Monday, March 31, 2008

A Poem For Monday

The Clock Tower at City Hall, Philadelphia
as seen from my window on 3/30/08

Still Another Day: XVII/Men

The truth is in the prologue. Death to the romantic fool,
to the expert in solitary confinement,
I’m the same as the teacher from Colombia,
the rotarian from Philadelphia, the merchant
from Paysandu who saves his silver
to come here. We all arrive by different streets,
by unequal languages, at Silence.

-- Pablo Neruda

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Tide is Turning (Unabashedly Pro-Obama, That's Me)

This is a lovely piece by filmmaker and blogger Bob Cesca (who also contributes to The Huffington Post). Moving imagery--and the equally-moving words of Senator Obama--are set to Roger Waters' heartfelt The Tide is Turning.

(Die-hard Clinton and McCain supporters might want to give this one a miss.)

Also at Cogitamus.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Friday, March 21, 2008

Friday Frank: Outrage at Valdez; 1992, Frankfurt

Frank Zappa originally wrote this beautiful neoclassical piece, entitled Outrage at Valdez, for the Cousteau Society's documentary Alaska: Outrage at Valdez, which appeared on TBS in 1990. Performed by Zappa and the Ensemble Modern, it is also featured on Zappa's album The Yellow Shark. Notice the wide variety of instruments Zappa employs for this composition, which includes a lute, a bassoon, and a harp.

In case anyone is paying attention to what the judiciary branch of our government is up to these days, Exxon has been arguing--forcefully arguing--against paying a $2.5 billion punitive award to Alaskans. The corporation have spent $3.4 billion in cleanup costs over the past 18+ years; however, the environmental and economic damage to Alaska were, and remain, catastrophic. At this point, though, Exxon do not feel they owe, or should have to pay, any punitive damages, long-respected tenets of maritime law notwithstanding. The case is now before the Supreme Court and a decision is not expected until July of this year.

I therefore dedicate this piece to the animals and citizens of Prince William Sound, Alaska.

(H/T bongolampo)

Also at Cogitamus.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

What Bill Maher Said

Comedian Bill Maher appeared on MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews yesterday (you can watch the video clip here), discussing, among other things, his reaction to Barack Obama's speech about race:

"It was such a pleasure to hear a speech for adults, to adults, that didn't pander, that was eloquent.

You know, it's like reading a book nowadays, Chris, you know, so much's not really writing. You read a John Grisham book and it's like you know it's just an outline for the script for the movie.

And then, once in a while you read great writing, and you go, Ohhh, what a pleasure. And that's what it was like to listen to that speech, for me."

Also at Cogitamus.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Meanwhile, Violence and Oppression Continue in China

"Just as a mother would protect with her life her own son,
her only son,
so one should cultivate an unbounded mind
towards all beings, and loving-kindness towards all the world."

-- from the Sutta Nipata

While the news Stateside focuses on all that money, money, money making the world go around, all hell is breaking loose around that same world. Perhaps it's time to lift our eyes from all the admittedly complicated woes here at home and look outward for a moment:
China's security forces moved to seal off roads and sent reinforcements into large swaths of western China in an effort to contain spreading antigovernment protests by Tibetans, residents in the region said.

Hundreds of Tibetans marched in the village of Riwa in Sichuan province for the fourth day yesterday. Multiple witnesses said that on Saturday, police there opened fire on protesters, killing at least three people. Police declined to comment.

Riwa is near the southern end of an arc of demonstrations in areas populated by Tibetans -- stretching across parts of the provinces of Yunnan, Sichuan, Qinghai and Gansu -- that have followed in the wake of violent protests in Lhasa, the capital of Tibet, on Friday.

