“I feel your scorn and I accept it.” ~ Jon Stewart, The Daily Show

 I Beg Your Barton . . . Just Because

   

“I always knew I shouldn’t have said that.” ~ Jon Stewart, The Daily Show

If it’s Friday, it must mean leftovers . . .

Boy oh boy. Where do I start? It’s been quite a week for inanity in action (say that three times in a row really fast: inanity in action inanity in action inanity in action). The Tea Party, the oil spill, the Republicans, the African lions, the Wal Mart shoppers . . .

  • Attention Wal Mart shoppers: In Salinas, California, police have arrested a couple who tried to sell their six-month-old baby outside a Wal Mart. Going price? Twenty-five dollars. Just how much meth does $25 buy? It goes without saying that the two were high when police got to their home.
  • In Kingsport, Tennessee, a woman being charged with DUI told police that she would test possible for a few drugs: Xanax, Lortab and Phenergan. Okay, let me just say right here that Lortab and Phenergan are on my daily medication list, and neither one of those affect me. Well, phenergan sometimes makes me sleepy. I once joked with my PCP that if I ever got stopped, I would have the police call him to verify that the medications found in my bloodstream are all prescribed . . .
  • The National Pork Board (yes, there is one) attested that they know that unicorn meat isn’t real. Wow. That’s a relief. Seems that Pork Board people got put out because an online retailer called ThinkGeek was selling fake unicorn meat and marketing it as “the new white meat.” The canned meat is described as being an “excellent source of sparkles. The Pork people sent a Cease and Desist. Seems they didn’t understand the whole concept of April Fool’s.
  • Word of warning: Don’t get on a pool float if you are smashed. Seems a man at a Tampa Beach in Florida passed out while on a float and drifted about a mile offshore into the Gulf of Mexico. The U. S. Coast Guard rescued the man after receiving a report from a boater who saw the unconscious man. I wonder if he got any oil spill on him . . .
  • Those whacky Arizonans are at it again: A restaurant in Phoenix is serving burgers made of African Lion meat. The restaurant ordered 10 pounds of the lion meat from a USDA-regulated, free-range farm in Illinois. Il Vinaio restaurant owner Cameron Selogie claims that he researched to make sure they were humane. I feel so much better now.
  • “For me it was just exciting to see fake news catching on like that. We don’t . . . you know, it’s interesting. I think we don’t make things up. We just distill it to, hopefully, its most humorous nugget. And in that sense it seems faked and skewed just because we don’t have to be subjective or pretend to be objective. We can just put it out there.” ~ Jon Stewart, The Daily Show
    • Senatorial candidate (R-KY) Rand Paul (so glad he’s running because he is great for fodder), has a bright new idea: He wants to  build a fence along the U.S.-Mexico border. Heard it before, right? Wrong. Paul wants the fence to be underground and electrified: “My plans include an underground electric fence, with helicopter stations to respond quickly to breaches of the border.”

    • Half-governor Sarah Palin must give back more than $386,000 in contributions to her Alaska Fund Trust (AFT), which she set up as a private legal defense fund while she was governor of Alaska. According to the AFT website, the trust is “the official legal fund created to defend Sarah Palin from an onslaught of political attacks launched against her, her Family, and colleagues (sic).” What’s wrong with that? Well apparently it’s a question of ethics: The trust website quite openly uses the governor’s position to solicit donations, and “There is probable cause to believe that Governor Palin used, or attempted to use, her official position for personal gain in violation of Alaska statute. Shame, shame.
    “We don’t consider ourselves equal opportunity anythings, because that’s not—you know, that’s the beauty of fake journalism. We don’t have to—we travel in fake ethics.” ~ Jon Stewart, The Daily Show
      Minnesota Loons
    • Speaking of politicians using things for personal gain, Eliot Spitzer, former governor of New York and Client No. 9 of the Emperor’s Club escort service, fancies himself a political pundit. Spitzer has been selected to star in CNN’s 8 p.m. time slot with Kathleen Parker, Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post columnist. The show will not be called “Crossfire,” the long-running show that originally featured Pat Buchanan and Tom Braden. Giving Spitzer the 8 p.m. slot formerly occupied by Campbell Brown has caused more than a few raised eyebrows. Felix Gillete and Reid Pillifant of Media Mob had this to say: “The truth is, a solid foundation in scandal has come to be a perfectly respectable starting point for any small-screen aspirant hoping to break through in an age of hundreds of channels and on-demand everything. Whatever else his qualifications, Mr. Spitzer has proven in recent times to have a knack for one of the more prized skills in cable news-namely, polarizing audiences.” Personally I just don’t like the guy.
    • In the 1990’s, Nevada GOP Senate candidate Sharron Angle belonged to Nevada’s Independent American Party. Noteworthy is that in 1994, the party placed a sixteen-page advertising insert in Nevada newspapers promoting an amendment to the state constitution that would explicitly permit discrimination against LGBT people by businesses and government. The anti-gay insert portrayed LGBT people as  “sodomites” and child-molesting, HIV-carrying, Hell-bound freaks and brazen perverts. How absolutely delightful.
    • Coming to a theater near you: One of my favorite politicians, Michele Bachmann, is slated to star in “Socialism: A Clear and Present Danger,” a documentary that explores the dangers of socialism. Bachmann is touted to be an anti-socialism expert. Must be the crazy eyes that give her such insight.
    “No. I’m not going to be your monkey.” ~ Jon Stewart, The Daily Show
    • And finally, Stephen Colbert took a look at Kentucky Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul’s dissident ophthalmology re-certification group, which Paul created after a dispute with the national board.

