Friday, December 24, 2004
Thursday, December 23, 2004
I'm driving my stepdad's pickup truck, since my car (a truly badass 1977 black Trans Am straight out of "Smokey and the Bandit") is back in Lubbock. I've been running errands all morning, including doing a load of laundry at the Kwik Wash. My shirts, folded and still warm from the dryer, are sitting in a paper bag on the seat between me and Sean.
(So far, it all sounds very Beverly Hillbillies, doesn't it? Between growing up in Garland and driving that Trans Am, I'm lucky I didn't wind up marrying my sister. But I digress...)
In the year since we both left high school, Sean and I have put a lot of effort into redefining ourselves. I'm trying to pass myself off as an obnoxious frat boy, and he's totally immersed himself in that horrible 80s rave scene. We're both being pretentious as hell, each trying to dazzle the other with how COOL we've become.
I'm asking Sean about the old gang, and he's bringing me up to date. Just as he starts telling me about our friend Steve Bruce, a cop pulls up behind us. No lights, no siren, nothing. Just a police car, following along behind us. But in high school, I used to get pulled over so often that it became something of a joke. So I sigh and mutter, "Oh, great. I wonder what he wants."
Sean, always good in a crisis, keeps turning around and looking at the cop. "He's still there," he informs me helpfully.
"Well, stop looking at him," I say. "Otherwise, he's going to think we've got a body in the back of the truck."
We continue another mile or so, and the policeman stays on our tail. So finally, at the next stop sign, I take a left onto a side street. The cop just continues on straight. Feeling like I've dodged some kind of bullet, I breathe a sigh of relief.
We wind through the residential streets and make our way back to the main road. And we reach the four-way stop just as that same policeman pulls up to it!
The cop turns left, glaring at me as he drives past. It's creepy, but I don't really think anything about it. I turn left, and we continue on our way to the Dairy Queen.
About ten minutes later, the policeman is behind us again, lights flashing. I pull over, and he walks up to speak to me through the window. He's a fat guy with a walrus mustache and enormous sweat stains under his pits. Garland's Finest.
"Can I see your license and insurance please?" he asks. I fish them out of my wallet and hand them to him.
"What seems to be the problem, officer?" I ask.
"This your truck?" he asks me.
"No, it's my dad's. Why? What's wrong?"
He shrugs. "We've had a bunch of burglaries in this area, and the suspects match your description. And your friend there kept looking back at me like he was nervous, and then you turned off the road like you were trying to get away from me."
"We weren't trying to get away," I lie. "We were just on our way to lunch and we were going to check with a friend of ours and see if he wanted to go."
"What's this friend's name?" the policeman asks.
For some reason, Sean and I are totally in synch on this one. "Steve," we both say in unison.
"Steve Bruce," Sean and I both say in unison.
"Where does Steve Bruce live?"
"I don't know," I tell the officer, and jerk a thumb towards Sean. "He was giving me directions."
"I don't know the address," Sean says. "I just know which house is his."
The cop nods, then heads back to his car to check on our story. He spends about ten minutes on the radio before he finally walks back up to us. "Can you boys account for your whereabouts last weekend?"
In a voice of strained civility, I say, "Officer, I go to school at Texas Tech in Lubbock. This is the first time I've been home this semester. I haven't burglarlized anybody."
"You have any proof of that?"
So I fish out my student ID and show it to him. He turns it over and notices a tiny line of fine print that says, Possession of this Identification Card does not guarantee enrollment. "What does that mean?" he asks me.
I sigh. "You can call the university, if you want. They'll confirm I'm enrolled there."
He shrugs. "You boys ever been arrested?"
"No sir," I tell him.
"Once for shoplifting," Sean says, and the cop's eyes glimmer with new hope.
He points to the sack of laundry. "What's in the bag? You boys been shopping?"
"It's my laundry, officer."
"Can I see it?"
I pull the shirt off the top, which just happens to be a Red Raiders t-shirt. "See, Texas Tech University. It's my shirt. I go to college there."
The policeman suddenly jams his head through the open window and sniffs the air inside the cab of the truck. "You boys smoke?"
"Have you been smoking marijuana?"
I sigh again, no longer hiding my frustration. "No sir."
"Can I see inside your ashtray?"
I open it up, and its filled with cigarette butts. I take one out and hold it up so he can see the brand name stamped on the filter. "Raleigh Light 100s, officer," I say, perhaps a tad snarkily. "My dad smokes them. This is his truck. He's letting me use it because my car is in Lubbock, where I go to school. This is my first trip home since classes started two months ago."
The policeman glares at us for a few seconds, then finally says, "Well, I'm still not convinced. And if we have any more burglaries, I'm going to turn you boys in as suspects and we'll have to bring you in."
"I'll probably be in Lubbock when that happens, officer. Would you like my address there?"
"No," he says as ominously as he can. "We'll find you." And with that, the Chubby Blue Line climbs back into his patrol car and speeds away.
"By the flaming nipples of our Lord and Savior!" I'll exclaim through chattering teeth, my body spasming in a desperate attempt to break a sweat. "It's colder than a metal rod up a snowman's ass!"
"Yes, Chris," my patient friends will usually respond, their mouths full of Schlitz Malt Liquor and Red Hots. "Every year, it gets cold. We call it 'winter.' Remember, it got cold last year? And the year before that? And..."
"Not this cold!" I'll insist, stubbornly. "I think the Earth has spun off its axis or something!"
Why the hell do men have nipples, anyway?
When I was much younger, I had a crush on Wilma Flintstone. What can I say? Red-headed, barefoot chicks in pearls and mini-skirts really mash my buttons. Especially when they're washing dishes by spraying them with water from an elephant's nose. I'm not sure what you'd call this particular fetish. Maybe I'm a Neanderphile...
Anyway, just out of habit, any time I see Wilma on TV, I have to watch for a few minutes, just in case it's that lost Flintstones episode where she and Betty finally kiss. I've never actually seen that episode, but if there is a just and loving god, then I know it must exist.
Sadly, this wasn't it. Instead, it was the Christmas show where Santa got sick and Fred had to take his place, or something like that. To tell you the truth, I sort of quit paying attention once it became obvious that there would be no hot Wilma/Betty action.
But I'm bringing it up because there is something I've always wondered about, ever since I first saw this episode decades ago.
Why the fuck are the Flintstones celebrating Christmas? Don't they live like 10,000 BC?
Sunday, November 21, 2004
My dad was a country-western musician and sort of swung in those Pickin' and Grinnin' social circles. He was buddies with Chet Atkins, and was acquainted with many of the beloved Hee Haw characters, such as Grandpa Jones, Minnie Pearl, Goatfuckin' Ned, Six-Toed Bessie, Cletus Q. Cousinhumper, Hillbilly Jesus, and Roy Clark. Personally, I wasn't much of a Hee Haw fan, but I did frequently ask Dad if he could introduce me to those hot girls in the straw hats and cutoffs. Unfortunately, that never seemed to pan out.
But I digress...
It's the summer of 1990, and I'm visiting my Dad in Texarkana. It's about 9:15 at night, and we're sitting in my grandmother's living room, watching Hee Haw. Or rather, he's watching Hee Haw. I'm reading Foucault's Pendulum and doing my best to ignore the hoedown.
Dad's drinking Pabst Blue Ribbon, because he likes his whiskey expensive but his beer dirt cheap. He's been putting them away since before dinner, so he's pretty buzzed when Buck Owens pops up from the corn field to announce the next performer. It's nobody I've ever heard of before, but my dad gets really excited.
"Chrisco!" he calls to me in a slurred voice.
"I want you to put that goddamn book down for a minute and listen to this next song, 'cause it's got some lyrics that will just... oooh.... tear you up!"
So being the dutiful son that I am, I put down the book and I listen. It's a typical twangy sad country song about a man who marries a woman, and the two of them have a daughter named Candy. Then the man and woman get divorced, and the woman eventually winds up engaged to another man, which means Candy is going to have a new father. And as the song reaches its emotional pinnacle, the singer pleads, "Please, don't give Candy to strangers..."
