Miz Shoes

Many Are Called, But Few Are Chosen

I was called for jury duty yesterday, in the district court, civil division. One day or one trial. Sworn in to tell the truth. I swelled with civic pride and duty. Unlike most people, you see, I love jury duty. It's a good thing, too, because I must get called every year.
Of course, I wasn't actually chosen for the trial. I think the defense attorney would have wanted me on the case, but the plaintiff's attorney couldn't throw me off fast enough.

It was a medical malpractice case. Negligence on the part of the primary care doctor. The plaintiff had bladder cancer. I could see, by the questioning, where this was going. So I answered those questions as honestly as I could. Even those questions that were unasked, but implied.

I was potential juror number 14, which meant that I got to listen to a lot of answers to the same questions before they got to me. The question was "What do you think about cigarette smoking?" Most of the other jurors answered that they didn't like it. Or that it was a nasty habit. One or two people said they smoked. I said that it was a matter of personal choice, but one that carries with it personal responsibility.

Danger. Warning. This person thinks. Whoop, whoop, whoop.

They asked us if we would be capable of judging a doctor, of holding one accountable. I said yes. I did NOT say that I'd be even more capable of holding lawyers accountable.

They asked how we felt about large money awards. Most people said, of course, if they're called for. I said: "I'm ambivalent." GAH!!! That juror used a multi-sylable word. Danger! Warning!

Could you elaborate? I could, and I did. Pain and suffering are pretty subjective things, no? Sometimes there is merit in the claim, but there are a lot of frivolous lawsuits in this world.

Have we ever had a problem with a doctor? Yes. Elaborate. I did. But then, I allowed as how I was very young and naive, and never sought a second opinion. By the time I did, years later, for what the first doctor claimed was a relapse, there was no sign of the condition the first doctor wanted to do surgery on, nor was there any sign that I'd ever had the condition. I fired the first doctor. I never looked back. And (although I didn't say this)neither did I sue.

What about cancer? Family members? Yes. And close friends. By the time I'd finished my list, the whole room looked a little dazed. Uh, OK, so this is something you might have strong feelings about?

One attorney asked about Monday morning quarterbacking. The young man to my left didn't understand the term, nor had he ever heard of 20/20 hindsight. The lawyer explained the concept and then turned to me... And you? Can you look at the facts and not be a Monday morning quarterback? I snorted, C'mon, anyone who's been a Dolphin fan as long as me knows the futility of that exercise. The room cracked up.

Good. Leave 'em laughing. We were interrogated a little more, and then the lawyers settled in to pick the jury. It came as no surprise to me that I was not selected.

When they say a jury of your peers, what they mean is, someone who has no opinion and never reads the paper.
Miz Shoes

From The Daily Mirror, UK

I give you this essay, in its entirety. Thanks to Seth, for bringing it to my attention.
Nov 5 2004


THEY say that in life you get what you deserve. Well, today America has deservedly got a lawless cowboy to lead them further into carnage and isolation and the unreserved contempt of most of the rest of the world.

This once-great country has pulled up its drawbridge for another four years and stuck a finger up to the billions of us forced to share the same air. And in doing so, it has shown itself to be a fearful, backward-looking and very small nation.

This should have been the day when Americans finally answered their critics by raising their eyes from their own sidewalks and looking outward towards the rest of humanity.

And for a few hours early yesterday, when the exit polls predicted a John Kerry victory, it seemed they had.

But then the horrible, inevitable truth hit home. They had somehow managed to re-elect the most devious, blinkered and reckless leader ever put before them. The Yellow Rogue of Texas.

A self-serving, dim-witted, draft-dodging, gung-ho little rich boy, whose idea of courage is to yell: "I feel good," as he unleashes an awesome fury which slaughters 100,000 innocents for no other reason than greed and vanity.

A dangerous chameleon, his charming exterior provides cover for a power-crazed clique of Doctor Strangeloves whose goal is to increase America's grip on the world's economies and natural resources.

And in foolishly backing him, Americans have given the go-ahead for more unilateral pre-emptive strikes, more world instability and most probably another 9/11.

Why else do you think bin Laden was so happy to scare them to the polls, then made no attempt to scupper the outcome?

There's only one headline in town today, folks: "It Was Osama Wot Won It."

