Thursday, April 26, 2007

hit me in the hokie

Mr. Boortz,
I have heard your whining today about the New York Times. They said some unfortunate "bumper" music on your show was "his choice".
Whatever happened to personal responsibility?
Ok, maybe Royal and an automated system chose the music. That does not matter to the listening audience. To them, YOU are the show, and you need to be responsible for the contents.
If the NY Times were to print a correction, it would only focus attention about how you do not take responsibility for the contents of your show, but go whining about Liberal attacks on talk radio when there is a problem
BTW, you might consider getting a bumper music program where you can screen the music.
On a lighter note, the other day you were discussing the mental problems of a Korean mass killer. At the program break, WSB ran a promo spot about your "personality disorder". While the Liberal media may have missed it, I thought it was amusing.
You were whining again today about the New York Times. You even had a caller say it was unfair, there is a liberal in California that plays clever bumper music and no one complains.
This is bad form. You need to quit whining and accept responsibility for your show.
I have been paying attention to your bumper music. Yesterday, you followed a discussion about the FairTax(tm) with "Stuck in the middle with you" by Stealer's Wheel. That is a poetic computer system you have there.
I am posting this letter at my blog. Blogging is talk radio without the busy signal. For more details, go to


There is a lot of chatter these days about "defeat" in Iraq. Some are calling a certain crowd the "defeatocrats".
As it now stands, we have a military force eight time zones away. This force is consuming large amounts of blood, oil, and money.
If we keep the force there, it will cause ill will for America, cause civilians to die, prop up a questionable regime, and bring benefits to Iran...none of which is earning America a return on its vast investment.
If we withdraw the force, it will cause ill will for America, cause civilians to die, and bring benefits to Iran... none of which will earn America a return on its vast investment.
In other words, we are stuck. We are like a heroin addict, who keeps shooting vast amounts of money and drugs , only to ward off withdrawal pains. We are caught between Iraq and a hard place.
We cannot stay. We cannot withdraw. That sounds like defeat to me, and we are already there.

Typically, I steam potatoes and corn for breakfast. While I am eating the corn and half the potatoes, I steam some greens, which becomes lunch, along with the rest of the potatoes.
If that sounds dull, don't worry. I am not going to share. McDonalds is always ready to take your money and rot your innards.
So, that leaves a pot of water, with vegetable innards steamed into it. Tonight, I heated this, and cooked a Pasta Dish. Something called Tomato Parmesan, which I have never tried before.
The sauce is delicious.
The pasta is angel hair spaghetti, which is a giant pain to eat.
Why can't all pasta be a spoon size noodle? It is so much easier to eat, rather than the ordeal of fitting spaghetti onto a spoon. Also, noodles are spelled the way it looks, and spaghetti makes no spelling sense at all.

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

random excess

Shirley Phelps Roper and Margie Phelps were on the Mike Gallagher radio show. In case you didn't know, they are the daughters of Fred Phelps, pastor of the Westboro Baptist Church.
S&M are just as rude as mainstream Jesus Worshippers. They did not hesitate to interrupt and shout down anyone who called into the show. Of course, they really believe what they say, and they quote the bible to support all of it. To them, the grieving family members at a funeral are an appropriate audience for their message.
After a commercial break, a station change was in order. The rock and roll oldies station was playing "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" by Elton John. There is a poetic symmetry there.
A Jesus Worship blog (which has banned me) also tackles the issue of preaching at funerals. His reasoning is remarkably similar to the Phelps sisters. They feel that their "message" is far more important than the feelings of the grieving loved ones.
The pyrodude goes on to say "The real crime, the insanity, is when Christians --- should ever let ourselves be intimidated into silence." Maybe he could find another way to prove his toughness, rather than creating ill will for Jesus. With people who are in pain due to the death of a loved one.
The Phelps sisters have more than proved how" tough" they can be. For Jesus.

