Friday, February 27, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #9299

Meanwhile, in an alternative medicine center hundreds of miles away: "What the...Chinese Zodiac? These aren't the placemats I ordered!"
(Image originally uploaded by dosbears; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Hard Times Mean High Times

The ProRev passes along this graph from FiveThirtyEight which compiles several decades' worth of polling re. marijuana legalization:

Could it be that the Bush-Cheney years made more Americans long for the sweet release of hallucinogens?

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #1346

For yesterday, hallelujah.

Seoul, 1968. "I like Davy." "I like Michael." "I like Micky." "I like Peter." "I like Leonard." Soon Li soon had to find other friends.
(Image originally uploaded by P.m.P; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Outstanding Twits

Man, dday could not be more right about the Beltway media/political elite's new devotion to Twitter, a technology that seems to me to be a big step backward informationally speaking—only 140 characters at a time? most intelligent people I know need more space just to clear their throats, let alone to communicate anything worth reading—but then these are Politico types we're talking about.

Usually DC gets these things 4-6 years after the fact, like my grandparents' rural small-town radio station ("Coming up, music from a hot new band called The Who!"), but Twitter allows the chattering class the double pleasure of maxing out on their Blackberry usage, along with being forcibly constrained by time and space to definitively not talk about anything of import whatsoever. "John Edwards' haircut ZOMG LOLZ" fits the format; an analysis of proposed USDA country-of-origin labeling policy doesn't. And the structure of having "followers" surely appeals to Village types. All in all, it's better than passing notes in junior high! Actually, kind of the same thing!
Yes, I know that many people use it for ITunesing and YouTubing and whatnot, but let's face it: the real glory of the internet is its ability to transmit text quickly—lots of it, and with great convenience. It allows us to get the entire New York Times, or pretty much any newspaper anywhere in the world, or any magazine, or scholarly journal, or blog, or government database, right onto our computers anytime we want: mountains of oft-informative text at the touch of a button. Yet these supposedly elite people think tweeting is cool.

That sound you hear is Neil Postman howling with laughter in the great beyond.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #7740

In what I hope is more an aesthetic judgement than a sign of the times, by far the audience's favorite part of Middleton High's musical production Chicago '68 was when Mayor Daley (Coach Walters) unleashed the Chicago police (the football team) on the Grant Park hippies (the theater kids). Truly, one man's fascism is another man's art criticism.
(Image originally uploaded by ihope4photos; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Not a Place I Would Want to Drop Acid

I was poking around over at Dennis Perrin's place and found an interesting post about the new memoir of former Saturday Night Live writer and Al Franken partner Tom Davis, who apparently was quite into teh drugs—as, apparently, was the rest of SNL, once upon a time, anyway. This bit in particular stood out:

Despite the human wreckage that Davis recounts, it was drugs that inspired SNL's most identifiable characters: The Coneheads. Davis and Dan Aykroyd traveled to Easter Island where they ate acid and soaked in the giant stone heads staring off into eternity. "The Heads! The Heads!" Aykroyd kept saying, and soon he and Davis turned these visions into what remains one of SNL's strangest creations. The physical impact of the giant skulls combined with Aykroyd and Davis' conceptual, mechanical dialogue instantly set The Coneheads apart. Though Davis contributed to other classic SNL moments -- Aykroyd's Julia Child bleeding to death perhaps the most memorable -- and performed a number of great Franken and Davis bits, The Coneheads are perhaps his true comic legacy.
I must say that, knowing what actually happened on Easter Island, I will not be able to find "consume mass quantities" funny ever again.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #6469

Sorry, busy day yesterday.

Y'know, when each of your gastrocnemii has as much muscle mass as all of Kate Moss, maybe it's time to lay off the calf raises for a while.
(Image originally uploaded by ARDENT PHOTOGRAPHER; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Monday, February 23, 2009

One Scar at a Time

Leslie Savan says that Morning Joe is more like a classic family sitcom than like...well, anything worth watching. Very funny.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #5322

Friends scoffed at Craig's decision to purchase and train a guard dog for his stereo, but they quickly saw Buster's value when the next drunk guy at one of his parties to reach for the CD player saying "Hey, let's give a listen to this new Taylor Hicks album I bought" pulled back a bloody stump.
(Image originally uploaded by Sadie Gutierrez; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Sunday, February 22, 2009

My Heart Bleeds

My exact first thought on reading that many Bush political appointees are having trouble finding new jobs:

Let's build a bridge so they can go die under it.

My second thought:

That's wrong because it's uncharitable.

My third thought:

That's wrong because it's pork.

It's like Satan, Jesus, and David Stockman are waging a titanic struggle for control of my soul. Hey, guys, keep it down in there, will ya? I'm trying to read Chomsky.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #3065

Competition was fierce at the 1989 Mandy Patinkoff.
(Image originally uploaded by K Brower-Going to Disney; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Kapo Kulture

Glenn Greenwald does a great job recalling the glory days of the militia movement—the last time a Democrat was in the White House, natch—and pointing out how odd it is that so many selfless sons of liberty were quiet as mice during the Bush-Cheney years despite the massive expansion of federal power, the torture, the wiretapping, the secret prisons, etc. etc. etc. only to start re-hurling their hysterical defiance in the face of the Obama administration after it's been in office barely a month.

Bah. These people don't want to stop tyranny; they want to participate in it.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #6468

One night he flanged when he meant to wah-wah. "That's okay," the groupie said. "We can just cuddle."
(Image originally uploaded by michele lafiandra; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Friday, February 20, 2009

RIP Snooks Eaglin

I was surfing by WWOZ a little while ago and found that the New Orleans legend had died earlier this week.

Even in a city and musical community known for eccentric characters, Mr. Eaglin stood out. Extremely private, he lived with his family in St. Rose. For many years, he refused to perform on Friday nights, reportedly because of religious reasons.

The digits on Mr. Eaglin's right hand flailed at seemingly impossible angles as he finger-picked and strummed a guitar's strings. A set by the so-called "Human Jukebox" could range from Beethoven's "Fur Elise" to Bad Company's "Ready for Love."

He thrived on feedback from onlookers, gleefully took requests and challenged his musicians to keep up. Utterly unselfconscious, he would render fellow guitarists slack-jawed with a blistering run, then announce from the stage that he needed to use the bathroom.

See under generis, sui.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #9141

We're just "friends with benefits."
(Image originally uploaded by; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Terry Jones: Arms Manufacturer

Hey, Terry Jones is turning into Andy Rooney. Except he's funny. And thoughtful. And watchable.

(h/t jules)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #3009

The red-bellied woodpecker has a loud call, likes fruit, and can penetrate concrete when sufficiently aroused—much like Vin Diesel.
(Image originally uploaded by Ga Music Maker; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Going Where the Silence Is

Campus Progress has a nice brief interview with Amy Goodman (h/t FAIR). My favorite bit:

CP: You were actually described by Bill Clinton as being hostile and at times disrespectful. What is your take on that?

AG: I thought it was just interesting that he was surprised in talking to a journalist that I would ask tough questions. We didn’t make an agreement with him before. He was calling into radio stations on the morning of the 2000 election trying to get out the vote for Hillary [for Senate], for Al Gore. We had a few minutes notice. They said the president was calling in, and that was it. He wanted to talk about getting out the vote. Well that was interesting to know what he wanted to talk about. That doesn’t determine what I ask him about. But that is why he was calling. So I asked him about that. I said some people are asking why vote. They believe corporations have captured both parties, and then give him a chance to speak. I mean that’s important, that he has a chance to express his point of view. And then I asked him about Leonard Peltier because it was the first time he was being asked publicly about whether he would be granting him executive clemency. He answered that question. In the end he did give clemency to Mark Rich. I guess Peltier wasn’t rich enough. Then I asked him about the bombing of Puerto Rico. He had called in during a Latino music show, so I was doing it with a guy who hosted the music show, Gonzalo Aburto. We were just asking about many different issues. I asked him about racial profiling. Al Gore had said that the first executive order he issued would be to ban racial profiling. So I said, "You guys have been in office for eight years, why haven’t you done it until now?" I asked him about the sanctions against Iraq and the number of people who died. And that was it. It was about a half-hour interview.

