Gloat Gloat Gloat

First, the ugly. I like Virginia and all of its gifts. I like living in Arlington. It has good restaurants. But it has forced me to counsel my transsexual uncle and his wife to consider a vote via Nike. And if they go, so might I. This amendment is stupid. One can only hope that the courts don’t like it, as they are wont to do, or that the unintended circumstances will be untenable.

Aside from that, the play was very nice, thank you. One can’t complain about wrenching the House of Representatives from Republigoat control so overwhelmingly. One can’t complain about making them sweat this profusely over the Senate—a brass ring we weren’t even thinking we’d be able to grab—nor over the results in governor’s races nationwide, and state legislatures, and all the dog catcher positions that will be filled by Democrats as well.

I have to say, I like Rep. Pelosi’s 100-hour plan. Immediately taking up the issue of a federal living wage, that’s beautiful, then of shattering the stranglehold of the K Street thugs, that’s even more sweeter. I hope they’ll also consider throwing down the gauntlet of campaign finance reform. Nothing matters if we can’t fix that. It would also be nice to start investigating what on Earth is wrong with our voting system. I mean, yes, I’m happy with the results, but there are still questions about how our votes are counted and by whom.

What a lot of work we have to do. Let’s roll up our sleeves and get started.

Kerry Should Be Fitted For A Muzzle

It was terrific to see John Kerry all plucky on Halloween. Terrific. Stunning, it was. Almost Bill Clinton-Chris Wallace redux. Still, though. It doesn’t hardly count when your courage comes to you while you’re busy mopping up your own brain vomit.   

“Education, if you make the most of it and you study hard and you do your homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. If you don’t, you get stuck in Iraq.”

As they say on Grey’s Anatomy: Seriously?

Noting first that the adjective “botched” these days most often modifes the subject “boob job,” it is worth noting second exactly how many things were wrong with John F. Kerry’s  “botched joke.” For starters, even if he hadn’t have stepped on it, it wouldn’t have been funny.

It’s not funny anymore to say that George W. Bush is stupid. It’s especially not funny if you’re the man he vanquished to acquire another go at residency in the White House. It’s also not funny anymore because the chimp’s stupidity has led to such an awesome tragedy. Pointing out that George W. Bush is occassionally prone to malapropisms or that he was a C student is like telling a pollack joke or watching Eddie Murphy’s “Raw.” 

However. John Kerry did step on it, and how. In his indignant press conference, Kerry acted as if nobody in his right mind could have construed from his comments what the press secretary claimed to have construed. Ballocks. It’s right there on its face. You have to run it through a filter to get what Kerry meant to say, not to get what he said. The White House did no heavy lifting whatsoever to haul all that sweet ammunition in. Kerry just handed it to them, they said “thanks,” and they used it.

There should be no surprise about this, of course. This is John Kerry’s M.O. He was for it before he was against it. He’d fight a sensitive war on terror. Let’s go snowboarding. Shall I hold the door for you, George?

Don’t get me wrong. It’s good to see John Kerry all plucky and mean. We need more articulate Democrats to stand up and look all stern and say things like “if anyone owes our troops in the fields an apology, it is the president and his failed team…” and “enough is enough” and so on. That’s precisely what we need to do. But John Kerry—let’s put it this way: He had one hell of an audition, but he didn’t get invited to Hollywood. He should take a page from failed presidential candidate Al Gore. Grow a beard. Get fat. Stay away from microphones. Refect a while. Then come back and be Thomas friggin’ Paine.

I want John Kerry in a muzzle. I don’t want him running for President. I don’t want him speaking. Just show up to the Senate to vote, then go home. Good boy.  

Freedom’s Untidy

Fred and Ed are housemates. They’re hanging out one day and the guy from the funny orange house up the street walks in through the front door. Neither Fred nor Ed seem to notice him. The guy walks up to the second floor, then jumps down to the landing. He lands on the cat. Both cat and neighbor die instantly.

Fred jumps up off the couch and starts loading his car up with guns and explosives. Ed watches Fred load the car and helps him a little. While they’re loading the car, Fred is talking about how the neighbor was evil, and that the other people who live in the funny orange house are probably planning to come for the hamsters and the beagle, and that he’s determined to get them before they do. 

Ed doesn’t argue. In fact, he asks if he can help. He thinks Fred’s verve is a little weird. But he’s pretty pissed about the cat, too, so he’s with Fred no matter what. He helps load the car and asks if he can do anything else. Fred says no and backs out of the drive.

