Who Hijacked Our Country

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Another Sputnik Moment for America

Energy Secretary Steven Chu has compared China’s recent surge with the Russian satellite of 1957, saying this should be a wakeup call for American innovation. Sputnik inspired America to compete with Russia by entering the space race.

Fifty-odd years later, China is light years ahead of the U.S. in computer technology, renewable energy development and mass transit. China not only has high-speed rail, which the U.S. lacks; they also have the world’s first maglev (magnetic levitation) transportation system.

Maybe someday the United States will rub its eyes, look around dazedly and notice that other countries have joined the 21st century and we haven’t. Will the land of collapsing bridges and dumbed-down schools ever compete again?

Hmmm... things don’t look hopeful, do they.

And now for this week’s cover story from DUUUHHH Magazine: Cut-off of jobless aid would lower economic growth.

Ya think? It’s too bad such simple two-plus-two logic needs to be spelled out for millions of people. (See “dumbed-down schools” above.)

If Congress lets unemployment benefits expire, economic growth could fall by one percentage point; there could be up to a million additional job losses. This is because (yes, you already know this) jobless/low-income people spend every cent they have, which stimulates the economy and creates jobs.

But try telling that to Republican politicians and their simple-minded followers.

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Monday, November 29, 2010

John Boehner: “The American People Demand an End to All Abortions”

Everything John Boehner says or does is “a mandate” from “The American People.” It probably won’t be any different with his newest fling — Randall Terry, America’s favorite fetus-worshipper and the founder of Operation Rescue.

Randall Terry is now part of Boehner’s Inner Circle, along with banking and insurance lobbyists. So much for that “limited government” that conservatives are always blubbering about.

When Randall Terry met with Boehner and his staff, he demanded that the GOP:

“…hasten the end of legalized child killing in America. Unless the Republicans do something concrete to save babies from murder, then they are collaborators with child killers, and we must treat them as such. We have Pro-Life DEMANDS for Mr. Boehner and the House GOP. We Must Play Hard Ball: They Must Fear Pro-Lifers!”

Or what??? Uh oh, maybe the “Ban All Abortion!” wackjobs will form a third party.

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Sunday, November 28, 2010

WikiLeaks: Terrorism???

Congressman Peter King (R—Tinfoil Hat) has asked Hillary Clinton and Eric Holder to declare WikiLeaks a foreign terrorist organization. This would make the WikiLeaks founder a terrorist ringleader.

Lindsey Graham and Liz Cheney have also jumped on the bandwagon.

Either these “leaders” are too dense to tell the difference between “national security” and just plain embarrassment, or they think the public can’t tell the difference. The Nixon Administration yelped “National Security!” when Daniel Ellsberg embarrassed them with The Pentagon Papers. The more things change…

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Friday, November 26, 2010

Nancy Pelosi: “Friends Don’t Let Friends Bend Over”

Nancy Pelosi (D—Vertebrate) thinks some of her fellow Democrats — including Obama — have been doing too much bending, stooping and cheek-spreading, in the desperate hope that Republicans will quit stealing their lunch money and tripping them in the cafeteria. How’s this strategy working out for them? It’s a good thing the Democrats have done so much compromising and appeasing; otherwise Congress would be completely polarized. Rightwing talking heads would be saying terrible things about Obama and congressional Democrats.

Thank God that hasn’t happened.

Rep. Lynn Woolsey said Pelosi will lead Democrats in:

“…pulling on the president's shirttails to make sure that he doesn't move from center-right to far-right. We think if he'd done less compromising in the last two years, there's a good chance we'd have had a jobs bill that would have created real jobs, and then we wouldn't even be worrying about having lost elections.”

Congress still hasn’t acted on the Bush tax cuts. Pelosi wants to be sure Obama doesn’t bend over and “compromise” by making the tax cuts permanent for millionaires. Rep. Elijah Cummings said:

“Pelosi can provide that balance with the White House. Democrats want to make sure that they've got somebody at the table with the president, looking him eye-to-eye and saying basically, 'You've got some people who have been very, very loyal to you — not just progressives but moderates, too — and they truly believe that that's not the right thing to do.’”

