1. Monday, June 7, 2004

    Howard Owens writes: 


    Tony, I’ll sign my name. No problem.

    And I’ll say I’m disappointed in you. Not surprised.

    We’ve had some good times together and I think you’re a great guy. Bright. Fucking great writer. Good tastes in all aethetic things in life.

    I’ve always been silent on your rants against Bush. I didn’t vote for the man. I’ve usually had doubts about him. But there are also things I admire about him. One of the things I admire about him is that he knows what he believes and he sticks to his guns. He has a belief system, and he sticks to it. Among those beliefs are a few that I share — the value of freedom and a strong belief in the future of the free world.

    These were also Reagans beliefs, which is why I came to admire him. Among many reasons, not the least of which is he was absolutely right about the Evil Empire, which was not something that I recognized back then. If Reagan did indeed fuck up in every other manner you care to name — you can’t take away from him that he was right about communism, and he killed the biggest communist dragon. For that alone he should be called a saint and a hero to all mankind. In that one stroke, he saved more lives than any number of millions of dollars that could have spent on AIDS research.

    I know your whole “none of this is true” schtick, but when you write that you’re glad an American citizen is dead, and that you wish he’d never lived, I wonder about you. If you believe it, I’m dumbfounded. If you don’t, it’s irresponsible to feed the bile of people who do.

    It used to drive me crazy during the Clinton years when the right wing would demonize the man. It’s beyond any reality that a Bill Clinton or a George Bush or a Ronald Reagan is 100 percent evil. People that argue against these men in these terms do not argue against the man in fact; they argue against a the man in fiction. They argue against a characture of a demon they have invented in their own minds. That’s what you’ve done with Bush. That’s what you have done with Reagan. The truth is far more sublime. I know you’re capable of grasping such complexity. I wonder why you don’t do it.

    It may not win me any brownie points with you or our mutual friends to be so unsophisticated as to miss the possible irony of your post, if there is any, but I think it goes a bit further beyond good taste than what I can let pass without comment.

    Howard,

    I also enjoyed the great times that we’ve had together and I hope that we have more.

    I can understand how you can be disappointed by me and confused and not suprised by what I write about Bush and Reagan and how I’m glad that one of them is dead and how I would be glad if the other died too, but I’ve learned to live with being misunderstood, and ive grown used to walking among the dumbfounded.

    Still, I humbly respond to you in good spirits and with respect despite the amount of brownie points you may have with me or our mutual friends. (Which by the way remains high with me because sharing free baseball tickets is priceless, and I thank you for your genoristy and hospitality.)

    but fuck ronald reagan and the readmylips turd that followed him and the corn in the greenest part of shit who now occupies our white house.

    motherfucker dragged us three trillion dollars in debt, back when a trillion was worth something.

    cut everything except the military, and wanted to spend even more on star wars.

    and everyones all, but he brought down the wall but he brought down the wall.

    you know what, fuck the wall.

    plus it was still standing a year and a half after dutchie left office. so nice catchphrase but seriously, wtf?

    plus eastern europe was fucked anyhow, the soviets could barely take on afghanistan without coughing up a lung (and some say it was that 10-year not-so-cold-war that brought the collapse of the soviet empire) and im supposed to just sit here and watch the kids today get fed the same heap of shit that i was served up as a lad?

    which was the soviets all hated us and couldnt wait to nuke us and their army was just as mighty as ours and they were totally on par with us in every way, if not stronger, because Everyone there were ready to destroy us, whereas lazyass americans like me were getting distracted to atari, pop rocks, and ac/dc.

    turns out, infact, reagan was absolutely wrong about the evil empire. they were broke, they were dumb, they had painted themselves into a corner, and put all their money into the wrong things: ammo, gymnastics, and booze. and today they are dust. not because of reagan reading laughable lines in germany,

    but because they lived by fear and then died by it.

    if reagan was such a badass mofo why didnt he also swing over to bejing and ask gorby to bring down that wall too.

    and wait up mccarthy, but wasnt reagan exactly wrong about communism after all?

    certainly not right about trade, for all i need to do is take a little walk down to my local 99 cent store, to see that not only do the commies in china know how to make friggin anything, but they can do it cheap, and they can do it in such a way that the average american only sees price and doesnt give two craps about alleged quality.

    its a fucking boiled egg slicer. it’s 99 cents, if it doesnt last forever i think i’ll live.

    and you cant point to cuba because mlb sure are buying up cuban players, and we both know that if we were playing fair with castro you and i would both be sipping cuban rum right this damn minute.

    meanwhile when we do play fair, as for example like we do with our most favored nation, the us trade deficit against china, call it commie or not (it is), has swung in favor of the nuke-bearing dictators, mightilly. 3:1 in recent times. and im to believe that no form of communism works?

    but fuck all this fucking bullshit. the bigger problem that i have with reagan, and in a much larger sense against bush is this: america, by pure numbers, should have a brilliant, powerful, charismatic leader who you dont have to quibble about to agree upon his brilliance.

    shit we should have dozens, if not more.

    out of nearly three hundred million people, one or two friggin geniuses should have risen to the top over the last twenty five years by now, capable of not only holding his own during the tough times, but able to lead this nation into a land of milk and honey during the good times. but instead you invite me to tolerate these knuckleheads. and you want to pretend that youre dumbfounded by me?

    surely there should have been a visionary who could enunciate this fine country’s dreams and organize a team who could make those dreams come true over a period of 8 years.

    instead you ask me to not only settle for this bullshit but respect it? while trying to convince me that this is better than average? not only is all of this insulting, but a slap in the face of what could be the greatest country in the world.

    that sort of blanket automatic forgiveness blind trust fosters the situation that we have today where a gallon of unleaded at $2.19 seems like a steal.

    just because youve sold out, my man, doesnt mean that we all have.

    some of us believe that america deserves better. and it might begin with allowing those who vote to have their votes actually count.

    mr. reagans death should be a bedtime for bullshit, but how can we even get out of this murky morass of mediocraty if you insist on watering down the genepool of eligible candidates by suggesting that theres something about the incumbant thats admirable.

    whats admirable is that he gets out of bed in the morning without bumping his head on the nightstand.

    howard, this is america the beautiful. the land that i love.

    i shouldnt be able to beat the holy fuck out of the commander in chief in scrabble, let alone economics, common sense, or trivial pursuit.

    an alleged Christian, he couldnt even figure out a way last week to be on time for his audience with the fucking Pope, and you want me to acknowledge him as being something special simply because 47% of the nation voted for him.

    you know what, fuck the 47% of the nation who voted for him.

    and fuck them harder if they do it again.

    the irony that you hope you’re missing in my writings is surely there. and its hermetically sealed with the venom thats laced with the contempt, hate, and vitrol.

    all these things were taught to me by the president who we will bury tonight.

    he taught us to hate our enemies. to constructively engage racists. to flip flop and fire striking air traffic controllers. to turn our backs on the AIDS crisis. and to bypass congress in order to run guns to nicaragua.

    yes there is a wall that must be torn down

    and if i have to fucking do it my own fucking self i will.

    but its not in berlin my friend.

    there is a wall right here in the land of the free and its like a plank in the eye of freedom that shines sparkling like excalubur and it must be removed

    never to return again.

    i respect your support of these mediocre men, but i bet if they were doctors you’d avoid them, if they were horses you’d bet against them, and if they were beauty contestants youd pity them.

    if they were pitchers one would have a curious change-up, and the other would have a hard time finding his way to the mound.

    and i bet you they wouldnt even make it to the show.

    but in the world of politics where image is everything and results are happy accidents you want to convince me that theyre all-stars and i just say no.

    and i do it respectfully, with good will, and best regards.

    makeout city + jaime + missie + popie