And soon he'll expect pay-back. Well, he can't allow Bush to have his folks whoopin' and a-hollerin' without his own getting a share of the fun, can he?

Heck, guys, I hope you're feeling proud today.

To the tens of millions who voted for John Kerry, my commiserations.

To the overwhelming majority of you who didn't, I simply ask: Have you learnt nothing? Do you despise your own image that much?

Do you care so little about the world beyond your shores? How could you do this to yourselves?

How appalling must one man's record at home and abroad be for you to reject him?

Kerry wasn't the best presidential candidate the Democrats have ever fielded (and he did deserve a kicking for that "reporting for doo-dee" moment), but at least he understood the complexity of the world outside America, and domestic disgraces like the 45 million of his fellow citizens without health cover.

He would have done something to make that country fairer and re-connected it with the wider world.

Instead America chose a man without morals or vision. An economic incompetent who inherited a $2billion surplus from Clinton, gave it in tax cuts to the rich and turned the US into the world's largest debtor nation.

A man who sneers at the rights of other nations. Who has withdrawn from international treaties on the environment and chemical weapons.

A man who flattens sovereign states then hands the rebuilding contracts to his own billionaire party backers.

A man who promotes trade protectionism and backs an Israeli government which continually flouts UN resolutions.

America has chosen a menacingly immature buffoon who likened the pursuit of the 9/11 terrorists to a Wild West, Wanted Dead or Alive man-hunt and, during the Afghanistan war, kept a baseball scorecard in his drawer, notching up hits when news came through of enemy deaths.

A RADICAL Christian fanatic who decided the world was made up of the forces of good and evil, who invented a war on terror, and thus as author of it, believed he had the right to set the rules of engagement.

Which translates to telling his troops to do what the hell they want to the bad guys. As he has at Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib and countless towns across Iraq.

You have to feel sorry for the millions of Yanks in the big cities like New York, Washington, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco who voted to kick him out.

These are the sophisticated side of the electorate who recognise a gibbon when they see one.

As for the ones who put him in, across the Bible Belt and the South, us outsiders can only feel pity.

Were I a Kerry voter, though, I'd feel deep anger, not only at them returning Bush to power, but for allowing the outside world to lump us all into the same category of moronic muppets.

The self-righteous, gun-totin', military lovin', sister marryin', abortion-hatin', gay-loathin', foreigner-despisin', non-passport ownin' red-necks, who believe God gave America the biggest dick in the world so it could urinate on the rest of us and make their land "free and strong".

You probably won't be surprised to learn of would-be Oklahoma Republican Senator Tom Coburn who, on Tuesday, promised to ban abortion and execute any doctors who carried them out.

He also told voters that lesbianism is so rampant in the state's schools that girls were being sent to toilets on their own. Not that any principal could be found to back him up.

These are the people who hijack the word patriot and liken compassion to child-molesting. And they are unknowingly bin Laden's chief recruiting officers.

Al-Qaeda's existence is fuelled by the outpourings of America's Christian right. Bush is its commander-in-chief. And he and bin Laden need each other to survive.

Both need to play Lex Luther to each others' Superman with their own fanatical people. Maybe that's why the mightiest military machine ever assembled has failed to catch the world's most wanted man.

Or is the reason simply that America is incompetent? That behind the bluff they are frightened and clueless, which is why they've stayed with the devil they know.

VISITORS from another planet watching this election would surely not credit the amateurism.

The queues for hours to register a tick; the 17,000 lawyers needed to ensure there was no cheating; the $1.2bn wasted by parties trying to discredit the enemy; the allegations of fraud, intimidation and dirty tricks; the exit polls which were so wildly inaccurate; an Electoral College voting system that makes the Eurovision Song Contest look like a beacon of democracy and efficiency; and the delays and the legal wrangles in announcing the victor.

Yet America would have us believe theirs is the finest democracy in the world. Well, that fine democracy has got the man it deserved. George W Bush.

But is America safer today without Kerry in charge? A man who overnight would have given back to the UN some credibility and authority. Who would have worked out the best way to undo the Iraq mess without fear of losing face.

Instead, the questions facing America today are - how many more thousands of their sons will die as Iraq descends into a new Vietnam? And how many more Vietnams are on the horizon now they have given Bush the mandate to go after Iran, Syria, North Korea or Cuba...?

Today is a sad day for the world, but it's even sadder for the millions of intelligent Americans embarrassed by a gung-ho leader and backed by a banal electorate, half of whom still believe Saddam Hussein was behind 9/11.

Yanks had the chance to show the world a better way this week, instead they made a thuggish cowboy ride off into the sunset bathed in glory.

And in doing so it brought Armageddon that little bit closer and re-christened their beloved nation The Home Of The Knave and the Land Of The Freak.

God Help America.

By Brian Reade
Miz Shoes

Acknowledge, Move On

I spent yesterday with my head in my hands, crying. Crying like I have never cried over an election, not even when I was a hormonal teenager and thought that Richard Nixon was the Anti-Christ.

Of course, in later years, I married the real Anti-Christ, and he didn't look anything like Nixon. And, in retrospect, compared to Darth Cheney and Karl Rove, Nixon was a rank amateur when it came to evil and deceit. But I digress.
Yesterday, I cried. And then I trolled the web for inspiring words. I found them, and I'm going to share some of them with you. Most of these folks are in my blog links, and once you read these passages, you'll know why.

From Bryan Adams' Blog

"Mr. President:

Over the last 24 hours, I've been hearing an endless news loop about how I, a liberal, need to make more of an effort to understand "the heartland." Well, since two of the three branches of government and 51% of Americans are Republican, I think that, actually, you need to make an effort to understand us. The heartland needs to try to understand the brainland.

Unlike you guys, I'm not going to make any effort to wrap our core tenets in false piety or tired cliche. I will tell you who we are, plain and simple. My understanding is that you like oversimplified, one-page memos, so let me give it a try."

Keep reading Bryan's letter.

From Margaret Cho's Blog:

"The Bush administration will be sorry they won this battle, for they now look forward to losing the war. Ultimately, a government cannot defeat its people, no matter how much power they assume or how corrupt they are. Even though today feels like a defeat, there is no loss. There is only opportunity. Now we have the chance to challenge everything, fight everything. The possibilities are tremendous. All the polls, all the posturing, all the opinions that we endured during months leading up to the election provide us with a valuable education on how we think and act as a country."

Read her whole essay.

From the Rude Pundit:

"We are a nation of savages. That is what we decided last night. We belong to the "most advanced" society in the history of the world, and we decided that we would rather be barbarians, hunched over fire pits, ripping meat off the bones of our enemies, raping our women, howling out at the gods for peace in the afterlife."

Read what he has to say about "American Values"
Miz Shoes

I’m Sick

With worry. Obsessively clicking on the elector vote predictor. Flipping back and forth from yesterday's report to today's. I'm all over Salon's War Room, constantly refreshing the page to see the newest bulletins.
So tonight I'll go light up the endorphins with Nic Cage and settle in with a bottle and the RLA to watch the returns.

This is killing me.
Miz Shoes

Can It Be? Oh, Let It Be.

I just pulled this off of Salon:

Cell phone landslide for Kerry

Will the cell phone voting bloc wind up becoming the November surprise? Zogby has just released a path-breaking presidential poll conducted exclusively on mobile phones. And the winner is John Kerry by a landslide margin of 55 to 40 percent. Jimmy Breslin and others have been complaining that traditional telephone polls just aren’t capturing the new voter realities, because so many young people are only reachable by their Nokias. If the Zogby poll, which was conducted in partnership with Rock the Vote, is a reliable indicator, Tuesday night might not be such a drawn-out, nail-biter after all.

-- David Talbot
There is an amazing and bitterly true assessment of the Bush presidency deeper in Salon's pages.

Read it. Weep. Vote.
Miz Shoes

I Went, I Saw, I Screamed

No Mas Bush! and Four More Days!

It was a rainbow of colors, ages, genders. There were Veterans for Kerry, GLT for Kerry, Labor for Kerry, Jews for Kerry, Christians for Kerry, Latinas for Kerry, Women for Kerry, Unions for Kerry. I had a Florida is Kerry Country sign, my sister-girl was holding one that said something about Women's Votes. There were little kids and old folks and everything in between.

