Sunday, September 30, 2012

Feeling sluggish today

So I thought a little Grace Potter & The Nocturnals. would get the blood flowing properly.

He was for clean energy before he was against it

But now that Mitt the Twit is getting big money from Big Oil and not from Big Green, he has gone all "drill baby drill" in his speeches.
Today, as the Republican nominee for president, Mr. Romney is far more apt to talk about oil drilling than energy-efficient cars. He has presented a plan to open up more land and coastline to oil and gas drilling, grant speedy approval to the Keystone pipeline to transport crude oil from Canada to the United States, end wind and solar power subsidies and curb regulations that discourage burning coal for electricity. It is an agenda far different from the one he outlined in his early days as governor.

He populated his Massachusetts administration with environmentalists, including one, Gina McCarthy, who now runs the clean air division of the Environmental Protection Agency under President Obama. He railed against the “Filthy Five,” high-polluting power plants in the state. He issued a “climate protection plan” and lauded it as “among the strongest in our nation.” Under his direction, Massachusetts helped create a regional cap-and-trade program — anathema to most Republicans — intended to cut the greenhouse gas emissions that scientists believe cause global warming.

But at the last minute, Mr. Romney refused to sign the greenhouse gas pact that his aides had spent more than two years negotiating; industry opposed it, and some former Romney policy advisers say his political team feared that it would doom his chances for the presidency. A current campaign policy adviser, Oren Cass, said Mr. Romney simply evaluated the proposal and “concluded the costs imposed on the economy would be too high.”

Today in Massachusetts, environmentalists credit Mr. Romney with helping to promote smart growth and reducing air pollution by putting in place tough regulations curbing certain toxic emissions from power plants. They also praise him for signing into law a bill embracing oil spill prevention measures. But many feel betrayed by his surprise reversal on the climate change pact.

“He was ahead of his time and very progressive,” said Jack Clarke, who was appointed to an ocean management task force by Mr. Romney and now directs public policy at Mass Audubon, a conservation group. “But by the end of his administration, he seemed to have gotten Potomac fever. The conservation agenda he had didn’t seem to be a core conviction.”
We now know that Mitt has no core convictions beyond his own sense of entitlement. Still it is interesting to see how the Twit threw overboard all his previous guiding 'principles' in his efforts to keep up with the Republican Party's mad dash to insanity.

Judge uses Mosaic Law to decide case

Right wing nut jobs
make a good living hallooing around the country about Sharia Law being imposed by our court system. It is doubtful that any of them will say anything about the imposition of Mosaic Law upon Oklahoma by a judge recently.
The American Civil this week sought to overturn an Oklahoma County judge’s decision to prohibit a transgender woman from changing her legally recognized name.
Liberties Union
James Dean Ingram, who lives as a woman, requested to change her name to Angela Renee Ingram. But District Judge Bill Graves denied the name-change, claiming it was “fraudulent.” In a similar case last year, Graves cited the Biblical book of Genesis and expert testimony to conclude that “the DNA code shows God meant for them to stay male and female.”
So according to this Oklahoma mook, the religious law of one bunch of flea bitten desert boogers is OK but not the religious laws of another bunch of flea bitten desert boogers. A very good reason why god has no place in the law of the land.

A milestone in Shitholeistan

From the Guardian:
An Afghan soldier has killed two Americans and two fellow members of Afghanistan's army at a checkpoint in the east of the country.

The shooting continues the trend of "insider attacks" and marks the 2,000th US troop death in the long-running war, officials said.

The series of insider attacks is one of the greatest threats to Nato's mission in Afghanistan, endangering a partnership key to training Afghan security forces and withdrawing international troops.

Saturday's shooting took place at an Afghan army checkpoint just outside a joint US-Afghan base in Wardak province, said Shahidullah Shahid, a provincial government spokesman. At least two Afghan soldiers also died, he said.

"Initial reports indicate that a misunderstanding happened between Afghan army soldiers and American soldiers," Shahid said.
More lives wasted to no good end. How long will this be going on?

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Rock out on Saturday Night

With some 1957 rockabilly from Billy Lee Riley

Oh, that's where I left my gun.

As the NRA continues to press its retail driven anarchy upon state firearms laws, many more people are being reminded where they left their pistols at the airport TSA checkpoint.
The list of potentially lethal weapons was certainly eye-opening: 47 guns (38 of them loaded, including six with rounds in their chambers), three inert hand grenades, supplies of black powder, hunting knives, timing fuses and a sword.

Then, consider that the list was compiled by the Transportation Security Administration, of weapons found in airline travelers’ carry-on bags in the seven days that ended on Sept. 20.

In fact, the T.S.A. says the number of guns found at airport security checkpoints has been steadily rising for the last couple of years. Through Friday, 1,105 guns have been found this year, a pace that is higher than last year’s. In 2011, the total was 1,320, up from 1,123 in 2010, the agency says.

Security experts attribute the increase to two factors: a rise in gun sales and the sharp growth of so-called right-to-carry laws across the country that significantly relax regulations on carrying guns in many areas of public life, from colleges to hospitals.

Invariably, according to the T.S.A., travelers at airports with guns in their carry-on bags say they simply forgot they had them. “It’s almost always inadvertent rather than intentional,” said David Castelveter, a spokesman for the agency
As gun laws are relaxed to the point of being casual, the attitude towards firearms will as well. And that is asking for trouble.

The politics of White and Others

Many years ago, during the reign of Richard Nixon when nothing was wrong if the president did it, the Republican Party made its first appeals to the racists that were abandoning the Democrats in the wake of civil rights legislation. Over the years it has become a certainty that if you are a racist, you are a Republican. With the addition of the Teabaggers, the racist element has become more open and vocal until, with this election, they are no longer hiding their true nature.
The Republicans have dropped all pretenses that this presidential race isn’t about race. And they’ve brought in the suit and tie set in playing the dirtiest card in the political deck. Hyperbole and unrelenting criticism are part and parcel of both parties opposition to whoever is the current occupant of the White House, Democrat or Republican. Lord knows, G.W. came in for his deserved share. But, in their desperation, the Republicans have blown by hyperbole and criticism into the disgusting world of pure, unadulterated and undisguised racism.
To paraphrase John Stuart Mill, Not all Republican are racist, but all racists are Republican.

An explanation for why people vote Republican.

Its simple, really.

Quote of the Day

The albatross around Romney's neck is not so much his wealth or his social skills. It is modern conservatism that has sunk his campaign, and would have sunk any other this year.
Bill Scher, pinpointing the fatal flaw in Mitt's campaign.

Look! A new way to screw workers.

Sears and Darden Restaurants
have announced that they are changing their health plans from defined benefit format to defined contribution.
As WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports, Sears Holdings Corp., headquartered in Hoffman Estates, and Darden Restaurants Inc., which owns the Olive Garden and Red Lobster chains, reportedly are making a radical change that will be watched closely by other employers.

The Wall Street Journal reports the companies will give employees a fixed amount of money, then let them choose their health insurance from an online marketplace.

