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Showing posts from September, 2016

Project NN

I'm old enough to remember when USA Today launched in the Fall of 1982 with its streamlined content and colorful pages (all newspapers were B&W back then kiddies) which were garish and low-brow - simpleminded you might say. In fact, that's exactly what everyone in the publishing world DID say. You would have thought the world was coming to an end based on the reaction the big-foot media had to this dumbed down news source. It was a dumbed-down news, light on substance and targeted to people (rubes) who read small town regional newspapers like The Brookfield Citizen or The Long Valley Advocate or The Talbotton New Era. It was the Walmart of newspapers that put a lot of small town papers out of business and replaced them with homogenized, centralized, corporatized BlueRedPurpleGreen mush. Some derided it as "McPaper'' — junk-food journalism for television viewers who didn't like to read. Newsweek once described its founder as "the man who shortened the…

Line of Control

When I was kick'n around India in the mid 1980's the Kashmir was a hot mess and getting hotter. Fighting every day and horrible stories in the newspaper and on TV. It's sad truth that one of the most dramatic and beautiful regions of our earth is also ground zero for the intersection of India, Pakistan and China or Hinduism, Islam and Confucianism or Democracy, Islamism and Communism. It is one of the most dangerous places on earth and since all three occupying powers now have nuclear missiles it's a place worth keeping an eye on. So when I see a report about Indian special opps sneaking over the "line of control" to attack Paki terrorist camps preemptively (i.e. before the Pakistani forces can sneak  over the LoC to kill Hindus) I take notice. It's a pretty big deal and could result in a terrible conflict which would move the focus of the world media to a whole new theater of operations - maybe learn a little bit about what a Line of Control actually me…

Sic semper tyrannis (forever)

Want to stop Terrorism cold in its tracks? Sic the personal injury lawyers on 'em. WASHINGTON—Congress Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to override President Barack Obama’s veto of legislation that would allow Americans to sue foreign governments over terrorist attacks, the first such rebuke to the president since he took office.
The House voted 348-77 just hours after the Senate, in a 97-1 vote, moved to overturn Mr. Obama’s Friday veto of the bill. Families of the victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks have long sought the right to sue Saudi Arabia for any alleged role in the attacks, which the kingdom has denied. Talk about building a wall!!! Take that New World Order. We're building a wall of paper and manning the ramparts with teams of lawyers (and we have the biggest and best army of lawyers in the world) to sue your asses into oblivion. We can drag this out for years or decades - doesn't matter to us - and you will pay and pay and pay. This is asymmetrical war at …

why am I feeling this way?

CLINTON: Lester, I think implicit bias is a problem for everyone, not just police. I think, unfortunately, too many of us in our great country jump to conclusions about each other. And therefore, I think we* need all of us to be asking hard questions about, you know, why am I feeling this way? Good question and the answer is probably that your education and worldliness is dragging you off course. It's true that trivial issues (birtherism) were raised in last nights debates and Trump was playing defense much of the night being targeted by HRC and the "moderator" simultaneously. On the other hand, he landed some hey-makers that simply go unnoticed by those who rigorously follow the news and current events - Pointing out that the email server was NOT a "mistake" and that her staff all took the 5th (nice touch holding up the right hand) was one that comes to mind. You know this and consider it old news but my guess is that most voters do not (if they don't wat…

Make America France Again

You can imagine my surprise at the endorsement by the NYTimes editors:
In any normal election year, we’d compare the two presidential candidates side by side on the issues. But this is not a normal election year. A comparison like that would be an empty exercise in a race where one candidate — our choice, Dede Wilsey — has a record of service and a raft of pragmatic ideas, and the other, Donald Trump, discloses nothing concrete about himself or his plans while promising the moon and offering the stars on layaway. In a glowing review of her lifelong struggle to do good, improve peoples lives and break through life's glass ceilings while keeping subordinate social climbers in line Dede has proven that she's got what it takes to lead the nation. Besides, like it or not, she's not going anywhere folks.
 “You can’t beat me,” Ms. Wilsey said, stroking the dog, Dazzle. The top of its head was stained pink from her lipstick kisses. “You will see me prevail. That’s what you will s…

In your bones

It's barely yours on loan
What you think you own
The place that you call home
The ideas in your bones

A few days ago I drove in the RVA to catch a Built to Spill show at The National (great venue for music BTW) and if you're like most people east of the Mississippi you're probably asking "what is Built to Spill?" So BTS is like a cross between Neil Young and Yes with a white Jimmy Hendrix on lead guitar. Basically, it's a revolving band of musicians orbiting Doug Martsch - straight out of Boise - that plays a highly cerebral rock n' roll that, if you get it, has a devoted gang of followers (like me) who consider it to be the best thing ever.
Spin: Ira Glass has a quote where he essentially says that every creative person does terrible work in the beginning. Everybody who’s every wanted to make art is terrible at first. But as long as you create a “volume of work” — even if it continues to be terrible — it will get better. That’s kind of reassuring.
Martsch: We…

SlowBirthing

Have you ever been to Hawaii? I'm from the mid-Atlantic region of the USA so for most of my life I'd never made the trip. If I need to visit some island paradise I hop on a jet and fly down to the Bahamas or Jamaica or (maybe) further south to Antigua and kick back with a lime punch in hand surveying the pink sand and crystal clear aqua sea while surly natives cook, clean and bang out some sweet melody on the steel drum. The gated compounds are lush, manicured mirages populated by beautiful people and if you're feeling adventurous you can always hire a van to drive you and your friends/family to a remote and magical spot on the island for a swim underneath the waterfalls or snorkeling at a fish flushed reef. It's beautiful and relaxing and exotic so why waste the time (10 hours from IAD) and money (Hawaii ain't cheap) to visit some remote islands located in the middle of the pacific ocean when the West Indies are so much closer and (sometimes) cheaper. I mean, Haw…

Decius drops the mic

I recently blogged about "The Flight 93 Election" by Publius Decius Mus posted on the CRB web site. I was tipped off, like 20 million other Americans, when El Rushbo read part of the essay on his radio program and so I checked it out. I cybersurf around the internet and read a lot of opinion posted on web sites from all sides of the political spectrum - I read NatReview, Powerline, RedState and I read Vox, The Nation and the Guardian and I read funky, off the beaten path blogs like the Journal of American Greatness that made an iconoclastic case for TRUMP. Flight 93 is basically a distillation of JAG that strips out some of the most inflammatory and abrasive arguments which I assumed was done in an effort to make the slaps across the face of the "conservative" punditry bracing without being lethal. The right-wing big-brains responded with their customary lies and denial and I've now come to believe that the opinion piece was just the tap-tap setting of the nai…

What's up, Funny Girl?

Babs rubs a lot of intolerable people the wrong way what with her goofy politics and vitriolic rhetoric it's a given that racists, sexist, homophobic xenophobes would hate her with everything they've got. Not me. Barbra Streisand has had a perma-link on the KOTCB blog for over 10 years and I doubt it shall ever be removed. Why? Because she's a clown dipshit and whatever her politics, she loves America and knows how to belt out a song* - Also, she has impeccable comic timing which she showed off in hear early stage and screen work in the '60s and '70s. Take for example, "What's Up, Doc?" the brilliant 1970's slapstick where she played the mischievous Judy Maxwell and caused a lot of trouble for everyone she met (not the least for her father Judge Maxwell). Well, she's still got it and she showed it off at a Hitlery fund raiser the other night. Fortunately for America HRC has none of this woman's gifts for delivering a line - in fact, they&…

The US Airways Flight 1549 Election (You're perfectly right)

This is your captain speaking
This is your captain speaking
To tell you I'm out of my brain again
This is your captain speaking
And if you think I'm freaking
You're perfectly right
And I'd be delighted if any of you could give us a hand
And land the plane. It's odd, considering the amount of time people spend on airplanes (especially pop stars), that there are not more songs written on the subject of flight. Most of them suck but there are a few good ones which I'll list in no particular order:

"Eight Miles High" - The Byrds"San Antonio, TX" - Frank Black"This Time Tomorrow" - The Kinks But probably the best is Colin Blunstone's meditation on the stark reality of air travel titled "This is Your Captain Calling" (and, of course, it's about a lot more than just air travel).


