Friday, January 31, 2014

Giuliani Walks Back Tossing Christie Under The Bus With His "Fifty-Fifty" Assessment

How likely was it that he'd change his mind
About where that comment went?
If you're asking me, that's a no-brainer: those
Odds were one hundred percent.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Guiliani Claims Odds Are Even Top New Jersey Politician Knew About GWB Lane Closures

Governor Christie --- this won't
Give you a lift. He
Says it's fifty-fifty. That makes
You shifty-shifty.

Owners Make Their Way Back To Cars Stranded On Atlanta Highways

I'm sure all the thousands of cold, weary motorists
Had been feeling abandoned and lost.
If temporary parking meters had been put in, they
Could've helped pay the cleanup cost.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

In Association With The Super Bowl, Chris Christie Takes On Sexual Exploitation In New Jersey

I would advise the governor to say, "Yes,
We've made significant gains.
We haven't ended human trafficking but
We have shut down a few lanes."

NY Republican Threatens TV Reporter After He’s Asked About Federal Campaign Donation Probe

Michael Grimm?
His future pickings
Look pretty slim.

A thin-skinned bully
Who's also violent,
A soon to be ex-pol
From Staten Island.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

At The End Of His SOTU Speech, Obama Honors Severely Wounded Army Ranger Cory Remsburg

Earlier on in the evening, this brave & young hero
Was momentarily glimpsed repeatedly tapping
His chest in approval of something he heard. Folks,
That's the elusive sound of one hand clapping.

Fun Facts About The Billionaire Who Linked The Wealthy To Victims Of The Holocaust

Tom Perkins, who compared recent political vandalism
To 1938's Kristallnacht,
Was convicted of involuntary manslaughter for killing
A sailor with his yacht.

What Makes America Great

Editor's Note: This is a poetry blog about politics and popular culture. Today's post, however, is written as a column. The topic I wanted to address is too unwieldy to contain in a poem. There are two possible reactions to this: 1) Tony, stick to poetry or 2) Tony, write some more prose.


In 2010, a group of Muslim students at the University of California at Irvine heckled the Israeli Ambassador to the United States. Long story short, these guys from the Muslim Student Union were tried for conspiring to disrupt a public meeting. They were convicted and fined but sentenced to probation. As you might imagine, the whole shebang caused quite a hullabaloo.

On "Real Orange, a Southern California local news show, Mark Petracca, Chairman of UCI's political science department, had a particularly good take on this incident. He, if memory serves, said the students did have a right to their free speech at this event. This doesn't mean, however, that he agreed with them. What bothered him was the students being upset that they'd been charged with anything. Petracca recalled Dr. King often being hauled into jail for civil disobedience and noted that he never complained about being arrested: that was part of the whole arrangement. The UCI students felt their cause was bigger than existing laws. Sorry, guys, but that's not the way we roll in the U.S. of A.

All of which brings us out of politics and into show business. At the last New York Film Critics Circle Awards dinner on January 6, Steve McQueen --- the distinguished Black director of "12 Years A Slave" --- was heckled. The director was called a "garbage man" and a "doorman" and the heckler was also heard saying, "F _ _k you. Kiss my ass."

Who was responsible? A Black film critic named Armond White whose outburst wasn't the first at such gatherings and whose fondness for contrarian views label him a first-class attention whore or perhaps just an attention slut.

Unlike the Muslim students in Irvine who admitted shouting down the Israeli ambassador, Armond refuses to own up to what he did and has even played the race card as a reason for his later being thrown out of the New York Film Critics Circle.

This incident bring to mind an earlier case of similar heckling but on an even larger scale. Five years ago today, President Obama's State of the Union speech was interrupted by a congressman who yelled "You lie!" at one of Obama's statements. A congressman from South Carolina, one of the most racist states in America. A congressman who was very fond of Strom Thurmond and initially argued that Esse Mae Washington-Williams did not have an illegitimate child with the legendary lawmaker. A congressman who later reluctantly admitted Williams did have a child with Thurmond but insisted that she should not have spoken about this because it tarnished the senator's legacy.

It would appear that White and Wilson have things in common: a fondness for rudeness in public and trying to embarrass Black men more acclaimed than they are.

Mr. White, who I gather is a conservative, may I suggest you contact Mr. Wilson and offer up your services as a speechwriter? I'm sure you're way smarter than the various Bubbas currently being paid to put words into Wilson's mouth.

White has been defended in some quarters by right-leaning critics who cite his being victimized by having "spoken truth to power." It's more like yelling insults at the powerful, which is not quite as noble an activity.

Both White and Wilson fail to grasp what it is that defines our country. It is not the right to worship as we wish or speak what's on our minds.

What makes America great is that we talk behind each other's backs.

No, this is not enshrined in any documents that were written by the founding fathers.

It's simply a de facto truth about our society. Talking behind backs allows a politeness to flourish that enables democracy itself and life as we know it to properly function. Without it, we have anarchy or, even worse, a modern world that resembles talk radio or cable TV news shows. Nobody really wants a steady diet of that.

Finally, I want to point out that White's insults in public also include saying "F_ _ k you!" to activist filmmaker Michael Moore at another New York Film Critics Circle Award dinner. Full disclosure: I am a lifelong Democrat and was a huge fan of Moore's "Bowling for Columbine" and "Fahrenheit 9/11." Armond, I have two words to pass along. The second is "you." The first is "thank." You see, ever since Moore supported Ralph Nader which helped Bush beat Gore, I've despised him. Good on you for giving him a hard time, even though writing a column about your dislike of Moore would (obviously) have been the more appropriate way to go.

Rodney King was onto something: maybe we can all get along.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Sochi Mayor Says There Are No Gay People In Sochi

In related news which you can feel free
To shout at passing cars
There are also no drunks in Russia ---
Just a whole lot of bars.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

TPM Headline: “Christie Won’t Address Bridge, Sandy Aid Allegations In Inaugural Address”

What a scoop! I didn't see that coming at all.
I was expecting something much grimmer
Like Chris insisting, "Before I speak, let's
Hear a few words from ... Dawn Zimmer!"

Friday, January 17, 2014

Surgeon General More Committed Than Ever To Curb Smoking

The man now in charge of America's public health needs
A new approach. I hope that he dispatches
Underlings to consider creating bold and dire restrictions
Regarding the sale of lighters and matches.

Actress Speaks Out For Republican Tim Donnelly’s Bid To Be California’s Next Governor

Maria Conchita Alonso's endorsement means a lot:
A helpful thing for her to do
(If it's 1997 and "The Running Man" happens to be
Playing at a theater near you.)

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

NSA Has Implanted Software On 100,000 Computers Outside Of The United States

So far, I would bet that all we've learned
Is that foreigners who have hate towards
America are (like us) fond of watching
YouTube videos of dogs on skateboards.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Wisconsin Lawmaker Will Pull Controversial Bill He Wrote With Wealthy Donor To Lower Child Support Payments

St. Representative Joel Kleefisch? Your change of heart
Is horribly misguided ---- ought you
Consider not breaking that old political law of always
Dancing with them that bought you?

Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Intersection of Autobiography & Geography

Doesn't it appear increasingly likely
That the bullying and portly
New Jersey governor will be undone
By what he did in Fort Lee?


Thursday, January 9, 2014

A Chatty Press Conference, A Silent Bridge Hearing

Alas, this just doesn't pass the proverbial smell test:
Christie repeatedly made all these denials with
Certainly he knew nothing but this was undermined
By his ex-Port Authority pal who took the Fifth.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Bridge Gridlock? Christie Now Insists, “I Was Duped.” (Yeah, Right.)

If you ever lie in the midst of another lie,
People may wind up wincing. One
Should always try to have that second lie
Be a really really convincing one.

Top Christie Official Named In Gridlock Retaliation

This won't help the governor's presidential bid ---
Some star power already fades under
Such scrutiny. He cancelled a speech today to look
For buses to throw a few aides under.

Rodman Sings And Plays Basketball At Birthday Party For North Korea's Leader

If one only considers Kim's uncle, his
Recent disappearance and death
It's more than kinda creepy for anyone
To become an evil dictator's BFF.


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

With $1.7 Billion Fine, JP Morgan Chase Settles Case For Missing Chance To Warn Authorities About Madoff

That fairly stupendous figure, when
All is done and said, tags
Them as raising a white flag for not
Having raised any red flags.

Monday, January 6, 2014

North Carolina Councilman Eyeing Congressional Run Quits Job With Resignation Letter In Klingon

He's clearly an illegal immigrant and from
The political scene should vanish.
David Waddell --- this is America, pal, and
Everybody here speaks Spanish.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Billionaire Head Of Home Depot Threatens Charitable Donations May Be Curtailed If Pope Continues His Support For The Poor

CEO Ken Langone is (of course) entitled to his opinion.
However, the one tiny thing it
Does here is undermine his message so it sounds like he's
Telling the Pontiff to, "Bring it!"

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Wal-Mart Recalls Donkey Product In China After Fox Meat Scandal

I would like to write about this
But the thing that bedevils
Me is just that this story is so
Wrong on so many levels.


Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Recreational Pot Industry Is Launched In Colorado

The "high" is for real in Rocky Mountain High ---
Drug foes see this as a virus as bad as Ebola
But savvy investors may feel this is the ideal time
To invest in companies that make granola.

Things To Anticipate During The 2014 Elections

Soccer moms are so 1996 --- referring to them
Almost 20 years later adds
Little, but the term that will gain some traction
Will be Duck Dynasty dads.

New Study: Older Teens Have Fled Facebook Because Their Parents Are There, Too

It kind of (no, completely) ruins any fun when you boast,
"I'm still hung over from getting wasted on Monday!"
And the next post is from your Mom who reminds you to
Be sure to bring all your laundry to brunch on Sunday.