A Divided House; A Leaking Roof and A Crumbling Facade

The Government of the United States is broken. Days into the Republican National Convention it becomes crystal clear that the two outspoken factions of our Government can no longer communicate in a civil and courteous manner. The rehearsed rhetoric thus far displayed by the Republicans, the party of the rich, shows us nothing but vitriol and blame. The Founding Fathers certainly expected heated discourse between two parties but at least it was discourse. The parties listened to each other. This civility and respect is now a thing of the past. Now the speeches call upon feelings of animosity and division.

Ironically the Capitol is currently in serious disrepair. The roof is now leaking and the facade is crumbling dangerously. The Senate and the House are not surprisingly unable to agree on the  procurement necessary to repair this damage. This should not be a partisan issue. The building should be a lasting symbol of the history of this once great and democratic country. Shame on these so called public servants who have been so bribed by the oligarchy that they cannot even agree on getting the leak in the roof fixed. How symbolic that this is happening at a time of such vitriol and division. The very building that houses our legislature and appears on the currency of the Nation is crumbling and eroding away as does our values, virtues and ability to compromise let alone communicate.

There comes a time when the very people that we elected to bring about civilization and prosperity must redirect their energy do do just that! For too many years now they have been wined, dined and swayed to be the gigolos of the lobbyists and special interests. For too long the needs of the general populous and the environment have been ignored. The conscience of the country has been mislead, diverted and perverted by outright lies! Right now we are experiencing ad after ad of outright lies! People please hear the truth don’t be swayed by the oligarchy. Big oil is concerned with nothing but profits. The plight of the common man is ignored. Young men die to defend oil fields. The so called rich don’t even want to either fight themselves or even pay for the wars they start! The cowards would rather blame the current President for the huge deficits. Not the wars and the tax cuts that George W. put into place. Their puppets and gigolo friends are in place to carry on their deception. Don’t let your vote be purchased. Defend liberty and defend the planet!

“Words will not be able to ever express how sorry I am for this, and I have profound regret and sorrow for the multitude of mistakes and harm I have caused.” — Jack Abramoff

“If I read the articles about me, and I didn’t know me, I would think I was Satan.” — Jack Abramoff

Get off the cell phone and Drive! — Jake Shween

Green Shween

The news is good. The caveat is that action is required immediately. It is certainly a very exciting time to be alive. All the resources of the United States must be directed to the green revolution. We have no time for naysayers. To deny global warming is quite simply ignorant. It is just as ridiculous to deny evolution. But rather than argue about superficial notions we need to get going on a green initiative and set an example for the rest of the world.

It is truly time for the people who are pro life to prove it. Prove it by preserving the earth for the future generations of life. Put your money where your mouths are. Admit that burning coal and oil is not the solution. Renewable sources of energy are the only solution. Massive green projects are needed nationwide. All our resources should be directed towards green initiatives. Buildings need to be retrofit to be energy efficient. Stop mining coal or drilling oil and start reeducating people for careers to retool the country. We can’t afford to listen to the lobbyists any longer. Throw the lobbyists out of the capital. We need lawmakers to do what they’re supposed to do and serve the public!

The new age of communication should be bringing us closer and making us smarter, not tearing us apart and dumbing us down. Stop wasting time and massive amounts of money on hollow rhetoric for the delusional power mongers. People are sick and tired of being lied to. The military industrial complex must shed its skin and transform into a project of renewal, preservation and transformation. We need to tax carbon dioxide emissions. It should not be profitable to further pollute the atmosphere. Make it profitable to be green. Save the earth. Aren’t the fires and the drought enough to convince you that something needs to change?

“Beware the Corporate Democrats their bite is as bad as the Bandersnatch! Their nose grows long, their snout is huge, they fill you with their subterfuge. Better to shun a Republican at least you know where they’re coming from.” — Jake Shween

“Batten down the hatches and if they’re battened down already, batten ’em down again!” — Bugs Bunny

Get off the cell phone and Drive! — Jake Shween


The Lost Boys Run; The Wooden Dummy and The Rhinestone Cowboy

The Game is officially begun and the contestants have been announced. We now have established a Republican ticket for the ages. Please be prepared for some of the lowest intellectual levels of political advertising and discourse this country has ever seen. We have the marvelous Wooden Dummy in the form of Willard Mitt Romney. Watch how he grins, grimaces waves his finger and retreats. If you thought Ronald Regan was a puppet for the right wing haters you ain’t seen nothing yet. God forbid this Republican buffoon should ever divulge his taxes. Rumor now has it that he committed a felony for which he was granted amnesty! What is really hiding in the returns he won’t divulge? Ooops! Sounds like a felony! Uh oh Hot Dog!

