Friday, March 27, 2009

A bunch of unrelated stuff

First, let me repeat again my admiration for Rachel Maddow's show on MSNBC. I love it that she can have Zbigniew Brzezinski on and be his intellectual equal. Zbigniew Brzezinski is no lightweight. She is charming and gracious to all her guests, whether they agree with her or not. Such a nice contrast to the shouters and asshats on other programs.
Did I mention that she is smart?

In other news: comics and the people who comment on comics.
There are a few comic strips I follow because I need a laugh once in a while, or a thoughtful comment even. is one of those places where people who read the comics can comment on what they read. On the one hand, this boggles my mind. People are so hungry to make a mark in the world they have to comment on the day's comics? This is especially pitiful when you see that people are commenting on decades-old reprints (is that the correct term when we are speaking of the internet?) of Calvin. On the other hand, I find myself actually looking, however briefly, at the comments on one particular strip.
I read a comic called Pibgorn,, about a fairy, the winged kind, and an eight hundred year old succubus and an ex-Episcopalian organist. It's not your usual comic strip concept.
There is a coterie of rabid fans who constantly comment on the drawings, the convoluted plots, and the hotness of the succubus (and she is indeed, smoking.) Every day they are there. And creating a community of sorts around this comic strip. And I ask—WTF is wrong with these people, don't they have a life? I mean, comparing insights in a comic strip?
This is not the only place this happens. Indeed, you almost cannot go anywhere where your opinion is not solicited for whatever your internet site is showing. What do you think of this ad, this video, this song, etc.
Please tell me this is not "Democracy in action."

The hell of all this is, that in the case of Pibgorn, at least, I find myself actually reading the comments! God help me, I am being sucked into this mess. This mess where your opinion ostensibly matters to someone else than yourself. To some other asshat on the other side of an electronic divide.

I eschew most of this supposedly interactive computer relationship, though I do belong to a Macintosh computer forum. But of course, Mac computers (and iPods and iPhones) are IMPORTANT, they are not like comic strips or news items or whatever.

Do you ever find yourself annoyed or delighted by something said by someone you never met or expect to meet, who has been contributing to the forum you belong to; do you find yourself responding to their posts as if they were a relative or friend in the room with you? If so, you're screwed. You need a life with real people in it. Turn off the computer and go look, already.

I had more, but I'm getting tired. It's hell getting older, you just can't bring up (pardon the expression) the same level of distaste and condemnation you could as a younger person. And if you can, you find you don't have enough energy to really care.

The world is going to hell and has always been going to hell, it's just that we don't see it because we are too busy trying to make money or make people do what we want or trying to get laid.

Are you ready to commit suicide yet?
Have a good night's sleep. You'll feel better in the morning.

I do what I can to make the world a better place.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Bonuses and condoms

I hear some Repubicans are defending the AIG bonuses. Or at least saying they shouldn't be taxed. I mean, those guys worked their butts off for that meltdown, they should get something, right?

Actually, I think all opprobrium possible should be heaped on those characters until they give the bonuses back out of shame and sell their houses and slink off to Mytushiefroze, Alaska, where they will live out their lives in obscurity skinning moose for Governor Palin. Now I am all in favor of taxing the rich—everybody should pay proportionately— but I feel little strange about using tax law as a punitive weapon. Something seems fishy about that. Besides, all these senators are only making a lot of noise in this room, metaphorically speaking, so no one will notice the mess they left in the other room. My cat does that.

In other news, Pope Benedict has said that condoms don't help prevent AIDS, they actually help spread it. Will someone please check that guy's medication dosages? Now being against condom use is part of the papal job description, but it's one thing to be against it because your belief is that sex is only for procreation, not fun, and something else entirely to be spreading lies about it. We expect this sort of thing from our wacko right, but they are stupid. One would think that the spiritual leader of over a billion people would have more on the ball.

