Thursday, December 30, 2010

Dear 2011

As I leave the scene – okay, train wreck – after serving my time, I’m being presumptuous in making a few observations from which perhaps you can profit as you become the New Year. I’m using the pattern that 2009 left for me, putting it in doggerel, the better for its rhythm and rhyme to help you remember as you confront often strange and inexplicable circumstances:

Listen, my New Year, and you shall now hear
Just how it is at the end of this year,
The holiday firs are seen in their glow –
Once called Christmas trees…that name had to go;
Diversity wields its pure jihad toward God,
It is a religion, worldly and mod,
Look not for Jesus, except at Walmart...
While looking, of course, just fill up the cart.

Oh…Never look back at the promises made
A few months ago as the Truth was waylaid
When O and his pols predicted...perforce!...
That those out of work would number, of course,
A mere eight percent and that not for long
As government spent the economy strong;
“So...take heart, my dears, just go out and spend...”
The prexy said that…said the bad times would end.

Give thanks at this time that the demos hell-bent
On capping the gases that simply are meant
To make icebergs melt...catch folks unawares
And drown half the country, kill all polar bears,
Despite never reading the bill – cap-and-trade –
Since if they had done that they might have been made
To somehow defeat it...instead...seemed to dress
In jackets of strait…but the repubs…well, guess!.

Great things were enacted…the solons were bright,
Said “Don’t Ask, don’t tell” was simply not right,
And soon, the word is, that marriage will be
That he wed a him or her by a she;
The unisex thing the intellects know
Is now just the way that the nation must go,
So surrogate mothers or cloning is in,
The same-sexy parents all set to begin.

And think of the climate – especially just now,
This time of the year when to see a snow-plow
Is everyday stuff in much of the land
Where snow heretofore rarely managed to land;
And listen to Al, the guru of gore,
That soon will envelop this land more and more
As humans and beasts all succumb to the cold –
Frozen by warming as temps downward fold.

In case you’ve not noticed, remark now O’s CHANGE,
Admittedly…yes, well…it seems a bit strange,
But banking and autos are federalized
And everything everywhere must be downsized;
Put more air in tires and save on your fuel,
And use the right light-bulbs...yeah...don’t be a fool,
The planet is dying, the U.N. has said,
Stop breathing out carbon or Earth will be dead.

The prez said no oil wells offshore can be drilled,
Get used to the prices that you will be billed,
And mind you, he promised in campaigning mode
To skyrocket current right to overload;
And taxes he promised…and so did the veep…
To raise on the folks who succeed but are cheap,
He promised in two years those folks will pay up
When he wins again…the repubs’ bitter cup.

At year’s end think not of recession and such –
Obama’s guru of finance said as much...
Recession is over, thus said he to all,
So go to the mall and…well…have…a ball,
And simply pretend that the U.S. ain’t broke,
Just use credit cards and be part of the joke...
The veep said bankruptcy is nothing to fear,
Just borrow and spend and be of good cheer.

At year’s end don’t worry...the dollars are sound,
Just go to Beijing, where some billions are found,
And if you want jobs, go to Beijing and jive,
Those folks make our undies, our shoes...and they thrive;
Don’t look for those things where they used to be made,
“The land of the free,” now just a tirade,
Just wire the White House that you’re too big to fail,
Then wait for a check in the very next mail.

At year’s end fret not, for old Gitmo’s not gone,
Those terrorist dudes will not (gasp) face the dawn
In Brooklyn or out on the midwestern plain
Where they can chow down in the land of no pain
And laugh as they strut before TV’s bright light
And spew out their garbage in everyone’s sight,
Praise Allah and jihad...the prez saw the light –
Like all infidels, he would keep his head tight.

Do not hesitate…oh dear no, not a sec…
To keep in your mind your soft infidel neck,
When passing through airports, just take off your shoes,
Never start whining and don’t sing the blues,
And when they start scanning your skeleton rare
Just grin as your assets are laid out quite bare,
It’s not fun and games…the imams make plain,
That infidels jive…but only when slain.

At year’s end don’t worry if you might feel faint,
The Big O and demos are now your new saint,
Their health-care is promised for hangnails or plague
Or bones that are broken or feverish ague;
If old or if young, don’t worry at all,
For lines will not form until you need to call
And simply are told that in six months...about...
You get a knee-joint or a gall bladder out.

And as you get old toward the end of your year,
Just check the new rules and allay your fear,
The doctors are paid to counsel old guys
Just how to put death in a sort of disguise;
They put in perspective just how you should go,
Not kicking or screaming…just go with the flow,
With grace all around, just give up your space
And let some poor soul occupy that old place.

At year’s end chill out...don’t be stupid...oh no!
Not like policemen, as described by Big O,
Since he’s got your back from the crib to the grave,
And you from yourself he has promised to save;
And take it from prez, if you’re ever in doubt,
Teleprompters can help, with the stuff they give out,
And don’t hesitate if you’re asked to surmise
About the U.S. – be quick...APOLOGIZE!

With sympathy,

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Mathematician & the Ark

The self-appointed intellects who service the Lexington Herald-Leader with their wisdom have been banging away at the proposed Noah’s Ark Park soon to be built a few miles from Lexington, Ky. The claimed opposition by the paper to the park, which is scheduled to employ hundreds, has to do with tax incentives awarded by the state, thus making it a church/state violation since Noah is/was a biblical character. On this note, Roger Guffey, a former math teacher, furnished a screed of 26 December with a tongue-in-cheek request for equal treatment for an Evolution and Natural History Museum.

Guffey’s actual point: Only uneducated people believe there was such a thing as Noah’s Ark. His further point: “Charles Darwin's theory of natural selection is based on easily verifiable facts.” The fact that the two things have nothing to do with each other is simply beside the point. Guffey merely took the opportunity to rail against people whose understanding of the creation of the earth and all that’s upon it is different from his and, of course, those of all other intelligent people.

Later in the article, Guffey opines, “According to scientific estimates, more than 99 percent of all species that have ever lived have gone extinct.” In the first instance above, facts (Darwinism) are the things that matter and make the case. In the just noted instance, “estimates” will be gladly and unquestionably accepted. As a math teacher, would Guffey accept a fact with regard to the sum of 4 and 5, or would he prefer an estimate? The truth is that no one has the remotest idea of the number of species that have existed on the earth or what happened to them.

The intellectuals have always been troubled by their inability to explain “how God did it” or “how it happened (for the atheist),” the earth and Adam, that is. This a reason Guffey’s article is strange as relating to the church/state thing. Guffey obviously believes that man evolved from some type of lower form, though no one has ever been able to describe it…or even come close. However, Adam, Eve, Noah and family were people.

In the biblical creation account, God spoke with Adam and Eve, not with some sort of slime or a one-celled something-or-other perhaps swimming in a kind of primeval goo. The elitist does the easy thing and simply discounts the first 11 or so chapters of Genesis as MYTH, not actual facts…or even estimates, in order to cover all the bases. In other words, that part of the Bible, including the ark, has nothing to do with actual religion since it’s just a myth like the myths of Mt. Olympus and the Greek gods. Since neither Adam, Eve, nor Noah ever happened, how, then, could there be any connection of the park to flesh-and-blood religion and consequent church/state violations? The point, ipso facto, is moot and neither Guffey nor the paper should complain.

Guffey makes the case for the “survival of the fittest” (using bacteria in the hospital as an example) and few people will argue with that as it relates to the purely physical attributes or even mental acuity. Many, however, draw the line sharply between man and animal or bird or fish or tree, organisms that operate entirely on the basis of instinct or natural design that either succeeds or fails. The difference, of course, has to do with man’s ability to reason…in other words – as far as is known – to have a relationship with God, his creator, actually, according to scripture, even being made in God’s image.

There are people who believe in six 24-hour days of creation. So what! No one now living has the remotest idea of what happened in a given week – or any week – some 6,000 or so years ago. Others take the view biblically introduced in II Peter 3:8 that “with the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day” (NIV), and echoed in Psalm 90:4. It’s probable that nearly all Christians subscribe to this proposition (even squirrelly evangelicals), meaning that millenia could have elapsed between the first and fifth days of creation and more millenia between the fifth and sixth days, thus allowing for Guffey the mathematician and all the scientists enough creation-time to allow for pontificating and ridiculing the “flat-earthers” to their hearts’ content.

Oh yes…the LATEST! Drum-roll, please! Teeth thought to be 400,000-years-old and possibly belonging to the elusive “link” have just been found in a cave in Israel (27 December), thus shooting down the theory that man’s ancestors originated in Africa, even though, biblically, Baghdad seems about right, though not allowing for evolution of teeth. This will infuriate the Iranians and Somalis but perhaps Guffey will smile at the SCIENCE of it all, although the teeth might at one time have been on the ark. Who knows? If so, that would be a real bummer…the myth and all.

Oh well…Guffey made the case that this stuff doesn’t actually matter and that what does matter is how believers like himself make the world a better place. Right on!

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Friday, December 24, 2010

Philosophy & the Top 1%

It’s amazing what professors on liberal college campuses can come up with, and more amazing as they devolve into “emeritus status,” making one wonder if the maturing process is not in their genes. Brian Cooney, emeritus professor of – yep – philosophy at Centre College, Danville, Ky., lately in the news because of the performance of the Vienna Philharmonic there, delivered himself recently of philosophical caterwauling in an article in the Lexington Herald-Leader regarding the fact that the country is now a plutocracy, defined as “government by the wealthy.”

Okay…many if not nearly all members of Congress, as well as the president are wealthy, especially when compared to the hoi polloi. These entities are responsible for the conduct of the government; however, that was not even a consideration in Cooney’s essay concerning economics, obviously an area of expertise by any qualified philosopher. His target was the rich people (just the top 1%), but he didn’t describe how they actually rule the nation, especially at a time when liberals such as himself have been in complete Congressional control since 2007 and in total control since January 2009, with regard to the government itself.

Cooney began with this question: “Do the rich deserve their wealth?” His point apparently was that they don’t because that means they have more than others…and that’s not fair. Actually, the simple issue of envy may be at the heart of his obvious angst but on the chance that a philosopher would rise above that circumstance one is faced with deciding how “deserving” can be defined. If whatever the wealthy possesses has been acquired honestly, does that matter? With Cooney? No!

Cooney wrote: “In 2007, the latest year for which figures are available from the Federal Reserve Board, the top 1 percent of U.S. households owned 33.8 percent of the nation's private wealth, while the bottom 90 percent owned only 28.5 percent.” The other nine percent (not mentioned by the professor) owned 37.7%. College philosophy professors do not live anywhere near the poverty level, especially if their spouses also work – the norm) meaning that Cooney was probably in or near the elite top 10% that owned 71.5% of the nation’s private wealth, but it’s doubtful that in his exalted financial position he feels that his taxes should be messed-with. Hypocrisy is one of the most defining of all liberal philosophical principles.

According to, the median income of a liberal arts professor in the U.S. is currently $79,780. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median income of all workers last year was $38,168, or less than half of what the average professor received. Cooney’s point perhaps: Soak the rich rulers but leave me alone. If Cooney made the average when he was teaching, at least recently, he was taxed at 25% while the rich rulers paid 35% to Uncle Sam. Cooney’s tax rate was 40% less than the rich guy’s.

Here is vintage Cooney, from the article: “Any sensible person understands there must be enough income inequality to create incentives for the more talented and energetic members of society to do their utmost. Everyone benefits from such inequality.” Well…there went Cooney’s argument right down the drain. He railed against the perceived pernicious inequality and then said inequality is necessary…or else. Go figure. The fact is that he hasn’t a clue about economics.

More Cooney: “ … according to the Economic Policy Institute, the richest 10 percent received nearly two-thirds of total income growth from 1979-2007, while the bottom 20 percent received almost nothing.” Cooney didn’t mention the in-betweeners, 70%. Cooney was probably in or near that rich 10%, but his problem is with just the top one percent, so he very likely would not want the government to disturb his tax rate, even though 90% of citizens were worse off. Even if he were better off than just 70% or even 50%, wouldn’t that be too philosophically unjust to be tolerated?

More Cooney: “They [ruling class, whatever it is] are content to starve the public sector by depriving the government of revenue it needs to fund basic social programs.” The ruling class, whether Congress, the president, or rich people (Cooney insists upon the latter), makes the laws, but as far as is known, no plebiscite has ever been conducted among the rich people in order to effect the tax laws. One wonders how that could be done – maybe have every person with an income over x number of dollars register as a member of the ruling class and cast his/her vote in order not to starve the public sector…or, more likely, just starve it? Best not take a chance…that law of unintended consequensces thing!

In his last paragraph, Cooney asks: “Why should the members of a democratic society uphold the claims of the top 1 percent?” What claims? Why should the members of a democratic society uphold the claims (whatever they are – Cooney knows but didn’t say) of whatever percentage Cooney populates? What claims? He didn’t say. Most likely, there’s a deep philosophical angle to all of this, but it may escape the unenlightened altogether. Perhaps it’s fair to say that the government is responsible for upholding the laws of the land but that upholding everyone’s claims is just a bit vague, if not outrightly unphilosophical or maybe philosophical…who knows? Only the Shadow knows.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Other Militaries & DADT

The “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy has been reversed by Congress, thus fulfilling what the president thinks is absolutely necessary in order to have a properly engineered military sex-wise or gender-wise or preference-wise or something-in-between-wise, never mind the advice by the top field commanders as well as a huge segment of actual combat personnel that this is a bad idea.

One of the prime reasons given for this change is that the countries of Olde Europe have long since recognized the need to similarly reconfigure their militaries and done the “right” thing. In and of itself, this is contrary to a sensible argument in that this country is also following the lead of Olde Europe in most everything else even as Olde Europe is desperately trying on its slippery slope to rescue itself from the things this country is emulating, such as health-care.

There are countries of significant military capabilities (and threat) that desire no part of homosexuals in the military. This is from the BBC of 13 March 2003: Russia is to introduce new regulations which will ban homosexuals, drug addicts and alcoholics from serving in the armed forces. The new rules - published in the official Rossiyskaya Gazeta - say people "who have problems with their identity and sexual preferences" can only be drafted during war times. The ban - taking effect on 1 July - also extends to those who regularly use illegal drugs and alcohol. Officials say the changes are aimed at tightening health requirements for conscripts - even though they come at a time when the Russian military is believed to be struggling to fill its ranks.

This is from the Atlantic Council of the United States in an article of September 2006 by Colonel Jeffrey Holachek: According to Russian MoD statistics, since 2002 the reported number of newly registered HIV-positive service members has begun to decrease steadily. It would appear that the Russian military was plagued by homosexually transmitted AIDS, decided to correct the problem in the most effective way (banning homosexuals from service) with the results being obvious. This should have been a lesson for the U.S. Congress, but it is a lesson too late for the learning.

This is from the Palm Center, a research organization, of May 2002: Military officials said that the policy governing gay soldiers in Taiwan does not refer specifically to homosexuality but to "sexual orientation impairment," which traditionally has been interpreted to include homosexuals. In 1994, the defense ministry stopped treating homosexuality as an illness, but that same year, the military agreed to exempt men from conscription if psychiatrists concluded they were homosexual, according to a China Post report. This speaks for itself and involves a country in which military readiness is of tremendous importance, especially in light of China’s constant threat to take it over.

This is from Pink News…Europe’s largest Gay News Service of 17 November 2008: The government of South Korea has asked the constitutional court to confirm the ban on gays serving in the country’s Armed Forces. Servicemen face a year in jail for homosexual acts. In August a military court asked for a review of the constitutionality of the ban. “The military has a unique characteristics,” a defence ministry spokesman told AFP. “It has to maintain good combat capability. It requires a sound group life. It works for the public interest rather than personal happiness.” In other words, South Korea, in a constant state of threat from the North, as recently exhibited graphically in the media with the North’s bombardment of South Korean territory and sinking of a South Korean Navy vessel, intends for no social engineering to disrupt its military readiness and capability.

In the recent DADT hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee, the matters of military readiness and unit cohesion, especially during a time of combat such as in Iraq and Afghanistan, top field commanders (general officers) in the Army, Air Force and Marines insisted that DADT should not be disturbed. The Congress hasn’t listened to them but has listened to Defense Secretary Gates and Joint Chiefs Chairman Admiral Mullen, who serve at the pleasure of the president and likely wouldn’t be in their positions if they disagreed with him. Gates will be gone in January, so would never have had to wrestle with the inevitable problems perpetrated by the Congressional mindlessness.

A handful of homosexuals are in the military but remain there because they do not exhibit it. What they do in private and away from duty is their business. Others get drunk, some visit prostitutes…nothing new about that. The notion that homosexuals are forced to lie, a premier argument of the homosexuals, has no weight because they are not asked, in the first place. The objective of the militant homosexual groups is the approval of their behavior as normal, something so off-the-wall as to be ridiculous. They know this, so they do the next best thing, which is to flaunt it, a sort of in-your-face approach, something akin to spite or revenge. The water will hit the wheel when the first service-member-homosexuals show up in the lurid “Gay Pride Parades,” with the proper insignia, making sure that every onlooker understands them to be an example of the military, when nothing could be farther from the truth.

This piece has remarked the problem with respect to health reasons. One can only wonder what the outcome will be socially when the homosexuals flaunt their condition…and that will happen.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Lady, DOJ & the Hajj

Dear Schoolteacher Safoorah Khan,

First, just let me congratulate you on your determination to get to Mecca before you die and risk going to hell for not making the Hajj. The school board in Chicago has refused your request for three weeks off to make the trip, thus forcing Attorney General Holder to sue the board to see that it either accedes to your request or pays you handsomely for some sort of academic PTSD and awards you a lifetime disability pension, the latter being my choice but to each his own. I am the CEO of the Institute for Modifying All Government Entities (known as IMAGE, for short), an organization designed for the purpose of helping people appear in the best light possible. Since most people (those uncouth Christians, mostly) probably object to your request (or even your existence), account your being Muslim, IMAGE can help you appear as perfectly normal, even admirable since most people with good sense are terrified of being trampled to death at Mecca, the usual extra-curricular activity vis-à-vis the Hajj.

The IMAGE agency that would deal with your case is known as the Headquarters for Official Liberal Damnation of Egregious Rendition, known for short by its acronym HOLDER. This outfit helped Sheik Khalid of 9/11 fame immeasurably, despite his admission of guilt and request to be exterminated, when it was thought that he would be tried in New York instead of Guantanamo since he had been in multi-rendition mode and spilled his guts, thus saving perhaps millions. Since you could never hope, as a Muslim female, to allow your holy self to get through airport frisking or scanning (forms of domestic rendition-torture), HOLDER can, possibly applying to Holder himself, mobilize action on your part in favor of skirting those regulations. Failing that, HOLDER could possibly disguise you as a man, though that might be problematic but only to the extent of maybe 20 years in the Big House. Are you up to that sacrifice for the Hajj?

William Ayers, a close friend of the president and a crafty much-appreciated domestic terrorist with the Weather Underground (known as American al-Qaeda) teaches at a university in Chicago and could also be helpful in any mobilization effort such as, for instance, demonstrating at the airport and maybe blowing up a restroom or two while you took advantage of the distraction to make it to the plane. There would be little danger in this since AG Holder doesn’t prosecute the New Black Panthers for violence and certainly would not prosecute a friend and ally of the president.

Since you are now in the public eye, you will need the IMAGE agency known as the Theatrical Organization for Righteous Temporizing Undergirding Rhetorical Efficacy, or TORTURE, for short. Everything that happens will be televised so you will need to present an image to the public of a caring, religious soul merely carrying out Allah’s will for your life. TORTURE will help you know just how far to go in playing to the cameras during this ordeal, as well as how to make your pitch to the public as a tortured victim of an insensitive country. Victimization is a hallmark of government these days. TORTURE’s expert on both style and substance is the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah Wright. He will teach you how to be heard over at O’hare or Midway without benefit of microphones. He will teach you the words of some old gospel hymns he uses in his sermons and even a bit of tune to use for effect. He will show you the appropriate African dress (he says Eden, whether Muslim or whatever, was in the Congo) and may even loan you some of his sermonic attires – wild when compared to the bongo-like delivery and the “pulpit shuffle.” You might even make American Idol.

IMAGE’s department responsible for properly stroking the powerful is known as the Consortium for Honoring Establishment Nincompoops and Egotistical Yahoos, known, for short, as CHENEY. Never underestimate the need for pandering, and the more shallow the pandered-to, the easier is the task. In a word, this simply means that CHENEY will get your case before a congressional committee if necessary, automatically inducing a hearing in the Senate, though the House might not be a possibility after this month. You teach in the Chicago system, which, like all other Chicago institutions, is, ipso facto, a mélange of democrats, whether alive or dead for voting purposes, perhaps the latter having a superior IQ to the former. This means that your problem could go before a judge whose elevator doesn’t reach the top floor, meaning that he might consider the Hajj to be a gambling joint susceptible to kickback schemes for licensing. I’m sure you, as a part of the establishment, get the point and see your need for help.

