Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Click the link. Nice little project. It was slated to get funding from the National Park Service. This is one of the problems sensible people face. So many holes in the dike of sanity, with the id-driven zombie hoard on the other side of the barrier armed with drills and steel spikes, three shifts of 'em, poking and drilling and punching, driven by something so deep they have no idea of what drives them forward.
Down here in NC I think the people who for some reason started out as Republicans think it's not fair that the Democratic Party got all the loot for so long. Maybe that's how it looks, from the outside, just rampant looting. Get in, get connected, make the deals, retire with a highway named after you. When the vandals broke through here in NC they simply brushed aside all the rules and laws that stood in their way. Fracking is money, so hell with those annoying ecological tests, get 'er done. Over in Raleigh at the State Fair, which was the small dominion of the North Carolina Secretary of Agriculture for ever and ever, the Democrats had a deal with the James Strates Shows for ever and ever. I'd see the train parked on a siding when I'd go to the Fair as a kid. "James E Strates" written on every car. They hauled the rides and stuff from Fair to Fair. Now they got a new company doing the gig, hired by the Republicans. This year a ride fell down. The owner is in jail in Raleigh, dressed in stripes and cuffed for his initial appearance. Three people fell some 30 feet, condition unknown at this time. Paper said the ride owner had a cocaine conviction in Ohio in 1997. Sleuth reporters, on the case. Course every story on the WRAL website comes with "left-leaning Democrat claims...." in the lead. If only they could discover a left-leaning feature to the Vortex Thrill Ride. "Yep, it war shore leaning left jes afore it fell down, yep, I sez to the little missus, that looks kindly left-leaning."
The Legislature banned the words "sea-level rise" as their small step towards stemming the tide and the warming trend we've initiated with our fancy-dancy industrial revolution. There will be no further studies in North Carolina. As for such projects as an oral history of the outer banks, well, it's hard to see such details from the roof of Mr. Romney's house, and anybody who has to go out in a little boat and haul crab pots for a living is prima facie one of the Forty Seven Percent. Anyways, it'll all be underwater in 50 years, but don't tell anybody I told you so. That'd be illegal.
If you want to consider more sanity, go find Rachel Maddow's show for October 29 and watch the opening segment, about Hurricane Sandy and how they just barely kept the Harlem River from flooding all the East Side subway lines. The scientists predicted the flood within three inches; that is, there was just three inches to spare on the eight foot plywood dam when the storm rolled in. That's pretty good science if you ask me. It won't make some legislator any money though.
Monday, October 28, 2013
We got going yesterday about 7:15, and made it to Martinsville about 9, finding our pals just where they'd said they were on the cell coming in, slightly east of the row of portolets which were lining the main road through the hilly grounds that are the parking area for the track itself. We found a place nearby in short order, then wandered the banks of merch semis and watched Danica give a sweet interview, after that part of an interview with Junior, where we joined the mugger audience.
I got myself, at last, one of the difficult to find Kyle Busch Interstate Battery hats. Libby shopped for tiny model race cars, some of which she'll present to our nephew Wyatt down the road.
It was altogether a perfect day. The sky was blue, the temp in the '60s. While there was plenty of banging and bumping in the race, the last section of 50 or so laps was caution free, and there was not a tiresome green/while/checker finale. Jeff Gordon overtook Matt Kenseth with a few laps remaining and won the race. Bren, the Early Blurs website designer/manager and our seat mate at the race pulls for Jeff, and it's the first race he's won at Martinsville since we've been going--usually the place is owned either by Jimmie Johnson or Denny Hamlin. My man Kyle has never won there. Bren's hubby pulls for Tony Stewart, who won last year, and the dune buggy in the pic at the top is his ride, but with Mark Martin at the wheel because Stewart has been recovering from a bad wreck in the summer.
After the race we all met at the portolets and our vehicles, and watched the big semis roll out. There's no point in trying to leave Martinsville in a hurry. It was dark before we got on the road, at the very tail end of the long parade down 220 to Greensboro and points south. I did get to use a portolet before we left. Someone had stuck a little placard into the urinal. It read "Vote NRA." What's a guy to do. I sure didn't try to rescue it. I should have taken a picture.
