Posts Tagged ‘south carolina


First Golden Parachute of the Bailout

At least, I think it’s the first. Pro Publica reports South Financial Group, a bank in South Carolina, has been approved to receive $347 million as part of the federal government bailout of the financial sector. Founder and double-decade CEO Mack Whittle retired two months early (coincidence?) and walked away with an $18 million severance package. His retirement comes before restrictions on golden parachutes will affect SFG’s receipt of taxpayer money.

Certainly $18 million pales in comparison to the parachutes rampant in big business’ golden showers. Still, Whittle oversaw the poor decision-making that has brought the SFG to the brink of failure, dependent on government money to stay afloat. Why he’s entitled to a $133,920 auto allowance and $75,000 for financial planning, only Beelzebub knows.

The delicious silver lining? Apparently, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford (R) is calling for an investigation into Whittle’s early retirement, accusing him of “gaming the system.” According to Talking Points Memo, Whittle had grown dissatisfied with Sanford’s treatment of the business sector and backed another cat’s effort to unseat the governor in 2006.

These corporate executives who are looking for the huge pay-day as unemployment numbers grow into the millions better watch out. Their greed and mismanagement has brought the world to a global meltdown – to radiate a “let them eat cake” attitude will surely earn them an “off with their heads” response. The electorate is growing tired of the hoarding of wealth at the top of the economic totem pole and surely our representatives are on the receiving end of their rightful earful.

Whittle, like the rest of us, should have saved for retirement and faded into the sunset full of self-doubt over his leadership spanning the housing boom. There’s enough blame to go around and he should grow up, exit Neverland stage left and eat his fair share of the shit pie he helped cook.


Hall of Shame: S.C. Approves “I Believe” License Plates

I make no bones about my disappointment with the rise in religious fundamentalism in this country and how detrimental such developments are, mostly having to do with failed abortion-only policies, the rise of anti-intellectualism, the accepting of intolerant and unconstitutional bans on gay marriage, and the promotion of power of men like George W. Bush, Pat Robertson, John Hagee and the late Jerry Falwell. Though, the rise in fundamentalism likely portends its downfall as progress is an unstoppable force, a law in South Carolina took effect yesterday that expresses the deep inability for many Americans to reconcile the brainwashing of their childhood with the reason and common sense their adulthoods.

South Carolina now offers “I Believe” license plates at $4 to $6.

i believe license plates

Such a license plate is an example of a governmental endorsement of a religion and a shameful illustration of the domination of unfounded mythology on our society.

Ask yourself whether the South Carolina state legislature would support a license plate expressing support of Islam, Judaism, Atheism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Scientology or Wicca. Right.

The ACLU and American Jewish Congress are considering action over this huge legal disappointment in South Carolina (which, by the way, failed in Florida in April). Here at politicalmpressions (which is just me), we wholemindedly support their efforts to have this state-sponsored endorsement of Christianity revoked.

Had this happened in Texas, I myself would raise my voice to its greatest heights to help preserve the separation of church and state.

Silver Lining: Marcus Aurelius points out in his comment on Think Progress, “It’s nice to know who the morons are when you’re out driving.”

Here We Go: June 19, Americans United for Separation of Church and Stateasks a judge to stop the state from making the plates and rule that the law allowing them violates the First Amendment.” For more, read here. Aaaahh, I love the smell of progress and common sense.


Obama Takes S.C.

We knew it was going to happen. Certainly it isn’t the political devastation for HillHill all the commentators are claiming, including my beloved Carl Bernstein, who termed the loss, (paraphrasing) “The worst night of her political life.” Helloooooo, it was South Carolina and while everyone agrees she was going to lose, they’re simply saying no one expected such a huge spanking. Were people really thinking African-American women were going to side with Hillary over Obama? Hell no, as Amy-the-young-Republican commentator who is on CNN, MSNBC and Bill Maher said recently, black women identify themselves first as African-American and women second. They were going with Obama no matter what, despite Clinton’s fairly stellar history in the area of Civil Rights. It seemed obvious to me. Maybe it wasn’t. Maybe people who have to say whether it was an ass-wuppin or not are too close to the action to see the forest for the trees.

AND, I don’t think it will make a huge difference going forward. Hillary is polling ahead of Obama in all the states voting on superduper Tuesday except his home state of Illinois. Perhaps the governor and both senators of Massachusetts giving Obama their endorsement will help, as will Caroline Kennedy’s NYTimes editorial. But California and New York will almost certainly go Hillary’s direction.

Either way, it’s great Obama won S.C. – the longer we can keep the race for The Whitehouse alive without crowning a king or queen is better for the country. It keeps us talking about policies, characters, experience and hopes. The discussion stays alive and, in many ways, the discussion is the most important thing. Maybe this is one of those the journey is the destination-type things. We’re idealistic now, but the next president will inherit a mess and will, no doubt, disappoint in one way or another. We need to appreciate our ability to be idealistic while we can.

Plus, I haven’t chosen between Hillary or Barack yet.

Scarlet Letter of Atheism


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