Saturday, August 01, 2009

Where No Tar Heel Has Gone Before

NC Legislator Proposes Locating Star Fleet Academy in Greensboro:
When he wasn’t busy fighting for video poker in North Carolina, state Rep. Earl Jones was pushing a bill for such an enterprise (sorry about that).

The bill would fund the creation of a new research facility at N.C. A&T. The bill earmarks $1.7 million to buy land, conduct a feasibility/market study, and create a master plan for a technology research and development building complex called “The Star Fleet Academy Complex."

The conservative Civitas Institute had a ball poking fun at this one, featuring interns dressed as Star Fleet officers and cadets in a pretend video infomercial for the Academy, where students could learn such lessons as how to speak Klingon, use the Vulcan nerve pinch and overact like William “Capt. Kirk” Shatner.

No matter what your politics are, it’s, as Spock might say, "Very curious."

Like most such 'outrages' there's more (or maybe less) to this than meets the eye. The proposed research facility at the North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University would officially be named in honor of astronaut Ronald McNair, an A & T grad who died in the space shuttle Challenger explosion. And, as another Greenboro News & Record reporter notes: No money is currently dedicated for the project in any draft of the budget.

Still, at a time when the state budget is a month overdue, schools don't know when or how much they'll be funded, state employees are facing across the board pay cuts,  people who do work on state contracts (such as your Humble Blogger) don't know when they're getting paid, etc. etc, any legislator who introduces a bill even obliquely referring to Star Trek can pretty much expect to  be mocked.  Nice tin ear you got there, Rep. Jones.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Inevitability II

Whenever you read a story like this:

U.S. Senator Christopher Dodd has been diagnosed with early-stage prostate cancer.

Dodd is scheduled to undergo surgery during the Senate's August recess and said he expects to be back at work after a "brief recuperation" at home.

You can count of the compassionate conservatives over at FreeRepublic to respond with that conservative love:

Does he really have cancer or is he going for the sympathy vote? I just don’t trust the ‘rats. They will say and do anything to push their agenda and stay in power.

SO why this announcement? For sympathy in preparation for a re-election run?

Don't you try for the sympathy vote Dodd. Try crying racism if this don't work. You should be in jail not the Senate.

One decent commenter's

Prayers he gets better while in prison

was answered with this:

That'll depend on whether he gets a daily prostate massage.

But don't ever forget, it's liberals that are full of hate.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Whenever you read a story like this:
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- A Tennessee lawmaker resigned from the state Senate on Tuesday after his extramarital affair with a 22-year-old intern was revealed by an investigation into an extortion case.

You know you're going to read something like this:

Stanley's legislative proposals were largely focused on pro-business issues, but he also sponsored failed measures to ban gay couples from adopting children. He also spoke out against funding for Planned Parenthood because he said unmarried people should not have sex.

Which raises the question: Is this kind of hypocrisy even news anymore? Should it just go without saying that when some GOP lawmaker gets caught boinking someone not his spouse, that he's previously come out strongly against the very extramarital sex he's been having?

You know, I might just like the Republicans better if they'd just be honest, like a friend of mine who once said, "I'm a Republican because I like low taxes and I don't like the government tellin' me what to do. I don't have a damn thing against drinkin' and whorin' around."

Or the only conservative to be truly and consistently funny, P.J. O'Rourke:

What is the Republican Party Reptile? It is a creature of the eighties. It’s neoconservatism with its pants down around its ankles, the Rehnquist Supreme Court on drugs, a disco Hobbes living without shame or federally mandated safety regulations. The Republican Party Reptile supports a strong defense policy, but sees no reason to conduct it while sober. The RPR believes in minimum government interference in private affairs—unless the government brings over extra girls and some ice. In short, the RPR is the new label that our political spectrum has been crying out for—the conservative with a sense of humor and a healthy dose of depravity.

Show me that kind of conservative party, and maybe we can talk.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Shatner Reads From the Meditations of St. Sarah

Okay, it's no "Rocket Man," but it's pretty damn funny.

Extra link here.

Thanks to alert reader Celine for the heads up.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Attack of the Tiny Starlets

My favorite moment from Sarah Palin's farewell speech:

Let me tell you, Alaskans really need to stick together on this with new leadership in this area especially, encouraging new leadership… got to stiffen your spine to do what’s right for Alaska when the pressure mounts, because you’re going to see anti-hunting, anti-second amendment circuses from Hollywood and here’s how they do it. They use these delicate, tiny, very talented celebrity starlets, they use Alaska as a fundraising tool for their anti-second amendment causes. Stand strong, and remind them patriots will protect our guaranteed, individual right to bear arms, and by the way, Hollywood needs to know, we eat, therefore we hunt.

That's right, friends, you heard it right from the mouth of the Right's newest oracle, St Sarah of Perpetual Resignation.

Hillary Duff and the Olsen Twins are coming to take your guns.

Oh, wait, she said "very talented." So tell me, Hellions, which ingenue is the greatest threat to the Second Amendment?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Can You Feel the Love Tonight?

Latest Newspaper Column:

Good friends and gentle readers, it has come to my attention that my poking fun at people on the right -- including but not limited to soon-to-be-former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin -- might be construed as an expression, not of humor, but of hate.

Well, you know me, friends. I am not just an educator, but a perpetual and humble student of life and of the human condition. I'm always willing to learn.

Brothers and sisters, I have learned. I have searched my soul. And I wish to tell you, I have had me an epiphany.

I intend now to turn from hate and embrace love, like my friends on the right. I want to be filled with joy and respect for my fellow man, like my brothers and sisters in the conservative movement.

But from now on, instead of jokes that might be construed as mean-spirited or ugly, I intend to use gentle humor. Something in the spirit of, say, the old Andy Griffith shows, just like those folks on the right.

Take Fox News host Glenn Beck. He was so moved with love toward a caller on his radio show who questioned him about his stance on health care that he began bellowing at the top of his lungs: "GET OFF MY PHONE, YOU LITTLE PINHEAD!" His voice then rose to a near-incoherent shriek as he hysterically demanded again, "GET OFF MY PHONE!"

That's what I called being overwhelmed with love.

Or Dennis Miller. Miller, I seem to remember, used to be one of those hateful liberals. But since 9/11 he's become one of those paragons of conservative love and kindness, as he was when he referred to soon-to-be-Justice Sonia Sotomayor as "Roseanne Barrio" (an apparent reference to the rather large, or should we say, gravitationally enhanced, comedienne Roseanne Barr).

Warms you right down to the cockles of your heart, doesn't it? Because nothing says "I love you" like calling someone fat and making fun of their ethnicity at the same time. I'm sure Dennis was just concerned about Judge Sotomayor's health.

Then there are the good Americans over at the right-wing Web site Free Republic, where love really rules. Like the love they expressed for the pre-teen daughter of President Obama when young Sasha was photographed wearing a T-shirt with an old-fashioned '60s-style peace sign on it. "A typical street whore," one commenter said lovingly. "A bunch of ghetto thugs," cooed another. Other loving comments included, "Ghetto street trash" and, "Wonder when she will get her first abortion."

All this affection was directed at an 11-year-old. For wearing a T-shirt with a peace sign. But fear not, some of that charity was saved for her mother, the first lady. The story was accompanied by a photo of Michelle Obama speaking to her other daughter, Malia, with the caption, "To entertain her daughter, Michelle Obama loves to make monkey sounds."

I was plumb overcome with admiration with that expression of love, as one would be in the presence of the saints, or the Dalai Lama.

You might think that all this conservative lovingkindness is reserved for children. Au contraire. Check out these loving comments from Free Republic about the late and legendary news anchor Walter Cronkite: "Where do traitors go when they die?" "Should have been shot for treason years ago." "Say hello to Pol Pot Howard and all the communist leaders of Vietnam you gave aid and comfort to."

When it's time to talk about right-wing love, though, the real spiritual leader has to be Pat Buchanan. Here's Pat Buchanan's prescription of loving correction for Levi Johnson, the father of Bristol Palin's baby, who'd opined that the governor had resigned because she can make more money elsewhere: "First Dude Todd Palin needs to take Levi down to the creek and hold his head under the water until the thrashing stops."

Oh, I'm sure Pat was joking. But, as we've learned, jokes can be hateful. Unless, of course, they're voiced by a conservative. Then they're an expression of love. Because conservatism's all about the love.