Political Fan Bases & Religion

Hillary Clinton’s desperation is quite sad.

She was begging for votes the other day, not cool for a Clinton for m everything always seems go swimmingly. Or so it would appear. Hill even toted out Madeline Albright as a shill. Really? Most of the younger voters she so covets weren’t even born when Maddie was wearing ugly broaches in prime time.

So, is Hillary’s campaign in crisis? Well kids, I’m really not qualified to opine, BUT as a former broadcast journalist with 30 years in the trenches, I can recognize fear in someone’s eyes.

And what’s scaring Hillary her is an older, rather frail, balding, hunchbacked zayde of a man. No, not her husband, Bill Clinton.

It’s Bernie Sanders.

I watch his campaign stumps and notice the audience, filled with 20-somethings all gacked out on this age appropriate idealism. My first instinct is to tell them, enjoy it now.

I was only four when President John Kennedy was killed, but I’m something of an assassination buff and have spent a lot of time reading and You-Tubing his life. His audiences remind me of those who clamor for The Bern. Kennedy won because he wasn’t Dwight Eisenhauer. It didn’t hurt that he was young and handsome when compared to those who held the office before him. He had a well-heeled young wife who loved art and history and couture. Her style was mind blowing in her time. Together, they had two cute young kids. He came from a large family who was already storied back in 1963. He also had dreams and goals and that spoke to baby boomers, most just entering the legal age to vote.

I see the same zeal in Bernie zealots. Personally, I’m too jaded to believe all that Sanders is feeding his minions. Over the years, I’ve heard all the campaign promises and my lifetime, I think the ONLY president that ever kept a real, campaign promise was Lyndon Johnson. He established the Great Society which in part, gave all of our Black brothers and sisters the right to vote without suppression of any kind.

Hillary can beg to differ but she is establishment and her audience it seems, reflects thst. They appear to be mostly older females. I don’t chide these broads. They’re not that much older than me and they were probably the first ones to burn their bras while freely burning a big fattie. These women were gender suffragettes during the ERA years. I respect them, but Hillary can’t win with this demographic. Even when her husband comes out swinging. As I mentioned above, is Cltinon version 5.0. He’s not that much younger than Bernie and he looks it. In Texas, we say “he looks road hard and hung up wet”. Then again, nothing ages you more than eight years in the Oval Office. Take one look at Obama’s ever-growing jowels.

To me, the vocal minority of Trump fans seem to be blue collar white guys. Late 40’s and up. Lots of gimme caps.

Rubio’s fan-base? Looks mixed to me.

Bush? I glance at is audience and it appears to be comprised of older people who are mostly pale skinned. If younger, they’re preppies.

Cruz? See above.

Kasich, Fiorina and Dr. Ben? To be honest, I’m not sure I’ve seen any coverage of their events to opine.

So, let’s segue to the candidates’ religions. Not that it matters, but I’ll make a point about that in a bit. Trump is Christian, Hillary is Mathodist. Kasich is Anglican. Dr. Carson is a Seventh Day Adventist. Fiorina is currently a non-dnominational Christian. Cruz is an Evangelical with Southern Baptist ties. Bush, Rubio and Christie are Catholic and Bernie Sanders is the first Jewish contender for president. Now, this makes for some interesting dissonance–Bernie is married to a non-Jewish woman, which according to Jewish law, makes his grandchildren non-Jewish. Trump’s daughter Ivanka converted to Judaism before getting married, making his grandchildren Jewish.

Fortunately for most thinking people, religion today is a sidebar within a footnote. Now, what candidates believe has become more more important than how they practice their beliefsis. We’ve certainly evolved as an electorate since 1960. That’s when Kennedy ran against Nixon and won, making him the very first Catholic elected into executive office and it didn’t come without bigoted drama. There were a lot of people who were actually scared of any political repercussions due to Kennedys perceived links to The Vatican.

Really, it’s all quite laughable all these years later.

The Latest GOP Debate

I watched the whole thing.

Political commentary will appear shortly. I must start this post with a comment about one of the under-moderators and one of the candidates particularly and all of them, generally. These comments come from from a purely broadcasting POV.

1)–Josh McElveen, is a Political Director or Reporter, probably both at a station in the tiny TV market of Manchester, NH. Did you hear him speak? A slightly more masculine version of Greta van Sustern, hand to God. He swallowed every suffix. I had a hard time understanding him.

2–Will someone in Gov. Chris Christie’s campaign PLEASE teach him something/anything about popping his “P’s” into the microphone??? It’s annoying on a Karsahsian level. And here’s a hint for every candidate and amplifted public speaker in the world–please understand the sensitivity of the microphones and how pounding points home on the podiums (pop THAT Christie!!) are audible through the mics. Oy, I’ve heard less thumping and pounding in the rap music the all the kids today seem to love. It was as if Snoop MC Cool Ice moved in next door.

Sorry…I watched Larry David host Saturday Night Live.

So, on a serious, more goyish note, I’d have to say Marco Rubio lost the debate as much Christie won it. The Jersey Boy was on a mission and needed to win the debate as much as Peyton Manning wants another certain gold ring. Watching Rubio’s repetitive use of the Obama phrase on a continuous loop, is painful to watch. FOX News has been skewering him. Despite his microphone and pronunciation issues, I’ve always liked Christie, but prior to Saturday night’s debate, it was never enough for me to vote for him. He’s winning me over.

I was supporting Rubio, but during the broadcast, I could clearly see his Boy Scout milk mustache on his upper lip. The child needs more political seasoning. I feel that the 2020’s will be his decade.

Bush? Nice guy I suppose, but his last name is a burden in this political climate and yeah, I voted for his brother…twice.

Cruz? Meh.

Kasich? Dr. Ben? Fiorina? The Professor and Mary Ann? Footnotes.

Trump? Liked him too—in the beginning when his shtick was novel. But it’s growing tiresome. I’m losing my political patience as I get older and Trump’s behavior and comments have become cringeworthy for me. As for his popularity on the Internet, online searches and debate results polls? I’m a Republican, but I’ll admit, his incessant perch high atop the American political consciousness reminds me how the unshorn, creepy Sanjay surged to 7th place on the sixth season of American Idol.

Sanjay probably did it old school back in 2009, but hey, having the financial access to all the latest campaign hardware ever made is worth the investment.

The Cursing of Donald Trump

Trump said fuck twice and shit once in a speech, not cussing into a mic he thought was dead, mind you…no, this was live and on purpose.

So?

It’s not the first time he’s cussed and it won’t be the last. And now, the opportunists are all over him just for saying what they all think, what the candidates all say off mic. With the exception of Dr. Ben Carson, perhaps.

“Golly, I can’t affix this endovacular detachable coil properly and by the way, that Donald Trump is a rapscallion.”

But Laurie, they’ll cry, godly people like Dr. Carson don’t cuss and neither do proper people of good breeding And certainly anyone seeking the office of president can’t call ISIS a bunch of pricks!!

Not in public.

But why not in public??? Isn’t this one of the secrets to Trump’s political success? He says what he thinks and often what we think? I’m not a 100-percent Trumpeter, but considering what the status quo hath wrought over the years, I like that he’s different. Personally, I would have LOVED it if in the subsequent days after 9/11, Bush would have stood on the smoking pile that was once the World Trade Center towers, and shouted into that bullhorn, “”And the motherfuckers who brought these buildings down will soon hear from all of us!!”

Look, I believe in free speech. I believe if free listening. You have a right to hear what you want and if that doesn’t include the dialogue of most Scorsese films, that’s fine. Not using profanity is fine. I believe in editing where needed but don’t give me the “kids were watching” argument. I doubt if anyone under the age of 43 watched Trump’s speech, but on the off chance any did, I feel certain they only heard the edited for broadcast version and if they caught the unedited version, they weren’t hearing anything new. I speak from experience.

In 1968, I was eight years old; prime time for a certain nine-year-old ginger headed friend to introduce me to the word and what it meant. She explained that the F word was verb and occured when a boy or girl touches the other person’s teetee—our catch all phrase for genitals. So, in my kid mind, I thought it included even the most innocent of contact. If that was the case, I was a whore. I’d recently learned to change a young cousin’s diaper. Yikes.

The whole thing had an air of Greek tragedy to it. But I soon learned all that was involved with the colloquialism and even how to use it properly.

And let’s just say, I learned well. I’ve always used expletives, it was like the decorations on a Christmas tree. Cussing punctuated emotions, expressed points in specific ways. But as worldly as I thought I was, first job in broadcasting made me feel as though I had virgin ears. I’ve heard stevedores cuss less. News people cuss with abundance. And so do politicians, bankers, truck drivers, teachers, chefs, athletes (every level), military types, Republiczns, Democrats…everyone. I realized the working world cusses a lot. I’ve heard poor people, wealthy folks, white collared/no collared can cuss a blue streak. Curse words of all persuasions are used as verbs, nouns and adjectives in movies, all over You Tube, in rap songs and the Stone Temple Pilots considered Jeremy to be a “harmless little F-word”, but he wasn’t, was he?

And as for cussing not being ‘presidential, well neither is cronyism, nepotism, graf, or having extramarital affairs.

White House interns are optional.

Greetings

There are few Latin terms or Latin sounding acronyms that don’t sound nasty.

Caucus. Sounds phallic, right?

POTUS and FLOTUS are two ords that sound as though they’d surrounded by an anus or two scribbled on some wall found in Ancient Rome. You know, graffiti.

Or grafitum.

We all know about the word caucus. The recent brouhaha in Iowa taught us caucus is Latin for “apparently not still not Huckabee’s year”.

POTUS and FLOTUS are acronyms, short for President of the U.S. And First Lady of the U.S., respectively.

When I was a reporter, the Associated Press was gospel—they were then official arbiters of journalistic style. I don’t know if the AP allows SCOTUS and FLOTUS after first reference. I’m too lazy to look it us, but I know this: President Barak Obama must be called that…what I just typed on first reference. In subsequent lines he can be called Mr. Obama or even Obama if the story is long enough and mentions him enough times.

But SCOTUS??? Would it even work in print?? I think it would. Imagine listening to Megan Kelly utter SCOTUS five times in one report?

Oooof. I thank the greater Cosmos that Iowa is over. I’d keel if I had to hear ANY newsperson mention the word caucus again. I’m relieved that the next big political term shoved down our throats will be primary. I can’t think think of any body part or bodily function that even remotely sounds like it.

But the worst…THE WORST sounding acronym in the world is right here in my own back yard.

“SCOTEX”

Yep, the shortened term for the “Supreme Court of Texas” sounds like a maxi-pad.

image

A Friday Montage

Wow. What’s up with this Zica virus? Scary stuff, right?

It’s been around since the 1950’s and believed to be related to Malaria, the West Nile virus and anyone in the Cyrus family (I am decidedly NOT a fan).

It’s also thought to be a principle cause of microcephaly (what’s also known as Pinhead Syndrome). Tiny head, normal body. Sometimes, there are intellectual and developmental issues, sometimes, not at all, but in Zica’s case, it basically turns the contents of the head into nothing more than mulch (my word, not a quote from anyone in a white coat) and the mortality rate is high.

It’s passed from daytime active mosquitoes, because, well, those skeeters with nightlives have things to do and pregnant women are susceptible. I can’t seem to find how it would affect those who are penised or crones or pre-pubescents.

I found this photo of the virus (see above) on the Zica Wikipedia article. It’s been magnified many times on an electron microscope and to be honest, I think it’s constructs form a piece of art. I’m thinking of a marriage of styles between Pollock snd Kandinsky.

*

I’m annoyed by politics. Ted Cruz is irritating. Ben Carson is a non-event. Carly Fiorina is too robotic. Trump is Trunp. Santorum has a Latin last name and that’s all I know about him. On Young Rubio lapel, you can still see Boy Scout merit badges.

Bernie Sanders is every bubbe on the planet and if elected, conversations with his Cabinent on defense spending will inevitably turn into 72 minute arguments over which Washington area deli serves the best pastrami.

Hillary? Why isn’t she in a orange jumpsuit?

*

I don’t know the source of the following, but it was sent to me via e-mail.

YIDDISH CURSES FOR REPUBLICAN JEWS:

May you be reunited in the world to come with your ancestors, who were all socialist garment workers.

May you grow so rich that your widow’s second husband is thrilled they repealed the estate tax.

May you feast every day on chopped liver with onions, chicken soup with dumplings, baked carp with horseradish, braised meat with vegetable stew, latkes, and may every bite of it be contaminated with E. Coli, because the feds gutted the EPA.

May you sell everything and retire to Florida just as global warming makes it uninhabitable.

May you have a rare disease and need an operation that only one surgeon in the world, the winner of the Nobel Prize for Medicine, is able to perform. And may he be unable to perform it because he doesn’t take your insurance. And may that Nobel Laureate be your son.

May you live to a ripe old age, and may the only people who come visit you be Mormon missionaries.

May your son be elected President, and may you have no idea what you did with his goddamn birth certificate.

May you live to a hundred and twenty without Social Security or Medicare.

May you grow like an onion with your head in the ground, and then may the ground be fracked and millions of gallons of oil be found and you own no mineral rights.

May your child give his Bar Mitzvah speech on the genius of Ayn Rand.

May your insurance company decide constipation is a pre-existing condition.

May God give you a daughter-in-law who is as kind as she is beautiful, as patient as she is rich, as wise as she is devoted, a virtuous woman in every way. And then may a ballot initiative invalidate her marriage to your only daughter, Rebecca.

May the secretary your husband is schtupping depend on Planned Parenthood for her birth control.

Thoughts On Thoughts

It’s cold in the hills. Oh, not like the rest of country which is ensconced in a big premium insulated Yeti cooler. This is Texas. Coat in the morning….short sleeve shirt by 1:30 pm…..an Inuit approved parka by sundown. There’s such a sameness within the changes. So many changes within th sameness.

By 2:30 this afternoon, I needed to replace my standard issue Hanes sweats and into something that would allow ventilation. Ther was light creeping through plantation shutters, the scourge of drapers everywhere, but such a classic style. It illuminated my thigh snd the ant farm I call my vericors veins. How oddly interconnected it all is. One turns right then to the left then carries on a straight course for an inch or so, only to reverse back and fade into spidery oblivion. Arbitrary.

“Hhhhmmmmm”, I think. “How different would my thigh look had I been thinner at this period in my life, had I not worm so much Spandex in the ’80’s…..the process of sitting cross-legged for hours at this new tangled contraption called a Persomal Computer.

I reach down and touch the scar, courtesy of a neurotic Shelti named Edmund who went a little crazy when awakes too rapidly. While traversing a dark hall way I. Which he liked to sleep, I placed my foot near his mouth, he placed a canine in the flesh above my knee.

There streak like Cuts on the shin from a broken glass as my body had the good sense to go feet first out of the front windshield during car crassh 30 yeqrs who. Scars from operations that make me look like I’m part zipper. There’a mole that lives above my ankle. It hasn’t grown, its never gotten smaller.

But I did…..the reasons why I changed don’t make good backstories.

I don’t want to compare a middle-aged woman’s arterial vexation to life, so I’ll stop trying. But the amazing thing about every mark, nick, stitch, mole, scare, eerie reddish birthmark that looks like Vishnu, they all have a backstory. Well, the birthmark might be pushing it a bit, but the other things all have histories.

The problem is I havent created any new old backstories lately. That bothers me. In my Life, I haven’t been as passionate purpose-wise as I have before. Goals have fallen short or never fully formed. There are no old comfy shoes in my closet, 17 fashion weeks behind the times, but still caked in mud and memories of an afternoon when love began. This past December, No ancient Christmas ornaments pop up in the just opened storage box and shouted, “Hey, remember me”? No well worn dinnerware which insisted I tell my guests sbout that time at the beach when these ugly ass plates made better Frisbees but dammit, there SHOULD be more stories. New stories of old experiences….old stories with newer twists.

It’s as though my life has a big gaping hole it in. There are miles between Point A and Point B. Now, make no mistake– My life hasn’t stopped, I just haven’t been living it well. So yeah, those old varicose ants have been working on their subdermal farm, as they have been, but I can’t explain anything about their workload; why they chose to burrow in the left direction as opposed to the right.

So, once again I sit here in the now cold, relative darkness of a Hill Country evening with just enough light shining through the window to let me know I need to find more meaningful backstories…..soon.

I also need to do a much better job at dusting those but lovely pain in the ass plantation shutters.

Huh?

I think my parents must think I’m a heretic. They’re divorced, but people of great religious faith. Both are Christians, able to quote the Bible at the drop of a yarmulke. I think I had doubts en utero.

I was raised Catholic by a Methodist mother. My parents married in 1952, pre-Vatican II, so my mater had to make an almost Faustian deal with the Church, that any and all children born from her Protestsnt womb, would be baptized Catholic and raised as such.

My father was hardly the zealot he is now and Mother never converted, but during our formative years, she kept her vow to Rome. We were baptized, made our first Communions and Comfirmed, but Pope Paul would’ve publicly pooped in his papal potty had he known that while I went to catechism every week, I also attended Vacation Bible School during the summer. The differences made me self conscious. I would instinctively cross myself after every prayer and at the time, my Catholic version of the Lord’s Prayer ended seconds earlier than everyone else. Back then, we didn’t include the “for thine is the kingdom and the power…..etcetera, etcetera. Beyond that, the Protestants had a far less complicated belief system. It was more about God (read: Jesus) and less in the process itself. By that I mean, as a Catholic, I was beholding to a three-in-one deity structure AND the Church. Often, dogma over scrupture.

As a kid, I was fascinated by magic. I would grow up to call it “special effects” and imagination. I used to love the TV shows, Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie. I liked the idea of affecting reality with a nose twitch or folding one’s arms and extending them outward while nodding one’s head.

Twitch, Tabitha gets an orange unicorn in her kitchen.

One head bob from the blond broad who the FCC and most of the adults I knew, thought dressed like a tart and BOOM! Dr. Bellows questions his sanity after finding himself in his underwear, standing in Red Square in mid-January. Silly, but to a kid who wants to be anywhere but in small town South Texas in the mid-1960’s, these shows were a haven; a brief respite from the monotony of sameness.

As a kid, I saw a lot of magic in all the Almighty tale. It was like a Catholic version of Darren Stevens’ life without the soundtrack, but with a lot more smiting. Then again, there was Endora.

So, I while I believed in a power greater than me, I had my doubts as a kid about Jeses’ role in the whole thing. I tried to understand God, then the son of ahhod and they threw in the Holy Ghost?? From a non-secular standpoint, going to college only elevated the diminished beliefs I had.

As the years progressed, I’d have dalliances with Catholicism–been there, done that. I even looked into Judaism but I didn’t have the cultural discipline. I read a lot of books and articles, I even talked to people who believed strongly and those who didn’t believe with as much conviction. But I always prayed, at least, in my own way. God was never an issue. Mono the sim in its strictest sense, made sense. I’d have conversations with God. There was no hard core reverence. I omitted the thees and thous and spoke very candidly. These conversations always ended up being conversations with myself. I’m not God, but isn’t God me? I mean, why not? It can’t be like that old axiom–talk to God and you’re praying, but if God answers, you’re mental. Would/ could religion Roth established sciences be that controlling? Would science even give God a flashing glance?

If you can pray at any time and any place and if God is omnipresent, then church is everywhere, right? Are there more psychological things at play with being a member of a congregation? As in, power in numbers combined with a sense of belonging? Huh? If that’s case, then individuality and non-conformity must frighten organized religion. Intellectualism, too or are these things really one in the same??

Again, I ask, huh?

Look, these questions can’t contribute anything new to those fully entrenched in Christianity, Semitism, Islam, Wiccans, to those with their agnostic leanings or the atheists in the world. I know what I know, doubt what I doubt and question everything in between. I’m not smarter, better educated…I’m not more sophisticated. If you don’t share the same quest as I do, that’s fine. I won’t burn you at the stake, confine you in an iron maiden, throw you into a death camp or hijack planes and fly them into tall buildings.

I’ll continue to question everything and apply the logic that seems the most logical to me. I’ll continue to believe in God on my terms and have my “conversations” with and I encourage you to do the same, in any form or fashion. And if you ask questions, dare to seek the answers. Stay at home if you must, but imagine boldly. Travel mentally. Read. Connect. Engage.
Be fearless in your pursute to believe what feels right to you.

And above all, don’t read Spinoza on a night when you’re really, really focused.