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Profile Information

Name: William Rivers Pitt
Gender: Male
Hometown: Boston
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 58,167

Journal Archives

This is freedom.

More mass shootings this year so far than days passed on the calendar.

Will we get the war weapons off the streets? Will the leaders lead?

No, we won't. No, they won't.

We will stack the bodies like cordwood using children as the mortar to build our real wall, the one between our humanity and ourselves. The TV will be sad for a few days and then Justin Bieber will drive too fast somewhere, and we'll roll those bones under the rug with all the others.

When 20 dead children at Sandy Hook changed nothing and almost 90,000 have died by gun violence since, we crossed a moral Rubicon. There is no coming back. This is what we are.

We are the Monster State. We stack the bodies and stroke the bullets until they are greasy with sweat. We are heroes, proud in the thunder of our guns, because this is freedom.

This is freedom.

This is freedom.

Not with a whimper, but a bang.

This is freedom.

I dreamed of my father last night (regarding Muhammad Ali)

I dreamed of my father last night. He died in February, but in the dream he was coming to visit. It was one of those frustration dreams where you can't get anything done, and also one of those dreams that keeps coming back after it wakes you up and you go back to sleep. I finally gave up and went out to watch some TV. That's when I learned Muhammad Ali was gone.

My father and I met Ali in the lobby of the Parker House Hotel in Boston. I was seven years old, and my Dad was a rabid Ali fan. Ali was, of course, standing in a crowd, so my father hoisted me onto his shoulders and bulled through the mob ... and there I was, face to face with The Greatest. He glowered at me, went "Boo!" and then smiled that megawatt smile. I said "Hi Champ!" and shook his massive hand.

My father and I made many memories together, but I think he'd agree that meeting Muhammad Ali was our mutual all-time favorite. Now, I'm no moonbeamer, but as I sat and watched the coverage in the darkness of the early morning, I remembered the dream I'd had and realized something: My father did visit me last night to bring me the news. I could even hear his voice: "Son ... wake up, son ... The Champ went down."

Losing Muhammad Ali was a little like losing my father all over again, but I have that Parker House memory along with a new one: An unexpected visit in the night. I can live with that.

Rest easy, Champ.

DU was informed that JeffR passed away one year ago today

I wrote this on Facebook that dark day.


It's funny. Due to the nature of my work - writer and editor for an online alternative newspaper since 2002 - I live online. Some of the relationships I've built are going on 20 years old, because I was in the game before the Clinton impeachment...and that can be hard, because your friends are just a screen name, and so many others will say shit to a keyboard they'd never DARE say to your face, and it can be aggravating.

...and then a guy like JeffR - who I have known and admired for years - dies out of nowhere, and I find myself with tears in my eyes for a man I never once met. I only knew him as a screen name, but the news of his loss hit me like a blow. That was the measure of the man; he made that large an impact on someone he never laid eyes on, because of the excellent force of his presence.

Technology is strange and terrible and beautiful...and I'll tell you something, and take close note: The keyboard is the content of your character in this weird space. People like JeffR are sadly rarer than hen's teeth. You know, or not. It depends on where you look, and how you act yourself. In the immortal words of Jim Morrison, "This is the strangest life I've ever known."

Fair winds and following seas, Jeff. I never met you, but by God, you will be missed.

In memoriam of a great man

William Rivers Pitt | Michael Ratner Is Gone; You're Still Here

Call it, Skinner

Close this cesspool of a sub-forum down.

Win, lose or draw, Bernie or Hillary, this shithole doesn't deserve to exist any more. I am ashamed to have ever been associated with this place. Close it down, nail the doors shut and salt the earth so nothing ever grows here again.

Let the million flowers bloom. Elsewhere.

How the Eagles predicted Donald Trump

Mirrors on the ceiling,
The pink champagne on ice
And she said "We are all just prisoners here,
of our own device"
And in the master's chambers,
They gathered for the feast
They stab it with their steely knives,
But they just can't kill the beast ...

-- Hotel California


The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire
We don't need no water, let that motherfucker


An old joke for Antonin

There's an old joke about a man who would buy a newspaper every day from a paperboy, scan the front page, and then throw the paper away in disgust. After a while, the paperboy asked him why he kept throwing the paper away. "I'm looking for someone in the obituaries," the man replied. "But, sir," said the paperboy, "the obituaries are on page 30." The man looked at him and said, "When the son of a bitch I'm looking for dies, he'll be on the front page."

... and there he is.

Thank you.

Tragedy, like satire, takes no prisoners. It finds its intended target and lays waste. Like those asteroid apocalypse movies, the wave rolls in and scourges the land before receding.

Tragedy, however, is also the proving ground for the core essence of where people live within themselves, and how they treat others. There's the old story about the frog trying to explain to a tadpole what it's like on dry land. Tragedy motivates the good frog to jump back into the water and explain it nose to nose.

I lack the adequate vocabulary to express my gratitude to all of you for your kind words, your good wishes, your shared sorrows, and the strength you have given me over these last several days. You have helped to keep me on my feet in the aftermath of my father's passing, more than I could ever explain.

They say the internet separates people. Not here. Thank you. Thank you. A thousand times thank you.

Some damn good frogs by this pond.

A great Democrat has left us.

He was awarded the Bronze Star during his service in Vietnam on a mission that saved scores of civilian lives. He dedicated the rest of his life to government service in both DC and the State of Alabama, worked with Don Siegleman and defended him at trial, served for several years as Chairman of the Alabama Democratic Party, and served as Vice Chairman before he passed. He was a US Attorney under Clinton for almost eight years. In one form or another, he was involved in every Democratic presidential campaign since Bobby Kennedy's. His favorite politician was FDR, but he worshiped the ground upon which Jack and Bobby Kennedy walked. His knowledge of politics and history was encyclopedic, and he imparted as much of that to me as my feeble mental RAM could encompass.

His name was Charles Redding Pitt. He would have been 72 next month, and he was my father. He died on Sunday from a sudden illness. I loved him very much.

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