Friday, July 19, 2019

The Friday Link for 7/19/19

For this Friday's Link, let's start with Apollo 11.

There was a time in this country when science was praised and appreciated.  Not today.  There's no way on the planet the current US government would spend the money needed for a moon launch, let alone listen to the scientists who would be responsible to make sure the mission happens safely.  It's an interesting question:  would a Republican have a harder time with the cost of a space launch, or having to respect a scientist?

Why is science important?  This video says it all.  Think about the levels of science needed just for this slowed down 30 second clip.  The reason we can look back on Apollo 11 with such pride is due to what it meant beyond getting humans to the moon.  It represents the time when science and intelligence were valued, and by giving them value, nothing was impossible.  Enjoy this video of the science behind the launch.

Since we are on science, how about a great video showing the distance of the solar system.  If you go to Eau Claire Wisconsin, there is a walking path which shows you the distance from the sun to all the planets.  You realize how the outer planers of Uranus, Neptune and Pluto (sorry, not sorry) are an insane distance from us and the sun.  These guys put it in perspective for you without you having to go to Wisconsin.

And to put our science Friday Link to bed, what's more science than the Coneheads on Family Feud.  A classic SNL skit.

Have a great weekend everyone!  Try to stay cool.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

What Does It Take

Back in the first decade of the 2000's, I cancelled my Star Tribune newspaper subscription.  The Strib, like most newspapers, had become a hollow shell of its former self, with less and less news content.  They had also become a right leaning paper.  I'm not talking about the editorial page (I'll come back to that) but rather the stories themselves had become unapologetically Republican.  A Democratic politician would do something wrong, and it was top of the front page, above the fold, with three weeks of team coverage, but a Republican politician doing something far worse would be buried deep in the B section, with the reporters and editors themselves making excuses for why they didn't feel the story warranted more coverage.

The reason the mainstream media in this country (mainly regional newspapers and local network television stations) shifted dramatically to a more pro-Republican perspective is due to two things.  Right wing business people were buying up media in the 1990's, closing newsrooms, gutting news staff and pretty much annihilating investigative journalism.  This got rid of quality content, replaced with a shocking amount of GOP talking points reported as 'news.'

The other way the right controlled the news came in the form of advertisers.  Far right wing businesses would advertise, but only if the news reflected their values.  With editors far more obliged to do what the sales department demanded, they drove the news media's direction to the right, ensuring they'd be able to make a buck.

The final straw for me, in regards to the Star Tribune, was a stretch of four weeks of Sundays about 15 years ago.  For those four weeks, the Sunday Editorial section was all FAR right wing garbage, easily disproven lies which mysteriously weren't fact checked by the Strib's editorial board.  All the major editorials in those Sunday newspapers were unforgivable partisan drivel; GOP talking points given validity by the paper.

After the 4th week, I called the paper and asked if this was the new standard.  The perky customer service rep insisted it was okay because the Democrats were allowed to respond in the Monday edition of the paper. Considering the Sunday edition of the paper was read by somewhere in the area of 2.5 to 3 times more people than the Monday paper, this was an admission by the paper their were trying to drive a narrative.  Thanks, but no thanks.

(For the record, today I do have an digital subscription for work, mainly for sports)

For those who think the news media stopped moving towards the right when Obama became President, think again.  They got worse.  I remember when I caught the Strib publishing a 'letter to the editor' from a CEO from a major banking group in town.  They never once identified the banker for his obvious ulterior motives, instead portraying him as a regular guy who happened to drop a letter in the mail.  If I were to write a letter to the editor and try to pass it off as 'Matt from Hopkins,' there's no way the paper would publish it without making sure everyone knew it's the liberal radio host in town.  Heck, let's be honest, they would've never published it period.

I started noticing the comical crowd size double standard in the Twin Cities news media about 10 years ago.  A right wing political event would happen and the coverage was "large crowds, big turnout, more than expected rallied."  The media was usually exaggerating about 100 right leaning people OR LESS.  Sometimes it was just a few dozen rightos.  In the case of the pro-Confederate flag rally, it was six!  No matter the turnout, a right wing rally or event was always a rousing success!  But when a few thousand people would show up for a liberal event, the narrative was "less than expected, smaller crowds, and unknown number of protesters."  Many times the news media wouldn't even cover a liberal rally or event at all.

The best example of this was Scott Walker coming to Hudson, Wisconsin for a rally.  Twenty three people showed up to support Walker.  23!!!  Meanwhile, well over 200 people came to protest Walker.  The Twin Cities news media reported the complete opposite, "big turnout for Walker!"  I think KARE 11 was the ONLY station to mention the protesters, as an afterthought; "a counter protest also took place."

Where the news media in this town is at today is VERY scary.  Over the last few years, there have been multiple stories which are UNDENIABLY NEWS, stories which made Republicans look bad, not intentionally but factually.  Considering the positions of power and places where these stories occurred, the news relevance was clear.

  • Former Republican Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt had his credit card debt forgiven (a rare feat in this day and age) and the legal team which helped him with his mysterious debt forgiveness had a lobbying wing in St. Paul.
  • Republicans told North Minneapolis' predominantly African American population they were on their own after a tornado hit their community; how they needed to pull themselves up by their own boot straps.  They never seemed to have a problem with emergency tornado relief before the inner city strike.
  • Representative Jim Newberger  made a racist comment on the Minnesota House floor, targeting the predominately African American population in North Minneapolis.
  • Republicans called a man to testify that he'd stolen months and months of food assistance, just to prove a millionaire could abuse the system.  No one verified the forms he filled out for attaining the food assistance, to ensure he wasn't lying (hence a crime).  No journalist asked why the Republicans were suddenly embracing fraud.
  • While the media did cover the accusations of sexual misconduct against former Rep. Tony Cornish, they were shockingly silent when a disgraced Cornish returned to the Capitol a few months after being forced to resign, seemingly there to threaten and intimidate the former Democratic Representative Erin May Quade, who had initially accused him of inappropriate harassment.  
  • GOP candidate for Attorney General Doug Wardlow was accused by multiple former classmates of being an extreme bully while in high school.  After Wardlow challenged the accusations, more classmates came forward with more stories of extreme bullying.
  • Republican representative Cal Bahr called for violence against Democratic Legislators who were writing common sense gun regulations.  He called for them to be thrown to the curb, stomped on, and then run over a few times.  He made these threats in the Capitol itself.  His excuse was he was only talking about the bills, not the people writing them.  That excuse is counterpointed by the video showing him CLEARLY making the threats to the politicians themselves.
  • Republican Representative Tony Jergens, throwing a temper tantrum after an amendment failed in the Minnesota House, verbally and physically threatened Democratic Representative Jamie Becker-Finn in the House annex.  It was a loud threat, heard throughout the House, and reports stated Jergens had to be physically restrained.
Wow!  All of those stories are undoubtedly newsworthy.  Outside of City Pages and Bluestem Prairie, most of these stories got little if ANY coverage in the Twin Cities newspapers (Star Tribune, Pioneer Press), television stations (KARE, WCCO, KSTP, KMSP) or other media groups (MPR).