He also said Pelosi might enable Obama to play the Good Cop to Pelosi’s Bad Cop:

“In his negotiations with the Republicans, Obama needs to be able to say, 'Look, you say you're not going to compromise, but I've got Nancy Pelosi over here who is very passionate about these issues, and I have to listen to what she's saying.’”

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Party of No Says “NO” to High Speed Rail

The newly elected congressional teabaggers are creaming all over themselves in their frenzy to delete funding for job creation and infrastructure projects. Their top priority: yanking away $2 billion (it was part of that commie stimulus package) from California’s high speed rail project. Job creation and mass transit — the two things Republicans hate most.

It’s part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Rescission Act, introduced last week by Rep. Jerry Lewis (R—Troglodyte). This bill would return $12 billion — the amount of the federal stimulus that hasn’t been spent yet — to the treasury. And this includes $2 billion that California’s high speed rail project — the first in the country — depends on.

Who cares about some sissy mass transit project when there are billionaires out there who need another tax cut. Those whiny liberals just don’t get it. Learjet payments, vacation homes, yacht club dues — the rich are suffering too.

The United States is still the only industrialized country in the world that doesn’t have a high speed rail system, and the Reactionary Party wants to keep it that way.

The U.S. does have what they call a high speed train that runs between Boston and Washington, D.C. But technically the train isn’t fast enough to qualify as high speed rail.

This article has a list of all the countries that have a high speed rail system. Turkey, of all countries, has high speed rail and we don’t.

And speaking of clean energy and rightwing cluelessness: Rush Limbaugh threw a tantrum because Motor Trend Magazine named the Chevrolet Volt the “Car of the Year.”

Bloatfuck said:

“Of all the cars in the world, the Chevrolet Volt is the Car of the Year? Motor Trend magazine, that’s the end of them. How in the world do they have any credibility? Not one has been sold, and the Volt is the Car of the Year.”

Earth to OxyContin: The reason nobody has purchased a Chevy Volt is — the Volt is not on sale yet.


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Monday, November 22, 2010

Obamacare: The Enslavement Continues

Freedom died last spring when Obama’s health care reform bill was signed into law. And it continues to die in slow incremental painful gasps. Freedom-loving insurance companies can no longer deny medical coverage because of a pre-existing condition. They’re not allowed to discontinue coverage after a claimant has the nerve to get sick. And they can’t establish lifetime or annual limits on how much medical care those whiny patients are entitled to.

Isn’t this enough??? What will be the next cherished liberty to be stolen from The American People?!?!?

Here it is: There's a new requirement on how insurance companies can spend the money they collect in premiums. They have to spend eighty percent of this money on medical care. Not on seminars and meetings held in plush resorts; not on 7-figure bonuses. They have to actually spend 80% of this money on the medical needs of their policyholders when they get sick.

This regulation will take effect in January. It’s hard to tell how the Right will spin this, but they’ll find a way. Count on it. Get ready for a shitload of new corporate-funded “grass roots” front groups staging orchestrated “demonstrations.” Coming to a city near you.

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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Jon Kyl: “I’d Burn the American Flag Just to Humiliate Obama”

Senator Jon Kyl (R—Treason) would rather jeopardize national and global security than vote to ratify a nuclear arms treaty that Obama is pushing for. According to one analysis, Iran and North Korea are the only two countries in the world that would NOT benefit from the New START agreement. Maybe Jon Kyl should buy a one-way ticket to one of those countries.

If the United States wants to put international pressure on Iran, we need Russia’s cooperation. Only a rightwing Republican could simultaneously: A) be scared shitless of Iran, and B) aid and abet Iran by rejecting the New START agreement.

In addition to Obama, this agreement is backed by James A. Baker, Colin Powell, William Perry, Madeleine Albright, Bill Cohen and Henry Kissinger, among others.

It’s also backed by Secretary of Defense Robert Gates. Gates lashed out at the retarded inbred Neanderthals (not his exact wording) who are blocking the treaty. Cooperation from Russia on international issues, funding for modernizing America’s nuclear weapons, the ability to inspect Russia’s nuclear programs — all up in smoke if this treaty isn’t ratified.

