Newtown Might Be Anytown

cryingobamaSince I first heard President Obama fight back agony so wrenching it overwhelmed the indomitable propriety of his office, I sensed a depth of heartache rarely freed by a sitting president.  President Obama’s valiant attempt to sandbag the stalwart character of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue was breached nevertheless as the surge of emotion overwhelmed his duty as the harbinger of serious information to America‘s citizens.

Every time I read an article, listen to President Obama’s painful pauses, or watch television coverage I simply cry for everyone involved.  And everyone is involved.  By everyone I mean everybody; all of us; each of us.  It’s impossible to locate anyone unmoved by this horrific incident.

It’s all part of an escalation of rights protected by the constitution, to the safety of the innocent, to the invasion of privacy at pat down check-points, to righteous citizens hawking firearms at uncontrolled, unregulated gun showgunshow free-for-alls at which anyone — anyone regardless of their background — can purchase a firearm because, by law and by money and by lobbyists and by radical firearms enthusiasts, gun shows are not gun shops, gun shows are for the gun collector, the gun enthusiast.  But what do these collectors and enthusiasts feel or imagine as they feel the firearms heft, the iciness of the steel, the clip or chamber, the single cartridge trigger or the semi-automatic trigger; what do they feel or imagine that propels them to dodge laws, drop a few hundred dollars, and leave pleased as punch.  They must imagine the kickback of that first round, the power the firearm possesses, the. . .the. . .____________ of ownership.  It’s the blank I’m curious about; the “what” as to why they insist on owning firearms.

Which is their constitutional right: “To bear arms. . .”   But the Constitution doesn’t mention ammunition.

policefront deskSo here’s my idea:  Treat ammunition for publicly owned firearms in the same manner our society treats prescription drugs.  If you want ammunition you need to go to your local police department; there pharmacythey’ll write you a legal dispense order for thirty rounds only and non-refillable within a thirty day period.  The federal government would monitor ammunition shops like they monitor pharmacies.

Have all the lawless gun shows you want!  Have all the gun shops you want!  Let everyone carry concealed weapons!  And most of all, appease the self-righteous, entitlement-wielding, insensitive and ignorant myopic NRA by letting them bear as many bloody arms as they can carry!

But you can’t have any bullets.

 

March’s Centerfold of “Gimme Wood”

I’m not sure how many of you receive the monthly periodical “Gimme Wood,” but ever since March of this year when their centerfold was a beauty from Japan, I’ve been dreaming of getting my hands on one of them.  I was so determined to get one that I engaged one of those traffickers in Japan to arrange everything on my behalf and she’d be a welcomed addition to my household.

Well, lo and behold, I found her online, and while she’s not “new” she’s been gussy’d-up, had a face-lift, and, most importantly rehabilitated.  She arrived at my doorstep about three weeks ago, but I kept her in the basement guest room fearing ridicule from my friends.  It wasn’t until yesterday that I finally put my hands on her and fired her up!

Unbelievable!

A slow start but once she got going. . .Jeez, I’ve been wasting time on American ones. . .I should’ve got one from Japan last year!

She’s mine forever, and there’s nothing anyone can do to take her away from me.  At long last my mitre corners will fit and I’ll be able to saw wood 10″ wide!

I love my Makita 10-inch dual slide compound mitre saw with laser.

Election 2012: Forget the Gays! Let’s Kill the Middle-Class!

SCENE:

A mob of men and women sporting haute couture ensembles are followed by domestic staff brandishing fiery torches, weed-wackers, and gilded “breaking ground” shovels move at an accelerated pace (note: they are not running; they never run; they simply walk with tremendous determination) between the craggy, overhanging cliffs somewhere near Malibu or the tall, dense sand dunes near the Hampton’s.  They scream hateful epithets like “And you thought Polo was just an after-shave,” or “Only a monster prepares his own taxes,” or “Even a hunchback is beholden to religion for its servile and miserable life.”

CUT TO:

A group of men and women run up narrow, rocky paths or stumble through swallowing, deep sand.  They’re absolutely terrified, and yet they clutch one or two possessions (laptop, picture frames, deed to a house) even though their requires two hands.  You get the sense that they’re clutching all that remains of their life.  Suddenly a heavyset, winded man loses his balance and though others try to grab his free hand, they yell things like, “Let go of the picture,” or “It’s only a college degree!”

But suddenly he holds the framed diploma tightly against his chest as he teeters over the edge and everyone watches as he falls into the abyss tightly holding his most precious possession.

Welcome to December, 2012 if the Republican machine takes hold of the White House.

I think that it’s perfectly normal to ignore distracting noise, especially campaign noise, when 120% of your attention to personal-matters-at-hand is parsed and you’re really not interested in cockfighting.

That is until your private AGI (adjusted gross income) permits political campaigns to assign you a specific economic class moniker. The herding of same AGI’s should get your attention.  Once you’ve been economically branded you begin to recognize topics related to your self-proclaimed monikers (or, sub-classifications) which label behaviors and values, your distinguishing parts, (which you once defended, affirmed, and proudly paraded). These distinguishing parts have been diminished by time into a complex, amalgamated you much less the “youthfully combative sum of your parts” and much more like your mother or father (with very distinctive differences).

Until the amalgamated you becomes campaign fodder, a cadaver dissected in public by wielding derisive displays of contempt and hatred resurrecting foregone battles to right history’s wrongs and to spread fear like an airborne toxin.  How on earth, you think to yourself, have I been put on the ballot?

Because the run for leader of the free world has nothing to do with leading.  It’s become a referendum prosecuting or defending the future of the middle-class.  The American middle-class: devoted family, work ethics, values, respect, you get what you can afford, hard-working, proud, stable, honest, neighborly, caught. . .in the middle. . .of change.

But greed changed all that.  First bankers got greedy, then brokers got greedy, the home owners got greedy, and then. . .lower to lower-middle class were qualified for mortgages on real estate which was falsely inflated to satisfy everyone’s greed.  Families that simply couldn’t afford to buy a home found themselves underwater (owing more that the home is really worth.  In other words sellers, brokers and lenders all told varying degrees of lies and the poor schmuck wanting his piece of the American Dream ended up being the real sucker in the scheme.  But not one banking executive has gone to jail or forced to pay for those lousy mortgages out of their skyrocketing profits.

Self-Interest: Corruption Guaranteed

I think it happened during the Reagan years.  It was around the time of power ties and the advent of cellular technology.  That was when the in America became more important than any group pronoun such as us, we, our, them.  When self-interest became an ideology was precisely the moment that the we as a nation became a dirty word.  America’s current woes stem from an obscene degree of entitlement, a self-indulgent morality, and a despicable depth of greed; the sum of which creates an environment of distrust which is fed a diet of impossible promises by leaders (edited and misrepresented by news outlets (who themselves have self-interest)) and the disintegrating pride to be a citizen of the United States of America.

It’s not a coincidence that the dawn of the internet was cloudy at first; mainstream America had little use for its content.  But what ignited the web’s wildfire was the moment that disparaged and isolated men and women of many sexually divergent activities discovered each other through unmoderated global chat rooms; next to stumble through the door were the curious; then, like Alice following Rabbit, children handily navigated the new technology (like a game) and dropped dead-smack into chatrooms like raw meat tossed into the cages of nasty predators.  Adults indulged their reputations too long; their admission of ignorance and thus training in the technology of the internet might’ve invoked authorities to act, to infiltrate and prosecute, to protect; but it took adults way too long to grasp who exactly their thirteen year old sons were meeting at the arcade.  It’s an example of self-interest both on the part of the child predator and the narrow-minded adults.

The introduction of wickedly-fast download speeds, the steep decline in popularity of “graphical user interface and proprietary software” (think AOL), the advent of simple on-ramps to the internet cable or DSL, and of course the introduction of Yahoo! and CompuServe’s email system provided accessibility to a font of information and instantaneous communication.  All this access produced a phenomenal sense of urgency, a global reach, and a sense of self-importance which exponentially exploded once Facebook emerged and quickly became the equivalence of your Christmas Card List.  Overnight America went from millions and millions of nobodies to millions and millions of nobodies with friends.  And friendship is oft borne by common interests.  And conversations around common interests tend to illuminate injustice.  Voila!  Self-Interest is born.

But what happens when no one outside of your common interest group gives a crap about your injustice?

Deadlock.  Lame Duck.  Non-negotiable.  Blame.  Intolerance.  Even insurrection, anarchy, bloodshed.

Unfortunately we’ve become a country of individuals corralled in to two political parties neither of which we feel particularly expresses how we really feel.  And there we sit, millions of disenfranchised voters waiting for November to express our citizenship by voting for one of two people (our right to vote coerced like a false confession), but neither really represents me.

But maybe, maybe it’s not about me, maybe it’s about us, us with common interests like freedom and liberty and a free market and rights and that once cherished but now forgotten or a provincial joke, the American Dream.  Our America will collapse if its forced to support millions and millions of fractious self-interested citizens.  We’ve got to agree to disagree; to stop feuding; to reconcile our differences; and to stop the pettiness of self-interest.

We’re in a disaster and we need everyone to come together; it’s called brotherhood.

Rights are Blind

I am not a fan of convention.

Convention was the double-barreled shotgun pointed at my mother and father back in April, 1955.  Convention forced them to marry.  And I suppose convention could be held partially to blame for my mother’s black-eye’s, broken nose, bruised ribs, cut lips, broken dishes, thrown plates, kitchen walls stained by brown gravy as the thrown pot-roast stuck then slid to the linoleum floor.  Yes, I suppose convention could be held partly to blame for decades of humiliation, abuse, eventual divorce, and questions my mother never had answered as to why convention revoked her right not to marry.

Convention is simply a thoughtless reaction designed to uphold order.  Marriage has been painted as the villain recently when the “have’s” and the “have-not’s” start arguing.  But it’s not Marriage we’re defending or demanding, it’s Convention.

There are lots of people willing to go to great lengths to defend Convention.  I am not interested in Convention.  I was sucker-punched by Convention once, as a child, when it told me to do as I was told, even if it seemed odd or strange or painful.  And yes, Convention said, Priest’s are adults.

Keep your Convention.  Here, take mine; it’s never done me any favors.  I have lots of friends who’ll gladly off theirs.

I just want what Convention thinks it is.  What I want is quiet, firm, loyal, blind, and the most powerful tenet of American Citizenship.  I want my Rights.  I don’t want better or different or bigger or smaller.  I just want my equal rights. And if there are fellow American Citizens that are afforded rights which are different than mine, then the Declaration of Independence is a lie from the very beginning.  We’re not all created equal.

And if the foundation upon which all our rights are built upon is fundamentally a lie, then not one American Citizen has a right to anything.

Tell that to Convention.