Disclaimer

This blog is not intended to provide legal advice, legal services or legal anything else. Don't sue me. All I have is debt anyway.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Women and health

Here is a link to an excellent report from Planned Parenthood analyzing why McCain's health care plan would be disasterous for women (men too, but especially for women). Even if you aren't pro-choice, and might not like Planned Parenthood, you can't deny that McCain's "overhaul" of the insurance system would simply leave women stranded in many aspects of their health, not just in reproductive services. Not just poor women, or working class women either. Women like us, middle class, some even upper middle class, who depend on health insurance benefits to pay for our health care, and get those benefits through our employers. Women who make good choices about their health, but find themselves stricken with a medical condition anyway that requires expensive and long-term treatment. John McCain might be able to afford to pay his cancer treatments out of pocket (if he didn't have excellent insurance coverage through Congress, that is), but can you? I know I can't. They'd be foreclosing on my house like everyone else's.

Just because John McCain added someone with a vagina to his ticket, doesn't mean he cares about women's issues. He doesn't; his extensive voting record reflects that. Sarah Palin certainly doesn't support women, not even those who are victims; her administration in Wasilla was the reason Alaska even needed legislation to require the government to pay for evidence collection from rape victims.

With the economy in shambles, we can't let McCain completely tank the already failing health care system too. Don't sit around and let this happen. Speak out.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Baby talk

I've been neglecting the "mom in law school" portion of the blog, in favor of the much more interesting topic of politics, especially regarding foreign policy, which is my big interest. But as LL points out, you don't really feel motivated to write when things are just going well and there's nothing notable to point out.

I should, however, discuss our balancing act going on to make this semester work. That's what this blog's supposed to be about, right? Babies in law school? Anyway.

This semester, I am working three days a week, and taking 15 hours. Mondays and Tuesdays are my long days. Mondays I work from 9 to 1:30, and am in class for six and a half hours straight. That's four classes back to back, two one-hour classes, a two-hour class, and a two-and-a-half hour class. I get up in the morning to see Cora for about 15 minutes, and see her for another half hour or so before bedtime. My mom watches her the entire time. Husband usually works Sunday nights, so he'll spend a couple hours with Cora before my mom gets there, then he goes to bed and usually works Monday nights too (except for days he has class on Tuesdays, which is every other week). Mondays are also a little crazy trying to figure out when to eat. Sometimes I eat an early lunch at the office, then grab something on the way to campus and eat it during class. (This resulted in me chowing down on a salad the other day in Scientific Evidence while the forensic pathologist was showing us a graphic slide-show presentation of autopsy photos involving firearm homicide/suicides. That stuff doesn't bother me, but some of my more squeamish classmates were looking at me in horror that I was actually eating during this. Hey, I'm hungry, deal with it.) When I get home, I get Cora ready for bed, eventually kick my mom out, and barely glance at the BA reading for the next day, because my brain is too tired to do anything else. I then watch the episode of General Hospital I have saved on the DVR, and after The Daily Show/Colbert Report, head off to bed.

Tuesdays, I go into work at 9 and stay until 2:30. I have class at 3, then a two-hour break before lit skills at 6. He doesn't keep us the full two hours, which is nice, so I usually get home about 7:30 and can eat dinner then. I use the two hours between classes to prepare for lit skills, prep my witness, go over my testimony, whatever. Surf the internet, chat with friends, argue politics. Whatever. My mom stays with Cora on Tuesdays as well. I usually pick up dinner for both of us on my way home. This past summer I was really good about cooking, but lately I can't find the time or energy. I spend time with Cora before bedtime, get her ready for bed, and again, kick my mother out. Usually I have a little bit of energy to do some homework/whatever I need to get done. Husband usually doesn't work on Tuesdays, but he has a play date with the guys. I'll usually wait up for him.

Wednesdays, I work from 9 to 1, then go to my one class at 2. Husband takes Cora to daycare sometime in the morning, then spends the day doing, whatever. Studying for his classes, sleeping, laying on the couch scratching himself and the dog and playing Spore. After class, I'll usually go to the gym to do some running, and spend time on the elliptical watching DVDs. I recently bought Spaced on DVD, and watched the whole series. Love it!! If you enjoy British TV and geek stuff, you'll definitely enjoy Spaced, it's brilliant. Anyway, after the gym, I pick Cora up from daycare, we go home and figure out what to do for food. Homework and such ensue.

