Friday, March 23, 2012

Whores and gangsters

Here's a good story about whores and gangsters posted today.  Many are more interesting than politicians and no worse. 

Crazy days and nights. Really.

I'm worn out by politics for the moment anyway. Can't stand the Anderson Cooper political panels. Gergen is worse than a glass of warm milk. It is only interesting to watch is his creative sliding in his conservative talking points under cover of being the wise old voice of reason. Erick Erickson is a robot, held erect by a steel rod going through his skull and out his  ass. Worst of all is Ari Fleischer. Unbearable to watch. Relentless at getting his talking points across. Can't stand, also, Cooper's beating to death the tabloid story of the day. Just awful.

I like Chris Hayes on MSNBC but it's mostly a confirmation of what I already know. Like watching reruns it is not very exciting.

So, instead, I'm reading gossip websites.  It's a step up from politics. If you have been following Entertainment Lawyer's Crazy Days and Nights for even a short while, especially the "blind" items you can find enough craziness to make your head spin. Some of  CD&N filters  (laterally I think) over to Gawker , especially the blind items.

So, why is gossip better than politics?  1.More entertaining.  2. Better writing. 3. More interesting. 4.Less threatening. 5. Does not foster delusions that there is something you should and can do. 6. Easier to detach. 7. Refreshed daily, often hourly.

Happy days. Next comes reading and writing about dogs.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The issue is not the issue

 The Repubican agenda is not to reduce spending through reasonable (or any other) compromise with Democrats; their agenda is to destroy Obama.  Likely this single mindedness fueled by a catalog of resentments, including but not limited to, racism. Their destructive goal is simple, easily understood, easily followed--in short, an effective rallying point.  So, when we think the old approach to government through reasonable compromise is still operative, we are delusional.  No amount of give, on the part of Democrats will ever be enough and will always be rejected. Republicans will sacrifice the well being of middle and lower class Americans because they believe a failed government, at any cost, will rid the country of Obama.

The issue is not ever about what is best for us, best for the country, and to think it is is delusional.  All the noise about deficit reduction, small government and protection of individual liberties is a false sales pitch aimed at energizing the dissatisfied middle Americans. It is the same stuff: abortion, gun owner rights, and welfare abuse that has always been used to trick average and poorer Americans into voting against their own interests.

That is the great achievement of modern Republicans:  Manipulating working people into voting against their own interests.  

Monday, March 19, 2012

Picture this (global warming)

Is it going to be so hot in Chicago this Summer that there will blackouts and people will crowd into the lake and stand there shoulder to shoulder, chest deep, holding umbrellas to block the sun?


Every street scene photo from the 1940's and 50's shows men wearing fedoras and other brimmed hats. Why did they stop?

Men in the northeast don't wear brimmed hats because they are always in automobiles and with headrests and high backed seats  there's no room for brims.  Baseball hats, however, do work. Those that do wear brimmed hats are often cowboys, or cowboy imitators, or outdoors people from Maine or wish to appear to be any of the former.

Truth is, as a dedicated dog walker, rain or shine, I've come to admire how well my fedoras keep off the sun and guide the rain and snow safely beyond my collar. The fedoras make sense. From time to time I've heard the fedoras referred to as "old man hats".  When it comes to being an old man, I'm the genuine article. There's no sense trying to look like something I'm not.

When I was in a boatman's local of the Longshoreman's union I was already a Socialist sympathizer, if not actually a member.  I sometimes wore a white cap, something like a canvas version of the Irish style wool tweed caps with small front peak and panel sewed top, that (mostly in my imagination) identified me as a Harry Bridges man, a lefty union radical. Though of course, by then (70's and 80's) almost no one in the east coast ILA knew who the hell Harry Bridges was.  Some out west did and still do.

In a New York City strike in 1988 I was fired along with the other tug boat captains that would not cross the picket lines. In that sense, in my scheme of things, I legitimized my little white hat and stood comfortably with a couple of others who treasured their knowledge of labor history, Harry Bridges, and the clear eyed  ideals of solidarity with other workers  in the face of the inevitable greed, corruption and  exploitation.