Saturday, July 17, 2010

Hot Rod Boogie

This one's for Fixer. Heh.

Thanks to waneonnol.

California Dreamin'

Some dumbass pol suggested folks go to Nebraska for the wonderful minimum wage jobs. Screw that - we got 'em right here! Do this for half a day and you'll understand why the Meskins are here. It will come to you in a flash of heat stroke while they're haulin' yer lazy Anglo ass off on a stretcher.

Yes, I know pickin' cotton is pretty much all done with machines these days. It's an allegory and it's Saturday. Button it.

Thanks to waneonnol. He's my age and has lots of stuff like this. Old guys rule!

Vote now, pay later

Raw Story, links and video:

Rep. Peter King (R-NY) told a radio show Thursday that the GOP should focus on its strategy of being against President Barack Obama's policies, but shouldn't give too many specifics on its own policies -- or those policies could be used against them.

For once, he's absolutely right. Heh.

"Deliberately hiding one's ideas for fear of examination is not only cowardice, it's indicative of a party that suspects its own beliefs would be rejected by the public," writes Steve Benen at the Washington Monthly.


Of course, this isn't just about King. Note that would-be Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) sat down with the Washington Post recently, and refused to give any details about how Republicans would govern.

It's not a mystery why -- GOP proposals would likely cost the party dearly if the public got a chance to consider them -- but that's hardly a good excuse.

The Repugs spend all their time pandering to the Dead End Quarter with platitudes and bullshit. Those morons eat it up, but there aren't enough of them to elect anybody. It's the next 26% they gotta convince and some of those people actually think before they vote. Best hope they don't actually hear that they're being asked to vote against themselves.

Hey, voters, vote for us because we're the loudest and we're not them. Just put us in power because God says we belong there and we'll spring the rest of it on ya after it's too late.

Fool me once...

Hey, Big Spender ...

You know, the Republicans never speak of anything in the long-term; never worry about what happens 5, 10, 25, or 50 years down the line as a result of their 'policy' initiatives. Except when it comes to furthering their own interests. Seems when they're in power, deficits don't matter but when they're out, you'd think it's the most critical issue facing the country.

Pic stolen from scarce. Click to embiggen.

We can bankrupt the nation on useless, criminal wars and give tax cuts to the rich, but if we have to help folks who are in a bad way, it'll ruin the nation.

Saturday Emmylou Blogging

Thanks to JasonKT.

Friday, July 16, 2010

A Belated Birthday Wish

Following up on yesterday's post about Steinbeck, Woody Guthrie, et al, a tip o' the Brain to reader Batocchio who sent us this. Go see, and Happy Birthday, Woody.

Shoot BP: The Amazon to Arctic Investigation

Greg Palast starts a piece with a "Quote of the Day":

At Tatitlek Village, Alaska Native Henry Makarka told me, "If I had a machine gun I'd shoot every one of them white sons of bitches."

Makarka was talking about the executives who came to him and his tribe 40 years ago to purchase their land at Valdez. They were from the companies now known as Exxon and BP.

The Tatitlek were paid the handsome price of $1 for Valdez, which the companies knew was worth billions.

We have launched the multi-national Amazon to Arctic investigation of BP and its oily sisters.

The rest of his piece is a plea for funds to continue his investigation. Please go read and donate if you're interested.

Headline of the Day

E-mail from Gulf Coast hiring agency: “BP is evil.”


Headline of the Day & a Poem

Sen. Vitter Denies He’s A Birther, Blames Rumor On “Liberal Thought Police”

Tony Peyser

I’m not a member of the “Liberal Thought Police.”

I do want to make that clear.

(However, I am in one of their training programs &

Am currently a volunteer.)

Heh. "Thought police" of any stripe are bad of course, and the Repugs totally outshine everybody else in that effort, but it sure would be a lot quieter around here if we had a Librul one.

Dems: Not Dead Yet

It has come to my attention that there are those among you who could use a modicum of cheering up. I hope this helps.

On The Hill

Democrats worried they face certain wipeout in the November elections take heart: campaign donations keep pouring in. In fact, Democrats have seen the percentage of overall contributions coming through online increase by 62 percent, comparing the second quarter of 2008 with the second quarter of 2010, according to a company that provides fundraising and compliance software for Democratic campaigns.

Internet-based political giving continues to democratize political engagement, giving greater voice to a larger number of small-dollar contributors, NGP says in a statement. While overall online contributions soared, the average online contribution amount decreased from $258.72 in the second quarter of 2008, to $211.34 in the second quarter this year. The online channel also continues to drive down the average donation across both online/offline, which fell from $471.92 in the second quarter of 2008, to $357.81 in the same period this year, the company added.

I get to see 'our' online donations once a month when I see the credit card statement. Not very big, but fairly steady.

The thing that drives down hopes that Repugs will not get back in power despite their lockstep dick-steppin' is the nagging little voice in our heads that knows beyond all doubt there is one thing the Dems excel at above all others: snatchung defeat from the jaws of victory.


Could the "Lockstep Dickstep" be the new Repug dance craze? Do Repugs dance?


Marc Perkel

People are talking about how the Republicans might do in the elections this November. I say they can't win because the Republican party no longer exists. Those who claim to be the Republicans aren't. The party is dead. Only the name survives.