Addendum (from our conversation on the ride home). If you look closely at the dune buggy chasing Jeff photo at the top you'll note that they painted the concrete guttering that lines the inside of the turns at Martinsville a vivid pink for the race--part of the on-going initiative in sports to remind people that breast cancer exists and needs research. Of all the risable Limbovian memes (and he's not the only one--there are actual alleged women running this garbage too), this surely tops the very long list: somehow sport is being "feminized." We then imagined a race on Limbovian terms: the cars would all be black and silver, and the sponsors would be Jack Daniels, Trojans, and Ruger Arms. What a grim dance it would be. No more Tide cars, no Clorox, no Sugar Smacks, and certainly not Gordon's Destroy World Hunger. They'd have to bring back all the cigarette advertising, the Skol Bandit car, the Winston Cup. The only current member of the field who might fit in without editing would be Kurt Busch, who runs the black 78 Denver Mattress car. Mr. Busch was unable to pass Danica's pink and green Go Daddy 10 for 16th place this past Sunday. Yee Haw.
While we didn't go up for the truck race, the hilarious doings of Harvick and his employer deserve some mention. Harvick called Childress' grandkids, the Dillon boys, sniveling rich kids who've gotten it all for free. Gramps was pissed off and snarled back "is not, are not, were not." Next day Harvick, who bites nails for snacks, apologized and blamed it on the heat of the race. Where's my youtube of Kyle pushing Harvick's car out of the way when Harvick tried to trap him at the end of Darlington, last year. It's never too genius to get into a fight with a guy behind the wheel of a 900 HP race car, when you're standing outside the window.
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
I used to get in arguments with folks around here who refused to see any indication of racism in the various Tea Party rallies and events which dotted the news starting in the months after Mr. Obama's election.
"We're just concerned with the deficit," they'd say. "We have to protect the country from people who would spend our future."
"What about those obviously racist signs?" I'd ask. "What about that picture of Mr. Obama dressed as a bushman, with a bone through his nose?"
"Balderdash! PIffle!! We can't keep out passerby at an open rally. It might have been David Segretti, who knows."
Here in NC our Republican candidate to replace Democratic Senator Kay Hagan next year just spoke at some right wing event in Raleigh. His topic was Nullification. If the Republicans could find Major Hoople, they'd surely run him.
Friday, October 18, 2013
Here's an example of a regular person with a regular job who was damaged to the soul by the vandalism of the pompous blowhards who just for the hell of it, and in the face of certain "defeat" (which in this case is nothing more than a synonym for "reality") were just okey-dokey with wrecking a million other people's lives. This lady cracked. She's probably lost her job. What the hell did Ted F**king Cruz, Louie Gomert, and the rest of these idiots get out of her destruction? Probably a lot of contributions from the millions of Americans who have no clue at all of how huge and complex America is, and who imagine the metaphor of budgeting quarters around the kerosene lamp in the kitchen of 1933 is exactly how things really work in Washington, DC.
Meanwhile, over at Edroso's place, there's a huge bunch of great comments concerning Edroso's observation that them GOPers sure do know how to pivot to victimhood on a Roosevelt dime. I liked particularly the observation that whilst the Koch money seemed endless, there was always an unspoken imperative: don't mess with the Money.
There is, however, a long-term strategy still at work in the party of the insurrectionists. If their deepest concern is with the fact of entitlement programs, it is still true that a real American default would probably destroy the entitlement programs. Along with a great lot of other important, on-going things. You can make your own list. The Representative from Virginia who opined last week that the American Revolution caused the "default" of the Colonies, but look how great that turned out, is suggesting that this is their ultimate strategy.
At least until the next Authoritarian figure emerges. Because the sad thing about the GOP is, it is no longer a party in a democratic system of government, but a body of people yearning for a big man on a white horse who will order them to do what he determines is best. As many a historian has observed, get rid of enough needed government services and such a man will emerge, pretty much of necessity.
