Friday, October 3, 2008

Signs of the times

In my gym, there are signs next to the three-foot-deep hot tub that say "No Diving."

Why do we need such signs, friend wife asked.

I told her that it was not a given that somebody, and probably more than one somebody, would not try to dive in from the edge rather than walk the total of about seven feet to the stairs leading down to the spa.

There are unquestionably many people in this category, but there was never a way to quantify this. How could we know how many people there are who would dive into a three-foot deep hot tub.

It seems to me that that will soon change. Come Nov. 5 or many Nov. 6, we will know.

All we need to do is count the votes for John McCain and Sarah Palin.

I don't know which debate some of the commentators who spouted opinions on the television networks and cable channels following the debate last night (Oct. 2, 2008), but they certainly were not watching the one I was.

Palin didn't answer questions from the thoughtful questioner, Gwen Ifill of PBS. She spouted talking points written on index cards or papers that had been laid on the rostrum she used. She sounded like a robot, regurgitating phrases she learned like a parrot. 

No, she didn't look like a deer caught in headlights, as she has when she didn't have notes and talking points generated by staffers hoping to keep her from again showing how ill-prepared she is to be vice president.

These same handlers and spin doctors somehow convinced our television journalists, otherwise known as the blond and the banal, that somehow if Palin showed up, didn't drool on herself, didn't commit a major gaffe, such as not knowing the Bush Doctrine (by the way, if she had been listening instead of checking her talking points, she would have heard Sen. Joseph Biden Jr. enunciate the Bush Doctrine in three words) and not knowing a thing about the cause of global warming. Wait a minute, she did that.

Anyway, the bar had been set so low that she looked like a star. 

And by the way, what's the big deal about hockey moms? What wrong with soccer moms, or baseball moms, football moms, basketball moms, lacrosse moms? I guess they don't get many of those in the wilds of small-town Alaska, where the snow jobs are thick and plentiful.

Page 2

I received an interesting ad in a junk-mail envelope the other week. "No idea what Those Old Guns are Worth? Call Today!" it read.

Sell your old or unwanted firearms. Excellent prices paid. There was a phone number.  

With the economy as it is, I guess gun dealers want to stock up for the rush. 

Page 3

The bailout finally got passed today, which is a good thing. As Thomas L. Friedman of the New York Times indicated in his excellent column the other day, the only thing to do with this is hold your nose and swallow. Sort of like cod liver oil. Without the bailout, there would have been an economic catastrophe the likes of which we have never seen since the Depression. 

I was glad to see that something good came of this whole thing. The mental health parity legislation, that has been languishing for years in Congress, got put into the bailout legislation and was passed.

What it means is that those people with mental and emotional issues are now on a par with those with physical issues when it comes to insurance and how they are treated by the medical infrastructure. 

Those suffering from emotional issues now have a better chance at treatment, rather than just being pandered to by drug companies with "ask your doctor" ads on television.

Page 4

The weekend looks cool but nice. I hope all have a wonderful weekend, and, for those in the Tribe, a wonderful Shabbos.

Until next time...

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