All Our Institutions

Recently I was reading about the Spanish-American War and the disastrous aftermath of the American occupation of the Philippines. As I read, it was difficult not to keep thinking about Iraq.

Anyway, there was a great quote from an American anti-imperialist of the time: Dewey took Manila with the loss of one man – and all our institutions.

Maybe history does repeat itself, no?



Had a flat tire yesterday. In a rare moment of mechanical dexterity, I successfully removed said flat tire and put on my doughnut; I was marginally proud of myself.

Today I go to the Tire Place to buy a new, you know, tire. The guy tells me “whoever put those lug nuts on the doughnut put them on backwards.”

“What an idiot,” I reply.

While waiting in the shop (for 2 hours) I am subjected to Fox News. It has been a long time since I watched this much cable news for such a sustained period of time. It has been a long time since I watched this much TV for a such a sustainted period of time.

For two hours they argued about lipstick. Do they always get so bent out of shape when a politician resorts to cliche? Seriously Barack – stop the cliches! Be original!

But wait – they’re not outraged by the cliche! They think it was a serious and personal attack!

I would like to think better of America right now. But I just got done watching two hours of Fox News.


I traveled to Chicago last weekend and rather than shell out big bucks for gas and even more for overnight parking, I took the Megabus. It was cheap, on schedule, clean and stress-free. During the trip I read, napped and did the crossword – all things that are much more difficult when you’re behind the wheel of your own car.

So if looking for cheap passage for a weekend trip, I highly recommend Megabus.

The Union Forever

Among the many ‘issues’ revolving around Sarah Palin’s brief but already horrifying fascinating campaign for Presiding Officer of the Senate is her association with a political party that advocates Alaska’s seccesion from the Union.  Like Zach, this issue seems more humorous than others raised, but I got to thinking: wouldn’t support for the dissolution of the United States kinda, you know, disqualify one to be Vice-President or (God forbid) President?

Apparently not.

Just as Dick Cheney was not the first sitting VP to shoot another man, there is a proud fascinating history of Vice Presidents who have openly supported the dissolution of the Union, and Ezra Klein was resourceful enough to find it. But (and I could be wrong here) I think the list is too short; I’m almost certain that John C. Calhoun (Blowhard- South Carolina) advocated seccession nonsense, though not, perhaps, while he was Andrew Jackson’s VP.