Category: Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #016: … and The Doobie Brothers Aren’t Really Brothers!

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #016: … and The Doobie Brothers Aren’t Really Brothers!

Good news, potheads! You no longer have to drive down to Uruguay to hang out in a nation where your recreational smoking predilections won’t get you thrown in prison.

Yesterday’s Toronto Star gave us the news. Recreational cannabis is now legal north of the border. “As Canada stops treating cannabis as a ‘social evil,’ police look to ‘culture change’ in enforcement.” Their coverage of the event went on to discuss expedited pardons for pot possessors, a province-by-province breakdown of the price of weed, and photos of normal, average everyday Canadians standing in long lines at their newly opened weed shops as though they enjoyed waiting for that first iPhone a decade ago.

And, from the looks of the crowd, I’m sure many did.

Yesterday, cartoonist/storyteller Erik Larsen scored one of the biggest (probably unintentional) public relations victories in comics. The 239th issue of Savage Dragon (full disclosure: it’s one of my absolute favorite comics, for reasons I’ll probably explain in an upcoming Brainiac On Banjo column) went on sale the same day Canadian weed went legal. The lead character, his wife and children, and some members of the supporting cast relocated to the Great White North last year. Toronto, to be exact, which happens to be my favorite city in North America. I identify with, and am jealous of, any Chicagoan who moves to Toronto. Will the Savage Dragon mellow out and become the Magic Dragon?  Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #016: … and The Doobie Brothers Aren’t Really Brothers!”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #015: “Oh, Little Girl, Cathartic Reaction”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #015: “Oh, Little Girl, Cathartic Reaction”

Hey! Guess what? We just finished the Second American Revolution! No kidding! The bad news is, we lost. The America we were taught in school, to the extent it was ever around, is now completely gone. Maybe forever, if you don’t do something about it.

Warning To The Public: The next person who tells me they’re not going to vote because “all politicians are the same” is going to get punched square in the jaw. And the next person who says people of conscience should not step up to the plate because they risk “energizing Trump’s base” is going to get punched square in the jaw as well.

Do you know how embarrassing it would be to get punched out by a geriatric cripple? Some asshole might find out. But, to be fair, I will respect my victim for having the courage to confront me directly, as opposed to the millions of spineless cowards who lack the courage of their National Socialist convictions by hiding behind the internet’s anonymity as they try to shove their monstrous gibberish down the throats of people with reason.  Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #015: “Oh, Little Girl, Cathartic Reaction””

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #014: Hokey Smokes, Trump! Just Stop It!

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #014: Hokey Smokes, Trump! Just Stop It!

I had something else on my mind this week, and I had put a lot of thought into it. Driving from Maryland to Connecticut Monday on the New Jersey Turnpike gave me a lot of bumper-to-bumper time for thought, and I’d rather think than curse.

I scheduled Tuesday for sleeping late, bumping into walls, chatting with the cats, ignoring emails and vacuuming away the left-over energy from a typically wonderful time at the Baltimore Comic-Con… until I caught the news. Within nanoseconds, my original topic flew out of my brainpan faster than a speeding bullet. Once again, Donald J. Trump was pumping out offensively obnoxious bullshit, clearly bent on outdoing his “grab him by the pussy” headstone moment.

No matter what you think of Doctor Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony last week – at the time Trump commended her for it, and it was quite convincing to many who had not already made their minds up. Clearly, she deserved respect for surviving her experience – although there are those too stupid to understand why victims of sexual assault might not what to volunteer to re-experience that horror. If you need amplification on this, look at the way the Republican senators have responded to her “performance.” They quickly were eclipsed by Trump’s performance a couple days ago in Southaven, Mississippi.  Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #014: Hokey Smokes, Trump! Just Stop It!”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #013: Kavanaugh and Cosby’s Innocent Merriment

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #013: Kavanaugh and Cosby’s Innocent Merriment

My object all sublime / I shall achieve in time / To let the punishment fit the crime / The punishment fit the crime; And make each prisoner pent / Unwillingly represent / A source of innocent merriment! / Of innocent merriment

-William S. Gilbert, The Mikado, 1885

The oft-suggested de facto position of the Republican Party is that rape really isn’t such a big deal. They are mistaken. In fact, rape is obscene, lawless, hideous, dangerous, dirty, violent… and extremely pervasive.

On Fox News Monday evening, Supreme Court Justice-wannabe Brett Kavanaugh offered as his defense against two charges (quickly upgraded to three) of sexual assault his claim that he was a virgin all the way through college. The mere fact that he thinks this is any sort of a defense makes him lower than pond scum, yet only half as intelligent. Although many of his Republican friends backed this defense until they were told, possibly by their daughters, to shut the hell up. I believe Brett when says he was a virgin because, quite frankly, with his attitude I’m amazed any woman or man would ever want to fuck him. But as a defense, his alleged virginity is completely irrelevant.

Brett, you birdbrain, here’s the bird’s-eye lowdown on sexual assault. You can, and according to your very own behavior most likely did, commit sexual assault while still maintaining your virginity. There’s a term for this: it’s called attempted rape. It’s a felony. It appears, Brett, from the very words you uttered during the past two weeks that you are a failed rapist.

Well, after all, Republican boys will be Republican boys. 

The Kavanaugh cover-up almost interfered with the story of Bill Cosby’s sentencing for the rape of Andrea Constand in 2004. He had been found guilty of three counts of aggravated indecent assault which, combined, carries a maximum sentence of 30 years. On Tuesday, Judge Steven O’Neill sentenced Cosby to three years.

Judge O’Neill, whose office telephone number is 610-278-3985, was appointed to the bench in 2002 by Pennsylvania Governor Mark Schweiker, then a prominent member of the Republican Party. You know, the party that is anti-abortion but pro-rape. As Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” Judge O’Neill will be on the bench until 2023, in case you’re planning on drugging and raping somebody but you’re not sure where best to do it.

“Well, he’s an old man,” some say. “Fuck you,” I say. He’s an old rapist, and three years in prison does not pass the Mikado test. If Cos is an unruly bastard in the slammer, his sentence might be extended up to 10 years. My guess is that he’ll remain under house arrest until his appeals have been exhausted. At his age, Cosby’s likely to have been exhausted before his appeals are exhausted.

Oh, yeah. Cosby must register as a sex offender. As Noah said, “Riiiight.” This will fuck up his ability to land a job. Quite frankly, registering as a sex offender is redundant. He’s already registered as “Bill Cosby.” America’s Dad has got himself a problem.

Recent comments made by numerous top-level Republicans including Senate leader Mitch McConnell and pussy-grabber-in-chief Donald J. Trump trivialize women’s experiences. They may or may not have a similar position about male rape victims. Mr. Trump, an admitted sex deviant, took pride in boasting about how he burst in to the girl’s dressing room to gawk at the semi-naked underage girls at his 1997 Miss Teen USA pageant. Perhaps where he’s headed, our nation’s top monster will learn otherwise the hard way.

If the punishment is to fit the crime.

(Our columnist would like to thank Marty Balin and the late Paul Kantner for the use of my favorite line from their song “We Can Be Together.”)

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #012: Wind Sprints To Justice

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #012: Wind Sprints To Justice

As we await next week’s sentencing of Bill Cosby, our media is fraught with stories about sexual manipulation and its aftermath. Right now, the whole Brett Kavanaugh thing is foremost in our minds, and is so for a variety of important reasons.

Much of the focus comes from the unimpeachable fact that, morally and ethically, Judge Kavanaugh is somewhere to the right of Caesar. He believes the President has near absolute powers that go far, far beyond those suggested in our Constitution. In fact, his statements negate the reasons for the first American Revolution, the one where Americans risked death and committed an act of treason by rebelling against the king of England.

George Washington refused to accept levels of power that do not go as far as those advocated by Judge Kavanaugh. The judge thinks the unanimous decision of the Supreme Court that forced Richard Nixon to comply with the lawful subpoena that made Nixon surrender the White House secret tapes, thereby bringing his presidency to an end, to have been a big mistake. Even some folks on the far right gulped at that one.

He has a lifetime of utterances that state the Supreme Court’s Roe v Wade decision also was wrong and should be reversed. Once he, himself, was nominated for the Supreme Court he told some concerned people that he regarded that decision as “settled law.” Hardly anybody believes this: he still enjoys the enthusiastic support of those who are committed to ramming their religious views down the throats of all Americans. Besides, if he’ll lie to Congress – which is a felony – then he’ll lie to a bunch of liberal chicks who just happen to be members of Congress.

And now he’s the subject of a complaint from a woman who claims to have been subject to unwanted groping and attempted rape while a teenager from an equally young Brett Kavanaugh. His defenders believe this is bullshit for several reasons: why would he lie about stuff that won’t put him in prison due to the statues of limitations, this whole thing happened several decades ago so WTF, this whole thing happened several decades ago and the complainant waited all that time until Judge Kavanaugh was nominated for the Supreme Court, everybody was drunk at the time so WTF, and, hey, the complainant wasn’t actually raped so WTF.   Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #012: Wind Sprints To Justice”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #011: I Won’t Toe Your Line Today

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #011: I Won’t Toe Your Line Today

There I was at the immigration scene / Shining and feeling clean, could it be a sin? / I got stopped by the immigration man / He said he doesn’t know if he can let me in

There’s this disc jockey I’ve been listening to and learning from for about, oh good grief, almost 45 years now. Her name is Terri Hemmert, she’s been on WXRT-Chicago all that time after doodling around in Rochester NY. Spending 45 years at one radio station is not simply an accomplishment. Unless you own the station, it’s the rarest of rarities. And for good reason, the same reason that, through the miracle of the Internet, I still listen to her after all this time. Live and learn. It’s a good thing.

Sometimes learning actually is relearning; those slap-your-forehead moments that makes you wonder why you hadn’t thought of that. Last Monday Terri played Immigration Man, written and recorded by Graham Nash and David Crosby back in 1972. She noted that this song actually is more relevant today than it was when it was released.

Which is when I slapped my forehead.  Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #011: I Won’t Toe Your Line Today”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #009: Finger From Beyond The Grave!

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #009: Finger From Beyond The Grave!

It’s impolite to joke around over somebody’s death, but when it’s the deceased who make the joke from beyond the grave, hey, credit the jokester and pass the gag around. It’s his legacy… and, well, it’s also really cool.

There were few issues where I was on the same side as Senator John McCain. However — and this is in keeping with my past bleatings here at Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind — McCain wasn’t a kneejerk ideologue. He listened to people. Sometimes, after reflection, he’d change his mind or position. This is not what we’ve been getting from our politicians, but it is what we expect from real human beings.

In contrast, there is our president. He is not an ideologue either, but the difference is McCain actually had ideas. POTUS brags how he maliciously maintains his ignorance. He supports whatever he last heard on Fox And Friends is his policy, until he’s next distracted by something even more dark and shiny.

Yes, Donald Trump got his start as a villain in a Max Fleischer cartoon.  Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #009: Finger From Beyond The Grave!”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #008: America: The New Zen Question

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #008: America: The New Zen Question

If there is life after death, George Orwell must be contemplating suicide.

This past week, former New York City Mayor and Republican candidate for President Rudy Giuliani told Meet The Press’s Chuck Todd “Truth isn’t truth.” Todd, clearly exasperated, responded “Mr. Mayor, the truth is the truth. This is going to be a bad meme.” He was giving Rudy a chance to immediately walk that one back. Instead, Giuliani responded “Don’t do this to me,” as though Chuck put that asinine statement in his mouth.

It’s not that Giuliani hadn’t made statements almost as insane before. But, in the words of Boris the Hangman, “as you can see, this one is a doozy!”

His comment on the relationship between North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un and American imbecile Donald Trump: “Kim Jong-un got back on his hands and knees and begged for it, which is exactly the position you want to put him in.”  Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #008: America: The New Zen Question”

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #007: People Are Scary

Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #007: People Are Scary

This might seem odd coming from a person a person who has labored in the ether for nearly all of this century, but somethings – often – all-too-many of the denizens of the internet scare the shit out of me.

I’m not about to make one of those mindless pleas for civility. We have no universal standards for such, and what offends some is thought to be outspoken and necessary to others. When it comes to freedom of expression, I am such an absolutist that I think banning cigarette commercials from the airwaves is in opposition to the First Amendment. No, I do not smoke cigarettes, nor do I believe corporations have the same rights as do actual human beings. But, you will note, I do capitalize the initial letters in the term “First Amendment.” For some, the First Amendment guarantees our largely unenforced freedom of religion provisions. For me, the First Amendment is my religion.

But I am making a plea for people owning up to the courage of their convictions. Say what you want but take responsibility for your actions. We misquote Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes’ statement that you can’t shout fire in a theater. What Holmes wrote was “the most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man in falsely shouting fire in a theater and causing a panic” (emphasis mine).

Besides, that was overturned in 1969. You are free to say what you want, but that freedom doesn’t take you off the hook from taking responsibility for what you say. Call me a child molester and I’ll sue you into the next reboot.

Which brings me to Batwoman. Well, more to the point, to actor Ruby Rose who will be playing Batwoman in the CW’s Arrowverse teevee shows. Immediately after Ms. Rose’s assignment was announced, the internet went batshit.  Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mind #007: People Are Scary”

Weird Scenes Inside the Gold Mind #006: Race and Treason

Weird Scenes Inside the Gold Mind #006: Race and Treason

I would like to recommend an article published by The Guardian earlier this week. It is a study of the Confederacy, the Confederate flag, and the part each plays in the lives of Mississippians today. You might learn a thing or two. I did.

The piece largely consists of interviews with Mississippians, mostly white, about the symbol of the Confederate army which was then, and certainly is now, symbolic to many of slavery, rape, murder, and treason. Some Mississippians, including some black Mississippians, consider it a historical reflection of their heritage. I don’t understand why one would want to institutionalize a heritage of slavery, rape, murder, and treason, and the Guardian article does shed some light on that.  Continue reading “Weird Scenes Inside the Gold Mind #006: Race and Treason”