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political roundup

i'm a bit pressed for time today, so sit down, strap in, shut up, and prepare yourself for the high-octane madness that is today's political roundup--complete with a little window decal of yours truly relieving himself on a donkey.

well, there's always iraq

no, that intense burst of heat you feel is not the massive solar flare hurtling towards earth, it's the economy, stupid, and it's just unleashed a scorched-earth policy on the field of ought-four democratic hopefuls. they'd better be hopeful that their media comrades like slate's john maynard keynes, er, i mean, daniel gross, can do a better job of damage control than this:

It would be hard for the economy not to surge when you consider how much money the administration has poured into it in the form of tax cuts and government spending.

that's sort of the point, dan. in the days of the bush budget battle, the president argued that the faltering, post 9/11 economy needed a kick-start. a boost. a shot of nitrous, if you will. that's what he delivered, primarily in the form of "draconian" tax cuts. and for months after that, we heard liberal pundits like gross, democratic politicians, and, later, presidential hopefuls demanding to know why the predicted effect had never materialized. (a democratic debate drinking game limited to a single sip every time the word "failed" is uttered in conjunction with the president's economic policies will have you three sheets to the wind in the first five minutes.) well, here it is.

"but can he sustain the growth!?"

he doesn't have to. he just needs to stay the hell out of the way. what, capitalism flourishing in a low-tax, low-government-intervention environment? whoda thunk it.

i guess i'll have to stop ignoring howard dean

well, it's official. howard dean is fo' rizzle, or so sayeth the afl-cio, and believe you me, when it comes to democratic presidential candidates, they would know. that horrible crashing sound you hear isn't the massive solar flare slamming into the ozone, it's the aspirations of dick gephardt, the only democrat who had anything approaching a shot at defeating bush, being dashed on the rocks below.

personally, i'm delighted. howard dean was, is, and ever shall be a kook. he's not kucinich kooky, but he's a kook nevertheless. middle america doesn't trust him and never will because they can't figure out what he's so ticked off about. according to the story, dean's supporters are no longer limited to "limousine liberals, antiwar activists, and tech-savvy young people." so throw in the unions and, eventually, the aarp and dean will get what al gore got--in fact, he'll get less, because bush is still highly rated for a president at this stage of his first term. the bottom line is that dean can't take votes from bush, and he needs quite a few bush votes to win.

do they sell it in cans labeled "tuna safe"?

i sense a great disturbance in the force, as if millions of voices cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. but no, it's not from the massive solar flare...uh...slamming into earth...or something. it's from japanese dolphin killers wreaking bloody havoc on our cuddly aquatic friends. a group calling itself the sea shepherd conservation society released a video of japanese fishermen conducting a dolphin hunt using 400 year old methods. the report itself calls the hunt a "massacre," btw. nope, no agenda there. just dispassionate, objective journalism.

how does the "massacre" work? basically, a bunch of guys with long knives splash on top of the water, and when the hyper-intelligent, super-brilliant, smarter-than-we-are dolphins come to see what's up, they're turned into chop saki. and this has been going on for nearly half a millennium. those dolphins are so darned clever.

but however cuddly and clever they may be, they are not endangered, their "massacre" is conducted in accordance with japanese law, and it's part of a centuries-old cultural tradition (culture being that which many of you liberals found curiously mitigating in the massacre of three-thousand+ americans not so very long ago...) but, of course, the animal rights groups are hopping mad. i'll assume for the hell of it that the video is legit: so what?

animal rights activists believe that all life is sacred. there is no hierarchy of existence, no great chain of being. to them, a daisy is a puppy is a dolphin is a child. but for every dolphin we kill, there's an albacore holocaust. so why aren't the sea shepherds castigating charlie the tuna into the next joe camel? simple: tuna aren't cute. to these activists, the worth of a tuna and dolphin are both infinite (i got into it with one not long ago who refused to draw a distinction between the life of a squirrel and the life of a human being) so their tactics aren't hypocritical as much as they're just plain sleazy: a tuna doesn't look any better on a poster than a cow does, so they stick to dolphins and veal, er, calves. mmm...calves.

it's much easier to make one's argument resonate when one is arguing on behalf of something that looks good in stuffed-animal form.

