Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Dawning of the Age of Aquarius

My local poli-blog, Horse's Ass, had an interesting post. Jon DeVore mentioned that according to one astrologer, at 7:25am on Feb. 14th, the Age of Aquarius will begin.

As you can see to my blog's left, I have included a short video snippet of the musical 'Hair' that features the song 'Age of Aquarius'. Needless to say, this song has been a favorite of mine for a long, long time.

I do prefer the Fifth Dimension version with a nice transition to 'Let the Sun Shine In' but the musical itself is the reason I love the song.

According to Wikipedia, this date and time is just when the astronomic events mentioned in the song occur, not necessarily when the actual age begins.

"When the Moon is in the Seventh House and Jupiter's aligned with Mars.
And Peace will guide the Planets, and Love will steer the Stars."

I'm not an astrologer so I can't claim any grand esoteric knowledge of this but everything needs a birthday so I'm giving the Age of Aquarius this one.

Any objections?

So Mote It Be,
David Aquarius

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

An Infection Breeds in America

(this was previously posted as a diary on the Daily Kos)

In the past three weeks, we’ve been hammered by pundits and prophets, denizens of marbled hallways and plush leather chairs. We’ve seen both courage and cowardice by those we’ve sent to represent us in the halls of power. At any other time, the partisan games of one-upmanship would be tolerable but there comes a time when such games are more of a hindrance than help

We, the people, ask little of our leaders. We expect them to conform to certain standards and ethics but give them lots of deference. We can tolerate a lot, overlook many transgressions and foibles but we always expect the power to come on when we want it, the potholes to be fixed eventually, and the pizza to be delivered on time.

Those expectations are gone. This economic situation is dire, perhaps worse than any we have known. We speak of the Great Depression, but it is nearly a century distant. But that was then, this is now. America was very different then than it is today. America has a problem. It is infected.

Today, we have the advantage of internet technology to flash news instantaneously from Congress to Wall Street to the kitchen. But that only delivers the news; in many cases this technology set the stage for bigger schemes, more ingenious larceny, or massive global obfuscation. Like before, abject greed and corporate irresponsibility has the lion’s share of blame for this recession. And within our halls of power, there is an ally to those moneyed interests. The Republican Party, the supposed party of Lincoln, is closely tied to the same corporate mountebanks that brought this country so close to the edge of the precipice. To say they are allied is to underestimate their relationship for it is more akin to a marriage than a business arrangement.

The modern Republican Party cannot see past its corporate masters. They don’t see the people of Main Street, the folks who try to work every day to just get by. Those normal people are invisible to the GOP. The powerbrokers at the GOP can only see those who can give a financial boost to the Party, the lowest rung on the ladder of success in their view are the business owners, not the workers.

To be sure, the modern Republican Party has nothing but distain and hatred for all things labor. They despise any rule or legislation that favors the working person. In their world, we would all be working for the bare minimum at the maximum number of hours including our children and our elderly. This dream of theirs harkens back to a time long ago when 16-hour shifts at 2 dollars a day were considered good wages.

This is not bipartisanship. This is setting the foundations for a coup d'├ętat. The GOP is so angry at the outcome of the November elections that they will sacrifice the American economy to occupy the halls of power once again. They were able to bamboozle the voters in 2000 and 2004. They got an imbecile elected president and took control of both the Senate and the House. But they couldn’t hold on to that power. The most significant reason that cut them loose from the dock and sent them adrift was their unabashed greed. Their greed cost Tom Delay his seat in the House. Their greed sent Duke Cunningham and Jeff Skilling to jail. Their greed folded the economy like a bad suit. Their greed sent Barack Obama to the White House.

America is better than greed. We’ve conquered fear and hatred many times throughout our history. We’ve been down this road before and have to get back on track if we wish to see sunlight at the end of this dark tunnel. To do this we have to remove the cause of our blight. Like a gangrenous limb, we have to remove it to save the whole. The GOP is gangrenous. They no longer serve any useful purpose; in fact, they are infecting the body American by their presence. We, as a people, have to make a stark and unpleasant choice: to allow the Republicans to remain and suffer the pain and anguish of an economic death or remove the offending organ and save the country for our descendants?

The choice is obvious, but the remedy is not. President Obama’s words of bipartisanship only serve to delay the inevitable. There is no rehabilitation of the GOP. A once proud Party is now a mere shell of itself, beholden to the corporate icons and moneyed interests that loom large over this economic collapse. The Republicans are not unlike the Gollum of Tolkien’s tale, so obsessed with the One Ring that it lost all humanity with nothing left but anger and deceit.

President Obama must take the case to the American people. He should hold up the GOP to the scorn of those who have been harmed the most by this recession. Those who are working to reverse this downturn should give this bad economy a face, a Republican face. Make those responsible for this disaster wear the Scarlet Letter. Frame the discussion, take to the airwaves and publications with the message of hope for the recovery and blame for the greed and avarice of the last eight years.

Make them pay for what they did to this country. Perhaps from the bones of a shamed and desolate GOP, there will come a more responsible and truly conservative party. To paraphrase an old saying: to save the party, we must destroy it.

So Mote It Be,
David A.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Go it alone

There come a time when all roads lead out of town. When all talk is done and all things have been said. There comes a time when there is no safe refuge, no safe harbor to wait out the coming storm.

That time is now.

We tried it their way and lost. Lost big. They want to keep playing the same number on the same wheel but we have to cut our losses and move on. The Republicans, despite losing two elections and all of their base, still cling to the same old moves, the same disastrous policies that caused this catastrophe. They aren't stupid, they're delusional. They can't accept the fact that the country holds them responsible for this mess, that the people aren't blaming Bill Clinton like they want. They try and try to hold tight to that flimsy toilet paper ideology even as it gets pissed on by every economist of merit in the country.

President Obama made some progressives angry for reaching out to the GOP to craft a bill that's both effective and bipartisan. In the House, he gave up a lot and got handed back his lunch. No Republican voted for the bill. In the Senate, he's gone so far into the whole 'bipartisan' myth that he's heading into ineffective. What's more important, any bill or the right bill?

In return for offering his hand in cooperation, the Republicans filled it full of shit. They are so consumed by the election of Barack Obama, an African-American who has the real chance of becoming one of the greatest presidents in history, that they will allow the American economy and the people they represent swirl down the drain like a cold turd.

How's that for the Party of Patriots? They wave the flag then use it to blow their nose.

Obama has to do the unthinkable. He has to tell the American people that the Republican Party is not helping him. He has to put that bully pulpit to good use and make the GOP pay for its partisanship. The Dems need to grow a spine (as if that has any chance of happening) and hold their own membership together and forget the Repugs. Keep the Blue Dogs in line and shore up support with the progressives. If any Repugs get an earful back home, let them into the room but with a commitment to vote yes when all is said and done.

Play hard ball and you'll win. The rules have changed and the stakes are high. The country's got your back. This is no time to be Mr. Nice Guy.

So Mote It Be,
David A.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Got your back, Spocko!

The Vulcan is at it again!

Over at Spocko's Brain, the intrepid Vulcan is taking on the Crap Demon again. A couple of years ago, he took on the piss and vile that is the morning show on San Francisco's KSFO.

Officer Vic making a point.

The hosts of that waste of radio waves are especially cruel and vile right wing trash. They tried and almost succeeded in taking Spocko off the 'Net. His ISP at the time was cowed into suspending his site by Disney, which owned KSFO. In a clear violation of the Fair Use provision of the Copyright laws.

The EFF got his back then, we should be there for him now.

Update: His email to Molly Peck, National Advertising Manager, Chevrolet may have been screened so look up Ms. Peck in Google and promote it. That way she'll see it when she googles her name. Try every avenue you can think of to bring this to light.

So Mote It Be,
David A.

Sunday Morning Cuppa Joe

Just got up and shit, getting old sucks. Aches and pains, bad foots and back, throat feels like I half swallowed a dozen oysters. Crap!

Sunday used to be fun. Back in the day, my grandpa would take my next younger brother, Neil and I to a little cafe on Main St. for breakfast. He alternated weekends with my sisters. We would order whatever we wanted as long as we ate it. I would get french toast, french fries and a vanilla shake, my brother would order french fries and a bowl of chili with a chocolate shake. These weren't the wimpy, fake milk bullshit shakes you get at McDonald's but the home blended kind made from scoops of ice fucking CREAM. They would pour it into those special glasses with whipped cream and a cherry and give you the extra still in the metal mixing cup.

Damn, ain't had one of those in years. Probably give me gas.

As we scarfed our meal, Grandpa would give us a quarter for the jukebox. Back in 1969, it was good for three songs. The deal was that we would have to play 'G8' and pick two others we wanted. I have a disagreement with my brother as what song that was. I know it was by Engelbert Humperdinck but the song is in dispute. I think is was either "Am I That Easy to Forget" or "Release Me". Neil says it may have been Tom Jones and the song was "Delilah". Although that song's more popular, I know that my memory is correct.

What were we talking about? Oh Yeah!

Grandpa passed away in 1971. Good man who loved his grandkids, all 8 of them. You see, Grandpa liked to drink a few beers with his buddies on Saturday night. Sometimes quite a few. Dad would get a call from the bar to come and take him home. On Sunday morning, he would show up, take either the boys or the girls in tow and head out to the Diner. I remember Mom always in a piss-poor mood when we left.

Years later, long after he had died, she told us Grandpa was hung over and needed something to eat, so he just took us with him. But I don't think it was just convenience that brought us along. Mom wasn't there as we ate. Grandpa would talk to us, ask us questions, brag to the waitress about what we were doing. We have a photo from 1968 that shows Grandpa napping on the couch with my sister curled up next to him fast asleep. She still remembers that he wore a cologne that was all his, that put her at ease. Mom says he was just passed out and it was probably the beer coming out of his pores, covered up in Old Spice.

She's mellowed in her opinion of Grandpa over the years. She's come to respect the way we 'kids' think of him and what he meant to us. She saw him through the eyes of an adult, a person who could see the faults and flaws without the innocence of youth. The loving eyes of a child can over look the dark realities of adulthood. That isn't necessarily a good thing. But in the context of this situation, it salvages a memory of a man who worked hard for a lot of years with little to show for it, other than a loving family. He didn't jump into the bottle because of despair but of loneliness. He needed his buddies at the bar for companionship. Who are we to judge that?

My dad, who moonlighted as barkeep at that tavern for extra money, said that every bar stool tenant there knew about us kids. All the 'Norms' and 'Cliffs' knew who we were, what baseball team we played on, who got the awards in school; everything about us. All that came from my Grandpa. When I was 10, he gave me a bike for my birthday. He said that he just happened to put a dollar on the punchboard game and he won the bike. He told me: "Didn't know what to do with the damn thing so I guess you can have it." A few years ago, Mom told me that he spent all night at that game until he won the bike.

If we don't allow for mistakes, allow for some human failing, we may end up slighting the memories of those who were important to us. When we talk about Grandpa now, Mom always says; "He really loved you kids." forgetting the way she felt about him back then. Selective memory can be a good thing, I guess.

We tend to be too judgmental, too strict in our personal dogma. If we don't allow some fresh air into the way we think, our standards will grow cold and rigid, like a petrified tree. We didn't have that as kids but some of us have it as grown-ups. I fear that I've gotten that way in my adultery too.

So today, I'm going to a little diner near my apartment and order french fries, french toast and a vanilla milkshake.

Happy Sunday, Grandpa.

So Mote It Be,
David A.