Posts Tagged ‘Indiana’

Now that retired General Colin Powell endorsed President Barak Obama the pressure on me has increased to issue my formal endorsement so here it is: I, Arliss Bunny, am endorsing President Barack Obama for a second term and I ask all those of you who were participating in the #ArlissForPresident meme to join me in supporting the President. In studying both the President’s past success in saving the economy and in evaluating his plan for the future, I believe his is the only logic-based, real world approach available to voters at this time. I am also a big supporter of ObamaCare as I feel that health care for my staff is essential to seeing to it that my needs can be amply met on a daily basis. Though there are many other reasons, several of which have been detailed in my previous blog posts, I have to admit that one of the biggest reasons I am supporting the President is because, unlike Governor Romney, he never said this:

I’m not a big-game hunter. I’ve always been a rodent and rabbit hunter. Small varmints, if you will. I began when I was 15 or so and I have hunted those kinds of varmints since then.•


There simply are not enough thumps in the world to describe how insulted I, and I feel I can safely say, every Rabbit American remain about this remark. There was never a hint of an apology. Of course, all this comes from a man who tied his dog to the roof (in a carrier, but still…) for a long family trip so one must consider the source.

On the other paw, the spokesman for the Obama campaign, Ben LaBolt, clarified the President’s position and contributed to this episode by adding,

The president’s record makes clear the he supports and respects the Second Amendment. Mitt Romney is going to have difficulty explaining why he quadrupled fees on gun owners in Massachusetts, then lied about being a lifelong hunter in an act of shameless pandering. That varmint won’t hunt.

Okay, no one really thought that I would be endorsing the Governor. Rabbits really are liberals. We are vegans and when was the last time you met a vegan conservative? Ohhhh, that’s right,  he was that guy sitting next to the lesbian, black, Republican at the last $50,000 per plate fundraiser you attended. It’s simple folks. The Republican Party gets the gun crazies and the Democrats get the vegans. That’s how it is here in the real world.

The problem is, liberals have been pissed, really pissed, for a while now and as a liberal Rabbit American I think there was some question about my being motivated enough to vote in a way that makes my vote count – and by that I mean not for the Green Party. I want you to know that I am voting for the President not just because he is the lesser of two evils, which he most certainly is despite the great rhetoric to the contrary, I’m voting for him because in almost all areas which matter to me he has moved the country in a positive direction. Yes, that doesn’t mean I’m not pissed about the southern leg of the KeystoneXL pipeline or the re-letting of leases on federal lands and it really doesn’t mean I think he has gone far enough on LGBTQ issues but I do know that he stopped the northern leg of Keystone at the border, funding for green tech is way up, DADT is a thing of the past and DOMA is on its way out. Banking regulation is making a comeback and consumer protection already has. Holding fast to end the War on Women, the War on Workers and the War on Voting has occupied departments of his administration on an almost daily basis. For all that, he deserves your vote and another four years. I am proud that, as liberals, we feel unconstrained by our Party and free to call the President out on his litterbox habits but when the election is this close remember that Ross Perot and Ralph Nader have already cost our country enough and we must consider that a lesson learned. Governor Romney is a var-Mitt (and you can quote me on that.)

Congressman Joe Donnelly IS a varmint but I’m endorsing him too. It’s killing me to say this. Voting Donnelly is definitely a “hold your nose and vote” situation for Indiana liberals. While Donnelly does support abortion exceptions, he still believes that he, and a whole lot of other men in Washington, DC, whom you have never met either, should get to control the bodies of women. He also thinks that the parts of the Bible condoning slavery don’t count but the parts he thinks allow for legalized bigotry against the LGBT community are just fine.