Saturday, October 12, 2013
It's been some while since we spoke of the saga of the Houdahenians: a wild black momma cat first spotted in the dregs of winter skulking into a perimeter shed, a cautious investigation, three kittens discovered, and so forth. The boys are now cats, Puzzle, Wuzzy, and Mokey. Puzzle is damn near a panther, and confidently leaps from the loft directly into his cat perch, a crow's nest at the top of a rug-upholstered pole featuring as well an upholstered horizontal tube and a second lower perch. Actually, they all want that top perch, and take turns with it, some of the "turns" being fairly undemocratic, short-lived battles with sound. Puzzle tends to win, particularly if he's already there. I've yet to see him leap from the loft onto a current occupant, but it might and could have happened, as he is fine leaping from there onto my shoulders, lap, or head, as the thought moves him. He's also good at jumping up into the perch, with my legs or some other intermediate mount being a stage in the athleticism. He had best watch his weight if he's going to continue to enjoy all this flying about, and Puzzle is the one who will eat everyone's food, the guy who wants the last fry on his friend's plate in the commercial, and the guy who has no fussiness about his appetite.
Wuzzy is slightly smaller than Puzzle, and just as coal black. He's the most adjusted cat. He lets it all roll off his back. He likes the perch, but will get out of the way. He's the one who, back on New Years Day, found himself utterly stuck some 40+ feet off the ground in a small sourwood tree, the one who cried piteously from the tippy top branches, where he couldn't move, the one who got the tree guy with the big boom truck out on New Years Day to saw his way into our yard and close enough to ride the boom up to him and get him down--which he thought was surely going to happen eventually. We paid for that, as Wuzzy doesn't worry about this stuff we humans go insane about at the slightest provocation, "money." Wuzzy would not starve a 90-year-old military veteran who fought the genocidal-crazed German nation to make a cockamamie "point" about how making health care more affordable to more American citizens is in truth worse than the blight of American slavery. Wuzzy would if he cared to vote straight ticket Democratic, something now illegal in North Carolina, his home state, which he also bears no allegiance at all to. He was, after all, born in a little shed.
Mokey, Puzzle and Wuzzy's soft grey brother, was once the first born worrier, particularly on nights when momma was very late coming back from hunting, when it was cold and windy and the big white moon face stared into the shed window at all of them with a sinister smile, and branches scratched against the tin roof whilst they huddled together for warmth in the southwest corner. Mokey once ventured out, once climbed into my daughter's hair when she came to visit, and generally would walk up anyone's arm and ask for anything, while Puzzle kept his head down and looked away, and Wuzzy tended to have been dropped in some other spot by his mom, for reasons unknown. Now Mokey continues to worry, and to keep to a high corner, and to find food he liked last time tasting strange, and to cry for food until his people tire of opening new packets and just hope he'll get hungry enough to deal with it. In the dead of night, Mokey will climb into our bed and curl against my calf. He does not like, however, to be held and petted. Unless it is upside down, then it's really great for a while.
Momma, over time, became "EmmyLou." We caught her and got her neutered, and released her. She was a little panther then, and angry and wild, and vanished for several weeks whilst we put out food for her just in case, near the chicken house where she'd had the kittens. One day I saw her there again, eating. I moved her food up towards the house, and in a few days she was furtively eating on the porch. Next we tried putting the food just inside the door. She'd come in and eat, but scoot out if we came too close. For a long time she'd come in all the way to eat, with the boys chowing down in the living room, door closed. Then I'd open the kitchen door and she'd scoot out again. This was how all last winter went, and into the spring and summer. Eventually we had to catch her again for shot renewal, and after we'd accomplished that, we decided to keep her and all the boys inside, and she's fine with that and sleeps on the back of the couch, and speaks to us now and then, but will not allow touching,though she'll brush against your leg if you're preparing food, sometime.
