Wednesday, December 30, 2009

More Answers

I received this in an e-mail the other day. I did as instructed and "pondered". Now, through the miracle of modern technology, I share my pondering with all of you

Thoughts to Ponder

1. I wish Google Maps had an "Avoid Ghetto" routing option.

Yes, because if you don't see them they don't exist. Here's an idea: Try wishing that Public Housing had an "Avoid Ghetto" option. If enough of us wish for it, maybe the people who run HUD and other government housing agencies will figure out how to put people in temporary, low-income residences without building little gulags of murder and drugs! On the other hand, wish in one shoe, crap in the other, and see which fills up first. Perhaps instead of wishing, you could find a useful way to end the ghettoization of the poor, like actually doing some research on the candidates before you vote in the next election.

2. Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.
I suppose that would suck. If I was ever wrong, that is. The problem here is not that you're wrong but that you turn discussions into arguments. Here's something you can try: Before entering into a discussion with someone, try to look at the situation from their point of view. If that doesn't help, take a moment to review the facts before using the words "Wrong, moron!" so you can be absolutely sure you're not going to end up sleeping in your car for the next week.

3. I totally take back all those times I didn't want to nap when I was younger.
Yes, because instead of napping as a toddler you could have been curing cancer or plugging that dad-blasted hole in ozone layer! Our loss, I suppose.

4. The letters T and G are very close to each other on a keyboard. This recently became all too apparent to me and consequently I will never be ending a work email with the phrase "Regards" again.
Close to each other? They're on separate fucking lines! Touch typing is not difficult, nor is proofreading your correspondence before hitting that "send" button. Do you have exceptionally fat fingers? Or is the Cheetos grime so thick on your keyboard that you can't see the letters? I recommend a soft cloth and some warm water before you attempt further communication. After all, you don't want to look like an idiom!

5. There is a great need for sarcasm font.
Oh, I agree! There really isn't any good way to convey sarcasm in type!

6. Sometimes, I'll watch a movie that I watched when I was younger and suddenly realize I had no idea what the f*** was going on when I first saw it.
Ever think that perhaps you really did understand it the first time and your brain is simply deteriorating as time moves you inexorably closer to old age and sweet, sweet death? Either way, you are not alone. This is a common disease known as stupidity. Millions of people suffer from it and it's the single most important reason that the Nation of Morons exists. To help rid the world of this terrible scourge, send your cash donation to the Nation of Morons as soon as possible!

7. How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?
You must be one of those Yuppies I've heard about. Well, if you're really having trouble, try this: Lay the sheet upside-down on your bed. (Or right-side up, it really doesn't matter.) Fold the fittings, (the parts that cover and tuck under the mattress sides,) inward. Now fold and straighten as you would an ordinary sheet. The parts which seem to be giving you trouble are now hidden from view and your neighbors won't think you're some smug Erika Pekkari whore when they poke around in your linen closet.

8. I would rather try to carry 10 plastic grocery bags in each hand than take 2 trips to bring my groceries in.
You're hired! I need a good porter and not one who's going to lollygag around all day with the fucking groceries. This is an exceptionally lucid and concise observation. Who wrote it for you?

9. I think part of a best friend's job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.
It's called a dead-man switch. There are plenty of programs out there which will wipe your electronic slate clean at a certain time if you haven't entered a password, or if you haven't entered a correct password. I suggest installing one soon, because face it, we all know that our "friends" are just waiting for us to kick the bucket so they can access all of the bribery-worthy shit we stupidly keep on our hard drives. Especially your friends!

10. The only time I look forward to a red light is when I'm trying to finish a text.
Because you are a fucking moron. Put the Blackberry down and pay attention the the road and traffic. It's buffoons like you that make insurance rates go up.

11. Was learning cursive really necessary?
I suppose not. But it's awfully nice to be able to hand-engrave invitations when you need to without forking over $650 to someone who wasn't napping in school.

12. I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.
I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between stupidity and you. No, wait… I don't. Let me clear this up for you: If you are eating some sort of foodstuff you are probably hungry, if you are engaged in an activity with no clear worthwhile benefit you are most probably bored. Next time you are bored, (you know, when you are not eating something,) try sticking one of those enormous fingers in an electrical socket. This should un-bore you in a jiffy!

13. How many times is it appropriate to say "What?" before you just nod and smile because you still didn't hear what they said?

14. I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars teams up to prevent an idiot from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers and sisters!
Yes, and it's a good way to ruin the paint job on your car as well. Stop using vehicles as weapons… that's what weapons are for! Shoot the cutters tires out instead. He will then have time to ponder his insensitivity as he sheepishly walks to the nearest Goodyear store.

15. MapQuest really needs to start their directions on #5. Pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.
Again with MapQuest? It's not their fault some lackwit keeps entering his home address when he needs to go somewhere. Here's a thought: For your starting point, try entering the last location on your route that you know how to get to! And stop blaming computer programs for your own stupidity.

16. Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died.
Most of them do. It's usually at the end of the first paragraph. Here's an example:

John Q Emailer, 45, of Internet City, an unemployed web-surfer, died of asphyxiation from a "Send" key lodged in his throat, in his low-rent apartment, Thursday at 9 A.M.

Some obits don't list a cause of death. this is usually because the bereaved family thinks it's none of your god-damned business, which is true. Really, if you knew the deceased, then you probably already know how they died. If you didn't, what the fuck are you reading their obit for in the first place? Sometimes the cause of death is kept private because it could be embarrassing, say, shot while robbing a liquor store or electrocution from jamming fingers into an electrical socket.

17. Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever.
Just ask those homeless guys downtown. Of course, the underwear helps to keep the inside of the pants cleaner awhile longer, but take my advice: Buy some laundry detergent and do a few loads, including the pants. Trust me on this one. And while you're doing the wash, pull out all the crap you never wear anymore and take it to a shelter. There are people in this world who need clothes more than you know.

18. I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least kind of tired.
Really? I can. It was right before I opened this e-mail.

19. Bad decisions and bad experiences make good stories.
Your life in a nutshell, eh? Tell us about the time the cops found you on the Saint Joseph's altar, naked and unconscious among the baked goods, with an empty bottle of Everclear in one hand and half a bag of Pat O's Hurricane Mix spilling out of your mouth. I never get tired of that one!

20. Is it just me or do high school girls get sluttier & sluttier every year?
You both do. High school girls get sluttier because of bad parenting, loose morals and the Disney Channel. I'm not sure what your excuse but I have a feeling it's desperation.

21. You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you've made up your mind that you just aren't going to do anything productive for the rest of the day.
Obviously my anonymous e-mailer is Ray Nagin. Or maybe Aaron Broussard. Or any of the other worthless, self-serving miscreants you people elect to public office every other year. And that moment for most politicians is called 9 A.M.

22. There's no worse feeling than that millisecond you're sure you are going to die after leaning your chair back a little too far.
Not really, it's a fucking chair. And unless you're Karl Wallenda and the chair is precariously balanced on a piece of dental floss strung between the 88th floors of the Petronas Towers, you are seriously overestimating the hazard. Perhaps you should just lie down on the floor and wait for the planet to stop spinning.

23. I'm always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten page research paper that I swear I did not make any changes to.
That's because Word automatically selects keywords and data from your documents and transmits them to Redmond, WA where they are concatenated, compared and crunched with other similar data which is then processed into articles, papers, books and other reports and copyrighted to Microsoft. The "change" you get is the time-stamp Word adds to the document each time it is searched. (Believe it or not, Bill Gates has nothing to do with this. Paul Allen is the mastermind behind this particularly nefarious bit of scumbaggery.)

