Make Them Eat Cake

Let them eat cake!

The US House of Representatives voted to defund  $40 billion dollars from the SNAP program of food assistance for the poorest of the poor. SNAP, better known as the food stamps assistance program, is claimed by some in the House to be a program steeped in fraud.   That’s right — people are stealing a whopping $4.50 a day and some people are getting fat off food stamps, making them lazy.… [Read more]

Ask Mrs Vera: Should Starbucks™ provide a place for customers to check their guns?

Vera at Starbucks

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Do you think that Starbucks™ should provide a place for customers to check their guns?

Sincerely Yours, Jerry Baldwin, Seattle, Washington

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Ghislaine Alix Loree

Dear Venti Grandewin,

Thanks for writing!  Despite how much everybody hates your company, they all agree that however gross the food is, and however soul-destroying the general aesthetic of these stores is, when Starbucks™  is considered in terms of its manners, nobody is arguing that the basic approach to the customer experience isn’t polite, tidy and nicely thought out — not compared to most addict shacks, opium dens and needle-drug shooting galleries.… [Read more]

A Teacher’s Value

Teacher Appreciation

After 25 years of teaching in some of the hardest and most challenging schools and situations in all of America, the State of Tennessee has determined my experience and my advance degrees mean nothing. Governor  Bill Haslam and his appointed henchman, Commissioner Huffman, have determined that teachers who have a Doctorate and/or a Masters degree should not get paid for the advanced education.… [Read more]

Dear Mrs. Vera: Please explain why people object to Obamacare.

Vera, with purple, wool do

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Please explain why people object to Obamacare.

Regards Sincerely, Mrs. Petunia Kevorkian

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Marc Huestis

Dear Please Put A Cork In It,

There are as many reasons for not liking something as there are people not to like out there, and our form of representational government insures that most of these unpleasant individuals will be front and center, right in the debate over Obamacare being held in the delightful thought experiment known affectionately, when you are trying to get in its pants, or abusively, if it lets you get into its pants, as Congress.… [Read more]

Free Your Mind

Free Your MInd

“Before you can read me you’ve got to learn how to see me.”

This week’s “Say It In Song“ pick is “Free Your Mind” by En Vogue.

If you’re paying attention at all to the current political climate, it is as it has been for at last the past 5 years: stuck. Stuck in a place of so much negativity that the nation is unable to truly move forward and, in fact, the actions of many appear to have the intention of taking the country backwards.… [Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: Will the Fukushima nuclear plant destroy the world?

Mrs. Vera, in mourning for Sol III.

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Will the Fukushima nuclear plant destroy the world?

Yours Sincerely, Leó Szilárd, Budapest, Hungary

Dear Louis Lizard and all my troubled readers fearing the end of the world before they ever get to see Belgium up close in person and say “Walloon” a lot,

Don’t panic. Let’s all just quickly, quietly and in an orderly manner proceed to the sub-sub basement while thinking centered thoughts about frolicking, boiling dolphins fleeing the Pacific Ocean, um, er, I mean contented piles of algae growing slowly on the shores of Antarctica, as we make our way to the panic room/world headquarters in our new exciting subterranean mise-en-scene, before finally drawing a deep breath and relaxing.… [Read more]

Look up, move forward…

Look up, move forward...

This week the March on Washington was remembered as the spark that ignited the Voting Rights Act and placed the Civil Rights Movement front and center in the minds of the American people. Fifty years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King,  Jr., the most visible African-American leader of his day, exhorted the 250,000 people in attendance and the millions around the country and the world to step forward and demand the same rights and freedoms other people have experienced since the beginning of the Republic.… [Read more]

“We Got to Have Peace”…

Peace Sign

“Through our voice, the world knows, we have no choice…” ~ Curtis Mayfield

This week’s “Say It In Song” pick feels appropriate given the global political climate. Whether it’s Syria, Russia or Iran on the international front, all the people know is that we are moving more and more away from a place of peace.

Isn’t there another way?… [Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: If Obama says he wants to invade Syria, will the GOP be against it, just because?

