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black helicopter watchdamned lies

Clown digging up silliness from the dung heap of history

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One of the benefits of the profound ignorance of a large swathe of the American people lies in their inability to recognize irony. So, when a first term member of congress who is probably looking at being a one term member of Congress pulls something out not from the Karl Rove playbook but the Joe McCarthy playbook, people will miss it. Our political discourse has skipped self-satire and gone straight to slapstick. As Gibbs rule number 7 puts it, “when you lie, be specific.”

Allan West, Congressman from Mesron and Florida, is now trying to win a redistricted, largely Democratic district by railing against the Democratic Progressive Caucus as “Communists’ announcing that he’s “heard that 80 member of congress are communists.” [Read more →]

bad sports, good sports

Bad sports, good sports: Bobby Petrino fails his players

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During the heart of the Tiger Woods drama of a couple of years ago, I wrote about the fact that I was pretty uninterested in the personal lives of professional athletes. The same goes for coaches in professional sports. I am not totally immune to the off-the-field stuff, of course. I am prone to disliking players who are simply bad teammates (see Terrell Owens) or coaches who lose their minds on a very regular basis (see Brian Kelly), but, for the most part, I look for results. Amateur sports, on the other hand, are a different story. College coaches, for example, have a very different kind of responsibility than pro coaches. Parents have entrusted their 18-year-old kids to these people, so college coaches need to hold themselves to a higher standard, whether that means their in-game demeanor or their off-the-field behavior. [Read more →]

Bob Sullivan's top ten everythingsports

Top ten rejected names for baseball teams

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10. The New York Dolls

9. The Philadelphia Cream Cheese

8. The Seattle Frasiers

7. The Boston Beaners

6. The Charlotte Raes

5. The Fort Worth Their Weight In Gold

4. The Phoenix Envy

3. The Major League Assholes

2. The Austin Powers

1. The Corpus Christi Chris Christies
 

Bob Sullivan’s Top Ten Everything appears every Monday.

religion & philosophy

the day before The Day

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Big day, tomorrow … and not just for all Christians, but for all peoples … that’s what I believe.

“We are the Easter people,” Pastor Jim Miles of First Prez-Fort Stockton reminds us ….. and that is what we affirm tomorrow, the day for which we have prepared over the past six weeks, the day for which we live at all times. A promise was made on a joyful, star-lit night, in a stable in Bethlehem … but that promise was kept on a bloody, storm-darkened day, on a hill outside of Jerusalem.


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politics & governmenttrusted media & news

$10 million chandelier for sale

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on the lawpolitics & government

Crackology in court

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As it is said, politics is showbiz for ugly people. The Judiciary, then, is largely a political field for those who don’t like shaking hands. This is no indictment against those on the Supreme Court or a lesser bench somewhere. It is a fact recognized at the Constitution’s writing and ratification. Without checking, I recall in the Federalist Papers on the matter of the Supreme Court, the clear problem of Justices being beholden to the President who nominated them and/or the Senators who confirmed them was to be addressed with lifetime appointment. The theory (which I think was from Madison) was that while a Judge may indeed be in debt to those who put him behind the bar it would be a debt never paid as the Judge is more protective of his own legacy as a fair-minded arbiter, however fictitious that may be, than he is eager to keep political accounts squared since he is now in his final office. As with the rest of the Constitution there is little reliance on having virtuous, capable figures at the highest positions in government, rather there are institutionalized incentives to persuade whatever rat-bastard winds up in there to do the right thing. So while the Court is allegedly above politics we know jurists to be subject to the same disabilities as Presidents and Legislators. They have power. It corrupts. Let’s forgive the President’s recent statements then for they are not as unprecedented as the appalled detractors would have it. FDR spoke against the high court in strident terms. He ran against them, something Obama clearly intends to repeat if he loses. Thank the gentleman for this unambiguous invitation to apply a bit of Crackology in the marbled chambers. [Read more →]

environment & naturevirtual children by Scott Warnock

Ah, the not-so-sweet smell of sustainability

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Children today are barraged with messages about going green, about sustainability, about saving the environment. But if you are a parent, you still probably spend a lot of time walking around the house switching off lights. [Read more →]

religion & philosophy

The answer to everything

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If you’ve ever wondered why we are here, this article is for you. If you’ve never wondered, some part of you has been wondering without your knowledge or else you wouldn’t be reading this now. There’s been a lot written about what life is and what we’re doing here. Some of it is very technical and philosophical. Some of it is very metaphorical and poetic. And then there is the actual answer, which we may never know. However, one truth I’ve noticed about this world is that cycles exist within cycles within cycles. Electrons swirling around a neutron are similar to our planets swirling around the sun. The shape of a leaf is indicative of the shape of the tree it came from. History repeats itself. Myths evolve over time but their basic elements all remain the same. Putting these truths together I was able to trace back to the origins of the first story and, to my shock and awe, uncovered an answer to a question I’ve been wondering for a very long time: why did the universe evolve to become so seemingly complicated? The answer, ironically enough, is incredibly simple. [Read more →]

books & writing

Lisa reads The Face Thief by Eli Gottlieb

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There is something I find really intriguing, at least in novels, about a female criminal. Their motivations seem so different from most male criminals — it never seems to be just about greed or power. It’s something more subtle. In The Face Thief by Eli Gottlieb, Margot is a promising young journalist. It doesn’t take long for her to realize that the lavish lifestyle she can glimpse from her assignments is just out of her grasp…but there are ways to extend her reach. [Read more →]

moneypolitics & government

The plague of lolz

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March Madness concludes, an event handled something like an outbreak of typhus in workplaces across the country; treated with quarantine and let to run its course. Recent racial tensions notwithstanding, it culminated in a charmingly integrated riot. But if it weren’t the parade of paid amateurs in their skivvies, it would be some other diversion; perhaps the buttons on our shirts or better, the buttons on Kim K’s shirt. Are the flags still at half-staff? Must be for Whitney, national treasure that she was. It couldn’t be that there are caskets burdened with the bits of American soldiers pouring into New Jersey as they have never been lowered for that yet. There is a drought across the nation. It is a drought not of water, though that, too. What we thirst for, seek and find absent in every dusty bucket on every rusted hook is seriousness for the serious matters; sobriety in the face of sobering events. We desperadoes are a small and vilified minority. Instead of frank discourse we meet the mouthpieces of vested interests or free-lance mouthpieces without portfolio who, on speculation, ape the paid press agents. For any who question the state of affairs, whether it is the public debt or private vice there is one ready rejoinder with all the insight and subtlety of a vuvuzela; lol. [Read more →]

sports

End of college basketball. End of college.

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There is a Godard movie that closes with the caption, “End of film. End of cinema.”; even by French standards, it’s awesomely pretentious. Friends and I became obsessed with it and tried to adopt it into our daily conversation whenever possible. (“End of sandwich. End of lunch.”) With Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari finally winning his first national title, it seems worth reviving this grammatical construct, for surely Calipari’s ultimate triumph has signaled the point when players ceased being “student-athletes” and officially became “teenagers killing time before declaring for the NBA draft.” [Read more →]

religion & philosophy

So Thomas More and Hank Williams bump into Bob Dylan and Wittgenstein…

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Nothing is so difficult as not deceiving oneself.–Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosopher and Chief Instructor, Cambridge International Clown College and Brewery

Very bright young woman who used to work for me posted a note to Facebook saying, “Remind me again why I keep trying to be someone that isn’t me…” I think that’s the universal human condition in a lot of ways, but that’s a large part of the problem.

When I seek enlightenment, I turn to Bob Dylan or Hank Williams. I misquote both at times, but get the idea back. My comment to my friend was “Be yourself but decide how much of yourself you want to be.” I base that on the idea of strategic openness. I try to be the guy with no hidden agendas in my dealings with the world, but that doesn’t mean I want everyone to see everything about me at everytime. Quite the contrary…I say what I think but try to say it when it can be heard. I’m not Barrack Obama with a bully pulpit, and I’m not Bob Dylan with a mystic connection to the world. Dylan is notorious, of course, for saying what he thinks but not in a way that reveals him. There are far poorer role models. Anyway, I referred her to this peformance of one of his most optimistic songs (NOT) from Subterranean Homesick Blues — the Dylanesque version of It’s a Wonderful World.

Dylan being optimistic

There are a lot of Hank Williams songs that fit this problem. You can listen to his stuff and what you hear is total exposure of self, and yet there’s just that bit of shadow over in the corner. Watch the center, but your eye keeps being drawn to the darkness. If you listen to something like I Can’t Help It If I’m Still in Love with You or There’ll be no teardrops tonight, you can feel the problems of concealing things that should be shown, and opening up the things that are best left in shadow. Well, he figured it all out pretty well

watch?v=19vApPwWqh8&feature=related

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bad sports, good sports

Bad sports, good sports: When throwing at a batter is not okay

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There are a variety of reasons why a pitcher will intentionally hit a batter with a pitch. Often, it is done as a retaliation after a slow homerun trot or a batter on the pitcher’s team had already been hit by the opposing pitcher. Baseball is filled with “unwritten rules” that dictate when various things need to happen, and “purpose” pitches certainly fall into this category. Many times, the pitch does not actually hit the batter, but merely makes him dive out of the way. Baseball writers sometimes call this “chin music,” romanticizing the concept of revenge in the national pastime. Is this all really okay? I guess it depends on who you ask. There are times, though, when it is very clearly not okay. Sunday’s preseason game between the Colorado Rockies and the Cleveland Indians in Scottsdale, Arizona, was one of those times. [Read more →]

Bob Sullivan's top ten everythingends & odd

Top ten signs the Easter Bunny hates you

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10. All your chocolate is of the ‘baking’ variety

9. Your Easter eggs have little fuses coming out of them

8. The grass he uses in your Easter basket is from the Dog Park

7. He has “F.U.” shaved into the fur on his back

6. He starts each day by egging your car

5. He told you that Santa wasn’t real

4. He says he wants to cut off your foot to carry around for luck

3. He’s always dissin’ your peeps

2. The eggs hidden on your lawn are six feet deep

1. Those ain’t Raisinets
 

Bob Sullivan’s Top Ten Everything appears every Monday.

politics & government

Taxes are the price for a civilized country…

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The condition of man… is a condition of war of everyone against everyone.

Thomas Hobbes

To be educated, a person doesn’t have to know much or be informed, but he or she does have to have been exposed vulnerably to the transformative events of an engaged human life.
Thomas More

 

Can you say AN/PDR-27R?  ALPHA-NOVEMBER-PAPA-DELTA-ROMEO-TWO-SEVEN-ROMEO? [Read more →]

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