Monday, September 29, 2008

HOLY SHIT: Dow Crash and Bailout Fails

The Dow Jones declines by over 777 points, largest single day loss in history. Meanwhile, Congressional Republican Caucus rejects bi-partisan bailout ("Rescue Plan"), blaming Nancy Pelosi because her speech was "too partisan".

I call BULLSHIT on the lying liars, playing politics with Americans life savings, as-fucking-usual.

There is a great video floating around showing clips of Repub's justification and Barney Frank's response, I'll see if I can find it and get it posted.

UPDATE: Here it is. Enjoy.


Sunday, September 28, 2008

Shella Knows Best: How the Bailout Can Best Help People

Perhaps we can accomplish with the Bailout, that which would never otherwise be accomplished in current American history. Namely, a major investment in the affordable and accessible housing stock.

I present to you, Shella's 10-Point Bailout Plan, in the form of a letter to Barack Obama.

Dear Senator Obama:

I think I have an idea of how your administration can work the bailout to help needy Americans, while being honorable to the new taxpaying owners of defaulted mortgage loans:

1. American taxpayers purchase single-family and multi-family properties presently in default – and are issued a bond-like instrument for the value of their investment including some amount (yet to be defined) of interest per annum;

2. Purchase price to taxpayers is “short-sale” at current market value only (not including accrued and aggragatge missed payments, interest and fees, closing costs, points, property maintenance costs, etc.);

3. In exchange for being bailed out, institutions agree to accept and make a one-time write-off of the dollar amount (gap) between the gross mortgage default figure and the taxpayer short-sale amount. Then it's all rosey for wallstreet again.

4. The feds create a state-by-state portfolio of housing units including protectorates;

5. Each housing unit, at the time of purchase, is deed-restricted to be affordable and accessible housing in perpetuity;

6. Each state applies to the feds to become responsible for the disposition of the affordable and accessible housing according to their state housing plans, further providing a clear and concise oversight and reporting plan;

7. Each county applies to the state for the affordable and accessible units within the cities and unincorporated areas in accordance with their state-approved consolidated plans and housing elements;

8. Local nonprofit housers and housing authorities then apply to each county with a plan for the responsible and reasonable operation, repair, maintenance, and management of one or more housing units for the needy or underserved populations already-identified in their jurisdiction's approved housing element;

9. Local nonprofit housers and housing authorities agree to refinance the housing unit/s under their control at some point before a 15-year term, the then-current market rate being returned to the feds to pay the bonds presented to them by bearers having received same at the time of the bailout investment.

10. Financial institutions or other entities receiving taxpayer bailout accrue Community Reinvestment Act obligations, those credits may be used to perform accessibility modifications or other critical repairs and maintenance which may be necessary for the housing units taxpayers have been forced to invest in.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Spiders on Drugs

Gotta love those Canadians...

Friday, September 26, 2008

They Eat Their Own: Palin

Cafferty and Blitzer

Live Blogging the Debate: First Obama-McCain

5:30PM: There are about 30-minutes until the much-anticipated Obama-McCain debate. I hope I find myself shifting between ecstatic glee in watching Obama wipe the floor with McCain and (the usual, which is) screaming obsenities at the screen refuting the pathetic (but frusterating) talking points (lies) which spew forth from McCain like so much filth.

9:05 PM: Oh. My. God. I've just been in a fight. And the crochety old fuck McCain was so dismissive and paternalistic I could scream. And I HATE paternalistic old conservative men.

This is my take: This debate did not change anyone's mind.

Republicans (ideologues) must be thrilled that McCain's Alzheimer's did not leave him a babbling about pablum, however, he was completely disrespectful.

Democrats (patriots) are thrilled by Obama's competency and evident intellegence, however, he was too fucking polite. He should have NAILED McCain. Never again should he say "John is right" - my prediction is that it will haunt him to his grave;

For people who are undecided - I can't say. McCain will continue the philosophies of Bush. If you're sick of having a stupid, incompetent, fucking Republican administration, with a shallow President - you'll vote for change.

Economic Clusterfu*k

Leave it to Comedy Central to give us a side-by-side of Bush bald-faced lying to Americans about the Iraq War and the $700 Billion Bailout:

Given that the entire dollar value of defaulted mortgage debt in the US is $111 Billion - why precisely does the Bu$hCo Cabal want Americans to give them $700 Billion?

Do the Dems realize they're bending over voluntarily to get fucked by the Repub's one last time before the criminals leave office AND RECEIVE PARDONS?

And below, more analysis of McCain's utter ineptitude:

Monday, September 22, 2008

George Carlin: Love Him, Miss Him

George Carlin was my very favorite comic because he was smart. The skit below is a couple years old, and prophetic.

The below skit is my absolute favorite. I really love George Carlin, and I miss him.

And, below is George Carlin on war.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

How I feel: Another Stream of Consciousness Rant

I've been busy since Friday with family and kiddo stuff. It's kept me away from the TV. I've been off the computer.

Last thing I remember from Friday is that we'd had a couple horrifying days on Wall Street, but the markets had rebounded with the taxpayer purchase of AIG (and Lehman, and Freddie, and Fannie...). There was the Bu$hCo Cabal telling everyone that all's well. Fundatmentals still intact. Crisis averted ("pay no attention to that man behind the curtain... ")

Then, the next thing I know is I sit down early Sunday evening, turn on the TV and computer, and the fucking sky is falling. Bush Administration's criminals are in flames about how taxpayers HAVE to buy all the worthless debt from greedy companies to the tune of $700 BILLION (!!!). And the flip side of that little crisis is that the corporations get to keep the “good” investments so they can turn around and pay more dividends to shareholders!

And by the way, they're demanding action to authorize the spending in DAYS.

What the fuck? Are you kidding me? The Bu$hCo Cabal runs America, its economy and the world economy into the ground for 8 long years – and 40-something days before the election we've got to save the world by giving you $700 Billion ASAP!?!

What a scam!

The Administration officials who are now (again) scaring America, and taxpayers, and media, and the House and Senate.... well... those officials are liars. Worse, they're incompetent liars. They're incompetent in every thing, and they've lied about everything. Why are we believing them now? Haven't we learned?

I am really disgusted by some elements of the Bush/Paulson “Plan”. I am insanely pissed off that the people (and our money, earned at 1, 2 and 3 jobs) are going to get these lying liars out of trouble – and especially since we've been treated like SHIT and completely HARMED by the guys for so many years.

I am utterly skeptical that they're suddenly competent to make even the most minor of recommendations regarding the economy or anything else.

And I don't trust them. And I am pissed. And I don't understand their about-face. And I don't understand how we could have gotten to the point where we can't even take the time to get educated and make sure we're not getting gamed by the Bu$hCo Cabal one last time before Obama is elected.

I feel like they're taking one last stab at enriching corporations, and they're simultaneously ensuring that the Obama Presidency is a poisoned presidency.

Lastly I cannot, for the ever-loving life of me, understand how most Republicans can still support Bush and McCain. It's got to be some form of psychological self-preservation. There's no other explanation how a reasonable human being can continue to be blind to the utter destruction wrought during these dark years.

Dear Democrats: Vet this situation as though the future of the world rests your decision. And don't fear holding off until Obama is elected. After 8 years we can wait a couple more months, don't you think? There's a reason they want to rush things through and I don't think it's to help the regular folks.

There's a great diary over at DailyKos that has more details about Bush's plan. One excerpt from that post...

".... here is the truly offensive section of an overreaching piece of legislation:

Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.

This puts the Treasury's actions beyond the rule of law. This is a financial coup d'etat, .... Given the truly appalling track record of this Administration in its outsourcing, this is not an idle worry."

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

McCain: The Most Reprehensible of the Keating Five

I have chosen to reprint in whole an article by columnist Tom Fitzpatrick, first published November 29, 1989 in the Phoenix New Times Newspaper. One of the interesting things about this article is that it is written so personally. Mr. Fitzpatrick writes as though speaking directly to McCain's face.

