Archive for July, 2009

The left and dictators: I’ve got a crush on you

July 31, 2009

Just what is it about the political left and their ceaseless embrace of dictators, authoritarians and terrorists? From former President Jimmy Carter’s worldwide “hug a terrorist” tours to Hollywood’s stream of useful idiots trotting down to Cuba to kiss Castro’s ring, liberals simply love their thugs… provided they approach their totalitarian rule from the left side of the political equation.

The more power that a dictator like Huge Chavez accumulates, the more freedoms he steals from the Venezuelan people, the more he can count on Hollywood A listers showing up for photo ops. Even before President Obama began to yuk it up with Chavez, the Venezuelan strongman had Sean Penn on speed dial. With one of their own in the White House, the Hollywood left now has to wait in line to pay homage to oppressors such as Evo Morales of Bolivia and the ever-popular ’80s commie Dannie Ortega. As dictators such as these consolidate their power by shutting down independent media, rigging ‘elections,’ and jailing and killing their political opponents, they can count on a visit from the likes of wrinkled tycoons such as Robert Redford.

Hollywood has seen its fondest dreams come true. As Obama travels the world to apologize for America being a great country that has freed tens of millions from tyranny, they now have a kindred spirit. Like a syrupy musical from the 1950s, Dear leader and the Hollywood lefties bow before their true loves like Iran’s Jew hating Mahmud Ahmadenejad and the ever popular Castro.

Just this week, as Dear Leader “resets” our relationships with dictatorships from Russia to Iran to Cuba, we learn that a who’s-who of Oscar holders made a pilgrimage to Havana. As thousands democrats (with a little ‘d’) rot in Castro’s prisons, as Cuban homosexuals are tortured, Robert Duvall, James Caan and Bill Murray were among the actors visiting the destitute island to pick up awards and kneel before Fidel. Unfortunately, we’ve seen this movie before.

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Roll on David: wheelchair guy covers a lot of turf

July 25, 2009

The Keyster was running late on Thursday night. The sun had already set and the Keyster canine was even slower than usual… sniffing every bush and palm tree between the village and wash-out beach, site of the most glorious sunsets in Sarasota. As the red began to wash out of the western skies, a young man in a motorized wheelchair silently zipped by on Avenida Messina, heading for the beach.

When the canine and Keyster arrived at the western edge of the land a few minutes later, we saw the ponytailed guy parked overlooking the Gulf (Note to the developer of the gazillion dollar, spec-house on Shell Road: your “oceanfront” mansion is on the Gulf; the nearest ocean is 110 miles to the east). But I digress. We struck up a conversation with David. He has muscular dystrophy and is quite the explorer. That night, clad in his FSU t-shirt and shorts, he had rolled from his home near Lockwood Ridge and Webber (for those not familiar with Sarasota, it’s way east of the beach, east of the seven lanes of U.S. 41) all the way to Siesta.

The range of his battery-powered chair was about 16 miles. He calculated that he’d traveled less than seven miles so far, so he had plenty of power to get back home. The chair featured an LED read-out showing remaining battery and indeed, it looked like he had more than half of his juice remaining.

What was really encouraging was how upbeat David was: even though he had been dependent on the chair since 2001 when he blew out his knee from one of his increasing falls, life was good. There were in fact many benefits from “the power of the chair,” he remarked with a grin. For example, he buys the cheapest seats for Bucs games on-line. When he rolls up the gate, the ushers direct him to a landing on the 40-yard line with a perfect view to get frustrated watching the Bucs fritter away leads. He can get to Siesta, Lido, Bird Key and has no trouble rolling over the Ringling Bridge, which rises 75 feet over Sarasota Bay.

We talked about how unfair it was for the NCAA to take away victories from FSU’s Bobby Bowden, the Rays and other guy things. We parted ways and the Keyster and his dog headed back through the Village toward the aging Keyster-mobile for the short drive home. As we neared Midnight Pass, we saw the brilliant LED taillights of David’s chair as he headed north toward the Siesta bridge.

“For we know that these light and momentary troubles are creating in us an eternal glory that far surpasses them all…”

President Obama: A new toothbrushing czar needed to solve the ‘plaque crisis’

July 23, 2009

Let’s see… The federal government makes and sells cars. It owns and operates banks and insurance companies. It owns and runs the largest nation’s largest originator of car loans, GMAC. It just picked up the pension plan for union workers at an auto parts manufacturer. If the libs have their way, it will be in charge of the entire healthcare system very soon. The only sector adding jobs under this Administration is the federal government.

As soon as President Obama declares a ‘crisis,’ it’s time for a federal take-over because as we all know, only central government can solve problems. So the Keyster cringed this past weekend when the cover of the Parade magazine that gets stuffed in his local birdcage liner screamed about a ‘daycare crisis.’ How long will it take for Dear Leader to hold a press conference to tell us that child care is a fundamental right and we’ve all got to pay more taxes for a nationwide Barak Babies system?

And now we have the great comfort of knowing that President Obama is investigating local crimes. Yes, last night, Dear Leader revealed the results of his personal review of a dust-up between a Harvard professor and the police department in Cambridge, Mass. and declared: racism. The most powerful man on earth, when he’s not apologizing for his country, has weighed in on an incident involving a white cop and a black professor. Was anybody surprised that the first ‘post-racial’ President found racism was the problem?

How would you like to be in the shoes of Sgt. James Crowley of the Cambridge PD today? Here’s a guy trying to do his job and the President of the United States calls him a ‘stupid’ racist.

How Barak Obama ‘sells’ his healthcare debacle

July 22, 2009

President Obama has announced that he’s going to personally handle getting Congressional support for the massive nationalization of healthcare. Even some Dems are balking at swallowing this trillion-dollar mess that will destroy the best healthcare system in the world. (Aside: is there a more brilliant example of an oxymoron than “fiscally-conservative Democratic”?) But Dear Leader is determined to ensure that every American will have access to a healthcare system modeled on those accessed by the happy citizens of Myanmar and North Korea, where the average lifespan now approaches 41 years.

And, surprise, he’s taking to the airwaves on his state-sponsored outlets of CNN, ABC, NBC and CBS to yet again to argue why we must, right now, this very minute, pass all of this. With a fresh teleprompter to the left and to the right, Dear Leader’s dulcet tones will be carried throughout the land as he will claim credit for:
— Saving us from a depression caused by those evil and icky Republicans
— Caring so deeply about all us that he’s willing to guarantee that everyone will be able to wait six months for routine procedures, and be completely denied care when they are older than, say, 65 and of no use to society
— Finally getting taxpayers to pay for abortion on demand
— Passing a “Hate Crimes” bill, under the cloak of darkness, that will result in the execution of anyone who hurts another person’s feelings… providing the aggrieved person has never voted Republican

The Keyster was fortunate to have placed a secret microphone in the Oval Office this week. We captured DL discussing the merits of Obamacare with a first-term Democratic Congressman worried about the implications of taxing his constituents into servitude. We have redacted his name to protect the innocent.

Obama: “I understand you have some questions about healthcare reform, Mr. XXXX.”
Congressman: “I do Mr. President. How are we going to pay for the trillions of dollars this program will cost? How do I justify to the voters my approval of a system that will result in rationing of care?”
Obama: “Those are legitimate questions which I, Barak Obama who came from humble circumstances and who is the savior of the United States as well as the world, will now answer. You’ve got a nice family, don’t you? Rahm, what’s his address? Yes, we know where you live.”
Congressman: “Are you threatening me, Mr. President?”
Obama: “Let me be clear about this: I do not threaten. People support me because I have steely resolve and my wife has a vegetable garden. Have you seen this photo of we took you last month at the party at the French Embassy. Does your wife know of your fondness for Gallic interns.”
Congressman: “That’s a remarkable argument in favor of reforming healthcare, Mr. President. You can count on my vote.”

Hope and Change: Bumper sticker economics lead us off the cliff

July 20, 2009

Last Tuesday while making his daily Big Speech, President Obama’s most important possession came crashing down around him. As his left side teleprompter shattered on the White House floor into thousands of shards, Dear Leader remarked, “Oh goodness, sorry about that guys.”

We could only wish that DL was finally acknowledging what even some of his supporters are seeing: his economic agenda is just like that teleprompter. Broken. Expensive. And utterly failed.

Let’s look at just two of the results so from the Obama administration:
— The deficit this year likely will top $2 trillion, quadruple what it was in 2008
— Unemployment, which Dear Leader guaranteed wouldn’t top 8%, is at 9.5% and heading for double digits just as surely as the New York Times will blame it all on Dick Cheney

And keep in mind: this is all before the Dems launch their really big programs — the national energy tax and nationalized health care. Things are so dismal that DL today put off releasing the mid-summer budget update. In other words, this administration is terrified of revealing more bad economic news that might jolt even the most loyal of libs in Congress to wonder whether this madness can continue.

Dear Leader, Pelosi and Reid know they’ve got to move fast to ram through the energy tax and the takeover of health care. They want it all done before Congress recesses next month. With opinion polls showing voter support eroding faster than the ratings for Katie Couric on CBS, the window is closing. The Dems are so desperate to complete their socialist agenda before the public wakes up that they are running attack ads against… wavering Democrats! That’s right, they’re using campaign contributions to bully their own members to toe the line.

If you think things are bad now — and unemployment in the Keyster’s home state of Florida is at 10.6% and heading up like a shuttle launch — this is just an hors d’oeuvre for the entree of fiscal carnage that will result if Dear Leader succeeds with his big stuff. Piling tax after tax on businesses will send assuredly send ever more jobs to places like India and China. And with the feds controlling an ever higher percentage of the GDP, prosperity will be sucked out all Americans who don’t work for the federal government.

So, what can be done? Until the 2010 mid-terms, all of us needs to be barraging our U.S. Representatives and Senators. Implore them to stand against the energy tax (which goes by the howler name of American Clean Energy and Security Act) and health care “reform” as envisioned by Obama.

And then take a walk at sunset and thank God for giving us such as wonderful planet.

Date Night Disaster II: “The Page Turner” bums out Mrs. K

July 18, 2009

For those readers living on Siesta Key who navigate the Grand Canal, please be aware of a floating hazard — the Keyster’s DVR. Yes, this insidious device has trashed another date night. Here’s the problem: the DVR (that’s digital video recorder for those not so cursed) offers a mere one-sentence description of movies that are available for recording. Last week, the Keyster recorded and showed Mrs. K Year of the Dog, which featured canine carnage that made Rambo seem like a Raffi concert (the story of this tragedy is featured further down on this blog).

Just yesterday, the Keyster found an intriguing offering on The Sundance Channel. The Page Turner was said to be a tale about a 10-year old piano protege and her failure at a big audition. It hinted at the little girl from Paris fighting back from her defeat. I had visions of a Rocky like plot: the spunky tyke overcoming stiff challenges to conquer the music world with her talent and grit. The final scene would show her stunning the cynical judges and a jaded audience with her mesmorizing performance. Because we’re a musical family thanks to Mrs. K, The Page Turner seemed ideal for a quiet Friday evening together.

Not quite. The film opened with some promise. It was in French with subtitles, right on target for Mrs. K who speaks passable French. In the opening scenes, we watch the girl prepare for her audition at a big music conservency in Paris. Melanie’s parents are butchers, and the director intertwined scenes of piano practice with the father dismembering bloody animals. We failed to pick up the director’s hints at where we were heading. We assumed that when she made it into the prestigious music school, she’d have escaped her humble, carnivorous background… butcher to Bach.

So naturally we were cheering for Melanie as she climbed the steps toward the audition that will make or break her. She bows to the judges and sits down at the grand piano. Melanie starts out beautifully, the music flowing from her tiny fingers. However, right in the middle of her performance, an assistant enters the room and hands a photo to one of the judges. It seems that one of our evaluators is a famous concert pianist and somebody wanted her autograph. As she signs the photo, Melanie is distracted and stops to stare. “Keep playing my dear,” the judge says as she finishes signing.

Too late. Melanie cannot recapture the magic and stumbles through the rest of the piece. She leaves the room with tears flowing down her cheeks. Time for a Rocky like training routine in preparation for the dramatic climax? Actually, the rest of the film is about revenge as Melanie goes Dirty Harry on us.

Anyway, after some plot twists, 10 years later Melanie winds up working for the rude judge, Ariane, as a nanny and page turner, the unassuming person who sits behind the pianist and turns the pages of the music during performance. Of course Ariane doesn’t realize who her assistant really is.

In short order, Melanie: wrecks the Ariane’s marriage; destroys her musical career; inflicts permanent injury on Ariane’s young son; rams a cello end-pin into the foot of a lecherous cellist; and finally causes Ariane to keel over (dead?) in the next to last scene. Not exactly the uplifting film the Keysters had been expecting. We wanted triumph…and got a French Glenn Close in full Fatal Attraction mode.

