Saturday, February 6, 2016

SAR #16037

Check your internal tape against reality occasionally.
Slipping Shipping: US trains have carried fewer goods - agricultural products, chemicals, coal, metals, autos and so on – every week since last March. The rail freight business is so bad that the nation's biggest carrier is cutting investment 26% this year. Shipment of goods across the North Atlantic is down 22% from its 2014 peak and shipments from North America to Asia are down 10% from 2011. If there's no demand, production gets cut. If production gets cut there is no need to ship raw materials and no finished goods to ship. It's called economic activity, and it's slowing.
Numbers Game: In December, Clinton led Sanders 61 – 30 in the Quinnipiac poll. In the current poll, it's 44 -42. The same poll shows that Sanders does better than Clinton against Trump, Cruz and Rubio.
Novel Idea: A group called The Repair Coalition has been formed to promote the idea that if you buy something you own it and if you own it you can repair it, or at least try. But under the Digital Millennium Act you can't buy stuff any more, just rent it and if it breaks, tough. You can still jiggle the handle, but that's about it.
There's An App For That: In this year's presidential election, 80% of the votes will be cast/counted on electronic voting machines owned by private companies and running secret, proprietary software. This will leave us with no way to publicly verify the results. But don't worry, Republicans control most of the nation's election boards.
Protecting And Serving: In Texas, the governor supports the display of Christian crosses on police cars.
High & Mighty: The FAA has announced that it will destroy any drone flying within 36 miles of the Superbowl, yet you can't shoot one down even if it is hovering outside your bedroom window. But you don't own a football team.
Porn O'Graph: Capital gaining. Seems the poor babies who get all the capital gains and dividends pay most of the taxes on capital gains and dividends. Seems unfair that we don't pay their share.
The Parting Shot: 
Saturday, in the park...


McMike said...

re: you buy it; we still own it. We truly are reaching the vanishing point on the horizon of simulacra with respect to consumer transactions. Not just with products that you pay for but don't own; or products that you buy but have only a 70/30 chance of working even out of the package; but also banking which you make deposits to but that can be bailed-in; and insurance, which you pay premiums for, but don't receive any actual coverage.

It's robbery without a gun. The next logical step is for us to simply hand over our money with no pretense of rights or exchange. (In truth, I expect the elite to keep coming up with endlessly novel barely-credible ways to pretend these are bilateral exchanges, and not simply glorified strong-arm theft).

Re voting. I am not sure the Dems deserve the credit given by that author that they are silent about this issue out of fear of discouraging voters. The Dems stayed silent even after sweeping post-Bush into a Federal monopoly and national mandate. They will stay silent until they are not just a guaranteed minority, but also eventually eliminated entirely. There must be another explanation.

The truth is, to mount an effective counter-attack to vote stealing, they need to use federal power, and to use the bully pulpit, but also to build an effective local/state ground game - taking over the governorships, state AGs, and secretaries of state, along with state legislatures for gerrymandering and election laws, and also importantly the county clerks. It's that last one in particular - the ground game - where the Dems hesitate, because the Dems have a credibility problem, a words/actions disconnect, that prohibits them from developing an actual grounds-up power coalition. Because a true power-building program would bring the lies to the fore, at the same time it built a machine that would eventually realize it must turn on its host. (Just look at the Tea Party/Trump phenomena).

In any case, the longer you think about this, the more you realize the entire exercise of democracy in the USA is indeed pointless. They control the vote count, which means they control everything. Their control of everything else media, money, law enforcement, eavesdropping, corruption, etc etc all comes back to their control of vote-counting.

Ironically, our only hope may be the right wingers, who get enraged when the elite strip and flip Trump supporters out of existence.

George Anderson said...

Um, McMike, let me gently chide you that while 'liberals are everywhere' [many who count themselves as conservatives still have liberal values] the only thing that remains of the 'Democrat Label' is the label itself.

There are no liberals in politics, even Bernie is still slightly 'right' of Eisenhower. {in what has become known as 'keeping one's powder dry' Bernie still shies away from attacking the 'Military Industrial Complex'...which is at the root of our current plight.)

Ignorance is a terrible thing and there's a whole generation that thinks the worst president ever [Ronnie Reagan] is the best in modern times.

So we arrive at Ignorance revisited. You CAN take out papers and become a candidate [there are generally 150 candidates for President every election cycle] but you CAN'T get the party of your choices endorsement without first passing a 'sniff test' where you contractually promise to support the platform of that party. Now the DNC is made up from the same pool of people who make up the RNC, all answerable to the same group of oligarchs that give the orders around here. Refuse to 'sign the paper' and you WON'T get the party endorsement or any 'party funding'...yeah, I'm looking at Hill-Billy.

This is where Bernie stands apart. He has some deep pocketed supporters and it would be SUICIDE for the DNC not to fund his campaign but I'll bet they're teasing out/challenging every cent because they can.

Just as voting provides 'the illusion of' participation the 'Party System' provides the 'illusion' of opposition.

In the end you're born to your station in this life and rising to become a 'meat puppet' for the true rulers is no accomplishment as the current 'token' can attest. {He didn't even attempt to distance himself from a healthcare plan designed by his challenger and implemented in my home state!, It should be called Romneycare but the idea is let ignorant conservo-whackos hate the Democrat for what the Republicans have done.

Just like the first time I heard the term NAFTA it was coming from none other than that Republican Saint, Ronnie Reagan {and guess who he was a meatpuppet for?)

Which is to opine we still suffer under the yoke of Monarchy but they remain hidden behind the sideshow we refer to as electoral politics and the illusion of representation it provides.

kwark said...

RE "High and Mighty": ". . .they did not specify how and by whom the restrictions would be enforced." OK, I'll bite, how WOULD they "destroy" an offending drone? I can see it now, a dozen Apache attack helicopters swooping-in to destroy a threatening drone with their 30mm canon chain guns. Oh sure, there'll be a little collateral damage by those stray 30mm shells (we are talking about a target about the size of a basket ball flying at a few hundred feet) but it'll be worth it. Hmm, how many helicopters would the FAA need to cover the 36 mile zone? Hmm, is that radius or diameter?. Hmm, assuming diameter, that's a 1000 square mile area around the stadium! Yikes, better scramble the Air National Guard, pronto.