The Year of Moving Forward

The Year of Moving Forward
At our 4 person wedding reception in DC

Friday, January 4, 2008

1. Iowa 2. Creationism 3. Recipe for left over ham

1. The big winner in last night's Iowa caucus was...the Democratic Party!

Barack Obama walked away with 38% support, and John Edwards followed with 30% and Hillary Clinton with 29%.

Clinton would have like to have won, no doubt, but this is not a death knell for her candidacy. Look at history, in 1988 Richard Gephardt won the Iowa Caucus, but fizzled after that, and Michael Dukakis became the nominee. The results were so close, that any one of the three leaders could go on to secure the nomination.

But the Democratic Party attracted over 220,000 participants, compared to only 114,000 Republicans. This was almost an 80% increase in the number of particpants for the Democrats, compared to an increase of about 30% for the Republicans. The White House will be painted Blue in 2008! Figuratively, don't worry.

The Democratic Party also showed that in conservative (60% of Republican identified as evangelicals), white (>90%) Iowa they are not afraid to support a minority candidate. This is in a system where your vote is not stand in a corner with like minded voters and somebody counts heads. You wouldn't see this in the Republican party, that's for sure.

And here is a reason Hillary's third place finish is not as significant as it looks. As an example of how the Democratic caucuses work, CNN took actual numbers from the first round of a caucus, then showed how those with less than 15% of the votes had to drop out, so their voters had to re-align with other candidates. In the example they showed, Clinton had the most votes in the first round, but of the re-aligned votes, she got none, so Edwards and Obama benefitted. As Bobby said, Obama won in a state where people get to vote twice. If in Iowa everyone got to vote just once, Clinton probably would have won.

If anyone felt the death knell, it was Mitt Romney. Good. He is so lame, here is what he said trying to explain his lie that he once saw his father march with Martin Luther King, Jr. "You know, I'm an English literature major as well. When we say, 'I saw the Patriots win the World Series,' it doesn't necessarily mean you were there. Excuse me, the Super Bowl."

The Patriots play at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro in Romney's home state, and he can't even keep it straight what sport they play? Romney thinks his looks can get him elected, but if looks were all it took then Tom Brady would be running as Massachusetts' favorite son:

from Most Beautiful Man

But even this didn't just happen. Here's Brady's NFL Scouting Combine picture from 2000:

from The Big Lead

How quickly the focus can shift from politics to...

2. Science, Evolution and Creationism. This is the title of a new book published by the National Academies that was featured on NBC nightly news last night and is being released today. The book explains why Creationism or Intelligent Design should not be taught in Science classes, although it may have a role in other subjects in schools. Read the Summary Brochure or view or buy the book here .

Read my post on Intelligent Design is not Science here.

3. Tired of leftover ham. Ham or other parts of the pig are commonly served on New Years Day, and leftover ham sandwiches get old. Try this soup. I cooked it last night and got good reviews. Of course, the cornbread I made to go with it helped.

Ham and Bean Soup.

1 pound dried Great Northern beans

6 cups of water

1 1/2 pounds cubed cooked ham

2 tsp salt

1 tsp dried thyme (whole or powdered)

4 peppercorns

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 bay leaf

2 cups water

4 potatoes, peeled and quartered

3 carrots, scraped and cut into 1/2 inch slices

1 medium onion, chopped

With the beans, sort and wash and cover with water and let soak overnight, or do like I did and bring to a boil and gently cook about an hour or so. Drain. Then add 6 cups of fresh water, and the ham and the next 6 ingredients. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat and simmer about an hour or so, then add the remaining water and vegetables. Cover and simmer about 30 more minutes until the veggies are tender.

If you need the cornbread recipe, let me know. Yum

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