Taking the Training Wheels Off Mood:
If any of you have an opinion about bloghosts and software, please leave it in the comments section here. My third blogiversary is coming up later this month and I want to celebrate by getting an adult's blog.
I have no idea what Lycos-Tripod thinks they're doing, but they put out some shit product.
Volumes As Blurbs Now Playing: "Safety Dance" by Men without Hats
Uh, okay. The walking-out-of-school-to-protest thang was endearing and heartening the first couple of days, but y'all are starting to make me doubt your principles.
The grown-ups with the strange red flags and the Che Guevara T-shirts are pleased to see that you can be moved when the moment strikes, but let's not be wankers, okay? When maybe one in ten of you can even put two coherent words together about what the Congress is trying to do deal with illegal immigration, it's probably time to go online for the straight dope. Do they have that at MySpace.com? I mean, besides the rally notices.
Oh, and quit wagging and waving Mexican flags every damned place. If you want to be in America, try a couple of Stars-and-Stripes in y'alls ensemble. It tends to suppress the hypertension triggers in the dumb white bastards who are going to need to hire you this summer.
Assuming you want the kind of work that Americans are doing for themselves.
Total Sack of It Now Playing: "Only Love Can Break a Heart" by Gene Pitney
Cynthia McKinney, the Jew-hating racist who represents Georgia's fourth Congressional district, was [talking with] Soledad O'Brien on CNN this morning and brought up the issue of her supporters; viz., Danny Glover and Harry Belafonte. Apparently, these celebrities represent some sort of authority on race in America. Who knew? From where I stand, they are race-baiters. Nothing more. And to support McKinney, who is unquestionably a racist, reflects extremely poorly on them.
It's time for people to take personal responsibility for their actions and quit blaming everybody but themselves. I am embarrassed that this woman is in a position to represent the Atlanta area in the US House of Representatives. I hope she is prosecuted, tried, convicted, and kicked out of the Congress for her physical abuse of the security personnel in our nation's Capitol.
Cynthia McKinney is an absolute disgrace. Shame on her and anybody who stands with her.
Community Property Now Playing:as i would not be a slave, so i would not be a master.
I don't understand why it's not offensive and demeaning for the President of the United States and people who think like him to say that he welcomes the huge influx of cheap Mexican labor because the Mexicans are only here to do "the jobs that Americans won't do for themselves." What the hell is that supposed to mean and why is it being tolerated? Is that the price of admission for Mexican migrants? To know their place and to keep to it?
Uh, listen, pal. I don't know what you're driving at, but I don't like it. You want to colonize Mexican labor in your own yards and kitchens and factories ---and then pretend that there aren't consequences in that? These people do not vanish into thin air after your drop them back off at the Home Depot or when they pile into the trailer with the mowers and weedeaters and ramble off. These people are making their lives here. They inhabit communities inside of communities. If these are unassimilable enclaves now, don't doubt for a moment that you had something to do with that.
Americans should speak English. That's all I know to say on this issue of illegal and legal Mexican immigration. You want to come and stake your claim? Okay. You're going to do that, anyway. But make sure the kids are literate in English. Bilingualism is fine, too, but everyone needs to be able to communicate and that should be the price of admission. Before all else.
When in Rome, amigos. You know? Because the surest way to dissolution (by way of second-class citizenship) is to be ignorant of the dominant tongue.
And Bound for Old Virginny
I'm perfectly okay with Tom DeLay's decision to resign from the US House of Representatives. In fact, as I told my friend in New York tonight, I consider DeLay's troubles to be his karmic comeuppance for his actions during the Schiavo Embarrassment.
DeLay's most valuable contribution to my state, as I see it, was his successful effort to get Texas properly redistricted. You may be appalled at that, but that's only because you preferred the kind of Democratic gerrymandering that had gone on here before.
Oh, and I happened to catch KXAN's Rich Parsons asking some local and state Republicans on the news this evening about their thoughts on what DeLay's legacy would be. Predictably, the weasel was out in front. Oh, well. It was a loaded question, anyway.
Distracted Now Playing:go floriduh!
I'm sick of this stupid State Farm Insurance commercial with the mentally ill sports fan bellowing out a bunch of horseshit at the gracious and attractive agent. I'm not thinking about the substance of the ad, see; I'm thinking about all the different ways I'd like to strike this idiot with a bat. As hard and as often as I possibly can.
It doesn't seem reasonable to say that white people, for instance, aren't allowed to make fun of a black person's hair. Is there something inherently funnier about a black person's hair that sticks up than a white person's hair that does? Or, worse, is there something more sacrosanct about it?
Oh, horseshit. Get over it.
If I were to appear at my place of employment with my hair completely unmoved from how it first appears when I am awakened, it would amaze and perhaps even stupefy. It is the kind of bedhead that begets legends. It is cowlicked and dream-curled; smooshed and roostered; plastered and indomitable.
So when I come across someone as vile and hateful and embarrassing as the Jew-hating US Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, I am proscribed as a white guy from laughing at her hair when she meant it to look that way?
Let's See a Little Leg, Fatima Now Playing: "Don't Talk (Put Your Head on My Shoulder)" by the Beach Boys
I don't know anything about Jill Carroll. I don't know if she's a good person or not. I think she probably is because I tend to believe that the most redeeming organ (if not redemptive, properly) of my first (and last) church would be moral and credible about whom it hires.
And the truth of my judgement is this: I wish I did not have to see how her politics will come to figure in this ordeal she has been through. I wish that what she is were frozen tonight when there's no reason that I would yet know in the nature of her beliefs to think any less of her.
I've heard of more than a few former prisoners of war who claimed that the confession was the hardest part of their captivity. Knowing that the only people in the world whose opinion of you really matters may someday see film of you denouncing them and all they stand for. That would be awfully hard.
I am extremely annoyed to read that Katie Couric is about to replace Bob Schieffer as the anchor of the CBS Evening News. Why is this happening? Schieffer, despite his occasional fits of quasi-Leftist drivel, is a respected icon at CBS News with more credibility in his left ventricle than Couric could hire had.
The only redeeming feature of Couric's newsreporting persona is her fantastic gams ---which, I guess, are now going straight behind a desk where they cannot be fully appreciated.
The answer, then, is that Couric is going to try to reconceive the anchor's role ---with lots of the stupid proppery that she so heavily leans on now as an early-morning perk-dispensery: dish, sit-downs, and fluffery.
I dread the nauseating consequences of this move. I actually tune into see Schieffer now simply because I do respect him. But Couric? No way, dude. This is a disastrous idea.
I worship her face, but that's not enough to excuse Elizabeth Vargas' introduction to this evening's World News Tonight program in which she said that a jury has determined that terrorist collaborator Zacharias Moussaoui "can be killed" for his role in the atrocities of 11 September 2001.
The state executes its capital offenders, madame, because it is our collective will that such persons be removed permanently from the potential to do us harm.
Killing ---or murdering--- innocent people is what we intend to prevent when we execute Moussaoui at some point in what I hope is the near future. Let us keep that clearly in mind.
Papers in Order Now Playing: "You Ain't Going Nowhere" by the Byrds
There is neither the will nor any way for this country to sufficiently rid itself of the millions of illegal immigrants who are already here. That's because we don't "rid" ourselves of our neighbors or our low-wage employees. That's the kind of thing that goes on in Rwanda and other godforsaken shitholes, but not here in America. America just keeps on absorbing whatever comes her way because she doesn't know of any decent alternatives.
Now, this doesn't mean that I like pressing one for English or seeing my community's schools degraded by ignorant nonsense or facing a future of uneducated and unassimilated workers. In fact, I hate the very idea. But what am I going to do? Demand that hard-working people abandon their hopes and opportunities and go back to Old Mexico? Nope. Charge low-wage laborers as felons and deport them? Good Christ! I'd just as soon criminalize and deport certain 10th-generation American assholes I know than to do that.
Looks like there's no solution to this problem. I suspect that, in another generation, the American flag will have some green in it and my kids will be throwing slang with los hermanos.
I dunno. What do you want me to do about it?
What I said to do about it when I was a much younger man?
Eating It Now Playing:twenty-five dollars worth of it,goddamn!
I made a mistake today. I did a thing I do every month ---and have for many months now--- and it has, for the first time, caused a serious problem for me. I have no idea how I have heretofore avoided incurring the penalty for doing this thing, but, by God, it's hit me today.
The law allows for mitigating circumstances, so let the circumstances start to mitigate.
Buncha sons of bitches.
This is the kinda shit that turns normal people into goddamned Democrats! The kind that just stay mad all the time because they know that even the sons of bitches who go by that same name in the halls of Congress couldn't care less about them as poor, tax-paying, bill-paying consumers at the mercy of Big Business.
Because let us be clear: This Government helps asshole institutions stick it to you in new ways that would make Messalina blush.
You have to know things before you do other things. Even if you always thought you could do things the original way.
And now for the key to the story (because I am sloppy-mad): there is no such thing as a personal check what goes into the bag of the mailman from Blondie and gets carried along in a truck and delivered to bespectacled old spinster clerks sitting with pneumatic tubes hissing behind them all day and IBM punchcards at the ready to credit your account.
Over at CNN, Lou Dobbs has lately been making it a point to recite the following quote from Theodore Roosevelt (emphasis mine):
"In the first place we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, birthplace or origin. But this is predicated upon the man's becoming in very fact an American, and nothing but an American. There can be no divided allegiance here.
"Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all.
"We have room for but one flag, the American flag, and this excludes the red flag, which symbolizes all wars against liberty and civilization, just as much as it excludes any foreign flag of a nation to which we are hostile. We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language. And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people."
Dobbs says this quote dates from 1907, but it may actually have been taken from TR's final message ---a letter to the President of the American Defense Society, dated 3 January 1919 and read at a meeting in New York two days later.
I don't know the truth of the quote's provenance or whether it is only a medley of remarks that TR had been making all along. The fact is that Roosevelt was a genius who understood History perhaps better than any of our Presidents. What he was saying in 1907 or 1919 or whenever it was is amazingly relevant to our current condition.
Theodore Roosevelt's view of the Latin American peoples was no more sanguine than Woodrow Wilson's. But I think he would have recognized a fait accompli when he saw it. That's what we have in America today.
Really all that's left to do is to hope for a more affirmative advancement of the English language ---which is now the world's language--- and the eventual relegation of the old cultural habits that cannot be reconciled to the needs of our democratized and educated citizenry.
Self-Repudiator Now Playing:do you have prince albert in the can?
I read a really excellent essay this afternoon in the American Prospect about Al Gore and what I would call the most Nixonesque self-rehabilitation of a failed politician since, uh, Richard Nixon.
My favorite part, though, is author Ezra Klein's explanation for why Gore stuck a knife in Joe Lieberman's back in 2003 when he threw his support behind Howard Dean for the party's nomination:
But it has been a strange trajectory, like watching a corporate yes-man regress back into an idealistic teenager -- Al Gore goes Bulworth. And never was it so stunning as when he endorsed Howard Dean’s candidacy in December 2003, throwing his institutional weight behind the Democratic field’s anti-establishment, pugilistic, liberal champion. In doing so, he snubbed Joe Lieberman, his running mate from four years earlier. But what all the commentators who fretted about Gore’s etiquette missed was that the Dean endorsement wasn’t a repudiation of Lieberman, but a repudiation of Gore.
Farce Now Playing:press one for english...
I'm watching these Senators talking about their new immigration bill and it's just a farce. What are you gonna do?
No one in the leadership of the United States Government ---neither Republican nor Democrat--- has any intention of doing anything meaningful about the illegal immigration issues facing our country. Absolutely none. At most, this will be a jobs bill for the border patrol bureaucracy and a potential bit of superficial bipartisanship.
It's a joke.
Ain't nobody rounding up nobody in Aztlan, baby. The transmogrification of the American People is an hourly event, amigos. It is an irreversible prospect.
(By the way, why didn't anyone believe me a dozen years ago when I said we must make English the official language of this country? Are we not Romans? Are we not all children of the lingua latina?)
More Honored in the Breach
Look. Even if your conception of "the news" is that it's a means of reporting to its consumers only the aberrant event, doesn't that mean you have some obligation to educate people as to what is the norm?
In Iraq, Big Media too often takes the easy way out. It simply runs with the most violent and chaotic images ---rarely turning to the other, more numerous events in that troubled country that would acquaint America with the stories of our successes among the Iraqi people.
This is what balance on the airwaves and newspapers means: reporting the political and cultural events in Iraq and analyzing them for the benefit of our own country. What is going on with a free press in Iraq? How about all of the new satellite dishes sprouting up? What are the Iraqis watching? What are they importing? What sorts of groups are they joining? What use are they making of the Internet?
There's a lot of stuff going on in Iraq's civil society ---and Big Media isn't doing enough to make the Iraqi people's struggle for peace and liberty relevant to us. Even if it takes the crassest sort of exploitative and ridiculous showmanship that America can muster, make it happen. Bring the Iraqi people ---not just the murderers and wacked-out Islamofascists--- into our homes and make their successes our own. This should be the big networks' bailiwick, but they have done jack.
I read somewhere today that Don Rumsfeld says that our Government does a lousy job of communicating the superiority of our ideas to the world. A "D or D-minus." It's an amazing thing for him to say, but I agree absolutely. I want the kind of propaganda that made America famous. I want for us to stand up in our own little ways and say to the world that our system is one that tends towards peace and freedom and opportunity. Those are inherently desirable states of being for any citizen in the world. In large measure, we realize those high standards ---and it is necessary that we remind our neighbors it is so.
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 8:07 PM CST
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Updated: Monday, 3 April 2006 8:37 PM CDT