Friday, March 29, 2013

"That's Just What Jesus Said"



I suppose it's fitting on Good Friday I'm near death:
Head is throbbing, throat is sore, I cannot catch my breath.
Hopefully, by Easter, I'll be up and on the mend,
But this really sucks...  Which is what Jesus said, my friend.


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Massachusetts Senate Debates

Massachusetts Senate debate 32713.jpg
R.D. Sahl moderated the 2 debates last night. He did a great job.  (Photo/Steve Senne/AP)

Massachusetts has itself an open Senate seat
Now that Kerry's left the Hill and moved up to C Street.
Each side got an half an hour; finished up by 8.

R.D. Sahl was very good, although he sounded hoarse.
Started with the GOP - all moderates, of course.
Here in Massachusetts.) They said DOMA was unfair.

Winslow, Gomez, Sullivan: don't like the A.C.A.
Said that Massachusetts doesn't need it anyway.
Gomez lacks experience and Sullivan's polite...
Thought Dan Winslow won in the debate I heard last night.

Next up were our Democrats from Congress; Lynch and Markey.
Ed was very statesman-like and Steve a little snarky.
I like Stephen Lynch a lot - he does a decent job -
And I know that Markey may appear to be a snob

But, with more than 30 years experience, it's he
Out of all the candidates on stage (it seemed to me)
Who was senatorial; the other men were not.
Up against Ed Markey, Winslow wouldn't stand a shot.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Prop 8 and DOMA and SCOTUS. Oh My!


Supreme Court considers gay marriage: The scene and key players
(Photo/Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)


Proposition 8 and DOMA; in our highest Court.
Won't know until June which sides the Justices support.
Trying to predict it from the questions that they ask,
Trying to detect opinions they attempt to mask,

Keeps the pundits happy 'cause they get to talk about it.
Does it offer any clues on how they'll rule? I doubt it.
The Supremes  could keep it narrow; leave it to the States.
Let the voters get to choose how people pick their mates.

Could decide Prop 8's a case they shouldn't even hear;
That Defense of Marriage (which conservatives hold dear)
Doesn't meet the standards, thus avoiding sweeping change.
But, like Justice Kagan, I agree it's pretty strange;

How can you say marriages are just for making kids?
Or that same sex marriage means your marriage hits the skids?
Love is love and people are just people and no law
Should presume to dictate that you be a ma and pa.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Dear Secretary Kerry... Sincere Sympathies on Your Dream Job

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry...  Poor bastard.

Secretary Kerry has his work cut out for him;
Situation in the Middle East is pretty grim.
Civil war in Syria; the circumstances dire.
Innocent civilians getting caught in the crossfire.

Plus 2 million refugees have packed their things and fled.
Assad's neighbors have to try and keep those people fed.
War's been dragging on for 2 years now; no end in sight.
The United States stayed on the sidelines of the fight.

Now - so rumor has it - CIA is helping out;
Shipping arms to rebels so the battle's not a rout.
Trying hard to pick and choose who's gonna get the guns
In a region that's known warfare since Attila's Huns.

Egypt's on the brink of a collapse...  They're out of cash.
Thus, their fragile government may hit a wall and smash.
Even with intentions that are pure as driven snow,
Morsi's in a bind if the economy won't grow.

And, of course, there's Israel and Palestine, as well.
You call that the Holy Land?  It's more akin to Hell.
It's no wonder Hillary decided that she'd quit;
Let poor Secretary Kerry try to deal with it.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Across the Pond - Iraq: Lessons Learned

(Photo/Scott Nelson/Getty Images)

10 years after Shock and Awe and here is what we've learned,
Lessons that our military's lives and limbs have earned:
Don't invade until you've finished in Afghanistan.
If you do - don't throw away your post-invasion plan.

Be concerned when someone like Don Rumsfeld starts to smirk.
Don't disband their military; put those men to work.
Be aware that, sometimes, other people might have lied.
Don't install a government because they take your side.

Don't expect to change a culture that is not your own
Just because you get their brutal tyrant overthrown.
Don't suppose the war is over once that tyrant's caught.
Don't proclaim your mission is accomplished when it's not.

Lessons we have yet to learn are: how to walk away,
Where to find the billions that we're gonna have to pay,
Where those weapons of destruction were and where they went...
Seems to me those billions could have been more wisely spent.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Dear NRA... There's a New Sheriff in Town

gabrielle giffords michael bloomberg
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Gabby Giffords, and Mark Kelly are gambling that they can make a change.

Which is what a semi-automatic weapon's for.
Won't restrict the magazines to 15 rounds or less.
Even background checks have caused Conservatives distress.

Claim that it's a registry so we'll know where to start
When we come to pry their guns and cold, dead hands apart.
NRA is threatening to "throw the bastards out."
In the past it's been the only group that's wielded clout.

They should know, another sheriff just rode into to town
And he's got the cash to back the bets that he lays down.
Lately, he and other groups have said they plan to spend
Money on elections and the message that they'd send:

Is that the majority, according to the polls,
Want to see those 3 reforms, want help for tortured souls,
Don't want politicians' specious arguments on rights...
Want them to address concerns that keep us up at nights.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Across the Pond - Dear Israel...

Nic6200687
(Photo/Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty)

He and Netanyahu haven't had the chance to speak
Since their re-elections. Their relationship was tense;
Netanyahu thinks we haven't sprung to his defense.

President Obama is a man who keeps his word.
So - although I doubt that Netanyahu's reassured -
When he says he has your back then you can just relax...
Israel has allies if an enemy attacks.

Just because we want to give the sanctions time to work
Doesn't mean Iran's a situation that we'll shirk.
Just because we think Mahmoud Abbas has got a point
Netanyahu shouldn't get his nose all out of joint.

If some nation should attack, it's choosing suicide.
We gave you the Iron Dome and - mostly - take your side.
What else do Israelis want the President to say
That he didn't say to you, already, yesterday?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Across the Pond - North Korea, China, and Russia

Kim Jong-un
Kim Jong-un looks south.  (Photo/AP)

Kim Jong-un is making threats again...  The guy is nuts.
Doesn't seem to realize, despite the budget cuts,
We can always find the funds to fight if we're attacked.
Now his ties to Russia and the Chinese may have cracked.

It makes countries nervous when a neighbor rocks the boat.
North Korea's neighbors have a U.N. Council vote.
They've agreed to sanctions since the Hermit Kingdom has
Proved its newest leader is a suicidal spaz.

I bet Putin's wishing Kim Jong-un would shut his mouth;
Let the Chinese deal with him for now.  They keep him fed;
Propped his dad and grandpa up and look where that has led.

Now they have a lunatic who's slipping off his leash.
Can't believe they didn't see this problem coming.  Sheesh!
Not as if the family tree could give them cause for hopes;
If you're planting cabbage, you get cabbages...  You dopes.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Fire the Groundhog


Embedded image permalink
(Photo/@QBurgh-Q92.9FM, Pittsburgh)

Why did I believe something a stupid groundhog said?
I looked out my window; now I'm going back to bed.
Spring may start tomorrow but, from everything I see

Monday, March 18, 2013

Here We Go Again

(Photo/My.Opera.com)

Wish that I could warn my tulips and my daffodils
Foot of snow is on the the way...  I wonder if it kills
Crocuses and other flowers that began to peep
Tender shoots above the ground? They should go back to sleep.

That is what I plan to do with Winter hanging on.
It could be July before this wretched snow is gone.
I like snow for Christmas.  After that, I think it should
Just fall in the mountains so the skiing will be good.

I am more than ready for this Winter to be through...
Calendar says Spring but Mother Nature is a shrew.
Easter Bunny ought to ask to borrow Santa's sleigh
'cause, in Massachusetts, we'll be digging out 'til May.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Plum Island


http://bostonherald.com/sites/default/files/media/2013/02/08/020813nemopw006.jpg


Summers on Plum Island; I was young - without a care.
Just went back to see the place; it almost wasn't there.
Back, when I was just a girl, we'd hit the beach at dawn...
That was 30 years ago and now that beach is gone.

I grew up on 53rd; our house was on the beach.
When we ran, we kids were out of breath before we'd reach
Sand that would be cool enough to soothe our burning feet;
Plunging into freezing water...  More akin to sleet.

Now our house is on a cliff; our neighbor's in the sea.
Storms have made my childhood beach a fading memory.
As Plum Island drifts away and more homes hit the drink
Residents want action, but it's harder than you'd think.

Places like Plum Island (they're called Barriers) are sand.
Back when people bought their homes they didn't understand
That they couldn't stop the sea from moving sand around,
And their lovely summer homes were built on shifting ground.

Only thing that holds the place together is the grass
So, like everything in life, the island, too, shall pass.
Ocean level's rising and, with storms a certainty,
There is not a lot that can be done to stop the sea.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Prayer for Pope Francis

Pope Francis greets the crowds in Saint Peter's Square. (Photo/The Telegraph)

Cardinal Bergoglio's become the newest Pope.
Wishing him the best of luck as he attempts to cope
With the sordid scandals that the church still has to face:
Searching for solutions to the priesthood's fall from grace,

Dealing with the Vatileaks and Curia's control...
It's enough to test the fortitude of any soul.
Francis is a Jesuit; the first to be the Pope...
Having met some Jesuits, I know he's not a dope.

Argentina breeds them tough; I'm sure that he'll do fine
(Or else, like his predecessor, he can just resign.)
There is speculation that the choosing of his name
Means that Francis plans to make reforming things his aim;

Focusing on poverty, though still conservative,
Cardinals have made a choice the faithful have to live.
He has asked that people pray for him; and so I will...
Even a lapsed Catholic will never lose that skill.

The New England Patriots - Dear Mr. Kraft...

End of an era.  (Photo/USA Today)

Couldn't cough an extra couple million up for Wes,
Even after Brady just agreed to sign for less?
2 years for 12 million doesn't seem a lot to ask
For a guy we stuck with every single, thankless task.

Now it's Peyton Manning who has Welker on his team?
I am feeling bad enough about this I could scream.
I'm not mad at Wes, although I know that some fans are;
Saying only Brady could make Welker such a star...

Maybe so, but Peyton Manning's also pretty good.
(83 is moving to the Denver neighborhood.)
Brady's getting Amendola, who is always hurt...
Now what am I gonna do with my Wes Welker shirt?

I suppose those are the Rockies in the background...  What? The White Mountains weren't good enough?

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Lean In Ladies

A new feminist manifesto?


Lean In ladies, here's the scoop on Sheryl Sandberg's book;
It is worth your while to buy the thing and have a look.
Critics say, because she's rich, she doesn't understand
What it's like for women who don't make a hundred grand.

Maybe so, and yet the woman makes a valid point.
Doesn't help the cause to get our noses out of joint.
Sandberg says the problems - whether chicken or the egg -
Need to be examined.  She set off a powder keg.

Women do not like to ask for things; it makes us tense...
Too afraid that someone else might, somehow, take offense.
Trained to think of family first; career in second place,
Fear it's not polite to win and, therefore, throw the race.

Sandberg says that data show our fears are often right;
No-one likes a pushy broad in charge of oversight.
Thus, we do not take the risk to fight for equal pay.
Women choose the mommy track and start to fall away.

So she's launched Leanin.org; a platform on the web.
It's a place where Sandberg hopes we can reverse the ebb.
Yes, she's rich and lucky but let's give the girl a break.
I think that ignoring her would be a huge mistake.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

President Obama's Schmooze Offensive

President Obama picked up the tab at a recent dinner with the GOP. (Photo/Washington Post)

President Obama has been schmoozing it of late;
He and 12 Republicans just had a dinner date;
Had lunch with Paul Ryan to talk budget policy,
Even though the men all differ philosophically

With their views on government and what it ought to do...
Still, he's made an effort which, I think, is overdue.
When you're playing politics sometimes you have to schmooze.
That is how the deals get done; if not, you're gonna lose.

There have been some other signs the ice is growing cracks;
That the moderates will start to guard each other's backs.
Hope that this No Labels movement really catches on
Before any chance to be bi-partisan is gone.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Across the Pond - Afghanistan: The Karzai Conspiracy Theory


http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/01375/HamidKarzai_1375402c.jpg
Afghan President Hamid Karzai is pointing fingers. (Photo/Telegraph.Co.UK)

Karzai said the U.S. plays an underhanded role;
Working with the Taliban (behind the grassy knoll?)
Offering assistance to extremists 'cause our plan
Is to make them beg us to stay in Afghanistan.

Karzai thinks in areas (as much as 51?)
His men would already have the bad guys on the run
If it weren't for secret plans to make police look bad.
Recently he told the Afghans they were being had.

Maybe I am crazy but I don't believe a word.
It's the most ridiculous conspiracy I've heard.
They were, once, strategically important...  Times have changed.
Nowadays, 'most anywhere's more easily arranged.

Maybe if Chuck Hagel had been killed, the way they tried,
Karzai would believe that NATO leaders haven't lied.
Taliban is no-one's friend and, lest Karzai's forgot,
There's a lot of  U.S. forces out there getting shot.

Friday, March 08, 2013

Birthday Season

Happy 75th Birthday Mom...  I hope I got your genes.

This is birthday season; we'll be celebrating 4.
We've already had 2 parties - Sunday there's 1 more.
Last night was my mother's; she turned 70 + 5.
(We are very lucky; she's continuing to thrive.)

Dad's was here last weekend and my sister's party's next.
That one is at her house because everyone suspects
That I don't enjoy the fact the party's always here;
Think I'm lying saying it's my favorite time of year.

All I have to do is cook a meal and bake the cake.
While my sisters do the cleaning up, I take a break.
I enjoy the cooking part...  I really hate to clean,
But my sisters are the best at that I've ever seen.

One is great at decorating, one at mixing drinks.
I have much more fun at these than any of them thinks.
Plus, my house is cleaner than it was before they came.
Going to my sister's home will not feel quite the same.

The other 2 March birthday girls (and a very close approximation of my Dad.)

Thursday, March 07, 2013

The 113th Congress - Mr. Paul Goes To Washington



Rand Paul went to Washington and held the Senate floor...
Spoke for almost 13 hours...  Bet his throat is sore.
'though I mostly think that Paul is wrong; this time he's right,
And I'd like to thank the man for taking up the fight.

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

In Memoriam - Hugo Chavez (1954 - 2013)


Hugo Chavez died and Venezuela's blaming us.
Their new, acting-President is kicking up a fuss;
Said we gave him cancer - that we wanted him to die...
'though he was theatrical, I kinda liked the guy.

I'm in Massachusetts where we call on Joe-4-Oil.
Hugo Chavez, with the help of Venezuelan's toil,
Sent the people here (who can't afford to pay for gas)
Oil for free - which tells me he's not such a horse's ass.

Sadly, he has left his nation with a growing mess.
Government of 1 won't work when you're that person less.
Cult of personality is not the way to rule...
One thing I will say for him; he was nobody's tool.

'though I did not like the leaders he considered friends
I cannot forget the oil supplies he always sends.
Nothing's ever black or white, but every shade of gray.
So, for Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, let us pray.

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Across the Pond - Basketball Diplomacy

Ambassador Extraordinaire Dennis "The Worm"  Rodman? (Photo/People)

'though no-one's confirmed him as Ambassador, I heard
With its leader, Kim Jong-un.  They watched some basketball.
Rodman says that we don't understand the guy at all.

Kim Jong-un is "humble" and a "really awesome guy."
Rodman says he's sure of that, and why would Dennis lie?
Says the people love their leader; that's why they parade.
Can't imagine that the North Koreans are afraid...

After all, what's there to fear? (Except for prison camps,
Or the missile tests that they're conducting... Little scamps.
Nuclear explosions and a multitude of threats.)
Rodman says he's peaceful; that's as solid as it gets.

Let's give a portfolio to Dennis Rodman, fast.
Who knows how much longer this diplomacy will last?
Maybe get a pick-up game together.  Putin would;
And I bet Obama could take Kim Jong-un...  He's good.

Monday, March 04, 2013

Wall St. and Sequestration

(Photo/CBS News)

 Sequestration's in effect and Wall St. doesn't care;
Dow is up as its investors look to grab a share
Of the only game that offers any dividends.
Everyday realities not linked to market trends.

Wall St. doesn't really care about the moms and pops.
It does not reflect the fact we're laying off some cops.
Doesn't care (for now, at least) if education stinks;
Isn't held responsible for what the voter thinks.

Looks like Wall St. has concluded; Congress may be broke,
But it doesn't matter if the 2 sides haven't spoke.
Industries just need to know; What will the future bring?
Now they've learned - they can't count on The Hill for anything.

There is no uncertainty in that; it's very clear
Washington will not address the problems we have here...
Here where we the people live and watch in disbelief
As the Congress gets their checks and cancels storm relief.

Friday, March 01, 2013

Not A Prayer

pope benedict xvi, resign, green pope, vatican, catholic, sustainable ...
Benedict XVI has left the building...  Sort of.


Catholics are leaderless; they're searching for a Pope,
Giving some parishioners a modicum of hope
That the Church will modernize...  I don't think there's a prayer
Cardinals have any plans to change pastoral care.

Nuns will stay "subservient"; their ordination's out.
Church would never let a woman wield that kind of clout.
So, despite the many scandals it has covered up

Don't believe the Vatican is ever gonna change.
(I think it's the celibacy; makes your world view strange.)
'though I'm sure the next Pope is a fine, upstanding guy
I don't think reformers ought to get their hopes too high.