Monday, August 31, 2015

With a Gun

The father of slain TV reporter Alison Parker has vowed to work to change the nation's gun laws. Perhaps a joint effort will emerge, including bereft Newtown parents and the loved ones of other mass shooting victims.
The numbers of those slain are increasing by the same sick calculus being decried by opponents of lax gun laws. Perhaps we may soon reach a tipping point...
Until that much-needed moment in our nation's history, consider the Steely Dan lyric:

When you're born to play the fool
And you've seen all the western movies
Woe to the one who does you wrong
You hide in the bushes
Murder the man
With Luger in hand
... ...
Don't try to call me when they finally run you down
Just give fair warning any time you come around
With a gun
With a gun

Official portrait of Gabrielle Giffords by United States Congress. 

In 2011, Gabrielle Giffords was shot in the head, one of 19 victims in a mass shooting. While Giffords survived, eight persons were killed. Giffords resigned from Congress in 2012 to concentrate on her recovery.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Billionaire brags about it

Donny's power of "positive self-delusion"
gave us a summer of Trumpian effusion.
Copter rides, put-downs and riches
displayed for the poor sons of bitches
who confuse braggadocio with solutions.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

That Donald

The big lead in the polls belongs to Trump,
the tycoon who is ever controversial on the stump.
Always winning, he says, (think: Charlie Sheen),
he tosses insults like the Queen of Mean.
Might the Donald be cruising for a kick in the rump?

Monday, August 24, 2015

Holier than Huckabee

The Christian right never heckles Mike Huckabee,
he is their rock star, selling brimstone, chuckle-free,
A troubadour in the good fight,
he will tell you how to live right,
while dismissing groupies who might scream, "Fuck-a me!"

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Wretched refuse?

Republican candidates don't kiss anchor babies.
They'd rather be bitten by a banker with rabies.
"Get all illegals out,"
they shout and they shout.
No ifs, ands, buts or, frankly, maybes.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Donny demagogue

You're flirting with the candidate known as "The Donald."
But don't quickly swallow his brand of lightning bottled.
He's a typical billionaire tycoon,
who sees the world through a silver spoon.
President Trump & co.'s plans would put progress on hold.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Jeb sez

According to Jeb, climate change is "convoluted."
Such thinking could derive from a mind that's polluted,
or maybe this Bush just doesn't get science
and reacts with a knee-jerk voice of defiance;
regardless, it's a 'tude major dudes have booted.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Border wall is possible - but do we want one?

Donald Trump, who continues to dominate all other Republican presidential hopefuls in the polls, has big plans for the Mexican border. Trump says, as president, he would build a wall to stop illegal immigration.

But this week CNN's Gary Tuchmann reported it would be impossible to build an impenetrable wall along the nearly 2,000-mile U.S.-Mexico frontier. Tuchmann basically mocked the idea in his on-site video reportage.

That is a shockingly defeatist attitude and an utterly unrealistic claim. Of course the United States, who put men on the moon more than 40 years ago, could build such a wall. You need a template? I give you the Iron Curtain.

If you build it, they will no longer come

I traversed the Iron Curtain a handful of times back in the 1970s and I assure you that such a fearsome barrier along our border with Mexico would put an end to illegal crossings (and drastically slow lawful passage as well).

The question is whether we Americans want or believe we need a southern border that is on a permanent war footing. The Iron Curtain, perhaps a mile wide in places, was patrolled by the Red Army, including drafted Russian teens with Kalishnikovs and German shepherds. People were killed along the Iron Curtain attempting to escape communism and reach freedom. I lived half of the 1970s in Europe and I hated the Iron Curtain and its little cousin the Berlin Wall. I rejoiced when those instruments of repression were destroyed. Their demise marked a milestone of progress for Europe.

But the question remains: Do we need a modern-day Iron Curtain along our southern border? If Americans want a border wall, trust me CNN, it can be built.

Monday, August 17, 2015

"Humans" -- We can love

"Humanity isn't a condition, it is a quality" This is another poignant line of dialog in the very cool AMC original series "Humans," written by Sam Vincent and Jonathan Brackley.

And ain't it the truth? Sadly, there are far too many human beings in our world today who clearly lack or have lost their humanity. (Think: terrorists, racists, or just run of the mill bastards.) No doubt this has always been the case throughout history.

Still, most of us can empathize, can show compassion, can put the well-being of others ahead of our own needs and desires. In short, most of us can love.

Is it enough to ensure the survival of our species? That is the question. Culture accrues and civilizations come and go, but mankind has yet to achieve a communion of saints on earth, as 20th century British historian Arnold Toynbee famously noted, arguing that absent such an improbable achievement, we are likely to engender our own demise.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Clinton's 2016 camp pain?

Hillary sure figured she’d be the first female sent 
to be anointed prez, that's before her emails went
to the Feebs for a big inquiry.
Now we don't need to hack  her diary
to know Clinton is fearing a career derailment.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

"Humans" -- think about it

In the AMC cable network’s original series “Humans,” one particular soulful synthetic person or “synth,” by the name of Anita (a riveting Gemma Chan), who has developed human-like consciousness, bemoans that the world will never accept her kind. To this her “owner” counters, “We are accepting you.”

Score one for diversity. It is a poignant moment in the episode. But what are the chances viewers and fans, moved as they might be by that scene, ever accept outsiders in their own lives? It would appear that synth Anita has inherited a healthy dose of skepticism when it comes to homo sapiens embracing “foreigners.” Her human owner may not be quite as astute.

“Humans” is set in Great Britain. The more prosperous nations in the European Union are experiencing an historic uptick of migrants and refugees thanks to a number of global factors, including the war in Syria, standard of living disparities between certain former Soviet bloc member nations and the rest of the E.U., and a worldwide upswing of Chinese nationals seeking education and job opportunities abroad.

Of course, in America undocumented immigrants are a major issue in America. Today, the world’s disadvantaged populations increasingly know what they are missing and they know where they have to move to in order to get it.

Kudos to the creators of “Humans” for giving us food for thought about the actual state of our society wrapped in cool science fiction in the best tradition of the genre. “Humans” is thought-provoking, but also can be safely enjoyed by those who have yet to develop human-like cerebration.