23 June 2008

Egads! WTF?

George Denis Patrick Carlin
May 12, 1937 - June 22, 2008

While everyone should go watch the seminal "Seven Dirty Words" bit, I'm gonna post a more recent favorite of mine.

A little more on this later. . .

20 June 2008

Welp, there goes my vote. . .

What I am about to propose is crossing some lines that we can’t step back across. It’s a two-step solution.

Step One: Bury the corpse of the Democratic Party.
Step Two: Make a corpse of the Republican Party.

- Lighting the Fuse - Stan Goff 2006

That quote has always stuck with me for some reason. Now I know why.

Sorry Senator, you lost a supporter today. (Actually, I'm pretty sure you're gonna, deservedly, lose a shitload of supporters after letting that submissive trash out of the press shop.) Seriously, if you're going to act like a little bitch to, quite possibly, the most loathed minority party in modern history, you have no business calling yourself a leader or being the President of the United States. If I didn't know any better I would have swore that statement was written by a fucking Republican. Good day and good riddance.

UPDATE: I realize there is a difference between arguing principle and arguing politics. The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States is not a questionable subsidy or some other form of horse trading common with politics. It's the God damned Fourth Amendment to the Fucking Constitution of this seemingly cursed country! A principle of liberty if there ever was one. This is not comparable to an earmark or some corporate give-away. It is a right, guarantee and liberty enshrined in the very document that makes this society possible.

But since, it appears, immunity is for sale, who do I have to pay and how much so I can smoke a joint without worrying about my legal liability?

14 June 2008

RIP 'Timmeh'

Timothy John Russert, Jr.
(May 7, 1950 – June 13, 2008)
Death is nothing at all.
It does not count.
I have only slipped away into the next room.
Everything remains as it was.
The old life that we lived so fondly together is untouched, unchanged.
Whatever we were to each other, that we are still.
Call me by the old familiar name.
Speak of me in the easy way which you always used.
Put no sorrow in your tone.
Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes that we enjoyed together.
Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was.
Let it be spoken without effort
Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same as it ever was.
There is unbroken continuity.
Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight?
I am but waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just around the corner.
All is well. Nothing is hurt; nothing is lost.
One brief moment and all will be as it was before.
How we shall laugh at the trouble of parting, when we meet again.

My deepest condolences to his wife Maureen, son Luke, father Timothy "Big Russ" Russert and all their family and friends. Your loss must be unbearable and I wish for nothing but peace, comfort and solace in your grieving. Godspeed.

UPDATE: A bit of levity courtesy of Ezra Klein:
Presumably, he's up somewhere beyond the cloudline, hectoring God about His inconsistencies. "But Lord, in Exodus 6:12, you clearly said..."


04 June 2008

Game on!

History was made at the Xcel Energy Center on June 3rd, 2008 as Senator Barack Obama secured the Democratic nomination for President and all but kicked off the general election campaign with a rousing speech in the same arena the Republican Party will be holding it's national convention.

An excerpt from a leaked copy of the speech:
The other side will come here in September and offer a very different set of policies and positions, and that is a debate I look forward to. It is a debate the American people deserve. But what you don't deserve is another election that's governed by fear, and innuendo, and division. What you won't hear from this campaign or this party is the kind of politics that uses religion as a wedge, and patriotism as a bludgeon -- that sees our opponents not as competitors to challenge, but enemies to demonize. Because we may call ourselves Democrats and Republicans, but we are Americans first. We are always Americans first.

Despite what the good Senator from Arizona said tonight, I have seen people of differing views and opinions find common cause many times during my two decades in public life, and I have brought many together myself. I've walked arm-in-arm with community leaders on the South Side of Chicago and watched tensions fade as black, white, and Latino fought together for good jobs and good schools. I've sat across the table from law enforcement and civil rights advocates to reform a criminal justice system that sent thirteen innocent people to death row. And I've worked with friends in the other party to provide more children with health insurance and more working families with a tax break; to curb the spread of nuclear weapons and ensure that the American people know where their tax dollars are being spent; and to reduce the influence of lobbyists who have all too often set the agenda in Washington.

In our country, I have found that this cooperation happens not because we agree on everything, but because behind all the labels and false divisions and categories that define us; beyond all the petty bickering and point-scoring in Washington, Americans are a decent, generous, compassionate people, united by common challenges and common hopes. And every so often, there are moments which call on that fundamental goodness to make this country great again.

So it was for that band of patriots who declared in a Philadelphia hall the formation of a more perfect union; and for all those who gave on the fields of Gettysburg and Antietam their last full measure of devotion to save that same union.

So it was for the Greatest Generation that conquered fear itself, and liberated a continent from tyranny, and made this country home to untold opportunity and prosperity.

So it was for the workers who stood out on the picket lines; the women who shattered glass ceilings; the children who braved a Selma bridge for freedom's cause.

So it has been for every generation that faced down the greatest challenges and the most improbable odds to leave their children a world that's better, and kinder, and more just.

And so it must be for us.

Good luck responding to that, bumbles.

UPDATE: Incertus, sums it up pretty good, imo:

McCain was comatose. Clinton's speech was fine, even though lots of people online are freaking about it, and the CNN talking heads are all in a tizzy because she didn't concede tonight.

But Obama's speech was in another world, and it was about halfway through that it finally hit me why his speech was so much better than Clinton's. Clinton's speech was in a "rally the troops" mode, with a lot of focus on what she fought for and why she'd run and what her vision for the future of the country was. Obama's caught some of that last bit--which is good, since that's what presidential nominees are supposed to do--but the rest of his speech was about people other than himself. He spent a good bit of time praising Clinton, and popping McCain right in the mouth, and then concluded with a turn to the plural. He was inclusive--what we need to do, what the road ahead of us is. And if Obama keeps that up, McCain is dogmeat.

02 June 2008

Rest in Peace and Thank You.

Bo Diddley (December 30, 1928 – June 2, 2008)

For some reason, this one hurts. Even though I'm aware of the fact he lived a good long life and beyond the fact he was royally screwed by the music business; which is a thoroughly disheartening tale, but not too unexpected. Either way, it hurts.

Both are short and well worth the listen.

01 June 2008

And we will know them by the trail of their stupid

"When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." - Jonathan Swift

Followed by a personal fave. . .
"I dust a bit...in addition, I am at the moment writing a lengthy indictment against our century. When my brain begins to reel from my literary labors, I make an occasional cheese dip." - Ignatius J. Reilly in Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole

I'm pretty sure the following people are not actually with the campaign and, I hope, truly represent only a minority of Sen. Hillary Clinton's supporters. However, they do a decent job knocking the Clinton argument down from parsed legalese to a more a plain spoken form of ridiculous. Seriously. You want to see dumb-as-rocks Democrats? (Allegedly?)

I present to you, Harriet Christian (supposedly):

"[T]he Democrats are throwing the election away! For what? An inadequate black male?"

Um. . . did you really say that?

And what the fuck? I thought we were settled on his adequacies. Even Sen. Joe Biden, in his not-uncommon foot to mouth way, said Sen. Barack Obama was "articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy."

Freudian slip or not (I'm willing to believe it was,) I'm not sure that "proud ... older American woman" could have come across as anymore uninformed and, well, stupid? I realize you may have been speaking more out of anger and frustration than from any coherent angle. But keep in mind that people, when they're angry, tend to be less self-censoring and that's a very telling 'rant' in that respect.


Wow. Go vote Republican, please. Leave the rest of us the fuck alone. I also love the rehash of some of the more stupid mini-gates (I hate that suffix, btw.) There's a reason this woman won't vote for Obama and it has nothing to with Prof. William Ayers being "the bomber" or Tony Rezko's legal problems that are completely unrelated to Obama.

Semi-lucid talking points. Emphasis on "semi":

To Mr. Voter-Rights: The "voter rights" you speak of were subject to the rules of the primary as set by the DNC and agreed to BY ALL OF THE CANDIDATES. When you reconcile that cognitive dissonance - the whole "set protocol vs. desired result" thing - we'll talk about what you really think this election "is about."

Personally, I think this lady is a Republican. Substantially the same ridiculous talking points, yet she appears unemotional or detached from the lunacy required to actually believe what she's saying (as evidenced by previous clips.) But in case she's not:

Srsly? The only argument these people can give that sounds remotely like it was concocted in reality is "OMFG COUNT TEH VOTES!!!" What I wish for is that these people stop looking for reasons to not vote for the "inadequate" darker skinned 'boy' and just vote for McCain. Get out of the progressive caucus (I say 'progressive' as I'm not a Democrat.) We don't need nor want you. The results of Saturday's Rules and By-laws Committee (RBC) meeting might have given Clinton a reason for her now-beyond-ridiculous campaign to continue, but it also announced that the Obama faction is now running the Democratic party.

It's over. Barring a catastrophe, Clinton is done. Not because Obama could plausibly capture enough delegates by Tuesday night to clinch the nomination. That would be nice if it happens. Rather, as the very fascinating hearing on Saturday demonstrated, Obama is continuously confirming his influence and diplomatic tact with the party "cogs." His endorsed proposal in the most contentious delegate fight, Michigan, won by a 2 to 1 margin. (18-9, I think?) Obama could have taken the true lawyerly and/or litigious way, like Clinton has, and went to that hearing with legal guns a-blazin' and easily destroy every single argument made by the Clinton camp to the RBC. Instead he held back, worked the politics angle and left the parsing to the desperate. A brilliant strategy that has 2/3 of the RBC in alignment with him. You think the people on the Credentials Committee for the Democratic convention haven't taken notice?

So let those losers run to McCain. They obviously don't believe in progressive causes enough to put aside their racism Obamerage™ long enough to realize they're supporting a continuation of the policies they purport to oppose by, taken at their word, the very act of being Democrats. Screw 'em. They are not needed to win the general election anyways. Toodles.

On the upside, however, these morons couldn't make a stronger and more visceral argument against direct democracy. (Something, these people apparently believe we live under. We don't, btw.) I guess I should thank them for that.

(h/t to Wonkette)