Later in the day, another radio whiner (Micheal Medved) was talking about a book comparing the lives of liberals and conservatives. A caller said that book proved conservatives were happier than liberals were, and why didn't the mainstream media report this?
Now, you can make an argument for just about anything, as S&M displayed earlier. Without reading the book in question, there are lots of questions...semantics, methodology, use of statistics, use of quotes from questionable authorities...that you can raise about the thesis that conservatives are happier than liberals. I don't see it in my life, from the people that I know. But, there are lots of intangibles and opportunities to lie here, so I may pass on giving the matter much thought.
I was pondering this on my drive home. Normally, I get off I285 at Roswell Road, which has traffic, but is usually manageable. Today, I was thinking about happiness, and missed my exit. The next exit, Glenridge Road, is next to Highway 400, and has a lot of cars waiting around, and is much more difficult to use for exiting than Roswell Road. Fifteen minutes, and an illegal ride in the emergency lane, later, I was on my way home.
This did not make me happy.

While washing my lunch dishes, I heard the TV in the living room. There was a hearing about the death of Pat Tillman.
Mr. Tillman was a professional athlete who joined the service, and was killed in Iraq. He was killed by "friendly fire" (accidentally by his own army). This happens in war, probably more than is generally realized. The problem here, is a cover up by the military, and spreading a story of heroism to his family.
Mr. Tillman's mother was testifying. She said, "This is an ugly war".
That is more powerful than anything Harry Reid or Cindy Sheehan has said. And it is the truth

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Thursday, April 19, 2007


Sometimes it just doesn't pay to scroll down the screen.
Today is the kind of day that makes springtime in Atlanta a gift. Just warm enough to be pleasant, azaleas and dogwoods rampant, the oppressive heat of summer is just a few weeks away.
Lunchtime is waiting when I get back to the shop. I have a bit of salsa in the bottom of a jar. Mixing a bit of water in the salsa, I pour the combination over the ramen noodles before microwave insertion. One should innovate at least once a day.
Coming inside, I look at Kikoshouse
He is not afraid to tell an unflattering story about himself.
The story is about including a reference to a large local muslim population into a story about the Oklahoma City bombing, which was 12 years ago today. In the aftermath of that tragedy, there was much speculation about terrorism, and what we should do to the country responsible. Of course, the country responsible for that was the United States.
And so, I read that story, and the quotes from the blogosphere, and continue to recklessly scroll downward, Then...
Kitty Carlisle Hart 1910-2007. Born Catherine Conn, September 3 1910, in New Orleans, LA.
I was at a sparsely attended pot luck supper a few months ago, where some of the eaters discussed going to an appearance by Ms. Hart. I innocently said " Is she still alive?", and was gently reminded that she was making a local appearance soon.
I am of that "certain age" that remembers "Whats My Line". Of course, It was a big deal for me to stay up until 10:30, when the show was over.
The green room of that show must have been something. Ms. Hart (then known as Kitty Carlisle),was married to a famous Playwright and was a presence in her own right. Bennett Cerf was a publisher, and author of humorous books. Dorothy Kilgallen was a piece of work...and that is all I am going to say. ( Somewhere in the afterlife, Frank Sinatra is sucking on her chin).
Last week it was Kurt Vonnegut. This week Kitty Carlisle Hart. I may have to quit reading Kikoshouse

There is a certain synchronicity here, with the Oklahoma City bombing and the Virginia Tech shooting. I really don’t have much to add to the current onslaught of punditry and message mongering. I do find it ironic that we get so bent out of shape about 32 wasted students, while hundreds die everyday in Babylon. And we scarcely notice, let alone consider our responsibility.
And lets not forget, American Idol was SAVED.
My favorite radio whiner, "squeal", has been in rare form this week. Meaning, it is not well done, and is performed on a medium.
(or msm. Much as he hates it, he is employed by Cox Enterprises, which is mainstream) I will spare you his blithering, but he did mention a piece by Mark Steyn. Mr. Steyn is a writer, with a wretched limey accent, who is making the rounds of the talk shows. I suppose he has a book to promote. Today, there is a piece somewhere about "The culture of.... darn short term memory loss. It was something about people not defending themselves, about giving in to authority too easily, or something. When I am home tonight I will look for details. As efficient as the internet is, I may even find a link.
At any rate, the gist of this is that americans don’t defend themselves, but allow themselves to be victimized.
Now, when the president starts touting questionable information about the next hitler having wmds’, and railroads us into a self destructive war that we cannot win, what do the people ...and press... of this country do. To our shame and regret, enough of them said, "go for it" to find us neck deep in a Babylonian quagmire.
I suspect this is not what Mr. accent meant by this, but it is how I read it.
Also, regarding the synchronicity of Oklahoma City and "squeal". In the backwash of the OKC bombing, I saw "squeal" host a call in show (on CNN!) regarding the tragedy. He made the statement that you should never believe anything he said, but that he is just trying to make you think. I saw a smirk on his face when he said that, which told me that he had very little respect for his audience.

