Saturday, November 29, 2008

Me lose brain? Uh oh!

The worst part about having wingnuts populate the family isn't having to listen to their ill-informed bloviating that numbs the senses with an endless cavalcade of hollow thuds thereby making an already interminably long holiday a Sisyphean punishment, nor how if I was to come up with a drunken caricature of an animated version of a stop-motion Republican sketch comedy program, it wouldn't do satire justice because the aforementioned yokels and their national compatriots brutally slaughtered satire so many years ago, but the existence of those wishy-washy types who, desperate for a faux civility because the world is just too bloody uncomfortable, give equal weight to everyone's so-called opinion, regardless of who carries facts in their sacks and who carries dog shit.

I'm so tempted to stay home for Saturnalia. I'd experience a more adult conversation talking to the dustpan.

So, taking a break from research mode, let's see what's going on in the world, though I'm sure you all have touched on this stuff at least 79 million times in the last couple of days. I may be out of the loop, but perhaps I'll say something interesting.


Ahem. Hey, how about all that craziness in India?

One former intelligence service member told Al Jazeera on condition of anonymity, that the collapse of human intelligence networks in favour of and total reliance on technological intelligence-gathering contributed to the failure.
Someone didn't read their PDB, though it is Al-Jazeera, so take everything they say with a stack of Korans and the severed heads of Christian missionaries. But what about this:
The only silver lining is that there have been no blatant calls for Pakistani blood.

Yeah, I heard about the guy being trampled under foot. Frankly, I'm surprised such things don't happen more often. Good to see the bestest parts about Murka never change. It's comforting.

I'm sure a few of you, if you're as groovy as you say you are, did an extra shot or had a second helping of leftovers yesterday in honor of the birthday of one Mr. William Blake.

Fuck this. I'm gonna go hang out with the chick from the underworld instead.
I bet she's got booze.


Distributorcap said...

did i just read a James Joyce novel?

Mauigirl said...

Sympathies on your visit with your relatives. I'm lucky, all ours are Democrats. Although back in the 80s my aunt was a Republican (she's seen the error of her ways) and one time she and my parents, after too strong daiquiris, got into an argument and she threatened to leave!

That doesn't happen these days, thank goodness.

Hope you survive your weekend and enjoyed your dinner at least!

Mauigirl said...

Sympathies on your visit with your relatives. I'm lucky, all ours are Democrats. Although back in the 80s my aunt was a Republican (she's seen the error of her ways) and one time she and my parents, after too strong daiquiris, got into an argument and she threatened to leave!

That doesn't happen these days, thank goodness.

Hope you survive your weekend and enjoyed your dinner at least!

Non, Je ne regrette rien said...

I'd like the protester's sign even better if it said offecal language. damn. so close and yet so far.

Randal Graves said...

dcap, if you did, surfing the tubes is a strange follow-up activity, no?

mauigirl, actually my in-laws aren't wingnutty, it's mostly my side, but it's like talking to children weaned on nothing but Rush. Oh well, the food was good. I'm envious of your lack of Bush lovers!

JNRR, it may not say that literally, but the spirit is certainly there!

anita said...

you see, the whole thing with blake is that at least when i have my own "visions" (yeah, ok, hallucinations, whatever), i know i am not alone.

Spartacus said...

Randal, we all have skeletons in our family closets, don't we? Heh. One of the best moments of my family visit to NJ was when my Dad discovered that my older brother that lives with him voted for McCain. Naturally, he thanked me for ruining his Thanksgiving appetite, to which I humbly replied, "Good... more food for me."

As for the trampled under foot story, that's a form of dysfunction unique to the suburban paradise known as Long Island.

Betty C. said...

Uh, I'm hoping the relatives in question don't know what a blog is.

fairlane said...

Civility is overrated.

Oh, and BORING.

Randal Graves said...

anita, so when are we going to see your finished product?

spartacus, true, but if they're the dumbasses and I'm open about their dumbassery, does it qualify as a skeleton? ;-)

Wait. Someone else voted for McCain and it was your fault? That's some pretty advanced logic.

The phenomena of unbridled consumption doesn't shock, but one dude at the front door?

betty, oh they're already well aware of my views of their insanity.

fairlane, I concur wholeheartedly.

Wait, that's civil, ain't it. Dammit!

Dusty said...


I don't cotton to relatives all in once place anymore, ever since I punched out my mom on mothers day once. ;p

Old biddy wouldn't get off my back and she was tanked..she asked for it..thats my story and I am sticking to it. ;)

Utah Savage said...

