Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Sodomy, Not for Fun or Profit

So I get my paycheck last Friday, and when I look at it, I'm short an hour of overtime pay. Since I'm leaving early, I don't have time to pursue the issue that day. Today rolls around and my foreman gets the payroll lady to copy the relevant time cards. Sweet... I can't read much of anything on them except where the shop superintendent has HAND WRITTEN my times in several places and rounded the time to the nearest 1/4 hour. Mother fuck!

Now I must digress here a bit and explain that for the better part of a year our time clock at work has run fast. Also, we have a horn that signals start, stop, lunch, etc that runs off it's own clock During the winter, it was the horn that was fucked first, going off about three minutes fast. We bitched, we moaned, we got excuses. No one new how to reset the damn thing; the damn thing was set as accurately as possible, the damn thing changes itself all on its own. The answer ended up being: Not to reset the horn to the right time, but to move the time clock to the wrong time. Wonderfuckingful. For me, I usually get to work about 5 - 10 minutes early, so maybe I'm only 2 minutes early under this scenario.

Well a few months later, daylight savings comes along, and for the first day the horn and time clock are off by an hour, and 3 minutes, and will obviously need to be reset (which couldn't be done months ago.) So it gets reset. Great. But it gets reset wrong again. By the usual three minutes? No, this time it's FIVE minutes. More bitching, more excuses. This time the best excuse is actually the super's explanation that he's doing us a favor, because if you're like him who has to drive by two Boeing plants leaving five minutes earlier makes all the difference in the world. So we're not on Pacific Time anymore, we're on W____ time. We're not even on the same time as our company's office. NOW, I'm getting to work 2 - 3 minutes late.

For a while, while we bitched, he bitched. Then he started dinging all of us who came straggling in for the few hundredths of an hour we'd miss. I was able to laugh off as pettiness, the paychecks for 39.92 hours. Then a couple of weeks ago he hit another guy with the, "If he can't be here for all the overtime, no overtime at all," routine. A week later it was my turn to go "on restriction." I was still able to laugh it off as his pettiness. I guess it's all fun and games till someone gets fucked, right?

OK, OK, you ask why I don't just go along and adjust my schedule accordingly. Fair enough; simple enough. But God dammit, the fucker's wrong to do what he's doing. Sure a company can decide what the starting time is and change it at will, but there are right ways and wrong ways to do things. Yes I suppose you can say I'm being as childish as the boss is. Yes I suppose you can say I'm cutting my nose off to spite my face. But, but, but... the fucker's wrong. But the fucker's also still the boss.

So I'm in a dilemma. His fucking with my card is definitely illegal. His fucking with the time clock, while not illegal, seems definitely unethical. I have seen in the past the company warn guys for being late, both verbally and in writing, and even firing them if they don't straighten up. But I've never heard of anyone being docked like this; not even after a warning. Seems pretty clear to me that I can nail his ass either through the Union, or through the state via Labor and Industry. The problem is, he'll still be the fucking boss, and I have no doubt whatsoever that if he loses the battle, he'll definitely be out to make it a war and win.

What to do, what to do. He likes to brag about no one ever filing a grievance against him. Do I become the first, putting ten years of seniority with three weeks of vacation at risk? Or do I swallow it all and allow him to continue to play games and manipulate us all? reason with him somehow? I haven't seen or heard of that happening yet. I feel like I'm fucked no matter which way I turn.

Anyone out there been in a shitty situation at work like this? What'd you do about it? Was it worth it to you, whatever your actions?

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Sex, Lies, and Video

Two posts you absolutely MUST read. First this one from Firestarter, on the latest twisted BS from Fucks News. Second, this one from DCup; it has to be the absolute funniest thing I've read in ages, but oh how I wish it could come to pass.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Smart Questions; Stupid Answers

Someone put up a sign where I work not long ago that merely said, "Fuck it." I noticed a few days later that someone added to it, "OK, but you're it." Not in the same way at all, but Jess has decided I'm it. This is a first for me, but here goes. My answers to five questions of which I've never thought:

1. Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2008. Our side won! How do you celebrate?

Hmmm.... Call in sick to start. Bang the beejeezus out of the wife. Double shots of Irish Cream in my coffee. Host a barbecue for the neighborhood.

2. Are you on a boat or are you a land lubber or do you soar?

I live in a house, on land, but I love being on the water. I fished and crabbed when I lived in Southeast Alaska, and there's nothing like falling asleep on a boat at anchor. It's just like being rocked to sleep in a cradle. Of natural DD boobs. on a different note, I consider myself a fairly down-to-earth logical person. Not highly imaginative, unless the subject is a bit perverse. Fairly predictable, unless in mixed company and expected to behave.

3. What was the last mistake you wished you could cover up?

Probably that time I was wrong. Actually, I can't really think of one, and that's not meant to imply that I'm at all perfect. There's no real need to cover up honest mistakes. It's intentional lies, law breaking and outright stupidity that need covering, like Vitter's shit, or giving over your credit card in a titty bar.

4. Are your omelettes fluffy?

Shit. I haven't attempted one in about ten years. Now I'm going to have to go make one to find out.

5. When was the last time your paradigm shifted?

"Paradigm: 1: model, pattern 2: a systematic inflection of a verb or noun showing a complete conjugation or declension." Riiiiight... Hmmmmm... Welllllll... Since being married and having a step-family, it seems like things are constantly shifting. Dealing with my mother-in-law's dementia is always a challenge. It's gotten to the point now, where she doesn't know where she lives most of the time. Then there's life with the step-daughter and grandmonster. They recently moved in after she decided to kick her oxycontin addiction. She and I NEVER got along, but she's been taking her treatment/recovery seriously and is undergoing some real changes. I hope that she continues, but I fear that she won't. She's earned a bit of my respect, and I've actually come to kind of like her. I don't have to put up with her; I can enjoy her company and conversation. Sounds easy, right?