24. I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.
Could be because we're all trying our dog-gonedest to avoid you, you simpering, vain attention whore. I'm certain you're confident, but you may wish to check a Webster's for the precise definition of "looking good."

25. As a driver I hate pedestrians, and as a pedestrian I hate drivers, but no matter what the mode of transportation, I always hate cyclists.
Indeed, they're incredibly bothersome to drivers and pedestrians, not to mention airline pilots, boat captains and astronauts. Are you sure this isn't more of a "thin, healthy person" hatred? Remember the following equation: Me-Cake+Exercise=Thin. After a few months you might even be able to fit on a bicycle!

26. Sometimes I'll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is.
And you probably have a digital watch. Hell, I can usually tell the time of day by the position of the sun. (Give or take three hours.) Ordinarily I'd say this was a problem, but since it's you I wouldn't worry too much. It's not like you have a job to go to or friends to visit. (But hey! If you clean those pants, that might change!)

27. It should probably be called Unplanned Parenthood.
Find your moms old brochures?

28. I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.
And yet every time we inevitably meet face to face you always begin with, "Hey, I called you the other day but you didn't answer." Honestly I wish you'd get a clue because I'm running out of excuses.

29. Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket, finding their cell phone, and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey - but I'd bet my a$$ everyone can find and push the Snooze button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time every time...
What sort of imbecile can't find his keys in his pocket? You seem to have nothing but scorn for maps and timepieces. Remind me not to include you in any covert operations in the future.

For more snappy answers to stupid questions, you can check out this older post!

Happy New Year everybody!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Akasia Lee Sentenced


New Orleans resident AKASIA LEE, age 36, was sentenced Nov 17, 2009, in federal court by US District Judge Mary Ann Vial Lemmon to five years in prison for her role in the conspiracy to commit health care fraud. In addition, Judge Lemmon ordered restitution of $3,977,288, a fine of $1 million, and three years of federally supervised release following imprisonment, during which time the defendant risks an additional term of imprisonment should she violate any terms of her release.

According to court documents, on March 19, 2009, Lee pled guilty to one count of a superseding indictment admitting that she and other employees of A New Beginning of New Orleans, Inc. (ANBNO) conspired to commit health care fraud. Lee, the owner/operator of ANBNO, a Medicaid provider that made claims for Personal Care Services (PCS) it claimed to have provided to Medicaid recipients, solicited mothers with children who had Medicaid benefits to apply for care. Lee admitted that after Medicaid approved the applications, false documentation containing employee time sheets and daily schedules detailing services rendered to recipients was created by employees of ANBNO and parents of the Medicaid recipient children. Lee admitted that Medicaid paid approximately $3,977,288 as a result of the fraudulent claims made by ANBNO and its employees.

The case was investigated by agents of the FBI, the US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, and the Louisiana Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. The case was prosecuted by Assistant US Attorneys Patrice Harris Sullivan, Jordan Ginsberg and G. Dall Kammer.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Click For Cans

OK, a little corporate shilling here but trust me it's for a good cause. Campbell's Soups Chunky brand is having a contest and all you have to do is go there and vote. No signing up for e-adverts, or entering personal info. Why should you? It's a Saints thing and you can vote every day. Again, why should you? To feed people!

Campbell's is donating soup to NFL teams which they will distribute to local food banks. In our case this will be Second Harvest. 1,000 cans of soup will be donated to each team regardless of the voting outcome. The team receiving the most votes for the AFC and NFC get an additional 12,000 cans and the overall winner gets another 5,000 cans. This means if you lazy kids out there can click a button enough times for the Saints, you could help bring in 18,000 cans of soup to help feed people. And not watered down MRE soup, but so-chunky-you-could-eat-it-with-a-fork-but-use-a-spoon Chunky Soup!

The contest goes on through the end of the season when the four AFC and NFC teams with the most votes enter single elimination "playoffs" for three weeks to crown the overall winner. This means each of you reading this can add over seventy votes for the Saints from here on in! Just go to Chunky's website and click the Vote Now button, then pick the Saints matchup and choose our home team. And hurry! As of this posting the Saints 5,042 votes are second to the Packers 8,971 this week. In the time it took me to type that and double check the numbers the Pack gained four votes and the Saints gained none, so get your fingers moving and help feed some people in New Orleans!

And don't forget to blast this to everyone you know!

Thanks to local Kazoozie Floozie Debra Gunter for the heads-up on this!

Sunday, August 30, 2009


I shot this in April of 2006, when hope still shone on Charity Hospital like a beacon. At the time I didn't do anything with it, but I remembered thinking that the surrounding clouds looked like a portent of dire warning if ever there was one. Fancy that. Now this photograph has decided it wants to speak, to scream in agony with a voice that could pierce the ears of the deaf. I am only too happy to lend it my stage.

It has become painfully clear to me now that there is no hope for Charity. LSU wants a shiny new sprawling medical complex and they don't care what historic landmarks or neighborhoods or communities stand in their way. It's been four years since Hurricane Katrina gave LSU and the State of Louisiana the Golden Opportunity to lock the doors on Charity. Since then it has languished, decaying day by day like the health of the citizens of New Orleans.

Mayor Nagin is a clueless, ineffective caricature of leadership, concerned more with lining his pockets than the well-being of this city. Governor Jindal is on the money train with his cronies and frat brothers at LSU, even though they have failed multiple times to find financing for their boondoggle. President Obama certainly could care less, otherwise he would have sliced us off a tasty hunk of that Stimulus Cheese to help solve the problem. So what can we do?

Let's die.

Winter is coming and this gives us all a great opportunity to catch pneumonia and die. And when it's time for all of us to go, let's use our last breaths to crawl to the locked and boarded cyclone fence that surrounds Charity and shuffle off this mortal coil in mass protest. That'll show 'em! Piles of corpses surrounding the building, cough drops and throat lozenges clogging the sewers like so many discarded Mardi Gras doubloons and Moon Pies, rivers of phlegm and mucous running down Tulane Avenue to the river, and in each of our hands a can of LSU brand Chicken Soup with the handwritten message, "It's not working." Is that what it would take for someone in Baton Rouge to finally wake up and do something?

Unless of course, that's exactly what they're waiting for…

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

What To Do With Dollar Bill

For the last several hours, (and I'm certain for the next several as well,) Talk Radio has been abuzz with that very question. What sentence should be given to Former Louisiana State Senator/Former Louisiana Congressman/Convicted Felon William Jennings Jefferson? (Check out his Wiki page. They've already added "convicted felon" to it.) The 'Man-In-The-Street' has suggested everything from complete exoneration to the death penalty. I have the answer.

One year in jail for every year he pretended to be working for the people of Louisiana. While he was first elected to public office in 1979 he has only been a federal politician for eighteen years, from 1990 to 2008. The crimes in question come directly from his time spent as a member of the US House of Representatives and that's where my reasoning comes from. Eighteen years. Does he deserve more? Probably, but I think eighteen years is appropriate. He would be 80 at the time of his release.

If he lives that long.

No parole, no time off for good behaviour. Face it, the 'good behaviour' deal is actually geared toward violent offenders. It's a gift if they can manage to act like a human being. Jefferson is not a violent criminal and I don't expect him to start shivving prison guards ten minutes after he is placed in custody. Parole is derived from the French term for "(spoken) word." It became linked to prisoner release as the inmate in question gave their "word of honor" that they would not return to a life of crime. Bill Jefferson? Word of honor? Thank you for applying, next inmate, please.

