Thursday, October 30, 2008

Hey Mike Greenberg, Piss Off!


So I'm driving into work and flip into 'Mike and Mike in the Morning' for a few minutes and hear Greenie say something like" just handed me this---I find it interesting, they didn't sing the national anthem last night before the baseball game..."

So far no harm done, but he continues with something like.....

"because of Barack Obama's commercial they abbreviated the pre-game and so didn't sing the national anthem..."

Really? Good job Greenie. Lay that at the feet of Unamerican Obama. I guess if they really wanted to sing the anthem the extra 50-60 seconds would have killed the whole affair, huh?

Or maybe it could have been because it was a continuation of a game that was halted mid-way, albeit two days ago? What's the rule on anthems? Is it at the beginning of a game? Or at the beginning of every new day's play? So if a game is stopped for rain at 11 pm and resumes 75 minutes later at 12.15 am, do they sing the anthem again? Any of this possible?

Or do you get an extra dog treat for kissing some major Disney executive ass by throwing Obama under the bus? Like you probably did earlier this summer when you guys couldn't stop kissing Dubi-ya's ass about the fiddling while rome bur....errr..... Tee-ball game at the White House..... that you were invited to?

I guess I've been pissed off at Mike and Mike for a while now---maybe if I listened all day, every day, I'd find out that I was mistaken---maybe I just catch them for the wrong 10 mins on the wrong couple of days every week---but in the glimpses that I get of them each week, they have begun to suck and pander worse and worse. Greenie seems exceptionally annoying, with an undercurrent of ever-growing pomposity (made only more annoying by his fake self-effacing shit).

It used to be a good, funny, entertaining show. It was a brilliant concept, you know. A dumb-jock act and a nerd-geek act! A truly brilliant concept when it was first done decades ago as the "Odd Couple". Heck, decades ago? It was probably done millenia ago! If we spelunked hard enough we'd probably find cave drawings advertising "Burp-farter and Wheel-inventor in the Morning!".

But the Odd Couple formula gets revived successfully every generation. And every good iteration of the Odd Couple is funny. For a while.

I'm thinking that that while has now elapsed for Mike and Mike.


More Republican Socialism


The $700 billion bailout was supposed to unfreeze the credit markets. The idea, in part, was that the Govt would give banks large amounts of money so that the banks would once again start lending money to those who need it.

Well, first we learned that Wall Street's top banks were going to use about $70 billion of that money for employee compensation (a substantial amount reportedly for BONUSES).

Now we learn that "U.S. banks getting more than $163 billion from the Treasury Department for new lending are on pace to pay more than half of that sum to their shareholders, with government permission, over the next three years".

Gee, handouts are A-OK with the "fiscally conservative" Republicans as long as it is to their thieving buddies.

But just in case I am getting this thing totally wrong, I looked up for some definitions.

Bonus: "Something given or paid over and above what is due".

Dividend (in the context of shareholders): "A sum of money paid to shareholders of a corporation out of earnings". (emphasis mine)

Hmm. Neither of those words imply any guarantees. As I understand it, if performance is poor, or if the company is having bad times with regard to earnings, one is guaranteed neither a bonus nor a dividend.

Where does the concept if guaranteed benefits come from?

Entitlement: "The right to guaranteed benefits under a government program, as Social Security or unemployment compensation".

Then again, I keep forgetting that all these definitions, these words of a language that I am so mentally shackled to, are all now OldSpeak.

I keep forgetting that for years now we have been using Newspeak. Silly me.


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A viewpoint from overseas

An excellent article by George Monbiot in the Guardian titled "How these gibbering numbskulls came to dominate Washington" (h/t Onegoodmove)


"How was it allowed to happen? How did politics in the US come to be dominated by people who make a virtue out of ignorance?....

....It wasn't always like this. The founding fathers of the republic - Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton and others - were among the greatest thinkers of their age. They felt no need to make a secret of it. How did the project they launched degenerate into George W Bush and Sarah Palin?"

Read the rest here. It is well worth the time.


Saturday, October 25, 2008

Palin on basic research

This was part of the pork-barrel post yesterday, but I figured it merits a place of its own. Clothing and makeup costs are one thing, the demonstration of stunning ignorance while making scientific policy-related remarks is another altogether.

Gee, this is a shock. Catchphrase Barbie is freaking clueless.....

Whether she can relate to the average person or not, it is clear that Sarah Palin can relate to joe-sixpack and jill stepford in the area of ignorance. Check out this piece on Think Progress where she is caught saying that fruit-fly research has nothing to do with the public good. This is the inevitable result of the republican war on science---that a candidate on the GOP ticket has no fucking idea what a colossal contribution fruit fly research has made to our understanding of various aspects of human biology, development, aging, and disease. I'll go a step further and wager that she has no clue about the value and indispensable nature of basic research itself in the context of the 'public good'. (Of course, an appreciation the importance of basic research in the abstract would be wayyyyy too much to expect from a fundie like her).

I thought I was upset on reading that--- till I read this post by Mike the Mad Biologist, which cites a poll showing that 28% of Americans did not know that the earth revolves around the sun!

I'll just go and fucking cry for a while now.


Friday, October 24, 2008

Pork-barrel spending? Or lipstick on a pig?


If you thought Sarah Palin's $150K clothing tab (I'd just posted on that a couple of days ago) was bad, check this out!

Palin's makeup stylist was the highest paid individual in the McCain campaign for the first half of October!! She was paid $22,800 for the first two weeks of October alone. And it gets better---Palin also appears to have a travelling personal hair-stylist who has been paid $10,000 for the first half of October.

Palin is on track to spend $65,600 on makeup and hair styling this month.
She's a real person you know! Fersure! You betcha! She can relate to the average person you know!

Apart from exposing GOPers' hypocrisy, all this spending on painting Palin amuses me for other reasons too---all this is going on as McCain is running short of money to runs ads for his campaign!
This is a good example of the current GOP values and priorities and it shows what the GOP is today---superficial, madeup, and rotten to the core.


Read d r i f t g l a s s

d r i f t g l a s s reprises a classic post about Little Red State Fundy.

Do take the time to read it.

Actually just read d r i f t g l a s s regularly. That is all.


Thursday, October 23, 2008

Alan Greenspan

either thinks we are all exceedingly stupid or just revealed how fucking stupid he and his colleagues were.

From his testimony to the House Oversight Committee (taken from this TPM report):

Greenspan said he had made a "mistake" in believing that banks in operating in their self-interest would be sufficient to protect their shareholders and the equity in their institutions.


Greenspan said in his testimony to the committee that he and others who believed lending institutions would do a good job of protecting their shareholders are in a "state of shocked disbelief."

Really? Hey Alan, you and your advocates for deregulation put the fox in charge of the hen-house and you're shocked that the fucking chickens are gone? You want me to buy that?

What in the unmitigated, soulless, orgy of greed on Wall St. over the past couple of decades led you to believe that these assholes were trustworthy? More importantly, where was the risk to the self-interest on the part of the banks? Anyone with half a fucking brain knew that they were 'too big to fail' and that if anything happened the taxpayer would be left holding the bailout bag!!

Since you are "shocked, shocked, I tell ya" at the behavior of these bank execs, let me educate you on some more recent events. Remember that $700 billion dollar bailout? You'll be happy to read this report from the Guardian which starts with

"Financial workers at Wall Street's top banks are to receive pay deals worth more than $70bn (£40bn), a substantial proportion of which is expected to be paid in discretionary bonuses, for their work so far this year - despite plunging the global financial system into its worst crisis since the 1929 stock market crash, the Guardian has learned."

See, even after causing this catastrophe, the fucking pigs want their bonuses! You thought these assholes would act ethically? You want me to believe that? Like I said at the outset, either you're totally stupid and delusional, or you think that we are to buy that bullshit.

Side Note:

Congress was protecting the interest of the taxpayer, right? There was going to be more oversight and more transparency, right? You'd actually get some serious accounting for the $700 billion, right? Remember Nancy "Impeachment is off the table" Pelosi grandstanding "We have sent a strong message to Wall St---The party is over!!" statement? Well, take a look at this report about the bailout related contract with the Bank of New York Mellon Corp.
And enjoy all the blacked-out parts about who will be paid how much and why! (h/t/Corrente)

If you're not angry, you're not paying attention.


AuH2Os for Obama


They didn't come much more conservative than Barry Goldwater.

There is no more iconic Arizona Republican than Barry Goldwater.

Now, Barry Goldwater's granddaughter explains why she (and her siblings and some of her cousins) will be voting for Barack Obama.

McCain has lost the support of an iconic Republican family in his home state!



Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Yep. The GOP can relate


to Joe six-pack and Joe Plumber etc alright.

The GOP has spent over $150,000 on Sarah Palin's wardrobe, makeup and other campaign accessories.

And of course, McCain has an estimated net worth of $25-38 million and owns a dozen houses and cars and such.

Whereas a candidate on a supposedly elitist, out-of touch, ticket---Joe Biden---has an estimated net worth of $100000-$150000 after 36 years in the Senate.

Yet, tens of millions of middle/working class people will go and vote for the GOP even though its policies have steadily and surely destroyed the standard of living of the middle/working class people.

That is the magic of Republican Jesus cloaked in the American flag and carrying an assault weapon.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

It's sad, really


The latest in the stinking dumpster-fire that is the McCain/Palin crusa...errr campaign.

I've been saying this for a while---John McCain is not in control of his mental faculties. He is at least senile, and possibly worse off than that. Here's the latest instance of his making an ass of himself (watch the clip -- it is only a couple of minutes long).

Then there's Sarah Palin, the 'reformer' who accuses Obama of being a wealth-redistributor, doing some reforming and non-wealth-redistributing herself.

Still, over 40 million people are going to vote for this ticket. So, is sad, really.


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Presidential Debate Summary

I don't have the graphics-fu to figure out how to make the captions appear better on this page. Please click on the image if you wish to see a clearer version.


Sunday, October 12, 2008

Roseanne Cash takes Sarah Palin behind the woodshed

Roseanne Cash (yeah, daughter of THE Johnny Cash) makes her case for the vice-presidency.
(h/t Onegoodmove)

It is worth the read, so do check it out.


Thursday, October 9, 2008

Bailout recap


So, on Friday, Sept. 26, the DJIA closed at 11,143.13.

On Monday, Sept. 29, the first bailout bill (for $700 billion) went to a vote in the House. And got voted down. So the DJIA closed at 10,365.45.
And everyone went OMG!!! We have to do something, otherwise our economy will tank!!! We have to bail out the poor fatcats who really really fucked up while paying themselves billions in BONUSES!!!! ACT NOW!!! We lost a trillion dollars today!!!!

Fast forward two days to Oct 1. The Senate passes a bailout bill and urges the House to pass it. There's talk of tax-incentives (bribing some Congressmen with pork disguised as Vitamin C). Wall Street gets some wind of hope over the past two days and the DJIA closes at 10,831.07.

Fast forward two more days to Fri., Oct 3 when the House passes a bailout bill that will now cost the taxpayer merely $800+ billion dollars---damn, the people and their Reps drive a hard muthafuckin bargain!! But over the past two days Wall Street is a bit disappointed with the lack of enthusiasm on the part of the ungrateful, financially-stupid, largely goddamned liberal-commie, general populace to keep giving them billions of dollars in bonuses, so the DJIA closes at 10,325.38.

But the much-needed action had been taken. The toxic mortgages (worth about $100-$150 billion in all) have been bailed out, plus there's some $500-$600 billion spare change left over to "restore the confidence in the credit markets". PHEW!!

Fast forward to Oct.9, when the DJIA closed at 8,579.19. Yup, it has only lost about 17% of its total value in the week since the bailout.

Well at least it's a good thing that the fiscally-responsible Republicans have had the White House for the past 7+ years and the House and the Senate for 4 of those years! Surely we built up a nice cushion! What? We have nearly doubled our national debt in those past 7+ years??!! Damn tax-and-spend liberals MUST be SOMEHOW responsible!!

Hey, common working dude and dudette---do you feel something trickle down? Well, that's just some blood from the anal-rape that you've suffered because, well, freedom isn't free, and stuff like that. But please, please, feel free to close your eyes or bury your head in the sand and convince yourself that it is some liberal's fault. Because it could not be ---just could not be--- possible that good old Ronnie Reagan could reach out from the depths of his tomb and ass-fuck you with his massive, deregulating, now-fully-distended, supply-side cock, could it? No. No way.

