Yes, They Actually Do Go There

From Album 5 Some time back — and probably influenced by the Bill Hicks line about greeting Jackie Kennedy while wearing a rifle pendant — I described something foolish, stupid, and/or inane to a friend, and (paraphrasing here) said it was as crazy at "the NRA hosting a pro-gun rally in Dealey Plaza." OK, so it isn't the NRA, but As they've been doing on each third Saturday for months, advocates for the open carrying of firearms gathered — semiautomatic weapons in tow — at Dealey Plaza over the weekend. Whenever you think there's a line that even bug-fuck insane … Continue reading Yes, They Actually Do Go There

Pulp Fiction Thursday: Black Caesar

I'd never seen the venerable blaxploitation movie, Black Caesar, until recently. It's pretty bad except for a charismatic lead performance by Fred (The Hammer) Williamson and a funky score by James Brown. The Godfather of Soul was an appropriate choice since the movie was called Godfather of Harlem in the UK. I think they spent half the budget on music because the acting is laughably bad. The tagline on the poster, however, is terrific. It's  trailer time:   Here's the de facto theme song. Good gawd,y'all:   Continue reading Pulp Fiction Thursday: Black Caesar

Malaka Of The Week: Operation Save America

  Even groups that come to protest here in Sin City feel compelled to post a picture of Bourbon Street. In this instance, it's Operation Rescue who are apparently out to save America. Their target is, of course, death/abortion mills. The only mills on Bourbon Street are Gin and T-Shirt mills. Operation Save America, or whatever the hell you want to call them, has, of course, not restricted its protests to so-called "death mills" and that is why it/they is/are malaka of the week. I was originally going to focus on the group's malakatudinous protests outside a doctor's home in … Continue reading Malaka Of The Week: Operation Save America

Cruel and Unusual Punishment in Arizona

I've always hated the death penalty. Even if the right person is convicted, it's all about revenge and not justice. I dislike society stooping to the level of the worst of the worst. Moreover, the idea that there is a humane way to kill people is ludicrous. Lethal injection is supposed to be more humane than the electric chair, the noose, or the gas chamber but it is increasingly obvious that it is just as barbaric as previous methods of execution. The latest example of that took place in Arizona: A condemned Arizona inmate gasped and snorted for more than … Continue reading Cruel and Unusual Punishment in Arizona

You Don’t Have a Right to Me Not Being an Asshole

Or something:  I am a proponent of most of the causes the gay community has fought for. And I think that it's wrong how they've been prejudiced against. But having said all that, I think it's important to recognize that that doesn't mean [you] have a right to [people being] comfortable with you. And it's important to recognize you don't have the right to avoid being called a dishonest, sleazy bag of buttholes for saying something so condescending and stupid. I'm sorry, gay people don't have the right to everybody being comfortable with them? Who the hell is even asking … Continue reading You Don’t Have a Right to Me Not Being an Asshole

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Thrust

Thrust was the follow-up album to Herbie Hancock's wildly successful jazz-funk-fusion opus Head Hunters. It was almost as successful artistically and commerically. The cover art by Rob Springett *always* makes me smile. What's not to love about Herbie and his large 'fro in a space ship? Here's the back cover. Dig those 1974 threads, y'all: Here's the whole damn LP, be prepared to get your funk on, Headhunters style:   Continue reading Album Cover Art Wednesday: Thrust

The Poor Door

If you don't see them, they don't exist:  When it's completed, 40 Riverside will have 219 expensive, river-facing condos to sell to people who are in a position to buy them and 55 street-facing places to rent to sad sacks who earn 60 percent or less than the median income. "Because Extell considers the affordable segment to be legally separate from the rest of the building, it says it is required to have different entrances," Think Progress explains. Plus, it will spare all the residents from the terrible awkwardness of regularly encountering people whose lifestyles differ from theirs, or something. Perhaps … Continue reading The Poor Door

Unforced Error

Landrieu administration makes like Emily Litella on the Operation Save America proclamation and says never mind: In an email this afternoon, Landrieu spokesman Tyler A. Gamble wrote: It is customary for the City to provide standard proclamations to visiting groups that request them through the City’s web site. To be clear, the City does not endorse extreme or violent tactics, and this proclamation was issued in error. Any group can exercise their constitutional rights, but all of us have a responsibility to do so in a respectful manner. During these events, the NOPD is executing a robust security plan to keep the … Continue reading Unforced Error