The airwaves are filled with people who think that anything more than fifteen years would be excessive. Former US Attorney Harry Rosenberg posits that Jefferson will eventually receive between 10-15 years.

Comparisons have been drawn to Edwin Edwards who received ten years in prison for his roles in bribery schemes to award riverboat casino licenses in Louisiana. While the crimes may appear similar, at least Edwards was actually bringing businesses into the state and jobs to his constituents. Jefferson was buying himself and his family into foreign based businesses with no benefit whatsoever to the people he represented.

Comparisons have also been drawn to Bernie Madoff whose Ponzi Scheme siphoned over ten-billion dollars from unsuspecting investors. Madoff received a sentence of 150 years for his shenanigans which some people think is far worse than Jefferson's crimes. They claim that Jefferson never harmed or killed anyone by accepting bribes. I think they're wrong.

While Jefferson never actually pulled a trigger or slit a throat, money that he and his family collected through Federal Government grants intended for the numerous "non-profit" organizations they own ended up lining their own pockets. Money which could have been the difference between a child picking up a pen, brush or math book instead of a gun or a crack pipe. Can you honestly tell me, with a straight face, that Bill Jefferson's actions caused harm to no-one?

For those of you thinking that eighteen years is too light a sentence, remember there's the forfeiture. The thinking here is that Jefferson will end up having to forfeit at least a half a million dollars which he and his family members profited through his shady dealings. I think that's abysmally low. Let's set a precedent and force him to pay back the Federal Government every cent he made from his salary as a congressman. Let's make that the rule of law for any public official convicted of corruption. Jefferson's forfeiture hearing is set for today.

Jefferson's actions have cast doubt on his entire career of "public service" and for that, he should pay dearly and lose his entire paycheck from his "service" on Capitol Hill. That would add just over 2.7 million dollars to his forfeiture, and for Bill Jefferson, a man who worships the all-mighty dollar, that would hurt him more than any prison term.

UPDATE: Jefferson's forfeiture hearing ran its course today, and as expected he will have to cough up over $470 million, plus millions of shares of (now worthless) stock in a (now defunct) Nigerian telecom company. Next up is his sentencing, scheduled for October 30th.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Visit Humid City!

Sorry I've not posted much recently. I've been busy. However, I do have a new little post regarding "boutique" land baron and trusted public servant Sean Cummings over at HumidCity! Please visit and if you feel like commenting, do it over there so we can keep all our gripes in one basket.


Friday, July 24, 2009

Vote Now!

See that little ad next to this post? The one for K+36: the lower ninth? That's my first book and it's entered in the 2009 Blurb Photography Book Now competition. It's up for a People's Choice Award and if you're so inclined, you can vote for it by following this link:

You can also purchase the book from the same page or leave a comment, again, if you're so inclined!

UPDATE: By the way, voting is now closed. Thanks to all who stopped by. You can still use the link to check out the book!

UPDATE: The results are in and there's no easy way to say it… I'm a loser! No matter, I got the book shown to many more people and it helps keep the word out that there are still problems in New Orleans. Luckily, the Steelers won their home opener which decidedly helps to ease the pain.

Thanks to all who helped get the word out and thanks for all your support!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

…and that's the way it is…

Walter Cronkite, the worlds last trustworthy and true journalist, died yesterday. He was 92 years old. Unfortunately, he lived long enough to see Dan Rather and Katie Couric destroy the integrity of the CBS Evening News, reducing it to nothing more than a gossip and rumour-mill.

I have missed Walter since his retirement in the early Eighties. I miss him even more now.

Repose en Paix.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Yeppers, It's A Color Change!

Since I'm old and going blind I thought I'd make the page a little easier to read for my three fans out there. Enjoy!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Sixty-Eight Brother!

It's official and the 94th Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest is in the books! Sixty-eight hot dogs and buns in ten minutes! World Record for Mister Joey Chestnut and he three-peats, keeping the Mustard Belt in the good ol' US of A for another year! Takeru Kobayashi gave it a good run but only held the lead for a dog or two somewhere in the early twenties. After that it was all Joey.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: God bless America, God bless hot-dogs and God bless Joey Chestnut!

Holiday Hodgepodge!

Our top story… Generalisimo Francisco Jackson is still dead.
In what is destined to be the hugest waste of time since the coverage of Sarah Palin's Vice-Presidential run, the Death of Michael Jackson continues to fascinate and dazzle the media. Now with Diprivan!! And just a few years ago everyone was calling for Mike's immediate incarceration, castration and execution for being a "weirdo, a freak and a child molester." Now it's all tears and tributes. Sometimes you people sicken me.

Michael Jackson was simply what we all are. A sad, flawed human being, struggling to find happiness in a world that simply doesn't give a shit. Do I think he was a child molester? No. I think he had a severely regressed personality which would not allow him to enter adulthood the way normal people do. Do I think he was the "King of Pop?" No. That was Elvis. It is still Elvis. It will always be Elvis. So do me a favor and bury Michael and the incessant media coverage. It's sad that a person died, but I don't need updates every ten fucking minutes. Thank you.

And speaking of Sarah Palin…
She quit.


In a rambling farewell address that lasted almost as long as her Vice-Presidential run, the Republican dilletante-du-jour threw in the towel. She cited the fact that great changes can be made outside of government as one of her reasons for stepping down. That's nice, but it's usually the type of thing used to motivate the citizenry to get off their asses and participate in events, not sitting governors! Essentially, her statement reads as, "I am so ineffective that I can't do anything, even with the power of a governor."

She cited her decision not to run for re-election as one of the many motivating forces in her decision to resign. According to La Palin, lame-duck politicians are lazy bastards who do nothing but pick up a check at the end of every month. The thing is, to qualify as a "lame-duck," you need to be on your way out. Had you lost a re-election campaign, you would be a "lame-duck," not because you decided not to run. Not only that, but Palin still has a year-and-a-half left on her term!

The media is circulating rumours of impending and ongoing ethics violations as possible reasons for the surprise resignation. Fact is, Sarah Palin is the Alaskan equivalent of New Orleans Mayor C Ray Nagin. She spends almost no time in office, preferring instead to travel the Lower 48 begging for political handouts. And she brings her brood everywhere she goes, paying their way with state money. Each time she travels, someone slaps an ethics complaint against her. Each time the cases are reviewed the outcome is the same: Palin's trip is classified as "state business" but the bill for her family is not covered, so she ends up repaying the state for that portion of her spending. Then she holds a "press conference" explaining that she did nothing wrong. While it's true that she did nothing wrong, it's only because the people of Alaska have to keep after her to pay her share of the bills. She's like the dumbass college roommate who's always mooching off his buddies even though his parents are loaded.

During her vapid farewell, she also quoted General Douglass MacArthur, saying "We are not retreating, just advancing in a different direction." Strong words. Strong, and for Palin as usual, wrong. The actual quote comes from USMC Major General Oliver P Smith and stems from a British reporter asking him about the UN Forces "retreat" from the Chosin Reservoir during the Vietnam War. Smith's reply was, "There can be no retreat when there's no rear. You can't retreat, or even withdraw, when you're surrounded. The only thing you can do is break out, and in order to do that you have to attack, and that is what we're about to do. Heck, all we're doing is attacking in a different direction." Sounds like an admission that she's in way over her head to me.

