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The election was successful, but the patient died… 31 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

Earlier, I linked to and snipped from The Hill article referenced in this CJR post

A story in The Hill a few weeks ago, which we reported on, offered some grim comments from members of the Senate about prospects for health reform that have reverberated.

Yes indeedy… they were grim…. the gist, health care, universal, comprehensive, whatever the slapped on adjective, was great to RUN ON, but listen up honey chile! Congress has better things to do than that, we are the big boys and girls, and anyway, war carousing will be very time consuming.

DId I say carousing? I am sure (aren’t you?) they meant “ending the war”, or whatever is the term of art…

hmm it seems, I learn from CJR, little Ezra Klein of that radical hang out, The American Prospect, commented on the senators’ comments and later that day ran two follow-up clarifications, I did not have the pleasure then… sounds to me like he diapered the Really Big Boyz…

Rockefeller had originally said: “We all know there is not enough money to do all this stuff. What they are doing is…laying out their ambitions.” Baucus had told The Hill that the groundwork for reform was being laid through hearings, but he projected an uphill battle ahead. “If they try to solve all the problems, it’s going to be difficult.”

Given space and time for “clarification” – and a reminder no doubt from aides of what is needed to rise to the occasion, why, those Really Big Boyz rose to the occasion and slathered Ezra and his readers.. they’d do their very, very bluest, bestest best and hearings would b held.

Baucus’s aide, meanwhile, told Klein that the senator was going to lay the groundwork to start a major discussion on reform in 2009, holding hearings and hosting a great deal of discussion so members of the finance committee and congress “more generally can dig into both the problems and the possible solutions.” We still think reporters should be wary, and what Baucus’s aide said still sounds like a lot of high-sounding words.

Klein’s interpretation of Baucus’s statement was more generous. He told his readers that the senator, who happens to chair the key Senate Finance Committee, is going to spend a lot of time on hearings, coalition building, and public events that signal his committee’s readiness to take up health care reform. “It’s not the sort of thing you do if you don’t believe it will happen,” Klein said.

Baby boy… find a mothering breast (or a sugar tit, he won’t notice the difference) and hang on for dear life. Avoid looking all things squarely in the face and nestle deep in the smothering fold.

Do I sound cynical and dismissive? You bet.

And, they’re handing their [so hated] she-devil nemesis the biggest “I told you so” I have seen in decades.

BTW, none of the above required the Japanese binoculars sharp enough to see fleas on dogs at a mile remove…

This is not an endorsement of Hillary, she would do no differently.


UPDATE, 2:42 pm

This was at the end of the last thread, it seems Barbara Boxer (tickle those libs!) gave the Democratic Response to Bush


link to Boxer’s address.

“Right now, many of our states, including my home state, are leading. They have the will. Our mayors are leading. They have the will. Religious leaders have urged us to act now as well. They reminded me of a wonderful quote that motivates me to work as hard as I can for as long as it takes to responsibly address global warming. These words stay with me: ‘When God created the first man, he took him around to all the trees in the Garden of Eden and said to him “see my handiwork, how beautiful and choice they are. Be careful not to ruin and destroy my world, for if you do ruin it, there is no one to repair it after you.”‘

“I truly hope that you will support our efforts on the Senate floor. Please join our fight, and thanks for listening.”


I was not going to add this to my post, but as they seem to be lathering their spit balls with Holy Water.. why should I restrain and refrain?

from the Mike Allen Politico email

SCOOP, from the Newsweek closing tonight – ‘His Mobile Ministry: Politicians have long sought the counsel of faith leaders. Obama’s got 100 dialing in to pray for him,’ By Lisa Miller: ‘The Houston mega-pastor Kirbyjon Caldwell — who presided over Jenna Bush’s wedding last month and has offered spiritual counsel to her father-is a Christian VIP, so busy that his cell phone voicemail says, ‘Do not leave messages here.’ But on Friday mornings, whether he’s at church, in the car or on the golf course, Caldwell tries to dial into a certain high-level conference call. At 9:30 EST, a group of religious leaders gathers ‘telephonically,’ as Caldwell puts it; for 15 minutes, they pray for Sen. Barack Obama.’

We are so blessed.


Just a thread………… 29 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

New Orleans……………

I am laughing that the threme of this election, at least the last several months, most assuredly is: denounce, deny, reject, repudiate, renounce… and what else? Oh yes: EJECT.

I have no idea what is coming but no doubt we follow the bouncing ball down the street … If I thought any of the drool and spit from the religious pulpits, right – left – center – as well as off the page!, would be avoided/not embraced/not used next go round, I’d be thankful.

That won’t be happening.


it’s a pathetic house here… 28 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

Photo source

I am reduced to pawing the TV screen when there is an ad for cat food. There was one this morning with 3 pretty standard issue American short hairs…

Anyway… back to the moment at hand… Boston.com takes a look at the promise, offer, whatever it is, election slobber, from Camp Obama to ‘redraw the map’. Some changes can be made – no doubt. And I have long argued that if the Democrats gave two hoots about people they’d go more places, talk to more people. If you cannot look people in the eye and shake their hand (what too many of the Democrats cannot do), ask to hear what they’d like to tell you – well then, you cannot build the popular vote.

Howard has long promised his “50 State Strategy”… I hear burbles, but have no idea if truly implemented…

Usual caveat, FWIW, NTIM… 😉

Coo coo 27 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, Culture of Death, DC Politics, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

It moved from the silly season to coo coo days.

Have a thread……………….

Outward bound… 26 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in Divertissements, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

Unfurled solar assay – Phoenix – Mars – NYT

[A]t 9:53 p.m., there were more cheers as confirmation came that one more critical event, the unfolding of the solar arrays, had occurred without problem. And then the first pictures arrived: black-and-white images of the solar panels, of one of the lander’s footpads and of surrounding terrain, showing the polygonal fractures caused by repeated expansion and contraction of the underground ice.

The next few days will be spent checking the condition of the spacecraft. Then it will begin the first up-close investigation of Mars’s northern polar region. Instruments on the spacecraft include a small oven that will heat the scooped-up dirt and ice to 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit. Analyzing the vapors will provide information on the minerals, and that will, in turn, provide clues about whether the ice ever melted and whether this region was habitable. The mission is to last three months, with the possibility of a two-month extension.

“We see Phoenix as a stepping stone to future investigations of Mars,” Dr. Smith said. ::snip::


Madman posted this near the end of the last thread… and it fits in here…

A Kunstlerian take on Memorial Day:

I had a discussion with one guy at a Sunday night party about the prospects for hydrogen-powered cars. We rehearsed the usual reasons why such a system was unlikely to get up-and-running — and then he said, “…but what if we took all the money from the war and put it into something like the space program and… they came up with some way to make it happen…!”

This is certainly the golden heart of the great wish out there, as the empire of Happy Motoring begins to run down on $4 gasoline. It seems inconceivable that a society so bold as to put men on the moon (fer crissake) can’t overcome such a prosaic problem as finding something other than oil byproducts to run our cars on.

From this holy font all cognitive dissonance flows.

It seems inconceivable, but it begins to look like that’s the way it really is, and we just can’t accept it.

Of course, one of the reasons that Americans are so anxious to get away on a holiday weekend from the places where they live is because we did such a perfect job the past fifty years turning our home-places into utterly unrewarding, graceless nowheres, where the private realm of the beige houses is saturated in monotony, and the public realm has been reduced to the berm between the WalMart and the strip mall. Now, we barely have the gasoline to run all this stuff, let alone escape from it for a weekend.


This too from the last thread, languished in moderation… fits in here…


Showdown in Dallas: ExxonMobil faces shareholder revolt

A showdown looms at the company’s annual shareholders meeting Wednesday in Dallas, Texas, with a series of proposals aimed at changing ExxonMobil’s corporate structure and pushing the company toward more environmentally friendly energy sources.

While activist shareholder resolutions are not uncommon, the move at ExxonMobil is unusual in that it has support from major institutional investors as well as the storied Rockefeller family, whose ancestor John D. Rockefeller created Standard Oil, the main forerunner of the current company.

Fred and Wilma get a little dabba do time in Brussels:

Six Greenpeace activists dressed as cavemen and travelling in a Flintstones-style vehicle were detained along with three others for public order offences, police said.

A stone tablet accusing car lobbyists of driving climate change was confiscated before it could be delivered to lawmakers, a Greenpeace spokeswoman said.

Photos of zero-emission vehicle and cave posse here.

Why observe memorial day now… 25 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

Jordanian demonstration against the Lebanon war, casualty at Cana 2006

I never have in the past.

But, there’s a thread.


Gas 23 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

Indonesian taxi drivers face higher fuel costs after the government announced that heavily subsidised prices would have to rise in response to soaring oil prices. [AP via BBC]

I was wandering thru the BBC pics… and this taxi had some moxie. Attitude… animation. And, you know, gas… gas … gas.

San Francisco officially over $4



For some reason this photo made me laugh… 23 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, Cuba, DC Politics, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, South America, Venezuela - Chavez, Viva La Revolucion!, WAR!.

Supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama wait before a town hall meeting at the B’Nai Tora Congregation in Boca Raton, Florida, May 22, 2008. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

Just for context, a report on his appearance before the B’nai Tora, in the Palm Beach Post.

And… Obama’s remarks ”as prepared” for the Cubans, the Cuban American National Foundation… Renewing US Leadership in the Americas

Since the Bush Administration launched a misguided war in Iraq, its policy in the Americas has been negligent toward our friends, ineffective with our adversaries, disinterested in the challenges that matter in peoples’ lives, and incapable of advancing our interests in the region.

No wonder, then, that demagogues like Hugo Chavez have stepped into this vacuum. His predictable yet perilous mix of anti-American rhetoric, authoritarian government, and checkbook diplomacy offers the same false promise as the tried and failed ideologies of the past. But the United States is so alienated from the rest of the Americas that this stale vision has gone unchallenged, and has even made inroads from Bolivia to Nicaragua. And Chavez and his allies are not the only ones filling the vacuum. While the United States fails to address the changing realities in the Americas, others from Europe and Asia – notably China – have stepped up their own engagement. Iran has drawn closer to Venezuela, and just the other day Tehran and Caracas launched a joint bank with their windfall oil profits.

It’s still Norte as Daddy… I cannot wait to hear what Chavez has to say to President Obama OR McCain. At least I will be amused.

Catch this…

I will maintain the embargo. It provides us with the leverage to present the regime with a clear choice: if you take significant steps toward democracy, beginning with the freeing of all political prisoners, we will take steps to begin normalizing relations. That’s the way to bring about real change in Cuba – through strong, smart and principled diplomacy.

And this…

And we know that freedom across our hemisphere must go beyond elections. In Venezuela, Hugo Chavez is a democratically elected leader. But we also know that he does not govern democratically. He talks of the people, but his actions just serve his own power. Yet the Bush Administration’s blustery condemnations and clumsy attempts to undermine Chavez have only strengthened his hand.

He goes on and on… he gets to Haiti, to Colombia, Mexico, the Drug war, lards the speech with talk of the poor (always with us: we never free them, we make certain)… he even quotes Jose Marti Waging democracy abroad is nothing new. It’s just the way it is.

Jesus of the Americas. We are so blessed.

Jose Marti once wrote. “It is not enough to come to the defense of freedom with epic and intermittent efforts when it is threatened at moments that appear critical. Every moment is critical for the defense of freedom.”

Every moment is critical. And this must be our moment. Freedom. Opportunity. Dignity. These are not just the values of the United States – they are the values of the Americas. They were the cause of Washington’s infantry and Bolivar’s cavalry; of Marti’s pen and Hidalgo’s church bells.

That legacy is our inheritance. That must be our cause. And now must be the time that we turn the page to a new chapter in the story of the Americas.


land’s end…………. 22 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in California / Pacific Coast, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

San Joaquin Delta.. downloaded years ago, and I neglected to note much other info about the photograph…

A couple of years ago I thought i might try to do something about our cyclical torment, water, rain, lack of rain, diversion of water resources (and subsequent loss of natural populations of fish and shellfish) for sprawl/habitation and farming/ag business…falling water tables, then the fire and devastation, mudslide, landslide, desert winds …. all of this up against the Pacific Ocean, the land pock marked with millions of little trapped bodies of water, home pools. Now one in 200 of those homes in foreclosure, an enforced death of the outer suburbs… and those little bodies of water stagnant, breeding mosquitos, madly, speedily…

But it was too big… I gathered the photos and images.. and let it go. It comes around every year……… right as rain.


UPDATE, 5:07 am Friday….

Wanted to pull up this comment by lucid


Have you guys ever restrung a 36 year old guitar? The strings slide into the saddles on the bridge – and there are so many ridges in the saddles, that you have to pick the ridge – the sweet one – the one that won’t break a string at a show, and the one where the string width is just right. And the nut, well, it’s all worn to shit, and despite the hours you’ve spent adjusting the height of the saddles to accommodate, you’ve still got fret buzz… but because this instrument is so beautiful and plays so well, you stick a piece of paper in the nut to make it play better, despite the fact that it will dampen the sustain on an open chord. And the neck – well hell, some frets on the high E don’t bend as well as you’d like…

It sounds like time for a new guitar. And I have better guitars than that, in every way…

But I don’t have another guitar that feels like that. I don’t have another guitar that is so true.

I know I’m all about the losing of the sentimentality, but there is something converse I’m saying in this.

The blood sweat and tears are not nothing.

The new world is exemplified by the care of a luthier for the instrument that can still feel true 36 years later, or more.

Tulare County Sequoia groveThe new world is exemplified by people who see history not as the past, but as the idea that 40 years from now, something they did will inspire someone to do something else.

And it will be something just or beautiful.

It could be sitting in a redwood like Julia Butterfly Hill, or picketing Fort Benning like Father Berrigan. It could be discovering the cure to cancer in the face of a medical establishment bound to silence you, or it could be a song that brings one individual, at one moment in their life, to a place too beautiful for words.

And whenever I string that guitar, with the care, the concentration, the love, I think of that possibility. I think of the ‘new world’, a world I hope I could maybe inspire 40 years down the road from some song I play on my newly strung 36 year old guitar.

From land’s end…………., 2008/05/23 at 1:28 AM

[Tulare County Sequoia grove, Sequoia National Park]

Silly season……….. 21 May 2008

Posted by marisacat in Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

it’s oozing out all over the place… 😉