This is not the party of Abraham Lincoln. Ronald Reagan was far to liberal for today's Republicans. What is left of what the Republicans is the Ku Klux Klan wing, neocons like Dick Cheney, and those who are against the kind of people who think. The party is owned by corporate puppets that apologize to British petroleum. The party is led by Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin. Republicans are only concerned about the deficit when they are out of power and spend like mad when they are in power.

Republicans need to take responsibility. They need to stand for something more than empty slogans. There are no ideas there anymore. It's all about their own self interest. So Republicans cannot possibly win because Republicans no longer exist.

Will someone please tell all the morons who will vote for these dead men? Hmmmm. Dead Repugs could probably govern better than live ones, but let's not take the chance.

The great Dick Cheney empathy test

Friday Morford on the start of Dick Cheney's final slide to hell. A 'must read'.

So it begins.

The first knee-jerk response to the Great Dick Cheney Empathy Test (GDCET) is, of course, the easiest, and the most obvious, the most available to your giddy puppydog consciousness, and my guess is it shot through you like a fast and wonderful lightning bolt of OH MY SWEET JESUS YES the instant you read the story above.

That response was, shall we say, not very subtle. It was, I'm guessing, a not-so-secret howl to the universe that the sooner Dick exits this earthly plane, the healthier, lighter and happier we will all be, planetwide. Dark shadows will lift, flowers will bloom more brightly, 10 million female uteri can finally unclench, and so on.

This one is so good I put it in toto Below The Fold.

I must not be a very good Liberal or Christian. I wish for Cheney to die a slow lingering wasting death in pain and suffering. I want him to see the light in his final moment and realize how badly he fucked up. I want him to burn (in oil, heh) for eternity amidst the never-ending screams of the innocents he murdered.

We have no chance of him answering for his crimes on this earth. Any vengeance, payback, karma, justice will have to come in the hereafter, so for Cheney's sake, I hope there is one.

He's dying and there's no hurry. I have no empathy for Cheney whatsoever. I save my empathy for human beings.

His 'final slide to hell'? I hope it's covered in ground glass and rusty nails and he arrives at his reward in shreds.

Oh, and I hope he lives until at least one minute after midnight next January 1st so his family will have to pay inheritance tax on his ill-gotten millions. It's all we're going to get out of him. I'm sure his 'family', good Repugs all, hope he does the right thing and croaks sooner than that.

I think I failed Morford's test. How'd you do?

You wanna win?

I don't give the Dems much of a chance in the midterms this November and I haven't heard about anything they can do to change that. They talk about messaging and all the propaganda bullshit when an old adage still rings true; "actions speak louder than words". If you have to take the time to explain nuance to people, you've already lost.


"How do you make rank and file Dems care about the midterms? It's unclear that yelling about how mean and nasty Republicans are is going to cut it."

No, it's not unclear. Fear of the Republicans just won't cut it, because the Democrats have been doing the very same things the Republicans used to do, or close enough that what they're doing will make little difference in improving lives any time soon. Yes, the only way the Democrats in Government can get the Democrats out of Government fired up is for the Democrats in Government to do some important things for their base that it recognizes is for them. Some things whose value is obvious, and doesn't need to be explained to them. Some things that would make the base care before the election whether or not the Democrats lost, and very, very sorry after it if they did. Some things that would make the base proud to be Democrats again. Some things that would make the base not wish that enough Democrats lost in the 2010 election that the whole Party ceased to exist, and opened up the way for a new party that would really represent working people again for the first time since the 1970s. What could those things be? Well, here are four things that could be done. But the last three things can't be done unless the very first thing is done, because there just isn't enough "Congress time" in an election year to do them the normal way. [my em]


Americans, as a whole, are too ignorant to appreciate nuance and the Dems, as a whole, are too ignorant, willfully or not, of what the base really wants. Here's a hint: It ain't Republican-lite.

Hopefully I'm wrong ...

But I'm willing to bet that if they prove this "cap" holds on the Deepwater Horizon well, they're gonna suggest that they not permanently seal it because they would want to reopen it "when the technology improves". It's all about the Benjamins.

Thank god it's Friday. The Mrs. will be home tomorrow from her twice-yearly business trip to schmooze their clients on the West Coast. Yay!

One day ...

Maybe a few centuries from now, archaeologists from another world will stumble across a planet, 3rd out from its sun, that is nothing more than a charred, lifeless piece of rock and wonder how such an advanced society could manage to incinerate itself so easily.


The combined global land and ocean surface temperature data also found the January-June and April-June periods were the warmest on record, according to NOAA's National Climatic Data Center, which based its findings on measurements that go back as far as 1880.

In June, the combined average for global land and ocean temperatures was 61.1 degrees Fahrenheit
(16.2 Celsius) -- 1.22 degrees Fahrenheit (0.68 Celsius) more than the 20th century average of 59.9 degrees Fahrenheit (15.5 Celsius).

Temperatures warmer than average spread throughout the globe in recent months, most prominently in Peru, in the central and eastern United States and in eastern and western Asia, according to NOAA.


We have to stop burning shit to produce energy, soon.

Great thanks to Ol' Fez for the link.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

So ...