The Journal says it is comparable to the transition from company-provided pensions to 401(k) retirement savings plans controlled by workers with contributions from employers.
And as with the transition from pensions to 401ks, the workers will be screwed. There is no guarantee that the funds provided will pay for a health plan to the same extent that companies currently do. And where HR staff could help and advise employees, they will become a thing of the past with the responsibility for knowing all about insurance falling on the workers. We know how well that worked with pensions.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Jazz Night in the District

Holly Cole from her 1997 album, singing an old favorite.

Macbeth on Mitt the Twit

By way of Martin Bashir

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Referees make all the difference

From the pen of Tom Toles.

In the Senate, a coward hides behind anonymity

One of the things most members of Congress agree on is the COLA for disabled veterans and surviving spouses. This year there is one son of a bitch who has put an anonymous hold on the passage of the necessary legislation.
According to Sen. Patty Murray, an anonymous Senate Republican is blocking a cost of living increase for America’s disabled veterans.

A Republican senator is using an anonymous hold to block the traditionally bipartisan cost of living adjustment that is given to America’s disabled veterans and their survivors.
Why would any Senator do this? In this election year, how hard do you have to look?
There is no good reason why disabled vets and surviving children and spouses should be denied a cost of living adjustment. The political reason is that Senate Republicans don’t want to give President Obama a “win” before the November election, so they have decided harm a group of people who have sacrificed for their country.

The Senate Republican leadership agreed with the anonymous request because they only care about defeating Obama. They don’t care about disabled veterans, and the families those who have died for their country left behind. For Senate Republicans, it’s all about politics. How can they hurt Obama? How can make America like Obama less? How can they make Obama look like a bad president? These questions have defined the congressional Republican course of action.

Instead of making Obama look bad, this Senate Republican has demonstrated to voters why the GOP shouldn’t be returned to the majority. To at least one senate Republican disabled vets and survivors’ benefits don’t matter to Senate Republicans. All that matters is defeating Barack Obama.

This Senate Republicans knows what he is doing is wrong. The senator who put the hold on the bill could have had his name entered into the public record by raising his objection on the Senate floor. Instead, this one coward has decided to hide behind a procedural rule while denying millions of veterans and their families a cost of living adjustment.

The Senate Republican who did this, and the leadership that is quietly standing behind him are cowards.
What more can you say except call your Senator and curse the coward doing this.

Honey Boo Boo Season Finale Crushes Fox News in the Ratings

Not just the show opposite Honey Boo Boo but better ratings than the entire Fux Nooz prime time line up combined.
Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public. - H.L.Mencken

Now that their criminal activities have been uncovered

They are of no more use to the Republican/Teabaggers and they are cut loose. They are not thrown under the bus because they may yet be of use at a later date. Unless someone gets off their ass and prosecutes Strategic Allied Consulting for fraudulent voter registration.
The North Carolina Republican Party has fired the shady voter registration firm owned by Mitt Romney's paid political consultant and longtime GOP operative, Nathan Sproul. The firing came as Democrats in the state were on the brink of denouncing the Republicans' tie to the operative's firm.

The state GOP joins the Republican Party of Florida, which also fired Sproul's company (who accounted for the party's largest 2012 expenditure, some $1.3 million over the last two months) after more than 100 apparently fraudulent voter registration forms were turned over to the FL State Attorney in Palm Beach County on Monday for investigation. The BRAD BLOG first reported the emerging story in detail on Tuesday .

The firm, Strategic Allied Consulting, is the latest creation of Sproul, a longtime, high-level GOP operative whose companies --- including Sproul & Associates and Lincoln Strategy Group --- have been accused of destroying Democratic voter registration forms and changing information on them in election after election, in state after state, year after year. He was hired for similar operations by Bush/Cheney in '04, by McCain/Palin in '08 and by Mitt Romney's
There is a disadvantage to looking forward. But the real question is whether Romney will cut loose his adviser Nathan Sproul?

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Another young singer songwriter

Bursting on the music scene after ten years of hard work. This is from the latest album of the same name by Anais Mitchell.

Voila! Mets Dickey is a 20 game winner, 1st since Viola.

And a well earned congratulations to the old knuckleballer. Your teammates sure made you wait long enough.

If you have been paying attention

By now you know that Republican/Teabaggers and,indeed, all Conservatives in the US live by their own set of facts that are generally impervious to reality. Those fact sets also apply to history. Jack Hitt, writing in the New Yorker has compiled a timeline of important dates in Republican/Teabagger history. Here are a few as an appetizer.
1500s: The American Revolutionary War begins: “The reason we fought the revolution in the sixteenth century was to get away from that kind of onerous crown.”—Rick Perry

1607: First welfare state collapses: “Jamestown colony, when it was first founded as a socialist venture, dang near failed with everybody dead and dying in the snow.”—Dick Armey

1775: New Hampshire starts the American Revolution: “What I love about New Hampshire… You’re the state where the shot was heard around the world.”—Michele Bachmann

1776: The Founding Synod signs the Declaration of Independence: “…those fifty-six brave people, most of whom, by the way, were clergymen.”—Mike Huckabee

1787: Slavery is banned in the Constitution: “We also know that the very founders that wrote those documents worked tirelessly until slavery was no more in the United States.”—Michele Bachmann

1801: “Thomas Jefferson creates the Marines for the Islamic pirates that were happening.”—Glenn Beck
You don't need to be a historian to weep at the Stupid.

Samuel L Jackson, Keepin' it Real

R.I.P. Herbert Lom

Case closed Chief Inspector Dreyfuss.

What you get when you don't prosecute torture

You get a real possibility that the next Republican/Teabagger president will embrace it with all the fervor of a Gestapo interrogator. Because having tortured with out penalty, the US no longer has any inhibitions or enforceable prohibitions against it if the executive so decides.
In one of his first acts, President Obama issued an executive order restricting interrogators to a list of nonabusive tactics approved in the Army Field Manual. Even as he embraced a hawkish approach to other counterterrorism issues — like drone strikes, military commissions, indefinite detention and the Patriot Act — Mr. Obama has stuck to that strict no-torture policy.

By contrast, Mr. Romney’s advisers have privately urged him to “rescind and replace President Obama’s executive order” and permit secret “enhanced interrogation techniques against high-value detainees that are safe, legal and effective in generating intelligence to save American lives,” according to an internal Romney campaign memorandum.
Enhanced interrogation, two of the meanest, cruelest words ever devised by a dick like Cheney. And if Romney wins, a cinch to become national policy.

Forget about Sharia Law

It's those damnable mackerel snappers that want to impose their religious law on this country of ours. And they are no longer hiding it, but openly calling for the imposition of canon law over the Constitution that millions of Americans have fought and died to protect.
A Catholic bishop from Springfield, Illinois is warning that the stakes for the 2012 election are even higher than most people think because voting for President Barack Obama could damn “you own soul” to hell.

In a column and video posted by the official newspaper of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois and obtained by Right Wing Watch on Wednesday, Bishop Thomas John Paprocki called out the Democratic Party for temporarily removing God from their platform, supporting abortion and recognizing that “gay rights are human rights.”
Sure he says he is not telling you who to vote for, but what practicing mackerel snapper wants to go to Hell just for a vote? And the bishop even goes so far as to bear false witness on record.
I have read the Republican Party Platform and there is nothing in it that supports or promotes an intrinsic evil or a serious sin,
Sure, Jesus would be the first to eliminate health care, SNAP, Social Security and other elements of the safety net in favor of increased unnecessary defense spending. No self respecting bishop can dare do any less.

