Tuesday, December 11, 2007

News and Notes

CENTURY update:

I don’t want to jinx this by giving away too much or making it sound like a complete, done-deal… but I may have found the perfect job! Two months ago I applied for it and had an interview that went very, very well, but unfortunately the organization ended up going with someone else. However that someone left a few weeks ago after being offered a much higher paying position elsewhere, so the job opened up again. After interviewing again, I seem to be the front runner and I’ll know something definite by the end of the week or early next week. Pray for me, my friends. After such a long time of languishing between dead end jobs and temporary assignments, God may be finally rewarding me. THE Justin Dudley CENTURY appears to be getting off to a wonderful start!

As for THE Justin Dudley CENTURY blog, things are starting off nicely. Special thanks to Mr. Partridge, The Corn-man, and .mathr. for contributing thus far. Look for something great from the Representative of Estrogen as soon as she finishes her finals. A splendid time is guaranteed for all.

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I’m a lover of lists. Especially “all time favorite lists”, and I intend to showcase a few of them over the next few weeks, including books, songs, and movies. But right now, allow me to present…

TOP TEN LIST OF PET NAMES… that Abby Lee and I call each other on a daily basis.

1) kitten (her)
2) puppy (me)
3) sweetiekins (her)
4) sweetie pie (me)
5) sugar nipples (her)
6) lovah (both)
7) sugar booger booboo nuts (me)
8) snooky wookem dumpling buns (her)
9) snippy whippy love poodle (me)
10) little lady cheesy puffy (her)

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It’s not my intention to make this blog an outlet for my political views like I did with my last blog, but I will from time to time pop in to share my current opinions and update those of you who care on the ever changing political news stories of the day. One of the reasons I’ve asked my friends to participate with their own material is to politely give you, the reader, something to gnaw on if you find yourself not giving a shit about… well… things that matter.

You’re welcome.

But, for you caring, intelligent individuals out there, enjoy this informative diatribe that I’m about to bring foreward.

If you’re as avid of a 2008 election follower as I am, then you’re probably aware of the top two stories coming out of the primary states at this very moment.

Obama and Hillary locked in virtual tie in Iowa

Following Obama’s terrific performance at the Jefferson-Jackson dinner in October (arguably his finest speech since his breakout address at the 2004 DNC), Obama has finally caught up to Heir Clinton in all of the major polls leading up to the crucial Iowa caucus, a mere three weeks away. And thanks to sister Oprah’s help in the campaign, his Audaciousness is now only just a few points behind in New Hampshire and South Carolina. If the "big mo" (momentum) continues, then this race... already promised to be a dramatic one... will be a true nail biter.

I for one, can't wait. I try not to make predictions but it's hard for me not to do so with this much interest and hope vested. This race could go any way, and while I am fascinated that I can actually type that (because, really, who ACTUALLY thought Hillary would have ANY competition a year ago?), it makes me all the more nervous. In any case, I'll give it my best and pray to God that I don't jinx anything in doing so.

I think Obama is going to win Iowa. It'll be close, but he's going to take the prize. In doing so, Hillary's air of inevitability will evaporate completely and the win will push the esteemed Senator from Illinois into the driver’s seat of the front-runner stockcar. From there, Hillary wins New Hampshire but by a razor-thin margin. She’ll claim a huge victory but anyone with a real instinct for the political game will sense that it is only a token win. Obama cleans up in South Carolina in a blowout that no one could have predicted two months ago and it’s smooth sailing from there as he the voters scream “FINISH HER!” and Barack “Kano” Obama punches Foreward, Down, Foreward, B, A, B, Foreward, Start into his Super Nintendo control pad and rips Hill’s still-beating heart out.

He then goes on to become the next President of the United States of America.

“Whoa, whoa, whoa, there! Hold your fuckin’ mule, Mr. Dudley!”, you say. “What about the Republican nomination? Hmmm?”

Well, that leads me to the second biggest election ’08 news story.

And my views on the matter may actually surprise some of you.

Mike Huckabee, front runner?

