The Week’s Best Cartoons: FBI Seize Sensitive Docs from Mar-a-Lago

The big news … almost the only news this past week was the search warrant executed by the FBI for classified documents Trump stole from the people when he left the White House in disgrace.  No doubt other news happened, but there was little reported on it, so naturally, the weekly political cartoons reflect that.  As she does every week, TokyoSand over at Political Charge has culled some of the best ones from the week.  Sometimes it’s hard to find the humour, but the political cartoonists are pretty damn good at it!  Thank you, TS, for your hard work!


The week started off with a big win for Joe Biden (the passing of the Inflation Reduction Act) and ended with the bombshell that the FBI seized a trove of extremely sensitive documents from Trump’s residence at Mar-a-Lago. Here’s how editorial cartoonists covered that story.

Click here to see ALL the ‘toons!!!

♫ You Don’t Bring Me Flowers ♫

You guys ready for some Barbra Streisand?  Yes, Clive, I know you’re not a fan, but grit your teeth and sit through this one … I’ve got one up my sleeve for you soon!  Meanwhile, this one is for David in hopes of putting a little bit of a smile on his face!


The song was written by Neil Diamond with Alan and Marilyn Bergman for the ill-fated daily TV sitcom All That Glitters. The song was intended to be the theme song, but Norman Lear, the show’s creator, changed the concept of the show and the song was no longer appropriate. Diamond then expanded the track from 45 seconds to 3:17, adding instrumental sections and an additional verse. The Bergmans contributed to the song’s lyrics.

In 1977, Diamond released the album I’m Glad You’re Here with Me Tonight, which included the track You Don’t Bring Me Flowers as a solo performance. Early in 1978, Barbra Streisand covered the song on her album Songbird.

These solo recordings were famously spliced together by Gary Guthrie, a producer at the radio station WAKY-AM in Louisville, Kentucky, who did it as a going away present to his wife, whom he had just divorced. Guthrie’s spliced-together duet version first aired on WAKY on May 24, 1978.  It was such a hit, that other stations began doing their own mix of the song.

Guthrie sent CBS his version of the duet on July 27, and by August 3, both Striesand and Diamond had agreed to the release of a duet version. However, rather than issue any of the spliced-together versions, Columbia Records had Streisand and Diamond record a brand-new “official” studio version, which was released on October 17, 1978.

The song reached number one on the Hot 100 chart for two non-consecutive weeks in December 1978, producing the third number-one hit for both singers. The single sold over one million copies, and eventually went Platinum.

In 1979, Guthrie sued CBS for $5 million, claiming that he was improperly compensated for his role in making the song a hit. The suit was unsuccessful, but acknowledgment and gratitude for Guthrie came from CBS with a Gold record plaque, flowers from Diamond and a telegram from Streisand.

You Don’t Bring Me Flowers
Neil Diamond/Barbra Streisand

You don’t bring me flowers
You don’t sing me love songs
You hardly talk to me anymore
When I come through the door at the end of the day

I remember when
You couldn’t wait to love me
Used to hate to leave me
Now after lovin’ me late at night

When it’s good for you, babe
And you’re feeling alright

Well, you just roll over
And you turn out the light
And you don’t bring me flowers anymore

It used to be so natural (Used to be)
To talk about forever
But used-to-be’s don’t count anymore
They just lay on the floor ’til we sweep them away

And baby, I remember
All the things you taught me

I learned how to laugh
And I learned how to cry

Well I learned how to love
And I learned how to lie

So you’d think I could learn
How to tell you goodbye

You don’t bring me flowers anymore

Well, you’d think I could learn
How to tell you goodbye

You don’t sing to me

And you don’t sing me love songs

You don’t bring me flowers anymore

Songwriters: Alan Bergman / Marilyn Bergman / Neil Diamond
You Don’t Bring Me Flowers lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Spirit Music Group

Foot-Stomping MAD!

It’s been over a year-and-a-half since thousands joined forces to attack the U.S. Capitol in a failed, but nonetheless bloody coup attempt.  The violence on that day, the calls to ‘hang Mike Pence’, still makes me sick to my stomach.  The fact that the attempted coup was approved of by the ‘man’ who called himself ‘president’ still gives me nightmares.  Violence seems to follow Donald Trump wherever he goes, and he seems to incite a great deal of it.  Since that fateful January 6th, violence and calls for violence have increased … even more so in response to a search warrant that was executed to retrieve national security documents Trump illegally stole from us and possibly shared.

