Saturday, September 19, 2009

Friday, September 18, 2009

Headin' out...

This may be a first for the Brain - me an' Fixer both on a cruise at the same time, him on Queen Mary 2 and me cruisin' south on I-5. Me 'n Mrs. G are heading out to the Central Coast to visit family and friends for a few days.

I'll probably post a little from mini-HAL, so please stop by. I'll be back at this pop stand on Tuesday.

See yas.

Sotomayor Issues Challenge to a Century of Corporate Law


n her maiden Supreme Court appearance last week, Justice Sonia Sotomayor made a provocative comment that probed the foundations of corporate law.

During arguments in a campaign-finance case, the court's majority conservatives seemed persuaded that corporations have broad First Amendment rights and that recent precedents upholding limits on corporate political spending should be overruled.

But Justice Sotomayor suggested the majority might have it all wrong -- and that instead the court should reconsider the 19th century rulings that first afforded corporations the same rights flesh-and-blood people have.

Judges "created corporations as persons, gave birth to corporations as persons," she said. "There could be an argument made that that was the court's error to start with...[imbuing] a creature of state law with human characteristics."

"Progressives who think that corporations already have an unduly large influence on policy in the United States have to feel reassured that this was one of [her] first questions," said Douglas Kendall, president of the liberal Constitutional Accountability Center.

Good for her. Yes, it's just one comment, but it shows common sense in the face of a long-ago right wing decision that corporations should be protected from the law and a more recent one that money equals speech. Maybe la Boricua is gonna turn out OK after all, not that her position on this is likely to prevail.

Here's Gordon's Law: If I can't grab it by the stackin' swivel, it ain't got the same rights I do.

Please read the rest of the article to see how, when, and why that ridiculous decision came about. I'll bet you can guess, though.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Dick gets stabbed in the back

Sorry, didn't mean to get yer hopes up...


Former Vice President Dick Cheney was undergoing surgery on Thursday to treat an often-debilitating back condition caused by pressure on the nerves in the lower spine, his office said.

Lumbar spinal stenosis is caused by compression of nerves in the lower back, most often producing pain or numbness, tingling and weakness in the legs and buttocks.

Thanks, Reuters, for the visual of his byew-tocks tingling. Bleach break...

If I gave a shit about Cheney's pain, which I don't, let him suffer, I'd love to do a little 'street surgery' on him.

I'd operate on his back by going in through the front with a shit-eatin' grin and a KA-BAR. Maybe do a little work on his prostate and also clear the anal blockage (his head) that gave him his bad attitude.

Eastern Europe Missile Shield Scrapped

AFP via Raw Story

The United States has pulled back from a plan to build a missile defense system in central Europe that had enraged Russia, after downgrading the threat of a missile attack from Iran, officials said Thursday.

Czech Prime Minister Jan Fischer said he was told in a late-night call from US President Barack Obama that the shield would not go into place in the Czech Republic and that Poland had been given a similar message.

The Czech Republic and Poland are unhappy about this because they're still scared shitless of Russia, probably for good reason. I don't think they were ever worried about an attack from Iran, which was Bush's excuse for calling for putting missiles so close to Russia.

The fucking missiles didn't work anyway, and this will ease tensions with Russia, so good for Obama.


The best indicator that this is a good idea is that the neocons are panicked over it.

The right-wing regimes of the "new Europe" -- that is, the post-Soviet governments in eastern Europe that emerged, during the Bush administration, as the staunchest backers of American empire -- are yelping over the decision by the Obama administration to cancel Bush-era plans to build a missile defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic.

Predictably, the neoconservative Weekly Standard is outraged*, calling it a "complete capitulation to Russia's Vladimir Putin," and adding:

"The consequences of this action in Eastern Europe, especially in Ukraine and in other countries that feel vulnerable to Russian power, will be disastrous. It is a major American retreat in the face of Russian bullying. And we will get absolutely nothing for it."

