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A Few Random Notes

It's not Global Warming Tuesday, but we can still mention GloWar, right? Check out Juliet Eilperin's story on the 36 cubic miles of ice being lost annually from the Antarctic peninsula. That's a big ice cube. "The continent holds 90 percent of the world's ice, and the disappearance of even its smaller West Antarctic ice sheet could raise worldwide sea levels by an estimated 20 feet." Miami Beach, it was nice knowin' ya. That said, Richard Alley cautioned that the new study is based on just three years worth of data. All this stuff is peer-reviewed, but we can't help but note that, with just three years of data, you could prove almost anything, including that Bode Miller is the greatest athlete in the world.

The White House declined once again yesterday to post a comment in the Boodle, but it did release a long statement defending the president in the matter of the Katrina video. The Baker/Hsu analysis features a strong quote from GOP senator Vitter: "It was not only predictable, it was actually predicted. That's what makes the failures in response -- at the local, state and federal level -- all the more outrageous."

Roseanne was on Larry King last night, talking about her multiple personality disorder, among other things. She's a piece of work. She's also a blonde now. We're talking gallons, nay, entire 55-gallon drums, of peroxide went into this transformation. Which brings up the Shafer blonde-newswomen slide-show of last week. [Someday this blog will learn how to do a slide show. Or at least post a picture.]

By Joel Achenbach  |  March 3, 2006; 8:39 AM ET
Categories:  Gibberish  
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Next: Lauri's Oscar Picks

Comments

"All this stuff is peer-reviewed, but we can (sic) help but note that, with just three years of data, you could prove almost anything..."

Au contraire, mon frer. The Demos had more than three years of data, and they couldn't convince the electorate that GWB was unfit for office. I guess that's where the "almost" comes in, huh?

Posted by: kurosawaguy | March 3, 2006 9:09 AM | Report abuse

People have been paying at least $1 million apiece for oceanfront lots in our county (south of Cape Canaveral, north of Tiger Wood's new house). Could someone up in Maine make a business of barging granite boulders to raise these lots about 30 feet? Our coast could look just like Kennebunkport.

Posted by: Dave | March 3, 2006 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Wow.

So they understood the magnitude and still did nothing?

Wow.

That's actually worse than *not understanding* the magnitude. That's worse than incompetence, that's 'let them eat cake.'

He basically let 3000 or so people die and gives us the equivalent of an 'oops'.

Posted by: amo | March 3, 2006 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Here we go again. Lets just rename the blog the Global Warming Watch. You former Floridians just can't quit obsessing over it. Just because the entire state is less than 10 inches above sea-level, you think it's some sort of emergency or crisis. It will take decades for the water to reach Calle Ocho.

Holland has lived below sea level for centuries and you don't see them crying. Start building those levees and dikes now and you'll have plenty of time. I doubt the Army Corps of Engineers has much on their plate right now.

When I moved up here from Florida, it was to get away from the year-round warmth. I don't miss Florida often or much. It has been a full decade since I've seen a roach big enough to saddle run across my floor when the lights snap on.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 3, 2006 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Three years of data (in response to k-guy's post about the electorate having three years of info about GWB--yet still voting him into office. I made sure, k-guy, that I read, while in southern Indiana, Ivins' and Dubose's "Shrub" before I voted--as well as followed the 2000 contest in the local paper.)

Of course, there's the general intelligence and political knowledge level of the U.S. electorate to consider:

This op-ed from today's San Antonio Express-News:

Editorial: Well, uh, let's see ... freedom to be ignorant?
Web Posted: 03/03/2006 12:00 AM CST
San Antonio Express-News

Pass the doughnuts and beer — a combination worthy of the only man whose lack of knowledge and sophistication may equal our own.

That would be Homer Simpson, the befuddled cartoon patriarch.

Before you condemn his obtuseness, however, you might want to look in the mirror.

Most Americans have an easier time naming the members of the Simpsons than listing the freedoms granted in the First Amendment, according to a recent survey by the McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum in Chicago.

Half of the 1,000 Americans randomly surveyed could name at least two of the Simpsons, while only 28 percent could identify more than one of the five freedoms, Reuters reported.

Some respondents listed the right to drive and to have pets.

"These survey results clearly demonstrate that many Americans don't have an understanding of the freedoms they regularly enjoy," Dave Anderson, executive director of the museum, said.

The Simpsons (Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie) are funny. The results of the survey are not.

Oh, those five freedoms? Speech, religion, press, assembly and petition for redress of grievances.

Posted by: Loomis | March 3, 2006 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Joel,

In the sixth sentence, I'm looking for a verb.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 3, 2006 9:38 AM | Report abuse

"..petition for redress of grievances.."

The part that keeps lobbyists fully employed. I think less than 1% got that one right. I'm pretty sure I would have missed it too.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 3, 2006 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Wow, I got 4 right without too much thinking. We have a bill of rights here in Canada, but you know what? Never read it. Nor have I or most other Canadians any idea what the heck our constitution says. We are in the process of making it un-Canadian to know.

Don't forget that after Florida floods, the whole center of the continnent becomes a big lake. think mountain property.

Posted by: dr | March 3, 2006 10:02 AM | Report abuse

I will take credit for the "..petition for redress of grievances.." comment since it seems to have killed the boodle.

Boodle reviver:
Oscar predictions?

Posted by: yellojkt | March 3, 2006 10:13 AM | Report abuse

I don't miss Florida either, with its 6 month long hurricane season, topical storms, pine trees that snap and crash through roofs, year round oppressive humidity, lack of discernible changes in seasons, nor its tropical plants reminiscent of K. Hepburn's creepy garden in Suddenly Last Summer. Give me good old Texas "northers", Falls blazing with color, mesquite trees, tumbleweeds, zinnias, bluebonnets and yucca!

Posted by: Nani | March 3, 2006 10:22 AM | Report abuse

oooo nani! i love that movie suddenly last summer! (but then again, i love all tennessee williams plays/movies) i thought liz did a fantastic job! (but i think i remember us talking about this before???)

wtop aired that simpsons/first amendment study results on wed i believe... i admit i googled the first amendment but i knew most of them (had a co-worker once who gave out pocket sized versions of the constitution - he was a nut about it!) and i'm not a big simpsons fan...

it's funny what kb said in the previous boodle about sharing symptoms of illnesses - soooo true! hey, maybe mudge is starting to get me into conspiracy theories here but maybe this is just a result of a dirty bomb??? hmmm... everyone getting sick with the same cold? see where i'm going with this??

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Oh now I am simply bursting with SONG!!

Texas, Our Texas! all hail the mighty State!
Texas, Our Texas! so wonderful so great!
Boldest and grandest, withstanding ev'ry test
O Empire wide and glorious, you stand supremely blest.


Texas, O Texas! your freeborn single star,
Sends out its radiance to nations near and far,
Emblem of Freedom! it set our hearts aglow,
With thoughts of San Jacinto and glorious Alamo.


Texas, dear Texas! from tyrant grip now free,
Shines forth in splendor, your star of destiny!
Mother of heroes, we come your children true,
Proclaiming our allegiance, our faith, our love for you.

God bless you Texas! And keep you brave and strong,
That you may grow in power and worth, throughout the ages long.
God bless you Texas! And keep you brave and strong,
That you may grow in power and worth, throughout the ages long.


Posted by: Nani | March 3, 2006 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Now, now, people. Maximum sea-level rise is only 5-6 meters. Manhattan will become Venice 2. Venice will become Atlantis. Boston will become, umm, Manhattan. New Orleans will be flooded and destroyed and forced to move, despite foolishly heroic efforts by the Army Corps of Engineers, so the news departments of the networks will be able to save major money by using re-runs. Synergy!

My house will be fine. However, I am a government grant-recipient, so I may have trouble unless the government starts to equip its bureaucrats with boats, scuba gear, and octopus ink for signing contracts.

The center of the continent will not become a lake! It would be more like an inland sea, if anything, since it would communicate directly with the ocean and be the outflow channel for rivers desalinating the soil. However, it hasn't been under water for 10's of millions of years -- it's been bulking up, you know.

Posted by: ScienceTim | March 3, 2006 10:33 AM | Report abuse

LOL @ Nani & yellowjkt!

I wouldn't live anywhere BUT Florida! Okay, maybe the Southwest -- but not CA!

Gimme heat and lots of it; I love the sunshine! More is better! Springs within spitting distance, the ocean view! Man, Florida rules!

Mosquitoes & alligators as housepets! What's not to love? And our beloved cockroaches! There's an Adopt-A-Roach program in my community and it's really da (bug) bomb!

I am a little concerned about the lack of rain expected this Spring. My banana trees and my lime tree are gonna struggle. And they've imposed watering restrictions! Only two days a week. (I think it's a conspiracy to ship our lovely Floridan Aquifer water to all those South Floridians!)

Can't wait to wear shorts and flip-flops! What's that? Oh the Weather Channel says we can wear them today! And I haven't had my heat on in over a week!

(big grin)

Posted by: amo | March 3, 2006 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Nani said: "I don't miss Florida either, with its ... topical storms ..."

That's the general class of weather events that includes Rovestorms.

Posted by: Tim | March 3, 2006 10:37 AM | Report abuse

'cmon, POTUS didn't do *nothing* prior to Rita reaching the Gulf Coast.

The leader of the world's most powerful military showed his leadership by signing two declarations of disaster and showed concern by making phone calls urging people to seek safety *just days* before flying over the disaster area in Air Farce, er, Force One.

Those that take umbrage with POTUS for not making those phone calls with offers to mobilize the military to help prepare for "the big one"...

bc

Posted by: bc | March 3, 2006 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Show a little mercy Nani, it's Friday.

Being a military brat, I learned many a state song in my school years. Best was "Oklahoma!" official state song written by Rodgers and Hammerstein. As fifth graders we used to hold that first Oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooklahoma for all it was worth. Worst was "I like to live in Missouri" which we would usually subvert to "I like to live in misery." My memories of singing "Texas, Our Texas" are-
Texas, Our Texas! all hail this crappy State!
Texas, Our Texas! our schools are second rate!

Posted by: kurosawaguy | March 3, 2006 10:42 AM | Report abuse

It kind of wandered into yesterday's blog, so I wanted to again share this link ...

http://journalism.nyu.edu/pubzone/blueplate/issue1/best_nwsps/

The upshot is that some folks looked at newspapers and blogs and — in a surprise to me — said that The Washington Post is number two, behind the Houston Chronicle. In what is not a surprise, it pointed to this blog right here as a shining star of The Post's bloggery.

yello — Saddlin' up a roach from time to time is half the appeal of living down here in the nether regions.

Posted by: Bayou Self | March 3, 2006 10:42 AM | Report abuse

amo--shhhh! Let them keep thinking they have it good where they are! Our line is, "It's a nice place to visit! Then go back home!"

[I love Florida too--I actually prefer the culture of Boston, the people in Colorado, the political climate of Oregon, the career opportunities in DC--but the weather is the trump card and my overall quality of life is immeasurably better here in SoFla.]

Posted by: kbertocci | March 3, 2006 10:44 AM | Report abuse

ScienceTim, I just spent the last half hour Googling and searching the Internet (that bastion of all there is to know, he said, sarcastically) looking in vain for a topo map of the US (and also the world) if the sea level rose, say 10 feet, or 20 feet, or whatever. Couldn't find a durn thing. Have you or any other boodlers got a link? I'm sure one must be "out there" (the truth is always out there, as X-Files reminds us).

mo, despite a few of my posts, I'm not really into conspiracy theories. If I mention one, I've usually got my tongue in cheek. However, I listened to an NPR interview (might have been a replay) with a noted conspiracy-theory researcher who "ilfiltrated" the Bilderberg Group. He also talked about the Illuminati and many other major CTs. I find the topic fascinating, but am generally disdainful of "serious" theory-holders.

However, in your case, I'm willing to make an exception: your cold was deliberately cultivated by Loomis and me, with some help from bc and others. We've been playing with the notion of using the Internet to spread "real" germs, not just the usual metaphorical "viruses" that hackers pass around. Believe me, stuffing those little viri into my computer hard drive was a challenge, but I believe we may have made a breakthrough in transmission. For my next experiment, I'm going to try to transfer antibiotics and chicken soup over the DSL. If I can pull that off, I'm thinking Nobel Prize for sure.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 10:49 AM | Report abuse

As the Grateful Dead used to sing, or at least Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead, "Well it's T for Texas, yes and it's T for Timbuktu."

mo - That right to petition the government and redress grievances or whatever it is, that's the one that keeps tripping me up.

bc, et al - I'm taking a moment to ponder again the prez and Katrina. I'm a little bit surprised at the reaction that — gasp — Bush knew that New Orleans was in for, quite possibly, (and I write with technical precision here because I know that you demand it) whole bunch of hurt.

Of course he knew it! And we didn't need some stinkin' videotape to prove it. We all knew it. It was on the news. There were weather service bulletins. That's why so many people got the hell out of there.

That's why I'm still thinking, as much as I don't like the guy as a president, that Bush is misunderstood about his nobody-saw-it-coming comment.

Posted by: Bayou Self | March 3, 2006 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Years ago, I recall that the ACLU did a man-on-the-street survey in which they asked people if they supported various free-wheeling libertine freedoms of the press, people being free to pursue oddball religious activities, being free to publish all kinds of offensive things. They didn't ask if they supported the content, just the freedoms that permit people to publish it. It turned out that the American people are universally opposed to 1st Amendment freedoms if you quote them out of the context of the phrases "Bill of Rights" or "First Amendment."

I'm not particularly shocked or appalled by the results of the survey comparing knowledge of popular culture vs. knowledge of the Constitution. First of all, it's called "popular culture" for good reason. Second, most people are rigorously exposed to the content of the Constitution only in High School, whereas popular culture is like the air we breathe. Thirdly, people are hard-wired to be very good at recognizing people. It's a bogus comparison to say you can't remember 5 freedoms of the 1st Amendment (abstract concepts), but you can remember the 5 Simpsons (visual memory of things you've seen). The fact that there's 5 of something in each category is a mere coincidence. The Simpsons are one tidy category with sub-categories. The First Amendment lists 5 independent freedoms that most people encounter only when someone points out that they are infringing on someone else's 1st Amendment freedoms.

Try this test: write out the names of every person whose name and face you can recall. Now write out every abstract concept you know or can think of. Picking 5 of the former that a class of people are likely to know is a heck of a lot easier than picking 5 of the latter. This survey cherry-picks the ideas that are important to the surveyors on a daily basis, and takes it for granted that they should be equally commonly of interest to everyone else.

It's just really ... bad ... pseudo-science. The kind of sloppy thinking that makes us quantitative scientists detest sociology and makes us sigh unhappily when we think of the oxymoronic phrase "political science."

Posted by: Tim | March 3, 2006 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Missing footage from the end of Bush's Katrina conference call revealed!

Max Mayfield: "That's a hell of an act! What do you call it?"

W: "The Aristocrats!"

Posted by: jw | March 3, 2006 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Curmudgeon - Not only did we learn from The X-Files that "the truth is out there," we also learned that "Someone is always watching." At the time, we just didn't happen to realize that "someone" was with the NSA.

Posted by: Bayou Self | March 3, 2006 10:56 AM | Report abuse

qq

Posted by: qq | March 3, 2006 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Ah, gwahhhhn! Let's just post the relevant paragraph of praise in that article about the best blogs, linked above at 10:24 by Bayou Self:

"The Post was found to have writers who spoke with real authority or displayed extraordinary talent— led by Joel Achenbach’s Achenblog, which drew the most praise of any newspaper blog the Specials saw. “Achenbach pulls off the lofty task of making his blog more than just an online column,” writes Alfuso. “He covers other blogs, receives tons of comments, and doesn’t confine himself to one particular topic.” Krase is blunter. She likes his “his snarky and sarcastic writing tone.”

------------

"the most praise of any newspaper blog the Specials saw." Wowser. That's just what we needed here in the boodle: performance anxiety.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 11:02 AM | Report abuse

I was amused (because it wasn't my career on the line, of course) to read in my alma mater's alumni newsletter many years ago, that the University Senate had voted to dissolve the Department of Sociology. The general sense was that the department as a unit did not show the intellectual coherency nor the scholalrly achievement that one expects from a department within a major research university.

