Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Gather Ye Values While Ye May

"Pepsi Cola hits the spot, 
12 full ounces, that's a lot,
Twice as much for a nickel, too,
Pepsi Cola is the drink for you."

Catchy jingle that played from the 1930s to 1950. I found it on You Tube. Can you believe a bottle of Pepsi cost 5 cents? Can you believe there was a time you could buy anything for 5 cents? 

I'm not sure if you can today. In fact, I don't think I remember the last time a saw a nickel. Dimes and quarters and pennies seem to make up the contents of my change  purse.

Having looked up the former price of the 12 oz. of  Pepsi I buy today and pay about 35 cents for in a 12-pack, I thought I would check out what gas cost the same year. Google says 18 cents a gallon!

Back when Pepsi was five cents for 12 ounces, a gallon (128 ounces) of gasoline cost a little more than three bottles of soda.

I filled up the gas tank today. Each  gallon cost $3.40.

I'm as horrified and a little scared as the rest of the world's non-millionaires are. But even when it was cheap, why did we ever think a gallon of colored water was worth more than a gallon of gasoline?


Monday, July 25, 2011

Verbal Tschotskes

I remember back to the first Bush presidency when the word "demagogue" came into vogue. A newsman was interviewing Barbara Bush and she was criticizing the demagogues. "What is a demagogue," asked the reporter. Babs looked non-plussed   and then, honestly, said, "Well, I don't know." Maybe, for effective communication,  we should go back to grunts. 

Kicking the can down the road
 Just running up the credit card
Holding a gun to our heads
Don't tax the job creators
Making cuts on the backs of the poor
Time to take our government back
Global warming alarmists
Short term political gain
Cut all the waste and fraud in the government programs
My way or the highway
The government is broken
Put God back in the schools
Gay bashing
Play the race card
From day one
I don't answer hypotheticals
Homosexuality is a lifestyle
The lame stream media
We have to get ourselves on a tax trajectory
Get the government out of our lives
The American people have spoken
The government is broken
Guns don't kill people, etc., etc.
Waiting for the other shoe to drop
Death panels
Pray away the gay
Pro abortion
Zero tolerance
Life begins at conception.
Think outside the box
Homeland security
Writing checks our grandchildren can't cash
Spending our children's inheritance
Fair and balanced
Not equivalent
Mission accomplished
What would Jesus do?


Friday, July 22, 2011

He's Got his Panties in a Twist

Perhaps I missed something in a story I just read on Huffington Post where "my" (SIGH) governor, Bob  McDonnell, is running around like a goose in a windstorm because Virginia's credit rating is going to be in the tank.

I recall he stated some months back that he didn't see any point in raising the debt ceiling. A kind of "let 'em default" attitude which seems to have changed now that it is apparent Virginia will suffer.

McDonnell (or is it McConnell?....I can't ever remember anything about him except his cute and tidy little pompadour) a proud grad of Falwell's Liberty U. That should tell you all you need to know about his qualifications for anything.

He  and his AG,  Cuccinelli (who calls himself "Cooch") - are the Mutt and Jeff of Virginia politics. Both have attempted to carve out a national image, but they are dull blades, indeed.

As I was falling asleep last night, some commentator was remarking about how the GOP thought they had a winner with McDonnell and gave him the honor of presenting the Republican response after Obama's State of the Union address. 

He and the State Assembly House were all gussied up....with a liberal sprinkling of "types" know, black, brown, Oriental, young, old, civilian and military, male, female. It looked like a stage set for a propaganda commercial. Oh, right. That's what it was. 

Unfortunately for him, the boost didn't result in a demand for his brand . He is a drab little man with nothing to say.

If he hasn't distinguished himself, his attorney general has. "Cooch" is recognized far and wide as a horse's ass. He has fought "Obamacare" and climate change and he is anti-gay and anti anything that smacks of progress or humanity. 

But he outdid himself by trying to cover up the left breast of the Roman goddess who is on the Virginia state seal.

Where do these people come from? Do they spring whole from the hole in Zeus's head? 


Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Hound or the Fox or the Skunk?

Smug and unctuous. Those are Eric Cantor's two expressions.

I first thought he simply was Boehner's dogsbody since I never saw a photograph of the orangeman without this smarmy little terrier glued to his hip. But it is apparent that he is not supporting  his leader, he is snapping up scraps from the table.....smiling all the while.

This whole debt ceiling thing is starting to appear more like a peeling  plaster ceiling piling on the panicky GOP. However, Cantor's plastic expression reveals that one way or another he will be top dog.

Capitalizing on Boehner's unrepublican reasonableness, Cantor looks like he is going to succeed in wresting the low ground from the party and come out of this briar patch looking like Br'er Rabbit and leaving the Speaker looking like Bugs Bunny.

In the larger scheme of things, maybe his ambition is irrelevant. And maybe Boehner will be able to survive just by refusing to engage in a peeing contest with a skunk.  


Sunday, July 10, 2011

You Live and Then You Don't

Death is life's greatest mystery.

Check that! Life is life's greatest mystery. The end of it is just another part of it.

I'm always a little bemused, and sometimes amused, by the myriad ways people react to it. It's certainly not an event that is generally welcomed but, on the other hand, it's hardly surprising except, sometimes, when the timing and the circumstances are awful.

I was still awake Friday night when Betty Ford's demise was announced. Andrea Mitchell appeared on air looking devastated and haggard and revealed the "sad" news.

Holy Nellie, Andrea....she was 93 years old! and I am sure you haven't been spending so much time in her company that her absence has left a hole  in your life. 

Maybe it's a function of my great age that I find her departure evokes just a little nostalgia for the '70s (ugh!) and the acknowledgement that she made a number of useful contributions to society, but I found it hardly devastating news. 

However, maybe that's what Andrea is paid to do. Be devastated on cue. Not much of a leap since she and her husband almost always look mournful.

One reaction to death  I found less amusing and more revolting was Rush Limbo's statement that liberals wouldn't have cared about Caylee's fate if she had still been in the womb. Of course not, you dumb ass. She wouldn't have been a person.  She wouldn't have known what it was to laugh and cry and do. People wouldn't have seen her and held her and loved her. Absolutely no loss to her or anyone else.

When I started life as a journalist I was given the job of editing the birth and death announcements for the paper. After a few months of total boredom, I asked my editor if we couldn't change the hed on it to Arrivals and Departures. 

I guess my views haven't changed that much.


Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Change is Enough to Gag a Maggot

Back in my salad days, I dated a young man who was an officer of a small Long Island bank. We often went to cocktail parties at the Garden City Hotel given by the Young Republicans - a group of affluent college men and young executives, in the main, who probably were destined for great things.

The parties and the pursuant conversations were convivial and ecumenical in nature. It was a happy and carefree time of my life since I was not then possessed of a point of view that seemed very different from that of my companions.

Now, recognizing that I have become a flaming liberal, I wonder that I ever had a sense of camaraderie with the people with whom we frequently dined and shared pleasant evenings.

This morning, thanks to David Brooks, I have discovered why I have become so hostile to Conservatives over the past few decades. It has finally dawned on me that I have not become anything different from what I was - an essentially benignly liberal thinker attracted to intellectual pursuits - and happy to live and let live.

What has changed is the Republican party. Its members are not normal. 

Of course! And here I thought I had become "difficult."