A Poll For Every Perspective

I was interested in UJ’s post, below, on the AP Poll on health care.  The most recent Pew Research survey, on the other hand, shows sharply declining support for the health care reform proposals since September, and particularly a decline in the number of people who — like UJ — strongly support the reform proposals.

What does this discrepancy mean?  Who knows?  It may be as simple as how the questions were framed, or the definition and contours of the populations that were asked the questions by the two polls — or it may be that polls just aren’t a very good gauge of what people actually think, when you are talking about something complicated like health care reform.

Splendor (And Questions) In The Grass

California — the state that has legislated pretty much everything through ballot initiatives — may well have three marijuana legalization initiatives on the 2010 ballot.

California’s medical marijuana business culture is interesting.  I was unaware that,as the article reports, there are “hundreds of medical marijuana dispensaries across the state” as a result of the 1996 ballot initiative that allows individuals to smoke marijuana for medical purposes.  How are those businesses regulated by the state, if at all?  And, given the fact that marijuana is illegal under federal law, how do those businesses operate?  Do they file tax returns that identify their business as “medical marijuana dispensary”?  How do they get the marijuana that they dispense, and how do they determine if individuals have a legitimate medical need for their product?

Maybe we Have Turned the Corner

This article shows that public opinion can change in a heart beat. Public support for the president’s Healthcare reform legislation is up from the lows (see Bob’s September 28 blog) and its due to the president’s “media blitz of interviews and public appearances”. The poll also suggests that the Democrats should go it alone and try to pass Healthcare reform on their own. Stay tuned ……

Eight Isnt Enough but How Many Is ?

It’s just my opinion, but I’m alittle bothered by people pressing President Obama to make a quick decision on whether or not to send additional troops into Afganistan, after all we have been there for eight years with not much to show for it. I’ll bet the Afghans probably see us as occupants and supporters of a corrupt and ineffective government. 

As this article points out the president met with Congress on Tuesday and had a brief exchange with John McCain during the meeting. It’s clear based on their exchange and Senator McCain’s comments on Larry King last night that he would have applied the rubber stamp to McChrystal’s request and would have sent the additional troops had he been elected president.

This is a BIG reason why I voted for Obama over McCain. I want my president to review all options and not just rubber stamp requests for more troops. I found some excerpts of a talk McCain gave recently where he thinks we should double or triple the number of troops in Afghanistan while we are still fighting another war in Iraq. The “at what cost” and “with how many casualties” questions posed are both valid and should be taken into account when making a decision.


The article goes on to say that America will not pull out of Afghanistan at this time and I agree with that decision for now. If we were to pull out and have no stake in the matter then it would be hard to keep diplomatic pressure on Pakistan to continue to root out Al-qaida on their side of the border where it’s been reported that Al-qaida and Osama Bin Laden are now located. 

I’m concerned too about the leak of the McCrystal report which was to be the military’s confidential assessment to the PRESIDENT of the current situation in Afghanistan. By this document being made public it puts an undue burden on the president if he decides to act contrary to McCrystal’s assessment. It also provides ammunition for the president’s political enemies if he opts for lower troop levels or no troop increase. I can already see the Republicans pointing to the president as being weak on National Security.

So good luck Mr. President, the hand you have been dealt is a crappy one, but I know that you are weighing all options and I will be supportive of whatever you decide to do.

What Is Art?

Here’s another example of the kind of mindless weirdness that, in my view, gives “performance art” a bad name.

The Apology Project

The Apology Project

Is this art? What possible benefit can come from “artists” wearing paper bags, apologizing to people for no reason, and obstructing pedestrian traffic? Would it be “performance art” to have obese people on hospital gurney hurl Frosted Flakes at passing cars? How about if people dressed like Members of Congress ran in a large circle near the Reflecting Pool, flapping their arms and cawing like crows?

Those who can’t do, teach. Those who can’t draw, paint, or sculpt, do “performance art.”