Wednesday, December 30, 2009

We're Screwed...and other Bedtime Stories.

Face it...we're screwed. Oh, and Happy New Year to my non-Jewish friends. Shana Tova was in September...remember..?

Anywhoooo...

We are so lost there is really no translation left. We have a Congress that is brain dead. They cannot hear the wails of the population. We have a financial sector that is so concerned with grabbing all of the money that they possibly can that they don't hear the people sharpening the broadswords and rolling out the Guillotines...even if Paris has cleaned up the Seine and made it, theoretically, safe for swimming...although I defy you to find a sane Parisian willing to take a dip...even during the deathly heat wave of '03...heads will bob like so many apples...or pommes if you're trying to be absolutely correct. I prefer blueberry pie, by the way...and not heated...and occasionally with vanilla ice cream...in case you were wondering, which you probably weren't...

As usual...I digress (I love saying "I digress"...it sounds so cultchudd and everything.)

The manufacturing folks are still making stuff we really don't need at a cost we really can't afford with precious resources that we are fast running out of. Who gives a mechanical hamster for Christmas anyway...(someone working for the TSA maybe...?)

The energy people are so busy not developing alternatives, or giving cred to the ones already developed, that it won't really matter when they do because we'll all be swimming by then. Yo, Al...got a spare floatie...?

And the TSA...oh my...GOD!! The Transportation Safety Administration. Have you flown anywhere lately? Have you seen the clowns that masquerade as professional line security forces, committed to our safety and security? I have never been in a Special Education class and I certainly mean no disrespect to those who have...but if "Welcome Back Kotter" was any indication (I love John Travolta though...he was awesome in Saturday Night Fever and he sure can dance...1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8) then we should, in the immortal words of Ace Ventura, Pet Detective, "hang on to (our) lug nuts folks...it's time for an OVERHAUL!"

We are screwed. A guy walks onto a plane with no luggage except a cigarette lighter (hmmmm...) and sits down, waiting for an opportune moment to...LIGHT HIMSELF ON FIRE!
("A guy walks onto a plane"...sounds like the beginning of a joke...too bad it isn't)

Oh...you're not kidding me...

Now, I concede, that without searching each and every passenger in a completely naked state (what about "mules" who swallow the drugs...can you put plastic explosives in a condom and swallow them...and then, because you are a circus flame swallower...ignite your stomach and fricassee yourself and your fellow passengers...?!) we can't be totally secure...but come on...can't we do better than this? Uh...I guess not...

Uh oh...

With the combination of selfish idiocy in Congress and, forgive me, in The White House (Obama seems not to be what he seemed to be...and I was in Denver...I saw with my own eyes...I felt the love...I cried..not really but that sounds better than "I almost cried"...my wife cried though...really...) and the deft placement of morons on the front lines...we are...what was it that I said...oh yeah...

...WE ARE SCREWED!

Did I say Happy New Year...?

Well then...Happy New Year...

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

It's The Thought That Counts.

As if...

What would happen if that were a true sentiment...across all holidays and all giving?

Think of Christmas with a "Thought" being the gift.

A card that says "I love you more every year that we are together and couldn't imagine my life without you in it. Merry Christmas." (disregard the fact that the card cost $3.95...the one with the seascape and the two pairs of footprints in the sand disappearing into the distance with the ocean on the left as a lone gull flies away in the upper right hand corner...the image is in black and white to evoke a bygone era of romance and ettiquette...that's not the point here...unless you got one of the 45 cent ones at Walmart...which would still miss the point but not by as much...the one with the vase of flowers in primary colors...obviously cheaper than the $3.95 one...but still consistent with the "it's the thought that counts" concept...)

Now, honestly...do you think for a minute, in our commercial culture, that a card would suffice?

Thank yous would be forthcoming with a kiss on the cheek for extra measure...but the truth of hurt feelings would linger just below the surface...for weeks thereafter...OY! ("OY" is a universally accepted form of expression used in both the Jewish and Christian cultures...ask any New Yorker...or, if you can't find one, someone from New Jersey or Long Island.)

We seem incapable of just allowing thoughts to be enough. Imagine getting a toothbrush for your birthday or a bottle of ketchup (please...someone, anyone, Bueller...explain to me the difference between Ketchup and Catsup...what...why...?) for Father's Day or today's newspaper for Mother's Day or, Godforbid...five paperclips for an anniversary gift.

"It's the thought that counts"

Sure...right. You'd never hear the end of it. At every occasion thereafter, to anyone who would listen:

"Did you know that Stanley bought me five paperclips for our fifth wedding anniversary?
What an A**HOLE!!!!!!!!!!"

No...our culture requires that we spend money we don't have on things that people don't need or want just so we can be assured that they won't think we're cheap and/or we don't care about them.

We're not (cheap) and we do (care about them...sort of)!!

We're just broke...temporarily (next year you'll get the Porsche...I promise...)

If we had the money we'd buy you diamonds and pearls and Chateau Lafitte and dinner in Paris and...

You get the point.

Now get busy...it's almost the 25th...run out and get those paperclips...you can usually get a box of 100...divided by five...that's twenty gifts handled...!

"Alice...I have your present right here...and remember...it's the thought that counts...!"

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Denis Leary...My Hero.

Merry F#!*ing Christmas...!

I would like to say, at the outset, that I am neither anti-Christmas nor pro-Christmas.

I am anti-baloney (and not the meat...I love the meat, especially with peas...how the baloney slices, or bologna if you are that pompous, curl up in the oven like little bowls and cradle the peas, oh so delicately...but...as usual...I digress...my mother is not famous for her cooking)

I think we spend entirely too much time during this time of year saying, "Merry Christmas" when we don't really mean it.

I was honked at today by some woman in a small silver car who didn't like the fact that I, a pedestrian, was deigning to cross the street...in a heavy traffic area mind you, where she couldn't go over 5mph, even if she had wanted to. Probably, not 5 minutes prior, she had said "Merry Christmas" to someone, no doubt a stranger...why not me...why don't I get a "Merry Christmas?" She would have no sooner run me down as look at me twice. "Season's Greetings" to you too, lady...

Merry Christmas...

Bull.

We go around saying it as though it had meaning. Who's "Merry" anyway? The guy with no job who has no money to pay the rent let alone buy anything for his family?

The elected official awaiting sentencing on fraud charges who will spend the next 5 to 15 saying "Merry Christmas" to his cellmate/lover?

The fallen sports star who was scheduled to say "Merry Christmas" on behalf of the XYZ Corporation until he was found in bed saying "Mary Christmas"...and I don't mean the Virgin in the manger either...

The president of a formerly powerful and prosperous nation which is now teetering on the brink of ruin because of all of the people in the lobby saying "Merry Christmas" to one another hoisting glasses of Dom Perignon purchased with our tax dollars?

The wizards of Wall Street who will only get 500 million dollar bonuses this year instead of the customary billion? There go all of the houses in all of the Hamptons worldwide...Long Island, Massachusetts, England..."pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!"

No, I'm all for Christmas greetings. But I would like them to come from people who really mean them. From the Doctors without Borders people...or the U.N. peacekeepers around the world...or the soldiers in Quagmire (the suburb of Kabul named after the suburb of Baghdad which was named after the suburb of Saigon...)...the people who work for Red...and for the countless other people around the globe who actually do good things for 364 days of the year without a greeting of any kind. They don't need Christmas to say "Merry" anything.

The joy in their lives comes from knowing that they have helped someone today...or that they saved a child from starvation or abuse...or that they read to an old woman dying in hospice...

Definitely "Merry Christmas" to all of them and the thousands like them.

Aside from them, "Merry F#!*ing Christmas" to the rest of you...especially that old bag who shot me the bird when I attempted to cross the street...coal for you...which actually isn't a bad gift this year as fuel prices are so high...I retract the coal...here's your Public Option...

Go stuff a stocking...

Friday, December 18, 2009

Of Glass Houses, Stones...and Golf Balls

When I'm wrong I admit it.

I just thought I'd make that declaration.

I am not, however, wrong in the case of the media obsession with Tiger Woods.

TV, radio and print are engaged in a feeding frenzy about the young genius.

But come on...what a load of crap.

We are a society of hypocrites. Who among us hasn't driven over the speed limit or taken a questionable tax deduction or said "No...!" when asked, "Do I look fat in this dress?"

We hold our celebrities up to impossible standards. And then we are scandalized when they don't measure up.

We honor our elected officials and then find out, after the fact, that they are liars and cheats.

What a schock! From Bill Clinton to Mark Sanford to O. J. Simpson and now to Tiger Woods we elevate these people to hero status and then we are stunned when they transgress...

My issue is...so what!?

Just because Bill Clinton had an affair with Monica Lewinsky doesn't make him a bad President.
He did some good work. O.J. was a great football player and was, incidentally, acquitted in a court of law.

Tiger Woods is, arguably, one of the greatest golfers to ever swing an iron...and lo and behold...he cheated on his wife (albeit a whole lot of times, but that misses the point...)

Martha Stewart was convicted of insider trading and imprisoned. Now she has a talk show...again.

Oliver North was convicted (and then acquitted on appeal...) for his role in the Iran-Contra affair. Now he's a darling of the conservative right...with a talk show.

Latrell Sprewell was nearly expelled from the NBA for assaulting his coach. Now he's a revered basketball star who's jersey is worn by thousands of adoring fans.

And we dare pillory Tiger Woods for fooling around? Once again, SO WHAT!

Did we love him because he was cute? Did we love him because he was rich? Did we love him for his catchy name?

No... we loved him because he was great. He was better than we'll ever be at the game he embraced and perfected in much the same way as Michael Jackson approached his craft...another celebrity who we axed because of his alleged personal quirks (also acquitted, I hasten to add)...may he rest in peace.

