Wattree on Mandela: Homeward Bound
Richard Day: Cold in Minnesota, and in the Hearts of Men
Ramona On Martin Bashir
Ramona used to write nice feature pieces for newspapers and magazines, along with columns that, yes, got testy once in a while (Ronald Reagan was president. What could she do?) but were basically and overall nice.
But then. . .
. . .then came the hanky-panky and subsequent impeachment of Bill Clinton! Then Bush v. Gore! Hanging Chads! Katherine Harris! Supreme Court busy bodies! 9/11! War with Iraq! (Iraq??) The right wing! The religious right! The TEA PARTY, for God's sake!
Whatever she is today is the fault of all of the above. She is not to blame.
If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch you must first invent the universe. Carl Sagan
The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity. Dorothy Parker
"Corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow ... money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands" - Abraham Lincoln
It has always seemed strange to me... the things we admire in men, kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling, are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest, sharpness, greed, acquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest, are the traits of success. And while men admire the quality of the first they love the produce of the second. - John Steinbeck
So yesterday was the day Hillary Clinton finally testified on the Benghazi tragedy at hearings in both the House and the Senate. The Republicans have been after her for months now to get it done, but things happened, including Influenza and her fall and subsequent hospitalization for a concussion in late December. (A clear stall, wicked lady. Hmmpph!)
No surprise, was it, that if the Republicans pushed that hard to get her on the stand, it would be theater less like Shakespeare's Globe and more like Gonzo Gaiety. Satisfying, isn't it, that they didn't disappoint?
Monday, January 21, 2013 - 7 AM:
As I'm about to begin the fifth year of my blog on this morning of Barack Obama's second Inauguration (held on the anniversary of Martin Luther King's birth, a most appropriate and fitting confluence), I feel I should write something so powerful, so moving, so wise, nothing anyone ever writes about this day will even come close.
For weeks now, since the tragic murders of 20 sweet children and six dedicated educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, (one month ago today, and that is some sad anniversary) we've been in the middle of some serious, long overdue gun control arguments. The gun nuts see any form of gun control as "an infringement of their right to bear arms". (Oh my God, I can barely type that one more time. It's so stupid. Even in quotes, it's stupid. But I must go on.)
Just two weeks from today, on the 21th of January, 2013, Barack Obama will be inaugurated for the second time as president of these United States.
Obama, as you may remember, is our first half-black president and the man so loathed by his political archenemies, for four full years jillions of dollars destined for desperately needed domestic growth have been held hostage while those jackals were busy working at destroying his presidency. All so that he would never, ever get a second chance at under-privatizing America.
Wishing you all a merry Christmas season, and all the joys it brings. Happy holidays and peace to all, including those who wanted a war so badly they made one up.
Will it spoil everything if I pass along this gentle reminder? Christmas is a time of joy and good will for everyone; all ages, all regions, all religions. Those scrooges who want to pretend there's a war going on over it, have, sadly, forgotten what it was like to be a child.
After every major gun-inflicted tragedy we're told by the pro-everything-that-shoots bunch that it's too soon to be talking about gun control. We hear again that guns don't kill people, it's the people misusing the guns who kill people. We hear that they could just as well be using knives or garrotes or box cutters or poison or 3,000 pound vehicles.
It's Saturday, the day after what will forever be known as the Sandy Hook School murders. Yesterday Adam Lanza, a 20-year-old man, broke into Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut and shot to death six adults and 20 small children.
We're all in shock and looking for answers. We're crying, grieving, mourning, and we want answers. We want gun control that actually controls guns. We want people not to blame the guns but the shooter. We want to know the names of the victims, and, as I write this, all news stations are on alert, awaiting a press conference where those names will finally be announced.
So it has happened. Remember the other day when I wrote that Michigan had become a Right-to-Work state? It's not that I'm prescient or anything, announcing a done deal on Saturday when it didn't actually become law until yesterday (Tuesday), when Govnerd Ricky signed the two "Hasta la Vista, Union" bills hustled through the Republican-led legislature in a dazzling demonstration of warp speed. No, it's just that I've come to know those guys. No amount of talking, cajoling, coercing or begging was going to change the course of that bloody action, no matter what. [Read more]
Last week Michigan's Republican-majority legislature, with no committee meetings, no floor debate, in a rush to get this done before January when their control lessens, voted to add my beautiful state to a growing number of states--23 of them so far--that have been downgraded to what some have been led to believe is an assurance of a "Right-to-Work".
Something has gone seriously haywire with the Republican Party. Once it was the party of pragmatic Main Street businessmen in steel-rimmed spectacles who decried profligacy and waste, were devoted to their communities and supported the sort of prosperity that raises all ships. They were good-hearted people who vanquished the gnarlier elements of their party, the paranoid Roosevelt-haters, the Earthers and Prohibitionists, the antipapist antiforeigner element. The genial Eisenhower was their man, a genuine American hero of D-Day, who made it OK for reasonable people to vote Republican. He brought the Korean War to a stalemate, produced the Interstate Highway System, declined to rescue the Frenc [Read more]