i suppose some of you think i'm now obligated to make a moral case for dolphin-killing per se. of course, if you think that, odds are that you also think that no matter how much an unborn child looks, acts, and possibly thinks like a human being, we still have the right to arbitrarily exterminate it. so i'll simply point out that, by your own logic, the assumption that animals are indeed a lower form of life--little more than irrational beasts who are slaves to their instincts as most cultures throughout most of history have thought them to be, and as 400 years of the dopiest executions i've ever heard of goes a long way towards proving--is all we need to kill them. to that i would add that the morality in killing a dolphin or any other animal is found not in what it does to them, but in what it does to us. are we debasing ourselves by such an act? are we acting out of bloodlust, for the mere perverse thrill of inflicting pain? wanton acts of cruelty are immoral regardless of how they are manifested. the japanese haven't been killing dolphins for four hundred years for giggles, you know. these days, they're doing it for profit, so when they say that the killings are conducted as humanely as possible, i believe them. the dolphins aren't anesthetized ('course, neither is an unborn child) but time is money and i'm betting the hunters aren't inclined to deal with thrashing, wounded dolphins if they don't need to.

locdog will take his sashimi style



next they'll have him sacrificing goats in the oval office

During Iran-Contra Scandal --


Reagan and Nancy sit in front of their breakfast. They can't eat. Can't drink. They're numb.

REAGAN: It's Armageddon... that's what it is. Armageddon. The Leader from the West will be revealed as the anti-Christ, and then God will strike him down. That's me. I am the anti-Christ.

NANCY: No, Ronnie...

REAGAN (overriding): And the Lord will strike down all of civilization, in order to make way for the new order... a new Heaven and a new Earth...

Nancy reaches out, grabs his hand, strongly.

NANCY: Hold on. You've got to hold on, Ronnie.

Reagan's eyes are filling with tears. He can't help it. He's crumbling.

REAGAN: I saved 77 lives in 7 years, Nancy... But I couldn't save those people in Lebanon.

Nancy gets up, puts her arms around him. She rocks him slowly, silently, back and forth.

and if you liked that, you're gonna love this:

During a scene in the film which his wife pleads with him to help people battling AIDS, Reagan says resolutely, "They that live in sin shall die in sin" and refuses to discuss the issue further.


where do i begin? those quotes are from CBS' upcoming assassination attempt/movie of the week, in case you weren't aware. it's too monday for me to write creatively, so i think i'll just give a laundry list of ways in which the above sucks.

1. as an american, i find it disgraceful to see the name of a living president suffering from one of the most dehumanizing forms of illness imaginable drug through the mud based on nothing more than idle gossip and the willingness of liberals to stoop to any level to bash conservative icons. with limbaugh, they excuse their cruelty by pretending it's about hypocrisy. i wonder how they'll sugarcoat their sadism this time. funny how the self-proclaimed arbiters of tolerance can always be found chucking the heaviest, pointiest stones.

2. as a republican, it never ceases to amaze me how contemptuous liberals are of ronald reagan. it's like they've got some special circle of hell staked out just for him. their hatred of bush is a sight to behold--and believe me, i get a warm fuzzy every time i see the compassionate howard dean slobbering all over himself with rage--but dubya is a gnat to the gipper's albatros, if this slam-fest is any indication. if i had a nickle for every time i've heard "get over it!" in regards to clinton, i could probably fund all of kucinich's wacked-out social programs. get over it, indeed. at least oliver stone watied until nixon was dead.

3. as a Christian, i'm genuinely baffled by the hellfire they've got spewing from reagan's mouth. folks, this is how david koresh thought. it's not how ronald reagan thought, and it's definitely not how most evangelical Christians think.

"they that live in sin shall die in sin..."

"i am the anti-christ..."

so, is this how hollywood hacks think Christians talk? guess i shouldn't be all that surprised: it would explain why we're invariably cast as hitlerian villains in all of their movies. but the feeling is mutual, for, according to page 16 of the script, hollywood was founded by "Jews and queers" and bequeathed to "communists and drug addicts."

anyway, the obvious implication is that reagan's conservative Christian beliefs motivated him to shroud AIDS in silence, thus sentencing millions of american citizens to death. so let's be crystal clear, the CBS television network (and they should most definitely be held responsible) is calling ronald reagan a mass murderer, and, by extension, conservative Christians everywhere. i understand that some Christians believe AIDS is a judgment for sin (where's the proof reagan did?), but so is every other disease. the world wouldn't have any sickness, according to the Bible, had it not been for sin. in that sense, a Christian has no more right to refuse treatment to an AIDS patient than a cancer patient or heart disease patient. the Bible says that the wages of sin is death, meaning that everyone of us carries a death sentence for the sins we've committed. because of that in part, i've spoken out against Christians who advance the God-hates-fags line whenever the opportunity has presented itself. (the other part is that these bigots are more anti-christ than ronald reagan was on his worst day.) but we're talking about a small minority of kooks--not at all the typical sample they're made out to be, thank God, and not at all presidents of the united states.

locdog wonders if they'll mention the record economic recovery or victory in the cold war