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November 4, 2004

dumber than a box of headlines

I'm glad that the Yahoo NewsBox has rebounded so quickly from a bitterly contested election to start with the lies, lies, lies:
• European papers mixed on Bush re-election

Yeah.  Sure.

Mixed between "those stupid assholes" and "those stupid fucking assholes".

And that's just from reading the story the headline's linked to.  I'm sure actual Europeans could flesh this one out, if we're still allowed to talk to them.

Posted by mrbrent at 4:29 PM

cautious optimism

Call me the hippie that I probably would've been were I born ten years earlier, but sometimes the universe provides when you least expect it.

Posted by mrbrent at 1:56 PM

dear media 11.4.04

Dear Media:

Great job on the whole "moral values" story!  That is some sexy shit!  Well, to the extent that an aboslute lack of any sexual content is contained therein.  Unless it is between a man and his wife, or his whore.

Especially handy of you to distill allll of the issues affecting the election down to one.  That will, it will be a lot easier for red staters the American people to understand why they voted.  Besides, of the 59 million Bush votes, there couldn't have been more than fifteen or twenty thousand that weren't directly predicated on "moral values", so what's the big diff?

And this may seem like an alarming amount of praise coming from me, but, maybe I'm just... alarmed?  Yes, alarmed!  Alarmed at the dexterity with which you identify a trend, like, say, this "moral values" issue, and then report it as news!  Because, really, the American people don't need to know much more than the headline, right?  Interview a few Mid-Western Bapists, throw 700 words around it, and then your job is done!  In fact, you should limit all news from now on to "the sky is blue" stories on no more than fifteen words in length.  Like, "Kerry voters didn't like Bush."  Stop the presses, right?

So, congrats, media!  By holla-ing "moral issues" from your print and television rooftops as loud as you can, you've not only bansihed every other election issue, like the economy, terrorism and the Iraq war into the dustbin of long-ago despite the fact that these issues affected, oh, about 55 anna half million votes, no, not only have you done that, you've also extinguished any conversation about moral issues other than, "How will the Dems pimp their faith?"

So really, thank you, and keep up the good work, and maybe mean old Jon Stewart will just be your monkey from now on.

Posted by mrbrent at 11:17 AM

November 3, 2004

a modest nonsense

[My response to a friend feeling bleak on this November 3:]

Bah.  Now is time to be of stout heart and good cheer.

I'm sure people a generation older than we are felt the same dispair when Nixon was reelected.  And we all know how that turned out.

We did not lose the fight.  In fact, now we got the bastard right where we want him.  There was no way we would let the fuckwit out of office before he paid for his crimes and misdemeanors.

We are the Radical Middle.  We will not shut up, we will not be discouraged.  We will continue to work for the common good, because that's what this effort was all about, and not winning some Dog & Pony show.

Today, it is easy to reel and mourn.  But the real victory, our real victory, is to join hands and dance in a circle and sing old Whitney Houston songs.  Like crazy people.

It is only our refusal to be victimized that will transform our protest into inevitibility.

Posted by mrbrent at 5:54 PM


For the record: I am not discouraged.

In fact, I am what you could call "ready to go".

Posted by mrbrent at 4:37 PM


I know a certain electorate that is going to be very very embarrassed once they start writing the history books.

No, really, electorate: have some.

Posted by mrbrent at 11:36 AM

November 2, 2004


Ten minutes after five PM, EST, and I'm already starting to crash.  Way too many informations streaming to try to grok/digest.  Here in the Dayjob Archipelago, the guarded optimism has broken and has been replaced with unmitigated optimism.  Accordingly, gloating is projected, but I'm going to scurry out of here before that sets in.

The news looks good and I've been optimistic from the get-go, but I've been hit in the side of the head with circumstance too many times for the good news to sway me just yet.

But just imagine what a Bush concession speech would look like, coming from a man programmed never to admit any failing whatsoever.  Pointing fingers, I assume.

Well, you know, if Bush ever loses anything.  Which he might, or might not.

But tonight, when you're raising your glass, don't forget to raise it for this man and his final regular column.  It'd be fitting.

And one final thought from Dr. Thompson: "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.  We will march on a road of bones."

Mahalo, indeed.

Posted by mrbrent at 5:13 PM

and now we dance

Everyone looked all serious on the subway this morning, and I couldn't figure out why?  Is it Ash Tuesday or something?

And airplane food.  Can someone explain that to me, please?

Annnd there's the segue!  (Which for years I thought was pronounced "seg", and therefor a "transition" was a "segue-way" -- silly me.)  Honestly, I think that people look grim and stunned on this Election Day because it's not always comfortable waking up and discovering that today is a Big Important Experience You Will Tell Your Children About.  Especially when there's no gift bag involved.

But everyone right now is out doing their thing, with posting the newsishness and driving the voters to the polls and phoning sleepy voters so they get the hell up, and I couldn't be more proud.  Millions of people (hence, no giftbags).  There's not really a precedent for it that I can think of, in terms of size and conviction. 

So let's vote the shit out of this thing, please.

Back to "work" now.

Posted by mrbrent at 10:34 AM

prediction: yer ma

I've noticed that other amateur writey sites have thrown down with their predictions for the election.  Not that I'm about to start posting photos of my cat, but, I don't wan't anyone to be able to call me a coward.  (Except for those of you who know for a fact that I am a coward.)

Prediction: the same as my prediction for the World Series.  I thought the Cards were the better team, but the Sox were more motivated.

And I know that we are more motivated.

I had said Sox in seven.  Turns out I was wrong.

Posted by mrbrent at 12:27 AM

November 1, 2004

lovin me the yahoo

More fun from the Yahoo Box O' Headlines:
• Nader still defiant on eve of U.S. election

Defiant?  Defiant like, "I will become President whether I'm elected or not"?

Also, apparently it's the U.S. election that's got him all bunched up this time, instead of the, uh, Canadian?  Polish?  Wait for it...

Also, who's Nader?  Didn't he bite it at the end of "Return of the Jedi"?

Posted by mrbrent at 5:48 PM

evil meets stupid

And now it's Monday, and it keeps getting funner and funner.  No doubt you've been keeping up on the multitude of random acts of vote supression occuring all over the country -- you really can't swing a dead cat here on the Internets without hitting one.

Thank goodness for the early voting -- more voting time equals more opportunities for bad people to do bad things and get caught on camera.  Like this  Also here, the home site of a writer who coined my favorite phrase of the morning, describing the Black Ops wing of BC 04: "When evil meets stupid".

Speaking of which: lookee hereThat wasn't predictable at all!  Hell, the way I heard it, OBL was going to give any Kerry voter ten dollahs and a backrub

Posted by mrbrent at 11:57 AM

October 31, 2004


I don't know if this was meant for public consumption, but a few weeks ago, I attended my first fundraiser, which included a speech from Al Gore.  Not everyone has a lot of respect for Al Gore (largely thanks to his Bill Buckner-ing of the election four years ago), but I think he's a God-damn genius, and maybe that he is more effective as a privite citizen/rabble rouser than he was as an office-holder.

I've read and listened to just about all of his speeches and editorials over the past year, but his speech started with a concept that I hadn't heard from him, and it was kind of a shock.

Before he started in on his very lucid list of sins of the Bush Administration, he said that this election was indeed one of the most important elections (now, more than ever), but not because of the horse-race between the candidates, or even because of any direct result of the election.  Gore said, and I'm paraphrasing, of course, that this election was important because it is a referendum on our own (the electorate's) ability to self-govern in our own best-interest.  Never before has an Administration so injurious to the welfare of the citizenry, and the world, remained so popular among voters.  Lost jobs, dead soldiers, eroded civil rights, big business plunder of national coffers, an unimaginable erasure of a surplus, and still a little less than half of Americans think that Bush is a "great maaaan".  We, as a nation, are offered the chance to ratify or reject -- which is the "really cool" aspect of our representative democracy -- these abuses of the national trust, and it is mystifyingly not a slam dunk.

Al Gore is right, and there is room for a landslide on Tuesday, and if there is not a landslide on Tuesday, it will not have been for lack of trying by those of us eager for the responsibility of our own self-governance.

Posted by mrbrent at 4:18 PM

some advice

It's time to bring back that "now, more than ever" trope.

I feel it got sullied a bit in those post 9-11 months, mostly by 1010 WINS.  And pundits.  And cheap advertising.

In fact, I think I might need a stiff drink tonight.

Now, more than ever.

Posted by mrbrent at 4:13 PM

scariest halloween evah

Happy Halloween, suckas.  Yeah, it's pretty spooky out there, and I'm not talking about the hipsters that clot my neighborhood.

Yesterday was the low anxiety day -- stay away from the Internets and the teevee news, play with the cat, read books.  But that was yesterday, and now it's the scariest seventy-two hours ever.

I am confident of the outcome, as I was in '96 (who wasn't?) and in '00 (ouch).  Maybe it is the height of naivete, but I believe that optimism is more helpful than pessimism, and that the electorate will be able to parse this whole good president/bad president equation before them.

And I see that those amateur writey types linked to the right of this are posting this afternoon like there's no tomorrow, so let's see if all this thought and attention can imminenize something of use on Tuesday.

Seventy-two hours of words, words, words -- offered up with the express purpose of redecorating the Oval Office in '05 so that we can try to get back to that long, national nightmare of peace and prosperity.

Posted by mrbrent at 3:24 PM