I know what the problem is—lack of sex. It messes up the mind. Imagine two thousand years of priests and nuns going without sex (ostensibly) because of what may be a totally erroneous assumption about Jesus. There's no mention that Jesus got laid in the bible, ergo he didn't get laid, goes the thinking. Did they ever think that maybe he was too much of a gentleman to brag about it?

If I remember correctly, of the three vows of priesthood, poverty, obedience and chastity, chastity is the one renewable vow. There's a reason for that.
I'm done for the night.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Ah, everyone is in a fine dither about the AIG (that's pronounced "Aaaaiigghh!) bonuses for the very same wingnuts who brought the company to its knees.

"Joe, you oversaw the division that insured the uninsurable and turned the company into a financial Chernobyl. Great job! Couldn't have done better myself. Here take a few mil, just as a symbol of our appreciation.
Don't spend it all in one place. Heh, heh."

Makes sense to me. Man, if I'd have gotten bonuses for all my eff-ups over the years, I'd be on easy street.

The explanation from Edward M. Liddy, latest CEO, (wonder if he's any relation to G. Gordon Liddy who ran the "plumbers" operatives who burgled the Watergate?) said it was in the contract and is necessary for "employee retention."
Retention bonuses.
Sounds kind of anal, doesn't it?
Maybe they should get more fiber in their diets.

Best part, I heard on the Rachel Maddow show, is that eleven of the wingnuts got their "retention bonus" and left the company. Those bonuses really work.
My guess is that they were escaping rather than just leaving.
They all should have gotten pink slips instead of green checks.

Of course, considering the size of the bonuses compared to the size of the bailout money we've given (yeah, we—you and me) AIG, that amount is small potatoes.
All those Congressmen who are bitching seem to forget that there was an amendment in that stimulus bill which would have prevented this. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. said that he and Sen. Snow of Maine had put one in, but it somehow disappeared by the time the bill was voted on.
Gee, how'd that happen?

So a lot of this is a distraction. Aggravating, but it's just scratching the itch while ignoring the melanoma.
Instead of spending so much time on this, Congress should be working on ways to make sure the vast bulk of the money is being used the way it was supposed to be used. They should be exercising our owners' rights, since we now own the bulk of the company.
(I still want to borrow my corporate jet to fly down to Puerto Rico for my daughter's wedding.)

Congress could also be examining its own soul to see how it contributed to this problem. But hell, I'm not going to wait for that.

In one of his few bonehead moves so far, Obama, or his minions—same thing— was suggesting that soldiers with health insurance should use that instead of depending on the VA.
"Lost your leg in Iraq? Blue cross will take care of you. All you need to do is come up with the 5 grand deductible."
Even a conscientious objector like me knows that if you send a guy out to fight for you and possibly die or get maimed in the process, then you owe him something. Something like all the medical care he needs. I believe I saw somewhere today that that doofus idea has been dropped.

I'm running out of rancor. Gottagive up the brandy, it makes me too mellow.
Good night all (or rather, both of you.)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Still on that elevator to hell

Don't these things ever go up?

