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To: Dale Baker who wrote (186941)4/12/2012 3:04:01 PM
From: Cogito
of 374514
>>CNBC just mentioned a new pizza with hot dogs stuffed into the crust. Bleccccccccccccccccchhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.<<

Oh, for God's sake. What the hell is wrong with us?

Only in America would something that horrible seem like a good idea.

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To: Cogito who wrote (186943)4/12/2012 3:07:57 PM
From: Dale Baker
of 374514
And it wasn't some local pizza shop trying to get attention for being gross - it's on the Pizza Hut menu now, I'm pretty sure they said.

I've decided that if people want to eat themselves to death, fine, just don't ask for my sympathy or my attendance at the funeral.

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To: Dale Baker who wrote (186944)4/12/2012 3:09:28 PM
From: Dale Baker
of 374514
Sabato's take on VPs:

Our thoughts on the Republican VP field possibilities are below:

CandidateKey AdvantagesKey Disadvantages
First Tier
Rob Portman
Senator, OH
•Reinforces economic message
•Former OMB director
•From key swing state
•Safest of the safe picks
•Bush connection
•Ticket = white bread sandwich
•Held responsible for budget problems
Marco Rubio
Senator, FL
•From most valuable swing state
•Rising star
•Popular with Tea Party
•Vetting issues regarding family
•Seems unenthusiastic about Romney
•Too fresh a fresh face?
Bobby Jindal
Governor, LA
•Sterling gubernatorial resume
•Diversity for GOP ticket
•State/Fed. experience
•Not nationally vetted
•Unremarkable SOTU response
•LA not competitive
Paul Ryan
Rep., WI
•Young & energetic
•Fiscal focus
•Swing state
•House member — has never even run statewide
•Has touched 3rd rail of politics too many times
Second Tier
Chris Christie
Governor, NJ
•Dynamic speaker
•(Might) put NJ in play
•Excite and energize GOP base
•Could overshadow top of the ticket
•Loose cannon
•High probability of controversy
•No regional, ideological, ethnic diversity
Jeb Bush
Fmr. Governor, FL
•Strong gubernatorial resume
•Hispanic connections
•Key swing state
•National Bush money & organization
•Wrong last name (Bush dynasty)
Tim Pawlenty
Fmr. Governor, MN
•Gov. experience
•White bread sandwich

•Probably can’t carry home state
•Bombed as POTUS candidate
Bob McDonnell
Governor, VA
•Willing and very available
•From important swing state

•Wouldn’t overshadow pres. candidate
•Transvaginal ultrasounds

•White bread sandwich + mayo
•Ties to Pat Robertson
Mitch Daniels
Governor, IN
•Fed. & state experience

•From ostensible swing state
•”Real guy” persona
•Safe choice
•Relatively uncharismatic
•IN accounting problems undermine budget expertise
•White bread sandwich
•Bush connection
Mike Huckabee
Fmr. Governor, AR
•Gov. experience
•Blue collar appeal, unlike Romney
•Appeals to Santorum voters
•Too far right on social issues
•From safe GOP state

•Moving on from politics?
Third Tier
Kelly Ayotte
Senator, NH
•Swing state
•Compatible with Romney
•Ran strong 2010 race
•No regional diversity
•Shades of Palin?
Brian Sandoval
Governor, NV
•Swing state
•Fmr. federal judge
•Judicial temperament
•1st term gov.
•Small state

•Too moderate for GOP base?
Susana Martinez
Governor, NM
•Hispanic female
•Swing state
•NRA appeal: great shot
•1st term gov.
•Shades of Palin?
•Immigration issue w/ grandparents

•Because of family responsibility for a disabled sister, Martinez has sworn she isn’t interested.
Bob Corker
Senator, TN
•White bread sandwich

•TN = automatic GOP
Condoleezza Rice
Fmr. Sec. of State
•Foreign policy experience
•Instills confidence
•Minority and woman
•Bush administration burdens
•Unlikely to run
•No electoral experience
Fourth Tier
Pat Toomey
Senator, PA
•Possible swing state
•Shores up Mitt’s right flank
•Tea Party favorite
•Too conservative
•Probably wouldn’t help ticket carry PA
John Thune
Senator, SD
•Seen as rising star
•From small state
•White bread sandwich
•SD = automatic GOP
Rand Paul
Senator, KY
•Tea Party favorite
•Would attract Ron Paul supporters
•Excites base
•Too libertarian?
•Held to account for father’s positions
Luis Fortuño
Governor, PR
•Would be unprecedented choice
•Young & energetic
•Totally unvetted
•PR has no electoral votes
Cathy McMorris Rodgers
Rep., WA
•Young & energetic
•Can’t carry home state
•House member
Richard Burr
Senator, NC
•Swing state
•Long Fed. experience
•White bread sandwich
David Petraeus
Dir. of CIA
•Military hero
•Substantive & smart
•Foreign policy experience
•Publicly apolitical — Obama appointee
•Party preference uncertain
•Reminder of GOP-led wars
J.C. Watts
Fmr. Rep., OK
•Fed. experience
•Popular with base
•Not from swing state

•Out of politics for awhile
•Was a House member

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To: Dale Baker who wrote (186944)4/12/2012 3:12:07 PM
From: Cogito
of 374514
>>And it wasn't some local pizza shop trying to get attention for being gross - it's on the Pizza Hut menu now, I'm pretty sure they said.<<

Next thing you know they'll be putting french fries in there. No, cheesy fries. No, wait. Chili cheese fries!

New Pizza Hut Chili Cheese Fries Crust Pizza. Yeah, that's the ticket.

Hey, do you think I could get a job at Pizza Hut with these brilliant ideas of mine?

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To: Dale Baker who wrote (186945)4/12/2012 3:14:22 PM
From: Cogito
of 374514
Right now, my bet would be on Ryan.

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To: Cogito who wrote (186946)4/12/2012 3:18:32 PM
From: Dale Baker
of 374514
Try suggesting pizza smoothies with all the other crap plus ice cream mixed in. Bound to be a huge hit.

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From: koan4/12/2012 3:24:45 PM
of 374514
Romney must be defeated at all costs and I think the best way to ensure that, is to keep the war on women the right wing is conducting front and center, and the best way to do that is to keep reminding people Romney said he would "end planned parenthood". I think that is an even better strategy than the Lilly Leadbetter comment.

Romney simply has no answer to that statement. That one statement could do him in. How does he answer it?

I would pound that statement home. It is best to just pick a couple of issues and pound on them because if you use too many issues it waters down their effectivness.

Romney has no response to his pledge to end planned parenthood, sort of like how Santorums rant against JFK probably did him in, in Mich

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From: Dale Baker4/12/2012 3:31:01 PM
of 374514
EJ Dionne: "Thus the box the primaries built for Romney: He must simultaneously court evangelical Christians and working-class voters who have eluded him so far and also reassure socially moderate women higher up the class ladder who, for now, are providing Obama with decisive margins. It’s not easy to do both.

Even if the most conservative Republicans who supported Santorum and Newt Gingrich largely fall into line out of antipathy to Obama, Romney still has to worry about whether they’ll be enthusiastic enough to turn out in the large numbers he’ll need. Yet if he concentrates on winning back upscale women, who now favor Obama by even larger margins than they gave him in 2008, Romney will only aggravate his enthusiasm problem on the right.

Romney’s predicament is Obama’s opportunity. The president is moving aggressively to take advantage of the class opening afforded him by the candidate of “a couple of Cadillacs,” “I like being able to fire people” and “corporations are people, my friend.” In a series of speeches in Florida the day Santorum withdrew, Obama hit repeatedly on the twin themes of fairness and opportunity. He called for a nation in which “everybody gets a fair shot, and everybody does a fair share, and everybody plays by the same set of rules,” while eviscerating Rep. Paul Ryan’s fiscal plan, which Romney supports, as a budget “that showers the wealthiest Americans with even more tax cuts.”

Most conservatives seem oblivious to the party’s working-class problem, but not all. Henry Olsen, a vice president at the American Enterprise Institute, says Republicans need to understand that the GOP’s success in the 2010 House races was built in less affluent districts at a moment when Obama’s approval rating among white working-class men was so low “that it was only a few points higher than Richard Nixon’s was at the time of his resignation.”

Olsen sees Obama’s echoes of Bill Clinton’s pledges to help those who “work hard and play by the rules” as shrewd politics aimed at rehabilitating his standing with such Americans. And in Romney, Obama faces a candidate whose “troubles in the primary electorate demonstrated his trouble in connecting with the white working class.” Romney, Olsen says, “has difficulties with his background, difficulties with his manner, some difficulties Obama shares.”

Romney isn’t losing downscale whites. The Post/ABC poll showed him leading Obama by 19 points among white voters without a college education. The problem: That’s roughly the lead John McCain had in this group in 2008, and we know who won that election. Obama, Olsen said, can lose the white working class “by a substantial margin” and still win because of his strength among African Americans, Latinos and well-educated women.

Yes, it’s still early. Renewed economic jitters in Europe could spoil a fragile U.S. recovery. But for now, Romney finds himself in a political maze with no obvious path out. He’s there partly because of his own mistakes, but he was also led to this point because of the unlikely strength of Rick Santorum’s challenge.

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To: Dale Baker who wrote (186950)4/12/2012 3:37:42 PM
From: Dale Baker
of 374514
Even the cranky old guy out on his lawn sees common sense sometimes....

Should the U.S. legalize hard drugs?
By George F. Will, Published: April 11

Amelioration of today’s drug problem requires Americans to understand the significance of the 80-20 ratio. Twenty percent of American drinkers consume 80 percent of the alcohol sold here. The same 80-20 split obtains among users of illicit drugs.

About 3 million people — less than 1 percent of America’s population — consume 80 percent of illegal hard drugs. Drug-trafficking organizations can be most efficiently injured by changing the behavior of the 20 percent of heavy users, and we are learning how to do so. Reducing consumption by the 80 percent of casual users will not substantially reduce the northward flow of drugs or the southward flow of money.

Consider current policy concerning the only addictive intoxicant currently available as a consumer good — alcohol. America’s alcohol industry, which is as dependent on the 20 percent of heavy drinkers as they are on alcohol, markets its products aggressively and effectively. Because marketing can drive consumption, America’s distillers, brewers and vintners spend $6 billion on advertising and promoting their products. Americans’ experience with marketing’s power inclines them to favor prohibition and enforcement over legalization and marketing of drugs.

But this choice has consequences: More Americans are imprisoned for drug offenses or drug-related probation and parole violations than for property crimes. And although America spends five times more jailing drug dealers than it did 30 years ago, the prices of cocaine and heroin are 80 to 90 percent lower than 30 years ago.

In “Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know,” policy analysts Mark Kleiman, Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken argue that imprisoning low-ranking street-corner dealers is pointless: A $200 transaction can cost society $100,000 for a three-year sentence. And imprisoning large numbers of dealers produces an army of people who, emerging from prison with blighted employment prospects, can only deal drugs. Which is why, although a few years ago Washington, D.C., dealers earned an average of $30 an hour, today they earn less than the federal minimum wage ($7.25).

Dealers, a.k.a. “pushers,” have almost nothing to do with initiating drug use by future addicts; almost every user starts when given drugs by a friend, sibling or acquaintance. There is a staggering disparity between the trivial sums earned by dealers who connect the cartels to the cartels’ customers and the huge sums trying to slow the flow of drugs to those street-level dealers. Kleiman, Caulkins and Hawken say that, in developed nations, cocaine sells for about $3,000 per ounce — almost twice the price of gold. And the supply of cocaine, unlike that of gold, can be cheaply and quickly expanded. But in the countries where cocaine and heroin are produced, they sell for about 1 percent of their retail price in the United States. If cocaine were legalized, a $2,000 kilogram could be FedExed from Colombia for less than $50 and sold profitably here for a small markup from its price in Colombia, and a $5 rock of crack might cost 25 cents. Criminalization drives the cost of the smuggled kilogram in the United States up to $20,000. But then it retails for more than $100,000.

People used to believe enforcement could raise prices but doubted that higher prices would decrease consumption. Now they know consumption declines as prices rise but wonder whether enforcement can substantially affect prices.

Kleiman, Caulkins and Hawken urge rethinking the drug-control triad of enforcement, prevention and treatment because we have been much too optimistic about all three.

And cartels have oceans of money for corrupting enforcement because drugs are so cheap to produce and easy to renew. So it is not unreasonable to consider modifying a policy that gives hundreds of billions of dollars a year to violent organized crime.

Marijuana probably provides less than 25 percent of the cartels’ revenue. Legalizing it would take perhaps $10 billion from some bad and violent people, but the cartels would still make much more money from cocaine, heroin and methamphetamines than they would lose from marijuana legalization.

Sixteen states and the District have legalized “medical marijuana,” a messy, mendacious semi-legalization that breeds cynicism regarding law. In 1990, 24 percent of Americans supported full legalization. Today, 50 percent do. In 2010, in California, where one-eighth of Americans live, 46 percent of voters supported legalization, and some opponents were marijuana growers who like the profits they make from prohibition of their product.

Would the public health problems resulting from legalization be a price worth paying for injuring the cartels and reducing the costs of enforcement? We probably are going to find out.

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To: Dale Baker who wrote (186948)4/12/2012 3:39:06 PM
From: Cogito
of 374514
>>Try suggesting pizza smoothies with all the other crap plus ice cream mixed in. Bound to be a huge hit.<<

Oh, you're good. I think we both have a future in this area. ;-)

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