Um, they get money to stay in business? When they have fought increasing fuel economy and hybrid vehicles have not been part of their plan? They needed our money? They don't deserve our money. If I wanted them to get my money, I would buy one of their cars.
Wall Street Journal article
Continuing placing blame in all the wrong places:
(from pharyngula_rss )
In a September 25th blog post titled 'The Nation Will Right Itself If It Fixes Sex', Christian Civil League of Maine Executive Director Michael Heath writes that the financial crisis facing Wall Street is a symptom of America's sinful sexual culture, including the acceptance of gay unions.
"Our crisis is a symptom, not the cause," writes Michael Heath. " I am not saying I know whether this financial crisis is God's judgment or not. It is not for me to know that definitively."
Heath goes on to list policy changes that would make God "crack a smile," including: End abortion rights and defund non-profit groups supporting it, amend state constitutions to ban gay marriage and eliminate domestic partnerships and civil unions for gay and lesbian couples, and end discrimination against private religious schools and homeschools.
Ooookay then. It is not those people is less desirable neighborhoods at all, it is that we accept homosexuals and allow abortions. So it is not even a legal/legislative problem, it is god getting mad at us. Clearly. Why didn't I think of that before? Of course! Katrina, dead soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, 9/11 terrorist attack, all because of the gays.
Oh, and whatever discrimination there is of religious and homeschools.
Not sure what that discrimination is, but it must be so, since a Christian said it. Oh, wait, I know what one problem of religious schools is - their science is shite. I looked through my cousins' "science" book from his xtian school (my two cousins are 1 and 2 years ahead in science, and their Mom said this school is much better than the one she had them in last year - I think they should go back to homeschooling or go to public school...). Holy-fucking-shit. Did you know that Kepler was a Christian? Two of the questions on their last test were about that. Also, an elliptical orbit is a perfect circle, just offset (so the sun is not in the center of the circle). Wow! I also learned that the sun and planets rotate around the solar system. Not sure if that was just bad phrasing (like cars go around a track) or if there has not been a mention of that whole galaxy thing. It was a poorly worded question in either case. I am sure there are some private religious schools that have a real science program. Just not that one.
- They are Pro-Life - "A culture of life"
- McCain has a better economic plan
- McCain has a strong anti-terror stance
- Palin is a woman
- "You didn't lose anyone in the 9/11 attacks"
- "Your SO/Girlfriend/wife/daughter isn't wearing a burqa"
Lets look at these.
- Same phrase Bush used. And Bush, as Gov of TX, executed a large number of convicted felons. Bush and McCain are pro-war, pro-invasion, and pro-staying in Iraq. So, that really translates to anti-abortion. Plus, neither of them did a damn thing about it when they held power in the White House, Legislature, and Supreme Court.
- As far as I have seen, McCain's plan is more of the same "Voodoo" economics that we have suffered under for the past 8 years. Tax cuts for the big business and the rich, and somehow even though it has not helped yet, it will very soon. I don't think so. It did not work in 8 years under Reagan, it has not worked in 8 years under Bush. I guess we just have not given it enough time to work.
- Anti-terror. I think about 99.999999% of the world population is anti-terror. McCain is Pro-war, and following the Bush Doctrine. We attack first. Works great in a video game, not so good in the real world with real consequences.
- Palin is a woman. So is Hilary. I did not vote for either. And I don't care if she is a woman. It is her politics that matter.
- What does that have to do with my vote? Is this more of the "you just don't understand?" Or is it the feeling that if someone I knew had died then that I would be more in favor of vengeance and war?
- What. The. Fuck?! What does that even mean? They don't wear magic underpants either. Should I be afraid of the Mormons?
Q: Are you offended by the phrase "Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance? Why or why not?
PALIN: Not on your life. If it was good enough for the founding fathers, its good enough for me and I’ll fight in defense of our Pledge of Allegiance
Um, okay then, Governor. I hope that someone has taken the opportunity in the past two years to educate her on the history of the country. That phrase was added during the cold war - 1954. And the Founding Fathers? The pledge was written in 1892. That means the Founding Fathers had already been dead and buried for 50+ years.
The Governor of Montana has told the Federal Government and Homeland Security to bugger off on the whole RealID stuff:
He is slightly more polite than just saying "blow me," but not by much.
The audio is only 4 minutes, so it is worth the time to listen.
Huckabee is also one of the candidates that does not believe in evolution and when pressed for an answer was at the height of political double speak and changed the subject. The problem with the subject change is that he started blaming the media for prying into his private religious beliefs (and those of other candidates). Except that he and the other candidates opened the can of worms by openly and heavily courting the evangelical movement, which I think makes the question fair. You know, really, he can believe whatever he wants to believe. However, we have seen the fundamentalist movement get in the way of science from stem-cell research to the HPV vaccine.
Strike three for Huckabee is that he said, "...we need to do is to amend the Constitution so it's in God's standards rather than try to change God's standards..." Um, FUCK NO. The biblical god (the one to which he is referring) is all over the map when it comes to standards. Old Testament, New Testament, mixture, Jesus' standards, what? Don't forget that sexism and slavery are standards of the Bible. Now, unless you hear voices in your head, god has not changed those standards in almost 2000 years (well Council of Nicea was ~300CE, so 1700 years). Any deviation from the Bible is a particular sect's dogma.
At this point, I feel it necessary to quote the First Amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
I am pretty sure "amending the Constitution so it's in God's standards" is in clear violation of the First Amendment.
In other legal news, a jury in Duluth was convinced by the most expensive lawyers on the planet to force a single mother living a little above poverty to pay the RIAA $222,000 for downloading and "making available" music. FUCK THE RIAA. In other news, the RIAA has let slip their hand and is considering the following bullshit (from http://www.dailytech.com/RIAA+Eyes+
- "...users who buy songs are entitled to one, and only one copy. Burning CDs is just another name for stealing, in her mind. "When an individual makes a copy of a song for himself, I suppose we can say he stole a song." Making "a copy" of a purchased song is just "a nice way of saying 'steals just one copy'."
- Another possible avenue of legal action for the RIAA is the pursuit of businesses that play unauthorized music in stores. The Performing Rights Society (PRS), Britain's version of the RIAA, may give the RIAA some possible ideas with its pending litigation. The PRS is suing the Kwik Fit Group, a car repair shop in Edinburgh, for £200,000 in damages. The case revolves around the complaint that Kwik Fit employees brought in personal radios which they played while working on cars, which could be heard by colleagues and customers. The PRS says this amounts to a public "performance" and should have entailed royalties.
Hey - RIAA - Fuck You, and your little bitch organization PRS. Overall record sales profits are down for a couple of reasons:
- Less new albums available
- Craptastic music
Keep in mind, at the height of downloading, individual album sales were up, but since there were less albums, the overall $$ were less. Also, DVD sales were up and there is not much price difference, so there was entertainment dollar competition from the movies.
The RIAA's business plan is crap. Their model is obsolete. It is like Bill Maher said (this is a little old)- GM said Hybrids are not part of our business plan. GM lost 4 billion dollars last quarter. What the fuck is your business plan?
The RIAA's plan is not more musical acts, not more variety, not more new music, not better downloading. No, their plan is sue and alienate all of their customers. And then what? What is their plan when sending blanket subpoenas to university fails their money requirements? Sue more people, hire better lawyers, and now go after CD Burners, or playing your radio at work? What The Fuck!? Has the RIAA forgotten "Fair Use" or "Time Shifting" precedents from the 70s and 80s? So, in their world, if my CD is scratched, I have to buy another copy. If I want to keep the CD at home, and put a copy in my car, I am stealing. Nevermind that the piece-of-shits who broke into my car got a CD wallet full of copies (Ha-Ha!) and I would have to purchase all of that again according to the RIAA.
There should be much more ranting about the War on Terra and "State Secrets" and the worst president ever, and his major contributer Blackwater's private christian army, and SCHIP, but really, I just don't have enough time to pick on the fascists right now.
Not surprisingly, most Republicans (Congressional) have not said anything, not even the expected "Thank you for your service to this Great Nation."
Here is what the leading Dem presidential candidates have said:
"The President needs to nominate an Attorney General who will be the people's lawyer, not the President's lawyer, and in an Obama administration that person will first and foremost defend and promote the rights and liberties enshrined in our Constitution."
"...long overdue, and so is the appointment of an Attorney General who will put the rule of law and our Constitution above partisan politics."
I'll add my own - don't let the door hit you on the way out, you lying sack o' shit.
Gonzales and Ashcroft should start a practice together - Asshole Lawyers for the Destruction of the Constitution and Raping of Civil Liberties. They could have a catchy motto like "Fascism isn't bad if you are in control" or perhaps "1984, not just a year, a utopia."
They should be ashamed. Shame on every one of them that did not stand up and say NO. Shame on them for ignoring the infrastructure and health care of this country while our troops are dying occupying a foreign country and they (Congress) kowtow to a corrupt regime. I knew Coleman would vote for it, he has been nothing if not Bush's lap dog. But Klobuchar, I expected better of her. She has a real background in law.