Life was easier when I hated her. I never gave a rat's ass what she did, or if she got into trouble -- except with regards as to how she would pawn off the consequences to my wife and I. Now I worry. I don't want to see her relapse into the bitch-queen she was, who thought that acting grown up and accumulating things, was the same as being grown up and earning your place in life. She wants to act like a teenager and I want to slap her silly and ground her even though I know that neither would do her any good. She talks about guys and instead of me worrying about them knowing what they light be getting into, I worry about her getting her heart broken or just feeling used and thrown away. I'm not used to that. At all. It's like being a fucking dad or something.

There. Done.

BOHICA folks

I have yet to ever listen to one of Dubya's weekend radio addresses. I don't know what, if any, local station carries them, and I don't care to find out. I go through this tearing of emotions: On the one hand I don't believe he has anything worthwhile to say; on the other hand it's important to keep up with what he plans to fuck up from day to day. Regardless of my mood, I usually can't listen or watch him for more than two to three minutes before I'm screaming and cursing (literally) at what a piece of shit he is. As much as I want to take a baseball bat to his head to get rid of that god damned smirk, there's a reason he wears it:

He knows he's lying virtually every time he speaks; he knows we know he's lying; he knows that we know that he knows we know; he doesn't give a fuck, because he knows he'll get away with it.

While doing my weekly, weekend catch up, I came across Glenn Greenwald's advanced copy of this weekend's address. Gizz Whiz wants to modernize FISA. Great. Ignoring the fact -- for now -- that he wants to legalize his crimes, the fact that he wants to push this through before Congress goes on break, takes me back to the initial passing of the unpatriot act, when he took his first major steps toward becoming dictator. I'll give credit where credit is due: somewhere there's a pretty good speech writer who laid out some fairly logical points. However, said writer fell asleep at the wheel and allowed this point to get in there:

Second, it seeks to restore FISA to its original focus on protecting the privacy interests of people inside the United States, so we don't have to obtain court orders to effectively collect foreign intelligence about foreign targets located in foreign locations.

Whoa. Run that by me again? The origional focus of FISA needs to be restored? Who fucked it up in the first place? (Don't answer; I know they'll say Clinton.) It doesn't presently protect our privacy interests? I thought the FISA court guaranteed that. Ahhhhh.... but he doesn't want to have to get court orders. As many times as I read this, I cannot wrap my head around it. Maybe that's a good thing; a sign my brain still works.

Anyone with a brain that's been functioning for the past six years has to realize that he'll just do whatever the fuck he wants, no matter how the law might be rewritten. He's lied about his actions before, and I have no illusions of him growing a conscience. He wants to tap our phones; he wants to read our e-mails. He's more interested in our moves than in any moves of any suspected terrorists. BEFORE 9-11 we had a shortage of people in our intelligence agencies who spoke Arabic, Farsi, and other critical languages, and he's fired many of the few we had because they were gay or of some wrong political stripe. More information, means more backlog. He wants information on US, not them.

How this Mo-Fo can say shit like this.... time to take a chill pill. Or get out the baseball bat.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Gonzo: Mr Fix-it

So Alberto's going to stick around to fix the problems with the DoJ, eh? When's he going to own up to the fact that he IS the problem? I'm not amazed any more by the arrogance of these bastards. The idea that they can offer up such bullshit without question or opposition.

I remember the hearings when he was nominated by his former DUI client. Ted Kennedy was asking him about his torture memo, wanting to know Gonzo's views: Did he write it himself? Did he believe it? Gonzo never did answer his questions directly, surprise, surprise. No, he danced around them, talking about how they were no longer operating under the guidelines of that memo, but under those of another newer one. I kept waiting for Ted to scream at him to, "Answer the Fucking question!" but he never did.

I didn't like Gonzo then, and I don't like him now. And not simply because he's W's boy. I have to wonder if he's ever answered a question honestly in his life.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Dubya... A Healthy Asshole

I heard Tony Snow Blow today: The president is in good health. There's nothing to be alarmed about. Wronggggg...

His good health IS the reason we're alarmed.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Driftglass on Friedman and Dubya

If you've never read Driftglass, read him now. Here's a sampling from an article he posted on Wednesday:

Dubya was, by any measure, a shallow, incompetent, sadistic, drunken failure most of his life, and the only reason he isn’t spending his declining years caroming soddenly off the walls of some doublewide in a West Texas trailer park, or running Lil’ Dubya’s Cut Rate Liquor and Fireworks outlet, is that his daddy had money and his daddy had clout.


There never was anything other than that –- and the fact the he inherited the keys to a ferociously powerful wingnut electoral and propaganda engine -- to recommend George W. Bush to the attention of history in any way.

As heroes are idealized versions of our virtues, Dubya is the perfect personification of our every national failing.

I can only wish I could say it that well.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Jake: 7-17-93 to 7-21-2007 RIP

Tis a sad day in the household here.

This morning the wife had to take her Mom's 14 yo standard poodle, Jake, to the vet to be put down. About 4-5 months ago we took him to the vet because he was having trouble keeping his feet under him. He was x-rayed and found to have some disintegrated disks in his back. Basically what happened to him was what I was warned might happen to me with my own back problems.

These situations are always tough, and one always has questions afterward. Could he have lived longer? Could we have done something? The answers to those two questions are definitely, Yes, but then the next question, What would his quality of life been? really has no sure answer.

For a time, he'd fall and we'd help him up with no problem, but recently we had to be very careful to lift him; he was beginning to growl and snap and show signs of pain. Anyway...

If you feel so moved today, hoist a glass to Jake, who's running in heaven where the squirrels are slow.

Another Conservative Against Bush

Wednesday I wrote about a conservative guest on the Thom Hartmann show; Thursday, although I did not write about it, Hartmann had another conservative guest. Both spoke of the need to impeach both Bush and Cheney. Today via Crooks and Liars, I discovered another article posted by a conservative, who is highly critical of Bush and the republicans, and fearful for the future of our democracy. One of the focal points of this article is the "need" for another 9-11 event to ensure the survival of the republican party in the next election. Sorry for the lack of a link, but the chairman of the Arkansas Republican Committee has already called for another terrorist attack. I firmly believe that this has been discussed and planned by the powers behind the throne.

