As this endless primary season winds down to a close

and after all those months of

"Oh I like this one," and

"He's not (she's not) so bad -- could be a good president,"and

"What a doofus" and

"I dunno know. They all seem to lack something."

(I guess the advantage of an excruciatingly long primary season is that the sound bite supply and the short phony smiles wear off and we get to see more of what they really may be like -- unless the real person underneath is ALSO an act)

So, what comes to mind is the poetically succinct statement by a poet who never backed off of a controversial principle (i.e, not a whole lot of people in the USA who opposed entry into WWII):

"As far and deep as a tiger's frown, so my greetings, O leaders of the world, to you."

Kenneth Patchen

Or as the late Arlen Riley Wilson put it, more succinctly if a bit less elegantly:

"The Scum Rises to the top."




There he goes again.

John McCain said it yesterday, the same way he and all the other Iraq war devotees do ---

"We will NEVER surrender in Iraq."

So my question is this:

"Who are they talking about? Who would they surrender to? The Liberal Media?"

They might LOSE this poorly planned venture into Human Sacrifice in Mesopotamia, but SURRENDER?

And when they lose, they will, as usual (and as they did after Vietnam) blame the loss on those who advised against diving into the quicksand in the first place, because -- like the recalcitrants in the audience who would have let Tinkerbell die -- THEY DIDN'T BELIEVE. (As if the Marines just can't fight if the folks at home don't believe and clap their hands.)

As to McCain and his "great experience:"

Ok, this is harsh, but the fact that he exhibited amazing courage and devotion to his men and to our country, doesn't make him an expert on the war in Vietnam. And that's in no way intended to diminish his courage and integrity. But war really isn't a religion, and while courage and integrity are important, it takes knowledge of strategy and tactics, and proper weaponry and proper training, and -- the bottom line -- a civilian administration consisting of draft dodgers and on person whose combat experience is limited to partial (and incompleted) service in the Air National Guard.

I don't call them "Chicken hawks" because I don't know that they were afraid (of combat).

I call them "Rec Room Patriots" because they were just too goddamn precious to serve the way all the others did and the only thing they were afraid of was losing their situation of privilege.

Back to Senator McCain: he actually saw less of that war than anyone who watched it at home on TV, not to mention the senators and congressmen who actually did service there: John Kerry and Bob Kerry and Hagel and Jim Robb and Jack Murtha and many others, most of them Democrats.

He fought from the air and then was captured and spent hideous hell-time isolated from the actual war. So he didn't come to the same conclusion the other did, the ones who were -- as their favorite cliche goes -- "boots on the ground" -- he never saw that it was an insanely vicious waste of lives. He's still insisting that patriotism means waving the flag and killing dark-skinned people. And pissing away the lives of those men and women who are willing to wear the uniform today.

If there's ANY Manchurian candidate this time around (and I don't believe there is) it would have to be John McCain.

But, of course, the nightmare comes from the fact that he DID surrender.



This is a comment I posted on answering the musical question "Why don't those hillbillies like Obama?" posed in an article.

..for people who don't read

What liberals like me don't seem to get (a clue -- it's the same reason so many men - a more than a few women -- don't get Hillary Clinton, so while this is specifically about how people see Obama, the same principle applies to THAT CLINTON WOMAN).

It took many years for my light bulb to go on -- the short form of this is that urban liberal types look JUST AS weird and exotic (and therefore viewed with a wariness) and the Appalachians and Suthreners do to us.

I remember my wife coming home from her job when we lived in Houston, where we'd recently arrived (we were both raised in Pennsylvania), and saying "I just realized we were TAUGHT to consider people with that accent ("Y'all... etc) as dumb.

Hell, Lenny Bruce talked about it in the 60's, that LBJ had a mind as keen as Schopenauer's, but as soon as he opened his mouth ("Mah fellow 'mericans...") us Yankees said "Hell, he don't know NOTHIN' He can't even talk good like us."

Nearly every white person in America has been taught since childhood to have some combination of fear and dislike for black men (Eunuchoid-looking Cutie-pies like Gary Coleman are ok, though.) So make that adult virile black men, teenage or older. And it seems to take every day of your life to shed it and KEEP shedding it. When I told this to a neighbor of mine, a black man from Jamaica, he said in surprise, "You're the first white man who ever admitted that." To which I could only say "Most white men don't actually know that."

We have been fortunate over the years in that my car's engine exploded while in Houston and it took every cent we had to fix it, meaning we were finding work to get back to San Francisco by which time I had met and become friends with some amazing and brilliant Texans. (Well, I don't know about "brilliant" because that's sort of self-aggrandizing. Let's just say a lot of them were a lot smarter than I am.) By the time we returned to the Bay Area, I could see the sophisticated prejudices my friends had against computers and suthreners.

We have also been fortunate to only afford a house in a relatively unknown neighborhood in Oakland -- thoroughly integrated -- about 50% black, 25-30% white and the rest "Other." Because this gets to the crux of it ... many people, regardless of locale or station, are what they used to call "Intellectually bigoted." These people (most of us) think "Oh those -----" (Fill in the blank of the appropriate otherness.)

But have no problem being friendly, even close with people of that category.

So it comes down to "when you know one of THEM as a person (white, black, hillbilly, metrosexual, gay, lesbian, French, Persian, WASP, Arab, etc) it turns out they're just like real people -- some delightful, most sort of OK, and some annoying nasty and unpleasant people you just want to kick."

What a shock.

A few years ago, I watched an interview on CSPAN with General Wesley Clark, a man who'd been there and done that and actually ended a war he didn't start, explaining why the best possible outcome in Iraq could be a grade of C-minus. The interviewer asked "Not even a C-plus? And General Clark said "C-minus is reaching, meaning if we changed course RIGHT NOW and did everything right we MIGHT get up to C-minus, but it's not likely." And the interviewer asked why. And Clark said something that caused the interviewer's jaw to drop as if someone had just explained Quantum Physics to him -- "Because people are pretty much the same everywhere -- if you bomb their houses and kill their friends and neighbors, they get angry."

To whatever degree, we as a society have devolved to the point where people don't seem to understand that THEY are MORE OR LESS like us and that if anyone is not LIKE us or doesn't AGREE with us, there must be some REASON (they're bigoted, they're too urban, too unsophisticated, too dumb, too smug and acting smart, etc).

It can't just be that their lives and points of view are different from ours. But every bit as valid. Even their prejudices, the ones we see, are just as valid as OUR prejudices (the ones we DON'T see),

It's a two-way street.




Appeasement? You want to see appeasement?

How about Monkey Boy, our drunken sock puppet of a president down on his knees doing a Monica on Kim Jong-il?*

U.S. Gives 500,000 tonnes of food aid to N. Korea

Fri May 16, 2008 9:23pm IST

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States said on Friday it would provide 500,000 metric tonnes in food aid to North Korea in a sign of improving cooperation despite their standoff over Pyongyang's nuclear program.

The aid will start next month and be provided over a 12-month period, the statement from the U.S. Agency for International Development said...

... Washington will supply 400,000 tonnes via the U.N. World Food Program, while U.S. nongovernmental organizations will distribute 100,000 tonnes, the statement said...

... The aid comes as Washington is putting more pressure on North Korea to come up with a declaration of its nuclear activities, part of a broader multilateral deal aimed at getting Pyongyang to abandon all of its nuclear programs in exchange for economic and diplomatic incentives.

A senior U.S. official said the aid was not related in any way to the nuclear issue. U.S. policy is not to use food as a weapon or reward.


No, of course it's not appeasement --- but while they're at it, why not give him the Sudetenland, too?


*I've been corrected in this speculation. I was told by a friend that 43 is probably more proctologically inclined.




This was mentioned and linked to on one of my regular favorites --
the always interesting Reign of Error --

Things Younger Than John McCain

Food (Chocolate chip cookies? Yikes!)
States of the Union
Inventions (Shopping carts)

& a lot more.


Bill O'Reilly's Insane Historical Rant -- Dance Mix Version

How could anyone improve on the original?

Here's how someone did.

Passed along courtesy of Pat Phalen,
who seems to find, quite often, some of the mostest bestest stuff.



Oh what a f***king tower of consideration is that sock puppet in the White House.

He's Sooo considerate of the troops.

Check it out:

In an interview with Politico magazine and Yahoo News, Bush also said he gave up golf in 2003 out of respect for U.S. soldiers killed in the war, which has now lasted more than five years.

"I didn't want some mom whose son may have recently died to see the commander in chief playing golf," he said. "I feel I owe it to the families to be in solidarity as best as I can with them. And I think playing golf during a war just sends the wrong signal."

But of course dancing around like a drunken frat boy, trying to do a time-step while waiting for his tame war hero Johnny McCain* to show up, or holding hands with musicians, and sliding in like a deranged pixie to whack on the drum that has been accompanying his dance -- that sends the right signal to "some mom whose son may have recently died."

*Enough with the war hero crap -- it was 40+ years ago and it was hanging in after he got caught by the other side. F. Scott Fitzgerald said it (and so did General S.L.A.Marshall and others):

"Show me a hero and I'll write you a tragedy."



Also via Boing Boing

3-Year-Old Has Never Fallen Asleep

A 3-year-old Florida boy with a rare condition has not slept in three years.

Rhett has never taken a nap or gone to sleep at night, forcing his parents to keep watch day and night."(My husband) has the day shift and I kind of have the afternoon shift," mother Shannon Lamb said. "We share the night shift because no one can sleep in the house when he is up anyway."Lamb said she is working extra to pay for Rhett's large medical bills. She also said her husband, David, has given up his job to care for their child."I would give anything for Rhett to be this normal little boy who plays and has a good time," Lamb said. "If it takes going to every single solitary doctor, I will do it."According to the May Clinic, chiari malformation is a rare abnormality where brain tissue protrudes in the spinal canal.Part of the skull is abnormally small and puts pressure on the brain.Rhett checked into a hospital for an experimental surgery Thursday.


Famous quote from Samuel Butler, a witty fellow*

"Life is one long process of getting tired"

but this kid is way ahead of the game.

*"A hen is only an egg's way of making another egg."

"They say the test of literary power is whether a man can write an inscription. I say, 'Can he name a kitten?' "

"When you have told anyone you have left him a legacy, the only decent thing to do is die at once."

The seven deadly sins: Want of money, bad health, bad temper, chastity, family ties, knowing that you know things, and believing in the Christian religion."

He had a lot to say.


Refacing Government Tender

Green Lantern Lincoln

wow, i'm surprised how much everyone likes this. it's just something i've been toying around with every now and then, it all started when i would draw glasses or beards on money with the counterfeit pen on the registers at work and just grew in to a hobby. also, keep in mind that a lot of these were taken with camera phones or in low lighting moments before i had to spend them (i'm a poor college student, of course i spent them, i can't afford to keep a collection of twenties somewhere). the quality is getting better, but be lenient. thanks! and tell your friends!

items are from between 08 Sep 2007 & 31 Mar 2008.


There are a total of 60 here

Check them out

They're all quite nifty and besides, this is 60 counts of violating a federal law against defacing money (making money worth nada through war and mismanagement doesn't count)

Give it some appreciation before he's busted and the blogsite shut down.


Ahhh, Texas -- I miss the barbecue and ... uh ... I miss the barbecue

From Boing Boing

Teens desecrate grave to make pot pipe from skull

By David Pescovitz

These gents from Houston are charged with abuse of a corpse after they confessed to digging up a grave to make a pot pipe from the skull. Kevin Wade Jones, 17, was being questioned about a vehicle burglary when he confessed to desecrating the grave a month earlier. Apparently, he and Matthew Richard Gonzales, both 17, and another juvenile dug up the skeleton of an 11-year-old boy who died almost a century ago. I'd love to hear the conversation that led to such a brilliant idea. From the Houston Chronicle:  Photos 2008 05 08 11189310 311XinlinegalleryJones claimed he and his friends used shovels to dig up the body and removed the corpse's head with a garden tool, (Houston police officer Jim) Adkins said. Jones also revealed he and the other two boys took the severed head to the juvenile's home, where they used the skull as a "bong" to smoke marijuana, the officer said.

So, uhh, smoke 'em if you got 'em. I mean that 11-year old kid wasn't USING it, was he?


Clarification on the comments made second post down

When I quoted Charles Olson as saying that mythology drives society and history and defined mythology as "that which is said about that which is said," I mean us .. not over-the-hill talking heads like Pat Buchanan and Carl Bernstein, not the Pentagon sock puppets, but us.

In other words, whatever it is or isn't that Carl Bernstein said, mythology also applies to what WE say about what HE said.

To use a less highly charged example, Richard Nixon, up against it for the Watergate Break-in and investigation, came out and said "I am not a crook." Whatever the paid mouths of television had to say about that (and many of them were saying it was such a shame he had to actually DENY such a thing because blah-blah...) what the people saying was a succinct "Sure you are."

And that's the one that counted.




F * * * the prez campaign -- here's something REALLY important ... The words to the Looney Tunes theme song

It has a name: The Merry-Go-Round Broke Down -- and was written in 1937 by Cliff Friend and Dave Franklin.

The original version contained a verse that led up to the main part of the song, a young man talking about his date with a girl, how they went to an amusement park and "sparked" while riding the carousel:

The merry-go-round broke down
As we went 'round and 'round
Each time 'twould miss
We'd steal a kiss
While the merry-go-round went oom-pah-pah, oom-pah-pah...

The instrumental version of the song became the signature opening and closing credits theme for the Looney Tunes series, always ending with Porky Pig stuttering "Th-th-that's all, folks!"

Different lyrics were in an early cartoon called Daffy Duck and Egghead, that debuted on January 1, 1938. In a show-stopping piece not really connected to the rest of the cartoon's plotline, and with Daffy drawn in a slightly different way than in the rest of the cartoon, Daffy Duck (Mel Blanc) sings this song to the audience while jumping around in his usual way:

My name is Daffy Duck
I worked on a merry-go-round
The job was swell
I did quite well
Till the merry-go-round broke down (Woo-hoo! Woo-hoo! ...)

The guy that worked with me
Was a horse with a lavender eye
Around in whirls we'd wink at girls
Till the merry go round broke down

Up and down
And round it we sped
That dizzy pace
Soon went to my head
Now you know why I'm dizzy
And do the things I do
I am a screw and you'd be too
If the merry go round broke down
If the merry go round broo-o-o-oke down

There were different lyrics (still sung by Mr. Duck) in the animated short Boobs in the Woods.

Oh people call me Daffy
They think that I am goony
Just because I’m happy is
no sign I’m looney tooney

Oh when they say I’m nutsy
It sure gives me a pain
Please pass the ketchup
I think it’s going to rain

Oh you can’t bounce a meatball
Though try with all your might
Turn on the radio I want to fly a kite
Good evening friends

The song showed up more recently several times in Who Framed Roger Rabbit

  • The first time was with Roger Rabbit (Charles Fleischer) who sang it while dancing on top of a bar, scattering shot-glasses and utensils everywhere:

I love to raise some Cain
Believe me it's no strain
It feels so great
To smash a plate
And look, there is no pain... no pain... no pain... [record needle is stuck]

  • Next, it was recited (not sung) by the film's other main character, Eddie Valiant (Bob Hoskins), accompanied by a carousel that is playing the song, in the climactic sequence of the film. Valiant is trying to distract the villains from harming Roger Rabbit and Jessica Rabbit (Kathleen Turner):

This singin' ain't my line
It's tough to make a rhyme
If I get stuck...
I'm out of luck...
(Jessica) "I'm running out of time!"

  • The last time is in an instrumental over the film's final credits, as Porky (Mel Blanc) repeats his classic:"T-t-t-that's All, Folks!" and then disappears in a cloud of pixie dust from Tinkerbell's magic wand.



I am NOT chastising Senator Clinton for her race remarks -- I am trying to point out what happens to them when they're out here

So ok, most people know she was comparing her voter appeal to that of Senator Obama, talking about her broader base (and the jokes about how baby got back are already going around)

She started by referring to an analysis done by the Associated Press (perhaps as if it wasn't SHE who was saying it but the A.P.)

The analysis, she said, showed that "Senator Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me," she went on to say: "There's a pattern emerging here."

She may have meant only to show that her demographic base was different from and larger than his, but old images of axe handles being handed out and Bull Connors' dogs rose up from the sludge of the South remembered.

