Tag Archives: Woody Allen

If the Republican Party were a person, Dorothy Parker would slap his face, both of them.

10 Feb

 

latino-obama-sign

Consider the case of the young man who hates his uncle and has always treated him dastardly. One day the uncle reveals that by living poor he was able to accumulated a small fortune. The young nephew then begins to shower the old man with kindness and attention.

For the uncle, it is easy to see that the nephew is a disingenuous louse. The real insult, however, is that the young man thought the uncle could be fooled.

The young man reminds me of the Republican Party.

Here is a party that, for the most part, staked out a very tough position against amnesty or general kindness for 11 million people living and mostly working in the United States without the legal right to do. It was a legitimate position, although it is one I considered unwise.

When President Obama was re-elected after winning 80 percent of the minority and ethnic vote, the Republican Party realized that the poor uncle they didn’t care much for was actually rich.

Now they want to be friends. Now they want legislation to assist the 11 million. Now they want those votes.

And, I guess, they don’t think the Hispanic population is intelligent enough or aware enough to see the hypocrisy.

That’s the real zinger.

Gov. Bob McDonnell, a Republican from Virginia, thinks the GOP can get those votes if it just changes its tone. That’s what reporter Thomas Fitzgerald wrote today in the Inquirer. Tone, rather than the choice of whom you truly represent in Congress, is what’s important.

Reality is always second to image.

When someone says, “People want to know we’re like them”  (which Republican Congressman Scott Perry said this weekend) it usually means “We’re not like them.” When someone says, “We can win the presidency. … We don’t need to fix the laws to make that happen (which Pennsylvania party chairman Rob Gleason said), it usually means they ARE trying to win the presidency by rigging the system.

A good rule in politics is to exercise caution and maintain skepticism.

I’m very curious to see if the GOP efforts to gain Hispanic support will work. Woody Allen once said that the lion will one day lie down with the lamb, but the lamb won’t get any sleep. That’s the kind of alliance this speaks of.

By Lanny Morgnanesi

Jews and Muslims together; vet neglect; the easy life in Greece

14 Jul

A small assortment of items:

I discovered a rare, interesting and encouraging case of Jews and Muslims uniting. Both are working together against a regional court ruling in Germany that outlaws circumcision, equating it with bodily harm, a criminal act.

While the court ruled in a regional case with only regional authority, hospitals across Germany are reacting by banning the procedure.

Jews and Muslims, who circumcise their male children, see this as an attack on religion and have found common ground.

From the New York Times:

            “The often very aggressive prejudice against religion as backward, irrational and opposed to science is increasingly defining popular opinion,” said Michael Bongardt, a professor of ethics from Berlin’s Free University who added that the ruling reflected a profound lack of understanding in modern Germany for religious belief.

 

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Prolonged wars drain the treasury because killing is expensive. Equally expensive, with no end date, is the post-war cost of curing – and the difficulty of actually doing an effective job.

In June Bloomberg Businessweek  reported that:

  • 1.3 million disability cases were filed with the Veterans Administration in 2011, a 48 percent increase from 2008.
  • 905,000 cases are awaiting action.
  • 14,320  VA employees must handle the load.

There really is nothing new in this. Since the Revolutionary War, it has become routine for the government to abandon soldiers once they no longer are needed.

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Eating ice cream with a Greek national, I learned a little more about why that nation and its economy cannot climb out of its fiscal swamp. The Greeks just aren’t working very hard, especially in the summer.

Perhaps we all knew this, or at least thought it. But my friend made it clearer, telling me how the Greeks take a fairly long siesta after a hearty and leisurely lunch (the day’s main meal). They nap from 2:30 p.m. until 6 p.m., when they return to work.

A light dinner generally is eaten around 10.

In the summer heat, however, only the merchants who service tourists go back to work after the nap.

Once I recovered from the realization that Greece is basically a part-time nation, I looked at my friend – a U.S. resident undergoing a great deal of stress from multiple layoffs in her family – and asked, “How in God’s name can you leave a place like that?”

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Many clever lines in Woody Allen’s new movie, To Rome with Love.

Here is a rough paraphrase of one. It’s Woody’s character, a father speaking against his daughter’s new boyfriend, a left-wing Italian lawyer who he thinks is a communist.

“I understand being a leftist. I was a leftist when I was young. But I was never a Communist. Never. I couldn’t share a bathroom.”

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