I'm creeping up on 50 and I'm getting a lot of reminders (mostly the Mrs. and AARP nagging at me) that I gotta go get a colonoscopy. My question is, is there any way I can request an openly gay man do do the procedure? I mean, they're the folks who know what they're doing back there, right? The Mrs. says I'm crazy* and they'll probably throw me out of the clinic, but I'm serious.

That said:

The Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved the first treatment that uses a so-called cancer vaccine, a drug that trains the body’s own immune system to fight the disease.

The drug, Provenge, developed by the Dendreon Corporation, was approved to treat advanced prostate cancer. In clinical trials it extended the lives of patients about four months compared with a placebo.


There's something. You know the Mrs. will nag me to death until I get checked; this might get me a reprieve from being reamed .060 over, even with a gay man at the controls.

*She says that a lot.

NE - A Paradise To Live In Or See

[A big welcome to Crooks and Liars readers! Thanks, Mike! - F]

Fixer and Digby done set my ass off (I've got buttons. Push 'em. Stand back. Giggle.). Heh. Even though Californian (Yay!) John Steinbeck is one of my favorite authors (and a Chevy man. Yay!) I've never read the novel, but Grapes Of Wrath may be my favorite ever movie. Yes, I know the endings are different, but we could use a Hollywood ending right about now. One that doesn't include the words "post-apocalyptic". Once the Great Diaspora to Nebraska for minimum wage jobs begins, Nebraskans might not see it that way. More like locusts. Trust me, us Californians know about this shit.

Heres a virtual movie of the novelist John Steinbeck (1902 - 1968) discussing his reasons for writing his great novelThe Grapes of Wrath in a sound interview recorded in 1952. To my knowledge their is no surviving film recording of John Steinbeck discussing his work......

Thanks to poetryanimations, UK

Here's a Hollywood hype video of Steinbeck's novel being made into film and a description:

The Grapes of Wrath (1940) is an American drama film directed by Academy Award Winner Best Director, John Ford. It was based on the Pulitzer Prize winning The Grapes of Wrath (1939), written by John Steinbeck. The screenplay was written by Nunnally Johnson and the executive producer was Darryl F. Zanuck.[1]

The film tells the story of the Joads, an Oklahoma family, who, after losing their farm during the Great Depression in the 1930s, become migrant workers and end up in California. The motion picture details their arduous journey across the United States as they travel to California in search for work and opportunities for the family members.

In 1989, this film was one of the first 25 films to be selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

And a timely fairly recent New York Times review that puts Grapes Of Wrath in a modern perspective:

A. O. Scott reviews John Ford's 1940 film based on John Steinbeck's novel about the Great Depression.

To all you folks heading for Nebraska, just substitute 'Nebraska' for 'California' in the following tune by another champion of the common man. That oughta work. Heh. Note: Arlo's version is 'embedding disabled', but Nancy's is great.

Thanks to chikafaz, UK.

A final note to all those leaving California for The Promised Land in the Midwest: Best of luck. Don't let the door hit ya in the ass on the way out.


We will never have true reform of any kind as long as we allow shit like this to go on:

HELENA — Liz Fowler, a key staffer for U.S. Sen. Max Baucus who helped draft the federal health reform bill enacted in March, is joining the Obama administration to help implement the new law.

Fowler, chief health counsel for the Senate Finance Committee, which Baucus chairs, will become deputy director of the Office of Consumer Information and Oversight at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.


So far, so good? Good.


Fowler headed up a team of 20-some Senate Finance Committee staffers who helped draft the bill in the Senate. She was Baucus’ top health care aide from 2001-2005 and left that job in 2006 to become an executive at WellPoint, the nation’s largest private insurer.

She was vice president of public policy at WellPoint, helping develop public-policy positions for the company. In 2008, she rejoined Baucus to work on health reform legislation.


Am I the only one who's asking what exactly is getting protected here? Somehow, I think health insurers have nothing to fear.

Great thanks to Jill for the link.

Who knew ...

The Republicans read classic literature? No, not Ayn Rand, however their unemployment strategy sounds strikingly close to Steinbeck:


All the spoiled unemployed layabouts have to do is snap out of it and start doing the work the free market is providing. As this fine fellow from the Heritage Foundation indicated the other day on Hardball --- unemployment insurance is keeping people from piling their family in the jalopy and heading out to Nebraska where the jobs are:


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Bastille Day!

We need to erect a gallows on the National Mall but I digress. Nothing revolutionary, just a happy little tune ... sorta. You don't need to understand French.

Benabar - Le Diner

Quote of the Day

That rude man:

... Ya gotta admire the phrase "entitlement people." It's the newest way to say, "Niggers." ...

Waltzing at the Doomsday Ball

Joe Bageant via YubaNet:

Capitalism is dead, but we still dance with the corpse

AJIJIC, Jalisco, Mexico, July 6, 2010 - As an Anglo European white guy from a very long line of white guys, I want to thank all the brown, black, yellow and red people for a marvelous three-century joy ride. During the past 300 years of the industrial age, as Europeans, and later as Americans, we have managed to consume infinitely more than we ever produced, thanks to colonialism, crooked deals with despotic potentates and good old gunboats and grapeshot. Yes, we have lived, and still live, extravagant lifestyles far above the rest of you. And so, my sincere thanks to all of you folks around the world working in sweatshops, or living on two bucks a day, even though you sit on vast oil deposits. And to those outside my window here in Mexico this morning, the two guys pruning the retired gringo's hedges with what look like pocket knives, I say, keep up the good work. It's the world's cheap labor guys like you -- the black, brown and yellow folks who take it up the shorts -- who make capitalism look like it actually works. So keep on humping. Remember: We've got predator drones.

