The Last Word

Issue #474

March 2014

St. Joe’s links to right-wing websites
You know about my campaign to expose Bishop Brossart High School. But St. Joseph School—a Catholic elementary school in Cold Spring—is like Brossart Jr. attended St. Joe!s "or o#er a year. t was as disastrous as you might imagine—through no "ault o" my own$ except "or the "act that didn!t "ight back hard enough. !m sure some St. Joe!s partisans will read this and say %ust showed up one day and began intentionally pro#oking the school. &m$ no. 'hat!s not what happened. (ong story short) 'he school is now including links to "ar*right webpages on its own website. Chie" among them is one that the school labels as +,eligious (iberty.- But it turns out that it!s actually a page set up by the .iocese o" Co#ington that attacks the /bama administration!s popular policy on insurance co#erage o" contracepti#es. 'he website "alsely claims that /bama!s policy co#ers contracepti#es that induce abortion. t!s "alse because—by definition—contracepti#es don!t induce abortion. " they did$ they!d be aborti"acients$ not contracepti#es. /bama!s policy doesn!t co#er aborti"acients$ and it ne#er did. So what the diocese says on its website is "alse. n short$ it!s a partisan website that has nothing to do with religious "reedom and e#erything to do with com"orting the 0all Street 12. 'he webpage is part o" the "ar*right +3ray$ (earn$ 4ct- sign campaign promoted by a""luent 5orthern 6entucky residents. 5e#er trust a website that bellyaches about +radical secularism gripping our society.St. Joe!s also links to a website published by the &nited States Con"erence o" Catholic Bishops that boasts about their court brie"s supporting Hobby (obby!s right*wing lawsuit against the 4""ordable Care 4ct. 'he site also brags o" the bishops! support "or antigay legislation. 7y "ormer school!s promotion o" "ar* right websites seems to go against 3ope 8rancis!s teachings on economic matters. 'he ponti"" has recently championed economic e9uality. But the a"orementioned webpages accomplish nothing positi#e "or the ::2. 'hroughout my years at St. Joe!s and Brossart$ the predominant ideology espoused by the school was one o" whining about how un"air e#erything was "or the rich. 4nyone who wasn!t "inancially secure was called la;y right to their "ace. 0hy would publicly express so much worry about whether or not a Catholic school!s website "ollows papal teachings< concern mysel" with it because o" the utter disregard "or separation o" church and state that has long "lourished locally. /"tentimes$ the church is the state. /n the other hand$ the ,S looks unkindly upon tax*exempt religious bodies engaging in partisan politics. Churches can emit ,epublican dogma all they like—but they can!t keep their religious tax exemption i" they do. St. Joe!s and Brossart turned li"e "or me into a train wreck. 4n absolute$ complete train wreck. 8or years a"terward$ no less. Cline was bad$ but think it was in = th grade at St. Joe!s when things became %ust unsalvageable. >#erybody knows about what went on in those years$ but there is a co#er*up o" who was behind it and the astounding e""orts they made to keep it going. 4lso$ it takes a special kind o" asshole to be so "ixated on harassing me that they were reminded o" it when they saw a beer commercial when they were watching '? at home$ and then started blabbing about it at school the next day. 0hy in the world was all o" this deemed acceptable< 4t most other schools$ somebody would ha#e pulled them aside and asked$ + Is there something wrong with you?!- But St. Joe!s was di""erent.

" you saw what experienced there$ you!d think it!s the most ridiculous thing you!#e e#er seen—and !m not exaggerating. /nly somebody who is thoroughly out o" their mind would "ind it acceptable. Back to the main topic o" this article$ can only conclude by linking you to this cartoon$ which per"ectly summari;es the school!s mentality...

Disgust against rossart grows
0ith the "ocus on St. Joe!s in this ish$ don!t think we can stop keeping an eye on Bishop Brossart High School in 4lexandria. 'hat!s our bag$ and it should be yours too. /ur e""orts against this embattled plutocracy still seem to paying o"" slowly but surely. Someone modi"ied the +"ootnotes- o" the school!s 0ikipedia entry by adding$ +it!s basically a 5a;i death camp.- 4"ter that was remo#ed$ they added$ +it makes the students want to kill themsel#es on a regular basis.say our e""orts seem to be paying o""$ because don!t know "or sure i" those obser#ations were actually inspired by our work. 'he 0ikipedia remarks were probably posted by a more recent Brossart #ictim who independently came to their own conclusion that Brossart suxx 7c@luxx. Brossart is "aring poorly e#en on its own 8acebook page. 'he page lets "olks rate the school on a scale o" 1 to A stars. /ut o" 1B people who ha#e rated Brossart$ A ha#e gi#en the school only one star. Brossart seems to ha#e permanently lost the con"idence o" o#er CA2 o" its alumni. t!s probably more than that$ because people don!t usually look "or a 8acebook page unless it!s "or something they like. n a sane world$ Brossart would ha#e winked out o" existence long ago.

!ni"ation #o"ination
'hey don!t make cartoons like they used to. remember growing up in the early D=Es and watching the a"ternoon block o" animation on Channel 1:. F'hose in the know call it 0G G.H Constant scheduling changes treated me to the likes o" Looney Tunes$ The Flintstones$ Scooby-Doo$ Su er Friends$ and—best o" all—Tom !nd "erry. 'he real loony tunes were whoe#er it was at Channel 1: who decided to periodically preempt these classic toonies with new animated specials that were nothing but glori"ied in"omercials "or shitty toys that would probably break the "irst time you played with them. >arly cartoons weren!t made "or '?. 'hey were shown in mo#ie theaters and were geared primarily to adults. /ne o" the most shocking moments o" my childhood was when was watching an old Looney Tunes or #errie #elodies cartoon on '?$ and a man in the cartoon declared$ +.ammitILooney Tunes was also the home o" Yosemite Sam. >#ery so o"ten$ ha#e a day where "eel like talking about Yosemite Sam all day. /nce went on a road trip to #isit Yosemite 5ational 3ark—"or which Yosemite Sam was named. @ot that< %ust mentioned Yosemite Sam. 7aybe !ll mention Yosemite Sam again later on. ?iewing my toonies became a daily ritual. n that era$ wasn!t allowed to watch them on the '? in the li#ing room$ so had to go in the den and watch them through a ghostly signal on a portable set. 'his was a constructi#e e#iction$ i" you will. don!t think the oldsters came right out and said couldn!t watch cartoons in the li#ing room$ but my "amily members made so much noise there that %ust ga#e up. >#entually$ howe#er$ my mom disallowed me "rom watching the "irst hour o" my cartoons altogether. But Channel 1:—with its endless preemptions—played a greater role than anyone in saying couldn!t watch them. 'hat was when threatened to regress to watching Sesame Street o#er on Channel AB instead. + !ll go back to Sesame StreetI- would "amously warn. knew that was taboo because was too old "or Sesame Street. So sometimes during a commercial break$ when nobody was looking$ !d switch the '? o#er to Channel AB "or a "ew seconds and snicker to mysel" as this prohibition was #iolated. Su er Friends in"luenced me deeply. ,emember how Su er Friends included brie" segments "eaturing sa"ety tips< 'he one remember most "ondly was the one in which a person cut their "inger opening a can o" tennis balls. Su er Friends included cra"t tips too. /ne o" these segments showed how to make a piggy bank out o" an empty milk carton. But this probably didn!t go o#er too well$ because wouldn!t the milk carton start stinking pretty soon< was always warned ne#er to keep old milk cartons$ because they would

stink—and there were enough things around already that would stink. 'hen there was the legendary (asso o" 'ruth dream. Su er Friends inspired me so much that once had a dream where was watching Su er Friends and 0onder 0oman threw a temper tantrum because her (asso o" 'ruth broke when she tried using it to bring down a #illain!s airplane. Her "ace turned red and steam shot out her ears$ like 8red 8lintstone. 'his was around the same time had a dream that was at a hotel where saw ,onald ,eagan walking down the hall with smoke coming out o" his pants.

4"ter seeing it in so many cartoons$ used to try to see i" it was possible to get angry enough "or steam to shoot out my own ears. n Ath grade$ was so "rustrated by an extremely di""icult literature test that clenched my teeth and tried getting steam to shoot out my ears during class—all to no a#ail. Yosemite Sam. 3lus$ does anybody remember the bumpers Channel 1: used "or commercial breaks during its a"ternoon toons< 'hey used to display a still slide o" Tom !nd "erry characters o#er a black background while a simple xylophone tune played. 'hen they changed it to a Tom !nd "erry clip o#er a shimmering yellow background that "eatured an electronic music bed. >#en today$ my tastes in '? lean towards animation. The Sim sons is one o" #ery "ew shows still watch. t e#en sur#i#ed my attempt to boycott '? o#er the Scott +,ecords- Brown debacle. But other cartoons these days are sad indeed compared to past o""erings.

$rouble at the sheri%%’s o%%ice&
0e!#e recei#ed another uncon"irmed story o" erratic beha#ior by a public o""icial—much like that o" the local legislator who reportedly stuck her "inger into a tub o" chip dip at the supermarket so she could taste*test it$ or the lawmaker in another state who allegedly had a meltdown on a computer bulletin board system because a Starcade contestant didn!t pick Bagman. 'his story is a biggie. t surrounds a 'ea 3arty sheri""$ but !m not going to say what county or %urisdiction$ because can!t con"irm it. (ike always say) 'rust but #eri"y—and #ote but /ccupy. 4ccording to this report$ the sheri"" barely e#en knows how to dri#e. /ne morning$ he got into his cruiser$ and instead o" backing out o" the parking lot$ he lurched the car "orward and crashed into a signpost. 'hen he got into the cruiser parked next to it and did the same thing. 'hen he got into a third cruiser and—you guessed itI— did the e$act same thing! guess he doesn!t know how to put a car in re#erse. 4"ter wrecking the third car$ he got out and launched a torrent o" racial slurs at the car. 'his language was a disgrace to the whole county. 4nd he cost the taxpayers dearly by managing to wreck C county*owned #ehicles in the span o" only a "ew minutes. /ne day$ when his o""icial #ehicle got a "lat tire$ the ,epublican lawman allegedly decided to dri#e on the

rims. 'his created a shower o" sparks that could be seen "or blocks. 'he car ended up being completely destroyed. 4nd—on one o" the coldest days o" the year—he reportedly showed up at a tra""ic accident wearing only thermal underpants and a Cincinnati ,eds cap. 4ccording to this report$ he also regularly misuses his o""icial #ehicle "or personal errands$ and apparently dro#e it to an adult bookstore miles away. 'he sheri"" reportedly made up goo"y nicknames "or se#eral police chie"s in his county and abused the police radio by addressing them with these nicknames. He also allegedly used the tip o" his gun to pry open a .r 3epper can. t was also said that he ordered deputies to spy on a personal "oe by hiding in a storm sewer across the street "rom the man!s house. t reminds me o" The Dukes %f &a''ard when ,osco and >nos clumsily staked out the .uke "arm. 4ll told$ the county is now paying "or at least B ruined sheri"" cruisers$ gasoline that was wosted during the top cop!s pornography purchases$ and a whole lotta embarrassment. 4ll because it was deemed so important to elect a 'ea 3arty idiot as sheri"". But like said$ this anecdote may be apocryphal. t may ha#e been made up by a disgruntled deputy or ci#ilian. " someone made up this story$ it %ust goes to show how much the sheri"" has issed everyone off. /n the other hand$ it!s usually not our side that makes up shit. >#en the once*mighty () #inutes has laid it on thick with the yellow %ournalism lately—with its discredited stories recently about Bengha;i and disability bene"its—so !m not going to make heroic e""orts to de"end the C 4*backed 'ea 3arty. 8air is "air. 3lus$ the "act that a school district in 'exas where a principal called students communists %ust s9uandered JKE million on a grandiose "ootball stadium that!s so structurally unsound that nobody can use it is not a good testament to the 'ea 3arty!s "iscal management skills. 0e need sheri""s who ha#e the guts to ser#e the people. 0e need sheri""s who will re"use to en"orce "oreclosures. 5ot 'ea 3arty obstructionists who only ser#e the 12 titans.

'eo(le ate su(er"arket %oo# without (a)ing %or it
You probably know the story o" the local politician contaminating the chip dip at the grocery store to see i" it was "resh. But something #ery similar happened a "ew days ago at 6roger in Belle#ue) saw a woman who was about AE years old who must ha#e had a real case o" the munchies$ because she kept eating e#erything in sight as she was "illing her shopping cart. saw her in the produce aisle pulling grapes o"" a prepackaged bunch and de#ouring them. 'hen saw her in the bakery section grabbing cookies out o" the boxes that had been packaged at the store and eating those. 'he woman was bi;arre. She spent "ore#er in each aisle$ and she was constantly chomping on "ood that she "ound. She sure knows how to cut her cost at 6rogerI F5o$ these were not "ree samples.H Some people on the nternet try %usti"ying this beha#ior$ and they e#en admit doing it themsel#es. But others are horri"ied by this conduct. /ne shopper suspected that a couple they saw buying tuna salad at a 0hole 8oods ate it in the store$ le"t the container on a shel"$ and didn!t pay "or it. 4 customer o" a di""erent store witnessed a man sei;ing a hardboiled egg o"" the salad bar at a supermarket and gulping it down whole. 4nd it!s not %ust 4merica where this happens. 4 British store security company stated$ +0e "ind baskets littered with empty wrappers and hal"*eaten bunches o" grapes. 'his is the"t.'hen there!s the story o" a customer who wol"ed down an entire raw steak at a grocery store. But at least he paid "or it by ha#ing the cashier ring up the empty package. /n the other hand$ some ha#e said it was %usti"ied to steal "rom certain stores—citing the "act that some

stores ha#e stolen "rom workers by not paying them or committing child labor #iolations. Call it rough %ustice$ i" you will. >#en at supermarket distribution centers$ workers ha#e "ound that their "ellow employees ha#e eaten products that were supposed to be shipped to stores. 'hey e#en took the pri;es "rom cereal boxes. 0hat!s next< Sampling toilet paper<

! *oa#s Scholar’s %a+e cities
,oads Scholaring is a boring hobby that nobody wants to hear about...said no person$ e#er. used to think invented ,oads Scholaring—the pastime o" #isiting roads %ust because they!re roads—but the nternets sure has set me straight. Scholaring has been around since be"ore was e#en watching *arney + Friends—which is a mighty long time$ considering *arney + Friends didn!t debut until was 1=. 0ith the St. (ouis roadmeet looming this month$ it!s time to ask this important 9uestion) .o people pop< Just %okingI 4ctually$ our 9uestion is this) 0hat are the best cities "or Scholaring< 0elp$ we!#e consulted the nonexistent Last !or" #oo$ %& 'ecor"s $ which uses se#eral criteria. 0e can base it on which cities ha#e the most elaborate road "eatures$ %udged by how the roads interact with each other or with other "eatures such as buildings$ ri#ers$ and terrain. Cincinnati gets high marks$ but most o" the good stu"" is con"ined to downtown or the 7ill Creek #alley. By this measure$ the best ma%or 4merican cities might be Fin this orderH) 5ew York$ 0ashington$ Chicago$ and 3ittsburgh. 'he Big 4pple and the nation!s capital 9uali"y because they ha#e so many o" the goodies that big 5ortheastern cities are known "or. Chicago is listed because o" its multile#el streets. 3ittsburgh has its tunnels. /n the other hand$ when #isited 7ilwaukee last year$ was surprised that city had as many interesting road "eatures as it did. 8or large "oreign cities$ 'okyo may be the hands*down winner. @oogle 7aps re#eals—among other things—a "reeway directly o#er the path o" a ri#er. You can also %udge the best Scholaring cities by other methods. .etroit sounds appealing because o" the many blocks o" abandoned lots$ which the city is now turning into urban "armland. 4n interesting international candidate is ?enice. .oes ?enice ha#e any roads at all< t has canals and alleys$ but it doesn!t seem to ha#e roads. t has small pa#ed spaces that might be re"erred to as streets$ but that!s like how Sesame Street is called a street e#en though nobody uses it "or tra#el. (e"t7aps would ha#e a "ield day drawing all o" ?enice!s densely packed canals and "ootbridges. Yep$ !m sure most tourists who #isit ?enice go there "or the ,oads Scholaring. @oogle Street ?iew is my main alternati#e to real Scholaring. bet the tourism industry hates, hates, hates Street ?iewI 7aybe someday there will be a de#ice that lets people Scholar "rom home "or real. 3eople could control a robot e9uipped with a #ideo link. 4 right*wing businessman in 4tlanta built a robot that waddles up the street and harasses homeless people. " technology is ad#anced enough "or ignoble passions such as that$ it should be ad#anced enough "or more intelligent pursuits. " only was rich instead o" cool.

,hen the 2-line bug bit
Since !m in the mood "or talking about D=Es things—imagine thatI—here!s a memory that!ll send you shrieking into the night) the 4tari B4S C L*line lockup bug. " you e#er programmed in 4tari B4S C$ you probably know blasted well what !m talking about. t was "eared by all programmers and lo#ed by none. 'he L*line bug worked like so) Sometimes i" you were writing a program$ the computer would "ree;e up. 'he only key that worked was SYSTEM RESET— %ust used the Sesame Street "ont like the 4tari re"erence guide did—but a"ter you pressed it$ the computer would "ree;e

again a"ter typing another line. t was hopeless. 'here was no way out except turning your computer o"" and losing all your work. t was common to see amateur programmers sitting at the computer in their den$ moaning in "rustration$ with %ust the word +,>4.Y- on the screen a"ter this bug hit. thought was the only person ali#e who remembers it. But surprisingly$ 0ikipedia mentions it CE years later. t turns out that it occurred each time you remo#ed a multiple o" LAK bytes "rom the program you were working on. 4tari B4S C could not handle that$ because 4tari computers at the time had a "etish "or the number LAK. Your computer went to bed e#ery night "antasi;ing o" a partner sporting a giant tattoo o" the number LAK. >#erything the early D=Es 4tari did re#ol#ed around that number. am serious about this. 'here was LAK o" e#erything. Because you were always deleting items "rom your program$ this "atal bug occurred a lot. t plagued the original 4tari B4S C cartridge that was popular at the time—and it got even worse in the next #ersion o" 4tari B4S C$ which was built*in on machines like the =EEG(. 4tari kept producing =EEG(!s with this "aulty #ersion o" B4S C long a"ter they became aware o" this de"ect. F t was related to a di""erent bug that reportedly ruined programs by gi#ing a +string not dimensioned- error "or the program line where the string was dimensioned. 0hen this happened$ the program became trashed beyond repair.H (ater$ 4tari "inally released a B4S C cartridge that corrected the L*line lockup. But you had to order it at a cost o" J1A plus JL.AE "or shipping. 4tari wouldn!t replace its own de"ecti#e product "or "ree. guess they thought it was more lucrati#e to knowingly sell a buggy #ersion o" B4S C and make "olks pay "or a new #ersion i" they wanted it "ixed. 3lus$ ordering the new #ersion took at least A weeks "or deli#ery. Yosemite Sam. still ha#e my old 4tari =EE—replete with original B4S C cartridge. ha#en!t used it in 1M years$ and !m terri"ied to now$ because know many o" its chips are "ried. 'here!s nothing more "rightening than an 4tari kill screen. t!s the D=Es e9ui#alent o" the Blue Screen o" .eath. /n the other hand$ the 4tari =EE couldn!t be much less dependable than some o" the modern 0indows machines. 'hese days$ when a computer gets to be more than about K months old$ it becomes so slow that you can barely e#en use it. 4nd i" it!s o#er L years old like mine is$ get used to ha#ing to do at least one dirty restart per week—unless you li#e in an area like mine where the power goes out all the time$ which does the dirty restart "or youI
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