Thursday, May 01, 2008

I Missed Matlock!

In my seemingly nonstop descent into senior citizendom, I went to bed at 9pm last night; out like a light by 9:30. And, as you can see, in further senior citizen style, I'm up nice and early to pee.

So besides missing American Idol (I see that our little strawberry shortcake Brooke was voted off finally), I probably missed my Matlock and my Florence Henderson Show too. So no recap on any of those for you today, I'm afraid.

So what's shakin. Oh, we have a group in DC called Women's Voices Women Vote who apparently has a pattern of sowing mass confusion among voters on the eve of important Democratic primaries. I wish I could say that Rove is on the board, but it turns out to be, sadly for Democrats, former Clintonland over there. Read the article: apparently this is the 11th time they've done this, they have been censured by state attorneys general and have so far been all "sorry you feel that way" about telling registered voters via robocalls that they are not actually registered to vote after the registration deadline has passed in their state. Also interesting to note that they supposedly are targeting single females, but the majority of calls are going to African American married households. You may disagree, but if it happens once it's probably an error. If it happens eleven times in eleven states, what you have is a concerted effort to suppress voter turnout. And by an organization run by Democrats. That's nice.

Next, if you haven't already Netflixed it, you should get 30 Days. It's by the inimitable Morgan Spurlock of Supersize Me fame. We just watched the first three episodes, and they are fantastic. In the show, an ordinary person does something completely new for 30 days. First, Morgan and his fiancee live on minimum wage for 30 days. They move to Columbus, leave their cell phones and credit cards behind, find an apartment, find jobs, and live for a month like everyone else on minimum wage. Whatever your opinion on the issue of wages is, believe me, this show will blow your mind open as you wonder how ANYONE does it. The people they meet in their jobs ALL work, ALL day, and all are struggling and barely getting by. These are not welfare people hanging out on corners; these are 64 year old day laborers getting on buses at 5am to get work. It's harrowing to watch, especially when you consider that it's bone-shattering even for the Spurlocks who are childless, white, educated and going home on day 31. It will open your mind. Next, a man spends 30 days pursuing health and youth by going on a micronutrient and testosterone replacement program. I won't ruin it for you, but it's also pretty harrowing to watch, especially when you see what it all does to him in the name of youth and vigor. The third episode is called Muslim in America. An ordinary married-guy-with-a-kid from West Virginia spends 30 days in Dearborn, Michigan living with a Muslim couple and living like a Muslim. The WVa guy is a Bible-believing Christian, and it is just an amazing episode because it serves to explode stereotypes on both sides. The Christian wants to learn about Islam but finds himself unable to pray in the mosque for fear that he might be saying something that betrays his own faith. At the same time, as he dresses and eats and lives as a Muslim he begins to experience the prejudice faced by them, starting at his own Charleston, Wva airport where he says he's never, ever been stopped in all his years, but once he put on the hat and the robe, couldn't get through security without almost stripping naked. Again, I won't ruin the show for you, but it's just fantastic. Each time you wonder if you'd have the stones to do something so out of your comfort zone for just one month, with no safety net. And then what does that tell you? Like, if you watch the minimum wage show and say, "No way would I do that," then perhaps your opinion of minimum wage might need an adjustment? It's a show that manages all at once to create discussion, discomfort and inspiration.

Next, if you want a one-stop media roundup on international news, go no further than It has an article on our sending of an additional aircraft carrier as a "reminder" to Iran (but it's not a buildup?), articles on the progress of the war in Iraq, and some good stuff on the situation that might be about to explode between Russia and Georgia. It's tempting to think, "oh that's not relevant to my life as an American." Read this stuff. At the very least, some of it might help explain why your bread costs $4 a loaf...

Oh, and speaking of buying that $4 bread, here's the timing of your "stimulus" check arrival, via The Moderate Voice, as well as a discussion of it's impact on stimulating the economy. Yeah, right. If you consider "buying the same groceries for 50% more money" to be just the jumpstart this economy needs.

So that should get you started for today. More later. Unless I fall asleep during the reruns of I Love Lucy.


Big Yellow Forehead said...

For starters, I'm glad Brooke is finally off. She blew Tuesday night, and she didn't even forget the lyrics this time!

Thanks for the info on Women's Voices Women Vote. Quite disturbing. Gee, I wonder why we don't hear about this on the news?

Now I really want to check out 30 Days!

Beach Bum said...

For kickers I heard somewhere that some OPEC official says that oil could or should reach 200$ a barrel. Like to see the republicans spin such an event and congress in general to come up with a stimulus as well.

Utah Savage said...

E, you are not only a wonderful writer, you are a wealth of useful and terrifying information. I come to read your blog each day because you educate me as well as wildly entertain me. You are a treasure. Or is that treasure trove? Did I spell that right?