Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Solution I can live with

I agree that something needs to be done about this situation but I absolutely do not believe that handing over $700 Billion and giving one man absolute power over the situation is the right solution.

So, it has come to my attention that Dave Ramsey has put together a "Common Sense Fix" to the problem. You can find it on his website: www.daveramsey.com.

I have already written a letter, including the fix, and faxed to to both Texas Senators and my congresswoman, Sheila Jackson Lee.

I do not and I cannot support a $700 Billion bail out. I'm curious why they want us to believe that throwing money into the pot is the only solution to the problem. It's the equivalent of giving an addict a fix just so they can get by to the next withdrawal.


Making sense of this mess

I have posted this before but it seems more relevant. To understand how these Mortgage Back Securities came about and the bundling etc. "This American Life" did a fabulous piece titled, The Giant Pool of Money It's free to listen to.

And additionally, this is not free but it's available as a live download on Netflix it's called Maxed Out.

Monday, September 29, 2008

I'm just so pissed - NO BAIL OUT


This is what I'm hearing, especially from Suze Orman, regarding this bail out. It seems that we need to pass this bail out so that we can all continue to live beyond our means.

We use credit to buy anything we desire and the credit card companies say "yes", do this. This culture has been encouraged to use credit like it's a personal bank account.

No No No!!! We are here because this has been the way we have been encouraged to live. We have been encouraged to live this way by the very credit institutions that are now in trouble.

This is the natural, logical conclusion of allowing ourselves to continue to accumulate debt. The talking heads are encouraging Americans to support this bail out so that we can continue the same poor credit practices that got us here.


I like what Ron Paul has to say about it.

Not so sure Paulson is correct

The premise that Paulson is using to justify the government's purchase of these Mortgage Securities is that home values will go up because money is being made available. I am assuming then that he believes that it will raise the value of the securities being purchased by the government.

The problem I see with that argument is that the housing prices we saw from 2003-2007 was a combination of a couple of things.

1) It was so easy for buyers to be approved for loans so people were offering more for homes than list price. For example, a home might be listed for $250K and a consumer might then offer $300k for the house. Why? Because the seller would then give the buyer $50k at the closing table. It was a round about way of allowing buyers to borrow more money at mortgage rate interest rates. Often times it was meant to help investors pay their mortgage while they waited for a tenant to occupy their property. In order for that to work, the appraisers had to be willing to appraise the property higher than "market" value which was already inflated. The lender gets their 1 - 2% commission, the realtors get their commission, and the appraiser gets his pocket padded.

2) There were so many people being qualified for loans that the housing inventory was not meeting the demand. With so many people chasing houses, we were faced with a seller's market. Sellers could expect higher prices for their homes because buyers were being qualified for them. Sellers did very well during these years.

These lax policies for lending money is why we are seeing the foreclosures we see. The strict policies that lenders traditionally required when offering loans were there for a reason.

So, I don't believe this bailout is going to change home prices as much as he is predicting because so much of the housing prices were fundamentally influenced by one thing: The ease by which a person with a pulse could get a loan.

It is my opinion that in order for home prices to go up from here, creditors would have to continue to look the other way when borrowers don't have what it takes to qualify for loans. And that will continue to deteriorate the mess we are already in.

If we go back to the rules that banks have followed before this mess, then it will be more difficult for fraud to take place, which results in fewer qualified buyers. Such a scenario creates a buyer's market. A buyer's market brings down home prices.

Capable but different

At the end of the debates Friday night, I walked away thinking that both men would serve well as Presidents. But I think that Obama is the better choice.

It's funny because at some point during the debates, and it may have been at the very beginning, I halfway expected Obama to say: "Hi, I'm a Mac" and McCain to say: "And I'm a PC".

Because to me that is almost where we are today. The PC represents an older, rigid, inflexible approach to computers whereas the Mac is about compatibility, reliability, and a solution to our collection of music, photos and videos. In other words, Mac understands the user's needs and is more capable to accommodate them than the PC.

And now they are both about the same price. I can buy a basic laptop from Mac for about the same price as one from Dell. I won't be buying laptops any time soon, though.

If Obama wins, I am really excited about the changes to come. I think he is going to be the breath of fresh air Washington has needed since Kennedy was assassinated. I think America was truly heartbroken to lose her President in such a horrible way but I also think America loved him and his family. I think the White House can be Camelot once again. And I think that Obama can do it.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Bail Out, Schmail Out

It is not our government's place to bail out these financial institutions. And I am a firm believer that the only reason that Bush and Co. want to do it is because they don't want Americans to feel the full impact of this situatuon while the current administration is in office. This could actually seal the deal for the Democrats.

If these guys ok the bail out and then the new administration takes over, the failure of the bail out will be blamed on the new administration. Especially if Obama wins the election, they will point to his lack of experience.

But the problem goes deeper. When the government gets involved and does these bail outs they enable problems like this to develop in the first place. If the executives know that they can be bailed out if they screw things up then there is no risk of failure. And if there is no risk of failure, then there is no motivation to make the right decisions. There are consequences to poor decisions and when we face those consequences and accept the responsibility for them, then we grow and get better at making decisions.

I am of the opinion that Congress has been looking the other way regarding this country's debt issues because these bad policies made it look like we had a strong economy. People were buying houses, cars, appliances, etc. that they couldn't afford and the credit card companies were encouraging them to do it. So, the illusion of a strong economy is one less issue to deal with. The gamble this administration took was that they were hoping that it would crash next year, after they had exited.

There is an interview by Sara Palin with Katie Curic where Sara indicates that the government must act and do something. When Katie asked about helping the homeowners being foreclosed on, Sara said that she didn't believe that "people should be rewarded for bad decisions." So I guess financial institutions aren't people to Sara Palin.

I'm still wondering exactly what did Bush mean when he said this would be an era of accountability?

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Good Bye to a good man.

I logged onto CNN.com this morning to see what breaking news there was about the debates last night.

I was not expecting the headline announcing Paul Newman's passing away. I was very saddened by it.

I remember growing up my parents bemoaning the passing of some old actor or actress I'd never heard of. It meant so little to me and I couldn't understand why they cared about someone they didn't even know.

I didn't know Paul Newman personally. And I don't think I can even go so far to say I knew him just because I saw almost all of his movies. But his movies take me back to the various times in my life. And the passing of these personalities whose works somehow affected my life over time simply remind me that I, too, am getting older.

Good bye Paul. Thank you for the wonderful movies, for the wonderful spaghetti sauces and for the tasty salad dressings. You will be missed.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

McCain and another knee jerk decision.

Ok, so this is an interesting move on McCain's part.

He needs two things right now.

The first is time away from this existing crisis. Since polls are showing that the American citizens see the current financial ills as the Republican's doing, now probably would not be a good time to have a Presidential debate. That is, if you are a Republican.

The second thing McCain needs is some ammunition. He needs to get something on Obama and what better way to do that than to lure Obama into this mess in D.C. This gives McCain the opportunity to watch what Obama does and says. Thus providing him and his staff fodder that can be spun and injected in new negative campaign ads as well as material for debates.

When McCain made this decision to go to Washington and ask Obama to do the same, he placed himself in a precarious position. First off, Obama decided he wasn't going to play. He wants to move forward with the debates. Now that puts McCain in the undesirable position of either A) calling off the debates and looking like a coward or B) eating crow and being forced to debate. He didn't want to have to make either decision.

So, he does the next best thing. He makes it someone else's decision to call off the debates and tells the President to make Obama come to D.C.

Obama was right when he said that Presidential politics have no place being injected into this current situation. And that is EXACTLY what McCain is doing.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Recent events and Real Estate

I've been trying to make heads or tails out of recent events and how they may affect real estate in Houston.

I had been optimistic that the recent hurricane would drive up housing demand in Houston. So many misplaced residents will need housing and once FEMA and various home owners insurance payments are made, people will feel ready to move forward. Some will want to stay near the water, others will decide not to risk another storm. At any rate, I've anticipated an increase in demand for housing near Houston.

Baton Rouge couldn't hold on to their inventory shortly after Katrina hit. Bidding wars were commonplace.

Now, we have this new turn of events with our Financial industry. I see two ways this is going to impact the market.

The first impact is consumer confidence. These are complicated issues and a lot of people don't understand them; that usually leads to fear. Fear paralyzes most people which forces them to hold on tight to their money.

The second impact: ultra-conservative underwriters. I believe this is going to be what ultimately determines home values. I'm seeing it right now with a condo I have available for sale. There were actually two available in the community. Both are nicely priced for the area and both had offers. Even though both condos had offers by well-informed buyers within just days of being listed, the underwriter would not accept the appraisers proposed values. They didn't like the formula he used and forced him to under value the condo. My client wouldn't play, so we lost the contract and the condo is back on the market. I think she's going to sit tight and lease it out. Condos are very tricky animals; only under certain circumstances do I consider them to be good investments.

