Category Archives: Politics

Dear Newt: Will there finally be healthcare for all on the Moon?

Who will win the race for Moon Colony Healthcare Provider?

Presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich promises to colonize the Moon if he is elected. I guess he will let the hard questions be answered by NASA, but I suspect he hasn’t really thought this through.

For instance, are we claiming the Moon as a territory of the United States? We ARE the only ones who have been there, so I suppose that’s just as good a reason as any. Hard to believe we’re considering taking a place over that no one else wants… what do we know about the Moon that other governments don’t?

Many questions need to be answered before I become a Moon colonist. For instance, if the Moon becomes American territory, can its residents vote? And can Moon children grow up to become president some day? But the important question for me, as a mother and a person destined to become old, is, “What will my Moon citizen health care options will be?”

Let’s say your family volunteers to help populate the Moon. On the way there your child comes down with the flu. You cannot receive medical benefits until you complete your mandatory six-month quarantine period. And besides, the medical plan considers this a “pre-existing condition” since it happened before you landed on Lunar soil. Luckily, you discover that Moon dust actually deters the development of the flu virus and your child gets well quickly. You have dodged a bullet this time!

See, this whole Moon colony idea is just a wee bit premature. If we take a few decades and get some really smart people with no presidential aspirations whatsoever together to plan this brave new world, we might be able to fix a few things that aren’t working so well down here on the mother planet. This could be our one chance at a “do-over.”

That will never happen.

I suspect that what the government will do is set up some of their cronies in various industries with exclusive rights to provide services to the Moon colonization project. There will be a race to be the first bank, the first casino, the first Moonrover dealership, and the first health care provider.

I would not be surprised to learn there is already a bidding war between Highmark and UPMC over who gets that first health care contract. Those two not-for-profit healthcare systems are already duking it out for total control of the market. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the first highly produced commercials for their Moon Medicine Research team rolled out during the Super Bowl this year.

No, there will be no improvements in how things run on the Moon. Because we still don’t have consensus down here about what’s broken, and the really smart people who know how to fix things are staying away from politics in droves.

We are going to start a new society up there and we’re going to screw that one up too.


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Filed under Humor, Pittsburgh, Politics, satire, Society

Is Tim Tebow the Messiah?

Tim Tebow giving God the glory

Here’s the thing.  If God wanted to get the attention of as many Americans as possible right now, how would he do it?

Would he start small by appearing to a few people and asking them to spread the word that he’s back?  That worked pretty well last time around, except it took a few centuries to really take hold and quite a few people got martyred as a result.

With the internet, the word could spread immediately with posts on Facebook.  What are you doing?  “OMG I saw Jesus today and he said to tell you all he’s back and wants everyone to meet next Saturday night at Mile High Stadium to prepare for the rapture.  Please post this on your wall and ask everyone you know to do the same.” 

But the shelf life of a Facebook post is kind of short.   Twitter might be able to drum up a pretty good crowd for Jesus in Denver with a flash mob shout-out from Ellen Degeneres.  IF she offered a couple grand in cash to the person who could point out Jesus in the crowd.

How is Jesus going to get our attention?  How will we KNOW its really him? I mean, there are so many distractions right now –is it really a good time for Jesus to return?

We’re trying to pick another president for crying out loud!  The Republican Primary is in full swing and has become a platform for discussions of morality and pondering the question of whether certain religions are “true” Christian religions, and, whether, if you commit adultery but are very, very sorry about it, that’s good enough to qualify you as the favorite candidate of true believers.

This is all probably Satan’s doing, of course.  Satan operates not unlike Rupert Murdoch in putting out disinformation that is tantalizing enough to keep us distracted from the truth.  We can’t handle the truth.  It’s just not that interesting.  The primaries are only interesting because they are like a reality show.  On this show, we watch the players scheme to eliminate the other candidates before we get the chance to vote them off the ballot.   Maybe if we got to text our votes in November, more people would play along at home?

What of those who are not paying attention to politics?  They are likely distracted from the news that “Jesus is back in the building” because they have no jobs and fear they will soon be homeless.  Or they are living in fear that their kids will put them out to die on a rapidly melting iceberg (curse you, global warming!) because they can’t afford a proper nursing home.  Actually, that last one might not be so bad — from what I’ve seen, the iceberg might be preferable to the nursing home.

But I digress.

Ok, we have a lot going on in our lives, and we’re pretty focused on day-to-day survival.  But we still have the one simple distraction from our misery that is open to all economic groups, races, cultures, ages, and genders.  And that is sports.  Sports fandom to be exact.  It gives us hope when there often is none.  Where I live, it’s one particular sport: Football.

Enter Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos v. the Pittsburgh Steelers.

“Who wouldda thunk it?” said one of the commentators after the six-time Superbowl Champion Steelers lost in overtime because of a Tim Tebow pass that was taken all the way to the end zone.   Improbable.  But it happened.  Incredible.  Tim Tebow is either the luckiest stiff in the NFL or he truly has God on his side.