McCain: The Most Reprehensible of the Keating Five
The story of "the Keating Five" has become a scandal rivaling Teapot Dome and Watergate

You're John McCain, a fallen hero who wanted to become president so desperately that you sold yourself to Charlie Keating, the wealthy con man who bears such an incredible resemblance to The Joker.

Obviously, Keating thought you could make it to the White House, too.

He poured $112,000 into your political campaigns. He became your friend. He threw fund raisers in your honor. He even made a sweet shopping-center investment deal for your wife, Cindy. Your father-in-law, Jim Hensley, was cut in on the deal, too.

Nothing was too good for you. Why not? Keating saw you as a prime investment that would pay off in the future.

So he flew you and your family around the country in his private jets. Time after time, he put you up for serene, private vacations at his vast, palatial spa in the Bahamas. All of this was so grand. You were protected from what Thomas Hardy refers to as "the maddening crowd." It was almost as though you were already staying at a presidential retreat.

Like the old song, that now seems "Long ago and far away."

Since Keating's collapse, you find yourself doing obscene things to save yourself from the Senate Ethics Committee's investigation. As a matter of course, you engage in backbiting behavior that will turn you into an outcast in the Senate if you do survive.

They say that if you put five lobsters into a pot and give them a chance to escape, none will be able to do so before you light the fire. Each time a lobster tries to climb over the top, his fellow lobsters will pull him back down. It is the way of lobsters and threatened United States senators.

And, of course, that's the way it is with the Keating Five. You are all battling to save your own hides. So you, McCain, leak to reporters about who did Keating's bidding in pressuring federal regulators to change the rules for Lincoln Savings and Loan.

When the reporters fail to print your tips quickly enough--as in the case of your tip on Michigan Senator Donald Riegle--you call them back and remind them how important it is to get that information in the newspapers.

The story of "the Keating Five" has become a scandal rivaling Teapot Dome and Watergate. The outcome will be decided, not in a courtroom, but probably on national television.

Those who survive will be the sociopaths who can tell a lie with the most sincere, straight face. You are especially adept at this.

Last Friday night, on The John McLaughlin Show, which features well-known Washington journalists, the subject of the Keating Five was discussed. Panelist Jack Germond suggested that three of the Keating Five were probably already through in politics.

So you spend your days desperately trying to make sure you will be one of the survivors. You keep volunteering to go on radio and television stations to protest your innocence. Last week you made ABC's Nightline.

Not long before that you somehow managed to get James Kilpatrick, the national columnist, to write a favorable paragraph about you. Last Sunday morning, you made it to national television again; this time on ABC's This Week With David Brinkley. You smiled at the panel with your usual studied insouciance. Sitting next to you was Senator John Glenn of Ohio.

Brinkley, Sam Donaldson, and George Will were the interrogators.

It was a sobering scene. There you sat with Glenn, both sweating before the cameras, waiting to answer questions: two badly tarnished American icons.

No one forgets that Glenn was the first American astronaut to orbit the Earth. You won't let anyone forget that you were a prisoner of war. But you have played that tune too long. By now your constant reminders about your war record make you seem like a modern version of Arthur Miller's tragic failure Willy Loman.

Clearly, both you and Glenn sold your fame for Charles Keating's money.

It was a Faustian bargain. It was also a bad joke on the rest of us and a disaster for many old people who lost their life's savings to Keating.

The money was never really Keating's to give. But he never would have got his hands on it if you and the rest of the Keating Five didn't halt the government takeover for two long years while Keating's people continued their looting.

And now, the tab for the Savings and Loan heist must be paid from taxpayer pockets.

On Sunday, Senators Dennis DeConcini, Alan Cranston, and Riegle refused offers to appear on the Brinkley show. What must we make of that?

You, the closest of them to Keating and the deepest in his debt, have chosen the path of the hard sell. You may even make it out of the pot, but to many, your protestations of innocence taste like gall.

You are determined to bluff your way. You will stick to your story that you were acting to help a constituent and intended to do nothing improper. The very fact you attended the meeting makes you guilty, just as every man who entered the Brinks vault went to prison.

You insist that an accounting firm Keating hired told you Lincoln was sound. Alan Greenspan, who Keating also hired, wrote a report saying it was sound. Why shouldn't you believe the people Keating hired? You were, after all, fellow employees.

Perhaps you might silence your own conscience about all this someday.

Just keep telling everyone that it was your wife's money invested in that shopping center with Keating and that you knew nothing about it.

Keep saying that cynical newspaper people don't understand that every move you make has always been for the enrichment of Arizona . . . the education of our Native Americans on the reservations . . . for the love of the elderly in Sun City and Green Valley.

Keep telling them that it wasn't that you were bought off but that Charlie Keating got special help only because he was one of the biggest employers in the state.

Just keep sitting there and staring into the camera and denying that Keating bought you for money and jet plane trips and vacations.

So what if he gave you $112,000? Just keep smiling at the cameras and saying you did nothing wrong.

Maybe the voters will understand you took those tiring trips to Charlie's place in the Bahamas in their behalf. Certainly, they can understand you wanted to take your family along. A senator deserves to travel on private jets, removed from the awful crush of public transportation.

You sought out a master criminal like Keating and became his friend. Now you've discarded him. It shouldn't be surprising that you are now in the process of selling out your senatorial accomplices.

You're John McCain, clearly the guiltiest, most culpable and reprehensible of the Keating Five. But you know the power of television and you realize this is the only way you can possibly save your political career.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I Shoulda' Taken A Pic....


Today at the local farmer's market I spied a tomato. It was a beautiful tomato. I shall call it "The Tomato."

The Tomato was an heirloom tomato of historic pedigree to be sure. The Tomato was a vine-ripened and succulent specimen, squat, broad, oddly shaped, an unlikely beauty the likes of which has escaped me so far 'lo these many years.

The Tomato called to me. I reached into the wooden crate... I hesitated. Should I pick it up? Could I? Were my intentions honorable? Or, was my more base appetite rearing its ugly head again?

I held it. The amazing weight of The Tomato in my hand, all I could envision was its taste. I absolutely needed to eat The Tomato. It was over one pound, and it was going to be my dinner. The sole course, as it were. I purchased the object of my desire.

As few people know, there is nothing quite so delicious as a sun-warmed, vine-ripened tomato. I brought it home. I washed it lovingly. I dried it (even more lovinginly). I placed it upon the cutting board. I hesitated as I raised my knife...

The first cut was the deepest. One entire lobe, now separated from the body. Red inside - so much ripe flesh and not too much juice.

I raised it to my lips... I opened my mouth... wait. I need wine. One simply CANNOT partake without a very full glass of Two-Buck Chuck. And a napkin.

Okay. I am ready. I raise The Tomato to my lips. I open my mouth, the flesh firm between my teeth. I take a bite.

WOW. Bite, after bite, after bite (damn this thing is big!) Another lobe surgically separated from the body of the beast. The Tomato is the most amazing tomato I have yet tasted. A gastronimic marvel. A gift from the Gods. A veritable, well, dinner.

That's all. I shoulda' taken a pic lest you think me deceptive.


Sunday, September 14, 2008

SNL Skit: Palin and Clinton

Amy Poehler and Tina Fey have just created a classic Saturday Night Live skit. This one will live on. Enjoy!

(correction 9/17: Thanks Feng xoxo)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

I Don't Know Why I Post This, But I do.

I have been too pressed today. I wanted to post something snarky and piercing. Instead, I post below three paragraphs from a New York Post article by Rich Lowry.

Palin's choice to give birth to Trig after she learned of his condition 13 weeks into her pregnancy endeared her to pro-lifers and contributed to the frenzied excitement among social conservatives about her selection. The national stage she's now been given means her choice could have much wider significance and constitute an enormous symbolic leap ahead for children with Down syndrome and their parents.

