November 7, 2012
I'm writing this Monday evening and the US elections are taking place on Tuesday. By the time you read this, the elections will be over, but it is not mandatory that we have election results immediately. In the past, it was always a laborious task to count the votes but we expect immediate results in this, the electronic age.
I'm not going to talk about politics or who the next President is going to be. I don't know. We probably won't know as you read this, but I might be surprised and there may be a winner declared, although that didn't stop a fiasco in the past. So, let's look at something else.
The salary of the US President is $400,000 per year. There are then some monies set aside for personal expenses, which many of us would consider as salary, but isn't quite so for this position. Of course, there are a variety of perks and many additional expenses that go along with the position.
There are two major candidates for the job as I write this. According to the New York Times, Barack Obama and Democratic Party raised $934 million and spent $852.9 million on the race. Mitt Romney and the Republican Party raised $881.8 million and spent $752.3 million. That means that the two men raised $1,825,800,000 and spent $1,605,200,000. I wrote those numbers out just so we could see the sums in total.
It is nice to know that Obama has $134.7 million left in his war chest while Romney has $193.3 million left.
According to this site, there was at least another $65 million spent on TV with funds from the super PACs. I have no idea how I would find figures for all the monies spent for other candidates and issues that were decided on November 6. I know that our electoral process is expensive, and it seems to me that quite a bit of money has been used for this event.
I have tried to find understandable data about how much money is generated by sector for many of our industries here. However, I found chart after chart of data with a picture worth 1000 words and all that, but no discernible or understandable numbers for me to share with you. I can find numbers in the billions and some in the trillions, but I am unsure what they represent and rather than mislead or misinform, I will just tell you that the US has a lot of money floating in and out and round and round. There is far more money in the system than that spent by these two candidates on their bid for a $400,000 job.
Even so, as I look at the figures of how much was raised and how much was spent, I am appalled. Perhaps I'm just not used to looking at such large numbers since my bank account doesn't have anything that looks like this.
However, as a comparison, the recent hurricane Sandy is projected to cost about $60 billion. That is with $10 billion in property damage and between $10 and 30 billion in lost revenue. These figures come from TIME Business & Money.
So the presidential campaign cost less than 1/5 of the damage done in just a couple days of wind and rain. Maybe it is a bargain.
Of course, the cost of the presidential race isn't the only money spent on politics. I have no idea how much money was spent by other candidates as they sought the Republican Party nomination, but that is money that is simply gone. There are many other positions up for election as well as issues to be decided. And there is the cost of actually holding the elections to be factored in. So when all is said and done, the price of the elections on Tuesday came closer to the property damage done by Sandy. Somehow, this isn't making me feel better.
Do you have any idea how much it costs in your area to get somebody elected? This has been said to be the most expensive election we have ever held. Do you think we are getting our money's worth on this? Was there something more important, something more pressing that could have benefitted from all these funds?
Should there be a limit on how much any candidate can spend on a campaign? Does limiting donations do anything to limit the spending?
Living under the best politicians money can buy,
Isn't it worth $1 a month to you to keep RGQ in your mailbox? Please click the link and direct your contribution to keep RGQ going.Today's Quotes
Democracy is welcoming people from other lands, and giving them something to hold onto - usually a mop or a leaf blower. - Johnny Carson
A person usually has two reasons for doing something: a good reason and the real reason. - Thomas Carlyle
Clap for the Wolf-Man
The Wolf Man comes home one day from a long day at the office.
"How was work, dear?" his wife asks.
"Listen! I don't want to talk about work!" he shouts.
"Okay. Would you like to sit down and eat a nice home cooked meal?" she asks nicely.
"Listen!" he shouts again. "I'm not hungry! I don't wanna eat! All right! Is that all right with you? Can I come home from work and just do my own thing without you forcing food down my throat? Huh?"
At this moment, the wolf man started growling and throwing things around the apartment in a mad rage. Looking out the window, his wife sees a full moon and says to herself, "Well, I guess it's that time of the month."
Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
I once had a rose named after me and I was very flattered. But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalogue: no good in a bed, but fine up against a wall. - all from Eleanor Roosevelt, First Lady of the United States, who died on this day in 1962
Subscribe to reallygoodquotes Powered by groups.yahoo.comImage'n That!
That Explains The Service
My Most Embarrassing Moment
My Scariest Moment15 Minutes Of Fame
Click here for guidelines on 15 Minutes submissions
Speak right up!
I spent the whole day trying to get my computer to cooperate.
It didn't. Luckily I had most of the issue done ahead of time. I just didn't get time to write my own article.
Here's your quiz:
Did I just hear loud applause?
Or was it cheering?
Computers - Devices That Can Screw You Up Faster Than Ever
Cliff (the High-Tech Redneck who doesn't rate a fancy 'signature pic')Kirsten's Krazy Kaleidoscope
"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth."
~ Baha'u'llah ~
Today (although it will be be yesterday by the time you ready this) is Election Day in the United States. This means two things. First, we will know whether the reins of the White House are changing hands, and secondly, all of the annoying political posts on Facebook will hopefully come to an end.
As much as I have been feeling somewhat annoyed by all of the election stuff, reading today's statuses about people lining up to vote has me feeling a touch of nostalgia. It reminds of one particular election I voted in, back in 1994.
As most of you know, I am a transplanted South African. I traveled a lot as a child, but between the ages of 10 and 21 I lived in Johannesburg and Cape Town, and in that time a lot happened in South Africa. When the Apartheid laws were still in effect, I saw people being rounded up and driven away in police vans simply for being in the "wrong" neighbourhood without a pass. I had to make sure I used public restrooms designated for white people. There were no black kids in my school until my senior year, when two black sisters tentatively joined the student body. Interracial marriages were against the law.
I hated the segregation, and so did just about everyone I knew. We breathed a collective sigh of cautious relief when the Apartheid laws started being dismantled, one by one. By the time I went to University, all South Africans had equal rights in most respects. Everyone used the same public restrooms, and I sat shoulder to shoulder with people from all walks of life in my university classes. On a momentous day, I was part of a crowd of thousands who watched Nelson Mandela walk to freedom.
As all of these changes were happening, I was aware that I was watching history unfold before my eyes. Even though I was young and foolish, I had the wisdom to know that I was a part of South Africa's most exciting era, and I stored up as many memories as I could, knowing that on days like today, I would look back and feel proud and honoured to have been a part of it all.
The last vestige of Apartheid crumbled on April 27, 1994, when South Africa held its first democratic election in which all South Africans had the right to vote. I got up early that morning and went with my parents to our voting station. We parked the car and walked to the back of the line. It turned out to be a long walk because the line was so long.
We were in that line for eight hours, which might sound like a drag, but it wasn't. It was absolutely festive. The atmosphere was phenomenal. Everyone was celebrating, everyone was excited. During our eight hours in line, we were invited to take part in impromptu barbecues set up by complete strangers who had thought to bring along portable grills. There was actual dancing in the streets. Being in that line was like being at an eight-hour party.
Everyone was excited, you see. It didn't matter who was voting for whom. It just mattered that we were all together, united in the interests of our country.
Do you vote in your nation's elections? Would you line up for eight hours to be part of an historic event?
Looks like Lucille is still in line waiting to vote! Hopefully she'll be back Friday.
Odds and Ends - Random - Did you know that New York City started as a Dutch colony called New Amsterdam; that 180 million pounds of bombs were dropped on Iraq during the first Gulf War in 1991l; that Cleopatra married two of her brothers; that matador is Spanish for 'killer'; that Quango is an acronym for Quasi Autonomous Non-Governmental Organization; that Shakespeare invented the words summit, torture, and rant; that the highest recorded temperature on earth was 58°C (136.4 F) in Libya on Sep 13, 1922; that Leonardo Da Vinci invented the scissors; that the chance of being born on a leap day is one in 1,461; and that strawberries are the only fruit with seeds on the outside. Yum!
Thanks for your limericks. Let's try this one -
I once saw a mouse in my bed...
Hints: Here's a great new rhyming/composition tool. http://www.writerhymes.com/
There's also a great rhyming dictionary at http://www.rhymezone.com/
Limerick rules. http://freespace.virgin.net/merrick.sheldon/limerickrules.htm
I once met a man from LaCrosse.....
He rode on a big yellow hoss.....
He looked kinda funny.....
On the hoss he named "Honey".....
When he'd break out his dental floss.
I once met a man from LaCrosse.....
He really thought he was boss.....
Of his kids and his wife.....
He caused them much strife.....
Till they stepped out of his life.
- SkeeterReader Comments
Perhaps Bob of the North could understand and show some respect if he were writing in German or Japanese. - Tom of the South
Some people have pretty automatic reactions, like a Beaver hearing a leaky dam. Seeing a boy in a girl costume sets off two kinds of people. Bisexuals who are struggling to be straight are upset by anyone who happily gives up and has a good time being their self. Some of those ranters have gotten into pulpits, and passed on the compulsion to others who are merely religious, but those seldom have quite as much zing to them.
When I was about 4, my parents dressed me as an old lady for Halloween. They told me to walk more like a lady, and, not having any idea what they meant, I held my hips rigid instead, which got a laugh, but no further instructions. It seemed to have zero effect on my later development, apart from the candy. The next year, my dad borrowed a clear face shield so I could go as a space man. Budding nerd that I was, I absolutely refused to be seen in a non-airtight looking space suit, so I think I wound up as a tramp. As a young adult, my own policy was to only start my costume after noon on the 31st, and only spend four 2012 dollars max for material. Imagination works better that way. I hot-glued a couple of thrift-store dresses into a wizard costume that got used by myself and then by a gay friend for many years, with various headgear and accessories. - Bob of the North
She did the right thing. It was Halloween. He was not asking to wear a dress to school.
The other moms need to mind their own business and worry about what is going on in their own homes!
That is one of the things that is so wrong with this world. People need to spend way more time worrying about themselves and how they conduct their lives and leave others to do the same. - Vicki
Years ago when my two boys were 7 and 5 years of age, they saw the baby-sitter putting some makeup on and asked her to put some makeup on them. My 10-year old daughter assisted the baby-sitter, and an hour later they were all made up complete with dresses, shoes, makeup, hair in pigtails with butterfly clips in their hair. They were excited to show their mom and me the results of their effort. I came home from work and laughed my head off. It was an awesome job, and they looked so "pretty". Then mom came home... and she waas livid, to say the least. "Boys should not dress up as girls", she said, "Go take a bath right now." The sitter left in tears, but I gave her a generous tip and told her not to worry about it. I still have a picture of the 2 boys all dressed up. I would post the picture, but the boys are bigger than me now. They are 35 and 33, and are both tough men with families of their own. In fact, my older son and his family are coming for a visit this week. My younger son and his wife are Harley riders and hang out with a pretty rough crowd. Looks like mom didn't have to worry after all. LDO
The problem with the costume was No Mask! I couldn't count how many good sized boy kids have come to my door trick or treating in feminine costumes - witches and cheerleaders and teen boys in Mom clothes - all with faces covered by masks. And we laugh when a boy kid has done a spectacular job of creating such garb. Around our area, few kids have purchased costumes. - Nancy L in Ohio
All I have to say is,"Real men can wear pink". I've got a short sleeve and a long sleeve pink shirt; and I'm not the only man I know who has a pink shirt. - Skeeter
Okay--I have three strikes here. I'm female, grew up in a conservative home in the 60's, and, God help me, spent six years working at a store that shall not be named (but I'm sure you know who it is if you read Cliff's article). There are just some things that should not be acceptable in public and I don't care what celebrity wears them. Tube tops on someone who was never meant for a lack of proper support garments, Daisy Duke shorts on any woman and skimply little exercise shorts on any man. spandex on most people, pants that are too big to be worn around what ever portion of the anatomy they should be, skimpy tops on women who aren't, and so on and so on. I don't wear anything that I think would need to be banned, and I don't care what others think as long as I'm clean, covered, and in decent clothing. I live in jeans and loose tops, sweaters, sweatshirts. My daughters wear the tight stuff, but they are still built for it, and it's nothing I'd be ashamed to be seen with them wearing in public. My boys are the same. It's all in what you're taught as a child, and modesty isn't anymore. And, BTW, those pictures of people in WalMart are for real, I've seen them, and worse!! And yes, ties are stupid and really need to go out of fashion. - Ruth in WA
I think droopy jeans and those skimpy tops and lowered jeans that allow belly buttons to show are awful. But my favorite why-do-they-wear-that is teens who dash out the door on a winter morning not wearing a coat and stand at the bus stop and are obviously freezing. Or have a coat on but not zipped up. And never put a hat on. Same result. Right now, I have a problem with almost all stores featuring coats that look like rags covered in bling that are waist length and obviously for the under 25 female. Also expensive. I spent a month looking for a good, water repellant, warm, practical coat for a senior female at a decent price. HA! Found it in a catalog. If retail stores are suffering these days, maybe it's because they all buy into the idea that everybody wants to look 25, and nobody over 40 buys clothes. Chain stores just don't carry styles that feel comfortable for someone over 70 to wear. But we spend money, too, and don't need Dad to co-sign or pay for the credit card used.
Don't know about women in southern Ohio, but up here near the lake, it's incredible how many have the world's skinniest legs! Toothpicks with fabric rolled around them! The shape of people seems to be changing. Men have butts. Time was when a man's trousers hung loose in back as they walked. Computer cubicles apparently have reshaped the man! - Nancy L in Ohio
Disclaimer- All quotes printed in this publication are believed to be accurately attributed, but no guarantees are made that some incorrectly attributed, or even outright false quotes won't get in here from time to time. I assure readers that I will do my best to weed out incorrect quotes, and will print a retraction as soon as I become aware of any errors.
Click here to see the archives of past issues, or go to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/reallygoodquotes/messages. If you run across something really outstanding when perusing the archives, I'd appreciate it if you'd mail me at TheBestOfRGQ@... and point it out to me. I'm in the process of compiling an e-book called, not surprisingly, The Best of RGQ, and I'd like to hear from you which pieces impacted you the most.
Questions? Comments? Want to contribute a joke or a quote or an image? Feel free to e-mail at reallygoodquotes@.... We'd love to hear from you! We'll even publish your comments, if they make any sense!
We can't imagine why you'd want to, but if you choose to unsubscribe, please send a blank e-mail to email@example.com. Should you choose to unsubscribe, please e-mail us and tell us why. We listen to what people say, even if they're leaving us.
Yahoo! Inc., 701 First Avenue, Sunnyvale, CA 94089