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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Blame game 



Obama sez:
Not all the nation's ills can be blamed on President Bush, Democratic candidate Barack Obama said Wednesday . . .
Well, yes. I suppose we can also blame the millions who voted for him.
Actually, of course, Obama has a point -- Americans have to get beyond the politics of personality and start evaluating presidential candidates based on what they want to do and how likely they are to be able to do it.
Which is particularly difficult with a press that love to report on personality because its so much easier than actually reading policy statements and doing some research -- yes, actual research! -- to determine how realistic the policy statements actually are.
Your typical national media reporter seems to take the Calvin-and-Hobbes approach to research:

Calvin: I've got to write a report for school. Bats. Can you imagine anything more stupid? Heck, I don't know anything about bats! How am I supposed to write a report on a subject I know nothing about?! It's impossible!
Hobbes: I suppose research is out of the question.
Calvin: Oh, like I'm going to learn about bats and then write a report?! Give me a break!


Calvin: Hello, Susie? This is Calvin. You know this report we're supposed to write for school? Yeah. My topic is bats. What's yours? Elephants? Hmm. Well, are you going to the library to look up elephants? You are? Great! While you're there, could you research bats too and make copies of all the information you find, and maybe underline the important parts for me and sort of outline it, so I wouldn't have to read it all?
Hobbes: How'd it go?
Calvin: I really loathe girls.


Calvin: I think we've got enough information now, don't you?
Hobbes: All we have is one "fact" you made up.
Calvin: That's plenty. By the time we add an introduction, a few illustrations, and a conclusion, it will look like a graduate thesis. Besides, I've got a secret weapon that will guarantee a good grade! No teacher can resist this! A clear plastic binder! Pretty professional looking, eh?
Hobbes: I don't want co-author credit on this, OK?

Personally, I favour Barak Obama and John Edwards in the US presidential race.
Hillary would likely be able to do the job OK, too, I guess, but my problem with her is that she hasn't yet been able to tell anybody why she wants to be president. Obama wants to change politics in America and Edwards wants to change the American economy -- either one would be a worthwhile achievement.

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