    Fiona Apple’s “Across the Universe”

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    Much ado about nothing in particular . . .

    Lake George Autumn by Georgia O'Keeffe 1927Lake George Autumn by Georgia O’Keeffe, 1927 

     

    Random thoughts on Saturday afternoon:

    Michele Bachmann close up
    Michele Bachmann's Crazy Eyes

    * Michele Bachmann of the one l, two n’s never ceases to amaze me. Just for fun, go to Daily KOS to see a selection of some of her more outlandish vids. I agree with Zirgar that her eyes are just plain scary.

    * Need to schedule a mammogram. When I hear men complain about their annual physicals, it makes me laugh. Have they ever had their private parts put into a machine and mashed into the size of a pancake? No? Then shut up about it already.

    * Latest version of treatment for my migraines: Massive doses of magnesium daily (working up to about 2000 mg) for prevention, and then Relpax and zanaflex for relief. We’ll see. Forgive me if I just don’t have any faith in migraine relief any more.

    * Any more. One word or two? One of my common mistakes. Also, always misspell minutiae.

    Red Rotary Telephone* When you are a teenager, getting your own telephone is a rite of passage, one that you anticipate eagerly. Once you have one, you use it all of the time. I remember that I had a deep red rotary telephone in my first apartment. I loved that phone. There’s something to be said for using telephones that are plugged into one place: You don’t have to listen to the person on the other end do things that you don’t want to hear . . .

    When you are an adult with obligations, the telephone is a pain in the butt. Have come to hate mine, and since it’s been turned off because I don’t have the money right now for the bill, I really don’t care.

    * Have I mentioned that I love pens, specifically, pens that write smoothly, not too fine of a point. Hate ballpoint pens. Remember using old black ballpoints from the Navy. Yuck. The ink would always get gloppy and stain my hands. But they smelled good. Isn’t it odd how you remember little bits of minutiae like that? Love rollerballs, especially in purple. Use purple to address all of my cards. Red for Christmas cards. Oh the small things that make one happy.

    * My friend Mari just had her birthday October 1st. I am so lax. I still have her birthday present from last year. How hard is it to go to the post office? Very if you are slowly turning into a complete homebody bordering on hermit. I really need to get out more.

    * Since I have no new books to read, I am raiding the storage bins for reading material. Picking books at random. Hoping enough time has passed that I don’t remember all of the plotline. Not complaining. Usually read books at least twice anyway.

    * Dreamed last night that someone sneaked into our home and cut off my hair. Woke up (in the dream) only to realize that almost all of my hair was gone. Symbolism? Hair equals power? Hair equals beauty? Or something much simpler: I need a haircut.

    Georgia O'Keeffe by Alfred Stieglitz 1920
    Georgia O'Keeffe by Alfred Stieglitz (1920)

    * Watched a thoroughly depressing episode of 20/20: Albinism and the growing trend in Tanzania of killing albinos for body parts to be used by witch doctors in concoctions for power and long life. Visit Under The Same Sun website for more information about this very real, very tragic situation.

    * Also watched the movie about Georgia O’Keeffe starring Joan Allen and Jeremy Irons (as Alfred Stieglitz). Actually very well made for a television movie. O’Keeffe was an incredible talent and, gasp, a freethinking woman well before her time. Her art never fails to amaze me.

