Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Vatican vs. Gertrude Stein (Part X)

THE VATICAN: It is important to be clear that the political choices faced by citizens not only have an impact on general peace and prosperity but also may affect the individual’s salvation. Similarly, the kinds of laws and policies supported by public officials affect their spiritual well-being. A kind of cultural relativism exists today, evident in the conceptualization and defence of an ethical pluralism, which sanctions the decadence and disintegration of reason and the principles of the natural moral law. Furthermore, it is not unusual to hear the opinion expressed in the public sphere that such ethical pluralism is the very condition for democracy. As a result, citizens claim complete autonomy with regard to their moral choices, and lawmakers maintain that they are respecting this freedom of choice by enacting laws which ignore the principles of natural ethics and yield to ephemeral cultural and moral trends, as if every possible outlook on life were of equal value.

GERTRUDE STEIN: There is no pope.

Monday, November 26, 2007

My Index

Percentage of cats asleep in bathtubs who say they are Democrat-leaning and Republican-leaning, respectively: 70, 16

Number of years since this poll began in 1990 in which the gap favoring either party was so large: 0

Percentage of registered voters who think that Joe Lieberman punishes us because we do not love him enough: 93

Percentage of Chicago residents who believed this spring that squirrels tasted either "good" or "excellent": 84

Percentage of U.S. citizens overall who believed this: 73

Percentage of shopping-mall and party Santas who believe that Glenn Beck should have surrendered to U.S. Marshals for torturing and killing Pit Bulls in a bloody dogfighting ring: 54

Number of Christmas trees FedExed last year to U.S. troops instead of body armor: 11,854

Number of months it takes the Pentagon to ask for repayment of enlistment bonuses from severely wounded veterans: 6

Number of seconds it takes to lick clean a bowl of French Vanilla yogurt on the floor: 32

Thursday, November 22, 2007

List XVIII: Abraham Bolden

1. Secret Service Agent Abraham Bolden was arrested when he arrived in Washington to testify before the Warren Commission.

2. Bolden planned to explain to the Warren Commission:
1) the Secret Service's poor record of protecting President Kennedy prior to and during November 22, 1963

2) the plots to assassinate President Kennedy in Chicago (November 2, 1963) and Tampa (November 18, 1963), both of which resembled the successful assassination in Dallas on November 22. In Chicago, for instance, the assassination was to be carried out by a four-man Cuban exile hit squad, using high-powered rifles as the limousine was forced to slow down to make a hairpin left turn on the Jackson exit of the Northwest Expressway (now the Kennedy Expressway)
3. "The president's life was in grave danger because of the inefficiency of security around him, too many weaknesses. When that bullet struck the head of the president, it struck me, too, because I saw it coming," Bolden said to Chuck Goudie of WLS-TV, Chicago.

4. According to Lamar Waldron and Thom Hartmann, "It took two trials, but Bolden was finally convicted on counterfeiting charges based only on the testimony of two criminals: one of whom Bolden had previously arrested, and one who later admitted committing perjury against Bolden."

5. Matthew Smith writes that this second criminal, Joseph Spagnoli, later confessed he lied to the jury to convict Bolden at the request, allegedly, of Prosecutor Richard Sikes.

6. Despite Bolden's exemplary reputation and stellar record of service, he spent six years in prison -- "sometimes in solitary confinement after he would try to draw attention to his case" (Waldron and Hartmann).

7. Click here for more information on the effort to clear Bolden's name.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Glenn Beck's Courage, Even Though He Killed All Those Dogs

I agree with Glenn Beck's decision to surrender to U.S. Marshals three weeks before he was to be sentenced for torturing and killing Pit Bulls in a bloody dogfighting ring. What's that scratching noise in the radiator? Glenn Beck admitted in his pro-victory written plea that he helped kill six to eight pit bulls and supplied money for gambling on the fights.

Even though he tortured and killed all those dogs, Glenn Beck still has the courage to continue his radio and television broadcasts from prison.

