Friday, July 29, 2005

Things To Do . . .

Things To Do Before John Roberts Is Appointed To The Supreme Court:

1. Get that abortion you've always wanted.

2. Drink a nice clean glass of water.

3. Cash your social security check.

4. See a doctor of your own choosing.

5. Spend quality time with your draft age child/grandchild.

6. Visit a foreign country.

7. Get that gas mask you've been putting off buying.

8. Hoard gasoline.

10. Borrow books from library before they're banned - Constitutional law books, Catcher in the Rye, Harry Potter, Tropic of Cancer, etc.

11. If you have an idea for an art piece involving a crucifix - do it now.

12. Come out - then go back in - HURRY!

13. Jam in all the Alzheimer's stem cell research you can.

14. Stay out late before the curfews start.

16. Go see Bruce Springsteen before he has his "accident".

17. Go see Mount Rushmore before the Reagan addition.

18. Use the phrase - "you can't do that - this is America".

19. If you're white - marry a black person, if you're black - marry a white person.

21. Take a walk in Yosemite, without being hit by a snowmobile or a base-jumper.

22. Enroll your kid in an accelerated art or music class.

23. Start your school day without a prayer.

24. Pass on the secrets of evolution to future generations.

26. Learn French.

28. Attend a commitment ceremony with your gay friends.

29. Take a factory tour anywhere in the US.

30. Try to take photographs of animals on the endangered species list.

31. Visit Florida before the polar ice caps melt.

32. Visit Nevada before it becomes radioactive.

33. Visit Alaska before "The Big Spill".

34. Visit Massachusetts while it is still a State.

Dick Mac Recommends:

George Orwell

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Joke - McQuillan walked into a bar

McQuillan walked into a bar and ordered martini after martini, each time removing the olives and placing them in a jar.

Hours later, when the jar was filled with olives and all the drinks consumed, he started to leave.

"S'cuse me", said a customer, who was puzzled over what McQuillan had done, "what was that all about?"

"Nothin'," said McQuillan, "my wife just sent me out for a jar of olives!"

Dick Mac Recommends:

The Priest, the Pastor, and the Rabbi . . .
Alan Mandelberg

Recent posts
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See archives at right for earlier posts

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Tide Laundry Detergent

Dear Proctor & Gamble:

I'm writing to say what an excellent product you have with Tide Laundry Detergent! I've used it all through my married life, as my Mom always told me it was the best. Now though I am in my fifties, I find it even better!

In fact, about a month ago, I spilled some red wine on a new white blouse. My inconsiderate and uncaring husband started to berate me about how clumsy I was, and generally started becoming a pain in the neck. One thing led to another and somehow I ended up with a lot of his blood on my white blouse. I tried to get the stain out using a bargain detergent, but it just wouldn't come out.

During a quick trip to the supermarket I purchased a bottle of Liquid Tide with Bleach Alternative, and to my surprise and satisfaction, all of the stains came out! In fact, the stains came out so well the detectives came by yesterday and told me that the DNA tests on my blouse were negative. Then my attorney called and said that I would no longer be considered a suspect in the disappearance of my husband.

What a relief! Going through menopause is bad enough without being a murder suspect! I thank you, once again, for having such a great product.

Well, gotta' go. I have to write a letter to the Hefty bag people.

Very truly yours,
A very happy housewife

Thanks to Elaine for sending this along!

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Products of Tomorrow

Lewis Blackwell

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Oscar Wilde said:

Morality, like art, means drawing a line someplace.

Oscar Wilde - Irish dramatist, novelist, & poet (1854 - 1900)

(Nicked from

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The Picture of Dorian Gray
Oscar Wilde

Monday, July 25, 2005

You Can Shoot The Bitch, Just Don't Have Sex with Her

I am fascinated by America's fascination with sex, or is it America's fascination with being against sex.

The newest installment in the "America Hates Sex" reality series involves "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas," a video game.

This series of video games has become more and more violent as new versions have been released. Players are required to kill law enforcement officials, steal cars, slaughter families and women. It is one of the most violent games available to children.

I do think it's sort of odd that Americans, even suburban isolationists pretending to be so moral about everything, consider Grand Theft Auto acceptable entertainment.

America is the perfect home for consumer-level violence: guns from K-Mart, expensive video game consoles, and murderous game cartridges for angry white people who never interact with each other. America is the perfect place for virtual reality: a magic place where you can slaughter a young family and take their car to get to the next level.

What freaks me out, is that the people who think it's OK to sell children games of murder and theft are shocked and appalled that the same video game includes a sex scene!

It's OK for the game to be sold to children as long as they are only exposed to killing; but, if they are going to be exposed to sex then it has to be removed from the shelves.