Colbert finds the true cause of the bacon shortage.

The Colbert Report
Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,Political Humor & Satire Blog,Video Archive

Is our long national nightmare finally over?

Probably not yet but the increasing numbers of signs pointing that way can only encourage people working to bring the light of day back to America. One positive sign is the increasing awareness the the Republican/Teabaggers don't even attempt to work for their voters anymore.
Most Americans would like to believe their representatives in government are looking out for their interests, and although they may have a specific cause that is unique to them, they at least expect legislators to work for the people. Politicians have the difficult task of considering all their constituents needs, and often, special interests feel their representatives are not supporting their cause but, as a rule, Americans are intelligent enough to understand they are not the center of the world. Since the start of the 112th Congress, Republicans have demonstrated to the entire country that they have no interest in supporting the American people or protecting their interests unless they are extremely wealthy, the energy industry, or religious extremists. With only a few weeks to go before the general election, polls are showing growing support for President Obama and Democrats, and in part it is because of Willard Romney, but it is equally likely that the American people who are not racists or religious extremists realize Republicans are not on their side.

Republicans have spent the past year-and-a-half obstructing progress this country needs to grow and prosper while working feverishly to eliminate programs Americans depend on. Many pundits claim the tea party is responsible for pushing Republicans to extremist positions, and there is some validity to that assumption, but the Republican ticket of Romney and Ryan verified to many Americans that the entire GOP adopted an extremist agenda based on racism, misogyny, greed, and hate. It is unclear if Republicans care about, or fail to understand, the American people, but they have miscalculated the decency of most Americans.
The arrogance of the Republican/Teabaggers has them doing in public what they previously kept secret in darkened back rooms. And the light of day shining on them has a salutary effect on the voting public who are increasing theor support for Obama and the Democrats because of it.

Ralph Reed rears his ugly head again

Ralph Reed, one of the slickest religious hustlers we have ever seen, was last seen humping clients for soon to be convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff. After disappearing to let the heat die down, God's Own Bagman is back and hitting the feebleminded ones on his calling list with a load of lies.
Intent on making good on his post-2008 election promise [3] to "never get out-hustled on the ground again," Ralph Reed, who leads the right-wing Faith and Freedom Coalition, this week unveiled the organization's ostensibly "non-partisan" presidential election voter guide, which will be inserted into church bulletins throughout the nine battleground states in which the November election will be won or lost.
In his Christian education, though, apparently Reed never learned that it's a sin to tell a lie. His voter guide contains three big ones, in its characterizations of President Barack Obama's positions on Medicare, environmental regulation and abortion.

Reed's voter guides resemble the handbills distributed by the Christian Coalition in the 1990s, at that time delivered by that quaint operation known as the U.S. Postal Service, when Reed ran the organization for the Rev. Pat Robertson.

While the Faith and Freedom Coalition says it will mail 2 million of the hard-copy version to churches and social conservative voters, it's also invested in high-tech methods of delivery, services provided by a subsidiary of Reed's own for-profit consulting firm [4], Century Strategies. (When I reported on the relationship between Reed's non-profit Faith and Freedom Coalition and Century Strategies, Reed did not return my phone calls requesting information on whether or not he was personally profiting from the arrangement.)
That's our Ralphie, still humping the rubes. And he has never yet met a false witness he couldn't bear.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

One of the few good things to come from Richard Thompson

This newgrass trio took their name from the girlfriend in Thompson's "1952 Vincent Black Lightning.". And they do the sweetest sounding cover of this Dolly Parton tune.

They cut all ties, after the fraud has been discovered

Brad Blog
has a look at one of the many hydra heads of Republican/Teabagger election fraud that has been found in the state of Florida.
The Republican Party of Florida's top recipient of 2012 expenditures, a firm by the name of Strategic Allied Consulting, was just fired on Tuesday night, after more than 100 apparently fraudulent voter registration forms were discovered to have been turned in by the group to the Palm Beach County, FL Supervisor of Elections.

The firm appears to be another shell company of Nathan Sproul, a longtime, notorious Republican operative, hired year after year by GOP Presidential campaigns, despite being accused of shredding Democratic voter registration forms in a number of states over several past elections.

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Strategic Allied Consulting has been paid some $667,000 this year by the FL GOP, presumably to run its voter registration campaigns in the state. That number, however, does not account for another identical payment made in August. The Palm Beach Post is reporting tonight that the firm received "more than $1.3 million" from the Republican Party of Florida "to register new voters."

The firm is not only tied to the FL GOP, but also to the Mitt Romney Campaign, which hired Sproul as a political consultant late last year, despite years of fraud allegations against his organizations in multiple states.

Moreover, the firm is also reportedly operating similar voter registration operations on behalf of the Republican Party, to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars, in a number of key battleground states this year, including North Carolina, Virginia and Colorado. Strategic Allied has recently taken steps to hide their ownership by Sproul's notorious firm, Sproul & Associates.
If only there were an Attorney General, somewhere, who could put this fraudster behind bars.

No more dimwits & numbnuts for you, Mitt

From the pen of Tom Toles

R.I.P. Andy Williams

Time to close the show, you had a good run.

The Only Good Afghan Is A Dead Afghan

While US military policy in Shitholeistan has not advanced to that point yet, the mistrust of US troops around armed Afghans is palpable these days.
When American military advisers fly into Afghan Army outposts like the one nestled on the floor of this forested valley, they keep their body armor on and their weapons loaded.

Their guard was up even though they were there for a day of training Afghan soldiers without once leaving the confines of a fortified base — even when chatting with the Afghan officers over a lunch of goat meat and yogurt.

Afghan soldiers and police officers have gunned down 51 American and allied troops so far this year, and now no one is taking chances. The advisers’ extreme caution lays bare the steep challenge ahead after the official end of the American troop “surge” on Friday and as the mission shifts toward the next chapter of the war: preparing the Afghans to fight on their own...

Aside from a fear of being gunned down, the advisers said they were more vigilant because they also doubted the ability of Afghan soldiers to secure the base from an insurgent attack.

“Exhibit A,” one adviser noted about the Afghans’ nap in the guard tower.

“I think we need to be ready for everything. Maybe it’s coming from inside, or maybe it gets in here from the outside,” said the adviser, a young soldier who did not want to be identified for fear of damaging his career. “I mean, sleeping in a tower? There are a lot of reasons to be careful out here.”

By here, he meant behind high walls that American soldiers had built near Bad Pakh, in eastern Afghanistan, just a few years ago and guarded until handing the outpost over to the Afghan Army in March. Once home to Americans, it is now treated by them as another dangerous place in a hostile country.

And for good reason, judging by comments from Afghan soldiers here and elsewhere in the country.
It should be obvious to all but the most bloodthirsty that this mission has ended. The sooner we are out, the better.

Politics Makes Strange Bedfellows

And the Colorado Marijuana Ballot Initiative is another example of the truth of that maxim. Last week a most surprising Colorado politician came out in favor of the initiative.
In a little noticed op-ed published last week, former Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO) endorsed a voter-sponsored initiative to legalize marijuana in Colorado, saying his change of heart came “not despite my conservative beliefs, but because of them.”

