Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Fuck you, Shingles, Fuck you, Bing.

Fuck you, Shingles bastards. You spend -- what? -- ten million or so pushing these goddamn commercials on us. Yes, I had fucking chickenpox. So now that means I have to let you scare me and give you money? Fuck you.

Oh yeah, I don't know if this is a statement of memory or not, but I don't remember a lonelier holiday season. I have the emotional stability of a dingy in a monsoon.

My dad was Bing Crosby. The rest of the world saw him one way. To me he was a monster. But I think I was wrong about that, too. He was just another challenge I failed to overcome.

I have a brand-fresh, brand-new love and respect for anyone who has gone -- or is going through -- separation and divorce from their spouses and life-partners. Thank god for friends.

I can't believe Winter just started.


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Why The President's Gun Comments Are Brave

I think it is incredibly brave that The President commits himself to confront the NRA. Such a nutty bunch of well-armed people pose a credible threat. 

He just went in front of microphones and re-committed to examining gun laws and possibilities of making changes that might keep us all a little more safe from wild harvests of pain and confusion like Friday's mayhem in Connecticut. 

Let's remember that so far all that Mr. Obama has proposed are a discussion and a committee. 

NOT corralling all your guns. 

Not demanding background checks. 

Not ending sales of weapons and ammunition at gun shows. 

Not even mandatory background checks for ALL firearm purchases in the U.S.A. 

Gun owners define reactionary behavior. 

Take five or ten minutes in the next week and read some of the posts from people and groups that disagree with the idea of examining gun laws and possibly limiting public access to weapons.

We all need to calm down and remember the dead kids here, the aching parents and the fact that we all might be here next year. 

Do we really want to have another year like this last one? 

BTW All of these posts came before the Newtown shootings last week. 

4) "Obama hints at handgun restrictions"

3) "Take a look at Obama's Anti-Gun history, Then imagine what the future will be like with him in charge of your guns."

2) NRA Fact Sheet : "Why Obama Will Take Your Guns"

1) A top official with the National Rifle Association said Friday that President Obama will move to "destroy" gun rights and "erase" the Second Amendment if he is re-elected in November.

Read more:

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

I am Adam Lanza's mother - article response

I am Adam Lanza's mother - article response

No one wants to send a 13-year old genius who loves Harry Potter and his snuggle animal collection to jail. But our society, with its stigma on mental illness and its broken healthcare system, does not provide us with other options. Then another tortured soul shoots up a fast food restaurant. A mall. A kindergarten classroom. And we wring our hands and say, “Something must be done.”


This is an article that will make you uncomfortable. Either that, or confirm your zombie status. 

In it, a young mother tells of a few instances of violent confrontations with her thirteen year old mentally ill son. It is dramatic, and powerful and withering. She does not provide hope or answers. She only tells us how it has been for her for years.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Our Magic Planet

The very best thing for me is curiosity. When I am occupied in a search for answers I can endure anything and remedy most adversity. Currently lots of people are concerned with the end of the world due to one interpretation of one calendar. This is fascinating in itself and seems to lead down the same path that directs us to watch the building burn but not standing or being built; the car crash but not the physics and engineering of the highway. There is a part of us that wants or needs to see disaster and this part of our brain is in full flower now with this 12/21/12 thing coming up soon. But I am more occupied by something else that keeps jumping up to catch my attention while I chase these little disaster stories.

This world is impossible.

Take just a quick look at where we are.

For a very long time, we have lived here on this planet, knowing no other home. This planet -- a rock with a molten volcanic core we have never seen or measured -- has a strong magnetic field around it that we have used to our advantage, steering boats at sea. But that is a small part of the function of this field. Without it, we are not just lost, we are dead.

For we exist in a wobbling, spinning orbit around a constantly exploding bomb called The Sun that while it warms us and provides us with the energy we need to exist, also delivers a lethal dose of radiation with every sun warmed beach and picnic spread. This radiation is blocked by the powerful magnetic field created mysteriously within the pyroclastic flow far beneath the surface we rarely venture off of. We are so dependent upon this that we do not question it or deal with it much at all. But if it goes away or wavers for even a short time, we will be Ramen Noodles in the microwave.

And yet we worry about mortgages and sick pets; we save money for vacations and shiny new toys to buy ourselves. Weird, huh?


For more weirdness, catch Hard Work Hour with Douglas Douglas on Blog Talk Radio. Live Friday mornings, and archived on Itunes anytime.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Homosexuality is like Murder - Justice Scalia

“If we cannot have moral feelings against homosexuality, can we have it against murder? Can we have it against other things?

Okay, I just got off of Facebook (with great difficulty; I believe the disease is progressive) and find myself in conflict with my online buddy Justin Rosario. I have happily read his posts on Proud To Be A Filthy Liberal Scum for some time now. 

But I disagree with his current thread regarding Supreme Court Justice Antonia Scallia's comments regarding Homosexuality. 

JR/PTBALS excoriates Scalia for equating homosexuality with murder. What follows is a long line of barely intelligibly harsh responses, mostly to whether Scalia deserves to live or not.  None address Scalia's comments in context or his logical argument. By that I do NOT mean that I agree with Justice Scalia. But ignoring his (and all The Court's members) high level of discourse and smarts is just lazy. 

My reading tells me that the Justice was expressing an opinion by asking a question: "If I can't have an opinion on this, what CAN I have an opinion on?" 

This is a grammatically correct question and deserves to be answered. 

However, it is quite challenging and has so far been ignored by all the people gathering wood to burn the Justice at the stake. 

I do not care to defend or explain much beyond saying that more reading is necessary and thought before you impress me. And isn't that what you all want?

My conflict reminds me of Guess Who's Coming To Dinner? and the shit storm it stirred up 50 years ago. In the climactic scene, Spencer Tracy makes first an overview of the situation and then picks one particular place to dig in. His skills of elocution and logic are sublime and he makes a compelling argument. 

So to, does Scalia.

No, I don't agree with him. But I did take the time to read most of his speech. I wonder if the many people posting harsh, negative, and often profane responses to the headline and not to Scalia's statements or his argument, read anything at all. 

I do not wish to silence anyone, just to make my contribution. Here is my suggestion (It is the same I give to all my students at some point) : Slow down. Read the problem.

Slowing Down would be the opposite of reading a couple of words and deciding what their meaning is and how you feel about it. Slowing down here would mean reading a little more of the speech Justice Scalia was making, and how his statements are couched. Also, since this comes not in the speech, but in the Q&A after, the question posed should be examined. 

I believe that my feelings could be loosely grouped with Samuel Clemens' on Last of The Mohicans when he disagreed with reviewers of the competing novel in this way: 

"It seems to me that it was far from right for the deliver opinions on Cooper's literature without having read some of it. It would have been much more decorous to keep silent and let persons talk who have read Cooper."
I feel the same about most of these postings. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Governor Romney

Governor Romney,

In my world, you have had a very soft life. I do not ignore the challenges your family has gone through, though I am ignorant of them. You have always had enough money. You have made your whole career about what to do with the extra money. You do not seem to be the least bit curious why someone would be so short of money. To you it is obvious: lazy, thoughtless people get less money than the working and planning do.

In my world, Governor Romney, you are a lost and desperate man, surrounded by wealthy people just as blind and just as scared. You lost my vote because you are a blind man telling me I can not see.

With sincere curiosity,

Douglas Whiting

Douglas Whiting
Discovery Learning Tutoring,
A California Institution for Learning
310 435 8477