Saturday, December 4, 2010

Legacyland

In case anyone was wondering, how's life in Iraq?  Oh, it's about the same as it has been since the Shrub shocked and awed them.   Sectarians keep on exacerbating their tensions.  How much did we pay for the Shrub's legacy.  I bet it would cover Medicare for all for a couple of decades.   Why would any sane person ever vote for a Republican?

Series of Bombings Kill 15 in Baghdad

Palin Alert

Sarah Palin won't be able to pursue Polar Bears anymore, they received a modicum of protection last month.  This pissed off the Palin, she was ready for blood.  That meant she had to have a more intense seal pup hunt this spring.  Damn, the seal slaughter may have to be canceled too--

Listing as 'threatened' sought for arctic seals

What's a hungry Mama Grizzly to do?  Well, there's always her young....

It's back to deadlock time

With the election over, it's time to start thinking about reelection in 2012.  As both parties pursue what they know is paramount to all, getting reelected, other matters that matter are already so much bullshit.  What's more important, actually doing something about 9.5% unemployment or securing cash and votes for 2012?  It's obvious, job  number one has nothing to do with 9.5%,  hold it, it's gone up since I started this post.  It has nothing to do with 9.8% unemployment.

Jobless rate jumps to 9.8% as hiring slows in November

Remember job number one is getting elected and reelected.  And we keep on helping them out.  Yep, batshit is a staple in the national diet.

Good News --More Ways for the Rich to Get Richer

As we all well know, Bob Lincoln told us that government is of, by and for those who can buy it!  The Supremes pretty much removed any nefarious do-gooder limits on buying Congressmen and Presidents.  Money is free speech.  This past election we saw the new and improved purchasing power speak loudly.  Big money bought a very Republican House.  What will happen in 2102?  Well, I'd bet my 1st Amendment,  that the rich will buy a GOP Senate and another house,  a white one, to ensure their continued enrichment and protect their freedom to speak.

It's nice that the powers that be, have helped the Super Rich do even more, they've developed SUPER PACS.  They beat the hell out of soapboxes in the park.

72 super PACs spent $83.7 million on election, financial disclosure reports show

Feeling screwed? Well, remember, you have the one thing all that money is trying to buy--a vote.  I don't think most of us use our votes all that well.  Hell, a minority of possible voters determines the winner and we call that majority rule.  After an election we hear the victors say "the people have spoken!"  We know   most of the people did not vote they went out for pizza instead.   "The people have eaten" would probably be more a more accurate post election summary.  The national belfry is full of batshit.

Cyberwar

We know one of the combatants. no not Iran, it's Wikileaks.  They are the ones who published those cables that, at best, confirmed what most folks already knew.  The "classified" documents embarrassed people who work for us--they are our government.  Our people have huffed and puffed over this round of leaks.  I bet they fear the next round will be close to home--Congress or the White House.  Now we see a war's on.

Wikileaks has been hit with a large debilitating denial of service attack.  It's coming at them from a lot of places.  That can shut a server down.  Wikileaks has multiple servers and has withstood the attack.  Who's behind the distributed attack?  No one knows, but  if I had to guess, it would be out of some office run by a bumbling putz in the White House.   How's the war going?

Well, Wilkileaks has remained up until being delisted by a DNS service.  Yep, you'll get  a 404 if you look for wilkikeaks.org.  I wonder about EveryDNS.net's defense of their action--"it threatened everybody"--that sounds like government inspired bullshit.  Has this taken wikileaks down?  No, try the other URLs.

U.S. domain name service boots WikiLeaks after series of attacks on site

If a war is on, over a breakdown in government CYA, then it might become interesting. All the government appears to be doing is trying to censor the web in the name of national security of course.  If true, it reminds me of what was SOP in the Soviet Union.   Does anyone have a definition of National Security, with loads of operational metrics? If this is a war, what will our government do if other folks take wikileaks side and those hackers are better at cyberwar than the bumblers in high office? Better break out the old Sci-Fi books in the government/cyberwar genre and see what was predicted.

Friday, December 3, 2010

What can they really do?

