Election 2006: NRCC Pissing Off Cell Phone Users

Posted by Mike Merritt in Election 2006, Politics on | No Comments

So, I’m minding my own business one day, when I suddenly get a call. I look at my cell phone window, only to see the caller is from a Restricted Number. This kind of thing irks me, but to be polite, I answer. After my traditional “Hello,” I am greeted by a voice telling me it has a message about the political campaign in my area, followed immediately by an attack ad on Democratic Congressional candidate Joe Courtney. In the following weeks, I will get the same call again, sometimes multiple times a week! I knew I couldn’t possibly be the only one experiencing this, but now I’ve found out how bad it is.

According to WFSB.com, many Connecticut voters have been complaining of receiving cell phone calls from the National Republican Congressional Committee. Their primary gripe appears to be the fact that these calls take up the valuable minutes they have on their plans. Way to go, Republicans. If you want to do anything to turn off voters from your candidate, call them on their cell phone and use up their minutes…multiple times! Never mind the fact that cell phone users are complaining, anybody would have a right to rant if they were getting harassed by such callers! At first, I thought the messages were directly from the Simmons campaign until I actually listened through the entire message one day, only to find out it’s from the NRCC. Still, I’d bet some people are getting fed up with him if they’ve been receiving these calls, like I have. They might assume Simmons is endorsing these calls, and change their mind on how they want to vote. That sure is some tactic to sway people to your side!

Now, I have my cell phone listed on my voter registration, since frankly, that’s where I can be contacted while I’m at college, so maybe I have no right to complain. However, I think the Republicans are overdoing it with the volume of calls. They need to far be less intrusive if they want people to keep considering their candidate. I know people get annoyed enough by telemarketer calls. Well, there’s a whole lot more they can do to react to these messages. Like, vote the associated candidate out of office!

Now, because I risk seeming like I’m bashing Republicans, does anybody know if the Democrats are doing this anywhere? Maybe in a district that is covered by a House Democrat, like John Larson or Laura DeRosa? If so, that’s just as bad. So, if you wish to stop receiving calls from the NRCC, call 202-646-6412 and request that your number be removed from their list. It may be a mute point now that we’re less than a week away from Election Day, but it might help.


My Decision & Discussion on Lamont

Posted by Mike Merritt in Politics on | One Comment

I’ve made my decision, and it way not easy to come by. I think I’m willing to give Lamont a chance to prove himself. While I appreciate Joe’s willingness to cross party lines for some issues, I know that he certainly doesn’t cross them for every issue. And many of his “crossings” have to do with the Gang of 14 group in the Senate – the people who won’t filibuster the President’s political appointees, and (for the Republicans) won’t vote to use the so-called “nuclear option.” That’s great in some cases, but I’m not sure how many crossing he does to actually write bills.

So, I’m willing to give Lamont a chance. I’m still a little indecisive on the 2nd District House race. Simmons hasn’t done much to piss me off, so my leaning is still toward him. As for Governor, no question there: Rell gets my vote. I like the reforms she’s enacted since taking office. No, she doesn’t support gay marriage, but honestly, how many Democrats do you think really support gay marriage? I’m guessing that, while there are some (like Lamont, apparently), I’m guessing that many do not. There’s also the question of what Rell knew about Rowland’s dealings, but until evidence comes out to say she did something wrong, I’ll presume her innocent.

Back to Lamont…as of October 20th, the latest Quinnipiac poll, Lieberman is leading Lamont by 17 points. That’s huge! They still have the majority of Democrats voting for him, but Independents and Republicans are for Lieberman, according to the poll. I think that this is because Lamont hasn’t been doing enough to appeal to the moderates. He did great in rallying the core Democrats on the issue of Iraq, and that’s part of what won him the primary. However, since then, I feel he’s kind of been staying on the same track instead of adding to his scope in order to reign in more people. His method of campaigning so far appears to consist of attacking Lieberman on his closeness to President Bush, Lieberman’s attendance record, how great a teacher he was, and of course, Iraq. Well, that’s great if all the people you want voting for you are Democrats. But, that won’t convince some of the moderates, and definitely not the hardcore Republicans.

Instead, I think Lamont should be using all the commercials he’s been putting out to discuss his position in other areas. Two particular ones he seems to care about the most (besides Iraq) is healthcare and renewable energy. He’s always talking about how he drives his Toyota Prius (I think) around everywhere, so he should use his commercials to talk green energy. He could use them to briefly present his ideas on healthcare. Should he also talk about the record on voting for the issue in Washington? Sure, but link it to something else than just Iraq. Not everybody shares the same view, and just because it’s the hottest issue right now doesn’t mean it’s going to help you. Personally, I think people are starting to get sick of hearing politicians talk about Iraq (gods knows that Chris Murphy and Nancy Johnson have never touched on Iraq, they’re too busy with taxes).

