Cassandra, Get a Life!!

I have been complaining to the bakers at Wegmans’ about the fact that they have discontinued their bran muffins. Until about six months ago, maybe longer, Wegmans was the last place you could get a real bran muffin, everyplace else having gone to a doughy cake-like mass with berries in it. (I have to footnote this… I was in Arlington, VA, last week and discovered that Heidelberg still makes a real bran muffin.) Today I got what passes for an answer. Wegmans is doing research into bran muffins, the baker explained. They want to make a new one that rises up tall, and looks more like the cakey, doughy things that pass for muffins these days.

As I understand it, bran muffins… and the world’s only other acceptable breakfast baked thing, the blueberry cake doughnut (either Wegmans or Duncan’s) lost a great deal in the way of texture and eye appeal when the baking world retreated from trans fats. (Wegmans discontinued the blueberry cake doughnut. Duncan still makes it, but it is now more like a Tim Horton thingy than a real doughnut.) Apparently, without the miracle of trans fats, the bran muffin comes out short and squat and is not appealing to tennis moms. I told the Wegmans baker that I liked the muffins the way they were. It was taste and a perception of wholesomeness that made the muffins appealing. Not so, he insisted. If they don’t look tall and puffy, they don’t sell.

I am always on the wrong side of these issues. I think the test of a muffin should be taste and nutrition. Everyone else thinks it should be appearance. The test of a car should be efficiency and comfort and reliability. If everyone agreed with me, cars like my 2002 Saturn, which got 39 mpg on my last trip to DC, would be commonplace. SUVs would be rare, and we would send a lot less money to our Saudi enemies. At the height of his folly, that moron George W. Busch enjoyed a plus 60 approval rating.

The willingness of my fellow citizens to succumb to the blandishments of hype is stunning even if it may ever have been thus. Emerson noted the same phenomena. “Society is everywhere in conspiracy against the manhood of everyone of its members. Society is a joint stock company in which the members agree, for the better securing of his bread to each share-holder, to surrender the liberty and culture of the eater.”  (Self Reliance)

Emerson maintained that the stubborn exercise of self reliant judgement was sufficient. I am not so certain. I can’t get a decent bran muffin without driving 400 miles to Heidelberg’s, my gas costs $4.25 a gallon, global warming is real and that moron George W. Busch was elected president twice.

Bite me you Morons!!!  Bite Yourselves.

Have some more old hash

Everytime I listen to the radio I feel like I have to dig up some old crap that should long ago have been accepted as common sense and waive it around for people to remember.  That’s what the work of speaking truth to morons is all about but sometimes its annoying.  Twice today:

John McCaine says “I would rather lose an election than lose a war.”  In short, his position  on winning the war is so right and Mr. Obama’s is so wrong that he would rather be right and lose than be wrong and win.  OK, actually, he will surrender the entire Army Reserve, bend over and grab his ankles for Prince Abdullah and that lying scumball Dik Chaney if that’s what it takes to get to be President.  This statement is a rhetorical lie, intended to make him look like an honorable war hero and Obama look like an opportunist.  Truth is he has never had a position on winning the war.  He took the position that it would be a good strategy to put more troops over there for a while.  He supported the SURGE, which is not necessarily “winning the war.”  There is no definition of what it means to win the war.  There is no proof that we can reduce the SURGE (UNSURGE?) without the violence renewing itself.  And is that what we went there for? (there was no civil war until after we got there.)  What is  winning?   What about beating all the terrorists? Getting control of all the oil that Mr. Wolfowitz said would pay for this?   Stabilizing the MIddle East?  McCaine has not supported winning the war.  He does not know what winning means.   (Style Note:  Hencefourth I’m spelling it McCaine as in Caine Mutiny.  Give that weasel a couple of marbles to play with and he will look just like Captain Queeg.) 

And later, NPR, which is sounding more and more like a propaganda machine for that moron George W. Busch, worked hard to convince us that the moron is some kind of an energy genius.  On today’s news, it dug up his quote from the Inaugural speech about how we are addicted to oil as proof that he has warned us but we just won’t listen.  Then it used his quote about how market forces are at work,  to prove that if we would just listen to reason and drill for more oil, we could solve this problem.  No mention of that Moron George W. Busch’s refusal to support fuel economy standards legislation, reduction of research for alternative fuels etc.   NPR.  Put it on your shit list. 

What the Washington Post does not remember

Today’s Washington Post has one of those little throw away lines in it that attempts to put things in perspective and glosses over a history of Busch Administration stupidity. The story on Page A-12 headlines “Sunni Bloc Rejoins Iraqi Government…”… Tells about how a Sunni group’s decision to rejoin the government is a good thing. “The United States has long viewed the inclusion of Sunnis in the political process as vital to national reconcilation,” the reporter opines, without attribution or elaboration. Really, I ask, how long is “long viewed”?

That Moron George W. Busch did not know the difference between a Sunni and a Shiite until some time after he invaded Iraq (bet he could not tell you the difference today if you asked him. John McKane is still trying to get the difference straight with the help of tutorials from Joe Lieberman). No one in the administration was bothered when the Sunni boycotted the 2005 elections, a prelude to a long and violent sectarian civil war which the Busch Administration never acknowledged at all, and now claims to have ended by virtue of the SURGE. In mid 2006, there is some evidence that the Busches were beginning to see the advantages of alliances with the Sunni warlords. So How long is “long viewed”? Not more than two years? I guess that is a long view when you are talking about the short-sited policies of the Busch Administration.

