I hate to sound like a Tea-Party nutbag, but I really love the United States’ Constitution. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a free-speech fanatic. I love the Constitution’s sharp focus on individual liberties, its emphasis on the rights of the accused, and that grade-school-civics favorite, the checks and balances of power. I despair when these ideals meet real-life sacrifices, especially glaring ones like, oh, the utter lack of Congressional declarations of war since WWII. I also don’t like to sully the document’s purity with excessive amendments, interpretations and adaptations. No Defense of Marriage Amendment, please, but while you’re at it, no marriage at all (it violates the establishment clause, you see).
But don’t call me a Scalia-esque strict constructionist. If I could, I would copy-edit the otherwise brilliant Constitution and correct a centuries-old omission with no qualms: I would give the United States a monarch.
It probably seems unamerican, undemocratic and all-around anti-freedom-y to propose that we foist an unquestioned figure to the crown of government. It probably sounds old-fashioned, all uppity and needlessly symbolic and European. I know it does. It’s exactly my point.
At Truthout, Robert Naiman asks and answers what would happen if Michael Moore ran for President in 2012:
If Michael Moore were to run for president in 2012, it could be a game changer in American political life. For starters, it would likely shorten the war in Afghanistan by at least six months, and the American and Afghan lives that would be saved would alone justify the effort. If Moore announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination now, and followed up that announcement with a vigorous campaign focused on the struggles of rank-and-file Democrats, it would remobilize rank-and-file Democratic activists. It’s possible that he might even win; but win or lose, the campaign could arrest and reverse the current rightward, pro-corporate trajectory of our national politics, which is the predictable consequence of the failure of Team Obama to deliver on its promises from 2008, which in turn was the predictable consequence of the doomed effort to try to serve two masters: Wall Street and Main Street.
The Onion reports that George W. Bush has been having a chuckle or two thinking that he was President for eight years:
Witnesses said the former president’s chuckling grew even stronger as it dawned on him that, for eight straight years beginning in January 2001, he had the power to nominate executive and judicial officers to the federal government, as well as grant unlimited presidential pardons and reprieves if he so desired.
My family is keeping our thermostat at 61 degrees this winter. We decided to bring it down from our traditional 65 degrees in order to save energy. [Note: Late at night at my house, the temperature automatically drops down to 55]. I’ve put a thermometer in various rooms to check the accuracy of the thermostat. The actual daytime temperature ranges from 59 to 62 in the various rooms. When we are all gone for the day, we manually set the temperature down to 55.
When I mention “61 degrees” to people, most of them are surprised; some of them are aghast. Apparently, at least among Americans, 61 degrees is an usually “cold” temperature for the interior of a house in the winter. Over the past couple of weeks, I even heard from several people who keep their thermostats above 70. When you browse the Internet, you will find numerous “authorities” advising you to set the thermostat down to 65 to save energy (e.g., here). Here’s an informal survey of quite a few folks.
Apparently, even our new energy-conscious President likes it toasty indoors.
I caught the following on Reddit.com, and you’ll need to read this for yourself to really appreciate it. The Onion described the Bush Presidency extremely well in a satirical article published on January 17, 2001, well before Bush actually started doing most of his damage.
In the Washington Post, Bob Woodward has written an excellent summary of the ten lessons we have hopefully learned from the Bush Presidency. The article is titled “10 Take Aways From the Bush Years.” Here are the titles to these ten lessons, which Woodward carefully illustrates throughout his article: 1. Presidents set the tone. Don’t [...]
“Black Man Given Nation’s Worst Job” This is the title The Onion has given to its article welcoming Barack Obama to his new job. It’s all tongue in cheek, of course. On a more serious note, I breathe a sigh of relief tonight. It feels like the nightmare is over and we can now start [...]
Someone is having quite a bit of fun at Sarah Palin’s expense. Make sure you click around when you visit this site. Especially the red phone. She’s got it coming, of course, since “Joe the Plumber” has already given more interviews than Palin. Here’s another reason she has it coming: The office of the Republican [...]