Monday, June 23, 2008

George Carlin: Rest In Spleen

George Carlin died on Sunday. Allow me to flash back for a moment...


The HBO special from which I took my model was last year's Life Is Worth Losing, and the first thing that struck me when I saw it was how tired and (gasp) old Carlin looked as he came on stage. "Well, he was in his 30s when Occupation: Foole came out, so it's about to be expected..."

Then he started in on a 20-30 minute riff on The Suicide Channel, and the years just fell away.

Ska: I just have this image of Carlin, George Burns, Mitch Hedburg and Lenny Bruce telling an Aristocrats joke at the pearly gates while millions of souls look on, horrified
Here's to you, ya bitter old bastard...

Friday, June 20, 2008

We Remain! Pandas Remain!

A lot of horror has emerged from the recent Chinese earthquakes, but a lot of humanity has emerged as well. Graphic artist Coco Wang has set up a cartoon blog called Earthquake Strips to tell the stories emerging from the quake. So many of these are tragic, but I feel compelled to link to one in particular because, come on...pandas. (Thanks BoingBoing)

Once you've read the story, you'll understand what's going on in this picture (courtesy Zhang Xuesong)...

Pandoj en Tertremo

Friday, June 13, 2008

Goodbye, Tim

You can have all your fancy cable news CGI 3D digital geegaws telling you how the election's going. All I needed to know the score on that long, fateful night in the fall of 2000 was Tim Russert's whiteboard. FLORIDA, FLORIDA, FLORIDA.



Godspeed, Tim Russert.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

That's Not The Speech I Would've Made

Before I begin, there's a (very, very large) possibility you don't know how I feel about the way the Clinton campaign has been conducted...being a nonentity as I am will do that for you. If so, you might want to read the previous two entries linked below for context, then come back here for the endgame. (1) (2)

So here's the scene I just saw in the 9 p.m. hour on MSNBC: Terry McAuliffe walked in a room with no TV monitors and no cellphone or Blackberry reception--completely isolated from the outside world, in other words--and, barely 10 minutes after the network made the projection that Obama was the presumptive nominee for the Democratic side thanks to the delegate math and a steady influx of superdelegates, introduced Hillary Clinton as "the next president of the United States". Then, Hillary made an evasive speech where she mentioned at least once that WE WON...something...then plugged her website one more time (because those bills don't go away just because you didn't win, buster) and possibly left her loyal supporters completely in the dark about what happened. It was such a stunningly wrong moment that it left even Keith Olbermann asking what the hell we just saw. I'll wager that the only non-inner-circle people in that room who were clear about what has actually been achieved tonight and by who were the ones standing in front of TV cameras with microphones.

So those loyal footsoldiers, the ones who knocked on doors, ran the phone banks, and even went into hock for Hillary (and yet it was never enough, dammit! COUGHCOUGHhillaryclinton.com) will go home in the arms of certain knowledge and then turn on the TV or pick up the paper and find out they were strung along. And they'll get angry, they'll get depressed...maybe they'll even get drunk, and then possibly they'll swear off the system (or the party) forever. Of course, I base this conclusion on nothing but my overactive imagination, but that doesn't put a kibosh on where I'm going with this: Thank you so goddamn much, Hillary Clinton, for the most disgustingly deceptive moment in the '08 season yet. I'm saying a prayer tonight that the powers-that-be find a way to keep you off the ticket completely.

I may regret the vitriol of the above later, but never the sentiment. Believe it or not, I have ethical standards about dealing with people, and the Clinton camp violated too many of them one time too many tonight.

Oh, and Obama '08. There, I said it...

(Edit @ 4 a.m. (after some reflection): There's a reason the tag says "incoherent rant". And no, I won't really wish Clinton away to the cornfield if that's what it takes for us to get on with it already, but I'm of the type that believes the way a candidate runs their campaign (the procedural stuff more than the promises) gives clues on both their general character and how they would run their hypothetical presidency. It's a pretty simplistic formula--most armchair political analysis is--but it's worked so well in the past, which is why when I apply it to what Sen. Clinton has been up to over the past several months (again, see the previous two posts), it fills me with a quietly rising alarm. Anyway, the fact that I'm backpedaling on that touch of hyperbole should tell you why I don't make a living as a rabid political attack dog. I'm just a soul whose intentions are good. Oh Lord, please don't let me be misunderstood. Terry McAuliffe can still bite my ass, though.)