Sunday, July 5, 2015

The Law of the Land...more or less


        It's no secret that the U.S. Constitution has been subject to much (mis?)interpretation over the years. Maybe it's too long, too complicated, not complicated enough, who knows? If I were rewriting it, I'd try,
                                           United States Constitution
                                                   We the people.
                                                         The end.
                                                            ***
"What?! What is that supposed to be?"
"It's the constitution. Why, you don't like it? Did you read the whole thing?"
"But, but, but...there's nothing there. Everything's missing."
"Well, it's a little short but easy to read."     
"But, it doesn't say anything, doesn't answer any questions."
"Give me a question that my constitution won't answer for you."
"Ok. What if two gay people want to get married. Can they?"
"You sure you read the whole thing? Look, right after the 'e' in 'we', you see where it says
   that the constitution guarantees the right to marriage? And if the constitution guarantees
   the right to marriage, gay people also have the right to marry. Simple."
"Wait a minute! I don't see any of that stuff in there. Where are you reading?"
"Hmm, do you see the stuff about the right to privacy, the right to an abortion, the right
  to make everyone buy health insurance or pay a penalty?"
"No, I don't see any of that stuff."
"Just as I suspected. You're an originalist."
"Doc, no! Am I going to die?"
"An 'originalist' is someone who reads the constitution and interprets it the way it was
  written. They are often referred to as The Sensible Ones. Others claim that the
  constitution is a 'living document' and has to be interpreted differently, no matter what  
  it says or how clearly it's written,  because it was written for 'a different time.' They are 
  often referred to as New York Times Editorial Writers."   
"But that's crazy! Something can mean one thing today and something completely
  different tomorrow. Depends on who's on the Court. What a way to run a country."
"So, who's perfect?"
"And if The Constitution is a 'living document' and can mean different things on different
  days, then what about the Penal Code, the Commercial Code, the..."
"Sh-h-h, don't give them any ideas."

Monday, June 15, 2015

You Go, Girl!


Of course we need public financing of elections. How else will voters get to really understand the issues and on where each candidate stands on each one. In discussing the Trans Pacific Trade Partnership, Hillary Clinton stated her position,
 
"Let's take the lemons and make them into lemonade."
 
"Get the best strongest deal possible."
 
"Drive a harder bargain."
 
"Getting to what works."
 
"Let's make it as good as can be."

"What difference does it make?" - Oops, wrong issue.

Monday, June 8, 2015

50 Million Climate Scientists Can't Be Wrong


        Try casually mentioning that you think 'climate change' or 'global warming', as it was called before Al Gore was making The Speech one day and it started snowing on his head, is no big deal and you will be informed that 97% of climate scientists think it's a very big deal, is dangerous, and is going to destroy the planet if we don't do something about it right away and that you are a fool and should just go away and stick your head in the troposphere.
        Whew! Scary stuff but is that really what all those scientists believe? Really?
        Well, climate scientists do overwhelmingly agree that the planet has been in a warming trend for about the last 150 years but, so what? The Little Ice Age was a time of unusually cold temperatures which ended in 1850. Since then, the planet has been warming. Warm, cold, warm, cold...It's the way climate has naturally fluctuated since the Earth was formed billions of years ago. (By the way, since 1850 Earth's temperature has gone up approximately one degree and the seas have risen...8 inches.)
         The important question is whether this warming is dangerous and there is nowhere near 97% agreement on that, with scientific opinions being all over the map, unless, of course, you survey only the 'scientists' in Hollywood,
         "Now, when you hear the loud crack, let's see those brows furrow. A glacier is coming apart because of global warming and climate change. We're talking the end of the world here, people. Furrow, furrow!"
         "You mean like they taught us in Actor's Studio?"
         "Exactly!"
        Remember, movies are make believe. Playing a brilliant scientist isn't the same as actually being one.  
        And in 2012 Hurricane Sandy had barely gone off to hurricane heaven when the usual suspects, the ones who should know better, started going on about how it was all because of climate change.
        Anyone remember the Galveston Flood of 1900? Category 4 hurricane, winds of 145 miles per hour, 15 foot storm surge flooding the city, over 8,000 dead. What was that all about? Maybe it was pre-global warming or pre-climate change. Pre-Al Gore are you listening?!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

"Buddy, Can You Spare A Pepperoni?"


       
         Recently, the world learned, even before the President had a chance to announce it (with appropriate apologies) to the UN General Assembly that, if you live in Walkerton, Indiana, are gay, and are planning to marry, you will probably not be able to have your festivities catered by the local pizzeria.
        "Yaagh! Waa! Pizza Nazi. Pizza Nazi!" (Seinfeld for gentiles?)
        I know. I know. Not to make fun. It's the principle, not the pizza. But what exactly is the principle involved here? That sexual preferences have to be respected because that's the way we superior folk in New York and California think while religious beliefs...well, it's just those local yokels clinging to 'their guns and their bibles.' Who cares what they think?
        Well, maybe we should care. Today it's Evangelical Christians getting death threats for not wanting to cater a gay marriage. Tomorrow it'll be the Planned Parenthood Marching Band  being forced to show up for a Repeal Roe rally or the Little Sisters of the Poor being compelled to provide contraception and abortion services to their employees (Oh, sorry, that's been done already. Thank you President Obamacare.).       
        And the day after that, who knows? What a way to run a railroad...or a country. How do you spell, "Live and let live?" We used to know. Maybe we were better spellers in the old days.
        By the way, and just thinking, why would anyone even want to have their wedding catered by a group who considers them to be a couple of sinning miscreants? Most of us restaurant goers have had an occasional badly prepared meal but we rarely send it back. Partly it's because we don't think it's all that important and we don't want to make extra work for the waiter, but isn't it maybe also because we sometimes wonder what might happen to that dish when it goes behind the swinging doors into the kitchen and comes back out again?  And, if all the waiters and the kitchen staff aren't too crazy about you to begin with, well...
        *To all my gay patients and friends, known and otherwise, who are planning to marry and invite me to their weddings, please be kind enough to let me know if the caterer is there willingly. If not, I promise that I'll still show up but...I'm bringing my own soup.   

Monday, March 30, 2015

If you like your Jewish state, you can keep...


WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama said Tuesday that the U.S. is weighing whether to back Palestinian efforts to seek U.N. recognition for an independent state and that recent remarks by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dim hope for a negotiated two-state solution.

That's our guy!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Is Paris Burning?


 
         When marching along the Champs Elysees to 'show awareness' is not enough to stop the killing, maybe time to try something different,
       1) Shooting fish in a barrel becomes much more difficult when the fish are armed.  Anyone who uses or has used a firearm in his or her work or is willing to learn how to use one safely should be allowed to carry. Going on about how the world is becoming like Dodge City doesn't make it so. It just acknowledges that what is, is (to paraphrase a former American President).
        2) Is 'waterboarding' torture? Maybe time for a compromise to this long running talmudic discussion. How about, anyone actually caught doing the shooting and who may have useful information gets his or her wounds dressed and, well, let the dunking begin. Resume discussion while he, or she, is drying off. 
        And, finally,
        3) Stop Giving Them A Reason!
        Many people take their religious beliefs very seriously. They go right to the core of who they are. If you can't respect those beliefs, at least maybe refrain from condescendingly mocking them in the name of 'free expression of ideas.'
       And, by the way, what exactly are those 'ideas' that are being 'freely expressed' by cartoons of The Prophet having anal intercourse with another man or being locked in a homosexual embrace? Are these the same 'ideas' that are being freely expressed by an 'artist' who makes his 'art' by soaking a crucifix in a jar of urine or by desecrating a torah?  How clever we all are...
        And speaking of cleverness, here's another real knee-slapper,
        "Je suis Bill Cosby."
        Ha, ha. Ho, ho. Hey, why aren't you laughing? Don't get the joke? Don't think rape is all that funny?  Nowhere near as funny as someone else's most sacred religious beliefs? Hmm, guess some people just have no sense of humor. 

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Hello...Dalai?


"We are summoned to push back against those who would distort our religion for their nihilistic ends," Obama said during remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast. OUR religion? OUR?! Honest mistake. He probably thought ISIS is all Christians....like him, right? And they were all born in Hawaii.

Religion aside though, at least he still knows the good guys from the bad. After all, he's refusing to talk to the Dalai Lama and Benjamin Netanyahu. Is this worth an honorary degree at Brandeis or what?