Monday, October 15, 2018

Scary time

Yes, it is.  Teabag Trumpette Amy Kremer gives us the quotation of the day.  It seems an occult book store in Brooklyn is hosting a spell-casting this weekend, and Amy is horrified:  "It's a scary time right now.  Now we've got witches that are placing a hex on Brett Kavanaugh."  No, they're trying to increase their foot-traffic with clever, free publicity, thanks, Amy!  The magick (I believe that's the preferred spelling) will have no more power than Pat Robertson's promise to turn away the wrath of Hurricane Florence through his personal relationship with Big Sky Wizard.  Of course, if Mr. Justice Gangbang reports for work on Monday only seven inches tall, I am prepared to apologize and publish a retraction, and maybe order a new copy of Drawing Down the Moon from Catland Books, 987 Flushing Avenue.

It's one of those days when there is an embarrassment of quotation riches.  Tucker Carlson whines that he can no longer dine out because of people "screaming 'Fuck you!'  It just wrecks your meal."  Where the hell is he eating, the New School cafeteria?  Tucky, you can go to an overpriced Maison de la Casa House (thanks, Bud Trillin) with tassels on the menu, or you can stay home and eat one of the frozen TV dinners that made it possible for you and your family to avoid work forever.  Or just grow a pair and don't let yourself get chased out like a common Ted Cruz.

Oh, the great "Judge" Jeanine Pirro has taken to calling Democrats "Demon rats."  Isn't that adorable?  Would it be uncivil to hope she patronizes Joan Rivers's plastic surgeon?

"I'm the president and you're not," was the most intelligible sentence uttered by Himself in an interview patiently conducted by Lesley Stahl.  She had asked why children have to be locked in cages or consigned to tents in the desert.  She also chased him all over the landscape trying to get straight answers about climate change ("scientists have a political agenda") and NATO ("I know more than [James] Mattis").  Watch it if you want to.  Closed captioning may help.

It's a scary time for journalists.  Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi who lives in the United States and writes for the Washington Post, went into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul two weeks ago and never came out.  (Wonderful things, security cameras.)  Khashoggi had been critical of his country's government and its crown prince Mohammad bin Salman, who has been quoted as saying slumlord-in-law Jared Kushner is "in [his] pocket."  It looks like s-i-l provides him with the names of dissidents and other troublemakers.  Jared's wife's daddy has promised to get to the bottom of this, but also believes "rogue killers" made him disappear.  A genie and a magic lamp are suspected.  Also, Saudi oil might suddenly get more expensive, if you know what I mean and I think you do, and no more playing with The Orb.  Get it?  The bully becomes the bullied.

"I'm the most bullied person in the world," pouted Melania Trump, and honestly, until the Brett-hex quote came along I was going to open with that one.  She went all the way to Africa dressed like the Englishwoman in a Tarzan movie who has to be rescued from the savages, she hugged some steam-cleaned children and looked at some animals, but were Americans grateful?  Did they nominate her for a Nobel Peace Prize or greet her at the airport like a championship team?  No, they criticized her for wearing a pith-helmet in former colonies like Ghana, for spending a fat ten minutes touring the places where captives were loaded onto slave ships, and for being an oblivious, privileged bimbo who married as much money as she could find and by the way, lied about being a college graduate.  See?  Criticism, bullying, harassment, assault, genocide, it's all the same word in Slovenia, I guess.

Sheldon Adelson gave $20 million to the Trump campaign, and it has come up cherries.  Adelson stands to make $25 billion a year if Japan grants him one of three licenses to open a casino there, and Trump ("I remember Pearl Harbor!") is working overtime to make it happen.  We don't know what Shelly said when Donny gave him the good news, but I'm sure he was suitably grateful.  And that's how you drain the swamp.

You may recall the specific Hitler Hootenanny (I don't) where Trump challenged Elizabeth Warren to prove her Native American ancestry.  He implied the DNA test was one of those disgusting gynecological procedures that real men don't want to think about; he also promised to pay a million dollars if she turned out to be "an Indian."  This week the Senator released the results, from a geneticist at Stanford -- she is, in fact, part Cherokee.  Apparently DNA, routinely used for everything from solving crimes to identifying the remains of soldiers, is "junk science," according to expert Kellyanne Conway ("I haven't looked at the test...I'm not interested").  Coincidentally, it seems that William Wages, brother-in-law of House Majority Leader and Raving Trumpite Kevin McCarthy, got a lucrative government contract by claiming to be part Cherokee -- a claim disputed by the Cherokee Nation.  And that's how you drain the swamp.

Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, died today.  My comment has been deleted for its extreme incivility.  I hate Microsoft.

