Saturday, March 22, 2008

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

Unlike a small group of devout Catholics in the Philippines, The Lifeguard will not be scourging himself; nor, will he allow himself to be nailed to a cross.

As a war rages, we are safe and secure in our homes. We have the comfort of our loved ones, while so many others--serving under arms--do not. We sleep in warm, comfortable beds, while our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines sleep in far less hospitable conditions.

And, through it all, I--we--have the knowledge that our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, died for our sins. That He paid the ultimate price for all of us.

Pax vobiscum.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

I Hate Everybody...


In the event that there was any question about it, I hate everyone. Every single living, breathing soul who has decided that their mission in life is to piss me off.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Animal House II

Life With Howie

Now I know why former Vermont Governor, Howard Dean, MD, let out a scream at an Iowa campaign rally back in 2004. He had an epiphany. That sort of awakening that has supremely religious implications. He realised that the leadership of the Democrat Party was a group of like-minded tools who, while racially diverse, were just plain stupid.

That scream ended the media's love affair with Governor Dean; but, he did take over as Chairman of the Democrat National Committee.

And now, he is faced with a huge dilemma.

Florida and Michigan, two states with a combined population of twenty-seven million, moved the date of their primaries, in hopes that they would ensure their relevance in what was already being projected to be a runaway win for the inevitable Hillary!. After all, Florida and Michigan are a microcosm of America--black and white (and brown), rich and poor, young and old--and as such, their voting patterns would seem to have some relevance to how the general election might go down come November.

The DNC told the state parties that, if they moved their primaries, their delegates would not be seated. All of the Democrat candidates pledged to avoid Florida and Michigan; and, all of them for Hillary!. And, Hillary! won, going away. Seating the delegates narrows the gap between Senators Obama and Hillary!; and, gives her serious street cred when it comes to her making her case to the Super Delegates.

Now, the race continues, with neither Senator Obama nor Senator Clinton willing to give any quarter. Senator Obama has won more states. Senator Clinton has won the big states.

Senator Obama says, "have a do-over." He is certain that his momentum will cause him to win in the two primaries.

Hillary! is opposed, fearing that the voters will vote for Obama, and not her. She wants all of the Michigan and Florida delegates seated. And, when faced with the question of why she didn't play by the DNC rules regarding campaigning in the two states, she responds, as Otter did:

"You fucked up--you trusted us."

Thursday, March 13, 2008

The Pot Can't Call The Kettle Black

Geraldine Ferraro Speaks The Truth

Hillary! shit-hammered adviser (and former Democrat Vice President candidate), Geraldine Ferraro, for having the balls to state the obvious.

Senator Obama is where he is, as I noted in an earlier post, because he has no record to speak of; and, because he is black.
There, I said it. Barack Obama is black. These attributes--a lack of a paper trail and his blackness--go hand-in-hand; and, one without the other would knock him from the Olympic heights. (e.g., The Reverends Jackson and Sharpton are not viable because they each have a record.)

And, when anyone dares to suggest that Senator Obama is unqualified to be President, the lynch mobs gather, and there are screams of racism, narrow-mindedness, bigotry, and ignorance.

But, frankly, I would like to know how, in the name of all that is holy, is it wrong to question Senator Obama's (lack of) experience when it was more than all right to question the intellect and experience of (then Governor, now President) George W. Bush. (Even today, he is known to some as "the dumbest President.")

Hell, President Bush had learned to fly an interceptor, gotten an M.B.A., run a business, run a baseball team, and governed a Republic (yes, Virginia, Texas is a republic). Senator Obama has, well, defended Tony Rezko, distanced himself from Louis Farrakhan, and been a legislator.

People were elated when he selected Dick Cheney to be his running mate, because he would bring gravitas to the ticket. Who is Senator Obama going to select to bring gravitas to his ticket?

Oh, wait. He doesn't need any gravitas, because he is the second coming of President John F. Kennedy, Senator Robert F. Kennedy, and the Reverend Martin Luther King, all rolled into one.

I am not saying that I am happy about everything that President Bush has done; and, maybe there is something to be said for having little (or no experience) when coming to the job; but, face it, even President Jimmy Carter (our worst President) had been a Chief Executive.

If the media is doing their job, then we will hear about Senator Obama's warts, Hillary!'s wounds, and Senator McCain's skin cancers.

And, if they won't, The Lifeguard will.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Lawdy no, Missus Clinton...

Only In America...

could a person--in this case, Hillary!--have the hubris to ask the front-runner in the quest for the Democrat nomination to be her Vice President. To be on her dream ticket.

Granted, Hillary! is probably better qualified to be the Commander In Chief, even if it is by virtue of the fact that she once had sex with a President. Of course, by that calculus, Monica Lewinsky is a close second in the ranks of qualified Democrats.

And why, in the name of all that is holy, is it wrong a spade a spade.

There are only two reasons that Senator B. Hussein Obama is even in the race.

One, has to do with the fact that he is a cipher. No legislative history. No notable success as a lawyer. No jobs other than those where John Q. Public's tax dollars pay his salary.

Granted, he is a cipher with a smooth manner, rock star bearing, and savvy political advisers; but, he is less qualified to be POTUS than just about any actor who has played one on the big screen.

This is an advantage because he can speak in platitudes.

"Together we can."

"We worship an awesome God in the Blue States."

He can co-opt the speeches of other people--like Governor DeVal Patrick (D-Just Like Barack)--and no one will care. Because he has no substance, he can blend in with his surroundings, and no one will know. No one will care. No one has anything on him.

For a society with so much information at our fingertips, we are so foolish to think that a trip to grandma's grass hut, in Kenya, counts as foreign policy experience. Or, to think that a trip to a conference in Geneva equates to diplomacy. Or, that five years in a stinking shit-hole of a prison, in a Third World country* equals competency in dealing with foreign governments.

The second reason that Senator Obama is in the race is, well, his race.

Sadly, no one can say it without being called a racist. Except, for Hillary! She gets away with comments that would undo your average white guy. She as much as told Senator Obama that if he knew his place, he would agree to be her running mate.

Now, I realise that Hillary! is married to the first black President of the United States, so perhaps she can make those comments. (e.g., Chris Rock can use the N-Word, Michael Richards can not.)

The bottom line, my friends, is that America has become a nation where the three least qualified candidates have become inevitable.

Because they make us feel good.

God help us.

*No, I am not talking about Arkansas.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Oops, I Did It Again...

Maverick Senator John S. McCain Pisses Off The MIC*

In an effort to show what a swell guy he was, and to show that he was not a tool of the Republican Party, Senator McCain helped scuttle a tanker lease deal that would have given Boeing a sweet $35 billion contract, whose impact would have been felt in forty or so states.

McCain, who helped "save the taxpayers" some $6 billion dollars by blowing up the original deal, is now being criticised for potentially costing the nation tens of thousands of jobs across the United States. The good news, however, is that he insured that EADS-Northrop will likely get the contract to build the next-generation USAF tanker. And, to his defence, that contract will support about 25,000 related jobs; but, it still amounts farming out construction of the new tanker to...France.

For McCain, this is a tremendous cudgel for the Democrat Party to use against him. And, the fact that he might have saved $6 billion in 2004 is like a teacup in Lake Michigan when it comes to job losses today.

As McCain-Feingold caused bigger problems than it was meant to solve, so did bringing down Boeing. It is like getting turpentine with a spoonful of sugar--the cure is worse than the disease.

*Military Industrial Complex

Thursday, March 06, 2008

It's true...I am stupid.

The Lifeguard Walked Into The Courthouse...

and reported to the Jury Pool.

Court Officer: "Welcome. Your Juror Number is One."

Lifeguard: "You damn Skippy. I am the "one." I am...The Lifeguard, and I am now on duty."

There were ten trials on the docket; and, based upon personal experience, I was sure that at least one of them would go forward. I also knew, when I was handed the Juror Card with the number one on it, that I would be a venireman. I was pretty sure that the DA--any DA--would want me on that panel. She would need me on that panel.

And, I was equally confident that the defence attorney would want to burn a peremptory challenge to get rid of me.

But, she didn't. I was seated, and whiled away my day listening to an exciting trial in District Court.

The case, involving allegations of sex for money, was a source of intellectual stimulation (and a few laughs). I nearly spit when I learned that one of the customers...who had an apparent case of erectile dysfunction...was named, "Johnson."

The fact that the Defendant was a 59 year old grandmother added something to the ambiance.

I note, however, one disturbing development: The "johns" were released on their own recognizance, while the women providing were arrested. It is not really all that fair, when you think about it.

But, as the saying goes, in the halls of justice, the only justice is in the halls.

Oh, and the Defendant, after almost an hour of deliberation, was found guilty.

Primary Thoughts

Support Hillary!?

I was asked why I would consider the support of Hillary!, if she is the Democrat nominee, over the Republican, Senator John Sidney McCain, III.

The question was posed by someone who suggested that, since (typically) Democrat giveaways (read Great Society-style entitlements) become so ingrained in the fabric of daily life they simply can not be eradicated.

We have spent trillions of dollars on eliminating poverty, with little or no impact on the broader problem.

The United States spends billions on a failing education system; and, food stamps are abused (as they are promoted in advertisements on the radio). Social Security is a morass; and, Medicare/Medicaid are eating up an ever-larger percentage of America's GDP.

President Reagan tried to unwind many of these programmes; and, in eight years, he was powerless to bring sanity to Washington, DC. Indeed, where else but Washington could a five (5%) percent increase in spending be called a cut (when seven (7%) percent would be the norm).

So, I have contemplated joining the likes of Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter, who have vowed (with, perhaps, tongues in cheek) to support Hillary!

Here is my rationale:

While I respect and admire Senator McCain for using the rules of the Republican Party to his advantage (when Rudy demonstrated that he wasn't salable to the GOP as a whole), I realise his limitations.

Face it, the Winner-Take-All set up worked for the moderate (or should I say, "maverick") McCain.

However, I have three problems with the Arizona Senator (and one of them is not the fact that he was born in The Canal Zone):

1) He has been running--hard--for the Republican nomination since he was knocked out of the 2000 Presidential race. How else to explain the "Gang of Fourteen" nonsense (which was wholly unnecessary, since the so-called Nuclear (Nucular?) Option would have gotten President Bush's nominees for the Federal Bench to the floor of the Senate. And, they would, most assuredly, been confirmed with the Senate acting in its role of providing advice and consent, without las
ting damage to the GOP).

2) He has consistently run to the center. This has alienated those of us on the right. Regardless of what you might think, or say, Nixon's adage of "running to the right in the primaries, to the center in the general election" remains true. I am afraid that the moderates (read independents and Blue Dog Democrats) will vote for the Democrat, when given a choice between a Democrat and a Democrat. I am more afraid that the evangelicals and way-right Republicans will sit out the general. Face it, conservatives vote in greater numbers--when they are engaged--than do liberals.

3) He is very conciliatory toward the Democrats. While I know that this might pay off in the general, I am afraid that his sound bites about Hillary! might just find their way into ads for the Democrat nominee (if it is Hillary!). Then, there is the whole Keating Five debacle (which will come back to haunt him), the unconstitutional McCain-Feingold, and a host of other legislative mis-steps.

As someone noted, how will he feel when one of his SCOTUS nominees is asked about McCain-Feingold, and its dubious constitutionality. Trust me, one more conservative justice (in the mold of Scalia/Roberts/Thomas) and McCain-Feingold is toast.

That having been said, Coulter and Limbaugh have benefited the GOP by their words of support for Hillary! It is helping foment rebellion in the DNC, and is forcing the Democrats to raise (and spend) a shit-ton of money in order to get through what was supposed to be a quick and easy primary season.

So, The Lifeguard remains on the stand, watching, waiting.

And, as the Democrats discuss what is going to happen to the unseated delegates from Florida and Michigan, things are getting interesting.

The Lifeguard Is On Duty

Jury Duty!

The Lifeguard got that dreaded post card in the mail.

"Congratulations, you have been selected to appear on Thursday, March 6th, 2008, to perform your civic duty. Please appear at the [Shire Town] District Court no later than 8:00am to make sure that nobody drowns in the Jury Pool."


Of course, it is widely believed that the only person who is on a jury is the person who is too stupid to get out of jury duty.

We'll see if that is true.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Weep For The Future...

There Should Be A Test...

and I will write it. Of course, it will be in English; and, one must show proof of United States citizenship to sit for it. A score of 90 will get you into the voting booth. Anything less, well, you are just too fucking stupid to make decisions about who will sit in the big boy chair at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Some of the possible questions:

Ford was a:

a) Theatre
b) President
c) Automobile maker
d) Modeling agency
e) All of the above

True or False: Abraham Lincoln once suspended Habeas Corpus, freed the slaves, and was a Republican.

True or False: A Democrat President created the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Park Service, and Earth Day.

Senator Joseph McCarthy (R-WI) was:

a) Right about the proliferation of communists in the State Department and in the Roosevelt and Truman Adminsitrations
b) A typical scare-mongering Republican, who ruined countless lives
c) Vindicated by the declassification of Venona and KGB files
d) A mean, lying drunk who hurt Democrats by questioning their patriotism and loyalty to the United States of America
e) a and c
f) b and d

There will be a time limit, and the prospective voter will have to pay $10.00 to take the test and vote. But, don't worry, there will be a tax credit, so when that voter's tax return is submitted, he (or she) will get the money back...after a fashion.

I hit upon this brilliant idea after watching a panel of Ohio University students explain why they were supporting Senator B. Hussein Obama (D-Mud Hut in Kenya).

Of the five students questioned, not a single one gave an answer that even remotely approached a coherent thought. All of the viewers watching the panel discussion are now dumber for having heard the responses.

Question: "What has Senator Obama done in the Senate?"

Student 1 (a black woman): "I don't know. I feel he has a lot of apathy for the poor."

[Me spitting my Starbucks coffee all over my desk. "For fuck's sake! Apathy? Apathy? Maybe you mean 'empathy'...or 'sympathy'? Get a dictionary, you stupid cow."]

Question: "What legislation has Senator Obama sponsored?"

Student 2 (a pretty, guilt-laden white woman): "You're putting me on the spot, so I can not answer."

Question: "What about you?"

Student 3 (a jockish white male with a bad haircut and a goatee): "I'm sure he's been responsible for a lot. I just can not name anything."

Question: "Same question."

Student 4 (another white guy): "He sponsored fifty (count 'em, fifty) health care bills when he was in the Illinois Legislature."

[Spitting more coffee on my desk. "Why, in the name of all that is holy, did he need fifty bills? Did the people of Illinois need fifty more laws?"]

Student 5 (Emo white guy): "I can tell you one thing he didn't do. He didn't support the illegal war in Iraq."

My head hurts. These idiots are our future. And, the future looks grim.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

My Most Embarrassing Moment...

Jason Castro, the would-be American Idol, was discussing his most embarrassing moment with Ryan Seacrest.

"I was on a date...with a girl."

If you have the need to add "with a girl" to your declaration that you were on a date, you might be protesting too much.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

He Drove The Lane...

shaking off defenders. The point guard took one, two, three, four steps before shooting the ball.

"That's traveling, ref!"

No call.

"That's terrible, ref. He traveled. Ya gotta blow the whistle."

No call. The opposing team inbounds the ball, and starts back down the court.

The fan continues his tirade.

"Hey, dumbass!" I say. "It's the Special Olympics."

The Lifeguard spent the weekend working at the Massachusetts Special Olympics Winter Games, helping several thousand Special Olympians who were playing basketball.

It was inspiring, and amazing. There was a young man with prosthetic legs running up and down the court with the same fervor as the other players. There were young women with various mental and physical limitations; but, who were playing with unlimited heart.

And, above it all, there were a few fans who took insult that the excellent referees, who had volunteered their time on a snowy Saturday, were letting the odd travel, or double dribble, slide.

As a sports official myself, I have frequently dealt with the taunts and complaints of parents and fans who haven't the slightest clue about the rules--or the reality of officiating at any level, let alone the disabled. The fact that anyone would be critical of athletes who had overcome so many barriers to get out on the court is unfathomable to me.

The additional fact that more than one idiot was complaining about the no-calls made me insane.

And, had with these fools devolved into something physical, I had back-up. Lots of it.

Oh, and kudos to the athletes, coaches, and volunteers that made the 2008 Special Olympics Massachusetts Winter Games happen, made them truly special.