Sunday, June 25, 2017

Almost Heaven



Adult Halloween costumes fall into three categories: scary, sexy and funny. For some stupid reason, my company has costume contests every Halloween. The powers that be love wasting time with stupid bullshit like that, but taking time off for severe medical needs is frowned upon. Anyway, a few years back, this jackass came to work dressed as a coal miner. Coal miner doesn't fall under scary or sexy, so we can deduce this asshat thought it was a funny costume. And he did. I found it off putting.

When people learn I from West Virginia, nine times out of ten I am mockingly asked the following questions:

1.) Is your mom also your sister?
2.) Was your dad a coal miner?

My answer to the first question is usually, “Wow. You're so clever. I've never heard an incest joke about West Virginia before. I can see why you're in middle management. That's the kind of wit that can only be developed by laughing at the lame jokes of your immediate superiors in a desperate and feeble attempt to climb the corporate ladder.”

My answer to the second question is, “Yes.” This causes the jackass who asked the question to be all dumbfounded and start stammering. I get a smug satisfaction from their awkwardness. It's similar to the smug satisfaction I felt when the Halloween jerk was fired.

John Oliver recently did a piece on coal miners and how Trump fucked with the hopes and fears of those who are dependent upon the coal industry. If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it. It's fucking awesome. And it reminded me it's been too long since I told anyone to eat shit. Way too long.

The one time out of ten I'm not mockingly asked the questions above, I'm told the following: “You're from West Virginia? I drove through there once on my way to somewhere else.” Please stop saying this to me. I don't care and I literally have no response to that. So you hit the West Virginia Turnpike en route to your vacation destination. I don't know what you want me to do with this information.

 
Since the election, much ado has been made about the disconnect between the liberal elite and rural America. I believe I'm in a unique position to address this as I'm a native of Bumblefuck, WV and I consider myself a part of the liberal elite.

Throughout this blog, I will most likely make fun of West Virginia. I'm allowed to do so as I am from there. You are not allowed to do so because you will come across as an obnoxious, stuck up asshole. You're not better than me just because your home town has a hospital and level sidewalks.

Before you read any further, I need you to understand Virginia and West Virginia are two separate states. Get this into your head right now and don't you ever fucking forget it. And where the fuck do you get the nerve to laugh at me when I correct you? You're the dumbass who can't name all fifty states, a skill you should have mastered by the third grade. You understand there is a North and South Dakota. You understand there is a North and South Carolina. Why the fuck do you insist there is no West Virginia? You know what? Fuck it. From now on, I'm referring to Virginia as East Virginia.

You may be wondering how I came to be liberal when I'm from a red state. That's because it wasn't always a red state. From 1976 to 1996 West Virginia only went red once and that was in Reagan's second term. (I've always believed Reagan's huge electoral win in 1984 was due to the assassination attempt in his first term. I have no facts to support this. I just think it must be really hard not to vote for the guy who got shot.) In fact, West Virginia was one of only six states that went to Jimmy Carter in 1980. (Now that I think about it, winning 44 states in 1980 was also a huge electoral victory. I may have to reassess my assassination theory.)


From an early age I knew two things, I leaned democrat and I wanted to get the fuck out of West Virginia. In 1998 I got the fuck out of West Virginia. This brings us to the 2000 election of Gore v. Bush. Though I had been gone for two years, I fully expected my home state to go for Gore. I clearly remember watching the election night coverage as it was the moment my ongoing feud with Joe Scarborough began. A feud he knows nothing about because he has no idea I exist. They played an Al Gore clip where he said something intelligent.  What Joe Scarborough said after that is seared in my memory forever. “That don't play in West Virginia.” I looked straight into the TV screen and said, “Eat shit, Joe.”
 