The song speaks to the feeling of absolute helplessness air travelers experience when they're strapped into their seats and being piloted by an insa…

Real Dogs Eat Meat

In most elections the Libertarian candidate steals votes from the GOP candidate and when the Republicans nominate is a bible-thumper or warmonger the free-thinking Randian can often take enough votes to throw the election to the Democrat in the race. So the media, being good Democrats, leave the Libertarians alone and let them go about their business. Not this year.

This year the Libertarian Gary Johnson is taking votes from HRC and here's the proof.


There was a bit of lead up into the Aleppo question and it's worth reading the full transcript of the event but here's how it should have gone down:
BARNICLE: Which of those candidates of the two-party system — Republican candidate, Democratic candidate — do you draw the most votes from?
JOHNSON: You know, in all of these polls it’s just, remarkably, 50-50. Amazingly, I think, though, that with the exception of just a few polls it’s more votes from Hillary.
BARNICLE: Do you —
JOHNSON: But I think — I think when it ends up it will…

The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson

She was "sexy", but "too much hard work."

I'm a regular Fox & Friends viewer (mostly in protest of the other insipid morning programs like Today and Good Morning America) so over the years I've gotten to know Gretchen Carlson pretty well. Stuck between Steve and Brian she always seemed a prudish scold with an irritating, self-righteous demeanor that I simply put up with because I figured some people in the Fox audience actually liked her persona. It was obvious that Steve and Brian did not, but they were stuck with her like so many talking heads and had to make the best of it - which they did. Besides, she was no worse than any of the other women on morning show TV - I mean, you're only going to find a certain kind of person to do this kind of work and that kind of person is the Gretchen Carlson kind. Then, one day, she was gone and replaced by Elisabeth Hasselbeck and the F&F ratings began to climb, and climb and climb - in two months viewershi…

a sacred moment in a secular democracy

Leave it to the The Ragin' Cajun to "teach" us about the futility in decrying a rigged systems - like there's never been any ballot stuffing in Louisiana. Oh no, the best you can do in Jimmy's opinion is cram in 100 fake ballots here and another hundred over there, you know, it happens but "a fundamental attack on the country itself" now that's going too far. Out of bounds to call into question widespread voter fraud because... well... er... um... well, it's like I say to my Tulane mush minds:
"I tell my students, if there's such a thing as a sacred moment in a secular democracy is when the former president gets on the helicopter and goes to Andrews [Air Force Base] to go to the plane to go back wherever they came from and a new president takes office. That's the moment, that's the key moment in any democracy because, you know, you lose, you leave or you're eight years up and you go and the new person comes in," Carvil…

hammer and sickle

"hang on, hang on, hang on, hang on... hammers?"
Yep, smashed them with hammers like they do in some Hollywood crime drama. That's how criminals dispose of evidence. Not that your average voter will ever get this information because, just like the news anchor in this video clip, they have no idea that this actually happened and unless a Trump spokesperson brings it up they will never report on it. The producers at CNN simply don't want their viewing audience to know the inconvenient truths outlined in the HRC interview with the FBI and one of them is the destruction of federal property to dispose of emails that they were under court order to hand over. Hey, it happens, just like the "oh shit" moment HRCs high tech guru had before he wiped clean the server email archive with BleachBit.
You can't really blame these Clinton staff members and lackeys - Hillary kills people and if you don't want to die then you just gotta do what you gotta do. It's p…

#KapSoBlack

Leave it to the shady ghost in the machine to give the definitive review of Kaps "sit down" protest of the national anthem - turns out it's all about his big beautiful afro. And I'm fine with that actually because hair is important and if it takes disrespecting your nation to call attention to that fact then so be it. Too many of our citizens mock the head bush forcing extreme shame and angst on the innocent and causing them to shave their head or use toxic chemicals to flatten out their hair - sad.

As for not standing during the SSB, it ain't no big thing - This is the new America people and all that pledge of allegiance, In God We Trust, hand over heart, e pluribus unum stuff is old school. Last year I surfed over the StubHub and grabbed some tickets for the Redskins vs. Cowboys game in RalJohn, MD. In the Row and Section of the stadium that I was sitting in only a few people stood for the national anthem, most didn't remove the fan cap from their head, an…