Current Wisdom

Current Wisdom

By From the November 2011 issue

U.S. Department of State Diplomacy in Action
The Hon. Hillary Rodham Clinton, the greatest secretary of state since Elihu P. Root and husband of Boy Clinton, sends felicitations to a fledgling superpower in hopes of creating another Axis of Benevolence:

On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I am delighted to send congratulations to the people of San Marino as you celebrate your national holiday, the Feast of San Marino, this September 3.

The Republic of San Marino is an inspiring example to the world. You have transcended centuries of political turmoil, and today you are unwavering in your commitment to democracy and human rights. Around the world your contributions to development and humanitarian assistance, and your continued partnership in international organizations, have impacted the lives of so many.

As you celebrate this special day with family, friends, and loved ones, know that the United States stands with you as a partner and friend.

(September 1, 2011)

New York Times
The hyena in Doctor Paul Krugman finally emerges on his blog at the fabulous Times:

Is it just me, or are the 9/11 commemorations oddly subdued?

Actually, I don't think it's me, and it's not really that odd.

What happened after 9/11--and I think even people on the right know this, whether they admit it or not--was deeply shameful. The atrocity should have been a unifying event, but instead it became a wedge issue. Fake heroes like Bernie Kerik, Rudy Giuliani, and, yes, George W. Bush raced to cash in on the horror. And then the attack was used to justify an unrelated war the neocons wanted to fight, for all the wrong reasons.

A lot of other people behaved badly. How many of our professional pundits--people who should have understood very well what was happening--took the easy way out, turning a blind eye to the corruption and lending their support to the hijacking of the atrocity?

The memory of 9/11 has been irrevocably poisoned; it has become an occasion for shame. And in its heart, the nation knows it.

I'm not going to allow comments on this, for obvious reasons.

(September 11, 2011)

Seattle Times
On the correspondence page of a great daily, Joe from Seattle climbs the literary heights to boom a cult leader from the Big Apple:

Ignorance is “tragic”
Paul Krugman is right to call attention to the benighted anti-intellectualism that pervades much of the GOP [“Don't dazzle them with science,” Opinion, Aug. 30].

In the vapid tradition of Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush, Rick Perry is the latest opportunistic Republican to regale the American public with superficial bloviation that is as simplistic as it is just plain wrong.

Perry may or may not believe the silly nonsense he so generously spouts. However, it is tragic that so much stupidity is taken for serious discourse by so many citizens.

More tragic still is that willful ignorance would be considered advantageous to any political party in these parlous times.
-- Joe Martin, Seattle

(August 31, 2011)

Harvard Magazine
In the pages of the Harvard State University gazette, a notice from a pest:

Exquisite Thin Brunette; 44

She is 5'6”, graceful, funny, happy, creative and accomplished. She seeks a kind, intelligent, affectionate man 45–55. True intimacy matters.

No Republican need apply.

If you'd like to meet her, please e-mail: or phone us: 617.335.5353

Our client has paid all fees.

(Sept.– Oct. 2011)

Poughkeepsie Journal
DeWayne Wickham, columnist for Gannett News Service and a gentleman of color, taps out his last lines as the all-white mobs don their sheets and prepare to descend on the Republic:

For much of his time in the White House, the rap against Barack Obama has been that he is a weak leader--a man who is a much better talker than doer when it comes to managing the nation's affairs.

Don't believe it.

This knock against the nation's first black president stems from his low-key approach to combating Republican opposition to virtually everything he does--and his passive response to the disrespect of GOP members, such as those who called him a liar during a speech on the House floor, who wouldn't take his call in the middle of the debt-ceiling crisis, and who referred to him as a “boy” and his policy as a “tar baby.”

(September 17, 2011)

The Progressive
Experimental prose employed on behalf of wit and hilaritas at the agelastic Prog:

New York Representative Anthony Weiner finally admitted to online ickiness. Everyone has a right to be icky, but it made for an odd gay-straight reversal in New York. There were the junk shots, greased ab shots, accusations, and tearful denials from a straight guy while the gay people were fully clothed in Albany, lobbying for the right to gentrify marriage.

(September 2011)

New York
In the pages of an urban American journal of New Age esotery, a report on placentophagia. Can cannibalism be far off?

Jennifer Hughes's placenta was delivered ten minutes after her first child, just before midnight on March 31. It was on the large side, with a liverish texture and bluish tinge; it measured nine inches in diameter and weighed a pound and a half. Placentas are considered biohazardous waste by the medical establishment and are usually disposed of accordingly. Some hospitals send the afterbirth in formaldehyde to a pathology lab for analysis before it is carted off by a tissue-disposal service; others toss it out with bloody miscellany in special containers.

But in the birth plan that Hughes brought with her to Beth Israel Medical Center, she specified that she wanted to keep her placenta, for cultural reasons. Complying with New York State health regulations, which state that hospitals, “may, at the request of a patient or a patient's representative, return a healthy placenta for disposition by the patient,” the hospital allows her to take it home, and even packed it up for her.

In some cultures, it is customary to bury the placenta and plant a tree over it.

Hughes had other plans. She was going to eat it.

(August 29, 2011)

From the Archives
Timeless Tosh from Current Wisdoms Past
(November 1991)

Federal News Service
The Wall Street Journal passes on another oratorical masterpiece preserved by the Federal News Service some time after its point of origin, the Hon. Joseph Biden, finished his three-martini lunch:

Senator Biden: “Okay. I'm beginning to understand. So, natural law informed the notion of liberty. You and I have both read--because of our backgrounds, I suspect--we've both read--I won't get into Aquinas and Augustine and all that, but Locke looked back to the concept of natural law as an evolving notion. Montesquieu talked about it. Jefferson understood it. He was in Paris. He was probably the only one that fully understood it. But others who were there writing the Constitution, they talked about it, they had what they wrote--both the Declaration, as you say, in other places and in the Constitution--they reduced these broad notions of natural law--the natural rights of man to this document.”

(September 12, 1991)

Vancouver Sun
The Vancouver Sun reports on another Toronto tourist trap:

Two lesbians, who say they enjoy bondage, order a drink and retire to the club's whipping bench. They take turns thrashing each others' behinds as one at a time they arch their backs over the leather-bound table, securing their wrists in buckled stirrups.…

For Gallo, Fetish Night is like a sexual supermarket where she can spend the evening shopping around before making a final selection. She says it's one of the few places in Toronto where she can find what she's looking for--a man who wants to be controlled.

“If you go to [an average singles club], it's hard going up to a guy and saying: ‘Excuse me, do you mind tying me up?'

“Here, I'll approach people, find out what they're into and arrange to met them later if we're in sync.” …

Heymes notes that police regularly check the club and have made no complaints.

“We're offering a venue for people who are into that lifestyle to show themselves off.

“Isn't it fantastic that Toronto has something like that to offer?”

(August 13, 1991)

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