Monthly Archives: November 2011

Great Moments in Jurnuhlizzm (Number Googleplex in a Series)

Yes. I KNOW it’s ‘googolplex.’

I haven’t bothered blogging for Sunday, Monday and Tuesday to give the rest of the blogosphere a chance to catch up. Monday’s big story was that Über-”Christian” Theocrat Sam Brownback’s office apologized for having been caught snooping on an 18-year-old high school student. (They did NOT apologize to the student, note. See bottom for his complete ‘apology.’) And Tuesday’s big story was the bill pending in Congress that would essentially destroy the internet in its current, social form. Both were sufficiently dealt with in Friday’s “Brownback Friday.” Are we caught up yet? Great!

Leave it to the increasingly shameful, increasingly subliterate, increasingly apologist-for-every-government-excess Washington Post to print the most shameful swill about l”Affaire Brownback this side of Brownback’s office itself.

Our Profiles in Douchebaggery series turns its unblinking eye to Ruth Marcus of the formerly credible (not in this century, of course) Washington Post opinion staff, who begins her “Wrong-Way Corrigan” jeremiad by noting her vaginal Sphincteresse Oblige:

Emma Sullivan, you’re lucky you’re not my daughter. (Dangerous sentence, I know: My daughters might agree.)

If you were my daughter, you’d be writing that letter apologizing to Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback for the smart­alecky, potty-mouthed tweet you wrote after meeting with him on a school field trip…

It gets worse. But I think we can agree that we’re ALL lucky not to be Marcus’ daughter (or any other of her sentient uterine products). Listen: Continue reading

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Thanksgiving Leftovers

It is in the nature of time to alter our understanding of the past. What follows was refracted through a lens separated from us by endless crises in our annus horribilis of 2011. But it is eerily contemporary, n’est-ce pas?

The Civil Cold War
July 6, 2011 

The only difference is that nobody’s shooting: the secessionism is the same. Just ask the citizens of Minnesota.

The free “Right Wing Doonesbury” doesn’t even bother with humor on July 1.

“When the just say ‘no’”??!?

Paranoid marxo-nazi fantasies are “just”???

But forget the idiocy of an unfunny comic strip predicated on “attractive young adults” lolling around in their underwear and mouthing Right wing hate. Turn the telescope around and look at the eyes that, increasingly, find this swill “funny” or “meaningful” or even ironic. Continue reading

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Brownback Friday

John Brown mural in Kansas state capitol

News Item:

Disparaging tweet about Gov. Sam Brownback lands Kansas teen in principal’s office
By Suzanne Perez Tobias
The Wichita Eagle
Published Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2011, at 6:06 p.m.
Updated Friday, Nov. 25, 2011, at 12:49 p.m.

On Tuesday, Sullivan was called to her principal’s office and told that the tweet had been flagged by someone on Brownback’s staff and reported to organizers of the Youth in Government program.

The principal “laid into me about how this was unacceptable and an embarrassment,” Sullivan said. “He said I had created this huge controversy and everyone was up in arms about it … and now he had to do damage control.

“I’m mainly shocked that they would even see that tweet and be concerned about me,” she said. “I just honestly feel they’re making a lot bigger deal out of it than it actually was.”

Sullivan said the principal ordered her to write letters of apology to Brownback, the school’s Youth in Government sponsor, the district’s social studies coordinator and others.

Karl Krawitz, the school principal, did not return calls or e-mails Wednesday….

It’s Brownback Friday, kiddies. Continue reading

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Less Than Zero

In Thomas Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow (a book that you’ve either read or will never read, so there’s no spoiler here) Yank Tyrone Slothrop turns out to have been the infamous (within psychological conditioning circles) Baby Tyrone.

Young Baby (as opposed to Old Baby, which would be Toddler) Tyrone is conditioned to a Pavlovian response. And, when the scientists realize that the experiment has been a success, they UNcondition him from that response, and a fictional mystery (utterly a novelistic conceit and having nothing to do with Reality) appears: is it possible to condition to Less Than Zero?* In Tyrone Slothrop’s case, it was. In the case of Fox News Viewers, what was once fiction has become Reality, itself, and they owe Thomas Pynchon a tip o’ the old O’Reilly tam-o-shanter, at a bare minimum.

[* OK, technically Pynchon calls it "Beyond the Zero" but it's entirely too complex to go into and doesn't dovetail neatly into the fabulous  Elvis Costello section further down, and it's my metaphor, so nyeah! It's "Less Than Zero" for the duration of this essay.]

Faux Nooz™ viewers have been shown (until the intensely skeptical blogaggle takes the inevitable quick, deconstructionist detour away from their vapours du jour, Whitewarmer II) to be, shall we say? less-well informed than people who don’t watch any news at all.  Continue reading

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Breaking: Oregon Governor Orders Death Penalty Moratorium

Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber has just concluded a press conference* announcing that he was putting the execution of  double-murderer Gary Haugen on hold, and a moratorium on all executions through the remainder of his term.

[* radio story .mp3 is here. Press conference link as soon as I get it. Got it: Video link is here.]

