The Watering Hole, Monday, June 6, 2016: Can American Democracy Actually Work?

I want to believe. I want to believe that democracy can work in America. But can it? Can it really?

Although it was originally posted more than two years ago on Alternet, Raw Story reprinted an article that makes me wonder. It seems humans will believe what they want to believe, facts be damned. People who thought there were WMDs in Iraq clung to that misperception even harder when shown an article correcting that story. People who thought President George W. Bush banned ALL stem cell research still believed that even when told only a partial ban was put in effect. (No new stem cell lines could be created for research, but research was allowed to continue using the 60+ lines then in existence. Which isn’t nearly enough.) These were examples making conservatives look bad, but political leaning has nothing to do with it. It’s true of all humans, regardless of political philosophies. Facts simply don’t matter. But Education does. If you’re taught the truth about things when you’re younger, you’re less likely to believe false things when you get older. Kids grow up believing what their parents teach them to believe, which is fine if the parents aren’t complete idiots. But if they are, by the time kids enter the public education system they’re already off to a bad start. It would help if schools were allowed to teach actual critical thinking skills, as people would learn how to verify new information and not just accept it because it confirms what they already believe. But as the study shows, that seems to be the essence of the problem. We do not seem to be wired to process information this way. At least, according to how the scientist interpreted the results. There was no measure beforehand of how well the participants could use critical thinking skills, and therefore may have had pre-conceived ideas (however false) but couldn’t process the new information in a way that would make them change their opinion. Hence, the tendency to cling harder to what they previously believed to be true.

Religion may also be responsible for much of this. And not just Christianity, but organized religion of any kind. Particularly in America, we have a lot of people who claim religion is important in their lives, but who don’t even know basic facts about their own religion as well as atheists and agnostics do. But the areas in America where religion is least important are also the areas where literacy rates tend to be higher. Religion requires no critical thinking, and discourages questioning what one is told to be the truth. And while there have been men (almost entirely) who were allowed to explore questions about faith, their answers were heavily censored and only allowed publication if approved by the religious leaders. In other words, not a lot of objectivity, and essentially just an addition to what people are being told to believe. The approved philosophical writings were used to justify why what you were being told is the truth, which is what the study seemed to indicate happens even with so-called smarter people. People still believe what they want to believe and use their reasoning to justify it afterwards. The problem is, there are way too many people in this country who believe provably false things like the Sun revolves around the Earth, and a large percentage who don’t know the Universe began with some kind of large explosion (as opposed to being brought into existence as is). Even more frightening is that more than half do not understand or believe in Evolution. How many times have you heard someone (often a religious conservative) say, “If we’re descended from monkeys, how come there are still monkeys?” (Evolution doesn’t say all monkeys turned into humans. Evolution says humans and monkeys share a common ancestor.) If you can’t start with the most basic of factually correct information, how can you possibly make a well-reasoned decision on which direction to take our country? If you think voting for someone who actually believes the Earth is less than 10,000 years old is going to solve our nation’s problems, then you’re one of the problems.

As I said before, Education can help, especially when started at an early age. As soon as children learn there are natural explanations for the way the Universe works (even if we don’t fully understand them yet), and that it’s not all attributable to an impossible Being with severely psychotic tendencies who kills at a whim, there is hope for Democracy in this country. And a better life for all, too. Studies have shown that elsewhere in the world, the highest standards of living tend to be found in the least religious countries, and the poorest in the most religious. America seems to be the exception. We have both a higher-than-average standard of living and yet are among the more religious countries in the world. But that will change if more Americans grow up believing nonsense before they are taught to think for themselves. Otherwise we just end up with another generation that doesn’t have enough sense to realize someone like Donald Trump is too ignorant and unqualified to run this country. And because he loves the poorly-educated, he’ll create more because they love him so much. And the Great Experiment known as America will have finally failed.

Please don’t let anyone you know vote for Donald Trump. You’ll just be voting for the end of America.

This is our daily open thread. feel free to discuss whatever you wish. Just don’t vote for Donald Trump.

The Watering hole, Monday, May 30, 2016: Will America Elect Yet Another Overtly Racist President?