Our guys pray too.  They go to church.  They talk about their personal relationships with Jesus Christ too.  But Tebow!  He’s OUT there.  Like it or not, he has created world-wide buzz about his commitment to Jesus Christ not just because he talks about it, and not just because he takes a knee on the gridiron, but because the man just keeps coming through when he has to.

The Broncos could have won that game in overtime by moving the ball steadily down the field yard by yard and then kicking for the 3 points.  But no.  The so-called “inconsistent” passer puts it right in the hands of the receiver and the Steelers’ diminished defensive line is powerless to stop him.  Season over.  Just like that.

The only reason I can find for Tim Tebow’s success is that he actually IS Jesus Christ incarnate.   He’s just enough human to fumble a few now and then and he’s just enough God to deliver when it really counts.  His witness on the field and off is unapologetically directed at drawing attention to God.

If you want to get the American public’s attention, you have to go where they are.  And where they are on Sunday is at the football game — in the stands or in front of the TV.   Tim Tebow is news, and because of last week’s game even MORE people know about him and are talking about his faith and wondering — is God really answering his prayers?  Will he answer mine too?

So there you have it.  There is no other explanation.  Tim Tebow is the Messiah.

See you all in Denver for the rapture!  Dress warm — you won’t need to pack for this trip.  It’s one way.


Filed under celebrity, Humor, Pittsburgh, Politics, Religion, satire, Sports

America won’t accept an angry black president

As soon as I read it, it hit me like a ton of bricks.  My friend and I were in an instant message conversation where I was bemoaning how everyone wants President Obama to show his anger.  Then the response came – “Can Obama, as a black man, show anger in a white world?” 

It was one of those statements that would have made a room fall silent because of how it cuts to the core of the matter.  This is why the President refuses to show his outrage over the BP disaster.  He is well aware that he got elected because he does NOT resemble the stereotypical angry black man.

If he were to start jumping up and down, shouting, and pumping his fists — just imagine the screen captures of that video in the hands of his detractors.  I won’t even go into the racial slurs I am certain they would use to caricature him.   But you may rest assured, there are people out there drooling over the prospect of those images who want to bring him down, and along with him any progress this country might have made in electing a black man to the highest office in the land.

In his interview with Matt Lauer this week he was asked if this disaster didn’t make him want to “kick butt.”  In his response, Obama allowed a rare moment of candor and said he was trying to find out whose “ass” to kick.  Ok, there you go.  A bit of “regular guy” is revealed in his use of the coarser term.  And what do we get for his slight show of anger? 48 hours of running that video clip without the lead-in question along with commentary over whether it was appropriate for him to say “that” word.

I do not think the President consciously holds back because of the angry black man stereotype.  I believe that strong displays of emotion in public are not his temperament.  I know that he had the example of his mother and grandmother as his guide, and suspect they were even-tempered women who taught him to be even-tempered as well.  I haven’t read his autobiography, so I don’t know this for a fact.   But it is not likely for anyone to grow up even-tempered in a home filled with rage.

I concede that I have not been happy with all of his decisions so far.  I wish I could say I am not just a bit disillusioned that the change we need is far from here.  But I have no doubt that our president will continue to display calm resolve under pressure and that this in no way means he is not as mad as hell and doesn’t want to kick some ass. 

I hope he does.  And soon.

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Magic Oil Spill Dispersant: Blow up the TV, throw away the paper

Is there a stronger word than disaster for what is happening in the Gulf?  Because there have been a lot of disasters around the world in recent months, but this one seems to rise above the rest.  The word requires additional adjectives to drive home the point – after 50 days of spewing oil what we have is a cataclismic, life-altering, deadly, preventable disaster.  And that is still an understatement.

Disasters are a dime a dozen these days.  Tsunamis, earthquakes, volcanoes, sink holes, yadda yadda yadda. I mean, how many “disasters” can the inhabitants of this planet take before we all crawl into our bunkers to retreat into denial, eyes shut tight, fingers in our ears, babbling “la la la la la la la” to block out reality?  When the pictures of oil soaked pelicans and globs of unrefined oil get to be too much, why suffer?  If it isn’t on the Tee Vee it isn’t real, so just turn it off and go about your business. What you don’t know won’t hurt you, right?

Words cannot describe what is happening in the Gulf nor the long-term effect it will have on everyone living and those not yet born.  And the visuals have not done it justice – wait for the pictures from space to get some perspective. 

It is as if someone severed our planetary jugular vein.  Earth will not “bleed out” and die, but the “blood” that is gushing from inside her is killing her slowly anyway.   Oil has no natural coagulant to stop the flow.  Earth does not grow new skin to cover its wounds.  

I heard a song on an alternative radio station tonight asking the question “What if God smokes cannabis?”  If I were God, I would be smoking cannabis now.  I created it, right?  So why not make use of it? Now seems as good a time as any.  Because if I were God, I would seriously be rethinking the design flaws in the planet and the human race and wishing I had run the specs past a few angelic focus groups and tested the prototype before I rolled out the final version.   I think God erred in assigning too few brain cells to whatever hemisphere allows us to care for something besides our own interests.  Is there an app for that?

And what if we ARE the prototype?

I hope God gets it right with the upgrade.

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Filed under Green living, Politics, Religion, satire, Society, Sustainability

Tipper and Al Gore separation strikes a blow to soul mate concept

From all accounts from folks who knew them well, Tipper and Al Gore were as close to soul mates as it gets. High school sweet hearts. He was still lifting her off her feet and showing it to the world with his lingering kiss at the democratic convention. The traumas they endured over their son’s near death, the political life, the near miss at the presidency – a lot of stuff to weather. But his passion for saving the planet seems to have overtaken his passion for his wife. We don’t know what happened, but thats the speculation. They grew apart. Sad. Forty years. Not wasted, really. But still. Sad.

Why? I’m thinking, ok, if it’s just that – drifting apart, it’s a common thing. Not like a Tiger Woods thing. Just growing into different people. But how long does it take during a forty year marriage before you start to think, “Is this all there is?” and then start the emotional distancing that leads to a separation? How long do you let that ferment in your psyche until you have to finally say it outloud? Especially if you’re in the public eye and you are considered the model of a perfect couple.

Is there such a thing as a soul mate? Many used to point to Paul and Joanne Newman as the perfect pair because Hollywood marriages are not prone to that kind of longevity. If you’re really a geezer you know that George Burns, who was married to his comedic partner Gracie Allen for thirty years, mourned her passing at the young age of 58 so much that he visited her grave daily. He was down to once a month after a while and kept that routine up most of the rest of his life. He just had to tell her about what was going on in his life. He lived another 32 years without her – to the age of 100 – still visiting her.

I think that some people do find soul mates. Not most of us.   But despite a whole bunch of proof that the overwhelming majority of couples do not find anything close to a soul mate, we still try to believe if we just search long enough, or sign up for E-Harmony, there is some person out there who will make all of our dreams come true forever and ever.  We want the fairy tale and darned if we aren’t going to try and make one come true.

Mark Gungor, YouTube phenom for his hilariously animated and spot on “Men’s Brain’s vs. Women’s Brains” videos, says there is no such thing as a soul mate. Here is the cold shower of logic that Mark Gungor has to offer on the subject. See what you think:

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Filed under celebrity, Family, getting old, Politics, Relationships, Society, Women

Health care bill won’t cover treatment for BPD

It is highly probably that you have never heard of BPD, and yet statistics show that more than 175,000 of you will contract the disorder every DAY.   And those are old stats – circa 2007 – according to a cursory search of both Google and Bing.

BPD, or Blogomaniacal Personality Disorder (Blog Mania for short), is defined as “an extreme need for attention characterized by obsessive web log publishing in search of a mass audience leading to a hefty book advance or movie deal.”  The disorder was first blogged about right here on WordPress and received a response that can only be described as “phenomenal” in that it registered as a mere pin drop with a total of 4 views.   Not surprising, in fact, because the disorder is marked by extreme denial and is frequently characterized as robbing its victims and their readers of a sense of humor.

In a review of the original post, it could be said that the author inadvertently buried the details in a lengthy exposition better suited to a thesis than a blog post.  Point taken.  People with BPD don’t know the meaning of brevity.  You get them wound up on a topic and you can’t make them stop tap tap tapping on the keys until they have tapped it all out of their system. 

Blog Mania claims the free time and even the on-the-job productivity of more and more American workers.  It may very well be that at some point every person with access to the internet will have created at least one blog.  Very few of them will ever be read, most of them will be abandoned, but those inflicted with BPD will continue to search for the elusive blog following.

And now the government wants to rule out BPD as a pre-existing condition not covered under the new health care bill!   For some reason they view the disorder as a mental health issue, and that means it is far more expensive to treat. 

But some legislators actually wish to encourage the spread of Blog Mania in order to create a following of their own — a following that will allow them to finance their re-election campaigns.  So they whip up the media about some talking point of the day which in turn causes the blogosphere to go viral, creating even more new blogs and blog posts.

While congress works behind closed doors to spin the virtues of their newly minted health care legislation, the scurge that is Blog Mania will soon surpass homosexuality as the primary threat to the traditional family.  It is time for congress to act!  Cure BPD NOW or the terrorists win.

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Filed under Humor, Politics, Society, writing

A “Difficult Economy” Christmas Story Part 2

A “Difficult Economy” Christmas Story Part 2  It’s 2009 and Ralphie is all grown up with a family of his own to support.

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Filed under Family, film, Humor, Nostalgia, Politics, satire, Society