My cousin Ronny died last week. Ronny had been sick for a while, but his death still came as a surprise. He was the oldest of 11 cousins, all of us within 7 years of each other in age, which made us unusually close.
My cousins all live in Minnesota, but I’m in California. I called Delta Airlines, which has a virtual monopoly on flights from LA to Minneapolis, to book a flight to Minneapolis. The price: $901 for a round-trip ticket. I’d heard of ticket discounting for emergency flights for deaths in the family, so I asked the agent about it. She informed me that yes indeed, there is a discount; a whopping 5% off! Also, you need to fill out a form which requires the funeral director’s signature.
I decided to forego Delta’s generous discount, and proceeded to purchase my ticket online. After putting in my credit card information, I got my confirmation for the ticket. I wasn’t surprised to see I was assigned a middle seat in the second-to-last row. Fortunately, there was a “change seats” option offered, so I went to that page. The diagram showed many seats available, both aisle and window seats, and even other middle seats. However, each of them cost an additional $29, even the middle seats.
The final insult came when I went to print out my boarding pass. If I wanted to bring any luggage on my trip, I had to pay an extra $25 per bag. Since I usually change some of my clothes every day, I paid it.
Delta, you’re such a nice person.
Marries his high school teacher. That’s weird in itself. Then asks her for a divorce while she’s in treatment for cancer.
He then marries the woman he’s been cheating on his first wife with.
Newt lies to his second wife for six years while he’s carrying on an affair with his beloved Calista, then asks number two for a divorce after she’s been diagnosed with MS. No marital grass growing under Newt’s feet.
None of this seems to bother the Republican base, the “party of morality.”
Poor John Boehner. Twenty years of hard work and some tears along the way to becoming the Leader of the House of Representatives. He really does seem like a decent man, the kind of man who should be in Congress, although I’m suspicious of the tears.
Nowadays, he must feel like the antithetical Jim Jones. That is, the leader whose followers went insane. Unlike the Peoples Temple group, as far as I know the Tea Party has not asked him to move to Jonestown yet.
I’ve never seen such an angry speech given by a House Leader who has just passed his own bill. Of course, to say it is his bill is a joke. It’s the bill he had to pass, for reasons of his own, not the people’s.
The bill he and the other sane members of his party would have passed was the deal President Obama presented him with and he agreed to a month ago. A bill that people like me were unhappy with, but could live with.
But, like Jim Jones, there are many things the Tea Party cannot live with. Let’s hope they meet their own sad end and get voted out of our cherished and dysfunctional Congress.
Nancy Pelosi doesn’t cry, and she is happy when she passes a bill.
Is the Republican Party the new “Know Nothing” party? Although the original Know Nothings (Or should I say No Nothins?) were primarily based on anti-immgration and to some extent pro-slavery, the underlying fearful instincts were the same as we see in the contemporary Republican Party. A few examples:
1. Climate Change? I don’t know nothin about that!
2. Evolution? I don’t know nothin but the (scientific) fact that the earth was created 5,000 years ago.
3. Environmental harm from Fossil Fuel Extraction and Consumption? Don’t know nothin about that!
4. Basic Needs fulfilled by Federal Government ( roads, bridges, dams, law enforcement, prisons, air traffic control, libraries, museums, parks, public land use, etc. etc. I don’t know nothin about that! Why can’t private for-profit companies do this more efficiently?
5. The contributions of immigration in the U.S. I don’t know nothin about that!
For information on the original Know Nothings, go to