Quite long, but worth a read.

Limpbawl uses Steinbrenner's death to race-bait

I don't follow stick-and-ball sports, but I've heard of Mr. Steinbrenner because he was controversial enough at times to make the news outside the sports page. I neither like him nor dislike him and couldn't care less, but this one makes my blood boil:

Raw Story

Conservative pundit Rush Limbaugh must have felt jealous that Mel Gibson was hogging the racially insensitive spotlight so he decided to "pay tribute" to Yankees owner George Steinbrenner on the day that he died by injecting race into the mix.

Media Matters caught Rush Limbaugh using George Steinbrenner's death as an occasion for race-baiting.

"That cracker made a lot of African-American millionaires," Limbaugh said Tuesday. "He fired a bunch of white guys as managers left and right."

Much more.

That racist bastard couldn't even wait to let the body get cold before he uses it to make racist remarks.

I take back my opening remark in part. There's one ball game I would dearly love to watch and cheer for right now: Motorcycle Polo with Limbaugh's head.

Taking that a step farther, there's enough wingnut racist bastards that Motorcycle Polo should have its own animal-friendly leatherless World Cup.

Mel Gibson's 10 tips for sexist monsters

If it's Wednesday, it must be Morford.

Herein, some tips for those looking to hone their own personal ranty hatemongering sexist jerkface skillset:

1. First, last and always: Make lots and lots of money. I mean, truckloads. Mountains. Even more than you are imagining right now. No, no, I mean even more than that. Look, take that amount, multiply it by 100, then smack yourself in the skull with a petrified copy of "Lethal Weapon 4" until swarms of that amount are swirling around your head like bees. We're talking giant, obscene piles of it, strewn about Mel's personal Holy Family Catholic cult compound like piles of James Caviezel's trashed career.

In the parlance of the rich and repellant, Mel's millions -- a large portion of which he made on the sick success of "Passion of the Christ" -- is called "f-- you" money. It completely inures you from the slings and arrows of outrageous bloggers, creditors, film investors and divorce attorneys. It's the kind of money that allows you to do whateverthehell you want, because no one can touch you. Even if the lawyers take half, you'll still have plenty left over to buy lots of Russian hookers, vodka and the femur bone of Michael Jackson.

I've got my 'Eff You' money. Not as much as Gibson, so I have to say it a little more quietly, as in 'barely audible' and then only on special occasions like in this blog.

True sexist prickmonsters know that to attain true monsterhood, you gotta combine various evils. Stack them high and proud. This is the only real path to lasting disrepute. Try this: Sexist racist anti-Semitic drunk wife-beating verbal abuser sadomasochistic misogynist extremist religious bonk job with a torture fetish. See? Much better. All that's missing is raging homophobe. Wait, it was there before. Hmm.

4. Remember all the countless thousands of fundamentalist Christians and confused old people who numbly trucked in by the busload to watch "Passion of the Bloodbath" over and over again, often hauling their bewildered, horrified children along with them to witness what is easily one of the most grisly, disgusting, masochistic slasher-porn flicks masquerading as a "true" religious tale in the history of film?

They're the ones who basically made #1 possible. Which in turn, enabled #2. So on the path to monsterhood, be sure to toss a big, juicy bone to the fundamentalists, for believing so blindly in your nightmare vision of what amounts to about two lines in the Bible. Remember: Fundamentalism is always an excellent foundation for monstrous madness.

I knew that.

7. Do you know who else treats women like trash and blames them for being desirable, and claims that if they get raped, maimed, even killed, they probably deserved it for being so evil and enticing? The Taliban. Al Queda. Iraq. Most of Saudi Arabia, in fact. Radical Islam. Women are stoned to death, beaten and raped, and it's often their own fault, for being female, for being so tempting that weak, pathetic men can't control themselves.

I've said this before and I'll keep saying it: All right-wing fundies are the same the world over, from the Vatican to Mecca to you name it - pure evil. They cause most of the trouble in the world and we'd be a helluva lot better off without them.

Please read the rest.

Jon Kyl gives away the game on deficits

Ezra Klein, with video of Kyl defending the rich:

"[Y]ou should never raise taxes in order to cut taxes," Jon Kyl said on Fox News Sunday. "Surely Congress has the authority, and it would be right to -- if we decide we want to cut taxes to spur the economy, not to have to raise taxes in order to offset those costs. You do need to offset the cost of increased spending, and that's what Republicans object to. But you should never have to offset cost of a deliberate decision to reduce tax rates on Americans."

What's remarkable about Kyl's position here is that it appears to be philosophical. "You should never have to offset cost of a deliberate decision to reduce tax rates on Americans," he said. Never! This is much crazier than anything you hear from Democrats. Imagine if some Democrat -- and a member of the Senate Democratic leadership, no less -- said that as a matter of principle, spending should never be offset. He'd be laughed out of the room.

