Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Corruption As Usual

Why I'm a Cynic

"Laws? We don't need no steenkin' laws!"
One of the alleged benefits of cynicism is that one is supposedly impervious to disappointment. My own cynicism must not be absolute, then, because I was profoundly disappointed this morning when FBI Director James Comey held an unprecedented press conference to announce that the FBI was recommending against criminal charges being filed against black-eyed skank Hillary Clinton over her illegal private server.

"You're puny laws mean nothing to me, peasants."
House Speaker Paul Ryan said that Comey's announcement "defies explanation," which is politician-speak. He just doesn't want to give the explanation out loud.

The fix was in, from the beginning, and there was never any serious chance of charges being brought. The "investigation" (which Comey himself said confirmed every claim her critics made about her behavior, and further confirmed that she's been lying through her teeth about it all along) was pure theater designed to gull the rubes into thinking the rule of law still exists.

And the worst part of that is the way the progressive mainstream media (but I repeat myself) will spin this as Hillary being "cleared." That kind of spin is already up and running, and will morph into the Conventional Wisdom in a matter of days. After that, we're ready for the final stage of every Clinton scandal, where we're informed that it is time to "move on," just like she told us to do after a scathing report on her Benghazi behavior was released a couple of weeks ago.

By far the most galling aspect of the Comey statement is its focus on "intent," which as it happens is utterly irrelevant to the statutes Clinton violated. But even if you grant that intent is relevant, how can you possibly absolve her? Everything about that server, from its mere existence to the way it was used, was at her direction, as a way of avoiding Freedom of Information Act inquiries and congressional oversight of her conduct as Secretary of State. Add to that her criminal destruction of tens of thousands of subpoenaed emails and...well, I guess if you're an important enough person in this country the laws simply don't apply to you.

"You should calm down, maybe write about the Royals' latest win instead...oh, wait..."

You're not funny...

Cruise Update

My best friend Skip and his wife Elaine spent the 4th of July at sea, making their way from Iceland
to Greenland, but of course there was a shipboard party to mark the occasion...

Technically, today is a "sea day" also since they're cruising up Prince Christian Sound,
a fjord that is roughly 60 miles long with some spectacular views of Greenland's famous glaciers...

Entrance to Prince Christian Sound

Skip himself sent me a couple of pics from his iPhone this morning...

"Wow! That white thing is an iceberg, right?"

That is correct...they break off from nearby glaciers every so often, a process known as ice calving...

Bug Bite Season

From the delightfully off-kilter webcomic xkcd, by Randall Munroe, which you should read every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, as I do.

Until Next Time...

As I have noted in this space on many occasions, there really isn't much rhyme or reason to explain what makes one musical artist or group successful and another one not. I gave up on trying to make sense of such things a long time ago. Every so often an artist or band comes along and just catches the public's fancy for no special reason. They often disappear just as quickly.

Hootie & the Blowfish had been around for nearly a decade before catching lightning in a bottle, but when they did they caught it to a fare-thee-well.

On July 5, 1994 the band exploded onto the airwaves with the release of their debut album, Cracked Rear View. It spent a total of eight weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart in 1995, non-consecutively, reaching the top spot five different times. It was the biggest-selling album of 1995, and to date it has received 16 platinum certifications by RIAA.

The band enjoyed some subsequent success, including a second No. 1 album, but nothing remotely like the smash that was Cracked Rear View.

Of the four charting singles from the album, my favorite was "Let Her Cry," a poignant song about loving someone who is self-destructive. For some reason that song struck a chord with me. It received the Best Pop Performance Grammy Award in 1996.

Today's send-off is the official music video for the song, still evocative (translation: I get choked up) after more than two decades. Enjoy...

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