Thursdays I fortunately don't work. So I usually sleep in a little, and Husband will take Cora to daycare. If I have an activity on Thursday afternoon at the law school (when many things are planned because there are no classes at 4 on Thursdays), I'll go to the gym in the morning before class at 1. Otherwise, I'll go at 4:00, and pick up Cora afterwards. Husband has been working Thursdays, so he spends most of the day sleeping. I'll usually pick up dinner for us before he goes to work.

Fridays, I have this insane "intermediate" yoga class at 8:30. I go there, likely injure myself by toppling over during a difficult pose, then come home and shower. Husband bitches because he wanted me to take Cora to daycare on my way to the gym, but I didn't get up early enough to do that, so he has to go. He takes her to daycare, is usually still awake when I get back from the gym, has consumed at least two beers along with something fattening, is watching geek TV, and playing Spore. (And don't get me started on the cosmic unfairness that he is not overweight but I am.) I shower, go to school for my one class, and usually stick around at the law school to do some studying. Leave around 5:00 and go pick up Cora from daycare. Feel guilty that I'm the last person to pick up my kid at 5:30 on a Friday, because I imagine the people there would like to go home. But hey, they're open until 6, so whatever.

I also feel guilty that when I pick Cora up from daycare, she's usually having such a marvelous time that I don't want to take her home. The other day they had her in this bouncy seat, and she was literally squealing with delight as she jumped up and down in it. We don't have one of those. She was still happy to see me, but wasn't too happy when I put her in the car seat that most decidedly does not bounce. Oh well. The ladies at daycare love her, because she's snuggly. She loves being held and they certainly oblige her.

Sometimes Cora will start crying when she's left at daycare. Husband's the softy, sometimes he feels guilty about it. I don't. The kid cries when I leave the room at home. She gets over it. She's happy and safe and having a good time in daycare. She needs to learn to interact with other kids too. Our friends' daughter is the same age as Cora and in the same daycare, so they get lots of time together. Their kid is a bruiser though, and one of her favorite games is taking things away from Cora. They have to learn to deal with those things, it's better to work it out sooner rather than later. I was a pretty sensitive kid, I think being around other kids earlier than kindergarten would have helped. I see a lot of my own personality in Cora, so I'm hoping she'll benefit from being around other kids and working these things out over the next few years.

Daycare is good overall, although Husband is creeped out by the "children of the corn." One day when he dropped off Cora, all the kids were seated in a circle doing some activity with the teachers. When he walked in, all of them turned their heads to look at him, staring at him completely expressionless. He sat Cora down with them in the circle, he turns to leave, looks back, and all of them, including Cora are all still staring at him. One child in particular frightens him the most, this creepy red haired girl who's currently going through a biting stage. Yikes. I'm sure there isn't any sort of ritualistic satanic practices going on though. Although that would certainly be more interesting than Playdough.

Anyway, Husband has a Saturday morning class once a month, and I usually go to the gym at some point during the day. Sundays are my big study days. Weekends are mostly family time, although we go out with friends too. We don't normally get a sitter, because our friends are fine with us bringing Cora, and they like to see her too. We need to get better about keeping the house clean, especially since Cora is on the move. We definitely need to get better about eating out less and cooking at home more. I had been really good about getting salads if I have to get fast food, but this week has been total shit. I fell off the wagon -- hard. So back on the wagon, back to eating healthy. I haven't really lost any significant weight, but I feel better and my clothes are fitting better. I'm not ready for the half-marathon next month, but since I'm already registered, I will probably just walk it anyway. Surely I can walk 13 miles. Apparently I can't run 3.1 miles without injuring myself. Meh.

So, that's my life currently: busy. Some days it's really good, and I feel triumphant. Other days, I'm a complete mess, haven't done my reading, don't have a clue what's going on in BA, and feel like a complete idiot. But there were plenty of those days before I ever had a kid. It's funny, because people will be complaining about how busy they are and hold tired they feel, and then they'll be like, oh, but you're probably so much more tired. Eh, not really. I think you learn to adapt to whatever life throws at you, if you're the type of person who just keeps trudging along, that is. I was always just as tired and frazzled before, because I just filled the time with other stuff. More TV, more going out with friends, more activities, other responsibilities. I have yet to figure out if the reason my grades are mediocre is because I have so much going on, or if I have so much going on as a way to avoid really devoting all my energy to school. I think I fill the time to avoid having to devote my time to one thing. But is that because I get bored, or because I'm afraid if I devoted all my time to that one thing, that I wouldn't perform any better? Ah, introspection. Sweet diversion.

