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Ho ho ho! It’s that time of year again. Here’s JHK’s holiday classic: A Christmas Orphan.

11-year-old Jeff Greenaway hears his mom and dad argue one night after an office Christmas party. He infers from their garbled squabble that he is an orphan, found in a willow basket on the welcome mat outside their New York apartment. Thinking now that his parents are imposters, he steals away to Grand Central Station and buys a train ticket to Drakesville, Vermont, where he intends to start life all over again.
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JHK’s lost classic now reprinted as an e-book
Kindle edition only


 

Archive | Clusterfuck Nation – Blog RSS feed for this section

Skidding Toward Fall

     This economy has a destination for sure, but it’s not in the direction where all eyes are trained in moist hopefulness: that glimmering horizon of longed-for growth. You will not get that kind of growth — the kind that increases the overall wealth of the organism in question. A few people will make more »

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What Is It?

     The New York Times ran a story of curious import this morning: “Mel Gibson Loses Support Abroad.” Well, gosh, that’s disappointing.  And just when we needed him, too. Concern over this pressing matter probably reflects the general mood of the nation these dog days of summer – and these soggy days, indeed, are more »

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What If He’s Right?

       Just when America was celebrating the provisional end of BP’s Macondo oil blowout, and getting back to important issues like Kim Kardashian’s body-suit collection, along comes Matthew Simmons with a rather strange and alarming outcry on doings in the Gulf of Mexico that contradicts the mood of renewed festivity, as well as more »

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Where Have We been? Where Are We Going?

       On a hot Saturday in mid-July in my corner of the country, when everyone else is cavorting on Million Dollar Beach at Lake George, or plying the aisles of the home Depot, or riding their motorcycles in faux-outlaw hordes, I like to slip away to the neglected places where nobody goes.  I more »

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My Tea Party

     Now that congress has passed a fake financial reform bill that will accomplish absolutely nothing to correct a recently engrained culture of swindling, I want to start my own tea party. I don’t want to associate it with the other tea parties that have already formed because I am allergic to much of more »

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Say What?

           I think America missed something. It must be the time of year, what with inhaling all those fumes from the charcoal starter… and fueling up the Jet-skis so as to turn a perfectly good mountain lake into something like a Cuisinart on the guacamole setting… and the rousing evenings in the more »

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Mismanaging Contraction

     Lesson of the Macondo:  Blowout preventers don’t prevent blowouts. This comes as a shock to people attuned to the on-schedule arrival of techno-miracles. Now, all the acronym-studded invocations of techno-mastery by men wearing interesting hats will not avail to put the schnitz on an epic horror show in the Gulf of Mexico.     more »

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Fierce Urgency

     The exquisite morbidity of the BP oil spill has concentrated the collective national mind like few other events in this ongoing long emergency. How many times a day does it occur to you — perhaps while sitting in traffic, or oogling some girl in a nearby cubicle, or cruising the freezer stacks in more »

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Which Horizon?

     Did the nation heave a sigh of relief when BP announced that their latest gambit to “cap” the Deepwater Horizon gusher will result in hosing up fifty percent of the leaking oil? If so, the nation may be sighing too soon since the other half of the oil will still collect in underwater more »

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Welcome Home To Slum Nation

     It’s sad to be a citizen of a nation that can’t do anything right. While BP was fumbling its “kill shot” into the Deepwater Horizon hole, and the dying pelicans were flopping in the poisoned marshlands, and rumors seeped across the Internet that nothing short of an atom bomb would avail to stop more »

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Out of Darkness

     If the Devil created an anti-city, a place where people would feel least human, Atlanta would surely be that place — despite the prayerful babble of tongues emanating from the evangelical roller rinks at every freeway off-ramp. One might think: Los Angeles, but that city at least came up with the amenity of more »

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Something Happened

     Everybody in the world is broke, except for maybe Lloyd Blankfein, and he may not end up broke so much as broken — by a political meat-grinder that is revving up to turn the world’s woes and swindles into a new kind of Long Emergency sausage, to be distributed among the roiling, angry more »

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And Chicks for Free?