What reality-based folks call 'diplomacy' and 'common sense', the neoimperialists call 'capitulation'.

Note to the neocons: You lose, fuckers. Go away.

*Normally I wouldn't link to that neobirdcageliner, but it's just too much fun not to go see them get all apoplectic and blow their safeties. Heh.

The truth is that the decision to put a missile defense system was both stupid and needlessly provocative. Stupid, because the system doesn't work and because the threat from Iran is nonexistent. And provocative, because it was part of the Bush administration's neo-Cold War effort to bolster and expand NATO, pressure Russia militarily in south and central Asia, back adventurist states such as Georgia, and otherwise poke the Russian bear with sharp sticks. Obama wants cooperation with Russia -- on energy policy, on Iran, on terrorism, and above all on disarmament and de-nuclearization -- and he's willing to put his money where his mouth is.

President Obama deserves high praise for this action.

Repuglican Gomorrah

My subtitle: Fuck me good, Jesus. Nobody else does.

Article in Harper's that promises hope and salvation. For US! Praise the Lord! A good read.

Republican Gomorrah – Six Questions for Max Blumenthal

3. You record repeatedly how religious right figures embrace conservative sexual mores, and how an amazing number of them break these taboos, become enmeshed in scandal—only to ask forgiveness and announce their adherence to the same taboos. [...]

Followers of the Christian right openly admit that they have no capacity to restrain themselves from total depravity without constant, stern commandments from an angry God.

These figures believe if they don’t do what God supposedly wants them to do they will descend immediately and inevitably into sin and perversion – because that’s what they want to do.

What a fucking cop-out! Plain old hypocrisy. So what else is new about phony christians?

If Fromm were alive, he would point to Dobson as the modern realization of the “magic helper” who “promises excitement and offers a political structure and symbols which allegedly give meaning and order to an individual’s life.” Fromm would also recognize in Dobson the sadomasochistic tendencies that he says are essential to the authoritarian character–the simultaneous drive to hurt the weak and worship the strong.

Indeed, Dobson’s bestselling childrearing handbook, Dare To Discipline, is little more than a manual for creating sadomasochists. [...]

All good 'christians' too. Yeesh.

Sarah Palin is the archetype of the crisis-wracked right-wing woman. She advertises herself as a feminist to people who oppose women’s liberation and favors abstinence education and “family values” moral crusades while her own family resembles a Jerry Springer episode. This seemingly conflicted dynamic is familiar to women among the Republican grassroots. Thus they relate to her on an intimate, emotional level that transcends issues and even ideology.

They like her because she's as fucked-up as they are. Wonderful.

Finally, after a string of disastrous interviews with the mainstream press, Palin phoned in to Dobson’s radio show for her last major campaign media spot. Without any scrutiny from the secular media, Palin declared herself a “hardcore pro-lifer” and urged all the “prayer warriors” to flood the polls for her and McCain. Dobson pleaded aloud, directing his prayers heavenward: “We’re rather boldly asking for a miracle with regard to the election this year.”

Here's the absolute essence of christianity: "Miracles yesterday, miracles tomorrow, sorry, no miracles today." Whew!

The article ends on an up note:

But only a miracle, or a terribly ineffectual Obama administration, can save the Republican Party from the movement that has taken it over and driven it to destruction.

Nobody, but nobody, could be that ineffectual other than Repugs. Thank you, Lord.

Also, here's former(?) right wing christoloony Frank Schaefer giving the lowdown on the other christowhackoffs to Rachel Maddow. Fast forward to about 6:20.

Mary Travers 1936 - 2009


Mary Travers, one-third of the 1960s folk trio Peter, Paul and Mary who helped popularize the work of Bob Dylan and sang hits such as "Puff (The Magic Dragon)," has died, aged 72, after battling leukemia.

The group's version of "Blowin' in the Wind" by a young Bob Dylan helped transform the song into a civil rights anthem and introduced his music to a wider audience.

