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And Nobody Mentions the 3rd Place Situation. (Well, Would You?)

So watching the Saints Falcons game last night, the Manning Idolatry reached new heights.


For instance, last night we learned ovah and ovah again from Joe Theisman that Drew Brees is one fuck of an awesome fella because, you know, he bought a house in New Orleans on the same street as … wait for it, wait for it … Archie Manning.




"Football Royalty" they are now calling the Manning Clan.


Hey, maybe if Manny bought a house next to Archie Manning the press would staht saying nice things about him?


Yeah, right. More likely the headline in the Globe would be "There Goes the Neighborhood: Residents Complain Superstar Neighbor Is Aloof and 'Strange.'"


Interestingly, Horrigan has a piece in the Herald today quoting doctors saying that with Manny's type of injury you want to first try and give it time to heal and that "being sidelined for the better part of a month is normal."


Yeah, and right after that the Muslims will apologize for conquering and occupying Spain for 800 or so years. That's so not gonna happen.



Nice hb. I thought last night's Saints/Falcons game was a great night for New Orleans and a pretty decent few hours of football.

That said, in regards to today's strip's last cell, let's not be vulgar and partisan -- plenty of equally horrific events have taken place over the course of history in the name of Christianity, too.

(knock knock) I'm here!

I'll be as fucking vulgar as I choose to be. Thanks, Nanny. :)

BTW there's this little thing called "characterization." Perhaps you've heard of it? Doug is a character with certain beliefs and motivations and they are echoed in the things he chooses to say.

The same is true with all the characters. I don't willy nilly assign dialog to the bubbles.

Haw! In your Face, nanny!

Hey, I'm sure the rag heads will apologize - all great religions do now and again. Why just look at Pope [Eggs] Benedict stumbling all over himself mea culpa-ing at his beach house over [truthful] words written about that same time as the Moors occupying Spain.

F- 'em. Anybody got a really good reason why we don't go and turn the whole region into a sheet of glass? Oh yeah, $2.50/gal. gas for my Hummer...

Aw , what the fuck, I like vulgarity and partisanship. And while I am at it the camel humpers can suck my massive clintonian dick. Jesus H. Shitforbrains, I am no big papist (rather, a Papi-ist), but if Benny has to crawl on his belly with those sand twats for something like that, then we are all doomed. As if we are not already doomed. Read the New Yorker for the last 3 weeks if you don't understand, the Rag Boyz are everywhere just ready to drop cucka all over us, when the 72 Virgins are teed up for them.

lc, American, Fuck Yeah

Gas went below $2.00 a gallon around here this week. Just in time for the elections. I'm sure it's a coincidence though.

Am I the only one that sees the irony in the jihadists reacting with violence every time somebody accuses them of being violent? Maybe we should try accusing them of being pot smoking peaceniks.

"We are a religion of peace. And if you say otherwise, we'll cut your fucking head off, infidel!"


A good reason, Rob?

How about: because we don't plasticize Oklahoma for McVeigh or bomb the ever-loving crap out of the NC mountains to try and root out Nichols...

Of course, if you humanize any of the "rag heads", you know, "the enemy", then you'll never envigorate the political capital necessary to put your country's kids in front of a bullet long enough to solve deep-seated father approval issues that come by finishing off the source of your dad's political difficulties.

Ask a Yankees fan if they feel the enmity towards Lester that they do towards Ortiz and Varitek. All three are Red Sox.

As for 3rd place, meh. The Blue Jays should have been a bigger contender all year with the pitching and lineup that they had...it's just the division they're in. Fortunately for them, they always seem to have our number and that turf field seems to be laced with kryptonite. This late season turn of affairs seemed bound to happen once we started playing in the gutter. Luckily, we can't fall to 4th. Not because I think it would make any difference to the Red Sox or fans, but because I never want to see that crap-eating Angelos think that he's doing anything right in Baltimore. The Orioles were my first team and will always have a place in my fandom, but not Angelos. The silver lining to the Red Sox F.O. can always be that it's not the Orioles'.

They react with violence whenever someone questions their historical performance? Sounds like transplanted MFY fans if you ask me.