Back in May I think it was, I came home from work one day and found, oh Jesus Lord, a tiny yellow kitten on the porch. He was wild and ran away, and starving. We got a have-a-heart trap and easily caught him with food. He ate and ate, allowed us to touch him almost instantly, and was shockingly thin. We didn't need any more cats. We had FOUR! We also knew that the boys would not like a newcomer, and might well kill a little critter that would look more like a rat to them. They were all hunters, and good at it. Cats mostly are not concerned with the ethics of killing things. Puzzle last spring brought me the head of a Cardinal, NC state bird may my sweet bird-watching mother rest in peace. Our population of lizards has drastically thinned. The squirrels moved quite out of the ceiling and have not returned. There are then, pluses and minuses.
We took the little yellow kitten to our county animal shelter. We were told he'd likely find an adoption. Within a week we were told, when we checked, that he was due to be eliminated that day due to overcrowding. Oh Jesus Lord. Through a complicated process we rescued the little yellow kitten from this fate, and as well he achieved a name, "Kirby." He's a sweet one. He unfailingly purrs when picked up. He is a good eater, is healthy, athletic, and very uninterested in returning to the wide outdoors. For the boys outdoors was a playground, and they sometimes pine for it, sitting at a window and watching for any movement. If it weren't for the damn wild dogs that drift around the woods and have killed a neighbor's cat, we'd keep letting them out to play. And the deer ticks they would bring in. Instead, they are inside. KIrby is fine with inside. He knows something they don't. Outside it's cold and wet and very very very hungry. Inside it's warm and soft and interesting enough, and there's never a time when there's nothing at all to eat.
Kirby kept growing. We played a game of moving him from one area of the house to the other. The boys would be where he wasn't. Kirby was lonely, and more and more wanted to meet his brothers. He missed his family from long ago, whoever they were. We have no idea at all where he came from, but he does look like the father of the boys. Just sayin'. Finally a couple of weeks ago Kirby burst out of the bedroom and in amongst the others. He was not so much smaller than them now. He was about 6 times more energetic. He was annoying, but they had smelled him and knew he was here. He tended to chase them, not the reverse. He had the sense to lie down and exhibit brief submissive poses if they became overly annoyed. Then he'd jump back up and pounce on one or the other some more. After they'd eat they'd all tend to go lie down, Kirby not so far from the others. One night last week we saw Kirby and Wuzzy sleeping side by side in our bed. Of course it was Wuzzy. One time last week I watched Kirby annoy Wuzzy to the point of getting a growl and a whack on the noggin. Then they both spotted and hunted a bug, jointly. Brothers.
So it is, a rainy Saturday, October 12, 2013. Kirby is a Houdahenian.
[all photos in this post (c) Libby Hicks; EmmyLou chose not to be photogenic for this episode. A salute and thank you to the 81st Infantry "Wildcat" Division for their service. They were the first American division to wear a division insignia in combat. Much more about them can be found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/81st_Infantry_Division_%28United_States%29 ]
Saturday, October 5, 2013
Charles Pierce nails it. http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/donald-segretti-ratfking-100413
The American voter is still, for the most part, too credulous to really believe that his own Congressperson would be as cynical as Segretti and Chapin and Rove and Atwater and George W. Bush. Meanwhile, up there where the power lives, there is serious consideration to trading the Keystone pipeline approval for the hostages their own Representatives have taken on behalf of the Keystone pipeline and all the other big time, big money interests that have bought and paid for a majority of the House of Representatives. "My" Congressperson these days is Ms Renee Ellmers. She got her job after my former Congressperson, Bob Etheridge, got Tea Bagged just before the election he lost. Here's a clip of the particular ratfucking in question, suspended in the amber that is youtube forever.
Interesting that there's even an ad attached to this bit of mischief. If it makes money I guess that's the be all/end all now. Anyways, Ms Ellmers actually made some statements back in August that were somewhat conciliatory concerning the Affordable Care Act. She was, after all, before she was utterly seduced by power and money, a nurse. Apparently they called her on the carpet about her August remarks. She's securely back on the train these days, supporting whatever it is the House thinks it's doing, even if, like a lot of her colleagues, she really doesn't quite understand what it is they're doing.