Oh, and cute pic of my kid:

So true

A friend of mine used this clip to express his feelings after the various Sarah Palin interview clips. I'm fairly certain the upcoming VP debates will warrant playing this clip again:

Saturday, September 27, 2008

On ice

I'm not sure exercise is for me. I don't consider myself to be a particularly clumsy person, but I seem to be having a great deal of difficulty regaining my footing should I stumble, and manage to completely wipe out.

I remember in high school, a friend of mine wanted to go ice skating. She was a big skater, mostly hockey, but she offered to teach me some figure skating. I told her that sounded dangerous, but she assured me that no one she'd taught had ever gotten hurt. Well, while attempting some basic spin, I caught one blade on the other and completely wiped out, landing onto my knee.

Aside from my recent craptastic treadmill experience, yesterday in yoga while doing the wheel pose, I managed a rather embarrassing topple sideways. (I have yet to attempt a hand stand, mostly because I'm convinced I will fall on my face.)

So, this morning was Race for the Cure. No, I didn't fall. But I did seem to put some strain on my right ankle, which I think is residual from yoga class yesterday. It's currently on ice. I'm thinking the half-marathon is not going be feasible, if I can't even run 3 miles without somehow injuring myself.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Foreign policy?

I'm highly disappointed that half of the debate was on the economy, not on foreign policy, greatly cutting the depth and substance of the foreign policy debate. I guess the economy's important too, whatever. Still disappointed. Bah.

Anyway, I think both candidates did well. Obama missed some opportunities to really knock it out of the park though. First, since we had to gab about the economy, he got hit by McCain about voting for a bunch of earmarks. What I wish he'd addressed is the fact that not every earmark is a bridge to nowhere. Some of those are really useful and important, like the earmark that created the national bone marrow registry. Second, McCain hit him on wanting to spend all sorts of money. What he should have addressed (before hitting McCain back about all his tax cuts for the rich) is that not all spending is wasteful. We've had excessive spending for wars, and yet desperately-needed social programs and education have been ignored.

A few points of irritation:

First, can we not pull a Reagan and make up historical stories? Eisenhower never wrote a resignation later to deliver in case the invasion of Normandy failed, that's a load of cow pucky. (And if McCain's argument is that anyone who makes a bad judgment call should resign, well, let's start with Senator Deregulation himself.) This is the letter he obviously means, which is taking responsibility for any failure. My bachelor's was in American history, and my concentration was 20th century military history. It irks me when members of our government screw up facts in history and use it as a basis for whatever muddled point they're trying to make. (Don't even get me started on Joe Biden's recent gaffe about how FDR was president in '29 and appeared on the Magic Box when the stock market crashed.)

Second, just because Sarah Palin says something stupid, doesn't mean you have to repeat it. Just because you constantly repeat something stupid, doesn't eventually make it true. So, when you repeat that Kissinger never said we should talk to Iran without preconditions, well... Yeah, he did. Both Kissinger and Obama support low-level talks that would progress first to cabinet level, then to heads of state. I think it's a little late to avoid giving legitimacy to the government of Iran. Like 29 years too late. My entire life. Talking to a lunatic does not give legitimacy to the lunatic and his positions. We have to figure out how to manage him. Military intervention is just not an option, and the sort of hard power McCain advocates for (hard-hitting sanctions) are just not going to happen. You aren't going to get Iran's trade partners on board for that one. 29 years we've been shunning them, and they haven't crumpled. Then we managed to take out Iraq, leaving them unchecked. Iran getting nukes is serious. Not because I think the second the bomb is complete, it gets launched toward Tel Aviv, but rather, because it will end up being an arms race in the Middle East. Bad stuff.

But the point Obama didn't hit home is that we don't have the troops to fight anymore wars, or make anymore surges. We don't have the troops for a surge in Afghanistan, and won't until next year at the earliest. We have no choice but to use diplomacy as our strongest tool in international relations. And finally, I think the worst thing Obama was hit with was not supporting the surge, which "worked." Well... it's a little more complicated than that. There were other factors involved, including talks with Sunni nationalist insurgents, and as Stratfor suggests, back-channel U.S.-Iranian talks. Maybe both Senators know more than they're saying, maybe not, but it's pretty apparent that saying "oh, the surge worked!" is not an accurate picture of events in Iraq.

