Sunday, September 07, 2008

Branching out...and a little about politics

I have been branching out in the world of technology lately after finally fulfilling my New-Every-Two requirement with Verizon Wireless. For the last two-ish years, I have been using the LG Chocolate Cherry. For the last one-and-one-half-ish years, I have basically not liked it. I didn't like the sliding action or the touch wheel or the size. And right after I got the phone, they came out with an upgrade to it that looked much better, and I was mad I had bought it before the new one came out. live and learn, and I made it through the two-ish years (with the one blip on the screen when my phone fried itself and I had to get a new one), and now I was ready for something new.

My new phone arrived the other day. Now, I am the proud owner of the LG Voyager Titanium. Thanks to my on-line discount and my New-Every-Two credit, I paid only $50 for this phone that is so much more than my old phone was. This Voyager has been billed as Verizon's answer to the iPhone. It's a lovely piece of equipment with great features (most of which I am too cheap to pay to use), and I love it. I especially love the touch screen on the front and the full QWERTY keyboard that it flips open to reveal. I don't text all that often, but I would to do more of it, and that keyboard will help!

I also was excited to hear this week that Google was introducing their new web browser, Chrome. I used Internet Explorer for a long, long time, and when they came out with the newest version, I tried to continue using it, but I hated it. I read around in the Blogosphere about what other people were using, and I became a Firefox convert. Firefox has everything I would ever need in a web browser. I love that it can open new tabs when I want it to. I love that it is fast and doesn't freeze up on me. And I love that it supports Google's toolbar because without the "AutoFill" feature, I would be a much less happy (yet also much less lazy) internet addict.

Enter Chrome. Of course, I downloaded the beta version right away. After all, I love Google, Gmail, Blogger, the Google toolbar...all Google products. The only non-Google product I use regularly is Flickr, and that is just because I joined it before I learned about Picasa. I am big fan of Google. I couldn't wait to try Chrome.

And? Eh...I am not so excited about it anymore. I do enjoy that the homepage is a snapshot of your most-visited pages. However, that is the only thing about Chrome that I like better than Firefox. I have heard people say that they like that it is so clean and spare. Well, I like to have various toolbars at the top of my window to help me more conveniently navigate the internet. I would maybe have expected some of the same functionality as the Google toolbar, but not even the AutoFill feature is to be seen. And the thing that bothers me most of all is that there is no "home" button. It has "front," "back," and "refresh," but "stop" and "home" are mysteriously missing. I use them both quite often, so a browser without them is not one for me.

I will, however, keep an eye on it to see if any changes are made that make it more my style.

Now, switching gears into the political arena, which is a place I don't often find myself...

I am a registered Republican. There, I said it. Please feel free to throw rotten eggs and tomatoes at me. I am sure that some think I deserve it. And I will be voting for McCain/Palin in November.

The other night, I read something on another blog that got me so inflamed that I started typing out an off-the-cuff diatribe about the reasons that I am supporting McCain/Palin this year and the reasons that I would not, in any version of this life, cast a vote for Obama/Biden. Wisely, I hit "save" instead of "publish," went back the next day, reread it, and hit "delete." I sounded much like a raving lunatic, and that is not what I wanted to sound like. I wanted to sound like the educated, relatively rational woman that I am...not some shrill, borderline hysterical female.

Anyway, here's the deal. Every time someone mentions to me that Sarah Palin is anti-abortion and doesn't support sex education in schools, I just shake my head in disbelief. Is this really what you are most worried about? Gas costs $3.50 per gallon (ballpark figure), my estimated heating oil costs almost doubled this year (and some may say I got off easy), there is a war going on in Iraq, banks are failing, and you are worried about abortion? Really?

Here's the deal...America has a three-branch government for a reason. Just because Sarah Palin becomes vice-president doesn't mean that the abortion clinics across America are going to be forced to close their doors. She will not, as one person, have that much power. Regarding sex education, she advocates abstinence-only education and does not support explicit sex education programs in schools. Well, you know what? If anyone is going to speak explicitly about sex to my children (when I have them), I want it to be me. I will perhaps forever be scarred by watching my poor, quiet friend Shannon be made to put a condom on a banana in tenth grade. Mortifying. And when the time came for me to put a condom on someone? I couldn't do it! The banana-watching didn't work! He had to do it for himself! So that was really effective sex education, don't you think? Again, not an issue I care about.