The next day the White House called and said that I would be banned from the White House. I said, "Why? He called me, I didn’t call him." They said, "We said he would talk about getting out the vote." I said, "That’s true. But I didn’t agree that those were the only questions I would ask."

"We told you he only had a few minutes." I said, "True." I said, "How many stations did he call?" They said, "40." I said, "Nobody took more than a few minutes?" They said, "No." I said, "Well, that’s just a sad comment on the media. He is the most powerful person on earth; he can hang up if he wants to."

Sad comment on the media, indeed.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #1020

Oops, sorry, missed yesterday again.

The crowd at Termipalooza was as excited as anyone could be to see Counting Crows.
(Image originally uploaded by deepellen; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

George Will vs. the Internet

It is indeed a thing of beauty to see hornrimmed hack George Will get raked over the coals by Media Matters and others for just making sh*t up in a recent global-warming-denial column, but the cherry on top is supplied by Jonathan Schwarz, who relays a wonderful anecdote about a punking that Noam Chomsky delivered to Will and Newsweek way back in the pre-internet days of 1982. Don't miss it.

If there's one thing to love about the internet, it's the promise it offers when used right: No more impunity for sinecured liars.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #6150

Sorry, couldn't post yesterday. Looks like we have a repeat.

Thanks to poor translations, even the most fervent readers of Revelations were unprepared for the apocalyptic jellyfish rain.
(Image originally uploaded by gx470; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Tomasky on Bipartisanship

He makes the best case I've yet seen for being of good cheer about Obama's unrewarded outreach to Republicans. Tomasky suggests that it's a strategy designed, not so much to appeal to Republican legislators (many of whom are apparently lost causes when it comes to basic rationality), but to appeal to a wide swathe of unaligned voters:

Those middle-of-the-road voters see partisan gridlock as a problem. And what do they see today if they cast their gaze in Washington's direction? They see a president trying to talk about and do something about a problem that they think is important. And they see a Republican bloc that is a living embodiment of that problem every day.

I think, then, that as regards this audience, Obama's bipartisanship is in fact working, and the polls we've seen so far support my thought. He's at an approval rating in the mid-to-high 60s. The Republicans are around 30%. To translate, 30% means that only the hard-shell GOP base is happy with the Republicans in Congress. And 66% or 69%, for a guy who got just under 53% of the vote, means that a significant chunk of people who didn't even vote for him like his approach.

In other words: bipartisanship is a strategy. It's a strategy aimed at isolating the right, and isolating the obstructionists in Congress.

Think of it as an outside-in strategy. That is: we tend to think that change starts in Washington and spreads out to the country. In fact, the opposite is more often the case. Change starts outside the Beltway, and eventually bleeds into it.

Once again, I find myself hoping that Tomasky is right—that Obama's maddening willingness to dicker with the kinds of people who made the mess we're now in is a kind of aikido strategy designed to help them make themselves irrelevant and powerless. I'll admit that karate would be more satisfying to my dark side, but if it results in these people's hands being taken off the levers of power at long last, then hey, whatever works.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #5587

The practice of naming a new puppy after the big news event of the day paid off nicely with Stimulus (above) but less so with Nipple, Bluedress, and Widestance.
(Image originally uploaded by Thowra_uk; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


You Want Nasty and Impolite?

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's recent pissy response to a student who asked him a question about why he opposes the televising of Supreme Court decisions yet eagerly goes out on publicity tours for his own books—"That's a nasty, impolite question," he said—reminded me of the only time my own path crossed with his.

