s skippy the bush kangaroo: June 2009

skippy the bush kangaroo

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

skippy's tuesday nite music club

going out to all those a*****oles up in sacramento who can't seem to want to work at all for the future of the golden state....to all those republicans willing to drive california to the financial cliff and giving it a big f****you push off.

california....(there it goes.)

phantom planet on david letterman - "california (here we come)"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:14 PM | 0 comments

she deserves to be hated for herself, not because she's a woman

there's a piece in vanity fair about sarah palin, and it's pretty ruthless in its evisceration of her public personae.

now, anyone who reads this humble space knows that we are no fans of the alaskan gov. but we tend to agree w/melissa over @ shakesville (itself no right-leaning organ) who wonders if vf couldn't have written an attack profile on the gov w/o all the condescending bullcrap about her sex:

they are the usual problems with pieces about palin—oblique or overt classism ("the surprise pregnancies, the two-bit blood feuds, the tawdry in-laws and common-law kin caught selling drugs or poaching game [make] billy carter, donald nixon, and roger clinton seem like avatars of circumspection")—and the usual problems with pieces about women—a feisty woman is little more than an animal in need of domestication ("campaign aides cast about for someone who could serve as a calming presence: palin's horse whisperer") or in need of meds for a case of the crazy ("polar disorder," "there were ominous signs—indications of an erratic nature," "more than once in my travels in alaska, people … told me, independently of one another, that they had consulted the definition of 'narcissistic personality disorder' in the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders").

that said, even the (relatively few) passages examining palin's being "at once the sexiest and the riskiest brand in the republican party," even if still insufferably sigh-eliciting ("fertile female," really?), are better than the usual fare, giving time to the reality that palin's appearance is a double-edged weapon:

another aspect of the palin phenomenon bears examination, even if the mere act of raising it invites intimations of sexism: she is by far the best-looking woman ever to rise to such heights in national politics, the first indisputably fertile female to dare to dance with the big dogs. this pheromonal reality has been a blessing and a curse. it has captivated people who would never have given someone with palin's record a second glance if palin had looked like susan boyle. and it has made others reluctant to give her a second chance because she looks like a beauty queen.
but here's the thing (there's always a "thing" about these things, heh): despite the article's being one of the fairer and comprehensive pieces i've seen written about palin—or any female public figure, for that matter (more faint praise)—it's nonetheless given the b-movie monster headline: "it came from wasilla"…

there are, it happens, lots and lots of very good points about palin made in the piece.

and all of them risk being lost beneath the crushing weight of the lazy implication that she is a monster.

worse yet, dismissing her as a monster, as a wild animal, as crazy, is tacit encouragement to pay her no real attention at all. she's not even serious enough to warrant your time.
tho we often think shakesville is too politically correct for its own good (a commentor is reprimanded for using the word "lame," which, we guess, might upset some physcially-handicapped people?), we agree w/melissa about this one.

do we really have to consider palin's fertility when thinking about her career? is that really a salient point? maybe it is for some gopers w/nasty fantasies about their candidates, but, really, aren't we past the time when mothers had to stay at home? as we mentioned on the moderate voice thread about this same subject, how often do male politician's ability to father their own children get ink in the national press?

we're all for a hard look @ what makes sarah tick, and why it's bad for politics. but can we do w/o the strange permutation of the whore/madonna complex, which seems to be "crazy movie monster bitch/baby factory" syndrome?
posted by skippy at 5:29 PM | 4 comments

breaking! coleman's latern burns out!!

norm coleman has conceded to him, al franken.
posted by skippy at 1:04 PM | 1 comments

sanford: "because they're not mine...i crossed some lines"


the gop hypocrisy chickens are still coming home to roost. gov. mark sanford, who voted to impeach bill clinton when sanford was a congressman, now admits to "crossing" certain "lines" w/other women besides his argentine tango partner. asspress:

south carolina gov. mark sanford says he "crossed lines" with a handful of women other than his mistress — but never had sex with them.

the governor says he "never crossed the ultimate line" with anyone but maria belen chapur, the argentine at the center of a scandal that has derailed sanford's once-promising political career.

during an emotional interview at his statehouse office with the associated press on tuesday, sanford said chapur is his soul mate but he's trying to fall back in love with his wife.
well, that's damn decent of him, we must say. however, "never crossed the ultimate line" reminds us of another master disassembler:

posted by skippy at 12:54 PM | 1 comments

yes! senator franken!

Al Franken
Originally uploaded by Aaron Landry
the voters and the mn court say he's good enough...he's smart enough...and gosh darn it, he's going to washington, d.c.

editor's addendum: the minnesota supreme court unanimously rejected norm coleman's appeal. star-trib:

the minnesota supreme court ruled today that democrat al franken won the u.s. senate election and said he is entitled to an election certificate that would lead to him being seated in the senate.

"affirmed," wrote the supreme court, unanimously rejecting republican norm coleman's claims that inconsistent practices by local elections officials and wrong decisions by a lower court had denied him victory.

"al franken received the highest number of votes legally cast and is entitled [under minnesota law] to receive the certificate of election as united states senator from the state of minnesota," the court wrote.

in upholding a lower court ruling in april, the justices said coleman had "not shown that the trial court's findings of fact are clearly erroneous or that the court committed an error of law or abused its discretion."

but the court did not grant franken's bid to make its ruling effective immediately, leaving a window for an appeal by coleman before gov. tim pawlenty is required to issue an election certificate.
of course, if gov. pawlenty is a man of his word, he will go by the court's decision.

but don't hold your breath. pawlenty is, after all, a repubbblican.
posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:49 AM | 0 comments


not just for rural farmers anymore. it's something that urban commuters better be aware of, too.
the d.c. metro accident that killed nine riders this week has renewed calls for rail safety upgrades and reminders that car travel remains far riskier than transit. but the crash is also shedding light on a problem that goes beyond washington: tax shelter deals between banks and struggling transit agencies -- deals that were given a retroactive pass by congress even though the irs considers them illegal.

the tax shelters at issue are called "sale in, lease out" deals, also known as silos. starting in the 1980s, local transit agencies began selling rail cars and other equipment to wall street firms, which would then turn around and lease the goods back to the agencies.

...it remains to be seen whether the silos played a role in this week's d.c. metro crash. but when federal safety inspectors asked the wmata, which runs the d.c. metro, in 2006 to replace its aging rohr series rail cars -- the model that crumpled in this week's crash -- the agency declined.

wmata was "constrained by" silo leases from phasing out the rohr cars, it said.

and that's just the beginning of the fallout from the tax deals, which have affected transit systems all across the country.