One very nice thing about outliving all your relatives is that I no longer have to endure their incivility. I can manufacture my own, along with the huge meal I don't cook or share with homeless "friends, who didn't invite me over when they had homes. Fuck em all. Is it lonely? Not with the rich array of hallucinations I have when I "forget" to take my meds. This friendlessness works out well with the xmas shopping trampling. I was going to send that door opening man a gift. Now I don't need to. And nobody taking up space in my mind gets anything more than a talking to. You might have seen me babbling to "myself"--no, I'm talking to them...

susan said...

I'm just glad I was able to spend the holiday eating from my usual grocery supply and reading weird books about alternative history. That's a scary enough road to tread but I was temporarily saved from the terrors of meat space.

I'll save 'The Marriage of Heaven and Hell' for Christmas.

Beach Bum said...

I have a different angle of the republican family thing. My son's circle of friends, including his girlfriend, and their parents are all hardcore republicans. I was told by my loyal and loving son not to mention my support for Obama or my liberal tendencies.
To be civil I agreed and realized I did many things I didn't like to get close to a girl many times.
If the little twerp does go republican on me I figure I'll need to learn to change my own diapers in my later years in Mexico.

Tom Harper said...

I'm glad to see a picture of a Real American in that top photo. Yes, By God, English is the offical language. Anybody who disagrees is a moran.

anita said...

finished products are over-rated.

and difficult to, um, well finish.

be nice randal, be nice.

DCup said...

I rather prefer the barfing and moaning I did to a meal with wingnuts. Sorry your holiday wasn't as pleasant as mine.

S.W. Anderson said...

Randal, your take on wishy-washy, equal-time, yada, yada, yada types is right on. Ive seen a couple of instances lately of bloggers quoting Steven Colbert to the effect that facts have a liberal bias. I've noticed that. (Heh.)

So, now that you've done a stretch withstanding the inane onslaughts of wingnuts, you should be steeled and stoked for some unapologetically liberal posting.

Christopher said...

I hear ya,' buddy.

I guess Jim won't mind me sharing this, so here goes.

Almost all of his family are Bushites.

He has one brother, divorced and a blue collar worker, who is a registered Democrat. The rest of his brothers and sisters are Repugs. I remember asking his mother about this and she basically said, "I didn't raise them to be Republicans. I failed at my maternal duties."

It's very sad for Jim.

I refuse to be around his family despite the fact they are kind and generous to me and accept us as a couple. On the extremely rare times when I am in the same room or state with them, I can't resist bringing up politics and starting an argument just for sport and enjoyment.

Randal Graves said...

dusty, I think you might be my hero. So many times I've wanted to engage in fists-a-flyin', since year after year of trying to offer facts hasn't worked. ;-)

utah, that's what is so comical; the average yokel might say "oh, utah, how sad for you." I'm envious. Sure, the wife and kids can be extra annoying, but they're the furthest thing from wingnuts.

susan, I hope I'm not giving away the ending by saying Heaven and Hell get a divorce with joint custody of meat space.

BB, the things parents will do to help out their kids, and shrouding your blatant socialism is certainly a big one.

tom, I'm hoping that by the time us crackers are no longer the majority that there will be enough of a push for bilingualism since Spanish and other languages will be so prevalent that it'll become mandatory at school. I mean, build that fence!

anita, believe me, I know, so whatever pressure exists is merely me projecting.

dcup, well that depends on what kind of barfing it was. If it's that truly painful variety often felt with food poisoning for example, I think I might have preferred the wingnut experience, so yours certainly might retain the crown of Worst Turkey Day.

SWA, you know, I thought I'd be and I guess today's post counts, but I couldn't think of anything beyonda few empty paragraphs to accompany the article. I don't know how you do it.

christopher, they sound a bit like my family in that, unlike creatures like Cheney, there's nothing inherently evil about them, they aren't racists or homophobes, yet for some bizarre reason, at least from an economic and foreign policy standpoint, ALWAYS side with the goopers.

"Obama wanting to talk to the enemy is so naive."

"What about Nixon in China?"

"That's completely different!"

Christopher said...


"That damned draft-dodger John Kerry."

"Excuse me? Your boy Bush avoided Viet Nam and then vanished for 18 months of booze and dope. No one in either the TX or LA Nat'l Guard recalls ever seeing him."

"That story was made up by the New York Times to make Bush look bad."

"OK. And his year long affair with Jeff "M4M Military Man for Hire" Gannon? They just played cards while Laura was away, correct?"

"Well, at least Bush isn't that damned John Kerry."

They're idiots.

KELSO'S NUTS said...


I have lived a somewhat sheltered life in one sense. I have only lived in very large cities, the only one under 3 million people was Oviedo which has about 1/2 million people and is liberal to radical politically, as is the entire North of Spain.

I've never eaten in the home of a Southern White Baptist. I don't believe I even know any. I had two Republican girlfriends from Republican families when I was in my 20s, but I would say that the parents were more uncomfortable with my being Jewish and having been born in New York City than with the political views I hold.

