Saturday, October 1, 2022

New Civilian Award Proposed for Parents Who Teach their Teenagers to Drive

I'll start this post off by pointing out that my wife taught our three sons how to drive. 

By the time they were old enough to drive I was burnt out teaching family members how to drive. But I digress. That's a post for another day.

I've been unable to come up with any stats on how many parents in America teach their children how to drive. As you are aware there's other options like paying someone else to take on the task.

But today I'm celebrating those daredevil parents who take their children out for their first driving experience.

Imagine the guts it takes to allow a teenager behind a wheel when their only driving experience was video game vehicles. Not everyone is that brave.

I think we need to come up with an award for those dedicated parents who don't even get combat pay for risking their lives. For instance, they could get free psychiatric care for life. 

Like nurses, teachers, and animal rescue workers, parent's contributions to society are seldom recognized nationwide.

Proposed Categories

** Most hours without vomiting from fear.

** Seizing control of the steering wheel at least once to avoid a head-on with another vehicle.

** Most obstacles narrowly missed in one lesson

** Parents that have taught the most offspring to drive (I think Mormons would have an edge in this category.)

** A category for parents who don't go crazy or develop nervous ticks after completing their mission.

As it stands, I have a nagging feeling there should be more categories. If you have any suggestions, please email me (richarddavestancliff@gmail.com

Friday, September 30, 2022

There's Never Been True Equality in America: Get Over It!

It's time to set the record straight.

When our ancestors created that sacred document known as the Constitution, it only applied to a narrow segment of people living in America at the time.

One of the most hypocritical statements in the Constitution states, "all men are equal." Having slaves - as many of the signers did - was considered okay. The dark-skinned slaves didn't count like other humans.

From the start, white-skinned people enjoyed their freedom and ability to govern themselves by creating a government that favored the wealthy and perpetrated their ideology.

One of their biggest mistakes the founders made was creating a stratum of government that did not have to adhere to the rules of the land. 

Thus, our flawed judiciary system came with lifetime appointments to the Supreme Court. Justices are nearly untouchable regardless of what laws or crimes they rack up. They can lie - see the three Trump justice appointees' confirmation hearings - and no one can do anything about it.

While we're looking at the warts in our democracy it's important to recognize that the president of the United States is above all laws. At least it feels that way right now. POTUS is equal to none (even a former one). And they are above all other Americans.

Our former president has graphically demonstrated that by not being held accountable yet after attempting a coup in 2021 against our republic. Despite six major court cases spanning years involving Trump's crimes, he's still not been indicted for anything.

I'm on a roll now.

This next ruling segment of society, politicians, lead a charmed life. They are seldom held accountable for their crimes (like cuddling up with generous corporations that reward them if they cast the right vote) and lack of conscience. 

I'm thinking of the GOP Freedom Caucus in the House. None of that group of crazies are being held accountable for their part in trying to overthrow our government despite mountains of evidence.

I know it sounds harsh saying there's never been true equality in our society. It doesn't make me hate America, however. I'm just recognizing reality and suggesting the fight for equality will always be waged because human beings are flawed.

In any society the super rich's influence spreads throughout government and the economy. It's just the reality of so-called civilizations. Wealth, power and influence has always been concentrated among the elite.

As it stands, as long as we remain a democracy that continues to seek equality despite the numerous challenges, we will maintain the title of the greatest democracy in the world today. 

Thursday, September 29, 2022

New GOP Guidelines: How to Pretend You're Not in a Cult When You Are a Card-Carrying Member

Right-wing politicians pretending they're patriots is nothing new. 

However, Trump's minions - in and out of government - have taken the next step and are happily embracing a cult.

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Cult - total devotion to one person or a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious.

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The common thread in all cults is a charismatic leader whose followers believe he/she can do no wrong. Enter Trump and MAGA. 

Here's the tricky part. We have MAGA pols in the House and the Senate. They play a game where they tell people they are the one's protecting the Constitution.

In fact, with the backing of Trump judges right up to the Supreme Court, they are doing just the opposite. Crushing precedents that protect people's freedoms is just one example.

Like Jekyll and Hyde, these MAGA pols show the general public one face, and then turn around and show their other face to the base.

Republicans once known as the party of conservatives have slipped into a quagmire of conspiracies churned out by our former president since he lost the 2020 election. What's more they worship Trump with mindless devotion.

According to new GOP guidelines there's proper responses to feed the mainstream media. Some examples.

Reporter - "Did Trump lose the election?" 

