How To Be Hateful

Martin Shkreli As Seen By Court Artist

Some people have a unique ability to be hateful. Perhaps the most obvious example is one Martin Shkreli, who is quite possibly the most hated person in America today. A corrupt entrepreneur, Shkreli is perhaps most famous for raising the price of a vital medication from $13.50 to $750.00 per pill. That, however, is not why he was brought to justice: Rather it was his securities fraud violations of SEC procedures while running MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare. Now it appears that his behavior during and after the trial might result in a heavier legal penalty when the court reconvenes.

The court artist portrait of Shkreli above makes him look like an ogre from a fairy tale. Or look at this depiction:

Gollum + Shkreli


Only in the case of our current president have I seen someone who is so determined to be widely hated. There is one problem with that type of provacative behavior: One usually pays for it in the end.

Up-Yours-Ism

Promise Them Anything, But Give Them the Finger

It has not taken long for Americans to find out what they have in President Trumpf. During the campaign, a number of different positions were taken. Let’s face it: Many of them were contradictory. What we ended up with was lots of promises, few of which were kept. Our Presidente is not a particularly bright man whose political philosophy appears to be Up-Yours-Ism.

Unless you are either a billionaire or a tyrannical dictator, you are probably a pathetic loser. So, basically, Up Yours! Remember that famous White House Press Dinner at which Barack Obama lambasted Trumpf, who sat glowering in the audience, resolved to completely undo everything his predecessor ever did. (And he’s still trying to prosecute “Crooked Hillary.”) This is a man who wants to get even with everybody who ever mocked him—and that includes most of the American people. They don’t like me? Then, Up Yours!

Funny thing, though, it’s not always a good thing to have all your wishes come true. Look at the stories of Croesus and Midas. Trumpf lives all by himself in the White House, which he thinks is a dump, probably because it doesn’t have gold plumbing fixtures. His wife doesn’t want to live with him. He doesn’t trust anyone for more than the lifetime of a fruit fly. His only out is golf at various clubs he owns around the world. Plus, he must be aware that the wolves are gathering in an attempt to put an end to his presidency. But that only feeds the troll, to which his inevitable response is: Up Yours!

This is a new experience for the American people, being treated as a bunch of losers by a self-styled billionaire. How does he feel about those ever-declining poll numbers. Wait, never mind! That’s just fake news. Up Yours!

 

The Dumpster Fire Spreads

There’s a Lot of GOP Hotfoots in Washington Today

The Trumpf Administration (it’s actually funny to think of it as an “Administration”—more like a dumpster fire that just got out of control) is so ridiculously beleaguered that it’s almost funny. Except that it’s happening to each and every one of us. We escaped having a health program that would have demised several million Americans rather unceremoniously.

But there will be other chances, what with the other pending items on the GOP agenda. After today, though, I can’t see ol’ Turtleface McConnell smiling with any degree of sincerity.

And, as more Trumpf insiders become outsiders, I can see more embarrassing stories bedeviling the man from Mar-a-Lago. Such as the time the Presidente called in Reince Priebus to the Oval Office for the sole purpose of killing a fly.

It Started Small but Grew to Engulf a Whole Nation

It looks now as if Trumpf has enemies in both major political parties. Do you suppose that eventually, someone will develop the spine to remove this chucklehead from office?

That Stupid Wall

Will There Be Any Guard Towers Manned by Machine-Gunners?

Last night I was reading author Ursula LeGuin’s blog, and I came upon this poem about Trumpf’s infamous wall written by a poet who is part Mexican Yaqui Indian and part European ancestry.  I am referring to Anita Endrezze. Her poem is called, appropriately, “The Wall.”

The Wall

Build a wall of saguaros,
Butterflies, and bones
of those who perished
in the desert. A wall of worn shoes,
dry water bottles, poinsettias.
Construct it of gilded or crazy house
mirrors so some could see their true faces.
Build a wall of revolving doors
or revolutionary abuelas.
Make it high as the sun, strong as tequila.
Builders of sugar skulls. Adobe or ghosts.
A Lego wall or bubble wrap. A wall of hands
holding hands, hair braided from one woman
to another, one country to another.
A wall made of Berlin. A wall made for tunneling.
A beautiful wall of taco trucks.
A wall of silent stars and migratory songs.
This wall of solar panels and holy light,
panels of compressed Cheetos,
topped not by barbed wire but sprouting
avocado seeds, those Aztec testicles.
A wall to keep Us in and Them out.
It will have faces and heartbeats.
Dreams will be terrorists. The Wall will divide
towns, homes, mountains,
the sky that airplanes fly through,
with their potential illegals.
Our wallets will be on life support
to pay for it. Let it be built
of guacamole so we can have a bigly block party.
Mortar it with xocoatl, chocolate. Build it with coyote howls
and wild horses drumming across the plains of Texas,
from the memories
of hummingbird warriors and healers.
Stack it thick as blood, which has mingled
for centuries, la vida. Dig the foundation deep.
Create a 2,000 mile altar, lit with votive candles
for those who have crossed over
defending freedom under spangled stars
and drape it with rebozos,
and sweet grass.
Make it from two-way windows:
the wind will interrogate us,
the rivers will judge us, for they know how to separate
and divide to become whole.
Pink Floyd will inaugurate it.
Ex-Presidente Fox will give it the middle finger salute.
Wiley Coyote will run headlong into it,
and survive long after history forgets us.
Bees will find sand-scoured holes and fill it
with honey. Heroin will cover it in blood.
But it will be a beautiful wall. A huge wall.
Remember to put a rose-strewn doorway in Nogales
where my grandmother crossed over.
pistols on her hips. Make it a gallery of graffiti art,
a refuge for tumbleweeds,
a border of stories we already know by heart.

Anita Endrezze

I love the heart behind this poem. Maybe it’s not perfect, but it adequately chides the Cheeto-headed mofo for his stupid ideas, none of which he is capable of putting into action as yet. And never, I hope.

 

Reckless Driving—With Impunity—At Least, So Far!

A Crazy Man Is Behind the Wheel. When Will We Apprehend Him?

After some six months in office, President Trumpf is turning out to be the cray man I thought he would be. I still remember the worst night of my life, watching the election returns coming in while I was twisting and turning in a hotel in Quito, Ecuador. (Note: Although I was not in the U.S. at that time, I had voted before I left on my vacation.)

It is time to bring the Trumpf to account for his many crimes—and his “you can’t catch me” attitude. What are we waiting for? Child pornography on his computer? Goosing Brigitte Macron in front of her French President husband? An executive order to have Liberals castrated?  Sodomizing Hillary and Chelsea Clinton in front of Congress? Banishing Barack Obama to Kenya? Regardless what he does, he can continue to rely on his core supporters, consisting of the 40% of eligible voters who don’t give a sh*t what happens to our country, especially to the city slickers on the East and West Coasts.

I think we have to be created. Perhaps we should pass out free Oxycontin and other opioids in those states that voted most heavily for him. Those voters should not be immune from sharing in their President’s horrible fate, whatever it might be. Since Trumpf hates Iran so much, perhaps the ancient Persian form of execution known as “The Boat,” or Scaphism, would be appropriate:

The intended victim was stripped naked and then firmly fastened within the interior space of two narrow rowing boats (or hollowed-out tree trunks) joined together one on top of the other with the head, hands and feet protruding. The condemned was forced to ingest milk and honey, and more honey would be poured on the victim to attract insects, with special attention devoted to the eyes, ears, mouth, face, genitals, and anus. In some cases, the executioner would mix milk and honey and pour that mixture all over the victim. The victim would then be left to float on a stagnant pond or be exposed to the sun. The defenseless individual’s feces accumulated within the container, attracting more insects which would eat and breed within the victim’s exposed flesh, which—pursuant to interruption of the blood supply by burrowing insects—became increasingly gangrenous. The individual would lie naked, covered from head to toe in milk, honey, and his own feces. The feeding would be repeated each day in some cases to prolong the torture, so that fatal dehydration or starvation did not occur. Death, when it eventually occurred, was probably due to a combination of dehydration, starvation, and septic shock. Delirium would typically set in after a few days.

In case you didn’t know, I really don’t like the man.

 

In the Rough

If You Don’t Have the Right Values, Victory Will Always Slip Between Your Fingers

Sometimes, the worst thing that can happen to one is to be victorious—especially when one is a dishonest real estate promoter who has a record of fraud and lying. I was amused to find that Trumpf (pronounce it with a distinctive razzberry sound at the end) is already raising money for his re-election. Of course, he will find deluded people who will donate to his re-election campaign. Add to that the possibility that he will win again.

Even if he wins, happiness will elude him, as it always eludes people like him whose values are specious. For whatever reason, his wife refuses to live with him. (She knows.) Our presidente divides the world into “winners” and “losers”: By definition, he is with the former. If I would have to be like him to be classified with the winners, I would just as soon be a loser, thank you.

I don’t quote the Bible often, but I have always been intrigued by Ecclesiastes 9:11, which the King James text translates as:

I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.

Don’t worry too much about Trumpf’s re-election. He looks dissipated and unhealthy, living on a diet of fast food that could not be good for him. There is a decent chance that this ultimate winner will soon be fighting for his life.

 

The Frogs Who Wanted a King

From Ancient Greece Comes the Story About What We Have Become

In case you are not familiar with this ancient tale by Aesop, here is a retelling from a website called Fables of Aesop:

The Frogs were tired of governing themselves. They had so much freedom that it had spoiled them, and they did nothing but sit around croaking in a bored manner and wishing for a government that could entertain them with the pomp and display of royalty, and rule them in a way to make them know they were being ruled. No milk and water government for them, they declared. So they sent a petition to Jupiter asking for a king.

Jupiter saw what simple and foolish creatures they were, but to keep them quiet and make them think they had a king he threw down a huge log, which fell into the water with a great splash. The Frogs hid themselves among the reeds and grasses, thinking the new king to be some fearful giant. But they soon discovered how tame and peaceable King Log was. In a short time the younger Frogs were using him for a diving platform, while the older Frogs made him a meeting place, where they complained loudly to Jupiter about the government.

To teach the Frogs a lesson the ruler of the gods now sent a Crane to be king of Frogland. The Crane proved to be a very different sort of king from old King Log. He gobbled up the poor Frogs right and left and they soon saw what fools they had been. In mournful croaks they begged Jupiter to take away the cruel tyrant before they should all be destroyed.

“How now!” cried Jupiter “Are you not yet content? You have what you asked for and so you have only yourselves to blame for your misfortunes.”

In the archaic L’Estrange version, the moral is: “The mobile are uneasie without a ruler: they are as restless with one; and the oft’ner they shift, the worse they are; so that government or no government; a king of God’s making, or of the peoples, or none at all; the multitude are never to be satisfied.”

As I sat down reading in the Santa Monica Main Library this morning, I noticed that the people seated around me look as if they had lost their battle with life. One black man alternately wept and swore; and a bearded youth in a hoodie kept calling his family to beg money for his anxiety medications. The coffee shops are full of people with notebook computers, undoubtedly using social media to communicate with people they don’t know or really care about. The natives appear to be restless.

Well, We Got Our King

This restlessness is probably what elected our current President, who is very much like Aesop’s King Stork. He seems to be comfortable only with billionaires and despots. And what can we expect from him? The answer, in one word is covfefe, and lots of it—brown, gooey, and pungent.