Spiraling Toward Irrelevancy

Never has a blog title spoken quicker to the absolute truth than "Spiraling Toward Irrelevancy" ...


No Time For Love, Dr. Jones / TGO Radio / Studio / Lincoln Blog

Here’s how I know it’s time to work: I lost interest in sex over the weekend.

This happens periodically. My moods swing just frequently enough to guarantee I’ll spend a significant portion of every year repelled by the idea of the fairer sex. (2005 was a rare exception; managed to whore around pretty good last year.) The greatest such period occurred in 1999 – 2000, when I went 18 months without giving a single female so much as a sideways glance, but normally it only goes on for a few months before I wake up one morning and find myself dry humping a fire hydrant.

Felt this coming Saturday afternoon while entertaining some female company. As things got interesting I felt that old twinge; indifference. Not so much toward her (though I have since developed it, for reasons I will not get into here) but toward the act itself. I made some crude joke to get myself out of it and got rid of her ASAP. This was (is) good news – I tend very much to cater to my desires as I have them, and so by eliminating female consumption (I refuse to date steadily, so I’m unsure what else to call it) I allow myself the time to concentrate on what matters: Mr. Lincoln’s corpse, the column, the radio show, the websites ….

Speaking of TGO Radio, we taped a test show last Friday night … the fact I’ve yet to listen to it should tell you what I think about it. We didn’t just take a few weeks off; it’s been eight months since Jeff dipped out on the first season. One test show isn’t going to knock all the rust off. A lot of tightening will need to happen before I can even think of taking the second season to its three person audience.

The studio is just now coming along, one of the many projects I have going at the same time. In fact, it should be finished today.

The Lincoln’s Tomb blog is doing very well … check it out here. See you tomorrow.


"Lincoln's Tomb" Blog / TGO Radio

The Lincoln's Tomb blog has been updated - click here if interested.

TGO Radio’s first test show for Season Two comes this Friday afternoon around 5.30. Having finally expressed my belief we won’t make it through the entire season (12 shows), studio re-construction won’t begin until about noon on Friday. A lot more work will have to be done now than was last May, but thankfully if the show continues, it will only have to be done once.

If there are highlights, you can find them here exclusively, as TGORadio.com is not up and active yet.


Column: "Al Sharpton is Wrong About 'The Boondocks,' Naturally"

It applies to liberals generally, but for the purposes of this column we’ll call it the Sharpton Standard: Any one person, position or product’s worth should be measured in direct proportion to Al Sharpton’s opposition to it; in other words, the louder Sharpton’s voice against something, the greater the odds that thing is worthwhile. Today that thing is “Return of the King,” the controversial ninth episode in The Boondocks cartoon series, based on the syndicated comic strip, which airs Sunday nights at 11pm Eastern, during Cartoon Network’s “Adult Swim” block.

In total, Sharpton is objecting to “nigger,” a word sprinkled rather liberally throughout the series, but in this case made to come from the lips of an animated Martin Luther King, Jr., pulled from death in a script written by Aaron McGruder, the comic strip’s creator and original artist. “Cartoon Network must apologize and also commit to pulling episodes that desecrate black histories figures,” Sharpton said. “We are totally offended by the continuous use of the n-word in McGruder’s show.”

Doubtful Sharpton has seen or heard anything other than those excerpts offensive to him; also doubtful Sharpton sought them out himself, as opposed to some minion barging into his office with a piece of tape he “had to see.” Which is too bad, because when viewed completely, it’s hard to believe Sharpton would have this much of a problem.

We begin with this fact: Every summary of “Return of the King” you’ve read (other than the one I’m about to give you) is wrong. Not because reporters are trying to deceive you, but because they haven’t actually seen the episode and are therefore forced to rely upon faulty wire reports and other reporters’ flawed summations. “Return of the King” it set upon an interesting premise: King didn’t die on that horrible day in Memphis, he fell into a coma from which he didn’t awaken until October 2000.

Not long after waking King signs book and movie deals; the biopic is released one week after 9/11 and suffers greatly because of apathetic audiences, while in October 2001 he appears on Politically Incorrect and is asked how he believes America should respond to the Tragedies, given his belief in non-violence. “As a Christian, we are taught that you should love thy enemy, and if attacked, turn the other cheek.” King becomes a social pariah. His book is crushed, and in December 2001 CNN names him one of this country’s 10 most unpatriotic Americans.

Cartoon King befriends 10-year-old Huey Freeman and his grandfather Robert at a book signing no one else attends; eventually Huey convinces King to start the first black political party, whose defining moment is scheduled to come at an “emergency action planning committee meeting.” Realizing he has no experience with modern media, King employs an “urban promotions firm” to get the word out. The firm promptly fills the meeting with what we will politely call undesirables.

Thrust into a culture he simply cannot fathom, King watches his meeting descend into an out-of-control party, complete with crooked doormen, spurious speakers, loud music, dancing and fistfights. Finally, King can’t take anymore and assumes the podium, where he ascends into the tirade Al Sharpton finds so disturbing. It begins, “Is this it? This is what I got all those ass whoopins for?”

