Sunday, October 29, 2006

new york times endorses ned lamont

And Diane Farrell (that quote is on the jump page).

About Ned Lamont, in “The Senate Race in Connecticut,” the editors wrote:

The Congressional elections are very much about America’s problems in Iraq ... Ned Lamont and Joseph Lieberman, have clear disagreements over whether invading Iraq was a good idea in the first place, but grow much fuzzier when the question of future strategy comes up.

Mr. Lieberman ... talks about the threat of Islamic terrorism. Mr. Lamont ... reminds voters what a mess the invasion created. When it comes to the next step, Mr. Lieberman seems to mimic the Bush administration’s proposal to stay the course ... with new tactics. Mr. Lamont is close to the Senate Democrats (minus Mr. Lieberman) who demanded a timetable for withdrawal without being too firm on what that ought to entail.

No one expects legislators to dictate military tactics. But what we need from the next crop of elected officials in Washington is a willingness to face reality, to choose from among difficult options and have the courage to be honest with the public about the consequences. On those points, Mr. Lamont is by far the better candidate. [emphasis added]

... Connecticut’s Democratic voters sent Mr. Lieberman what should have been a jarring wake-up call when they rejected him for Mr. Lamont ... We have been waiting to see what lessons the state’s best-known politician took from his defeat, and from the daily evidence of the deterioration of the situation in Iraq.

We wanted to see a capacity for growth and change in Mr. Lieberman. The country is full of Republicans who now realize the Iraq invasion was a disaster, either in its basic concept or in its execution. The most honorable of them are in agony over what has happened. Mr. Lieberman, who had not only continually defended the administration’s Iraq policy but also attacked Democrats who criticized the president, had more cause for soul-searching than most.

But instead of re-evaluating his own positions, Mr. Lieberman blamed his constituents for failing to notice that he had offered some negative comments about the conduct of the war [emphasis added], too, mainly when he was running for the Democratic nomination for president in 2004. He did not protest when Dick Cheney said that people who voted for Mr. Lamont were giving comfort to “Al Qaeda types.” His only reflection seemed devoted to a re-examination of the rules for getting back on the ballot.

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posted by lee on 10/29/06 at 12:57 PM

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well, i’ve been busy

My father asked if I’d stopped blogging. No. It’s just that I’ve been so busy this month. We had to go home for my uncle’s funeral, which was a hard trip because I was upset about the reason.

And we’ve had a lot of things to do on the various and sundry websites we are working on, plus the tech support is keeping Stanley busy (he’s off on a tech support call right now—I hate it when he has to work on the weekend).

Call For Change

And we’ve gotten very active in both the MoveOn.org get out the vote campaign, Call for Change, and the Ned Lamont campaign, spending hours doing data entry. MoveOn.org’s Call for Change, according to Eli Pariser, is:

Basically, it allows people to log onto http://www.callforchange.org from their home computers and then phone target voters in the 30+ top House and Senate races around the nation. Our goal is to make 5 million phone calls to inconsistent voters who lean Democratic—we recently passed 1.5 million. Our members chipped in millions to allow MoveOn to buy the most up-to-date lists, acquire consumer data, and use micro-targeting to ensure that every call is maximized. We used the Busby and Lamont campaigns to test our program and make it a good user experience. After Busby, a Yale study compared our phone program to others and found that it boosted turnout the most. Part of the reason we designed the program the way we did was to make it work for parents and others who’ve want to chip in but only have 20 or 30 minutes free to volunteer at the end of a long work day—not just the super-activists. Also, folks in areas without competitive races or who live in rural areas far from campaign offices no longer have to be excluded from GOTV. Seems like a great way to work on GOTV without having to make a serious time commitment. Remember, we’ll only realize our big gains this November if we outwork the other side. They’re not sitting back or holding anything back. Here’s one way you can help our side out-hustle the opposition.