I'm about to make a sarcastic remark, but I bite it back when my father lets out an emotional sigh. "Oooh!" he exclaims, shaking his head. "Oh, man!" And then, he holds up his forearm and points to it, showing me all of the hairs standing on end.
Suddenly, I feel guilty for not being moved by the song, so I shake my head and say in a voice choked with emotion, "Wow, that's powerful."
Dad nods enthusiastically. "I know! I mean, oooh!" And he proudly displays the raised hairs on his arm again.
It's a bonding moment, and Christ knows we've had precious few of those. So I close my book, and spend the rest of the evening watching back-to-back Hee Haw episodes with him. And even though he falls asleep in his recliner before it's over, I watch all the way to the end.
I figure it's the least I can do. Right?
Saturday, November 20, 2004
On November 4th, the British tabloid Daily Mirror asked the very poignant question, "How can 59,054,087 people be so dumb?" It's a good question. Where do stupid people come from, and why are there so many of them around?
You see, back in the 1800s, when this country was young and Barbara Streisand was only in her mid-40s, times were tough for idiots. It was utterly Darwinian! The strongest and smartest managed to survive and procreate, while the morons were killed in blizzards, trampled by herds of carnivorous buffalo, or murdered and eaten by packs of wild, blood-thirsty Indians.
I'm sorry. I mean Native Americans.
Even up through the 1970s, survival required at least the occasional blip on the EEG. But then, in the 1980s, the tide somehow turned. Suddenly, stupid people became a protected species. We began inundating them with warning labels and commerical disclaimers to keep them from driving their cars through walls or heating up some Pop Tarts while they were in the bathtub.
And now, we live in a Moronic Golden Age where parents sue their TVs for telling their children to set themselves on fire. Rather than weed out the idiots, we've created an environment conducive to their survival. And unfortunately, that moron gene appears to be quite dominant, especially in the red states.
So the idiots have spoken and chosen one of their own to lead them. But I hate to come off as pessimistic. Rather than see America as slightly more than half-full of dumbasses, I prefer to see it as nearly half-full of people who aren't gun-totin', NASCAR-watchin', cousin-humpin' retards.
But you know us liberals. We're naïve to a fault!
TOP 10 WAYS TO TELL SOMEONE THEIR ZIPPER IS UNZIPPED:
By David Letterman ...
10. The cucumber has left the salad.
9. Quasimodo needs to go back in the tower and tend to his bells.
8. You need to bring your tray table to the upright and locked position.
7. Paging Mr. Johnson...Paging Mr. Johnson.
6. Elvis has left the building.
5. The Buick is not all the way in the garage
4. Our next guest is someone who needs no introduction.
3. You've got a security breach at Los Pantalones.
2. Men may be From Mars .. but I can see something that rhymes with
And the #1 Way to tell someone their zipper is unzipped .....
1. You've got your fly set for "Monica" instead of "Hillary"
Okay, but the cool part is that this ISN'T a David Letterman Top 10 List. This is a reworked version of a list from the TopFive.com site, for which I used to be a frequent contributor. And not only did I contribute to this particular list, but the #1 entry on the reworked list ("You've got your fly set for 'Monica' instead of 'Hillary'") was MINE!!!
Check out the original list here. (And scroll down and peep my name in the credits if you think I'm frontin', dawg!)
Just wanted to share. Thanks for listening.
Tuesday, November 09, 2004
Monday, November 08, 2004
Every once in a while, I like to Google myself, despite the warnings that I'll go blind.
By far, the majority of hits on my name are sports related. I'm not a jock, you understand. It just turns out that there's some guy (or maybe several guys) named Chris Irby playing football out there. God bless them for taking up the slack.
As far as legitimate links to my name, the majority of those either stem from my online comic, or from my contributions to the Top Five list.
And then, there are some odd ones floating around out there...
- This guy obviously thought enough of something I said to include me in a list of funny quotes. I have no idea who he is, but I do enjoy basking in the appreciation of anonymous people.
- Here I am, waxing nerdy on my favorite comic book, Hellblazer.
- I have no idea what this one is, but I'm pretty sure he's not talking about me.
- And finally, here's me trolling on the X-Files newsgroup back in 1999. Actually, most everybody else thought it was pretty funny but for some reason, a girl named Jen (is not a potato) got really mad at me. Anyway, it's good to know that this stuff will still be a matter of public record long after I'm dead.
Sunday, November 07, 2004
My friends are all going through that horrible Duran Duran stage, which means they're dressed in white cotton Banana Republic clothes and Panama hats. Oh, and lots of mascara. I'm the only one in the group who is tragically unhip, in my jeans and button-up shirt. With my hair parted to the side, I'm just a bow tie and a lobotomy away from being Tucker Carlson.
These are the guys I grew up with. We used to dress up in ridiculous costumes and film movies with my friend Sean's Super-8 camera. We'd spend entire weekends playing Dungeons and Dragons (until my dangerously Baptist mom and stepdad found out it was evil and put a stop to that). We'd plan all day excursions to the mall, making sure to hit the arcade and Lone Star Comics on our way to the theater. We were all content in our nerdiness.
But then, somewhere along the way, all of my friends got cool. It wasn't a gradual thing. It was like I missed a meeting, and suddenly they were all putting mousse in their hair and dressing like Simon LeBon. And they still wanted to hang out at the mall, only now they were more interested in shopping for clothes and flirting with girls.
So we're all at the Outlet Mall one Saturday afternoon. I didn't really want to come, but my friends have declared an intervention and are bound and determined to have me dressed in something paisley by the end of the day.
It's early April, and the mall is having a clearance sale on its leather jackets. So the five of us make our way to the back wall to browse. And as we're pawing our way through racks of leather merchandise, we hear an odd sound from the next aisle over.
It sounds like a cow mooing.
We stop talking and just listen. And sure enough, there it is again. Somebody's making cow noises in the leather department. How clever!
We hear it again, and we all start laughing. I make a comment, rather loudly, about how they must be making some more leather jackets up fresh. Another moo, and my friend Cary starts mooing back. Pretty soon, all of us are joining in.
All five of us are mooing rather raucously when we walk past the aisle and see the source of the sound. It's this profoundly retarded boy, about ten years old, in a wheelchair. He isn't mooing. He's simply moaning.
His parents are standing there, red-faced and angry, glaring at us as we walk past. They've been listening to us for the past five minutes, assuming we were making fun of their child. And honestly, there's not a thing any of us can say to make the situation better.
So we simply slink out without a word.
Wednesday, November 03, 2004
Okay. That said, I have to admit this was the most fascinating election I've ever experienced. After the homogenous campaigns of 2000, it was refreshing to actually see a difference between the two sides.
(No, I'm not counting Nader. The man received no electoral votes. That's the same number as I got, and I didn't even run.)
Perhaps most interesting were the numerous and diverse reasons that people gave for supporting their candidates. The following poll will give you an idea of why people voted as they did. As always, this is entirely real. I swear. Why would I make up something like this? It would just be a colossal waste of everybody's time.
Voter Poll - Election 2004
I voted for John Kerry because:
- He's not Bush (29%)
- Anyone's better than Bush (22%)
- Bush sucks (9%)
- I hate Bush (28%)
- I didn't want Bush to win (11%)
- After studying the two candidates and carefully weighing their stands on the issues, I realized that Kerry was the better choice (1%)
- He really, really hates faggots (13%)
- Kerry somehow convinced hundreds of soldiers to participate in an elaborate hoax to con the American government out of a Purple Heart (3%)
- Kerry has aligned himself with anti-God, anti-Christian organizations in order to undermine the morality of America (4%)
- He's a good Christian man. And he hates faggots (6%)
- He lives on a farm (5%)
- His daughters are really hot (8%)
- Bush, Schmush. I was carried away on a wave of Cheney-risma! (1%)
- The Grand Imperial Wizard said it was the only way I'd ever see my kids alive again (4%)
- Jesus told me to (14%)
- It's easier than thinking (12%)
- When the rest of the world was distracted by Osama Bin Laden, Bush was determined to focus on the true enemy... Saddam Hussein (17%)
- He believes that life is sacred, at least until it leaves the womb. Once that little bastard is born, he has to take his chances along with the rest of us (9%)
- After studying the two candidates and carefully weighing their stands on the issues, I realized that Bush was the better choice. Plus, he really hates faggots (4%)
Tuesday, November 02, 2004
There was a couple of women standing in line behind me, describing their complete and utter disgust with Kerry. Not because he was pro-choice, or because of his position on health care or even his anti-war stance. Because those would have been actual issues, which would have gotten them thrown out of the Republican party.
