Archive for July 10th, 2011

By JC

“Politics is for people who have a passion for changing life but lack a passion for living it.” — Bonanza Jellybean in Even Cowgirls Get the Blues

Before I get all philosophic about the current state of what passes for political discussion by the dem party hacks over at the Capitol’s negative campaigning testbed, I thought I’d share a nugget out of my past that seems oh, so apropos right ’bout now.

As our heroine Sissy and her guru Chink contemplate the world about them, sitting on an overlook above the Rubber Rose Ranch (whose early clientele bear a remarkable likeness to the snipes over at said “blog”, and indeed it might be where they have settled after exiting from the Rubber Rose), they have a nice revelation about politics.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Excerpt from Even Cowgirls Get the Blues by Tom Robbins

“…Religion and politics are unnecessary to the culture or the individual that has poetry.”

“You really don’t believe in political solutions, do you?”

“I believe in political solutions to political problems.

But man’s primary problems aren’t political; they’re philosophical. Until humans can solve their philosophical problems, they’re condemned to solve their political problems over and over and over again. It’s a cruel, repetitious bore.”

Sissy thought she had the old goat this time, and not just by the pecker, either.

“Well, then, what are the philosophical solutions?”

“Ha ha ho ho and bee bee. That’s for you to find out.” She didn’t have him.

“I’ll say this much and no more: there’s got to be poetry. And magic. Your thumbs taught you that much, didn’t they? Poetry and magic. At every level. If civilization is ever going to be anything but a grandiose pratfall, anything more than a can of deodorizer in the shithouse of existence, then statesmen are going to have to concern themselves with magic and poetry.

Bankers are going to have to concern themselves with magic and poetry. Time magazine is going to have to write about magic and poetry. Factory workers and housewives are going to have to get their lives entangled in magic and poetry. As for policemen and cowgirls …”

The Chink wagged his beard at the ranch below. It was a beard that a nesting crane might enjoy.

If Sissy failed to comprehend completely, at least she no longer felt confused. Through a pinhole in the peace that dropped like the dusk around them, she squeezed one last question.

“Do you think such a thing can ever happen?”

“If you understood poetry and magic, you’d know that it doesn’t matter.”

The moon rose.
~~~

For those of you you who would rather read the “Reader’s Digest” version, or are too young to remember anything but maybe Uma Thurman movie trailers, go read the review by Dan Geddes at The Satirist.

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Duganz, consider this a payback summer reading recommendation for having made me devote a week to reading Keith Richards’ Life and its concurrent listening sessions with 30+ old Stones recordings, and countless other musical miscellany.

Oh, and there is a wonderful recipe for douches in Cowgirl that might help the stench emanating from the Capitol’s henchwomen and henchmen these days. Jes sayin’…

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 No, Donny, these men are nihilists, there’s nothing to be afraid of.

Nihilists! Fuck me. I mean, say what you like about the tenets of National Socialism, Dude, at least it’s an ethos.

-Walter, The Big Labowski

By CFS

President Obama needs to freshen-up his negotiation strategy.  Engaging the Republicans in their fixation over the debt ceiling is giving them exactly what they want… a whole summer in D.C. wasted on what should have been a non-issue, lots of press coverage for Republicans “standing-up” to Obama, and a chance to get their message across over and over again.

I would suggest that Obama spend a weekend studying The Big Lebowski, the Cohen brothers’ finest movie.  Its chalk full of intrigue, negotiation tactics, and great quotes.

Obama, it would seem, still hasn’t learned the lesson from the first two years of his presidency… there is no negotiating with Republicans pushed to the right by the rise of the Tea People.  And while the Republicans have an easily understood set of tenets to stand upon (less government, less taxes), Obama attempts to take the middle ground.  But in taking the stance of the pragmatic leader he forgoes the adoption of an easily understood set of principles and a message that can be repeated again and again within the confines of our modern, attention-deficit-disorder media cycle.  Instead we get a series of policy speeches more filled with platitudes than memorable outspoken stances on important issues.

By placing the legacy of Roosevelt up for negotiation he shows the Republicans just how little he is willing to stand and fight for.  Social Security is not a fair trade-off for raising the debt ceiling.  While Obama is trying to give away New Deal reforms that have lasted 80 years, Boehner just stands there and smiles while he pees on Obama’s rug.

So… what are some lessons Obama can take away from this silver screen classic?

  1. Obama is playing the wrong game.  The nihilists attempted to negotiate and bluff their way to millions, but in the end came away empty handed and missing a toe and an ear between them.  Stop negotiating and play the same game the Republicans are, CHICKEN.
  2. You didn’t think I was rolling out of here naked! -Walter.  Carry an uzi into the situation.  If the Republicans are going to threaten a shut-down of the government and a default on our debt, what are you going to threaten them with Mr. President?
  3.  Walter, face it, there isn’t any connection. – The Dude.  There is no connection between the debt ceiling and Social Security, so don’t make one up.  Social Security is not the reason we are in the current fiscal mess, tax cuts, Medicare part D, and a decade of failed wars and foreign policy are to blame.
  4. OVER THE LINE!  I’m sorry, Smokey. You were over the line, that’s a foul. -Walter.  When the Republicans cross over the line, call them on there shit man, don’t let it slide.
  5. And finally… Obama needs to act a little less like the nihilists, and a lot more like Jesus.

by jhwygirl

Caught this one via Pogie at Intelligent Discontent, with his weekly blog roundup – Polymontana, one of conservative Montana’s blogs has a post up from calling Betty Ford a “RINO feminist”. This is one day after her death, mind you.

Staying class, I see.

I’m just a tad too young to remember Betty’s impact specifically, but what I do know is that woman was brave and refreshingly honest and real and without judgement in a position that isn’t really conducive to being brave and honest and real and without judgement.

It dawned on me as I watched the evening news that, given my propensity to throw the word “hypocrite” around a lot, that Betty Ford was as far from being associated with hypocrisy as someone in the political world can get.

It seems to me that First Lady Betty Fork knew that people were real and with imperfections. She supported a woman’s right to choose, and from what I saw on some newsclips, she marched in Equal Rights Amendment marches.

Thank you Betty Ford!

Godspeed to that strong outspoken classy former First Lady. May there be a parade in her honor when she hits those pearly gates.

by jhwygirl

I’m OK with cutting back on social security – let’s start with eliminating benefits for Warren Buffett and George Soros. They don’t need ’em.

Both of them, incidentally, have indicated they’re OK with that.

Another thing I’d do is eliminate the cap on social security deductions. Currently, after $106,800, social security payroll deductions stop. Why? What’s the logic to that – especially if we’re handing out “social security” to people who have plenty of that on their own – due most likely to the U.S.’s generous tax policies regarding investment income.

So let’s Cut the Cap with regards to social security.

Let’s cut the cap on deductions…and let’s cap benefits for those that are safe and secure in their own, and leave that social security check for those that need it.

Those that take that check and put it right back into the economy. It’s not like granny down the street is banking that into Wall Street investment firms.

Senator Jon Tester? Senator Max Baucus? Rep. Denny Rehberg? Are you listening?

While we’re at it – like George and Warren, I’m OK with taking away their Medicare benefits too.

Can’t call this stuff insurance when the people who are using it don’t need it. It’s at that point it becomes an entitlement, and that’s where I’m OK with cutting these social programs.




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