Monday, May 26, 2014

Happy Memorial Day!

On this Happy Memorial Day 2014, we pause from our bar-b-ques and ballgames and parades to remember one thing:

The Republicans love our veterans.

Just ask them.

Well, not all of our veterans.

Not the gay ones. Yuck.

But other than that one small exception, Republicans can't wait to tell you how much they love our veterans.

Of course, they don't love them enough to adequately fund the VA.

Because even though VA funding has gone up by 50% under Obama (little thanks to the party of "no") the number of veterans needing help has gone up over 100% since Simple W. started his wars.

And, surprise surprise, the last bill to increase VA funding was filibustered by--you guessed it--the Republicans.

Now, before you jump to any rash conclusions, this only proves that patriotism is one thing and raising taxes on the rich is another. Obviously, they are mutually exclusive.

Still, the Republicans love our veterans so much that they will happily make more of them at the drop of a hat.

What Republicans really mean when they say how much they love our veterans is this:

We will always find enough money to start wars, but never find enough money to care for the people who do the fighting.

Oh, and God Bless America!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The United States of Amnesia

OK, I admit to borrowing the title from Gore Vidal...who is sorely missed.

But that's the way it goes. Great people die off and we're left to shuffle on without them...hopefully having learned something from them.

Anyway, Vidal's point was that we Americans, as a people, tend to forget things in an incredibly rapid fashion. Forget or perhaps never know in the first place.

The Republicans understand this, and act accordingly. Already there's a concerted effort to make us believe that the presidency of Bush/Cheney wasn't the soul destroying, mind numbing, complete disaster that it was.

And so, naturally, it follows, for reasons that have no basis in reason, that we now have a great number of voters longing for a Congress controlled by Republicans come the 2014 midterms. And maybe even a Republican president in 2016.

Coupled with a Supreme Court ruled by 5 sorry, old, corporatist white men, that would leave the Republicans in charge of all 3 branches of government.

What could possibly go wrong?

Well, let me tell you:

How 'bout another war? Pick one; Iran, Syria, North Korea. Russia! What about all at once?  That would be soooo good for the defense industries! Really pump up their bottom lines.

How 'bout completely unregulated industries? Imagine the oil spills! Wow! Imagine the water and air pollution! Get rid of the EPA and unleash the beauty of unfettered American capitalism.

Climate change, slimate change. Just another liberal lie. Besides, Al Gore is fat! Drill baby drill! Frack baby frack! Burn baby burn!

While we're at it, let's do away with the Department of Education and all public schools, too. Charters are the way to go! That's where the money is...

And speaking of big money, Wall Street would do a great job with Social Security. Sure, there would be winners and losers, but, hey, that's life!

Oh, and by the way, this ain't Europe, so health care is only for people who can afford it. Remember, makers not takers.

Fuck it, let's undo all of the social progress of the last 80 years! Women belong pregnant and in the kitchen, blacks were probably better off as slaves, and gays should just turn straight--or disappear.

Finally, only white men and women with property should be allowed to vote.

The philosopher Santayana famously remarked, "those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."

But, what the hell? There's an old Russian proverb that translates to "repetition is the mother of learning." Let's go for it!

And so it goes...

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

True Or False: Doug MacEachern Is A Libertarian Hack

Last Sunday, Doug MacEachern, who is one of the crack team of editorial columnists at The Arizona Republic, (to my knowledge the only daily paper in a major metropolitan area to NEVER win a Pulitzer Prize for anything other than cartoons), took up his quill pen, and ever ready righteous indignation, to warn us--yet again--of the dangers of creeping unionism in Phoenix. Oh, those pesky labor unions with their demands for a living wage, safe workplaces, and, horrors, benefits. They must be stopped! And MacEachern, the Paul Revere of the Arizona branch of the Free Market/To Hell With The Workers Club, is just the guy to do it.

For those of you fortunate enough to never have read any of his work, MacEachern has been writing essentially the same column for at least 20 years. Always some variation of "the unions are bad, regulations are bad, multiculturalism is bad, liberals are very bad, the free market is the only thing that will save us" crap that the right, and libertarians in particular, spew out on a regular basis.

The cornerstones of their "ideal" Arizona are low taxes and low wages and the "freedom" to fuck over your workers. Because, uh, I don't know, Ayn Rand? The fact that this method has never delivered the results they swore it would, and has in fact resulted in Arizona being the southwestern version of Mississippi, does not deter them from constantly repeating them. That's the thing about True Believers: They have faith and that's what really matters. Not facts--faith. "If only we could drive wages down even lower and remove all taxes...then you'll see how right we are!" Uh huh.

So, of course, unions are the root cause of all the bad in our would be capitalist paradise--at least in the bullshit fantasy libertarian world that Dougie Mac flits around in.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Benghazi, Ergo Benghazi

So we had a focus group come in and tell us how to get more hits on the old blog. Because frankly, just between you and me, it's been a bit stagnant.

There were snacks, and charts and graphs, and a heartfelt Q&A.

And what we decided was that we had to start focusing on things that really matter to people.

Now personally, I couldn't care less about this whole Benghazi "thing." I mean, sure, it was very sad. Dead people are sad.

And dead Americans are the saddest of all dead people. In fact, 1 dead American is sadder than a million dead anything else. Am I right?

But somehow these 4 dead Americans in Benghazi are even sadder still. Much sadder than the 3000 plus who died on 9-11.

And the 4000 plus who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Because these 4 died while Obama was president!

And it was his fault. It must have been his fault. Oh, yeah, his and Hillary's. Can't forget her! Why else would the great minds of the GOP be rolling around in it like pigs in shit, if it wasn't their fault?

Couldn't be because Darrell Issa's IRS "scandal" isn't working out for them. Couldn't be because the more people learn about Obamacare, the happier they are with it. Couldn't be because the Republicans don't have any ideas about making the country a better, more just, safer, and healthier place. No, all of their ideas produce exactly the opposite effect.

And it certainly couldn't be because all of the Republican 2016 presidential candidates are laughably flawed in ways that should be obvious to all but the most obtuse "undecided" voters.

Still...we have to be realistic about these things.

Bottom line is: We need more hits.


(To be honest, regarding Benghazi, I am kind of interested in that CIA station just down the road from the consulate...but that's not what they're going to be focusing on, is it? Didn't think so.)