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Blago appoints Bob Hartley to Senate – Chicago therapist called “button-down choice”

December 31, 2008 By: ERITAS News Service Category: Uncategorized 4 Comments →

Defiant in the face of the investigation of whether he attempted to sell his state’s vacant Senate seat, Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich yesterday appointed Chicago icon Dr. Bob Hartley to fill the vacancy left by President-elect Barack Obama.

The appointment is being called an attempt to moot the corruption charges brought by prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald. “Everyone loves Bob Hartley,” Blagojevich declared at a press conference to introduce Hartley to the national media.

“Look at him. He’s a modest man of unimpeachable character. Do ya hear me? Unimpeachable, he’s the button-down choice for the job,” Blagojevich said.

Hartley, a psychologist, is married to Emily Hartley, a public school teacher. The couple has resided in the Edgewater community for over 30 years. In remarks to reporters, Hartley’s trademark understated humor was on display.

“When we first spoke on the phone about the possibility of my being appointed, the governor made that joke about, ‘doctor it hurts when I do this.’ And I said, ‘unless your mother caused it, I can’t help you’,” said Hartley. When this elicited only mild chuckles from the journalists, Hartley said that a Mr. Carlin had assured him that the joke was “a laugh riot.”

Hartley said that he would fill the two years remaining on the Senate term by putting Congress on the couch, talking through issues, and getting to the roots of its problems. “If someone says liberals are the problem, I’d tell them ‘why don’t you go with that’. But I’d help them examine that phobia, and overcome that irrational fear,” Hartley said.

Today Fitzgerald’s office released a transcript of a wiretap of the initial phone call with the governor mentioned by Hartley. However, only Hartley’s side of the conversation was included.

Hartley: Hello? Yes, this is Dr. Hartley. Uh, yes, I’ll hold for Gov. Bla-. [5 minutes later] Hello, governor. I- I’m doing fine, and yourself? Uh-huh. I hadn’t heard that. No, actually I haven’t been reading the papers. Or TV, no. Really. Really? I see. That certainly does sound like a difficult situation. They offered what? Well, appreciation can be nice. I wouldn’t necessarily call it ungrateful. No, it’s not the same as a few million. Or HHS Secretary.

So what happens now? Fitzgerald, uh-huh. Grand jury, uh-huh. Yes, that does sound serious. At least you have Patti to stand by you. Oh, her too? Well, at least it’s bringing you closer together.

So how can I help you today? Uh huh. Uh huh. Uh huh. What? You want to appoint me? Beloved pop culture icon. Well, I do resemble that remark. Tell you what, uh, ‘governor,’ why don’t I transfer you to my assistant Carol, and she can schedule you for a session- I mean conference. Say this Thursday afternoon? Fine. Fine. Hold on and I’ll transfer you. What? Of course, totally confidential. Good- good bye, governor.

Fitzgerald also said that Hartley is not a focus of the overall investigation into Blagojevich.

The compleat hedonist or Xmas was a cracker

December 27, 2008 By: Cartledge Category: Uncategorized 5 Comments →

When it comes to Christmas downunder you can forget bout hazy religious notions, of old world traditions. This strange land is evolving its own excuse for a hedonistic holiday. Start with a champagne/BBQ breakfast – well two of us had champagne, the rest opting for various other early morning poisons.

It was a strange lineup as well; a Japanese chef, an Aussie brick layer, an middle eastern electrical engineer (forgoing booze because he was responsible for monitoring the power supply for the north of the state this auspicious day), a bevy of children and other assorted humans.

During the well lubricated discussion the Japanese chef expressed his delight and wonder at the way Australia accepts immigrants from all over. “Yeah,” the bricklayer said, “bloody immigration will kill this country!” Neither seemed to actually hear the other and the goodwill flowed on.

Lunch, down by the beach, was another hedonistic treat – table laden with a united nations of salads, fresh local sea food and a few cold slices of dead animal. This arrangement has evolved as the least intrusive on the free flow of conversation and booze – both during prep and consumption.

So back home, numb from feast and an unlikely cab-shiraz-merlot, the out of town calls began. Despite children ebbing and flowing throughout the day they were now to star. Given the legendary fecund nature of the family news of another grand-nephew was hardly surprising.

