Wednesday, January 23, 2019

A Donkey Can’t Change Its Stripes

gaffe: a social or diplomatic blunder

Kinsley gaffe: when a politician inadvertently tells the truth…saying something publicly that they privately believe is true, but would ordinarily not say publicly

You know,

like that time Hillary called us a basket of deplorables? That was awesome.

So thank you Joy Behar, for inadvertently letting the truth slip out yesterday in an effort to be cute:

Whoopie: Why is that? Why do we keep making the same mistake?

Joy: Because we’re desperate to get Trump out of office. 

Her answer also qualifies on all counts as being too cute by half.

Image result for too cute by halfBut not in a puppy sort of way

And don’t anyone dare claim Joy isn’t actually a politician; it is an established fact that all members of the MSM, no matter what role they play in the circus, are political operatives of the Democratic party. No matter their credentials, no matter how they try they can’t change their stripes.

Image result for too cute by halfNo matter how cute, it’s still an ass

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Take a memo:

Image result for rush to judgement proverbs

To the News Media and the Diocese of Covington:

Have you no shame?

I’ve read numerous “updates” and “corrections” to your original stories. Most of them still inadequately describe the facts, none of them sound very apologetic.

Do the right thing. Correct your judgmental error. Flat out apologize for your slander and libel of this bunch of innocent young men whose families are now receiving death threats. Is that too much to ask? 

Image result for jump to conclusions calvin hobbesAnd of course that tidy conclusion has been pre-ordained by the narrative.

Image result for do your job or we'll do it for youOr I swear, we’re going to do it for you

Monday, January 21, 2019

Bad News Monday

Bad News #1: Our first winter storm of the week rolled in late last night, just in time to ruin our viewing of the Super Blood Wolf Moon. So I rely on you to post your own magnificent pictures. It won’t be the same thing but I will attempt to extract your sense of amazement.

Bad News #2: If you are a Catholic be advised that the left has just put a target on your back – a term that is unacceptable only when Sarah Palin or some other alt-right hater uses it.

And all evidence indicates this is yet another preemptive spoiling campaign aimed at Amy Coney Barrett’s likely nomination to the Supreme Court in the equally likely event that RBG is unable to continue her duties. It is just a twist on the application of the classic Alinsky rule they used (in conjunction with others) against Brett Kavanaugh: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” The fact they need to take down an entire religion in order to get it to work, well, more the glory!

The attack on innocent young men from Covington Catholic is just one among many that have preceded and will follow on.

Image result for covington catholic kentucky

And the fact that the media got this story so egregiously wrong should indicate alone that it was conducted with extreme malice. As of late last night the only apologies I’ve seen are from rightwing sources who piled on a bit to easily. Still waiting to hear from the networks.

Nor is it just the media, the official representatives of the Socialist Democrats in Congress have taken up the banner as well. For example, Mazie Hirono along with Kamala Harris have determined that the Knights of Columbus are for all intents and purposes a terrorist group:

(The question) appeared to reference the recent controversy that erupted following a CNA report that Sens. Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Mazie Hirono (D-HI) questioned judicial nominee Brian Buescher about his membership in the Knights of Columbus, which they described as an organization with “extreme views” that are “opposed to marriage equality” and “women’s reproductive rights.”

So there’s the Dems’ current strategy: paint Catholicism as a dog whistle for homophobia and misogyny. Only now they’ve decided to throw racism into the mix as well, because that never hurts. Besides, it’s very easy to manufacture.

All you need do is level the allegation. And that’s something the Left has been cultivating for a very long time.

Image result for false allegation quotes

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Bring Some Stinky Cheese and Don’t Forget the Crackers

“As a candidate for president, I promised I would fix this crisis – and I intend to keep that promise one way the another.”

PDJT offered an end to the government shutdown, extended protections for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program recipients for three years and a three-year extension of protections for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders in exchange for the partial border wall funding of $5.7 billion.

I would say that the ball is in the Democrats court but for the fact they batted it down before it was even  officially lobbed over the net.

Win the set, lose the match

Democrats, however, quickly rejected the deal, with Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer of New York emphasizing  that Trump’s offering some protections for DACA and TPS recipients "in exchange for the wall is not a compromise but more hostage taking.”

Image result for schumer pelosi response to trump oval office address hostage tape

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi further described Trump’s proposal as a “non-starter” in a statement released shortly before his nationally-televised speech, insisting that the deal could not pass the House of Representative.

So I take this opportunity, on National Cheese Lovers Day, to ask the key players this: if you were a cheese, what kind of cheese would you be? We already know what kind PDJT will be:

But what about Chuck and Nancy? Perhaps a nice oozy, stinking variety…

Image result for stinking bishop cheese

or maybe a goaty one:

Image result for goat cheese

And speaking of cheese, I also have another PSA: don’t forget that tonight presents a spectacular lunar event. The Super Blood Wolf Moon, an astronomical trifecta - the sun, moon and Earth will align on Sunday for the year's first - and only - total lunar eclipse. And to make things even better the moon, as we all know, is made of bleu cheese! So technically it’s a Super Blood Wolf Blue Moon. Don’t miss it, and don’t forget the crackers.

“Everyone knows the moon’s made of Bleu Cheese”

You can watch the entire Wallace and Gromit moon adventure, A Grand Day Out, here. 

But I digress: since the Democrats apparently don’t want to play any game with VSGPDJT it looks like he will be forced to keep his promise by “another” way. I don’t think the Dems are going to like it when the other side plays by their rules and adopts the “by any means necessary” offense.

Saturday, January 19, 2019

The Truth According To Your Weltanschauung

This point of view might work for amateur art critics:

Image result for i don't know anything about art but i know what i like

But the amateur journalist equivalent - “I don’t know anything about truth, but I know what I believe…” doesn’t work as well. Art is intended to be subjective but journalism is supposed to be based on truth, which is intended to be objective. Yet here we are, living in an inverted reality where art is “truth” and truth is “art.”

Allan Bloom tried to warn us over 30 years ago in The Closing of the American Mind about the dangers of abandoning truth to the vagaries of relativity but few listened. And now we have arrived at a tenuous place where anyone can define “their truth” which stands completely apart from what once was known and accepted as objective truth. Hence if Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s truth is that she was sexually attacked by now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh when she was 16, and we are to accept it at face value, as the media did.

Because, remember, when today’s liberal journalists see “truths” they don’t like they are free to ignore them, but when they see “truths” they really, really like they will hype them endlessly, true or false, as truth is an anachronistic patriarchal concept that doesn’t work in our postmodern world. All of which explains yesterday’s Busted Buzzfeed Blockbuster:

There’s a bright line between objective journalism and propaganda and the American media jumped it a long while back. Big media, accompanied whole heartedly by Big Education, has accepted and propagated relativism disguised as tolerance for so long they no longer recognize the difference. Along with our lock-step political class we can blame these institutions for the social and spiritual malaise blanketing the country. The lot of them refuse to even identify the truth let alone uphold it. That leaves “artists” everywhere to paint “their truth” according to their weltanschauung.

Image result for calvin hobbes art

Friday, January 18, 2019

FLOTUS Friday: Government Shutdown Edition

Two stories headlining the news this morning:
Wouldn’t it be fun if  Melania were part of that North Korean envoy? “FLOTUS stands in for furloughed ambassador and saves the world from a nuclear armed madman.”  Wouldn’t that just…


fry the cupcakes off the MSM? I think I’ll go with that and just spread the rumor around. It’s as likely to be true as anything else you’ll hear on Fake News all day.

Caution: FLOTUS at work, deranging America’s newsrooms one Network at a time

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Gillette: Get Back In Your Lane

You would think that everything to be said about the new Gillette ad has already been said. But honestly, this commercial is truly a sign of the Times. Casting men as as a clear and toxic danger to women because of the bad behavior of a few is more propaganda than pitch, and seems an odd way to woo (male) customers. In fact I think there’s a word for that type of stereotyping, what is it again? Oh, yes, “profiling.” Isn’t that supposed to be a bad thing?

I don’t think the “new Gillette” is going to have much staying power. Already the backlash is beginning to look a lot like the customer reaction to the “New Coke.”

Image result for new coke ad disaster

Unfortunately it’s not as easy to retract a cynical virtue signaling campaign as it is to go back to your original formula

Gillette has a huge problem on their hands, and it isn’t toxic masculinity. People are sick of being hectored about things they are neither guilty of or responsible for. For example I do not know one white person of “privilege” who has ever owned a slave, taken a Native America’s land or given anyone typhoid (although if we keep our borders open that last one probably won’t stand for long). By the same token men who have never lifted a hand to a woman other than to offer them stability while getting out of a car in 5 inch heels are tired of being assumed to be untamed animals. And Gillette has inadvertently presented them with a target to lash back at this injustice.

Oh sure, there will always be some amenable toady-men who will take their side and think that those who take exception to the ad’s message are the ones out of line:

“I am truly flabergasted by many of these comments. The ad basically says "don't bully, don't sexually harass women, stand up for those who are weak, be the best man you can be."…I say congrats Gillette on stepping out of your lane and challenging men to be men of honor and grace.”

If I were advising Gillette I’d say “get back in your lane.” Men are looking for a close shave first thing in the morning, not a life coach. Remember when consultants obsessed over getting your company to identify, nurture and improve its core product? Now they are seemingly unconcerned with your product and want you only to adopt politically correct core values and impose them on their customers. Doesn’t work well for governments, works even less well in business where you have to contend with the wishes of a fickle public.

Which is why I offer this old fashioned, unsolicited advice to Gillette: You make razors, and razor blades. For men, with beards. Men like to watch sports. If they want a sanctimonious lecture they’ll go back to school. So just shut up and get back in your lane; give your core customers what they want: a clean shave and sports.

And if anyone finds this post offensive I would like to invoke Matt Walsh’s non-apology:  

I have decided to officially and formally not apologize. I'm not sorry at all, even slightly.

Indeed, I especially want to convey my absence of remorse to anyone who was offended by what I said. If you are the sort of person who gets twisted into knots when someone articulates a point of view that differs from your own, then you are exactly the sort of person who should never receive an apology for a differing point of view — if I were offering one, which, again, I'm not.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Let’s Take the Benjamin Franklin Challenge

I can’t believe I missed Benjamin Franklin’s birthday yesterday [ed. it’s been brought to my attention that I’m actually one day early – so unlike me] but it’s not too late to honor one of the country’s most influential founding fathers. The man who once wrote

“If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten, either write things worthy of reading or do things worth the writing.”

in his own life did both.

As CDN notes though this truly Renaissance man has never been adequately recognized for his remarkable contributions to this great country. He was known as an entrepreneur and a businessman, a meteorologist,  scientist, inventor, musician, librarian, humorist, economist, philanthropist,  philosopher, diplomat, and statesman. He puts most of today’s government “leaders” and statesmen to shame as they are mostly nothing more than lawyers and fundraisers.

In an age where political midgets and other ignoramuses suggest the Constitution is outdated and no longer relevant we have more reason than usual to be concerned with Franklin’s warning to Mrs. Powel:

a-republic-if-franklin

In honor of his birthday I propose we dedicate the year to taking the Benjamin Franklin challenge, and try our best to keep this Republic that was carefully crafted and designed – some say guided by the hand of God.This will be no meager challenge as we have to contend with the likes of Beto O’Rourke and his ilk who consider the U.S. an “empire” that has grown beyond the controls of the Constitution.

"Can an empire like ours with military presence in over 170 countries around the globe, with trading relationships...and security agreements in every continent, can it still be managed by the same principles that were set down 230-plus years ago?" - The Blaze

In many ways his comment is helpful; it solidifies the otherwise seemingly suicidal policies and positions of the new lot of Democrat-Socialists.

In order to preserve Franklin’s conclusion about the sun carved into George Washington’s chair at the Constitutional Convention we must be very diligent indeed.

Sun-Rising Washington's Chair

“I have often… in the course of the session… looked at that sun behind the President without being able to tell whether it was rising or setting. But now at length, I have the happiness to know it is a rising and not a setting sun.” – Benjamin Franklin

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Democrat’s Fight Club

Now that has Joey has told top democrats he’s willing to throw his hat into the 2020 ring I think they’re going to need a bigger ring.

koegel ring bolognaMy, that’s a big ring of bologna!

It seems that every Democrat in America who’s not a convicted felon is considering a run for the Presidency. And that’s not even counting Hillary.

According to The Hill:

Since Donald Trump’s election to the White House, Democrats have been anxious to pinpoint potential candidates up to the challenge of taking on the combative New York real estate mogul in 2020. Media speculation has run from the usual suspects like Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren, to those outside the political system, e.g., Mark Cuban and Oprah Winfrey.

for2020story_getty_1The Democrat Apprentices

While only one major, serious candidate has officially declared themselves for the Democratic presidential nomination, U.S. Congressman John Delaney of Maryland, identities of at least some of the remaining 2020 contenders were revealed by Politico Monday in a report citing sources with knowledge of meetings each had with former President Obama.

According to the piece, at least nine potential candidates have met with Obama, eight of whom visited the 44th president at his World Wildlife Fund office in Washington, D.C., as early as mid-2017.

I read the whole article and all I came away with was the question “WTH does Barack Obama have a World Wildlife Fund office in Washington, D.C.?” On further reflection though, I guess it makes an appropriate place to meet with Democratic presidential wannabes. It will likely be a very big cat fight.

demand a bigger ring

I say they should throw a few more celebrity apprentices into the mix – let’s make the Democrats fun again!

appprentice2Pictured: (l-r) Omarosa Manigault, Stephen Baldwin, Lisa Rinna, Dennis Rodman, Brande Roderick, Lil Jon, Penn Jillette, Donald Trump, Gary Busey, Bret Michaels, Claudia Jordan, Trace Adkins, La Toya Jackson, Dee Snider, Marilu Henner

We know they all know how to obstruct, now let’s see them fight.

baby fight club gif.2laughgif

Monday, January 14, 2019

Next!

I’ve lost track: what day of the ‘Trump Shutdown’ are we in now? Everyone losses track after the record has been broken.

Yes, people are being inconvenienced. Yes, people have been furloughed and are not getting their paychecks (yet). My brother-in-law is among them. Yes, it’s tough. Things are tough all over.

 The Guardian writes a sympathetic article titled ‘It's ruining people's lives”: federal workers count cost of shutdown.

White-collar workers face blue-collar blues.  Randy Erwin, president of the National Federation of Federal Employees, said, “This shutdown isn’t funny anymore. Right now, it’s ruining people’s lives.”

epa

Do you know what else is ruining people’s lives? Don Suber does:

Not having a border wall ruined a few lives as well. Ask the Angel Moms.

And by ruined I don’t mean seriously inconvenienced, I mean ruined.

officer singh

Don’t worry though, it seems the Democrats are all over this “manufactured crisis” and will get on it as soon as they get back from their scheduled all-paid vacay in Puerto Rico.

menenedez

“This year’s winter retreat promises to be our most widely attended yet with over 220 guests, including 39 Members of Congress and CHC BOLD PAC supporters expected to attend and participate!”

Trust that the remaining 171 “guests” are lobbyists. Nothing telegraphs concern quite like attending a “winter retreat” on a tropical island where rooms go for over $450 a night to rub elbows with lobbyists looking to buy your vote for their client’s pet projects.

Trust me furloughed Federal workers, the Dems feel your pain, as they always have. Which is to say… 

judge painNext!

Sunday, January 13, 2019

May the Light Be With You

It’s Sunday and when the sun comes up I’m confident it will be a glorious day in Park City. But for right now it’s pitch black and I’m feeling extremely lazy, so I offer today as an official open thread, accompanied by a few shots from residents published in the Park Record, the town’s newspaper of record. And let the Record reflect that the Record’s man-on-the-street survey this week asked “who do you think is responsible for the government shutdown?” The responses indicated two people thought that all the politicians in D.C. were responsible whereas everyone else reported with great enthusiasm that it was President Trump’s fault, alone. Just so you know what sort of town I’m living in. I’m actually surprised they found 2 people who thought the blame was to be shared, I suspect they were out of towners who just came to ski.

Anyway, here are today’s offerings: for those who love snow from a distance.

park City morningFirst light somewhere along the Willow Creek trail, h/t @saltau1

promontory park cityPre-sunset at Deer Valley, taken from Promontory, h/t @Promentoryclub

May the Light be with you all through the day.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

The State of Journalism: There’s Not Much Left to Explain

Somebody at The Washington Times thinks Journalism jumped the shark this month. I’d say they are more than a bit behind the Times.

While the Washington Times explains that the ludicrous “fact checking” by the MSM is not, in fact, checking at all:

That’s the problem in a nutshell. If your fact check consists of “this is true, but” you are no longer checking a fact. You are engaged in an argument, and therefore, you’re guilty of misleading your readers — which, we thought, was the opposite of your job description.

Meanwhile, America’s newspaper of record, The New York Times, having jumped the shark long ago continued on its ill-advised course of also screwing the pooch and printed this explosive headline: F.B.I. Opened Inquiry Into Whether Trump Was Secretly Working on Behalf of Russia which contained not a whit of new information.

The headline is a classic example of click bait and I’m certain that every liberal eyeball in the country has already clicked on some variation of the Times “report” hoping to see what they all believe to be “their truth” in print. But alas, no, it was simply an excuse to regurgitate all of the editors’ favorite witch hunting storylines. What a disappointment.

No evidence has emerged publicly that Mr. Trump was secretly in contact with or took direction from Russian government officials. (Again. But that doesn’t mean we’re giving up.)

Really, there’s not much left to explain.

calvin hobbes not much left to explain alien

Friday, January 11, 2019

Vaya con Dios, Senor Sánchez: And Thanks For All the Beans!

Now wait: before you jump to conclusions, call me a racist, report me to Facebook and YouTube, allow me to explain.

Look I know the news is compelling: Will PDJT declare a national emergency and dispatch the Army Corps of Engineers? Will Ruthie announce her retirement as rumored? Let’s not get caught up in speculation today when we should be honoring the memory of a truly great icon.

1200px-Juanvaldez.svg

I’m sad to report that the coffee farmer who embodied the essence of Colombian coffee with his portrayal of Juan Valdez - Carlos Sánchez Jaramillo of Medellín - died at age 83 in late December although his death wasn’t reported until yesterday.

A product of the real Mad Men of Madison Avenue, the fictional character Juan Valdez, a Colombian coffee farmer who often appears with his mule Conchita, was created by Doyle Dane Bernbach in 1958. Sánchez replaced the original Juan Valdez actor, José Duval, in 1969, and held the role until his retirement in 2006. 

juan-valdez-colombian-coffee

Note in this (bad quality) commercial from 1982 how far ahead of its time the message was.

Focusing on the special qualities of small farmer raised beans, wearing his aguadeño hat, carriel and cotizas, Juan Valdez became one of the first icons of international branding. As a pitchman you could say the Valdez character created global marketing. And the rest is history.

coffee-before-workout

RIP Carlos Sánchez, and thanks for all the beans! Even though it’s as addictive as cocaine it’s still far less expensive.

waiting for coffee

coffee seeds while sleeping

.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Tilting at Windmills on the Hill

We have just a little over a decade left to act and then - *poof* – the world as we know it is gone forever.

We have just 12 years to make massive and unprecedented changes to global energy infrastructure to limit global warming to moderate levels.

And while both Republicans and mainstream Democrats have refused to do anything to stop this horror show the next generation has stepped up to the plate:

Young activists, who will be forced to live with the ravages of climate change, find this upsetting. So they have proposed a plan of their own. It’s called the Green New Deal (GND) — a term purposefully reminiscent of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s original New Deal in the 1930s — and it has become the talk of the town. – Vox

So what the heck is it?

The exact details of the GND remain to be worked out, but the broad thrust is fairly simple. It refers, in the loosest sense, to a massive program of investments in clean-energy jobs and infrastructure, meant to transform not just the energy sector, but the entire economy. It is meant both to decarbonize the economy and to make it fairer and more just.

In order to implement this bold plan we will need some Millennials, educated in the Public Socialist Skool of Justice and Fairness for All. And what luck! We’ve got one!

aoc free stuff

The Green New Deal calls for a top-down revolution in the operation of American society so sweeping that it would be disturbing if it weren’t so wholly ridiculous. It shows all the thoughtfulness of a college sophomore pulling an all-nighter to write a term paper for his Millennial Socialism 101 class.

The Green New Deal, as explained in draft legislation to create a congressional committee to pursue it, would transition to 100 percent renewable sources of national power in 10 years. Since renewables only account for 17 percent of U.S. power now (7.5 percent from hydropower, which might not pass muster under the Green New Deal), the plan would require shuttering more than 80 percent of current sources of American power.

…It would build a new energy-efficient grid, itself a massive proposition.

It would upgrade every — not just many, not even most, but every — residential and industrial building for energy efficiency. There are 136 million homes in the United States.

It would eliminate emissions from industry, including farming, offering instead a vision of investment “in local-scale agriculture.”

It would eliminate emissions from transportation, which sounds like mandatory electric cars and hydrogen-powered planes.

Because the Green New Deal aspires to achieve all of socialism in one energy plan, it includes a federal job guarantee with a living wage and perhaps “basic income programs” and “universal health care.”  - New Republic’s take on Millennial Socialism

Whew! Quite the ambitious plan, even for an incoming Congressional freshman. So how are we going to pay for all this? “How many times do I have to tell you? The same way you pay for Medicare for all.”

aoc-medicareforall-notpieinthesky“You just pay for it.”

With other people’s money, off course!

So naturally, as I travelled through my favorite stretch of I-80 the other day, with its once vast, untarnished expanses now landscaped with massive numbers of these green giants -

windmills wy improving on god

I couldn’t help but think of AOC, and the original Don Quixote. Both mad, both tilting at windmills.      

Both thoroughly enjoying their excellent adventures.

“Destiny guides our fortunes more favorably than we could have expected. Look there, Sancho Panza, my friend, and see those thirty or so wild giants, with whom I intend to do battle and kill each and all of them, so with their stolen booty we can begin to enrich ourselves. This is nobel, righteous warfare, for it is wonderfully useful to God to have such an evil race wiped from the face of the earth."

"What giants?" Asked Sancho Panza.

"The ones you can see over there," answered his master, "with the huge arms, some of which are very nearly two leagues long."

"Now look, your grace," said Sancho, "what you see over there aren't giants, but windmills, and what seems to be arms are just their sails, that go around in the wind and turn the millstone."
"Obviously," replied Don Quijote, "you don't know much about adventures.”
- Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quixote

crashed windmill blade

Whoops, a big wind blew it over.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Prove Me Wrong

Home, home on the range
Where the deer and the antelope play
Where seldom is heard
An encouraging word
And the skies are still cloudy all day

(apologies to Roy Rogers)

Well, President Trump addressed the nation last night. The only surprise was that the networks decided to carry it. Somebody reminded them it’s not their place to determine whether the American people are permitted to hear the President’s words, whether they consider them to be “filled with lies” or not.  Chuck and Nancy handed network execs a graceful resolution by demanding their own version of Net Neutrality via equal time.

chuckie and nancyChuckie Schumer and Nancy “'I reject your facts” Pelosi

The only thing I got out of their joint statement was a newfound respect for the limitations of professional makeup artists. And boy, if SFN has her face stretched any further her hairline is going to be behind the crown.

Perhaps it was because of my nightmarish trip across the mountains of Wyoming yesterday - including two separate closures en route that doubled the normal travel time for that leg of the trip - but the two of them, frozen in time together like that, reminded me of the pronghorn antelope that one sees along the entire 400 mile stretch of I-80 through Wyoming: herd animals roaming at will. They consider it all their God-given free range even if it’s owned by a rancher trying to eke out a living by grazing cattle there.

Pronghorn-Antelope-Jumping-Over-Fence-Laramie-Valley-Wyoming-150421

The Pronghorns have absolutely no use or respect for fences either.

646734_orig

Chuck and Nancy also share the Pronghorn’s vocalization patterns:

  • Warning: snort-wheeze
  • Male courtship: high-pitched whine
  • Rutting male: roar
  • Fawn: bleat

Prove me wrong.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

More Wyoming And Less Washington, Please

We literally blew into Cheyenne last night. Wyoming never disappoints but yesterday was one of their epic High Wind Alert days, complete with Interstate closures to “light high-profile vehicles.” I’m not positive exactly what sort of vehicle that is but I’m pretty sure empty semi-tractor trailers qualify as you always see a few of them flipped over on the side of the road when the wind socks are flying parallel.

blowoverriskdec2016__002_

It was also inauguration day for Mark Gordon, Wyoming’s new governor. We should have known something was up as all the hotel rates were hyper-inflated. Another clue: when we checked in the lobby was filled with tuxedos and cocktail gowns.

Still, this was hardly the shindig an inauguration is in other states. It started with the swearing in ceremony early yesterday morning:

mark gordon

No, Governor Mark Gordon was not acting in solidarity with France’s "Gilets Jaunes" – although for some reason gas prices are about 30 cents higher here than any other state we’ve been through on this trip. Apparently the state capital building has been closed for renovations for over 3 years and safety restrictions required the vests. This is a bigger story than you might initially think: if the halls of government in Wyoming can be closed for over 3 years with no major complaints I think Washington better sit up and take notice. “Essential” employees might not mean what they think it means.

Other oddities associated with yesterday’s inaugural: the day started with a prayer service at Saint Mark's Episcopal Church. The newly minted governor took communion in his cowboy boots:

Gov. Mark Gordon takes communion during a prayer service at Saint Mark's Episcopal Church on the day of his inauguration Monday mornin

Based on the hem in his slacks I’m going to venture a guess that he  was not wearing a bespoke suit.

Gov. Mark Gordon takes communion during a prayer service at Saint Mark's Episcopal Church on the day of his inauguration Monday mornin

Don’t ask: I don’t know, I just notice these things.

The inaugural ball was held at the Little America ballroom, the swankiest place in town now that the historic Plains Hotel closed down. The new Guv sabered a bottle of champagne,

sabering

Wyoming style: with a Bowie knife.

sabering with bowie I think we need a little more Wyoming and a little less Washington. What do you think?

Monday, January 7, 2019

What’s More Newsworthy: An Uncharismatic A**hole or A Small Town First Responder Killed In The Line Of Duty?

I see on the news this morning that the first of this year’s self-congratulatory award shows took place last night. As we’ve come to expect and ignore, the Golden Globes produced the standard hate-spewing that accompanies every such gathering of the self-anointed illuminati. Last night Christian Bale decided to distinguish himself by thanking Satan as his inspiration in playing the role of  Dick Cheney in Vice, he went on to call both former vice-president Dick Cheney and Senate Leader Mitch McConnell “uncharismatic a**holes.” He would know.

Last year the Grammy broadcast lost 6 million viewers from previous years, I expect a similar decline this year. Nevertheless, if you tune into network national news on any network anywhere in America this morning you’ll see coverage of Mr. Bale’s performance.

But let me share a much more important story that won’t get any national coverage. I wouldn’t have seen it myself if I hadn’t specifically gone looking for it; this is why I did:

We switched drivers at Le Claire, Iowa yesterday and it was my turn to drive. Raj was playing with his phone when I noticed a few fire trucks, lights flashing, on the overpass up ahead in what looked like a standard traffic incident. A few miles ahead, at the next overpass, there was another collection of fire trucks and other vehicles, lights flashing, lined up. By the third overpass that also displayed a lights flashing assembly of fire vehicles you didn’t need to be an expert at recognizing patterns to know this was not a series of unfortunate incidents but rather a salute for a fallen fire fighter. First responders have a great tradition of respecting and honoring the loss in the line of duty of one of their own.

What was remarkable about this particular salute was its sheer length: it stretched from  Ankeny, outside Des Moines, to Clinton IA – a distance of 200 miles. We witnessed it from LeClaire to the west side of Iowa City. Some overpasses had just a few vehicles, others, near bigger cities, were lined the full length with emergency vehicles and ladder trucks, ladders extended, flags unfurled.

ankeny to clinton

The fallen hero was Lt. Eric Hosette, who lost his life Saturday in an explosion at a grain storage facility where he and other members of the Clinton fire department were battling a fire inside a silo. The overpass procession was accompanying Lt. Hosette’s body as it made its way home from the state medical examiner’s office in Ankeny. Fellow firefighter Adam Cain was also seriously injured in the blast and remains in the hospital in Iowa City.

KCCI-TV

Fire departments across the state lined the route along Interstate 80 to pay their respects to Hosette. - KCCI

Lt. Hosette leaves behind a wife and young daughter. He was only 33 years old. I don’t doubt for one minute that he did more good and contributed more value to this planet during his short life than the entire lot of self-absorbed actors gathered together last night to honor each other for play acting their way through life.

RIP Lt. Hosette, and thank you for your service.

P.S. In the “small world” department I note that Lt. Hosette was raised in Comanche, Iowa, which many of you may recognize as Creeper’s hometown before she pulled up stakes and relocated to Oklahoma with her beloved Guinea pig and orange Challenger.