Today I Learned…

…that in his first few days in office, President-elect Barack Obama will enact several changes that will, symbolically and otherwise, undo some of the injustices and wrongs committed during (and even before) the W. Bush administration.  He is reportedly going to close down the prison at Guantanamo Bay, ban all interrogation techniques that could be described as torture, and rescind Bush’s bar on funding going to the creation of stem cell lines and to overseas public health organizations which provide abortion counseling (as opposed to the woefully inadequate abstinence-only programs).  What’s more, and this is what made me the happiest, he will end the Clinton-era “compromise” policy known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” which bans gays and lesbians from openly serving in the United States military.

And people wonder why I voted for the guy.  Actually, nobody really wonders that.  But I appreciate his commitment to making these changes, even if they are nowhere near the most pressing issues facing him as he takes the oath of office on Tuesday.  Obviously the economy and the war are going to be the top priorities.  That goes without saying.  But there were so many little injustices that have taken place and root over the last eight years (and yes, I realize that DADT was put into place under Clinton that get less attention then illegally invading a sovereign nation and destroying perhaps the most robust economy in the history of the world through negligence and legalized theft.

EDIT: It occurs to me that I did not provide a link to where I found this information.  So here you go.  What?  You thought it would be an American news outlet?  How silly of you.

Today I Learned…

…that President-elect Barack Obama won Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional district, giving him one extra electoral vote.  Check out that link to fivethirtyeight for more analysis and commentary.

Today I Learned…

…what a Dutch rudder is.  I’d like to think this is a vaguely family-friendly blog, so if you want to know what that is, either Google it or go see Zack and Miri Make a Porno.

Update: Virgil Goode currently leads Tom Perriello in the Virginia 5th district by 98 votes.  I’m not sure what the law is in VA about automatic recounts… anyone?

Today I Learned…

…that I am faarrrrrr too white to sing Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m Yours)” at karaoke.  I really wanted to sing an Obama campaign song, and the DJ didn’t have “City of Blinding Lights” by U2, which I actually could have come close to pulling off.

Nope.  Just wasn’t going to happen.

ALSO: Tom Perriello currently leads Virgil Goode in the VA 5th District by 102 votes.

Today I Learned…

…well, you know.  I don’t even have words for this.  This is the most historic day of my admittedly short life to date.

Also: keep track of Prop 8 in CA (go no!) and the VA 5th Congressional District, where Democrat Tom Perriello leads incumbent Republican Virgil Goode by fewer than 2,000 votes with 99% of precincts reporting.

Today I Learned…

…that Charles Barkley, Basketball Hall of Famer, the Round Mound of Rebound, and one of the most unintentionally funny people to ever walk the face of this good Earth, is planning to run for governor of his home state of Alabama in 2014.  Got this from an interview he did with CNN’s Campbell Brown (transcript here) — he also talks about the presidential race, racism in America, the possibility of the Bradley Effect being a factor in this election, and other things as well.  It’s a decent read — the part about his political aspirations is down at the bottom.

But seriously, can you imagine Sir Charles as a governor?  He says, “I can’t screw up Alabama… We are number 48 in everything and Arkansas and Mississippi aren’t going anywhere.”  His biggest priority would be education, which I can definitely get behind.

Today I Learned…

…that the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune have never endorsed a Democrat for the White House.

…until today.