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Archive for the ‘My Soapbox’ Category

I don’t want to be presumptuous about the election, but I am going to go out on a limb and say I truly believe folks are going to be coming out of the wood works tomorrow. I worry, however of a number of voter issues that will clog the system up- among them voter fraud (from all parties); voter purging (especially in swing states), and very, very, long lines in a number of states because of a variety of issues (not enough poll workers, faulty machines and insufficent time).

That’s why I am advising the following steps or rather throwing out some advice to help counter these issues!

  • Make sure you are REGISTERED to vote and you haven’t been purged! Visit this link http://www.canivote.org/
  • Make sure you know where to vote at! This is located on your voter registration card and should be available at the above link as well.
  • Have PROPER identification– a DL or state ID is sufficient enough, so long as you haven’t had a name change without updating your DL. If that’s the case, it never hurts to bring that trusty marriage license or another form of idenity along just in case. If there’s an issue and they try to turn you away, ask for a provisional ballot, this allows you to vote and then contest whether you are registered after the election.
  • Now, if you have moved and haven’t changed your DL with your correct address- you should be able to vote in your old precinct, although this is technically frowned upon, but so long as you haven’t changed the DL address or updated your voter registration, it shouldn’t matter. If you have updated either, you will be turned away at the old precinct and will have to travel to the new one. So be forewarned!
  • Many states have strict laws that prohibit any campaigning within a set amount of yards of the polling location- VA is one of these states. However, I had never heard of someone wearing a shirt being asked to leave (so long as they weren’t campaigning and simply voting) until recently on the news. Therefore, to be on the safe side, you might want to fore-go the Obama or McCain paraphernalia until after you vote.
  • DON’T pay attention to any flyers folks hand out about candidates, sometimes they are false to mislead voters (although, if the polling place is doing their job- no one will be campaigning within 500 feet or so of the building. And, pay no attention to emails claiming you can’t vote a straight ticket to get your vote to count- these are bogus and another ploy by parties to change the vote.
  • A new concept taking place to try to initiate election reform needed within our election process includes video-taping the waiting process and the way election officials conduct polling. I think this is a very good idea if we are to prevent the same scenarios of 2000 that played out. Here’s a link to find out more about this movement: www.videothevote.org (There’s two really GOOD videos you SHOULD watch on this site!!)
  • Last, but not least the BEST TIME to VOTE is during the non-rush hours to vote! Forget about going right before work at 8:45 a.m. and the last chance vote on your ride home at 5:30 p.m. because this will ensure that you are going to be standing in line for a VERY, VERY, LONG TIME! Lunch is also a bad time. To be really smart, either get up REALLY early and go when the polls first open, which are 5 a.m. (depending on your state) or go around 2 p.m.- both of these times have the least amount of folks trying to vote. Yet, most importantly- don’t get discouraged if you do get caught in a long line and REMEMBER exactly why you are voting and how there are still many people in this world that are not afforded the opportunity to vote.
  • Also you are AFFORDED by Law to leave WORK to VOTE!!
  • Polling hours are as follows: Voting operating hours in most states like California, Alaska, Delaware, Wisconsin, Maryland, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Utah, and Montana, the poll will open at 7 AM and will close at 8PM. Voting operating hours in some states like Georgia, South Dakota, Mississippi, Texas, Nevada, Oklahoma and Florida is from 7 AM to 7 PM, Virginia 6 AM and will close at 8PM, Alabama and Arkansas are from 8 AM to 6 PM, New York is from 6 AM to 9 PM, Indiana is from 6 AM to 6 PM, Arizona and Missouri are from 6 AM to 7 PM, Colorado is from 9 AM to 7 PM, Hawaii is from 7 AM to 6 PM, Connecticut, Washington and Illinois are from 6 AM to 7 PM, Idaho, Tennessee, and Nebraska is from 8 AM to 8 PM, Kentucky is from 5 AM to 8 PM, North Dakota and Rhode Island are from 7 AM to 9PM, and Vermont is from 5 AM to 7 PM. (Be sure to check your local election office to be sure, though!)

Shesshh, I hope you guys got all that!

Whatcha’ waiting on….oh, yeah we still have another six hours before the polls open.

I want a head count, so REGARDLESS of who you are and who you voted for, I would LOVE to see a polling of how many folks visiting my site have voted. SO, if you are reading this be sure to post a comment stating that you have voted!!!! Also, you never know I might randomly choose someone to win a prize!!