Threats of political violence and actual attacks have become a steady reality of American life such that some days I feel we’re living in Somalia instead of the United States.  And the violence isn’t all political … there have been 27 school shootings so far in the first 7 ½ months of 2022!  School children!!!  Yes, 27!  No, you haven’t heard about all of them, for the media only makes a big deal if a relatively large number of children are killed such as was the case in Uvalde, Texas in May, but in total, 83 people, mostly children, have been shot in those 27 school shootings this year.  Can’t blame these directly on politics, but you can sure as hell can blame the politicians who have consistently blocked any form of gun legislation such as banning assault weapons or far more stringent background checks.  So, their answer is to arm all teachers … put even more guns into the hands of people unqualified to have them!

The political violence, however, is out of control and the feeding frenzy isn’t helped by social media, certain mainstream media outlets, and the politicians who keep telling people that the ‘other’ party is the one responsible for all of our woes.

A man named Garrett Ziegler, a former aide to Donald Trump, posted the names and personal information of the FBI Agents who assisted in the execution of the search warrant to retrieve classified documents from the home of Donald Trump.  He even included the social media account of one of the agent’s children!  Within minutes, the families of these agents began receiving death threats.  DEATH THREATS … against the families of law enforcement agents who were merely doing their jobs!

After the brutal murder of George Floyd in 2020, there were numerous Black Lives Matter protest that were, for the most part, peaceful.  What little violence there was, was property damage, not lives threatened.  But people were up in arms because the protests existed.  Yet some of the same people who hated on Black Lives Matter protestors are the very ones cheering those who are threatening civil war, threatening to execute Merrick Garland!  So … apparently they aren’t against violence at all, but are just against Black people, against LGBTQ people, and against anyone who attempts to hold the ‘man’ they have put on a pedestal accountable for his actions.  And speaking of the LGBTQ community …

In late June, a former Marine stepped down as the grand marshal of a July 4th parade in Houston after a deluge of threats that focused on her support of transgender rights. A few weeks later, the gay mayor of an Oklahoma city quit his job after what he described as a series of “threats and attacks bordering on violence.”  A five-year-old girl was evicted from her kindergarten because her parents are gay.  As I reported a week or so ago, a town in Michigan will shut down its library because the library refuses to ban books by LGBTQ authors or about LGBTQ people or issues!

The judge who signed the warrant to search Trump’s home for the missing classified documents is now receiving death threats, as is his family after some on social media called for a “rope around his neck”.  Then Fox “News” exacerbated the situation by posting a photoshopped fake picture of the judge sprawled out with Ghislaine Maxwell giving him a foot massage.  These are the kinds of things that stir the masses and get people KILLED!!!

Political violence, racial violence, school shootings … what the Sam Hell has this nation turned into???  What are we humans turning into???  Have we sold our humanity downriver, traded it for bigotry, hatred and violence???

I don’t have any answers, my friends.  We can … we must … each do our part by controlling our own tempers, by shutting down any conversations where someone is speaking of or calling for a violent act, but that isn’t going to be enough to solve the problem.  We can report those we see on social media outlets like Twitter and Facebook, but that still won’t solve the problem.  I think the answer lies in a direction none of us particularly want to go, but that perhaps we must go, and that is to put some limitations on the 1st Amendment right to free speech.  I don’t like it anymore than you do, but as I’ve long said, every right comes with an accompanying responsibility, and the people of this nation have abused the right without accepting the responsibility.  It is highly irresponsible, criminal even, to call for violence, to call for someone’s ‘execution’ just because you don’t like what he says or does.  We absolutely MUST start holding social media outlets and mainstream news accountable to a higher standard than they currently observe.

And … I’m sure you’re tired of hearing me say this, but we must have some gun control laws that do something more than pay lip service!!!  Ban assault weapons altogether!  Deny a gun to anybody who has even a single incidence of violent behaviour.  Raise the gun ownership age to 25!  Yes, 25!  And make gun ownership a “one strike, you’re out” thing.  We have to do this!!!  And we must make the punishment for any violent act so harsh that it actually serves as a deterrent!  Every person who was in the Capitol on January 6th without authorization should automatically be serving a 5-year prison sentence.  Those who had weapons or harmed anyone should be in prison for 20 years, no exceptions.  If the price of violence is high enough, people will think before they mouth off or worse yet, grab their guns and go on a shooting spree!

I’ve said it enough times, but I’ll keep on saying it … VIOLENCE IS NEVER THE ANSWER!!!  We are truly, and this is not hyperbole, turning into a third-world nation where random shootings are becoming the norm, where even children are targets, and where nobody is quite safe anywhere anymore.  Write to your Senators and Representatives and tell them that THEY have the power to make changes and they damn well better do it NOW!!!  I really don’t know what more we can do, but we better start doing something.

♫ Crocodile Rock ♫ (Redux)

Stress and tension seem to rule the day, no matter which side of the big pond you’re on this week, so I thought it was time for a toe-tappin’ tune!  This was never among my favourite Elton songs, but you’ve got to admit, it will get your feet tapping!

Released as a single in 1972, and in 1973 on his album titled Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player, this became his first U.S. number-one single, staying in the top spot for three weeks in February 1973.

The lyrics take a nostalgic look at early rock ‘n’ roll, dating and youthful independence of that era. Elton John band members, including Davey Johnstone on guitars, Dee Murray on bass and Nigel Olsson on drums, were also performers on the song. Elton John, however, did all the vocals, including the falsetto backing vocals.

The song, written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin, was inspired by Elton’s discovery of leading Australian band Daddy Cool and their hit single Eagle Rock, which was the most successful Australian single of the early 1970s (with 1,000,000 sold), remaining at #1 for a record of 10 weeks. John heard the song and the group on his 1972 Australian tour and was greatly impressed by it. The song also is said to have been strongly influenced by songs from the late 50s-early 60s , including Del Shannon’s 1962 Cry Myself to Sleep and Little Darlin’ (recorded in 1957 by The Diamonds and The Gladiolas), and lyrically by Rock Around the Clock by Bill Haley and his Comets. The opening riff heavily resembles Let’s Dance by Chris Montez, and the chorus resembles Speedy Gonzales by Pat Boone.

In a 1974 lawsuit filed in the US District Court of Los Angeles by attorney Donald Barnett on behalf of Speedy Gonzales’ composer Buddy Kaye, it was alleged that defendants Elton John and Bernie Taupin illegally incorporated chords from Speedy Gonzales which produced a falsetto tone into the Crocodile song.  The parties reached a settlement between them, thus there was no need for a duel at dawn.

Elton performed this on The Muppet Show when he appeared on a Season Two episode in 1977. A very popular song with kids, it made for a great opening number, with Elton performing in a swamp with a crocodile chorus.  Now, you guys already know that I am a Muppets fan, so it naturally follows that, since I’m trying to cheer us all up with this song, I’m going to include that one too!

Crocodile Rock
Elton John

I remember when rock was young
Me and Suzie had so much fun
Holding hands and skimming stones
Had an old gold Chevy and a place of my own
But the biggest kick I ever got
Was doing a thing called the Crocodile Rock

While the other kids were Rocking Round the Clock
We were hopping and bopping to the Crocodile Rock
Well Crocodile Rocking is something shocking
When your feet just can’t keep still
I never knew me a better time and I guess I never will
Oh Lawdy mama those Friday nights
When Suzie wore her dresses tight
And the Crocodile Rocking was out of sight

La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la

But the years went by and the rock just died
Suzie went and left us for some foreign guy
Long nights crying by the record machine
Dreaming of my Chevy and my old blue jeans
But they’ll never kill the thrills we’ve got
Burning up to the Crocodile Rock
Learning fast as the weeks went past
We really thought the Crocodile Rock would last

Well Crocodile Rocking is something shocking
When your feet just can’t keep still
I never knew me a better time and I guess I never will
Oh Lawdy mama those Friday nights
When Suzie wore her dresses tight
And the Crocodile Rocking was out of sight

La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la

I remember when rock was young
Me and Suzie had so much fun
Holding hands and skimming stones
Had an old gold Chevy and a place of my own
But the biggest kick I ever got
Was doing a thing called the Crocodile Rock
While the other kids were Rocking Round the Clock
We were hopping and bopping to the Crocodile Rock

Well Crocodile Rocking is something shocking
When your feet just can’t keep still
I never knew me a better time and I guess I never will
Oh Lawdy mama those Friday nights
When Suzie wore her dresses tight
And the Crocodile Rocking was out of sight

La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la
La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la
La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Bernie Taupin / Elton John
Crocodile Rock lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Downtown Music Publishing

Saturday Surprise — A Unique Dining Experience

Good morning and welcome to …

Saturday Surprise took a brief hiatus last week, but I’m back this weekend and I’ve got something fun for you today!  But first … I’ve got a joke (courtesy of my blogging friend Jim Borden):

What did the farmer say when he couldn’t find his tractor?  (answer at the end of the post)

Now, I’m afraid of heights … I wasn’t as a child, for I used to love nothing better than to climb a tree and keep my parents in suspense as to my whereabouts, but as I got older, heights became one of the few things I actually fear.  In fact, I cannot even stand on a kitchen chair to put something on the upper shelves anymore without getting dizzy and having chest pains!  So, today’s Saturday Surprise is one that I will only partake of from my armchair, but it looks like great fun!

Angélique Schmeinck is a Dutch master chef with her own quite popular restaurant.  Although I’m sure the food is unique and tasty, it is the venue of her restaurant that has earned it a place here on Saturday Surprise, for her restaurant is in a … wait for it … hot air balloon!

According to Atlas Obscura …

Schmeinck had her “Eureka” moment in 2003 when she saw a hot-air balloon and realized, “a hot-air balloon is actually a huge hot oven!” Excited by the opportunity to build her own restaurant from scratch, she called a hot-air balloon company for help. Two weeks later, they hoisted a customized bag filled with fish and chicken to the crown of a balloon via pulleys. The flame at the balloon’s base brought the temperature to 194 degrees Fahrenheit (90 degrees Celsius), an ideal heat level for slow-cooked meals. When the balloon landed an hour and a half later, Schmeinck removed the fish and chicken. “I had tears in my eyes when I saw that it was perfectly cooked,” she says.

That successful trial run was the starting point of CuliAir, the world’s first hot-air balloon restaurant. Since her maiden voyage almost two decades ago, Schmeinck has hosted about 50 trips each year across the Netherlands. Among the key advantages of her airborne kitchen are a cooking counter that hangs off the side of the balloon basket (and includes a camphor stove) and a pulley system attached to customized steel containers that allows Schmeinck to raise the food toward the balloon’s flame and lower it. Her system needs to be efficient: On board, Schmeinck has an hour and a half to serve three courses to 10 people. “Organization is the most important thing,” she says. Her kitchen is so well-designed that Schmeinck says she can find items blind.

Guests receive notification on where to meet mere hours before takeoff. CuliAir uses 20 different takeoff locations to accommodate the wide range of flying conditions. Weather can alter landing times or how high the balloon flies, an especially important consideration given the balloon flame’s dual function as oven and engine. Higher elevations require a higher flame, which means an increase in cooking temperature. Since the food that Schmeinck cooks requires temperatures between 194 to 230 degrees Fahrenheit, she works with the balloon’s pilot to ensure that course adjustments don’t affect a dish.

When guests arrive in the designated takeoff meadow, Schmeinck serves them an appetizer—such as melon, goat cheese, and dried capers—followed by champagne. Meanwhile, a ground crew sets up the large orange-and-white balloon and attached basket that can accommodate up to 12 people. The basket lays on its side, allowing guests to climb in and lay horizontally until the flame fills the balloon with enough heat to lift everything off the ground (and pull passengers upright). Once fully airborne, Schmeinck gets cooking.

The first in-the-sky course is typically a seafood cocktail. The natural, fresh ingredients can be prepared raw, cooked low, or cooked slow. This summer, Schmeinck has served langoustines (a Norwegian lobster-like delicacy), fresh clams, and lobster with passionfruit, lightly fermented yellow carrots, and glasswort (a saltmarsh plant that Schmeinck dubs “sea veggies”).

During the flight, Schmeinck serves wine and gives more information about her dishes. Standing-room only encourages interactions between the chef, pilot, and other diners as the balloon sails above the countryside, taking in the view from a cruising altitude that ranges 500 to 2,500 feet. “Sometimes when the clouds are low, we can go right through them,” says Schmeinck. “It’s a little bit misty. Then we’re above the clouds and see the sun shining. That moment is unforgettable. It’s amazing for me, after all these years.”

