January 19, 2004
I suppose I should recap the status, since it's slightly changed, given the outcome of the Iowa caucuses.
Clark and Lieberman didn't run. I'll be interested in New Hampshire's results next Tuesday.
Posted by charr at 9:57 PM
- John Kerry came in 1st with 38% of the vote
- John Edwards came in 2nd with 32%
- Howard Dean came in 3rd with 18%
- Dick Gephardt came in 4th and says he's dropping out
Wow. I hope and think Dean will be able to do better next week (just so the race is more interesting). Some say Iowa is overrated in its significance and its hard to believe that Dean's money and organization will be unable to make a come back in the next few weeks. But then who would have thought Kerry and Edwards would finish 1, 2 just a week ago?
I was surprised and happy at Dean's placement. I was happy at Edwards for getting 2nd. No doubt, Dean will rise up in NH but Clark is the wildcard. The next several weeks will be very interesting indeed.
I don't think I should feel this way, but I kinda want to laugh at Dean and tell him people are smarter than he thinks. They aren't fooled by his facade and the fact that he doesn't seem to stand for a whole lot.
You've got to stand for something or you'll fall for anything... (I'm singing. Be glad you can't hear it.)
Does anyone get the appeal of Kerry? His look alone turns me off. He looks a bit like Abe Lincoln on a bad day.... I can see the appeal of Edwards - sweet family guy. I like watching Dean. Also, I like watching Clark - he looks so cute in those sweaters :)
Apparently the appeal of Kerry is electability. They like Edwards for his positive message and outlook. The Times quoted one guy saying he liked Kucinich's message, but voted Kerry because he looked more presidential than the other candidates.
I find it interesting that Kerry's ads proclaim his determination to get us off foreign oil... yet he oppposes drilling in the states.
Renee, Why do you have to go and complicate things? Real solutions have no place in campaign politics.
Well, considering that the world's supply of oil is finite, at some point we will have to get off foreign oil and domestic oil. His plan is to shift the amount of foreign oil we consume to alternative energy sources and rely on current domestic wells in the meantime as we complete a transition away from oil dependance.Perhaps it doesn't look feasible to you, and I don't really know if it is, but it's not as patently absurd as you characterize it to be. We really DO need to get off of our foreign oil dependance.
Levi, I of course was being facetious. Both you and Renee have a point. We can't just go off foreign oil. It can't happen in 4 years, and even a gradual decline in dependence on foriegn supplies will raise domestic demand. Ultimately, the goal is for alternative fuel sources, but the domestic wells are necessary in the conversion. And at any rate, it's not really in the president's power to do anything there except provide funding and enthusiasm.
I am all for alternative energy. Hopefully, our retirement cabin will be fueled by the sun and wind. Apparently, we can't make it on the current drills that we have stateside or we would be doing it. Kerry has opposed new drilling. Until alternative sources of energy are more readily available and used, we have to get oil somewhere. Heck, do you expect those moms to drive their kids to soccer practice in a hybrid car? Heavens, no! An Expedition or Navigator is the only thing that will make it over those speed bumps in suburbia. :^/I look forward to the day when we wean ourselves further from oil. It's a pollutant and finite.When dealing with the here and now, though, faced with the choice of kowtowing to Saudi Arabia for oil or drilling in an area the size of a few football fields in Alaska, I favor the latter.
Actually, hybrid SUVs should start appearing on the market in the next couple of years, and I think hybrid vehicles are going to start becoming a bit more cost effective as well. A DARPA-funded electric-hybrid Humvee prototype has also been created, which is actually more powerful than its gas-only relative and gets twice the MPG. Pretty cool stuff, and possibly representative of the future of military vehicles.
Is it bad of me to admit that I really enjoyed Dean's breakdown after the results were in? What the heck was that... that yelp after he listed all the states? Good grief. Not very presidential at all. The local radio station has been having fun with sound bites from that speech, especially the yelp. I feel wicked for enjoying it so much.And Kerry looks like a Q-tip. I have no idea why this bothers me, but it does.
If you didn't catch it on TV, here's a link to the yelp I'm talking about. It's right after he says 'take back the White House.' Ha. Very presidential and dignified.
Having been to election night parties before, I didn't find Dean's hollering all that odd. It takes a strange breed to run for public office. Everything said at those parties and fundraisers is to motivate the volunteers and staffers. And they all loved Dean for going nuts like that. So for is purposes there, it worked. For the rest of us watching, it was a little odd.. but not so much.
It wasn't so much the hollering as it was the yelp at the end; the yelp just seemed more than a little off plumb.
"More than a little off plumb" - I'm learning Southern phrases here! What does it mean/what's it's origin? I'm with Renee. I think people are joking about it a bit much. I didn't find it THAT funny or crazy. Maybe he was exhausted and his voice was giving out. But then I kind of like him, so maybe that's the difference.
Ellen, sorry. That's not a Southern phrase, it's an engineering one. (A plumb bob is a tool used to determine plumb.) If something is plumb, then it is perpendicular to the ground (perfectly vertical). For example, the leaning tower of Pisa is not plumb.What I meant was that Dean wasn't quite right in the head when he yelped. It was a little off center, off balance.
Renee- I did a quick Google search about how big the Alaskan oil drilling would be above ground, since you mentioned the couple football fields that I've heard before... I read that 1 football field=1.3 acres and the amount of land provided is going to be 2,000 acres so more like 1,500 football fields. Also, the site explains why this 2,000 acres could spread across a huge area - only what touches the ground is counted, so a narrow road could stretch for miles and miles without counting for much in acreage of its pavement, but in its impact would be covering a lot of unspoiled land. I think the problem with using this oil is that America is just going to suck it dry without a second thought (no real conservation), and then what? Go to war somewhere to get oil, probably.
Ellen, while I'm not trying to take sides here, I want to point out that much of the Alaskan land under dispute is an utter wasteland. Nicholas Kristoff did several colums on the area back in September, that were fairly interesting. Those articles are no longer free, but there is a slide show on the subject here.
He also didn't seem to have a huge opinion on the issue because a) it is a wasteland that many will never see, but b) it is a piece of nature completely untouched that some may want to see.
If we are going to continue to use oil, whether by need or by want, we need to pony up our own land to do it. It's not fair to ask someone half way around the world to do it for us if we think it's such a spoiler to the environment. Kind of like radioactive waste - my state has been in big disputes with other states in some compact about where to dump radioactive waste. It seems to me that if we want to use nuclear energy, then we best be prepared to put the unpleasant waste in our proverbial back yard.This is classic lack of responsibility that is prevalent in our government and culture. Do whatever you want but pretend there are no consequences - or demand that someone else take care of it.We're notorious for this (Bikini Islands anyone?). So if we want to continue to carelessly use gas and oil like they will never end, we best be prepared to sacrifice whatever it takes to do it instead of expecting another country to dirty up their pretty land and kowtowing to them for the privilege.
Whether Dean is crazy or not, I don't know, but that yelp is/has drawn a lot of attention.
Crazy or "plumb crazy"? :)
Cameron, it won't be a wasteland until the oil companies are done with it. What natural, unspoiled land do you normally call a "wasteland"? You're making it sound like a garbage dump with fleas flying around. It's really disgraceful that as 1 of the richest, most privileged countries on earth, we still stoop to destroying what we have so someone can get more $ for it. I suppose the coal country of W. VA, the mtn tops that have been bulldozed and streams plowed over with excess rocks is just a barren wasteland where only a few people live, so who cares. You sound like such a Republican!!
Dean isn't crazy, just exuberant.
Ellen, I believe it was Kristoff, the NY Times columnist who described it as a wasteland. In my mind a dump and a wasteland are different. A wasteland basically means there's nothing there. Ever been through the Mojave desert, or Utah Salt Flats. I would call those wastelands. The area in dispute is tundra with very little vegitation. It's basically a frozen marsh. Would many ever notice if oil rigs were put in? No. The main ones who would -- the Eskimos in the region, are all for drilling. You do have the occasional tourist, but that's a rarity.
I don't think it's fair to compare drilling with oil in Alaska to the strip mining that happened in W VA. Oil drilling of today doesn't involve excavation like coal mining used to.Also, I've designed roadways and I've seen the ecological impact reports that our environmentalists/scientists write for various government agancies. You'd be suprised at how little a two lane road will impact local wildlife. Really, roadway designers are very sensitive to ecological cycles, etc. They have to be. If they weren't sesitive the fed government would fine the heck out of them. It's simply not worth the expense of being fined so heavily to make a mistake and accidentally develop an ecologically sensitive area. Drilling in Alaska is worthwhile as long as we explore alternative fuel sources while we use the one in Alaska. No matter how much oil they predict is there, it's not going to last forever. I think it was in the state of the union address a couple of years ago that Bush mentioned federal grants for research into hydrogen fuel for cars. That's an important step in solving our energy woes; I'm happy that Bush is supportive of efforts to reduce our dependance on oil. I wish he'd have received more attention from the media about it; more media attention would have relieved many people's fears that we were just looking for more oil and not up to exploring alternatives.