Since in your fame you will be required to make speeches and TV appearances on MSNBC against the government interference in your practice of religion, IMAGE is instituting an agency to help you, the Bureau for Legal and Theological Hajj-Ethics Rhetoric, known by its acronym BLATHER. The speeches, well-reasoned and different from the theatrics mentioned above, will be designed (and if necessary put on teleprompters) so that you can make the Hajj as religious an experience as a Baptist baptism in the river or a Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica or – to be fair to everyone – as spiritual as a chicken-beheading at a Satanist convention, nudist or otherwise. This will keep you from forgetting and mentioning Sharia Law or cutting off hands or beheading Kurds or stoning “those women.”

I hope to hear from you soon.

I.M. Reverself, CEO

Monday, December 13, 2010


In balmy Cancun-by-the-sea
The I-P-C-C came to play
And thousands more insipidly
Joined in to play and look for pay;
They came from all the world throughout
To caterwaul of climate-change –
Claimed warming…yes…without a doubt,
Was making elephants act strange;
Nobelist Gore had made it plain
That man was messing with God’s plan
And, though some called him quite insane,
Insisted there were things to ban;
He said that light-bulbs had to go,
Their use of current quite too much,
He fought their incandescent glow,
Said only hard-of-heart used such;
He speechified…well…everywhere
That evil people hated ice
And thus deprived the polar bear
Of pleasant living – chilly, nice;
Yes, Algore made it very plain
That man kills Mother Nature’s way…
He causes earthquakes…stops the rain,
And kills the forests – gasp – so fey;
Obama’s reps were there to make
His case that carbon is so bad
That drastic measures we should take,
Lest all the world become quite mad
At Uncle Sam for burning coal
To make electric things…well…work,
That U.S. folks just have no soul,
Should pay the world for this strange quirk;
And gasoline – oh – say no more…
Is gross, so fossilized, impure,
Emitting evil, to the core,
And warmth the cosmos must endure;
He recommends to check all tires
And make their p-s-i just so,
Lest all the world have ghastly fires
As warming hovers to and fro;
Alarmists view the cattle herd
As damning air with methane gas
And claim that this is so absurd –
We die of beef, of course, en masse;
The prexy owns G-M, of course,
And, with the unions, Chrysler, too,
Yet, seems to want to try the horse
Since cars emit vile C-O-2;
If not the horse, then batteries –
But never mind the source of charge,
Which comes from coal-fired enemies
That poison air with their discharge;
Cancun was limping at its close,
The partiers…well…rather glum,
The Cancun temps at record lows
For days made partying so bum;
The coolness came from global heat
That mostly U.S. folks have brought –
At least that was the common bleat
Of those who braved the cold’s onslaught;
The beaches at fifty degrees
Invited mockery and flight –
Another reason global fees
The U.S. owes for such a plight;
Kyoto, with a whimper, went…
Japan and Russia…well…demurred,
And China promised to repent –
No one believed a single word;
The thousands on expense accounts
Or maybe through a U-N fund
Have left for home on fossiled mounts
With spirits sadly moribund;
So…Cancun is now history,
Like Copenhagen, laughingly,
COP 17 next year will be
In balmy Durban-by-the-sea;
The temps should reach eighty degrees,
But global warming could invade
As summertime brings gentle breeze,
And put Cancun in icy shade!
By then the warming may be moot
Since cooling has gone on for years,
But other culprits follow suit
To keep the world in doubts and fears;
Perhaps I-P-C-C will claim
That fateful cooling has set in,
That Bush and Cheney get the blame,
With Halliburton’s yang and yin;
These evil entities are said
By Truthers ranging far and wide
To do bad things, fill earth with dread
And laugh at simple fratricide
Like 9/11’s tragedy
When, with Osama, they bade well
To wreck U.S. economy,
Replace it with their greedy sell,
Or caused the levees’ weird collapse
When sweet Katrina swept the seas
Right through those wide and awful gaps
And brought Big Easy to its knees;
Yes, coolness is well on its way,
The I-P-C-C may suspect,
That’s why warm Durban-by-the-bay
Will sport the climate’s best effect;
The gurus at the C-R-U
Will not be there to scare the world,
The hockey-stick will be gone, too,
At Mann the insults would be hurled;
You were a great time for hot air –
Not even it could make things jell…
For partiers, it was not fair.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Obama & the Caste-System

It appears that the president will be forced to accept the extension of all the current tax rates. The talking-heads and others keep yammering about tax-cuts but, of course, nobody’s receiving a cut. The last tax-cuts took place in 2001 and 2003, representing a lessening of the burden enhanced by former president Clinton and a democratic Congress in 1993. Reversion to the old rates will take place in January unless the Congress acts to extend the current rates, as it seemingly will do.

Obama promised during his campaign that he would see to it that the rates reverted for only the people in the top rate (earning $250,000 or more), thus raising their taxes from 35% to 39.6% of income. Republicans have argued that this will unduly affect small-business operators, who need capital to finance their enterprises and prepare for the future. The fact that the nation is slogging along in deep recession, with an unemployment rate actually close to 20%, is proof that they mean business – or no business. Obama’s constant mantra was that the middle-class (whatever that is) deserved relief (though he promised no cut for them), while the upper class deserved to support the lower classes by paying nearly 40% of their income to government.

Thus, the tax arguments are class-related and, whether by design or not, induce class warfare. In this country, that war is not between the poor and the rich as much as between the so-called middle class and the rich. The differentiation in tax rates does what Obama said during his campaign that the Constitution neglected, i.e., redistribution of the wealth, something that would have gagged the founders. People in the middle class desire a certain life-style that they can’t afford, so through the tax system their life-style is to be subsidized by those who earn more than they, in Obama’s view.

The top tax-rate 1951-63 was more than 90% (everything over $400,000) every year. The guy who earned $1,400,000 in 1953 could expect to pay at least $920,000 in income tax, though, of course, he would figure an adjusted gross income like everyone else. This is the situation many people in this country would like to see now, the better to have life-styles they can’t afford but expect someone else to fund, using the tax system.

Current tax rates per (head of) household (adjusted gross income in dollars): 0% up to 11,950; 15% up to 45,550; 25% up to 117,650; 28% up to 190,550; 33% up to 373,650; 35% over that amount. Median household income in 2008: 52,029, income taxes – 13,007.25 less deductions. The guy who makes a million, if not 27 times as much, will still pay many times as much in taxes for the same protections and services as the head of that median household. That seems unreasonable, but the president wants to make that guy even further subsidize those who intend to live above their means on his dime by taking 39.6% of his income. The guy who makes a million will probably cough up close to 59 times as much as the head of the household earning 45,000. Just crunch the numbers, taking into account all deductions/loopholes (designed by Congress) for all parties. This is the stuff the media rarely if ever mentions.

The top tax-rate was 70% in 1980 (Reagan election) for an AGI of 215,400 and over. By 1988, while the nation prospered and the military was greatly expanded, that rate went down to 28% (29,750 and over). Reagan and the democrat Congress lowered the taxes, while George H.W. Bush and a democrat Congress raised the top rate to 31% in 1991 and Clinton and a democrat Congress raised it again to a whopping 39.6% in 1993. George Bush and a republican Congress cut it back to where it is, while the social engineers (mostly nutcase democrats and fast-asleep republicans) told every head of household he/she could own a house whether or not it was affordable, thus being the absolute and only cause of the recession as the truth set in. To his credit, George Bush tried to fight this as far back as 2003-04.

The whining middle class needs to admit that it intends to make those who honestly and legally acquire wealth subsidize their life-styles, thus putting themselves on the public dole. There’s no such thing as a fair tax though there are ways to make tax collections fairer, but until those in the middle class erase their envy and admit that they are simply trying to cadge everything they can out of those who might work harder, be smarter, take risks, or just get lucky this constant class warfare will continue.

Obama owes organizations like ACORN and the labor unions since they furnished the grunt-work to get him in office. This attempted tax rip-off of the better-off is his payback, but even many in his own party see it as foolish. This is not even to mention that Obama is surrounded by Wall Street types, did nothing to stop them from awarding themselves huge bonuses and is actually their apparatchik.

As it stands, a guy with an AGI of $260,000 has to cough up $91,000 to the government. Under Obama’s plan, he would be liable for nearly $103,000. That’s enough to give anyone pause with respect to investing in a business. Obama appointed a number of tax-cheats to offices in his administration, an indication that gaming the system is in order – like soaking the rich in the name of fairness. Disgusting!

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Saturday, December 04, 2010

The Commanders Speak Truth to Power

It was almost painful to watch the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” Senate hearing in the Armed Services Committee via C-Span on 03 December. The panel of witnesses included the top military brass actually responsible for the performance of the various military branches of service. These men, some if not all of whom have been hardened by service in various military operations throughout the world (enough service ribbons and stars to decorate a Christmas tree), tried to do their duty under pressure created by the social engineers, the president, the Joint Chiefs chairman, Defense secretary and committee democrat honchos Levin and Lieberman, neither of whom, along with Obama, has served in the military, thus has virtually no idea of the ramifications of what they’re trying to ram through Congress in its lame-duck session.

These commanders, without being as blunt as they are in their milieu of operations, tried to tell the committee that homosexuals should not be in the military, though some are there without letting their homosexuality be known. The highest-profile military person in the country presently is PFC Bradley Manning, ensconced in a military prison in Quantico, Virginia, for his alleged theft of the classified documents appearing in the current WikiLeaks fiasco. Bradley is an un-closeted homosexual, who has written of his “orientation” on Face-Book and even of his boyfriend, a "self-described drag queen." I did not hear Manning mentioned but the facts of his case had to cloud the hearing.

The 256-page report put together by the Pentagon over the past months purportedly defining the attitude of military personnel concerning the matter has just been released, thus the committee members had had little to no chance to study it, but Senator Levin decided to stage the hearing anyway, starting with Secretary Gates and Joint Chiefs Chairman Admiral Mullen on 02 December, probably understanding that both the commanders and some senators such as McCain would tear it apart for the obvious propaganda it is. Levin’s party holds the cards, so it didn’t matter, especially since DADT is buried in the current Defense bill, which is in need of passing.

The glowing reviews given to the report alluding to no problem with repeal of DADT were totally negated by what was buried in the report, namely that huge percentages of the military, especially in the cadres serving in combat areas and on ships, are dead-set against repeal and even consider leaving the service if it is enacted and/or discouraging others from joining. The commanders made it plain that repeal during a time of war, as is currently the case, is unthinkable, putting the troops at greater than ordinary risk as unit cohesion breaks down. Levin and Lieberman seemed either unable to grasp this or simply didn’t care. Obama has promised it, notwithstanding the law of the land.

Perhaps a focal point of the matter has to do with the difference between a homosexual serving “silently” with regard to his orientation or preference – who knows – and the homosexual who flaunts his nature. It’s the knowing about the guy whose bunk can be touched in its closeness that is damning, even though service-members may sometimes suspect homosexuality in a comrade. It’s the knowing about the guy in the shower and using the same toilet facilities, with the knowledge of the perversions/filth of homosexual behavior. It’s the wondering about what will happen in combat.

Perhaps the greatest disservice to the argument has to do with comparing it to the difficulties encountered in the integration of African-Americans and women into the services. This is akin to comparing apples and oranges. Those two groups had to do with physical and mental normalcy, while the current flap has to do not with race or gender but with sexual perversion, regardless of race and gender. Blacks and women have been assimilated on the basis of how probably 99% of them function mutually, but just as one rotten apple can ruin a bushel of them, the commanders made it plain, at least inferentially, that one homosexual can ruin a unit. This is not what the president wants to hear.

Hanging over the entire process is the recent decree by a California female federal judge to effectively overturn DADT without even a fare-thee-well to the Congress, thus doing the president’s bidding without the hassle and predictable gridlock occasioned in the Congress. Her decree is in abeyance currently by a higher court but one can pretty well guess what the 5-4-oriented SCOTUS might do with the matter, notwithstanding the constitutional posture as it especially relates to national defense.

Gates and Mullen are political appointees, Gates from the presidency of the University of Texas. University campuses/faculties, hotbeds of ultra-liberalism, would approve orangutans for service regardless of their sex if they could demonstrate an ability to peel a banana. Perhaps Gates is afflicted with that mindset. The questionnaire used in the report-process was handled in the backdrop of the House vote to repeal DADT. Besides receiving far less than 100% response, the document was worthless on its face if for no other reason the fact that repeal was thought to be automatic no matter what any military person thought. Indeed, the question as to whether or not to repeal didn’t even appear on the document.

Never has a worse whitewash been perpetrated on the Congress or the public. The obvious purpose of the whole thing was not “whether or not” but “how to.” No wonder the shabby results happened. The respondents knew they had no voice. Stinks!

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Osama, the Mullah & Mahmoud

It’s late afternoon in a cave near the Kyber Pass. Seated around a large hookah are al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar, and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, hereinafter referenced as O, M, and A, respectively, but not respectfully.

**O: Haven’t seen you for a while Mahmoud, praise Allah for good tidings of great joy which shall…
**M: You’ve been reading the Bible again, Osama…Allah, forgive this fool…
**O: I got tired of Dr. Seuss, Mohammed, and there was nothing else here…anyway, I’ll flush it as soon as I get to the part about the three Muslims and the star, praise Allah for more modern transportation today. Have you ever ridden a camel, Mahmoud?
**A: Allah be ashamed of these Sunni heretics! (ducks behind a boulder) Wait, Mohammed, nothing personal…take that AK-47 out of my eye. I meant the bad heretics – Karzai’s gang that never shoots straight…always high on the poppies his brother supplies. By the way, you wouldn’t have a little extra…
**M: That’s not poppies in the hookah, Mahmoud. Praise Allah for Marlboros…that’s tobacco and I’ll trade it only for some fresh figs.
**A: I thought good Sunnis didn’t use tobacco or eat pork but I think I smelled bacon as I approached the cave.
**O: Bah, Mahmoud! Mohammed is a Mullah, praise Allah for saving his one good eye…and he makes his own rules. You Shiites are so hopped up on stoning women that…
**A: And you, Mohammed…Allah forgive him…won’t let little girls go to school and your soldiers can’t read or drive trucks or…
**M: Enough! (fires a round into the cave-roof)
**O: Now see what you’ve done, Mohammed…Allah forgive him…bat entrails are in my hair and the latrine is overflowing again…look at my prayer rug, it’s…
**A: I’m deep in smelly stuff, Mohammed…Allah be not sniffing…how could you…just like my trip here in January when I told you to get ready for the Grand Imam, the Twelfth Mahdi.
**M: Bah! You and your Shiite babblings! We need to get down to business. What brings you here, Mahmoud…and it had better be good since I’m missing the American delayed TV-soaps?
**A: It’s the WikiLeaks thing, comrades…Allah be ashamed of Muslims for what has appeared in this garbage. Imagine King Abdullah…Allah give his bones no healing in America or wherever he is…begging the Americans to carry out a fatwa on me, putting me in the same low-class scum as Rushdie, who writes pages about things such as his lover’s pubic hair. He should still have a fatwa on him.
**O: You don’t say, Mahmoud! What book would that be…not that I’d be interested, of course?
**M: Not to worry, Mahmoud. The American president, the Obamessiah they call him…hoo hah…will not do that, even though he bowed before the king last year…praise Allah. He was born as one of us but – come to think of it – I don’t know if he’s Sunni or Shiite.
**O: He’s fighting us, Mohammed, so that makes him Shiite…unless he’s Kurdish or Wahabbi, of course, like the fat princes in Riyadh. If he’s Shiite…Allah strike him with a thousand scorpions…we must watch him, and you, Mahmoud – wipe that silly grin off your face – had better be careful what you say, especially in private.
**A: Why is that, Osama?
**O: The WikiLeak papers say Clinton tells her diplomats to spy on all other diplomats, especially at the UN and in embassies. You should hear what the one in Turkey said about the Turk foreign minister, right on the day he met with her…hahahahaha…Allah feel the joy! You should hear what the cables say about that worm Karzai!
**M: Oh hoo hah! That’s better than Jimmy Carter calling Tony Blair compliant and subservient to the USA…and he was in England when he said it. Allah be amused! Of course, he could have forgotten what country he was in. Maybe he thought he was in France. The Frenchies don’t like anyone.
**A: Don’t take it the wrong way, Osama, but your shoe- and skivvy-bombers are either too dumb or they have second thoughts about that promise of the 72 virgins. And the one with all the bombs in his SUV in Times Square…hahahahaha…he pushed the button and made only smoke.
**O: Oh hoo hah, but we’re winning, Mahmoud. Maybe those guys had never worn shoes or underwear and hadn’t been trained how to…but just try getting through an American airport now. Everybody’s underwear is on display…hahahahaha…Allah be not mortified but amused! I love the scan-pictures on American TV, especially those skeletons of women. Just a little imagination and…
**M: Stop that lewdness, Osama. Remember, I’m a mullah…the power of life and death! I would gouge out one eye for that remark since it would be better to go one-eyed into heaven than to…
**A: A-A-R-R-G-G-H-H…that’s the Bible, Mohammed. The virgins are in Paradise. Remember!
**M: Like Osama said, there’s nothing to read here and…
**O: Even worse, no pictures…Allah, forgive the whining but I’ve been in these damnable caves for nine long years now and…
**M: You need to pray more than five times a day, Osama.
**O: I do but I just found out that the compass Chavez gave me as a gift for the 9/11 massacre points to Caracas as true north and I’ve been praying toward the North Pole and the evil Santa Claus instead of Mecca and Allah.
**A: You would have been praying toward the evil Abdullah in Mecca, Osama, as well as Allah, so try getting a new compass…may Allah reform your ignorance! But what should we do about the WikiLeaks thing before it gets out of hand and starts a war somewhere?
**M: Especially a war in Iran…eh, Mahmoud? Maybe you should invite the Secretary Clinton in for an afternoon tea. That might give her a shove toward unseating the Obama in 2012. By the way, why haven’t you met with him…Allah be disappointed at such intransigence! He said no preconditions.
**A: Bah! I have made the preconditions this time and he’s refused to see me. He offered me three prisoners from Gitmo for a meeting but I’m holding out. He offered that little government in the South Pacific mega-millions of dollars to take the Chinese Muslims off his hands…oh hahahahaha…Chinese Muslims. Whoever heard of Chinese Muslims? Praying toward the east for them would be praying toward the evil Obama…impossible!
**O: Do to WikiLeaks what you always do, Mahmoud, when you have a problem…Allah give him wisdom.
**A: And exactly how would you behead the Internet, Osama? I can’t even give it a thorough stoning and nobody can find the WikiLeaks devil…he’s on the lam, as the crazy Americans say, for rape and sexual abuse in Sweden. Maybe you could offer him a cave where they could never find him, Osama, and then I could…
**O: Only if he can bring pictures…maybe from those airport scanners…

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Preacher Takes a Stand???

There’s nothing more vacuous than the attempt by ministers to somehow reconcile their faith with political correctness whenever an obvious contradiction between the two occurs. Since time immemorial, preachers have argued about the facets (doctrines, theology) of the faith itself and folks are accustomed to that in-house, normal activity, even when it obscures far weightier matters introduced and evolved in scripture, not to mention history, culture, and current-day media.

Enter Paul Prather, who is the pastor of a church in the Mt. Sterling, Ky., area and a self-proclaimed evangelical-Pentecostal-charismatic, a designation shared by him with Jim Swilley, who is the pastor of a mega-church in Conyers, Georgia, and who in 1998 was consecrated as a Bishop in the International Communion of Charismatic Churches (ICCC) and, in that capacity provides oversight and covering to more than 170 churches and ministries. Swilley, twice divorced and the father of four, has recently “come out” to his congregation, proclaiming his homosexuality.

Prather devoted his column of 27 November in the Lexington Herald-Leader, Lexington, Ky., to somehow excusing Swilley or at least making him okay, mainly because, after all, he’s just like most folks regarding sin, citing such things as gluttony, temper tantrums, divisiveness, divorce, lying, cheating in business, fornication, fantasies of heterosexual adultery, drunkenness, wavering faith, selfish ambition, unforgiveness and greed. He also threw in fat people, doubters and fantasizers for good measure.

So…Prather implied that folks should cut Swilley some slack and presumably let him continue on in his good work. According to Prather, the Bible is ambiguous (of two minds) anyway, but if that’s so, one wonders why Prather bothers with it, assuming he uses it in his ministry/preaching. A Bible that’s always non-specific is just like a blueprint that’s always non-specific for…say, a building of 75 stories. Just draw the lines anywhere, build it and hope the thing doesn’t collapse.

Swilley has stated that he was “born” homosexual but managed two marriages and four children in spite of it. Really? Gene Robinson, homosexual Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire, lives with his “partner” but has also been married and has two children. Really?

Prather said, “Wait, it gets more complicated. When any particular human frailty becomes too prevalent to ignore, we agree it's not a sin anymore. We're selective about what we condemn.” This may be the truest statement in Prather’s entire screed, and he seems to be living proof of that declaration. What he did was define the accommodation that the leaders of many denominations, especially the “mainliners” (actually not Prather’s charismatic tradition…he’s an exception) are attempting to inculcate.

Some, maybe all, of the mainline denominations are losing membership exponentially at the very time they are trying to decide whether or not men should marry men or homosexuals should be ordained to the ministry. The catalyst: political correctness vs. scripture, with scripture losing out. Congregations/denominations are torn apart because of this brainless exercise. The scriptural keystone of marriage is the establishing of families…through births (be fruitful and multiply). Men just can’t bring that off.

Bishop Eddie Long, pastor of another mega-church (said to have 25,000 members) in Lithonia, Georgia, (is something in the water?) and his organization have recently been sued by members (or perhaps former members) of his outfit for coercing them to have sex with him when they were boys. One wonders what Prather thinks of that, not to mention all the pedophile priests in the Catholic Church. Just cut them some slack and let them continue their good work? That’s what the church did until it was caught simply transferring the low-lifes to different parishes, where they continued their wicked ways…and the church has paid dearly financially, but the victims have been scarred for life.

The main issue in this matter is not Swilley and his peccadilloes. He can live any kind of life or double- or triple-life he desires. The issue is whether or not he should continue in his position. In Long’s case, the likelihood is that the lawsuits will be settled out of court, with the money coughed up by the congregants, and Long will probably soldier on. Swilley apparently will stay in his position, though his church and denomination are splitting over the matter, and who could blame them? Nothing is more condemned – and very specifically, very unambiguously – in scripture than homosexual behavior…in both the Old and New Testaments.

Prather wrote that he would give Swilley a hug, operating via “mercy and grace,” something only God can do anyway. What sort of message does that send to his congregants, especially his youth groups? This is how Prather the elitist wound it up, “But that's not to say I don't understand those who walked out. They acted from fear. They were doing what they hoped was right, even though I might think they were wrong.” Apparently, he just doesn’t get it. They were not acting “from fear.” Fear from what? They were acting on the basis of disgust, pure and simple. Would Prather give a hug to a preacher/adulterer, preacher/pedophile, preacher/thief and suggest he should continue in leadership? Who knows? Political correctness rules!

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Friday, November 26, 2010

Dr. Jekyll, Mr. Hyde, POTUS & Cass

It’s just past one a.m. in the little room off the Oval Office and Dr. Jekyll and his alter ego Mr. Hyde are meeting with President Obama and his regulation czar, Cass Sunstein, hereinafter referenced as J, H, O, and S, respectively, if not necessarily respectfully.

**O: Glad you could make it guys, you’ve always been a big help when I need…
**J: I say, Edward Hyde, did he refer to us as “guys,” representatives of Her Majesty and the empire on which the sun never sets…okay…not quite the same now…but I feel somehow so dirty…guys…
**O: Sorry about that, Henry…I’ll just repeat my apology from the last time you were here and I forgot…
**H: And corrected himself to call us mateys…oh hoo hah, Benjamin Franklin must be tossing in his…
**S: So what’s wrong with mateys, Mr. Hyde…you’re dangerously close to exhibiting a racist demeanor and that just doesn’t get it in this land of the free…
**H: And the home of the knave…as you so ably describe yourself in that remark, Mr. … I say, have we met? I’d at least like to know whom I’m about to bludgeon…oh hahahahaha…blood everywhere…get out from under the table, Mr. Whatever…just a bit o’ the blarney, as they say in the Irish colony.
**O: Gentlemen, meet Cass Sunstein, my regulatory czar. He’s in charge of seeing that everyone and everything in this country runs smoothly, that there’s no discrimination and that…
**H: Oh…I get it…he’s the one who decides when the death panels are remiss in seeing the old codgers off to eternity and sets them right. Oh…what a jolly good job…maybe a lethal injection or even better, land mines in the nursing-home corridors…oh hahahahaha…
**J: Stop it Edward. What he means, Cass, is that you’re on the right track. We have that rationed care already in the kingdom and can promise you that costly transplants are never done if the patient is just allowed to live until…
**H: He dies of pneumonia or blows out his brains, whichever comes first…oh hahahahaha…
**O: Gentlemen, gentlemen, let’s get to the matter at hand…now where’s that damn teleprompter when I need it? What IS the matter at hand, Cass? John Kerry told me he thought of it day before yesterday or maybe last week or last month or…I’ve had a long month and…
**S: Please accept my apology, Mr. Hyde. I didn’t mean to imply…
**H: Apology accepted, Cass. Every time I visit any of the colonies I have to remember that refinement comes hard to the natives.
**J: By the by, Barry, back in June when we were last here in this dreadful and notorious room – do you, too, have cute interns in here occasionally, you know, let the good times roll – you asked us to tell you whose arses to kick in the BP-Gulf fiasco that you didn’t bother to look in on for weeks. How many did you kick under the bus, as you colonials quaintly put it?
**S: No asses were kicked, Mr Jekyll, after I explained to the commander-in-chief that the fault lay solely with the Bush/Cheney/Osama/Halliburton cabal. It’s well-known that a rogue submarine outfitted by Halliburton and manned with some Muslim jihad-types headed for the virgins was crashed into the well-head and…
**H: Oh…hahahahaha…too deep for anyone to go down and prove you to be a liar, eh, Cass, old boy? Did any blood rise to the surface with all that oil and…oh dear…maybe even a few arms or legs.
**J: Stop it Edward! The term “liar” is just a generic term that Edward uses to describe strange people…oh dear, that didn’t come off too well. Oh well, since I’m into the muckety-muck already, is it true, Cass, that you think dogs and cats should have the right to sue their masters over ill-treatment, perceived or real…you know, soy products instead of polar bear livers in their feed-bowls?
**S: Let me just preface my answer by informing you that I’m a graduate of Harvard Law, meaning that I’m absolutely…
**H: On the lunatic fringe…oh, Barry, that’s rich…aren’t you also Harvard Law…
**S: …And that animals have the right not to be mistreated…and Mr. Hyde…REALLY…masters is so…well, gauche, uncivilized, racist. The term is partners, as in two-of-a-kind.
**J: Oh…that’s jolly well interesting Cass. Does that mean that humans can bite each other on the leg when it’s deemed necessary…like confronting a recalcitrant postman about being late?
**O: (jumping up) NOW I remember. It’s the Tea Party thing, gentlemen. I need advice on how to deal with these people.
**H: EGAD! Have you no shame, Barry? That’s a touchy subject in the empire…even now, after all these years. We still never go near Boston, the seat of incivility.
**J: And the location of Harvard, by the by…right, Edward? By the way, Barry, didn’t you mention in your campaign that you would share an afternoon tea anytime with that monster, Ahmadinejad…absolutely no pre-conditions…
**H: Maybe throw in a beheading or two with the crumpets just to make for a happy time with hugs all around…except for the beheadees, of course…oh hahahahaha…all that blood with the sugar-cubes…
**J: I’ve heard of the democrats and the republicans and the greens and the independents…but, the TEAS? I’ve never heard of that party. Who is its head LEAF…oh dear…pardon the pun. What’s the matter, Cass…you know…tea leaves…get it, Cass…tea leaves, the head, oh…never mind.
**O: All jokes aside, gentlemen, the Tea Partiers are out to get me! They don’t have a party…they just have a lot of…
**H: Nerve! That’s it…a lot of nerve, the scoundrels! Just fight nerve with nerve, Barry. Challenge them to a duel…something like box-cutters at three inches…oh…hahahaha…blood everywhere…aortas spewing!
**J: What Edward means, Barry, is that you must engage them on their own turf, that is, do what they say or as the mountain-williams in your Kentucky say, take low and go down until you can get the upper hand again, usually by using bribes. After all, this is government we’re talking about…how deucedly clever of me, eh, Edward…and without a bit of blood!
**H: Oh, I say, Henry, even though I prefer at least some sort of concussion, which is the play of choice in vulgar American football, you have made the point.
**S: Please, Mr. Hyde, you have the habit of speaking so disparagingly about everything American but to make light of football is akin to secular blasphemy, which is almost as bad as spiritual blasphemy, which is s-o-o-o-o impolitic…even irreligious…
**J: Speaking of which, Edward, do you think this tea served in Styrofoam cups instead of fine china is more than a bit demeaning? Careful there, Cass, fainting at just a slight insult is s-o-o-o-o unmanly.
**H: In merry old England, I would use the Sir Danvers Carew Treatmentthat I invented, otherwise known as the “crushed-skull-protocol,” but in deference to our hosts and their fellow democrats, why not just leave them to where they’re headed…the dogs, of course? Ta-ta!

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

U.S. Hostage to Muslim Jihad?

There can be little doubt in the jihadist capitals (caves and otherwise) of the world that the Muslim monsters are laughing uproariously as they celebrate holding the countries of the civilized world hostage.
Just remark how they’ve co-opted the liberties of a supposedly free people in this country, reduced now to virtual sexual abuse (exposing of carnal knowledge) in the nation’s airports, whether by the groping that would otherwise be a felony or x-rays that turn up the strangest abnormalities.

Shades of Abu Ghraib…dogs sniffing all over the place while travelers re-attire themselves with socks and whatever else they’ve divested in the name of safety, maybe artificial limbs or pouches or implants of one kind or another. One wonders if explosives can be squirted into the wrinkle areas via the Botox route and later set off when the passenger punches in the numbers and sends her/his head off to Paradise, along with a few hundred others, already at 40,000 feet.

The talking-heads and pundits are having a field day with the whole matter, most of them against such invasions of privacy as body-scanners and “enhanced pat-downs,” not as bad as enhanced interrogation procedures, though the talking-heads, especially with a view toward making Obama the villain, are making it so. Is Reagan International in Washington a reflection of Gitmo? They think so.

These elitists can say anything they like, interview anyone they like and pooh-pooh the current safety measures until the cows come home, and, of course, continue to fly relatively safely as much as they like. What they actually seem to be saying is that suspicious people should be checked, not suspicious things. This is the approach taken in Israel, they say, and, of course, amounts to profiling, a monstrous no-no in this country, lest someone be offended.

Of course, in Israel there are only 7.5 million folks (less than the population of New York City) compared to 310 million in this country, so how long would it take to have a friendly conversation with all those U.S. travelers to determine if they’re carrying explosives in baby-feeding bottles? The current methods will be modified but it needs remembering that those elitists who are caterwauling are also not responsible for a single human life. If methods were relaxed and a plane was blown-up, they would be just as quick to condemn the TSA for not doing its job.

The alternative to the naysayers is simply to take the bus or the train, although both are currently far more susceptible to sabotage than the airlines since there are no safeguards at all in place for their operations. The brutal fact is that attempting to deal with uncivilized people can be done successfully only by fighting them on their own turf. This is the reason there are wars. Hitler and his gang were brutes and could be brought down only by commensurate brutality at the cost of millions of lives.

The Muslim jihadists are monsters for whom the cowardly killing of innocent life is the weapon of choice. It doesn’t even matter to them if fellow Muslims are the victims. Terror, not armed conflict, is their tactical approach to warfare. Israel is a nation today only because it fights terror with retribution by its military, with the hope that civilians don’t get hurt in the process. The Muslims have no such qualms. For them, blood is blood, no matter whose.

The Muslims see the U.S. as one big patsy. Sheik Khalid, mastermind of 9/11 and probable beheader of Daniel Pearl, has been imprisoned at Gitmo for years, has pled guilty and has asked to be executed. The response by the administration was to bring the butcher to New York and try him in whatever kind of court could be contrived/convened. Even to imagine such a disastrous proposition boggles the mind.

The Muslims look at this and seem to realize that in time their way will win. Miranda Rights are a ridiculous laughing matter with them. Khalid should have joined the promised virgins long ago but reckoned, when he found out about the now-failed New York plan, that he wasn’t so guilty, after all, and is looking forward to spreading his manure before the public in a trial. He was educated in this country so his English is quite good enough for spreading the vitriol.

Before he took office, Obama boasted that he would take on the Pakistanis if they were lax in ferreting out the Taliban and al Qaeda butchers. They’ve been quite lax but the president wouldn’t dream of such a thing, another indication to the Muslims that the U.S. lacks the will to get in the trenches and fight, whereas neither Bush in their presidencies held back. Instead, Obama and Holder are concerned about water-boarding, which neither injures nor kills but forced Khalid to start singing.

One would hope that in the back-channels of diplomacy the word has gone out that the U.S. will adopt an eye-for-an-eye, tooth-for-a-tooth policy in the event of further terrorist attacks or attempts at same…sort of trading the WTC for the tallest building in a specified Muslim city. That might get the attention of the rogue-state dictators and the ayatollahs. It worked with Qaddafi, first with Reagan, then with George Bush, whose invasion of Iraq convinced the Libyan honcho to get out of the nuclear-bomb business altogether. Like the use of the a-bombs that ended WWII, this policy would save lives in the far long term.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Schoolteacher & Water-boarding!

In an op-ed column in the Lexington Herald-Leader, Lexington, Ky., of 20 November, Roger Guffey, a retired high-school math-teacher, condemned President Bush for water-boarding three terrorists, claiming that water-boarding is torture, a no-no in a Christian nation, Guffey’s accurate non-definition of this country, simply a nation in which millions of its citizens claim to be Christians.

Strangely, Guffey used as an example of torture the depiction of Christ’s treatment in the movie The Passion of the Christ. He attempted to compare this with water-boarding and, citing scripture, declared that it produced nothing from Christ since Christ, representing no government or military power, did not furnish any useful information, though no questions amounting to any sort of strategy or national defense were asked him because he was consequently and absolutely no threat and not even handled clandestinely. Rather, he was simply beaten and berated in public, hardly a water-boarding chamber.

Actually, Christ was a slave in the Roman Empire and by virtue of his ability to command a following was to be exterminated. Ironically, Pilate, the Roman head honcho, was perfectly willing to let Christ go on his way, proving that Christ offered no civil threat and certainly did not deserve torture. The religious establishment was out to get Christ, however, considering his brand of the faith as threatening to the religious hierarchy’s power, and Pilate, not caring one way or the other, aided and abetted in letting the torture and crucifixion be carried out…anything to keep the religious zealots happy, off his back and out of his sight.

In the Merriam-Webster Collegiate, 11th Edition, torture is defined thusly: to cause intense suffering to: to punish or coerce by inflicting excruciating pain: to twist or wrench out of shape. Water-boarding neither injures nor kills nor wrenches anybody out of shape and is therefore not torture. Guffey mentioned that Sheik Khalid Mohammed was water-boarded 183 times, but the man has been routinely in the news for years, complete with his picture and has never shown any sign of either being hurt, twisted out of shape or, obviously, killed. Guffey said the water-boarding didn’t work but the truth is that the Sheik, after enduring the water-boarding until he got tired of it, coughed up valuable information, well documented in the media. Water-boarding is also employed in the training of segments of the U.S. military but it’s doubtful that Guffey would accuse the government of torturing its own.

Guffey predictably attempted to use the scriptures to make his point, but did not mention that Jesus Christ made a whip with his own hands and at least on one occasion lashed a group of people with it, driving them out of the temple. Would Guffey, a self-confessed Christian, consider that to be torture? No wonder the Pharisees (religionists) wanted to get rid of Jesus…he was messing up their game! Nor did Guffey mention that Christ, shortly before he died, instructed his followers to secure swords even if having to sell part of their clothes was necessary in order to get the cash. It’s doubtful that he meant for them to use the swords as toothpicks.

The test of Guffey’s position would come, of course, when Guffey would have to decide whether or not to water-board a terrorist known to have vital information concerning the safety (or imminent death) of Guffey’s family. Especially considering the fact that water-boarding neither injures nor kills, what would he do? Indeed, even if water-boarding were torture, what would he do? This corner has no problem with that answer, just as George Bush has stated he would have no problem if faced with the same circumstances regarding the nation’s safety again. In a perfect world (Guffey’s world?), this would not be the case but this world ain’t Camelot, not by a long shot.

If Guffey would not water-board in order to protect his own wife or children or siblings or parents, he says more about himself than about water-boarding, the government or most anything else.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Thursday, November 18, 2010

DNC Memorandum #20

From the office of Tim Kaine, chairman, 17 November 2010

***Please be advised that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has declared that the democrats won hugely in the elections, and the wag who posted a note on the bulletin board insisting she meant a Pyrrhic Victory of losing only 60-65 seats will be disciplined as soon as he/she is discovered. That kind of victory belongs to the republicans since they picked up too few Senate seats to govern. Pelosi has been elected to the minority leadership in the new Congress and this ensures that the president’s program will be furthered, albeit through propagandizing rather than through substance. Pelosi has made it plain that losing the most seats in an election since 1948 (or 1932, who’s counting?) is actually a tremendous win since democrats now have the opportunity to blame republicans for every bad thing that happens, in the same vein as the president in blaming Bush for all his troubles, even the accusation of racism when he accused that white policeman of acting stupidly.

***It has come to my attention that there has been snickering around the bottled-water keg and non-trans-fat, non-hamburger (eating grease okay if Senator Biden does), non-hotdog, non-dairy-product-of-any-kind, non-chocolate, non-smoking (smoking okay if Obama lights up), veggie-fortified, yogurt-enhanced snack-bar and body-mass-chart, carbon-cap-graph, endangered-species-obituary-wall-chart, blue/red-state-map, and Bush/BP/Limbaugh-dartboard to the effect that the appointing of Congressman Clyburn to the new position of Assistant House Leader amounts to condescending patronage. Speaker Peloisi has explained that administering democrats is too heavy a burden for just two new people, her and new Whip Hoyer (though neither one is new – little joke there), and that Clyburn will have specific duties, though no one has thought of them yet. Consequently, it’s been requested of the DNC that a red/yellow/black/white-paper (diversity neutral) be prepared outlining what those duties should be, aside from riding in a chauffeur-driven limo and cadging a huge raise in salary. The wag who pasted Rush Limbaugh’s picture entitled, “Driving Ms. Nancy,” on the bulletin board will be fired or sent to the Durbin Reeducation Camp for proper discipline.

***Regarding the above mentioned matter, the rumor that a special appeal by the Amalgamated Union of Rappers to SCOTUS Judge Sotomayor for an order making Clyburn instead of Pelosi the Minority Leader is untrue, notwithstanding Justice Sotomayor’s ruling a while back that African-American firemen are superior to white firemen in Connecticut because they are black. The reason is obvious, to wit, that fighting fires is not to be compared to fighting republicans. The rumor that Justice Sotomayor, for the same reason, is also working on impeachment proceedings for all the white men on the SCOTUS to be replaced by a group nominated by Al Sharpton is untrue and Sotomayor has promised not to do this again.

*** Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos recently publicly expressed disapproval of the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” notwithstanding that the House has voted for repeal, though the Senate has been too chicken to do so. An offshoot organization of the recently discombobulated community organization known as ACORN (formerly represented by Obama), something called NUTCASE (National Utility Tasking Corps for Amenities/Sensitivities in Eroticism), is asking the DNC for volunteers to carry petitions calling for Amos to be cashiered out of the Marines dishonorably, stripped of his rank and pension, and court-martialed for insubordination, since he has publicly defied the Commander-in-Chief, who is an expert on everything military, his main qualification being that he has never been in the military. Volunteers will be rewarded with time-off (a trip to San Francisco for an orgy or three) for this important activity but may not wear rings in either ear while canvassing.

***Planning is in the initial stage for seminars tentatively entitled “How to Succeed in Washington” to be conducted by a select group of Senators and Representatives. The average per capita personal wealth of House members is now $765,010, while that of senators has grown to $2.38 million, making these people experts in how to succeed doing the nation’s business. Congressman Rangel was originally scheduled to head this activity but for reasons noted recently in the media has bowed out, although his commission for carrying out this difficult task was rumored to be a cool $1.5 million and some of the solons thought that looked bad in the current economy. George Soros, who is funding this vital activity while attempting to drive the dollar out of existence, has suggested that Rangel be replaced by Treasury Secretary Geithner, an expert on working the system, as indicated by his proven ability to dodge paying taxes. Only a select group of staffers will be allowed to participate and will be required to submit essays for eligibility based on the subject “From DNC Staffer to Millionaire” in 25 words or less.

