Saturday, December 31, 2005

New Year's Resolutions

I feel the urge, nay the need, to make some New Year's resolutions. I don't know why. I don't know why. Perhaps, it's because I'm living in a new state and working a new job. Perhaps, it is truly time for new beginnings and an end to old habits. In my life I've always cast off the old when moving, like a worn cloak in need of too many darnings.
Perhaps, too, I am of an age now when one begins to think of death and the fact that I have well and truely passed into the downward arc of my life expectancy. And I look at my accomplishments so far and wonder if I've really done anything worthy of note. I look at my past and wonder how I lived to be this age. I look at my family and friends and wonder what they would have to say as my pall was lowered from shoulders and placed onto the ground awaiting final internment. And I think, "Not enough".
So, with this in mind, I make the following resolutions:
1. From now on I will fire only warning shots from my rifle unless it's being done in self-defense.
2. As of tomorrow I will not drink before noon unless I began the night before.
3. Starting tomorrow, I will show my friends all of the respect I think they are due.
4. From this point on I will no longer leave the blinds open when I masturbate to internet porn.
5. Tonight is the last time I will call George Bush a bitch-ass knob goblin.
6. Tomorrow I will begin calling George Bush many other things.
7. I resolute that next year I will stop obsessing about Sandra Bullock having sex with someone other than me.
8. Be it resolved for 2006 that I will go back to obsessing about Liv Tyler, Uma Thurman, Penelope Cruz, Paz Vega, Samantha Morton, Joan Cusack, Milla Jovovich, Chinese chicks, Audra MacDonald, Bernadette Peters, Laura Dern, and Fay having sex with men other than me.
9. I will never again (from midnight on) say "never again" again. I promise. Never again.
10. I will work to love those around me who love me first.
11. I resolve that I will never resolve to do anything that I am not capable of resolving while sober.
12. I will try to be sober more often.
13. In about an hour and a half I will beginning calling the cat Wetto and that will be that.
george bush is a bitch-ass knob goblin. bitch-ass knob goblin. bitch-ass knob goblin.
sandra, you two-timing bad boy bitch hussy. i coulda made you an anne heche coming to fresno in a drug hazed sort of way.
never again.
UPDATE: (10;26 PM)
Resolutions For 2007:
1. 12 and 13.

Common Goals

whoopsie. it seems that the house of representatives is at it again. unhappy that the president's illegal wiretapping has not led to any uncovering of real live bona fide terrorists other than a catholic school group and a box of Quaker Oats, it has decided to try and make it a federal crime (punishable by up to 5 years in prison) for...well, feeding the poor. nourishing the sick. clothing the children. all of those things that Jesus yada'd about.
you remember Jesus. he was that kind of homeless guy with no paper identification, he roused the rabble, sometimes depended on the kindness of strangers, spoke out against tyranny and foreign occupation, loved his brother, talked of camels being more flexible than rich folks. you know...yada. communist crap. evil-doer pap. enemy comforter stuff.
so, now our elected representatives are banding together and making sure that no one of his ilk can get to us real Americans and poison our minds unless he was born here and has an SSN number and can be tracked in the event that another law is passed letting us excommunicate the homegrown variety.
because it's the illegals that threaten our democracy. all of those brown skinned undocumented aliens out there in the field pretending to pick lettuce and grapes, but really passing along secret plans about overthrowing our way of life. keeping their backs and eyes lowered in false humility as we drive by in our cars, but really fingering their vest bombs and sawed-off uzis. thinking bloody thoughts and waiting to eat our young once they've gotten their daily quota of oranges picked.
i sleep better knowing i'm safer than i was yesterday. i walk taller now that i know only a real American is allowed to kill me legally. now i can rest in the comfort of only fearing real Americans. i now only have to fear my neighbors. and the meth dealers. and the white supremicists. and the ultra-religious. and the bigots. and the narrow-minded. and the haters. and the government.
but it's all good, because if this bill passes all of my fear will be associated only with real Americans. and that is a relief. because real Americans are much easier to recognize. we're the ones waving real American flags. we're the ones driving SUV's. we're the ones supporting our troops. we're the ones processing household chemicals into addictive substances. we're the ones spreading democracy around the world while shaving away civil liberties at home. we're the ones who see innocent humans as collateral damage. we're the ones who create kill-em-all video games and then rate them M for Mature so only mature people can play. we're the ones who offer death bonuses to soldiers and the balk at paying off. we're the ones who promise armor for bodies and humvees and then don't do anything. we're the ones who speak of compassion for all, but excoriate the poor for being poor. we're the ones who break the law and then say that it's okay, because God's on our side. we're the ones who punish the dissenter and reward the sinner.
we're the ones who think a 70-year-old man has a natural right to an artificial erection. we're the ones injecting ass fat into our faces, because there's nothing worse than looking one's age. let alone acting it.
we're becoming the Romans. not that the enemy is becoming Jesus. i don't think that Jesus or God would want any part of what we as a world are becoming.
but we're becoming the Romans as we (more and more) fear ourselves and our ability to make rational, informed, common sense decisions about the immediate world we live in. so long as we blindly follow and do what we're told we will always live in fear. and that's exactly what our leaders and their enemies want.
i love being an American. i just wish i could be a better one.
"Churches, social service agencies and immigration groups across the country are rallying against a provision in the recently passed House border-security bill that would make it a federal crime to offer services or assistance to illegal immigrants."
"America is a nation built on the rule of law, and this bill will help us protect our borders and crack down on illegal entry into the United States," Mr. Bush said after the House passed the measure. "Securing our borders is essential to securing the homeland."

Friday, December 30, 2005

Anus Horribilus?

"it is the very nature of a democracy that it not only does, but should, fight with one hand tied behind its back. It is also in the nature of democracy that it prevails against its enemies precisely because it does."
i love that quote. the rest of the article is here.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Have A Cracking Good New Year

(best of? not so sure about that. but then most of mine are dubious. so, i will leave you to greet the new year with my special smile. in hindsight, it makes sense.)
so, i work in an engineering lab. i've been doing this for 5 years now and have become way too proficient in the knowledge of soils and concrete (what it is, does, doesn't want to and shouldn't under any circumstances). if you land safely on an airport runway or arrive safely after a long or short road trip; if you survive an earthquake, because your building didn't can thank me in part).
but it wasn't until i came to my current employer that i began to really learn about the black stuff your wheels grip. with that in mind, i present to you this pictorial tribute to my current passion. the stuff that keeps you safe. the road of happy returns: Ass-Fault. because no man should drive there alone.
HNT is a good thing. visit all of them. now, dammit!

Tuesday, December 27, 2005


Rep. Norm Dicks gets an introduction from me to let him know that i live in his neighborhood now:

Dear Mr. Dicks, I write to you in a state of confusion. It's always been my understanding that no one is above the law. That is supposed to include the president of the United States. Perhaps, that should especially include the Prsident. And not too many years ago we proved that to former President Clinton. He was impeached for lying about an extra-marital affair. This time around, however, President Bush seems to be skating away from a much bigger lie. To wit, he had been approving unwarranted wiretapping in secret even as (and long before) he issued the following quote: "Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires - a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so"- George W. Bush April 20, 2004. This is not sex in the Oval Office. This is not parsing the definition of "is". What Bush has done is lie baldfaced to all of America about breaking a federal law. And he then continued to break it up until the present. He didn't just state the law, he told us he was following it. My confusion stems from the fact that you call the Republican party the Moral Party. Remember when your party said it was going to bring morality back to the White House? Why aren't you now going after Bush and holding him accountable for his lie? Democrats and Liberals (and, yes, there is a difference)alike would applaud you for sticking to your higher agenda. To not do so will bring you back down to where you were before gaining control of our government. As a representative of the people, you either stand firm for what makes our country great or you hide behind the colors of your party. You can choose to be an American or you can choose to be a party liner.It's your choice, but voters like me will remember your actions or lack thereof.

(this is not part of the letter)
also, Sen. John McCain wants high school students to decide whether Intelligent Design should be taught in their schools. Normally, this type of thinking would be considered an extremely liberal way of life. those colleges that let this happen tend to not be taken seriously by any other. evergreen state college comes to mind. but, if we let them decide on this, then i think it only fair that we allow them to vote on the drinking age, the voting age, the driving age, letting military recruiters on campus or not, condoms in the cafeteria...well, you see where i'm going with this. in short, it sounds like a political move by mccain to continue straddling the fence until he knows for sure who he needs to truly appease when it's voting time. not that i don't think children can't make an informed decision. i just don't see how the parents will stay out of it.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Oh. Did We Tread On Your Italian Loafers?

oh wow. the chicago tribune is reporting this. a serious mainstream newspaper is telling us just how bad the CIA fucked up. i mean, this is bad. i knew about the operation. i knew about the indictments. but this is the first time i got to read exact details of how it went down and just HOW BADLY THE CIA SCREWED IT UP. unfortunately, it could lend credence to the white house when it says it relied on the CIA for pre-war clearance. all in all, a mesmerizing read. almost straight out of a bad james bond book.

