Welcome to Buster's Blog

Irregular commentary on whatever's on my mind -- politics, sports, current events, and life in general. After twenty years of writing business and community newsletters, fifteen years of fantasy baseball newsletters, and two years of email "columns", this is, I suppose, the inevitable result: the awful conceit that someone might actually care to read what I have to say. Posts may be added often, rarely, or never again. As always, my mood and motivation are unpredictable.

Buster Gammons

Monday, June 29, 2015

Still "Liking" and "Sharing" Without Thinking

Facebook is an online landfill, and sadly, some of the garbage may be dumped by your friends.

A couple days ago, a friend posted a meme on his FB page.  It was the image of a hard-hat worker covered in dirt, standing by a manhole.  The text offered thanks to Florida, Kentucky and Missouri (a redneck trifecta) for requiring drug tests for welfare recipients, and asked why it's "OK to drug-test people who work for their money, but not OK for those who don't?  If you can afford to buy drugs and extra illegal things (wha'?), then you can afford to buy your own groceries."

The post ended with the typical FB command to "re-post if you agree."  And my friend did exactly that, adding the screaming comment, "TOTALLY AGREE!!"

This is the zombie lie Reagan told 35 years ago with his "Welfare queen" story, and too many people still believe it -- that public assistance provides a luxurious existence and poor people are just running a con on society that costs the rest of us a ton.

Those who believe that lie are so freaked out about it that they insist on humiliating the poor and punishing them for their poorness.  In their minds, if you accept public assistance you better not have any money at all.  You better not have any "extras" -- no phone, no car, no movies, no new shirt, no lobster, and, god forbid, no drugs or alcohol.  Bread and water only, and get a job, ya bum!

Dear friend, if you and I indulge in a little beer and a little smoke, we've earned it, we're entitled.  But you think if the poor person does, he's scamming, he's not entitled.  The poor man must suffer sincerely and soberly.  No laughing allowed.  And if the poor man tests positive for some drug or alcohol, you'd like to sentence him to starvation.

When you like and share and re-post to the whole wide world on Facebook, you might want to consider where the post came from in the first place, because you are associating yourself with that source.  The meme my friend re-posted came from one Lars Larson.  No, I never heard of him either, but after a quick search I now know that Lars Larson is a far-right, ultra-conservative radio talk-show host (Another one!  Boring!) from Oregon.  On his home page, he poses pompously with a cigar, ala Rush Limbaugh, and urges us to "remember the Benghazi 4."  Benghazi!!  Larson is a paranoid, conspiracy-theory nutcase, in the style of that spectacular asshole, Alex Jones.  I bet this is all news to my friend.  Is Lars Larson really your kinda guy?

You might also want to consider the content of the post and decide if it's a valid point or just a reactionary bumper-sticker viewpoint.  You can't buy drugs or alcohol with a government SNAP/EBT card (food stamps), so they can't use "our" money for it.  There is no evidence of widespread substance abuse among those receiving food assistance benefits.  It's a favorite conservative myth, like voter fraud.  Drug-testing the poor accomplishes exactly what, then?  It's a punishment in search of a problem.

For the record, a little quick research shows that the national average EBT benefit is $133 per month.  That's $4.43 per day.  Hoo-boy, that's livin' large, isn't it?  No, it isn't.  And the idea that the cost of providing subsistence care for the poor is horribly expensive is a crock.  The average American taxpayer pays $36 a year to fund the SNAP, SCHIP (school lunch) and WIC (food for women, infants and children) programs.  That's $3 a month, ten cents a day.  If you get angry over that pittance to help the least fortunate among us, you're hard enough to be a real Republican.  And if you're still worried about drug users on the dole, let's say that ten percent of all EBT recipients are hopeless drug addicts.  Those drugged-out losers cost you a penny a day, $3.65 a year.  BFD!  Instead of making these poor folks jump through hoops, instead of threatening to cut off their food, how about trying to help them?    

In contrast, the average American family pays $2436 per year in business subsidies and grants, corporate tax incentives, and other state and local business incentives.  Who's the real Welfare queen?

I hope my post-happy, research-challenged dear friend might dig a little deeper in the future.

As rehabilitation, I sentence him to click the links and read these three posts:




I also sentence him to enter "Facebook" in the Buster's Blog search window and read everything that pops up.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Knock-Knock! Who's There?

It's Adam & Eve AND Adam & Steve!

It's been a rough couple days for conservatives.

Today, the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage.  Like the earlier Obamacare decision, their ruling didn't really surprise too many people, except for all the righties living under the Fox Dome.  Antonin Scalia went apoplectic, spitting and stammering incoherently about "this f***ing Court."  (If it's so bad, he should quit.)  All the GOP presidential candidates have been placed on suicide watch.  Huckabee and Santorum had to be restrained with strait-jackets.

"Aaagh!  My gay nightmare
is becoming reality!"

The wheels of progress often turn slowly, but eventually they turn.  It's nice to be here when it happens.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Something To Be Thankful For

(Just for fun!  Swiped from a friend's FB page.  Can't fight Mean Mr. Gravity!)

With Us, Against Us

With Us:

SCOTUS again affirms Obamacare.  Scalia freaks out.  GOP has no plan, no answer.  "Hey, hey! What do say? ACA is here to stay!"

Our local flag merchant does an abrupt and tearful about-face after a social media backlash and decides to stop selling Confederate battle flags.  "Oh, boo-hoo, we're so sorry we were offensive while profiting from racism."

Judge blocks unconstitutional new Kansas law banning all abortions after just 12 weeks of pregnancy.  Gov. Brownback is not having a good year.  Thanks to him, Kansas is broke and stupid.

Against us:

All 13 GOP presidential candidates still oppose Obamacare, despite SCOTUS ruling.  RNC Chairman Obergruppenfuhrer Reince Priebus says that's why we need the final solution -- a Republican president who will ruthlessly repeal it, remove it, and then do what . . . ???  (They have no fucking idea.)

Ohio Senate OK's an unconstitutional ban on all abortions after just 20 weeks of pregnancy.  Straight gerrymandered party-line vote.  Now on to the Ohio House.  Please call or write your Rep. to oppose this hateful, punitive, and medically unsound bill.  If it passes the House, will Gov. Kasich have the nuts and guts to veto it?

Scott Walker signs law to eliminate Wisconsin's 48-hour waiting period for gun purchases.  "Not because it's a good idea, not because I really hunt deer, but because the NRA told me to, and I do what I'm told."

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

"We're Not Racist Morons, We're History Buffs!"

As southern states like South Carolina, Alabama, Virginia and Tennessee call for the removal of the Confederate flag from state property, and numerous retailers like Amazon, eBay, Sears, WalMart and Target pull all Confederate flag merchandise ("Say, is that a real rebel flag or just a Sears rebel flag?"), we have a curious holdout here in Columbus.  A small, family-owned flag store says it will continue to offer Confederate battle flags for sale to the public.

This is of special interest to me because the store's owner is a neighbor of mine.  On the plus side, she has generously donated American flags displayed at the entrances to our subdivision.  On the other side, she says she'll keep selling the Stars and Bars because "we've always categorized it as an historic flag."

Funny -- that's what I've always categorized as wrong!  And stupid!  The Confederate flag was the home jersey for Team Slavery.  Yeah, it's history, but it's very bad history.  We remember it, and acknowledge it with shame and regret.  It's just not cool to try to profit from from it.

Does my neighbor sell Nazi flags?  Khmer Rouge flags?  Historic, but c'mon!  No way.  She should stop selling Confederate flags.  Yesterday.

Medicare For All . . . One Of These Days

Most readers know I'm a big fan of Obamacare.  Any day now, the Supreme Court will rule in the matter of King v. Burwell, an absurd lawsuit which claims that premium subsidies are allowable only in the handful of states with state-run insurance exchanges, not in those with federal exchanges.  (You can refresh your memory by clicking the link to Buster's "Four Little Words" post of earlier this year.)


I fully expect SCOTUS to find against the plaintiff and preserve Obamacare intact.  It's been the law of the land for five years and has helped tens of millions of people already, including your humble correspondent.  But what do I know?

Hard-ass conservatards hate Obamacare because it dares to tweak our existing profit-driven system.  It's a tiny tweak, but a tweak nonetheless.  The righties fear that Obamacare is just the first step toward a government-run, single-payer, universal health care system . . . a public option, like Medicare.

My God, let's hope so!  Here's Robert Reich:

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Great Comment On "The Business Of Government"

A faithful reader has sent a pertinent comment on the previous "Business of Government" post.  Well said, faithful reader.  Thank you!

There are no purely Capitalist or Socialist societies in this world.  The most efficient economies seek to have a blend where business delivers more narrowly defined goods and services to individuals and profit is the driving force. 

But, some things, mainly services (police, fire, highways, sanitation, education, etc.), do not lend themselves well to any business models.  These services are necessary in every community and intended to serve the needs of the entire community rather than individuals.  These services do not lend themselves well to any business model where profit is the driving force. 

