Archive for the 'Brexit sucks the big one.' Category

Nov 11 2016

Just a few questions on the way out the door.

Today is Veterans Day, or as I prefer to think of it now, Remembrance Day as it is referred to throughout the British Commonwealth.  I supposed to honor others for their service and I do. But I have also given some 35+ years of my life to the service of the United States. And on this Veterans Day, that falls just days after a national electoral catastrophe for my country, one must forgive me if I can't but help to think all of that service was for nothing. The people still chose to fling themselves into the Hegelian Hell that awaits them next year as the new Administration begins its drive to erase any and all progress since the year 1992.

So let's get the formalities out of the way. Thank all those how have served and are serving for their service. You may be the only constancy left in the nation, even if the world is supposed to be better than it is and less in need of your service.


So as I head out the door to face the long cold of the coming winter of economic, political and foreign policy discontent, I thought it might be useful to ask the Trumpkins a few questions about the policies their hero seems to be advocating. Maybe they can explain to me EXACTLY how the coming conservative policies are going to make my life and the lives of my children better. Can you tell me? I seen plenty of evidence that they won't. But in fairness, may you could tell me the other side of the story.

For example, can you tell me how a 10% corporate tax rate will actually do anything to make higher paying jobs available to me and my children? We have seen plenty of evidence that when companies get a windfall like that, they simply profit the difference and do nothing invest in their companies or workers. Why is this time somehow different?


Question number 2. Tell me how, when I am already saving 15% of my salary for retirement, paying for my Social Security and Medicare and paying a tax rate of 16-18% I am supposed to find solace in a Health Savings Account. Especially since my last colonoscopy in the United States cost over 10,000 dollars. How exactly does it get my son an insurance policy since he has a preexisting condition?

Along the same lines, can you somehow tell me how, repealing the ACA and replacing it with the race to the bottom known as selling across state lines will make my insurance premiums cheaper? Especially since the basic assumption of the GOP is that ACA is a complete and utter disaster from top to bottom and therefore can’t be changed, altered or reformed, so it must be completely repealed. 

And someone is really going to have to explain to me how privatizing Medicare is not going to take away the current level of coverage in the program? Health care experts have already pointed out how it transfers expenses to individuals, many of whom cannot afford it.

One important note: Despite what Ryan says, the plan doesn’t actually maintain the prohibition on denials of coverage for pre-existing conditions, which may be the single most popular element of the ACA. It does so only if you maintain continuous coverage, beginning with a special one-time open enrollment. If you don’t, you’ll find that insurers can once again deny you because of your medical history, just like in the bad old days. And his answer for people with costly medical conditions is high-risk pools, which are just about the worst way possible to provide insurance (they segregate the costliest patients together, making coverage impossibly expensive).

And that's just about healthcare. We have not even gotten to the rest of the deal.

Like this important question. How does deregulating the banks and not ensuring they maintain required capital minimums prevent a re-run of the 2008 financial crisis? Hmmm? Or eliminating the Consumer Fraud Protection Bureau stop a bank from doing what Wells Fargo did? Can you tell me?

Here is one that hits close to home. How does a federal hiring freeze actual make the government more responsive? It keeps people from coming in the door-but with out restructuring (e.g. reducing organizations) you will just have less people trying to do the same work. How do you do less with less?

A simple question. How does removing environmental restrictions eliminate or prevent this from happening. 

Finally, how does incurring a massive increase in the debt to finance tax cuts for rich people prevent problems in the bond markets?  ( Marketplace did a story on that today).

In summary, I cannot see one thing, that in his proposals that will make my life better. Not one thing. But maybe  I missed something.


5 responses so far

Jun 28 2016

The first draft of history…

Yes the markets went back up today. I did my bit to help and bought stock in Match.Com. ( Because you never know when you'll need to fire up that Tinder App).

But Britain kept taking one hit after another. A labor No Confidence vote that Jeremy Corbyn lost, and additional credit downgrades. These are lighting the fuse for the recession of 2017.

So is there time to point out how utterly stupid Brexit was? There is always time to point out how fucked in the head the Brexit vote was.

Assuming I'm not dead from alcohol poisoning on November 9th, which is a very real possibility if Trump wins, Laurie Penny at The New Statesman has written the first draft of what will be many posts calling the American people stupid. Just take the British names and substitute American ones-and you feel her (and my) pain:

I want my country back

This was never a referendum on the EU. It was a referendum on the modern world.

There’s not enough tea in the entire nation to help us Keep Calm and Carry On today. Not on a day when prejudice, propaganda, naked xenophobia and callous fear-mongering have won out over the common sense we British like to pride ourselves on. Not on a day when we’re being congratulated by Donald Trump, Marine Le Pen, and nobody else. Well done, turkeys. Santa’s on his way.

Nigel Farage, the rich, racist cartoon demagogue, boasts that this victory was won “without a single shot being fired”. Tell that to the grieving family of Jo Cox, the campaigning Labour MP gunned down last week. Farage promised that unless something was done to halt immigration, “violence will be the next step”. It looks like we’ve got a two-for-one deal on that one.

So, here’s the thing. This was never a referendum on the EU. It was a referendum on the modern world, and yesterday the frightened, parochial lizard-brain of Britain voted out, out, out, and today we've all woken up still strapped onto this ghost-train as it hurtles off the tracks. Leave voters are finding they care less about immigration now that their pension pots are under threat. Maybe one of the gurning pundits promising them pride and sovereignty should have mentioned that, but they were too busy lying about the NHS. The curtain has been torn away and now we all have to look at the men behind it. They are not good men.

Anyone feel like they’ve got their country back yet? No? That, after all, was the rallying cry of the Leave campaign – the transatlantic echo of "Make America Great Again". There’s a precedent for what happens when svengalis with aggressively terrible haircuts are allowed to appeal to parochialism and fear in the teeth of a global recession, and it isn’t pretty.


Read the rest of the article here. It speaks to me-and should to you, Because I guarantee, whatever your political beef is with the USA today, I can assure you Donald Trump is not the answer to it. He will kill you and your country in your sleep.

I now yield the floor to Mr. Oliver again:


One response so far

Jun 27 2016

New Words for the dictionary

Watching markets tank again, makes me want to keep beating the Brexit horse. Once again, thank you voters of the UK for giving me an opportunity to keep working well into my 60's. That night job as an Uber driver in a couple of years will be a hell of lot of fun.

Meanwhile, as the United Kingdom's corpse is being embalmed, a new word has joined the English language:


Meanwhile down under, there is a revision being considered to the Australian flag:


In more good news, it appears one's Brexit vote comes with a money back guarantee.


George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, in words that were eerily reminiscent of Hank Paulson's in 2008, reassured British citizens that the "fundamentals of the economy are sound".

Pro-tip. It didn't work for Paulson back then either.

Meanwhile, there are those who cling to the rather vain hope that this nightmare can all be undone:


While other people are realizing just how bad things are:


David Cameron, realizing his days as a government employee are limited, begins working on his resume:

Seriously though, this referendum proves H.L. Menken's old quote and one I have used before, "Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard."

Of course, we Americans should not get complacent. Especially the peculiar species of American voter that spouts the same old tired lines about " sticking it to the elites", "throwing of totalitarianism" and "sticking it to unelected policy makers"   Here is a serious point, if you, as an American, support Brexit-besides being wrong you may be just one of these people:



That's my best summation of the why, of American conservatives who support either / or Trump or Brexit.



And this is only Monday. Tip your waitress well, I may be bashing this insanity all week.



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7 responses so far