That being said, I suppose that their idea of sabermetrics might be a little different than the one championed by Bill James & Company. Y'know, OBP being 'one-handed beheading percentage' and all that.

Meanwhile, kudos to the Saints.

Had a similar reaction to the Theezeman comment about Brees buying a house near Archie Manning. Nothing like being "one with the people" from your gazillion-dollar home with the eight pools and such. No knock against Brees/Manning for owning such houses, just a misplaced comment.

Good night for the Saints. Bad night for the Sox bats.

Posted this over at Surviving Grady, too:

Spending all my nights,
All my money going to the beer man
Doing anything just to get your defense off my mind
But when the offseason comes,
I'm right back where I started again
Trying to trade you is just a waste of time

Manny come back, any kind of fool could see
There was something in every stat about you
Manny come back, you can blame it all on CHB
He was wrong, and we just can't win without you

All day long, wearing a mask of false bravado
Trying to keep up the smile that hides a tear
But as the sun goes down, I get that empty feeling again
How I wish to Papi that you stay here

Now that I put it all together
Give me the chance to make you see
Have you used up all the love in your heart
Nothing left for me, ain't there nothing left for me

--"Manny Come Back", (Baseball) Player

Brees is from the glitzy side of Austin. I'm pretty sure 8 pools is nothing new. But whatev - football players bore me to tears and the current crop of commentators is just as bad.

Oh and Kaz...

"Of course, if you humanize any of the "rag heads", you know, "the enemy", then you'll never envigorate the political capital necessary to put your country's kids in front of a bullet long enough to solve deep-seated father approval issues that come by finishing off the source of your dad's political difficulties."

That just about sums up the last few years, doesn't it? Well put.

Wow, the political commentary is pointed today. Just liked the stake they would put your head on if you spoke your mind.

Agree or disagree with the war, those people are still living in the stone ages as far as I'm concerned. Did you see how Theo Van Gogh was murdered in Holland??

If you don't "get it", talk to a veteran that's been to Afganistan. My best buddy has been there twice.

And a warning to them all. Don't fuck with the Pope! He's one bad MF.

Back to the Sox. Have they set an all time record for lack of run support for a pitcher this season? I feel for Wakefield.

Tears in my eyes, Kaz. Here's hoping that you can someday soon offer your lyrical stylings to "We Are The Champions".

Kaz - Thanks for raining on my rant.

Of course you are right, but I'm still stuck with the impression that no amount of reason will ever overcome the irrational hatred and intolerance Middle Eastern Muslims display for anything Western. There seems no room for co-existence with their POV.

"If this person were really someone reasonable, he would not agree to remain at his post one minute, but would convert to Islam immediately."
--- Mohammed Gaddafi, son of Muammar, on the Pope [quoted in Slate.com]

WTF?!? I actually find no humor in [my] Pope's apologies. I'm depressed enough about matters that at the moment I find no humor in the absurdity of these fucking Imams threatening Jihad for a comment that Muslims are violent. I appreciate your take, and wish I could concur. All I see is a people with no meaning to their pathetic lives other than the promise of their 72 virgins after taking as many lives as their bomb-laden backpacks will afford them. (What, by the way, do the Muslim women bombers get, a large -- well, for an Arab -- dick that's not for a change encrusted with goat shit?)

I'm pissed off this morning (could you tell?) and the last frame set me off. Guess that happens when the Sox suck their way into third place.

Sorry, guys. I'll step away from the edge now. Happy for NOLA today. Leno said the other night that this is the first time in a long time New Orleans has actually cheered someone named Bush. Heh.

Point well taken, Scott. But me personally? If I had the misfortune to be dropped here on earth at the intersection of "rocks and some dirt" where the homes resemble, um...rocks and dirt, then I might behave as though I lived in the stone age. Just sayin'...

Oh, and thanks, Kaz. As if my mood weren't crummy enough, now I'll have "Baby Come Back" running through my head the rest of the morning. :-P

(Pretty damn clever lyrics though. Thanks for sharing.)

