Good Clean Fun, GOP Style

The Fortnightly Rant for September 10, 2010, from The New Hampshire Gazette, Volume 254, No. 25, posted on Saturday, January 15, 2011. Here is more evidence — as if it were needed — that we are mired in a jobless recovery: eight Republicans are scrambling for a single job, running against Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-Rochester) for the First Congressional District seat. Their shared plight serves them right. To be accepted as true Republicans they must bitterly oppose regulation of any kind, even for Wall Street, whose shenanigans brought down the economy. They must support trade policies that favor the export, not of American-manufactured goods, but …

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High Stakes & Low Comedy

The Fortnightly Rant for August 27, 2010, from The New Hampshire Gazette, Volume 254, No. 24, posted on Saturday, January 15, 2011. The United States Senate has often been called “the world’s greatest deliberative body,” most often by U.S. Senators. The public at large seems to have a somewhat less exalted view of that chamber. But whatever we lowly peons may think of it, there can be no denying that the Senate is terribly important and enormously powerful. Morbid curiosity has prompted us to quantify that power. Considering that it takes just forty Senators to stop a nation of 306 million people dead in its …

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Patriotic Saboteurs

The Fortnightly Rant for August 13, 2010, from The New Hampshire Gazette, Volume 254, No. 23, posted on Saturday, January 15, 2011. We have seen fit, from time to time, to criticize many aspects of the Republican Party. Its leaders, their methods, and their alleged principles have all been bludgeoned regularly in these pages. In fact, we have found it necessary to rail against the GOP on a non-stop basis since we first took over this venerable newspaper more than twenty years ago. Republicans would no doubt argue that our record reflects an innate bias, a preference for the Democratic Party. That is not just …

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The Farce Estate

The Fortnightly Rant for July 30, 2010, from The New Hampshire Gazette, Volume 254, No. 22, posted on Saturday, January 15, 2011. Casting stones is a risky business even in the best of cases. What’s more, your risk escalates with the egregiousness of the behavior you’re trying to condemn. Whenever you give in to temptation and deny another person’s humanity, you jeopardize your own. That being said, the most revolting thing about the recent Andrew Breitbart/Shirley Sherrod flap is not what the self-styled “journalist” did. Releasing a bit of deceptively-edited video to manufacture a race-baiting narrative that is completely antithetical to the truth is exactly …

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Heads They Win, Tails We Lose

The Fortnightly Rant for July 16, 2010, from The New Hampshire Gazette, Volume 254, No. 21, posted on Saturday, January 15, 2011. There don’t seem to be an awful lot of opportunities out there for the average person right now, what with unemployment running at 9.3 percent and the Senate refusing to extend long-term unemployment benefits. One golden opportunity, though, is hanging in plain sight, readily available to anyone who will take the trouble to grab it. Sadly, it won’t pay the rent or put food on the table. Sadder still, few will take advantage of it. This is the best chance in more than …

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Afghanistan, Year Nine

The Fortnightly Rant for July 2, 2010, from The New Hampshire Gazette, Volume 254, No. 20, posted on Saturday, January 15, 2011. Installing and removing generals from top U.S. commands is usually a process as formal and scripted as Kabuki theatre. Even when generals are being removed for poor performance, a dignified gloss is often applied. Last week’s replacement of General Stanley A. McChrystal seemed less like a piece of classical Japanese drama than an episode of “Jersey Shore.” The country hasn’t seen anything like it since 1951, when Harry fired Doug. War as Reality Show America’s news media used to think of themselves as …

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