No, these women were disgusted with Kerry because he wants to ban the Bible. One of the women read it in an e-mail that she received from her friend in South Carolina. And when I heard that, you can imagine just how surprised and shocked I was. Holy shit, I said to myself. She can read?
I swear, I get so embarrassed for my state sometimes. I love Texas, and I love Dallas. But I hate the way so many people here embrace ignorance as if it were some kind of virtue. It continues to amaze me how people can be so politically charged, and yet be so utterly uninformed.
When Darrell Waltrip (former NASCAR driver and media gadfly) went stumping recently, he admitted that he wasn't a big issue guy, but he was an avid supporter of Bush. When pressed for a reason, he said, "John Kerry's got a mansion in Nantucket. George Bush has a farm in Crawford, Texas. That's the difference."
I honestly didn't think it was possible to make NASCAR look any dumber.
Bush has made a political career out of pandering to the retards. They love him because he's not too bright himself, and he doesn't use a lot of big, complicated words. Plus, he's a Christian and he really hates gay people, which always seems to play well in the sticks.
Kerry, on the other hand, bores them by talking about the facts. Facts are particularly troubling to Bush's camp, because they seem to have a decidedly anti-Bush bias. It's almost as if the facts are secretly allied with the Jew-run liberal media and the French Freemasons in their nefarious scheme to undermine Bush! And we all know that political beliefs are fragile and tenuous things that can be easily shattered, which is why it's important that Bush-supporters only listen to those facts that have been "Hannitized" for their protection.
This explains why Bush's rabid fans don't just disagree with Kerry. They despise him as a person. They think he's the embodiment of evil, a vast and powerful evil that can only be combated by the righteous and holy might of George W. Bush, messiah. For these mouth-breathers, this election isn't just an exercise in democracy. It's an apocalyptic battleground where the forces of good and evil are engaged in a final war over our immortal souls.
Christ, just thinking about it makes me tired. People that retarded shouldn't get to vote, or even operate motor vehicles.
But one way or another, it'll all be over soon. America will decide which candidate they want to lead them for the next four years. And then the Supreme Court will disregard that decision and just appoint their guy. Ah, the beauty of democracy in action.
No wonder we had to kill so many Iraqis to get them on board with the idea.
Thursday, October 21, 2004
When I was growing up, I was taught that God was a kind and loving deity (so long as you weren't gay and didn't listen to rock music). However, having actually read the Bible, I've come to realize that there wasn't a lot that was warm and fuzzy about good ol' Yahweh. In fact, He was quite cruel and vindictive, opening a can of divine whup-ass over the least little transgression.
So how well do YOU know the mind of God? Try to answer the next ten questions. And then I suggest you get your ass to church. I know where I'LL be next Sunday...
What punishment did God say is mandatory for an unruly child?
Answer: Stoning to death.
And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard. And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die. (Deuteronomy 21:20-21)
For Moses said, Honour thy father and thy mother; and, Whosoever curseth father or mother, let him die the death. (Mark 7:10)
And he that smiteth his father, or his mother, shall be surely put to death. (Exodus 21:15)
And he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death. (Exodus 21:17)
What are God's three punishments for women who wear showy jewelry and clothing?
Answer: Ugliness, misery and death.
In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of their tinkling ornaments about their feet, and their cauls, and their round tires like the moon. The chains, and the bracelets, and the mufflers, The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the earrings, The rings, and nose jewels. The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping pins, The glasses, and the fine linen, and the hoods, and the veils. And it shall come to pass, that instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a girdle a rent; and instead of well set hair baldness; and instead of a stomacher a girding of sackcloth; and burning instead of beauty. Thy men shall fall by the sword, and thy might in the war. And her gates shall lament and mourn: and she being desolate shall sit upon the ground. (Isaiah 3:17-26)
What is God's punishment of those who overeat?
Answer: Death by plague.
And the people stood up all that day, and all that night, and all the next day, and they gathered the quails: he that gathered least gathered ten homers: and they spread them all abroad for themselves round about the camp. And while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath of the Lord was kindled against the people, and the Lord smote the people with a very great plague. (Numbers 11:32-33)
The wrath of God came upon them, and slew the fattest of them, and smote down the chosen men of Israel. (Psalms 78:31)
What did Jesus say happens to those who have premarital sex?
Answer: They cannot enter Heaven.
Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-10)
What is the punishment for a single mother having a child out of wedlock?
Answer: The woman may not be punished but the child and his descendants will go straight to Hell.
A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord: even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the Lord. (Deuteronomy 23:2)
What punishment did God visit on children for making fun of bald people?
Answer: He sent bears to maul the children to death.
And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head. And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of the Lord. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them. (2 Kings 2:23-24)
What punishment did God promise for promiscuous women?
Answer: His followers will cut off their noses and ears, burn them in fire, take away their children and strip them naked.
And I will set my jealousy against thee, and they shall deal furiously with thee: they shall take away thy nose and thine ears; and thy remnant shall fall by the sword: they shall take thy sons and thy daughters; and thy residue shall be devoured by the fire. They shall also strip thee out of thy clothes, and take away thy fair jewels. Thus will I make thy lewdness to cease from thee, and thy whoredom brought from the land of Egypt: so that thou shalt not lift up thine eyes unto them, nor remember Egypt any more. (Ezekiel 23:25-27)
And the daughter of any priest, if she profane herself by playing the whore, she profaneth her father: she shall be burnt with fire. (Leviticus 21:9)
What does God demand happen to those couples who have sex during the woman's time of the month?
Answer: They are to be banished from society and not permitted to interact with civilized people.
And if a man shall lie with a woman having her sickness, and shall uncover her nakedness; he hath discovered her fountain, and she hath uncovered the fountain of her blood: and both of them shall be cut off from among their people.
What punishment does God mandate for a man who rapes a virgin?
Answer: The rapist and his victim shall be married.
If a man finds a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; Then the man that lay with her
shall give unto the damsel's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days.
What did God do to those who failed to sell all their possessions and give every dime to Him?
Answer: Struck them dead.
But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles' feet. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of
the price of the land? . . . And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave
up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things. . . .
Then fell [Sapphira] straightway at [Peter's] feet, and yielded up the ghost:
and the young men came in, and found her dead, and, carrying her forth, buried
her by her husband. (Acts 5:1-10)
Saturday, October 16, 2004
-Hermann Goering, at the Nuremberg trials
How many Republicans does it take to change a light bulb?
The answer is TEN:
- One to deny that a light bulb needs to be changed.
- One to attack the patriotism of anyone who says the light bulb needs changing.
- One to blame Clinton for burning out the light bulb.
- One to tell the nations of the world that they are either for changing the light bulb, or for Darkness.
- One to give a billion dollar no-bid contract to Halliburton for the new light bulb.
- One to arrange a photograph of Bush, dressed as a janitor, standing on a step ladder under a banner reading "Mission Accomplished!"
- One administration insider to resign and write a book documenting in detail how Bush is literally "in the dark."
- One to viciously smear #7.
- One surrogate to campaign on TV and at rallies how George Bush has had a strong light-bulb-changing policy all along.
- And finally, one to confuse Americans about the difference between screwing a light bulb and screwing the country.
My mom was keeping Christopher one weekend in December, but she wanted to scoot off for a couple of hours of Keno with the ladies, so she asked me to come over and keep an eye on him. I showed up, and Christopher came bounding to the door with his hands behind his back.
"Bubba!" he exclaimed. "Guess what figures I got!"