But that’s OK. Republicans will just say it was Obama’s fault, and millions of gullible voters will believe them.

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Fair Game

As soon as this movie is out on DVD, it’s going to the top of my NetFlix queue.

Fair Game is based on Valerie Plame’s memoir: “Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House.” The movie stars Naomi Watts as Valerie Plame and Sean Penn as her husband, Joseph Wilson.

(Naomi Watts and Sean Penn also starred in the very bleak depressing “The Assassination of Richard Nixon,” which is possibly Sean Penn’s most brilliant performance, IMHO.)

But anyway, Fair Game: You probably know the background. Joseph Wilson, a former ambassador, wrote a New York Times op-ed column that totally debunked President Dumbya’s Big Lie that Saddam Hussein was trying to obtain enriched yellow-cake uranium.

The Bush Administration retaliated against Joseph Wilson. They “leaked” information revealing that Wilson’s wife, Valerie Plame, was a CIA agent. Robert Novak dutifully printed this information in his column, thereby jeopardizing Valerie Plame's life and America's national security.

It’s gotta be a heckuva movie. Scooter Libby, Ari Fleischer and Karl Rove are all there; I haven’t heard of the actors who play them.

Funny, they don’t say who’s playing Robert Novak. Surely he’s in the movie. The entire Plamegate scandal wouldn’t have existed if Novak hadn’t pulled a Benedict Arnold by printing this information in his column. Oh wait, here it is. Robert Novak is played by this fellow.

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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Mortgage Securitization For Dummies

If you click on the link below, you too can play.

It’s even more fun than “Where’s Waldo” or the “Find the Pope in the Pizza” contest. Ready?

Dude Where’s My Mortgage?

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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Earth to Republicans: The Cold War is Over. We Won.

Republicans just have to recite their detailed in-depth philosophy — i.e., “No” — at every opportunity. Obama and Hillary Clinton are both pushing for the Senate to ratify the New START agreement between Russia and the U.S. This will require both countries to reduce their strategic warheads, and it will revive the inspections that used to be conducted under an earlier treaty.

But if you're a paranoid cold warrior, we only have enough nuclear weapons to annihilate every living thing hundreds of times over. We cannot ever reduce our stockpile — our security blanket! — or those evil Russians will attack us. Be very afraid!

Fear, and the burning desire to obstruct anything and everything — those are Republicans' two favorite drugs. And this time, they get to obstruct Obama AND Hillary at the same time. A peak experience! For anyone who’s within earshot of Capitol Hill, that bizarre sound you hear is a chamber full of Republicans having orgasms while shouting “NOOO!!!”

Or, maybe there’s another reason the GOP doesn’t want a treaty with Russia. Senator John Barrasso (R—Senile) has a dire warning for all of us:

We can never EVER trust the Soviet Union. Nikita Khrushchev says he will bury us! The Soviet Union is evil! The Red Menace! President Eisenhower must NEVER back down! Better Dead than Red!

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Congressman Andy Harris: Furious about Socialized Medicine

Words like “irony” don’t even begin to describe this. Freshman Rep. Andy Harris (R—ArrogantFuck) is having a hissyfit over government-paid health care. But it’s not what you think. He’s having a tantrum because he just found out that His OWN socialized medical coverage won’t take effect until next February.

What’s a wealthy parasite to do???

Andy Harris is an anesthesiologist. In his congressional campaign, he constantly railed against Obamacare and pledged to repeal it. His Democratic opponent had voted against Obamacare, but Harris trashed him for not being “committed” enough and for not promising to repeal it.

And now that Harris has been elected, he wants to have the same government-paid health coverage that he doesn’t want his lowly constituents to have. And he doesn’t want to wait until next February; he wants it Now. NOW. [stamps foot]

Like they say, you can’t make this shit up.

The whole thing came out at a benefits session for new House members and their families. According to a staff member who was present:

“He stood up and asked the two ladies who were answering questions why it had to take so long, what he would do without 28 days of health care….Harris then asked if he could purchase insurance from the government to cover the gap.”

Wait! You don’t mean — No! — the Public Option?!?!?!? You know, that commie proposal that you voted against? Asshole!

After Andy Harris had gotten the earthshaking news that his health coverage wouldn’t start until February, he sobbed:

“This is the only employer I’ve ever worked for where you don’t get coverage the first day you are employed.”

From millions of uninsured workers to Congressman Andy Harris:
We Feel Your Pain.


Monday, November 15, 2010

Detroit: Saved by Arab-Americans

If you surf through rightwing blogs at all, you probably “know” that Dearborn, Michigan (adjacent to Detroit) is a hotbed of Sharia and Muslim terror plots. The Greater Detroit area has about 200,000 residents of Middle Eastern descent.

If you’d rather see the glass as half full, this means thousands of Arab-Americans are helping to keep Detroit from sliding into the abyss. This article has an interview with an Iraqi immigrant — who came here in 1986 — whose company has twenty-three employees and brings in $20 million a year. He says:

“And 90% of my business is in Detroit. Does that sound like a dying city to you? You want to know if Detroit has a future? Ask us Arabs. We believe in this place.”

There’s an interview with another Iraqi immigrant who just arrived this past summer. He hasn’t found a job yet but he’s optimistic:

“I will save up for a couple of years and open a kebab shop ... then another one, and another one. If McDonald's can have restaurants all over the Arab world, then why can't I have kebab shops all over America?”

Then he points to some shops that are Arab-owned, and says:

“All of them got a chance to start something in this city. My turn is next.”

Bobby Ghosh, the author of the article, says:

“For Detroit, a city in critical condition, this new blood could make a difference. The impact is twofold: a desperately needed infusion of new citizens at a time when an exodus has drained metro Detroit of its middle class, both white and black; and an economic boost from a culture that likes to start new businesses. The Arab-American community in metro Detroit produces as much as $7.7 billion annually in salaries and earnings.”

While Detroit is moving up, some people in Arizona are going in the opposite direction. A dome-like building is going up in Phoenix, and some of the local rednecks are going ballistic. There’ve been complaints and frantic phone calls about this new mosque being built in their neighborhood. Sharia! Suicide Bombers!

Uhh, just one tiny thing — it’s a church.


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Sunday, November 14, 2010

Social Security Recipients: “Go Ahead, Make My Day!”

Wall Street’s congressional prostitutes (formerly known as Republicans) might want to think again before trying to derail Social Security. Judges who deny or delay people’s Social Security claims are receiving more threats than ever.

Times are tough and people are pissed. Obviously it’s wrong to threaten a judge for any reason. In any case, judges are just interpreting the law as it already exists; they aren’t writing the laws.

Now, if there’s anybody who deserves threats and retaliation (not that I‘m advocating anything of the sort), it’s the lawmakers who keep trying to “privatize” Social Security. Take Paul Ryan (please!). Now there’s a scumbag that should be watching his back. The above-linked article should be a wakeup call for Wall Street’s puppets in Congress: There are a lot of pissed off, desperate people out there, and they know where to find you.

In other news: How’s this for a Man Bites Dog story? A drunk driver crashed into 14-year-old Matthew Kenney, who was riding his bike, killing him. The drunk driver — David Weaving — is currently serving a ten-year prison sentence, since this is his umpteenth DUI conviction. And from behind bars, he’s filing a lawsuit against the parents of his 14-year-old victim. They allowed their son to ride his bike without a helmet, so the whole thing was their fault.

A serial drunk driver named David Weaving?!? If Herb Caen were still alive, he’d be having himself another “name phreak.”

Anyway, killing a kid on a bicycle and then suing his parents??? In case David Weaving’s fellow inmates are looking for somebody to shank…

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Friday, November 12, 2010

You Are What You Watch

Some of this is obvious. Conservatives watch Fox; liberals watch MSNBC.

But who’da thunk you’re making a political statement when you tune in to Mad Men or Dancing With The Stars?

In general, Republicans watch TV shows that are huge in the Nielsen Ratings. And they like reality shows — American Idol, Dancing With The Stars, etc. Democrats like programs that are critically acclaimed but have shitty ratings: Mad Men, 30 Rock.

