Thanks!

Thanks to Doug Hance and the Hoya for writing a nice article about students who blog at Georgetown!

Check out the article here.
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Cadillac Deval

So this is a pretty interesting story about the rise and failures of Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick. For those of you who aren't familiar with Deval, he rode into the governor's office in a similar fashion as Barack Obama (whom he presently campaigns for) seems to be cruising towards the Democratic nomination. He, like Obama, is a bright, eloquent, African-American Harvard Law School graduate who mastered the art of promising much and saying little. Like Obama, he picked up an oh-s0-clever slogan: "Together We Can". Wouldn't that just make you want to run out and vote for him? Well, given that we're talking about Massachusetts here, it worked. Deval, lacking in any sort of executive or political experience defeated Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healy (R) by a large margin.

Since that time, Deval...well...hasn't done very much. First, he spent $10,000 of taxpayer money on new drapes for his office. Then he upgraded Mitt Romney's old Ford Crown Vic to a new Cadillac (hence, Cadillac Deville/Deval). Next up, he proposed that individual cities and towns be allowed to selectively raise (not lower) taxes in order to increase revenues. Thankfully, this effort failed. After 16 years of Republican governorship in Massachusetts, it looks like Taxachusetts may be making a comeback. He takes credit for Mitt Romney's innovative health insurance plan and complains about a soaring budget deficit, while Romney balanced the budget after facing a multi-billion dollar deficit and left with a $700 million surplus (while cutting taxes). Most recently, Deval lost a battle to allow three resort-style casinos on Indian land in Massachusetts. He grossly inflated job and revenue estimates that would be gained from the project, rightfully causing citizens and legislators to doubt his credibility. While ignoring the serious traffic and gambling addiction concerns of the casinos, he also failed to note how many times Indian reservations have pulled a fast one on states and gipped them of the originally planned revenues. As usual, Deval's efforts failed.

The humor in this whole situation has been watching the battle between Speaker Sal DiMasi (D), who has continually used his longstanding experience and position to derail the governors proposals. They're now even publicly criticizing each other. You know you're in trouble when you're being stopped left and right by a nearly 100% Democratic legislature.

The one positive thing I have to say about Cadillac Deval regards his public availability. Each week he hosts a radio show with two local talk radio DJs where he accepts calls from anyone and attempts to answer their questions and concerns. From what I've heard, the calls certainly aren't framed and he takes flak from a caller from time to time. Hosting some sort of radio show is something that I've always said I plan to do if I ever find my way into politics. Officials elected to represent the people should at the very least be in contact with their people.

Overall, though, it's apparent that leading a state is turning out to be a bit more difficult that "Together We Can"....
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Word of the Week

Word of the week:

Simulacrum- n., a slight, unreal, or superficial likeness or semblance; an effigy, image, or representation.

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Marine Mom

This is one of the most touching videos I have ever seen. Unfortunately, you have to scroll down on the right-hand column to the clip titled "Marine Mom Adopts Platoon". It's worth all 3 minutes and 17 seconds. This woman from Rockland, MA, filled with faith and selflessness, is a true American hero. Words can't give justice to her or the story, but briefly, the video from CBS News is about a widowed mother who lost one of her nine children in Iraq last year. This St. Patrick's Day, she used her son's death benefit to host his Marine platoon for the holiday in order to remember him and give these men a break from their daily routine.

May God bless this wonderful woman and her fallen son this Easter and comfort her in her times of grief, questioning, and sorrow.

Happy Easter everyone.
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Obama's Latest

So its difficult for me to blog in a timely fashion when I'm on break because my routine is all out of whack. But, a lot has been going on lately. As I'm sure everyone knows, the fiery racism of Barack Obama's pastor Rev. Wright was made public and has been flashed all over TV and the Internet. He claims that Americans deserved to die in 9-11 because of all the bloodshed that we have caused in our history. He claims that the US government invented HIV to wipe out the black population. He advocates black separatism. Clearly, this guy is in a whole different league of racists than the whites he hates so much. Instead of spitting hatred, he should work on solving the real problems in his own black community- like the fact that nearly seventy (yes, thats right...seven-zero, seventy) percent of black children are born out of wedlock, like the fact that there are almost more black men in jail than in college, like the fact that black popular culture revers the gangster life of guns, violence, and abusing women. He could put his sharp tongue to work focusing on these real life ills that are hampering black America.

Now what about his effect on the Obama campaign? Well, Barack really blew this one. He's trying his hardest to win the votes of a very skeptical, important voter group- white, middle-aged, blue-collar Americans. Thus far, he's been struggling to do so. After this controversy, its unlikely that he'll see this group, which is understandably sick of hearing about affirmative action and other favoritism issues, running towards him in support. It's unfortunate for Barack that he's suffering politically from the actions of someone else, but in reality, he deserves to. This "man of unity" has sit idly by over the decades listening to this racist rant and rave against whites (well, thats the case now that he finally admits that he has heard him say such words) without raising a word against him. He hasn't written anything about it, talked about it with anyone we know, or challenged Wright in any sense. So, it seems to me that Barack is either sympathetic to Wright's views, or too meek to rise up in opposition- both qualities that American's don't want in the White House.

Also, I don't know much about the following, other than what my mom told me when I woke up this morning. But, apparently Barack described his white grandmother as a "typical white woman" yesterday when referring to her discomfort with blacks. Way to go Barack. Dig that grave a little deeper why don't you?

And finally, in a last ditch effort for some positive publicity, Bill Richardson (who I actually think is a relatively admirable Democrat. I've seen him speak twice and he seems to be a pretty good guy) endorsed Barack today. Bill is a rather moderate Democrat and a Hispanic. I'm sure Obama is hoping that support from a moderate Democrat will swing some of the votes of more moderate Democratic voters who are scared of Barack's uber-liberal views and policies. Also, he's certainly hoping for help with the elusive Spanish vote which has heavily favored Hillary.

And finally, McCain has been rising in the polls this week after all this Democratic controversy. Zogby had him up double digits in a matchup of either Democratic candidate, which was a complete reversal from the weeks before.

So, now I can't decide who I wan't to win the Democratic nomination more: Divisive Hillary or vulnerable Barack?
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Tolls

Looks like Mr. Argento and all the Western Massachusetts people might be getting their revenge on us South Shore people. The Massachusetts Turnpike Authority is reviewing plans to more-equally distribute tolls in the state, meaning that the South Shore might be in for a rude awakening. Lets hope everything stays the way it is...
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St. Pat

Happy St. Patrick's Day weekend!
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Trans fat

Well, looks like the nationwide trend on banning trans fats has made it to Boston. I can't hardly wait to see what they ban next (perhaps reading the Constitution? Or maybe personal responsibility?)!
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Catch up

Well, I'm back at Georgetown for a few days between breaks. Spring is setting in down here too, which is nice. Flowers are starting to pop up and it was 61 today, while it was flurrying back home when I called. I flew in to DC late Sunday night and I'm headed back to Boston Tuesday night for Easter break. It has been/will be a long, busy nine days (thus, the lack of posts).

So a lot has happened since I last wrote. Obama, to no ones surprise, overwhelmingly won a very racially divided Mississippi.
Some people are wondering if Hillary did even worse than reported, as some statistics show that a decent number of Republicans acted on Rush Limbaugh's call to vote for Hillary to mess up the race. Too bad it couldn't have been more of a help!

I'm now convinced that the absolute best gift the Democrats can give Republicans this year is a Hillary nomination. It will split the party, disenchant voters, and generally cause chaos. Keep your fingers crossed. I will admit that the thought of an Obama/Clinton ticket scares the hell out of me, as that would be almost impossible to beat.

And finally, how about that governor from New York? What a sleaze. His poor wife and kids. I watched the news and read articles this week with a laugh, as usual picking up the liberal media bias. Can you imagine (well, you can, seeing that it has happened recently) the outcry if this had been a Republican governor? The headlines would have screamed "REPUBLICAN governor guilty in sex sting!" Instead, the headlines were a much more discreet "Governor of New York accused in prostitution sting". No mention of party, of course (for a good example of this, check out the Globe's
photo slideshow of disgraced politicians. Notice that somehow all the Republicans have their party mentioned, when the Democrats don't of course). Anyways, enough of these holier-than-thou politicians (from both sides of the table). How do we end up with such bums running our country? Out of the 300+ million, we end up with them?

Happy Wednesday. Until next time...
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Word of the Week

Word of the week (two days late):

Pettifoggery- n., a quarrel about petty points; bicker.
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Big Night

March 4th, 2008 had the potential to be a decisive day in 2008 presidential election history. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you view it), the date batted .500.

At last, we have a definite Republican presidential nominee: John McCain. Mike Huckabee conceded defeat to McCain tonight in Texas and pledged to fully support him hereafter. McCain will be meeting with Bush and party leaders in the upcoming days to get the national campaign process rolling.

On the Democratic side, March 4th left the race just as jumbled as it has always been. As of this post, Hillary has won Rhode Island and Ohio soundly and seems to be on her way to taking Texas. Obama, as expected, swept Vermont. These do-or-die races give Hillary the infusion of life she needs to continue her campaign. Obama has downplayed her wins tonight, instead focusing on the fact that months ago he trailed her in these states by double digits. He is poised to win Wyoming and Mississippi in the upcoming days. Hillary has all-but-conceded these states, and has her sights set on Pennsylvania, which awards 158 delegates.

Analysts debate the positive and negative aspects of the continuing Democratic primary. Some claim that the prolonged battle benefits McCain, as he is given the opportunity to lay the groundwork for a national campaign. Others claim that the battle will hurt McCain, as the media will potentially ignore him over the coming weeks. I personally believe that McCain will benefit from a strategic standpoint, as the Obama and Clinton continue to show eachother's weaknesses through their contentious debates and accusations (such as this weeks NAFTA spat and claims that Obama is given a free pass by the media).

Regardless, the upcoming weeks should provide entertainment for all...
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Word of the Week

Word of the week:

Smarmy- adj., excessively or unctuously flattering, ingratiating, servile, etc.; hypocritically, complacently ,or effusively earnest; unctuous.

Thanks to Clare Conroy for that one!

Happy Spring Break!
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