Five days. I can’t wait for Iowa to be over. So over. Every four years, I get angry that such a vanilla state, so atypical of many states in the nation, demands, and gets, the right to first choice. Then there’s the astonishing amount of money that gets poured into a state where only — get this — about 150,000 people trudge into uncomfortable rooms for a caucus that lasts a minimum of two hours.

Oh, I have more beefs with this system. How about the fact that at least one-third of the states have to wait to vote until, by the time it’s their turn, their votes don’t much matter anymore. The entire West Coast and their neighboring states never get a real shot at influencing the choice of the nominees. Imagine if states like Oregon, Washington, Idaho, or Utah got a real chance to influence the race.

Then there’s the caucus system. Caucuses are flat-out unfair. Try being a parent with limited discretionary money having to hire a babysitter. Try being disabled and being unable to get out or, if you can get out, having to navigate to rooms far from the entrance, and find an uncomfortable chair, look for the nearest bathroom (hopefully on the same floor). And what if you end up in the hospital, as happened to me four years ago? I couldn’t cast a vote, not even through a proxy.

With that off my chest, here are some news items I discovered in the past day, some serious and some just interesting (like the birth of a baby — the parents are disgraced former Congressman Anthony Weiner and Huma Abedin, SoS Hillary Clinton’s trusted aide):

Here’s the scoop on the baby, from The Queens’ Courier article, “Weiner, wife welcome baby boy“:

Anthony Weiner and his wife Huma Abedin — aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton — welcomed son Jordan Zane Weiner to the world on December 21, according to multiple published reports.

[Unappetizing section snipped]

[T]he proud parents have announced their new “sparkling wonder.”

According to The New York Post, Weiner took to email, alerting friends and family members about the arrival of Jordan Zane, who weighed in at 7 pounds and 5 ounces.

“Did I mention his mom is amazing? We love you for welcoming him,” Weiner said in the email about his wife.

Read all.

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How about some news on Ron Paul you may not have heard? The first is a joke, but the second story is quite useful.

The Chicago Tribune (yes, really) printed the news that “American Idol” winner Kelly Clarkson has endorsed Ron Paul. (Wasn’t she the first winner? I think so because that was the only year I watched the show, and I remember her.) But poor Kelly didn’t realize that her Twitter followers would get upset with her.

“American Idol” winner Kelly Clarkson wandered into presidential politics with an endorsement of Ron Paul, then defended her candidate against accusations of racism.

“I love Ron Paul. I liked him a lot during the last Republican nomination and no one gave him a chance. If he wins the nomination for the Republican party in 2012 he’s got my vote. Too bad he probably won’t,” Clarkson tweeted late Wednesday.

She said of her political views: “I am a Republican but I actually voted Democrat last election.”

Several of her followers accused Paul of racism and homophobia. …

The Fiscal Times has written up “Ron Paul: 16 Eye Opening Things You Don’t Know“:

If Ron Paul were elected president, you could probably smoke in public places, drive gas-guzzling cars, keep your shoes on at airport security, and pray in public schools. His “hands off” approach to government has made him the de facto leader of the Tea Party and a long-time favorite of libertarians throughout the country.


The 76-year-old Paul also says he wants to:

Balance the federal budget

Eliminate the Federal Reserve

Defund five Cabinet departments (including Commerce, Interior and Education) to save over $700 billion over four years

Eliminate the supplemental nutrition program for women and children at the Department of Agriculture

Bring home all American troops from Afghanistan and Iraq, and…

Legalize pot.

Okay. Here’s something that I didn’t know. I knew he was, um, an older man, but I didn’t realize that he is 76 years old.

Read the entire list of the “16 Eye Opening Things You Don’t Know.” There is QUITE a bit more in the story, far too much to quote here.

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Okay. Over and out … your turn! (I may pop in and add some more items.)