Back in the real world, tax cuts and spending increases have the exact same affect on the budget deficit. This sort of comment is how you tell people who care about the deficit apart from people who are interested in exploiting fears of the deficit to shrink the size of government. It's also the sort of comment that makes clear that the deficit commission's work is doomed, even if they do go with three-quarters spending cuts. Democrats won't accept an unbalanced product and Republicans won't accept a balanced product.

Shorter: We have to offset spending increases that do something for the great unwashed, but we don't have to offset tax cuts for the wealthy as that is simply their due.

All this 'deficit' talk from the Repugs is pure bullshit. Their hypocrisy is at least out in the open now.

Headline of the Day Zwei

The Attack of the Real Black Helicopter Gang: The IMF Is Coming for Your Social Security

They will get my Social Security when they pry my check from my cold dead hands...

Headline of the Day

From the Christian Science Monitor, of all places:

Could a $1.50 marijuana joint doom Prop. 19 in California?

Same theory as "Could 79¢ gas doom a coherent energy policy?"

Kabuki Despair

Here's a few ¶ out of a 'must read' by P.M. Carpenter quoting Alterman and Tomasky:

"America's most irresponsible, incompetent and ideologically obsessed presidency not only left most of these political and economic crises on its successor's plate, it often masked significant problems that received virtually no attention, so prominent were the crises it caused....

"The result of this malign neglect is that post-Bush America is one disaster waiting to happen after another, all of which—when they do—are laid at the feet of the current president, regardless of whether addressing them is consistent with his policy agenda. For if he does not find a way to do so, they will likely overwhelm it....

"Faced with countless challenges merely to restore some sensible equilibrium to US policy regarding say, long-term deficits or financial regulation, Obama faces the conundrum of a system that, as currently constructed, gives the minority party no strategic stake in sensible governance. [...]

"We grew up with a set of assumptions. If you were born in the United States between, say, 1945 and 1965, you were raised in a basically liberal political culture when liberalism was the default position....

"When Reagan came, you thought: aberration....

"Thirty years later–actually, about 27 years later, or three or so years ago – I started to ask myself: What if all these presumptions I grew up with were wrong? What if Reagan wasn’t an aberration? What if Roosevelt and Johnson were the aberrations?...

"Think of this: We’ve experienced the greatest economic crisis since the 1930s, and the only mass movement to emerge from that reality is a right-wing populist one. [...]

I think 'right-wing populist' is a cruel oxymoron. Get the loonies all stirred up by promising you'll give the fucking morons what they want and hope they are loud enough to suck in enough people to get you elected and then back to business as usual and try to get all the money for your real bosses. Fuck 'em and forget 'em.

"I say that a perhaps paradoxical comfort can be taken in these facts. If we insist on thinking of Obama–and in our personality-driven political culture, it’s so hard not to do this–as liberalism’s redeemer, he will always disappoint, as redeemers usually do. But if we think of him as one piece on a vexing historical chess board in a match that will take years to play out, we can exhale, and see the true shape of the tasks ahead of us."

Shorter: There was so much damage caused to this country in the Reagan-Bush years that we're screwed for the foreseeable future.

Did BP Free the Lockerbie Bomber?

Daily Beast

BP CEO Tony Hayward was taken by surprise Tuesday by several U.S. senators' call for an investigation into BP's role in seeking the premature release of Abdel Basset al Megrahi, convicted in 2001 for the bombing of a Pan Am flight over Lockerbie in Scotland. Beleaguered by the continuing Gulf oil spill caused in part by the legacy of John Browne, BP's former CEO, Hayward finds himself stuck with another poisoned inheritance from Browne—who personally flew to Libya several times with MI-6 officers to secretly negotiate access to Libya's oil. The deal, announced in 2004 by Tony Blair, was hailed as a breakthrough.

[...] Sen Frank Lautenberg has called for an investigation into whether BP lobbied the British government to prematurely release al Megrahi as part of a deal to get access to Libyan oil. The corporation admits mentioning al Megrahi's continued incarceration as a block to an oil deal.

Al Megrahi was released by the Scottish government under pressure from then-British prime minister Gordon Brown. Currently BP lacks the political clout in Washington to fight the senators’ campaign, but will urgently seek help from allies.

Apparently, letting the terrorist bastard die in jail like he should have stood in the way of a big money deal. After all, we can't let blowing a coupla hundred people out of the sky get in the way of the bottom line.

I hope someone at BP has to answer for this, but they probably won't.


Ol' Fez:

This is an outrage, if television shows can start saying "fuck", "rimjob", "bukkake" and even "Jonah Goldberg" without fear of penalty then one of the unique joys of blogging has indeed been diminished.


No doubt. When I start going on* with "fuck this", "fuck that", and "fuck them" in polite conversation, I can usually expect a kick in the shin from the Mrs. under the table. Blogging is safer. Heh ...

*Which usually means I shouldn'ta had that last drink. Heh ...

I never liked the guy ...

But the man was one of NYC's most interesting characters. I'll miss George Steinbrenner (not because of what he did for the Yankees, but for what he did for NYC) and so will a lot of people he helped out over the years. He brought "asshole" to an art form but he was also one of the most generous NYers.


Steinbrenner also had a soft side. He sometimes read about high school athletes who had been injured and sent them money to go to college. He paid for the medical school expenses of Ron Karnaugh after the swimmer's father died during the opening ceremony at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.

