Who Am I?

My photo

I served in the US Navy from 2002-08; four of those years were as a Nuclear Propulsion Operator aboard an aircraft carrier. I engage in political activism in various Democratic circles when I am able to. I have a cat, and I am an uncle.

All opinions that I express are my own and do not reflect the views of any organization that I represent.

Friday, December 26, 2014

2014 NFL SEASON WEEK 17




Divisional games are scheduled in Week 17 as they have since 2010 in order to ensure that the last week of the season has the games with the most impact on the playoffs.

This is the first season since NBC was awarded the Sunday Night NFL package in 2006 where no game originally scheduled in the Sunday Night game was flexed out. The only week where a Sunday game is flexed to Sunday Night was this week in the last week of the season. And that game is…

Thursday, December 18, 2014

COLBERT/KLAY



Phil Klay was The Colbert Report's final interview on Wednesday night.

Klay is a Marine and served in Iraq as a Public Affairs Officer from January 2007 to February 2008. His book "Redeployment" is a collection of short stories about experiences our troops have faced in a decade of war.

COLBERT/OBAMA (8 December 2014)







PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: THE DECREE

COLBERT/DUCKWORTH (7 October 2014)



THREATDOWN: ALL BEAR EDITION (15 July 2014)

OBAMACARE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN (19 September 2013)





STEPHEN'S DRESSAGE TRAINING


THE END OF A COLB-ERA


Tonight The Colbert Report ends its 9 year run on Comedy Central as host faux news pundit Stephen Colbert goes on and becomes the next host of CBS's Late Night Show when host David Letterman retires sometime in 2015.

FRANCE/COLBERT (26 June 2007)

COLBERT/CARELL (7 July 2010)

FOUR MORE YEARS OF HOPEY CHANGE (7 November 2012)





THE RUMBLE IN THE AIR-CONDITIONED AUDITORIUM DEBATE PREP (3 October 2012)

RALLY TO RESTORE SANITY AND/OR FEAR (30 October 2010)

COLBERT TESTIFIES BEFORE CONGRESS (24 September 2010)

COLBERT/TYSON (29 January 2010)

COLBERT/ODIERNO (8 June 2009)

THE WORD: CHANGE (5 November 2008)

THE COLBERT REPORT: THREATDOWN (THE HOMO-SEXY EDITION) (19 June 2006)

STEPHEN COLBERT AT THE WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENTS' DINNER (29 April 2006)


THE WORD: TRUTHINESS (17 October 2005)

2014 NFL SEASON WEEK 16



Wednesday, December 17, 2014

SIMPSONS ROASTING ON AN OPEN FIRE (17 December 1989)



"Yes, the Simpsons have come a long way since an old drunk made humans out of his rabbit characters to pay off his gambling debts. Who knows what adventures they'll have between now and the time the show becomes unprofitable?"

- Troy McClure (voiced by Phil Hartman), "The Simpsons" 138th Episode Spectacular

Thursday, December 11, 2014

2014 NFL SEASON WEEK 15




There are three weeks left in the season and no one has clinched a playoff spot. That could change with the games coming up this weekend. Here are the latest playoff clinching scenarios that you can keep track of while you watch the games over the weekend.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

SUPPORT THE TROOPS*




Tuesday was Veterans' Day and it has come and gone with the usual fanfare of parades and tributes.

If this is your first time visiting my corner of the Internet, a brief piece about my background. I served in the United States Navy from 2002-08. I was a nuclear mechanical operator stationed aboard the nuclear powered aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) from 2004-08. I did a deployment to the Persian Gulf in 2005. Upon my return to the states, I was in the Virginia shipyards for the remainder of my brief Navy career. During my time in Virginia, I played a role in assisting the ship during Reactor Complex Overhaul (RCOH) where we took out the two nuclear reactors and replaced them with two brand new ones along with performing other critical maintenance that extended the life of the ship for another quarter of a century.

I am passionate about Veterans issues ranging from ensuring that our benefits are honored and finding ways to improve upon them to my small efforts to help repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and that ALL military families are recognized to ensuring that we continue a responsible drawdown from Afghanistan and make sure that we use our military and other instruments of foreign policy responsibly.

In the past year, Veterans issues have been in the spotlight.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

HOUSE AND SENATE ELECTION PREDICTIONS 2014




I have been VERY busy of late blockwalking for Senator Mark Udall, US House candidate Andrew Romanoff in Colorado's 6th congressional district, and a state house candidate for The Lege General Assembly. I have also done phone banking to get out the vote for the Colorado Democrats.

Who will control Congress?

OTHER ELECTIONS TO WATCH, 2014 EDITION




I can attest from my experience of living in Texas that down ballots do matter. Here are some of the governors and down ballot races I am keeping an eye on during Election Night 2014.

LONE STAR CANDIDATE



He is a Democrat.

The district is rated R+32.

To describe its vastness, most of my drive out of Texas was in that district.

Much respect for him running this election.



Monday, November 3, 2014

JOHN F. KENNEDY ON VOTING




This post was previously used in the run up to the 2012 Elections. Kennedy's message on voting was recorded days after the Cuban Missile Crisis. Election Day 1962 fell on the same day that it did in 2012.

I have altered Kennedy's quote just SLIGHTLY to reflect when election day is this year.

"In these tense and anxious weeks, I know that every American citizen wants to know what we can do for his country. Not everyone can serve in our armed forces or serve our government, but there is one thing you can do. There is one way you can indicate your devotion to freedom. There is one way in which we can show how strongly we believe in our democracy. Tuesday, (November 4, 2014), is Election Day. I hope every American will turn out and vote -- every American, every member of his family -- and show the world how strongly we believe in freedom, how strongly we believe in our country, how strongly we believe in democracy."

- John F. Kennedy, 31 October 1962

Sunday, November 2, 2014

FAVORITE SIMPSONS POLITICAL QUOTES (2014 EDITION)




It is the Sunday before the election and a biannual tradition here at Michael's Rant where I display my favorite Simpsons political moments and quotes.


DAYLIGHT TIME ENDS 2014


0100A: Watts News Network clocks reversed one hour to conform with time zone TANGO.

Unless you are a Republican… then clocks are reversed 100 years to conform with you social policies.


Thursday, October 30, 2014

2014 NFL SEASON WEEK 9



Before I get into my picks, I will make a shocking announcement.

I will probably not be watching a lot of football this Sunday.

(cue the Apocalypse)

As you are aware, there are elections in Colorado that are very close. The Senate race could determine control of the US Senate. There is a US House race that I am helping to flip to Team Blue. Most importantly, we have a gubernatorial, state legislative races, and a couple of ballot initiatives that are key to what kind of state do we want Colorado to be.

Enjoy the games. I will enjoy the block walking and phone banking while I follow the scores on my phone.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

IN WHICH MICHAEL WATTS VOTES IN COLORADO







ROCKY MOUNTAIN WAY



"Colorado is a land of contrasts. You have the very liberal capital city of Denver where Governor Hickenlooper was the mayor of the city and nearby University of Colorado at Boulder. The city has seen a boom in the medical marijuana industry. Travel south on I-25 and you end up in Colorado Springs home of the conservative organization Focus on the Family."

2014 NFL SEASON WEEK 8




Wednesday, October 22, 2014

MEET JONI ERNST



This is Joni Ernst.

She is the Republican candidate for the US Senate in Iowa.

She won the nomination by easily clearing the 35% threshold to avoid the process being decided at the state convention.

Her positions are for the lack of a better word unique.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

THE LAST FRONTIER



In 2010 the senate election in Alaska was focused on the intraparty fighting among Republicans. In that election, Joe Miller who had backing from Sarah Palin won the US Republican Senate primary defeating incumbent Senator Lisa Murkowski and appeared to be a shoe-in to win that election.

What he didn't count on was that Alaska allows for a write-in candidacy.

Senator Murkowski launched a successful write-in bid and defeating Miller in a three-way election and kept her senate seat. I am no fan of Republicans, but I do enjoy seeing an interparty fight and I would rather have her in the senate than Joe Miller.

For the third time in four election cycles, Alaska is part of the national political discussion.

Monday, October 13, 2014

BQHATERVWR 2.0




U.S. NAVY BIRTHDAY




"Resolved, That a swift sailing vessel, to carry ten carriage guns, and a proportionable number of swivels, with eighty men, be fitted, with all possible despatch, for a cruise of three months, and that the commander be instructed to cruize eastward, for intercepting such transports as may be laden with warlike stores and other supplies for our enemies, and for such other purposes as the Congress shall direct.

That a Committee of three be appointed to prepare an estimate of the expence, and lay the same before the Congress, and to contract with proper persons to fit out the vessel.

Resolved, that another vessel be fitted out for the same purposes, and that the said committee report their opinion of a proper vessel, and also an estimate of the expence."


A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE U.S.



Sunday, October 12, 2014

BROWN/JONES



One of the most iconic voices and actors of our time, James Earl Jones, sat down with PBS News Hour's Jeffery Brown to discuss his long career and his recent appearance on Broadway.

Interview provided below.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

SOUTHERN DEMOCRATS REVIVAL




Along with Kentucky, Democratic Senate candidates are trying to keep seats and possibly expand the map.

This is a tough cycle because Democrats have seven senators from states that went for Republican presidential candidates in 2008 and 2012. Two are declining to run for re-election (South Dakota and West Virginia) and one dropped out because of a plagiarism scandal that resulted in Montana Democrats scrambling for a replacement candidate.

The remaining four red state Democratic senators, one is in Alaska and the remaining three are in the south.

For starters the incumbents.

Monday, September 29, 2014

END THIS EXPERIMENT




On Sunday the NFL played the first of three regular season games at London's Wembley Stadium. The first game featured the Miami Dolphins defeating the Oakland Raiders 38-14. Next month the Detroit Lions and Atlanta Falcons head overseas for a kickoff that will be in the afternoon in London but a very early morning kickoff in the states. The last game happens the Sunday after Election Day when the Jacksonville Jaguars who have agreed to surrender a home game for the next two seasons to play in London against the Dallas Cowboys.

This experiment of playing a regular season NFL game overseas has to stop.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

WHAT'S THE MATTER WITH KANSAS?



Kansas has unexpectedly become the center of American politics in 2014.

Most of this election is focusing on the Senate battlegrounds of Colorado, North Carolina, and New Hampshire because two years ago those states were presidential battleground. Kansas was not one of those states.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

MISSED OPPORTUNITY



In my previous post about Kentucky I presented this scenario of a Republican controlled Senate without Senator McConnell.

Here is another scenario: Republicans end up with a 51-49 advantage.

One seat would have made all the difference between a 50-50 Democratic Senate and a combative Republican Senate adding to the dysfunction in Washington.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

CLUSTERFUCK





Normally I don't include profanities in my writings nor the titles of postings unless I feel there is a need for them.

This is one of those times.

Monday, September 15, 2014

SENATE BATTLE IN THE BLUEGRASS STATE



Wrap your head around this.

The Republican Party could win a majority in the Senate and Senator McConnell (KY, R) might not be majority leader.
 


Is this something out of House of Cards?        




Thursday, September 4, 2014

2014 NFL SEASON WEEK 1



Changes from last season: Kickoff is MOUNTAIN TIME and games airing in Denver area are noted with (DEN).