In conclusion, I think both parties expressed their positions as well as possible. I think it comes down to whose view of the world is more realistic, and whose methods are going to be more effective. I believe Obama will have better success in energizing our allies, as well as engaging our enemies in serious talks. I also believe an Obama administration will be proactive in addressing global issues, rather than merely reactive. He's right about the situation in Georgia. That should have been diffused awhile ago. Ignoring the rest of the world until shit starts blowing up? Not a good policy.

Analysis

Now that I'm over my initial irritation over the ridiculous entitlement-riddled excuse Palin gives for why she never made it out of the country until this year, on to actual substance.

Here's a portion of the interview:

Couric: You met yesterday with former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who is for direct diplomacy with both Iran and Syria. Do you believe the U.S. should negotiate with leaders like President Assad and Ahmadinejad?

Palin: I think, with Ahmadinejad, personally, he is not one to negotiate with. You can't just sit down with him with no preconditions being met. Barack Obama is so off-base in his proclamation that he would meet with some of these leaders around our world who would seek to destroy America and that, and without preconditions being met. That's beyond naïve. And it's beyond bad judgment.

Couric: Are you saying Henry Kissinger …

Palin: It's dangerous.

Couric: … is naïve for supporting that?

Palin: I've never heard Henry Kissinger say, "Yeah, I'll meet with these leaders without preconditions being met." Diplomacy is about doing a lot of background work first and shoring up allies and positions and figuring out what sanctions perhaps could be implemented if things weren't gonna go right. That's part of diplomacy.


First problem: You just sat down with Henry Kissinger, a foreign policy icon, and you didn't manage to pick up on his position that we need to engage in talks with our enemies, without preconditions? Were you just not paying attention? Or are you just that clueless?

Second problem: Yours/McCain's position on this in the first place. Let me set something straight, that the Neoconservative contingency of the Republican party seems to be real confused about: Diplomacy is not compromise. Diplomacy is not appeasement. Diplomacy isn't necessarily even negotiation. Diplomacy is about communication. It has an entire spectrum of uses, and one of those is, quite simply, just learning about the other player.

America is a pretty open book. It's easy to get here, we are quite transparent with our exuberance for media attention. Our leaders regularly talk to the press, and regularly answer to the people (well, for the most part). That information is all available to nations such as Iran. Iran, however, is not so transparent. It is more difficult to truly evaluate the motives and actions of other nations and the people who lead those nations, when you don't have communication with them. We need to talk to Iran, not because we expect that Ahmadinejad is going to suddenly see the error of his crazy, racist ways, and suddenly embrace Israel, but because we need to more accurately assess what comes out of Tehran, including his crazy, racist blathering. Sitting down and talking with him is a good way to do that. I'm not saying Bush should have been inviting his good buddy Ahmadi out to the ranch, but sitting down with the man and figuring out what makes him tick would have been incredibly useful. (So are embassies packed full of spooks posing as State employees, but that's beside the point.) Anyway, Ahmadinejad doesn't give enough of a crap about America that just talking to us is enough of a carrot to, I dunno, suspend their nuclear program. But talking is important, nonetheless.

Anyway, next segment:

Couric: You recently said three times that you would never, quote, "second guess" Israel if that country decided to attack Iran. Why not?

Palin: We shouldn't second guess Israel's security efforts because we cannot ever afford to send a message that we would allow a second Holocaust, for one. Israel has got to have the opportunity and the ability to protect itself. They are our closest ally in the Mideast. We need them. They need us. And we shouldn't second guess their efforts.

Couric: You don't think the United States is within its rights to express its position to Israel? And if that means second-guessing or discussing an option?

Palin: No, abso … we need to express our rights and our concerns and …

Couric: But you said never second guess them.

Palin: We don't have to second-guess what their efforts would be if they believe … that it is in their country and their allies, including us, all of our best interests to fight against a regime, especially Iran, who would seek to wipe them off the face of the earth. It is obvious to me who the good guys are in this one and who the bad guys are. The bad guys are the ones who say Israel is a stinking corpse and should be wiped off the face of the earth. That's not a good guy who is saying that. Now, one who would seek to protect the good guys in this, the leaders of Israel and her friends, her allies, including the United States, in my world, those are the good guys.


Way to go, SP. You just took a position that even Bush wouldn't take. Whoops.

