Friday, June 01, 2007

A random look at a bunch of headlines

These pretty little headlines all bunched up together in a corner of the NYT:
I had forgotten Dr. Kevorkian was in jail! You know what? I'm with him. I believe we should not penalize assisted suicide. I think it is brutal to prolong the lives of people who are suffering terminally and who wish for their suffering (and that of their loved ones) to end. I think it is brutal that this old man had to spend 8 years in prison for trying to do something with a conscience. Medicine has progressed so much that people are living longer and longer, some of them artificially propped up by science way beyond their human capacity. To prolong life no matter what, without taking into account the quality of that life, the enormity of the suffering, seems barbaric and arrogant to me. Death is a part of life and when the time comes naturally, perhaps we should let it run its natural course. But those who hijack morality in this land speak an absolutist discourse that does not ever take into account individual circumstances, only holy platitudes. There could be legal guidelines to ensure that assisted suicide is a decision made with dignity and without coercion, and that has to be better than keeping teminally ill people alive who want and need to rest.Listen to this guy:
Mr. Bartlett told White House reporters he admires Mr. Bush because “the man I met almost 15 years ago is still the same person I know today,” one whose life-pillars are “faith, family and friends.”
Fuck faith, fuck family and fuck friends. If you happen to be the POTUS, perhaps your "life-pillars" (puhleeze with the new agey, puke inducing evangelical speech) should be something along the lines of keeping this nation out of trouble with dignity and respect.
One would think that being Governor of Texas and then being President of the country would help you mature and improve over the irresponsible fratboy you used to be 15 years ago, but it is evident that this is not the case with Bush. So Perhaps Mr. Bartlett's comment is rather barbed, whether intentionally or not.
It reminds me of the British actor, I believe it was John Gielgud, who had to go backstage and offer an opinion after a colleague's particularly terrible performance on the boards. When asked by his thespian friend whether Gielgud thought he was good, Gielgud replied: "Good is not the word."
Or Coughs on a Plane. Or Paranoid Nation. Or call Oprah, Why Dontcha. Or How This Country Is Endangered By People Who Don't Say What They Really Mean. The "cautious health officials" (not cautious enough, it seems), should have told this man: YOU CANNOT GET ON A PLANE. PERIOD. Instead they pussyfooted like the best Democrat. You tell me if you understand these instructions:

Mr. Speaker, 31, said he was told he was not contagious or a danger to anyone, but that officials would prefer that he did not fly. His father, also a lawyer, recorded the meeting, he said. “My father said, “OK, now, are you saying, prefer not to go on the trip because he’s a risk to anybody, or are you saying that to cover yourself,” he said. “And they said, we have to tell that to cover ourself, but he’s not a risk.”
Covering ourselves seems to be the national pastime. Everything everybody ever does in this country is cover their ass first. Well, this time they didn't cover it enough. But then listen to one of the angry passengers:

Jason Vik, 21, a passenger on the outgoing flight who just graduated from the University of South Carolina, Aiken, is now waiting for results of a TB skin test. Mr. Vik spoke angrily about Mr. Speaker’s behavior. “He stepped on a plane with 487 people, one of the largest aircraft that Boeing makes, and he put us all at risk, just so he could go get married,” he said.

Not just so he could go have a vacation, and waste his time abroad, or just he could go sit on a plane and cough all over the pretzels, no. The poor man was getting married. Of course he wasn't going to change a simple little wedding in Greece because some people told him they would "prefer him not to fly". Geez. And this is a college graduate?

Now this one takes the cake. Now we can't even brush our teeth with our favorite cheapo toothpaste from China, which comes with a bonus poison. Wherefore? What gives? Isn't this the land of consumer choice? Aren't we supposed to exercise our freedom to choose whatever toothpaste we see fit, especially if we can find it in $1 stores? What is this country coming to? Tyranny, I tell you.
This is what I call a killer bargain.

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