The group also scored big hits with "If I Had a Hammer" and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?," co-written by folk artist Pete Seeger.

Along with "Puff," the group's other hits were "Lemon Tree," and "Leaving on a Jet Plane."

The trio's members were also noted for their political activism. They performed at the 1963 civil rights March on Washington and at demonstrations protesting the Vietnam War.

Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Travers grew up in the Greenwich Village section of New York City. She was influenced at an early age by Woody Guthrie, the Weavers, Leadbelly and other major folk musicians.

"I was raised on Josh White, the Weavers and Pete Seeger," Travers told The New York Times in 1994. "The music was everywhere. You'd go to a party at somebody's apartment and there would be 50 people there, singing well into the night."

If there's any one reason I'm as slightly Liberal as I am today, it's because of my early (and ongoing) love of folk music. I had all the same artists influence me as Ms. Travers did, PLUS Peter, Paul, and Mary.

I owe ya a big debt of thanks, hon, and I'm not the only one. Godspeed.

Thanks to thatsakeeper, UK.

Rock me ...

I got my post up from Gibraltar today.

Why the Baucus Plan is Dead, Why Co-Ops Won’t Work, and Why You Should Be Happy About It.

As I'm sure we've suspected all along, the 'Baucus plan' turns out to be the dumbest piece of shit ever and a colossal waste of time. Here's the first and last paragraphs from a good post at Please... Cut The Crap!!!:

As anyone could have predicted weeks ago, the "alternative bill" Max Baucus has presented is a complete and utter joke. But don't be mad, progressives. Be happy. Before this piece of crap appeared, there was all sorts of speculation about what an alternative might be. Talk of “co-ops” actually sounded like a feasible idea to a lot of people. Now, however, they can see them and read about them, and now, we can demonstrate that the alternative Blue Dog plan is, well, a dog. If we play this right, we can make a strong reform plan with a robust public option a reality.

That’s why progressives should be glad he presented his plan. Baucus is covering his ass, and the asses of the other Blue Dogs, who are in states with a significant population of right wing cretins. There’s no possible way this plan will go through intact. It's simply not possible, because it makes no sense. If I was able to pick it apart this easily in the first 50 pages, who besides right wing cranks will buy its nonsense?

We just won the war. But keep marching, anyway.

That's pretty optimistic, but I hope he's right.

That was just the first piece I ran across on the backlash against the idiotic 'Insurance Co. Profit Preservation Plan'. It won't be the last.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Finally got pics up from Lisbon. Gibraltar tomorrow.

Toys That Teach

Christmas is coming, and you must know some kids you'd like to give these to and set them on a productive career path. Heh.

Go see the slide show of The 7 Most Inappropriate Products For Children. Don't worry about a 'liquid alert'. Your jaw will drop so far you won't be able to drink.

Stuffed STDs

"My child has herpes!" If that's something you'd like to yell without your child actually being infected with a venereal disease then these plushies are for weirdo.

There's a couple of these that I think are actually kinda cool, but I'm probably not the world's leading role model. Like the 'Toy Tattoo Gun'. The Prison Industry Complex will probably give these out by the thousands...

Toys today seem to be a lot cooler than when I was a kid. I had a toy gas station once, and it led me to a life of being a gas station attendant and later a mechanic. Maybe if I'da had a toy briefcase fulla play money and a toy gay hooker I coulda been a rich Repug politician without ever having to work a day in my life. Who knows where these toys will take today's kids?

In a nutshell...

Click to embiggen

Thanks to YubaNet.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Kathy Griffin & Richard Clarke's Flirtfest

Man, I am so sick of reading about Crazy Becky and his reign over The Land Of The Tiny-Brained that I thought I'd bring ya something kinda sweet and funny.


Move over Levi Johnston, Kathy Griffin is hot for Richard Clarke! The comedienne made a few unsubtle advances at the global terrorism expert on Bill Maher Friday night, begging him to stop eying her rack and trying to start a discussion about his penis. Clarke, who is unmarried, egged her on by suggestively wagging his tongue and licking his teeth and lips at her.

"Are you getting more interested in dating Kathy Griffin?" Maher asked him.

"Oh, I've been interested for a long time!" Clarke responded.

Go watch the video and read the comments. 'Work safe' depending on where you work.

Note to Richard Clarke: Best o' luck, pal. I think hookin' up with her would be a life-changer. Heh.

Here's a rule for survival: Cold steel, hard cash, dry socks, and stay away from red-headed wimmen.

Then again, survival ain't everything...

Headline of the Day

Glenn Beck Proposes Cap on Nation's IQ

Southbound, mama ...

Oy! Left JFK at 2100 Sunday night and didn't have much sleep on the plane during the 6 1/2 hour flight to London and then bureaucratic SNAFUs at Heathrow (plus traffic on the M3 motorway) put us a couple hours behind getting to the ship, docked at Southampton. After getting here, unpacking, saying hello to members of the crew that have become family, it was time for dinner. All we could muster after that was sleep (I don't care what anybody says, the only way to get over jet lag is to sleep your way through it). So, here it is, about 9 am Tuesday morning (we just woke up) after sleeping for 11 hours and I feel so much better.

We're currently heading south (sorta) off the coast of France (We left Southampton about 5 pm last night) and I'll be back later after I get some coffee.

Cross-posted @ Worlds.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Oh, the irony...

Ironic Times

And kick off flu season.

Congress Approval Rating Drops to 2%
Reelection rate remains at 98%.

Obama School Speech Deemed a Success
Millions of children join Communist Party.


Displeasure with (Hatred of) Obama (blacks) is helping conservative lawmakers (racist honkies) gain ground in those states (the former Confederacy) where skepticism about his agenda (fear of communist takeover) has fed doubts (paranoia), leading to calls for restraint (lynch mobs).

Crazy Becky's '9-12' logo based on communist and socialist designs

LATimes, graphics and links. Go see.

For the logo, three raised and clenched red fists are superimposed over the U.S. Capitol. Obviously the bloody fist represents the tea-baggers' themes of unity and resistance.

I don't think he's that deep a thinker. I bet he just sees it as shaking his fist at that uppity administration.

[...] Even in that reduced crowd, however, surely someone recognized how odd the right-wing gathering's left-wing logo was.

Maybe Beck will explain. Sort of.

The wingtard guru and his asshole followers don't give a shit about history and wouldn't know a real commie if one bit 'em on the ass even if they could see around the flapping 'teabags' that are blocking their view. Ignorance is bliss. Yeesh.

I doubt if they'll get the comic irony in their choice of logos either.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

So long boss, knock 'em dead, don'tcha worry 'bout a thing...

As always, the Wes' Coas' faction of the Brain wishes the Fixers a wonderful and safe vacation. We'll be following along at Worlds. I ain't really too worried about 'em. I'm more concerned that they mighta beefed up the security on the liquor cabinet, fridge, credit cards, and the wheels...

And, keeping up with tradition, I'm posting yet another version of this tune. - Fixer

This one's got dancin' girls! I wonder if they got anything planned this week...

Jimmy Buffett playing "Gypsies in the Palace" in Bridgeview, IL at Toyota Park on 8-8-2009.

Thanks to ctpdshafer.

Leaving ...

The car will be here in 12 hours to take us to JFK. In that time, we have to pack (yet to begin) and then head over to Dad-in-law Fixer's to make sure he's all squared away. Thankfully, I dropped Shayna at her vet's yesterday so I don't have a Cattle Dog under foot trying to help. Barring any changes (or wifi on the aircraft), my next post will be from The Golden Lion Pub aboard QM2.

As always, Gord's the man. Don't give him too much shit. And, keeping up with tradition, I'm posting yet another version of this tune.

Peter, Paul, and Mary - Leaving On A Jet Plane