Friday, November 16, 2012

Something to Know - 17 November


1.   From 1987 to 2007, yours truly lived in the state of Georgia, courtesy of Delta Air Lines.   After retirement in 2004, I was resigned to accept my status of "economic exile" in a most unhappy manner.  However, Lynne and I knew we wanted to return to California, especially with our son and his future wife making plans for working at UCLA.   Since we've moved back, it has been a welcome change, politically.   Here is an NPR story about the political environment here in California:

2.  George Will has gone back to being himself again.   He was on the right track about Romney not being the right guy to be running for president.  Now, he's picking at the CPFB - Consumer Protection Financial Bureau.   This is the agency, you may recall, that  Obama had get Elizabeth Warren to run, a few years ago - but the bankers and Wall Street would have nothing to do with it.  Warren knows how the banks play games with the consumers, and how Wall Street cheats.   Elizabeth Warren withdrew her name to avoid further controversy, and the president installed a suitable replacement in a move with his power to make recess appointments.  Warren ran and has been elected to the Senate.  The CPFB has already stung the BofA with fines for improper conduct, and has forced credit card companies to clean up their act.  More is on the way.  George Will is irritated that this work should not be done by an independent agency.  Yeah, right, like the SEC and the Federal Reserve had stepped in, in the past, to protect the consumers.  The CPFB is one of the best things going for users of financial services from banks and Wall Street.    Will needs to chill out:

3.  Here we are, 10 days out from the election.  I have never seen an aftermath like his before.  I was working the campaigns for both George McGovern in 1974 and then Michael Dukakis in 1988.  Both of them lost - actually creamed - by the GOP opponent.  The Democrats, in both cases, did not turn and tear each other apart after the election.  The good fight was put up, but it was not sufficient.  Now, in 2012,  Romney's corpse was not even cold before hate mail by the Tea Party Patriots started pouring out with vile venom , and it was not even midnight of election day in California when that happened.  If the election were to be held again today, Romney would not find many people voting for him.  The vitriol thrown out, and Romney's less than gracious departure from the stage, has thrown the Republican Party into disarray - subject to a FEMA rescue?.  Gail Collins sums it up:

4.  The methods of data analysis employed by the Cave (Obama's campaign machine in Chicago), helped tremendously in his re-election.  The success will be copied for the next voting cycle.  But, is this good for us, as a nation.   Each voter is part of a specific demographic bloc that can be tracked and manipulated to receive a specific political message that translates into a favorable vote.   This act is replicated over and over again in nuanced ways for millions of voters.  Where this success goes in the future, and how this changes how campaigns are run could be a big deal.   Maybe we won't get marketed to death by massive TV ads (I hope).   Maybe Karl Rove will have to find another line of work.  However, it is for sure, that those who are really into social media adventures ( Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, etc.) all your data can and will be used to get you:

5.  Dick Cavett has left us with some great personal perspectives on some famous figures he has encountered.   You will not be disappointed with this one  -  Muhammad Ali:

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