Elliot: Your coal, coal heart


Sen. Ted Cruz speaks to the audience at Cedar Rapids on Saturday, Dec. 5 2015. Cruz is currently inching up in Republican polls behind front-runner Donald Trump in Iowa. (The Daily Iowan/Peter Kim)

Beau Elliot

[email protected]

Oh, dear me, the mammoth coal company Peabody has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. I mean, I’m as broken-hearted as a country song. I am currently crying my tears into my pool of crocodiles.

(Please don’t tell PETA I have a crocodile pool. It’s what I have instead of an NCAA basketball pool, because I have just as good chance of winning. Maybe better, bettor. I mean, I happen to have a croc named Villanova.)

As the great American philosopher John Prine tried to tell us many years ago, using a song called “Paradise”:

“And daddy, won’t you take me back to Muhlenberg County/
Down by the Green River where Paradise lay/
Well, I’m sorry my son, but you’re too late in asking/
Mister Peabody’s coal train has hauled it away”

The coal biz can get down and dirty at times —  I mean, the stuff’s underground — and burning it as a fuel can be worse. We all know that, but we burn it anyway including right in the middle of Iowa City; hmm), because long ago we married electricity and gadgets and it’s just too painful to contemplate divorce.

I suppose they could be something worse to burn than coal, but I’m not sure what it would be. Maybe dung, maybe not. I’m no expert. We could ask an expert, say, Donald Trump, who seems to know a whole lot about dung or at least flinging it.

Speaking of flinging stuff,  there is Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas (we’re tempted to say no new Texans, but some of you won’t get the allusion — allusion alert, sportswriters) who, as solicitor general defended Texas’ attempted ban of dildoes.

No, really.

Well, OK, Texas was actually attempting to ban the sale and advertising of dildoes and other ilk. But you have to wonder: What is it about far right-wingers that they don’t want government in people’s lives, except when it comes to sex?

I mean, what is it about other people’s sex lives, which should be private and their own concern (unless a nonconsensual crime is committed) that so engages right-wingers’ attention? They don’t have any sex lives, so nobody else should, either?

RELATED: No clue, like the flu

Anyway, I’ve noticed that Cruz in his presidential campaign has not emphasized this aspect of his colorful career; in fact, he has not mentioned it, to my knowledge.

Perhaps the great anti-dildo grass-roots revolution wasn’t quite such a grand movement as it was banged up to be. (So many bad jokes here, so little time.)

And speaking of flinging stuff, Trump recently went on a rampage about U.S. military funding for Saudi Arabia, Japan, Germany, and South Korea. It’s not so interesting as courageously fighting didoes, but it is wrong.

According to the folks at FactCheck, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Germany, and South Korea don’t receive any U.S. military-aid spending, though Saudi Arabia got $10,000 for military education in 2014. Overall, U.S. military-aid spending in 2014 accounted for 0.16 percent of the U.S. budget. So if you’re contending at the U.S. is broke and needs to cut back, that hardly seems to be the place to start.

Oh, well, I think I’ll go visit my crocodile pool and see how they’re betting on the AL East race. I hope they don’t make me cry.


Facebook Comments