Roberts to Obama: It’s A Big Fucking Tax Deal!

Who knew that Chief Justice Roberts secretly wanted to be a congressman? Because at the heart of his majority opinion is where he changed out of his jurist robes into his legislator’s costume.  How else can you explain what happened Thursday as the court ruled to uphold the constitutionality of the misnamed Affordable Care Act by finding the mandate is only a mandate if it is a mandated tax?

Roberts did a ctrl h to the law replacing the repeated word ‘penalty’ with the constitutionally approved word ‘tax’.  And like magic the judicial branch has grown its own legislative branch.

But wait…there’s more! Obama himself argued that his mandate was not a tax:

And during the first opening oral arguments the Supremes were trying to ascertain if the mandate indeed was a mere penalty or really a tax.

This little bit of debate was key to the entire case before the Supremes because the Anti-Injunction Act prevents lawsuits before a tax is paid. Taxpayers must pay the imposed tax to have standing to sue against the tax. Obama-care’s penalties taxes are not due until 2014. If the mandate is a tax there is no case and the suit is tossed out.

So, team Obama argued it is not a tax and the court accepted it to be not a tax so the case could move forward to have Roberts decide that, yes, indeed, it is a tax.

If your head is spinning it means you are following along nicely. It you feel the ground moving, that is because the Founding Fathers are following along and spinning in their respective graves.

Yes, it was that kind of week Thursday was.

Some of you (okay, the one of you who does read this) may have seen some esteemed fellow conservative commentators commentate that this ruling was indeed the work of genius as it puts Obama-care into realm of the largest tax increase in history and ties the Democrats to this tax increase while preserving limits to the Commerce Clause.


First off who in their right, center-right, center, left of center minds do not know that Democrats love increasing taxes? Any tax increase is never taxed enough or high enough for them.

And limiting the Commerce Clause by removing the limits as long as the expansion is a tax levy–even if such wording and debating states the exact opposite of a tax levy. That is one limit to be honored.

Now, this blogger has in the past over-used cleaning the litter box as a metaphor for political studies. As I sift out the pee clumps and cat shit I know there is not going to be any gold or diamonds found in the box after I am done. Somehow our esteemed brighter lights of commentary think they have found gold and diamonds amid the piss and shit in this litter box filled by Chief Justice Roberts’ opinion.

There ain’t any.

This ruling is a loss, a defeat, a crushing blow to our side who believes in limited government under a strict constitution where each branch is separate and plays in their own litter box for the good of the republic and its citizens. There is no other way this litter sifter sees it.

So, what happens next?

I don’t know. But if past is prologue we are stuck with this badly decided ruling for maybe 100 years or so.  I am not being overly pessimistic just resolutely realistic.

Dred Scott took a civil war to overturn it.

Plessy which made segregation the law of the land took 6o years before Brown overturned it.

Roe is still enforcing a faux right to abortion since 1972 despite it being a cornerstone of conservative campaigning against.

So how long do you really think it will take before the Affordable Care Act ruling is overturned by a future court or legislative act?

And if it is by legislative act that this is overturned and a new suit is brought before the Supremes, will some future Chief Justice effect the rules of Roberts and ctrl h it to mean whatever the court wants it to mean to fit into their opinion?

By then maybe our liberty and freedoms too will have come under the SCOTUS editor and be easily replaced with a keystroke.

That is why this is even a bigger fucking deal than that master of vice Vice President Joe Biden made it out to be.

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Mr. Gray-Glo Goes Progressive (Lenses)

Mr. Gray-Glo is on his newest adventure: learning how to walk while wearing progressive lenses.

Yes, this is my next adventure as the perpetual conveyor belt carries me forth to that great dumpster beyond.

Now, when I was told about progressive eyeglasses, I thought that meant they would mug an one per-center and take his money to pay for my lenses. Nothing could be further from that; progressives are those bifocals without the tell-tale lines between lenses. That way, you can were them without giving away your age–as if the gray hair, wheezing up the stairs, and constant pee breaks didn’t.

I knew it was past time to finally see an optometrist. You can only get so far with cheaters from the dollar store.

But Gray-Glo is not one to rush these things…my eye exam was back in February during President’s Day (the only day Carter and Obama are linked anywhere near Washington and Lincoln). I finally picked out my frames a couple of weeks ago and yesterday picked them up.

The good: I didn’t realize how unclear far was until I put them on. Not that I mistaken mailboxes for raccoons (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

The bad: I didn’t realize how much I would have to retrain my brain to get used to the them.

Lets just say that Gray-Glo has motion sickness after a few hours wearing them. And trying to learn how to switch from far to close for reading is a new challenge. And the computer monitor…

The optometrist cautioned me against wearing them while driving. Pedestrians can thank me later.

So I re-super-glued the cracked frame of my dollar store readers; these will be kept in reserve until the day comes when I finally learn how to navigate this new vision world.

At least I am not walking like John Cleese’s Ministry of Silly Walks…at least this progressive bifocal blogger does not think so.

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Mr. Gray-Glo’s Commercial Debut

Last week your humble maker of typos was invited by Team Romney to be in a campaign commercial specially for Ohioans.

I was–no snickering–talent.

I was happy to do it but surprised by the invite as during the primary this blogger posted his endorsement of Rick Santorum.  But Team Romney are making great strides in uniting the clans–I mean bringing in the various Republican factions. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul son of libertarian leaning presidential candidate Ron is on board with Team Romney. Mr. Gray-Glo, too, is on board to recover America from the changeless hopelessness brought on by the Obama era.

Because the content of the ad was embargoed, I could not post about it. Embargoed is a great word to use for many different circumstances: I would have paid my bills but the economy was embargoed by Obama. See?

Tim O’Toole, the producer/videographer/line giver, asked me to hold off posting (as if anyone really reads you–The Voice) until the commercial is released. They wanted the content to hit Obama by surprise.

This is one huge difference this video star (there will be no living with him now–The Voice) notices between Team Romney’s campaign and the failed McCain campaign way back in ’08; Romney is Fast and Furious in getting his message out and rebutting Obama. Any time Obama’s teleprompter makes a gaffe, Team Romney is on it and has a commercial released.

And so it went with Obama’s comment that the “private sector is doing fine” coming on the anniversary of Recovery Summer.

Two years ago the president was in Ohio touting his amazing Summer of Stimulus, he just forgot the recovery part.

And that is the message of the Recover Our Country video I and other Romney Team supporters made last week.

Quite a few of the men and women in the montage are from the conservative grassroots organization Cuyahoga Valley Republicans. We were founded in July 2009 as we saw where Obama was leading our nation.

The video is here:

Recover Our Country

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Father’s Day

Father’s Day has come and is now almost gone.

Today’s Rasmussen Report email says only 17% think this is an important holiday.

Father’s Day still ranks pretty low in terms of the nation’s holidays, but Americans continue to feel strongly that being a father is the most important role a man can fill.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that only 17% of American Adults consider Father’s Day one of America’s most important holidays. Twenty-three percent (23%) rate it as one of the least important holidays, while 59% place it somewhere in between the two.

At least Father’s Day rates higher than congress.

Because today was spent visiting my dad and Mrs. G’s dad, The Kid decided it would be best if we celebrated during Father’s Day Eve. She came by and made BBQ Chicken, cowboy beans, and roasted corn on the cob for me. This dad ate well and The Kid is one great cook. Even stuff I wouldn’t normally eat she makes well.

Each Father’s Day with my dad is blessing as he survived a near fatal heart attack in ’08 and had a quadruple by-pass. Four years later with a change in his diet facilitated by his ‘nurse’, my mom, and a commitment to exercise he is probably in better health than most of us.

My mom is another great cook of the old fashioned Polish variety. She cooks like the apocalypse is upon us and we may run out of food. I kid but not by much.

We had chicken soup, grilled sweet Italian sausage with peppers, pulled pork sandwiches, more cowboy beans, macaroni salad, cole slaw, and fruit squares…we will survive the current zombie-pocalypse well fed.

I don’t know where my dad gets his will power to keep his weight down.

My dad is a Pittsburgh Steelers fan. Been one his entire life. During Browns-Steelers games, I find it best to not be around him. At least the Indians gives us a common team to root for together.

Usually, I will get him an Indians shirt or cap for Father’s Day. But this year, I found a “DAD” Steeler’s Shirt and although it pained me to fund the enemy, I bought it for him. No, there wasn’t a sulfur smell as I touched the shirt.

We then watched the Indians inter-league game against the Pirates. And even though he is also a Pirate’s fan (somewhat) he rooted for the Tribe with me. And he napped, too.

So did you, says the Kid.

Later we went to my father-in-laws assisted living apartment.

And another feast for fathers was in store there.

Mrs. G’s dad is crazy for ham. And watching his face as the ham was carved reminded me of Ralphie’s Red Ryder BB Gun yearning.

And when his ham sandwich was handed to him he muttered an “oh my”.

Time at both places seemed to fly-by like that scene from Thornton Wilder’s My Town as Emily Webb relives her 12th birthday.

That must be the key to this day. Food for dads and then sitting around joshing about the times we have had.


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Rafting Down My Stream of Unconsciousness…

Hi campers, I guess it’s time for Gray-Glo to unmoor his raft and let my mind float down this crooked river…

Spring cleaning the cranium clutter has not worked out as well as I planned. Oh, well, my loss is usually my sole reader’s gain.

This Venus flirtation is in transition as Venus the planet named for The Goddess of Love has crossed the Sun’s face. This is the last time this mortal and you fellow mortals could witness her transit across Sol until the next century. Since this mortal has failed this version of his coil, he is sure to return to try to figure out the mystery, again. And in the next life, maybe get to experience Venus not from afar…

So, now Venus has transitioned from the evening star to her better known morning star self.

I hope none of you went blind trying to see her first hand in the setting sun.

Being here on the North Coast—marketing but not a way of lifestyle—the Transit of Venus was not worth venturing out among those who sought her with welder’s goggles, pieces of posterboard with pin-pricked holes, or telescopes at Edgewater Park.

Being almost a geek (I work in wireless or Science Fiction as I tell others) I found Venus’ transition on the internet from a NASA site from Hawaii and watch it on my tablet while sipping coffee at a café. And later while watching the Indian’s game. Amazing how many ways we can wisely waste time today.

Yes, like blogging a post no one will read, mocks The Voice.

June is warming and comfortable enough for me to get my bicycle out. One day maybe I will have my mind bluetoothed so my mindlessness while riding will transcript to a post.

And have evidence of your mindless nothingness, says The Voice.

The National Park Towpath is dustier than this infrequent rider recalls. For some reason little flying bugs love to hover head high and it’s usually too late by the time I see them to avoid them. Remember, keep mouth shut and eyes squinted.

Usually I ride without plugging my ears into anything like a ballgame or music because my preference is the soundtrack of the park, the birds and frogs croaking, the sound of tires on the dirt, and my own heart beating. It is very important for those of us who do not normally exercise to hear our heart beating. When you no longer can hear that thumpa-thump…it’s time to stop pedaling.

Ray Bradbury died this week.

Now that was a man who knew how to make his dreams and imaginings into printed word.

His Mars may not exist in reality, but he was the best tour guide for a Mars of his mind as any you will meet.

His Venus was like Seattle and London, a planet of endless rain. It drove those there with such madness that they would look skyward with open mouths to slowly drown from the deluge.

From Venus of beauty to Venus of madness; quite a transition as my raft slowly drifts with a paddle-less passenger.

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Inevitable Inevitability: Romney Is The Nominee

All My Ex’s Live in Texas could be Romney’s song of the day as his victory in the Texas primary puts him over the needed delegate count of 1144.

His ex’s he left in the Texan dust are Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, and Ron Paul. These guys weren’t even close; Santorum came in second with 265 to Romney’s 1191 delegates.

