February 25, 2012
Keeping New Year’s resolutions is difficult, especially if that resolution is to drop a bad habit.
Like if you were to try and clean up your dirty mouth and use less curse words. Then you need to find a new vocabulary to slide into the place of all those expressive expletives you left in last year. The hardest part of dropping a bad habit is finding a replacement for it.
At least that’s what I’ve found nearly three months into 2012. The year I’ve decided to quit smoking.
By the end of 2011 I was up to a pack a day, and at roughly five minutes to smoke each butt, I’m left with an extra hour and forty minutes to fill each day, almost the length of a movie.
Cinema being as it is these days I’ve decided to read more and early last week I found myself aggressively scanning the bookshelves for more words and ideas to inhale like nicotine smoke.
I settled on “A Generation of Swine” by Hunter S. Thompson, the Gonzo journalist
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February 4, 2012
Back in June 2011, as the rest of the Republican hopefuls were jogging laps, trying to get in shape for the mad dash to the nomination in 2012, Newt Gingrich was floating around the Aegean Sea with wife Callista, just trying not to catch a sunburn.
This decision, to cruise rather than campaign, aggravated Gingrich’s then campaign manager Rob Johnson and his then spokesperson Rick Tyler so much that the two men and a bus load of aides quit team Gingrich, saying the former Speaker of the House wasn’t serious enough about running for President.
They all may be having second thoughts now. After the 68-year-old Gingrich pulled off a win in South Carolina, he is suddenly neck-and-neck with the odds-on favorite, Mitt Romney. Gallup even has Gingrich ahead by one percentage point in their latest poll of GOP ballot support.
Unexpected maybe, but certainly no surprise. If there is one thing Newt Gingrich knows it is television, and more specifically the key role it plays in the American political process.
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January 12, 2012
Politicians are not a popular bunch these days. According to Gallup, the nation’s most referenced pollsters of all things “human nature and behavior for more than 75 years,” President Obama currently has a 46% approval rating. That’s dangerously close to the average approval rating of fellow Nobel Prize recipient Jimmy Carter who, in 1981, was sent back to the peanut farm after only one term in office.
Congress, meanwhile, is in poor standing with the American public, even by congressional standards. According to Gallup the average job approval rating for congress since 1974 has been 34%. Today it is a record low 11%.
With an economy that can’t seem to get rolling and elected officials on both sides of the aisle that seem unable and unwilling to cure the nation’s ills; it’s easy to see why Americans have lost faith in their politicians.
With that back drop, enter Herman Cain with, as one New York Times writer described it, his “golden voice and folksy manner.”
A virtual nobody when he began campaigning for the Republican Party’s nomination in April 2011, Cain used his credentials as a self-made man and that same “folksy manner” as a catapult to the head of the polls. By the end of September he had won a Florida Straw Poll, and suddenly the Washington outsider looked like a serious contender for the GOP nod.
But September, as it tends to do, turned unsympathetically into October, the month of witches, monsters and ghosts, and one whopper of a ghost emerged from Herman Cain’s past in the scariest of forms-sexual harassment allegations.
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