Thursday, November 30, 2006

Bad Taser, No Donut

By now, we've all heard about the malicious tasering of an Iranian-American UCLA student. A video of the incident was posted on youtube, and a rousing on-campus demonstration ensued. Here's what a police officer had to say about it on a police forum:

"They told that little college punk 114 times to stand up. He should not have been Tased 5 times, he should have been Tased 113 times.

Little snot nose, know it all, tree huggin', left wing, daddy's dime, silver spoon, wet behind the ears, no life experience, still on momma's t1t, PUNK A$S.

That brat and his "I want your badge number" lacrosse playing f@ggots need to get their narrow little a$ses in the military and learn some respect.

Does this sound like someone who should be brandishing a painful and dangerous weapon? It might if your I.Q. is under 100, which seems to be the case for this cop, and many too many of his bretheren. He obviously doesn't think too much of higher education, and wears that sentiment on his sleeve. Reports of elderly women, pregnant women, and children being tasered have all been aired by the media, and it becomes clear that tasers are not a good idea. Police officers with limited mental landscapes who are seemingly threatened by their own shadows are brandishing these things like they were water pistols, and seem all too eager to deal out punishment for those who do anything but cower in their presence. How do we protect ourselves from these mad-dog cops?

Is it possible that some officers have a vested interest in the use of tasers? Why, yes, it is, and USA TODAY says so. It turns out that hundreds of officers nationwide are actually on the payroll of companies that manufacture tasers. Here's where the bacon hits the grease. I guess you have to be a snot-nosed college student to understand the concept of "conflict of interest". Attorney Generals across the land should be looking into this.

While on the subject of crime, here's one that surely wins hearts and minds. A 15 year-old Florida boy has twice stolen a bus, and drove it on it's route, picking up passengers. His rationale is that he did a better job than the regular bus drivers. If so, he should be commended. For those of you who have no such improvement in your public transit, and are tired of growing old waiting for the bus, I recommend you take a cab instead.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Serve In Heaven, Or Rule In Starbucks?

As a cabbie, I generally tend to stay away from downtown San Francisco, and lurk in the residential areas, combing the hills, and pleasantly taking in the Victorians. Why do I have such an aversion to being downtown? Let's see now, could it be the crackhead zombies who brazenly walk out into the middle of Market Street in front of you as you're plowing along at 40 mph, trying to get to that airport-bound fare with the suitcase up the block before another cabbie can get to him, causing you to slam on your brakes, skid on the trolley tracks, and wind up stuck behind a bus? Is it the SUV drivers that cut you off, then cruise at 5 mph in front of you while looking for a non-existent parking space? Or, is it the smugness of all the yuppie pod people swishing to and fro on a mecca to Macy's, or on their way home to smarmy, over-priced condos that look like dentist's offices?

Actually, it's all of the above and more, but the worst, most heinous thing about downtown is that ubiquitous green logo. I look left, I see Starbucks. I look right, I see Starbucks. I look ahead, I see Starbucks. I look back... I shudder to think of it. Like in some existentialist nightmare, that evil talisman seems to chase after me with nothing but malevolence. These Kafkaesque coffee shops confront you at every turn. You can run from Starbucks, but you'll only be running TO Starbucks. Old-world news stands, mom-and-pop cafes, independent bookstores, barbershops, candy stores, and cafeterias have gone by the wayside, replaced by the chain that sells The Most Expensive Coffee In The World.

It's easy to see why this happened- the yuppies don't like choices. They eschew variety, and want their thinking done for them. They've bought in to the kind of corporate communism that John D. Rockefeller once envisioned when he said that the individual is gone, never to return. And, since Starbucks is piping in Bob Dylan, they can bask in faux hipness while sucking down that $3.50 caramel chocolate cinnamon double-expresso burnt coffee grande with crack sprinkles when they're on break from Satan's little workshop.

How far does one have to go to get away from this monstrosity? Are the mountains of the moon too far away? When does the next rocket leave? I'm on it. Not everyone suffers the foolishness of Starbucks gladly in their town, though, but what can anyone do about it? If you destroy one, three more pop up in it's place. We can only dream. Perhaps a designer virus that spreads exclusively in Starbucks could be developed, or de-programming subliminals could be placed strategically throughout the city. Hey, I'm just trying to think outside the box here, don't look at me like that. After all, Rome did eventually fall, so there's hope for us yet.