Blue Dog

He is a member of the Blue Dog Coalition but ObamaCare and the massive fiscal savings it affords are a touchy subject because freedom. He does, however, support Obamacare/ADA as long as you don’t really call it that. Fortunately, Donnelly does accept that climate change is real and, additionally, he is pushing for a massive overhaul of the Mineral Management Service (which dropped the ball so badly in oversight of off-shore drilling rigs in the gulf). Unfortunately, along with that Joe supports drilling off the continental shelf. He is a significant supporter for renewable technologies, however, and understands that we can’t drill our way to the future. Sadly, he opposes all forms of immigration amnesty and I assume this includes the Dream Act though that is not specified on his website. Unions support Joe because he supports them and Joe is backing the President’s plan to bring the troops in Afghanistan home by 2014.

Here’s the thing – anyone who thinks oppressing others is fine is not fine with me. Rabbits have had enough of that and it continues to be a daily struggle for so many of my kind. (Unlike some religious communities of color, I don’t forget that we are not any of us free until all of us are free.) Still, the world is an imperfect place and Richard Mourdock is at the “Gift from God” Rape level of evil. Joe is the best that is available to us now and the race is VERY close. Additionally, picking up the Indiana seat in the Senate would be a huge win for the Democratic Party and, in most cases, work in our best interests.

Which brings me to my final point, liberals are stupid. The Tea Party mapped out a way to take over the country and we sat by and snickered. What were we thinking!?! The way they mobilized was smart. The way they spelled their signs was not. Still, the jokes on us. We know how to mobilize. We’ve done it before. In spite of the 2010 wave, Indiana remains a purple state under its film of GOP induced fear and bigotry. In all less-than-blue states we would not win immediately but running a few genuinely strong candidates in key districts around the state begins a process of education. Sitting quietly by and letting the Blue Dogs run the show gets us where we are now.

Take it from me, rabbits know a lot about fear. We are prey animals, after all. Our motto is, “Everyone eats rabbits. Rabbits don’t eat anyone.” So you know how we have survived? You know what has made us strong? We breed. We make sure there are always a lot more of us than there are of them. Sadly, liberals aren’t really big breeders but we can be big educators and information can be powerful. We can learn to shape and craft a message that appeals on an emotional level instead of just an intellectual one. We can learn that the next election started yesterday. We can learn that even running and losing is important if it serves the greater goal. And we can fight.

My name is Arliss Bunny. I am a liberal Rabbit American and I approved this message.

•Governor Romney said this on April 7 2007. Don’t think the other Republican Presidential candidates didn’t merrily roast him for it, just, apparently, not enough.

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It would be polite of me to say that my year spent in Just to the Right of Nowhere was lovely and that I appreciate everything done for me by my temporary staff but why start lying now? I have returned to my home in the capital city, Indianapolis, and I am damn glad to be here. When my Chief of Staff arrived in JttRoN she did bring gifts. It wasn’t enough to make up for her having gone, without me, to Ireland for a YEAR but I loved the dandelion. I noticed, however, that there was reticence to give me more than two blueberries-on-the-half-shell at a time. Apparently, my previous blog on the subject had an impact.

Clover did move with me. I was a widow when I was sent into exile and he became a widower while I was stuck in JttRoN so we naturally gravitated together. As one would expect, he worships me. Having him here has helped to make some of the changes easier.

On the first day, we decorated.

His grooming gets better all the time. I don't like to reciprocate.

Speaking of changes, do you know what they have in Ireland? They have greyhounds. Do you know how I know this? Because they now have one fewer. How do I know this seemingly obscure fact? Because that one lives here now!!! It’s name is Emmy. It’s big. And irritating. It keeps sniffing me…with an accent. Thump!

Are you SERIOUS?

Of course when I told the beasts to scram, they did.

I am trying to be accepting but I have to tell you, gentle reader, it’s hard.  Still, in my eleven years as a wise and disapproving rabbit I have never found bigotry to be right or just or moral or even economically viable.  I have only ever found it to be mean.

Here’s the thing – I disapprove of Emmy when she sniffs my tail but I disapprove of anyone who sniffs my tail. Period. No exceptions. (This means YOU.) In Indiana the State Legislature just spent most of the legislative session bickering about the subject of gay marriage. They came down against it because it is the firm belief of the Republican Party that staying in power is more important than doing what is right.

