Wednesday, March 30, 2016

The Periodic Attention Whore Award

That old internet meme "Look at me - I'm an attention whore" can serve as a guide for this increasingly necessary award. Some people just can't resist doing something that would cause them to be noticed, no matter how trivial or superfluous it might be. Okay, just let me 'splain things by giving this current awardee:

The Tennessee General Assembly. Very recently the Tennessee Senate has revived a bill to make the Bible the Official Book of the State of Tennessee. Now just what is this all about? Is this to bait liberals, or to make a pious statement, or because all the legislators want to come together and sing "Kumbaya"?

My point is that this is unnecessary, same as if the General Assembly made "Goodnight Moon" the Official Book of the State of Tennessee.

There's an allied example: when one of the 50 states passes legislation that might be socially unpopular, some state or city official pronounces a ban on travel to that state for state employees. Yes, it looks sexy as hell: they come across as socially responsible and right-minded when what the other state did may be wrong but is none of their damned business! Specifically, when North Carolina recently passed legislation possibly bad for gays and transgender people, New York and other entities forbade travel to that state.

Seriously, why should Carolinians give a damn? And how often do New Yorkers officially travel to North Carolina? Holy empty gesture, Batman!

My point is, legislatures should keep to acting on necessary matters, and not make purely symbolic gestures.

And state or local officials should mind their own business and not act like moral compasses for others. That played very well in school years ago, but they come across as insufferable prigs now!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Time to Revive an Old Term

The quality of political discourse has declined even in the Post-Common Sense Era of the tens. The center cannot hold; mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, as Billy Yeats put it years ago. 

It's time to summon an old term into our national dialogue. We have demagogues enough. I think most Senators are demagogue wannabees, from what they say; and that's strong enough.

No, the term I have in mind is rabble rouser. I know that's politically incorrect as can be; but give me some room here, y'all!

At least one Presidential candidate seems to encourage mistreatment of protesters and his vilified the press. I know journalists are as popular as a bastard at a family reunion (particularly if he's from sainted granny's side)! But this poorly coiffured clown seems to relish retaliation against protesters.

And some protest idiots, bless their hearts, seem to be more inventive in their disruptive ways. 

There's a small percentage of the population (I hope) that might be accurately described as goons. And a few whose scales might be tipped towards goonishness. But this is not to be encouraged. These are the rabble I have in mind.

Nice politicians should not poke a stick in the doghouses of rabble. Don't shout "havoc" and let slip the dogs of war.

And don't be a rabble rouser. You don't have any means of putting on the brakes of rabble once they're set in motion. There are still rough beasts out there, prone to slouch to Washington.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Crazy Crap from South Carolina

School superintendents are not immune from dumbass decisions. This one takes the cake:

Here's the story:

"Union County High School teacher Leigh Anne Arthur says she left her phone on her desk for a few minutes while she went out on a routine patrol of the school's hallways. A 16-year-old student opened her phone, which wasn't protected with a password, and found pictures of Arthur that included shots of her partially undressed. The student used his own phone to take pictures of the partial nudes and send them around."

So the poor lady was humiliated by this awful intrusion on her privacy and modesty. (The partially nude pictures were for her husband.) 

Surely the little twerp was expelled, or at least suspended. Nope.

Instead the School Superintendent asked for her resignation, and she was forced out.

What is wrong with this picture? A lot. She was the VICTIM, not the perp. What was the Superintendent thinking? Does he have shit for brains?

It's sort of like the lame argument that the Marriott attorney made in the Erin Andrews suit in Nashville: the nude pictures that a voyeur took of her from a peephole helped her career?

That guy needs a serious butt whipping!