    * I want to have a bumper sticker made that reads “Danger: I am a Freethinking Woman.”

    * I desperately need to clean my desk. There is not one square inch of surface that is not covered by paper or something that does not need to be there. I have resolved, though, that I will clean my desk when Corey cleans off the dining room table, which he has somehow claimed as his desk. Kind of defeats the goal of sitting down together for dinner.

    * Shakes is currently positioned directly adjacent to my feet. Normally when I am at the computer he sleeps off to the right. Very clingy today.

    * Too incredible not to be true: I actually had to reschedule my doctor’s appointment on Friday because I hurt too much to get out of bed. Now that’s pathetic: too sick to go to the doctor. I despair of what is happening to me.

    * I want to see the new movie 2012, although not for the same reasons that Zirgar wants to see it. First, I love John Cusack because he has one of those faces that is perfect for disaster movies: What? Me? In case you’ve been living in a cave, December 21, 2012 is date on which the Mayan calendar ends; hence, all of the predictions of the end of the world, the apocalypse. I wonder if the Heaven’s Gate people will finally be shuffled into their UFO. I mean, they’ve been waiting since 1997. Sorry if I sound glib, but doomsday predictions tend to make the cynic in me take over.

    Eamonn Summer 2009
    Eamonn Summer 2009

    * I miss eldest son. He works all of the time, and when he isn’t at work, he’s with his girlfriend. He stops in to put his dirty clothes in the hamper and play a little XBox. Still hoping that plans to start college in January are a go.

    * If I am to believe all of the ads, then collagen from the sea is the best thing for keeping my skin looking youthful. Youthful. Such a subjective term. Do I want to look like I did when I was a teenager? No. In my 20’s or 30’s? Only as far as my weight is concerned. I’ve earned my looks. I haven’t been through all of my trials and tribulations for nothing. For now, I’ll continue to be thankful for my good genes and Filipino skin which does not begin to show wrinkles for a long time (if I am like my father), and a touch of Oil of Olay Regenerist daily.

    Gummi Bears
    Gummi Bears

    * I am craving Gummi Bears. Isn’t that a weird thing to crave? But they’re such a great snack—small, sweet, chewable. I know. I really need to get out more.

    * Stats: I’m starting to obsess over them again. I had stopped doing that, and it was much less stressful. I mean, I made my goal of 100,000 hits by October 1st, which marks just about a year since I’ve been blogging seriously. But recently, I saw a nice jump in hits, and I began to look at my stats again. Now, if I drop one day, I begin to obsess: Is my blog boring? Do people not like what I’m writing? Should I write about politics more? Should I write about politics less? Should I stop obsessing? That’s about the only question to which I can state a firm yes.

    Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera . . .

    Reya's Jilted Rose
    Reya's Jilted Rose from After the Gold Puppy

    I have set for myself a goal to post everyday in October, to try to get back to my daily posting. My reasons for doing this have less to do with blogging and more to do with trying to get back into some kind of active schedule. When I was writing at least two to three hours everyday, I felt better: emotionally psychologically. I know that I need an outlet, and I have learned from many years of trial and error that writing is the very best outlet for me to use to exercise my mind. Reading does come in at a close second.

    The point is, though, that I know what I need to do to help myself, but sometimes, it really is much harder than it would seem. I am well aware that part of the reason for my being lax in the past months has a great deal to do with my state of mind, which has been, shall we say, less than optimum. But it’s kind of a self-fulfilling prophesy: I don’t write because I feel too depressed to write, but if I don’t write, then I feel depressed. Hate those Catch-22’s of life (great book, by the way, much better than the movie, which was hilarious).

    Hence, my declared decision to write and post daily again. All of that being said, there’s a very good chance that the Internet service is going to go away fairly soon, for obvious reasons. But I have a plan . . . I’ll write my posts in Word, save them up, and then post all of them once I can get service back. Why I am I bothering to mention this? I don’t know. Maybe because I’ve made this declaration, and I don’t want to appear to be wishy washy when my posting stops (even though I can be wishy washy).

    That’s about all for now. I was trying to think of the perfect music to accompany this rambling entry. Couldn’t decide between “Save Me” or “Humpty Dumpty” by Aimee Mann. Found a vid with both. How cool.

     

     

    More later. Peace.