I could have told them that from overhearing a conversation with one of the university's best-and-brightest in that department in 1982. He was some scion of a midwestern upper middle-class family, who regularly evidenced the financial benefits of that class, telling a friend about his upcoming teaching of his advisor's advanced sociology class, spending the week dealing with his undergraduate thesis research on inner-city homeless heroin addicts. Write what you know, you know.

Posted by: ScienceTim | March 3, 2006 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Curmudgeon: the truth, and the data, are out there. That doesn't make them easy to find, or to use. The Shuttle Radar Mapping Mission is the source of the data that you really want, mapping the Earth's surface at something like two-meter resolution. SRM was motivated by the realization that our maps of Venus from the Magellan mission were better than our maps of the Earth. Since SRM was limited to the Shuttle's latitude range, it's really only a map of the temperate-latitude Earth.

There are interesting gaps in SRM coverage, I expect. For example, there are certain regions of Nevada that it is illegal to investigate by radar. DoD was ready to shoot down the Japanese-US TRMM satellite, on which my wife worked, when they realized it had a radar emitter going as it passed over Nevada. The mission was saved by quick diplomacy and an agreement to divert the satellite's beam as it flew over the continental US. Plus, the DoD has not yet shown itself to be very good at bringing down missiles and satellites and things. They would have killed it bureaucratically.

To find somehting that you can actually use, you ned to narrow your focus. Go to the US Geological Survey web site. I'm not going to check in detail right now, but I recall that they have search functions and access to topographic maps of all sorts of stuff.

Posted by: ScienceTim | March 3, 2006 11:12 AM | Report abuse

aw mudge - performance anxiety? you? i don't believe that for a nano-second! (i also don't think you are really a conspiracy theorist - i have a family member who is - your theories are amusing, her's? just plain off the wall!!)

hey - i think i've found 1 good thing about this darn cold - i'm starting to get 6-pack abs from coughing so much! there's gotta be a market in that!!

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, you might like this link.

http://www.paleoportal.org/time_space/time_space.php

Not only water, but plate tectonically.

Posted by: dr | March 3, 2006 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Curmudgeon, thou shalt henceforth be known as Sir Siphon, Earl of Electrolux, for such sucking up to the High Lord Jo-el we have not seen in all the realm of Boodle ere now. We shall ask that the royal scribe, Boodelaire, be commissioned to prepare a commemerative of this day which shall upon completion be presented to you in the nether regions.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | March 3, 2006 11:15 AM | Report abuse

ok - VERY interesting - since i am scum and didn't know my state's song (virginia - and i grew up here! i know, i know i already said i'm scum) i of course googled it and was SHOCKED (i don't even remember hearing the song to begin with but it's been the state song since 1940)

Carry Me back to Old Virginny
Written by James Bland

Carry me back to old Virginny,
There's where the cotton and the corn and tatoes grow,
There's where the birds warble sweet in the springtime,
There's where the old darke'ys heart am long'd to go,
There's where I labored so hard for old massa,
Day after day in the field of yellow corn,
No place on earth do I love more sincerely
Than old Virginny, the state where I was born.

CHORUS

Carry me back to old Virginny,
There's where the cotton and the corn and tatoes grow,
There's where the birds warble sweet in the springtime,
There's where this old darkey's heart am long'd to go.

Carry me back to old Virginny,
There let me live 'till I wither and decay,
Long by the old Dismal Swamp have I wandered,
There's where this old darke'ys life will pass away.
Massa and missis have long gone before me,
Soon we will meet on that bright and golden shore,
There we'll be happy and free from all sorrow,
There's where we'll meet and we'll never part no more.


On Jan 28, 1997 the Virginia Senate voted 24 -15 to designate Carry Me Back as state song "emeritus" and directed a study committee to come up with a new state song.
The ACIR intends to make a final selection in the contest and a recommendation to the General Assembly and the Governor for the 2001 General Assembly session.
Carry Me back to Old Virginny was written by an African American minstrel, James Bland, in the last century and has been Virginia's state song since 1940.

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 11:17 AM | Report abuse

seriously, mo, try the Mucinex. The only thing that worked. All the coughing is from phlegm in your trachea. And warm/hot liquids to carry it away. (I actually got nauseous from the phlegm it was so bad.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 11:18 AM | Report abuse

scc: that's probably nauseated, not nauseous, isn't it? OK, sick to my stomach. So there.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 11:19 AM | Report abuse

I vaguely recall that an inch rise in the depth of the ocean covers about 100 feet of shoreline...look for stuff authored by Orrin Pilkey...hydrogeologist at Duke, i think...proponent of leaving the outerbanks of N.C. as they are; not hardening shorelines, building in the tidal zone/dune areas, etc...

Posted by: jack | March 3, 2006 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Hmm...well you got me thinking Mo, and I don't know what Massachusetts' state (ahem, "Commonwealth") song is! And turns out it's a spelling lesson as well:

All hail to Massachusetts, the land of the free and the brave!
For Bunker Hill and Charlestown, and flag we love to wave;
For Lexington and Concord, and the shot heard 'round the world;
All hail to Massachusetts, we'll keep her flag unfurled.
She stands upright for freedom's light that shines from sea to sea;
All hail to Massachusetts! Our country 'tis of thee!

All hail to grand old Bay State, the home of the bean and the cod,
Where pilgrims found a landing and gave their thanks to God.
A land of opportunity in the good old U.S.A.
Where men live long and prosper, and people come to stay.
Don't sell her short but learn to court her industry and stride;
All hail to grand old Bay State! The land of pilgrim's pride!

All hail to Massachusetts, renowned in the Hall of Fame!
How proudly wave her banners emblazoned with her name!
In unity and brotherhood, sons and daughters go hand in hand;
All hail to Massachusetts, there is no finer land!
It's M-A-S-S-A-C-H-U-S-E-T-T-S.
All hail to Massachusetts! All hail! All hail! All hail!

Posted by: jw | March 3, 2006 11:22 AM | Report abuse

At the conference we are learning many scary internet threats. Not the least is www.rinkworks.com/dialect Please see the following translation:

Your Text, Dialectized (redneck)
"Th' President's participashun in th' Augest 28 videoconference was open t'th' press, an' th' full transcripp of this hyar videoconference was released t'Congress an' th' public in th' fall of 2005. President Bush participated in briefin's, phone calls an' cornvahsashuns throughout this hyar process, an' his Administrashun was focused on makin' sho'nuff thet th' Federal assets were in place t'he'p th' varmints of Noo Orleans. Th' President has made clear - as recently as this hyar Tuesday - thet he was not satisfied wif th' Federal response. Thet is whuffo' he o'dered a comprehensive 'lessons larned' repo't an' plans t'wawk aggressively t'implement improvements t'our disaster response plans by th' start of hurricane season, as enny fool kin plainly see." --Trent Duffy, White House Deputy Press Secretary, 3/2/06

Your tax dollars at work.

Posted by: RD Padouk | March 3, 2006 11:23 AM | Report abuse

mudge - i actually ended up in the hospital on wed and they gave me meds and an inhaler - it's better but i'm still coughing... don't think i should mix mucinex with the meds they gave me - pseudovent and benzonatate... i'm gonna google 'em cuz i have no idea what they are!

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 11:24 AM | Report abuse

kguy - In fairness to 'Mudge, kb posted that suck-up-to-JA paragraph yesterday. (Me? I just posted the link with a snarky comment about comparative font sizes. Shoot, I didn't even get to the part where everything's bigger in Texas.)

From having checked that blond-anchors link that Joel gave us, I must say that The Periodic Table of Blondness would be a good 'Boodle handle, if anybody's looking.

Posted by: Bayou Self | March 3, 2006 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Demmit, demmit, demmit!!!!

I go to ONE class, and I finish JUST early enough to see Kurtz sing the Boodle's praises, THEN BS and 'Mudge STILL beat me to the punch!

Learning is dangerous, I tellya...

Posted by: Scottynuke | March 3, 2006 11:29 AM | Report abuse

jw - virginia is (ahem) a commonwealth as well - the only other one if'n i 'member correctly... tho i think i much rather your state song... not quite so... um... well... (ahem)...

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 11:29 AM | Report abuse

I wasn't sucking up to Joel, K-guy. I was sucking up to me. It's all about me. That's why I've now contracted performance anxiety. In fact, I think I even feel a song coming on about it, and it goes a little something like this:


No, dammit. I got nuthin. I swear, this has never happened to me before. How embarrassing. I mean, it happens to every guy sooner or later, right? Maybe in an hour. It's me, not you. I swear, it isn't you, you were great, it was just me. I musta had too much to drink or something.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 11:29 AM | Report abuse

SciTim writes: "DoD was ready to shoot down the Japanese-US TRMM satellite, on which my wife worked,"

Tha fact that your wife is involved saved the Boodle from an off-joke I was prepared to make. That sentence fragment has some low-hanging humor fruit, as it were.

Taking things out of context is crude but effective.

bc

Posted by: bc | March 3, 2006 11:33 AM | Report abuse

mo, I'm not sure why they don't just rewrite the words according to modern sensibilities (I'm actually being serious here):

Carry me back to old Virginny,
There's where the cotton and the corn and tatoes grow,
There's where the birds warble sweet in the springtime,
There's where this old fellow's heart does long to go,
There's where I labored so hard on the farm,
(I lost one syllable in that last line, have to work on that)
Day after day in the field of yellow corn,
No place on earth do I love more sincerely
Than old Virginny, the state where I was born.

CHORUS

Carry me back to old Virginny,
There's where the cotton and the corn and tatoes grow,
There's where the birds warble sweet in the springtime,
There's where this old fellow's heart does long to go.

Carry me back to old Virginny,
There let me live 'till I wither and decay,
Long by the old Dismal Swamp have I wandered,
There's where this old fellow's life will pass away.

Mother and Father have long gone before me,
Soon we will meet on that bright and golden shore,
There we'll be happy and free from all sorrow,
There's where we'll meet and we'll never part no more.

They've discovered that commissioning a new state song is hard. It really has to be entrenched in the public consciousness before it makes sense to be a state song. "Country Roads" would work for West (By God!) Virginia, but there's not much in the modern canon for Virginia.

I can also envision "Carry me off to New Virginny" with references to Federal contracting, high tech industry, and agricultural subsidies for tobacco growers. However, I'll leave that level of work to Curmudgeon

Posted by: Tim | March 3, 2006 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Well, duh. I was saying, having grown up in Oklahoma, I know that song backwards and forwards, and I know my mother's state song, Maryland, My Maryland (it's a Christmas carol...) how could someone not know his state song. And then I realized, I've lived in Florida for 25 years, and I don't know the Florida state song. So I looked it up, and, well, prepare to be nauseated:

The Swanee River
(Old Folks at Home)
Written by Stephen C. Foster


Way down upon de Swanee Ribber,
Far, far away,
Dere's wha my heart is turning ebber,
Dere's wha de old folks stay.
All up and down de whole creation
Sadly I roam,
Still longing for de old plantation,
And for de old folks at home.

Chorus

All de world am sad and dreary,
Eb-rywhere I roam;
Oh, darkeys, how my heart grows weary,
Far from de old folks at home!

2nd verse

All round de little farm I wandered
When I was young,
Den many happy days I squandered,
Many de songs I sung.
When I was playing wid my brudder
Happy was I;
Oh, take me to my kind old mudder!
Dere let me live and die.

3rd Verse

One little hut among de bushes,
One dat I love
Still sadly to my memory rushes,
No matter where I rove.
When will I see de bees a-humming
All round de comb?
When will I hear de banjo strumming,
Down in my good old home?

============

I guess Virginia was their role model. I'm afraid to check what Mississippi and Alabama have for songs...

Posted by: kbertocci | March 3, 2006 11:34 AM | Report abuse

There are four states that are official commonwealths- Virginia, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and Massachusetts.

Sorry, Mudge, as I dog owner I should have been the first to recognize self-sucking. You are undubbed Sir Siphon and returned to commoner status, Cur.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | March 3, 2006 11:38 AM | Report abuse

I looked it up: Mississippi and Alabama aren't that offensive. Georgia on My Mind is a great song, of course, but do you notice that it is actually a love song about a WOMAN named Georgia, and has nothing particular to do with the state?

Posted by: kbertocci | March 3, 2006 11:39 AM | Report abuse

tim!! that was great! you should write the va commission and tell them! (seriously!) i don't think they've commissioned a new song yet - last update i could find was '00 where they voted to extend the vote to an unknown date... as for entrenched in the minds - hey, like i said, i GREW up in va - went to public school in va - knew the bird, the flag, the rock - been to richmond and NEVER heard the song before... now i know why! even in the 80's i don't see a song like that going over well...

'mudge - the active ingredient in mucinex is guaifenesin - which is in the pseudovent that they gave me (as well as pseudoephedrine) so i guess i'm already taking mucinex for all intensive purposes - helping but not getting rid of the cough... i'm telling you, i'm ensconced in da CRUD!

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 11:43 AM | Report abuse

The Maryland State Song is pretty awful, but nobody knows it. Every few years, a freshman state senator discovers the words and introduces a bill to get a new state song. Then it quietly dies, when they discover that nobody cares about the state having a song.

I only discovered the words when I heard part of it on the only one of Ken Burns' Civil War episodes I was able to slog through. It's from a truly awful poem published in the Baltimore Sun, editorializing on the noble sacrifice of pro-slavery rioters who were 'massacred' by fresh Union recruits on their way to the front, when they were marching between train statioree"ns in Baltimore. The crowd attacked the soldiers with stones, killing several, before the soldiers finally fired on the crowd. I'm not sure, but I think more soldiers were killed by stones, than "Sons of Liberty" were killed by bullets. This bit of doggerel is set, most marvelously, to the music known variously as "Oh, Christmas Tree", "O Tanenbaum", or ... "Maryland, my Maryland":

O Maryland, my Maryland,
the despot's heel is on thy shore!
O Maryland, my Maryland,
the despot's heel is on thy shore!
Avenge the patriotic gore
that flecked the streets of Baltimore!
O Maryland, my Maryland,
the despot's heel is on thy shore!

Ya gotta love those exclamation points.

There's a lot more, that I gather is overtly racist and favoring the "good old days," but I am glad to say that I don't know it.

Posted by: Tim | March 3, 2006 11:45 AM | Report abuse

mo, there's four commonwealtheseseseses: Virginia, Kentucky, Mass. and Pennsylvania, plus Puerto Rico is both a territory and a commonwealth.

Could everyone please stop doing their state songs? Otherwise I shall be forced to do "Maryland, My Maryland," and then you'll all be sorry. (Upon reflection, maybe I should do the song of the place I was born, Fuldullfya, Pennsylvania, whose state song, if I recall, was "South Street." ["Where do all the hippies meet, South Street, South Street..."])

(Loomis, I know you were wondering: that translates to "Wo geht al der Hippies hin? Sudstrasse, Sudstrasse," which is what we used to sing in Herr Fink's Deutsche Klasse in hochschule.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Oh crap. BOOOed again--Tim beat me to Maryland my Maryland.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 11:47 AM | Report abuse

I said: statioree"ns

I wonder what that was?

stations

Posted by: Tim | March 3, 2006 11:48 AM | Report abuse

ok - not only did i not know my state's song - i was wrong about there being only two commonwealtheseseseseses... i *truely* am scum... with crud...

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 11:54 AM | Report abuse

"Oh, darkeys, how my heart grows weary"

*Big sigh* Can't believe they still use that for the state song, bertooch. I wonder if ol' Jeb Bush sings that song with pride?

Hope Cassandra doesn't read that; someone will have to sedate her (and it'd be hard to blame her).

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 11:57 AM | Report abuse

if you google (your state) state song the page that comes up first (at least for me) has a MIDI link so that can listen to the music (but not the lyrics being sung).

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 11:59 AM | Report abuse

and now a note from our sponsors -

Find your official state song HERE! at http://www.50states.com/songs/
Does your state song conjure up good 'ole memories of racism and slavery? Go to our web site and find out! Does it advocate "avenging the patriotic gore?" Does it give thanks to the hard working coalminers? Or is it just a beautiful love song with no reference to anything your lovely state has to offer? Go to
http://www.50states.com/songs/ to find out.

Now back to our regularly scheduled program...

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Actually, just go here:

http://www.50states.com/songs/

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 12:01 PM | Report abuse

'Tis a bit too ID for me, but here's New Hampshire's song:

With a skill that knows no measure,
From the golden store of Fate
God, in His great love and wisdom,
Made the rugged Granite State;
Made the lakes, the fields, the forests;
Made the Rivers and the rills;
Made the bubbling, crystal fountains
Of New Hampshire's Granite Hills.

