Six things that I thought were outrageous in 2019
As 2019 wraps up, let’s look at some of the highlights from the year’s Outrage Columns:
Midwest Siberia? — The polar vortex really came down on the Midwest this week, and it was brutal. Windchills hit 70 below zero.
Some clever wag stated on Facebook that the weather forced cancellation of the performance of the musical “Hamilton” in Chicago, meaning once again “Brrrr kills Hamilton.”
Not sure if the weather or the pun is the outrage. (Feb. 1) Cussing on the stump — President Donald Trump and Democratic candidate Robert O’Rourke have of late used profanity during campaign speeches.
These are not open mic slips, but deliberate use of vulgarities, further defining deviancy down. We used to have basic standards of decency in this country.
Remember when you could go to a movie without hearing an f-word per minute?
The talk show host Michael Medved made a good point: Nobody ever came out of a movie and said, “Gee, I wish they’d used more f-words.”
Likewise, no one ever finished watching a presidential speech and said, “Gosh, I wish the president would have used ‘bull----’ more often.” (March 31) Are the walls closing in? — After Robert Mueller’s statement on Wednesday, the media have enough to keep the pot sufficiently stirred for another six months.
All the pols and pundits put their partisan spins on what Mueller said and on and on and on it goes. During the two years of nonstop Russian collusion talk on the cable news shows, someone put together a terrific montage of dozens of anchors, reporters and commentators saying, “The walls are closing in on Donald Trump.”
Well, guess what? He’s still here, and they’re still talking about the walls closing in, if not in those precise words.
Call me when something actually happens. (May 31) Computer’s always
right — In Don DeLillo’s satirical 1985 novel, “White Noise,” the main character’s son insists it is not raining because the weather forecast on the radio said it would not rain.
He was so consumed by media that he believed the radio over his own eyes.
That came to mind this week when I read about 100 people in Denver driving into a muddy pit because they followed directions for a detour on Google Maps.
Sometimes you just have to believe your own eyes, not what the computer says. (June 30) Higher and higher — Who says Republicans
and Democrats in Congress and the White House can’t agree on anything?
They agree to spend more of our money. Lots of it. No budget fights this year or next thanks to a two-year deal that keeps adding more to the debt and deficit.
Say what you want about the late Ross Perot; he was right about the national debt. (July 31) Morning baseball — The World Series games, as of Saturday, were average almost fours in length. They are lucky to get done by midnight on the East Coast.
How do they expect to interest kids in the game when most have to go to bed long before the last out?
Before television money dominated to the extent it does today, games were played in the afternoon. I remember our teachers telling us if we behaved and got all our work done, we could watch a couple of innings at the end of class.
That was a huge deal. Then Wayne the Bus Driver would have it on the radio on the way home, then you’d watch the rest of the game on TV at home.
Now it is hard even for adults to stay awake until the end in the East. (Oct. 31)
William P. Warford’s column appears every Tuesday, Friday and Sunday.
Puns, politicians (of course) and pundits make this year’s list