     The European Union came up with a trillion dollar bail-out for itself at the dawn’s early light. Plus, each member gets a Latvian prostitute, gratis. The Germans will love this. It already goosed the Euro back above $1.30 — just when they hoped a lower Euro would help them move a few more more »

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Worse Than 1789?

     Senator Levin pretty much had Goldman Sach’s Lloyd Blankfein dead in a casket with that now-notorious email from GS’s head of sales and trading, Tom Montag, describing one of their billion-dollar investment “products” as “one shitty deal.”  Levin seemed to delight in crossing the boundary into the realm of the unspeakable, knowing that more »

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A Still Moment

     George W. Bush was onto something in the fall of 2008 when he remarked apropos of the Lehman collapse: “…this sucker could go down.”      It’s my serene conviction, by the way, that this sucker actually is going down, right now, even as I clatter away at the keys — perhaps in more »

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Where’s Rico?

     It’s interesting and instructive to read The New York Times‘ lead story this morning, Top Goldman Leaders Said to Have Overseen Mortgage Unit. While it pretends to report all the particulars of the huge scandal growing out of Friday’s SEC action against Goldman Sachs, the story really comes off as an attempt to more »

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My Hometown and Its Fate

     I was in my hometown, New York City, over the weekend. Everybody, it seemed, was outside swarming in the streets and the parks in perfect strolling weather. The magnolias and dogwoods were bursting. Anything highlighted in gold leaf was all burnished up. The city’s sparkling physical condition was due of course to the more »

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False Spring

     In a place like upstate New York, north of Albany, where April is more generally known as “mud season,” and the wait for “ice-out” on the big lakes takes forever, and on frigid nights the windigos steal through the tops of the tall pines — it would seem foolish to complain about perfectly beautiful more »

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Our Turn?

     Nations go crazy. It’s terrifying when it happens, especially to a major nation with the ability to project its craziness outward. We look back on the psychotic break of Germany in 1933 and still wonder how the then-best-educated population in Europe could fall under the sway of a sociopathic political program. We behold more »

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The Party of Cruelty

     It was amusing to see the Republican party inveigh against health insurance reform as if they were a synod of Presbyterian necromancers girding the nation for a takeover by the spawn of hell.  This was the same gang, by the way, who championed the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003, more »

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Where Have We Been; Where Are We Going?

     Driving down the broad avenues of Cleveland, Ohio, was like flipping through the pages of a picture book about the rise and fall of our industrial empire. Where demolitions had not removed things — a lot was gone — stood the residue of a society so different from ours that you felt momentarily more »

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Then All At Once

     I was plying the interstate highways of New England this weekend — there is no sane way to get from Albany, New York, to the vicinity of Middletown, Connecticut, by public transit — marveling at the vistas of normality all around me: the freeway lanes with their orderly streams of happy motorists, the more »

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Winter Mind Games

     Does anyone know exactly how the Winter Olympics got hijacked by the Canadian Hotel Housekeeping Employees Union?  Every time I turned the damn thing on, there were these ladies uniformed in manual labor casuals shoving teakettles across the floor while other ladies madly polished the forward path of said sliding kettles with Swiffer© more »

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Rehearsals for a Civil War

     Amid the general incoherence of the Tea Party rebels and the failure of progressives to recognize the structural changes underway in a peak oil world, lies a deadly swamp of paradox where all parties may drown in the quicksand of their own muddled intentions.      The Tea Party appeals to the swelling more »

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Euroland, the Horror Movie

       An Olympian game of musical chairs in global finance heads for a climax in the days ahead as so many eyes are diverted to alternate festivities in British Columbia, where grown men compete for gold by riding things that look like cafeteria trays down icy mountainsides — is this the moment that more »

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