I wouldn't call myself a conspiricist but, I've always had questions about what happened on 9-11. I've always found it curious that the twin towers fell more like they were imploded by demolition experts, rather than breaking off from the points at which they were damaged. I've heard Ed Schultz argue/preach many times how there is no way that the government could have been behind the attack in any way, but I'm not so sure. When I look at the ways this administration has relentlessly attacked the structure of this country from within, weakening our military, our economy, our alliances, the Constitution and Bill of Rights... I really can't think of a point at which they'll stop or a line they won't cross. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I firmly believe Bush will make himself dictator by 2008/9.

One common thread connects the men behind these three articles: They all worked in the Reagan Administration.

I've heard and read, time and again, how the republican party is no longer the party of Barry Goldwater, as if that's a reference to some rosier time of moderation. I was 8 yrs old when Goldwater got trounced by Johnson. Goldwater was an extremist kook. I remember the neighbor kids whose dad voted for Goldwater saying how Kennedy was a wimp because he didn't want to invade Cuba during the missile crisis like Goldwater did. Time and again we hear and read about the "good old days" of moderate conservatism under Reagan; as if. Bushco is virtually nothing more than the culmination of the desires and intents of the Reaganistas; Reaganism without checks and balances.

Reagan talked about failed government: The government is not your friend. Government is not the answer. The most feared words in the English language: We're from the government and we're here to help. Bush has brought government failure to life and made it flourish. My point being, that when hardcore Reaganistas, authors of Reaganist policies, decide that Bush has gone too far, when will the republicans elected to Congress wake up and realize for themselves that their unquestioned alignment with Bush is destroying the country? When will they realize that they're just like the frog in the pot of water, allowing themselves to be boiled alive, as the temperature slowly creeps up to boiling?

I realize there's an inherent shame in having to own up to mistakes, much like some women I've known, refusing to admit to themselves that the years and efforts spent in a dead end destructive relationship were a waste. There hopefully does come a time though, when mistakes are admitted, blame shouldered, losses accepted and shame dealt with. The past remains unchanged, but healing can begin and the present and future can be salvaged. If the repugs in congress do not wake up soon, it will be too late; there will be nothing to salvage. Time is running out. For the Repugs and for the country.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Why else does W need a colonoscopy?

To pull his crown out of his ass. Or is it to shove it up in there?

I can't believe -- actually I can believe, but wish I couldn't -- the latest bum fuckery to come from the wet dreams of this tyrant: the bastard has declared that no one has the power to question his declarations of executive privilege. Basically, we now have our very own home grown King George.

Not a good day for Olbermann to take off to stand in line for his Harry Potter book, but Glenn Greenwald is on the case, as are others I'm sure.

I'm going to be stewing on this all weekend I know.

Definitely look for a second surge in Iraq, to get more troops out of the country. That leaves Blackwater and the other mercenary companies with less opposition when Dubya makes his move to declare martial law and truly take over as dictator.

Why W needs a colonoscopy

To pass him a flash light so he can tell them what he sees.

About a year ago I had a colonoscopy done to retrieve a bridge I'd swallowed. The procedure wasn't bad, it was everything leading up to it. When I saw my Dr for my follow up, I asked her if I could get a certificate stating that my head was not up my ass. She laughed; said no one had ever asked her for one before.

My wife still insists the Doc just didn't look far enough, or she would have found it.

I wonder how far the docs will have to go to find W's head.

Olbermann rocks once again

Keith Summed it up very nicely last night when he said that Iraq is Bush's war. He voiced my sentiments when he declared that Bush himself should head to Iraq to fight and get the job done.

I've never felt a shred of ownership or responsibility for this war. I've never felt compelled in any way that I should "get behind the effort." I opposed it from the first bits of cock wagging and saber rattling, and I opposed it when Friedman came up with his assenine notion of a Dollar per gallon "Patriot Tax" on gasoline. Bush wanted this war for his own ego, and he can damn well pay for it out of his inherited Nazi blood money.

Fuck George, fuck HIS war and fuck anyone who has anything good to say about either one.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

WOW... A Conservative's Case for Impeachment

One of the few cool things about my job is that I get to do a lot of different things. For the past several, I've had the chance to work in a quiet little corner, out of few and listen to my radio. I've been a total talk-radio addict for many years now (I just can't keep track of the 10-in-a-row shit and remember which songs I liked and who did them; I know jack shit about present day music) and since 100.7FM, which used to be a cool talk talk station, went country and dumped Tom Leykis, I've been listening to 1090AM which has a great lineup of progressive talk shows. I usually never get to listen during the day but these past few, I've been able to catch Thom Hartmann from 9-noon.

This guy has always impressed me with his knowledge of the issues and times surrounding the founding of this country. I don't know if he keeps a laptop by his side, with someway to do quick reference, or if he knows them by heart, but his knowledge of the Federalist Papers seems amazing.

Today one of his guests was conservative Bruce Fein. If it's possible, the guy's credentials are excellent, including affiliations with the American Enterprise Institute, the Heritage Foundation, etc, etc and authored the articles of impeachment for Bill Clinton. The only thing I don't see, is his name on the PNAC's statement of principles. He spent quite a bit of time on Thom's show, and made a clear cut and simple case for the impeachment of both W and his Dick. He made the case without even referring to "high crimes and misdemeanors," instead focusing on W's usurpation of powers not granted by the constitution. There was no mention of lying us into a war, outing Valerie Plame, or many of the other commonly cited reasons. Instead he kept referring to this10-point proposal, spelled out at the American Freedom Agenda web site.

