Monday, September 18, 2017

Vietnam!


Vietnam. If you werent around when that war raged on you dont know nuthin about division. Oh we have division now between dummies and non dummies and white supremacists and normal people but thats not what went on back then. Ken Burns latest is a must. His past documentaries have been fascinating and this one should be just as great. Burns may be the James Patterson or Thomas Kincaid of documentarians but you cannot deny his passion or attention to detail. His Baseball doc and his Jazz doc were the ones I looked forward to for years and neither disappointed. Vietnam wont either.

Vietnam was the event that "radicalized" me. Before 1968 I cared about baseball. The 64 Series with Bob Gibson, the 65 Series when my Twins lost, the 67 American League pennant race when my Twins lost on the final day. That was it. That was my list of what I cared about. Then came 1968.

1968 I was in 6th grade. I was oblivious to what was going on. I remember LBJ quitting on a Sunday night and my grandma expressing surprise. I remember Bobby Kennedy coming into a presidential race I knew nothing about. I remember MLK being assassinated and Bobby Kennedy going into a black neighborhood and telling them what had happened, an act of courage and compassion that has never been duplicated in politics. But Vietnam? That was just a war far away and one we had to win. Just like WW2, the war my father fought in. Hell yes I was for the war, why wouldnt I be? I was a kid raised on WW2 movies and TV shows.

One day Sister Julie asked us in class who supported the Vietnam War. Now in a suburban Catholic school in 1968 Sister Julie was different. She played guitar for chrissakes and was young. In retrospect of course she was asking the question for a reason. The hands that went up were almost unanimous in a hell yea we support the war. One girl openly gasped at the support. "what why?" she gasped..."oh noooo you guys" she wailed. 1968.

I went home that night and talked to my parents about what happened. How could that girl be against the war? And then my Mom said something I cant forget. "Im not for the war" HUH?? Mom what? Dad chimed in with the same answer. So I began to research as much as a kid could.

Welcome to liberalism. Welcome to radicalization. Welcome to realizing that young people were being sent to their deaths for lies. And hey, I learned other than WW2, thats how ALL of America's wars worked. Lies.

Then Bobby Kennedy was killed, Hubert Humphrey won the nomination at the Chicago convention. My Republican mom was appalled at the chaos. My Democratic Dad's political hero was called horrible names and my Democratic Dad's political anti-hero Richard Nixon won the presidency. I was sickened.

Vietnam became my nightmare. What in the fuck were we doing there? I argued thru 8th grade and 9th grade about this atrocity. To be honest I knew just thissssss much more than anybody else. And I let em know. Thus my 4 year fight through a Jesuit high school. I became a pariah in that school. Known as the guy most likely to firebomb the place, it was a struggle. And it was all cuz of Vietnam.

I knew I'd never be forced to go there so that wasnt a problem. I could hide out in college for years if I had to because I was white and had that opportunity. Not to mention my Dad saying with my lousy eyesight and bad attitude I'd never make it past the draft board. But the draft ended and it didnt affect my hatred of that war at all. I still think it was America's initial road to irrelevance. Bad choices doubled down on lead to more bad choices and wow, have we made some horrible choices since 1975 when we officially lost.

Presidents have come and gone since then. The first Vietnam era guy was Bill Clinton, who used his intelligence to avoid being sent to that crapfest. George W Bush used his connections to avoid being sent there, Barack Obama was 10, and finally Donald Trump used his bone spurs and connections to avoid it. Vietnam vets dont win elections. John Kerry and John McCain prove that fact. Christ, even Mitt Romney was laying on French beaches pushing Planet Kolob nonsense during that trying time.

Vietnam was a huge failure. Watch the series. If you still believe it was a "noble cause" well good for you. Have fun at your Trump rallies.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Mother And It!


Mother is a movie that got an F from its audience and 69% on Rotten Tomatoes which means 69% of critics are still afraid of saying a movie that sparks controversy is a piece of shit. But I will. This movie is a piece of shit, perhaps the biggest piece of digital trash Ive ever seen and Im old. By the way, the hammer over the head metaphors from director Darren Arrogantofsky Aronofsky penetrated my skull like a migraine headache.

The film stars Aranofsky's main squeeze, Jennifer Lawrence, as the wife of a famous poet played by Javier Bardem who seems to have lost his creativity. They live all alone in the country in a beautiful garden like setting. Two fans show up, played by Ed Harris and Michele Pfeiffer who pretty much take over the house and do whatever the hell they want while Bardem takes care of them like a Father. When Pfeiffer eats breaks Bardem's precious apple in a room she was forbidden from entering, all hell breaks loose. Adam Harris and Eve's Pfeiffer's two sons show up and one kills the other and even bangs his head so he has a big mark on his forehead......oh fuck it.....You get it....The fans continue to show up and trash the house and kill each other and eventually kill and eat Lawrence's baby......

