You can learn a lot by watching C-SPAN

If you have a basic cable package, you probably have C-SPAN and C-SPAN2. And you probably watch them about as much as if you didn’t own TV. But you should watch them more (and by that I mean “some”) because when you complain that “nothing is on,” C-SPAN is, and you can learn a lot.

For example, you learn that government is mind-numbingly boring, stupid and inarticulate. Otto von Bismarck once said, “Laws are like sausage; it’s better not to see them made.” To some extent, C-SPAN is a window into that sausage factory. You can’t see everything, but what you do see makes your stomach turn. Congressman Mark Pryor of Arkansas has pointed out you don’t have to pass an IQ test to be in the Senate, and he was being honest. Sit down for just a few minutes to watch the nation’s most professional and powerful legislature and its proceedings, and wonder how some of these people were ever elected. Then wonder just how much you want these people’s decisions affecting your daily life.

It’s possible C-SPAN is actually the propaganda wing of the Libertarian party.

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So much depends upon a balding tennis ball

I’ve recently rediscovered bouncing. Tennis balls, rubber balls, golf balls, toy balls – whatever bounces and fits in my hand, I bounce it, oh how I do.

It’s one of the joys we take for granted because it’s commonly available to all, and since it’s so simple, we’re expected to outgrow it. Maybe there is a time to put away childish things, but not yet.

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Speak up! When you ought to be talking, make yourself heard

I don’t know if you noticed (or remember), but the other day the OA published its weekly poll on the subject of offshore oil drilling. Something like 87 percent of our respondents were in favor of doing it while just 13 percent were against. Not a surprising result for this area, really.

When you looked to the bottom of the page, though, all three of the comments we printed were opposed to drilling.

From appearances it would seem the Odessa American, or at least whoever was responsible for that page, was so biased that they hand-picked only the comments in line with their thinking and ignored the rest.

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A short time spent channeling Yogi Berra

I was talking to someone the other day about the Odessa American’s online discussion forum. You may not have been aware the OA had any forums, and that’s what we were talking about.

“I don’t know why they aren’t more popular,” she said. “The forums are just as easy to find as the photos and blogs, and people use those fairly regularly.” “I don’t know either,” I said, “but I bet if more people starting using the forum, it would be more popular.” And I felt quite proud of my insight until I heard the echo of Yogi Berra in my head.

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