51 thoughts on “Wednesday, July 8, 2015: a poignant thought

    • If, by some miracle delivered from the 11th Dimension, Dubbya was tried and convicted for high crimes against the country and the world; could we nullify his appointments?

      I have often found myself wishing that President Obama had taken a page from the GOP playbook and replaced every appointee he has the authority to replace but i figure that the wingnuts would shoot him and feed his kids to alligators.

  1. He’s right. Revenge is, in effect, both stupid and of no useful consequence. But sadly, those also are the words that pretty much define the entire of the human species overall. See, for example, The Republican Clown Car, Fox News, Koch bros,, ISIL, Congress . . . the list is endless.

  2. On Patinkin’s comment: yes, that is a good thought and one easily forgotten in this life.

  3. It was explained to early in life that:
    “Revenge is renting space in your head to people that don’t deserve it”

  4. I am reading the UK National Budget, which was delivered to the H of P today. Its is called the first Conservative budget in nearly 20 years (not since Tony B-liar took over with his insincere, snake oil smile). Its an interesting read, as it smacks of Reichwing dogma in places, but then again there are some significant plays in support of the social contract. It is an interesting study in how far to the left, even the right-wing parties in Europe are…. or maybe I should say – how far to the right the political discourse is in the US compared to the rest of the world.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3153214/George-Osborne-uses-summer-Budget-announce-tax-cuts-welfare-cuts.html

    The good:
    Tax cuts for the lowest-paid 29m workers, mandatory increase in the minimum wage, faster than anyone expected, (but also some big benny cuts in tax credits even as the Walmart loophole is being closed somewhat). The tax adjustments are very Obama-like, barely a tick down for the top 10% earners and no cut at all for the 1% – except for estate tax – which rose to a modest 1m pounds (modest compared to US and still in line with inflation). There is a handy graph on the difference between the benefits cap per household and average earnings – 20,000PS v 25,000PS – so it’s possible to take home 80% of what a person’s average earnings in the UK in benefits, job, child etc.

    Buy-to-let landlords lose their tax credit to help buy-to-live owners have an advantage.

    Free TV for the over-75s

    Hits on tax avoidance and temporary non-resident (that’ll fook up Putin’s mobsters a bit).

    Benefits rates to rise slower than wages for first time in 20 years

    Yearly stipend for decorated veterans of any age.

    The bad:
    Corp tax rate cut

    Student grants for low-income families axed😦

    No jobless bennys for under 21s – you must ‘earn or learn’ – hmm, depends on the opportunities.

    Anyhow – if I get the time I’d like to compare and contrast, because my overall feel is that the UK is still far more generous that the US on the social safety net (no discussion of health care here as it does not even compare).

    • Hmm add to the bad – I am not opposed to balancing the books to ‘fixing the roof while the sun shines’, but making balanced budgets legally binding smacks of neoliberalism.

      • This may just be me, but I get confused by all those “neo-” terms, because they often sound like the opposite of what the second half would be. Balancing budgets is not a liberal thing, it’s a conservative thing. And making balanced budgets legally binding is something conservatives always call for, not liberals.

        You have to allow some flexibility for unforeseen things. Forcing budgets to be balanced by law just means when that really bad freak storm hits, there’s no allowance for extra spending to aid in recovery, which leads to a downward spiral in the standard of living. That’s why I oppose mandatory balanced budgets.

        • Agreed on the mandatory balancing, Wayne, I still support trying to balance the budget as deficits *do* matter over the long term – its the same as debasing the currency which kings have done to their serfs for eons.

    • Yearly stipend for decorated veterans of any age….
      Seriously? Too bad my Bronze Star from Nam wasn’t issued by the British.
      So far, my yearly stipend has been,,,,ummmm…$0.00

      • Yup 10,000 GBP /year for life for winners of Victoria or George Cross – the two highest awards….not a perfect solution, but I am fed up of hearing of old soldiers selling their medals to pay for their heating bills. What kind of country treats its old soldiers like that, who for whatever cause, risked their lives as their country ordered them to?

    • Republican opponents argue that the sight of an “honest-to-goodness socialist” even gaining on Clinton in the polls proves just how dangerously radical the Democratic party has become.