Verizon: hitting a high note of customer satisfaction

July 16, 2009

The Keysters were enjoying their usual sunset at the beach this past weekend. They were tossing the football, while the dog happily chased a tennis ball. The crowd was building for the daily melting of the sun into the Gulf. In the tranquility of the moment, nobody had an inkling of what was about to happen.

And then, faster than the Prez can nationalize a large company, the youngest Keyster’s six-month old BlackBerry popped out and went skipping like a stone into the briny Gulf. It was snatched from the surf before it had even stopped moving, but it didn’t look good. Salt water and delicate electronics: not conducive to efficient communications.

Back home, we quickly rinsed the BBerry in fresh water, dissembled it and covered it with rice, a tip gleaned from Popular Mechanics. In the morning, the device actually powered up, cruelly raising hopes that we’d saved it from a salty death. Alas, a few minutes later it turned itself off without responding to any commands. We needed professional help.

As we drove up the Alltel store, the normally bustling parking lot was empty. It turns out Verizon had completed its acquisition of regional Alltel and shuttered Alltel retail outlets. As we drove across the street to the Verizon store, I warned the junior Keyster that this could be a long and frustrating trip. After all, we’d been with Alltel for several years and were used to indifferent and often downright hostile service.

After about a five minute wait, Jake called our name. (Observation: nearly all of the dozen or so male Verizon reps in the store wore their hair like the black-spectacled dude in the Verizon commercials.) But I digress. Keyster junior told the tale of woe — how BlackBerry met the Gulf. He listened intently. “I’ll be right back,” Jake said, disappearing into the back room.

About 10 minutes later, he walked up carrying a brand new BlackBerry. “It was still under warranty,” he said with a smile. He even managed to transfer all of the contacts from the oxidized BB to the new one. The cost? $0.00.

“You’re my hero,” the youngest Keyster told Jake as we left the store. It’s not often a company vastly exceeds consumer expectations. But Verizon did. Oh, we were already loyal Verizon consumers of their fab Fios and Internet service and are very glad to add wireless to the mix.

Bush/Cheney, it’s worse than we knew: they wanted to kill our enemies

July 14, 2009

The uproar inside the Beltway continues today with this stunning disclosure: the Bush administration actually had plans to kill leaders of the terrorist group that murdered more than 3,000 Americans in 2001. Democrats and the Obama administration are outraged at this news. They are plotting to convene “truth commissions” right out of Orwell’s 1984 to find out who’s responsible.

The Keyster helpfully provides this pocket guide on the contrasting philosophies between Bush and Dear Leader when dealing with Al Queda and other groups dedicated to slaughtering free people:

Obama Administration:
Title of program: Advising Potential Miscreants about Their Errant Ways
Theme song: “I love you, you love me” by Barney the Purple Dinosaur
Approach in dealing with terrorists: Declare that we’ve all made mistakes, especially America. Apologize and ask them to please be nice or we’ll send you for a ‘time out’ in Bermuda.

Bush Administration

Title of program: War on Terror
Theme song: U.S. Marine Corps Hymn (“From the hall of Monetzuma…”)
Approach in dealing with terrorists: Kill them before they kill us

Obama and his press pals: all we need is a laugh track

July 13, 2009

A few years ago, the youngest member of the Keyster clan would watch The Disney Channel as often as possible. The shows such as Hannah Montana and Zach and Cody were all built on the same premise: kids get into uproarious situations, clueless parents arrive on scene, kids try unsuccessfully to deflect parents’ attention away from the mess. The children in these sit coms typically would try to distract their folks by clumsily trying to change the subject, “Hey, I know, let’s go fishing!”

Which brings us to President Obama and his “media” minions such as NY Times, WashPo, NBC, ABC, AP, CBS, CNN and, well, everyone except talk radio. The uproarious situation: employment is soaring to unheard of levels, the “stimulus” bill profoundly is failing so we gotta do another, a massive energy tax on the horizon, Dear Leader running GM and Chrysler, healthcare about to be nationalized, taxes skyrocketing, and that’s just a few of trains this administration keeps piling up.

So what does the media suddenly focus on? That’s right, the Bush administration! Most of this past weekend our beloved lapdogs dutifully took the Democratic headfake and focused almost exclusively on their favorite boogeyman: Dick Cheney. When all else fails, Dear Leader can count on his pals to get hysterical about how Cheney and Bush, well, kept us from suffering another terrorist attack.

Dems flooded the airwaves starting on Friday, declaring their outrage that the CIA had some secret programs. They were shocked, that’s right, shocked, to learned that the Bush administration used everything at their disposal to keep us safe. The usual suspects like Senators Turban (oops, that’s Durbin) and Feinstein tried to hide the disaster in the kitchen while pointing an increasingly anxious public toward the big distraction. All we need is Hannah’s brother to run into the scene covered with flour.

I wonder if it’s possible to program a laugh track into the teleprompter (TOTUS) that Dear Leader clings to like a toddler with his blankie? Actually, considering the way the “media” jokes around with Gibby and Dear Leader, we don’t need one. Somebody please call Rewrite.

Date night disaster: “Year of the Dog,” possibily the worst date movie in history

July 11, 2009

The Keysters were set for a classic Florida night together. Fish sandwiches at the tacky but always tasty Captain Curt’s on the south end of Siesta. A sunset walk at ‘wash-out beach’ west of the Village, where our dog sniffed many a rear end and chased a tennis ball. Arriving back home, the Keyster had specially recorded just the movie for dog-lovers like Mrs. Keyster, Year of the Dog.

I didn’t know much about it, except I had viewed a snippet that showed a harried woman with 12 dogs jammed into her car, barking happily at startled onlookers. It looked like the sort of light-hearted comedy that would cap a perfect evening together. One thing to know about Mrs. K: she’s over-the-top about dogs. Both screens on her flip-phone feature photos, not of our children or even the hunky Keyster, but of our original dog who died last year.

During the opening scenes of Year of the Dog we met the heroine, a ditzy, single woman whose life was centered around her dog. The mutt, which the scriptwriters tagged with the truly irritating name of Pencil, was cute enough — a beagle who slept on her bed, rode on her lap and otherwise gave meaning to one of the most forlorn screen characters since the bread thief in Les Miserables.

So when Pencil had to do some business in the middle of the night, our heroine let it out into her fenced backyard and went back to sleep. She woke up a few hours later, with no Pencil was on the bed. She put on a dowdy nightgown, apparently left over from the final episode of Father Knows Best, and dashed outside in search of her love. There was Pencil digging under the fence, just about to burrow through to the other side. So she snatched Pencil up and brought him back inside to safety, right? Wrong, popcorn brain.

The scriptwriters, who should be bound with duct tape and forced to listen to old Bill Clinton speeches as punishment, inexplicably wrote this into the movie: a woman, whose entire existence relied on a 20-pound furball for any sort of happiness, left Pencil outside, seconds away from breaking loose, and casually went back to bed. At this point the Keyster began to have a bad feeling about this movie, sort of like anytime Nancy Pelosi opens her mouth.

So our heroine wakes up again late in the morning, and of course there’s no Pencil on the bed. She runs outside and, what do you know, Pencil’s not in the backyard. Mrs. Keyster started to get nervous. “Pencil’s not going to die, is he?” she asked. I assured her that no screenwriter would, ever, ever, knock off the hero in the first reel.

Anyway, ditz-head hears a pitiful whimpering coming from over the fence. She frantically knocks on her neighbor’s door, and together they run into his backyard to see… Pencil, in a fine bit of acting, lying on his side, barely moving. She scoops Pencil in her arms and heads to the vet. The soundtrack, a droning note on the piano and arpeggio minor chords on a classical guitar, announced that Pencil wasn’t long for this movie.

Sure enough, the kindly, fat vet assistant solemnly walks out from the backroom. In “acting” typical of this bomb, it would have been more nuanced if she held up a neon sign that blared “PENCIL’S DEAD!!!!” The cause of Pencil’s demise? “Toxic poisoning,” she intoned with a slight shake of her head and great misty eyes. Toxic poisoning? What other kind of poison is there, you feeb!

By now, Mrs. K was holding her mouth, choking back tears. The Keyster also was about to cry, mainly because he had wasted 45 minutes watching this turkey. Before too long, other dogs followed Pencil to the big boneyard in the sky.

Included was, I kid you not, Buttons and Valentine. To make matters even worse, little Buttons was disabled, his rear legs supported by a kiddy wagon so he could bravely get around the house. No matter, the scriptwriters gleefully had him mauled to death by a psycho German Shepherd. If that doesn’t get the waterworks flowing, you’re colder than Henry Waxman.

Mrs. K finally fled the room, choking back sobs as visions of Buttons being disemboweled ran through her head. Well, to close our tale of dating disaster, there was no joy in Keysterville last night. The morale: pre-screen your movies carefully.