Friday, July 31, 2009

A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Beers

I have nothing at all to say about the "beer summit" that this picture doesn't capture perfectly. If you had to choose one image to display how foul, trivial, and embarrassing our national media is, I'm not sure you could find a better one than this.

Juxtaposition, you're a doll. Give me a call when they make Cheney drink a shot of monkey stool for every death in Iraq. Until then, ugh. (via Wonkette)

Thursday, July 30, 2009

With Democrats Like These...

This morning, I received an e-mail from FireDogLake, asking people to call progressive members of congress and ask them to support a plan with a strong single payer option. That website, with instruction on who to call, can be found here.

The e-mail from FDL reads in part as follows:

"Dear Friend,
It's working. Your phone calls are making the difference.

The progressive caucus is finally realizing it can stand up for a real public option. Yesterday progressive members actually blocked the Blue Dogs from watering down health care reform - for the time being."

Their article about the "liberal insurrection" in the House can be found here. FDL is "cautiously optimistic" about these new events, though ComedyandPolitics is not optimistic in the slightest, for several reasons. Here is one of them, from the New York Times this morning:

"Efforts to pass sweeping health care legislation took a big step forward on Wednesday as House Democratic leaders reached an agreement with fiscally conservative party members that would cut the bill’s cost and exempt many small businesses from having to provide health benefits to workers.


Representative Mike Ross of Arkansas, the chief negotiator for the fiscally conservative Democrats known as Blue Dogs, said the changes were “a huge win for us.”"[emphasis mine.]

That juxtaposition should more than speak for itself.

Here's the thing. Anybody who has any faith at all in the Democratic Party to lead the way to a more progressive and just society is delusional. I could link to hundreds of articles that make this point, but Matt Taibbi's blog post from two days ago hits all the right notes. He writes:

Make no mistake, this [watering down of the health care bill] has nothing to do with Max Baucus, Bill Nelson, or anyone else. If the Obama administration wanted to pass a real health care bill, they would do what George Bush and Tom DeLay did in the first six-odd years of this decade whenever they wanted to pass some nightmare piece of legislation (ie the Prescription Drug Bill or CAFTA): they would take the recalcitrant legislators blocking their path into a back room at the Capitol, and beat them with rubber hoses until they changed their minds.

The reason a real health-care bill is not going to get passed is simple: because nobody in Washington really wants it. There is insufficient political will to get it done. It doesn’t matter that it’s an urgent national calamity, that it is plainly obvious to anyone with an IQ over 8 that our system could not possibly be worse and needs to be fixed very soon, and that, moreover, the only people opposing a real reform bill are a pitifully small number of executives in the insurance industry who stand to lose the chance for a fifth summer house if this thing passes.

It won’t get done, because that’s not the way our government works. Our government doesn’t exist to protect voters from interests, it exists to protect interests from voters.

That last sentence describes our country and government as accurately as anything I've ever read. And if any Obama apologists are getting upset with me right now, read the following passage from The Hill:
"Within hours of the liberal complaints, Obama was on the phone with Rep. Jan Schakowsky, a fellow Illinois Democrat and Energy and Commerce member who is in charge of the healthcare issue for the Progressive Caucus.

He told her the bill should go forward, Schakowsky said."

We now have a country coming out of the most disgraceful period since the administration of Andrew Jackson, a Democratic president with overwhelming political capital, a Democratic majority in the House, a Democratic and filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, and a issue (health care) that will cripple this country if it is not dealt with in a progressive way. And what is happening? The exact same thing that always happens. Democrats make noise about universal health care, and a robust public option, and then when a bill gets put on the floor the lobbyists and special interests are the only groups that really win.

If anybody, ANYBODY, thinks that supporting the Democratic party as an idea after this disgraceful episode will help the poor, the uninsured, and the most at-risk patients, then nothing at all will dissuade them from that delusional position. What possibly could?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

On Returning To The City

Vacation time is now over and normal life resumes. My alarm clock this morning was particularly loud, giving further evidence to my belief that that foul machine has it out for me personally. Like Boroughs' typewriter in Naked Lunch, I imagine my alarm clock transforms into a ruthless bug at night, waiting in the wings to torture me from 7:50am to 8:14am, depending on my snooze cycle.

The trip was amazing though. Seattle lived up to, and in some ways exceeded, an already high standard it had set for itself several years earlier. Chop Suey on Wednesday night in Seattle is my new favorite night in comedy. San Francisco was great as well. The Punchline is a fantastic club (thanks again to Ali Wong for the spot) that I'll hopefully get another chance to work sooner rather than later.

And in a perfect example of form fitting content, my trip of comedy shows ended with a marriage, which was both funny and touching, and gave me a chance to see some fantastic people I hadn't been in touch with in far too long.

Big thanks to everybody who put me up for a night, or several, and here's hoping that we all see each other again real soon and dance.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Latest Onion Headline

I'm in Seattle right now, so blogging will be light to non-existent in all likelihood for the next 2 weeks. But! The Onion just used another of my headlines! Woo! Here's the link.

Here's the headline:

Man At Bar Clinging To Muted 'King Of Queens' Episode Like Life Preserver

The next time you find yourself in that situation, know that I (and all of the rest of us) have been there too.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Brawl On Wall Street

This amazing video of two guys fighting goes on for a long time, but it's pretty funny. The doorman is completely non-plussed by the low-level action happening in front of him, as are the two people who WALK AROUND A BRAWL to get through the lobby. (via The Awl)

Friday, July 10, 2009

Prez Likes What He Sees

This is the greatest picture ever taken.

Here's a video that makes Obama look pretty innocent, but Sarkozy's stare could melt lead.

Monday, July 6, 2009


This video is a few days old, but it's well worth watching for Anderson Cooper's reactions alone. At minute 4, he starts to wonder if a joke is being played on him.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Through Clenched Teeth

Fox News anchor Shep Smith holds the distinguished title of "least insane man at Fox" because he has not yet personally killed a Palestinian, and, as a result, liberals tend to like him. He seems like the kind of guy who would fire off a few rounds into the air in the middle of a street fight and yell out, "All right fuckers, everybody calm the FUCK down!"

Here's a link to see Shep just about lose it, then bring himself back from the brink.

Fancy Word For Pushing Some Dude Out The Window

Roger Cohen's semi-weekly dispatches from Iran have been one of the recent highlights of the NY Times' editorial page. In his column today, he argues that it may be best for Obama to refrain from any new diplomatic outreaches to Ahmadinejad as a means of putting pressure on that country after it's tumultuous election. Truth be told, I mildly disagreed with his arguments, but not enough to write about it, until I saw this! [emphasis mine]:

The price of Obama’s engagement may just have become Ahmadinejad’s departure. I think it has. His defenestration is not impossible; it would be forced from within where disaffected clerics and moderates abound;

Holy moly! For those unfamiliar with the definition of defenestration, here it is:

-the act of throwing a thing or esp. a person out of a window: the defenestration of the commissioners at Prague.

Good lord! Roger Cohen, respected op-ed columnist for the New York Times wants to throw I'm-a-dinner-jacket out of a window! What is this? Prague?! Again, from the ol' dictionary:

1620, "the action of throwing out of a window," from L. fenestra "window." A word invented for one incident: the "Defenestration of Prague," May 21, 1618, when two Catholic deputies to the Bohemian national assembly and a secretary were tossed out the window (into a moat) of the castle of Hradshin by Protestant radicals. It marked the start of the Thirty Years War.

That picture is from the wiki-dinner-jacket article on defenestration. Cohen may have left himself a legal out, though, as the wiki definition claims [emphasis mine]:

Although defenestrations can be fatal depending on the height of the window through which a person is thrown (see Falling), or lacerations from broken glass, the act of defenestration need not carry the intent or result of death.

You're a smart cookie, Cohen! But you'll slip up someday, and when you do, ComedyandPolitics will be there.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

God Said No

The few people in the world who believe they have found the one, true God are notoriously rational and scientific. It is in this clear, grounded spirit that Plumber Joey! [! mine] offered up his evidence as to why he shouldn't run for elected office. WorldNetDaily reports (via Thinkprogress):

Asked if he [Joe the Plumber] has plans to run for public office, he replied, "I hope not. You know, I talked to God about that and he was like, 'No.'"

That's right folks. God said, "no."

To celebrate this unlikely parallel thinking between this blog and God, here is a song by the wonderful Dan Bern, aptly titled "God Said No." (Apologies for the truly awful video that accompanies it. It was all they had.)

As an tangentially related afterthought, check out Hitchens' latest article on Slate. I rarely agree with him as much as I do on this issue. The piece is a funny, vicious attack on Nixon, and few writers are funnier and more vicious than Hitchens. He writes:

In debates with religious people, I keep being told that even if not all of religion's supernatural claims can be defended as literally true, at least it can be said that religion encourages morality and makes people behave better. In every Nixon tape that has so far been released, he is at his lowest and ugliest and most inhuman when being incited and encouraged and sometimes outbid by the most famous Christian ever to be born on American soil [Billy Graham]. I merely pass on the observation.

I can't recommend reading the rest of the column highly enough.