When someone like this starts talking impeachment, it reeeeealy makes me wonder why the hell Nancy Pelosi keeps avoiding the subject. If our Constitutional government of laws is going to survive, impeachment NEEDS to happen.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Bush's Next Bloodbath

Last week, White House spokesliar, Tony Snowjob gets all fired up over how they're beginning a new strategy in Iraq. On Sunday when Lindsay Graham said that the surge had been in place for two weeks -- a Republican week must consist of three months -- I figured they must be trying to reset the clock to give themselves another Friedman or two. Peter Punkineater Pace, then reveals that while waiting for Patraeus to complete his magic by September, he's going over the possibilities of fucking with the troop levels. (I loved his term "plussing up;" so casual. Like adding a shot of booze to a marinade.) But then today he announces dramatic changes in Baghdad and Ramadi, as if someone had waved a magic wand and made everything all hunky dory. Someone decided they needed to leak the NIE that says al Qaida is stronger than ever. Gotta love W's spin on that: They may be stronger, but we've weakened them.

OK. So WTF is going on? I mean really going on? We know the White house LOVES to play the diversion game whenever they get caught or decide to be naughty, and has all kinds of ways to do so. Just about the time you turn away in disgust because they can't find their ass with both hands and a flashlight, they pull some kind of a doozy of a disaster.

Iran. Lotsa talk going on about Iran.

W and the Neo-Cons have had a hard on for Iran for years now. More of his War Mongering Delusions and Words of Mass Deception over Weapons of Mass Destruction. Personally, if I ran a country these days, I'd want some nukes too with W on the loose. Especially if I was sitting atop some oil. (Kazakistan wants nukes now; They're trying to get the technology through a partial buyout of Westinghouse.)

Recently 97 Senators and all but two House members -- Kucinich and Paul -- voted in favor of resolutions/language declaring Iran to be in pursuit of Nuclear weapons and to be engaged in a proxy war against the US in Iraq. This point come out in the Webb/Graham episode and Webb tried to dismiss it as, "a minor clause inserted after a semi colon."

When the fuck will these people ever learn. To the Repugs there is no such thing as a minor clause; Nothing is too small that it can't be built into a mountain if it serves their purpose. So while there's all sorts of debate and deliberation going on over Iraq, even to withdraw the Authorization to Use Military Force, Congress has for all intents and purposes just given said authorization to W to enter a new bloodbath.

h/t to Arthur Silber

And for another excellent article regarding Bush's march toward Armageddon, read this by Jon Perrs, from May 2006.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Summer of Love was tough to pass up, but...

How to Win a Fight With a Conservative is the ultimate survival guide for political arguments

My Liberal Identity:

You are a Social Justice Crusader, also known as a rights activist. You believe in equality, fairness, and preventing neo-Confederate conservative troglodytes from rolling back fifty years of civil rights gains.

h/t JessWundrun

Would Someone Please Suck His Cock? PLEASE?

I've basically been speechless this week, with the never ending stream of White house bull shit continuing unabated. From Bush's Cleveland speech where he once again excuses the whole insurance/pharma cartel from any responsibility over the rising cost and failing coverage of this country's health care system, to his once again, mooning and spitting in the face of Congress by declaring executive privilege in keeping Harriet Miers from testifying. The big question every day seems to be, "Which story takes the cake?" Is it his, AGAIN, declaring executive privilege and denying congress access to documents regarding the Pat Tillman scandal? or is it the scrambling to cover asses after Chertoff's gut rumbled, yet again rewriting the national intelligence estimate's declaration regarding the strength of al Qaida and their roles in Iraq and 9-11?

His lips move, he lies. More distressing, he lies and our beloved free press fails to call him on it, as if it's somehow more treasonous to point out betrayals of the public trust, than to actually do the betraying. Most distressing of all, impeachment is still "off the table."

He can threaten a veto of a provision to lower the cost of his prescription drug nightmare by allowing Medicare to negotiate for lower prices and somehow that's OK.

He can ignore all evidence and link al Qaida with Iraq and with 9-11 and somehow that's OK.

He can declare that we must stay in Iraq to prevent it from becoming a terrorist training ground -- which it became long ago -- while allowing such a training ground to exist unmolested in Pakistan and somehow that's OK.

He can totally turn his back on New Orleans and the victims of Hurricane Katrina and somehow that's OK.

He can create the largest federal deficits in history so he can take credit for cutting them in half -- which he's failed to do, even through smoke and mirrors -- and somehow that's OK.

He can so bully the Surgeon General that he makes him little more than a snake handling tent preacher and somehow that's OK.

He can allow his Vice President to create a new branch of government to avoid any oversight or accountability and somehow that's OK.

He can tap phones and data mine the internet without warrants, out and out violating the FISA law and somehow that's OK.

He can do what he wants, say what he wants, about anything he wants, anytime he wants and somehow it's all just A-OK. When it's all said and done, he'll be able to look in the mirror and say that he followed his convictions. Yeah well, Dub

I'm sure that back in the day, Adolph Hitler could say the same thing.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Sara... Sara... Storms Are Brewin' in Your Eyes.

That Harriet Miers would not want to testify before Congress, doesn't surprise me at all; she's just another typical Bush crony who will do whatever her master wishes. Sara Taylor confuses me.

Patrick Leahy seems reluctant to serve her with a Contempt of Congress citation because she supposedly wants to testify. As I understand it, or at least the last I heard, if she doesn't testify, it will be because of the demands of the White House. I have to wonder if she's afraid of the White House, or is she just using them as cover for her covering for them? This involves the White House, so we know there's a game. The question is, "What IS the game?"

I wonder what's really going on in Taylor's head. Does she look at the Libby pardon and believe that she'll be protected just as he was if she refuses to cooperate and is cited by Congress? Or does she believe she has more to fear from White House reprisals if she does cooperate? They can't take her job since she doesn't work there any longer.

I remember a Monica Lewinski interview after Clinton's impeachment was done where the interviewer asked her something about Ken Starr. Monica first said she wasn't aloud to talk, and when pressed a bit, being asked what he could do, she took on this look of absolute terror, and said something to the effect of, "You have no idea what he might do." Ken Starr is one thing; Karl Rove is another.