RULES:

1. Polling begins at 5 am EST and ends at 9 pm EST.

2. Be nice and do not badger each other, be respectful of all COMMENTS!

3. One comment per name (A simple “I voted” is fine or let us know what you encountered while voting, was it a smooth transition? did I give good advice or was I way off base? Is there anything you want other voters to know or be aware of? Anything and everything, just be sure to make a comment!!)

4. If you want to win something, then leave an email otherwise simply make up a name (Mickey Mouse is registered to vote by the way!) 

5. Link here if you have a site.

6. Take this poll ——>>>

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Is it just me or does Target have WAY TOO MANY handicap parking spaces? Now, don’t get me wrong…I don’t have anything against handicap folks or the need for handicap parking spaces, but come on is it really necessary to have sooooo many?

Call me crazy, but I think that Target is a bit excessive in their attempt to appease the handicap population. It makes me wonder if they were once sued for not having enough parking spaces for the handicap. I mean seriously I counted 20. TWENTY. SPACES.

It never fails that when I arrive I can never find a parking space closer than 5 spaces back. (Although, ironically tonight for the FIRST time EVER, I did find one 2 spaces back….so I guess I should retract that comment.) No, on second thought, this has to be a fluke. Sorta like a slap in the face from God for being inconsiderate and counting out all the handicap spaces. I should be ashamed of myself, but seriously in all my time visiting the Target here, I have never been able to park very close to the entrance. Until. tonight.

Now, this never really matter much to me until I was pregnant. (An expecting parking space sure would have been nice. Of course, who cares about us mothers!) And, then in the first 4 months before I braved using the Baby Bjorn, hauling his car seat over to the cart across the parking lot and adjusting it to the unwilling seating area was painful enough to say the least. It was an ordeal that took a good ten minutes. Then, I worried relentlessly that his car seat may suddenly fall off the cart if a sudden move occurred or say, I let go for more than two seconds. No make that one second. Yes, I am a bit compulsive. I know this and I admit it. 

But, hey this isn’t about me and my tendencies- so, let’s get back on point. I think the biggest complaint I have from the parking spaces are that they are usually empty and the other twenty non handicap spaces that are located sparingly around the handicap spaces are ALL full. What would this tell the logical thinking person?

On a happier note, I did purchase a pretty red ‘green bag’ from Target with a cute design on it. Isn’t it cute and only .99 cents. It’s just as roomy as my others, too.

Target_bag

So, I guess this means we’re even. I will take my bag and succumb to the overwhelming number of handicap parking spaces for the sake of being green. And, while I am at it, I will be THANKFUL that I do not need to use one of those parking spaces. So there, hopefully I have redeemed myself for being so unkind. 😉

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Ok, so yes I usually write something a bit green on Sundays. But, the best I can do tonight is mention that I went to my local city government to find out about their recycling program. Good thing is, they have a program. Bad thing is, we aren’t included in the city- no, we are in the county.

During a ‘neighborhood get-together’ Saturday, I spoke to some neighbors about getting it in our neighborhood- but the old folkies aren’t willing to pay for the service! They outright told me so! Which, I wasn’t even aware they would extend the service to us (at least there was no mention while I was at the city building). Apparently, it is available for a select few for $11.50 a month.

I am irritated because I feel as if it is a bit SELFISH of these older folks to shun the idea because they aren’t willing to pay for the service. I mean this is to make our city cleaner. These neighbors stated they can just haul it off themselves! Well, I don’t have time to haul it off, I barely have time to set the trash out by the driveway every Sunday night, let alone get it all together in different containers and take it somewhere where I separate it into different dumpsters during certain business hours. That really seems like a bigger pain to me than setting it outside with your garbage. And, I wonder are they really ‘separating’ their garbage? And, is this selfish of me? 

Look, I know I should understand their reasoning- but, they have time on their hands. You know the time I’m talking about- the kind where you leave the garage door open, sit in the rocking chair inside that garage and watch what everyone in the neighborhood is doing or that make mental notes as to who needs to keep their yards up more (yeah, I know this already..)

So, I feel like I have the right to state that I think it SHOULD BE MANDATORY that a recycling program exist in my community or at least have a pick-up service AVAILABLE. I mean come on, most major cities have a mandatory program, so why shouldn’t we? Who decides this stuff anyway? The city board or council?