The military has problems.  We've seen they don't equip troops until adverse publicity shames them into giving them what they need.   Lacking armor, troops more easily moved from being able bodied cannon fodder to just mangled.  The military does not quite know what to do if they cannot fix the troops and restore them to able bodied status.  Walter Reed and the VA seem to always be beset with problems.  Recently, we've seen that the military has even had problems running a cemetery.  The change in status from active duty to dead also seems to be beyond the ken of generals.  If you thought the burial errors at Arlington were over, you are wrong.

Remains of 8 people found in 1 Arlington grave

Given all the problems with doing the war thing, what can all those stars actually do right?  Note how long we have been at war in Afghanistan and Iraq.  In both cases it's stalemate.

I'm puzzled

If the astrophysics crowd now says "my bad, we missed a lot of stars when we last inventoried the universe," what does this do to dark matter?  I don't know how much mass has been found, but if it is a nice big bunch, then bless my Zwicky, who needs dark matter when baryonic matter, we can kind of sense, will suffice?  Am I smelling phlogiston(Nah, it's just fun to say that)?

How Many Stars? Three Times as Many as We Thought, Report Says

Shadow Biosphere

What's is life?  Life is what we have found that we will call life.  If our senses confirm that  all living things  must have a set of characteristics, then we confirm something is living when we find those characteristics.  Of course if ask the question a bit differently we may then find a surprising set of new facts in response.  A researcher did, she found a type life that lives without phosphorous.  Is there an arsenic based life form?  Is there another biosphere?   What else is out there all around us that we just have not been looking for because we didn't frame better questions?   What will we find next?

Bacteria stir debate about 'shadow biosphere'

Bless My Missing Public Option, The Republicans Failed On This

What?  The mighty Dems actually passed a bill that does some good?  Impossible!  It's the Child Nutrition Bill, it's on it's way to what's his name in the White House.  Gee, the Dems can feed kids, but couldn't pass a decent health care bill, couldn't re-regulate finance stronger than it had been before they gutted Glass-Steagel, couldn't even think about setting federal usury limits.  I guess there wasn't a child nutrition industry complex in need of contracts in the way of the bill.  At any rate, the GOP will have to cope with better fed, stronger children as we go into the future.  These kids will be strong enough to bear the load of government on their backs, unless the GOP decides to provide malnourishment when they take power in the House.

Funny how the GOP will put us in the poor house fighting two totally wasted, useless wars and try to prevent school lunches for poor kids.   I think it's an embarrassment that we even need to provide lunches.  Why don't most people have decent jobs?  The money is out there for jobs, it's just not available, it's been seized by the rich who invest in debt.  What does it say about us?

House votes to send child nutrition bill to President Obama

Gaypocalypse

DADT News via John Stewart


The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Gaypocalypse Now
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorThe Daily Show on Facebook



Faux news seems to provide better coverage than CNN, FOX and MSNBC, does it?

Thursday, December 2, 2010

House Can't Follow C-Span's Schedule

So much for the noonish "Trial of the Rangel."  Everyone who did the C-Span at work toggle, had to wait until 4 EDT this afternoon.  I guess the West Coast crowd were close enough to the lunch hour for a bit of public interest on their own time, everyone else toggled in and out on the company dime.

Chuck E. Rangel was censured.  I have a feeling, had the Dems not made such a big deal about draining the swamp a couple years back,  then Chuck would not have censured.  If the Dems had not been so ethically proud and boastful, then Rangel would only have been told "we'll chalk it up Al Heimers Chuck, just quit being a dumb shit."  No censure, reprimand or nothing.   When you live by raising a prideful stink, you may have to be hoist on your own stink.   Oh, what happened to Chuck?  He just had stand there and be told "you is censured dude."  

I think what really hurts is knowing this was done by peers--who have not been caught yet.

Christmas come early

If you are unemployed, have been for weeks and weeks, and still own a sock, then take it off.  Now hang it on whatever you can.  Santa, a jolly old Republican will deliver your lump of coal early this year.  Don't burn it all at once, it's all you're going to get for the rest of your days.  Make it last and bask in the warmth of knowing though you are unemployed and broke, your government is not on your back.  You will not be part of any federal overreach until you have to apply for Medicaid since you cannot pay your health insurance premiums.    

