Friday, July 30, 2010

The Uselessness of Republican Lawmakers

"No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of it to anyone else."
Charles Dickens

Last night the House of Representatives voted on, and rejected, a bill that would have provided up to 7.4 billion dollars in health care aid to 9/11 survivors and first responders. The tally was 255 to 159 in favor and, as usual, the voting fell primarily along party lines. Only 12 Republicans voted for it. Let’s look at those numbers again so that they can properly sink in. 255 votes in favor of providing much needed help to the heroes of the most catastrophic attack in our nation’s history, and only 12 of those positive votes were cast by Republicans. Do the terms heartless, cruel, callous, merciless, cold-blooded, vicious spring to your mind as they do to mine? What about asinine, contemptuous, spineless, foolish, selfish … I guess I could go on forever. And let’s not forget that this is the party that uses 9/11 for campaigning purposes, fund raising activities, attacks on the Democrats and, worst of all, as justification for the invasion and occupation of Iraq. There is simply no defense for this. No reasonable, rational, sound-minded person could ever possibly vote against helping these amazingly brave people who now suffer as a result of their selfless actions - and yet 155 Republicans did. To quote John Feal, one of those very heroes, "Whoever votes 'No' tomorrow should go to jail for manslaughter." He won’t get an argument from me. Yet as hard as this may be to comprehend, we actually should not be surprised. This is the way of the modern day Republican Party. This is the party whose members refer to unemployed people during the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression as, “lazy,” “spoiled,” and “hobos.” This is the party that has repeatedly blocked efforts to increase the level of compensation paid out by BP to the Gulf Coast residents suffering from the oil spill. This is the party who tried to block Obama’s middle class tax cut. A tax cut that has provided the lowest tax rates in over 60 years for 95% of working class Americans. Simultaneously, the Republicans have been fighting to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans which added 1.7 trillion dollars to the deficit. This is the party that has successfully blocked tax breaks for small businesses. Tax breaks which would stimulate the economy and help create jobs. At the same time they've been repeatedly voting against the extension of unemployment benefits. In other words, this is the party who doesn’t give a tinker’s cuss (thank you John Cleese) about the poor, the suffering, the down-trodden or even just your regular old working-class folk trying their best to get by during hard times. Joe the Plumber they really, truthfully, honestly don’t care about you - please believe me. If the first responders were made up of corporate CEOs, oil executives and billionaires that bill would have passed with flying colors. To return to Dickens’ quote, “No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of it to anyone else,” right now, who is more useless than the Republican party? If you’re not independently wealthy and you vote Republican in November, you’re voting against your own self interests.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Street of Dreams

Ah, 8th avenue, in the 40’s, at 12:15am on a weeknight! Such charm. Such beauty. Such je ne sais quoi (that‘s right I‘ve been to Paris.) And on a balmy, summer’s evening such as this - such a fine variety of aromas. Has there ever been a more enchanting locale? Come. Join me. Take in this unique, and sidewalk-clogging blend of the slimy, sleazy, scary, skeezy (if it’s not a word, it should be) denizens; who cross paths with the somewhat wide-eyed, somewhat anxious and definitely, somewhat alarmed, Phantom/Wicked attending tourists; while also sharing that very same real estate with the bridge and tunnel-ers, rapidly hoofing their way to and from the Port of Authority. Add some, post-witching hour, alcohol into the mix, and Ringling’s animal abusing, traveling show is no circus compared to this. Now I unabashedly, unashamedly love New York. I always have and I always will. It is a place of which I never tire. It’s inimitable, irreplaceable ... I love New York the way mid-life crisis, Republican men love Sarah Palin. Well, actually my love of New York is much more wholesome than that, but you get the point. And I should find a certain like-able, colorful, character to 8th avenue, but when you have to trek it almost daily, any kind of charm quickly wanes. I suppose I should be more tolerant and less judgmental, but I pay a lot to live here, so I’m not going to be. So, please, step aside, five astride vacationers. Keep it moving, nine to five suburban dwellers. And pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again, 8th avenue irregulars. I just need to get to where I’m going with minimal muss and fuss.

Friday, July 23, 2010

In the beginning

So, I've started this blog because I get aggravated everyday by the nonsense being pulled on the political right and no longer want to bore and/or irritate people on facebook. It's supposed to be a social network after all, and I don't want to burden people with my unwanted liberal rantings. If you get the reference in the name of the blog, you'll know I hope to keep this at least as lighthearted and humorous as I do serious and political. I'm sure no one really cares what I have to say, but I need an outlet in order to not punch holes in walls. So there you have it. If anyone should actually come across this, I hope you get something worthwhile out of the few minutes it takes of your time. Welcome to, "... and several butcher's aprons."