He drives up the street and parks in front of the orange house. He gets out of the car. He walks up to the house. He kicks the siding. Then he gets back in his car and drives around the block to the blue house down the street on the other side. 

He drives the car over the sidewalk, through the gate, up the walk, up the porch, through the front wall, and into the living room. He exits his car and starts shooting and setting off explosives. This goes on for about 20 minutes. When he’s done, Ned, who lives there, comes out and says, hey, thanks. I had ants.

Fred surveys the damage and says he’ll help fix it and in fact that when he’s done it’ll be a palace. He tells Ned that he really ought to move the sofa. From there on out, they spend three hours rearranging furniture. Finally, Ned begins to bristle. We’re just moving furniture, he says. We’re not actually accomplishing anything. And goddamit, he says. I still have ants.

Ed has been watching from across the street. He’s been trying to call Fred on the mobile but hasn’t been able to get through. He finally gets through and says to Fred, hey, Fred, what the hell was that all about?

And Fred says, “Hey, man. Back off.”

It’s not a perfect analogy, not by any stretch of the imagination. But it’s, you know. Somewhat. 

A Coarse Course

Now that the Bush administration has abandoned the moronic phrase they’d pounded into our heads for years and has in fact attempted to claim they never actually used the phrase—these dirty rotten Stalinist hogfuckers—I can’t help but sit down and try to create new, innovative ways for them to wriggle out of this one.

My first idea was to propose a compromise, possibly between the erstwhile phrase and the accusatory and shamefully purposely inaccurate phrase, “cut and run.” I initially proposed “cut the course.” But of course that makes no sense. So a friend cut in with thus: “The new bipartisan slogan incorporates themes from all sides of the debate: ‘Let it run its course.'”

One could, of course, claim that what the President meant to imply was that there really isn’t a war, that what we’re actually doing in Iraq is competing in an obstacle course. Or, perhaps, that he was actually offering to feed every American a nice meal, as in, “Stay. Please. Have another course.” He might have been actually trying to say that the United States would have to stay rough and tough, as in, “We’re going to stay coarse.”

Where, oh where do these people come from?

Well Smack My Ass And Call Me Judy

“This list of the bills most likely to be championed by committee chairmen in a Pelosi-led House of Representatives would be great fodder for the latenight talk show hosts if it weren’t true. Instead, it’s just plain scary. While Republicans fight the War on Terror, grow our robust economy, and crack down on illegal immigration, House Democrats plot to establish a Department of Peace, raise your taxes, and minimize penalties for crack dealers. The difference couldn’t be starker.”
?House Majority Whip Roy Blunt

There are some statements made by Republigoats that are simply so idiotic that when I try to write about it, it makes me feel that I need to leave my keyboard and? step into a hot shower. To a statement like Blunt’s, all one can really say is, “Tartlets. Tartlets. Tartlets.

“The word has lost all meaning.”

Kudos to Dennis Kucinich and the other legislators who have signed on to the idea of creating a Department of Peace. Any man who poo-poos this fine idea probably also kicks puppies.

Doubleplus Ungood

We got so stirred up with other issues here at KIAV (such as the odd protuberance that was dangling from the undercarriage of the company car) that we neglected to mark the signing of the Military Commissions Act of 2006 and the resulting odd bloody death of that pesky concept of “recourse to the law.”

Well, here he is, the “President of the United States” signing the law, hovering over yet another sadly misleading banner. What is it with this administration and the little banners written in newspeak? Whatsamatter? “Doublegood Noexplode Oceania” didn’t fit?

You see, from my perspective, signature of a bill that provides beefed up security at chemical plants, or that improves container inspections at our ports, or that creates a new plan of evacuation of the West Coast in case of an earthquake, those are some ideas about how we could, you know, protect America.

Giving the President of the United States godlike powers is, to me, you know, sort of the direct opposite.

The Peter Principle

Again, a guest posting from my Dad.


Today I ran across a blog by some guy who had been arrested and beaten up by cops because he carried a sign outside a Dik Chaney rally.? The signs said “Dick is a Dik” or something like that. This is pretty typical behavior of facists…and certainly not the first time I have heard this story about a Busch or Cheney rally. They don’t want to hear any criticism (which Busch has pretty much said is unpatriotic) so they let cops be themelves and…some citizen gets beat up and jailed. ? (What is it about cops anyway? Has there ever been a cop who just said…you cant beat up citizens for speaking out…Who said Gee, Americans have a right to be Americans. Why are cops so willing and ready to staunch basic civil liberties?)