"We're all one America," he said last night on his pro-victory television broadcast, "and just because I disagree with you doesn't mean you hate America and I love America. We all love America. We just disagree on how we should function."

As for the tragic Southern California wildfires, he said, "I think there is a handful of people who hate America. Unfortunately for them, a lot of them lost their homes in a forest fire last month."

Glenn Beck shouldn't have accepted that plea deal for torturing and killing all those dogs. What's scratching inside the radiator? What clicks inside the wall? Everyone knows that Glenn Beck tortured and killed those dogs because one of them, named Caesar, was a super-intelligent American Pit Bull who had arrived in a spaceship from the future, when Pit Bulls would rule the earth and enslave all humans.

Only the pro-victory Glenn Beck had the courage to save the planet from super-intelligent American Pit Bulls from the future and Hillary Clinton. "I think we have found our Antichrist and our next president," Glenn Beck said, adding, "There's something in her voice that just drives me insane."

Monday, November 19, 2007

At the Overlook Hotel

Shimmy, we've missed you so.

Go away, Grady Girls. Go back to your miserable hotel.

We can't wait to see you again.

Leave me alone.

Come play with us, Shimmy.

I do what I want.

Come play with us, Shimmy. Forever. And ever. And ever.

Go back, Grady Girls. Back to your malefic, blubbering Den of Spies.

Tony and Shelly are taking you to Uptown Animal Hospital very soon. We can't wait to see you.

Will they ride me on back of their pretty little bourgeois bicycles, Grady Girls? They sold their car last year. You can't stop me.

Very soon they'll take a cab, Shimmy. Forever and ever.

They won't open the back door for me. They wouldn't let me out for Veteran's Day to Walter Reed Army Hospital to eat lice, cockroaches, mice, and spiders. Rusks of vermin from the Walter Reed pantry melt in my indefatigable mouth. I stare at the back door knob but nothing happens. Nobody can stop me.

What flavor of yogurt do you want, Shimmy?

French Vanilla.

Then French Vanilla it shall be.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Rule of Law is Literally Made from Yarn and String

Boston and Long Beach:
"Thanks, Veterans!
Put your hands
behind your back!"

Alberto Gonzales:
"The rule of law
is literally made from
yarn and string"

Seriously, don't
touch me today

"A dreadlocked wig
and a prisoner's outfit
could cost her the job"

Genetically altered
rank, blustery,
arrogant, delicious

Unless you want
to pull back
a bloody
wrist stump

"Then there'd be
no strife or struggle
and we'd all be 17"

If I wanted to be touched,
I wouldn't fall asleep
under the bed

The Book of Revelations
was written literally
hundreds of millions
of years ago

What's that noise
behind the 6000-sheet
box of laser print paper

Katharine Seelye,
reminding you
that John McCain
should not
call Hillary Clinton
a "bitch,"
but if he does,
it's only
to remind you
that you might
not want
to endure
the "animosity
and polarization" that,
Katharine Seelye reminds you,
is Hillary Clinton's
fault anyway

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Episode Twenty: "The Rime of the Ancient Waterboarder" (Part 2 of 2)

MARY: Rhoda, this is crazy. How can you say that Judge Michael Mukasey is a "liberal judicial activist"?

RHODA: When it comes to torture, I'm a strict constructionist myself. An "originalist." We must observe judicial restraint and fidelity to the originally intended meaning of the law.

MARY: I smack the last housefly of summer.

RHODA: Remember Yukio Asano?

MARY: That noise on the windowsill is Charles Schumer.

RHODA: Think about it, Mary. Remember, in May 1947, the U.S. Army declared waterboarding a war crime.

MARY: Yukio Asano was charged with "Violation of the Laws and Customs of War."

RHODA: The Army said that Asano "did willfully and unlawfully mistreat and torture prisoners of war."

MARY: But, Rhoda, this doesn't mean waterboarding is "torture" in 2007.

RHODA: According to the United States Army, "willful and unlawful mistreatment" is: "beating using hands, fists, club; kicking; water torture; burning using cigarettes; strapping on a stretcher head downward."

