Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Czar of Common Sense - A Video Blog

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Pre-Thanksgiving Rant

For what seems like an eternity, the corner of 6th and Broadway, about two blocks from where I work, was empty or in construction.  About a month ago, they finally put in a brewery and restaurant.  Now being a bit of a beer snob, I was pretty stoked.  A decent brewery right by work would be kickass.

But then I walked by the place today and saw the name: Beer Company Restaurant and Brewery.  Seriously, "Beer Company?" What, were the owners too lazy to come up with a cliche Irish name? And it gets worse - the house beers are called: Brown Ale, Pale Ale, Hef, IPA, and Red Ale.  And the menu?  Well, its literally the standard pub fare.  There is absolutely no originality in the menu, in the name, or anything.

And that pisses me off because the whole point of the craft brewing movement was specifically to avoid generic beer.  Don't get me wrong, the macrobrews are just fine, but craft brewing is all about experimentation, fun, and some profit.  What's the point of brewing beer if you're going to brew the exact same beer as everyone else.  More to the point, why have a restaurant when you don't even have a name for it? Just call yourself Applebee's and be done with it.  Actually, wait, Applebee's has an original name.


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

I. Am. So. Pissed. Off. Right. Now.

Okay, that's not quite true.  In the wake of the complete and utter disaster that was last night, I am more or less depressed.  But to make a few of you happy, here are my thoughts:

1) Anger With Obama and the Democratic Leadership: In the last two years, Democrats had proof, actual, real proof, that Republican economic policy was a complete and utter failure, and they did nothing with it.  No mortgage foreclosure reform.  No bankruptcy reform.  A stimulus that was completely limp and relied on tax cuts (which, by the way, don't do shit in a deflationary cycle).  All we could do was stop the economic bleeding.  Now, that would have been enough to explain to the voters, but oh, fucking, no, we can't do that.

Instead of actually governing, the Democratic "Leadership" fought amongst themselves - okay the Democrats in the Senate did the fighting - and we ended up with watered down everything.  Anyway, it wasn't the liberals who fucked everything up.  It was the moderates.  The half-measures didn't help enough people, pissing off the moderates, and deflated the Democratic base.  And guess what, when you lose even some of the base, you lose the election.  The GOP figured this out thirty years ago. 

So, I'm very, very angry with the Democratic Leadership right now.  Okay, not with Nancy Pelosi, who did everything she was supposed to do.

2) Depressed Over Good People Losing: There were lots of good, smart people who lost yesterday.  Russ Feingold worked his ass off for the people of Wisconsin, and lost because of the weak-kneed bullshit of his more conservative fellow Democrats. 

Worst of all, for me personally, Howard Wayne lost to Lorie Zapf in the race for San Diego City Council.  Howard Wayne was overqualified to be a City Councilman, and who cares about people.  He might have dressed like a schlub, and wasn't a good public speaker, but Wayne is a true public servant who, when he isn't a public official, he is a public servant (literally - he is an Assistant AG).  And he lost to Lorie Zapf, who hasn't done a goddamn thing in her life for the public good, and speaks in talking points.  Ugh.

And here's where I get upset really - it would be one thing if Democrats lost to good, hard-working, smart, and well-deserving conservatives.  But they didn't, for the most part.  With the exception of Brian Sandoval - the next Governor of Nevada (and potentially huge problem for the Democrats in the future) - the GOP candidates were the dregs of the conservative movement.  Let's face it, good conservatives don't run for office, they go out and make money.  So instead of intelligent discourse, we're going to have talking points and lunatic conspiracy theories.  Fucking great.

3) Fear for the Future: We have big, big problems in this country, and this next Congress isn't going to help fix any of them.  If there's a government shutdown, we're going to end up in a full-blown deflationary cycle, and the economy will get worse.  That's for certain.  At best, we're looking at two years of gridlock.  At worst, two years of Democratic capitulation.  Fuck.

4) Hope: At least in California, we got Jerry Brown, almost passed Prop. 19, and rejected Prop. 23.  There is some hope for the future.  Some.