The scene is cut as to suggest King carries on for quite some time, covering a wide variety of topics before basically admitting defeat and announcing he’s moving to Canada. The speech is played all over television the next day – suddenly blacks are unified in a common desire to shake off “normal” and aspire to greater things. In a critical voiceover at the end of the episode Huey says, “It’s fun to dream.”

Unfortunately, McGruder writes an Oprah Winfrey presidency and a riot outside the White House into the dream (ironic, given King’s inclination toward non-violence), but his point is clear to anyone watching the show with open eyes: Aaron McGruder wants blacks to think better of themselves. He is saying, Reject mediocrity. What’s so wrong with that? Sharpton would say, “Why bring Dr. King into it? Why bring that word into it?” Unnaturally preoccupied with the thought of fictional reincarnations of dead icons dropping racial slurs in a cartoon, Sharpton never thinks enough to ask the real question: Who better? What other character could McGruder have employed to better make the greatest point, which is that real change comes from within?

10 February 2006


"Who Dares Run the Mohammad Cartoons?"

Having now ruminated over them for a few days, I'm still not seeing a great difficulty in running or posting them ... see them here.

Brian S. Wise's Advice For Young Writers

If you can do anything else in the world with any proficiency, do that thing instead of writing.


Tiny Updates: TGO Radio, "Lincoln's Tomb"

TGO Radio could be back "on the air" with season two as soon as three weeks from now. Seasons will run 12 weeks and have four week breaks in-between. As there will be a new sports segment, we have discussed recording every week during next football season, but nothing is final.

Word from New Orleans is that lead researcher Jennifer Bednarek will begin her work on Lincoln's Tomb this Thursday, 09 February and will include stops at Tulane and Loyola. My work will begin Friday the 10th, as I'll be writing a column on Thursday for Friday release.

Column: "They Don't Have the Guts to Impeach Bush"

There was a time when I desperately hoped Maxine Waters would run for president. My plan was to drop whatever else was in the pipeline – columns, books, gainful employment, anything – and dedicate every waking moment to the complete intellectual vivisection of her unfortunate career. For this I was prepared to take the battle of ideas to any forum that would have me, from television and radio to stump speeches and livestock auctions, until her campaign became a quivering mass of disjointed stabs in the dark. Which would have taken about four weeks – five tops. Alas, this dream candidacy never materialized, though thankfully I was able to dedicate my spare time to the scraps left over by equal disasters named Gore, Kucinich, Sharpton and Dean.

Once in awhile, though, Representative Waters throws a bone. Here she is on 31 January: “If a president’s untruthfulness about sexual relationships is an impeachable offense, then surely spying on American citizens, undermining the Constitution and contravening current standing law are impeachable offenses.” At first I thought, I wonder who taught her the word “contravene.” Then I thought roughly these things, in roughly this order.

During the History Channel’s otherwise brilliant special about Abraham Lincoln, Gore Vidal went on at some length about presidential powers. Lincoln’s suspending habeas corpus, closing newspapers sympathetic to the Confederacy and imprisoning unfriendlies (many just casually unfriendly) were all justified by the Constitution in a time of war. Unlike later, Vidal continued, when a certain unnamed president took actions outside Constitutional boundaries; we are not, as a matter of fact, at war. “The war on terror is like a war on dandruff. It’s a metaphor. The Civil War was serious.”

Count me among those believing Vidal’s relevance is a Great Wonder of the World, but I agree with him to this extent: You cannot fight a “war against terror” because terror is an emotional state. President Bush fights terrorists and terrorism, a charge not so much chosen as thrust upon him. Republicans believe the president’s efforts against terrorists are far reaching and important enough to warrant Constitutional protection, Democrats don’t. Republicans believe the 14 September 2001 resolution gives Bush the authority to pursue terrorists in the ways he has pursued them, Democrats don’t. Republicans believe the United States Signals Intelligence Directive gives the administration the authority to tap certain phone calls, Democrats don’t. (Doubtless most people have never read either USSID or the resolution in question.) And there’s no changing anyone’s mind – in fact, a few Democratic legislators are starting to believe NSA wiretapping is an impeachable offense.

People should understand why the discussion arises – because the Constitution offers no other recourse if a president breaks the law – but should also know they’re right to roll their eyes. Impeachment here seems like quite a stretch. Obviously Richard Nixon would have been impeached had he not resigned, though few remember those who wanted to impeach Carter after his failed attempt to rescue the American hostages in Iran; Reagan for Iran Contra; Bush for prosecuting the Persian Gulf War. When everyone should be impeached, it loses its effectiveness.

Clearly Democrats are struggling to formulate a uniform response to wiretapping, but two things stand in their way. One: Wiretapping is popular. Americans want their enemies watched, be they confirmed or suspected, period. Two: Democrats are in a position to make substantive gains this November; the idea of impeachment before or after the midterm elections could hurt their chances. They are against wiretapping, but softly, sending only resident fools to mention impeachment (e.g., Boxer, Waters, Lewis, Dean), fearing that anything stronger will spoil a real electoral opportunity. Clinton’s boy-themed excesses set the Democratic party back 11 years and would have cost it a generation if not for newly minted Republican excesses.

Even Harry Reid knows what’s at stake. “I’m not a big fan of impeachment. I think it should come only when all other avenues have been exhausted and that certainly hasn’t been the case here …. I think we’re way above the radar screen. I think impeachment this time is not something we need to talk about. I think we need to talk about the other failures of government and I don’t think we need to go rushing off to the ‘I’ word.” He may not have a grip on the real world, but Senator Reid understands politics.

Democrats are struck by the notion of passivity being to their benefit, but have too much to lose. They don’t have the guts to impeach Bush – now or ever.

07 February 2006


Islam is Not a Religion of Peace. Sorry.

Here’s why column writing has remained so difficult: I see news, I react to news in a sentence or less, and then, taking confidence in my reaction, can think of nothing further to say about the news.

For example: Danish cartoons depict Mohammad in unflattering ways. (Well, unflattering to Muslims.) Riots ensue. My reaction? Catholics don’t riot. The end. Even when a crucifix is dropped into urine and called art. (I’ve always wondered if liberals would have called it art if a two-sided photo of John Kennedy and Bill Clinton had been placed in a jar of urine instead.) Even when a painting of the Virgin Mary has shit flung on it. Even though there hasn’t been a positive portrayal of a priest or nun in movies or on television since Boy’s Town.

Oh, Catholics protest, and they boycott, and they send Bill Donohue on television to get all loud and twitchy, which are all finer reactions than “setting fire to the Danish Consulate, attacking a Maronite Catholic church and smashing car and shop windows in protest” in Beirut, according to the Chicago Tribune online.

I’m more surprised by the fact Islamic protests are starting to look more and more like those protests surrounding World Trade Organization meetings than I am by the fact they exist at all.


Thursday Update on Saturday II: New Neighbor, Uncle Ruckus, Steinhorn, Other Nonsense.

In the exactly four years I’ve lived here at Camp TGO, I’ve had four downstairs neighbors. The first was a woman who was very quiet but smoked pot continuously (I knew because I could smell it, continuously) and didn’t pay rent, because potheads don’t pay rent, they pay their dealers. She was gone in very short order. The second was a guy who stayed here for a few years and became a good buddy of mine, Smitty. The third was Pothead Gina, an early nominee for the White Trash Hall of Fame, a nitwit of such proportions she was simultaneously a disgrace to not only her gender, but her race, as well. Eventually, Pothead Gina brought in her physically gorgeous pothead daughter, who in turn brought a boyfriend. The latter two paid the bills, because Pothead Gina couldn’t be bothered to work. (Again, potheads don’t pay bills, they pay their dealers.) A few months ago, Pothead Gina and Hot Daughter got into a fight; a window was broken, an arrest was made – and they were gone, mercifully.

(This must sound like a shithole neighborhood, but I assure you, it’s actually quite a nice place to live, or else I wouldn’t have stayed here for four years.)

Now we have Lori, a black woman who loves the white man. (Not in the way Uncle Ruckus loves the white man, I mean physically. I mention it only because I wanted to mention Uncle Ruckus, the world’s most self-hating black man and the funniest recurring character on The Boondocks cartoon. As soon as I can isolate the audio, I’ll post the song he sings in the show’s first episode, which if I remember correctly is called “Don’t Trust Them New Niggers Over There,” a song so utterly racist and wrong it’s hilarious. It will definitely be included in the new TGO Radio’s “Out of Context Audio” segment.)

Lori is very pleasant and respectful of a writer’s sleeping schedule. In other words, she’s perfect. We’ve spoken a few times … I don’t know much about her, except that she’s from Fort Wayne, Indiana, her boyfriend finishes early and she has phenomenal interior decorating skills. (The knowledge of her boyfriend came about 7.30am last Sunday, before Lori and I had a chance to talk about the unrequited beauty that can be found in silence. It hasn’t happened since.) In return I have asked about her work and sleeping schedule, as to avoid waking her … as it turns out, she works early in the morning until about 3pm and is a very heavy sleeper (thank God).

No sooner did I call Leonard Steinhorn a nitwit, badmouth the ad for his book “The Greater Generation” and post his reply e-mail to me, this blog had its biggest week since I posted excerpts of a Master / Slave contract last year. Steinhorn and I have traded fistfuls of e-mails … he still doesn’t always get when I’m joking with him, but otherwise it’s gone well. I suggested the two of us appear on the Falafel Factor and stage a fistfight ala Jerry Lawyer and Andy Kaufman in 1981, and he didn’t seem averse to the idea. He has talked me into at least reading the book, which I will buy as soon as I have the extra money. I did not suggest he should read mine, which is free and can be found here.

And now, the reason you come here: Nonsense.

“Pub chef Mark Hunt accidentally stabbed himself to death after a knife trick went grotesquely wrong …. He screamed for help and his girlfriend … and boss found him slumped over a sink mumbling: “It slipped, it slipped.”

Greatest Story Ever: Jenna Jameson admitted on the Howard Stern show that she and Jenny McCarthy once had a lesbian makeout session. I knew Jenny McCarthy was cool.

Hillary Clinton, in the middle of saying “No shit, Sherlock.”

Kamikaze Crocodile Attacking Cars.