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In Hindsight


Recently, as in last Friday someone reminded me of the old issues from last year which is that many people think the convention system in the state of Virginia for Republicans hurts the party. Other people like it. Oh well.

But the crux of the issue is that the people who want to get rid of it A.) Wanted a different slate of candidates for the major party positions B.) Don’t like traveling, eheh.

There really isn’t anything like the experience of a convention, it’s kind of a madcap thing that most people should experience. And this blogger isn’t talking about your tame county convention where everyone is from in town, but we’re talking about a state or national convention where all kinds of shenanigans take place.

The thing is, these kinds of conversations are usually had after a loss. If the GOP slate had won then no one would bother to discuss the issue, but since the GOP slate didn’t win with Obenshain only coming close, the conversation still comes up. The fact of the matter this type of discussion only leads to the idea that Bill Bolling would have won a primary and he probably would NOT. Ken Cuccinelli had a better ground game and would have won a primary, Bolling would have been angry, all other issues would have been the same once that fact is accepted.

Beyond this point, the other candidates on the slate – well who knows – this blogger can’t judge their volunteer base but Obenshain had a long long  family history in the state. It’s possible Rob Bell would have been up for Attorney General.

Does it matter now? Not really. It turns out there are two Democratic parties in Virginia, one run by Virginians which apparently spawned those in members of the state senate and house and one that spawned Terry McAuliffe – turns out they don’t agree with each other.

The same end can be reached by different means.

There is no point in fuming over the past that can’t be changed.

 

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And that One Tax Scandal


So you are probably wondering what ever happened with the IRS tax scandal centered around the targeting of Tea Party groups. Well, you don’t have to wonder anymore.

Ex-IRS official Lois Lerner is living the life of a private citizen at her more-than $2.4 million property in Bethesda, Md. while Republicans consider holding a House floor vote to hold her in contempt of Congress.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee voted 21-12 to hold Lerner in contempt last week after she waived her Fifth Amendment rights but continued to stonewall the committees investigation into the IRS targeting scandal. The measure was opposed by all 12 of the committee’s Democrats, including Ranking Member Rep. Elijah Cummings, whose staff requested information from the IRS about a conservative non-profit applicant group under agency scrutiny.

So basically, Lois Lerner has lost her career at the IRS due to the scandal and now is in the early stages of being held in contempt by Congress. What boggles the mind is why anyone would throw away their career for a political season that only lasts eight years at most? Think about it, she has damaged her career and what happens to those who benefited from her actions? NOTHING.
In the meantime, this woman becomes an example as she is currently being described as someone who has stonewalled an investigation.
Also -
One year ago this day was the terrorist attack on the Boston marathon.
Keep Calm and Love Boston

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Friday Fry Up with Cherry Blossoms


It’s Friday and the weather is beautiful in DC today, but there is nothing calm about this week which shall always be remembered in my head as the week I got conned into watching the fireworks over the Potomac for the festival.

Sebelius’ Exit,

Denial is not just a river in Egypt, this article shows total denial as well. She is being pushed out as a result of the problems with the Obamacare launch and this sort of switching out of staff, is typical in private companies and organizations when a major blunder has occurred. The Obamacare deadline has just barely passed.

The above linked to article shocked this blogger last night, how can someone be so oblivious to the truth? And why highlight a negative event? In fact, there was a flub today even in the process of her resignation.

Colbert to the Show

David Letterman is out and Stephen Colbert is in, so you can imagine there are plenty of people who will miss his show which flays conservatives. And then there are the people who won’t miss it, because so often it is used as a source of news for people who don’t watch the real news. Or even read it. My question is what the heck will his show be like in place of David Letterman? He’s taking his whole Colbert Report team.

Cherry Blossom Festival

Tonight is the Cherry Blossom Ball and a young woman will be crowned the Cherry Blossom Festival Queen 2014. Good Luck Ladies! So this year, I had to get to a friend’s birthday party on the waterfront which involved being stuck in traffic related to the festival. One good thing happened, I got stuck watching the festival fireworks.

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That’s all, have a good week-end, don’t let the extra tourists or Cherry Blossom allergies drive you crazy.

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Change Up


If you weren’t aware because of the national news about the stabbings in Pennsylvania and maybe the busy-ness of your  life in general- you may have missed that a candidate who is NOT a Democrat quietly won a seat on the Arlington County Board.

John Vihstadt has quietly changed the game in Arlington by running as an Independent with a coalition of Democrats, Green party activists and Republicans supporting him. Mr. Vihstadt has over a decade of experience on local school boards and committees where he served Arlington. He also chose  a platform of fiscal conservatism which is fine since the county board is about budget matters for the most part.

ARLNow photo from the victory party

ARLNow photo from the victory party

But you’re probably asking how did this happen?? Arlington DIDN’T happily elect a DEMOCRAT?? Right, so the Arlington County Board has been proposing projects that drove people crazy – they wanted to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on an AQUATIC center and a terrible Trolley thing that would ruin traffic while not being really functional. By the time it was over Arlington citizens would be stuck with HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS in costs. At the same time, the local fire department couldn’t get money for a new ladder. Priorities, anyone?

Taxes are already high and John promised to focus on what counts for the budgets  – schools, their needs for the children and the really important stuff – like a ladder for the local fire department. At his victory party which was attended by well known Democrat Libby Garvey and Commonwealth Attorney Theophani Stamos -who both happily supported John – he made a point of reiterating the fact that he is going to represent all parties and invested interests in Arlington, not just one group.

Some of the wisdom here is in what Aaron Wildavsky proved with his work, you can win without a coalition – maybe – but you can’t govern without one. And John Vihstadt is clearly about all the different groups that supported him.

Deborah with City Councilman John Vihstadt

 

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Tuesday Things


Today

Get out and vote. It’s time to elect the next member of the city council in Arlington! Do it! Do it!

Meanwhile, there were some very interesting events last week  -

Gun Debate

Unfortunately, there was the shooting at Fort Hood which restarted the gun debate for some people. Anyone could have guessed gun ban advocates would get up on the issue again, but the truth is gun rights were settled last year, too many people in both parties and independently want the right to bear arms.

President George W. Bush Unveils New Paintings

Former President Bush is going to shed some light, so to speak on his paintings and let the rest of the world see some of them. It is interesting that these works are of world leaders.

Kevin Spacey

Cats out of the bag, Kevin Spacey is probably not a Republican, but he’s not a flaming liberal either if you read this article on Venezuela.

 

Presidential Races

Huh, so now that Chris Christie is out of the presidential race for 2016, it looks like Jeb Bush a potential contender, if he wants to do it. I’m not convinced he wants to run. Additionally, the party is just really different from the party Jeb could run in and win.

 

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How I Met Your Mother Finale


Personally, this blogger was a bit conflicted on the finale of HIMYM, the ending quite frankly disappointed viewers because it was so contorted. (Spoiler alert) The show ends with an old Ted going off to pursue Robin whom he always loved but could not settle with in his younger years. There are many reasons it might not work, but frankly the ending of the show is far truer to life than most people care to see for entertainment. A Friends type ending would be preferable.

But the fact of the matter is that the show was never above showing viewer’s the ugly side of reality, for example Robin goes from doing well professionally to having her life be sort of a mess during one story arc in the seasons.

This blogger would have to argue that it is conceivable that Ted and Robin will work out in the next season of their life if the show continued, or that they both figured it out with other people. Because what the show is really getting at is that most people hope to have a frolicking good time with friends in their 20′s and or 30′s get married then ride into the sunset to live together for decades.

But that’s not life, life is fluid, people happily marry and their partners die from illness, people leave each other-sometimes because of illness, divorces happen and sometimes your best relationships come way way later than you would ever plan for them to arrive. Some people get two big loves in life, others never get even one. If you live a long life, chances are you will find yourself in more than one major LTR.

The point is the ending of HIYM was more about the complicated nature of life and the ride than a funny sit com.  Still not everyone agrees -

From Christopher Bowen, a local attorney:

Thought of the day: The message of the HIMYM finale was that F. Scott Fitzgerald was wrong in The Great Gatsby. That is to say, HIMYM says that no matter how much time or how many life events (kids, marriages, divorces, career changes, moves) occur, you can and should pursue the one person who you think you love and think you should have gotten, and doing so is to be admired. Indeed, HIMYM says that the exact same actions that almost worked the first time when you were 25 (uninvited dropping-in with a purloined plastic french horn) should be tried again, when you’re 49. The message of The Great Gatsby, in contrast, is that life moves on, and you’ll only destroy yourself trying to re-create moments and opportunities that belong to the past. Age and passage of time matter are fate in Gatsby; they are irrelevant in HIMYM.

The Great Gatsby is more accurate. Even a moment’s consideration of the premise of the HIMYM finale demonstrates the futility of Ted’s quest to woo Robin: Robin doesn’t want and has never wanted kids; is she suddenly going to move to Long Island and be step-mother to Ted’s two teenagers, especially now that Robin is in her late 40s and at the height of her career? If it didn’t work out between Ted and Robin back in 2005, why should the audience assume a happy ending in 2030, when both parties have a 747-amount of baggage? Despite being a comedy, therefore, HIMYM leaves the viewer with a feeling of Groundhog Day-esque dread that Ted is perpetually doomed to be fruitlessly pursue Robin until his death.

The HIMYM finale and the Great Gatsby do share one trait – the belief in the permanence of character and the unavailability of redemption. Barney cannot commit himself to a woman romantically, even one as much of a match as Robin. Ted will always obsess over Robin, despite a (much- and suspiciously-delayed) marriage to a woman with whom he is a perfect match. This is just as Gatsby cannot overcome his past class background and Daisy cannot or will not overcome her need for social acceptability and stability to escape Tom Buchanan, who, although a brute, provides both. Thus, what makes both HIMYM and The Great Gatsby unpleasant in the end is that they both leave us feeling depressed — who you are today is who you’ll be forever, no matter how much you try otherwise. This works for The Great Gatsby, because it’s a tragedy. It’s less welcome with HIMYM, because it’s supposedly a comedy, yet ends with a budding romance that everyone suspects will fail as it did in the past.

It’s arguable that Ted and Robin might change or have changed enough to make a go of a relationship, much like Nick Carraway changed in The Great Gatsby, but it’s also true that some of these characters as real people might never change at all.

If all of this is not enough, someone made an ending for HIMYM that is what most people would have wanted – click here.

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Lima Lounge – Culture Post


So every once in awhile, this blogger does a full culture post. This past week-end, Lima Lounge had their 8th anniversary. Gotta say it’s a nice place and when they put on a party to celebrate, they go all the way. Open bar, loads of sushi and fresh fruit and a very nice as well as sophisticated atmosphere.

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That is just a partial picture of the sushi bar at VETRO – the VIP lounge at the top of Lima Lounge this past week-end. You can see the signature flowers on top of the sushi tower there in the right hand corner of the picture.

Deborah at Lima Lounge Cropped with Balloons

The entire VIP room was filled with green balloons in the colors of Lima Lounge – silver and green. Someone said it looked like prom. Yes, maybe a little bit.  If you consider that a lot of clubs come and go in the DC area it’s pretty great that Lima has kept doing well. But they offer a diversified lounge, you can get an upscale dinner upstairs, sit and drink on the ground level or dance to club music on the lower level.

As for the crowd, it tends to be a mix of internationals and U.S. citizens in the professional world.

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Monday Mania – With an Apology


This post is going to hit a few different topic areas – with an apology first.

Sorry Washington Wizards 

This is a public apology. On Friday night, I was at The Hamilton with some political friends. While we were seated in the bar, a group of men were seated for dinner at a long table right by us. One of my friends said “look at those guys, they must be the Wizards.” And I said no they couldn’t be, to which, my friends challenged me to go ask the group of men where they were from – and I obliged.

Unfortunately, when I got to the table and asked one of the guys if they were an athletic team, he said “yes” and then I said are you a college team? Where are you from?? And the guy got insulted and said “we’re the Wizards.” I quickly backed myself up and said very loudly to the whole team  ”well I just wanted to say ‘Hi’ to you” and then waved at the guys. They all happily waved back and some said “Hi” to me like the school teacher looking woman that I am, but I could tell they were offended. Later they were asking their waitress who I was and she told them I meant no harm – thankfully.

And I didn’t – I don’t know anything about basketball, I haven’t been to a Wizards game in ages and certainly can’t name many current NBA players beyond Kobe Bryant and that Kris Humphries guy because he married Kim Kardashian.

Now I’m the egghead who can name Senators, Presidents and a bit about the entertainment industry, better to ask me about literature,communications or marketing trends.

But sports, heck no! I know little about it. Don’t take it personal.

One International Bit

Um, welcome to the cold war part two is no longer a joke, Putin apparently wants Finland according to a former adviser. Of course he wants Finland and the Ukraine and anything else the Russians once had – but they do make beautiful music. (sigh). Next he will want Alaska back!

North Korea, uh, apparently they’re getting really uppity for real now. It’s not a good time to cut back the Navy, that would be inviting an attack as you might say.

National

Uh oh, someone has been sending out ballots in California that are pre-marked for the Democratic party. Naughty, naughty!

Let’s get local.

This apartment building in DC is offering a communal dog. 

It’s a concern only because dogs tend to need someone to be connected to or spend time with regularly, it could be weird for a dog to just be with everyone or anyone in a building. My guess is this dog will has a keeper that will look after it. Check it out.

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And Now for Something Entirely Different


Let’s talk Hollywood, culture and marketing for a minute. In Hollywood, even bad news being posted about a celebrity is good news for them, because they want to be talked about and known – it’s the confusion of the industry.

Case in point, Gwyneth Paltrow has been insulting people for two decades now – she started with Sharon Stone in the 1990′s. It was a burgeoning actress insulting a well known actress, common in Hollywood at the time and still common. Moreover, the media has gotten a kick out of making fun of her over the years for her “personality challenges” as they have been dubbed.

But now it’s just gotten weird, she’s now insulting her fan base and don’t kid yourself, this was an intentional sort of bragging and insulting of her fan base when she recently put down working women. See article. 

The quote that’s driving people crazy after her calling her divorce “conscious uncoupling.”

When you’re shooting a movie, they’re like, “We need you to go to Wisconsin for two weeks,” and then you work 14 hours a day and that part of it is very difficult. I think to have a regular job and be a mom is not as, of course there are challenges, but it’s not like being on set.

Really?

One cannot imagine that any pr person with any marketing background would have instructed her to make such comments. She has however crossed that weird line where she is insulting fans.

And it’s not “conscious uncoupling”, it’s called a divorce, if you can’t call it by it’s real name, maybe you aren’t ready to deal with getting one.

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Friday Fry-Up


It’s the week-end, lap it up!

Russia, the U.S. and the Ukraine

So Obama is strongly urging the Russian troops to move away from the Ukrainian border. Does that work? Like the U.S. isn’t respected anymore abroad so what weight do those comments have, especially after a Russian journalist flat out heckled the president?

And the U.N. let Russia vote down a resolution on the issue, oooooh and expanding bases in South America for the Russians through Argentina. Great.

Saving Money, Saving Space 

You’ve probably played around with fonts and spacing on papers in college or maybe at your job in order to save space or use up space. Well, a 14 yr old figured out how to save the government hundreds of millions of dollars by changing the font used for printed documents.

Cheaper than Amtrak 

This luxury bus line will still be $90 cheaper than an Amtrak ride to New York.

Entertainment

E! Network is running episodes of the show Chrisley Knows Best from USA Network. This blogger still doesn’t put anything from E! on her schedule, but Todd Chrisley is one funny Daddy/Mommy millionaire. He really is a post-modern Dad with traits traditionally exuded by a Dad or Mom in one person. He’s just funny.

Also Gmyneth Paltrow might be done between the ridiculous “Conscious Uncoupling” statements and this bit of lunacy.

Happy Week-end!

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