(At this point, I should probably point out that he calls me Bubba. He does this because he heard my sister do it, and it was easier to say than "Uncle Chris." I don't mind it from either of them, but I'm glad it hasn't really caught on as a nickname. It's just too bait-shop for my tastes.)
Anyway, "Bubba! Guess what figures I got!"
I shrugged. "Um, Monsters Incorporated?"
"No, silly! Not Monsters Incorporated!" He held out his hands, in which he was clutching several plastic Nativity scene dolls. "I got Jesus figures!"
My mom chuckled and explained that he had been wanting to play with her porcelain Nativity set, so she had taken him to the dollar store and bought him a plastic set of his own. Unfortunately, the Nativity set lacked any decent villains, so he had done away with the Three Wise Men and redubbed them Judas, Herod, and Pontious Pilate.
Once mom was gone, Christopher turned to me and asked, "Bubba? Do you wanna play Jesus with me?"
So I got down in the floor and we set up the figures. Christopher then explained to me the story of what was going on.
You see, Mary and Joseph found the baby Jesus and took him back to their house where he'd be safe. But then Herod was trying to kill Jesus, so Mary and Joseph called the shepherds to babysit, and then they set out for Herod's palace.
Once there, Joseph confronted King Herod. And attacked him with a lightsaber.
Christopher reenacted the duel as he knocked the two figures against each other in mortal combat. "I'm going to kill you, Herod!" *bzzzzzt* *bzzzzzt* "No! No! Don't kill me!" *bzzzzzt* "Die, Herod!" And at this point, Joseph struck Herod with his lightsaber. And with one final *bzzzzzt*, Herod was knocked off of a cliff. And then a lion ate him.
I've got to hand it to that kid. This may very well be The Greatest Story Ever Told...
Friday, October 15, 2004
Thursday, October 14, 2004
Last night's debate focused on domestic issues, which meant Bush had to find something else to steer his answers towards besides the war on terror. For some reason, he picked education. So almost every response went like this:
Mr. President, what would you say to someone in this country that
has lost his job to someone overseas?
Well, I've got the policies to create jobs and grow the economy and help
people go to community college, because education is the answer. Pell
Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education. Um, anybody want some
wood? Heh heh heh.
Mr. President, will we ever feel safe and secure again as a nation?
Well, we certainly learned a lot from 9/11. You know, like people
learn in community college, because education is the answer. Pell
Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education. Um, anybody want some
wood? Heh heh heh.
Mr. President. Do you believe in a higher power?
When I make decisions, I stand on principle... priciples... hey, high
school principals! Because education is the answer. Pell
Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education.
You still have 90 seconds, Mr. President.
Oh. Um, anybody want some wood? Heh heh heh.
As for Kerry, I have to say I was disappointed by his tepid performance. I know this is the third debate, and we're not going to hear a lot of new stuff, but Bush left himself wide open so many times, and Kerry just lobbed creampuffs at him.
But there were a few high points:
- Kerry reminds everybody about Bush's comments regarding bin Laden, "I really don't think about him that much. I'm not concerned." Bush claims he never said it, and calls the statement "kind of one of those exaggerations." Well, funny story. He did say it, during a 2002 news conference. But of course, while the Republicans have no problem remembering how Kerry voted on a minor issue in 1993, they have utter amnesia when it comes to Bush.
- Bush is asked about the flu vaccine shortage, and blames the contaminated supplies from Great Britain. He says we're counting on Canada to help us make up the difference. Oops!
- Kerry busts the president on Boeing. "He discovered Boeing during the course of this campaign after I'd been talking about it for months."
- Kerry's zinger: "Being lectured by the president on fiscal responsibility is a little bit like Tony Soprano talking to me about law and order in this country." The crowd laughs.
- Bush's zinger: "In all due respect, I'm not so sure it's credible to quote leading news organizations about..." The sound of crickets can be heard. "Oh, never mind."
- Bush actually brags that the borders of Texas are more secure now than they were when he was governor. Um... what?
- Kerry announces that he is a gun owner, a hunter, and a former law-enforcement officer. What a bad ass! Kind of puts Bush's fake cowboy machismo to shame, doesn't it?
- Kerry fumbles the ball by claiming Bush never met with the NAACP, the Black Congressional Caucus, or civil rights leaders. The Democrats hold their breath. Could Bush scoop it up and run it back for a touchdown? Bush claims, rather peevishly, that he DID meet with the Black Congressional Caucus, and then he starts talking about education again. Pell Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education. Um, anybody want some wood? Heh heh heh.
- Bush's zinger redux: When asked what he has learned from his wife and daughters, Bush responds "To listen to them. To stand up straight and not scowl." Everyone laughs, myself included.
- Kerry's zinger redux: On the same question, Kerry comments that he, Bush and the moderator (Bob Schieffer) are "three examples of lucky people who married up." Everyone laughs except for Bush. I guess he didn't get it. "And some would say maybe me moreso than others." More laughter. "But I can take it." Even more laughter.
So who won? Well, frankly I was quite impressed with Bush's performance last night. His arguments were well reasoned, and his logic was impeccable. For the first time ever, I understand the conservative point of view, and I actually find myself leaning in that direction. Who knows? I may even wind up voting for Bush in November!
Just kidding, dumbass. It was Kerry, all the way! Final score: Kerry 3, Bush 0.
If you disagree, please feel free to write me a long, rambling e-mail explaining just how much you think I suck. And for God's sake, don't waste any time on capitalization, punctuation, or spelling out long words like "you" when a single letter will work. For more helpful hints on effective correspondence, contact your local community college. Pell Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education.
Um, anybody want some wood? Heh heh heh.
Tuesday, October 12, 2004
Question #17: Senator Kerry is asked to assure Pro-Life voters that their tax dollars would not support abortion. Kerry starts off by mentioning his Catholic upbringing and how much he respects the belief about life and when it begins. However, he feels it is wrong for him to legislate an article of his faith. He then wanders off into a discussion about family planning, and how it will prevent AIDS, unwanted children and unwanted pregnancies. Sort of all over the board there, Kerry.
And of course, Bush can't let it pass. He takes a shot at Kerry for his long-winded answer, then starts listing all of the Pro-Life legislation that he has signed and supported, including the ban on partial-birth abortions. He says Kerry was opposed to the ban. He also mentions parental notification laws, which Kerry voted against.
Kerry scolds Bush for once again oversimplifying, and explains that he was opposed to the partial-abortion ban because there was no exception with regards to the life or health of the mother. Kerry says he voted against parental notification laws because he doesn't want to require a girl who was raped and made pregnant by her father to have to notify her father.
Bush pretty much ignores what Kerry said and just restates that Kerry was against the ban on parital-birth abortions. And once again, he tells Kerry he can run, but he can't hide. I don't know why he keeps saying this. Maybe he's picking up an old John Wayne movie on his hidden earpiece.
Question #18: President Bush is asked to give three instances when he made a wrong decision, and explain what he did to correct it. And Bush totally evades the question by claiming he makes decisions that are unpopular, but not necessarily wrong. He then goes into his usual diatribe defending his decision to go into Iraq and his tax cut. He does admit he made some mistakes in appointing people, but he doesn't want to hurt their feelings by naming them.
Kerry goes for the throat and starts ticking off the president's mistakes with regard to Iraq. We didn't build a global coaltion. We didn't give the inspectors time to finish their job. We didn't go through the UN process. We didn't use war as a last resort. We rushed into war without a plan to win the peace. We didn't guard 850,000 tons of ammo, which is now being used against us. We didn't give our soldiers the armor they required.
Bush lashes out at Kerry for voting against the $87 billion supplemental he sent to congress, claiming that's why the soldiers are so inadequately equipped. He insists that Saddam Hussein was a risk to our country.
And Kerry once again explains that he voted against Bush's proposal because it was financially irresponsible. He wanted Bush to pay for the supplemental by repealing his tax cut, so the burden wouldn't be passed on to the next generation. Plus, he didn't want to create a slush fund for Halliburton. Not that anything he says matters. Apparently the Republicans quit listening when Bush stops talking.
Closing Statements: Kerry outlines his plans to basically fix everything Bush fucked up so that America will be safer and stronger.
Bush brags about farm income and house ownership during his term, reminds everybody that we're at war and somehow his three days of active service in the National Guard make him uniquely qualified to lead us. He mentions 9/11 and weapons of mass destruction a few times, then a whole bunch of stuff about freedom and liberty. Then he closes by asking if anybody wants any wood. (Not really.)
If you've read this far, you may have noticed a slight bias in my writing. What can I say? I'm a Kerry supporter. So by the power vested in me by the Vic Tayback Fan Club (Local #1832) and the Universal Life Church in Modesto, California, I do hereby proclaim John Kerry the winner of the second debate! And there's nothing you can do about it, you whiny little bitch, so just buck up and wipe your nose! Muahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!
For those scoring at home, it's currently Kerry 2, Bush 0. If you disagree, please feel free to contact me on the Internets and let me know.
I'm not sure what happens to Bush at this point. He refers to Kerry as "Senator Kennedy" and starts blathering on about how the National Journal named him the most liberal senator of all. He disputes Kerry's claim of 1%, and accuses Kerry of trying to create government-sponsored health care because "that's what liberals do."
Kerry accuses Bush of trying to use the "liberal" label to frighten voters, and then tears into Bush's supposed "compassionate conservativism." Claims labels don't matter. What matters is whether or not you have a plan.
Bush responds by attacking Kerry's attendance record in the Senate over the previous year. You know, while he was campaigning.
Question #10: President Bush is asked to explain why his spending plans are superior to Kerry's. Bush starts off on the defensive by claiming that he inherited a recession from Clinton, which caused the deficit. And he is worried about the deficit, but he's going to keep spending whatever it takes to win the war in Iraq. And he's not going to run up taxes, because that will cost this economy jobs.
Kerry detours to debunk the president's assertion that his plan for medical care is, in effect, a government takeover. He then attacks Bush's claims that he inherited a recession, reminding everybody that Bush managed to turn a $5.6 trillion surplus into a $2.6 trillion deficit. He also mentions that Bush is the first president in 72 years to lose jobs, and the first EVER to cut taxes while at war. On a roll, Kerry invokes the names of Roosevelt and Truman as good wartime presidents.
Gibson asks both candidates to elaborate on just how they plan to cut the deficit in half over the next four years. Bush starts to answer the question by saying something about keeping Congress from overspending, but then wanders off and starts trying to defend his tax cut again.
Kerry doesn't answer the question either, but once again attacks Bush's tax cut. Reminds everybody that Bush promised his second tax cut would create 5.6 million jobs, but it actually lost 1.6 million. He refers to Bush's plan as "a $25 billion giveaway to the biggest corporations in America, including a $254 million refund check to Enron."
Question #11: Senator Kerry is asked to look directly into the camera and swear that he will not raise taxes on families making less than $200,000 during his first term. Kerry does this, and uses the time left to elaborate on his plans to issue child-care credits, tuition tax credits, and provide affordable health care.
Bush accuses Kerry of voting to break the spending caps over 200 times, and yet now claiming to be a fiscal conservative. And he insists that Kerry will raise taxes, no matter what he claims. Which is an understandable point of view, considering what happened to Bush's dad ("Read my lips!"). Bush eats up a few seconds off of the clock by asking if his time is up yet, then repeats his plan to keep taxes low, to have an energy plan, and to reform litigation.
Gibson apparently realizes that neither candidate answered his previous question about cutting the deficit in half, so he once again poses it to them. Kerry starts off accusing the president of using "fuzzy math" instead of actual figures. He then describes a joint proposal he has with John McCain to close the corporate giveaway loopholes. He closes by reminding everybody that in 1985, he was one of the first Democrats to move to balance the budget, and that he voted for the balanced budget in '93 and '97.
Bush evades the question and simply attacks Kerry. He cites spurious figures about how Kerry voted 98 times to raise taxes (and then, ironically, claims that the numbers aren't made up). He then starts blathering about liberals again.
Question #12: President Bush is asked how he rates himself as an environmentalist. Bush cites his questionable environmental policies, including his plan to destroy large portions of forest to prevent fires. He refers to it as "good, common-sense policy." He then, somehow with a straight face, refers to himself as a good steward of the land. Somewhere, a Native American is crying.
Kerry comes out swinging, claiming the president isn't living in a world of reality. Once again, he chides the president for resorting to labels, and then he digs into Bush's attrocious environmental record. He refers to the Clear Skies bill as Orwellian, and claims it was a step backwards from the pre-existing Clean Air Act. He condemns the president's backwards views on air quality, water quality, and global warming.
Bush claims he pulled out of the Kyoto treaty because it would have cost America a lot of jobs, and he continues to insist, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, that the quality of the air is cleaner since he's been president of the United States.
Kerry admits that the Kyoto treaty was flawed, but is appalled that the president simply declared it a dead issue rather than try to fix it. He simply abandoned the work of 160 nations over 10 years. And people wonder why America is unpopular in some parts of the world...
Question #13: Senator Kerry is asked how the U.S. can be competitive in manufacturing and still pay comfortable wages to the American workers. Kerry reiterates his plan to shut the tax loopholes that encourage companies to relocate overseas, and instead give a tax benefit to companies that stay in America. He also restates his plan to lower the costs of health care, which then allows him to segue back into his rehearsed health care speech. Bad form, Kerry. But he eventually wanders back on track and talks about the "great entrepreneurial spirit of this country," and how we will eventually free ourselves from dependency on oil from the Middle East.
Bush goes even further off track by rambling about medical liability reform and his energy plan, which is stuck in the Senate. And Kerry and Edwards didn't show up to vote for it. And Kerry's plan to tax the rich won't work. And HOLY SHIT, MR. PRESIDENT! DID YOU EVEN HEAR THE QUESTION? Bush then makes the claim that Kerry's plan will tax 900,000 small businesses.
Gibson asks Kerry to elaborate on how tax credits will stop outsourcing, and Kerry claims that stopping all outsourcing would be pandering. What he intends to do is level the playing field. He cites an article in the Wall Street Journal that said 96% of small businesses would not be affected by his plan. He then claims that Bush's figure of 900,000 comes from a very loose definition of "small business." By those criteria, Bush is a small business because he got $84 from a timber company that he owns.
Bush cracks a few jokes about the fact that he doesn't own a timber company, but really doesn't say much else.
Question #14: President Bush is asked to justify weakening the rights of Americans with the Patriot Act. Bush claims the Patriot Act is a necessary tool for fighting terrorists, and it in no way erodes the rights of Americans.
Kerry claims the Patriot Act was misapplied, and that people's rights have been abridged as a result. He explains he voted for the Patriot Act along with 98 other senators, and that he still believes it contains vital elements necessary to coordinate the FBI and the CIA. But he disagrees with the way the current administration has abused the act with regards to civil liberties.
Question #15: Senator Kerry is asked about using stem cells obtained without destroying an embryo. Kerry starts off plucking the heart strings, mentioning Michael J. Fox and Christopher Reeve. He then mentions his plan to obtain embryonic stem-cell material from embryos frozen in nitrogen by fertility clinics. These embryos are either going to be destroyed or left frozen, so why not put them to a more noble of potentially curing Parkinson's, curing diabetes, or curing spinal cord injuries.
Bush responds by claiming embryonic stem-cell research requires the destruction of life to create a stem-cell, and he reminds everybody that he was the first president to ever allow federal funding for it (although everybody knows Rutherford B. Hayes was a huge proponent of it as well). But he wants to limit it, because destroying life to save life is "one of the real ethical dilemmas that we face."
Kerry accuses Bush of waffling. He calls Bush's numbers into question, and claims every scientist in the country will claim the lines of stem-cells currently available are "not adequate." Kerry promises that, if elected, he will open up the possibilities of stem-cell research, instead of limiting it.
Bush claims he made his decision to "destroy more life" in an effort to "balance science and ethics."
