Thursday, January 24, 2008

Edwards & MLK III

Here is a letter sent to John Edwards from Martin Luther King III after they met and talked.

January 20, 2008 The Honorable John R. Edwards 410 Market Street Suite 400 Chapel Hill, NC 27516 Dear Senator Edwards: It was good meeting with you yesterday and discussing my father's legacy. On the day when the nation will honor my father, I wanted to follow up with a personal note. There has been, and will continue to be, a lot of back and forth in the political arena over my father's legacy. It is a commentary on the breadth and depth of his impact that so many people want to claim his legacy. I am concerned that we do not blur the lines and obscure the truth about what he stood for: speaking up for justice for those who have no voice. I appreciate that on the major issues of health care, the environment, and the economy, you have framed the issues for what they are - a struggle for justice. And, you have almost single-handedly made poverty an issue in this election. You know as well as anyone that the 37 million people living in poverty have no voice in our system. They don't have lobbyists in Washington and they don't get to go to lunch with members of Congress. Speaking up for them is not politically convenient. But, it is the right thing to do. I am disturbed by how little attention the topic of economic justice has received during this campaign. I want to challenge all candidates to follow your lead, and speak up loudly and forcefully on the issue of economic justice in America. From our conversation yesterday, I know this is personal for you. I know you know what it means to come from nothing. I know you know what it means to get the opportunities you need to build a better life. And, I know you know that injustice is alive and well in America, because millions of people will never get the same opportunities you had. I believe that now, more than ever, we need a leader who wakes up every morning with the knowledge of that injustice in the forefront of their minds, and who knows that when we commit ourselves to a cause as a nation, we can make major strides in our own lifetimes. My father was not driven by an illusory vision of a perfect society. He was driven by the certain knowledge that when people of good faith and strong principles commit to making things better, we can change hearts, we can change minds, and we can change lives. So, I urge you: keep going. Ignore the pundits, who think this is a horserace, not a fight for justice. My dad was a fighter. As a friend and a believer in my father's words that injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, I say to you: keep going. Keep fighting. My father would be proud. Sincerely, Martin L. King, III

Monday, January 21, 2008

Hell of a Day

That was yesterday and it isn't going to get any better for days. If I was a superstitious man I'd say the universe was out to get us and Darcy agreed that it sure seemed like that. For the 6 months when she was mostly in the hospital and we weren't sure if she would live annoying crap kept happening, exactly when we (mostly me) didn't want to deal with it. Things like my very reliable Camry breaking down twice, which makes 3 times in the 11 years I've had it. And 3 or 4 annoying things would happen every week.

Yesterday was a doozie. Started out with Darcy waking up with a bad tooth-ache. She's had this for over a week and has been taking Amoxicillin, because she's immune compromised such things can be very dangerous. We went to the dentist last Monday and he couldn't find the infection. He thought the anti-biotic had taken care of it and it would just go away. So waking up with it swollen and hurting on Sunday was bad, especially since she had to be in the hospital Monday morning for an operation. So we went to the dentist's office and saw another of the 20 dentists they had there (I really hated the place as soon as we saw it). After waiting 2 hours the dentist comes in, takes one look at the x-rays, the very same ones the other doc saw on Monday, and immediately said she had a massive infection in a tooth that had a root canal done to it. That it called for major surgery because it was in the bone. At this point all we know is that one of these dentists is completely incompetent but don't know which one. Probably be both.

Earlier in the day we got a call from the home where my mom is staying, saying she went to the dentist with a tooth ache but it was so bad he sent her to the hospital for oral surgery. ARRGGHH!