I vote no confidence in the whole federal government. The Bush administration must go. Those in Congress must go. All of them. Since it has been pointed out to me that there is no "reset" button for the government, it seems our redress is limited to two options. Mentioning one of those options is likely to get me sent to Guantanamo (advocating a revolution is apparently illegal and we are all to comfortable to actually make a go of it anyway), I implore everyone to vote out every single incumbent in every election you are able. Since we are not rich and cannot withhold funding like the companies backing the administration, the only thing we can do is vote them out. Sending emails, calling, and faxing does not seem to change the votes, even though they are supposed to represent us.
This is not yet a Fascist State. Fascism is the need of the State over-riding the needs of the individuals, intolerance of anything not in the State's interest and extreme Nationalism. It is also not yet a Theocracy. This country's path should not lead in either of those directions. Unfortunately, it has almost become an Oligarchy, in which We The People are ruled by a small minority of power holders (BushCo, Murdoch, Haliburtin, Big Oil). We need to stop this degeneration of our society. I do not want to tour the ruins of our society, while slowly puffing an INGSOC cigarette; the society we let fall on our watch; let fall to a creepy cadre of greedy, corrupt scum.
From Boing Boing:
"John P. Walters, President Bush's drug czar, said the people who plant and tend the gardens are terrorists who wouldn't hesitate to help other terrorists get into the country with the aim of causing mass casualties..."
First, John P. Walters is a fucktard. I have heard this same shit for years now, all to scare up some funding for the DEA/War on Drugs. Yet another war on another concept that will always be fought, will always need funding, and we were always at war with East Asia.
Marijuana is less addictive than Alcohol and Nicotine (and my personal favorite, Caffeine). The lethal dose of Marijuana is not recorded, but it greater than 10000mg, whereas Nicotine is a scant 60mg. Deaths resulting from Marijuana (as per the National Institute of Drug Abuse - I have no idea how legit they are) are listed at 0, whereas Alcohol and Tobacco account for about 500k per year. On top of that, marijuana has legitimate medical uses. Yet here we are, with another round of fear inducing rhetoric.
I did not see a huge announcement about the record yields of poppies in Afghanistan, except in the paper. Nope, it is apparently not news according to the DEA. But a few people arrested for Meth or pot, that is newsworthy for the DEA to put on their homepage.
In summary, John P. Walters is a fucktard and the War on Drugs is a huge fucking waste of resources.
First, my machine takes about 10 minutes to boot because of all of the crap that is installed on it to keep it safe. It is very safe, since it takes so long to do anything. Then, I cannot get to my web-app, since every few weeks or so the designated service account loses the "Log on as a Service" permission. Not sure what security thing that is, neither the Windows admin group or the Information Security people can tell us why. After reseting the password (thereby forcing the permission), my web-apps starts working again.
Then I see that the company has found a NYT article on how the pro-business SCOTUS has decided it prefers sucking the dick of manufacturers over retailers by repealing a 96 year old law about "resale price maintenance agreements." See, it used to be automatic - if a manufacturer said you have to sell this for at least $X, Anti-trust could be invoked (I believe that Microsoft got hit with this one). So, a small company said, we want to sell it for $(X-n) and manufacturer said "no." Litigation ensues. The Supremes said well, it is not automatic anymore, we don't like that law from 1911, so this is now a case-by-case basis. The right-leaning bench just took another whack at Anti-trust laws.
From the article (dissenting opinion)
But Justice Breyer said in his dissent that the court had failed to justify the overturning of the rule, or that there was significant evidence to show that price agreements would often benefit consumers. He said courts would have a difficult time sorting out the price agreements that help consumers from those that harm them.
“The upshot is, as many economists suggest, sometimes resale price maintenance can prove harmful, sometimes it can bring benefits,” he wrote. “But before concluding that courts should consequently apply a rule of reason, I would ask such questions as, how often are harms or benefits likely to occur? How easy is it to separate the beneficial sheep from the antitrust goats?”
“My own answer,” he concluded, “is not very easily.”
I am sure davedujour can guess which justices voted which way.
I am thinking this is not good for consumers. How often do companies really want to price something for significantly less than the "suggested retail price" versus the price-fixing that is likely to result. Just remember, big business is not altruistic. It is not out to help you and me. It is out to make more money. The more the better.
From the wire:
On the same day that the Supreme Court imposed a new limit on students' free speech in the Bong Hits 4 Jesus decision, the Justices ruled the opposite way in another first amendment case, protecting the rights of corporations and unions to shell out money for political ads shortly before an election.
So, phony ads before the election are banned. Great! Which ones are phony? Which ones are legit? Who decides? When do they decide? What are the penalties?