As nice as the NOLA love-fest was last night, can we talk about the absolutely horrible job ESPN is doing with Monday Night Football, from the lack of replays and horrible camera placing to the really obnoxious scoreboard that's always covering the lower hash marks at the line of scrimmage to the godawful play-by-play -- it just stinks. And what the hell is Tony Kornheiser doing in the booth anyway? It makes you pine for the days of Dennis Miller.

Me, I'll take my Al Michaels baritone and pacing and my John Madden-actually-knowing-something-about-the-game color commentary over that sorry excuse for ESPN Mobile advertising.

It would seem Soxaholix readers' comments reflect the precarious state of Sox Nation at the moment. After such a dreadful two-month stretch that feels like five years, even at the refuge that is Soxaholix one finds nasty partisanship, racism and rancor in full effect. Woe is we...

Oh, well then, Theo van Gogh and flag-waving veterans...

Whew, glad you've just provided me new justification for blowing up the ones that don't want my head on a pike just to get to the ones that do.

By the by, h.b., no strip yet on the stand-up routine by Chavez followed by the Christy Mihos hypocrisy and Jerry McDermott (ugh, why'd it have to be my rep?) push for replacing the Citgo sign with a giant American flag? Considering the current backdrop of the site, I thought it might have crossed your desk.

I found Dennis Miller to be refreshing. It's just that the egomanical Al Michaels stepped all over his lines in an attempt to torpedo him, just like he did to Boomer Esiason.

If you listen to Boomer's analysis on his weekly WEEI morning appearance, it's the best 20 minutes on pro football every week.

Rob, it's more systematic than you suggest...we'll begin to see real showdowns in Europe in 10+ years as the Islamic immigrant birth rate gives the imams leverage in the political process.

It's actually a testament to our political system that the immigrant muslim population in the US has assimilated so well. The London and Madrid bombings were perpetrated by native born muslim citizens in those countries.

NY Sox fan amuses me...when did partisanship become a bad word?

Answer: When someone says something you disagree with, rather than refuting arguments on the merits, you now dismiss him for being a "partisan."

(and you come up with some bullshit attributions for his motives, like frustration over the red sox, for example)

This country has thrived on "partisan" debate for 220+ years.

And the off-season has really started around here. Isn't this a baseball blog?

Hey HB, I have your religion of peace right here: Christianity! And if you don't agree, well I'll just bomb the shit out of you. Now that Mel Gibson has gone to the sides of the nincompoops, we're going to have a "Passion of the Christ" DVD burning.

Nope, this really isn't a baseball blog 100%.

For me, it's really a chance to play around with writing dialog, developing character, poking at pop culture, as well as trying out new under-the-hood CSS display schemes.

Baseball, or rather the Red Sox, is just the backdrop.

In the offseason, we go days w/o mentioning baseball, especially on Thursdays. Right fellow Lostaholixs?

I'll admit it right now: Bill O'Reilly there was my sock puppet.

Since we all seem to be throwing our political two-cents around, here's my pet peeve: people who say that "violence only leads to more violence."

A noble sentiment. And at times absolutely true. But my question is, does ANYONE believe that we can "negotiate" with the radical Islamic terrorist set? Anyone?

If so, please give me your ideas, I'd love to hear them. But I've yet to meet a single person who thinks negotiation is an option. So what's the alternative? We all convert to Islam? We just wait around for the next attack, and the next and the next, until some nut-job gets his hands on a nuke and levels a major city of five?

What exactly IS the alternative to violence in this particular case? (And please don't go all anti-Iraq war here, I have many reservations about that particular target myself. I want to hear alternatives to fighting terrorists - to using violence to ultimately solve a problem.)

Sorry, make that a major city OR five.

hb, et al - speaking of Lost, did anyone happen to pick up on the premier of "Heroes" last night? Started a little slow, but the show has got some potential. I may have found my Monday night TV spot (unless the Pats are on MNF). Love the Japanese guy and his Star Trek references.

I have Heroes on the DVR. Will watch soon.

You're the second person to say "Love the Japanese guy and his Star Trek references." to me today!

