Archive for the 'Jump you fuckers!' Category

Jul 01 2014

The 140 character summary of the Hobby Lobby decision.

3 responses so far

May 28 2014

There is such a thing as decorum.

I once again, marvel at the stupidity of the pro gun community. The bodies from the Santa Barbara are hardly even cold-and yet we have to hear this:

"Your dead kids don't trump my Constitutional rights." – Joe the Plumber (yea, that guy) to the families of the Isla vista shooting victims,

 

Somehow, the word "douchebag" does not seem to cover it.  But then "Joe the Plumber" has a long history of stupidity. There are more eloquent ways of defending the Constitutionality of the 2nd Amendment. Sorry, but I find the statement callous, regardless of how it was prefaced.

Lets pretend shall we? Even if there is some merit to his argument ( of which there is not-again, the second amendment only makes sense when the first sentence is included), there is such a thing as timing and decorum. I mean really, did he have to make this point now? Really?

And he's not the only one. Look at this:

Here is a recording of a robocall received today by a voter in the 25th Congressional district, touting Tony Strickland's pro-gun stances, voting record, and support from organizations like the NRA.

The timing could hardly be more tasteless. Just yesterday, a UCSB student shot over a dozen people and killed six (three by stabbing) – most of them fellow students. Tony Strickland actually represented Santa Barbara and Isla Vista in the State Senate until late 2012, and many of these victims were likely former constituents of Strickland's.

I am always amazed these folks have a propensity to come out strongly immediately after a shooting. Can't they wait a while and be discrete? Can't they let the process of mourning go on? I mean after all-it is not like anyone is going to do anything substantial to stop it-or at the least, severely limit the ability of people to get guns they have no business having. 20 dead children? Too bad.  6 dead-13 wounded, "well I feel your pain but I have to have a gun to open carry to Chipolte".

I'm sorry, if you need more than a pistol, a shotgun and a rifle, to defend your family, then you have made some really bad lifestyle choices. And trust me on this one-I have made more than my fair share, but in all of them I never needed a weapon. 

This is neither the time or the place to have this discussion. That idiots choose to make it the time, completely disgusts me. Save your f*cked up arguments for when someone actually brings a meaningful gun control bill to the House floor. Because you will never have to use them. In our current world there is no Congressman with the ability to do so.

And idiots like Joe know that. So all they are doing is pissing into an open grave. I would hope even gun nuts find that offensive.

Charles Pierce sums it up well:

This is a country now at war with itself. This is a phrase that is generally tossed about when political debate gets too heated. It was popular to say it back in the 1960s, when it seemed quite possibly to be true, with leaders bleeding out on balconies in Memphis or kitchen floors in Los Angeles, and students bleeding out from gunfire on college campuses, and half-baked revolutionary idiots blowing themselves up in Greenwich Village. But this is not the same thing. This is a country at war with itself for profit. This is a country at war with itself because its ruling elite is too cowed, or too well-bribed, or too cowardly to recognize that there are people who are getting rich arming both sides, because the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun, so you make sure that it's easy for the bad guys to get guns in order to make millions selling the guns to the good guys. This is a dynamic not unfamiliar to the people in countries where brushfire conflicts and civil wars are kept alive because distant people are making a buck off them.  In Africa, war is made over diamonds and rare earths. In South America, war is made over cocaine. Here, for any number of reasons – because Adam Lanza went crazy or because Elliot Rodger couldn't get laid – and the only constant in all those wars is the fact somebody gets rich arming both sides…

 

There are not enough words to describe how these pro-gun fanatics suck.

 

 

 

 

5 responses so far

Dec 11 2013

The Zombie Eyed Granny Starver, hard at work

Yesterday afternoon, the Devil's apprentice himself, Paul Ryan ( Worthless Cocksucker-WI) and his Democratic counterpart Mrs Landingham (H/t to Charles Pierce for the term) announced they had reached a budget deal.

Some deal. Rather than go for the straightforward approach of repealing the rest of the Bush tax cuts and lifting the cap on Social Security ( and let me make this abundantly clear for the all the deficit scolds out there, worthless people that you too are, Social Security does not contribute to the deficit and its time you stupid people stopped saying that.)

Instead we get this bit of trickery designed to fuck a whole lot of us at the drive through:

In a move expected to save $6 billion, the Bipartisan Budget Act announced Tuesday by Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., calls for reducing annual cost-of-living adjustments for military retirees under the age of 62. Working-age military retirees would receive an annual pay adjustment that is 1 percentage point less than the rise in consumer prices. For example, the 1.7 percent COLA that took effect on Dec. 1 and will first appear in January checks would be just 0.7 percent for military retirees under age 62 but still be 1.7 percent for older retirees if the proposal were now in effect. The COLA reduction would be phased in three years. The December 2014 COLA would be reduced by 0.25 percent, the December 2015 COLA would be reduced by 0.5 percent and the full reduction would take effect with the December 2016 COLA. Disability retirees would not have their COLAs reduced. The plan could come to a vote in the House this week and, if it passes, be taken up by the Senate next week. The budget plan also saves $6 billion from changes in federal civilian retirement.

As Charles Pierce pointed out, once again the GOP gets to fuck over hard working people and steal,  while the Democrats simply can pat themselves on the back for politely letting them do it.

Apparently, the nation once again avoided a Grand Bargain by the skin of its teeth, but what makes me nervous is the fact that, at the press conference, the ZEGS spent most of his time celebrating what his side had gained out of the deal, while Mrs. Landingham spent most of her time celebrating the fact of the deal, and stressing that The American People would be glad to see both sides working together.

This is how the scale generally gets loaded in Washington — Republicans get enough of what they want so as to rest up for the next big grab while the Democrats throw themselves a parade to honor how mature and grown-up they are. For them, the deal is an end in itself. For the Republicans, it is a means to an end. The fight gets fixed that way. For all the huzzahs, you can hardly hear the cries of the people who are being sold down the river.

I am one of those people being sold down the river-and just reiterates for me why the Zombie Eyed Granny Starver has to go. If you have been reading here for a while you know that I have no sympathy for Paul Ryan, wishing fervently that he would drop dead in the early morning DC weather. There to be run over by a passing bus in his last brief moments of consciousness. And that would not even begin to repay him for the evil he conspires to do.

