I was covering a local candidate forum last night, and missed the latest GOP debate. I understand that in a brilliant move to round up Sarah Palin’s little lost lambs, Rick Perry located the American revolution in the 16th century. Awright. Between this, Herman Cain’s skatting on Uzbeki-beki-beki-stan-stan, Michele Bachmann’s vaccine-caused retardation and the seven or eight embarrassing moments yet to come in the next month, Barry’s got the second term all but sewed up.
Or not. Max Headroom Romney still floats above the fray. Way to pick your opponents, Mittens.
The local forum was put on by our chapter of the League of Women Voters. What mensches those folks are, arranging these deals every year so that none of us need go into the voting booth ignorant. Not that it makes much difference to most people, alas. Every term I discover how much my students — college students — don’t know about participatory democracy. Most of it is a function of simply not having lived very long; they don’t know how city councils work because they have never given a thought to city council, period. Nothing like buying property, paying taxes and having children to pique a person’s interest in public affairs. But I also wonder how much civics education is going on in schools these days. I took it in junior high. Today it might be wrapped into a general social-studies curriculum. I hope some of it is sinking in.
The warm weather will be leaving in a matter of hours, and it’s already cloudy and threatening rain. Leaves are falling like snowflakes, but it sho’ is purty out there.
I have quite a bit of tasty bloggage today, so let’s hop to it, shall we?
Your daily funny: Elizabeth Warren promises revenge vouchers.
Richard Dawkins, one of the most famous atheists in the world, was booked to appear tonight at a local fundraiser for the Center for Inquiry. But he was dropped at the last minute, when organizers learned — yes, learned — that he was an atheist. (From watching Fox News!!!) He’s complaining, but I’d consider myself lucky. If they can’t read a newspaper, they certainly can’t hire a decent caterer.
OID: A city so broke that the power company comes in and repossesses its streetlights. I didn’t think that was even possible.
Rochelle Riley is African-American, so this punchline doesn’t quite work, but it’s close enough for me, after reading this titanically dumb column: What do you mean ‘we,’ white man?
I haven’t been linking to NYT stories as much, knowing most of you can’t get behind the pay wall, but this story was so weird I can’t resist: Remember Professor Irwin Corey? “The world’s foremost authority?” I guess you’d call him a comedian, although as I recall, his schtick was to go on bubbly talk shows like Mike Douglas, Joey Bishop and maybe Carson, where the host would play straight man, asking him questions, which he would answer in long, convoluted bursts of verbiage. (We were so easily amused back then, but as I often think, watching contemporary comedy: It beats semen jokes.)
Anyway, Corey is still alive, lives in New York and is something of a panhandler, only the money he collects is sent to children’s charities in Cuba. He’s 97 years old. You really can’t make this stuff up, can you?
Off to work for me.