The wait is over.

Oh, look: The long form is here! This will certainly put an end to birther foolishness once and for all. Let’s check… oh, let’s just drop in on a random site to see how the reaction is. How about Facebook?

Must have taken all this time to “produce” it.

OK, well, that’s not a surprise, is it? Now we can move on to the Afterbirther* movement, who will clamor for a sample of the president’s placenta, as well as a small amount of amniotic fluid, just to put the question to rest once and for all.

* “Afterbirthers” — an Onion story. But you believed it, for a minute, didn’t you?

Because yesterday was a killer and today will be the same, how about some good odds, ends and bloggage? Yesterday it occurred to me my phone might work better if I stripped out some of the old crap cluttering up the innards. I trashed most of the pictures. Here’s one I deleted — my husband with a pair of underpants on his head:

He doesn’t normally wear underpants on his head, but the metadata on the photo tells the story: Taken April 16, 2010. He was scraping and painting the boat bottom, an annual chore. He puts blown-elastic boxer shorts on his head to keep the paint dust out of his ears. If anyone at the boat yard thinks it’s odd, they don’t say anything.

It isn’t just Michigan that lost ground in the 2000s. A Dayton Daily News project looks as the “lost decade” in numbers, and they’re pretty scary:

Since 2000, Ohio’s total annual private payroll dropped by $22 billion, the examination found, a devastating economic implosion that hit every aspect of Ohio’s economy — from grocery stores, restaurants and retail to government budgets and beyond. As one telling indicator, the Ohio Department of Education said the proportion of youngsters receiving federally subsidized school lunches has reached a record high of four for every 10 students.

It’s the same old story:

Driving the lopsided trade is that the Chinese value their currency far below its true value, under-pricing U.S. goods. And that’s not all. Protracted trade disputes that threaten even more local jobs have ensnared key Miami Valley industrial employers such as NewPage and AK Steel.

“I have told one Chinese delegation after another that we don’t like the fact that you manipulate your currency,” (Gov. John) Kasich said in his State of the State address. “And it will stop.”

Really? It will? Send me a postcard.

I don’t follow sports much, although I should, given the amount of public money showered on these zillionaire team owners. But I appreciate a good sneery rant as much as the next gal, and this one, about Frank McCourt, former owner of the L.A. Dodgers, is pretty good:

Frank McCourt bought the Dodgers, a team he couldn’t afford, using money he didn’t have. In a deal that only could’ve happened in the 2000s, McCourt got a $145 million loan from Fox—the Dodgers’ previous owner—to purchase the team, using his parking lots in Boston as collateral. (McCourt defaulted on the loan, and Fox sold the lots.) The team, meanwhile, accrued more than $400 million in debt from 2004 to 2009. In perhaps the most egregious example of McCourt-style accounting, the owner charged his team rent to play in its own stadium, with the proceeds being used to pay the family’s personal bills.

In other words, Frank McCourt was just like every other rich jerk in recession-era America, not to mention the owners of the Mets and the Rangers. The Dodgers fiasco has allowed me to see the greed that caused the financial crisis up close. I don’t have massive investments, and I sold my house before the market crashed. Luckily, I didn’t have a ton to lose in this recession. Instead, I watched someone gamble hundreds of millions that weren’t his, on a baseball team I love, and come up snake eyes.

Via Hank, a great read that should be subtitled: You want the glamorous life of an author? Enjoy one writer’s remembrance of his Uncle Bill, who published 25 books you’ve never heard of:

Bill took great delight in turning any family occasion into a debacle, which I appreciated, kind of:

Florida, 1968–Family vacation. We climb a tower at a scenic overlook. When everyone else is climbing down, Bill grabs me by the ankles and hangs my scrawny, seven-year-old ass, Pip-like, above the Everglades. When I scream and squirm like a psychotic shrimp, he tells me now you know what it feels like to be scared.

Extremely entertaining read, with much truth within.

Tom & Lorenzo on another Michelle Obama outfit, but you should click through for the photos of Malia at the White House Egg Roll, who is apparently growing into a willowy beauty with an inseam as long as her father’s. When did these children do all this growing, says the woman who just went through three years of iPhone photos.

Finally, for you Detroiters: There’s a Critical Mass bike ride Friday night IF IT EVER STOPS RAINING, followed the next day by races at the Dorais Velodrome, both of which I plan to attend IF IT EVER STOPS RAINING. Details here.

But I don’t think it ever will. Stop raining, that is. On to the Mangle. Happy Wednesday, all.

Posted at 10:20 am in Current events, Detroit life |

74 responses to “The wait is over.”

  1. Jeff Borden said on April 27, 2011 at 10:34 am

    I rather wish the White House had NOT released the long-form birth certificate because it will do absolutely nothing to sway the birthers from their deeply held beliefs. Already, Captain Combover is braying that he is the guy who finally got the president to release it, so we’ll have yet more coverage of this goofball as he makes the rounds.