What I do care about is that we are in tough times, and McCain is someone with experience in government who can help us save our country. And Palin is someone with executive experience who can be right beside him to help us on our way. In my mind, this is not about her being a woman or a hockey mom or a VPilf. It's about her and McCain, together, being the best chance this country has to get out of the mess that we have gotten into. When they lay out their plans, I see substance. When their opponent lays out his plans, I see vague promises of "change" without many concrete plans to back that up.

I have rarely gotten this interested in a Presidential election in the past. Eight years ago, I voted for Al Gore, and after seeing him drop off the face of the map after losing the election, I was very, very happy to have George W. Bush in office when 9/11 happened. Al Gore did not have it in him to get our country through such a tough time, and no matter what you think about Bush, he came through. Four years later, there was no way I was casting a vote for John Kerry, so I helped to vote Bush back into office.

Now, we are making history. For the first time ever, a black man and a woman are running for the top two offices in the United States. No matter which candidate wins, history will be made. However, when choosing between an experienced United State Senator and one who has been in office only a few years, I will be going with the experienced candidate who I think is best prepared to serve our country as President.

And that candidate is John McCain.

That being said, I know that most of the people who read my blog and comment regularly are not on my side of the fence on this one. I hope we can still be friends!!!


lonna said...

I'm on the other side, but we can still be friends. I think the biggest problem is that both sides have plans for the country when they take over, but the media isn't touching them. I know Obama's plans because they are on his website. I don't know McCain's plans because he doesn't talk about them and neither does the media. All I hear are vague ideas, which is what they other side says about Obama. I really think that the media just isn't helping the voters. They are focusing on the most volatile aspects of the election and that does not include plans for the future by either side.

NME said...

It isn’t about abortions. It’s about the girls who might die getting back alley abortions or the unwanted children that may be born without social services the Republicans don’t want to provide them. It isn’t about public teenage sex embarrassment or how to put on a condom but making sure that they all learn the reasons they need to put one on – to prevent disease or more unwanted, unsupported children. It isn’t patriotism. It’s about people. To me Republicans are driven by ethnocentrism, business and self interest and not helping the disenfranchised or doing things for the greater good. They don’t think about others, at least not positively. And quite frankly I find it saddening that you throw yourself in with that lot. I would have thought that a nurse, a woman who has dedicated her career in the care of others would not throw yourself in with that lot. I had seen you as far more noble.

I’m about as liberal as they come so I don’t see us seeing eye to eye on most things. And that is fine. If you vote on issues, the real details of what a candidate means to do on a nitty gritty level – if you are an informed voter and cast your vote on facts and not on what the perception of character is then that is all we can ask of each other as Americans. And I am happy that people are interested in politics, fired up on a personal level rather than not giving a damn. I just hope that isn’t just blog fodder and water cooler talk.

And I have to say it – how can people say they want change and then vote McCain who is about as entrenched in Washington as they come and has duplicated Bush’s platforms. That is clearly more of the same. And if that is what you want – cool, but I just don’t know how they can be spun to think it’s any sort of change.

Anyway – peace.

MC said...

I myself am not anti-abortion. Maybe I should have mentioned that. My point was that Sarah Palin's views on abortion do not mean anything...she as one person will not be able to undo all that has been done in this country in order to make abortion legal. Therefore, when someone brings up the abortion issue, I just think that they are focusing on the wrong thing. That is NOT the biggest issue in this election, and it is the one that a lot of people are throwing out there when they mention their dislike of Sarah Palin.

patrice said...