The Republican Party has mastered the art of championing fear* and riding that fear to victory. The key, of course, is never to focus on anything that is a genuine threat. As long as Republicans can keep their core whipped up about things that don’t matter (or can’t be solved by legislation) than they can lie at will because emotions are rarely centered on facts. This means that they expend their energy around issues like gay marriage, abortion, illegal immigration and guns instead of the kinds of core issues that build or maintain a successful nation including:  education, infrastructure, sustainable economic growth, long-term environmental issues, health care (including cost management, liability limitations, drug costs and pharmaceutical development costs, well care/preventative care etc), resource management and the military (including support of underlying technologies and industries).

Humans – there are BIG issues and BIG problems. Gay marriage is not one of them but bigotry is. Bigotry towers for the simple reason that either we believe that we are ALL valuable and all of us are needed to solve the real problems or we believe that the world really is about us and them. For you bigots who haven’t yet figured it out, unless your last name is Koch or Murdoch, you aren’t one of those “us.” Those “us” will eventually turn on you too because they only care about one thing and, trust me, it isn’t you.

So, the Republicans in Indiana have cast their votes in favor of  bigotry. It’s embarrassing. It’s wrong. It’s mean. Even disapproving rabbits know it. Step up, humans. Don’t just sit in your hutches and thump. DO SOMETHING. Next time the news is covering the “voice of the people” make sure it is your voice. Stop letting yourself be represented or intimidated or out maneuvered by homophobes and fear-driven fools. If you don’t know what to do or how to be of help, go here, the Human Rights Campaign is a great place to start.

Don’t just complain on Facebook. Don’t just make wry observations on Twitter. Don’t just be thoughtful, Work for change. Stupid is never the answer but sometimes polite isn’t either. Make noise. Thump!

[*Whereas the Democratic Party has utterly failed in this regard. We can’t even manage to effectively message real threats. It’s humiliating.]

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It is incumbent upon me, as a prime representative of my species, to continue to drive us forward, to seek new horizons, to conquer new lands and then to rule over them with an iron paw. This I have done. Here, in Just to the Right of Nowhere, I have expanded the borders of my lands to include the ENTIRE first floor of the house (well, except for that one un-renovated room which doesn’t have air conditioning and is uncomfortably warm this time of year.) I have navigated the furthest reaches of the parlor, front room, laundry porch, master bath, kitchen and the dining room. I own them. Those that live there do so by my leave. I am considering raising taxes.

The most difficult challenge was facing down the large, vicious predator who roams these lands. They call her “Eleanor” and you can tell just by looking at her that she is a killer. You laugh, but her tail can really knock you upside the head. I, of course, am clever enough to duck and keep my ears down. Also, she licked me a once, just a little, and that took HOURS to groom off. Ewwwwwwwwwww!


Eleanor the Goldendoodle

My favorite thing to do during my perambulations around my estates is to hide behind the couches or under chairs. This drives the staff crazy and has resulted in several lengthy searches all of which I consider terribly entertaining and the cherry on top of my day.

Arliss Dines

Dinner is served.

Speaking of cherries, I have found that I approve of both cherries and raspberries though I should say that in the singular because if I have more than one it leads to an unfortunate situation involving my tail which I prefer to avoid. Just last night I was offered some beet leaf and I am taking it under advisement. My usual dinner salad includes cilantro, parsley, kale, endive, Brussels sprout, escarole, green leaf lettuce and Boston lettuce with a mini-carrot appetizer and Bunny Basics-T for dessert. All three courses are paired with a lovely soft water which I very much enjoy. I’m looking forward to the dandelion and other treats that come along with summer salads. The staff here prepares all my salads especially for me by chopping everything up into small pieces so that I can pick them up with my lips and chew them with my back teeth. Not having any front teeth is something of which I very much disapprove as I would be using them not only to eat but to express my disapproval at critical times.

Arliss explores.

Arliss conquers new lands.