Romney’s ex’s combined delegates are 540 which is less than half of his total haul.  Makes one wonder (that would be this one blogger) what kind of influence they may have over the platform and other issues like prime-time speaking roles at the convention.

And about that convention, well, it will now be conventional as in a scripted and controlled formality of a nominating convention. Those who bet on a brokered back room wheeler dealer of a show can toss those tickets in the trash recycle bin.

The Paulist? Yeah, what about the Paulist? In chats and emails these hardcore Ron Paul supporters believe there are actual hidden and secret delegates that actually are his.

Gingrich and his I Love The ’90s nostalgia tour is no more. I hope the GOP has one of those invisible fence type collars on him in hopes of reining him in when his mouth and brain moves from rhetoric against Obama into rhetoric against vulture capitalism like he did during the primary campaign against Romney.

Santorum has the most to gain politically in the future by shoring up one of Romney’s apparently weaker stances—Social Issues. Santorum can help Romney here by supporting him and thus giving his conservative social seal of approval to Romney. He also can be the rod that takes the heat lightning strikes that come from the mainstream media away from Romney as it pertains to socially conservative stands.

Santorum could help Romney in swing states like Ohio where the primary was close and Santorum flourished in regions and areas home to the more socially conservative members of the base. Romney cannot afford to have these voters sit this one out because of their doubts about him. Santorum alleviating these doubts or at least tempering them can be the difference between Ohio going Romney Red versus Obama Blue.

And an Obama Blue Ohio will mean the blues for the rest of this republic.

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Remembering Those Without Markers

Today is Memorial Day, it is one day we try to set aside to remember those Americans who lost their lives in battles.

Graves of those who served are decorated with small American flags usually placed by volunteers like Boy Scouts and veteran groups.

Marketing has dubbed this as the official start of the Summer Season, whatever that means.

I don’t fault anyone who uses this Holiday to cook-out, or shop, do yard work or other home projects. Baseball games both sandlot and Major League are played. Some like me will even have to work for some of time today.

But regardless of if you march in a parade or watch one from the sidewalk, or just stay home, or go out about the town and country; you may see something in the news or while driving to the mall that will make you think about those who died keeping us and this country made from us and for us safe and with liberty and freedom.

The Kid used to live in Danville, Kentucky. On many trips there to visit her, I would pass Camp Nelson National Cemetery. It is a beautifully landscaped place lined with white grave markers that always reminded me of a little Arlington. I always seem to think about Camp Nelson when Memorial Day is here.

We always try to recover our fallen from the field of battle. Sometimes it is not possible. In other nations are small plots of land where our fellow Americans are buried. They may be out of our sight, but not from our minds. They have markers.

But others like those lost at sea do not have a visible resting place. They have no white stone marker to be graced by a flag today. Let us keep them, too, in our minds.

When you drive past a VFW, you see an American flag flying high. Near it, usually beneath it flies another flag; this one is black and stark. It is the POW/MIA flag proclaiming “You Are Not Forgotten”.

This flag is the marker for those men and women who have not returned from their war. They have no other status than Missing in Action; some are suspected as Prisoners of War who for some reason were not released by their capturers.

They have no marker other than the black flag that flies for them at VFW and other similar posts who honor veterans.

Let us not forget those who have no marker and have no flag.

“You Are Not Forgotten”

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Gray-Glo Caught In a Three Car Some

Yesterday while driving home to let the dogs out for lunch, yours truly was involved in a little traffic accident. While going east on 82 traffic slowed to a stop because a ‘county’ van was shadowing some of our not so upright citizens of the county lock up as they picked litter up on both sides of the roadway.

Mr. Gray-Glo’s truck was stopped behind a full-sized semi as that driver waited for the westbound traffic to clear enough so he could pass the van. 82 is a mere two-lane road here.

I couldn’t see around the semi as it passed the van and had no way of knowing if vehicles were coming down 82. So, I slowed and waited behind the van waiting for my chance to pass when..THUD…I was rocked. My truck was hit by a big red caddy.

Being who I am (no one else wants the gig) I raised my arms in a WTF gesture as I came out of my truck. The woman driver of the caddy that rear-ended my Ridgeline apparently is a body language expert as she responded to my gesture by pointing to the white beetle behind her.

It wasn’t me. It was her! And she’s in trouble!

At that point the young girl who was driving the veedub and started this highway bumper pool by hitting the caddy brokedown sobbing into her cell phone.

No one was injured.

My truck had no damage that I could see and I pulled onto the lawn off the road.

The caddy was damaged in the front where it went under my bumper and hit the tow hitch bending its license plate; the rear end had more damage to it. The beetle looked like a cartoon bug after being smashed: the front end crumbled, both headlights popped out and their chrome rings askew. Worse for the veedub was that its coolant was pouring out.

Being the only resident, I called the cops to report the accident. Mr. Gray-Glo learned the hard way that police reports are required. Years ago, in another life with another car, I was hit from behind and thought all was cool if the two folks involved traded insurance info and let the pros handle the details. Boy was I wrong. When I went to renew my driver’s license later that year or next, the BMV said there was a flag raised on my license for an unreported accident. Which leads to the obvious philosophical question: if something is not reported, how does The State know it happened? Especially the BMV?

There was a time when we citizens took care of these matters ourselves without The State knowing or being involved.

B-ville’s finest shows up, took our info, took photos of the cars, and arranged a tow for the dead bug.

The officer told us the report will post on-line later that day or the next and we could get it for FREE. Yippee, free stuff from The State upfront as they pick your pocket from the rear.

A little post-script or epilogue.

Today the first voice-mail on Gray-Glo’s phone was from a chiropractor touting her services to help me rehab from my recent auto accident.

Yes, at least someone knew what to do with free stuff from The State.

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Doing Some Spring Cleaning…Roadie Potato Dinner at Rock and Roll HoF

Seems I left a few posts hanging back there and this is as good a time as any to clean out the cranial attic.

Roadie Potato Dinner at Rock and Roll HoF

The day the news broke that a few Occupy Cleveland anarchist with unoccupied brains were caught attempting to blow up the bridge spanning The Cuyahoga Valley National Park, The Kid invited me as her plus one to the Roadie Recognition Event at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Roadies are what they call their volunteers.

The Kid is working on her Masters in Library Science and volunteers at the new Rock and Roll HoF Museum Library and Archives.

Our evening began with some weirdness.

I arrived at her place to find The Kid outside trying to corral a ferret near her front steps.

Yes, a ferret, a rodent was cornered in the flower bed’s leftover autumn leaves. The creature seemed tame enough and was more than likely someone’s pet who escaped.

But it’s a rodent! I explained as I summoned out my innermost Monk. She was busy posting photos of it on her facebook hoping to see if someone could identify it and advise her on what to do.

We eventually caught it and placed the creature inside a box while waiting on the police to show up.

The cop arrived just as we spotted her neighbors, mother and daughters, quickly walking toward us. It was their ferret who escaped.

Fortunately, this guy has hand sanitizer in his truck and was able to de-rodent-ize myself.

Mr. Gray-Glo did not disappoint The Kid; I wore my black Poly Styrene Oh Bondage, Up Yours! t-shirt and leather jacket.

The Rock ‘n Roll HoF is a museum about Rock and Roll! The music of sex and drugs and drunken binges!

Well, this event had all the rockin’ of any other corporate all-hands meeting I have ever attended.

Here I was at the rockin’ RnR HoF sitting at table watching executives hand out honors to the roadies doing volunteer work. Each quarter I sit through almost the exact same type of meeting at my wireless company. Maybe the hall needs to borrow Alice Cooper’s boa constrictor to hand out the awards.

The Kid introduced me to her library mates and she mentioned how the Wainstead All Night audio collection in the library has me on it.

The food was really good. It was billed as a potato dinner but they served baked potatoes with loads of toppings you can add, different salads including pro and anti pasta, Italian wedding soup served in glass coffee mugs and pastry with my favorite, cheese cake.