This shitfest goes on for two hours with over the top chaos and more than enough of close ups of Lawrence's cherubic face as she screams and looks on in horror as the Trump Rally in her home goes off the rails more than once. She hollers STOP so many times Im wondering of she didnt mean for her pretentious man friend to just STOP!!!

I cannot stress enough how offensive this landfill of a movie is. Oh I dont mean I was offended as a Christian, cuz I'm truly not one of them, I was offended as a human being with a working mind. This constant water torture of a metaphorical beating gets so bad I kept thinking that Aronofsky himself was going to pop up onscreen and ask did ya get that? Huh? Huh?

Jesus Fucking Christ I get it!! You dont like people or phony Christianity. But like when Bill Maher or Sam Harris or anybody else starts telling people of faith how goddamned stupid they are, I have to say ENOUGH! Bullying sucks no matter what side of the fence you are on. This movie is a two hour bullyfest. Its the worst movie I have seen in my lifetime and my first theater movie was Mary Poppins thus admitting how old I am.

STOP! The worst movie of the 21st century has been released.

IT is a movie breaking box office records the last two weeks with its scary clown theme. The children who run around and try and stop the scary clown who eats children every 27 years is to be quite frank, boring as all shit. I didnt care if any of the kids got eaten or not by the time this exercise in futility hit the two hour mark. I just didnt care.

IT has fine acting from kids. They were all very talented with no material to work with. So I did like that, but acting school shouldnt last over 2 hours.

As I was leaving the theater I then tried to make IT, like Mother, a metaphor beating me over the head. All I could come up with is that the clown was a metaphor for Donald Trump. A scary clown intent on dividing and instilling fear. If you think of IT like that from the start, it may be only slightly dull. But I wont be doing that because I have no intention of seeing IT ever again.

Tonight I'm going to watch Ken Burns' Vietnam documentary to cheer the fuck up.....Did I mention Mother is absolutely atrocious???

Monday, September 11, 2017

More Thinking!


1) Charlie Rose interviewed a nationalist white supremacist last night on 60 Minutes like he was sort of political wise man and not the fringe neo Nazi he is. Steve Bannon is quite simply the obnoxious drunk who is one step ahead of everyone else at the table and when he's not he simply blows the smarter person off by calling them a leftist or a commie or biased. You can allow that to happen, Charlie, or you can punch back and call Bannon what he is. Rose didnt do that and didnt even respond to the age old tactic of 'woe is me call me an anti-semite or a bigot if you wish" ok fine you are anti semitic bigot.

Bannon bloviated on and on about going to war for a Presidential puppet of a Russian dictator, about "limousine liberals", the irrelevancy of Nazis and white supremacists, and controlling the borders like we did in the 19th century. We heard nothing from Rose. Nothing when the proselytizing know it all Bannon denied Russian collusion, nothing about the hypocrisy of "limousine liberals" spewing forth from the loud mouth of a former Goldman Sachs executive, nothing about the "irrelevant" white nationalists who have made Bannon who he is by having Breitbart read to them, and asking how we controlled borders in the 19th century by letting white Europeans in willy nilly and bring Africans in against their will. Bannon is full of shit except if he can bring ratings to 60 Minutes by catering to his 19th century views.

2) No other country on earth would allow rebels who failed miserably in an attempt to overthrow a government to put up statues and monuments honoring a band of traitors. No other country on earth would allow monuments to people intent on owning human beings as slaves. None. Yet here we are, in 2017, still arguing with a bunch of slavery apologists over their stupid "heritage". Sorry dog, your "heritage" of genocide and lynchings and oppression and murder and exploitation of an entire race of humans doesnt go anywhere. Fuck your heritage. There are no statues of Goebbels or Goering in Germany because some governments understand not all history is "heritage". But not ours. When you get a loudmouth goon from Queens and elect him with the help of these genocide advocates your "heritage" is safe. Never in my life have I seen more nitwits "proud" of being traitors. Whether its the Traitor in Chief or Bubba from the gas station the simple fact is you support traitors. Not to mention losers. Christ if you want to supports losers just become a Atlanta Falcons fan.

3) A local incident occurred earlier in a small town in Iowa called Creston in which 5 white dimbulbs posed in a cornfield wearing white hoods, carrying guns and holding a Confederate flag.. The five have been thrown off the football team and suspended from school. One of the families was horrified and publicly apologized. Yet it seems this blatant act of youthful stupidity at best, and outright racism and threats at worst, has actually caused "debate". There is talk of lawsuits. Yeah, lawsuits. Lawsuits against the school by families of the local Klan Kids who are horrified not by their darling little Nazis actions, but by their tough little fascist babies being thrown off the football team.

Oh yeah. Did I mention their quarterback is black? This is now acceptable behavior in America. It's just free speech and "economic anxiety". Right? Watch out in Creston for the Dodge Challengers.

4) I own a black T shirt that simply says "Resist". Being a friendly sort who regularly is verbally engaged by people wanting to talk, usually about the sports teams I am putting forth on t shirts and ball caps. (Yes I am an elderly white man who dresses like a 15 year old) The Resist T shirt has brought two reaction. A local hotel clerk in Colorado simply said to me "I hate that guy too" and a gas station rest room companion in Nebraska simply said "cool shirt". So theres hope. Keep resisting and dont be afraid to show it. It not that bad to let others know you cannot assume that because I am a white male, have plenty of gray hair, and look like a Biker for Trump, that you can talk all conservative to me without any blowback. It wont happen. I wont be obnoxious about my disdain for the Louse in Chief, but I wont nod my head and try to get away from your bullshit either. Lets all be that way and back it up by voting these assholes out in 2018. Wearing a t shirt and staying home wont work. Get involved. Stand up for yourself. Thank you.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Drinking And Thinking!


1) While driving the rental SUV around the mountains trying to not drive off the freakin road and avoiding helmetless bikers on our latest road trip thru Kansas and Colorado the Sirius XM began to hyperventilate about the death of Walter Becker, a founding member of Steely Dan at the age of 67. Now 67 is too goddamn close to me for comfort but despite my thoughts of my gradually diminishing mortality I really thought backwards. In 1972 I was running around the hood in Omaha (yeah we have one) at 5 in the morning 7 days a week delivering newspapers. I, of course, was totally oblivious to the "danger" I was in. But what I remember about driving around at that time of day was listening to the AM radio and hearing this for the first time.. Do It Again was one of those WOW, what is this music moments for me. This song was unlike anything I'd ever heard. No it didnt change my life or anything but it made me realize there was a new alternative for rock music and the insipid lyrics of the time (though in retrospect the lyrics of 1972 were freakin Shakespeare compared to the idiocy of 1980s hair metal). Walter Becker joins the long list of rockers who have gone away. Rest in peace man. You were one of the great ones.

PS--Hey Nineteen came out when I was in my early 20s and made me realize what an old soul I really was. The lyrics of that song by a couple of guys in their late 20s spoke to me. Yeah I really didn't want to know anybody who didnt know who Aretha Franklin was either. Still don't.


2) This hurricane epidemic makes me crazy. I saw a tweet about I cant hear you deny climate change over this loud noise these hurricanes are making. Denying this scientific fact is like denying a round earth or that Trump is a narcissistic creep any longer. I have no time for you. So why does the "fake News media" keep putting these climate change deniers on the air with equality? These people are either stupid or so in bed with the corporate money changers that what happens after they are dead and buried doesn't matter, which makes them even more dangerous than the ignorant. To deny this phenomenon is horribly irresponsible. When some well off white man who lives in a gated community told me that this not normal heat wave and the hurricane influx was not climate change but "summer" and "hurricane season" I had to walk away shakin my damn head. Of course to upset this man's comfortableness would be the greatest sin of all. So the "fake news" should stop this false equivalency of climate change scientists and self absorbed deniers before that "fake news" idiocy comes around to include me.

3) Both of my Senators voted against hurricane relief for victims of Harvey, Two of 17 Republican opportunists appealing to people not affected by hurricanes. If tornadoes suddenly wiped out half of the Midwest and displaced millions of Plains States small government freaks I doubt seriously if Ben Sasse (Weirdo-Ne) and Debbie Fischer (Who?-Ne) would have voted no (though Im sure hypocritical assholes like Ted Cruz (Canadian-Tx) and John Cornyn (Miscreant-Tx) wild have). Sasse blathered on about reducing the debt and taking money from foreign aid while accusing Chuck Schumer (Fuck You Trump-NY) of writing the "Art of the Steal" .

Again, America, I warn you about this man. Sasse is nothing more than Trump with a goofy smile and a strange sense of humor. He professes his disdain for Trump which gets him a lot of positive press. He only disdains Trump's style of scorching the earth with his lack of human decency. He supports Trump 95% of the time with his votes. So Sasse is nothing more than a new kind of Trump. Dont be fooled.