What really struck me about this story is that it was so typical of what we have seen with these guys since the beginning. And what really amazes me is that there is not more of it. Certainly, the right wing cheerleading machine of Bill O’Liar and Ann Colter and Rush Limpbone go into positively rapturous frenzies over this kind of stuff, and they could certainly line up an army of ready and willing brownshirts.

Yet, we are still pretty free and getting stronger every day. The Busch adnministration has been the subject of most of the funny things I have seen and heard in the last couple of years, and most of that has been in the public domain. On radio, the Internet, on television. They even had a TV show that seriously discussed the question, “Is George Busch an Idiot?” I write seditious stuff all the time. I am sure the NSA has my e-mail tracked. For a while there I asked daily by e-mail “Where is Osama?”

Truth is, we are damned lucky George Busch is an incompetent dumbass.

I don’t think for a moment that we would be free if he could do what he wanted, if he actually knew how to put a program on the ground and manage it and make it work,? if he ever had a business that made money, we should be afraid. If he ever hired someone who was not a complete moron, we should be concerned. If he had half the skills it would have taken to make Katrina something other than a farce…we should be very afraid.

If we ever got a George Busch facist in office who was as cunning as Hitler, efficient as Mussolini, capable as Saddam Hussein…we would be in deep shit. We should let this guy be a lesson to us.

If we don’t, the next one will be real.

Sing Along With Mitch

Bob Edwards’ interview recently with reporter John Cheves of the Lexington Herald-Leader has inspired the crack editorial staff here at KIAV to create a brand new category for a single solitary senator: Mitch McConnell.

Cheves has been writing a series of articles about McConnell, who will be majority leader in the Senate if the Democrats do not succeed in their bid to sweep the Republigoats out. Cheves says McConnell is the Senate’s foremost expert on that body’s rules and that he is one of its most successful fundraisers. He was one of the most stalwart obstacles to McCain-Feingold. He’s one of the big reasons that Medicare can’t negotiate for better? pharmeceutical prices. And, I think most terrifying of all, he’s a pioneer in the practice of? tying foreign aid to campaign finance.

Here are some of Cheves’ articles. Read up. Set a Google alert for “Mitch McConnell.” I intend to blog about? Mitch quite a bit. ?

Signed, Aaron’s Dad

Today, a guest post from my Dear Old Dad, one of the smartest guys I know:

I? am distressed that no one in the Democratic party has articulated what seems to me to be the simplest and most direct response to Busch on the ? prosecution of the war on terror. Busch says he is fighting the war on terror. Democrats say he lied about Iraq and has failed absolutely to deliver on his promise to rebuild Iraq, establish democracy there etc: Of course the Democrats are right, but these positions do not address Busch’s claim.

“I am fighting the War on Terror”, he says. The answer is that he is not. Not by a longshot.

To fight the war on terror, we need to:? 1.? Establish a comprehensive defense by a. ? protecting our infrastructure. (The Head of Homeland Security says we can’t afford to do that because of budget constraints) b. establish a better intelligence network. (In five years we still have no farsi or erdu speaking FBI agents). 2.? Build effective networks around the world that can help us contain terrorists economically and cooperate in information gathering. (We cant do this because everyone hates us, thanks to Busch policies). 3. Build long-term infrastructure that will enable us to defeat terrorism. This might involve an international liberal educational program where American students learn Farsi, Erdu and other key languages, study cultures etc: while foreign students, Arabs, Phillipinos, Asians, Europeans learn American culture; address the economic issues that underlie the distrust and hatred of the developed world by improving the quality of life in those countries. 4. Remove dependence on oil. 5. Address the religious and cultural underpinnings of Wahabbism, and similarly militant cultures that foment international terrorism. ? This may require recognizing that some cultures just hate us and recognizing that we just need to deal with that, perhaps by military means. One important thing to recognize is that The Wahabi hate other Muslems more than they hate us. Busch has given all Muslems a reason to forget their differences and hate us first.

Finally to fight the war on Terror we have to walk away from the side show in Iraq. ? It is straining our resources, killing our kids and not accomplilshing a damn thing. ? We have a lot of work to do. The Democratic Party should be demanding that we get to it. Now.