This is where government fills the gap.  Government takes on services that do not work well under a business model.  Sure, it's inefficient.  But public"CEO's " (read: Mayor, Superintendent, City Council, Board of Education) regularly answer to the public.  No business could ever consider utilizing "a business model" where the public (the customers) decide what they are going to pay and what kind of services they are going to receive.


Monday, June 22, 2015

The Business Of Government Is Not Business

Talking with a friend the other night, and he said, "Government should be run like a business.  We need a business person to run the country."  And didn't I agree?

(First, I had to establish that he was not suggesting that Donald Trump be president.  No, he was not a fan of the bragadocious blowhard.  Good!)

But based on the real, underlying meaning of such statements, no, I don't agree, not really.

Business principles come into play at any level of government, and should -- they're not mutually exclusive.  But they're not the same thing either.  Business and government exist in different realms and perform different functions.  Business sells products and services at a profit and accumulates capital and equity.  Government sets public policy for a society, and makes decisions and laws toward that end.

If you're looking for a hard-charging CEO-type to take charge, kick ass, break the log-jam and get shit done, forget it.  You're seeking a king or a dictator, and our system of government simply doesn't permit it.

That leaves two other interpretations of government should be like business.

1.  You believe government -- any government -- is, by definition, always too big, too inefficient, too wasteful.  This is the popular pablum famously dished out by Reagan, lapped up by lamebrains and taken to new extremes by the Norquistian Tea Baggers who want to shrink it, slash it, cut it, privatize it, drown it in a bathtub, etc.

2.  You feel that government isn't handing out enough goodies to business.  Corporate America must have more tax cuts and subsidies, and fewer rules and regulations in order to survive.  In this theory, the business of government is business.  Government's role is to ensure business profits and make things as easy as possible for business.  Welfare, no.  Corporate welfare, yes!

Our government is big and sometimes inefficient, but hey, it's a big country.  I can tolerate a little waste in exchange for all the things our tax dollars provide for all of us, especially for the least fortunate among us.

And business does not need more "help" from government.  Business likes it, wants it, will take it, but does not need it.  The endless calls for "business friendly" this-and-that are ransom notes.  Business needs to take responsibility for its own success and quit whining about the goddam gummint.  If your business really can't hack it without a 0% tax rate and slave wages, it's not the government's fault.

Not Never, Just 150 Years Late

Just heard the news -- the State of South Carolina has just decided to remove the Confederate battle flag from its statehouse.  (Or more accurately, the Governor says it should come down, and wants the legislature to "debate" it and agree with her to take it down, and soon.  I assume it will happen.)

Gutsy move, Palmetto bugs!  What courage!  Lost the Civil War, lost the slave economy, lost the Jim Crow segregation wars, and lost the respect of all intelligent people, but for 15 long decades, you somehow just couldn't lose that hateful, divisive banner.  You kept telling yourselves it was a symbol of southern pride and heritage, of states' rights.  Sure it was.

Pretty damn sad it took a murderous act of racial terrorism to finally wake up the bozos of official South Carolina, after a mere 150 year slumber.

The Confederate flag is a symbol of racism and intimidation embraced only by idiot losers.  Good riddance, South Carolina.

Mississippi, it's your turn.  

Friday, June 19, 2015

NRA's Completely Predictable Position

The NRA has wasted no time in blaming the victim.

"Dedicated" NRA board member Charles Cotton has declared that the murdered pastor and state senator Clementa Pinckney essentially caused his own death and the death of the eight others.

It's hard to imagine a more incorrect, inappropriate and insensitive response.

But the NRA never disappoints.  The depths to which they willingly sink are bottomless, unfathomable.

No Sanctuary

It has happened again, and words fail.

A young racist white man walked into a black church in Charleston, SC -- the Emanuel AME -- and slaughtered nine people.  Shot them to death.  He methodically reloaded his handgun as necessary.  It was a clear hate crime.  His motive was racial terrorism.  And this little fuck seems proud of it.

Where did he get the gun?  His father gave it to him for his birthday.  (Nice "gift", dad, you asshole.)  And where did the shooter get his white supremacist beliefs?  Probably another gift from dad.

Sad and angry, President Barack Obama said this:

"Once again, someone who wanted to inflict harm had no trouble getting his hands on a gun."

"At some point, we have to reckon with the fact that this typre of mass violence does not happen in other advanced advanced countries . . . with this kind of frequency."

