U-S Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky was just in SC for a fundraiser. At the event he essentially said that it's great for the GOP to win the 'red' states, but if they hope to win in swing states or even 'blue' states, "we have to be a bigger party." He went on to say "we have to look like the rest of America. We need more people in the party. And when we do that, we'll be the dominant party again." This pretty much echoes the post-mortum from earlier this year when the RNC dissected the Mitt Romney loss in the presidential race and gave the country 10 ways for the Republican Party to revelant again in presidential races. Amongst those points was broadening their appeal to the young, women and minorities...and stop clinging to sociological ideals that drive the young, the women and minorities to the Democrats. Now, keep in mind, Rand Paul was the darling of the tea party just a few minutes ago before Ted Cruz became their poster boy. But putting forth ideals like 'expanding the base', makes him look like just another Republicans who's not willing to stand up for what they believe in, and it's driving the most consevative Republicans away from the Rand Paul camp.
Speaking as a non-republican...which is rare in South Carolina...I think he's right. Is it better to put someone in the White House, like a Chris Christie, who may not be a far right as you want, or is it better to lose the presidency while backing a candidate like Ted Cruz? Those on the far Right will argue that being moderate or centrist didn't help in the last 2 elections with McCain and Romney. You're right. But I think it was because so many people in the GOP stayed away from the polls since those candidates didn't 'energize' them enough and didn't espouse enough conservative ideals. Again I ask....would you rather have 90 percent of your ideals backed by the White House....or zero? Seems like and easy choice.
Being a non-republican, I'm not trying to tell you how to win the White House in 2016, it just seems like a no-brainer.
I heard a quote from one of my new favorite people the other day, Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson said "the good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it." It sounds like a innoucous quote, but it's really the basis of the arguement between science and faith. I've always been a very scientific person, so to me there is no question about evolution, climate change or whether or not someone is born gay. To me, all of those are proven.....they're facts...and not up for debate. So when someone tells me that the earth is 5-6000 years old or that 95 percent of climate scientists are wrong or that someone chooses to be gay and can be 'cured'....I can only shake my head. Maybe it's too many years of watching Star Trek, but there's no logic to the arguement. Scientists come up with proof of many things, but if it flies in the face of faith, they are looked at as having an agenda and their proof is looked at as being flawed. Gallileo was driven from the chuch because he had the audacity to say the Earth revolved around the Sun...not vice versa as the church said. DaVinci used to have to steal bodies from graves because the church wouldn't let anyone dissect a cadaver to study anatomy. Eventually science won out. It will again.
People have argued with me that doctors used bleeding to cure people because the science of the time showed that it was 'bad blood' causing your illnesses. That's a good point. We become more knowledgable as science progresses. Doctors and scientists were able to find that practices such as 'bleeding' were flawed because technology increased, but also because the church evenutally allowed experiements to be done....leading to more knowledge. Also, in the world of science, the word 'theory' is used differently than in normal life. To a scientist, a theory is a provable thought or process, whereas to you and me....a theory is a belief that hasn't been proven yet. So when you hear that term thrown around referring to evolution or something else, it means it's real.
Faith is a wonderful thing. To believe in something or someone you can't see or prove is tough. Maybe being scientific like I am is the easy way out.
Today is Halloween. I used to love dressing up as a kid. Going from house to house to beg for food. What a nice trait to teach our kids....begging is not only encouraged, it's rewarded!! As a teen, I went to a few parties here and there, but the holiday really blossomed in college when it gave everyone just one more reason to cut loose with wreckless abandon. Some of my fondest college memories, fuzzy though they may be, are from Halloween parties. After college, the radio stations I worked for usually had costume parties at local bars, giving me another excuse to celebrate and keep the spirit alive. But, after a while, those parties stopped, so my built-in excuse to dress up and party went away. Then I started having to get up earlier for the radio station, so not only was I staying at home on Halloween, but I'm going to bed during trick-or-treating hours. Know what that means? That means the lights at the Priest house won't be on tonight and there will be no candy to be had. Does that make me 'that guy"? The "stay off my lawn' guy? The old guy that used to keep your footballs and frisbees when they went into his yard guy? Oh God I hope not. I still have fun, just not as much and just not as late and I used to. I don't mind neighbor kids at all....I just value sleep more. Besides, I don't think I'm in the old-guy bracket yet. They didn't ask me if I get the senior discount at Kroger yesterday.....on Senior Day, no less!!! I haven't reached the age when I can go up to random women and compliment them on their appearance without fear of getting slapped. When old guys do that, it's 'cute'...if I do it, I'm creepy. One of these days I'll make the transition from creepy to cute. Nobody's been able to tell me when that day arrives, and I can't really tell you if that's a transition I'm wanting to make.
Everyone knows that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. The fact that everyone knows this is a testament to the great PR work done by the American Cancer Society and other entities aimed at getting rid of this form of cancer. How did they accomplish this? Even though breast cancer is just as deadly as other forms of the disease, they've made the campaign into something....well, cute. I'm not being flippant when I say this, but it's a much easier sell to the American public to stand up and fight for boobs than pretty much anything else. Obviously, women will get behind it because it affects them a vast majority of the time, but we all know that men have a fascination for boobs too. Then you mix in "Save the Ta-Tas" bumper stickers, and wristbands for High School students that read "I 'heart' Boobies" and you get an avalanche of support from all walks of life...you and old. Because boobs are cute and easy to talk about in public. You don't see that kind of response to Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month....do you even know when that is? It's March...but I didn't know that either, until I just looked it up. The thing I worry about, though, is that people will start to forget about the real reason that everyone's wearing pink this month...not only to raise awareness, but also to raise money to fight this disease. Sometimes when things get too mainstream, you forget why you started the fight in the first place.
I also hope that eventually people will start to turn their attention to other forms of cancer that aren't so 'cute' and easy to talk about in public...and that they will also get the kind of attention and acceptance that wearing pink does all October long.
One of my favorite rock and roll quotes comes from Dire Straits, I think the song is Solid Rock...."when you point your finger cuz your deal fell through, you've got 3 more fingers pointing back at you..." To me, that's what's happening in DC right now. Everyone's pointing fingers...everyone's blaming the other side and nobody's taking responsibility for the 18th government shutdown since 1977. If you've heard me on the air, I do point the finger at the Republicans for starting this latest mess. They knew that making the Affordable Care Act a part of the government funding bill (the CR)was going to be a deal-breaker. If for no other reason than the CR and the ACA have nothing to do with one another...they're totally separate. So when the GOP says the Dems won't negotiate on Obamacare....well, duh...it's not part of the government funding bill anyway. Drives me crazy! Now, the talk is starting to shift towards next weeks debt-ceiling. The GOP is saying the Dems need to negotiate about where were can cut the budget....not including Obamacare. In my mind, that's reasonable. Nancy Pelosi was quoted the other day saying that there are no more cuts to be made ANYWHERE in the budget...I think her quote was "the cupboard is bare". Really? We see how many millions and billions are spent on programs outside of this country or even within our borders that quite of few of us would look at as being nonessential. Believe me, the cupboard isn't bare. The problem is, we have 2 sides that have proven through the years that can't get along and can't compromise. in 2011, they came up with the heralded 'super-committee' made up of both sides...looking at the budget page by page to see where cuts culd be made. After weeks of poring through the budget, they came up emty handed...they couldn't agree on anything....NOT ONE THING. Why should we think that they're going to have any more success this time....in under a week? The only people who lose are the American people....and hopefully some congressmen and senators who may lose some seats.
So, as we continue in our 18th shutdown, if we get one more, we can quote another rock band, the Stones..."here's comes your 19th government shutdown...." Let's hope it doesn't come for a while...if this one ever ends.
Last Friday, Steve Porter passed away. For those of you new to the area, Steve was the original host of the Hot Talk Morning Show back on New Year's Day 1995. Yes, Steve worked on holidays too!!! I was associated with WRNN as Program Director since 1997, but didn't go full-time on the morning show with him until 2001. In the 10 years we shared the airwaves, I learned several things from Steve...how to write, how to report, how to interview. Steve was a good Republican and I'm not...so we were bound to have disagreements on political issues, but I always found him very open minded on social issues so there weren't very many disagreements there. He was also the consummate professional, so even though we'd disagree on-air, as soon as the microphone was off, we forgot what the tiff was about and talked about the next segment. I get up around 2:15 every morning so I can come in...scour the websites and papers and prep for the show. Steve would come in around 5:40, scan the paper, write some stories, record the news and still be ready for the show at 6. I think a little more prep time would have been better, but Steve's day to day life WAS his prep. After we got off the air, Steve would go to meetings and interviews through the day, so that when he came in the next day, he was already prepped on the big issues without having the read about them. Plus, all you had to do was mention a country, a politcal leader or issue form the past 60 years or a media-type and Steve would have a story about visiting there, interviewing them or working with them. In 10 years, I think I heard most of Steve's stories...a couple times each....and could re-count them as Steve would tell them on the air. At his funeral this week, I enjoyed hearing some of those stories again and hearing a few I hadn't heard before.
Steve had a tough personal life, losing 2 children and his first wife. He moved to Myrtle Beach, where he met and married Robbie and got a new instant family with her kids, Jed, Sloan and Taylor. It rejuvinated him and it showed. He was as proud of those kids as if they were his own....and would brag on them constantly. Seeing them at the service the other day...it was great to see what amazing kids they grew up to be. I'm sure Steve had at least a small part in that, and Robbie, you did an amazing job too.
I hate to admit, but after Steve left the station 2 years ago...we lost touch. I'm horrible at keeping in touch with people....just ask my family. I told Robbie that, because Steve wasn't around anymore. It didn't make me feel better for being a bad friend...but I just wanted to let someone know how bad I felt. I had meant to reach out to him on several occassions, but didn't...always thinking that there would be time. There wasn't.
Steve was a newsman for more than 50 years. It was in his blood. After traveling to more than 120 countries in his career, he's making one last voyage. Steve was always trying to help others and was a good, honest person...so I'm sure his final destination will be a good one.