So the solution is obvious. An $800 billion dollar bailout could not stop an 800-point drop in the DJIA. Now it has fallen a further 1700 points or so. So we need at least another $2 trillion in the bailout, to try and appease the hard-working-for-such-peanuts Wall Street investment bankers and see if they will deem you worthy of saving. If you are really really nice to them, and give them another 2-3 trillion dollars and say 'pretty-please with sugar on top', then maybe they'll get Wall St. back on track, get ROARING, create a veritable boom of, say, 20% increase from current levels in one year---back to 10K baby!---and you, the miserable, ungrateful taxpayer, would have restricted your collective 401K losses to only $2 trillion or so!!!!

So what are you waiting for? Go on, urge your Congressmen and Senators to do the only truly American thing that can be done. Give the rich guys more money so they can create prosperity for you!!! That is how capitalism works don't you see, you pig-headed clods?


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

White Privilege

Things that make you go Hmmmm....

A great, must-read, post on White Privilege at the Earth-Bound Misfit's site.
(Update: As Comrade Physioprof pointed out in his comment, that should read " the Comrade Earth-Bound Misfit's site").

I know I go to the "must-read" well often---but this next month is crucial to our nation's future and I think we should read (and circulate) as many of these great essays/articles/posts as we can.
Please do take the time.


Matt Taibbi Nails It!

A must-read article titled "Mad Dog Palin" by Matt Taibbi in Rolling Stone. The subtitle:
The scariest thing about John McCain's running mate isn't how unqualified she is - it's what her candidacy says about America.

(h/t d r i f t g l a s s)

A couple of excerpts:

Sarah Palin is a symbol of everything that is wrong with the modern United States. As a representative of our political system, she's a new low in reptilian villainy, the ultimate cynical masterwork of puppeteers like Karl Rove. But more than that, she is a horrifying symbol of how little we ask for in return for the total surrender of our political power. Not only is Sarah Palin a fraud, she's the tawdriest, most half-assed fraud imaginable, 20 floors below the lowest common denominator, a character too dumb even for daytime TV — and this country is going to eat her up, cheering her every step of the way. All because most Americans no longer have the energy to do anything but lie back and allow ourselves to be jacked off by the calculating thieves who run this grasping consumer paradise we call a nation.
The great insight of the Palin VP choice is that huge chunks of American voters no longer even demand that their candidates actually have policy positions; they simply consume them as media entertainment, rooting for or against them according to the reflexive prejudices of their demographic, as they would for reality-show contestants or sitcom characters.

So, sure, Barack Obama might be every bit as much a slick piece of imageering as Sarah Palin. The difference is in what the image represents. The Obama image represents tolerance, intelligence, education, patience with the notion of compromise and negotiation, and a willingness to stare ugly facts right in the face, all qualities we're actually going to need in government if we're going to get out of this huge mess we're in.

Here's what Sarah Palin represents: being a fat fucking pig who pins "Country First" buttons on his man titties and chants "U-S-A! U-S-A!" at the top of his lungs while his kids live off credit cards and Saudis buy up all the mortgages in Kansas.


Go read the whole thing.


Sunday, October 5, 2008

When you have eight minutes to spare


and you want to listen to a bold and great speech, take a look at this piece that the Earth-Bound Misfit posted on her site.


Veep Throat needs more history lessons


Sarah Palin claims that Obama is "pallin around with terrorists". Well reee-heee-heeee--alllyyyyyy!

Anyone want to ask her about her very close association with the secessionist (and therefore treasonous) Alaskan Independence Party?

Or ask her why, given that Osama bin Laden was suspect #1 on 9/11, the Bush administration actually helped multiple members of their buddy-buddy binLaden family to fly out of the country on Sept 12, 2001, before the FBI got a chance to question any of them?

Talk about 'palling around with terrorists'!! ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

And while we are at it, can someone make a prominent and sustained point about the sheer shameless hypocrisy of the Repubs claimining that Gwen Ifill had conflict of interest when Halliburton essentially set our energy policy, war policy, and also profited to the tune of hundreds of billions from this war that was essentially a money-laundering operation to shift billions of taxpayer dollars into the coffers of Bush/Cheney cronies?

