What’s Wrong with Mitt

Home-headsWhat aren't conservatives rallying around Mitt Romney? I don't think it's because the other candidates are so strong. It's simply because Mitt is a terrible candidate. He's coming into these debates over caffeinated and over prepared. He breathless tries to get out every answer that he and his advisers have agonized over for hours. He's too anxious to cover up his weaknesses. He's so wooden and robotic that he makes Al Gore look like Mr. Natural. 

He also is completely clueless about how to deal with the fact that he's fabulously wealthy. Last night, he again bragged that he made Kennedy take out a second mortgage on his house when they were running for office. It was a mean spirited, nasty remark. In a previous debate, he said that his father told him that nobody running for office should have to take a mortgage out on his house. Like only the wealthy should run for office. Like politics should be a hobby of the rich. 

He put off showing his tax returns, because he knew that it would annoy people that he only pays 15% taxes every year. Money earned passively through investments should be taxed at the same rate as money earned actively. 

Mitt may still end up winning the nomination. He has a well funded campaign, and he's backed by party elites, but the average voter is having a hard time pulling the ballot for him. 

A Blogging Dinosaur

A friend sent me a link to an interesting article about online college education and the unbundling of universities. It reminded me of a blog post that I wrote years ago, and so I dug around to find it. Back in August of 2003, I predicted that we would see more and more of online college education and that it would make it even harder for people like me to find jobs. 

It's funny to read this random thought that I had nine years ago. I was such a kid. I had only been blogging for a few weeks. My kids were babies and we were living in a crappy apartment in Manhattan with annoying neighbors. I was skinny. I was writing academic papers and teaching at a university. We were house hunting. Then we moved

I often think I should stop blogging about my personal life. Those posts invite judgement, and that criticism hurts much more than criticism about my views of politics or pop culture. Any criticism of my kids makes me breath fire. But of all those old posts, it is the personal posts that I treasure the most. 

The Walk of Shame

Over the weekend, I told my dad about our new favorite show, Shameless on Showtime. William H. Macy plays a fall down on the floor type of drunk, who scams the system for social security and disability checks which he blows on booze at the corner pub, while his kids raise themselves and pick his pocket to pay the electricity bill. They live in Chicago next to the L, which shakes their house as it rumbles by. Dad didn't think it was so funny, because he grew up in a drunken, dysfunctional family in Chicago.

I tried to explain that the show is so engaging despite the poverty and the alcoholism, because I think we relate more to this imperfect family more than the families in shows like Parenthood. The Shameless house has crap on the kitchen counters. The kids shove a bowl of Cheerios in their mouths before they rush off to school. The kids aren't wearing nice clothes or waking up with a face of makeup. There's no time for long soul searching discussions among family members. There's lots of running around and drinking. Hair is thrown into messy ponytails. The kids aren't on the honor roll. Well, one is, but he's trading in his tutoring skills for blowjobs. 

I think a lot of have abandoned the idea of the perfect family and are embracing our weird and unhealthy selves.