A little humility on our part would go a long way. What we should do is stipulate, before we bestow celebrity status on anyone, that they are human and will reveal some hidden foible.

I can't wait for Capt. Sullenberger and Oprah and President Obama to make their revelations.

What a field day that will be.

Popcorn anyone...?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Say It Ain't So, Joe...

I am officially sick to death of Joltin' Joe Lieberman.

And I apologize for the baseball references. And my apologies, also, to Joe DiMaggio, Joe Jackson and Paul Simon...and anyone else I've offended over the years (is this a 12 step moment...?)

Joe Lieberman is, as you may know, the "Independent" Senator from Connecticut. Joseph I. (for "Independent", not "Isadore" as some have said...) Lieberman. Former Vice-Presidential candidate. Former Democrat. Former all around goodnick.

Let's return to the issue of independence for a minute, shall we...?

Independent of what? Joe Lieberman is no more independent than a newborn baby...and a heck of alot less innocent.

Independent my derriere (French for "ass")!

What is one of the largest "industries" in Connecticut you might ask?

INSURANCE!

What is Joe Lieberman's position on the health care issue you might also ask?

He's against the so-called Public Option.

And why do you think that is Dear Reader?

Could it be that the so-called (I love saying "so-called"...it sounds so, like, intellectual and like, everything...can you tell I am the father of a 'tween...?) Public Option would conflict with the profits of the INSURANCE companies?

I think it MIGHT!!

Ok...I understand that the insurance companies employ people in Joe Lieberman's Connecticut and that we're suffering through a re-depression...but don't you think that the U.S. Senate could come up with a plan that incorporates all of the positions of all of the sides of the issue?

But that would require some independent thinking on the part of the silver-haired contingent...a concept alien to them...one and all...because they are so G-damned preoccupied with money and power and re-election that they can't seem to understand that they represent us in Washington...and that we can ax them at anytime.

But that would require us, the vaunted electorate, to have some independent thought of our own...which we, so far, seem incapable of having.

The day that any of these clowns actually vote either their conscience or on behalf of the people will truly be Independent's Day.

This should make you sick...but be careful...if you don't have the right health insurance you'll die waiting for the politicians to do the right thing.

Al...what were you thinking?

Monday, November 30, 2009

Woods That it Were...!

Please stop...just stop...!

I am so sick of the Tiger Woods "story."

Headline:

"Golfer has traffic accident"

Another headline:

"Man from Terre Haute has traffic accident"

Are you kidding me?

Let's review...

1) War in Iraq
2) War in Afgahnistan
3) Double digit unemployment
4) Dubai in possible default
5) Crumbling infrastructure
6) Returning veterans
7) Global warming (maybe)
6) Oprah's retirement (Oops, sorry...I forgot...Headline: "Oprah Winfrey to Retire"...
Headline: "65 year old woman in Des Moines to Retire")

Tiger Woods hit a tree. Maybe because he had a fight with his wife. Maybe because he was drunk...or stoned...or sleep-driving...no pun intended. Big friggin' deal!

He is a gazillionaire because he figured out how to get a little ball to go into a little cup hundreds of yards away...and he's a black man doing it...not someone named Chip, III.

Let's review:

1) Global AIDS epidemic
2) Global hunger
3) Global lack of literacy
4) Global corporate corruption
5) Global governmental corruption
6) Michael Jackson died...globally

In other words...ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!!!

Tiger Woods is a great athlete...granted. He makes a lot of money because of the many endorsements he has because those companies that he endorses think we'll buy their products because Tiger Woods says they're great...and they are apparently right.

Because we, apparently, can't think for ourselves. We think that if we drive a Buick or wear Nike stuff or use a certain golf club we'll drive better (again, no pun intended), run faster and hit the ball like Tiger Woods...none of which is true.

You see, Tiger Woods is Tiger Woods and Elle Woods is Elle Woods and Muir Woods is Muir Woods and never the thwain shall meet (what is the "three" version of
"twain"...anybody...anybody...Bueller...?)

So please...just stop already.

Let's get back to business...

Is Jay Leno's show a bust?

Story at eleven...

Sunday, November 29, 2009

And the Answer is...?

I love to watch the Sunday morning pundit shows...all of them from "This Week" to "Meet The Press."

I learn from the experts and get a perspective that can be helpful in the discussions I have about the issues of the day.

But the single most infuriating thing about those shows is the fact that almost all of the politicians who are the guests refuse to actually answer the questions that are posed by the moderator.

"Senator, do you support such and such legislation?"

"Well, let me first say that I think the President has a lot of explaining to do about how he will pay for the bill."

"So, Senator, does that mean you won't support the legislation?"

"I truly feel that we need to examine the overall causes of the problem outlined in bill, with all due respect."

"So, I take that as a no."

"Now, I would not say that, but I would add that I am looking very closely at the alternatives in the marketplace, and at the end of the day, going forward, we are very interested in understanding the impact that the legislation will have on working families and veterans."

Huh?

The question was, "Senator, do you support such and such legislation?"

Choose from one of the three following possibilities:

1) Yes

2) No

3) Maybe

Is that so hard?

And these clowns in Washington wonder why we don't trust them...

Try ANSWERING THE QUESTION!!

Thank you Senator.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

P.S. to "I Hate Thanksgiving!"

September 3rd, 1783 was the day The Treaty of Paris was signed, ending the Revoltionary War.
The Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4th, 1776.

Think of it this way:

July 4th was the day of conception. The U.S. was given birth to on September 3rd.

Happy September 3rd!

Bring on the hot dogs...

I Hate Thanksgiving!

Ok...I don't really hate the act of giving thanks...noting all of the things for which I am grateful.

I just loathe the institutionalization of the holidays. Being told when, where and how to emote.

I am equally grateful in May, actually more so, because May represents spring and I am grateful for the end of winter.

I am grateful in January as I celebrate my little daughter's birthday. For that matter I am grateful for her every single day of the year. March 3rd. July 9th. September 15th. Every single day. And December, April and March as those are the month's in which my older daughter, son and wife celebrate their birthdays. I am equally grateful for them too.

I am especially grateful right around February 1st, because, after all of the holidays and the beginning of the year birthdays and sales, the festivities are finally, thankfully over...and I thank God (g-d for my Jewish friends) for that! Oh sorry, February 15th to be exact...the day after Valentine's Day.

The entire reason for these "special" days is to promote commerce. Christmas, Thanksgiving, Mother's Day, Halloween, Valentine's Day. They exist to sell stuff. Now, I understand that, somewhere in history, there was an original reason for selecting one day for whatever reason. Jesus was born on December 25th (well, not really, but whatever...), Thanksgiving was the day we had a meal with the Indians (sorry, Native Americans...oops sorry again, I guess most of us are Native Americans, those of us who were born here that is...), and then made them do the dishes forever after. Columbus Day celebrates Columbus' discovery of The West Indies (which then became The United States, incidentally...you knew that, right...?)

The only real day of celebration is July Fourth...we actually are celebrating a real moment in history...but that has become about hot dogs and fireworks and little flags. I bet there are a lot of school kids that have no idea what July Fourth designates. Those are the same kids that think Wyoming is a country, just like Al Pacino's hapless friend in Dog Day Afternoon, one of the greatest films ever made and for which I am grateful every time I see it.

So...I hate Thanksgiving...probably because my Uncle made it so unbearable when I was a kid...always yelling at somebody and making the 3 hour ride to New Jersey even less justifiable.

But the turkey was always good.

Go Golden Bears!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

24/7/365

What ever happened to the Seasons? We used to be able to guide our yearly activities by the seasonal holidays.

Christmas was in December, Thanksgiving was in November, Halloween was in October, Mother's Day was in May and Valentine's Day was in February.

Now all of the seasons blend into one long shopping trip.

Not to mention sports schedules. Remember when baseball was in the summer and football was in the fall and hockey was in the winter?

None of these seasonal guidelines seem to fit any more.

And the music! Oh Jeez...the friggin' music! I am not a big fan of Christmas music in the first place mind you, but in June?

Please...!

Really, the "holiday" shopping season begins on Labor Day. That's when the Halloween decorations and sales start with a few overtones of Christmas around the edges.

And what with the economy and world situation the way it is, I find it hard to get excited on December 24th, let alone September 24th.

Now don't get me wrong here. I love a holiday just as much as the next guy but if they all run together where's the anticipation? Where's the fun?

I remember when I was a little boy the excitement of Christmas Eve and then Christmas Morning...peaking out of my bedroom door to try to steal a glance at the tree. My parents had to be up and in the living room before I could go in. They lit the tree and positioned themsleves so as to see my little face brighten at the sight of the decorations and...the presents!!

How is that possible if Christmas starts in June?

Why don't we just leave the holidays alone...celebrate them when they actually occur and declare all of the other days of the year as shopping days. Just that. Shop now and celebrate later.

And we wonder why society is falling apart.

"Will that be cash or credit...?

Merry Christmas.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Drug Rats

I was in my wife's doctor's waiting room the other day when the Merck rep and his boss wandered in.

The rep was a jolly sort...overweight but full of glee. His boss was more dour...thinner and much more boring. You could just tell.

The jolly one proceeded to inquire of the receptionist as to whether or not they needed anything.

They didn't.

"What do you mean...you don't want any of my stuff?", came the jolly query.

"No...", they didn't.

The two pharma boys muttered a bit to themselves, sat down to strategize their next appointment and then got up to leave.

I felt no sympathy whatsoever. I felt like asking them how it felt to be a part of the problem rather than a part of the solution. I decided not to bother...not to make a fuss. I wasn't up for it.