America is far from perfect. We have achieved many great things in our history, but it has been despite our flaws, not because of them. And among the worst of our flaws is this country’s history of racism and white supremacy. Yes, not just the racism but the white supremacy, too. We on the Left post many words decrying white supremacists, but we rarely admit our country has elected many white supremacists POTUS, and they weren’t all Conservatives and/or Republicans and at least a few were Progressives and/or Democrats. As a Liberal, that bothers me. I want what’s best for everyone, and the color of one’s skin does not determine whether one is a human being or not. But there are many people, white people in particular, who feel this is not so; they feel that one’s skin color DOES determine how human one is. And sadly, these people often get elected to public office, where they are able to put their racist viewpoints into law. A President Donald J. Trump would be such a racist president.

It’s bad enough that Trump lies, and lies, and lies, and lies, and lies, and lies, and, just for good measure, engages in promoting conspiracy theories. (This is not to mention the xenophobia, misogyny, birtherism and bullying tactics.) But Donald Trump’s overt racism is probably one of the least admirable things about him. And yet, it’s precisely the reason he is so admired among many of his supporters. White supremacist organizations of all kinds have been openly endorsing Trump, while he has renounced or even denounced so few of them. He had to lie (there’s no other word for it) and say he didn’t know much about David Duke, after the former KKK Grand Wizard publicly endorsed him, despite the fact that several years ago Trump publicly commented on David Duke and his association with the Klan. So why hem and haw over publicly rejecting his endorsement? Trump knew Duke was connected to the Klan. Is that not enough to say he doesn’t want Duke’s support? Why say he has to know more about him before commenting? And if Trump doesn’t want the support of white supremacists, why does he so often retweet their tweets? (He can’t claim he didn’t know when their screen name has “white genocide” in it.)

Many of Trump’s fans like him because, as they tell it, “He says what I’m thinking.” If that’s true of you, then you’re not thinking good thoughts. In fact, you’re talking like someone who wants to take us back to the 1940s and 1950s, when white men were generally (if often wrongly) perceived to be the most admired people in the country. (Are you Pat Buchanan, by any chance?) And you have a problem for which you should seek treatment. Trump appeals to people like you because he uses “Othering”, where all your problems are blamed on people who aren’t like you. In other words, people who are non-white, non-Christian, and non-American. Others. Others who can be scapegoated. It’s the very ugly secret behind Trump’s success to win the nomination of the party that, let’s be truthful here, appeals as hard as it can to low-information, low-effort-thinking, less-educated, and less-intelligent voters. People who have opinions not based on reality. Of course, as part of their juvenile “I know you are but what am I?”-style of debating, they accuse us of not being based in reality, because the way we see the world doesn’t match the way they see the world. I’m not just talking about the difference between the way Liberals and Conservatives see the world, I’m talking about people who believe so many things that are provably false. And they base their voting choice on who they think could best solve the problems of the world as they see them, meaning both their problems and the world. These people are either not very intelligent, or very afraid of something that isn’t going to happen to them. Do conservative voters in the Midwest states really believe ISIS is going to come to America and bring death and Sharia Law to them? Just because they’re taking over a country thousands of miles away from here, that doesn’t have the same history as our country, that doesn’t have the same religious makeup as ours, that wasn’t enjoying the same freedoms as ours, doesn’t mean it’s going to happen here. I mean, c’mon! I thought you folks loved our military. Have you no faith in their ability to defend us from whatever it is you imagine is going to happen to us? (And you are imagining it. It isn’t going to happen.) And whatever it is you fear is going to happen, do you really think an overtly racist president is the best choice to be commanding your military? Say what you will about Hillary Clinton (and many of you Trump supporters have been doing just that, even though much of it isn’t true, meaning grounded in the real reality), she doesn’t see our oversized military as the go-to solution where tact and diplomacy would work better. And neither does Bernie Sanders. And neither should you.

I really, really hope our country is better than to elect a crass, petulant, childish racist as our president. We deserve the consequences if we do.

Sunday Roast: Idiot America

How does anyone get out of primary school without knowing basic facts about our own country?  These people think they’re cute, but being so fucking stupid does not qualify as cuteness.

No wonder this country is in such deep shit.  So embarrassed…

This is our daily open thread — Get a clue, morans!!