Hey Bob-

I think of it more like the hydra effect. You cut off one head, and two grow in its place. Since the world decided to stop killing civilians in wars (see: WW II), we're in the precarious position of trying to pick out those who would perpetrate violence against us from the general population. That's really, really hard to do. And because we aren't willing to simply stomp the entire population into submission anymore, but still are willing to accept "some" collateral civilian death (see: 10's of thousands of dead Iraqis and Afghanis), we basically only succeed in radicalizing the survivors. Thus, we kill Joe mistakenly trying to get to Mike, and Ed and Bill decide that those fuckers who killed Joe must die, and therefore join Mike's cause. Until the U.S. decides to simply say to hell with it and go flat-out killing everyone who stands in our way (never gonna happen), we're constrained in how we can wage war with terrorists.

So I think that the alternative to violence is investment. Jason made a great point when he spoke about how successful the US has been in integrating Muslim populations. The culture that is spawned by capitalism (Dancing with the Stars, Lost, American Idol, Coca-Cola, Mickie D's) is actually very effective in drawing people into to its numbing swirl. It's interesting: history has suggested that democracy doesn't create capitalism, but that it's the other way around. Take a look at China, and, for all its human rights defects and other problems, the general trend that has accompanied its movement toward a more capitalist economy has been one of increased rights and opportunities for its citizens. Sadly, we've fucked it up pretty royally in the Middle East.

Quick question for the assembled: Watching the NYY/TB game last night, I saw a feature on the Ted Williams Hitters Museum at Tropicana Field.

I need some help here: Why the fuck isn't The Splinter's museum in Fenway or in close proximity thereof?

Did Williams have a bad relationship with the Red Sox after his retirement?

Jason, I think it's there because the Trop always has more Red Sox fans in it than Rays fans.

I know Bush is universally hated (except when it comes to winning elections it seems) but, still, I think it's way too early to just assume everything going on is going to result in failure.

I'm old enough to recall when Reagan's policies were vilified and how the whole world was said to be totally fucked forever because of him. (I was among the chorus thinking such myself.)

Doesn't quite seem that way in hindsight, though, does it?

But, as Red Sox fans, I think the natural reaction to any problem is "oh my god where so fucking doomed!!!!"

People were saying that through most of 2004. Including the characters here.

And maybe this is why there hasn't been a Red Sox fan as President. Too reactionary? Too doom and gloom?


Too much Manny Ortez!

H.B. remember the "Nuclear Freeze" movement? They dispised Reagan more than any group hates Bush today. Yet how unbelievably misguided does that philosophy look now, in light of how the exact opposite of a freeze - a gigantic arms build-up - helped lead to the end of the Soviet Union.

Much like the Skankees, we defeated our arch-rivals by outspending them.

Me, all I'm looking for is some thoughtful commentary on world events that doesn't involve "Bush = Hitler" coming up in conversation (or any corollaries of that sentiment). Beyond that, I'm pretty flexible.

I agree that we need to invest more in the middle east. You don't hear a whole lot about terrorism in Dubai, do you? Not that they're bastions of free expression and individual rights, but they're doing better than other places where the rulers enforce the poverty level. Unfortunately, the corrupt regimes over there are the gatekeepers to capital investment and expenditure.

It always comes down to $ (or rubles or dinars.) Money can buy some semblance of pride and a lack thereof is one of the major issues with the middle east. Add zealotry to that and it is a scary mix.

You have a point, Bob. Ideas are few. I don't know how at this point you can go about introducing globalization concepts when even the folks who want to go over there, build things and try to get some enterprise up and running are continually mowed down.

Lostaholix Thursdays!!!!


More of the Korean Chic!!!!

diversity lovin' lc

crap, I meant chick...


[hb: the undersigned would really benefit from a "preview post" and spellcheek [sic] feature if you are going to go all modren on us]]


ISODE: It's the oil cartel thing that enables the corrupt regimes. Of course, their cynical use of religion as a means to control the masses makes it all possible.

You're right that Dubai's a great example of how investment in human capital pays off, at least in regards to peace and prosperity.