Enter our heroic vice presidential nominee the illustrious Rhinestone Cowboy, Paul Ryan the buccaneer budgeteer. Never mind that he once embraced the teachings of the avowed capitalist, atheist and feminist upstart Ayn Rand. Why this Rhinestone Cowboy even once claimed that her teachings were the very reason he chose politics as his career. He went so far as to require that every member of his staff read her capitalist manifesto: Atlas Shrugged. Of course this was much to the horror and chagrin of the God fearing Catholic Americans who he now embraces whole heartedly. Sadly they no longer seem to embrace him at all. Will the genuine Rhinestone Cowboy please stand up? Perhaps not, it seems he is duplicitous at best. Smoking Joe Biden is more interesting. At least he shoots from the hip and says what he’s thinking.

This should make for some delightful debates both presidential and vice presidential. God willing the debates will advance the level of rhetoric beyond uttering falsehoods and distortions of reality. Watch as each side retreats to their corners to consult the cut man before the bell rings. Notice that certain constituents on both sides have suddenly gotten very quiet. Is there a smoking gun that at the last moment will bring down the Wooden Dummy? Time will tell and meantime enjoy the show. McCain and Palin were just the warm up act for the Wooden Dummy and the Rhinestone Cowboy.

“Where hustle’s the name of the game
And nice guys get washed away like the snow and the rain
There’s been a load of compromisin’
On the road to my horizon
But I’m gonna be where the lights are shinin’ on me” — from the song: Rhinestone Cowboy written by Larry Weiss

“It’s not the way he says it, it’s what he said, but what can you say with a wooden head? Whether the time is cloudy or the time is sunny it’s always time for Jimmy the talking dummy” — from the song: Jukie’s Ball by Dan Hicks

Get off the cell phone and Drive! — Jake Shween

Death in the Produce Aisle; Genetically Modified Truths

He stood in the produce aisle debating what to eat for dinner that night. Several vegetables caught his eye and brought up visions of culinary delights. The crookneck squash looked particularly delectable with its bright glossy yellow skin. Next to that a bin of ears of corn. The ears were large and firm. They also appeared perfectly edible. The produce person was sorting through the broccoli and arranging fresh bunches. He politely asked the store employee, “are these vegetables genetically modified?”. “I’m really not sure.” answered the broccoli sorter. ‘Hmmm’ the man thought. ‘Maybe I’ll give them a try.’

He tore a plastic bag off the dispenser and loaded it with six ears of corn. Three for a dollar he thought, better get six. As far as the squash he loaded up the bag with what he guessed was two pounds of golden goodness. Curiously as he turned to the scale he noticed a man dressed in camouflage was eyeing him from behind the green beans. ‘That’s strange,’ he thought, ‘what’s he looking at me for?’ He turned and walked up to the next aisle which was filled with condiments including vinegar and salad dressing.

Reaching down to grab a jar of his favorite mayonnaise he felt a strange sensation tearing through his left quadricep. He stumbled back and slammed into the shelf behind him. Several jars of mustard fell on his head and shoulders. He looked up to see the man in camouflage standing over him with a glock pistol. It was aimed squarely at his forehead. “What did I do?” he managed to spit out despite the pain. “Why you were going to buy those genetically engineered vegetables you stupid son of a bitch”, growled the vigilante. “I am going to kill you quick, they would’ve killed you slow!”

‘Great,’ he thought to himself, ‘I am going to be killed by a frikking gun happy lunatic over a dosing of roundup.’ ‘Talk about a genetically modified vegetable, who modified this lunatic’s brain?’ Crack, crack the pistol exhorted. Soon his brains and blood were slowly leaking into the spilled mustard. Mixing into a bizarre dressing on the grocery store floor. “Clean up in aisle five!” the gun happy man proclaimed. “Call the police!” screamed an elderly man.

Five minutes later the police arrived. After the shell shock across the country there were five cruisers pulled up to the front of the store in three minutes flat. Seven policemen surrounded the glock wielding murderer demanding he drop his weapon immediately. Curiously the man complied and gently lowered his shiny pistol to the floor. An officer approached him and began to recite his Miranda rights. When he was finished the trembling man let himself be handcuffed and was led away without a struggle.