The Watering Hole, Monday September 17, 2012 – Happy Constitution Day, Happy 225th USA v. 2.0

The Declaration of Independence was adopted in Congress on July 4, 1776, and for this reason it is generally considered that July 4 is our nation’s birthday. Actually, that was the birth of the United States of America Version 1.0. The first version of the United States was governed under something called The Articles of Confederation. The Articles were a States’ Rights person’s dream. Under the Articles, “Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and every Power, Jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in Congress assembled.” The Articles required that the thirteen colonies (now called “States”) would “severally enter into a firm league of friendship with each other, for their common defense, the security of their liberties, and their mutual and general welfare, binding themselves to assist each other, against all force offered to, or attacks made upon them, or any of them, on account of religion, sovereignty, trade, or any other pretense whatever.” In Congress, each State would have one vote, regardless of the number of delegates it sent there. There was one small problem. The Articles of Confederation didn’t work.

So, in May of 1787, a Constitutional Convention was convened. The delegates to the convention, many of them the same as those who adopted the Articles, recognized that things had changed and that their country would have to undergo some changes in order to adapt. Through the summer, they came up with a Constitution that had some significant differences with the Articles of Confederation. One of the most significant of these differences is that under the constitution, there would be a strong central government rather than a weak one. I believe this is the part most States’ Rights advocates do not wish to accept.

On September 17, 1787, the Congress passed the Constitution put forth by the convention. It was ratified on June 21, 1788 and when into effect March 4, 1789. Today marks the 225th Anniversary of the birth of what is, for all intents and purposes, the United States of America version 2.0. It’s not the same country founded in 1776, and is not based on the same principles as the first one. And no matter how religious the country and states were under Version 1.0, we have a Secular government under version 2.0. People may not be aware of this, nor be able to appreciate the marvel of it, but for the first time in history, a nation was founded with no official religion. In all other countries, the official religion was whatever religion the ruler of that country practiced, and most citizens were expected to support and practice that religion, also. Along came this upstart of a republic called the United States of America, and it had the crazy, unheard of idea that people could practice whichever religion they preferred, no matter what religion the President practiced. Personally, I would have preferred that the Constitution also specify that no person’s religious beliefs would be the basis of any Law in the United States. And I would have liked the gun thing clarified a bit more.

This is our open thread. Discuss the Constitution or any other topic you wish.

Cross-posted at Pick Wayne’s Brain

Sunday Roast: America is NOT the greatest country in the world, no matter how much you wish it were so.

I imagine The Newsroom could be (will be) one of those annoyingly self-righteous, self-satisfied shows, somewhat like the last few years of M*A*S*H*, but I think the point being made in the above video is valid and worth a bit of discussion.

As awful as things were for some people in this country when I was a kid — specifically, minorities and women — and still are awful in many ways, I think that, in some ways, we were better people back then.

We could work together as Americans back then, whether it was the Mom network on the block, or Democrats and Republicans voting together to pass things like the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, or the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Can you even begin to imagine those pieces of legislation being passed today?  Can you imagine any mother dragging home someone else’s kid, exclaiming to his mother, “You would not believe what I caught him doing!,” and not being sued into oblivion?

Right or wrong has little or nothing to do with what happens in Congress these days; it’s all down to the bottom line — the almighty dollar.  Even the Mom network has been destroyed by various levels of indifference, in addition to the almighty dollar.  We have become truly shitty people.

Our physical and moral infrastructures quite literally are crumbling before our eyes, but some of the 98% are worried sick about the “gays” getting married or the widdle unwanted babies being aborted, before they can get an opportunity to keep the little tykes out of daycare or off food stamps; some of us are worried about who got eliminated from Survivor or Dancing With the Stars — completely unfairly! — and the rest of us either literally do not give a shit (it doesn’t affect me or my family), or are pretty much at the point where we don’t know what the fuck to do.

For a while there, we flirted with “peace, love, and caring for one another,” but that stuff is really hard.  It takes time and money, and what the hell, it’s easier to feel hate and resentment anyway.

