Posted tagged ‘McCain’

A Letter to John McCain from the Office of God

November 3, 2008

(NOTE: Once again, a sequence of words has appeared in my mind seemingly of their own accord, prompting me to conclude that, for second time, I have been selected by God (or, in this case, His assistant) to convey a message to someone here on Earth. I reproduce them below. E.W.)

Dear Senator McCain:

If it please you, the Lord (From Whom All Blessings Flow) conveys His most divine and sincere apology for not writing you Himself. He (Than Whom There is No Other God) is presently occupied with composing a Writ of Holy Judgment for Mr. George W. Bush, and is finding the task of adequately summing up the past eight terrestrial years to be, as He (To Whom All Praise is Due) puts it, “a challenge even unto My abilities, resources, and omniscience.”

As someone who has attempted to distance himself from the actions and positions of Mr. Bush, yea, even after two terms of all-but-complete fealty to his program and projects, you can, I am sure, appreciate the Lord’s dilemma. There is scarcely an aspect of American life, from the most purely abstract (such as the definition of words such as “torture” and “science”) to the most fundamentally concrete (the prosecution of war) that has not been directly influenced and affected by Mr. Bush and his administration. No wonder God (Blessed be He and Blessed be His Name) has His Right-Hand, as well as His Left-Hand, full.

Therefore He has asked me to “drop you a line” detailing some of the topics He intends to discuss with you after November 4, including certain aspects of your recent behavior that have deeply disturbed and concerned Him.

As others (such as, for example, Mr. Ellis Weiner, of whose mind and computer I have taken the liberty of availing myself for this communication) have said more eloquently than I, you have, over the past year, systematically rejected, betrayed, and turned your back upon every single principle for which you so famously and admirably stood during the past decade. An incomplete list of these violations would, alas, include the facts that:

– Having experienced torture firsthand and announced your opposition to its use, you nonetheless supported the Military Commissions Act, which granted the President the right and ability to decide, on his own, which of the Geneva Accords did and did not apply to the U.S. This, as you were well aware, tacitly enabled the C.I.A. to conduct “waterboarding” and God (BBHABBHN)-knows-what other torturous interrogation techniques.

– Having undergone the scurrilous smearing of yourself and your family during a previous election, you hired the very people who traduced you in order to visit the same treatment–which you previously denounced and deplored–upon your opponent.

– Having (properly) condemned right-wing religious blowhards and bigots, you came to court them openly and praise them unto their (vile, deceitful) face.

– Having said, over and over, that your “first criteria” for selecting a Vice-President was that he or she be able to “take your place” immediately as President, you then chose someone who a) cannot accurately define even what it is that a Vice-President does, b) believes that living “next door” to Russia gives her foreign policy experience, c) openly mocks intelligence and accomplishment as “elitist” and d) apparently imagines that we are currently at war with Iran.

You are, I am informed by the Supreme Authority Himself, not responsible for the things Sarah Palin says. Is not, in this respect, His mercy a thing of everlasting beauty? But you are, He bids me remind you, responsible for having chosen her, and defended her nonsensical utterances, and asserted that she “knows more about energy than probably anyone else in the United States of America.”

I myself can attest that, at this and similar absurd statements, the angels weep. (Most of them. The cherubim and the seraphim find this woman, and your defense of her, quite risible and laugh almost without cease.)

Meanwhile, the topic of Sarah Palin and the ultimate disposition of her soul remains, to the deep regret of God Himself (Glory unto Him in the Highest), unresolved. While He (in His Inexpressible Perfection) has communicated with her in this very forum, nonetheless He has, for reasons which surpasseth understanding, not heard back from her. Perhaps she believes she has once again been “punked.” To equate the jest of two Canadian wise-guys with the edict of the Almighty–O wicked daughter of Eve! But I exceed my authority here and will say no more on this matter.)

As noted above, the Lord (may His Name be Exalted and Blessed Forever and Ever) will make Himself available unto you as of or shortly after November 5, at which time He will be able to expand upon and render in greater detail His thoughts concerning the above-mentioned issues. There is no need to pray for an appointment. He will find you.

Finally, in closing, permit me to say that God (Who shall Reign Forever and Ever) and I managed to see your performance on Saturday Night Live this past weekend. You, if I may so express myself, “killed.”

Yours truly,

Uriel (Arch.)

Cc God
Jesus Christ


Free Levi Johnston

September 29, 2008

Get this:

Inside John McCain’s campaign the expectation is growing that there will be a popularity boosting pre-election wedding in Alaska between Bristol Palin, 17, and Levi Johnston, 18, her schoolmate and father of her baby. “It would be fantastic,” said a McCain insider. “You would have every TV camera there. The entire country would be watching. It would shut down the race for a week.”

NOW are we having fun yet? You bet. A shotgun wedding–it’s like a commercial for a breakfast cereal–with real shotguns! Only this time the biggest gun of all will be brandished, not, as is usually the case, by the outraged father of the bride as he drags her, in her knock-ed-up state of blushing pride and soul-baking embarrassment, down what passes for “the aisle,” no, this time it’ll be handled by the mother. Who is Governor of the sovereign state in which the nuptials are taking place in! And–no, seriously–is also the Republican candidate for Vice-President of the whole U.S. of god-damn A.

(While everyone thinks, “Wait–are we sure this is her first?” I know someone who squired Sarah Palin around for a day last March–one month before Trig’s delivery–who swears that woman was not pregnant. Well, “whatever.” Mary and Joseph had a controversial pregnancy, too, and look how that kid turned out.)

It’s not that “you can’t make this stuff up.” You can. But then your head would fall off. Now, however, you don’t have to run that risk. The Republican Party, with the straight face of the salesman lending you his pen to sign the purchase order for the world’s most horrible vacuum cleaner, has done it for you.

Mencken, thou shouldst be living at this hour. And you too, Twain. And, what the hell, all you guys and gals from ages past (Norman Mailer, Hunter Thompson, P.T. Barnum, Sinclair Lewis, Robert Altman, Sophie Tucker, Nathaniel West, Billy Wilder, John Dos Passos, etc.) who knew that America was (and still is, God damn it) that place of places where nothing is too brazen, nothing is too ludicrous or inane or mendacious or nakedly meretricious, that we can’t at least try it.

Deep-fried Twinkies? It’s what’s for dinner! Polygamous marriages to teenagers in “frontier” dresses? Where are they registered? Possible President who believes humans and dinosaurs existed–living, loving, making it work–at the same time, 4,000 years ago? Join me in welcoming her now. And if nobody told Sarah Palin that The Flintstones was fiction, whose fault is that? (Of course we can tell her now. But it’s too late. The damage is done. She’s a person of “faith” and her mind, to the extent that she has one, is made up.)

“America is a mistake,” Freud told Ernest Jones. “A gigantic mistake, it is true, but none the less a mistake.” But who cares? He was Freud! Didn’t he know that Freud is like totally over?

Besides, what’s wrong with bread and circuses? Everybody loves bread (except certain Jews during Passover–and–may we speak frankly?–if they don’t like it, they can go back to Russia). As for circuses, don’t be so literal. It’s politics; it’s “the culture wars;” it’s The Will to Power and the survival struggle of memes (you can’t spell “meme” without “Me! Me!”)…it’s what Preston Sturges (with uncharacteristic sentimentality) called “this cockeyed caravan,” yes, it’s Election Year Two Thousand And Fucking Eight: a Hieronymus Bosch triptych with computers.

Commenters on a blog I read talk about investing in popcorn futures–that’s how rollicking this whole election deal has become. John McCain, claiming to “suspend” a campaign which is in no way suspended, threatens to ignore one of only three national debates as he plops himself down at the table in the emergency conference meant to solve the most gigantic financial crisis of our lifetime, and then says nothing, gets up and leaves, attends the debate after all, and takes credit for the financial plan three days later. You say “that’s irresponsible”? I say, That’s Entertainment.

Meanwhile, what we are all laughingly calling “the Bush legacy” continues metastasizing. Two-front war on terrorism grinding into its sixth year? Check. Entire financial system on life-support because guys raking in 8-figure bonuses made a boo-boo? Check. Record deficits C.O.D. from the party of “prudence”? Gotcha. Stagnant-income-households paying for four-dollar gas? Done and done. Put-them-all-together, they spell: Let’s have a wedding!

Although first, let’s confirm paternity.

KATIE COURIC: Governor, if there were to be a public outcry for Bristol to take a DNA test, how would you respond?

SARAH PALIN: Like any good mahm, Katie. I would say, “Hey, Briss, let’s do this, and I’ll stay up all night helping you study if that’s what it takes.”

Which is to say, how do we know poor Levi Johnston (The Sexiest Chump Alive) is the real dad? Because the mother-to-be says so? Please. We may be idiots, but we weren’t born yesterday. Somebody do an amnio, or a papal nuncio, or a hi-def video, or whatever it is House’s team of ethnic geniuses and drop-dead gorgeous gals does, and let’s be certain. (Fun Fact: Olivia Wilde, who plays “13” or whatever her character’s name is on House, is the niece of ALEXANDER COCKBURN. Of Counterpunch! Could you die? I could. I did! I digress.) What if Levi isn’t The One?

Or, as someone wisely asked, “If McCain loses the election, can Levi get a divorce?”

(Memo to the lad: DON’T SIGN ANYTHING. Pre-nup schmee-nup. YOU’RE in the driver’s seat, d00d. Make ’em pay.)

But ain’t that America? Where the clever work for the unscrupulous to deceive the poor in the service of the rich.

And it’s not even October.

CORRECTION: An earlier draft of this said, wrongly, that Olivia Wilde is the daughter of Alexander Cockburn.  She is his niece.  Her father is Alexander Cockburn’s brother, Andrew.  I regret the error.

Every Day a Little Death: The Five Stages of Democratic Grief

September 21, 2008

1. Acceptance: Okay, fine. Whatever. They win. It’s inevitable, really. A complicated or qualified truth is never as arousing as a good hate-charged lie. It’s not that you can’t make people be intelligent; it’s that you can’t make people care about things they don’t care about. And half the country consists of people who don’t care about the truth.

Maybe it’s rooted in the universal denial of death: we all come equipped with a mechanism to ignore the unpleasantly true and embrace the preferable fantasy. In any case, half the country sees “hero” and “spunky mom” instead of “confused sellout desperately saying anything” and “lying, ambitious religious nut.” It doesn’t matter if it’s “fair.” It doesn’t matter if it’s “insane.” A machine dedicated to exploiting the worst in people will always triumph against a movement asking for the best in people. Meanwhile, since the wall you beat your head against is not going to go away, it’s up to you to stop, take your head with you, and walk away from the wall. I’m outa here.

2. Depression: Who am I kidding? This is a nightmare and the one thing you can’t do in a nightmare is “accept” it. What am I doing to do–leave the country? Ridiculous. Meanwhile, greed and vanity, using lies and fear, will once again manipulate ignorance and resentment. Biden’s decent-man’s sense of modesty and proportion is no match for the turbo-charged ego and effortless mendacity of Palin. The worst people in our public life will win again, and they’ll do it using a secret weapon that’s the most obvious weapon of all: their shamelessness. A hundred rabid sociopaths are salivating in anticipation of taking Rush Limbaugh’s place because that’s what America has become.

And so the “ordinary people” applaud for and collude in their own manipulation. And even if Obama ends up getting more votes, it’s futile to hope that he’ll really “win,” because the machines are rigged and the voter rolls are trashed. There’s nothing we can do about it and there’s no use in even trying. We want a society of justice, fairness, freedom, and common sense, and we’re doomed.

3. Bargaining: All right, look. Maybe it’s not all either/or. Say McCain wins. We’ve still got Congress. Yes, they’re spineless, ass-covering careerists who spend half their time selling their principles to raise money and the other half defending the system that requires them to do it–but even they have some pride. Maybe it won’t be so bad. McCain will surround himself with war mongers and thieves, but even Congress may have had enough of war and theft (and everyone will believe them if they say “we can’t afford it”). So the two branches battle each other to a standstill. Nothing good happens and nothing too terribly bad happens. Then he dies, Palin steps in, and in two months our national life is a cross between Seven Days in May and The Beverly Hillbillies. Couldn’t that be fun?

4. Anger: No. Bullshit. There can be no accommodating these complete and total imbeciles. That mob of credulous people, the teeming throng of decent, self-satisfied, naïve dodos who actually cheered that freak show in Minneapolis, the ones who chant “U.S.A.” as though rooting for a college football team, the “patriots” who think “patriotism” means voting for the guy who tells you that his opponent isn’t “patriotic,” the people who every day live in a fantasy world of made-up “heroes,” superstitious “faith,” self-contradicting “values,” invented “facts,” and proud, defiant obliviousness of history, human nature, science, and common sense: How stupid can people be?

“Well, I don’t really know Obama.” Guess what, Mrs. Sixpack? You don’t know your fucking spouse. You don’t know your fucking self. If you did–if, at the breakfast table, you had the tiniest capacity for honest introspection, and the basic grownup skepticism even you bring to the task of buying a used car–you’d see how you’ve been played. First by Bush and by Rove, and now by their successors. The contempt they have for you is obvious in everything they openly say to you. Giuliani, McCain, even the self-parodying Romney all deserve Emmys for staying in character and resisting the temptation to turn to each other, point to the crowd, and say, “Can you believe these suckers?”

Because that’s what you are: Dupes. Rubes. Marks. You deserve what you get. But we don’t. So, memo to Dems: Fuck it. It’s war. Call every lie a lie. Tell Palin it’s cute that she admits she has the brains of a pit bull but it’s not enough to qualify for the office. Shame McCain, over and over, for betraying literally everything he has ever stood for, and for inflicting that trailer-trash Rapture-ready mediocrity on the United States of America. Tell the morons that whoever tells you that someone else is an “elitist” is really telling you that you’re an idiot. Take off the gloves, then put them back on, then take them off in slow-motion and throw them in McCain’s face. Swift Boat his POW history. Criticize her adequacy as a mother. Ask him why sitting in a cell thirty years ago makes anyone qualified to lead the U.S. in the 21st century. Ask her if she believes in the Rapture and who she thinks will qualify. Ask her if she knows what the Fed does. Ask him if he knows what a server farm is. Are we men, or we moose? Do it.

5. Denial: Calm down. It can’t be as bad as I think. The world doesn’t really work that way. There are too many intelligent, fair-minded people to allow this grotesque possibility to come to pass. Bush in 2000, Bush in 2004: an affront, a crime, yes, but it’s understandable that it was close enough to steal. But this? This fumfering old moral has-been, who no longer knows what he believes, and his provincial beauty pageant runner-up who thinks gall is the same thing as intelligence? People can’t, when all is said and done, be that stupid. Some, yes. But not all, and not most. And the voting machine problem, the vote caging, all that? People are aware of it and dealing with it. It’ll be okay. I really believe that.

(Repeat from #1)

Hey Jews

September 16, 2008

(To the tune of you-know-what, with apologies to you-know-who.)

Hey Jews
Don’t make it worse
With the curse of
McCain and Palin
When fundamentalists pray
It’s for the day
You’re weepin’ and wailin’

Hey Jews
Don’t be a putz 1
He’s a yutz 2 and
She’s a chaleria 3
The minute
You looked inside of her kop 4
You would throw op
Go on, I dare ya…

So keep her out and send her home
Hey Jews, to Nome
Wherever she hunts
For moose to capture
For don’t (Juneau?) forget it’s true
Hey Jews
So nu? 5
It’s all killing time
Until the Rapture.

Na na na na na
Na na na

Hey, Jews
As for McCain
It may pain you
To see him squanda
His image, his reputation, and cred
Now he’s Undead
And it’s a shanda 6

But do not vote for John McCain
Hey Jews, refrain
From buying that “I know how to win wars.”
For take a look at history
Hey Jews
You’ll see
That all they know how is to begin wars.

Na na na na na
Na na na…

Hey Jews
Don’t make me bentsch 7
Be a mensch 8
And be patriotic
Please cast your vote for Barack
Don’t make me hak 9
Like some psychotic


Na na na
na na na na
Hey Jews…

1. A jerk
2. A jerk
3. An evil woman
4. Head
5. “What did you expect?” (Also, “What’s new?” “Anything happening?” etc.)
6. A ghastly shame, a criminal shame.
7. Pray
8. An admirable person, a real grown-up
9. Lit., “bang.” Fig., harangue, browbeat

United Mime Workers Silent on Presidential Endorsement

May 22, 2008

The union representing most of America’s “non-verbal, gestural, movement-centric” performers, the United Mime Workers, today continued its refusal to endorse formally any candidate for the presidency of the U.S. or, indeed, to answer any question put to it.

Responding to a reporter’s query at its weekly press conference, a “spokes”person for the group addressed the matter of the union’s preference for Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, or John McCain by convincingly portraying a man carrying a heavy trunk on his back across a beach.

When challenged by another reporter, that the proffered answer did not actually deal with the issue, the union representative impersonated what onlookers took to be a seven-year-old eating an ice cream cone in a hurricane.

Reaction from the various presidential candidates was swift in coming. Senator John McCain noted, “The nation’s mime workers are a vital part of our nation’s security system of the nation, and a bulwark team of defensive front-line against Al Qaeda along the border, and, um, an important part of a nutritious breakfast. I am pleased to have their support even if they support no one.”

Senator Hillary Clinton, continuing what many view as a futile campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, praised the mime workers “because they know what I have learned as I have listened to people all across this nation, which is that it’s not enough to make pretty speeches. Sometimes you have to stop talking and just act like a cat trying to walk up a sliding board. And that’s what I’ve been doing every single day.”

Front-running Democratic contender Barack Obama praised the mime workers’ “ability to do more than just talk, and to say so much by saying very little in the service of saying nothing at all.” Obama went on to declare that, in a McCain presidency, “life for mimes will be exactly as it has been under President Bush, except with more expensive leotards.”

Post Hoc Ergo Shut Up Hoc

April 23, 2008

As we say in our latest book, How to Raise a Jewish Dog, “the argument that ‘only Hillary can win the big states necessary to elect a Democrat’ is entirely fallacious and absurd, and should be immediately shot in the head and then ushered off to an honorable retirement.”

(Disclosure: We don’t really say this in our latest book, How to Raise a Jewish Dog. This is my idea of product placement. But why not? We say other things, as funny if not funnier. Everyone who reads it loves it. Check it out! But first read the following.)

This, both in self-perpetuating, tedious discussions among tv commentators, and from the Hillary camp, is their argument: Hillary won Michigan, Ohio, and now Pennsylvania. These states are essential for Democrats to win if they hope to beat McCain. Obama “can’t close the deal,” Hillary says, meaning, he can’t defeat her decisively in those states. And, since those states are essential to a Dem victory, “only” she can beat McCain. Thus, Democratic delegates–whose main priority should be winning, regardless of specific policy details–should see the light, flock to her, and elect her the Democratic candidate for prez.

But this argument is not so much “flawed” as it is “stoopid.”

True, Obama “lost” Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania–against another Democrat. Obama lost in a race in which his universe of possible votes was, by definition, cut more or less in half. He wasn’t running against McCain in Pennsylvania; he was running against Clinton. But Clinton, and the braying jackasses of the media (they know who they are–no, wait. They don’t know who they are. We know who they are.) insist that this bag of apples is also, or is “really,” a bag of oranges.

Saying that Obama can’t win Pennsylvania in November because he lost to Hillary is like watching an intra-squad practice game among, say, the San Antonio Spurs, and concluding–after one team “loses”–that the Spurs can’t possibly hope to compete in the playoffs. “A team consisting of Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili, and Brett Barry lost. How can they hope to prevail against Phoenix or Boston?”

So asketh the stupid son. To him you shall say, “Jesus Christ, are you a complete idiot? Or a tv pundit trying to invent something to talk about? That’s only half the team. It lost to the other half. Both halves of the team will play together against someone completely else when they go into the playoffs.”

Naturally, at this juncture, someone will point out that X percent of Obama voters and Y percent of Clinton voters have told pollsters that they will refuse to vote for the other side’s candidate if she/he gets the nod, and will instead vote for McCain. Fine. Whatever. Let’s say they really mean it–today.

Does anyone really think they’ll all feel the same way after three months of hand-to-hand, hand-to-mouth, and foot-in-mouth combat in “the general”? When McCain, with all his history and tax cut switcheroos and lobbyist-infested staff and iffy wife and photo-of-him-hugging-Bush-with- his-eyes-lightly-closed and Iraq-for-a-hundred-years mischegoss and Sunni-Shia confusion, has finally been challenged and shamed by the Democrats, who have thus far been busy eviscerating each other? And when a single gaffe, scandal, “misspeaking,” or revelation can torpedo a campaign overnight?

Sure, some Dems who want Hillary to win will vote for McCain rather than Obama. But how many? No one knows, because no one can know. Is that any basis upon which to demand delegate fealty–and in defiance of the popular vote? Obviously not, obviously.

Democrats of every stripe should, effective immediately, give this argument the back of their hand. And the more it is advanced, the more askance its advancer should be looked at. Harsh words, yes, but in this case not uncalled for. And every time Hillary asserts it–every time she says that beating Obama in Pennsylvania proves that only she can beat McCain in Pennsylvania–she should be identified either as a disingenuous, calculating sneak, or as someone who doesn’t quite understand how primaries are different from general elections.

Which do you think she is?