The energy was palpable when Kerry took the stage. Of course, having The Boss for your warm-up act makes it pretty hard to come onto a cold stage. Nevertheless, when Kerry made his appearance, the chant went up (and as far as I could tell, it really was spontaneous) "No Mas BUSH!!!"

I needed to see him, and as jaded an old politico as I am, I cannot, for the life of me, tell you why this year I needed to go out and participate in the young man's game. But I did. And I ran into a bunch of the old gang there, too.

Is there some subliminal Kennedy allure? Is Kerry our last, best hope? He was a good speaker. He showed fire, and humor, and passion. Maybe that's it. Maybe it's the feeling that this man does hold our country dear. Holds its ideals dear. And is passionate about the theory of America, about its promise, not just the rewards for those who hold the vested interest.

Despite my jaundiced heart, I believed John Kerry last night. Even though he had my vote, and my yard sign, and my permanently attached campaign button, and my endless prostletizing, I needed, at some deep level, to see him and have my faith confirmed.

It worked.

On the sidewalk, as Star and I walked in to Bayfront Park, I saw a playing card lying face down. There was just the single card, and never one to let a sleeping omen lie, I picked it up and turned it over.

It was the King of Hearts.
Miz Shoes

Rules of Engagement

I ran into a friend of mine in the cafeteria at work. She was wearing a Bush'04 button. I said (only half joking) that I didn't know if we could still be friends, what with that Bush thing...

And this woman, this sweet, Sunday school-teaching woman, looked at me and sneered, "What, you'd want Kerry in charge of anything?"

Uh, yeah. I would. Absolutely. And she, that sweet, dear thing, replied "What? His four months in Viet Nam, and his three Purple Ouchies make him qualified?"
Really. That's a quote. His three Purple Ouchies... I know I snapped something back at her, allowing as how Kerry, at least, could talk without Dick Cheney's hand up his ass, moving his mouth. And I tried to give the quick list of things he'd done, like going after Reagan and Bush the First in the Iran-Contra scandal. And she just laughed at me and told me Kerry had no clue about anything. (Like that brain-dead frat boy she's supporting has a clue...)

And that's when I slapped the crap out of her, and left her lime green dress sitting in an empty heap on the chair.

No. In reality (the world that she, the rest of the Bushies and the Man himself do NOT occupy) I smiled sadly, and said, "Really. I'm sorry, but I don't think we can be friends anymore."

I am so afraid for my country.

Do I go see Kerry and the Boss and the Divine Miss M tonight after work? Or do I finish up my flamingo costume. After all, I've voted. I've seen Miss M and the Boss in full performances. But I want to see Kerry live on the stump. I want to feel the electricty of the mob, and be persuaded that we really can win it all on Tuesday.
Miz Shoes

Because Blood is Thinner Than Oil

Another click of the pink heels to RJ for this hot item:

Bush Relatives for Kerry, a web site by Bush cousins who are appalled by their idiot cousin.

The story from AP includes this quote:
The Bush relatives, supporters of Democratic challenger John Kerry, say they've never met the president but disagree with his policies ranging from the war in Iraq to the environment.

The Web site was launched in late September "to help America heal from the sickness it has suffered since George Bush was appointed president in 2000."
Miz Shoes

Obligatory Bush-Bashing Joke

How many members of the Bush Administration are needed to change a light bulb?
The answer is: 10

1. One to deny that a light bulb needs to be changed
2. One to attack the patriotism of anyone who says the light bulb needs to be changed
3. One to blame Clinton for burning out the light bulb
4. One to tell the nations of the world that they are either "for" changing the light bulb or "for" darkness
5. One to give a billion dollar no-bid contract to Haliburton for the new light bulb
6. One to arrange a photograph of Bush, dressed as a janitor, standing on a step ladder under the banner: "Lightbulb Change Accomplished"
7. One administration insider to resign and write a book documenting in detail how Bush was literally in the dark
8. One to viciously smear #7
9. One surrogate to campaign on TV and at rallies on how George Bush has had a strong light-bulb-changing policy all along,
10. And finally, one to confuse Americans about the difference between screwing a light bulb and screwing the country.

Brilliant! And a tip of the pink shoes to RJ, for sending me the joke.
Miz Shoes

On a Silver Platter

I received an unsolicited e-mail the other day, and because it eventually gave me such pleasure, I give it now to you, in it's entirety.