"It is in our power to do something about it." 

Will we?  Not if the right wing keeps getting its way.

Politician Bobby Jindal said the President's comments were political and "completely shameful."  Wrong!  Obama was completely truthful and you are the completely shameful political wanker.

Some idiot on Fox News suggested the outcome would have been different if the church members were carrying guns.  Oh yes, the solution is always more guns!  Wrong!  We've tried that, done that, are still doing it.  America has more guns per capita than any other nation in the world, by far.  The result?  We average 32,000 gun deaths per year.  Our rate of gun homicide is 20 times higher than the combined rates of 22 other high-income, developed countries.

More guns = more gun violence, and less public safety.  Period.

Our problem -- our shame -- is that far too many of our conservative politicians are paralyzed by fear and greed.  They won't even pass a federal law requiring background checks.  Yes, I'm talking about you, Sen. Robbie Portman, and all the other spineless worms just like you.  You've sold your pathetic souls to the NRA.

Time after time, our hearts are torn apart by one gun-related tragedy after another.  And the greater tragedy is, as Jon Stewart said last night, "we're not gonna do jack-shit."

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Trump? LOL!!!!!

The Donald?  For president?

OMFG! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ho ho ho ho ho ho ho hee hee hee hee hee hee hee haw haw haw haw haw haw -- snork! -- ha ha ha ha ha ha!  Oh ho ho!  Oh man, I think I just peed in my pants a little!  Trump!  Oh, Jesus!  Nice fucking hair!  Hilarious!   "I'm so rich!"  "You're fired!"  "I'm on an escalator, bitch!" 

The GOP is like that little car at the circus -- open the door and the clowns come pouring out.

The Science Pope (Well, Mostly)

I'm not religious, but this guy Francis is about the coolest, smartest Pope you can imagine.  He's so good, he pisses off a lot of Catholics, including some GOP presidential wanna-be's.

Pope Francis has stated unequivocally that climate change is man-made, and in tomorrow's Papal Encyclical, he will say it again and challenge world leaders to do something about it -- like now!  Unfortunately, the Pope will not acknowledge the role of over-population in climate change (and in virtually all the planet's problems).  That's very Catholic of you, Frankie, but please do a bit more research on this, OK?

Even so, the Pope has blinded some dim-witted Republican Catholics with science!

First, Rick Santorum said that the Pope should "leave science to the scientists."   Pope Francis has a chemistry degree.  Santorum has a degree in dumbfuckery.  Icky Ricky can say whatever he likes, because no one is ever listening to him.

Joke! 2016
Then Prince John Ellis Bush, who has a bit more wheelbase than Santorum, thought he'd try to dis the Pope too.  Quoth the Jebster, "I don't get my economic policy from my pope.  I'd like to see what he says [about] climate change and how that relates to broader, deeper issues."

Jeb's clear implication is that economic concerns are always more important -- broader and deeper -- than those petty little environmental concerns.

Jeb is B.S., a bad joke.

Enough willful ignorance.  Go science!  Go Frankie!  School those slow learners!  Buster hears that in tomorrow's little chat, the Pope will endorse the Tyson-Nye 2016 ticket.

Relentless Spin

American Big Oil & Gas has been engaged in a public relations blitz for the past few years.  The frequency of the self-congratulatory ads seems to have picked up lately.  Evidently, the industry believes the damage of big pollution can be obscured with big advertising buys.

Koch cowboys ride into the heartland's sunset
Koch Industries is running their "We Are Koch" campaign.  They want us to know they were "born in the heartland,"  "proudly built on American values," and "dedicated to improving people's lives."  Empty words and phrases.  Ten years ago, nobody ever heard of the Koch brothers.  Now they try to cover their filthy, oily tracks with TV ads.  

Blah-blah-blah from BP

BP is still sucking up to the American public, five years after their disastrous Deepwater Horizon oil spill.  They continue to run ad after ad telling us about the "continuing commitment to the Gulf Coast," and how much they've learned, and how much money they've spent.  Behind the scenes, BP is engaged in a legal fight to reduce it's fines from $13.7 billion to 2.3 billion.  Poor BP.

It's un-American to be #2
The ubiquitous woman-in-black spokesperson for the American Petroleum Institute is constantly reminding us that the U.S. is now "the world's #1 producer of natural gas" and "could soon be #1 in oil, too."    (They ought to give her a big foam finger to wave.)  She's says it means "millions of new jobs" thanks to "safe, proven hydraulic fracturing technology."  Her jobs number is grossly overstated, the jobs are temporary, and fracking is neither safe nor proven.

