"The blog has made Glab into a hip town crier, commenting on everything from local politics and cultural happenings to national and international events, all rendered in a colorful, intelligent, working-class vernacular that owes some of its style to Glab’s Chicago-hometown heroes Studs Terkel and Mike Royko." — David Brent Johnson in Bloom Magazine
“Who would have ever thought blacks would get out and support the first black president? Who would have ever thought women would shy away from the party of transvaginal probes? Who would have ever thought gays would work against a party that treated them as immoral and subhuman? Who would have ever thought young people would desert a party that ignored science and hectored on social issues? Who would have ever thought Latinos would scorn a party that expected them to finish up their chores and self-deport?” — Maureen Dowd
YOU AND IRAQ
Comic and politico Aaron Freeman has put out a call for anyone who can honestly say she or he was not taken in by the Bush Administration’s rationalizations for the Iraq War in late 2002 and early 2003.
You remember, don’t you? Georgey-boy, Dick Cheney, Condoleeza Rice, and even Colin Powell stood on their heads to implant the images of bloodthirsty brown people, mushroom clouds, and general panic in our imaginations in order to snow us into attacking the Saddam Hussein regime.
Perhaps the saddest moment of the buildup to war was Secretary of State Powell half-heartedly trying to sell the United Nations General Assembly on “evidence” that Hussein and his wild-eyed pals were thisclose to launching a big one against this holy land.
The funnyman — Freeman, not Bush — wonders why anyone would have doubted the word of the Bushies, considering the fact that most highly intelligent people he knew at the time bought the casus belli hook, line, and sinker.
So, take yourself back some ten years to those glory days of yore. Try to remember what you were thinking at the time. And don’t forget we were only a little more than a year past the 9/11 attacks. Be honest and tell us, in the poll below, if you bought the Bush line or you thought, even as we were gassing up our B-2 Stealth Bombers, that he and his gang were full of shit.
Oh, and leave a comment in the box labeled “Other” explaining why you thought one way or the other.
Thanks in advance.
THE SHORT OF IT
That’s all for today, kiddies. I been working my fingertips to the bone, trying to get the new Ryder magazine and film series website off the ground, along with publisher Peter LoPilato and developer Boice Tomlin. As a result, I feel lazy today.
Remember to stop in at The Book Corner. A few words of advice, though. Do not buy either of Bill O’Reilly’s bestsellers, “Killing Lincoln” and “Killing Kennedy.” Do not buy “50 Shades of Chicken.” And do not buy any of those I-died-and-went-to-heaven books.
Scroll down to Big Mike’s Playtime for more links to things you can do while you’re supposed to be doing something else.
TRYING TO GET A FOOT IN THE DOOR
How weird are the interwebs?
Someone submitted a comment for my approval today. It read: “The clarity in your post is simply nice and i can assume you’re an expert on this subject.” (All sic.)
So far so good, right? The commenter seems to be a fine, perceptive, and noble soul. I like being called an expert on any subject.
The Acknowledged Expert
The comment continues: “Well with your permission let me to grab your feed to keep up to date with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please continue the gratifying work.”
Clearly the commenter is a tad iffy about certain niceties of the English language but that’s alright, he or she possesses admirable taste.
So I tried to find out who this person is. Turns out he or she is from Italy, which explains the Chico Marx patois.
Oh, Those Italians
Then I noticed the commenter’s name. Feet Lovers.
Yup, Feet Lovers runs a website called Foot Worship Fun. Its introduction reads, “There is nothing more beautiful, in a taboo sort of way, than a womans beautiful feet. [Again, all sic.] Her painted toes, the curves, her soft soles and firm heels.”
The home page has tabs for pages entitled, among others, Footsie Babes, Feet in Nylons, and Beautiful Soles.
Banned In Several Countries
I’m not going to link to the site because it’s hardcore porn. You’re on your own, curiosity seekers.
So great, a foot fetishist thinks I’m a terrific blogger. Or, more likely, the whole thing is just a scam to smuggle malware onto The Electron Pencil World Headquarters mainframe.
More specifically, the Republican turn away from science.
Republicans, after all, are leading the march.
To wit: Tennessee this year passed a law allowing public school teachers to prattle in class about “alternative” theories to human evolution and climate change. The law was introduced by a conservative Republican state senator and passed by a veto-proof Republican statehouse majority.
Jesus Rides A Dinosaur
Mooney says a recent study of Americans found that the more highly educated conservatives are, the more they’re likely to declare themselves mistrustful of science and its practitioners. How’s that for a stumper?
When liberals paint their broad brush stroke picture of conservative Republicans who hew to the Bible rather than the textbook, they like to conjure the image of a backwoods yokel with several teeth in his head.
The Tennessee law, after all, was introduced by a legislator whose name is Bo.
So, now liberals (including me, natch) have to rethink their stereotype. Okay, our stereotype. In fact, Tennessee State Senator Bo Watson graduated magna cum laude in biology from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
Bo Watson, Man Of Letters
Mooney calls it “the smart idiot effect.” Educated conservatives who eschew science, Mooney posits, have a commensurate “higher level of political knowledge and engagement.”
Mooney cites another study that indicates the Right over the last 40 or so years has become top-heavy with “‘authoritarians’ — a generally conservative personality type characterized by cognitive rigidity, viewing the world in black-and-white terms, and holding fixed beliefs, often fundamentalist Christian ones….”
And because the scientific method in its purest form is anti-authoritarian, it only made sense that the New Right would see science as the enemy.
“[N]aturally, this led to decreased trust in scientists and their institutions, especially among the most politically attuned conservatives…,” Mooney writes.
The Culture Warriors on the Right, Mooney explains, began creating alternative expert institutions to wage battle against the liberalism of colleges, universities and other scientific institutions. They set up think tanks like the Heritage Foundation and the Cato Institute to churn out a new anti-academic, anti-liberal body of information (and misinformation).
People began to become expert, in other words, in being non-expert.
Sometimes this game we call democracy gets all too confusing.
THESE BOOTS ARE MADE FOR WALKIN’
Here’s how I waste my time. How about you? Share your fave sites with us via the comments section. Just type in the name of the site, not the url; we’ll find them. If we like them, we’ll include them — if not, we’ll ignore them.