From: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Date: Sat, 16 Oct 2004 20:29:39 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: More False Documents

RatherGate proved that bloggers are the best fact checkers. That is
why we are writing to a few bloggers asking for help.

Yes Bush Can has collected several documents that are clearly suspect.

But we need your help to prove they are fake:

Let's spring to action before these documents needlessly tarnish the
reputation of our Commander and Chief. You know the drill: analyze the handwriting, search for factual errors, and post your discoveries.

And keep us posted by sending email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Thanks in advance for your help.

Oh, gentle readers, you just know where this is going, don't you?

Here is my reply, in its entirety.

No Bush Can't. Lying sack of shit. Please remove me from your
mailing list, as I am a Yellow Dog Democrat, and an Anybody But
Bush supporter. Lying sack of cowardly, stupid, bigoted, bought
and paid for by the devil, shit. I will never vote for George W.
Bush, nor for Jeb Bush, nor for any other member of that
corrupt, stinking family.

For what ever reason, they have not chosen to reply. But then, to my complete satisfaction, they haven't asked for my help again, either.
Miz Shoes

Sockie on the Head is Too Good for Him

Lying sack of shit. Lying sack of shit. Evasive, lying sack of shit. Smirking, evasive, stupid, lying sack of shit. And there are people in this country with the right to vote who are stupid enough to believe his lies, and not notice the shit.

But let me tell you how I really feel.
Lying, thieving, smirking, squinty-eyed, orange-colored, evasive, fundamentalist, cocksucking, did I mention lying?, cold-blooded,sociopathic lying sack of good for nothing shit.

A "culture of life"? when he'e sending our youth to Iraq and Afganistan to die? For oil? For his fucking friends and patrons' millions?

I hates him, my precious.
Miz Shoes

Oh, and Another Thing

Read this. Read this out loud every time you hear someone say "Liberal" like it's a dirty word.

I just may have found the one person in America with a fouler mouth than me, and the bad sense guts to print their opinions. I keep saying this, and I hope I don't turn into a stalker, but the Rude Pundit is my political idol. I love him. I want him to come and visit me so we can go out and drink ourselves into a coma as we screech invective against the Bush cabal and the filthy running dogs who call themselves journalists.
Miz Shoes

My New Drinking Game

Last night, as expected, the RLA, the Artist Down The Street* and I watched the second presidential debate. We decided to do shots whenever the President used the phrase "Wrong war at the wrong place at the wrong time" in an effort to defame Senator Kerry. Since this resulted in me being shit faced by 9:30, I had to write notes.

*I finally made up a name for my girlfriend down the street, whose name I wouldn't use out of respect for her privacy(Yeah. Right) She will now be known by her acronym:ADS. Not to be confused with the RLA, or Reknowned Local Artist, my husband.

Keep reading my notes:
What was with the wink Dubya just gave after answering Kerry on the Canadian Drug issue? What the hell was that about? Did he think that he'd just won the point? My God, Kerry just spanked the President's ass like Dubya was a naughty schoolgirl.

If we actually provide healthcare to everyone in America, that would be a bad thing? That it would lead to healthcare rationing? Shock and Awe, Fear and Terror... What a one-note.

Kerry's got the proverbial fire in the belly tonight.

"I'm a good steward for the environment." -- George Bush.
"That's just an Orwellian name for your bad environmental policies. We wouldn't sign the Kyoto Treaty. You are a part owner of a timber company." -- John Kerry

"I own a timer company? You wanna buy some wood?" -- George Bush, like he just took a slam dunk, and he swaggers back to his podium. He's kidding, right? He cannot think he won that exchange, either. He's either delusionion, or stupid. Or both. Or on drugs. Or all three.

Who would Dubya appoint to the Supreme Court in his second term? He says: I haven't thought of it, but ... if I need them all to vote for me? And then he smirks like that was funny. Dude, you stole the election, and some of us in this country took issue to it four years ago, and we're still pretty fucking pissed off at you, your family and your chicken hawk administration.

The ADS asks if this is as insane to us as it is to her. What: that President Bush actually invoked the Dred Scott decision in an effort to prop himself up in re: race relations? Or civil liberties, or something like that. Yeah. Pretty fucking insane.

