TomCat

Aug 312015
 

I just returned from the Urologist’s office.  Everything was routine.  The Lift bus was much more efficient than usual.  Now, I want you to know that I REALLY struggled to resist the temptation.  However…

TCPee

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:44 (average 5:45).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Take:

From Daily Kos: Daily Kos readers are awesome and send awesome emails:

I, ________________________, do solemnly swear to uphold the principles of a socialism-free society and heretofore pledge my word that I shall strictly adhere to the following:

I will complain about the destruction of 1st Amendment Rights in this country, while I am duly being allowed to exercise my 1st Amendment Rights.

I will complain about the destruction of my 2nd Amendment Rights in this country, while I am duly being allowed to exercise my 2nd Amendment rights by legally but brazenly brandishing unconcealed firearms in public.

I will foreswear the time-honored principles of fairness, decency, and respect by screaming unintelligible platitudes regarding tyranny, Nazi-ism, and socialism at public town halls.  Also.

I pledge to eliminate all government intervention in my life.  I will abstain from the use of and participation in any socialist goods and services including but not limited to the following:

  • Social Security
  • Medicare/Medicaid
  • State Children’s Health Insurance Programs (SCHIP)
  • Police, Fire, and Emergency Services
  • US Postal Service
  • Roads and Highways
  • Air Travel (regulated by the socialist FAA)
  • The US Railway System
  • Public Subways and Metro Systems
  • Public Bus and Lightrail Systems
  • Rest Areas on Highways
  • Sidewalks
  • All Government-Funded Local/State Projects (e.g., see Iowa 2009 federal senate appropriations)
  • Public Water and Sewer Services (goodbye socialist toilet, shower, dishwasher, kitchen sink, outdoor hose!)
  • Public and State Universities and Colleges
  • Public Primary and Secondary Schools
  • Sesame Street
  • Publicly Funded Anti-Drug Use Education for Children
  • Public Museums
  • Libraries
  • Public Parks and Beaches
  • State and National Parks
  • Public Zoos
  • Unemployment Insurance
  • Municipal Garbage and Recycling Services
  • Treatment at Any Hospital or Clinic That Ever Received Funding From Local, State or Federal Government (pretty much all of them)
  • Medical Services and Medications That Were Created or Derived From Any Government Grant or Research Funding (again, pretty much all of them)
  • Socialist Byproducts of Government Investment Such as Duct Tape and Velcro (Nazi-NASA Inventions)
  • Use of the Internets, email, and networked computers, as the DoD’s ARPANET was the basis for subsequent computer networking
  • Foodstuffs, Meats, Produce and Crops That Were Grown With, Fed With, Raised With or That Contain Inputs From Crops Grown With Government Subsidies
  • Clothing Made from Crops (e.g. cotton) That Were Grown With or That Contain Inputs From Government Subsidies

If a veteran of the government-run socialist US military, I will forego my VA benefits and insist on paying for my own medical care

I will not tour socialist government buildings like the Capitol in Washington, D.C.

I pledge to never take myself, my family, or my children on a tour of the following types of socialist locations, including but not limited to: 

  • Smithsonian Museums such as the Air and Space Museum or Museum of American History
  • The socialist Washington, Lincoln, and Jefferson Monuments
  • The government-operated Statue of Liberty
  • The Grand Canyon
  • The socialist World War II and Vietnam Veterans Memorials
  • The government-run socialist-propaganda location known as Arlington National Cemetery
  • All other public-funded socialist sites, whether it be in my state or in Washington, DC

I will urge my Member of Congress and Senators to forego their government salary and government-provided healthcare.

I will oppose and condemn the government-funded and therefore socialist military of the United States of America. 

I will boycott the products of socialist defense contractors such as GE, Lockheed-Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics, Raytheon, Humana, FedEx, General Motors, Honeywell, and hundreds of others that are paid by our socialist government to produce goods for our socialist army. 

I will protest socialist security departments such as the Pentagon, FBI, CIA, Department of Homeland Security, TSA, Department of Justice and their socialist employees. 

Upon reaching eligible retirement age, I will tear up my socialist Social Security checks. 

Upon reaching age 65, I will forego Medicare and pay for my own private health insurance until I die.

SWORN ON A BIBLE AND SIGNED THIS DAY OF __________ IN THE YEAR ___.

_____________   _________________________

Signed       Printed Name/Town and State

Perfect for viral email, my friends. You know what to do.

This was just too god not to share!

Cartoon:

0831Cartoon

We can start with the name that fits them all: Hurricane Asshole!

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Aug 302015
 

Almost every week, Republicans join a competition to see who can say the most outlandish things, and in the process, they push the envelope on just how nutty InsaniTEA can become.  I trust that you will believe it, when I tell you that last week was no exception.

Pat Robertson has figured out the culprit for this week’s stock market volatility.

RobertsonHatNot many people are familiar with Pat Robertson’s financial knowhow. Turns out he is an expert on international stock market volatility, and unlike Donald Trump, he does not think it’s all China’s fault. No, the blame for the stock market dive early in the week is both more local and more otherworldly.

According to Robertson, God in his infinite wisdom and abundant free time is messing with the stock market to punish wicked Americans for having legalized abortions.

“We will pay dearly as a nation for this thing going on,” Robertson, having some slight word retrieval problems. By “this thing going on,” he meant the Obama administration’s support for Planned Parenthood and women’s healthcare. “And possibly if we were to stop all this slaughter the judgment of God might be lifted from us. But it’s coming, ladies and gentlemen. We just had a little taste of it in terms of the financial system, but it’s going to be shaken to its core in the next few months, years, or however long it takes and it will hurt every one of us.”

His advice seemed to be to pull your money out of the market and place it in the hands of God, who can be reached care of Pat Robertson, coincidentally.

Inserted from <Alternet>

I have to admit that on very rare occasions, Robertson actually surprises me.  This is one of them.  I felt sure he was going to blame it on gay marriage.  This is only the firth of five Republican nutjobs from last week alone.  Click through for the other four.

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Aug 302015
 

I’m really enjoying the cool weather, but I’m running a bit late, because I have several tasks to complete today.  Tomorrow, I get to spend the morning and early afternoon going to pee in a cup.  It’s routine Urologist appointment time again.  Therefore, please expect only a Personal Update tomorrow, late in the day, and no cards on Care2.  I’ll try to behave and not claw urologist’s TP to shreds, all over the rest room, but its so very tempting! Cat face

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’;s took me 3:00 (average 4:31).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Religious Ecstasy:

0829Broncos19-49ers12

Unfortunately, my fantasy team is getting shredded.  I’ve already lost two starters for the season, and we don’t even start until 9/10.

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos (classic: 4/2014): At some point you have to recognize that the "gun enthusiasts" have lost the plot.

Belinda Padilla does not pick up unknown calls anymore, not since someone posted her cellphone number on an online forum for gun enthusiasts. A few fuming-mad voice mail messages and heavy breathers were all it took.

Then someone snapped pictures of the address where she has a P.O. box and put those online, too. In a crude, cartoonish scrawl, this person drew an arrow to the blurred image of a woman passing through the photo frame. “Belinda?” the person wrote. “Is that you?”

Her offense? Trying to market and sell a new .22-caliber handgun that uses a radio frequency-enabled stopwatch to identify the authorized user so no one else can fire it.

There was no issue here about government mandates or the like, mind you. Her crime was the supposition that some gun owners might want a safer gun, which is all it took for a wave of outraged "enthusiasts" to come surging toward her house like a tsunami of stupid…

Having guns that can not easily be converted for use by criminals is too big a threat to gun manufacturers’ profits, so they whipped Republican Ammosexuals, far too stupid to realize they are being used, into a frenzy of hate.

From NY Times: Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey said on Saturday that if he were elected president he would combat illegal immigration by creating a system to track foreign visitors the way FedEx tracks packages.

Mr. Christie, who is far back in the pack of candidates for the Republican presidential nomination, said at a campaign event in New Hampshire that he would ask the chief executive of FedEx, Frederick W. Smith, to devise the tracking system.

I have a better idea. Lets track PIGnocchio the way Goodyear tracks blimps! Hot smile

From Alternet: George Zimmerman, the killer of Trayvon Martin who was last seen hawking paintings of the Confederate battle flag that praised the Second Amendment, took to Twitter in the wake of yesterday’s shootings of Alison Parker and Adam Ward to condemn the “Black [piece of shit]” who murdered them and the “Ignorant Baboon” in the White House who mentioned gun control in his comments about their murders.

Presumably because he knows a thing or two about killing people in cold blood…

If Strike Three wins the nomination, here’s a potential running mate just slightly right of him to appeal to the Republican base.

Cartoon:

0830Cartoon

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Aug 292015
 

As I have said many times before, Bill Maher is a very funny guy, whose irreverent style is almost always right on target.  For that reason, I try to share his material with you, whenever I have the opportunity, and I shall continue to do so.

Maher

Real Time’s Bill Maher explained to his audience what the new female sex pill and religion have in common during his New Rules segment this Friday night…

Inserted from <Crooks and Liars>

 

I do have to add that, while I agree that everyone should be free to be themselves sexually, that does not extend to deceiving one’s partner in a committed relationship.  What else can I say? Well, I won’t be taking Pillify to Viagra Falls! Smile with tongue out

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Aug 292015
 

I’m starting a little late, because a thunderstorm interfered with my Wi-Fi. On the plus side, steam rose from the asphalt street.  What a relief!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me  2:58 (average 4:53).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From YouTube (Hat-Tip Lynn Squance): Harperman is a protest song against the Conservative government of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. We are organizing a cross-Canada singalong of Harperman on September 17, just a month before the expected date of the Canadian federal election. Please contribute, if you can, to helping organize the singalong. Our first crowdfunding program on Indiegogo has finished and a new campaign has been launched at http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/cro…

 

Thanks Squatch!! This could apply to any US Republican too!!

From Daily Kos: In recent weeks, there has been a lot of political debate among the Republican presidential candidates about immigrants and aspiring citizens in our country.

And frankly, it has become ugly and dangerous.

Please take a minute to hear my thoughts below.

In Solidarity,

Rich.

 

I couldn’t have said it better.

From NY Times: …As Mr. Obama comes north for what the White House has described as an examination of the effects of climate change, Alaska is battling over oil — its chief source of revenue — and the thorny implications of drilling. Oil prices have fallen to multiyear lows, and production has declined from aging oil fields — with consequences rippling through a state that pays for just about everything with taxes from oil.

Mr. Walker, in an interview in his Anchorage office, said he planned to press Mr. Obama to loosen restrictions on exploration and to pledge support for a natural gas pipeline. More broadly, Mr. Walker said, he hoped to help the president understand Alaska’s dependence, because of climate and geography, on what can be extracted from the land or sea.

“From oil and gas development to fish caught in the ocean, we literally live off the resources,” Mr. Walker said.

But fossil fuels are also blamed for human-caused climate change, and that reality has set up a competing claim for the president’s attention. More drilling for energy, climate advocates say, is not the answer for Alaska or the planet. With a three-day trip for Mr. Obama planned out by the White House — including the first visit by a sitting president to some of Alaska’s most remote Arctic communities — the uncertainties and stakes are high, people on all sides of the energy fight say.

I hope that environmentalists hound President Obama wherever he goes. Allowing Shell to drill in the Arctic was one of his worst decisions while in office.

Cartoon:

0829Cartoon

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Aug 282015
 

This anonymous essay comes from a friend of a friend with whom I do volunteer work.  I do not know who she is.  However, I have heard many stories from people who believed in the criminal justice system in this country, until they or a member of their family learned first hand that their experience was the polar opposite of what they had believed.  This is one mother’s reaction to such an experience.

July 26, 2015

0828thematrix5What I want people to know is what I’ve learned over the past two years – how my life is upside down both philosophically and emotionally. Philosophically, because what I learned, believed about our justice system is just thrown under the bus. I am angry. Angry at people who are charged with our wonderful, ideal system and have perverted it and made us all accomplices in torture and harm. We were standing shoulder to shoulder with prison guards who abuse prisoners; DAs and police who lie, who give up honesty and integrity to convict.

We became part of the problem. Only we didn’t even realize there was a problem. They lie. They suck us in to be their accomplices. We asked no questions. We believed them. No. We believed the idea of a system. We believed they were the embodiment of truth. They kept us safe from people who would harm us, who were really terrible people.

But what do they do? “Lose” evidence, lie to protect themselves, serve as judge and jury to convict whom they have decided is guilty. Screw looking at evidence. How did they get to the place where they are in such a hallowed system of our country, protecting our country’s ideals, being the keeper for those ideals and now corrupting those ideals.

Am I naïve? Not now. Was I? Yes. But I’m in the company of the majority of our country. I listen over and over and OVER again to “I had no idea how this system works! I was shocked to learn how it really works.” Problem is – no one does know until it happens. No one believes until it does happen.

I’m angry that I was blindsided. Is it my fault? Should I have known better? WHY SHOULD I!?!! Where’s the disconnect here? That our system as taught to high-schoolers is just too much of a fairy tale? I should know better than to believe such a fairy tale could actually work? Are the people in the justice system just laughing at me for being so naive?

Or is the disconnect in how people have subverted the ideal? The people who have gotten used to having it their way? People who have decide they are smarter than tedious “truth and justice” and will improve a hopelessly naïve system?

Are we in The Matrix*? They have created this fake world that they’ve sold us on that every thing is right in our world, that they have the knowledge and expertise to keep it the ideal it is.

But behind their words and assurances that create the perfect illusion is a world of crumbling, moldy, derelict laws. A blighted world wildly out of control with more and more laws, penalties, and incarcerations for longer and longer times. A world destroyed with smoking embers, blown out, burned down buildings, haunted people. Out of sight behind the illusion they create with their paternalistic, mesmerizing lies! Do we choose to believe their lies because it’s just easier? No! I think we believe because we truly believe that they are the pillars of our justice system. We hear their excuses—which they call “reasons”—and that reinforces what we already instinctively believe.

But now pieces of their façade may be cracking. Can they hold it together and continue to make us believe their fake world? We know what is really behind their world of “safety, justice and truth”. We’ve seen and heard the destroyed lives, the money taken from society and spent to warehouse people and then return wasted people with wasted lives and difficult options. The LIES – The harm – The self-supporting arguments.

What will it take to bring down the phony façade of a tough on crime, retribution, vengeance model of justice and return us to where most people already think we are: convicting wrong-doers but with consideration of mitigating or extenuating circumstances, incarcerating only people who are a threat and then rehabilitating them so they can live as successful citizens. Giving people a chance to pay for their crime and then re-joining society. Being humans helping humans.

My passion. I want people to know what I’ve learned. I want to shock them awake to what our criminal justice system has become. No, ladies and gentlemen, it is not what you believe it is.

Unfortunately, most of you will never really find that out. No, it’s not fortunate that you will never have a loved one, or yourself, caught up in this horrible system. It’s not fortunate that you’ll never have an accusation made at you of something you never did. It’s not fortunate that you get to keep living oblivious to how our criminal justice system has lost its way in mandatory sentencing. Because unless you are unfortunate enough to have personal contact with this devastating system, you won’t try to do something about it.

(From Wikipedia: The Matrix movie depicts a dystopian [an imaginary community or society that is undesirable or frightening] future in which reality as perceived by most humans is actually a simulated reality called "the Matrix", created by sentient machines to subdue the human population,)

Personally, I find what she has to say both believable and compelling.

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Aug 282015
 

0828KingDream

Martin Luther King, Jr. influenced my political thinking more than any other individual.  I was fortunate to have worked under him on Vietnam Summer and to have been present on the Washington Mall fifty-two years ago today on August 28, 1963. It’s hard to believe that we are once again fighting the battle to preserve the voting rights won as a result of his dream, and to restore them, where racist Republicans are outlawing the right to vote. After his speech, I need say nothing more.

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