Jim Austin's Vermonter at Large
Jim Austin
Jim Austin
is a freelance writer from Putney, Vermont.

His previous columns are archived HERE.

Posted 05.31.03


Bits & pieces to gladden the heart

Lebron James will be the number one pick in the NBA draft. He isn't quite finished with high school yet but has recently signed a $90,000,000 deal with Nike.

Lebron hasn't negotiated his pay for actually playing basketball yet. If George gives him an ambassadorship, maybe he'll pay off the federal deficit.

This just in: "Texas legislature bans recognition of gay marriage." Maybe Vermont should ban recognition of belt buckles bigger than a dinner plate and IQs smaller than fifty. That'll fix em'.

I think I have found the Weapons of Mass Destruction that everyone has been looking for. It's also known as the Bush Tax Cut.

The latest bit of news that wasn't emphasized by a Rose Garden signing photo op was the fact that the tax cut doesn't include the working poor. Those poor schmucks were receiving a $400 child tax rebate but at the last minute all families with incomes between $10,000 and $26,000 will get squat.

Just after Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill was fired, a report that he had submitted was blocked from ever seeing the official light of day. In it, Mr. O'Neill estimated that our country is on the fast track to bankruptcy.

Annika Sorenstan became the first woman to play in a PGA event since Babe Didrekson in 1945. Her most vocal critic was top pro Vijay Singh who said she shouldn't be allowed to play and hoped she wouldn't make the cut.

This from a man of color who, but for the determination of civil rights advocates, would have been caddying for PGA members instead of enriching himself by millions per year. What an idiot.

At this writing twenty Americans have been killed and dozens injured since George announced that the war with Iraq was over.

We have conquered Iraq but haven't found the weapons that were supposed to be poised to destroy Iraq's neighbors. Neither have we found any evidence that Hussein was sending terrorists to summer camp or that he even associated with terrorists.

We haven't found Hussein for that matter or Osama, now that you mention it. What has this administration found? They found out that when they rule the House and the Senate they can pretty much do what they want.

The Democratic candidates have been crawling out of their little hidey holes lately and throwing some crazy proposals at the electorate. Dean wants to have universal health care for everyone under twenty-five. Great idea but aren't they the healthy ones?

Our Leader is off to Poland, Jordan, and France today. The summit in France should be a bit icy. Bush was once quoted as saying: "You know, the trouble with the French is that they don't have a word for entrepreneur." Did he really say that? Probably not. It would be poor strategy.

The fiftieth anniversary of the Hillary/Norgay ascent of Everest was last week. Nowadays, Mount Everest is scaled by seniors, juniors, blind climbers, and one-armed mountaineers. I wonder how many could have done it with equipment circa 1953?

The San Antonio Spurs will meet the New Jersey Nets in the NBA Championship series. Bet it all on the Spurs in 7. New Jersey will be fine. Their Devils are plucking the Ducks of Anaheim and will soon be in possession of Lord Stanley's Cup.

One small request of the Spurs; please don't foul Jason Kidd. That insipid little kiss that he blows before every foul shot is beyond irritating.

Favorite line from "Family Guy": Dad says to daughter "Hey, my Alpha-bits spell OOOOO!"

"Those are Cheerios, Dad."