MILAN, Italy -- The trick is known to just about every two-bit crook in the cellular age: If you don't want the cops to know where you are, take the battery out of your cell phone when it's not in use.Had that trick been taught at the CIA's rural Virginia training school for covert operatives, the Bush administration might have avoided much of the current crisis in Europe over the practice the CIA calls "rendition," and CIA Director Porter Goss might not have ordered a sweeping review of the agency's field operations.

and this one made me laugh out loud. huzzah for harry holimas!

THE good news today is that the great 2005 war on Christmas, the conflagration that launched a thousand op-ed pieces and nearly as many battles on Fox News, is now officially over. And yes, Virginia - Christmas won.

and then i find this article on a major corporation trying to whore in on street taggers and graffiti artists. evidently, t.v., billboards, newspaper flyers, junk mail and random spam mails just earning the bread for Sony investors. now, the giant is tagging walls in violation of local law. to declare that the target consumer is too busy playing Grand Theft Auto to pay attention to its newest toy is basically saying that Sony sells to morons. however, what Sony is trying to sell us is that its consumer base is the street tagger, the hip guy on the street, the next wave in fashion. and this is the very guy who would tell Sony to stick its "lollipop" up its ass and call him/it a fag based on the imagery.

"gee willikers, beav, i think the retard's fallen in love with his dad's swat stick."
also, the kid on the wall looks positively stoned out of his mind. perhaps the gameplayer was swabbed with one of those mayan toads for visual enhancement.
by the way, has anyone else noticed that the more mature rating a game has the lower i.q. it takes to play it?
"Marketers are desperate to find ways to reach people," Garfield said. "Especially young men, who are far too busy playing Grand Theft Auto to notice, say, a 30-second TV commercial."

All The King's Men

i can't vouch for the article, but it does fall in line with arguments i've made here and in newspapers. depleted uranium (DU) is a nuclear weapon. in the first gulf war, we left behind between 500 and 1000 metric tons of its dust. i have no legitimate numbers concerning this war, but pre-estimates were in the range of 1000-2000 metric tons.
the thing is DU makes a great weapon point, because it begins to burn extremely hotly and can pierce tempered steel like that which is used to plate tanks. the only problem is that it continues to burn. forget what it will do to the skin if it makes contact in that state. the real concern is what it can do in particulate form (after it's done burning). DU is depleted uranium, a radioactive substance. it cannot be thrown away by nuclear power plants. it has a long half-life and must be stored for lengths of time that greatly surpass our own lifetimes. if it is ingested through the lungs it can and often will cause fatal cancers. more often, it causes organ failure. and immune system deficiencies. and birth defects. but, because we tip our standard armaments with it, we can claim we are not using nuclear weapons or weapons of mass destruction. you see, a little bit of this stuff in your lungs might not do anything. standing near it will not cause your testicles or ovaries to fall off. but live around it for any extended period of time and your chances of serious or fatal disease becomes very likely. besides malnutrition, DU is blamed by many health agencies as the leading cause of death and birth defect of iraqi children since 1991.
there is and will continue to be argument as to whether using a depleted radioactive substance counts as nuclear warfare. one, the government would have to admit accountability (legally, morally and financially); two, 1991 was the first time this weapon was deployed (so there is no precedent). three, we think of nuclear warfare as mushroom clouds and thousands dead in an instant.
i think that this use falls into the weapons of mass destruction category. why? because it is more insidious and subtler. and will affect many times more people than a nuclear bomb ever could. and no one will know until it's too late. at least, the people breathing the stuff won't. those of us on this side of the ocean should. but we're content to wave our protest banners and shout out slogans about how we've been against the war since the beginning. sort of like putting a magnet ribbon on a car to invoke patriotism. words and slogans. while hundreds of thousands of people are exposed to possible cancer and worse.
isn't it about or past time to demand that our leaders hold themselves to the same standards that they do other leaders of other countries? i'm not against war per se. sometimes a country has to stop another for the greater good. that's our history as a species. but how can we justify force to stop "evil" if we participate in the very acts we accuse the others of doing? we found no weapons of mass destruction in iraq, but we are leaving the mother of all WMDs in our wake.
any of you reading this can call me to task by asking for stats backed by reference. and i can't give it to you. because there are none. not for the illnesses. not for the iraqi children (and, by now, adults). the government does not accept that DU causes illness. no independent groups have been (to my knowledge) allowed unfettered access to those people affected. the news is all anecdotal. the stats are anecdotal. even the scientists and doctors who back my claims state that we may not know the total truth for decades, because radioactive illnesses can take a long time. as for the iraqi children... no one keeps track of how they die above noting time and probable cause of death (which normally looks like malnutrition). not to mention that most iraqi families have no access to doctors. the children grow sick and die. the family wails and buries within 24 hours. where have i been going with this? well, it just seems that all sides of the so-called debate about this war of ours has concentrated itself within the guise of "liar liar pants on fire" or "it's our god-given duty". no one in the mainstream is looking at this from a humanitarian perspective and what the future holds for all of those who are actually there.
well, harry holimas. i and my mimosa (which i drink in the relative safety of my house) salute you and yours and hope you have a SSM-curmudgeon-free weekend.

Friday, December 23, 2005

Because I said So, Part II

as we all know by now, president bush has broken a major law. he went around FISA (the secret court put in place by jimmy carter that authorizes warrants for wiretapping) in order to spy on americans. he did so without the consent of this secret court (that has granted over 10,000 warrants and denied only 4 in 20+ years. he, also, did not inform congress in toto. no dorothy jokes there, please. and no changing inform to perform. civility, people.
so, here's my version of bush's various versions of the defense:

1. No, I didn't.
2. I'm not going to discuss sensitive military programs.
3. No, I didn't. Yeah, I did. Forgettaboutit.
4. Yeah. I did. So what?
5. It's not so much what I did as what they didn't tell me I couldn't do.
6. Clinton and Carter did it.
7. We're investigating the leak, because it's federal crime to leak this sort of thing.
8. No comment.
9. Iraqi elections. Good stuff. Bought a well there once.
10. I have this book I like to read called My Pet Goat.

and that was it. thankyouthankyouthankyou. and if you're into Half Knackered Harry Holimas as much as I am, then finish that beer and get me another. and we shall toast to ourselves and all who love us. and to all who don't...enjoy the canape.

(9:20 pm) added note:
the rain is falling like beach rain. a heavy drizzle with some mist. if you stand in it too long you will get very wet. but to watch? oh so cool. wetto is very, very confused. but she got all new cat litter. amazing how many times they go use it when they hang inside all of the time. those poor bushes back at my last place...and it would explain my problem getting bulbs to grow.

#312 from Reasons To Hate Cats: They won't fertilize for you. In fact, they crap where they crap on purpose.

whether it's to intentionally kill all living organisms within a two foot radius is up to debate. the fact that it does is not. if i could just teach her to shit in the woods.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Because I said So

coming down buckets up here today. basically, a solid week or more of rain. it's making up for the two weeks of dryness before. i'm coming on to a cold so all harry holimas plans are on hold. but it was bound to happen. a bug was flying around the office and peeing in one coffee cup after another, puking up on keyboards and mouses (love them little mousies, mousies what i love to eat...), rubbing its bum on telephone mouthpieces and the like. so, cali-boy takes one in the shorts as he was too busy forcing his body to adjust to a new climate. i've called in sick to work and tried to get some sleep, but Wetto (my cat) has cabin fever and is modifying her daily freakout schedule. normally, it's a once-a-day thing. now, it's every hour. i've gained a new appreciation for the cartoon strip called "get fuzzy".
but my copy of the 11th book in the robert jordan "wheel of time" series arrived yesterday and i've been happily devouring that in between naps.
another joyful thing is the sound i hear a few times a day. now, in fresno i would hear the (taped) bells of st. therese every hour. what a wonderful, relaxing thing. up here in this ship repair town the sound is that of foghorns as ships pull in and ships pull out and work shifts end. it's much too far away to rattle the good china (speaking of which, has anyone ever put out the bad china?), but it's a gentle reminder of the fact that i am surrounded by water. and the shipyard has grand fireworks shows when it finishes a job. there was an aircraft carrier parked here and when the work was finished they held a 45 minute show to celebrate. i could see most of it from my front window. too bad i didn't get a photo of it before it left. ah well. my digital camera will arrive soon and then i can bore you all with how ugly it is up here.