Unemployment checks to 2 million will stop without action

The Economy

This round of long term unemployment is the worst since WWII.  It's not going to improve any time soon.  It could, but note that our best and brightest spend their time dreaming up new ways to securitize debt and life insurance policies.  They make a lot of money, but more and more folks will be on the bread line until they begin investing in making stuff.  Making stuff makes jobs, collateralized debt obligations don't.

High jobless rate streak could break '80s record

C-Span At Work Alert

Warm up your Tubes, get a couple of apps running and tune into C-Span about noon today.  Then you can toggle in and out of the series finale of  "Trial of the Rangel."  Will the Chuck E. Rangel be censured or will he be reprimanded?  This type of House drama does not happen too often, even though it should occur more frequently given the underwhelming integrity of the typical House members.

House votes Thursday on Rangel censure

Child Nutrition

1.  Republicans have blocked legislation to feed school meals to thousands more hungry children

2. Republicans say the nutrition bill is too costly and an example of government overreach.

3. Republican know that childhood poverty and hunger arise from irresponsible voluntary behavior.  Children could have chosen better parents and could get jobs and work after school.

4. Republicans are compassionate.  They do not want government on the backs of hungry children. In their malnourished state, they might be injured.

5. You cannot argue with GOP logic, all you can do is vote it out of existence.

Republicans block child nutrition bill

Pols Propose Plans to Attack What They Spent Us Into

More deficit battle chatter will come out way today and into the foreseeable near future.   Today's gambit is to huff, puff, and act,  but save your reelection ass.  How do they accomplish such a task?  Well, deflect attention from the real growth of government and keep it on a very traditional, but smaller source of spending.  Yep, if you are a member of the federal civil service, be prepared to bend over, a lot.  However if you are on the pad, a contractor, get your wages from the feds but are not in the civil service, you'll be taken out to lunch.   Hell, those shadow government employees might even get a raise.  See, contractors employers donate campaign cash and civil servants can only vote.

Federal workforce would share deficit-reduction pain in various ways

Bold Move Front

ObamaCo has reversed itself on drilling in areas of the Ocean.  Are they serial reversers?  They were all for it, it brought in 2012 reelection cash.  Then BP screwed up.  ObamaCo placed a hold on drilling.  As BP's mess became a major mess.  Voters began to realize ObamaCo can't manage a cat litter box.  The money dried up.  BP did put a cork in it's hole in the seabed, ObamaCo kept banning new holes.  Then as ObamaCo appeared ready to allow new holes in the deep, they noticed voters.  Their base had kind of left them.  Ouch, Dems have to vote for him or all that cash will be spent for naught.  Yep, Dems, especially the Progs and Libs, like clean water and tidy beaches.  Therefore, ban drilling, bring back the base, and look for new sources of cash (Goldmans?).

Administration reverses offshore drilling policy in eastern gulf, Atlantic

What shall we do?

The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers. While that's a decent everyday idea, we may want to redirect our ire after reading this--

Health premiums surge 41%; Md., D.C. among costliest areas to insure

Yeah, the first thing we do, let's kill all the health insurance company CEOs and board members.

What do you bet it will get worse? The real beneficiary of the Democratic Health Insurance Reform Act is the health insurance industry. Gee, I think I'll go visit Opensecrets.org and see what pols are owned by the Health Insurance Industry Complex.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Who can tell whom what to do?

Can a court tell a state's executive to release 40,000 prisoners because their continued incarceration is tantamount to cruel and inhumane treatment?  If the Gov. of California complies and 40,000 cons hit the streets will there be a "crime wave?"  If crime goes up could the Gov. be sued?  Could the judge who ordered the release be tired as a conspirator in all those crimes committed by the freed felons?  Hmm, lots to think about here.  What is cruel anyway?  Who has been sent to the joint for what? It's really a mess out there in the national fruitcake factory.  A fruitcake has been delivered to the Supremes.   What song will Roberts and the Robes deliver on this leg of the Releasing the Kagan tour?