She also compared herself to wounded war veterans and basketball stars as she tried to explain her actions. Speculation is that she's more concerned with her new million-dollar book deal or a possible 2012 run for, (and this is the part that really makes me giggle,) president!


Call Us When You Get Some Real Weapons!
North Korea fired off a half-dozen or so "Scud-like" missiles while we slept last night. Seriously? "Scud-like?" Weren't those the cheap bottle-rockets that the Sovs foisted off on the Middle East back in the Eighties? You know, the ones that fell apart and failed to detonate when US Forces gave them a stern look? Come on Kim Jong, we know you wanna be a World Class Gangsta Nigga, but Scuds ain't nothing but D Thang. That's D for Derision. Or Dumbass. Or Douchbag, Dope, Dipstick, Dip-tard… the list goes on. Next!

It's about damned time!
Today, the Statue of Liberty opens her crown to the public once again. The crown has been closed since 9/11 and has symbolized the empty-headed policies of the Bush Administration over the last eight years. If President Obama gets nothing else right during his term, I will still be forever grateful to him for this one act.

Gentlemen, Start Your Gastrointestines!
Just a few hours to go until the Nathan's Famous Hot-Dog Eating Contest. We here at the NoM wish good luck to all the entrants, but especially to the 2007 and 2008 Champion, American, Joey Chestnut. Give 'em Hell, Joey!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Now Is The Time…

…for all good freaks to come to the aid of their Stybby!

Awhile back I entered the "Rename Stride's Ridiculously Long Lasting Mint Flavored Gum Contest" and I made the top ten finalists with 'Mintfinity.' (Clever, eh?) Unfortunately, I recently found a twit who also entered the same name and twittered it out to everyone so I might be sharing the 10K prize with 10K other people. Oh well, here's your chance to make someone rich. Go to and sign up (yeah, I know, I know, btu just use that yahoo account you keep around for stupid contests) then vote for my entry: Mintfinity! Who knows… if I actually win, I might peel off a few hundred for a celebration party!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

RNC Report: The Specter of Failure

Got another RNC "Newsletter" today.
Dear Michael,

Wait, I think I get it… This isn't addressed to me; it's just Michael Steele talking to the only person who will listen… himself!
I hope Arlen Specter's party change outrages you. It should for two reasons:

Actually I find it pretty hilarious.
First--Specter claimed it was philosophical--and pointed his finger of blame at Republicans all over America for his defection to the Democrats. He told us all to go jump in the lake today.

Shit, I've been telling you idiots to do that since 1976. Both Republicans and Democrats could use a swim.
I'm sorry, but I don't believe a word he said.

Big surprise!
Arlen Specter committed a purely political and self-serving act today. He simply believes he has a better chance of saving his political hide and his job as a Democrat. He loves the title of Senator more than he loves the party--and the principles--that elected him and nurtured him.

Wow. Figured that one out, did you? But do you hear yourself? All you're concerned with is the well-being of the Republican Party, not the country. By your own words you admit that the Republican Party is the most important thing to you, not the country, not the people and not the freedoms which this country was founded on. You guys sound more and more like Joe Stalin each day.
Second--and more importantly--Arlen Specter handed Barack Obama and his band of radical leftists nearly absolute power in the United States Senate. In leaving the Republican Party--and joining the Democrats--he absolutely undercut Republicans' efforts to slow down Obama's radical agenda through the threat of filibuster.

You mean an unbreakable grip on the senate like the Republicans had during the Bush Regime? So, it's OK if you guys have unlimited power, but not anyone else? How tyrannical of you Michael. But think of this: Had the Republican Party been more concerned with the well-being of the country than with that of itself, you idiots wouldn't be in this position in the first place. If you ask me, you guys could use a good twelve-step program and skipping ahead to step eight would be a good start.
Facing defeat in Pennsylvania's 2010 Republican primary due to his left-wing voting record, and an end to his 30 year career in the U.S. Senate, he has peddled his services--and his vote--to the leftist Obama Democrats who aim to remake America with their leftist plan.

Give me a break Mike. Politicians peddle their services every day of the year in one form or another. How many back-room deals have you been a part of since you got into the game? How many times have you voted against your constituents wishes in order to secure a vote from another politician for a deal you had brewing? The only difference here is that Specter is publicly announcing that he's for sale in order to stay in power.
As recently as April 9th, Senator Specter said he would run in the Pennsylvania primary next year as a Republican. Why the sudden change of heart? Clearly, this was an act based on political expediency by a craven politician desperate to keep his Washington power base--not the act of a statesman.

Gosh Mike, would you say the same thing if Nancy Pelosi had decided to become a Republican? No. You'd be tripping all over yourself to welcome her into the fold with open arms, bending over backwards to kiss her ass and carving a marble pedestal to put her on. Unless…
…Say, is this one of those sneaky Republican tricks? You know, send in a spy, make a big fuss over his defection to make it look real and then when the chips are down, blammo! Hundreds of tiny little Republicans begin streaming out of Specter's ass and they slaughter all the Democrats and open the castle gates from the inside?
Nahhh, you're not that smart.
His defection to the Democrat Party puts the Democrats in an almost unstoppable position to pass Obama's destructive agenda of income redistribution, health care nationalization, and a massive expansion of entitlements.

There you go again whining about the Obama Power Monopoly. You guys had one and you blew it. Under the direction of the Republican Party George Bush and his merry band of idiots relaxed and repealed so many financial and corporate restrictions that this country almost imploded. Yes, Obama is fucking things up by spending way too much money, but he has to in order to fix the mess that your party made.
Arlen Specter has put his loyalty to his own political career above his duty to his state and nation.

Just like you do every time you send out these advertisements you call "newsletters." The RNC isn't concerned with healthcare, education, unemployment or any of the other thousand things that citizens worry about every day. All it cares about is feeding its' own dwindling coffers. Perhaps if the RNC began addressing the issues that matter, people might actually start sending you some cash.
You and I have a choice. Some will use Specter's defection as an excuse to fold the tent and give up. I believe that you are not one of those people. When Benedict Arnold defected to the British, George Washington didn't fold the tent and give up either.
He grit his teeth more determined than ever to succeed. That's what I'm asking you to do today.

Yes, but I'm not George Washington. And your inflated comparison is nothing more than the ether you publish it in. This is not the Revolutionary War. Do you realize that your statement above, while intended to paint Specter in a traitorious light, actually paints the Democrats as "Enemy Combatants?" Is that how you truly feel about half of the country? How badly do you want to defeat your enemy, the Democrats? Are you going to shoot them? Capture them and put them in your own private Andersonville? Would you waterboard them?
Join me in this fight by making a secure online contribution of $25, $50, $100, $500 or $1,000 right now to build our army of supporters and defeat Democrat candidates like Arlen Specter in next year's elections.
Stand with me. I need your support today.
Michael Steele
Chairman, Republican National Committee
P.S. Michael, we need to respond to Senator Specter's decision to join President Obama's efforts to change America into a European Welfare State. Please help our Party move forward by making a secure online contribution of $25, $50, $100, $500 or $1,000 to give our Republican leaders & candidates the political muscle they need to resist the Obama-Pelosi-Specter agenda. Thank you.