Trumpie - "It's debatable. There was so much fraud who can tell for sure?"

Reporter - "Who's the president of the United States?"

Trumpie - "Where are Hillary Clintons emails?"

Reporter - "Do you believe in Climate change?"

Trumpie - Hunter Biden should be charged for... (take your pick) Treason, Money Laundering, or being the son of President Joe Biden.

As it Stands, after considerable research I've been unable to locate where MAGA Membership cards are being printed. Footnote, put $20.00 down on China for me.

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Is America Achieving Gun Nirvana?

The typical gun owner in America has long been a white conservative. 

But the times, they are changing.

In recent years, liberals, females and minorities have been purchasing guns in increasing numbers.

The NRA has to be ecstatic about the newly expanding market. Traditionally the gun manufactures had to gin up sales by having their political lackies create fear among people that someone was going to take their guns away.

They still do that, of course, but this new customer demand for guns is a godsend to the industry.

All of which makes me wonder if we are entering an era where happiness, is indeed a warm gun. This new segment of society's interest in owning guns will solidify our world standing as the country where guns are as common as tattoos.

This sudden slide into a gun utopia reflects (among other things) how insecure liberals, women and minorities have become. They feel like they have to stand up to conservatives and MAGA morons who are roaming the country spreading increasing violence.

I wonder... will this national arms race end up bringing Americans together in defense of democracy? Will it end in a standoff?

Or will it end up being the civil war that political pundits have been warning about in the last five years?

America's love affair with guns is in the national DNA. We used them to achieve independence against a monarchy. Many Americans feel owning guns is a guarantee to preserving their freedom.

As it stands, apparently it doesn't matter how many Americans kill other Americans, as long as gun manufactures thrive, and fear remains a sales tool. Welcome to gun nirvana.

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Riddle Me This: What Rooms Do Ghosts Avoid?

The answer to the above headline is "The Living Room" of course!

Yea, I know. It's corny. But riddles are fun if you like mental challenges. And who doesn't? (Answer - Trump supporters).

Here we go (Answers at bottom)

1.  David's father has three sons: Snap, Crackle, and _______? 

2.  Can you name three consecutive days without using the words Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday?

3.  The more you take, the more you leave behind. What am I?

4.  I am not alive, but I grow; I don't have lungs, but I need air; I don't have a mouth, but water kills me. What am I?

5.  When does Christmas come before Thanksgiving?

6.  What has many keys, but can't even open a single door?

7.  I make two people out of one. What am I?

8.  What's more useful when it is broken?

9.  Why is Europe like a frying pan?

10. What runs around the whole yard without moving?

      Here's some links to Riddle Categories

Classic Riddles

Jokes and Riddles

Math Riddles

Video Riddles

What is it? Riddles

Riddles for adults

Answers

1.  David

2.  Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow.

3.  Footsteps

4.  Fire

5.  In the dictionary.

6.  A piano.

7.  A mirror 

8.  An egg.

9.  Because it has Greece at the bottom.

10. A fence. 

(From 100 Best Riddles)

As it stands, I always thought Batman's foe, The Riddler, was the best villain he confronted. 

Monday, September 26, 2022

Are You Crazy and Brave Enough to Do Something No One Else Has Ever Done?

I'm still in awe of a 14-year-old Alberta, Canada, girl who set a new Guinness World Record by pulling 22 socks onto her foot in 30 seconds last month.

But I doubt if her feat (pun intended) will be remembered by too many people.

Every time I read the things people do to get their names into the Guinness World Record book I'm struck by the inspirations and determination it takes to stand out for one glorious moment of recognition.

You may have heard that John Cena set a Guiness Record for the most wishes granted a day ago. He made the wishes come true for 650 children from the Make-A-Wish Foundation. 

I'm puzzled by this next Guiness record that was set a week ago. Apparently, someone confirmed the flight of Queen Elizabeth II's coffin from Scotland to London as the most tracked ever.

Do you realize that this record was once held by Santa Claus? Not really. But you never know.

One man's determination to go further than anyone else in a giant pumpkin down the Missouri River paid off with a new Guiness record in August. 

Duane Hanson (photo above) spent 11 hours paddling the 38 miles to Nebraska City. 

He broke Rick Swenson's record which was 25 miles which was set in 2016.

I'm always interested in food records. 

The following record was set by a very ambitious chef.

(PHOTO - Leigh Evans poses with his gigantic vegetarian creation Clarence) Court/SWNS

Leigh Evan's scotch ostrich eggs which took 90 minutes to cook and weighed a bit over 17 pounds was formerly inducted into Guiness lore.

