Ship of fools

Does no ship have my name on it? Should I inflate a dinghy, leap overboard with a keg of fresh water, some fishhooks, and head out alone into open seas?

I switched ships just this year. I would have done it in 2008, but the presidential ballot did not cross the Rio Bravo in time to change my uniform, my sailor suit.

I have been a Democratic sailor all my life, but now I have joined the Republican Navy, and what a crazy crew it is. Just weeks ago, Todd Akin made some foolish comments about rape. The collectivists misinterpreted, both accidentally and on purpose, what he said.

I came to his rescue, injecting a little rationality into his unwise words, but I too was wildly misinterpreted, accidentally and on purpose.

And now another new crew mate of mine, an Indiana candidate named Richard Mourdock, had said out loud that a pregnancy resulting from rape is what God wants.

Jesus H. Christ! On what vessel am I sailing? A ship of loons?

The Taliban in Christian drag?

I would consider jumping back to my first ship at this point, but that vessel is not what it once was. It now waves the Jolly Roger of Collectivism, Redistribution and Race-Mongering.

It’s not my ship anymore.

But this Republican cruiser often doesn’t feel like my ship either. Sometimes yes, sometimes no. The problem is the fundamentalist Christian goofballs floating in the bilge.

I guess I belong on a Libertarian gunboat, but they don’t win elections because their Navy is far too small, and I want to sail with winners.

My ship’s cargo would have minimal government, lightly regulated capitalism, a strong military, legalized drugs, a tall border fence, abortion availability, and separation of church and state, though it would be fine to put a Christmas crèche in the public square.

English would be the Official Language.

And cultural diversity would be praised only when restaurant menus are involved.

47 thoughts on “Ship of fools”

  1. Pluralism demands that we hold our noses as we play in the political mud. Pig mud/bull mud, who knows but mud it is.


    1. I will join Steve on the good ship Liberty, where folks are the most rational and enlightened, although they are few and most seem to be my elders. One worries about this ship’s future.


    2. And we welcome fundamentalist Christians and other religions. We won’t be offended and act out when our beliefs differ, but the government won’t force us to live together and love each other.


  2. There are no positive words here for that televised speech/comment, there may be many other words– choose to sail on a finer ship.


    1. Andean: Mourdock clearly cannot think straight. I have a theory about the quality of candidates we get these days in both political parties. I think the “gotcha” philosophy of journalism these days discourages better people from running for office. The media did not used to be like it is today where anything that can be dug up and told to the world is dug up and told to the world. Who does not have skeletons in the closet? Few of us. The candidate pool has shrunk considerably. Sometimes it seems only extremists and crackpots are running for office.


      1. I read all your comments in the hopes I might find one with which I agree. This is one! We had an excellent candidate for our party up here a few years ago who, it was discovered, had an arrest for selling or possessing marijuana from his college days and had to withdraw after the press embarrassed the party half way through the campaign. Such a silly thing, specially in Canada.

        Another time Canada had a Premier (same as Governor) who was gay and did not try too hard to hide it. He was left alone by the press who reasoned that as long as it did not affect his ability to govern, they would leave him alone on that issue.

        After all, who would really want a representative who has lead a pure, sheltered enough life to have no skeletons hiding in their closet.


  3. I’ve thrown away my toys, even my drum and train.
    I wanna make some noise with real live aeroplanes.
    Some day I’m going to fly, I’ll be a pilot too.
    And when I do, how would you like to be my crew?

    On The Good Ship Lollipop.
    It’s a sweet trip to a candy shop
    Where bon-bons play
    On the sunny beach of Peppermint Bay.

    Lemonade stands everywhere
    Crackerjack bands fill the air
    And there you are
    Happy landing on a chocolate bar.

    See the sugar bowl do the tootsie roll
    With the big bad devil’s food cake.
    If you eat too much ooh-ooh
    You’ll awake with a tummy ache.

    On The Good Ship Lollipop
    It’s a night trip into bed you hop
    And dream away
    On The Good Ship Lollipop.


  4. People on the Republican ship called FDR a commie.

    Now they call BHO a socialist

    I do not think they have changed much, that crew.

    The two presidents who have done the most to save capitalism stand accused by the GOP.

    Okay 🙂


    1. Ron: FDR was pretty much the Romney of his day, class-wise. Yeah, people called him all kinds of names.

      With all due respect, as they say, Obama has done squat for capitalism. Capitalism is creeping along in spite of Obama, not because of him.


  5. I do belong on a Libertarian gunboat,and they could win elections if the mainstream GOP establishment hadn’t stolen the primaries from Ron Paul.

    My ship’s cargo would have minimal government, lightly regulated capitalism, an adequate military, legalized drugs, no border fence, free IUDs, and separation of church and state, though it would be fine to put a Christmas crèche in the public square.

    English and Spanish would be the Official Languages.


    1. Andres: Nobody stole the primaries from Ron Paul. He just did not get enough votes. It likely would have helped if he were not such a grumpy old cuss. Elections are, to a great extent, popularity contests.


  6. The GOP cannot win without the support of the crackpot religious right and they know it. To this end, they have had to welcome them into the fold. The problem is they tend to eventually act like the crackpot religious right and when they do, the GOP is faced with the choice of distancing themselves from the crackpots and risk offending their voting friends thereby losing the election or continuing to accept them in the fold and offending everyone else, thereby losing the election.

    All these crackpot outbreaks will serve to keep genuine Republicans home on election day protesting this hijacking of their party.


  7. Is there a middle ground between “gotcha” and the old “gentleman’s agreement” where the boys in the pressroom politely look the other way, or allow an official to rephrase an unfortunate choice of words, in deference to authority? Readers (or the “audience” as they’re called now) should demand that kind of balance rather than getting sucked in to the spectacle of the “gotcha,” while reporters need to keep politicians on their toes. I work in a newsroom (also run by Hearst) and I often despair that our readers have lost interest, giving tacit permission for the bosses to cut back on staffing and resource. I never thought I’d miss those phone calls from cranky readers.


    1. Lee: Readers are called the audience now?! Jeez.

      Ah, phone calls from cranky readers. I do remember that, though I managed to dodge them most of the time by simply not answering the phone. They rarely called the copy desk anyway.


    1. Pinky: The NYT suggests that four more years of Obama would be good too.

      Interesting article. Didn’t read it all because it’s too long for my attention span. I have read of cancer disappearing on its own before, and I believe it. The body does strange things.


    2. If we paid attention to this article it would add another 20+ years to our lives. We should not just read it – but follow it. I go to sleep when I feel like it and take a nap when I feel like it. I eat fish 2- 3 times a week and consume a bottle of olive oil every month as a butter substitute on fresh bread from the bakery every morning and drink lots of coffee. When I get a sweet tooth I’ll eat several big spoons of honey with peanut butter and put hot sauce on nearly everything I eat.

      My doctor says I have low blood pressure and cholesterol and my lab report says I’m disgustingly healthy.


  8. Clearly Mourdock miss spoke. It’s hard to believe that anyone would think rape was God’s will. As a Christian, I believe there are times when an abortion is justified as in rape, incest and when the women’s health is at risk. However, I do not believe abortion is a means of birth control that the taxpayers should have to pay for. Maybe the bigger question is why are we aborting millions of babies each year. Could it be that our morals have decayed and there is no personal responsibility anymore?

    I do like your ships cargo and would love to come aboard.


    1. Jackie, I misspeak all the time. I may say, “I went out for dinner on Monday” when actually it was on Tuesday. I may say, “Jackie, this is my friend Jose” when actually his name is Filipe. These are misspeaks. If I say, “God intended your rape and subsequent pregnancy”, that is not a misspeak. That is idiotspeak and the person who speaks and believes these words and the candidate who supports this person does not deserve to represent my or your interests in Government. You cannot casually sweep this under the carpet.


        1. I re-listened to his clip and believe he considers the whole act to be god’s will. The bible makes it’s position on rape quite clear when it states a rape victim must marry her rapist. (Deuteronomy 22 – 28, 29).

          Just to add to the insanity of the issue.


    2. Jackie: I think you misunderstood Mourdock a bit. He did not exactly say that rape was God’s will. He said that if pregnancy follows, it’s with God’s approval. Perhaps a fine line, but it’s different.

      I totally understand Mourdock. He is one of the Christian fundamentalists (perhaps extremist is a better word) who believe that nothing happens in this world unless God lets it happen. If someone gets pregnant, no matter the circumstances, it’s because God let it happen. It is because God wants it.

      I understand his thinking, though I do not concur. The amazing part, however, is that he said it out loud during a campaign in which he hopes to win as many votes as possible. And in the very wake of the blowup over Todd Akin’s ill-considered comments. Did he check his brain at the door? Sometimes you just want to grab these guys and shake them to within an inch of their lives.

      As for aborting babies, from what I have read, if memory serves, there are many couples trying to adopt babies with little success. And we’re aborting babies at the same time.

      Have our morals decayed? Yes. Is there no personal responsibility anymore? Often no.


      1. 12 republican candidates plus the Ryan demand that women must carry a rapists baby to term. Many States give the rapist parental rights, including visitation.


        1. Here is a video of Ryan expounding on his “pro – life” belief. At about 53 seconds he states his personal position He goes on to say that he is part of the ticket and that Romney differs with him and that Romney’s ideas are better that what we have now. But he is very clear in that his personal beliefs allow for no exceptions.

          Go about half way down the page for the video.

          “I’m very proud of my pro-life record, and I’ve always adopted the idea that, the position that the method of conception doesn’t change the definition of life,”


        2. Croft: I can’t get that page to quit leaping around my screen, much less see the video. But I believe you. I know would not jive me.

          Ryan’s a confirmed Catholic, no doubt about it.

          But abortion, rape, birth control, all those things having to do with sex, are just smoke screens your lovers, the Democrats, are tossing out to hide the miserable job your guy Obama has done for four painful years, especially on the economic front. That’s what will defeat him on Nov. 6, not sex in all its varied forms, some nice, some not.


      2. I am not arguing with you as I know you do not concur with this extremist thinking but if the extremists believe that everything is god’s will, then wars, natural disasters, murders and child abuse as well as rape must also be god’s will. This thinking is what made me and religion part company.

        “After coming into contact with a religious man I always feel I must wash my hands”.
        -Friedrich Nietzsche


  9. I stand corrected. My comment about Mourdock should have been phrased differently. What he said was wrong and foolish.
    Croft, I’m not trying to sweep anything under the carpet as you suggest.


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