MARY: Dianne Feinstein says that Mukasey's answers to the Senate Judiciary Committee were "crisp and succinct, and demonstrated a strong, informed and independent mind."

RHODA: Dianne Feinstein and Charles Schumer are playing fetch with mik-bottle-cap rings on the White House lawn.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Episode Nineteen: "The Rime of the Ancient Waterboarder" (Part 1 of 2)

RHODA: I understand why the Democrats are caving on Judge Michael Mukasey's nomination for Attorney General.

MARY: Because Dianne Feinstein and Charles Schumer eat wet food the White House dumps in a bowl on the floor?

RHODA: They're not cowed by the Mukasey nomination, Mary.

MARY: Of course not. The Democrats are "idle as a painted ship upon a painted ocean."

RHODA: Mary, think about it. Judge Michael Mukasey is one of them. He's a liberal judicial activist. He's pink down to his underwear.

MARY: Squirrels eat through screen doors and flop, scolding, into my mouth. Joe Lieberman punishes us because we do not love him enough.

RHODA: Mukasey is your typical liberal. That's what I mean. He's a judicial activist, not an impartial judge.

MARY: Mukasey immobilizes cab drivers and illegally rendered suspects on their backs, with their heads inclined downward, and pours water over their faces to simulate drowning. How is that "activism," Rhoda?

RHODA: Maybe that's not torture. I can see what he means -- from the liberal judicial activist point of view.

MARY: Maybe it wasn't torture when Iranian students conducted mock executions of U.S. hostages in 1979 and 1980.

RHODA: It's all relative, Mary. If Mukasey were a strict constructionist, his testimony on waterboarding would be entirely different.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

"Let Him Tend to the Graves"

How should the President of the War on Terror spend his days after January 20, 2009? Chicago Sun-Times columnist Richard Roeper writes:
What should he do with himself?

Alice Collins of Oak Lawn (IL) has an idea.

"Three hundred and sixty-five days a year, in the wind and snow of winter and the heat and humidity of summer, let him tend to the graves of the almost 4,000 men and women who have given their lives in the debacle of Iraq. They honored their oaths, obeyed their commander-in-chief and sacrificed their lives of promise to a lying, unprincipled warmonger.

"He can begin at the grave of my grandson, Lcpl Jonathan W. Collins, killed in action on 8/8/2004."


Marine Lance Cpl. Jonathan Collins of Crystal Lake (IL) was killed by enemy fire in the Al Anbar province of Iraq in the summer of 2004. He was 19.
Thanks to Gold Star Mom Speaks Out (click here for Roeper's Chicago Sun-Times column).

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Seventh Advent Unicorn is Waiting in the Skies

The Star provides you with the optimism that makes you feel on top of the fur-matted blanket in the empty newspaper box underneath the bed.

Combined with Justice, who symbolizes your frame of mind, the Star makes you see everything in the dark, Shimmy, so that you feel in total
harmony with your prey.

Open your eyes wide and keep them open all day. Many parents constantly tell their children not to read in poor light.

"Torture is the intentional and systematic infliction of physical or psychological pain and suffering in order to punish," these parents will say, "and is never acceptable under any circumstances except waterboarding."

Judge Michael Mukasey's influence will mean great passion or possibly some grand project for you, dear Shimmy. Indeed, as Dianne Feinstein says, "First and foremost, Michael Mukasey is not Alberto Gonzales."

The Star, the Empress, and Charles Schumer are smoothing your path at work, Shimmy.

Schumer will tell you, "Mukasey would clean the stench of politicization out of the Justice Department. Judge Mukasey is not my ideal choice. But he is far better than anyone could expect from this administration."

You are dynamic and enthusiastic, Shimmy, but you fail to progress because you don't like other people's toes treading in your Tora Bora litter box. Your lucky star is giving you more knowledge of yourself and of others, enabling you to adopt the right attitude for overcoming all forms of adversity and pressure. You're on the right track!