Monday, February 27, 2006

Is Bush Worse Than Clinton?

That's the question they're asking over at Free Republic. Apparently he's not, as that would be impossible. Clinton, after all, skull screwed the American Way and actually worked as a drug mule for Al-Quaeda. The fact that they're wondering is pretty good evidence just how impressively Bush is screwing up. Think those guys are regretting those GW Heart tattoos? Word to the wise, demagogues are like girlfriends get their names in congi characters, that way you can deny when things go South.

Anyhoo, my big question, can't we move on from Clinton? It's like complaining about Ike (actually, either Ike, the president or the Tina beater) seems a bit dated. Beyond that, how is, "Bush is bad, but he's not Clinton bad," a position of any import? To paraphrase comedian Doug Stanhope how does your suck make my suck suck less? No body says, well, Pol Pot was bad, but he wasn't Hitler bad.

S.O.L.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Start effin

Shankar Vedantam revisits the greatest mudslide in the history of America's intellectual erosion, "intelligent design." Highlights:

- The world's smallest violin plays for biology professor Caroline Crocker, who claims she was fired from George Mason University for teaching intelligent design. She believes in creation, claims that there is "not a lot" of evidence for evolution, and sees her role as balancing "the 'ad nauseum' pro-evolution accounts that students had long been force-fed."

"Just like they say you can't discriminate against black people, or against gays, maybe they will say you can't discriminate against Darwin-doubters," Crocker told me.

- Vedantam says ID advocates believe the tables have been turned on them.

If Galileo and Copernicus were the scientific rebels who were once punished by the dogma and authority of the church, [intelligent design] advocates now believe that they are being punished by the dogma and authority of science.

- And finally, this tragically ironic proposition:

Given that traditional people tend to have larger families, and that the doubters of natural selection are more likely than not to be religious traditionalists, I asked [Richard] Dawkins whether natural selection may favor those who don't believe in it.

He said: "That's an interesting suggestion that natural selection may favor those who do not believe in natural selection. It might be true."

Yikes. That's interesting spin on theodicy. Into the sack, Darwinists!

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Happy birthday to Jay and hobbits everywhere..


Not to steal your thunder, but somewhere Sean Astin is celebrating his birthday today, as well.

Counting the passage of time


Our illustrious, if pseudonymous, JayinBmore is another year older today.

Happy Birthday JAY !

Friday, February 24, 2006

An emerging pattern?

Kerim from Savage Minds points out that former Harvard president Lawrence Summers is acting out an emerging pattern for [the] people [currently] in power.

1) Do something wrong in public, or get found out for clandestine wrongdoing
2) Denounce the ensuing flap as "liberal fluff" or "political correctness" regardless of the substantitive quality of the critique
3) Repeat step (1) only worse.
4) When you get in more serious trouble for (3), defend yourself by saying that you're being persecuted about (1), thus deflecting attention from (3) and upping your martyr credentials.

Incidentally, Summers, an economist, is also one of the 9 or ten people in the world who thinks that we need more pollution.

More on the impending apocalypse...


Blood Level
Originally uploaded by hamdpenarchy.
More and more, I come across things that cause my sense of impending doom (is that a super power?) to tingle. This map, courtesey of LeadSafeHomes.info is one of them. The map shows the distribution of children with blood lead levels higher than 10 nano micrograms per decileter, the CDC's level of concern. Luckily for us, today is the day that the new Zero Tolerance Rule takes effect here in Maryland. Only problem is that it doesn't effect owner occupied buildings (like mine). I guess its ok to give folks lead poisoning as long as you're willing to get sick along with them.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Land Etiquette

So, purely hypothetical. Just suppose that the hookers that live across the street from you have a fight and one gets evicted or kicked out or something and moves into a 72 Chevy with blacked out windows parked in front of your house. How long do you let her live there 'til you call the cops.

Purely hypothetical.

SOL

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Somebody gets it

S.O.L.'s "Aquapunuditry!" reminds me of an incident that occurred earlier today. I was teaching my weekly enrichment class to a bunch of 16-year old kids who couldn't care less about archaeology at a nearby alternative learning center. Several years ago, they had expressed an interest in learning about "cave men," so I put together a lesson that explained what people really mean when they talk about cave people. I began with the idea of "human origins" and in particular the earliest hominids (Australopithicenes) or human ancestors. (Try saying the phrase "Homo erectus" or Homo-anything in front of a bunch of adolescent males - they bag up for several minutes.)

I was explaining why these evolutionary precursors of humanity were a different species, and even genus from modern humans. We looked at slides of the fossil remains of homonids along with chronometric dating information. We discussed differences in cranial capacity, jaw size, dentition, and placement of the foramen magnum (the hole at the base of your skull). At one point, one of the kids made a comment about humans having sex with australopithicenes. I had to explain that just as humans were not around during the era of dinosars (and therefore couldn't have had sex with them), there were also no modern humans around during the time of A. afarensis or other Australopithicenes.

Another one of the kids piped up and said, " What about Moses and them? Weren't they around back then?" I then had to explain that Moses, if he lived, did so roughly 5,000 years ago, while the hominids under discussion were 2-5 million years old.

You could actually see the light bulb go on in this kid's head. "Man so the Bible ain't right about that. I knew it!" If I was a more gifted teacher, I might have steered the discusion toward the difference between spiritual and scientific truth, but I was just thrilled to have had a kid in this class appear to learn something. After a few minutes of discussion, I moved along with my lesson plan.

The point is not, I don't think, to introduce oppositional discourse into classrooms, but to present scientific evidence that allows kids to draw their own conclusions. Asking the right questions and presenting up-to-date science, that engages interest and promotes critical thinking is the way to go about this.

From The Bottom of the Marianas Trench I Give You: AQUAPUNDITRY!

From the observation bubble of my winter cottage here at the bottom of the Challenger Deep I am afforded time to think. You see, at these depths a lump of coal would be turned to diamond in a matter of mere millenia, in addition to keeping the pesky paparazzi at bay, this pressure serves to clear my head, squeezing out Mr. Bad Thoughts and making way for Madame Minds All Clear!

At these times, I like to focus on the sad plight of you gasping surface worlders. I am especially enamoured of your TV ads for lotion. As I bask on my clam-shell throne I am delighted by my luxuriously supple flanks. Moisture is a gift the sea provides in spades! No need to find it in a plasticene bottle, but I digress.

I have been most entertained and terrified by your debates over this "Inteligent Design." For the record, Aquapundit! (AKA SuperOceanLad) thinks it's crap. I know, I know, with the rippling musculature of my bronze skinned torso leading elegantly into my powerful be-scaled tail flukes and my ability to simultaneously please a human woman and a chilean sea bass with my "magic trident," you'd think I'd be the poster child for inteligent design. I, bible thumpers, am not.

Anyhoo, check this out. Aquapundit! says indeed, right on and preach it mutha 'effer! My favorite quote is from George Coyne, director of the Vatican Observatory who said, "The intelligent design movement belittles religion. It makes God a designer - an engineer," and this, people, is from the freakin' Vatican! It took them several hundred years of sailing all the way around the world and not falling off to admit this rock was round. Hop on board!

Aquapundit! says read it all you lazy lubbers!

S.O.L.

From the Files of 'Eff Squad

This is a bit horrifying, but a lesson must be learned. For those of you too lazy to click the link, a woman lost her arm in a car accident and the arm was found still clutching her cell phone (No word on whether her other arm was still clutching the vodka bottle). If you need a better illustration of the dangers of cell phone use while driving you've got issues. F.Y.I. SuperOceanLad never gets behind the control yoke of his aqua-buggy while talking on the phone. That is why Jesus made text messaging!

S.O.L.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Another Reason to Hate The Office

So this afternoon around 5pm I'm explaining to this colleague of mine at work that I was eagerly awaiting watching Torino tonight because there was a chance the US team would win the gold in couples-dance figure skating - one of the few entertaining and enjoyable sports I like to watch for the winter olympics - and that I had been following couples skating for the past few days and was waiting in anticipation for tonight's medal awards. Then this other colleague who heard the conversation walks by and she says, "They won the silver. I heard it this afternoon."

Thanks dude. If God is merciful you will lose your voice during the World Cup this summer.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

via tecum*

Monsignor Fukuyama administers last rites to neoconservatism. Of course, Fukuyama predicted the end of history. And, of course, in this article, he says he was misunderstood. But still, one of many harbingers. To date, I had wondered if, with a seemingly eternal war on terror, we'd be stuck with the fearmongering neocons forever. But it appears their Keystone Cop bungling has convinced even the average bugaboo that they can't even be trusted to perform even the most basic functions of government.

Exhibit A: 9/11
Exhibit B: Iraq
Exhibit C, and possibly the nail in the coffin, as it were: Katrina

We've got Iraq War veterans running for office as Democrats. And democracy abroad has brought us Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas.

And the cartoon violence has somehow played into the hands of the left. I would have thought that the barbaric, childish behavior of radical Muslims would have played into the hands of the right. "See," the right could have said, "they need to be managed. They need to be invaded and pacified and given some democratic castor oil."

But Republican rhetoric rings hollow on this one, I'm afraid. The party of Christ cannot condemn a religion because, well, they derive their mandate from religious loonies. You can't wear a cross around your neck and say, "Your religion is wrong, your religion is all messed up." Religious nuts don't have a leg to stand on. Sorry, the "but we're not violent" card isn't going to work. See Hitchens and Mencken.

The only convincing rhetoric in this case is coming from the agnostic left and the editor who made the decision to run the cartoons.

Not that the left is inspiring me, mind you. Check out the latest Democratic plan to combat stateless terrorism.

*on the way with you

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

cartoons

In light of the "cartoon violence" (hahaha, makes me think of Wile E. Coyote) and Hitchens' smackdown of all faiths, here's a Bush quote from last year:

"I fully understand that the job of the president is and must always be protecting the great right of people to worship or not worship as they see fit," Bush said.

"That's what distinguishes us from the Taliban. The greatest freedom we have or one of the greatest freedoms is the right to worship the way you see fit.

"On the other hand, I don't see how you can be president at least from my perspective, how you can be president, without a relationship with the Lord."

There's nothing I'd rather see.

Down with newspaper columnists

Jack Shafer, in bashing Kristof, gives all the columnists what for.

Those whom the gods wish to destroy they first make a newspaper columnist. Most columnists start off with a bag full of ideas and endless energy. But the job begins to weigh on even the most talented journalist. He starts writing columns about columns he's written, about his kids, or about the deaths of relatives. He composes columns as open letters to world leaders—or writes from inside their heads. He quotes cab drivers. His columns become more assertion than argument. Finally, he starts picking silly, protracted fights with other media machers.

I don't know why newspapers continue to give so much space to columnists. Let them start blogs, or stick them in gated communities like TimesSelect. I'd rather see an op-ed from someone who knows what he's talking about than hear another word from Brooks or Dowd.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Cheney Tackles Most Dangerous Game



Having failed to privatize Social Security, Cheney's apparently taken a new tack. He's cutting down the dole one seventy-eight year old dude at a time.

Nice shooting, dick.

S.O.L.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Congressional Muck

A few interesting Katrina related items came up late last week, the most high-profile being the bi-partisan hearings on response that put Michael Brown back on the hot seat. There is no question that the hearings revealed the existence of some new information that highlights old news: that the response was an utter failure on all levels. One can however make an argument (one I tend to buy) that the federal response or lack of should be considered the most egregious because only the federal government would have the resources to respond to a disaster the scale of Katrina, and also because the federal government, under Homeland Security, has been pushing nothing but preparedness preparedness preparedness for the past 5 years now, and was anything but prepared when it came to the hurricane.

I have no sympathy for Brown. At the same time, the hearings seem a bit off-center. Not that I don’t think that congress has an important role in investigating what went wrong and why, but because of the rotten feeling I, and no doubt many others, has that scapegoating Brown as public enemy #1 obfuscates congressional responsibility for the larger structural issues that characterize the disaster and its aftermath. Sure, no one really expects self-aggrandizing senators like Norm Coleman (R-MN) – former democratic mayor of St. Paul and my opinion one of the most politically expedient of the lot - or Joe Lieberman (D-CT) to suddenly go hell-bent in confronting manifest social inequality in this country. But there’s got to be more to the process than Coleman and Lieberman verbally burning Mike Brown to clear the congressional conscience of responsibility for Katrina and its aftermath. One small start might be for our elected representatives to leave DC for a few days and visit the devastation of the Gulf. This is exactly what an organization called Women of The Storm have been pushing for. So far, its been reported that two members of the House are taking them up on their offer: Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA) and Scott Garrett (R-NJ). Kudos to both Westmoreland and Garrett for getting off their duffs and out of the beltway. More of our officials should follow their example. I find it strange that foreign dignitaries like King Abdullah of Jordan has visited the Gulf, but the majority of the US Congress hasn't.

In another interesting news item about scapegoating, this weekend the Times-Picayune has a good story on evacuees who have relocated to Houston, TX. The “word” is that two particular populations were evacuated specifically to Houston because of proximity and resources, the very sick and the very dangerous. The Times-Picayune article examines some of the blame flowing for the upsurge in violent crimes in Houston, and relates how a significant portion of evacuees have relocated to some of the poorest neighborhoods in town. One wonders how tomorrow’s deadline for ceasing hotel payments will have any influence on swelling the numbers of homeless in states across the union and contributing to more human misery. Just in time for Valentine’s Day. The only good news is that on Wednesday the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced (with two confusing and ass-kissing references to the Bush administration) that about $500 million will be given to the states for relief. Our state has received a small chunk, although it is not yet decided whether they will use those funds to reimburse agency expenditures, fund future programs, or both. Much more is needed, but it’s a start.

Last but not least, it was nice to read The Washington Post’s Thursday article in its special reports series on the Vietnamese-American victims of Katrina, who make up a sizeable community in the Gulf. Kudos to the Post on this article about an often forgotten population of the Gulf who have been largely maligned for competing with white fishermen. The article is a reminder that, yes, Vietnamese-Americans are still Americans.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

President Meets Metallic Double

President George Bush was pushed to the end of his rope today when confronted by his bronzy doppelganger. Much like a German Shepherd gazing into a mirror, the leader of the free world stared uncomprehendingly at his own metallic image for nearly forty awkward minutes. Finally nervous handlers intervened, leading Potus away scratching him behind the neck and assuring him he's a good boy.

No one is quite sure what Bush was thinking. One camp is sure there was elation, "With this new race of hansom bronze supermen, no one will stand before the might of the U.S. of A!" Others noted his deeply furrowed brow and the odd whining sound he was making and assumed the worst, "Ack, my copper doppelganger will destroy us all and none will know his cold burnished gaze is not mine own! Quickly, to the hydrofoil!"


S.O.L.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Happily, Far Too Effin' Funny!

On a certain hack getting the sack from NASN, from Sadly, No!:

So he lied on his reesume so he could land a job that he was totally unqualified for. He sounds like the archetypal Bush administration appointee.

Indeed.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Incredipundit! Presents:

From Gordon At The Brain comes a tale so shocking you know it could only warrant Incredipundit!try. Read the transcript of the NOW interview with the Nation's Progressive of the Year, Larry Wilkerson. Much of this won't be news to regular RUFNKM readers, but Incredipundit! likes exactly the same part Gordon does:

DAVID BRANCACCIO: You're worried that we not have come to that but that we're heading down this path of--

LAWRENCE WILKERSON: Oh I think it's come to that. I think we've had some decisions at this administration that were more or less dictates. We've had a decision that the Constitution as read by Alberto Gonzales, John Yoo and a few other very selected administration lawyers doesn't pertain the way it has pertained for 200-plus years. A very ahistorical reading of the Constitution.

And these people marshal such stellar lights as-- Alexander Hamilton. They haven't even read Federalist Six. I'm sure they haven't. Where Alexander Hamilton lays down his markers about the dangers of a dictate-issuing chief executive. This is not the way America was intended to be run by its founders and it is not the interpretation of the Constitution that any of the founders as far as I read the Federalist Papers and other discussions about their views would have subscribed to. This is an interpretation of the constitution that is outlandish and as I said, clearly ahistorical.

DAVID BRANCACCIO: And if the system were shown to work that might be one thing. But-- in the case of recent US for--

LAWRENCE WILKERSON: Dictatorships work on occasion. You're right. Dictatorships do work but I-- I'm like Ferdinand Eberstadt. I'd prefer to see the squabble of democracy to the efficiency of dictators.

Indeed.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Super Bowl Predictions

First off, the score, Seattle 34 Pittsburgh 24

MVP Matt Hasselbeck

Further predictions, some one will complain about the dip.

Annoying girl will talk throughout game, only pay attention for commercials.

Dude will drink to much, tell coworkers what he really thinks of them.

Announcers will declare something the greatest something in Super Bowl History!

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Donovan, You're Way Off On This One

I'm not certain, but I'm pretty sure Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb is a regular reader, so I figured I'd give my two cents on his current T.O. row. For those of you who haven't been following but are still reading (I'm thinking four people), Donovan McNabb has claimed that Terrell Owens’s comments after last years Super Bowl were racially charged. In an interview, Owens agreed that the Eagles would be better off with Brett Favre at quarterback.

OK, I should be right up front about this, I'm not black. In fact, between my gills and powerful scaled tail and silvery dappled skin, I'd be hard pressed to be considered human., but the idea that this is a racial statement is absurd. McNabb says the fact that Favre was chosen for comparison over black quarterbacks Michael Vick, Daunte Culpepper, Steve McNair, Aaron Brooks and Byron Leftwich makes this akin to black on black crime. That Favre was chosen because he's white is an absurd idea. Favre was chosen because he's the only legendary quarterback in the game today.

Lets compare the numbers, Favre has thrown for 396 TDs, those other six combined for 371. Those six have one league MVP, Favre has three. Those six QBs have appeared in one Super Bowl between them, Favre has been to two and has won one. Favre is the only QB on that list capable of making a mediocre team a contender. McNabb has that kind of ability as well, but he is not yet a legend.

That said, what T.O. said was weak. He went out of his way to tear the team apart. He's brought race into the equation, most notably against Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome, in the past where it doesn't seem to belong. McNabb should have stayed above it. T.O. is just a jerk. When he implied his previous quarterback Jeff Garcia was gay and his game was hurt by it, race was not part of the issue. The issue was a loud mouthed wanker who consistently puts himself above the team.

I understand why McNabb has taken this stand and why he's chosen this moment to do it. McNabb has taken a lot of heat, even being attacked by members of the NAACP over the team's collapse. From the outside, he doesn't seem to deserve the heat. With T.O. now gone, McNabb had to do something to win back the team and the fans and what better time than Super Bowl week with a less than lime light game on the horizon? Great from a PR stand point, not sure it hits the truth though.


S.O.L.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Back on the Streets

The Times-Picayune reported today that FEMA will begin evaluating its rental assistance program and “weed out” those not eligible for funds. Well that’s fine in principal. FEMA needs to account for its funds and is ultimately reporting to the GAO. And unfortunately, post-disaster recovery has a long history of associated fraudulent activity committed by contractors, insurance companies and other third parties, property owners, and government employees alike.

But what struck me in the Times-Picayune article was:

No one knows how many people will lose their trailers or their cash -- FEMA says the figure is small -- but the move is necessary as the agency goes from emergency to more traditional, longer-term programs. That process requires FEMA to weed out some noneligible beneficiaries, such as foreign citizens in the United States illegally or people who were homeless when the storm hit.


Apparently all of last September’s philosophical navel-gazing and talk about confronting difficult issues of race, class and poverty in this society is no longer in vogue. If you were homeless before Katrina, you’ll be homeless again. Yes, there are people who are living in public housing and trailers post-Katrina who were previously homeless. Why in the world is it good to categorically end all rental assistance to this formerly homeless population? For the time being, these past few months have been a horribly traumatic experience for all survivors. But if there is a silver lining, its that for some of the worst off of the worst off, the post-Katrina relocation and federal assistance has allowed some people an opportunity to finally start anew. If you have a HUD sponsored apartment for the first time in months, or years, you’ve now got a chance to seek a job, to try and turn your life around. Sure it may be a small and bare apartment, but its not a cardboard box and it’s a place where a single homeless mother with three kids can get off the streets and sleep in safety. It’s the beginning of the beginning of a second chance. But not anymore. Now you’re basically at risk again to be back on the streets.

To add insult to injury, FEMA is currently operating with a February 13 deadline to end payments to hotels that are hosting evacuees. It’s no longer a secret that a small proportion of individuals currently staying in hotels have felony records likely having to do with drugs. The feds’ ongoing “War on Drugs/War on Crime” has basically ruled out Section 8 housing for individuals with criminal records. In other words you’re not dangerous enough to be in prison, but you’re apparently too dangerous to qualify for public housing. So on February 14 where do you find yourself? Back on the streets. Gosh, THAT really helps people reform themselves and become productive members of society.

Now if the feds were to compensate for these decisions by providing significant funds to all states or municipalities hosting Katrina evacuees to provide needed work training, case management or wrap-around services to help people cope with the transition and get on their feet, it might make the funding cuts somewhat easier to deal with. But has that happened? Nope. Another nail in the coffin. So much for “ a hopeful society comes to the aid of fellow citizens in times of suffering and emergency.”

State of the Union Adress Shocks World!

People and Pundits agreed, Bush wasn't going to say anything surprising last night. Same old same old, Democracy Rulz and Radical Islam is for sissies. Well, about seven minutes in, Bush’s lips parted like the red sea and what came through those frightening gates has Americans abuzz! That's right, George said "terror." Yup, you read right! He said terror with two syllables!

Sad to say, that was pretty much the highlight. Sure he took activist judges to task for destroying Western Civilization by forcing straight men to go fishing in Wyoming and he talked about Iran as if they were porking his daughter, but we expected that. We learned that the only alternative to isolationism is bombing the dog snot out of other countries. He also said we're going to kick the oil habit, but am I really supposed to believe that from the boy who cried AIDS assistance in Africa?

About twenty-five minutes into the broadcast the cameras lingered on a German shepherd who somehow scored tickets. I think he actually got Cindy Sheehan's seat last minute like. Visually, this was the highlight of the evening. After panning again and again across the crowd of congresspersons, I was ready for a change. These people have the fashion sense of a herd of straight lemmings. "So, uhh, Senator Bob, how are you going to stand out in your black suit?" "Well, Senator Dave, I'm going to wear a red tie!" "Hey, Senator Bob, that's a smashing idea, so will I and then I'll stand out too!" Next time, while the president prattles on, just pan across a sea of cute puppies.

Here's an idea, kill two birds with one stone! Combine The State of the Union with The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. Make GW mix in critiques of shih tzus with his Iran rants. It could fill in the space where he didn't talk about Hamas.

Well, GW did announce some new initiatives. Of course, I have absolutely no idea what any of them are. There is The American Competitiveness Initiative, which I think means Americans will have to engage in some sort of competition to get health care. The details were sketchy, but I think the American Gladiators will become a quasi-military organization akin to the Coast Guard and will be armed with tennis ball cannons and stationed in front of pharmacies and clinics. I think there was also The Puppies to Sad People Initiative. This one was about oil dependency. Seriously, I have no idea! He names them and that's it. Has this guy heard of PowerPoint?

And that's my point, my SuperOceanLad Point of Power (TM), why don't we have the State of the Union Power Point Presentation brought to you by ARCO (ARCO is just a place holder 'til we get real sponsorship)? It would be a welcome change over a series of two minutes of careful slow speech to avoid 'ef ups followed by "spontaneous applause."

Anyway, I'm done. I'm going to return to my aquatic lair. Frankly, you dry landers are beginning to bore the neoprene tights off of me.

S.O.L.

Addendum from Jay:Pardon the intrusion. However, wanted to direct folks to a less content-free SOTU from our man Wes.

Always Be Closing!

Human beings can't do shit! I mean, we have some brilliant accomplishments under our belt: The Iliad, moon landings, Beethoven's Ninth, brain surgery, porn.

But we can't arrange the peace to truly enjoy those things. I mean, there's the whole nuclear, destroy the whole planet thing, for one. But beyond that, most everyone lives in fear. If we had peace, we wouldn't have fear. And peace is easy: all you have to do is convince everyone in the world to choose non-violence.

Okay, so it would be a hard sell. But if we had the right salesman...somebody must be able to do it. But who....

How about Gil from The Simpsons?

Old Glory

I just had an idea for America to show its solidarity with Iraq. Let's have American flags where the Iraqi flag takes the place of the stripes. We have 50 states now, not 13. What the hell do we need those stripes for? A little pathetic, that nostalgia. Let it goooooo.

We wouldn't have to change the official flag--that can stay how it is until we really need to add another star to it--but just the kinda fake flags we all have. Bumperstickers, t-shirts, etc. Kind of like the cute puppy flags you see fluttering over front porches in Hampden. But it would be the Iraqi flag superimposed on the American flag.

That would be so sweet. It would be like, "We're with you, brothers and sisters! We love your democracy! I mean, we love you, too, but we reallllllly liiiiiiiike your democracy!" It's quite obvious we all support the troops (well, except for maybe Joel Stein) what with the ribbons and all, but how would you feel if you were an Iraqi and shit's blowing to pieces all around you and you see a picture of an American bumper with a yellow ribbon on it. "He-lloooh-ohh? What about me!?"

Hell, I think we should do it for every new democracy. "We're totally with you, Hamas!"

But this isn't going to get across on a ribbon, I don't think. We need a new symbol. That way we could distinguish it from the ribbon for people who only support the troops or the democracy recipients, but not both. Hmm, what could we use for a symbol?

Here's something off the top of my head: