Saturday, October 24, 2015

Corn Pwned

There are many tedious rituals in 'murka's interminable campaign process, but one of the worst is this weird insistence that some inbred shithead small state possesses some sort of intrinsic wisdom that us city slickers (I say this from a town in California that has fewer than 8,000 inhabitants, in a county with fewer than 30,000 people, and not even a movie theater) jest cain't reckon.

People who classify themselves as "traditionalists" tend to hew to the idea that just because something has been done in a certain way for a certain amount of time, it should continue to be that way. Slavery was one such tradition; subjugating women was another. I wouldn't say that having states like Iowa and New Hampshire have first call at anointing national politicians is as ethically abhorrent as those things, but it is certainly at least as counter-productive.

This is a no-win situation for those states, quite frankly. There are only two lines of defense -- Iowa's miserable track record at picking eventual nominees either makes the process a harmless, anodyne event, or it renders its considered collective opinion completely useless. So why not just set up a rotating schedule throughout all states, large and small?

While most of us may not have traveled around the world, visiting every country and culture, I would guess that most of us have traveled at least some. I wouldn't say I'm well-traveled by any means, but I've been through half of the U.S., half of Europe, and parts of Canada and Mexico -- enough to know, like most people who have traveled far more also know, that once you get past the cultural bullshit, people are basically people. They mostly want the same things:  a decent living for themselves, a future for their families, a community that provides opportunities for prosperity, freedom to live their lives more or less how they please.

There is nothing special about a small rural state, nor a large urban city. Again, the individuals in both of those locales want essentially the same things out of life, even if they self-actualize those desires differently. The only real, measurable socioeconomic differences mostly have to do with the levels of education, which in turn center around people with degrees leaving for the cities, where the money is.

Many people in rural communities are simply stuck there in lives of inertia and clutter, but there are also some very intelligent people in those areas. Unfortunately, most of those smart folks are retirees who moved out to the sticks to save a buck and get away from the crime and assholes. So they can help and skew the IQ curve, but not much and not for long.

The point is that, despite our cultural reverse pretensions, there is nothing particularly special about these areas at all. It is merely a fiction perpetrated by the corporate media, as part of their endless PR arm to simultaneously guilt-trip white urban liberals, and falsely empower aggrieved rural conservatives, who apparently are unable to count, or they would have noticed by now that no one with any real brains or ambition wants to live in Cooter's fucking Gulch anymore.

It doesn't matter that Iowa Republitards are jacking off to Ben Carson this week, when they were spanking it to Trump a month ago, and Michelle Bachmann a few years ago. They should know by now, just by the empirically verifiable and consistent results, that no one gives a red-hot monkey-fuck what they think. But for some reason we persist with this odd fiction that Iowans "should" continue to have first opportunity to kick the tires on potential leaders.

Just as Every Cop Is a Criminal, and All the Sinners Saints

Look, I think most people across the ideological spectrum will attest that the majority of police officers are decent people doing difficult work the best they can under adverse conditions. This is not really in dispute. The problem is that when there is a turd, they refuse to fucking flush it. You can't make them, la la la they can't hear you, they will insist that not only is there no turd, but not even a bad odor.

It has less to do with whether the individual that gets shot is black -- though that clearly is a statistically significant factor -- and more to do with the victim in question being of the "marginalized" class. This is what those aerosol-cheese-sucking yahoos counter-protesting in Ferguson and elsewhere don't seem to get:  this is a socioeconomic issue, even more than a racial one. If you're a dipshit drug dealer and they decide to cave in your front door without warning, you're fair game. In a southern state, the odds double. And in Florida or Texas, they triple. And they get away with it, every goddamned time.

Hair Today, Goon Tomorrow

It's amazing yet immensely fun to realize that John Ellis Bush, of all people, has become the ideal target for Donald Trump's weekly campaign cockpunching. The added entertainment, given that Trump has been almost Palin-esque in his sheer contempt for anything resembling facts or objectivity, is that the glowing bull's-eye on Yeb's fivehead has made Trump more accurate in his attacks. He's forced Jeb to defend and obfuscate his brother's failures, and now Trump is calling Bush out for having to confer with his nonagenarian parents and dipshit brother over What To Do Now.
"Bush now has gotta cut back," Trump said at a campaign rally in Jacksonville, Florida. "Here's a guy who wants to run our country. And he can't even run his own campaign. And you know what? He's cutting back big."

The billionaire diagnosed Bush's campaign as "failing" and supplied with "no money." His White House bid, Trump said to wild applause, was "losing badly and embarrassing his family."


In Florida, Trump lambasted Bush's pivot towards family support, mocking Bush for "meeting today with mommy and daddy."

"They're working on the campaign," Trump jeered. "They're working!"
Even a stuffed asshole is right once in a while. Things will even out at some point, because Trump is a terminal douchebag with an impossibly high sense of self-regard, and he's a bully by nature. It is axiomatic that sooner or later he will step on his dick by talking shit about Oprah or beating up a penguin.

But in the meantime, it is fun watching him suck the lifeforce out of what remains of the vaunted Bush dynasty, political barnacles who have affixed themselves to the hull of this nation for several generations now. No doubt Poppy and Barb sincerely believe that after their Hispanic son, Neil and Marvin deserve a turn, or maybe one or more of Jeb's fuck-up children. That's the thing about this family of layabouts and parasites -- like rats and cockroaches, there's always one more of them.

We'll know pretty soon, like by January 1st, whether the Bushes still have any real juice or not, if Poppy or Dubya can actually lean on anyone with money these days. I think it's an even split -- they'll find a last few loyalists, maybe even enough to get them over the hump. Bush has the built-in advantage that, if he can just hang on for dear life long enough for that inevitable Trump implosion, he'll be a shoo-in.

What's hilarious is this belief that such an ascendancy is a logical event, rather than a symptom of the GOP's ongoing malaise (which is like referring to end-stage HIV as a nasty cold). The Bushes think that their next family scion belongs there, similar to how the Clintons believe that Hillary belongs there, but in a deeper and more pernicious way. One major difference is that there is no one in the Clinton family beyond Hillary waiting in the wings; maybe Chelsea wants in at some point, but there is at least as much chance that she grew up seeing how the sausage gets made and wants nothing to do with any of it. Even if she did, there's no one beyond her.

Anyway, back to the Donald-slamming-Jeb meme, what actually makes it mean something is how adeptly Trump illustrates the raw truth that there is no real reason for Jon Ellis Bush to be President of the United States. That there is also no earthly reason for Trump to be preznit is beside the point. We must take our nuggets of illumination wherever and however they happen to be unearthed. Sometimes it's from a billionaire turd miner.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Cruel and Usual

Now that the summer silly season is winding down, and "serious" (at least in comparison) observers and observations are getting more involved in what passes for a political discussion in this country, Donald Trump's oldest children are flooding the zone to defend dear old dad's spewage and tone.

Let's play devil's advocate for a few:  I don't doubt their sincerity. I believe that if he likes you, needs something from you, or you at least pull your weight, Donald Trump is probably a reasonably generous person, nice even. There, I said it.

He's an obnoxious tool partly by temperament, partly because, like Jesus and Gandhi and L. Ron Hubbard, Trump intuitively understands that he has to fully commit to his own hype. It's kind of like being in an up-and-coming band -- if you don't believe you're awesome and destined for success, why on earth should anyone else?

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Guns 'n' Poses

While most of the media oxygen regarding gun violence tends to get sucked out on whatever mass-shooting horror of the week is getting visited upon [pick one:  students/shoppers/family members/neighbors/friends/random bystanders] this time, we shouldn't ignore the incidents of toxic stupidity with firearms that may not even kill anyone, but should at least make folks think about some of the maroons that are allowed to pack heat.

The latest and greatest is this dumb cow in Michigan who shot up a Home Depot parking lot trying to "help" HD security chase down a shoplifter. For some reason the dumb cow has not yet been identified in any of the media reports I've seen, so we'll just keep referring to her as "dumb cow" or "DC." Now, it seems that DC may not even be charged with any crime or infraction. This seems preposterous, yet completely predictable in our gun-culture climate.

Fortunately for DC, she did not hurt anyone. Lucky break for her; I doubt if I'm alone in saying that had my family or I been hit by her stray stupidity while walking across the parking lot, I'd have sued every loose dime out of her. And if she didn't have a pot to piss in or a window to throw it out of, I'd make sure she at least couldn't afford a gun.

Sometimes the worst punishment is to have to explain one's stupidity. DC's punishment should be to have to come forward and tell the class what the hell she was thinking. Part of the problem with our entertainment culture of revenge porn and violent retribution is that it encourages this weird fantasy life where you end up with all these would be Walter Mittys and their projectile-spewing metal penises, always getting the Bad Guy, always Saving The Day. It's unusual for women to fall for this Everyman Action Hero nonsense, but there are female morons too.

Friday, October 02, 2015

Down with the Sickness

How many times can you hear it? It goes on all day long. Everyone knows everything, and no one's ever wrong  -- until later.... -- Rush, Show Don't Tell

Another week, another mass shooting. Let the rush to assumptions begin:  he was a jihadist hunting Christians; no, he was a radicalized atheist hunting Christians; no, he was a gun nut and Irish Republican Army(!) sympathizer who was -- wait for it -- hunting Christians.

The real story is not how, in a nation of 320 million people with even more guns, and fairly liberal gun laws compared with most of the rest of the world, some of those folks turn out to be psychopaths, armed and dangerous. Those are, unfortunately, the odds we're playing here. The real story is how quickly so many people from every point across the political spectrum were able to fit the actions of some random, deranged asshole into their political template.

I don't know what the deal with this idiot was, and neither do you. It's barely been 36 hours; the feebs are still sifting through his search history, trying vainly to limn clues and piece some sort of narrative to make sense of the senseless, to describe why crazy people do crazy things, when sufficiently motivated and locked and loaded.