And take a look at the sleazy way this evil man tries to justify his thievery:

"We think it is only fair that hard-working taxpayers, who pay for the benefits that our federal employees receive, be treated fairly as well. We also think it is important that military families, as well as nonmilitary families are treated equally and fairly," he said.

Got that boys and girls? It's a back handed insult at federal employees and military retirees, as he implies that they don't work hard and have not earned their benefits. ( As opposed to say, greedy corporate CEO's) Not to mention its a double whammy for them since they have not had a pay raise since 2009 AND a lot are already contributing 15% of their salaries (same amount I have contributed since I left the military)  to our retirement accounts just to match the amount I would have been contributing were I still with my civilian corporation job. ( This due to the differences in how salaries are computed).

The Military coalition should be screaming bloody murder about this. So should a lot of other organizations. But they won't. It's for the children!

There are a whole bunch of other goodies tucked into this bill-many of them bad ideas that started not with politicians, but with budget hacks inside DOD. Who keep whining about treating people decently. And lets not even mention the abomination in the Defense bill that strips Convening Authorities of their authority to act in court martials. I'll have more on that tomorrow.

 There is a special place in hell reserved for you, Ryan,  and the rest of the herd. Please be speedily on your way.

6 responses so far

Dec 09 2013

“My country is a horror show.”

David Simon, speaking at a forum in Sydney Australia gave a very perceptive rundown about what ails the land of my birth. He points out very eloquently a theme that the Pope and others have been highlighting recently, namely that income inequality is dangerous  and if we don't do something about it, we are risking the very nation we claim to love.

You can read the entire thing here-and you should. I want to copy it and stick it in the face of every person who whines about how "socialist" the country is. As I have said before-they don't even know what the word means.

America is a country that is now utterly divided when it comes to its society, its economy, its politics. There are definitely two Americas. I live in one, on one block in Baltimore that is part of the viable America, the America that is connected to its own economy, where there is a plausible future for the people born into it. About 20 blocks away is another America entirely. It's astonishing how little we have to do with each other, and yet we are living in such proximity.

There's no barbed wire around West Baltimore or around East Baltimore, around Pimlico, the areas in my city that have been utterly divorced from the American experience that I know. But there might as well be. We've somehow managed to march on to two separate futures and I think you're seeing this more and more in the west. I don't think it's unique to America.

I think we've perfected a lot of the tragedy and we're getting there faster than a lot of other places that may be a little more reasoned, but my dangerous idea kind of involves this fellow who got left by the wayside in the 20th century and seemed to be almost the butt end of the joke of the 20th century; a fellow named Karl Marx.

I'm not a Marxist in the sense that I don't think Marxism has a very specific clinical answer to what ails us economically. I think Marx was a much better diagnostician than he was a clinician. He was good at figuring out what was wrong or what could be wrong with capitalism if it wasn't attended to and much less credible when it comes to how you might solve that.

You know if you've read Capital or if you've got the Cliff Notes, you know that his imaginings of how classical Marxism – of how his logic would work when applied – kind of devolve into such nonsense as the withering away of the state and platitudes like that. But he was really sharp about what goes wrong when capital wins unequivocally, when it gets everything it asks for.

That may be the ultimate tragedy of capitalism in our time, that it has achieved its dominance without regard to a social compact, without being connected to any other metric for human progress.

Mr Simon is writing about his astonishment that there are those who take utterly reprehensible ideas about abandoning the social compact and the original ideas of America as a commonwealth, in favor of a philosophy of out right selfish behavior.

That may be the ultimate tragedy of capitalism in our time, that it has achieved its dominance without regard to a social compact, without being connected to any other metric for human progress.

We understand profit. In my country we measure things by profit. We listen to the Wall Street analysts. They tell us what we're supposed to do every quarter. The quarterly report is God. Turn to face God. Turn to face Mecca, you know. Did you make your number? Did you not make your number? Do you want your bonus? Do you not want your bonus?

And that notion that capital is the metric, that profit is the metric by which we're going to measure the health of our society is one of the fundamental mistakes of the last 30 years. I would date it in my country to about 1980 exactly, and it has triumphed.

Capitalism stomped the hell out of Marxism by the end of the 20th century and was predominant in all respects, but the great irony of it is that the only thing that actually works is not ideological, it is impure, has elements of both arguments and never actually achieves any kind of partisan or philosophical perfection.

It's pragmatic, it includes the best aspects of socialistic thought and of free-market capitalism and it works because we don't let it work entirely. And that's a hard idea to think – that there isn't one single silver bullet that gets us out of the mess we've dug for ourselves. But man, we've dug a mess.

This is RMoney's 47% argument well refuted. But thanks to the Zombie Eyed Granny Starver and his buddies, the bad idea lives on and on.

And so in my country you're seeing a horror show. You're seeing a retrenchment in terms of family income, you're seeing the abandonment of basic services, such as public education, functional public education. You're seeing the underclass hunted through an alleged war on dangerous drugs that is in fact merely a war on the poor and has turned us into the most incarcerative state in the history of mankind, in terms of the sheer numbers of people we've put in American prisons and the percentage of Americans we put into prisons. No other country on the face of the Earth jails people at the number and rate that we are.

We have become something other than what we claim for the American dream and all because of our inability to basically share, to even contemplate a socialist impulse.

Socialism is a dirty word in my country. I have to give that disclaimer at the beginning of every speech, "Oh by the way I'm not a Marxist you know". I lived through the 20th century. I don't believe that a state-run economy can be as viable as market capitalism in producing mass wealth. I don't.

I'm utterly committed to the idea that capitalism has to be the way we generate mass wealth in the coming century. That argument's over. But the idea that it's not going to be married to a social compact, that how you distribute the benefits of capitalism isn't going to include everyone in the society to a reasonable extent, that's astonishing to me.

And so capitalism is about to seize defeat from the jaws of victory all by its own hand. That's the astonishing end of this story, unless we reverse course. Unless we take into consideration, if not the remedies of Marx then the diagnosis, because he saw what would happen if capital triumphed unequivocally, if it got everything it wanted.