I will spare you the details of the rest of my day. The high point was being harassed by my supervisor for going to the restroom between runs in rush hour traffic. At one point, I did not go over 5 mph for three miles.
So I get home, and try to tie up a few loose ends about what I wrote earlier.
To start, Mark Steyn is apparently Canadian, though he does sound British.
The article he posted this morning was "A culture of Passivity".
Yes, passivity, the word I couldn't remember earlier. And yes, that is a great word for our nation, and those in it who replied to Mr. Bush's call to battle in Babylon, all while turning off any critical thought. Yes, passivity.
While I was looking for Mr. Steyn's comments, I found this:
More cruelty from right-wing crackpots
Nothing like blaming the victims.

The difference between liberals and conservatives, Chapter 973: While liberal Salon readers were debating the decorum of criticizing the president on a national day of mourning over the Virginia Tech massacre, conservative bomb throwers wasted no time criticizing ... the victims.

The rest of the piece is worth reading.
Yea, there is a lot of "what I would have done" chatter going on now. It is worthless. You don't know how you would react until you have to make a choice. This is going to be a future post, I really mean that.
And finally, while looking at national review online for the "passivity" post, I found an obituary for Pat Buckley. She was the wife of William F. Buckley and the mother of Christopher Buckley. She was a fixture in New York Society, a noted wearer of the latest fashions, and admired by many who had much less regard for her husband.
Spell check for this feature:
Conn...coon, con, cnn, cone, connie, coin, conk, coo
whats..whets, whites, what's, whams, whaps, what
Bennet...bennett, bent, mom, mum, M&M, ism
hitler...hitter, hither, hitless, whittler, hatless, halter, whiter, whither, whittier, hilt

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

be here now

You see a lot of the word "believe" in our culture.
The verb is put out there, and if you do not obey the command you are a terrible person. There is a feeling that to Believe is a good thing to do, that you "have to believe in something".
The dominant religion in our culture is Jesus worship, aka christianity. JW is based on beliefs, rather than practices. This contrasts with other forms of spirtual discipline, in which the practices are the core of the experiences.
I have come to wonder whether "believe" is an appropriate path to approach the knowledge of g-d. After all, if something exists because you believe in it, could that mean it does not exist for a non believer?After all, no one doubts the existence of the four, air, fire, and water. Shouldn't g-d be as obvious as the four elements, and as pervasive on this planet?
But this is not a discussion about the nature or existence of g-d. ( to say that g-d is dead presupposes that she was at some time alive).
There is a bit of grafitti that is relevant. G-d is dead...Nietzsche Nietzsche is dead....G-d.

Back to believe, and my opinions. If you are not interested, just look at the pictures, or go download pornography.
Believe is a verb, and the act of believing involves belief. If you break down the word, it becomes be-lie-ve. To be, another verb meaning to exist. No hamlet jokes , please. The next three letters are lie, or something which is not true...the opposite of believe. The third part is ve, which may mean something in some language or abbreviation, but doesn't do much to help in this case.
Of course, if you go to the noun form...belief... you get be-lie-f. Exist, fib, and fornicate. Sounds like a weekend plan for many of us.
Still, this doesn't inspire me very much...a word with lie in the middle. A word that means truth, with a lie in the middle.