Joe decided we were a bunch of idiot hicks who would obviously choose the dumbass buffoonery of George W. Bush over the brains of Al Gore. He was pompous and arrogant and I was certain I knew the people of my home state better than some cable news anchor/wannabe rock star. And later that evening when West Virginia was called for George Bush, I lost my shit. I shouted to the TV, “What the fuck, West Virginia? I spent all night defending you to Joe Scarborough and you go and fuck me over like this.” 

 
Looking back, I now realize this is when the whole liberal elite bullshit started. George Bush campaigned saying things like, "I know the human being and fish can coexist peacefully." Republicans had to find a way to make this jackass appealing to voters. In true evil genius fashion they devised a plan to make voters believe Al Gore was condescending to them. They said things like, “You notice how Al Gore calls a creek a creek instead of a crick? He's talking down to you. George Bush would like to have a beer with you.” And people were all like “Yeah, I'd rather have a beer with George Bush than pronounce words properly with Al Gore.” 


For the record, I don't think anyone would enjoy having a beer with George Bush. He strikes me as the kind of guy who gets way too drunk, way too fast. Then you have to call his wife to pick him up. They leave. A half hour goes by and the waiter comes over and asks you if the drunk guy left. You say yeah and the waiter tells you he didn't pay his tab. So, you're like, whatever, I'll pay it. You get the bill and it's three hundred dollars when he was literally only there for an hour and a half. Because the jackass was drinking some fancy imported beer like it was water.  Apparently, he's too good for Pabst Blue Ribbon, which still exists and is only seventy-five cents a bottle. And you know this because you're from West Virginia and you know a lot of broke alcoholics. Only we don't call them alcoholics. They're people who “like to drink.” And now you have to put George Bush's expensive beer on a credit card you just paid off.

To this very day, the people who didn't fall for the George W. Bush Beer Initiative are called the liberal elite. This is why I consider myself a part of the liberal elite. Not because I'm elite, but because I'm not insecure. This is really a self esteem issue. If you threw yourself in the basket with the other deplorables, you're either a Klan member or you suffer from low self confidence.

When it comes to the self esteem of West Virginia, you people who only recognize East Virginia aren't helping. Our current state motto is, “West Virginia – Slightly Better Than Kentucky.”

Low self esteem causes people to see enemies who don't exist. I went home for a visit in 2012 and saw signs about “Obama's War on Coal” everywhere. I had no idea such a war had been waged. Because it wasn't real. As my hair dresser recently said to me, “Paranoia will destroy ya.” (She then asked me what that was from and I said I didn't know. A Google search revealed it's a song by The Kinks.) Obama had this crazy idea about saving the planet and reducing carbon emissions. It's wasn't a war. He just didn't want the entire human race to die.


Low self esteem also causes people to hold conflicting beliefs. I don't personally know anyone who denies global warming is real. This is counting friends who vote republican. When I was in middle school we started an environmental club. We even planted trees at the school and shit. My family and the families of several of my classmates were dependent upon coal. But no one denied the hole in the ozone layer was real. Our school actually taught us science and didn't tell us stupid shit like, Jesus wants it to be warm on Christmas this year. (Three years later, that school closed and now it's some public health place that gives free birth control to teenage girls. It would be nice if one of you little whores could take two minutes to water my fucking trees.)


Mountaintop excavating takes jobs away from coal miners. The people in West Virginia fucking hate what it's doing to their environment. It makes the mountains ugly. It won't be long before people who drive through West Virginia on their vacation will stop telling me it's beautiful. Obama is no longer president, and I haven't checked his record on this, but I'm almost certain he was against blowing up mountains.




I must call bullshit on the miners I see on TV who claim to love mining. I know you fucking don't. You love not being poor. There's nothing wrong with that. If there was a better job with the same pay, you'd be out of the mine as fast as you can say, “Fuck this shit.” Which is exactly what you'd be saying.
 
This is what I know about coal mining and why I know you're full of shit:

1.) Coal mining makes one extremely irritable and completely oblivious to the discomfort of those around him. For instance, the miner may think it's perfectly acceptable to tell a disgusting story about taking a shit in a coal mine at the dinner table. And if anyone says they don't want to hear this story while they're eating, he'll get all crabby and say he's paying for this food and he'll talk about whatever he wants.

2.) Taking a shit in a coal mine is an unpleasant misadventure.

3.) It's causes all kinds of health problems. Aside from the obvious black lung, it causes back problems. This is very inconvenient when your daughter needs you to move furniture. It also causes hearing loss and you will probably refuse to get hearing aids. And you keeping turning the volume up on the TV and no one ever needs to hear Andy Griffith that loud. There's something really creepy about it.

4.) Coal dust can sometimes make it look as if a grown man is wearing eye liner.

5.) The danger. It's on the list of the 20 Deadliest Jobs in America. It ranks way higher on the list than police or fire fighters. It's literally safer to run into a burning building than to go down in a coal mine.


Reporters, please stop referring to coal mining as the only high paying jobs available for non-college educated people in West Virginia. You know what high paying jobs are available for college educated people in West Virginia? I don't either. I already told you my home town doesn't even have a hospital. The town next to us does, but if you go there for anything more serious than a broken arm, they're going to throw your ass on a helicopter to Pittsburgh. I don't know if helicopter pilot is a high paying job, but it doesn't require a college degree either.


Not much new industry ever comes to West Virginia. The land is extremely “bumpy.” Corporations find building on mountains to be a huge pain in the ass. And apparently, if you aren't from there, the Falling Rock signs can be unnerving. For people who haven't driven through on their vacation, yes, there are a lot of mountains in West Virginia. It's The Mountain State. It's surprises me how often I have to explain this to people from neighboring states.

This is why West Virginia is desperately clinging to coal mining, even though it's been on the decline for forty years due to technology and mountaintop excavation. And people make bad decisions when they're desperate. Decisions like voting for Donald Trump, a man who calls himself “the blue collar billionaire.” Coal miners should be giving him shit for that, not proclaiming him their savior.

In 1990, Donald Trump gave an interview to Playboy where he told a fascinating story about coal miners:

What satisfaction, exactly, do you get out of doing a deal?
I love the creative process. I do what I do out of pure enjoyment. Hopefully, nobody does it better. There’s a beauty to making a great deal. It’s my canvas. And I like painting it.

I like the challenge and tell the story of the coal miner’s son. The coal miner gets black-lung disease, his son gets it, then his son. If I had been the son of a coal miner, I would have left the damn mines. But most people don’t have the imagination — or whatever — to leave their mine. They don’t have “it.”


Eat shit, Donnie.

Namaste, Bitches

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Public Enemy



According to Wikipedia, the term Public Enemy was first widely used in the United States in the 1930s to describe individuals whose activities were seen as criminal and extremely damaging to society. In the 1980s, Public Enemy was widely known as a rap group whose members included Chuck D and Flavor Flav. In the beginning of this century, Flavor Flav was widely known as a reality star due to his idiotic antics on several VH1 shows. Flav was also widely known to use words that don't exist, such as, dramatical.

President Trump is also a man who is extremely damaging to society, an idiotic reality star and a maker-upper of words. Trump learned some new words this week, such as, abuse of power and obstruction of justice. He further learned all the covfefe in the world won't make James Comey go away.

If you're like me, you have a stupid job that requires you to show up on weekdays, which made it difficult to hear the Comey testimony on Thursday. Perhaps, a co-worker disturbed you to ask about some stupid report even though he could clearly see I was wearing my earbuds, Rob. Stupid jobs and co-workers named Rob are the reason C-Span2 exists. They replayed the full testimony later that night and were kind enough to inform me of the running time, allowing me to plan my evening accordingly. They also played the entire testimony without any distractions like stupid breaking news banners.

BREAKING NEWS: THE PRESIDENT HASN'T TWEETED IN AN HOUR

If you have a stupid job and failed to plan your evening around C-Span2's programming schedule, I'm about to break down Comey's testimony for you. You're welcome.

Comey's Written Statement
Comey provided a written statement to the Senate Intelligence Committee the day before he testified. The following is a condensed, paraphrased version of that statement:

I began documenting all interactions with President Trump after our first meeting. Because Donald Trump is a man who once stood in the pouring rain and claimed it wasn't raining, it occurred to me he may be inclined to lie about other things. I did tell Donnie he wasn't personally under investigation at this time. Looking back, that was a mistake as I was talking to a man who interprets the weather to his liking. He interpreted “not personally under investigation at this time” to mean I was promising to never investigate him and was closing the Russia investigation.

On January 27, Trump tried to seduce me with a romantic dinner. After plying me with wine, he demanded I beg for my job and pledge my undying loyalty to The Trump Organization and all it's subsidiaries. We reached a compromise where I promised honest loyalty. Looking back that was a mistake as I had no idea what the fuck I was promising.

On February 14, Trump threw his entire posse out of the Oval Office so he could speak to me privately about Mike Flynn. Trump said, “He is a good guy and has been through a lot. I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.” I agreed Flynn was a good guy. Looking back, that was a mistake as I was talking to a man who interprets the weather to his liking. He interpreted, “he's a good guy” to mean I was closing the investigation.

After this meeting, I asked Jeff Sessions to never leave me alone with the president again. I told him it was getting too creepy for me and I'm the FBI Director. I've seen some shit. Looking back, that was a mistake because Jeff is a shady motherfucker.

On March 30, the president called me complaining about the Russia investigation. He stated Russian hookers were creating a cloud over his administration. He wanted to know what I could do to “lift the cloud.” I advised the president to just pay the hookers what he owes them, then they'll probably go away on their own. He further asked me to publicly state he's not personally under FBI investigation. I said, “I don't know, man. We'll see.” Looking back, that was a mistake as the president clearly didn't recognize I was blowing him off.

On April 11, President Trump called me to ask what I had done about his requests of March 30. I told him to call the Acting Deputy Attorney General and to please leave me alone. He stated he would do that and added, “Because I have been very loyal to you, very loyal; we had that thing you know.”

I have no fucking clue what he meant by “that thing.” My only guess is perhaps he had confused me with Jeff Sessions.

 

Open Session
Almost all the information shared in the open session had already been made public in Comey's written statement. I'm assuming all the really juicy shit was revealed in the closed session. Or the closed session was just an excuse for the senate to have a half day. And the ate pizza and watched a Hallmark movie. We'll only know for sure if members of the Senate Intelligence Committee start quoting lines from Just Desserts: A Murder She Baked Mystery.

Comey opened by speaking about the fucked up way he was fired. He chose not to speak to the press even though Trump was straight up lying about what went down. Then Trump sent out the tweet threatening Comey with “tapes.” Comey was all like, “Bring it on, motherfucker.” He leaked his memos knowing it would trigger the appointment of a Special Counsel. That's the shit, Jim Comey. That's the shit.

Next, the senators questioned Comey. The senators come with their questions prepared and apparently don't care if they're wasting my time. Therefore, many of the questions and answers were repeated. For example, at least three senators asked Comey why he believed he was fired. Comey totally covered that in his opening statement. Why am I sitting here at eleven o'clock on a Thursday night listening to the same story four times when I want to watch House of Cards?

Another example is the question as to why Comey spoke to Trump alone in the Oval Office. Dianne Feinstein said to Comey, “You're big. You're strong. Why didn't you stop and say, Mr. President, this is wrong. I cannot discuss this with you.” (I thought it was weird that she prefaced the question with the whole big and strong thing. I don't think this is a situation where size matters.) Comey answered he basically lost his shit and momentarily didn't know what to say.  Rather unimpressive coming from a former FBI Director, but honest, nonetheless.

Marco Rubio was up next and asked, “Did you say something to the president about, that is not an appropriate request, or did you tell the white house counsel, it's not an appropriate request? Someone needs to tell the president he can't do these things.” Comey was all like, “My, Grandma, what big ears you have.  You'd think you would have heard me answer this question three minutes ago with ears like that.” (And I know there have been all kinds of jokes and whatnot about the size of Rubio's ears on the Internets, but I never realized how large they are until this very moment. It's super distracting. They don't look human. He looks like he's about to morph into some Lord Of The Rings type character. I've never seen Lord Of The Rings, but I feel like I know there are some fucked up ears in that movie for some reason.)


Another time waster was the way republican senators tried to defend Trump, but not really. For example, when I wasn't totally hypnotized by Marco Rubio's ears, I heard him ask, “Do you ever wonder why, of all the things in the investigation, the only thing never leaked is the fact the president was never personally under investigation, despite the fact that Democrats and Republicans and the leadership of congress have known that for weeks?”  Comey's response was basically, “Dude, if you wanted that leaked you would have leaked it. Don't front.”

James Risch attempted to make the case that Trump wasn't directing Comey to drop the Flynn investigation. According to Risch's hypothesis, when Trump cleared the room and said, “I hope you can see your way to clear to letting this go,” he was merely sharing his hopes and dreams with his dear friend, Jim Comey.  Risch asked, “Do you know of any case where a person has been charged for obstruction of justice where they said or thought they hoped for an outcome?”

Comey explained the president tends to use the word hope in a threatening manner. Like when he tweeted:
 
  
John McCain spoke last and inadvertently made the case for his own retirement. McCain has been outspoken against Trump and has compared the Trump/Russia scandal to Watergate. Therefore, I allowed myself to have higher expectations than I should for the man responsible for making Sarah Palin a thing. 

McCain rambled incoherently about Hillary's emails having some connection with the Russia investigation. I think. Or he doesn't understand why the Hillary email investigation is over and the Trump/Russia investigation is ongoing because he doesn't understand they are two separate things. And something about if the Russians hacked the election and Hillary was a candidate, she obviously conspired with the Russians toward her own loss.

My grandma spent two years leaving messages for my sister on a stranger's voice mail. She had written the number down wrong. For reasons known only to her, she refused to accept she was calling the wrong number. Instead, when she heard a man's voice on the outgoing message, she concluded my sister was living with some guy and keeping it from her. This made no sense as my sister had previously lived with a boyfriend and it was not a big secret kept from grandma. Also, if it was a secret, it would have been kind of stupid to give grandma the number and let the imaginary boyfriend leave the outgoing message. Regardless, I spent two years under constant interrogation regarding my sister's live-in lover who didn't exist.

John McCain's questioning of Comey was like that.

  
Rebuttal
Following Comey's testimony, Paul Ryan gave a press conference against the advice of everyone on Earth. Ryan defended Trump's behavior claiming the president is new to politics and doesn't understand the protocol. Uh...no. I'm sorry, Paul Ryan, but I'm afraid the position of President of the United States doesn't allow for a training period. Once a person has been elected to this highest office there are only two options: Sink or Swim, Motherfucker.

Donald Trump Jr. live tweeted Comey's testimony using the hashtag, nothingburger. This is not a phrase I'm familiar with because I completed the eighth grade over twenty-five years ago. So I looked up other tweets under #nothingburger. My favorite was from @ArdentAmerican who tweeted:

“Stop saying nothingburger. Stop saying nothingburger. STOP SAYING NOTHINGBURGER!!! #NothingBurger

Thank you, @ArdentAmerican.

During the session Comey was asked why people should believe him over Trump. Comey responded, “I think people should look at the whole body of my testimony. As I used to say to juries, when I talked about a witness, you can't cherry pick it. You can't say, I like these things he said but on this, he's a rotten liar.”

Trump immediately proved this point by cherry picking Comey's testimony. “But we were very, very happy, and, frankly, James Comey confirmed a lot of what I said, and some of the things that he said just weren’t true.”

Namaste, Bitches

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