I can truthfully say I’ve never watched any of those retarded reality shows. I had no idea this had any political relevance, but ever since Survivor and Big Brother came out in 2000 (which begat Fear Factor and all the rest of that drivel, IMHO) I’ve thought the whole concept was too dumb for words.

Republicans’ love for conformity and being on the “winning team” sometimes trumps their “family values” rhetoric. Modern Family and Desperate Housewives are favorites among Republicans.

Democrats like shows where the main characters are clearly flawed and show their dark sides. I’ll cop to that. Police dramas are generally more popular among Republicans, with the exception of Law & Order: SVU, which is more popular with Democrats. And yes, I like SVU. You can’t get any more flawed and/or eccentric than the main characters on that show. I also like CSI: New York. That fits the pattern too, since it’s the least popular of the CSI programs.

This article has a list of the top fifteen shows for Democrats and Republicans.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Teabaggers Suddenly Worried About Correct Spelling?!? WTF???

The irony meter is going berserk.

The same knuckle-dragging inbreds who brought us the Pubic Option, “Make English Americas Offical Language” and Morans are now suddenly concerned about proper spelling?!?!?!

Hell has frozen over! And a pig just flew past my window.

Lisa Murkowski’s write-in campaign might keep Joe Miller, Alaska’s favorite teabirther, out of the Senate. Miller has filed a lawsuit. (I thought conservatives were always complaining about “too much litigation”). He wants to be absolutely certain that everyone who voted for Lisa Murkowski spelled her name right. If not, their votes should be thrown out.

Since when is spelling — or any other mental faculty — important to a Republican? Irony Alert: If voters were required to demonstrate any basic level of intelligence or comprehension in order to vote — no Republican candidate would ever get elected.

In a related story: American students’ math skills rank 31st in the world. Most industrialized countries are ahead of us.

This is excellent news for conservatives, no? After all, when people can’t put two and two together — they vote Republican.

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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Shoot the American Family Association on Sight

Not the entire organization; just their Chief Cock-and-Scrotum-Washer, Bryan Fischer. And make it hurt. Make him twist slowly in the wind.

I’m not sure what killing the last grizzly bear has to do with “family values.” For some reason, the above-mentioned pukestain was sent over the edge by an L.A. Times article titled “Grim Outlook for Grizzlies in Yellowstone region.” The author, Julie Cart, wrote:

“With more bears and more people stuffed into the 22,000 square miles of bear habitat, something has to give, and no one here has a simple answer...”

(Here’s the link.)

Bryan “Short Eyes” Fischer responded with:

“Of course there is a simple answer: shoot these man-eaters on sight…One human being is worth more than an infinite number of grizzly bears. Another way to put it is that there is no number of live grizzlies worth one dead human being. If it’s a choice between grizzlies and humans, the grizzlies have to go. And it’s time.”

(In case you’re looking for a good laugh — or an excuse to kick the computer — here’s the link. You‘ll need to wash your eyes out with soap afterward.)

After that Biblical outpouring, Bryan Fischer still has some of God’s Love left over for federal judges:

“Maybe we could send a few of these 'nuisance' bears home with these federal judges and help them get their minds right about the mindless risk they are forcing on their fellow members of the human race. God makes it clear in Scripture that deaths of people and livestock at the hands of savage beasts is a sign that the land is under a curse.”

If “the land is under a curse,” here’s the cure: get Bryan Fischer out of the gene pool.

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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Republicans Finally Have Specific Plan for Deficit Reduction

So there. Republicans do TOO have specific proposals. They’re NOT just a bunch of mindless automatons sitting there saying “No.”

They have a detailed plan which will eliminate a whopping one half of one percent of the budget. Whoa!

Their target is the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Emergency Contingency Fund. This bloated inefficient program has created 250,000 jobs in 37 states. It was part of that commie stimulus package. Rep. Tom Price (R—Befuddled) said this program has encouraged too many people to lie around taking handouts.

Several Republican Governors have been in favor of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) emergency fund, including Haley Barbour of Mississippi. He said the program provided:

“Much-needed aid during this recession by enabling businesses to hire new workers, thus enhancing the economic engines of our local communities.”

Oh well, it’s kind of a moot point anyway. You see, this program that Rep. Tom Price is targeting — you know, the one that created 250,000 jobs for laid-off workers — Has Already Expired as of last September.


How’s that “takin’back yer country” thingy workin’ out for ya?

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Monday, November 08, 2010

Teabaggers Scared Shitless of Globalization

I read this in the Financial Times a week or two ago. I can’t remember if it was a column or a letter to the editor. Basically, the teabaggers’ paranoia runs a lot deeper than we know. They’re not just lashing out at socialists and swarthy minorities. There’s so much more.

(And since the Financial Times is polite and proper and all that, they didn’t use any derogatory terms like “teabagger.”)

The endless slogans about America being “Number One,” “unique in the world,” a “beacon of light” — Manifest Destiny in other words — this is deeply, deeply ingrained in the teabaggers’ belief system. The rest of the world is just a big blob of socialists, peasants and people of Other Religions. America is Different. Special.

The teabaggers are clinging to America’s uniqueness and superiority just as doggedly as they’re clinging to their guns and religion.

It’s absolutely imperative that America be separate from that global faceless blob. Preferably, of course, we should be in complete control — Domination! — over those faceless Other countries. But in any case, we must Never EVER be just a small part of that global melting pot of Other countries.

And unfortunately for the teawads, this is exactly what’s happening. Globalization; the global village; the flattening of the world. Whatever you want to call it, it’s Here. Now. And this trend is going to keep on accelerating, exponentially, whether anyone likes it or not.

G8, G20, the World Court, the IMF, the U.N. — it must be unbearable, intolerable, that America has to deal and negotiate with these international bureaucrats. And it’s just gonna get more and more like this.

If you’re a teabagger, the excruciating but undeniable fact is: America is not “unique,” “Number One!” or “God’s Chosen Country.” It’s just a country. No more; no less. There are about 200 countries in the world — give or take — and America is just one of them. We’re just a cog in one big (but not necessarily happy) global family. Get over it.

Tea Party, meet Ghost Dancing.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Judges Wanted. No Experience Necessary. Low IQs Welcome

MYTH: In order to become a judge, you have to be intelligent and have a thorough understanding of the law.

FACT: You can be dumber than a sack of maggotshit and still be a judge. That’s the only possible explanation for why Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Robert Perry ever made it to the bench.

Two years in jail for shooting an unarmed person pointblank while he’s lying on the ground?!?!?!?! Hopefully this case will be appealed, like the Rodney King verdict was. This case needs to be decided by a judge who has two brain cells to rub together.

In case you haven’t been following this case: On New Years Day, 2009, Johannes Mehserle — a transit security officer — was called to a train station in Oakland, CA because of a fight on a train. Mehserle and several other officers arrested several suspects, including Oscar Grant, who was black. Oscar Grant was lying face down on the ground — as he’d been ordered to do — when Johannes Mehserle shot him in the back.

Mehserle claimed he thought he was reaching for his stun gun but mistakenly grabbed his revolver instead. As unlikely as that explanation is, there was no way to disprove it. Mehserle was convicted of involuntary manslaughter instead of murder. (The trial had been moved from Oakland to Los Angeles.)

The average sentence for involuntary manslaughter is four years. With a gun enhancement, the maximum sentence is fourteen years. Judge Robert Perry sentenced Mehserle to two years, with credit for time already served.

So now the City of Oakland, where the murder took place, is being torn apart by demonstrations. And the most violent protestors marched into a modest residential neighborhood to do their damage. WTF???

Now if they could find out where Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Robert Perry lives, and take their protests to HIS neighborhood…

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Saturday, November 06, 2010

India on $200 Million a Day

[sigh] Apparently they just can’t come up with a Big Lie that’s too groundless or too retarded for the teabirthers. No matter how far down you think the bar has already been lowered — it’s lower. Barack Obama was born in Kenya, he’s a Muslim, and he’s channeling his late father’s desire to kill all white people and turn America into an African tribal haven for terrorists.

And now: Obama’s trip to India is costing $200 million a day. As always, the minute the rightwing shitspewers cough out the Lie Of The Day, millions of inbreds will swallow it hook line and sinker, and they’ll spread the “news” to their fellow Stupids.

No doubt the next teabag rally will feature a few signs protesting Obama’s
vizit to Indeeuh.

Here are some links, rightwing spewage and all.

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Friday, November 05, 2010

Health Insurance Industry to GOP: “Nevermind”

“Obamacare.” “Government Takeover of our health care!” “Shoved down the throats of The American People!” “Repeal and Replace!”

There’s just one tiny problem with all these hysterical rightwing soundbites: the health insurance industry doesn’t want Obamacare “repealed and replaced.”

Obama will veto every attempt to repeal health care reform. But more importantly, the HMOs will clamp onto Obamacare like a pit bull if the GOP tries to repeal it. The individual mandate is the most unpopular part of Obamacare and the basis for most of the lawsuits against it. It’s also a multi-billion-dollar gold mine for HMOs. Good luck trying to take that away from them.

Congressional Republicans can still keep the teabaggers riled up over “Socialized Medicine!” and “Death Panels!” They’ll probably add a “Repeal Obamacare!” amendment to every bill. But at least now we all know that the GOP’s puppetmasters don’t actually want them to succeed with “Repeal and Replace.”

Don’t worry, Republicans will probably continue with their “Repeal and Replace” fanfare and Astroturf “demonstrators” waving mis-spelled signs. What else are they gonna do?

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Thursday, November 04, 2010

Went to Canada, but Came Back

No, the election didn’t have anything to do with it. We spent two days in Victoria, B.C.; made the reservations several months ago.

Anyway, when you’re surrounded by carnage and mayhem, it’s best to focus on the silver linings. But for the grace of God, we could’ve had Ken Buck, Sharron Angle, Christine O’Donnell and Carly Failurina in the Senate.

And Dino Rossi appears to be failing in his third run for elective office. Two runs for governor of Washington — Poof!!! And Patty Murray is favored to win re-election to the Senate, but the results aren’t final yet. Dino Rossi likes to portray himself as an “outsider” because he can’t get elected to anything. Sort of like a homeless person who brags about not being materialistic.

California voters showed that — in some cases at least — there aren’t enough billions of dollars in the world to buy their votes. A few Texas oil tycoons tried to trick California voters into overturning the state’s clean energy law that was signed by Governor Schwarzenegger several years ago (Proposition 23). If Proposition 23 passed, millions of jobs would appear out of the ether, and California would instantly become the most prosperous place in the history of the universe. Fortunately the voters didn’t fall for it. Meg Whitman was in favor of Proposition 23 and she went down in flames with it.

Washington State also had a few sickfuck ballot initiatives that crashed and burned. Privatizing workers’ compensation insurance? Riiight. Wouldn’t you just love to have your workers’ comp claim be processed by a bunch of profit-driven go-getters who can make more money if they find a way to deny your claim. Thank God the voters saw through that bullshit. I’ll take a clock-watching bureaucrat any day; somebody who has nothing to gain by denying people’s claims and/or making the smallest possible payments.

And Costco was pushing for an initiative to privatize Washington’s liquor industry, to make it more like California and Arizona (among other states). Sure, I like being able to walk into any grocery store, supermarket or mini-mart — at any time of day or night — and buy some booze. But Washington’s version works just fine too. You have to buy your booze from a state-run liquor store that closes at 9 p.m. It can be sort of a pain, but I’ve never seen anyone going through the DTs because they didn’t get to the liquor store on time. (You can buy beer and wine almost anywhere, just not booze.) Another oddity about Washington is that almost every restaurant — anything that’s a proper restaurant and not just a café or coffee shop — has a full liquor license. Sort of the opposite of California, where you can buy booze everywhere, but a liquor license is something that restaurants will kill for.

When you go to the liquor store with any sort of regularity, the people who work there aren’t faceless bureaucrats. They’re real people. They’re acquaintances; your neighbors. Like everybody else, they’re supporting families; making rent/mortgage payments. And if that liquor privatization initiative had passed, they all would have lost their jobs — just so a few Costco executives could become even fatter.

So, pretty good election results, no? Well, you know, other than…

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