Ok, so is it a buyer's market or a seller's market? Jury is still out. I do believe that right now, it's a good time to buy. Sellers are worried so they will probably be far more willing to negotiate.

We don't have enough rental property to meet Houston's demand for rental housing. This is and excellent time to be a property investor. Excellent.

I predict that within about 3 - 4 weeks, we'll see an increase in home sales that can be linked to Ike. How strong this impact is going to be will be directly affected by how accessible loans will be after the bail out. I'm most interested in how underwriters are going to impact home prices. Will they allow the market to determine home values?

Monday, September 22, 2008

A surprise? I don't think so.

Everyone in D.C. would like to say that they were taken by surprise by the depth of our financial collapse; I beg to differ.

Here is a link to a report that was put together by the FBI in May of 2007. It is the 2006 Mortgage Fraud Report.

Here's one in 2005. Feds Warn Against Mortgage Lenders

They saw this coming.

What did these financial institutions do to prevent themselves from getting to this point once they received the warning signs?

Friday, September 19, 2008

How did we get here?

I hear that question a lot these days in reference to the financial institutions' collapse.

I have a theory.

Does anyone remember when Bush campaigned back in 2000 how he said that this would be an era of accountability. People would be held accountable, he said.

The National Bank of America drafted a bill that made it more difficult for consumers to filed for bankruptcy. I agree that people should have to pay their debts and not over spend but unfortunately it isn't as simple as that.

Consider this analogy. Is it wrong for someone to steal shoes off of my porch? Yes, it is. Who's accountable? Both parties. If I keep leaving my shoes on the porch and they keep being stolen, then maybe I should stop leaving them on the porch.

So this new bill by congress was the equivalent of the cops cracking down harder on those who steal shoes from the porch.

The banks of America thought that if the consumer couldn't file for bankruptcy then there was no reason for them to stop cramming credit down the consumer's throat. Whether it's a subprime mortgage with adjustable rates or outlandish credit terms or a credit card with fees on top of fees and outlandish interest rates, the financial instutes of America thought they were safe. They thought they could continue to leave their shoes on the porch and that the penalties for stealing would be enough to stop the culprits.

So, Bush's interpretation of accountability was very limited. Or perhaps it was exact. People would be held accountable but the institutions that made really bad policies would not be.

Congress wonders where they went wrong. How about this message: "Hey guys, if you keep putting your shoes on the porch, and they continue to get stolen, we're not going to buy you new shoes".

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Getting back to normal

Well, things are certainly getting back to normal around here. Unfortunately, my part of Houston is not supposed to have power until after Monday. I'm so glad I do have it.

Last night, at 1:00 a.m., I heard a train. I love trains and I missed hearing them come through. The cars going up and down Studewood are pretty regular now. People are out and about driving and riding bikes. Life is happening.

I had internet trouble all day until just about 30 minutes ago; and I'm still having some problems with my cell but I think it's coming to an end and I can receive calls as I should.

I'm bored. So is my friend, John. I hooked up and met with him at Onion Creek for a beer this afternoon. He had his laptop and was writing up an article for Spec's. He types with one finger. It's quite amusing to watch him. That isn't one finger from each hand, either. It's ONE finger.

He's been writing for a long time. He was a journalist before he became a food writer. He's written plays, musicals, cookbooks and books about food. This is his latest book. He had been working on it all year.

So, anyway, I'm ready to get back to work. I've enjoyed my break very much and am thankful for the time off.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Titanic and America's financial institutions

Ok, so you're sitting there asking yourself, what do these things possibly have in common.

Why did the Titanic sink?

Most people would say, because it hit an ice berg. But why did it hit an ice berg? Because the captain of the boat wanted to arrive in New York early to surprise everyone, so he was speeding across the Atlantic. Why would the captain take such a risk? The speed at which they were traveling made virtually impossible to avoid a berg once one was spotted.

The captain took the risks he took because he was operating on a specific premise. Structurally, the Titanic was unsinkable.

Think about what that means for a moment. If they truly believed it was impossible to sink the Titanic then why should anyone consider safety features. Was it really necessary to have enough lifeboats, or any lifeboats for that matter? If they hadn't held the premise that the Titanic was unsinkable, would it have sunk?