So, I am off this month in hopes of lighting a fire in my community, city and county on making recycling either available to those who want it or in making it mandatory. If anyone has ANY advice on how I can accomplish this goal – please, please, please let me know, I need all the help I can get on this one. BTW, am I being unreasonable?

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Although, I wish I could say I am talking about the small spin I took Garrett on today as I was sitting upstairs FIXING our Internet connection, I am not. I am talking about the rhetoric that Palin and yes, Biden at times conversed in last night. Unfortunately, I am only a little over half way finished watching the debate via You Tube. I didn’t get to watch the debate as planned because for a little over 20 hours we were without cable or internet! How unheard of is that! Anyway, I can promise that what I have heard thus far, is Biden afraid of jabbing Palin the wrong way least he get butchered for it by the media and an Alaskan governor dancing merrily around any type of answer to the questions.

From the get go, Palin managed to dodge the question. I mean think about it, who can give a grade if an answer is never given? I guess this can be considered a strategy, I consider it a ploy to cover your butt from saying the wrong thing. Although, from what I have watched she was more graceful, more akin to the smarty pants she was when she accepted her nomination. So, I guess she gets a C for that. Now, I’m not saying Biden is the greatest- but, I would take him any day of the week over her- because let’s face it at least he can counter comments about his beliefs and answer the questions being asked without resorting to name calling first or without having to resort to colloquialism in his speech just to appeal to the masses.

Bottom-line is, appealing to the masses shouldn’t be necessary because this shouldn’t be a popularity contest. It should be about the issues and what each one of them believe in, what their records are on whether they actually do hold these beliefs and vote accordingly and good Lord willing, what is in the BEST INTEREST of the children who will inherit this great land. Isn’t that what we should base our beliefs on?

Warning: Proceed at your own risk, skim over or skip…the following are my opinions on issues our country face.

WAR to me is not a necessity or a means to an end. Diplomacy should come first. We should stop the need to police the world and start policing here at home. Helping create JOBS here in the U.S. should come first, not tax breaks for big corporations overseas. New energy needs to be tapped, but we need a substainable future and we need to RATIFY the KYOTO PROTOCOL. (As much as we can be sustainable because unfortunately everything leaves a footprint.) We should be able to bare arms. Our children should have the opportunity to go to college for a REASONABLE amount of money and teachers should get better incentives/paid what they DESERVE based on a level of accountability (but, not as it is with the NCLB Act). Overall, we need extensive reform/restructuring of our education system- it is failing BIG TIME. Everyone should be afforded health care (even if it means raising taxes to do so and yes I have insurance, but I would more than willingly pay for health insurance that affords me to take off and be with my son under a medical leave act). Morally, I believe judgement by the color of your skin, gender, religion or sexual preference shouldn’t be passed. The right to life should be a woman’s decision, plain and simply- you have to live with yourself everyday. Our prison system is not reabilitation, but rather a money gussler and needs reforming and rethinking. I believe the word God should remain in our government documents, prayers, etc….but, religion should be separate from the state in matters of decision making.

(End of rant.)

With that said, I am also offering up a GREAT WEBSITE I recently was made aware of by a local radio station here at the beach (92.1) that gives you a breakdown of how HONEST the candidates are being. It checks their facts. So, when in doubt, check it out and maybe you might find something out you didn’t know about your choice or the other guy or gal. http://www.FactCheck.org

Another great site, to the right under the TITLE ‘Let’s Get Political’ is Political Compass. It’s a fun way to measure you true belief system with what the politicians believe. Give it a try, I guarantee you will be surprised.

And, as for me- simply tune out to my beliefs, skip over or skim over them until you get to the other stuff and try real hard not to hold it against me for being so political. It’s just in my nature and it has to do with my college major- International Studies. So, technically I cannot help myself. So purty peas….hang in there and continue reading my blog, like I said- my banter will significantly decrease in another month or so…at least on the topic of the presidential election. 🙂

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Bikers that is.

Every autumn and every spring, Myrtle Beach falls prey to an influx of motorcycles. Three weeks long at three different times they arrive. One by one. On trailers and with RV’s. Not just a few- but, rather what appears to be thousands. They are everywhere and they are extremely loud. They wreck, they get drunk, they even die. In our quaint little beach town. Now, I have nothing against bikers, in general unless you count the traffic jams, the inability to leave windows down in the car at anytime of the day and listening to bikes through your front and back doors…around the clock for 4 straight nights. 

