Saturday, August 11, 2012

I Blame Paul Ryan

In the 24 hours since Romney picked Paul Ryan:

  • Someone broke into our toolshed;
  • My wife’s email got hacked;
  • The neighbor’s dog got loose;
  • We found a black widow spider living under the back steps.

Coincidence? Maybe, maybe not. Really, there’s no way to be sure till Romney releases his tax returns. There’s reason to think that 2009 is a humdinger.

Crimes Against Me

Stacy and I were victims of two very different, very minor crimes in the last 24 hours.

Sometime last night, someone broke into our backyard shed. There’s been a lot of that in Bellevue lately. He opened the padlocked side door of the shed by tearing the hasp out of the doorframe. As far as we can see, he didn’t take anything - another advantage to a manual mower and a reluctance to use power tools. I reattached the hasp with much longer screws, and I added a deadbolt on the inside. Next time, he’ll have to work a little harder to steal nothing.

Then, this morning, I got an email from Stacy that wasn’t really from Stacy. Maybe one of her email accounts was hacked. Maybe some spammer is spoofing her name. It might even be a coincidence - Stacy’s last name is pretty common. Gmail sent the email to my inbox instead of the spam folder because it “knows” I get lots of email from Stacy.

Whatever - to be safe, Stacy changed all her email passwords.

The contrast struck me - old-school break-in on the one hand, possible cybercrime on the other.

You kids with your cybercrime. Why, when I was your age, we had to leave the house if we wanted to steal something!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Romney's Chutzpah

Even by the standards of a candidate desperate for national office, Mitt Romney has an unusually fluid approach to the issues. He’s been on both sides of pretty much every major question of the last twenty years:


(Citations here.)

Romney’s not a political newcomer, and he’s certainly not stupid. So how can he imagine that this extraordinary record of flipflopping won’t cost him votes?

Adam Gopnik offers a possible answer towards the end of this long article on Mormonism:

When, in 1978, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints abandoned the rule prohibiting blacks from serving as priests, one church leader, Bruce McConkie, explained, “It doesn’t make a particle of difference what anybody ever said about the Negro matter before the first day of June 1978.” You could find, or think you’ve found, a similar logic behind Romney’s blithe amnesia when it comes to the things he used to think and say.

Maybe. Or maybe it has nothing to do with Mormon culture, and it’s some kind of Mitt-specific moral void. Either way, it’s a fascinating, brazen attitude in a presidential wanna-be. Etch A Sketch indeed.