As I said, the whole article is worth a read.

8 responses so far

Nov 10 2013

It is so close to my current situation, it hurts.

As the totally screwed up merger continues:

202257.strip

 

While I was back in Shopping Mall, I learned what I long suspected, the little weasel who engineered this abomination had been hard at work over the past six months planting ideas with all the wrong people. This, after he lied to all of us and said he was not.

Time to keep sending out resumes.

 

 

 

2 responses so far

Oct 22 2013

Where is Kent Brockman when you need him?

Well we met our new "team mates" yesterday. As I expected it, it did not go well:

 

It was an interesting exercise in surrealism. Our current boss was basically pre-empted by the GS-15 who seeks to enslave replace him. That issue has not been determined yet-but this guy acted like it had.

Then he went into an instructive little missive of how he and one of our flags went to visit John Deere last year, and told how they brought in an outside firm to help them "reorganize". And because of that experience we should not 'fear change".. ( BTW nice to know that you can afford the travel money for such little ventures-this while we beg for the merest of scraps).

Oh really? When our HR is telling us it knows nothing about this event-and when it does happen, one of the specific goals is a reduction of billets? My office mate and I just looked at each other in sheer amazement.

But I digress-he told us that little story to justify why he is turning to a contractor, one that works directly for him and depends on his decisions for continued work on said contract to organize this merger. He was not in the least happy when it was pointed out to him ( and the contractor person), that doing that is a blatant conflict of interest.

Perhaps a call to the IG might help?

Seriously, John Deere? That company has nothing in common with the organizations we work for. Unless it's veiled imagery for putting us all out to pasture.

Just blow me now.

Probably the most bizarre thing about the whole exercise, is that he seems to think we don't know exactly what happened-when in fact, everyone in the room knows what has transpired and what is transpiring. I mean after all, he's not the only one who talks to flag officers. An outside look? Really?

No one is afraid of change. They do have a desire not to do things just for stupidity's sake, however and that is what the logic behind this is. I've been though that more than couple other times.

The future days, suck they shall.

No responses yet

Oct 16 2013

They went slowly mad……

Well it looks like the mess may be over-for a while.

Our Galtian overlords have finally had to cave in and recognize that they were only going to get one thing:

 

The exercise was pointless from the word go. Sane people recognized that. They also recognize how we cannot persist to allow this wreckless bunch of teabaggers to make a mockery of the American politcal system.

This moment in American political life is insane. That a group of narrow-minded zealots could push us to the brink of economic ruin, that they maintain a base of support in their frenzied, quixotic, incompetent gambit, that there is an apparatus that exists to defend this kind of nonsense—it came on us slowly but it is no less an emergency. This is broken. This cannot go on. 

And if you can’t see that then it’s not just the world that’s gone mad. You're crazy too.

2 responses so far

Oct 11 2013

I’m tired of hearing about the children……

In this debt fight nonsense, the deficit scolds continue to say "its for the children". Whenever I hear that what I want to reply is something profane-and with good reason. The children lose no matter what, if the cruel and inhumane policy prescriptions are carried out. What the arrogant and pompous preachers of the deficit really want is a way to back out of the contract. Basically, the talk of children and their needs is just a smoke screen to hide a more sinister emotion, " I got mine, so fuck off!"

I wrote a year and a half ago why this a flawed viewpoint. I think it bears repeating now:

 

So its about the children, eh?

Also known as-Why Mark Steyn sucks.
 
Phib presumes to lecture me on what issues are really about-sadly I missed most of his lecture because I was having a good time over the weekend-sightseeing and practicing not procreative sex with the S.O. In a recent post, he asserted that he was tired of discussing:
 
This totally contrived non-controversy has almost left me looking to either retreat to my country acreage to wait out the rioting of the unworthy, or join James Cameron in the undying lands to watch to new Dark Age take hold.

 

The fact that some are trying to bring this non-issue up at this time in our republic makes me feel at times that this nation is not worthy of the generations of sacrifice that brought us here … but that is crazy talk. This nation has gone through worse, and in the end all will be well.

 
The issue is not putting a sheep's bladder on your John Thomas; it is what legacy we leave to our children. This is an economic crisis we cannot fix with a peace treaty or a post-war boom; no, nothing that simple – but we need to fix it sooner more than later.
 
Well, jolly good and dandy-it’s for the children is it? Well, on that you are right-but it’s also about telling those same children the correct story-not just the parts that suit your narrative. I’ve got some suggestions about some things you might want to tell your children to warm their hearts as they struggle to keep their heads above water in the multi-polar world you are going to bequeath them, but I’ll do that at the end of this post. One should leave with the things that need to be remembered.
 
And something that is not worthy of any brain memory space are the silly words of that pompous twit, Mark Steyn.  Not the master-as Phib would present him-but just another worthless piece of Fox News paid excrement. Quoting another worthless piece of excrement-Paul Ryan, Mark Steyn has the balls to assert that the discussion about demanding that all employers provde a standard level of preventative care, is somehow a clever ruse to divert public attention away from the President’s recently released budget. ( As a matter of policy here at Far East Cynic HQ-we do not link to idiots, thus you will have to Google what I am about to quote to you). 
 
This is a very curious priority for a dying republic. “Birth control” is accessible, indeed ubiquitous, and, by comparison with anything from a gallon of gas to basic cable,one of the cheapest expenses in the average budget. Not even Rick Santorum, that notorious scourge of the sexually liberated, wishes to restrain the individual right to contraception.
But where is the compelling societal interest in the state prioritizing and subsidizing it? Especially when you’re already the Brokest Nation in History. Elsewhere around the developed world, prudent politicians are advocating natalist policies designed to restock their empty maternity wards. A few years ago, announcing tax incentives for three-child families, Peter Costello, formerly Timmy Geithner’s counterpart Down Under, put it this way: “Have one for Mum, one for Dad, and one for Australia.” But in America an oblivious political class, led by a president who characterizes young motherhood as a “punishment,” prefers to offer solutions to problems that don’t exist rather than the ones that are all too real. I think this is what they call handing out condoms on the Titanic.
 