    Brutal Honesty in the face of Inane Lunacy

     We All Live In A Yellow Submarine

     We all live in a yellow submarine, yellow submarine, yellow submarine . . .

      

    And our friends are all on board,

    Many more of them live next door

    To those of you who care, I know that I have been lax in my blogging of late. It comes from being a teenager and passing along teenage angst and teenage idiocy to said teenagers’ mumsy. That I can still string sentences together on the approaching graduation of elder son and end of the year IB work of younger son speaks volumes of my ability to have courage under fire.

    That being said, I decided that I would dedicate my afternoon to catching up on reading my blogrolls as I have been waiting eagerly for new posts on some of my favorite blogs and haven’t had time to peruse them. What’s wonderful about belonging to a blogging community is that you get the chance to stay on top of things all over the world. For example, my friend in Australia not only writes about her life, but she also shares political and social information. One blog is by a researcher in the UK who is a newly-published author, and the conversations that ensue on his blog are always enlightening and simultaneously hilarious.

    Of course, a visit to Janson Jones’s Floridana Alaskiana made my day as he has been updating his blog with photographs of his recent trip to Florida. I plan to do a feature post on these beautiful images in a few days, but feel free to visit his blog and check out his masterful photographic skills.

    Dropped by White Orchid where my lovely Australian friend has been updating everyone on the loss of her poor aunt and the travails of traveling to a funeral. Maureen’s writing is always so inviting that it’s as if we are sitting at the table together sharing a cup of tea.

    And then I made the usual rounds to everyone else, but what really caught my interest today were the posts that I read on three of my favorite left-leaning political blogs: Willpen’s World, Zirgar’s Fresh New Brain Squeezin’s, and The Mudflats.

    During the 08 election, I spent most of my time writing about political topics, especially the fractured logic that seems to rule the far right, but once Obama was elected and we took back the Senate, I have tried to go back to writing about various topics, from my dogs, to my kids, to photography, to poverty, with stops in between on important issues that I feel I must answer in some way. After reading several of today’s posts and articles, I decided that today was one of those days on which I needed to focus on issues that won’t go away and the people who continue to beat the carcass of the horse that has been on America’s front lawn for about three decades.

    Perhaps the best theme for my post would be Ship of Fools, but I decided to use another one of my old favorites: The Beatles’ “Yellow Submarine”

    And the band begins to play (cue horns)

    Ultimately, I felt that I just had to do a Lola’s List of Brutally Honest Observations. Let the finger-pointing begin: 

    Finger PointingLet me not beat around the bush about this: Rush Limbaugh is a racist, sexist, anti-abortion, far-right conservative Republican. However, that does not qualify him for the Supreme Court, no matter how much he spouts off about Obama’s nominee. Rush needs a gentle reminder that one must have a law degree at the very minimum to sit on the highest court in the land, and unfortunately, or in this case, fortunately, Rush failed ballroom dancing. 

    Michele Bachmann (of the one l) is still running around the halls of the Capitol making outrageous claims about subjects of which she has absolutely no knowledge, or at least, not knowledge in the traditional sense (you know, book learning and knowing when to get out of the rain kind of knowledge).  I’m not even going to touch the fallacies in her pronouncements about carbon dioxide being a natural product of the earth (even though I could go on for pages about natural products of the earth that, while they are natural, are also harmful and deadly, like arsenic). My suggestion to the Minnesota Congresswoman is that she go buy herself about 10 more truckloads of Mountain Dew so that she can keep C-Span electrified with her stand-up routine. What’s that? She’s serious? No really? Really . . . Ladies and Gentleman, I give you Sarah Palin’s running mate in 2012. 

    Bill O’Reilly . . . what can I say? For years the man carried on a personal war with Dr. George Tiller, the doctor who was recently murdered while serving as an usher at his church’s Sunday services, the doctor who was murdered by a fanatic, the likes of whom I will address my next remarks. But let’s get back to Bill, shall we? Over the years, O’Reilly has vilified Tiller with statements such as [Tiller] “destroys fetuses for just about any reason right up until the birth date for $5,000.” 

    O’Reilly has also compared Tiller of being guilty of  “Nazi stuff” (June 8, 2005). The snarky pundit also said in June of 2007 that there was “No question Dr. Tiller has blood on his hands.” O’Reilly did not put the gun in Scott Roeder’s hands, but O’Reilly did mark George Tiller as “Tiller the Baby Killer” again and again and again. This self-serving spewer of vitriol bears the burden of placing a target on George Tiller’s chest.

