Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Ghost Adventures Part One

           My grandson roped me into watching Ghost Adventures which is kind of a low budget, semi-retarded Ghosthunters with a dash of roid rage. Now you may think that television could not get any more moronic than Ghosthunter. But you would be wrong.  My impression is that the lead paranormal investigator Zak needs to spend a little more time in the library and a little less in the gym. A couple of acting classes wouldn't hurt either. Maybe it's some kind of joke. It is just that lame.
          Normally, I don't find this kind of stuff too interesting  unless it's local but my grandson was so excited he insisted we watch it. Now, I don't believe in ghosts and he knows it. Maybe he was anxious to have Zak and his buddies prove me wrong or, more likely, my grandson and his friends were excited about an episode dealing with mass slaughter and a haunted fort. He was so excited he was practically shaking. It would be kind of neat to feel like that again. My little brother and I shared a room and we'd get all worked up hearing strange noises coming from the basement, particularly after watching something like The Curse of Frankenstein. We'd get so scared we felt duty bound to do our own paranormal investigating. So we'd sneak downstairs until we got to the landing above the rec room, my brothe would flickon the light and at the same time I'd leap down the stairs yelling "hi yaah!" and waving my scout knife. Good thing Dad wasn't coming through the garage door. He would have lost a nut. We weren't fucking around.
          What's the harm in sharing a little critical thinking with the lad? Eight isn't too young to develop a little skepticism. Besides, he values my opinion. He's about the only one. I don't want him to spend the rest of his life chasing things that don't exist. Like Zak.
        Part two later.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

It's a White Thing

You wouldn't understand. Wrong camera angle for a frog snuff film. Ha! Ha! mainstream media. Fakeout. The lesson is that you can't believe anything Glenn Beck shows or tells you. But I knew that.

Coming up: Glenn uses a real baby and scalding hot bathwater to explain bank bailouts.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Everybody Needs a Cause

I got mine. Bumper stickers and a tee shirt, too. Wonder why my party of stupidheads didn't frame the argument this way from the start. Everyone knows what it is, how it works and by gosh, it's pretty popular. Why get the health insurers involved at all? We could always negotiate down. I learned that in labor negotiations. A golden opportunity missed. So I've tried to get this letter published twice now and sadly, I'm reduced to running it here. The Man is keeping me down (or ignoring me). Here it is:
Medicare needs to be part of the health care reform debate. As it stands now, the government is responsible for insuring the health of the elderly and disabled, those who are most likely to need long term extensive care, and private insurers get everybody else, the young and healthy where a profit can be made. This is unsustainable in the long run. It is unfair to the working taxpayer and employers who are on the hook for increasing premiums to fund privately insured health care and increasing taxes to fund Medicare. It is unfair to our seniors who are facing reduced Medicare coverage because the program is running out of money. As a society, we have made a commitment to our senior and disabled citizens to provide them with affordable health care. One way to save this program and provide the best care for the most people is to open up Medicare so that all American citizens are eligible to participate. Opening up the risk pool to include the young and working taxpayers would go far to stabilize Medicare's long term prospects.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Was God Ever a Real Person?

That came out of the blue and stopped me in my tracks, danger signs flashing in front of my eyes. This was asked by my grandson as he and I were walking up the beach. He's a bright, inquisitive, sensitive boy with a big heart. But he keeps asking me shit that I can't answer. I don't know how I became the go-to guy for matters supernatural and theological. I suppose it's because I temporarily fixed his Nintendo DS. I know in the world of avuncular grandfathering, I'm supposed to have this all figured out and, with a chuckle and a twinkle in my eye, tell him exactly how it is. Put his mind at ease so that he knows there is some sense in the universe and everything is as it should be. I don't have the heart to tell him that the older I get, the more confused I am and less and less of it makes any sense. Add that to the fact that I have no idea what sort of religious training, if any, his parents have given him and I found myself in quite a pickle. So I did the only thing I could think of - I channeled Sister Mary Joseph and what I could remember of the Baltimore cathechism.
"Well, in the Catholic tradition, Jesus, as one of the three parts of one god (look, I didn't think this stuff up by myself), was born a man so I suppose you could say that God was a person, at one time."
He looks up at me exasperated: "No, Jesus was the son of God."
"Well, yeah, but..." and at that point the spirit of Sister Mary Joseph left me, metaphysically rulerless and unable to drive my point home."

So we walk along a bit in blessed silence and he comes up with this:
"You know, the Bible is always right"
This sets me off. No grandson of mine is going to be a creationist, even if I have to kidnap him and send him to Camp Quest.
"No, it isn't. Lots of stuff is wrong. Nobody got swallowed by a whale, there was no worldwide flood and the earth wasn't created in six days."
That does not convince him. This does: "And you don't find dinosaurs buried with people so they couldn't have lived at the same time."

So Ken Ham is right about one thing. If you lose them at Genesis, you might as well kiss that whole Bible as history thing goodbye. Goodbye, literal interpretation of the Scriptures. Don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Morning Joe Rubs Weiner the Wrong Way

So I had (well, I accidently chose) to sit through another round of the dial-up intellects on Morning Joe giving their take on epidemiology. A typical monkey/football scenario. C'mon, people, it's a broadband world. Don't you have some staffer with a laptop that can Google the government's response to the H1N1 epidemic? Could you at least try to be moderately informed on a topic before you open your yaps and could you please, on issues of public health, make an attempt to get the facts straight? Take this reaction (please) after a relatively dry, fact based report on the status of the vaccine (government has ordered 150 million doses, vaccine will be ready in late October). The reporter looked a little stunned as some former Bush security advisor, who still resides in Stupid City, asked this perceptive and hard hitting question: "I heard there is some problem with mercury in the vaccines." Heard from who, dipshit? Your wife who heard it from Oprah who heard it from Jennie McCarthy? And Mike Barnicle, master of the anecdotal non-sequitur, chimes in with: "And how will this affect the public option?" Right, Mike. And why do tangerines smell so darn good? Mika, perpetually confused, looks confused. Willie Geist, who I believe actually has a brain but is careful to conceal it so's not to appear uppity, says nothing. Joe Scarborough takes the ball and heads straight towards Crazyland, mumbling something about "So much for government efficiency" and do you want these people running your health care?. Well, Joe, yes...Yes I do. Who else has the resources to do the research to isolate the virus, develop a series of vaccines, test those vaccines on a massive scale to insure safety and efficacy, and stockpile and distribute them to the population? Here's a hint. It ain't Aetna or Blue Cross. Typical conservative fever dreams: The government is too busy trying to figure out how to sneak Belladonna to grandma in her Glycolax to gear up their secret vaccine factories buried under the FEMA concentration camps just next to the black helicopter landing sites and save America from H1N1. The government is too inefficient to run a single payer health care system but they're efficient enough to watch your every move and take away your guns. By the way, a brown guy is president. Stock up on Depends.

Posted above for your amusement and edification is my new favorite congressman, Rep. Anthony Weiner D-NY, handing Joe his ass on the topic of single payer health care.