We’re a country chock full o’ “self made men,” who never wanted, needed, or asked for help from anyone — self-sufficient from the time they left the womb!  They made money all by themselves, and they damn well are going to keep it — Jesus said they could.  Somewhere or other.  They are easy fodder for the Ayn Rand philosophy of “I got mine, so fuck you, assholes.”

We’re a nation of stupid, ideologically-driven fucks, who haven’t the common sense or good grace to realize that we’re viewed as a nation of morons and clowns.  But hey, at least we’re number one at it, right?

I want that old American attitude back.  I want us to know our neighbors’ names; I want some variation of the Mom network back — they were some crazy mean bitches sometimes, but we felt safe, didn’t we?; I want us to be able to send our kids to school, knowing that they’re going to learn how to think, not just take CYA tests, and will learn things that are based in history and fact; and I want us to care about and for each other again.

Sure, there have always been bad apples, and there always will be, but the bad apples have risen to the top, and they have way too much power over the rest of us.  In this country, money has become the symbol of goodness, authority, and intelligence — even if it’s completely wrong — and they’ve managed to drain off almost all of the money in the last 30+ years, so we tend to feel powerless.

When you feel powerless, it’s easy to hate.  It’s easy to become an army of unredeemed Renfields for the 2% — I’m looking at you, teabaggers.  It’s easy to see what’s on the teevee tonight.  It’s really really hard to love; it’s hard to understand and care for each other, but that’s exactly what we need right now — peace, love, and caring for one another.

I have no idea of how to get to that point, really I don’t, but I do know this:  We cannot fix the ills of this country individually; we cannot be “self made martyrs” to the cause — it doesn’t work!!

We have to do this together.  It’s essential that we do so, for the good of this country and all her people — whether they like it or not.  If we can’t find a way to work together, we will have to go around the Renfields and the nay-sayers, and over the top of the 2% — there are more of us than there are of them.  We can do this thing!  Even though we have stumbled badly, and we’ve broken nearly every bone we have, this country absolutely can rise to the top again, I believe that.

We can do it.  But will we do it?  What are we made of these days?  What’s on teevee…?

This is our daily open thread — Discuss.

Hail, Hail, America

Lyrics by Insidiousprophet and posted with permission.

Hail, hail America,
Land of such greed,
Owned by corporations,
The bankers and Wall Street….

Unemployment in the millions,
Our jobs shipped overseas,
Wage war on the middle class,
The homeless fill the streets….

Represent the lobbyists,
Bailing out the banks,
Throw money at the war machine,
To wage war instead of peace….

Hail, hail America,
Land of the deceived,
Send our troops to foreign lands,
To die for corporate greed….

Tax cuts for the wealthy,
Austerity for the rest,
Pushed to the brink of poverty,
They cry out in protest….

Citizens united,
Death to democracy,
The black robes have decided,
The fascists smile with glee….

Hail, hail America….
Hail, hail America….
Hail, hail America….
Hail, hail America….

From the desk of Hoodathunk: Just Add Water

Story Time

Many years ago one had to put water in a pan, wait for it to boil and then add rolled oats.  After stirring for a bit (I’m not quite old enough to remember how long it took) you would get oatmeal.  Then Quaker came along with Quick Quaker Oats.  Essentially the same preliminaries, they just cooked in a couple of minutes.  Then, thanks to NASA, the microwave was born and

making oatmeal could be done in a single bowl in about two minutes.  And oatmeal is only the tip of the iceberg.  Since the 60’s the US has been hell bent on bringing K rations to the American table in the name of saving time.  It certainly can’t be because veterans so loved the things that they missed them.

Seriously, it was the birth of the movement to make Americans slaves to time.  They have slowly but surely sold the idea that we need to pack as much as we can into every waking moment, efficiently using every second to maximize our return on our time investment.  Work, where this greedy monster was born, obviously led the way.  We can thank ole Henry Ford for that one.  While this concept has some very valid and useful points, the problem came when it became the sole reason, the dictator of business operation — maximized throughout with the enhanced bottom line.  Yeah, baby, that will make your business thrive, providing management also takes into consideration the fact that the people who do the work are not just another piece of machinery.

That is the part that has been taken out of the equation over the past 30 years:  People are not machines.  Nor do machines totally run themselves.  Nor can machines do everything.  The respect for the efforts of labor has been degraded to the point where it is treated like a commodity.  If you don’t like working here, you can and will be replaced.  And with the population rising and the number of jobs falling it is true.  Someone can always be found who is so desperate for a job that they are willing to do just about anything to put food on the table. Continue reading


Cross-posted from Hoodathunk’s blog Story Time, Steps is a thoughtful follow-up to his recent post, What Made America Famous (which includes Harry Chapin’s great song of the same title).

It’s time to see what America is made of…will we accept the needed 12-step program to recovery?  Or as Lynyrd Skynyrd would say, “Gimme three steps toward the door?”

What life is all about…steps.  They come in all sizes, from baby to giant and they can go up or down.  Generally speaking, they are how things get done.  You don’t dump a bunch ingredients in a bowl and suddenly have cookies.  And you don’t make or break a country in one fell swoop.  Americans have something of a tradition for being impatient, even arrogant enough to think that steps don’t always apply to them but it isn’t true.  We are where we are today because we have been slowly led in a series of steps to the point where we have been desensitized to the actual steps of change.

Our education system has been tinkered with to the point where we are no longer producing individuals capable of cognitive thinking.  Our economic system has been stripped of needed regulation that once existed.  Environmental policies have been

removed to allow profits, undoing years of real progress in making our country a place heading towards a sustainable ecosystem while business could still function.  Our moral/ethical values have been undermined with a continuous barrage of incidents of increasingly bad behavior promoted as entertainment.  And our political system has just flat out gone into the toilet.  Bribery has morphed into a practice that actually defines how our Congress works.  And the cherry on the sundae is that racism and bigotry still exists to a greater degree than any thinking American believed.

We have a pretty ugly and bleak picture for where America is today.  We are no longer in even the top ten for standard of living and we only have ourselves to blame.  Along about 1980, America started to drink.  We imbibed the heady brew of exceptionalism.  We started on a course of consumerism that quickly turned into a binge.  In the 90’s we had a bit of a respite but it disappeared when we had a President who told us in response to the first major foreign terrorist attack on our country…go shopping.  He and his compatriots handed over the keys to the liquor store while they stood back and raked in the profits. Continue reading

An Open Letter To “White America”

This is not a white country.  It was not founded to be a white country, nor a Christian country.  The founding fathers were a mix of Christians and non-Christians (second more detailed source).  Most notably, Washington, Jefferson, Madison, and Franklin were all well outside mainstream Christian thinking during their day.  Jefferson went so far as the create his own version of the Bible in which he removed all of Jesus’ miracles. James Madison was quoted as saying, “Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise.”


“During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution.

This country was established on the principles and values of the Enlightenment, which were most often at odds with the beliefs of Christianity during their time.

This is not now, nor has it ever been a Christian country.  White culture is not synonymous with American culture, and the simple fact that you don’t like to be called racists doesn’t make your racism any less real.  Seriously, a very sizeable chunk of the GOP base refuses to belief that our president was born in this country, despite a total lack of evidence to suggest otherwise versus a birth certificate, newspaper announcement, and the word of the current Governor of his state that he was in fact born there.  Guess what?  That’s racism at worst, blind, hateful partisanism at best.  You have no reason to hold on to your lunatic ravings other than your pre-existing hatred for our current president.

As for the tea-bagger town hall protests, while the individual citizens showing up to drown out the basic necessity of reasoned discussion between Congressional leaders and their consituents — how anti-Democratic can you get? — do represent some segment of “real Americans,” so too do the overwhelming majorities of participants who are simply looking to be informed on the details of the health care plan, and the reasons their representatives are supporting it.  Despite what some on the Right like to claim, shutting down townhall meetings is not in the least democratic, and in fact, is a tactic dating back to the earliest Communist uprisings in Russia.  Just so you know the company you’re in.

The only thing I’m learning from all this is that this movement is hysterical, and wildly misinformed to the point of being unconcerned with the objective reality most of us reside in.

Welfare and the Pursuit of Happiness

This is an excerpt from an essay I’ve written in 1988 for a political theory seminar at Munich’s Ludwig-Maximilians-University. The whole thesis is 30 pages and I surely will not bore you with all of that. That means, however, I will have to leave out the many quotes and make it an abstract.

I reanimated the essay in the first place, because there is such a gap between how we Europeans feel about public welfare and the way it’s almost demonized by many Americans. The current discussion about health care in the US obviously stresses the discrepancy.

The starting point for the analysis was looking at two expressions. “Welfare” and “The Pursuit of Happiness.” Both terms play a major role in the French and the American revolutions. How come they mean such different things?

The French Revolution was sparked by unbearable social injustice. People were starving and the aristocracy wallowed in pleasures. Here the writings of the enlightenment fell on fertile ground. And the call for reform grew louder and louder but in the end the monarchy wasn’t reforming quickly enough, if it ever was reformable at all. The Revolution brought on the first test of the  enlightenment’s ideas practical merits.

The concepts of welfare and happiness had merged increasingly in the political theories of the 18th century in France. Individual happiness was soon considered equal to the liberty of gaining property and thus prosperity. Finally there grew an understanding that those, who were not capable of supporting themselves needed to be provided with work, or when unable to work, needed to be alimented.

Jean Jacques Rousseau the protagonist of  happiness as the foundation of  any society asked for the promotion of general happiness by ensuring equality not only in rights but in “indulgencies,” too. For him, happiness was an emotional phenomenon which couldn’t be codified but he defined the happiness of a society as the sum of the happiness of  her individuals. So he called on the rulers to “Make the people happy!” Property as a means to happiness was for him an unavoidable fact, but on the other hand, the root to all evil.

While these and other theories didn’t require a change in regime yet — Necker and Turgot two finance ministers of Louis XVI tried some reform of the monarchy partly along those lines — Antoine Marquis de Condorcet went a step further. He already propagated a form of insurance, designed to protect workers from misery. And he demanded free of charge public schooling to fight the inequality in education which was at the root of  the poverty of the masses.

The French pre-revolutionary society was still an agrarian feudal system and thus wealth was equal to the possession of land. So, to cure the moral consequences of inequality, more even-handedness of the distribution of property was necessary. While Rousseau and Montesquieu were still focusing on allaying the consequences of the existing system, the rather obscure French philosopher Abbé Morelly broke entirely with it. No one was to own more than he needed and everybody was to be employed and alimented by the state.  Education had to be aimed at erasing the concept of individual property.

Welfare and well-being were ultimately defined as economic well-being and thus only the elimination of social inequality would be the road to general happiness.

Consequentially the Declaration of  the Rights of Man and Citizen (1789) and the French Constitution of 1791 showed provisions which accepted the social responsibilities of the state. Soon in 1793 a much more radical constitution indicated the shifts in power from the moderate Montagnards to the more radical Jacobins. Society now was deemed responsible for not only moderating inequality but for actively disposing of it.  Two years later, however, after the fall of the Sans Culottes the constitution of 1795 did away with all that and marked temporarily the end of social justice as a foundation of society.

But the idea of economic equality never went away again. Most Europeans cherish the security a welfare state (no it is not necessarily a cuss-word here) provides.

The situation in North America was different. While a quite densely populated France couldn’t provide for it’s people anymore, a whole continent was at the disposal of the American pioneer settlers, to explore and exploit.

The political writings of American revolutionaries work much more along the line of lex naturalis. They based their political theories on the assumption that man surrenders a certain amount of liberties to a civil government in exchange of protection against the possible cruelties of life. As the “state of nature” in which no one is subject to anybody is the state of perfect liberty and independence, the assignation of parts of those liberties forms a contract. The English King had broken his contract and thus gave Americans the right to rebel. The American Revolution was much more a fight for political liberty than a struggle for economic equality and focused on the premise that being given the liberty to attain wealth and the protection of property  is in itself sufficient to ensure equal chances for success. The Pursuit of Happiness is part of man’s natural make-up and so the helping hand of a civil government is not called for.

America today, however is not the America of the pioneers. The country is densely populated and the wealth the country has to give has already been distributed a long time ago. Not unlike in France in the 18th century there is an upper class, almost aristocratic in its demeanor, and a dwindling middle class on the verge of losing their ability to fare for themselves. And there are a huge number of poor which are virtually excluded from the American Dream.

What do you think? Is it time to rethink the ideas of the French philosophers and put those to the test?

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A Modest Proposal Redux

The economy is tumbling.  Americans are suffering.  Nearly 50 million of us don’t have health care.  College education provides little in terms of job opportunity while mounting the average American with massive debt.  After much deliberation, I’ve devised a modest proposal to set right again the ship that is our nation.

Have you ever seen that movie “Logan’s Run”?  I’m not suggesting we kill anyone over the age of thirty, but let’s be honest, do we really need more than 70 years on this planet?  We could rein in health care costs, open new jobs, and provide much needed organs for those of us who have more years ahead.

Sure, maybe we could raise taxes by two percentage points on those who make millions of dollars, but politically, that’s a climb uphill — those uber-wealthy Americans obviously deserve every penny they earn, which is why we should target our efforts at a demographic no one cares about.

If you have a mother, grandmother, or other elderly relative who you are looking to dispose of, then please, donate their bodies (living or dead) to the U.S. government.  Not only can we teach future doctor’s with them, but we can then take their most valuable organs and use those funds to plug the hole in our national budget.

In short, we simply must cease to give way to the political obstructions that prevent us from using our own citizens remains for the benefit of our national economy.

If we’re so willing to send our young and brightest talent to die on foreign battlefields, then what is the hold up of taking the assets of those who’ve yet to sacrifice to their nation’s military?

So I say to you, America, now is the time to sell off our geriatric division in order to pay for those programs we need now.  Health care, education, and the environment.

Repeat with me: Yes We Can!

The 10 Most Influential Columnists in America

Mediaite ranks the top ten most influential columnists in America. Can’t say I’m happy to see Michelle Malkin and Maureen Dowd ranked so high, but I do find it interesting that many of these journalists are left of center even if some — Thomas Friedman — are total idiots:

1. Paul Krugman

2. Thomas Friedman

3. Maureen Dowd

4. Michelle Malkin

5. Christopher Hitchens

6. Malcolm Gladwell

7. Charles Krauthammer

8. Mark Bitman

9. Ariana Huffington

10. Glenn Greenwald

A Whole Mess…

…of Stupid. Yessiree, Bob. Been makin it right here in America for bout 50 year. Mebbe longer but we didn’t git serious bout it til real recent. Took us that long to sneak up on folks so’s they didn’t git all riled up. Yessir, been



dumbing folks down little bit at a time and sellin em pie-in-the-sky so now they got doodly squat in their pockets and fer some, less than that in their heads.

Sort a like you comin in this here cafe and orderin yogurt and fruit and a bran muffin. And now yer complaining cuz I set down one of the finest plates of biscuits and gravy ever served. Lemme tell you, bud, ole Cookie, he was a cook in the Army and our boys dearly loved his biscuits and gravy so you best just pipe down and support the troops. Heckfire, I know you didn’t order it but its your patriotic duty to eat what gets put in front of you.

What’s that? Well, I guess you could take your bizness elsewhere. My cousin Billy owns the next place down the street and Aunt Lou has a diner in the next town so you might git something different there. Doubt it though. See, we done figgered out that if everybody gits fed the same, they come to ’spect it. Boy howdy, ain’t it jest grand how you can go jest about anywhere’s in the whole US of A and find you the zact same food waitin fer ya? Same clothes, same groceries, same jest about everything. See, we done figgered it was too damn hard on folks if they had to go and think about makin choices, we just set things up so’s they’d be made fer em so’s folks could git on with the important stuff like where ta spend a car payment on a night out jest a pushin ‘n shovin to listen to some clown sing or watch a buncha folks chase a ball around.

Now don’t you go gitting all upset about them sick folks who cain’t git health care. If God didn’t want them to be sick, they wouldn’t be. Sides, if they had more gumption they’d be takin care of their own selves. And you jest know God knows what he’s talkin bout, ’specially since he’s done got him so many people gitting paid big money to git his word out.

Aw, now you done let yer food git cold. No nevermind, we got a whole messa stupid jest awaiting to dish out. Maybe we cain’t sell it to furriners but we done got us a real captive market right here at home.

~Written by our bloggy friend Medjhiesco.  For more of his writing, visit his blog here.