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The Horror Of Competence.

Saturday, December 06, 2008 by Michael Reynolds

It's an unfamiliar feeling. The President of the United States is actually smarter than I am. He knows more than I do. He's not only smarter, he's better-informed.

And it's not just a matter of IQ or education. It's that I think Barack Obama is better suited to running the country than I am. (Okay, any number of people are. As president I'd be on the McCain end of the McCain-Obama 'Cursing, Craziness n' Drama' scale. President Reynolds is reported to be drunk and depressed after launching nuclear weapons against the Pakistani Tribal areas. Sources say he's intervening to get more episodes of 30 Rock.)

In fact, here's the thing: if Obama says the answer is X and I say it's Y, the chances are it's X. I'd bet on it. I'd bet he's right and I'm wrong.

When's the last time you felt that way? No, not about me, Jesus, keep up. I mean, when's the last time you actually believed the President of the United States, POTUS, the big guy, the Commander in Chief, was actually less full of shit than you are?

I always knew Bill Clinton was smart as hell. But I never believed in him, I never trusted that he was using his IQ to best advantage. I always knew he could be led around by his dick, and that he was undisciplined and emotional and too in love with his own capacity for manipulation.

I knew Nixon was smart, but of course he was also Satan, which mitigated the intelligence thing a bit.

I never thought Reagan was smart, but I thought he was strong, and comfortable in his own skin. I never trusted him, often disagreed with him, but I respected him. (Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall. Goddamn right, Ronnie. And yeah, they were an evil empire.)

I always thought Carter was an idiot. And a pussy to boot. I never liked Bush the Elder but he knew some things, he was a good man, a genuine public servant. Not an idiot.

As for Bush the Lesser, I didn't vote for him but I was at peace with him beating Gore. The country was in pretty good shape at that point. Bush inherited a big surplus, we were undisputed masters of planet Earth, democracy had triumphed. I figured, "Okay, he's an arrogant frat boy twat, but how much damage can he do?"

Ah hah hah hah. Hah. Hah hah hah hahahahahahah. Oh, lordie. Hah hah hah hah. But seriously. Hah hahahahahahahahahahaha. (Wiping away tears of laughter.)

The point is that from Nixon to Ford (who?) to Carter to Reagan to Big Bush to Clinton to Baby Bush I always felt I knew just a teensy bit better than they did. "Teensy bit," except for Clinton and Baby Bush who I thought were such useless fucking imbeciles that even I couldn't fuck the country up any more than they did. In fact, I'd swap the average Starbucks barista straight across for either of them. A Starbucks barista can make a cappuccino, which makes them roughly 100% more useful that either Mr. Carter or Mr. Bush.

Although about half of Starbucks baristas don't know the difference between a cappuccino and a latte. Here's a clue: if the cap weighs the same as a latte you've screwed up. Especially if I say I want a dry cappuccino. I mean, really. Are you not embarrassed to hand me a "dry" cap and a latte and they weigh exactly the same?

Where was I? Oh yeah, here's the point: it's weird. This feeling that the President is maybe not a buffoon. This feeling that maybe I don't need to be playing Air Potus, trying to put some English on the ball, trying to exert some ethereal telekinetic power to direct the president toward the correct door, the one labeled "The Smart Choice," and away from the door labeled, "Chimpanzees Only."

What if this continues? What if it turns out Obama really is smart? And centered? And strong? What if he knows better than I do? What if he doesn't need me yelling, "No, you stupid asshole, that's the wrong choice!"

What the hell am I going to do with myself for the next four years?

What will become of me?

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The Goof

Friday, December 05, 2008 by Michael Reynolds

Good dog.

Goofy is a good dog. He used to be kind of a bad dog. He once ate the legs off an entire antique, quarter-sawn oak table and chairs. We ended up giving them away. He also ate sheet rock. What you might call, a wall.

Goofy is a sort of idiot savant. Mostly, he's an idiot. As a matter of fact he's about 90% idiot. The savant part applies only to the obtaining of food. Goofy has eaten every form of food product known to man or dog-kind and from every possible location. Turkey off the kitchen counter? Check. Cheez-its from the covered trash? No sweat. Cookies crushed beneath a Wile E. Coyote anvil? Oh, he can do that.

Part of Goofy's genius is that he recognizes food sources where most animals don't. Is dog shit food? Absolutely. Rabbit shit? Clearly. In Tuscany he ate olives straight off the tree. Under some circumstances mulch is food. Dead things? Sure. Also gravel.

In the last year Goofy has survived being shipped from North Carolina to Germany, then a car ride to Italy, then a plane ride to New York, a night in a posh Manhattan kennel, a flight to California, and two weeks in another kennel. (They had a pool! Seriously. Dude: it's L.A.) And then he encountered the carpet in our new abode here in neutron-bombed Irvine. He tore a ligament and had to have surgery.

$3,000 worth of surgery. Followed by 8 weeks of lying around, (hence the cage) being plied with food. Which I worry will erode his food-scrounging skills.

Now Goofy has a big purple bandage on one leg, a morphine patch on the other, and a cone on his head. Also his ass has been shaved. We don't quite know why, and he sure as hell doesn't know why.

Goofy would like you all to know that he is fine, although somewhat mystefied by his current predicament.

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