Statements like these are why Steyn needs to be held down and have his smirk and beard dry shaved off of him. Besides the fact that the prophylactics are not under discussion here-a clever dodge by many of Phib’s commenters to not discuss the real issue-the standardization of services provided by insurers, something they solved a long time ago here in Europe. The services that Steyn and others say “just pay for it yourself” can actually be rather expensive: contraceptive services and related counseling, a number of related preventive health services such as: patient education and counseling; breast and pelvic examinations; breast and cervical cancer screening according to nationally recognized standards of care; sexually transmitted disease (STD) and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) prevention education, counseling, testing and referral; and pregnancy diagnosis and counseling. Some of those items can run up a fairly healthy bill-more than just the cost of a box of condoms. Not a great deal for a wealthy man like Steyn-but some 800-1800(cost of screenings and prescriptions) a year in prescription costs can be a lot for someone making less than 25K a year. And what’s more –it’s clear that GOP candidates want to expand what the definition of contraceptive services means, if the “testimony” of that well known douchebag Presidential candidate Rick Santorum has any bearing:
 

Rick Santorum opposes all mandated coverage without co-pays. Rick Santorum is linking mandated coverage to abortion because it’s politically beneficial to him to do so. It doesn’t matter if the mandated coverage without co-pays is screening for gestational diabetes or amniocentesis, so this is (of course) not about abortion because screening for gestational diabetes without a co-pay (for example) has nothing to do with abortion, and Santorum opposes that, too. I know that because that’s what he said.
There’s really no reason to discuss amniocentesis specifically, other than the fact that media swallowed Santorum’s carefully calculated and misleading framing whole and thus discussed only what he wants to discuss. How about this headline: Rick Santorum is protecting large employers and health insurance companies, and he’s using disabled children to do that. The conservative opposition to mandated coverage in insurance policies is about opposing federal regulation of health insurance companies and large employers, not abortion, because conservatives oppose all mandated coverage without co-pays. All of the rest of this over-heated nonsense is misdirection. No one ever asked the religious leaders what other sections of the health care law that apply to large employers they opposed, and that’s a shame, because that would have been a very good question.
 
But then again-misdirection and avoidance of telling the entire story are Steyn’s trademark.  Steyn writes with "a shrill, mocking tone of moral certainty that consigns those who disagree with him to the status of appeasers or even terrorists; and a willingness to distort, misrepresent, and omit facts in order to advance his argument." One should expect nothing more from the man and his column linking the controversy over coverage to the deficit proves it yet again.
 
Which brings us back to the children. When you sit them down and tell then the story of the decline of a once great nation that failed to live up to its potential-make sure you tell them all the facts. Don’t leave out the important ones like pompous moral zealots like Steyn do. Make sure you tell them about the fact that:
 
The great majority of the debt that you so love to rail about-was racked up by a combination of spending on wars that we could not afford, and should probably have never gotten involved in, in the first place. And then tell them that –even for ones that were brought upon us, we failed to mobilize all of our potential strength and power to fulfill the first obligation to win quickly and decisively-because a presidential appointee wanted to prove some outdated theories on “transformation”. The other part was hinged on tax cuts that never should have been made.
 
And then tell ‘em that the President that appointed that same Secretary of Defense, refused to raise the necessary revenue to fund these wars. And decided to double down on not funding those wars when-as many critics had predicted-energy costs rose and impacted growth rates across the world and within the United States.
 
Tell them that in the end-both countries we went in to “save”-were hopeless basket cases, primarily because of the failings of the citizens of those countries. We, however, refused to pin any of the blame on those same tribally motivated people-even when it was clear that we could stay for 2 or 20 years and nothing would change. But we were able to send their aunts and uncles to die in the dusty corners of the far reaches of the American empire.
 
Then tell them tell them that the government-their government, pushed a policy of tax cuts for the richest one percent combined with a systematic dismantling of the regulations that were in place to prevent those same one percent from bringing down the house through unbridled greed.  Tell them that the lure of easy profits distracted the banking industry from its core mission: providing an efficient payments mechanism and assessing and managing risk. That instead of focusing on lending to small businesses and creating jobs-they concentrated on creating increasingly risky securities all so they could reap huge bonuses and transaction fees.  Don’t treat them to tired old explanations about the Community Reinvestment Act and Fannie and Freddie-without first pointing out that these criticisms are sheer nonsense. They had nothing to do with the 200 billion dollar bailout of AIG-which was based solely on derivatives, nor did Fannie or Freddie have anything to do with the massive overinvestment in commercial real estate.
 
Tell them about the money the banks were supposed to have used to restart credit. But didn’t.
 
Remind them that the so called “productive class” became so obsessed with short term returns-on which their bonuses and pay were based- that they engaged in repeated and reckless accounting gimmicks-that hid the truth.
 
Tell your children that because of your devotion to American Exceptionalism-they remain just one major illness or job loss away from bankruptcy and poverty ( assuming they aren’t there already)-that in the first decade of the 21st century, when faced with a clear moral and economic incentive to reform the healthcare system and in the end drive down the overall cost of a major driver of the government expenditures you love to lecture them about. Tell them that the rest of the advanced world solved this problem during the 80’s and 90’s offering the US some good ideas to pick and choose from-these countries providing equal or better care than the US,  but spending less than the US does-your country turned its back on literally millions of its fellow citizens in the name of “freedom”.
 
When you tell them the story of Greece-make sure you highlight the role the major banks and funds played in 2010 assaulting the Greek economy when they sold Greek bonds short. Be sure and tell them that the austerity doctrine that you and other “conservative” economic theorists pushed on them –simply created a death spiral that never increased aggregate demand. The banks and funds who demanded all this never got hurt-but the average middle class or lower Greek paid a terrible price. Tell them about the inherent Greek laziness-never too early to have them remember American superiority. But when you do-be sure to point out that the “people” who don’t pay taxes in Greece are mostly big corporations and professionals who can afford to hire people to help them evade taxes. ( Kind of like the GOP wants it to be over here). Remind them that banks got away with it and that linkage of the world economy made a default by Greece a nonstarter from the word go.
 
Tell them too-that companies that could well afford to invest in their companies failed to do so-but instead sold literally thousands of their workers down the river, to make a huge profit for one person. ( Insert well known CEO of a major corporation walking out on pension obligations).
 