Supreme Court: Can judges tell California to release 40,000 prisoners?

If you lie with certain dogs, it might Wikileak on you

It's incredible, Blackwater, now Xe, took a flyer on becoming pirate hunters.  Pirate hunters?  It didn't get much approval from ObamaCo.  However, that has not deterred Mercs R Us.  If they cannot kill pirates, then they can kill Afghanis.

Xe turned to the intrepid spooks at Langley.  The CIA cannot protect themselves.  They must not trust the Army.  So they hire Xe to protect their butts in Afghanistan.  Does this give you a warm all under feeling about the CIA?  About Mercs?  Wow, the CIA was bad pre-Xe, but now we know they really are just mercenary bumblers who happen to work and torture for us.   Does the CIA make you feel safe?  Now about pirates....  

Blackwater Aimed to Hunt Pirates

Suggestion

If you want to live, quit eating meat, poultry and eggs.   The new food law (if passed and signed) will make spinach and other veggies safer, but it will protect the  e. coli producers rather than the consumers.  Let the Agriculture Industry members, who buy Congressmen, know you want regulation.  Don't write Congress that is futile, no, instead just quit buying meat, poultry and eggs.   Along the way drop the CEOs a line and tell them--no strict regulation, then strictly, no sales.

Food safety bill: Spinach gets new oversight, but not beef

It's all a matter of priorities

We have lots of unemployed people.  Many have been out of work for a very long time.  So long now, their unemployment benefits will run out.  What, they'll run out?  The worlds greatest debilitative body did it again--it did not pass extension of unemployment benefits.  So, kiss off any kind of Christmas for the long term jobless.  Now, that's a real nice present from the Republicans.

The Republican Senators, such as Mitch McConnell and Jim Bunning are just very concerned about the possible indebtedness of unborn grand children.  In that spirit, they have opposed extending a smattering of money for the very, very, jobless.  Hell, at this rate, they won't have to worry about the unborn grandkids any more.  There won't be any.  Those kids won't be conceived as their potential parents will have starved to death because they had no money for food.  That is compassionate conservatism in action!  It's all a matter of priorities.

Congress fails to extend jobless benefits, hitting 21,000 Kentuckians

Choking on gnats while swallowing really large Camels

What's the gnat?  Oh, federal employees salaries.  Why are we choking?  It's simple, they get paid in tax dollars.  We're spending more tax dollars than we take in, we're running a deficit.  So, to cut the deficit we will cut the wages federal employees.  See how easy it is to choke on a gnat while we continue to borrow about $1 trillion a year.  I'm fairly sure the about 2,900,000 (at most) federal civilian employees wages do not add up to $1trillion, if they do, then every damn one of them is making over $250,000 a year.

The camel is the huge budget and even huger deficit.  We've been getting obese on camel roasts for years.  I guess deficits are like safety.  We feel better if something is done, even if the something really does nothing.  I'm thinking TSA and safe air travel, what value do they add other than an emotional balm?  In a similar vein, freeze, cut, and reduce federal wages.  That won't do shit about the deficit or budget, but we'll feel better at the next meal.  Could you pass the mint sauce, it goes quite well with haunch of camel.

Deficit panel sharpening its scissors on federal pay


How much do we spend on what, for what reasons and with what effect?  If we have to axe something that has a modest degree of heft,  I volunteer the Department of Education.

It's Only 20 Years Old

The web, our beloved Internets Tubes, has only been with us for 20 years. It's hard to remember pre-web life. How did it all begin? What has it done?  What is the future?  Can you imagine being able to write this about yourself--

The world wide web went live, on my physical desktop in Geneva, Switzerland, in December 1990. It consisted of one Web site and one browser, which happened to be on the same computer. The simple setup demonstrated a profound concept: that any person could share information with anyone else, anywhere.