“In many ways, marijuana prohibition is very similar to alcohol prohibition,” he wrote in The Colorado Springs Gazette. “Nowhere is this more apparent than in their impact on public safety.”

Tancredo’s editorial compares the booze-fueled organized crime of the prohibition era to the weed-fueled “narcoterrorists” in Mexico, who he said pose a dire threat to Americans and American business. “[By] keeping marijuana illegal for the last 75 years, we have created a black market that helps fuel some of the most dangerous terrorist organizations in the world,” he argued.
Tommy may be playing politics because the Democratic governor opposes the legalization but, as the little old lady who pissed in the ocean said, every little bit counts.

Study shows why Republican/Teabaggers hate contraception.

A new study has been released that reveals how women use contraception to control their lives and better provide for themselves and their families.
A recent study by the reproductive health and rights group the Guttmacher Institute confirms what many people have long known and suspected, that access to contraception helps women better care for themselves and their families, complete their education and achieve economic security and stability.

The study, titled “Reasons for Using Contraception: Perspectives of U.S. Women Seeking Care at Specialized Family Planning Clinics,” was authored by the Guttmacher Institute’s Jennifer Frost and Laura Lindberg, who, realizing that no comprehensive survey had been done of the reasons women use contraception, “surveyed 2,094 women receiving services at 22 family planning clinics nationwide.”

“Women value the ability to plan their childbearing, and view doing so as critical to being able to achieve their life goals,” wrote Lindberg. ”They need continued access to a wide range of contraceptives so they can plan their families and determine when they are ready to have children.”

According to the study, 63 percent of women surveyed said that contraceptives have a significant impact on their lives, and allow them to take better care of themselves and their families. Fifty-six percent said that being able to control their reproductive lives makes them better able to support themselves, while 51 percent said that contraception was important to helping them complete their education and 50 percent of the women said that access had made it easier for them to look for and find a job.
Allowing that degree of control over their lives is absolutely anathema to the misogynistic patriarchs of the Republican/Teabagger party and must be stopped. Putting the contraception genie back in the bottle would be a major victory in their War on Women.

About that prescription your Dr. gave you

Chances are very good that the ingredients were made overseas in India and China, in plants with minimal inspection and quality control.
Now here’s another snippet of information; 80% of the active pharmaceutical ingredients in medications sold here are manufactured elsewhere. You know where I saw that number? A Food and Drug Administration report, dear friends. That brings me back to Aurobindo and Wockhardt; India’s 5th and 13th largest drug ingredient and manufacturing facilities. Their plants make other pharmaceutical-related products as well. Over half of all medical devices some from over yonder.

There are about 600 such plants in China and around 300 in India. Most of your aspirin is made in China not to mention numerous other over-the-counter drug products. Aurobindo has 6 plants in India, 1 in the U.S. (Dayton, N.J.) and 1 in Brazil, mainly to serve Brazilian customers. Chances are at least two of your prescriptions came from one of the 6 plants in India considering costs for the huge pharmas are anywhere from 15 – 40% lower than in the U.S...

How many times the factories have been truly inspected is open to speculation. A few that require special attention for whatever quality reasons, attract some attention. There are others that haven’t been seen more than once or twice a decade, if at all. Nearly 8 out of 10 generics are manufactured overseas by those low-paid workers in China (a buck or so an hour) and India and several other countries. Indian factory owners are currently in a vicious battle with unions that are actually demanding a living wage for workers in assorted industries.

As for Chinese manufacturers, their appeal to the huge pharmaceutical companies can best be summed up in this Internet statement from Panjin Dmso Chemicals Co. Ltd. in the Liaoning Province: “Our product’s qualities are the best in China, also their prices are the lowest.” The company is named after their home city.

The Republicans want to cut funding for everything that doesn’t go boom or isn’t Koch-connected. The FDA is in desperate need of inspectors to hold Chinese and Indian meds manufacturers feet to the fire to avoid another deadly debacle like the 2008 contaminated Chinese-manufactured (contracted to Baxter) blood-thinning Heparin batches that killed 81 Americans officially, though estimates run into the hundreds. After-the-fact FDA inspections found numerous violations by the Chinese. As worrisome is the fact that numerous players in this tragedy remain in the industry.
Given that the Chinese have shown a willingness to poisonously adulterate their own milk and Big Pharma considers killing their own customers a "cost of doing business", you should have no expectation of using safe drugs anymore.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

He was so much more than Peanuts soundtrack

As good as that was, Vince Guaraldi was a jazz great. And one of his talents was making his music accesable to the public without sacrificing the jazz elements within that made it great. For the record, 'Eleanor Rigby' was the last song he ever played.

Scotty Brown is a racist pig

And in response to his slimy attacks and the "war whoops" & tomahawk chops of his Masshole staff members, she responds with this ad.

Now its getting personal.

From one Mormon to another. From the Raw Story:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) is ripping Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, insisting that the GOP hopeful is not the “face of Mormonism” and has “sullied” the religion that they both share.

During a conference call on Monday ahead of Romney’s visit to Nevada, Reid said he agreed with a blog post by Mormon historian Gregory Prince, who had blasted the candidate for insulting 47 percent of the country for refusing to take “personal responsibility” because they were “dependant” on the government.

“He’s coming to a state where there are a lot of members of the LDS Church,” the Majority Leader said, according to the Salt Lake Tribune. “They understand that he is not the face of Mormonism.”

“[Prince] said that Romney has sullied the religion that he, Prince, and Romney share,” Reid noted. “And he’s so disappointed that, in his words, ‘it’s a good religion and he’s hiding from it.’”
Being Mormons, they left God out of it but old Jos. Smith must be spinning in his grave.

Dirty Darrell Issa is a winner!

Everybody's favorite corrupt Republican/Teabagger has finally been acknowledged for his efforts. Rep. Dirty Darrell Issa has won the Dishonorable Mention in CREW's 8th annual Most Corrupt Members of Congress report. Will this be only the first in a series of awards for Conservative America's favorite crook?

Willard Mitt Romney, Mormon Explained

Rmuse has a post in Politicususa that show the importance of Joseph Smiths Mormon scam in the development of the charletan and mountebank running for president, Mitt the Shit Romney.
Throughout history and up to the present, there have been people who practice quackery or some similar confidence trick in order to obtain money, fame, or power through some form of pretense or deception. Whether they are called charlatans, swindlers, or mountebanks, these people often depend on ignorance and desperation to convince well-meaning people to part with their money or independence of thought, and more often than not, they use religion and greed to control their acolytes. In America, conservative ideology is tantamount to a religion that appeals to the weak-minded and faint of heart, and it is little wonder that a distinctly American religion started by a charlatan intersects perfectly with Republican ideology, and that the current Republican standard bearer, Willard Romney, is closely following the charlatan Joseph Smith’s agenda to convince Americans he should be the president.

If one stops and considers that Smith said an angel appeared and told him secret knowledge that prompted him to seek out golden plates engraved with a secret message, they may think anyone who believed him was insane. And yet, they believed it when, in the 19th Century, he translated the message using 17th Century language, and after losing the golden plates, re-translated what became the Book of Mormon. The idea that 21st Century Mormons believe the information in Joseph Smith’s translation that flies in the face of archeological, scientific, and historical evidence is proof that a charlatan can hold sway over any people as long as they have novel information and repeat it over and over again until even seemingly intelligent human beings accept fantasy as gospel truth. Crucial to Smith’s confidence trick, was referencing just enough of another established myth, the Christian bible, to convince his followers there was validity to his Latter Day prophecies, and subsequently, the Mormon church achieved legitimacy to its adherents.

Willard Mitt Romney learned the confidence game from Joseph Smith well, and he parlayed it into a career convincing financiers to hand over their wealth in hopes of becoming wealthier beyond their wildest dreams. Romney also convinced struggling companies that if they took on crushing debt, under Bain Capital’s management, they too would emerge as leaders of their industries and prosper if they followed Romney’s “creative destruction” method of wealth creation. Subsequently, companies faced bankruptcy, employees lost their jobs and retirement, and Romney the confidence man laughed all the way to the Cayman Islands and other offshore tax havens.

Now that Romney is campaigning for the presidency of the United States, he is using Joseph Smith’s tactic of citing historically fallacious mythos with promises of American dominance in world affairs and unrealistic economic possibilities that play well to ignorant and desperate Americans looking for a great white savior to usher in an era of wealth and prosperity. The similarities between the charlatan Smith’s scheme of prophetic fantasies and Romney’s vision of America are stunning, but instead of harkening back two thousand years, Romney is content to parrot the words of Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush in hopes he can convince enough Americans to fall for his confidence game.
Romney has the confidence game, but not the confidence in himself. He just isn't the equal of Joseph Smith nor are the times so favorable for his scam.

When you forswear telling the truth

You will try to establish your own set of facts. That is much harder.

Monday, September 24, 2012

How do you come clean

When you are dirty down to your soul, eh Mitt?

My two favorite singing brothers

Joe & Bobby Righteous

The Romney Gaffes you haven't heard.

Courtesy of the ever vigilant Tom Tomorrow. He listens so you don't have to.

Republican/Teabaggers have turned party into manure lagoon.

And as anybody who has been to a livestock farm can tell you, the manure lagoon is usually full of shit. According to AmericaBlog, this level in the lagoon has been confirmed by a study from George Mason University, a conservative center of mis-education in DC.
This study is from George Mason University, a lesser college in the Washington, DC area that is known as a hotbed of conservative activism. So take anything you ever hear from "GMU" with a huge grain of salt. Often there's a conservative bias, and funding stream, underlying folks from that university.

This study, by the self-proclaimed non-partisan "Center for Media and Public Affairs" - which has been accused of conservative ties in the past - finds that media fact-checkers found Mitt Romney and the GOP lied twice as much as Democrats. It's some coincidence that the study came out just a few weeks after the Republican party collectively decided that it's time to start tearing down fact-checkers.

In any case, the study found that the fact-checkers rated Romney and the GOP liars twice as much as they rated Dems as liars. While conservatives will surely say this is a sign of the fact-checkers' inherent bias, it's just as likely that fact-checkers are finding twice as often that the GOP lies because the GOP lies twice as often as Democrats do.
Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

Even more embarrassing than a live boy in their bed

Members of Congress
are afraid of their own record as they run for re-election. In light of the dismal history 'forced' on them by the Republican/Teabagger caucus, this is nor surprising on the Republican/Teabagger side.
Bragging about one’s voting record used to be a staple of political advertising, and a career in Congress was worn as a badge of honor. But this year, many House candidates are deciding not to mention their service here, a blunt acknowledgment of the dim view that a vast majority of voters have of Congress.

In acts of great creativity, or profound chutzpah, some members, former and current, are shrouding their jobs with fuzzy images of cute children back home or tales of their private sector jobs. Where incumbents are being challenged by former members, the sitting members of Congress are painting their opponents as consummate insiders.

“With record low job approval, it’s not surprising that incumbents aren’t anxious to highlight their ties to Washington,” said Nathan L. Gonzales, deputy editor of The Rothenberg Political Report, a nonpartisan political publication.

Mr. Heck, in an ad that refers to him as “Dr. Joe Heck,” speaks about his father’s heart attack and points out that “as a doctor I’ve cared for thousands of seniors.” For good measure, he adds at the end, “I’m Dr. Joe Heck, and I approved this message.”

Asked about the ad’s message, Mr. Heck said, “I think there is a natural trust between patients and their doctors, and there should be a trust between constituents and their representatives, and I think talking about my experience as a doctor helps solidify that position.” The fact that he is already a member of the House, he said, “is irrelevant to that ad.”
Being a Member of Congress is kind of like having a pre-existing condition without Obamacare.

Is Mitt the Shit truly The Confidence Fairy?

Well, between his column today and a post on his blog, Paul Krugman makes it clear that poor little Mittens has precious little he can run on. What with a horrible business, a party platform that demands insurmountable contradictions and a political judgement that requires him to shoot himself in the foot on a regular basis, there is not much Money Boo-Boo can do.

With an economy like this

It is easy to see why the Republicans have given up on Michigan in their efforts to put Money Boo-Boo in the White House.
Comerica Bank is reporting, Comerica Bank’s Michigan Economic Activity Index surged ahead by 2.0 points in July, rising to a level of 107.9.

“The Michigan economy accelerated rapidly this summer, driving our Michigan Economic Activity Index up a total of 5.9 points from May through July. July marks the highest reading for the Michigan economy since November 2002,” said Robert Dye, Chief Economist at Comerica Bank. “Job creation picked up again in July, while housing markets are showing signs of improvement with sales and prices increasing. August U.S. vehicle sales picked back up to a 14.5 million unit rate and that is encouraging.”

Housing is also in recovery in Michigan, probably due to the increase in auto manufacturing and economic stability.
Amazing how well Michigan is rebounding despite the best efforts of a Republican/Teabagger governor and legislature.

Mitt goes all out for Emergency Rooms

If one were to believe the senseless jumble that Mitt likes to put forth as campaign positions, Emergency Rooms are the answer to health care for the uninsured.
In the 60 Minutes piece, interviewer Scott Pelley pointedly asked Romney: "Does the government have a responsibility to provide health care to the $50 million Americans who don't have it today?"

"Well, we do provide care for people who don't have insurance," Romney said. "If someone has a heart attack, they don't sit in their apartment and die. We pick them up in an ambulance, and take them to the hospital and give them care. And different states have different ways of providing for that care."

So, if you're in critical condition and you can get to a phone, you're good to go. Never mind the fact that if you had been getting regular health care, you might not be in critical condition.
Mitt in his pose as an America hating Conservative, does not want to pay tax dollars for anybody else's health care, so he recommends the most expensive health care drain on tax dollars. With such peccable logic, Mitt is a shoo-in for a return to the private sector after Election Day.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Time to stop and think

And some beautiful thinking music. J S Bach's Air on the G-string.

Maxine sets us straight.

That dirty old Internet

Not the content, but the hardware needed to keep it up and running. With everybody expecting an instant response to their input, efficiency is not a byword of the industry.
Most data centers, by design, consume vast amounts of energy in an incongruously wasteful manner, interviews and documents show. Online companies typically run their facilities at maximum capacity around the clock, whatever the demand. As a result, data centers can waste 90 percent or more of the electricity they pull off the grid, The Times found.

To guard against a power failure, they further rely on banks of generators that emit diesel exhaust. The pollution from data centers has increasingly been cited by the authorities for violating clean air regulations, documents show. In Silicon Valley, many data centers appear on the state government’s Toxic Air Contaminant Inventory, a roster of the area’s top stationary diesel polluters.

Worldwide, the digital warehouses use about 30 billion watts of electricity, roughly equivalent to the output of 30 nuclear power plants, according to estimates industry experts compiled for The Times. Data centers in the United States account for one-quarter to one-third of that load, the estimates show.

“It’s staggering for most people, even people in the industry, to understand the numbers, the sheer size of these systems,” said Peter Gross, who helped design hundreds of data centers. “A single data center can take more power than a medium-size town.”

Energy efficiency varies widely from company to company. But at the request of The Times, the consulting firm McKinsey & Company analyzed energy use by data centers and found that, on average, they were using only 6 percent to 12 percent of the electricity powering their servers to perform computations. The rest was essentially used to keep servers idling and ready in case of a surge in activity that could slow or crash their operations.
They waste a lot so you want not. If you are happy with the tradeoff, keep on surfing.

Christ enjoined his followers to Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's

According to the latest reports as many as 1000 evangeloonie pastors have declared that they know better than Jesus.
More than 1,000 pastors plan to openly defy the IRS by telling their congregation on October 7 to vote for a particular presidential candidate, according to Fox News.

The annual event, dubbed “Pulpit Freedom Sunday,” has been organized by the conservative Christian group Alliance Defending Freedom. The pastors participating in the event plan to preach about the election, endorse a candidate, and send video of their sermon to the IRS.

“The purpose is to make sure that the pastor — and not the IRS — decides what is said from the pulpit,” Erik Stanley, senior legal counsel for the group, told “It is a head-on constitutional challenge.”

The Johnson amendment in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code prohibits tax-exempt charities and churches from intervening in political campaigns on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate. The IRS has been reluctant to revoke churches’ tax-exempt status for violating the more than 50-year-old IRS rule, but the agency has issued written warnings to dozens of churches.
Time to start pulling those tax exemptions. Based on false pretenses anyway, why should we support them?

What else is he hiding

New ad from the Obama camp eviscerates Mitt the Shit.

Big Booze out to burn Sweet Marijuana in Colorado

The efforts to pass the ballot initiative legalizing marijuana in Colorado is getting opposition from the usual sources, including Big Booze which sees its dominance in the mind altering sector threatened by Big Weed.
The frontline in that war is Colorado, where the federal government has interfered with its system of state-regulated medical marijuana businesses, despite President Obama's promise to refrain from doing so. Countering that crackdown is a 2012 ballot initiative that would make Colorado the first state to fully legalize marijuana and regulate it like alcohol.

Enter Hickenlooper. In the same month a poll showed majority support for the marijuana legalization initiative, the governor blasted the measure for allegedly "detract(ing) from efforts to make Colorado the healthiest state" and for "send(ing) the wrong message to kids."

What makes his announcement so stunning, and what evokes the drug-dealer comparison, is the governor's career as a purveyor of the drug commonly known as alcohol. That's right, as the founder of the state's first brewpub, Hickenlooper was instrumental in flooding the state with his beery drug of choice. In fact, he is so proud of his record pushing that mind-altering substance that he recently made national headlines telling reporters that "I'm the first brewer who's ever been a governor."

So it all comes down to trust. Will voters trust that their beer-mogul-turned-governor is actually worried about health and children? Let's hope not, because when you put Hickenlooper's brewing career and beer triumphalism next to his marijuana fearmongering, he's essentially saying that while pot is unhealthy and bad for kids, alcohol is not - and that assertion is not supported by facts.
Poor Colorado, this election year promises to bring a tsunami of mendacity down upon the voters until November. We can only hope they will keep their heads in all the issues.

Is he for real?

Or does Mittens have other motives for running for president beyond actually winning? This is a question many people are beginning to pose about the millionaire poseur.
That’s not just a rhetorical question: In Mitt Romney’s heart of hearts, maybe all he really wanted was the Republican nomination.

Every time Romney gets an opportunity to reset the narrative of the election, he makes some psychologically revealing mistake. Giving Clint Eastwood his spotlight, rattling a rubber saber over a tweet from the US embassy in Cairo while it was under attack, writing off half of all American voters as moochers—you only have to tilt your head to see each of these “gaffes” as a cry for help. And Republicans themselves are grumbling about Romney’s skimpy schedule of public events, where real voters might take his measure and enthusiasm for a ground campaign could be generated.

“There’s not really a campaign here,” one Republican close to GOP fundraisers complained to Real Clear Politics. “He’s getting ready for the debates, and he’s out fundraising. You’ve got enough money!” Lindsey Graham and Peggy Noonan have also bemoaned his semi-AWOL schedule.
Sure he has spent a lot of money, his own and more of other people's money, but what is he really doing with it? Regularly shooting yourself in the foot and failing to make a full effort to overcome that does not impress many people. Still, his failure as a candidate is good news for the country as a whole.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Before their producer dressed them funny

Paul Revere and the Raiders were a good band. They stayed good despite the funny outfits.

Pay Your CEO What He Is Worth

Because a new study has put paid to the old shibboleth that if you don't pay them a whole lot they will run away. In fact it is fair to ask them, Who would want you?
New research by Charles M. Elson, director of the John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware, and Craig K. Ferrere, one of its Edgar S. Woolard fellows, begins by attacking this conventional wisdom. Mr. Elson and Mr. Ferrere conclude, contrary to the prevailing line, that chief executives can’t readily transfer their skills from one company to another. In other words, the argument that C.E.O.’s will leave if they aren’t compensated well, perhaps even lavishly, is bogus. Using the peer-group benchmark only pushes pay up and up.

“It’s a false paradox,” Mr. Elson said in an interview last week. “The peer group is based on the theory of transferability of talent. But we found that C.E.O. skills are very firm-specific. C.E.O.’s don’t move very often, but when they do, they’re flops.”
The "peer group" crap is a major corporate scam that results in a rising tide floating all turds or to be a little more contemporary, no loser left behind.

From the pen of Tom Toles

Quote of the Day

When the courts midwifed these things, they said, ‘They can’t corrupt because they’re totally independent of candidates and parties, That’s why you can give them an unlimited amount, because you’re not buying access, the candidates may not like them, they’re wholly independent. Well that’s baloney. They’re not independent in any way.
Trevor Potter former Federal Election Commission chairperson, referring to the 2010 Citizens United verdict.

Otherwise known as dipshits.

Bill Maher blasts the "undecideds" a/k/a low information voters.

What we don't know about Mitt's Taxes

Paul 'Lyin' Ryan working for his people

And he has done a good job for them if you know who his people are.One hint, they are not the voters in his district in Wisconsin.
Ryan trumpeted the $1.2 trillion in Bush tax cuts showered largely on the richest 1%, pushed for the deregulation of Wall Street financial manipulations, opposed 2007 efforts to rein in the financial industry’s increasingly risky practices but then voted for a virtually unconditional bailout of the big banks after the meltdown in 2008 in order to “save the free enterprise system.” Ryan also voted for the auto bailout without any provisions to prioritize US jobs including those in his district. Further, Ryan has been a consistent supporter of the “free trade” deals with low-wage, repressive regimes that have fueled the offshoring of jobs.

In recent years, Ryan’s home district has lost thousands of family-sustaining jobs. Its economic foundations have been dangerously hollowed out: Delco in Oak Creek shut down at a cost of 3,800 jobs, mostly going to Mexico; Chrysler in Kenosha had 850 jobs sent to Mexico with the help of auto industry “bailout” funds; and General Motors in his hometown of Janesville eliminated 2,800 jobs directly with its pre-Christmas 2008 plant closing, while GM kept open a low-wage plant with parallel capacities in Silao, Mexico. The GM shutdown in Janesville wiped out another 3,000 jobs in nearby supplier plants.

The three major industrial counties in Ryan’s district have endured devastating manufacturing job losses since 2000, with Kenosha County losing 30%, Racine County 33%, and Rock County an astonishing 54%.
And the effects of these losses rippled out into the local economies to merchants, homeowners and the very social fabric of peoples lives. But Ayn would be happy.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Another sister duo

The Neilds, sisters Nerissa & Katryna Neilds are what is left of an earlier band of the same name. They now tour as a folk duo with various levels of backup.

The Myth of Self Made Mittens

Martin Bashir reminds us that despite what he would have us believe, Mitt the Twit was born on 3rd base.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Mittens releases 2011 tax returns

Plus a summary of his returns back to 1990. On the latest return he was nice enough not to use $1.75 Million in deductions to keep his tax rate above 13% since he is running for president. The summary is cute but pretty much useless for vetting because the details are where the meat is. And it is way too late to save his campaign because we already know he is a loser and still don't know what he has to hide.

47th% Street Entrance.

From the pen of Ben Sargent

Life expectancy not what it used to be

Another new study
and more bad news for one segment of society.
For generations of Americans, it was a given that children would live longer than their parents. But there is now mounting evidence that this enduring trend has reversed itself for the country’s least-educated whites, an increasingly troubled group whose life expectancy has fallen by four years since 1990.
There goes the Republican base.

The Disdain of the Republican/Teabaggers

Falls mainly on the workers who made those sons of bitches rich in the first place. Not that reality will give any pause to them, as Paul Krugman notes.
For the fact is that the modern Republican Party just doesn’t have much respect for people who work for other people, no matter how faithfully and well they do their jobs. All the party’s affection is reserved for “job creators,” a k a employers and investors. Leading figures in the party find it hard even to pretend to have any regard for ordinary working families — who, it goes without saying, make up the vast majority of Americans...

Needless to say, the G.O.P.’s disdain for workers goes deeper than rhetoric. It’s deeply embedded in the party’s policy priorities. Mr. Romney’s remarks spoke to a widespread belief on the right that taxes on working Americans are, if anything, too low. Indeed, The Wall Street Journal famously described low-income workers whose wages fall below the income-tax threshold as “lucky duckies.”...

Where does this disdain for workers come from? Some of it, obviously, reflects the influence of money in politics: big-money donors, like the ones Mr. Romney was speaking to when he went off on half the nation, don’t live paycheck to paycheck. But it also reflects the extent to which the G.O.P. has been taken over by an Ayn Rand-type vision of society, in which a handful of heroic businessmen are responsible for all economic good, while the rest of us are just along for the ride.
A pile of ridiculous fapdoole and greed have gutted the Republican Party and ultimately will promise its doom.

Homer Simpson votes

And shows us the ups and downs of the electoral process.

God the Jerk

Mark Morford, writing on AlterNet, examines why the God of the Extremist right wing nut jobs is such a whiny, needy jerk, far from the omnipotent lord of all.
Petulant. Uptight. Whiny as a third-grader with recurring lice. How do we know? Because, against all deeper understanding and without a single care that He’s not the slightest bit real in the literal sense, the Almighty still insists on keeping score, observing your every move, measuring your capacity to hate others who do not agree with your narrow view of life, or love, or America.

It’s true. If all reports for the past week – and the past handful of incoherent centuries – are to be believed, God does nothing but laze about the couch with a golden iPad, tracking how many times He’s mentioned on television, who won the Packers game, how often you watch porn or say something nice to a gay person, and who commits more acts of guilt-addled fear in his glorious name.

Oh, and love. There’s love in there somewhere. Maybe. Unless you’re a liberal. Or Muslim. Or gay. Then you’re on your own.
Morford shows us how the Masters of the Conservative Universe use God to those frightened by a world they can't control.
This is why the Republican cause is so frantic to invoke God as much as possible. “God” implies there’s some sort of explanation, impossible though it may be for pathetic and sinful humankind to understand. Invoking a bitter, judgmental God you can never really access (much less fully embody yourself) brings wobbly balm to those who live in fear of a complex and impossible world, those who feel everything is out of their control.

Hey, at least Angry Republican Grandpa in the sky has it all figured out, right? At least I don’t have to think too much, look too deeply in the mirror, or listen to that nagging, deep-down voice telling me nothing’s really as it seems, right? I mean, whew.
Simply brilliant!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Sometimes I think I repeat myself

But if I do it is only because the music is so good. Enjoy the Chapin Sisters, daughters of Tom Chapin and nieces of the late Harry Chapin.

The Heart of a Hypocrite

Martin Bashir gets biblical on Mitt the Twits ass.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

How To Secure Your Right To Vote

from Sarah Silverman so the language is NSFW

h/t Watertiger

Sen. Reid calls off voting in Sen. so Scott Brown can debate

The only problem is that Sen. 'Chicken Scotty' Brown doesn't really want to debate.
Reid’s maneuver came moments after the Boston Globe quoted Brown saying he’d skip the debates if called on for Senate business.
No one likes getting their clock cleaned.

Job Creatin' Republicans push to kill thousands of jobs.

In their efforts to harm President Obama, those wacky job creatin' Republican/Teabaggers are lined up to kill an entire American industry in favor of its Chinese counterpart.
Similar cutbacks are happening throughout the American wind sector, which includes hundreds of manufacturers, from multinationals that make giant windmills to smaller local manufacturers that supply specialty steel or bolts. In recent months, companies have announced almost 1,700 layoffs.

At its peak in 2008 and 2009, the industry employed about 85,000 people, according to the American Wind Energy Association, the industry’s principal trade group.

Many of those jobs have disappeared since, as wind companies have been buffeted by weak demand for electricity, stiff competition from cheap natural gas and cheaper options from Asian competitors. Chinese manufacturers, who can often underprice goods because of generous state subsidies, have moved into the American market and have become an issue in the larger trade tensions between the two countries. In July, the United States Commerce Department imposed tariffs on steel turbine towers from China after finding that manufacturers had been selling them for less than the cost of production.

And now, on top of the business challenges, the industry is facing a big political problem in Washington: the Dec. 31 expiration of a federal tax credit that makes wind power more competitive with other sources of electricity.

The tax break, which costs about $1 billion a year, has been periodically renewed by Congress with support from both parties. This year, however, it has become a wedge issue in the presidential contest. President Obama has traveled to wind-heavy swing states like Iowa to tout his support for the subsidy. Mitt Romney, the Republican nominee, has said he opposes the wind credit, and that has galvanized Republicans in Congress against it, perhaps dooming any extension or at least delaying it until after the election despite a last-ditch lobbying effort from proponents this week.
In their prodigious efforts to 'create' jobs, the Republican/Teabaggers just plain forgot about a homegrown industry that has valuable jobs and a valuable final product.