Of course, you cannot take Mr. Gray-Glo anywhere without him making a few faux pas. First I knocked over and spilled my Buckler n/a (props to HoF for having such a cool non-alcoholic brew) when I tangled my feet in the too long table cloth. Then, as I was filling my plate with food, I ran out of space. That meant the butter for my roll was hidden under a lettuce leaf. So, in typical Gray-Glo fashion, when I stabbed the salad with my fork I also pierced the two butter pats and put both into my mouth. Imagine my taste-bud’s surprise as they received butter infused lettuce with Italian dressing.

The roadies do great work and their volunteer hours add up and mean thousands of dollars in kind donation.

Terry Stewart the HoF President and CEO and Brian Kenyon the Executive Vice President and CFO described in detail how well the finances of the hall are managed. The HoF is in the black.

Yes, it did include a balance sheet explanation of the hall’s financial shape.

It was a just like being in those Xerox commercials.

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Sometimes The Mundane Slog Causes a Complex Clog

Mr. Gray-Glo has been a bit lax lately in posting.

So, what else is new? one of the voices in my head asks. Sometimes it is like The McLaughlin Group inside there.

And especially when it comes to the news of the day and politics which is my usual slog of choice. But the last few have dealt with The Mundane Slog of Daily Life or as what  Harvey Pekar said “Ordinary life is pretty complex stuff.”

And it is.

Unlike Pekar, I resist sharing and baring so much or fear too much of what goes on in Mr. Gray-Glo’s world. Mostly because almost all the people in my circle are real and very private people and would not like having their lives published on the World Wide Web for the one or two who reads this site and even more mostly (caution English Major exploding head) you will see exactly how mundane my slog is.

The unexamined life is not worth living, supposedly Socrates said. But what if examining your own puts you asleep? And when you reach the end and your life flashes in replay before your eyes, are the commercials zapped out like a DVR would?

Deep thoughts from one wading in the shallow end of the pool.

Mr. Gray-Glo also needs to take the fifth every now and then as sometimes his slog gets more complex than even his biographer would like.Well, his publisher would like more complexity to increase the hits and his agent would love to sell it. But since all are part and parcel of me and I have controlling shares of this blog they lost out.  It was quite the boardroom ruckus as we all argued; I am glad the truck windows were up so it looked like I was just singing along to the CD.

And that is the source of my laxity or what is commonly known as writer’s block.

You mean it isn’t all lack of talent or simple laziness? asks The Voice.

Sometimes I wonder how much should I share. And if I don’t reveal am I lying not only to you and maybe myself?

I am not lying to you just because I do not come clean and spill my blood guts and soul like Mick Jagger:

If I could stick my pen in my heart
I would spill it all over the stage
Would it satisfy ya, would it slide on by ya
Would you think the boy is strange? Ain’t he strange?
If I could win ya, if I could sing ya
A love song so divine
Would it be enough for your cheating heart
If I broke down and cried? If I cried?
I said I know it’s only rock ‘n roll but I like it
I know it’s only rock ‘n roll but I like it, like it, yes, I do
Oh, well, I like it, I like it, I like it
I said can’t you see that this old boy has been lonely?

If I could stick a knife in my heart
Suicide right on stage
Would it be enough for your teenage lust
Would it help to ease the pain? Ease your brain?
If I could dig down deep in my heart
Feelings would flood on the page
Would it satisfy ya, would it slide on by ya
Would ya think the boy’s insane? He’s insane
I said I know it’s only rock ‘n roll but I like it
I said I know it’s only rock ‘n roll but I like it, like it, yes, I do
Oh, well, I like it, I like it, I like it
I said can’t you see that this old boy has been a lonely?

And do ya think that you’re the only girl around?
I bet you think that you’re the only woman in town

I said I know it’s only rock ‘n roll but I like it
I said I know it’s only rock ‘n roll but I like it
I said I know it’s only rock ‘n roll but I like it, like it, yes, I do
Oh, well, I like it, I like it. I like it…

This isn’t rock and roll but it is my life here.

And it is one mundane slog sometimes with complex stuff.

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