It’s Old Fucked-Up Laws Week

My magic underpants wearing governor, Mitt Romney(R-UT), has decided to enforce a 1913 Massachusetts law to prevent out of state gay couples from coming here to get married starting Monday. It’s a shitty law that was put on the books to prevent interracial marriages. He has decided to enforce it without a hint of irony. It is the second dumbest law (1st is at the bottom, under “North Andover”) in the state, and the only piece of legislation to be blatantly hateful, since the one that prevented me from getting my booze on on Sundays has been repealed.

And because there’s no more crime, Ashcroft’s prosecutors have been reduced to charging Greenpeace with the crime of “sailor mongering.” A law that’s been unused for 114 years.

At this point, I wouldn’t put these assholes above repealing women’s suffrage, if it meant they could finally work their way around that pesky law that says abortion is legal.

The Fancy Menace

Click fo more comics

This cartoon isn’t exactly funny. Unless you find it hilarious that the President of the United States of America said this about people who are concerned that the rationale for the Iraq War has been proven to be a lie:

“Bush chastised me [Bob Woodward] at one point because I said people were concerned about the failure to find weapons of mass destruction. And he said, ‘Well you travel in elite circles.’ I think he feels there is an intellectual world and he’s indicated he’s not a part of it – the fancy pants intellectual world. What he calls the elite.”

I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but somehow intellectuals and people who actually have qualifications have become vilified in politics. It was pretty obvious during the 2000 election, when Gore was portrayed as some kind of dopey nerd, (who never said he invented the internet by the way), and Bush as the poor dumb good ole’ boy everybody wanted to have an O’Doul’s with. Gore still won, but the media’s constant harping on Gore being smart helped to bump his margin of victory down to a point where Nader, the Supreme Court and this cunt could steal it.

Bush et al. are in favor of fostering a culture of anti-intellectualism because people who are informed tend to not fall for their bullshit. It just happens that their definition of an intellectual or an elitist is anyone who gets information from a source other than Fox, Talk Radio, or the lyrics of a Toby Keith song. That’s a big tent that includes a lot of people I think are retarded, making me the real elitist; but even these people I look down upon are concerned that the pretext for war was so blatantly fabricated. Although they’d probably use the word ‘reason’ instead of ‘pretext,’ since they are dumb and beneath me.

All week, the phrase, ‘fancy pants elitist’ wouldn’t leave and let any other thoughts into my head. I became fixated on it like some kind of obsessive super-nerd and came up with countless ideas that didn’t work. One involved a guy at the Salvation Army who tries on a pair of sweatpants, and it turns out they were actually magical smarty pants and he walks around in these tight pink sweatpants telling everyone the war was a sham. Very stupid. Then I tried to make a super hero called the Fancy Pants Elitist, whose superpower involved occasionally reading a newspaper. They both seemed too preachy and with so little time left, the cartoon you see is the best I could come up with.

Because they can only get elected by encouraging this culture of the uninformed, they label everyone an elitist or an intellectual, even when they’re obviously not. An analogy with the Red Scare seemed like a good enough premise.

I’m a big fan of the Cold War. Mostly because I’m only 24 and the Soviet Union was never scary, thanks in part to the comic stylings of a man named Yakov (Danger: link contains explosive laughter). I found these images from the height of McCarthyism and basically just wrote the cartoon around them.

Elitism may not be popular because by definition, it’s not very inclusive, but I don’t see anything wrong with it. The “do you want to have a beer with him?” political litmus test has done more damage than picking the most elite candidate ever could. I’m not sure how many voters are aware, but there is almost a zero percent chance of you ever hanging out with the president, so stop voting like it’s going to happen. Vote for the guy who can do the job, then, when Bush is back at Failure Ranch, he might get back on the sauce and invite you over for a brewski.

Cicada Madness

If any entomologists are reading this, your input would be very appreciated. The 17 year cicada brood X is emerging, and I wanted to know if I can expect them here in Massachusetts. All the info I can find makes it seem like they can’t survive winters in the northeast.