"It's not a damn game!" Boehner said yesterday. He's good at exemplification. Here he exemplifies the horrible truth that the Republican Party is the party of denial and projection. The other truth is, people can say contradictory things in the same paragraph. It's not that the contradictions actually vanish. Logic is eternal, although logic must at some distant point conform to the things Einstein perceived about the real world in which we really live. But in the day to day, the sad fact is that the American voter is still too credulous to believe that the august Speaker of the House of Representatives would assert that "it's not a damn game!" in the point blank face of the blazing, exploding sun fact that, it's a game.
Aren't those pyramids beautiful in the sunset, as we punt the Nile to Alexandria. See what Nixon's doing there, in the photo. If you didn't know, you'd think he'd just won an election.
Update: Congressperson Ellmers has now reversed her position that she will take her paycheck because, darn it, she needs it. The wind is probably rising in her (and my) Congressional district, perhaps due to the coming tropical storm. It is difficult to ride the greased pole in a gale.
Thursday, October 3, 2013
The political theatre in DC yesterday at the WW II Memorial was indeed a theatre of the absurd. One only hopes most people, and certainly veterans, can see through it. There was one tiny bit of reality--the thing to do is focus first on that. Then the rest will fall into perspective.
Mr. Priebus holds his fluttering check before the assembled press corps, promising that the GOP will, themselves, fund five full-time guards for the World War II Monument. Wowser. Five. Whole. Guards. If he'd had a big cardboard check it would have looked better, more "real." If by real you mean bullshit. No doubt Mr. Rove is on the case for the next performance. I also was struck by one Congressman who stated that it was just so appalling that this Memorial, which was what all our World War II veterans had fought for, would be closed by Mr. Obama. (Over on the Blaze teevee channel some commenter speculated that the government couldn't "really" be closed because someone or other must have put those baracades out there, and that someone must have been paid by the government, so how could it really be shut down? What geniuses.)
My father-in-law just passed his 90th year. He's having health problems, including memory issues and a cancer issue which is becoming difficult to treat without some very serious side-effects. He was in the 35th "Santa Fe" Infantry, the Wagon Wheel Division, mostly from the midwest, but he was from eastern NC. He fought in France beginning about a month after D-Day, was up around Bastogne, was amongst the liberators of the slave and death camps in Germany. He's never wanted to go back to Europe, and has been haunted for most of his very constructive and productive life by two moments in the war where he mysteriously survived while his comrades perished. If you asked him--and I'll speak for him here as he's my friend--he did not fight for the goddam World War II Memorial. His friends did not die for the goddam memorial either. I'm sure he and almost all of his comrades in arms would be insulted and offended by the political use of their brothers in this obvious bit of theatre and bullshit yesterday, put on by the likes of Michele Bachmann and Reince Priebus, neither of whom had anything at all to do with World War II.
One would hope, probably vainly, that Mr. Obama would send the US marshals to arrest the hired GOP guards. It's not their World War II Memorial. It's ours. The GOP has no authority to take possession of it with a few hired Pinkertons, although this is certainly the ugly old world they want to revive. In the Tea Party world the monied are free to hire and build whatever private army they want, and, as was done far too often, to shoot and otherwise intimidate any lowly 47 percenter who objected. Just go read about Joe Hill sometime. That's the future they're trying to build. It's the government that stands in their way. That's why they've shut it down.
Want to know what my father-in-law and his comrades did. Here's a first hand history:
My father-in-law trained at Camp Butner, in North Carolina. He rode in a Liberty ship to England, a voyage he recalls with disgust and some wry amusement, describing days of sloshing through vomit from many sea-sick young soldiers before arriving at his destination. He lived the entire European tour with the Santa Fe Division, start to finish. It is really revolting to watch these preening Tea Party congresspersons, none of whom lived any of this history of 70 years ago, try to co-opt true American heroes for their own political, misguided ends. And worse, of course, is the plain fact that the goals of the Tea Party and their wealthy backers are at odds with the well-being of the living World War II veterans, now in their late 80s and above. There is already talk of limiting Social Security rate increases as a sop to the insurrectionists. One can only hope that enough voters will finally see through this incompetent, immoral game and start electing responsible people to Congress.
