I now pronounce you President and Presided.

And then I go and spoil it all, by saying something stupid like faithfully.

In case you’re not aware of the lunacy, Chief Justice Roberts misplaced an adverb and swapped a preposition while administering the oath of office last week. Surprisingly enough, Satan has not risen from the depths of hell ushering in an new era of unspeakable misery and despair. In fact, he’s been looking rather sickly lately.

I followed this story with as much fascination and incredulity as the next guy, actually being surprised by the level of sanity present in most of the news coverage. Ignoring for a second that the sanest thing to do would have been to commit suicide on air after being told that this was a story that be should reported. I forget the anchor in question, but after the segment on this “scandal”, he editorialized, saying basically that of course Barack Obama is President adding that the oath is not a spell from a Harry Potter novel. The comparison, while apt, is not pointed enough.

This is not magical thinking, this is religious thinking.1 Well, really this is just dangerous, antiquated, backwards thinking.2

The conceit of rule by divine right seems to die hard. I get it. If you believe in a god(s), it’s tempting to think s/he/it/they approve of your choice in your leaders. So it’s hard not to think of our presidents as kings. Frankly I think Barack Obama would make a pretty decent king, but this is not medieval Europe and John Roberts is not the Pope. Jesse Jackson is, however, still the Emperor of black people.

But it makes sense that there are plenty of people out there who think it’s the oath and not the votes that make a (wo)man president. Well those people are in all kinds of luck.

You know what time it is kids?

Hypotetical Time!!!

Let’s say I had access to hi-tech futuristic spy gear.

Right as Barack Obama took his last non-presidential leak, I ambush him and take his place. Masquerading as still President-elect Obama, and waiting until the oath is completed, I rip off my mask. Would I be president?

Remember, there’s no love lost between Roberts and Obama. What if John had woken up that morning with a severe case of the fuck-its? Can the Chief Justice swear in like 50 people on Jan. 20 and they’re all President? Could Congress be the President of the United States? Wouldn’t that save some time? Could Roberts have sworn himself in? What if John McCain had slipped him a hundy earlier?

Alright children, hypothetical time is over, just bang your heads quietly on your desks.

The next day, knowing a vocal contingent of his new employers wouldn’t shut up about this3, Obama and Roberts had a do-over. But, of course, something went wrong.

Get the Flash Player to see this content.

Gretchen Carlson is not sure if he’s really the President. I’m not sure if Gretchen Carlson is really a carbon-based lifeform.4

So if Obama serves his term(s) and makes decisions and affects the world as President, in four or eight years, will he really have been the president if he didn’t suck all the souls out of a middle eastern book of magic? Since he won’t really have been the president, we can just open up that grimoire, say the appropriate spell, click our heels, and it will all go back to the way it was before, right?

Go ahead and keep doubting the legitimacy of the first African American president, a fact which I’m sure has no bearing on your newfound sense of civic duty. See what good it does you. Although, the more I think about it, the more sense it starts to make. After all, I heard Michelle was really holding a Qur’an. I mean it was Lincoln’s Qur’an, but still. Fine, he’s not really president.

You know who else wasn’t really president?

You’re not president because some guy in a wizard’s robe says you are. You’re president because we say you are.5

I know this story has pretty much blown over, but there are still people out there6 that will use this as justification for not only stoking their hatred for Pres. Obama and the “left”, which was going to happen regardless, but also for checking out of the political process entirely. Now, don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of reasons to check out of the political process entirely, but this is not one of them.

This is also indicative of a pointless preoccupation with words themselves, of people letting scratches on their cave walls get the best of them. I seem to recall a rather erudite fellow expounding on this somewhat recently.

We forget that if words are a form of magic, they derive their power from us. When we ignore this fact we do ourselves a great and dangerous disservice. When we let simple words and names get the better of us, they rob us, impoverish and weaken us in an already impossible world.

Words are just tools, “tools, of course, can be the subtlest of traps.”

- Me

It’s not getting any better.

(via videogum)

And then I go and spoil it all, by saying something stupid like barnacles.

Guh. This is just demeaning to pickles.

Words don’t matter. Meanings matter. And until we can all beam our wi-fi thoughts about our latest matrix Kung Fu lesson directly into each other’s brains, in lojban of course, that will remain the case.

Words can mean more than one thing. We don’t always mean what we say. Context, body language and inflection can all alter our meanings.

THIS is the magic of language.

Never forget. They’re just words people.

  1. There’s a difference? []
  2. There’s a difference? []
  3. Why did you want this job again, Barry? []
  4. No, I am. She’s not. []
  5. With one notable recent exception. []
  6. If Fox News anchors can rightfully be called “people”. []

Just Barely

Is George W. Bush Still President?

You don’t have to go home, but you have to get the fuck out of here.

Two adult tickets, that’ll be $700b.

Two adult tickets, that'll be $700b.

No wonder this campaign feels so familiar. I already saw it in the 7th grade. If I recall correctly, it wasn’t too bad either.1 At least McCain doesn’t hate Jews. He keeps keeps them as pets.

I clearly realize this would have been much funnier and possibly even popular like two weeks ago, but I kept getting distracted by more farcical events and far be it from me to be timely or wise.

Also, I’ve mostly given up on this site being about anything but politics until the election. I have no clue as to what the hell I’m going to talk about come Nov. 5th, but until then, stay gold ponyboy!

  1. This joke is so obvious I assumed someone already made it, but google didn’t think so and who I am to question the deity of the 21st century. Please accept this small token, my lord. []

Scientific fact: the flyer is the most effective means of communication

Scientific fact: the flyer is the most effective means of communication

This is a thing that is real.

Review time:

If we somehow did elect an America hating madman, hell bent on destroying the “very fabric of democracy,” short of lobbing some nukes on his first day of office, he could hardly do a better job than this guy. A man without hope, is a man without fear.

Also, I sympathize, as I too, have a middle name derived from a barbaric Middle Eastern mythology. It’s Hebrew. Stay strong brother.

(image via Warren Ellis)
(video via Deus Ex Malcontent & boingboing)

  1. Also, so many people have forgotten about 9/11. Looking around, it’s like it never happened. You’d never know. []

Stop talking. You’re ruining it.

Stop talking. You're ruining it.

Can someone please inform this man, that to the extent that anyone ever cared what he had to say (about things he clearly did not understand,) this is no longer the case.

Even when he has a point, no one can hear it over the din of eight years of misery and bad decisions. This is a man, that on the rare occasions when he employs logic and reason simply weakens the two by association.

We are clearly in a run-the-clock-out situation. Take a knee, stop embarrassing your team and just think of all the brush you’ll be able to clear with all your newfound free time.

Pay no attention to the man behind the Oval Office drapes

Can someone please explain this to me?

If you commit a crime and your excuse is that an authority figure coerced you, then rather than reducing your culpability, it actually just makes that authority figure even more guilty than if they had just committed the crimes themselves, even if he’s the president.

This is so plainly obvious that I’m amazed it needs stating, but two-thirds of the senate fail to understand this, so apparently it does.

I never realized the presidential pardon can extend to the president issuing it. The constitution grants the head of the executive branch certain powers but I didn’t know they included wizard powers.

I guess it’s not all bad.