Archive for March, 2011

Black rightwingers just as dippy as white rightwingers.

Mar 29, 2011 in Clueless Conservatives, Racism

Herman Cain knows how to shuck and jive for the white, I mean the right:

White conservatives really like it when black conservatives draw parallels with ideological and racial persecution in a way that allows them to imagine they’re a persecuted minority even as they assert themselves as the singular, genuine voice of Real Americans. For this reason, remarks like Cain’s go over really well, even though he’s actually saying something profoundly racist (most black people vote for Democrats because they’re practically slaves who can’t “think for themselves”), no one bothers to point that out.

Gay Republicans often face the same kind of pressures that black Republicans do: Why are you on the side of those who have such antipathy towards your ilk? And I honestly sympathize with somebody who identifies with Republican on most issues and wants to change the party from the inside via the power of example. Gay Republicans can do a lot to squash Republican anti-gay tendencies, and black Republicans can do the same for Republican anti-black attitudes.

Except when they traffic in anti-black rhetoric.

-hw

Reality check on Republican “conservatism.”

Mar 29, 2011 in Clueless Conservatives

Andrew Sullivan has been standing still while Republicans race to be as extreme right as bloody possible:

Income tax rates are now lower than they were under Ronald Reagan and far lower than they were under Eisenhower. And yet it has become a Norquistian non-negotiable that no taxes can be raised at all on anyone, let alone the beneficiaries of the last thirty years – and those who differ must be “leftists” – even when the US is facing debt of historic and dangerous proportions. Someone advocating what Eisenhower was perfectly comfortable with would be regarded by the Republican right today as a communist. And yet, of course, Eisenhower was emphatically not a Communist, whatever the John Birch society believed. In retrospect, he might even be seen as the most successful small-c conservative of the 20th century. (This was indeed Paul Johnson’s take in Modern Times.)

Similarly, those who view Obama as some kind of radical have to come to terms with what Glenn Greenwald spells out here:

Since Obama was inaugurated, the Dow Jones has increased more than 50% — from 8,000 to more than 12,000; the wealthiest recieved a massive tax cut; the top marginal tax rate was three times less than during the Eisenhower years and substantially lower than during the Reagan years; income and wealth inequality are so vast and rising that it is easily at Third World levels; meanwhile, “the share of U.S. taxes paid by corporations has fallen from 30 percent of federal revenue in the 1950s to 6.6 percent in 2009.”

Do they have to come to terms with it? Republicans apparently don’t think so, and the corporate press isn’t likely to force them to, so who will? Voters, likely, yet whatever yahoo the Republicans finally settle for in 2012 is still going to get a minimum of 55 million votes. That’s simply too many for a bankrupt party that doesn’t deserve 10 million votes (a rough guess at the actual number of people whose interests they serve). Crazy irresponsibility just doesn’t deserve that much success, even in failure.

-hw

When wanting to hate Obama leads you to invent standards you can’t pass…

Mar 29, 2011 in Clueless Conservatives

Trump doesn’t have a birth certificate.

51% of Republicans are birthers, and another 21% are unsure. Only 28% of Republicans can acknowledge the basic, long proven fact that he was born in Hawaii. Once again, there is the difference. Whatever the subject, Republicans invent their own facts to satisfy their emotional needs and can not be unconvinced, because most anybody trying isn’t a Republican, and the last few sane ones are castigated as traitors. How can we possibly expect this crowd to fix our country’s problems? Basic competence eludes them when ideology is at stake.

And yes, birtherism is racist. This has always been about the need to portray Obama as Other, a foreigner with a foreign name, typically also having a foreign religion, steeped in foreign ideologies from Mao, Stalin, etc., resentful of hard-working white Americans and American (white) culture. Naturally, since they can convince themselves of all of this, it’s easy to convince themselves they aren’t racist and get all pissed about it, but as they demonstrate, basic credibility is beyond their reach. It doesn’t have to be that way, but until the remaining 28% start getting pissy about things like paying attention to facts and basic objectivity in determining them, the Republican label (and, of course, Tea Party, since they are just the GOP base trying to put on a new face) will remain saddled with this baggage. Unfortunately, just being white means getting tagged with a little bit of this baggage too, so to my fellow white people, you need to calm the hell down.

-hw

UPDATE: Trump seems to have produced a genuine birth certificate. Guess what? Obama was still born in Hawaii. Sorry.

Austerity!

Mar 25, 2011 in Economy

I know anti-spending fervor was just a anti-whatever-Obama-does reactionary fart from the right in America, dutifully copied by serious people, leading to a stunted stimulus and several canceled public infrastructure projects that would have employed lots of people and improved the country, but why on earth did other countries have to copy the stupidity?

Just ask the Irish, whose government — having taken on an unsustainable debt burden by trying to bail out runaway banks — tried to reassure markets by imposing savage austerity measures on ordinary citizens. The same people urging spending cuts on America cheered. “Ireland offers an admirable lesson in fiscal responsibility,” declared Alan Reynolds of the Cato Institute, who said that the spending cuts had removed fears over Irish solvency and predicted rapid economic recovery.

That was in June 2009. Since then, the interest rate on Irish debt has doubled; Ireland’s unemployment rate now stands at 13.5 percent.

And then there’s the British experience. Like America, Britain is still perceived as solvent by financial markets, giving it room to pursue a strategy of jobs first, deficits later. But the government of Prime Minister David Cameron chose instead to move to immediate, unforced austerity, in the belief that private spending would more than make up for the government’s pullback. As I like to put it, the Cameron plan was based on belief that the confidence fairy would make everything all right.

But she hasn’t: British growth has stalled, and the government has marked up its deficit projections as a result.

Our deficit problems are largely fueled by the economy tanking in 2008, causing already low revenues (thanks, Bush tax cuts) to decline precipitously. If we don’t fix the economy constructively in a way that gets more Americans working and spending, then revenue dips even more and trying to shave a few points off Medicare gets us nowhere. Even worse, we cut funding for things that save money in the long run, going directly backwards.

Yet somehow, in our difficult times, we’ve only mustered enough courage for the “hard choices” that happen to coincide with the 30 year Republican dream of starving the beast, defunding the government in order to force shrinkage to satisfy some vague ideological goal. Steadily, we strengthen the impression that America is unable to understand, address, and solve its problems. Thus the mythical “confidence” we do all this to seek dances further from our reach.

-hw

An easy lay-up.

Mar 25, 2011 in Politics

Couldn’t pass this one up:

Michael,

Wisconsin Republicans say the state is too broke to pay for teachers, but they just gave the 26-year-old mistress of a union-busting Republican Senator a state job with a fat raise. It’s a classic Republican scandal filled with hypocrisy, cronyism, and their special version of “family values.”

Here’s the story. Last year, Wisconsin Republican state Senator Randy Hopper left his wife to live with a young Republican political operative. Last month, as Governor Scott Walker unveiled legislation calling for deep cuts in state workers’ salaries and collective bargaining rights, Hopper’s mistress was hired by the state on the advice of Scott Walker’s cabinet as a “communications liaison.” Further, her salary is 35% higher than her predecessor’s.

Randy Hopper is now facing recall. At Daily Kos, by using something called Google Surge, we can make sure that when anyone in Hopper’s district goes online for almost an entire week they will see an ad about the scandal.

Hopper, like Republican Family Values Hall of Famer and 2012 favorite Newt Gingrich, traded his wife in for a newer model and gave her a cush job and a big raise. No doubt the cries of “smear campaign!” will be heard from coast to coast when that little morsel of information becomes better known but it’s going to be difficult to generate any sympathy among regular voters (as opposed to the online devoted) when the “smear” happens to be dead-on accurate.

My vision is strong.

Mar 25, 2011 in Politics

Yet I am wrong.

I haven’t lacked for the scalpel’s precision in my observations of the world, but I tend to hang back and be more measured in what I say. Why? Not because I lack conviction in what is right and wrong, but because I lack omniscience. In the end, even the greatest minds enter the realm of foolishness and folly, littering human history with the travesties visited upon it by the finest and foremost of thinkers. Very few of them escape the tendency to equate their military strength with their righteousness, after all.

We can be Knowledgeable with other men’s knowledge, but we cannot be wise with other men’s wisdom. ~Michel de Montaigne

Thus I understand that not only are there good people on the right, but there are people better than me on the right. Really nice people, generous people, good time at parties, nice neighbors, etc. etc. Smart ones, obviously rich ones, etc.

First of all, it’s beyond dispute that a philosophy of life cannot be justified merely by success. It’s nice when CEOs write memoirs about how they worked hard and rose to the top, but many reach the top by being vicious, ruthless, robotic, controlling, obsessive, rigid, unimaginative, dull, and so forth. And there is certainly no shortage of wealthy liberals who succeed in business practicing good principles and sound ethics. Terrible and stupid people can win, and good smart people can lose. Plus, skill at something that generates money doesn’t necessarily translate into good perspective.

This really is one of the core narratives that grips this country, one that conservatives love to perpetuate: Hey, those liberals sure are smart, but conservatives got that noble gut! It’s a theory that says it’s really not important to understand things like evolution, climate science, human sexuality, etc. What’s important is bashing and demonizing liberals to the point where you can say if they’re for it, you’re against it.”

“Hey, why are you dumping arsenic in the river?”
“Well, it pisses liberals off, so it must be good, right?”

The right has absorbed prosperity theology into their political platform. Prosperity theology means if you are rich, if you have succeeded in America, it is a sign of God’s blessing. If you haven’t succeeded, you are flawed, sinful, and lazy. You deserve no breaks. If you have succeeded, then you are validated as one of the good people, your indiscretions are understandable, and you are sympathetic to all. Thus the rich pay historically low taxes and balloon in size, while we’re very concerned about them lazy horrible teachers making $40K a year with benefits. One group has been waved through the gates, the other must sit outside and repentantly wait for crumbs.

But there is a lure to prosperity theology, and the GOP has become very good at convincing some of the people to keep themselves down, to just work harder and that all good things will come to them with due subservience. It appeals to those who have a good work ethic. It appeals to those who still want to believe that America will give you a fair shot. It appeals to those who have seen lazy co-workers bitch and moan all day instead of doing their best.

But it’s all illusion, and Governor Scott Walker has done a lot to dispel it for the 98% of us for whom the American Dream is ever receding. The gig is up. The message control is shaky. The truth is getting out. And the truth is this: Fuck you.

Fuck you, I need my bonus. Fuck you, I need my stocks to rise a few more points. Fuck you, I need my re-election coffers filled quickly. Fuck you, I’m sitting pretty and I can’t build a factory because there’s no demand, but I’ll blame it on Democrats anyway because they might raise my taxes. Fuck you, because it’s a game that I’m winning and you’re not, and I’m shooting for a high score. Fuck you, because if you’re not happy with what you got, then you’re an ungrateful pig because what you have is all you deserve.

At some point, the disrespect just can’t be ignored. After America just heard that we had to cut a deal on the Bush tax cuts to spare the rich, we’ve gotten an endless litany of how everybody else has to make do with less, less, less. Turns out, all that government spending runs into rather sensitive areas pretty quickly, no? And then suddenly, with working people agreeing to every number necessary to balance that budget, it’s not good enough. They had to go and place all their bets on total castration.

So despite all the best hopes and intentions among well-meaning Republicans that pushing for low taxes and deregulation will actually bring greater returns for ordinary people, the real “class warfare” has been exposed. It’s just over. If you aren’t in the top 2%, they’re not just not on your side, they’re actively coming after your ass. Their wealth has expanded so exponentially that they’re fully insulated, much like the nobles of yore, from the effects of a disintegrated society. Whatever gap yaws before you, they can cross, because they have enough money to cover the difference. I’m not always so sure the uber-wealthy are behind killing certain infrastructure projects like Christie’s New Jersey tunnel, but given the widespread permeation of their low-tax theology, it’s not much of a chore to do the commute in the back of a limo, is it?

I understand that there are limits to my knowledge, like any person should understand, but as John P. Ryan in The Outlaw Josey Wales said, don’t piss down my back and tell me it’s raining.

Enough is enough. Look for better Democrats, sure, but it’s time to quit pretending any Republican is going to solve the problem. They are the problem. May a spontaneous eruption of conscience, or even raw self-defense, sweep away the foolishness of 2010 and get this country back on track.

-hw

Anti-whatever-Obama-does is not a principle.

Mar 23, 2011 in Clueless Conservatives

Newt Gingrich flip-flops so hard on Libya that the earth shakes. Few politicians have as much contempt for the intelligence of the public as Gingrich. He, along with Frank Luntz, helped pioneer the GOP strategy of controlling the language of debates to sway public opinion, finding buzzwords that got visceral reactions and getting every GOP politician repeating them. This is another level of brazen pandering that reveals Gingrich is so crooked that he sometimes can’t even think straight, because he long ago forgot what it meant.

-hw

Libya flipside.

Mar 20, 2011 in Politics

Been reading Andrew Sullivan going apeshit over Libya and considering how much I got right in my previous post.

To me, Obama displayed patience and waited for the UN to take the lead. We are now contributing forces to an international effort to prevent a murderous tyrant from wiping out a rebellion. We’ve been promised that it will be a limited effort that involves no troops.

Andrew’s primary concern seems to this: what if we fail? Is President Obama actually prepared to stop without a spectacular victory?

Well, doing a gut check, I don’t know. Obama can let a motherfucker down at times, and has only intermittently showed courage against the warmongers. One would think that he understands that a faction on the right will demand nothing less that war, war, and more war. These are people who essentially desire turning the entire Middle East into a U.S. territory. Yet Obama’s been unable to resist much of their rhetoric on rendition, surveillance, endless detention, etc. So yes, he may screw it up.

But he hasn’t yet. It seems too quick to pass judgment on Obama while he is mostly doing the right thing because he might not do the right thing later, despite promising restraint.

That said, the Arab league already backing out after one day and bitching about collateral damage is one nasty little omen. Hillary Clinton’s going to need some aloe vera for that burn…

-hw

The rundown.

Mar 19, 2011 in Politics, We'll post whatever we goddamned want to

Let’s take a moment while lil’ buddy is sleeping and go through some tabs I’ve got filling up my browser:

1. What the hell does Wall Street do for anybody but Wall Street?

Lord Adair Turner, the chairman of Britain’s top financial watchdog, the Financial Services Authority, has described much of what happens on Wall Street and in other financial centers as “socially useless activity”—a comment that suggests it could be eliminated without doing any damage to the economy. In a recent article titled “What Do Banks Do?,” which appeared in a collection of essays devoted to the future of finance, Turner pointed out that although certain financial activities were genuinely valuable, others generated revenues and profits without delivering anything of real worth—payments that economists refer to as rents. “It is possible for financial activity to extract rents from the real economy rather than to deliver economic value,” Turner wrote. “Financial innovation . . . may in some ways and under some circumstances foster economic value creation, but that needs to be illustrated at the level of specific effects: it cannot be asserted a priori.”

2. Why do rightwingers always talk about wait times in Canada? Because Canada is one of the few countries we’re ahead of, and not by much.

3. I’ve been trying to keep people aware of the actual origins of the individual mandate: libertarians and conservatives. Yet now we’re supposed to believe it’s proof of Obama’s affinity to Stalin and Mao.

How to explain this? Well, health care policy is complicated. And the role of the market and government policy are so difficult to separate, meaning the same policy can easily be framed either as more socialism or as more free market. The upshot is that right-wingers tend to view whatever health care reform proposed by Democrats as socialism, but they also see the need to rally around an alternative. Yet when Democrats embrace such policies, it’s very easy for people on the right to interpret those as socialism, too.

4. Palin is sparking that civil war between sane conservatives and the swindling nutcase rightwinger base.

Palin is uninterested in ideas, and she has flourished in the conservative media for years. She does rely on shallow talking points, and legions of conservative pundits have repeatedly defended her against charges that she is ignorant and incurious. Everything about her public persona since she received the VP nomination has been built up around tapping into resentment, grievance, and identity politics, all of which are in one way or another antithetical to critical thinking and substantive discussion of policy, and for a while most of her new detractors said nothing or gushed about how wonderful she was.

As long as she was useful prior to the midterms, the institutions, magazines, and leaders of the movement not only tolerated her, but actively promoted her and gave her typically glowing coverage. Those that couldn’t bring themselves to praise her went out of their way not to criticize her. Now that Palin may represent a political threat to Republican chances of regaining the White House, they are suddenly very concerned about her impact on the quality of conservative argument. Their concern would be interesting if it weren’t so belated and narrowly focused on Palin. When Moynihan made that statement about Republicans 30 years ago, it was true. Thirty years later, the label “party of ideas” has simply become another slogan that Republicans trot out in lieu of any policy ideas.

5. Economists of both stripes should look at this discussion about the blind spots of economics when viewed from the left or right.

Of course, I think the left has bent over backwards to accommodate many of the market principles Republicans have tried to promote the past couple decades. Democrats in Washington since Clinton have betrayed their base countless times to favor business, yet a liberal like me absolutely recognizes that markets should remain essentially free to benefit everybody. Taxes continue to be historically quite low for the rich compared to times when America was profiting handsomely. Hell, half the point of (ideal) health care reform is to relieve businesses of the burden of providing health care to employees and to free workers to change jobs without worrying about losing health care (to the right, tying your health to your job is just a buggy whip to keep the masses productive).

But as described in item #3, those on the right respond to Democrat compromise by shuffling a few more steps to the right. The health care bill was a compromise between right and left already, but Obama overestimated the good will of the opposition party. He wanted to deal, they wanted to destroy him.

I can listen to a smart economist who leans right. Instead, I get a constant hack-job operation from FOX News on down.

Other notes:

6. Obama is completely screwing up this Bradley Manning thing, hard. He asked the Pentagon and they promised they were being nice? How gullible is he, or how gullible does he think we are?

7. Obama hanging back and getting the UN to take charge on Libya was actual mature presidential prudence at work. We were supposed to learn something from Iraq, but why would you expect the same people who sold us that turd to care now? Obama has defused the GOP now, and people are starting to remember a time before Bush/Cheney when the US displayed a modicum of caution and sense. One need only look at Ronald Reagan pulling out of Lebanon, pitting himself directly against the warmongers. They had less power back then, but they were quite cunning about using Reagan’s political coat-tails to fill the space he and Bush I left behind.

8. Nuclear power should stay on the table, but Japan better inform every word of the discussion. I want to see design responses, quickly. Hopefully Scientific American devotes an issue to building a better nuke plant (in a safer location) soon. I’m also interested in how this affects the future of fast-neutron reactors (the kind that eats up all the waste old nuclear plants produce). Interestingly, Japan had one back in 1994 that they had an accident at with a liquid sodium leak, but designs have advanced since then and should continue to.

9. Sarah Palin doesn’t get worshiped in India (almost nobody cares about her), so she hates the press there too also and so. I remember the days when Rush Limbaugh used to grouse about liberals being professional victims, and now the GOP should be renamed the POG, the Party of Grievances.

10. I’m feeling a bit zombified, so time to grab some rest. This gets better every time I listen to it:

-hw

Getting a pig to whistle Dixie.

Mar 17, 2011 in Barack Obama, Clueless Conservatives, Deficit

As time passes and the GOP’s best idea for the deficit is throw red meat at their base and hope it’ll keep them satisfied while trillions continue to accumulate. And people are starting to notice that after the Republicans get done with Planned Parenthood, NPR, teachers, and big infrastructure projects that would bring money to states and create actual long-term growth are turned down…I mean, I just want to keep going on, but the point is that after all is said and done, the GOP isn’t any closer to serious budget reform.

In the poll, 21% of Americans said they believed Congressional Republicans had a better approach to the deficit than did President Obama, while 20% felt the reverse. In addition, 52% said there wasn’t much difference between Obama and the GOP House.

That’s a sharp reversal from last November, when 35% said the GOP had better plan, compared to 24% who said Obama knew best how to deal with the deficit. And while Democrats haven’t soured much more on the GOP’s capability — not very many were so hot on Republicans to begin with — the poll shows Republicans and independents turning away from the GOP in huge numbers.

So is Obama that confident he can call their bluff? Is he actually ready to come in with a plan that will outdo them next year in time to win the election? I’m not confident. But handing the baton to the GOP to demonstrate to the public what a pile of shit they’ve been talking since 2008 is smart and necessary. He signs whatever they come up with anyway, so if they slash the deficit, they did it with Obama!

By doing little and putting the onus on the Republicans who trash-talked their way into office, Obama also illustrates to the public how truly complicated and unpleasant reducing the deficit can be if you immediately rule out denting the military or taxing the rich at historically normal levels.

Worst case scenario, however: Obama has actually bought into GOP rhetoric and is truly just as bad as them, content to try waiting out deficit troubles after making some big promises to capture his second term. Some liberals would say, “Duh!” but I rate it at about 20% probability.

Then again we’re letting ourselves get sucked into another Middle East conflict, so let me bump that up to 35% probability. Naturally, the cost implications ne’er appeared on the lips of any Republican I’ve heard clamoring for war, but feel free to correct me. Please.

-hw

The Greeks Had a Word For It

Mar 12, 2011 in Politics

LOL.

(That’s a reference to a Bow Wow Wow song. The clip is a clip of GOP dudes yukking it up over trying to bring a carry-weapons-in-public, you-don’t-need-a-background-check-or-anything, we-feel-romantic-about-the-westerns-we-watched-when-we-were-kids bill to Iowa. One of the things that makes Iowa great is that it really isn’t that kind of place; spend a year or two here and the thing that strikes you is a quiet guilelessness, an even-handedness that governs daily life in the small towns that both parties like to claim for themselves but about which neither seems to know much at all. The party that, just a year ago, worried a lot about “ramming legislation through” is seen here getting ready to support bills they don’t even support, but which they’ll get paid handsomely to sponsor.)

-TT

Today’s travesty: an NPR executive said the teabaggers are racist.

Mar 08, 2011 in Clueless Conservatives, Racism

Just random rabble, surely, even though there are a few representatives there. Meanwhile, Mike Huckabee, Republican front-runner for the 2012 presidential race, is talking about Obama growing up in Kenya and possibly daring to think poorly of British colonialism.

Of course, if you tune into rightwing radio these protesters and politicians aren’t saying anything new. Let’s listen now and see if any traveling winger will leave a sorry excuse in our comments thread!

-hw

Six of one, half dozen of the other!

Mar 08, 2011 in Clueless Conservatives

Such is the theology among “serious” people, but actual serious people pay attention to the facts:

Look: until 1980 or so the United States generally paid its way; the ratio of debt to GDP generally fell over time. Then starve-the-beast came to power, and fiscal realism went away. That’s the story; anyone who glosses over that, who makes it a plague-on-both-houses issue or, worse, makes it seem as if Obama is the villain, is in an essential way misleading his readers.

Bear in mind, too, that the signature initiatives of Republican presidents — the Reagan tax cut, the Bush tax cut, the Medicare drug benefit — have all been unfunded deficit-raisers; the signature initiatives of Democratic presidents — the Clinton tax hike, Obamacare — have all been deficit-reducing. (Yes, the stimulus — but that was intended to be temporary, and has in fact proved too temporary; and Bush I’s tax increase was an exception, but the GOP has made it clear that nothing like that will ever happen again.)

Democrats aren’t fiscal saints. But we have one party that has been generally responsible, and tries to pay for what it wants, and another party that consistently, deliberately, takes actions to increase deficits in the long term. Saying this may be shrill; but not saying it is being deceptive.

Always trying to be balanced ignores the fact that life is not balanced. For the past 30 years, GOP fiscal irresponsibility has steadily deteriorated the health of the country, leaving us in such dire straits that when it came time for a crisis (created by Republican deregulatory fever), we were unable to respond in a manner befitting the scope of the crisis. Yet more crises await, bigger than before, and we’re nearly paralyzed by fear of institutional deficit that keeps rising…and by GOP dogma that rules out half of the budgeting process, laying the necessary taxes.

Add to that a Republican Party in power that seems to be more concerned with busting unions, restricting birth control and fighting gay equality, and eventually one starts to wonder if Charlie Sheen isn’t the sane one, sucking up every ounce of joy in the world he can scrape together before it all goes to hell. Then again he’s no less of a threat to women than the GOP, so where does one find a hero who will party for all us sinners? I need the Jesus of Parties. I can’t do it, I’m a family man and my body is just too delicate any more to handle excess (a beer just gives me heartburn and makes me pee double the amount of liquid I take in). Who will distract us in our last minutes?

As Krugman points out, the GOP is so stupidly twisted that they’ll cut funding for things that save money. Yet they do it because politically they see the Democrats letting them get away with it. What are the Democrat ideas for saving money? Sure, the Affordable Care Act can do a lot to bend the cost curve down over time and rescue Medicare, but that’s mostly already done and good luck finding a Democrat to defend it anyway. Have you heard any of them proposing big defense cuts? Any Democrats saying, “Let’s cut defense in half. If we get invaded, we’ll apologize!” would immediately be “unserious.” Yet if the Pentagon did simply concentrate on securing America’s actual defenses and not on playing international chess, it would take far, far less money than we currently spend. We could cut the defense budget in half and China would still never catch up to us.

But this is the stuff reserved for obscure bloggers who don’t get how things really work to rant about. After all, when it comes to the military, everybody is a Keynesian. Republicans will instantly talk about how base closings and bankrupt weapons manufacturers will devastate the economy, which goes to show you what they think about socialism.

We’ve got problems, the Republicans are either standing in the way or making things worse, and as always the Democrats are shuffling around like timid mice looking to play “me too.” And just when you thought it seemed like an obvious win to get tougher on the deficit quicker than Republicans, Obama goes and lets them take the initiative. Yes, they’ll fall short and he may be able to follow up with a better and more popular plan, but I have a hard time believing he’d be able to supplant their desire to cut the minor programs that their base hates. We’re going to lose, and lose much bigger than we ever had to, and yet no matter how much the Democrats disgust me for caving, I must always direct the blame towards those actively doing the damage. It’s not even-handed, it’s not just two kinds of good people, it’s one party gripped by destructive madness, and they’ll perform any wound upon the country that will gain them power or satisfy their ideology.

-hw

Excuses.

Mar 02, 2011 in Politics

No blogging because a) arguing in this thread, the most recent response costing me an entire evening and a sour honeybunny and b):

If you want one good link that speaks volumes, this is it.

-hw