Good hair and the inexact science of compromise

BACK IN TEXAS — Coy seems to be the watchword these days among the growing crowd of would-be candidates for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination.

Pundits and GOP talking points distributors have thrown themselves all into a big ol’ tizzy this week over the on-again off-again presidential ambitions of Sarah Palin, a.k.a. Caribou Barbie, suddenly switched into the on-again position. A piece of interesting journalism from The Christian Science Monitor poses the intriguing question: Will Palin face her “mini-me” in Michelle Bachmann should the almost one-term Alaska governor decide to run? Meanwhile, our good-haired boy Gov. Rick Perry — between denouncing the federal government and asking for its help — is thinking of throwing, at least his coquettishness, into the presidential ring again.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry gets ready to lead the secession

These GOP politicians who otherwise take up valuable air on this planet are, of course, joined by declared candidates his Mormonesque Mitt Romney, his Newtwitishness Newt Gingrich, his Weirdness Ron Paul and other well and less well known Republicans such as pro-Pot former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson and pro-anything that works at the time former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

Coy. The rest are being coy. Coy can be cute. But it’s not so much in this case.

Soon you will need a program for the players. And, I am not talking about a television program hosted by his Donaldness Donald “The Donald” Trump.

Such a wide-open field makes for a more-interesting race sometimes. In this case, the race might evolve into a contest in which  of the biggest harebrain crackpots might be nominated rather than the traditional GOP “good party man.” If this next presidential challenge doesn’t finish off the Republican Party as we know it, then I don’t know what will.

But what if the dog actually catches the car? What will Fido do with it?

My prediction is that a Republican president taking office in 2013 will not be the cure-all for all those, supposedly, long-suffering GOP and/or Tea Party boosters. An example is the furor over the state of Texas failing to receive a major disaster declaration from Spring wildfires.

FEMA rejected a request earlier this month by Gov. Good Hair for a declaration that would help reduce the state and local fiscal burden for those wildfires that have scorched more than 2.2 million acres across Texas. Perry said at the time of the rejected request: “It is not only the obligation of the federal government, but its responsibility under law to help its citizens in times of emergency.”

This is the same governor who shocked millions of Americans by saying Texas could secede if it wanted to do so.

“We are very proud of our Texas history; people discuss and debate the issues of can we break ourselves into five states, can we secede, a lot of interesting things that I’m sure Oklahoma and Pennsylvania would love to be able to say about their states, but the fact is, they can’t because they’re not Texas,” Perry said.

The governor must have been tossing back cold Lone Stars at the Dixie Chicken when Texas History was being taught during his college days at A & M.

An 1845 joint congressional resolution annexing Texas allows, theoretically at least, the state to divide itself up into five states. That doesn’t mean Texas would leave the United States. The Civil War took care of that notion. That was after Texans turned their back on one of its most revered figures, then-Gov. Sam Houston. The leader whose troops defeated Mexico at San Jacinto and who was later president of the Republic of Texas and a U.S. senator for Texas — before Texas he also served as governor of and a U.S. representative from Tennessee — was removed as governor because of his strong opposition to secession.

Knowledge of Texas history  aside, Perry has appealed the ruling for no disaster declaration and the Obama administration’s contention that almost $40 million in grants to help battle Texas wildfires was sufficient.

In addition to the millions already granted to Texas, federal help has come in the form of wildland firefighters from 35 states. Many of those who have helped battle fires across the state are from so-called “hotshot” crews which come from three federal agencies, Native American tribes as well as from the states of Alaska and Utah. The U.S. military has likewise lent assistance in the form of helicopters and air tankers.

Having the federal government take an additional burden of the funding for fighting these fires would be welcome and might have been readily deliverable to the state. Unfortunately, Perry and his faux secession act as well as a number of Texas congressional members made that declaration a non-starter.

An increasing number of Republicans were elected to the U.S. House from Texas over the past decade. Yet, few of them have found access to power and have spent more time obstructing and less time working with the administration. Congress members from the state with more tenure and more oomph might have grabbed the president’s ear or found ways to, as that great scholar Larry the Cable Guy says: “Git R Done.”

Sometimes it takes a little more than just sending someone to Congress who is of your party preference. Also, the notion of a House member serving only one or two terms is ridiculous. It takes that long just to find your way from the Capitol to the congressional office buildings.

It seems cruel to say that voters who think the federal government should fork over millions every time their governor says: “Go,” only have themselves to blame. But that is about the gist of it. People who want ideologues in office and get them are often disappointed. Life isn’t easy to stand for your principles unbending. I have seen the word politics defined as “the art of compromise.” Perhaps it is more an inexact science. Although, “compromise” remains an essential particle.

When it comes to picking the next nominee to run against President Obama, perhaps something more substantial than nice hair and a pretty smile might be entertained by Republican voters.

Sharks everywhere

More and more nowadays the Tea Party seems as if its prime target is the Republican Party. Sooner or later the GOP faces possible vaporization of the Whig Party type if the TP frustration with the Republicans finally reaches a China Syndrome phase.

William Temple, chairman, Tea Party Founding Fathers, is exasperated that Newt Gingrich would dare finding fault with the plan by House Speaker John Boehner and his budget guru Rep. Paul Ryan to put Medicare into the hands of private insurance companies. Gingrich called the plan “right-wing social engineering” and “radical change.” Temple rebuts:

“Mr. Gingrich, who seems not to mind “radical change” in his domestic life, is simply wrong about the Boehner-Ryan Medicare plan,”  Temple says in a press release.

Boom goes the dynamite.

Temple goes on to criticize Gingrich while damning Ryan and Boehner with faint praise:

“It is not “radical.  It is tame as a pussy cat,” says Temple. ” The Boehner-Ryan Medicare plan is to fix Medicare and Medicaid sometime way off in the future, in the sweet bye and bye.  While Obama, Gingrich, Romney, Pelosi and Reid favor the essential tyranny behind ObamaCare – forced purchasing of a product – Boehner and Ryan have, up to now, been content to fiddle while Rome burns with regard to Medicare.”

Great stuff. With friends like Temple, the Republicans sure don’t need enemies although they’ve got them up the yang.

So, let the political allies tear themselves to shreds. I’m going fishing. Well, maybe not. Here is why.

Scott Jennings, a Texas Parks and Wildlife Department game warden, responded to a call back in March that a commercial fishing boat had pulled into Freeport with an 8-foot, short-fin mako shark. A Game Warden field report states that the crew told the Jennings that the shark had jumped into the boat’s stern as they were weighing anchor.

Yeah, right.

Incredibly, the shark flipped over the crewmen’s heads and landed forward beside the center console of the boat. The crew told the game warden that at one point, they had seriously considered abandoning the boat to the shark.

The report goes on to say that the shark couldn’t be removed from the boat without it being harmed so the game warden called up National Marine Fisheries Service agent Charles Tyer, who arranged the purchase of a “federal highly migratory species permit so that they could legally land the shark.”

Now that’s one hell of a fish story and a lot more fun to relate than the continuing soap-opera-like squabbles between the Republicans and the Tea Partiers.

So until next time, Show me the way to go home/I’m tired and I want to go to bed …


Watch the soap: “As The Government Turns”

The machinery of the federal government is gearing down toward a halt. I know this from personal experience, but I will not go into it just because. No, I could relate some of that familiarity but I see no reason to, it being fairly pedestrian. Besides, we still have more than eight hours to go even though I don’t believe in miracles — at least when the federal government is concerned. By federal government, I include Congress.

Give us your tired, your poor and your idiots, the latter of whom will make our laws.

Military men and women aren’t happy campers, reports Navy Times, for the same reason I am not doing cartwheels. The threat of no pay sometime down the road is on our minds. The American Federation of Government Employees, a mighty fine labor organization I might say, a.k.a. AFGE, is seeking an injunction which would prohibit military and other federal workers who are deemed essential from having to work without pay. The AFGE says they have the Constitution to back them up.

“Hundreds of thousands of federal employees will be required to work during a shutdown, and there’s no guarantee that Congress will keep the administration’s promise to pay those employees once the shutdown is over,” AFGE National President John Gage said.

The suit charges that the Obama administration is violating the Appropriations Clause and Thirteenth Amendment by requiring federal civilian employees to work without pay during a period of lapsed federal appropriations.


Really, there isn’t anything to do but sit back and watch all the foolishness and silliness in this gargantuan soap opera played out by the people who govern the “greatest nation on Earth.”

For a little insanity not directly related to the government shutdown: BP has bought an eastern-facing beach of Cat Island, a barrier island in the Mississippi Sound. The part of the beach is the top of the “T” of the T-shaped island that is about eight miles south of Gulfport, Miss. Parts of the island were long in private hands. So, says a BP press flak,  it would be easier for the company to clean up the beach, due to the massive Deepwater Horizon explosion-caused oil spill which happened one year ago this month, than to have to deal with the regulatory niceties of cleaning up private property. You break it, you buy it, I guess. Candy, I bet. S**t, I reckon.

On that note, I know I am off from my part-time job until at least Tuesday. We shall see if it is longer than that, and if I will be back to begging for donations on the blog if the threatened shutdown materializes.



Our Congress tis of thee, sweet threat to liberty …

No great profundities have I, at the ready, all waiting to flow like a mountain spring from noggin to fingers onto keys and into the great Internetosphere.

But this I shall say, and permit me please. For if I do not seek permission it will mean not one whit, but polite is all that I attempt.  Say I that the Congress of the United States of America at the moment seem to have lost their collective minds — even more so than usual. If anything gets passed before Christmas with any meaning to the people, for the people and of the people, I shall not eat my hat, not will I be a monkey’s uncle. Likewise will I not be a uncle’s monkey with an eaten hat. However, damned well surprised is what I shall be.

This Congress in all its present glory is what we shall live with for the next two years.  DADT? Don’t Ask! Health care? Who the hell cares! And on it goes.

We are peering into the future.  Only, it will be worse with the new incoming lot of ignorami. Oh, I can see it now. The death penalty for gays and abortionists. A Constitutional Amendment making God the 51st state of the Union. The Great Wall of the United States. Interment camps for illegal aliens with brown skin.

That is malarky, of course, surely some sensible folks will be around to keep the wide-eyed radicals from blowing up the country. I hope, and don’t call me Shirley.

But who knows what the Tea Party will dream up until they start seeing those big, big dollars slipped into their pockets by nice Mr. Lobbyist. Then shall we have both the sanctimonious and the corrupt all rolled into one little, fat, pasty ball. Whoopee!

Just remember, you voted for them. Not you Mr. Liberal or you Mr. True Yellow Dog Democrat. But you know who you are. When the going gets dreadful, the dreadful get going.

Have a nice time until 2012.

Does no mean no for Rick Perry as a 2012 GOP prez candidate?

When it comes to presidential politics, “no” often means “yes,” and even more succinctly, “book” means “yes.”

Fresh from an unprecedented re-election to a fourth term as Texas governor comes Rick Perry, slayer of coyotes, threatening to wrest Texas from the jaws of the rest of the union and now author of a new book called “Fed Up.” If you expected me to link to his new book, sorry, you don’t know me at all.

Quick, a little word association — or in Perry’s case, disassociation:

  • Political figure writing books — running for president.
  • Political figure on TV book tour saying he is not running for president — running  for president.
  • Political figure on TV book tour saying he is not running for president on Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show” — running for president.

There you have it folks. Gov. Good Hair doth protest a bit too much when declaring  he will not run for president as darling or Mr. Congeniality of the Tea Party. Would Sarah Palin settle for Veep again? Only if she didn’t get the nomination herself. The Tea Party seems way too traditional to even let a woman run for political office when she would best serve someone at home barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. But I guess they make exceptions for things such as that, or for bad qualities such as lying. (Saying you are not running for president when you

Dumb and Dumber: Which is which?

have every intention to do so. A white lie for a good ol’ white boy.)

Like his predecessor, Gee Dubya By God Bush, Good Hair is a master at multi-tasking so hedging his bets by staying employed by the State of Texas as its governor no es un problema. Perry can keep his cushy little job as governor of Ol No. 2. I say that meaning Texas is number 2 in population and area. As well as Gross State Product (GSP.) I suppose Perry would qualify for that too.

There is nothing better I like than spending tax money on a politician running for office, but only if I like him, her or it. The GSP, well, not so much.

Now that Bush and Perry have dueling books, the world gets treated to lame TV interviews of the two people whom I least would want to have seen as a representative of this the greatest, even at No. 2 because like Avis we try harder, state in the Onion. Perry’s book said Bush spent too much as president. I haven’t read either one but I suppose Bush will say something about Perry like “his feet stunk.” Boys will be boys!

I really can’t see Perry being elected as president because I don’t think that — even though they did elect George W. Bush — there are quite enough brain dead American voters to pull it off. Of course, it always helps to have a Supreme Court in your pocket.