The 3 festivals of bike rallies here are horrible. So horrible that local ordinances are being tested as I type, with various strategies and regulations in the works to prevent their ‘free for all’ in our lovely little beach communities. I don’t mind that they are here- I mean it does bring in revenue and like I said I have nothing against the ‘husky smoking long haired -cut in front of me- bandana wearing leather pushers’ that arrive twice a year. Unless you count, the motorcycle that almost hit me as I was driving my newborn home one afternoon and he was crying hysterically at their LOUD A$$ motorcycles. Nor, do I have any beef for the ‘big black booty on the back of bikes’, either. (Try saying that one three times in a row!) But, I could do without seeing a thong and nothing else RIGHT in my face as I sit waiting for the light to turn green. Anyway, point is- they are welcome here.

Yet, with that welcome is the need to respect our communities and awknowledge that PEOPLE actually LIVE here with FAMILIES and believe that no matter what has been said, it isn’t a 24/7 brothal! Although, today I did ponder if it might be close to one. (Insert the AD on the radio for an ‘Amature’s Night’ at a local gentleman’s club for a free rack {=a.k.a. headlights, grill, boobs, breast} to the best dancer.) Yah, so very stylish and ever so sophisticated is my current residence.

Naturally, when I hear these things I wonder many times a week why we still live here.

See, and that’s the thing- that part of Myrtle Beach is secluded to say the least. Hidden, along with a sleu of other places I hope Garrett never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, sees. (And yes, that was me that frequented the bars lining Broadway- once coined by a friend as the ‘Red Light District’ of the U.S. many, many months ago. Ages actually. But, we will not go there.)

Let’s be honest though, I know he will ‘see’ these things, these places- despite my attempts to shun him from them. I only hope when he does see them they do not corrupt him and that he has enough moral character to resist their temptation or fascination.

In retrospect, I suppose this post is as much about my desire to find a place that is ‘family friendly’ for us to call home as it is about bikers invading the one we have now. I know they are here on vacation, but when they arrive they muddy the waters and make me rethink my sanity for living here.

I guess, I secretly hope these regulations will remind them that the person in the car beside them isn’t on vacation. Neither are they a stripper at a club to be gawked at from the sideview mirror. And that person you are staring at, has a baby in their car and the noise is infiltrating the glass bubble in which that baby lives and this mommy is simply NOT ready for YOU of all people to bust it. Because, we live here in this beautiful beach town unlike you, your bikes, the bandanas or the thongs.

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***NOTE: This post contains graphic pictures and links to 2 videos with graphic images on animals.

I swear I’m almost done with my political rantings…just give me one more month. (Ok, I don’t swear, but they will be considerly less by then.) So, here’s some more of the same concerning that ‘pretty face’ eyeing the White House. This is written by a friend and family member; it definitely warrants an audience- maybe just maybe it might open some eyes.

 The original post can be found here.

09/27/08 10:12AM 
Wrong Woman, Wrong Message…
I love that I live in a country where I am entitled to have my own opinion as well as the freedom of speech.  I love that I get the opportunity to vote, seeing as one time women were not allowed to.  I have to admit that I have contemplated what difference my vote for president would really make during the elections. I always come to the conclusion that the government and its politicians only have power because we as a people give it to them through our collective consent.

Therefore, this is my blog and my opinion.  I am not writing this blog to try and persuade others to vote the way I do.  I am writing this because I feel the need to voice some issues that are near and dear to my heart, as well as most likely many people have no idea that this is going on.  I am writing this solely because I care about the environment and animals, and they don’t have a voice.

So if you are interested in continuing onward, you will find some information that I have been researching on a certain Republican party candidate who is currently Governor of Alaska.  You will also view some gruesome pictures along with two videos, so get mentally prepared.  Again, this is just one of many reasonings as to why this heartless candidate will not be getting my vote.

*  SHE offers a bounty of $150 for each left front leg of freshly killed wolves.

* SHE promotes aerial hunting of wolves even though Alaskans voted twice to ban it. SHE uses $400,000 of state money to fund a propaganda campaign in support of aerial hunting. SHE believes that the trophy hunters should have no competition when it comes to hunting.

* SHE supports the use of state money to slaughter black and grizzly bears including cubs with the goal being to kill at least 60 percent of the population.  Again the reason for their executions is so that the moose and caribou populations will increase and give opportunity to the trophy hunters.

*SHE strongly supports drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.  It is home to hundreds of caribou who use the refuge as a calving ground, more than one million migratory birds, and countless other wildlife.  It’s the most important onshore denning habitat for female polar bears.  Senator McCain himself has repeatedly voted to protect this pristine wilderness area. 

