Thursday, May 5, 2016

SAR #16126

-->So far this morning I've found stories that tell me: The banks rig every market and every interest rate as well as most commodity prices. The cops will beat, tase and shoot you without fear of prosecution. Car safety measures can kill you, and if they don't doctors and hospitals will. The profits of oil companies are more important than the earthquakes they cause. The US conducted military combat actions in at least seven countries yesterday but is not at war with anyone. And the Democratic Party isn't. ←-
Asked & Answered: Can Trump become the President of the United States? Yes, which ought to bring into question the whole idea of democracy. Obviously Trump supporters are unfit to decide the fate of the nation. But equally, the Dem's superdelegates are an affront to the concept of democracy. Me, I think Venice is not all that bad a model. The Venice of the Doges.
The Race To The Bottom: Eight years ago large numbers of voters went to the polls full of hope. This year most will go to the polls full of fear and loathing, voting for the lesser evil. Heck of a way to chose a leader.
Freedom From Information: The National Pork Producers, The Cattlemen's Beef Association and the United Egg Producers want congress to change the FOIA law to explicitly hide their lobbying activities from the public.
Eat Two Apples: Medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death in the US. Stay out of hospitals – a surprising number of people die there.
Sure Things? We are supposed to be comforted by the fact that Hillary leads Trump nationally by a 6.2% margin. Right. That was her lead over Bernie Sanders in Indiana on Monday evening.
Perspective: Nationally, US house prices increased by about 7% last year – and at that rate will double in price (but not value) within 10 years. Is this reasonable? How much did your income increase?
Conform: A straight A student in Tomball, Texas is being forced to cut his hair because it is “too long for a boy.” Because, according to the school district, the other boys find it distracting. The school district also has a written prohibition against students disagreeing with its pronouncements, so there is no appeal.
Solving Poverty: Alabama has reduced the number of people depending on food stamps by 70% in the last month by the simple expedient of throwing them off the SNAP program. They are still poor and still hungry, they're just not getting food stamps. It is called welfare reform, a Clinton specialty from the 1990's.
Differences: Not only do the rich have more money than we do, they live longer. Much longer.
A Parting Shot.


George Anderson said...

Hey! Food photos are Jesse's thing! [not that he cares, just saying.]
Interesting to see the pundits pondering the 'nastiness' of the coming (fixed) fight between Clinton & Trump.

Will Billy-Jeff's record be enough to sink her? He pretty much single-handedly rolled back the New Deal at a time when automation and off-shoring (and the resultant 'churning' of the workforce) that cut tens of millions off from their 'means of support'.

I opined in my blog yesterday that most people are 'too nice', which is how the...'self-interested' keep getting over on them. They (sadly) believe in junk like Karma, that the nasty among us will get theirs or, worse, that God will 'make them pay', so they do nothing.

And we all suffer as a result.

Just a little something to ponder among the many other mind-bending offerings in today's excellent piece here on SAR!

McMike said...

Re National Interest on Trump.

Is it just me, or.... does this piece (content aside) read in tone and style like a student Marxist pamphlet, after being translated from French?

Demetrius said...

If you take the "e" out of Doges, does that clarify the meaning?

Charles Kingsley Michaelson, III said...

A few years back when my wife and I were touring Venice, with me as chief guide, we went to the Basilica di San Giovanni e Paolo. I told her that the walls and floor contained the crypts of 25 Doges.

We spent an appropriate amount of time admiring the structure, then repaired to a sidewalk cafe across the square for a glass of refreshment. After a few sips she asked me where the graves of the doggies were, she hadn't seen them.

- ckm

mistah charley, ph.d. said...

"Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard." - H. L. Mencken

maybe that's what will happen

billmon, during the bush years, had a blog "whiskey bar" - title taken from the lyrics of the song "moon of alabama", by kurt weill, recorded by the doors

now he tweets - recently he wrote


1) Leaving aside political stupidity of excluding indies from major party primaries, the practice relies on a myth -- one of many in system.

2) The myth (legal fiction might be better term) is duopoly parties are purely private organizations, & thus should be able to set own rules

3) But this is pettifoggery. Reality is 2 parties enjoy a privileged position within our "2 party system" -- one reinforced by state power.

4) Most states have legal barriers - usually onerous - to keep smaller parties off ballots & protect duopoly. Some still use "party lever"..

5) encourage straight Dem/GOP party line voting.

6) Party primaries are treated as official elections, costs subsidized by the taxpayers.

7) And on & on. Duopoly parties hard wired into legal framework of political process in ways that make a mockery of claims to private status

8) So any further attempt to limit access of indies to primary ballots would be a systemic closure -- tightening cartel's grip even more

9) And systemic closure - like more closed primaries - to block future Sanders or Trumps would only make sclerotic, dysfunctional system...

10) ...even MORE sclerotic & dysfunctional: reinforcing everything people hate about American politics & politicians.

11) Ultimately, it's a death spiral -- an oligarchical system seeking escape from consequences of oligarchy by becoming MORE oligarchical.

12) And, ultimately, it ends in systemic collapse, when a shock (a lost war, a depression, an exceptionally skilled demagogue) comes along..

13) ...that the system no longer has the political legitimacy to survive.

in important ways, the 3 conditions in point 12 apply here and now - as a line from the firesign theatre said, "if you push it hard enough, it falls right over" - the question is, is it being pushed hard enough?

i guess we'll see

Rick said...

For me, the 'lesser of two evils' ended with my vote for the current president.

From now on, I'm voting for somebody I feel represents my values.

Jill or Mimi, anyone?

Anonymous said...

Keeps the Doctor away...: Better yet, keep out of the doctor's office. Every time I visit the USA I see the disgusting practice of carpeting and wallpaper/wood paneling in doctor's offices hasn't changed. A good indication that these places never get sanitized. T

That and almost no one with the flue or cold in the USA wears face mask to prevent infecting others. Nothing quite like getting on a plane for a flight and having the sodding feverish idiot behind hacking their lungs all over the other passengers. The three I's that American was founded on : Individualism, (willful) ignorance and inappropriate behavior writ large.