Read more »

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:45 AM | 1 comments

republican war on the fec, democratic elections

and rules of law.
election-law experts, supporters of campaign-finance regulations, and even some members of the commission itself are expressing growing concern about a string of cases in which the three republicans on the commission -- led by tom delay's former ethics lawyer -- have voted as a block against enforcement, preventing the commission from carrying out its basic regulatory function. as the normally mild-mannered washington post editorial board wrote recently: "the three republican appointees are turning the commission into the little agency that wouldn't: wouldn't launch investigations, wouldn't bring cases, wouldn't even accept settlements that the staff had already negotiated." - tpmmuckraker
republicans hate an america not run by multinational corporations or the uber wealthy.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:13 AM | 1 comments

so long supreme souter

i knew he was from new hampshire, too....but a fellow "greenie?"
souter departs supreme court with solid environmental legacy. when justice david souter retires from the supreme court today, environmental interests will lose one of their most dependable votes. souter won near-universal praise from environmental court watchers for his dogged questioning during oral arguments. greenwire

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:56 AM | 1 comments

and now, some perspective...

via agi of the guys from area 51, the daily beast on iran and the death of michael jackson:

the jokes popped up almost immediately that mark sanford was the luckiest guy on earth after word broke that michael jackson had suffered a heart attack. but the notion that jackson's death, which preempted virtually all other news coverage on the cable networks last night, is sucking up media attention from other matters carries a dark edge to it as well. national-security experts are warning that without sustained attention on iran, its repressive tactics could grow more deadly in the coming days.

the jackson story, paired with farrah fawcett's death and sanford's own scandal, “without a doubt” poses a danger in iran, according to michael rubin, an american enterprise institute scholar and former bush administration official.


“to put it this way, the gods are not in favor of hope and change,” rubin said. “unfortunately in iran people are going to prison, but when a tree falls in the forest and there's no one to hear it, the pressure goes away.”


“it's a sad commentary that celebrity still trumps national security in news coverage, but that’s the world we live in,” he said...

yes, it is. and it probably sucks big time if you're an iranian. but if you're an american, it works out rather nicely, doesn't it? as long as we're amused, everything's dandy -- twitter doesn't care if the subject is tributes to jacko or protesters in tehran being hauled to prison. it's just... well, amusing... to hear the sad truth coming from a former bush administration official. who did those people listen to when it came to national security for about eight years? the neocons. these clowns have wanted to take ahmadinejad down for years; now they're supporting him. that's precious.

but that's about the level of seriousness we're accustomed to. so if what went on in iraq for the last six years is any indication, the iranians might be better off if we just stay the hell out of that mess and let them sort it out themselves. we like to think of ourselves as that shining city on the hill. well, if the city is las vegas and the hill is in reality a dune? yeah, that sounds like us...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 5:32 AM | 0 comments

Monday, June 29, 2009

skippy's monday nite music club

and now for a little jackson music...of the joe variety. seems that newspapers and journalism back in the 80's were just the same as today....

joe jackson - "sunday papers"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:53 PM | 0 comments

have you sent a govt regulation hating republican

any nestle tollhouse cookies lately? perhaps it could be a wakeup call to them that food regulations are a good thing.

...health officials still do not know how e. coli 0157, a bacterium that lives in cattle intestines, ended up in a product that seems so unlikely to contain it. the risk usually associated with cookie dough is salmonella, a bacterium that can be found in raw eggs. none of the ingredients in the dough -- eggs, milk, flour, chocolate, butter -- is known to host e. coli 0157.

federal investigators spent more than a week at the danville plant and did not detect contamination in the equipment or among workers, acheson said. "it raises the likelihood that it was an ingredient," he said. "and it really means that industry has to be constantly vigilant, because foods we think of as low risk could be contaminated with a deadly pathogen."- wapo

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:57 PM | 2 comments

the great ones always go in 3's...no, 4's...no, make that 5's

we guess god must be putting on a big show in heaven this week...first ed mcmahon...then farrah fawcett...then michael jackson...then billy mays...now fred travelana:

fred travalena, the master impressionist and singer whose broad repertoire of voices ranged from jack nicholson to sammy davis jr. to bugs bunny, has died. he was 66.

travalena, who began being treated for an aggressive form of non-hodgkin's lymphoma in 2002 and saw the disease return last july after going into remission in 2003, died sunday at his home in encino, according to his publicist, roger neal. travalena also was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2003 but had been in complete remission since then….

in school, he said, he learned to deal with bullies by imitating a martian voice or porky pig. and he found he could deflect a teacher's question of why he didn't do his homework by making her laugh with his impression of crazy guggenheim, the goofy character played on tv by frank fontaine during jackie gleason's "joe the bartender" sketches.

during a stint in the army's special services, travalena won the all-army entertainment award for best singer and once impersonated president lyndon johnson's voice on the base theater's answering machine to announce the movies and show times…

at one point after launching his career as a singer, he and his singer wife, lois, were performing together at andrews air force base near washington, d.c.

as recounted in a 1989 new york times story, lois surprised her husband by spontaneously asking the audience, "how'd you like to hear fred do impressions?"

he went on to impersonate dean martin, paul lynde, jim nabors and presidents kennedy and johnson.

"people liked it," he later said.

travalena reportedly was performing at a resort hotel in the catskills when impressionist rich little was in the audience. after the show, little congratulated travalena and later recommended him for a spot in british celebrity journalist david frost's show at the riviera in las vegas.
at that time, rich little was the king of impressionists. to get the go-ahead from him was like getting blessed by the god of impersonations.

rest in peace, fred travalena.
posted by skippy at 12:16 PM | 3 comments

wingers' buttons pushed because palin photoshoppers push wingers' buttons

will they never learn? the story so far:

alaskan blogger linda kellen biegel photoshopped a pic of the gov. & her baby trig, only biegel put the face of alaskan conservative talk show host eddie burke. (ms. biegel was trying to make a point about how cozy the gov. is w/alaskan conservative media. see below)


sarah palin, fresh off her "victory" of making dave letterman apologize, whines because the original pic of her & baby trig is "an iconic representation of a mother's love for a special needs child." that's what her spokesperson said. not us.

will the holier-than-thou self-righteous pearl clutchers never learn? the one sure way to make smart asses act out more is to tell them to stop acting out.

ergo, @ the site something awful (via wonkette), posters ran a whole thread displaying their skills w/photoshop. the results are sometimes brilliant, sometimes disgusting (in the way that south park is sometimes disgusting; ie, hilariously disgusting).

one of the least offensive (but still hilarious) pix:


we personally do not condone the fuss that has resulted from this terrible brou-ha-ha, and we would like to mediate between the parties.

we ask that the lefty bloggers and photoshoppers direct their energies towards something more important, such as the trouble in iran, or passing health care reform thru congress.

and governor, we'd like to apologize on behalf of all of us on the left for your trouble. please, take a breath, and calm down.

here, we brought you a glass of water.

and a banana for your monkey!

good night folks, try the veal! and be sure to tip your waitresses!!
posted by skippy at 9:50 AM | 1 comments

this cat is a nut!

and he's a pretty good bowler for a feline...

posted by Jim Yeager at 6:23 AM | 1 comments

Sunday, June 28, 2009

skippy's sunday night music club

it's a sunday...so a little salvation just might be in order.

neil diamond on the johnny cash show - "brother love's traveling salvation show"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:14 PM | 0 comments

when we think of michael jackson, we think of carol burnett

posted by skippy at 8:24 PM | 0 comments


i'm breakin' the rule here at skippy because there is no way to honor and showcase the volume of life and voice of oxi-clean's billy mays...who has passed away.
tampa police say billy mays, the television pitchman known for his boisterous hawking of products such as orange glo and oxiclean, has died. he was 50. - latimes

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:51 AM | 3 comments

around blogtopia (and yes! we coined that phrase!)

why now? points out that "no new taxes" doesn't mean "no new fees."

leftist grandpa wonders who would jesus shoot?

talkleft muses that the white house might be manufacturing faux grass roots support for indefinite detention.

digby reports that whole litters of lynx kittens have been found in colorado!

and chris clarke, over @ the wonderful coyote crossing, proves that not only can you can go home again, but you have to remodel and rennovate if you do.
posted by skippy at 8:56 AM | 1 comments

Saturday, June 27, 2009

skippy's saturday night music club

ok...perhaps i did a little bit of this at the santa barbara wine festival today...

eric burdon & war - "spill the wine"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:27 PM | 0 comments

yet another beef recall

you probably didn't hear about on the corporate media.
41,000 pounds of beef recalled.
jbs swift beef co. of greeley, colo., has recalled more than 41,000 pounds of various beef products because of possible e.colie contamination but there’s a catch: the beef products recalled were produced back in april and were shipped to distributors and stores in arizona, california, colorado, florida, illinois, michigan, minnesota, nebraska, oregon, south carolina, tennessee, utah and wisconsin. eleven products are being recalled. the problem was discovered as the usda’s food safety and inspection service was testing for samples in an investigation of other products - examiner
keep in mind that republicans don't want inspections...they think that individuals should test their own food stuffs. oh, yeah...and if you get sick from eating some of this tainted food, you better pray you have enough insurance to cover your hospital stay without losing everything you have to pay for it.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:17 PM | 1 comments

gotta a little captain in you?

the tarp bailout plan certainly does.
in june 2008, u.a. virgin islands governor john dejongh jr. agreed to give london-based diageo polc billions of dollars in tax incentives to move its production of captain morgan rum from one u.s. island -- puerto rico -- to another, namely st. croix.

dejongh says he had no idea his deal would help make the world’s largest liquor distiller the most unlikely beneficiary of the emergency troubled asset relief program approved by congress just four months later. - bloomberg

Captain Morgan v2
Originally uploaded by www.dewi1.com

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:51 PM | 4 comments

gas refineries with attitude; or, straight outta nigeria

via tpm, you'd think some russian translator would have researched american slang before coming up w/the final title. bbc news:

russia's energy giant gazprom has signed a $2.5bn (£1.53bn) deal with nigeria's state operated nnpc, to invest in a new joint venture.

the new firm, to be called nigaz, is set to build refineries, pipelines and gas power stations in nigeria.

addendum: via lawyers, guns and money, here is gazprom's big hit, elif4zagin.

posted by skippy at 5:00 PM | 1 comments

never let it be said we had dignity or respect

from eastriver, commenting @ whiskeyfire, en toto:

when farah fawcett got to heaven, and went through the pearly gates, she was greeted by god.

"wow!" exclaimed the holy ghost. "we really enjoyed your work here. especially charlie's angels! i still have a poster in my office of you with that red bikini!"

farah is a little taken aback. "thank you, lord..."

jehovah goes on, "well, i have a special reward for you. i'm prepared to grant you one wish. have anything in mind?"

not one to act selfish and change god's opinion of her, farah thinks for a second and decides upon a wish. "i'd like for all the children of the world to be safe and sound forever."

"done!" exclaims the heavenly father. he snaps, and michael jackson appears next to farah.
too soon?
posted by skippy at 4:22 PM | 8 comments

around blogtopia (and yes! we coined that phrase!)

michael jw stickings has the sad story of a canadian couple denied entry into the us to be w/their sick baby in buffalo.

steveaudio actually worked w/the jacksons back in the day.

mediabloodhound points out cnn convenient forgets about the us backed coup in iran in '53.

the freeway blogger has been biking thru california.

truthdig warns that the american empire is bankrupt
posted by skippy at 3:45 PM | 1 comments

and now, it's king crimson fix for jimmy time...


posted by Jim Yeager at 12:19 PM | 1 comments

question of the day...

aren't you glad you're not a republican?


posted by Jim Yeager at 11:14 AM | 1 comments

i'm off to the santa barbara wine festival

Foxen Wine
Originally uploaded by santa barbarian
to support our wonderful local businesses and to sample their wares.

forgive my posts later this evening...they may, well...be "enhanced"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:37 AM | 1 comments


i can relate.

posted by Jim Yeager at 2:58 AM | 0 comments

had enough michael jackson yet?

have some gentle giant now (and some matthew lombart later):


posted by Jim Yeager at 12:01 AM | 2 comments

Friday, June 26, 2009

some habits never die...

i went and created a noo blawg. i don't know why, though.

maybe i'm just a glutton for punishment...


posted by Jim Yeager at 11:36 PM | 4 comments

skippy's friday nite music club

i can't take wall to wall michael jackson songs anymore...let's get back to making fun of a certain lovelorn hiking republican.

matthew lombart - "(marie's the name) his latest flame

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:19 PM | 1 comments

top story tonite

michael jackson is still dead.


ok, we love his music as much as the next guy, and we see how his death affects a huge amount of fans thru-out the world.

but wasn't there any other news on tv today?

addendum: but as john cole points out, it's still not as bad as the "three day self-absorbed wankfest that followed tim russert’s death."
posted by skippy at 11:15 PM | 5 comments

sleestak cheered by steelworkers, specter disinvited

it's looking not so good for arlen specter in pennsylvania, but it's looking great for pre-historic humanoid monsters. from chris bowers @ open left:

at first glance, joe sleestak reiterating that he is a co-sponsor of the employee free choice act while speaking at a united steelworkers conference doesn't seem like much of a news story. as the title of this post implies, however, there is something that made it very interesting:

u.s. rep. joe sleestak keeps increasing the likelihood that he'll challenge sen. arlen specter for the democratic senate nomination next year.

on sunday, he told the united states steelworkers legislative conference in atlantic city that he backs the employee free choice act, the proposed law that would make it easier for unions to organize.
the catch is that senator arlen specter did not speak at this event. in fact, he was disinvited.

here is the full story, courtesy of an email exchange with jim savage, who is president of a steelworkers local here in philadelphia:

  • "the senator [arlen specter] was invited & confirmed as the keynote speaker."

  • "there was quite an uproar when we found out. he was uninvited because of the rank-and-file reaction."

  • "also, it's worth noting that the senator was none too happy about it."

  • at that point, sleestak was then invited. before he spoke, he was "introduced to the delegates as "our next senator" to a rousing ovation."

  • the general sentiment toward specter was "fuck'm."

i have to say, talking to local union leaders is a lot more fun than talking with communications staff.
here is one artist's rendition of the rally:

sleestak gets cheered by labor
posted by skippy at 3:18 PM | 2 comments

on the inerrant text of scripture

comparing small things great:

sanford: king david didn't resign, so why should i? | tpmmuckraker: "and the south carolina governor started out by using an interesting comparison to respond to calls for his resignation. king david didn't back down after his own sex scandal, he told his colleagues, and neither will i."

obviously the hateful christians became aware of and articulated this new understanding of scripture somewhat after clinton's indiscretions.


posted by Pudentilla at 12:06 PM | 6 comments

michael nicole smith

the mainstream media is at it again. while the most important stories of the day are health care reform and the iranian election protests, the mainstream media is providing non-stop coverage of the death of michael jackson. this is going to be like anna nicole smith all over again. nobody could ever accuse our media of actually caring about stories that matter. i thought they might be humiliated by the criticism of the shallow, absurd, endless coverage of anna nicole smith's death, but they were just waiting for another opportunity to repeat that sort of behavior.
posted by DBK at 10:08 AM | 0 comments

mad aobut mark sanford's trail...of hypocrisy

mad kane, that is!
posted by skippy at 9:21 AM | 1 comments

Thursday, June 25, 2009

fox may suck, but at least it has news on the weekend

we enjoy the rachel maddow show, and we are glad that keith olbermann has his show, to help counter the rightist (read: self-preservationist) tilt of most of the mmm (multi-millionaire media). but beyond that, we find very little to be happy about on msnbc.

we loathe joe scarborough (for reasons dating back to his work as a florida congressman), and the only way andrea mitchell could be any more "establishment" in her presenation and point of view, is if she slept w/alan greenspan. what? oh, never mind, then...

but we are mostly astounded that the cable news division of one of the largest news organizations in the world, doesn't have enough resources to program weekends. we agree w/the latimes:

in recent days, much of the news media's attention has been focused on post-election protests and violence in iran. but at msnbc, the crisis has taken on a bit less urgency, at least if viewers are to judge from what the network is airing.

over the weekend, with its cable rivals devoting generous airtime to demonstrations convulsing tehran and online viewers transfixed by amateur video of a young woman apparently felled by a sniper's bullet, msnbc stuck to its usual diet of taped documentaries, including one titled "sex slaves in america." a rerun of the prison documentary "lockup" aired saturday night. meanwhile, anchor shepard smith was giving viewers of fox news channel a special two-hour wrap-up of iranian developments. cnn likewise devoted substantial blocks of time to covering the crisis live.

on the web, msnbc's coverage decision generated some furious reactions. on twitter, one user called the network "mia"; another wrote, "msnbc closed eyes to murder in iran." and the huffington post's tom d'antoni blogged that msnbc "disgraced themselves this weekend by ignoring the biggest story in the world."
seriously. an entire country, one of america's biggest nemeses, goes up in flames over supposed election fraud, and msnbc can't afford to cut away from "mother knows murder: the jessica aileen kazmadian powell story"?

we noticed msnbc was happy to pre-empt their usual weekend docu-cavalcade of "behind bars: the women of pelican bay" "america's funniest home pedophile videos" when tim russert died.

the cable channel ran a full 48 hours of "boy wasn't tim the best damn journalist in the world" that weekend, which consisted of msnbc's on-air pesonalities talking, reading copy, and introducing taped segments.

hey, msnbc, here's a bit of info for you: that's what it takes to do a news program, too, you morons!!

as much as we loathe the faux news channel, we must needs give it props for original news programming on the weekend. if msnbc wants to ever actually beat faux in the ratings, they had better start broadcasting news on saturdays and sundays.
posted by skippy at 7:04 PM | 6 comments

michael jackson's playground

Michael Jackson's Playground
Originally uploaded by SB John Wiley
santa barbara has long had a love/hate relationship with michael jackson. i remember before jackson came and bought the land he turned into neverland, mccdonalds wanted to build a ronald mccdonald house there. the valley neighbors went nuts saying how much the traffic would impact their lives, yadda yadda yadda. and so the ronald mccdonald house was not to be.

jackson bought the land and created his own little version of childlike reality, including fair rides and a zoo, complete with zoo keepers and various wild animals such as tigers and elephants. the valley was inundated with traffic from helicopters, planes, paparrazzi, etc. including the fiasco that was liz taylor's wedding (was it her 6th or 7th...i can't keep up), but jackson was the local legendary celebrity, so i guess the valley neighbors weren't so vociferous in their complaints.

neverland featured prominently in jackson's problems with the santa barbara district attorney and his long time attempts to convict jackson on child molestation charges. the mug shot seen throughout the internet(s) was taken here in santa barbara. throngs of jackson fans, young and old, male and female, trekked to their idol's mecca to show support. hotels were booked solid. herds of journalists hung out in restaurants and bars, chatting up each other and the locals and starting up relations, professional and otherwise. the "jackson" business was thriving in town, it seemed sometime, to be the only business in town. however, these long, dragged out legal slugfests sucked the county coffers of money and put a large dent in jackson's monetary treasure chest, too.

neverland was never the same after jackson fled the county...and then the states. the animals were neglected and then were shipped out to places where they would be cared for. the employees were neglected and claimed they went unpaid for months on end. the property started aging, falling apart piece by piece, some would say like jackson himself.

today, hearing the unexpected news of the peter panish michael jackson passing, i thought about long ago when there was life...and song...and magic in the old property. in the boyish man himself.

michael, your music brought magic to lives throughout the world. your ranch brought entertainment to many lives in the county and beyond. but, neverland is nevermore.

i hope you find peace in your rest, michael. i hope you don't eventually cross paths with sneddon again.

5560 Neverland Estate
Originally uploaded by SB John Wiley

(flickr photos by sb john wiley)

remembering michael from 1974

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 6:20 PM | 3 comments

john kerry (r)?

kerry wants to wait 10 years for public option? and only if private for profit insurance co's fail to meet certain criteria? wtf?
in a closed-door meeting of senate finance committee democratic members and their staff wednesday evening, sen. john kerry (d-mass.) suggested that the committee bill include a ten-year delay between passage of health care reform and the implementation of a public option that americans could buy into, according to two democratic aides.

under the plan floated by kerry, a public health care option would only be triggered by private insurance companies failing to meet certain criteria after ten years. known as the "trigger" in legislative lingo, the idea is vociferously opposed by health care advocates who consider it the death of reform.- huffpo
i think folks might be showing the senator a certain finger, not necessarily the "trigger" finger.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:57 AM | 4 comments

volcano from space

no...not the newest b-film horror flick, but stunning photos of nature showing off her power to the astronauts on the international space station.

see more at

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:52 AM | 2 comments

farrah fawcett dead at 62

how sad. she was a good actress and she seemed like a nice person. how sad that she died of cancer today at the age of 62.

i was a freshman in college in 1976 and that poster of hers was in practically every college freshman male's dorm room that year (okay, I had the six foot long lord of the rings poster, the one from the covers of the paperback version). i could walk into almost any guy's dorm room and there she'd be in a bathing suit smiling that amazing smile. that's how i'll always think of her. she won't be a charlie's angel and she won't be any of those other roles she played. she'll just be that smiling, beautiful, alive young woman.
posted by DBK at 10:26 AM | 2 comments

npr wants to know

if you know any of these folks.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:21 AM | 0 comments

mad about michael steele's plan for health care

mad kane, that is!
posted by skippy at 8:39 AM | 0 comments


this clip sums up just about everything that the year 2008 was for me in just under seven minutes. the good news is, i lived to blog about it. believe it or not, there were a few moments where i honestly believed i would not live to see this year -- that's how rough 2008 was for me.

well, i'm still here. and last year is gone. so if i come across as too silly or too irreverent at times, too bad -- as my favorite character from the pogo comic strip, porky pine, said so many years ago, "don't take life so serious -- it ain't nohow permanent."

you only live once. never forget that.

and enjoy the clip...

posted by Jim Yeager at 8:29 AM | 3 comments

they distort, we deride...

the tools at fox news do it again. you know things are going really badly for the republicans these days when even their own noise machinists can't come up with any new ideas...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 5:38 AM | 1 comments

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

skippy's wednesday nite music club

in honor of governor mark sanford and his international affairs.

tom lehrer - "the masochistic tango"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:09 PM | 2 comments

chasing the wallaby

some of skippy's cousins are getting into weird trouble in tazmania...they are eating poppies, then getting high and hopping around and around, creating mysterious crop circles. the mercury:

the revelation has also solved what some growers say has spurred a campfire legend about mysterious crop circles which appear in the state's poppy paddocks. in true x-files style, attorney-general lara giddings said yesterday the drugged-up wallabies had been found hopping around in circles squashing the poppies, creating the formations.

the wallabies are increasingly entering the fields and eating the poppy heads.

that causes them to get high and run around in turns creating "crop circles".

"the one interesting bit that i found recently in one of my briefs on the poppy industry was that we have a problem with wallabies entering poppy fields, getting as high as a kite and going around in circles," ms giddings told a budget estimates hearing.

"then they crash. we see crop circles in the poppy industry from wallabies that are high."
dude, don't bogart that poppy...
photo: the tazmanian mercury
posted by skippy at 9:15 PM | 4 comments

what is it with these repressed republicans?

Originally uploaded by A digital life by Rod Rodriguez
and their two-timing tangoing?

wonder if someone will point out to the governor that adultery is against the law in the state that he "governs?"

south carolina's code of laws, title 16--crimes and offenses, chapter 15 "offenses against morality and decency"

section 16-15-60. adultery or fornication.

any man or woman who shall be guilty of the crime of adultery or fornication shall be liable to indictment and, on conviction, shall be severally punished by a fine of not less than one hundred dollars nor more than five hundred dollars or imprisonment for not less than six months nor more than one year or by both fine and imprisonment, at the discretion of the court.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 12:00 PM | 7 comments

down the penrose lane

posted by skippy at 11:41 AM | 1 comments


hasn't it been a problem in argentina for awhile?

why would a governor of a state go to a foreign country, alone, with no security detail and not notify the us embassy there (let alone his staff and family) when there is a chance of being kidnapped?

bizarre. just bizarre.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:35 AM | 5 comments

drink at your own risk

or pony up for your own lab tester...
water quality disclosure not government's job.
government agencies that oversee thousands of small water suppliers in california don't have to order the companies to notify their customers when their water is contaminated, the state supreme court has ruled.
- sfgate
oh, freakin' come on. of course disclosure is the government's job. it oversees the supply and part of "overseeing" isn't just making money, but actually providing a life sustaining substance that won't harm the populace. the public is trusting that the water they are drinking is safe and, companies being for profit in nature will try any which way to save money, but it shouldn't come at the expense of the public. that's where the government comes in. it's there to protect its investment....its citizens. if the current government and its agencies can't do that, it needs to be replaced.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:48 AM | 1 comments

mad about a missing governor

mad kane, that is!
posted by skippy at 8:38 AM | 0 comments

what does success look like?

common ills has a very interesting posting about our great "success" in iraq. which isn't. but the press doesn't tell the story. if we were iranian, we'd be marching in the streets, but it's the us, and we're a bunch of fat, lazy, complacent sheep.

this is what great music looks like:

this is what courage looks like:

here is a group of american voters debating politics:
posted by DBK at 8:30 AM | 3 comments

ah hell, is there anything else we don't know about you?


just one thing: i'm a furry. a gay liberal furry. i think everyone already knows about the gay and liberal parts. but the furry thing... well, i've been a furry for as long back as i can remember -- there just wasn't a name for that back then. now it's official...

hell, let the games begin...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 7:36 AM | 3 comments

the birds and the bees and the flowers and the trees and the moon up above...and a guy they call "gov"

the governor of south carolina disappeared for four days and nobody knew where he was, including his wife. when he came back, the story was that he went for a walk in the woods. for four days. alone. over the father's day weekend. without the knowledge of his wife or his four kids.

his wife's response when asked about her missing husband was that she was "not concerned". she later changed her story to say that he was writing a book and wanted to get away from the kids. he didn't want to get away from them by going to his office where he could probably have complete silence plus access to research materials, nor did he want to check into a hotel room where he could have silence and access to research materials or, at least a writing desk. no, he was walking in the woods all by himself on the appalachian trail...

...which doesn't pass through south carolina.

and now? he claims he was in buenos aires, argentina. duh huh? "it's a great city."

if i were a betting man, i'd bet that the governor was getting his walking stick polished by someone other than his wife. the whole story is awfully fishy, but, surprisingly, nobody claims went fishing.
posted by DBK at 6:04 AM | 13 comments

listen to your mother...

in the comments to this post, my mother wrote:

james, you neglected to say that i quit smoking after having the flu years ago, and i've had nothing but problems with my lungs and sinuses ever since! just as essaress, it takes me forever to bounce back, especially after having pneumonia twice last fall and winter! mom :-)

for the record, mom quit smoking after having the flu years ago, and she's had nothing but problems with her lungs and sinuses ever since. just as essaress, it takes her forever to bounce back, especially after having pneumonia twice last fall and winter. so the bottom line here is, don't smoke. and if you do smoke, then quit now. because it will mess up your health something fierce. (by the way, the culture ghost can tell you all about what can happen if you don't quit smoking, too.)

sorry about leaving all that out, mom. i tend to generalize when i go off on a tangent these days... (good lord, you really are keeping up with skippy's blog. your son's a real piece o' work, ain't he...)


posted by Jim Yeager at 5:19 AM | 5 comments

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

skippy's tuesday nite music club

probably the only really good thing to come out of sacramento....one of my favorite bands...named after the food that our state's politico's are letting us eat....

cake - "short skirt/long jacket"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:14 PM | 2 comments

pistachio recall...same as it ever was...

same as it ever was...well, maybe a little different.

tainted nuts but different packaging.
the u.s. food and drug administration is warning people not to eat california prime produce- or orange county orchards-brand pistachios.

fda officials said orca distribution west inc. of anaheim, calif., received and repackaged pistachios recalled by setton pistachios of terra bella inc. setton had recalled all of its pistachios because of possible salmonella contamination that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections. - upi

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:14 PM | 2 comments

rip ed mcmahon

ed mcmahon, johnny carson's announcer and sidekick for three decades, died today @ the age of 86. nytimes:

mr. mcmahon was one of the most recognizable men in america. with his broad, genial, regular-guy features, he had the face of someone you would buy a used car from. indeed, for decades he was one of television’s most ubiquitous pitchmen, selling everything from boats to beer. he also took a few acting roles and in later years was the host of the long-running television talent show “star search” and wrote some popular books, including his memoirs.

but it was in the role of the faithful tonto to carson’s wry lone ranger that mr. mcmahon made his sideman’s mark. after he rolled out his introduction like a red carpet for introduction like a red carpet for the boss, and after carson delivered his nightly monologue, mr. mcmahon, in jacket and tie, would take his seat on the couch beside the host’s desk, chat and banter with carson a bit before the guests came on and almost invariably guffaw at his jokes, even when he was the butt of them. when the guests did arrive, he would slide over to make room and rarely interrupt.

the work paid handsomely — some reports said $5 million a year — and it made mr. mcmahon a familiar face, and voice, in millions of households. “the tonight show” became the country’s most popular late-night television diversion, and the “heeeeere’s johnny!” introduction became a national catchphrase...

“i laugh for an hour and then go home,” mr. mcmahon once said. “i’ve got the world’s greatest job.”
ed was also known as the host of the original star search, and, along w/dick clark, the host of tv's bloopers & practical jokes.

we are touched by ed's passing. skippy, along w/his friend buzz belmondo (of whom we have spoken before), were lucky enough to work w/ed on a tv project (that never saw the light of day) back in the 90's.

ed was a consumate professional and a lovely person. after watching buzz do his routine only once, ed jumped in for the second rehearsal and fed buzz the straight lines for his jokes. afterwards skippy told buzz, "ed mcmahon was your straight man!" an honor indeed in hollywood.

for a couple of years after that, the skippy's received christmas cards from the mcmahons. ed was a class act and a true hollywood legend.

we suppose god needed someone to introduce johnny carson up in heaven.

rest in peace, ed mcmahon.
posted by skippy at 6:14 PM | 3 comments

south carolina governor sanford wasn't nude hiking

he wasn't on the appalachian trail...he wasn't off writing....apparently he was boarding a plane in atlanta. is this getting really weird or what?
on tuesday, sources told news 4's nigel robertson that a state vehicle is missing and was tracked down, not to the appalachian trail, but to the hartsfield-jackson airport in atlanta.

sources told robertson that a federal agent spotted sanford in the airport boarding a plane. robertson was told that the governor was not accompanied by security detail. - wyff4

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 5:29 PM | 6 comments

congrats to the culture ghost

who gets the "all clear" from his latest pet/ct scan.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 3:11 PM | 2 comments

the rats are leaving the ship

pessimistic executives cash out of shares

executives in charge of the largest us companies sent a signal of their concerns by selling far more shares than they bought this month, according to data based on securities and exchange commission filings.

share sales by so-called company insiders are outstripping purchases so far this month by more than 22 times. trimtabs, the investment research company, said insiders of s&p 500 listed companies have unloaded $2.6bn in shares in june, compared with $120m in purchases.

“the smartest players in the us stock market – the top insiders who run public companies – are not betting their own money on an economic recovery,” said charles biderman, chief executive of trimtabs. - financial times
they want the united states to fail. greed over country.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:43 AM | 3 comments

case of missing governor sanford solved

he didn't want anyone to know he disappeared to go hiking the appalachian trail on "naked hiking day."

(h/t to the fabulous thom hartmann)

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:40 AM | 2 comments

obama signs anti-smoking bill...

from npr:

the family smoking prevention and tobacco control act allows the fda to lower the amount of nicotine in tobacco products, ban candy flavorings that appeal to kids and block misleading labels such "low tar" and "light." tobacco companies also will be required to cover their cartons with large graphic warnings.

the law won't let the fda ban nicotine or tobacco outright, but the agency will be able to regulate what goes into tobacco products, make public the ingredients and prohibit marketing campaigns geared toward children...

whether this law will live up to expectations or not, i don't know. time will tell. new think-of-the-children laws like this one always sound great in theory while the president's ink is still a wee bit wet. but what i do know is my own history of smoking. it goes like this...

my mother used to be a smoker. when i was thirteen, i swiped one of her camels, brought it upstairs to my room, lit it up, and took a puff. that was the first and last puff i ever took on a f*%k&#g cigarette -- all the money in the world couldn't get philip morris' pr department to make me take a second puff, i am done with cigarettes for all time. I have no idea how mom -- or anyone else, for that matter -- has ever gotten hooked on those nasty little things.

just sayin'...


posted by Jim Yeager at 6:01 AM | 7 comments

Monday, June 22, 2009

skippy's monday nite music club

here i thought this song was buddhist in nature...turns out it's all "fox mulder-ish" (and keeping in the ufo theme started by jim earlier....)

travis - "side"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:50 PM | 0 comments

calitics sums up the california dream dilemma

so well....

...but as our infrastructure deteriorates, our manufacturing sector withers, and the innovation inspired by education diminishes, will the middle class really stay in california? could they afford to?

so, with arnold's cuts to calgrants, public schools, community colleges, state parks, and other services utilized heavily by the middle class, will the middle class flee? is this the way that the california dream really ends?- brian at calitics

cue the locusts.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:10 PM | 1 comments

shades of danny boy's potatoe

on saturday, pat buchanan hosted a conference to discuss how republicans can regain a majority in america. during one discussion, panelists suggested supporting english-only initiatives as a prime way of attracting “working class white democrats.” the discussion ridiculed judge sotomayor for the fact that she studied children’s classics to improve her grammar while attending college. the panelists also suggested that, without english as the official language, president obama would force americans to speak spanish.

one salient feature of the event was the banner hanging over the english-only advocates. the word conference was spelled “conferenece.” - think progress

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:37 AM | 5 comments


over at the great orange satan...
daily kos pootie-a-thon to benefit the netroots for the troops effort. in pittsburgh this august, our goal is to pack 300 care packages to be sent to our soldiers stationed overseas...

funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures


posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:47 AM | 1 comments

now that's creepy...

somewhere down the line, maybe within the next two years, i want to start playing live shows again. presently, i have neither the equipment nor the means, so it's all speculative right now. i'm not looking to make a career out of music -- i don't have what it takes to do that, i figured that out years ago. i just want to have a little fun now and then, that's all.

and one of the songs i want to play is boots walker's bizarre little ditty "they're here." i've always loved this tune. but after seeing this clip, i'm not so sure i can do it justice.

enjoy -- if you can...

posted by Jim Yeager at 8:16 AM | 3 comments

a skippy reader in the know responds

to the protocol of the awaiting protocol princess' problems with late returns.
people are still not delinquent until 3 years have passed. 2005 returns just went delinquent on 4/15 of this year.

the guy who said he filed every so often -- well, now it has to be in under 3 years, but he is right about getting back all the overpayments for that period. the computer automatically tacks on interest. anything older than 2006 and they confiscate the overpayments instead of giving you interest. and even when they confiscate the money, they send one last registered letter saying "if you have a good excuse, like you were sick or we are wrong about when you sent it, notify us now." a simple proof of mailing by 4/15 will get the money sent right along, with a delay for internal paperwork.

and these policies are not based on rich/poor -- only on dates of receipt.
i stand corrected..but it still "looks" baaaaaaaaad.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:52 AM | 3 comments

Sunday, June 21, 2009

ten random late night pandora tunes...

during this time of the week, the liveliest area of the part of henrico, virginia i live in is the cemetery outside my living room window. there ain't nothin' goin' on in this neighborhood right now -- i may be the only person in this apartment complex who's still awake. so now seems like a good time to listen to pandora.  let's see what we get this time...

1) "edith wharton's figurines" by suzanne vega. (for anyone who missed it, badtux the snarky penguin posted a father's day
 entry featuring suzanne vega. let's see hallmark come up with something for that one...)
2) "i'm no angel" by dido. (this one keeps popping up whenever i use this particular station. i'm kinda lukewarm on this song. not bad enough to skip, not good enough to fave. but that's just me...)
3) "labour of love" by frente! (never heard of this one. not bad...)
4) "steep" by phish. (a live version. this is one of those songs you wouldn't expect phish to play live. it has only one set of lyrics, and it doesn't really go anywhere -- it just rolls to a stop. but it still sounds good live...)
5) "china cat sunflower" by the grateful dead. (funny how phish and the dead keep turning up back-to-back in these things...)
6) "trouble" by cat stevens. (a lesser known cat song that ends somewhat abruptly. which happens to be a nice artistic touch...)
7) "carolina on my mind" by james taylor. (this is one of the things i absolutely love about pandora: i was never much of a james taylor fan before i started listening to this internet radio site. but since i've been listening to it, a lot of his songs which i've never heard before have been featured. i never realized just how damn good he is. he's a first-rate songwriter. i learn something new every night...) 
8) "dream a little dream of me" by mama cass. (oh, she died far too young. and she had such a great voice...) 
9) "on the train" by janis ian. (whoa! how'd she get in there?)
10) "holes to heaven" by jack johnson. (this is another artist i keep hearing on pandora. i like the guy, but for some reason, i keep thinking of the rhino song whenever i hear him. if you're reading this, jack, i am sorry, i can't help it...)

and that's that...


posted by Jim Yeager at 11:17 PM | 1 comments

skippy's sunday night music club

happy father's day to all the dads out there!

will smith, his son and a few friends - "just the two of us"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:50 PM | 0 comments

goldman sachs...most profitable year ever

what do these people construct? create? manufacture? farm? have they fought fires? saved a community? saved a life with care? nothing. they do nothing except tanking the global economy why the h**l do they deserve bonuses? they deserve nothing. nothing but public scorn.

staff at goldman sachs staff can look forward to the biggest bonus payouts in the firm's 140-year history after a spectacular first half of the year, sparking concern that the big investment banks which survived the credit crunch will derail financial regulation reforms.

a lack of competition and a surge in revenues from trading foreign currency, bonds and fixed-income products has sent profits at goldman sachs soaring, according to insiders at the firm.

staff in london were briefed last week on the banking and securities company's prospects and told they could look forward to bumper bonuses if, as predicted, it completed its most profitable year ever. figures next month detailing the firm's second-quarter earnings are expected to show a further jump in profits. warren buffett, who bought $5bn of the company's shares in january, has already made a $1bn gain on his investment. - the guardian

it's time we start rewarding folks who actually do something.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 3:45 PM | 3 comments

new rules...

because putting things in perspective is a good thing...

posted by Jim Yeager at 2:53 PM | 4 comments

watching the events in iran and listening to talking heads

i'm just wondering if the republicans are so concerned about election integrity, why didn't they care about the lack of integrity in our own elections in 2000 and 2004? why are some republicans pleading guilty to voter registration fraud? why is it that citizens of a country that many in the u.s. want to bomb to smithereens seem to want to fight and die for their vote while u.s. citizens could care less about even showing up to the polls.

just wondering.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:55 AM | 3 comments

too funny...too true


(h/t linkmeister in the glorious "foreign land" known as hawai'i.)

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:16 AM | 0 comments

Saturday, June 20, 2009

skippy's saturday night music club

it's summertime so a little seasonal music...

janis joplin - "summertime" (live in stockholm 1969)

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:05 PM | 4 comments

question of the day

"...how the h**l does cow sh** (e. coli o157:h7) get into nestles' toll house cookie dough?"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:40 PM | 7 comments

this is amusing...

last night, i stopped at a southwestern-type restaurant on my way to work for some overtime and extra cash. i ordered a big-assed chicken burrito with salsa, onions, sour cream, lettuce, hot peppers, and god remembers what else (which weighed about 1.5 pounds and got me through the night no problem whatsoever). i got my order, went to the register, and the clerk asked me if i was a college student. with a smile, i said something like, no, but i was about twenty years ago.

he kinda blushed and said, "you can't always tell." that was even funnier. i haven't shaved for a week, and the restaurant was well lit -- i wanted to say something like "are you color-blind when it comes to gray" because my face keeps sprouting gray hairs faster than i can be bothered to shave them off. that used to bug me. but now, i'm flattered as hell -- anyone with functioning eyes can see that i'm going gray, and yet there remain those who wonder aloud if i'm 21 -- even when i'm not buying beer!

what the hell, take whatever breaks you're offered...


posted by Jim Yeager at 11:53 AM | 10 comments

one more tally hall video, and i'll cut it out...

twenty bucks says skippy reader mahakal will love this one.


posted by Jim Yeager at 11:06 AM | 6 comments

recommended reading...

mark everett is the musician known as "e." he's the frontman of the band eels. earlier this month, cookie jill devoted a music club post to the making of eels' new album, "el hombre lobo." i didn't even know eels was still together -- up to that point, i thought the band had scored one hit with "novocaine for the soul" back in the 90s, and then they disappeared into thin air. so i was pleasantly proven wrong and surprised.

a quick visit to wikipedia informed me that everett has also written an autobiography. another quick visit to my local library's website confirmed that it had a copy of the book. and every review of it i'd seen gave it high marks. so obviously i had to go there and check it out right away. i've been reading it at some points and catching up on my eels music during others for a week or so.

frankly, i'm impressed. this guy wrote his autobiography the same way he writes his songs -- straightforward and without pretense. it is not at all a pretty story -- lots and lots of darkness, despair, and death have found their way into everett's life over the years, and these elements are present in stark detail in the bulk of his music, too. but through his music, he has found a way to deal with all of that pain and suffering and even own it so that it won't own him.

also, everett has a thoroughly enjoyable sense of humor, even after all he's been through. that's always a good sign, no matter how hopeless or depressed one gets. (trust me, i know.) and the title of the book is amusing in its own right -- he doesn't have children of his own, let alone grandchildren. not yet, anyway.

people occasionally say, "if life gives you lemons, make lemonade." well, life gave mark everett a few wheelbarrows full of $#!+, and he used them as fertilizer to write great songs -- and a fine autobiography for good measure. i recommend adding it to your reading list. you will definitely want to thank me later...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 9:47 AM | 2 comments

it's summer solstice parade time!

Summer Solstice - float
Originally uploaded by santa barbarian
here in santa bbq.
posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:26 AM | 1 comments

foreclosure causes pain

for animals, too.
one day soon, deputies may shutter the ranch and evict the retired emergency room nurse, likely spelling the end of a rescue operation that has saved hundreds of neglected and abused horses.

"this is the worst thing that has ever happened to me," she said, standing in the doorway of her near-empty house.

like thousands of riverside county residents, duncan, 63, fell on hard times, refinanced and ended up with a monthly mortgage she couldn't afford. during the housing boom, she said, her ranch was valued at $2.4 million. now the bank says it's worth about $345,000. she was scheduled for eviction monday but won a last-minute delay friday. for how long, no one knows.

unlike others who can just pack up and leave, however, duncan must relocate the contents of a small noah's ark.

"she was operating a very well-run rescue group," said john welsh, spokesman for the riverside county department of animal services. "you can't just say you love animals. you have to prove it, and she has."

as the operation grew, so did the costs.

then, in 2005, duncan was diagnosed with tongue and throat cancer. undergoing treatment, short of money and no longer working, she refinanced three times. each time, she was charged thousands of dollars in fees. - latte times
and why did she refinace primarily? to cover her medical bills.

can any animal loving hollywood star help out? maybe donate half of your multi-million dollar salary for one picture to someone who is doing some good in our society...saving lives of horses.

hey, sylvester stallone and tommy lee jones...y'all play polo...and kevin costner and kevin klein, you guys rode horses in silverado. can you pony up a few bucks to help?

meadowbrook animal sanctuary & haven
18285 collier ave. suite k, po box 106, lake elsinore, ca 92530; or call 951-505-7871
e-mail: mashrescue1@aol.com

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 6:53 AM | 1 comments

Friday, June 19, 2009

skippy's friday nite music club

this goes out to all those congresscritters "working" on healthcare

joe smith - "games people play" (grammy award winner for best song - 1970)

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:50 PM | 2 comments

mad about don't ask don't tell

mad kane, that is!
posted by skippy at 8:57 PM | 1 comments

things are heating up

rising ocean temperatures near worst-case predictions. the ocean is warming about 50 per cent faster than reported two years ago, according to an update of the latest climate science. - melbourne age

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:23 AM | 0 comments

question of the day, california citizens only...

gray davis or arnold schwarzenegger -- which is worse?


posted by Jim Yeager at 9:09 AM | 4 comments

california leading the way yet again

but not in the way that we like to hear.
california's unemployment rate shot up to 11.5% in may, its highest level since current record-keeping began more than three decades ago.

...the national unemployment rate for may was 9.4%. - latimes
now i don't think this 11.5% includes those folks who have given up the job hunt, those who are not qualified to file for unemployment insurance or those folks who are underemployed. to factor in those, estimates of the true unemployment in california can range up to 15%.

we're hurting and sacramento is just playing freakin' political games.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:49 AM | 1 comments

how the hell do you not file tax returns

and still get a nod to work in the government? you blame the postal service? if you knew you were going to get a refund...wouldn't you be on the horn to the irs wondering where the check was?
choice as chief of protocol for the state department, a position that carries the status of an ambassadorship, did not file tax returns for 2005 and 2006, errors she corrected last november.

the nominee, capricia penavic marshall, has placed blame for the problem on the postal service and on miscommunication between her husband and their accountant.- nytimes
apparently this woman is clueless on the protocol we working slobs of the country have to adhere to. if one of us "non wealthy, non connected" americans didn't file tax returns for 2 years, we'd have the irs breathing down our neck threatening to take everything we have.

2 americas. it's not democratic vs. republican...it's rich vs. poor.

*update* - a skippy reader in the know responds...
people are still not delinquent until 3 years have passed. 2005 returns just went delinquent on 4/15 of this year.

the guy who said he filed every so often -- well, now it has to be in under 3 years, but he is right about getting back all the overpayments for that period. the computer automatically tacks on interest. anything older than 2006 and they confiscate the overpayments instead of giving you interest. and even when they confiscate the money, they send one last registered letter saying "if you have a good excuse, like you were sick or we are wrong about when you sent it, notify us now." a simple proof of mailing by 4/15 will get the money sent right along, with a delay for internal paperwork.

and these policies are not based on rich/poor -- only on dates of receipt.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:37 AM | 11 comments

hoppy kangaroo blogging friday

Country romance
Originally uploaded by aaardvaark
start of a romantic weekend version (the roo's...not me)

more furry fun and frivolity over at the modulator's friday ark

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:09 AM | 1 comments

Thursday, June 18, 2009

skippy's thursday nite music club

really...what is so funny 'bout peace, love and understanding?

elvis costello (disguised as a late nite talk show host) and "peace, love and understanding."

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:07 PM | 3 comments

illegally download 24 songs

that will be $1.92 million dollars please.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 5:15 PM | 3 comments

bank of greedy tax sucking america hating bloodsuckers

also known as bank of america...recipient of taxpayer bailout money..is doling out big buck bonuses again.
bailed-out bank of america has been doling out millions in bonuses in an effort to lure talent and keep investment bankers who management views as vital, sources tell the post.

...the guarantees being shelled out by the embattled bank run by ceo ken lewis are raising eyebrows on wall street because bofa has taken $45 billion in capital from the troubled asset relief program and hasn't been allowed to refund that money. - the nypost
lure "talent?" yeah...tanking the county's economy took real talent.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:59 AM | 2 comments

the united states won't enforce anti-trust laws

but china will.

a senior chinese official yesterday attacked the planned iron ore joint venture between rio tinto and bhp billiton, raising expectations that beijing may use its antitrust law to try to scupper the deal.

chen yanhai, head of the raw material department of china's ministry of industry and information technology, told state media that the joint venture "has an obvious colour of monopoly" and should be subject to china's anti-monopoly laws. - financial times

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:22 AM | 3 comments

we can't buy american in our stimulus package

but they can buy chinese in theirs.
it’s official: china wants to shut foreign companies out of its 4-trillion-yuan ($586 billion) economic stimulus package. the "buy chinese" command laid down publicly by top planners in beijing will unavoidably intensify the tension between china and its trading partners. - forbes
and it could hamper our green economy
a controversial "buy chinese" policy could leave overseas manufacturers of wind turbines and other renewable energy technologies locked out of the bidding for new low-carbon projects undertaken as part of china's $586bn (£361bn) economic stimulus package. - business green

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:09 AM | 1 comments

and now... a little more music...

this band calling itself tally hall? i totally love it. i've posted one of their videos before. last month, in fact. but tally hall is my new leonard cohen -- when i stumble upon an act i truly love from the bottom of my heart, i just can't seem to stop praising it no matter how hard i try. 



posted by Jim Yeager at 8:45 AM | 6 comments

one hell of a great call -- and then some...

from the culture ghost back in december:

on the off chance anyone even noticed i reinstated americablog on the blogroll. i had removed them over the summer when their "coverage" of the campaign became so vituperative. but i think it's going to be a lot of fun watching them as the new president is revealed to them...call me sadistic

and from john aravosis yesterday:

i was surprised to see the human rights campaign's president joe solmonese standing with openly-gay reps. tammy baldwin and barney frank behind president obama at a white house event that most considered a thinly-veiled attempt to divert attention from the uproar over the white house's total abandonment of its campaign promises to our community. is it just me, or is terribly inappropriate for our leaders to be giving the president cover at this time, when just today his spokesman reaffirmed that the president stands behind the homophobic doma brief that equated our marriages with incest and pedophilia?

my sense is that tammy, joe and barney are giving the president cover, and you don't give him cover unless and until he fixes the problem. these benefits do not fix the problem. they don't even scratch the surface (and in fact, they're not even new benefits). tammy and barney, for their part, continue to host a gay fundraiser for the dnc, along with jared polis, next week even though the gay attendees are dropping out like flies.

i'm just very disappointed.

i am, too. just not for the same reasons. but first i want to say: you called it spot on, ghost. you nailed him good -- and frankly, you've schooled me, too. in a mere five months. good work -- as always. but i'm not finished with this yet after all...

i honestly did not get the impression that same-sex relationships were being compared to incest or pedophilia when i first got wind of this legal brief. and believe it or not, i still don't get that impression from the way it's worded. call me blind, but what i see is the doj using cases where one state's laws disagree with those of another in explaining its defense of doma. i didn't like the fact that it defended doma, but i was far more upset that a mormon co-wrote that brief. which might explain how those incest and pedophilia cases got in there in the first place. i liken letting a mormon cult member co-write that doj brief to letting randall terry run a women's clinic -- don't tell me ideology had no hand in this whatsoever.

but that's where i part ways with john aravosis. i just don't know why. maybe it's because when the topic of gay sex pops up (pardon the pun), i automatically think of two gay adult males in the process of making each other very happy. :-) typical queerboy reflex, sue me if you don't like it. and the second thing i think of is two adult lesbians making each other very happy -- and there ain't nothin' wrong with that either, ladies and gentlemen. relatives and children simply do not come (again, pardon the pun) to mind.

so i don't really share the same outrage that the long-time gay rights advocates possess. i don't even have that capability -- i finally faced the truth about my homosexual nature only one year ago, what could i possibly say now that would be on a par with what john aravosis has been saying forever? we're both gay men, but we still have two mutually foreign outlooks. he looks at this brief and wonders why obama would compare same-sex relationships to incest; i look at it and ask myself, first cousins can marry in new mexico?!

damn, people, how f&%k#d up is that?

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posted by Jim Yeager at 7:18 AM | 7 comments