Sunday, November 19, 2017

[Washington Post] 'We dare defend our rights': Alabama Republicans standing by Moore reflect state's tradition of defiance

The title of this piece says quite a bit to me.  It's what the Alabama republican party is saying about Roy Moore, their embattled candidate for a vacated senate seat.  They're contempt for Washington is greater than the fact that Roy Moore is a liar, bible-wielding hypocrite and a disgusting pig.  What's one to make of such a profound lack of logic?  Any answers to that question?

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Happy Veteran's Day

Today is Veteran's Day. It was once called Armistice Day to mark the end of World War I. The Armistice was signed at the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month.  At some point in the early 50s it was changed to Veteran's Day.

In talking to children about Veteran's Day I've found there to be two common misconceptions.  First, many children believe a veteran is someone who was killed in action.  That of course is incorrect.  It is any person who served in the armed forces including the coast guard.

Second, some children think veterans are people who served in a war.  That too is incorrect.  The fact is that the overwhelming majority of veterans did not serve in combat units in wars.  So any person who serves in any capacity no matter what they did is a veteran.

Take a moment to give quiet thanks to our veterans.  We enjoy the benefits of our country because of them.

Monday, November 6, 2017


Tomorrow is election day. Most of the elections are for local officials so many people tend to think them unimportant.  Don't be one of those people. Very often local politicians have more influence over your daily life than state or national politicians.  Many men and women served their country in order to preserve your right to vote so do it.

Now here are a few things you may or may not have known about elections in general.

About Election Day
  • Election Day was first designated as the Tuesday following the first Monday in November in 1845.
  • Four presidential candidates have won the popular vote but lost the election: Al Gore 2000, Grover Cleveland 1888, Samuel Tiden 1876 and Andrew Jackson 1824.
  • Two presidents won 49 out of 50 states: Ronald Regan 1984 and Richard Nixon 1972.
  • A record number of people watched the first debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump: 84 million.
  • Thirty-two states have voter ID laws.
  • According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2014, there are more than 219 million U.S. citizens who 18 years old or older. More than 142 million said they were registered to vote and more than 92 million said they voted in 2014. Around 35 million people did not respond to the bureau’s questions. In 2012, 61.8 percent of registered voters turned out to vote. In 2008 it was 63.6 percent.
  • Clinton used $1.3 million of her own money to finance her campaign and Trump used $56.1 million of his money.
  • In 2016, $1 billion was spent on digital ads, a 5,000 percent increase from 2008, and $4.4 billion was spent on TV ads, a 16 percent increase from 2012.
  • The first year a campaign ad ran on TV was 1952.
·       Voters in the U.S. may head to the polls on Tuesdays, but the rest of the world prefers to save its votes for Sunday. Interestingly, countries in which English is the primary language tend to be the exception to this rule; in Canada, citizens vote on Mondays, while Brits vote on Thursdays, and Australians and New Zealanders on Saturdays.
·       Every Australian over 18 is required by law to register to vote and to participate in federal elections. Anyone who doesn’t show up on Election Day is fined AU$20 (around $15). Failure to pay that fine results in even steeper penalties—up to AU$180—and can result in a criminal charge.
·       According to a 2016 report about voter turnout in developed countries, just 53.6 percent of Americans performed their civic duty during the 2012 election cycle, which places the U.S. 31st out of 35 OECD nations. By contrast, Belgium saw the highest percentage of eligible voters turn out for its 2014 election; approximately 87.2 percent of Belgian citizens cast their votes.
·       Astronauts aboard the International Space Station have had the ability to vote since 1997, when Texas lawmakers passed a measure that allowed secure ballots to be sent to space by Mission Control in Houston, Texas. Once astronauts make their selections, their ballots—PDFs of the paper ballots they’d receive in the mail—are beamed back down to Earth, where clerks open the encoded documents and submit a hard copy of the astronaut's ballot to be counted.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Hello November

Happy November.  To learn more about the month of November click here