Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Even I am not that much of a policy wonk

I'm wishing I had a copy of the whole article though.

Pirates and Emperors

As Jon, who sent me the link, says, it's Schoolhouse Rock for the 21st century (inspired by Chomsky, no less).

I know I resist change, but


Monday, February 27, 2006

The sort of story that makes my head explode

I can't even muster a commentary for this one. The leader from an AP story today:
Wal-Mart's chief executive told America's governors on Sunday that he needs their help to make health care more affordable and accessible for the retail giant's 1.3 million U.S. employees because the company can't do it alone.

Lee Scott said Wal-Mart's health care costs have risen 19 percent in each of the last three years and that it's only a matter of time before it, along with other businesses, cannot sustain rising costs.

"We know our benefits at Wal-Mart stores are not perfect," Scott told the National Governors Association. "Do we want more of our associates' kids on our health plans? Of course we do."
Later on in the story Scott talks about the bills passed in more than 20 states that require a certain percentage of payroll be paid on benefits saying, "I believe what we're seeing is a little too much politics." I really think people should just be summarily slapped across the face when they use the word "politics" to describe the motives or actions of anyone they disagree with. Greedy fucker.

So far, so good

I've recently adopted the colloquialism "so far, so good" from somewhere. So the other day I'm talking to my coworker about something and I say, "so far, so good" and she asks if I've ever seen the movie La Haine. From the movie:

Heard about the guy who fell off a skyscraper? On his way down past each floor, he kept saying to reassure himself: So far so good... so far so good... so far so good. How you fall doesn't matter. It's how you land!

Why I love my job

So there’s something wrong with our smoke alarm system, such that the smoke detector at the top of the stairs (adjacent to my office) emits a high pitched, highly annoying beeping noise at regular intervals. I just went downstairs to ask Tom about it. Tom is our comptroller but he also deals with physical plant stuff. He is old as dirt and one of the biggest curmudgeons I’ve ever met--as in, he can say "Bah humbug" and it sounds perfectly natural. He also adores me.

Me: Tom, at the top of the stairs…

Tom: Yes Travis. We know.

Me: It’s just that it’s annoying.

Tom: Yes Travis. We know.

Me: Do we have any idea of when it will be fixed?

Tom: The guy is coming out tomorrow.

Me: Well, thank god.

Tom: Of course, there’s no telling if he’ll be able to fix it tomorrow.

Me: Tom, it’s so fucking annoying.

Tom stares at me.

Me: It’s fucking annoying Tom!! I swear to you—I’m gonna blow my brains out if I have to work with that for much longer.

Tom: Oh Travis. You’re always saying that. One day I’m just going to bring you the gun.

Me: Sigh.

Tom: At least you should feel protected. If there’s a fire, you know it’s working.

Me: Okay, I’ll try to look at the bright side. You know that doesn’t come naturally to me.

Tom: You’re a jewel Travis.

Me, having not heard: Huh?

Tom: You’re just a jewel.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Why DVDs are so popular

People who know me know that one of the things I consider symptomatic of the decline of civilization in general is the fact that (at least in LA) people seem to think it's okay to get their cell phones in a movie theater. It's bad enough that there are these eerie blue glows from time to time in your peripheral vision as someone or another texts their friends, but then the stage whisper calls ("I'm in a movie. Can I call you back..."). For fuck's sake. Is it the pope or something? Are you the president? Jesus. Just turn the damn thing off for two hours.

But I love seeing movies on the big screen and I persist.

So last night, it's not a phone call. Oh no. Nothing so low key as that. I'm watching the Pink Panther (yeah, it was pretty lame) and there's this guy coughing. Not really coughing like a cough you might expect--coughing like wild animal noises coughing--I really shouldn't be out in public, code blue, here comes a chunk of my esophagus coughing. Outside of critical care units in hospital I don't know if I've ever heard such noises.

Call it a measure of the poorness of the movie or the fine-ness of the company, but rather than bugging me, it amused the hell out of me. In fact, my own laughter must have been at least as disruptive as the esophagus-cougher. I'm going to hell, I know (but I have connections down there, so I think I'll be alright.)

In honor of the South Dakota decision

I'm learning to shoot a gun on Saturday.

Yella says, "Any Jew who doesn't know how to shoot is living in denial of history," and with him on that. (As an aside, I just popped over there, and ran into the post linked to right there. Y and I are totally psychic blogging today.)

(Maybe I'll rent Badlands Sunday just to round out the experience.)

Friday advice blogging

Via yakcat--Penelope Dullaghan's advice project.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Pick of the week

First let me say, we are all benefiting from Andrea's jobless period. It's like having my own personal odd Internet feed. The best of this week's offerings by far is the series of cat paintings by Louis Wain, an illustrator who suffered from late-onset schizophrenia. Go look. I'm with Andrea on this one, I like them so much it makes me nervous too.

(And people wonder why I've ended up with so many off the charts crazy guys.)

For my sisters in South Dakota

From Popgadget comes the link to the Emergency Contraception website. The site is run by Princeton's Office of Population Research. Here's a blurb:
In many countries, but not the United States, emergency contraceptive pills ("morning after pills") are available from a pharmacy without a prescription. For the United States, we maintain a directory of providers who have informed our office that they are willing to provide information about and prescribe emergency contraceptives. We also maintain a directory of emergency contraceptive pills available in each country.
That's about as positive as I can be on the whole subject of reproductive rights today.

Fucking South Dakota

So my dad was from South Dakota. A strange thing for a Russian Jew, I know, but maybe it reminded his dad of Siberia or something. Something about the desolate cold. Today, of course, I am feeling nothing but grateful that my father moved from SD to DC.

Andrea, too, is feeling grateful as she turned down a job offer in Vermilion, South Dakota just recently. From her email to me: "Jews belong near a border. I have to keep reminding myself of that. And in the desert is also good for jews. Not Vermilion. Not lands named 'bad.' And definitely not where you have to open an abortion clinic in your own basement."

My dad used to say: I don't know if people live longer in the midwest or it just feels that way (with apologies to my Madison and Chi-town buddies out there).

Thursday nudist blogging

Hee hee hee!

We can rebuild them...

It seems that the first two US workers have had chips implanted transdermally so that they can be identified to enter the company's strong room. The Guardian has an editorial on the story (thank you Jeff).

Monbiot paints a fairly decent picture of the creeping machine of the state, but he's too optimistic by far when he says stuff like:
I don't believe that you or I or most comfortable, mentally competent people will be forced to wear a tag. But it will become an increasingly acceptable means of tracking and identifying people who could be a danger to themselves, or who could be at risk of sudden illness or disappearance, or who are otherwise hard for companies or governments to control. They will, on the whole, be people whose political voice is muted.
As I wrote in January when confronted with the security clusterfuck at Orlando airport, the fact is that enough people don't give a crap about their privacy and civil liberties that it gives them a toehold to press everyone else to get a chip or an eyeprint or whatever.

It's late and I'm too tired to say much more except--Could this be creepier?


Fuck, fuck, fuck. Fucking South Dakota.

Almost as good as the crazy cat lady

From Andrea comes news of the Super Mom action figure.
For sure a gift item for some of the folks I know.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The line of the month

From a conversation with Andrea tonight: "Well sure. I mean, you get vulnerable and then they rip your heart out like a tampon string."

God I love that girl.

But how do you really feel, Henry?

Call it nostalgia for my old hometown, but I've always had a soft spot for Henry Rollins (he's a DC boy, dontcha know). Conor sent me a story about Rollins getting reported to the Australian government for reading Jihad on a flight. It seems the man sitting next to him called a National Security hotline and reported Rollins as a potential terrorist threat. Rollins' journal entry about it is pretty funny. First of all, the government woman who wrote him was oddly wry about it:
I hope this finds you before you leave Australia as I think its something that won't surprise you but might give you a smile when you are sitting in a hotel room. I work in one of those Government areas that deals with anti terrorism matters. A fine service is provided but unfortunately we get to read a lot of things submitted by lunatics. The Australian Government set up the National Security Hotline to report terrorists.

The person who sat next to you on the flight from New Zealand does not agree with your politics or choice of reading and so nominated you as a possible threat. As they were too cowardly or stupid to leave their details I can'’t call them to discuss their idiocy with them.
Can you fathom getting such a letter in the US. And then there's Rollins' response to her:

I was reading a book called Jihad by Ahmed Rashid which is a history of Central Asia. I didn't speak to the man next to me past how do you do. I think Ahmed Rashid is published by Yale University Press. Bush's alma mater. Please tell your government and everyone in your office to go fuck themselves. Tell them twice. If your boss is looking for something to do, you can tell him I suggest he go fuck himself. Baghdad's safer than my hometown and your PM is a sissy. You have a nice night.
I mean, I would say, "Henry, lighten up," but then, he wouldn't be Henry Rollins would he?

A is for AMY who fell down some stairs

I've been the laziest blogger even as the news has been poring in faster than a motivated one could post it. There was that workgroup meeting last week and then the three-day weekend. But here I am. I hope to get some time today to post a "don't let the door hit you in the ass" comment about Lawrence Summers (among other things), but in the meantime, let me just wish everyone a happy Edward Gorey's birthday.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

What doesn't kill us, makes us stronger

I'm in the middle of another one of those three-day workgroup meetings. Day one down; two to go. I have that vise-like head feeling.

Not enough sleep, too much coffee, too much thinking. I feel jet lagged but without the benefit of a trip.

All of which is to say, if one of my friends sends me something fun, I'll blog it; otherwise, you're getting bupkis from me until the onslaught of work lets up.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Regret is for pussies

From the Daily Show (via Colin via WSJ):
Jon Stewart: "I'm joined now by our own vice-presidential firearms mishap analyst, Rob Corddry. Rob, obviously a very unfortunate situation. How is the vice president handling it?

Rob Corddry: "Jon, tonight the vice president is standing by his decision to shoot Harry Wittington. According to the best intelligence available, there were quail hidden in the brush. Everyone believed at the time there were quail in the brush.

"And while the quail turned out to be a 78-year-old man, even knowing that today, Mr. Cheney insists he still would have shot Mr. Whittington in the face. He believes the world is a better place for his spreading buckshot throughout the entire region of Mr. Whittington's face."

Jon Stewart: "But why, Rob? If he had known Mr. Whittington was not a bird, why would he still have shot him?"

Rob Corddry: "Jon, in a post-9-11 world, the American people expect their leaders to be decisive. To not have shot his friend in the face would have sent a message to the quail that America is weak."

Jon Stewart: "That's horrible."

Rob Corddry: "Look, the mere fact that we're even talking about how the vice president drives up with his rich friends in cars to shoot farm-raised wingless quail-tards is letting the quail know 'how' we're hunting them. I'm sure right now those birds are laughing at us in that little 'covey' of theirs.

Jon Stewart: "I'm not sure birds can laugh, Rob."

Rob Corddry: "Well, whatever it is they do … coo .. they're cooing at us right now, Jon, because here we are talking openly about our plans to hunt them. Jig is up. Quails one, America zero.

Jon Stewart: "Okay, well, on a purely human level, is the vice president at least sorry?"

Rob Corddry: "Jon, what difference does it make? The bullets are already in this man's face. Let's move forward across party lines as a people … to get him some sort of mask."

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Hearts are trump

Happy Valentine's Day everybody. Perhaps appropriately enough I feel pretty queasy this morning. Something I ate for sure. Pho? Chicken shwarma? Yesterday much as I wanted to join the Cheney roast festival, stupid Blogger wouldn't let me post. Today promises to be a ridiculously busy day (I am in another of those three-day meetings Thursday, Friday, Saturday), but...if I post nothing else today, I must post zefrank's valentine, which is the best valentine ever.

(Picture courtesy of toothpaste for dinner.)

Friday, February 10, 2006

The four steve rules of life

In the course of an email exchange with my dear friend and mentor Steve, he referred to one of the "four Steve rules of life" and so I asked him about the others. They're so good I have to share them. I leave you with this for the weekend. I will blog later about the rampant buck passing that's going around the administration like a bad flu. In the meantime, here is some of Steve's wisdom, excerpted from his email to me:

Rule 1 is that life is a forever process of revising our expectations.

Rule 2 is the "economic" rule, i.e. put in more than you take out, whether it is the bank, relationships, or whatever.

Rule 3 is the root of all our problems is sexual in nature.

There is a Rule 4 and it concerns a Greater Power, but for the life of me I cannot remember it exactly. These 4 Steve Rules of Life were an obsession of mine about 18 or 19 years ago and the first 3 have been so much fun, but the 4th was more philosophical and I can'’t recall how it goes exactly. Damned spiritual stuff!!

Venezuela anyone?

You know I remember being so cheered by Vaclav Havel's presidency--that there was a statesman who was famous for his literary efforts and his articulate intelligence. Now I am loving Hugo Chavez just as much but because he's such a guns-a-blazing rhetor. Shane forwarded me his latest in which he slams Blair and Bush for their fascist cowboy foreign policy. Blair needs to return the Falklands, he says, and "Hitler Danger Bush Hitler" is just a nutjob:
"Now there's a nut case up there in the presidency of the United States," Chavez said. "He's dangerous to the world because he's capable of dropping nuclear bombs.