HB...the aggressive policy of the Bush administration may well not be the problem. But whether you support it or not, it isn't hard to recognize that there is a real failure to execute said policy that is creating the issue. The neocon ideologues fail to recognize room for difference in the opinion and actions of the conquered. As a result, post-war planning was a disaster mismanaged by the Pentagon, where the much more adequately equipped State department was shut out altogether. No...Bush and his cronies really are doing a poor job of it. Unfortunately, his loudest critics are a bunch of braying leftist asses themselves, who are as unable to recognize nuance in policy development as the neocons are on the right. We're plumb stuck in between incompetence and cynical, polarized politics from both sides right now. The only thing we seem to have going for us is a military, which, in spite of Rummy's every effort to emasculate it and mash its expertise, continues to field troops who themselves are doing an outstanding job.

I think my point still stands: It is impossible to judge history when you're in the middle of it.

Just as it's impossible to determine how the Red Sox season will end from one series in June.

Or how the "Theo era" will be perceived based on just looking at 2004 or just looking at 2006.

And, the fact is, Theo is our GM, and Bush is our Prez.

20 years from now we can look back and judge things better.

Wow. depressing lot of comments today on many different fronts. Bring on Lost.

This might be the greatest comment thread in the history of Soxaholix. Nice to know that there are some very well-thinking people who read this strip. Intelligent political argument FTW.

HB...point taken on judging history. But we're all in serious trouble if rational discussion and criticism of policy requires a 20 year moratorium.

Of course, history often judges the times differently than those in its midst. Then again, history is just as likely to repeat itself, especially when those creating policy haven't read theirs with particular care.

I think Dave puts his finger on the critical point. Lots of people disagreed with Reagan's policies, but agree or no, they were fairly effectively implemented from the word go. The debate was over the outcome. With W, we have the situation where not only do lots of people disagree with his approach, but it's difficult to find too many people who think his execution is anything other then execrable. h.b, I have to disagree at least in part. The Iraq war is both history and a current event due to its duration. It isn’t too soon to have analysis be valid.
I think you might have been a little harsh on da’beads up above too. This site oscillates between the characters acting like ‘themselves’ and acting as an outlet for things like your love of literature. I like the metafiction dimension that the transitions add (it’s part of why I haven’t missed a panel in years), but a casual reader can be forgiven for being unsure when Doug is speaking for himself.

Not saying one shouldn't have discourse or disagree or get up on soapboxes.

Just don't expect me to agree when it comes to judging actions that will take years to play out.

Example, When Clinton was about to sign the Welfare Reform Bill I had colleagues telling me, quite literally, that we'd be saying the poor dying in the streets, riots, etc, etc.

Yet that one turned out pretty good in hindsight, eh?

Also, I've been hearing about the coming eco-catastrophe since I got my first "Weekly Reader" in kindergarden back in the late 60s.

Then in the 70s we were "on the verge of running out of oil, now, tomorrow!!! Ohmyfuckinggod!"

But... we're still here, the world is going along fine... hell, they are even bringing back DDT these days.

I'm not saying the world is perfect or that you can't complain, just that I'll remain a skeptic on regarding all the doomsaying.

The characters tend to be manifestations of things in my head, but I don't always agree with them.

Doug, of course, is the conservative of the characters. While the others lean typically Massachusetts liberal (with Susan/Circle being the most left).

Now as for being too hard on "da’beads" up above, perhaps.

Yet isn't it funny how when this site did a week's worth of jokes at the expense of the dead Pope JP2, not a single person peeped up suggesting I was being over the top.

And there's lots of other examples where Christian beliefs (remember the "smite" strip?) have been openly mocked by the characters. But I don't recall a single comment suggesting taking offense.

Yet make a joke about the Moorish conquest of Andalusia, and, holy fuck, bring out the PC-police! Doug is being insensitive and vulgar.

Know what I'm saying?


No, not really. While there haven't been been riots, things aren't better. Things are, at best, the same just arranged differently. Many indicators point to things being worse. While unemployment is fairly low, that's really misleading. The fact that there haven't been class-based riots (and just not over that, but just in general, because, seriously, look around, think about and you have to figure it should've happened) is due to a lot of unique American factors.

And, out of curiousity, h.b., you really don't think that, for whatever reason, the earth's climate isn't getting warmer?

Yeah, Earth's climate appears to be getting warmer.

But here's where I'm a skeptic.
1) Is all of it caused by humans or some of it or what?
2) Can we do anything about it?
3) If we can, will doing something about it, will the remedy actually lead to something worse, not just with respect to climate but other areas as well (e.g., let's say the fix means more people, particularly 3rd world people go into povery or starve or whatever, because the world economy is crippled?)
4) Does it really matter?

And, please, please, please, don't waste any calories furiously typing a response to any of my questions posed above.

I'll still remain a skeptic. It's in my nature.

BTW each time I reveal a bit more of the "real me" and what my thoughts are on any given topic, the closer it moves this site to it's final end.

So it's best not to draw me out too much. :)

It is funny how people are sensitive about different issues. In general the "hush!" you get when discussing Islam seems particularly strange, especially considering that fundamentalist Islamic belief is the mantle of choice for this current threat. To me, most religions create institutionalized contempt for others, and worse yet, do so under a gauzy banner of love and tolerance. And this contempt is total: how can you respect someone whom you believe with certitude is destined for hell? Exactly as you say, HB: "We are a religion of peace. And if you say otherwise, we'll cut your fucking head off, infidel!"

Hey HB: I dare you to include a picture of Mohammed in your strip. Or maybe your "John Oates" is a clandestine rendition? What IS that red bag he's holding, anyway?

//I'm old enough to recall when Reagan's policies were vilified and how the whole world was said to be totally fucked forever because of him. (I was among the chorus thinking such myself.)

Doesn't quite seem that way in hindsight, though, does it?//

Considering the debt that Reagan saddled us with and as recent as June 2006 only 7% of Dems polled called Reagan the best president after WWII (while 56% of Repubs felt they could say so)...I'd say that it doesn't quite seem that he isn't still being villified for many of his decisions. He also provided half of the problems in the Middle East (of course, at the time he was doing it in the name of the Cold War, but the result is being felt today)...working with the mullahs of Iran, Saddam in Iraq, AIDS was all but addressed as a health crisis...

His acting skills were verbal Kool-aid and lots of people drank deep. It even rubbed off on our current president, but he doesn't have the charisma of Reagan to pat us on the head while cutting us off at the kneecaps.

"Religion,Politics and the Great Pumpkin"

I do. And I get the characters personalities too, but only because I've read the strip for so long. Getting to know the characters here is like getting to know the characters on Law and Order. It takes quite a while because the focus is rarely if ever on the character backstory.
As to the sensitivity of some to the last panel today, I do think that white characters from a traditionally Roman Catholic area skewering Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular is different then those same characters saying the same things about a different culture or religion. The tone of the comments just comes across differently.

I think one of the gulfs the separates us isn't so much one of political belief etc but one of optimism/pessimism.

I mean Kaz and Ryan have both dug up examples of how things are really, really bad.


But my gosh, the world we are living in today, September 26, 2006 is better than the one I lived in in Sept 1996, and quite a bit better than the one I lived in in Sept 1986 and one fuck of a whole lot better than the one I lived in in Sept 1976.

And I'm willing to bet the world 10 years from now will be better my most measures. Not for everyone, no. But in general? Science? Medicine? Tech? Better better better.

So it's tought for me to take all this "we are all doomed" kind of talk seriously.

Especially from Red Sox fans!

Sometimes I wonder if really I'm not supposed to be a Red Sox fan because, actually, I'm an optimist about most things 99% of the time. (I must confess I went off the edge when Theo resigned last year.)

With that said, there's nothing JFK did that sunk the world, nothing LBJ did, nothing Nixon, nothing Carter, nothing Reagan blah blah blah and highly unlikely Bush2 is going to be the one the finally fucks things up so badly.

And we could go all the way back to the Founders on that and before them the Kings of England and before them... well you get the picture.

Life persists. And gets better not worse.

BTW I had a character of Mohammed all ready to go during the "cartoon scandal" but I mentioned it to my wife and she freaked out and promised me not to do it. (She was present as a kid in Iran during the revolution that deposed the Shah, so she's somewhat skittish about threats from guys in beards with swords.)

Had I been single, I'm pretty sure I would have.

So, yeah, this site was silenced by fear.

Attempt to douse the flaming. This whole religion and violence thing is probably imminently on my mind these days as I have been wholly engrossed in reading the works of Sam Harris ... that is, whenever I haven't been reading The Soxaholix:


Interesting stuff. Not really sure I agree with everything he says. But, as a the saying goes, "I might not agree with everything you think or say, sir, but I will fight to the death to defend your right as a free person to think and say them."

It should be noted that I am wholly and utterly against any kind of violence...unless, of course, it involves kicking A.Fraud's pretty white teeth in through his eerily blue lips. He's just so damn PRETTY that I can't stand him! Yeah...that must be it!!

Actually I absolutely agree, h.b. As long as politicians don't screw up our ability to achieve the scientific innovations that America pretty much globally dominate, the politics pretty much are irrelevant for quality of life (then again, ask Cindy Sheehan how her quality of life is since GW Bush took office).

I don't allow my optimism or pessimism to overextend on any of these things. In other words, I'm not dismal or discouraged by the national debt from Reagan any more than I am encouraged by all of the ways we're living in a gifted age of communication rising to our ability to even discuss this on this blog that didn't exist even 20 years ago. The caveat is that 1986 discourse over current events (with deference to historical fact) got us to today just as today's discourse will get us to tomorrow's brighter day.

If we didn't talk about what it would take to trade Manny and how we're going to improve our pitching before next season, then we arrive in April with the same array of players that landed us in our current situation (and if anyone else took the initiative to have these discussions for their teams, then we're actually a sight worse). Optimism for a better tomorrow doesn't solve anything even if you feel better about trying to get there just as much as pessimism because of where we've been doesn't solve it either and you're just sad that you're still in the same rut.

I just propose that we can be optimistic about our future because we're pessimistic about our past/present and expect that the appropriate changes will alleviate our problems. Well, at least I am.

Kaz, is the phrase "pessimism today is the only way to be optimistic about tomorrow" written down somewhere? Pretty good line.

interesting comments section

seems to me "liberals" saying - whatever bush says/wants to do it is wrong

but i don't hear a thing about how they want to deal with a bunch of people who are real clear about wanting to kill people who are not moslem

it also seem to me that "liberal" = anti-christian

which is a problem

mind you i am not real too happy bout the "conservatives" making up all them lies about WMD so they could get into iraq and make money or whatever their real agenda is

and hart, you right about things here in america are a LOT better then they were 30 years ago. fer SHER



Historical progress isn't always a straight line and the line isn't always the same with respect to geography and demographics. Life for most Americans was probably better in 1925 than 1935. Likewise with 1853 than 1863. There are, too, more drastic backslides. Life for the average European was probably far better in 1 AD than in 1200 or 1350 AD. Life for the average Red Sox fan was better 18 months ago.

I would say that life in America was probably better in 1996 than it is today. Sure, there's been quite a few technological advances that I wouldn't give back. But people were making more money in absolute dollars. People felt safer.

What would my response to the terrorists be? You hunt down the terrorists and kill them but without all of the extra-curricular hoo-ha that has gone on. USA Patriot Act? Don't need it. Illegal wiretapping? Don't need it. Invading Iraq? Clearly don't need it. Torture? Don't need it. Secret prisons? Don't need them. Just imagine if the 135,000 troops in Iraq were hunting for Osama et al. Sure, life for the average Iraqi might be worse, but the general tenor of conversation seems to indicate that wouldn't bother most of you.

On a disturbing note (pardon the pun):


"it also seem to me that "liberal" = anti-christian

which is a problem"

Lisa, what are you talking about? I know you ramble on in general, and off topic. But where exactly did this come from?

"Yesterday Pope Benedict was severely criticized for his anti-Muslim remarks by 1970's singer Cat Stevens. So far, no word yet from Dan Fogelberg." --Conan O'Brien

And one final point - the most immutable truth of today's blog comes from Jim re: lisa gray's, er, "post"...


You nailed it, brother.

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