On Democrats and Republicans actually making a deal, the floundering Phillies, the flagging Phelps and the corpuscle-popping excitement of synchronized diving

Nothing lasts forever, unless you’re reading a book by Friedrich Nietzsche.
Take today, for instance. It soon will morph into tomorrow. And I can’t wait for tomorrow because I get better looking every day.
But before we bid adieu to today, let’s point out three sea changes it has wrought:
One, the Democrats and Republicans actually can agree on something besides their mutual distrust. Congressional leaders made a deal to continue funding the government through March 2013 – meaning that Uncle Sam won’t have to ask Mitt Romney for a loan.
Two, the Phillies finally admitted they have run down like a $2 alarm clock. After downshifting like Vin Diesel all season, they dumped salary by shipping Shane Victorino to the Dodgers and Hunter Pence to the Giants for household names only in their own houses. In the wake of the housecleaning, Woody Allen is playing right field and hitting fifth tonight.

Three, Michael Phelps has gone from swimming victory laps to circling the drain. He blew a gold medal in the 200-meter butterfly, but his silver was his record-tying 18th career medal. Like Nietzsche said, nothing is black and white — only beige.
Finally, as tomorrow prepares to dawn in a few, fleeting hours, synchronized diving now is all the rage in lunatic asylums. It has to be the most pointless endeavor since the Brits invented dwarf tossing.

Palestinians don’t see eye-to-eye with Romney over culture, triggering an eye-for-an-eye hissy fit

Mitt Romney might be better off on his overseas trip if he zipped his lips tighter than a thong on Kirstie Alley when she plops off the diet wagon.

First Romney offended the Brits and now he has angered the Palestinians while making nice-nice to Israel.
Romney told Jewish donors today that their culture is part of what has allowed them to be more economically successful than the Palestinians, outraging Palestinian leaders who suggested his comments were racist and out of touch with the realities of the Middle East.
Romney’s campaign later said his remarks were mischaracterized. But it was too late to un-ring that fire bell.
One reason why the Palestinians were angrier than Republicans stuck in an elevator with James Carville was because they blame the Israeli occupation as a major driving factor in the GDP gap between Israel and Palestine.
It would take a lot of infrastructure money to bridge that yawning cultural gap.

Performance (or the lack thereof), not racism, is the measuring stick tripping up Obama

For those of you who are not color blind, you may have noticed that Barack Obama is black.
Should this matter? Of course not.
However, there are some Democrats who claim that Obama’s whiter-shade-than-pale campaign this year is because of racism, claiming that some Americans and Republicans are about as comfortable with a multiethnic society as they are juggling porcupines.
One problem with that: What happened to all that bias in 2008 when Obama won the presidency? Did Obama’s hope-and-change magic turn them all, well, color blind?
I have more doubts than an atheist at the Vatican.
You can color Obama’s campaign travails this time. And that would be the color of money. I believe that would be green if memory serves me correctly. After all, it’s been awhile since I’ve seen any.
Obama’s White House automatic transmission misfired, shifting him from forward into reverse.
An economy floundering like a dolphin flopping from the Schuylkill River onto Penn Street is why Mitt Romney is even in the conversation.
Granted, now there’s a guy with money!

Mitt miffs Brits! Hey, it’s not like the guy told them to toss their tea and crumpets and their fish and chips off the London Bridge into the River Thames

Mitt Romney wanted to be the toast of London.
But now he’s toast in London.
And then London mayor Boris (why isn’t this guy the mayor of Moscow?) Johnson buttered that toast with disrespect.
At a boisterous pre-Olympics rally today, Johnson ridiculed Romney for questioning the city’s readiness for the Games.
“People are coming from around the world and they’re seeing us,” Johnson told an estimated 60,000 people who had gathered to mark the end of the Olympic Torch relay. “There are some people who are coming from around the world who don’t yet know about all the preparations we’ve done to get London ready in the last seven years. I heard there’s a guy called Mitt Romney who wants to know whether we’re ready. Are we ready? Yes we are!”
Then Johnson really put the Tower of London screws (figuratively, mind you) to Romney.
Johnson finished his appearance by leading the crowd in a chant of “Yes We Can” — Barack Obama’s famous and now infamous campaign slogan from 2008.
Of course, Romney was correct about “disconcerting” signs including concerns about the Games’ security firm. The Brits had to bring in the army because the private security firm afforded less protection than Dial Deodorant.
Then again, never go out of your way to offend your hosts. Especially if you’re running for president.
At least Romney didn’t defame the memory of Benny Hill.

Romney disavows Anglo-Saxon remarks but White House is on it like white on rice

The interesting thing about presidential campaigns is that when advisors speak, their words or context often are sprinkled with small fingers of doubt.

Then both sides scramble about like field mice … a constant game of stimulus and response … more spinning than the globe sitting on a top perched on a whirling merry-go-round.

No wonder we all get dizzy.

The U.K.’s Daily Telegraph reported today that that one of Mitt Romney’s advisers said: “We are part of an Anglo-Saxon heritage, and he feels that the special relationship is special. The White House doesn’t fully appreciate the shared history we have.”

While we live in a world of color, racism usually is black and white. So naturally that comment ignited accusations of racism – not least of all from Obama guru David Axelrod.

The implication from some people’s perspective was that Romney is better equipped to understand the relationship between London and the U.S. because he is of Anglo-Saxon heritage and Obama’s father was born, well, in Kenya.

The Romney campaign fully denied the Daily Telegraph report.

Mitt will be in London for the Olympics and likely won’t be rooting for Kenya to medal in anything.

Romney accuses Obama of classified security leaks

Mitt Romney is prepping for his first overseas trip of the campaign so it’s time to pretend that foreign policy isn’t all that foreign to him.
So he brought out the tanks and rolled over Barack Obama. Squashed him like a grape. Splat! Patton would have been so proud.
Romney today accused the president of trying to gain a political edge in by leaking classified information about the U.S. military raid that killed Osama bin Laden.
Romney picked the right time to throw a haymaker at Obama on national security issues. Romney did so during an address to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, whose elderly members apparently still nodded off.
Mitt claimed Obama jeopardizes America’s standing in the world in exchange for political gain.
Obama, who is hardly shy about playing the bin Laden trump card as a badge of honor, responded that he has zero tolerance for leaks because they are damaging to national security interests as well as to the room below an upstairs bathroom.

NCAA killing Penn State football slowly

The NCAA opted not to give Penn State football the death penalty today in the wake of the school’s despicable cover-up of Jerry Sandusky’s sexual predator crimes on and off campus.

Say what?

NCAA president Mark Emmert did kill the program. Not with a single gunshot. Not with a hangman’s noose. Not with a guillotine.

Rather, he is slowly bleeding Penn State football to death. Suddenly those pale white uniforms are a perfect fit.

The NCAA sanctions are unprecedented: a $60 million fine, a four-year bowl ban, capped scholarships at 20 below the normal limit for four years, five years’ probation, and vacated 112 wins – further mutilating Joe Paterno’s legacy.

The Big Ten also piled on, depriving Penn State of its share of conference bowl revenues over four years – another $13 million loss.

The Nittany Lions soon will have to schedule Albright, Kutztown and Fleetwood High to remain competitive. Home sellouts will join dinosaurs and flying water buffaloes as an extinct species.

Granted, football is inconsequential compared to the devastation Sandusky wrought – a decades-long crime spree aided and abetted by a university so myopic that it couldn’t see beyond football and the institution.

Two words about the anguishing Aurora shooting gallery: gun control

I am not generally a spiteful man. I’m gracious to even rude people, donate to the chess club, and mostly greet the world with open arms.

Of course, there are exceptions.

For instance, I would love to fricassee the gunman who opened fire in an Aurora, Colo., movie theater overnight and killed 12 people and injured 59 others.
How about dipping the guy in seal butter and dropping him into a polar bear’s cage?

In the saddest of ironies, the mass shootings took place at the opening of the Batrman movie The Dark Knight Rises.