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You may have noticed that I have been fairly quiet these past few days. This is because I recently found out that the place where I am staying, Rising Sun, Indiana (also known as Just to the Right of Nowhere, if you have been following my blog), is directly across the Ohio River from RABBIThash, Kentucky! As in, if you hop up on the window ledge, as I did when I invaded Madalyn and Samwise’s room the other day, you can look right across to it. Very traumatic. What was Amy thinking! Obviously, I have paid for the overnight FedEx of that Winchester I had previously been discussing. Since I firmly believe that preparation is the key to success, I am educating myself on what it means to be so close to Kentucky. [I was going to say, “A well prepared rabbit is a successful rabbit,” but adjusted in light of the overall subject matter.]

First of all, Rabbithash is small – so I think I could take ‘um.

Secondly, the mayor is a dog. Actually, it’s their second dog mayor in a row which tells you two things about the human residents. We all know that rabbits are smarter than dogs, so if the dogs are literally running the executive branch of this town, that doesn’t speak very well of the humans. Additionally, these humans have a strange, possibly psychotic obsession with us animals. I think it is cause for grave concern.

In looking more deeply into the entire matter of Kentucky I find that, while it may have its strong points (anyone out there ever tasted this “blue grass” and, if so, please report back) it also is home to the Creation Museum. In fact, one has to pass this ludicrous place when traveling from here to Rabbithash. A trip which I, of course, will never be making. The Creation Museum was founded by humans who are trying to “prove” that the earth is only 6000 years old. I do not find this either insane or dim, I find it to be purposefully ignorant, a state for which there is no excuse. If humans ever stop to wonder why they seem to be moving backwards while we bunnies continue to evolve, it would be because we aren’t wasting our time trying to prove a fairy tale. Bunnies deal in reality. It’s something one learns quickly as a young bun. Basically, at the very same time our mother is teaching us about the “food chain” – as in “everyone eats bunnies, bunnies don’t eat anyone.” Now, I’ll grant you, how each one of us chooses to live is our own individual choice. Some perfectly nice buns I have known have elected to live their lives from a place of fear. Some poor bunnies have had the necessity of fear forced upon them due to conditions generated by cruel humans. Still others have emerged from such circumstances with a clear understanding that fear may be what keep them alive during an immediate crisis but it is no way to live an entire life.

I, obviously, subscribe to the “No Fear” school but Samwise is a perfect example of a bun who has survived Kentucky-based adversity. Sam was in a small hutch, in Kentucky, with four other bunnies all of whom were very nearly abused and starved to death. One of Sam’s friends, in fact, did not survive. It took the good humans nearly a year to nurse Sam back to health. He is now a lovely, glossy boy who spends his days relaxing and snuggling with Madalyn. Sam is easy-going and was very pleasant to me when we met but he is quite afraid of most people. I find this to be a reasonable compromise. Such a sweet rabbit, nearly murdered in Kentucky, has earned the right to be cautious.

I asked Sam what he thought about being just a hop, skip and a jump from Rabbithash. He assures me that he’s keeping an ear cocked and always sleeps with one eye open. I loaned him my Winchester catalog.

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Never let it be said that I am not a traditionalist. Oh, I’m all for the indoor plumbing/litter boxes and, of course, I simply insist upon central heat and air, but at my core, I’m a traditional bunny. Which is why I have decided to plan my escape using a classic technique. I’m going to tunnel my way out of this Victorian hell. I worked at it for several hours, on and off, today. Damn the idiot who put hardwood floors in this place. What were they thinking?!? THUMP! I’ll keep you posted on my progress. Once I’m out of here it’s just a quick call to the Bunderground Railroad and I’m back in Indianapolis! I’ve heard good things about the new airport and as long as I’m not in one of those humiliating pet carriers, who is going to notice one bunny on an entire airplane? Ireland here I come!

Arliss and dinner.

Arliss comments on the lateness of her dinner service.

Yesterday. I promised you more detail on the meals here and in addition to being a traditionalist, I am a bun of my word so here’s the scoop. Basically, the menu is excellent but the service is crap. Everything is prepared and served nicely and I have yet to suffer from the embarrassment of poopy tail but my dinner arrived very late last night. Hurrumph! Clover, who eats almost all the time and, thus, invariably talks with his mouth full, tells me that this is normal. I was quite expressive on the subject last night so we will see if my efforts have made a difference. Seriously, what else could this staff possibly be doing for all those hours they aren’t feeding me?

