Friday, October 31, 2014

FOUR DAYS AWAY FROM A REPUBLICAN SENATE MAJORITY (the reason nothing Halloween has to offer is scarier than reality)

            You've probably seen the Facebook meme in which a kid offers to dress as a Republican for Halloween in order to scare homosexuals, women, minorities, Mexicans, and old people.  It's supposed to be humorous.  But what we're about to witness next Tuesday is anything but.

            It's hard to believe that people across the nation have watched government gridlock inaction (not IN action, because there's been far too little of it) and have decided the solution to Washington's problem is Republican control of both chambers of Congress.  I can't wrap my head around any question that ends with that "solution".  But according to the pollsters, that's exactly where America is headed.

            How this will play out in the aftermath of Tuesday's midterm bloodletting is anyone's guess, but here are a few things you can count on if the GOP takes control of the Senate:

            They'll spend an inordinate amount of time passing bills designed to defund or repeal The Affordable Care Act in both houses of Congress, and any resultant laws they pass will be promptly vetoed by President Obama.  In other words, much will be made of their efforts to save America from this socialist plot, but nothing whatsoever will come of it, other than this: the average American who has gained health care coverage through the ACA will get a very clear look at which political party gives a shit about them and which one is posing for the cameras.

             Immigration reform will die on the vine.  No Republican is going to risk his political life stepping out in front of the legislative freight train that is coming down the tracks in the wake of a GOP Senate takeover.  If President Obama is to be faulted for anything in his first six years in office, it could very well be the failure to demand meaningful immigration reform when he still had Democratic control of the Senate.  His unwillingness to use executive orders to impose portions of the Dream Act will come back to haunt us all... right on time for Halloween.  See what I did there?

              Both houses of Congress will begin to push anti-abortion measures in committee bills.  The resultant damage to reproductive rights will be minimal, but Americans will finally have to face this issue on a national level, instead of through piecemeal state by state legislation.  The bright side of this quandary is that women will finally, at long last, get a crystal clear contrast between the political parties as they relate to women's reproductive freedom.  Why any woman would vote Republican has always befuddled progressives, but after the midterms there will be plenty of reasons for those women to reassess their priorities before the 2016 election.

               In fact, losing the Senate might be exactly what Democrats need.  Republicans will finally have to actually lead through their legislation, instead of just pandering to their lowest common denominator base voter.  President Obama will wield veto power to stop the most egregious of laws from being enacted, and the Republican agenda will be on full display for the voters in the next two years.

               So in that respect, Tuesday's election might yet have a silver lining.

               But before we shrug it off, let's consider the big ol' dark cloud and not the bright fringe:  if (heaven forbid) an opening occurs on the Supreme Court, we're all screwed... for generations.

                A Republican Senate will control the nomination process for a Supreme Court appointment, and anyone who thinks THAT bodes well for America is doing way better drugs than I.  

                If you haven't voted yet, you still have time to make a difference.  If you haven't voted and don't intend to because you think your vote doesn't matter, do the rest of us a favor and kindly shut the fuck up for the next couple of years whenever political issues are being discussed by people who give a shit.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

JOSE CAN YOU SEE (your finger)? Canseco shoots off his middle finger cleaning his gun...

            Jose Canseco's fiancee had to file a police report after the former steroid mutant baseballer accidentally blew off his middle finger while "cleaning" his gun in their kitchen.  According to Leila Knight, Canseco had been shooting at a gun range earlier and didn't know the Ruger pistol was loaded.

            Here's a slightly altered pic of the former Bash Brother preparing to testify before Congress in 2005...

                How is it that people with handguns never seem to know when they've got a live round in the chamber?  Is there a way to idiot-proof pistols in order to alert owners to the fact that the weapon is loaded?

                Or is it folly to expect idiots to know what they're doing?

Sunday, October 26, 2014

"IT'S A SIGN! A SIGN FROM THE LORD!" (with apologies to Monty Python, we shall endeavor to enlighten...)

           I'm pretty sure we could be wealthy any minute now.  I mean, I see on the news and in the papers all the time where someone has found an image of Jesus in their toast, or of Mother Teresa on a bagel.  They publicize their "miracle", and followers from various cults swarm to see it for themselves.  Ka-Ching!  Surely, somewhere out there, someone lies awake dreaming of the day Roger Rabbit returns from the grave in some miraculous fashion.  Perhaps even through a fashion statement!

           Personally, I don't think about Roger Rabbit very often.  Maybe once or twice since I saw the movie, and only then because someone made a reference to "Jessica Rabbit" as a favorable comparison for some sexy woman somewhere.  Jessica Rabbit was (indeed) hot.  Roger definitely married above his station.

          But while we're on the subject of hot women, I might as well tell you what this is about...

          My lovely (and oh so dangerous) wife teaches cardio/kickboxing classes three days a week, and whenever she does, she loses prodigious amounts of fluids via sweat.  On the days she takes advanced karate classes and THEN teaches her own cardio class, not only does she come home with a karate gi that is totally saturated with sweat, but her cardio workout clothes are soaked, too.  She's a sweaty woman when she works out.  (I, on the other hand, avoid sweaty situations...)

           Yesterday morning after her cardio class, my wife turned to leave the kitchen and I couldn't help but notice she had somehow managed to sweat herself a masterpiece.  In fact, I was so dazzled, I made her take off her shirt right there on the spot, just so I could capture the image for posterity.

           Here it is.  This is a completely unretouched photo of my wife's tee shirt after cardio class:

           Am I the only one who sees the image of Roger Rabbit in that sweat pattern?

           Those of you who are thinking of traveling to our fair city just to see or touch the holy rabbit shirt, be advised:  My wife thinks I'm nuts, and she washed the shirt as soon as I got through taking a photo of it.

            Sigh... she just has no sense of marketing to the rubes...


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

FETUS FREAKS OBJECT TO EMBRYONIC STEM CELL EBOLA VACCINE... (because a cure derived from the unborn should never be used to save millions of the "already" born...)

          It's getting harder and harder for me to ignore the fetus fetish crowd.  Every time I turn on the television or radio lately I'm subjected to somber warnings concerning Amendment 1 here in Tennessee, and the newspapers have been running editorials and letters on the subject for weeks.  

         Amendment 1, for those of you who aren't fortunate enough to live in the Volunteer State, is a GOP sponsored dog whistle wedge issue on the midterm ballot designed to help our rosy red legislature make abortions impossible to obtain in Tennessee.  That's not how it's being sold, of course, because the majority of people still support legal and safe abortion rights in this country.  No... it's being sold as a compassionate way to make sure women aren't subjected to unregulated or unsafe clinic conditions when they go in for a procedure.  It's all very slick, what they're trying to do, but if you know what time it is it's pretty obvious they're simply trying to find a way to circumvent Roe v Wade here in cracker country.  Reproductive clinics in Tennessee are very tightly regulated, and they're as safe as any hospital anywhere... but if they can sell this Amendment as an effort to protect those "poor women in their time of need", well, there you go.

           On top of the constant barrage of anti-abortion noise from the right concerning this amendment to our state's constitution, now I'm reading that some folks are upset because potentially lifesaving Ebola vaccines are being developed from embryonic stem cell lines.

           Oh, perish the thought!

           There's a group out there called Children of God for Life that is organizing petitions and protests, because discarded unborn zygotes from fertility clinics are WAY more important than actual post-birthed sufferers all over the globe.  Seriously.  They're opposed to an Ebola vaccine if it's developed from an embryonic stem cell line.

           Let me end this little rant as quickly as possible, because I'm beginning to get pissed...

           Let's see how quickly the average fetus worshiping conservative changes his or her tune once they (or someone they love) contracts Ebola.  My guess is they'll take their oozing orifices to the nearest Ebola clinic and push their way to the front of the line for one of those embryo soup injections just like those of us who DON'T spend all of our time and money worrying that every sperm is sacred.

           These gung-holier-than-thou assholes make me wanna hurl.  They moan and groan over a clump of cells the size of a Tic Tac, but turn a blind eye to actual children who are dying of this disease in Africa.  It's hard for me to get my head around that.  They'll stand out in the rain and sing to save the life of one unborn baby, but won't lift a finger to save thousands of living, breathing, walking, talking children who could use their compassion and concern right fucking now.

            There really should be a name for the psychosis that makes that possible.




Monday, October 20, 2014

PUMPKIN RIOTS??? (Good grief, Charlie Brown...)

          When I first saw the story concerning rioting at a pumpkin festival in lily white Keene, New Hampshire, I thought the story must be a creation of those funny guys at "The Onion."  After all, riot police firing rubber bullets and tear gas into a crowd of unruly pumpkin festival goers is too bizarre to be true, right?  But this wasn't fake news from a satirical website, it was actual news from a lot of independent sources.  Dozens of arrests were made.  Dozens of young people were treated for injuries at local hospitals.  It qualified as a riot, by anyone's standards.

           Folks in Ferguson, Missouri must be wondering what's wrong with white folks.  I mean, it's not like some cop shot an unarmed student for walking down the middle of the street.  

           My theory is that white kids in New Hampshire desperately need a cause.  It's one thing to go out and overturn cars and throw bottles if your favorite team has finally brought home an NBA or NFL title.  That's an American tradition, as time honored as fireworks on the Fourth of July, or a trip to the gym after overeating for an entire Thanksgiving weekend.  It's just what you do when you aren't busy with something important.  Ask anybody.

           But gathering to drink and rage in a quiet little Mayberry-esque village in October?  Shit, people, this isn't spring break at Daytona Beach!

           No... the kids at Keene State College and the surrounding area really need some way to vent their pent up emotions and energy.

           Too bad we don't have a couple of never ending wars to protest, or a creeping theocracy in our state and federal government to stand up against.  I imagine Elizabeth Warren would have been willing to interrupt her nascent presidential campaign to attend if those kids had been raging in the street about the government's on-going practice of student loan usury.

           But a pumpkin festival?

           Good grief...