AIDS Activists “Pine” For Dubya?

Remember this sign that appeared in Minnesota a few months ago?


(Photo Credit: Bob Collins/Minnesota Public Radio)

The “culprits” behind it were a group of small business owners who “feel Washington is against them”.

But is it possible that some AIDS activists share the sentiment espoused in the billboard?

Speaking of 43, his fellow Republicans are worried about the potential negative impact of his soon-to-be-published memoirs.

One prominent conservative compared the Bushies’ public-relations savvy to LeBron James.

Ouch…

Imagine There’s No A/C…

It’s easy if you try. This fellow is even more idealistic than John Lennon, and based solely on “Imagine” that’s saying a lot.


♫ Some say I’m a dreamer but I’m not the only one ♫

Elsewhere around the Internets:

Forget false imprisonment, this momo should be locked up for uttering “Ironing is woman’s work”. Then in prison he can find out that gender roles get a tad blurry…

When an news item contains the phrase “Mexican Clown” it’s not going to be good and it isn’t.

Awesome article on Yankee Mariano Rivera, perhaps the best closer of all time and a seemingly model human being. I know he’s a Yankee but I just can’t bring myself to heap on him the same loathing I have for the rest of his teammates.

More World Cup fall out… Spain welcomes her heroes with style… Paul the Octopus wins something México will never win, a World Cup… Tell us how you really feel Johnny.

A study by the CDC? With collaboration from what, the state of Arizona? The goal of this study is laid bare for anyone willing to connect the dots, someone call Oliver Stone.

Next time you see a “metal detectorist” at the beach, give the man a wide berth.

[Photo Credit: Pixar]

Spain Wins The World Cup In Spite Of Debilitating Nike Ad

Truth be told, before yesterday the first part of the title was as absurd as “The Red Sox win the World Series” would have been 10 years ago or even “Longhorns top the Sooners” during the early naughts.

Spain’s National Team, La Furia Roja, had a knack for falling flat on their collective face World Cup after World Cup. This all changed yesterday to be sure, after La Furia Roja defeated the Netherlands, who have now lost 3 World Cup Finals (’74, ’78, 10), 1-0.

I believe however that the breakthrough which culminated yesterday began in Euro 2008, which the Spanish won by besting Germany by the same score they beat the Dutch yesterday. That tournament set them on a course of excellence, winning 35 matches in a row until they shockingly lost to the U.S. at the 2009 Confederations Cup held in South Africa.

They then proceeded to breeze through World Cup qualifiers, becoming a favorite to take home the hardware in South Africa entering as the #2 squad in the world according to FIFA. In their first World Cup match, La Furia Roja fell to the Swiss, prompting echoes of “Different World Cup, same old Spain”.

Spaniards readied themselves for another World Cup collapse by their beloved team, blame was sent down bizarre avenues.

Yet, here we are July 12, 2010 and the FIFA World Cup trophy will call Spain home for at least the next 4 years.

A more remarkable feat may be that Spain won despite three of their players’ involvement in Nike Soccer’s “Write the Future” ad (watch it here).

An ad made before the start of the World Cup featuring England’s Wayne Rooney, Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo, Italya’s Fabio Cannavaro, Ivory Coast’s Didier Drogba, France’s Franck Ribéry, Brazil’s Robinho and Ronaldinho. To say that the campaign was a poor prognosticator of World Cup success is a vast understatement, a rundown:

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I’m Just Sipping on Chamomile

Depression is no laughing matter and here is a slide show about the things one should say and not say a loved one who suffers from this disorder.

#10 on the “what not to say” list caught my eye,

Have you tried chamomile tea?

It caught my eye because:

1.  Of the sheer inanity of the suggestion

2.  Chamomile tea, in my small corner of Mexicaness, was touted as the the cure-all for a varied list of ailments.

Paralyzing stomachaches, debilitating headaches, searing chest pains all were said to succumb to the analgesic powers of the brew made from Matricaria recutita.

I can personally attest to its ability to scare away a good stomachache.

This reminds me of Chris Rock’s description of the health plan available to his family growing up:

That’s right. When l was a kid, we didn’t have no insurance. We didn’t have a damn thing.
You had to be damn near dead to see the doctor.

You had to be way past Robitussin.

That’s all we had when l was a kid: Robitussin.

No matter what you got, Robitussin better handle it.

”Daddy, l got asthma.”
-”Robitussin.”

”l got cancer.”
-”Robitussin.”

l broke my leg, Daddy poured Robitussin on it. ”Yeah, boy, let that ‘tussin get in there. Yeah, boy, let that ‘tussin get on down to the bone. The ‘tussin ought to straighten out the bone. lt’s good.”

Confessions Of An Edward Teamster

Disclaimer: This post is written by someone who has had an unnaturally obsession with the most popular products of George Lucas’ mind and as a result knows more about that ancient and distant galaxy than anyone outside of Skywalker Ranch has any business knowing.

Straight up, I have never read or watched anything from the Twilight franchise. Therefore I am singularly unqualified to critique the merits of said franchise. I do know that the young people eat this stuff up as if the antidote was in it.

Based on the few interactions I’ve had with the Twilight, it seems to be a love story about a whiny vampire and the even whinier heroine who loves him. A saga so shiny and happy that it makes Sylvia Plath’s work read like the complete and unabridged works of Barney the Dinosaur. (right)

But in this story, there is a wrinkle in the form a fellow who doesn’t seem so whiny, a ripped werewolf who in a past life constituted one half of the dynamic duo that was Shark Boy and Lava Girl.

Our whiny heroine can’t decide between the whiny vampire or the heavy-browed werewolf or as this writer put it,

Bella must choose between Ed the Undead and Jake the Pecs, a decision that seems to be, if you think about it, a straightforward choice between necrophilia and bestiality.

And you’ll never see this love story the same way ever again…

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A Hapsburg, LeBron and Martha Stewart Walk Into A Bar…

Carles Puyol (right) who looks like he just stepped out of a Hapsburg family portrait, heads Spain into the World Cup Final. As a descendant of the Hapsburg’s, Puyol will be looking for some payback by cracking some skulls against the Netherlands on Sunday

My guess is that since LeBron James missed not having a signing day presser coming out of high school, he’s making up for lost time with “The Decision”. Great column on the LeBron “saga” that  mercifully ends tonight.

When the folks at NASA aren’t trying to reach out to the Muslim world, they’re conducting valuable research.

Forget Wife Swap, how ’bout an old-fashioned spy swap? Makes me want to re-read The Cardinal of the Kremlin.

So now these “elites” will become embittered and “cling to martini glasses or environmentalism or antipathy towards people who don’t think like them or anti-American sentiment or anti-capitalism sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.” Right POTUS?

Unbelievable pictures of Monterrey in the aftermath of Hurricane Alex.

Holy poncho Batman! Martha Stewart had lengua, easily the most underrated “cut” of beef.

Caught this on PBS last night, I might or might not have almost shed a tear because of Jackie’s courage in the face of such bitter hatred.

[Photo Credit: Stuart Franklin/Getty Images Europe]

America: The World’s “Dictator”

At the Nigerian stop of his gringo-bashing tour, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the following before a packed house at the Iranian embassy in Ajuba,

They [America] are the self-proclaimed leaders and everybody should know that self-proclaimed leadership is dictatorship

In other words, America, I’m assuming he’s talking about the government not the people, is the world’s dictator due to the influence she has over vast swathes of the planet. Whether this influence/power translates into a dictatorship I can’t say, but I know that in Latin America most people would agree with the world’s most controversial engineer (below).


Curse the West and their decadent haircuts


Fact: Historically speaking, the U.S. has ill treated her neighbors to the south.

This has led to many of my fellow Spanish-speakers to view the U.S.A as a bully (justifiably so) who doesn’t let ethics/common decency get in the way of getting what she wants. That my countrymen and distant cousins further south elect individuals such as this election cycle after election cycle is another story.

It is important to note that nation-states don’t act based on altruism but rather on what’s best for them or the people in power of the nation-state. In a nation such as America, it is supposed to be “We the People” who, through the voting booth, hold the power.

As we all know, that is an illusion for elected officials here in this great nation are as corrupt and egotistical as anywhere else in the world. Most of the time, they don’t really give a rip about “We the People” but when they do it is for the express purpose of getting re-elected to posts that remind one of the lords of the manors of old. American elected officials are just better at mollifying the narod and through the press hoodwinking them into thinking that they enact laws that are in the best interest of the common good.

All that said, if there is going to be a World Wide Leader not named ESPN, and there has to be given human nature, John Lennon’s idealistic drivel notwithstanding, who would you rather have in that position than the United States of America?

The Soviets certainly weren’t up to the task, the Chinese might just bump America from the throne, but do we really want that, given China’s atrocious record in dealing with dissent?

For all of her past and present flaws, America has been a force for stability in this fallen world. Yes, she has acted in self-interest, but more often than not her self-preserving actions have been for the betterment of the world, her rescue of Western Europe during World War II might have been her finest moment. For all of Western Europe’s anti-Americanism, I wonder if they stop to think that a Nazi regime would be more favorable?

Ironically enough, many confuse the current American system to that of the Nazis. Such historical shortsightedness merits little or no commentary.

America has a form of government (totalitarian democracy), which is far from perfect, seems to be the best practical form of government under our fallen circumstances.

The inadequacies of the system just go to show how fallen this world really is.

Kabul: The New Live Music Capital Of The World

Look out Austin, you might have an usurper to your “Live Music Capital of the World” throne in the form of Kabul, yep, that Kabul.

At least judging by the enthusiasm and moxie of bands such as “Kabul Dreams”.  Check out their YouTube page here unless you think the Taliban’s ideology is just peachy keen.

They are profiled in the following story,

We’re the Tali-band! Afghan rockers challenge hardliners to a duel… with electric guitars

Bands such as this would have been jailed under Taliban rule, no doubt for using corrupt Western practices to pollute their religious utopia. In fact, when the Taliban were in power,

Playing musical instruments was banned. Singing was allowed, but only songs praising Allah or the Taliban.

Gee, that sounds like a lot of churches here in the States, not to mention universities, looking at you Bob Jones. Same tune, different key.

As for the music that is making the rounds in Afghanistan,

Rock music has made inroads since the fall of the Taliban. A smattering of music shops sell pirated CDs of Nirvana, Pearl Jam and other bands. Indian and Pakistani groups also are popular among the youth.

What? No one’s thought of slipping The (now disbanded) Afghan Whigs in to the mix? Or  at least Mr. Mister (below)


♫Take, these broken Whigs…♫

[Photo Credit: Tonymix’s Blog]

Brazilian Tomfoolery

No, I’m not talking about Luís Fabiano’s blatant double handball against Ivory Coast.

Speaking of Luís, he single-handedly almost derailed my rooting interest in the Verde-Amarela with his French-inspired antics but I digress.

No, the aforementioned tomfoolery involves actor Tom Cruise who was in Rio at the Brazilian premiere of his latest offering, Knight and Day.

It is well-documented that Maverick (at 5’7″) is considered short. I disagree, though that might have something to do with the fact that height is probably the only thing Mav and I have in common.

The generous people of Brazil gave Cruise a jersey, here’s the pic:

They even gave him the #10, reserved for the best player in a squad, but one wonders if the Last Samurai knows that Tomzinho means “Little Tom” in Portuguese.

Gotta love the Brazilians’ sense of humor.

Totalitarian Democracy

I became fascinated by the small island nation of Iceland in large part to Tom Clancy’s Red Storm Rising. A tome which probably doesn’t resonate with people who didn’t live during the Cold War, but which is a captivating and thrilling read.

I hope to visit the country at some point in my life, at least to see how they do Mexican food there…


Tabasco’s, a Mexican restaurant in Reykjavik (Photo Credit: Funofthefair)

One of Clancy’s subplots focuses on Iceland, it’s takeover by a Soviet Air Guards division and inevitable (Clancy is American after all) liberation by NATO forces led by U.S. Marines aided by a scrawny Air Force weatherman and his merry band.

So naturally, when I ran across the following article, Is Iceland a Totalitarian State?, I decided to check it out,

  1. Because it’s about Iceland
  2. Totalitarian __________ and Iceland seem incongruous

Needless to say, the article was eye-opening for it’s description of how a seemingly free, liberal even and democratic society can be anything but. And also for its relevancy to the way America is governed.

An excerpt,

Totalitarianism is a political system in which the state recognizes no limits to its authority and strives to regulate every aspect of public and private life. J.L. Talmon used the term “totalitarian democracy” to refer to a system of government in which lawfully elected representatives maintain the integrity of a nation state whose citizens, while granted the right to vote, have little or no participation in the decision-making process of the government.

It has a certain ring of familiarity to it, no?