Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Process-Orientation Republic

There is a new discussion underway today...about a new method of passing the health care package. It's a funny worded game...where you don't have to vote for something bad but you can vote for something good (that's the way that the CNN guy explained it to me).

So this would help fix up these poor Democratic guys who just can't vote for the bad bill...but they could vote for a good bill...well, maybe.

I sat and pondered over this...as a guy from Bama can only do.

I had this vision.

Typically...you need 50 percent plus one vote...to end the discussion and make something a law. It suddenly came to me...a method of sorts where 49 percent plus one vote would be enough to pass something. I would naturally write up this change in a 2,800 page document...and hide it on page 1,842 (in case, you were looking for it...and I'd always refer to it as the "1842 vote").

Course, as things go....after a year or two...I'd have to put it up via evolution...and fix it to pass a bill with 45 percent and one vote. Naturally, I'd hide this in another 2,800 page document.

As times go by....I'd have to eventually help some political folks again....by fixing up another bill to pass all bills with only 35 percent and one vote. You kinda know how I would pass it.

You of course, can guess my end point....one percent and one vote....would allow a bill to pass via congress. It would be "process-orientated". Key words....you know.

Here's the neat thing about one percent and one vote. We'd only need four guys actually sitting in Washington...and everyone else could actually be kept back in their home state. We could actually run the US government...with four representatives and two senators. Forget about democracy....we'll going for process-orientation. It's a fine way...and even Thomas Jefferson would have been amazed at the simpleness of it.

((Yes, I realize that Jefferson would have chased me around the Potomac with a baseball bat)).

Sports Legends from My County

My local town newspaper....which shall go unnamed on both counts (the paper, and the town)....had a article written up on the county sports hall of fame.

We had ten folks from the county....from the past one hundred years...who got wrote up and up into the county fame deal. I read through them, and there were actually two guys that I knew something about.

The first guy...who shall go unnamed....was a 4-star basketball player for my old high school back around 1945. He was impressive and probably one of the ten best basketball players of the county from all time. At the end of his high school period....he had an invitation from the University of Kentucky...a scholarship opportunity...offered to him.

As the article wrote this up...the guy made the decision not to attend, and that was the end of his basketball career.

It was a nice way to write it....but it left you puzzled...unless you knew some other pieces to the story. My old high school basketball coach and English teacher...grew up in this community at the same time. He graduated a year or two before this...went off to the war....and fought in the Pacific.

He brought up this basketball legend on two or three occasions....and the curious ending to the legend...came when he went up to visit Adolph Rupp (the coach of Kentucky at the time). The local legend in question...drove up and this face-to-face meeting did not go well. The coach wasn't fully confident, and the legend likely felt himself way beyond his grassroots.

So the local basketball legend stayed home and simply lived a normal life.

The second story was a legend that was stretched a bit. Across from my local area...about five miles over...was another town. Here was another basketball legend. His big deal....which always got passed around for decades...is that he would practice after school...and then have to walk home if he couldn't find a ride.

This walk? The legend always claimed it was twelve to fourteen miles. It even got written into the paper this way. If it had been twelve miles....he would have attended another school entirely.

You have to grasp the geography of the county. There are around seven schools displaced throughout the county...with four on one side, and three on the other. None are more than six miles from another. The most this guy would have ever walked....is maybe six miles...and that's pushing it.

We need legends...to mark the passage of time. It's just that sometimes...we have to stretch stories a bit...to make them unbelievable.

The Problem Man

If you had a problem....any problem....can you think of any reason why the best guys to fix your problem would be a Representative from Congress or a Senator?

I sat and pondered this today....with words from a major newspaper announcing that Senator Chris Dodd is writing up a bill to save our banking system.

It's a funny thing....here was Chris Dodd for the past four years as the chief of the Senate banking committee...watching the slipping and sliding of the bank system through all of last year. And now....he's the guy to fix the problems?

Something about this...doesn't make much sense.

The complexity of Dodd's bill? I sat and tried to analyze it via 100-line newspaper article. After a minute...I put it down. You start to get the impression that some special lobbyist guy wrote the thing for Dodd....either to help banks or to kill the banks. It's hard to decide which. In the end....I suspect that since Dodd sat and watched the boat sink last year....he's probably not capable of fixing any real banking problem, and this is a joke.

The Way It Goes

Usually....folks play by some rules....and life goes on.

Then you have some cases...where rules got tossed, and you get screwed.

So, there was this AF NCO....Jene Newsome....who quietly played out her situation as a lesbian....and eventually quietly married her partner. The partner ended up in trouble...and the cops came to serve papers and possibly arrest the partner. This all played out at Ellsworth AFB, North Dakota....a base outside of Rapid City.

The city cops decide to search the house....come upon a marriage license between the partner and Jene....and then make the decision to turn it over to the base.

The base took the document...processed Jene via the gay rules...and discharged her back in January.

There's alot you can ask about this. Why did the cops turn the seized document over to the base? Is it standard procedure to take evidence seized and just hand it to the Air Force? What written rules by the city of Rapid City exist over private documents taken and who might eventually get control of the documents?

I wrote out a blog about three months ago over this trend of third parties who get into the "don't ask & don't tell" policy. It's one of the weakest part of the policy. You have jealous lovers, jealous friends, or wannabe cops who determine their rules as they slide by each day.

In this case...I'd like to see some kind of "justice"...but I doubt that this is possible. The problem is that we all try to play by the rules...in our own way. Sometimes....it's just not enough.