Romney Down But Not Out

Did you see the rapid fire personal, visceral attacks that Romney took in last night’s ABC/Facebook debate?

If not, here they are:

What a cowardly, insulting interjection.

What a smug comment followed by the most self-conscious laugh. I doubt McCain won some of those independents he wants so badly with such an underhanded, glib comment.

These guys just make me sick.

So much for Huckabee’s feigned “Christian” non-negative campaign. At least Romney has the guts to put up issue ads, not just broadly and personally attack his opponents.

And again we see McCain’s true colors… his pompousness, temper, glibness, rudeness, and superiority complex is something only that many years in the senate can produce in a person.

So, here’s how I see it playing out… Romney is in a pretty close race in New Hampshire with McCain. He came in 2nd in the Iowa caucus. He won the Wyoming Primary. So currently, nationally, Romney is the front runner. Even if he comes in 2nd in New Hampshire, he will still gain more delegates, and still (likely) be in first place nationally. Even if he came in 2nd in every primary and caucus before Super-Duper Tuesday, he will still be in the lead nationally. Every state might have their differnt fair haired child republican, and choose Mitt second. Surprisingly, Mitt might just win on the Guiliani strategy… except Mitt is going all 9 rounds, not just waiting to throw the hail mary on the last play of the game.

On the other side of the aisle, Hillary had one of her best moments in this little clip:

The Writer’s Guild Strike – Networks make a fatal flaw.

While we were all hustling and bustling about getting our last minute Christmas stuff taken care of, a major development occurred in this Writer’s Guild strike which ultimately came to fruition last night.

David Letterman’s production company, Worldwide Pants Inc., struck an independent deal with the Writer’s Guild in order for his show to get back on the air by Jan 3rd.

Not to be outdone, NBC quickly wrangled to get Leno and Conan, arguably the only real assets and ratings kings NBC has left these days, back on the air as well, lest they lose some of their late night market share and advertisers to rival CBS. But, because Late Night and the Tonight Show are owned by NBC, not by an independent company like Dave Letterman’s show, they were unable to begin with their writers. Their brilliant solution? Writers! Who needs writers!


So Jay Leno and Conan O’Brien came back on last night without any writers. ERRR… umm… check that. They came back having written their own show (which is arguably crossing the picket line). Jay wrote his own monologue, making hay of the fact that he checked with his wife to see if the jokes were funny. Conan didn’t present much of an official monologue, just yammered on for an hour straight about the strike and had an unusually large number of guests.Even Dave, who had his writers, was sort of squirmy all night, obviously not comfortable with working while the rest of the industry languished.

The verdict on last night’s off-the-cuff late night episodes?? Yes, we need the writers… badly! The whole thing was just awkward, not because these guys can’t craft a joke, but because they all looked incredibly uncomfortable going on the air while their unions picketed. Even the guests squirmed.

Oh yeah, and Conan grew a beard in solidarity… who knew that guy could grow facial hair!?

So the real question is, how long can these guys last? They certainly won’t be able to remain funny for long just going out night after night and free-associating their way to a funny show. On the other hand, if they try to write everything themselves, they just won’t be able to fill the hour, or the material will be awful. Never mind the struggle they will be facing to get talent to appear, with other union members fearing to cross WGA picket lines.

So what is really going on here? How will this thing play out? In my opinion, Late Night programing will singlehandedly be the one to end this strike and put Hollywood back to work. I see it coming down like this: Leno and O’Brien will last about a week before they are absolutely exhausted from writing their own hour long shows. They make a personal, perhaps public, appeal to the execs and lawyers to get their writers back. NBC knows where its bread is buttered, and fearing the loss of their best programming the execs will be forced to re-enter negotiations with the writers and come to a quick settlement. Once NBC reaches a settlement, all the other networks will obviously have to as well.

Really, late night TV is the absolute best place to broker this solution. These programs rely heavily on writers so their hosts can just be funny (and not necessarily creative), but the programs aren’t necessarily “scripted” themselves, because of their variety aspects… a perfect storm.