It was in the mid-1980s, either shortly before Scalia joined the Supreme Court or shortly after; I don't remember which. At any rate, he was a controversial figure even then, and he attracted a correspondingly large audience when he made an appearance at Emory University in Atlanta. For the most part, the questions and answers were respectful and predictable; Scalia was already well-practiced in his Federalist Society/originalism shtick, and I was charitable enough (or gullible enough) in those days to take it seriously—as was most of the audience. At one point, however, a couple of the scruffier, more radical students—there weren't many in those days, but they did exist—stood up and shouted at Scalia, "You're just a fascist pig!" Or maybe it was, "You're nothing but a right-wing pig!" Or maybe "You're just a chauvinist pig!" I don't remember exactly; I'm fairly certain that the noun was pig, but my memory of the adjectives is hazy. At any rate, it was way more nasty and impolite than the recent question Scalia got in West Palm Beach.

The audience reaction was immediate: much of the audience booed the outburst, and when one of the clean-cut young Republican youths jumped up and loudly apologized to Scalia for the other students' remark, he got a vigorous round of applause. At the time, I'm a little sad now to say, I joined in that applause. I did not agree with or like Scalia, but I was horrified at hearing a Supreme Court justice spoken to in that fashion. I suppose that a part of me still would be.

But let's just say that now, after twenty-odd years of Scalian jurisprudence—and lord knows how many more to go—my reaction to such an outburst would be...different.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #1011

A fiery horse with the speed of light, a flap of cloth, and a hearty "Hi-yo, Karlheinz!"—it's The Lone Christo!


(Image originally uploaded by amable; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton. Christo gave the Charles Schulz Museum a wrapped doghouse after being mentioned in a Peanuts strip some years before? I did not know that.)


"The Gentleman from Florida"

It's nice having one who talks to bankers like this:

(h/t C&L)

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #7775

For yesterday.

Now let's enjoy the douchey Eurojazz stylings of St. Valentine's Day Saxacre.
(Image originally uploaded by mnph; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Return of the Son of an Open Letter to Chuck Asay

Oh, Chuck. It had been a while since Slate featured one of your cartoons in their daily cartoon email (about the only thing I can routinely stand at Slate), and then, in close succession, Slate went and dropped two flaming bags of crap on my stoop, rang the bell, and ran like hell. And what bags of crap they are. First, this, which I suppose must be your take on the Obama stimulus plan:

Y'know, cartoonists don't usually have a lot of words to work with, so they have to choose them pretty carefully. This makes it all the more mystifying why you chose to have the sign over the lower door say "Bailouts." You see, bailouts are what Wall Street banks—you know, rich people?—are getting, presumably as a reward for their incompetence or something; if we're going to spend billions in taxpayer money on them then I for one would prefer to see them nationalized, temporarily at least, but I'm sure that the very thought of nationalization makes your testicles retract in terror, so let's not go there. But you might at least acknowledge the difference between government spending to stimulate economic activity and create jobs in hard times and government spending to reward bankers for incompetence. If you're capable of understanding the difference.

And then there was your charming take on President Obama and his Secretary of State:

Yep: Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton (former United States Senators both) are wide-eyed naifs; our enemies (all Muslims, apparently) are subhuman brutes. Except for the one who's a scoutmaster or something. What's up with that? I mean, the infantilizing of Democrats, the racist depiction of Muslims—these I understand. They're fairly standard tools in the right-wing cartoonist's box. But the Iraqi guy in the scoutmaster outfit with his hand in his pants greeting the two impressionable young children—what exactly was going on in your mind when you decided to mix that little bit of incongruity in with your otherwise troglodyte tropes?

I don't want to know, do I?


Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #1573

Catchin' up—for Friday.

Dang Abyss creatures. They always think they have the right of way.
(Image originally uploaded by Steve Jasczak; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


It Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Stooge

I'm sure that my friend jules already knows about this, but just in case, allow me to be the bearer of good news: Juan Williams has finally been smacked down by the NPR ombudsman—this over a recent appearance on Bill O'Reilly's show where he basically called Michelle Obama "Stokely Carmichael in a designer dress." It's not much of a smackdown—"NPR's Vice President of News, Ellen Weiss, has asked Williams to ask that Fox remove his NPR identification whenever he is on O'Reilly"—but then this will drastically reduce his usefulness in the See? Even Nominally Public Radio commentators agree that liberals are whacko department. Of course, his usefulness in the See? Even black guys agree that liberals are whacko department remains undiminished, so one doubts he'll be out of Fox's Rolodex anytime soon. Nor will those hard hours of simile freewriting be wasted. Will it be "H. Rap Brown in Manolo Blahniks" that gets him in trouble next? Stay tuned!

I know that jules will also appreciate this comment from Weekend Edition host Scott " an ex-Quaker" Simon:

"We don't monitor what Juan says on Fox -- or for that matter, his books or other appearances," said Simon by email. "Juan is one of the foremost chroniclers of the history of the U.S. Civil Rights Movement and African-American life...I think the world of Juan, and he is on our show because the analysis that he offers is insightful, reasoned, fair-minded and interesting."

But after watching the Fox segment, Simon said, "What can I say? That's not the Juan Williams who is on our show."

We're here at NPR, where we've replaced Scott Simon's usual pundit with Juan Williams. Let's see if anyone else can tell the difference—or at least pretend to convincingly.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #9376

Catching up: this is for Thursday. Sure, it was the 200th birthday of Lincoln and Darwin, the 205th deathday of Immanuel Kant, and, perhaps most underappreciated of all, the 72nd birthday of Joe Don Baker, but all I've got for the occasion is a cheap joke about Ann Coulter. Call it The Descent of Nash.

Sarah Michelle Gellar IS Ann Coulter in Not Without My Adam's Apple. Next on Lifetime.
(Image originally uploaded by Craig Stephen; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Kurt Vonnegut Motivational Posters!

Here. One of my biggest regrets in life involves passing up the chance to meet him back in college when a friend of mine was interviewing him for the student paper. I don't even remember what I was doing instead, but I'm damn sure I would have remembered talking to Kurt Vonnegut. Sigh.

(h/t ProRev)

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #1734: Happy Belated Generik's Birthday Flickr Blogging

Whew. I'm sorry for the inadvertent hiatus, but last week was a rough one. I'm especially sorry to my friend Generik for missing his birthday on Wednesday; I hope it was a good one! I couldn't find a set of Remora Tools, so this will have to do.

For your birthday, I got you an think it's supposed to be Don King, but I prefer to think of it as Cornel West. Don't ask about the hair.
I also got you tickets for Waiting for Dogot. Yeah, I thought it was a typo too. My bad.
In unrelated news, I'm told that navigation is often treacherous downwind from a Phish concert.
Have you accepted Jesus as your personal lord and savior yet? If not, perhaps these tablets will help.
I told you not to ask about the hair.
(Image originally uploaded by kookaloo, Marrrina1971, c.tabler, √ {▲+ }, and; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Coming Up Next on The Factor: Cognitive Dissonance

The Daily Show has fun with Bill O'Reilly's astonishing ability to compartmentalize his indignation.

It's too bad that more people don't know John Amato's advice for O'Reilly ambush victims: Just repeat "Andrea Mackris" until the Fox droids scurry dejectedly away, pretending that nothing happened.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #0944

ur doin it wrong
(Image originally uploaded by patferland; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)



One-man wrecking crew (especially when it comes to the Washington Post) Dean Baker was the guest on yesterday's Media Matters with Bob McChesney, and the result was an enlightening conversation about bubbles, the lack of accountability in the economics profession, the Obama stimulus package and its Republican discontents, the media's coverage of the stimulus debate, etc. It's well worth a listen for those so inclined.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #8493

"I'm beginning to wish I'd never bought you that copy of the Kama Sutraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa"
(Image originally uploaded by Ori Kuper 2; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


"A Jihad against Private Enterprise"?

Perhaps there should be an award called The Slurry just so Brit Hume could win it for that nasty remark about FDR. It's almost elegant, what with its managing to link the old paranoiac obsession of the Right (communism) with the new paranoiac obsession of the Right (Islam)—and all in only ten syllables.

Hume loses points, though, for combining this with the old falsehoods-asserted-confidently-magically-become-true technique: "everybody agrees, I think, on both sides of the spectrum now, that the New Deal failed." Um, no, they don't.

Brit, dude: lie, slur, or pontificate ignorantly—but not all at once. That just muddles the focus.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #8326

For tomorrow! But the theme is, like, so yesterday, man.

In other news, Pope Benedict generated more controversy today when he was overhead saying that as far as he was concerned, a "guitar mass" sounded like something that had to be removed from a colon. Now this.
(Image originally uploaded by numstead; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton. For more see mmmrroww hisss spittt)


A Thought on the Media

With performances like this, this, this, and this, ABC News could not seem more like a bunch of servile, bootlicking servants of oligarchy if it was caught on its knees in a hotel room servicing the Monopoly Man.


Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #3466

Get out of my dreams, Flickr.

"Well, ma'am, media chattering aside, *breathe* I'm not worried that my candidacy will be damaged *breathe* by my recent appearance on MSNBC. *breathe* After all, how many voters have not dreamed *breathe* of crushing Joe Scarborough's windpipe with the power of their minds? *chuckle* *breathe* So I stand by my action, *breathe* and I hope I can count on your vote in November."
(Image originally uploaded by russ257; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


The Fourth Branch of Government

Talk radio, that is, which perhaps explains a thing or two about the mess we're in today, huh?

But wait: surely the GOP is only begging for help from talk radio because of the mainstream media's horrible liberal bias.

Yeah, right.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #4954

Authenticity issues also dogged the East Anglia Romano-Brittanic Reenactment Society. "But there's no record of the Britons ever charging a lunch truck." "Maybe not, but intelligence says they're almost out of Hot Pockets. To arms, men!" *roar, charge*
(Image originally uploaded by jgmdoran; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Yes, More Like This, Please

Courtesy C&L:

“When you start hearing arguments, on the cable chatter, just understand a couple of things,” [President Obama] said. “No. 1, when they say, ‘Well, why are we spending $800 billion [when] we’ve got this huge deficit?’ – first of all, I found this deficit when I showed up, No. 1.

“I found this national debt, doubled, wrapped in a big bow waiting for me as I stepped into the Oval Office.”

Yes—don't miss an opportunity to hang this mess around the neck of the Republicans like a big stinking dead albatross. As first weeks of Obama's presidency have gone by and the Republicans and their de facto media allies have seemed to be gaining an implacable momentum in their efforts to mock, slice, dice, and julienne-fry the stimulus proposal into a too-little-too-late mess that Obama and the Democrats can nonetheless be blamed for come 2010, I've been clinging to the hope that this is all part of some grand strategy: let the cable natterers natter and the Republican crybabies cry, then mount the bully pulpit and slap them all around with some well-timed, well-targeted national addresses that will remind the non-Beltway part of the country (a) who really made this economic mess and (b) who got elected to fix it—and maybe remind people just how incompetent and/or dishonest large chunks of the media/political elite have been revealed to be during the last eight years. And lo! apparently the Big O is planning a prime-time news conference for Monday and (hopefully) an address from the Oval Office as well.