If they don't make you sick---the whole lot of these chronically lying, thieving, murdering, morally-bankrupt republicans---then you are not a patriot.


Friday, October 3, 2008

Debate Highlight


I wish this exchange would get more play and discussion. In her answer Sarah Palin reveals her desire to continue to disregard the constitution and play the power-grab-at-any-cost game that the Republicans have played the past 7 years, seriously damaging the rule of law in this country in the process.
With her one answer, she summed up the current GOP philosophy on ignoring the law based on nonsensical misinterpretations of the Constitution.

Biden, of course, kicks ass in his response, as he did all night. It is an insult to an accomplished public servant like Biden that he had to decorously debate that power-hungry vindictive parrot-bimbo in the first place. Anyway, except follows. Emphases mine.

IFILL: Governor, you mentioned a moment ago the constitution might give the vice president more power than it has in the past. Do you believe as Vice President Cheney does, that the Executive Branch does not hold complete sway over the office of the vice presidency, that it it is also a member of the Legislative Branch?

PALIN: Well, our founding fathers were very wise there in allowing through the Constitution much flexibility there in the office of the vice president. And we will do what is best for the American people in tapping into that position and ushering in an agenda that is supportive and cooperative with the president's agenda in that position. Yeah, so I do agree with him that we have a lot of flexibility in there, and we'll do what we have to do to administer very appropriately the plans that are needed for this nation. And it is my executive experience that is partly to be attributed to my pick as V.P. with McCain, not only as a governor, but earlier on as a mayor, as an oil and gas regulator, as a business owner. It is those years of experience on an executive level that will be put to good use in the White House also.

(Me: What the fuck does that even mean? Give me unlimited power and trust me to do the right thing for America?)

IFILL: Vice President Cheney's interpretation of the vice presidency?

BIDEN: Vice President Cheney has been the most dangerous vice president we've had probably in American history. The idea he doesn't realize that Article I of the Constitution defines the role of the vice president of the United States, that's the Executive Branch. He works in the Executive Branch. He should understand that. Everyone should understand that.

And the primary role of the vice president of the United States of America is to support the president of the United States of America, give that president his or her best judgment when sought, and as vice president, to preside over the Senate, only in a time when in fact there's a tie vote. The Constitution is explicit.

The only authority the vice president has from the legislative standpoint is the vote, only when there is a tie vote. He has no authority relative to the Congress. The idea he's part of the Legislative Branch is a bizarre notion invented by Cheney to aggrandize the power of a unitary executive and look where it has gotten us. It has been very dangerous.

Entire debate transcript available here.


Thursday, October 2, 2008

And I thought I was pissed.


(WARNING: There's profanity and some pretty strong language/imagery that may make some people uneasy. Don't click on the link if you are offended by profanity or if you are just offended easily).

The Rude Pundit gives his take on what Biden should say tonight.

I'm laughing so hard I can barely type.


Sen. Bernie Sanders sums it up pretty nicely......


I love it because he is a "take back the ill-gotten and ill-deserved gains/bonuses" kind of guy.

Read his take here.

Update: And Sen. Russ Feingold's short take is worth reading too. Key excerpt about an issue that needs to be addressed now but is being ignored by most.....

"Finally, negotiators must address the deeply flawed regulatory structure that paved the way for this crisis. The administration and others have said such reforms must wait for another day, but once a rescue package is enacted, we lose the leverage needed to enact tough reforms to get the financial sector to clean up its act, and we risk having to deal with this same mess all over again."


Wednesday, October 1, 2008



The Senate passes a bailout bill that's very similar to the one the House rejected. In order to win over some votes in the House, the Senators had to add some 'sweeteners' in the form of tax breaks for the middle class and small businesses (yeah....if you are an average working American and believe that you'll see any of that money, I've got a bridge in Brooklyn you'll be interested in buying). So now the bailout is going to cost us close to $800 billion dollars. And no, we still don't get any equity or executive power in the investment banks that fucked up so royally and that will be greedily gobbling up this money. And no, nobody will be held to account for bringing the economy to the alleged brink of disaster.

Carlin was correct---we were doomed when the priests and traders got a hold of us....we're just playing out the string now. We are finished. Done.