Steinbrenner kept older friends from his football days on the payroll, had a way of rehiring those he had once fired and liked to give second chances to those who had fallen from favor, such as Darryl Strawberry and Dwight Gooden.


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Nevada Senate Candidate Sharron Angle Is a Fucking Retard, Too

As you know, I'm only a few miles from Nevada and am taking immense schadenfreude watching this idiot step on her dick. I'm convinced she's a Reid plant. All the way from Noo Yawk, The Rude Pundit is watching too. A good read, with links.

You can actually see the moment that Fox "news" host Neil Cavuto loses his will to live. It's at about the five minute mark in his interview with Republican Senate candidate Sharron Angle. Cavuto can't get his mind around Angle's allegation that Senator Harry Reid somehow did something wrong by helping MGM Resorts not go bankrupt by making a few calls to banks to give the mega-employer in Vegas more leeway in its loans as it builds the massive City Center. Angle had previously said that federal stimulus funds were given to MGM, which was an ignorant lie.

And here she was, on Cavuto's show, and Cavuto told her it wasn't a stimulus, asking, "Were you not aware that the company did not receive any stimulus money, but that Harry Reid was just phoning lenders on behalf of a big employer in your state?"

To which Angle replied, "Well, truly, he was exercising his influence to do a bailout, if you will, of MGM, at the expense of others."

He was doing his job.

Angle is a less-evolved Sarah Palin, who knows to never say anything specific about anything unless you fill your speech with random buzzwords for obfuscation. But this is what you get, GOP, when you allow a power-hungry twit with cash run the joint: a bunch of teabagging nuts who are Team Palin, her "Mama Grizzlies" and others, men, who apparently aren't going to be called "Papa Grizzlies," since male grizzly bears are assholes. By the way, fun facts about grizzly bears: human hunters in places like Alaska are their greatest threat, and, unlike Sarah Palin, Mama Grizzlies have a low reproduction rate.

Angle, though, is a very special bear, indeed. And you could see the despair in Neil Cavuto's eyes and hear the doubt in his voice when he said to the candidate, "[T]his wasn't a bailout, right? This was simply just having its loans extended. No federal money was involved." You could tell he was saying, "Please, please, take my hand on this one or Rupert will make me blow his dog for his amusement again."

Film at 11? Wheeeee!

Weakly, he continued in desperation, "MGM Mirage is very big employer, if not the biggest, in your fine state. So, U.S. senator, if you were duly elected, wouldn't do that? You wouldn't be doing everything possible to keep that big employer employing people?" Angle said, essentially, "Nope."

Ahh, Neil Cavuto, being Sarah Palin's bitch is not as fun as you were led to believe, is it?

Probably be more fun if she took the nails outta her whip and quit lending it to morons.

Bored Tuesday Weird Repug Shit

TPM must have a guy who just looks for weird Repug shit. I think I found him.

GOP Candidate: Obama And Carnahan Want To Take Away Your Chance To Find The Lord (AUDIO)

Un-fucking-believable, but people'll fall for it.

And this jewel:

Palin Spent Almost $4K On Supporters' Sausages

Normally I wouldn't touch that line (much less Moosebreath!) with your sausage, but I liked this photo that was in the piece:

That's a beautiful Winchester Model 94 (I think) she's holding. It's some kind of commemorative edition, way too pretty to beat up in a saddle scabbard. Probably in .30-30, reputedly one of the best and most rugged short range brushpoppers ever. I had one of those that I had to send back to the factory because I couldn't hit jack shit with it. I think they straightened the barrel or something. I sold it to a buddy for what I had in it and he filled his freezer with it every year up in Idaho. Probly still does. If it was still as inaccurate as it was when I had it, he'da had to hold up liquor stores with it to eat...

Maybe they use the bad barrels for commemorative editions, probably rightly figuring folks'll hang 'em on the wall and never shoot them.

Absolutely fitting for Palin: a tarted up plain jane, symbol over substance, costs more than it's worth, and inerringly shoots wide of the mark. They should get her nips hard, then freeze her and hang her on the wall. Best use.

I don't know what that is right behind her. Coffin fulla reindeer jerky, maybe.

Bizarro Headline of the Day

Shrimps 'becoming hooked on Prozac that is flushed into the sea'

I get this awful visual of a stoned shrimp saying the shrimp equivalent of "'Sup, duuuuude?" as he climbs into my shrimp cocktail...

Headline of the Day

I think our theme so far today is low- and mis-information pols and people without whom the Repug party could not exist.

From BuzzFlash:

"Republican Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana says he supports conservative organizations challenging President Barack Obama's citizenship in court." What do you expect from a guy who wears diapers when patronizing prostitutes?

I expect he pays extra for poopy drawers sex.

We don't need no stinking facts ... el segundo

Tony Peyser

GOP Insists Boehner’s Recent Streak Of Blunders Are Part Of A Cunning Plan To Regain Power

In related news, Mel Gibson’s latest tirades

Are not something one would call pretty

But were cleverly aimed to gain attention

From the Nobel Peace Prize committee.

Also see "'Speaker Boehner'? GOP Leader Steps It Up While Stepping In It" at TPM.

It's Repug Opposite World - it doesn't matter what any of 'em say or do. What's important is what they tell their unbending low information base what to think (for lack of a better word) about what they say he said.

