Thursday, August 26, 2004


Although it's probably a sign of my advancing age that I think of George Will at all, I must admit that I've spent valuable time over the years trying to determine, to my own satisfaction, whether he was more pissant than nimrod, or vice versa.

Anyway, he's still out there. Anyone foolish enough to slog their way through alternate editions of Newsweek gets their just reward, The Last Word. (8/30/2004, p60)

This week, Will has his pea brain all excised because Colorado is considering changing their electoral vote distribution to a proportional, rather the current winner-take-all, distribution.

Will points out that if this Colorado change had been in effect in 2000, Al Gore would have been elected president.

You can see why he's upset.

The column is devoted to a combination history lesson and polemic (that's a new approach for Will, eh) explaining why the current system is wonderful and should not be tinkered with.

The twists and turns Will takes to justify this nonsense pile up like an overcooked bowl of cheap pasta. Clumpy and knotted, tasteless and indigestible. There's no pleasure in unraveling the mess.

In the last paragraph Will convolutes a scenario where Colorado's change would lead to John Kerry losing the election. He terms this poetic justice.

Yes, I can see that. In every election the Democratic candidate can get the most votes and the Republican would win the election. In Will's world that would be perfect, poetic.

Now I remember what he is. It wasn't a pissant or a nimrod. I'd say exactly what, but this is, afterall, a family blog.


How bad can the situation be in Iraq when CBS news breathlessly reports the arrival of The Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani in Najaf as a good thing. He will calm down al-Sadr. He will defuse the mess.

It was as if Ganhdi himself were coming back.

For the war in Iraq. Against the war in Iraq. Who would have predicted that it would come to this? (Well, actually, anyone with half a brain could have forseen big problems, but this is a little much.)

Maybe I have a long memory, but I usually don't associate the title Ayatollah with good things for the U.S.

Now, about five hours after the initial reports, The New York Times reports renewed violence with 40 dead and over 100 injured as the Ayatollah enters Najaf.

What a surprise.


Sep/Oct. - Oil prices continue to drop. Stock market rises in tandem with lower oil prices.

Nov.2 - Guess who is reelected.

Nov. 5-8 - An early cold snaps hits.

Nov 9,10,11,12 - Some bad things happen somewhere overseas.

Nov/Dec - Oil prices climb to historic highs.

Jan./Feb. - Millions of Democrats in the northeast US spend all of their disposable income on oil to heat their homes (i.e. to keep alive).

Jan./The forseeable future - Texas oilmen very happy. President's debt repaid, in spades.

The forseeable future continued:

1. In order to help ailing economy, President pushes through another tax cut. Critics claim it's written to only benefit oil billionaires. Critics dismissed as class warriors.

2. Jeb Bush gears up for run in '08.


Tuesday, August 17, 2004


Edward Hyde (Lord Cornbury)

He became Governor of New York and New Jersey from 1701 to 1708, in which position he earned a very foul repute. It is said that his character and conduct were equally abhorred in both hemispheres. He was prisoner for debt at the time of his father's death.

Cornbury came to be regarded in the historical literature as a moral profligate, sunk in corruption: possibly the worst governor Britain ever imposed on an American colony. The early accounts claim he took bribes and plundered the public treasury. Nineteenth century historian George Bancroft said that Cornbury illustrated the worst form of the English aristocracy's "arrogance, joined to intellectual imbecility".

Later historians characterize him as a "degenerate and pervert who is said to have spent half of his time dressed in women's clothes", a "fop and a wastrel". He is said to have delivered a "flowery panegyric on his wife's ears" after which he invited every gentleman present to feel precisely how shell-like they were; to have misappropriated £1500 meant for the defense of New York Harbor, and, scandalously, to have dressed in women's clothing and lurked "behind trees to pounce, shrieking with laughter, on his victims".

(Taken, out of context, from Wikipedia)


Thursday, August 12, 2004


Philadelphia Eagles second-year tight end L. J. Smith on himself:

"Really, the sky's the limit," Smith says. "But why set limits? I'm my own biggest critic, nobody is tougher on me than me, but I expect good things this season. I feel so much more comfortable in the offense than I did last year. I know what I'm doing now. It's a big difference. I don't have to think about every play and where I am supposed to be. I know what I'm supposed to do and I just go out and do it."

I assume this I ME MINE attitude is based on Smith's wonderful debut last year:

Smith's first NFL play is one he has tried hard to forget. You remember it, too.
Opening game, "Monday Night Football," Tampa Bay, a rematch of the NFC Championship Game, a fake field goal attempt in the first quarter.
Smith was open. Koy Detmer put the ball right there. And it fell to the ground.

(From The Times of Trenton 8/12/2004, pC7)


Tuesday, August 10, 2004


The drunk is looking for his keys.
"Did you drop them right here?"
"No, I dropped them over there."
"Then why are you looking here?"
"The light is better."

From Newsweek (8/9/2004, pg7.) - Days after 9/11, a senior Pentagon official lamented the lack of good targets in Afghanistan and proposed instead U.S. military attacks in South America and Southeast Asia as "a surprise to the terrorists."

It is not true, however, that Boulder police originally planned to arrest Keith Van Horn or Allen Iverson "as a surprise to Kobe Bryant" after Bryant was accused of rape.


Wednesday, August 04, 2004


I was a little bit surprised when I turned on the cable news yesterday and saw Tom "Show Me the Money" Ridge issuing a heightened terror alert for my sock drawer.

"These alerts aren't specific enough," I said to LZ. "I have two sock drawers, one for white socks and one for the colored. How am I supposed to act with such incomplete information?"

"The alert only applies to the colored sock drawer," intoned Tom Ridge.

"I wonder what I should do now," I said.

Dick Cheney was at the front door. "Remain vigilant, but go about your daily routine," he said.

"I'll try," I said. But the hallway was blocked by two cops in riot gear and a bomb sniffing dog. They finally let me pass after I showed them two forms of ID and allowed them to scan my feet.

However, when I got to the bedroom it too was guarded.

"It's a hot day," I said. "Maybe I'll just go sockless."

Mayor Bloomberg popped out of the laundry hamper. "Going sockless means the terrorists have won," he scolded. "Surely you're made of better stuff than that."

"I'll let you know," I said, and retreated to the kitchen.

LZ had brought in The New York Times. The warning was on the front page, above the fold.

"It says here," I said, "that the information was obtained from a pair of red and blue argyles which had actually been inside the drawer."

"Why, I threw them out years ago," LZ said. "I couldn't abide the sight of them. That information is dated. I don't think this terror alert is serious at all."

"Well," I said, "you can never be too careful. And don't you feel safer now, knowing that the government is right on top of these things?"

"Look," said LZ. "There's a helicopter landing in the driveway."


Monday, August 02, 2004


Here's a tip sure to improve reading comprehension:

Anytime a celebrity type person uses the phrase, "but I'm dyslexic" - just mentally substitute one of the following terms for dyslexic:

a lazy fuck / a total moron / an idiot / dumb as a post / too self-centered to read anything not about me

This adjustment is guaranteed to increase your understanding of the world.

Beneficial side effect: Many users report that this simple technique has made reading fun again.


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