    Methinks Ohio Gov. Kasich suffers from illusions of grandeur if he thinks the leader of a slumping, Midwestern state is going to dictate monetary policy to the Chinese. It may poll well, but what can he do? It’s a national problem, but it’s a bit difficult to play tough guy to a nation that holds about $1 trillion in American debt.

    And, finally, schadenfreude is delicious this morning as I read about the right-wing Republicans getting roasted by their constituents at town hall meetings in their home district.Big, brave, bully boy Paul Ryan, who wrote up this crock, had to duck out a back entrance and leave in a different vehicle after his meeting in Kenosha, Wis. got out of hand yesterday.

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  2. Julie Robinson said on April 27, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Malia looks like she might already be taller than Michelle.

    Thanks to jefftmmo, we are having fun with the royal names.

    We just had our birth certificates out for passports, and I was struck by the differences from state to state. My hubby was born here in Indiana and has a vanilla certificate: name & date, parents’ names & birth states, and date of filing. Mine, from Iowa, has the hospital & doctor as well as extensive parental info: age, town of birth, race, current address, occupation (space for men only), and previous pregnancies/live births. That last one seems a little nosy.

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  3. Dorothy said on April 27, 2011 at 10:48 am

    I saw that Tom and Lorenzo piece yesterday when I checked in for their take on this Sunday’s “The Killing.” Malia is quite the looker, isn’t she? Willowy is an excellent choice of words to describe her. Hope she keeps her shoulders back and proudly carries that height like her mom does. Two of my older brothers used to remind me all the time to watch my posture and I’m glad they did. At 5’9″ I’m the shortest of the six daughters my parents had.

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  4. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on April 27, 2011 at 10:50 am

    Natal paperwork aside, I’m thinking the big stress in the White House today is Sasha & Malia begging for all four of them to get up at 4 am on Friday and go down to the Situation Room to use the really big high-def screens to watch the Royal Wedding ™, while Michelle says “6 am is plenty early enough for you girls on a school day,” and Barack rolls his eyes and holds the Washington Post Style section up a little higher.

    Note from last thread: I see Connie is a member of the House of Hanover. Or Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.

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  5. Snarkworth said on April 27, 2011 at 10:56 am

    I skimmed the post and assumed at first that Underpants Man was a representative of the Afterbirther crowd. It would seem about right.

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  6. Suzanne said on April 27, 2011 at 11:06 am

    I have no doubts that the official birth certificate will not stop the birthers for one second. Now, we will have the conspiracy of the conspiracy to produce the conspiritorial certificate that may or may not be real. Or something like that. It is, I guess, so much easier to believe in a grand conspiracy than to believe that sometimes stuff just happens the way it happens.

    As for the Obama daughter, they will be beating the boys off with a stick before long. She is a lovely girl.

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  7. LAMary said on April 27, 2011 at 11:09 am

    Lady Adele Skippy-Watchung here. I could also be Lady Hilda Skippy-Paradise. I think I like the second one better.
    I had NBC on while finishing my coffee and there were Matt Lauer and David Gregory being all amazed and shit about what a big deal the birth certificate announcement was. For Christ’s sake. NBC was giving Donald Trump air time all over the place to spout that crap. He’s got a show on NBC. I’m thinking there’s a connection. Could be.

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  8. Joe Kobiela said on April 27, 2011 at 11:13 am

    Glad you added “with a stick” or it could have got childish.
    As for the release of the birth certificate,I don’t think it would have been released if it wasn’t hurting him in the polls not to.
    Pilot Joe

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  9. ROgirl said on April 27, 2011 at 11:15 am

    MichaelG (from the last thread): we both have Smokies in our lineage. Distant relations, perhaps?

    My Smoky was a kitty.

    Trump ought to take this opportunity to disappear up his own asshole to find the source of the conspiracy.

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  10. Dorothy said on April 27, 2011 at 11:16 am

    “hurting him in the poles” = OUCH

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  11. LAMary said on April 27, 2011 at 11:21 am

    ROgirl and MichaelG, I currently have a dog named Smokey. If your Smokies were anything like him I’d say it’s a fine and noble line.

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  12. del said on April 27, 2011 at 11:30 am

    That was a great link via Hank about William Harrington.

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  13. Joe Kobiela said on April 27, 2011 at 11:37 am

    Yea Dorothy, I Know. Fixed it.
    Pilot Joe

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  14. Connie said on April 27, 2011 at 11:41 am

    I scrolled through the White House easter egg hunt pictures and was delighted to see President Obama reading one of my very favorite children’s books of all time “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom.” “A called b, and b called c, I’ll meet you at the top of the coconut tree. Chicka chicka boom boom, will there be enough room?” It is probably stuck in my brain forever.

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  15. coozledad said on April 27, 2011 at 11:42 am

    Yes, Obama is rightly concerned about his standing among folks who can barely rub enough brain cells together to get themselves through a storm door without breaking a finger.
    The statement accompanying the release makes it clear the administration was rubbing the birther’s noses in their own shit.
    Meanwhile, Linda is spot on with the Donald Trump/Hooker analogy, especially since he keeps snaking Dancin’ Dave Gregory’s Rolex.