A Dark Night indeed.

Whenever senseless tragedies such as this massacre leave us all screaming why? a sense of dread rises like summer heat off two-lane blacktop.

We can’t control nuts from going off.

But we can control the guns that wind up in their blood-stained hands.

Of course, we’ve squeezed that bullet from the chamber many times in the past.

And always missed the target.
God forbid someone shoot bullet holes into somebody’s freedom to bear arms.

The new battle cry of the Republic: You didn’t build that

Mitt Romney is going berserko over President Obama’s “you didn’t build that” comment. Even sharks don’t get that excited over blood in the water.

For the third straight day Romney ignored looking for his tax returns in his sock drawer and instead harped on Obama’s recent remarks about public infrastructure and individual initiative.

The Obama camp says the president was talking about the roads, bridges and education system that businesses rely on, not the businesses themselves.

The Romney camp says the president’s words weren’t an accident but rather a reflection of his hostility toward private business.

“It wasn’t a gaffe,” Romney said today. “It was his ideology. I don’t think the president understands what makes this country great.”
In case you were tied up sitting in traffic caused by road construction and missed it, this is what Obama said:
“If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”
Republicans construed those words as pouring a cauldron of boiling oil on entrepreneurs.
Now this is where it all gets silly and slightly confusing to those of you who never finished elementary school.
The Obama campaign’s “Truth Team” argues that the that in “you didn’t build that” clearly refers to roads and bridges that we count on the government to build and maintain.
Conservatives aren’t exactly swallowing that like Scotch.
Taking grammar to the mat, The Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto called the Obama campaign explanation “bunk, and not only because ‘business’ is more proximate to the pronoun ‘that’ and therefore its more likely antecedent. The Truth Team’s interpretation is ungrammatical. ‘Roads and bridges’ is plural; ‘that’ is singular. If the Team is right about Obama’s meaning, he should have said, ‘You didn’t build those.’”
Got that?
On such grave matters of import a nation’s future fate hangs like a curveball thrown by the Phillies’ bullpen.

Republicans a very taxing nightmare for Romney

I honestly don’t mean to be piling on Mitt Romney this week. That’s not how I roll. I always wanted to lead the team in solo tackles, make the big hit in the open field and make all the ESPN highlights.
Unfortunately, ESPN had yet to be invented when I was knocking Jim Thorpe on his keister.
But I would be remiss to merely sit by and sip lemonade while watching my parched lawn wither and die like Lapland’s medal hopes in the upcoming Olympic Games.
How can you ignore a growing chorus of Republican and conservative leaders calling on Romney to release several years’ worth of his federal tax returns?
Imagine! A mutiny even before the poor guy is officially nominated. Even Rodney Dangerfield got more respect. Stick it to Mitt seems to be the party line, which doesn’t seem to be such a dandy omen.
As you may have heard on Fox News, Romney would give up all his hair and teeth and possibly his children before giving up his tax returns. His tax info is locked down tighter than Scrooge.
In fact, now there are reports had Romney known such a furor would erupt over his tax returns, he never would have run for president – about the only thing he and conservative members of his party apparently have in common.
Evidently some Republicans are turning on their presumptive party nominee because they never liked the guy, thinking he’s compromised because he fostered a health care system in Massachusetts that was the precursor to the dreaded Obamacare, and thinking he’s too rich and privileged to sell free-market ideas to a middle class that rarely goes yachting.
“The fact is, no one likes the guy or believes in him,” said the campaign manager for a former Romney rival.” Look back at our 2008 primaries. Who did all the other candidates dislike? Romney. Look at this year. Who did all the other candidates dislike? Romney. No one wants Obama to win, but no one likes the guy who is running against him.”
This whole thing is getting messier than canoodling with Britney Spears.
And you all thought the Democrats were the dysfunctional party, huh?
Wouldn’t it be all the buzz on social and mainstream media if Romney suddenly quit the race, making next month’s GOP convention in Tampa a rowdier brawl for it all than the latest WWE Battle Royal?