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Start Date 2003-12-10 03:33:29 |Entries 143 |Images 13 |

09/13/04 11:11 - ID#33062

Off The Wall

Ok Peeps. It's been a while since we've had an official outing.

Check out Off the Wall this Wednesday for some indie rock tunes.
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09/10/04 11:31 - ID#33061

Mapping Polluters

[inlink]terry,303[/inlink]

Terry - there is a wealth of information on the U.S. at and at . If you would like to fund me, I'd be happy to build a similar site :) .
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09/09/04 11:57 - ID#33060

More Political Banter

I haven't had much to write about lately, but I found this commentary interesting.


By Garrison Keillor August 26, 2004


Something has gone seriously haywire with the Republican Party. Once, it
was the party of pragmatic Main Street businessmen in steel-rimmed
spectacles who decried profligacy and waste, were devoted to their
communities and supported the sort of prosperity that raises all ships.
They were good-hearted people who vanquished the gnarlier elements of their
party, the paranoid Roosevelt-haters, the flat Earthers and
Prohibitionists, the antipapist antiforeigner element. The genial
Eisenhower was their man, a genuine American hero of D-Day, who made it OK
for reasonable people to vote Republican. He brought the Korean War to a
stalemate, produced the Interstate Highway System, declined to rescue the
French colonial army in Vietnam, and gave us a period of peace and
prosperity, in which (oddly) American arts and letters flourished and
higher education burgeoned<and there was a degree of plain decency in the
country. Fifties Republicans were giants compared to today's. Richard Nixon
was the last Republican leader to feel a Christian obligation toward the
poor.

In the years between Nixon and Newt Gingrich, the party migrated southward
down the Twisting Trail of Rhetoric and sneered at the idea of public
service and became the Scourge of Liberalism, the Great Crusade Against the
Sixties, the Death Star of Government, a gang of pirates that diverted and
fascinated the media by their sheer chutzpah, such as the misty-eyed
flag-waving of Ronald Reagan who, while George McGovern flew bombers in
World War II, took a pass and made training films in Long Beach. The Nixon
moderate vanished like the passenger pigeon, purged by a legion of angry
white men who rose to power on pure punk politics. "Bipartisanship is
another term of date rape," says Grover Norquist, the Sid Vicious of the
GOP. "I don't want to abolish government. I simply want to reduce it to the
size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub."
The boy has Oedipal problems and government is his daddy.

The party of Lincoln and Liberty was transmogrified into the party of
hairy-backed swamp developers and corporate shills, faith-based economists,
fundamentalist bullies with Bibles, Christians of convenience, freelance
racists, misanthropic frat boys, shrieking midgets of AM radio, tax cheats,
nihilists in golf pants, brownshirts in pinstripes, sweatshop tycoons,
hacks, fakirs, aggressive dorks, Lamborghini libertarians, people who
believe Neil Armstrong's moonwalk was filmed in Roswell, New Mexico, little
honkers out to diminish the rest of us, Newt's evil spawn and their
Etch-A-Sketch president, a dull and rigid man suspicious of the free flow
of information and of secular institutions, whose philosophy is a jumble of
badly sutured body parts trying to walk. Republicans: The No.1 reason the
rest of the world thinks we're deaf, dumb and dangerous.

Rich ironies abound! Lies pop up like toadstools in the forest! Wild swine
crowd round the public trough! Outrageous gerrymandering! Pocket lining on
a massive scale! Paid lobbyists sit in committee rooms and write
legislation to alleviate the suffering of billionaires! Hypocrisies shine
like cat turds in the moonlight! O Mark Twain, where art thou at this hour?
Arise and behold the Gilded Age reincarnated gaudier than ever, upholding
great wealth as the sure sign of Divine Grace.

Here in 2004, George W. Bush is running for reelection on a platform of
tragedy<the single greatest failure of national defense in our history, the
attacks of 9/11 in which 19 men with box cutters put this nation into a
tailspin, a failure the details of which the White House fought to keep
secret even as it ran th
e
country into hock up to the hubcaps, thanks to
generous tax cuts for the well-fixed, hoping to lead us into a box canyon
of debt that will render government impotent, even as we engage in a war
against a small country that was undertaken for the president's personal
satisfaction but sold to the American public on the basis of brazen
misinformation, a war whose purpose is to distract us from an enormous
transfer of wealth taking place in this country, flowing upward, and the
deception is working beautifully.

The concentration of wealth and power in the hands of the few is the death
knell of democracy. No republic in the history of humanity has survived
this. The election of 2004 will say something about what happens to ours.
The omens are not good.

Our beloved land has been fogged with fear, the greatest political strategy
ever. An ominous silence, distant sirens, a drumbeat of whispered warnings
and alarms to keep the public uneasy and silence the opposition. And in a
time of vague fear, you can appoint bullet-brained judges, strip the bark
off the Constitution, eviscerate federal regulatory agencies, bring public
education to a standstill, stupefy the press, lavish gorgeous tax breaks on
the rich.

There is a stink drifting through this election year. It isn't the Florida
recount or the Supreme Court decision. No, it's 9/11 that we keep coming
back to. It wasn't the "end of innocence," or a turning point in our
history, or a cosmic occurrence, it was an event, a lapse of security. And
patriotism shouldn't prevent people from asking hard questions of the man
who was purportedly in charge of national security at the time.

Whenever I think of those New Yorkers hurrying along Park Place or getting
off the No.1 Broadway local, hustling toward their office on the 90th
floor, the morning paper under their arms, I think of that non-reader
George W. Bush and how he hopes to exploit those people with a little
economic uptick, maybe the capture of Osama, cruise to victory in November
and proceed to get some serious nation-changing done in his second term.

This year, as in the past, Republicans will portray us Democrats as
embittered academics, desiccated Unitarians, whacked-out hippies and
communards, people who talk to telephone poles, the party of the Deadheads.
They will wave enormous flags and wow over and over the footage of firemen
in the wreckage of the World Trade Center and bodies being carried out and
they will lie about their economic policies with astonishing enthusiasm.

The Union is what needs defending this year. Government of Enron and by
Halliburton and for the Southern Baptists is not the same as what Lincoln
spoke of. This gang of Pithecanthropus Republicanii has humbugged us to
death on terrorism and tax cuts for the comfy and school prayer and flag
burning and claimed the right to know what books we read and to dump their
sewage upstream from the town and clear-cut the forests and gut the IRS and
mark up the constitution on behalf of intolerance and promote the corporate
takeover of the public airwaves and to hell with anybody who opposes them.

This is a great country, and it wasn't made so by angry people. We have a
sacred duty to bequeath it to our grandchildren in better shape than
however we found it. We have a long way to go and we're not getting any
younger.

Dante said that the hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who in time
of crisis remain neutral, so I have spoken my piece, and thank you, dear
reader. It's a beautiful world, rain or shine, and there is more to life
than winning.

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09/09/04 02:37 - ID#33059

Jessbob

Just to make myself clear, I agree with you about the name-calling. I don't condone that by any means, especially when one criticizes others for it. I also don't think the Democrats are saints. Just thought it was an interesting read about the evolution of the party.
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08/31/04 10:25 - ID#33058

Community Action

Paul - I'm in for some community involvement. In addition to cleanups, maybe we could have food and clothing drives - some things to help people as winter approaches. I would be willing to help organize some things.

There are all sorts of volunteer opportunities at the United Way site . Maybe we could have a meeting to target a few.
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08/31/04 10:18 - ID#33057

Guest Bartender at Prespa

For one night only, Sue Mafino, proprieter of Shoefly, will be bartending at Prespa. Be there at 8 PM Wednesday Sept 1.

Support your local vendor as she pours your drinks!
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08/12/04 05:19 - ID#33056

What's the Verdict?

Allen St Hardware is nice but small.

Blu and Mohawk are kind of a hike from Elmwood.

The Chippewa bars will be packed tonight.

I say Goodbar or Faherty's.
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08/09/04 10:55 - ID#33055

Midsummer Party

When: Saturday, August 14
8:30 PM
Where: 23 Inwood Place
Buffalo, NY

All epeeps welcome!


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08/06/04 12:08 - ID#33054

Maidencateyes

I also received a ticket for running a red light in Manhattan, even though my car has never been there. My car is white, and the photo showed a black car. I wrote a letter and included a photocopy of my registration, and they dropped the ticket. It's really dumb that they can't figure out that the color and make of your car is completely different than the car in the photo.
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08/30/04 10:33 - ID#33053

Kick Him Off the Site!

A Republican?? We can't have that!!

Just kidding. I think I speak for all of us lefties when I say it would be a welcome change of pace to have someone with which we can have sincere political debates. I encourage you to keep writing about your political views. That's the way we learn from each other. We won't slam you (except for e-paul, but he does that to everybody - don't take it seriously).

By the way, I actually have a couple Republican friends, and I think I might even be dating a Republican. I have yet to beat up any of them.

It was nice meeting you.
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