January 09, 2004

Harkin Joins Losers for Dean

Wow. Will nothing stop this parade of political losers?

All we need now is for Bob Dole to switch parties.

"... one candidate rose to the top as our best shot to beat George W. Bush and to give Americans the opportunity to take our country back," Harkin told supporters in Des Moines, Iowa.

Of course, that's what he said in '92 about his own stellar candidacy to unseat Bush 41. You have to admire his political instincts.

Note: Dean hailed Harkin's decision, referring to the Iowan as a "street fighter." What I think he means is that Harkin is the same kind of nasty piece campaigner as Dean. According to this media analysis of press coverage in the '92 campaign: "Harkin faced criticism in February that he was a negative campaigner." The Ottumwa Courier noted during Harkin's last Senate campaign (while endorsing his Republican opponent): "Now that negative campaigning is a dirty word with voters, Harkin has done himself a disservice by launching his negative pre-emptive strike on Ganske.  Negative attacks have been a staple of Harkin's campaigns and mars his ability to highlight his positive initiatives."

So if Dean values street-fighting, it's no wonder all the Republicans want Dean to get the nomination. They know his big mouth and his nasty nature will lead to his meltdown by October.

Posted by campbell at 05:55 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 08, 2004

Life Imitates Monty Python

A team of archaeologists in Scotland have spent several months excavating a "significant" ancient Viking site, only to have to admit that it turned out to be a 1940s-era patio.

Mr Speirs admitted that his team mistakenly ignored the finds of a World War II child's gas mask and old television remote in their hunt for Viking evidence.

Well, you would have had to, wouldn't you?

Anyway, next week on Discovery: Ancient Bar-B-Q Pits of the Hebrides.

Posted by campbell at 09:49 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 06, 2004

Tartan Tough

Here's the obit for Ben Coutts, a highlander who died in December at 87.

Severely injured at Tobruk, his hospital ship was bombed. After a year in hospital in Egypt, he was sent home on the liner Laconia. He survived the torpedoeing of that ship (in which 2000 died). After 5 days on a liferaft, he was taken onboard a Vichy French ship and interned at Casablanca.

Later, while being transferred to France, the French ship he was then on was itself torpedoed. Luckily, that ship had strayed into an Allied armada who saved him and sent him to England.

Coutts went on to have his face rebuilt, became a radio broadcaster, wrote 5 books, married twice and got an MBE.

The Scotsman further notes that Coutts managed to escape from the Laconia onto a raft with two bottles of Johnnie Walker from the ship's bar.

Now, that's a highlander.

Posted by campbell at 11:50 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

The Real "L" Word

At least some of my fellow Democrats aren't afraid of the "L" word anymore. I mean the other "L" word, of course.

Dean Endorsers:

Bill Bradley. Loser. (Lost to Al Gore in the 2000 primaries.)

George McGovern. Loser. (Lost to Richard Nixon in the 1972 election.)

Al Gore. Loser. (Perhaps the biggest loser of all time.)

Do we detect a pattern here?

Oh yes, and Jimmy Carter half-endorsed Dean. Half-Loser. (Won one in 1976, lost one to Reagan in 1980.)

Dean looks like a shoo-in with the Losers vote.

Posted by campbell at 10:43 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Flashbacks to my misspent youth

I worked briefly for George McGovern in Westchester in 1972, although I never inhaled.

This comment in the Sunday Times has got to be a plant from one of Dean's rivals:

McGovern recently said that he is a big fan of Howard Dean, whose campaign reminds him very much of his own.

Cool. We all remember what a good job President McGovern did, don't we?

Remember: Don't Drink the Kool-Aid!

Posted by campbell at 01:33 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 05, 2004

Johnny Lend-Me-Thirty and udder Nooyawkahs.

The Times today made this Runyonesque contribution to the lore of New York and the mob:

Everyone on Pleasant Avenue had a nickname that usually stuck till death. (Except for Johnny Lend-Me-Twenty, whose nickname changed over the decades with inflation. Now he's Johnny Lend-Me-Thirty.)

Some guys were named after body parts: Alfred Ears, Gary High-Eye, Vinnie and Frankie Head (no relation), Frankie Nose and Danny Legs, for example. Others were named for food: Charlie Cream Cheese, Freddy Eggs, Tommy Salami (currently a busboy at Rao's), Joe Olive and Mary Knish. Still others were named for animals: Jimmy the Cat, Vito the Bat, Johnny Fox and Gary the Lamb. Rats? They never lasted long on Pleasant Avenue.

And sometimes the nickname was all there was. An elderly guy named Waffles was taken one day to the hospital, but when his lifelong friends tried visiting, they could not find his room because none of them knew his real name. "If you didn't have a nickname, no one knew who you were," said Joseph Camerlingo, 77, a retired doorman.

Everyone knew Angelo Cheesecake, a mob soldier. He is dead now, however, and his son, Joey Cupcake, is in prison.

Kinda makes me hungry. Anyway, for those from out of town, Pleasant Avenue is a timewarp zone between 114th and 120th on the far east side of Manhattan. Rao's makes our favorite spaghetti sauce.

Posted by campbell at 11:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack