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Archive for June, 2009

The drawn-out saga of Minnesota’s 2008 senatorial election appears at last to be coming to a close. Or is it?

After recounts and lawsuits galore, the Minnesota State Supreme Court has ruled unanimously that Alan Stuart Franken is the winner of the hotly-disputed race.

Regrettably, the court stopped short of directly ordering Governor Tim Pawlenty to issue a certificate of election – which leaves an opening for an appeal to the US Supreme Court, the acceptance or refusal of which would fall under the purview of Bush appointee Justice Samuel Alito.

I truly hope that having now been ruled the winner by the state’s highest court, Franken can be allowed to do the job which has been waiting for EIGHT MONTHS. I would want someone finally doing that job even if Franken were not a Democrat.

That said, that 60th vote does make the victory a little sweeter.

Edit to above: Coleman has in fact conceded, and the state of Minnesota has the second Senator to which it is constitutionally entitled. Congratulations to Al Franken on what he must hope will be the biggest fight of his political career.

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I have to admit that I was never a big fan of Michael Jackson. Nevertheless, it’s sad to see the passing of such a cultural icon – especially right on the back of news about Ed McMahon and Farrah Fawcett.

Jackson was a controversial figure at the best of times, often reeling from crisis to crisis as quickly as he could string together two dance steps. The latter half of his career was especially plagued by this, and while he might have done some questionable things, I think overall we witnessed a high-profile example of a life twisted by depression and other such psychological pressures.

‘Rest In Peace’ has almost become a meaningless platitude, but I truly hope that after all this time, ‘MJ’ can indeed find some sorely-needed peace.

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Nice going, USA!

In the furore over Sanford, I had forgotten to mention something rather amazing.

Yesterday the US men’s soccer team defeated the world’s #1-ranked team – Spain – to reach the final of the Confederations Cup.

Spain were undefeated in the last 35 games (a joint world record), and are the reigning European champions.

Congrats to coach Bob Bradley and his team, who will face #5-ranked Brazil in the final this weekend.

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So, as all the world now knows, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford has become the latest politician publicly revealed as being unable to keep it in his pants.

It’s no secret, especially in these troubled times, that people in positions of power have stressful jobs and sometimes need to get away from their day-to-day lives. However, this doesn’t necessarily extend so far as to simply disappear without a word to your family or your staff as to where the hell you might be. That’s irresponsible at best, and criminally negligent at worst.

The fact that he was in Argentina having an affair, though sensationalized by the media, is very much secondary to the dereliction of duty we saw there.

Also, Governor? Don’t blab about family values and the Ten Commandments while you’re screwing around. That kind of hypocrisy will come back to bite you in the ass.

Which brings me to 2012.

Sanford was considered to be a contender for the Republican nomination. I think he can probably kiss that prospect goodbye.

We’ve already seen John Ensign fall victim to the same issue, Bobby Jindal firmly stick his foot in his mouth on (among other things) volcano monitoring, Newt Gingrich get blasted for calling Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor a racist, Rick Perry suggest that his state secede from the Union….

Things don’t looks so good for the GOP in 2012. Romney and Barbour are certainly prospects, but for how long?

Did they all get together at the party convention last year, shake a Magic 8-ball and say “OK, in April *point* YOU get to screw it up, and *shake* here’s how. In May, it’s *point* YOUR turn, and you’ll do it *shake* like this…”

Next, we’ll find incriminating pictures of Sarah Palin with HER hot Argentinian mistress.

Actually, I’d pay good money to see that.

NOTE: I know that there has been no shortage of Democrats with blanketeering issues (Clinton, Edwards, Spitzer etc.) – but they’re not the ones in the news right now.

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So I do not, in fact, have the swine flu.

Thanks to everybody who expressed their concern, here and elsewhere.

Apparently there are a couple of viruses doing the rounds which present with roughly the same symptoms, which I’m sure makes things inconvenient for those in the medical profession.

So I picked up the test results in writing on Monday afternoon, figuring that I could report back in to my employer that all was well, and be back to work as quickly as I left.

Yeah. WOW, was there ever a lot of red tape to go through in order to return to work, across multiple departments and requiring approval from all over the place. One would think that official test results, in writing, would be sufficient, but apparently not.

So I didn’t in fact go back to work yesterday as I had planned.

I am back today, with an extra three and a half days’ work on my plate. Fun!

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This Little Piggy

The Universe is laughing at me.

Remember my two-posts-ago about being underwhelmed by the talk of the H1N1 flu virus?

All three of us have been sick the last few days. Upon describing the symptoms to our doctor, we were told that she thinks it’s probably the good ol’ swine flu.

The doctor thinks We Have. The Fucking. Swine Flu. #FML

Tests are being done to confirm or refute.

I am forbidden by company policies from showing up at work today, and I can’t even enjoy it.

*sigh*

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Proving that there’s more than one place where the far-right hardliners know how to rig an election, the handy victory supposedly scored by Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in his re-election bid looks decidedly fishy.

It’s not the result that bothers me, it’s the sound of millions of hopes being ruthlessly crushed by the ruling elite. I have issues with any kind of theocratic regime, but one whose grip on power is so tenuous that it cannot withstand honest competition and debate is just a pitiful sight.

There may yet be a re-count, but will that also be rigged? Time will tell.

In the meantime, props to Mousavi’s supporters for speaking out and for the millions of people flooding Twitter and Flickr with coverage that the Iranian state wouldn’t allow the international media to get directly.

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