The serious Republicans I know are all in some way actually in politics, affiliated with politics or are large donors. Those kinds of Republicans don't talk about politics the way it sounds like either Randal or Jim's family does. They don't care about any of this stuff. It's about winning elections and getting favors. The talking points are only meaningful if they serve that function. Some of the weirder talking points they regard as a kind of distasteful part of their work. The wealthy people I know who donate large amounts of money to Republicans don't have the slightest interest whatsoever in social issues. I refer to people who I know well.

Obviously, everyone has tangential knuckleheads in their lives.

I have encountered more people online who are anti-abortion and contraception and anti gay rights than I have in life. I have encountered more advocates of war online than I have in life. If I didn't watch CNN from time to time, I would have no idea that that "moran" guy even existed. Of the Americans, I can't say anyone I know well voted for McCain other than those who had a direct stake in party politics. Most Americans I know voted for Obama, with a handful voting for McKinney, Nader, or not voting.

I have never heard the Republican talking points spoken aloud by Palin's Joe-Six-Packs except on TV or youtube. As I said, the Republicans I knew as friends were all very involved in the nuts-and-bolts of it and weren't terribly ideological, just ambitious. Perhaps, I know 10 people and none of them well who are Republicans and would not derive some personal gain from the election of a Republican somewhere.

GRAVES: At what age did you realize that your views were at odds with those of your family and community? Was that very weird? How do they react to your expression of your views? Can you at least laugh about the differences?

CHRISTOPHER: I can't say I've ever met any older Americans who rejected a child's same sex partner but I wouldn't know any people that well with those super hard core views. In some ways, I find it kind of encouraging that Jim's family while holding the views they do, accept you as part of the family.

I have a lot of questions. Do they ever use buzzwords like "the gay agenda," "the gay lifestyle," "special rights," "love the sinner, hate the sin," "bad for morale in the military," or "destroying the institution of marriage" and if so do they apologize and correct themselves for bad manners? Or do they separate Jim and you somehow from the Republican prayer book because they love quite naturally for being a part of the family? Is he a one-person exception for them or have they come to understand the realities and are past the buzzwords? Or do they make some kind of exception for the two of you, but have a problem with all the other "ones"?

Christopher said...

Do they ever use buzzwords like "the gay agenda," "the gay lifestyle," "special rights," "love the sinner, hate the sin," "bad for morale in the military," or "destroying the institution of marriage."

Nope, at least not in-front of us.

Now, behind our backs, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

Well, Christopher, that's not terrible, not great, but not terrible. In my imagination it seemed worse.

But it would be hard for me to imagine a life without gay and lesbian friends and acquaintances because I grew up in Lower Manhattan in the 60s and 70s so I never had an idea that same-sex partner were anything other than some variation of what I was used to. And in my adult life, I was either in school or in the gambling world or the hedge-fund world or the night-club business and those areas of endeavor in big cities are all very mixed, so folks generally pick friends based on common interests or hobbies or senses of humor or something. It's not a straight/gay balkanization at all.

So, in my own prejudice I kind of imagine outside of big cities that there's some crazed-up Festival Of Homophobia going on because I hear about and read about it but have never observed it.

Angie said...

Were we at the same family Thanksgiving dinner? I was the one huddled in the corner playing Monoply with those under the age of 10 to avoid all conversation with those over the age of 10.

Randal Graves said...

christopher, I've never heard garbage like that spoken in front of us either. Whether they harbor such sentiments in their heart of hearts, I cannot say.

kelso, hard to say precisely. Growing up, Reagan was a saint, the Commies were a scourge, and deregulation was the greatest thing since the invention of the sandwich. I wasn't the rebellious, Molotov-tossing teenager type, so I bought a lot of the crap because I was more concerned with reading and playing Zelda because everyone pretty much bored the hell out of me and I'd rather have kept to myself.

I suppose in my 20s is when I started to think about politics beyond the superficial level.

Their reaction? Typical I'd imagine. "We didn't raise you to be an atheist! Israel is the only friend we have over there! Clinton's a draft dodger! Blah blah blah!"

I think a lot of the wedge-issue crap sits with those who don't mingle with others, who are cooped up in cracker suburbia in a cubicle with Limbaugh blaring and Faux News at home. The ease of a binary world is reinforcing, safe, comforting. I wonder if, since they refuse to talk about it beyond the level of simplistic taunts or buzzwords, they've given the world any serious thought.

angie, smart move on your part, lest the blood pressure rise to unhealthy levels.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

GRAVES: The tramping at the mall I'll never understand.

There's a civil war going on 100 miles to my South. It's been going on for 40-year. Yet, when people are killed it's for a reason: money, drugs, land, vengeance, politics, or a woman.

Those at leastmake SENSE.

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