As I was embarking on a trip through the local IKEA store yesterday, I happened upon a scene that made the very red of my oh-so-American blood boil…
As we also all know from my comments on how the War on Terror has made us all incredibly stupid, IKEA was recently the setting for an alleged-attempted terror attack by drunken joggers.
Now my crack investigation skills have revealed the following chillinginformation:
- Sweden is a kingdom, so they must be hostile to democracy, right?
- Sweden once ruled a large empire, considered a world power.
- This mighty empire sought and obtained overseas colonies.
- IKEA products are often strange and off-putting.
I can only conclude the following: Sweden is conducting a covert campaign to conquer and colonize America. We must fight IKEA at every turn–could it be possible that, if you assemble the parts correctly, a trained Swedish operative disguised as a helpful IKEA employee could construct, say, a tank?
Truthdig has a great piece on the modern-day equivalent of blacklisting, now known in some circles as “Dixie-Chicking“:
[A]ll hell broke loose after Maines’ on-stage comment made the media rounds. The Chicks lost most of their airtime on right-leaning country western radio; CD and concert ticket sales plummeted. Egged on by reactionary FreeRepublic.com bloggers and DJs, ex-fans destroyed Chicks CDs en masse during the ensuing “Dixie Chicks Destruction” campaign. Concerts were picketed by red-baiters who called the Chicks “traitors” and “communists,” although the group’s fans were divided, and some remained loyal. Worst of all, bomb-sniffing dogs and metal detectors were deployed at Dixie Chicks concerts. Under heavy security, the Texas trio confronted a 2003 death threat at a Dallas performance, after a letter threatened to shoot Maines in the same city where JFK had been gunned down 40 years earlier. For his part, President Bush appeared to egg on the Chicks’ persecutors, saying: “They shouldn’t have their feelings hurt just because some people don’t want to buy their records.”
Apparently Maines didn’t learn much after the September 11 attacks. The American people have become much more patriotic, and while there are many opinions about the war in Iraq, there are also many casualties for those that speak out on subjects that are considered by many as un-American.
Seeing as how America was founded through the ultimate act of protest (not that I’m advocating armed rebellion per se), it can hardly hurt to have a trio of singers state an opinion (one that has been rather, uh, vindicated by the ensuing 4 1/2 years of events, I dare say). Most of the complaints against the Dixie Chicks, judging from the documentary “Shut Up & Sing,” centered on their lack of patriotism and/or their stupidity.
Well, as for their patriotism, as we all learned during the Clinton impeachment, this is a nation of laws, not men, so criticism of any sitting president is not the same as criticism of America. And criticism of America is not always a bad thing. As for the stupidity comments, I’ll just say that (a) the Dixie Chicks are hella-good songwriters and performers, and (b) George W. Bush once said this:
My job is a decision-making job, and as a result, I make a lot of decisions.
History will decide.
Here’s John Kelso on the city’s animal shelter “debate”:
[I]f you can’t put up with the hassle of driving a few miles out to heck and gone to find the dog pound, you probably shouldn’t be allowed to take a dog.
Yes, he’s being sardonic, but he has a point. I am a bit confused by the public outcry going on now about the plan to move the city’s animal shelter (yes, technically it’s a pound, but I don’t like that word) to a new location in east Austin, away from its present location next to Town Lake (hence the name “Town Lake Animal Center”). There seem to be reasonable arguments for and against the plan, but the city (i.e. the voters) already voted on it last November (although, to be fair, the animal shelter is the last thing listed on the last of seven propositions–volunteers at the shelter worried that the proposition wouldn’t pass because of this hidden placement).
A close friend of my family from my childhood died Sunday in a small plane crash outside of Castroville, Texas. They believe she was flying (it was her plane), but the actual cause may not be known for a long time.
She and I had not been in touch for a long time. I had only seen her once in the past 15 years or so, almost exactly one year ago at my sister’s wedding. She’s just the kind of person where you know the world is a better place because she is in it.
At the very least, to the extent any consolation can come to those who remember her, she died doing something she absolutely loved (flying) with someone she cared about. Maybe, looking at the sum of a person’s life and the people they touched while they were here, that is enough.
So long, Susan. I will miss you.