Old New Hampshire, Old New Hampshire
Old New Hampshire Grand and Great
We will sing of Old New Hampshire,
Of the dear old Granite State

Builded He New Hampshire glorious
From the borders to the sea;
And with matchless charm and splendor
Blessed her for eternity.
Here, the majesty of mountain;
Here, the grandeur of the lake;
Here, the truth as from the hillside
Whence her crystal waters break.

Old New Hampshire, Old New Hampshire
Old New Hampshire Grand and Great
We will sing of Old New Hampshire,
Of the dear old Granite State

Posted by: Scottynuke | March 3, 2006 12:02 PM | Report abuse

HAH! omni booo'd! *dances around the boodle - then stops to hack up a lung*

(can anyone tell that work is DEAD for me today?)

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I'm pretty hesitant to look mup Wyoming's state song. It's the state of Dick Cheney and Brokeback Mountain. The mind boggles with possibilities.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | March 3, 2006 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Booo hoooohoooohoooo

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 12:04 PM | Report abuse

I had that same cold I think, I mean the cold it self was mild and lasted a couple of days but the hacking cruddy cough has persisted. for over a month now. Maybe I'll stop by CVS and pick up some of that Mucinex (does it cause drowsiness???)

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 12:08 PM | Report abuse

mo, try this combination: homemade chicken broth, vitamin C, and love coming at you from the boodlers. Twill soothe your cough and warm the cockles of your heart.

When Ray Charles' GEORGIA first came out, my girlfriends and I thought he was singing about a woman and wished our name was "Georgia".

Posted by: Nani | March 3, 2006 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Lest I be accused of picking on the White House try cutting and pasting the following:

http://www.rinkworks.com/dialect/dialectp.cgi?dialect=redneck&url=http%3A%2F%2Fblog.washingtonpost.com%2Fachenblog

Posted by: RD Padouk | March 3, 2006 12:17 PM | Report abuse

off-topic (par for the course and my "m.o." today hah!) are there any boodlers that haven't been to DC? i was thinking as i drove into work today that i drive past, like 5 or 6 NATIONAL monuments, park my car in another national monument, walk past two more national monuments and WORK in a freakin national momument with a view of two additional national monuments... just a random thought i had as i was driving... traffic'll do that to you!

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 12:19 PM | Report abuse

There was a neat interview on All Things Considered last night with a guy who does diversity training. He described the culmination of a 2-day workshop he did with a newspaper staff in some backwater part of Mississippi. Many of the paper's African-American staff had referenced some of the major and minor slights that had shown them that racism is an active part of American life. At the end of the workshop, there was one fellow, the classic stereotype of a good ol' boy (there's some irony for you about biases), who had tears rolling down his face. He acknowledged the truth in what he had heard and how bad it was. He described how his father and grandfather had raised him, and taught him values, and taught him to hunt and fish, and raised him to be a good man. But they were members of the Klan. What values had they transmitted to him that were evil? How could he still love them, understanding what their Klan membership meant?

We have a big stain on our history, it runs deep, and it colors a lot of our lives today. If we simply write off as evil everyone and everything that carries some of that stain, then we have to write off the worth of practically anyone (white) who was born in this country. The only way for us to survive into the future as a healthy society is to acknowledge our past, to resolve to be better, and to do it. We can't shunt aside our past -- the only way to do so is to deport every white person with ancestors from before the Civil Rights Act. That won't happen. You can't improve a society by getting rid of its members. So we need to figure out how to keep what's good from our history, and make it more of what we are today. To do otherwise is like educating kids by expelling students who don't get A's on every test. The few who graduate will be excellent students -- but they won't ever take any intellectual risks, and they'll be precious few.

All of which is to say: instead of abandoning our old state songs, howzabout we just rewrite them to eliminate the bad parts and keep the good, and keep the memory of the awful things that the song used to celebrate, as well. Otherwise, we are in the position of forgetting history. And you know where that leads.

Posted by: Tim | March 3, 2006 12:19 PM | Report abuse

The Wyo. state song was a graduation requirement from one prof, at University of Wyoming-- that we REALLY know all of it. Lotsa humming now whenever it is played. Not often.

Cheney watch: As usual, the current Nation mag has a stern, but realistic take on the Cheney/quail episode. Most likely the quail have clipped wings so that they can't fly very high...this is sport?

Posted by: thereIsaidit | March 3, 2006 12:23 PM | Report abuse

The point of my posts was not to make fun (especially not if it is offensive to anyone), but point out one of the major lessons I have learned at this conference. The internet is a shockingly powerful way to spread bad and distorted information. The premise of the conference is that many places in the world are "rumor-based" because nobody trusts the government or the press. Further, this information can be easily distorted. Then right in the middle of all this comes the video. Suddenly many thoughtful people here began realizing that the US is not immune to this phenomenon. How many Americans believe some random blog or website over our own government? Or our own press? This is sad and scary.

Posted by: RD Padouk | March 3, 2006 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Man I hate this internet thing sometimes. Reading my post might make it seem as if I am defending the government. I'm not. My point is that it is sad and scary that the government, through it's own incompetence, is losing the trust of its own people.

Posted by: RD Padouk | March 3, 2006 12:31 PM | Report abuse

mo: hot water poured over lemon w/ a little bit of honey usually does the trick. also, I love DC, visited many a time, used to live in northern VA (Farifax). monuments are amazing, especially at night when they're all lit up. If anyone hasn't been to DC, you are really missing out.
no idea what CT's state song is, or if we even have one. probably something about UConn basketball, the primary topic of conversation this time of year.

Posted by: tangent | March 3, 2006 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: amo | March 3, 2006 09:22 AM That's worse than incompetence, that's 'let them eat cake.' ..... He basically let 3000 or so people die and gives us the equivalent of an 'oops'.

Dear Amo: What part of incompetent ON PURPOSE don't you understand??? Here, let me help....
a mentally defective
person is incompetent to care for himself and requires a
legal guardian.
[1913 Webster +PJC]

Richard III. had a resolution, out of hatred to his
brethren, to disable their issues, upon false and
incompetent pretexts, the one of attainder, the
other of illegitimation. --Bacon.
[1913 Webster]

We say of an idiot that he is incapable of
learning to read;

Moby Thesaurus words for "incompetent":
awkward, base, blank cartridge, bungling, castrato, clumsy,
defective, deficient, disqualified, dud, dull tool, eunuch,
failing, found wanting, gauche, gelding, greenhorn, ill-equipped,
ill-fitted, ill-furnished, ill-provided, ill-qualified, imperfect,
impotent, inadequate, incapable, incapable of, incomplete,
ineffective, ineffectual, inefficient, ineligible, inept, inexpert,
inferior, insufficient, invalid, lacking, little, maladjusted,
maladroit, mean, mediocre, mediocrity, no conjuror, not comparable,
not enough, not equal to, not in it, not up to, out of it, petty,
shabby, small, too little, trivial, unable, unable to, unadapted,
unadjusted, unarmed, unendowed, unequal to, unequipped, unfit,
unfitted, ungifted, unprovided, unqualified, unsatisfactory,
unsatisfying, unskilled, unskillful, unsufficing, unsuited,
untalented, unworkmanlike, useless, wanting, weakling

Posted by: Merlin | March 3, 2006 12:39 PM | Report abuse

RD, as I've said before, the pesky thing about communicating through typed characters in one typeface that we can't choose (...) is that we can't communicate nuance or tone. That's why I use quotation marks a lot, to try to set aside things that I am saying in an arch manner, assuming the voice of someone with whom I disagree, for satirical purposes.

The thing about the internet is, nobody can tell you're a satirist.

I really have talked with people (well, one person) at Goddard Space Flight Center (surely a hotbed of intellectual rigor), who opined that she never reads the Washington Post, because they just make stuff up. That's why she reads the Washington Times.

Of course, GSFC also has a Bible Club that regularly features talks and movies by creationists, ID proponenets, young Earth theorists, and so on. People looking for photographic confirmation of Noah's Ark on Ararat. Oof.

