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Go Together Like a Horse and Carriage

The proto-fascist-communist-socialist, Bernie Sanders had a huge article in the Views section of our local, liberal rag The Centre Daily Times today.  Bernie is the Senator from Vermont—a Northeastern state very near Canada.  The title of the article was “Deficit reduction requires shared sacrifice,” but what it really espoused was soaking the rich and corporate to “reduce” the burden on the poor and middle class—-who, according to Bernie—are facing the loss of Medicare, education, unions, livelihood and oxygen.  “Red” Sanders suggested three ways in which the rich and corporate might pitch in:

  1. By getting rid of the Bush tax cuts for the very wealthy
  2. By closing corporate loopholes, and
  3. By reducing the budget of the Pentagon—now fighting three unbudgeted wars.

Smokey and I shuddered to read the ideas spelled out by Sanders, but I must report that the more we thought about it, the more they began to make good sense.  What is wrong with taxing the rich and corporate and ending even two wars (it appears that you have to have at least one unfunded war—boys will be boys)?

To find out what we were missing, Smokey Diamond visited Millard Needsmore—spokesperson for Eye of A Needle, Inc.

Cousin Myron's Cray

My cousin Myron, the fiery headed math-whiz and overall hot-tempered eccentric went to ground about 6 months ago.  We’d speak on the phone once or twice a week about this and that.  He was keeping his fingers crossed that Sarah Palin might run, and he would relate in some detail how much fun he would have if the ditz did.  When I asked him what he was doing, he would only say he was working on a kit.

We finally got together at a Deli on Queens Blvd.

Ryan and Gingrich Sitting in a Tree.

At Stevieslaw, we realize that we are the only blog in the nation that has not done a piece about Newt Gingrich over the past week or so.  This is either a reflection of our deep respect for the Newter or our incredible laziness (please choose one).  Now, Smokey Diamond has run down the rest of the story.

We have learned that not only has Newt apologized to Paul Ryan for calling his Medicare plan “right-wing social engineering” and explained that he would have voted for it had he been in Congress, but the Newt will also tout (or toot for you poets) the plan around the nation as he campaigns for the Presidency.  His conversion, as Gingy explained to Smokey, was a result of his deeper understanding of the Ryan plan.  “This plan will only adversely affect seniors and people who ever expect to become seniors,” Newts told Smokey—“not everyone.” “Most of all, it will have a positive influence on the country’s millionaires and multi-millionaires who will not be asked to help pay for your healthcare.”  “Remember,” he said, “Millionaires must be protected if we are ever to offer a single new job in this country again.”

Newty continued, “I have promised Paul that I am through with the kind of knee-jerk reactions, based on common sense, which got me in trouble in the first place.”  “I am a

"Fear of the Month Club" Smart Phone App.

 

Smokey Diamond, our intrepid reporter, was on Sixth Avenue in Manhattan this morning checking out the new headquarters of Fear Central.  It’s right next door to Fox News.  Fear Central is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Republican National Committee although many of the Fox people have joint appointments.  “It’s not a pleasant place to be,” said Smokey, “Every few minutes someone gives out a blood curdling scream.”  “They have several cubbies filled with fearful looking people drenched in sweat, who apparently do nothing all day but moan “Oh My God, Oh My God, it’s the end of the America I know and love.”

Smokey was able to meet with Stephen Poe King, chief spokesperson for Fear.  Steve is well known for his groundbreaking work on the fear driven, anti-flag burning amendment to the constitution that failed by one vote in the Senate in 2006.  Rumor has it that he was also responsible for the phrase: “If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.” 

“Smokey,” he said, “I have two words for you—voter fraud.”  “That is the reason, in conjunction with Republican patriots everywhere we are demanding that voters present official and up to date photo ids.”  “Birth certificates to

Rick Santorum and the Death of Bin Laden

We, in Pennsylvania, haven’t heard much from super-candidate Rick Santorum lately. And here at Stevieslaw, we’ve yet to meet anyone who claims to miss him.  Every six months or so, the national media reports on a statement or two from the Taliban that commends Santorum on his women’s rights policies, but other than that we’ve had nothing.

Now the Daily Beast reports Santorum told conservative radio host, Hugh Hewitt, that Santorum’s former colleague John McCain does not understand enhanced interrogation. This is a bit strange as McCain is a decorated war hero and prisoner of war who survived “enhanced interrogation” from the N.

The Vatican Rag

Nicole Winfield, writing for the Associated Press, reported that The Vatican told Bishops—just yesterday—“that it is important to cooperate with the police in reporting priests who rape and molest children.”  That startling news was followed by a pronouncement that gave the Bishops only until next May to develop guidelines for preventing sex abuse.  Only one year!  Along those lines, Smokey Diamond suggests you might want to keep your children out of church until next May.  The Bishops will still be the final authority on the credibility of abuse charges, said the Vatican, “Because this has worked so well in the past.”  Amazingly, victim’s groups were outraged.

The Vatican has been under increasing pressure to halt child abuse by priests, particularly since the publication this week by the magazine “The Two-Thousand Year Old Bad Idea,” of a study suggesting that an unsupervised camping trip by half a dozen eighth graders in the most desolate part of Central Park was 45% less likely to produce a life-long trauma that a similar camping trip supervised by a priest.  H.Y. See called the intrepid Smokey Diamond into his office to dispute this finding.  The H.

There but for Fortune

This is our one hundredth post since November 2010.  There are so many people to thank.   The oil executives, who feel that without some billions in government aid they can no longer go on drilling: The pharmaceutical companies, who have made record profits this year, because people have delayed medical treatment in the poor economy: The major corporations, that pay no tax on their profits.  Many thanks to the polluters, the arms manufacturers, the war mongers and all the little people—Tom Corbett, Scott Walker, Rick Scott and others, who have turned the cutting of social services for the neediest into an entertainment.  To Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and others who think that saying something twice makes it true.  And, to all who feel that taxation, of even the very rich, is the great Satan and that promoting the common good is missing a “for me.” 

Phil Ochs wrote “There but for Fortune” in 1963.  For me, it has always been better than a month of Sundays.  For all the talk of inspiration and perspiration as the road to “success,” there is much to be said for a long and strong run of good luck.

There But For Fortune.

Show me a prison, show me a jail,

Show me a prisoner whose face has gone pale

And I’ll show you a young man with so many reasons why<

Cousin Myron Sees Red

www.stevieslaw.wordpress.com

Cousin Myron was beet red and angry.  That was not unusual, Myron is often angry and he is naturally beet red.  I tried to get a reading on just what was bothering Myron this time, without getting on the wrong side of the cousin.  Myron has one of the best left jab-right cross combinations to ever come out of Brownsville, Brooklyn and that’s saying a lot—Mike Tyson is from our old neighborhood.

“School vouchers,” Myron spat. 

“School vouchers?” I repeated.

“Are you going to repeat everything I say,” threatened Myron

“I didn’t,” I said trying to explain, “My response was a question.”

I ducked a vicious right hand and backed up a bit. 

“It just surprised me that a high-school dropout would have such a strong opinion on school vouchers.” I said—perhaps unwisely.

“Just because I dropped out of Thomas Jefferson HS doesn’t mean I didn’t get a lot from my public school education,” fumed Myron.  “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,” he said—slipping in a little Dickens to make his point.” “For one thing, I got to mix with all kinds of people”  “When I meet someone now for the first time, I’m not uncomfortable—I know at least a little bit about where they might be coming from.” “This Country is supposed to be a mixing pot,” he said heatedly.

“That’s the problem with these vouchers,” he continued.  “They want to segregate their children in religious/private schools and teach them values instead of history and gospel instead of science.”  “Fundamentally,” he said—with no irony— “they don’t want their kids to go to school with my kids.” 

“Because, you’re Jewish?” I asked Myron.

“No, you idiot,” he screamed, throwing a wicked left, “because I’m redheaded.”

When is a Rainy Day Not

Stevieslaw: When is a Rainy Day Not

Our local Newspaper, The Centre Daily Times, published a partial headline today.  They often do.  Smokey Diamond, our intrepid reporter, picked it up right away.  The headline was: GOP plan restores school funds.  The missing part was: On the Backs of the Poor

The headline was misleading in any event.  Only part of the public school funding will be restored and only those parts of public welfare are that wasteful or fraudulent will be cut.  You might well ask why we have been funding wasteful and fraudulent public welfare up to now.  Well, you might ask.  The cynical among you will imagine that the change of plans for the GOP was based on the realization that supporters of public education were more likely to vote and to contribute to reelection campaigns than were the neediest.

Smokey ran down Jim Smiley, spokesman for the PA Republican Caucus, and asked him what was responsible for the change in strategy.  Jim said, “Simple, we came to the realization that supporters of public education were more likely to vote and to contribute to reelection campaigns than were the neediest.”

Smokey also wanted to hear about the GOP reluctance to use a windfall, half billion dollar budget surplus to hel

Tom Corbett to Seek "Historic Site" Legislation

The news that fracking firms could drill at will at archeological sites of importance created a furor today in the offices of Tom Corbett, Governor of Pennsylvania and man of the people. Our own intrepid reporter, Smokey Diamond, was dispatched to Harrisburg for the story.  Smokey met with Ben Loudly, voice of the Governor, who confirmed that “Tom is very concerned.” “What we fear, of course,” he said with emotion, “is that ghosts of Native Americans roused by the drilling process will begin to haunt energy executives and high placed government officials.”  “Today, we will introduce serious anti-haunting legislation to prohibit any sort of nightmarish reprisals from long dead, Native Americans.”  “We must always keep in our minds that overtired fracking firm executives might make mistakes that reduce both profits and contributions to the governor’s reelection campaign.”  Loudly concluded by stating, “We expect this legislation to pass quickly through both Republican controlled legislative chambers.” “Enforcement rules will certainly be in place well before this Halloween.”

Anyone remember the old Joni Mitchell song, Big Yellow Taxi.

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