A picture is worth 500 words

Half as many thanks to Mitt the Shit

Mickey Corsi of Bedford, Texas, holds a sign as he protests outside the hotel hosting a fund-raiser for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Dallas on Tuesday.

Mitt got it ass backwards, as usual

Rmuse has a post in PoliticusUSA that examine the true parasites in our economy, Willards beloved "people", the corporations.
Since Romney complained that 47% of real Americans paid no income taxes were parasites on the government and could not take responsibility for their lives, it is hypocritical that he failed to include 26 highly profitable Fortune 500 companies that paid no income taxes and in some cases got a refund since 2008. Why did Willard not complain that companies like Bain Capital’s Mattel, General Electric, Boeing, and Wells Fargo received taxpayer-funded entitlements while they paid nothing in income taxes? If Romney is irritated that real Americans living at poverty level cannot be taught to take responsibility for their lives and start paying income taxes, when will he teach highly profitable corporate-people to start taking some responsibility for their corporate-lives and pay income taxes? Besides not paying income taxes when they are making record profits, they live off entitlements funded by Americans who do pay income taxes.

Nearly all of the 26 Fortune 500 who did not pay income taxes use resources taxpayers fund like ports, highways, and the transportation system, or police and fire protection, water and sewer systems, and tax breaks for shipping Americans’ jobs overseas. When will banks and companies like Bain Capital that received taxpayer-funded government bailouts start taking personal responsibility for their corporate lives after they gambled with other Americans’ money and caused the global recession? They certainly are not poor like the 47% of Americans who paid no income taxes or they would not be listed in the Fortune 500 most profitable companies. If Romney is going to impugn real Americans who do not pay income taxes because they are poor; why does he give highly profitable corporations a pass and campaign on a promise to reduce their tax rate even more? Because those inanimate legal instruments are his “corporation-people,” and unlike a child’s imaginary person, they help Romney earn millions.
Perhaps Mitt the Shit feels more for corporations because real people will only pay him $400K as POTUS, but corporations have no limit to what they can give him.

Having failed in the world of politics

T-Paw BridgeFail
is moving on from the failed Romney/Ryan campaign into the world of failed banks.
Whatever aspirations Tim Pawlenty may have had about snagging the vice presidency in a hypothetical Mitt Romney administration are officially over, as the former Minnesota governor takes a big-wig financial industry lobbying job.

The AP reports that Pawlenty is stepping down from his role as national co-chair of the Romney campaign to take the gig at Financial Services Roundtable, which starts November 1. Pawlenty will be CEO of the lobbying group, which represents Bank of America, Citigroup, and Wells Fargo among its 100 or so clients. The LA Times:
So T-Paw BridgeFail will now become T-Paw BankFail and we wish him the same success he had with his presidential aspirations. And another thing, isn't it a little early to be publicly bailing out on Romney/Ryan?? Or is he the first of many.

They pulled the numbers out of their asses.

The latest reports on the LIBOR rate manipulation does not look good. According to the International Organization of Securities Commissions, many of the benchmarks used in the financial industry have no more basis in reality than does LIBOR.
The same lack of oversight that enabled traders to manipulate the London interbank offered rate plagues other benchmarks around the globe, according to a group of international securities regulators.

Fewer than half of the benchmark interest rates surveyed in the U.S., Europe and Asia were based on actual transactions, according to a confidential International Organization of Securities Commissions discussion paper obtained by Bloomberg News. Instead, the rates were calculated by methodologies that were unclear, not transparent and only rarely subject to specific regulatory standards or obligations, the group said...

According to the discussion paper, about 80 percent of benchmarks were either compiled by associations or private entities. For survey-based benchmarks like Libor, the criteria for submitting data was not always objective and called for judgments about rates and prices, according to the discussion paper. Even in benchmarks that are based on actual transaction data, the compiling bodies retain discretion in producing the actual rates or prices.

“The risk of manipulation will be greater where participants in the process have both incentive and opportunity to submit inaccurate data or apply a methodology inaccurately,” the authors said in the paper. “Furthermore, where judgment is required in determining the data to be submitted, the problem is particularly acute.”
Kind of scary that the shakiest numbers are those that require judgement.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Hard to tell if she is the heart or the soul

Of Donna the Buffalo but any way you shake it, she is a damn good musician. Together with Donna and on her own, as in this selection,she is always worth listening to.

So why has government been useless against Wall St?

Matt Taibbi clues us in on a book by a man inside Congress who gives us some of the down and dirty details of how good legislation gets killed.
We get one of those rare inside accounts in The Payoff: Why Wall Street Always Wins, a new book by Jeff Connaughton, the former aide to Senators Ted Kaufman and Joe Biden. Jeff is well known to reporters like me; during a period when most government officials double-talked or downplayed the Wall Street corruption problem, Jeff was one of the few voices on the Hill who always talked about the subject with appropriate alarm.
Matt's post has too much to summarize or excerpt but if the review is this good, the book must be wll worth reading.

If the Masters of the Universe believe prolefeed?

Paul Krugman
puts forth a scary proposition, that those we view as MUA are themselves no more than proles with a good polish and shine.
The “lucky ducky” trope is clearly, obviously nonsense; equally obviously, it was originally created in an effort to dupe people who didn’t know better. It was and is what Orwell called “prolefeed”, junk aimed at the ignorant masses (ignorant by design), the people who are ready to believe at a moment’s notice that we’ve always been at war with Eastasia.

In Orwell’s vision, however, the Party – and especially the Inner Party – wasn’t supposed to consume this same tripe. It was supposed to understand the true Party agenda and vision (a boot stomping on a human face forever).

So it actually is a revelation to see Romney and friends obviously swallowing the prolefeed whole. The news here isn’t really about their lack of empathy; it’s about their raw ignorance.
So if Mittens and His Minions are not the real MUA, who is??

'Safe' nuclear power

Everybody wants safe nuclear power until safety gets in the way of profits, then somebody is in trouble and it ain't the management. One man's story of how he disobeyed management orders to continue a reactor start up in the face of newly discovered leaks tells us much about management in this industry.
Mr. Hicks proceeded to ignore Mr. Nazat and shut it down anyway. This ended up costing the company $6 million in lost revenue and repairs, which were extensive. It turns out that there were several pipes and pumps that had been installed incorrectly and the entire reactor was essentially a ticking time bomb. Mr. Hicks did what was legally required to spare not only the surrounding population from the devastating effects of radiation poisoning but, Mr. Hicks contends, he also saved the company from the massive lawsuit and bad press that would have inevitably resulted from the inevitable “incident.”

For his efforts, Mr. Hicks was fired.

And this is why nuclear power is insanely dangerous. The powers-that-be at FPL apparently concluded that the fine and lawsuit would cost less than the lost revenue or that it was worth the gamble that the inevitable “incident” wouldn’t occur until after they had left the company, thus making it someone else’s problem. Either way, they couldn’t allow employees to get the idea that laws and regulations take precedence over executive decisions to endanger lives.
Even in the face of nuclear disasters, management will play its self-serving cost analysis games.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to Posts [Atom]