They are despicable. Not necessarily those two (always the rationale...not them...never them...!). They are probably really nice guys, although I wouldn't want to be stuck between them on a long flight. The one would put me to sleep, a good thnig, but the other would keep me awake with a combination of too much jolliness and too many love handles spilling over into my seat.

It's the whole lot of them...the whole class of individuals who make their living off of other people's suffering. They don't give a hoot in hell about their product, only that the doctors to whom they sell buy their stuff.

Research for the common good. My ass...!

They are no different then the gun manufacturers or the insurance companies or the investment bankers.

All that matters is profit and the consumer be damned.

Now don't get me wrong. Profit is a good thing. I want it when I work. It makes us do what we do in business. Make a profit.

But at the expense of all other possible morality?

I don't think so. Where's the balance?

Gone...I guess.

Did you hear the one about the Pharma's Daughter...?

She was on the pill but got preggers anyway...it was a placebo. Cost as much as the real thing but wasn't as effective.

Can you say, "Dah Dah...?"

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Clear as a (taco) bell...

Ok...put yourself in my position.

Hungry...cost-conscious...needing value for your hard-t0-find dollar.

You are on the road an spy fast food...a few well worn choices...the least objectionable of which seems to be...Taco Bell.

You are with your honey...a deliberate vegetarian...not a zealot...not a nut...just prefers veggie..."no meat thanks."

You go in. You peruse the "menu"...the sign above the counter with the choices...and their relative prices.

All good so far...right?

You order two bean and rice burritos for yourself and your honey decides to live on the edge...she orders two cheesy potato burritos...and...hold on...a medium drink.

Still good right...?

Wrong...!

The bean and rice burritos were, in fact, bean and rice.

But...wait...the cheesy potato burritos had the promised cheese and potato but also a special gift...CHOPPED MEAT...!?

She doesn't want to complain and soldiers on chewing through the evident grimaces...grateful for your largesse ($9.47)

You, however, are a bit miffed. You didn't get what you ordered (a pet peeve of mine...but more on that at another time...)

So you approach, the offending burritos in hand.

The front line young man is befuddled,

"The menu is there sir."

"I know...it says cheese and potato...not cheese, potato and meat. My honey is a vegetarian...not a zealot or a nut...just a garden variety (pun intended) vegetarian. She doesn't eat meat."

"The menu is there sir."

"I know...but..."

He interrupts...

"The menu is there sir."

You begin to sense the situation.

"May I speak to the manager...?"

Here comes another young man...maybe 10 minutes older than the first.

You repeat the story. He argues with you. You begin to get a tad more agitated. You try to enlighten him to the idea that the menu is not clear. He argues that it is. You, politely, counter that...IT IS NOT!!

Ok...enough of this already.

Here's the point. If a menu in a restaurant has four items listed in a category and they are, 1) Bean and Rice, 2) Cheesy Potato, 3) Bean and Cheese and, 4) Beef and Rice....for 100 points and a trip to Mazatlan...

WHICH IS THE ONE WITH THE MEAT....?!

I rest my case....

Clearly The Decline and Fall of Western Civilization...

"Do you want fries with that...?"

Friday, October 23, 2009

Hold the Mayo...

Please...spare me the drivel about the cops and the nurses and the teachers and the EMTs...

I know...they're all heroes...every day they do personally heroic things on a small scale that have a profound effect on the people with whom they come into contact.

I already know that. I appreciate them. I don't marginalize or denigrate. They are wonderful.
Really.

I'm not talking about them. They are virtually invisible. They matter...but...

Where are the true, real heroes? Where is Ike...?

We are treated to cheap imitations...in politics, in the media, in the movies...on the playing fields especially.

We used to salute our heroes...at every parade, at every lunch counter, in every train station.

We used to hold, in the highest esteem, the men (and sometimes... women) who did heroic things.

Charles Lindbergh (for the flying...not the Nazi thing)

Amelia Earhart (for the flying...not the gay thing)

Dwight Eisenhower (for WWII...not the Republican thing)

Jesse Owens (for the running...and for the Black thing...take that! Adolph...!)

Eleanor Roosevelt (for the social awareness...not the suffering wife thing...Hillary...)

Jonas Salk (for the vaccine...not the Jewish thing)

On and on...heroes...in everyday life...doing publicly extraordinary things...serving as true role models for all of us...young and old.

Now we have corrupt politicians with TV shows, and convicted felons with TV shows and former
cheating athletes with TV shows and blowhards with...TV shows.

I guess it's TV's fault...

I recently visisted with an old friend...a former Marine Sargeant with bars and stars from his several years in Viet Nam. A hero. A man who put his life on the line for me. He enlisted...in the Marine Corps! He fought for me...and you.

"Welcome Home Callie..."

A hero.

A real hero.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Gnat's Entertainment!

We all wonder why the politicians in our midst continue to do the mind-boggling things that they do.

Corruption, sex scandals, wierd behavior...all of it paraded before us 24/7 and we still wonder why they do it..and why there is little or no accountability.

It is a no-brainer mes amis!

It is because, as a nation...as consumers of information...we all have ADD.

We just don't stay with an issue long enough for it to matter (unless, of course it involves O.J. Anna Nicole or Paula Abdul.)

Time and again we are treated to an improriety by a lawmaker or a transgression by a sports figure or an insensitivity by a celebrity. And time and again we tune in for a day or so...maybe a week...and then we're on to the next story. We're like junkies who are fine until the fix wears off and then we're rabid about finding the next one..regardless of the quality of the "drug."

We see no difference between the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq and whether or not Kate and Jon are happy or Paris is having sex (allegedly) or Simon is growling or Charles is evading taxes (allegedly) or Michael has a new TV show about dogs...

Whatever...NEXT!

So the reason why Charles Rangel is, as of this writing, still the Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee is because Nancy Pelosi and the rest of the Democrats in Congress know full well that we won't remember the issue of Rangel's, allegedly, "interesting" financial dealings in November 2010.

We will be too absorbed with whatever new pop-culture scandal has graced our TVs or PCs...whether on Fox or ABC or PBS...or The Enquirer or The Times or The Post. It won't matter the medium, respected and legitimate or not... it will only matter the message.

If it is a political message come next November then it will matter... then...because it sure as hell doesn't matter now. If it involves our, so-called "heroes" (another blog at another time...another shame...) then we'll be focused on that...not anything that may really effect us as a culture.

Business as usual...for a population who could care less.

Shame on all of us!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

What's in a Name...Part II?

Imagine if, all of a sudden, all at once, everything in your world was new.



Not your shoes or your spouse or your job. Not your car or your house. Just the familiar old things to which, over a lifetime, you have become accustomed.



For example:



The United States of Avocado.



John Fennel and Paul Eisenstadt of the Beatles.



Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Onion.



Onion, Bloody Onion.



Onion School.



Super Bowl Onion.



Get my drift?



The other day I was driving into New York City. It was a beautiful day. A few clouds and bright sun. Warm with a gentle breeze. UN Week. Lovely. As I approached from the Bruckner Expressway I saw a disturbing sight: "The RFK Bridge" Huh?



Where did The Triboro go? Oh...there is no Triboro Bridge anymore? Now it's "The RFK?" The Robert Francis Kennedy Bridge?



NO...IT'S NOT!!!!



It's the GD Triboro and I don't care who knows it! I am one of millions of New Yorkers, past and present, who grew up and have lived happily (never mind the ever increasing tolls..) with the Triboro (never mind "Part II"...I always take the Willis Avenue Bridge to avoid the ever increasing tolls...)



I don't want to call it The RFK. I want to call it The Triboro...and will, defiantly, continue to do so. And while I'm at it...it's Candlestick Park and Shea Stadium and The West Side Highway and ESSO, damnit...! And thank God Prince came back to Earth...I never could (you couldn't either...who are you kidding?) pronouce his symbol...



They took back Cape Canaveral after another Kennedy renaming...I'm sure Logan Airport in Boston is doomed to become Teddy Airport...



But let's rally around the flag boys...let's refuse to call it "The RFK."...let's hold the line...let's hold on to the dwindling past and stick with the good ol' Triboro... Come on...repeat after me...in unison..."The Triboro Bridge...The Triboro Bridge...THE TRIBORO BRIDGE!!!"



Thank you.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

You're a...!

What is it with politicians named Joe?


They can't seem to keep their mouths shut.


Joe McCarthy


Joe Biden


Joe Wilson


Joe The Plumber (just kidding...although I thought he ran a quite effective third party campaign against McCain...)

Now, I happen to love Joe Biden ( he was actually one of my choices for President in '08) but he does have a knack for talking too much at the wrong time.

And we all know what havoc Senator McCarthy wreaked during the go-go fifties. Even my pediatrician was accused when I was a kid.

But what the hell is up with Congressman Wilson? What ever happened to civil discourse?
What happened to the concept of acting in a gentlemanly manner?

These guys should be ashamed! It's fine, as a matter of fact, down right American to dissent and to criticize. We would be China if we didn't.

But how about some manners boys. Didn't your mama learn ya better'n that?

No kidding...we elect these idiots to high office (no Clinton jokes please...) and then we are surprised at their behavior. Sex scandals, embezzlement, corruption...and now manners.

What's next? Failure to signal a turn? Putting the fork on the right? Passing audible gas in the elevator and not blaming the little old lady next to you?

What?

Anyway...back on topic...can't we please play nice (ly...oh Mr. Safire...we do miss you so...)

Why does everything always have to descend into the basest of the base...? We were all taught, growing up, to be polite and to say please and thank you and "May I" (not "can I"...yes you are able to...but do you have permission...? Spare me...)

