This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Comments here or emails to me at abulsme@abulsme.com are encouraged... or follow me on Twitter as @abulsme.

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July 2003
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No Suit Today

I was going to go suit shopping with Kelly today. But by the time I got up, finished talking to Marilyn about Idaho and her visit her to help me unpack, and was putting my shoes on, I hadn’t yet called my dealer about the car, and Kelly called, ready for me to come meet her for the suit shopping.

I told her about the car overheating and leaking and making lots of smoke and that I hadn’t gotten to take it in yet. She suggested perhaps we could go suit shopping tomorrow instead. That worked for me. I figured I could get the car fixed today, and be all ready for suit shopping tomorrow.

Then I called the Saturn dealer. They probably couldn’t get to my car until Monday. And the rental car people left at noon and wouldn’t be back until Monday. So it would probably be better if I just waited to take the car in Monday.

Sigh. OK. Kelly said she could pick me up for the suit shopping. And while I probably COULD drive the car a bit without it exploding, I’d rather not. So I guess I’m staying home and/or walking or biking.

Hmmm… biking. I haven’t done that in a bit. Perhaps I should. But I was thinking of walking over to the little restaurant at the golf course. I have never gone there in all the years I have been here. So I thought perhaps I would walk over there today.

I think I’ll do that.

Idaho Developments

Planning for the Idaho random trip is starting to solidify. It looked like it was going to be me, Marilyn and Chad. But a couple days ago out of the blue I got an email from my cousin Seth saying he would like to join us. So it looks like it may be the four of us.

So next we are picking which dates to go. The suggestion currently on the table from Marilyn is August 30th to September 7th, so as to use the Labor Day vacation day. Sounded fine to me. Waiting for feedback from Chad and Seth. Then if we settle the dates, tickets will be bought, and it will be time to start figuring out where we will stay.

Our leaders at their best

Ah yes, this is the way it is supposed to work…

The House That Roared by Juliet Eilperin and Albert B. Crenshaw in the Washington Post

Republicans recounted indignities of their own: When Rep. Scott McInnis (R-Colo.) had told Stark to “shut up” during the committee meeting, Stark denounced him as “a little wimp. Come on, come over here and make me, I dare you. . . . You little fruitcake. You little fruitcake. I said you are a fruitcake.”

Actually, while all the tensions of this situation are a bit comical, the real problem here is that we don’t have a divided government right now. The whole separation of powers between the branches was designed to put checks and balances in place between the branches. In the original design, part of this was making sure the house, senate, president (and court for that matter) were all decided in different ways and served different constituancies.

  • The house was elected in small districts directly by the people, and was the representation for the PEOPLE.
  • The senate was appointed by the state legislatures and represnted the STATES.
  • The president was appointed by the electoral college and represented the NATIONAL STATE

    Unfortunately, very quickly after President Washington, the electoral college ceased to be a deliberative body as it was intended to be, and became a rubber stamp for those electing the electors, to the point today that we usually don’t even know who the electors are, and only who they are “pledged” to. They weren’t even supposed to be behoilden to a specific presidential candidate before the election in the way it was supposed to work!! You were supposed to choose people to be electors who had good judgement and who could make the decision to pick the president from those nominated by the electoral college when they met. Don’t even get me started on how much of a corruption even HAVING primaries is… Anyway, while the way electors are proportioned between the states is slightly different than how it is done in the house, it is very close, essentially making the constituancy of both the president and the house to be almost the same. Thus weakening the differences of interest inherant in the design, and weakening the checks and balances.

    Anyway, it was further corrupted by the 17th Amendment to the Constitution, which instituted the popular election of senators, thus depriving completely the states of a voice in the federal government, and once again aligning the constituancies and interests of the senate with the house and the president. Once again weakening the checks and balances.

    And so we end up with a system that originally carefully seperated the interests of the three bodies, to ensure stong checks and balances and differences between the bodies, with one where the interests are now closely aligned. Now the ONLY time the checks and balances actually work as they were intended to work is when we have divided government, with the presidency and the congress in different hands. Because this is the only time the bodies will truely conflict with each other, resulting in the blunting of extreme actions on any side, and the forging of more reasonable compromises. (Although, I must admit, even in divided government, the congress often rolls over and does not protest at the encroachment of executive power into many areas that it should be protective of.)

    Anyway… whenever there is no division, and we have all Republican control, or we have all Democratic control as has occured previously, you get the potental for unchecked abuses by both the congress and the presidency. Given that the other factors which attempted to ensure differences in interests between the branches have eroded or failed, divided government is really needed. Hopefully at the election the Dems will be able to take either the congress, or the presidency, BUT NOT BOTH.

  • Those Kids and their Music!

    OK, so I am buying a house. I am about to leave this apartment. I have been in this apartment for almost seven years. But in the last two weeks something has happened that has never happened before here.

    I had a new set of neighbors move into the apartment directly below me about a week ago. And they are loud. Almost every night they are playing really loud music, with a big thumping bass line. I can feel the vibrations with every beat. And it sounds like for the second time since they have been here they are having a party or something. I hear lots and lots of loud voices from below. Muffled, but loud. And occationally loud TV noises too.

    These people must be deaf or going deaf. None of my other neighbors have ever played their stuff this loud or made so much damn noise. I am trying to just watch a little TV here, and maybe sleep, but it is loud enough to be distracting.

    This sucks.

    I am glad I am moving in… 24 days… Woo!

    Overheat

    So, I was supposed to meet Brandy after work to review more papers on the house. But the papers were not ready. But she called and was all saying she’d had a rough week and how about a drink. I was very tired, but got talked into it. We met near my new house. At which point it was noticed that smoke was pouring out of the front of my car and coolant was spurting out and leaking all over the ground. Oh good.

    So we bought some new coolant at the nearby grocery store, went to Pizzaria Uno and had a drink while the stupid thing cooled down, then I filled up the coolant and drove home without it overheating again.

    But this means in the morning I have to take it in to the dealer to have them fix the leak. Which means I have to get up way early since in the afternoon I am meeting Kelly to help me pick out and buy a new suit. I ruined my old suit by washing it by mistake, and I have a wedding to go to in a couple of weeks.

    Anyway, I’ll have to deal with the car in the morning before that. Poo.