Wednesday, December 31, 2008

And so Bobby Rush is completely irrelevant now....

Its morning again in Illinois and on this particular morning there aren't too many citizens dumber than Roland Burris, but Bobby Rush is surely chief among them.

Lets chew on the irony for a moment before we get to the stupid.........

Rush, former radical Black Panther, apparently sees no contradiction in accepting largesse from a white criminal to advance his "higher principal".  Civil rights used to be about calling the nation to its better moral self.   For Rush though its just about keeping score, by any means necessary I guess even if it means accepting political handouts from The Man.   

Now for the stupid.  Rush bemoans the fact that there are currently no African American Senators.  True enough.   The reason for that however is that the most recent Senator of African descent has just  been overwhelmingly elected President.  Perhaps Rush has heard about this?  Either way it hardly strikes one as a situation that evidences some racial disparity that urgently needs addressing.  Isn't there some scale here?   One President has to be worth at least two Senators, it can't be a zero sum proposition.  Poor job of keeping score Bobby.

But lets just say that Bob has a point.... what if the larger interests of society really are advanced by putting a black man in this Senate seat?   If that's the case its hard to see how putting Burris, of all people, in this seat under these circumstances will advance the cause of the downtrodden.   Burris is likable enough but  he can't get himself elected  dog catcher and even under less bizzaro circumstances there is no evidence that he could hold that Senate seat in an open election.  However, under these bizzaro circumstances its clear to all but two people in Illinois  that Burris will be trounced in the next general election,  possibly  by a Republican who  will most certainly be white as there are no African American Republicans in Illinois since the mother-ship  came to collect Alan Keyes.   

If you're going to play racial identity politics you should at least do it well.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

We should probably sacrifice a virgin

I watch too much Discovery Channel.  We're doomed, doomed I tellz ya.  This could stop anytime now and that' be just fine.

Is the Big Bang teetering?

This certainly raises the eyebrow.   What'll we do with all our Einstein pop culture crap?   Get your Abhay Ashtekar  bumper stickers while you still can

Monday, December 29, 2008

More Annoyance.

Its hard to digest that there are people who would offer this and expect you to consume it but.....

Money quote:
"Forget too that the rockets that have been hitting Israel FOR YEARS (emphasis mine) almost never hurt  anyone or damage anything because they have  tiny warheads and land in empty fields"

So if I shoot at you with  a tiny gun and happen to be a very poor shot you should just tolerate it......okay?

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Why Hamas annoys me no end.....

Im treading into dicey-dicey waters.......

In no way should my annoyance with Hamas/Hezbollah be read as blanket approval of every policy Israel pursues, far from it.   But I continually find myself shaking my head over the fact that the keepers of Palestine continue to both  provoke a stronger opponent and then complain about their response.  One cannot have it both ways.   

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

That's a little too Green pal...

I so badly want this not to be true

How it outta be

With a nod to Gee money

Hitchens goes off on Rick Warren.

As usual  its a little cringe worthy

And as usual I agree with Hitchens, though as usual I wonder if he couldn't make the same point without being such an asshole, but many Warren types have long since perfected the art of being an anus so Im prepared to call it a wash if you are.

For whatever reason the Warren thing doesn't bother me a bit even though I wouldn't have a disagreement of fact with a single dissenter.   What does confuse me though is the sense of betrayal many have over Warren's selection.    If you've paid attention at all this is classic Obama and in that regard Im getting exactly what I voted for, asshole and all.

Monday, December 22, 2008

So Cheney and Wallace had no idea they were doing Frost/Nixon dialogue?

Transcript from the Cheney/Wallace interview on Fox this weekend:

Wallace:  "This is at the core of the controversies that I want to get to you with in a moment.  If the president during war decides to do something to protect the country, is it legal?"

Cheney: "General proposition, I'd say yes"

As if anyone thought Cheney might express even a bit of doubt.....

This has a familiar ring to it that seems unlikely for the participants not to have been aware of , though why I couldn't guess.  Who's zoomin' who?

Check out the trailer from the movie Frost/Nixon.  Its the same exchange except Wallace is a softball tosser and Frost had actual balls.  At about the 2 minute 20 second mark......

Sunday, December 21, 2008

In about an hour you'll understand how screwed we are.

Krugman in another excellent speech.  This time at the National Press Club.  Invest some time but it'll be well worth it.   You wont sleep well for a month.

Im totally in a fight with this old woman....

She lives on my street.  She's about 76 years old, suffers from Macular Degeneration, and is kicking my monkey ass.

How could this happen?

Well this person, lets call her Old Woman, is the kind of old person whose only remaining purpose is to let you know how wrong everything you do is.  The way you raise your kids, mow your lawn, paint your garage....all of it.  Wrong.  And not just mistaken or ill considered, but a moral fucking outrage.  Wrong wrong wrong.....

She compliments this charming personality trait with some real hard-as-nails old school racism.

Yeah..... wetbacks, spicks, niggers, chinks, jews..... all of it.  Lovely.  In Old Woman's world they're all either trying to buy a house  on this street or marry a white woman. And if you don't see it that way well that's just because you're soft and spoiled not having come up the hard way like Old Woman did.  

Mostly the neighbors just regard her the way you would your retarded cousin and nod and smile and maybe find a reason to go inside if you see her coming your way.  But finally this fall I couldn't nod and smile anymore and I just threw down on her.   "Old woman", I said, "I can't believe the hateful things that come out of your mouth".  It went downhill from there.

Well she went home.  She went home, cried, and proceeded to tell everyone on the street that I'd made her cry by being meaner to her than anyone has ever been.   She's probably right, but sometimes you just gotta stand up to these old people.   The upshot is that now all my neighbors either think Im an idiot or an asshole. 

Well played Old Woman......well played.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Jesus and Buddha walk into a bar...

When did this stop happenning, and why?

Its Side Show Bob people........

Gladwell has been peddling intellectual Twinkies and Ding Dongs for quite awhile.  I've been patiently waiting for the backlash

Friday, December 19, 2008

Is everyone who opposes gay marriage a hateful bigot?

No.  But make no mistake, we're talking about a bigoted point of view.

I'll challenge you to do this:  Re-read all the anti gay marriage screeds. Allllllllllll of them.  Then find me the one that actually articulates any specific, real, actual, tangible, measurable, quantitative, definite damage it would do to society that would justify governmental proscription.  I'll wait..........

Here's the problem with the conservative's argument.  If you believe that rights  are natural, and you know who you are, then you have to explain why ANY  minority must wait upon the largesse of the majority to exercise those rights.  I'll wait on that one too......

So while Huckabee et al try to argue that marriage has always been defined like it is now the point they're afraid to make is that they don't believe that gays deserve to be treated like everyone else because that might unzip the very fabric of society even though they can't begin to explain how that would work.

Bigots define people by what they are, not how they act.   There's no other way around it.

Cautious like how?

Every "snow event" in Chicago brings out these signs downtown.   They're in front of virtually every building dutifully making you aware of the great danger you are in.  And truth be told vast sheets of polar ice caps do coming skating down to the sidewalk and every now  and then one of these ice shelves will diminish our numbers.

From a litigious  point of view I can understand why an insurance company holding a policy on one of these Loop office buildings would want to be able to tell a grieving family "please accept our deepest sympathy but we warned the guy"

But from my point of view, the potential aggrieved party, Im not sure what course of action these signs are trying to lead me to.  What the hell should I do to extend my lifespan here?  

I've come to this zen.  If you get brained by big hunk of ice while you're walking down the street minding your own business then its pretty clear that you're meant to be dead now.  Breath into it.

When conservatives talk about trickle down tax cuts....

They never want to talk about paying the piper, like this guy

Money quote:  "Think about the way  we've been living the past 30 years.  Thirty years ago the leverage of the investment banks was like 4-1, 5-1. Today its 30-1. That's not just a change of numbers. This is a change of fundamental thinking."

This  is why we should all be scared to death.   That 30-1 system has collapsed and there wont be a silver bullet solution.   Plant a garden.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Hey baby... put on that cow costume....

This happened

The Finest Photograph Ever Taken

Dad wasn't supposed to live this long.   For 42 years we'd been together at Christmas.   This would be the last one.

This is The Finest Photograph Ever Taken because it captures more than the moment it was snapped.    The bond that can only be forged in the passage of more than 4 decades of marriage is right there.   But even more than that this picture tells the future.   Dad accepted that he was dying and you can see his peace.   If you look closely though you can just see the tears welling in Mom's eyes.  She knew the loss that was coming.   We all did.

How many pictures do we have taken of us over the years?  Probably thousands.  How many of them capture our entire lives in a single moment?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Fed Rate and Silly Negroes

You remember that Eddie Murphy White Man sketch on SNL??  Yeah you do.   Among other things he goes to a bank and discovers that white men can borrow money  for free and he and a white bank exec have a laugh at the expense of an African American loan officer.   Well, evidently we're all white men as of today..... Japanese too..... and I don't notice many people laughing.

Free money is the last bullet the Fed has to fire and it's not at all clear that it'll work.  Cheap money was the gas on the fire that became the great sub prime conflagration and typically firefighters don't throw more fuel on a fire.  When you start asking "what'll we do next?" you  get a lot of humming and pulling at the collar.   Its scary to think about how bad this could get and unnerving to observe how few folks see it coming.

Monday, December 15, 2008

A long time coming

And so it begins...

A collection of the very worst holiday songs of all time. Don't let your head hit the pillow tonight without sampling "Mommy and Daddy Please Don't Steal For Me This Christmas". A trailer park classic