Sunday, October 25, 2009

Soupy Sales RIP, Dick Cheney's Abusive Legacy

 Glenn Greenwald
Adele Stan
Clarence Page

"I don't do Halloween. It's not that I'm afraid, it's just… Folks, I can't do it. Some four-year-old from Chicago might show up with a razor blade." - Rush Limbaugh
"We have to tolerate the inequality as a way to achieve greater prosperity and opportunity for all." - Goldman Sachs Advisor
"A deeper problem is what the flap reveals about Team Obama, which seems to be more comfortable with campaigning than governing."  - Clarence Page

oh, how I love to get a pie in the face...
I just found out that Soupy Sales died this week. When I was a kid I enjoyed watching his show the most. It was so much better than Sheriff John or Captain Kangaroo, and was the precursor to shows like Rocky and Bullwinkle. It was the funniest because he had the silliest puppets and the show like White Fang and Black Tooth, and would always end with him getting a pie thrown in his face. Ahh, those were the best of times, we dreamed of all the adults who would benefit from a pie in the face, a fervent set of dreams that I continue to carry into my old age. "Sales was the sweetest and goofiest performer. Outfitted in a sweater and bow tie, his elastic features sporting a nonstop smile, as if he were laughing at his last or next joke, Sales was a Mr. Rogers for kids who didn't watch PBS."

He did a lot of old vaudeville shtick, never told dirty jokes, but we swore that he was drunk a few times... The trick he got in trouble with the network was: "He did make trouble for himself on New Year's Day 1965, when, annoyed by having to work on a holiday, he impishly instructed kids to tiptoe into their parents' bedroom, take out "green pieces of paper with pictures of guys with beards" and send them to his New York station. The punch line: "And you know what I'm gonna send you? A postcard from Puerto Rico." For that he got suspended. He said that the kids were hipper than his bosses: many sent him Monopoly money."

I worked for a time with Barbara Scott, the daughter of Bill Scott, who was the voice of Bullwinkle, Dudley Do-Right, and Captain Crunch, to name a few. She was one of the funniest people I've ever known. She told me that their family would sit down together for dinner and it became a pun contest, with her father writing down the best ones later for his characters. And, he too, got in trouble for pulling a prank on the air, from Wikipedia: "When first shown on NBC, the cartoons were introduced by a Bullwinkle puppet, voiced by Bill Scott, who would often lampoon celebrities, current events, and especially Walt Disney, whose program Disneyland was the next show on the schedule. On one occasion, "Bullwinkle" encouraged children to pull the tuning knobs off the TV set. "In that way," explained Bullwinkle, "we'll be sure to be with you next week!" After the network received complaints from parents of an estimated 20,000 child viewers who apparently followed Bullwinkle's suggestion, Bullwinkle told the children the following week to put the knobs back on with glue "and make it stick!" 

There doesn't seem to be anything as creative for kids on the tube today, especially with the Disney Channel funneling their child actors into these cloyingly cute half-hour templates, where they're trained to tell jokes and act the same way, with incredibly bland results.

So, goodbye Mr. Sales, I'm sure that even in heaven you'll receive that pie in the face, because ya love to keep 'em laughin'...

There is something Greek about the Cheney family’s obsessive persecution of President Obama...
So says Lee Siegal in the Daily Beast: "First Dick Cheney, on three separate occasions, declares that Obama is making the country more vulnerable to terrorist attack, accuses the president of using the economic crisis as a pretext to expand the government, and agrees with a conservative talking head that Obama is “telegraphing weakness” to the terrorists... Then his eldest daughter, Liz, proposes on Fox News that in the wake of Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize, the president send the mother of a fallen soldier to Oslo to accept the award on behalf of the U.S. military—as if it was Obama, and not her father, whose stupidity and greed has sent thousands of Americans to their death in Iraq. And recently, Cheney’s youngest daughter, Mary, announced the creation of an international consulting firm that will, no doubt, facilitate any and all opposition to the slightest Obama initiative."

Personally, I think Dick Cheney is stuck in a rut. He has to make a living now by giving speeches, and he is so emotionally and intellectually shallow that he can only harp on the same subjects over and over again. Glad I didn't buy a season ticket... The whole family is to the right of Atilla the Hun, even, surprisingly, the youngest gay daughter, who has come up with her own brainstorm to cash in on the family legacy. He is stewing in his own bitter juices, instead of a grateful country singing his praises, he is getting criticism and the changing of many policies that he instituted and is proud of. I'd be bitter too if I had to read in the newspaper what a bloodthirsty monster I had been, making all the wrong decisions that cost our country so many lives...

The part I like about Cheney is that he is so grumpy, I can relate. He is in pain all of the time, addicted to surgeries like so many others are addicted to the pain from getting tattoos. When you are in pain a lot you tend to lash out at others and never apologize for your behavior. He is the perfect candidate for a pie in the face.

Here is a man who is so enamored with secrecy that he had the escape tunnel from the Vice President's office under the Potomac River refurbished, asking the Obama administration to declassify document to prove his point on water-boarding. He is criticizing Obama for not making a quick decision on sending more troops to Afghanistan, when he made similar decisions based on false information planted by Iranian Intelligence and trusted faulty information obtained from prisoners by torture above information obtained by other means.

The part I dislike the most about Cheney is his bullying style that doesn't allow questioning. It's obvious that he bullied his children because his daughter Liz has adopted that style and taken it a step further. Its a shame that she also is passing this same form of abuse on to her five children, building a family legacy that, unfortunately, will endure...

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