A good comparison is provided by Baba Ram Dass. Richard Allpert was once the sidekick of Timothy Leary, until he got tired of chemical consciousness and went to India. There he met some people who showed him a different way to do things. He returned to America and wrote "Be Here Now". BeHereNow is a mantra of sorts. When he met his mentor, he wanted to tell "war stories", discuss texts, and talk talk talk. His mentor said, just be here now. Be Here Now.
Now, BEHERENOW is a good contrast to BELIEF. Exist where you are, when you are, compared to exist, tell falsehoods, and screw.
Be Here Now is a remarkable text. A central theme is the dangers of desire and attachment. Now, I am saturated with Americas "believe and consume" culture. Nevermind the tenth commandment:thou shalt not covet. While I recognize many of the shortcomings, I am also comforted by the material abundance. Be Here Now teaches that there is another way, which is good to know. I pulled my copy off the shelf when I was starting to write this, and may have to take another shot at reading it. Still, just to think Be Here Now has always made me feel better. This is a pleasant contrast to the way thinking about jesus makes me feel sad.
Be Here Now should not be confused with the sign above the urinal, Pee Here Now.

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Kurt Vonnegut

I will try to get through this without using a certain phrase, but it is going to be tough.
Kurt Vonnegut died this morning.
People who don't read have not a clue to the bonding that occurs between an author and his readers. Other writers may have sold more copies, and inspired more movies, but few have the link to the reader that Mr. Vonnegut did.
When I was going through one of his books, I found myself thinking like he wrote.
His basic message.... that as human beings, we were worthy of kindness, if for no other reason than we are human as vital today as it ever has been.
Once he spoke at Emory University. The next day, the fishwrapper printed a picture of him. A black man was behind him, and due to the lighting, all you could see of him were his eyes and teeth.
In "god bless you Mr. rosewater" a lady was playing a record, and talking about how much she enjoyed classical music. It turns out the record was a 33 rpm disc played at 45 rpm. You of the cd generation, get someone to explain it to you.
In "slaughterhouse five", the beings of tralfamadore stated that they had been to 37 planets, and had contact with 168 more. Only on earth was there talk of free will.
(The numbers are not exact quotes, hence no quote marks) In a dirty bookstore somewhere, there is a book by Kilgore Trout waiting to be purchased. I got one of those "art books" once. It was about "erotic" statues and whatnot from the Greek and roman eras. The color separation did not work well, and there is a red image, next to a blue image, next to a green image, of many of the sculptures.
Kurt Vonnegut was born the same year as my mother, who never smoked a cigarette. Mr. Vonnegut seldom stopped smoking, and he lived 8 years longer. Frank Sinatra was born a few weeks before my father, and lived 6 years longer. No lifestyle comparisons will be made here.
I look at the pictures of him, and I realize that, even though his face is a roadmap of time, not a single gray hair can be seen. Is Grecian formula at play here?
Now, as I am posting this, I realize that I need a pic of the man. The one at the top of the page does have gray hair, although not as much as you would expect from an octogenarian.
I also found this quote.
Kurt Vonnegut

Die m***********r, die. The world is rid of a p**s-poor writer and one hell of an altruistic S.O.B. Good riddance.

While this man is entitled to his opinion, I suspect he has not read many of Mr. Vonnegut's books. Or maybe, he read them under "academic compulsion", which can take the fun out of reading anything.

" I will say anything to be funny, often in the most horrible situations" A blogger who does not always appreciate my point of view said that whenever anyone asks me about religion, I make a joke or a sarcastic comment. Maybe this is the appropriate response.
The internet is turning into a Vonnegut quotefest, punctuated by the 11 letter, 4 word phrase that I have steadfastly avoided in this screed.
Another was the laughing and crying were human reactions to situations. I prefer laughing, because there is less cleaning up. Here again, I don’t have the verbatim quote at hand, but will seek to find it before I post this missive. Or maybe not, because there are fewer copyright violations this way.
There is a chart on technorati, showing the number of posts about Kurt Vonnegut for the last thirty days. It is flat, until today, where it goes from zero to 4000...and, when the working bloggers get home tonight and start to comment, will probably go much higher. Death does a great deal for your visibility. I bet the bookstores are installing their displays as we speak.
I will have to work on this when I get home. The computer here does not copy from the internet, and there are too many good quotes not to include in this work. And to think that Mr. Vonnegut could have spent his entire career as a flack for general electric in Schenectady NY.
I will be surprised if I spell that correctly, and look forward to the spell check suggestions.
I spelled Schenectady correctly the first time.
Of course when I do get home, there are things to do, and I post the unabetted lunchtime text after my bedtime. This one hour lunch does have its applications, aside from avoidance of paying overtime.