T   P   O
The Patient Ox (aka Hénock Gugsa)

G r e e t i n g s !

** TPO **
an irreligious blog
with egalitarian and individualist tendencies!

On the menu ... politics, music, poetry, and other good stuff.
There is humor, but there is blunt seriousness here as well!

Parfois, on parle français ici aussi. Soyez bienvenus!

Intelligent comments are always welcome!

Friday, August 31, 2012

When Cruelty Is Cute - by Maureen Dowd

When Cruelty Is Cute
By Maureen Dowd *

I’d been wondering how long it would take Republicans to realize that Paul Ryan is their guy.

He’s the cutest package that cruelty ever came in. He has a winning air of sad cheerfulness. He’s affable, clean cut and really cut, with the Irish altar-boy widow’s peak and droopy, winsome blue eyes and unashamed sentimentality.

Who better to rain misery upon the heads of millions of Americans?

He’s Scrooge disguised as a Pickwick, an ideologue disguised as a wonk. Not since Ronald Reagan tried to cut the budget by categorizing ketchup and relish as vegetables has the G.O.P. managed to find such an attractive vessel to mask harsh policies with a smiling face.

The Young Gun and former prom king is a fan of deer hunting, catfish noodling, heavy metal and Beethoven. He’s a great dad who says the cheese, bratwurst and beer of Wisconsin flow in his veins. He’s so easy to like — except that his politics are just a teensy bit heartless.

Rush Limbaugh hails Ryan as “the last Boy Scout,” noting that the tall, slender 42-year-old is a true believer: “We now have somebody on the ticket who’s us.”

For the rest of us, at least, Ryan is not going to raise our hopes only to dash them. Unlike W., he’s not even going to make a feint at “compassionate conservatism.” Why bother with some silly scruple or toehold of conscience?

Unlike some of the right-wing ayatollahs, Ryan doesn’t threaten with moral and cultural gusts of sulfur. He seems more like a friendly guidance counselor who wants to teach us how to live, get us in shape, PowerPoint away the social safety net to make the less advantaged more self-reliant, as he makes the rich richer. Burning the village it takes to save it, so we can avoid the fiscal cliff, or as he and his fellow conservative Cassandras ominously call it, “the debt bomb.”

Like Mitt Romney, Ryan truly believes he made it on his own, so everyone else can, too. He shrugs off the advantage of starting as the white guy from an affluent family, able to breeze into a summer internship for a Wisconsin Republican senator as a college student.

Only 16 and the youngest of four when he discovered his lawyer dad dead in bed from a heart attack at 55, Ryan had to grow up fast.

The Midwestern kid was guided by what David Stockman calls “Irving Kristol’s ex-Trotskyites” turned neo-cons; Jack Kemp, the cheery supply-sider who actually cared about the disadvantaged, and by one of Kemp’s favorite authors, Russian émigré and cult leader Ayn (pronounced like swine, as she used to say) Rand.

“And the fight we are in here, make no mistake about it, is a fight of individualism versus collectivism,” Ryan said in a 2005 speech to the Atlas Society. He even gave copies of “Atlas Shrugged” to staffers at Christmas. He did not emulate Rand on everything, given that she adamantly opposed Ronald Reagan, saying, “Since he denies the right to abortion, he cannot be a defender of any rights.”

Ryan co-sponsored the Sanctity of Life Act enshrining a fertilized egg with the definition of “personhood” and supported a bill Democrats nicknamed the “Let Women Die Act,” which would have let hospitals that get federal money deny women abortions even in life-threatening circumstances.

And Rand would not have approved of Ryan’s votes in the House backing W.’s profligate spending on unwinnable wars, a bank bailout and a Medicare expansion. She would no doubt have been thrilled, however, that under the Ryan budget plan, the megarich Romney would go from paying shamefully as little as possible in taxes to virtually no taxes.

Ryan was drawn to Rand’s novels, with their rejection of “the altruist morality,” making narcissism a social virtue; her exhortation that man must not only strive for “physical values” — her heroes were hot — and self-made wealth, but a “self-made soul.” Like John Galt, who traces a dollar sign “over the desolate earth” at the end of “Atlas Shrugged,” Rand idolized the dollar. She wore a brooch shaped like a dollar sign, and a 6-foot dollar sign stood beside her coffin at her wake.

Although the Catholic Ryan told Fox News’s Brit Hume in an interview that aired Tuesday night that he “completely disagreed” with Rand’s “atheistic philosophy,” he said his interest in economics was “triggered” by her.

His long infatuation with her makes him seem even younger than he looks with his cowlick because Randism is a state of arrested adolescence, making its disciples feel like heroic teenagers atop a lofty mountain peak.

The secretive, ambiguous Romney was desperate for ideological clarity, so he outsourced his political identity to Ryan, a numbers guy whose numbers don’t add up.

This just proves that Romney will never get over his anxiety about not being conservative enough. As president, he’d still feel the need to prove himself with right-wing Supreme Court picks.

Ryan should stop being so lovable. People who intend to hurt other people should wipe the smile off their faces.

* New York Times / OP ED / August 14, 2012  

Maureen Dowd

Thursday, August 30, 2012

"Deceive the rainbow ..." - by SKITTLES

"Deceive the rainbow ..."



Lies and Dog Whistles - Michael Tomasky

Convention: Lies and Dog Whistles
by Michael Tomasky
Washington Post / Opinion / Aug 27, 2012
  [ GOP: A party dedicated to five ideas, all reprehensible. ]

Well, here we go. The week has begun in Tampa, report Adele Stan and Peter Montgomery, with Ralph Reed, that great Christian casino gambling enthusiast, rallying the troops, advocating that the fall election be dedicated to "the Lord." This invocation comes in advance of what promises to be a toxic waste dump of hate and lies and race-baiting for the next four days.

Tom Edsall said it without quite saying it this morning in the Times, that this Romney-Ryan campaign is becoming among the most racist we've ever seen. The two key lies so far are totally about race--that Obama is soft on welfare recipients, and that he's "robbing" $716 billion from Medicare (77 percent of recipients are white) to "pay for Obamacare" (that is, to extend health care to black and brown people who don't deserve it, havent earned it, etc.).

Commenter Omegadon asked last week: "Michael: Is there any element of the GOP that you don't consider loathesome?" I've been thinking about this over the weekend. Having trouble coming up with much.

Let me answer this way. I may not have much good to say about today's conservatism and Republican Party, but I do have criticisms of Democrats and contemporary liberalism. As I've written many times over the years, they are too fixated on rights without enough corresponding emphasis on responsibility. But when I say responsibility I mean civic responsibility (behavior in the public sphere) more than personal responsibility (behavior in the private sphere). That is, I mean citizens behaving in a way that nurtures and sustains the common good.

Honest conservatism can be valuable. It can provide that counter-balance. But we don't have honest conservatism today. We have a radical party that is dedicated in essence to three propositions: the financial liberation of the top 2 percent; the need to start more wars as the way to exercise moral authority in the world; and the peddling of oogedy-boogedy nonsense that's a step or two removed from bloodletting and alchemy.

Actually, now that I think about it, it's dedicated to two other propositions, too: the idea that Democrats aren't Americans who have different and worse ideas but are in fact un-American, which leads to this politics as perpetual warfare business; and the idea that black people shouldn't really have the right to vote in the same way white people do.

As I've said many times going back to the Guardian days, I'd be delighted to have a more-or-less honest, moderate-to-conservative Republican Party. Democrats and Republicans could then talk with each other. They could work together on outcomes like structuring a sensible carbon tax, an idea so socialistic and radical that Exxon's CEO supports it. But that isn't what we have.

So no, Omegadon, not much to admire. And as for the rest of your question, the "both sides" part, I've written it dozens of times--sure, the Democrats aren't blameless. They lie sometimes. But it's not part of their portfolio in the same way because their positions, taken one by one, are more popular. To take a timely example, Social Security and Medicare are popular. Majorities want them preserved, and strongly so. Democrats want to preserve them, so they have the benefit of being able to speak the truth on that point.

Republicans, however, have wanted to destroy Social Security since 1935 and Medicare since 1965. But the programs are popular, so they can't say that. Most government programs are in fact fairly popular, so the party that supports those programs just has to say "we support those programs," while the party that's against them has to lie.

We're going to be hearing a lot of those lies this week, and a lot of quasi-racist dog-whistling about how Obama doesn't feel the same way about America as "we" do. So no--still not sure what I should find non-loathsome about that.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

"She's Like a Swallow" - Cara Dillon

Cara Dillon

"She's like a swallow"



Cara Dillon (1975 - )

CARA DILLON -  "She's Like a Swallow"  Lyrics
She's like a swallow that flies so high
Like a river that never runs dry
Like the sunshine on the lee shore
She loves her love and love is no more.

It's out in the meadow this fair maid did go

Picking the lovely primrose
The more she plucked the more she pulled
Until she's got her apron full.

She climbed on yonder hill above

To give a rose unto her love
She gave him one, she gave him three
She gave her heart for company.

And as they sat on yonder hill

His heart grew hard, so harder still
He has two hearts instead of one
She says, young man what have you done?

How foolish, foolish you must be

To think I loved no one but thee
This world's not made for one alone
I take delight in every one.

Ohh she'd fly so high over the shore ...

Ohh she'd fly so high over the shore ...
(???) Ohh no more ....

The Real Romney - David Brooks

The Real Romney
by David Brooks * 

The purpose of the Republican convention is to introduce America to the real Mitt Romney.Fortunately, I have spent hours researching this subject. I can provide you with thedefinitive biography and a unique look into the Byronic soul of the Republican nominee: 
Mitt Romney was born on March 12, 1947, in Ohio, Florida, Michigan, Virginia and several other swing states. He emerged, hair first, believing in America, and especially its national parks. He was given the name Mitt, after the Roman god of mutual funds, and launched into the world with the lofty expectation that he would someday become the Arrow shirt man.

Romney was a precocious and gifted child. He uttered his first words (“I like to fire people”) at age 14 months, made his first gaffe at 15 months and purchased his first nursery school at 24 months. The school, highly leveraged, went under, but Romney made 24 million Jujubes on the deal.

Mitt grew up in a modest family. His father had an auto body shop called the American Motors Corporation, and his mother owned a small piece of land, Brazil. He had several boyhood friends, many of whom owned Nascar franchises, and excelled at school, where his fourth-grade project, “Inspiring Actuaries I Have Known,” was widely admired.

The Romneys had a special family tradition. The most cherished member got to spend road trips on the roof of the car. Mitt spent many happy hours up there, applying face lotion to combat windburn.

The teenage years were more turbulent. He was sent to a private school, where he was saddened to find there are people in America who summer where they winter. He developed a lifelong concern for the second homeless, and organized bake sales with proceeds going to the moderately rich.

Some people say he retreated into himself during these years. He had a pet rock, which ran away from home because it was starved of affection. He bought a mood ring, but it remained permanently transparent. His ability to turn wine into water detracted from his popularity at parties.

There was, frankly, a period of wandering. After hearing Lou Reed’s “Walk on the Wild Side,” Romney decided to leave Mormonism and become Amish. He left the Amish faith because of its ban on hair product, and bounced around before settling back in college. There, he majored in music, rendering Mozart’s entire oeuvre in PowerPoint.

His love affair with Ann Davies, the most impressive part of his life, restored his equilibrium. Always respectful, Mitt and Ann decided to elope with their parents. They went on a trip to Israel, where they tried and failed to introduce the concept of reticence. Romney also went on a mission to France. He spent two years knocking on doors, failing to win a single convert. This was a feat he would replicate during his 2008 presidential bid.

After his mission, he attended Harvard, studying business, law, classics and philosophy, though intellectually his first love was always tax avoidance. After Harvard, he took his jawline to Bain Consulting, a firm with very smart people with excessive personal hygiene. While at Bain, he helped rescue many outstanding companies, like Pan Am, Eastern Airlines, Atari and DeLorean.

Romney was extremely detail oriented in his business life. He once canceled a corporate retreat at which Abba had been hired to play, saying he found the band’s music “too angry.”

Romney is also a passionately devoted family man. After streamlining his wife’s pregnancies down to six months each, Mitt helped Ann raise five perfect sons — Bip, Chip, Rip, Skip and Dip — who married identically tanned wives. Some have said that Romney’s lifestyle is overly privileged, pointing to the fact that he has an elevator for his cars in the garage of his San Diego home. This is not entirely fair. Romney owns many homes without garage elevators and the cars have to take the stairs.

After a successful stint at Bain, Romney was lured away to run the Winter Olympics, the second most Caucasian institution on earth, after the G.O.P. He then decided to run for governor of Massachusetts. His campaign slogan, “Vote Romney: More Impressive Than You’ll Ever Be,” was not a hit, but Romney won the race anyway on an environmental platform, promising to make the state safe for steeplechase.

After his governorship, Romney suffered through a midlife crisis, during which he became a social conservative. This prepared the way for his presidential run. He barely won the 2012 Republican primaries after a grueling nine-month campaign, running unopposed. At the convention, where his Secret Service nickname is Mannequin, Romney will talk about his real-life record: successful business leader, superb family man, effective governor, devoted community leader and prudent decision-maker. If elected, he promises to bring all Americans together and make them feel inferior.

* New York Times / OP-ED / August 27, 2012

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

"The Bare Necessities" - Phil Harris

Phil Harris

The Bare  Necessities *


Phil Harris (1904-1995)

* From the 1967 Walt Disney movie: "The Jungle Book"

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Mormonism /or/ Mitt to Wit ! - by TPO

Mormonism  /or/  Mitt to Wit !

Question: How many Mormons are there in France?

Answer: There are about 36 thousand baptized members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the "Mormon" church) in France. *

* Source: http://wiki.answers.com

Les Mormons de France

By Rod Dreher (April 16, 2012) **

Did you know that France has 36,000 Mormons? I did not. On the train from Paris to Chartres, I met two young Mormon missionaries, and fell into conversation with one who had been in the country only three weeks. Nice guy, straight from Utah, struggling to speak French, but admirably soldiering on. I asked him about his experiences trying to spread his faith among the French. He said so far, they had been mostly positive, though inconclusive in terms of conversions. Most people, he said, simply don’t know what Mormons are, and when they find out, they aren’t really hostile, just distant.

“I make it my mission just to love people and help them,” he told me. “Last week, a group of us got together and cut up a tree that had fallen on somebody’s house. We do service projects like that. If they end up wanting to talk about faith, we’re ready for that. But mostly we just want to serve. That’s how we earn the right to share our faith with them.”

I don’t know if this impressive young man will have any success converting Frenchmen to the LDS faith, but if he does, it will be precisely because he put love and service first, not direct proselytizing.

** source: theamericanconservative.com

Question: Do Mormons have temples in France?

Answer: by Cabal [in Answers.yahoo.com]
(Best Answer - Chosen by Voters)

Mormons do not have temples in France as they are not recognised as a religion but as a sect. They can proletize [sic], very discreetly, but they cannot have a big building with religious symbols and such. They don't have many members in France and never had, their habit to 'convert' dead people by 'baptising' them does not count.

Their numbers were around 34,000 in 2007, 30% of whom are considered practising [sic], for a population of 64 millions French. 10% were foreigners (4.2% Africans) and 22.8% were of foreign origin. [Source(s): Socio-histoire du mormonisme en France (1850-2008)]

In the Sixties (1967, to be exact), Mitt Romney went to France to do Mormon missionary work. He thus was able to avoid being drafted into military service and fighting in the Vietnam war. How did Romney find France ...?

France is [and has for a long time been] historically and culturally Catholic, even if many of its citizens don’t actively practice that faith. For many, changing from the Catholic faith would be giving up family traditions. And Mormonism, with its prohibitions on alcohol, tobacco and caffeine, was a tough sell in a land of red wine, Galois cigarettes and espresso. According to Mulloy Hansen, a fellow missionary, there were perhaps 4,000 Mormons in the whole country at the time.

Conclusion: It has now been 45 years since Romney's missionay days in France. And the number of French Mormons has grown by only 30,000.  Has it all been worth it for Mitt?  Hardly significant, by any standard.  But don't forget ... over 47,000 Americans died in combat in Vietnam tandis que Mitt savourait ses brioches dans des cafés de Paris!


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Caazapá ----> by Agustín Barrios

   Agustín Barrios   
                                               Berta Rojas  
                                                                          (1966- )  

Agustín Barrios'
" Caazapá "
(Performed by)
Berta Rojas

The Riddle of the World - by Alexander Pope

Alexander Pope (1688-1744)

The Riddle of the World
Alexander Pope

Know then thyself, presume not God to scan
The proper study of Mankind is Man.
Placed on this isthmus of a middle state,
A Being darkly wise, and rudely great;
With too much knowledge for the Skeptic side,
With too much weakness for the Stoic's pride,
He hangs between; in doubt to act, or rest;
In doubt to deem himself a God, or Beast;
In doubt his mind and body to prefer;
Born but to die, and reas'ning but to err;
Whether he thinks to little, or too much;
Chaos of Thought and Passion, all confus'd;
Still by himself, abus'd or disabus'd;
Created half to rise and half to fall;
Great Lord of all things, yet a prey to all,
Sole judge of truth, in endless error hurl'd;
The glory, jest and riddle of the world.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Perfect Lawn - by Nana of the North

 Perfect lawn? What is the sense of having all that grass if no one is allowed to be on it?

Bulletin Board, Pioneer Press

Posted:   08/17/2012 12:01:00 AM CDT

Updated:   08/17/2012 09:27:32 PM CDT

Writes Nana of the North: "We have a neighbor who is obsessed with his lawn. He had an underground watering system installed; he fertilizes it every month; he hand-picks the dead leaves that fall on it; he mows it when it grows a quarter of a inch.

"Granted, it is beautiful, but it looks so lonesome.

"When my daughters were little, their father was also obsessed about the lawn. The girls couldn't have a swing set unless it was way out in the back of the lot, and God forbid if sand from the sandbox touched the perfect lawn.

"When I was a child, my father mowed the lawn when it needed it, raked when it needed it, but always wanted us kids to play on it. I have so many wonderful memories of playing on the lawn. I would play I was camping under a blanket thrown over the clotheslines, and playing Annie Annie Over, throwing a ball over the garage roof.

"What is the sense of having all that grass if no one is allowed to be on it? Kinda like putting carpet in a room, then not letting anyone walk on it.

"The grass always grows back, and you can always replace a carpet, but you can never put back memories in the mind of a child who was told: 'Don't play on the grass.' "

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Langue facile?! - TPO

Alors, tout le monde ... parlons français!  


Paul Ryan's Devotion to Ayn Rand - TPO

Reactions to Paul Ryan's Devotion to Ayn Rand
 by Readers of Slate.Com

Mark Russo:

I made the point below, and someone replied, but before I could reply it got buried in other comments. The article says, "Who denies all of a writer's works because some of those works are girded by atheism." Which suggests that the only problem with Rand's philosophy for a Catholic is that it's atheistic. But I would say that Rand's philosophy is antagonistic to Christianity to its core, and it's completely unbelievable that Ryan could quote different speeches from the book as advice for life and still think it was compatible with his Catholicism.

I challenge people like Ryan to name a single sentence that Jesus said that Rand would agree with...
"Blessed are you who are poor, for the kingdom of God is yours."
"Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the land."
"Rather, let the greatest among you be as the youngest, and the leader as the servant."
"But I say to you, offer no resistance to one who is evil. When someone strikes you on your right cheek, turn the other one to him as well. If anyone wants to go to law with you over your tunic, hand him your cloak as well. Should anyone press you into service for one mile, go with him for two miles. Give to the one who asks of you, and do not turn your back on one who wants to borrow."
This is the antithesis of "Atlas Shrugged."
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and give to God what is God's."
(I guess Rand would agree with that if she could take it out of context and interpret that to mean, "Give to Tiberius Caesar his own personal property, and give nothing to non-existent beings." But in context, Jesus was saying, "You use Roman money, so pay Roman taxes, but in all things, you must have complete devotion to God." Rand would have spat on him.)
I guess she would say she agrees with "Do onto others as you would have them do onto you," but she would add the caveat "Unless they're passengers on your train. Then you can murder them with impunity."
How about the apostles, who St. Luke says, "had all things in common. They would sell their property and possessions and divide them among all according to each one’s need." Rand would say they were just giving in to moochers.
Is there a single Catholic saint Rand would not have thought of with contempt? St. Francis of Assisi-giving away his possessions, mooching off of others. St. Joan of Arc, dying for a statist regime. St. Thomas More, who died "the king's good servant but God's first."
Maybe Ryan thinks her political and economic conclusions were right while all of her philosophical and moral premises were wrong? 
(Your run of the mill Christian libertarian, who thinks that we have a duty to private charity but doesn't think that caring for the poor and weak is the proper role of government, is a different story. I'm talking just Ayn Rand's philosophy.)


Then there's Aquinas, who Ryan now claims to prefer over Rand: "Man should not consider his material possession his own, but as common to all, so as to share them without hesitation when others are in need." 

Put that in your pipe, Comrade Paul, and smoke it.


The notion of the rugged individual is very seductive, especially to weak people.



Eat the poor. They'll make more.


Jerome Graber:

The problem with Rand is the problem with most all zealots. She has discovered one small truth that applies to one small aspect of life - in her case, economics - and blows it all out of proportion to try to make it apply to all of life.

· Reply
zztop: Well, Rand's objectivism is concerned with orthodoxy and so are fundamental Christians. I think that's the glue that binds them. The details don't matter as much as the complete devotion to ideology and desire to avoid or discount or oppress any complicating critique by virtue of its unorthodoxy.

· Reply
Jerome Graber: Nah, it's simpler than that, I think. Rand saw the oppression of communism, rightly recognized that private property and free markets are a better way to organize economic life, and then mistook this insight for a universal truth.

But most of life, and the most important parts of life, are not governed by economic principles. My family comes immediately to mind.



[....] The people who gravitate to Ayn Rand are bitter, resentful human beings who are often young and in search of an identity. If you are a guy in his twenties and you feel disaffected and frustrated, and you want more than anything to be patted on the head for looking down on your fellow man, then Ayn Rand is for you.

Now, we have this guy Paul Ryan whose policies embody this mentality. He really, truly wants to turn our society into one in which the rich bear absolutely no responsibility whatsoever for providing the means for the poor to become educated and gainfully employed. This follows naturally from what Mr. Ryan got from Ayn Rand--that the rich are good, productive people, and that the poor are bad, worthless people who deserve no assistance whatsoever. And far from belonging to a fringe element, Paul Ryan is the ideological standard-bearer for the Republican Party and its candidate for vice president.

I don't think we could ever have gotten to this point if we didn't have a black president. The ascension of a guy like Paul Ryan can only happen if poor white people are able to be manipulated into voting for things that are really, truly, diametrically contrary to their interests, as opposed to just somewhat or mildly so. And the way you manipulate poor white people is by telling them that the government is going to take their money and give it to poor black people.  

Cat and eagle discuss vital issues of life.

Friday, August 10, 2012

" I'd Really Love To See You Tonight " - Dan Seals

Dan Seals

"I'd Really Love To See You Tonight"


Dan Seals (1948-2009)


Hello, yeah, it's been a while.
Not much, how 'bout you?
I'm not sure why I called,
I guess I really just wanted to talk to you.
And I was thinking maybe later on,
We could get together for a while.
It's been such a long time,
And I really do miss your smile.

I'm not talking 'bout moving in,
And I don't want to change your life.
There's a warm wind blowin' the stars around,
And I'd really love to see you tonight.

We could go walking through a windy park,
Or take a drive along the beach.
Stay at home and watch t.v.
You see, it really doesn't matter much to me.

I'm not talking 'bout moving in,
And I don't want to change your life.
There's a warm wind blowin' the stars around,
And I'd really love to see you tonight.

I won't ask for promises,
So you don't have to lie.
We've both played that game before,
Say I love you, say goodbye.

I'm not talking 'bout moving in,
And I don't want to change your life.
There's a warm wind blowin' the stars around,
And I'd really love to see you tonight.

I'm not talking 'bout moving in,
And I don't want to change your life.
There's a warm wind blowin' the stars around,
And I'd really love to see you tonight.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

"Dirty Liar ?!" - Slate Readers

graphics by Henock  (click to enlarge)

RNC Chairman Calls Harry Reid a “Dirty Liar” ...

Republicans fired criticism at the Senate majority leader, but he is unlikely to back down on Romney tax claims.

By Cindy Ok, Daniel Politi, and Josh Voorhees | Posted Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012
source:  Slate.com ....
Slate Readers' comments ...


So,prehaps [sic] the pathetic RNC Chairman might want to consider the Whopper of a Big Lie that his own 2012 GOP/Tea Party Presidential Candidate,Bain Capital Vulture Businessman Wimpy Willard Mittens Romney keeps telling over and over about Romney being a "Businessman",when the only thing Willard Mittens Romnney knows about business as a Corporate Raider Punk is how to ship our own American Workers Jobs OVERSEAS to India,Communist China,Mexico & Pakistan after Romney destroyed the American Companies they came from here... And,then Willard Mittens Romney knows how to deposit his ill-gained $250 Million Blood Money Fortune into All Romney's Secret Cayman Islanmds,Bermuda and Swiss Bank Accounts and lie about it and Evade Paying Taxes On It All.

So,need I mention Willard Mitt Romney is also a cowardly Viet Nam War Draft Dodger that fled to France to evade being Drafted and lies about it by saying he was on a Mormon Church Mission.
· Reply

Hmmm, let's see.

Dukakis -- The Willy Horton ads
Clinton -- Does anyone even know what he is *supposed* to have done in Whitewater?
Gore -- One of the most honest men in Congress, so the Repubs intentionally set out to make him seem a liar, via lies like the assertion that he claimed to have invented the Internet
Kerry -- Swift boated
Obama -- That would be the crack-smoking Muslim Communist socialist Kenyan who comports with terrorists

OK, so now the Republicans are in arms because the Dems are finally hitting back?  

Somehow I can no longer care.  

The sad truth is that you have to hit a bully back, or he'll keep hitting you. Obama spent four years making nice to the Republicans, and look at what it bought him. The people who now run that party see that as a sign of weakness. They will behave, but only once you've demonstrated strength.
 · Reply
Gretchen Wallace:

Not just hit him back, but smash him in the face with a trashcan lid, stomp his testicles into a bloody mess, kick his ribs in, and smash the rest of the trashcan down on his head.

Knock him down and keep him down. That's what we need to do the GOP - destroy these sick animals forever.
· Reply

"They will behave, but only once you've demonstrated strength....more"

Hey, that's pretty much neocon foreign policy in a nutshell. Are you sure you want the left adopting that as a political strategy?
· Reply
Mitch Kaplan:

@Cdub, Only for domestic politics.
· Reply

Insert Star Wars "path to the dark side" quote here.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Cell Phone Awareness - by LiveInTheNow.com

New Cell Phone Data

For many years, the wireless industry and certain health officials have contended that cell phones are perfectly harmless. However, in conducting an in-depth analysis of all of the published studies on the matter, researchers publishing in the Journal of Computer Assisted Tomography found that the largest-ever study conducted on the health effects of cell phone use, which found no associated dangers, was largely flawed. Not surprisingly, the study also happened to have been funded by the wireless industry.

The data that researchers pooled from other studies, however, led them to conclude that long-term regular cell phone use can damage DNA and approximately double the risk of developing a brain tumor in the more exposed side of the brain (i.e. the side you usually hold your phone on). The researchers said that their findings indicate a need to develop technologies to reduce electromagnetic field (EMF) exposure and for laws requiring cell phone manufacturers to reduce their devices’ levels of EMF output.

It’s hard to know exactly what to do in light of these disturbing findings. If you’re like many people — even the most health-conscious — throwing out your cell phone is completely out of the question, and even trying to reduce your use seems unfeasible. But if you care about your health, it’s critical that you take steps to reduce your exposure.

Ann Louise Gittleman, author of the book, Zapped: Why Your Cell Phone Shouldn’t Be Your Alarm Clock and 1,268 Other Ways to Outsmart the Hazards of Electronic Pollution, is a firm believer in the dangers of EMFs. In her book, she says, “Invisible pollution surrounds us twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, interrupting our bodies’ natural flow of energy. And for some, that pollution has reached the point of toxicity, causing fatigue, irritability, weakness and even illness.”

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), EMFs have a powerful effect on us because our bodies are regulated by electricity. EMFs can interact with the body’s cardiovascular, digestive and nervous systems and affect them in adverse ways.

In addition to DNA damage and increased risk for cancer, scientific studies have linked EMF exposure to: 

- Chronic inflammation, aches and pains
- Sleep disruptions
- Fatigue
- Depression
- Headaches
- Vision problems
- Nerve damage
- Alzheimer’s and other cognitive problems
- Disturbances in heart rhythm

As it turns out, there are many ways that you can reduce your exposure to the EMF radiation your cell phone emits. Here are some ideas: 

1. Limit the length and number of calls you make. This one is a no-brainer, but was also the study authors’ primary recommendation. You may want to have your cell phone available when traveling or driving in the car, but try to make calls using a landline when at home or at work.

2. Text instead of talking. The researchers also recommended this as a way to keep your phone at a safer distance from your brain.

3. Use an EMF shield. Pong Research makes EMF-deflecting smartphone cases that have been proven in independent laboratories to reduce exposure to electromagnetic radiation by up to 95% below international safety limits. The cases work by redirecting the electromagnetic radiation that would otherwise be absorbed by the user’s head and body with a special antenna system. [....]

4. Try to only use your cell phone in areas where reception is good. You cell phone must use more power (and therefore, emit more EMF radiation) in areas where reception is weak. Do your best to avoid using your phone in areas that have bad reception.

5. Keep your phone as far away from your body as possible. Store it in your bag or purse, rather than in your pocket. Keep it on the other side of the room, or better yet, in another room, when you’re at home or work. Use speaker mode for calls whenever possible.

6. Turn it off! Make it a habit to simply turn your phone off when you’re not actively using it. Especially avoid sleeping with your phone on in the same room. 

Monday, August 6, 2012

Chanson d'Automne - Paul Verlaine

Paul Verlaine (1844-1896)

"Chanson d'Automne"

de Paul Verlaine (1844-1896)

Les sanglots longs
Des violons
De l'automne
Blessent mon coeur
D'une langueur

Tout suffoquant
Et blême quand
Sonne l'heure,
Je me souviens
Des jours anciens
Et je pleure.

Et je m'en vais
Au vent mauvais
Qui m'emporte
Deçà, delà
Pareil à la
Feuille morte.
"Song of Autumn"

Translated by Thomas D. Le

The prolonged sobs
Of the violin
In the autumn
Tear up my heart
With languishing

And listless when
The dread hour strikes
I remember
The days of yore
And I cry.

And I wander
In evil wind
Which carries me
Hither, thither
Like a dead leaf
I would be.