* SHE is suing the federal government to prevent listing the polar bear as an endangered species.  SHE has argued that the “ice-dependent polar bear”, the first mammal granted Endangered under the Endangered Species Act because of global warming, “does not need additional protections”.  SHE argues that any development or activity requiring federal permits or using federal funds would have to engage in a “consultation” (which is mandated by the Endangered Species Act) process to ensure that the polar bears are not harmed.  SHE believes that the “consultation” “is a long and time-consuming process, and it’s basically a big time-and-money waster”.  Her conclusion, the polar bear isn’t worth it.

*SHE opposes the listing of the Cook Inlet beluga whales to threatened due to pressures ranging from pollution and toxins in the water to increased ship traffic.  She believes that if the belugas were listed as threatened, it may hinder oil and gas development ($).  And just for the record, since she apparently overlooked this memo, the Cook Inlet beluga whale numbers have decreased from 1300 in the 1980s to about 350 today. 

* SHE believes that man-made global warming is a farce!!!!!!  She refuses to believe or support that man-made fossil fuel emissions are responsible for global warming, defying worldwide scientific consensus.  And her drill-keep drilling-drill forever approach to energy issues will do nothing to ease the causes of global warming, promote the use of clean, renewable energy sources, or break our addiction to foreign oil. 

When it comes to animals, you won’t hear her talking about pro-life. The only thing SHE said in her speech at the Republican National Convention that (allegedly) wasn’t scripted was that she’s a “pit bull wearing lipstick”. What an insult to pit bulls! Because they’re often raised to be violent (always the people’s fault), they have an undeserved reputation for bloodthirstiness. SHE was raised that way, too, but at what point should a cruel human know better? Her need to want to destroy wolves and bears is bogus and I find it sad that she is from the great vast state of Alaska. I personally don’t think she has a clue about supporting the natural predator/prey balance and it is obvious that if this is her ability to look at a situation that has clear divisions between the right and wrong action and she is capable of coming down on the wrong side in spite of the obvious correct course of action, she is simply incapable of making balanced decisions. I understand that some people who refuse to live in a civilized society still have to hunt animals for their food, but there is a humane way of doing so.  This issue reminds me alot of the sealions in the pacific northwest being executed for eating salmon. Who would have ever thought that animals would be killed for doing what they are suppose to do naturally? Like a wise friend of mine said…..it’s kinda like a sniper sitting on the top of the grocery store when we go to get our food……..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQobIUE1zTU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6T85cOGc8L0

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I hate to do this, I really, really do. I know many of you probably shun at political talk on blogs, but I hope you will remain a reader, irregardless of your own beliefs because quite frankly someone needs to have the cohones to speak up about this ‘mess in the mini-skirt’. In this day and age, I think it is imperative that we care and make a stand for what we believe is right and/or wrong in this world. I think it’s important to understand that problems do not go away and cannot be swept under the carpet. Our whole political system needs to be reformed, yet as I have stated before the only way that will happen is when we actually PAY ATTENTION to the folks we elect into our local offices.

But, back to the matter at hand- I am flabbergasted that people would even think of electing someone because of their gender or race. So there, I mean that for the candidate I support as well. However, I hope that some of those folks voting for these reasons, take a closer look at how ignorant this woman is about politics. Everyone though Bush was bad, well you haven’t seen anything yet. (Take a look at her interview with Katie Couric.) She’s been bullshitting everyone since her days dressed as a ‘bulldog with lipstick’ it seems. She’s straight out of the high school SCA, elected because she was popular and pretty. I imagine some things will never change. Of course, she can give you an answer for anything, but it’s save to say she’s simply trying to dodge all those bullets rightfully aimed at her head. I think the lady has obviously bitten off more than she can chew. And for some reason, word is that McCain is trying to cancel the debate for tomorrow night- maybe in an attempt to further prep his own running mate. (Who’s slated to debate with Biden on October 2nd.) Perhaps, this latest ploy has everything to do with his running mate’s lack of knowledge and nothing to do with the current crisis at hand? Somebody, give me an amen.

Of course with that current crisis comes many more issues. Didn’t Republicans always support less government? I’ll save that for another day…my little one is ready for me to be a mommy not an activist or politician. Maybe, someone else should heed that advice, too?

(Edited after realizing I sound a bit like a blundering idiot when I am writing about politics at 1:30 a.m.)

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