Here's a short excerpt from "Lone Sentry." I hope you will read the whole booklet:
The division's first casualty was recorded that night. While Co. H, 137th, was moving into position, a shell killed Pvt. Owen J. McBride, an ammunition bearer.
Just before dawn July 11, more than 200 division guns and supporting Corps artillery pounded Nazi positions in a thunderous barrage. Then, at 0600, infantrymen stormed "over the top" of hedgerows.
The 137th rushed along the area following Highway 3 where the Germans awaited the attack on a small road leading from the highway to the Vire Canal. Dungeon-deep foxholes, connected by underground tunnels and heavily protected by mines, lined the road.
The regiment lunged forward with bayonet, grenade and point-blank fire. Green troops fought like veterans as they punched along the narrow road until reaching La Meauffe. There they ran up against Germans barricaded in houses and shops, where every building was a converted pillbox. Yank artillery crashed in and levelled the strongest points with deadly accurate salvos. Doughs rushed other positions, driving Nazis from the town.
The 137th continued up the road to "Purple Heart Corner," pushed the Germans from a solid stone chateau used as Gestapo headquarters, then took the Chateau of St. Gilles, key defense in the area. When Col. Layng was wounded by machine gun fire during the battle, Col. Robert Sears took command. Lt. Col. John N. Wilson, 219th FA Bn. CO, was killed.
Here's a brief biography of the commanding general of the 35th, Paul Baade, who led the division for its whole tour in Europe, start to finish.
You will note, perhaps, that General Baade, like most World War II veterans, died before the World War II Monument on the Mall was even conceived or constructed. In fact, the Monument was to some degree a response to the Vietnam Memorial, which in its stark honesty about the true nature of war was upsetting to many who revered the millions of World War II veterans. Certainly the "greatest generation" does indeed deserve a lasting monument to their sacrifice and service. However, they did not serve and sacrifice to achieve a memorial, as the insurrectionists have asserted. The last thing survivors of World War II need, in their fading golden years, is to find themselves pawns in a heartless publicity stunt being pulled by Tea Party politicians who wouldn't have the guts to get off the boats in Normandy, 70 years ago.
Postscript: Haven't heard much about this monument being closed by the shutdown:
(Hat tip to the Rude Pundit for the find.)
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
It is already obvious, after only one day of the Federal Government shutdown, that many forces are focusing on driving President Obama from his logically unassailable position: the Affordable Health Care act was legally passed, has passed muster with the Supreme Court, and was a center piece of the late Presidential election, which the Republican candidate who campaigned on repealing the law, lost handily. The current Republican campaign to nonetheless remove the law from operation thus involves a kind of legal insurrection, with the hundreds of thousands of Federal employees and operations being held hostage as leverage.
This situation is, at least to me, obvious. Yet much media reporting is already describing the shutdown as an impasse in which both the Republicans and President Obama are equally culpable. Last night on MSNBC, during breaks in the Hayes and Maddow coverage of the story, appeared a soothing ad shot in soft focus of John Huntsman and Evan Bayh, both described below their faces as "governors," who appealed in the ad for compromise, for some middle ground solution which involved postponing implementation of the Affordable Care law until unemployment statistics reached the arbitrary percentage of 6.5. This cliche of balance, which is pretty much the standard frame in which all conflicts between the two parties are placed by most of the media most of the time, insinuates itself into coverage easily. On NPR yesterday there was an interview story featuring various people affected by the shutdown. A woman operating a Head Start program (I think it was) got to make the usual, commonsense, argument: "I wish those folks in Washington would get together on this."
Politically, Mr. Obama's absolutely correct position is hanging on his own fortitude, his ability to withstand a mounting din of criticism not only from the right, but from the center and the left as well. Politically, Mr. Obama has but four Democratic votes in the Senate to spare. The pressure on Democratic Senators is intense. When I went to our local TV station's website yesterday to read simple AP reports of various aspects of the shutdown (and for that matter, sports stories, and stories having nothing at all to do with the shutdown), I was greeted with an ad being run by the Heritage Foundation which over and over pleaded with me to write my Democratic Senator, Kay Hagan, and tell her to save the country from the hated Affordable Care Act.
