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Learning to Aim Low: the Flea Circus of American Education

February 7, 2011 2 comments

Can You Jump High Enough to Escape the Jar of Your Confinement

By Joe Bodolai © 2011, All rights reserved

I heard a “poem” read by a Chicagoan named Roger Bonair-Agard in which he shared some research he had done about how fleas were used in popular entertainment, usually at traveling fairs about a century ago. He mainly used this research to support his remarks about certain amusements of white people and a political analysis stemming from that metaphor.[1] Fleas, according to the poet, can pull over 100 times their body weight with their disproportionately strong legs. But the most amazing fact I learned from his work is that fleas, upon being confined in a jar for three days, will never again in their lives attempt to jump higher than the lid of the jar of their glass prison.  He added, “neither will their offspring.”[2]

Education: Training Performers for the Great American Flea Circus?

This confinement and likely frustration, pain, or hard-earned knowledge, trained them to never be able to escape and, perhaps more interestingly, not willing or able to try. It made the amusements of their captor able to be confined to an easily contained area. More importantly, this “training” seems to have created a hereditary lack of ambition, or at least learned behavior handed down.

It also sparked me into thought about American education. Since my descent into closer-than-I’d like proximity with the material and psychological ghetto of the American underclass, I have spent time volunteering as a GED tutor. Some of my students are felons on parole, current and former drug addicts and dealers, gang bangers, and a few just plain nice people. I lose students from time to time due to return to old ways or, in one particularly horrible case, being shot nine times. From this experience, I have learned just how truly astounding some of what people in these circumstances have not learned or, worse, what they have made up or guessed along the way. From my first-hand experience, this includes:

  • World War I is also known as the Vietnam War, in which “we kicked ass.”
  • Europe is a big place on the map and is located under… well, Europe. We usually call this “Africa”.
  • Hitler was a Muslim. (Mission accomplished, JDL.)
  • And, from practical retail experience, an ounce is also 28 grams.
No Need for Reading, Math with Pictures on the Keys!

Now I could think of this simply as a lack of education and I would be correct. Why and how is such a widespread lack of education in America possible? And what are its effects on society and the future? These are serious issues that I am probably “not qualified” to answer, so I will. I don’t need “qualifications” bestowed upon me from such advocates of the privatization and monetization of public education. Children are not a “human resource” or “human capital”. Yet, it seems that American education is creating a lumpenproletariat of indentured ignorant servitude. These new workers are ignorant of not only basic reading, writing, and math, but more importantly, of curiosity, skepticism, and ambition. Those are three values that once did allow an American dream to exist.

One need only to go into any fast food “store” today to see that cash registers have had their number keys replaced with words or even pictures of the menu items. Instead of needing to count out change when one is presented with a five-dollar bill for an order of $4.37, an automatic change chute slides the coins out.

My experience as a well-educated professional seeking some sort of meaningful employment is informative and eye-opening at least to me.

While the average uneducated unemployed young man or woman could easily score in the 99th percentile of those being able to

The Bronte Sisters of Vulgarity

correctly name all the Kardashians, this has not been traditionally the kind of marketable job skill that once did make American industry, service, and innovation the best in the world. Regrettably, what was once mere trivia is now  a kind of knowledge which all too well serves the new breed of what used to be called “journalist” whose “career” working as a Jagermeister promo rep precisely requires advanced degrees in Kardashianality. In other words, American capitalism is reaching an apotheosis whereby American work is only valuable as marketing and actual creation of goods is left to the other Third World. Oh, and for those idealists who aspire to a “writing” job, there are many available on craigslist, offering the illusion of being able to be close enough to get a whiff of a celebrity fragrance. If one does not appreciate the nuances of the job descriptions, “writer” is a volunteer activity in the service of anyone who successfully fishes them in. The writer is clearly one rung below “intern”. Writers will be rewarded with their “own byline” (!) and “exposure”.

Where are the young people who actually question the assumptions that guide the forces that control their lives? If you are one of them, let me know. I have a lot more to say about this and I feel that I should be funny at least in part of this. I can’t, however, when I see what is around me, the eager sheep following the Judas goat of media to the lamb kebab factory.