Where along the timeline of our lives do we lose the ability to be civil and deferential...even when we are frustrated and don't agree.

Joe, my boy, you should be ashamed...

Now write on the board 100 times...

"I will not disrespect the President. I will not disrespect the President"

Enjoy your fifteen minutes you ...#$%^&*!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Pull Over!!

I don't know about you but one thing that just frosts my derriere is being passed by a policeman on the highway.

I'm going the speed limit (usually)...he's, obviously, not.

What gives? And don't tell me he's rushing to get a doughnut while it's warm.

He's speeding because he can. "I'm a cop and you're not. Nah nah nah nah nah...!"

Ok...if he's going to the scene of a crime or going to help someone...it's understandable. Rock on officer...pedal to the metal...I'm all over it.

But just because his Crown Vic is set up to do 120 and he's got flashing lights and a shotgun and the power to pull me over for no apparent reason shouldn't give him the privilege of driving as fast as he wants and as fast as we would if we could. ("Cop didn't see it...I didn't do it - George Carlin")

Can you say "Citizen's Arrest?" Hah!!

Just not fair...

And while I'm at it...another thing that is irritating is the fact that construction zones have policemen guarding them. What the hell is that about? They put up an orange sign the size of your house. They put orange barrels up a mile away. They have flashing yellow lights and Jersey barriers. Why in God's name do they have to have a cop? He's often not doing anything useful. He's chatting with the workers (one reason why the projects take two or three light years to complete) or he's in his car on the phone or the computer or drinking coffee.

Society complains that there are not enough police to patrol neighborhoods or prevent crime.

Why then, are these highly trained, expensive and much needed and valuable public servants sitting in expensive cruisers at construction sites?

If it's to have a "presence" then just put an older cruiser there with the lights flashing and a dummy in the front seat. (and no, I am not suggesting, through some funny turn of a phrase, that cops are dummies. I have a lot of respect for the police. I really meant a dummy as in a mannequin...really.)

Nothing makes a driver slow down and obey the traffic laws more effectively than seeing a police car on the side of the road in front of them. Nothing.

Well almost nothing. Possibly the sight of a police car in the rear view mirror.

...coming up on their tail at 90mph lights a-flashing...

...on a doughnut run.

Jeez...!

Friday, August 14, 2009

What the...?

What is the first rule of business...?



Make a profit.



So why are we surprised about the health care "debate?"



The insurance companies, the hospitals, the doctors and the pharmaceutical companies all have one thing in common...to make a profit. Oh and add in the funeral parlors and the cemetaries.



None of the above would exist if we were healthy...except the funeral parlors and the cemetaries of course.

So why the hubbub...?

Are we that stupid as a population? Do we not see the truth even when it hits us in the face?

MONEY!!!!

Not health care. Not choice of doctors or hospitals. Not choice of drugs.

A twist on James Carville's famous line...."It's the MONEY stupid...!"

And forget about the philosophical conversation about right vs. privilege.

It is not about cogent arguments postulated in an environment of sane discourse among equal yet opposing intellects.

It's about profit.

Deep Throat: "Follow the Money..."

Folk Song: "When will we ever learn...when will we ever learn...?"

Big Pharma and Big Hospital and Big Doctor care about one thing...maximizing profit...and as very good businessmen (women...?) they are kicking our collective asses...

Everything about health care costs a small fortune from aspirin to office visits to therapies of all kind. And that's how the business infrastructure likes it. That's profit...that's capitalism...that's free enterprise. That's The American Way (cue Coulter, Hannity and Limberger.)

Forget about treatments that actually work or preventive care or non-pharmaceutical remedies.

That's all voodoo...not sanctioned by the FDA or the Surgeon General. Never mind that it's all worked for hundreds if not thousands of years with more that half of the world's population.
(we love Chinese food...can't do without a late night egg roll..but Chinese medicine? VOODOO!!
"I'll have the voo doo pork with extra pancakes please...)

So...

There you go.

It's about money...as if you didn't know that.

Oh and about guns...don't forget the 2nd Amendment...

That does dovetail though doesn't it?

After all where do you go (unless you're in the Mafia) when you get shot?

To a doctor at a hospital where they put you on drugs. But not your own marijuana for the pain...

no...

Never that...

Marijuana is addicting...unlike...say...VICODIN!!!!!

And as I like to say...

Have a nice day.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Wisdom

The meaning of the name Sonia is "wisdom."

Sonia Sotomayor is poised to be the first Hispanic on the Supreme Court.

Her name means "wisdom."

Just exactly right for the highest court in the land.

And she's a woman to boot. Good for us as a country and a culture.

And it's about time that the men in government have an opportunity to let those who have been underrepresented have a voice.

It is amazing how the pontificators in and out of Congress have attempted to malign Sotomayor.
Maybe she's not perfect and maybe she has said some things she might not have and maybe some of her judicial decisions can be argued with.

But for the past 100 billion years or so white men have run things and have done a fairly poor job of it. War, pollution, genocide, slavery, robbery...you name it and the white men are probably responsible for most of it (I know, Aileen Wuornos and Queen Mary I...and Leona Helmsley and Glenn Close's character in "Fatal Attraction"...)

But, really, the boys are afraid that the little brown girl will take away their toys and make them clean up their rooms.

Just grow up fellas. She'll be fine. She'll be cool. She'll, maybe, turn a few things around in this country that may, in the long run, save the Republic and your fat asses...too much Conservative shenanigans and the natives might become restless (remember the French Revolution and the Russian Revolution and the American Revolution and the former USSR and Lech Walesa and Romania and...I guess not...) and chain you all to an oar.

But then crew is the sport of the privileged class so the bullies in Washington might be at home...

"Stroke...!"

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Your Call is Very Important to Us...

No...

...it's not.

What is important, apparently, is saving money by automating everything.

I will go on record here and now as being one who absolutely hates the telephone response systems that so many corporations and government agencies employ to "streamline" their operations.

SCREW YOU!!!

First you dial the number. Then you have to listen to some aggravating and incredibly annoying voice tell you that you have choices:

"If you want sales, press one"
"If you want tech support, press two"
"If you know your party's extension press it now or for a company directory press three (an entirely different set of annoyances...)
"If you want to commit suicide press the trigger...NOW!!!"

And if you think you are too cool and you have outwitted the computer on the other end of the phone you press "O" and you think you'll get an operator...a real human...in Bangladesh or Mumbai or Bakersfield...

But NOOOO!!

You get:

"You have made an invalid choice...if you want sales press one"...etc., ad nauseum!

I want to talk to a person!

I have an issue...nay, a problem...and I am already irritated with my grievance or question and by the time I get Tiffany or Todd or Ahmed...I AM REALLY PISSED OFF NOW!!!!!!!!

Please God...revert to the good old days. Staff your stupid company or agency with real people, however inept they inevitably are. Real people in real locations like Sioux Falls or Omaha or Lubbock. Well, maybe not Lubbock...the accent is too reminiscient of Ol' What's His Name...the former Decider in Chief...

I don't really care where they are or ultimately what they know which is usually nothing but the script in front of them requiring you to ask for a supervisor named Sherry or Richard.

Then maybe you get satisfaction...or not...but at least you could have the conversation with another human being...

...even if it's being monitored for "quality assurance purposes..."

My ASS...!

Or as Tony Soprano said to Dr, Melfi, "If my call is so important to you why don't you pick up the F***in' phone...!"

Thank you for listening.

Now press six to return to the main menu.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

I Confess, Part II!!

...and now Governor Sanford...

Christmas in (almost) July...

Thank you...

Thursday, June 18, 2009

I Confess!!

I confess...I am in love...

...with Washington, D.C.

Well, not actually the city itself but its' noble (no bull...) inhabitants.

WHAT A BUNCH OF LYING A-HOLES!

Are you kidding me?

And why is it always the ones who pontificate so loudly who do EXACTLY the thing that they rant about...and then use the formula apology when caught; "My behavior was reprehensible...blah, blah, blah...I love my wife (yeah, right)...I love my kids (not so sure about the 'brown one') ?"

Don't do drugs!...Congressman So-and-So gets caught in a DEA sting.

Don't patronize hookers!...Senator What's-his-Name gets caught with his pants down...literally.

Gays are BAD!!...Congressman Whoseit...is...GAY!

On and on and on and almost never women mind you...almost always the men...the bellicose, hypocritical, tyrannical blowhards to whom we give so damned much power (we elect them remember...our choice you know...) who seem to live in a "Do as I say, not as I do" world. The most the women get caught doing is hiring illegal nannies. At least they are doing something about unemployment as they actually care for their children...well they're not really doing the caring themselves...but, you know what I mean.

I just LOVE the fact that Senator Nelson had an affair. And it is characterized as having been with a good friend's wife. Hmmmmmm....how good?

He, apparently, has resigned his "leadership" post, whatever that is. He has called upon others to resign in the past, yet he will most assuredly, try to hold on to his seat.

And well he should...we don't care about morality...we don't care about accountability...we don't care about responsibility...the 24 hour news cycle will be overtaken by the next big deal...what's that you say...there's war in Iraq and Afghanistan...the economy is on life support...the Earth is dying...what...Paris Hilton said what...?

We only care about who won American Idol, or the Super Bowl or The U.S. Open, or Powerball.

We don't care that we are governed by a bunch of scumbags who took the Hypocritic Oath of Office when they arrived in The Nation's Capitol.

Well, not all of them are scumbags.

Some are patriots.

Oliver North. John Poindexter. Bud McFarlane. Dan Rostenkowski. Wilbur Mills. Tom Foley. Larry Craig. "Scooter" (what a cute little sobriquet...) Libby. David Vitter. John Edwards.

Can't you just see a July 4th parade with all of those guys marching with a banner? What would it say? "USA all the Way!!" (United Scumbags of America...?)

"Oh Say Can You See...?"

Yup...I can see.

Have a nice day.

Friday, June 12, 2009

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to The Election

Prediction:

Sarah Palin wins the presidency in 2012.

Why does she win you ask, awakened from your Cannes induced slumber?

Because we can't stop talking about her. It's like the proverbial train wreck...you want to look away but can't stop looking either.

The woman is an icon of the hard far right wing of the nearly defunct Republican Party.

I say nearly defunct because it is not totally defunct...yet.

We keep it alive by actually engaging with it about issues of governance...about which it has demonstrated very little aptitude.

If Sarah Palin wants to rant about David Letterman...let her. When a child carries on about the deprivation of a toy or too few cookies we don't engage...we adults ignore. Soon the brat chills and we get back to the business at hand...whatever that is...ironing, cooking, kissing, arguing, taking out the trash...whatever.

Just ignore the woman and maybe she'll go away....maybe.

But NOOOO...we can't do that...she's too powerful...she's a governor...she's a hockey mom...she's a moose lover and a Todd lover and an advocate for disabled kids and a supporter of the troops...

Wait a minute...

Maybe she ain't so bad after all...

Maybe Letterman is a horse's arse...

Maybe the Republicans are right...

Maybe...

NAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHH!!

Prediction #2:

Sarah Palin assumes the presidency on January 20, 2013.

Can you say "Ex-Pat...?"

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Hold the Anchovies...

So here's a question for ya...if our prisons aren't good enough to house prisoners from Guantanamo then...are they good enough to house the murderers, rapists and former corporate CEOs in them now?

We go on and on about the unconcionable way in which we have incarcerated hundreds of, so-called, "enemy combatants" and when the Administration decides to, finally, close the prison, we don't want to bring the prisoners here.

Their home countries don't want them and we don't think our prison system is robust enough to do the job.

Senator Nimby and Congressman Vascillator have whined and now President Obama has granted their wish...but...now, they really don't want the favor...!

You have got to be kidding me...

But the situation really lacks the kind of humor Congress usually deserves. We seem to be governed by a bunch of spineless political and social climbers concerned with only one thing...power and money and being reelected (ok, three things.)

No courage there...no heroes where, once, that's all we had...Revere, Paine, Hawthorne, Henry, Washington, Jefferson, Franklin...DC is simply a place where gasbags pontificate and deliver almost nothing.

Close Guantanamo...uphold the rule of law...renounce torture...

or...as Spike Lee, famously, said...

"Do the Right Thing."

Or, just get a slice at Sal's Famous and shut up...!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Keeping Abreast of the Situation

Let's talk cleavage.

Not your garden variety, everyday, ordinary cleavage. Let's talk the gold standard.

The quality of cleavage in Cannes is astounding. Young, old, fat, thin, black, white, French, German, Spanish, American...it is the United Nations of cleavage here.

And the beautiful 80° weather supports a full on presentation of goods. This is NOT a film festival...this is a cleavage fesitval!

The 62nd annual Cannes Cleavage Festival with entries from all over the world. Who will get the Palm Door...?

Well, the answer to that question is...only someone with a boatload (the yachts are obscene...but would not be so characterized if I had one...) of disposable income at their disposal...

Princes in their Mercedes motorcades, playboys in their Ferraris, retired CEOs in their huge Audi SUVs...those are the guys with access to the cleavage. They paid (or inherited...or stole...) their dues and so now they get to promenade in Le Croisette with a pair on each arm... actually not on each arm because the amount of silicone keeps our friends aloft even without the benefit of a gentle Mediterranean breeze.

So...come one, come all (no pun intended.)

Visit Cannes...

But beware...it is not for the faint of heart. The scenery is blinding.

And we ain't talkin' palm trees here Pal...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

It's a Shoe In...

What is it with women's shoes?

Please, will someone tell me?

Here in beautiful Cannes there is an abundance of glamour, maybe even too much. Crowds of people waiting to see Leonardo or Quentin or Emile. Jugglers, mimes, accordionists, photographers, princes and giggolos.

And marginally attractive women in ridiculous shoes.

Now, I'm not stuffy nor prudish and I think I have a reasonable grasp of fashion...I recently threw out my sky blue leisure suit with complimentary Paisley shirt and white shoes...so there! But I have no clue as to the reason why seemingly intelligent (hmmm...a theme emerges...) women would get into these monstrous contraptions.

First, they do not really accentuate the calf...maybe a little and more so with a subtle heel of say, two to three inches...and the woman wearing them walks in such an awkward way so as to look clownish at best.

The heels are microscopic and the amount of sole that makes contact with Mother Earth is about the size of a special edition postage stamp memorializing Iwo Jima.

Is is to make the women taller? Is it to make them seem more "in the know?" Is it to make a statement of hipness and/or affluence?

God knows...but it seems absurd to me. After a night in these things the ball of the foot has got to hurt...the calf has got to burn and the exhaustion from having to try to stay aloft for hours on end must be akin to "enhanced interrogation" at the Hotel Guantanamo...

I propose we outlaw shoes that resemble skateboard jumps and replace them with flats or at least shoes with real heels and real soles.

Let's give the gals a break. Let's "man up" and collectively say that we like our women on solid ground, comfortable and secure.

I challenge any man or shoe designer to spend a night in these shoes.

There would be an instantaneous change of attitude and Northern Italy would disappear.

Whoops...check the above...bring on the shoes...bring on the heels...bring on the 60° angles...

We can't lose Northern Italy...we must preserve civilization.

Forget everything I said.

The shoes are beautiful and no, your ass doesn't look big in that...is that a dress or a shirt?...uh oh...sorry (don't get me started...)...

Move over Fido...you've got company tonight...SHOO!!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Sarah Palin for President!

Let me say, right off, that I don’t like Sarah Palin. Let me also say that I don’t know her personally. I saw her from the booth at the Republican National Convention in St. Paul last summer but that’s as close as I’ve been. I would probably amend my feelings if I actually met her because, after all, she is rather pretty.

Now, having said all of that, I think we should promote her for the presidency in 2012. With, maybe Rush Limbaugh as VP. Or Arlen Specter as a surprise bi-partisan choice.

Sarah Palin stands for everything that the right wing of the Republican Party is all about.

Gun rights. Life. Abstinence. Small government. Individual rights. Being white.

Her daughter recently took a “job” as the spokesperson for an anti-teen-pregnancy (emphasis on the “anti-teen” part) outfit. A perfect fit.

But back to her mother for a minute. The critics are weighing in on Barack Obama’s performance after his first 100 days. He’s gotten mixed reviews. Some think he’s a fraud and others think he is The Messiah. I’m on the fence.

But the absolutely best, almost bulletproof, slam dunk way to get him reelected in 2012 is to put someone up on the Republican ticket like Gov. Palin.

She has a base and name recognition. She has already been tested by the fire of a presidential contest. She has the clothes.

She also represents a philosophy that is dying. The philosophy of exclusion, ignorance and greed.

Now, to be totally clear, there are some outstanding Republicans in our midst. Orrin Hatch is great and so are Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe. And bright minds like William Kristol and David Brooks continue to make us stop and think.

But the overarching dogma screeched by Hannity, Limbaugh and Steele (sounds like a personal injury law firm…”The next time you’re in an accident call the specialists at Hannity, Limbaugh and Steele…they get you MONEY!!”) is negative and self-destructive.

The American people have rejected the dirty politics of Karl Rove (The “K” is what makes the difference…if it were a “C” we’d feel better) and have, instead, endorsed the open, ethical and intelligent personality of the Obama administration. They may be stumbling but who wouldn’t given the unbelievable mess they inherited from…the Republicans!

So Palin / Limbaugh in ’12! That is the best way to reelect President Obama. And think of the moose that will be saved. And the squirrels. And the minks.

The mind boggles…

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Endurance

Now I don't want to seem hostile or unsympathetic. I am a civil libertarian at heart and certainly believe in the individual's right to self-expression. Furthermore I think that the government spends too much time telling me what to do and how to do it...in and out of the bedroom.

But I have to draw the line.

It is spring now and soon it will, hopefully, be summer (unless we all perish from either the flu, shame at wearing those silly masks or self-induced madness at adopting the OCD behavior of incessant hand washing. What if I meet the Pope...is it bad form not to kiss his ring...?)

With the lovely months comes the inevitable motorcycle.

"Motorcycles are Everywhere" goes the bumper sticker. Whoopie!!

And that's the problem. Not the occasional Honda or Kawasaki or the trendy Vespa.

No.

The Harley Davidson. The Harley. The Chopper. The Hog.

Who declared that this motorcycle has to sound like the Third Armored Division on manoeuvers?

Damn they can be loud.

To be fair (I don't really feel like being fair, but in the interest of fairness I'll pretend...), not all Harleys are loud. Only some of them.

And those are LOUD!!

Too loud if you ask me (which you didn't but this is my blog...so get your own.)

I'm sitting at a table at an outside cafe enjoying the company I am keeping. Interesting conversation. Good tea. Gentle breeze. Love is in the air.

And then...!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here they come...not one, although it is sometimes only one that seems like many...but five or ten or twenty.

Road Trip!! Rally!! Yippee! Yahoo!! SHUT UP!!

One day I'm going to drive down the road with a loud speaker system strapped to my car and blast Wagner (not the Mayor silly...the composer...) at 100 decibels...at 2am...for an hour...!

Take that you leather wearing, Fu Manchu mustache sporting, chain-driven wallet owning, insurance salesmen Harley riders...and your large-breasted, leather vest only wearing, iPod listening sissy bar holding-on-to babes...!

And all of you Hells Angels...!

What noise...?

Who said anything about noise?

Have a nice day...

Friday, May 1, 2009

I am Curious...Hello?

I was wondering, what ever happened to:

Hurricane Katrina victims.
Charlie Rangel's real estate issues.
Ed McMahon's real estate issues.
George W. Bush's Air National Guard record.
Dan Rather.
Elliot Spitzer.
Elliot Gould.
George Elliot.
Leona Helmsley's dog.
Burt Reynolds.
Debbie Reynolds.
Reynolds Aluminum.
Halliburton.
Ahmed Chalabi.
Cher.
John Poindexter.
Oliver North.
Oliver Stone.
Oliver!
Tom Carvel.
Alberto Gonzales.
Elian Gonzales.
Speedy Gonzales.
Fuller Brush.
The submarines that came in cereal boxes that you put baking soda in and they did something cool (I don't remember what, exactly...)

Just wondering...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Torture

Torture:

"The act of inflicting excruciating pain, as punishment or revenge, as a means of getting a confession or information, or for sheer cruelty."
(Random House Dictionary)

I'm sorry, but I think it's wrong. Under any circumstances for whatever reason.

I know many will argue that we have tortured in the recent past as a way to prevent another 9-11.

But what happened to the moral argument that we once had the upper hand in?

We used to be the good guys. We promoted democracy and freedom and humanitarianism. We stood for something different.

Now, I am not so naive as to assume that over our history we have not engaged in reprehensible acts of cruelty and deceit. Of course we have. We have done everything under the umbrella of preserving our freedom and protecting our way of life.

Sure, Al Qaeda wants to obliterate us. Sure we have enemies all over the place and sure, we are at risk.

But what exactly are we at risk of? Losing our lifestyle? Losing our vaunted liberties under our sacred Constitution? Losing our lives at the hands of those we deem the "bad guys?"

I submit that by resorting to the use of torture and condoning the acts of those who mete it out, we are losing everything we have ever believed in. We are losing our morality. We are become those we fight against.

We claim to believe in the rights of man. We claim to believe in the beauty of nature and the creation itself.

Yet we have collectively decided to allow the most heinous acts to be carried out in our name with the handy justification that, by doing so, we will be safe.

Certainly safe in the short term...but never safe from the slippery slope we are stepping on. It will only be a matter of time before we are a completely amoral society bereft of everything that made us proud as a people.

We will only be safe if we set the example of goodness over evil and of love over hate. We will only be safe if we hold on to our principles in the face of all odds no matter how steep.

I'm sure the bright minds in government and academia can come up with a better way to get information from someone without torture.

But do we want to try...?

And those who sanctioned and used torture as a means to an end should not be allowed to get away with, literally, murder. They should be held accountable. They should be investigated and if, guilty, jailed. If not, they will be exonerated in a court of law...not "pardoned" in the Oval Office.

President Obama has stated that we will not use torture. But to abandon the investigation of those who may have committed crimes is to sanction the behavior and to say that it was okay.

It was not okay.

We are not okay.

Ok?

(One definition of "okay" is that it comes from the French and originally was "aux quais", which means "to the dock"...which was where slaves were put before being shipped out to the U.S....thought you'd like to know)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Endless Summers

Surprise, surprise...!

Larry Summers was paid handsomely for his expertise (read: access) by Wall Street before he came to Washington on his latest go around.

Who's kidding who? These guys are just very good at the game. They all know how to play and we're left holding the, increasingly empty, bag.

I watched "Rob Roy" with Liam Neeson last night (couldn't help think of his grief about Natasha Richardson, poor guy...I saw him on Broadway a few years back with his kids...just a regular dad walking with his children...tragic how that's all changed now...makes you think about priorities...)

He was ripped off by his local Marquis and almost killed by a hired gun (well, foil but don't quibble) after his house was burned and his wife (Jessica Lange) was raped. The Marquis was corrupt, the henchman was cruel and the peasants were left to toil endlessly in the mire of Scotland while the royalty drank champagne and ate pate...

Doesn't sound like much has changed. We watch as the treasury (sic) is depleted on behalf of millionaires who don't seem to know what the words "fairness" and "enough" mean.

Unemployment is up. People are being laid off left and right. Homes are being foreclosed upon. Factories are closing. People are scared and the Lords in Washington and on Wall Street are watching and laughing.

They don't give a damn. They have theirs. They have their multi-thousand/million dollar salaries and their health coverage. They have their chauffered Town Cars and their summer homes. Their kids are in the better schools and there is never a day that they worry about, really, anything except maybe being reelected or not being fired so they can continue the rape.

Poor Rick Wagoner...my ass.

Larry Summers is a millionaire with a key to the revolving door.

Nothing's changed...and if Saint Barry doesn't get his act together he'll be one term and we'll all be eating Moose and playing hockey.

Actually the moose thing might be good...after all, you can only eat so much cat food (which does not taste like chicken) before you run out of lives...

Bring on '12...bring on "Change We Can Believe In..."

Friday, April 3, 2009

Technically Speaking

Ok, so the Feds allegedly withheld evidence in the Ted Stevens case.

I, for one, am neither surprised nor scandalized.

Ted Stevens seems to represent everything that is wrong with Washington. Entrenched elected officials in for (practically) life. Pork Barrell politics exemplified by his "Bridge to Nowhere." Tone deafness to the realities of the workingman. Arrogance. Greed. Bad fashion sense.

Everything.

Good riddance.

But then, you say, that he was railroaded. Overzealous prosecutors "overreaching." The letter of the law. A glorified, sainted career ruined at the hands of jealous partisans. Oh, the shame! There goes The Union!

Baloney (Bologna..? Fried with peas...don't you just love how the pieces of meat curl up into little cups...little satellite dishes of flavor...?)

There goes the avarice of another politician who flew just a tad too close to the sun.

Sure, if it's true, the prosecutors erred (just like Alberto Gonzales erred in his dealings with those other prosecutors...) and they should resign and or be prosecuted themselves.

They should have, a) known better b), been smarter or ,c) known better.

But they didn't and now, on a technicality, the Prince of Pork, the Earl of Earmarks, the Alleged King of Corruption (alliteration...get over it ) is getting off.

True, he's out of office and one could wax philosophic about the what ifs... let's not, shall we.

But is the lesson learned?

No.

Soon enough, we'll have another clown paraded before us in handcuffs doing the Gucci Perp Walk and he, too, will get off...on some other technicality.

"Round and round the Mulberry bush, the Monkey chased the Weasel. The Monkey said it was all in fun.

Down goes...the Republic!"

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

To Infinity...and Beyond!

Here's what I don't get.

We (the Royal "we") pay CEOs billions of dollars annually to lead our multi-national corporations into profitability and health. We produce thousands of worthwhile products and services and provide employment for millions of hard working people around the globe.

But we can't seem to figure out the relationship between the finite resource of oil and the finite resources of the planet, such as clean air and water.

I suppose the reason is simple. Entrenched corruption, greed and short term priorities. The politicians are all in the pockets of the huge corporations and the huge corporations seem only to be concerned with huge profits, both for their upper level manangement but also for the stockholders.

Got it. Short term priorities. What seems to be a complete lack of concern for long term consequences.

And the population at large doesn't seem to have the stones to confront the problem and change the system from one of million dollar access to one of true democracy...where everyone is, in fact, equal...not more or less equal than his/her neighbor.

Ok...so we'll never change. Fine.

Ok...so there is corruption across the political spectrum (Ted Stevens dodged a big bullet...but at least he's no longer in Washington...maybe...)

Ok...profits and golden parachutes and bonuses are the motivation du jour in the executive suite.

Good. Let it all continue status quo...ante or otherwise.

But why in God's good name don't the, so-called, "Masters of the Universe" just make and sell good stuff.

The country mobilized in a heartbeat after Pearl Harbor and began making products (all of us, men, women and even children...) for the war effort. We sacrficed as a country...as a world...as a global community...on behalf of saving ourselves from the great threat of the day...the Nazis.

Well, the Nazis of today are represented in a different way...they are a combination of Al Qaeda, our "friends" in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan and the almost irreversible decline of our natural environment.

Why don't the big corporations like ExxonMobil, GM, United Technologies, et al, simply retool to produce products that will help the planet.

Keep your bonuses. Make your Gazillion dollar profits. Continue to curry favor on K street. Keep taking money, under the table, from the Treasury. Keep on keepin' on. Don't change a damned thing.

Who cares? But just make stuff that will help rather than hinder.

If we all concentrated on manufacturing products that relied on alternative and sustainable fuels we would not only eliminate our need/dependency on foreign oil but we would, simultaneously, clean up the planet and make it inhabitable for many generations to come. Wouldn't it be fun to tell the Saudis to shove it the next time OPEC decides to cut production and we are forced to pay $5.oo/gallon?

Long term, multi-generational, visionary motivation. Your great-grandchildren's great-grandchildren. Not just you and your immediate needs.

But I suppose that's too much to ask of our great leaders, in and out of Washington.

My 12 year old knows that you can't sell what you don't have. You have to find something new to put in your lemondade stand if you run out of lemonade.
Apple juice...peach juice..Kool Aid.

But maybe we should save the Kool Aid until we really need it...

Jim Jones...we hardly knew ye!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Finders Keepers

Here's what I fail to fully comprehend:

Why would anybody pay good money for something they can get for less, or better, for free?

So... the other day I'm driving along with my daughter and we spy a bathtub on the side of the road. But not any ordinary bathtub. Not the one cut in half on its' end with the Virgin Mary in it.
Not the one full of Marigolds.

No the 4' x 6' kind that has 6 jets, a motor, gold fittings and looks almost new in a soothing coral finish. That kind.

I drive on by and tell my daughter that, if it's still there when I pass by again after dropping her off at her mother's, I'll stop and investigate.

Which is what I did. It was still there. Free...take it away. The sign said so.

So I was standing there thinking about how I was going to get it home when a guy drove up and asked me if I was going to take it. I said I was trying to figure that out. He said that if I didn't want it he'd take it but then offered to help me load it onto my truck. Then the homeowner came out and he got involved.

The three of us hoisted it up on top of my Ford Explorer (damn the paint...full speed ahead!) and I strapped 'er down. On top you ask? The inside was too full of other stuff...

I arrived home and my beautiful wife was not surprised.

"Another hot tub...?"

"No...a Jacuzzi tub"

You see, last year we found a 6 foot square hot tub with a cedar surround, again on the side of the road. The kind you put in the yard and have a bunch of friends over in February and sit in and then roll around in the snow...well, not us exactly, but lunatics who do that sort of thing (Bob...!)

My neighbors helped us take it down from the top of my truck (did I say "damn the paint" already...?)

Now it's in the yard and also on Craigslist and I'll eventually sell it and have the money to get what I really want...

Whatever that is...

You see I tend to find what I need. Clothing, tools, inversion tables (brand new on a street corner in New York valued at $350.00), a working kiln, a 14' canoe...!

So, again I ask...why pay retail...or even wholesale?

Just visualize it...and it will come.

Now, how about $1,000,000.00...or a cure for cancer...or world peace...or whirled peas...?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Green (with Envy) Party

Bulletin from the "Cut to The Chase", "Tell it Like it is" Department of Human Relationship Affairs:

I'm so jealous I could spit!

Well, not me personally (ok, maybe just a little bit...), but me collectively. The Royal Me. Us as a people, as a culture, as a way of life. We're just jealous of these guys and their millions..."where's mine" we say.

I, personally, don't care if Ed Liddy or John Thain or whomsoever made money during the Credit Default Swap/Derivative Mortgage Bubble (CDSDMB) That's now, and always has been, the American Way. Better mousetrap and all...

I don't care if they have gold plated faucets and trash cans and airplanes.

I don't care if they have 7 houses, all on the same street, one for everyday of the week (and all of their mistresses...)

What I do care about, however, is the fact that they are asking for billions of dollars in help from the government (you and me, if you had forgotten...) to keep their companies solvent because their companies are "too big to fail."

Imagine going to a friend, after you have made a huge, costly mistake in your business, and asking them for financial help.

"Fred. It's Milt. I messed up at work and I need $1,000 to bail me out of a jam."

"What happened?"

"I bought a machine that only worked for a few days and now it doesn't work at all. I'm flat broke and if I don't replace it I'll go bust and my four workers will be homeless and Millie's Diner won't be able to count on our breakfast money so she'll be in trouble too."

"I see...well, in that case, where shall I mail the check? Pay me back when you can. Good luck"

"Gee, Fred, you're the best...thanks"

Next day at the supermarket:

"Hey Milt...how's it goin'? Did you get the check?"

"Yeah Fred...thanks!"

"Say, what are the caviar, champagne, pate and truffles in your carriage for."

"Oh, we're having a party at work to celebrate your check. It only cost $950.00"

"Uh, I see..."

"Thanks again Fred...see ya soon!"

(Fred leaves the store mulling over the 2nd Amendment.)

WHAT THE F----- IS GOING ON?!

The mere fact that Paulson and now Geithner are members of the Wall Street club (alumni they call 'em...) shouldn't be any cause for concern. And Vegas is running good odds on the "Larry Summers will Really Answer a Question Sweepstakes."

I'm sure that the men and women on Wall Street are not getting a sweetheart deal from their old cronies. Nah...not these guys.

No...what I do care about is the notion that these "Masters of the Universe" made bad business decisions and now we're being caused to pay for them and they could care less.

Giving back their bounses my ass...how about giving back the economy and the jobs and the memories and the retirement funds and the mental health of the nation.

How about that for a plan.

How about we fire all of these clowns and start over...put an un-employed steelworker at Labor. Put an out of work cashier at Commerce. Put a frightened housewife at Treasury. Put a laid off financial analyst in full battle gear in Afghanistan.

These are people (except maybe the analyst...emphasis on "anal"...sorry, I know, a bit sophomoric, but I couldn't help myself) who really understand working within a budget and saving for a rainy day and accepting responsibility for bad choices.

Enough! (Remember Marie Antionette anyone...?)

But then again, without the Washington/Wall Street Circus, we'd have nothing to bitch about...except the Red Sox/Yankees rivalry...and A-Rod...and Britney Spears and The Jonas Brothers and Miley Cyrus and Bachelor and...

Monday, March 16, 2009

Dixie Cups R Us

OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!

I am so unbelievably and completely, totally frustrated...and angry.

And I know that I am not alone!!

I called my bank today to verify a payment.

"If you want Joe...press one"

"If you want Pradesh...press two"

"If you want Ahmed...press three"

"If you want to committ suicide press a GUN TO YOUR HEAD...!!!"

I understand call centers. I have no problem with them. They save money and in some cases, even save time (but usually not...)

I support bringing emerging economies in line with ours (it will soon be the other way around but let's stay on topic, please...)

I understand and really love technology when applied to everyday life in a way that streamlines activities and gives me more time to worry about the lack of money in my bank account...

...oh yeah, that was the reason for my call today...remember...to verify a payment.

But my question could not be answered by the 75 choices I had in the electronic voice tree that was at my fingertip disposal (emphasis on disposal...)

I needed a human. I didn't care who...a guy in Kuala Lumpur...a gal in Amsterdam...a dude in Santa Monica...I couldn't have cared less...

...until I became entangled in "The Bank of America Automated Time Saving, Depositor Friendly, Drive You Nuts, Electronic Phone Tree"

It took me FOUR separate calls, each of about 5 minutes, to finally get a lovely woman in New Delhi, who told me what I needed to know.

Then I made the mistake of trying to communicate my aggravation to her. She took it personally and it took me almost another 20 minutes to assure her that my problem was not with her but with the system. By the tone of her voice I'm sure she was afraid that I would report her to her supervisor for an imagined infraction and she'd soon be feeding her family from the city dump, which is already over crowded with newly starving junketeers from Wells Fargo Bank...!

Just make the first option this one:

"Welcome to The Bank of America. If you want to talk to a human being press One.
If not, press Two for all of the 1,000,000 options that await your ever fraying 21st century patience.

Thank you.

No, I insist...F--- YOU!!!

Bring back Dixie Cups!!!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Fork in the Road

You're walking down the road. It's wooded and verdant. Beautiful.

You come to a fork. Which way to go? Frost liked the "Road Less Travelled."

Whatever.

One path leads to an end...wherever...whatever....whenever.

The other one too.

But path #1 is gravelly, goes up and down hills, across streams, through the desert and is very difficult.

But you're strong and determined and you'll reach the end.

Path #2 is smooth and flat and the air is moved by a gentle breeze and the temperature is steady and comfortable.

Along the way there are several oases and meadows to relax in. There are fruit trees and cool ponds to refresh in. And there are even people to carry you part of the way if you get too tired to walk.

Path #1 is dry and dusty and there isn't much water so you'll have to carry your own. There are no fruit trees or berry bushes so you'll have to carry your own food too. There are no meadows to sleep in so you'll be spending the nights on the cold hard ground. There are no other travellers interested in carrying you...they are too busy making their own way.

Choose either path and you get to the end...your end...wherever that is.

Which would you choose...?

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

But...It is Broke...!

My small town is charming. Tree lined, sidewalked streets. Family parks and a wonderful town common.

We have four very good elementary schools, a fine middle school and one of the best high schools in the state.

But we have our heads up our...

We have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in recent years beautifying our already beautiful, quaint New England town center.

We now have lovely brick sidewalks and crosswalks and brand new light poles with reproduction gaslight housings.

We have tidy benches that are bolted securely in place and strategically placed around town (facing either the roadway or nearby buildings...Godforbid they should face flowers or trees or parks...or each other, fostering human interaction.)

We have planters with the names of those who donated them (trashed every spring by our highly evolved college student population) and one of our walkways, which leads into an especially cute little park, is made up entirely of the engraved names of the loved ones of the people who bought the bricks. In both cases we paid for the installment by the town DPW.

We are also cutting language classes and some of the arts and certain activities because we can't "afford" them (one of the highest tax rates in the state) and there is even talk of closing one of the elementary schools; the smallest one...the one associated with the education department at the university.

What is wrong with us? What the hell is our collective problem?

The United States is lagging far behind other industrialized nations and is being challenged at every turn by the new, former 3rd world, forces in the world; Brazil, China and India.

Those folks all know how to read and write and cipher and think grand thoughts. They can invent and fix and imagine and manifest. They work really hard and prize education. They are not, yet, slaves to popular culture (just wait a few years and they, too, will probably become Disnefied...)

We, on the other hand, spend our money on high school football and i-Pods and McDonalds and brick sidewalks and crosswalks and fancy light poles. Our kids can't read or write or identify Wyoming on a map (remember Pacino's sidekick in "Dog Day Afternoon", when asked what country he wanted to escape to, said, "Wyoming?" He must not have known Dick Cheney lives there...) We're satisfied with a "B "(too bad the world requires straight "A's" to get ahead)

If we, as a culture, don't wake up very soon, all of the beautification will have been for naught because there won't be anyone out and about to use the new stuff.

We'll all be in the unemployment line or in the soup kitchen or in the homeless shelter or hanging by our necks in the garage because we fiddled while our Rome burned to the ground. We'll be a society of Walmart Happy Faces.

Perish the thought!

But we'll deserve it...

Friday, March 6, 2009

All's Fair in...

It's not about the money.

It's not about the fame.

Or the stuff.

It's about fairness.

I don't think we really care (allright, maybe a little...) about the fact that Mr. Generic CEO of whatever Fortune 100 company is making $400,000,000.00 per year plus options and bonuses (bonae...boni...?)

Go for it! You did your homework in school (ok...Exeter and Yale...) You made the right career and business choices. You had the great idea. You got ahead (on whose backs we don't know, but never mind the cynicism...)

You are a success!

I am a failure by western standards. I fooled around in school and played music and chased girls and decided on a life in the "arts" and made the wrong choices and am nearly living under a bridge with a bottle of Night Train (ok...a 2004 Petrus...but never mind...) I am broke.

But here's where the fairness issue kicks in.

Why in holy hell am I bailing you out? You made some bad business decisions (the horror...!)

You screwed up.

Now I am giving you money (well, not me exactly...because my taxes are so low...but you know what I mean) to keep you in business?

Where's my bailout for bad choices? Where's Washington when I need it (spare me about potholes and public schools and the military...unless I can send all of that to my mortgage company...)

Are you kidding?

Well, I guess not.

AIG...GM...Citi...Merrill.

Hand outs and hats (bowlers only...) off to you!

And these clowns who are "sacrificing" by working for an annual salary of $1.00...!

If they can afford to do that...THEY DON'T NEED OUR MONEY!!

Let 'em fail. Let 'em go bankrupt. Let 'em eat sh.........!

Oops, sorry...got carried away...family blog and all.

But, really...

Let's be fair...

Yeah...that's it...

LET'S BE FAIR!!!!!!!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

We're Number 2!!

Give me a break...!

Governor "Bobby" Jindal...

Now, first of all, it's hard to take a politician seriously who has a nick for a first name.

"Jack..."

(he done good...but only after he was assassinated)

"Jimmy..."

(he done good...only after the fact)

"Bill..."

(he done good but won't go away and let us savor his goodness)

Bobby?

The Democrats were the first to win the "Let's Elect a Minority to the Presidency" sweepstakes.

They win. They are the Hertz of the political parties. The Republicans are the Avis...without the "We Try Harder" part (although, one could argue that they do, in fact, try harder to subvert the Constitution and to create gridlock in Washington.) The Republicans are Burger King. They are The Rolling Stones.

And, by being first, the Democrats have to suffer all of the fools who will come after with their version of the "winning ticket."

The Democrats had the youngest and the Catholicest.

The Democrats had the first woman (Ferraro 1.0, Clinton 2.0)

Now they have the first minority, and a black man at that.

So what do the Republicans counter with? Who do they offer up? An Indian named Bobby.
He doesn't even have a recognizably Indian name (I have nothing but admiration for the Indian population. They are smart, incredibly hard working and wonderfully talented...but the ONLY reason Jindal is buzzing is because he's a dark skinned minority...Obamesque.)

Bobby.

Was he named for Bobby Kennedy? Bobby Orr? Bobby Sox?

The Republicans are intellectually bankrupt. They have Rush Limbaugh and John Boehner and Sarah Palin.

Please God!

Why don't they understand that they have lost the argument. What part of torture sanctioning, financial crisising, Constitution ruining, environment polluting, race baiting, unnecessary war mongering and mangling DON'T THEY UNDERSTAND?!

President "Bobby" Jindal. The first Indian-American to hold the office.

But maybe we should try a Native American Indian first.

Chief Hasn't the First Clue...from the Waspsarenogood tribe of East Hampton.

How about him?

Or her...

Equal opportunity political correctness you know.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Shut Up!! (...please)

Words like "refuge", "sanctuary" and "oasis" come to mind.

A place to go to be alone with your thoughts; to be surrounded by beauty and grace; to be inspired by genius and talent.

Ahhh......

The library.

But wait!

The library...as I knew it when I was a kid...no longer exists.

Now the library is the politically correct "Community Use Facility."

What this means to the uninitiated is that the abovementioned words no longer apply.

The library is a place to go to "network"; to "meet up"; to "hook up"; TO FOOL AROUND!"

I love the library. I love the books and magazines. I love the DVDs that you can check out. I love the computers.

What I hate is the fact that I can't concentrate because some twit is sitting next to me talking on the cell phone or some idiot is carrying on with a friend about the soaring price of apples at the local farm stand. Or some imbecile is playing with his toddler and is ceratin that all of us think Little Morton is as cute as Daddy thinks...which we DON'T!

I use the library as a place where I can be creative...intellectually. It is a place where I can get information about whatever I need to know. The librarians are helpful and knowledgeable (and sometime offenders in their own right as they sit and gab with one another about nonsense...shhhhhhhhhhhhhh!) The library is wonderful!

What ever happened to the whisper as an acceptable form of polite communication?

People must communicate. I understand that. I do it too. But why at full volume in the middle of what used to be the only public place left on the planet where you could be surrounded by man's creations and man himself (spare me the PC/feminist rant about "he/she"...it's cumbersome and I'm not in the mood...as if you hadn't noticed) and still feel blissful solitude?

Some would argue that I should seek that solitude elsewhere. But why should I? Why can't the library just be the library and the community center just be the community center and the daycare center just be the daycare center and the senior citizen center just be the senior citizen center...?

Please, in the words of the old half-spectacles, hair-in-a-bun, spinster librarian at my childhood library...

"Please...

SHUT THE F--- UP! (ok...I exaggerate...she never said that...I got carried away...I'm sorry......NOT!)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Catch 22, 2009

Who cares about the gazillionaire CEOs?

What if we were to let them all resign with their righteous indignation parachutes and give the Class of '09 a whack at the corner office (we might not even need the bailout because the new kids would be making a fraction of the old farts pay)?

Trouble is you can't get the job unless you've done the job which you can't get because you have no experience, etc., etc., ad nauseum.

The geniuses who have run the corporate world for so long have slowly, but surely, driven the once celebrated American economy over the cliff (remember how Wile E. Coyote would go over the edge and hover in mid air with his legs twirling until he looked down and them...sssssssssswwoooooooosssssshhhhhhh...he would fall into the vanishing point and then there would be a little, delayed, poof, and he would emerge all crumpled and dirty...?)

Let the SOBs quit!

Let em' eat cake or whatever else their anorexic bimbo wives let em' eat and let em' go play a few rounds of sub-par (or prime) golf...let em' eat their cigars, which, as we all know, sometimes are just cigars, but in the case of the faltering economy, are more like Bill Clinton's idea of Humidor Pleasure going through the back door of the tax paying public.

I digress...

The new crop of Junior G-Men (G as in Genius) from Wharton and Columbia can certainly do a better job.

They come from Obama's Army (more golf...sorry.)

They actually care about the planet and it's overflowing population and they actually have read Tom Friedman's easy read, "The World is Flat", and understand it!

It's time to call the bluffs of the Obese Feline Flubbers of Fiscal Fortitude and let the kids drive the ship for a while.

The young among us have more energy, better ideas, more scruples and more danceable I-Pods then their antique counterparts on the 6:05 from Grand Central.

They should all go to hell, which, if you believe in that sort of thing, is exactly where they are going when they die.

They should just go early...get good seats in the hot tub...and relax in the knowledge that they have screwed up one of the greatest economies in world history.

Way to Go Guys.....WOOOOOOO! YEAH! WHOOPIE!

Thank you, you !@#$%^&*!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Burris under my Saddle

Doesn't "Senator" Burris know he's toast?

Didn't he know this would come out?

And if he didn't, is this the man that Illinois voters deserve to represent them in Washington? A man who is obviously so oblivious to the way things work that he FORGOT to tell the Congress that he met with Rod's bro'?

And when they asked repeatedly, he said no, no, no...

Well then...

NO, NO, NO!!

Just get out!

NOW!

Please spare us the drama. Please spare us the endless news coverage and the speculations/pontifications of the Sunditocracy.

Just go home to Illinois and prepare for jail.

I'm not sure, but I don't think you can lie to Congress, get caught red-handed and then get a pass and continue to be a Senator.

But who knows....maybe you can.

The other clowns in the Senate, who have perpetrated far greater crimes on the society seem to retain their seats...and their health plan and their free military plane rides and their salaries and other perks.

So...maybe we should let "Senator" Burris just hang out.

After all...he's in pretty good company!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Love of My Life

I was reminded today how much I love my wife.

It was nothing really. It was her difficulty in finding the right blouse for work.

As far as I am concerned she looks good in anything...in everything.

She agonizes over what she wears. We call it a "fashion crisis."

Never mind Iraq or Afghanistan or the meltdown on Wall Street.

This blouse does not go with this blazer nor does it go with these pants or these shoes!

Back to square one. We are in Crisis mode now!

That's one of the many reasons why I love her so much. She cares passionately about everything!

Homeless people, dogs, kids, flowers, Spanakopita...you name it...she's passionate about it.

She helps everyone with the same degree of emotional commitment that most people usually reserve for a select few. Not my wife. Large or small, if she's got you on her mind you get the full treatment...the whole shebang!

She's beautiful, smart, bright, funny, compassionate, fearless, full of passion and a total player.
She will go anywhere at anytime for almost no reason...just to go.

She's self made and inspiring.

"She's One in a Million.
That's what they say.
And I'm gonna love her 'til my dyin' day.
I'm just sittin' here waitin' for my baby to come home."

Happy Valentine's Day my love.

You're the only one for me.