Wednesday, August 30, 2023

McConnell: A Brilliant Gambit: The Extended Steak House Theory

 Ol' Mitch had another trip elsewhere today.

The pictures we have all seen tell a pretty graphically obvious story.

Ol' Mitch just went elsewhere, again, today.

A vacuum at the podium.

Some might say.

I certainly did.

After all, it was an identical replay of Ol' Mitch at the podium a few weeks back.

When he just wasn't there.

I think that it's time to give credit to the greatest actor since John Wilkes Booth:  Addison Mitchell McConnell, Jr.

Remember the meeting of key republicans in that steak house after Obama won?

Remember that Ol' Mitch was the ring leader?

Remember that Ol' Mitch said that from that day forward all those eaters of steak would make sure that Obama was a one term president?

Remember that Obama won a second term?

Ol' Mitch was pissed,

Now we have another situation that has Ol' Mitch pissed.

Joe Biden is President.

Ol' Mitch sees a problem for Joe.

Joe Biden is old.

"I think I have an idea" Ol' Mitch said to himself.

Ol' Mitch is old - same age as Biden, same age as me.

"I think I can take that son of a bitch out" said Ol' Mitch to himself.

So Ol' Mitch has started having "episodes".

He doesn't have to stand for re-election until 2026.

So he can do anything he wants.

The Senate works that way.

The "anything he wants", though, is interesting.

What he wants is to kill Joe's re-election; remember the steak house?

New steak house.

Ol' Mitch will be in line for this year's Oscars in the category: "most politically astute and sociologically damaging".

He is making sure that the American people can see in real time one of their major leaders shrivel.

He is hoping that they will transfer that vision, and any related concern, to Joe,

If it can happen to Mitch, it can happen to Joe.

So he hopes that they will think.

You have to hand it to Ol' Mitch.

Damn, that's leadership.

Storm Surge In Florida

Ten to fifteen feet is what is expected.

Ol' Ron told his sycophantic citizens to go to the highest ground possible.

We used to live there.

Florida - Boca Raton.

That's on the Atlantic side.

So I don't know anything about the Gulf side.

But if it's anything like the Atlantic side there isn't much high ground.

For us in Boca the highest ground was the Fort Lauderdale Dump.

Sunday, August 27, 2023

Jacque's Visit Last Time

 I mentioned in last night's post that Jacques had come to the Island to take me to the Council again.

The last time was 11 years ago.

It was a better time than now.

But it wasn't good then, either.

Here is what happened after Jacques came and got me from my Paris apartment way back then.


I stopped when I got back to Rue de Rennes at Café du Métro for wine and onion soup. That supplied the energy for another hour of walking, looping back from Café du Métro, past Invalides and on to Avenue Rapp where I cut back to the river, past Pont d’Alma and back to Pont St-Michel.

By then Le Départ looked pretty good. And un pichet de rosé looked even better.

So I got back to the apartment much later than usual, much past dark, and more tired and more relaxed than usual.

A little glass of calvados seemed to be just the thing to celebrate the end of a great day.

I settled onto the couch and sipped the calvados and stared blankly at the dark screen of the television.

I may have drifted into entry level sleep or I may have accidentally dropped into a state of self hypnosis – there was a soft dripping from the slightly faulty toilet coupled with an unusual intermittent pulse of light coming in the casement. That light cast patterns across the space of the apartment in the gloom of the advancing evening. Either or both of those phenomena – the drip and the light - could have doused my hypnosis-prone consciousness into a state of almost, but not quite, being somewhere other than where I thought that I was.

Or I may have had some other sort of not-normal experience. I have a few times experienced a state that appeared, as I analyzed it later, to have been death, but which had not caused me to fade from existence. Or it could have been any of the - I expect there must be - infinite number of other states of existence or near existence that living creatures must slip in and out of upon occasion.

From this state - whatever it may have been - after some lapse of – dare I say, time - I found myself to be roused, or at least so I thought at the time.

I gradually became aware of, on the floor, an oddly oscillating pool of light that seemed as if it must somehow be related to the pulsing light, which, in unison with the dripping toilet, may have put me into my then-newly-emerged-from state.

But in opposition to that apparent accounting of its genesis, that light on the floor seemed markedly different from that outside source of hypnotic pulsing.

It was more of a static multi-colored mixture than an on and off blinking illumination. It had great similarity to that light that seems to exist behind the door outside my apartment.

In the center of it was the mouse.

Croissants and baguettes are enormous sources of crumbs. Unless one runs the vacuum every day after breakfast – which I do not - one quickly produces quite a scattering of, what - I now could see to be the case - mouse food. The creature was oblivious to my presence. It sat on its haunches – I had never seen a mouse do that except in Disney movies – and happily shoved crumb after crumb into its mouth. I also had never seen a mouse use its paws as hands, but this one was using its paws as hands. I also swear I thought I heard it softly humming a rather catchy, almost familiar tune.

Could it be “Green Sleeves”?

I kept deadly silent. This was such an interesting scene that I just wanted to sit and absorb it for a while.

The mouse finished a crumb, wiped its mouth – again its paw/hand being deployed in a human-like manner - and, looking at me, said, “I have brought a guest this time.”

I responded, “Who?”  (All the other times Jacques has come to see me he has been alone and with messages about Adrianna; so I was very interested who might be the guest.) 

The mouse straightened up from its rather hunched over posture on its haunches, stretched its front legs – I almost said arms – toward the ceiling, emitted that happy kind of sound that humans make when they have just had a good stretch, and brought its arms – I mean front legs - back to what I would call its lap if it were human; it looked at me for a moment. The look, I swear, projected a sense of friendliness and familiarity, combined with something else. Could that something else have been mild disgust? Do mice have that emotion to be registered in their facial expressions? Do mice have facial expressions?

“We call him Le President” he replied.

And he looked at me as he always does; he looked at me as if he expected me to respond in some meaningful way just as he did the first time he appeared to me and said:  “you know that she is waiting for you, don’t you?” and “You have always called her Adrianna”.

“Great”, I thought to myself. “This time he is bringing exhibit A so I don’t have to play our usual game of twenty questions.”

But I kept that thought to myself and waited to see what was going to happen next.

I have had by now so many encounters with Jacques in his various forms – mouse, dog and house sparrow – that I no longer doubt his existence nor do I any longer question his oblique methods of getting to his various points.

So, when he continued mute I reciprocated in kind.

Jacques finally broke the silence.

“There has been a change of plan.  I need to take you to him.”

“How are you going to do that.”

“The way I got here.”

And before I could even think of a reply, let alone vocalize one, I was elsewhere.  Jacques stood next to me in a huge room with a table in its center and people seated at the table.

A doorman said to Jacques “Pardon me sir, who is your guest?”

“Noel from the Twenty First Century.”

“Ah, yes – a troubled time.”

“Just so.”

“So take your seats in the chairs set out for the observers.  The meeting is just starting.”

And we seated ourselves and a voice rang out un-assisted by electronic amplification.

“Who called this meeting?”

The speaker was hunched over his writing desk set off to the side, as were our observer chairs – unlike almost all of the other Leaders he eschewed a place at the huge narrow, but, it seemed, infinitely long, rectangular table that filled the meeting room (although there were a few others who chose his type of workspace) – and he had just dipped his quill into his pot of ink when word had arrived that a meeting had been called.

He was fairly short and dumpy and was bald at the major central part of his head, the baldness being compensated by flowing locks down below the crown of his pate; it was a genuinely eighteenth century look.


“I think it was The President” a short, trim fellow in the uniform of eighteenth century artillery general’s uniform replied.

(Actually, he said something such as “je pense il etait le president”, and that statement was uttered with a heavy Corsican accent.  But this apparently was a post-life group, and language had become subliminally understandable to all of its members.)

As if in support of that assertion, a very tall, very dignified man in a blue revolutionary war American uniform entered the room.

He had apparently heard the question - and the answer - because he said “ It has been coming to us that that which we had expected to happen in only a few years and that which Thomas had always said was necessary for the refreshment of our society - that we tear up the document and start over – has finally after much longer than we had thought has begun to happen”.

“Therefore, as a member of this Council – we being an aggregate of equals – The council of The Leaders, I have asked for a plenary session to summon a representative from the Twenty First Century (a mild rumble of sound accompanied the mention of that century) to explain the problem so that we may rectify it.”

“Here, Here” was the rising cry as the members took their seats, or in a few cases, their writing desks and prepared to discuss what should be done.

“Since you all know my discomfort with extensive public speaking, I ask that you allow me to delegate leadership of the discussion” said The President.

Since the Council of Leaders was, as The President had previously said, a council of equals, anyone could call a session, and the protocol followed that he, or she who called the meeting, chaired the meeting, and led any discussion that the meeting generated. 

But that protocol also allowed for unusual cases to accommodate members’ unique requirements.  It allowed the delegation of a meeting’s leadership in special cases. 

This was one of those cases.  The President was not a speaker; he was a leader.  And he accomplished the things he accomplished through his influence on others, not on his rhetoric.

So the protocol was invoked.

The protocol said that once such a delegation request had been made, it followed that there would be an automatic and proforma unanimous agreement by vocal acclamation.

“Hear, hear” said the chorus of voices that rose from the assembled Council.

“I would like to ask Winston to chair for me, in that case.”

“Hear, hear.”

An older gentleman with something of a stooped posture, wearing what appeared to be a British naval uniform from the Twentieth Century left a writing desk and took has position at the rostrum in the dead middle of the vast meeting room – it was enclosed by that gigantic rectangular table that squared the room.  A small opening in that table at its apparent head was the access point that had allowed Sir Winston to take his place.

“I am honored, Mr. President; let’s be on with it then, shall we?” he said.

“I once had a similar duty assigned to me in The House of Commons and I was confronted then, as I am now, with the need to ask this question: Mr. President, with all due deference to your aversion for public speaking, we nonetheless need to have some indication of the case you perceive to be at hand. Could you, therefore enlighten us?  You, of course, may be succinct.”

“Succinct is good” seemed to be a murmur from the assembly.

The President stood, rising from his place at the huge table.  Then he put his right hand flat on the table; his left hand he put to his chin in what looked – initially - to be that gesture that always seems seems to imply a pondering mood – Rodin used it with The Thinker - on the part of the person employing the gesture.  But the hand didn’t remain at rest in place on The President’s chin.  It moved up briefly covering a major part of his mouth.  And he seemed to push something in backwards into place; then he removed the hand.

“In Connecticut, one of the thirteen original states in the United States of America there was recently a mass murder.  Twenty small children were massacred and six adults by a madman.”

This came out in very low, almost mumbled tones; but it was clear enough for all present to hear and understand.

“This mass murder was done with a firearm.”

The President repeated his hand to mouth with a push gesture, dropped the hand, and continued.

“I have requested the Twenty First Century person – an American and an American who owns firearms and who served honorably in our military, including in one of our wars of his time to be brought here by the Special Courier.”

The President paused for a moment, poured a short glass of water from the pitcher at his place at the table, and slowly drank the water.

Winston chose this moment to speak.

“Pray thee, sir, what has this to do with us?  You have just described the condition of much of the human race at any given point in its long and – many times - dismal histoire.  Mass murder is not a new thing”

The President bowed his head, either in sorrow or possibly in thought.

When his head came back level again with his shoulders he raised it upwards, stared at the chandelier in the ceiling, and repeated the hands to mouth gesture again.

“I need to know how it is possible that twenty six people can be killed with a musket or its Twenty First Century equivalent.”

All heads turned to me.

I just sat there trying to shrink into the cane seat of the chair.

But I was unsuccessful.

Sir Winston spoke.

“Thank you for joining us. Can you shed light on The President’s question?”

“Possibly.  But to be sure I would need to ask The President a question.”

I almost fainted having said those words – asking The President – The President – a question?!

“Of course; what is the question?”

“What do you know about Twenty First Century muskets, Mr. President?”

He looked at me square in the eyes – his were icy blue – and said nothing for what seemed to be infinity.

Then he spoke.

“I know nothing of your firearms but the reason for my question is I do not understand how a weapon that fires a bullet and then needs to be re-loaded and then fired again, and so forth, can kill twenty six people.  Were they tied down or in some other manner restrained?”

“No sir. They were running helter-skelter.”

“How was such a thing possible?”

“He had a magazine.”

“Magazine? What is a magazine?”

“Our guns have triggers that - once pulled - shoot as many bullets as they have available.  A magazine is an external storage device that stores massive numbers of bullets and feeds them to that once pulled trigger.  It is possible to fire thirty or more bullets with one trigger pull and then to remove the magazine and install another and do it over again.”

“But surely that is illegal?!”

“No.  It is guaranteed by the Constitution.”

The President whirled from the position he had just occupied – looking out one of the high narrow windows as I spoke – and again fixed me with those icy blue eyes.

“You’re shitting me, right?”

The meeting broke up in pandemonium and Jacques and I went back to Paris.

Nothing much else happened today.


Now Jacques is back wanting to take me to see the President and the Council again.

I wonder if it has something to do with yesterday's post?

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Seeing The End Of Us

 Joe Biden has been a good president.

He has proposed more sweeping change to America's social policy than, maybe, any president.

Not surprisingly, the creme de la creme of his proposals have gone down in republican fury driven shrieks of "no"; a couple of Democrats helped in those shrieks.

So we don't have quality affordable child care/pre-K education.

The corollary of not having that is that we won't have a new generation of Americans mentally, physically and socially healthy enough to compete for our country on the World Stage. And we have an entire segment of our population unable to work because they can't afford the cost of having their children taken care of while they work. And so they may end up homeless because they can't afford typical rent AND the cost of food.

So we don't have an upgrade to a real, world class, universal health care system; we have fat cat insurance companies picking profit from a purposely designed Swiss cheese matrix of health coverage.

The corollary of not having that is streets replete with sick people, many of them homeless, driven to homelessness by unpayable medical bills.

So we don't have an actual, constituted and funded comprehensive elder care system.

The corollary of not having that is, yeah, again, homelessness.

There are many more things we don't have, that we need, that we deserve, that every other citizen in the developed world has, but that can't be allowed to us, in a post human america, that Joe proposed, and that have gone down in republican shrieks, in concord with two democrats.

And those missing things all have their very real, very negative corollaries.

Joe has done his best.

But it has been far from enough.

And he's old.

He may not live through a second term should he get one.

And his Vice President is about as prepared for the presidency as was Harry Truman; in the case of Harry, he brushed his apparent lack of qualification aside and became one of the great presidents; so who knows?

And the most likely opposition candidate to Joe is a sociopathic, narcissistic idiot who may be fading into delusional senility; hell, he may be in prison when/if he were elected; or he may die of a stroke while raving irrationally on some social network or other.

Jacques showed up here on the Island the other day muttering about the lack of ferry service; when he quit muttering he said he had come to take me to the Council again.

I am considering it,

Friday, August 25, 2023

Lying Bastards

I asked Bing a question: "who did T Mobile merge with recently?"

The answer came back succinctly.

"T-Mobile merged with Sprint Corporation in 2020 in an all shares deal for $26 billion. The deal was announced on April 29, 2018. After a two-year-long approval process the merger closed on April 1, 2020, with T-Mobile emerging as the surviving brand. The Sprint brand was discontinued by T-Mobile on August 2, 2020".

(In a previous life I knew a lot of really great people who lived in Kansas City and proudly worked for a major KC Corporation - Sprint.  They owned homes and went to Chiefs games; a lot of them lived in Johnson County too. I guess that's all gone now.)

I heard a clip on NPR the other day of the CEO of T Mobil testifying to Congress a while back.

I think it was back when Congress was taking testimony related to the T Mobil/Sprint merger.

It was a short clip.

CEO whoever-his-name-is/was said something like "when we merge with Sprint we will create thousands of jobs".

Yesterday NPR Local said that T Mobile had just announced a layoff of 5000 jobs.

Today NPR Local reminded all of us listeners of the 5000 T Mobil layoff announced yesterday.

I guess today was a slow news day.

In addition, NPR Local supplemented that snippet with the new news (to me it was new) "T Mobile, we have discovered, had already laid off 9000 employees before today, since the merger".

14,000 Americans have lost their jobs so far in that job-growing transaction.

Kurt Andersen's Evil Geniuses needs to be required reading.

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Bing On Prigozhin


So, I said to Bing just now, "Did Putin order Prigozhin to be killed?

Bing did a little looking around and got back to me with:

"I’m sorry but I couldn’t find any credible sources that confirm Putin ordered Prigozhin to be killed. According to a post on Business Insider, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko tells the story that Prigozhin is still alive because he intervened on his behalf, convincing Putin not to kill his former ally and pushing a deal that sent the founder of the paramilitary Wagner Group into exile in Belarus. Putin reportedly offered amnesty to Wagner Group soldiers who lay their arms down immediately and tasked his security forces to 'eliminate' Prigozhin. However, it’s unclear whether Putin was involved in the plane crash that killed Prigozhin".

Patrick Henry Is Passe

I just heard a snippet from material created by Prager U, a non-university, not an education institution non-profit founded by a conservative (conservative being that new description of racist-fascist nut cases) radio personality.

The snippet features Christopher Columbus making an observation.

"Being taken as a slave is better than being killed, non?"

(This delivered with a faux Spanish accent.)

I guess we've moved beyond "give me liberty or give me death".

It should be noted that this is also part of the new State of Florida public education curriculum.

That curriculum holds, therefore, that it's better to be a slave than dead, and that, in any event, slaves get a lot of useful skills.

I understand that one session is devoted to screening Gone with the Wind for the students.

It's a relief to see a governor and a state take such care to avoid indoctrinating young with all that crazy left wing woke stuff.

Just the basics.

That's all they need.

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Potpourri And News Snippets: 081523 - Napoleon's Birthday

From Atlanta: RICO? How appropriate. But donnie the dildo is still no Michael Corleone.

But the polls say nay: donnie the dildo is in a dead heat with Joe.

There are surveys yet unpublished trying to answer the question, "how can so many Americans be so fucked up".

Perhaps not coincidentally there are questions not yet surveyed "how can so fucked up be American?"

Chris Christie has taken over second place in New Hampshire.

Casey DeSantis has been heard muttering about castration as a marital rite.

 Alternatively, Casey DeSantis has been heard muttering that castration is good for the republican gene pool.

Ron DeSantis has not been seen for 14 days.

Joe plans to travel to Lahaina as soon as they can clean everything up that could trip him.

Gavin says he will "walk barefoot through the coals" of Lahaina.

Bad taste is rampant in all current internet posts about Lahaina.

donnie the dildo announces that he will, at a press conference, "reveal the steal".

Editorial Opinion: donnie the dildo is no Michael, no matter how hard he scrunches his anus.

If you like my fiction, as presented here, please buy my books.

Just ask Bing about Screen Saver, Closing Time, Saigon 1967, A Curious Confluence, and The Cream Soup Spoon.

Spoon even has a hardcover.

Sunday, August 13, 2023

Chapter One: How It All Started, Again

Peter thought to himself "I guess I'm going to need to clean house pretty soon.

"I hate to waste a moment of my few remaining moments on that soul killing sort of activity, but I guess I am going to have to do it,

"After all, the spider webs are beginning to occlude the light from the ceiling fixtures, and those fixtures are high bright LCDs".

A high pitched, metallic sounding "voice" rejoined.

"Yes, I think it's time. But leave our food traps, please".

That voice was the voice of Sophia, one of the many spiders that had moved in with Peter over the years.

Alfie, an apparently big orange cat, but actually a fluidly mobile entity, spoke.

"Peter, we need you to start writing again.

"You said another was imminent, and it is getting REALLY IMMINENT.

"And it can't happen if you don't write it".


The metallic sound of the word "bullshit" made Peter start to laugh; Sophia, if anything, was a proper lady; "bullshit" would not have been thought to be a part of her mental processes, let alone her ready-to-use vocabulary.

But she used it. 

Peter started laughing, stopped, started again, and then could not stop.

Choking ensued.

Things calmed down and Alfie, Peter and Sophia stared at one another.

Peter had told Sophia of his adventures with Bert, Cinq, Rose, Genji, Lancelot and Alfie when Alfie had appeared one day at 98118, the residence Peter, Sophia, and the rest of the 98118 spiders share; he was sneezing amongst the spider webs, but otherwise seemed to know his way around.

"This looks just like Bert told me it looked" he said.

Sophia immediately identified Alfie as kindred, although he had half as many legs as she.

After all, Peter only had two.


And she had accepted him.

So, staring at each other after the "bullshit" they had every component of an ability to sort things out.

Saturday, August 12, 2023

Military Promotions/Tommy Tuberville/WTF?

This football coach has lurched from obscurity in most of America to Chief Obstructionist in the US Senate as far as promotions for our Nation's senior military officers goes.

He -Tuberville - got a thorn in his paw, or a wild hair up his ass, or something equally bothersome a while back.

The irritation was that American troops were getting good, modern medical care.

Being from Alabama, Ol' Tommy was incensed.

So he decided to invoke another of the apparently myriad US Senate protocols designed to keep anything from ever happening.

In the Senate.

Or our Republic.

He is blocking all the promotions of our senior military commissioned officers.

That gives him, one person, control of the perks and paychecks of the senior defenders of the Republic,

I hear Ol' Tommy has a brilliant football mind.

Is that something like chess or checkers?

Or is he just so plumb stupid that he can't see catastrophic damage when it crawls out of the hole that is his pitiful tiny world view and bites him on the ass?

Thursday, August 3, 2023

A New Word In World Diplomacy


Destroy that cathedral.

Bomb that shopping center.

Lay waste that maternity ward,

Sink those ships of commerce.

Slather those doorknobs.

Destroy that wheat in the field.

Blow up those granaries.

Mine those wheat fields after destroying the grain in them.

Cumulatively, those things and more, much, much more are called a "PUTANTRUM".


Losing Is Not An Option

 Nor is going to jail.

In the dawning era of the MAGAFASC party, any election lost is an election rigged.

Any crime detected and brought to trial is a witch-hunt.

Intuitively - leave the intellect out of the equation - that sounds messed up.

Winning has always been the province of the good guys, so an election won, we used to believe, indicated who was best.

And shooting someone between the eyes on Fifth Avenue used to be, obviously a crime.

But in the new era the acid test of good, bad, fair, foul, or even real, is the MAGA TEST: "If we don't win, or we go to jail, how corrupt a land do we inhabit; we need to tear it down and burn it up; and the Great Leader will prevail for eternity".

But nobody could believe that.