I am extremely impressed with Obama ‘08: The Official iPhone Application. It’s slick, down-to-earth, full-featured, breathtakingly gorgeous, fast, and functional. Its blue theme coherently extends the Obama ‘08 campaign branding to mobile devices. Check out these screens:
It’s interesting that the Obama campaign application shows your friends (classified by zip code) as a checklist to call off and recruit. Will it work to get more people out on voting day? Who can say. It’s certainly aggressive, and the only big turn-off of the application. In a way, it reminds me of the moronic Facebook applications “Vampires and Werewolves” or “Pirates vs Ninjas” which both try to coerce you into harassing your friends.
The local news is what I’m looking for, Obama news and updates for the US and NYC.
The issues pages are also nice; it would be better, perhaps if they included a summary of other candidates views, with rebuttals from the Obama camp, but you can’t wish for everything to be perfectly balanced–this is politics.
Gizmodo rants, “This is something like what politicking at the grassroots level will look like by the next election—local and immediate, but definitely national in scope. It makes you feel like a part of the campaign.” For me, this might be the first opportunity to follow Obama’s announcements without being harassed by email or sms-spammed.
Go download it now in the iTunes store, it’s free!
Sarah Palin, after winning John McCain’s VP nomination, has been in the news a lot these days. Photoshopped and real pictures showing her in her beauty pageant glory days have been flooding the web, while incriminating Youtube videos exploit her poor camera performance and public speaking ability. Everywhere I look, no one can take her as a serious contender for the Vice Presidency.
But that’s not why I think Sarah Palin sucks. I don’t care about her looks, her messy personal life, or her pregnant teenage daughter. I care about what she’s done, and what she’s willing to do, in office.
Sarah Palin: Eminent Domain
Sarah Palin, while mayor of Wasilla (1996-2002), decided to build a $15M multi-use sports facility as her legacy. However, when the city failed to close the $125k deal on the land where she wanted it built with the Alaska Nature Conservancy, they went ahead and began to build anyway. On someone else’s land. Sara Palin then invoked Eminent Domain law to sue the developer who held title to the land, Gary Lundgren, who eventually won the court case, and settled with the city to the tune of an additional $1.7M.
Sarah Palin sucks because she is willing to try to steal private property from its rightful owners for her own good.
Sarah Palin: Book Bans
According to Time, Sarah Palin, “asked the library how she could go about banning books” because some of her constituents believed they used “inappropriate” language. Sarah Palin also threatened to fire the librarian, Mary Ellen Baker, for not giving “full support” to the mayor.
Update: the following list of books Sarah Palin wanted banned, courtesy of Liveleak, looks similar to every other list I’ve seen of books the Christian right has wanted banned.
Update 2: The above list is a complete fabrication, a copy-paste job of an older list of books banned over time. Some fact checking shows that books late in the Harry Potter series are on the list, which came out after Sarah Palin’s inquiries into book-banning. The truth of the book-banning incident is apparently a rhetorical inquiry into how the librarians would react were she to issue the order… still scary…
Sarah Palin sucks because she is willing to censor anything that doesn’t fall into her narrow set of beliefs.
Sarah Palin: Creationist
According to The Lang Report, Sarah Palin in 2006 said in a gubernatorial debate, “Teach both. You know, don’t be afraid of education. Healthy debate is so important, and it’s so valuable in our schools. I am a proponent of teaching both.” In spite of courts having (fortunately) ruled that teaching creationism is a violation of the separation of Church and State, electing someone with Sarah Palin’s beliefs will inevitable continue the Bush legacy of eroding America’s scientific prominence.
Note that the education arena is not the only area where Sarah Palin’s policy may have been shaped by her religious views. Her Pastor Kalnins believes in the “end times” or “last days,” and that Alaska may soon “be the refuge” for those fleeing the apocalypse of the world. These beliefs are absurd.
Sarah Palin sucks because she’s willing to compromise educational policy for her own personal religious beliefs.
Sarah Palin: Homophobe
I’ll submit the following quotation from The Bilerico Project, which lays out the facts fairly well:
Palin said she’s not out to judge anyone and has good friends who are gay, but that she supported the 1998 constitutional amendment. Elected officials can’t defy the court when it comes to how rights are applied, she said, but she would support a ballot question that would deny benefits to homosexual couples. “I believe that honoring the family structure is that important,” Palin said.
Sarah Palin sucks because she believes homosexual couples are inferior to heterosexual ones.
Sarah Palin: Racist
Sarah Palin’s attitude towards native populations living in Alaska, or black Barack Obama, indicates that skin color matters to her. The LA Progressive article Palin Is “Racist, Sexist, Vindictive, And Mean” sheds some light:
“Sambo beat the bitch” may be everyday language up in the bush. Whether it – and the outlook, politics and worldview Palin reflects when she says such things in public – should be part of a presidential campaign is another thing altogether. The comment says as much about McCain as it does about Palin, and it says a lot of things about Americans who overlook such statements (as well as her record) and vote anyway for McCain.
Sarah Palin sucks because she refuses to treat those she views as different as her equals in politics. America is a complex country, full of differing cultural groups and interest; only a president sensitive to the variety of man can successfully navigate the American melting pot.
Sarah Palin: Anti Sex Education
Sarah Palin oppose the “right to choose”, and advocates abstinence-only sex education. The Huffington Post quotes her saying, “The explicit sex-ed programs will not find my support.” This is a problem, because abstinence-only sex education is futile and ineffective, and has been thoroughly debunked. Reading statistics like “by age 18, about 71 percent of U.S. youth have had sexual intercourse” would lead one who cares about America’s youth to teach them safe-sex, not tell them a “no sex” message that will be ignored.
Update 3: For the other side of the story, you should read Newsweek’s great Sliming Palin: False Internet claims and rumors fly about McCain’s running mate story. Although I feel many of their anecdotes are just trying to muddy the waters, no issue in politics is black and white either, and this certainly deserves the “fair and balanced” treatment. Isn’t life just shades of gray?
Update 4: Check out what Matt Damon thinks of Sarah Palin:
There’s now a serious reason not to vote for Barack Hussein Obama in the upcoming election. On the issue of illegal wiretapping he voted for HR 6304, which grants retroactive immunity from prosecution to telephone companies who cooperated with Bush’s presidency to illegally spy on millions of Americans.
We are all disappointed, Obama. TechCrunch, in Barack Obama Breaks Promise, Flip Flops, and supports Telco’s, says it best:
In voting for the bill, Obama acted in direct contradiction to his earlier statements. In 2007 Bill Burton, an Obama campaign spokesman, said “To be clear: Barack will support a filibuster of any bill that includes retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies.”
Update: BoingBoing just posted the same thing a little late to the game!