    Vodpod videos no longer available.
     

    To Sean “The Manatee” Hannity I offer the following advice: Please go to an ENT sooner rather than later so that you can get your hearing checked. It’s just becoming a drinking game now to see how many times you can misconstrue the words on a television clip featuring President Obama or any other liberal. For example, on June 3 of this year, you had the stones to claim that President Obama called the U.S. a Muslim nation when he addressed representatives of the Turkish government on April 6. Here is what President Obama actually said as compared to your interpretation 

    President Obama: If you actually took the number of Muslim Americans, we’d be one of the largest Muslim countries in the world.

    Sean Hannity: He honors the national day of prayer behind closed doors. Now, on his Middle East apology tour, the President calls the U.S. a “Muslim nation.”

    President Obama: We do not consider ourselves a Christian nation, or a Jewish nation, or a Muslim nation. We consider ourselves a nation of citizens, who are bound by ideals

    Sean Hannity: The same president who insists the U.S. is not a Christian nation is now calling us a Muslim nation.

    Really, it’s embarrassing just to mention your name any more, at least for me. I cannot do it without snorting my Pepsi up my nose and making a big mess all over my computer screen. 

    A word on Nat Turner. Who is Nat Turner you ask? Well, I’m glad you asked that because I didn’t know about this fine human being until Starshine, a commenter on WillPen’s blog left a link to a Daily KOS article on Turner. Seems that Turner, a self-avowed white nationalist and white supremacist from North Bergen, New Jersey has been arrested for “asking his audience to kill two elected officials and an official from a regulatory agency.”  The article by Pavlov Dog reveals that Capitol police Chief Michael J. Fallon said that “Mr. Turner’s comments are above and beyond the threshold of free speech . . . He is inciting others through his website to commit acts of violence and has created fear and alarm. He should be held accountable for his conduct.” The offending comments? Get a load of this: 

    “It is our intent to foment direct action against these individuals personally,” the blog stated. “These beastly government officials should be made an example of as a warning to others in government: Obey the Constitution or die . . . If any state attorney, police department or court thinks they’re going to get uppity with us about this; I suspect we have enough bullets to put them down too.”  

    You don’t say? That just warms the cockles of my heart. Except for the whole killing and putting people down with bulletss part. Unless I’m much mistaken, those are the words a terrorist would use, and let’s not soften it with the modifier domestic. A terrorist is a terrorist, and adding the word domestic does not alter that fact, nor does it make the rhetoric less sinister. Mr. Turner is exactly where he deserves to be. Good one on Chief Fallon.

    And to be fair, I must not forget the Governator (yes, I do realize that Governator is what most people call Arnold Schwarzenegger; however, I have been calling Palin this since the election; you see, not matter what, she’ll be back). No matter how much I may want to ignore the aspiring presidential candidate and former beauty queen, I must not, for it seems that some on the far right side of sanity still regard her as charismatic, charming, and a real contender for 2012 (oh yes, pleez……….). The Mudflats had a glorious article on the Governator that I must share with you: “‘Screw Political Correctness.” Sarah Palin In Her Own Words.” Trust me, you do not want to miss this wonderfully insightful piece.

    Sky of blue, and sea if green, in our yellow submarine

    And now, since I have spent the better part of the evening consorting with the other side, I will cleanse my palate with an aperitif of the eloquent Keith Olbermann, whose insights are always spot on, especially when it comes to Rupert Murdoch’s gang:

     

     

    As always, there will be more later. Peace.

    I just wanted to say for the record that I have been trying to fix the screwed up formatting in this blog for the last four hours. I have no idea what I did, or how I did it, but everytime I read it, sentences are moved around, some starting in the middle, the first paragraph ending up after my signature. I don’t know what the hell was/is going on, the wine, the lack of carbon dioxide to my brain . . . whatever. Just let me know if things are seriously out of whack when you read it because I can’t look at it one more time.

    Seen, Heard, Read

    News from the Road, If I Were On The Road

    What’s Snoo?

