Tuesday Reads: Romney vs. Perry, 9/11 Revelations, and Hormonal Effects of Fatherhood

Good Morning!! Let’s see if there’s any news out there. I didn’t see much of the Tea Party debate, because I was watching the New England Patriots crush the Miami Dolphins. That was soooo much better than watching Wolf Blitzer and the crazy people. Thanks so much to those of your who watched and documented the insanity so I didn’t have to.

According to Alexander Burns at Politico, Mitt Romney turned into an attack dog and lit into Rick Perry.

Mitt Romney went on the attack against Rick Perry at the first possible opportunity Monday night, challenging the Texas governor on whether he “continues to believe that Social Security should not be a federal program … or does he retreat from that view.”

[….]

Romney jumped in with a hit against Perry’s book, “Fed Up!” – the tome that Perry used to describe Social Security as a program that violated constitutional principles.

“Gov. Perry pointed out that in his view, Social Security is not constitutional,” Romney said.

And so on, with Perry giving weak responses. It’ll be interesting to see Romney challenge Obama on Social Security during the general election. Talk about role reversal!

Unfortunately, the latest CNN poll shows Perry still leading the rest of the Republicans in terms of electability.

Hours before the start of the first-ever CNN/Tea Party Republican debate, a new national survey indicates that Texas Gov. Rick Perry is maintaining his lead in the race for the GOP presidential nomination.

And according to a CNN/ORC International Poll, what appears to be Perry’s greatest strength – the perception among Republicans that he is the candidate with the best chance to beat President Barack Obama in 2012 – seems to be exactly what the GOP rank and file are looking for.

Paul Krugman wrote an addendum to his recent “controversial” blog post about the September 11 anniversary.

The fact is that the two years or so after 9/11 were a terrible time in America – a time of political exploitation and intimidation, culminating in the deliberate misleading of the nation into the invasion of Iraq. It’s probably worth pointing out that I’m not saying anything now that I wasn’t saying in real time back then, when Bush had a sky-high approval rating and any criticism was denounced as treason. And there’s nothing I’ve done in my life of which I’m more proud.

[….]

Now, I should have said that the American people behaved remarkably well in the weeks and months after 9/11: There was very little panic, and much more tolerance than one might have feared. Muslims weren’t lynched, and neither were dissenters, and that was something of which we can all be proud.

But the memory of how the atrocity was abused is and remains a painful one. And it’s a story that I, at least, can neither forget nor forgive.

Good for him for sticking to his guns.

Former Senator Bob Graham today called for another 9/11 investigation, because of a new report that the FBI knew of connections between the hijackers and Saudis living in Florida and never revealed those finding to Congress of the 9/11 Commission.

Ten years after the deadliest attack of terrorism on U.S. soil, new information has emerged that shows the FBI found troubling ties between the hijackers and residents in the upscale community in southwest Florida, but the investigation wasn’t reported to Congress or mentioned in the 9/11 Commission Report.

Former U.S. Sen. Bob Graham, the Florida Democrat who cochaired the bipartisan congressional Joint Inquiry into the attacks, said he should have been told about the findings, saying it “opens the door to a new chapter of investigation as to the depth of the Saudi role in 9/11. … No information relative to the named people in Sarasota was disclosed.”

The U.S. Justice Department, the lead agency that investigated the attacks, refused to comment, saying it will discuss only information already released.

The results of a new study suggest that when men become fathers, their testosterone levels go down. The researchers looked at testosterone levels in a large sample of men before they married and had children and again a few years after their children were born. Lower levels of testosterone could be nature’s way of making men less interested in other partners and more interested in caring for their families.

Experts say the research has implications for understanding the biology of fatherhood, hormone roles in men and even health issues like prostate cancer.

“The real take-home message,” said Peter Ellison, a professor of human evolutionary biology at Harvard who was not involved in the study, is that “male parental care is important. It’s important enough that it’s actually shaped the physiology of men.”

“Unfortunately,” Dr. Ellison added, “I think American males have been brainwashed” to believe lower testosterone means that “maybe you’re a wimp, that it’s because you’re not really a man.

“My hope would be that this kind of research has an impact on the American male. It would make them realize that we’re meant to be active fathers and participate in the care of our offspring.”

That’s all I’ve got for today. What are you reading and blogging about?

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16 Comments on “Tuesday Reads: Romney vs. Perry, 9/11 Revelations, and Hormonal Effects of Fatherhood”

  1. Pat Johnson says:

    I only watched snippets of this latest debate. You missed very little by tuning in the Patriots game.

    One question in particular for those onstage hoping to privatize all insurance policies: What would you tell a 31 yr old uninsured man injured in an automobile accident facing 6 months of surgery and rehabilitation?

    Condensed answer (most of the candidates “danced around” this one): People need to take responsibility for themselves when it comes to paying the bill. Yep, faced with a possible bill that might possibly exceed 1/4 million dollars, you are on your one! You should look to the community and your neighbors for help but in the end, you pay for this unintended tragedy out of pocket.