It's really astounding to me how my political instincts seem to grow keener as the years pass; my predictions more accurate. When I was 6, I predicted that George H.W. Bush would beat Dukakis. In Junior High, I predicted from the outset that Bill would beat Bob (though I proudly had a photo of Senator Dole displayed in my locker). And, of course, who could forget my excited pimping, on my old blog, of Barack the night of the 2004 Democratic convention?

Well, as far back as last year, I was telling my political-savvy friends to keep an eye on the former Governor of Arkansas, and I wasn't talking about Bubba.

Friends, I've been following the 2008 game since the DAY after the 2004 election, and one thing I noticed at the very beginning was that the Republicans didn't have a clear front runner.

Three candidates were, at first, considered in the "top tier"

* John McCain - the maverick war hero who gave Dubya a run for his money in 2000 until the Jesus-loving Governor of Texas, along with his Mark Hannah-ish political hitman Karl Rove destroyed him in South Carolina by spreading rumors that he was the father of an illigitimate black child. Republican historical conventional wisdom said early on that he would be the favorite this time around (since Republicans have a history of nominating "who's next"), but his anti-Bush actions post 2000 and the hot water he got into by trashing Pat Robertson and Jerry Fallwell soon proved too much for the man to take on. He will not get the nomination. No, Mr. McCain will only go down as one of the great "what if's?" of presidential election history.

Rudy Giuliani - I'll admit that I was once a fan of Rudy. Less than a year ago I included a picture of him on my Myspace heros section. Even though I find him harder and harder to like as the election season rolls on, I still find that I have a soft spot for him. I guess after Katrina and the numerous other Bush Administration screw ups, I find that anyone who can manage a crisis correctly still deserves a measure of respect. But, aside from Pat Robertson... who shockingly endorsed him recently (showing that the old fuck is just losing it), seeing the christian right line up against a pro-gay, pro-choice, and anti-gun ex mayor of New York City would be like living in bizarro world. To put it simply: it ain't gonna happen. And if that ain't gonna happen, then I have my doubts as to whether he can win the nomination OR the general election.

Mitt Romney - that other pro gay, anti-gun, pro-choice ‘publican (until recently when he had a change of heart… ie: decided he wanted to be President). There are FEW Republicans I LOATHE more than this bastard. Not counting my opinion that he's just a slimy, bigoted hack, this guy's flip flops make John Kerry look like Harry Truman. Say what you will about George W. Bush but at least HE has a spine. At least HE has conviction. Mitt Romney has neither. His problem with the religious right, who he's desperately trying to court, is that he's a Mormon. I realize that what I'm about to say may be rightfully interpreted as bigoted itself, but any Christian faith/cult that believes the Garden of Eden was in Missouri is... quite simply... INSANE. To justify this petty remark, I need only to quote Woody Allen. "I'm a bigot... but for the Left."

Not only did the Republicans not have a clear front runner, but the primary voting bloc... the religious right... seemed to be without viable options as well. Who on earth could the evangelicals unite behind? There was Sam Brownback, an ardent pro-life Senator from Kansas... but with the personality of a carp, I didn't really see his campaign going anywhere. No one else, it seemed.

And then I learned a little about Mike Huckabee. On paper he sounded like a heavyweight. A successful two-term governor of a southern state who also happened to be a former Baptist preacher. Filing his name away for future reference, I kept tabs on him but never considered him to be a top-tier-worthy candidate. But nearly a month after first hearing about him, I stumbled upon a speech from him on C-Span.

I was immediately impressed.

I didn't agree with anything he was saying on the political issues of the day, but being a fan of great oratory, I was struck by his skill and almost addictive affability. That doesn't happen often, I think. Not to me and certainly not to anyone else I know. The only other candidate off of the top of my head that seems to have that same affect is Barack Obama on a few Republicans in my family. My grandmother, for example. She's hated every Democrat since Harry Truman, but she goes crazy for him. I found that surprising, obviously, but I couldn't relate... until I saw the Huckabee speech. Afterward, I started to tell people about him. "Watch for this guy. He's going to be huge. I'm not sure if he'll get the nomination, but I think he's most certainly the next Republican VP candidate", I stated in an email to my friend Matt several months ago.