The Paywall Only Works if Good is Behind It

Otherwise it's like hyperlocal and citizen journalism and every other flailing attempt to be to readers anything other than what newspapers are good at:  The Dallas Morning News launched its premium website nine months ago, hoping readers would be willing pay $11.96 a month to see fewer ads and more photos. There were “promises of personalization and loyalty programs to come later,” the paper notes. Later, of course, never arrived. And "more photos" is great if they're, you know, good photos. A slideshow of people's pets does not count. And I rag on the Trib here in town for putting syndicated … Continue reading The Paywall Only Works if Good is Behind It

Arcane Phrase Of The Week: Boozy Edition

There are many phrases describing inebriation; so many, in fact, that it's nearly a cottage industry, which is also an arcane phrase but not this week's winner. Ladies and germs, I give you: Tight as a boiled owl. Mind you, I've never boiled an owl, which is odd since I live in South Louisiana where we boil crawfish, crabs, and shrimp. I think this could catch on, I really do. Here's a usage example: the last time I played trivia with the NOLA Twitter people, I got tight as a boiled owl. Since we're on the subject of booze, here's … Continue reading Arcane Phrase Of The Week: Boozy Edition

Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with the Freeperati – Bye-bye Bailey Bulldog edition

  Well, just when I thought this week couldn't get any more fucked up…Bailey Bulldog is dead. He died sometime Thursday morning, in his sleep, at the incredible (for a Bulldog) age of 13. He was a rescue. His owner died from cancer, and for some reason his kids didn't want Bailey. Barbara and I drove to Tulsa to pick him up. He lived in his forever home with us for 6 years. Unlike a lot of rescue bullies, there was nothing horribly (and expensively) wrong with him physically – he just kept going and going. He had started going downhill … Continue reading Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with the Freeperati – Bye-bye Bailey Bulldog edition

Further Adventures of the Welfare Queens

Tourist centers versus places people can live:  Millennium Park is a triumph of public relations. For example, in interviews with civic leaders a few years ago, it wasn't hard to discern the script when virtually each one repeated the notion that once finished Millennium Park would be the new postcard picture of Chicago. And that no matter what the final bill, the cost would be worth it. When I heard my former editor atChicago magazine repeat that last one one day, I knew the meme had set in. But is it true? Of course not. At what point, I would ask the … Continue reading Further Adventures of the Welfare Queens

James Garner, R.I.P.

I woke up way too early this morning, checked the Tweeter Tube, and groaned audibly when I saw that the great James Garner had died at the age of 86. Garner made everything look easy. He was an actor with formidable chops but he never tried too hard and never chewed the scenery. Most of all, he was likable, both on and off the screen. We all loved him in The Rockford Files with his oddball friends, cheesy trailer, and hot muscle car. I'm glad that Jim Rockford's exploits live on in syndication, captivating new generations with his raffish charm.  … Continue reading James Garner, R.I.P.

Weekend Question Thread

Out this weekend working, but I wanted to ask in light of that meme going around The Internet's Gaping Butthole asking which of several dead musicians you would resurrect: If you could bring one historical personage back to life, who would it be?  I would like to have some words with several of the Founding Fathers regarding the conduct of their fan club of late, so probably one of those fellows.  A.  Continue reading Weekend Question Thread

It’s Not About You

This nails it, almost:  But what all these issues, no matter how gigantically separated an Esquire puff piece and a Tennessee mother’s jailing for meth may seem, reflect back at us: How, in this country, every barometer by which female worth is measured—from the superficial to the life-altering, the appreciative to the punitive—has long been calibrated to “dude,” whether or not those measurements are actually being taken by dudes. Men still run, or at bare minimum have shaped and codified the attitudes of, the churches, the courts, the universities, the police departments, the corporations that so freely determine women’s worth. As Beyoncé … Continue reading It’s Not About You

Fatal Stupidity

New Yorker honcho David Remnick wrote a post this morning about that described the commander of the Ukrainian separatist group that intially took credit for shooting down the Malaysian Air jetliner thusly: A wildly messianic nationalist who cultivates an air of lumpy intrigue, [Igor] Strelkov has found his way to the battlefields of Chechnya, Serbia, and Transnistria. He is now helping to run the separatist operation in Donetsk. Like the radical nationalists and neo-imperialists in Moscow, who have easy access to the airwaves these days, Strelkov has a singular point of disagreement with Putin: the Russian President hasn’t gone nearly … Continue reading Fatal Stupidity

‘None of you are better than them.’

This is too much for us to handle:  The face-off is taking place after a similar demonstration in Murrieta, California, led to vitriolic exchanges about how the U.S. immigration system is being overwhelmed by a tide of Central American migrants. The Murrieta protesters blocked three busloads of detained immigrants from entering the town for federal processing. The demonstrations in Oracle come as activists organize a nationwide movement protesting the immigration surge with at least 260 protests scheduled this weekend. "We are being invaded!" says a flyer distributed by 11 groups organized as National Day of Protesting Against Immigration Reform, Amnesty … Continue reading ‘None of you are better than them.’

Is There Anything Politico Thinks is Real?

I ask you:  But before they hung up, O’Malley told Muñoz not to send any of the children to the facility in Westminster, Md., that the White House was looking at. It’s a conservative part of the state, he warned. The children were at risk of getting harassed, or worse, he said. This only inflamed tensions between the White House and the Democratic governor who’s been trying to stake out room on the left for a possible presidential run. Busloads of impoverished migrant children on the verge of certain death?  HOW DOES THIS AFFECT THE 2016 ELECTIONS?!  A.  Continue reading Is There Anything Politico Thinks is Real?


Georgia wingnut Phil Gingrey is leaving Congress after a failed attempt to secure the GOP nomination for the Senate. He was too extreme even for Georgia Republicans. I am scared shitless that this mook will continue to be licensed to practice medicine. He's an anti-choice Oby-Gyn, put that in your pipe and smoke it, y'all Gingrey pulled a  classic wingnut stunt this week, but it's one that should be beneath contempt for a physician. He wrote a letter to the CDC about the looming humanitarian crisis on the border. Here's how Charlie Pierce described this despicable letter: The other day—Congressman Phil … Continue reading Malpractice

Another Slim Volume

From Album 5 So Rep. Renee Ellmers recently insisted that the way to a woman's voting heart certainly wasn't through her purty little head, because that might give her a great big old headache Men do tend to talk about things on a much higher level…Many of my male colleagues, when they go to the House floor, you know, they've got some pie chart or graph behind them and they’re talking about trillions of dollars and how, you know, the debt is awful and, you know, we all agree with that. … We need our male colleagues to understand that … Continue reading Another Slim Volume

Johnny Winter, R.I.P.

One of the best blues rock guitarists ever, Johnny Winter, has died at the age of 70. As a young man, Winter was a vision: a tall, whip thin Albino, wearing black clothes and quite often a cowboy hat as a nod to his Texas roots. He was a sight to see and an amazing player. He died as he lived, on the road. He will be missed. Here's a 1974 teevee appearance with Johnny rocking the joint in a top hat:   Continue reading Johnny Winter, R.I.P.

Class Warfare

Something Oliver highlights in that video above, that I went looking for because it seemed to illustrate just what's wrong with everything ever right now:   The last time the group met, in May 2011, historian Robert Dallek finally asked Obama what the group could do to help him. Obama’s answer went right to a present-day concern: “What you could do for me is to help me find a way to discuss the issue of inequality in our society without being accused of class warfare.” Because, erm, you'd think by May of 2011 Obama would have figured out that there is … Continue reading Class Warfare

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Learn To Count

James Mason's primary asset as an actor was his smooth, silky voice. It served him well when playing either a villain or the good guy. That's why I was so amused to learn of this LP whilst reading By Ken Levine.   My favorite details on the cover are the Bozo seal of approval and Mason's coffin nail. Here's Mason's appearance as the mystery guest on What's My Line? Alvin was nowhere to be seen:   Continue reading Album Cover Art Wednesday: Learn To Count