Lamont has a lot of work to do if he wants to win that seat on November 7th. As time goes on, his chances of getting it become slimmer. Could things go down differently on the day? Sure could, but the numbers seem to show what’s going to happen. Mr. Lamont, if you want to win, you MUST appeal to the moderates. I know I had a hard enough time deciding on who to support, and while I’m willing to give the chance, many others may not be so nice.


Spooky Saturdays

Posted by Mike Merritt in Personal Life on | No Comments

Well, tomorrow ought to be an interesting day. I’ll be able to sleep in a bit, but at one, I’m doing Community Service at the res. hall next to mine. My job will apparently be conducting various activities. They’ll have stuff like pinatas and musical chairs and such. Little kids are going trick or treating there, so there’ll be that and other activities.

After that, though, I’ll be attending some or all of the Matchbook Romance/Sugarcult concert that’s going on here. I’ll be able to get in backstage thanks to my press pass. So, we’ll get some footage of setup and breakdown and the like. It ought to be awesome. Afterward, I’ll be helping to break down. If our club has signed up five people to do it, we’ll be able to get $200. So, I hope we got the five. We’ll see…that goes from 10pm until like 2am, so it’ll be a long night for sure.

So, that’s my Saturday. Also, I have plans to upload my Lamont/Palwekiwicz interview sometime next week. I’ll probably put it on YouTube, and I’ll be sure to upload it in full, not just the cut down, non-partisan version I did for the newscast here.


President to Make “Substantial Statement” on Iraq

Posted by Mike Merritt in Politics on | No Comments

Here it goes…he’s on. All of this is paraphrased, by the way. My comments in parenthesis.

11:01AM – “Will you work with Iran and Syria if it will help the job get done?” (Didn’t really answer the question, but)…They need to understand they cannot interfere with progress.

(Honestly, I have better things to do, and I’m not hearing much, except that we _need_ to pressure Iraq to get things done, and we’ll _consider_ anything that will help us win. So, time to take a shower.)

10:57AM – Q&A#2 – Timetables don’t work. (Come on, SOMEBODY needs a timetable. If you give Iraq all the time in the world, the “job” will never be done).

10:51AM – Q&A#1 – Terrorists hate freedom, we can’t cut and run (again), and yes, we are winning.

10:49AM – Q&A#1 – If we “cut and run,” we lose.

10:47AM – We have to deal with the struggles ahead…blah…blah.

10:45AM – If we don’t defeat the terrorists, we’re all dead (maybe slightly exaggerated here). If I thought we were going to lose, I’d bring the troops home tomorrow.

10:42AM – The experts are offering their advice on the course we should take, and my administration will take into consideration everything suggested.

10:39AM – Not only are we using military methods, we’re using diplomatic ones as well. We’re working with the Iraqi government and surrounding nations in order to stop sectarian violence.

10:37AM – Goal is the same, but methods adapt. The commanders on the ground have adapted to on-the-ground conditions.

10:34AM – We’ve made progress in Iraq, and today I’ll tell you how we’re adapting.


The Gmail Experiment

Posted by Mike Merritt in Websites on | No Comments

As a person who attends university, I have a problem. While I can use Mozilla Thunderbird to receive my email, I cannot use Thunderbird to send it, due to the blocks placed on their network…basically, they’re blocking port 25, and have no plans to open it up any time soon.

So far, I’ve been able to deal with the problem, but it’s been a bit of a pain. I get my email in Thunderbird, but then, for each account I want to respond to (and I have several), I then have to go to that account via webmail and respond there, meaning I have to login to several different places to get anything done. Well, that’s not why I moved to using a client a couple years ago. I moved so I wouldn’t have to do such a thing.

So, what to do? Well, in comes Gmail. They have a feature where you’re able to respond to email under several different email addresses. Input an email address, and they’ll send you a verification to that email. Confirm, and voila! You can respond to people via that email using Gmail. So, using this, combined with instructing my email addresses to forward to Gmail, the problem seems to be solved. I have yet to really see it work in action, so I’ll have to reserve my judgement. Using it this way, all my email will come to the same inbox, which makes it about equivalent to what Thunderbird’s Global Inbox does. I’m not exactly a big fan of that. For example, in Thunderbird, I have separate inboxes setup for all my email.

On the other hand, I have to do something. I want to be able to respond to my email without having to go elsewhere, and respond to it with the original message attached, and also avoid having to put in a subject line. I could copy the message to the compose email window, but I’m lazy in this respect. I don’t want to have to do it. So, hopefully, with Gmail’s labeling feature, this problem will be solved.

The other thing I don’t like is that Gmail is not bringing in the forwarded emails with the full address. Instead, it says something like, “something@something.com to mike”. Problem is that several of my emails are michael@something.com, so I don’t need all my emails saying “something@something.com to michael”. While you can mouse over the recipient or click “More Options”, with several emails now forwarding to Gmail, I’d prefer not to have to do that just to determine what email they mean. So, I’ll have to find a way to fix that.