Oh, and about Mia and Clover – he seems very nice. He spends lots of time all stretched out along the fence with his relaxed happy feet and showing off his perfect, white rex coat. I would say that he has a bit of a big head except that it is just the opposite. According to Mia, he put on weight this past year so his head actually looks a tad small. I plan to tease him about this mercilessly. The staff calls him Clover the Annoying, though I have yet to see even one small reason why. He seems perfectly within his rights to keep them on their toes. I approve entirely. Mia, which, as I understand it, is short for Mi’Amore, isn’t especially good company. I could tell, right away when I arrived, that there was a third bunny living here up until just recently. I am told that her name was Moesha and she was Mia’s best friend for ten years. Mia is having a hard time without her. I told her I knew how she was feeling because I too have lost my best friend. I explained that she should suck it up and get on with the making me feel welcome. You see… I am trying.

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Days 1 & 2

Well isn’t this just grand. Here I am, a perfectly spectacular bunny just beginning my active elderbun years and I find myself in this fix. My human staff, who I have been training for the better part of ten years has had the nerve to take a posting in Ireland for a year and has left me with substitute staff. Let me be the first to say, everything about this is wrong.

First of all, I can accept that the trip to Ireland would be trying and something called quarantine would be really horrible (and much too long) but has anyone ever seen a photo of Ireland that didn’t feature loads of green grass?!? Clearly, this is a place I would appreciate but instead I have been relegated to spending a year in a not entirely rehabed Victorian in Rising Sun, Indiana. If you are wondering where that is, get a map of the United States, find the Middle of Nowhere and look just to the right. Now, you’ve got it. They are in Ireland and I am in someplace you can’t even see on your map. You would be pissed too.

In response to this thoughtless slight, I have decided to post a blog documenting my thrilling year just to the right of Nowhere. Perhaps a few initial facts are in order. I am a ten-year old lop rabbit and because my staff are properly educated members of the House Rabbit Society (www.rabbit.org) I live inside where I am safe, properly fed, utilize a litter box and have maximum access to my staff. I am spayed (no cancer for me!) and, in my particular case, have had several other surgeries to deal with some unfortunate abscesses that ultimately caused my surgeon to have to remove my four front teeth. While this would be a debilitating problem for many bunnies, for me it simply means that my personal chef provides my daily salads, mini carrot and hay all cut up into small pieces so that I can easily manage my meals. I’ll have more to say on the subject of meals in this and later blogs since mealtime is one of the highlights of this or any day. Finally, I should state, without prevarication, that I am not one of those meek, sweet, quite bunnies. No sirree! I’m a loud and proud bitch of a bunny who has earned my reputation boxing ankles and communicating my frequent displeasure with a forceful thump accompanied by a meaningful glare. I’m what the bunny appreciative humans refer to as a feisty bun. So there.

To conclude this first blog, I’ll take a quick run at just a few of the many other things that are wrong. Everything, for instance, smells wrong. The dog is entirely wrong. The one they have here is large, has curly fur and is pumpkin colored all over. Clearly, wrong. I’ve already mentioned the new staff and I have to say that my old ones were so much better. They already knew just what I wanted and when to have it ready for me. This new staff does everything at the wrong times. THUMP! The lack of proper housing is truly unacceptable. I have been allotted a small (borrowed) hut which is really quite marginal. Apparently I am awaiting the arrival of something called a Maze Haven (from BusyBunny.com) but that remains to be seen and surely should have been ordered prior to my arrival. THUMP!

The only bits of good news are that the other two bunnies in the room, Mia and Clover, seem polite enough (more on them another day) and the food has been pretty good. I especially enjoyed the Brussels sprout and the kale. In closing, I will say that I am trying to be patient which, I think, is more than anyone could or should expect from me.

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