See "We don't need no stinking facts ..." just below.

We don't need no stinking facts ...

We know we're right. A troubling post by Digby sorta confirms what I've been feeling for a while.


In the end, truth will out. Won’t it?

Maybe not. Recently, a few political scientists have begun to discover a human tendency deeply discouraging to anyone with faith in the power of information. It’s this: Facts don’t necessarily have the power to change our minds. In fact, quite the opposite. In a series of studies in 2005 and 2006, researchers at the University of Michigan found that when misinformed people, particularly political partisans, were exposed to corrected facts in news stories, they rarely changed their minds. In fact, they often became even more strongly set in their beliefs. Facts, they found, were not curing misinformation. Like an underpowered antibiotic, facts could actually make misinformation even stronger.


We will have a Republican House (at the least) come January.

A man of the people ...

Now, get the fuck out ... finally:

A year after railing about the high tax burden on wealthy New Yorkers, Rush Limbaugh, the conservative radio talk-show host, is severing one more tie with New York, selling his lushly decorated Fifth Avenue penthouse to an undisclosed buyer.

Mr. Limbaugh's 10-room condominium, which features a 30-foot-wide living room with fireplace and four terraces overlooking Central Park at East 86th Street, went into contract Thursday for a bit under the final $12.95 million asking price, brokers said.


Yeah, just a regular guy with a $13mln condo overlooking the Park. At least he's finally leaving.

Great thanks to Watertiger for the link.


Heh ... Res Ipsa:


That's one less jerk roaming our streets. Now if we could just send Joe Scarborough packing.


Monday, July 12, 2010

Holy Foreskin!

Sometimes I run across stuff on topics that make me wonder if everybody but me is crazy and then I remove all doubt and go crazy too.

Bad Latitude @ EssEffChron

If you've ever wondered what it took to make mild-mannered travel guru Rick Steves utter the phrase "Jesus' penis" (and seriously, who among us hasn't wondered that?), author Dave Farley knows.

The answer: Spend five years in Rome and an odd-ball nearby village writing a book about, among other things, "the Holy Foreskin." (Steves, who has whimsy to spare, featured Farley, a New York-based travel writer, on his radio show, managing to hit almost every euphemism possible for the topic.)

Farley's book, "An Irreverent Curiosity: In Search of the Church's Strangest Relic in Italy's Oddest Town," answers every question you might have had about "the only piece of flesh (Jesus) would have left on Earth when he ascended into Heaven."

Oy. There's more and even funnier. Apparently this is a huge item of discussion in the Vatican, experts on penises to a man. The part that makes the most sense:

(Editor's note: Under new Federal Trade Commission guidelines, it should subtly be disclosed that Farley gave me a free copy of the book -- and that we discussed the topic over Guinness and tequila shots in a New York nightclub before the discussion turned to finding a bar that had a mechanical bull. I think.)

Alcohol and bull. Now that I believe.

BTW, I almost titled this post "Tip of the Day", but I restrained myself.


I actually got to thinking about circumcision yesterday. I was trying to do an end run around the (very) high cost of a spark arrestor for my trials bike by making one myself. I was using parts from different things I had laying around - old Hodaka motorcycle, a shovel with no handle, and a tea strainer - and I was cutting one part off a little at a time to get an inside diameter that would fit over the muffler end. I was being careful and trying to avoid having to say the one thing you don't want to hear from a mohel: "Oops. Sorry, Shorty!"

Ask? Do tell!

El Rude-o:

Five Questions Deleted from the Pentagon's Survey of Soldiers on Don't Ask, Don't Tell:

3. If you are at war and under fire and the only service member who can assist you is gay, do you:

A. Just let yourself get killed.
B. Allow yourself to be assisted and then call the service member, "Fag" or "Dyke."
C. Are you fucking kidding? Straight, gay, I'd go down on him/her all night if he/she saved my ass.

4. If you were to have anal relations with a service member of the same sex (which may or may not involve a dildo), would you be:

A. Pitching
B. Catching

5. Can we watch?

Fox legal analyst: Bush should have been indicted

Raw Story

Fox News' senior judicial analyst made some surprising remarks Saturday that may go against the grain at his conservative network.

In a interview with Ralph Nader on C-SPAN's Book TV to promote his book Lies the Government Told You, Judge Andrew Napolitano said that President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney should have been indicted for "torturing, for spying, for arresting without warrant."

There's a sane person at F**Noise. Imagine that. I bet he won't be there much longer.

Oh, the irony...

Ironic Times

In Last Decade, Extreme Weather Deaths in U.S. Outnumbered American War Casualties
Despite government's best efforts.

Glenn Beck Starts Own University
Offers graduate degree in Paranoid Studies.

Early Humans Settled in England 800,000 Years Ago
Evidence: fossilized overcooked vegetables.

Study: Rich More Likely to Default on Their Mortgage
And move into their beach house.

Vocabulary Builders

Victory n. hanging around until nobody is paying attention anymore and you can go home.

Post it!



You worked hard and played by the rules, and now people in expensive suits who sat in offices recklessly gambling with other people's money want to stop you from being able to retire.

They exported jobs to other countries and made it harder to start new businesses to create new jobs. They slashed government spending to the point where even schools are closing. They failed to honor contracts that said they would put money into your pension fund, and now there is no pension fund. And now they want your unemployment insurance so they can gamble that away, too.

They say you need to tighten your belt to pay for their mistakes.

Well, why should you?

You paid for insurance to protect you from this. Demand what you paid for.

Social Security: You paid for it. We have the money. You earned it. You deserve it. And they don't.


Remember when?

The health care debate was going on and we heard all the bogus horror stories about the European and Canadian systems?

... To hear some folks tell it, you could imagine every third European dropping dead in the streets on a regular basis and the rest languishing in pain for months at a time.


And the taxes they pay over there, everybody's broke, right? Not:


Remember all that right wing trashing of Canada and its health care system during the debate in this country? We were told that the Canadian health care system and their resulting taxation were crushing their economy. Then why is their economy rebounding better than ours and adding jobs that our tax cut dogma hasn’t? If Canada can add back all of the jobs they’ve lost since 2008 and have universal health care at the same time, can we please dispense with the tea party nonsense?


Whatever tax cuts the middle class got were minimal compared to what the rich (and corporations) walked away with. A sweetener, or shiny shit for us to look at, so we didn't notice the taste. How are ya doing with that ... what was it ... $600 you got back from Bush? How long did that last when you lost your job and your health care? A Canadian or European loses his job, he doesn't have to worry about being able to take his kids to the doctor when they need it.

If you'll notice, the Canadian banks didn't take as bad a hit, and there wasn't a "bailout" north of the border, when our economy tanked. It's because they have real regulation, not whatever you'd call the bullshit system we have here. It's about time for people to realize we've gotten too used to irresponsible government and stop voting against their own interest.

But wait ... this is America.


And here's something else you're gonna have to pay for:


They walked away from their massive banking debts and unloaded them on you. They sc-r-ree-eeched about the poor and middle class walking away from the homes. And now they, themselves, are walking away from their even bigger mortgage disasters that they, themselves, built.


The only thing 'socialist' in this country is that we're all covering the losses of the wealthy.

America: Of, by, and for the rich.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Mopar Dreamin'

I wonder if they're dreamin' of a tall cool Plymouth gin...

The Dirt Band ~ An American Dream (with Linda Ronstadt)

Thanks to MogipbobAnimation, Canada.

Ya can't make this shit up...

The Amazing Mr Smith - Mull of Kintyre on the condom bagpipe, at Clennell Hall Folk Festival May 2010.

Thanks to banjostead, UK.

The 'S' Word


DONNER SUMMIT, July 10, 2010 - Boreal Mountain Resort is spinning a chairlift in July 10th and 11th for skiers and snowboarders to enjoy summer snow.

This weekend Boreal Mountain Resort will run the Castle Peak Quad chairlift granting access to a ribbon of snow left behind after the record setting snowfall Boreal saw this spring. "Almost 500 inches of snow fell this winter, with several feet falling after Boreal closed. We decided since all this snow was on the mountain, it would be fun to enjoy it for a couple days in July," said Jon Slaughter, Boreal Marketing Director. "It's a novelty to be able to ski in the summer. Something worth celebrating," Slaughter added. Boreal will provide a terrain park on one trail. Barbeque and beverages are available. Bring sunscreen and a hearty appetite for snow.

If you could see through the mountain in the photo, you'd see where I participated in the motorcycle trial last weekend. You can plainly see the snow on the next mountain range south in this video. Nobody bulldozed it into a strip for publicity, though. It worked for Boreal. Quite a few people showed up yesterday, most of 'em in T-shirts and shorts. Or TV satellite trucks.

Donner Summit has the highest average annual snowfall of any year 'round inhabited place in the United States. A lot of the homes up there have exterior doors on the second floor with no stairways to them. Heh.

A last gasp for last winter. 80° and snow on the ground. Winter will start again on August 1st when Orion begins to appear on the eastern horizon at dawn.

Ya might call this crazy. I call it home.

Quote of the Day


Mel Gibson and Bill O'Reilly have a common philosophy...except amazingly, Gibson is a bigger douchebag ...


Comrade Misfit on immigration enforcement that works:


Arresting and deporting illegal migrants does not work, but it gives lots of jobs to law enforcement and those who run the private prisons that have become ICE's black sites. trying the idea of "maybe they won't come if there is no work for them to do" apparently really upsets the party of Hoover, not to mention their donors from industries that use undocumented workers.


The status quo works out well for the Republicans. Their Big Ag donors who hire undocumented workers continue to have a workforce and their Big Prison donors get to lock up the ones they catch. Hey, there's 12 million of 'em.

It's sorta like the defense budget:


If anything disqualifies Sarah Palin as a serious candidate for national office, it ought to be that statement, that she cannot fathom a situation where we have to reduce the defense budget from $700 billion a year back down into the $300-400 billion a year range. She must have no understanding about the need for defense acquisition reform or to develop a defense budget while recognizing the need to fund the rest of the federal government, because no one who has seriously examined defense issues would make such an idiotic statement.


Another place where Republican donors make their money. We spend more on defense than all of the world's armies combined. What the fuck are we supposed to be protecting ourselves from?

The Republicans are all about separating us from what little money we have left. I wonder when Wal-Mart will bring back the concept of "company towns".