by the way, i wouldn't be doing my duty if i didn't remind everyone that they should research the articles of impeachment, because that is what's going to happen to bush if i have my way...though definately not before next year's congressional elections. democraps need to pull even with or overtake the republithugs in order to make it happen. oh, and the dems need to grow a spine. sometimes, it's more important to take a stand and risk public failure than it is to not and ensure re-election. these so-called public servants are not so much. on either side of the aisle. when they're voted out or they retire they go right into lobbying business and begin earning 10-20 times what they were as "public servants". so, for most of them this whole elected gig is just one rung on a ladder that keeps going up. it's resume fodder. it's glitz and glam and gary glitter. and every season we look to the rookies, hoping they will provide the shock and awe so desparately needed to infuse conscience and moral fiber back into that cesspool we call washinton, d.c. but then we get pissed if they don't line up with everything we stand for. no wonder they become so jaded so fast.
some of my friends like to blame the current climate solely on bush and his bedfellows (he did get a man date after all). but really it's us. we vote them in. or we don't vote at all. either way we bitch when things don't go our way. and, yes, politics is as broken as the california welfare and child support systems. but defending our way of life as a democracy does not mean going to the polls when asked to and then ignoring it after that. and it doesn't mean banging a gong and screaming about crypto-facism and then not voting at all. voting is not a privilege. it is a duty. the pols are supposed to work for us, but as long as they know or feel we're sheep who will do what we're told they will continue to walk all over us. on both sides of the aisle.
maybe it's time for someone to buy two hours of airtime on all of the major network stations and run "network" so no matter which channel you turn to...there it is.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Godzilla VS Meganaire

okay. wait a, yeah, here i am suggesting impeachment upon president bush. but i haven't thought about the ramifications of it. if bush is booted then cheney assumes the mantle. and cheney is vastly more intelligent, machiavellian, inhuman and driven. this wouldn't be nixon/ford. this would be...worse. much worse. there would be no waffling. there would be plundering and raping at a meteoric pace.
as a liberal democrat i should be loudly cheering bush's latest gaffe that actually qualifies a major crime. you know? finally, something that no one can deny. but yet...
i begin to wonder who leaked that bit of news to the papers. have you noticed that the white house has not announced an investigation on any paper's page one? bush condemned the leak. he even went so far as to say that that information was top-secret. and he couldn't believe that someone would leak it? think back to valerie plame and compare these two. with plame they promised an investigation and bush said that anyone involved in the leak would not be working for the white house anymore. then he amended that to anyone arrested. then he watered it down to anyone found guilty. eventually (in one speech) he changed it to convicted. this time there's nothing. and to me the question now becomes "is this the house of cards that was supposed to fall a long time ago and somehow hasn't yet?".
so, we boot bush and in comes cheney. and that scares the hell out of me. he's been running the show. so, who leaked the info? why do we always think it must be a person of conscience? i think there's a pony's chance of the leaker being someone greedier. someone more like cheney.
and suddenly i wonder if keeping bush in might be better than allowing cheney full access. what're the fucking odds on this one?
but i'm also the guy who stands in the drizzle up here and yells "piss harder". so maybe i'm not the proper barrister. and maybe sometimes a piss is just a piss.

Has Bush Created Such A Mess That Impeachment Can't Be An Option?

From the White House website itself in April 2004 is the transcript of one of his speeches. Below is a portion. Click here to view the entire piece. It speaks for itself. Bush broke the very law he claimed he was upholding and would uphold. He lied. Plain and simple to the people in the audience and to the nation. This is much, much worse than a blowjob. Remember that as he was speaking these words he had already reauthorized warrantless wiretapping multiple times. This should be considered a treasonable action:
(italics are mine)
"Secondly, there are such things as roving wiretaps. Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires -- a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so. It's important for our fellow citizens to understand, when you think Patriot Act, constitutional guarantees are in place when it comes to doing what is necessary to protect our homeland, because we value the Constitution.
But a roving wiretap means -- it was primarily used for drug lords. A guy, a pretty intelligence drug lord would have a phone, and in old days they could just get a tap on that phone. So guess what he'd do? He'd get him another phone, particularly with the advent of the cell phones. And so he'd start changing cell phones, which made it hard for our DEA types to listen, to run down these guys polluting our streets. And that changed, the law changed on -- roving wiretaps were available for chasing down drug lords. They weren't available for chasing down terrorists, see? And that didn't make any sense in the post-9/11 era. If we couldn't use a tool that we're using against mobsters on terrorists, something needed to happen.
The Patriot Act changed that. So with court order, law enforcement officials can now use what's called roving wiretaps, which will prevent a terrorist from switching cell phones in order to get a message out to one of his buddies.
Thirdly, to give you an example of what we're talking about, there's something called delayed notification warrants. Those are very important. I see some people, first responders nodding their heads about what they mean. These are a common tool used to catch mobsters. In other words, it allows people to collect data before everybody is aware of what's going on. It requires a court order. It requires protection under the law. We couldn't use these against terrorists, but we could use against gangs.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Harry Holimus

so, "dr. germ" and "mrs. anthrax"---two leading scientists in saddam hussein's bio-warfare department--- were released today from U.S. custody. evidently, their story that all bio-weapons had been destroyed before our dirty little war began is true. we, on the other hand, are merely saying that they represent no threat to us. we are not saying, "oopsie. whaddya know? that goldurned saddam wasn't shittin' us. maybe we shouldn't have forced out those UN inspectors right before we started bombing. um, i mean we shouldn't have bombed. um, i mean it's all about the democracy, ya know? don't be a defeatist. defeatism sucks and takes away from analyzing history...later on."
wait a minute. hold the phone. wasn't it dick cheney who claimed that saddam kicked the UN out that last time? why, i think it was. not us. no sir. we did not tell the UN we could no longer vouch for the inspectors' safety, because we were about to begin taking out biblically important sites (evidently, oil rigs and financial centers aren't). even though those inspectors had completely unfettered access to any and all sites and the saddam regime was no longer slowing them down. not ONE WMD. nowhere. nada. nights. niente. zip. zilcho. null set. absent. did saddam have them? well, you bet. who did he get them from? well, democracy and freedom. back when iran was the axis of evil. so to speak. wait, it still is. funny how the enemies of your enemies are your frineds until they're not and your enemies still are. kind of makes a person wonder if the shenanigans are worth it in the long run. unless, of course, democracy and freedom for a people who don't know what the hell you're talking about are on the line. then, it's an imperative. until it's not. or until the military/industrial complex whispers that its backers (read: manufacturers) aren't making a big enough profit from the annual "blow everything up so all of our military budgets can be renewed for the same or higher level". did you know that? before each year fiscally ends for the military there is a mass movement to explode as many armaments as possible. why? because if you don't then the government decides in its infinite wisdom that your branch of the military must not need as much money the next year. the military would have us believe that these armaments have a very short safe life expectancy, but that's not true. we're using artillery in iraq right now that have been stockpiled for years. but to keep even with the other military branches each branch feels the need (no, knows the need) to rid itself of as much artillery as possible. this is "rising to the highest level of one's incompetence" as possible. our government will slash funding for groups that prove they can operate within their boundaries. militarily, that is. why doesn't it, instead, reward for fiscal responsibility? ironic, too, that it is cutting funding on the very domestic and social groups that need more and complaining that they don't do enough oversight and rein in their spending (even as these groups watch their funding diminish each and every year). so, simple government math. overfunded military + needless spending = more. underfunded domestic/social programs + need = no more free handouts you lazy welfare queens and useless commoners.
how i got to this from iraq i don't know. but if you'd been on the receiving end of my phone call with my boss 30 minutes ago about something i have no control over, you wouldn't know or care.
Harry Holimus!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Bush Tried To Snow Us This Weekend And The Weather Up Here Shows Him How It's Really Done

hey, it's snowing a bit tonight. it probably won't stick around (it won't get cold enough). but still, whoo hoo! it looks great falling through the streetlights.
and that reminds me: as we all should know by now, president bush broke the law by authorizing spying on US citizens without first getting warrants as proscribed by judicial system. has dug up some of alberto gonzalez's testimony before congress when he was being nominated to attorney general. oopsie...he flat-out said bush was not above the law and that he would inform congress if illegalities were commited by the Chimp. go here for more.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Saturday Ramble

today, president bush addressed the nation via radio and defended his 30 times renewed policy of secretly spying on americans, stating that it was vital in protecting us from terrorists. tomorrow, he will speak to us via television and probably not bring this up (because many more people watch tv than listen to radio). there is much debate over the legality of this surveillance. the NSA can read my emails, tap my phone, search my purchase history, demand access to my employment personnel file, track my library visits, and walk through my home without a warrant of any kind when i'm not there. every 45 days bush must re-authorize this and he has done so more than 30 times. in a row. no time off for good behavior for us (with no assurance that this works other than bush's tired "trust me" ticket like he tried to use with harriet meirs). and it wasn't until recently that anyone other than a very select few at the highest levels of government knew about this. a top secret memo was leaked to the media last week, i think, and it immediately created an uproar. sen. arlen spector has called for an investigation into the policy's legality. at first, bush said that confirming its authenticity would put the program and its operatives at risk and expressed deep concern that someone would leak this type of intelligence (evidently, bush has a very short memory or he would have noted the irony in relation to valerie plame's outing and his statement at the time that anyone involved in this would be fired). one quote to make one think:
"our enemies have learned information they should not have, and the unauthorized disclosure of this effort damages our national security and puts our citizens at risk. Revealing classified information is illegal, alerts our enemies and endangers our country."
but the crux of this post is to remind people that this is not a one-off by our "elected" administration. in case you have forgotten, a while back we bugged UN secretary general kofi annan's office in order to get a leg up on anyone who might oppose our dirty little war. you can read alternet's article from the archives here. we spied on the UN in flagrant violation of international and domestic law. and our so-called newspeople wouldn't touch it. why? dunno. maybe because at that time no one was standing up to the government. objective press then meant no future access. and, as bob woodward so eloquently put it when he finally admitted he'd sold his journalistic integrity to the highest bidder, access is all that matters.