Being a Democratic Senator in North Carolina is these days, I'm sure, something of a lonely outpost. Another news story on WRAL reported Attorney General Holder's decision to sue NC over our horrible new voting procedure law. Down the page were stories on our state government's decision to reject federal grants to aid in water testing at fracking sites, a decision which the public defense by the agency doing the rejecting was described as both "combative" and "defensive"--by someone described as an "environmentalist" of course. Kay Hagan is a long-time successful North Carolina politician, and may well manage to brush aside these pressures. I might just send her a case of Tums, nonetheless.
As has been written in many places, the Republican Insurrection, a grand hostage-taking of hundreds of thousands of ordinary people simply doing their jobs, if successful, will have the long term effect of diminishing the office of the Presidency. This, moreover, is a more and more obvious long term goal of the Republicans. Being anti democratic, the Republican Party finds forever having to argue its case with a voting public it mostly disrespects (see, e.g., "47% of them will never vote for us,..." Willard "Mitt" Romney, May, 2012)an odious chore. Much better to incessantly call the Democratic Party the "Democrat Party" and continuously roil the underlying afflictions of racism, sexism, and anti-union sentiment which already keep much of the voting public from seeing clearly whose candidate is whose. Much better to legislate new rules for voting which have the practical effect of disenfranchising groups proven by scientific analysis of previous elections to have trended towards Democratic candidates, whilst at the same time perfecting the scientific art of the gerrymander so that it takes three Democratic votes to equal one Republican, when it comes to electing representatives.
But just wait and see what happens when an authoritarian figure emerges in 2016. Republicans don't much like democracy, but they love authority. Their last best President was, after all, the Supreme Allied Commander and first Five Star General.
Further reading, should you desire:
Also, for a rather abstract diagram of something to the far side of tomorrow:
A tale of two cities.
Tuesday, October 1, 2013
Back in simpler times, when people were happy with things the way they were, there was a concept of "insurrection," meaning a raging mob with fire brands marching up the capitol steps and bursting through the doors. Usually the cowing legislators therein would run like rats, and it would be likely that one or two would be tarred and feathered and literally ridden out of town on a rail. In this simple time some legislators thought it wise to codify this idea, "insurrection." The whole point of having a legal government, they opined, was order. There were ways to get things done. Whilst one might argue in the court of yellow journalism that tarring and feathering was democracy in action, particularly if the jackass deserved it, cooler heads realized that down that path, if you followed the feathers and the blood, lay anarchy. An "insurrectionist" became a kind of criminal, and would sit in the dock with the jackass who thought it a poem to cry "fire, fire," in a crowded theatre.
These are not simpler times. Highly qualified Princeton lawyers have analysed the situation in their meta classes and realized that pretty much most everything is, in a sense, as Einstein might have put it, relative. So it is that after years of rhetorical exercises of such art and skill that most ordinaries would melt quite away in but a morning, an entire political party has now been utterly seduced, and lies swooning on the divan in the sun room, akimbo. Leaning against the mantle, brandy in hand, cigar wafting pure Napoleonic manly essence into the late afternoon light that streams through the French doors from the rose garden, stands our new leader. He says nothing, only smiles. Later his devoted mistresses explain that checks and balances were always at the ready, and that the machinery was made for this too, its own timely inversion. The silly people who stand at the locked gates, or wait for the unmade automatic deposits, or watch the only place left to put a little aside flutter down from the heights to melt away their meager "nest eggs" (for who but takers and losers even need "nest eggs," why next they will be darning socks, and next year patching saucepans). They never had anything to do with it in the first place, this "democracy." It only kept them occupied, whilst the real decisions were being made elsewhere.
Thus is an insurrection "legalized," same as it ever was. Re-read "Richard III." You may have to do it in the daytime if the lights go out. Have no fear. Someone will explain, eventually, that this too is only "natural."