Back to Darcy's dentist, who now refuses to operate until she has Darcy's doc sign off on it because she has so many serious conditions. This is standard procedure and Darcy had told them to get that last Monday when we were first in but the doc said he didn't need it and they hadn't done anything. I'm holding my temper, all I want at this point is to get out and never set foot in there again but Darcy is chewing them out big time. Her closing shot was “If anything bad happens it's your fault.” When we got to the car a little old Asian lady had followed us out and in broken English tried to say it was our fault they didn't have her doctor's permission to operate. At which point I lost it and started screaming at her at the top of my lungs, this didn't faze her at all and she just kept trying to insist it was our fault not theirs and I just drove off with her still talking. Her son must own the place.

So here it is Monday morning and Darcy has to head over at 7am to get her arm operated on, which should have been done 2 months ago but the docs blew it. They had put a fistula in her arm for the dialysis, but it needed 6 weeks to grow and they went ahead with emergency dialysis by putting a plastic tube down a vein in her neck. This is bad because it is more prone to infection than the fistula but we had no choice. By the end of November the vein surgeon wanted to operate again and move the fistula to a better position. It had already been 6 weeks at that point, now it's 2 months later and we'll have to wait for this operation to heal and the whole idea had been to get off the plastic tube as soon as humanly possible.

And I forgot to mention that when I went to turn the TV on so I could record the playoff games our very expensive HDTV was dead. This is a problem because the thing weighs a ton, I can't even lift half of it, it takes 2 VERY strong guys to move it with difficulty. In the meantime we can't watch any of our recorded shows and sitting down to watch TV at night is our time together since even going out to dinner is a major effort. The shows will keep recording and our DVR will just start erasing older shows automatically as the hard drive gets filled to capacity. And who the hell needs to deal with this now!

My mom, as of last night, was resting comfortably but one side of her face was swollen up. Her doc is Dr. Saran and I said that I hope he can wrap this up quickly. Darcy didn't laugh, she thinks the love of puns is a basic, male genetic flaw. But I'm going to have to go over to her hospital after Darcy gets out of surgery - they are going to keep her overnight - Darcy that is, Mom has already been kept overnight.

And I'm pretty sure a couple of emergency rushes are supposed to come in today at work. I'm sure they will call me when that happens.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

The Economy

Edwards is my man because he's the only one who talks about the 2 Americas. Rich Republicans don't even believe it exists, or if they do just don't care, they got theirs. The well paid, fat cat media doesn't relate to it either, but anyone living in that second America, the poor one, or the middle class one who is one disaster away from homelessness, knows exactly what he is talking about. And the worst cause of concern is health insurance, people pay a lot of money for it or don't have it at all and are worried that they will soon be in big trouble. But there isn't much point in paying a lot for health insurance because as soon as you come down with something serious they will refuse to cover you.

Here is something from Alternet:
Democrat John Edwards and Republican Mike Huckabee are the messengers of class politics in this election - the Huey Longs as I called them a while back. As Reuters today reports:

"Ask corporate lobbyists which presidential contender is most feared by their clients and the answer is almost always the same -- Democrat John Edwards...Edwards' tone and language on the campaign trail have increased business antipathy toward him. His stump speeches are peppered with attacks on "corporate greed" and warnings of "the destruction of the middle class.'...But this year Edwards is not alone. Republican candidate Mike Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas, sometimes also rails against corporate power and influence, tapping a populist current that lies just below the surface of U.S. politics."
On the Democratic side, Edwards class-based campaign has pushed candidates like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama to lately vent more populist themes (though Obama's underlying message remains class-averse). That stands in contrast to the Republican side, where the rest of the field against Huckabee is digging in promoting more Bush-style upper-class warfare.

Even if Edwards doesn't get the nomination he deserves a lot of credit for changing what the top 2 are talking about. More and more they keep taking Edwards' issues and using them as their own. I don't think either would have come out with major health insurance reform if Edwards hadn't done it first. Now they are stealing his talking points on the economy.

Edwards deserves the nomination and would get it if he got the publicity the other two got. But the corporate media doesn't like him because they know he will not be friendly and expand their markets. The reporters are all well paid and just can't relate to his message, plus they think Hillary and Obama are better stories. They may be right but because we have such a shoddy media (if not downright corrupt) the man who should be our next president isn't going to get the chance.