Posted by: Tim | March 3, 2006 12:40 PM | Report abuse

I think Joel sounds best in Elmer Fudd:

It's not Gwobaw Wawming Tuesday, but we can stiww mention GwoWaw, wight? Check out Juwiet Eiwpewin's stowy on the 36 cubic miwes of ice being wost annuawwy fwom the Antawctic peninsuwa.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 3, 2006 12:41 PM | Report abuse

sheesh, the man gets no respect.

Posted by: kbertocci | March 3, 2006 12:46 PM | Report abuse

It's funny, when I set RD Padouk's Dialectizer to translate that White House Statement in "Moron" it didn't change a word!

Posted by: TBG | March 3, 2006 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Tim! I think you would like this conference. We talked a lot about distortion of imagery, including the picture of the face on Mars. Surprisingly, there are still people who don't believe it is natural. They think the latest pics are part of a Conspiracy. The scariest thing we have discussed is what a dreadful job the US is doing in countering the rumors that run rampant in other countries. Did you know that in many central American countries some people believe that Americans come down and steal their children for body parts? What's doing us in internationally is the word on the street, which is, increasingly, the internet. Anyway - sorry again if I offended anybody with my "dialect" thing. Only after I thought about it did I realize that some might not get the underlying point.

Posted by: RD Padouk | March 3, 2006 12:49 PM | Report abuse

LOOMIS: on: The Simpsons (Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie) are funny. The results of the survey are not.

Exactly what Cheese has always maintained....but woe is me. Even with the trove of great American humorists to draw from, it's Bart that is most often quoted by those under the age of 40. The younger generation was quick to recognize themselves and grab on to something here and who can blame them in the great loneliness of today's long distance runners.

Posted by: Cheesehead | March 3, 2006 12:51 PM | Report abuse

The internet may be hard on satirists, but it's heaven for satyrists.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | March 3, 2006 12:59 PM | Report abuse

In 2000 I told a friend who expressed the opinion that she couldn't bring herself to vote for Gore because she didn't like him but thought Bush was likeable "that this is for the Office of the President of the USA, not your High School class president." I also told her that Bush is an inarticulate buffoon (and a liar). And that if he passes even one thing he promises to in his campaign it will be a disaster for this country. Well IIRC the only thing he campaigned on that passed were his tax cuts for the wealthy. And yet he still managed to completely screw up everything else he's touched.

God I wish I were Canadian or British or Australian or anywhere else the official language is English!!!!!!!!!!(and I'm agnostic, so you know when I invoke the supreme deity I really really mean it)

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 1:09 PM | Report abuse

SCC one thing => one quarter of the things

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 1:10 PM | Report abuse

TBG, that's a riot...

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 1:11 PM | Report abuse

The Simpsons is an outstanding example of continuing brilliance. Committees can do the job, in some cases.

I'm dry in print, but my storytelling niche is in humorous stories. There are some people who tell teaching stories that are freighted with meaning and portent, who bemoan those of us who tell humorous stories. "Oh, if only you would tell some really good stories." "I think you could tell a really powerful story, if you tried." (Actually, that was said to a freind of mine -- for one reason or another, nobody says that to me).

Well, we humorous tellers can tell those serious stories if we want, and occasionally we do, just to prove the point or because it's a good story. Sometimes I tell them as humorous stories -- you can do it just by a change of tone and pacing. But very few people can tell humorous stories. When serious people try consciously to be funny, it's cringe-inducing.

If you see only farce and idiocy on the Simpsons, then they've done their job -- they've evaded your defenses and planted a social message in your brain, without making you defensive. I venture to say that the Simpsons is the most effective teacher of humanistic values in this country. It's not humor hiding a message. It's just that nothing is funny if it's about something that people don't care about. If it's funny to you, then it's important; if it's important to you, then it's probably possible (not easy) to make it funny. That's why black humor is funny. And humor is only funny if it conveys Truth.

I have suddenly realized why liberals are funnier than conservatives: because liberal humor is based on an understanding of people, and conveys a message about humanity. Conservative humor is about transmitting a political message, a political theory, and is funny only if you accept the message already. Notice that I didn't say it's not right -- it's just not funny. The only reason that P. J. O'Rourke ever is funny is because his whole shtick pokes fun at his own exaggerated pomposity. The thing is, I'm not sure that he realizes that. I think he's like that naturally, and believes that he's really making funny on purpose. But maybe he's a more consummate professional than I realize.

Posted by: StorytellerTim | March 3, 2006 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Here's what i must of sounded like because she ended up voting for Nader:

In 2000 I told a friend who expressid de opinion dat she cuddn't brigg hehself t' bote f' Gore cuz she didn't like him but dought Bush was likeaggle "dat dis is f' de Office of de President of de USA, not your High School class president." I also told heh dat Bush is an inarticulate buffoon (and a liar). Uhhh.... And dat if he passes eben one digg he promises t' in his campaign it will be a disasteh f' dis country. Webuhll IIRC de on digg he campaignid on dat passid webuhre his tax cuts f' the, uh, the wealdy. Lee me lone! And yet he still managid to c'plete screw up ebehydigg else he's touched.

God I wish I webuhre Canadian or British or Australian or anywhehe else de official language is English! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!! Doihh, COOL!(and I'm agnostic, so you know when I inboke the, ERRRR, supreme deity I real real mean it)

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 1:15 PM | Report abuse

omni, a little Joseph Heller from Catch-22, just for you-

"What the hell are you getting so upset about?" he asked her bewilderedly in a tone of contrite amusement. "I thought you didn't believe in God."

"I don't," she sobbed, burting violently into tears. "But the God I don't believe in is a good God, a just God, a merciful God. He's not the mean and stupid God you make him out to be."

Yossarian laughed and turned her arms loose. "Let's have a little more religious freedom between us," he proposed obligingly. "You don't believe in a God you want to, and I won't believe in a God I want to. Is that a deal?"

Posted by: kurosawaguy | March 3, 2006 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Dear Omni, I hate to inform you that in Canada the official langugeSSSS are French and English. There are whole vast neighbourhoods where people don't speak English, and the the joke about a past prime minister was that he could speak neither of the official languages.

Posted by: dr | March 3, 2006 1:17 PM | Report abuse

I've got an idea, we need a screen reader which will render text in the appropriate language and regional accent sd tagged by the poster. HAL? XML tags OK here? Boodle Toolbar anyone?

For what it's worth, "Sir Siphon" and "Earl of Electrolux" aren't bad handles either.

Whaddaya think Bayou? Add to the inventory, along with "Bonsai Kittens" and "The Periodic Table of Blondness"?

Do you get royalties on these posts?

Posted by: Error Flynn | March 3, 2006 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Tim, can you find out if there's a chapter of the Hollow Earth Society at GSFC?

On a slightly different note, I've said it before, and I'll say it again:
People are people.
The Internet is no better or worse than any other tool humans have ever used to communicate.
The Human Story continues to be told with a seemingly infinte amount of shading, but remains recongnizeable as the same story, millennia after it started.

At least it feels the same.

bc

Posted by: bc | March 3, 2006 1:20 PM | Report abuse

ok - sorry to go back to state songs but it has to be said - the state song for CT is (no lie!) Yankee Doodle!!

Posted by: mo | March 3, 2006 1:25 PM | Report abuse

D'oh, yes dr, I did know that. But I would obviously have to limit my emigration anywhwere but Quebec, as I am severely langauge learning impaired. (ha, I checked wikipedia so as not to come off as a complete buffoon for failing to realize that not all of English speaking Canada is west of Quebec, whew).

Also want to add: I went to Quebec on a class trip in 1980 and had blast. Also went on a business trip to Ottowa and mixed some pleasure in the evenings (not that kind people), went to some museums, saw some live bands. I really like Canadians, good people.

Posted by: omni | March 3, 2006 1:26 PM | Report abuse

RD, I'm having just a little trouble beleiving that people in your industry (and I am making wild assumptions about what that is) did not know this. I sense a serious dissconnect here. All you had to do to understand what people will choose to beleive is to go down your grocery store checkout and look for any number of enquirer type rags. I know perfectly sane people who really beleive the stuff they read in them. Its sao sad, and its impossible to get them to see the error of their ways.

It does tie in to something I have been pondering on the last week or so about wars and ideas. It seems when war is about borders or the covetous nature of man, its a winnable war. And I do put WW 2 into this category. But make it a war about an idea, and there is no way to win. The idea will out.