The fleas are in the jar. The trainers have them right where they want them. Here’s some amusing colored toxic balls to juggle. Enjoy the show!


[1] The audio of this may be found at the excellent site of Chicago Public Media, home of such outstanding radio as This American Life and Dynamic Range, where I heard the podcast. I’d be more specific but I’m busy typing this. You’ve got the internet, look it up.

[2] He also explained that the fleas’ so-called trained antics, such as playing tiny drums or with balls (soaked in camphor) were really their desperate attempts to survive such chemicals or fatal temperatures, resulting in amusing writhing. This makes wonderful cocktail party conversation (especially for us white people) so check him out somewhere on that site. Later.

Egyptian Rebel Hip Hop Group Releases Anti-Government Hit

February 5, 2011 1 comment

Time Out From My Writing to Introduce You to the Voice of Arab Resistance in Egypt

By Joe Bodolai (c) 2011, All rights reserved.

Egyptian Rappers Arabian Knightz Throw Down Hot Beats

A new song from Egyptian rappers Arabian Knightz is sweeping the Arab world as protesters and supporters have taken up the group’s release of “Rebel”. Spread the word through the song and its Arabic lyrics:

They killed us, slaughtered us, put us behind bars/ Tortured us, robbed us, scarred us, terrorized us and ignored us/ But the Egyptian people won’t die.They will conquer/ My country is your country/ My money, your money/ And enslaving us must end.

Hear the song at

http://www.myspace.com/arabianknightz

Read more:

http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2011/02/05/rap-song-egypt.html#ixzz1D8ha…

Tiny-Island-Invading Ignorant Burger-Loving iPhone Thieves

January 29, 2011 3 comments

In Which I Find Out Yet More Depressing Stuff About America

By Joe Bodolai © 2011, All rights reserved.

On my way to the homeless restrooms, or as I used to call it, “the Los Angeles Central library”, I was listening to yet another

Grenadan Communist Enslaving Mediocre U.S. Medical Students Finally Stopped by Heroic U.S.Invasion

podcast of WBEZ Chicago’s CBC-Radio style program This American Life on my new iPhone. The show included documenting the weapons-grade bullshit foisted on fifth graders visiting the Reagan Library, one perhaps in which the homeless do not feel as welcome as they might in the comfortable crack den appointed facilities on Flower Street, conveniently located just blocks from Skid Row. The excrementality of the Reagan docent included making sure the visiting students knew that the invasion of the tiny island of Grenada[1] under The Great Man’s Commander-in-Chiefiness was to prevent an unholy communist alliance in our own hemisphere – Grenada, Cuba, and Nicaragua (!) – teaming up to invade the USA and turn children just like them into evil communist slaves. “In communism, when you have a job,” she rhetorically asks, “who gets to keep the money?” Apparently, “the communists” do. Since it was previously recorded, I was unable to ask, “in America, if you don’t have a job, who gets to keep the money?” That’s easy.  “The Americans do.” Wall Street, bankers, and other thieves and criminals like the guy who stole my iPhone that I used to listen to this show. I suspect it was the Marseilles-style pickpocket who jostled me then quickly disappeared into the bustling commerce of Guatemala City North on 6th & Wilshire as I was in line to board the rolling virus and spewed-menudo can called the 720 bus.

For the better part of my life, having the equivalent of a new iPhone was just something normal. No worry about the expense, it was just another Apple gadget I might have adopted early with the passion of an Angelina Jolie. Now, however, jobless and pretty close to homeless these days, the handheld computer/entertainment center which had bonus telephonic capability was my connection to the professional middle class world that seemed so far away. (I’m aware that I still have my computer, email, the internet, and this blog to feel part of the world, but with no internet access where I supposedly “live”, and, for those of you who also like to feel part of the larger world, it’s my own private Idahell, a Pelican Bay on info lockdown.)

Have You Seen My iPhone? It Looks Like This, but With Way Cooler Apps

Later, iBereft, I was seated at a counter in the library café, where next to me two gentlemen have come into a conversation over their own iPhones. After exchanging the usual verbal business cards (much like dogs sniffing each other in the…. park) and the establishment of each other’s 16 or 32-giggishness and 3G/iPhone 4 cred, the subject of one man’s accent is finally broached. Now the accent in question was not the speech and accent so common to the mouth-breathingly stupid of the guy in the sagging bizarre-brand jeans, the SouthPole wearing, tatted-up Lakers Fan but the accent of the other guy, who looked and dressed like Eminem and spoke with a French accent. It was, in fact, a Belgian accent. What follows is a word-for-wordish account of some of their conversation:

Lakers Fan: What kind of accent is that?

Belgian Guy: Me? I am from Belgium.

Lakers Fan: No shit. What you doing up here?

(NOTE: “Up here?” Where exactly does he think Belgium is?)

Belgian Guy: I am with my girlfriend. We are visiting.

Lakers Fan: From Belgian (sic)?

Belgian Guy: Yes. It is very nice. Warm. Where I am from it is rain and cold.

Lakers Fan: So what language you speak over there?

Belgian Guy: Where I am from we speak French.

Lakers Fan: Oh, you French?

Belgian Guy: Belgian. I am from Belgium.

Lakers Fan: And you speak French too. Cool.  I got some Spanish but don’t talk it. You speak Spanish too[2]?

Belgian Guy: I am learning. My girlfriend, she is Spanish.

Lakers Fan: Mexican chicks are hot.

Belgian Guy: I meet her on a beach. Very warm. 30 degrees.

Lakers Fan: Excuse me?

Belgian Guy: Very warm. 30 degrees hot.

Lakers Fan: Mine’s hot too. Let me ask you something, okay? I seen on TV that over there French people don’t say “quarter pounder with cheese”. Right?

Belgian Guy: I do not understand.

Lakers Fan: McDonalds. You know. McDonalds. Quarter pounder.

Belgian Guy: Yes, McDonalds.

Lakers Fan: You say a “Royale with cheese”. Like they showed on TV.

Belgian Guy: Excuse me?

Lakers Fan: At McDonalds.

Belgian Guy: Yes, McDonalds.

Lakers Fan: You don’t say “quarter pounder with cheese”?

Belgian Guy: No, I do not think so.

Lakers Fan:  You say “Royale with cheese”. The metric system?

Belgian Guy: Ah, yes.

Lakers Fan: So let me ask you something then.

Belgian Guy: Yes.

Lakers Fan: How do you know you’re actually getting a quarter pounder?

Aside from the fact that this snippet of reality reveals the same kind of immediate distrust of anything foreign and flat out

Average Wall Street Bonus Paid: $430,000. Imagine if they actually did something productive!

revelry in ignorance shown by the Reagan Library tour guide, the thing that really galled me was simply – this guy had an iPhone and I didn’t!  I asked him “how do you like your iPhone?” It’s awesome, yadda yadda doo. He could get me one too. He knows a guy, the guy he took his to, who could hook me up, jailbreak one for me. He gets them all the time. “Where’d you get yours?” I asked. You guessed it: he stole it!

The average “bonus” paid to Wall Street bankers last year was $430,000. I’m sure they all have iPhones too.


[1] The invasion of this tiny island was perhaps the last great United States military victory, a “five-star resort of a war”, code named “Operation Urgent Fury” and relates in this context to the homeless library patrons’ rush for the entrance immediately upon opening.

[2] Perhaps the man assumes that, like Los Angeles, Belgium is also full of Mexicans like everywhere else on earth. Or possibly that Belgium is actually in Mexico.

For another look at chronic ignorance and blathering philistinism unmasked go to Townie Planet.

Tea Party’s Mad Hatter Serves Up Idiot Sandwich

January 25, 2011 1 comment

By Joe Bodolai © 2011, All rights reserved

Mad Hatter Bachmann Outlines Foreign Policy in Response to Obama Corporate Video

Republican Tea Party Hostess Michelle Bachmann (hailed by the gals at Jezebel as “the Miles Davis of Idiocy”)  extended her rhetorical pinky as she served up her social group’s serving of idea sandwiches with crusts cut off last night in response to President Obama’s waste of time platitude festival featuring a large cast of applauding extras, cost of which was apparently paid for by Israel and major banks. Bachmann, however, went into stomach-turning overdrive. She invoked the image of Marines hoisting the flag at Iwo Jima as somehow related to her self-image in what must truly be the delusional March Hare Madness playoff pukefest in the parking lot party in her head. As a public service, I have processed the image through the Say It Ain’t So, Joe! TruthMachine to more accurately visually represent her free-form jazzy smacked out Miles Davis idiocy:

AIPAC Foreign Policy to Provide Jobs for U.S., McRibs for McWorld

My view on the state of the Obama Presidency are more thoroughly outlined from this article after his first year in office:

“What if Obama Had Won the Election?”

Note: I did not create the image above. It was sent to me with a series of found images. If anyone knows the creator, I wish to credit and thank her or him.

Torture? Murder? Is This The America We Want in the World?

January 23, 2011 2 comments

Treatment of Detainees No Different Than the Worst of Totalitarian Dictators. Do We Need to Do This?

By Joe Bodolai (c) 2011, All rights reserved

Reality Commemorating America

I saw the article quoted below on CNN this morning. It’s been no surprise to me and the image above is something I wanted to point out since the postage rate was 37 cents back in the Bush Administration:

Washington (CNN) — New documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union show “unjustified homicide” of detainees and concerns about the condition of confinement in U.S.-run prisons in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay, according to the ACLU.
Thousands of documents detailing the deaths of 190 U.S. detainees were released by the ACLU on Friday. The U.S. military gave the ACLU the documents earlier in the week as a result of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed by the rights group.
Among the documents are autopsy reports and military investigations, including 25 to 30 cases the ACLU says it believes are “unjustified homicide.” Some of the homicides in the documents are widely known and have been reported in the media, such as the case of four Iraqi detainees executed by a group of U.S. soldiers and then pushed into a Baghdad canal in 2007.

Okay. That says “homicide”! Enough already. President Obama has not changed anything in this regard from the Bush Administration. Do you think the guy you voted for won the election? I’m not so sure. I wrote the article at the link below a year after his inauguration. Things have only gotten worse.

What if Obama Had Won the Election?

TSA Makes Lady Gaga Flash Her Nude Snooki to College Football Cheerleaders!

January 1, 2011 Leave a comment

Pointless Sensational Headline Optimized for Search Terms, Explained Below

By Joe Bodolai © 2011, All rights reserved

Ambigutastic!

You Binged This Poof-Coiffed Guidette

I found out that I could see what search terms people used to find or happen across my blog. Surprisingly, it wasn’t “brilliant writing”, or “funny”, or “smart”. It was Snooki. Yes, people were on the prowl for something to read about the diminutive poofed guidette from a “reality” show called Jersey Shore. Immediately following in her spraytanned wake was the magnificent meatdress majesty of Lady Gaga, even more closely followed by those probing for TSA. I am not making this up. So I decided to combine this holy trinity of interest in things Say It Ain’t So, Joesian with my most popular subject, college football with a topping of always popular cheerleaders.

So, for those of you who have found your treasured word within, welcome. Unfortunately, I have no story or analysis to reward your googling or binging. Please feel free to combine these search terms in your imagination. Should this article somehow become my most read item, despite being empty of any insight, information, or entertainment, I will consider getting a lobotomy and dumbing down my life even more and apply for a job in internet SEO keyword marketing, or better yet, politics. Like the Obama Administration or the Tea Party, may you be rewarded with all sizzle, no steak.

Pedophiles, Priests Urged to Apply

In the meantime, should you have found your way here because you searched for me, I wish you a Happy New Year, filled with substance, joy, success, love, and peace for all.

Here are some of the articles that seemed to generate Snookified Gagalicious TSAhole probing during the past year:

Snooki to Host White House Correspondents’ Dinner

Lady Gaga Admits “I’m Not A Hermaphrodite But That Would Be Cool!

TSA Introduces New “Hot or Not” Naked Body Scanners

TSA Recruiting Pedophiles on Craigslist for Holiday Travel Season

TSA Recruiting Pedophiles on Craigslist, “You Can Fondle Miss USA!”

November 16, 2010 3 comments

Pedophiles, Sex Offenders, Freelance Thugs, and Defrocked Priests Flock to New Jobs

By Joe Bodolai (c) 2010, All rights reserved

“We Just Got a Former Miss USA here and these super hot women are the best way for terrorists to operate. We have to examine them extremely carefully, leaving no fold unfondled or breast unturned. And the nude photos will require further study by our trained sex off… officials,” said Transportation Sexual Assault spokesgroper Wayne Probst.” “I mean, she can lie all she wants but when you see the video you can tell she’s hot and requires a good groping. I wouldn’t be able to sleep at night if I didn’t do my job as thoroughly as possible over and over and over again. I can’t just wipe my hands and let her go.”

They’re making me go – making me do this. Making me choose to either get molested, because that’s what I feel like and, or, or, go through this machine that’s completely unhealthy and dangerous. I don’t want to go through it, and here I am crying.” — Former Miss USA Susie Castillo

The Transportation Sexual Assault board is now recruiting on Craigslist for new gropers, squeezers, laptop droppers, and lumpen mouth-breathing  power trippers as the busy holiday travel season approaches. Next week’s Thanksgiving weekend is traditionally the busiest travel time of the year, with the popular Major Religion Shopping Season to follow immediately afterward. “College coeds claiming to be going to games, MILF-type women in sexy sweaters, sneaky blogger types with books or computers, or precocious three year olds with suspiciously cute stuffed animals may be concealing nuclear titty weapons, nice ass bombs, testicle implant devices, wheelchair-powered incendiary charges, prosthetic leg devices containing more than three ounces of liquid,  or any stuff we haven’t made up yet so we’re going to have to get our hands in deep,” said TSA spokesgroper Cletis Yokelmuster, the agency’s Director of Lingerie, Panties, and Accidental Trouser Stains and former Archbishop of  Tulsa, explained. “Those fancy laptops they have might be loaded with porn we don’t have so we need to destroy it for their own protection. And don’t even get me started on those hidden tampons! You wouldn’t believe where they hide ’em! Sometimes I feel like one of those French truffle-sniffing pigs.”

CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE

Transportation Sexual Assault ad on Craigslist Seeks Pedophiles, Sex Offenders, Priests, Goons

Yokelmuster also pointed out that the TSA has “every right” to do “whatever the (copulate) we want” to passengers by “Executive (copulating)’ Order”. “We need people who don’t have a problem grabbing no matter what age. He explained that “look, I don’t like feeling up some 87 old grandmother in Depends for no reason, okay? That’s Jimbo over there. That’s his scene, I mean, area of expertise. I’m more of a middle school cheerleader or altar boy terrorism suspect expert.”

TSA Procedures Are "Time Tested and Hot"

He also pointed out that the TSA is merely “doing what authorities have had to do for centuries — get chicks naked and terrorize the (sentient fecal matter) out of guys too. And hey, kids may be cute, but we already know that terrorism is pretty much everything or at least anything we say it is… Or don’t.” Some historic antecedents for the new TSA policies were on display in a nine-minute  XXX-rated PowerPoint presentation which unfortunately ended prematurely. Spokesmen blamed the premature ending on “Windows 7 crashing from the processors getting too hot to handle the speed and the motion of my nimble talented fingers on the delicate keyboard.” UPDATE: TSA goons at LAX volunteered for free overtime for “extra thorough security searches” last night as news spread that Rihanna and Katy Perry were traveling on the same flight.

New Naked Body Scanners Can be Fun, says Spokeshole

For a look at how the new machines and techniques are being received by Americans, Say it Ain’t So, Joe! provides this video report:

Notice: the above post contains the term “sentient fecal matter” and should be read accordingly.