Another Day, Another Deferred-Success Bomb Plot

Janet Napolitano is the Blanche DuBois of national security: “I’ve always depended on the kindness of observant strangers to stop terrorists.” In the case of the Times Square deferred-success bomber, it was a tee shirt vendor and Vietnam vet Lance Orton.  And while she and Eric Holder love vigilant Americans, you don’t have to be a citizen of the United States to become America’s last … Continue reading Another Day, Another Deferred-Success Bomb Plot

Keeping It Real in Austin

In the culture wars, there are many participants who don’t even realize that they are foot soldiers in the battle between modernity and Rousseauian nostalgie de la boue, a.k.a. Noble Savagery.  For the average person, even going to the grocery store is a socio-political statement of sorts.  For many on the left side of the dial, it is an act of rejecting the more distasteful aspects of modern life, those things which offend the eco-sensitivities, which are often correlated with mysterious “allergies” and other problems that are supposedly the result of plastic wrap, artificial coloring, preservatives, MSG, gluten, nuts, dairy, animal products, mercury, and being toted too damn far.

You’ve seen it, I’ve seen it- I’ve even participated to some extent.  I do shop at Whole Foods, after all.  But I began to become squeamish about the whole organic-vegetarian-vegan-natural universe as epitomized by a place like Whole Foods when it went from a funky hippie joint on South Lamar to a corporate flagship where only well-heeled hipsters or people who think way too much about food and their next piercing (and not enough about their student loans) were shopping and trying gamely to work up an appetite for the pasty gray lasagna at the Raw Bar.  It seemed to me that a lot of the people who routinely and ignorantly decry “corporatism” were oblivious to the massively successful corporate enterprise that was charging them $5 for a half-pint of organic strawberries.

So there was a hypocrisy cum misplaced priorities aspect of all of this, coupled with the fact that all of the people at WF look like they could easily be beamed to France and neither they nor the French would notice.  I don’t think we need to explore hygiene stereotypes here- I’m just saying. Continue reading “Keeping It Real in Austin”

Friday Morning Quarter-Backing the Tax Day Tea Parties in Austin

I went to one Tea Party/Tax Day Protest yesterday, a friend of mine went to another, and I haven’t spoken to anyone who went to the third one, which was not really a rally/protest because (a) it was held at a hotel, and (b) it was limited occupancy.  You needed reservations. The reviews are in: if we are going to have a vibrant, active Tea … Continue reading Friday Morning Quarter-Backing the Tax Day Tea Parties in Austin

Words, Just Words… Lots and Lots of ’em

From “Notable and Quotable” on the op-ed page of the WSJ: John McWhorter writing last week for TNR.com: Why does Sarah Palin talk the way she does? . . . [She] is given to meandering phraseology of a kind suggesting someone more commenting on impressions as they enter and leave her head rather than constructing insights about them. . . . The easy score is … Continue reading Words, Just Words… Lots and Lots of ’em

Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan

I saw “Borat” and I regretted it, until now.  Is Barack Obama really sure that Sasha Barron Cohen wasn’t on the other side of this conversation? President Obama said Sunday that the United States is still “working on” democracy and a top aide said he has taken “historic steps” to improve democracy in the United States during his time in office. The remarks came as … Continue reading Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan

When is Stealing Unethical? This is a real stumper… At the NYT

I occasionally read The Ethicist column in the NYT.  I think I read the first few because I was fascinated that they just got some guy who seemed a bit more honest than the rest of the people looking for a job at the Times to write the column.  I’m not kidding, but if you ask me to pay money to get the introductory column, … Continue reading When is Stealing Unethical? This is a real stumper… At the NYT

Out of Sync

Do any of you remember the Michael Dukakis campaign?  It was one of the most memorably bad campaigns e.v.e.r.  It was back in the days when my husband, who has since sworn off nightly news (even the News Hour with Jim Lehrer- cue retching noises) used to tape the news so that he could watch it.  In an effort to get to the interesting part … Continue reading Out of Sync