    You have to love the critical thinking skills of these people. With injurie this massive the person would be unable to work thus inhibiting the chances to “pay into” his private retirement fund or pay for all those services no longer provided by government but now in the hands of private agencies. Throw in the loss of home and you have now created a person whose address may very well be the street.

    Compassion? None.

  2. Branjor says:

    A note on testosterone – I read about a study some years back ago in which testosterone levels were high in male monkeys when they were in a social environment where they dominated, but went dramatically down when placed in environments in which they did not.
    Given the negative behavioral effects of the hormone and generalizing to men, the world would probabaly be a much better place if men didn’t dominate it.
    Testosterone is produced by both sexes, of course, and the appreciably lower levels of it in females are probably caused in part by our lower status in society.

  3. Peggy Sue says:

    I was absolutely appalled by what I heard during the Tea Party debate. The hypothetical thrown out to the GOP contenders about a 30-something man who needs surgery but has no health insurance was answered by a shout out from the audience:

    Let ‘em die!

    And there was not a single response of moral outrage by that outburst. Ron Paul’s strategy is to rely on charitable organizations, churches, etc. Problem is we have an economic crisis right now with 25 + million people unemployed and underemployed, a growing number of them homeless. Simple Food Banks are struggling to keep up with the demand of daily substenance. But now organizations like this are expected to pay for life-saving surgeries?

    Or is this another case where notions of ‘liberty’ obliterate common decency? What I hear?

    Be free to die! Or as Grayson suggested: Die quickly.

    Plus, I just loved Bachmann’s accustion that Obama had stolen 500 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare. This from a member of a party that would dismantle every social program known to man. And she rants on and on about crimping a program they all despise.

    From my point of view, the whole debate was sickening.

  4. madamab says:

    Sadly for them, the Republicans in that poll are grossly mistaken. Perry is the epitome of unelectable. If Perry is the GOP nominee, Obama wins in a landslide.

    It just shows how completely off-the-rails the GOP base has become, that they think a guy who dumps all over Social Security as “unconstitutional,” believes Texas should secede from the Union, feels praying for rain is a viable means of addressing a drought, and “heh-hehs” just like Dubya, is electable.

    Here are some poll numbers on whether Perry’s rhetoric is catching on. It seems that younger people think he is more right than older people, but they still comprise a miniscule percentage of the electorate. A very high percentage of people think he is wrong.

    http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2011/images/09/12/rel15b.pdf

    • Pat Johnson says:

      The young are no different than we were at that age: we never considered ourselves growing older or needing care.

      They have yet to experience life’s challenges when one single event can lead to a lifetime of despair. They have yet to be taught that it takes only one crippling disease, an unforseen accident, a loss of employment to establish an economic setback that could function for periods of time that will set them back.

      They are so far “unschooled” in the hardknocks department that we know will be part and parcel of their existence as it has been for all of us who have braved that age and come through to the other side.

      Until then, the “world is their oyster” as they see it and it only requires “hard work” to accomplish this feat. We know better.

      It’s what makes us “us” and them “them”.

    • Beata says:

      How bizarre would it be if young people who supported Obama in 2008 became Perry voters in 2012?

      Pat, I don’t totally agree with your assessment of young people. Not all of them have grown up privileged. Some have already faced major challenges. But perhaps they are less likely to vote than their peers who have had it easy.

      • Pat Johnson says:

        Beata: I was speaking of those kids of privilege who made such an impact back in 2008. But most kids between the ages of say 18 to 28 have yet to face the same problems that effect many of those over that age.

        Mortgage payments, car loans, insurance requirements, childbirth, that puts the average worker in a position to lose it all should an event occur that would threaten their existence.

        Settling down and starting a family nowadays contains many risk factors unforeseen when young and single and have only yourself to consider.

        Life happens. To many of these kids it has yet to begin in earnest.

    • Woman Voter says:

      Either way, they get a Republican in the White House and the people are left to struggle.

  5. The Rock says:

    “…because I was watching the New England Patriots crush the Miami Dolphins….”

    Did Brady have a great game or what?!?! The 99-yard TD pass to Welker was a joy to watch! I’m a HUGE NE fan, because I love Belichek, and I love Brady!! Current favorite player in the NFL – Danny Woodhead. He plays wherever he is needed and plays there well. And with the death of Mrs. Kraft, those guys are playing for something this year. A title might be in the cards (at least I hope so).

    You can see where my attention was last night! You mean to tell me the people in the audience actually chanted Let em die to the hypothetical about the accident victim? You really have to wonder about a group of people with that kind of group think.

    We are so fu*^d.

    Asshats.

    Hillary 2012

  6. Minkoff Minx says:

    Thanks for that Bob Graham link BB…I have always appreciated him.

    As for the FBI connection, I am glad there is a new investigation going…

  7. B Kilpatrick says:

    Republicans tend to have an amazing ability to select the worst possible candidate for nomination.