Archive for snarkage

"What Obama needs is a Rob Ford, Francois Hollande moment."

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La Cucaracha blame ObamaVia Lalo Alcaraz

Another snark-filled guest post by the one, the only Will Durst, who's having a little fun with the GOP's Obama Derangement Syndrome. Take it away, Will:

STUCK ON STUCK

“Just following the will of the people.” That’s been the GOP rationalization for accomplishing absolutely nothing for five and a half years. Doesn’t matter what the issue is. Immigration. Jobs. Infrastructure. Climate change. Banking reform. The proliferation of substandard dental schools in Nebraska.

According to them, the people want… zip. Zero. Zilch. Nada. And to mask their inaction, Republicans have coordinated a feeding frenzy that would make rabid hyenas jealous.

Something about Obama drives them crazier than chocolate banana fritters with raspberry sprinkles in a bento box. Maybe because he’s the smartest guy in the room and not the least bit shy about sharing that opinion. Maybe he’s the ultimate anti- Bush. Or there’s something about him that looks different. Extremely different. Could be the ears.

What it boils down to is… “Open Season on Obama.” The memos have circulated. The strategy is conspicuous. To derail any possible presidential accomplishment by stalling progress and tossing a continuous slew of dastardly insults onto and at his person. And the mud is flying faster than fingers in a steno pool. Different circus. Same clowns.

John Boehner plans to sue the President. For what? Not even he knows, but you can be sure, the term “smarty pants” will be bandied about. He did drop some tidbit about objecting to the President changing the employer mandate to Obama Care, but that can’t be the source of his irritation, since the GOP insisted on it. It would be like slapping some other family’s child for obeying you.

Dick Cheney called him the Worst President of his lifetime. Which is quite a coincidence, since many argue Dick Cheney was the worst president of Obama’s lifetime. Obama should actually take solace from this charge, since Dick Cheney has been pretty much wrong about pretty much everything since at least 1999.

Sarah Palin called for the POTUS to be impeached. And Sarah Palin demanding punishment of someone for not properly fulfilling an office is another of those “pot with the kettle and the color black” situations the Republicans are so renown. The needle on the irony meter just crazy spun then melted.

Rick Perry accused the President of orchestrating the conspiracy responsible for a deluge of Central American kids crossing the border. And he said it while wearing his new studious looking glasses, so you know he’s serious. Also, the fact he correctly pronounced the word “conspiracy,” is a huge upgrade.

These attacks are perfectly timed to kick the President while he’s down. Right now his approval rating has sunk lower than scorpion- infested, throw- pillows filled with mold spores. Like a tray of hickory smoked baby back ribs at a PETA convention. Tacks in a bath. What Obama needs is a Rob Ford, Francois Hollande moment. A video of him naked, smoking crack with Lindsay Lohan, to go viral.

Republicans even complain Obama is a do- nothing President. With Mitch McConnell stalling every advance in the Senate and the House and Supreme Court lined up against him, it’s a miracle they’re able to get Flag Day commemorations through Congress.

Makes a person worry this political paralysis may be the new normal and we’ll never be able to affect positive change ever again. Instead of the status quo, we got the status no. America has gotten stuck… on stuck.

Copyright ©2014, Will Durst. Will Durst is an award- winning, nationally acclaimed political comic. Go to willdurst.com to find about more about the new documentary film “3 Still Standing,” and a calendar guide to personal appearances including his new one- man show “BoomeRaging: From LSD to OMG.”

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"Online privacy is like Taliban science. A fictional concept."

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Another snark-filled guest post by the one, the only Will Durst, who's having a little fun with online privacy in general, and Facebook in particular. Take it away, Will:

DIGITAL CHEESE

Plenty of people had good reason to be in a foul mood back in 2012. The Detroit Tigers. Members of the Romney family. And, after making the acquaintance of a windy lass named Sandy, most of New England. Now, we can add to that list the thousands of suckers who were manipulated by our good friend at Facebook. Although the word they coined- “unfriend,” might fit better here.

Recently it was revealed the social media behemoth filtered the messages of 700,000 users by flooding them with uplifting and/ or depressing posts, then monitoring who got happy and who got sad. “Oh no. Grandma’s bicycle got run over by a garbage truck. Awww. But hey! Watch what happens when this pit bull chews on a kiddie pool.”

They say we agreed to this kind of BS when we signed on, but- come on. Its doubtful even the employees who write them, read those user agreements. Typically, they’re longer than the migratory path of the monarch butterfly, more confusing than Cantonese crosswords and displayed in flea font.