      Interesting the perception that a government dedicated to helping its own people attain a fuller life is deemed “dangerously radical” even as the political party which is motivated only by money and power and is rapidly descending into Nazi-style fascism considers itself “American” to the core.

      • I think they are using the term socialist incorrectly.
        What I think Bernie Sanders is advocating is reducing the disparity between the .001% and those of us that have to operate in the real world.
        The playing field will never be level but at least we can try to limit moving the goal posts for those that benefit the most from a rigged system.

        • Precisely. But to the money boys and the politicians that serve them, mal-words, properly used, convince the ignorant masses that evil is afoot. And Bernie Sanders is implicitly EVIL because he’s a SOCIALIST just like Hitler and Stalin (I know, I know, but that’s the message) when the reality is precisely the 180 opposite.

          The biggest problems in this country are not Socialism and ‘gubmint handouts’; they’re ignorance (widespread) and greed. The only place “equality” shows up anymore is in the elementary classroom, and even there it’s nothing more than a buzzword, has zero meaning in the current world where only money and power count for anything.

          Our days are numbered for a variety of reasons, but the 0.1% account for the bulk of it. Bernie sees it and would work to change it, ergo the more attention he grabs, the more followers he picks up, the bigger becomes the threat. And so . . . etc.

  5. So, the NYSE, United Airlines and the Wall Street Journal.com all went down at the same time.

    • Oops, who was supposed to watch him on the day of the signings/veto?
      He’s been Governor for five years!

      • Wasn’t he hanging out with Christie recently? Two inflated egos who think they’re the greatest. Ralph Cramden level of greatest it appears.

    • (that’s great)

      hmm, do you think that’s what is powering DumpTruck with his horsesh*t?

      Donald Trump: ‘I Will Win the Latino Vote’

      “I have a great relationship with the Mexican people. I have many people working for me – look at the job in Washington – I have many legal immigrants working with me. And many of them come from Mexico. They love me, I love them,” the 2016 GOP contender said in an interview with NBC News. “And I’ll tell you something, if I get the nomination, I’ll win the Latino vote.”

      Bold mine. Notice how he abruptly catches himself with that phrase then attempts to deflect.
      The man is nuts.

    • “I have a great relationship with the Mexican people. I have many people working for me – look at the job in Washington – I have many legal immigrants working with me. And many of them come from Mexico. They love me, I love them,”

      They love him, and he loves them. What more needs to be written?////

      • A modern corporation is like a bunch of monkeys sitting in a tree – the ones at the top, all they see are smiling faces looking up at them. The ones at the bottom, all they can see are assholes.

    • Well? Since only abut 9 Latinos will vote in the GOP primaries and they are barking mad,..

      Actually, he might be right. And he might be on to something. It is entirely possible that the biggest effing asshole in the explored universe will be the most popular choice among modern GOoPers.

  6. All In is airing this NBC Donald Trump interview, and the camera backed off from Trump enough that it looks like he’s ‘gaining’ on Chris Christie in the weight department.

  7. Keith Olbermann and MSNBC: Why It’s Time for a Reunion

    Occasionally, a breakup proves a big mistake for both parties. Witness the strange case of MSNBC and Keith Olbermann.

    The struggling cable network and the well-traveled host have both been back in the headlines – him, as of today, with official word that his contract won’t be extended at ESPN; and MSNBC with the news that Brian Williams will land there, giving the NBC News anchor a second chance on the company’s second-tier network.

    While their relationship was often rancorous, Olbermann’s lengthy and biting commentary not only branded and defined MSNBC but set the channel on its current course. Indeed, the NBC-owned network’s entire lineup of primetime hosts – Rachel Maddow, Lawrence O’Donnell, Chris Hayes – were essentially spun out of Olbermann’s ribs, as management sought to build on Olbermann’s success by becoming a liberal counterweight to Fox News Channel.

    I’d like to see him back until after the 2016 election, at least.

      • According to the article

        A La Raza spokesman told the WSJ that all of the 2016 hopefuls were invited and that none of the Republicans opted to attend.

        Rubio may want to seem Cuban but not Latino (I know, I know).

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