To the north of Riwa, in Zhuoni county in Gansu province, an estimated 400 to 500 Tibetans staged a march yesterday and set fire to the local police station and the county-government office, according to a monk who said he took part.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi is set to address the conflict and heads eastward this week during the recess, accompanied by fellow Democrats Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Jim McDermott (D-Wash.), George Miller (D-Calif.), Jim Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-Wis.), Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), Hilda L. Solis (D-Calif.), Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Rush Holt (D-N.J.) and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.):
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) will travel to India this week, sources close to the Speaker confirmed on Tuesday.

The source declined to provide any details of the itinerary. However, the Washington Post reported on Tuesday that Pelosi will travel to Dharmsala, India, headquarters of the Dalai Lama's exile organization.

The Dalai Lama’s homeland of Tibet has been rocked by violent riots over the past week. Demonstrators have taken to the streets to protest Chinese rule, which has governed Tibet since 1951. On Monday, the Dalai Lama issued an impassionate plea to Tibetan citizens, threatening to resign if the protesters continued to use violence as a form of protest.

As of Tuesday, Pelosi had not announced any plans to meet with the Dalai Lama; however, she has been an outspoken advocate of the exiled Tibetan leader in the past. Last week Pelosi issued a statement criticizing the Chinese government’s handling of the protests saying: “The violent response by Chinese police forces to peaceful protesters in Tibet is disgraceful.”
What the Candidates Say

Senator Clinton calls for China to respect human life and avoid escalation:
"I am deeply concerned about the violent clashes that have erupted in Lhasa, Tibet. Based on the limited information available, there is an urgent need for all parties, and in particular the Chinese security forces, to exercise restraint, to demonstrate respect for human rights and to protect civilians from danger. I call on the Chinese government to prevent further escalation of this conflict and to urgently pursue resolution through peaceful means."
Senator Obama condemns the violence, urges respect for human rights, and calls for Chinese to provide information on the Buddhist detainees:
"I am deeply disturbed by reports of a crackdown and arrests ordered by Chinese authorities in the wake of peaceful protests by Tibetan Buddhist monks," the Illinois senator said in a statement late Friday.

"I condemn the use of violence to put down peaceful protests, and call on the Chinese government to respect the basic human rights of the people of Tibet, and to account for the whereabouts of detained Buddhist monks."
Senator McCain also urges restraint in a published statement, and pushes the Chinese to allow international access to Tibet:
"I urge the Chinese authorities to ensure peaceful protest is not met with violence, to release monks and others detained for peacefully expressing their views and to allow full outside access to Tibet," he said in a statement.
Also at Cogitamus.

John McCain's Latest Spritual Guide: "Ready Your Weapons! Lock and Load!"

We all know about John McCain's endorsement by John Hagee, he of the anti-Catholic bigotry, inflammatory sermons, and general End Times wackiness. (By "we all", I'm referring to those of us who don't rely solely on America's heavily-filtered traditional media for our information.)

Anyway, McCain kinda-sorta distanced himself from John Hagee--and then only after über-Catholic firebrand Bill Donohue blasted him enough times, certainly not because the St. John-worshipping media said anything remotely negative. And it looks like Parsley is the new sage--Rod Parsley, that is. He's an Ohio megachurch pastor and John McCain's latest "spritual guide" (McCain's words). Is it me, or does it seem to you, too, that John McCain is unnaturally fond of megachurches? Behold:

And last month:

McCain campaigned yesterday in Cincinnati, where he appeared with the Rev. Rod Parsley of World Harvest Church of Columbus. McCain called Parsley a "spiritual guide," while Parsley later labeled McCain a "strong, true, consistent conservative." …

Parsley shared the stage with McCain during a rally at Hamilton County Memorial Hall in Cincinnati but didn't speak.

In a later interview, Parsley said he supports McCain because the senator will be tough on national security and "protect the unborn."

UPDATE: Surprise, surprise. McCain's latest spiritual guide calls for war (I don't think America will be very keen--we've already got one.) From Mother Jones (my bolds):

Senator John McCain hailed as a spiritual adviser an Ohio megachurch pastor who has called upon Christians to wage a "war" against the "false religion" of Islam with the aim of destroying it.

On February 26, McCain appeared at a campaign rally in Cincinnati with the Reverend Rod Parsley of the World Harvest Church of Columbus, a supersize Pentecostal institution that features a 5,200-seat sanctuary, a television studio (where Parsley tapes a weekly show), and a 122,000-square-foot Ministry Activity Center. That day, a week before the Ohio primary, Parsley praised the Republican presidential front-runner as a "strong, true, consistent conservative." The endorsement was important for McCain, who at the time was trying to put an end to the lingering challenge from former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, a favorite among Christian evangelicals. A politically influential figure in Ohio, Parsley could also play a key role in McCain's effort to win this bellwether state in the general election. McCain, with Parsley by his side at the Cincinnati rally, called the evangelical minister a "spiritual guide."

Also at Cogitamus.

They'll Bedazzle You--When it Behooves Them

TRex takes the words out of my mouth (mine were considerably nastier, actually, so hats off to the gentleman lizard king for being polite):

Okay, got it? Republicans only believe in government handouts for rich people.

And they’ll bust their asses to do it, too. Prisoners have been sitting in cages at Guantanamo Bay for six years in complete legal limbo, no charges even filed. People on the Gulf Coast are living in poisonous trailers and under blue tarps nearly three years after Hurricane Katrina. But J.P. Morgan Chase and Company got themselves a big fat $236,000,000 check from the Fed to buy Bear Stearns in under 72 hours.

Hot damn, god bless America, y’all! Who the hell says we can’t get anything done?


Sunday, March 16, 2008

Memories of Testosterone

In response to my recent post (appearing here and at Cogitamus) about the killing of the Republican brand, Lisa Simeone posted a comment quoting New York Times reader Mitch Luckett of Washington, who'd written a response to Maureen Dowd's latest column (got all that?!) Anyway, I felt this gentleman's words--chilling, articulate, and powerful--really got to the heart of the matter and deserved to be spotlighted. Herewith, the comment:

Bush is suffering from what I call, "memories of testosterone." I see it in many middle-aged friends of mine who were draft dodgers, AWOL and just plain cowards during the Vietnam war. As young men, they didn't use their testosterone when they had plenty of it and now, in some strange--but still safe--way are romanticizing combat and thereby recapturing the one way deemed certain in our society to prove their manhood. A manhood, I might add, that, with increasing age, gets further out of reach if abandoned in youth. For years my friends chided and poked fun at me because I was "stupid" enough to obey the draft law. That all stopped about the time we turned fifty. Then I began receiving curious, if not bizarre, invitations. One friend, who went AWOL and spent 5 years in Canada weaving tree bark into peace signs, called me up and tried to get me to join his Civil War Re-enactment brigade: "We get to wear uniforms and carry rifles and mock shoot the other side. It's great fun." His enthusiasm for war games would have been amusing had it not been so revealing. I declined, claiming gout. Another middle-aged "peace-neck" friend joined the NRA and started collecting WWI weapons, and still another became an apprentice blacksmith at a Washington Army installation that forged officers' swords. When the four of us get together we--that is they--tell bogus romantic war stories and encourage me to tell authentic romantic war stories. I know some authentic ones, but none romantic and authentic. I can't of course. Those of us that have been there got the romance kicked out of us in about ten seconds. My socializing with my post-fifty draft-dodgers is depressing. Much more so than when they used to mock me for going to Viet Nam. It's depressing as well because Bush reminds me of them--and vice versa. Could it be Bush attacked Iraq merely for memories of testosterone? To prove his manhood because he failed so miserably to do so when he was a young man. And worse, does he really believe he is doing our young military men and women a favor by starting this war? You know, could be. The only thing more powerful than testosterone itself is memories of testosterone. And that's because the person with memories of testosterone has the political power to go along with it. Bang! Bang! You're dead. I'm finally a man. Better late than never.

-- Mitch Luckett

I've heard many an admirable attempt to explain the inexplicable when it comes to Dear Leader's actions. This one shouts Eureka.

Brought to You By the Letters F and U, and the Number 2

This sorely-needed funny break in what has become a far-too-serious primary season is brought to you by the letter Lee and the numbers adorable and precocious.


"He Killed Our Brand...That Bastard!"

Nice job, pendejos.

What on Earth did you expect would happen when you handed the keys to a low-IQ, dry-drunk, functional illiterate with narcissistic personality disorder and a raging God complex? Of course there would be fatal collisions, spectacular explosions, and a wake of destruction as far as the eye could see. The real tragedy, though, is that there are millions of innocents out there who've been maimed or killed, you know, the ones who knew it was a terrible idea to let him drive in the first place.

"It's no mystery," said Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (R-Va.). You have a very unhappy electorate, which is no surprise, with oil at $108 a barrel, stocks down a few thousand points, a war in Iraq with no end in sight and a president who is still very, very unpopular. He's just killed the Republican brand."

Stuart Rothenberg, a nonpartisan analyst of congressional politics, said: "The math is against them. The environment is against them. The money is against them. This is one of those cycles that if you're a Republican strategist, you just want to go into the bomb shelter."

Enjoy shopping for those bomb shelters, Republican strategists. Perhaps Lockheed will give you a bulk discount.

At Cogitamus.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Friday Frank: Freak Out With The Mothers of Invention; 1967

I'll let the gentleman who posted this awesome piece of music history clue you in:

This three minute film was created by Frank Zappa and Me in the late 60's to illustrate the art of UNDERGROUND MERCHANDISING of his album FREAK OUT! It was the begining of our filming relationship that lasted two years and became the initial shooting for UNCLE MEAT. This opening was shot at the Garrick Theater in Greenwich Village.

I did all the shooting for the next two years with a silent camera so that Frank could score it himself. To read the whole story check out my Zappa web site at

Enjoy! Bon Weekend, everyone.

Also at Cogitamus.

Barack Obama: Righting the Wrongs of Wright

BREAKING: In a stunning blog post (!) at the Huffington Post, Barack Obama addresses the inflammatory statements made last year by now-retired Rev. Jeremiah Wright at the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, which the Senator and his family attend:

The pastor of my church, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, who recently preached his last sermon and is in the process of retiring, has touched off a firestorm over the last few days. He's drawn attention as the result of some inflammatory and appalling remarks he made about our country, our politics, and my political opponents.

Let me say at the outset that I vehemently disagree and strongly condemn the statements that have been the subject of this controversy. I categorically denounce any statement that disparages our great country or serves to divide us from our allies. I also believe that words that degrade individuals have no place in our public dialogue, whether it's on the campaign stump or in the pulpit. In sum, I reject outright the statements by Rev. Wright that are at issue.

Read the entire post and experience the heartfelt, thoughtful, and beautifully sculpted writing of a profoundly intelligent man. Bravo, Senator, and not a moment too soon.

Update: Unspeakably, Unimaginably Weak Justice

Megan Williams, about whom I wrote last year, is a young black woman whom several career criminals kidnapped, raped, and brutally tortured for days in a West Virginia mobile home. After her story took some tragic twists and turns that included the victim herself being prosecuted for writing bad checks (heartbreakingly, to a pizza place and a children's clothing store), Megan has finally realized a small measure of justice. And it is small, especially considering the magnitude and hatefulness of the violent crimes involved, but it is something. Melissa writes:

In February, defendants Alisha Burton and George Messer both pleaded guilty to assault and kidnapping and were each sentenced to 10 years. Yesterday, after pleading guilty, Frankie Brewster (who owned the trailer in which Williams was held captive and is the mother of another defendant, Bobby Brewster) was sentenced to 10-25 years for second-degree sexual assault, and Karen Burton (Alisha's mother) was sentenced to 10 years for violating Williams' civil rights and two 2-10-year sentences for assault, which will be served consecutively.. Brewster will be eligible for parole in 10 years, and Burton after 6 ½.