Are you getting inspired enough to take on a challenge? 

November 17th is a celebration of Guiness World Records Day. See if you can come up with a record-setting idea and consider the holiday as the starting gun for your project.

The holiday encourages you to stretch the ends of human endurance and creativity. Heck! Even animals can set world records.

 Back in 2018 a miniature pig named Joy performed the most tricks in a minute (13). She did this under the careful scrutiny of two Iowa judges - Newton City's Mayor and chief of police.  

The skies are no limit for some challenge takers. Take a look at David Rush of Idaho who has set 52 world records. Among them he won the world's fastest juggler and the world's slowest juggler!

As it stands, I have to confess I've never set a world record and my wife's claim that I'm the laziest man in the world has yet to be verified.

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Everybody is Waiting for Something

The world's optimists are waiting for a global kumbaya heralding universal Peace. 

Americans are waiting for Trump to be held accountable for his numerous crimes and attempt to overthrow the 2020 election.

Humanity is waiting for cures for numerous deadly diseases like cancer.

Lawarence Ferlinghetti is still waiting for a rebirth of wonder.

Cartoon fans are still waiting for Willie J. Coyote to catch the roadrunner.

Animal and environmental activists are waiting for forests and animals to reclaim the earth as theirs.

Eric Trump is still waiting for his dad's approval.

Republicans are waiting to take the House of Representatives back so they can go on an extended revenge tour.

Quasi-Militias are waiting for the big day when anarchy breaks out in every state.

Legal eagles are waiting for the day that the Supreme Court justices will stop destroying precedent in our judicial system.

Millions of Americans are waiting for food and lodging that doesn't always come.

MAGA minions are eagerly waiting for Trump to declare he's running for president again in 2024.

Flat Earth devotees are waiting to fall off the edge of the planet and become stardust.

Foxes patiently wait for the chickens to come home before raiding their coops.

Monster hunters are still waiting to catch the elusive Bigfoot.

Fishermen are ready to wait all day to get a good catch.

Long lines of people don't mind waiting to get inside to see a live Broadway Play.

As it stands, I'm still waiting for the Great American novel to suddenly appear to me fully edited.

Saturday, September 24, 2022

I'm Waiting For the Healing to Begin

America is like a wounded animal trying to tell a human where it hurts without sucess.

Our society is suffering the torture of a thousand cuts dividing us into hostile tribes. Hate, anger and fear roam unabated as the lines of communication continue to breakdown.

It has to stop.

There are some resources for people who have anger issues. We just need more. 

Groups like Haven House are doing their best, but their often limited by finances. The group provides a sounding board to work and grow with. I'm in no way endorsing the group by sharing their mission. It's just one of many options out there.

There are online anger management courses that provide free help for those who want to avoid group therapy. The drawback is the lack of fellowship and sense of belonging.

What's the problem with these options?

Have you ever tried to lead a donkey to water when it doesn't want to go?

Unfortunately, people with anger issues generally have other mental issues and getting them help is a major challenge. Friends and family have to be part of the equation.

Awareness is the key to solving problems regardless of what they are. 

There is a national campaign founded by Tipper Gore called Mental Health Awarenessbut frankly who's ever heard of it? It was launched in 1999 by the White House.

President Joe Biden has advanced an agenda of prioritizing and supporting bills that offer help for the mental health crisis we're currently suffering in this country. 

He signed the "Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Act," in March of 2021. The new law provides $135 million in federal funding for mental health education and awareness campaigns.

As it stands, I'm waiting for the mental healing to begin as lines of communications between political parties and individuals go through a positive transformation that will hopefully save the sanity of our country.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Check Out Today's Episode of 'Politicians Say the Darnest Things'

Welcome!

Step right in. Take a seat. When you're comfortable continue.

This first quote is my favorite.

According to Trump"...if you're the President of the United States, you can declassify by just saying it's declassified, even by thinking about it."

I believe psychiatrists call that "magic thinking." 

Who can forget Ted Cruz yelling in the airport "Do you know who I am?" The funny part, according to Matt Blair, is the very idea that the average person would treat him better after learning that he is Ted Cruz.

Here's a real dinger from Marjorie Taylor Greene for you, "President Trump taught us how to defend our values.

I was really surprised she wasn't struck down by lightning despite being indoors.

Vying with Greene for the dumbest woman in Congress, Lauren Boebert was speaking about the importance of guns in America during a Newsmax interview with Sebastian Gorka.

