Thursday, May 5, 2016

Throwback Thursday 2016.05.05

The year was 1993. Back then I was naïve enough to believe that the opinions of us common folk mattered to politicians. So I wrote a letter to then-president Bill Clinton.

I don't recall what the subject was. A quick Google search revealed that there was a lot of discussion regarding his (and hillary's) health care proposal, so maybe that was it. If we knew then the abomination known as obamacare was coming, we might have whole-heartedly accepted the Clinton's plan.

Anyway, I wrote ol' Bill a letter (this was in the days before email and social media were the generally accepted means of communicating).. His response is below.

Click to embiggen.

Typical piece of meaningless political BS. I haven't written a letter (or email) to a politician since.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

News Flash

Repubs nominate unstable hypocritical NY loon.

Dems can't decide between a communist and a felon. 

Time for bourbon, America.

Rules Are Made To Be Broken

All my life I've had an aversion to rules. It made for an interesting childhood, as my parents and I butted heads regularly. One of my first memories is visiting my grandparents when I was around 5 or 6. I was poking around in their basement and found a leather harness attached to a short leash. When I asked my grandmother about it, she told me that as a toddler I would run away and do what I wanted, rather than stay close or come back when called. So they got a harness and leash to keep me under control.

I don't like being told what to do and not do. That's one of the reasons I got out of the Army after three years.

Then I got married...

But that's a long story for another day.

At least I came by my aversion to rules and orders naturally. My father would pick and choose which rules he followed. This caused a few problems, especially since he was a career military man. I recall one occasion where he got into trouble for raffling off his paycheck. He made about twice as much from the raffle as the check was worth. This went on for several months before the brass caught wind of it and put a halt to it.

If you think about it, here in America we're historically conditioned to break the rules. After all, our country was founded by a bunch of people who were fed up with the Crown's rules, and decided to go their own way.

I was raised in Texas, which was likewise founded by a bunch of people who didn't like being told what to do. So I'm a victim of both genealogy and culture. I'm not reckless, however. My rule-breaking is governed by a few ... well ... rules.

Maybe a better way to say it is there are guidelines that can help one become a principled scofflaw.

1. Make sure you know what you're doing. We all like to think we're smarter than the average bear, but sometimes there's a good reason for a rule. Like, for example, "Don't Feed the Bears."

This ended badly for the lady in red.

2. Perform a Cost/Benefits Analysis. It doesn't make sense to break a rule if the potential consequences outweigh any benefits you might gain.

3. Be true to yourself. If a rule forces you to act in a way contrary to your values, ethics, or morals, the hell with it. Do what you believe is right.  (Corollary - if breaking the rule would violate your values, ethics, or morals, then behave yourself.)

Last, beware of blindly following the rules. Doing so can lead to situations like the following.

In closing:
Learn rules carefully so you can break them properly.
 -- Anonymous

If you obey all the rules you'll miss all the fun.
 -- Anonymous

Rules are not necessarily sacred, principles are.
 -- Franklin D Roosevelt quotes

Rules are mostly made to be broken and are too often for the lazy to hide behind.
 -- Douglas MacArthur quotes

Monday, May 2, 2016

A Solution In Search Of A Problem

Here in Texas, the position of Lieutenant Governor (the second-highest executive office in the state, ranking below only the governor) is arguably the most powerful position in state government. The Lt. Gov. controls both the legislative agenda and the budgeting process.

Our current Lt. Gov. is a former radio talk show host named Dan Patrick. Think of a cross between Rush Limbaugh and Ted Cruz, but further to the right, more evangelical, and more abrasive.

I don't mind his stance on issues like border security, taxes, education, and the like. But I don't agree with some of his other ideas. The most recent: his support for a statewide bathroom bill.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, weighing into a national controversy over transgender restrooms, said Tuesday he supports keeping men out of women’s restrooms, even if it takes legislation to do so.

Since the issue erupted into controversy nationally, some Texas lawmakers have said they will support a state law for single-sex restrooms, and the endorsement of that position by Senate-leader Patrick is likely to give that movement momentum.
Don't get me wrong. I have a daughter, and I damn sure don't want some pervert waving his you-know-what around while she's in the restroom. But I don't see how the recent emergence of similar legislation in places like North Carolina, Georgia, and other states is the best way to address this issue. That appears to be a solution in search of a problem.

If you stop and think about it, transgendered and cross-dressing people (I'm not sure what the difference is, but LBGT advocates assure me there is one) have been using public restrooms for years now without any serious incidents that I'm aware of.

If some guy who thinks he's a gal goes into a ladies restroom, he's going to have to do his business in a stall - enclosed within walls and a closed door, his appendage safely out of sight. (I'm not an expert on ladies restrooms, but I doubt they have urinals. Ladies, please correct me if I'm wrong.)

Ditto for a gal who thinks she's a guy. She won't be able to use a urinal, so she'll have to use a stall, where no guy will be traumatized by catching a glimpse of her va-jay-jay.

In either case, other occupants of the restroom won't know and shouldn't care what kind of plumbing the person in the stall is using.

One possible solution that should be acceptable to most folks is to pass or strengthen public indecency laws that prohibit the exhibition of a person's genitalia, regardless of whether it's an innie or an outie. That should allay the concern of those who fear an outbreak of males whipping it out in a ladies restroom, which seems to be what's driving all these new restroom laws.

IMO all these bathroom bills are a waste of time and resources. They are further dividing an already fragmented populace over a non-problem. To be clear, I don't care where you fall on the 100% male <-> 100% female spectrum. Just behave yourself and keep your whatchamacallit covered up, and everything will be peachy.

Oh, and make sure you wash your hands after you go...

Of course, you could say the same thing about republicans. They're wasting time and energy worrying about who pees where, when there are much greater problems that need solving.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Sunday Funnies 2016.05.01

Random stuff...

I am truly perplexed that so many of my friends are against another mosque being built in our town. I think it should be the goal of every American to be tolerant regardless of their religious beliefs. Thus the mosque should be allowed, in an effort to promote tolerance.

That is why I also propose that two nightclubs be opened next door to the mosque; thereby promoting tolerance from within the mosque. We could call one of the clubs, which would be gay, "The Turban Cowboy," and the other, a topless bar, would be called "You Mecca Me Hot."

Next door should be a butcher shop that specializes in pork, and adjacent to that an open-pit barbecue pork restaurant, called “Iraq of Ribs.

Across the street there could be a lingerie store called "Victoria Keeps Nothing Secret," with sexy mannequins in the window modelling the goods, and on the other side a liquor store called Morehammered.

All of this would encourage Muslims to demonstrate the tolerance they demand of us.

Yes we should promote tolerance, and you can do your part by passing this on. And if you are not laughing or smiling at this point... It is either past your bedtime, or its midnight at the oasis and time to put your camel to bed.

Yesterday Ted Cruz, the man mathematically eliminated from becoming president, picked his vice president. Cruz chose Carly Fiorina as his running mate: The first woman ever to lose the Republican nomination twice in three months.

  - James Corden

During Donald Trump's foreign policy speech yesterday, he said when it comes to military action, we have to be unpredictable. Scary news for Iran, but terrifying news for Canada.

  - Seth Meyers

Congress passed a bill to declare the American bison national mammal of the United States. So finally Republicans and Democrats have managed to reach across the aisle to pass a meaningless piece of legislation.

  - Jimmy Kimmel

Never trust a man when he’s in love, drunk, or running for office.

  - Shirley Maclaine

If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month.

  - Theodore Roosevelt

Saturday, April 30, 2016

In The News

I was browsing yesterday's news when I came across these two headlines.

GOP County Official: Hillary is Going to ‘Go Down Like Monica Lewinsky’ in Debate Against Trump
Bob Sutton, chairman of the Broward County Republican Executive Committee in Florida, told (the Washington Post) that Clinton would be easy to defeat, adding:
“I think when Donald Trump debates Hillary Clinton she’s going to go down like Monica Lewinsky.”
That'll certainly help with getting the female vote.

The next headline is not a laughing matter, but it was difficult to stifle a snort when I read it.
Dead Couple Found Killed
Those two got me to thinking about other unintentionally funny headlines. A little Google-Fu and Voilà!

Of course, if you really want a laugh, read what passes for journalism these days...

Friday, April 29, 2016

Rising Stock

I have some serious reservations about each and every one of the four remaining candidates for president (five, if you count John Kasich, which I don't). But when I saw this story Ted Cruz's price per share immediately skyrocketed in my personal presidential stock market.

Boehner: Ted Cruz a 'miserable son of a bitch'
Former Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) panned Ted Cruz as “Lucifer in the flesh” during comments at an event Wednesday night at Stanford University.

“I have Democrat friends and Republican friends. I get along with almost everyone,” Boehner said, according to The Stanford Daily.

“But I have never worked with a more miserable son of a bitch in my life.”
Oscar Wilde once said "You can always judge a man by the quality of his enemies." If that's true, then the fact that John Boehner (and by extension, the corps of D.C. insiders) considers Ted Cruz an enemy speaks volumes about both.

Remember way back when... when there were 15 or 16 republican presidential candidates? Cruz was a Washington outsider then. Hell, even after getting elected to the senate he remained an outsider from Day One.
Cruz ... met with House members of the conservative Freedom Caucus — an unusual move for a freshman senator — in 2013 and pushed them to fight to defund ObamaCare. The effort eventually led to a government shutdown...

Boehner reportedly called Cruz a “jackass” over the issue.
Boehner and his cronies are the jackasses. Even today, he and the rest of the GOP establishment don't get it. They fail to understand that their failure to stand up and do the job they were elected to do - dismantle obamacare, secure our borders, seek out and destroy terrorists, balance the budget, restore America's international power and prestige, and generally preserve American values and traditions - has resulted in The Rise of Trump.

What I don't get is how over the past few months Cruz has come to be portrayed as a member of the establishment, while others get a pass.
(Boehner) recounted how he used to play golf with Donald Trump, the current GOP presidential front-runner, and said they were “texting buddies.”

Boehner told the crowd he’d support Trump in the general election, but not Cruz.
So who's the real outsider here? And who's the miserable son of a bitch?

It ain't Ted...

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Wordless Wednesday One Day Late

I would have posted this yesterday, but I was too busy trying to figure out which restroom to use...

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

They're All The Same

By now I'm sure you're aware of the outrageous action taken by that lunatic masquerading as the governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe. He has restored the right to vote to over 200,000 convicted felons in that state.

Needless to say, he's a democrat.

His rationale?

Gov. McAuliffe wants murderers to feel good about themselves again
In his order, McAuliffe explained the decision in standard liberalese: the ban on felon voting “disproportionately affects racial minorities and the economically disadvantaged;” ex-cons “deserve to re-enter society on fair and just terms...”

The felons whom McAuliffe has allowed to vote include murderers, rapists (including those who have committed child rape), armed robbers, and kidnappers...

Adding more layers of absurdity, and laying it on thick, McAuliffe said that ex-cons are “embarrassed to tell their children” they lost the right to vote because of their crimes. Thanks to McAuliffe, they can avoid embarrassment by telling them they committed rape or murder but are free to vote.

McAuliffe also compared his political maneuver, a crass attempt to enlarge the number of Democratic voters, to the work of Abraham Lincoln. “Ten yards from where I spoke [about allowing criminals to vote] is where Abraham Lincoln addressed the freed slaves 151 years ago this month.”
Is he really equating his action - allowing convicted rapists and murderers to vote - to freeing innocent people from being enslaved? Other than both groups consisting of mostly black people (not being racist, but merely stating facts - McAuliffe himself acknowledges that the ban on felon voting “disproportionately affects racial minorities") I don't see any similarity. Why aren't the professional 'racism is everywhere' whiners all over this?

It's also worth noting that McAuliffe did not restore the right to keep and bear arms to those felons. I could make a pretty good argument that it is less harmful to society to shoot the wrong person than to elect the wrong person. But that's beside the point.

Anyway, there is no doubt that this is a blatantly political move.

... (Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe's) order will allow more than 200,000 ex-cons in Virginia to register to vote in the upcoming presidential election.
Everyone understands that the Democratic candidate, presumably Hillary Clinton (for whom McAuliffe has carried much water), will gobble up the overwhelming majority of these vote.
No doubt. So why do I bring this up now, days after McAuliffe's announcement?

Because this just came to light.

Donald Trump Donated to the Democrat Governor Who Just Gave Felons the Right to Vote
The governor who just upended the Virginia constitution to allow over 200,000 felons vote for Hillary — well turns out that Donald Trump donated to him as well:

     ... among the many liberal Democrats Trump supported throughout his career was Terry McAuliffe in his first bid for the Virginia’s governor’s mansion in 2009. We are not talking ancient history here. The frontrunner for the GOP nomination gave $25,000 to one of the sleaziest Democrats of our generation just seven years ago, a man who served as the Chairman of the DNC.

      As late as September 2014, Trump was still rubbing shoulders with the man:

This has just confirmed what I have slowly come to suspect. Donald Trump is not a political outsider. Sure, he may not be a member of the republican establishment. But he's mingled and traded favors with politicians of both sides in an ongoing effort to feather his own nest. He's no different from the rest of the lying two-faced hypocritical weasels that run both political parties, and the special interest groups they consort with.

A pox on them all - including Trump.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Good News, Ladies

I am not being judgemental. I am merely passing on information.

I report, you decide...

Women with larger behinds are healthier and more intelligent, study finds
It turns out that having a little "junk in the trunk" is a good thing, health wise. Not only does having a larger derriere boost overall health, but it's tied to increased intelligence and lower risk of chronic disease, according to researchers at the University of Oxford and Churchill Hospital in the United Kingdom.

"There's a lot of evidence that shows that the fat depots are not the same in the body," said Dr. Robert Kushner, a professor of medicine specializing in obesity at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago.

Belly fat "is more metabolically active," explains Kushner, meaning it has a greater effect on the brain and overall body, compared to fat stored in the lower half, which tends to be more stable and invokes fewer cytokines or proteins associated with insulin resistance and the onset of diabetes.

"Having a big butt also favors leptin levels in the female body, which is a hormone (that regulates) weight (and) anti-inflammatory, vascular-protective and anti-diabetic attributes. The adipose tissue of the buttocks traps harmful fatty particles and prevents cardiovascular disease."

Maintaining a larger behind requires significant amounts of Omega 3 fats, which are proven to boost brain function, memory and cognitive abilities. Research also shows that children born to women with wide hips are more intelligent compared to those conceived by thinner and less curvy mothers.
This should make a number of women I know very happy - bigger butts mean healthier bodies and bigger brains.

Plus they're easier to hold on to...