    • Unemployment figures for the month of October: 240,000, which means that Americans have lost approximately 1,000,000 jobs so far this year
    • Claims from aides in McCain camp: Sarah Palin thinks that Africa is a country (no . . . this is is a joke, right?)
    • Claims from Sarah Palin: The most that she ever asked for was an occasional diet Dr. Pepper (okay, governor)
    • Republicans want Joe Lieberman to caucus with them; Dems don’t want to lose a Senate vote since we are so close to the all-powerful 60. I say we should buy him a new wardrobe and let Joe the Plumber decide.
    • Joe the Plumber who hates Socialism has benefitted from that entitlement program called “Welfare” on two occasions. Hmmmm
    • W. has given permission for uranium drilling within three miles of the Grand Canyon and the Colorado River, which provides drinking water for three states. Way to go George! Just when I thought that you couldn’t do anything more asinine, you go and prove me wrong. Who needs a natural monument that is eons old? Who needs fresh drinking water? What a bunch of sissies. You show ’em. After all, you’re going to be far, far away in a land called Oz.
    • Michele Bachmann, who just weeks ago was calling for McCarthy like hearings into anti-American liberals in the Senate had this to say about Barack Obama’s presidential win: She was“extremely grateful that we have an African-American who has won this year.”
    • Gay marriage was defeated in California, but the defeat is not sitting well with the Gay/Lesbian community, as it shouldn’t. Expect to hear a lot more about this issue.
    • Since President-elect Obama’s election, the Iraqis have been more willing to sign the security agreement that they had been stalling. The Iraqis were worried that the agreement for withdrawal of forces by December 30, 2011 would not be honored by a Republican White House. However, they are more willing to negotiate an agreement with the upcoming change in the White House. The new agreement also prevents the launching of attacks of other countries from Iraqi soil (such as Syria).

      eugene-allen
      Eugene Allen (Clark/Washington Post)
    • And finally, if you want to know who really makes the White House run, please read this incredible story about Eugene Allen. If this doesn’t touch your heart, then you are made of stone. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2008361980_webbutler07.html

    And Now a Word From Our Sponsor

    This time last week we were getting ready to watch the returns from what would become one of the most historic elections in our country. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to participate in this process. I only wish that I could take it a step further and apply for a job with the new administration. That would be like something out of a dream, to participate in an administration that is going to make sweeping changes. I mean, I know that it’s going to be a really hard row to hoe.

    The problems that this country faces are enormous: Unemployment is creeping up every month, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it hit double digits. Our three major car companies are going under and need major help. This is probably going to be one of the worst holiday seasons for retail in a dozen years. I know that I won’t be out there spending my usual amount. That’s for sure. One of the only companies to turn a profit last quarter was Wal Mart; even Target recorded a loss. And we all know how I feel about Wal Mart. Everyone is hurting.

    So I don’t delude myself that President-elect Obama is going to take office and miracles are going to happen. His first year is going to be hell, and there are going to be a lot of people pointing fingers and saying “I told you so,” because there is so much blame, and he is the easiest target. But I also have no doubts that given enough time, his plans can work.

    The best laid plans of mice and men, and all of that. Everything worth having is worth waiting for, at least that’s what the cereal boxes and fortune cookies say. I just hope that when the finger pointing starts, and the naysayers begin with their doom and gloom, they remember how this country has felt for the past eight years, how as a nation, we have collectively lost hope, lost faith, lost our status as a global leader,

    And so, like the Eugene Allen’s of the world, we must remember to put our coats on one sleeve at a time, and go to work, and do our jobs, and carry on, and give this man who we believed in enough to put into office a chance to do his job.

    Here endeth the lesson. More later. Peace.

    Here We Go Again

    What Makes Liberals Anti-American?

    Virginia Is Just Plain Screwed

    I’m confused. Which part of Virginia is communist, and which part is anti-American, and which part is the real Virginia? Do I live in the communist part or the anti-American part or the real part? Remember when Senator John McCain’s brother Joe said that Northern Virginia was “communist country”? And then recently, Nancy Totempole said that outside of Virginia, in the real part, we would be willing to accept John McCain’s message. But then Sarah Palin implied that if we weren’t from small towns, then we were somehow anti or un-American.

    I’m so confused. Someone needs to tell me so that I can immediately begin to act in the proper way. Or maybe I’ll just act like an anti-American communist so that I’ll have the whole thing covered. I guess, in light of all of the slanderous accusations that are being tossed around, I probably fall into all of the negative categories anyway since I’m a feminist (ooh, bad word), liberal, left-wing Democrat, which means that I’m obviously an unpatriotic, un-American, anti-American, socialist, communist, wrong-thinking baaaaaad person.

    Maybe it’s because I watched “Aladdin,” which as Michele Bachmann pointed out, is full of heresy and all of that good stuff.