Corporate lawyers didn’t evolve from mud- sucking, bottom- feeders for nothing. They know how to hide all sorts of stuff in that fine print. Wouldn’t be surprised to discover there’s a clause stating that in time of war, they own one of my kidneys. And another that gives them the right to call at any time of night demanding help in moving a body.

Google also admits to running 20,000 experiments on its search results every year and you can bet Twitter, Amazon, Pinterest and Crabgrass.com are doing the same. Probably even Yahoo has scientists using tools calibrated back in the 90s. The 1890s.

Some bloggers claim to be outraged, but anybody not expecting to be pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed and numbered is probably a big fan of the tooth fairy and still drinking juice out of a sippy cup, wearing footy pajamas. Online privacy is like Taliban science. A fictional concept.

Think of it as Newton’s Law 3.1. The price we must pay for having the world at our fingertips, is maintaining an equal and opposite availability to everyone else’s fingertips. Some of which are cold and clammy. Especially the Faceless ones with the chromium digits. But we’ve adapted. You don’t hear a lot of noise about folks going back to MySpace. Or Compuserve.

Facebook claims they’re simply trying to create the best environment possible for their petri dish of social contact. And we microbes can expect the research to not only continue, but get more sophisticated. Won’t be long before they are able to predict which of our family members will pass out before Thanksgiving Dinner. Which could come in handy with menu planning.

Our best bet is to nudge them in consumer friendly directions. Don’t they want to know how many people would delete their accounts after all cute cat videos were outlawed? How about a “Bummer” button for deaths, divorces, debacles, disasters and defeats?

The thing is, if Mark Zuckerberg and his ilk are going to use us as lab rats, the least they could do is throw us some minor rewards. When rats finish a maze, aren’t they supposed to get cheese? Hey Zuck, where’s our digital cheese? Make mine Cheddar. Swiss puts me in a bad mood. Ooops. Shouldn’t have said that.

Copyright ©2014, Will Durst. Will Durst is an award- winning, nationally acclaimed political comic. Go to willdurst.com to find about more about the new documentary film “3 Still Standing,” and a calendar guide to personal appearances including his new one- man show “BoomeRaging: From LSD to OMG,” at the Santa Cruz Fringe Festival July 10- 19. Scfringe.com.

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"Happy 238th birthday America. In the right light, you don’t look a day over 189."

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Happy birthday America july 4th animated gif

Another snark-filled guest post by the one, the only Will Durst, who's having a little fun with America celebrating its birthday, the the Fourth of July, aka Independence Day. Take it away, Will:

DEAD SOLID SUMMER

Here’s hoping your Independence Day was beyond terrific. You have to love the loudest and most American of all holidays. One of the moments that makes a person prouder than papaya punch to be a citizen of this fine country. The greatest country on the planet, which is why we have all those darn problems with our borders. After all, you don’t see a lot of stories about the teeming humanity streaming across the border into Kazakhstan. Or Kyrgyzstan. Which many experts claim are two entirely different countries.

The Summer Solstice may have checked in weeks ago, but the 4th of July is still dead solid summer. It means baseball and hot dogs and picnics and suntan lotion and ice cream trucks and road trips in the back of a station wagon bouncing around like fleshy pinballs, begging Dad to turn up the air conditioning and screw the gas mileage.

The Durst household is used to celebrating this noisy and sweaty occasion by intensely charring immense amounts of flesh, both ours and assorted animals, then drinking a cooler full of brewskies while shooting off firecrackers. That’s right, we drink beer and handle explosives, which explains why the 4th christens many nicknames like “Lefty” and “Patch.”

No matter what side of the political spectrum your team plays on, this is a non- partisan party. Hippies and hawks both exercise their freedoms by flipping Frisbees and firing up the grill although it’s a lot easier to keep a rack of baby backs from slipping through the grates than bean sprouts.

Hard to think of a snapshot of the USA more iconic than a small town 4th of July parade with kids stringing bunting in their bicycles spokes and streamers doing their streaming thing from the handlebars. Where tricycles and Big Wheels careen between crawling convertibles containing beauty queens waving with one hand and holding tight their tiaras with the other. Where hardware stores sponsor floats and politicians are booed.

Speaking of which, 4th of July also signals the apex of the marching band season. Good marching bands and bad marching bands. A difference which is razor thin. These poor people practice all year long and get one lousy day. Seriously, how many John Phillip Sousa albums do you own?