Speak Truth to Morons

Some time ago I decided it was not worth talking to some people about politics. This happened when I asked someone exactly what we were accomplishing in Iraq and this person told me again and again that we were defeating terrorists etc. And then I realized that this person actually believed all the bullshit put out by that moron George Busch and that lying scumbag Dik Chaney. This person knew nothing about Iraq except that we had fought a war there in 1991, did not know that difference between an Arab and a Persian, Sunni and Shiite. This person … who is not unlike most of the people who voted for that moron George Busch… had not the independence of mind to consider the possibility that Iraq could not have maintained the ability to produce weapons of mass destruction and if it had, could not possibly deliver them far outside the fertile crescent’ This person had not enough real information in his repertoire to contemplate the possibility that the only non-religious government in the middle east was not likely to consort with a bunch of religious fanatics like the Al Queda. When I thought about it, I realized that the person I was trying to have an intelligent discussion with got all his news from a uneducated fat assed pill popping radio jockey. Why talk to him about anything more complicated than the weather?
So I stopped talking politics and policy to any but people who I know to be educated, thinking independent people. Not that there is anything wrong with it… I learn a lot from talking to my educated friends, many of whom know a lot more than I do about current events and the policies that do… or should…move them. But sometimes you gotta rant. So I will rant here. Here I will speak truth to Morons. I can fantasize that occasionally a moron will stop by here, read a little, feel challenged, be educated… But that is not why I do this. I do it because it feels good. Every policy wonk has to have a soap box. This will be mine.
To make it clear what my perspective is, I will observe a few style conventions on this site. First, that moron George W. Busch will always be referred to as that moron George W. Busch; that lying scumbag Dik Chaney will always be referred to as that lying scumbag Dik Chaney; and that traitor to his nation Ronnie Raygun will always be referred to as that traitor to his nation Ronnie Raygun. I will call a facist a facist and will refer to the Republican Party only when I am referring to the historical Republican Party, the Party of Lincoln, not when I am referring to the modern thing that calls itself the Republican party. Richard Noxin will always be Richard Noxin, Newty Gringo will always be so called. Lush Rimbaugh will always be an uneducated fat assed pill popping radio jockey. Bill Clinton’s blow job will be referred to as fun with Monica in the closet.
Its my blog and welcome it.

Gory Old Poopers

Ladies and gentlemen, another guest column from my Dear Old Dad:

Here is a puzzle. What does the GOP believe in? If you were a completely objective observer, standing on the outside looking in, what would you conclude they believe in? I know there are a lot of Republicans who are honest and sincere when they say they believe in small government, or are pro-business, or moral correctness, national defense, democracy.

Small government? Well, that’s a good one, except that there has yet to be a Republican administration that actually tried to do this, and I am not sure it is a valid basis for building a government anyway. The only administrations to reduce the size of the government in the last 50 years have been Democratic. Raygun thought it was more important to build up the military industrial complex. Busch has effectively neutered the government by establishing an incompetent kleptocracy, but he has not made it any smaller. The Raygun had it right, I think. A government needs to be as big as it needs to be to get the job done. If we have to beef it up to destroy the evil empire, then so be it. Raygun knew that. I will not speculate on what Dubya knows or does not know. My guess is he does not know much of anything.

Pro-business? A case can be made that Republicans are pro-business, but not necessarily pro-all-business. Republicans are pro-established business, like the oil business. By choosing industries to be for, they don’t necessarily help other businesses that might be more important to our future. Alternative fuels, for example. Pro the drug companies, opposed to the legitimate interests of small business in low cost health care for employees. Opposed to immigration, opposed to the legitimate interest of small businesses in low cost labor. Pro WallMart, opposed to Target.

Pro morality…There are absolute moralities and relative moralities. I suggest it is absolutely immoral to pervert the Constitution, invade the privacy of citizens, torture prisoners. Republicans think this is patriotic. Relativism makes this morality thing all the more complicated. So, whose morality? At what point in history? Had Republicans had their way, miscegenation would still be considered a moral imperative. Should government enforce the rigid morality of the Catholic Church? (I guess torture would be okay, then. They had the Inquisition, after all.) The gentle world view of the Quakers? Is it moral to deny the rights granted to heterosexual parents to same-sex parents? You can’t build a government on morality. Surely you can’t really build a political movement on it either.

National Defense. We would hope that the Republican party is in favor of national defense. Who isn’t? I think a case can be made that all those Republicans who favor an established religion would be more comfortable with Sharia than any Democrat. Certainly it is one of the dumbest notions Republicans have tried to promote that Free Thinking Democrats are somehow soft on Islamic terrorism. But do Republicans really care about National Defense? Would a true proponent of national defense create a phony war and squander our military power in the interest of winning an election? The most important issues of defense have been ignored by the Republican party for the last five years. They have payed lip service to homeland security and squandered billions on a useless bloodbath in Iraq. They have invested nothing in protecting our nuclear power plants, our ports, our major population centers from renewed terrorist attack. They have failed to establish any kind of intelligence network that understands Islamic cultures.  (The FBI trains Russian speakers, but has only 33 employees who have any familiarity (not fluency) with Farsi.) And we are no longer in a position to address the issue of Korean nuclear arms because we have no army to stand behind us. It’s tied down in Iraq.

Democracy? Republicans have openly and proudly participated in stolen elections and vote(re)/supression. They have had protestors arrested and or harrassed by police outside Busch and Chaney rallies, George Macaca Allen stood by while his stooges beat up a reporter, George Busch says people who do not agrtee with him are traitors. Sounds more like facism than democracy.

So what do Republicans believe in? Lining their pockets with government money. Taking that money from the middle class. Torturing captives. Censoring critics. Hating hispanics.

What?