New York Times Magazine
In the Letters section of a famous old organ of contemporary belles-lettres a potential homicidal maniac manifests the first stirrings of what could be real trouble:
I lived in the Fairbanks, Alaska area for almost 14 years and spent a great deal of time in the bush. I appreciated the silence there, psychologically depended on it. I spent many hours just sitting in places where quiet filled my ears, but there were also many times that the sounds of nature were almost deafening (the mosquitoes!). I always found that nature’s “silence,” that is, what remains when the din of human presence is subtracted, far superior as an affirmation of being. Only there can I really become aware of the effect of my presence. Here in the New York-Boston corridor, noise is everywhere, almost impossible to bear. I can’t separate my presence from the noise. I miss the silence and my absence within it.
(April 1, 2012)
The Afghan war, wherein American soldiers are murdered by their Afghan allies in their offices and on the field of combat, as seen through the bloodshot eyes of a typical Nation editorialist:
The murder in Panjwai of sixteen civilians, including nine children, by an American soldier on March 11 puts an exclamation point on ten and a half years of failed war in Afghanistan.
Following repeated US bombings of wedding parties, countless dead civilians as a result of night raids and drone strikes, atrocities by the notorious “kill team” in 2010 and, in 2012, the digitally recorded image of US troops urinating on dead Afghans and the burning of Korans, the United States is far from success in its longest-running imperial misadventure.…
Whatever trust there was between US troops and the people they were protecting and training has long since been broken, and there is nothing for the United States to do now but leave in the most responsible way it can.
(April 2, 2012)
Dithyrambic utterances from one Gavriel Brown, trapped in his hallucinations about Occupy Faith:
Soon, we will be raising the matzah, pointing to it and saying, “This is the bread of afflictions which our forefathers ate in the land of Egypt.” But today we held up a gas can representing ecological desolation wrought in the callous pursuit of profit. We intoned “this is the gasoline of afflictions which has brought forth environmental devastation upon this land.”…So we marched against the pyramids of power: the banks, the detention centers and the gas stations to which modern man is enslaved. We marched against modern-day pharaohs and recounted the modern–day plagues brought against us—the plagues of spiraling student loans, foreclosed homes, environmental disasters and unemployment.…We are Occupy Faith, a subcommittee of the Occupy Wall Street movement bringing together religious leaders from all communities and denominations committed to equality, liberation, fairness, sanctity, and mutual respect.
(April 4, 2012)
The benighted commentary of an emotional wreck over at msnNOW—whatever that may be—who apparently encountered some typically cosmopolitan youths enjoying the fruits of a nearby sushi bar:
Weep America, weep for your sons and daughters who go off to school to get expensive degrees in “communication” and then end up spending long nights filming each other chugging things using beer bongs. Weep too, America, for the 36 goldfish who were chugged in this beer bong, their brief beautiful lives snuffed out by what appears to be a bunch of hateful college kids hanging around a dorm bathroom. We don’t know what’s sadder, the pointless death of the goldfish or the fact a bunch of “young adults” are standing around laughing about it.
(April 14, 2012)
Balmy musings of one Chris Mooney, Liberal idealist:
Let’s face it: We liberals and progressives are absolutely outraged by partisan misinformation. Lies about “death panels.” People seriously thinking that President Obama is a Muslim, not born in the United States. Climate-change denial. Debt ceiling denial. These things drive us crazy, in large part because we can’t comprehend how such intellectual abominations could possibly exist.
And not only are we enraged by lies and misinformation; we want to refute them—to argue, argue, argue about why we’re right and Republicans are wrong. Indeed, we often act as though right-wing misinformation’s defeat is nigh, if we could only make people wiser and more educated (just like us) and get them the medicine that is correct information.
(April 14, 2012)
New York Times
At The American Spectator we call them the Episodic Apologists, the contemporary American journalists writing about the Clintons: now full of hope, then in the sloughs of despond, suddenly full of hope again. Of Hillary and Bill, the Times editorialized in 2001 that its editors might “never understand the process by which a departing president and his wife come to put sofas and flatware ahead of the acute sense of propriety that ought to go with high office.” And the New York Observer lamented, “It is clear now that we [New Yorkers] have made a terrible mistake, for Hillary Rodham Clinton is unfit for elective office. Had she any shame she would resign.”
Now, eleven years later, the girlish, giggly Maureen Dowd is still at it:
Hillary is not going to President Obama’s Democratic convention in Charlotte. Evidently she’s going to wait for her own…. Her savvy public image gambit on Tuesday sent a signal she may not be leaving the stage forever. She has not only shored up her techie cred and popularity with young people. Hillary, who kept the press at a distance in 2008, is now well-liked by the press corps traveling with her around the world. Unlike Obama, she seems to enjoy going out with reporters and having a cocktail after a hard day of trilats.
In another sign she’s in vogue, she’s the model for a character, Elaine Barrish Hammond, a defeated presidential contender and divorced former first lady who becomes secretary of state, in a new TV show called “Political Animals” scheduled to air this summer on the USA Network. Hillary will be conjured up by Sigourney Weaver, wearing a ruby-red pantsuit in the first scene and described in the script this way: “Even in the pantsuit she’s breathtaking. Brilliant and indefatigable—Elaine is a force and a beauty…she has a regal countenance. If America had a queen, it would be Elaine.”
(April 10, 2012)
At large on the worldwide web Miss Sasha Brown-Worsham displays the febrile ratiocinations of her brain after a life spent on cannabis, or perhaps she went to the University of California at Berkeley:
April 20 or 4/20 is National Weed Day! We all know what that means. It’s time to break out our pipes, roll our joints, and light it up, right?
OK, in all seriousness, this day is just like any other day for the grand majority of us, but it IS the day of smoking for many avid fans of Mary Jane. Why? Because of a group of five San Rafael High School friends known as the Waldos who loved to smoke and started calling pot 420 back in 1971.
You can read the whole story over at Huffington Post, but for our purposes, the main takeaway is this: We need to legalize it! Here are 5 good reasons:
- Better for the economy: Oh suuuuureee, we could be talking about tax dollars used for drugs, but generally speaking, I am thinking of Little Debbie, Cheetos, and Pringles. Who keeps them in business but stoners? The more stoners, the more money being invested back in the snack industry. Genius, right?
- Better night drivers: Marijuana is said to be good for cataracts and that means better night vision. For many this would translate to better driving at night. Hopefully people would smoke their pot off the road, but the net result could be better driving in general, right? Besides, pot heads usually drive slower anyway.
- Happier citizens: Who isn’t happy on pot? There is a reason it’s called getting “high” not getting all low and depressed and snarky. High people are happy people and who doesn’t need a little more spark?
- Goodbye road rage: Pot slows everything down while driving speeds everything up and makes us crazy. While no one would advocate driving under the influence, even a little pot at the end of a long day would do much to reduce stress and, therefore, to reduce road rage while driving the next day. Yes, please!
- Increase in awesome ideas: Have you ever noticed that high people come up with the best ideas in the world? Think of the increase in creativity that would happen if we legalized it!
These are jokes, obviously. But the idea is serious. Legalization would lead to so many good things, not the least of which is pain relief, which is no small thing.
So if you don’t smoke anymore because you’re too old (like me), at the very least, don’t close your mind to it. Marijuana has its place and is no worse than alcohol, which IS legal.
Would you support legalization?
(April 20, 2012)