Schmeinck’s second course arrives 45 minutes later: royal sea bass pulled down from the suspended steel containers and served in a 12-year bouillabaisse sauce alongside seasonal vegetables, such as asparagus and artichoke. Schmeinck cooks these on the stove that dangles over the balloon basket’s edge with “a nice vadouvan oil,” a French spice blend that derives its ingredients from masala. While all other dishes and ingredients rotate according to season, her sea bass is a staple. “It’s the best fish for balloon cooking because it has a little more fat, which goes well with low and slow cooking,” Schmeinck explains. That, plus the inimitable bouillabaisse sauce, makes for a pairing that mirrors the balloon ride: rich and intense, light and adventurous.

The third course trends toward fowl, although lamb made an appearance earlier this year. Schmeinck’s most recent menu includes duck confit that is cooked in the raised containers, then glazed in its own juices. She pairs it with summer mushrooms and a salsa of lightly fermented cauliflower and pumpkin that she seasons with lemon, star anise, and cardamom.

After serving the third course, Schmeinck cleans up as the pilot navigates the balloon to the ground. Landings can range from smooth to bumpy. Back on terra firma, live music welcomes guests back as they enjoy a dessert (a recent offering was white chocolate and passionfruit mousse topped with a crispy rainbow meringue, raspberry, and basil syrup). Sometimes, Schmeinck will even serenade the guests herself with a guitar.

Given the precision necessary for running a successful CuliAir voyage, one must ask: Does anything ever go wrong? “The challenges are when we have to land earlier,” Schmeinck says. If the weather turns rough, the pilot will make a safety landing and the chef serves the main course in the meadow. Another time in CuliAir’s early days, “the control [for the suspended cooking containers] didn’t go down. It was stuck in the balloon so we could only eat vegetables.”

Sometimes the bumps along the way aren’t even related to air travel or the food: Marriage proposals are common, though not always well received, Schmeinck says. And what happens in the balloon doesn’t always stay in the balloon, as was the case with a flyaway black towel that she mistook for a bird. But overall, each voyage delivers an exhilarating experience. “The guests are having a great adventure, so all the senses are very open,” she explains. “The composition of the food and the flavor combinations must have the same adventurous character. It must not be boring, or too soft. . . . It must not be too heavy, or have too much cream, but it must be as light and elegant and fresh as ballooning itself.”


Now doesn’t that look like fun?  If you’re not afraid of heights, that is!  Oh … and the answer to the joke up at the top is … “Where’s my tractor?”

Now go forth and have a happy weekend!  And Happy Birthday wishes to my friend Ugo!!

Need I Say More?

Tom and Marcella gave their three children each a bowl of rice and half an apple for supper last night.  They both work at minimum wage jobs and payday is a few days away yet, so they are rationing food carefully.  Audrey’s little girl … her name is Sarah, but they call her Muffin … is diabetic and almost out of insulin.  Audrey is out of work, has no insurance, and no money to pay for Muffin’s insulin.  Jeff’s wife died last month of Covid and he is struggling to raise their three children without her after losing his job because he missed so much time at work during her illness.  He holds in his hand an eviction notice because he doesn’t have money to pay the rent.  Robert, once a proud man with a job, a home, and a family now lives under a highway overpass, his few possessions in a cardboard box, since the company he worked for shut down their U.S. operations and in the pandemic era he was unable to find another job.

Meanwhile …

Billionaire Peter Thiel has so far poured over $25 million into the races of Blake Masters in Arizona and J.D. Vance in Ohio. Kenneth C. Griffin, the CEO of giant hedge fund Citadel, is bankrolling Republican super PACs to the tune of nearly $50 million. Stephen A. Schwarzman, chairman of giant hedge fund Blackstone, has so far contributed a combined $20 million to the main House and Senate Republican super PAC.  And the list goes on.

How many children could have had a few healthy meals, or how many families could have paid their rent and utilities with the millions of dollars being given to already-wealthy political candidates?

Need I say more?

♫ How Can You Mend A Broken Heart ♫

Sometimes, I actually remember when someone asks me to play a certain song, but most often things don’t stick around in my brain for very long!  Luckily, I wrote this one down when my dear friend Amy asked me to play it!  Unluckily, I forgot I had written it down and just came across my jotted note tonight, while looking for something else!  So … this one’s for you, sweet Amy!!!


I was so so so wrong about this song!  I could have sworn it was Al Green’s and that the Bee Gees covered it, but it turns out the Bee Gees wrote and were the first to record the song, with Al Green’s version coming a year later!

Barry and Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees wrote this in August 1970, along with Lonely Days when the Gibb brothers had reconvened following a period of break-up and alienation.  According to Barry Gibb …

“Robin came to my place, and that afternoon we wrote How Can You Mend a Broken Heart and that obviously was a link to us coming back together. We called Maurice, finished the song, went to the studio and once again, with only ‘Broken Heart’ as a basic structure, we went in to the studio with that and an idea for ‘Lonely Days’, and those two songs were recorded that night.”

They originally offered the song to Andy Williams, but ended up recording it themselves, although Williams did later cover the song on his album You’ve Got a Friend.

The song was sung live for the first time in 1971, in a performance that was notable as drummer Geoff Bridgford’s first appearance with the band. Although failing to chart on the UK Singles Chart, the song became the Bee Gees’ first US number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and also reached number four on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. Billboard ranked it as the No. 5 song for 1971. In Spain, it was released under the title “Cómo Puedes Arreglar Un Corazón Destrozado”.

Al Green recorded the song a year later, in 1972, and it was his version that was used in the 1999 movie Notting Hill.  Because it was the Al Green version I initially set out to play, and because I like both, though very different versions, I shall play both.

How Can You Mend a Broken Heart? 
Al Green

I can think of younger days when living for my life
Was everything a man could want to do
I could never see tomorrow, but I was never told about the sorrow

And how can you mend a broken heart?
How can you stop the rain from falling down?
How can you stop the sun from shining?
What makes the world go round?
How can you mend a this broken man?
How can a loser ever win?
Please help me mend my broken heart and let me live again

I can still feel the breeze that rustles through the trees
And misty memories of days gone by
We could never see tomorrow, no one said a word about the sorrow

And how can you mend a broken heart?
How can you stop the rain from falling down?
How can you stop the sun from shining?
What makes the world go round?
How can you mend this broken man?
How can a loser ever win?
Please help me mend my broken heart and let me live again

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Barry Gibb / Robin Gibb
How Can You Mend a Broken Heart? – Notting Hill lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

Humour In The Snippets!

Sometimes snarky snippets can be humorous, too.


A bit of a disappointment, I guess

A man named Shahram Poursafi started planning to murder former national security advisor John Bolton in October in likely retaliation for his involvement in a drone strike that killed Qassem Soleimani.  Poursafi, a member of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, attempted to pay people in D.C. or Maryland up to $300,000 to carry out the murder, but was thus far unsuccessful and the FBI is currently attempting to locate him.

John Bolton was interviewed by Wolf Blitzer on CNN’s “Situation Room” on Wednesday.  Blitzer asked …

“The suspect put a $300,000 price tag on your head.  What goes through your mind, ambassador, hearing the details of this plot, as explained today in great detail by the U.S. Justice Department?”

I don’t know what sort of response I might have expected, but it wasn’t this one …

“Well, I was embarrassed at the low price. I would have thought it would have been higher. But I guess maybe it was the exchange rate problem or something.”

Okaaaay …


A costly – but funny – venture

In Miami, Florida, a dude named Thomas Kennedy and his friends spent $1,800 to commission a plane to fly over Mar-a-Lago for three hours with this banner …

Says Kennedy …

“It brought me a lot of joy to do so. I would do it again.”

Kennedy said the message was for Trump and his supporters who had gathered on the Southern Boulevard Bridge near the property for a third day this week.

“Honestly, go do something better with your time.”

I wouldn’t have spent $1,800, but I have to admit I got quite a kick out of this!


The drama ‘king’

Oh the drama!  If you ever doubted that Sean Hannity of Fox is an actor, not a newsman, wonder no more.  After the search warrant was executed at Mar-a-Lago, Hannity went on a tangent, saying …

“The FBI is blatantly targeting our fellow Americans for their political beliefs. The bureau’s reputation has been shattered. My faith in an organization — I’ll be honest, I had two family members. They were a deity in my family because they worked for this organization. I revered this organization for decades of my life. If you listen to my radio show, watch this show, you know my love of law enforcement, it has now been pretty much utterly destroyed.”

As dramatic a speech as any I’ve heard!  Grow up, Sean … pull up those big-boy pants and get over yourself, ‘k?


Well, folks, that’s all the humour I could find in the news tonight, so will you settle for a few cartoons to round things out?

They Can Write Books, But They Cannot Govern

Cartoonist Scott Stantis writes that …

“When I started working in Republican campaigns, the party I signed up for had allegiance to a set of principles and ideals. Lower taxes, fewer regulations and, mostly, adherence to the rule of law. Now we see a bizarro party where right is wrong, wrong is right and a strictly enforced allegiance, not to principles, but to a deeply flawed individual.”

He is, I believe, spot-on.  The ‘GOP’ perhaps should be re-named the ‘DOP’ — Decayed Old Party.  Frank Bruni’s newsletter today further cements Stantis’ view of today’s Republican Party …


Josh Hawley’s manhood, Mike Pompeo’s midriff and other 2024 teases

By Frank Bruni

11 August 2022

Josh Hawley has a book about manhood coming out next year. Nikki Haley has a book about womanhood coming out in two months.

Mike Pompeo has lost so much weight that he’s barely recognizable. Mike Pence has grown so much spine that he’s almost a vertebrate.

Don’t tell them Donald Trump is the Republican Party’s inevitable 2024 presidential nominee. If that’s foreordained, then a whole lot of literary, cardiovascular and orthopedic effort has gone to waste.

The news media is lousy of late with articles about the various Democrats potentially waiting in the wings if President Biden decides against a second term, to the point where he’s sometimes treated as more of a 2024 question mark than Trump is.

Maybe that’s right. In a straw poll of Republicans at the Conservative Political Action Conference last weekend, Trump was the top choice to run for president, winning 69 percent of the vote. Second place went to Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida, with just 24 percent, and third went to Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, with a measly 2 percent.

But Trump is no spring chicken, and by the looks of things, he pays much less heed to his health than Biden does. A year from now he could be unfit for office in more ways than he already is.

He could be in handcuffs! OK, that’s probably just a happy fantasy. But maybe less of one since the F.B.I. raided Mar-a-Lago on Monday? He’s the subject of investigations civil and criminal, federal and state.

Or he could finally wear out his Republican welcome. “It is a sign of weakness, not strength, that Team Trump has been reduced to touting straw-poll results from events that most Americans, and indeed the vast majority of Republicans, know nothing about,” Isaac Schorr wrote in National Review early this week, adding that CPAC had in fact “been repurposed into an appeal to the former president’s vanity.”

The Republicans eager to take his place at the helm of the party know all that. And they don’t have to be quite as discreet and demure in their positioning as Democrats interested in standing in for Biden do. Trump’s not the incumbent president, at least not in the world beyond his and his supplicants’ delusions.

That positioning, once you recognize it, is a hoot. Everyone’s after a kind of branding that rivals won’t copy, a moment in the spotlight that competitors can’t match, an angle, an edge.

DeSantis’s action-figure approach to his role as governor of Florida is in part about the fact that Cruz, Hawley and others don’t have the executive authority that he does and can’t make things happen as unilaterally or as quickly. They’re would-be MAGA superheroes bereft of their red capes.

So a week ago, DeSantis didn’t merely suspend the top Tampa Bay area prosecutor, who said that he would never consider abortion a crime. DeSantis also peacocked to that part of the state and, surrounded by a flock of law enforcement officials, crowed about his decision during a news conference.

Cruz and Hawley were such hams during the confirmation hearings for Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson because, as members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, they had a stage that DeSantis, Pence, Pompeo and others didn’t. Might as well pig out on the opportunity.

Haley’s forthcoming book, “If You Want Something Done: Leadership Lessons From Bold Women,” is one that Cruz, Hawley, Pence and Pompeo would have an awkward time pulling off, and it beats voters over the head with the fact that she’s a trailblazer in ways that they can’t be.

But does she or any other Republican love the Lord with Pence’s ardor? That’s a question he obviously wants to put in voters’ minds with his memoir, “So Help Me God,” to be released about a month after “If You Want Something Done.”

Pompeo is doing a prep-for-the-presidency twofer. According to The New York Post, he shed 90 pounds in six months after his stint as Trump’s secretary of state was over. And he’s apparently putting the finishing touches on a memoir of his own, “Never Give an Inch: Fighting for the America I Love,” which Broadside Books is scheduled to publish in January.

Its crowded company includes not only Haley’s and Pence’s books but also one by Cruz, “Justice Corrupted: How the Left Weaponized Our Legal System,” which is due in late October, and, of course, Hawley’s testosterone treatise, “Manhood: The Masculine Virtues America Needs,” which has surely become a more risible sell in the wake of those images of him sprinting for the Capitol exit on Jan. 6, 2021.

Here, for your delectation, is a snippet of the promotional copy for Hawley’s book: “No republic has ever survived without men of character to defend what is just and true. Starting with the wisdom of the ancients, from the Greek and Roman philosophers to Jesus of Nazareth, and drawing on the lessons of American history, Hawley identifies the defining strengths of men, including responsibility, bravery, fidelity and leadership.” I have goose bumps.

Lest “Manhood” fail to persuade you of Hawley’s nonpareil virility, he summoned boundless courage last week to stand up to … Finland and Sweden. He was the only senator to vote against their admission to NATO.

David Von Drehle sized it up correctly in a column in The Washington Post: “In search of a position that would set him apart from his rivals among the Senate’s young conservatives, Hawley arrived at the cockeyed notion that adding two robust military powers with vibrant economies would somehow increase NATO’s burden on U.S. resources.”

Cockeyed? No! Cocksure — and undoubtedly weighing which fearsome and dastardly global actor he’ll unleash the full force of his manliness on next. The citizens of New Zealand tremble. The people of Andorra quiver.

♫ Hold On ♫ (Redux)

I was in the kitchen this afternoon, scrubbing my indoor electric grill that I had used to grill chicken breasts ala Marguerite last night (NOT a fun chore, scrubbing the grill!!!) when I found myself humming, then quietly singing this song.  I couldn’t remember the title of the song nor the name of the group (have I mentioned that my memory is not what it once was?), but I remembered that the daughter of one (two) of The Mamas and the Papas was part of the group, so from there it was easy to find the song. And then, I remembered that this is a favourite of my dear friend, David’s … and so the conclusion was fairly simple … redux!!!  This one’s for you, David!


In this case, the group has a more interesting history than the actual song itself.  The group, Wilson Phillips, is a trio of three female singers:  Chynna Phillips, Carnie Wilson & Wendy Wilson. Chyna Phillips is the daughter of John & Michelle Phillips of The Mamas and The Papas, and the two Wilson girls are the daughters of Brian Wilson of Beach Boy  fame, and Marilyn Rovell of The Honeys.  They all grew up together in Southern California and the girls started the group when they were only teens.

The song, Hold On, released in 1990, hit the #1 spot in the U.S. and Canada, and #6 in the UK and New Zealand.  The song won the Billboard Music Award for Hot 100 Single of the Year for 1990. At the Grammy Awards of 1991, the song received a nomination for Song of the Year, losing to From a Distance by Julie Gold and performed by Bette Midler.

Hold On
Wilson Phillips

I know there’s pain
Why do you lock yourself up in these chains?
No one can change your life except for you
Don’t ever let anyone step all over you
Just open your heart and your mind
Is it really fair to feel this way inside?

Some day somebody’s gonna make you want to
Turn around and say goodbye
Until then baby are you going to let them
Hold you down and make you cry
Don’t you know?
Don’t you know things can change
Things’ll go your way
If you hold on for one more day
Can you hold on for one more day
Things’ll go your way
Hold on for one more day

You could sustain
Or are you comfortable with the pain?
You’ve got no one to blame for your unhappiness
You got yourself into your own mess
Lettin’ your worries pass you by
Don’t you think it’s worth your time
To change your mind?

Some day somebody’s gonna make you want to
Turn around and say goodbye
Until then baby are you going to let them
Hold you down and make you cry
Don’t you know?
Don’t you know things can change
Things’ll go your way
If you hold on for one more day
Can you hold on for one more day
Things’ll go your way
Hold on for one more day

I know that there is pain
But you hold on for one more day and
Break free the chains
Yeah I know that there is pain
But you hold on for one more day and you
Break free, break from the chains

Some day somebody’s gonna make you want to
Turn around and say goodbye
Until then baby are you going to let them
Hold you down and make you cry
Don’t you know?
Don’t you know things can change
Things’ll go your way
If you hold on for one more day yeah
If you hold on

Don’t you know things can change
Things’ll go your way
If you hold on for one more day
If you hold on
Can you hold on
Hold on baby
Won’t you tell me now
Hold on for one more day ’cause
It’s gonna go your way

Don’t you know things can change
Things’ll go your way
If you hold on for one more day
Can’t you change it this time

Make up your mind
Hold on
Hold on
Baby hold on

Songwriters: Carnie Wilson / Chynna Phillips / Glen Ballard
Hold On lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group