Needless to say, the sentences hardly seem sufficient, not only because of the duration and horror of what Williams was put through, but also because of the defendants' criminal histories. At the time, Logan County (West Virginia) Sheriff W.E. Hunter said: "They all have previous records and have been arrested numerous times. They are familiar to law enforcement." Frankie Brewster, for example, had already served five years after pleading down a first-degree murder charge to manslaughter.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Monster in the Mirror

This is dedicated to my partner in EschaCon Crime (a monstrously funny theropod if ever there was one), as well as anyone who's feeling fuzzy and blue--periodically, sporadically, intermittently, or even indefinitely--and of course my three darling sons, to whom I am always referring as Monsters, having done so since Day One.

I suppose this means I have a low monster threshold.

If your mirror has a monster in it, do not shout--
This kind of situation does not call for freaking out.
And do nothing that you would not like to see him do,
'Cause that monster in the mirror he just might be you!

Also at Cogitamus.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

What If Geraldine Ferraro's Convicted-Felon Son Had Been Black?

It's hard to speculate--with any degree of certainty, I mean--but something tells me this 1988 scenario might have played out a little differently:

John Zaccaro Jr., son of the 1984 Democratic Vice-Presidential candidate, Geraldine A. Ferraro, is spending his four-month prison term for selling cocaine in a $1,500-a-month luxury apartment in Vermont with maid service, cable television and privileges at the Y.M.C.A. next door.

John Zaccaro Jr., son of the 1984 Democratic Vice-Presidential candidate, Geraldine A. Ferraro, is spending his four-month prison term for selling cocaine in a $1,500-a-month luxury apartment in Vermont with maid service, cable television and privileges at the Y.M.C.A. next door.

He is staying at his own expense in one of 12 units in a building designed for expense-account business people on short assignments in Burlington, Vt. ''We like to think of it as a cross between an apartment and a hotel, with the advantages of both,'' a spokeswoman for the building's owners said, according to an article yesterday in The Daily News in New York.

Mr. Zaccaro, convicted in April of selling a quarter-gram of cocaine to an undercover officer, was determined eligible for the state Correction Department's house arrest program, under which nonviolent convicts can find their own housing and live under what is said to be close supervision by correction officials.

John Quinn, who prosecuted Mr. Zaccaro, said, ''This guy is a drug felon and he's living in conditions that 99.9 percent of the people of Vermont couldn't afford.''

Also at Cogitamus.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

A Helping Hand for Florida?

From the inimitable Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

The writers are back! The writers are back!

Friday, March 07, 2008

Swiftly, Sweetly: Reject! Denounce!

Stop whatever you're doing and head over to Jon Swift, okay? Just do it:

But that is just one of many endorsements that Obama has refused to distance himself from. Some bloggers have pointed out that one of the actors in the viral pro-Obama video "Yes We Can" by Will.I.Am of the Black-Eyed Peas is Eric Balfour, who played a featured character on the patriotic television show 24, but also "has appeared in several extremely explicit films. A quick search shows up one particular NC17 movie Lie With Me, one of the only modern films to contain unstimulated sexual material," according to PWConservative. "Unstimulated" sex is one of the worst kinds of sex a person can have and shame on the filmmakers for showing it. Does Obama reject and denounce Balfour's support or does he think our children should be exposed to unstimulated sex? "Now while I understand that Sen. Obama cannot account for all endorsements, I would appreciate if his campaign would apologize for this ad, given it's disrespect for Christian Values," says PWConservative quite reasonably. But Obama has yet to denounce the video, which his campaign did not produce, for letting this actor appear in it, or the show 24, for that matter.

Friday Frank: Montana

The video quality here is...well, it's pretty bloody terrible, to be honest. But this Montana is such a great version of a fantastic song, I'm posting it anyway. I know you'll forgive the flickering old analog stuff of yesteryear, since Mr. Zappa's signature word-absurdity, combined with yet another virtuoso guitar solo, make it well worth setting aside the shiny-happy video standards by which we measure pretty much everything in 2008. Quick and dirty can be good!

Bon Weekend, everyone.

(H/T jorgehserra)

Also at Cogitamus.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Catholic League to John McCain: Reject and Denounce Hagee's Bigotry Now

"He should be forced to address it [the issue]
everywhere he campaigns."
-- McCain spokesman Dan McLagan on then-presidential candidate George W. Bush, who had visited with, and been endorsed by, known anti-Catholic bigot Bob Jones, in 2000

"If we lose any of the Catholic vote we'll lose the election."
-- Bush campaign adviser Deal Hudson on the Republican Party Catholic Strategy initiative, in 2004

"Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand."
-- Jesus, on all of us, a long--but not that long--time ago

Republican presidential nominee John McCain has a nasty little religion problem about which the traditional media aren't saying an awful lot. Specifically, McCain has embraced the endorsement of Texas über-televangelist and pastor John Hagee. Trouble is, Hagee is a known bigot as well as a frighteningly extreme character who has gone on record and video--and countless times at that--spewing anti-Catholic hatred and making all manner of outrageous statements. Via TPM:

Hagee's comments about world affairs can make Farrakhan seem pedestrian at times: He eagerly awaits the Armageddon, considers the Catholic Church to be the Anti-Christ, and has said that Jews brought their own persecution upon themselves.

Bear in mind this salient fact: there are 64 million Catholics in the United States, and many of them identify as "conservative Catholics". One needn't be among their numbers to understand that they are not terribly happy about Hagee's characterizations of, or predictions for, members of their faith.

And the resonance and significance of Senator McCain's continuing silence on the matter of the John Hagee endorsement rival that of a thousand rats' asses not being given.

Catholic League president Bill Donohue, in an interview with Salon's Glenn Greenwald, said: "If someone said to me: who is the biggest anti-Catholic bigot in the evangelical community, I would say: hands down, John Hagee". Donohue now appears to find himself in the unusual position of actually praising a high-profile Democrat--in this case, presidential candidate Senator Obama, for his clear and matter-of-fact "denouncement and rejection" of Louis Farrakhan. In a March 4th letter to League members, he calls for McCain to do likewise:
The difference between the way Obama and McCain have handled their endorsements by bigots is enormous. Even worse, McCain actually solicited Hagee’s endorsement. [...] In short, Obama has set the bar for McCain. Whether he wants to clear it or walk away is his choice.

And in a follow-up letter today, Donohue points out a glaring irony: when then-candidate George W. Bush visited Bob Jones University and hobnobbed with its founder in 2000, John McCain himself was among the loudest critics:

In fact, when Bush did apologize for his visit to Bob Jones (he was explicit and forceful in his denunciation of the school), McCain criticized him for taking so long. He said, if ‘you don’t say anything until three weeks later, then you have—are—abandoning your role as a—as a person.’ Well, it hasn’t been three weeks since McCain has been apprised of his Hagee problem, but the clock is ticking.

The day after I accepted Bush’s apology on ‘The Today Show,’ February 28, 2000, McCain spokesman Dan McLagan said of Bush, ‘He should be forced to address it [the issue] everywhere he campaigns.’

Pass the collection plate popcorn.

Also at Cogitamus.

Understanding Campaign Strategy With The Underpants Gnomes

Dear Readers,

Please forgive my light blogging of late; I will be back with some smashing writing soon, I promise. In the meantime, I offer this explanation* of Ron's Underpants Gnomes comment at Nicholas's post, perhaps the best metaphor yet for the Clinton campaign strategy.

What about Phase Two?

*I realize there are at least a few of you out there who don't have teenaged sons and/or haven't watched South Park.

Also at Cogitamus.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Barack Obama on Teachers and Parents: Everyone Must Do His Part

Senator Obama discusses his plans for, and thoughts on, education.
Beaumont, Texas February 28, 2008

Via Andrew Sullivan

(H/T oddjob)

Also at Cogitamus.

Thinking of Sara

Yes, yes we do.

Go and show some bloggy love to Cogitamus contributor Sara Anderson, who is having brain surgery tomorrow, and who's in our thoughts and prayers today and onward. And if you can, toss a few bucks in the kitty (sorry!) to help defray travel expenses for her beloved Andy, who'll be at her side throughout.

The forces of good are with you, Sara!

Maybe That Last Ad Wasn't Clear Enough

It's now 3:02 am...

By the one and only Lee Stranahan, once again diving into the maelstrom of the mainstream and swimming upstream.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Et Tu, Frank? Et Tu?

Today's Frank Rich column had me shaking my head in amazement (emphasis mine):

BEFORE they were sidetracked into a new war against The New York Times, the Rush Limbaugh posse had it right about John McCain. He is a double agent. Some Democrats do admire and like him. So does Jon Stewart, and so do many liberal editorial boards and card-carrying hacks in the mainstream American press. So, in fact, do many at The Times, including myself. As long as I don’t look too hard at the fine print.

And in his concluding paragraph he says:

A few more “macaca” moments for the nearly all-white G.O.P. could spell its doom. Recognizing the backlash that has followed the racially tinged smears leveled at Mr. Obama so far, Mr. McCain wasted no time in publicly scolding the right-wing radio talk-show host who railed against Barack Hussein Obama at one of his rallies last week. Or perhaps, as those of us who like Mr. McCain want to believe, he is simply a man of honor: he knows that history will judge him exactingly on how he runs against America’s first black or female presidential nominee, win or lose.

Or perhaps, as those of us who are not gullible, Hero-supporting, Macho-Macho-Man-worshipping sheep with blindfolders surgically affixed to their skulls--as well as those of us whose paychecks do not sport the logo of any traditional media outlet--are able to see, Senator McCain is, in reality, a once-brave, once-admirable hero who long ago squandered his Honorable Man bona fides in favor of a relentless quest for the Good Life. Yet the usually level-headed Rich seems to think otherwise, and says, more than once, that he likes McCain. He also continues to think that he's honorable.


I guess Mr. Rich somehow missed all those accounts of lobbying and influence-peddling and Palm Beach parties followed by sweetheart letters to the FCC and soft money donations and, oh yeah, the de facto Lobbyists-R-Us office that's operating right on board the Straight Talk Express.

And bullshit-colored is the new black.

Also at Cogitamus.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

E is For Excellence

Darkblack and actor212 of Simply Left Behind have each awarded litbrit, the Blog, a sweet and tasty E for Excellence. Thank you, gentlemen--I'm honored! E's are great, with their three symbolic limbs and their warm, springy feel; E just happens to be one of my favorite flavors, too.*

But apparently I'm supposed to share. Hmmm...let's see. Like Darkblack, I could definitely point to my blogroll in toto; all the blogs therein are excellent--as well as exceptional, endearing, exciting, and extremely evolved.

But for the sake of brevity (I know, not my strong suit) I'll single out five choice and probably lesser-known blogs you really ought to visit soon. Today's E's, then, shall go to:

Two Glasses (Hi there, Joe and Tracy--See you next weekend!)
New York City Weboy
After Corbu

Mutant Poodle

Bravo, everyone, and long may you keep on keepin' on.

*Fellow synesthesiacs will know what the hell I'm talking about.

Friday Frank: Biography (A Day Late, and Worth the Wait)

Part One

Part Two

From the venerable A&E network, here's a lovely two-part FZ primer for your Saturday morning enjoyment and edification (hey, if Stephen can get away with doing Monday Miscellany on Tuesday, you'll cut me a little slack this week, right? I've got a sick eight-year-old--again!--and more laundry awaiting than I care to describe.)

Wishing you good health and a very Bon Weekend, everyone.

(H/T BobbyK99)

Also at Cogitamus.