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Tuesday, Jul 26th

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Editorial

This Was The Year That Was … Great

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One year ago today we loaded up a borrowed truck for the last time and in the great tradition of The Grapes of Wrath and The Beverly Hillbillies, rolled on out towards a dream of a better life. The Joads struggled along Route 66 from Oklahoma’s dustbowl through California’s Mojave Desert to get to the Promised Land. Jed Clampett sold his oil-rich swamp in the Ozarks for 25 million and moved his family to the hills of Beverly. Our move wasn’t as difficult as the Joads' and certainly not as well subsidized as the Clampett’s. It took us 10 years to have the wherewithal to make the two and a half hour drive from our house in Seattle to our new home in Canada. Though we woke up in A New Country … we didn’t have the time to appreciate it for the first three months or so.

First we had to deal with schools that were going to start in a couple of weeks. Our son was going into the 6th grade and my wife was going to the University for her graduate degree. And we literally had an accumulated lifetime of boxes to unpack. All the nuts and bolts that held together our day-to-day lives had to be figured out and fast. Where are the schools? Where are the stores? Where do we get the car fixed? Where’s the library? Where’s everything? For the first time in my atheist life I welcomed guidance from above.

We had our cheap but trusty Tom Tom GPS to tell us how to get to where we wanted to go.
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Be Surprised if This One Surprises You

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Republicans have a real flair for being stupid, ignorant jerks -- and being proud of it.

If they weren't so tragically repugnant and repellently lethal to intelligent and sensitive thought and feeling, it might be suggested they were being kept around as humor relief -- a little something to help the adults take the edge off a hard day of dealing with facts and reality.

Not that many Democrats -- most notably Blue Dogs, perched to the right of Atilla the Hun and Count Dracula in the woeful lurch far, far right in this country -- are not themselves a lost cause for hope.  Within their group are plenty of spineless ditherers who couldn't corral a single, thoughtful decision amongst themselves even if that meant a simple vote to escape a burning building.

And, yes, the entire country in this 21st century is very much like a building set alarming ablaze -- with Republicans trying to hide the gas cans and matches behind their backs, along with somehow hiding their innocent-angel grins as well.

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Taking Heavy Fire from Bullet Points

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Sometimes, bullet points arrive on lists dressed to the nines, in full metal jackets, but hit home so hard, you'd swear those talking points were all being done by hollow points, and worse.

Or so you might think -- for people who still do, from time to time, think.

Sample clips of this ammunition:

*** The Romney tax plan flow chart, simplified for dummies:  If you earn more that $200,000, your taxes go down;  if you earn less than $200,000, your taxes go up.

You'd think that would be it, right there, show over -- but, no go:  we've blown through half a billion dollars in ad shouts and we're nowhere close to the media carpet-bombing that will signal the end-time in this eternal election cycle.  Makes you wonder what else could be done with this money, than shove around lies, bald lies, and partial truths.

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Starry-Eyed and Star-Crossed

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Roughly 77 years ago, a move was made to help all Americans -- help especially to those who were older, unlucky, unfortunate, and underage, find a little optimism in their thin soup.

August 14, 1935:  President Franklin Roosevelt signed Social Security into law.  It has become one of the country's most successful insurance and retirement programs.

No matter what Republicans might say, these are not entitlements because people have paid premiums into the system, just as they would any other insurance or retirement program.

Entitlements are more accurately defined as the unquestioned belief of elite One Percenters that only they should benefit from this country's vast wealth, the rock-solid presumption and world view only they deserve to do so.

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Hip Shots from the Lip

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Willard Romney can't seem to make up his mind about which foot it is he prefers in his mouth, constantly trying one, then the other.

Running mate Paul Ryan can't stop shooting from the hip, shooting off his lip, fatally winging any chance he ever had to be taken seriously by any sane adult whose brains still work somewhat close to spec.

Between one man's random ricochets off mistruths, and the other's routine taste-testing of his own feet, this is one heckuva team, Brownie.

It's just a matter of time before one of them panics, accidentally speaking truth, while the other finally accepts his limitations and hires out for more feet.

* * * * *

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Parties: Poopers & Crashers

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After a very difficult and demoralizing week, almost any unpaid blogger can bloom from a wallflower into the life of the party, if unleashed around free beer.

We're not an exclusive Mitt-style membership lingering societally at the country club.  Anyone can crash our party and loiter, so long as they don't receive compensation for anything they write online.  That was the rule, right from the start, to join this vagabond crew.

This may also be why all of us still aren't paid for our work after all these years:  We couldn't bear to leave the group.  It's as close as we work-from-home yahoos get to an actual work-therapy-social-support group.

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Batty, Bizarre & Beyond

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The universe was just beginning to repair the gash in reality, on our side of that invisible wound in time and space, from the previous -- initial -- incursion with that weird phenomena, our intersection with Bizarro Universe.

You'll remember the maiden voyage we all took, riding Saturday's shock waves of this strange situation in which a clot of inexplicable behaviors arrived all at once, seemingly triggered by -- or culminating in -- the announcement of Paul Ryan as a running mate for Willard Romney.

Scientists have struggled to explain, trace, and predict the cluster of effects that have become collectively known as having a brush with Bizarro -- Bifurcated, Infrared, Zeta-waved Arrhythmia, as Randomized in Rapid Oscillations -- Universe.

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