Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Silly Bits IV

It's sometimes amazing how you can barely get the thoughts in your head on a page fast enough (especially when it's my head we're talking about), and at other times the well seems to become more parched than it's been in Kansas this summer.  This isn't to say that there's nothing going on, just nothing that seems worthy of working up a good rant over.  Besides, I haven't attempted to do a bit of catching up in a while, and another 'Silly Bits' certainly allows me to.  Of course nothings exemplifies the concept of 'Silly Bits' more in the upcoming election season than one mentioning the hijinks of a couple of the local political candidates.

Todd Akin probably has to top the list, being both by a Republican Senate candidate (from Missouri and not Kansas, thank goodness) and for his recent rape / abortion comments.  Forget whether this narrow-minded cretin can now win an election or not.  This is no longer about the courage of one's convictions as much as it's about someone being too stupid to hold public office (or perhaps even a sharp object)I know that the jackass is the symbol of his opposition's party, but it would be hard to prove it after seeing someone seeking office in the more deliberative branch of the legislature leaping into a minefield of his own creation with his 'legitimate rape' and 'a woman's body shutting down' comments.  Akin no longer appears to have any friends in the Republican Party (or funding from it), and even the 'cross-over' Democratic support he got in the primary seems to have evaporated (Democratic groups even supported him financially). His refusal to withdraw his bid could hand Claire McCaskill her much-in-jeopardy seat back with a pretty bow tied on it, in spite of her own image problems  (Hmmmm ....).  It's too bad Chuck Barris of "Gong Show" fame isn't still around to give this guy the big hook.

On the Kansas side and largely over-shadowed by candidate Akin, we had freshman Congressman Kevin Yoder's apparently alcohol-fueled behavioral lapse coming out in the last week.  It seems that last August after a number of first-time national legislators were over-served in hotel along the Sea of Galilee while on an all expenses paid junket, Rep. Yoder was among seven who decided to take a little late night swim.  While apparently a decent enough swimmer, the lack of swimming apparel was troubling enough to earn the seven a stern lecture from den mothers Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy (the second and third highest ranking Republican members).   

Personally, I'm shocked ... shocked I tell you; to discover that members of our national legislature indulge in intoxicating beverages while on all expenses paid junkets.  I am shocked still more that they would indulge in these unseemly late night freshmen fraternity antics, none of which involved Congressional pages, hookers, or even illegal drugs or gambling.  Most especially, I'm shocked that something that occurred a year ago is only now (less than 80 days before the election) coming to light in the mainstream media.  It seems incredible that a government that can't keep a foreign policy secrets for as long as it takes to cook a Quarter Pounder with cheese can manage to keep the lid on this one until it might have some impact on the election.  I have yet to see any art on the event (evidently no one's cell phones were working), but there's still time before we vote.  If I see anything, I post it for you.  I'm reminded that one of my distant relatives, John Quincy Adams, used to skinny dip in the Potomac while President (scary if you've ever seen a picture of him); something I believe would require a great deal more courage than intelligence these days. 

(This also inevitably reminded me of a great Lyndon B Johnson quote:  "If one morning I walked on top of the water across the Potomac River, the headline that afternoon would read:  President Can't Swim.") 

Of course no discussion of candidate news would be complete without that of Vice Presidents.  It started over Republican Mitt Romney's 'risky' choice of Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin as his potential VP.  You know, someone's going to have to redefine 'risky' for me.  In an election that the Republicans have been saying for some time is all about the economy and the budget, why would it be a bad idea to pick someone who has been focusing on it since he came to Congress?  You may not like his ideas (and I'm not sure I do), calling them either 'too soft' or 'too draconian', but it's hard to dispute that the man can argue his case with logic, reason, and passion; with the facts to back up his arguments at his fingertips.  The fact that he's a good looking, apparently likeable guy who looks good in slacks and a golf shirt probably doesn't hurt him by comparison either. 

Speaking of comparison, we certainly can't look at VP's without giving a shout out to the Joe Biden gaffe fest.  It's seems amusing to me that in an election when so many are comparing President Obama's first term to that of Jimmy Carter, that more haven't jumped on the Dan Quayle bandwagon where Joe is concerned.  We all know the recent list of faux pas by the current second-in-command, so I won't repeat them; but did you know that things have gotten so bad that the Los Angeles Times recently reported that the White House no longer provides transcripts from 'Jokin' Joe's' events.  If this keeps up, they're going to have to hold a daily press conference to translate what VP Biden was trying to say around the foot perpetually stuck in his pie hole.

So perhaps we can end the silliness today by paraphrasing an ad campaign from 2008's Democratic presidential primary:  

'If the phone rings on 34th Street and Massachusetts Avenue (where the VP lives on the grounds of the United States Naval Observatory) at 3 AM to tell it's occupant that the President of the United States is dead, who would you rather take the call before taking the helm of the nation?'  



Judy said...

Silly Bits & Bites strikes again, good going Tim!

Timothy W Higgins said...

Thanks Judy! I'm thinking of applying for a Federal grant to start a "Ministry of Silly Bits", similar to the Python one for silly walks.

Who knows, I may make it all the way to an appointment of the 'Czar of Silly Bits' ...