Latest Republican fantasy: the initiative to allow employees to unionize by signing a "sure i want to" card is an indication of the coming apocalypse and a denial of democratic principles. In that order. Watch for the rapture. I hope these guys get bugled up to Jesus (see, i didn't say they should go to hell) so that we can have a decent life here on earth. And I want one of their cars. A BMW preferably. And that time-share in Cozumel.
They are foursquare against what they say is an undemocratic way to organize: that is, without a secret ballot. They ignore the fact that a secret ballot still remains as an alternative. But when has the Republican minority ever bothered with facts when lies will suffice?
I was a supervisor at a wallpaper factory for a while in my past life and when there was a union move to get our employees into a union we management types were all called together and given the ways to counter the union message. I listened to the crap but basically did nothing to implement it. I had been a punch-the-clocker myself. The place i worked was pretty fair to employees but still, you never know what's coming down the road. There are people who make a living helping companies fight unionization. Republicans hate unions. Unions take profits away from contributors to Republican election efforts.
You know a man by his enemies, I've heard it said. Look at the enemies of unions and a lot will become clear to you.
So Obama has a stimulus bill. Spends a lot of money doing a lot of stuff. Of course the Republicans are against it. They don't care if it's good or not, they are just against anything a Democratic President produces. Obama's bill isn't perfect, but what is? It's addressing a lot of problems. The Repubs are still nattering on about tax cuts (for the wealthy—their main contributors) and more of the same old. these guys complaining about spending are the same wingnuts who voted for every appropriation George Bush asked for, especially any money for his ill-advised war in Iraq.
But now they have seen the fiscal light. Like Saul of Tarsus, they have been struck down by the power of the Lord and now repent their profligate ways.
Unfortunately, unlike Saul of Tarsus, they haven't really turned to the good. They have turned to the "keep the money in your benefactor's hands or else" way of thought.
And they aren't anywhere near as articulate. Have you heard Mitch McConnell speak? Is anyone (other than George Bush) more pathetic? Well, alright, there's Bobby Jindal. It's hard to sound reasonable and articulate when what you are saying is so contrary to fact.

Okay, I've had my fun dumping on the Re-pubic-ans.

It's bedtime, and both of you reading this should be in bed.
Good night.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Economic elevator going down, next stop—Hell

I am discovering the lazy blogger's punishment. There is so much going on, I don't know where to start. Financial apocalypse, Obama administration initiatives, unemployment increases, the Oscars. But since a lot of the activity is revolving around the Republican's struggles, we can sum that up in one sentence. "They are idiots."
But of course I can't leave it at that. Such complete intellectual implosion almost demands attention. It's like slowing down on the highway to look at an accident. You hate to look, you know it's meretricious and macabre, but something in you just has to force you to look.
How does my mind boggle over you (Republicans)?
Let me count the ways:
  1. Michael Steele. Where does one start? He must have a third foot, because he can still walk with one in his mouth. The government never created a job—presumably not even the gov't. job he held in the State of Maryland. That was delivered perhaps, from heaven by God. Not by the actions of government.
    Then there his attempt to bring hip-hop and rap to the Republican party. This is so , so, improbable—I just can't come up with a word that would accurately represent this action. Mr. Steele himself does not bring the term "rap" or the term "hip- hop" to mind on seeing him. He is not cool.
    I come from the generation immediately after the beatniks, the hippie generation, and I know from cool. Mr. Steele is not cool, he is not hip, he certainly is not "gangsta."
    Let's not leave out his criticism of and then his capitulation to, Rush Limbaugh.
  2. Which brings us to—Rush Limbaugh. or is that Rush Limburger? Anyway you spell it he smells. Mr. Limburger says he hopes Pres. Obama "fails." What a patriot. He'd rather America suffers through Obama's failure than that it recovers through his success.
    God forbid that Conservative principles should be proved false by actual real world situations.
  3. The party of "No." Conservative principles again. Although this may be a real perversion of the word "principles" What kind of "principles" leads a governor to turn down money that would help the people of his state because it comes from a Democratic President's initiative? Especially because the idea is that the unemployment benefits part would be turned down but the other parts accepted? Well, this is, at least, consistent with the Republican refusal to believe any of the lower classes deserve help of any kind. God knows, some miscreant out there might abuse the system, get some benefits he doesn't deserve. They aren't like the honest, upstanding members of our financial community, like Mr. Madoff (made off with your money) and Mr. Stanford, the Ponzi scheme specialists.

    To their credit, the legislature of Mississippi has passed a law requiring their gov to accept the money he was threatening to turn down. So I heard.

    It's too much. Some of us (that going up to 10% unemployment bunch) are trying to make ends meet, worrying about health insurance, mortgages, whether or not we're going to have to eat the pets, and the Republicans are worrying about doctrinal purity.
    Go eff yourselves.

    That's all. God help America.

    Coming up: Stimulation (oh, baby!) Watch for it.