Although I wouldn't right him off yet, he's tough. Simply the fact that the corporate lobbyists are scared of him is enough reason to vote for him.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Nightmare Girl

I've got a new comic book coloring project. Been a while since I had a juicy one and this is a doozie - 120 page graphic novel, I'll be at this one for a while. I've got 3 pages done so far!

With all the stress of the last year my brain is having trouble focusing, I'll answer an email and the next thing I know I've spent 2 hours answering emails instead of working, not my usual pace but I'm so easily distracted these days. Also I'm just damn busy, Darcy took care of just about everything around the house, cleaning, shopping, cooking. Now I have to do all that, and take care of her and work my usual 14 hours a day. She is getting more independent as time goes on so I don't have to stay home until almost noon to get her ready for dialysis, she can do it for herself now, but she is not up to shopping or cleaning yet and I'm not good at either one of those. But I'll get past it, I always do. She's trying to chip in by doing some flat coloring for me but 3 days a week of dialysis really eats up a person's time.

The name of the comic is Nightmare Girl and the page here is the main character just before the nightmare begins, click on the image for a larger view. Creator and writer is Jimmy Leigh, who really has a lot invested in this project and pays me on time, which is very important since times are pretty tight right now. Here is Jimmy's Facebook page. The only thing of mine on there is the background image, which is page 1, scroll down for page 4 of the comic. Jimmy is quite a character, which is a necessary requirement for comic book creators. Duval Stowers is the artist, doing both pencils and inks. Man, is that a lot of work for 120 pages but he's a talented artist. Haven't met Duval yet, just talked on the phone a couple of times.

Here is the official Nightmare Girl web page. Not a lot on it because we are just getting started but it will fill up soon with sample pages. As for me, I've got to get to work, even though it's 10:15 pm. Sleep is for the weak!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Iowa 2008

The news people are just so excited and having so much fun today. Nothing they like better than a tight race to increase their ratings.

Just saw David Gregory interviewing Edwards and he said that Obama says that we need someone to unite us and not be divisive. My thought was fuck that shit!! I want the neocons crushed like the bugs they are so they all scurry back into the deep, dark, dank holes they should never have crawled out from. And so completely crushed they would be afraid to show their faces for decades.

Edwards said he couldn't disagree more, he sees his job as president is to fight for the American people against the corporate interests and those people are not going to just go away and you are not going to "nice" them away.

Awright, John!! Of course, that means he's done for even if he wins Iowa. The corporate media will HowardDean him big time and sink his entire candidacy. They will hate him more than any other candidate.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

The New Year

Here it is 2008. As I said in 2007 I'm continually amazed by these dates. We are actually in the 21st Century. Doesn't look anything like the artist's rendering of the future in magazines in the 50's and 60's. My granddaughter Ally will be 7 on January 7. This means she has never lived in a time when the yearly date didn't begin with a 2.

What I also said in 2007 was I hoped Darcy would still be around for this New Year because I could see she wasn't looking too good. Too many years past her lung transplant, all those heavy duty meds were taking their toll.

Little did I know how right I was. She spent close to all of the last 6 months in the hospital and got down to skin and bones, too weak to even lift herself up into a sitting position in a bed with railing. Twice I thought she only had a day or two left but she pulled through each time. She is now on dialysis because the drugs have completely destroyed her kidneys and has been home for 3 weeks. A week ago she surprised me by getting out of bed and walking to the living room by herself. I didn't even know she had done it until I walked in there and saw her on the couch.

So she has beat the odds again, as she has so many times in the past 15 years since her first diagnosis of a fatal lung disease. I think both of us are pretty sure she won't make it to 2009. The trick for times like these is to live in denial, don't think about it and just enjoy each day that you have. All those self help gurus got it all wrong, denial is a great thing and living in the moment really sucks. If you ever have to do it you will know what I mean.

But here is something to get the new year started off right: