Posts Tagged ‘obama

15
Apr
09

Tea Baggers – Disingenuous, Ignoramus Boobs

The blogosphere is alight today with opinion pieces denouncing these rube-magnet “Tea Parties.” Here’s another one.

cause bush told the truth!

cause bush told the truth!

First of all, much like a circus, these Tea Parties put on display for the rest of us to see, the imbecilic nature of Right Wing nutjobs. The ones who vote for their big biz Republican politicians who enact policy that directly injures their very constituents. Who is dumb enough to believe the Dick Armeys, Newt Gingriches, Limbaughs, Coulters, Hannitys, Glenn Becks, Michael Steeles, Rick Perrys, Mark Sanfords, Sarah Palins, Michelle Bachmanns, David Vitters? Who is dumb enough to be whipped into a gun-buying, revolution-shouting frenzy of inanity by this honorless Republican leadership? Go to a Tea Party tonight and find out.

DEFICIT

Here’s why these people are disingenuous: they are protesting government spending that would drive up the deficit. Well, their precious Reagan drove up the deficit, George H. W. Bush and his highly successful son drove up the deficit and nary a Tea Party was had. Where was the outrage? I remember a bunch of Right Wingers getting their panties in a bunch over the fact that Bill Clinton was sucked off by an intern, but did they ever congratulate him over balancing the budget? No. They don’t care about the deficit. They’re group-think idiots of the highest order.

They keep saying they don’t want our kids to inherit a huge deficit. Yet, they don’t give a shit if our kids inherit an environment raped by big business because we were to ignorant to switch to renewable energy when we had the chance. They don’t care if our kids inherit a country with semi-automatic weapons carpeting the countryside. They don’t care if our kids have affordable health care and access to decent medical attention. Their claims of concern for our kids is false and hollow and nauseating.

TAXES

And they’re complaining about taxes. Well, let’s see. Obama is instituting the broadest tax cut in history. And he’s only raising taxes of the wealthy to less than they were under Reagan. In fact, the GOP’s proposed budget again lowers taxes for the wealthy, increasing them for the lower and middle classes, according to this PDF put together by Citizens for Tax Justice. They also discovered that the GOP plan would cost $225 billion more than the Democratic plan.

These Right Wingers are also people calling for the U.S. to attack Iran, North Korea and launch a military operation in Somalia and off its coast – yet they don’t want to PAY for it. Funny how their buttboy Bush didn’t want to pay for his war of choice either – refusing to fund the soldiers on the battlefield appropriately and refusing to fund their care when they return home. Yet, the Bush administration sent billions of dollars to defense contractors who struck it rich while unable to account for millions, if not billions of dollars they received.

HYPOCRITES

We’re seeing calls for Revolution – for people to arm themselves as if to somehow thwart the government. How ridiculously hypocritical these white, racist conservatives are being! What if members of the left made these anti-government slogans? How unamerican we would be labeled –  how unpatriotic.

This is a lunatic fringe minority of the American demographic and they want to control the fates of the rest of us. They would rather overthrow the legally-elected government representing the views of the majority of this country. The election was a blowout – the American people spoke and were absolutely demanding a change in leadership and these crazy teabag freakos would attempt to undermine the very democracy innumerable people have shed their lives to give us. They seek to weaken the country and cheapen the government system that makes them so proud only when it serves their selfish purposes.

LIBERTY

How deep does these people’s inability to process logic and thought go? Consider their calls for liberty. Bush used illegal warrantless wiretapping on the American people (and most relevant journalists). Right Wingers were silent. Bush banished Habeas Corpus from the Constitution. The Right Wingers were silent.  Bush turned the Justice Department into a partisan death squad. Right Wingers were silent. The illegality of gays to marry inhibits the liberties of a vast number of Americans. Marijuana as never caused the death of a person, yet the liberty to smoke pot legally is almost non-existent. Women’s liberty to choose to end a pregnancy would be taken away if these conservos had their way.

The only liberty they want is to take away the rights and decisions of those who disagree with them. They would oppress the rest of us for their own, ignorant, baseless, uninformed reasons.

DOUCHEBAGS

This shade of political activist allows the terrorism of the rest of the country by easing the release of assault weapons onto our streets and into the hands of criminal elements both

yeah, and Bush wasnt? Jeez....

yeah, and Bush wasn't? Jeez....

domestic and outside our boarders. Their answer is that we should all arm ourselves, encouraging the possibility of gun battles in our neighborhoods.

These Tea Baggers do not understand the realities of their theories and the results of their lunacy. While their opinions on deregulation and taxation and government spending, etc. sound quite wonderful, they have unintended consequences and materialize in ways that damage this country’s economy, civil liberties and safety – as was illustrated so clearly under Bush.

The Tea Baggers had their chance. They controlled the White House and Congress for six of the last eight years and their policies tore this country asunder, taking it to the brink of collapse. This subgroup of political outliers would dictate liberties not only to the rest of Americans – but hang the rest of the world out to dry, attacking many without justification and at the same time arousing indignation that we sacrifice our “sovereignty” by abiding by U.N. Resolutions.

These people are idiots – the lowest common denominator of the uninformed. They are being used by people and leadership whose policies affect these “protestors” negatively in a significant way. Yet, time and time again, Republican “tax and deficit” lies – and the use of god, guns and gays – gets these turkeys hot to trot in an attempt to inhibit progress and improvement of this great nation.

It’s real cute, the mock revolution and display of boobery by the ‘baggers. I’m glad the rest of us can sit back and chuckle at the baffoonery without real fear their opinions will gain any traction. In my opinion, the best way to overcome this circus of ‘tards is to stay informed. Read,read,read. And remember the last eight years.

In short, take a hike, tea baggers. You don’t know what you’re talking about and the rest of us (ahem, the majority) don’t need or want you.

And I don’t want to hear any shit about the Tea Parties being Libertarian before being hijacked by the Right Wing wackos. This blog is meant for those hijackers. The tea bags are being funded by the Right Wing death squads and that’s why I’m responding so vehemently.

UPDATE 4.16.09: After looking at all the pics of these rallies, it was clear there were no minorities amongst the Tea Bag douchers. A klan-esque political movement of old, white people that is tasteless to minorities, gay people, non-believers and progressive women will go nowhere and gain bupkis. And Rove thinks this “movement is significant.” Um…right. He also referred to Democrats’ “tax and spend tendencies.” Why don’t we talk about how great the “no tax, but sill spend a lot” policies of the Republicans are? I guess it’s true. Right Wingism does rot the brain.

10
Apr
09

Why Bush, Cheney – and those damn Tea Partiers – Aren’t Smart

Forgive me for stating the obvious.

In the April issue of Real Simple magazine, science writer Jonah Lehrer pens an article entitled, “10 Ways to Be a Better Thinker.” It was quite interesting. My favorite was #5 – Take Long Showers, which says “moments of insight often arrive when you’re not aware that you’re thinking of the problem.” This is probably why my best blog ideas come to me right before I’m about to fall asleep and there’s no way in hell I’m getting out of bed. Suffer for my art? Please.

But #8 and #10 were the most interesting to me in terms of analyzing our political leaders, which I’m wont to do quite often. The eighth suggestion is to Study Your Mistakes, “One common trait of successful people is their willingness to focus on their fumbles.” And, on a similar note, Ten advises us to Think About Our Thinking, “Metacognition, as this is known, is a crucial skill. Many scientists argue that the best predictor of good judgment isn’t intelligence or experience; it’s the willingness to engage in introspection.”

These appear to be simple, basic concepts regarding the quality of thought. Yet, when you look at the majority of our political leaders, you will find a demographic either devoid of the capability of such improved mental activity or you find people simply unwilling to admit fault and self-analyze. So many of these dolts seem to have one speed of thought, with self-imposed blinders preventing them from the most important of decisions: how to change for the better.

We are witnesses to such blocks of immovable concrete when we see Republicans on television refusing to understand the realities and results of the decisions of the last eight years. They keep calling for lower taxation for the upper economic echelons and increased deregulation. There is absolutely no acknowledgment of fault or quality instances of introspection.

W. Bush says in Dead Certain, a great look at the man’s presidency by Robert Draper, that he HAD to believe that his decision to go into Iraq was correct. He would never allow himself to even consider the idea that perhaps the war had been a mistake. When you’re playing with thousands, perhaps over a million people’s lives, this attitude seems almost criminal for those with their fingers over the red button.

But that was the biggest criticism of Bush, wasn’t it? That the man wasn’t intellectually curious, probably due to the fact that he wasn’t introspective. His foot was on the accelerator regardless of whether there was a brick wall in his path or not (while the rest of us are in the back seat). It was only a “disappointment” that weapons of mass destruction weren’t found in Iraq. When asked what went wrong with Katrina, Bush immediately asks whether he should have landed Air Force One instead of simply flown over the area.

There is a grave, almost developmentally challenged inability by Bush to analyze situations in their totality or through the lenses of those with differing opinions. And his supporters have the same problem. Even now, many across the media’s various forms insist Iraq was a success and is now doing fine. Five soldiers died today in Mosul in a suicide truck bombing. There is widespread violence still and the region is extraordinarily unstable. Ask an Iraqi if they think the war was a success. It’s their country, after all. And these are real people! Over a million Iraqis have died since the war started and Bush talks about them like they’re little Lego men in one of his Lego forts. It’s despicable.

This lack of critical thinking skill is also what led Cheney to declare in May of 2005 that the Iraqi insurgency is in its last throes or that Obama is making us less safe because he is changing Bush’s policies. Cheney will never acknowledge that their administration’s policies allowed Iran’s influence and power to increase exponentially and caused an explosion in global hatred toward America.

People can disagree with Obama’s policies, as I do with some, all they want. But read the man’s books, look without prejudice at his decision-making process and you will see an increased capacity for deliberation, introspection, intellectual curiosity, consideration of mistakes, and appreciation for not only differing views, but everyone’s views. That’s why we elected him. Whatever you say about his policies, the man’s process is an ocean of improvement over our last commander in chief.

And all these little Tea Party shenanigans Fox seems to be orgasming over – the ones calling for the impeachment of Obama before he has even been in office 100 days – reveal how simple-minded the radical fringe of the Bush supporters are. None of them would give you a decent assessment regarding the mistake they made reelecting Bush. Nor would they be introspective enough to appreciate change or understand that the rest of us deserve a president who

This is what Im talking about. Reality has left the building.

This is what I'm talking about. Reality has left the building.

represents us as well. None of them would ever recognize that the policies they support, the ones that were instituted over the last eight years, have brought our country dishonor, ill-repute, economic woe and autocratic policies. They have committed a great harm and the rest of us have stood up and said no more.

I understand the pendulum swings politically. Right now, the Far Right Wing should have some dignity, grace and allow the rest of us – the majority of us (for now) – to institute the policies we believe will not only rescue us from this iniquitous past, but improve our now and our future. They should be a little introspective and come to grips with the fact that most of us do not agree with them, most of us support Obama at this point, and we have a right to resist the oppression they would impose.

23
Mar
09

AIG Bonus Pay – Focus Anger Productively

Ichiwawa!! Short-story version: Those useless waste-of-spaces up at AIG figured out a way to make themselves rich by basically selling thin air and are now being rewarded for their b-to-the-ullshit as the rest of the world watches their savings tank faster than a single girl’s sobriety at a gay bar.

Am I mad? Yer damn right I’m mad!

BUT, demanding the bonuses be taken back or creating some Terri Schiavo-esqe tax legislation to swat these sonsabitches’ testicles will not solve one iota of the problem that created this hellacious economic debacle. In fact, these demands are distracting from addressing the real issue – lack of regulation. And lemme tell you, the free marketeers are hoping this “populist tantrum” will do just that – create a huge spectacle refocusing Congress’ efforts away from bringing back appropriate regulation that would have prevented this mess in the first cotton-pickin’ place.

Derivatives once again need to be outawed – as they were back in the early 20th century. Phil Gramm and his little butt buddies in Congress brought forward legislation back in late 1999 – that Bill Clinton signed – deregulating derivatives. And these AIG jackasses sold them. Allowing someone to basically buy “insurance” that a company, such as Overstock.com, will go out of business when the purchaser has no interest in the company whatsoever makes absolutely no sense. It is legalized, unregulated gambling – especially when AIG claims falsely they could back this insurance. (If you need to learn more about derivatives, watch this 60 Minutes program.)

Why were they allowed to get away with this? Because the free-marketeers, “capitalism in its purist form is the best way to run the economy” peeps erased any power by the government to regulate or monitor these new “products” on the Wall Street Market.

Now, I don’t know about you – but I haven’t heard one word from Obama or Geithner regarding reinstating these market regulations. I haven’t heard Barney Frank or Chris Dodd or any of the main players “outraged” about the AIG bonuses calling for new legislation that would focus directly on these bubble schemes the idiots on Wall Street erected.

This is the moment, rife with public anger, to enact these regulations that will prevent the further shredding of our capitalist strength. A completely unfettered free market allows the know-hows to screw over the rest of us and bring everybody and their cousin down the toilet with them. We need these regulations. Without them, this Corporatocracy of America will continue to allow big biz to shit all over everyone who doesn’t have their hand in the pot.

So, tomorrow, when Bernanke and Geithner go before Congress, we need less talk about these AIG bonuses – they’re just red herrings – and more talk about the detriments of derivatives and short selling.

24
Feb
09

Presidents and Monkeys

As a white person, I didn’t know what to think at first of the furor regarding the NYPost cartoon monkefying Obama:

My first feeling were mixed. It is unacceptable to compare black people to monkeys in light of our country’s shameful history of doing so. But I also considered how many times I compared Bush to monkeys in this blog as well as in my overall thought of the man. For example, a simple google of “Bush monkey” will produce:

There are a lot, lot more.

Do I feel entitled enough to hang on to my right to compare presidents to apes in light of the fact that our current president is black? No, I don’t. The advancement of race relations is far more important to me and I say this as a person who relishes the frequency of offense amidst all our glorious free speech. And, when it came to comparing Bush to primates, I felt as though I were offending monkeys more than dope-in-chief anyhow.

Furthermore, I have found, especially in recent conversations, that demographic groups who have always been empowered (ahem, white males) find it very difficult to understand when certain groups (such as women) get pissed when empowered groups (white males) call them by offensive names (bitch, cunt, whore, etc.). At some point, words and comparisons don’t belong to you. I’ll never use the N-word. Ever. Certain offenses achieve necessary progress. Others reverse it. And that’s not my priority.

So, for the next four, hopefully eight if all goes well, years – let’s drop the monkey/president comparisons. We’re all intelligent enough to find better ways to express our views regarding Obama’s decisions and behavior anyway.

23
Feb
09

Best Videos From Last Week 2.23.09: Fox’s Right Wing Agenda, Concentration of Wealth, Regulation

There was some good TV happening last week, here’s what I found notable (hint – read the stuff at the bottom. really):

  • With more and more voters edging toward the left or moderate (and, ahem, away from the Radical Religioner Party), Fox is having a harder time hiding their right wing agenda. CNN’s Howard Kurtz catches the latest Oh No, They Didn’t! moment on Fox.
  • MOST WORTH WATCHING: I very much appreciated this 20 minute clip of Dr. Zbigniew Brzezinski on Morning Joe as he discusses the concentration of wealth over the last few years. It is important for the public to understand that Republican policies enable the top few to get richer off the backs of the lower masses and unless we want the government to determine labor costs (we don’t), it is up to the public themselves to deflate the culture of extreme corporate wealth. Watch the video.
  • CLASSIC GO GET ‘EM! CLIP: Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero goes off on Fox over the suggestion that laborers have to shoulder the burden when companies lose competitiveness (many times due to executive decisions). Lots of talking over each other, which is annoying and Bernero obviously had an agenda when he went on the show, but still…it’s a good clip.
  • Repubs are already lining up their big guns against the upcoming attempts at health care reform. Some of the guns are not new and this one in particular, Betsey McCaughey, is having a clear problem locating the truth. Warning: it’s a Keith Olbermann clip, so if you don’t like him…watch the clip anyway.
  • IF YOU HAVE ITUNES: Dan Rather Reports aired an excellent program on the housing crisis with an even more excellent interview with TARP watchdog Elizabeth Warren. She is one of the few honest heroes of the Wall Street bailout. If you don’t have Itunes, you can get the transcript at the bottom of this page – I recommend the PDF version because the online version has formatting issues. Here are some highlights from the interview that are extremely worth a read:
    • RATHER
      Well, you’ve written– a great deal about family economics and the middle class. Are we in danger of– for all intents and purposes– losing the middle class? Or is that too much of a fear?
      WARREN
      No, I think that’s the real fear. So, here’s the– here’s what’s happened over a generation. Somebody out working 40 hours a week is making less than he was making 30 years ago. Household income has gone up a little. How? Because we put the second earner to work– if she could do it. But that has now flattened out. There’s no one else to put to work. We’ve put to work as many moms as we can possibly do. So, where we stand now is income has flattened out again. But core expenses; housing, health insurance, transportation, child care and taxes, because they’ve got these two salaries, have all gone up. And that’s left the basic family with less money than they used to have a generation ago. So, then we hit the skids of this recession. The bottom falls out of the housing market. They can’t tap home equity. These crazy mortgages for many of them are forcing their expenses up. They’re losing jobs. And that means we have not a few people, we have literally tens of millions of Americans, hard-working, play-by-the-rules, middle class people; people who got decent educations, people who got decent jobs, people who got married, moved out, bought houses, the backbone of what we are as America, those people are now hanging on by their fingernails.
    • RATHER
      If we lose the middle economic class do we have an America approaching anything what we’ve known in my lifetime and yours and our father and mother’s lifetime?
      WARREN
      No. It’s a different America. It becomes a two-class America. It may actually have a larger upper class. You know, maybe– maybe that moves to ten percent of the population who really do quite well. You know, the kids; you can send the kids to college with no debt and they graduate with no debt. They do fine. Nobody gets sick. You know, that’s the group that works. And then what we have is a big underclass. It’s folks who just live basically paycheck to paycheck. If– if you can hang on, if you don’t get a layoff or a cutback in hours
      RATHER
      Or you don’t get very ill?
      WARREN
      If– and one of the kids doesn’t get sick, if grandma doesn’t fall and break a hip, if you don’t get divorced or have a death in the family, you might be able to skirt through. But if anything goes wrong, you’re living one pink slip, one bad diagnosis away from complete financial collapse.
    • RATHER
      You did a special report on regulation. Take us back quickly over the last 25 years. What’s happened to regulation or supposed to have happened to regulation.
      WARREN
      So– so, here’s one way to look at it. In 1792 our young republic, George Washington is president, hits its first economic crisis. And credit markets freeze. Does this sound familiar?
      RATHER
      Yes, it does.
      WARREN
      And– it almost brings the country to its knees. And here’s what happens. About every 15 to 20 years we have another crisis. We call them panics. We have different names for them.
      RATHER
      Depression?
      WARREN
      Depression. But they happen about every 15 to 20 years for 140 years. The pattern is just unmistakable. Then we hit the Great Depression. And coming out of the Great Depression we put three new regulations in place; Glass Stiegel, which divides our community banks basically from the Wall Street investment banks, FDIC insurance, put money in the bank and know that it’s safe and some SEC regulations so you can invest on Wall Street and they can’t cheat you too directly. That’s what we put in place. For 50 years we have no bank failures, no major crises. It works. Now, there’s innovation. There’s change. It’s time to change regulations. It gets to be the early 1980s. And what do we do? Instead of saying new products, we need to change regulations to adapt, we take a different path. We say–
      RATHER
      We let banks to go in the insurance business and vice versa?
      WARREN
      Let’s deregulate. That’s exactly right. We begin to break down the old regulations. We say, “Who needs regulations? They’re so pokey. So old.” So, we go with this idea of let’s get rid of regulation and what happens? Late 1980s, savings and loan crisis should’ve been a warning. Late 1990s, remember long term capital management, hedge fund? Should’ve been a warning. But we let it go. Early 2000s, Enron, bad books, not telling the truth. Should’ve  been a warning. But we let it go. And where do we end up? In the biggest crisis since the– Great Depression. Markets are wonderful. They produce great wealth for us. But they are by their very nature something we call pro-cyclical. When they’re going up, they chase themselves up. Hey, wow, it’s doin’ great! Up they go. And when the go down, they chase themselves down. And they go lower than actual supply and demand would suggest. Now look, we can live in a world all ups and downs for the rest of our lives. We can say, “Who needs regulation? Let’s just ride that roller coaster wherever it goes.” But, you know, we have to remember when it goes down, it doesn’t just take down the people who gambled. It doesn’t just take down the people who invested on Wall Street. It takes down everybody who’s got a pension. It takes down folks who have jobs in construction industries and– and other industries that get hit by this. It takes down– in this case, it takes down homeowners, people who thought they were doing the right thing to protect themselves for the future. It takes down the prudent along with the gamblers and the wild ones.
      RATHER
      Which is where we are today?
      WARREN
      Which is exactly where we are today. So, we could say, “Hey, no more regulation. That’s fine.” But look what it’s brought us. We are not willing to let these big financial institutions fail. We’ve got this too big to fail notion. So we are going to shovel billions of dollars in their direction and still take the position we shouldn’t regulate them? I– this is a world that may be a lot of fun for
      the high flyers who get theirs and keep theirs. But it’s not a world that works very well for ordinary families.
16
Feb
09

Stimulus Debate Revealing Republicans To Be Out Of Touch Crackheads – But What’s New?

The ugly last few weeks of stimulus debate among our nation’s leadership has left one thing clear: Congress has essentially become a douchey, senior-citizen version of The Real World mixed with Laguna Beach. Seriously. We basically a geriatric high school with bitches galore  and those lame duck leaders have abdicated any sense of responsibility to the American citizen as they are solely focused on the next election – which is especially true in the case of the Republicans.

Anyone who has taken Psych 101 (me) has likely been watching with jaws on the floor the Right Wing Parade of crackhead after crackhead. Singular focus on electoral demographics has allowed them to form some insane force field of failed ideology divorcing almost the entire Republican leadership from reality. To repeat the words of John Judis in The New Republic, “Congressional Republicans either don’t know any economics or are willing to put the country at risk to advance their own party’s fortune.” I’d go with both.

In case you’ve been under a rock, here’s the deal, pickle. The country is hemorrhaging jobs – almost 5 million Americans are collecting unemployment benefits, which doesn’t include all the unemployed who are not collecting benefits, nor those who are underemployed because their hours have been cut. Temporary jobs – an indicator of economic health – have all but dried up. The wealth of the average American family is now less than it was in 2001. And the second wave of mortgage defaults is starting to hit the country, because option ARMS are beginning to hit their due dates for interest rate increases. AND, and – the country’s top intelligence officer says the global economic crisis poses a greater threat to U.S. stability than terrorism.

You got it? Good.

Now, what are the crackhead Republicans suggesting will fix this crisis? It they spend most of their whining about the lack bipartisanship (which is odd considering Bush only met with Dems 3 times during his administration and Limbaugh equates talking to Dems to talking to snakes…), hoping the president fails, attempting to obstruct any potential solution to the problem and creating fun, new, misleading terms like “generational theft.” Would you expect any different from a group of people who values the opinions of the likes of Newt Gingrich, Tom Delay, Joe the Plumber, and Rush Limbaugh? Right.

Somehow, you’d think right wing leaders smart enough to reach national office would be able to acknowledge the reality of the situation and choose to address these issues with realistic proposals instead of ideology proven to not only fail, but worsen the country’s economic troubles. You’d be wrong. Repub leaders have decided – as though they live in bizarro world – that if they oppose the stimulus and the stimulus fails, they can ride it all the way to victory in 2010. How wonderful of them to lift their collective, wrinkled middle finger to the lower 95 percent of America’s economic class.

And just to appear as though someone told them if you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the what? Problem!, they are attempting to present a few weak ass proposals of their own: corporate tax cuts, more tax cuts for the wealthy, and payroll tax cuts.

Let’s address these “ideas.” First of all, government spending stimulates the economy much faster than tax cuts. Remember how much tax cuts for the wealthy helped over the last 8 years? The wealth was hoarded at the top and did not trickle down. The top 400 wealthiest Americans doubled their wealth, the poverty class grew while the middle shrunk drastically and jobs dried up.

Next, let’s take a look at corporate taxes. Republicans love to wave their hands in the air, shouting about America’s record corporate tax cuts. As they well know, because of the myriad of loopholes in tax legislation, the majority of U.S. corporations do not pay federal taxes. Therefore, lessening the tax burden on businesses that don’t pay taxes anyway will have zippo improvements on the economy. Are you paying attention Hatch? McConnell? Cantor? Boehner? Or your heads too far up your ass to hear me?

And lastly, payroll taxes are a good idea – but not by themselves. As with the stimulus checks Bush sent out last year, Americans are saving or paying down debt with any extra buck that comes their way – not shopping. Without consumers spending, businesses cannot stay afloat, retain employees and no reduction in payroll taxes will reverse that trend.

Which leave job creation as the strongest ladder out of this quagmire. Yet, Republicans, cuddled in their failed ideology and refusing to acknowledge data, evidence and reason started harping on every little non-roads related portion of the stimulus bill. Condom distribution, for example, was one of their main target. Yet, condom makers, condom packagers, and companies who ship the condoms will be stimulated. I could answer in much the same way with every “earmark” the Republicans attacked with unhelpful rhetoric, like “porkulus.”

Paul Begala had a good idea in his address to South Carolina Gov. Sanford, who opposes the stimulus, “If Republican politicians are so deeply opposed to President Obama’s economic recovery plan, they should refuse to take the money. After all, if you think all that federal spending is damaging, there are easy ways to reduce it: Don’t take federal money.” We’ll see how many uneducated poor – or, as I like to call them, Limbaugh listeners – turn out to vote for Repubs in 2010 in the areas where they looked to corporate tax cuts to help them out of the economic rut.

Bush proved what a detriment it is to cloak decision-making in political ideology alone. Data, information, logic, evidence must be understood and solutions cannot simply stand on theory – especially after the data show that theory has already failed. It is a desperate shame Republican leadership only cares about election returns and refuses to learn the lessons of the past. It seems so elementary and yet they fail to grasp the most simplest of realities. I’m sure  Republicans willing to work with Democrats, like Crist, Snowe, Spector, Collins, and all the  mayors who are seeing the jobs dry up right before their eyes will probably do okay the next election go ’round.

But with each new report about massive layoffs – that are weekly now – most Republicans will find that the only thing they know how to do, obstruct, will begin to sour among those feeling the pinch. Which is everybody. The Right wingers thought they were getting a little traction by throwing mud in Obama’s eye – but reality is hard to overcome and the Republicans have no solutions to our national problems, no helpful manners, and are making no improvements. To say they are a party of the past is putting it kindly. And I’m hoping all their bitchy congress people fail out come the end of this term.

09
Feb
09

Obama on CEO Pay in 2006

A commenter on the HuffPo who must have been in hibernation the last few years wrote snidely when someone complained of CEO pay that no one cared about the exorbitant amount until the recent ridiculous spending in light of the taxpayer bailout.

Obviously, this commenter lives in an alternate reality. Or they go to one of those “prosperity gospel” churches who forget baby jesus didn’t like the rich and tell all their peeps that god wants them to drive Escalades and live in mini-manses, so they need to tithe regularly to get them.

I’ve long had a problem with CEO ever since. In 2005, I worked for the printing arm of an insurance company whose CEO made above 20 mill a year and had a private jet while the peeps who worked on the printing floor made around 7 bucks, received no sick leave and couldn’t afford the crippling fees for the company-offered health insurance for themselves or their children. Funny how a health insurance company couldn’t afford cheaper health insurance for their own employees – yet the CEO and the good ol’ white boys at the top were making out like bandits.

And remember the deserved hoopla over the $28 million paycheck Alan Mulally received after heading up Ford for only 4 months? Yeah. Stratospheric CEO pay had been a problem for quite a long white.

In fact, Obama wrote a few words regarding the subject in his last book The Audacity of Hope, which was released in 2006. In light of the new CEO pay restrictions, which – surprise, surprise, – some Big Business bitch Republicans have come out against, I thought it apropos to highlight Obama’s opinion on the issue before the economy took a nose-dive.

In 1980, the average CEO made fort-two times what an average hourly worker took home. By 2005, the ratio was 262 to 1. Conservative outlets like the Wall Street Journal editorial page try to justify outlandish salaries and stock options as necessary to attract top talent, and suggest that the economy actually performs better when America’s corporate leaders are fat and happy. But the explosion in CEO pay has had little to do with improved performance. In fact, some of the country’s most highly compensated CEOs over the past decade have presided over huge drops in earnings, losses in shareholder value, massive layoffs, and the underfunding of their workers’ pension funds.

What accounts for the change in CEO pay is not any market imperative. It’s cultural. At a time when average workers are experiencing little or no income growth, many of America’s CEOs have lost any sense of shame about grabbing whatever their pliant, handpicked corporate boards will allow. Americans understand the damage such an ethic of greed has on our collective lives; in a recent survey, they ranked corruption in government and business, and greed an materialism, as two of the three most important moral challenges facing the nation (“raising kids with the right values” ranked first). Conservatives may be right when they argue that the government should not try to determine executive pay packages. But conservatives should at least be willing to speak out against unseemly behavior in corporate boardroom with the same moral force, the same sense of outrage, that they direct against dirty rap lyrics.

Trickle-down wealth is a myth. The top economic class hoard the wealth, grow the poverty class and weaken the middle class – which weakens the economy. Our country needs to reevaulate whether we’re willing to allow the wealthy to take the rest of us for a ride. Obviously, I vote no.

And isn’t it nice to have a president a bit of common sense? Like a breath of fresh air.

05
Feb
09

Card Criticizes Obama Wardrobe

Last week, I saw that Andy Card, Bush’s chief of staff proffered a snide schoolyard comment about Obama not wearing a jacket in the Oval Office.

Obviously, Card should go to hell. Or at least go away. Maybe one of the biggest problems with his crowd was worrying about dress codes while failing to offer the American people what they really needed – competence.

You want to know how you give the office of president respect? You don’t run the country into the ground. You don’t go to war because of your daddy issues. You don’t out your own intelligence agents. You don’t ruin every executive department from the EPA to the Justice Dept. Etc., etc., etc. (I could write pages)

If Obama wants to wear a speedo in the Oval Office, I don’t give two shits as long as he’s exercising good judgment.

Oh good judgment – under that umbrella is…let me think…a member of the outgoing administration not criticizing the current administration on irrelevant issues.

UPDATE: hehe. The Huffpo, in all its smart assed perfection, put together a slide show of all the recent presidents in the Oval Office with their jackets off. Click here to view.

20
Jan
09

Watching the Obama Inauguration

It’s here! It’s today! I went to bed last night relishing the “last night of Bush.” We will not have to deal with any further atrocities from that man’s administration. Their reign is over.

Watching all the failed former presidential candidates (especially Gore), I wonder if they are all thinking, “This should’ve been mine.”

Damn, 41 is looking old!

If I had to sit outside during the inauguration in the cold, and remember I’m from Texas, I would get those thermal pads that heat up. And hand warmers.

Yesterday, a number of conservative Texans were grumbling to my husband about the size of the celebration for Obama. And perhaps the shindig is so large because he is the first African-American president. Would it have been so large had Jesse Jackson been elected president? Would it have been so large had Hillary been elected? It is it so large because it heralds the end of Bush? A combo of Obama/first African-American president/end of Bush? Yes, I think so. There could be no better time to celebrate.

Yay – no more Cheneys!

Wow, this thing’s really going to happen.

How are they going to get Cheney in the wheelchair down the stairs? He’ll have to be wheeled around the side? Fitting for such and out-of-touch man. haha, they did.

Some boos for McConnell, Boehner and Bush. They’re singing, “Hey, hey, hey, goodbye!” OMG! I guess I would, too. They deserve it. Though, it is bad form.

Boos for Cheney.

President Bush shaking hands and he doesn’t have that weird, uncomfortable, “I don’t want to be here” look – watch his last interview with Larry King if you want to see it.

All sorts of philosophical feelings of gladness are echoing in my head.

Obama looks cool, calm, ready.

Rep. John Lewis gives Obama a big hug. What he must be feeling…

Ugh, Diane Feinstein. I will not remember her compromise with Bush for the sake of her defense contractor husband. Californians – you should not, either. She played for play. Shameful.

Great, here comes Rick Warren. Not much clapping. Douchebag. I’m not praying with him. How is God loving to everyone he has made when he condemns kind people to Hell and murderers he invites into Heaven? Answer: Christianity is a myth. And it is waning. It’s a shame it’s given such a spotlight when our country needs reason and common sense and adult decision-making. “When we fail to give all the human beings on the earth the respect they deserve…” Could he be referring to his own treatment of gay people? Obama, this was mistake. I hope it stings. And I hope you remember it.

I wonder how many people across the world are watching this. I hope they understand that America and Americans are more compassionate and more humble than they assume. Politicians and celebrities are not reflections of us.

Biden’s oath of office. That is a big ole Bible. Wooohoooo!!!!!! I’m glad he was chosen. The Southern Louisiana in me likes that he can tell it like it is and politi-speak comes hard to him.

Robert Gibbs is sitting behind the quartet of Itzak Perlman, Yo-yo Ma, Anthony McGill and Gabriela Montero. Is that odd or is it just me?

Here come THE oath. Be proud of Hussein.

We have a new president!!!!

I won’t lie, I’m tearing up a little. A black president. It’s marvelous.

President Barak Obama.

His speech – as he lists all the problems facing the nation, I wonder if Bush feels each one is spotlight on his failure.

We chose hope over fear. Damn right! Remember that, followers of Karl Rove.

Begin the work of remaking America. I am down. Big time.

Eeeeewww, they just showed Ray Nagin the crowd. He’s a lump of worthlessness.

We reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Couldn’t have said it better. Couldn’t agree with it more.

The force of our example. The tempering qualities of humility and strength. What a wonderful thing to have a president who speaks words and messages I can support. It’s been far too long.

Yes, he mentioned non-believers. Think those words would have come from McCain? Hell no.

We will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist. Damn, he’s a good writer.

Speech is over. Bush is giving his golf clap.

I can’t wait for the De-nauguration Party tonight!!

All right, good job, America!

I checked all the international news sites and Obama’s inauguration is on the forefront of them all, except Moscow Times. Ha’aretz points out Obama’s message to Muslims and shows a picture of Clinton and Gore together. Interesting.

“Former President George W. Bush” Ahh, sounds so sweet. There he goes. Be gone. I should say Here he comes seeing as how I live an hours’ drive from his new home. The crowd is sing, “Hey,hey,hey, good bye” again. Right on.

How many times can I say I’m so glad It’s Obama? For a year now, he’s been my first choice – it was a year ago Bill Richardson dropped out. But, I’m so glad it’s Obama. Not McCain, not Giuliani, not Hillary. Obama.

haha. The crowd his chanting, “Yes, we did! Yes, we did!” Yes, we did.

Obama’s signing the cabinet nominations. I forgot he’s a lefty.

They just showed Chelsea Clinton speaking with John and Cindy McCain. That shouldn’t seem too odd to me, but it does.

Watching Bush at Andrews Air Force Base. These images make me so happy.

Okay, it’s done. We’re a go. I’d uncork some champagne if I didn’t have to drive today. A certain sobriety is appropriate at this moment, I think – at least until tonight when I’ll let loose with revelry. It’s important to remember what the people can do when the need for action is paramount.

Good judgment has returned to the American people.

The era of religious ideology dictating ruinous policy is over. Evangelicals, you can terrorize the rest of us no longer. Your leaders have brought this country to its needs. The rest of us will not allow you to destroy what we hold dear. Remember what we can do when you seek to dominate and control with your intolerant, unjust will.

The long, dark night is over.

Obama is president. The people have spoken. We must continue to do so and implore our president to listen.

I can breathe again.

I will not forget this day.

17
Jan
09

Bush Needs To Fight the Law and the Law Needs to Win

I hope a lot of things.

I hope Journey gets back together.

I hope my husband develops an unusual penchant for household chores.

I hope UT dominates March Madness.

However, I’m realistic about the likely outcome of all these lofty wishes.

One of the big hopes I have saved in my hidden inner chamber of possibility is that Obama is lying as he quells calls for him to focus any attention toward the prosecution of the Bush administration for any of the multitude of crimes committed over the last eight years.

Any Constitutional Law professor (a.k.a. Obama), any two-bit ambulance chaser, could spot the illegal maneuvering of Bush cronies in the areas of warrantless wiretapping, Dept. of Justice politicization, no-bid contracts in Iraq, and torture – to name a few. And I don’t know if it was illegal to shovel billions of dollars to contractors as our military and veterans struggle grossly underfunded, but it should be.

The Bush administration hired a bunch of smarty-pants followers of Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson and fall-in-line, kill-the-enemy NeoCons whose sole purpose was to lace together intricately fragile arguments claiming legality of their bold molestations of power.

It is clear in Bush’s repeated and insistent claims in his last few media appearances:

Bush’s Last Press Conference Jan. 12:

And then we start putting policy in place — legal policy in place to connect the dots.

To Brit Hume Jan. 12:

And so however I interpreted the Constitution, I kept in mind what the Constitution said, the legality of what my decisions were…

And I said, are these tools deemed to be legal. And so we got legal opinions before any decision was made…

And all I can tell the American people is we better have tools in place that are legal and that can help us protect the American people from an enemy that still exists…

Everything this administration did was — had a legal basis to it, otherwise we would not have done it.

To Larry King Jan. 13,

No. No. Everything we did was — you know, it had legal legal opinions behind it…

And I got legal opinions that said whatever we’re going to do is legal.

Doth he protest too much? Yes, I think he doth. If nothing else, his insistence makes him suspect. The last president I remember asserting incessantly that activities under his leadership were legal was Nixon. And we know how history judged him.

As I watch Obama tell Georgie-boy Stephenohcrapmynameislong,

“And obviously we’re going to be looking at past practices and I don’t believe that anybody is above the law. On the other hand I also have a belief that we need to look forward as opposed to looking backwards.”

I just hope he is keeping his rhetoric bland and calm so the little Bushies don’t run around as as the clock ticks away destroying every document (which is illegal) having to do with every questionable transgression. They’d have to burn the house down and those librarians at Congress would be muy picante, if you know what I mean.

Obama will have hundreds if not thousands of employees at his disposal. I think a few should be allotted the quiet task of investigating the slanted activities of the worst commander-in-chief this country has known. Lest the next commanders-in-chief take a que that they do not have to justify their activities to the American people and their Constitution. That would be wrong.

Will he give us a few lower-level prosecutions to try and satiate the public outcry? Undoubtedly, there were so many crimes committed, that shouldn’t be too difficult. But an administration that would out a CIA agent, make the EPA a mortally hypocritical organization, and encourage the SEC to unbuckle the country’s seat belt as its economy veered over a cliff, certainly has much to answer for. Behind bars. And not in white collar, conjugal visit prison. I’m picturing a prison where you really need to keep an eye on your cornhole.

I wouldn’t call my urges for Bush administration prosecutions blood lust. I simply want justice after an 8-year period where that word was practically meaningless inside the walls of our Executive branch. I don’t believe in Bush’s lord and savior, but if he exists, I can’t imagine he would be anything but gravely disappointed by one of his most public followers and the one least like him.

One of the biggest proofs that Christianity is hooey is that its rules dictate Cheney would go to Heaven while I go to Hell. Well, that ain’t bloody happening. But please, before Cheney and his boss head anywhere, let them sit in front of a judge. And then behind bars. Lest history repeat itself.

06
Jan
09

On The Blogging Road Again

I’m back, kids! My fingers must have been itching, because they readily retained the memorization of my WordPress password  – a good omen I suppose for my return to the ubiquitous blogosphere, my favorite cranny being the neighborhood of dark, naughty angry liberals. Yes, yes, I’ve been gone a while and most of those who know me personally and scanned my writings from time to time have asked, “When are you going to blog again??” Now.

For reals, yo – I was suffering from major blog fatigue. Last year’s election placed us in a historical battle to reclaim the good that The States once were. The stakes could not have been higher and we were literally at the brink of a national, knife-edged decision between a hopeless, abysmal rejection of progress and simple possibility. Every blog, every comment, every opinion and assertion felt not just like sharing my voice – but helping to wage an effort bigger than all of us to help put our country and the world right. Shut up, you cynics – you felt it, too!!

And we triumphed. We whooped some old white man, religioner, anti-intellectual ass! To me, it wasn’t sooooo much that we elected Obama (indeed there will be blogs a-plenty de moi criticizing, constructively, many of Obama’s decisions) – my savored elation had more to do with the rejection of McCain and his joke of a running mate, Palin. To have elected them would have wrought irreparable damage at home and abroad to the pursuit of an improved, tolerant and beneficial community most of us glass-half-fullers choose to foresee.

In those months and moments leading up to Obama taking Pennsylvania and claiming victory, I wrote blog after blog – read innumerable others, gorged on news sites of every persuasion and sought every uncaptured sprinkle of information in a quest to comfort my nervous inner prognosticator. Certainly, I was quite confident from 2007 the Democrats would take the election. The multiple stellar Democratic candidates had the edge on the best the Republicans had to offer – none of whom could satisfactorily unite the anti-intellectual evangelicals with the small government, fiscal conservatives.

But fear of the unknown resonated in my bones and it seemed the only way to quell my anxiety was to participate – to blog.

The blog, however, consumed me. No doubt this government major loves to produce political analysis. But I found myself bound to the blog in ways I had not imagined. Visitors to the site became like crack to me and I counstantly found myself refreshing my page to scan visitor numbers, what searched terms pointed visitors my direction and if any other bloggers linked to my site. The computer had become my pipe.

Everyday, I felt the need to blog. The call was constant and the obligation heavy – akin to laundry, if you will. If we want to change the world, we have to participate and this was my clarion call for the 2008 election. I am a creature of freedom, however, and the obligation to the blogoslavedriver made my enjoyment level wear thin. My ass was sore and my eyes stung from sitting in front of the computer for ungodly amounts of time. I looked at myself on Nov. 5 with jail pale from lack of sunlight. Oh – and finding out I had a hormone deficiency.

So, when the knockout punch was delivered Nov. 4 – the call to blog slackened and I turned to the freedom of days not being psycho, not checking every single one of my bookmarks, not commenting, not needing to find solace in reading blogs espousing views similar to my own, not having anything else to talk about but the election and painfully pretending to be interested in other topics of conversation when interacting with fans of McCain.

I understand I am not alone. Television news ratings are down, talk radio has lost listeners, blog readership has slackened. We all needed to take a collective sigh and wallow in the release of tension built by a two-year presidential election season and the possibility of Sarah “You Betcha” Palin being a heartbeat away from the 3 am phone call. We needed to lick the wounds inflicted by the hypocritical masses of religioners oppressing homosexuals and tarnishing the good name of our country.

While away, I have enjoyed my respite – full of Festivus poles, delicious holiday meals, ungodly amounts of alcohol consumption and a crazy-ass college bowl game series (wtf, Texas Tech and Alabama?!! At least my Longhorns squeezed out a victory against Ohio State. I almost had a MFing heart attack!! We seriously need a college football playoff system).

It’s time to get back on the horse. Riiiide the pony. We only have two weeks left of mistake-of-the-century Bush II – which is amazing and unbelievable and fanfuckingtastic. It’s going to be hard for Obama – he has a monumental task ahead of him and choices to make for which there are no right answers. He will make mistakes, already has actually, and we must respond by voicing our opinion. This is our country, too (remember that, gay-haters).

Bush and Cheney thought the presidency belonged to them and they were wrong and now leave their posts in shame. The presidency belongs to us and we must remind Obama of this as the bubble engulfs him and his position on the pedestal skews his perspective.

Needless to say, I’ve never been afraid to say what I think. Bottom line: I’m back, baby!

And now I’m going to log out so I don’t constantly check viewership numbers. What the hell was wrong with me??

10
Dec
08

Laughable Joe-The-Plumber Speaks

Reveling in his 15th second of fame, Joe-The-Plumber gave an interview to Glenn Beck to publicize the book he didn’t write in true American capitalism fashion. Can’t really blame the guy. Hell, if this guy wants to shout from the top of the rafters what a jackass he is, then who am I to wish him shushed? Especially when he provides such humorous fodder for my irony-appreciating mental appetite.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, everyone is talking about how Joe is throwing John McCain under the bus – though, none of us would know his name if it weren’t for ole McCain (hey, that rhymes!) – but that is to be expected. Of course the world of the Right would treat their former nominee as a leper – they once hailed him as the Republican antichrist before being forced by the voters to jump on his bandwagon. Joe, obviously a follower of Fox News and radio blowhards, justified his participation in McCain’s campaign by calling him the “lesser of two evils”. Ain’t it funny that he never said that during the campaign?

MESSAGE TO JOE

What really brought home the absurdity of Joe’s reality was his assertion that he likes to think he’s more educated than most when it comes to politics. Right… Joe thinks the U.S. invading Iraq is like someone coming to Jesus and being saved. Joe thinks that a vote for Obama is a vote for the death of Israel. And Joe thinks he’s more educated than most when it comes to politics. Whatevah! Douchebag.

The second thing he said illustrating his “education” is that Sarah Palin is the “real deal” and that “she’s not looking for power.” If Palin is the genuine article – an honest politician – why do she and her staff use personal emails for government business? Why did she appoint wretchedly unqualified friends and donors to her cabinet and government positions? And if she’s not looking for power, why did she lobby her ass off to get to VP nomination?

One tip for ya there, Joe: the quickest way to fix the toilet is to get your head out of it.

19
Nov
08

Leakers Feel Good About Leaking

Jonathan Alter of Newsweek is one of my faves and tonight, on Rachel Maddow, he told guest host Allison Stewart that leakers feel all fuzzy inside after reading their revealed secrets in publications (or hearing them on TV, I presume). I suppose always I thought of leakers as fearful they would be illuminated as the smelly Swiss cheese and tread lightly. It does make sense, however, that the “diva” and “rogue” Palin leakers felt some ejaculatory pleasure as their unassociated slams consumed the shallows of mainstream media.

Leakers are always all the rage – from Watergate’s Deepthroat in the 1970’s to today’s Obama transition team permeables. Leakers, however, are not homogeneous. Some are lying bastard lowlifes while others are courageous whistleblower demigods.

The public’s right to know and our cherished democratic transparency are protected by leaks – understandably, dictatorships have quite a different relationship with them. The Bush administration has run a notoriously vacuum-sealed presidency and look where that has gotten us: rendition, torture, massive tax breaks for banks, the Iraq War, warrent-less wiretapping, attacks on women’s reproductive rights, etc., etc. No leaks = no good. Silence is deadly. You get the picture.

The majority of leaks, however, are undoubtedly generated by ulterior motives, weakening their credibility at the start. Others are potentially mortally truthful. Unfortunately, the worst leak in recent history had our executive administration outing a CIA agent and endangering international intelligence networks carefully crafted by America’s best and brightest.

But other leaks are just palin – I mean plain fun:

With the tidal wave of anonymous comments from insiders knowledgeable about the goings-on inside the Palin half of the McCain campaign, I figured the truth was somewhere in between the VP candidate talking to Salter & Schmidt in naught but a towel/didn’t know Africa was a continent and the McCain camp (ahem, Nicole Wallace) mishandling her, dooming her performance from the word “you betcha.” Either way, I’m glad I won’t have to give her anymore serious thought and bulging forehead veins for a while.

The final verdict on leaks: you just never know. Grain of sand and all that. Even if they’re lies, I appreciate being on the receiving end of the majority of them – especially when they’re of the sort that makes Dick Cheney’s pacemaker work a little bit harder.

18
Nov
08

Lieberman Keeps His Chairmanship

Jerkass

Jerkass

What a fuckin’ fucker. I know, I know, the Dems need his vote and don’t want to cut their nose off to spite their face when they’re about to have an unprecedented power while our nation faces turbulent waters now and in the foreseeable future.

But he’s such a dick. It doesn’t bother me that he supported John McCain. Not a bit. What pissed my shit off is when he played politics with our troops lives by trying to introduce legislation in the Senate, along with Sen. Graham, saying that the surge was a success. It’s well documented now that the reduction in violence in Iraq had many causes, the surge being a minor one. Forcing an Obama yay or nay on that issue would have swayed voters, which is what Lieberman was hoping.

He also questioned Obama’s patriotism, trying to fear-monger a success for McCain out of the electorate.

“In my opinion, the choice could not be more clear: between one candidate, John McCain, who’s had experience, been tested in war and tried in peace, another candidate who has not,’’ Mr. Lieberman said. “Between one candidate, John McCain, who has always put the country first, worked across party lines to get things done, and one candidate who has not. Between one candidate who’s a talker, and the other candidate who’s the leader America needs as our next president.”

If Lieberman disagreed with Obama on the issues, he is obligated to say so and I support him voicing his honest opinions. But saying McCain puts country first and Obama does not was petty and partisan. I might add that Lieberman made these comments when he probably still felt he had a shot at the VP slot. He discovered, with the rest of us, that McCain does not put country first when he chose a running mate wholly unqualified to be president.

Lieberman undoubtedly mollified many of his senatorial colleagues when he expressed today that, during the heat of the campaign, he issued statement he wishes he had not.

To little, too late for me and how disappointing to watch the Dems bend over for a schmuck like Lieberman.

Connecticut, for the love of christ, vote Lieberman out in 2012. I know that’s a long time from now – and I once again have to express my extreme support for term limits – but get rid of this putz. Sure, we Texans send our fair share of knuckle-draggers over to D.C. as well, but I’m doing what I can to improve our representation. I beg of you do so as well.

Leibermanmustgo!

15
Nov
08

Review of Palin’s Week of Media Whore-ing

Holy jeez, guys, did ya catch Governor (gag) Palin all over airwaves this week? Didja? Well, I did and wanted to wtf-alaskatake a few minutes ta brag that lady up…I sure did there. Well, maybe not brag. Maybe just sorta take a lil’ looksee at what she had to offer this good ‘ol USofA- the real American TV watchers.

Perhaps you can tell my IQ has dipped a cool 30. Even my over-a-decade-long love affair with Mr. Hops and his friend, Roasted Barley, couldn’t dampen my intellect as much as listening to Mrs. Sarah. (In fact, Mr. Hops, you sweet thang, you’ve probably killed those wickedly weak brain cells, right? Right?)

Palin’s like the movie Poltergeist. I can just feel her sucking my smarts through the boob-tube with each, “I’m just prayin’ to God to show me the open door so I can plow right through it.” AAahhhh!!! Shut UP! I’m getting dumber as I listen to you and yet…I…Can’t…Stop!! It’s irresistible – listening to a person who is that unable to say anything coherent or substantive and yet has been elected GOVERNOR. What has the fucking world come to? I shudder to ask myself.

“As for that VP talk all the time, I’ll tell you, I still can’t answer that question until somebody answers for me what is it exactly that the VP does every day?” –Sarah Palin, interview with CNBC’s “Kudlow & Co”, July 2008

This past week, Palin has faced Greta, Matt Lauer, Wolf Blizter, Larry King. She has held a press conference and given a speech at the Republican Governor’s Association summit in Florida. Chatty Cathy spoke for hours and answered every question, or attempted to, gave prepared statements and among all that verbosity said absolutely nothing.

“I have not, and I think if you go back in history and if you ask that question of many vice presidents, they may have the same answer that I just gave you.” –Sarah Palin, after being asked if she had never met a foreign head of state, despite the fact that every vice president in the last 32 years had met a foreign head of state prior to taking office, ABC News interview, Sept. 11, 2008

It was laughable when Wolf asked her if she thought the Big Three should get a chunk of the bailout. I dunno… Then he asked her if she had a new ideas regarding the fate of the Republican Party. I’ll have to get backtooya on that one there. Let me get this straight…She’s supposed to be the defacto leader of the Repubs and has not one new strategy – not one?! Even Pawlenty said the Repubs need an energy policy beyond “drill, baby, drill” and need to be more inclusive. What a fucking genius. They’re in good hands.

She said a couple times she grew irritated when Katie Couric asked her what she read and she thought The same thing you do in the lower 48, duh! She acted as though the question was a slam against Alaska. Dumbass! During Obama’s first press conference as president-elect, a reporter asked him what he was reading and he responded he was rereading Lincoln’s speeches. Maybe it’s just me, but if you want to get within’ fifty miles of the White House, you should be able to offer the titles of books or newspapers or websites or a freaking Sunday morning cartoon that you have read recently.

“You’ll be there to defend the innocents from the enemies who planned and carried out and rejoiced in the deaths of thousands of Americans.” –Sarah Palin, linking the Iraq war the 9/11 attacks while addressing U.S. soldiers shipping off to Iraq, Fairbanks, Alaska, Sept. 11, 2008

Palin even indicated that her irritation with Katie Couric was the likely reason her performance during the interview was judged so poorly and that she didn’t want to simply regurgitate memorized lines provided to her by the McCain handlers. Now, this struck me as a little fibby. Mostly due the fact that she repeated the same answers to every interviewer she faced this past week. She spewed that “open door” lunacy quite a few times. After being asked if she would appoint herself senator should Ted Stevens step down if elected, she asserted again and again that she was not a dictator and she had a contract with the people of Alaska as their governor. And when the attention inevitably turned to the elephant in the room – 2012, her mantra was that she would do what was in the best interest of her kids, her state and her nation. She had those lines pretty memorized…

“Absolutely. Yup, yup.” –Sarah Palin after being asked by People magazine if she was ready to be a heartbeat away from the presidency

It was also friggin’ nuts when she claimed to eschew partisanship when she put together her cabinet of “the best of the best.” Hmm, again, this sounds like less than the whole truth. Or completely unrelated to the truth in every way. According to the L.A. Times, nearly 1 in 4 of her appointees were donors to her campaign. All five of her appointees to the Natural Gas Development Authority were donors. Her appointment to the Board of Agriculture and Conservation was a school friend, donor and real estate agent. Hmmm. The Board of Public Accountancy and the Local Boundary Commission were – again – all donors. I’m sensing a theme here. The state’s agriculture division is headed by a schoolmate, and former real estate agent, who indicated her love as cows as one of her qualifications. The attorney general is a small-time Wasilla lawyer who has little management experience. Now, where I’m from, that’s called “cronyism” and the L.A. Times says that the inexperience of her cabinet is unprecedented. Best of the best, my ass.

“I’m very, very pleased to be cleared of any legal wrongdoing … any hint of any kind of unethical activity there. Very pleased to be cleared of any of that.” –Sarah Palin, after an Alaska legislative report found she had broken the state’s ethics law and abused her power in the Troopergate scandal, conference call with Alaska reporters, Oct. 12, 2008

She did feel the need to attack the media and I thought it was really cute when she said had been a journalist and wanted to help them once again achieve credibility. And as a governor who uses personal email for state business in order to sidestep freedom of information laws, she doesn’t really seem to have much credibility herself. Also, attacking the media has never been a successful strategy. Just ask the Clintons and McCain after his media “base” turned on him! Naughty media. She insisted they never wanted to correct their mistakes and cited their main attack as claiming Trig was Bristol’s baby. The MSM never made that claim – but reported that blogs were erroneously made that statement. Furthermore, even Todd said there was very little TV time while they were campaigning. Perhaps she should have watched a bit more before throwing around false accusations. Just an idea.

palins-futureShe also claimed bloggers were in their pajamas in their parents’ basements. Now, I struggle not to take this personally and probably would if she didn’t show up to the RGA summit with bedhead and has little comprehension of sentence structure. And Rush Limbaugh is basically a blogger who doesn’t know how to type, has delusions of grandeur and is a drug addict – yet Palin loves his chubby cheeks, doesn’t she? Palin would do well to remember that the Obama campaign’s online efforts help deliver him the presidency. And who’s online? Oh yeah! Bloggers. And we don’t have basements in Texas. Biotch.

“I’ll try to find you some and I’ll bring them to you.” –Sarah Palin, asked by Katie Couric to cite specific examples of how John McCain has pushed for more regulation in his 26 years in the Senate, CBS News interview, Sept. 24, 2008

I know she’s trying to rehabilitate her image after it took a pounding during the campaign. How funny that the Republican Govs had a get-together this week, leaving Palin little time for strategy-planning and boning up on policy. Her weakness is palpably blood in the water and all the other power-hungry govs would probably rather scratch her face off then watch her run away with their precious little base. The evolution of the Republican party will be unendingly interesting to watch in the next few years. And, regarding Palin, I just have one thing to say:

Baby jesus, please hear me just this once. I don’t know what doors you been openin’ for lil’ Miss Palin, but for the love of all that is good and holy in this world, shut them!! Shut them now before she sucks us all into her vortex of white-trashy ineptitude. Please!

*Quotations from politicalhumor.about.com

13
Nov
08

Corporate Lobbyists Have Their Sticky Hands All Over This Bailout Mess

corporate-lobbying-bombLike bees to honey, the government bailout has triggered an explosion in corporate lobbying on behalf of banks, savings and loan institutions and insurers. Only these bees are very rich and very greedy. According to CQ Politics Nov. 1, K Street reported nearly $830 million in expenditures and revenue for July, August and September of this year – with no end in sight after registering 500 new clients just this October.

Corporate lobbyists are about as reputable as used-car salesman. And for good reason. Imagine, as a politician, your source of information on an industry, company, town or organization is a person paid directly by that entity to encourage legislation if favor of said entity. It is the height of conflict of interest. Would you trust a prostitute if he/she told you they were the best lay on the strip? No! But if you’re a john, you’ll probably do them anyway.

And this is the problem we have with big biz lobbyists. Their information and opinion are skewed, biased and unreliable. The lobbyists who represent the wealthier entities are inevitably more successful, securing de-regulatory measures, earmarks, etc. for their clients. And money continues to power the Washington merry-go-round, as we’re seeing with Paulson’s bailout.

During the lame duck Congressional session in 2000, our public-serving representatives legalized unregulatedmoney-equals-power over-the-counter derivative markets (ahem, gambling). Now, would our legislators come up with this idea on their own, under the assumption that this loosening of the stock market rule book would benefit society as a whole? NO! Slimy little wankers in the form of lobbyists undoubtedly sent oodles of cash to specific designations to earn those Yeas. The lobbyists likely wrote the legislation itself.

The U.S. bailout package, unlike the U.K. bailout, includes unprecedented loans to the banking industry without stipulating the banks in turn must issue loans to help lubricate financial markets. The bailout loans come with no restrictions that the government money cannot be used to pay stockholder dividends, nor for the payment of executive bonuses. It would seem elementary to obligate banks to use the bailout appropriately and in the best interest of the economy. And yet our Treasury Department and Congress have been the Daddy Warbucks to Little Orphan Annie – as you wish, my dear. How does such an asinine lack of oversight, transparency and intelligent governance fall by the wayside during this worldwide torrential economic plunge?

Lobbyists. Under the orders of the corporate pimps. Conducting trades of cash and influence in the backs of the American public. The examples of manipulations, misdeeds, proliferation of misinformation and the results of such actions are endless:

  • Reuters: “The Government Accountability Office said 72 percent of all foreign corporations and about 57 percent of U.S. companies doing business in the United States paid no federal income taxes for at least one year between 1998 and 2005.”
  • AP: “Some of the nation’s biggest banks are in for a windfall — on top of the $700 billion government bailout — thanks to a new tax policy quietly issued by the Treasury Department. The notice gives big tax breaks to companies that acquire struggling banks hit hard by the mortgage crisis. In some cases, the tax breaks could exceed the cost of acquiring the banks, according to analyses by private tax experts. The change could cost the Treasury as much as $140 billion by enabling firms that acquire struggling banks to use more losses incurred by those banks to offset their own taxable profits.”
  • Bloomberg: The Federal Reserve refuses to identitify the recipients of $2 trillion in taxpayer loans, despite promising transparency in return for approval of the bailout plan.
  • ABC: Pelosi (and Obama) is calling for more of the $700 bailout to be given to the Big 3 American automakers, who received $25 billion in September, with environmentally friendly strings attached.

Corporations are convincing our federal representation, through Olympic lobbying efforts, to collude in efforts that secretly and overtly reward poor financial judgment, strengthening corporate power and influence and coporate-lobbyist-stickman1proving that our government is no longer beholden to the voters, but to big business.

Obama is taking baby steps to quell the loud voices of corporate lobbyists. Transition team leader John Podesta introduced new lobbying restrictions for the transition process. CNN – “Those who leave the transition team will be barred for a year from lobbying the incoming administration on matters related to their transition jobs, and current lobbyists who join the team are barred for 12 months from working in policy fields related to their lobbying work.”

Hopefully, an Obama presidency and Democrat-led Congress will find time in their busy schedules to legally amputate the greedy fingers of corporations – their lobbyists. I’m not holding my breath.

And while lobbying is protected by the first amendment, the flood of cash through these unethical vessels into D.C. must end. These people make and distribute far too much money, assualting our democracy with each greedy cent. They divert power from the people to self-interested corporations, delivering an economic crisis that could easily define the next age.

10
Nov
08

Grossest Political Graphic

newsweek-american-brainI hope Michael Hirsh had nothing to do with the graphic produced for his “Brains Are Back!” piece in Newsweek. Visually, brains are just gross and this metaphore for American intelligence is no exception. Basically, eewwww.

The article was great, however, and here a few excerpts:

What Obama’s election means, above all, is that brains are back. Sense and pragmatism and the idea of considering-all-the-options are back. Studying one’s enemies and thinking through strategic problems are back. Cultural understanding is back. Yahooism and jingoism and junk science about global warming and shabby legal reasoning about torture are out. The national culture of flag-pin shallowness that guided our foreign policy is gone with the wind.

But, frankly, these are all risks worth taking after nearly eight years of a president who could barely form a coherent sentence, much less a strategic thought. We can finally go back to respecting logic and reason and studiousness under a president who doesn’t seem to care much about what is “left,” “right” or ideologically pure. Or what he thinks God is saying to him. A guy who keeps religion in its proper place—in the pew.

I couldn’t have said it better.

07
Nov
08

Behind the Scenes with Obamas on Election Night

Picture gallery on The Guardian.

05
Nov
08

OBAMA WINS, BITCHES!!!

One word: hungover. I drank way too much champagne last night – way, way too much. The light from the screen is hurting my eyes… oowww. I might have to crack a beer open – hair of the dog, you know. In fact, what the hell?! Obama is President-Elect. I AM going to pop open a beer. Hang on.

Aahhhh, that’s better! And, no, I DO NOT have a drinking problem!

Obama is going to be freaking president!!

I would say I’m relieved now that the election is over, but I never really doubted he would win. Ever. Not because I wanted him to win, but because it has been his logistically for quite a while. McCain never presented a real challenge – even with the Palin bump. Obama didn’t just win because the economy tanked. He won because the pendulum has swung away from the rotted, soiled, simpleton remains of the Republican Party. He won because his campaign was damn-near perfect. Obama won because he was the right man at the right time. It was an inevitability.

Last night was electric – after Pennsylvania and then Ohio were lit blue, I said, “It’s over!” But the nervous many tried to shout down my certainty – don’t say that, baby jesus might jinx us! But, I’d had too much wine and my boisterous assertions could not be contained. Not even by baby jesus! Though the wind might blow and the tension be palpable, I cannot be stopped from shouting atop my sofa – Obama will win, goddammit, hallelujah, Obama will win!!!

And then, at 10:30 Central, the networks called if for our Main Man and my house was literally ringing with cries of inebriated jubilation – the time had come to pop the bubbly! Hell yeah, motherfuckers!!! Repubs – you can take your old, white, wrinkly, close-minded ass home. Stamp “Return to Sender” on the forehead of your retarded Alaskan mascot. Next stop: progress. Couldn’t steal this one, right-wing douches! This one belongs to us – I mean That One. And he more than doubled McCain’s electoral count. That’s what I call a bonafide, grade A, first class ASS-WHOOPIN’!

As you can tell, I’m still on my post-election high. No telling when I’m coming down, though seeing Bush’s face live on television this morning came as close to a cold shower as it gets for a person of my persuasion. Oh, what’s my persuasion? Winner. Yep, that’s what I am. A winner. A big, awesome winner. There’s a lot of us this morning and, if you’ve read most of this blog, you’re probably a big, big winner, too.

Asides:

What was surprising, however, was how close Texas was. The Obama numbers were much higher than I expected and with the racists and close-mindeds getting old and dying off, I have a real, solid hope that Texas could turn blue in the near future. No, that’s not the beer talking.

And a big, major, huge SHAME ON YOU to the voters in Florida and California who voted to pass the gay marriage ban. You prejudice, discriminatory, close-minded dickwads are all going to hell. And good riddance. I hope your genitals fall off and you are plagued with herpes of the esophogus. And I mean that with all the Christian love a non-Christian can give.

And dammit if Michelle Bachmann didn’t win. Now we have to put up with that crazy whore putting her ugly mug in front of all the cameras she can find for a couple more years. I’m warning all television outlets now that if I see her being interviewed, I will turn the channel. However far I have to reach for the remote – even if I have to get out of my chair – I will tune into alternative programming. And you can take that to the bank, yo.

I’m sad, relieved, happy, disappointed it’s over. What will I blog about next?

03
Nov
08

I’m Voting For Barack Obama

Surprise of the century, I know!

While I had been considering Nader in order to support the multi-party system, he is a unfortunately a write-in candidate here in Texas – forcing me to question the immediate efficacy of such a vote. All candidates on my sample ballot are Repub, Dem or Libertarian, so it seems the major parties here in Texas are succeeding in keeping our political choices as narrow as possible. A shame for democracy, really.

Nader’s write-in status, however, did not itself determine my vote.

The widespread efforts of Republican voter suppression did. Republicans across the nation try to have hundreds of thousands of names purged from voter lists, fight efforts to increase early voting availability (salute to Charlie Crist, middle finger to Georgia’s secretary of state) and fund disinformation campaigns to confuse and intimidate potential voters. Our saving grace this year is that the secretaries of state in Iowa, Minnesota, New Mexico, Nevada and (thank christ) Ohio are Democrat. Sorry, bitches, no Katherine Harris replay here.

Almost all voter suppression efforts originate in the nasty little minds of Republicans, who have shown election after election that they hold winning of higher import than democracy. How ridiculously wretched that Bush claims is presidential clarion call is to spread democracy when he has helped his party be an agent of democracy poisoning.

The Right likes to flail their hands in the air screaming Voter Fraud. Yet, even if quite a few false registrations were turned in, it would be an unlikely realization that those registrations would result in actual votes. Republicans – who know this – would prefer to dump thousands upon thousands of legitimate voters in order to prevent a few false votes from occurring. It is a charade. A pathetic, dishonorable, horrific charade given the historic fight to provide us with such a freedom.

I find it harder and harder to relate to the Republican Party as a whole and my respect for the organization has plummeted since my days as a freshman member of the College Republicans.

So, I’m voting for Obama – for all the regular reasons: I agree with many of his policies, I believe he would be infinitely better as president than McCain, I would rather cut off my little toe than see Sarah Palin so close to the presidency, I want to help protect civil liberties and have the utmost concern for the next three Supreme Court appointees, I believe Obama to be an extremely thoughtful man, my consideration as a voter is not just for myself, but my fellow Americans and fellow citizens of the world, Obama would be of much greater benefit to the environment, etc., etc., etc.

But, I’m also voting for Obama as a big FUCK YOU to the Republican Party. As long as they are party who practices widespread voter suppression, as long as they are a party who views fair democracy as an obstacle, as long as they are the party who would rather steal elections than win them outright and smile at the freedom those before us have earned, I will vote against them. I will raise my voice against them. I will fight them every election.

Unfortunately, Texas will send their electoral delegates to support McCain. I’m sure all of you heard that a fourth of Texans still believe Obama is a Muslim – so that gives you an idea of the political education of our fine citizenry. As of this late date, the GOP is running Jeremiah Write ads every few minutes calling Obama too radical and too risky. I’m glad they’ve decided to waste their money in this media market since they’re basically (sadly) preaching to the choir here.

So, I will vote Obama and hope he can fulfill much of what he has promised. And I’m not simply talking universal health care. I’m talking competence and consideration and even-handedness. It will be so difficult for him to achieve many of his lofty ambitions in the face of the massive destruction left by Bush and Cheney militarily, economically, in the area of checks and balances and widespread corruption at the Executive Branch.

I believe Obama will take it home tomorrow night and the majority of us can collectively breathe a sigh of relief and lift a finally-steady hand holding a glass of champagne in celebration. But I’m looking past tomorrow and at the next four years and I’m cautiously optimistic. While the Republican death squads will emerge from their mire within seconds of an Obama victory – this time the majority of the country and overwhelming numbers of global neighbors are supporting him, watching him and simply hoping.

Here we go. Just breathe. And vote. And then breathe. It’s time.




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