Kitzhaber (the most neutral photo I could
find. He’s either being shot as angel or ogre otherwise) 

He spoke of his angst over a practice that he had been against personally and professionally. And of two Oregon prisoners executed during his first term, which he has regretted ever since. A very somber press conference, with the exception of a reporter who tried to change the subject to something entirely unrelated. Kitzhaber suggested that the issue was not quite of the same import as the death penalty stay. From the Northwest News Network story: Continue reading

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Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with his heel

The times they are a changin’; the serpents are a-writhing’. MSNBC reports this morning [emphasis added]:

Exclusive: Lobbying Firm’s Memo Spells Out Plan to Undermine Occupy Wall Street (VIDEO)
Sat Nov 19, 2011 5:53 AM PSTby Jonathan Larsen and Ken Olshansky
(crossposted from MSNBC’s “Open Channel” blog)A well-known Washington lobbying firm with links to the financial industry has proposed an $850,000 plan to take on Occupy Wall Street and politicians who might express sympathy for the protests, according to a memo obtained by the MSNBC program “Up w/ Chris Hayes.”

The proposal was written on the letterhead of the lobbying firm Clark Lytle Geduldig & Cranford and addressed to one of CLGC’s clients, the American Bankers Association.

CLGC’s memo proposes that the ABA pay CLGC $850,000 to conduct “opposition research” on Occupy Wall Street in order to construct “negative narratives” about the protests and allied politicians. The memo also asserts that Democratic victories in 2012 would be detrimental for Wall Street and targets specific races in which it says Wall Street would benefit by electing Republicans instead.

According to the memo, if Democrats embrace OWS, “This would mean more than just short-term political discomfort for Wall Street. … It has the potential to have very long-lasting political, policy and financial impacts on the companies in the center of the bullseye.”

The memo also suggests that Democratic victories in 2012 should not be the ABA’s biggest concern. “… (T)he bigger concern,” the memo says, “should be that Republicans will no longer defend Wall Street companies.” [...]

No doubt, these were the same jerks screaming about “class warfare” mere weeks ago. Now, they’re planning it. Continue reading

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Pique Oil

Hizzoner

It is surely true that history’s villains never know that they are villains — because they are not blessed with self-awareness. How else would one explain New York’s Michael Bloomberg — who once spent … 0h heck, the New York Post: Continue reading

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So, THESE are the guys screaming ‘Class Warfare’?

Let’s start off with the New York Post, Rupert Murdoch Seal of Approval headline:

That’s right, “rabble.”

You don’t get more culture war-ish than that. Marie Antoinette couldn’t have done better, although had she lived to the Modern Age, she’d undoubtedly be working for NBC, along with Jenna Bush and Chelsea Clinton. And once and perhaps again Maria Shriver. No: Rupert is no respecter of persons. He only respects money and power, and his “flagship” New York newspaper seems to have its finger firmly on the pulse of his Id. Continue reading

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Natal Felicitations

Probably an in-joke. But here ’tis:

Courage.

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Mrs. Ayn Rand Paul’s Fishiness STILL Sticks

This originally appeared on May 24, 2010, months BEFORE the “Tea Party” election. Let’s all see how prophetic it was, or wasn’t, shall we?

No. He wasn’t named after Ayn Rand, although he ought to have been. Suddenly, the media seems to “get” that powerful quasi-libertarian and libertarian forces are at work.

Ayn Kampf

What they DON’T seem to get is the part about the Richie Riches believing that they can finally take over a dispirited and disunified Republican Party. Maybe, if I blog for another several years, they will. But they DO begin to “get” that radical libertarianism is, for most Americans, left and right, a “bridge too far” in its application.

Ross Douthat — usually a reliably conservative (i.e. apologist for greedism) — makes an excellent observation on the so-called “racism” scandal of Dr. Rand Paul. The scandal that broke on a Nashville newspaper’s YouTube video, then on National Public Radio, then in a live interview with Dr. Paul on The Rachel Maddow Show [emphasis added]: Continue reading

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The Story of a Child Predator

I am going to tell a story here that I have never told anyone, except for a wife or two. Maybe it will shed some light on the Penn State scandal, maybe it won’t. But it’s 11-11-11 and it seems appropriate to tell. And, perhaps, as you consider Joe Paterno’s legal situation for having been associated with a sexual predator, you might think of things in the light of a predator’s prey.

Me at the time, slightly altered.

In the fall of my senior year in high school, I was sixteen years old. I was called to the Principal’s office (along with four other students in the first period physics class) and, we were later told, the teacher, Santa Fe High’s sports director — a pretentious jerk who had “Harvard” stickers on his office window, even though he had only attended a summer seminar of some sort there and came from much humbler educational stock — immediately told the remaining students that “troublemakers” would always get caught, and what miscreants we were, etc. etc. It was OBVIOUS that we’d gotten caught in some juvenile prank. An irony that we were all friends, and members of Key Club together, and, thus, OBVIOUSLY guilty as sin of something or other. Continue reading

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