The Horse Race

Our election

This is a very scary scenario about one of the people we have running for president.  I couldn’t even watch it to the end: scary scenario

This is for the people who want to vote for him: read-this-first

Australia’s election

Australia’s election was held 5 days ago (when I started writing this yesterday) and they still only have 80% of the votes counted.  But what else I find incredible is that their federal election was held on Saturday 2 July 2016 to elect all 226 members of the 45th Parliament of Australia, after an extended eight-week official campaign period. Imagine how marvelous that would be.  Only two months of blather.  I turn off the news whenever they start talking about politics now. Used to be just who was winning on the latest polls, now it all of the horrible things the front runners have said and done. I can’t even stand to read the in-depth articles in the NY Times Magazine.

Speaking of which, was astounded to read the only article in last Sunday’s Times on the Australia’s election, australia-election and it was all the Horse Race statistics, no issues.  Had to google for issues: The economy, Health, Families, Education, Environment (Climate change! Renewable energy! Forests! Great Barrier Reef!), NBN (Australia’s new broadband network), Rural and regional affairs, Workplace relations1.  Imagine not arguing about guns2 or immigrants or a wall with Mexico (remember when the Berlin Wall came down?).


(These two countries have piqued my interest since meeting Aussies and Brits on my vacation.) Here are the comments from one of the Brits on Brexit:

What can I say? I believe there is only one word – a “shambles”!  What a mess! The divisions between people are enormous – our children are looking at job transfers out of the country. Poor things – it will come good – eventually, but not before we’re six foot under & they’ve got to live with the bigoted views of some of the older generation.  The young that did vote were vehemently anti-Brexit. I believe the whole campaign was badly handled & only glad I was out of the country for 3 weeks of it! Wondering where to go hide now!!

And another friend said to read this: when-fear-triumphs-over-evidence

Our Wild West

A black man (with a concealed carry permit), driving with his girlfriend, was stopped for a broken tail light in Minnesota, and was shot multiple times when he reached for his wallet to show his license. In Baton Rouge, Louisiana a black man protestwas repeatedly shot by police officers after he was pinned to the ground. Because of this there was a peaceful demonstration against violence in Dallas, and a sniper, a black Afghanistan veteran, killed five white policemen and injured seven others, so the police sent in a robot with a bomb and blew him up.  (Photo from the New York Times: People rallied in Dallas to protest the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. Laura Buckman/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images)

policeWhat can I say.  Between 2000 and 2011, 4,518 people in the US have been killed by police officers.3 According to Wikipedia,

Police in Great Britain… are not routinely armed. Fatal shootings of police are extremely rare; there were three in England and Wales in the eleven-year period from 2000/01 to 2010/11.

Yes, Britain has only 20% of the population of the US, but 20% of 4,518 is 915, not 3.  Or to reverse that, 5 times 3 is 15, not 4,518!(Second photo also from the New York Times: Dallas police officers responded after shots were fired during a protest on Thursday. Smiley N. Pool/The Dallas Morning News, via Associated Press)

2A person [in Australia] who wants to possess or use a firearm must have a firearm licence. Licence holders must be at least 18 years of age, have a “genuine reason” for holding a firearm licence and must not be a “prohibited person”. All firearms in Australia must be registered by serial number to the owner, who holds a firearms licence, except that firearms manufactured before 1 January 1901 may not need to be registered in some states. The firearm owner must have secure storage for the firearm. Firearms dealers must be over 21 years of age and hold a dealer’s licence, and dealers’ employees must be vetted by the police. “Prohibited persons” cannot be employed by dealers. Besides other requirements, dealers must ensure that the purchaser of a firearm holds a firearm licence, must maintain a register and must notify police of each transaction.


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One Response to “The Horse Race”

  1. notesfromthewest Says:

    A friend sent me this link: Makes Britain sound rather like a dystopian scifi novel.

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