    News From North Carolina

    The Associated Press reports that 63-year-old Republican Representative Robin Hayes of North Carolina told a crowd at a Republican rally,  “Liberals hate real Americans that work and accomplish and achieve and believe in God.” Hayes later claimed not to recall making the statement and said that “it came out the wrong way.”

    Is he related to Jesse Helms?

    And What’s Up With Florida?

    When Senator Mel Martinez (R-Florida) was asked before what his thoughts were on Obama, Martinez described him personally as “a great guy,” but politically too far left for his tastes. Martinez, who is half-Cuban, has also said that  he believes that “we should be in a post-racial environment” and has openly disagreed with McCain campaign manager Rick Davis for saying that Senator Obama has “played the race card, and that he (Obama) played it from the bottom of the deck. It’s divisive, negative, shameful and wrong” (see this link for article http://marcambinder.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/08/mel_martinez_race_card_not_pla.php ).

    What a difference a little prodding from the right can make. On Saturday, October 18 at a gathering of Florida’s top Republican leaders, Martinez compared Obama’s economic tax plans to those in Castro’s Cuba: “It didn’t work so good down there. That’s socialism, that’s communism, that’s not what Americanism is about” (OrlandoSentinel.com). Martinez is echoing the latest battle cry from McCain’s camp: At her rally in New Mexico on Sunday, the governator responded to questions as to whether or not Obama’s tax plan is socialist by saying,

    “There are socialist principles to that, yes. Taking more from a small business or small business owners or from a hard working family and then redistributing that money according to a politician’s priorities . . . There are hints of socialism in there and that’s why I don’t fault or discredit Joe the Plumber for bringing that up asking if that is socialism.”

    Well if the knowledgeable Joe the Plumber says so, then it must be so.

    Speaking of That Dead Horse You Won’t Let Go of Governor Palin . . .

    I will if you will, otherwise I might have to begin to delve into Senator McCain’s six degrees of separation from real live domestic terrorists in the anti-Castro front, the Omega 7, who were responsible for a number of bombings and killings in the 1970s (whisper . . . and Joe Lieberman, that guy who is always standing behind McCain, has promised to get them pardons) . . .

    And then there is G. Gordon Liddy, my favorite psycho. Please, I could write a page on him alone. Let’s make a deal. The first mention of Jeremiah Wright, and I’ll go there. Okay?

    And Just When You Thought He Was Done

    By Kent Roberts

    Let’s give props where props are due: A big hand to W. for staying in character right until the end. I knew that he had it in him. Gitmo Bay? Doing the right thing? Pshaw. Why on earth would he want to go and do something like that and spoil his record, especially when President Buchanan is pulling so hard for him right now. If W. just continues on this path, surely his legacy as the country’s worst president in history is a fait accompli, and Buchanan can breathe a sigh of relief. Doing something positive about the cesspool that is Guantanamo Bay would only show a spark of humanity and the end of eight long years that have proven that even a walking, talking imbecile of a human being can graduate from Yale if his daddy knows enough people.

    But graduating from Yale doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be worthy to hold the office of president, any more than being governor of an oil rich state qualifies you to be vice president, no matter how much you want to pretend that the Constitution gives you capabilities exceeding those which the Founding Fathers saw fit to bestow upon that position. But hey, you can take your Todders, and your newly-outfitted and styled kids home (thank you taxpayers; that’s called sharing the wealth), to Alaska with your flute and live in your illegally-built home once all of this is over and see just how fondly your citizenry embraces you.

    But enough of that Sturm and Drang. It’s late, and I grow weary.

    More later. Peace.

    Today’s Category: Gallimaufry for $1,000, Alex

    “Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.” (Rudyard Kipling)

    “Words, Words, Words” (Hamlet)

    I love words, and I love people who use words well. Obviously, the converse is true. I shudder when I hear people mangle the English language. Oh, not speakers of English as a second language. It really pisses me off when I get one of those sanctimonious e-mails that rails on people about how this is America, so everyone should speak English. Didn’t these people learn history in school? You know, the parts about how we were all immigrants at one time? Believe it or not, when America was founded, everyone did not speak English. Hello out there.