As many as an estimated nine out of 10 children with Down syndrome are aborted in the womb, sought out by increasingly sophisticated prenatal tests and eliminated as too flawed, too burdensome, too different to live. This is the ugly eugenic underbelly of American life, even as we congratulate ourselves on our tolerance and diversity.

Parents of children with Down syndrome routinely encounter a "how could you?" disapproval. Former Washington Post reporter Patricia E. Bauer writes that strangers consider her daughter with Down syndrome as falling "into the category of avoidable human suffering. At best, a tragic mistake. At worst, a living embodiment of the pro-life movement. Less than human. A drain on society. That someone I love is regarded that way is unspeakably painful to me."


Thursday, September 11, 2008

SCARED SHITLESS: She Is, And We Should Be

It's almost painful watching Sarah Palin try to fake it. A train wreck, really. And boy does she look scared. She should be.

Like Matt Damon says, she is so fucking unqualified that the fact that it's gone this far (77 days before the election and she has any credibility in any quarter) is too surreal to be believed.

Bare Bear vs. Crustacean Porn

Six of one, half a dozen to the other... However, with Palin and McCain it's the hipocracy that counts.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Hilarity Ensues...


They're trying to sell you on "Small Town Values", but they don't even know what that is. American Republicans are the most ignorant and gullible fucking people alive.


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Self-Inflicted Torture: Oh My God - Watching Palin

It's heinous. I've been SCREAMING at the TV since she came on. Waving flag graphic in the background and all.

I wasn't aware, until now, that I am capable of refuting every single point she attempted to make. I am quite tempted to create a sentence-by-sentence refutation of her speech.

It's so wonderful seeing a baby with Downs on stage. They've finally given up having the eldest (pregnant) daughter Bristol from holding baby Trig in front of her stomach. Now dad is finally holding s youngest child.

Fucking McCain has such a weird look on his face, and Palin has a sour expression as well. Not very friendly. SOMETHING IS UP. FUCKING HELL, SOMETHING IS UP!

Okay, you've heard it here first - something is up between these two. My radar has picked up something and I don't know what it is. Luckily I'll be able to review the video footage later and give you guys a glimps as well.

I survived the torture of watching the lies and screaming the truth to the TV.


PS - Tell George Stephenopolous to shut the fuck up. SHUT THE FUCK YOU (you turn-coat)

Friday, Three Hours Before Palin Announcement

You simply cannot make this shit up. See arch-conservatives Pat Buchanan and Joe Scarborough laughing about how insane it would be for McCain to pick Palin!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

RNC: My Initial Thoughts

I am watching Fred Thompson's speech.

How very interesting. The only person of color I can see in the entire audience is McCain's adopted daughter.

How very, very interesting. It appears that Repubs just LOVE a good war story. Lot's of guts, lots of "gory".

Another observation: Below is some text from Thompson's speech...

"...Expecting him to die, his captors placed him in a cell with two other POWs who also expected him to die. But with their help, John McCain fought on. He persevered.

So then they put him in solitary confinement...for over two years. Isolation ... incredible heat beating on a tin roof. A light bulb in his cell burning 24 hours a day.

Boarded-up cell windows blocking any breath of fresh air. The oppressive heat causing boils the size of baseballs under his arms. The outside world limited to what he could see through a crack in a door.

The guards cracked ribs, broke teeth off at the gums. They cinched a rope around his arms and painfully drew his shoulders back.

Over four days, every two to three hours, the beatings resumed. During one especially fierce beating, he fell, again breaking his arm.

John was beaten for communicating with other prisoners. He was beaten for NOT communicating with so-called "peace delegations." He was beaten for not giving information during interrogations.

What strikes me most is this: According to the Bush/Cheney administration's definition of torture - McCain was not tortured.

What the Bush/Cheney Administration says is:

What investigators say is:

Olbermann and Turley discussion about Bush gutting the Geneva Convention: