Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Things That Make Me Go Grrr

I usually like Hannity fairly well. It's something to listen to that's not as vapid as FM, undoubtedly, and he covers lots of news items I wouldn't be aware of if I relied on the main stream media.


But his attitude toward the presidential candidates is abysmal. He's a Rudy-bot, that's clear, but he actually, in the space of several minutes, told every other candidate who's not Rudy, Thompson, or Romney, that they need to get off the stage and give the big boys more time. As soon as he said that he turned around and praised the effort to get the border fence built. Which is being headed by... a presidential candidate that he wants to see abandon the stage to the "real contenders." The same presidential candidate who wrote the fence bill in the first place and got it passed.

I'm sick of this. I want to vote for the person who best represents me, not the one who's most popular, or has the most money, or the best hair. I want the one I who will sit there in Washington and be of the same mind as I.

All these whiners are doing insisting that people abandon the dark horse because gees their principles are excellent but they're just not shiny enough, is to guarantee we get another round of crappy candidates that appeal to the "fence sitters."

I personally don't give an ancient flatulent shih-tuz for this kind of thinking.

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Tuesday, June 05, 2007

See Who Salutes

Scary things coming out the jaw of the Hillary Machine:

Presidential hopeful Hillary Rodham Clinton outlined a broad economic vision Tuesday, saying it's time to replace an "on your own" society with one based on shared responsibility and prosperity.

“Fairness doesn’t just happen. It requires the right government policies.”

“It’s time to put the common good, the national interest, ahead of individuals.”

It all sounds very warm and fuzzy and "for the children," doesn't it...comrade? I was under the impression we fought the cold war for a reason, and here it sneaks right back up under the guise of quashing individuality for the sake of fairness.

This frightens me. It appeals to the lowest common denominator in human reason: jealously. This is the attitude that sound like, “If I can’t have a BMW, then the CEO of that fortune 500 company can’t either.” You can almost feel the gloating at someone else being brought down to their “proper” level.

I know this feeling well, since I used to share it. I was extremely bitter toward people who had more than me, made more than me, or did more than me. I wondered why they should get it so easily, why I should live in a crappy basement apartment and not afford food while they jetted around in nice cars.

To my credit, I never supported redistribution, since I realized that to many I was the wealthy one, and those people wanted my meager stuff redistributed to them as well. I got over the notion entirely when I joined the business world at full tilt, and gathered first-hand experience of the tremendous sacrifices of money, time, and life, that most CEOs shovel into their companies. They should be rewarded for that, and I’m glad they are. If there were no reward, why would anyone try?

Out of the goodness of their hearts? Right.

I recommend at this juncture, that everyone who hasn’t yet at least make a stab at reading “Atlas Shrugged.” It’s a big fat book, written by an atheist, but it paints a very compelling picture of a world under people like Hillery, who would grind up all the strong, innovative, productive individuals to fertilize the bed of mongoloid fairness.

Think about fairness for a second: if we all lived in small metal boxes of the same size, and were fed the same gruel in the same amount, and wore the same grey jumpsuits, worked at the same factory jobs for the same number of hours, and no one was allowed to do better than anyone else at anything, at least it would all be fair, right? We would all be equal, right?

People who advocate small steps toward that future scare the hell out of me.

Hat tip to Word Around the Net.

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Monday, June 04, 2007

3 Small Tips for Living

For those who struggle with it.

1. If you want to feel better about your life and what you have in it, spend an hour each evening in the non-ambulatory ward of your local nursing home. (You’ll feel much worse at first, then you’ll start to appreciate a lot of things you didn’t notice before.)

2. It doesn’t matter how much you bounce around, as long as the target is in the sights when the hammer comes down.

3. Depression can be alleviated by exercise. Problem is, you have to get off your ass and go do it. You need to do it anyways. Excuses are the rocket fuel of depression. Before you can start recovering in any way, you need to commit to stop making them.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Pick One

Shrinkwrapped has another interesting post on marriage. I started to leave a comment, that once again turned into an essay:

being able to enter and a maintain a healthy marriage reflects the maturity of the individuals involved

This quote you’ve included from Occam’s Beard touches on a point that I believe a good many of my generation (the tail end of X) are missing, among the others you’ve mentioned: Part of a good marriage is determined by the choosing, not just the maintaining.

I’ve come to the belief, from observing my peers, that the societal unwillingness to make value judgments that has prevailed in the last 50 years has affected their ability to make good relationship choices. They are somewhat mired in the idea that it is unbearably uncouth to set a standard of behavior that they find acceptable in others, and more often than not end up with partners who’s behavior they are unhappy with, due to their inability or unwillingness to ask for better. From my peer group I hear a lot of statements such as “but that would be forcing my opinion on them” and “but they’re their own person.” It seems all well and good for casual relationships, but trying to raise a family or secure a marriage with two people who are determined to not attempt to influence each other spells apathy at best, and disaster at worst.

My friends are aghast when they learn that I quit smoking at my husband’s (then fiancée’s) demand. How could he be so controlling? How could I let myself be judged like that? I recognized that smoking was an unhealthy behavior, and though I did not want to quit, the balance of positive things that he brought to our relationship overwhelmed the discomfort of ending a damaging habit. In marriage we try to enhance each other’s positive behaviors, and eliminate or minimize those that cause distress to the relationship. This process necessarily includes value judgments as to what is positive and what is destructive, and the willingness to recognize that not all parts of a person’s character (whether theirs or your own) are desirable.

This would be more of a non-issue if my peers chose someone with opinions and beliefs closer to their own, but, for whatever reason, they do not. In many cases I believe this to be because they have never examined what their opinions and beliefs are in the first place, and so cannot begin to find someone who compliments them. It seems they are throwing darts blind, and tend to marry whichever one gets hit and sticks around long enough. Or worse, in my opinion, the one who gives them the greatest visceral feeling of romantic love.

The most consternation I’ve caused with my peers when discussing marriage is when I ask what their potential intended will bring to the relationship: What are their long-term goals? Do you think they will continue to succeed in their career? Can they provide a sound household? How do you get along with their family? It is extremely offensive to some that I consider things other than romantic love in evaluating a potential relationship. It seems to be a hallmark of the post-Boomer generations that “love conquers all.” The notion that someone would choose a mate based on the financial benefit or stability they could offer does sound archaic and backwards, but if you think you may want to be a stay-at-home-mom, the choice of a man whose life goal is to be a radical performance artist is a recipe for discontent, no matter how “in love” he makes you feel.

Again, this concerns value judgments. How much do I value a future as a stay-at-home-mom? How much do I value his creativity and spontaneity? What do I think I will value 20 years from now? One needs to load up the alternatives and see how the scales tilt.

Watching those scales, before or after marriage, is something my peer group seems unable or unwilling to do, favoring instead a combination of continuing romantic excitement and perfection without change to bolster their relationships. Unfortunately neither of those factors exists more than fleetingly.

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