... and Other Mysteries of the Universe Solved
Like most inconvenient truths, the death of Elvis has been shrouded in a mystery that I understand, given my comprehension of the cause of death.
According to what I consider credible information over the years, Elvis died of something called "straining at the stool."
In other words, death by bad shitting habits.
Oh yes, drug abuse and general excess had weakened the circulatory system, but the syndrome is actually a great killer -- a far more vicious threat than killer bees, lightning, spiders, grizzly bears, or (gasp) rattlesnakes.
The physics are simple: you cannot compress a liquid. When one holds one's breath and "bears down at the stool," the liquid finds the weakest point in the circulatory plumbing and tries to relieve the pressure. Usually, it's either a brain hemorrhage or the aorta pops. Boom.
Death is swift. The victim is found, keeled over in front of the toilet, their pants around their ankles.
[Google informs me that the incidence of stool straining is contained in a fabulously entertaining article entitled:
Bowel Frequency and Defecatory Patterns in Children: A Prospective Nationwide Survey. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Volume 3, Issue 11, Pages 1101-1106. E. Corazziari, A. Staiano, E. Miele, L. Greco
But I must confess that I haven't read all the way through the title yet.]
Now, in a practical sense, it doesn't matter a whit whether or not this is true. (Note the nuance, but pass on by). What's important is that when you take a shit, remember to breathe.http://www.wholistic.net/nutrition/whitaker/colon_health.htm
Elvis Presley - A Memphis, Tennessee newspaper reported on August 28, 1977 that Elvis Presley had been hospitalized for 32 days with an impacted colon. One year later he was dead. Reporting on his death the Knight News Wire stated, "Presley was found dead at 2:30 P.M. August 16, green pajama bottoms around his ankles, face down on the red shag rug in front of the toilet. He had been dead for several hours. Medical investigators believe his last act had been, in their terms, 'straining at the stool' the rarely mentioned cause of 1 in 20 deaths."
"Arachnophiobia," my ass. The politely euphemized "commode" is a far deadlier menace than any venomous spiders. (Wes Craven and David Cronenberg take note.)
That's the first thing I learned from the death of Elvis. The second thing I learned was: if it's "inconvenient" to talk about, the social grace these days is NOT to talk about it.
Nobody's probably ever told you about Elvis' death by defecatory misadventure before, have they? Or, if they have, it's only been once or twice. But most of us (relatively) hairless killer apes defecate about once a day. So, it would be a good and a smart thing to know about straining at the stool, wouldn't it? And, rather than admit that "The King" died on "The Throne," the information that could actually save [?? Funny, I can't find a number] lives annually has been generally suppressed. The conversation never took place*.
[* see end
But that wasn't what I wanted to talk about. What I wanted to talk about was the presidential primaries of 2000, and why it will be DEADLY if we don't admit to the actual cause of George W. Bush, and his subsequent, disastrous 'presidency.' Well, disastrous to most, that is. The people who PUT George in the White House have done very well out of all of this. And the cookie jar is still unsecured.
T'was the frontloading of the primaries in 2000 that allowed George W. Bush to slip away with the presidential nomination. Before, there had been a long primary season to select a nominee. In 1960, John F. Kennedy went into the Democratic National Convention without the guaranteed number of delegates for nomination on the first ballot. In 1972, George McGovern only secured enough ballots for the nomination in the period between the last primary in June, and the convention in August. There are other examples.
Iowa started it. They wanted to be FIRST -- ahead of New Hampshire. And, the race was on. You might remember that Albert Gore, Sr. was instrumental in setting up "Super Tuesday" to help his son, who ran unsuccessfully for president in 1988
The phrase "Super Tuesday" first came into use for the slate of primary elections that took place on March 8, 1988, in the Southern states of Texas, Florida, Tennessee, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Kentucky, Alabama, and Georgia leading up to the 1988 election in November. Southern Democrats came up with the idea of a regional primary in an effort to nominate a moderate candidate who would more closely represent their interests. (Their plan ultimately did not succeed as Jesse Jackson and Al Gore split the Southern primaries, and Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis was subsequently nominated.) Since then, the particular states holding primaries on Super Tuesday has varied from year to year. Subsequent "Super Tuesdays" have taken place on March 10, 1992; March 12, 1996; March 7, 2000; and March 2, 2004. In 2000, 16 states and American Samoa held primaries on Super Tuesday, the largest presidential primary election day in U.S. history.
Yep. A consortium of Southern Democrats (before the term became meaningless, like "Liberal Republicans") set up Super Tuesday. And it isn't an accident that the presidential nominations were decided in 2000 and 2004 by the middle of March.
John McCain was catching up to Bush in 2000, and almost certainly would have kicked Bush's ass under the older, long form primary system -- concluding with that plum of the states, California, in late May or early June. That was the primary that Bobby Kennedy won in 1968, assuring his nomination for the duration of one victory speech in the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles (now demolished, alas).
It is a simple equation, as simple as the danger of increased hydrostatic pressure when straining at the stool: the front-loading of the primaries by greedy, short-sighted politicians has played into the hands of the super-rich who increasingly run things hereabouts.
Whoever has the most early money wins, ergo, name recognition and huge war-chests have become a necessary and vital part of the process. The following recent presidents could not have been elected under the current system: Kennedy, Carter, Clinton, and, I believe, George Bush, Sr. who had to fight off primary challenges by Pat Robertson, et al.
No: I told witnesses in 2004 that the primaries would be over by March, and we'd debate the wisdom of front-loading a clearly broken primary system. No such luck.
Instead, they crucified congressman Gary Condit for having "murdered" Chandra Levy, who was later found dead in a park. Condit was innocent, and we were screwed.
Now, Nevada has shoe-horned ITS caucuses between Iowa and New Hampshire (the last still the FIRST actual votin' primary). Oregon legislators now want to jack our primary as early as possible. California did a couple years ago, and just about anybody who wants to "count" in the selection of a presidential nominee, ergo, president, has to move their primaries earlier and earlier in a process that increasingly favors celebrity and a glut of early cash over the traditional rough and tumble that characterizes a presidential election year.
And, thus, they've started this election nearly as soon as the LAST election's chads were being swept up by county janitors from thick linoleum floors.
Unless we fix what's wrong with the primary timing, the next election will again feature little debate, a wealth of "inactive" time -- traditionally between the last primary and the Convention, proper -- and two nominees selected with great haste and little scrutiny.
Bush the Younger was successfully able to hide felonies, drug use, virtual desertion in time of war, and vehicular homicide by his wife in the frenetic run up to a primary season that was over too quick, and a press corps that was, as is increasingly usual, hard-pressed to rival the vegetative Terri Schiavo for perspicacity and penetrating analysis.
As long as the primaries are front loaded, the oligarchy (or, I would maintain, kleptocracy) has an outrageous advantage. And, we can see by their looting of the tax code and the treasury what the result will continue to be.
Many fools, thinking themselves wise, bray that there's no difference between the parties. Well, perhaps the reason for the success of "corporate" candidates has something to do with a system weighted to give money greater weight than debate.
We spent nearly half a billion dollars on the last presidential election. And look at what we got for our money. Shouldn't we re-balance with a bias towards ISSUES and EXAMINATION of the candidates?
So: WHY THE HELL IS NO ONE TALKING ABOUT THIS???
When raising one's voice NOW -- when most state legislatures are in session -- is the ONLY window of opportunity for rescuing the 2008 presidential election from being another travesty of presidential selection?
(When the WMD's are out of reach, you must then vote to impeach. When the Veep's the man behind the curtain, he gets $100K from Halliburton. If you've outed Valerie's CIA cribby, then you must be Dick's stooge Scooter Libby. OK. I'll stop.)
But it's another "inconvenient truth," alas.
And, as for excoriating the comatose press, I'll pass.
Remember to breathe while shitting. Fix the primaries while the current "King" is sitting.
From the FDA:
Chronic idiopathic constipation is generally defined as infrequent and difficult passage of stool. It's one of the most common disorders suffered by Americans.from a Missouri Workman's Comp Decision:
Both doctors agreed that an aneurysm is a "blister" on a blood vessel that can become weak and eventually burst, allowing blood to seep out into the brain (Exhibit X, p. 5); Dr. Pucci characterized this as an outpouching or ballooning of the vessel wall. Both doctors agreed that patients who have aneurysms in their vessels of the brain can walk around their entire lives without the aneurysm rupturing and die of natural causes unrelated to the aneurysm or its rupturing (Exhibit X, p. 54 and live testimony). Both doctors agreed that common causes of aneurysms rupturing are straining at the stool and sexual activity ...Yes. Holding your breath during orgasm induces the same hydraulic danger as straining at the stool: fucking or shitting, please remember to BREATHE. -- HW