Two More Down

mccain.jpgGiuliani out, John Edwards out.

Giuliani wasn’t ever going to get it — he’s not all that popular even here in New York. Despite Fox News’ hammering us day after day with the phrase “America’s Mayor,” he was never suited for the White House. He’ll become CEO of some corporation, and make more millions, and we’ll all be better off.

Still fighting on the GOP side: McCain, Huckabee, Romney and Ron Paul.

Still fighting on the Democrat side: Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

I wish the Ron Paul camp well. I will always believe that everybody has a right to equal access to the White House, and to equal publicity and consideration if they’re a serious candidate.

I will always disagree, for instance, with those people who say Ralph Nader shouldn’t have run, or that he “helped” George W. Bush get elected. The White House is not some prize that’s intended to go only to the mainstream candidates.

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America, Interrupted

bush.jpgTime Magazine takes Bush’s State of the Union address and details the word frequency.

He used the word “terror” 23 times, but the word “future” only 13, and “hope” only 11.

He used “security” 13 times, but “freedom” only 9.

“Nation” got 24 mentions, but “citizen” only 10.

He spoke of “Iraq” 39 times, but “Afghanistan” only 8.

“Enemy” was important enough to mention 12 times, but “peace” only 8.

“Education” got 4 mentions, but “faith-based” and “holy” each got 3.

The word “science” did not appear.


Followup: A commenter at Pharyngula, Brian W., has pointed out an error in this post:  

Um, Bush DID use the word science.

“On matters of life and science, we must trust in the innovative spirit of medical researchers and empower them to discover new treatments while respecting moral boundaries. ”

He also used the words “sciences” and “scientists”.

As I said over there: My bad, Brian. I’m another of those Americans who can no longer bear to hear Bush speak. I used the word list from the Time Magazine site, trusting that it would be complete.

Dear President Obama

obama.jpgIf it’s you, that is. Clinton could still take the marbles, and other than having to sit through four years worth of the Republican Hate Machine, I’m okay with that.

But … there will come a time early on in your administration when you’re tempted to say “Let’s move on. Let’s put this whole sordid business behind us and get on with the nation’s important business.”

I hope you won’t do that. Because the nation’s important business, after 8 years of Bush and Friends doing just about everything they could to screw up America and suck billions of dollars out of it for themselves and their thief buddies, never mind anything else, IS the current mess, and the people who caused it.

I realize you have to work with Republicans, and that will be a good thing — they’re Americans, too, after all — but there are some people who should definitely not be able to just walk away free.

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Day 12 – TMH

dude.jpgFeelin’ good overall. I’m noticeably stronger than I was.

Hunger is a constant companion these days, and I don’t seem to mind it. I wake up hungry, go to bed hungry, walk around hungry. But considering that hunger went away completely when I was fatter, that’s a good thing. And by “went away,” I mean I somehow lost the ability to tell when I was hungry. What might have been hunger came across as weird weakness, which was scary. Meaning at times it seems like I was training myself to be afraid of being hungry.

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Nation of Screams

bear-scream.jpgJust thinking about the talking heads on TV. You’ve got the sniggering, smirking auto-back-patters who are in love with their own political brilliance, and then the freakish ultracon ragers like Bill O’Reilly and his recent clones. Plus a news media that leaps into the fray only to blindly go along and parrot the words of both.

I was thinking about it, as I often do, in a visual metaphor.

Say you’ve got this nice, safe beach, a place you’ve been a thousand times before, and you know it’s completely safe. Ten-year-old you and your friends enter the water how? In a screaming, laughing, splashing blind rush.

But then say there’s this rocky thicket, a place you’ve never been before, with irregular jagged rocks sticking up out of the ground, thorny brambles scattered here and there, visible pits in the ground and musky, beastly whiffs on the breeze.

How do you go in there?

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Vesuvius on Xanax

vesuvius.jpgI was thinking about The Matrix movies this morning. The whole mystical woo-hoo surrounding them annoyed me, because I wanted only special effects and explosions. Hey, sue me, I’m a guy.

But The Matrix came to mind because I was mainly thinking about the … deepness … of us. The unseen part. The motive force.

Okay, stop right there. Whatever you’re thinking – spirituality, or oversouls, or thetans or whatever – that’s absolutely not what I’m thinking.

I’m considering us in a totally non-mystical way, thinking about all the stuff we could be doing but aren’t. The capacities we have but don’t display. The full range of our personal capabilities which most of us never explore.

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Day 6 – TMH: Gym People

thundra.jpgHaving been out of the gym for a while, I’d forgotten about these people:

The Coveters: Those people who seem to want to control whatever piece of equipment they’re working at, even if they’re not on it at the moment. Like slow golfers who don’t want anyone else to play through.

The Campers: Those who do a set and then sit on the equipment to rest, preventing others from using it, but who never notice people waiting. (One guy today had a THERMOS with him. He sat on one of the machines and poured himself a cup of coffee.)

The Cocooners: The people who wear earplugs and carry music boxes with them everywhere, so that if you wanted to share a moment of camaraderie in the gym, a funny comment or a word of encouragement, they can’t hear you.

The Compulsive Wipers: The people who insist on thoroughly wiping down each piece of equipment before and after they use it, generally making you feel guilty because you’re not doing the same, and thus potentially infecting them with all your horrible diseases.

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Day 5 – Too Much Hank: Progress?

I’m purposely not weighing myself for a couple of weeks. If there’s progress, I want it to be dramatic progress. If there’s no progress … um.

But today when I went to the gym, two things happened. One, when I lifted my feet one at a time to tie my shoes, it was slightly — but noticeably! — easier. I felt a teeny bit more flexible.

Then when I went upstairs to the indoor track, I bounced up the stairs. Up until just 2 or 3 years ago, I always took stairs two at a time, but these days I just trudge, one at a time. Today I bounced. It wasn’t much of a bounce, but it was a definite bounce.

Later, I was sitting in a deep chair that I almost dread getting up from, just because it’s such an effort. But today I got up from that chair easily. Hmm.

All this might be boring as hell to everybody else. But to me it’s exciting.

Something is definitely happening.