Personally, I was exposed to a lot of violence and sex on the streets of Roxbury, Massachusetts, in the 1960s. I saw some freaky stuff as a kid. My recollection is this: I was more freaked-out by seeing young men stabbed and beaten than I was by the sight of a penis or a vagina. Why are people so shocked and appalled about sex and not violence?

The movement of the shocked and appalled is led by the current reigning queen of suburbia and all that is suburban: Senator Hillary "What the Fuck do I do Next" Clinton.

I understand Mrs. Clinton's obsession with other people's sex lives. Most suburban housewives (whether or not they have careers) rarely have their husband's extra-marital blowjobs splashed across the media. For years. And years. And years. So, Mrs. Clinton's resentment against sex is almost understandable.

What I don't get is how this suburban mother can get all hotted-up about virtual sex in a video game that requires the player to virtually slaughter innocent bystanders and cops, to win.

Isn't she as appalled by the violence as she is about the sex?

I think not.

I think people like Clinton, and her old pal, Mrs. Tipper "I Got Decency" Gore have skewed ideas about guns because they are part of their everyday life. Most suburbanites keep guns in their homes. Sex, being outside the ken of The Senator, must freak her out, so her and her suburban mommy friends must oppose any expressions of sex. Expressions of sex in art, or music, or entertainment must be suppressed. They simply can't have it, and I assume it's because they ain't gettin' any! But, somehow, guns are OK and people being shot with guns is normal and appropriate for kids.

I think Senator Clinton is a good senator. I think she's a fucking fruit-loop when it comes to sex. But, given the options, even in the state of New York, I might as well keep voting for the lady with the whacko sexual morals than one of the corporate fundamentalists who plan to turn-over the rest of our once-great nation to the highest bidder.

But, back to the video game. Why is it OK that the game is all about slaughtering innocent bystanders, but not OK that someone gets laid in the same game?

What the fuck kind of morals are being dispensed in America?

Get real! Wake-up!

Dick Mac Recommends:

The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower, Book 1)
by Stephen King

Friday, July 22, 2005

Have You Ever Uttered Any Of These Phrases At Work?

Things you'd love to say out loud:

1. I can see your point, but I still think you're full of shit.
2. I don't know what your problem is, but I'll bet it's hard to pronounce.
3. How about never? Is never good for you?
4. I see you've set aside this special time to humiliate yourself in public.
5. I'm really easy to get along with once you people learn to see it my way.
6. I'll try being nicer if you'll try being smarter.
7. I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message.
8. I don't work here. I'm a consultant.
9. It sounds like English, but I can't understand a damn word you're saying.
10. Ahhh! I see the fuck-up fairy has visited us again.
11. I like you. You remind me of myself when I was young and stupid.
12. You are validating my inherent mistrust of strangers.
13. I have plenty of talent and vision; I just don't give a damn.
14. I'm already visualizing the duct tape over your mouth.
15. I will always cherish the initial misconceptions I had about you
16. Thank you. We're all refreshed and challenged by your unique point of view.
17. The fact that no one understands you doesn't mean you're an artist.
18. Any connection between your reality and mine is purely coincidental.
19. What am I? Flypaper for freaks!?
20. I'm not being rude. You're just insignificant
21. Congratulations, you have earned the Dumber Than a Box of Hair Award.
22. The acronym with your name won't keep me from kicking your ass outside.
23. And your crybaby whiny-assed opinion would be?
24. Do I look like a people person?
25. This isn't an office. It's Hell with fluorescent lighting.
26. I started out with nothing & still have most of it left.
27. Sarcasm is just one more service we offer.
28. If I throw a stick, will you leave?
29. Errors have been made. Others will be blamed.
30. Whatever kind of look you were going for, you missed.
31. I'm trying to imagine you with a personality.
32. A cubicle is just a padded cell without a door.
33. Can I trade this job for what's behind door #1?
34. Too many freaks, not enough circuses.
35. Chaos, panic, & disorder - my work here is done.
36. How do I set a laser printer to stun?
37. I thought I wanted a career; turns out I just wanted a salary.
38. Oh I get it . . . like humor . . . but different.

Former colleagues summarized my carreer with numbers 3, 6, and 11. I beg that numbers 23, 27, and 37 must be added to most accurately describe my relationship to the business world.

Thanks to Henry for sending this along!

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The Jimmy Haig Experience
(featuring a track by Dick Mac)

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Joke - Presidential Screwing

One day, about a month ago, George Bush was looking for a call girl. (Please suspend your belief. Everyone knows he is hot for the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. This is just a joke.)

He found three such ladies in a local lounge: a blonde, a brunette, and a redhead.

To the blonde he said, "I am the President of the United States. How much would it cost me to spend some time with you?" The blonde replied, "Two hundred dollars."

To the brunette he posed the same question, and she replied, "One hundred dollars."

He then asked the redhead and posed the same question.

She most eloquently replied, "Mr. President, if you can raise my skirt as high as my taxes, get my panties as low as my wages, get that thing of yours as hard as the times, keep it up as long as it takes to get a live person at a government office,
keep me warmer than my apartment, and screw me in private the way you do in public, then believe me, Mr. President, it ain't gonna cost you a cent."

Thanks to Eva for sending this along

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Craig Unger

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Dems Demand Santorum Apology

Apologies are hard to come by from the republican party. They are never wrong. Richard Nixon wasn't a crook. Gerald Ford was a legally appointed president. Ronald Reagan is the greatest American who ever lived. Newt Gingrich is a loving husband and father. Ann Coulter is a thinking person. Dr. Laura is a doctor. No lies ever emanate from the wrong-wing.

That part of the Massachusetts congressional delegation that still believes in the Constitution, open dialog, and thinking, have demanded an apology from Senator Santorum, of Pennsylvania. Santorum's remarks about the institutions of higher learning and the so-called 'cultural liberalism' of Boston being the reason so many boys are raped by pederasts have moved the representatives and senators of that state to confront the republican whacko.

See my original post here.

The response from Santorum's office, predictably, is that he is very sad that Massachusetts officials "have decided to politicize [the] comments"!

Santorum makes outrageous political remarks about an entire region and its citizens, and then is "sad" when confronted with it?

This is the tactic used by the wrong-wing ever since the advent of the Reagan Reaction. No dialog, no admittance of guilt or stupidity, just blame others for your mistakes and act as if you've done nothing wrong.

Santorum is an embarrassment to humanity.

I am happy that Ted Kennedy, Bill Delahunt and other Massachusetts politicians are standing-up to this sort of hate-mongering.

An article about the demand for an apology.

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Thomas Frank

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Eric Rudolph Gets Life Sentence

Eric Rudolph, the scum wrong-winger who bombed clinics, nightclubs, and the 1996 Olympic Games in the name of God, has begun receiving criminal sentences for his acts.

Yesterday, he was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of a police officer and the maiming of a clinic staff member who were casualties when he bombed a clinic in Alabama.

Soon, he will go on trial in Georgia for other bombings and murders.

Over the last thirty years, the movement to empower stupid people in America has gained momentum. The late H.L. Hunt, of Texas, began the corporate fundamentalist movement in the mid-1950s that is now strangling America. During the Eisenhower Admnistration, Ike spoke out against Hunt and his friends (which came to include the Bush family).

Ike, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, and Carter, all to some degree conservative, patriotic men (yes, even JFK, a devout Roman Catholic was barely the liberal he is painted), fought against the corporate fundamentalist movement out of Texas, and kept these whackos in check for many years.

When the corporate fundamentalists found a willing lackey in Ronald Reagan, they made their first successful push into Washington. Since that time, fundamentalists have been free to kill, rape and maim in the name of God: start with Anita Bryant's homophobic campaign just prior to the Reagan Admninistration ("Kill A Queen For Christ"), and it is not much of a leap to the crucifixion of Matthew Shepherd, the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, and the Olympic bombings to see that the federal government and society at large, have no problem allowing middle-class white people to slaughter in the name of God.

Americans and the MSM refuse to engage in the dialog that Americans killed by terrorists between 1980 and 2001 were killed by white "christian" middle-class fundamentalists acting on messages from God. It is a difficult conversation, because we are being killed by our own, not by some evil foreign power.

The MSM provided remarkable coverage of the crimes of the Left when the Weather Underground of the 1960s and 70s comitted their crimes; but have been remarkably terse and even-handed about condemning men on the Right like Rudolph and other crusaders.

Believing that God talks to you and tells you to declare war is psychotic. Only crazy people believe that God sends them orders directly. Eric Rudolph led a one-man biblical crusade, and George W Bush claims that God has told him to declare war in Iraq. Where is the christianity and patriotism in these acts? Where is the sanity? How are these two men different? How are they similar?

Rudolph is being treated like a criminal. He is scum. He deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison.

When will Americans turn their back on Bush and the rest of the corporate fundamentalists who destory in our name?

Read an AP report here.

Read the UPI report.

Read the Reuters UK report.

Here's a timeline that fails to take a tone of condemnation. An example of the MSM's even-handed, non-judgmental treatment of corporate fundamentalist criminals like Rudolph. (Written by AP and published by DatelineAlabama).

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John F. Kennedy

Monday, July 18, 2005

Oh! It's All Boston's Fault

Ask any Yankees fan, especially those who pronounce snidely that there is no rivalry between the Red Sox and the Yankees, even though their New York media (yes, even the Times) is wet with the slime of their own collective scrotums whenever the two teams play.

Ask any Lakers fan, especially Jack Nicholson who always looked so fantastically uncool in total defeat.

Ask any pretend-conservative who believes thinking is an infliction and God tells them what to do.

They'll all tell you: It's all Boston's fault.

Enter Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA), the third-ranking Republican in the land.

According to Senator Santorum, the children who were sexually abused by Catholic priests around the world are not the victims of criminals, but the entire City of Boston.

Yup! Boys raped in Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Texas are victims because, according to Senator Santorum:
When the culture is sick, every element in it becomes infected. While it is no excuse for this scandal, it is no surprise that Boston, a seat of academic, political, and cultural liberalism in America, lies at the center of the storm.

Yup! Cultural liberalism is a sick culture and the sole reason there are pederasts. I guess there are no pederasts in the Bible Belt, just in Boston.

All the bad priests? From Boston. All the divorced christians: from Boston. All the grossly obese white people sucking our health care system dry: from Boston. All the neo-conservative terrorists that blow-up clinics and nightclubs and Olympics and federal buildings: all from Boston. All the liars in Washington: all from Boston. Everything that is bad about America? It's the fault of Boston.

Yup! It's the cultural liberals that make everything bad. The overweight, divorced, bible-thumping terrorists of the South: they do nothing wrong. Everything Sen. Santorum promotes is perfect and anything that comes from thinking people is bad. The problem? Cultural Liberalism!

Yup. The culture that brought labor unions, drug safety, automobile safety, voting rights, workplace safety, food safety, and all the other evils of the 20th century: evil cultural liberals from Boston.

So . . . it's time for the cultural liberals to secede from the union and leave the good people to themselves. We can take all our tax dollars, societal stability and higher learning and join New California to form a liberal nation. We'll leave all the divorced tax-avoiding obese bible-thumpers from Virginia to New Mexico to fend for themselves. Let's see how long they last as a nation! (Hell, they hate themselves so it's unlikely they could ever form an actual nation without the help of some thinkers.)

Read about Santorum's here.

When will liberals wake-up, threaten to write their neo-con children out of the will, vote their soul instead of their pocketbooks and run these idiots back where they belong: into the hills of the backwoods?

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Friday, July 15, 2005

Farewell, My Captain!

While living in London, I became a supporter of Arsenal Football Club. The league is a winter league, and June and July are reserved for following news of player transfers and retirements.

During this off-season, I have been focused on the news story that Shaun Wright-Phillips may (or may not) leave Manchester City for the wealthy environs of Chelski Football Club, in London.

I knew, but have been in denial, that Robert Pires could leave Arsenal; but I figure he will play one last year then depart for France. I don't blame him. Arsenal will give over-30 player one-year contracts and that's it -- no exceptions. Pires can probably get three to 5 years from Lyon and should jump at the chance. I will miss him if he leaves.

Last year, Real Madrid made noises about signing Arsenal captain Patrick Vieira; but no progress was ever made, and Viera had another fantastic year at Highbury. As captain of the team since 2002, and a real team player since his signing in 1996, Viera has been one of the best players in the league.

On Thursday, it was announced that Juventus, champions of Italian Series A, have made an offer of nearly fourteen million pounds to Arsenal for Vieira's services (that's just shy of $25,000,000) and the brain trust at Highbury has accepted.

My team is losing its captain.

This is not good.

Read "Arsenal accept Juve's Vieira bid" at the BBC Football site.

Farewell, my captain!
Good luck!
I hope they are kind to you in Turin.

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Arsenal FC

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Lost Liberty Hotel

(I don't know how this one got past me for two weeks!)

Freestar Media, LLC, has decided to build The Lost Liberty Hotel, at 34 Cilley Hill Road, Weare, New Hampshire.

Weare is a lovely, bucolic, mountain community between Manchester and Concord.

Much of New Hampshire is prime tourist land. All year people from the Northeast flock to vacation homes, rented chalets, ski slopes, beaches, and cheap motels to get away from it all. The tourist trade in New Hampshire is huge and growing and generates a LOT of cash for the local communities.

Lovely, quaint Weare, and redneck New Hampshire, would benefit hugely from a hotel built on the grounds of the two-story colonial farmhouse at 34 Cilley Hill Road. A wise developer and architect could incorporate the existing structure into an upscale New England Country Inn.

The existing residential structure, valued at $100,000, generated $2,895 in property taxes for the government in 2004. A thirty-room Inn or Hotel would likely generate that per month or per week, and unlike the existing structure, it could employ Weare residents and generate ancillary economic windfalls with the tourist trade generated by the new enterprise.

There is nothing wrong with the existing structure. In fact, it is in pristine condition and is a lovely residential property. Herein lies the rub: it really doesn't generate much income for the state or the citizenry, and replacing it with a going-concern (like a hotel) would be a wise move for the local community.

In the not-so-distant past, the idea that a perfectly good residential property could be taken by eminent domain to make way for a corporate enterprise was unthinkable. Sure, property was taken for public works, but what idiot would think it's a good idea to take someone's home for a hotel?

Well, the current owner and resident of 34 Cilley Hill Road thinks the government should do just that. The owner and resident of 34 Cilley Hill Road agrees publicly and professionally that the government should be able to take any property at any time for private development under the Fifth Amendment, which allows governments to take private property if the land is for public use. The owner and resident of 34 Cilley Hill Road believes that any project a local government believes might create jobs and revenue is good enough reason to force the resident from his home.

Personally, I disagree. Well, of course I disagree! I understand the taking of property to build highways and other public works; but, taking property so a developer can build a mall or a hotel is patently absurd.

The owner and resident of 34 Cilley Hill Road is David Souter, an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. In June, he sided with a majority opinion in the case Kelo vs. City of New London and allowed New London to take a private owner's land to build a mall. Yup! Another mall, just what Connecticut needs!

The decision actually includes this sentence:
Petitioners' proposal that the Court adopt a new bright-line rule that economic development does not qualify as a public use is supported by neither precedent nor logic.

Not supported by logic? So, according to the owner and resident of 34 Cilley Hill Road, it is therefore logical that development of a mall should take precedent over the rights of a citizen landowner. I don't see any logic in the quoted sentence written by another master of jurisprudence, Justice John Paul Stevens, nor do I think my interpretation is particularly illogical. Justices Souter and Stevens (along with Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, and Breyer) believe that economic development trumps private land ownership.

Let's see if Souter has the courage of his convictions!

Will the Board of Selectmen of Weare, New Hampshire, actually entertain the proposal by Freestar Media, LLC? The proposal promises to improve the local economy of the town with jobs and huge tax payments.

Isn't it the job of the Selectmen to jump at this opportunity, especially now that the owner and resident of 34 Cilley Hill Road agrees so stridently that taking his home is best for the community and the State?

I think the Selectmen would be derelict in their duty as representatives if they did not grant this proposal the proper hearing and due process; and failed to work personally to make it all happen. They owe it to the citizenry!

I never thought I would embrace the taking of personal property by eminent domain; but here is the day. I hope and pray that the Board of Selectmen of Weare, New Hampshire, force the owner and resident of 34 Cilley Hill Road to stand with the courage of his convictions and turn-over his farmhouse for the economic betterment of his community.

Of course, no wrong-winger (even cloaked in the mantle of jurisprudence) would ever apply his convictions to himself; because thinking people know that men like the owner and resident of 34 Cilley Hill Road consider themselves above the law.

Read about the development plans at the Freestar Media, LLC, site by using the links below.

Freestar Press Release

Freestar Letter to the Town of Weare

Read the many Blogsphere entries and MSM stories with this simple Google search.

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Wednesday, July 13, 2005

London Bombings Deemed Suicide-Bombings

According to reports from the BBC and AP, it seems the bombings in London were perpetrated by suicide-bombers.

Though the tactic was used by the IRA during their conflict with the British Government, and by ETA in their conflict with the Spanish Government, suicide-bombers have historically no committed terror in Western Europe.

The personal nature of standard suicide-bombing means that it generally occurs in places where the perpetrator lives in close proximity to the victim(s), straps explosives to their body, and commits their crime. Places like Palestine and Iraq have been plagued by suicide-bombings because the political and socio-economic conditions (or lack thereof) create a disenfranchised group of young men personally affected by the conditions, who see no other way to take a stand.

When the British government finally came to their senses and began negotiations with the disenfranchised (the Catholics) of Northern Ireland, they leap-frogged the terrorists (the I.R.A.) and began dealing directly with their citizenry who had (and still have) legitimate complaints. By negotiating with the citizenry, the Government turned the tide of support against the terrorists, began working to improve the lot of their oppressed citizenry, and the progress in Northern Ireland has been remarkable.

When ETA began to lose public support because of civilian casualties in their bombings, they began isolating their tactics to physical structures and have tried to avoid civilian casualties.

Since the absurd policies of Britain and Spain pale when compared to the Zionism of Israel, it is unlikely the government of Israel will successfully halt the personal terror that is suicide-bombings.

In Western Europe, most Muslims from North Africa and the Middle East have not been treated well after immigration. As young men in these communities become more disenfranchised, it is likely the terror of suicide-bombings could increase.

In the United States, most Muslims from around the world have found comfort and prosperity as American citizens. They have no interest in disrupting the American way of life, and many mosques have worked closely with law enforcement agencies to expose potential criminals.

The personal nature of suicide-bombing requires a disenfranchised class of people that, no matter our criticism of American culture, just does not exist in the United States. As badly as we have come to treat the poor, the poor in the United States are better-off than the poor in any other nation. (Of course, the corporate fundamentalists want to lessen the lot of the poor in the United States, so this could change rapidly; but, today, the culture of the United States does, generally, offer opportunities to all.)

What's my point? As long as dialog among neighbors continues in the United States, as long as inter-faith and multi-faith congresses continue to meet, as long as we strive to promote something representing a just economic system, it is unlikely that young men in the United States will strap explosives to their bodies and kill their neighbors.

What happened in London last week is an atrocity. If anyone involved is found to be alive, they should rot in prison for the rest of their life. However, if the West does not address the problems and complaints of the underprivileged, the disenfranchised are more likely to commit this heinous, most personal crime.

This entry at about last week's London bombings includes a list of the victims.

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Tuesday, July 12, 2005

"Old Whores Never Die . . . "

In the late 1970s, playwright Robert Patrick wrote "The Family Bar," a piece about clandestine encounters between prostitutes and their clients. Patrick's twist is that nuclear families had been deemed illegal, and johns paid prostitutes to act like parents or siblings or children. No sex was invovled, it was just people paying to act like relatives. Hysterical!

In the vein of prostitution surprises, published this report from Rueters:
Jul 11, 9:15 AM (ET)
BERLIN (Reuters) - A Berlin grandmother who has worked the city's diplomatic quarter as a prostitute for the last 49 years plans to retire when she turns 64 next year, according to Germany's Bild newspaper.

Even though prostitutes were forced to leave the area after the Berlin Wall, fell because dead-end streets in the downtrodden district were re-connected to east Berlin and property values surged, Renate Dolle was allowed to stay, Bild said.

"I've got a lot of regular clients," the blonde woman told the newspaper, pictured wearing a short red mini skirt and high-heeled white boots as she stood near the Japanese embassy. She said she charges 30 euros ($36) and on good nights she has four to five clients.

"I'm going to stop at 64 and retire," said Dolle, whose husband drops her off for work each night after the television evening news and who has a nine-year-old granddaughter.

She is one of 10,000 prostitutes in Berlin and 400,000 in Germany, where prostitution is legal. Dolle said she tried to work in a popular red light district nearby recently but was chased away by younger competitors.

"What do you want here, you old whore, get lost," Dolle said they shouted at her. "What did I ever do to them?"

As Robert Patrick once wrote: "Old whores never die, they just start buying it back."

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Monday, July 11, 2005

Dear Red States:

We're ticked off at the way you've treated California, and we've decided we're leaving. We intend to form our own country, and we're taking the other Blue States with us.

In case you aren't aware, that includes Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois and all the Northeast. We believe this split will be beneficial to the nation, and especially to the people of the new country of New

To sum up briefly:

You get Texas, Oklahoma and all the slave states.
We get stem cell research and the best beaches.
We get Elliot Spitzer. You get Ken Lay.
We get the Statue of Liberty. You get OpryLand.
We get Intel and Microsoft. You get WorldCom.
We get Harvard. You get Ole' Miss.
We get 85 percent of America's venture capital and entrepreneurs. You get Alabama.
We get two-thirds of the tax revenue, you get to make the red states pay their fair share.

Since our aggregate divorce rate is 22 percent lower than the Christian Coalition's, we get a bunch of happy families. You get a bunch of single moms.

Please be aware that Nuevo California will be pro-choice and antiwar, and we're going to want all our citizens back from Iraq at once. If you need people to fight, ask your evangelicals.

They have kids they're apparently willing to send to their deaths for no purpose, and they don't care if you don't show pictures of their children's caskets coming home. We do wish you success in Iraq, and hope that the WMDs turn up, but we're not willing to spend our resources in Bush's Quagmire.

With the Blue States in hand, we will have firm control of 80 percent of the country's fresh water, more than 90 percent of the pineapple and lettuce, 92 percent of the nation's fresh fruit, 95 percent of America's quality wines (you can serve French wines at state dinners) 90 percent of all cheese, 90 percent of the high tech industry, most of the U.S. low-sulfur coal, all living redwoods, sequoias and condors, all the Ivy League and Seven Sisters schools, plus Stanford, CalTech and MIT.

With the Red States, on the other hand, you will have to cope with 88 percent of all obese Americans (and their projected health care costs), 92 percent of all U.S. mosquitoes, nearly 100 percent of the tornadoes, 90 percent of the hurricanes, 99
percent of all Southern Baptists, virtually 100 percent of all televangelists, Rush Limbaugh, Bob Jones University, Clemson and the University of Georgia.

We get Hollywood and Yosemite, thank you.

Additionally, 38 percent of those in the Red states believe Jonah was actually swallowed by a whale, 62 percent believe life is sacred unless we're discussing the death penalty or gun laws, 44 percent say that evolution is only a theory, 53 percent that Saddam was involved in 9/11 and 61 percent of you crazy bastards believe you are people with higher morals than we lefties.

By the way, we're taking the good pot, too. You can have that dirt weed they grow in Mexico.

Author Unknown in New California

Thanks to Eva for sending this along!

Dick Mac Recommends:

What's the Matter with Kansas?
Thomas Frank

Friday, July 08, 2005

Joke - Traffic Jam

A lobbyist on his way home from work in Washington, DC, came to a dead halt in traffic and thought to himself, "Wow, this traffic jam seems worse than usual."

Then he noticed a police officer walking between the lines of stopped cars so he rolled down his window and asked, "Officer, what's the holdup?"

The officer replied, "The President is depressed, so he stopped his motorcade and is threatening to douse himself with gasoline and set himself on fire.

He says no one believes his stories about why we went to war in Iraq, or that his tax cuts will help anyone except his wealthy friends. So we're taking up a collection for him."

The lobbyist asked, "How much have you got so far?"

The officer replied, "About forty gallons, but a lot of folks are still siphoning."

Thanks to Jendi for sending this along.

Dick Mac Recommends:

My Life
Bill Clinton

Thursday, July 07, 2005

London Hit By Bombs

Why is this still happening in this day and age?

London is one of the most secure cities in the entire world. After decades of internal strife, innumerable bombings and gruesome death tolls, London seemed to have become very safe. Today, at least six bombs were detonated in Central London, one on a double decker bus.

As of 12:00 London time, the Metropolitan Police have advised:
Please stay where you are and do not call the emergency services except in life-threatening situations.

An emergency hotline number will be announced shortly.

Two people are known to be dead, and "large numbers of casualties have been reported."

Mrs. Mac and I used many of these tube stations while living in London and some of my friends and colleagues still use these lines and stations to commute.

Nobody has claimed responsibility for the blasts that occurred one day after London celebrated their appointment as hosts of the 2012 Olympics, and Britain began hosting the G8 conference.

Here is the latest BBC article (5:47 A.M. New York time).

Some first-hand accounts as of 7:04 A.M. New York Time.

Now MSNBC is reporting twenty dead.

I am unable to get through to friends and colleagues by phone. I have no first-hand information at this time.

I pray that everyone is safe, the death toll is low, and those who are suffering find comfort and care.


8:21 A.M. New York time

I've just heard from a friend who lives in North London and commutes on the Northern Line. She was running late and was turned away at her local Tube station. She missed the explosions. Thank God!


1:36 P.M. New York time

Mrs. Mac and I have now heard that all our friends and colleagues in London are accounted-for.


7:30 P.M. New York time

Four bombs were detonated (not six) that affected six tube stations and a bus.


Dick Mac Recommends:

Down and Out in Paris and London
George Orwell

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

What are you worth?

Sadly, I am only worth $2,063,566, according to Human For Sale.

How much are you worth?

Dick Mac Recommends:

The Problem Of Pain
by C.S. Lewis

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Pop Star and Husband "Lose" In Albany

I would love to pay a thousand bucks to live in my two-bedroom apartment. It would really help me better make ends meet.

Rent control laws, and the undermining rent-stabilization laws that followed, were designed to ensure that New York would be affordable for all people, including those needed to wash all the floors, and drive the buses, and type the letters, and buy a beer at the clubs.

In post-Reagan America, the middle-class was convinced that laws like rent control (and services like health care and welfare and food assistance) only helped the rich and since the poor were not benefiting, the laws should be eliminated.

Myriad stories appeared (and sometimes still appear) in the press about welfare queens, and well-to-do people who take advantage (and often abuse) the few helpful laws that remain on the books. Most of these people then avoid punishment, or win wonderful victories in the court, because they can actually afford a legal team.

These stories help to complete the total undermining of laws designed to protect the poor.

Sadly, there is a heart-wrenching story about the evils of scum landlords and mean courts and needy people.

A couple (one a pop star and the other an actor) managed to secure a 5-room apartment in a very exclusive and historic Upper West Side building for $3,250 per month. Securing an apartment like this at any price is fantastic!

A few years into their lease, they realized they had been duped and the lease under which they were paying a standard New York City rent was illegal and they were actually in a rent-control apartment!

They had the good fortune of affording lawyers, and did what everyone in that position should do: they sued to have the lease terminated and rewritten based on the legal rent allowed. They won! A dramatic victory for the rent-control movement.

Anyone who can afford to right a wrong should do it, and they should stand in the glory of their success and bask in the warm light of knowing they've done the right thing.

The standard equation designed by the New York State housing department for determining the rent of apartments illegally removed from control and/or stabilization was applied to the original rent-controlled figure and the government, representing the taxpayers, determined that the rent for this spectacular apartment should be a thousand bucks!

What a windfall! A fantastic victory for everyone but the scum landlord. A victory for the couple, a victory for the City, a victory for the poor.

Things then took a bad turn.

Both sides appealed.

The landlord automatically appealed the verdict, as all losing parties do. That is their prerogative. The landlords are scum and one would expect no less.

From what I understand this irked the previously victorious couple and they appealed saying that the thousand bucks was still too high! They want to pay the original rent-controlled price of $508.


From what others have told me, their appeal seems based on resentment against the landlord's appeal, not any desire to do the right thing (since the right thing had already been done by them).

Fortunately, another great victory for the taxpayers ensued when New York's highest court told the couple to piss-off! I guess judges can see unadulterated avarice when it appears in the grey suits of a legal team. The couple who could have been champions of fairness and paragons of the moral high-ground, lowered themselves to the same level as the scum landlords.

The court reaffirmed that the $989 rent offered to them by the working people of New York State was the perfectly legal rent due.

So, the couple, after missing the opportunity to be heroes for the little guy, will bitterly pay less for a luxury apartment than most working-poor pay for a tenement slum.

These people of privilege will have to scrape by paying deeply reduced rent (but not reduced enough for them). This is America: if you can afford a good lawyer then you deserve the best; if you can't afford a good lawyer then too bad! If you're well-off and you can manipulate the law, then you are deemed a success.

Be certain to send them congratulations! Sure hope they'll make ends meet.


This is a very confusing issue, and the media does not know how to report this, so it doesn't surprise me that many are unsure if they should defend the couple.

"Girls Just Want a Bargain Apartment? Court Favors [Pop Star]," reports the New York Times

"[Pop Star] Wins Rent Reduction," reports KGET-TV

"[Pop Star] must pay up," reports News24

"[Pop Star] WINS RENT REDUCTION," reports Contactmusic

"[Pop Star] loses rent lawsuit," reports the Chicago Tribune

"[Pop Star] Loses Bid for Cheap Rent," reports E! Online

"[Pop Star] Loses Bid for Cheap Rent," reports New York Newsday


So, nobody can tell us clearly if the couple won or lost, and they are remaining suspiciously silent about the case (their apologists call it 'private'). So, you must draw your own conclusions.

My conclusion: the losers are the taxpayers and the rent-control movement. But, nobody cares about them anymore.

Dick Mac Recommends:

Lessons from Deregulation
Alfred E. Kahn

Monday, July 04, 2005

Freedom of Speech

Freedom of Speech is a hallmark of American patriotism, and July 4th is the ultimate public celebration of American independence.

Dissent is a logical off-shoot of Freedom of Speech. Well, unless you are a corporate fundamentalist wrapped in the flag and the christus, and totally unable to grasp the notions of freedom.

In my lifetime, two dramatic expressions of American patriotism changed all of the world: first was the Civil Rights and Voting Rights movement, and the other was the anti-war movement. Prior to the passage of the Patriot Act in 2001 (the most unpatriotic law ever passed), citizens were allowed, even encouraged, to speak-out when they disagreed with the government. No more, though. You can actually be arrested for dissent.

Since the conglomeration of American business after the Reagan-era, people have been less interested in dissent and conflict, because consumerism has replaced patriotism. Today, the way you express patriotism is to purchase a flag or a magnet shaped like a ribbon and painted in stars and stripes. Any actual thoughtful, intellectual, or insightful expression of your opinion as an American is seen as unpatriotic.

In the 1960s and 1970s, during the movements I watched change the world, songs of protest were embraced by music fans, publishers and broadcasters alike. It was exciting that Americans were lifting their voices in song to express dissent. For me, the greatest anti-war song of my childhood was Freda Payne's "Bring The Boys Home." I listen to it almost everyday, still. I have written about it before.

My limited exposure to new pop music prevents me from knowing about recent protest songs, especially anti-war songs.

In my search for current anti-war songs (if there were any), I found Norman Jenson's onegoodmove blog and his listing of anti-war songs.

Check it out!

Happy Independence Day! Celebrate by expressing an opinion.

Dick Mac Recommends:

What's the Matter with Kansas?
Thomas Frank

Friday, July 01, 2005

Recipe - Dick Mac BBQ Sauce

(makes three cups)

It's a holiday weekend in the United States, which means grilling. This is the BBQ sauce I use on my parboiled chicken parts.

2 cups cider vinegar
2/3 cup ketchup
1 tbsp mustard
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp chocolate or cocoa
1 tbsp Tabasco (more if you like)
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp soy sauce or tamari
2 tbsp butter
1 tsp red pepper flakes
A few cloves pressed garlic (as you like)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Combine all ingredients in heavy saucepan and cook over medium/low heat for 20-30 minutes.

Let cool before using on grill.

OK: the secret ingredient I sometimes use is replacing a half-cup of vinegar with a half-cup of the morning's leftover coffee, the stronger the better. (I've even used flat Coca-Cola, but increase the garlic or hot pepper if you do.)

I wasn't going to tell you that, but I adore you so there.

Dick Mac Recommends:

The Wild, the Innocent, & the E Street Shuffle
Bruce Springsteen