Crist, you know it ain’t easy

There was an interesting discussion in Bernard’s anti-Hagel post about whether or not someone’s party affiliation matters as much as someone’s stated views on policies and issues. Personally, I feel that when it comes to Congres, party affiliation is all that matters, but for cabinet nominees, I care more about policy positions. I’d take Chuck Hagel over Chuck Schumer as Secretary of Defense (or anywhere else related to foreign policy) any day.

I wonder how people feel about the related questions of embracing party switchers like Charlie Crist. I’m for taking them, as long as they aren’t ridiculous Blue Dog types (I don’t think Crist is). If Crist becomes governor as a Democrat, it sends a message to other non-crazy Republicans that they can leave the teahadists behind and still have a viable political career:

Crist would start out as the favorite in a showdown with Scott. He leads 53-39, most notably taking a whooping 29% of the Republican vote. He still has some residual appeal to Republican voters. Crist isn’t the only Democrat who could give Scott trouble for reelection though.

Girlfriend in a coma

I find this story fascinating:

Notre Dame’s Manti Te’o, the stories said, played this season under a terrible burden. A Mormon linebacker who led his Catholic school’s football program back to glory, Te’o was whipsawed between personal tragedies along the way. In the span of six hours in September, as Sports Illustrated told it, Te’o learned first of the death of his grandmother, Annette Santiago, and then of the death of his girlfriend, Lennay Kekua.


Did you enjoy the uplifiting story, the tale of a man who responded to adversity by becoming one of the top players of the game? If so, stop reading.

Wednesday Evening Open Thread: The Internet Is for Cats

I’m probably late to this party, but as a fan of Men in Black, I find it amusing nonetheless. From the Guardian:

There is a hacker terrorising Japan with a computer virus, bomb threats and riddles. Meanwhile, a stray cat wandering a small island near Tokyo holds important clues on its collar. This is no movie. This happened this week. An unnamed hacker in Japan really did leave a memory card on a stray cat’s collar, and journalists and authorities really did have to crack a few riddles to locate said ownerless feline.

If befuddled agents of the NPA (National Police Agency) didn’t already get the point, they should now: they are being toyed with, and the lack of headway they’ve made after months of taunting is more than a little embarrassing. This is after the NPA “extracted” what appears to be false confessions from four suspects, who have been recently released. The hacker is clearly trying to paint authorities as inept, and succeeding.

So far, according to Wired, Japanese authorities have only been able to identify two things about the hacker: one, he or she programs in the popular programming language C#, and two, he or she knows how to use proxies so they can post on the largest text-based forum on the internet, 2channel. While western audiences might not be familiar with 2channel, its US equivalent 4chan should ring a bell…

No motive for this hacker has surfaced yet, but the possibility that this is a big protest against the country’s new anti-piracy law – a measure that went into effect in October 2012 that means offenders can be imprisoned for up to two years – can’t be ruled out. Of course, this could just be a teen flexing his or her cyber muscles and trying to make a name for themselves, an always important cause to a young internet citizen….

Apart from herding cats, what’s going on in your neighborhoods?

Got no reason, what the heck

Just because (h/t reader AJ):

Last year my in-laws got us a motion-activated soap dispenser which turned out to be the absolute perfect thing for our powder room.

Standing athwart history, yelling WOLVERINES

I welcome the recent spate of “Dude, where’s my GOP?” pieces from conservatives. Contemporary American politics is dominated by the insanity of one of the two major parties, and establishment media generally ignores this reality, so good on some righties for not ignoring it. Mark McKinnon writes:

It’s a very odd situation when the losing party is the party refusing to negotiate. It may be how you disrupt, but it is not how you govern, or how you ever hope to regain a majority.

He then predictably goes on to talk about all the compromises Ronaldus Magnus made. His list is accurate, but sometimes I wonder…contemporary conservatism prides itself in “standing athwart history, yelling `stop'” (in William F. Buckley’s words), why is it surprising that conservatives would be happy to disrupt when they no longer have the votes to govern?