Friday, April 28, 2006

Dear God, Got Gas?

This just in, from ABC NEWS, via other "well-connected" sources:

Fed up with the supposedly "skyrocketing" (???) price of gas, some people are turning from the power of the pump (and their usually firm faith in supply and demand) to the power of PRAYER. See the ABC story HERE.

Well, does God have gas? Does he deal in the stuff? Would God even stoop to USE gas? I mean, he's omniscient. He KNOWS what it's doing to his creation.

And if gas is a heavenly commodity, how much is a gallon going for up THERE?

Oh, I don't know. Maybe God is on the side of Big Oil and likes these obscene profits. Maybe he's a die-hard fan of capitalism, a supply side, trickle down guy himself. I don't know. On the other hand, maybe his sympathies can be swayed to see it your way and fill your tank without your even leaving home. Cheap gas? Why not free gas? Why not gas and groceries with free home delivery?

As a psychologist so telling reminded me a while back, as much as some of us with IQs over 100 might tend to forget, humans are primarily irrational. And even a few of the clergy agreed that this praying-for-cheap-gas is a bit unorthodox. But hey, they went along with it and even organized sessions in the nation's capital to focus their powers of prayer.

Heaven bound, it seems, some are or think they are - in a gas-guzzling SUV.

Pretty soon, heaven will look a lot like an upscale garage in the suburbs.

In somebody's dreams....

Meanwhile, though I personally don't think God even drives, I do think Jesus, who did live on Earth according to some earthly limitations and desires, would, if he weren't walking or taking the bus, be driving an old but well-maintained Honda Civic. Civics have always gotten way up in the 30-40 MPG range. And he'd be big into ride shares, for sure - though it is hard to fit twelve of even your very closest friends into the back of a Civic.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Like Kids at the Pump

Proverbial kids in the candy store? It's not just for kids, not any more, since American adults have turned themselves into the same bratty, small-minded, short-sighted scourge as the adolescents they produce.

It is not that the children have become the adults so much as it is true that, in America, the adults have become children.

The current childishness about gas prices is a prime example.

Whiners, complainers, spoiled kids in a candy store. Want cheap gas? Sorry those prices and profits are so high, but hey, these are successful American corporations, doing what they do best. Want free gas? Oh, that sounds good. Come on, kids, how about a HUNDRED DOLLARS of GAS, FREE! We're your kindly, well-meaning, "in touch" federal government. We feel your pain.

So a hundred bucks is a hundred bucks. And the total amount of the giveaway sounds impressive: $86 million. But THAT, my sweet-tooth fiends, my gas-addicted friends, is a DROP in the world's biggest bucket. What is $86 million in the wake of the BILLIONS of dollars in profits being reaped every quarter by Exxon and their ilk?

The problem is, gasoline ought to cost more, not less, considerably more, through higher federal gas taxes (not oil company profits). But are there any elected officials out there saying that? That we need not to reduce the price but to shift the income from the corporate boards and shareholders to the coffers of environmental protection and clean up?

It is the defenders and protectors and restorers of our natural resources that ought to be getting rich off the price of gas. Because they are the ones who return the goods to us - and have any chance of making things good again - lessening pollution, slowing global climate change and degredation.

Instead, the oil companies, acting like victims themselves, make out like bandits. And what does the Congress ignominously offer us? A Snoopy bandaid.

It's not a generous payout. It's a payoff, a petty, pathetic payoff - and blood money at that.

Monday, April 24, 2006


I'd love to hear from you, especially if you know of some rabbit trail in this life along which things are, in the big scheme of things, getting better. I feel adebt at life's little and mid-sized joys.

'Stopping to smell the roses' and 'living for now' - the Zenishness of being aware and grateful - do not escape me - and do not mystify me. They remain priorities, never squashed by type A blindsidedness.

But when it comes to the big picture, real 'progress' seems elusive. It's almost as if the petty and selfish desires of most even go directly against the greater good.

So I ask, to have a peg to hang my hope hat upon, what is really, really getting better? How is civilization achieving greater grace than ever before?

Friday, April 07, 2006


Hmmm... why is it that what some of us knew about the wheelings and dealings (and movtives and coersions) of the Bush administration some years ago are JUST NOW really reaching even the beginning of critical mass in the MASS MEDIA?

Yes, that is the so-called liberal media. The big, corporate media that, in retrospect, seem to have bought the BushCo smoke screens for SO LONG, well into his SECOND (!!!) term.

The liberal media exists. It's not a complete fabrication. But who reads it? Rather obscure magazines like The American Prospect and The Progressive.

There does not seem to be any liberal media on TV. Maybe a few rational moderates amongst the wolves, but liberals? Nah.

And so the smokescreen, until now, when the cracks in the crack up are starting to make some real headlines - the kind of headlines in the kind of places that people who don't hardly ever pay much attention to the news might even pay a bit of attention to.

