Players on the Playa…

what happent to the moosic?


Down on our luck…

I have some friends who need work, stone broke, down on their luck.  I suppose I should be grateful I’m not in their shoes.

I have neighbors in Stoughton whose homes were destroyed by the tornado.  I have a roof over my head and I suppose I should be grateful.

Katrina…  what can I say?  Should I be grateful that my family didn’t dfrown and our home wasn’t washed away?  Perhaps, but I’m not sure empathy and concern translate into that dimension of gratitude.

A couple of weeks ago my friend, a young man maybe forty, felt chipper, felt grand.  Last Tuesday he got sick, felt flu-ful.  Monday he called and asked me to take a meeting for him.  He was still sick, worse in fact, thought it might be pneumonia.   Monday night he went to the emergency room, he felt so bad.  They whisked him off to cardiac intensive care.  It might be a virus, but whatever it is, he’s had a ventricular pump implanted and when he is fully conscious he can begin waiting for a heart.  Mind your manners Harry, this is for real.  I saw him today in the recovery room.  I think he thought I was Ed.  He survived this first high risk surgery and they’ve sent off some tissue to the pathology lab to find out really what ails him.  How can I begin to be grateful I’m not in his shoes?  I don’t have a bunch of school age kids, a working wife, a barn full of animals that need feeding and stalls that need cleaning and eggs that need gathering and turkeys that need shooing off the hood of the car so they don’t make it a huge poopy mess.

Today we were robbed, right about the time I was over at the hospital.  The thief was in his funky Geo Metro trying to leave the premises but he had to wait for Jake who was preceding him out of the driveway on the tractor.  Jake waved, the thief waved back.  The silly twit was carrying several pounds of change from the collection on my dresser.  I think the price of the gas to move that much metal would offset the return.  If you’re paid by the hour to count pennies, how many pennies would you have to count to make it worth your wages?

I have no clue how to place myself in a counterpositional attitude of gratitude as far as the victims of senseless tragedy and straitened circumstances are concerned.   I know for sure that I am grateful I am not the thief in the funky Geo Metro.

What’s going on…

After dark on the Playa — erotic music with Sunburned Sara


Republicans War on Science

"Some of America’s leading scientists
have accused Republican politicians of intimidating climate-change experts by
placing them under unprecedented scrutiny," Paul Brown reports today in the Guardian.

I for one do not believe it.  Right wing christian demagogues at war with scientists?  Why?  Who benefits?

Oh.  Wait.  Joe Barton, chairman of the House of Representatives committee on energy and commerce, is leading the charge.  "Mr. Barton, a Texan closely associated with the fossil-fuel lobby, has spent
his 11 years as chairman opposing every piece of legislation designed to combat
climate change," Brown says.

So maybe there is a smattering of substance here, but — heck, a little intimidation is just politics, right?

Katrina – the fault lies with the Republicans

This is the story of the Hurricane,
A man the authorities came to blame…

It’s not the Bush family’s fault.  Not really.  It was Ron Reagan (Bozone Ron as we called him) and that harlot Maggie Thatcher that conspired to burn every spare molecule of oxygen out of the atmosphere and turn the earth to rust.  On the way to the goal we have to pass through a little period of global warming, high seas and foul weather, but that’s not the Bush family’s fault.  Well, in a way it is.  They’re the freakozoid alien monsters that signed the pact with Satan and burned off Kuwait, pumping more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than at any time since the great terminal extinction at the end of the cretaceous period.  Daddy and Barbara do have a basement shrine to Chthulu and it was daddy who dreamed up the prank of dropping the nuke down the pipe at Pinatubo, cooling things off a bit by pumping millions of tons of sulfur dioxide into the upper atmosphere and depriving the Philipine government of the use of Clark AFB, the US lease to which coincidentally expired that month.  But if the sufur dioxide could be considered a trade-off for the megatons of CO2 released in Kuwait, there is really nothing that can compensate for the tons of gamma radiation sickness and heavy metal poisoning that the Bush family has fostered in SouthWest Asia through their use of depleted uranium munitions.  Pundits have noted the matched father/son Mercedes SLRs with the cute bumper stickers.  One says, "I’m a friend of Bill W." and the other says "I’m a friend of Adnan Khashoggi."  It’s not clear whose is whose.

But all that is by way of a backgrounder, a little factual detail to support my theory that the Republicans really are not as compassionate as they would have us believe, and that indeed if there’s a buck to be made then they will likely say fuck the environment.

There is on the web, the wonderful wide web, a site called ""  Interestingly, I can’t find a site called "," but I digress.  At, there is a little database of blogs neatly sorted by whether the writers have tendencies to favor left-wing or right-wing positions.  When I post on a topic of common interest, occasionally excerpts the post, sends me a track-back and parks me in the column on the left.  Go figure.  I think of myself as more of a fair and balanced guy.  I have met Glenn Reynolds and remained civil.  Today I pointed to Andy Carvin’s mobcast on Katrina, an effort itself so nonpartisan that there would be no way I could warp it into a dirty, commie, pinko, socialist, cuban-loving, venezuela-supporting, swedish-suicidal thing at all.  But the post ended up in the left column, a place I always thought was reserved for my impassioned defense of Che Guevara and Huey Newton.  So I was scrolling down the page and I noticed something.  The left column is humongously longer than the right column.  The leading and kerning are tight on the left and loose on the right, the fonts smaller on the left and larger on the right, the excerpts shorter on the left and longer on the right — all in some schoolboy attempt to even out the space allocated to both.  But what is obvious is that the right-wing, the Republicans, just don’t care very much about the hurricane, it’s human costs, the environmental issues or much of anything that can’t be debated.  They seem to be saying, "There’s no argument about whether or not the hurricane was a bad thing, so why write about it?"  From the right, there are currently 41 posts from about 30 blogs relating to the devastation.  From the left, there are 60 posts from 60 blogs.  From this I conclude that, while not entirely oblivious to suffering or devoid of care, the right wing is simply less emotional and sympathetic than the left.

Incidentally, Barbara Bush was really pissed that her husband allowed all those cooling sulfur dioxide gases to escape from the volcano and screw up the master plan to return the earth to a uniform mesozoic tropical beach front climate and geography.  Hence the intense marketing of SUV’s in the later nineties and early naughts.

Katrina Aftermath

Andy Carvin has set up an open blog and mobcast for people to share information and thougts on Hurricane Katrina.  Photos, posts, tagged info, and podcasts are being collected at Katrina Aftermath,

Here are Andy’s instructions…

Daniel Dennett redux

Here’s a young man who gets it

…what ‘school of thought’ is being advanced by the Intelligent Design
hypothesis?–one whose only defense seems to be that it is incapable of
scientific testing, and thus impregnable. To me, the concept of
intelligent Design is muddy, nebulous and bankrupt, a fence-straddling
pseudo-theory that provides a convenient alternative to those who want
to pull their toes out of the icy waters of the evolution-creationism
debate. Essentially, ID attempts to bridge creationism and evolution by
attempting to prove neither. To most rational people, this should make
the ‘debate’ seem altogether irrelevant.

Something else that’s been on my mind about this whole "Intelligent Design" thing…  it’s not as pro-god as it is anti-sex.  The great engine of evolution over the last billion years has been the emergence and avid practice of sexual reproduction.  And we KNOW what the christian right thinks about sex, joyous sex, wet and hard and hot and passionate, slippery sex.   Okay, in case you don’t know, they basically don’t like it.  And tying sex to survivbal characteristics they like even less.  One look at Rove, Cheney, or Rumsfeld should tell you why they don’t like the evolutionary aspect of sex.  Survival of the fittest?  Let’s just say that the pairing of Lynn and Chuck … what is Cheney’s first name?  He looks like a Chuck.  Anyway, the Cheney pairing is noty the stuff of evolutionary dreams.  Breeding?  Not really.  It’s more a thing of sow bellies and pork futures.

If this be ad hominem, make the most of it!