Neither of us can stand making phone calls (and I’m so hard of hearing it would be a waste of time for me), so we volunteered to do the data entry for the phone banking: noting answers to brief polls, correcting phone numbers, making sure that people who want absentee ballots get sent ballots, taking people off the calling list if they ask not to be called. I’m always amazed how much we get done so fast. We enjoy working on both the Call for Change campaign and the Ned Lamont campaign so much that it’s difficult to decide where to put our time in. We’re actually enjoying meeting more people from our community. Keeps us from becoming complete curmudgeons (well, except maybe Stanley—but he’s been one for at least ten years already so ... ) So, Dad, it’s been political activism that’s been keeping me from blogging so much—I am my father’s daughter after all. (Except I don’t think I could ever run for office—I just can’t tolerate fools long enough not to completely lose it.) And I just don’t see how anyone who is against the war in Iraq can conceivably vote for any congressperson, senator, or candidate who is pro-war, whether he or she is a Democrat or a Republican. I know nothing will change unless the Republicans are kicked in the ass and out of Congress and as far as I can see it, a vote for a Republican—including Lieberman—is a vote for the status quo: the escalating death of soldiers and Iraqi men, women, and children; the inability to solve any problems here, including healthcare and education and environmental issues because the money is being sucked into the black hole of the war. Here in my own congressional district, if not for the war I would probably be voting for Chris Shays, a Republican. Until Iraq, I always thought he did a decent job, even if I didn’t always agree with him. And he seemed to be in touch with us, rather than spending all his time isolated within the Beltway. But two years ago, I voted for Diane Farrell, and this year, I will vote for Diane Farrell—because Shays is pro War, pro Bush, and just does not represent me or my district anymore. Diane Farrell seems to have our priorities straight and I think she’ll do a great job for us in DC. Ok, enough ranting. I’ve got some data to enter ... (and Dad, I’ll get the pictures you sent up on Picasa just as soon as I can!)

posted by lee on 10/29/06 at 10:50 AM

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Saturday, October 07, 2006

the tigers kicked the yankees’ asses

Would love to be in Michigan celebrating with my family tonight!

To my brother-in-law Jeff: “neener neener neener ... “

Go Tigers! Hope they do just as well against Oakland.

posted by lee on 10/07/06 at 05:10 PM

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Friday, October 06, 2006

einstein one month later

Einstein arrived at my parents’ house on September 5th. I asked them to take her monthly anniversary photo—here is this month’s photo, which you can click to enlarge (she is about 10 weeks old):

Einstein Cat at 10 weeks old
“She is now in complete control of the house.”

 

posted by lee on 10/06/06 at 10:38 AM

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Wednesday, October 04, 2006

stress test wednesday shows no problema

Went in to Norwalk Hospital for the dobutamine stress test Wednesday morning. The cardiologist supervising the test told me it looks like everything is just fine. Looks like the nuclear stress test was a false positive. We’re relieved. Very relieved.

Now all that remains is figuring out why my blood pressure shot up like that and how to get it back to normal so I can get off this medication. So I’d better make sure I schedule that visit with Dr. Karol. And I still wonder about that hyperventilation stuff—what would make me do that? I’m not prone to panic attacks. It will probably remain a mystery. An expensive mystery.

posted by lee on 10/04/06 at 09:46 PM

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Monday, October 02, 2006

political ads: my plea to ned and diane

Here, in Connecticut, we’re have some very interesting congressional races going on. Tough ones. So, naturally, we have campaign commercials coming out the whazoo. So, here’s my take and my plea, for what it’s worth:

I ardently support Ned Lamont for Senate. Met him last February, just before he officially threw his hat into the ring. He listened to my questions, looked at me directly when giving me answers, listened to what I had to say. His sincerity, intelligence, and ability to think quickly and clearly came through. He addressed issues way beyond Iraq, such as healthcare and education. He came across as someone who’s really thinks things through and who really believes in what he’s saying.

But his tv ads don’t show the Ned Lamont I know. His primary ads were clever, and appropriate for then. Now, though, I want to hear directly from him. I want him to face the camera and tell me what he stands for. Clever doesn’t cut it any more. His latest anti-Iraq ad was very dramatic and well made, but we already know all this. Tell us what your position is on healthcare, on education, on civil liberties, on taking care of our veterans ... talk to us via camera like you do in person. I am so, so weary of clever, of graphics, of other people telling instead of the candidate telling. His commercial producers might win awards, but what they need to win are votes and I don’t see that happening. He’s not talking to the people who still haven’t made up their minds. Stop talking about what Joe does or does not do—start talking about what YOU want to do.

And I also support Diane Farrell for House of Representatives. It’s time for Chris Shays to go—it’s been long enough and he’s wrong about Iraq. But Farrell’s tv ad (I’ve only seen one, ad infinitum) is all about Chris Shays and his support of the war in Iraq. So is her website. But, Diane, what else do you stand for? What would you do differently?

Farrell’s campaign has been bothering me a lot, so much so that I wish there was someone else running against Shays. First was her pre-primary endorsement of Lieberman, which was a totally stupid and needless endorsement, especially given her seemingly one-issue campaign. Then it’s the total lack of grassroots effort—her campaign has struck me as so Democratic Party establishment, the same establishment that’s been losing local elections for the past ten years, that’s it’s almost offensive. The only time I get anything in the mail from her is when she sends invitations to her $1,000-a-ticket fundraisers, which is so far out of my league she may as well be a Republican. As much as I would have liked to hear what Madeline Albright had to say, I couldn’t afford the price of listening. Her campaign is very rich, very Westport—at least, that’s how it appears to this not-rich, non-Westporter. I also signed up to volunteer for her campaign, but never, ever heard from her except to ask me for money.

Come back to Planet Earth, Diane: most of the people who will be voting for you are not rich and don’t live in Westport. How about a commercial or two about YOU and what YOU believe? Talk to me, tell me why I should vote for you. Why should I trust you and not Shays?

I won’t get into the other ads for the other races since I can’t vote for those candidates. But it would be nice to hear from the candidates themselves in those ads, as well, since we have no choice but to view them as we watch tv on Connecticut stations.

posted by lee on 10/02/06 at 08:49 AM

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october surprise?

Back in August, my dad said that the October Surprise will be that Bushie dumps Rumsfeld.

Maybe Woodward’s “revelations” are just paving the way.

Maybe Bushie will dump Rummy (who sounds like he’s getting senile, anyway) and appoint LIEberman the new defense secretary. Which wouldn’t mean that LIEbermouth would withdraw from the Senate race, oh, no, he would still hedge, just in case his appointment wasn’t approved.

posted by lee on 10/02/06 at 08:34 AM

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Sunday, October 01, 2006

squirrel vs. stanley

Stanley told me he took the mesh off the hole the squirrel had been using to store nuts in. Turns out she was also storing her babies there. Stanley looked up and saw one of them and quickly took the mesh off, then watched as Mama Rodent transported the babies, one-by-one, to the nest up in the Austree. They weren’t tiny babies, Stanley said, but definitely not nearly adult size. He said he felt just awful about it and was glad to see all four of them were alive and doing fine.

I guess that explains the squirrel’s persistence in trying to get the mesh off. And I’m glad Stanley noticed what was going on.

posted by lee on 10/01/06 at 03:37 PM

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what a whacked coupla days

I’ve been out of commission for a couple of days. Wednesday evening, because of feeling a pain in my chest, which went away, and lots of pressure on my chest and weird sensations etc. that I’ve never felt before and that didn’t go away, I asked Stanley to take me to Norwalk Hospital to get it checked out. That’s how bad it scared me—that I would ask to go to the hospital. I thought they’d check me out, tell me it was all in my head, and send me home and then I’d bitch about having to pay for it all and that would be that. We had plans to go see Candy and Dirk on Friday and were really looking forward to it.

Nope. EKG, CAT scan, admission. I spent the night in the ER because they didn’t have a bed in telemetry. The ER nurses switched the cot for a real bed, but it didn’t help much. I told Stanley to go home at some point—there was no reason for him to be there because nothing was going to happen and he was so tired. I was heading into migraine territory fast, and I didn’t want to have to think about anything let alone worrying about my husband being too tired to drive home. I know we spoke with an admitting doctor, a nice woman with an accent like Luka’s on ER, but I barely remember it. And I remember being examined by a PA named Lee something and the ER doc, whom I liked, name of Dr. Strichman.

The migraine grabbed hold and didn’t really go away until I got out of bed on Saturday (at least, that’s when I noticed it was gone) to let the dog out. The migraine was the direct result of nitroglycerin, which they gave me in an attempt to ease the pressure I felt on my chest (for a long time, it felt like the cat was on my chest. It slowly subsided.) Strichman allowed me to have some aspirin when I told them that Tylenol does not work for me, and that took the edge off. It took hours and hours for them to get my blood pressure back down toward anything resembling normal. I’d never had a problem with high blood pressure before, so this worried me more than anything else. At one point it was something like 192/95—yikes.

Thursday, around 11 or so, I was moved up to telemetry, to a room on the ninth floor with a wonderful view. I was on the wrong side of the building to be able to see the Sound or our house, but it was a great view nonetheless.

While in the ER, I was visited by, I think, Dr. Chi, a cardiologist, and two student doctors from Chicago Medical School. Dr. Chi said he was setting me up to get a stress test, told me I would have to be in a couple of days because there were no open slots for the pharmacological stress test. I told him I’d do the other kind, the treadmill one, because I didn’t want to be in there. One of the student docs gave me an exam and asked me lots of questions. He was nervous about not forgetting anything. It reminded me of my student teaching days, so I was nice to him. Despite my migraine. Dr. Chi wouldn’t let me have any aspirin, insisted that I try Tylenol. Asshole—I’m old enough to know what does and doesn’t work on my headaches.

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posted by lee on 10/01/06 at 11:10 AM

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