It was the second call from my Punjabi friends now living in Adelaide. “It’s a girl,” Singh shouted. “I want to call her Harry, but they insist on a traditional name. No worries,” he added. “We can call her Harry. Now I need another beer…” Like the unlikely cab-shiraz-merlot blend the unlikely cultural blend was wonderfully intoxicating and satisfying. Christmas is evolving.

Annual goodwill flight canceled – Santa “clinically depressed” by reader comments

December 22, 2008 By: ERITAS News Service Category: Uncategorized 5 Comments →

Nicholas Hussein Claus, abu Santa, is less than his jolly old self today, checking into an Icelandic clinic for what his publicist calls “dehydration and overwork.” However, well-placed sources tell Wiseline Institute NW that Claus is seeking treatment for clinical depression.

Angelina Claus — Santa’s wife of 370 years as well as CFO of Northex, the North Pole’s Oslo-based holding company — agreed to speak exclusively with Wiseline.

WINW: Thank you for speaking with us at this difficult time. Please tell our readers who ruined Christmas for everyone.

AC: Nick had been looking forward to his annual international mission, when he made the mistake of checking the Seattle Post-Intelligencer website for regional weather information. He then did what many P-I readers do: he started reading the comments that readers post in response to the news stories.

What he read appalled him, that’s putting it mildly.

I could hear him at the Mac in his study, clicking the mouse and muttering to himself. ‘Click – naughty. Click – naughty. Click – naughty.’ All night long.

WINW: But hasn’t Claus’s centuries of experience inured him to liars, cheaters, politicians and other disreputable types?

AC: For the most part Nick’s exposure to the goodness-challenged has been in the form of field action reports. Seeing it in their own words was overwhelming for him. The government haters, the racists, the sexists, the environmentalist-haters, the single-issue obsessives, the one-world conspiracy tin hatters, the concern trolls. The more he read, the more depressed he became.

I think the breaking point for him were all the anonymous paleoliths who delight in heaping abuse on whatever poor unfortunates happen to have been so unlucky as to be homeless, sick, or hit by a car.

The next morning he said he wasn’t going into the factory, and stayed home and watched the Game Show Network all day.

The following day he leased the reindeer to Lufthansa and sent the elves home with pay, telling them to spend some quality time with their families. I called our doctor.

On word of Claus’ medical status, Congress launched efforts today to save Christmas. The House Oversight of Holiday Observances Committee (HOHO Committee) met in emergency session, with members agreeing 7-6 to a proposal to include Northex in any auto industry assistance, since the North Pole produces Huffys, Big Wheels and Hot Wheels.

A complication is Republicans from southern states. Similar to their position regarding the auto industry, the bloc — led by Rep. Spencer Bachus of Alabama — is insisting that North Pole elves must agree to contract concessions to bring their pay in line with Chinese toy factory workers.

Wiseline Institute NW wishes everyone joyous holidays and a Happy New Year.

Driving the highway culture

December 21, 2008 By: Cartledge Category: Uncategorized 4 Comments →

Gettin high

Gettin high

Despite starting out my working life in the auto industry I’ve never been a motoring enthusiast. Probably why I can still be surprised by what others seem to understand as ordinary.

Like when I first visited North America and pulled up behind a Dodge Ram. “Is that a brand name or an instruction?” was my oh so whimsical observation. The others gave me that pitying look normally reserved for Australians.

I got that look again the other day, chatting with a pair of long haul truck drivers. The topic was the increase in truck related accidents, “because governments are now enforcing stiffer drug testing on drivers…” Or so they informed me.

“Wouldn’t go out on the highway unless I was sure the other truckies were on speed, far too dangerous…” So the conversation went. It seems a truck driver, not to mention highway patrol according to this pair, can’t operate to schedule without chemical assistance.

So I’m still working this new information through my head, but will happily dodge being rammed on any highways. I’m now wondering if rail operators or pilots require substances to get their job done.

Conservatives parties don’t deserve all the economic blame

October 11, 2008 By: Cartledge Category: Uncategorized 9 Comments →

Funny headlines aside there are some strange comprehensions out there. The above came from a regional Canadian paper HERE.

For the past decade or so they have all been bloody conservative – at least economically.

What we are seeing now is the reactionary backlash of economic and social policy illiterates, and the breed has leaked beyond US borders.

These people who know how to reload an ‘over and under’, bomb an abortion clinic and bash a gay wouldn’t know hay from a horses foot when it comes to economics.

I’m starting to think there might be a god after all, and she is going to have one hell of a time putting it to the social conservatives who have been so dominant.

In fact, if you are of a progressive frame of mind it might be time to take to your well stocked cave while this next phase plays out.

There might be a certain joy in natural justice, but someone will have to pay and it’s usually the weakest. Watching conservatives eat their babies is never a pleasant experience.

Microsoft releases Palin patch – Fixes data retrieval errors

October 06, 2008 By: ERITAS News Service Category: Uncategorized 5 Comments →

Microsoft released a fix for the Palin 1.0 application today, responding to performance problems with Gov. Sarah Palin during last Thursday’s vice presidential debate at Washington University in St. Louis.

“We finally got the stalling problem worked out on Thursday morning, and things seemed fine during the debate’s first 5 minutes or so,” said Del MacGateway, IT director for the McCain-Palin campaign.

“Then all of a sudden she started giving the wrong answers to the questions, and then ignored the format all together. ‘There you go again’ and ‘Say it ain’t so Joe’ came out at the same time,” said MacGateway.

“She gave an inappropriate response when Biden spoke about raising his sons alone. Obviously Palin’s file system was corrupted,” he said.

He went on to say the problem also spread to the audio system, “with the result Palin sounded more and more Fargo than usual as the debate went on,” a reference to the Cohen brothers’ motion picture.

MacGateway said he filed Palin’s popup online bug report with Microsoft immediately after the debate.

In a press conference this morning, Microsoft spokesman Rita Doss confirmed the problem was the file system. “The queries were correctly formed, but for some reason Palin 1.0 was retrieving the wrong answer files — and usually sound bites about energy policy,” said Doss.

“Our support team worked through the weekend, and are confident this new patch solves the problem,” she said.

However, the fix will not affect Palin’s accent. “That’s not a bug, it’s a feature called Fauxksy, expensively voiced by Frances McDormand,” Ms. Doss said.

Doss also announced Microsoft has no plans to issue a version 2.0 of Palin, due to its steadily declining popularity. The company will provide limited support to the core user base until November.

Corporate tantrums

October 04, 2008 By: Cartledge Category: Uncategorized 5 Comments →

Big boys cry?

Big boys cry?

For Aussie media it’s a done deal – Wells trumps Citi in bid for Wachovia – though reports are more circumspect elsewhere; from deal in the balance to Wells makes strong bid.

I’m left with the image of kiddy tantrums for Citi execs. “But you said we could have Wachovia! You promised!…” The ‘promised’ deal being a government subsidized buck-something a share. (Corporate welfare)

Meanwhile Wells see some real benefit (delusional optimism?) and are willing to pay shareholders eight bucks-something. There shouldn’t be any argument, lots of those small shareholders date back to the small local banks swallowed during the greed boom; shareholders who rely on the holding for part of their incomes.

Even if the Wells move is delusional optimism it makes far more sense than government pouring more money into corporate profits. Mind you, as one of the banks behind 1929 efforts to buy the market out of trouble Citi might be finally looking to their payback. That effort was the ultimate in delusional optimism.

iNews Friday, 10-3-2008

October 03, 2008 By: ERITAS News Service Category: Uncategorized No Comments →

From the iNews 9000 Turbo wi-fi headline translator–

Headline: President Bush Meets with Bicameral and Bipartisan Members of Congress to Discuss Economy
Translation: “Who wants pie with their coffee?” “I’ll have a piece, Mr. President.” “That’ll be 50 million dollars, McCain.” “Take it out of my earmarks.” “OK. Now then. First agenda item — what’s the deal with the camels?” “The what?” “Camels, Pelosi. You know, the bi-camels.”

Headline: China beams with pride, joy after successful space mission
Translation: Zhai Zhigang and crew, moments after completing first orbital lawnchair mission

Somali pirates on arms ship celebrate Muslim feast
Translation: Somali Pirates celebrate NL East Pennant

Facebook hires ex-AG’s former top aide
Translation: Big Brother now on everyone’s friend list

Unicyclist robot ‘Murata Seiko-chan’
Translation: National Review’s Kathleen Parker suggests replacement for Palin

Senate passes bailout 74-25
Translation: “No bailout! No bailout! No ba- Hey, where’s my wallet?”

Manatee sees record voter registration
Translation: GOP plans to challenge endangered marine mammals who try to vote — Greenpeace wants caging inquiry

Former GOP Congressman Wants Gwen Ifill Booted From VP Debate
Translation: “Not pale enough to be objective,” says former Rep. Hostettler

“I have always had 100 percent absolute truth,” a visibly angry McCain told the Des Moines Register editorial board on Tuesday when asked about deceptive elements of his campaign. “An assertion that I have done otherwise I take strong exception to.”
Translation: “Palin lies enough for the both of us.”
Headline: 51 percent say Democratic Sen. Joe Biden wins vice presidential debate

Translation: 51 percent of McCain spokesmen say Biden was sexist just for showing up

Translation (Turbo mode): “I have never seen this doobie before in my life.”

Translation (Turbo Overdrive mode): 51 percent say Republican Palin wins after 3AM Ohio re-poll flips results

iNews Friday, Lipstick on a Pygmalion Edition – 9/19/2008

September 19, 2008 By: ERITAS News Service Category: Uncategorized 3 Comments →

From the iNews 9000 Turbo wi-fi headline translator–

Headline: Sarah Palin Denies Global Warming, Says Polar Bears Not Endangered
TranslationPastor Haggee – “Bye George, I think she’s got it!”

Headline: Karl Rove says McCain, Obama have gone too far
Translation“Whose pudgy fingerprints are those on the US political system?” asks a shocked, shocked Rove

Headline: Mariners’ Beltre to have season-ending surgery
TranslationPsst – the Mariners season was over May 1

Headline: What Do You Want to Ask Sarah Palin?
Translation“Boxers or briefs?”

Headline: Fiorina – Palin Lacks Experience to Run a Company
TranslationGrover Norquist – “I love it when a plan comes together”

Headline: Barbra Streisand Sings Support for Obama
TranslationPalin doesn’t want witnesses singing to Troopergate inquiry

Headline: “John McCain embraces and expels Washington like an accordion player belting out a song.”
TranslationPalin’s got a squeezebox

Headline: Ryan O’Neal and son arrested for possession of drugs
TranslationNo family members remain free to post bail

Headline: Mariners’ Bedard could miss most of 2009
TranslationBedard and Beltre can carpool to physical therapy

Headline: McCain Flip-Flops On ‘Excessive Regulation’ In Less Than An Hour
Translation“I did promise CHANGE, my friends”

Headline: John McCain Gets Confused About Spain, but His Advisers Get Dumb
TranslationMcCain and Spain – the wheels come off campaign (I think he’s got it!)

Headline: Todd Palin – Sarah Was “Destined For Higher Positions”
“Where are my slippers?”

Not a conservative, just a redneck pronoun

September 04, 2008 By: Cartledge Category: Uncategorized No Comments →

Viewing the Pres campaign through an Aussie filter is not as good as being there, but interesting. Immediately following her convention speech Aussie conservative commentators were all aglee with the spectre of the ‘pitbull with lipstick’ putting it up the progressives.

By the next day, the hangover abated, realization was setting in that this was not bona fide conservative. She is an attack dog to be sure, but politically vapid. Not only that, like her boss she spends too much time talking about Obama, giving him free media kicks.

Obama’s response is more in line with downunder politicking, don’t give your opponents airtime.

“I’ve been called worse on the basketball court, so it’s not that big of a deal.”

“You haven’t heard a word about how they’re going to deal with any aspect of the economy that is affecting you day to day”

Well, I guess Obama figures you know who he’s talking about, but treating them as mere pronouns seems to have a flow-on effect. Well it did among my South Seas conservative set. Maybe Aussies are just far more attuned to irony, something many Americans mistake for sarcasm.

Though if sarcasm was ever deserved McDropsy and his moose huntin’ pal would be prime candidates.

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