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  16. Peter said on April 27, 2011 at 11:51 am

    Well, that will certainly put the birther issue to rest…

    At the tribune, Donald has already released a statement saying that he’s thankful that his hard effort has finally resulted in the long form release, so now that will “hopefully” put the issue to rest.

    In the comments section, I couldn’t believe how many people are saying that he should now release his school transcripts to prove he’s American. A few commenters have said that any reasonable employer requires those transcripts. I say:

    1. Really? I’ve been in the workforce for a mere 35 years, and the only times I needed a transcript were when I applied for a license. One state even took a xerox copy of my diploma as proof.

    2. And since when does anyone consider the guv’mint to be a reasonable employer? Criminy these nutjobs want it both ways!

    And a shout out to Pilot Joe – we visited SIU’s aviation college this past weekend – they’re building a new professional flight/engine plant complex, and it’s quite cool. We liked it a lot more than Purdue, although at Purdue you can walk from the dorm to the airport, and at SIU it’s about ten miles.

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  17. LAMary said on April 27, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    I hire people every day. I do not require transcripts. We confirm education and licensing but we don’t look at transcripts. Some hiring managers request them from applicants who are new grads, but they’re not a requirement.

    I just read that Gary Busey and Brett Michaels are backing Trump. Not sure if Meat Loaf has pitched in yet.

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  18. coozledad said on April 27, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Trump/Busey 2012! Let’s show ’em how America does dumbass!

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  19. prospero said on April 27, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Nancy, Is the Dorais Velodrome associated with Gus Dorais? Gus was the Detroiter at Notre Dame who is credited with Knute Rockne with inventing the forward passing offense in football. And coached the Loins for a few years in the 40s. And yes, I meant to type Loins. Good enough for Van Patrick, good enough for me. Van’s other announcing signature, was the curious phrase “he heard footprints” when a receiver alligator-armed a pass. Anyway, we lived across the street form Gus’s son and his family in a Pulte subdivision in Birmingham. His granddaughter Mary was the first person with whom I ever smoked pot (she triple dog dared, basically), and one of my brothers was involved in a heated romantic competition with a former friend over Mary’s sister, Patty, involving fistfights, much intrigue and purloined liquor.

    Van Patrick was a Detroit institution as a sportscaster, with a peculiar way with the English language, but never in the same universe with Ernie Harwell and his partner, George Kell. Kell was a perfect partner to Harwell, two country gentlemen describing baseball. Kell used the word ‘tommyhawked’ for a well hit ball, but kids in Detroit loved him for repeatedly pointing out that Norm Cash was “guarding the bag at first base”. Everyone who ever saw the great first baseman play knows that Cash did indeed “guard the bag”. Apparently, not trusting his cup completely, Stormin’ Norman always protected the jewels with his throwing hand, like one of those nutcases in Irish hurling. You can imagine the hilarity this induced in preteen baseball fans. Cash is also famous for a lifetime BA around .280, except for ’61 when he hit .361, with a self-incriminated corked bat.

    Trump dissapearing up his own anus is a very amusing image, ROGirl. Nothing left but the stuffed rodent rug. Joe K., if that was hurting Obama in polling, my automatic disenfranchisement program for nitwit and biased voters is more necessary to straighten out the country than even I thought. On the other hand, here in SC I can vote in the GOP primary, and I will vote for Rattail von Bankrupt, because he has a legitimate chance to win here. My bet is that Obama just thought it would be very funny to but a boot in the dumbass’ butt. And Donald thought he always got along with “teh Blacks”.

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  20. Jakash said on April 27, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    Another way this citizen of America does dumbass — I posted this on yesterday’s thread instead of here. So, I don’t know if this is against the protocol at nn.c, or not, but I’m sheepishly posting it again.

    Re: yesterday’s comments about the Chicago Reader. Phil Rosenthal of the Tribune has a column concerning the new look that the Reader is debuting today:,0,2258099.column

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  21. nancy said on April 27, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    By the way, I’m beholden to Barbara (4dbirds) for filing this essential brief on the niches and subniches of birtherism in this comment.

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  22. paddyo' said on April 27, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    I understand why the White House released the long form, but I hate that they did it. They just let the Errorists win . . .

    So Nancy, what you didn’t mention about that photo of Mr. Underpants was, it’s dated mid-April — which means, are you folks getting your royal yacht ready for another season? And if so, when may we subjects of your virtual realm expect to see that fave annual photo gallery of what you encounter on your first voyage after the winter snows of Queen Nancyland have finally melted away?

    I’m a member of the House of Hangover, BTW — Lord Wells Lucy-Alford. Now, where’s my wedding invitation?

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  23. Deborah said on April 27, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    Of course my right-wing sister sent me an e-mail this morning. Here’s part of her e-mail, “He spent a million bucks concealing it, so it must have been a ploy to make Republicans look stupid. Trump kicked up such a fuss, that the ploy wasn’t working anymore. People were beginning to wonder why Obama was acting so oddly. If you have nothing to hide, why hide it?”. When I asked her last week, she said she wasn’t a birther but she wondered why Obama didn’t go ahead and produce the long form to put an end to it. As if it will.