"...working, hard-working Americans, white Americans"

The late poet Charles Olson observed that history turns on mythology -- his particular definition of that as going to the root words meaning "that which is said ABOUT that which is said."

And what is being said about what she said?

That she was talking about REAL Americans, Americans with jobs, HARD-WORKING Americans, white Americans... (to which the mind immediately adds: not shiftless lazy non-white Americans)

Makes one thing if Stepin Fetchit were still alive, he'd be featured as the Willie Horton of Senator Clinton's Southern Strategy.

And then adding: "whites ... who had not completed college were supporting me."

Could she POSSIBLY mean "I've got the redneck dummies in my corner?"

Of course not -- SHE doesn't mean that but the wheels turn on what people SAY about what she SAID. And damn if it's not hard to think that and not easy to find another meaning.

One of the endless political speculators in this endless campaign said "In politics, saying what you believe is considered a major gaff."

Or in the worlds of the reprehensible John Wilmot, 2d Earl of Rochester:

"Any man who calls things by their rightful name will surely be hanged.

That goes for women, too.



Guess which minister is, as the Irish saying goes, "crazy as a shithouse rat?" (Hint -- it's a white guy.")

Hagee: Public schools give abortions

In a sermon given at his San Antonio, Texas Cornerstone megachurch that was telecast and available in up to ninety million homes worldwide, controversial pastor John Hagee, who has endorsed the presidential bid of Arizona Republican Senator John McCain, Jr., claimed that American public schools provide abortion services. Hagee stated, "Your daughter can get an abortion in public school without telling you but she can't get an aspirin without your approval."

The pastor also claimed that public school teachers can force their students to study a "precursor to witchcraft" and suggests that America has invited "satan" and demonic spirits into its public school systems by failing to display the Ten Commandments on classroom walls. Presidential hopeful John McCain, Jr. has said he is "glad to have" Hagee's support and "admires" the leadership of the Texas pastor -- who has declared God has cursed and doomed America.


Regarding that last line, that "God has cursed and doomed America," if psychotic idiots like Rev Hagee are allowed to run around loose and spew his sewer of vicious insanity into millions of homes, well, maybe we are doomed.


Hagee was INVITED into the McCain campaign (no doubt to kiss up to those 90 million viewers,
just as a smiling sociopathic scumbag shouting out obscenities while hiding behind a bible (I'm referring to Rev Billy Graham) was invited into the White House over and over again by one presidentafter another. (Hey -- I'm born of a Jewish mother, i.e., Jewish, so The Rev Graham take his virulent anti-semitic ravings and shove them up his ass along with the Devil's dick, which is supposed to be happening in that Hell he so often created for his listeners.

Let me make it clear -- I know and have known Christians who are actually CHRISTIAN, in the sense of adhering to and trying to emulate Jesus -- but they don't include those I've mentioned above as well as that sneaky and snide venom insinuatiing wormtongue, Pat Robertson; Weepy Jim Bakker, the Tiny Tears doll of ministry along with his pathetic wife, Tammy Faye; the Toxic Pillsbury Give-me-some=dough boy, the late Jerry Falwell (that name always made me think it was a description of Lucifer tumbling from Heaven to Hell -- "Wow, didn't he fall well? At least he went out with syle.") and all the rest, such as the Reverend Billy Jim Hargis who was putting his Johnson into the kids in the church, goys and girls both -- such as the sodomizing of a teenage boy in a men's room, an act that came to light back in 1976, and all the rest.

These are people who -- if there really is a Heaven and a Hell*, as they claim, will, when they see their lives with a final eye, be VERY VERY surprised to find out which one they actually represented with their fear-mongering.


They make the Rev Jeremiah Wright seem rather small-time tame and restrained when he jumps up and down and does things like damn America for slavery or assert that the presence of America businesses in Saudi Arabia and other Middle East countries were factors in the mass murder of September 11, 2001. Not defending him, just finding his weirdness and hallucinations a lot more amusing than those sprayed into our society by those white guys I mentioned.

And Rev Hagee may be trying for the title of "Most Insane Minister of the 21st Century."


*But I think the observation someone made that "Hell is strictly for believers" might have it right.



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