That's Saying Something

Only a man who carries a gun needs one - Harry Carey in Angel and the Badman

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Possible Republican Vice Presidential Data

The 3rd republican debates are tonight.  There are still so many candidates that there are 2 debates.  There are 10 candidates in the main debate,  4 in the debate that precedes it and 1 candidate, Jim Gilmore who has not been in a debate since August.

I have been following these debates and the events leading up to them for some time now.  Last week the DesMoines register/Bloomberg poll  came out for Iowa.  I reviewed the data from the poll and am using that data to reflect if any of the 15 candidates currently running might appeal as possible VP contenders in 2016 if they do not get the nomination for the top spot.  Here's what I think.

There were several questions on the poll regarding favor-ability issues such as who would you never support or name up to 3 candidates who you want to drop out of the race.  I have decided that anyone who was in the top 5 in any of those lists would probably not make an attractive VP option because if prospective voters want him or her out of the race now they won't want that person to be just a heartbeat away from the presidency.

The 7 candidates with top marks at being unfavorable or unwanted are Lindsey Graham, George Pataki, Jim Gilmore, Chris Christie,  Jeb Bush, Rand Paul, and Donald Trump.  That list may be a little surprising since Trump came in 2nd in the poll for who people would choose as President with 19% and Bush and Paul picked up 5% of support each tying them for 5th.  The problem is that more people wanted those 7 to drop out than those picking them first.  Heres a quick snap shot

Candidate (% picked 1st/% wants to drop out)
Trump (19/25)
Bush  (5/22)
Paul (5/14)
Christie (1/19)
Gilmore (0/15)
Pataki (0/21)
Graham  (0/22)

The second thing I tried to do was to look at who people were willing to support as President even if they were not currently choosing them first or second.  This poll made it easy for me, as respondents were asked to mark if they could ever vote for candidate and were told not to choose anyone they had previously picked as their first or second choice.  The people who are doing best in this category are also the ones not getting a lot  of support for the top spot.  I think this is a great indicator of who people might be comfortable with on the bottom of a presidential ticket.  The top 5 candidates ever % are Mike Huckabee (60%),  Marco Rubio & Bobby Jindal (55%) and Rick Santorum and Carly Fiorina 53 %

If you take The Ever % and the subtract the never % and then add the undecided % to it the top 7 candidates are

Candidate (E-N+U%)
Rubio (40%)
Fiorina (36%)
Carson (34%)
Jindal (33%)
Huckabee (32%)
Cruz (27 %)
Santorum (20%)

So I believe the polling data can speak to who of the 15 candidates might be perceived as possible vp contenders next summer.  Of course it's only October and the poll was only based on potential Iowa caucus voters.  I hope I hope to delve into future polls to see if my vp hunches are accurate.

Oh and if you added 7 and 7 and got 14 and could not figure out the one candidateof the 15 remaining that I did not mention,  it was Ohio Governor John  Kasich.  4% chose Kasicj 1st or 2nd in the poll, 36 % stated they  would possibly (ever) vote for him and   45 % of respondents said they would never vote for Kasich.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Everybody's Little Book of Everyday Prayers - A Review

A few weeks ago I received a copy of Everybody's Little Book of Everyday Prayers by Cynthia MacGregor.  I won the book on Library Thing as part of their Early Reviewers program.  The caveat of receiving the book for free is to review it.

The book is made up of several sections: an introduction,  general prayers,  prayers for specific occasions, and prayers of supplication and thanks. In the introduction, MacGregor shares her ambitious goal of the book ...

"This book is for you - whatever your religious affiliation- even if you have no religious affiliation at all. This book is for you, whether you're a Protestant, Jew or Catholic,   a member of one of the many religions of the world or an unaffiliated believer ... This book is for you.

Like I said,  very ambitious.  The problem is the book was not for me.  Nor would I feel good about anyone using it as a guide to praying to God.  I feel bad writing this and wish I felt the book had any utility.  MacGregor is very clear in her introduction that any and all of her prayers could be fashioned to fit someone's specific belief.  This unfortunately is not true for me.

A prayer from the general prayers section offers a good example of what I mean...

O God you know what is best for me.  You know what is in my heart and what are the things I want in this life for me, for those I love and for this very world itself.  If it is your will, I pray that my wishes and prayers will be granted, but if it is not Your will, then help me to accept my lot in life and Your plan for me, those I hold dear and for all the others whom I pray.

So what's wrong with that, you might ask? Nothing,  that part is fine. It continues for a few more lines that I mostly agree with and then  ...

and may I never rely too heavily on You, but that remember that it is up to me to do whatever I can toward gaining my goals.


Didn't you just say the God knows what is best and knows what is in my heart? To me that means that God is all good and all knowing.  How can we EVER rely too heavily on an all good and all knowing God?

In another prayer in the same section she says   ...

"It is said that God created man in His image, yet how dare we assume that we are in any way God-Like?"

The thing is the person who said God was created in His image is actually God, the person this prayer is intended for.

This brings up one of the main issues I have against this book.   In order to appeal to everyone it loses sight of the main reason we pray.  We need God's help.  The main reason we need God's help is because we are sinners.  There is no mention of sin in this book, sure it talks about temptation and faults but not sin.  There is no mention of Jesus or a Messiah in this book the Catholics and Christians this book was intended for believe in Jesus and the Jews this book was intended for are still waiting for a Messiah.  When Holidays are mentioned Easter and Passover are not mentioned,  Christmas is only mentioned in prayers for taking down and putting up the Christmas Tree. I understand the author's desire to be inclusive and not exclusive.  But there is a prayer in the book for paying off your mortgage wasn't she afraid of offending apartment dwellers?

I hate that I hate this book.  I hoped this book would be written to bring everyone closer to God, but after a careful reading of it, it seems like the author thinks that everyone is okay where they were.  If that was true we would not need to pray.


Is a Skill