Why?  I had no idea until the Wardlow story broke.  The reason the story broke was due to a call to my radio show where a caller explained the bullying from his perspective.  I was shocked.  I posted the story online, linking to most of the Twin Cities news media. "Here's the GOP candidate for the AG's office being accused of extreme bullying."  Nothing.  Flabbergasted, I contacted a few journalists I knew directly, saying here's the story, here's the bullied person's phone number, and please do not feel any need to include me or the radio station in the story.

One journalist told me directly: "Matt the story is definitely news worthy, but because it originated from you, I can't report on it without drawing criticism of being the 'liberal media'."

Sweet Lord...putting aside the acknowledgment the story indeed had merit, the criticism would be coming from people who want to see Wardlow as Attorney General, hence their criticism should be taken with a grain of salt.  I'm pretty sure I was one of the first people in town to talk about most of the above stories.  Now I have to ask how many of those stories were buried because I committed the crime of talking about them first?

Now we have an even more damaging story.  Last Monday, the 8th, I was made aware of a young man dying.  Jesimya David Scherer-Radcliff (Jesy) died due to rationing insulin.  As tragic as that story is on it's own, it has added depth when you consider Jesy was working two jobs and yet still couldn't afford the skyrocketing costs of insulin. Jesy was a person the Emergency Insulin Act was designed to save, someone working as hard as he could but still could not afford the life saving medication.  The Emergency Insulin Act was ruthlessly killed by Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka and the Senate Republicans at the end of session, likely due to big Pharma lobbying to kill a no brainer bill.

This would be the first person who would've been saved by the Emergency Insulin Act, instead he was the first (to my knowledge) to die since Gazleka and the Republicans decided it was better to hand a death sentence to the poor rather than 'waste' tax dollars saving these human beings. The merits of the story are undeniable, as Republicans across the state should have to answer why weren't they trying to schedule an emergency special session to fix this.  Instead, nothing...well at least for a few days.  KARE 11 finally wrote a story about it on Friday the 12th, but for the most part, the rest of the media decided to give the Minnesota Republican Party ANOTHER pass for their inexcusable behavior.

I don't know what we can do to fix this, but let me say to all news editors and journalists, if there is a story which originates from my radio show, which is undeniable news which should be reported, then:


My ego doesn't need to be stroked.  Leave me out of it and report the know, do your job!  At this point, your reluctance to look at the Republican Party's indiscretions and mistakes neutrally is getting pretty damn scary (and unAmerican). 

Then again, we're now witnessing the Twin Cities and national news media going out of their way to not call Trump's latest undeniably racist tweets racist, preferring to report on the racism as someone else making an accusation.  If we're the point where most journalists are unable to say "water is wet," then news media may be too far gone to save.

Friday, July 12, 2019

The Friday Link for 7/12/19

Tig Notaro is having her moment.

If you're not aware of who Tig is, she's a successful stand up comedian who's had consistent TV and movie work over the last few years.  But lately, she's pushed the accelerator on her career.

Whomever cast her as engineer Jett Reno in Star Trek: Discovery, congratulations!  You made one of the all time time great casting decisions in Star Trek history.  That's a big statement, so don't take my word for it.  Watch for yourself.

Sweet Lord is that fun!

Even better, Tig is a bit of introvert.  For someone who works in the industry, she doesn't really watch too much television or movies, focusing on her family instead of celebrity pageantry.  I respect the heck out of that.

The folks at Funny or Die have come up with a freaking brilliant talk show featuring Tig.  Under A Rock with Tig Notaro is a sensational show!  Tig has no idea who her guests are so she has to guess.  Charming, hilarious, and at times painfully awkward, it is wonderful.  Enjoy three of her episodes:

Have a great weekend everyone!

Friday, July 5, 2019

The Friday Link for 7/5/19

I hope everyone had a great Independence Day...well everyone outside of the Trump Administration.  Considering they're keeping human beings in worse conditions than zoo animals, those guys can suck it!

For your Friday Link this week, it's back to Minnesota's finest, the gold standard for comedy, Mystery Science Theater 3000!  One of the best parts about the show is no matter the cast incarnation you're viewing, there are always stellar jokes and can't miss episodes.

For this week's clip, it's San Francisco International!  This was one of the movies which came out in the 1970's Airport craze, only it's FAR worse.  An awful script, 'G'-list actors, comatose action sequences, and disturbing acting make this a gem.  Enjoy!

I hope you have a great rest of the 4th of July weekend!

Sunday, June 30, 2019

Was That All it Took?

The Minnesota Twins are insanely good this year.  No one is more surprised than myself as at the beginning of the season, I was scratching my head wondering who half these guys were.  But almost by magic, rookie manager Rocco Baldelli has taken this rag tag bunch of players and turned them in a juggernaut.

The transformation is insane.  The Twins lead the major leagues in home runs (Home freaking Runs!!!) at 156, runs (471), total bases (1446), RBI's (453), team batting average (.271), and they lead slugging percentage by a mile (.498).  They're third in hits (787), 4th in doubles (169), and are 6th in on base percentage (.337).  [stats as of 10 PM on 6/30/19]

This...THIS from a team who has been known as the small ball capitol of baseball.  The Twin's legacy against power began under Tom Kelly and continued through Gardenhire and Molitor's regimes.  They were so committed to hitting only singles and doubles they gave David Ortiz to the Boston Red Sox for a bag of pebbles.  They literally were angry he kept hitting the ball out of the park.  You would've thought the shame of that bad decision would've changed things up, but it wasn't until the complete gutting of the team after last season did we finally get a major shift in coaching.

It'a almost as if Rocco has just told these guys "you see that fence out there.  Hit it over that!"  I'm at a complete loss for anything else which can explain this offensive explosion.

Well not entirely.  I think the mentality of where the Twins have been for the last 15 or so seasons has a lot to do with Joe Mauer.  The Twins fell in love with Mauer the minute they drafted him.  They conceived of a marketing strategy which placed Joe in the center of their universe as the sun, and everything else orbited around him.  Mauer was a great player, but their desire to keep him as the "best Twin" caused the organization to play a style of baseball which sacrificed the talents of many; as long as the shine never went off the Mauer apple.  Anytime a hot hitting player started to get some traction in the fan base, they suddenly were in a different uniform.  If Mauer was primarily a singles and doubles hitter, then sure as heck no one else could be hitting home runs.

I know some people will scream that's not true, many players had big hitting years with the team.  Yeah, and where are they now?  The reason the 2019 roster was a bushel of "who?" is because any player who started to garner some of the Mauer praise for themselves found themselves shipped off to another team.  The removal of the overachieving player wasn't instant, but it was consistent.

Now, with Mauer retired, and along with him the Mauer doctrine, players are coming out of the shadows and swinging for the fences. There are eight Twins with 10 or more homers by late June! Jorge Polanco is hitting .320. Six regular players are hitting .270 or better.  Eddie Rosario has 60 RBI's, Max Kepler has 53, C. J. Cron 52!  This team came out of nowhere and if the bats keep working for them, they will play deep into October.

Swing for the fences!  Was that all it took?  Apparently, yes...well that and the removal of the Mauer handcuffs which were on the rest of the Minnesota Twins.

Northern Minnesota Love, 2019

I love taking pictures of wildflowers in Minnesota.  It's a goofy hobby.  Here are some photos from my recent trip up north.  Not only did I get some of the early flowers (which were blooming because it has been much cooler than normal up there), I found a Lady Slipper, the Minnesota state flower growing near our cabin.  Enjoy!

Friday, June 28, 2019

The Friday Link for 6/28/19

I was on vacation this week, got back on Tuesday and haven't had time to write squat this week.  I do hope to have my northland flowers post up this weekend, plus one or two others soon.

For this week, I'm turing it over to Showtime's Our Cartoon President.  Three clips for you tonight, starting with their take on the Democratic Debate, followed by Bernie meeting Mitt Romney, and finally the Trump reelection kickoff rally.

The last one is particularly good because it lambasts Pelosi and Schumer pretty good too. Enjoy!

WARNING - more than a little bad language!  You've been warned...

Have a great weekend everyone.

Friday, June 21, 2019

The Friday Link for 6/21/19

This week I plan to make you smarter...well not me doing it, but rather two very smart people.

First of, if you aren't subscribed to Robert Reich's YouTube page, you are missing out on one of the best YouTube pages, period.  Not only are his videos chock full of information and knowledge, they are truly good videos.  Reich understands the YouTube genre and format, excelling at it.  The only downside is some of his videos will make you angry and sad, because they point you to stark reality, but he always offers optimism in the end.

Two from Robert Rich, one on Trump's economic failure, and the other is the sham that is the conservative chants of 'Made in America' today.

The second guy up tonight is Stephen Fry, who has been putting out lusciously thick explanations on the stupidity of Brexit for awhile now.  If you go back and watch all of his videos, you'll be impressed with the completeness of his explanations.  Even relative novices in the US can understand what is going on.  Here's his latest from a few weeks ago.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

The Ghosts

There's something which I need to hammer into the moderate Democrats heads.  Moderate Republicans DO NOT EXISTS ANYMORE!

One of the biggest problems we've had as a party is moderate Democrats taking an approach which dismisses a majority of the Democratic Party in favor of 'working with' moderate Republicans.  It's not hard to understand, as many moderate Democrats think they have more in common with the guy five feet away from them, on the other side of the fence, rather than the brother WAY over on the other side of the field.

The problem is moderate Republicans are no longer on the other side of the fence, rather five farms over.  To visit the moderate Republicans the moderate Democrats still think exist, they need a time machine.  The moderate Republicans they're trying to work with haven't existed in the Republican party for 15 years.

Moderates on the right began being phased out by their own party starting in the early 90's.  Back then there were pro-choice, and pro-social safety net Republicans, but when Newt Gingrich came around, everything started to change.  The party demanded no deviation from a standard group of beliefs, a platform which was much further to the right than moderates were used to.  The message was simple; become more conservative or retire.

Many moderates did retire.  But some, begrudgingly or not, moved further to the right.  Jim Ramstad managed to make it to 2008, but by then even he realized the party wasn't going to stop moving further and further to the right.  He abandoned ship, replaced by the eager far right yes man Erik Paulsen.

Local Republicans, like Jim Rhodes, my one time MN House Rep., found himself the face of a party which not only no longer represented him, it no longer represented the district he served.  The national party's movement had turned his district a solid blue.

Moderate Republicans have disappeared.  They're casper, vapor, a ghost.  Anyone who's an active Republican is so far to the right, there's no ability for them to claim they're moderate.  For goodness sake, the Minnesota Republicans just voted against an Emergency Insulin Fund, a non partisan issue which would save lives.  They all voted against it.  Where's the moderate there?  On the national level, the narrative is clear.  If you're not two steps further to the right of Trump, you're liberal.  Look at how people like Susan Collins have had to sell out their own morals to stay in the party's favor.

Moderate Republican voters have scattered.  If they silently kept voting Republican, they technically moved away from moderation the minute they checked Trump on the ballot.  Some Moderates became Democrats.  Others, who are too stubborn to even consider voting Democrat, stay at home on election day.  They know their party is dangerous, but to vote against them would mean they're betraying Reagan.  They'd rather sit it out.

Moderate Democrats, the Republicans who are going to work with you have already become Democrats.  Forget trying to appeal to a phantom.  Focus your attention in two directions; your party (even though they might be liberal progressives, they still have more in common with you than the moderate Republicans do) and on the 110 million who sat out the last election (many of whom are frustrated Democrats and progressives who have been turned off by the moderates who have been driving the party towards the right rather than focusing on Democratic strongpoints).

Moderate Republicans no longer exist.

Friday, June 14, 2019

The Friday Link for 6/14/19

Since last week I had Saturday Night Live's Bill Hader in his Dateline NBC persona, I thought this week it'd be worthwhile to remember that Bill Hader was the best comedy skit game show host they ever had on SNL.

Now before people immediately scream Will Ferrel and his Alex Trebek from Celebrity Jeopardy or Kenan Thompson's Steve Harvey from Celebrity Family Feud, those were fantastic, but it was always the same bit.  I will also throw in Amy Poehler and Tina Fey in their one time sensational game show Meet Your Second Wife.  Great but it was only a one time deal.

Bader basically does the same host every time but tweeks it just enough to make each show unique.

Four for you tonight!

First up, the hands down best Bill Hader Game show host skit, Game of Game of Thrones!

Then it's the star studded It's a Date!

Then an underrated gem, America's toughest gameshow, Dylan McDermott or Dermot Mulroney!

Finally, We all ask the question, What's Wrong With Tanya?

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Cooling Off

The National Hockey League has a problem. They just had one of the most entertaining stories in years happen, a plucky St. Louis Blues team comes out of nowhere to win the Stanley Cup, and outside of hockey fans in St. Louis, no one cares.  Sure, I know there are some people who love hockey who are gushing about it right now, but the vast majority of us could care less.

And I like hockey!  Seriously I do. It pains me to see the consistent failure Minnesota hockey is.  I love a good playoff matchup, but I didn't watch anything past early May this year.  A lot of that has to do with a league which has some major problems that are only getting worse.  Here are three huge ones.

Every #1 seed lost in the first round of the playoffs.  What is the value of having a great record if all it gets you is a speedy exit from the playoffs?  Tampa, Washington, Nashville and Calgary gave you excitement heading into the playoffs, but all of them were shown the door.  Tampa, the best team this league has produced in years, was SWEPT by a lowly Columbus squad.  Not only do you send all the best players home in the first round, you force fans to have to familiarize themselves with teams they didn't pay attention to throughout the season just to follow what's happening.  If only one of the top seeds lost, then you would've had a much better playoffs. Instead, it was a championship of "who?"

Come playoff time, the goal of the underdogs is to cripple the other teams best players with scrub players, and they do it with amazing success.  Imagine five of the best players on a baseball team or football team were specifically targeted during a playoff game by some guy who was just signed to the respective team the day before.  No one would tolerate it, but watching 4th line guys go head hunting, tasked with a mission of ending a season, and sometimes a career, of the best players on the other side, is a tactic which is neutralizing the sport, driving away the fans.  And this is only getting worse.

The league has to get better at calling these games.  Game five of the Stanley Cup final was decided on a blown call.  Even the offending player knew they had committed a penalty.  The refs missed it, and there was no way for the league to get the blown call correct.  It's not diminishing the human referees to have available instant replay; it only makes the games better.

What can the league do?  As unlikely as these things are to come to fruition, I would suggest three instant changes.

  • Make the rinks Olympic size.  The more open ice means the best players thrive.  This alone would make it harder for underdogs to upset teams in the first round, but not impossible. The league should be looking to showcase their best teams and players in a given year, not have to send out addendum to update you on the no name wild card teams no one cares about.  The open ice would make CONSISTENT skill important again.
  • When a player injures another player, they sit until the other player comes back from the injury. If the player is assessed a suspension for injuring the other player, then the suspension begins the day the injured player returns, and they sit the entire time the player they injured is healing, and THEN the suspension.  If a player cripples another player and that player doesn't ever return to the ice, then the player who caused the career ending injury never plays again either.  This new standard would instantly stop the bloodbath the first round of the NHL playoffs has become.
  • Give the teams the ability to have a play reviewed, regardless of whether it's a scoring play or not.  If everyone in the arena sees the penalty, but not the refs, then you need to have the ability to right the wrong.  Give each team a review each period.
I would also make the argument the league needs to move some of these teams out of the far south. Nothing against Miami, Arizona, Carolina and Dallas, but these teams are lowest rung on the ladders in these major metro areas.  At least in Seattle, Quebec, Kansas City and Salt Lake City the communities would not have to have a tutorial to explain exactly what they are watching.  

The NHL can have a great story like St. Louis happen, but with its lousy playoff situation, it gets diminished and ignored.  Ice does indeed melt fast in June.

Friday, June 7, 2019

The Friday Link for 6/7/19

One of the funnier bits they did on Saturday Night Live over the last ten years was Bill Hader's version of Dateline NBC's Keith Morrison.  This impersonation is very good, a bit over the top but every time I've watched Dateline, there's at least one segment where Morrison sounds just like Hader's impersonation of him.

To do a good impersonation of someone, you generally have to be a fan.  Hader apparently loves Keith Morrison, and for that matter, Dateline NBC.

With that set up, the Friday Link this week is first Bill Hader doing an impersonation of Morrison on Saturday Night from a few years back (2011).  Warning, it gets a little adult:

Then a real treat.  The Sunday Today show convinced Hader to go visit the Dateline NBC studio and meet Morrison.  You can't fake the geekiness Hader puts forward.  He clearly is excited to meet the host.  For his part, Morrison seems to understand how the bread gets buttered and points out how Hader's impression of him actually extended his career.  The end of this clip is just so perfect!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Parental Advice from Matt!

Today, is the last day of the school year.  I'm so proud of my kids, how they're all happy, get great grades, are involved in sports and music, and seem well balanced.

I'm hesitant to give out parenting advice because one thing I've learned is there are lots of ways to raise great kids.  My way is not necessarily better or worse than anyone else's, and what worked for me might not work for anyone else.  That being said, here are three bits of advice which I think are pretty spot on.

1) Read to your kids when they're young.  Without a doubt, the reason my kids are good in school is because my wife started reading to them every night when they were young.  If she wasn't around, I'd read to them, but my wife carried the bulk of that burden.  There are many reasons reading to your kids at a young age is great (increased imagination, awareness of the world, learning important life lessons) but encouraging them to read on their own has paid us back 17 years later with straight A's.  If there's one thing I'd attribute to my children's positive outcomes, it's this.  Read a story to your kids every night.

2) Back in 2007, my wife and I made a decision.  I'd leave my Marketing Director gig and focus on working in radio, a schedule which allowed me to (technically) be a stay at home parent.  For 12 years, I've either dropped my kids off at the bus in the morning, picked my kids up from the bus in the afternoon, or both.  I'll miss that.  I understand having a flexible schedule like mine is a luxury, but making time for your kids, and letting them know you're a consistent presence, even when you're at work, is calming and reassuring for your kids.  Today, my youngest officially leaves elementary school.  After 13 years, I will no longer be taking my kids to the bus (big brother will drive them to school next year).  I feel like I accomplished something today.

3) Make sure your kids get downtime. These kids schedules are insane.  When you get kids into junior high and high school, you'll be floored by the levels of time commitment required for academics, sports, music, theater; whatever regular or extra-circular activity they're engaged in.  Just like adults, make sure they get time to stop and breathe.  How you let them do so it up to you, but as they get older, you'll come to realize screens are how their generation communicates.  Where I used to try to extremely limit the amount of screen time they got, I now realize it's a necessary evil to ensure your kid is not a pariah.  What age you allow a screen is up to you, but 13 has worked for us, with social media sites being allowed according to their threat level (Snapchat Never!).  We allow screen time, but that's us.  How you regulate your kid's downtime is up to you.  And make sure they are going to bed at a reasonable time.  Downtime is not just during the day.

I'll shut up now.  You raise your kids how you see fit, but if you do versions of the aforementioned guidelines, you'll probably be very happy with the results.  Good Luck!

The People Killing Christianity are the Christians

Dear Conservative, far right wing Christians.  The other day I was reading a story about how some Evangelical minister was blaming the downward trend in church attendance on the usual suspects: Liberals, Atheists, Satan, and even a shout out to the Netflix version of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.  Over the last few decades, I've read this story multiple times and now I feel it's time for me to try to set you guys straight.

The people who are killing Christianity are the Christians themselves; far right zealots whose altered version of the religion, and demands for loyalty to certain politicians and political beliefs, are driving people away in droves.

You are!  You've managed to take a religion whose tentpoles are based on peace, welcoming, love and compassion, and have mutilated it into a weapon against your perceived enemies.  You've distorted Jesus' teaching to unrecognizable levels, and in some cases just made crap up, creating new far right Christian tentpoles intended to vilify, torment, persecute and condemn. Let me show you how your version of the religion is a mockery, and is devaluing the Christian faith as a whole.

Let's start with the demand any Christian adhere to a Republican only standard, and how you're making fools with such a demand in the age of Trump.  News break: Trump isn't a devout Christian!  At best he's the guy who begrudgingly wanders into a house of worship on the major holidays.  He loves to brag how Christian he is, but he does very little to show any religious habits.  He doesn't go to church on a regular basis.  HE DOESN'T!  He clearly has a very limited grasp of the Bible.  And when you compare his political agenda to the teachings from Matthew, Mark, Luke and John [the four books of the New Testament which make all Chrisitians Christian] it's as if he's purposely trying to do everything the exact opposite of how Jesus told us to live our lives.  Yet you Christians have anointed Trump a new biblical deity, commanding all Christians to support him no matter how anti-Christian he gets.

Meanwhile, the same exact people constantly vilified former President Obama, a man who was clearly a Christian!  You discounted and dismissed his faith because it allowed the Christian right to hate him.  Under the far right Christians' new Biblical rules, love, compassion an forgiveness for your fellow man could be negated as long as you labeled the person you wanted to hate a non-Christian. With President Obama, the right ignored his faith to feed their flames of hate.  And before you clowns on the right say "I never did that," you're lying!  Every Evangelical Chrisitan pushed the 'Obama as a fake Chrisitan' narrative, or at best you silently said nothing as you nodded in agreement.

You far right Christians watch Trump do the most unChristian things and you say nothing.  Jailing asylum seekers seeking safety, denying sick people life saving medical coverage, gutting social programs for the poor, and embracing a grossly unfair economic and justice system, things Jesus taught us to fight against, are all given a pass by the Christian right.  Evangelicals just hum their psalms loudly to drum out the cries and screams from young children, lost in Trump's chaotic immigration system, some of whom have been sexually assaulted repeatedly, some of whom have been handed over by Trump to sex traffickers, as these young children lose hope of ever being reunited with family.  And over a dozen kids have died under Trump's 'benevolence.'  Yes indeed, Trump has done all of this, yet you far right Christians say nothing, endorsing his evil behavior with silence.

And yet the far right/Evangelical Christians feel as if they are pious for one simple reason; they've created a hierarchy of sins.  For Evangelicals and far right Christians, their version of Christianity is that abortion is the biggest sin, then being gay, and the rest of Jesus' teachings are just lip service; great if you do them, but no necessary because "I saved a baby and condemned a gay man!"  For the record, that's not how Jesus or Christianity works.  There was never supposed to be a Lord of the Rings type of list, 'one sin to rule them all,' but that's what the Right's done with Christianity

Abortion.  As I wrote years back, I'm personally against it.  Christians, being anti-abortion is never mentioned in the Bible.  IT ISN'T! Not only that, the Bible says life begins at Breath (not conception), Numbers mandates certain women need to get an abortion, and God himself not only demands slaughter of infants and fetuses, he himself has killed them (you think Noah's flood didn't kill a while bunch of unborn and born kids?).  And for the record, Jesus never once mentioned abortion, but he did directly condemn the death penalty.

Christian Right, you care nothing for that baby when the baby is born.  You don't.  I know you'll say that's not true, but it is.  When was the last time you screamed at a politician for not feeding them, not offering them medical care, not sheltering them, not offering free daycare options?   Jesus would be for all of these things, plus much, much more, AND YOU KNOW IT(!), but yet you never get into a politicians face when they threaten to cut these programs or argue the poor are just freeloaders.

I know the Christian Right, when confronted with all of this, fall back to the "but I'm saving an innocent life," but two points: the death penalty and wars.  If all life is sacred (according to the Bible), why do you tolerate executions and wars?  Don't give me 18th and 19th century revisions to the Bible meant to justify corporal punishment in the lawless West.  "Because he deserved it" was NEVER valid reason to execute a person, according to Jesus.  And we have executed innocent people, something which has been proven.  How many politicians have you called about that?  How many sermons have you heard about the wrongful imprisonment and killing of an innocent man?  The entire sacrifice of Jesus at Easter was a condemnation of execution, period! And war?  Come on, you think wars are still fought with guys on one side and the other guys on the other, like WWI.  We bomb from the stratosphere, killing innocent civilians.  Modern war kills FAR MORE civilians (including woman and children, both born and unborn) then it does soldiers today.  Trump is now offering to pardon war criminals, people who murdered innocents in war zones, and you Evangelical Christians say nothing because your sin outrage hierarchy tells you their death is not as bad as an pregnant teen getting an abortion (and [let's be honest] you're not bothered because the dead in war zones are usually Muslims - you know, the non-Christians excuse I mentioned earlier).

While I agree (personally) a baby is innocent, I feel it's innocent both inside the mother and outside the mother.  But not you far Right Christians.  The baby is innocent until it's born, then it's a moocher "wasting my taxpayer dollars!"  And I'll even cut deeper, outside of cute caucasian babies, your world view embraces many non-caucasian kids living life in a harsh and unpleasant foster care system for 18 years, with no chance at adoption, as 'Christians' insist they don't owe those children anything after demanding their birth.

At best Christian Right, you're not pro life.  You're pro de-womb-ing only, AT BEST!

As far as your strange fascination with the LGBTQ community, a group of people who were made in the same exact manner as heterosexual people, never once did Jesus condemn gay people.  He didn't, no matter how much you try to say he did.  You're just elevating lesser teachings from the Old and New Testaments to OVERRULE Jesus, an attempt to validate your hatred.  Whose teachings make up Christianity?  It is Jesus or Paul?  Is it Leviticus or Jesus?  Trick questions, it was Jesus!  Your hatred of the LGBTQ community is not Christianity.  It just isn't.

And by the way, your hatred of gay people always seems to boil down to your fascination with the kind of sex the LGBTQ community has.  That's weird and it tells me far more about you than it does about them.  Instead of vilifying others for engaging in something you secretly think about, maybe you should try it, with a willing partner, either heterosexual or otherwise.  Maybe you'll realize God made us in this form, and he never gave us no fly zones.  ENJOY!  Explore the beautiful thing you've been given, yourself, and stop hating others who your seem to be jealous of.

This is the Evangelical Chriatian today. "Here's the Bible, now we're going to throw out 99% of it.  Seriously, completely ignore most of it!  In regards to the pro life potion of Biblical teachings, here's some fan fiction we wrote which overrides actual Biblical scripture.  The only lives that matter are babies, Republicans and those in your immediate family who agree with your politics.  And here are a random group of non-Jesus Biblical passages on why we have to stop the LGBTQ community from having sex.  Seriously, obsess over the types of sex those people are having.  And just remember when you hear a Bible passage which focuses on the needy or contradicts what we preach, nod you head with a smile and immediately ignore it!"

It's a mystery why you guys can't fill up the pews!

The reason people are leaving the church in droves is you Evangelicals and Far Right Christians.  Stop being jerks, stop weaponizing the Bible, stop validating your personal hatreds with a religion which supposed to be based on love and compassion, and embrace a welcoming spirit, screaming out loud "you are loved here, regardless of who you are!"

That's always been Christianity's strongest selling point.

Friday, May 31, 2019

The Friday Link for 5/31/19

Two very different clips for you this week.

First, a re-posting of the exceptional video which is the end of any discussion of what the Civil War's real causes were.  It was about the South wanting to keep slaves, and rising up as an insurgency against the North in an attempt to keep them.  Colonel Ty Seidule is historically and pitch perfect in his explanation.  And a reminder, this is a video from Prager University, not exactly the most liberal group out there.

With talk about the origins of Memorial Day last weekend, how it dated to a celebration by freed slaves in South Carolina, honoring the Union dead in 1865, it brought out the Southern historical revisionists again. Show them this video and just stop talking to them if this doesn't set them straight.

Another historical video for you this Friday, but from a different point of view.  I love historical cooking and English Heritage was a wonderful You Tube channel on British Victorian cooking, as it took place at Audley End House.  This week's episode, we are introduced to Fanny Cowley, the dairy maid!  Her task was to make butter.  This was a lot of work, but you get to see the traditional way of churning butter (I love the table top model) and how you can do this at home.

Think about all this work when you look at butter today.  150 years ago, butter was a luxury item for most people, something you only had on special occasions.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!  Hi June!

Finding our Spines

I've been particularly harsh on US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi lately.  She seems to be frantically trying to find reasons why she shouldn't initiate impeachment on Trump, and I've had it.

We currently should be impeaching Attorney General Bill Barr for outright lying under oath to Congress, something he was caught red handed doing.  We probably should be having some level of House investigation into Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, after a brazen donation from a Russian oligarch to Kentucky exposed his compromised state.  And Trump?  Trump should've been gone in the first weeks of his term with the Trump University scandal.  If Hillary Clinton or former President Barack Obama would've had a scandal 1/20th as damning as that, Republicans, and about half of the Democrats, would've removed them from office within a month.

I watched in 2006 as Democrats promised a full investigation (with charges!) if it was determined the Iraq War was started under false circumstances.  All we had to do to ensure justice was to elect them to take control of the House and Senate.  The Democrats won.  I then watched in horror as many of the same Democratic leaders of today, when presented with undeniable proof the W. Bush White House (namely Dick Cheney and his staff) did indeed lie us into a war, shrugged their shoulders and did nothing to hold them accountable.  The Democrats including Pelosi were the ones who stated [paraphrasing] "let's let bygones be bygones," and insisted their stern wagging finger was punishment enough for the people responsible for thousands of needless US soldier deaths, tens of thousands of permanently injured US soldiers, and hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis.

I watched in 2008 as Democrats promised a full investigation into the banking crisis.  All they asked in return was that we returned them to power with President Obama, and they'd clean up Wall Street.  They won again.  All they had to do was call the Chief Financial Officers from each one of the failed banks into Congress, demand to see their incoming and outgoing numbers, and when they couldn't produce them because they were playing the markets with monopoly money, slap the cuffs on them and haul them away to serve life for defrauding the world of billions.  Nope! Not one CFO was called and barely anyone was held accountable.  We had a bunch of Democrats once again deciding sternly wagging their fingers was punishment enough for intentionally defrauding the world of billions of dollars just to ensure banking executives Christmas bonuses got paid.

There were multiple reasons Democrats didn't show up in 2010.  These two failed promises are a large percentage of that election's disinterest.

Why is it imperative to impeach Trump?  Trump has been given the greatest mulligan of all time.  At any other time in this country's history, a sitting president would've been removed from office for 1/100th of the lunacy Trump has produced, yet with a (likely compromised) Republican Party and Senate, they've turned a blind eye to the most incompetent man to ever reside in the White House.

But the Mueller Report changes everything.  From his own words, "if he could've said the President wasn't guilty of a crime, he would've."  He's saying he can't prosecute Trump because of DOJ rules, but the Congress has a Constitutional remedy for this.  They can impeach him, hold a trial in the Senate, which McConnell can't stop, and force everyone involved in this mess to go on the record as to what they think of Trump's guilt.

Is there any guarantee Trump would be thrown out of office?  Of course not, but impeaching Trump does two very important things beyond potentially removing him from office.  First, Democrats would make it plain and simple; If you commit a crime in the White House, you will be impeached!  The Democrats shouldn't look at whether Republicans would come on board to back them up.  Find your spines and impeach the bastard!  He's guilty, Robert Mueller basically said so, and so for Pelosi and the Democrats to wait for focus groups to tell them what to do is embarrassing.  I'd rather be the person impeaching Trump and not removing him from office than be the person too scared to do the right thing.  And for all those saying Trump supporters will be emboldened, Trump supporters were never going to vote Democrat anyway!  They were always going to vote Trump regardless of what Democrats do, so ignore their threats and do the right thing, DAMN IT!

The second thing the Democrats would do is prevent Republicans from weaseling away from their blind support of Trump.  If you don't impeach Trump, when it finally does comes out how crooked Trump really was (and it will eventually come out), all Republicans will say the same thing; "If the Democrats would've impeached him and brought this evidence to light, of course I would've voted Trump out of office.  But since the Democrats were the ones who decided to not impeach Trump, there is nothing I could do."  You create a valid excuse for Republicans ignoring Trump's antics.  If Pelosi does nothing, it gives Republicans the best of both worlds.

Speaker Pelosi and all Democrats, if you do nothing, Democrats will lose big time in 2020.  People want to be inspired.  Not impeaching Trump would only give a glimmer of hope to people who'll never vote Democrat anyway.

I see Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schemer and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer all sitting in the burned out husk of the Congress, the remnants of the once majestic building smoldering and blackened, charred embers, a complete loss.  The three of them turn to each other and say, "I think it's time to call the fire department!"

If the Democrats do nothing to hold this Administration accountable, the stereotype which has emerged about the left in this country will be proven true; all we are is a bunch off wimps, easily pushed around and manipulated.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Ayn Rand's Victory Lap

A man set himself on fire in front of the White House on Wednesday morning.  Seriously.  You probably heard nothing of it. Here's a news photo, and I apologize for the graphic nature.

The Maryland man died from the injuries he suffered.  This would be the second person who set themselves on fire at the White House this year alone.  As a society, we may disagree about a lot of things, but human beings killing themselves with self-immolation in our nation's capitol is not a sign of a healthy country.

People will point out the obvious; that this man was mentally unstable.  That's a given. Conservatives will probably blame President Obama, as ludicrous as that is.  The reality is people have had it.  After 40 years of wealthy-centric, conservative rule, people are at their breaking point.  This country is dying because the political machine has moved us so far to the right it's leaving most of us without hope.

Ayn Rand wrote about how greed was a virtue and compassion was a sickness.  Rand believed a government helping its own citizens was the real crime, that people should be able to do whatever they wanted and reap the benefits of their success, no matter how many bodies they had to step on to achieve their goals.  She portrayed selfishness as the greatest human characteristic of all time, and built a following of believers to her cause.  The fact she was a fraud, dependent on government assistance under a false name in her later years, is ignored by her most loyal followers, many of whom currently write laws in this country.  Rand has been a major influence on the modern Right politicians, along with the Gordon Gekko 'greed is good' speech from Wall Street.

How far towards Rand have we fallen?  We have Republicans stopping the most basic form of government, natural disaster emergency relief, because they feel the money is more important than the people suffering, or because they want money for their agenda before they help the devastated.  Republicans have simply forgotten about Puerto Rico, an island of US citizens scoured clean by a hurricane, just because they're not white.  Russia interfered with our election, an undeniable fact, and most Republicans seem perfectly fine with the foundation of America being cracked with a Russian wrecking ball.  Trump is preparing to pardon war criminals, people who are guilty of heinous crimes, people who have been tried in military courts and who have been found guilty, because he feels killing Muslim women and children is not really bad.  He has ripped children away from their parents and has lost thousands of them in a US bureaucratic system seemingly designed to never reunite them with their grieving parents.  Many of these children have been sexually assaulted, and more than few of them have died in our custody.

And this legislative cruelty has boiled down to the state levels.  Republicans in Minnesota stopped creating a stockpile of emergency insulin to help poor diabetics who can't afford the life saving medication.  They gleefully voted it down, an action which will undeniably end up killing some people.

America is broken; it has no more soul.  We no longer worship loving peaceful Gods, only wealth and money.  The US is slipping further and further into madness, with droves of conservative voters screaming in delight as the people and things they've been told to hate are dealt harsh punishments.  A man lighting himself on fire out of mentality compromised frustration doesn't even register as a blip on our radar.  No sadness.  No pity.  No remorse.  No compassion.

Can we return from this wasteland?  Even if we could, will we be allowed to?  Scarier yet, what percentage of the population will eagerly want to stay?

Friday, May 24, 2019

The Friday Link for 5/24/19

Happy Memorial Day Weekend everyone!

I'm in my own personal hell right now.  I've written in the past how bad May is for parents when it comes to getting anything done.  The last three weeks have been brutal, and this blog suffers.  There are posts I started three weeks ago, haven't been able to write a thing since, and now I have to decide if I try to finish them or move on.

I know...cue Dawson crying clip...

Two for you this weekend.  First the exceptional Our Cartoon President and their take on Pelosi and the Democrats fighting over impeachment.  There is a little rough language, so you've been warned!

The second clip will scare you.  It freaking terrified me as a kid.  I still remember watching this back in the 70's, nearly wetting myself.  Space 1999 was an enjoyable bit of 1970's science fiction TV.  The science was pure garbage, but they actually had good writing and adopted the darker storylines of science fiction of the time, making a science fiction which was intertwined with straight up horror.

Dragon's Domain scared me so bad I couldn't sleep for a week.  My father prevented me from watching the show from then afterwards (I believe it was during this hiatus from Space 1999 I stumbled upon Doctor Who, so it was all good).  I'm actually surprised they allowed this episode's villain creature to be on television in the 1970's.  When it spits out the bowling pin corpses (you read that right!), you'll wonder how it got through the screeners of the time too.  Enjoy!

Have a great weekend everyone.  Drive safe!

Friday, May 17, 2019

The Friday Link for 5/17/19

Was there any doubt it was going to be Tim Conway this week.

Conway got his start with McHale's Navy in the early 60's and was a standout performer.  He made stops at some other shows (like Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In), but it was when he ended up on The Carol Burnett Show that he became a household name.

I love Carol Burnett, but Tim Conway could steal the show in every sketch. He only was on for less than half of the shows as the other main characters but his bits were so good.  I never got into his Dorf stage from the 1980's.  He rode Dorf, and episodic TV, until his death this week.

For you this Friday, some of the best of Conway from the Carol Burnett Show.  Hands down, this one sketch could be the greatest American comedic skit of all time.  Yes, I'm serious.  I still laugh watching this one, and I've seen it at least 50 times.  "The Dentist":

The next bit, although not the best quality video, shows you his wit.  Every time Carol Burnett would record, they would do the sketch twice, supposedly one on script, and the second one off, allowing for some improvisations. The story I heard is they told Tim to make up the elephant story twice and he did. No one has the slightest idea what he's about to say, only that they have to allow him to get the story finished.  This clip features both takes from that night. Brilliantly brutal.

Here's the first appearance of his Old Man Character he would revisit for many years on the show.  Multiple times he had the rest of the cast losing it.

And finally a short piece with Tim making his on screen partners Harvey Korman lose it, something he did often.

Many other great skits from Tim.  Please go enjoy.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Spring Has Sprung

I went to the Arboretum.  I needed some Spring color.

Mission Accomplished.

FYI, it will probably be perfect this weekend, but it will be a freaking madhouse.

Friday, May 10, 2019

The Friday Link for 5/10/19

I'm sure we eventually we hear how certain members of Marvel's movie lineup didn't like each other, but as of right now, all of these guys look like they're good friends. No only do they all seem to be getting along on these never ending press appearances, but they're also branching out to help with developing other Marvel ventures.

Tonight is some fun with Anthony Mackie, Letitia Wright, Benedict Cumberbatch and Sebastian Stan going through a Marvel version of an Escape Room.  Sweet lord would it be fun to go through an Escape Room with these four.

The second video is for Mother's Day from the Peanuts characters.  It really has very little to do with Mother's Day (until the very end) but the little bits are fun.  Sounds a little off.

Short and sweet this Friday.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Sunday, May 5, 2019

My Email to Fox News

Dear Fox News producer ____,

Thanks again for having me on.  It's always a hoot!

I want to express some concern about how today's segment went.  Usually you contact me a few days beforehand, to see if I'm available.  If I am, you let me know what the topics will be on Sunday morning, a few hours before we go live.  I then drive to Fox 9 and stare at a blank camera as I listen to audio feed of the Fox News show, fed to me on a 1960's quality telephone line.  I try to participate in a discussion of the issues, as I decipher what everyone is saying.

The host I usually talk to, Leland Vittert, seems to be nice enough but you can tell he's not a fan of anything from the left.  That being said, he's been surprisingly even keeled on my previous segments, but that seemed to come to an abrupt end today.

This morning (Sunday) you had sent me two emails on today's topics.  The first was about former Vice President Joe Biden's comments about Jim Crow laws, comments he made in South Carolina.  I prepared to talk about the Democratic race and how he was right about the attempts at voter suppression.

Then about an hour before the show, you sent me a second topic email, this one about Senator Amy Klobuchar, and her calls for a return to civility in the White House, how she's calling for a leader kids can look up to.

Okay, pretty clear cut.

We went live and the first subject on Biden went fine (although the jackass conservative who was supposed to be a counter point seemed to only be there to throw out crass, insulting comments, like a REALLY bad [and possibly drunk] Andrew Dice Clay cosplayer).  Then Leland introduced the video clip of Senator Klobuchar. After the clip ended, Leland got a little weird.

Leland said he wanted for me to talk about Klobuchar's comments as they related to the economy.  O...kay...???  Klobuchar's comments in no way related to the economy, but fine, I can roll with the punches.  Then, taking another incredible abrupt turn, Leland then asked me a history question (???), if I could name one president seeking re-election during an economic boom who had lost.  In hindsight, I think Taft might fall into that parameter, but I could not recall such a detailed historical fact under pressure.  I did then say that even though the employment numbers are currently very good, and that the stock market is in high territory, there are undeniable bad signs in the economic sector, like trade, housing, and the fact most of the jobs being created in America today fall into he lowest paying category.

For the record, NOTHING Leland had asked me related to anything Klobuchar had stated.  And for the record, I wasn't the one who played the Klobuchar clip, THEY were.

Leland went back to ADC-lite (who's disgusting and inappropriate insults about Klobuchar seemed to be the ONLY reason Leland played the Klobuchar clip in the first place).  My problem is with how Leland segued back to the troll; "It sounds like Matt is endorsing Trump in 2020."


How in the hell did Leland even get that impression from anything I said?  There's nothing I said which could even be misconstrued as a Trump endorsement.  This was supposedly a neutral TV journalist, one of Fox News' self proclaimed 'news people,' making this outrageous claim.  I know he'll insist he was just joking, but in no way did he convey that to the audience and he never gave me a chance to rebut his dickish comment.

This comment, suggesting I endorsed Trump, crossed a line.  He should've NEVER said that, even jokingly.  No one puts words in my mouth, and you sure as hell don't credit me with false and incredibly contradictory opinions either.

And before Conservative guy insists I can't take a joke, this wasn't a joke.  I'm not angry about the changing of the topic, or the loaded question which was designed to catch me off guard (which I handled quite well, thank you).  I'm bothered by the lame attempt at a smear.  If I were to ever imply a Republican was endorsing President Obama, or any Democrat for that matter, and then cut them off before they could respond, I'd have a thousand weeping, "victimized," snowflake Rightos threatening legal action, and demanding my firing, without a freaking doubt.

I don't mind giving up the occasional Sunday, as up until today I enjoyed helping you guys out.  Plus the very real fact Trump himself might be watching is funny as hell.  I know the list of progressive/liberal/Democratic talk show hosts isn't exactly lengthy, and the ones who will appear on your network is probably 7 or 8 total.  I feel as if I get some minor benefit, but this is not a career maker for me.  It's just something I can do, so I do it.

I'm agreeing to be part of a back and forth discussion on Fox News about a predetermined set of topics, topics and contexts which I'm made aware of prior to going live.  I understand there will always be some improvisation, but today boggled the mind.  If you're only looking for a Democratic foil to insult and demean, I'm not your guy.  I've worked too hard and too long to have some D-list weekend host try to ruin my reputation, jokingly or not.

In the future, if you are needing someone for a discussion, please be in touch.

Kindest regards,


Friday, May 3, 2019

The Friday Link for 5/3/19

Two political ones for you tonight.

First up is a great clip from Colbert.  It's an NRA Public Service Announcement.  Who's ready for armed cats?!

Before I get to the next cut, let's go to a sensational tweet, self own from Tomi Lauren, @handnf, collected by @maninthehoody:

And for a great recap of the last few weeks of Mueller craziness, Randy Rainbow is our point man! 

Have a great weekend everyone!