Meanwhile, a homemade banner saying "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" is grounds for suspension (and suspension of 1st Amendment Rights) when held by a teenager. School sanctioned event? Perhaps it is justification. However, the student was not on school property. So, if it was an excused event, then the school has no right to complain, since it is not on school property. He might have been truant if he was supposed to be on premise. The claim was it was pro-drug. The student claims it was just whimsical. Poor choice for the student. Yet, promoting Drug/Marijuana legalization is not illegal. The main charge that the case works on is that it was disruptive to school activities. How is it disruptive if school was excused and he was not on the property? Just because the school does not tolerate pro-illegal drug use speech, does that really trump the 1st Amendment? Yes, schools can have limits - that is the disruptive part - but I think this was pushed too far. As fat as promoting drug use, again, pushing pretty hard to make that stick. I don't see it recommending drug use to anyone, and you are not going to convince me that even if it was an endorsement that it would be a compelling argument.
So corporations can bend bend bend the truth and everything else with as much money as they want, pending some 'oversight' but a student cannot put up a banner for an hour. Apparently, he did not have enough money. If he had purchased commercial air time and recommended marijuana legalization with that banner in the background, it would be OK.
A reboot [voting no confidence on the entire Executive and Legislative branches] would be chaos for a while, but is that really any different from the usual session startup? But there is no reboot clause, so we need another solution. Armed conflict is not going to be a solution for many reasons. Therefore the government has to be changed slowly, and with more input from the general population.
( very little rant, just ideas on a better America )
How about this - how about rather than involving another country, we just leave Iraq? Hmm? Move some of those troops back to Afghanistan where they should have been in the first place to finish the job there, or just come home. I support our troops, and I say if you want to support them, bring them home.
Edit: Why are the Dems such pussies? Why did they not stick to their plan and send the funding bill back with a timeline? Why do they always back down and apologize. FFS, Jimmy Carter should have stood up and said, "I said Bush was the worst president ever, and I meant it. Now I quote Vice President Dick Cheney, 'Go fuck yourself.'" They (the Dems) need to stand up and say what they mean, and go with it. They need to stop playing the Republican's games, stop letting them (the Republicans) control the conversation and point out when their opponents say something dumb, or 'flip-flop' or say "I don't believe in evolution." They need to jump on that and hammer it. I'd like to see this in a debate: "Oh, really, you do not believe in evolution. How the fuck are you going to promote education in this country? How the fuck do you plan to invest in science in this country? Because fucktards like you are the reason we are falling behind in both of those categories."
And while we are on the topic, there is a war on, a "War on Terra". I do not think there is anything more ironic than driving around in your dodge ram (12c/15h), f150 (11c/15h), suburban (14c/18h), escalade (12c/16h), or hummer (2004 H2- 9.6mpg) getting horrid gas mileage with a Support the Troops magnet. Other than perhaps trying to get "Fahrenheit 451" banned - that is pretty ironic, even if Bradbury says it was more about Television than censorship.
War On Drugs
War On Terror
Both have produced very little, if anything at all. Other than spending copious amounts of money in the wrong places. Although, both have managed to fund more prisons, government agencies, and cut down privacy. So maybe they are accomplishing their original intent.
This is terrorism, too. Attacking the Church is terrorism. Feeding blind irrational rage against those who always speak in the name of love - love for life and love for man - that is terrorism.
And confirmed with this
ROME (Reuters) - The Vatican's official newspaper accused an Italian comedian on Wednesday of "terrorism" for criticizing the Pope and warned his rhetoric could fuel a return to 1970s-style political violence.
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - The Vatican's second-highest ranking doctrinal official on Monday forcefully branded homosexual marriage an evil and denounced abortion and euthanasia as forms of "terrorism with a human face."
And speaking of terrorism
Recently Pope Benedict XVI condemned terrorist attacks against civilians in Great Britain, Egypt, Iraq, and Turkey.
But, he failed to mention Israel. I guess the Jews slipped his mind. Sort of like when when Popes Pious 11 and 12 sort of forgot to condemn the Nazi's and actively collaborated with them. Oh, shit! Am I a terrorist now?
What if I just state a fact. The church excommunicated Galileo after his Heresy trial in 1633. Galileo was right and the church was wrong. Oops, more terrorism. The Catholic church lies about condom usage and tells people in Africa that the condoms are "laced" with AIDS so that they will not go against bullshit fucking religious dogma and use them. The church is wrong. What am I up to, 3 counts now? How about this? The Catholic church as in institution is nothing but a controlling, greedy, wealthy beyond the dreams of avarice, gluttonous, misogynistic, racist, deceitful, hateful, self-perpetuating stain on humanity.
I think that is the Swiss Guard at the door. Lucky for me their little knives got taken away from them at the airport.