Saturday, February 27, 2016

SAR #16058

“Logic clearly dictates that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.” Spock.
Innocent Bystanders: It's kind of amusing to watch the GOP reaping what it spent so many years sowing. Now that Trump is gathering in the racist, xenophobic, government hating rank and file that's been crushed by the rich who think they own the party, the national leadership has discovered that most Republican voters are not really Republicans. Faced with a Trump triumph, the Old Guard is wondering if the Democrats will save us. Nope, because the Democrats are bent on self-destruction too, with Hillary. Barnum was right, no one ever went broke underestimating the American public. Or its politicians.
Definition: Frau Merkle is now pushing for market-conforming democracy’, which is Eurozone-speak for 'more austerity'.
It's The Money, Stupid:International terrorism is a strategic foreign-policy tool, which, in almost all instances, is applied by fundamentalist Sunni Islamists, whose operations are financed by fundamentalist Sunni royal families of the Arabic nations. The royals (and their billionaire friends who receive state contracts from them) in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, and Kuwait, are the main financial backers of jihadists. Actually, those royal financial backers are terrorism’s controllers, and the jihadist fighters are merely their soldiers — soldiers who are well paid by their controllers, but who fight not only  for the pay: they fight also because they share the same fundamentalist Sunni faith as their controllers do. Their clerics tell them to obey their royal masters, and it’s a ‘holy war.’” It's not ISIS-controlled oil fields we should be bombing.
Academic Fleedom: Now that students can tote guns into classrooms, Texas universities have advised faculty members to “avoid sensitive topics”, wear bulletproof vests and get adjuncts to teach the rowdier students.
Herd On The Street: Last year was the worst year for world trade since the Recent Disturbance, with the value of international goods shipments declining 13.8%. The first two months of this year have not been encouraging, either.
Easy Come, Easy Go: Personal income increased 0.5% in January. So did personal spending.
Report To The Commissioner:Looking back on almost 15 years in which the United States has been engaged in something like permanent war in the Greater Middle East and parts of Africa, one thing couldn’t be clearer: the planet’s sole superpower with a military funded and armed like none other and a “defense” budget larger than the next seven countries combined (three times as large as number two, China) has managed to accomplish -- again, quite literally -- absolutely nothing, or less than nothing.” So why do we keep droning on?
Footnote: While making the world safe for America back in 1965/66, the US helped Indonesian forces kill a million or so civilians. See, you thought it was a new thing with us, right?
Creative Destruction: There’s too much of everything, its far too cheap, and that’s not good for anyone. It’s hurting everyone. Oil costs almost nothing. Copper, iron ore, all that stuff – nobody wants it, but they keep mining the stuff anyway. More surplus. Lower prices. Can't even sell enough to pay the interest. But nobody has any money so even though stuff is nearly free we can't buy it. We got so good at making stuff without humans that the humans can't afford to be consumers. The only way to save the economy is to crash it. Time to start over.
Open Call: US District Judge Mark Kearney, auditioning to replace Scalia, has ruled that the First Amendment does not give the public the right to record their employees as they go about their public functions in pubic. For example,according to Kearney yo do not have a Constitutional right to film cops in the execution of their assigned duties. They're legally invisible.
Porn O'Graph: It's not just wages...
A Parting Shot:


McMike said...

re Krugman. Krugman seems to have lifted the theme of the GOP base's ideological simulacra from an earlier, more entertaining, Taibbi piece.

But this idea is not new, it became quite apparent during the GOP's three decades of ascendancy that they did not actually believe in anything. Any disciplined watcher would note flip flops (and reverse re-flip flops) over just abut everything. Depending on the time of day and who the target is, the GOP glibly contradicts itself routinely on states rights, individual rights, size of government, filibusters, judicial activism, market freedom, regulation, and just about everything else culminating most notably in the scope of Executive Power. I think the infamous "deficits don't mater" says it all. But it all can really be traced back to Saint Reagan, who stole an election by selling missiles to terrorists, and used the proceeds to finance drug-runners that assassinated nuns.

They make their own reality. Indeed.

The idiots in Oregon were a harbinger. An indicator that the wave had broken on itself into farce. They Christopher Guest-ed themselves with a real-life mockumetary treatment of the tea party sage rebellion. Welfare-rancher losers, occupying a bird sanctuary, unwanted by the locals, located on land stolen from Native Americans, and demanding that the place be given back to its owners - or else... something. Reduced to whining via Facebook over who has the conch, and begging for donated cases of pop-tarts.

The "base", of course, just wants to be pissed off at someone, and has never cared to worry to much about the specifics.

We all have an idiot uncle/brother-in-law who has inundated us over the years of holiday dinners with mountains of regurgitated blather about the outrage du jour, completely unable to hear himself talk, and zero interest or ability in comparing the unassailable principle he is pounding the table about now, to the one from yesterday lying neglected on the floor.

So the beast the GOP force-fed with bile to make political pate, has now broken its chains, lured to the rocks by the siren call of pure uncut hate-smack. Insane with desire to feed its jones, and responding always to ever-more-powerful lizard-brain foreplay.

It's never been about the specific message. All that salivating is actually for the bell.

And so the beast has turned on its maker. And even in this, the GOP can't muster more that B-movie satire of themselves. Some oaf in a bad vinyl creature costume lumbers out of the muck and carries the screaming damsel away, while the heroes make Captain Kirk poses as if they are pinned helplessly under foam boulders.

McMike said...

re: creative destruction/abundance. Pretty good rant, and a nice barstool-distillation of how I feel about much if it. But he short-changes himself by characterizing Sanders' pitch as extreme, or as some sort of Cuba solution.

That's the elite's miss-characterization of what Sanders proposes.

What Sanders actually proposes is modest, with working models already working well in other western economies, and the core of what he is in fact actually proposing is simply that we restore ourselves back to what was in place when this country actually worked much better (on the economic front).

McMike said...

[one last thing...] Re Trump.

I want to float something I haven't really developed, which is this: I watched Trump for like 30 seconds on the late show a couple months back and there's the odd thing: I agreed with everything he said.

You set aside immigration and ISIS, and the general jerkoff bombast (which is what the media focuses on), and almost all his other talking points seem almost to come from the left.

He likely orbited in the east coast left-center DNC Dem world for most of his adult life. I suspect he is left-libertarian on abortion rights, gay rights, drug policy, and even civil rights (mainly in a sort of who-gives-a-crap what other people do way). And a lot of his economic talking points (to the limited extent I have head them) could almost be coming from Sanders. There is also no doubt he'd be happy, eager, to take his followers' guns away.

Not sure the implication, but there it is....

George Anderson said...

Whew, you're on a roll this morning, McMike! Not to get distracted but where is the 'reasonable Trump' on the campaign trail?

Re: Creative Destruction: I will once again opine the only reason we haven't experienced a revolution is because nobody has come up with a 'better deal' than capitalism...which is beyond pathetic when you think about it.

Even those calling for the overthrow of the government want to keep the current system in place, leaving us with the classic 'meet the new boss, same as the old boss!' situation.

Worse, it demonstrates the publics' feeble mental grasp on the dynamics of self-governance.

How ironic that truly benevolent despots are called 'weak' while the label 'Great' is reserved for mass murderers?

While pondering the origin of humanity on this planet and the conundrum of the persistence of the missing link [Homo Sapiens just appears in the fossil record, fully formed, about two million years ago.] makes me think about this planet as somebody else's Australia [which began as a prison colony.]

It's situations like the one we are currently facing that makes me wonder if our progenitors were merely 'undesirables' or if they were first deemed 'insane'?

The latter would go a long way toward explaining why nobody has come back...

McMike said...

Re: George A. Re: "No better system". Perhaps.

For the record, Sanders isn't really proposing something besides capitalism, merely a different flavor, and one in which the power of capital has its influence slightly more offset by the power of government.

Charles Kingsley Michaelson, III said...

Re McMike Number Three: I, he said quietly, agree; beyond the ELECT ME! sideshow, I mostly agree with The Donald, too. Scary.

Anonymous said...

Re: So why do we keep droning on?

Remember your "governments should run more deficits" comment yesterday?

That's why we keep "droning on" because the evil government can "afford" to do so. Nothing exists to constrain our evil government; surely not the "citizens" who are - because of perpetual deficits - only concerned with "genital usage", "those people", and climate change instead who should get a limited (constrained) amount of government loot gotten only from taxes.

An evil government that can spend anything it wants will "drone on" forever. And the "citizens" will let it do so as long as the government loot keeps flowing. And, with deficits, it can flow forever and ever.

Anonymous said...

Texas Hold'm: The metal detectors at school doors will soon be used to confirm every student is properly armed and ready for instruction.