Wednesday, January 11, 2006


'The Alito Bandito'

Remember this little guy? This here is a genuine artifact of pop culture: The Frito Bandito pencil eraser.

Been thinking about it this week just because of the similar sound of "Alito" bein' in the news so much. And because of another rhyme with another Supreme Court nominee:

Back in the day, I, or helped write, an anti-Robert Bork editorial for my college paper. The headline? "Bork the dork." It drove the Reagan youth mad -- MAD, I tell you! Bwah-ha-ha!

About Alito:

Some if not all of the righty-rights are bitchin' about the bloviating going on so far in the hearings. Which tells me most of the righty-rights, if they've read any recent political history at all, have looked only at freshman government textbooks.

Mark at 4 Rows Back has a particularly "light" commentary on the subject, calling the hearings a "waste of time."


To him and others: Oh, come on. Are all y'all really that naive? The hearings have become a venue for each party to shore up their base. Quit actin' so dadgum high and mighty -- and surprised.

Mark's wrong, too, I think, about "what Americans want."

What we want, apparently, is the status quo, which is what you get when everybody is "split" on virtually every issue, which we are. Shame, and dangerous, that we remain at this collective indecision with so much at stake and with such buffoons in power.

About The Frito Bandito:

Latino backlash in the 1970s caused Frito Lay to discontinue the Frito Bandito character. You could join The Frito Bandito Club and get cool Frito Bandito Club stuff!

I remember him well. I used to confuse him with Gene Shalit, the then-wild-haired and still-mustachioed movie reviewer on "The Today Show."

A few years ago, Dr. ER, who also has fond memories of The Frito Bandito, and I were in a junque shop in Arkansas where we saw a Frito Bandito pencil eraser like the one pictured at top, for, like $5.

And we didn't buy it. And have no idea why. And we regret it. We both had one when we were little. (Dr. ER remembers chewin' off his little holstered pistoles). And we have looked for one in every junque shop we've been in ever since, with no success.

So, anybody has one to sell, or knows where we can get one, let me know.


bloviating - Umm, a little too much 'E' for me.
I only said it's a waste of time because the outcome is already known. No surprises.

We have to go through the process no matter how boring. That's the way it works.

Actually, it's a good thing. They need to show the entire hearing on all three major networks. Nothing would change rank and file Democrats into Republicans more effectively than watching Senators Kennedy, Biden, Shumer, and Feingold make utter fools of themselves with their unfounded and easily disproven accusations.

Senator Feinstein did a good job with her questioning. I'll give her that.
Thing thing about Alito's name that's been driving me batty is that it's easy to sing the old Boz Scaggs hit "Lido Shuffle" as the "Alito Shuffle." Maddening, it is ...
Nick, that's the spirit!
Funny that righty-rughts always say that about the rank-and-file: They think that if Dems would only just SEE things the way righty-rights SEE them, why, they'd quit and jine up with the Repubs! That's a sing of fundamentalist nonthinking.

As for Kennedy: He may be a drunk, he may have gotten away with manslaughter, he may be a fat asshole.

But he gives voice to political minorities like no one else can, so I'm glad that he is where he is. And the fact that he drives righty-rights nuts is just gravy.
Kennedy anecdote:

Back in the day, in the mid-late '80s when I was a congressional intern, a story wildfired itself across the "intern community" about the hapless girl intern who bore Ted's wrath because ...

She brought him the wrong file on a vote deadline? No.

She mishandled a constituent, causing the senator personal embarrassment? No?

She took advantage of one too many free drink at some lobbiest function and slept with a Repub staffer? No.

Because she brought him the wrong brand of orange juice.

Total jerk.

But I'm glad he's where he is. He is perfect for Massachusetts. It do take all kinds.
Alito wouldn't even be a known name around the country if that dang Harriet Miers had gotten a better haircut!
Market price for the Frito Bandito eraser is $16 to $21 on eBay. None are available right now. Two have sold within the last month.

Market Price for Alioto Bandito is somewhat more than I might care to pay. However, no one ever really know what a person will do once the mantle of the supreme court is placed on their shoulders.

1. What Supreme Court Chief Justice interpreted the Constituion to mean that the SCOTUS was supreme abiter of what the Constitution ment.
2. What SCOTUS Chief Justice admitted in a court opinon that he personally had watched police under his command beat prisoners in a jail basement with a rubber hose?
1. John Marshal.
2. Earl Warren?
The point of course is neither of those two guys when they were appointed and confirmed were thought to be the kind of Justices that they turned out to be. It is a crap shoot for both sides, and yet it may be more important even than electing a President. What a Paradox.
Gotta agree with drlobojo on that one. Seems once a justice gets on the court he/she forgets what side he/she is supposed to be on.
Well, Mark, rather, I think that once ANYONE -- Justice Cletus Thomas excepted -- gets ON the court, they realize that that shit is a lot harder than they thought it was, and they begin their entire Americanness anew.
Yeah, that Clarence Thomas sure does think like a conservative white guy, doesn't he??
I'm just sayin' he has acted just like one woulda thought he woulda acted.
Excuse me, but the whole point of selecting a justice is that they are not supposed to have a "side" other than making sure the law upholds the Constitution. They are not on the top bench to be Republican or Democrat. Especially since their terms can be expected to be lengthy, they rise above partisan politics.
But they do not rise above ideology. Not in either of our lifetimes. Ideology, more than ever, defines partisanship. And it's not a bad thing, if ideology drives one's view of how best this country can proceed with this great experiment. :-)
Interesting NYTimes editorial Thursday on Alito hearings:
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