And then he says that there is no litmus test except how they interpret the constitution. I'm drunk, but I still think that that would then, by definition, a litmus test.

Kerry jumps on women's right to choose as a constitutional right that his America will not go backwards on. He explains his understanding of the constitution as being precisely about how he can have one opinion and the questioner can have another and neither of them can use the government to legislate what the other person can believe. Gotta live with it, because it's right to live with it. It's the bottom line in the First Ammendment. If you can say what you think, so can the other guy. Period. End of sentence.

Bush says some shit about a "culture of life".

Waves hand. These are not the droids you seek.

Final Jeopardy question is: Name three times you've made mistakes in office.

Bush puffs himself, can't name anything and says: "I'm prepared to take responsibility for whatever mistakes history accords to me."? What kind of bullshit is that? History?

Kerry says that he may have voted to support the war, and committed money to it, but Bush screwed up how it was spent, and which is the worse crime... He keeps comparing himself to Republicans like Eisenhower and Reagan. Is that because they were less repugnant Repubs or is it the war leader thing with Eisenhower....

In short: smarmy and smug -- Bush, intelligent and poised -- Kerry.

Then we changed channels from C-SPAN to ABC and discovered that because he didn't drool or physically go after John Kerry, that the President was seen to have at least held his own. They're kidding, right?

And so to bed.
Miz Shoes

What I Saw Last Night

The RLA and I watched the "debate" last night between Darth Cheney and Dennis Quaid look alike John Edwards. Isn't that boy just the cutest little thing, bless his heart?

The RLA pointed out that Cheney's suit was so dark that it absorbed the light and made it difficult for the television cameras to focus on him. I said that the Prince of Darkness is called that for a reason. The RLA also noted that once Edwards found his stride and really started to spank the puppet master, that Cheney seemed to fade. Oh, sure, he was still spouting vitriol and venom like Mt. St. Helens on a good (or is that bad) day, but he didn't really seem to have his heart in it.* It just seemed like the starch was starting to go limp.

*And does he really have a heart?

The thing that struck me the most was how much that liver-spotted old pile of dung looks like another old liver-spotted selfish wretch:

Yeah? What do you think?
Miz Shoes

Sockie on the Head

The animals, the RLA and I have a game we play. It's called "Sockie on the Head" and it consists of (when putting socks on or off) taking the sockie and bopping the animal on the head with it. Ming tries to hook it with his claws, and does a mighty fine job of catching them, I may add. Nails bites the sock. Or at least snaps at it. We love this game.
I bring this up because when I got back from the gym last night, the RLA was watching the "debate" and one look at the smirking, simpering chimp and I went wild. I ripped off my gym socks and proceded to beat the talking head on the TV screen. I played Sockie on the Head with Dubya.

Sigh. Dubya. He fumbled, he mumbled and he stumbled his way through 90 of the most excrutiating minutes on TV. It was awful. I couldn't sit through the whole thing and went off to the showers. When I came back he was still there repeating his one memorized line: Kerry changes his mind.

I don't know about you, but if I had never changed my mind about anything, I'd still be a redhead married to the Anti-Christ. I'd still be drinking coffee milkshakes accompanied by Bar-B-Que potato chips and I'd still think that shoulderpads were a good look. Granted, most of those are superficial beliefs, and not the earth-shaking ideals that Dubya was yapping about, but if he hadn't changed his mind about certain things, he wouldn't have gone AWOL in the National Guard and he'd still be drinking like a fish and snorting cocaine. So maybe changing your mind isn't the sin he likes to make it out to be.

Of course, born-again Christian though he is, he still lies like a rug. High crimes and misdemeanors.

I kept waiting for Kerry to answer one of Bush's snivelling platitudes about the value of every American soldier's life with the question "Oh, yeah? Then why haven't you had the grace to go to a single one of their funerals? Why don't you let the American people see the price we're paying by showing photos of the flag-draped coffins of the military dead? And don't tell me it's out of respect, because you are using the dead of 9-11 like fucking wall paper, every chance you get."

But that wasn't going to happen.

I thought whoever dressed Kerry did a great job. Loved the black suit and white shirt: it really played off that great hair of his. It was stark, it was dramatic, it was a dangerous fashion choice and it rocked.

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