 


















Sunday, October 14, 2018

Lonely hearts

The London Review of Books is famous for its mordantly, often outrageously funny personal ads, some of which have been collected in books.  So when I read this one, I didn't know what to think:

"Our client is a very interesting and literary woman in her 60s living in London.  Her interests are the Arts especially literature and classical music.  She would love to meet a like-minded woman to share her interests with and is open to meeting someone either in London or abroad.  Contact Cleese, Parsons & Crun* 020 ---- ---- or email Suzanne @ ...I look forward to hearing from you."

Who puts in an ad like this?  (Interested in just about anything, will meet up anywhere.)  More to the point, who hands the job off to her solicitors?  Why is it so...dull?  Why is it making me so sad?

Of course, it's the LRB.  Could be a giant put-on, not someone who wants her personal life sorted out by lawyers.  Yeah, that must be it.

Another two years of this madness and my sense of humor will be as dead as Napoleon's horse.




*Not a real law firm, but it could have been.

Sunday, October 07, 2018

Treason!



And nobody told him about the toilet paper on his shoe.

The Resistance is spreading!

Friday, October 05, 2018

Prize day

Congratulations to:

Dr. Denis Mukwege of the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Nadia Murad, Yazidi activist.  He is a gynecological surgeon who treats the victims of gang-rape in Congo's unending civil war.  She escaped from Islamic State, whose thugs repeatedly raped her, and works to free other Yazidi (Christian) women still in captivity.  They will share the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize.  The committee's timing could not be better, as the United States Senate will probably vote tomorrow to place a drunken, lying rapist on the Supreme Court until he dies of liver failure.  Every single one who does so should be publicly shamed and shunned forever.

Rev. William Barber, recipient of a MacArthur Foundation grant.  The news reached him in Chicago as he was being arrested in front of McDonald's headquarters, leading a demonstration to demand a minimum wage of $15.  He also wants Medicare extended to everyone, leading some North Carolinians to brand him a "terrorist."  And now a "genius," too, and all while suffering from a form of spinal arthritis that makes even standing difficult.  What did you do today?

The family of Laquan McDonald, the seventeen-year-old who was killed by Jason Van Dyke of the Chicago Police.  A jury* has found Van Dyke guilty of second-degree murder and sixteen counts of assault, one for each bullet he fired into the teenager.  It took years, but the family and supporters persisted.  May the McDonalds now find peace.

And Clarence Thomas, who will no longer be the most worthless piece of shit on the Supreme Court.  Have a Coke and a smile, Clarence!



*Eleven of the jurors were white.  It shouldn't be necessary to state that, but apparently it is.






Thursday, October 04, 2018

Left behind

Charles P. Pierce writes:

"I was informed by reliable government sources that at 2:18 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, I would be receiving a text message from a notorious public sociopath.  It never happened.  Who do I call to report this?  Is someone in the Deep State using me for bait?"

I never got the big official message either.  When this became clear, I flashed back to the joke Woody Allen used to tell about his draft classification:  "In the event of war, I'm a hostage."  And in the event of national emergency -- whatever that may mean -- I am evidently a statistic.  Knowing that an eminent journalist was also unnotified makes me feel less lonely.  

Besides, this is a bunch who separate very young children from their parents and lose track of them; who tear up treaties like losing tickets at a racetrack; who pollute the earth with the mad abandon of dogs having their first encounter with snow; who respond to natural disasters like Laurel and Hardy without the well-meaning sweetness.  Why would anyone imagine they could make a phone call without fucking it up? 

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

Self-eating bacteria

I'd like to think -- no, I need to think -- that Donnie Degenerate stepped on his mushroom last night in Mississippi Goddam (as Nina Simone indelibly named it).  Turn off the sound, I implore you, and look at the slack-jawed faces around him as he mocks a victim of sexual assault.  They look a lot like their grandparents, in the foreground grinning into the camera while a body hangs from a tree behind them.  Deeper in the background, out of focus, you can just make out the marble statue of some seditious general on a horse.  So much beauty.

I had a feeling that, after being laughed out of the United Nations by real leaders, the bloated orange slob would seek emotional comfort food in the Incest Belt.  And that was just a warm-up -- wait till he gets to Texas to stir up the mob for Canada Cruz.  Staring at defeat, Teddy has chosen to forget that the slob called his wife ugly and accused his father of murder.  Teddy's a real mensch.  So the slob will warn another mob of mouth-breathers that young (white) men are the real victims when these tramps can ruin their lives over a little assault.  The slob has already forgotten that women have the vote.  

The three "mavericks" Flake, Collins and Murkowski, have pronounced themselves troubled, even "appalled," by their Leader's obscene performance.  Of course, what they say to CNN doesn't matter.  All that matters is what they say when the clerk calls their names and they have to answer "Yes" or "No" to putting the drunken rapist on the Supreme Court.  The excuses they make afterward will also be worth less than a spoonful of spit.  Mitch McConnell (R-Kinfucky) has promised to ram the vote through this week, so we'll find out if even one of them can withstand the twitter-storm, the Blightbart outrage and the wrath of Lindsey Graham (like being pecked by a day-old duckling but much funnier).  If Brett-bro doesn't get his candy because the orange slob couldn't keep his mouth shut, well, that will be the best joke of all.    