Also, not second-guess the Israelis? Since when are they masters of strategy? They haven't exactly proven that they make the best decisions. [i.e. The recent Israel-Lebanon conflict] It was a bad move strategically. It certainly upset the Lebanese who were either pro-Israel, or at the very least neutral. Also, just by surviving the conflict, it was a victory for Hezbollah. Not a great move, really.

I don't think being pro-Israel means that you give them free reign to start blowing shit up, (and supply them with the weapons to do it.) Granted, Israel hasn't survived this long in hostile territory by playing nice. But still, let's not encourage them to blow up the Middle East. I'd like to visit there someday. I'd like it to not be glass.

Anyway, counting down the minutes until tonight's debate. Yay!!!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Irritation

Quote from Palin's interview that aired this evening, which completely pissed me off:

[Explaining why she just recently obtained a passport:] "I'm not one of those who came from a background of, you know, kids who perhaps graduate college and their parents give them a passport and give them a backpack and say go off and travel the world. No, I've worked all my life. In fact, I usually had two jobs all my life until I had kids. I was not a part of, I guess, that culture."

Yeah... so? I've worked full time since I was 17. I worked my way through college, through grad school, through law school. And I've managed multiple trips out of the country. If it was something she'd wanted to do, she could have done it. Don't blame your lack of international travel on the fact that your parents didn't pay for it. It's that same sort of back-handed comment that comes from people who use the "well, my parents couldn't pay for college" excuse why they never got an education. As though no one else had to put themselves through college.

If you never had enough interest in doing something, that you weren't willing to scrimp and save and find a way to do it, then just admit that it wasn't a priority. If she'd answered, "Gosh, I just never had a real desire to go to another country, there were other things I wanted to do instead," then that would be a good, honest answer. Blaming the fact that you weren't born with a silver spoon in your mouth and had to pay for shit yourself like the majority of Americans, plenty of whom travel abroad, well, that's just ridiculous.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Day of FAIL

We have definite FAIL going on today. I'm seriously considering skipping class, it's been that good of a day.

We wake up this morning, like any other morning, to the sound of Cora crying for a bottle. She generally wakes up about 7:30, plays in her crib, then when she starts getting hungry, cries for us to get her a bottle (usually about 8). We give her the bottle, change her diaper, change her clothes and then playtime with her toys.

Well... this morning we found there had been massive diaper FAIL, and Cora had made herself, and her entire crib, into a work of art. The medium? Poop.

Sigh. Remind me to buy her some watercolors instead.

I should have taken a picture, it was certainly impressive. Anyway, while Husband hosed her down and gave her a good scrubbing, I cleaned up the crib and threw everything in the wash. Then coming up the stairs, I cracked my knuckle on the doorframe. It's now slightly purple. I then decided to go back to sleep for a little while, skipped showering and whore-bathed instead.

Oh well. Even if my kid is covered in her own feces, still doing better than this parenting FAIL:


Part 2

For an analysis of Obama's foreign policy stance, read here.

I assume McCain's will be tomorrow's edition.

Some actual substance

In preparation of the first presidential debate on Friday, I encourage everyone to read this and learn something about the geopolitical landscape and what challenges face the next US President. Stratfor is a nonpartisan publisher of geopolitical intelligence. This post is the first of a four-part series.

I am hopeful that the questions posed to the candidates on Friday will be pertinent to the real challenges that we face in the world and that the responses given by the candidates will be substantive, not merely full of platitudes.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bailouts

I'm struggling this semester in BA. The actual "business" part I get, and I know a minimal amount about global economics, but our class keeps going back to accounting and finance, which are two concepts that elude me completely. I'm trying to improve myself, though, and not be a complete moron when it comes to all that financial stuff.

However, until the day I am no longer a moron, I will continue to defer to those who actually know something about finance. Like the folks on this blog. I might not know much about the industry, but what I do know is that I agree with this idea about conditions for the bailout.

Politicking -- health care

I don't have the energy or the coherency at this point in the evening (or morning, I suppose) to actually do much extensive political analysis, so I'm just going to link to this NYT op-ed, as well as commentary on the topic from Dave, cancer survivor and musician.

I'm actually not a big fan of Obama's health care proposals, it just isn't liberal enough. I think we need a radical overhaul of the system and implementation of universal coverage. But it's certainly more thought-out than McCain's proposals, and aimed at helping the American people, not padding the pockets of the insurance companies even more. (Let's deregulate them even more and wait until they implode so we can issue a massive bailout for them too! Hurray for free markets that get safety nets while the American people don't!)

