Tag: Stupid Politicians

Crossfire 1989

It's not the epic, classic performance of his 1986 "Fascist Theocracy" interview, but it's a pretty damn great conversation nonetheless: the government shouldn't get to decide what is and isn't art and determine funding based on politicians' personal tastes, and at any rate it's a pretty ridiculous sideshow given what an insignificant portion of the budget funding for the arts actually is.

This Will Probably Get Me Put on a Watchlist Somewhere

Dear Senator McConnell,

Hi, me again. You presumably recall my E-Mail of two weeks ago, where, discussing Senate gridlock, I closed by asking you, "Are you going to start filibustering your OWN bills now?"

For the record, Senator, that was intended as a joke. I meant it as an example of ridiculous hyperbole, the sort of crazy, offbeat hypothetical situation that a person of average intelligence would see as self-evidently ludicrous. The kind of thing where someone would read that and think, "Haha, filibustering his own bill. That is humorous, because no rational, sane human being would ever do such a completely asinine thing."

In other words, I was not actually seriously recommending that you start filibustering your own bills.

Despite the misunderstanding, I am absolutely flattered that you took my words to heart, and if I may have a moment of your time I have some more suggestions I would like you to consider.

  • Copyright -- please hire Derek Khanna, recently ejected from the Republican Study Committee, to address the subject of copyright reform. Unless you're as cozy with Hollywood lobbyists as your colleagues in the House, of course.
  • Corporate personhood -- please revert to pre-Santa Clara v Southern Pacific policy and clarify that the equal protection clause is intended to protect actual human beings, not abstract social constructs.
  • Science -- please acknowledge the existence of science, and pressure your colleagues to do the same.
  • Women, black people, brown people, gay people, and disabled veterans -- maybe your party could show some basic human decency to these demographics. Just a thought.
  • Filibuster -- please restore to pre-1975 rules, or eliminate entirely. The way the minority party has been abusing it recently is a joke. Literally.


Joan Rivers

Zappa on The Late Show with Joan Rivers, 1986(ish?).

I'd definitely say his conspiracy theories on AIDS are a swing and a miss, but everything else is pretty solid -- and hell, given that this would have been right around the time Iran-Contra broke, I can't say I blame anyone for believing the Reagan Administration was engaging in sinister and wildly implausible dealings.

Gridlock, and the Threat of More Gridlock to Come

Dear Senator McConnell,

I saw you on the news vowing that, if Harry Reid enacts filibuster reform, you will ensure that your caucus will dig its heels in and make itself even MORE intractable. I have a few questions regarding this attitude:

  1. I am in favor of filibuster reform, as I was in 2005, back when you were also for it (and Harry Reid was against it). Can you provide a reason why you changed your position on this issue other than your party losing the majority?
  2. You have previously stated that the sole purpose for your previous intractability was to ensure that Barack Obama would be a one-term president. Now that this strategy has proven, objectively and unambiguously, to be a failure, can you provide a reason why you believe you should become even MORE resistant to compromise?
  3. To tell the truth, your threat seems empty. How do you propose that your caucus could be any more resistant to compromise than it already has been these past two years? What do you propose to do that is worse than filibustering every single bill and nominee that your opponents bring to the floor? Are you going to start filibustering your OWN bills now?

Thank you.

Fascist Theocracy

Zappa's legendary 1986 appearance on Crossfire -- pardon the audio quality.

I'd read a (maybe partial?) transcipt before but never actually sat down and watched it in its entirety. It really is quite astounding just how aggressively ignorant John Lofton is -- incest is a major problem in America because of Prince? Seriously? Jesus Christ. Good thing conservatives had their priorities straight -- not like there was anything more important going on in early 1986.

Douchebag of Liberty Bob Novak seems downright moderate by comparison.

Judging by the E-Mails I routinely get from the Washington Times (thanks to foolishly signing up for a mailing list from a local Republican politician I knew professionally in 2006), they have roughly the same journalistic standards today as they did then. But that's a story for another day. (A story titled Is Obama Ruled by Demons?)

The parallels to recent debates about adult content in video games should, of course, go without saying.


That's GTK the Australian music show, not GTK the GIMP Toolkit.

June, '73. Yet another fine upload by tomtiddler1.

Many of the commenters observe, and I'm inclined to agree, that Frank seems to loosen up once he realizes the interviewer actually knows his music.

His comment on censorship in Australia is on the money -- that's still a real problem down there. Last I heard they had banned porn involving women with A-cup breasts, and still didn't allow an adults-only rating for video games.

More Parallel-Universe Politics

You know, I got to thinking last night.

If John McCain had been elected in '08, Jan Brewer would never have become governor. SB1070 would have been vetoed.

And a McCain Justice Department sure as hell would not have dropped an investigation into Joe Arpaio right before the damn 2012 election.

I'm beginning to see why candidates almost always win their home states: sure, I still think McCain would have been a terrible choice for the country...but I'm beginning to think Arizona really would have been in much better shape if he were President.

Then again, Russell Pearce would probably still be Senate President. So there's that.


So that's two terms McCaskill has won now entirely because a Republican said something monumentally fucking stupid.

She really should send fruit baskets to Akin and Limbaugh.


Today I saw a man walking down the street in a tricorn hat, powdered wig, and other assorted revolutionary garb, waving a placard explaining how our Founding Fathers really love Romney and Flake.

I decided not to make any banal jokes about Halloween being last week, mostly because that's so blisteringly unoriginal but also because really, wearing that getup in 92-degree weather is its own punishment.