Rich Galen
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First, the good news:

Over the course of the past 13+ years, I may have mentioned - once or twice - that I attended a small, liberal arts college in Southeastern Ohio named Marietta College, Marietta, Ohio 45750.

If this is new info for you, let me also briefly tell you that it took about 7½ years to get my bachelor's degree which, as this was just after electricity had been invented, was in Speech. At the time there was no major available in Mass Communications.

I only tell you that to tell you this: Yesterday the mighty Marietta College Pioneer baseball team won its fifth - FIFTH - national championship when it took the final game in the 2011 Division III baseball tournament against Chapman College (Orange, CA) in a nail-biter - 18-5.

To be fair, that was the second game of a double-header; Chapman having spanked Marietta 15-4 in the first game.

Marietta ends its season 47-4 which is a winning percentage of .922. Five national championships in D-3 baseball is an NCAA record.

As luck would have it, I think .922 was also my freshman year GPA, hence the 7½ years.

Go Blue!

NEW TOPIC

The U.S. House took a vote on raising the debt limit last night and, to no one's surprise, it failed. According to Reuters:

By a vote of 318-97, the chamber overwhelmingly rejected President Barack Obama's call to increase the $14.3 trillion debt limit without conditions.

According to the Office of the Clerk, there are 240 Republican Members of the U.S. House. If the debt limit increase failed with 318 voting against, 78 Democrats voted against it, too.

Why would Speaker John Boehner go through the charade of holding a debt limit vote on May 31 even though, according to the Washington Examiner,

"Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner has warned Congress that is must vote to raise the nation's $14.3 trillion debt ceiling by Aug. 2?"

Because this morning, at about 10 AM, the entire GOP House Conference is trouping down to the White House to meet - for the first time since taking control of the Chamber after the elections last November - with President Barack Obama.

SIDEBAR

Republicans in the U.S. House and Senate call themselves a "Conference." Democrats call themselves a "Caucus."

I don't know why, but that's the way it is.

END SIDEBAR

At the White House this morning, Boehner can point to the vote and help Obama understand there will not be an increase in the debt limit without the significant spending cuts the GOP Members (and, apparently, 40 percent of House Democrats) are demanding.

Pretty good political ploy.

LAST TOPIC

Sarah Palin is playing the national press corps like a she is Itzak Perlman and they are a Stradivarius violin.

As the national political conversation has moved to real candidates who are really running for the GOP nomination, Palin was not being mentioned.

So, she got herself a bus; announced it is not a campaign bus; and successfully conned the national press to chase after her as she rode a motorcycle in Washington, DC; shopped in Gettysburg, PA, and had dinner at a pizza joint in New York City with Donald Trump.

Some months ago during the Q & A portion of a speech I was going through the likely candidates and I left Palin off my list. A woman challenged me saying she attracts large crowds, who want to see her, and want to hear what she has to say.

I said that was true, but was also an accurate description of the appeal of Elvis Presley and he was never going to be President of the United States, either.

Sarah Palin is a great personality. She was not a good Governor of Alaska, she was not a good candidate for VP, and she will not even attempt to be a candidate for the Republican nomination for the 2012 election.

Palin might not know much about history, or geography, but she knows all she needs to about self-promotion.

I wonder if she taught The Donald anything over a slice of pepperoni.

On the Secret Decoder Ring today: Links to the coverage of the Marietta College national championship, the debt limit vote, Itzak Pearlman and Strativarius, and the Palin-Trump meet over pizza.

Also a pretty good Mullfoto of a pre-thunderstorm sky and a Catchy Caption of the Day.

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Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at Mullings.com.