“Why did you do it?” the sergeant said as he carefully put the man in the back of the patrol car? “We are all going to die anyway, don’t you see?,” the murderer whispered, “It doesn’t matter anyway, I was just helping him out. If my bullet hadn’t got him he would’ve gotten cancer from those vegetables. We are all being lied to every day. Lies, lies and more lies. Don’t you see it? Nobody gives a damn anymore!” The sergeant closed the car door when the man had finished. ‘How many more of these Goddamn lunatics have guns?’ the sergeant thought to himself.

“I’m not upset that you lied to me, I’m upset that from now on, I can’t believe you” — Friedrich Nietzsche

Get off the cell phone and drive! — Jake Shween

Crashing Heaven’s Gate

Rabbi Moshe Rabinowitz looked over the sea of heads and sighed. “Oy vey,” he thought to himself, “another hard days night at heaven’s gate.” Looking up he saw a large overweight man still holding the chicken sandwich that he had apparently choked to death on. “Name?” said the Rabbi. “Samuel,” said the bald fat man. “Oh here you are,” replied Moshe as he looked through a tome of considerable size. “So tell me what happened?” Bald fat Samuel seemed offended. “Where is Saint Peter?” he demanded. Moshe rolled his eyes and thought to himself another meshugana schlepp. Moshe sighed. “Peter hasn’t worked here since the eighties. He was a union employee and was fired when Reagan deregulated everything.” Samuel looked confused. He took another bite of his chicken sandwich and started choking again. Moshe suddenly knew what happened. “Oh I’m sorry, you’ve choked to death on your sandwich I see. A Chick Fil A sandwich no less. Okay right this way please.” Moshe pointed to a queue of people that led around a white pillar. Samuel begrudgingly went where he was told.

“Next” cried Moshe. An elderly man with a stately air walked slowly towards the podium. Moshe recognized him right away. “Why you’re that shmuck Gore Vidal,” Moshe cried. “Indeed I am,” said Mr. Vidal. “I have no idea what I am doing here, I thought I was going to be on Real Time with Bill Maher but I started coughing and ended up here.” Moshe stroked his beard. “I am sorry Mr. Vidal but this is the end of this act for you. If you please step straight ahead.” Moshe pointed behind him to a path by a stream that seemed to disappear into a cloud. “Where the hell does that go?” demanded Gore Vidal. “Why it’s heaven the land of peace and quiet!” exclaimed the Rabbi. “Horseshit,” repiled Gore. “Peace and quiet is not my style. Where is that bastard Buckley?” Moshe turned a bit pale. “Not here he didn’t quite make the cut. But since he was Catholic we were able to arrange a vacation in Purgatory for him for an indefinite amount of time.” “Well don’t waste my time send me there I am not done with that pusillanimous bastard yet!” growled Gore Vidal. Now Moshe was quite good at arranging things. He pointed to the left where an escalator was going down, down, down. “I’m on my way, thank you Rabbi.” Mr. Vidal embarked downward.

Now Samuel had waited quite some time and as he got closer he could see clearly why there was such a delay. It seemed at the end of the line, the entrance-way as it was, was a single white door and when it opened would admit only one person at a time. Finally it was Samuel’s turn to enter. The door opened wide and he walked into a white room. The door closed behind him. When the door had closed it disappeared. The room was seamless and starkly featureless. He was now in a bland white room forever. No colors, no sounds, no wind. Just whiteness which he seemed to fade into. An eternal prison of nothing.

The escalator went on and on. Pretty soon Gore could smell bus exhaust. Through the clouds the tops of buildings began to appear. The next thing you know there he was on Fifth Avenue in midtown looking at the Museum of Modern Art. Fancy this he thought to himself as he began to walk about headed towards Broadway. The city seemed its normal self with horns beeping and people bustling. He got to Broadway and rubbed his eyes. The marquis above the theater read: Tonight and Forever: Buckley Debates Vidal. Can you believe it he thought. The bastard has been waiting for me!

The writer would like to express his sincere condolences to the family of Gore Vidal. The world has lost a great literary lion whom can never be replaced. His writings and wisdom will live on as a testimony to his sharp wit and his keen sense of humanity. — Jake Shween

Get off the cell phone and drive! — Jake Shween