where kids across the country vote for president? I voted for Dukakis, because somehow I knew that my dad supported him. My elementary school boyfriend Bruce Potter went for Bush, because he likes elephants better than donkeys. I wonder who Bruce is voting for these days.

I was older for Bush/Clinton. I remember "It's the economy, stupid;" I remember Clinton's brother being a druggie or something, and I remember "I didn't inhale". I also remember watching the TV on election night, because whichever network we were watching kept playing a song called "My Guy". Nothing you can do can tear me away from my guy... nothing you can do 'cause i'm stuck like glue to my guy... I'm not sure whether it was a parody or a real song that fit the event. Oh yeah, and Ross Perot was there, too.

Clinton/Dole, I remember Dole falling off a stage somewhere, talking about the Brooklyn Dodgers, and talking about himself in the third person. I also remember Tennessee Governor Lamar Alexander in the primarys - he had a flannel shirt on and looked like a real American. Don't remember much about election night at all.

Bush/Gore. I was 17 for this one. I remember my dad being a big Bradley fan in the primaries, and McCain being a really exciting guy to watch before he got smeared for that illegitimate black baby. I stayed up all night watching them call and uncall the election, and I was pretty distraught when they handed it to Bush. What might have been...

Bush/Kerry. My first presidential voting experience. I was in Iowa for the caucuses, and after seeing Kerry speak about foreign policy, I caucused for him. Sort of. There was kind of a game going on to try to weaken Howard Dean, who my dad liked, so I got shuffled in Kucinich in the end by the Kerry leader in my precinct. i remember poor Kucinich being in Ames almost every weekend, doing things like breakfast at peoples' houses. Dean had a big rally in the Memorial Union, and we had to be packed in there and wait for at least an hour for him to show. In the end it was a 20 minute stump speech, pretty boring. I think I saw Edwards too, but I can't remember. Max Weinberg playing a concert with Poison Control Center at la Boheme was another highlight, with the sets broken up by one of John Kerry's hot young nephews talking about why JK is such a great guy.

I was in Albuquerque for the convention. I heard Clinton's excellent speech on the radio in my car; Obama spoke right before him and I didn't hear it until some time later.

I remember much less from the general election - swift boats, etc. I guess Iowa went Bush. I was in the computer lab in Sweeney Hall, working on some engineering project or another. I remember following the Ohio voting, and watching it break for Bush, stick a fork in this one. Incredible scenes.

This year was so long. Bill Clinton in Davis, Teddy and I scoring front row seats and wishing he could run again. He was really positive at the time - no attacks on Obama, just a yay Democrats kind of tone. Hearing Edwin and the automation engineers babble on about Ron Paul all day from over the wall of my cube. It's been so long that I can't really believe it's all over and the good guys finally won.

obama.jpg

November 11, 2008

red state, blue dot

Note: I promise this is the last you'll hear about the election from me for a while.

Nebraska is red. They don't get much redder. Check out the stadium on autumn Saturdays:

Memorial%20Stadium.jpg

I remember a high school friend's basement. Her stepfather had renovated it into his Husker fan-den. It was a little creepy - red carpet, red furniture, football pictures all over the walls. The toilet was red and the wallpaper had some kind of Husker pattern all over it.

When the Nebraska primary rolled around last spring, I my dad told me that he was worried he'd be the only Democrat willing to show his face. He was wrong - it was standing room only and Obama kicked ass. That was true all over Nebraska, and the fact that the Dems had to fight hard in the primaries in the red red state of Nebraska is one of many reasons this is true:

electoral%20map.JPG

See that little blue dot in Nebraska? That's District 2. Nebraska splits its electoral votes; two for the winner of the state, and one for the winner of each district. I'm proud of you, Nebraska, and you're one reason this is true:

usanumber1.jpg

Eat that, Steve's neighbor.

April 23, 2009

Giant leap

Caution: the views expressed on in this blog are the views of Katie, and not necessarily completely thought out, logical, or rational. They have likely been conceived of within the last hour.

I saw Al Gore speak today; he was at the groundbreaking ceremony for the Richard Blum Center for Developing Economies. He was looking good - despite the red face he got each time the UCB Chancellor him "Our 46th President" (three times, corrected more hilariously each time. "Better to call the vice president the president than vice versa!" Maybe not in this case, Mr. Chancellor; I think that's a soft spot...).

Al was talking about how there is a lot of poverty and income disparity, and how we can't solve our environmental problems until the poverty problems are also solved. Then he let out the worst analogy in the whole climate change - you could see it coming from a mile away. "You know, it was just 48 years ago that Kennedy challenged America to land a man on the moon and bring him back safely, within 10 years. 8 years later, blah blah one small step." So obviously we can solve this climate change problem we have, if we just want it bad enough.

He also pointed out that since the industrial revolution, our society had turned much fossil fuel into much atmospheric carbon dioxide. That's true, but it wasn't what I expected him to say. I thought he was going to say that we'd turned all that fuel into knowledge, infrastructure, civilization, and population. Humans have proven themselves exceptionally capable of that - fossil fuels made the industrial revolution possible, which made the scientific advances of the 20th century and the society we live in possible. It made the moon shot possible. We're great at turning fossil fuel into knowledge and stuff and rearranged molecules.

We are not so practiced at taking knowledge and turning it into stuff. We have a society that can support cities and skyscrapers and salads and big populations, and that society is made of fossil fuel. We've learned a lot, but we have not learned to make stuff from nothing, or from orders of magnitude less than we do now.

Do you understand what I'm trying to say here? The moon shot was a simple matter of taking fossil fuel and turning it into a rocket ship and some mathematical equations that could get it to the moon and back. The energy problem is a matter of learning to make all the things our society can't do without, with very little. That is a problem of incomparable magnitude, and suggesting that it's not is irresponsible, naive, or a plain lie.

Who knows though, the moon shot only took 8 years. Maybe if Al had been prez, we'd have this shit figured out by now.


May 21, 2009

"California may be too big to fail"

I wish I had something intelligent to say about California residents' resounding refusal to do its representative government's job for them, but I don't. So I'll refer you to Hank's excellent discussion of the issue:

http://bucket-o-hank.blogspot.com/2009/05/bust-statewide-special-bucket-lection.html

Good thing California is too big to fail. Too bad our high school aren't! Ba-dum ching!

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