Let's get a fresh breeze coming through to blow that smoke away - and even if years late, maybe "before it's too late."

Whatever THAT is.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Couric, Vieira and Libby?

It seems who hosts the news, morning, noon and night, is about as important as the content and quality of said news.

The country is testing its feelings about Katie Couric moving to CBS in the evening and Meredith Vieira moving from ABC in the late morning to NBC in the early morning. Believe me, the stability and outlook of the nation don't depend on whose face appears on screen. They might be editors to some extent as well, but really, in the incapulated sound bite newscasting of today, they're just filler.

Meanwhile, the news is pretty darned interesting these days. Are we really experiencing a paradigm shift in the nation's mood, seeing the Republicans and even more conservative, faith-based nut cases as the true fringe element they really are? Not that Democrats and proud liberals are knocking the ball out of the park (except for give 'em hell Howard, still at it and good for him!). Nope, it's just that there are a bunch of crooks who need to be outted over on the right side of the aisle.

For the record, Scooter Libby is one person Couric and Vieira would give an internal organ to interview. Papers in his court case have come to light which insist that both President Bush and Vice President Cheney gave him explicit (though illicit) permission to break the law. And who was Libby to say no?

Back during Watergate, John Dean was the man of the hour, the man of the season. But at first, of course, he, too, was drawn into the sticky web of conspirators. Same with Libby, capable and loyal and a powerful "higher up" himself, with plenty of inside tracks. But maybe, like Dean, Libby will be the man of the hour, the man of this sticky summer season, when the nation closes the gap on its lag time in becoming aware of and coming to more honest, open terms with this bunch of crooks.

And so the faces will change, and history may even, in some ways, repeat itself. But the news ALWAYS matters more than a pretty face, though if anyone's got Katie's phone number, I'm game.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Without DeLay

Well, it's not like this is sudden or anything, even if the fall has been a bit precipitous. This guy lasted in Congress, handily re-elected ELEVEN (yes, ELEVEN) times. So what took so long for the hound dogs to catch up with the squirrel?

And now the question isn't, "Can he hang on to his majority leader seat?" And not even "Can this guy get re-elected again?" Those questions, better late than never, are now answered.

No, the new question is, "Can Tom DeLay become the most powerful lobbiest in Washington?" Or, "Can he make a million on the lecture circuit?" Or, "Will he team up with Karl Rove to bury a few good non-fundamentalists?"

Maybe the question now, for Mr. DeLay, is: "Will he start his own church?" And horrors, "Will those clear-headed Sugar Landers name an airport after him?"

Tom DeLay remains dangerous. He might just be smart enough to make himself a martyr. For heaven's sake, the exterminator wants nothing more than to sit on the far right hand of his very own god.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Ok, God

God? God? Can you hear me?

OK, proove you're not just a special interest constituent of the GOP.

Proove you've got enough guts to be for humanity en masse (not just those IN mass) and for - how about it - LIFE and HEALTHY LIVING on this PLANET, by god, and by God, that means YOU.

How about blessing the Democrats and the pacifists and the U.N. and the peace keepers and the peace makers and the honest to God Jesus types (NOT the Jesus Freaks) with enough guts and gumption to stand up to and overrule this right wing slaughter of our nation's virtues.

God, you know the dead. Surely you've got a direct line to the Founding Fathers. If they're rolling over in their graves right now, would you please send visual proof of that - via direct feed - to PBS, NPR and CNN, Harper's, The New Yorker, The Nation and The Progressive. Give those guys, who have a few shreads of journalistic integrity left, the edge on what genuinely might be called a Really BIG Scoop.

Then send CONCLUSIVE evidence over to FOX and Pat 'Assasinate Our Enemies' Robertson, so those guys can finally, for REAL, cower in the shadow of your omniscient power. Show 'em who's BOSS. Don't let 'em keep getting away with - guilty by association - your formerly good name, throwing dump truck loads of dirt on your grave, God.

Yes, those guys on the right, they'd just as soon you be dead. They wouldn't want the REAL you interferring with their broadcasts and their boatloads of contributions from lowly humans who seem to so easily confuse the Dogma of Dirt with The Real You.

Get after 'em. And the best way to do that is to come around again, no matter how you do it, and do it for the meek, who haven't been planning to inherit the Earth, by the way, and rightly so, because they'd be fools these days to think that any meek anything would inherit more than some meager CANNED GOODS and MAJOR, CRIPPLING DEBT from the mighty who still seem to be winning with their oh so covert and yet very catchy "Might Makes Right" propaganda.

OK, God, step up to the plate. Be gentle but firm. If you need some lessons for modern times, start with the Dalai Lama, but for Heaven's sake, don't stop there. Don't wait for reincarnations or for Hell to freeze over. The Earth, let's just say, is not getting any colder these days, so Hell seems to be having a field day. No, I think right about now would be good timing.

Show us what a magnanimous God is made of. And thanks!