And there's the usual beggars' request for money. Keep trying Mike. You're not getting better, just funnier!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Dissecting RNC Propaganda

You don't hear much from the Republicans these days. Unless of course you're on the RNC mailing list. Every week I get a personal message from RNC Chairman Michael Steele asking me to take action to thwart the evil that President Barack Obama does. It's really funny and never fails to teach me about spin with its creative mixture of rhetoric, opinion and the occasional fact thrown in here and there. I thought I'd share one with you.

Dear Michael,

They all start like this. As if Mr Steele is my personal buddy. It's designed to give recipients that 'Wow, he knows my name!' squishy feeling inside, but I know it's just a macro in the mail program that just pastes in the recipients first name. Now that I think of it, It might be funny to sign up as "Shithead Jones" just so I can get e-mails from the RNC that start, "Dear Shithead."

Recently in his speech in France, Barack Obama called America "arrogant." 1 I'm sure the French loved it -- And so did the liberal press.

But who is this president who calls the American people arrogant?

OK, the footnote on this one looks like this:

1 "[A]rrogant." (President Barack Obama, Town Hall, Strasbourg, France, 4/3/09)

Far be it from me to instruct an educated man like Mike, but I'm not sure you can footnote one single word. I mean, there is the question of context. It's as if he said 'doughnut' or 'pistachio.' Really Mike, if you can't provide the whole quote, or at the least a link to it, you may as well not bother with the footnotes. To clarify your point, Obama did indeed use the word 'arrogant' but not about America per se. He used it in reference to the Bush Regime and its attitude to the rest of the world in matters of foreign policy.

This is the same politician whose supporters anointed him "The One" and a candidate who boasted that his election would be remembered as "the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal." 2

Get a grip Mike. You cannot accuse Obama of arrogance on the basis of a nickname give him by other people. Many people call Junior Bush a moron. Does that make it true? And your quote is extraordinarily miselading. Not only does the link connect to a Neo-Con blogger who equates it with Moses parting the Red Sea, your selective editing implies that Obama has delusions of grandeur. Want the truth? He was referring to Global Warming. Want to read the whole quote? Here you go: "The journey will be difficult. The road will be long. I face this challenge with profound humility, and knowledge of my own limitations. But I also face it with limitless faith in the capacity of the American people. Because if we are willing to work for it, and fight for it, and believe in it, then I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal; this was the moment when we ended a war and secured our nation and restored our image as the last, best hope on Earth. This was the moment - this was the time - when we came together to remake this great nation so that it may always reflect our very best selves, and our highest ideals." See what I mean about context? Ver, very naughty Michael. And very, very arrogant to think that intelligent people would not see through your clever ruse.

This is the same man who indicated his disdain for small town and working Americans when he said they "cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them," while addressing a group of San Francisco caviar and champagne liberal elitists.

How arrogant is that? Arrogant enough?

Have you ever been to a small town Mr Steele? I've been to plenty. We all remember this statement and the flap that resulted, but guess what? Small Town America does cling to its guns and its God. And they are distrustful and wary of people who aren't like them. It's a sad fact of life, but many communities are extraordinarily insular; small town, big city, you name it. People cling to certain beliefs and seek out like-minded individuals for companionship. This is how neighborhoods, villages, towns, cities and nations are formed. I think the RNC is just miffed at this generalization because it hits too close to home: Guns, God and Fear.

In truth, President Obama seems to champion the twisted "Blame-America First" mentality of the worst of the American left.

More importantly, it shows an absence of wisdom to criticize the United States while on foreign soil, and then join with the Pelosi-Reid Democrats in Congress to do everything possible to end American exceptionalism and create a weak, dependent socialist state patterned after the examples of Europe.

Now this is a masterful combination of button-pressing Mike! Who wrote it for you? Surely you will incite many of the Party Faithful with this one. You make blatant statements designed to anger the "converted" and at the same time salt them with escape clauses for plausible deniabilty. Words like "seems" and "shows" are great fallbacks when you're called to the carpet for being wrong. "Well, we didn't say he was blaming America, we said it seemed like he was."

* He has taken steps towards nationalizing American auto companies; firing executives while leaving in power the same Union Bosses who funded his campaign and helped cripple the U.S.'s manufacturing base.

Yes, unfortunately it does look like we're on a road to Nationalization. But what else are we going to do after the Republican Party allowed the auto companies to run their businesses into the ground? Don't even think of blaming Obama for the mess you and your cronies created with special congressional set-asides and the loosening of emission restrictions.

* He has refused to let financial firms pay back taxpayer-funded bailout loans 3 so he can make them hostages to the whims of the Federal government.

Actually, the banks you refer to do not want to "pay back" the loans. They want to retroactively not accept them in the first place. This is because they wish to continue the risky and immoral practices which caused the financial crisis in the first place. Not only that, but they know when they return the money, the smaller banks which need Federal assistance to stay afloat will look less attractive to customers and this may cause some investors to shift their money to the banks that can afford to pay back the loans. Then as the smaller banks fail, the remaining banks scoop them up at bargain prices.

* As a lawyer, Obama once sued the same financial institutions on behalf of radical groups like ACORN for failing to use leftist social engineering criteria for lending instead of an applicant's ability to repay a loan.

Wow, not even a footnote for this one? Just more buzzwords designed to anger up the Republican blood. Lawyers and leftists and ACORN, OH MY!! Let he who is without sin cast the first stone, Mike.

* He campaigned on "transparency" and "integrity" in government and then has nominated a rogue gallery of tax evaders, Washington bureaucrats, and lobbyists to run his Administration.

Yay! Mikey finally got one right! Except no one really gives a shit these days. Both Republicans and Democrats have conditioned us to look the other way when it comes to politicians and their foibles. Tax evasion, bribery, adultery, misogyny, pederasty… been there, done that and we really don't care anymore. I mean, I do, but I'm more concerned about you idiots lowering my taxes, fixing my streets and returning pride to the country in which I live. To paraphrase Katharine Hepburn, you can people your bed with sheep for all I care.

* Obama brazenly follows his chief of staff's maxim of "You never want a serious crisis to go to waste...This crisis provides the opportunity for us to do things that you could not do before" 4 to cripple our free markets with massive taxation and spending that wrests away our freedoms and puts even our great-grandchildren in debt.

Uh-huh. Not unlike using a national tragedy to invent a false conflict in order to invade a country which had nothing to do with the tragedy in the hopes of killing the guy that sent assassins after your daddy? Sound familiar Mikey? You can't give Rom Emanuel credit for a strategy invented by Karl Rove. Well, he didn't invent it, but he sure as hell turned it into an art form.

* And now, anyone who dares speak out against or challenge Obama's ultra-liberal agenda, such as the hundreds of thousands of patriots who attended last week's Tea Parties, should expect to be labeled "unhealthy" by this Adminstration. 5 Now, THAT is arrogance!

Again Mikey, sounds familiar… remember how anyone in disagreement with the Bush Regime was automatically labeled Un-American? As for the Tea-baggers being patriots, how so? These were not brave individuals protesting for their beliefs. They were basically actors hired and shepherded by groups run by the RNC and the two Dicks, Armey and Cheney. Don't try to tell me that a summer blockbuster is an independent art film, Mikey, I know the difference. Not only that, but you infer that Obama himself is calling the Tea-Baggers "unhealthy" when in fact it was a comment made by one of his many advisers, David Axelrod. Way to spin the facts, Mikey!

You know that Barack Obama's hubris and charisma conceal the inexperience and lack of wisdom that our country cannot afford in its president.

And though the teleprompter and mainstream media liberals may delay America's realization of the peril the Obama White House portends for our future for a while, the eventual failure of leftist policies and ineffective leadership will not.