Our other Senator, a back benching nobody named Deb Fischer (Invisible-Ne), voted no because she was told to and was trying to protect her re-election chances in 2018 by appealing to the aforementioned small government rural voters who would be first in line for subsidies and Medicaid but have no use for the suffering of "urban" citizens. So there ya go. Both of my Senators are an embarrassment to not only their nation, but to humanity. As usual.

3) Look, I voted FOR Hillary Clinton last November, I didnt vote AGAINST the Creep in Chief. I believe Hillary would have made a perfectly acceptable corporate hack President, just as her husband and POTUS 44 was. I can live with that. Its better for America. We wouldn't be saddled for a generation with a folksy Scalia like Neil Gorsuch (Silent Killer-Scotus) had Hillary won. Oh wait she did win. Fuck you with your bullshit about get over it and Trump would have campaigned differently had it been a popular vote election like 100% of all other democracies in the world. Can we invade ourselves for fraudulent elections?

But Hillary, please stop blaming Bernie Sanders for your win loss. I was and still am firmly in the Bernie camp but as I stated before, I voted for my second choice. Bernie has nothing to do with the victory loss you incurred in November, the month the United States went off the cliff into a fiery pit of bigotry and dumb. Look, Hillary, the Democratic primary was not a coronation. You arent royalty destined by birth to be the nominee of anything. Millions of us were to your left in supporting health care for all and not allowing corporations to be deemed "people". Thats how it works. I voted for Bernie because I believe in his politics, not because I hate women or think you're a war mongering nut. So stop blaming your friends and start blaming the real culprits of your win loss. Russian bots, white privilege, an 18th century election system designed to appease evil, misogyny, and your total lack of ability to take chances like telling that Stalker in Chief to back the fuck off as he stumbled around behind you like a bloated orange zombie during the debate. Bernie Bros who voted for Trump are simply the left wing equivalent of Trumps base. Plenty of dumb to go around, Hill. And yes, I will read your book.

4) Donald Trump needs to go. Not because of the illegal acts, the espionage, the total lack of any sense of how government works, the meanness, the grudge against a black man making a joke about your joke of a TV show, the apportionment of unqualified idiots to key positions, the tweets, the coming indictments, the fact he has made the world a more dangerous place, the diminishing power of the United States, the condoning of white supremacy, and the collusion with an enemy. You need to go because you are incest obsessed predator. Makes me shiver this man exists, much less runs the free world.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Cleveland Draft Dodgers!


There's a draft? Wow, I'll tell Max to start dodging now. Chill, Bill.

If that's the kind of judges they have on the Ohio Supreme Court, I feel sorry for Ohio.

Friday, August 18, 2017

White Scumacists!


Just like our President (shudder) I like to take time to think about something before I speak about it. So after days of thought and contemplation I now have something profound to say about Donald Trump.

Just fucking resign you low rent grifting belly crawling motherfucker!

I'll tell you something and Ive posted that picture above before in honoring my Dad. Nothing and I mean nothing makes my blood boil more than seeing that picture of my father in Germany in 1945 risking his fucking life to defeat the dark forces of Nazism and fascism only to witness those racist crackers play dress up and march around chanting their racist slogans and getting into fights and killing a young woman who only wanted to do good. That pisses me off so much I cannot even describe it. THEN when the President of the United States, a truly despicable human being even before Tuesday, strays off the prepared remarks to become himself as he always does, and defend Nazis and Klansmen and White Scumacists and homophobes and misogynists and trailer trash Confederates and creeps and thugs and privileged white punks looking for the latest trend to get attention in between Call of Duty competitions, I think of my Dad and it makes me crazy.

The President of the United States has made it abundantly clear to anybody of not the same mindset of who and what he is. He is a con artist. He is a racist. He is a Nazi apologist. He is a white supremacist. He is everything most of us knew. He is a dumpster fire of humanity who needs to be removed from office either through resignation (which I am sure is coming) or through invocation of the 25th Amendment which of course will never be done by his White Supremacist Republican minions intent on destroying government. Impeachment would take courage and we know that the United States House of Representative is one of the most disgusting groups of people on Earth. This band of wimps and weaklings and outright mental cases (yes I mean you Steve King and Louie Gohmert) lacks any kind of moral leadership to take action against this intolerant asshole in the White House who again, lost an election by 3 million votes to a woman, Yeah Yeah, I'll get over it as soon as these doughy white hooligans get over the losers they worship, The Traitors from the South and the fucking Nazis.

That statement. That 12 minute meltdown on Tuesday was absolutely the most disgraceful 12 minutes of a Presidency perhaps ever. Trump, again, off the cuff, trying to show he's the smartest person in the room, yammering on about fake news and alt right and being all pissed off its a woman yelling questions at him and talking about fine people on both sides and blaming the victims for getting in the way of a car before getting in a plug for his winery. Just disgraceful. Absolutely embarrassing for any American with an ounce of moral decency to watch that world wide statement from a bullying gangster who somehow was elected to be the President of the United States.

We all know now that Trump knows who his base is. Its about 30% of America (or 76% of Republicans), a group of chickenshit racist white people so used to white privilege that equality looks like oppression to them. A band of people who simply refuse to accept anything outside their bubble of advantage. The dog whistles have always been there. But the dog whistles have become outright regular loud shrill whistles now since a couple of years ago when this false prophet came forth and spoke to them in their preferred language. Dumb.

This man is a miscreant. I prefer to think the vast majority of Americans are decent. I mean look at the money raised to help the victims of that madman with the Dodge Charger last Saturday (amazing how the Nazi in Chief takes no time at all to denounce a similar event in Barcelona yet never acknowledges his own terrorism). The vast majority of Americans look with pride at the generation of people who stood up and sacrificed their lives to defeat the very thing that now stinks up our society. I saw an old man at a ballgame last week in a wheelchair throw out a first pitch who was a World War II vet;. The crowd stood and cheered. He was representing my late father and I stood and cheered. What did that man think when he saw those brain dead creeps walking around with a Swastika flag last weekend?

That generation is leaving us quickly. Who will be around in 10 years to remind us of the evil of this philosophy? I shudder at the thought of these young clueless nitwits not being checked by those of us who had fathers and mothers and uncles and aunts who did their part to defeat this horrible doctrine of evil. Earlier this week some contrarian attempted to argue with me that Nazis were not right wing but left wing because they were "National Socialists". Ok genius. After starting to argue about spending a national economy into prosperity by gearing up for war which of course would make Saint Reagan a Nazi I simply quit and walked away. No time for that. You are either an opponent of white supremacy and Nazis or you are one. Period.

Someplace there are millions upon millions of men and women who spent 4 years of their life fighting Nazis and Japanese imperialists who are looking at us from afar saying what in the holy fuck is wrong with you lamebrains. Come on people, stop this nonsense now. 1933 Germany stood by silently as a group of thugs took over. Are we them?

I think not. Stay strong and speak up. Silence is approval. You stay quiet, you condone this.

Get rid of the Fascist in Chief. Then we can work on getting rid of the Closet Case in Chief.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Detroit!


Im not sure what I expected out of Kathryn Bigelow's latest film, Detroit, but what I got was another classic edge of the seat thriller. Bigelow, who specializes in films like The Hurt Locker, which was the tensest movie I'd seen in many years and Zero Dark Thirty, another film of controversy that featured hair raising magnitude, tackles another controversial subject, the 1967 Detroit riots.

The Detroit riots began after years of a burning fuse that finally ran out of space and the bomb went off in July of 1967. The first 45 minutes of the movie involve cops killing people and the people looting the stores and the chaos in the streets. Quite frankly its rather slow and cliche' and I began to wonder when something was going to happen.

And then BOOM!. The next 45 minutes will have you shaking your damn head and cringing as the police home invade the Algiers Hotel, kill a man for running away, and round up the remaining people partying for a long road of torture and brutality. Facing the wall with their hands in the air, the people caught up in this craziness are subjected to beatings and mock executions as the standard police psycho attempts to either get the name of a "shooter" or just be a dick. Then something goes terribly wrong and the "game" becomes real.

Three people were murdered at that hotel on that night and the cops were indicted.

The remaining 45 minutes change from the scariness of what the hell will happen to these people at the hotel to what will happen to the cops who murdered the 3 people. The trial.

Defended by a sleazy lawyer, Jim Halpert, the witnesses are again subjected to another type of brutality. The unfair court system which favors white authority because it's run by white authority. No spoilers here on what happens but you'd have to be a Charlottesville White Supremacist to be dumb enough to not know.

This film, like most Bigelow films, has its detractors, those sticklers who get pissed because the movie isnt 6 hours long and tell a story that the critics feel is more important. The torture in Zero Dark Thirty, the Peoples Tribunal in this one. But Bigelow is a filmmaker, one of the best working today. This movies isnt Zero Dark Thirty or even The Hurt Locker, but its the 2nd best movie of the year behind Dunkirk.

If you want to see a movie, not a history lesson, that may make you want to learn more about the Algiers Hotel murders, by all means see this movie. It'll piss you off and it'll make you despair when you realize nothing has changed in 50 years. But the most important reason to see this movie is to give it money, and then they then may make more movies like this. Something that will whet your appetite to learn more about neglected American history and neglected American heroes.