Also, i did not know this until recently, but evidently it is a crime punishable by prison time in many european countries to deny that the holocaust happened. and, as has been proven of late, this law has teeth. two men have been arrested and accused in the past month. one of them was convicted in absentia by germany and extradited by us. now, iran's bigwig has stepped into this by calling the holocaust a myth. and our administration is talking about economic sanctions in order to punish iran. now, as dumb as i think someone would have to be to claim that a whole shitload of jews weren't killed by the nazis, i have to wonder about this being a crime. it's an opinion. it's a thought. and it lends real credence to george orwell's fictional thought crimes. europeans are very reluctant to discuss racism (and denying the holocaust does fall into that category). it's a very, very sensitive subject. polls have shown that they admire america for the fact that (at least) our racism is out in the open and is debated publicly and often. in europe, it's different. perhaps because of the holocaust no one wants to talk about the fact that some countries didn't learn their lesson when it comes to tolerance and acceptance. perhaps in their rush after WWII to bring in immigrants for the workforce they overreached. perhaps being seen as a rolemodel for tolerance was more diplomatically important than monitoring the potential fallouts to the native populations. france just experienced what can happen when non-natives are allowed in and then ignored for great lengths of time.
but anyway. i was wondering what will happen to the people of iran if international sanctions (i.e. economic, military, agricultural, medical) are placed on them. history has proved that over 500,000 iraqi children died as a result of sanctions we placed on them after the first war back in 1991. we put the sanctions in place to purportedly force the iraqi government into heeling. it didn't and as a result we helped cause our own little holocaust. is this what we're willing to live with in iran? no sane westerner would want iran to have nuclear bombs. but will that same sane westerner be willing to relive a recent historical failure of grave consequence? we've done the same thing to north korea. while our sanctions haven't produced one iota of governmental difference there many hundreds of thousands of innocent people have died from starvation and freezing. and that's the thing about sanctions: if we get to the point where we are forced to impose them, then we've already failed. the threat of sanctions can work on weaker regimes. most of them rely on foreign investment if only to prop an unpopular figurehead or group of cronies. but when dealing with strong (and you can read that as totally despotic with the backing of the military) governments that refuse to yield it's somewhat inevitable that war will ensue.
so, i'm done wandering. see you later.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Just Not Gonna Do it

(okay, it ain't the most interesting read in the world, but dana carvey shows up at the end of this interview and i about shit my pants. the emphasis way down there is mine. enjoy)
President Bush on 'NYT' Spying Scoop: Not Main Story of Day By E&P Staff Published: December 16, 2005 2:30 PM ET
In another lengthy interview with a TV news anchor, following his sit-down with NBC's Brian Williams earlier this week, President Bush has taped an interview with PBS's Jim Lehrer, to air tonight. As part of the interview, Lehrer tried to press the president on the major scoop in The New York Times, and now other newspapers, today on the White House approval for the secretly spying on Americans by the National Security Agency. Here is that portion of the transcript.*
MR. LEHRER: First, the New York Times story this morning that says that you authorized secret wiretaps by the National Security Agency of thousands of Americans. Is that true?PRESIDENT BUSH: Jim, we do not discuss ongoing intelligence operations to protect the country, and the reason why is that there's an enemy that lurks, that would like to know exactly what we're trying to do to stop them. I will make this point. That whatever I do to protect the American people, and I have an obligation to do so, that we will uphold the law, and decisions made are made understanding we have an obligation to protect the civil liberties of the American people.
MR. LEHRER: So if, in fact, these things did occur, they were done legally and properly?PRESIDENT BUSH: So you're trying to get me to talk about a program--
PRESIDENT BUSH: --that's important not to talk about, and the reason why is that we're at a war with an enemy that still wants to attack. I, uh--after 9/11, I told the American people I would do everything in my power to protect the country, within the law, and that's exactly how I conduct my presidency.
MR. LEHRER: Well, Mr. President, with all due respect, wouldn't you think--don't you believe that answer is going to lead people to believe that you're confirming that in fact you did this?PRESIDENT BUSH: We don't talk about sources and methods. Don't talk about ongoing intelligence operations. I know there's speculation. But it's important for the American people to understand that we will do--or I will use my powers to protect us, and I will do so under the law, and that's important for our citizens to understand.
MR. LEHRER: I don't want to "beat a dead horse" here, Mr. President--
MR. LEHRER: --but the story is now all over the world.
MR. LEHRER: I mean, it's on the front page of the New York Times, the Washington post, every newspaper in America today, and it's going--it's the main story of the day. So--PRESIDENT BUSH: It's not the main story of the day.
MR. LEHRER: Well, but I mean in terms of the way it's being covered--
[Simultaneous conversation.]
PRESIDENT BUSH: The main story of the day is the Iraqi election.MR. LEHRER: Right, and I'm going to get to that.
MR. LEHRER: But I mean, is it correct to say that the National Security Agency is normally told to do surveillance only on international calls rather than domestic calls, without reference to this specific thing?
PRESIDENT BUSH: I--Jim, I know that people are anxious to know the details of operations, they--people want me to comment about the veracity of the story. It's the policy of this government, just not gonna do it, and the reason why is is that because it would compromise our ability to protect the people. I think the point that Americans really want to know is twofold. One, are we doing everything we can to protect the people? And two, are we protecting civil liberties as we do so? And my answer to both is yes, we are. ...

Monday, December 12, 2005

They Call Me Ashmael

so, here's what i'm noticing about washington so far. the liberals are becoming the puritanical fiends they claim to abhor on the other side of the fence. as of last thursday, smoking is not only not allowed in any public building but it is now the most repressive anti-smoking state in the country. a person may not smoke within 25 feet of a public building or air vent or any other conduit which may transmit residue to those inside said building or air vent.
now, before you non-smokers fling stones at me let me just say that i am and have been fine with not being allowed to smoke inside. i'm used to it since i come from california. and, in general, i approve of it. i don't smoke in my own house...unless required to. but the level of "god smite them down" rhetoric i've been hearing and reading since thursday is disturbing, to say the least. one person quoted on a local news show went so far as to compare me to a child molester. okay. i only have one thing to say about that. i'm willing to smoke in the middle of the street if that's what you want, but i will not sodomize juveniles while dodging traffic. that's just rude and inconsiderate.
as for the extremely high taxes on cigarettes i have to wonder who is making out here. the northwest is a designated smoking area. always has been. will smokers quit, because the cost is high? will children not start, because the cost is high? probably not. and when the out-of-pocket cost of quitting aids is just as ridicuously high and the addiction is so strong it seems sensible to presume that the state is in the business of lining its coffers at the expense of smokers and has no real interest in helping them to quit.
i'll tell you this: the medical community and pharmaceutical companies don't want me to quit. somewhere down the line i may become a cashcow for them. lung cancer puts me at the top of the money i.v. and repeated "attempts" to quit with no solid backing by the very people who make the quitting aids makes me a repeat customer for their very overpriced comestibles. have any of you read the instruction booklets? all of the steps, that if followed, ensure success, but it's still up to me to be strong. no talk about nicotine being one of the 3 or 4 most addictive substances known to humans. a couple of websites to go to (including phillip morris).
i'm not whining...much. i am responsible for my life. if i really want to, i can be strong. but all of this really is large companies' attempts to make money off of the weak.

also, the seattle city council will be voting on whether to outlaw sales of single beers and strong wine (fortified) at stores in certain parts of the city in order to "cut down on public drunkeness". as bad as this may sound, mostly it's only the poor, homeless and marginal segments of our society who purchase alcohol in this fashion. most of them aren't driving. they're walking or using public transportation. or sleeping in the alley. the serial drunks tend to buy a pint and park it in their back pockets.
and remember, it was the seattle city council (maybe not all of the same people as now) who swept ALL of the homeless out of the business district downtown when the WTO came in for a conference on the late 90's. they did so, as well, when clinto came through on a campaign stop before his second term. the funny thing about the WTO incident is that it just allowed protesters that much more room to shut everything down and, of course, massive riots and carnage ensued (i stayed at home with a twelve pack and watched it on tv, laughing my ass off).

so, i guess all that i'm saying is that it's funny and kind of sad when those who throw stones and epithats at those they abhor begin to resemble them. and it weren't for beer and cigarettes i would take over the world.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

$6 A Flipping Pack!?!

