Pat Robertson is an idiot

On January 3rd, Pat Robertson announced that God had told him who the next president would be and that the US was headed towards economic collapse.

I’d like to point out that if Pat Robertson needed God to tell him that the US economy would likely continue to be in trouble, then Pat Robertson is pretty damn stupid. Are his followers going to wake up tomorrow, turn on the news, hear the talking heads talk about layoffs, more unemployment, etc., and say, “Holy Cow, Pat was right!”?

I, too, have a method for divining the future:

I’m not big on bible stuff, but isn’t the good book pretty specific on telling the reader that people who claim to be prophets are liars?  (2 Chronicles 18:22):  “Now therefore, behold, the LORD hath put a lying spirit in the mouth of these thy prophets, and the LORD hath spoken evil against thee.”


Political Primary Roundup

It's like that Indiana Jones movie except in this version every last chalice is filled with poison.

Everybody has been asking me, “Who do you like to get the Republican nomination?“* Well, in celebration of New Year’s Eve, I’m looking at the candidates and giving you the straight poop.

This week it seems to have been all Ron Paul all the time. Normally I would say that Paul is too shrunken-looking and gnome-like to be a contender, but, if I were voting in the GOP primary, his ‘legalize it’ stance would move him to the top of my list and then his, “well, I didn’t write those things about the n-ggers and jews, I just published them” would move him right back down to the bottom again.  I’m sure the race war card will play well in some demographics, however.

These little peckers are earning self reliance and developing a much needed work ethic, plus they are making 8 cents a day!

I’d like to thank Newt Gingrich for beginning every sentence with, “When I get to Washington…” as if he is some teen-aged Abraham Lincoln working on the farm in Illinois and dreaming of things to come.  For the guy who has walked into every meeting in Washington since Clinton was President saying, “What’s in this for me?,” trying to convince voters that you are a political outsider seems a hard sell, but Newt managed to sell himself as a champion of the importance of character while simultaneously illustrating that he has none, so I probably shouldn’t underestimate him. One thing in Newt’s favor is that now college history majors can tell their worried parents that history was a good major choice since Newt made a gajillion dollars from Fannie Mae in a few short hours as a ‘history consultant.’  Although I would question how much actual history Newt has studied after he said that child labor laws are stupid.

I cannot mention Rick Perry without wondering aloud how one happens to shoot coyotes while out for a morning jog. Was he jogging down some suburban street and saw some coyote hanging out on a street corner smoking cigarettes and getting ready to abduct a child?  Or was he out jogging on the trails of  N!ggerhead his family hunting ranch? I’m also wondering if one goes jogging with a pistol, where do you put it?  I think if one were to run down the road with a pistol in your hand, that could lead to your being mistaken for Clyde Barrow, so a holster of some kind is probably in order.  And you probably want some sort of ballistic nylon holster with velcro to keep your gat from flopping around and hitting you in the junk.  With his helmet-like hair and easy smile, he certainly looks the part of a GOP presidential candidate, though sometimes I have trouble telling him and Mitt Romney apart.

Rick Santorum has taken the “What stupid thing will they say next?” tiara away from Michelle Bachmann — which seems like quite an accomplishment since Bachmann has managed to say something astoundingly stupid so often, so perhaps we shouldn’t discount his determination.  He’s the “Sheriff Joe Arapio” of national politics; given the frequency with which he worries about the ‘homosexual agenda,’ I’m sure it’s just a matter of time until he is found toe tapping in some toilet stall.

Bachmann has crazy eyes and makes Palin seem like a philosopher… so other candidates are probably paying her to stay in the race sort of like a homely looking guy might stand next to a really ugly friend and think it made him look ‘handsome’ in comparison.

Mitt Romney seems the safe choice, but in the last election a plurality of Ohio Republican voters said, “We are just not ‘ready’ for a black president,” so that makes me wonder if they are similarly unready for a Mormon one. To me, Mormonism (with it’s magic spectacles, mystic underwear and disappearing golden books) sounds like a Harry Potter story — I find myself wondering if I am ready for a Mormon president.  But he says the things that the US Department of Commerce wants to hear, so maybe I should get used to the idea.  Like Perry, Romney ‘looks’ the part, so, if I were a betting man, smart money would be on him.

I’m actually thinking that as a Republican president, Obama hasn’t done too badly.  When he landed in office, all the Fox News talking heads opined long and hard about his being a ‘secret muslim’ or having a ‘radical leftist agenda,’ but now it feels like the people who voted against Obama have gotten more of what they want over the past few years than the people who voted for him.  Go figure.

*Actually, no one has been asking me… but I thought it would make a clever lead in.


Peppersprayer: ink and china white on paper November 2011

Today is black friday when people go batshit crazy with their shopping.

Last night/this morning, some woman standing in line to buy an x-box at Wal-mart got pissed because other people were jumping ahead of her, so she peppersprayed them.

I’m pretty sure that’s not what Jesus would have wanted.

But, in her honor, I drew this peppersprayer dude based on the campus cop who sprayed down the kids at UC Davis 4 days ago.  I took some liberties… but all artists are liars by nature. My model poses below:

Sympathy for the kids at UC Davis

Given all the pepper-spray cop art floating around the web, I thought I would remind folks that I was into the pepper spray meme before anyone one else.  This is a drawing I did for one of Goodman’s DCC Classics a few years ago (I don’t remember which one):

"Get outta here yah dirty hippie!"

It was from some book where there was a kitchen where this big, ugly, hairy bastard was cooking, and, when you bothered him, he would throw pepper in your face. Once again, I was ahead of my time.  (Note to self:  get with Goodman to do mousepads and T-Shirts and coffee cups so we can cash in on this thing.)

In related news, talking head Megyn Kelly recently opined to Bill O’Rielly that being sprayed in the face with pepper spray was ‘not that bad’ because pepper spray is ‘basically a food product.’   This makes it sound like the campus police were spraying them down with PAM.  I would invite her to take a single habanero pepper and rub it on her hands, then touch her own lips, eyes and nostrils right before doing a broadcast and see how chirpy she can be with even minute amounts of this ‘food product’ on her face.

I give up…

Sometimes it is the little things that get you down.  Like Congress trying to decide whether or not pizza should be considered a vegetable.  “Vegetable,” in this case, means whether or not pizza can ‘count’ towards a serving of vegetables for the US school lunch food program.

A few years ago, Washington wanted us to believe that ketchup should be considered a vegetable.  A few years before that, they wanted to reclassify salsa as a vegetable.  I think that most sane people would agree that eating some salsa on some chips or eating some ketchup on a hamburger is not a substitute for a salad or carrots or an ear of corn.

The mendacity of the whole process by which Congress decides what children should eat is revealed by this quote from a pro-pizza-as-vegetable lobbyist from the American Frozen Food Institute “If the USDA rule went forward as is, pizza would most certainly be all but impossible to serve in school lunch programs,” said Corey Henry, a spokesman for the American Frozen Food Institute.  “Schools have to meet nutrition requirements at every meal to get reimbursed by the federal government. To get a vegetable credit using tomato paste under the USDA’s proposed rule, schools would have to drown pizza in tomato sauce to the point where kids would never want to eat a slice of pizza. If schools have to add so much sauce to get a vegetable credit that pizza becomes inedible, they simply won’t serve pizza any longer.”

In other words, Mr. Henry is saying that in order to get pizza paid for by the tax payer, they would have to add more actual vegetable matter to the pizza.  But adding more vegetables to the pizza in order to make it qualify as a vegetable might make the kids like it less, therefore the solution is to just change the definition of what a vegetable is to include pizza so that the companies that sell pizza to schools can continue to make money off of the taxpayer.

Why stop there?  I’m sure the candy manufacturers would love it if we redefined ‘jellybeans’ as a vegetable.  Heck, it even has ‘bean’ in the name so it’s gotta be a vegetable, right?  And who says something even needs to be edible in order to qualify as a vegetable?  I’m sure the makers of paper clips would love to get some school lunch program money, so why not reclassify paperclips as a vegetable, too?

No wonder our education system is totally jacked up.

Frank Miller’s America

"Take that, you hippie scum!"

I haven’t kept up with the popular comics for decades and names like ‘Frank Miller’ don’t  mean that much to me — I have vague notions of who he is based on movies like ‘The 300’  and I know he is credited with breathing new life into the Batman franchise. So I wasn’t in the loop when news broke of Frank Miller’s diatribe against the ‘Occupy Wall Street’ movement.

Miller had this to say: “The “Occupy” movement, whether displaying itself on Wall Street or in the streets of Oakland (which has, with unspeakable cowardice, embraced it) is anything but an exercise of our blessed First Amendment. “Occupy” is nothing but a pack of louts, thieves, and rapists, an unruly mob, fed by Woodstock-era nostalgia and putrid false righteousness. These clowns can do nothing but harm America.”

I want to ask Mr. Miller to explain why he thinks that citizens assembling and making their grievances known will result in harm to America. Isn’t the ‘right to assemble’ and all that other stuff really the central point of democracy?  Our leaders certainly seem to like public demonstrations against the corruption of rulers when they occur in places like Egypt; why doesn’t Miller like them when they occur closer to home?  If the Egyptians want to hold their rulers accountable for mismanagement, shouldn’t US citizens help the Egyptians on their steps to democracy by cleaning our own house, too?   And, while there have been examples of vandalism, theft and other bad behavior at the Occupy protests, the number of ‘bad acts’ has been statistically insignificant.  Some people  misbehave whenever a hundred or a thousand folks gather in any place for any reason (including shopping on Black Friday).  And, compared to the Penn State students who rioted when their favorite coach was fired, the Occupiers have been angels.  Calling them “louts, thieves and rapists” is just inaccurate.  There may be ‘louts, thieves and rapists‘ in the crowd at the Occupy assemblies, but they (we) did not assemble because they (we) wanted to behave badly.  We assembled because our government and our economy has been broken by corruption and greed and neither the democrats nor the republicans are willing to try to fix it.

“Occupy’ is an effort to save democracy, not an attempt to tear it down. I’m surprised that Miller does not understand that.

(edited for sentence fragment)

Let us talk about the gay elephant in the room…

Representative Phillip Hinkle, R-Indiana, has resently joined the ranks of politicians who campaigned against ‘the homosexual agenda’ (their words, not mine) while also attempting to arrange a homosexual encounter with another man. Just a guess on my part, but I’ll bet the young man he contacted via Craigslist was not his first walk on the wild side.

I’m all for consenting adults being allowed to do what they do behind closed doors and keep secret the details that have no relevance to their job performance — but why does it seem that a month cannot go by without someone who has publically endorsed the conservative party line on homosexuality getting outed?

In other gay news, Tea Party favorite Michelle Bachmann has recently announced that if elected president of the US, she would seek to overturn the repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,‘ (which I guess means that all of the soldiers who came out of the closet as of September 20th this year (when “D. A. D. T.” officially ends) will have to go back into the closet when they once again reinstate “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” and all the soldiers who knew that ~10% of their comrades were gay a week ago will suddenly have to pretend like they don’t know that). Nevermind that The Pentagon has already determined that it is time to update the sexual orientation policy. Nevermind that a plurality of soldiers currently serving have said it’s time to drop “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” She’s gonna get the gays in uniform back in the closet because that’s the kind of promise that gets her base excited (how appropriate to refer to them as ‘base.’)…

I wonder how many of those ‘anti-gay’ Bachmannites are also a little ‘light in the loafers’? “Shhhhh! My congregation thinks I’m straight!”

Why is it that the majority of politicians who describe themselves as ‘social convservatives’ seem to want to suggest that ‘government get the heck out of our private lives‘ whenever Michelle Obama suggests that kids ought to eat an apple once in a while, but they do want to try to get the government involved in the sex lives and living arrangements of consenting adults? Am I just not understanding the whole ‘smaller government’ thing?

Let’s get something straight right now…

Open letter to the US media: I refuse to accept that ‘potential’ or ‘possible’ presidential candidates are worthy of my attention. Someone is either a candidate or they are not. Do not enable ‘media-whorism’ or public displays of narcissism on the part of has beens, almost weres, also rans and book-deal chasers.
Are you a candidate?” should have only two possible and very simple answers (‘Yes‘ and ‘No‘). If a ‘potential’ refuses to answer those questions, do not report on him/her until he/she gives a straight answer.

Desperate for attention, Glenn Beck sinks to a new low

Glenn Beck apparently saw all of the headlines about the attack in Norway by Anders Breivik and said to himself, “How can I get in on some of that attention?” Well, he gave it his best shot by comparing the people who got slaughtered at the Utoeye camp to ‘The Hitler Youth,‘ provoking hoped for howls of outrage from all over and once again getting his own name into the headlines.

“There was a shooting at a political camp, which sounds a little like the Hitler Youth, or whatever,” Beck said. “I mean, who does a camp for kids that’s all about politics? Disturbing,” Would he had made the same statement if the shooting had occurred at one of the youth camps sponsored by Beck’s own 9/12 organization in which instructors provide “heritage-based education for youth, with special focus on the Constitution and the Founding generation”?

“I’m thinking about killing Glenn Beck, and I’m wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it. … No, I think I could. I think he could be looking me in the eye, you know, and I could just be choking the life out. Is this wrong?…” (now, now, put your righteous indignation away; for context, check #3 here)

Who is Charles Foster Kane?

Citizen Kane was one of those movies that they used to show us in school to illustrate the ‘art’ of cinema and I think most of the kids watching resented it because we really didn’t want to see some ‘old’ movie where nothing blew up, no one got shot, there was no shower scene and we had to pay attention to what people were saying in order to understand the point of the film.

Despite my immaturity at the time of the first viewing, I remember thinking Citizen Kane was a great movie, even though, as a kneejerk teenager I was probably predisposed to hate everything that a teacher might have said was worth watching. What I continue to like about it is that it is one of the few films in which the ‘hero’ (Welles’ “Kane”) transforms from a charismatic, idealistic and energetic reformer into a tyrant. Usually we get to see it go the other way around (the ‘bad man’ gets a shot at redemption).

I understand Rupert Murdoch’s career has followed a similar trajectory, except without the “once having been a nice guy” part. According to folks who knew him ‘back in the day,’ when he was in college he was an outspoken leftist and continually publically pilloried his fellow students for perceived defects in character or ideology. As the son of a wealthy Australian newspaper owner, he was apparently one of those people who claimed to ‘love the common man’ without ever wanting to actually go through the inconvenience of having to be a common man. He dropped the ‘Labour’ party bit like other folks droped flares and found his raison d’etre as a “kingmaker.”

My own hope is that, frustrated by the recent “News of the World” scandal, he will soon retire to his Xanadu where he will marinade in isolation and bitterness and eventually mutter the name of a beloved childhood toy before slipping off to the next world. Unfortunately, the real world is not like cinema and the grasping, cynical people seem to live forever.