Sunday, March 30, 2008

Mykel's Column for MRR 300 May 2008

YOU'RE WRONG
An Irregular Column

by Mykel Board

I am profoundly troubled that any candidate would chart the course of American history as follows (and I'm rearranging Obama's history here to make it more chronological):
American Revolutionaries -> Manifest Destiny -> Slaves/Abolitionists -> Suffragettes -> the Labor Movement -> the Greatest Generation -> the Civil Rights Movement -> Himself. --
Mother Jones Magazine

Rather than focusing on any specific issue or cause — other than an amorphous desire for change — the message is becoming dangerously self-referential. The Obama campaign all too often is about how wonderful the Obama campaign is... --TalkLeft Internet Site


ALTERNATE UNIVERSE ONE: It's November 4, 2008. There's an early arctic chill in the air. I walk the 100 yards down Bleecker Street from my apartment to the voting booths. Faced with the depressing task of staring at the names HILLARY CLINTON and JOHN MCCAIN, I'm gonna pull the lever for Ralph Nader or some other sure-to-lose candidate.

I enter the curtained booth. Something presses against the back of my head.

“Don't turn around,” says a voice. “I've got a gun. If you don't vote for Clinton or McCain, I will kill you.”

Reluctantly, I pull the lever next to: McCain.

ALTERNATE UNIVERSE TWO: It's November 4, 2008. There's an early arctic chill in the air. I walk the 100 yards down Bleecker Street from my apartment to the voting booths. Faced with the depressing task of staring at the names HILLARY CLINTON and MIKE HUCKABEE, I'm gonna pull the lever for Ralph Nader or some other sure-to-lose candidate.

I enter the curtained booth. Something presses against the back of my head.

“Don't turn around,” says a voice. “I've got a gun. If you don't vote for Clinton or Huckabee, I will kill you.”

“Pull the trigger,” I say.

******

Yes, it's MRR #300. The May issue. I write this, however, in February. The theme is supposed to be The California Scene, the Bay Area and politics-- just like the first MRR.

I don't give a shit about the California scene. I don't know anything about Bay Area music. I haven't cared since Op Ivy broke up. But politics? Oh yeah, now is the time to write about politcs.

For the last 25 years of Grandma MRR, every 4 years I wrote my VOTE-THIRD-PARTY or DON'T-VOTE-IT-ONLY-ENCOURAGES-THEM column. But this year, I've got a surprise.

(“You're so predictable Mykel,” she says.

“I hate being predictable,” I tell her. “That's the worst insult you can give me.”

“I knew you'd say that,” she answers.)

February 2008, America has a chance. The sliver of a chance. An infinitesimal chance. A corn-kernel-in-a-beershit chance. A semen-stain-on-an-evening-gown chance. The United States might become the first Western nation with a Negro leader.

Korea, Vietnam, Dominican Republic, Granada, Desert Storm I, Afghanistan, Desert Storm II. 50 years of being the planet's badguy. 200 years of white guy presidents-- all but one Protestant. America NOW has a chance to lead the world in something different.

For once we can be the good guy again. The world hates America. I can't travel without being gringo-ized by a humanity that America fucked up. The election of a Negro could change all that.

How bad could America be if a majority white nation votes for a Negro? How could that country of arrogant racists be so arrogantly racist if it elects a colored guy as president?

Barak Obama could be the first Democrat I'll vote for since George McGovern (who?). I don't give a shit about Obama's politics. I don't give a shit about his flip flopping. I don't give a shit about his church appearances. He is a Negro. He was against the war in Iraq from the start. That's enough for me.

I don't care that Obama's campaign is about Obama. That his platform is Obama. That his promises are Obama and more Obama. Presidents don't do anything except stand up and make speeches. Their advisors rule. Presidents exist for the TV cameras. Things in America are not going to get better with Obama, but they'll LOOK better with Obama.

I can't imagine this really happening. Americans are too goonish, too war-loving, too nasty to allow it. But in February 2008, there is a sliver of hope.

Eager to help make that sliver into an entire... er... board, I call M, a pal of mine with a button-making machine. I find a picture of the Illinois senator. A nice one. In front of the Capitol. Smiling. Arms folded. No American flags. No religious symbols. I scan it into Photoshop.

I lay out the words in a circle around the picture. VOTE OBAMA-- AMERICA NEEDS A NEGRO. Proudly, I walk outside and go up Broadway to the closest Obama campaign office.

I pass my local street bum, a scruffy white guy who still has some of his teeth. He's been on my corner for almost 10 years. We're friends.

I dig in my pocket for a quarter. Throwing the coin into his oversize cup—really more like a pail—I tell him my plan to work for the Illinois senator.

“Good luck,” he says, “but it ain't gonna make much difference to me. No matter who's president, I'll be right here on the corner with my little bucket. You'll see.”

A bit further up the street, an attractive colored girl walks toward me. I thrust out my chest to make sure she can see who I'm supporting. It's working. She gives me a big smile. Then she freezes. Her smile turns into a frown, then a sneer. She huffs past me. I don't get it.

Shrugging, I continue my walk the half dozen blocks to the downtown Obama campaign headquarters. It's about 4 blocks east of NYU. In a storefront. If I remember correctly, it used to be a Radio Shack.

There's a huge picture of the colored man in the window. Not a full-body shot. Just his face. His hands together, prayer style. But they're not in praying position. Instead, they're at an angle supporting his head. Like Shirley Temple on The Good Ship Lollipop. (Who? On what?)

Inside the office, there are Obama bumper stickers, Obama badges, Obama campaign literature. Most of it has no words on the front except OBAMA. A few brochures have a white-on-blue logo that says CHANGE WE CAN BELIEVE IN.

In front of one table, a vaguely punk-looking young man (black leather jacket, tight black jeans, hair in a collegiate fauxhawk) pokes at the literature. He speaks with the black woman behind the table.

“And what about vegetarianism?” he asks. “What's Obama's stand on that issue?”

“Issue shmissue,” says the woman. “We don't do issues. We are issues.”

An expensive haircut, smelling of Eau d'NYU Freshman, comes up to me.

“Hi,” he says, eagerly extending his hand. “Can I help you?”

“You bet,” I tell him. “I wanna work for Obama.”

I see him look down at my home-made button.

“I can get more,” I tell him. “I made it myself. You can have the rights. No royalties. I don't believe in royalties.”

“You can't wear that,” he says. “That's racist.”

“You bet,” I answer. “But it's racist in the best way. It's PRO-colored people. It's a short form of from slavery to president! I know Obama doesn't have slaves in the woodpile, but it's the image that counts. Don't you think?”

“Look,” he says. “I don't know what you're trying to do, but would you please do it elsewhere? We have a campaign to run.”

“And I want to help,” I say, beginning to lose my enthusiasm in the cold reception. Like an erection that droops at the sight of an anal wart.

As we speak, a tall dark guy with dreadlocks comes in the door. Despite the dreadlocks, he wears a business suit, white shirt, and dark blue tie. His lapel sports a large button with a picture of Obama. Just the senator's face-- and one hand in a thumbs up gesture.

“Is there a problem here?” he asks in a deep resonant voice, sounding more British than Jamaican.

The whiteguy nods at my button. The tall guy looks at it and frowns like that girl on Broadway did.

“I think you'd better leave,” he says.

I take a few campaign leaflets and go out.

Looks like organized politics, like organized religion, does not get along with me. I'm gonna have to do this myself. My way. Bring on the scanner and color printer!

Obama needs publicity. People everywhere need to be reminded. I scan the cover of one of Obama's campaign brochures. Click. Cut. Paste. I'll photoshop a new set of stickers that'll wake New York up to my new hero.

I cut the stickers into large squares and go back out to the street. I see my bum friend again.

“Hey,” I ask him. “Can I put one of these on your coin bucket?”

He looks at the white-on-blue sticker.

“Sure,” he says, “but I don't get it.”

I read the sticker I've slightly doctored.

OBAMA, SPARE CHANGE WE CAN BELIEVE IN.

I'm gonna distribute them to beggars all over the city. That should wake people up. Every sympathetic bum donor will get it. They'll all become aware of the historical poverty of American slaves. They'll realize the way the world sees us. And they'll understand the chance for a symbol to reverse that image.

It's not far to the next bum. He sits on a milk crate at the corner of Mercer and Houston. Instead of a bucket, he shakes a more standard cardboard coffee cup. This guy is black. The sticker should have even more impact here.

“Hey,” I ask. “Can I put one of these on your coin cup?”

I show him the sticker.

“Er...” he starts. “Would you mind telling me what it says? I left my reading glasses at home.”

Wiseguy.

I read the sticker to him.

“Sorry,” he says. “I don't get this political stuff. Anyone gets elected, I'm on the same street corner... 'cept of course, Giuliani. With him, I'm in jail.”

This guy is only the first in a string of refusals. For some reason, the average homeless guy has no faith in the government or the electoral system. He doesn't want to spend even an inch of begging cup to support a candidate.

One guy I try to talk to could be Hispanic, or just a white guy who needs a bath. From his speech I figure he's black. In any case, he's savvy enough to have an actual marketing reason for rejecting my request.

“See,” he says, “most folks that give me money are brothers, white ladies or old people. Now, the brothers are gonna give me money anyway. Obama, Osama or whatever. The white ladies all like that white lady...”

“Hillary Clinton,” I say.

He nods.

“And old people,” he continues, “like that old guy.”

“John McCain,” I say.

He shrugs.

“So your sticker ain't gonna do me no good... got a quarter?”

I give the guy a quarter for his astute political analysis and, discouraged, I head home.

So what's left? My campaign work was a failure. My bum crusade never got more than one bum. All I have left is this column. So here it is:

If Obama doesn't get the nomination, you should vote 3rd party or not at all. America does not need 20 years of 2 families. Didn't we fight King George to get rid of dynasties?

McCain is a worse horror. Sure as shit, he won't allow 4 years to go by without his own war.

If Obama gets the nomination, you should vote for him. I will. He really is the chance for Americans to feel better about themselves and the world. There's not much more we can hope for.

ENDNOTES: [email subscribers (god@mykelboard.com) or website viewers (www.mykelboard.com) will get live links and a chance to email comment on the column]

-->Yeah it was April Fools dept: I guess most of you figured out that my column about A YEAR WITHOUT KIDS was a fake. There is no such group.
The man who started the movement was also a complete invention-- sprung from my brow like Aphrodite from the brow of Uranus.
The concept's not bad though. Anyone interested can have full rights to the name.

-->Get me one dept: Daryl Hill of Cookeville Tennessee bought his 10 year old daughter an MP3 player from Wal-Mart.
Surprise! The player was "preloaded with pornography and explicit songs." Evidently, someone bought the thing, downloaded the good stuff, then sealed it up and returned it. Now that's my kind of sabotage!

-->Embarrassing being a Jew dept. part 1: City University of New York and The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, among others, canceled presentations about a book called THE ISRAEL LOBBY. They said they needed critics to balance out the presentation. All critics, however, were "unavailable or unwilling to participate.” This call for "balance" is the new censorship.
Where is the balance for Rush Limbaugh or Anne Coulter? Where is the balance for an entire night of Fox News? Certainly not on CNN!

-->Embarrassing being a Jew dept. part 2: The school administration in Old Saybrook Connecticut canceled a performance by the Al-Ghad Folklore Dancing Troupe of Palestine. Why? Because parents claimed it was "offensive to Israeli and Jewish sensibilities." Maybe they couldn't find a Kill-the-Palestinians-Now Dance group to balance it out.

-->Speaking of predictable dept: A new book called, Predictably Irrational, talks about variations in the famous PLACEBO effect. Not only do people get better when doctors prescribe a sugar pill placebo... but the effect is increased if patients pay a lot for it. In other words, a worthless drug gives more relief when priced at $2.50, than when priced at 10 cents.
And what have the drug companies done for you lately? You sure?

-->Saving by intimidation dept: No, I'm not talking about Christianity. I'm talking about a BOMB BANK made by the Japanese toy company, Tomy.
The bomb-shaped bank begins to shudder and beep if not fed regularly. Longer starvation makes it explode and send coins and bank-shards flying. Sounds more American than Japanese, doesn't it?

-->If thy left hand offend thee dept: Kyle N sent me a clipping about an Idaho man who believed he saw THE MARK OF THE BEAST on his hand. Using a circular saw, he cut off the hand and microwaved it. A hospital spokewoman declined to say if any effort was made to reattach the offending hand.

-->What exactly does OVERWEIGHT mean? dept: The November 7, 2007 Journal of the American Medical Association reported, "Overweight people have lower mortality rates than those in all other weight categories (underweight, normal, and obese) and are less likely to die from certain illnesses, including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and respiratory disease."
That begs the question... who decides what is and isn't overweight? Over WHAT weight?

-->Glad I'm not a Christian dept: Southern Baptist Pastor Wiley Drake has again urged his followers to pray for the deaths of staff members at Americans United for Separation of Church and State.
Last August, Americans United filed an IRS complaint about Drake’s use of church letterhead and a church-based radio program to endorse Mike Huckabee. Federal tax law forbids tax-exempt groups from endorsing or opposing candidates for public office. The IRS later notified Drake that his church was being investigated.
In response, Drake sent e-mails to followers urging them to engage in “imprecatory prayers” (curses) against Americans United and three of its staff members.
Wrote Drake, “In light of the recent attack from the enemies of God, I ask the children of God to go into action with Imprecatory Prayer. Especially against Americans United for Separation of Church and State…. Specifically target Joe Conn or Jeremy Learing [sic] and their leader, Rev. Barry Lynn. They are those who lead the attack.”
Drake directed his followers to Psalms 109 (as well as Psalms 55, 58, 68, 69 and 83) for examples of imprecatory prayers. Verses from those texts ask God to bring death and destruction to those targeted.
“Let his days be few; and let another take his office,” says one passage.
“Let his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow. Let his children be continually vagabonds, and beg,” says another.


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Saturday, March 08, 2008

Mykel's Column for MRR #299 APRIL 2008

You're Wrong

An Irregular Column

by Mykel Board

MYKEL'S COLUMN FOR MRR
NUMBER 299 APRIL 2008


Jeezus Fuckin' Christ. My head feels like it's in one of those machines that squeeze trucks into two-foot metal cubes. My tongue is sandpaper. Last night's fried calamari squirmed through my intestines. It reassembled itself. Now it swims with a vengeance toward the anal porthole. I can't stand up. Maybe if I roll gently out of bed, I can crawl to the bathroom. Ah, that's better. Now all I need is sleep. Then, the baby cries. Please! Let me sleep! I just need some sleep!

BACK TO SOBRIETY:

This column will be published in MRR's April issue, but I'm writing it in January. It's a warm January. Too warm to keep that phalanx of mothers and nannies pushing, dragging, carrying, their little charges around New York on a never-ending quest to annoy just about everyone.

The brats have taken over. Strollers drag-race down Bleecker Street demanding priority passage in the name of procreation. Chocolate-covered toddlers leave handprints on anything I might be inclined to pick up. Isn't there anyone who wants to DO something about the mess? Well, yes. In fact, there is.

Dr. Tyaniche Nogy is as weird as his name. He's a little guy, about 70, with wild gray hair and a pointed white goatee. His glasses, dorky looking suit, and general demeanor make him look like Bill Gates in Trotsky drag.

Despite our ideological agreement, I don't really like the guy. He's personally insulting. He laughs at other people's expense. He coughs like he'll keel over any minute. His only good point is, he's right. And he has a brilliant idea.

For the rest of this column, I'll let him use his own words to describe what he's doing. Here's my interview with him. My questions are in boldface.

Well, Ty, I want to thank you for agreeing to this interview. I'm fascinated by your idea. Could you explain it for our readers?

First, I am NOT Ty. My name is Tyaniche. It's Russian. It means one destined for greatness. Second, I forgot. What do you want me to do?

I'd like you to explain your organization and your larger plan.

Oh yes. “A Year Without Kids” is an umbrella group for those who support our plan to mark 2011 as the year when no one will have children. The plan is...

Before we get to the plan, could you explain the reasoning behind it?

[Coughs fiercely.] Too bad your toupee didn't come with brains in it.


It's not a toupee. It's a transplant.

Listen you little schmuck, I don't care if it's grass seed. If you didn't understand the reasoning, you wouldn't be here. What're you asking me this stuff for?

I know what you think. I just want to make it clear for the readers. Why do you propose a year without kids... or at least a year without births?

[He sighs, and smoothes an errant gray hair poking out of his right eyebrow] OK, let's go through the eight basic reasons.

Number 1: Populations on the earth are increasing much faster than the resources to feed and house them. This creates poverty and war. Without children, there are more resources to go around.

Number 2: Most of the soldiers in the world are youngsters, sometimes children. Without children-- and the young adults they become-- wars will disappear because there will be no one to fight them.

Number 3: Throughout the world, governments use children as excuses for every kind of repression, for every law that creates crimes with no victims. In America, you have to show your ID to get into a bar. Why? So children don't drink. TV shows are censored. Even a single breast is banned. Why? Because children might see it. Without children, the world would be a freer place. It would...


What about the evils of kids in airplanes... and restaurants?



Would you let me finish? What is it with you? Who's the one being interviewed here? I couldn't get a word in if I folded it in half! As I was saying...

Number 4: Children are annoying. They scream in airplanes and restaurants. They make messes that other people have to clean up. They claim special privileges like first seating or an extra high chair. They use resources and perpetuate age-ism.

Number 5: Children spread diseases. They drool all over the place. Maladies like mumps or measles are short-lived and harmless in children, but if spread to a real person, they can be fatal.

Number 6: Children are a social burden. Millions of dollars are spent on them. They use healthcare systems disproportionately. They eat many times their own weight. Just being SUVed back and forth to the pediatrician uses more gas than a Mac Truck circling the globe. Worse than that, our so-called education system educates no one. It exists to turn kids into adults-- which are exactly what they would become if we left them alone! How much money is wasted on elementary schools, jungle gyms, sandboxes? They should fill 'em with quicksand. [He laughs. That quickly turns into a cough.]

Number 7: Children are a barrier to human contact and compassion. Everybody knows the girl who has a cocker spaniel or adopted alley cat. “My baby,” she calls it. “My sweetie.” Oh yeah. But just wait until she drops her own puppies. POW! The poor pet is kicked out of the way to make crawlspace for the little gurgling mass of pink (or yellow or brown) flesh.
              Same for friends. “Best friend for ever and ever.” Yeah right. As soon as the whelp sticks its bald head into the world. Shazam! Friends? What friends?

Number 8: Children destroy the future. As long as there are children, there can be no real progress. Parents work, create, make money, live their lives for their kids rather than for themselves or the future of humanity. When the kids grow up, they live for their kids. It's a big circle. Nothing moves forward. You always go back to square one. To the kid. And the kid's kid.


So why not stop ALL childbirths instead of limiting yourself to one year?

You live in Moronsville or what? Can build a house just by nailing together a bunch of two by fours? No! You have to lay a foundation first. That's what we're doing here.

The Year Without Children is a demo. A show version. Once people see how much things improve... how easy their lives become... they will demand more. We can't do everything at once. We have to have realistic immediate goals, then greater long-term ideals.

A year without children is a realistic goal. A world without children is only a dream. But it is a dream that can become a reality if we lay the proper foundation.


Do you really think it's possible to get countries to agree to stop new births within their borders... even for a year?

Why not? For years, China had a successful one-child program. It's not so far to go from a one-child program to a no-child program. Even George W had something called No Child Left Behind. How far is it from that to simply No Child?


Is this idea gonna cut down on sex?

You're worried? You go to urologist for psychoanalysis?


Huh?

Your brains are in your dick! Anyway, the answer is no. People will have MORE sex. They'll know they won't have to worry about being saddled with little rug rats as a consequence of their pleasure.


So you'd encourage homosexuality?

Homosexuality is not enough. We encourage anal sex. Oral sex. Anything that doesn't breed.

You may not be aware of it, but heterosexuals also engage in anal sex. (Wiseguy!) We don't want to discourage any kind of sex. In fact, the ability to have sex without the fear of having children will be liberating. Just like the pill in the 60s. People will be screwing without fear.


What about disease?

Children ARE a disease. But you're right. There are other diseases. However, the money freed up by not having to care for little brats can go into finding cures for those. Without constantly being bombarded with childhood asthma or juvenile diabetes or BIRTH DEFECTS... The way to eliminate birth defects is to eliminate births!


So you'd encourage abortion.

Encourage it? We'd mandate it! You pop a puppy and blam! Into the vegomatic. There are a lot of hungry people in the world, we could...


You'd feed them fetuses?

Did you go to retard school or what? We can't feed people fetuses, that'd be cannibalism. But, we can mulch fetuses and use them as fertilizer. It's the basic way of nature. Animals die. They rot. Turn into topsoil. Plants grow from the topsoil. Animals eat the plants and the whole thing starts again. We just speed up the process. As fetuses are 100% organic, they would prove a boon to organic farming and the health-conscious people who consume those products.


OK, Any final words? How can people attracted to your idea contact you? How can we help?

First, smarten up. Stop being such a shmuck. Next, write your congressman, mayor, the president, the U.N. Tell 'em you support A Year Without Kids. Tell 'em why. We're just starting with the website, so there's not much there right now. I do everything myself. If you've got website skills-- or skills in anything but spurting offspring, I could use your help. Email me at: TNogy@yearwithoutkids.org

Anything else?

Yes! Stop making babies. Stop supporting people who make babies. Stop coochie-cooing, awing, and chin-chucking babies. Spit when you pass a stroller. Click your tongue. Sit in a bus seat before a poppin' momma can get to it. Let doors close in the face of expectant mothers. Throw back It's a Boy cigars saying “Give it to the kid. Maybe it'll get cancer.” Do anything in your power to discourage the scourge of childbirth.

--End of Interview--

********

Well, buckaroos. That's it for this month. I want to thank Dr. Nogy (even if he is kind of a jerk), and A Year Without Kids. It's a brilliant idea whose time has come.

ENDNOTES: [email subscribers (god@mykelboard.com) or website viewers (www.mykelboard.com) will get live links and a chance to email comment on the column]

FIRST, THREE ENDNOTES ABOUT KIDS:

-->Sports Abortion Dept: In Florida, a 15-year old boy threw a football against a pregnant woman. She miscarried and the baby died. Florida law says "anyone who causes an unborn baby's death as a result of an attack on the baby's mother commits a homicide." In Florida, abortion is legal. So if someone attacks mom, and the baby unintentionally dies, it's homicide. If mom decides that the baby should INTENTINALLY die, that's fine.
To which I say, “huh?”

-->The Right Gift for Tots dept: Annoyed by the kid? Kyle sent me info about an organization called THE ECOLOGY CENTER. They tested 1200 children's toys for toxic chemicals. Here's the scoop.
If you want to give something with lead choose:
  Dinner Party Tea Set, Elmo's Take-Along Card Games, Fairies backpack (yeah!) or my favorite Brush Your Teeth Robot, with the most lead of any item.
          You can find lead AND arsenic in: Bug's Backpack! That should do the trick.
         In any case, our TRUE PROTECTORS OF THE EARTH BY KILLING CHILDREN AWARD goes to the Tyrrell Katz company, maker of 1/3 of the top 15 poisonous toys.

-->Starting Young dept: Police in New Jersey said it was a typical holiday Grinch tale: A home was broken into on Christmas Eve. Wrapped presents were stolen off a kitchen table.
Little did they know the culprits were kids.
          Authorities in South Brunswick say a nine-year-old girl and a five-year-old boy used a gift card to pick the lock on the back door of a home a block away. They made off with about $200 in wrapped presents.

-->It's Only Natural dept: In Greeley Co, police arrested a Catholic priest. They charged him with indecent exposure. The cops accused him of "jogging naked in the pre-dawn darkness." The church excused the priest saying the incident "did not involve physical or sexual contact with another individual."

-->Monk Rock dept: Kyle also sent me this: It seems as if Buddhism is hitting the skids in Japan. So, in an effort to attract younger people, Japanese monks and nuns from eight major Buddhist sects, paraded high-fashion robes and chanted Buddhist prayer to a hip-hop beat. What would Jack Kerouac think?

-->You Call That a Reward? dept: In Rancho Cordova California, cops decided to try pulling GOOD DRIVERS over and rewarding them with $5 Starbucks gift cards. Besides considering if a gift card from Starbucks is a reward, you've got to wonder how many drugs are gonna get tossed when those flashing lights appear in the mirror.

-->Who was Right? dept: Art Conrad nailed a 15-foot crucifix in front of his Washington house. To the crucifix, he nailed a Santa. It was his protest against the commercialization of Xmas. Neighbors complained.
           Funny thing is: when Japan learned about Xmas right after World War II. One of the department stores had the same display: a crucified Santa. They thought it represented the real spirit of Xmas. People said the Japanese didn't get it. I think the Japanese were righter than they knew.

-->Is That a Pigbrain in Your Pocket or... dept: In Austin Minnesota, 11 workers at the "head table" began suffering from "numbness and immune disorders." These workers use compressed air to remove pigbrains from skulls.
Microbiologists think that the brains could be blasted into the air. The workers then inhaled whatever disease the pigs have. No word on humans who eat those brains... or even where they go once blasted. Spam anyone?

-->This from Jeff: Ms. Magazine has long been a screeching voice of anti-pornography and female supremacy. Apparently, that is not the case if the females are Israeli.
Jeff sent me a report that the magazine turned down an American Jewish Congress advertisement that did nothing more controversial than show that women occupy three powerful positions in Israel. The proposed ad included text that said only, “This is Israel,” under photographs of President of the Supreme Court, Dorit Beinish, Vice Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Tzipi Livni and Knesset Speaker, Dalia Itzik.
          “What other conclusion can we reach,” asked Richard Gordon, President of AJC, “except that the publishers are so hostile to Israel that they do not even want to see an ad that says something positive about Israel?”
         When the Director of AJC's Commission for Women’s Empowerment tried to place the ad, Ms Mag said that publishing the ad “will set off a firestorm.”
          A Ms. Magazine representative, Susie Gilligan, told the AJC rep that the magazine “would love to have an ad from you on women’s empowerment, or reproductive freedom, but not on this.” Ms. Gilligan did not say what “this” is.

--> Here's a Tough One for Us Free-speechers dept: That disgusting Christian group God Hates Fags, picketed the funeral of a U.S. Marine. The marine was not a homo, but the group now says that soldiers killed in combat are God's punishment for the US allowing homos to exist freely.
The father of one of the Marines sued the group and won 11 million dollars. Dad says it's not the money (yeah, right), but just the desire to close the church down. David Hudson, a lawyer for the "First Amendment Center" says: "You have a very unpopular group engaging in very unpopular speech. When you have that combination, that can lead to bad law."
I say "You tell 'em Dave!"
          I also say that GOD HATES FAGS oughta join NAMBLA and take the case all the way to the Supreme Court. I'll donate to both groups!

--> Power to What People? Dept: So there's this liberal radio program called DEMOCRACY NOW (www.democracynow.org) that's supposed to be the voice of populist liberals. They speak for the poor who can't speak for themselves, they say.
           Speaking of the poor, they sent me an invitation to their “star-studded performance.” It features, among others: Phil Donahue, Bill Moyers, Susan Sarandon and Marlo Thomas. Ticket cost? $1000. Of course, if you want the dinner along with the performance it's a little more: $2500.

-End-

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