Even in San Francisco, we do the red white and blue thing so big and bad, the ghost of Patrick Henry slaps us imaginary high fives. It’s the perfect time to forget the troubles facing this nation and concentrate on the good things. Food, family, friends and fireworks. Although 9 times out of 10 our light displays get lost in the fog. Instead of “ooh” and “aahh,” we get “hunh?” and “what?”

So get your summer licks in. Buy a new bathing suit. Fly a flag. Wear white shoes. Eat a roasted cob of corn and let the butter slide right down your arm and drip off your elbow. Snore in a hammock. And blow some stuff up real goooood. Because it won’t be long before we’re stuffing the flip- flops back in the closet and hauling out the school backpacks and pumpkin carving kits. Happy 238th birthday America. And you should know, in the right light, you don’t look a day over 189.

Copyright ©2014, Will Durst. Will Durst is an award- winning, nationally acclaimed political comic. Go to willdurst.com to find about more about the new documentary film “3 Still Standing,” and a calendar guide to personal appearances including his new one- man show “BoomeRaging: From LSD to OMG,” at the Santa Cruz Fringe Festival July 10- 19.

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"If you want intimidating, how 'bout 'the Washington Lobbyists'" for football team?

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george carlin baseball v football Washington team

Another snark-filled guest post by the one, the only Will Durst, who's having a little fun with the Washington football team name controversy. Take it away, Will:

THE WASHINGTON TREATY BREAKERS

You don’t hear much about the US Patent & Trademark Office. And that, my friends, is a good thing. Usually this federal office is as controversial as parsley wrapped celery. On a 1- 10 scale of boring, patent law has to rate about a 3,000. That’s normally. But today this obscure agency has thrown football fans into raging fits. Real football. Where guys in helmets use their hands to throw or carry some spheroid object. Not faux football, where athletes direct a round ball with their feet.

In a 2- 1 ruling, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board stripped the Washington Redskins of six trademark registrations after concluding the football team’s name was disparaging to Native Americans, and thus in violation of laws banning offensive language. Although to many Americans it’s the locational part of the name that is most repugnant. Especially those Americans known to party with cups of tea.

The USPTO made a similar ruling back in 1999, but it was overturned, and may very well be again. Because as we all know, the government is fond of doing the same thing over and over and over again. Expecting different results.

Conservatives fear this kind of political correctness will snowball, causing many nicknames to be spurned. For instance: should the Pittsburgh Pirates be compelled to switch their name because it’s offensive to families who have been pillaged? The Green Bay Packers due to folks harboring nightmares concerning broken lamps? The commissioners could forestall this movement by declaring all sports teams be named after marsupials.

What about the Fighting Irish? Does anybody really think that drunken Leprechauns with fists cocked are responsible role models for today’s university students? The Utah Jazz is an odious appellation to anybody possessing a modicum of musical taste. And the name of the state of Oklahoma is Choctaw for red people. Should they be forced to repeal their name or can we just get rid of the state altogether?

How about individuals? Doesn’t the same logic mandate that anybody named Manson or Hitler alter their name so as not to remind victims’ relatives of their grisly crimes? Adolf? Charlie? What about Bush? Clinton? Kardashian?

And if Daniel Snyder, the owner of the 3rd most valuable NFL franchise, according to Forbes Magazine, does cave to the rising cries of boycott, which direction will he head? Reportedly, the team has already filed for the trademark of Washington Warriors, but that doesn’t really distill the essence of the town. The Senators won’t work. Baseball tried and it depressed the players so much the team was forced to move. Twice.

He could capture the true spirit of the town with… the Washington Slippery Slopes. The Ethical Sliders. Corrupters. Prevaricators. The Hogs works and even has sentimental ties.

If you want intimidating, how 'bout the Washington Lobbyists? The Patent Lawyers. Under Secretaries. The Filibusterers. The Kickbacks has a vague football feel. The Mindless Horde. The Red Inks wouldn’t necessitate the need to buy new letters for the stadium exterior.

But, if honoring the proud indigenous nations of America is, as the team claims, the actual goal, how about the Washington Treaty Breakers. Or the Plague Blankets- which is pretty damn scary. And finally, to keep the natural rivalry with the Dallas Cowboys intact- the Washington Barbed Wires.

Copyright ©2014, Will Durst. Will Durst is an award- winning, nationally acclaimed political comic. Go to willdurst.com to find about more about the new documentary film “3 Still Standing,” and a calendar guide to personal appearances including his new one- man show “BoomeRaging: From LSD to OMG,” at the Coastal Rep in Half Moon Bay on July 5th & 6th and being Grand Marshall in the Half Moon Bay 4th of July parade.

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A birthday card with a conscience

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climate change Jack and Jill birthday card

The other day I was at Tarjay (Yes, that's how Target is actually pronounced, duh.) looking for the perfect birthday card for my BFF. There were the usually cheesy ones, bad-jokey ones, embarrassingly trying-to-be-sexy ones, heartfelt ones, and of course, annoyingly loud, computer-chippy ones. Then, suddenly, without warning, just as I was about to throw up my hands in defeat and give her a Post-It Note decorated with glitter and dried macaroni, I came upon a birthday card with...

... a conscience!

jiminy cricket conscience

Imagine my surprise when I was suddenly greeted by a politically astute, like-minded birthday card. It made my lefty liberal Progressive commie heart get all a-fluttery. I got light-headed. I reached for my smelling salts and scanned the area for a fainting couch (on sale, of course, I'm no fool), but alas, there was none.

So I summoned up all my strength, shook off my initial dumbfounditude, whipped out my trusty iPhone (I'm happy to report that it has nearly recovered from that brief but damaging dip in the toidy), and snapped this image to document the moment. And what a moment it was:

 

birthday card climate change

For those whose eyes are as bad as mine, it says:

It's your birthday, and you're another year older. It could be worse. You could be an endangered polar bear trapped on a melting ice cap as global warming destroys your habitat and the gluttonous fishing industry depletes your only food source.

So celebrate. It's not like you're on the brink of extinction.

... Yet.

Holy Stromboli, it's as if I wrote that birthday card my very own self!

Nothing like an informed, articulate, enlightening French gay Kenyan Marxist pinko socialist birthday card to brighten one's day.

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Cantor Eats Crow, brought to you by "the Redneck Taliban"

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cantor eats crow

Another snark-filled guest post by the one, the only Will Durst, who's having a little fun with Eric Cantor's stunningly humiliating defeat. Or as Will calls it, "feeding the beast that ends up devouring you." Speaking of devouring, with his usual snark, Durst does just that to the paraphrased headlines "Cantor Eats Crow." And speaking of eating, welcome to another episode of Republicans Eating Their Own. Take it away, Will:

CROW MEDIUM RARE

A massive Earthquake rolled through the Republican Establishment after Eric Cantor became the 1st sitting House Majority Leader to lose in a primary since, well… ever. Going back to 1899, the 19th Century. Back when Mugwumps bought buggy whips and the Emperor of Russian lunched with the Viceroy of India.

In terms of wake up calls for GOP incumbents, this elbow to the ribs from the right is the equivalent of having your alarm clock replaced by a battalion of Taiko drummers. In the hold of a container ship. With Marshall amps pinning the red and the reverb switched to infinity sustain.

GOP insiders offered a number of theories for the upset. Bad polling. Disconnection with base. Low voter turnout. Democrats in an open primary. Ambition the size of Montana. Didn’t get as many votes as the other guy. Butterfly ballots. Michelle Obama. The World Cup. Approaching El Nino.

But mostly: back when he was midwifing their birth in 2009, Cantor was considered very very Tea Party. Now, not so much. Classic case of feeding the beast that ends up devouring you. Kind of a Siegfried and Roy sort of thing. “Eric Cantor the RINO.” You got to admit: that’s pretty humorous. Like saying… Dick Cheney the Peacenik or Colonel Sanders the vegan.

Let this be a lesson to all squishy moderates out there: the Tea Party has the same tolerance for tolerance that SWAT teams have for swatting. The Redneck Taliban. Though responsible for scuttling the Boehner/ Obama Grand Bargain and fanning the flames of the government shutdown, Cantor might have read the word “compromise” in a book once. And that is unacceptable.

Don’t you get it? That anti- colonial socialist Obama is ruining the country and if you don’t think so, you don’t love America enough and can go back to Europe and eat crescent rolls on your 6 week vacation.

The man who would be Speaker lost his 7th District Virginia Congressional seat by 11 points to Dave Brat, a doctor of economics who teaches at Randolph- Macon College in Ashland Virginia, a private Methodist liberal arts college 92 miles from the US Capitol. And who, in November’s general election, will be facing a Democrat named Jack Trammell, a doctor who teaches sociology at Randolph- Macon College in Ashland Virginia. Guess you could call their upcoming debates a partial Randolph- Macon College faculty retreat.

The New York Times calculated Cantor spent more money at steakhouses than Brat raised for his whole campaign. But that is simply not true. Cantor only spent $168,000 at various DC meat palaces while Brat raised close to $200,000. So, the Congressman only spent 17/20th on scorched cow flesh compared to what Brat raised. The irony is, now, all Eric Cantor gets to eat is crow.

Of course Brat only used $123,000 of that two hundred grand in his campaign, which gets us to the Times claim, but that’s nitpicking. Nitpicking, being a grand Washington hobby, which Cantor might want to pick up, seeing as he has some unexpected free time on his hands.

Who knows what the future holds for John Boehner’s former go- to- guy. Cantor could become a lobbyist or a consultant. He might even want to write a paper on climate change. After all, who else could provide such a first hand eyewitness account… of hell freezing over?

Will Durst is an award- winning, nationally acclaimed political comic. Go to willdurst.com to find about more about his new one- man show “BoomeRaging: From LSD to OMG,” info about the documentary film “3 Still Standing,” and a calendar guide to personal appearances including June 20 & 21 in Winters & San Rafael.

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Zombified: We Phone Zombies are developing the attention span of high-speed lint. And the personalities.

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phone zombies

Image via

Another snark-filled guest post by the one, the only Will Durst, who's having a little fun with our addiction to our electronic devices. Or as Will calls us, Phone Zombies. Take it away, Will:

ZOMBIFIED

You see them staggering down our streets, heads bowed as if in prayer making the occasional grunting noise. Mindless drooling de-animated human husks walking blindly into fountains, crosswalks and lamp posts. Wake up People. We are in the middle of a science fiction movie here. Welcome to the Invasion of the Phone Zombies.

Yes, the Zombie Apocalypse has materialized and we are it. Everywhere you look you find the deathlike trance-frozen faces of we necromantic slaves with twitching fingers. Spending endless empty hours mesmerized by our tiny screens. An entire society that can’t remember its own phone number, much less that of any significant other. Of course, compared to our magical phones, there are no significant others.

Our smart phones are being manipulated by some very dumb people. Sure, amazing things can be accomplished: check the weather patterns in Outer Mongolia. Translate French past participles into Farsi. Order a chess set made out of imitation crab meat in the shape of the characters from 12 Years a Slave and have it delivered to our house before getting back from work. But in the meantime, we are developing the attention span of high-speed lint. And the personalities.

The contagion has spread everywhere. Stall zombies in public rest rooms that hog the enclosed sanctum to play a quick round of Fruit Ninja. Or two. Nightlife zombies who ignore the jokes onstage so they can respond with multiple LOLs on their electronic leash. Tangentially ambulatory zombies who get into their car but refuse to leave parking spots until checking in with High Command. Vacation zombies who spend thousands of dollars to stare at their phones in distant exotic lands.

And we zombies have proved desperate to swell our ranks. Zombifying others via slide presentations of cute cats cavorting. Even attempting to recruit potential zombie converts through such subhuman treatment as incessant shame and humiliation. “Seriously. That’s your phone? Who made it: Daewoo? Is that the fabled rotary cell phone? Must be neat to have Teddy Roosevelt on your speed dial. Bet your roaming charges are huge. Play much ‘snake’ lately?”

While our forefingers develop biceps and our thumbs evolve to the size of zucchini, society continues its deep deterioration. Groups of friends who have lost the will to converse, huddling together solely for warmth and light. Drivers staring into their laps, their faces reflecting an eerie glow. Entire families walking past each other hypnotized by their devices, going days without engaging in any major argument.

Dealing with the chronically anesthetized is exhausting. Who hasn’t tired of politely turning after being addressed only to find it’s some zombie in a suit on a Bluetooth talking to himself? But the worst are the suited Bluetoothed elevator zombies. Shut your piehole dirtwipe. Nobody here cares to know how many units need to be transferred to Topeka by Wednesday; we would pay good money to see some Topeka stuffed up your unit today.

In order to contain this pandemic, the CDC should issue a directive that encourages the unzombified to punch Bluetoothed elevator zombies right in their ear. Hard. Multiple times. And when the stupefied ones wake from their narcoleptic slumber and turn with confused expressions, inform them that it was all in the interest of the greater good. A blow for the sake of civilization itself.

Will Durst is an award- winning, nationally acclaimed political comic. Go to willdurst.com to find about more about his new one- man show “BoomeRaging: From LSD to OMG,” info about the documentary film “3 Still Standing,” and a calendar guide to personal appearances including June 13 & 14 in Arcata & Redway.

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