"Now they're making plans to invade Iran and Venezuela as well. He's crazy, the North Americans themselves are going to have to tie him up because he is capable of destroying half the world and destroying his own country."
So maybe we don't run away to Canada after all. Maybe Venezuela? I'm sure some of my friends will help me with some rudimentary Spanish.

Okay I lied

Here's another V-day special. This one goes out to the Kimma (thanks to Conor for the link).

Valentine's Day treat

I'm hoping I'll have the self control to refrain from mentioning the "holiday" again here, but in any case, in celebration of love, I bring you video karaoke. A very good forward for you boy cupid victims. I can't imagine anyone who wouldn't be charmed by the sentiment. (Thanks to Annette for the link.)

Slash and burn budgeting

Will left the link for the 91 programs Bush wants to kill and, as an added bonus, AP also lists the 50 he merely wants to eviscerate. (It's alright ma--I'm only bleeding.)

Thursday, February 09, 2006

It just occurred to me...

...while reading over at Alternate Brain, that this latest "curses foiled again" report of Bush and his minions prevailing over the forces of darkness and saving my fair city is actually such a plot line right out of Get Smart that it's a bit frightening. Exploding shoes indeed. Next thing you'll be telling me that mailbox over there is actually a Homeland Security agent in disguise.

Winners and losers

Agencies whose funding will increase in the proposed 2007 budget:
Homeland Security
State and Other International Programs
Veterans Affairs
Judicial Branch
Legislative Branch
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
National Science Foundation
Social Security Administration
Other Agencies
Agencies whose funding will decrease in the proposed 2007 budget:
Health and Human Services
Housing and Urban Development
Corps of Engineers
Environmental Protection Agency
Executive Office of the President
Does anyone know where I can find a list of the 91 (yes, 91) programs that are on the chopping block to be eliminated?

Goebbels goes digital

Part of the sell job on why we need to eliminate 91 programs to support our unwinnable war against terror is a new federal government website that lists programs that are performing well and poorly. It's completely fucking sinister.

Head start? HUD assistance to poor people? Perkins loans? Amtrak assistance? Healthy community access program? All ineffective.

Defense research? Nuclear physics programs? Terrorist interdiction program? Secret Service protective intelligence? All performing effectively.

You get the idea.

The budget makes me want to set myself on fire. It really does. I'm just going to sit here in my office listening to Killing Joke full blast on my headphones until we get a new administration.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Quote of the day

From the CSM article noted below on the "Deficit Reduction Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 2005":
"There's a fairness issue here," says Isabel Sawhill, a senior fellow in economics at the Brookings Institution. "We're basically cutting programs that serve low-income families and the middle class in order to pay for tax cuts that go overwhelmingly to the very wealthy. Even some Republicans have been uncomfortable with that."
Wow. Even some Republicans.

Humpday outrage round up

It's another busy day here at work. No time for much articulate analysis, but here's a brief summary of excerpts from today's news articles:

From the NYT (thank you Will):
George C. Deutsch, the young presidential appointee at NASA who told public affairs workers to limit reporters' access to a top climate scientist and told a Web designer to add the word "theory" at every mention of the Big Bang, resigned yesterday, agency officials said.

Mr. Deutsch's resignation came on the same day that officials at Texas A&M University confirmed that he did not graduate from there, as his résumé on file at the agency asserted.
From WaPo:

Rep. John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), who was elected House majority leader last week, is renting his Capitol Hill apartment from a veteran lobbyist whose clients have direct stakes in legislation Boehner has co-written and that he has overseen as chairman of the Education and the Workforce Committee.
From AP:

Five months after Katrina plunged New Orleans into darkness, roughly 124,000 homes and businesses--or more than 66 percent of the city's structures--still have no electricity, according to the utility, Entergy New Orleans.
And from The CS Monitor:

With President Bush's signature Wednesday, Medicaid recipients can expect higher copayments and deductibles. College students may face higher interest rates on student loans, as lenders are squeezed. Work requirements for women on welfare are likely to be tightened. Federal aid to states for child-support enforcement will be curtailed.
I'll say more, particularly on this last item, if I have time today. For now, I'll just say, there aren't enough hours in the day for the outrage. If you're not angry, you really aren't paying attention.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006



And on that note

CNN is reporting on the eviction of thousands of Katrina victims from hotel rooms in Texas:
In Houston, where 4,000 evacuees were staying in hotels, around 80 percent had received permission to extend their stays until at least next Monday. The remaining 20 percent either failed to contact FEMA or made other housing arrangements, said Frank Michel, a spokesman for Mayor Bill White.

"People need to begin to take responsibility for themselves," Michel said.

Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco complained that FEMA was pulling the plug on the hotel program before securing other housing.
Taking responsibility for themselves? The article quotes FEMA as complaining that they went door-to-door to find people and some of them avoided talking to FEMA workers, even going so far as to run away. Fancy that. This apparently, is the "not taking responsibility" part--these victims didn't engage in whatever Kafka-esque process they needed to engage in to get awarded six more days or so before becoming homeless.

Fucking pathetic

The mayor of New Orleans is looking to France and Jordan (among other countries perhaps) for aid to rebuild the city. It may well be a (smart) publicity stunt on his part, but hey, I'll take the bait and just add to the chorus of WTF is wrong with our government?? Reuters reports:
French Transport Minister Dominique Perben, leading the French delegation to a city that was founded by France in 1718, said, "This catastrophe has deeply upset the French people and the French government."

France, Perben said through a translator, "wants to be a long-term partner for Louisiana and New Orleans."
It's absolutely ridiculous that it should come to this for N.O. We're returning to colonization as a method for domestic recovery. But now we have Ebay! Maybe we can auction off the French Quarter or something. Sick.

How the west was won

I finally saw Brokeback Mountain last night. I was really blown away by it. I think it surpasses Me, You and Everyone We Know as my favorite film of the year. It was lyrical in the way that Raymond Carver can be at his best--saying so much with so few words--giving voice to the mute repression in rural and working America. J, P, and I bawled like little babies in the movie theater and I cried again today thinking about that conversation between Jack's wife and Ennis--when she purses her lips and her eyes well up a little or that scene between Jack and Ennis when Ennis says, "If you can't fix it, you gotta stand it."


Monday, February 06, 2006

The book!

Had I known, my Hannukah shopping would have been sewed up. Bar Mitzvah Disco, the book, is out. We have blogged about the site before and, with the publication of the book, the site is only a shadow of its former self now. Nonetheless, I did laugh out loud yet again.

Being a vegetarian in Kalamazoo

Yesterday we ordered lunch from the conference hotel in the interests of saving time. Mark and I ordered personal pan pizzas.

Waitress: Are any of these your pizzas?
Me and Marc: Well, that depends what's on them.
Waitress: What did you order?
Me: Olives, mushrooms, and pepperoni.
Marc: Olives, onions, and bell peppers.
Waitress: Hmm. I'm not sure what's on these.

She disappears with the pizzas.
10 minutes passes.

Waitress: Okay, what about these--are these two yours?
Me: Well, that depends what's on them.
Waitress: I'm not sure what's on them.
Me: Well, I ordered olives, mushrooms, and pepperoni.
Marc: I ordered olives, onions, and bell peppers, but I'll eat anything that doesn't have meat on it.
Waitress: Let me see. Let me find out what's on these.

10 minutes passes.

Waitress, returning with two pizzas: This one has pepperoni and something...
Me: I'll take that one.
Waitress: And this one has ham...
Marc: That's not mine.
Me: He'll take anything as long as it doesn't have meat on it.

10 minutes passes.

Waitress, returning with a pizza: This one has pepperoni...
Marc: No, I ordered one with no meat.
Waitress: So this one isn't yours.
Marc: No. I don't eat meat.

10 minutes passes.

Waitress: This one has olives and pepperoni.
Marc: No. I don't eat meat.
Long pause
Waitress: We may just have to make you a vegetarian one.
Marc: That would be fine.

Friday, February 03, 2006

It could be worse--it could be raining

Oh. It is raining. Right.

I made it to Kalamazoo. My luggage, however, loved Chi-town so much it decided to spend the night in O'Hare. And I got my period on the plane. The materials for the all day workshop that begins at 9:00am tomorrow (as well as my tampons) are in my Chicago-dwelling bag.

And there are two large busloads of church youth group creatures staying at this hotel.

Really though, it really could be worse. Why, not too long ago on a work trip my "little visitor" came in the middle of my facilitating a session, an event for which I was completely unprepared, which meant I had to find a sympathetic woman attendee and send her on a mission of mercy to the pharmacy.

You see--we really shouldn't be president--we women. (Joking!!)

And one more thing--You know you're back in the midwest when grownups are ordering milk during beverage service on the plane. (The airline guy said "you betcha!" to me tonight.)

Okay, I have to be up early tomorrow to facilitate a meeting all day with mms (mid-menstrual syndrome) and no materials. Have a great weekend all.

(P.S. Blogger's spell check doesn't recognize "tampons." Um--hel-lo? What's up with that?)

Thursday, February 02, 2006

The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars...

On a completely random note, Venus goes out of retrograde tomorrow, and I for one, am relieved. According to my stars, it seems next month is just going to be fan-fucking-tastic for me. And I say--Bring it!

As Venus is moving out of retrograde, I will be on the move to Kalamazoo for the weekend. And any city that sounds so much like a Dr. Suess invention can't be all bad. I'll be traveling all day tomorrow and in a conference room the day after that. If I can, I'll blog something from the heartland--a limerick or something.

Meet the new boss...

So the new House majority leader is more of the same. AP reports that he refused to return 30,000 in donations from American Indian tribes Abramoff represented. He's accepted all kinds of money and goodies from Sallie Mae while they were lobbying the committee he chairs (the House Education and the Workforce Committee) and so on.

But we here in the blogosphere are just a mite tired of outrage today. Are we protesting? No--we're giggling.

Because really, how can you not have a Beavis and Butthead moment when you're reading an article titled "Boehner Is Old Hand in House Battles" that has lines like "Last month, Boehner--pronounced BAY'-nur--refused to return some $30,000..."

Baynur. Hee hee. They said Baynur.

One more from the voice

Best albums of 2005--The Voice's Pazz&Jop Critics' Poll. An interesting selection to be sure. I just bought tickets to see Art Brut (#23) next month. When we saw them last month at the Echo, I said to Portia, this is one of those bands that you think to yourself someday you might say, "Gosh I saw them at this little club with not such a big crowd when they were still unknown." (As an aside, we also tried to get tickets for the Arctic Monkeys, but because KROQ has picked up one of their singles, the show was, in fact, sold out. As much as I think Art Brut deserves to be recognized, I do hope that KROQ doesn't ruin them. I hate to go to a show populated by drunk frat boys and bleached blondes with Hello Kitty gear on.)

I love these

The next time I am in New York, I am absolutely going to Fabulous Fanny's. What a great idea. Of course my vintage frames cost $3.00 at St. Vinny's but (as I'm fond of saying lately) that's just because I'm really punk rock.


Reading James Ridgeway's piece today on why the government won't release the Katrina documents, I started to rethink the whole notion that this is a government run by crooks and liars. Ridgeway argues that the papers will reveal what everyone knows (I mean really knows, not tinfoil hat "knows"), that the feds knew Katrina was coming but didn't want to interrupt their golf games to do anything about it. Halliburton; Kellogg, Brown & Root; and Fluor, all big contributors to The Party are profiting handsomely:
The long and the short of it is that Katrina, like Iraq, has been a cash cow for Bush's entrepreneur buddies. Congress has approved $62.3 billion for Katrina relief efforts so far. And that's only the beginning.
And this is where I had the realization that Bush's whole strategy seems to be to welcome or cause chaos--start a war, don't do anything about an impending natural disaster, and so on--and then divvy up the mop-up spoils. It's like a weird chaos-induced WPA for people who are already stinking rich. Which brings me to my epiphany: This is not a government by thieves and liars; it's a government by janitors.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

It's official

Punk is dead.

W's legacy

Those of us who hate him may find it easy to look past his contributions, but Bush has made inroads few other presidents would have been capable of. Thanks to E and S for the reminder.

More on the movies

Tom Cruise has finally been nominated for an award he deserves.

For those whose constitution was too weak to watch

Democrappy, one of the more intelligent, well written blogs out there, has a readable and reasonable recap of the SOTU address, including gems like this:

On the ticklish question of Hamas, he stated, "The Palestinian people have voted," and now Hamas must renounce violence, affirm Israel's right to exist, disarm, and cease terrorist activities. In other words, it was good that the Palestinians voted, and we respect that they voted for Hamas instead of Fatah--the only thing we require is that Hamas immediately and unilaterally transform itself into Fatah.
I really would rather read Matt's analysis than suffer through it myself; though I admit I'm sorry I missed the Dems' standing ovation in response to W's social security lead in, "Congress did not act last year on my proposal to save Social Security..."