So, you'd rather Obama look like an inept, marble-mouthed retard? Well, I suppose after eight years of Junior you've grown accustomed to that. Nice use of the word 'teleprompter' though! With that one word you imply that Obama is not smart enough to make a speech without one and also that the words he reads are not his own. Teleprompters have been around since the 1950's Mike, and before that there were cue cards. We all know that a politician can't make a speech without one these days, Democrat or Republican. I'm just thankful that Obama can use one without stumbling over the words every two sentences and continuously saying "uhhh… errrr…" like his predecessor.

We must be ready when that time comes.

Please help the Republican Party's effort to spread the word about the Democrats' arrogance of power and support GOP Members of Congress as they work to hold the Obama Democrats accountable to the American people, by making a contribution of $1,000, $500, $100, $50, or $25 to the Republican National Committee today.

Your gift will also help support the recruitment and election of principled candidates who will defeat the Democrats in 2009 and 2010 and lay the groundwork for ending Barack Obama's grip on power in 2012. Thank you.

And here we have the real heart of the matter. Greed. Rather than tout policy alternatives or invite people to a discussion on what can be done to fix the myriad of problems we face today, most created by the Republicans, all Mike really wants is our money. The RNC has destroyed the moral and financial fabric of the United States and still has the gall to ask us to feed the beast! Talk about fucking arrogance!


Michael Steele
Chairman, Republican National Committee

Sincerely? Please. You are the quintessential bum asking for a handout, promising to buy a meal but then heading straight to the liquor store. Sorry, but you can't have my money. Do you know how hard my mother works in order to scrape up enough cash to send me every month so I can live the High Life? You have a job, use your own money.

P.S. Michael, the RNC is working hard to hold back the Obama Democrats' damaging, arrogant power grab -- please take this opportunity right now to support our fight against ineffective leadership and failed legislation by making a secure online contribution of $1,000, $500, $100, $50, or $25 to the RNC today. Thank you.

OMG!! What did I just tell you Mike! Are you deaf or just plain stupid? No money for you, bad puppet!

1 "[A]rrogant." (President Barack Obama, Town Hall, Strasbourg, France, 4/3/09)

2"[T]he moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal." (Sen. Barack Obama, Remarks After The Democrat Primary, St. Paul, MN, 6/3/08)

3"[R]efused to let financial firms pay back taxpayer-funded bailout loans..." (Stuart Varney, "Obama Wants To Control The Banks," The Wall Street Journal, 4/4/09)

4"You never want a serious crisis to go to waste...This crisis provides the opportunity for us to do things that you could not do before." (Gerald F. Seib, "In Crisis, Opportunity For Obama," The Wall Street Journal, 11/21/08)

5"I think any time you have severe economic conditions there is always an element of disaffection that can mutate into something that's unhealthy," (David Axelrod, "Face the Nation" 4/19/09)

This is what passes for footnotes in the RNC these days. Out-of-context, vague quotes sliced thinner than chipped ham. And even though we live in the digital age, there are few actual links to click. The few that are there connect to Party Faithful sites which serve to further obfuscate the true context and meaning of the quotes. If this is the best that Michael Steele and the RNC can do, then the "extreme left-wing" really has nothing to worry about.

Unless stupid people vote.


Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April Ficks

Well, it's April Fool's Day here on Earth and the much dreaded quartet of Conficker virii are live and gnawing away at your Windows operating systems like a starving dog on a homeless man's leg. Or at least, they're supposed to be. By the way in case you're wondering, the name Conficker is reported to be a combination of 'configure' and the german 'fick' which means exactly what you think it does.

According to reports on CNN, the virii don't appear to be doing much damage anywhere, or if they are, no one seems to be noticing, however one member of the Conficker Cabal, a group of tech nerds dedicated to stopping the virii and tracking down it's author, some ten million computers have been infected by the insidious worm.

Conficker comes in four flavors dubbed A, B, C and amazingly, D. The virii take advantage of weak spots in the Windows OS and could possibly do one or more of the following: Reset and lockout users from account logins, disabling of Auto Updates and Error Reporting service, slowdown of domain services, LAN congestion, blocking of antivirus software and Windows update services. Guess you guys should have bought a Mac.

Now I know my readers are thinking that I'm making light of a serious situation here, but I'm not. Really. Conficker is such a terrible thing that multi-billion dollar corporate giant Microsoft has offered a $250,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the Conficker author(s). Wow. That's almost a lot of money. They must really almost want that guy caught.

I'd love to sit here and discuss how interseting it is that April 1st marks both the Conficker trigger date and the start of the G-20 summit, but I really need to start chasing down those Confickerers so I can get that reward money. And just so you know Mr Gates, I'm spending most of it on Mac supplies!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Fuck You And The Tax You Rode In On

Poor little uninsured children across the United States are about to become the recipients of one of the most massive tax increases in the history of this country. THe Federal Government is instituting a sixty-one cent tax on all cigarette packs sold in the US bringing the federal total to one dollar. The extra money is supposed to go to fund the SCHIP. Now, more than ever, people will have more incentive not to insure their children because they know someone else will be footing the bill for them.

Although the tax increase doesn't officially begin until April 1st, (how's that for an implementation date?) savvy retailers have already raised the prices of cancer sticks anywhere from fifty cents to a dollar. That's pure scumbag profit kids. That extra buck isn't going anywhere but in the retailers pockets and you're just forking it over like sheep.

But it doesn't end there. Manufacturers will be raising prices to offset the loss of revenue caused by the increased tax. Yeah, that makes good sense. By mid-summer we should all be paying an average of $7 per pack to feed our addiction. That is if we still continue to support the cancer merchants.

In Louisiana there is a contingent of politicians who know what's best for everyone and are attempting to add an additional eighty cent state tax to the mix which would push the per pack cost to well over eight dollars. Governor Bobby indal says he will veto the tax if it passes the legislature on the grounds that it will affect more poorer people and that's something he wishes to avoid during the Nation's current economic downturn.

Congratulations smoker haters! You have finally taken a huge step in eradicating tobacco from the general populace. You couldn't do it with your second-hand smoke studies, all of which have crumbled under close scrutiny. Finally you found something everyone loves: uninsured babies!! Please! Won't somebody think of the children! Have fun with that. Meanwhile as smokers either quit, or start buying their tobacco from tax-exempt indian reservations, your river of unconstitutional tax dollars will dwindle to a trickle. I can't wait to see the chaos in the future. Oh, and if you thought Black Market smokes were a problem in the past, wait a few months. You've just made cigarettes a worthwhile item for smugglers and the mob again.

As for me, I'm a smoker and if there's one thing I hate more than whiny anti-smokers it's whiny children. And if they're uninsured I hate them even more. Why the hell should I pay for your kids dip/tet? I can't afford my own fucking health insurance and you've got some nerve tapping my pocketbook to balance your shortcomings as a family provider. I'll be visiting the local reservation for my smokes from now on and the extra money I save will be going to whichever bar I happen to be near for my alcohol addiction. I hope there aren't any school zones in between the two!

Friday, March 20, 2009

What's The Point?

MSNBC has a live vote in progress on whether or not we should remove the motto 'In God We Trust' from our currency. You can vote here. All you Atheists better hurry, you're losing 86% to 14%.

MSNBC offers the choice of: "Yes. It's a violation of the principle of separation of church and state." or "No. The motto has historical and patriotic significance and does nothing to establish a state religion." Apparently, some people who don't believe in God, or believe in another God, don't want our money to mention him. Gosh, I wonder if there might be anything else on our money that might offend some people? Let's take a look and see!

Well on the dollar, there's a portrait of George Washington, the first President of the United States of America. Well, unless you count all the other presidents before him. Washington got the job in 1789 but the United States was actually formed as an entity in 1777 after the Articles of Confederation were ratified. Before George, the presidents of the Congress were Peyton Randolph, Henry Middleton and John Hancock, (Presidents of the Continental Congress as The United Colonies of America,) Hancock again, Henry Laurens, John Jay, Samuel Huntington, (Presidents of the Continental Congress United States of America,) Huntington again, Thomas McKean, John Hanson, Elias Boudinot, Thomas Mifflin, Richard Henry Lee, Hancock again, Nathaniel Gorham, Arthur St Clair and Cyrus Griffin, (all Presidents of the United States In Congress Assembled.) So technically, Washington was our 17th President. Perhaps we should put him on the Seventeen Dollar Bill.

You know, most of our bills have Presidents on them, Ben Franklin being the hundred dollar exception. He was in charge of the Treasury Department for a time. Maybe It's time to change that. We could put our current President on all the bills like some nations do, but I don't know if Barack would look good in green. Hmmm, how about celebrities? Oprah on the $1000, Tom Hanks on the $500, Paris Hilton on the $20, (you know, for the nose candy fans,) and Billy Barty on the One signifying it's the smallest denomination and it's significant rate of shrinkage.

What else is there? On the back is the Great Seal of the United States. Both sides. Think of the seal as a coin. On the front, or obverse, is the US Coat of Arms. That's the eagle clutching thirteen arrows and an olive branch containing thirteen leaves and olives. There are also thirteen stars above the eagles head. The thirteens all symbolize the original colonies, but you don't need me to tell you that. The eagles head is turned toward the olive branch and away from the arrows which, it has been said, represents our nations desire for peace but our willingness to fight. That's a beautiful representation of 200-year old values, but no longer appropriate since George Bush destroyed that message years ago by unlawfully invading another country with falsified 'evidence' that… sorry, I digress. Anyway, let's get rid of that part. Maybe we can sell ad space there! I bet Rupert Murdoch would shell out a fortune to put the FOX "News" logo there!

The other side of the seal is the thirteen tiered pyramid with the spooky eye watching you. That's the Eye of Providence, or God. Looks like you're gonna have to take that out too. Oh, and the words "Annuit Cœptis" which means 'He approves our undertakings.' The "He" there also means God, so I guess that's out too. Under the pyramid are the words "Novus Ordo Seclorum" meaning New Order of the Ages. Who cares. Dump the latin. We need something hip and trendy in that spot. I got it! A scratch off game! Leave the pyramid there and your dollar will be worth exactly one dollar, but you can take a chance and try to turn your one dollar into five, ten or twenty! Replace the Latin crapola with the words: "Deal, Or No Deal!" But beware, under the pyramid might be the actual forty-two cent value of the dollar!

As for the motto, 'In God We Trust,' we should replace it with multiple slogans. Why be pigeonholed with one boring motto? Think of the possibilities. Coke Adds Life! Who Watches The Watchmen? Don't Forget To Vote! Have A Nice Day! Tune In, Turn On, Drop Out! Let's make money FUN again!!

This entire debate stems from the mind of one goofball in Sacramento, CA, Michael Newdow, an atheist who has been trying, (and failing,) to erase every reference to God he comes across. So far, he has failed to remove God from the Pledge of Allegiance, US currency and coinage, and a North Carolina government building. Newdow claims that “The placement of ‘In God We Trust’ on the coins and currency was clearly done for religious purposes and to have religious effects.” Big deal. Does it make your life that horrible, Mikey? Here's an idea, get yourself an ATM card and use that instead of cash. You'll never, ever, have to see the motto! And you can stop bothering everyone else.

Now for you kids out there that believe the motto to be a "historic and patriotic" part of our nation's history. You're wrong. While references to the Almighty have been on our coins and currency in one form or another since 1864, It wasn't until 1955 that Congress required the motto to be emblazoned on all our money, both bill and coin. That was just a year after they crammed the Big Guy into the Pledge, by the way. It was a heady time and I guess we needed to remind everyone we weren't like those Godless Commies. Fifty years is a long time, but not quite the 200+ year tradition everyone thinks is accurate.

As for me? I say let the motto stay. It really isn't hurting anyone and how often do you ever notice it? And right now I have more faith in God than I do in the Federal Reserve, but that can change at any moment…

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Run Karen, Run!


Tuesday, March 3, 2009


The Republican Party's token answer to Barack Obama, Chairman Michael Steele, is working hard for the money. So hard for it, honey. Today, I received a desperation e-mail from Mr Steele pleading for money in order to help Minnesota senatorial candidate Norm Coleman continue his destruction of the electoral process.

You may remember last year when the race between Coleman and comedian/political commentarist/candidate Al Franken was so close that a recount was deemed necessary. Initially, Coleman was declared the vote leader by some 200+ votes, but in the recount, certain oddities switched the lead to Franken by a similar margin. At question are over 650 absentee ballots which the Minnesota Supreme Court says were properly rejected due to various reasons. If counted, the absentee ballots would bring Franken's lead down to just 49. Coleman's shysters are also attempting to recount some 150 ballots which were initially counted twice and reinstate another 133 ballots which were counted initially but now cannot be found. I wonder if they looked behind the sofa? I always lose stuff behind the sofa.

So Chairman Steele is out beating the electronic bushes trying to scare up a few dollars for Coleman's recount lawsuit. I suppose this is completely legal, but it just comes off as pathetic and sad. From Steele's letter:

As the former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland and candidate for the U.S. Senate, I’m no stranger to the gutter campaign tactics and shady legal maneuverings of the Left Wing. They don’t fight fair, and they’ll stop at nothing to consolidate the power they crave.

Wow. Strong words there, but it certainly sounds like the Bush Administration tactics used to keep the Republican Party in power over the last eight years. I can see why Mr Steele was chosen to carry the Republican Banner of fear-mongering and deception. He's good at it.

Later, Steele assures party members that had Norm Coleman been on the Hill, "…it would have been much more difficult for Obama and Reid to get the 60 votes they needed to pass their outrageous, pork-laden stimulus package." Nice try Mikey, but you're not even close. Coleman has always been a small cog and no amount of after-the-fact chest-feather puffering will make him the Republican savior. If it weren't for this recount debacle we would all be blissfully unaware of Norm Coleman's existence as we have been for most of his political career.

So, if any of you out there wish to further impede the electoral process, by all means send a small donation of up to $2300, (the legal maximum,) to the Republican Party and tell them you want to help the great state of Minnesota to remain unrepresented in the US Senate for another four to six months. After all, if the citizens of the remaining 49 states don't help out Norm Coleman financially, who the hell will?

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan

Closing Gitmo is an nice move. It's one of the campaign promises Barack Obama made and now must keep whether he wants to or not. Just where he'll disappear George Bush's pet terrorists is left to speculation. Freezing White House salaries? It's about time someone in government took responsibility and pulled their own belts a little tighter. And re-opening the crown of the Statue of Liberty? It's about damn time! Nothing defined the Bush Administration more than the closed and empty head of Lady Liberty.