Posted by: dr | March 3, 2006 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Error - Those are excellent. (Might I add that the 'Boodle handles shtick is a variant on Dave Barry's "good name for a rock band" shtick.) My royalties come from the satisfaction of a job well done!

Posted by: Bayou Self | March 3, 2006 1:33 PM | Report abuse

TIM: We can't shunt aside our past -- the only way to do so is to deport every white person with ancestors from before the Civil Rights Act.

Mama replies to Sir Tim: For years, I have sincerely tried (that is, with all possible expediency and earnest intent) to "shunt aside" (ditch, trash, turn a blind eye, lapse into divine amnesia accidentally on purpose) my "past" (some of the most flipped out funnest d*** times I have been blessed to remember-especially the morning after, ouch). So far, I regret to confess, I have failed to successfully expunge the adventure of it.
Does make for great reading though.

But I'm with you on the part about deporting the (deleted).
- for your all's sake, I ran this thru the thingy, converting Mama to what most of you would recognize as a "nice lady who speaks in complete sentences and can form a concept worthy of being offered up in the elite company of said enterprise" although that would not be the biggest compliment Mama has ever blushed to receive. No sir, not by a longshot.

Posted by: Nachomama | March 3, 2006 1:34 PM | Report abuse

MO DAHLIN: ok - sorry to go back to state songs but it has to be said - the state song for CT is (no lie!) Yankee Doodle!!

I KNEW it! Cheesehead knows this song.
Yes!

Posted by: Cheesehead | March 3, 2006 1:35 PM | Report abuse

TIM: When serious people try consciously to be funny, it's cringe-inducing.

Well that's it: I've just been outted!

Posted by: Cheesehead | March 3, 2006 1:40 PM | Report abuse

That's a feather in your cap, cheesehead, and you can call it macaroni. A "macaroni" in the era of the song was a dandy or fop, a stylish dresser.

Posted by: shiloh | March 3, 2006 1:44 PM | Report abuse

TIM: Great insights. Thanks.
"If you see only farce and idiocy on the Simpsons, then they've done their job -- they've evaded your defenses and planted a social message in your brain, without making you defensive"

Sorry, they did a job on me all right. And I evaded them entirely, me and my barf bag. I am just living in the wrong milleniannia I guess, because they induce in me only a profound disconnect. I do not get them at all. Do you have a diagnosis?

Posted by: Cheesehead | March 3, 2006 1:46 PM | Report abuse

KGUY: "I don't," she sobbed, burting violently into tears.

Hey, you gave me that one on a silver platter

Posted by: Nachomama | March 3, 2006 1:48 PM | Report abuse

kberto, I knew what the song was but those lyrics are atrocious!

Merlin,

Is it your premise that Bush deliberately murdered the residents of NO through depraved indifference to human life?

Posted by: amo | March 3, 2006 1:58 PM | Report abuse

dr - The IC is huge and extremely segmented. Many, many people live and breath this kind of stuff, just not me. My area of expertise is far more geeky. Nevertheless, it is hoped that sticking me in a conference like this might stimulate "synergistic solutions," whatever those are... And yes, your observation about winning a war of ideas cuts to the center of the problem.

Posted by: RD Padouk | March 3, 2006 2:00 PM | Report abuse

AMO to MERLIN: Is it your premise that Bush deliberately murdered the residents of NO through depraved indifference to human life?

MERLIN to AMO: HELLO!! EARTH to AMO...
No, my premise is that he is an extremely compassionate, open-minded, altruistic and generous sort of a guy. SHAZZAM!

Posted by: Merlin | March 3, 2006 2:05 PM | Report abuse

>lapse into divine amnesia accidentally on purpose

With apologies to Jim Carroll:

"The more that you remember
the more your self-respect decreases
When you can't keep the night before
from coming back in bits and pieces..."

Posted by: Error Flynn | March 3, 2006 2:05 PM | Report abuse

dr: "but make it a war about an idea, and there's no way to win."

where does the "war on terror" fit into this, i wonder? isn't terror a state of mind, extremely heightened anxiety? an...idea? maybe a stretch. but if so, this war can't be won, yes? maybe W should check this theory out.
too late.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 3, 2006 2:05 PM | Report abuse

sorry, the 2:05 was me.

Posted by: tangent | March 3, 2006 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Did someone say possum?
Tower: "Eastern 702, cleared for takeoff, contact Departure on
frequency 124.7"
Eastern 702: "Tower, Eastern 702 switching to Departure. By the way,
after we lifted off we saw some kind of dead animal on the far end of
the runway."
Tower: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff behind Eastern 702,
contact Departure on frequency 124.7. Did you copy that report from
Eastern 702?"
BR Continental 635: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff, roger; and
yes, we copied Eastern... we've already notified our caterers."

Posted by: bbking | March 3, 2006 2:11 PM | Report abuse

An addict is the most selfish person in existence. He/she will lie, cheat, steal and run you over to get the fix. To be a sober addict means to refrain from using the substance. But, that does not mean the selfishness, the "I am the only real person in the world" attitude has been revamped. We have a selfish and egocentric president. He has craven advisors. Remember the top WH official who explained to the reporter, "We decide what is reality." Put the team together and you get exactly the results we have seen.

Democracy isn't pretty, but it is the best system humans have found so far. A democracy can be completely perverted with enough money and motivation. What has prevented this complete perversion in the past is the rule of law. And specifically, I would suggest, laws that protect the minority from the domination of the majority.

Jefferson insisted on protection from the "tyranny of the majority" and we got the Bill of Rights - the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
This is easier to see in recent times, when the majority is either fictitious or so close to 50-50 that the word majority barely can be applied. And this alleged majority has been subverting the Bill of Rights at every turn.

A unitary presidency is tyranny of the majority. Getting elected is not license to undermine the Bill of Rights or the rest of the Constitution.

DV

Posted by: DoubleVision | March 3, 2006 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Storyteller Tim, Dave Chappelle was on Inside the Actors Studio recently and expressed your same point of view about humor. Only the truth is funny. His remarkable skit about a blind black member of the KKK is not only hilarious, but demonstrates the utter stupidty of racism. (And I also appreciated and agree with the points you made in your 12:19 post).

Posted by: Nani | March 3, 2006 2:14 PM | Report abuse

MAMA's TWIN SISTER:
While taxiing at London's Gatwick Airport, the crew of a US Air flight
departing for Ft. Lauderdale made a wrong turn and came nose to nose
with a United 727.
An irate female ground controller lashed out at the US Air crew,
screaming: "US Air 2771, where the hell are you going?! I told you to
turn right onto Charlie taxiway! You turned right on Delta! Stop right
there. I know it's difficult for you to tell the difference between C
and D, but get it right!"

Continuing her rage to the embarrassed crew, she was now shouting
hysterically: "God! Now you've screwed everything up! It'll take forever
to sort this out! You stay right there and don't move till I tell you
to! You can expect progressive taxi instructions in about half an hour,
and I want you to go exactly where I tell you, when I tell you, and how
I tell you! You got that, US Air 2771?"

"Yes, ma'am," the humbled crew responded.

Naturally, the ground control communications frequency fell terribly
silent after the verbal bashing of US Air 2771. Nobody wanted to chance
engaging the irate ground controller in her current state of mind.

Tension in every cockpit out around Gatwick was definitely running
high.

Just then an unknown pilot broke the silence and keyed his microphone,
asking: "Wasn't I married to you once?"

Posted by: Nachomama | March 3, 2006 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, read your post and the one above it. I don't need a sedative, wouldn't really help, doesn't change anything. A lot of state songs have that racist bent, even some of their laws. There isn't any part of life that racism doesn't touch, it even follows us to the grave. As if being dead, there's some special place for white and black folks. To my understanding, and I've come to this conclusion from reading the Holy Scriptures, it's either Hell or Heaven, and we get to make that choice. What I don't understand, and I may never understand this, is why would people go along with the circumstances pertaining to Katrina and New Orleans? I mean we know that the situation was not done right, and that it constitutes a real wrong, why aren't people up in arms about it, say like they were when Bill Clinton was accused of what he did? Isn't the loss of life of so many even in the neighborhood of that crime? Perhaps I'm not putting it well, but I have a hard time understanding these things, I really do. I guess my life, and my people's lives, just aren't that important here or anywhere.