"For the first time ever, a black man and a woman are running for the top two offices in the United States. No matter which candidate wins, history will be made."

wholeheartedly agree.

obviously, this whole election is extremely multifaceted. there are so many different ways to evaluate and look at things. it can be hard to muddle through. but I really feel as if most people who are vocal about their feelings have already decided who they are voting for and the rest is basically just reasons why. I think alot of people, including myself, go backwards into this, knowing who they are most likely to vote for and then finding reasons to support that decision. I....have no point here other than to say that. cause it's interesting.

anyway. we are all entitled to our opinions. I think the hardest thing is to ensure that the way you speak about your opinions doesn't immediately marginalize those who don't agree. there's gonna be plenty of that going on in the media.

NME said...

Social services and equality are my biggest issues. Those may not be yours. But abortion is the biggest issue to some. And there isn't anything wrong with that.

And I'm not touching Palin with a ten foot pole. I have my issues with her personally - but that isn't what I'm voting on so it doesn't matter.

NME said...

Patrice - you are dead on with this "knowing who they are most likely to vote for and then finding reasons to support that decision." And Mary, I am sorry. I didn't mean to marginalize you or come off as hostile. Like you I got fired up and wrote a comment but didn't think better of it and sit on it as you did.

MC said...

No problem!

Megha Bansal said...

Please don't hate chrome. How to get the 'Home' button on the toolbar? Click on the spanner button on the right top of the browser and then options and on the basics tab in the home page section, check the box that says Show Home button...

I found a plug in for google toolbar use on chrome, but i haven't used it yet, so will tell you once i have.

ok about sex education in school, you can teach you kid and so can i, but can everyone else also do it? It's not about the banana or maybe it is, it needs to be said and not all parents will/can do it. So it needs to be said.

And I heard on the radio the other day that in this election so many issues will come up between two people who have never had an argument before that it might make people mad. I have already experienced it and I am not 100% sure i like it.

Sarah Palin's abortion stance is really the least of my worries, the worry I have is, if tomorrow something happens to Mc Cain, (God forbid) will she be able to do the things we want/expect our President to be able to do?

Librarian Amy said...

You know that I'm as liberal as they come, and I'm a little red in the face on this one... so I'm going to try to be levelheaded here. But I am a one issue voter, and that's because I never ever want me, or anyone I know and love, to be subjected to a butcher instead of a legal medical procedure - be it abortion, not being able to get the pill (or it not being covered by insurance), or anything to do with my girl parts. It's a slippery slope, and I don't want the first woman to be in power at that level to be one who wants to legislate what I do or don't do to my body.

I think we'll just agree to disagree here, but I can tell you that I gave the birds and the bees talk to more than one of our sorority sisters - you're going to be a responsible mother who educates her children. There are others who just aren't.

Adventures In Babywearing said...

I really do appreciate you being willing to stand up for what you believe and think- because I am also a registered republican but VERY unsure right now about this election. I love to see opinions from BOTH sides and unfortunately in blog land we mainly see the other view and not a republican's view in a clear sense. Thank you!


Anonymous said...

Wow, nme sounds like a real class act. Don't bleeding heart liberals always claim that they're so tolerant of others? Yet nme is obviously completely intolerant of anyone who doesn't share her political views, going so far as to completely generalize and stereotype Republicans, not to mention blatantly insulting the person who writes this blog. People have different opinions...not everyone supports abortion rights, including *gasp* many women. Look at how Lonna's response differs...she says she's on the other side of the political fence but she's obviously completely secure in dealing with people whose beliefs differ from hers. Too bad we can't all be more like that.

Anonymous said...

I think you're brave for posting anything about politics. Between you and me, I am voting for Obama/Biden, but I have personally met John McCain. He's a good guy and very experienced and smart. I like the old John better than the John that's been a mini me of Bush. I really like Joe Biden and I do like Obama, but I liked Hillary more.

Regarding my vote, I was kind of on the fence until McCain picked Sarah Palin as his running mate. She's not the sharpest knife in the drawer and I do not think she is a good representative of our country. Also, I do not like her very conservative and often uninformed views on many subjects.

Even though you're voting for them, I'll still read your blog!

Allison said...

oh and PS this is Allison from creditcardhell writing the above comment!