"Americans will be eating dogs, like in Venezuela, if they take our guns away!" she warned the extremist viewers.

Frankly, I don't even know what to say about that...

Here's some classic political jokes

** Bill Clinton on Being President, "Being president is like running a cemetery: you've got a lot of people under you and nobody's listening."

** Lyndon Johnson on Being President, "Being president is like being a jackass in a hailstorm. There's nothing to do but to stand there and take it."

** Barack Obama on Dick Cheney, "I don't want to be invited to the family hunting party."

** Ronald Reagan on Age, "I want you to know that I will not make age an issue of this campaign. I am not going to exploit, for political purposes, my opponent's youth and inexperience." 

** Jim Hightower on George Bush, "If ignorance goes to forty dollars a barrel, I want drilling rights to George Bush's head."

(Editor's note: Jim is a syndicated columnist, progressive political activist, and author. He qualifies as a politician after serving as the elected commissioner of the Texas Department of Agriculture from 1983 to 1991.)

** Franklin Roosevelt on Conservatives, "A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward."

As it stands, look for future episodes when I share the darnest things that MAGA Morons say, and quotes from other segments of society that will provide amusement for all of you loyal readers.

Thursday, September 22, 2022

The Inscrutable Worlds of the Federal Reserve, Cryptocurrency, and NFTs

Be honest.

Do you fully understand how we're going to beat inflation by raising interest rates? 

The Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate by 0.75 percentage points Wednesday.

Financial experts were divided how much the increase would help. All lot of common Americans, like myself, are wondering how raising the cost of buying homes and cars is going to deliver us from inflation?

The whole idea seems counterintuitive, but I'm no bean counter with years of arcane knowledge about how to manipulate our monetary system.

Don't even get me started about the whole cryptocurrency thing! It's insane claiming digital crypto is a secure way to make monetary transactions. It also doesn't rely on banks to verify transactions.

The thing to remember is if you buy cryptocurrency, you don't own anything tangible. To top that off grifters from celebrities to sports figures, are involved in scams to entice you to throw good money away.

Here's something you should know:

If you see a tweet (or text, email, or other message on social media) that tells you to pay with cryptocurrency... it's a scam.

NFTs are Shaking up the Art World

If you aren't familiar with what NFTs are, wonder no more. They are an emerging digital technology called tokens that are tied to assets that can be bought, sold and traded.

The art world has gone gaga over these tokens that are making artists rich. Collectors and speculators have spent millions on an array of NFT-based artwork, memes and GIFs since the fad started.

NFTs are best understood as computer files with proof of ownership and authenticity, like a deed.

Which brings me to the inevitable conclusion that unlike baseball cards, you can't hold them and frankly who's going to see your precious NFTs? 

I'm aware that there's a digital marketplace for these tokens/files, but the average person will never see your collection.

One more thing to keep in mind, like most online activities' that involve money scammers lurk behind keyboards waiting to rip you off. 

As it stands, remember, these NFTs are a passing fad for people with money to burn.

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

On Internation Peace Day: President Biden Spoke to UN Assembly About Threats to World Peace

Yesterday was International Peace Day and the president of the United States talked about preserving peace around the world. 

President Biden came through loud and clear during the UN General Assembly warning, "Russia has shamelessly violated the core tenets of the UN charter.

"Russia," he contended, "has ignored the clear prohibition against countries taking the territory of their neighbors by force."

In 30 minutes, Biden explained that the war in Ukraine was about "extinguishing Ukraine's right to exist as a state... and Ukraine's right to exist as a people."

Over two hundred world leaders heard Biden's response to Russia who threatened to start a nuclear war now that their invasion of Ukraine has stalled.

Pointing out the obvious Biden said, "A nuclear war can never be won and must never be fought."

At the same time Biden promised to continue sending arms and food supplies to the Ukraine, while making it clear to Putin his threats aren't going to accomplish anything other than to tighten the alliance against him.

A brief background on the International Day of Peace.

In 1981, the UN General Assembly declared the third Tuesday of September as an International Day of Peace. Two decades later the assembly moved the day to September 21st. 

The observance was supposed to be a time to discuss how to promote and maintain peace among all peoples and calls for a 24-hour period of global ceasefire and non-violence for groups in active combat.

As it stands, Russia has become a rogue state violating all international laws and agreements. Dealing with Putin is something the assembly prioritized today.

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

When They Come for the Books, You Know We're in Trouble

Hold on to your book, here comes Moms for Liberty! a group of extremists spawned in the Florida swamps.

They are among similar groups across America with a burning mission; ban all books they disagree with.

These groups have made it their mission to undermine educators, sabotage students' freedom to read and stoke divisive battles that distract from teaching and learning.

Some of those groups espouse Christian nationalist political views. 

Their goal is to infiltrate public schools with religious education despite the fact it's a violation of the Constitution - regarding separation of church and government.

An alarming report was released by PEN America on Monday that updated how many books were banned in the last year. There were 2,532 book bans directed at 1,648 different titles.

Johnan Friedman, the director of PEN America's free expression and education programs and author of the report, said that in the past decade "there was never organization at this scale with this much momentum." 

Particularly pernicious is the fact that the groups are not led by concerned parents. Instead, extreme conservatives who only learned about the books online without reading them are demanding officials remove them from the shelves.

The majority of the groups can be found online from local Facebook pages or groups of established conservative organizations.

The groups all have one thing in common, they're angry and frustrated over school closures, mask mandates, and vaccines. 

Throw in an extra dose of racism and anti LGBTQ beliefs, and you have one toxic brew spreading through the nation's school systems.

We must not forget history when Nazis infiltrated Germany's schools and taught little children to hate Jews. It's the same thing here.

As it stands, when they come for the books, you know we're in trouble.

Monday, September 19, 2022

Growing Old Does Have Its Benefits I Tell Myself

After 70-plus years I've grudgingly accepted the fact that I'm old. That doesn't mean I'm going to go quietly into the night and stop living.

Sometimes I cringe when I recall my youth when the thought of getting older meant opening the doors to the kingdom. A ten-year old me grousing "When I grow up, I'll do whatever I want."

Add six decades and now my views on growing older have changed. In private moments I fondly remember the stupidity of youth. What George Bernard Shaw once said is so true, "Youth is a wonderful thing. What a crime to waste it on children."

Advantages to being a (sigh) Senior

1. You quit worrying about how you look because you just don't care what people think after all of those years. I can walk around in the supermarket wearing slippers and stripped shorts with my t-shirt inside out and not feel uncomfortable.

2. Around 65 years old you become an official senior and the corporate world offers you extra discounts on products, services, and entertainment. 

3. People expect you to be grouchy and I try not to disappoint them.

4. Sometimes people give up their seats so that seniors can sit. However, we can't always count on it like in past decades.

5. Age brings experience and wisdom. Up to a point. I've seen plenty of dumb seniors - think MAGA cult core - that live in a bubble of ignorance and lies.

6. Retired seniors don't have bosses telling them what to do and when they can take a vacation.

On Growing Old

Abraham Lincoln - "In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years."

Henry Ford - "Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young."

Henry David Thoreau - "None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm."

Walt Disney - Growing old is mandatory but growing up is optional." 

----------------------------------------------------

As it stands, I should point out that being 71 years-old has changed my social classification from just a plain old senior to a Septuagenarian... which (truth be told) sounds like some kind of dinosaur!

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Sometimes There's a Glitch in the Matrix and Doppelganger's Meet

Just to be clear a doppelganger is a biologically unrelated look-alike, or a double, of a living person.

We seldom ever meet our own doppelganger but when it does happen it's because of a glitch in the matrix as far as I can tell.

The German word doppelganger is often portrayed in fiction and mythology as a ghostly or paranormal phenomenon and usually seen as a sign of bad luck.

In modern times, the term twin stranger is occasionally used. Thye word doppelganger is often used in a more general and neutral sense, and in slang.

There's quite the history behind examples of people meeting their doppelgangers. One of the earliest accounts appears in the edition of Life of Dr. Rizvan Rizing published in 1675 in Paris.

I just read about a man in Las Vegas who met his doppelganger in the pool at The Flamingo.

Sean Douglas McArdle (pictured here) was stunned to see someone who looked exactly like he did, right down to the same horn-rimmed spectacles and cap they both had on. 

With the advent of social media more people are finding their doppelgangers every day. There are several websites where users can upload a photo of themselves and facial recognition software attempts to match them up with another user of the same appearance.

I cannot imagine what it would be like running into someone that looks just like me. My first reaction would probably be regret for all those years I did LSD!

Seriously though. It would have to be an unnerving experience. Even more unnerving is the thought that Trump and the crazy caucus all have doubles slinking around somewhere! I don't even want to go there.

As it stands, doppelgangers and twins have a lot in common with the exception of not having the same parents.

Saturday, September 17, 2022

Never Ending Story: Yeet! American Dictionary Grows Every Year

Linguistic scholars generally agree Mandarin and English are two of the toughest languages in the world to learn.

Rather than go into the multiple reasons why let's focus in on the English language and why I think it's tougher than Mandarin... for one big reason.

We annually add words and phrases to our dictionaries making it nearly impossible to keep up with Mirriam-Webster's continual additions. I'm still waiting for Trumpism to slink into our lexicon.

The good news is that many of those new words and phrases can be amusing, inspirational and even provoke debate.

This year 370 words and phrases were added. Here's three of my favorite words:

** Yeet - it either means "used to express surprise, approval, and excited enthusiasm," or as a verb it means "to throw especially with force and without regard for the thing being thrown."

** Shrinkflation - is now a household word thanks to a newspaper publisher from Massachusetts who defined the word as "the practice of reducing a product's amount of volume per unit while continuing to offer it at the same price."

**Adorkable - combine dorky and adorable and you have "socially awkward or quirky in a way that is endearing."

ICYMI which is short for "in case you missed it" also made the cut this year. Finding out that Pumpkin Spice was just added surprised me somewhat. I would have thought it made the cut a long time ago.

According to Merriam Webster's editor at large, "Words offer a window into our ever-changing language and culture and are only added to the dictionary when there is clear and sustained evidence of use."

As it stands, if that's true, why hasn't Trumpism been added yet? It's been around for years? I'm suspicious of their methodology.

Friday, September 16, 2022

Pet Bills in Congress Not Likely to Pass Anytime Soon Unless Animals Given the Right to Vote

Democrats and Republicans love animals.
 
Bipartisan support for their welfare is commonplace. 

Just don't expect any legislation to slide through Congress soon.

Meanwhile...

California Rep. Tony Cardenas is going to host a meet-and-greet with some of the beagles rescued from Virginia to highlight his proposed bill, the Companion Animal Release from Experiments (CARE) Act.

The bill requires NIH-funded research facilities to implement post-adoption policies for dogs, cats and rabbits.

I suspect it will pass through Congress without any notable friction if they ever bring the bill up. But that's the problem. There are five other well-meaning animal bills that are sitting on the bottom of future bills yet to be considered.

* The Planning for Animal Wellness Act

* Right Whale Coexistence Act

* The Shark Fin Sales Elimination Act

* The Big Cat Safety Act

and

* The Beat Poaching Elimination Act

It's obvious (to me) that animals don't vote in the midterms, or those bills might have garnered some consideration. 

Which leads to my proposal of allowing animals to vote using a system where their owners are their proxies and will be allowed to fill out all forms and cast a ballot.

Imagine what a pet friendly nation we'll become after introducing such progressive legislation?

My dogs Molly and Butters think it's a great idea.

As it stands, the idea of electing pets puts a real interesting spin on future elections - Elect Fido and Get Free Bones with Meat still on them! 

Thursday, September 15, 2022

Political Plants Put the Garden of Democracy in Peril

According to Biblical accounts a snake (representing the devil) slithered into the Garden of Eden and tempted Eve to take a bite out of a forbidden apple. She did. After that everything went to hell in a handbasket.

More than one snake has slithered into America's Garden of Democracy threatening the republic.

Right-wing extremists like Trump and his supporters, seeded Congress, federal judge ships, and state political positions for years with upcoming wackos loyal to a totalitarian rule. Now in full bloom the deadly plants are invading the American political landscape.

Like unwanted weeds MAGA morons are running for more political offices than ever before. The general feeling being there's enough MAGA gardeners right now to nurture the spread of Trumpism and to overthrow democracy.

For the sake of our nation's future the spread of misinformation from these political plants has to be exposed and dealt with by the Department of Justice.

That fight is in progress.

How far the investigations go will have a lot to do with the midterms. If the Democrats hold Congress, the chance of cleaning our Democratic Garden greatly improves.

If the Democrats only keep the Senate but loose the House, MAGA gardeners will be able to spread their seeds of sedition even further.

Some of the current full-grown MAGA plants in Congress are facing investigations into their roles in the Jan. 6 coup attempt. Others will have to fight off being pulled from Congress in the Fall midterms by motivated Democratic voters.

As it stands, historically Americans have had to defend our Garden of Democracy against multiple enemies. The good news is we're still here tending to the Garden.

Wednesday, September 14, 2022

Can We Just Get Past Mourning for a British Monarch?

Why are all the major US news organizations covering the death of Queen Elizabeth in such fawning detail?

With everything happening in America today we're being dish fed massive TV coverage highlighting the hauling of the old gal's body around for endless ceremonies. The actual funeral isn't even until next week.

Pause.

Didn't we fight a war of independence and break away from the overbearing monarchy across the sea? The last thing Americans wanted to see was a monarchy. Democracy overcame the British monarchy, and we were freed of all that royal bullshit.

Yet here we are in 2022 mourning the loss of a monarch like it's the most important thing for Americans to pay attention to despite upcoming midterms and countless lawsuits against a former president intent on destroying democracy.

This fascination for English royals is especially stupid today because the whole family are cretins born with silver spoons in their tight lips. 

Think about it. You have an accused pedophile prince and his brother, a cranky and eccentric King who accepted suitcases and bags stuffed with $3.2 million in cash from the former prime minister of Qatar, and who has millions stashed in offshore accounts.

We can't forget the queen's late husband Prince Philip, who died in 2021, was notorious for making racists and sexist remarks. He described Beijing, for example, as "ghastly" during a 1986 visit and told British students "If you stay here much longer, you'll all be slitty eyed."

Lest we forget monarchy obscures the crimes of empire and wraps them in nostalgia.

Those Americans glued to their TVs waiting to see who gets the late queen's Corgis are a mystery to me. I'll admit it.

One passing thought I had was that after the Revolutionary War there were a lot of British loyalists who stayed in the colonies. Perhaps today's royal followers in the US are descendants of theirs.

I also believe that when we allied with England during World War I and II a lot of cross continent marriages occurred possibly adding to the goodwill we see today between the two countries.

None of the above fully explains the mind-numbing coverage devoted to the queen's death and ascension of their new king, who by the way, I suspect isn't going to be a popular monarch.

As it stands, all of that pomp and pageantry is a mere puffery trying to preserve another time in history.

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

The Ig Nobel Prizes: A Sidewise Look at Some Scientist's Silly Research

You may not have heard of this breathtaking scientific study that came out of the Ecole Nationale de Toulouse, France, so I'll share it with you.

Proud researchers have determined which type of flea - the dog flea and the cat flea - can jump higher! How exciting is that? Also, how many millions of dollars were spent to find out that the dog flea is the jumping champion of the animal kingdom? 

The innovative research team was awarded the Annals of Improbable Research's Ig Nobel Prize in 2008 under the biology category. The reward was created by Marc Abrahams to recognize the feats of those who "make people laugh," and then think.

One of my favorite Ig Nobel Award recipients was the team of researchers from the University of Bern whose seminal research paper on Beer vs Human Skull got a lot of attention in 2009.

The big questions were which would cause the most damage? A full or empty beer bottle? And which one would fracture a human skull?

When you stop laughing, I'll continue...

Dr. Stephen Bolliger and his colleagues tested the breaking energy of full and empty bottles using a drop tower. No surprise. The full bottle strikes a target with 70% more energy than an empty one.

Just think what a moment that must have been! The sheer joy of discovery! One more observation; both bottles will fracture a skull.

If you think that was exciting wait till you read about the 2002 research paper by Stefano Ghirlanda, Liselotte Jansson and Magnus Enquist at Stockholm University.

These dedicated devotees of science have answered the age-old question... "Do chickens prefer beautiful humans?

The researchers trained six chickens to "react" to images of ordinary male and female faces. The chickens were tested on a series of images ranging from the average face to a face with exaggerated male and female characteristics.

Surprisingly (maybe not to the chickens) the team claimed they showed preferences for faces consistent with human sexual preferences.

Some other award winners over the years  

** Can Pigeons Tell a Picasso from a Monet? (1995)

** The Nature of Navel Lint (2009)

** The Effects of Cocaine on Bees (2009)

** Fruit Bat Fellatio (2009)

** Does Country Music Make You Suicidal? (1992)

** Do Cabbies Have Bigger Brains? (2011)

** Flatulence as a Self-Defense (1996)

As it Stands, I hope you enjoyed this moment of levity.

Monday, September 12, 2022

Let's Have Some Fun Playing Solve that Trump Mystery

Do you like mysteries?

Do you have fun trying to solve mysteries big and small?

This post is for you.

Today's Mystery

Why did Trump flee from New Jersey Sunday night, and fly to Washington DC?

He was spotted leaving from Morrison Municipal Airport in New Jersey and landing at Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia. When he got off the plane observers noticed he was looking bedraggled as he disembarked down the stairs.

Even more curious he was still wearing golf shoes and carrying a hat like he was abruptly taken off his golf course in Bedminster.

What was the hurry? And why go to Washington DC, a place he's shunned since getting booted out of office?

Naturally, theories abound like free range rabbits in a no-hunting zone.

1. Trump may have gotten word his club was going to be searched by the FBI and took off like a scared rabbit.

The question still hanging out there like a hanging chad in Florida's infamous presidential recount is why go to Washington DC at all?

2. Trump was going to Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland for medical reasons.

One question remains with this guess; why he would go that far when he could go to any hospital in the area and have the government pick up the tab?

3. Trump flew to Washington DC to settle for a negotiated self-surrender that involves not going to jail.

I have a problem imagining Trump surrendering to anybody. Journalist Maggie Haberman has a book coming out about how Trump was going to refuse to leave the White House, according to numerous aides.

Does surrendering to anyone sound like our treasonous former president? 

The three guesses above are a consensus of theories trending on Twitter. What do you think?

I've read and heard some pretty crazy guesses coming from Trump's minions, which is of course to be expected. After all there is an alternate universe operating in the country that needs fed.

I think my favorite wacko theory is Trump flew to Washington DC to take over the reins of the government because Joe Biden was exposed as a traitor to the nation. Trump didn't have time to change clothes before answering his country's call.

Back to reality.

One more strange thing I forgot to mention: as of the time I posted this... Trump hasn't said a word on his fake Twitter (Truth) account or anywhere else.

It's just not like Donny to pass up his daily ranting sessionEveryone agrees that the whole thing is weird. 

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(NEWS UPDATE: Trump holds private meet with his lawyers at his golf course in Sterling, Virginia. No one brought golf clubs!) 

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As it stands, like any good mystery I expect some entertaining twists and turns before we know the answer.

Sunday, September 11, 2022

'Conspiracies R Us' Goes Public: Shares Being Sold in Time for Midterms

What a day for trolls!

After six years of growth in red states "Conspiracies R Us" has officially moved into Wall Street where corruption is rewarded.

According to legal eagles "Conspiracies R Us" was founded in 2016. The founder, Donald. J. Trump had a pipeline into the crazy community (being president and all) and was pumping out rumors and lies daily to his supporters.

His brick-and-mortar stores are full of illustrated books about Trump's humble upbringings and rise to sainthood in Red States. And so much more.

There's a number of reasons why the franchise is growing rapidly, but the scariest is knowing there's millions of wackos who are just discovering "Conspiracies R Us" as they spring up like poisonous toadstools across the country.

Don't quote me here, but I heard a rumor that a new extremist store chain called "The Sedition Corner" is opening up in Florida so its founder Gov. Ron DeSantis can make it his campaign headquarters.  

Meanwhile you're probably wondering what else can be found in "Conspiracies R Us?"

Imagine what troll heaven must look like. Yep. A building with TVs on every wall so Trump minions can listen to old and new conspiracy theories. Rows of computer stations featuring the best of the dark web are discreetly hidden behind curtains. 

Trump's merchandize from T-Shirts to sets of extra-large plastic hands hang from the walls. Posters hailing the return of JFK to coronate King Trump to photo-shopped images of Rambo with Trump's head on top cover the ceiling.

The piped in music ranges from "All Hail Master Trump" to "God Bless His Majesty Trump."

Contributing to the store's popularity is the fact they have special discounts for late night dwellers and stalkers because their open 24 hours a day.

One popular new video displaying Democrats as murderers, pedophiles, and godless creatin's, is now on sale in time for the midterm elections.

Another way the stores create excitement is by having monthly prize drawings for in store shoppers. Last month's prize winner got a scaled down version of Mount Rushmore with Trumps mug added next to Lincoln's head.

Canny stock investors are aware that Trump's foray into the stock market will eventually turn out to be just another pump and dump enterprise following a history of bankruptcies, fraudulent charitable foundations, and a rip-off university that ended up being sued and paying back students.

Despite that, some brokers will buy into the scheme and purchase stock hoping to dump it for a profit before the business inevitably collapses.

As it stands, if you want to raise money for your public campaign to be an elected official just tell your supporters to shop at "Conspiracies R Us" and that you sent them!

New Civilian Award Proposed for Parents Who Teach their Teenagers to Drive

I'll start this post off by pointing out that my wife taught our three sons how to drive.  By the time they were old enough to drive I ...