Posted by: Cassandra S | March 3, 2006 2:15 PM | Report abuse

KGUY: The internet may be hard on satirists, but it's heaven for satyrists.

Would that be sad trists or sad iris or satty wrists?

Ease up, he cried....

Posted by: Cheesehead | March 3, 2006 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Mama Said: lapse into divine amnesia accidentally on purpose

Error Said: With apologies to Jim Carroll:
"The more that you remember
the more your self-respect decreases
When you can't keep the night before
from coming back in bits and pieces..."

Lapse would be putting it kindly (in deference to age perhaps), Erros, to which you could attest, no doubt? And we're talking more like chunks off the intercontinental shelf here...nothing bitsy about em.

And remember, son, overlooking a strength is just as dishonest as denying a shortcoming


Posted by: Nachomama | March 3, 2006 2:26 PM | Report abuse

I don't like Mr. Bush but don't believe he let anything happen because he's racist. It's just that he can't conceive of someone not being able to take a corporate charter out when needed. He has little experience actually reacting to the real world when family friends bail him out of companies and his minions spin reality and fix up his statements after the fact. This is a bit different than those of us who actually have jobs where you need to personally make something happen and are held accountable for it. But not racist.

That said, if you haven't heard "George Bush Don't Like Black People" you're missing a good laugh.

Posted by: Error Flynn | March 3, 2006 2:29 PM | Report abuse

and anyway, Mama doesn't want her pasts expunged until she's had a chance to get even with a few people.

Posted by: Nachomama | March 3, 2006 2:30 PM | Report abuse

SHILOH 1:44: That's a feather in your cap, cheesehead, and you can call it macaroni. A "macaroni" in the era of the song was a dandy or fop, a stylish dresser.

Here in OK we say: Don't praise my charms too much, people may say...


Posted by: Cheesehead | March 3, 2006 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Psst. New kit. Get your Oscar predictions out like I told you to this morning.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 3, 2006 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Hey Cassandra,

As a friend once noted (I don't think it was original), stupidity is a capital crime, and Mother Nature is a hanging judge. However, that only applies in a survival situation -- that is, when your own survival is at risk. So, Mr. Bush escapes that prosecution.

Public officials, to the best of my knowledge, are granted immunity from personal prosecution for conducting their professional responsibilities ineptly or incompetently. Abusing the office is another matter. It is the job of the Constitutional machinery and the American voters to ensure that the competent are installed in office, by installing elected officials of sound judgment and wisdom, who are entrusted with the delegation of responsibility to persons they judge to be competent and wise. The upshot is, we installed a divisive, mendacious, unwise, and incompetent individual. This might have been arguable in 2000, but the evidence was incontrovertible by 2004. Therefore, it's our fault, even those of us who voted against him, because we failed to mount a suffiicently persuasive case for any alternative candidate. We had the opportunity. We had the evidence. We even have plenty of smart and capable people. And we nominated John Kerry. Oy.

What about the "I" word? Impeachment is for "high crimes and misdemeanors." I don't think incompetence is on that list. A President can be removed if he is deemed unfit for office (i.e., technically alive but brain-dead, in a perennial alcoholic stupor, etc.). Up to now, that has been handled by good fortune -- the President agreed in advance to the hand-over of power (Nixon, Reagan under surgery), he outright died, or he was so clearly incapacitated that there was no real question. I have no idea what is the Constitutional machinery to remove a sitting President against his will, purely on the grounds of being unfit or unable to fulfill the responsibilities of office. There is no basis for a national recall election if the outcome of the original election is uncontested.

Posted by: Tim | March 3, 2006 2:41 PM | Report abuse

We can make apologies all day and all night, but the bottom line is that, the people that needed to know, knew, and everyone skipped off and did something else, and there is no changing that fact. And I realize that folks don't like to hear the words, racists, racism, or any thing close to that, but one has to think, why didn't he ask at least one question, and why didn't he stay with the situation, instead of going off somewhere else. Why were these people's lives of no value? And that's exactly what needs to be ask if nothing is done, because that is what this country will be saying if nothing is done about this. Their lives held no value, so we go on as if nothing really happened. I can't help the way I feel about this, because it not a first time thing. So many times in this country we sweep one thing after the other under the rug, and African-Americans always seem expendable no matter the situation, and it just hurts. It hurts. And it is a hurt that does not go away.

Posted by: Cassandra S | March 3, 2006 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Other kit or no, this one belongs here.

The war on terror is a war of the mind in every way. The whole Western world Arabic world is an issue of mind. The only way to win these things even though oil might be part of it, and money might be part of it, is to win their minds, and if in 100 years we have not done it, I don't think we will win them over to our way of thinking now.

Posted by: dr | March 3, 2006 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Mama said: "And remember, son, overlooking a strength is just as dishonest as denying a shortcoming"

Oh man, Nachomama is channeling Sherlock Holmes. I'm going back to work!

Posted by: Error Flynn | March 3, 2006 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Like I said a week ago, I gottahandita Cassandra:
Q:Isn't the loss of life of so many even in the neighborhood of that crime?

A+ oh thou of a thousand twinkling wisdoms. It was a brilliant stroke of political genius and let us hope, one that remains in the public consciousness at election time. And Cheesehead will certainly do his part to make this happen (see Dick and Harry on Safari - oh, you missed that too? aha. well, don't be thinking you alone are unappreciated)

A: I guess my life, and my people's lives, just aren't that important here or anywhere.

A: Believe me, M'am there are more many "oafs" than I care to count that are not "of our people" and, well, they'll just have to get used to the disappointment

Posted by: Cheesehead | March 3, 2006 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Error said Mama said: "And remember, son, overlooking a strength is just as dishonest as denying a shortcoming"

Error said :Oh man, Nachomama is channeling Sherlock Holmes. I'm going back to work!

OK have it your way: Overlooking future prosecution is just as dishonest as denying an illustrious past


Posted by: Nachomama | March 3, 2006 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra, to my sorrow it still is an issue. This too is a battle of minds, and its been fought for a long long time, Several hundred years. I don't think there has ever been a time in any nation where racism is looked at and reasoned through and dissucssed like it is now. Perhaps its our best modern encouragement that over time a war of ideas is win-able, but its just going to take longer, and more time than any of us would have hoped for.

Posted by: dr | March 3, 2006 3:03 PM | Report abuse

One glimmer of hope, Cassandra. Here in academe, supposedly surrounded by the brightest young chits in the pot, i frequently see evidence that the old days upon the Swannee river are entirely forgotten. Race is just not thought of as an issue in the sense that (I hope a large percentage of )these young people simply would not consider the option of behaving in the brutish manner of their ape-ish white ancestors. Small comfort but some.
Of course, when they are outnumbered by Hispanics they may experience genetic regression instantaneously.

Posted by: Merlin | March 3, 2006 3:10 PM | Report abuse

I did not mean to kill the boodle, my bad. It's just that tears are streaming down my face, and I feel so full. I will pray, and seek comfort in God, through Christ, and He alone will heal my broken heart, and remove the hurt I feel so keenly. Please don't any of you think that we can just do the nice words and walk away from this, because we can't. May God have mercy on our souls.

Posted by: Cassandra S | March 3, 2006 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra, some of us have different definitions of racism. I believe Mr. Bush is both incompetent, racist and incapable of truly caring for his fellow man. His performance after 9/11 and after Katrina makes it clear (to me at least) that he places lesser value on the lives of those he feels are not important as others. He won't give grieving mother, Cindy Sheehan, 15 minutes of his time because she disagrees with him, but graciously introduces the family of another slain soldier to the audience at his SOTU (who don't oppose the war) to a standing ovation. This is "racism" in my humble view.

Posted by: Nani | March 3, 2006 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I don't believe global warming exists no matter how much evidence they come up with to support it:
http://jonswift.blogspot.com/2006/01/whos-afraid-of-global-warming.html

Posted by: Jon Swift | March 4, 2006 12:07 AM | Report abuse

Swift wrote:
"I don't believe global warming exists no matter how much evidence they come up with to support it"

Maybe this will help:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9527485/

Why is it that when people get sick they expect science to save them but when they are well, science is a threat to their religion and income?

Posted by: Anonymous | March 4, 2006 8:20 AM | Report abuse

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Posted by: insurance auto | June 21, 2006 12:03 AM | Report abuse

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