The current pause in the Hillary-Barack bout has opened the door for some rather interesting other news of late:
Some folks are fighting mad at Disneyland’s refurbishment of “It’s a Small World” to include licensed Disney characters among the international dolls, presumably to better facilitate Disney’s vertical, horizontal, and diagonal marketing strategies. Apparently Mickey and Minnie will not be included in the new “Small World”; Disney is mum so far on which licensed properties will be included. Maybe Goofy will become an Australian singing dingo? Bloggers are having a field day, including one set of lyrics changed to “…it’s a mall world.” This is not the first time Disney preservationists have tried to save park “artifacts,” although no one is protesting the billion-dollar redo of the less-than-successful California Adventure Park. Nor have I heard any banter to bring back Tomorrowland’s “Captain EO” attraction featuring Michael Jackson.
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Much like a Shakespearian tragedy, the Iraq war recently crossed the five-year mark and 4,000th U.S. serviceperson’s death within days of one another. As the war grinds on, some things change. You may recall that at the war’s onset the Dixie Chicks spoke out in opposition and were promptly blacklisted by radio stations nationwide. The Dixie Chicks are back and doing quite well, thank you. Remember all the invective against France for not joining our invasion of Baghdad, including renaming French Fries to Freedom Fries? A couple of weeks ago, a French company won a multi-billion dollar U.S. Air Force contract to build aerial refuelers. The French and their fries are back and doing quite well, thank you.
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Speaking of doing well, if you are like our household, you recently got a letter from the IRS telling you about your impending “economic stimulus.” Leave it to our brave 537 elected officials in DC to rain hundreds of dollars from the sky to you and me in an election year. What the IRS letter neglected to mention is that every dollar will come from new debt – growing an already horrendous ’08-’09 $400 billion deficit. Since unborn generations are funding our so called “stimulation” (hey tots, thanks for your generosity!), why only $600? Why can’t Uncle Sam pony up $6,000, or $60,000 or $6 million stimulation? Some good news. If you are caught in a relationship where your partner chronically runs up credit card debt, you are no longer being FINANCIALLY ABUSED. You are being ECONOMICALLY STIMULATED.
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Speaking of debt, John McCain describes himself as a “Reagan Republican,” a popular mantel for many GOP politicos in DC who have been at the forefront of running up our immense national debt. I checked Reagan’s First Inaugural Presidential Address, delivered on January 20, 1981: “For decades, we have piled deficit upon deficit, mortgaging our future and our children’s future for the temporary convenience of the present. To continue this long trend is to guarantee tremendous social, cultural, political, and economic upheavals. You and I, as individuals, can, by borrowing, live beyond our means but only for a limited period of time. Why, then, should we think that collectively, as a nation, we are not bound by the same limitation?”
Right on, Dutch! Are any of the soldiers in the GOP Red Ink Brigade listening?
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John McCain made a major foreign policy speech in Los Angeles last week, and he keeps comparing Iraq to Vietnam. Would someone tap him on the shoulder and let him know that the Leader of the Free World, our current Commander-in-Chief and McCain “Endorser One,” visited Vietnam in November 2006? Someone should also mention that, as I recall, we primarily fought in Vietnam to stop Communism from landing on the shores of Long Beach. Although we lost Saigon in 1975, the Berlin Wall came down only 14 years later. John, we won the Cold War despite our travails in Vietnam.
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On a lighter note, the Dodgers pulled a brilliant move by playing a retro game against the Red Sox in the storied Coliseum to commemorate their 50th anniversary in LA. The good news is that attendance of 115,300 is believed to be the largest crowd ever to see a baseball game. The bad news is that the Dodgers were losing 7-1 by the 7th inning and as I watched on TV, the stands were emptying. By the 8th inning it looked like Death Valley. Think Blue no doubt also set a record for most fans ever to bail on their team and leave a baseball game early. “Think Exit.” (I recall being at a Dodger game years ago when Don Sutton had a no-hitter going into the 8th and some people were leaving early to beat the traffic.)
No hits brings us full circle back to “It’s a Small World.” The ride opened at the NY World’s Fair in 1964 and was transplanted to Disneyland in 1966 after the Fair closed. Maybe I was just way too old (mid-teens) the first time I saw “Small World,” but it never worked for me and the soundtrack is downright maddening. I note that there is no dentist office on Disneyland’s Main Street, so for me “Small World” fills in the gap. Perhaps in its reincarnation, “Small World’s” water canal that floats visitors through the attraction could be named “Root”?