Anyway, that’s it for tonight. Let the experiment begin!


CNN Wants us to Lose in Iraq?

Posted by Mike Merritt in Politics, Television on | No Comments

Yes, says Michelle Malkin, a Fox News analyst.

I’m watching Bill O’Reilly, looking to see what he was analyzing today. Well, one story he was talking about was that of a clip CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 showed of a sniper committing shootings. The clip was originally shown on Al Jazeera. Well, as Mr. O’Reilly often does, he brought on analyst Malkin and analyst Kirsten Powers to talk about the situation.

Malkin basically lambasted CNN, suggesting they wanted the U.S.A. to loose the war in Iraq, and that showing a clip such as this only proved it. Even O’Reilly didn’t agree with her. He refused to believe the likes of Larry King and others wanted the U.S. to loose the war. I obviously have to agree. While I also think they should have been a little smarter in their choice of footage, I don’t think they meant any harm by it.

So, this is yet another place where me and O’Reilly agree. Clearly, he’s not as conservative as he’s made out to be, and I think I’m right in saying that O’Reilly is no fan of CNN sometimes.

I think O’Reilly should have included it in his Most Ridiculous Item of the Day.


Early Delivery

Posted by Mike Merritt in Personal Life on | No Comments

Well, I got some good news this morning. My passport arrived three weeks earlier than the guy at the post office said it would. Now I don’t have to worry about it getting caught up in the rush that might happen once people have to get passports so they can get in to Canada, Bermuda, South America, and whoever else doesn’t require a passport now. So, I can now officially go to Greece!

Well, that is all for tonight. Just a little update on that situation.


Expedition Saturdays

Posted by Mike Merritt in Personal Life on | No Comments

Well, today was Eastern Expedition again. Neither show went too bad and everyone was good. This was my first time directing the show, and I definitely liked it. Directing Expedition is a little different than directing the news, because the newscast is more formulatic, and you are expected to do certain shots at certain times, because it has a script. However, Expedition doesn’t have a script, and while you have to be sure to follow action, you can be more creative when calling the shots. So, I’ve had just about 24 hours of Expedition; yesterday, I was at work at 2pm, and stayed until they were done lighting at 11:45pm, then today I was working on Expedition stuff from 8:30am until about 2:30pm. I’m all Expedition’d out, at least until next month!

The three roommates who were supposed to be our second show’s (my show) contestants never showed up! We knew they were just drunk and/or hungover, so that’s why. They pretty much told Adam (the producer) that if they showed, they’d be hungover. So, if anyone ever says that again, they sure won’t be contestants! I also think our backups had to backout, so we had to get three new contestants. One was my RA, Liz, who had initially come to watch. So, she was upgraded from an audience member to a contestant in a short amount of time. The second was camera 3, Tiana’s, boyfriend. The third was a friend of the first show director, Scott.

Adam, and a couple of friends are going to a Bare Naked Ladies concert tonight! We tried to get an interview with them, but no go. Unfortunately, it is at Mohegan Sun, and although it’s free, it’s 21+ only, so I cannot go. Which brings up an interesting question. I’m only 20. Adam wanted me to be the cameraman…would they have let me in? Well, I’ll never know now! So, I’m not sure what to do tonight. I’ve been invited to go to a party, but I don’t know if I want to do that after hours upon hours of Expedition stuff. I might get some sleep and then watch a couple movies and do my laundry.

Tomorrow, I’ll be helping at the Open House, specifically in the area of the studio, showing people it, and talking about the club. Should be a good thing to do for a couple hours.

Ok, enough ramblings for one day. I’ll have something more beefy later today, or tomorrow.


MTLJPost Test

Posted by Mike Merritt in Dymersion on | No Comments

If you’re seeing this, it means that the MTLJPost plugin is back up an running! After finding the fix at this site, I was able to apply it. So, all my entries will post here again!


Politician Week

Posted by Mike Merritt in Personal Life, Politics on | No Comments

I don’t know if it’s a political move, or just because they’re darn nice guys, but this week was politician week on News 22. If you were able to tune in, you would have noticed we had Ned Lamont, State Rep. Walter Palwelkiewicz, and Joe Courtney on the newscast tonight.

I think it may be a combination of both. As challengers (except Palwelkiewicz, who’s an incumbent) they know they need all the votes they can get. Which could be why Courtney was in Hurley Hall meeting with people there, and why Tuesday was Lamont’s second time on campus in as many months. From what former anchor Ryan Spain said today, the station he now works at, News Channel 8, would have found it much harder to get such an exclusive.

At the same time, they do seem like they’re pretty good guys personally. At least, I know Lamont was in a very cheery mood Tuesday, a very personable guy.

Now, I wish November 7th would come so I could make my decision!

If you missed tonight’s live airing of News 22, look for it again on Tuesday at 7pm!


Next Page »