Buying a Toothbrush

04_05_reachtoothbrush_lrg.jpgFor the past 3 days I have been trying to buy a toothbrush. I lost my current toothbrush when I was on vacation. It got lost at my sister’s house after I errantly left it on the bathroom counter, in full reach of the four girls all under the age of 8. After checking to make sure it wasn’t in the toilet (most such things end up there eventually), I gave up. I wasn’t planning on using it again even if I found it.

So the first night I returned from vacation, I got the toothbrush I always use, a “Reach” brand with gum massaging bristles. I put it in my cart, I purchased it, but while in a hurry to leave the store, left it on the checkstand along with my milk.

There’s 10 bucks I would never see again.

The next time I was at the store, I put it in my cart, but somehow it never made it to the checkout. I didn’t realize this until I was back home. I even checked my receipt to make sure I wasn’t charged (again) for a toothbrush I never received.

Third time’s a charm. Last night I finally successfully acquired my toothbrush, paid for it, and brought it home. I am very excited to use it today.

Small victories.

Mitt Romney: More than just a sound bite

Tomorrow, Iowa will be first in the nation to caucus for the next President of the United States. For those who’ve been paying attention, this race is certainly one of the most interesting in my lifetime.

The Republican camp has never been so wide open, with such a dizzying array of choices. Even the Democrat party, with presumptive nominee Hillary, is in a statistical photo finish.

I have been watching this race pretty closely since November of ’06. Having tired of our current president’s less appealing attributes, I got excited early at the prospect of a new CEO for the country. It was at this time that my uncle clued me in to Mitt Romney’s possible candidacy. At first I thought it was a fluke. How was this unknown supposed to make a run at the most powerful office against national names like Guiliani and Clinton?

After careful consideration of all candidates, both Republican and Democrat, today I am announcing the official WhiteEyebrows endorsement for the primaries in ’08 is: Mitt Romney.


Why do I support Mitt?

  1. Mitt is articulate. This was the first thing that impressed me, mostly because it is the foremost attribute lacking in our current president. Mitt is able to clearly articulate his positions, and reasons and justifications for those positions. For example, Mitt was the first (and only) candidate to offer a reason why he is against same-sex unions: he says “because marraige isn’t about adult rights, it’s about children’s rights, and that [he] thinks every child should grow up with a father and a mother.”
  2. Mitt is smart. He loves data. He loves bringing in experts, not just to tell him what to do (like Bush/Rumsfeld/Cheney), but to present every angle of the issue; to argue both for an against. This allows him to make decisions based on facts, rather than “gut”.
  3. Mitt is a true fiscal conservative. As a former CEO, venture capitalist, and turnaround artist, Mitt knows how to reign in spending. I heard an anecdote that when he took over the olympics, one of his first actions was to stop all expensive, catered staff lunches and only bring in pizza when necessary. Mitt will cut spending, duplication, and waste in the federal government like no other president. In one of his debates, he points out that more federal workers will retire in the next 8 years than ever before, offering a great opportunity to cut back on all these federal overlaps.
  4. Mitt’s got the right idea on social values. Mitt has been given a hard time on this, and the opposition will paint him as a flip flopper on abortion, especially. I’m talking about something more than an issues checklist (pro-life, judicial litmus test, same-sex marraige) though.  I think Mitt understands two things when it comes to social values, that his job as President will be to 1) promote the ideal, while 2) he works within the reality of the system as it exists today.
    1. Mitt is the only candidate who has said that he believes that we have a real education problem in the country, in that our children want to have babies out of wedlock. He wants to fix that problem.
    2. When asked in an interview why he doesn’t support a constitutional amendment banning abortion, he said that he believes the best next step in the national abortion debate is to repeal Roe v. Wade and allow states to legislate for themselves. He demonstrates a clear ability to understand the current state of government, and work toward the next steps on these social issues. (unlike Ron Paul who just wants to nuke 200 years of governmental evolution in his first 180 days)
  5. Mitt is young and energetic. If we elect McCain, he will be like 107 by the time he leaves office.
  6. Mitt understands the nuances of issues. As a moderate, this is super important to me. My problem with President Bush is that he will always do what he thinks is “right,” no matter the cost to the country. In my opinion, a president must do what is best for the nation, not necessarily what he thinks is right. For example, I don’t think the best thing for this country would be to outlaw abortion. I don’t think it is right, but there are certain times when it is the best available alternative (rape, incest, life of mother). Outlawing it would be more disastrous, in my opinion.
  7. Mitt is in it to win it. In 2007, Mitt went from 0% national recognition to leading the republicans in a national poll last week. Mitt will put up the best fight against any and all of the Democrats that could be nominated. He has no relatively little baggage, and is the republican’s best hope for keeping the White House.

In a phrase, I support Mitt because there is more to him than just a sound bite. He has well thought out positions and often what he says right after the sound bite is just as important and well thought out as the sound bite itself.

See for yourself at

The Impossible Dream

don-quixote.gifHappy New Year from the WhiteEyebrows Blog!!! Isn’t it a great thing to take a moment in time to look both back and forward; back at the year we left and forward to the excitement yet to come.

Recently, during my holiday break, the course of conversation led a family member and I to start contrasting the way in which we fundamentally view life and people. He expressed to me how he typically distrusts everyone and everything, and how everyone is out to “screw him,” as he said.

It made me, for once, sit back and think about how I fundamentally approach life and people. I discovered in that moment that I have a pretty unique (but crazy) world view. I think most people out there live their lives pretty cautiously, like my brother, hoping for the best but assuming the worst of everyone and everything.

I seem to relate more with Cervantes’ Don Quixote. I have never read the book, but I thoroughly enjoy the musical Man of La Mancha, which is roughly based on the book. (So for all you Cervantes scholars out there, you’ll have to forgive me as I butcher these concepts to my own ends here today.)

In the musical, Don Quixote is a (debatably) crazy man who thinks he is a knight sent “to sally forth into the world righting all wrongs.” He gets his kicks by fighting windmills (literally).

In the course of events, he comes across the whore (hmm… not the PC term i was looking for…) Aldonza, who he renames Dulcinea, the most beautiful virgin in all the land. (a designation most of her ..ahem.. customers find quite humorous) He insists on protecting the virtue and chastity of this woman, much to her annoyance.

So, I kind of relate with Don Quixote. I’m a basically optimistic person, who doesn’t just hope good things will happen in my life, I expect them to. I expect the best from every person. I sometimes look past the glaring imperfections in others (and myself) choosing to only see what I want to see, and not necessarily what is there in reality.

By the end of the movie, Quixote, having been confronted with reality and seeing life for what it really is, becomes old, frail and weak. Before he dies, though, surrounded by his friends, he sings the most beautiful song “The Impossible Dream.” In that cathartic moment, we realize that in the course of his lunacy, he had changed the life of everyone around him. They had actually become the good people he projected onto them. Then he dies.

2007 was a doozie of a year for me. Honestly, I weathered some of my most challenging trials ever in this year. I can’t say it was a bad year though. Even though some of my Quixotian lunacy was brought abruptly down to reality, I can’t say that I’ve given up on the Impossible Dream yet. In fact, as I move into a new year, I am more ready that ever pursue that Impossible Dream.

So the question is, what is The Impossible Dream? To me, it is the expectation that everything will work out in the end, and if it hasn’t worked out yet, it’s not the end yet. It is expecting the best of each other that I mentioned earlier. I think it’s also making a difference in the life of someone else. That is the real impossible dream, that because of my life, someone else’s life can be changed. That even after my life is over, I will live on in the minds and lives of those I have touched.

So my New Year’s Resolution: to dream the Impossible Dream. No biggie.

What are yours?