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  24. Jolene said on April 27, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    I love how the birthers make no sense even w/in their own twisted world. The idea, for instance, that Obama spent lots of money to hide his birth certificate is illogical. It’s not like he had to bribe Hawaiian officials to follow their own laws. Just what is it that he was supposedly paying for?

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  25. ROgirl said on April 27, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    When the transcript issue gets resolved, I’m waiting for Trump to start up his next cause celebre: that his dick is bigger than Obama’s, he can prove it, and if Obama won’t release his statistics then he’s afraid because he can’t possibly measure up.

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  26. beb said on April 27, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    Nancy: “— my husband with a pair of underpants on his head:” — One of my favorite lines from Rising Arizonia is the shop-keeper being robbed saying, “son, you got a panty on your head.”

    Suzanne wrote: “As for the Obama daughter, they will be beating the boys off with a stick before long. She is a lovely girl.” — Nah, they’ve got the Secret Service to do that.”

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  27. prospero said on April 27, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    This looks like a pretty surefire Mothers’ Day gift.

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  28. Julie Robinson said on April 27, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    Tom Ashbrook’s guests are doing a masterful take-down of Ayn Rand right now on On Point. It’s worth finding the podcast.

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  29. Linda said on April 27, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    “He spent a million bucks concealing it, so it must have been a ploy to make Republicans look stupid.”

    Deborah, I campaigned for Obama, and I almost suspect it’s true. Can the Republicans look that crazy/stupid without some scheming and egging on? Apparently so.

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  30. MaryRC said on April 27, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    I kind of wish the White House hadn’t released it, too, if only because it gives the Donald a reason to crow. You’d wonder why he’s so proud of this but of course he has no shame — he made the White House blink, that’s all he cares about. I just wish someone this morning had asked that blowhard what his “investigators” had found in Hawaii that was so “incredible”.

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  31. Peter said on April 27, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    By the way, regarding Phoebe Snow – that wasn’t the only rock obituary from yesterday, as one of my favorites, Poly Styrene from X-Ray Spex checked out.

    I know I’m middle aged, because most of their You Tube videos have really poor production values and are hard to listen to now, but their The Day the World Turned Day-Glo, Identity (Crisis) and Germ Free Adolescents are something.

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  32. MichaelG said on April 27, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    That “Birth Certificate” is an obvious fake.

    ROgirl, yes, Smokey was a cat. I once read somewhere that “Smokey” was one of the two or three most common cat names.

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  33. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on April 27, 2011 at 2:25 pm

    Whittaker Chambers said all that needed to be said about Ayn Rand in the pages of National Review, when he reviewed her masterwork by saying “From almost any page of Atlas Shrugged, a voice can be heard, from painful necessity, commanding: ‘To a gas chamber — go!'”

    He did not like it, nor her.

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  34. Bitter Scribe said on April 27, 2011 at 2:33 pm

    The new wingnut trope seems to be that it’s Obama’s fault for 1) not releasing this before and putting the controversy to rest and/or 2) releasing it now instead of fixing the economy. Nothing this man can do will satisfy these individuals.

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  35. MaryRC said on April 27, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    That article about Uncle Bill was fascinating and I realised that I have heard of him before. He’s the guy who claimed to have ghost-written Margaret Truman’s mysteries. There have always been rumours that they were ghost-written and she always denied them, but I think he was the only person to have actually come forward and claimed to be her ghost-writer.

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  36. prospero said on April 27, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    Trump made the White House blink? Or, they got tired of the jerk and decided to humiliate him. Didn’t Trump say he’d release his tax records if he got a look at the birth certificate. And aside from the President’s mom’s signature and that of the attending physician, what new information is revealed in addition to the Certificate of live birth? I suppose they could have waited until Trump turned up some forged ‘evidence’ from his OJ-led team of crack investigators to just obliterate Senor Bankruptcy.

    And puleeze, let’s make sure to discriminate between Mr. Underpants and Mr. Magic Underpants.

    And Peter, here ya go: Great band. Amazing voice out of a little kid with braces.

    Edit: Even better song.

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  37. brian stouder said on April 27, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    Well, all things considered, the young folks and I have picked a good night to go off to IPFW and hear Country Joe McDonald and Tom Rush speak (and maybe sing a little?)

    ‘I Feel Like I’m Fixin’ to Die Rag’, indeed

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  38. Little Bird said on April 27, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    Do the rightwingers really need any help to look stupid? I thought they were doing a pretty good job of that without help.

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  39. nancy said on April 27, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    I was busy last night when you posted your story about what happened in Meijer, Brian, but it reminded me of taking Kate there when she was still a baby. She was sitting-up-in-the-cart age, but not walking — somewhere between 6 and 10 months or so. An old man walked up to us and pressed a caramel candy into her hand, and made some brief remark to the effect of “what a cute kid.” I was appalled; never mind the permission thing, has this guy never heard the term “choking hazard?” Fortunately, I took it away before she even knew what it was, and the man had already melted off into the crowd. What is it about that store?

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  40. Julie Robinson said on April 27, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    MaryRC, the books continue well after Margaret Truman’s death, but “based on materials she had already written”, or some such nonsense.

    Here are a few of the nuggets I gleaned from the On Point hour about Ayn Rand. She was a bitter and unpleasant person who drove away most of her acquaintances by the end of her life. Although she believed tobacco warnings were a government conspiracy, she died from lung cancer, and was accepting public assistance despite decrying such programs. She was fiercely anti-religion and compared Christianity to communism.

    Allen Greenspan was a true believer in Rand’s ideas, and when he testified to Congress about the Lehman Brothers and bank collapses of 2008 he was genuinely surprised since he thought her principles were being followed so well by those in charge.

    I don’t know about y’all, but our 401K is still not quite back to its 2007 level.

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  41. Dexter said on April 27, 2011 at 3:27 pm

    Horribly inappropriate behavior by the thirty year old man at Meijer, Brian. Security tapes should be reviewed and the offender should be banned from the store.
    I would guess that if the guy had slapped the mom, and he had been caught, he’d do about six months locked up. The baby was mugged, really, and had no defense. The candy bar thing was just very creepy. Damnation.

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  42. Dorothy said on April 27, 2011 at 3:58 pm

    Meijer in Newark Ohio (a place I’ve only gone to once) was inhabited by a very large number of folks who looked like they were trolls or druids or something. Gave Mike and I the shivers. Maybe it was just a full moon the evening we went there about 3 years ago.

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  43. prospero said on April 27, 2011 at 4:06 pm

    The spin on Fux News appears to be that Obama pulled a dirty trick by letting the yahoos rant on and on instead of stuffing big plugs of baccy in their salivating, snaggletoothed maws several months ago.

    Raising Arizona, with the panty line. I really can’t think of a more hilarious movie. Especially the most ineptly planned and executed convenience store robbery of all times. And the final scene, HIs dream of the future, is positively elegiac.

    and the musical theme is great. I read that somebody is talking about remaking this movie, which would be an inexcusable transgression.

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  44. paddyo' said on April 27, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    What really strikes me about that trailer, Prospero, is that it is wall-to-wall hilarious for nearly 2-1/2 minutes, and there were still great lines and scenes left that didn’t make the cut. By contrast, half-minute-max trailers for today’s marginal screen comedies wring out every last available semi-decent laugh and still have filler room left.
    The Cohen Brothers are simply brilliant . . .

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  45. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on April 27, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    Dorothy, I’m often in that Meijer’s security room; they have more cameras than a . . . royal wedding.

    Yet people still insist on trying their luck at shoplifting, in groups, in gangs, most often as families.

    But the head of security says it doesn’t do much for your appreciation of human nature to take your lunch break in that room, with 16 little screens and two big ones. You see stuff. But I’m sure, from having reviewed far too much of that video, that the scene at the register as described would not hardly even show. There’s no audio, and at most you’d see a cheerful fellow hug a small child and then dash off.

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  46. Jolene said on April 27, 2011 at 5:05 pm

    One more comment on Trump: It’s an obvious point, I guess, but what a child he is! When grown-ups want to say they are proud of themselves for something, there’s usually some pretense of modesty, typically manifested in an “aw, shucks” demeanor, expressions of thanks to all the little people who helped along the way, or gratitude for good luck. But not Trump. His initial statement was, “I’m very proud of myself because I’ve accomplished something that no one else could.” He couldn’t have made his juvenile self-centeredness more obvious if he’s said, “Look at me, Mom. Look what I did!” What a pig.

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  47. prospero said on April 27, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    Paddyo’ as hilarious as Raising Arizona is, it is also quite heartfelt and warm and insightful. HI’s dream of young Nathan’s Christmas and future athletic success is simply beautiful, and not exactly what you might expect from a couple of guys as apparently cynical as them Coens, unless you’ve payed close attention to the commemorative stamp subplot in the midst of madness in Fargo, or the unbearable lightness of being of George Clooney’s character in O, Brother. I mean, before he gets blowed to smithereens, human frailty and vulnerability is clear in the expression of the warthog from hell when he sees the grenade pin in HI’s hand, and HI’s sorrowful attempt to apologize is very sad.

    As far as being entertaining for 150 seconds non-stop, which it is, that trailer puts me in mind of sitcom commercials in which nothing makes me crack a smile. Never saw Friends and have no interest in the current crop, which from the flaccidity of the gratuitously rude jokes in their promos, just don’t get it. These bimbo productions are repeating crap stolen from Three’s Company. First two seasons of Seinfeld were mildly amusing, until the infantilism and onanistic behavior of the characters got so annoying a couple of minutes exposure could make me feel like nuking the set. Frasier certainly had it’s moments. Best, if not the only watchable half-hour comedy on TV these days: easy, that would be M*A*S*H reruns.

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  48. prospero said on April 27, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    Jolene: Every time I see Trump’s piggy face, it reminds me of the infamous CSI episode called King Baby, about a casino tycoon that needed to wear diapers and breastfeed to be satisfied sexualy. Donald Trump, diaper fetishist? Wouldn’t be surprising.

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  49. Jolene said on April 27, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    Have you all been watching the Shiba Inus? Their little bodies are so round and their legs so ineffectual that they look like sausages.

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  50. LAMary said on April 27, 2011 at 5:26 pm

    The line about “yodas and shit” in Raising Arizona still makes me laugh every time I hear it.

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  51. baldheadeddork said on April 27, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    Nancy – sweartoGawd my first thought when I saw the picture involved Tim Allen, another public drinking/DWI charge, and The Smoking Gun.

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  52. Jeff Borden said on April 27, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    It looks like filmmakers behind “Atlas Shrugged, Part One,” are going Galt on us. See below:

    Twelve days after opening “Atlas Shrugged: Part 1,” the producer of the Ayn Rand adaptation said Tuesday that he is reconsidering his plans to make Parts 2 and 3 because of scathing reviews and flagging box office returns for the film.

    “Critics, you won,” said John Aglialoro, the businessman who spent 18 years and more than $20 million of his own money to make, distribute and market “Atlas Shrugged: Part 1,” which covers the first third of Rand’s dystopian novel. “I’m having deep second thoughts on why I should do Part 2.”

    “Atlas Shrugged” was the top-grossing limited release in its opening weekend, generating $1.7 million on 299 screens and earning a respectable $5,640 per screen. But the the box office dropped off 47% in the film’s second week in release even as “Atlas Shrugged” expanded to 425 screens, and the movie seemed to hold little appeal for audiences beyond the core group of Rand fans to whom it was marketed.


    “Why should I put up all of that money if the critics are coming in like lemmings?” Aglialoro said. “I’ll make my money back and I’ll make a profit, but do I wanna go and do two? Maybe I just wanna see my grandkids and go on strike.”

    Meanwhile, I must again share the best analysis of AynRand’s fans I’ve ever read, courtsey of the blog Kung Fu Monkey:

    There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.

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  53. prospero said on April 27, 2011 at 5:42 pm

    Never heard of the breed before, but Shiba Inus grow up to be very handsome doggies with lupine faces.

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  54. prospero said on April 27, 2011 at 5:54 pm

    I tried to stand up and fly straight, but it wasn’t easy with that sumbitch Reagan in the White House. I dunno. They say he’s a decent man, so maybe his advisors are confused.

    HI McDonough

    How about, Would you shop at a store called Unpainted Huffheinz?

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  55. brian stouder said on April 27, 2011 at 6:00 pm

    Jeff tmmo’s point about Meijer security is well taken; indeed, one almost suspects that the fellow is counting on precisely that dynamic – the “what the hell just happened?” confusion.

    And indeed, I’d be much more ambivalent if it had been an old guy rather than a young one.

    But on the subject of stores with strange vibes, I cannot get used to wandering into WalMart’s grocery area, and passing aisles and displays of booze. Not just beer and wine, but hundreds of bottles of hard liquor amidst the potato chips and soda pop displays. It just seems wrong to have that stuff, not cordoned by anything, right where our 6 year old wanders. Their used to be a law against that, wasn’t there?

    Asude from that, I am now 3/4’s through Sorkin’s Too Big to Fail, and it is equal parts educational and confusing. He popped up on Lawrence O’Donnel’s show last night, and he genuinely made me feel a little sick.

    I love the guy, mind you; but he is emphatically pointing to our next economic catastrophe – which is the looming debt-ceiling vote.

    He points out that if a deal isn’t publicly made by about the end of May (ie – 40 days from now), the wheels will begin their inexorable down-turn.

    His book charts the cascade of wholly-UNintended consequences from the initial series of decisions that lead to allowing Lehman Brothers to fail.

    If our congress decides – for whatever reason – to fool around with the debt ceiling and the “full faith and credit of the United States”, then indeed, evidence to the contrary notwithstanding, we are NOW living in the “good ol’ days”, and we’re headed over a major cliff.

    I am almost ready to believe that there is a political (not to say hateful, racist, and utterly nihilistic) impulse afoot, amongst some, to even the historical score (re Bush, and for that matter, Hoover) and actually FOSTER another economic crash – out of unalloyed spite for President Obama.

    We shall see

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  56. nancy said on April 27, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    I’m watching the puppies, even though they’re not very interesting at the moment, mainly because there’s always one sleeping on its back with its feet straight up in the air.

    It keeps me from thinking about financial collapse. They are my Kardashians.

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  57. LAMary said on April 27, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    “They are my Kardashians…”
    The puppies are superior in so many ways. No sex tapes for one thing, and no discussions of body part waxing, oral sex, pimping of younger siblings, and procurement of absurdly expensive cars.

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  58. paddyo' said on April 27, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    I’m sure the K-girls are working on a vanity canine breed with all those qualities . . .

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  59. Suzanne said on April 27, 2011 at 6:43 pm

    Brian (#55),
    “Too Big To Fail” thoroughly fascinated and frightened me. You will get to a quote at near the end in which one big kahoona basically says that the investment firms were like children, unable to stop themselves from screwing up and needed someone to reign them in long before anyone tried. And these people are paid untold millions for ????

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  60. MichaelG said on April 27, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    I don’t know what the procedures are but I am certain that Mr. Obama’s background was very thoroughly checked by the FBI or the Secret Service or some government agency the moment he chose to run for the senate and more thoroughly rechecked when he decided to run for the presidency. It’s just incomprehensible that he and everybody else in the mix isn’t vetted for a whole laundry list of things that could cause problems the moment their hat goes into the ring.

    I remember when I was a twelve year old kid we had an army colonel as a neighbor. He was up for promotion to general and the FBI interviewed my father in the course of a background investigation. Shit, they even investigated me for the secret clearance I had while I was in the army.

    Hasn’t it occurred to any of these dolts that Obama’s legitimacy was well and thoroughly investigated and established long before his name appeared on the ballot?

    Brian, don’t grocery stores in Indiana sell booze? Every store in California has all the beer, wine and hard stuff right out on the shelves.

    I buy wine at Safeway and at Taylor’s market all the time. Also Cost Plus, Trader Joe’s and Raley’s and others. Just a plug, but in California we probably have the largest selection of foreign and domestic wines and the lowest prices anywhere in the world. Filling up my car is another story.

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  61. LAMary said on April 27, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    MichaelG, Catherine and I are paying ridiculous prices for gas and it goes up pretty much every day. Regular is now close to 4.30. It was 4.17 a week ago at the same gas station. Premium is 4.47 or more. It makes you really think about any optional driving you might be doing.

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  62. alex said on April 27, 2011 at 8:07 pm

    Greetings from Lord Clarence Shadow-Winter.

    At first I was a bit dismayed that Barack Obama felt the need to appease a bunch of ridiculous shitheads who aren’t going to vote for him anyway, but I think he drew much-needed attention to the fact that his opponents are liars about this and plenty of other things and that the media are irresponsible in letting them get away with it.

    I’m still chortling at John Boehner’s lame assertion that it’s not his place to tell the American people what to think, when that’s exactly what he does every day when he willfully misrepresents just about anything that Democrats or the administration have done.

    I’m looking forward to our local primaries next week. In the GOP mayoral contest it’s pretty much a race between an empty suit and a Michelle Bachmann clone who’s leading slightly in the polls. Four years ago, when an unelectable right-winger pulled a stunning primary upset here, the Republican establishment defected and actively joined the campaign of the Democrat now in office. At the moment, the raging rube wing of the local GOP is giddy with delight and refuses to recognize that history is going to repeat itself. Good thing they’re such slow learners. It’s going to take at least a few more Democratic administrations, both locally and nationally, to right the wrongs of the last thirty years.

    On edit: MichaelG and LAMary, gas here in Hoosierland has been around $4.17 the last several days. And yes, we finally do have alcohol in the grocery stores but the blue laws still apply on Sunday sales. Regarding security clearances, I remember as a child when the FBI came to interview my parents about a neighbor who worked for a military contractor; they thought the whole charade was pretty silly and probably gave too much latitude to anyone who might have an axe to grind. Fortunately for the neighbor, he was well liked and nobody ever saw him drunk or bringing hookers home while the wife was away.

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  63. MichaelG said on April 27, 2011 at 10:12 pm

    Yeah, I know, Mary. I was down in Riverside the other day. It’s a tad less here, but I’ll have to check tomorrow. As you say it’s going up day to day. The oil companies just announced their usual obscene record profits, but Boner says we shouldn’t tax them because they’d just raise prices more. So I guess what he means is that record profits on top of record profits for the oil companies are good for consumers if not for airline and trucking companies.

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  64. Deborah said on April 27, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    I read something this morning somewhere on the Internet that Chicago has the highest gas prices in the nation, more than LA and NY. I’m glad I mostly walk.

    Those puppies just melt your heart.

    The next book I download on my iPad is going to be “Too Big to Fail”.

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  65. joodyb said on April 27, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    thank you, jeff borden, for Kung Fu Monkey.

    advisory: i understand that in certain areas of the country, humane society kennels are overrun with Shiba Inus because people can’t handle an ultra-smart and often contrary adult. One of the six original Japanese dog breeds, it was bred to hunt, and it needs something to do, EVERY DAY. It requires intense obedience training at an early age. They are said to be very loyal family dogs but often terrible with strangers.

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  66. brian stouder said on April 27, 2011 at 10:37 pm

    Deborah – it’s a great book. In the print-version, there is a cast of characters at the front, listing key figures from each of the major banks and investment firms and law firms and governmental agencies, and the Fed. I leaf back to that listing quite often; presumeably in an e-book one could simply click back, eh? (The book would benefit from a glossary of the arcane financial terms that constantly pop up; they get defined when they first appear, and then that’s it)

    As for the Omnibus Lecture Series with Tom Rush and Country Joe McDonald, Grant bailed on us, but Shelby came along with me to IPFW. It was the last Omnibus lecture of the year, and it was superb. I was expecting yapping and reminiscing, and maybe as a bonus – a little bit of music.

    Instead, we were treated with lots and lots of tremendous music, wherein the two artists took turns standing there with their accoustic guitars and tapping feet, and affecting lyrics. Joe McDonald started right out with a cheer, which Shelby very matter-of-factly thought was going to spell out F-U-N, but which did not. (I think I laughed myself to tears, when – with wide eyes – she expressed her sincere shock at what Country Joe spelled out.)

    (he looked a little older than in this video)

    Well, come on all of you, big strong men,
    Uncle Sam needs your help again.
    He’s got himself in a terrible jam
    Way down yonder in Vietnam
    So put down your books and pick up a gun,
    We’re gonna have a whole lotta fun.

    And it’s one, two, three,
    What are we fighting for ?
    Don’t ask me, I don’t give a damn,
    Next stop is Vietnam;
    And it’s five, six, seven,
    Open up the pearly gates,
    Well there ain’t no time to wonder why,
    Whoopee! we’re all gonna die.

    Joe was great; he happily insists that the crowd shall sing along with him, and so we all did. And after Joe lead us through several songs, including This Land is Your Land, then Tom stood up, and sang several affecting songs, including this one, which was just wonderful (although he, too, looked a little older than in this Youtube!)

    Looking for my wallet and my car keys,
    Well they can’t have gone too far;
    And just as soon as I find my glasses
    I’m sure I’ll see just where they are.

    Supposed to meet someone for lunch today,
    But I can’t remember where
    Or who it is that I am meeting:
    It’s in my organiser ~ somewhere.

    I might have left it on the counter;
    Maybe outside in the car.
    Last time I remember driving
    Was to that Memory Enhancement Seminar.

    What’s that far-off distant ringing
    and that strangely familiar tone?
    Must be the person I am meeting
    Calling me on my brand new cordless ‘phone.

    When we went to the show, I wasn’t sure what to expect – and it turned out to be a great tonic. In the discussion part, they discussed current events a little bit, to the very great delight of the crowd, and handled several surprisingly good audience questions.

    Shelby and I laughed and yapped all the way home.

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  67. brian stouder said on April 27, 2011 at 11:23 pm

    By the way, it is raining, raining, raining here, right now – which means its time to go to bed.

    And – Nance’s photo of her husband looks like proof that Sharia Law is being enforced in Detroit.

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  68. Catherine said on April 28, 2011 at 12:13 am

    $4.39 for regular at my Arco, usually the cheapest. What Mary said about optional driving. Carpools, my lovelies, I say to my daughters.

    Brian, I loved your account of Country Joe and Tom Rush. It brought back memories of my high school BFF’s dad playing that song on his banjo (ukelele?) while we all sang along at a demonstration against the nuke plant. Good times! Visualize whirled peas!

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  69. MaryRC said on April 28, 2011 at 12:20 am

    Julie, it will be interesting to see if the Margaret Truman mysteries continue after “Uncle Bill”‘s death!

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  70. Dexter said on April 28, 2011 at 12:54 am

    Gasoline is $3.97 here in Northwest Ohio, while my daughter checked in from Las Vegas, Nevada, reporting $3.98 per gallon there.
    She is saving a little gasoline by riding this around these days.

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  71. nancy said on April 28, 2011 at 12:57 am

    Ventured into Detroit in hopes of paying less, but found nothing cheaper than $4.10. $55 to fill up my Passat. And I still see people around here driving Suburbans. Insane.

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  72. Dexter said on April 28, 2011 at 1:32 am

    To avoid depression I have been filling my vehicle when I have burned off just 1/4 tank. It’s $30 for a quarter-tank.
    I keep finding myself having daydreams of Portland, Oregon.
    That city has a progressive outlook, the mayor is a visionary, hoping for 25% bike ridership into the downtown area. They also have streetcars which truly serve the purpose and are not glitzy tourist attractions.
    They are working on turning streets into biking boulevards by utilizing traffic calming, achieved by “street furniture”, which slows traffic by making cars avoid huge planter boxes full of trees and flowers. Hey, it works in Berkeley, California.
    Anyway, I have been reading a lot about Portland for about a year. It sounds damn livable.

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  73. Dexter said on April 28, 2011 at 8:40 am

    Here’s an isolated link to Detroit’s Critical Mass facebook page.

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  74. prospero said on April 28, 2011 at 9:08 am

    Subsidies and tax benefits to oil companies are still in place and still driving deficit spending. Meanwhile, gas is cheaper in the USA than in any other non-oil-producing country in the world. GOPetroleum hos treat public transportation as if it were devised by Joe Stalin, and expects to use gas prices no American President could possibly do anything about (short of imposing windfall taxes against the oil company profiteers, which would help fiscally, but have a negative effect on pump priices). If their were a national IQ it would be somewhere south of Educable and Trainable, resting on Gullible and Infantile.

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