My Doonesbury Favorite: Mr. Butts: The Nation 11/9

Of all the characters in the last 40 years of Doonesbury, my personal favorite is Mr. Butts—and not just because he appeared on the cover of The Nation (Jan. 1, 1996).  Garry Trudeau has had lots of more compelling characters, but Mr. Butts in his own way was perfect: the smiling cigarette-man who was unfailingly cheerful about how cool it was for kids to smoke.

Mr. Butts crossed over from the comics to real life in 1994, when University of California tobacco researcher Dr. Stanton Glantz received a big Fedex box with the return address “Mr. Butts.” The box, as I reported in The Nation . . .
. . .continued at HERE

Boxer Won More Votes than 10 Tea Party Candidates: Nation 11/3

California Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer defeated challenger Carly Fiorina by a ten-point margin on Tuesday, winning a total of 3.8 million votes, more than the combined vote total of ten Tea Party senate candidates.

The Tea Party Senate candidates made big news, but they ran mostly in small states. Also, several lost.

. . . continued at HERE.

Legalizing Pot Fails in Calif.: The Nation 11/3

California’s initiative to legalize marijuana failed to win a majority at the polls Tuesday. Prop 19, which received 3.3 million votes but lost 54 percent to 46 percent, would have would have legalized possession and cultivation of marijuana and authorized cities and counties to regulate and tax commercial marijuana production and sales.
. . . continued at HERE

Why the Dems will win in Calif.: The Nation 11/1

When the votes are counted on Tuesday night in California, Democrats will easily sweep the top contests. Senator Barbara Boxer is likely to defeat challenger Carly Fiorina, 51-46 per cent (Nate Silver’s projection at, and last week’s California Field poll shows Democrat Jerry Brown ahead of Republican Meg Whitman in the gubernatorial race by 10 points.

Why are the Republicans doing so badly in California, when they are anticipating sweeping victories so many other places?

. . . Continued at HERE.

WikiLeaks and 9-11: The Nation 10/17

As WikiLeaks prepares to release 400,000 Iraq war documents, a former FBI agent argues that WikiLeaks could have prevented 9-11, if the website had been around in 2001.  . . . Continued at HERE.

Sarah Palin: Snubbed by Cal. GOP – The Nation 10/14

Sarah Palin is coming to California this weekend, but the state’s top Republican candidates, Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina, don’t want to bee sen with her.

. . .  The reason can be found in the new polls: most Californians don’t like Sarah Palin.  According to last week’s Field Poll, 69 percent of the state’s independent voters say they have an “unfavorable” impression of the former Alaska governor. . . . Continued at HERE.

Lennon Top 5: OC Weekly 10/9

On what would have been John Lennon’s 70th birthday, a list of my top five Lennon solo records–and they included audio and video links to Lennon’s performances of each: Audio and video HERE.
5. “God”:  “I was the Walrus, but now I’m John” . . .
4. “Imagine”: We’ve heard it a thousand times, but still. . .
3. “I’m Losing You”: the strongest song on “Double Fantasy” . . .
2. “Instant Karma”: “Who do you think you are, a superstar?”
1.  “Oh Yoko”: playful, passionate, and perfect.

Bob Dylan’s Defense of Lennon: Nation 10/8

How do you explain the value of a rock musician to the Immigration Service?  Bob Dylan tried, in his letter opposing the Nixon Administration’s move to deport John Lennon.  “John and Yoko,” Dylan wrote, “inspire and transcend and stimulate,” and thereby “help put an end to this mild dull taste of petty commercialism which is being passed off as artist art by the overpowering mass media.” story HERE;  Dylan’s letter HERE.