Eric Holder's confirmation as Attorney General is a week late, but as soon as Holder promises Republicans that he won't come after them for their sins in the previous mis-administration he should be greenlighted.

But this "American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan" thing…

Are you fucking kidding me?

Let's set aside the fact that you're following George Bush's lead by throwing money at a problem and hoping it goes away. Let's set aside the fact that even the most conservative estimates are predicting the total cost to exceed two trillion dollars. (Trillion? Fuck, and here I sit wondering whether I should buy bread and cheese or pay the heating bill.)

Let's talk about timing.

Your own financial advisors and the Congressional Budget Office say that only one-third of that money can be spent by the end of 2010 meaning that the "immediate impact" of the plan should be felt somewhere around the start of the 2011 NFL season. Office of Management and Budget director Peter Orszag, former director of the CBO, says that the CBO has only analyzed forty percent of the plan but that seventy-five percent of the money will go directly into the economy in the first 18 months. that's good spin, kids! Do the math and you'll find that seventy-five percent of forty percent works out to just one-third of the proposed $800 billion.

I wonder which programs will get the money first: Medicaid ($87 billion), shiny new alternative energy government cars ($600 million), DTV conversion box coupons ($650 million), upgrading the National Computer Center for the Social Security Administration - anyone see Die Hard 4? ($400 million), Department of Defense research for "green" weapons systems ($350 million) (and that's just for research!), Census Bureau ($1 billion), and the list goes on.

Sure there's some great stuff in there like vocation training and work placement and medical and insurance compensation plans, but almost everything in this bill is geared to trickle down over the next three years. By that time we'll all be working second jobs at Wal•Mart just to pay off the enormous tax-debt created by this one bill. I'm all for "green" tech and nationwide broadband access, but this bill isn't the place for them.

Committee on Appropriations chairman Dave Obey warns us that without the passage of this bill unemployment could rise to twelve percent, but if the bill does pass it will only rise to eight or nine percent. And this is considered Recovery? Sure, in three years we'll be saving thirty percent on our light bill, but that's assuming we're still able to afford the rent. Good luck with that.

To read the bill for yourself, a PDF is available at

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Thank God That's Over With

Of course I refer to the interminable eight years of botched policies and mis-management from the George Bush administration. Also, the televised coverage of the Barack Obama inauguration which seemed to last almost as long.

I kept wondering if it was a costume event until I realized that the guy dressed like Mr Potter, the evil old wheelchair-bound spider from It's A Wonderful Life, was actually former vice-president Dick Cheney who is apparently being eaten inside-out by cancerous guilt. We reap what we sow, eh?

The Networks had something for everyone. FOX "News" had the always charming Sheppard Smith in-articulating events as they happened with great gusto. From not knowing which helicopter was which, or who rode in what limo, to completely missing the significance of the Yosemite Valley painting hanging in National Statuary Hall. (It's part of the Lincoln theme Shep. See, Lincoln signed the Yosemite Land Grant in order to protect the area. Obama is a big Lincoln fan. See the connection?)

FOX had discussion in great detail about what they referred to as "Obama's Financial Bailout Plan" and how it could make or break him. Interesting. Somehow they failed to remember that it was good ol' George Bush who crafted the 800 billion dollar bailout, the first half of which has disappeared into the pockets of his Wall Street cronies. Obama is simply the executor of the remainder of Bush's last great mistake. Nothing like blinders to help keep your spin on track, eh FOX?

ABC had some decent coverage with Charlie Gibson, (oh, sorry Charlie, it's Charles now since you no longer handle fluff pieces on GMA, right?) and Diane Sawyer taking turns doling out historical facts and trivial snippets. For the most part Gibson stuck to history and Sawyer handled the important things like dress designers and speculation on Michelle Obama's gift to Laura Bush. (It was a pen and journal set according to Gibson.) ABC also had incisive commentary by George Stephanopoulis on how George Bush kept in shape during his tenure as tyrant, only gaining a few pounds in the last eight years. Cool! News I needed to know!

And CBS had Katie Couric.

What really depressed me about the whole thing was that this was the most attended inaugural event in the history of the Presidency. Yeah, OK, I get it. We elected the nation's first black president. Well, half-black, anyway. So it's historical and one would expect a large turnout, but it made me realize that if Obama was white, no one would really give a damn. It would simply be another president taking the Oath of Office. Big deal, right? It made me realize how little the citizenry cares about politics in the first place. No wonder the country is in the shape it's in.

Fiscally, the events surrounding the inauguration cost an estimated 170 million dollars but don't worry kids, only a small part of that money came from your taxes. Most of it came from private donations made by Wall Street movers and shakers. You know, those guys that are currently getting bailed out by the Feds with your hard-earned… oops. Well, perhaps the Feds can recoup some of that with the DVD sales and rentals. As for the Street itself, it plunged over 330 points reportedly because Obama didn't mention anything about them in his first speech. Talk about needy! Hey, wait a minute… what the hell are you people doing trading on Inauguration Day anyway? Not only are you a bunch of whiny bums crying for government handouts, but you don't even bother to pay respect to the new president you're begging from? Classy, really classy.

Chief Justice John Roberts, a Bush appointee, made a minor faux pas as he garbled the Oath of Office. One wonders how many of the nut-jobs who claim Obama is not a citizen will now claim he's not actually president because he didn't take the "real" Oath of Office. Of course, that leads to speculation that Bush instructed his pet to mess it up intentionally, but surely that couldn't be, could it? No, of course not. Any plan like that would have to come from someone with a working brain and real power. Like Dick Cheney. My God, I love a good conspiracy theory! (Well, wonder no more! NBC's Brian Williams just made it official, the nut-jobs are already crying!

As for Obama, one of his first acts of office was to reach out to the Gulf Coast promising to honor the "broken promises" and insure we never again suffer through the "unconscionable ineptitude" of the former administration. (Oooh, burn!) This came in the form of a statement released on the White House website. He also issued orders to cease implementation of many of George Bush's 'Midnight Resoloutions.' You know, those sneaky little laws an outgoing president pushes through when he thinks no one's looking. According to reports, Georgie signed more of those than Billy Clinton, Ronnie Reagan and Daddy Bush combined. Nice try, Georgie, but apparently another failure to add to your scrapbook.

And speaking of the former administration, George and his lovely wife Laura jetted away to their ranch in Crawford, Texas, a place they have clearly missed in the last eight years. Counting vacations spent at Camp David and in Crawford, George and company only managed to get in about three years of rest. Out of eight. Talk about your cushy part-time jobs!

Well, I guess that's enough rambling for one day. Enjoy your retirement George, you certainly earned it. And to the new president, Barack Obama, congratulations! You have a difficult job ahead of you, unraveling the twisted knot of incompetence left behind by your predecessor. No pressure though!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Here We Go Again

Anyone remember Hurricane Katrina? Anyone remember how quickly New Orleans recovered? Thank the heavens we all learned our lessons so that will never happen again! Or did we? Hurricane Ike struck the Texas Gulf Coast on 9/13/08. For a look at the recovery process you can visit the Flickr stream of darlamw, a Galveston resident who has been documenting everything from the Ike's approach to it's aftermath. The similarities to parts of New Orleans are striking.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Help Holy Cross

The Holy Cross neighborhood in New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward is still struggling to recover from Hurricane Katrina. You can follow their progress at, a blog dealing with all aspects of the neighborhood from arts and culture, civic meetings, rebuilding and remediation, and business and politics. Stop by and visit if you're interested in how a community can work together to rise above adversity.