Thursday, January 31, 2008

On the subject of humor, check out "Mr. Fish"

While I'm on the subject of humor, check out Mr. Fish. I'm a big fan of good political - and other - humor, and am always on the lookout for new artists. Some are good, like Stephen Pitt, whom I posted a while ago, and some are not so good. I discovered this guy while reading Harpers Magazine, and like his acerbic wit. Stay tuned for other artists in the future.

Dwayne Booth (Mr. Fish) is a regular cartoon contributor to the print edition of the LA Weekly, and he also maintains Catch of the Day, a daily cartoon blog for the Weekly's website. Also for the Weekly, Dwayne has contributed a number of written features and he created The Reel World, a series of animated shorts.
Dwayne is a weekly cartoonist for Harpers.org, and a featured cartoonist in Daryl Cagle's cartoon archive at MSNBC.com. Dwayne's cartoons are also included in three books put out by Cagle: The BIG Book of Bush Cartoons, The Best Political Cartoons of the Year, 2006, and The Best Political Cartoons of the Year, 2007.
Dwayne also appears occasionally in Current, the Sunday Opinion section of the Los Angeles Times and is also a regular for the Webby award-winning news magazine Truthdig.
Click here: clowncrack.com



Thinking Problem

Sometimes, in the face of disappointment, all you can do is try to spin a little humor, and pick up a new ride. This post from a friend is funny, but it's not the ride I'm looking for right now.

THINKING PROBLEM: It started out innocently enough. I began to think at parties now and then -- just to loosen up. Inevitably, though, one thought led to another, and soon I was more than just a social thinker. I began to think alone -- "to relax," I told myself -- but I knew it wasn't true. Thinking became more and more important to me, and finally I was thinking all the time.
That was when things began to sour at home. One evening I turned off the TV and asked my wife about the meaning of life. She spent that night at her mother's. I began to think on the job. I knew that thinking and employment don't mix, but I couldn't help myself.
I began to avoid friends at lunchtime so I could read Thoreau, Muir, Confucius and Kafka. I would return to the office dizzied and confused, asking, "What is it exactly we are doing here?"
One day the boss called me in. He said, "Listen, I like you, and it hurts me to say this, but your thinking has become a real problem. If you don't stop thinking on the job, you'll have to find another job."
This gave me a lot to think about. I came home early after my conversation with the boss. "Honey," I confess, "I've been thinking..."
"I know you've been thinking," she said, "and I want a divorce!"
"But Honey, surely it's not that serious."
"It is serious," she said, lower lip aquiver. "You think as much as college professors and college professors don't make any money, so if you keep on thinking, we won't have any money!"
"That's a faulty syllogism," I said impatiently.
She exploded in tears of rage and frustration, but I was in no mood to deal with the emotional drama.
"I'm going to the library," I snarled as I stomped out the door.
I headed for the library, in the mood for some Nietzsche. I roared into the parking lot with NPR on the radio and ran up to the big glass doors. They didn't open. The library was closed.
To this day, I believe that a Higher Power was looking out for me that night. Leaning on the unfeeling glass, whimpering for Zarathustra, a poster caught my eye, "Friend, is heavy thinking ruining your life?" it asked.
You probably recognize that line. It comes from the standard Thinkers Anonymous poster.
This is why I am what I am today: a recovering thinker. I never miss a TA meeting. At each meeting we watch a non-educational video; last week it was "Porky's." Then we share experiences about how we avoided thinking since the last meeting.
I still have my job, and things are a lot better at home. Life just seemed...easier, somehow, as soon as I stopped thinking. I think the road to recovery is nearly complete for me.
AND.................. Today I took the final step............ I joined the Republican Party.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

There was John Edwards, and there's the rest . . .


Now all we have left are Tweedledee, Tweedledum, Daddy Warbucks and the Mad Hatter. One thing is for sure, though, any Democrat is better than any Republican. And that, naturally, raises the next question. Is there anyone out there who's a better choice than Tweedledee or Tweedledum?

John Edwards and the Art of Losing Well


John Edwards and the art of losing well
With John Edwards withdrawing from the race, I think it’s important to take note of something sort of extraordinary: he’s leaving with his reputation not only intact, but actually enhanced.
When you think about it that almost never happens. Today, we tend to be a one shot society politically — hell, in every respect, really. But sticking with politics, look at the tattered bodies scattered across the field of honor: Rudy Giuliani, Fred Thompson, John Kerry, Bob Dole, Joe Lieberman (please try not to cry for poor Joe), Michael Dukakis and so many more. All were once serious presidential candidates, people given a real chance of winning, and all suffered damage to their public reputations, in some cases severe damage, as a result of running for and losing the presidency.
But not so John Edwards. Edwards leaves the race, if anything, more highly regarded by the Democratic rank and file than he was before. He remains a viable political figure.
Why? It’s about running and also losing with grace, I think. It’s about running on the side of the poor and the working class, instead of just trying to pile up huge mounds of cash from special interests. It’s about running on issues that matter, rather than personalities and negative imagery.
John Edwards may never be president, but by conducting his campaign with honor he’s left both the Democratic Party and the nation at least a little better off for his having tried.
Thank you, John. We here at The Last Chance Democracy Café wish you and your family the very best.
Click here: The Last Chance Democracy Cafe » Blog Archive » John Edwards and the art of losing well

New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina

Though I didn't catch Dim Son's SOTU the other night, I couldn't help but notice all the babble in the news yesterday. Living in Louisiana, in a New Orleans burb, one thing appeared hopeful - the announcement that the North American Summit of Canada, Mexico and the United States will be held in New Orleans in April. If true, then NOLA could certainly use the $$$ it would bring.
On the other hand, the announcement could have been just another Jackson Square moment. You remember that, don't you? Dim Son's handlers brought in tons of lighting equipment to light up Jackson Square in the New Orleans French Quarter. Wearing his blue shirt with rolled up sleeves, he gave his "we'll save New Orleans because it's a great party town" speech. Then they turned off the lights and removed the equipment, sending the French Quarter back into total darkness. And that was that. Promises, promises, promises . . .



Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Just Plain Disappointing

To be kind, this is just plain disappointing. Mother Pelosi must have put her foot down.

Kucinich postpones Bush impeachment effort
Tuesday January 29, 2008 11:51 am
After promising to mark President Bush's final State of the Union speech by introducing articles of impeachment against Bush, Cleveland Democratic Rep. Dennis Kucinich postponed the effort.
Kucinich said Monday that he met with members of the House Judiciary Committee after making last week's impeachment pledge. He said he came away "hopeful there will be an inquiry by the Judiciary Committee."
"I will give them the opportunity to proceed before introducing articles of impeachment," he said in a statement. The committee's spokeswoman did not respond to requests for comment.
Click here: Firedoglake - Firedoglake weblog » Kucinich postpones Bush impeachment effort

I Couldn't Do It


I couldn't do it, I just couldn't bring myself to do it - watch Der Dear Leader's SOTU last night, that is. There was really no reason to watch. After listening to 7 years of mendacious shameless blathering from Dim Son and his toadies, what new was there to hear. Instead, I spent the evening listening to some old Townes Van Zandt, Blaze Foley, and Lucinda Williams goodies, amid fantasies of hanging out at the Austin Outhouse in the 1980s. "If I Could Only Fly . . . "

Perhaps if Dim Son had spent a little more time listening to those good folks, smoking some Texas weed and letting up on the Jim Beam, we might not be in this pie-eyed mess today.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Stephen Pitt Cartoons


While waiting for the rest of the events of the day to unfold, here is a little something you might enjoy exploring. Stephen Pitt has some of the very best political art work around. He has a clear message and a cutting sense of humor, and I've sent some of his images out before. And, if you're so inclined, the images make great wallpapers or a slide-show screensaver for 'puters.

" . . . . . There is a battle under way that will determine the economic and social formulas for the new millenium. Much blood has flowed at the hands of those whose nature it is to kill rather than negotiate into place, those formulae. The following images are my collective response to that reality. Their delivery is couched in the search for control of the elements of contrast."

Monday Morning Sunshine

It's Monday again, and despite the somewhat gloomy weekend, there are some things to look forward to today. To begin, despite his loss in South Carolina, John Edwards is fighting on in his quest for the Democratic nomination. This in from MSNBC:

COLUMBIA, SC -- For those who haven’t heard: John Edwards is not dropping out tonight.
Following a litany of people whose voices he said would be heard in his campaign, the South Carolina native said, "Finally, if you’re one of the millions of Americans who have yet to cast your vote in this democratic process, beginning on Feb. 5 and moving beyond, your voice will be heard and we will be there with you every single step of the way." “We get to continue running for president until we decide we’re not running for president."
Click here: Edwards fights on - First Read - msnbc.com

Then there is the State of the Union address by Der Dear Leader to look forward to tonight.
This in from Scarecrow at Firedoglake.com:

"Tonight George Bush will go before Congress to deliver the President’s annual State of the Union speech, one of the few Constitutional requirements Bush still follows. In his address he will continue the tradition of virtually all Presidents, declaring, perhaps with some evasive caveat, that the state of the union is good. It will be just another lie for the man whose administration has practiced unparalleled mendacity.
Today he will bully Congress to give up our 4th Amendment rights, as he has done relentlessly for seven years. This President has trashed the Constitution and made a mockery of his oath. He has ignored and humiliated the Congress, whose submissive behavior in the face of the Administration’s vast lawlessness has become a national embarrassment. He has turned the executive branch into an extension of a rapacious party, and so corrupted the administration of justice that Americans no longer have confidence that the rule of law will be honored at the highest levels of government. His judicial appointments, ratified by a foolish Congress, have saddled the nation with judges that will be barriers to equality, justice and fairness for decades.
Click here: Firedoglake - Firedoglake weblog » The State of Our Union (read on . . . )

And finally for now, watch for this to happen today. Dennis Kucinich, now former candidate, and perhaps the most clearly defined populist in these United States, will once more move to impeach. Despite Mother Nancy's scolding, Dennis will "party on" today. This comment in from CommonDreams.org:

Kucinich Starts New Impeachment Drive by David M. Herszenhorn
Representative Dennis J. Kucinich of Ohio may get excluded from Democratic presidential debates, as he has been recently, but no one can deny him the floor in the House. And today Mr. Kucinich took to the floor to fire off his latest salvo at the Bush administration: his plans to introduce Articles of Impeachment against President Bush on Jan. 28 - the day of Mr. Bush’s State of the Union speech.
Accusing the administration of lying about the need for the war in Iraq, Mr. Kucinich said he did not need to hear the president’s assessment. “We know the State of the Union,” he declared. “It’s a lie.”
He also fired a volley at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California who has maintained that impeaching Mr. Bush is not on the table for Congressional Democrats. “If impeachment is off the table,” Mr. Kucinich said, “truth is off the table. If truth is off the table then this body is living a lie.”
Click here: Kucinich Starts New Impeachment Drive - CommonDreams.org

So, all in all it might just be a really good day. And the sun is shining in Mandeville.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

A Few Words from Huey Long

Huey P. Long was elected governor of Louisiana in 1928, was then elected to the United States Senate, and was assassinated in the lobby of the Louisiana State Capital in 1935. Many recall him as "The Kingfish", and to this day characterize him as a crazed despot. Perhaps he was in many ways. But those who demonize his memory ignore his underlying belief in the right of every person to a decent life. His credo was "Every Man A King". And in 1933, he wrote and self-published an autobiography with that title. It wasn't a great seller, only a thousand or so copies, but there was truth in it. This passage rings as true today as it did in 1933.

"I had come to the United States Senate with only one project in mind, which was that by every means of action and persuasion I might do something to spread the wealth of the land among all of the people. I foresaw the depression in 1929. . . I had predicted all of the consequences many years before they occurred.
The wealth of the land was being tied up in the hands of a very few men. The people were not buying because they had nothing with which to buy. The big business interests were not selling, because there was nobody they could sell to.
One per cent of the people could not eat any more than any other one per cent; they could not wear much more than any other one per cent; they could not live in any more houses than any other one per cent. So, in 1929, when the fortune-holders of America grew powerful enough that one per cent of the people owned nearly everything, ninety-nine per cent of the people owned practically nothing, not even enough to pay their debts, a collapse was at hand.
-----
There is no rule so sure as that one that the same mill that grinds out fortunes above a certain size at the top, grinds out paupers at the bottom. The same machine makes them both; and how are they made? There is so much in the world, just so much land, so many houses, so much to eat and so much to wear. There is enough--yea, there is more--than the entire human race can consume, if all are reasonable.
All the people in America cannot eat up the food that is produced in America; all the people in America cannot wear out the clothes that can be made in America; nor can all of the people in America occupy the houses that stand in this country, if all are allowed to share in homes afforded by the nation. But when one man must have more houses to live in than ninety-nine other people; when one man decides he must own more foodstuff than any other ninety-nine people own; when one man decides he must have more goods to wear for himself and family than any other ninety-nine people, then the condition results that instead of one hundred people sharing the things that are on earth for one hundred people, that one man, through his gluttonous greed, takes over ninety-nine parts for himself and leaves one part for the ninety-nine.
Now what can this one man do with what is intended for ninety-nine? He cannot eat the food that is intended for ninety-nine people; he cannot wear the clothes that are intended for ninety-nine people; he cannot live in ninety-nine houses at the same time; but like the dog in the manger, he can put himself on the load of hay and he can say:
'This food and these clothes and these houses are mine, and while I cannot use them, my greed can only be satisfied by keeping anybody else from having them.'
Wherefore and whence developed the strife in the land of too much, beginning in the year 1929."
(Every Man A King, Huey P. Long, 1933, pgs. 291-292)

Sad Day in South Carolina

Yesterday was indeed a sad day in South Carolina, as Barack Obama literally ran away with the Democratic Primary, leaving poor Hillary in his wake, and John Edwards in the dust. If Obama ultimately gets the nomination, I will certainly support him because after 8 long years of Bushit in the Whitehouse, any Democrat will hopefully bring a renewed hope in the American Dream.

My disappointment is not so much that Obama won, but that John Edwards has been, and continues to be so overlooked as the best possible chance for the renewal of the populism of that American Dream. The Corporate Media has truly decided that the Democrats must choose only between Obama and Clinton, and have done everything possible to narrow the decision to those two candidates alone. John Edwards, the only true voice for the common folk of this country has been marginalized because of the threat he poses to corporate interests, particularly the media conglomerate interests.

Wonchahepme will continue to support John Edwards for President of these United States until he and he alone says "enough". Hopefully that will not happen.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Worst Case Scenerio

The "Political Season" is awash with vermin, on both sides of the Isle. And now that Dennis Kucinich has withdrawn to pursue his case for the impeachment of "The Big Dick C", the only remaining hope for the salvation of America is Senator John Edwards. Unfortunately, the MSM and "kingmakers" have decided to foster a hyper-battle between "The" Clintons and Obama, because of the marketing value.

So I have a worst case scenerio theory . . .

The GOPer-biased corporate media continues to increase ratings by stirring it up between Hillary and Barack, and neglects and/or denigrates John Edwards, so that either Hillary or Barack becomes the Democratic nominee. Joe Anybody gets the VP nod.

The GOPer-biased corporate media and GOPer "kingmakers" settle on John McCain -obviously because he's the oldest and most likely to die in office - with the clear understanding that he names heir apparent Jeb Bush as his running mate for VP.

The GOPer-biased corporate media, along with Karl Rove, the ghost of Lee Atwater, Swift-Boaters, Wingnut Bloggers, etc, unleash the dogs of hell with all the racist, misogynistic, xenophobic, jingoistic, hate slime and vote rigging they can muster, making 2000 and 2004 seem like a fairy tale; and, after a prolonged legal battle, the Supreme Court again sides with the GOPer-biased corporate media and GOPer "kingmakers", declaring McCain/Bush the winners with 750,000 fewer votes than the Democrats. The American public gets goosed again.

After January 2009, VP Jeb Bush assumes control of all day-to-day operations and policy decisions of the Whitehouse, directing President McCain to maintain in office all personnel from the previous George Bush II administration, with a few exceptions. Rudy Guiliani is to be Czar of Homeland Security, John Bolton is to be Secretary of State, and Paul Wolfowitz is to be Secretary of Defense (though now renamed Secretary of World Wars Three and Counting). Condi is given a Chevron franchise and retires to Birmingham, Alabama; and Mike Huckabee finally returns to Ozark Baptist Seminary for his theology degree.

After two years in semi-seclusion, McCain dies from Vietnam Era head wounds, Jeb Bush becomes president, and goes on to become the third Bush war president by invading Sudan and capturing its vast oil reserves. Both of his children are sent to rehab for severe drug addiction. George Bush the Younger has a terrible chain saw accident. Barbara the Younger spends the remainder of her years caring for Laura the Lush