The same principle applies to the financial industry. They knew that they couldn't sink and that the government would rescue them. Therefore, they didn't need to be responsible about their decisions and whatever policies they held in place to ensure the credibility of their lending or investment decisions went out the window. Why take such precautions when failure was really impossible?

Well, the Titanic is sinking and it's taking all of us with it.

Thanks GW, we really appreciate watching our 401K's and IRA's become smaller and smaller every day.

Just Stuff

I decided to walk over to 11th street cafe and get breakfast. Unfortunately they didn't have bacon. I really wanted bacon. It was nice getting out and seeing people. I can't believe I showed up without business cards.

My phone service is sporadic. The only thing that works well is texting. T-Mobile is going to make a mint off of us.

I'm a little bored. I've been working on a needlepoint project for the last 3 days. I love stitching but I'm ready for a break. My friend, John, is frustrated that he doesn't have power.

I remember when Alecia hit us in '83. It was August. My family lived in Kingwood and we were without electricity for a week. My grandparents were visiting at the time; they regretted the timing of their visit. I remember how stifling the heat and humidity was. I slept with my windows open and a wet towel draped over me. I recall that I actually got relief by doing that. I also remember that people were price gouging ice and my father was livid about it. I don't remember anything else. I don't remember how we prepared for it, or what we ate during the days after.

Admittedly, I wasn't as prepared as I should have been for this storm. Had I lost power like my friends, I don't know that I would have had enough food to sustain me. Water and batteries were plentiful. I completely forgot, though, that I don't have a radio.

When Rita hit, I was completely prepared. I guess the false alarm of that storm had something to do with how I prepared for this one. I don't know when news people are being sincere and when they are sensationalizing.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

My date with Ike

Well, I made it.

I opted to rough it out at home. I live in the Heights, called such because it is on higher ground than most of Houston. I believe we are 20' higher than downtown Houston. I'm on the ground floor of a duplex and my building is up another 2-3' above ground. So, I wasn't as worried about flooding as members of my family who did not live in Houston.

The national news did a really bad job reporting this. They are too lazy to understand Houston. They don't get that Houston is 600 sq miles. We are not a densely populated city. We grow by gobbling up neighboring communities and expanding our city limits. So when CNN and others were talking about storm surges and flooding in Houston, they made it sound like all of Houston was in danger. They were evacuating only certain zip codes in Houston. My zip code was not one of those. So my sister and my brother were both very worried about me. I would be, too, if the role was reversed.

This building is solid. I felt it shake just a little bit during the highest intensity. I did not board up any windows. And interestingly, neither did the restaurant, The Glass Wall. I was surprised. But they didn't get any broken windows and neither did I. I had to leave my car outside. It didn't get any damage, either.

My electricity went out at 2:45 a.m. I'm impressed that my satellite never went out. I was able to watch the news up to the moment I lost power and the winds had picked up quite a bit at that point. I thought the eye was going to go over me which told me I would have gotten a break from the winds and would have been able to sleep. But unfortunately, it didn't start to slow down until about 7:00. They were still strong winds but I knew the worst was over and could sleep.

I would say that the most difficult part of this was the sinus headache I got when it started. I think it had to do with the pressure. For 24 hours I was popping everything I could get my hands on for relief. It wasn't until this morning, when the rain hit, that my headache went away.

My power came back on yesterday at about 7:00. So, I was one of the very lucky ones to have power so quickly. As a matter of fact no one across the street from me had any power. I'm curious if they will have power this evening.

My friend, John, is still without power. But he does have a gas stove and he's motivated to cook his food before it goes bad. Everyone should have a friend like John in their life. He isn't just a guy who can cook, he's a guy who can really cook well. He hangs out with chefs, writes cookbooks and reviews restaurants. So, when he whips something up, it's like eating out. YUMMY. So, I let him use my couch last night so he could sleep with some air conditioning.

The rain this morning managed to flood some of the streets and he was stuck here for several hours this morning. He finally made it home. He just called. He has stuff he needs to cook from his freezer. Wants to know if he can come over and cook here. Looks like I'm going to be eating quite well this evening.

Everyone in my family has been accounted for. I can't receive or place any phone calls from my cell phone but I have a fax line and a crappy phone I can plug into it. I've been able to place calls and check voice mail going that route.