***The president has approved of scanners and enhanced pat-downs at airports at least if and/or until the SCOTUS rules these activities un-constitutional. If such a ruling comes down, the president will discharge an executive order continuing the same. This is in line with the administration’s position that the Constitution is old-fashioned, antiquated, anachronistic, age-challenged, and altogether antagonistic, thus in bad need of adjustment, especially in the area of alien arrangements for amnesty. A commission is being impaneled to study this matter, headed by William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn of Weather Underground, Pentagon-bombing, and cop-killing fame. A special unit is being set up at Guantanamo for instructions in enhanced pat-downs. Any staffer with anything to hide (STDs rumored to be scan-discoverable) is advised to travel by car, train, or whatever cycle/scooter/skateboard is available.

***Most of the banks bailed-out by 800 billion tax-dollars in 2008 paid off their “loans” in a matter of months but staffers are not to make much of this since it tends to prove that the banks were never in trouble in the first place. Also, do not mention that the Wall Street gang is getting even larger bonuses and “golden parachutes” than it cadged before the financial emergency. In this vein, red/yellow/black/white papers are invited regarding the manufacturing of emergencies, which the president agreed with former Staff-chief Emanuel should never be wasted. In other words…the more emergencies the merrier! The president’s friends in big-business love this and those friends contribute to campaigns like mad.

***Under NO circumstances, mention the position of top-democrat propagandist Nobelist Paul Krugman as expressed to a talking-head the other day that the economic/deficit situation will be settled by a combination of death panels and raising taxes. While this is true, most Americans will not like this idea, especially the old codgers who haven’t the decency to make the point moot, in the first place.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Monday, November 15, 2010

Nanny & the WARNINGS!

The newly proposed health-warnings for placement on cigarette-pack wrappers were as predictable as night-following-day and vice versa. The purpose is to stop young people from even being tempted to smoke. Teenagers being what they are, the warnings will most likely encourage them to light up for the first time, just for the heck of it. One can tell the average teenager not to do something but had better not hold his breath.

Perhaps pictures of blackened, cancerous lungs or even of corpses with cigarettes dangling from their mouths will be used since written warnings have been on cigarette packs since 1965, when they were mandated by Congress. The solons didn’t get around to making the whiskey crowd do the same thing until 1988 but that’s another story. Maybe pictures of people vomiting on themselves and others or pictures of crashed automobiles with blood rolling off the dashboards could be placed on the bubbly-labels, but don’t count on it.

This is not a brief for either smoking or drinking, both of which are bad, the latter worse than the former, just a remarking of the nanny-state, epitomized perhaps in Obama’s “Regulator Czar,” Cass Sunstein, the former Harvard Law professor known for his argument that animals should be entitled to lawyers. After all, shouldn’t a dog be able to sue his “partner” (“master” is so politically incorrect) for some sort of abuse or other – maybe the cheap dog-food instead of the best.

The folks who run San Francisco (where else?) have just clamped down on McDonald’s and legislated when and how (enacted salt measurement, for instance) McDonald’s may furnish a toy in the kids’ meals. The solons in New York have decided that salt intake for its citizens must be legislated, else the citizen-morons will either shorten their lives (preferable according to Obamacare death panels) or become a nuisance health expense for the city as they dry up their blood.

Perhaps a Big Mac wrapper should have a picture of an obese person having a heart attack or even (gasp) giving up the ghost right there in the middle of the restaurant, with the caption One Too Many, Bozo!. Maybe a car dealership should have a picture on its compact-car advertisement showing an eighteen-wheeler on top of a pancake-thin piece of twisted metal, with a ghost arising from the wreckage.

Perhaps a bottle of Jack Daniels should have a skull-and-crossbones on its label pictured atop a creature in a straitjacket slobbering “Just one more for the road, Jack!” Or, maybe an egg-carton in the grocery should sport a picture of a tombstone with the inscription R.I.P. – E Coli!. Doesn’t just about everything eaten or done carry a certain amount of risk…and isn’t ol’ Uncle Sam supposed to protect all citizens…from even themselves?

Airplane ventilation systems that mix inside and outside air constantly are said to sometimes be full of every germ imaginable…especially those big-time bacteria/viruses from countries where sanitation is not a big deal. Should an airport sign at the departure point suggest using careful breathing patterns and an on-board presentation include directions on how to breathe safely as well as how to operate the oxygen masks and emergency procedures? Maybe operating-room masks should be made available for the faint of heart.

Tobacco smoke is a part of the atmosphere (although an infinitesimally small part) in most towns and cities. Perhaps a sign should be placed at the City Limits warning everyone who enters that “This is not a smoke-free zone…be warned.” The exhaust from one 18-wheeler passing through the town would leave more carcinogens in the air than about a hundred trillion cigarettes/cigars but that’s beside the point. Nanny must do her job.

This is not to say that the powers-that-be should not be concerned with the welfare of the citizens. It IS to say that government’s job is to EDUCATE the public, and it does rather well discharging this responsibility already. Add in the media and one might conclude that only those with brains made of marbles are not already aware of good health habits.

It’s when government, after doing all it can to be educationally responsible, steps into a citizen’s life to actually run it with regard even to what the citizen may eat or what kind of car he must drive or how warm/cold he may keep his house that the last straw has been expended. Perhaps Nobel Prize-winner Paul Krugman of New York Times notoriety put his finger on the culmination of the nanny-state on a talking-head program the other day when he mentioned the final analysis – death panels and taxes.

Well…there’s nothing more certain than death and taxes, so maybe he had a point…just let the government decide who does what, how much, when, and where…and the devil take the hindmost! In the meantime, kids…oh, never mind!

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Nanny Rides Again!

The nanny-state has been gearing-up for some time now, mandating all kinds of ways to protect the citizens from themselves. The republicans will take control of the House in January but the likelihood that this circumstance will change is remote. Citizens are simply too emotionally-, mentally-, and (gasp) willfully-challenged to guard themselves from harm to be allowed to function normally, so the elitists have to govern every facet of their existence, right down to the amount and kind of calories consumed to the proper setting for their coffee-makers to their proper body-weight/mass to the proper kind of automobiles they drive.

The current Administration/Congress is, if anything, even more determined to run everyone’s life. Folks need to have their contribution of CO2 to the atmosphere monitored, though one wonders what to do if someone is found to be exhaling too much or too often; or have trees that are not extracting enough of it from the air; or avoid stirring up the waters of the streams and seas, from which most of the CO2 derives. Health-care is a problem for folks, especially for those who prefer to select their own lifestyles, doctors, hospitals, treatments, insurance. The nanny-state has enacted the proper legislation to ensure that no one is allowed to wander from the live-forever-and-be-happy plantation of the Administration.

Private enterprise must be un-privatized, the better for the state to determine what can be made and when, where, and how. The president checked recently on the American work-force in India, where many jobs have been outsourced from the USA. Apparently, the Indian government does not determine wages, levels of education and background for those workers. Outsourcing has been going on for years under the republicans, democrats, labor unions, management and Congress – driven by greed and regulations – as the nanny-state has slowly expanded until now practically nothing is made in this country and workers are walking the streets.

Banks and manufacturing have been taken over – GM, Chrysler, Freddie, Fanny, AIG, for instance. “Clunker cars” were removed from the streets as nanny helped folks buy the proper cars. Whether they like it or not, folks wear seat-belts, although those riding motorcycles, buses, or in the beds of pickups don’t have to do this. No one is allowed to take a chance on hurting himself. Parents are facing lawsuits if they discipline their children in ways the elite has determined to be wrong. Predictably, the jails/penitentiaries are filled to overflowing.

The latest example of the nanny-state gone amok is found in (where else?) San Francisco. The city fathers/mothers/cross-dressers/trans-genders have decided that McDonald’s is evil in that it entices children to eat “happy meals” by including toys in the packages, something that has been going on for decades. In this writer’s experience in the 1930s, the going thing was the “Guess What” that included a trinket with two pieces of chewy candy (not even to mention Crackerjacks) that was certain to cause unlimited tooth decay with unlimited ecstasy.

Of course, the toys can still be included if McDonald’s accepts the elite’s abridged menu mandating how much salt, calories, and fat (the good stuff) are utilized along with a side item of fruit or vegetable. One can just imagine a “Little Mac” garnished with broccoli or spinach. Parents are incapable in the nanny-state of handling something as important as food…naw, those crazies might even like “happy meals” themselves. One wonders when San Francisco will come down on the pizza-makers, with all that cheese and those little sausages. Can anyone imagine a pizza with a topping of pineapple or kiwis?

Okay…McDonald’s will just leave out the toys but probably not lower the prices so there’s management happiness all around and the food-giant doesn’t have to take any of the blame for being party-poopers. Of course, there’s an ominous development in New York, where Mayor Bloomberg has declared war on salt, or at least salt-intake. The word has gone out that New Yorkers pose a health-risk (and terrible health-costs) by eating too much salt. This writer remembers that on U.S. Navy ships back in the 1940s there were salt-tablet-dispensers by the scuttlebutts (water-fountains), but that was in the Dark Ages when people walked occasionally or even picked up heavy objects.

The mayor worries about salt when the traffic on just one block in Times Square emits enough CO2 and whatever else is designed to kill people to keep raising the life-span of folks – folks simply killing themselves by invading the sidewalk and living longer. In the writer’s (non-smoker’s) town of Lexington, Ky. (300,000 or so souls), smokers are banished to the sidewalks (to stand by semis roaring by and filling the air with tons of whatever is killing everybody) to take a few virtually imperceptible drags, although they may still do so on some properties, though standing on vulnerable grass is bad. This is no brief for smoking…but disallowed in the open air?

Admittedly, obesity, smoking, jay-walking, driving too fast, are all bad but shouldn’t folks be allowed to notice all the information that’s out there (there’s plenty of it) and then decide how they want to live? The elitists don’t think so. They don’t trust the hoi polloi to take care of themselves, another way of saying – DUMBELLS! Never has this been more evident than now, with an administration that seems hell-bent upon configuring every facet of a citizen’s life. Stinks!

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Saturday, November 06, 2010

John, Hillary & Al

It’s midnight and Senator John Kerry has set up a conference call with State Secretary Clinton and Planet-savior Al Gore, hereinafter referenced as K, C, and G, respectively if not respectfully.

**K: Hi, you two…just thinking last Monday, or maybe it was day before yesterday or maybe it was last evening when Teresa and I were dining by candlelight…I always get brilliant ideas in candlelight – so much like Olde Europe – or maybe it…
**C: Stuff it, John, just like you were for the war before you were against it and…hey, do you know what time it is here? This better be good.
**G: Yeah…I’m right in the middle of a…just a little to the right there, sweetie…ah, that’s better…
**K: Another massage session there, Al? Better watch it, those masseuses sometimes have loose lips that sink more than ships. You oughtta know!
**C: How disgusting! Before I hang up, John, you’d better tell us what…
**K: I was just thinking that since the elections turned the whole country between glorious New England and that heathen land known as California totally republican that we’d better map out a strategy for 2012 – all those governors and state legislatures turning red and the U.S. House even redder – or else we’ll…
**C: meaning that you’re thinking of another try at the brass ring…is that it, John?
**G: Oh…I get it, too, John…little to the left there, Moon-girl…ah…so you’ve got another campaign on your mind and you expect us to help out with our corner on gravitas, like the mainstreamers claimed for that ogre Cheney. Is that it, John? The Big O’s outta the country checking on all the new American jobs he’s created in India and you’re…perish the thought…not back-stabbing him. Hoo-Hah!
**K: No, nothing so crass as that, although your suggestion that I run might be…and STOP laughing!
**G: I made no such suggestion…oh, sorry, sweetheart, I didn’t mean to jump up and throw you against the wall. See what you did, John…shocked me into inconvenient-mode, and that’s the truth.
**C: Well…I hope you didn’t mean what Al just pointed out, John.
**K: Apologies all around, Hillary, big Al. I’m just suggesting that we have a big-time loser on our hands now and we need to…anyway, Hillary, you already said in two or three places overseas that you have no designs on 2012 or 2016, either one.
**C: Well… that was overseas as you mention, John. I haven’t made that statement on Larry King Live, which means it’s not official, just for Malaysian consumption. Nobody in Hoboken or Peoria knows where Malaysia is.
**G: Better watch it there, Hill. That sounds awful racist…lotsa ethnics in Hoboken and Peoria!
**C: Sheesh, Al. YOU don’t know where Malaysia is, either, because there are no polar bears there. I’m just saying that I’m open to being called by my country to make a sacrifice.
**G: Like I’m not, huh? Is that it? Like I’m…ah…much better there…now, dearie, move to the other…
**K: Look, Hillary, I was just taking you at your word. And Al…old friend Al, surely you can’t leave your work at saving the planet…haven’t I conned Lindsey Graham into helping me on the cap-and-trade stuff…your stuff, Al. Surely you see my loyalty to the cause in that.
**C: The cause! What cause? This manmade-climate-change stuff is being ripped apart every day and…
**G: But, Hill, you’ve been in my corner all along…even started making out in the financial end and…
**C: Of course I’m all for that stuff. Ya gotta be…in this day and age with all the Nader-nutcases joining you in the sky-is-falling scare, but people are beginning to catch on. I mean the little people…the little ignoramuses who vote.
**K: Say, Hillary, did you put that New Zealand honcho up to introducing you as PRESIDENT Clinton at your speech in New Zealand the other day? Was that a shot across the bow of the Big O? Or was that a shot? WOW! What nerve! Gotta hand it to you!
**C: Of course not, John. You think I’m that dumb? He was just that dumb, not me.
**G: But it has a nice ring, huh, Hill…a nice ring?
**C: Look, I’m still trying to collect the multi-millions I loaned to my campaign in 2008. It’s hard, what with everyone telling me a State Secretary is small stuff compared to buying a senator or a congressman. Besides that, Bill’s trying to reinterpret the Constitution so he can run again!
**K: Well, we gotta get together on at least one thing or we’re down the drain. It’s Goldfein…he’s making waves about making the run. You saw how he dodged the Big O’s visit to Wisconsin the other day and…
**G: Yeah, but it did him no good…he lost to that Johnson guy anyway…rolled the dice and lost.
**C: It’s Feingold, John, not Goldfein. Sheesh…you’re in the Senate with him everyday and you can’t get his name right? No wonder you lost to the cowboy! Hoo-Hah…both of you lost to the cowboy.
**K: I’ve always had trouble with those Jewish names, seems like they’re always backwards, and I didn’t lose…I never lose or fall off my skis…I just didn’t have enough votes.
**G: He’s the guy to watch all right…ouch…careful there…little farther up…a-a-h-h-h…watch it, John, that sounded awfully politically incorrect…that’s better…o-o-h-h-h…anyway, you’re part Jewish yourself, huh, John, so you oughtta know better.
**C: Russ could be dangerous. Remember how he frothed at the mouth during the Roberts and Alito hearings. I even heard that he and Biden and Schumer were caught baying at the moon one night. He’s got a lot going for him, but old turncoat Arlen was the chairman of that committee, not him. He picked up a lot of support in that hearing, snapping off his questions like a drill sergeant.
**K: Yeah…small problem, though. None of them knew what Roberts was talking about. They’d all been in the Senate so long campaigning 24/7 that they’d never heard of the precedents and didn’t know anything to say but “stare decisis,” no matter what Roberts or Alito said.
**C: Look, I’m on Air Force something-or-other and have no idea where I am but I gotta get some sleep, John, so you and Al argue over which one of you will challenge me. In the meantime, Al, never conduct business during a massage since your grunts are worse than the huge sighs you made in that debate with the cowboy in 2000. Hoo-Hah!!! (click)
**K: You interested in a deal, Al?
**G: Naw…I’m still trying to explain to the world…ouch, little sunburn there…why I left the limousine motor running during my entire speech in some country-or-other the other night to keep the car warm. Tried blaming it on the chauffeur but those Europeans stick together…measured all the carbon I put in the air and printed it in the newspapers. This is a tough old world, John, when a guy can’t stay warm…goodnight. (click)
**K: Now…where did I leave that Nader phone number? (click)

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Oligarchy or Term-Limits?

The pundits and media-types have had a field day dissecting the election results of 02 November. Reasons have ranged all the way from the ridiculous to the sublime with respect to the cataclysm in the House, throwing support to the democrats, and the very modest gains in the Senate, still controlled by the democrats, but barely, and not actually at all when considering the Senate’s strange filibuster rule. In any case, the president’s veto power is perhaps the element that is most domineering.

Public rage has been an operative term in the whole mess – folks tired of what they consider business as usual, generated and maintained primarily by various self-interests, frequently via corruption of one kind or another. Jobs-lack has been accounted as a primary concern, the blame for the high unemployment rate placed squarely on the shoulders of the president and the democrat-controlled houses, and largely justifiably so, especially since the big winners in the Obama administration have been the Wall Street gangsters and not the “little people.” Obama, a multi-millionaire himself, has surrounded himself with Wall Streeters and academic economists, not realists. Voters resent this and the vote showed it.

Climate-change-control has been a constant drumbeat by Obama and the so-called progressives, with the ultimate demanding of a cap/trade global fiasco at a time when the Europeans, who have tried this, are running away from it as fast as possible. Significantly, however, the man-in-the-street has become aware of the gigantic fraud connected with manmade-global-warming claims or manmade-anything else, thus making this issue a non-issue and blaming the powers-that-be for the enormous lies connected to it. The current house democrats passed that infamous cap/trade bill last year – without reading it, of course – and John Q. Public resents being made a fool of. The vote shows this.

Perhaps the main reason for the political tsunami, however, may simply be more philosophical than anything else. Most folks understand the nation to be a republic operated by democratic means, with the people making the decisions, albeit mostly through elections in which they find success or betrayal. What they’ve seen since Obama’s inauguration, however, has been a relentless effort to change the government into an oligarchy, a government not by the many but by the few. This recognition has been enhanced as they’ve watched the Congress – actually the democrats – become a willing tool, not even bothering to read the legislation they pass, simply a collective rubber-stamp for the chief oligarch, the president, operating through Reid and Pelosi. This small band constitutes the oligarchy. Hopefully, that’s changing.

This oligarchic approach was obvious from the get-go as the media reported each day on the identities of the new “czars,” a small group of people merely “hired” by the president to carry out his mandates. Though often operating with more power than cabinet heads, they were exposed to no vetting by the appropriate Congressional committees, though with the democrats holding a sizeable majority they wouldn’t have had to worry anyway…just automatically joining the Congressional democrats in becoming part of the oligarchy.

There was the czar appointed to oversee the car industry, as if there was not a transportation secretary. There have been czars appointed to oversee economics, drugs, Afghanistan/Pakistan, Israel/Palestine, AIDS, “Green jobs” (Van Jones banished quickly because of being a communist), Guantanamo closure…you name it…a czar for just about everything and a czar to oversee the czars, none of these people accountable to anyone but the president. That’s a bureaucratic oligarchy. There are cabinet secretaries responsible for all of those things but they have to go through the confirmation process, ergo, just bypass them, a hundred times easier and faster.

In the right atmosphere, judges become part of the oligarchy, legislating from the bench what the chief oligarch wants, often with decisions directly contravening the laws passed by Congress and flying in the face of the Constitution. Two California judges have recently decided that Congress may not make laws dealing with marriage and homosexuals in the military, so they, with a stroke of the pen, nullified those Congressional enactments. Obama’s first SCOTUS appointee actually had just been overturned by the SCOTUS regarding her decision that ethnicity (or at least the “right” ethnicity) trumped proven ability in the matter of assigning jobs to public employees. The Senate democrats confirmed her. This is oligarchy, and it’s scary.

Perhaps the most effective tool in guarding against oligarchy is term-limits, something selfishly recognized in part by Congress in 1949 when it passed the resolution restricting a president to two terms, ratified in 1951 and now a part of the Constitution. That Congress, with the best opportunity to guard against oligarchy up until then, proved its hypocrisy in not placing term-limits on Congresspersons, thus making politics a career-choice, with those with the greatest seniority actually conducting the nation’s business and once entrenched almost totally un-susceptible to being replaced. Think Byrd, Kennedy, Thurman, Helms, Dingell and a host of others marked by being either smart, unscrupulous or complete nincompoops rising to high places in the oligarchy.

The Congresspersons will never vote themselves out of office, even after a term of 12 years or so, the ideal maximum, and gaining the predictable “golden parachute,” so it will be up to two-thirds of the state legislatures to force that proposition, also not likely to happen. So…the alternative must be used as it was during the recent election, to wit, vote the bums out of office…and keep doing it.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark