and now, a token “retirement party” placeholder

this weekend, i am sad to admit, has been devoted to the celebration of old(er) people i know retiring. specifically, this means things like “janklow must dust off his alcohol awareness training certification and work as a bartender for no money at all because of familial bonds or some shit like that” and “janklow is too old not to be exhausted from these shenanigans in a way that prevents him from working on this website.” i mean… we’re winding this thing down, i think we all know. but whatever, nothing happening here this week.

presidential election 2012 part ii: after the deluge … of conservative emotions

so recently, we had this election and Obama won, which is good for him in the sense that, hey, he’s still the president and that’s pretty cool, they tell me, but also bad for him in the sense that i cannot imagine the stress of the job is good for ANYONE. i like to imagine that, for example(s), before their respective elections to the presidency, Richard Nixon was a pleasant human being and Lyndon Johnson was an attractive man: obviously, these are impossible fictions, but, you know, they’re impossible fictions that possibly contain comedic value.

anyway, i don’t really want to dwell on Obama’s reelection because then we might get into a serious discussion of “what this means for America” and “am i somehow going to be able to manage to give a damn about the concept of participatory democracy in the future for reasons that aren’t necessarily related to the presidential election” and blah blah blah. what i ACTUALLY want to focus on are the absolutely insane reactions to this election from Republicans (or conservatives, at least).

Donald Trump + Victoria Jackson = DREAM COUPLE
Donald Trump and Victoria Jackson: a match made in FUCKING INSANE HEAVEN

Donald Trump and Victoria Jackson melt down on Twitter

now, to be fair, this is not exactly watching the most stable individuals suddenly lose it; furthermore, i should admit that i believe Twitter was developed by top scientists to make celebrities and politicians post stupid shit on the internet. still, we’re talking about some fairly high-level insanity here. let’s start with Victoria Jackson, who i guess was a comedic actress for a short period of time before transforming into a conservative Christian with access to the internet:

Victoria Jackson @vicjackshow: “I can’t stop crying. America died.”

i suppose this isn’t THAT insane of a reaction if you’re incredibly disappointed in the election results because you think Obama’s going to be bad for the nation, but here’s what i don’t understand: these conservatives LOVE to talk on and on about how exceptional America is and how anyone who doesn’t acknowledge this is a traitor (or worse, a LIBERAL), so i have to ask this why i should believe such an exceptional country can be KILLED by the reelection of Obama. yeah, i know, it’s weird of me of all people to criticize someone’s hyperbole, but i doubt she’s exaggerating for effect.

Victoria Jackson @vicjackshow: “The Democrat Party voted God out and replaced Him with Romans 1. In the Good vs. Evil battle…today…Evil won. Thanks a lot Christians, for not showing up. You disgust me.”

observation: somehow, i suspect the people who are excited to vote against Obama for religious reasons ARE the guys who showed up and voted in solid numbers (at least for however many of them there are)… so pray tell, why are the voters who you’re theoretically in lock-step with the ones that disgust you? shouldn’t you be disgusted by all the sinful non-Christians out there who voted for Barack “Lord of Darkness” Obama so that they’d keep getting government funding for their black magic rituals?

okay, so, at the very least, it appears that Jackson does not have sound arguments in her favor. next up, Donald Trump:

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump: “Lets fight like hell and stop this great and disgusting injustice! The world is laughing at us. This election is a total sham and a travesty. We are not a democracy!”

okay, first off, if the world is laughing at us, i have to believe a large percentage of the reason is the fact that a lot of Americans take Trump seriously when he talks about politics or business or anything else. second, look, despite the fact that i love to make the Obama=Romney argument, mainly to make people who love or the other of those guys GO CRAZY, i get the fact that one might have strong feelings about the victory/defeat of their candidate. however, a “great and disgusting injustice?” a “sham and a travesty?” these are the kinds of things you need to support with something BEYOND “well, the guy i voted for didn’t win.” case in point: you know how we always claim that Putin doesn’t preside over fair and democratic elections? please note that such claims are typically supported with SOME real evidence.

also, call me nuts, but the fact that we all voted and some guy won the election makes this a democracy. i’m really not sure what Trump thinks a democracy is, but i am actually curious to hear what it entails, aside from “Romney is the president because … uh … RRR TRUMP SAYS SO!”

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump: “More votes equals a loss…revolution!”

jesus fucking christ, Trump, could you be any more pathetic about this? look, on both extreme ends of the political spectrum, you have a) people who are crying “revolution” as the only viable solution to the current status of American society/politics/cooking/whatever and b) people pointing out that their opposite numbers calling for revolution are stupid, ignorant traitors to America. and i am SURE that Trump has been one of those guys… although, in fairness, since he seems to change his political stripes as is convenient, maybe he’s always been the revolution shouter and never the criticizer of those calling for revolution.

furthermore, i’d really like to watch Donald Trump get a rifle and a flak jacket and attempt to take his “revolution” into his own hands so that i could watch a police office shoot him to death on television. but then i think we all know that Trump is a big talker who never backs up what he says.

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump: “Our country is now in serious and unprecedented trouble…like never before.”

now, this is the kind of thing i expect to hear from the kids of my generation and younger, who think everything currently occurring is the BEST EVER or the WORST EVER: there’s nothing like the youth of America to completely lack historical perspective. that said, i suppose Donald Trump is insufficiently mature to qualify him to join this team of stupid fucking kids. again, not to make a redundant point, but what exactly is the support for this claim of “America is in the worst trouble EVER?” please allow me to make a short list of times when i imagine America was in WORSE “serious and unprecedented” trouble:

–the Civil War
–World War II
–pretty much every year prior to 2012

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump: “Our nation is a once great nation divided!”

to this, i can only muster up an “…and?” look, let’s point out that everyone likes to talk about the partisanship that dominates Congress and/or the country, but no one has ever addressed that by simply yelling “our nation is a once great nation divided” over something as petty as not liking the results of an election.

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump: “The electoral college is a disaster for a democracy.”

i do appreciate him allowing me to make this point: the people who rage against the electoral college can be accurately described as “people whose preferred candidate lost the most recent presidential election in a manner they feel can be blamed on the electoral college.” seriously, Republicans hate it now, but were fine with it in 2000; Democrats are cool with it now, but raged against the (electoral) machine in 2000. sure, there are probably a couple of people on either side who have a long-standing beef with said college of electorals, but i doubt they’re the ones stoking the engine of INTERNET OUTRAGE on this topic.

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump: “House of Representatives shouldn’t give anything to Obama unless he terminates Obamacare.”

…which in turns leads me to believe that Donald Trump thinks Obamacare costs him money, and that this is the SOLE reason he opposes Obama. and you know what? that’s perfectly fine and he’s entitled to vote and support politicians because of that. however, it would be nice if he could express that without claiming America is being destroyed by this election, and thus it’s revolution time.

but look, Donald Trump and Victoria Jackson are fundamentally semi-famous idiots best known at this point. what about the people who are actually considered to be more serious political figures? well…

Jenny Beth Martin
oh, American conservatives, how i sometimes feel you don’t understand anything at all

“Following Mitt Romney’s loss to President Barack Obama, conservative leaders wasted no time Wednesday offering pointed criticism of the Republican Party and its pick for president. A coalition of social conservatives and tea party activists gathered in Washington to decry what they described as Romney’s failure to represent conservatives on a national level.”

so this can go one of two ways: 1) conservatives are disappointed because Obama won, and that’s worse for them because OBAMA, or 2) conservatives are upset because they believe the reason Romney lost was that he was NOT CONSERVATIVE ENOUGH.

“”We wanted someone who would fight for us. What we got was a weak, moderate candidate, hand-picked by the Beltway elites and country club establishment wing of the Republican Party,” Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of Tea Party Patriots, said in a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington. “The presidential loss is unequivocally on them,” she added.”

…and it looks like we’re going with option #02. see, this is what confuses me: a candidate that Martin considers to be very liberal (Obama) beat a candidate she considers to be moderate (Romney), and her solution to this is that the GOP should have run someone more conservative (oh, let’s say Santorum). but if the majority of voters went liberal, how the fuck does a MORE conservative candidate do any better? and if you think voters went liberal because of “gifts” or whatever else, how does a more conservative candidate counter that in any way?

i also love the notion that a conservative Tea Party member bears no responsibility for Romney’s loss, despite pushing him toward the positions you wanted during the primary. tell you what, let’s leave the presidency aside: Tea Party candidates have now lost 5 of 5 Senate elections in this election and the last. i have a feeling that those seats –the losses of which should be stated to be “unequivocally on people like Jenny Beth Martin”– would have come in handy to her GOP side these days.

“Brent Bozell, president of the conservative Media Research Center, argued that Romney failed to pass the ideological test, saying he ran as a “Democrat-light” and adjusted his positions to campaign as a moderate during the general election. “At the end of the day, conservatives were left out in the cold. It should have been a landslide for Romney, had he embraced a truly conservative agenda,” Bozell said. “But Romney’s a moderate and his campaign embarked on a bizarre…defense from the outset.””

now, i will throw Bozell a bone and agree that Romney IS essentially a moderate and this fact forced him into some weirdly defensive positions. what Bozell doesn’t say, however, is that a lot of this defense was due to Romney abandoning moderate positions for more conservative positions AT THE BEHEST OF PEOPLE LIKE BOZELL, allowing Obama to force Romney to defend changing his positions. see, here’s the thing: if Obama is for universal health care and Romney WAS for universal health care, Obama can’t attack Romney for having the same position he does… but he CAN attack him for the flip-flop, something forced by Bozell.

so, okay, this means Bozell wanted a sincere conservative who never NEEDED to adjust his positions. fair enough. but THAT means the issue wasn’t “embracing a truly conservative agenda,” but rather, always having possessed a truly conservative agenda. and again, what about an electorate that chose the more liberal candidate would have delivered an election to a turbo-conservative in a LANDSLIDE?

“On social issues, Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the anti-abortion rights group Susan B. Anthony List, blasted the candidate for not making abortion a central part of the 2012 dialogue. “He took all the right stances,” she said. “The problem was not communicating on the national stage with Obama what his actual positions were.””

dear Marjorie Dannenfelser: this makes no fucking sense. you wanted Romney to communicate his actual positions? i recall him REPEATEDLY talking about his campaign being pro-life and the Democrats beating him up for it. REPEATEDLY. unless you wanted Romney to adopt a public position of “i will personally kill all the fucking abortionists in America ON DAY ONE OF MY PRESIDENCY,” i don’t see what more conservative of a position Romney could have publicly taken. and if he had… how would this have helped him win the election?

“The group endorsed Romney after he unofficially became the nominee in April when former Sen. Rick Santorum dropped out of the race. Dannenfelser said they were “happy to endorse him when the time came” but expressed frustration when she said “we assumed, that given who he was, he would make (abortion) more of a national issue.””

okay, look, call me a moderate, call me a RINO, whatever, but here’s the thing: making abortion “more of a national issue” would not have gotten Romney elected. period. please, please, give me some evidence it would, you fucking crazy broad.

“All the activists at the press conference agreed that Tuesday’s election signaled a need for the GOP to re-institute more conservative “fundamentals.” While some argue the Republican Party’s failure to retake the Senate or make gains in the House suggests the tea party is losing steam, the group of individuals Wednesday argued the opposite. Given this week’s results, they said, conservatives will be even more motivated to reform the party. Richard A. Viguerie, chairman of ConservatieHQ.com, ended the press conference with one final prediction. “Tea partiers will take over the Republican Party within four years,” he said.”

now, i have ripped Viguerie before Bruce McCullough style; oddly enough, that was back in 2009 when Viguerie was bitching about RINOs following a disappointing election. i will throw out that, at the time, Viguerie was calling Newt Gingrich a RINO. i will point out that he’s been pushing for more Tea Party, more conservative fundamentals, more blaming RINOs/moderates for failure ever since then, and yet all he has to show for it is loses in the Senate and another term for Barack Obama. Tea Party guys will take over the Republican Party within four years? why hasn’t it happened already? but hell, assuming that it does happen? enjoy President Biden or President Clinton II or President OMG LIBERAL, Viguerie.

presidential election 2012 part i: the prelude to this all ending soon, we hope

one of the fundamental points that i have been absolutely harping on for some years now is that it’s really, really enough with these incredibly long, never-ending turbo-election cycles. IT IS ENOUGH. when the Irishman can joke four days prior to election 2012 that we’re “only four days away from campaign 2016” and the best one can manage is more of a sigh than a laugh because, let’s face it, that’s fucking true, it’s pretty telling. frankly, my feelings can be summed up with the following video:

i may have to vote Gary Johnson in honor of this kid.

seriously, though, i don’t know if i am just getting older and more jaded or what –i mean, i would like to presume my grouchy opinion towards the election is based on SOMETHING approaching “legitimate criticism”– but a campaign that never seems to end is REALLY killing the desire for participation in representative democracy that once existed within me (and maybe still does on good days, or when some candidate is talking reckless about my gun rights). the Republican primary dragged on and on… and then the general election dragged on and on… and in the end, if i don’t live in a battleground state, it’s not like my vote REALLY matters. and yet i had to suffer through all that. sure, it gave us some colorful moments when i was TOTALLY flipping out about Donald Trump or whoever else was being the asshole of the week, but somehow i feel that there are enough dumbasses in America for me to manage to find people to rip on without there being a presidential election going on.

perhaps this is the best way to describe how presidential elections make me feel: during season six of the Sopranos (season six, part one, if you want to be TECHNICAL about it, and no, this is not going to be some internet defense of those season(s) as great, so don’t worry), there was an episode, “Luxury Lounge,” which you may remember as a combination of “the one where Lauren Bacall gets punched in the face” and “the one where Artie Bucco gets a lot of screen time.” it’s a solid episode, all things considered, especially anything related to Little Carmine and/or Hollywood, but we’re going to be focusing on Artie Bucco here.

Arthur
Artie Bucco: prone to making poor life decisions

as a character, Artie’s all kinds of flawed; he spends a lot of this episode in a shameful mid-life crisis, at least when he’s not crying or trying to kill himself. he’s not exactly my role model. that said, there’s a part of this episode where he’s lamenting the fact that, “life’s not fair, right, i know, but somehow i believed my dad’s crap about honest work: you’ll see, it pays off in the end. what a joke.” honestly, this is the way i feel about most everything, even if that seems COMPLETELY unrelated to the election. when i was a kid, i was always told that you voted, as it was your civic responsibility and because it MATTERED. it’s important, it’s something people died to enable the rest of us to do, it’s something that people around the world can’t do, or maybe won’t ever do. but still… i’m watching guys spend 2-3 years of a four-year term campaigning for the next term. and i’m watching guys who have two-year terms spend their two years running for the next term. this is the honest work of politics that means something?

if you watch the Sopranos, you know Artie brings a LOT of shit on himself with the way he acts, so i can only presume that ultimately my apathy or negative feelings or whatever else is in play are my own fault; obviously there are issues (well, maybe issue, singular) that i actually DO care about that should keep me involved in the civic responsibility of voting. but still… if i watch the debates, i get to watch two millionaires who i cannot fathom actually give a shit about me (specifically me, not some royal “me” that represents AMERICA) at all say pretty much the same goddamn thing the other guy is saying, and while they’re talking about what they want to DO, i know they’re just saying whatever they need to say to get elected. this is something i am supposed to embrace?

so, anyway, this is rambling and clearly one of those things that makes total sense to you, the writer/speaker, but not to anyone listening, and most importantly of all, NONE OF THIS IS FUNNY (we’re going to do the joke thing next time). and it’s not like shortening the damn primaries and/or election is going to magically make me think that someone actually gives a damn about my existence in the world of politics, so i don’t know what i am even advocating here. mostly i am just tired of the whole mess.

luckily, however, post-election, people said and did some sincere nonsense, and THAT in turn will allow for actual joke-making. so sorry about this update, single reader of this site who has to be aware that i am churning out some absolute DUDS here from time to time. we’ll see what happens next week.

things i am not making fun of at all: parkour dog, dinosaur batman, and the politics of your beer selection. unless you chose Heineken!

to be perfectly honest, i feel bad about throwing out ANOTHER content-free placeholder post when i did the same thing two weeks ago; you can attribute this to me just refusing to get pending updates completed (possibly until they’re WAY past their expiration date), you can attribute this to whatever personal failings of mine you’d like (there are many), you can attribute this to… well, whatever. in any case, let us use this time to post a few things that i can’t make fun of so much as just sit back in awe of.

TreT the Super Dog may have a stupid name (apparently he is also known as “Parkour Dog from Ukraine, which actually sounds bett), but i can say this: if this dog was running for president, i would vote for him. actually, scratch that: i would vote for this dog for any possible political office he could hold, given that he’s from the Ukraine, and this not eligible to be president, but still much more excellent than any politicians i know. and honestly, that’s not meant to be a cynical reflection of my lack of faith in our modern politicians; it’s more a reflection about how fucking awesome this dog is.

if i ran a television network, i would give him a show entitled Parkour Dogus Has Moves. we’re working with some very high-level puns here.

something about how my taste in beer relates to my politics?

What Your Beer Says About Your Politics

so i’m not making fun of this because, you know, science was at work, i guess, but i don’t know that i agree with it. specific complaints?

01. my personal taste leans Guinness, but as far as i can tell, i am not Democrat-leaning and prone to high voter turnout. although i DO have to admit that, despite my incredibly pessimism commentaries on the uselessness of voting and all that, i still DO vote all the damn time. so maybe i am just resisting what the Guinness says about me, beyond that i think Guinness is a tasty beer?

02. according to this chart, the Irishman, who i am assigning a choice of Yuengling to, would be even more Republican than i am Democrat (note: i am not a Democrat and he is not a Republican) and more prone to voting than i. i think he thinks Ron Paul is cool, but somehow i doubt he’s carrying the flag for the GOP simply because he thinks America’s oldest brewery is cool. then again, it’s not like i KNOW how he votes, right?

03. next time i see someone drinking a Heineken, i am going to point at them and declare “YOU FUCKING COMMUNIST.”

like i said, DINOSAUR BATMAN

DINOSAUR BATMAN

so this is over a year old, but it’s not something you make fun of (OBVIOUSLY), so let’s look back at 2011 and think about how cool this Dinosaur Batman is! the page informs us that “keep in mind that the movie is shooting under the code name Magnus Rex, and the T-Rex appears to be a gag set up by students at the nearby Art Institute of Pittsburgh”; i love to mock the Art Institutes, but this is still pretty excellent.

so okay, there you go. this was ALMOST like a real update! we’ll eventually get this website on track

NERDCATION 2012: the correct term is not “nerdfest,” please try and resist jamming “-fest” into the mix

no update for the week of the 21st? no update for the week of the 21st? can i give a good reason for this? well…

so myself and my trusty Irish sidekick are large fans of video gaming that involves side-by-side co-op, something that seems to have been going the way of the dodo in this modern world where all the kids have turbo-high-speed internets that allow co-op to be played in multiple houses. as for us, we don’t believe in that shit. and so when Borderlands 2 comes out, we’ll be spending about four days leveling up my “magic chick” and her robot assistant.

is this possibly just a straight-up excuse so that i won’t have to attempt to write an update? i guess we’ll never know! but we might have one for next week, we’ll see.

janklow’s birthday gift to himself: no update required for the week of July 15-21

you know, i hate to throw up a placeholder post in the place of a weekly update TWICE in one year –and by “hate,” i mean “hate in principle, not in practice”– but July has been an absolutely clusterfuck of wedding aftermath, bout with Lyme disease, my own depressing birthday times, and a swarm of giant, giant dogs. SO MUCH DOGS. also, i think there was a hot tub in there somewhere, although i think it’s fair to say i shouldn’t be attributing a lack of production to the mere presence and/or use of a hot tub.

…and yet none of that stuff has turned into an update? huh.

ANYWAY, this is the placeholder, i hope we all enjoy it and that it results in actual on-schedule production resuming shortly thereafter.

token “OMG CHANGES” update that is taking the place of actual content

now, what seems to have happened to our dear old house of hate was that either someone (possibly me) fucked up the site, or at least enough of it to make everything go CRAZY, or my hosting company (who shall remain nameless, because they MIGHT be responsible, but they were also very nice in dealing with my CONFUSION) fucked up the site … and so the end result has been a lot of software repair and database updating and on and on.

so what i’m going to do is take advantage of the fact that everything went haywire on me to do the following:

01. get feedback from anyone (as in, no one) who has a comment or advice regarding the site’s design/colors/the like;
02. take advantage of all this to compensate for the fact that we’re running about a week behind right now by throwing this update out there as an “actual update” and then getting us caught up ASAP with an ACTUAL update at some point;
03. GO CRAZY, BROADWAY-STYLE

seriously, though, while i know no one is actually reading this, i WOULD like a little input if there’s any to offer, since my former theme and whatever work i did to customize it just got tossed. now, i don’t want to leave you with NO CONTENT here, so… how about a top-10 comedy bit of all time that perhaps, ever so slightly, foreshadows the upcoming update?