Here's the rest of Tim Berners-Lee's piece:

Long Live the Web: A Call for Continued Open Standards and Neutrality

DADT

The military's report is out.  There are no changes from the earlier leak.  70% see no problem with ending DADT.  The other 30% do not want it repealed.  I have been trying to figure out why folks do not want DADT repealed.  I know it's fear based, it's a sexual fear.  I have a feeling the opponents do not want gays in the service because they are sure that gays will behave towards them in the same ways that they themselves have always treated women.  Being treated as "meat" scares the shit out of the opponents.

Voices of the troops from the 'don't ask, don't tell' report

If we cannot have a new war, then what?

We cannot afford to open a new war front in Iran even with all the support we'd have.  The Wikileaks cables sort of indicate every nation except North Korea despises Iran.   I guess Iran and N. Korea are bound by a solidarity of  evil weasels.  The cables do provide a bit, a smattering, a touch and an iota of   stuff that could indicate we need to begin building a defensive missile ring around the Iranians.

Those pesky Persians may, might, possibly, or could have some mid-range Korean missiles or missile kits.  I wonder, if they built giant catapults could they lob kit parts on downtown Dusseldorf?  Could they level Leeds?  That might be scary or bothersome.  I have to admit when I read the headline associated with this piece, the first thought I had was "missile gap," then in a second thought I wondered if we have ever found those WMDs.

Over the years I've concluded that senior spooks, senior striped pants suits, way over valued but beloved pols, and senior DoD warrior wannabes and hasbeens all own a lot of Military Industrial Complex stocks.

Experts question North Korea-Iran missile link from WikiLeaks document release

End of Hurricane Season

It's always wonderful to leave the hurricane season, especially if there were none to be remembered.   This year was uneventful in Virginia.  Of course, the season was blown out this year.  Yep, last night was high winds, severe thunderstorms, and tornado watches.  It almost seemed like a hurricane blew threw about 4:00am this morning.    

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Presidential Bold Move

President Obama put on his camo gear and attacked the nation's deficit yesterday.  He unilaterally and boldly froze federal employee's pay!  Nary a paycheck was left unaffected.  This act of bravery will reduce the deficit by at least 5 one thousandths this year.   Was he being rash?  Will this action cost him reelection in 2012?  We really do have problems in Washington, and we keep reelecting them to office from both parties.

Amid Deficit Fears, Obama Freezes Pay

Pleae take note

GOOPERs love to trash all that bailout cash we spent under TARP.  Throughout last Summer and Fall they told us how we wasted $700 billion on Wall Street.  I guess $700 billion was excessive if all it did was stabilize the banking system, avert a crash far worse than 1929, and keep unemployment at 10% rather than beyond 23%.

Yep $700 billion to keep life more normal than not bothers the batshit crazy folks--they think about all those unborn grandkids that might have to pay the bill.  Oh, note, TARP's cost will actually be $25 billion.  Wow, the GOP has been off by $675 billion.  Amazing?  Not really, they make shit up every day.  I bet it bothers them to see Bush and then Obama get a lot of bailout done for very few tax dollars.  Since most of the work was done in the current administration, the business types might have to say that ObamaCo has been quite efficient and damned productive in finance and business matters.

TARP expected to cost U.S. only $25 billion, CBO says

Will it matter at all?

The military's "Don't Ask,Don't Tell" report officially comes out  today.  We already know what it concludes.  Most troops--70%?-- are not opposed to the open service of gays.  Will the report matter?  Unfortunately, it won't as long as old farts like McCain feel the need to pander to religious homophobes (GOP voters) it won't matter.  McBigot and his cronies will have to die off and be replaced by a younger crowd.  As that occurs and voters quit electing bigots then we will be rid of DADT.  Until then, all we can do is fight the hate one bigot at a time.

'Don't ask, don't tell' report set for release

How many?

Okay it's 2010, we've added some employees, maybe a few hundred thousand, post-Census 2010 temps.  As we head into GOP bullshit land, the 112th Congress listen to the numbers they toss out.  When you hear a number go find it yourself.  I'm hearing the twits toss around employment numbers.  Do not trust a pol.

One thing to note in the graph below is how remarkably flat federal civilian employment has been.  Hmm, if the number of employees has been about the same and the amount of money spent has gone up, aren't the employees more efficient at spending it--it takes fewer per billion to get the job done.  Of course the real growth in government has been in the states.  Gee, I wonder why pols rail at the feds and not their home districts?

Here's the page this graph was taken from:  Government Employment


Worth a read

Richard Cohen's piece in today's Post--

WikiLeaks provides the truth Bush obscured

Monday, November 29, 2010

2012 GOP Theme?

When the GOP finally gets going and decides to go after Obama with something other than birth certificates, Islam, and socialism what will it be?  What will they tell us that Obama says "No" to?  Ready?  Here 'tis  Obama says "No," to American exceptionalism.  This might become the main theme for 2012.

American exceptionalism: an old idea and a new political battle

It's bullshit but it appeals to GOOPERS.

How would you deal with the deficit?

Setting aside Medicare and Social Security for this post, what would you cut? How much of what we, our government, spend is for tangible stuff like pencils or paper towels?  How much really goes to pay the  salaries and dividends to employees and stockholders of companies on contract to do what probably ought to be done by government employees?  Remember Al Gore?  He's the guy who reinvented government.  How'd he make government smaller?  He reduced the number of government employees by increasing the number of contractors (they are not accounted for as employees).  Al ran a shell game that has only gotten worse.

When you propose a cut here and slash there, how many incomes of non-government employees will be affected.   How many people really work for the Feds?  Think about it a bit and I have a feeling you will come to see cutting the deficit and balancing the budget are not easy tasks, since lots of voters will have their ox gored.  Oh, I'd gore the rich--incomes over $500,000 a year.  Most of them have been making money by investing in debt and have not produced anything tangible at all.  

Don't listen to me, here's David Stockman on GPS

Here's the solution to war

All we have to do to end war is keep Tricare premiums unchanged into the future.  Eventually the health insurance costs for military retirees will become so expensive that it's all that will remain in the Defense Department.   Wouldn't it be a lot easier on all of us if just ended war today and decided to have Tricare for everybody?  I know, dream on.  It's kind of pleasantly perverse to see health insurance as a source for war's end.

Gates Seeking to Contain Military Health Costs

Tempest in a striped suit

It's cablegate time.  Yes, it's Wikileaks and it's loaded with candid assessments by state department hacks and others of their various counterparts hackishness around the globe.  What, lies and duplicity are being exposed?  No one imagined any of the content?  Bless my classified Pentagon Papers!  Heavens  the world will end, or at least the sky will fall.   I have a feeling the pols protestations and demands for prosecution of Wikileaks are expressions of fear at the next possible round--WikiLeaks on Congress, WikiLeaks on USA, Inc., etc.

Here's the Post on Wikileaks--WikiLeaks's unveiling of secret State Department cables exposes U.S. diplomacy

Here's the NYT onWikileaks--Cables Obtained by WikiLeaks Shine Light Into Secret Diplomatic Channels

After reading these pieces is there anything that shocked you? Anything you didn't really already know about? What's most disturbing about these leaks?  What's that line, live by the sword, die by the sword,  okay, what's the counterpart to swords for the foggy bottom crowd?

Sunday, November 28, 2010

As goes the end of the 111th, so will the 112th

If you think there will be some bi-partisanship in the lame duck session, you can go have ice cream and cake with the only other person who keeps thinking it's just around the corridor.  Who's that?  Oh, what's his name, the guy with a funny name we elected to run USA, Inc. for four years.  Gridlock here we come!

The GOOPERS with keep on saying "no."  They won't take power until January, 2011.  The Jackasses will practice braying "no."  The Dems will become the minority party and will then adopt every GOOPER position expressed over the last two years.  The Dems have a patron saint in Nancy Reagan, they will "just say no," for two years or more depending on what happens in 2012.

Lame-duck Congress facing gridlock on core issues

Bullshit Alert

Wikileaks is back for round three.  They have leaked on Iraq.  They have leaked on Afghanistan.  In both cases our government types gnashed their teeth, rent their garments, and huffed and puffed that doom would follow as streets around the world would run with innocent blood.  Uh, all that's happened is they needed to see their dentist, buy new clothes, and take lots of Valium, geez.

Oh, my, Wikileaks is back for round three.  This time they are going to leak on diplomats.  Cue the government types--gnash, rent, huff.  Okay.  We're going to learn that diplomats from country A despise diplomats from country B.  Wow!  We're going to learn that government officials in country C think government officials in country D are all douchebags.  Superwow!  We might even learn that some people in the State Department do not think too highly of folks in the White House and that both are so tired of Congressmen.  GollyGeeGomer!

U.S. officials: New WikiLeaks release will do most harm yet


I wonder if any of these schmucks every heard of transparency and telling the truth in the first place?

Food

As I read more and more about how so much of our food is produced, I become more and more disgusted with all of us.  Today, as we have been doing for decades, we're hell bent on killing off forms of sea life just because they are tasty to someone.  I guess sharks aren't all that yummy so they get agreement to check killing them off.  However, the bluefin tuna gets shafted again since there are lots of folks in Japan that will pay oodles of cash for a slab of fish.  Maybe we all ought to become vegetarians for a while. The planet and all it's fish and other animals need a break from us.  I used to have a lot of fun dissing tofu.  No more, unless the joke is too good to pass by.  Tofu can be quite tasty.     Eat more tofu and pass on the fish and meat.

Atlantic Ocean sharks get new protections

Good News Can Be Made Better News

In Legacyland there is some good news--

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said Saturday that an agreement requiring U.S. troops to leave by the end of 2011 will stand because Iraqi forces are capable of taking care of the country's security.

Let's make it better news and leave the Shrub's legacy today.   What do you bet we never quite leave Iraq? There's so much money involved that once you've been on the Federal pad, you can never go back to private sector employment.  We may get 95% of the troops out, but we'll be paying for the equivalent of 50,000 troops for decades.  Our presence in Iraq has and never did have anything to do with our safety or our freedom.   Let's give Malaki a Christmas gift of one SOFA delivered one year early.

If we quit spending all tax dollars in Iraq, we'd have a nice start on making the deficit smaller.

Two Ways to Look At It

Mexico is top source for U.S meth is one way, the other is U.S. is top source of drug customers.  Isn't it about time to stop all the drug war nonsense.  If people want to do drugs, let them as long they don't commit other crimes along the way.  At times I have the feeling ending the drug war is impossible because the folks fighting the war would be unemployed and the raw materials used by drug cartels are quite profitable.

If we have large segments of our population who choose drug addiction, let them do so.  As an add on, I'd legalize suicide too, since that is about what we do with these days with drugs--it just takes a bit longer, but the end result is about the same.  

Retirement

If you are looking at retirement sometime further on in the future, you may wonder what was the defined benefit thing folks used to have and why will your Social Security suck?  A lot has changed and even more will change over the coming twenty or thirty years.  Basically, until the average voter quits sucking up to the folks who make most of the money, it will deteriorate beyond their expectations.  How'd we start to fall apart?  Oh, thank Congress, they created the 401(k).  We elect 'em.  They tell us to bend over.  We thank 'em.  We reelect 'em and wonder why our butts are so sore.

Good reasons to be uneasy about retirement security

Congressional Shilling for the Rich

Who does that?  Why good old Eric Cantor does that.  When he slings his BS to justify tax cuts for the rich, then I figure he's a wholly owned thrall of "Richer Than God, Inc."  Do the tax cuts and small business have a relationship?  Well, yes, but it's not quite what Shill Cantor declaimed, it's barely true and moving towards pants on fire--

Eric Cantor says expiration of Bush tax cuts will raise small business taxes

Government Employee Wages

Over the run up to the election, the Trogs and Teabags had a great deal of fear mongering fun at the expense of government employees--they are grossly over paid, have enormous benefits and are wrecking the economy.  Sadly, very few pundits questioned the bullshit.  How are your  state employees doing?  Perhaps this article is a starting point for folks to ponder and then relentlessly question the words of the shills for the rich (the GOP).

State workers' salaries lag private pay