Did anyone do more than look at Sarah Palin’s picture before offering her the veep slot? I’d say having your spouse be a member of a secessionist party is probably more damning than having them, say, write a thesis about racism in the Ivy League.
Hilarious dissection of Google’s blog posting announcing the new Chrome browser.
Security = privacy? Does Google Chrome have any better anti-phishing, anti-CSS, or anti-malware features? If not, why bother building a new browser?
Or, where the really, really shitty iPhone apps come from: business plans! With synergy! And corporate sponsorship! You gotta be kidding me.
Am I nuts, or does this sound like a new malware vector? Still, lyrics would be nice…
Interesting approach allowing cross-domain interaction between data and functionality in a secure way.
Open source media player alternative to Front Row gets facelift.
On being Alec Baldwin. No, wait. The article is actually funny.
Day: September 2, 2008
Sarah Palin’s morning in America
So far, John McCain’s nomination of Sarah Palin on the basis of a 15 minute interview is proving to be the best illustration of why you should carefully vet vice presidential candidates–particularly those who haven’t run for national office before.
I’m still trying to figure out whether this choice of McCain’s is desperate or brilliant. The arguments for both:
Desperate: This has the appearance of an appointment made in haste. It’s been established that Joe Lieberman, McCain’s first choice, was not acceptable to the Republican base, and it appears that Palin was picked very late in the game. All the indications are that Palin’s vetting was shallow; indeed, Talking Points Memo indicates that the Republican team has just now hit the ground in Alaska to do the deep digging. And certainly the ongoing information suggesting that Palin used her office to try to force the firing of her sister’s ex-husband, and that she did fire his boss when she couldn’t get the ex-brother-in-law fired, suggests that McCain’s team was not aware of this abuse of power on Palin’s part. As does the unfortunate situation with her daughter. As do her misleading statements about her support for the Bridge to Nowhere (brief: she supported it before she condemned it). As does her apparent past membership in the Alaska Independence Party.
Brilliant: McCain needed to differentiate himself from Obama while seizing hold of the “change” meme to pick up independent voters, but he also had to play to his base, who were late to fall in line behind the one-time “maverick.” Picking Palin on the basis of who she was (conservative, anti-choice, pro-guns, a short history as a reformer) helped shore up the base.
But more than this, maybe there’s a new calculus in play, a short-term thought process that says that the American people are going to be more likely to think whether a candidate for the second highest office in the land is “like them” than they are to worry about the person’s fitness for the job. In this short-term way of thinking, someone can be good to vote for simply because they are empathetic, because the voter wants to be that person. It’s kind of a “politician as celebrity” play.
Whether the choice, which looks to me like pandering, will work is still at play. Gallup and Rasmussen both show Obama widening his lead over McCain after the pick, primarily by picking up undecided voters. But polls have been wrong before.
See also: Why Palin should be taken seriously (Scripting News).
Update: Illuminating in light of the above: McCain campaign manager Rick Davis says “This election is not about issues. This election is about a composite view of what people take away from these candidates.” So in other words, the McCain camp is betting on the celebrity view of politics that I describe above. Which is ironic, given their ads bashing Obama for being a celebrity.
The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred
Shaking off the weekend (and a very nice weekend it was!), we’ll get things started slowly today, with a little meme. Thanks to Estaminet for the tag. Looks like I’m hitting 89%, so contrary to past expectations I don’t truly eat everything.
- Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
- Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
- Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
- Optional extra: Post a comment at www.verygoodtaste.co.uk linking to your results.
- Nettle tea
- Huevos rancheros
- Steak tartare
- Black pudding (in London and Dublin)
- Cheese fondue (a childhood favorite)
- Borscht (a favorite recipe of my late aunt)
- Baba ghanoush
- Calamari (any way I can)
- PB&J sandwich
- Aloo gobi (curried potatoes and cauliflower)
- Hot dog from a street cart
- Epoisses (how on earth did I miss this? I really love a good stinky cheese)
- Black truffle
- Fruit wine made from something other than grapes (rhubarb!)
- Steamed pork buns (nyaaghm!)
- Pistachio ice cream (Tosci’s)
- Heirloom tomatoes (is there another kind? not on a biscuit, there’s not)
- Fresh wild berries
- Foie gras
- Rice and beans
- Brawn, or head cheese
- Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper (I guess what I’m trying the next time I make Thai food)
- Dulce de leche
- Bagna cauda (I think this calls for a little fondue/bagna cauda party!)
- Wasabi peas (favorite office snack ever)
- Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl (overrated)
- Salted lassi
- Sauerkraut (the best was my grandmother’s, usually buried outside in the winter to cure)
- Root beer float
- Cognac with a fat cigar
- Clotted cream tea
- Vodka jelly/Jell-O (alas.)
- Curried goat
- Whole insects (not any time soon, either.)
- Phaal (anyone know an Indian restaurant around Boston that serves this? Sounds like a challenge)
- Goat’s milk (not knowingly, anyway)
- Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
- Fugu (not yet.)
- Chicken tikka masala
- Eel (mmm, unagi)
- Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
- Sea urchin
- Prickly pear
- McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
- Dirty gin martini
- Beer above 8% ABV (oh yes)
- Poutine (not yet!)
- Carob chips (although not on purpose)
- Sweetbreads (mmm, thymus!)
- Kaolin (in all likelihood, but not on purpose)
- Durian (I had to look this up)
- Frogs’ legs
- Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake (or all of the above!)
- Haggis (I really want to. Preferably with a stiff Scotch nearby)
- Fried plantain
- Chitterlings, or andouillette (I’ve always been curious about the chitlins preparation though)
- Caviar and blini (thanks, Caroline and Russ!)
- Louche absinthe (thanks, Dan and the Cheeselords)
- Gjetost, or brunost (yay, European breakfast buffets)
- Roadkill (nope. I’m Southern with Appalachian roots, but not that Southern or Appalachian.)
- Baijiu (sigh, another unique alcoholic beverage to try)
- Hostess Fruit Pie
- Snail (oh wow. Jetlagged plus escargot = sublime)
- Lapsang souchong
- Tom yum (I make a mean tom yum)
- Eggs Benedict
- Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant
- Kobe beef
- Flowers (rose gelato and fried zucchini flowers ftw!)
- Horse (not knowingly)
- Criollo chocolate
- Spam (spam spam spam)
- Soft shell crab
- Rose harissa (sounds good)
- Catfish (every summer Friday growing up–thanks, Denbigh Methodist Church)
- Mole poblano
- Bagel and lox
- Lobster Thermidor (I like ’em better just steamed)
- Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee