Tuesday, June 1, 2010

I read the news today

I read the news today oh boy
About a lucky man who made the grade
And though the news was rather sad
Well I just had to laugh

My wife and I get two morning papers-- The Oregonian, out of Portland and the Statesman Journal, Salem's paper. Neither are particularly good nor satisfying. They lack the comprehensiveness of say, the Los Angeles Times or New York Times. Then again, those papers aren't what they used to be. The two Oregon dailies we read are a little bit like Chinese food: you're hungry 20 minutes later. And yet, that's what we have. I never fail to find something that sets me spinning, either in humor or incredulity.
And though the news was rather sad
Well I just had to laugh

The two items in the Statesman Journal I found particularly sad and laughable today weren't sublime. In a way, they are both a bit ridiculous. Alas, this is the world we live in...

Bristol Palin to hit speakers' circuit

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) -- Bristol Palin is hitting the speakers' circuit and will command between $15,000 and $30,000 for each appearance, Palin family attorney Thomas Van Flein said Monday.

Van Flein confirmed a report by celebrity news website RadarOnline that the daughter of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has signed with Single Source Speakers. He added her exact fees will depend on factors such as which group she's addressing and what she must do to prepare.

Bristol Palin, 19, is listed on the speaking group's website as available for conferences, fundraisers, special events and holidays, as well as women's, youth, abstinence and "pro-life" programs.

Bristol Palin was thrust into the spotlight as a pregnant teen during her mother's unsuccessful campaign for vice president in 2008. She had son Tripp that year and has since spoken about abstinence and the challenges of life as a young single mother.

Van Flein said he believes she's interested in expanding her message beyond teen pregnancy to include her experiences on the campaign trail and in the media spotlight; her parenting approach; and her outlook on life.

"There's a sucker born every minute." P.T. Barnum... and some will pay between $15 and $30 thousand to hear Bristol wax on hypocritically. And still others love her gosh-darn rogue mom-- enough to want her for president, never mind just buying into the idiocy she panders as right wing wisdom... wait, isn't that an oxymoron?

And then there's the always entertaining Charles Krauthammer, intellectual pinhead--

In today's column, entitled There is enough blame for oil spill to go around, Pinhead posits a question and provides startling if, by this time, overused answers as to where to lay blame for the worst oil related disaster in the history of the planet...

WASHINGTON — Here's my question: Why are we drilling in 5,000 feet of water in the first place?

Many reasons, but this one goes unmentioned: Environmental chic has driven us out there. As production from the shallower Gulf of Mexico wells declines, we go deep (1,000 feet and more) and ultra deep (5,000 feet and more), in part because environmentalists have succeeded in rendering the Pacific and nearly all the Atlantic coast off-limits to oil production. (President Obama's tentative, selective opening of some Atlantic and offshore Alaska sites is now dead.) And of course, in the safest of all places, on land, we've had a 30-year ban on drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

So we go deep, ultra deep — to such a technological frontier that no precedent exists for the April 20 blowout in the Gulf of Mexico.

(Do I even need to interject a comment on how tragically flawed Mr. Krauthammer's rationale is? He blames those that have tried to put a limit, if not stop altogether, offshore drilling and drilling in the Alaskan Wilderness Area, one of the few remaining pristine places left on the planet. He actually blames those who are trying to save the planet for creating the worst oil disaster in history. Unbelievable. And people will buy this nonsense... I saw a decal in the window of a oversize Chevy pickup yesterday that said, "Suckin' Gas/Haulin' Ass." Yeah, Charles... blame those damned environmentalists.)

There will always be catastrophic oil spills. You make them as rare as humanly possible, but where would you rather have one: in the Gulf of Mexico, upon which thousands depend for their livelihood, or in the Arctic, where there are practically no people? All spills seriously damage wildlife. That's a given. But why have we pushed the drilling from the barren to the populated, from the remote wilderness to a center of fishing, shipping, tourism and recreation?

Not that the environmentalists are the only ones to blame. Not by far. But it is odd that they've escaped any mention at all.

former environmentalist

The other culprits are pretty obvious. It starts with BP, which seems not only to have had an amazing string of perfect-storm engineering lapses but no contingencies to deal with a catastrophic system failure... Obama didn't help much with his finger-pointing Rose Garden speech in which he denounced finger-pointing, then proceeded to blame everyone but himself... In the end, speeches will make no difference. If BP can cap the well in time to prevent an absolute calamity in the Gulf, the president will escape politically. If it doesn't — if the gusher isn't stopped before the relief wells are completed in August — it will become Obama's Katrina.

If the above represent the ridiculous, perhaps the following can be considered sublime. The Oregonian picked up a story from the Eugene Register-Guard, with the headline, Strawberry season looks promising, if it stops raining. Again I say, I can't make this shit up.

Living is easy with eyes closed
Misunderstanding all you see
It’s getting hard to be someone, but it all works out
It doesn’t matter much to me
Let me take you down,
’cause I’m going to
Strawberry fields
Nothing is real
And nothing to get hung about
Strawberry fields forever

This December 8th will be the 30th anniversary
of John Lennon's murder

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