[Blogaramians: Blogarama renders the links in my columns useless. Please click on View original to solve the problem/access lotsa columns.]
Dear (eventual) Grandstickies & Great-Grandstickies,
What follows is a snapshot of my/our current zeitgeist. For purposes of clarification, my refers to me, our — varies.
The meaning of our primarily ranges from my extended family to my country, the USA, and points in between. Occasionally, and broadly speaking, "our" includes H. sapiens in general. I pledge to at least try to clearly differentiate. This applies/will apply to all of my State of the Zeitgeist columns.
[Just what are you on about now? inquires Dana, imaginary gentlereader.]
Your back! I cleverly reply. All three of my imaginary writing companions have been away on an extended "abduction" with my alien friends the Tralfamidorians.
Where's Iggy (imaginary grandsticky) and Marie-Louise (my drop-dead gorgeous muse)? I ask.
[Unpacking, and trying to find room to display the half a ton of cosmic tchotchkes they brought back with them.]
The point I'm trying to make about my/our is merely one of clarification. While my audience is a fairly small one I literally have readers from all over the planet Earth. Which sounds cool, and it is, but...
[THIS is clarification?]
Patience. I started blogging primarily as a way to leave a bit of me behind for my daughter and her snificant other, grown-up (eventual) grandkids and (potential, but virtually inevitable) great-grandkids. Also, the vague/slight possibility that I would go viral in some form or fashion and make some money.
I'm still waiting for the money to start pouring in. The ads on my site only pay slightly more than nothing if someone clicks on 'em. You gotta' have a lot more readers than I do to make money that way (via high volume clicking). But that's fine, I enjoy writing.
However, when I started, I didn't think about the fact that, at least potentially, I could reach anyone on the planet Earth who has internet access. Google, who provides a free and relatively easy to use platform for Bloggers called Blogger (clever, huh?) also provides statistics. My favorite one is how many people in a given country are reading my shtuff.
I'm basically just another mostly unknown writer here, there, and also, there. However, in the course of the last week, for example, folks from the US, Israel, France, Brazil, Indonesia, Russia, India, Germany, the UK, and China (China!), have read my column(s). There are other countries as well but Google only lists the top ten.
How cool is that! Well, I think it's cool.
Therefore, international gentlereaders, if you ever find me to be parochial or just another arrogant American, I (mostly) apologize. Also, I apologize to anyone that speaks/reads English as a second language for my tendency to mangle/invent words. OK, let us never speak of this again.
And now (finally), ladies and gentlemen, the State of the Zeitgeist, number three.
° A recent column of mine, Purposeful Polarization, was about how the Depublicrats and the majority of the members of the Infotainment Industrial Complex are attacking the Donald and attempting to bog his administration down by claiming that, with the help of Russia and the Pooteen, he stole our last presidential election.
Although his enemies, so far at least, are still light on actual evidence and heavy on speculation, they continue to be quite successful. One of the reasons for their success is one of the downsides of the living in the Dizzinformation Age. That is, the ability to spin information rapidly and widely, be it correct or otherwise.
There are, of course, endless new stories, memes, and developments — reported on, endlessly, by the endless news and social media. However, if the US was a radio station (Start your day with KUSA!) we would be in the midst of an all, the Donald, all the time marathon.
Healthcare and the tax code are a mess. The national debt increases daily. Underfunded/unfunded pension and social welfare promises keep expanding. The Donald tweets; Congress holds hearings and conducts investigations.
° In other news... it was widely underreported, barely mentioned in fact, that the cost of complying with The Gummit's rules and regs increased by 700,000,000 bucks from 2008 to 2016 while the tribune of the little people was in charge. If The Gummit's rules and regs were a country it would have the seventh largest economy on the planet Earth with a GDP of 1,700,000,000,000 bucks per year.
Mr. Obama likes to encourage the young and idealistic to pursue careers in the public sector, as opposed to the money-grubbing private sector that pays for the public sector. Mr. O. just spent 8,100,000 bucks on a new home in the Imperial Capital. He owns another home in California. He owns another home in Hawaii. I see his point.
° From the Wailing and Gnashing of Teeth Desk: The Donald has decided that America is withdrawing from the Paris Climate Accords. Fresh meat for professional wailers and gnashers.
His enemies declared that he had doomed Earthlings to eventual extinction. If anything, I'm understating their reaction. "Donald Trump Pulls US Out Of Paris Accord In Crushing Blow To Climate Fight" declared the Puffington Host.
He said that he was open to renegotiation. China is bringing coal-fired power plants online even as we speak (but promises to start cleaning up their act at some point down the road). He's got a problem with that. Me too.
For some reason, he also has a big problem with the provision that calls for handing over billions to that zany gang of famously effective bureauons at the United Nations to pay for developing sustainable power in third-world fever swamps.
Now personally, at the risk of being accused of peeing in the punchbowl, I feel the need to point out that our constitution clearly states that presidents can't sign a treaty without Senate approval.
Mr. O. says they can, and he did. Trust him, it's not technically a treaty, the provisions are non-binding. Question, If the provisions are non-binding, what's the point? See last week's column, Where Were You When the Lights Went Out, for the answer.
° On the endless freakin' hearings and investigations front, James Comey, the former head of the FBI recently, You're Fired!, by the Donald testified that... well... it depends on whose spin you trust the most. Mr. Comey did provide some moral clarity for the masses by explaining that when officials of The Gummit leak information, while this practice may be sleazy, if the info's not classified, it's legal. "Besides," he said, "I'm outta' here and I gotta' BOOK deal! Nah-nah-nah-NAH-nah!"
° In celebrity news, a relatively obscure comedienne was condemned by various and sundry in various and sundry ways for crafting an image of herself holding the bloodied, severed head of the Donald. She apologized and invoked a, I thought it was funny but I didn't think it through, defense. Her "joke" led to various and sundry crazies to make death threats, whereupon she called a press conference and declared herself to be the victim of the
And then, in the midst of this contentious kerfuffle concerning budget cuts that aren't budget cuts and treaties that aren't treaties, legal leaks by J. Edgar Hoover Jr. and decapitated presidents -- evil losers murdered some more infidels in London for the crime of not being Muslims. Poppa loves you.
Have an OK day.
[P.S. Gentlereaders, for 25¢ a week, no, seriously, for 25¢ a week you can become a Patron of this weekly column and help to prevent an old crank from running the streets at night in search of cheap thrills and ill-gotten gains.
If there are some readers out there that think my shtuff is worth a buck or three a month, color me honored, and grateful. Regardless, if you like it, could you please share it? There are buttons at the end of every column.]
©2017 Mark Mehlmauer (The Flyoverland Crank)
If you're reading this on my website (where there are tons of older columns, a glossary, and other goodies) and if you wish to react (way cooler than liking) -- please scroll down.