For Every Good Curmudgeon There’s a Bad One

I’m working on a humor piece, but at least for this morning I wanted to address a couple of other issues.

Andy Rooney died today.  It seems like we have too few people who call things as they see them anymore.  Now we have one less.  Andy started out as a war correspondent, a tough beat in anyone’s book.  His 60 Minutes commentaries were on subjects with which we little people could relate but he did so with style and class.  Besides, when he was complaining about some issue or another, I swear there was just the tiniest twinkle in his eye. 

Godspeed, Andy, to a place where you can relax because there will be nothing that calls for complaint.


Today is Guy Fawkes Day, marking the execution of the most notable member of a gang that was planning to bomb the British Parliament.  The conspirators collected gunpowder in order to blow up Parliament.  Interrogation techniques were more liberal back then, so under torture they admitted to digging a tunnel between a house and the building where Parliament met.  No tunnel has ever been found, however, even to this day.  The large quantity of gunpowder they accumulated did tend to look more than a bit bad, and the terrorists were convicted then drawn and quartered (a particularly nasty way to die meted out to traitors.)  Fawkes was the final consprator to be executed and at the last minute he fell or jumped from the scaffolding breaking his neck thereby escaping the worst of the punishment.  Guy Fawkes Day became a holiday in England marked by fireworks and bonfires to celebrate the conspirators demise.


Today, many of the “Occupy” protestors have adopted Guy Fawkes masks as a symbol of their resistance.  The mask they have chosen was designed for a movie (“V for Vendetta”) and the design is copyrighted by Time Warner (definitely not part of the 99%) who receives a small licensing fee payment for each mask purchased.  There’s more than a bit of irony in that.

Hugo Weaving as V (

I have a modest proposal.

Are you surprised?

Rather than Guy Fawkes, who we’d pretty much describe as a terrorist today, there are other choices for a mascot.  Why not John Adams who was one of the sparks that ignited the quest for independency?   There’s always Thomas Jefferson, who placed the concept of breaking from England before the world with the Declaration of Independence.  Why not James Madison, who the Constitution?  He was the one who penned the Bill of Rights guaranteeing freedom of speech and assembly?  If you feel it just isn’t right without a lot of gunpowder, there’s always General George Washington.

The big difference between them and Fawkes is that Adams, Jefferson, Washington, Adams and the other Founding Fathers succeeded.  Guy Fawkes failed.

I say – it’s best to go with a winner.

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