Paul Newman dead

September 28th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink


Such sad news. He was a lovely man, and a great humanitarian .

The stack by my bed

September 27th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

This week’s care package from Chapters Indigo includes the following:

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The story is in the bookshelf

September 27th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink


Stumbled on this site by multi-media artist, Nina Katchadourian, today. I can’t wait to try it, the next time I have a month or two to spare.

McCain: Dumb as a Post?

September 27th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

Watched the Presidential Debate last night – cleaning the toilet would have been a better, and more enjoyable, use of my time. To someone brought up in the Irish bar-room brawl style of political discussion, these stylized debates are frustrating enough at the best of times. But watching Obama ineffectually batting away McCain’s misrepresentations and downright lies, while giving him the kind of respect a well-brought up kid like Obama can’t help giving an old coot like McCain was super-frustrating.

At first, I was pleasantly surprised by how McCain presented himself. He was reasonable and quiet, putting his points forward with a modulated emphasis. Then, when I actually listened to what he was saying, it made no sense. Not just political sense, or debating sense. No sense, period. He strung together phrases he had learnt by rote and hung them out there. And Obama listened, nodding and looking thoughtful, as though they really meant something.

It confirmed for me something I have always suspected – that McCain really is as dumb as a post. Granted, he got into Annapolis on a legacy, as the son and grandson of admirals, and that he came fifth last out of his class of more than 800. And, according to the Vietnam Veterans Against John McCain, he also lost five aircraft before the Viet Cong captured him. But it would be logical to think that he must have picked up some smarts along the way, during his seven-odd decades. Sadly, it appears not, and the great American public seems quite prepared to give one more third generation screw up a stint in the White House.

After a time, increasingly frustrated because Obama failed to point out that McCain, and his pal Phil Gramm, were largely to blame for the current financial mess, I began not listening to most of what they were saying, instead watching their body language. Obama looked interested and attentive. He kept his eye on McCain while he was speaking, except when he was making notes, and he laughed at McCain’s feeble jokes. McCain, on the other hand, never looked at Obama, even when they came out at the beginning and shook hands. He either looked down at his notes or at the Moderator during Obama’s turn on the podium, and he constantly smirked, sniggered and shuffled paper. It was a pathetic and mean-spirited performance, and it showed him up for the vindictive little toad he is.

As if to underline that my evening might have been more profitably spent on latrine duty, the CBC newscast following the debate gave a very selective synopsis of the proceedings – a few clips of Obama scoring points (which were few and far between) and flattering sound bites of some of his remarks. On the other hand, McCain’s aides had bought advertising space on the Wall Street Journal’s website, declaring him the winner, even before the debate had started. So,why bother listening and watching, when the pundits and campaign staffers will tell you what to think about the debate?

But I’ll still be glued to the tube next Thursday, when Sarah Palin and Joe Biden take to the stage at Washington University.

The Breakfast Wars

September 18th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

With an election going on here in Canada too, the First Husband and I have had to declare the breakfast table a politics-free zone. I have promised I won’t read aloud from the newspaper quotes by Stevie Baby Harper, along with my snotty ripostes, and he has sworn he will no longer snigger aloud every time he sees a photo of Stephane ‘Can’t Hear de Music’ Dion. It’s not that TFH is an ardent Tory supporter, it’s just that he can’t resist baiting me when I make reasoned comments about shortfalls in the Tory manifesto. (His version is that he feels it incumbent on him to state possible alternatives when I begin a tirade about how much I loathe Harper and all he stands for.) As if.

Alaska Hearts Palin . . . not

September 15th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

While John McCain continues trying to justify his choice of Palin as Veep, it seems the folks back home have another viewpoint altogether.

Time for the Dems to wake up and start fighting back

September 10th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

Cintra Wilson nails it, in the following extract from an article in today’s Salon:

She writes: Republicans have — in a P.T. Barnum, sucker-born-every-minute kind of way — successfully framed themselves as the custodians of Christian ethics and conservative family values. This stance successfully masks their wholesale class war against the majority of their supporters, who continue to vote blatantly against their own economic interests in thrall to this deliberate emotional manipulation. It was the media critic Douglas Rushkoff who pointed out, several years ago, that Republican politicians were employing marketing techniques perfected by Clotaire Rapaille. Rapaille, broadly paraphrased, introduced a theory that approximately 80 percent of all decision making is done at the level of the limbic system — our lowest, most colorless, reptilian emotional level. Republican strategies are consistent with a belief that the voting process, for most people, is full of feelings — but devoid of reason.

Sounds like the fast track to the White House to me

September 7th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

More proof that there’s a whole different law for the well-connected. . .

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