Up to a Point

01.10.14

P.J. O’Rourke on Pot, Putin, and Polygamy

The first full week of 2014 started on a high note, with Colorado and Washington freeing up the weed, Putin wielding a glue gun, and Utah saying no to one groom and yes to many wives.

How much damn pull does a guy have to have to get government bureaucracy off its ass and doing something right for a change? Christmas present from the Obama family to the children’s godmother was delivered to wrong address in Chicago by the U. S. Postal Service.

Otherwise the year began on a high note—in Colorado and Washington state.

The Washington Post hails pot legalization as “…the professionalization of a multimillion-dollar industry that just 20 years ago was fully underground.” Hock the Glock/List the stock.

And New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signs an executive order allowing use of the drug by those with serious illnesses.

Bumper sticker suggestion: MEDICAL MARIJUANA MAKES ME SICK

In Story Completely Unrelated to Washington State’s Legalization of Marijuana

New member of Seattle City Council, Kshama Sawant, is a socialist. Says Sawant, “If you ask me as a socialist what workers deserve, they deserve the value of what they produce.” Value of Boeing’s new 777X is $350 million per aircraft.

Will Boeing reconsider decision against moving production of 777X away from Seattle? Long meeting in boardroom. Bong kept going out. Maybe build plane on the campus of UC Berkeley?

In Another Story Completely Unrelated to Marijuana…

Which, like, you know, man, really slows down your sense of time…  President Obama reunited with his old Punahou School “Choom Gang” in Hawaii and played more than 30 hours of golf.

Am I hallucinating or did Toronto Mayor Rob Ford file to run for reelection?

Wish we had public servants like this in U.S. Guy’s got the answer for every pressing political question:

Hillary Clinton on Benghazi: “I was drunk and smoking crack.

Kathleen Sebelius on Obamacare website: “I was drunk and smoking crack.”

John Boehner and Harry Reid on government shutdown: “We were drunk and smoking crack.”

Studies Show…

Increased head-butting in Congress. Increased evidence of Alzheimer’s caused by repeated concussions. There’s a joke in there someplace but have been KO’d by politics too often to remember where it is. Also spent a lot of time heavily researching president’s Oahu holiday vacation.    

Spoiler alert: New season of Downton Abbey is set in 1924. That was 90 years ago. They’re all going to die.

Studies Show…

Media items beginning “Studies show…” are bullshit.  I’m talking to you, David Brooks.

Being hard on old pal David. His Jan. 3 NYT op-ed about marijuana legalization used phrases “academic studies more or less confirm,” “One RAND study suggests,” and “is confirmed by research.” Brooks argues “usage is bound to increase. This is simple economics.”

Point proven by editorial note at end of column: “Paul Krugman is off today.”

Studies show poor people with health insurance go to primary-care doctors less than the uninsured and visit emergency rooms more, according to journal Science.  After smashing fist into computer screen during Obamacare website enrollment, according to me.

Studies show 5 percent of Americans believe U.S. government “works well and needs no changes,” according to AP and National Opinion Research Center.

Studies show 6.9 percent of Americans use marijuana, according to U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. What are the 1.9 percent smoking?

Reuters hedline: “Deadly swine virus sweeps U.S.”  Disease is called porcine epidemic diarrhea. Got the munchies for a ham sandwich? Me neither.

AgriNews Indiana hed: “Pork prices set to surge.”  Maybe Nobel Prize-winning Princeton economics Professor Paul Krugman can explain this, in a high squeaky voice while holding his breath.

And while you’re at it, Paul, even us capitalist-pig Republicans would like an explanation of JPMorgan Chase. Bank agrees to penalties now totaling $20 billion. Bank’s stock up 28 percent over last 12 months. What are the 1 percent smoking?

Clean and Sober National News…

Texas abortion law upheld by federal court.  Abortions can be performed only by doctors with admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. Overall social impact of legislation not yet clear. Grownups can still be killed by anybody in Texas, miles and miles from a hospital.

California Supreme Court grants law license to man who has been living in United States illegally. Can now file suit in state court to deport himself.

Train carrying oil collided with train hauling grain near Casselton, N.D., causing a 100-foot fireball.  House Republicans propose using tons of highly nutritional toasted wheat to replace food-stamp program in new Farm Bill.

Record cold wave in much of the nation added misery to commercial airline travel. Something heretofore thought impossible.

NYC homicide rate at all-time low: 333 murders in 2013. New NYC Police Commissioner William J. Bratton held same job in 1996 when NYC had 1,353 murders. Are New Yorkers so competitive they can’t let nation’s Murder Capital title go to Detroit or Chicago? 

Mayor de Blasio vows to continue struggle to reverse legacy of Bloomberg-Giuliani era.

Anniversary of LBJ’s Jan. 8, 1964, State of the Union Speech…

War on Poverty began 50 years ago. I surrender.

Spoiler alert…

New season of Downton Abbey is set in 1924. That was 90 years ago. They’re all going to die.

SNL adds black female cast member. Considered adding black female Hispanic gay homeless disabled veteran special-needs cast member with gluten intolerance, but that wouldn’t be funny. 

Foreigners Around the World…

Setting example for U.S. political leadership, German Chancellor Angela Merkel busts her ass.

Macy’s settles a lawsuit with Martha Stewart in a deal, rumor has it, brokered by Vladimir Putin. He finds Martha Stewart’s cooking and décor tips help relieve tension of his struggle with sexual identity.  Whole Kremlin is filled with Martha craft projects.  Really brightens up the place. Putin was sole KGB agent armed only with a glue gun.

Madagascar’ first presidential election since 2009 coup won by Hery Rajaonarimampianina. He was not a write-in candidate.

Turns out North Korean leader Kim Jong Un did not have uncle Jang Song Thaek eaten by a pack of dogs.  What a relief. For the dogs.

Secretary of State John Kerry, on New Year’s peace-making trip to Jerusalem and West Bank, says, “This is not mission impossible.” True. Things always work out in the end for Tom Cruise.

Cruise would be an interesting pick for secretary of State. Instead of the CIA, he has backup from the Church of Scientology—a secret organization that actually can keep a secret and really does scare the shit out of everybody.

Getting a Little Paranoid Myself…

Record number of journalists killed worldwide in 2013. Beginning to wonder about “speaking truth to power” thing. Vladimir Putin is a he-man lady-killer.

This Just in From Colorado Think Tank… 

Cool new peace plan for Syria. Turn country into 22.4 million micro-nations, allowing every person to have his or her own special Arab Spring. 

In Story Completely Unrelated to Vladimir Putin…

Utah’s attorney general gets stay from Supreme Court on a federal district court’s ruling that Utah gay marriage ban is unconstitutional. Utah invented unconventional marriages. AG won’t budge on issue until a man is allowed to marry at least three or four other men.