    My father, a first generation Filipino spoke fluent English with an accent. His grammar was impeccable, but as he got older, it was harder to understand him sometimes, and it infuriated me when people at fast food places used to act as if he were speaking in a foreign language when they were speaking as if they had just finished the third grade. (I never learned Tagalog, his native dialect. I don’t know why. I wish that I had; I wish that mine had been a house that was bilingual when I was growing up, but it wasn’t.) I envy people who speak two or three languages with ease.

    But what about the people who have lived in this country their whole lives and cannot speak English properly? Is it the fault of public schools? Do I just have to get over things like “me and Joe are goin down to the 7/11 to gets some beer. Hows bout you?”

    I know that there are regional dialects and that there are phrases that go in and out of style, but what about basic English, like using the word an before words beginning with a vowel? Is that too much to ask? I don’t think that an expectation of basic grammar is being a snob, or that it’s “my English teacher showing” as I’ve been told. My family is used to being corrected, and I try not to do it in front of other people, but I don’t want my children going out into the world to start their careers, sounding as if they have no idea how to communicated beyond a sixth-grade level.

    “Those words freedom and opportunity do not mean a license to climb upwards by pushing other people down.” (Franklin D. Roosevelt)

    I have managed to put Rush Limbaugh out of my life for a number of years now. Several years ago, Limbaugh used to rile me so terribly that I just wanted to tear my hair out every time that I heard about something he had said. So I made a conscious decision to stop reading anything about Limbaugh or his show. I found that it was better for my blood pressure, and eventually, he faded from my consciousness, that is, until today.

    I mentioned the interview between Limbaugh and the governator in a previous post in which I cited her quote about having “nothing to lose,” but as I was concentrating on Palin, Limbaugh did not settle into my memory cells. However, earlier today I watched a clip from MSNBC in which Andrea Mitchell references the toad croaking about how General Colin Powell’s endorsement is “totally about race.” Once again, toady boy is showing the depth of his ability to reason. If Powell were going to endorse Obama purely on race, why didn’t he do it months ago? Why did he wait until two weeks before the election? Perhaps, methinks, the man who many thought would be the first black man in the White House, was waiting to see how the two candidates reacted to the Wall Street catastrophe, how well they did in the debates, how they were doing on the campaign trail, who they chose as their running mates—all points that Powell mentioned in his “Meet the Press” appearance in a very cogent statement (as opposed to Limbaugh’s limited un-intellectual rant into the microphone). But of course, this is the same Limbaugh who told an African American caller to his talk show to “take that bone out of your nose and call me back.”

    Ah Rush, I haven’t missed you at all . . .

    “We are dancing on a volcano.” (Comte de Salvandy)

    Last Friday, I watched one of the most frightening examples of ignorance in action on “Hardball with Chris Matthews.” Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota claimed that Barack Obama and his wife Michelle  held anti-American views and couldn’t be trusted in the White House. But she did not stop there. She called for the media to investigate other members of Congress: “I wish the American media would take a great look at the views of the people in Congress and find out if they are pro-America or anti-America,” she said. I don’t think this country has heard statements like this since the McCarthy era.

    Senator Joseph McCarthy lent his name to that era by making a speech in 1950 in West Virginia in which he produced a piece of paper that he claimed contained the names of over 200 people who were communists who were working for the U.S. State Department. McCarthy’s strongest supporters were far right radicals. One of his most vocal opponents was the famous journalist Edward R. Murrow, who wrote in 1953,

    We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men.

    Please, do tell Representative Bachmann in all of your infinite wisdom, exactly how does one determine if someone is pro-America or anti-America?

    “One can prove or refute anything at all with words.” (Anton Chekhov)

    Just for grins, I thought that I’d list some of my favorite words, words that I love to roll around on my tongue but don’t often get to use in regular conversation, except perhaps in these blogs:

    impinge, hoi polloi, salmagundi, impugn, verity, ignoble, alchemy, vox populi, gendarme, chasm, zeitgeist, xenophobia, pugnacious, putrid, curmudgeon, gravitas, spurious, obstreperous, fawning, kowtow, poesy, albeit, sublime, spate, predilection, soupçon, ubiquitous, reprobate, vichyssoise, apostate, propitious, precipice, burgeoning, fodder, fulcrum, obsequious, and finally apoplexy.

    This is just the short list. My family is continually accusing me of using words just to confuse them. I’m just trying to broaden their horizons. After all, I think that everyone should be able to insert obstreperous and obsequious into a conversation at least once in his or her life. Don’t you?

    I just wish that I could find a way to work platypus into the conversation more often . . .

    More later. Peace.