We've seen what these bastards have done to get back at Joe Wilson. I wonder what threats they may have made against Taylor and her family? Gitmo maybe? This is really bugging me.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Bush is a Lying Sack of Shit

When writing about Bush that's about the only headline you'll ever need. Once again, he accuses Dems of gumming up the works, while ignoring the simple fact that his own Republican base is to blame. They couldn't pass an immigration bill when they were in charge, and they stood in the way of efforts this time. They spent more time funding Bush's War than the Dems did, yet Bush didn't complain back then like he did this past time around. They couldn't pass the spending bills last year, that the Dems are dealing with now AFTER cleaning up the mess the Repugs left behind. Again, no complaints last year, but the Dems need to "step up." The Repug controlled Congress passed his tax cuts with expiration clauses, but now that the Dems plan to let some actually expire, it's They who are to blame for "tax and spend," policies. HE supposedly stands for fiscal restraint? Riiiiight. Most sensible people that I know would think of uncontrolled deficit spending as a LACK of restraint.

It's amazed me that from the time he began campaigning in the primaries for the 2000 election, he's told lie, after lie, after lie, and no ever called him on it and made it stick. He went through how many reasons for invading Iraq? and yet it was Kerry who was the flip-flopper. When he accused Kerry of calling him a liar, I couldn't understand why Kerry would back off, and not just tell him that when the shoe fit he had to wear it.

Fuck all this, "Respect for the office," bullshit; he's proven himself unworthy in every way possible. Nancy, Harry, and all the rest of you: Stand up for yourselves and call him what he is.

P.S. Go here and sign the petition telling Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to start pointing out that it's THE REPUBLICANS who are holding up legislation and keeping Congress from getting ANYTHING done. (read the report about the obstruction and how Senate members voted on specific issues, too) (Stolen from DCup; sorry dear)

DCup Sets the Puppies Loose

Over at Politits, DCup writes an excellent post regarding Republican obstructionism and provides a link to a petition to encourage/cajole/force Harry Reid into telling it like it is: That it's the Repugs that are dragging the Senate down and NOT do-nothing Dems (unless you count Holy Joe.) I know, I should have linked to this a few days ago when I first read it . So sue me. Seriously. Check her out. She's smart, witty and apparently has a great rack.

PS While you're at it, check out her old man too. He has a math ed degree, and unlike me, actually uses it for good. From what I see so far, he'll have a wide variety of topics.

Friday, July 6, 2007

I've GOT to go see, "Sicko"

Browsing around on The Raw Story today, I came across a link to MichealMoore.com and found this little gem:

...the recent Health Care Symposium held in Harrisburg - where a panel of representatives from Government, Insurance, Hospitals, Business, Physicians, and even Lawyers agreed on one thing - that there was no quick fix and that Health and Wellness was the critical area of focus.

"...no quick fix..." Don't you just love it when the powers that be trot that phrase out: Whenever they have no fucking intention of getting off their asses to even think about fixing a problem. As to "Health and Wellness being a critical area of focus," that's bullshit as well.

I have to admit that through my union contract, my employer provides me with some pretty good coverage. It's even fairly cheap to add family members to my plan, and that's VERY important now that the wife will be quitting her job to come home and take care of her Mom. BUT, if my health care providers -- Washington Employers Trust and Beechstreet/FirstChoice were at all concerned with health and wellness, would it not make sense for my Chantix prescription to fall within their prescription coverage? I had to shell out the full $125 for the first month's supply and will have to shell out the same if I need/want another month. Wouldn't they WANT more non-smokers? Aren't non-smokers "healthier and weller?"

Now I have to admit, for me, $125 is just a minor inconvenience, but for many others it wouldn't be. In the grand scheme of things, it's another example of failed conservative policy at work and the evil behind our health care racket.

Bush: The Life Death of the Party

I'm not sure how many people are like me, but before Glenn Greenwald moved here -- Glenn Greenwald - Salon -- he was one of my daily must-read bloggers. He's extremely knowledgeable regarding constitutional law and an excellent writer, having recently published his second book.

In his most recent arcticle, which for some reason appears twice, he quotes Canadian Ian Welsh of the Agonist, from one of Ian's recent posts (see another post here.) Ian definitely seems to be in some agony as he writes about the decline of American values, and the world's increasingly poorer view of our country and our policies. You can check out this decline in another of Glenn's posts here.

I've often likened Bush's foreign policy behavior to that of a second grade playground bully, looking for weak little first grades to beat up and then running and hiding behind his fellow bully sixth grade friends. And when he's not doing the bully act, he acts like a spoiled baby, holding his breathe till he turns blue in the hopes that he'll get his way. It seems the world agrees with me at least somewhat.

Fuckin' W... He makes me so damn angry, I'm almost speechless. The 4th of July is supposed to be a celebration, when Americans show pride in our country and government. Instead, this fuck, has turned everything upside down and inside out and made this whole week one of mourning. The Libby pardon, is just the latest exhibit of his total disregard for everything American and his continuing efforts to destroy this country. Don't "misunderestimate" the damage this treasonous, criminal creature will do in the remainder of his term. Speaking of his term...

Brace yourselves for 2008 folks. Dale makes the prediction, and I TOTALLY agree, that W will not leave office. Someday, one day, I hope to write my own post on the subject. For now I will just say that there's a long trail of evidence backing up this prediction. The Libby pardon is just the latest piece of such evidence.

I Picked a Bad Time to Quit Drinking

And JP picked a bad time to retire. I've always liked this guy, but I think his recent posts are some of his best ever. It's not hard to believe that he just couldn't keep still after W pardoned Libby. Outrage has it's effects.

Toward the end of our party on the 4th, someone brought up the Libby pardon. It wasn't "the Republican," so no one went over the deck railing, but as soon as I started talking, I started looking in my cabinet for a wine glass. I held off till I calmed down before finally giving in and having a few glasses during the fireworks and after the cleanup was done. All in all though, I managed to behave myself. I'm back on the wagon since, and after the hangover I had, I think I might stay there.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Happy Independence Day

Wow. The first of five days off for me. It's going to be a busy one too.

We moved into this house five years ago; it's probably the nicest house we'll ever have. Lots of room; too much room; enough room to allow Ms Thing and the grandmonster to live here along with me and the wife and her mom. Ahhh, but it does have a second story deck with a beautiful view: Downtown Seattle, Mt Ranier, the Olympic Mountains, and best of all the 4th of July and New Years Eve fireworks. We can't see all of them but we can see two, sometimes three display and best of all: No fussing with crowds! The wife hates crowds. We discovered this when we had a housewarming party on the 4th back in 2002, and have done a 4th party every year since.

For the most part my social life with my wife could be called, "The Ex-files." Seems like most all of our social contacts have something to do with her ex. Their kids, his new wife and her kids, his new wife's kids' families... you get the picture. Dale's one of these; What the fuck are you, Dale? In proper relative terms I mean? It's OK, since I actually like most of them, but it got a bit old, and over time we've launched out, and get this: We began inviting neighbors over. This year actually will feature one of Ms Thing's friends from her recovery groups (another subject), a couple who are friends of she and her brother and a co-worker of mine; we're reeeeeally getting out there. So what to do..?

Well first off I have to tire out the dog at the off-leash park, so she doesn't drive everyone crazy. She Loves to swim, but won't fetch a good tennis ball; it has to have some cuts and holes in it; it's best if it sinks to the bottom and she has to dive for it. Next I have to get going on my cooking. A short history:

Back in about 2003, the wife made what I thought was a STUPID investment: She was craving a grilled steak and bought a gas grill. "OK. So we have a couple of $100 steaks and then watch it rust. Smooth move Ms Ex-Lax." Who'd a thunk it: I fell in love with grilling. First it was just your standard fare of burgers and steaks; then the beer can chicken; then a beer can turkey; then for Christmas, our next-door neighbor and best friend bought me a rotisserie; and just after my last birthday I bought what I hoped would be my dream grill: A 4-burner, 100% stainless steel jobbie. Coulda got a better one at Costco though; one with a rotisserie burner in the back, for $50 less; guys are never satisfied. Lots more grill surface and lots more head room. Add to all that, several cook books, and web links supplied by my neighbor -- who's one excellent cook herself -- and you have the monster I am today. I'm no pro; I can still ruin a meal with the best of 'em, but I've fallen in love with the whole process, experimenting with rubs and marinades and sauces and techniques... So for today's menu:

Pork spare ribs and chicken tenders. Two racks of the ribs will first sit with a rub consisting of some brown sugar, powdered mustard, paprika, garlic powder and onion powder. The recipe calls for some black pepper, but I'm going to skip that since the sauce I'll use -- after about one hr on the grill -- is a sweet sauce with maple syrup, ketchup, bourbon, oil Dijon mustard and cider vinegar. A third rack of ribs, for our booze-paranoid guests, will be a bit more traditional with an off-the-shelf sauce.

For the chicken, I'll use an Asian, sweet and garlicky sauce/marinade. The recipe was written up for pork chiops and I've used it before for both chops and a rotisseried loin, so today will be a first for me. I'll mixed up some brown sugar, fish (or soy) sauce, rice wine, sesame oil, grated ginger, salt and pepper and the ever present garlic (can never have too much garlic for my taste), put it an a bag with the chicken and let it stew for a few hours. The plan is to do the chicken -- which shouldn't take too long -- after the ribs, while everyone chows down and oooos and ahhhhs.

If anyone wants either recipe, drop me a note or comment, and I can either email it, or post it here for everyone. In other news of the day:

Today the wife and I plan to declare our independence from cancer sticks. The other day at Firestarter, Kimmy K mentioned a drug called Chantix. The wife's doc recommended it, my doc recommended it, my pharmacist spoke well of it... every seems to speak well of it. It's supposed to me MUCH more affective that any of the nicotine stuff out there. I've been a 1 1/2 to 2 pack a day guy for about 25 years now. I've tried cold-turkey before, but haven't lasted 24 hours -- even though I quit for 8 1/2 yrs in my twenties. Hopefully this stuff is all it's cracked up to be. You'll hear about it either way.
Lots of recovery type stuff going on around here.

It's also been a month since I've had any booze other than weekend Irish Cream in my coffee. Not sure if I'll drink anything more than that today. My brother-in-law -- not at all affectionately known as "The Republican" -- will be here and the last time he was here socially, I drank more and more, and went further and further off with everything he said. The problem is, if I'm sober, I might just be physically able to throw him off my deck. All I can do if I'm plastered is be loud and crude. This guy comes up with such gems of wisdom as, "Why's everyone complaining? The economy's better than it's ever been," and "You know, people without health insurance heal faster." He's so frickin brillyunt. The wife's biggest job today will be to keep us separated. God help us all if she fails.

So there you have it. What's on your agenda?

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

The REAL Scooter Libby Pardon Press Release

One of the simple truths in life as we now know it, is that George W, rarely, if ever, tells the truth about his intentions and what he's doing. Remember, this is the guy who among other things, declared National Parks Week while cutting National Park funding, and signed a deficit reduction bill that gave out more in tax cuts than it took back in budget cuts. He always means the opposite of what he says. So, let's take a closer look at his press release from yesterday regarding Scooter Libby's pardon, and see what really meant.

The United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit today rejected Lewis Libby's request to remain free on bail while pursuing his appeals for the serious convictions of perjury and obstruction of justice. As a result, Mr. Libby will be required to turn himself over to the Bureau of Prisons to begin serving his prison sentence.

What he really meant was:

Activist judges, in a silly attempt to uphold the rule of law, today shafted Scooter Libby just for doing what we all do here in the White House all the time. As a result, poor Scooter's supposed to go to the big house, where he might be forced to squeal.

I have said throughout this process that it would not be appropriate to comment or intervene in this case until Mr. Libby's appeals have been exhausted. But with the denial of bail being upheld and incarceration imminent, I believe it is now important to react to that decision.

What he really meant was:

Did you really expect me to keep quiet and stay out of this? Come on; Ya'll knew I wouldn't.

From the very beginning of the investigation into the leaking of Valerie Plame's name, I made it clear to the White House staff and anyone serving in my administration that I expected full cooperation with the Justice Department. Dozens of White House staff and administration officials dutifully cooperated.

What he really meant was:

I made it clear from the start that no one was to say jack shit, while trying to look cooperative. They all did a heckuva job at it too.

After the investigation was under way, the Justice Department appointed United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois Patrick Fitzgerald as a Special Counsel in charge of the case. Mr. Fitzgerald is a highly qualified, professional prosecutor who carried out his responsibilities as charged.

What he really meant was:

But someone in Justice fucked up big time, and we got this loose cannon, Fitzgerald in there, who thought he was supposed to do a real investigation. Gonzo shoulda fired him too, dumbass.

This case has generated significant commentary and debate. Critics of the investigation have argued that a special counsel should not have been appointed, nor should the investigation have been pursued after the Justice Department learned who leaked Ms. Plame's name to columnist Robert Novak. Furthermore, the critics point out that neither Mr. Libby nor anyone else has been charged with violating the Intelligence Identities Protection Act or the Espionage Act, which were the original subjects of the investigation. Finally, critics say the punishment does not fit the crime: Mr. Libby was a first-time offender with years of exceptional public service and was handed a harsh sentence based in part on allegations never presented to the jury.

What he really meant was:

Everybody but the good folks a Fox News has been bitching about this from all along. The rest of You couldn't leave it alone. We gave you a perfectly good fall guy, and you had to keep digging. Thanks to Scooter, no one, including him, got charged with a real crime, and now you want to fuck him. This is the very first time he ever got caught lying after years of doing a heckuva job at it.

Others point out that a jury of citizens weighed all the evidence and listened to all the testimony and found Mr. Libby guilty of perjury and obstructing justice. They argue, correctly, that our entire system of justice relies on people telling the truth. And if a person does not tell the truth, particularly if he serves in government and holds the public trust, he must be held accountable. They say that had Mr. Libby only told the truth, he would have never been indicted in the first place.

What he really meant was:

There's a lot of talk about testimony and evidence and a jury and all that, and that they found him guilty, but they weren't supposed to, 'cause all that stuff just applies to little people. They shoulda never even indicted him for just telling a few little white lies, 'cause people in my government aren't little people.

Both critics and defenders of this investigation have made important points. I have made my own evaluation. In preparing for the decision I am announcing today, I have carefully weighed these arguments and the circumstances surrounding this case.

What he really meant was:

Well enough of this shit; I'm the decider. I sat on the crapper and thought about it and decided I had to decide.

Mr. Libby was sentenced to thirty months of prison, two years of probation, and a $250,000 fine. In making the sentencing decision, the district court rejected the advice of the probation office, which recommended a lesser sentence and the consideration of factors that could have led to a sentence of home confinement or probation.

What he really meant was:

You know the sentence and you know it's fucked. Bull shit never shoulda happened.

I respect the jury's verdict. But I have concluded that the prison sentence given to Mr. Libby is excessive. Therefore, I am commuting the portion of Mr. Libby's sentence that required him to spend thirty months in prison.

What he really meant was:

Fuck the jury and fuck the judge, and fuck that thirty month sentence. I say Scooter don't have to do it.

My decision to commute his prison sentence leaves in place a harsh punishment for Mr. Libby. The reputation he gained through his years of public service and professional work in the legal community is forever damaged. His wife and young children have also suffered immensely. He will remain on probation. The significant fines imposed by the judge will remain in effect. The consequences of his felony conviction on his former life as a lawyer, public servant, and private citizen will be long-lasting.

What he really meant was:

I left all the other shit, and you better be happy about that. Look, he and his wife and kids are gonna get looked at funny for who knows how long. He's gonna have to report to people, just like I did when I was staying out of 'Nam. The fine his friends are gonna have to pay for him should sound like a lot of money to most folks. And he's gonna have to keep a low profile for a while when he goes back to work for Dick.

The Constitution gives the President the power of clemency to be used when he deems it to be warranted. It is my judgment that a commutation of the prison term in Mr. Libby's case is an appropriate exercise of this power.

What he really meant was:

Just to keep all you fuckers of my back, let me remind you that there's a Constitution and it says I can do this.

Has SCOTUS Declared War on Costco?

(Am I alone in this? Does SCOTUS make you think of Scrotum / Scrota? )

On my way to work yesterday, I was kinda pissed to find that Stephanie Miller was on vacation. I like Elaine Boosler OK and all that, but she's not Steph. But I listened. After all, it was easier than searching my '68 Mustang's AM dial for something different. Well...

They got talking about the Supreme Court's recent decisions, and dropped this one in the mix.
The bastards overturned a decision from 1911. The first thought that came to mind was, "What'll this do to COSTCO?" Miraculously, I didn't forget about it during the day, and went looking last night, after making my Libby rant. I'm nothing close to a legal scholar, but what it looks like to me, is that SCOTUS has allowed manufacturers to tell retailers the minimum they have to charge us for their products. Kennedy in his majority opinion, seemed to go to great links to try to explain how this will benefit consumers and spur competition. I don't see it.

With all the hubbub about the recent decisions regarding abortion and school segregation, I don't know if this one's going to get much play in any media, but it should. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to show a lack of respect for precedent and settled law, as well as showing how little respect the conservative side of the court has for the rights and needs of those of us struggling to stretch our hard earned cash.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Scooter Skates

I have no idea what all the blogger buzz is, and I didn't get to watch the end of Countdown to see if Keith had one of his patented rants, but I'm sure anyone with a brain in their head is livid. I'm actually shocked and surprised that it wasn't a full pardon. That W would pay lip service to, respecting the jury's decision, doesn't surprise me at all. So easily and fluidly do the lies flow forth after years of practice. I wonder if he even knows when he's lying anymore..?

Such total disregard for what Libby did. It's not just Libby, nor the crimes themselves that he committed, but the crimes of W, Dick and the rest, that he covered up. The unmitigated gall, the total lack of any moral compass, the high mindedness, the short sightedness and pettiness that these creatures exhibit enrages me. That he's sold so many on the notion that he's stupid, that he's a frat-boy, that he's just a stumble bum in over his head, shows the true depth of his, and his handlers, evil genius.

Joe Wilson called bullshit on one of his many lies, and in his pettiness, he took out his revenge on Wilson's wife. Somehow he felt entitled; to be above question. In their short sightedness and conceit, they refused to look beyond the outing of one individual, ignoring the fact that it was more than she they outed. They outed an entire covert network: agents, contacts, and all of their families and associates. No one with any hint of morality and values, would stoop so low as to put untold lives at risk, all for the petty end of attaining personal revenge.

Don't tell me you're a Christian, George. Don't tell me God talks to you. Not any God I've ever known. The only purity about you, is your evilness. What the fuck are you really doing? What are you really hiding?

This administration goes to such great pains to place as much distance between themselves and Bill Clinton as they can, proclaiming themselves to be the benevolent ones, here to put the country and the White House on a higher plain. I remember Bill being asked about his affair with Monica and him answering to the effect of, "I did it for the most despicable reason of all; I did it because I could."

Guess what, George, you treasonous bastard, you're worse than Clinton could ever hope to be. The fact that you could let Scooter skate, the fact that it's a power you didn't have to usurp to use, that for once the offense you commit may not be impeachable, doesn't make the action any less despicable. It may even make it more so.


Well I'll be dipped. I wrack my brain and slave over my keyboard and come up with a catchy title, and what do I wake up to in the morning? This morning's Seattle PI headline.

Hmmm... Now what?

Well the weekend was certainly interesting. I wound up with a blog I had no intention of starting, and for two days, I've been like a little boy with a new toy: I did everything but sleep with it. It's easy to play with this when free time is plentiful, but now that I have to go back to work, I'm wondering how/when I'm going to make time to post. I still haven't done my morning blog stroll, and I've only glanced at the Seattle PI. A big reason for this is my mother-in-law; more details later, as I'm sure she'll become a thread/label here, but in short, she requires a lot of care when she's awake. And now comes the grandmonster, dressed and ready for his first day of summer day camp.

Things get hectic with the extended family: Wife, mo-in-law, step-daughter and her 21st-birthday-present-to-herself, and they all provide fodder for posts. All of them except Mo-in-law, want time for themselves on our one 'puter with web service. Guess we need to get Ms Thing and the grandmonster online downstairs. I'd like to make at least two posts per day, and not just fluff stuff, and/or links to things people have likely already read. I'm already about to make myself late for work.

No one said blogging is easy. I've resisted the urge for over a year till now, because I knew it wouldn't be easy. Damn I hate self-discipline.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

I do more than just sit around all day hatin' on W

although that seems to be what I do best. Check this out:

Hargrove resigns as Mariners' manager!!!! Who'd a thunk it? Right when they're on a roll! Right when they're about to have a glut of pitching from guys coming off the DL! When they're having their best season in years! I know he was on the hot seat when the season started, but surely not now. I know a lot of people questioned his actions when he took time off for his daughter's graduation, leaving during a game. Maybe this is why he hired John McClaren as his bench coach this year..? McClaren's always wanted to manage. Oh well...

I gotta say I always liked the job Hargrove did in Cleveland. If we hadn't had Lou Piniella, I would have liked to have seen the Ms hire Hargrove when the Indians fired him. I think this year may have been one of his best efforts yet (with little help from GM Bill Bavasi's trades and hirings.) My only criticism of Mike is that he never used his bench players as much as I would have liked. Whatever Mike's reasons, I hope he does well in whatever he decides to do next. I truly wish him well. That being said...

I like John McClaren. I hope he does well and I think he can. He's certainly had the chance to learn from two of the better managers out there.

Union Members...

Ever wonder why you pay those dues? Besides allowing your business agent the opportunity to sample champagne and lap dances in the VIP rooms of Vegas? Well, via Crooks and Liars, here's a damn good reason: Ask a Lawyer. Too often we sit back and bitch about how "they" do nothing for us. Well check out your union's website and I think you'll be surprised. Take advantage of what they offer.

And support those who support the rights of workers to organize.

Oh Freddie T... with the plaid shirt and pickemup truck...

The Hall and Oates, "Beenie G and the Rose Tattoo," when you read the title and I think you've got a good start on a campaign theme song. Any way...

While writing my previous post I got thinking about an exchange between myself and a former boss back in '94. It was post election time, and I was living in East Tennishoe at the time. Freddie had just defeated... Tim (?) Duncan (can't remember his first name, but he did come up with the so-called Clinton-Lite plan on health care) for a Senate seat. I'd also just replaced my trusty, yet worn out Plymouth Arrow with a '91 Dodge Dakota. I really loved working for this guy, even though he red as red could be when it came to conservative/repugnican/redneck beliefs. As a matter of fact, I'd still work for the guy if he wasn't so far back in BFE that they had to bring sunshine in by truck. But I digress...

We were talking about election results, and I asked him, "What would you say if, now that I've bought my truck, I'm going to quit working overtime, and get all my bills paid off and save to invest?" "I'd say you're crazy," he said. "Well, that's what you voted for: A crazy idea."

You see, during one debate, Freddie and Duncan were asked about taxes. Duncan wanted to make taxes "fair;" Freddie was going to, "...cut taxes, increase defense spending and balance the budget," things just about everybody loves to hear, but absolutely crazy when you tie them together like that. And yet, there are otherwise intelligent people out there who swallow this shit whole, and vote for their own demise.

Jane Hamsher, at Firedoglake, has more on Freddie, here.

Hey Dale... Lookie, lookie

Yesterday I was talking about the repugs standing in the way of doing anything good for the country, well Digby has a lot to say on the matter here. How the fuck anyone can support conservatives and their bull shit is beyond me. The sheer stupidity required to put our government, and the future of our country and future generations, into the hands of creatures who believe that government cannot and should not do good things for people, boggles my mind.

I'm not surprised that W has a sub-30% approval rating. I'm surprised his approval rating is even measurable.