Something strange happened, though. Actually, nothing happened at all. He languished... he stalled. Never registering above 6%, I began to lose hope. Not hope that he would be the next President, mind you, but hope that someone so decent could perhaps be successful in a party that I had lost all hope in. He continued to deliver great speeches and he continued to have solid debate performances... but... nothing. Even the evangelical community seemed tepid in it's response.

Then I figured out why. I watched a speech given by him to a major conservative convention, and in that speech, he spent most of the time talking about how Christian Conservatives should spend more time helping the less fortunate, feeding the hungry, and clothing the poor than gay bashing, tax cuts, and guns. Immediately after the speech, an interviewer asked a random group of convention goers their opinion of him and the common response was "he sounds like a damn liberal!"

What's astounding about that statement is that helping the less fortunate SHOULDN'T be a conservative OR a liberal position. Nor should it be a christian position. To me, it's a HUMAN position. Even more astounding is that Huck is most certainly a conservative. Aside from a few, modest and reasonable tax increases as Governor, he may have the most solid conservative record of anyone other than John McCain or Ron Paul. For those reasons, I can't vote for him because I don't share the same philosophical views. But I can share respect and admiration.

And it's because of this that I'm "tickled pink" about his sudden rise in the polls. After coming in a close second place in the Iowa straw poll a month or so ago (beaten only by Mitt Romney who spent millions in buying votes as opposed to Huck who could not afford to buy a single vote), and an impressive showing in the last CNN/Youtube debate, he is now polling first place in Iowa and gaining steadily in New Hampshire and South Carolina. The evangelical communities in these states are helping, though it's yet to be seen if the religious right nationally will rally in the same way. In national polls he still doesn't register highly, but the ONLY polls that matter right now are those conducted in the primary states.

So, where do we go from here?

That's as unpredictable of a question as the election process itself. Anything could happen in the next three weeks, and I'll continue to watch it closely. You should too. Whether you are as interested in politics as I am or not, this time in our lives is guaranteed to never be boring.

To the Undiscovered Country.

The Future.

- Justin Dudley

5 comments:

Ben said...

Glad to see you back buddy! It made my day when I discovered this. Huckabee is now dominating in Iowa:

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/election_20082/2008_presidential_election/iowa/republican_iowa_caucus

And not so fast that he doesn't share the same support nationwide. Many polls have him leading.

Also, this poll shows that Obama is leading Clinton in NH. Though he still appears to be losing by the same amount in Iowa:

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/election_20082/2008_presidential_election/new_hampshire/election_2008_new_hampshire_democratic_primary

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/election_20082/2008_presidential_election/iowa/democratic_iowa_caucus

Just my two cents (actually Rasmussen's two cents). But mostly in agreement with your two cents

June said...

Good job at staying away from the politics! That is like a fat guy saying he will not go to the buffet. Anyway, good job...you shared a few things I was not fully aware of, but I 100% agree with you that 2008 is going to be exciting & nerve wrecking. I hope more people get involved and realize how big this election is going to be!!

Amber said...

Question: I thought _I_ was Kitten?

Question: What are your thoughts on Oprah's Obama endorsement? Since there are very few people who don't love Oprah, I think she is the key.

Fact: Rudy is a douche bag.

Fact: I rarely use that term. But he earned it.

Question: Are you enjoying the Dwight-esque format?

Fact: I need a new episode of The Office Soon.

THE Justin Dudley whose Century is HIS said...

you will always be my main kitten, kitten. promise! :-)

oprah's endorsement is far more important than the last poll results show. i think only 10% or less said that it would have any significant impact, but such an entertainment-related question just begs to recieve misleading answers. ask 2,000 americans if they care about B. Spears and they'll say "no", and then turn on to Entertainment Tonight to get their fix on the latest meltdown news.

it will help him. it may not win him the nomination, but it certainly may convince some african americans leaning toward HILL to change their minds.

I love the format, and I'm craving the Office as well. I'm fully in support of the writer's strike but I'm getting frustrated with each week passing with no results!

one word. two syllables. demarcation.

Amber said...

I agree, I think it is bigger than most people realize.

That's what she said.

 

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