Please, please, please, Mr. President: use every bit of the considerable political acumen that you possess to regain the momentum and put these satans behind thee where they belong. I hate to invoke Machiavelli, especially a sentence after alluding to Christ, but to adapt the Florentine: Sound bipartisan if you must, but act in as partisan a manner as the times demand. We've had decades of tax-cutting and deregulating and government-bashing, and look where we've ended up. It's time to stop listening to the current crop of Republicans; there are simply too few of them with brains and/or consciences. Send them to the kiddie table where they belong, and get on with the business of governing. Scrap the bipartisanship nonsense; in a sane society it might mean something, but in our society it's merely a euphemism for "more of the same"—and as you've just said:

"I don't care if you're driving a hybrid or SUV. If you're driving toward a cliff, you have to change direction,'' Obama told his party, applauding the words of their new president at the start of a weekend retreat. "That's what the American people called for."
Amen. Now please grab the damn steering wheel and don't let go.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #5316

I can understand wanting to get the kids out of the house for the summer, but Sumo Camp? "Only those who can push Tsurugoshiki out of circle may enjoy delicious sloppy joe repast." "Please, master—we're already weak with hunger." "Push or starve."
(Image originally uploaded by pkontou; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


How Dry We Are

We did not really have the hard freeze that had been forecast at one point—and Lord knows we're not suffering from the kind of harsh winter weather that's making life hell for much of the rest of the country (never fear, the Amish are here!)—but still, this is pretty wild:

Mind you, in humid old Florida we go through months where the dew point doesn't go below, like, 70, so seeing one of 15 is quite remarkable. And it was at 7 at one point yesterday. Exercising without being drenched in sweat? Men, it can be done.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #0483

Increasingly lax standards caused dissension within the Society for Creative Anachronism, East Central Missouri chapter. "I'm telling you, I've looked and looked, and there are no cargo pants anywhere in the Bayeaux Tapestry." "Well, look harder, 'cause I ain't goin' home to change."
(Image originally uploaded by Kharma Celestine (Kc); Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Evict Him from the Rolodex, Already

The real mystery is not why Bernie Goldberg backed out on someone like Howard Kurtz but why someone like Howard Kurtz continues to treat Bernie Goldberg as a respectable media critic in the first place. The die for Goldberg should have been cast back in 2002, when, among other things, the Howler caught him screaming at the New York Times for feminazi male-bashing in a story—without bothering to tell his readers that the story in question was about insects, not humans. Such an error indicates, at best, astounding incompetence as a reader and, at worst, shameless mendacity as a critic. And such convenient errors—convenient for those desperate to market the "liberal media" meme, anyway—have been multiplied over the years. What does it take to get kicked out of the mainstream media's rolodex, anyway?

Well, I guess that if Goldberg backed out because he's afraid that even a milquetoasty meme-pusher like Howard Kurtz would ask him questions he doesn't want to answer, then maybe that's a sign of progress. Always look on the bright side, nash.

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #1681

For yesterday. I know I call it "Daily Random Flickr Blogging," but as long as we understand that in my universe daily means "at least one per day, eventually," we're copacetic.

Meanwhile, in Oklahoma: "Oh, no, the sun's going out! Quick: throw some more books on the fire and commence the incantations."
(Image originally uploaded by ejwwest; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Almost Poignant

Between these photos of an apparently crying George Bush posted by Digby and this story of a lonely Donald Rumsfeld struggling to catch a bus (h/t jules), we are given a healthy reminder that, even with all of their power and all of the damage they were capable of doing to the world, such people too, like all conditioned beings, suffer.

Forgive me if I can't resist adding one word: Good.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #1464

Not a muscle car so much as a thyroid car. Damn you, peak oil!
(Image originally uploaded by Deimos411; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


Daily Random Flickr Blogging, #6969

For yesterday, sorry, when I was busy and then subjected myself to the Stupor Bowl. Tell her there's a spot out 'neath Abrams Bridge, and tell her there's a crotchcam on the edge of town.

Seems like overkill for a gopher problem, but who am I to tell Donald Rumsfeld how to run his plantation?
(Image originally uploaded by sebastiansundmark; Random Flickr Blogging invented by Tom Hilton.)


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