Tuesday, December 10, 2013

SAR #13344

America has become an experiment in unregulated capitalism. Ed Kilgore

On Reflection: While the nation's politicians and television pundits remember Nelson Mandela and what a great man we always knew he was and what good people we are for having noticed that, it might do well to recall that the US had him on the terrorist watch list until 2008.

We're Saved! The economy is showing signs of life, specifically increasing consumer debt not just for education and cars, but on general credit cards, too. And this is before Christmas guilt shopping kicks in.

Go Away: There about 30 million people in Saudi Arabia, 10 million of them 'guest workers' and/or illegals. With 25% of young Saudi men out of work, the government has decided to expel up to 2 million of the immigrants – Ethiopians, Somalis, Yemeni, and Bangladeshis. What their home countries, especially the smaller ones, will do with a sudden influx of unemployed men and a concurrent sharp decrease in the remittances they had been sending home is not of much concern to the Saudis. It is hard to envision the spoiled Saudi youth stepping in to do the menial jobs now being forcibly vacated. 
The Voice of Experience: Ted Cruz (R-Canada), who who has never served in either the US nor the Canadian army, says that Obamacare is “worse than any war.” He missed out on Dresden and Hiroshima.

Protect And Serve: A Naval officer who admitted he sexually abused his 13-year old daughter and forced his 10-year old son to watch as he had sex with a girlfriend has since been promoted. Twice.

Definition: When the GOP says that the ACA will cause 80 to 100 million insurance plans to be canceled, 'cancellation' includes changes that cover your children under your policy, or lowering your premium, or covering things it didn't used to – any change at all. It'll be in Webster's next year. 
It's Not Over, Over There: The crisis in the eurozone is not over. The causes of the long term problems haven't even been discussed in public, much less resolved. Five years of austerity has failed, so several more years of suffering are the obvious solution - according to the overlords. The euro was supposed to bring growth, prosperity, and a sense of unity to Europe. Instead, it has brought stagnation, instability, and divisiveness. Reality would suggest that dissolving the euro and not the EU would be a Good Idea. But how?

Keeping Score: George Osborne told the House of Commons that the UK's economy is growing, which proves that five years of austerity has succeeded. GDP has grown 1.4% this year and may soar another 2.8% next year. Unless they inflict even more austerity on the economy.

We're Doomed: China now uses 3.5 billion tons of coal a year – that's half of all the coal burned in the world. By 2020 it is expected to burn 4.8 billion tons a year and by 2035 to be burning 7 billion tons a year.

Blame The Victim: Republicans have taken to explaining that the persistence of long-term unemployment in the US is caused by paying unemployment benefits for more than 26 weeks. They believe that workers, especially black workers, will happily sit around drawing 40% of what they were earning rather than getting another job. Never mind that there is absolutely no evidence to support this view, it just fits their view of the world.

Porn O'Graph: Let's hear it for the little guy!

The Parting Shot:

Summer Palace, Sintra, Portugal

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