"We leased our land to the frackers for a big chunk of
change.  The trees are still green and our dog is still
alive.  Fracking must be safe, right?"

Worst of all may be the treacly, gag-inducing spots from EnergyFromShale.org.  Their TV spots feature "real" people who are enjoying the fracking boom.  These citizens say things like, "We all know fracking will help the community, but there has to be a balance."  (A balance?  Between environmental protection and quick-buck profiteering?)  "I learned that we've been fracking safely for 65 years."  (That's a stretch -- Halliburton's first frack wells in 1949 were small, shallow, and few.  Today's operations are far different.)  "That really got the conversation flowing."  (There's no conversation.  There's a debate, a disagreement, an argument, a fight.)

While the oil and gas industry feeds happy horseshit to the unthinking masses, states like Oklahoma, Ohio and others have concluded that fracking definitely causes earthquakes.  New York has enacted an outright ban on fracking.  Ohio Gov. Kasich is trying to convince his own R-dominated legislature to increase the state's "severance tax" on drillers from one of the very lowest in the nation to something a bit more appropriate.  But his lawmakers are so well-greased by the industry they probably won't do it.  Nationally, the U.S. Dept. of Interior issued rules for fracking on federal land (mind-boggling it's allowed to begin with):  Frackers must have uniform construction standards, reveal the many chemicals they use, and guarantee safe disposal (what's that?) of their contaminated waste "water."  The oil & gas industry reacted to these rules with a lawsuit.  It figures.

They hide the truth and sue to preserve the illusion.  When will we ever learn?

Monday, June 15, 2015

We've Seen This Movie Before

And it sucked.

It just wouldn't be summer without some lame-o remake trying to squeeze the last bit of life out of some tired old genre.  No, I'm not referring to Jurassic World, although that's a good example.

I'm talking about "Jeb 2016!"  
Bush: The Sequel to the Sequel.  
Bush: The Day After the Next Day.  
Bush Part Three: The Bushiest.  
Bush Cubed.  

Just don't say Bush.  It's like Voldemort: The Campaign That Dare Not Speak Its Own Name.  Even Jurassic World pays homage to its Jurassic Park forebears.  But John Ellis Bush would like you to forget his surname.  The legacy has become a bit embarrassing for him.  "Pay no attention to those Bushes behind that curtain.  41?  43?  Never heard of 'em.  I'm just Jeb from Florida, and I wanna be 45, OK?  And remember, I'm really conservative.  Really."  

Jeb is from Florida like I am from Mongolia.

Grandson of Prescott, son of H.W., brother of Dubya, Jeb Bush was born to a life of privilege, influence and connections. He's American royalty, an enormous pile of cash in a nicely tailored suit.  
He symbolizes what old money can do, and who they can do it to.  (And in case you were going to bring it up, the Clintons are in no way equivalent.  Not even close.  Puh-leeze!)    

Bush III would be like Jurassic World -- a hugely expensive and stale remake, historically inaccurate, and proof that we are suckers for formula.  We'd be a bunch of damn fools if we let another Bush buy the White House. 


Thursday, June 11, 2015

The Best Thing About Our New Columbus Business

They made it official today.  The Scotland-based craft brewery, BrewDog, will locate its U.S.headquarters here in Columbus.  That means a brewing plant, offices, and a taproom with a restaurant.  It means some jobs and local tax revenue.  It's all good stuff for us here in central Ohio.

But none of that is the best part.  The best part is that BrewDog has a real sense of humor, and it brews some ultra-limited quantity, ultra-high ABV products that we Yanks could never previously even come close enough to sniff without an American site.  And now we'll have one, and it'll be right in our back yard.

(Buster has blogged about BrewDog in the distant past.  Long-term faithful readers may remember, but probably not.  Click the links below for instant recall.  I can't wait to try a Tactical Nuclear Penguin.)



Monday, June 8, 2015

Jawhnny The Wonder Guv Floats The Flat-Tax Trial Balloon

They just can't help themselves.

Republicans have always hated two things:  Income taxes, and the fact that income taxes have always been "progressive", i.e. higher incomes pay higher rates.  They howl that the system is impossibly complex and unfair, especially to such patriotic job-creators as themselves.

Then they always hold up flat income tax rate as a perfect model of fairness.  Flat-tax, of course, means everyone pays the same rate, regardless of income or assets.  Flat-tax is their Holy Grail.  They seek it with varying degrees of ardor, but they seek it still.

I read with some amusement that Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who's been AWOL while testing the GOP primary waters in Iowa and New Hampshire, has trotted out the old flat-tax concept.  Not a new idea, not a good one, and not a surprise, given that Jawhnny the Wonder Guv has long dreamed of the total elimination of the Ohio state income tax.

Remember this:  Whenever right-wing politicians start talking about tax reform, tax code simplification, flat tax rates, lower tax rates, and more fairness, it always sounds good, but it's not good -- it's complete bullshit.  If the right must have taxes, they want regressive taxation.  Their "reform" means bigger breaks and more advantages to those at the highest income levels.  It means they pay less, a lot less, and that's all that matters.  They don't care about who has to pay more to make up the shortfall.  The Norquistians and Tea Baggers don't even want to try to make it up.

Republicans think you're stupid.  (Wait -- You like movies based on toys and comic books?  Maybe you are stupid.)

There is one thing about our current income tax system that's unfair:  It's not that the gajillionaires and corporations have to pay so much, it's that they don't pay nearly enough.

Map Of Ohio


Saturday, June 6, 2015

Protecting Us From Our Own Perversions

State Sen. Jim Hughes (R-Dublin) is shocked -- shocked! -- that bestiality is not illegal in Ohio.  He calls the practice "sick, perverse, and deviant.  We should not allow it."

Consequently, Hughes is trying to outlaw it via a tack-on amendment to the state's budget.  Of course, boning a sheep has absolutely no budget implications, but, you know, what the hell.

Public servant Hughes has a history of trying to legislate morality and criminalize certain behaviors he personally finds disgusting.  He was once shocked -- shocked! -- to learn that drinking urine was legal in Ohio.  (Click the link.)


It's not that I condone piss-drinking or sex with farm animals.  I just happen to believe that trying to legislate against it is both fruitless and funny.


Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Dispatch Headline Writers: "We Is Smart, Isn't Us?"

The Columbus Dispatch is well-known for its knee-jerk conservative editorial policy, it's frequently wrinkled and torn pages, blurry photos, and content so pathetically thin the daily editions are almost weightless -- the paper has so little mass the paperboy can't even throw it.

And now the local rag features grammatically-challenged headlines, such as today's example:

"How it all come together for LeBron and the Cavs."

Huh?  If I'm not mistaken, it should be either "How it all comes together . . . " or "How it all came together . . . "

The Dispatch sucks.  Yes it do.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Lindsey Graham. Really?

Normally, he's just a semi-sensate flailing appendage attached to Sen. John McCain.  But now Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) believes himself to be presidential material.  He may be the only one.

The fear-mongering chicken-hawk announced his candidacy by claiming that he's a foreign policy expert and saying that "radical Islam is trying to kill us" and "the world is falling apart."  He vowed to send 10,000 troops back into Iraq and wants to scuttle any deal with Iran.  He said if you don't like it, he'll "send a drone and kill you."

And Graham is the guy some hard-ass South Carolina Tea Baggers thought was a soft, wimpy RINO.  I guess he's gonna show them.  Yeah.

That shit may play in Aiken, SC, but not too many other places.  Lindsey Graham has comedic value, a history of belligerent craziness, and no chance of becoming president.

We're now up to 9 official GOP candidates.  Soon to be 15, 16, 19, or more.  Good luck with that.

New Mexico's One-Party System?

Two of three vote GOP.
The state of New Mexico has an old law still on their books which gives the right to vote to all adult residents "except idiots and insane persons."

Does this eliminate most Republican voters in The Land of Enchantment?

That would be rather enchanting.

Everything Old Is New Again

Saw these things last weekend for the first time, used by a couple teenagers at our neighborhood pool.  They are the reincarnation of the old Polaroid instant cameras, updated by Fuji in pretty pastel colors.  Apparently, they're all the rage, especially for teenage girls.

Suddenly, all those smart phones that take really great photos are passe.  What's hot is technology from 1948.  It produces -- OMG!! -- an actual physical image you can hold in your hand.  Frame it, sign it, give it to others, etc.  What a concept!

The camera spits out photos on thick paper which take about 60 seconds to develop.  (No, you don't have to shake it.)  The color is sort of washed out.  The image sharpness is less-than-sharp.  There is no digital memory, no online capability.  While digital photographs are truly instant and essentially free, the Fuji Instax-Mini costs $70, and a film pack of 20 exposures is $17.  Today's teenagers got bucks!

And now they crave old-school photos.  There may yet be hope for books and newspapers.