Vera with rabbit nose

Dear Mrs. Vera,

I am havink many bells, I even haff one that vhen you ring it, it causink countries to divide themselves bitterly along religiousky lines and gatherink up eye-pokink sticks, yes?  If I can find it again, wherever it has gotten off to, should I send it to President Obama? If he rings it while asking “Who vants to invadink Syria with me, da?” will world peace break out as Republicans prepare to do anything and everything to stop his Socialist plot to try and save some Syrian lives no matter how many Syrians might actually not be helped or killed in the process?  … [Read more]

Conservative ‘Idiocracy’

Idiocy and 'idiocracy'

The other day, a guy I know was complaining about the Obamas going on yet another vacation. When I told him that both Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush spent much more time on holiday during the comparable  5-year period in office than President Obama, he told me I must be wrong. I proceeded to show him a graphic indicating the actual number of days George W.… [Read more]

The Anniversary Lives On… #MarchOnWashington

50th Anniversary March on Washington

History. It’s interesting to watch events through their original lens — in their time and in context.

The “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom,” as it was originally called, was one of the largest political rallies for civil, economic and human rights in United States history. It took place on August 28, 1963, in Washington, D.C., and ended up being a pivotal event in this nation’s history.… [Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: Should PFC Bradley Manning have received 35 years in jail or a medal?

Vera with Christmassy onion rings

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Should PFC Bradley Manning have received 35 years in jail or a medal?

Regards, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn Tunguska Hollow, Cloud Heaven… [Read more]

Celebrating birthdays

Celebration cake

 

Birthdays are one of many special occasions that many of us celebrate. Coming around once a year often reminds us that time whizzed quickly past us and that we are now a year older with more experiences to look back on.

As a kid you really look forward to your birthday. You can’t wait to grow older and cut the birthday cake.… [Read more]

3 Days of Peace and Music

Woodstock  3 days

We’re taking a look back into the nation’s history for this week’s “Say It In Song” post: this weekend marks the 40th anniversary of Woodstock, the pivotal music festival that was billed as “An Aquarian Exposition: 3 Days of Peace & Music”.  Rolling Stone Magazine lists this festival as one of the “50 Moments That Changed the History of Rock and Roll.”

It stands the test of time.… [Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: Should Jesse Jackson Jr. receive a suspended sentence because he’s bi-polar?

Vera with silly putty eggs and eisenglass circlets

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Should Jesse Jackson, Jr. receive a suspended sentence after stealing three quarters of a million dollars because he’s bi-polar?

Yours Truly, Vincent van Gogh, Arles, France.

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Bill Bowers

Dear Vincent,

I’ve heard an earful this week from readers wanting to know how to handle themselves around politicians suffering from bi-polar disease, but yours was the only one that generated a lot of very keen interest from the dog when it arrived in the morning mail.… [Read more]

Under Pressure

Under Pressure

It’s the terror of knowing What this world is about Watching some good friends Screaming ‘Let me out’ Pray tomorrow – gets me higher high high Pressure on people – people on streets Turned away from it all like a blind man Sat on a fence but it don’t work Keep coming up with love but it’s so slashed and torn Why – why – why ?[Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: Shouldn’t We Boycott the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia?

Putin, with makeup

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Shouldn’t the United States boycott the 2013 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia?

Limberly and pudgily yours, Lady Nadia Comaneci Witherington Rathbone, Sussex, Blighty

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Michael Johnstone

Dear Lazy Naughty Commie Needy Widow Ring Tone,

Thanks for leaving this question on my voice mail — I love that scary Russian accent, even though I can never decide if you probably look like Boris Badanov and sound like Natasha Fatale or the other way around.  … [Read more]

Pulling back from the eve of destruction

Eve of destruction?

Among the best protest signs I’ve ever seen is one that said, “I can’t believe I still have to protest this shit.” This week’s ‘Say It In Song‘ post was written decades ago. It reminds us of how far we’ve come and how far we still have to go.

 

Yeah, my blood’s so mad feels like coagulatin’ I’m sitting here just contemplatin’ I can’t twist the truth, it knows no regulation.[Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: Would You Rather Be Rich Or Thin?

Vera with silver balls

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Would you rather be rich or thin?

With sincere regards, Cornelius “Commodore” Vanderbilt, De Bilt, Utrecht, Netherlands

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Michael Johnstone

Before addressing this week’s overpriced socio-political scoop of cottage cheese on a pretty plate with a picture of a peach printed on it, I must admit up front that I have never truly understood the rank and title of “Commodore,” though I really appreciate the topic.… [Read more]

The Way it Is

Things can change...

“Standing in line marking time, waiting for the welfare dime ‘Cause they can’t buy a job The man in the silk suit hurries by As he catches the poor old ladies’ eyes just for fun he says, “Get a job”[Read more]