For now, I'll just have to deal the best I can. I'm a moving target, so at least I have that in my favor. To kill the vision, though, a pair of green-tinted sunglasses may be in order. One day, a tourist from Akron, Ohio will ask me where Starbucks is. I'm going to say, that's's across the street from Starbucks.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Get Behind Me, Satan

Well, well, well, look who's back to try and sieze the moment and draw Sonny Boy away from the abyss. Look who's sent the Iraq Study Group, no doubt a plunge protection team, in to try and keep the Middle East from going up in flames. Look who's gotten Rumsfeld thrown under the bus and replaced by Robert Gates. He's back, and looking every bit the Pharoah he always was.

If I had the ear of the president, I would tell him to stuff that old man back in his coffin. Send him and his cronies packing. YOU'RE the Decider, and everyone else lines up behind you. Pull the lever to the trap door, and send James Baker tumbling into the alligator pit. Sure, you've failed at everything you've done in life, but THIS is your defining moment. Is that mean 'ol Nancy Pelosi going to make you run and hide behind daddy, or are you going to pull yourself up by your bootstraps, put on your flight jacket, and deal out some pain? Get on your horse, Dubya, and give it one last ride. Notice how they said that impeachment is off the table? That's because you're the man. You're ten feet tall, and they don't want to mess with you. So, why give up the ghost now? Tell Poppy to stick to the grandfathering business, and to stay out of yours. Who was the head cheerleader at your school? That's right, YOU were. Who's better than you?

Speaking of Nany Pelosi- those who worry about San Francisco values should be more concerned with San Francisco politics. Nancy's following in the footsteps of Diane Feinstein and Willie Brown, two of the slimiest tin horns to ever come down the pike. I always found it interesting that Diane and Willie left the building shortly before Harvey Milk and George Moscone were gunned down in 1978, and that Willie openly admitted that he had received a call warning him not to fly on 9/11. My favorite, though, are the ballot boxes found floating in the Bay by the Coast Guard just after a local election. I know, I know, they were washing the boxes on the docks, and the wind blew them into the Bay. That's what Willie's spokesperson said, anyway. Well, it IS pretty windy here, windy enough to blow the smell of sulfer around for all to smell. Problem is, for some, it's the smell of success. While the little people applaud Pelosi's ascension, the folks in Pacific Heights rattle their jewelry in approval. Good work, Nancy. Welcome to the machine.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Recruiters Lie, Kids Die

Mt. Vernon recruiter: "We're like we're not at war, war ended a long time ago."

Student: "Will I be going to war?"
Recruiter: "I would say your chances would be slim to none ..."

Patchogue recruiter: "You have a 10-times greater chance of dying out here on the roads than you do dying in Iraq."

Student: "Aren't people still being shipped out?"
New Jersey recruiter: "Naw, they bringing people back."
Student: "Nobody is going out to Iraq anymore?"
Recruiter: "Naw, we bringing people back."

Yonkers recruiter: "As long as you don't choose a job in this area, you don't have to worry about going over there."

...we found one recruiter who even claimed if you don't like the Army you could just quit.

Yonkers recruiter: "It's called "failure to adapt" discharge. It's an entry level discharge so it won't affect anything on your record it will just be like it never happened."

These are direct quotes from recruiters who talked to students who were sent undercover by a New York TV station to recruiting centers to find out just what is being said. Well, now we know. These little bastards should be court-martialed immediately, with no questions asked. I hope that station, and/or other media outlets, follows up on how these recruiters from hell are being dealt with.

Meanwhile, a secret war simulation report from 1999 on what an invasion of Iraq would entail was released through a Freedom of Information Act request. It stated that at least 400,000 troops were required, which is almost three times the number that are now on the ground in Iraq, and even then, the situation was likely to lapse into chaos. Is it any wonder that active military leaders are now opening calling for Donald Rumsfeld's ouster? This war is a miserable failure on all levels, and it's time for those responsible to be held accountable. If Pelosi and the other Democrats take over, then they must do whatever it's going to take to force Bush out of this war. If they don't, then it will be a betrayal of epic proportions.