I gave money today. Money I do not have really. But I voted and gave. C'mon vote. Do it. Or I'll be disappointed. More after the break.
My son goes to San Antonio Madison High School. Today at about 10:30 a.m. I got an email from the school saying that they were on "lock down." This is an unfortunate term that has come into school lingo since Columbine. At about 11:30 a.m. I got another email telling me the "lock down" had been lifted. I was busy. I knew that schools are extremely cautious these days. Sometimes a burglary in an adjacent neighborhood can trigger a "lock down." But then my wife texted me and told me what really happened.
Kathleen Parker is an opinion writer for the Washington Post who got published in my local paper in San Antonio today with an article titled "Too Much Glee Over Abortion Filibuster." As she probably did not write that headline I will quote what she wrote in the last paragraph on her dismissive essay about Senator Davis and the folks who supported her in the gallery in Austin during her filibuster: "One may agree with Davis' principled stand on the Texas bill, which, she argued, tried to do too much. Even so, a little less glee from the bleachers would seem more appropriate to the moment." "Glee"? Really? Is that what she heard from the "bleachers"?
What Wendy Davis did last week was amazing. When I was a kid growing up in Austin, my dad was an attorney for a prominent state agency, so I have been in the capitol building often. I remember once watching a filibuster in the late seventies and my father explaining to me what all the legislator had to do to keep it going. I called my dad the other night while Davis was hitting about hour ten of her stance. He predicted exactly what was going to happen. He told me the Republicans would catch her on a point of order regarding staying on topic. Given their numbers, they would win out too he said, even if what they were saying was bunk. Like he is so many times, my dad was right on.
I am a sports radio nut. Listening to the soap operas in the world of sports is a great escape from the stress of life. Because I took a job close to Dallas, I began listening to a new sports radio station called 105.3 The Fan. Now, most sports talk hosts have a right wing viewpoint. But, on The Fan, there was a certain show called Rage that featured two hosts with a female sidekick on the afternoon drive shift that was a little different. The main host was a man named Richie Witt. He is a veteran of Dallas/Ft. Worth newspapers and is known for running around with the likes of Troy Aikman during the Cowboy glory days of the early nineties. The other host was a man named Greg Williams (better known as Greggo) who was a radio legend in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area until he flamed out as a drug addict and lost his main gig. I began listening in November. By the spring, the show had self-destructed, the hosts and sidekick had been fired, and the feud between Richie Witt and Greggo has blown up on the internet in the form of competing blogs. Why should Daily Kos be interested? See below.
I get that CPAC is fun to cover. Listening to the right wing speak to their base and push out one liners crafted for our Twitter society entertains us much like a Steven King novel or movie. We all sit around and say, "Can you imagine if these folks actually had the power?" (They actually do in my state and its more like a Greek tragedy.) Today Sarah Palin is living up to her reputation and is currently reeling off the one liners as fast as Andy Kroll from Mother Jones can tweet them. But, the real deal is going down in Michigan. It has been since the Republicans pushed through their Emergency Manager bill and now the you know what is about to hit the fan as the take over is on in Detroit.
This week I took my two teenage boys to the state capitol building in Austin. The legislature is in session right now and I wanted them to be aware of where the laws of the state are voted on, including those that have a direct influence on them as students. As we entered the east side of the building we were forced to go through metal detectors. My oldest son was actually stopped as his belt buckle (a very small one) set off the detector. A department of public safety officer then pulled him to the side to wand him. I chuckled to myself knowing that if my son had a concealed handgun license he probably would be able to walk through this system unmolested.
I live in San Antonio, the home of Clear Channel Communications the company that employs Rush Limbaugh. His show is broadcast here on WOAI, a station with the nickname "Blowtorch" since its signal at night can be heard widely across the American southwest and northern Mexico. When I moved to San Antonio in 1993, the station actually had a liberal host of its afternoon drive show and attempted to maintain a neutral political stance on most issues. Rush was broadcast on another station at the time. (That station, KTSA, had local hosts who considered Rush too liberal.) Since then, however, WOAI has tacked to the extreme and now features Beck, Hannity, and Limbaugh. It's drivetime host features a man who fills in for Beck and parrots the right wing talking points of the day. To my great sadness, the station also broadcasts my beloved San Antonio Spurs and Texas Longhorns. I absolutely hate to have to listen to Beck, Hannity and Rush promos during those games. And, after this week it's even worse.
Here is the Madison High School Orchestra and Choir and Band not celebrating Christmas at a local church last year (the school's performing arts center was being constructed through, shock, a bond supported by the community). Why do we let these Republicans get away with so many lies (not to mention the right wing Christian evangelical community) about what happens in our public schools? If you believe the lies, which many do, you would think the poor Christian community in this country was being persecuted daily and our public schools were federal led, atheistic homosexual propaganda houses.
What Would Jesus Do? - I guess whine and complain (that's snark, I know).
Happy Festivus. See you at the Feats of Strength.
I was watching Keith last night and Kos came on and discussed the idiot running my state right now and his new ad in Iowa. It's a laughable ad, by a laughable candidate and there are plenty of blog entries outlining how idiotic a comparison Perry made between homosexuals serving their country and school children. But what folks are not talking about is just the bold faced lies Perry served up despite the reality in his own #^%#^^ing state.
Climate change/global warming scares me. Naomi Klein scares the hell out of me. Have you read her latest article in the Nation? "Capitalism v. the Climate" was my morning reading today and she didn't disappoint. I have heard her on Maddow, read her tweets on Twitter, and read some of her articles. Frankly, as a father of three, I'm too scared to read The Shock Doctrine. Sorry Naomi, nothing personal, but, crap, if you are right, I'm not sure I want my children having children.
I think one of the great mistakes of those of us today who call ourselves liberals (I used to consider myself a mainstream Democrat) was allowing Rush Limbaugh, et al, to peddle hate radio unanswered for so many years starting in the 80s. I remember the rise of Rush and right wing talk well as a high school student who loved sports and listened to tons of AM talk radio. I saw the gradual change in the mood of the country as a young adult amazed that even folks in my own chosen profession of public education were faithful listeners, even buying all sorts of trinkets like giant "Rush is Right" coffee mugs. I was disheartened as people I went to church with became adherents to right wing social policy. As I still am a sucker for sports, to this day my radio stations are all tuned to the AM dial in my car. My job requires me to be in my car for hours during the week during Rush's show and those who copy him (Beck, Hannity, local right wingers), so every now and then I listen to a little tidbit. I guess I'm a little masochistic. I dialed in Rush this Friday for a mere five minutes and found out a little bit about myself from the cigar lover...
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