I know we get some species of cicada, and we have our own special insect of plague proportions, (thanks E. Leopold Trouvelot!) But I want to be driven mad by the deafening chirping of Brood X.

If Brood X is not a band name already, get to it America!

New Beasties Video

Is it just me, or does the new Beasties Boys single and the video for it look and sound like a cheap imitation of the Beastie Boys? I suppose the video for Ch-Check It Out works as an homage to the past twenty years of Beastie videos, but I personally think Nathanial Hornblower has lost it.

Vikings Without the Badass Helmets

I’m sparing you all a cartoon on the Abu Ghraib mess. It is just not funny, and also every hack with a pen is covering it already. But this blog has no such standards. Here is the minutiae of my thoughts on the matter, in all of its self-indulgent glory:

It’s really bugging me that the people justifying the torture are of the mentality that everyone in prison is guilty of something. They’ve somehow come to the conclusion that each prisoner in those pictures was involved with the hanging of the bodies from the bridge in Falluja. And even if they were, torturing them won’t help the War On Terra. It’s just revenge, and would probably escalate into a violence cycle like the one in Israel.

Assuming everyone in a prison is guilty isn’t even true in America, where inmates presumably had some sort of trial. Trials are a privilege not granted to any of the Iraqis rounded up in midnight raids and sent to Abu Ghraib.

If you’re still under the delusion that all the fuss is just about humiliation and extreme interrogation tactics, here’s a quote from Republican Senator Lindsay Graham:

“We’re talking about rape and murder here, we’re not just talking abut giving people a humiliating experience, we’re talking about rape and murder and some very serious charges.”

She HE has seen video and pictures from the prison that have not been released, including the rape of children. But we’re building schools over there too, so I guess it all evens out.

Less important, but this is an issue I hold dear: Lynndie England has ruined my favorite ironic photograph pose. Now I’ll have to do the “rock on” or “Clinton thumb-fist emphasis gesture,” unless I want every future picture of me to look like I’m making fun of human rights abuses.

70-90% of the Iraqi detainees are innocent. I’m sure after being tortured, some will be guilty of joining the insurgence.

Quit Yer Bitchin’

All this panic about “Kerry’s Faltering Campaign” is crap. There are people who are paying attention, and people who aren’t. Have all of these negative Nellies already forgotten these wise words from White House Chief of Staff, Andrew Card:

“From a marketing point of view, you don’t introduce new products in August.”

Of course he was talking about selling the Iraq debacle, but it also applies to the Democrats who have to sell Kerry to the majority of the voting public who just aren’t paying attention now. It would be foolish for him to blow his campaign chest for a bunch of ads that essentially just preach to the choir.

And from a marketing perspective, if this upcoming campaign were to be compared with the soda wars, Kerry is Coke and Bush is Shasta. Stop worrying.

It’s Not Fair

I read this NYT article about New Yorker cartoonists earlier this week. I got bored and didn’t read the second page until today. After seeing this paragraph, I figuratively shat my pants:

The move to bring in new talent to the magazine is not tension-free. Cartooning for its pages is a zero-sum game; The New Yorker publishes only 18 to 20 cartoons a week, for which it pays an average of $675 each. Space and money taken by up-and-comers is lost for the old guard, who are popular with many readers.

My brain is unable to process the reality that there are people getting paid $675 for just one cartoon, which, at best, will result in a silent, internal chuckle among most of the people who see it. I’m still in denial that the lady who does Cathy makes a living from it.

I’m not saying I deserve that kind of money. But if I got $675 for one cartoon, that would translate to about $30/hr, the kind of pay people get for doing things they’d rather not be doing.

Things To Do In Cambridge When You’re A Shut-In

This weekend, Super Size Me opens at the Harvard Square theater, and just down the street at The Comedy Studio, Mr. Louis CK will be making the funny all weekend long.

This is mainly for friends who read this blog, but non-crazy readers are also welcome to reply. Rather than email or IM a bunch of you who might not give two shits about either of these things, I’m posting it here. If you want to check out either thing let me know.