BoingBoing links to a series of videos of the Easter Bunny scaring kids. Some may say that's wrong. I remember making my sister cry after one of our dogs had killed a rabbit and left it laying in the yard one Easter. Of course I told her it was the Easter Bunny. But, hey, that's me.
Taking a little break from reality today, I wandered into the world of the surreal. Essentially that means I spent a few minutes reading about US politics. More specifically about the impending vote on the 11th hour continuing resolution that was agreed to last weekend that supposedly slashed $38.5 billion out of the federal budget. Word is spreading around that the actual savings are more like $352 million. That's supposedly from the Congressional Budget Office, and that means most of the supposed savings are accounting tricks.
I saw "supposed" because there's no way anyone can know what to believe these days since we've abandoned all pretense of rational debate that contains some semblance of the truth.
In a way it makes me laugh that the folks who agonized over putting the deal together may have been found out prior to the vote being taken. As it looks, they even buffaloed their own respective party members with this.
The maxim is that politics is the art of the possible. Well, I guess that holds true if you consider "the possible" to include possibly proving that we can put a bunch of adults in a room to solve a problem and not come up with a solution.
I actually hope we do shut the government down today. I don't care how close they are to a deal. The supposed smart folks on all sides have proven without a shadow of a doubt that they are not capable of acting, and perhaps thinking, beyond the school yard shenanigans that they love to play with each other. Shut it down and better yet, send them all home. All sides. It's time to start anew and the only ones who don't realize the game is over are those who are still playing as if it mattered. Of course those in the media and elsewhere that are enabling this kind of behavior and not covering it as the folly and travesty that it is should be sent home as well.
Everyone is maneuvering for the post game analysis so that they can assign the appropriate political blame. There's no need to wait. They all deserve blame. And shame.
Back when Terry Jones first showed up in the news I remarked that he had an eerie resemblance to, another self-styled man of the cloth who caused more than a small share of mischief, John Brown. If you don’t know who John Brown is, shame on you. But here’s a quick primer. John Brown was an abolitionist believed in his cause ferociously. So much so that he and his sons and followers killed others for their cause in Kansas. His raid on Harper’s Ferry in 1859 was intended to spark a rebellion that would lead to the end of slavery. The raid failed. He was captured and later executed and many, including myself think he was the spark that let the final fuse that led to the American Civil War. Unless you’re a barbarian you can’t question the rightness Brown’s beliefs about slavery, although judging his actions is another matter for debate. I did just that in a play I wrote about that called Robert E. Lee and John Brown: Lighting the Fuse and to tell you the truth, the questioning and the debating makes the word truth a tough concept to grasp. That’s inconvenient I know, but we just don’t like complexity.
As Terry Jones enters the stage again, this time carrying through with his plans to burn a Koran, we’ve seen that his actions have led to a violent reaction in Afghanistan in which some were killed. Jones so far remains unrepentant about his actions and doesn’t think he’s responsible for the violence and the deaths. His steadfastness and self anointed righteousness reminds me a lot of John Brown’s. Perhaps even more so than his physical countenance. He looks a lot like John Brown before the beard.
That’s a scary prospect because Brown’s actions prove just how far someone who has convinced himself that he is doing God’s work can carry himself and those that follow him. Of course in Brown’s case he’s acting out against those that are equally obsessive about how they must carry out God’s wishes.
I’m guessing here that this latest episode sparked by Terry Jones won’t just come to a fade out ending. I’m hoping that he doesn’t become as historically infamous as Brown did for whatever he thinks he’s doing, but we may have already past that point. Curiously, John Brown and his actions are often glossed over when it comes to American history. I believe strongly that we do so because we don’t want to believe that his violent acts are an integral part of our collective American character. But then along comes a Terry Jones and we’re forced to see that part of ourselves again.
It's been a while. Actually it has been too long since I've put up one of this Sunday morning reading posts. Primarily because I haven't had many Sunday mornings to do any serious reading. Life does that sometimes. But here we go with some Sunday morning reading to share.
Doc Searls poses some interesting questions and thoughts about the whole social thing in A sense of bewronging.
Matt Rosoff thinks that Steve Ballmer really had no choice in how he has chosen to handle the Windows/Tablet debacle. Not sure I disagree totally, but the issue is larger than what Rosoff poses.
An idiot who loves the spotlight, and uses the bible to attract attention and followers decides to burn a copy of the Koran. That prompts those who revere that book to go on a killing spree in Afghanistan to show their anger. This all prompts me to wonder if anyone who loves to play these very dangerous games has ever read anything in either book, or do they just look at the pictures?
We've just opened the last show in Wayside Theatre's 49th Season, Groucho: A Life in Revue, and audiences and critics alike are really enjoying the show. We've gotten great reviews fromThe Northern VA. Daily and The Winchester Star. You can follow the link to the NVD but unless you subscribe to the Star you probably can't get there from here. More on that in a second.
Anyway, it's a great afternoon or evening of entertainment even if you aren't well versed in Groucho and the Marx Brothers. A recurring comment we hear from Groucho fans over and over is that so much is familiar and so much of it is new information. That shouldn't be surprising given that we all come in contact with celebrities or stars at various points in their careers and lives. Peter Boyer does a fantastic job with Groucho and the rest of the small cast helps bring the rest of the characters that surround him to life magnificently.
As the Winchester Star reviewer says, this is one not to miss and I sure hope you don't miss it between now and April 23.
If you're an iPad user, The Winchester Star just launched its own App for that platform. At the moment its free and you don't need a subscription to read the content. Given the paywall that the paper has for Internet reading, I would imagine that would change at some point in the future though. As to the quality of the App. Well, I'll let you be the judge if you try it out.