so, my first week here is done and the second looms. i have to admit that this move hasn't been without regrets. i miss my friends even though i tended to not answer the phone or door when i was there. i miss the local watering hole within walking distance. i miss the coffee shop and its familiarity. i miss going into work and knowing exactly what my responsibilities were and not having to worry about the intangibles. i miss not having to think; everything was so rote that i didn't need to wake up.
this new adventure is an anxious time. i don't know what my new work responsibilities entail. i don't have a new bank account. my company vehicle is nowhere to be seen. everything about my new house that must be paid for i have to pay. my new tombraider games won't load on my computer. i have yet to get renter's insurance on my belongings or have a walkthrough done on the house by my landlord. i haven't repaired the window airconditioner i broke (when i was forced to) after i locked myself out of the house my first night here. my kitchen things are still mostly in their boxes, because it's easier to hang out on the computer and drink beer. i'm down to my last traveller's check, because safeway wouldn't cash my payroll check. and the car is low on gas.
certain solutions are in order. as for the company car, i think that the company will be paying for my personal car's gas and mileage. i mean, the offer letter i signed said i would be provided these things and it's been a week. so, my opinion is that i am covered one way or the other.
i will give the finger to "being on salary" and go open a bank account tomorrow. (my manager let me know on my second day that leaving early or arriving late could make a bad impression on the hourly employees...duh. so, according to him, if i need to address moving issues i should come in early or stay late to make up for time lost).
but it's beautiful here. i can see the cascade mountains from my front porch and part of mt. rainier. i get a glimpse of the olympic mountains on the way to work. and i see water, water everywhere. it's always green here. the temps aren't too bad so long as that biting little breeze stays away. the cat is having a blast now that she found an easy way onto the roof. and, except for the asshole amount of taxes on cigarettes, life seems affordable.
but don't get me started on paying over $6 at safeway for one lousy pack of smokes. lecram, we need to talk.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Say It Ain't So, Joe...Oh Yeah, Joe's An asshole From Way Back

this is the kind of shit that strikes terror in the hearts of "normal" people. joe lieberman replacing donald rumsfeld? i have the deck of trading cards depicting our current (for the most part) administration as twisted serpents. if joe takes over for donald, do i get a freebie from the card company? or should i go for the bobble head doll? because that is what joe will do, and has been doing since even before he "ran" for vice president way back when. jewish vote...gimme a fucking break. chameleon vote is more like it. joe will do anything for re-election. and he will harm anyone who gets in his way. so, here's the link.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Straight Outta Vladisvostock

huzzah to my comrades in the vodka belt. up with the hard working class, down with the fascist dogs:

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

okay. so there is no forced air in the joint. the only heat is from the cute little gas fireplace. okay. setting up base camp there then. and waiting for the oxygen tanks before making the final ascent into the clear blue cold. huddling around a small fake fire is no camp in the woods, let me tell ya. one good thing about the cold, though, is that the cat is easier to catch now that it's frozen. i sold the refridgerator and put everything outside in the backyard...just kidding. the fridge is now being used as the warming oven. just kidding, i've decided to raise chickens and it's now an incubator.
i finally bought a shower rod (it's cheaper to buy him than rent him by the hour) and curtain so i can bathe properly. i'm pretty sure that the owners of the house think hygeine is a fascist ploy to keep us distracted from the government's effort to take over the world. i, also, think they go to hempfest and burningman (isn't that a town in england?). up until now bathing was not so important. i had only myself to impress and, since i am so impressionable, it didn't take much to convince myself that everyone else must stink too.
i remember when i moved up to seattle in 1992 the first thing i noticed was that everyone was giving birth to twins and triplets. it was an oddity to be sure. this time around the trend seems to be black eyes. i guess the doors have a lot of pent up rage.
work is work over the first two days. i have no idea what i'm doing, although i have no idea what anyone else is doing. they gave me my own cell phone/radio, which is cool. the battery's dead and they have no extra charger, which is cooler. i look important, but don't have to answer it.
i'm waiting on my company vehicle. evidently the siberian motorwerks is on strike until the spring thaw and world yak milking competitions are done with. i've been given the second day smoke break talk:
"thou shalt not encourage others to be like you".
"thou shalt not look like you're enjoying yourself".
"thou shalt not bring up the fact that there are now more smokers then nonsmokers in this office".
"for it makes me look petty and resentful".
"and no god appreciates having that thrown in his face".
"and i can smite you with my Big Stick".
actually, my boss is okay so far...just a bit hopped up on the bean. i was going to recommend decaf, but just then his head began to swivel 360 degrees. maybe tomorrow.
by the way, washington men are evidently very ugly (the straight ones anyway). everywhere i go the chicks are digging me. smiling at me and all that. a two year old actually scribbled her number, spit it at me and gave me a drool-hither look. i asked her what hobbies she was into and she said "gumming". reminded me too much of my grandmother.
but then she said "breast feeding".
hold the phone. suddenly, we have something in common. but i thought about it and the whole diaper changing thing (as intimate as it may be) is kind of a turn off. so, i said, "nah. i got a ride. but maybe i'll call you. check you later". her mother was pretty impressed by that and told me HER curfew wasn't until 10 pm and we could get together after her weekly "So, You're Pregnant Again And Still Two Years Shy Of Your High School Diploma" class. i'm going to see what's on tv first.
which brings me to my newest moneymanking scheme: a tee shirt that says "Chix Dig Bloggers". i mean, we all know it's true. think about it. we spend an inordinate amount of time telling the world just how hip, cool, educated, stone cold foxy and worldly we are and then we log off and have sex with groupies, right? tell me i'm wrong. i bet a donut to a dildo you can't...
or is it just me?

Thursday, December 01, 2005

SSM In The Wasizzle!

well. wow. what an interesting and eventful trip it was just to drive 900 miles straight up the map. as some of you know i recently accepted a promotion within my company that required me to move from the sunny locale of central california to the, uh, not as warm climes of washington.
i left yesterday afternoon after a last coffee with lecram at javawava. i figured if i left at 4 pm and pretty much drove the whole time (with a couple of naps) i would bypass rush hour traffic in sacramento, portland, olympia and tacoma (which can be the worst - everyone is now living where i am and commuting to seattle). everything started off well. in fact, the first six hours were amazing in their effortlessness. then i got to redding, ca. the traffic sign advisory was flashing, so i tuned my radio to 1610 AM to hear what was going on. i was still two hours or so from the oregon border. what the advisory had to say was this: "Interstate 5 is closed due to snow conditions at the Oregon border. There is no time estimate as to when it will be reopened."
being the foolhardy soul that i am, i drove as far as i could. upon being greeted by the CHP and told to turn around, i did. i checked into a motel in the town of Shasta Dam at about 9:30 and proceeded to finish a john grisham book. i also watched the late news only to see pictures of a massive storm that had decided to wait a day before pouncing. the Vivarin i'd taken two hours earlier wore off at about midnight. the cat woke me up repeatedly and at 4:30 AM i got up, did my usuals, made coffee and went out to check the car radio for an update on the highway conditions. i got static. the night still being in firm control of things i decided to pack up ( takes longer than one might think when a cat is involved) and hit the road, hoping for the best. i stopped off at a roadside mart just outside Shasta Dam in order to check weather conditions and buy a set of snow chains ( the Spyder chains that came with the car lacked one essential ingredient...the 13 mm torque wrench that tightens them on, which i found out at 5:00 AM).
all of this being done and being told by the toothless old hag running the store that she had no idear whut wus goin ahn up in them hills i set out to find out.
evidently, nothing was going on. the whiteout blizzard had changed to torrential rain. worked for me. i made my way over the syskiou mountains at about 30 miles per hour, scared out of my wits. it was pitch black, rain running sideways and bigrigs trying to blow me off the road as they made up for lost time. not that i blame them. and not that i'm smart enough to realize that if they can drive fast then the road must be okay. but there was ice and slush and general squishiness under the tires.
when the sun finally came up the world was glorious. snow covered everything but the road. and i'll tell ya: there's nothing like driving through oregon after a snowstorm. all forest and all white. unfortunately, interstate 5 through oregon is THE WORST STRETCH OF HIGHWAY IN THE WORLD!!! running water everywhere! you like hydroplaning? move to the great state of oregon. every 2 minutes i was hitting a small patch of standing or running water that had nowhere to go but up my tires' asses. and at 70 MPH (once i was out of the siskkious) it gets a bit annoying. i work for an engineering firm that works the assholes who build these damn highways and the oregonian state shovel holders are numbnuts as are the engineers who drew out the plans. gawdawmighty! oh, and the speed "limit" in the mountains is 65 MPH unless there's a curve or 400 that need to be taken at 50. but get into the flatlands and everything's 55 or 60. what the fuck?!? AND oregon seems to be in the process of fixing interstate 5 so as to make it more interstate-like. i drove through there 5 years ago and said shovels are still in said same place. with the same workers still looking busy leaning on them. in the snow.
but i digress. it was not snowing, only raining in sheets. and i'd only lost 8 hours. not a big deal since i don't start work until monday. and i knew if i could make it through Grant's Pass without any more weather anomolies i would be in like flint. i stopped at a rest stop early in oregon to ask a trucker about it and he said "wet pavement all the way down". cool. top speed. hit the curves flying. and he was right. all rain, no ice.
so, there i was coming into washington making up time like there's no tomorrow. and washington, well pssht. easy money. doesn't snow in western washington until late december, early january. i stopped off at the first rest stop to call my rental people and let them know i would be at their office around 4:30. after some fun chat about I-5 closing the night before and all of that, my contact let me know the snow was coming down like crazy where she was and they were shutting down early. i laughed and said i'd use the combination for the house key she'd given me to get in when i arrived and rang off. as soon as i walked away from the pay phone (some 3 hours away from my destination) it began to snow. i asked a man walking up if he was driving from that area and how the weather was. he told me he was coming from california and it couldn't be as bad as it was the night before when he was allowed to drive over the siskious with chains and four wheel drive. i wanted to walk over and smack him a good one. so damn smug. so damn right.
so, it snowed for the last three hours of my trip. at one point i was driving 40 MPH behind a trucker and wondering if i was going to spend another night in a motel just a stone's throw away from my new house. but i decided that as long as the locals were was i. there were times there when i couldn't see more than 50 yards in front of my windshield. there were times when the snow spray blinded me. but it was beautiful. what a way to be welcomed back to my favorite state. an early storm, a white wonderland, christmas come early. when i found my new place finally (found the other one on the same street first that my landlords hold and had to ask directions, because the street stops and takes up again somewhere else) the lawn was covered in white, but the fake fire furnace inside was on and the house was toasty. still can't figure out how to turn on the forced air yet.
the place is straight out of the tower district from my home town. very cool, very comfortable (except for the fact that my stuff that i sent with a mover hasn't arrived yet so i'm sitting on the floor as i write this and will be sleeping on the floor for who knows how long). but why does whirlpool make refridgerators and microwaves and fridgidaire makes ovens?

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Feel My Ire, Burn In Fire!

WASHINGTON, Nov. 25 - Republicans of all stripes want to cut taxes, but rarely have they been in so much disarray about whose to cut.
If House Republicans and President Bush have their way, more than half of tax reductions over the next five years will go to the top 1 percent of households, those with average incomes of $1.1 million.
House leaders are pushing a $63-billion tax-cutting package that would extend President Bush's tax cut on stock dividends, protect oil companies from a windfall profits tax and shield people caught using illegal tax shelters.
The Republican-controlled Senate, by contrast, has passed a bill that would cut taxes by $59 billion but ignore Mr. Bush's top priority, and that contains two other provisions that have provoked his wrath.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The Lost HNT

not so nekkid maybe for some tastes. maybe too nekkid for others.

trip on this. it was 1979 or 80. i was 15 or 16. visiting my friend in aptos. it's a hussong's cantina tee shirt. a sexy cool sweater. and one succulent turkey sandwich. and isn't that what being thankful is all about? not knowing you look like a dork while you're acting like one? and then someday you see the picture and are glad you did this? so damn thankful.

and half nekkid thursday can be yours here for only one kiss.

Monday, November 21, 2005

The Clock, She's Ticking. Time To Saddle Up

Last Fresno Bee rant while still in Fresno (letter to the editor):

Whoa! When Vice President Dick Cheney says "We never had the burden of proof" about Saddam Hussein's alleged WMD's as a defense against not being able to find a single one even when that was the foremost reason given for going to war along with Hussein's alleged ties to Osama bin has to ask whose responsibility it was. After all, we made claim after claim about the WMD's and purported "irrevocable evidence". It was written in stone as far as we knew.But, suddenly, proving it is not our responsibility. It's Hussein's. When did this happen? When did we earn the right to accuse, but not be held responsible for inaccuracy? If you sling the stone you have just declared yourself innocent of all sin. Or you have a very good lawyer. So, which is it? Do we know the WMD's exist or are we throwing ourselves on the "it seemed like a good idea at the time and you can't prove otherwise" court?

Thursday, November 17, 2005

SSM Speaks From His Perch

even the conservative members of congress are fed up with our "losing in iraq? no, we're not. look at the shiny object i'm dangling in my other hand" policy our administration is handing out and being gulped up by the limbaughs, hannitys, o'reillys and coulters in our midst. the tide has turned. the public (that's us by and large) is waking up and smelling the carnage. there is almost no one who hasn't heard of or read about Plamegate; or about those 16 words delivered to congress on tv that promised death and destruction to us if we didn't let bushco. bomb and kill tens of thousands of iraqis; or the fact that not one WMD has been found in iraq; or that not one shred of evidence has been brought forth to connect iraq to al quaeda before we began our "liberation". who among us has witnessed coffins being brought back from iraq that contain a soldier at night so the media can't photograph it? who among us has not read almost continously that all abuse of "detainees" was commited only by low-ranking soldiers and that it was done without the consent or knowledge of their superiors? who among us has not read of our administration denying that it condones or uses torture, but will veto any bill that forbids it? who among us is not cognizant of the fact that alberto gonzalez rewrote US rules to allow torture? who among us thinks that withdrawing our troops signifies failure on the part of our country as a whole? other than that we allowed it to happen at all? coming to our senses and stopping this is not failure. finally understanding the depths of our administration's depravity is not failure. remembering that we as a nation come from and stand for something larger than a small cadre of "elected" officials who have managed to stamp out almost all oversight into their actions is not failure. to me, what defines failure is the inability or unwillingness of we as the people to watchdog our representatives. when we agree with an elected person on many things we tend to overlook the other less savory components of their actions. as an example, if a senator agrees that abortion is reprehensible and works to overturn laws that allow it, we turn a blind eye to his or her laundering of money. if a congressperson speaks out against the war, we turn away from and try not to acknowledge that they accept political donations from the very corporations that are reaping obscene profits from that war. "politics make for odd bedfellows" is as anachronistic a phrase as exists. we either stand for something as a people and a nation or we don't. do we believe that "democracy" should be spread militarily around the world? or do we believe that we should continue to lead by example? our administration believes that leading by example is coherent with the policy of military expansion. do you? 2,179 military deaths is but a drop in the bucket compared to any of our previous wars. and all of those were based on democracy. but only a few were actually started by us. we used to have an isolationist policy. so long as we were left alone we would leave everyone else alone. do what you will, just don't bring it here. but times have changed. now, we truly live in a global village. what happens in zimbabwe affects us here. a tsunami on the other side of the world affects us here. an earthquake in pakistan affects us here. a superflu in get the drift. so, planes flying into our "headquarters" is a serious thing. it requires retaliation. it demands revenge. it needs an answer written in blood. this is how we think on a primal level. we must have retribution. this is older than romeo and juliet. this is older than cain and abel. it is tribal, it is spec-ial, it is reptilian...except for the fact that those entities we consider animals don't ascribe to this. so, it is not older than us. it IS us. and when we talk about breaking the cycle of abuse or violence within generations, this is really what we speak to. this is the intrinsic conundrum. we break the cycle (if we can) of our parents or their parents and we consider ourselves healed. we don't ask the bigger question, which is: where did that person i consider to be the founder of my disfunction get it from? humans created emotional conflict, but we won't address it on an eonic level. we cure ourselves at $150 an hour and lay the wreath of our woes at the feet of those who came before us. we don't see this as a perfidy to the generations before us who tried just as hard in their own capacity to fix everything. we see only the reality given to us by those in power. and, in my eyes (and only as an american), that reality is "we are right, the world is wrong; we need more, the world needs less; we deserve it, the world should be punished for denying us our god given right as a great nation". in other words, haven't we been the shining beacon of hope for too long? haven't we given more to the world in terms of technology and humanitarianism and education and medicine and...everything? isn't it time for us to reap the whirlwind? the world should belong to us. we have spent 300+ years teaching ourselves and the world about freedom and democracy. 300+ years! isn't that eyeblink of a timespan enough? forget the notion that empires of ancient lasted much, much longer only to fall. forget that we stole all of our laws and "ethics" from them. we are for real. we count more than any who came before us. we are right. even if we've forgotten every "fix" we've tried to make to the world around us in the past. even if we've forgotten every "leader" we've put in place in a foreign country who turned into a homicidal manaic. even if we've forgotten every doctrine we've let our leaders pass that affected another country, but did nothing to improve the plight therein. does it mean we shouldn't continue to try? no. does it mean we need to take a close and nonending look at what we do and who we let administer all of these ideas? yes. and that's what we keep forgetting. "eternal vigilance is the price of freedom" is a motto that we tend to believe means always watch for enemies without. but much more often it is the enemies within (those who would prosper at the expense of others). if we cannot properly maintain ourselves, how can we honestly approach others about their behavior and expect them to receive us in more than a contemptuous manner? one more motto that comes to mind is "loose lips sink ships". and that is exactly what we are being told to adhere to right now. except that the people telling us to zip it are the ones flapping their gums and destroying anyone who disagrees with them. you and i walk through metal detectors, bomb detectors, shoe checkers. but we're instructed to keep our mouths shut when it comes to asking questions. anyone who questions the government and its behavior is deemed irresponsible and unamerican. and we let it go. it's all too big for us. the vastness is mindboggling. and we have kids to get to the soccer field. and bills to pay. and a festival to work on. and a career to concentrate on. just too much for one person. and that's what the very people we elect to represent us end up expecting. too much distraction, not enough focus. we are such good consumers. we'll buy almost anything if the ad is well done.
below is a paragraph from a speech given by a conservative congressperson. i included this quote here, because it is the one which makes me mad. the rest of the speech is eloquent and timely (in the sense that those we elected are now smelling the wilted roses). in particular, this guy says the war should be personalised. how much more personal can it get when upwards of over 100,000 iraqis have been killed? and how many sons and daughters of congresspeople have actually been sent to iraq or afghanistan? the answer is less than 10. that being said, the following and its link are very interesting:

"This war needs to be personalized. As I said before, I have visited with the severely wounded of this war. They are suffering. Because we in Congress are charged with sending our sons and daughters into battle, it is our responsibility, our obligation, to speak out for them. That's why I am speaking out."

Monday, November 14, 2005

ScarySquirrelMan Will Be Up A Tree Until Further Notice

as if i wasn't already. the dreaded moving date speeds ever closer. i finally have a moving company to ship my pitifully few pieces of furniture and ghastly many baseball trading cards ( retirement fund). i still don't have a place to live up there in the Great Northwest, but am working towards remedying that. my BMW still sits in the driveway looking at me with its huge Aryan puppy dog eyes as if to say "was ist los? hast du gone completely verkacht?" as i try to sell it and drop the price almost daily. eventually, the price will be so low i'll go into debt when someone actually buys it. and probably owe them lunch, too.
anyway, it's become fairly obvious by now to all of my thousands of readers (dear, dear little people) that i am become a bit busy. patience, my preciouses. patience. parting is such sweet sorrow. but we shall reunite, you and i. in a land much greener, a land much wetter, a land much fishier. where the skanks are real animals and everybody knows their names.
until then, buck up little fellas. and watch out for falling coconuts.

(update) i meant skinks, not skanks. and, uh, upon reflection, i don't think there are any up there. so, i'm going to leave the original spelling intact and hope there are some of the former instead.

Monday, November 07, 2005

In that vein, I feel I have something to offer

i been tagged. by APJ no less. kind of fun even though i had to actually count my posts by hand.
the rules:
1. Go into your archives.
2. Find your 23rd post.
3. Post the fifth sentence (or closest to it).
4. Post the text of the sentence in your blog along with these instructions.
5. Tag five other people to do the same thing.

"from 7/12/05 is the context of the 5th sentence" that is the title:

That's a goddam goodlooking sandwich
she's eating all alone
enough for me and the twin I never had
and I'll have it too
if I have to break both
her glazed face and her diamond teeth
my last repast
paisley pastrami and
lettuce so latticed that it
couldn't hold its folds
ain't sittin' so pretty
like two lovers in love should
I'll break her fucking arms
the one holding the food
and the one holding his wood
and he looks like a guy
who can't get it up without-
goddam that's a goodlooking sandwich
grease slips soft and over
her busy little lips
red red meat and moist moist green
shoving their way past her gullet
musky dusky cheese and wet dripping
au jus
a Picasso of a poorboy
a thick quick slice of Van GoghI'll break her arms
both fucking one of them
just to force it whole
down her throat
it's that goddam goodlooking a sandwich.

who am i going to tag? dunno. mongo only pawn in Game of Life.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

And Now For The "News"

Love it, absolutely love it. This soap opera will go for at least three seasons and will draw an audience of none after the first few episodes. but it's well acted, dynamic, great directors and shows the promise of a dead body or two.

well, at least Kerry figured it out (unlike Gore), but that cuts no ice when the Democrats had four years in which to ensure that this never happened again. in fact, why would one want a president who couldn't press for the truth when treason is on the line?

this article states that republicans don't like eminent domain. huh? in my city of fresno, the reps take to eminent domain like a duck to water. it's how one does business. never mind the historical buildings. it's how all pols do business when it comes to ensuring "renewed interest" in a crappy part of town. doesn't matter if it george bush or anyone else. the congress passed a bill making it easier to invoke this policy and all cities are taking advantage of it as quickly as they can.

Eviction Notice

for those of you so bored you actually check in on my blog to see what i have to poop about i'm sorry to say that i will be a mite busy in the coming weeks to maintain a consistent whine from here. i have chosen to move to poulsbo, washington within a month. so, i will be involved in boxing up, throwing out, selling off and giving away whatall i can in order to lighten my burden during the actual drive up there. it's a very exciting and scary time for me, but i hope to be back to my usual curmudgeonly self sometime in mid-december after i've established myself up in the Great Northwest where the rain is deep and the women Norwegian.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

need a diversion from what is truly the essence of our current administration (i.e. outing an undercover government employee for political gain and then letting subordinates lie about it to the FBI and a grand jury)? okay, but it's a quickie. alito (the new supreme court nominee) thinks the following two rulings are okay:
1) strip searching a 10-year-old girl, and
2) that a married woman must receive the permission of her husband before receiving an abortion.
look it up. 'nuff said. now, let's get back to outing karl "seig heil" rove and dick "lech mich am aschlach" cheney. the bushbaby we won't ever be able to touch, because i believe he really doesn't have a clue what's going on. other than that he has actually had to start watching television to get his news.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Oh, Happy Friggin' Halloween To Me!!!!!!!!!!

from ABC NEWS comes nothing but the sweetest aroma of dead skunk this boy has ever laid nose to (yesyesyesyesyespleasegodletthisbethereason

Time Reporter Says He Learned Agent's Identity From Rove

Matthew Cooper Says I. Lewis Libby Confirmed Information

Oct. 31 2005 — - One of the reporters at the center of the investigation into the leak of the identity of an undercover CIA officer, says he first learned the agent's name from President Bush's top political advisor, Karl Rove.
Time magazine reporter Matt Cooper also said today in an interview with "Good Morning America," that the vice president's chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, confirmed to him that Ambassador Joseph Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, was a covert CIA operative.
A grand jury charged Libby on Friday with five felonies alleging obstruction of justice, perjury to a grand jury and making false statements to FBI agents. If convicted, he could face a maximum of 30 years in prison and $1.25 million in fines. Libby was not charged with the crime that the grand jury was created to investigate -- specifically, who leaked the name of Plame to reporters in 2003. Rove has not been charged.
Wilson, who went to Nigeria in 2002 to investigate whether or not the country was supplying Iraq with uranium to make weapons of mass destruction, opposed the war. He said he found no evidence of such an exchange in an op-ed in The New York Times. Wilson has argued that the Bush administration revealed his wife's identity in order to silence his opposition to the war.
"There is no question. I first learned about Valerie Plame working at the CIA from Karl Rove," Cooper said.
Libby has since claimed that he heard the Plame rumors from other reporters. Cooper disputed that version of events. "I don't remember it happening that way," he said. "I was taking notes at the time and I feel confident."
If a trial goes ahead, Cooper said he would name Rove as his source of the information.
"Before I spoke to Karl Rove I didn't know Mr. Wilson had a wife and that she had been involved in sending him to Africa."

Saturday, October 29, 2005

yes, virginia, there really is a traitor

want a good timeline of how our administration fucked themselves into a "wagons drawn into a circle" sort of thing while them damn unpatriotic liberals fling arrows at their buttocks? read this from the washington post.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

In Memorium: Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks died today at the age of 92. While some will claim she was merely doing what she was told to by militant blacks and was no forward-thinking hero, remember that she was the one who agreed to take her life in her own hands and make a stand. She could have said "no". She could very rightly have said that it was too dangerous for a black woman to make such a public demonstration of defiance. But she didn't. She was a simple living person who chose to take on the establishment. She chose to say "no" not to possibly foolhardy bravery, but to foolhardy ignorance. So, light a candle, say a prayer of thanks and remember to give that "seat on the bus" to someone less fortunate than you.

Friday, October 21, 2005

JMill Doin' The Perp Walk, Journo-Style

Liar, liar, pants on fire.

Tom Stall Scores Again!

(October 15, 2005) Indicted House Majority Leader Tom DeLay today released a video entitled “Earle’s Gone Wild” in what he described as the first phase of the “Mother of all smear campaigns” launched against Texas prosecutor Ronnie Earle, who brought conspiracy and money laundering charges against him.
(omigod, this is like so funny)

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Life Update

For those of you who know me and/or actually read my tripe, it's time to update you on my life situation. I will be flying up to Washington this Sunday evening to look at the Poulsbo lab for my company and meet the staff there. My bosses have decided (quite wisely, I might add) that they can't afford to let me work for another company (the usual story: skeletons, mob hits and all that). So, they are paying for the flight, hotel room, rental car and food. I'll return Monday night late. What's going on is that I posted my resume on and suddenly different companies were very interested in my talents. And I made it known that I wouldn't mind relocating to Washington (love the weather, seasons, culture, produce, snow, real fires in real fireplaces, the fact that spring is announced not by birds but by comely young women peeling off their clothes to show lots of leg and arm and neck and collarbone in public...makes a guy appreciate females anew each and every year). I lived in Seattle for 9 years, so I know.
Anyway, my company is ready to offer me management of the lab up there. I really like working where I'm at, but there is no room for growth. I am a technician who has reached most of my limits as such. And a very good friend is my manager at present, so I would never do anything to get his job. Hence, the only way to stretch my wings is to move to another lab or company.
Also, I got the weirdest email about my car. I have been told to consider the BMW sold and to pull my ad. Further, a check will be sent to me and I will deduct my price plus $100, then transfer the balance to the representative who will pick up the car. I'm down with that. There is one ethical dilemma, though. When this gentleman emailed me previously expressing interest, he asked me my final price. I had decided to drop it by $1000 and told him so. This was two or three days ago. Today he sent me three emails. The middle one asked me what my final price was (even though he had decided to buy it already). I'm thinking of sticking to the original price, because that is what is still showing on the car ad website AND I have received two other emails expressing interest at that price. I have not responded to that particular email. I feel that if he is wheeling and dealing and not reading his emails, then perhaps it's my call and reverting to the original asking price is ethically okay. Help me out on that one, would you folks? Especially since his first email of the day said he was going to send me a check for $5,500, but the third email said he was going to send me one for $7,500. Plus, I can tell this car is not for him. I can tell he is a reseller and most likely will be selling it in Europe (he's an English bloke who will be over there on business while his rep picks it up and I think the oversize of the check is for shipping to Europe). Either way, whoohoo for me. Thinking of moving has me all atizzy about what to keep, what not to keep, how to move it, where to move it (if I don't a place rented before I get there) and what to do with a second car I don't drive. He has one week to send me the check.
What a day. Hope yours was as weird as mine.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

So much for Pain Management

When did the party of small government become its evil twin? quite a long time ago, actually. the evil twin, however, is still very much a growth industry.

And Dick Seemed Like Such A Nice Guy

(from the U.S. News)
Sparked by today's Washington Post story that suggests Vice President Cheney's office is involved in the Plame-CIA spy link investigation, government officials and advisers passed around rumors that the vice president might step aside and that President Bush would elevate Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Cheney clips right-wing objections (10/5/05)
Press fumes over Bush timing (10/4/05)
Standing by DeLay, somewhat (9/29/05)
DeLay indicted in Texas probe (9/28/05)
More from Washington Whispers
More from Nation & World
"It's certainly an interesting but I still think highly doubtful scenario," said a Bush insider. "And if that should happen," added the official, "there will undoubtedly be those who believe the whole thing was orchestrated – another brilliant Machiavellian move by the VP."
Said another Bush associate of the rumor, "Yes. This is not good." The rumor spread so fast that some Republicans by late morning were already drawing up reasons why Rice couldn't get the job or run for president in 2008.
"Isn't she pro-choice?" asked a key Senate Republican aide. Many White House insiders, however, said the Post story and reports that the investigation was coming to a close had officials instead more focused on who would be dragged into the affair and if top aides would be indicted and forced to resign.
"Folks on the inside and near inside are holding their breath and wondering what's next," said a Bush adviser. But, he added, they aren't focused on the future of the vice president. "Not that, at least not seriously," he said.

John Nichols Tue Oct 18, 1:08 PM ET
The Nation -- Well, of course, the investigation of who leaked
CIA agent Valerie Plame's name -- violating the federal law that bars the "outing" of intelligence operatives -- has come around to Vice President
Dick Cheney' name. While it may be news to the Washington Post -- which headlined a breathless report on Tuesday: "Cheney's Office Is A Focus in Leak Case" -- the fact is that Cheney and his aides have been likely suspects from day one.
No prominent member of the administration had more to lose as a result of the 2003 revelation by Plame's husband, former Ambassador Joe Wilson, that the White House's pre-war claims regarding
Iraq's weapons of mass destruction had been inflated than did Cheney -- who, to a far greater extent than
George Bush, had a hand in shaping the arguments for going to war, plugged them in media appearances and defended them after all evidence suggested his pronouncements had been wrong. It is important to recall that, while Bush may have deliberately fuzzed the facts in his 2003 State of the Union address, it was Cheney who leapt off the cliff of speculation with the pre-war declaration that, "We know
Saddam Hussein's been absolutely devoted to trying to acquire nuclear weapons, and we believe he has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons."
No key player in the administration was more at odds with the
Central Intelligence Agency than Cheney. Indeed, Cheney's badgering of the agency to come up with "evidence" of Iraqi WMDs and al-Qaeda connections was so aggressive -- he regularly stormed into the CIA headquarters to demand a briefing and then, when the information did not fit his biases, demanded that someone else brief him -- that members of the House Intelligence Committee complained in a reprimanding letter, "These visits are unprecedented. Normally, vice presidents, including yourself, receive regular briefings from (the) CIA in your office and have a CIA officer on permanent detail. There is no reason to make personal visits to the CIA."
No top office within the administration was better positioned than Cheney's to gather the information that was used to attack Wilson and his wife and to peddle that information to the press. In fact, as Joe Wilson told me in an interview about the leaking of his wife's name that we did early in 2004, "With respect to who actually leaked the information, there are really only a few people -- far fewer than the president let on when he said there are a lot of senior administration officials -- who could have done it. At the end of the day, you have to have the means, the keys to the conversations at which somebody might drop my wife's name -- deliberately or not -- a national security clearance, and a reason to be talking about this. When you look at all that, there are really very few people who exist at that nexis between national security and foreign policy and politics. You can count them, literally, on two hands."
Wilson added that, without a doubt, "the vice president is one of those people."
And no one, repeat no one, in Washington is known to be more vindictive than Dick Cheney. So the notion that Cheney would not only have been aware of but in fact delighted in punishing Wilson by ruining the career of the ambassador's wife is entirely plausible. By all accounts, special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald is investigating that prospect as his long examination of crimes that may have been committed in relation to the Plame leak draws to a close.
Does this mean that the vice president will be indicted by the federal grand jury that is currently examining the actions of White House political czar Karl Rove and, more importantly, Cheney Chief of Staff I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby?
Don't bet on it.
Libby is blood-oath, fall-on-the-sword loyal to Cheney. A Reagan-era State Department hand and Congressional staffer who came to know his future boss when Cheney was serving in Congress during the 1980s, Libby went with Cheney to George H. W. Bush's Defense Department -- serving Secretary of Defense Cheney as Principal Deputy Under Secretary for Strategy and Resources and Deputy Under Secretary for Policy. Libby was then a founder of the neo-conservative Project for a New American Century, which promoted the vision of American Empire that Cheney and his staff had cooked up in their controversial draft Defense Policy Guidance statement during their final days at the
Pentagon. And when Cheney returned to the corridors of power, as vice president, Libby was at his side.
But the Cheney-Libby partnership is not merely a power and policy connection. Their relationship is more father-son than boss-surrogate. Libby vacations with Cheney at the vice president's $2.9 million villa in Wyoming, and Libby's access is such that he is welcome to invite friends and compatriots along to enjoy the skiing near Jackson Hole.
The likelihood that Libby would give up a relationship that has buttered his bread for the better part of a quarter century is even more remote than the likelihood that Rove would turn on Bush.
Yet, no one who knows about how Cheney and Libby operate will doubt that the two men had no secrets from one another during the period when the attacks on the CIA, in general, and Wilson and Plame, in particular, were taking place.
The vice president is a famously hands-on player. He personally requested information about claims that the Iraqis were attempting to obtain uranium from African countries -- the issue that Wilson examined in 2002, when he was dispatched to Africa and found that the claims were not credible. And while Cheney now says that he knew nothing of the report that Wilson produced before the war, the former ambassador has never believed him.
"If you are senior enough to ask the question, you are senior enough to get a very specific response," said Wilson. "In addition to the circular report that was sent around as a consequence of my trip, I have every confidence that one way or another the vice president was briefed as well." Yet, it was the vice president who continued to claim, long after Bush had dropped the line, that Saddam Hussein was a nuclear threat. And Cheney always went much further than Bush or others in the administration when making that claim. Indeed, it was Cheney who specifically stated prior to the Congressional votes on authorizing the use of force in Iraq that, Hussein had "resumed his efforts to acquire nuclear weapons." Cheney claimed in the same speech that, "Armed with an arsenal of these weapons of terror, and seated atop 10 percent of the world's oil reserves, Saddam Hussein could then be expected to seek domination of the entire Middle East, take control of the world's energy supplies, directly threaten American friends throughout the region, and subject the United States or any other nation to nuclear blackmail."
It is certainly reasonable to argue that Cheney had more reason to strike out at Wilson than anyone else in the administration when the former ambassador revealed the truth in a New York Times opinion piece that appeared in the summer of 2003. And, while Cheney may not have done the deed directly, it is comic to suggest that the vice president -- who was in constant contact with both Libby and Rove around the time of the leak -- could have been unaware of any serious effort to discredit Wilson by "outing" his wife as a CIA agent.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Normally, I'd say my life is so-so. Not much movement anywhere, just hanging tough and wondering where the next punch is coming from. You know, weathering the storm or the lulls between. But something exciting has happened. I put my resume on the internet and I got hits (not punches). Two outfits contacted me. One was a recruiter for a San Jose firm that's looking to pay someone $45,000-50,000 a year to do what I do. The other was a regional heavyweight. I turned down the San Jose gig, would mean moving to San Jose. The second I submitted my real resume to and am hoping they would like to talk. I don't know that I would accept that offer either ( I do like my current employer). However, my current employer has an automatic printout anytime an applicant puts a resume on and it matches up with their search words. So, they saw it. And they freaked. It's now possible that I will be offered a promotion and transfer to Poulsbo, Washington. I want to go back to WA if possible and financially feasible. So, stirring the pot has been good. I found out that it's a major seller's market for someone like me. There are no qualified technicians out there to handle all aspects of an engineering lab. Makes me feel good finally for sticking this out for over 5 years and getting as many certifications as I can.
Also, that bad BMW I own finally got a hit on Who knows? If someone wants to buy it they'll find it to be a sweet, sweet ride.
So, I'm happy as a restless soul can be. Which is what I think I now have figured myself to be. I guess I always was, but thought I was just unhappy or hard to satisfy. Perhaps, I just refuse to settle when I think something on the horizon is calling to me. perhaps i simply refuse to commit. whatever it is and whatever happens, I now that change is the only constant. And, once again, I rush to embrace it.