Archive for lincoln

President Obama, Please Proceed to Host Saturday Night Live ASAP

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Written by guest contributor, "hardybear" of the wonderful Free Range Talk site:

How to win back the liberal Liberal amorè of  '08 and  properly bitch-slap the Regressive Asshattery --- deliver one fell swoop of satire from Thirty Rock. Just picture it. A confident, relaxed Barack Obama takes the mic and croons a few bars of " I'm-m-m ... so fed up with you … killin' every damn thing the country needs me to do … it ain't nothin' but Boo-Hoo-Hoo … and not just from Bar-fly Bo(eh)ner ...

And is then joined by the dramatically back-lit, unprecedented musical host Fantasy Gaggle of Gaga, Bono, The Boss, Beyoncè,  Aretha, The (remaining) Beatles, Page & Plant, Jagger & Richards,  Madonna and Mister Wonder.

Web-snark gem 'Between Two Ferns' was a particular favorite of hipster Malia Obama, First Teen ... so when her Dad caved and delighted his daughters by being gamely swatted around by Zach Galifanekis, that whole 'Mom jeans' idiocy got returned to sender in A-lass-ka.

Cue Fvx News. Hair ablaze, the conservative punditry and media minions sang a scolding Greek chorus of 'The Dignity of the Office".  Are you effing kidding The Free World? You want to see undignified?  -- here you go --

TJBushmission-accomplished-ii

The president is going to the wall to get the message to we hard-headed People that healthcare insurance reform IS underway and there's a REAL deadline at the end of this month to enroll via the ACA. Maybe Republicans can spend their days blocking unemployment insurance and debating the degree of Lindsey Graham's ambiguous gay-hood, but President Dude has a day job!

Enjoy Lizz Winstead et al on Up with Steve Kornacki  and their comedic convo on the topic.

This just in from Variety Thursday: President Obama Defends Doing Funny or Die’s ‘Between Two Ferns’

ESPN Radio’s Colin Cowherd on Thursday asked Obama about criticism that Abraham Lincoln would not have stooped to such humor. Obama replied that “if you read back on Lincoln, he loved telling the occasional bawdy joke and being out among regular folk.” He added that “one of the hardest things about being president is being in this bubble that is artificial and unless you make a conscious effort, you start sounding like some Washington stiff.”

The Grumpy Old Geezer Party and middle-schooler Lipton Brigade canonized Über-Con Ron Ron,  a B movie actor who did standup with (genuine talent) Bob Hope -- but damn and deride a man of principle going to the mat of self-embarrassment as a Dad and a leader. One who actually gives a phuque about The People to reach out to the generation that's literally our future. 

Keep right on that flight plan, Regressive Republicans of Yore. Your bloated hypocritical underbelly is about as attractive to the future Makers as the thought of reverting to dial-up.

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The Book Booth: Valentine's Edition

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The Book Booth is a weekly feature at The Political Carnival, relating news, notes, and reflections from the world of books and publishing. SeattleDan, along with his wife, SeattleTammy, are operators of both an on-line bookstore, as well a brick and mortar in small town Washington State. Both have been in the book business since shortly after the Creation, or close to 6000 years now.

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As I learned earlier this week, Valentine was sainted in AD 496 by
Pope Gelasius 1. Virtually nothing is known of him, other than he was
martyred on February 14 in 314. But somehow, that seems appropriate,
for who does know the mysteries of love?

Literature is replete with the stuff of love. Flavorwire had its top
25 great love affairs
. Be sure to check out number 8, which has the
Alan Ladd movie tie-in cover art for The Great Gatsby. If that doesn't
make you want to read it, I don't know what will.

Of course, nothing says I Love You like having it eternally etched
into your skin. BuzzFeed featured some "epic" literary tattoos here.

And book lovers suffer more than the world can understand. HuffPo

featured eleven "conundrums" that only we are aware of.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/10/book-lover_n_4562002.html?ir=Books

Not all love affairs endure. In fact, some writers are bold enough to
avenge themselves through their writings. MentalFloss shared some of
these misguided relationships here.

For whatever reason, love has often been linked to war. I suppose it
shouldn't be remarkable, if we remember the Greek god of war Ares was
the brother of the goddess of love, Aphrodite. In any event,
Publishers Weekly recently discussed ten of the best contemporary war
novels here.

If you are between books and wondering what to read, you might want to
check out Kim Stanley Robinson's discussion of three science fiction
novels with modernist overtones
.

Or if you are feeling more ambitious, one the librarians from the New
York Public Library offered up 25 books that changed the world. A
list, by the way, not everyone loved; check out the comments below the article.

A new offering in historical fiction comes from the author of
Fatherland, Robert Harris, who has just had published his take on the
affair Dreyfus, An Officer and a Spy. The Wall Street Journal examined
it here.

There has been something of a dust up this week when Penguin Books
India has decided to pulp religious historian Wendy Doniger's The
Hindus: An Alternate History. Doniger has long been a professor at the
University of Chicago and is well respected in the field. Of course,
she's none too happy. Story here.

Penguin Books India defended their decision here.

Finally, I wanted to share this very insightful essay from George
Packer in the New Yorker on the history of Amazon and its impact on
books and book selling. If you read no other links from today's post,
read this one.

I hope everyone enjoyed their Valentines Day with someone or something
you love. And I'd be remiss if I didn't point out that Monday is
Presidents Day. Ah, I remember the days when we got two days off from
school for both Washington and Lincoln's birthdays. Those days are
long gone. I shall spend Monday contemplating the presidential term of
the long-neglected William Henry Harrison.

Let us know what books you're enjoying this long weekend!

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What Do JFK And King Tut Have In Common? Life After Death

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JFK assassination photo

JFK is the gift that keeps on giving. There's more Kennedy conspiracy theories than Rand Paul excuses for plagiarism. And interestingly as time marches on, the theories get even more and more convoluted. Reelz Channel the other night, in a special called JFK: The Smoking Gun determined that there was a second shooter in the assassination. But it wasn't someone on the grassy knoll.

It was George Hickey, a Secret Service agent riding in the car behind Kennedy. Reelz claims Hickey panicked and a gun he was unfamiliar with accidentally discharged, hitting and actually killing Kennedy. Supposedly he was rushing to restrain Jackie Kennedy when this happened.

Wow. Here's the trailer:

Now, I'm certainly not casting any aspersions on Reelz or anyone else who wants to believe in conspiracies and revisions to history. Especially if their versions are true. That's the interesting part of life -- finding out things you believe for years are not always as they appeared to be.

This time, I'm not so sure. But this was a big week for new revelations on historical mythology.

Joining JFK this week with new revelations on their demise is the ever popular King Tut. It seems scientists this week have come up with a real coffin burner.

Time Magazine:

Working together with car-crash investigators, a team of British scientists says that the legendary pharaoh Tutankhamen died after being run over by a chariot while on his knees.

Well, aren't we lucky. Both deaths have warranted documentaries. Okay. But who's is more interesting? Before you decide, you have to know this about King Tut. His mystery didn't stop with his being laid to rest. Oh, no. the young pharaoh had to outdo the Kennedy myths.

spontaneous combustion

The new findings, which also include an explanation as to why the remains of the Egyptian king were burnt, will be presented in a documentary that airs in the U.K. on Sunday, the Independent reports.

Studying a piece of Tutankhamen’s preserved flesh, the team found that the body spontaneously combusted while sealed inside its coffin, a chemical reaction between embalming fluids and linen that resulted from a botched mummification.

Holy Smokes!!! Spontaneously combusted?

Is this really science or just a new way to sell an old story? A PR person's wet dream. I don't know, but I can't wait to see what's next. Add these two stories to the movie about Abe Lincoln being a Vampire Hunter and perhaps anything's possible.

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Budget War or Civil War -- A GOP Confederate Ruse

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GettysburgThere's a growing, no, make that a festering train of thought chugging down the rails in this cynic's mind. It's called distraction and Reconstruction. It has to do with this funding battle raging in Washington. Is this all really a distraction -- something to erase our recent memories of the Republican party's attacks on our domestic rights? Things like immigration, the EPA, voter's rights, women's rights, fracking, big Wall Street regulations, Food Stamps, and subsidies to GOP's favorite charity, oil.

Referring to a recent article on The Hill:

Six months after the Republican National Committee (RNC) issued a post-election blueprint for rebooting the party and reaching new voters, top Republicans are worried their party is failing to meet its goals.

Party strategists and a number of Republican lawmakers are concerned about fallout from the GOP’s handling of the government shutdown, public infighting between lawmakers, attempts to reach out to female and minority voters and an overall lack of a positive vision for the country.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) warned that the GOP was “taking our eye off the ball” by failing to focus on boosting appeal with Hispanics, young voters and women — groups that voted strongly Democratic in 2012.

When your post-national election report card says you're failing in so many areas, how do you start things over, level the playing field and even force an advantage? You start a war. A form of distraction which unites the people and if you win, you gain more control. If you lose, people are so busy talking about the fight and battle that they forget all of the other issues that were derisive before the war. And then you can start Reconstruction.

Reconstruction

But starting a war is risky. A recent Talking Points Meme by Tom Kludt put it rather illustratively:

A Republican congressman drew parallels between the government shutdown and one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War, saying Thursday that the GOP has "found itself embroiled in battle on a battlefield it didn't intend to be on."

"I would liken this a little bit to Gettysburg, where a Confederate unit went looking for shoes and stumbled into Union cavalry, and all of a sudden found itself embroiled in battle on a battlefield it didn't intend to be on, and everybody just kept feeding troops into it," the congressman said. "That's basically what's happening now in a political sense. This isn't exactly the fight I think Republicans wanted to have, certainly that the leadership wanted to have, but it's the fight that's here."

In this parallel, change shoes to Obamacare and the battle to the government shutdown. All that's left is the surrender at Appomattox which will be the debt ceiling. Then General Robert E. Cruz will be lost to the ages along with his deputy, Colonel Beauregard Boehner and Reconstruction under Abraham Obama will begin.

Reconstruction 2 rebuilding

At least that's the projection as the story is going along so far. Not exactly Tom Clancy or Bruce Catton, but it's pretty close.

It's an interesting ruse these Republicans are running. And we're seeing signs of it already. Who's talking about civil rights? Who's talking about women's issues. Who's talking about gun control or voter rights? Who's talking about clean air and water? Who's talking about immigration? Or fracking, for "fracking" sake?

This war is about distraction from those issues and consolidation into one battle -- one the Tea Party wing of the GOP has produced.

Fortunately, it didn't work for the Confederate South at Gettysburg. What we have to hope is now is that, 150 or so years later, the South doesn't rise again -- God help all of us all if it does.

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Bonus Cartoon of the Day- Oscar Picks of 2013

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oscar13

Via.

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