Monday, October 01, 2018

Twilight zones

There is a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to man...pit of man's fears...yadda yadda yadda…

Let's dip into the this-can't-be-happening file, shall we?

According to the CDC, the number of American babies born with syphilis is at a 20-year high.  Overall, the United States is ranked twentieth out of the twenty-one wealthiest countries for infant mortality; only New Zealand is worse.  (Really, New Zealand?  Say, didn't your prime minister just have a baby?)  So of course Melania Trump is off to Africa to spread her message of "Be Best" and show off her new double-D kidneys to Egypt and the shithole countries of Malawi, Kenya and Ghana.  She will enlighten them on the wonders of American health care and explain to the president of Egypt what the hell her husband meant by "I love the Bangles!"  (The only thing he knew about Egypt was the 1987 dance hit "Walk Like an Egyptian."  There is speculation that he believes it to be their national anthem.)

Melania's husband has decided he likes press conferencing even better than tweeting, because he is absolutely great at it and also wittier than that Kennedy guy, who by the way got plenty of pussy, believe me.  Today he was out in the rose garden charming the pants off reporters.  Like Cecilia Vega of ABC, who tried to ask about the Kavanaugh debacle and got the clever riposte, "I know you're not thinking.  You never do."  See, because she's a girl and the Republicans don't have enough problems with women, all of their own making.  Also the lying media, and she's probably from Mexico like Judge Curiel.  Then he made a fib about an unnamed senator "on the other side" who has done very very very bad things.  The details are filed with his "hundred" pictures of Comey and Mueller making out.

The most surreal moment of the week may have been Jeff Flake's appearance at the Global Citizen concert in Central Park.  Flake is being hailed as a conquering hero for arranging a slight speed-bump in the path of Brett "I Like Beer" Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, after voting to send his nomination to the full Senate like the supine Republican toady he has always been.  Now that he's leaving the Senate, Flake will even stand next to a Democrat under a banner that includes the word "global."  You're a fucking profile in courage, Jeff.

Kellyanne Conway is claiming to have been a victim of sexual assault.  If it's true it's terrible, and if it's a lie it's worse.  Sarah Sanders, anything to share?

Track Palin -- that's his legal name -- has been arrested for domestic violence assault and resisting arrest.  Apologists claim he suffers from post-traumatic stress, although he spent his Army career as a driver for visiting VIPs and never saw combat.   I think somebody didn't raise him right.

Timing is everything, and so there is an outcry because Roman Polanski has finally begun work on J'Accuse, another movie about the Alfred Dreyfus case.  Polanski has been a fugitive from American justice since 1978, when he pleaded guilty to one charge involving the rape of a young girl and then fled to Europe.  Since then he has directed Death and the Maiden, Tess, The Pianist and The Ghost Writer, among other films, without incident.  Maybe the problem is that Dreyfus was a man falsely accused of a crime.  Maybe Polanski suffers from post-traumatic stress, having barely survived the Holocaust as a child.  He and Bill Cosby have been thrown out of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, along with an actor named Carmine Caridi, whose crime was sharing "screeners" (the DVDs provided free to voting members) with a friend.  So that's where the Academy's red line is.  Where is the Senate's?

Speaking of actors, John Putnam, professional Herman Melville impersonator, has died at 82.  He will be missed.  I assume.

Rachel Mitchell, the Arizona prosecutor imported by the Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee to be their beard representative in questioning Christine Blasey Ford, was spotted tossing back some brews with Chuck Grassley's staff in a Washington establishment.  Apparently she, too, likes beer.  She presented a five-page report stating that a "reasonable prosecutor" would not indict Kavanaugh, although the FBI has barely begun its investigation.  Then she collected her check and buggered off back to Joe Arpaio country.

Speaking of buggery...see, you thought I was going to move on Lindsey Graham.  Actually I would be glad if people pointed out what a piece of shit he is without going there.  Homophobia isn't attractive anywhere on the political spectrum, and we're supposed to be better than that.

I wish I could end this on a hopeful note -- it's only four in the afternoon, no way to know what crazy shit is still to come -- but will you settle for a goofy one?  Trump told one of his paste-eater rallies last week that we were this close to war with North Korea (not the Little Rocket Man taunts, not "my button works," but somehow Obama's fault), but he met Kim Jong-un and "we fell in love."  That's a direct quote.  Not The Onion.  I actually heard it in that feckless Queens whine, my own self.  "He wrote me beautiful letters," he went on, while the MAGAs muttered, "Did I just hear that?"  So no need to hold joint exercises or keep all those expensive troops in South Korea.  They fell in love.

I need a beer.