But here is the really really good part of this. Whenever I take a vacation, it's really hard because my clients aren't on vacation. Just because it's my time off doesn't mean real estate stops. But right now, no one is thinking real estate. So my phone isn't ringing and the roads are a mess. So, this really is a true break for me. I've been organizing my office, listening to music and I watched a movie. Ahh, I do like this break.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

I guess it's official

I am officially on the Obama Bandwagon. I know the pundits are telling us this is a close race. For some reason, I find this hard to believe. I never trust the press. I know that they like Obama a lot but I'm not sure that the owners of the press like Obama.

Will the enthusiasm for Obama in Texas make much impact. We bleed a lot of red here. I don't know how dogmatic we are really. Austin is pretty big and they are free thinkers. I'm pretty amazed at how open people are in Houston towards Obama. But I don't know about Dallas. I'm sure they are pretty hard core Republicans.

Texas is an uphill battle but I plan on voting my little heart out. And just for true measure, straight ticket.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Thoughts on McCain

I listened to McCain's speech last night. I have to agree he's a good man and I can't help but wonder how different our world would be today if he had been elected into office instead of Bush. The smear tactics that the Bush campaign did to McCain in 2000 really and truly were nasty but in hindsight, it was par to the course.

McCain milked the POW. It sort of made me think of the Passion of Christ. Religious organizations like to emphasize the sacrifice Christ made in order to lure unbelievers into the realm. First it's used as a proof of love, then it's used as guilt if you decide to stray. I felt guilt while listening to McCain's story.

I'm not going to elect a man President because I feel sorry for something that happened to him. There is a temptation because I want to say, he deserves to be President. But that isn't what this is about. Electing someone President because one feels like it's his turn is treating the role of Presidency as a privilege instead of a job.

When I watched the speeches at the DNC, I believe the cheering and the adoration towards Obama and Clinton were sincere. The audience response at the RNC felt really staged. I saw similarities to the DNC. For example, they shouted "USA" in place of the DNC's "Yes We Can".

And finally, though I can see that McCain and company has completely changed their tone about a lot of things, I know that people can't change on a dime. The change that Obama represents is change that he's been promoting for 18 months. He's even demonstrated it in the way he's accepted money for his campaign. McCain is talking change only because now he sees that it's needed. But before the DNC, he didn't see it and he addressed Obama's success leading up to that with really negative ads.

I don't know what "change" McCain is going to bring. What specifically does he think needs to be done? I heard Cindy McCain say that it was time for the Government to "get out of the way" but Obama already said that. How does McCain propose the government getting out of the way, exactly?

McCain wants to win this election. But that's about it. I don't think that change is really in his heart.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

I choose Excellence

I caught Giuliani's speech this evening. I absolutely love Giuliani. I get that he's not Presidential material but he has a very special place in my heart. This evening, though, I didn't like him that much. He came across sort of trite, maybe? I can't find the word, but he fell short. He hasn't lost that special place, though; I still love him.

Sarah delivered her speech and I listened. During her speech, I could not stop thinking about Obama. I hold in very high esteem his success at Harvard and how he carries himself as a father. I know they want to drill down that he's not a leader but I beg to differ. He's leading America to voting for a black man. He makes people want to go to the polls and vote and I believe that Washington is ready to embrace his charisma. I've never donated to a campaign before but I donated to his. I'm excited about switching parties. I don't feel like I'm voting against something but that I'm voting for something.

Sarah doesn't inspire me. I think she let her daughter down by not empowering her so she could better decisions for her future. I'm also aware that Sarah was plucked from the bottom of the hill and put onto the top. Hillary climbed it. She faced Kenneth Starr and Carl Rove and overcame lots of baggage to get as far as she did. Hillary planned every step of her campaign and she did it on her terms.

I think that Sarah is an excellent choice to help the ticket but she is not the right choice for the position she is supposed to fill. And if McCain believes that she is the right choice, then it leaves me wondering if maybe National Security really isn't the threat the Republicans are leading us to believe it is. I'm giving McCain the benefit of the doubt that he analyzed the severity and decided that she could handle the job.

I have a tremendous amount of respect for Dick Cheney. I don't agree with his politics but that man is smart, cool headed, solid and he carries a lot of self respect. He's someone I would want to listent to. If he will get up in front of America and put his reputation on the line and tell us that he genuinely believes that Sarah Palin is the right choice for the role of VP, one heart beat away from President, then I'll reconsider my opinion. But you know what? Mr. Cheney isn't a bullshit kinda guy; he values his reputation. That's why we don't see a lot of him. He's not....a politician. His silence on this issue is noted.

I am sick of cynicism and that was what the RNC oozed this evening. I believe that Obama is setting the pace of this campaign. Sarah's presence in this campaign is a direct response to Obama's success; I genuinely don't believe she represents change. I don't think that Obama is going to lose ground but I do believe that gaining ground might be a bit more difficult. He beat Hillary, so I'm fairly certain he'll beat McCain.

Obama is my choice. He's intelligent, he's ambitious, he cares about people and he doesn't try to piss on my leg and tell me it's raining. I feel inspired and I believe in a better future when I hear him speak. I believe he's the one.

Sarah Palin and Sexism

So, the Republicans think the left and the media are being sexist about Sarah Palin. Really? Guess what? We aren't the ones that made this about gender, the Republicans are. Do you really think the left's response would have been this extreme if the selection was Kaye Bailey Hutchison or Condoleezza Rice? Or how about Carly Fiorina? What about the Governor of Hawaii?

The Republicans released a video of Sarah shooting an automatic rifle the day the announcement was made; and that video was played over and over again all day. That image was to appeal to men, not women. As a general rule, women aren't interested in shooting guns; it's really a man's sport. It doesn't mean that women don't shoot guns because as we all know, there are always exceptions to the general rule. But men do find a women who shoot guns to be very sexy.

Sarah was in a Beauty Contest. What does that mean? It means she looks great in a bathing suit. That's a man's favorite part of the contest; they don't care how she looks in an evening gown.

She's very young and would be totally unable to fly solo. Nothing about her really intimidates men. Condoleezza could actually be President if it came to that. Kaye probably could, too. Men don't have to worry about Sarah getting any ideas about advancing Women's issues. She's made it pretty clear that she's still a little backward thinking in that department. And being the mother of small children makes her vulnerable.

No, McCain wanted to give the Republican party a little dose of Viagra. Sarah was definitely a man's choice and one made without the input of women. His choice was very sexist. And he may be right, because as the saying goes, "Sex does Sell".

Put a seriosly qualified woman on the ticket and you're point will be taken seriously.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Sarah Palin - the gentleman's choice

The more I think about it the more convinced I am that Palin wasn't necessarily selected to attract disenfranchised Clinton voters. Yes, they want those voters but more importantly, they need a strong Republican turnout at the polls.

Who is the Republican Party? As of late, it's become the party of the White Christian man. And here's what makes Sarah perfect for them. First of all, she looks like she could have posed for Sports Illustrated at some point in her life. If the ticket wins, these morally righteous men can continue to lust over her. So the party is hoping to bring the men over to their side and are banking that they'll think with that other part of their anatomy.

Secondly, it would appear she was pregnant all the time. Christian men like to keep their women pregnant. It's easier to control them. Palin may be a tiger in Alaska, a whopping population of about 700,000, but she's just a cub here; and she's in way over her head. They know her kids will come first. That puts her in the position of having to choose her battles. Ain't no way this woman is going to become President. So they better make sure the Speaker of the House is a Republican.

And finally, she hunts. Men in the party won't have to worry about her trying to take their guns away from them. They know she's not going to get all queasy and grossed out over blood, so she's probably more tolerant about war. Nothing sexier to a man than a beautiful woman with a gun in her hands.

We live in interesting times. That's for sure.

So, recently we find out that Sarah's 17 year old daughter is pregnant. Perfect. The positive spin that McCain is putting on this is that it is one more example of Palin's commitment to her pro-life position as well has his ability to think outside the box. I can't help but wonder if Sarah discussed birth control with her daughter. Or, does Sarah embrace the entire Right Wing enchilada that professes abstinence is to be the only form of birth control that should be available to teens. Obviously, a very effective tactic.

Didn't Nickelodeon just recently fire a Spears girl because she turned out to be a pregnant unwed teen? I wonder what Rush Limbaugh, Chris Baker, O'Reilly etc. had to say about that and how different that tone is now that's Palin's daughter. I say let's keep all young teenage girls in the dark about birth control. We certainly need more teens having babies!

I think that Sarah is being exploited and I think she's clueless about it. But I can't blame her, really. I'm sure that being asked to be someone's VP is very alluring and isn't something that comes along every day. Who wouldn't want to jump at the chance.

I can't relate to her and I don't know many women who can. I don't think it will be long before she and her family begin to feel like fish out of water and long to go back to the wonderful, simple life they had in Alaska. And then, at that moment, she will become human.

Monday, September 01, 2008