Question #16: President Bush is asked about his next choice for the Supreme Court. He says he wants somebody who will strictly interpret the Constitution of the United States. Then, as an odd example, he says he would never pick a judge who felt it was wrong to include the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance. So apparently, strictly interpreting the First Amendment isn't job one. He also takes a bold stand against slavery, and then makes it clear he's not quite sure WHAT the Constitution actually says.
Kerry reminds everybody that Bush once said he favored appointing conservative judges. He claims we don't need good conservative judges or good liberal judges. We just need good judges.
Is it just me, or didn't the EXACT SAME THING happen to Al Gore back in 2000?
Anyway, here's a blow-by-blow of the whole damn thing.
Question #1: Senator Kerry is asked if he is too wishy-washy. Kerry comes out swinging with a brilliant line about how the Republicans are trying to distract from their own failures by making up stories about his flip-flopping. He refers to Bush's campaign as a "weapon of mass deception."
Bush responds with the same tired Republican rhetoric about how Kerry changed his position on the war in Iraq. Anybody who gets their news from a source other than Rush or FOX knows this isn't true, but as always, the Republicans are counting on the laziness and stupidity of their supporters to sweep Bush into office.
Question #2: President Bush is asked if he was justified in invading Iraq. Bush yammers on and on about 9/11 and al Qaeda for a while before finally wandering back on topic. Finally gets around to saying that everybody thought Hussein posed a threat, so we were justified in invading. Once again, works in a reference to Kerry flip-flopping, because if he went five minutes without saying it, magic fairies would eat his children.
Kerry again defends his position, explaining that he never changed his mind, and the only reason the president keeps insisting otherwise is to distract the voters from his own abysmal failures on domestic issues. Once again, just in case any Republicans are actually listening to him, Kerry explains that he didn't vote to go to war. He voted to give the president that authority to make his bargaining position with Hussein that much stronger. But as soon as Bush got the authority, he rushed to war.
In his rebuttal, Bush claims that Kerry was naive to think UN sanctions would work to remove Hussien from power.
Kerry reminds Bush that the sanctions were not intended to remove Hussein from power, but to remove the WMDs. And they worked. And if Bush had just allowed the UN inspectors to do their job instead of rushing to war, we could have focused on bin Laden instead of letting ourselves be distracted by Iraq.
Question #3: Senator Kerry is asked if he would use the same plan in Iraq as Bush. Kerry responds with an emphatic no, and goes on to list some prominent Republicans who have described Bush's handling of Iraq as incompetent, pitiful, embarrassing, and dangerous. He criticizes the way Bush alienated potential allies and eschewed diplomacy. Insists his plan is to speed up the training of Iraqis, and to get our allies back to the table.
In a bold and slightly odd move, Bush takes credit for Kerry's plan and claims it's exactly what he has been doing. Once again claims that Kerry will never be able to enlist support for a war that he feels was a mistake. We get to hear "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time" again.
Kerry insists the right war was with Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan, and that Bush dropped the ball by turning his attention to Iraq.
Bush retorts that we didn't know there were no WMDs until we invaded Iraq and found out. Which for some reason he thinks justifies the invasion. He also insists that the war on terror isn't just about Osama bin Laden, but is about anybody who could provide nuclear weapons to terrorists. Which, ironically, appears to be everybody in the Middle East except for Iraq.
Question #4: President Bush is asked what he intends to do to repair diplomatic relations with other nations. Bush sort of sidesteps the question by talking about how, as president, he's forced to make decisions that make us unpopular with other nations. He invokes the name of Ronald Reagan, slams on the International Criminal Court, and then finally gets around to an answer by saying "we'll continue to reach out."
Kerry brings up the president's promise that he wouldn't take us to war without a viable exit strategy and enough forces to get the job done. He mentions General Shinseki, who told Bush they were going to need more troops, and claims the general was forced to retire as a result.
(Turns out this isn't entirely true. Shinseki did testify that they needed a lot more men to get the job done in Iraq, but he was already slated to retire. Kerry apparently got his facts from a story in the Washington Post, which was retracted immediately after this debate.)
Bush claims he looked each and every one of his generals in the eye and asked them if they had enough men to win the war, and each one of them told him, "Yes sir, Mr. President." I guess he wasn't listening when General Shinseki spoke...
Kerry reminds Bush that it's the army's job to win the war, but the president's job to win the peace. And Bush has failed miserably.
Question #5: Senator Kerry is asked what he'll do about Iran if the UN fails to take action. Kerry takes the opportunity to slam on Bush, mentioning that Iran (and North Korea) have become more dangerous in the past few years, while our nation was focused on Iraq. He mentions his plan to contain the loose nuclear material in the former Soviet Union, and denounces the president's plan to develop new and more devastating weapons.
Bush claims Kerry's answer almost made him want to scowl, which draws nervous laughter from the crowd. Once again, he claims that trusting inspectors to do their job is a mistake, because Saddam Hussein was deceiving the inspectors. Except he really didn't have any WMDs. Or something. I don't know. I'm getting a headache. Something about the Axis of Evil.
Question #6: President Bush is asked how he will maintain the strength of our military without instituting a draft. Bush responds by mentioning rumors he has read "on the Internets." Christ, Mr. President! There's a fine line between folksy and retarded, and I think you blew past it a long time ago. In fact, the light leaving that line won't reach you for several thousand years!
But I digress...
Bush claims that we're gradually replacing our troops with more effective weapons and with enhanced technology. We're also going to outsource our military, replacing 80% of our soldiers with contract workers from India. (Okay, I made that up.)
Kerry begins his retort by listing approximately 7,000 generals who support his presidential campaign. He compares Bush's military stop-loss policies to a backdoor draft, and complains that our soldiers are underpaid. He announces a vague plan to increase the rolls by making people feel good about being in the military. He sees Bush's former invocation of Reagan and raises him an Eisenhower. And finally, insists that building alliances will ease the burden on our military.
At this point, Bush loses his mind and starts shouting over moderator Charles Gibson. He ignores Gibson's question and shouts at Kerry, daring him to tell our current allies that we're going it alone in Iraq. Starts naming countries in the Coalition, including Poland (who recently announced their intention to withdraw).
Kerry tells Bush that nations are leaving the Coaltion, not joining. Mentions that if the state of Missouri were to join the Coalition, they'd be the third largest member (right after the U.S. and Great Britain). Zing.
Question #7: Senator Kerry is asked why he thinks we haven't been attacked since 9/11, and what he plans to do to ensure our safety. Kerry says he agrees with the president that we have to go after the terrorists, instead of sitting around and waiting for an attack. However, he feels intelligence and cooperation are vital and the current administration has come up short on both counts. He then mentions that Bush chose to give a tax cut to the wealthiest Americans, when that money could have been better used to make our nation more secure.
Bush defends himself, claiming he tripled the homeland security budget to $30 billion. He also attacks Kerry for voting to cut the intelligence budget back in 1993. Because we all know that if you change your mind about something over the course of 11 years, it makes you a flip-flopper. And then, flailing wildly, Bush brings up Iraq again and mentions "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time."
Kerry says he agrees with the president's assessment that another terrorist attack is inevitable. It's not just enough to add money; the president is supposed to do everything within his power to make America secure. But Bush instead chose a tax cut.
Bush claims we're fighting an enemy with an ideology of hate, and the only way to defeat them is to spread freedom, as we've done in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Question #8: President Bush is asked why he blocked the importation of drugs from Canada. Bush claims he didn't block them yet. He just wants to make sure that they're safe. He then launches into his rehearsed speech about Medicare reform.
Kerry accuses Bush of being disingenuous. Four years ago, Bush said he thought importing drugs from Canada was a good idea. But now he's blocking it, despite the fact that it has passed in the Senate. Kerry then goes on to pick apart Bush's claims of Medicare reform, and accuses him of siding with the big drug companies rather than the American people.
Bush insists he'll allow the Canadian drugs if they're safe. He claims Bill Clinton made the same decision. He then attacks Kerry, claiming he has never done a thing with regards to Medicare.
Kerry claims, "In 1997, we fixed Medicare, and I was one of the people involved in it." He then goes on to brag about how they balanced the budget, paid down the debt, and created 23 million new jobs. And now, all of that hard work has been undone by the current administration.
Wednesday, October 06, 2004
"Wow! This bus is a lot bigger than the one I used to ride to school!"
"God is on our side. I know it because He told me so. Of course, that might have just been the cocaine talking."
"I am opposed to same-sex marriage, not only because I think it underminds the moralitude of our nation, but because I really, really hate fags."
"Education was my highest priority when I was governor of Texas. No, wait. Not education. Executing retarded people! THAT was my highest priority!"
"By stripping the forests, we're actually preventing forest fires. You see, sometimes in order to save something, you have to kill a big part of it. Sort of like Iraq."
"I think a president should be able to express himself concisively and coherentical, so that… oops, I crapped my pants again."
"Me am rocket ship zoom ice cream FAAART!!!"
Actually, I will say this for Cheney. He came across as human and, well, almost likeable. And in the greater scheme of lowered Republican expectations, the mere fact that he made it through the debate without flatlining is being seen as a win by his supporters.
As for Edwards, he was poised and smiley and oh, so charismatic. For some reason, every time Edwards smiles, I get the feeling he's about to tell me about the difference that Christ has made in his life. I don't know why. Chalk it up to a Baptist upbringing, if you must.
(And is it just me, or does Edwards look a lot like John Ritter? Before he died, I mean. For some reason, I keep imagining a scenario where Edwards is discussing the Republican Whips, but Mr. Furley overhears him and thinks he's talking about sex. And then Suzanne Somers shows up in a tight sweater and starts jumping up and down and up and... and... and... COME AND KNOCK ON OUR DOOOOOOOR!)
During the debate itself, both guys played a little fast and loose with the facts. But people more meticulous and less lazy than me have already done the legwork on this one. For an excellent breakdown of truth vs. rhetoric, check out this article at FactCheck.org, a website that Cheney himself cited during the debate (well, sort of). Somehow, I doubt he'll be mentioning them again after this.
Typical exchanges went something like this. Edwards would claim that 90% of the losses among Coalition forces in Iraq had been American. Cheney would counter by telling him that he forgot about the Iraqis themselves, who accounted for nearly 50% of the losses. Edwards would reiterate that he said Coalition forces. Cheney would begin wailing with remorse over how little the Democratic party really cared about the Iraqis. And then moderator Gwen Ifill would interrupt them both to remind them that the question had been about tax cuts.
I can't imagine the debate changed anybody's mind. Most polls are showing that Edwards won by a narrow margin, but we all know that's just the Jewish-run liberal media skewing the numbers as a part of their vast anti-Christian, anti-Bush agenda. So I'm willing to split the difference and call it a tie.
If you feel differently, fuck off and get your own damn blog.
Friday, October 01, 2004
Okay, just kidding. Most Democrats are calling Kerry the victor. What's sort of ironic is that most Republicans, ever defiant, are calling last night's debate a tie. After all, Kerry did score high points for being poised, prepared, and concise (by Kerry standards). But Bush managed to make it through the evening without soiling himself, and his supporters strongly feel that should be worth a point or two.
Oh, and then you've got that tiny bunch of conservative zealots who still maintain that Bush trounced Kerry, which just goes to show you how powerful blind faith and denial can be. But you can't blame these people for supporting Bush. After all, they live in a world where America is safer, the economy is getting better, and homeless people are actually piñatas filled with tasty candy. Hell, if I lived there, I'd be all for Bush too!
You've just got to love how hard Bush's posse is working to spin last night's performance into some kind of victory. Karl Rove claims it was Bush's best debate ever, and Kerry's worst. He also claims that Bush's long, painful pauses were simply "pauses for effect." Well, if he was going for the effect of a deer caught in the headlights of an oncoming car, then MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!
So for those scoring at home, it's currently Kerry 1, Bush 0. With a +/-1 margin of error, I suppose.
Thursday, September 30, 2004
So my grandfather forwarded me yet another retarded e-mail. This one pretended like it was simply explaining where Kerry and Bush stood on the issues, but it quickly devolved into some kind of horrible Jack Chick rant about how Bush and the Republicans are bravely standing against the Satanic forces that are seeking to lay our nation low.
And no, they weren't talking about the terrorists.
Here is the e-mail, along with my pointless comments (in italics). Read on, and be swept away on a sea of fundamentalist bullshit!
2004 Election Voter Guide
Depending on the way you lean, the following information could have bearing on decisions you make November 2004.
Issues of Importance?
- President Bush is opposed
- John Kerry favors
John Kerry favors leaving it up to the states to decide. As does Dick Cheney. As did George W. Bush back when he was campaigning in 2000. However, he has since flip-flopped... I mean, changed his mind and decided to support a Constitutional amendment instead.
- President Bush is opposed
- John Kerry favors
Restoring voluntary prayer in the public schools
- President Bush Favors
- John Kerry is Opposed
Assault on Mel Gibson for making film about Christ
- President Bush supports Gibson
- John Kerry participated in Left's assault on Gibson, suggesting possible anti-Semitism even though Kerry had not seen the film.
To tell you the truth, I couldn't remember Kerry ever speaking out against the film, so I did a Google search on "kerry gibson passion christ." This search turned up hundreds of conservatives railing against Kerry for attacking the movie, but none of them could be bothered to cite any specifics.
After digging around, I did manage to turn up one comment from Kerry about The Passion of the Christ: "I am concerned [about anti-Semitism]. I don't know if it's [in the film] or not, but there's a lot of it around now. We have to be careful."
Wow. Way to push your liberal agenda there, Kerry!
Assault on boy Scouts for belief in God and not allowing Homosexual Scout Leaders
- President Bush supports Boy Scouts' stand
- John Kerry opposes boy Scouts' stand
Notice how the issue isn't whether or not the Boy Scouts should be allowed to ban homosexuals. No, the issue as stated is whether or not the president should support the Boy Scouts' stand against being assaulted for banning homosexuals.
The fact that anybody considers this an issue makes me incredibly sad.
Asking for God's blessing on America
- President Bush often asks God to bless America in his speeches
- John Kerry attacks Bush for mentioning God so often
Because, you know. If the other nations thought we were conducting our war for religious reasons, they might get the wrong idea about us. After all, don't we have a name for zealots who kill in the name of their god? We call them "terrorists."
Damn that First Amendment! Why won't it just go away?
- President bush says "We need common-sense judges who believe our rights are derived from God."
- John Kerry insists on judges who support the ACLU's radical anti-Christian, anti-God, anti-family agenda. John Kerry is insistent on blocking President Bush's federal judge appointments.
In the second place, I know there's a lot of bad blood between the conservatives and the ACLU, and I can understand why. Those pesky civil liberties are constantly getting in the way of the conservatives' attempts to, say, ban homosexuals from the Boy Scouts. But the ACLU aren't the bad guys, no matter how much the conservatives pretend otherwise.
And in the third place, "John Kerry is insistent on blocking President Bush's federal judge appointments." Really? Imagine the nerve of that bastard! Not only that, he chose a Democratic running mate! AND HE'S LIBERAL! HOLY SHIT! WHEN DID THIS BECOME A TWO PARTY SYSTEM?
- President Bush does not vote on issues before Congress but, based on his publicly stated positions, would receive an 85% conservative rating from the American Conservative Union if he did.
- John Kerry, according to the highly respected, politically-neutralNational Journal rates Kerry the most liberal U. S. Senator in 2003 --more liberal than Ted Kennedy and Hillary Clinton.
With help from you and many others, we aim to distribute 25,000,000 of these Voter Guides in churches and mailboxes to Christian voters across America.
Oh no! This could cost Kerry the coveted fundamentalist Christian vote in all of the red states! His dark satanic masters will be displeased!
If you agree, please pass this on
If you disagree, please delete this
Personally, I love this because it perfectly embodies the spirit of conservative political discourse. If you agree with us, tell everybody! If you don't, then just keep your goddamn mouth shut.
So the election in November will not be decided by people voting on the issues, but by a bunch of morons who view it as an apocalyptic battle between good and evil. People who are too lazy or too stupid to bother with the facts will cast their vote for Bush because they think he's some kind of messiah sent to deliver us from the evil Democrats.
Oh, what the hell. I guess it's easier than thinking.
Wednesday, September 29, 2004
I swear, I've heard this argument at least 17,000,000 times since Bush decided gay bashing should be a function of the federal government. Same-sex marriage is apparently the first step on a slipperly slope that will inevitably lead to some hot man-on-goat action. Which will of course lead to same-sex man-on-goat action. Oh, is there no end to the depravity?
Actually, this isn't the first pre-emptive strike against human/goat marriages. At one time, interfaith marriages were considered taboo because the Bible says, "Verily the intermingling of the faiths shall lead to copulation with the beasts of the field, and the man shall lay with the goat." I think it's in Deuteronomy somewhere.
Later, there was a lot of outcry against interracial marriages because of the old saying, "Once you've had black, you'll marry a yak." But the impassioned protests of the conservative groups (or "klaverns") went unheeded and another important roadblock in the path to wonton bestiality was removed.
So now, the ban on same-sex marriage is the only dam of decency that stands between us and a nightmarish, Orwellian future of endless goat orgies. If that barrier comes down, America will be lost in a flood of farm animal nuptials.
Or something like that. To tell you the truth, I sort of quit paying attention as soon as they said the word "goat."
If the homophobes can manage to scrape up a moderately intelligent person from their ranks, they might want to consider letting that person speak for them from now on. Seriously. The retards they've got pleading their case right now aren't doing them any good.
And if you're reading this and saying to yourself, "I don't know what most of them big words mean, but I do know I really hate them faggots," then all I can say is THANK YOU FOR VISITING MY BLOG, MR. PRESIDENT!
Some other titles I considered:
- Leper Fest!
- The Hot Wet Spanking Nurses Page
- Wiener Dogs Gone Wild!
- Chicken Soup for the Damned Soul
- Bonsai Babies
- Oops, I Crapped My Pants Again
- "The Power of Chris Compels You!"
- Aspartame and Old Lace
- Click... Click... Click... BANG!
- I Can't Believe It's Not Butter, You Goddamn Liar!
- Kierkegaard vs. Heidegger: Existential Smackdown!
Personally, I can't wait to see what kind of Google searches I turn up on now!
Friday, September 24, 2004
The ceiling of the Liberace Museum. You know, where I was mauled and stripped by a bunch of old people.
Thursday, September 23, 2004
The most recent one was a plea for all Christians to unite together and fight against Madalyn Murray O'Hair and her atheist organization, because they were petitioning the FCC to pass RM-2493, which would ban all religious broadcasting on TV and radio. The first casualty of this holy media war was Touched by an Angel, which CBS was forced to cancel because they said "God" on the air.
Holy crap! How can you possibly pack so much retardation into a single e-mail without it collapsing in on itself?
My grandfather and his friends seemed really upset that the minions of Satan were now resorting to more bureaucratic methods to enforce the nefarious will of their evil overlord. So I thought I would do the decent thing and set them straight.
I replied back and informed everybody of the following (in a much nicer way):
- Madalyn Murray O'Hair has been dead for several years and, thus, not terribly active in Washington D. C.
- RM-2493 had nothing to do with the banning of religious broadcasting. It was intended to prevent religious organizations from purchasing licenses to broadcast on channels reserved for educational programming.
- RM-2493 was proposed in 1974, and was turned down in 1975. (Let me say that again for any mentally challenged people or Touched by an Angel fans that might be reading. RM-2493 was denied by the FCC almost THIRTY GODDAMN YEARS AGO!!!)
- Touched by an Angel was cancelled due to low ratings, not because they said "God" on the air. CBS is currently airing the show Joan of Arcadia, which not only mentions "God," but features Him as a prominent character.
I really thought it would set everyone's mind at ease to find out that Madalyn Murray O'Hair's zombie wasn't concocting some mad plan to get Jesus kicked off the air waves. But nooooooooooooooooo!!! I received an angry response, accusing me of mocking an issue that many Christians take very seriously.
Imagine. We live in a nation that is predominantly Christian. We have a president who is not only open about his Christianity, he lets it inform his policies from gay marriage to our involvement in the Middle East. One of the top grossing films this year was a reverent portrayal of Christ's last days.
And yet, it seems a lot of Christians just aren't happy unless they can pretend like they're being persecuted. So I guess they're eager to cling to any story that fulfills that fantasy, even if it is complete and utter bullshit.
It's just more fun that way.
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
The truth is a complicated and messy proposition, something most people can't be bothered to understand. They'd rather live in a streamlined universe, where political parties embody good and evil and where candidates are either blameless and holy, or utterly wicked and depraved.
"Oh, I don't want to listen to a long, boring Kerry speech. I'll just wait and let Bush's campaign team summarize it for me. I'm sure they'll give me a fair and unbiased interpretation, because why would they lie?"
It's a dead giveaway when the people who utterly despise Kerry can't think of any specific examples to back up their irrational hatred. Instead, they just trot out the same tired old Republican spin about how Kerry wanted to go to war but changed his mind, or how he apparently involved hundreds of people in a massive conspiracy to defraud the U.S. into awarding him a Purple Heart.
Kerry's supporters aren't blameless in this, either. I swear, if I hear one more person tell me they're voting for Kerry because "anybody's better than Bush," I'm going to shit kittens.
Here's a great example of what I'm whining about.
Kerry and the rest of the Democrats voted to give George W. Bush the authority to declare war on Iraq. They did so to strengthen the president's bargaining position, and they claim they had no idea Bush was going to use his newfound power so irresponsibly. After all, Bush had promised to exhaust all other channels (including diplomacy) before going to war. He'd also promised that he would not move against Iraq without UN support. But once he got the go-ahead, both of those promises fell by the wayside.
Were they really naive enough to believe that Bush would try to avoid war? I doubt it. After all, I don't think any of the rest of us were fooled. For all of Bush's posturing about diplomacy and UN support, we KNEW war was inevitable.
The fact is, the Democrats voted to support Bush, knowing full well what he would do. They did so because, at the time, disagreeing with Bush was tantamount to admitting that you were a terrorist. And it's only now that it's publically acceptable to disagree with our actions in Iraq that they're speaking out and claiming that they were duped.
Democrats are good, but naive. Republicans are evil, manipulative monsters. That's certainly easier to grasp than the truth, right?
Meanwhile, the Republicans were working overtime to put their own spin on events. Kerry had been very outspoken about Bush's mishandling of the war in Iraq. In fact, like the rest of the Democrats, he still claimed that he was utterly taken in by Bush's promises to look for a peaceful solution.
So a few months ago, Bush asked Kerry if he would have still voted the same way if he'd known they weren't going to find any WMDs in Iraq. It was a lose/lose situation for Kerry. If he said no, the Republicans would have peed all over themselves in their zeal to accuse him of flip-flopping. And if he said yes, they'd be able to distort that into proof that Kerry had supported invading Iraq.
Kerry gave one of his typically long-winded and complicated answers. Yes, he would have voted to give the president the authority to declare war, because he felt the president should have a strong bargaining position when negotiating with Iraq. However, he made it clear that he still felt Bush had totally abused the power given him and had utterly botched things in Iraq.
No doubt he thought he could avoid the trap laid for him by simply telling the truth. But unfortunately, the truth was too complicated for everyone, so the Republicans set to work massaging the facts to suit their own needs. They portrayed Kerry and the rest of those speaking out against the war as weak and evil hypocrites working to undermine the president's noble efforts to defend our nation. Since most of Bush's supporters already believed that anyway, it was a pretty easy sell.
I'm sure this rant will fall on deaf ears, because most people have made up their minds and they're not going to let anything as trivial as the facts sway them from their myopic world view. But is it too much to ask that people make up their own minds about something, instead of simply voting against a candidate because somebody else told them to?
Yeah. Probably so.