Right now we have a health care system in place that only protects the rich who can afford health care (as well as full health insurance coverage) and the poorest of the poor who get free government coverage. It's a system that encourages people to quit their jobs, lose everything they worked for, and go on government assistance if they contract a serious, persistent illness, because they have no other way of paying the medical bills. It's a system that breeds despair, poverty, and not to mention fraud (and our state is riddled with Medicaid/government assistance fraud... I have endless amounts of horror stories I unfortunately can't share because of confidentiality issues. But it's all very maddening.)

I just can't even imagine voting for John McCain. At a time when Bush's approval rating is lower than Nixon's at the time of his resignation, it's time to give the GOP a big kick in the ass. And maybe the Democrats won't do any better, but it's certainly worth a try. Eight years of failure, we need something better. John McCain sure as hell isn't it.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Swift Boats, Part Deux

The "friends" of the GOP strike again. Why actually debate the issues, when you can just participate in a willful campaign of misinformation? (And by that I mean outright lying.)

Jerome Corsi, writing "Obama Nation" has once again sacrificed any sort of academic integrity he might have once had on the altar of political smear. Although I suspect it probably wasn't much.

Here's what Factcheck.org (a non-partisan political site) has to say:

Mary Matalin, the chief editor of the book's publisher, told the New York Times that the book is not political, but rather, "a piece of scholarship, and a good one at that." The prominent display of Corsi's academic title (he holds a Ph.D. in political science) seems clearly calculated to convey academic rigor. But as a scholarly work, "The Obama Nation" does not measure up. We judge it to be what a hack journalist might call a "paste-up job," gluing together snippets from here and there without much regard for their truthfulness or accuracy.

Corsi promises in his preface "to fully document all arguments and contentions I make, extensively footnoting all references, so readers can determine for themselves the truth and validity of the factual claims." Some of Corsi's claims do come complete with citations. But even a casual glance at Corsi's lengthy endnotes reveals that his "sources" include obscure Internet postings (which are themselves completely unsourced) and opinion columns from various conservative publications. In fact, on four occasions, Corsi cites himself as a source. Where Corsi does cite news sources, he sometimes presents only those that are consistent with his case while ignoring evidence that doesn't fit the picture he paints.

A
comprehensive review of all the false claims in Corsi's book would itself be a book. Our review touches only on a few of the more blatant examples.


I'm a big fan of Factcheck.org. I like to know if the things our politicians say are true, and sometimes it's difficult to actually discover the truth. And especially at this point when accusations are flying at the speed of light, it's hard to keep up!

I just wish we could get back to the issues. Tax cuts, health care, economy, foreign policy!!!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Eggs

I decided not to try out for our school's trial team. The deadline was Friday, and I let it pass. I ultimately decided this for a few reasons. First, I'm doing way too much already, and I'm already getting my ass kicked in BA. I might only have two finals this semester, but I may fail one of them, ugh. Second, I'm working with two of my classmates and a professor to create an International Moot Court team. I'd much rather put my eggs into that basket. While I actually prefer the trial work to appellate work, I think the moot court team will be better experience, and will be a much-needed "I actually do stuff with International Law!" blip on my resume to go with all that insurance defense/whiplash law. (Is there international whiplash law? Yeah, didn't think so.)

Third, I don't think I'd even make the team. Not because I don't believe in my abilities, I think I could be a real competitor. But there are people who have already taken lit skills with the professor who leads the team, knows what she likes, knows what she doesn't, and so it just seems rather pointless. Perhaps I'm selling myself short, or expressing too much faith in my classmates, but I realize I'm also avoiding further disappointment at this stage. I'm getting enough blows to my ego in my futile efforts to find future employment.

Anyway, so my eggs are going in the moot court basket. I still don't feel any regret not actually trying to be on the moot court board, but I'm glad I'll get to actually be on a team. The two guys I'm working with should be good. One is at the top of our class, the other is a moot court guy whose strength is oral argument. My strengths are in international law and research, so we should make a good team. I think it will be a lot of fun.

Speaking of international law, I ended up president of ILS again, because no one else wanted the job. Sigh. So I'm trying to do my best to energize the other members. Two of the new officers are also joint degree students from the IR grad program, and also very passionate about getting the organization up and going. I think it will be a good year. I'd like to go out with a bang (and with the bank account in the black). I am a fiscally conservative president, afterall.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Experience not necessary, knowledge is a must

After watching the Charles Gibson interview with Sarah Palin, I have a terrible headache.

We've had eight years of an administration led by a man who scorns knowledge. Bush launched an illegitimate war based on fabricated intelligence with a country he didn't even bother to familiarize himself with first. (Sunni? Shi'ite? Yeah, whatever... Flowers and candy!) Nearly six years ago, he created a foreign policy of not preemptive war but preventive war by invading Iraq, as the supposed threat posed by Iraq was neither immediate nor even in the foreseeable future. The very important question for the next administration is: Will the Bush Doctrine continue? Will we continue to deal with our enemies with a preventive policy, or will we engage them, relying on diplomacy?

A real good place to start for our nominee for Vice-President (and potential President of the United States) is knowing exactly what our current foreign policy is! Hint: The Bush Doctrine is not defined as "Bush's world view." It's a policy of preventive war. (Someone at least get her on Wikipedia for Christ's sake.) And even after Gibson defines it for her, she still doesn't get it, she starts talking about imminent threats. That's not the Bush Doctrine. Bush Doctrine = Preventive war. Granted, Gibson does misspeak. He uses the word preemptive, rather than preventive, but he does properly explain the Bush Doctrine to her. But if you can't grasp the basic concepts of foreign policy, please step away from the nuke button.

Most of the interview is bad. The fact that Palin would have us fighting a war with Russia right now if Georgia were a member of NATO, it's downright frightening. As Madeleine Albright once said, "Armageddon is not a foreign policy." Well, not yet, anyway.

The scary interview:


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Blog? What blog?

I know, I'm the world's shittiest blogger. Here I'm supposed to be blogging about my experiences as (now a mom) and being a law student, and all you get here are crickets and tumbleweeds.

Anyway, I promise I will post more in the future. Getting back into the groove of school and also working the maximum number of hours allowed by the honor code has been tough, especially since Business Associations is already kicking my ass, and we're only on the third week. Four credit hour class? Geez, it should be six or seven with the amount of reading we're doing. The rest of my classes are going well, just busy. I'm also working with ILS again this year, and trying to organize an International Moot Court team. Yes, I'm insane.

I guess I should probably change the name of my blog too, since I'm not knocked up anymore. Meh, when I think of something, I'll let you know.

I also failed to complete my politicking. I have a ton to say, but I don't have the time to write it all down. I'll just say this: I am incredibly disappointed in McCain for his VP choice. To choose a woman who is so completely unqualified to hold any public office, let alone the most important one, as a [very real] possibility for our first woman president fills me with such dismay, I can't even describe it. If he really wanted to choose a woman, there were several better choices within the Republican party, who have the knowledge and skills to be effective leaders. Even if I wouldn't agree with their policies, I can at least respect them. Also the fact that Sarah Palin is so incredibly anti-feminist pours salt on the wounds. All of the tidbits of information coming out about her, her extreme conservatism, her racist comments, her refusal to listen to anyone's ideas other than her own and that of her close advisors, her lavish spending while mayor which left her town with a large amount of debt and nothing substantive to show for it, I think the one that struck me the most is this story. It's the one thing that really makes me question her judgment and her priorities. There is talk about her limited executive experience, but I don't believe that's the problem at all. The fact is, she has executive experience, and her record is clear: she has her own agenda, and that agenda is not the betterment of the people she is supposed to lead. We've had eight years of misguided priorities, eight years of the administration ignoring the problems faced by average Americans, we don't need anymore of that.

Normally, I don't think the VP candidate should make that much of a difference in supporting the candidate for president. I mean, I still voted for Al Gore, even though Lieberman was on the ticket. (Don't even get me started with Lieberman, that man's been on my shit list for years.) But the idea that McCain, with his advanced age and his various health conditions, could croak and leave us with Palin as president... that makes me rather sick to my stomach. McCain I can tolerate, even though he's made many statements throughout his campaign, especially regarding foreign policy, that makes me groan from the stupidity of it all. But now I respect McCain a lot less, because it's clear he chose Palin not because she was the most qualified candidate, or a good balance to his ticket, but merely as a gimmick. (Catch a few conservative pundits on an open mic, and you'll find it to be the prevailing opinion.)

So there you have it. School, politics, what else? Oh wait, baby!

Gratuitous pics of my kid, who is now 9 months old and starting to crawl. Trouble.



Sunday, September 7, 2008

New law baby

Congrats to Cee.

That is all.