Remind them that the banks pulled off one of the biggest frauds in history-but not one banker went to jail for it. Tell them too of the unbridled commodity speculation in 2008 –that literally starved people to death-but made a lot of people rich.
 
And then finally, tell them the God’s honest truth, that their country-a once great nation that still has great potential-frittered away the first decade of the 21st century by failing to recognize the changes that had taken place in the world. And in failing to adapt to those changes-it brought itself to the point where it failed at home and abroad. And in the end it had no one to blame but itself-because it let itself be seduced by an illusion: that things would stay the way they were some 30 years ago, because we were a great power.  We could have still been a great power had we made the necessary changes to fix our society and balance our budgets-but we were too easily fooled by our corporate masters, who were more than willing to write off some 90% of the American population to make sure they were comfortable.
 
Just like the Chinese.
 
 
 
 

10 responses so far

Oct 03 2013

The Vandals are hard at work.

Congress imposed a government shutdown? Fuck you, pay me. Oh, had a fire? Fuck you, pay me. The place got hit by lightning? Fuck you, pay me.

 

( All posts will start with this until the shutdown is over).

 

I awoke this morning at my usual time and I started to get up. I've got to get to work! Then I realized, that no, I don't have to because my worthless excuse for a Congressman, the not so Honorable Mo Brooks-had selfishly willed that I can't. So I got up,  made coffee,  surfed porn read the news, and tried to figure out how to file the insurance claims I need to file since I need every penny I can get.

It was never supposed to be this way, I tell myself. How did it get this crazy?

Well here is why:

This is the unspoken subtext of what the vandalism is all about. This is the real motivation behind all the tricornered hats and the incantations about liberty and all the conjuring words that have summoned up the latest crisis in our democracy. Corporate money is the power behind all of it, and that corporate money has but one goal — the creation of a largely subjugated population and a workforce grateful for whatever scraps fall from the table. To accomplish this, the corporate money not only had to disable the institutions of self-government that are the people's only real protection, it had to do so in such a way that the people expect less and less of the government and, therefore, less and less of each other, acting in the interest of the political commonwealth. (The dismantling of organized labor is a sideshow to the main event in that the goal there was to cripple organized labor's political power within the political institutions so that there would be no countervailing force that could be brought to bear against the destruction of its power in the workplace.For all the endless bloviation about the dead-hand of government, what the vandals in Washington are shooting for right now is a subject population whose tattered freedoms depend on the whimsical ethics of the American corporate class. This is the really deep game being played here, and they're more than halfway to winning it.

 

Got that? Having already fucked me and the lifesyle I need to live with the sequester-these assholes are now going for the rest of my existence. This, in a world where Jamie Dimon made 23 million dollars last year-with stock assets of worth over 3 times that-when the man should have been really getting ass raped in prison. ( For those that don't know-Jaime Dimon is the CEO of JPMorgan, the organization that fucked us all in 2008 with its bad bets on real estate, and then got bailed out 100 cents on the dollar). In case you have been living in a cave somewhere, let me remind you that JPMorgan is negotiating to pay $11 billion or so in fines to settle some regulatory investigations. These fines are on top of the billions of dollars of other fines that JPMorgan has already paid to settle other investigations, and the other billions of dollars of fines that JPMorgan will presumably pay to settle the investigations not settled in this $11 billion-ish settlement.  Interestingly enough-there are people who don't think he should be fired. The money is in the economy to fund the things that need to be funded in the Federal Budget.

Jamie Dimon does not have to sweat paying his bills. But he is part of the crew that is making sure I am sweating mine.

Fuck you, pay me.

 

3 responses so far

Oct 02 2013

What he said.

Congress imposed a government shutdown? Fuck you, pay me. Oh, had a fire? Fuck you, pay me. The place got hit by lightning? Fuck you, pay me.

 

( All posts will start with this until the shutdown is over).

 

The President summed up the issues at play in this shutdown pretty well yesterday. Its worth listening to his entire speech, not just the condensed or ignored version that would be shown at Fox Noise. (BTW I found it interesting that Fox was more concerned with showing Netanyahu's UN address than anything else-and they have taken their marching orders from Jim DeMint and referred to the shutdown as just a "slow down".)

 

 

 

He needs to talk this bluntly a lot more. 

“At midnight last night, for the first time in 17 years, the Republicans in Congress chose to shut down the Federal Government. Let me be more specific: One FACTION of one PARTY in one HOUSE of Congress in one branch of government shut down the government. All because they didn’t like ONE law.”

“The Republican shutdown did not have to happen, but I want everyone to understand why it did happen. The republicans in Congress refused to fund the government unless we defundedor dismantled the Affordable Care Act. They’ve shut down the government over an ideological crusade to deny affordable health insurance to millions of Americans. In other words, they’ve demanded ransom just to do their jobs…They don’t get to hold the entire economy hostage over ideological demands”…

This shutdown isn’t about spending, or deficits or budgets. After all, our deficits are falling at the fastest pace in 50 years. We’ve cut them in HALF since I took office. In fact, many of the demands the Republicans are now making would RAISE our deficit. So this shutdown isn’t about deficits or spending. It’s all about rolling back the Affordable Care Act…this, more than anything else, seems to be all the Republican party seems to stand for these days. It’s strange that one party would make keeping people uninsured the centerpiece of their agenda. But that is what it is.”…..

If you buy a car, and you don’t pay your car note, you don’t save money by not paying your car note. You’re just a deadbeat. If you buy a house, you don’t save any money by not authorizing yourself to pay the mortgage. You’re just going to get foreclosed on your home. That’s what this is about. This is routine. This is what they’re supposed to do as a routine matter.”

“Congress has to stop governing by crisis. They have to break this habit. It is a drag on the economy. It is not worthy of this country.

 

This is why, I have no time for people like this-who pontificate repeatedly about how "polite" conservatives are compared to progressives. For one thing its not true. The documentary evidence of the coarseness of the denizens of Earl Grey ville is on the record-and has been ever since this bunch of selfish folks and their manufactured outrage showed up on the scene. They have played havoc with the United States, and I am NOT SUPPOSED TO BE ANGRY ABOUT IT?

Spare me your condecension! You  have no right to it.

I'm sorry. Putting a gun to someone's head and threatening to kill them unless you do exactly what they say, does not exactly qualify as a "polite" thing to do.

To be sure, what the robber demanded of me – my money – was my own; and I had a clear right to keep it; but it was no more my own than my vote is my own; and the threat of death to me, to extort my money, and the threat of destruction to the Union, to extort my vote, can scarcely be distinguished in principle….

Let us be diverted by none of those sophistical contrivances wherewith we are so industriously plied and belabored – contrivances such as groping for some middle ground between the right and the wrong…

Fuck you, pay me.

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Oct 01 2013

Too much time on my hands……

Published by under Jump you fuckers!

Congress imposed a government shutdown? Fuck you, pay me. Oh, had a fire? Fuck you, pay me. The place got hit by lightning? Fuck you, pay me.

( All posts will start with this until the shutdown is over).

 

So the clock is ticking upward-and the place I work could not get its act together. SECDEF gave some guidance on who would and would not be exempted. Personnel supporting certain operations-such as one I work on were supposed to be exempted.

So why was I at home this afternoon? Pay or no pay-I should have been at work-per the SECDEF guidance. The discussions got heated this morning as the leadership slithered out of that stance in order to get all civilians to go home. The pessismist in me thinks this is some person trying to "save money". How?

Sigh. Sometimes we affix blame too far from home. DOD is its own worst enemy at times.

And what is this all about?

Kevin Drum explains:

The Republican Party is bending its entire will, staking its very soul, fighting to its last breath, in service of a crusade to….

Make sure that the working poor don't have access to affordable health care. I just thought I'd mention that in plain language, since it seems to get lost in the fog fairly often. But that's it. That's what's happening. They have been driven mad by the thought that rich people will see their taxes go up slightly in order to help non-rich people get decent access to medical care.

That's a pretty stirring animating principle, no?

Fuck you, pay me.

11 responses so far

Sep 30 2013

The trouble with mitigation

Henry Hill: [voice over] Now he's got Paulie as a partner. Any problems, he goes to Paulie. Trouble with a bill, to Paulie. Trouble with cops, deliveries, Tommy, he calls Paulie. But now he has to pay Paulie every week no matter what. "Business bad? Fuck you, pay me. Oh, had a fire? Fuck you, pay me. The place got hit by lightning? Fuck you, pay me."

 

So tomorrow morning-if all goes as I expect it to. I will go into work, put my files in order, write a snarky "out of office" e-mail message, bemoaning the inability of Congress to do its Constitutionally appointed duty and passing along my sincere hope that every Republican member of Congress dies tomorrow night in a fire- and then I will shut down my computers, lock my files in the safe and head out the door to my car. And thus will begin the long lonely countdown to see if I can my next month's rent-and the house payment on the house in Shopping Mall.

No one, even the worst hater of Obama,  should be rooting for a government shutdown. And yet- I have read some pretty messed up people advocating exactly that. "Shut the damn thing down for year!". These morons actually believe that a government shutdown would not affect them at all. I weep when I think that some of the stupid people saying this, also wear the ring. They may wear the ring all right-but they long ago forgot what it stood for, or the real basis for the concept of the "citizen soldier". These people make me ashamed sometimes to be an American and a graduate of my alma mater. Notice I said sometimes-before anyone lays into me. My alma mater has also produced many fine men-but some folks do lose their way.

I wonder if some of that blase' ignorance is caused by the fact that we do during shutdowns what we always do. We muddle through it. Consider this, all you nay sayers. Hard working men like Maurice will go to work tomorrow-with no guarantee of getting paid back for his work, because what he does is necessary to the safety of his community. He does not agree with me in the least about the administration-but he will still get screwed by the shutdown.  The place I work at will have a military population doing twice the work it normally does. That will be repeated over 100's of locations.

Now to me-these things kind of miss the point. These mitigations allow shutdowns to happen. I keep thinking to myself, "Why not do the damn thing right? Have the government shutdown for real-all of it."

Air traffic would have to stop for lack of air traffic controllers.

Store shelves would rapidly become empty for lack of deliveries-or lack of safe products on its shelves.

Navy ships should just steam to the nearest port-and go cold iron.

Declare it open season for Mexicans to come streaming into Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California-because the border patrol would not be on duty.

Watch the markets freeze up because of lack of federal funds. Or better yet, watch creditor nations  sell just a small proportion of their American assets, they could send Wall Street into a tailspin, with unpleasant implications for the net worth of many Republicans and Democrats.

Watch literally thousands of Americans die on highways, and other venues for lack of safety inspections. If it went on long enough-some folks would die from tainted food.

Deny any guards at any government facility. Just leave the gates open and walk away. Open house for terrorists! 

And lots lots more.

Now that would be a shutdown. It might actually put the fear of God in both Congress and the hapless tea party dimwits who encourage this kind of irresponsibility. I think it would ensure that any shutdown would be short.

"You are talking nonsense!", you say. Sure I am-but its no more or less nonsensical than the idea that a small group of privileged Americans get to hold the country hostage. These assholes think they have nothing to lose.  Thanks to Republican legislatures back home they all have gerrymandered districts that protect them from any Democratic challenges.

And,  I might add, some dedicated Federal workers- who contrary to the popular caricature of them as lazy moochers-have a strong sense of duty.

What we have in America when Congress screws the pooch tonight is not an immediate Armageddon.  Rather its more like a slow stiffening of our country's body with rigor mortis. The country is dying all right-but instead of blowing up in an instant it just dies slowly.

Which gives the terrorists in Congress more time to play with matches in a dynamite magazine.

“Shut down” doesn’t really capture the impact of what’s more like a spending freeze that will gradually spread through the government like ice forming in water. That means its effects may creep up on citizens who don’t interact with the bureaucracy daily. Initially, a shutdown will be little more than a symbol of US dysfunction, but each passing day will make its economic impact more tangible, especially if prolonged squabbling spooks consumer and business confidence.

The shutdown is essentially a legal problem: Republicans in Congress refused to endorse a spending bill unless it delayed the Affordable Care Act, the law delivering health insurance to poorer Americans, which starts to take effect on Oct. 1. Now, when the new fiscal year starts, government officials won’t have the authority to spend new money.

The government doesn’t shut down “essential” services that protect life or would be more costly to suspend than keep going. That means soldiers stay on duty (though their pay is delayed) and nuclear reactors stay open, but most financial regulators  and trade negotiators are sent home without pay. Medicare and Social Security will keep paying out, since they are paid for out of trust funds, though the checks may be late arriving. Many departments and contracts will be able to continue using money that is already appropriated before that, too runs out.

The longest shutdown was 21 days. I have reason to think that this one may be longer. Because we have never had a Congress this full of lunatics before. I hope I am wrong.

You can call this a lot of things, but "gridlock" should not be one of them. And you can fault many aspects of the President's response — when it comes to debt-default, I think he has to stick to the "no negotiations with terrorists" hard line. But you shouldn't pretend that if he had been more "reasonable" or charming he could placate a group whose goal is the undoing of his time in office.

The real question now is what Boehner, McConnell, et al. can do about their hard-liners. A lot depends, for Americans and many others, on their success or failure.

So I have one message to Congress, courtesy of Henry Hill: 

Fuck you, pay me. 

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Sep 24 2013

Got to have someone to blame….

I subscribe to Charles Pierce's first law of Blog Economics , namely: "Fk The Deficit. People got no jobs. People got no money."

Pierce rightly notes that with the suicidal plunge of the teabag wing of the Republican party over the ACA, " the deficit fetishists are back. Even Messrs. Simpson and Bowles have rolled away the stone. They have their commission's recommendations to wave around. The Fix The Debt frauds are wandering the Green Rooms. While all this scrambling about defunding the ACA is going on, it is very likely that the various cultists in Congress, at the instigation of the White House, might decide to start feeding Vaal again."

Blame the douchebags members in the tea party? But of course. But it also turns out there may have been another culprit all along.

The Normans-those bastards!
 

Nearly four years ago, I began writing a novel, set in the aftermath of the Norman conquest of 1066. Before I began to write, I spent six months sitting in the Bodleian library poring over books and journals to familiarise myself with the period. I soon realised that, apart from the story of the Battle of Hastings that everyone learns at school, I knew hardly anything about the impact of the conquest. I began to understand, too, how much of that impact is still with us.

 

By the end of the process, I had come to a slightly disquieting conclusion: we are still being governed by Normans.

 

Take house prices. According to the author Kevin Cahill, the main driver behind the absurd expense of owning land and property in Britain is that so much of the nation's land is locked up by a tiny elite. Just 0.3% of the population – 160,000 families – own two thirds of the country. Less than 1% of the population owns 70% of the land, running Britain a close second to Brazil for the title of the country with the most unequal land distribution on Earth.

 

Much of this can be traced back to 1066. The first act of William the Conqueror, in 1067, was to declare that every acre of land in England now belonged to the monarch. This was unprecedented: Anglo-Saxon England had been a mosaic of landowners. Now there was just one. William then proceeded to parcel much of that land out to those who had fought with him at Hastings. This was the beginning of feudalism; it was also the beginning of the landowning culture that has plagued England – and Britain – ever since.

 

The dukes and earls who still own so much of the nation's land, and who feature every year on the breathless rich lists, are the beneficiaries of this astonishing land grab. William's 22nd great-granddaughter, who today sits on the throne, is still the legal owner of the whole of England. Even your house, if you've been able to afford one, is technically hers. You're a tenant, and the price of your tenancy is your loyalty to the crown. When the current monarch dies, her son will inherit the crown (another Norman innovation, incidentally, since Anglo-Saxon kings were elected). As Duke of Cornwall, he is the inheritor of land that William gave to Brian of Brittany in 1068, for helping to defeat the English at Hastings.

 

And the Americans adopted a lot of British traditions-although the teahadists firmly deny it. Wealth inequality being one.

It might behoove our Galtian overlords to remember that England had more than a few ups and downs over the years in its quest towards total Plutocracy. "Though the Normans were never expelled, the spirit of the silvatici can be traced throughout later English history, from the Peasants' Revolt to the tales of Robin Hood. Not everyone takes conquest lying down. Today's elites might like to take note."

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Aug 09 2013

Life in the bubble

The other day, I was involved in a discussion about income inequality. Now the term "income inequality" is indeed something of a misnomer, in that many people interpret it as meaning that one who believes it is a problem,  is advocating a standard income for all. Which is the furthest thing from the truth. Of course there will be differences of outcomes in a growing economy. However, what the term income inequality really refers to is the ratio: The fact that growing numbers of American corporations are hauling in wads of cash for the elite who run the corporation without doing anything to help the constituencies that they-as publically chartered corporations (or at the least, entities that operate in the public sphere)-interact with and represent.

The discussion spriraled quickly, as they so often do these days, into conservative talk radio talking points with someone inevitably spouting the completly bogus and unethical line: " Stop trying to take from others and instead go out and make your own money. Stop being jealous of the success of others."

It is total and complete bullshit. Here is why:

One of the big reasons the U.S. economy is so lousy is that big American companies are hoarding cash and "maximizing profits" instead of investing in their people and future projects

This behavior is contributing to record income inequality in the country and starving the primary engine of U.S. economic growth — the vast American middle class — of purchasing power. (See charts below).

If average Americans don't get paid living wages, they can't spend much money buying products and services. And when average Americans can't buy products and services, the companies that sell products and services to average Americans can't grow. So the profit obsession of America's big companies is, ironically, hurting their ability to accelerate revenue growth.

One obvious solution to this problem is for big companies to pay their people more — to share more of the vast wealth that they create with the people who create it.

The companies have record profit margins, so they can certainly afford to do this.

But, unfortunately, over the past three decades, what began as a healthy and necessary effort to make our companies more efficient has evolved into a warped consensus that the only value that companies create is financial (cash) and that the only thing managers and owners should ever worry about is making more of it.

This view is an insult to anyone who has ever dreamed of having a job that is about more than money. And it is a short-sighted and destructive view of capitalism, an economic system that sustains not just this country but most countries in the world.

This view has become deeply entrenched, though.

 

The authors of the viewpoint that it is nothing but envy, are engaging in group selfishness. They justify their own selfishness, by projecting on others the idea that they have a right to be that way. They don't.

In other words, you get told that anyone who suggests that great companies should share the value they create with all three constituencies instead of just lining the pockets of shareholders is an idiot.

After all, these folks say, one law of capitalism is that employers pay their employees as little as possible. Employees are just "costs." You should try to minimize those "costs" whenever and wherever you can.

This view, unfortunately, is not just selfish and demeaning. It's also economically stupid. Those "costs" you are minimizing (employees) are also current and prospective customers for your company and other companies. And the less money they have, the fewer products and services they are going to buy.

Obviously, the folks who own and run America's big corporations want to do as well as they can for themselves. But the key point is this:

It is not a law that they pay their employees as little as possible.

It is a choice.


It is indeed a choice, and a poor one. One thing I have noticed however,is  that most of the people who think they have a responsibility to chastise me-live in a bubble of belief. Primarily they believe that nothing bad is going to happen to them, they are fine, and always will be. And furthermore, if anything bad does happen to someone else, its all that other person's fault for being unprepared. This arrogant attitude persists, even though they themselves are just one serious illness, or a layoff away from catastrophe themselves. Nor do they feel a responsibility to see the situation change. After all, "they give to charity". Which has zero to do with the central problem at hand.

If that is not hypocritical-I don't know what is.
 

11 responses so far

May 16 2013

I have seen the whole of the internet…..

And trust me-its not pretty.

I have been in a very pessimistic mood lately. I think it has a lot to do with the transactional nature of the interactions we have with others on the internet. I’ll expand upon that in a couple of paragraphs, but it has me wondering whether the time has come to unplug entirely.  It would probably return a lot of time to me-but that said, I am not sure how I would use it. In the vernacular it is known by the more descriptive term, committing Internet suicide.

NOTE: Please not the word “Internet” in front of the “S” word. I am not mentally disturbed and will not do anything towards my real existence.

I first read about it in a computer article. Internet Suicide is the act of removing your online presence from cyberspace.

Sick of horribly embarrassing things showing up when potential employers Google your name? Tired of everyone knowing you live in a garden level dungeon apartment? Perhaps you just don't like the fact the internet makes you easy to find. Thankfully, it's not that hard to delete yourself entirely. Here's how to do it.

As most bloggers eventually discover, it’s hard to blog in anonymity forever. A lot of people now know my “real” identity and I am fine with that. What I am not fine with is the idea that people think they have a right to make comprehensive value judgments about a person based on solely on what one discusses or argues about on Facebook, in a blog, or on Twitter or any other venue. I am a lot more complex than that-and I think most people are the same way. Yet as I have pointed out in several humorous posts and not so humorous posts-gone on long enough-any internet discussion that goes on, spirals down into an angry oblivion. Especially in today’s politically polarized society. It is a coarsening factor in our American society-and its creating a lot of the political problems that we now have to deal with. Blogs and people were supposed to be better than that. Sadly, they are not.

The herd mentality is alive and well in the world of the blogosphere-a lot more so than when I started blogging back in 2005. The popular response is that “well both sides do it-it is not just a conservative thing”. That’s true-but there are differences between the way conservatives and liberals approach the tactics of internet discussions. Definitions of “civilized discussion” differ a lot. One man’s mannerly discussion is another man’s gang beating.

Conservatives tend to believe in moral absolutes a lot more than liberals seem to. Liberals-not near as much. ( Which is probably why they are liberal-they have seen the world and discovered the hard way that , in general, things are not simply black and white-but rather an overriding shade of gray).

Another thing is that conservatives hate it when you dismiss the source of their information. They come at you saying you are not discussing the main points or “dealing with issues”. I am sorry-in many cases the source is the issue. If you are quoting from Breitbart, the National Review, or several other sources-it means the veracity of the material you cite is suspect to begin with. Sorry, but it is true. There are many sources on the internet-not all of them are good. It is perfectly acceptable to be dismissive of the trash that resides in over half of Memeorandum. Liberals, I feel are not burdened so much-mainly because they place a higher value on providing scrutiny of sources anyway. The “well MSNBC is biased too” argument grows tiresome-they forget that MSNBC is not nearly as successful as Fox is. And as Jon Stewart loves to point out, they have not made it an art form to complain about control of content-while at the same time being the biggest practitioners of it.

One thing I have always been slow to recognize is that there are simply some people that can never be convinced-no matter how hard you try. These people live to make trouble and they love to reinforce their own self worth by trashing the merit of the other person. It has gotten me into online trouble far too often. More so in my early years of Facebooking and Blogging-but it still happens now.  The ideal solution to such a situation is never to play at all-or walk away early. It is not cowardly to that-its actually the more prudent path. Especially,  when you have been drinking. I have a hard time remembering that and I really need to do so. There are a lot of supremely self confident people out there who have perfect lives and hate your life because it does not meet their predetermined moral standard. It must be nice to have that level of self confidence. I know I don’t and certainly don’t place much value in their moral judgments anyway.

At some point, I believe, you have to come to peace with your internet personality-and accept yourself for who you are and be comfortable with who you are on line. If others don’t like that-it is their problem, not yours –and if that means you have to resort to the block button to regain some peace and sanity, then so be it. It’s a lot better than getting an ulcer. So I have made a resolution to be more comfortable in my own internet skin. I am who I am –and more importantly-you are never going to be me. So stop trying to tell me how to live my life.

If you are looking for a point in this post, there really isn’t one. I am writing to work through my own issues and and I am allowing you to be my “counselor” –so relax and enjoy the ride. This is nothing more than "a steam of my conciousness" post. I get to do that from time to time. Unlike the people in the lovely land of certitude-I do not believe in moral certitudes or self confidence. Such is the lot of the man of thought.

Help me to always give 100% at work
12% on Monday.
23% on Tuesday.
40% on Wednesday.
20% on Thursday.
5% on Friday.

And help me to remember…
When I'm having a really bad day,
and it seems that people are trying to piss me off,
that it takes 42 muscles to frown and only 4…
to extend my middle finger and tell them to bite me!
Amen."

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