The Focus on the Family prayed for a storm of biblical proportions to disrupt Barack Obama’s outdoor acceptance speech, and bless their little hearts, they got one. Unfortunately the storm they summoned was the ghost of Katrina who sent her younger brother Gustav up the same watery chute she terrorized 3 years ago, postponing the party the Republicans were holding 1200 miles north at the headwaters of the Mississippi. Oh sure, NOW they pay attention to New Orleans. Wonder why that is? Oh yeah, that’s right. Eight weeks. Election. Thankfully, Gustav did not live up to his sister’s reputation as world- class bitch, so things are returning to normal up here in St. Paul. But normal might not be enough. Right now, the GOP brand is less popular than skunk flavored pudding. If it were a movie, it would “star” Robert Davi and go straight to video. They’ve lost 3 consecutive special congressional elections, and everybody up here went out of their way to snicker past the bathroom in the Minneapolis- St Paul airport where Senator Larry Craig had his famous attack of restless leg syndrome. Not to mention this is where that bridge fell down over the Mississippi reminding Americans of the trillions we aren’t spending on infrastructure in order to prop up the Iraqi Oil Ministry. Add to that Bush’s approval rating which barely rises above stomach cramps, and you have to wonder if the President really chose to address the convention by satellite or whether John McCain convinced him that St. Paul had been quarantined by an outbreak of plague infested rats. Wouldn’t be too far from the truth.

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Trump's politics are not the problem.

The fiery Milwaukee Sheriff is on the shortlist to head the Department of Homeland Security.

By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.

Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

Public School Shakedown

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