Jerry Seinfeld needs to get off the stage, he’s skewing the stage greatness level down bigtime. And that’s coming from a Seinfeld freak.
Special Barack Obama webcast address : http://my.barackobama.com/page/content/oct20watch
Update : it’s over, but you’ll hear all about it tomorrow. It was big time.
And now we also hear that Wall Street people are on track to receive their highest earnings yet. We can assume getting billion dollar hot beef injections from the feds would do this. So. Bankers are richer than ever and unemployment is over 10% in some states (as well as in parts of Canada). The great class divide widens and although too early to conclude, the Obama presidency has made it worse.
And you know what? I’m guessing he had no other choice. Although he seems to have a “hands in my pockets hands in my pockets” relationship with big bank, every advisor and expert agreed that big money had to be dumped into the American financial system just to keep it alive. As one would expect, Wall Street smarties were able to capitalize on this. His rhetoric seems like he wants to use policy to squelch excesses, but when one of your biggest contributors is Goldman Sachs, what are we supposed to expect ?
Finally, to me the overarching issue of this whole thing is corporate personhood, allowing corporations similar rights as people. The clear difficulty lies in a corporation’s freedom of speech, thereby allowing them to give big money to political campaigns (among many other things). Without this, there would be drastically less lobbying and a much smaller influence of private interest in public policy. I’m no lawyer, but I’m glad this issue is still aggressively debated. The New York Times has a liberal-focused editorial to this issue here if you want one team’s take.
I have no idea, but I know he digs Earth Wind and Fire. One of my favourite pictures of him so far. If I saw him I’d give him a Belmont and tell him to sit down and I would sing him a song and give him a drink with ice cubes and fizz and fruity sweetness. I worry that he can’t sleep, but I know I shouldn’t care. But hey.
Ready for obvious? It’s too easy to bash all types of media on either side of the border, on either side of the spectrum. But it’s still good to do, merely for the sake of re-re-re-learning that news media can be straight up poisonous, especially when we’re talking about 10s of millions of people treating it as gospel. I get it – bias is invetable. But as the major disseminator of information to the public, really. Shame shame, because you couldn’t say your girlfriend’s name. For sure, I’ll say it next time for suuuure.
Flipping through news TV clips yesterday where Sean Hannity and the pale moonlight dancer Dick Cheney said that he disapproved of Obama shaking hands with Chavez, even though Chavez ran up to him like a rookie cheerleader meets the quarterback in the caf. Hannity then led the conversation into Obama’s “soft and anti-American” stance. And of course the neo-McCarthyism gets fanned and fed grapes while the hammer and sickle quickly marquees over the weather in hell. I then proceeded to angervomitlaughcry, how I do. And then my brain thinks of images like this:
Hypocrisy first, manipulation close second. Media commentators and politicians continue to conveniently forget the consequences of their own economic imperialism. Ignore the facts if you want, FOX News is the biggest news network in the U.S., I just don’t know if it’s because people want watery entertainment or are actually truthseeking. And don’t tell me it’s good for liberals for an opposing view, bad journalism is bad journalism. I’m not saying networks like MSNBC are the answer, but I hope people have room for two sides in their brain and never decide after 3 minutes of juice. I’m all for raising these probing questions about issues like torture and diplomacy. Let’s just bring a history textbook and a relatively open mind.
I’m not a self-loathing westerner, but I’m also not an arrogant prick. Torture does way more harm than any possible good. It rarely leads to good information and might just encourage more extremist behaviour. Don’t think of Jack Bauer please. One Al Qaeda member recieved waterboarding torture 183 times, and no new intel was received after torture began. Obvious obvious. Tens of millions of people watch bad journalism every day. Insert “fair and balanced” joke here. I too am fair and balanced – I am female and hate cheese. Truth and truth. (Don’t you believe a word).
A great visual guide if you’re curious to see where those trillions are going. The big things I see are how much the taxpayer pays of this (about half), and the comparison of military spending vs. everything else. Nutbars. Pro-military conservatives sounds like an oxymoron to me if you want to keep a shred of your “less government, cut taxes” rhetoric. Gaaaah.
The point of daylight savings time? Better sunlight hours for farmers? Mmmm not so much no more. Saving energy costs? Apparently not at all. Scientific American reports research of energy demand pre and post DST. Some are calling for Obama to get rid of it as it looks like it may save energy.
March 8th y’all.
Devil is in the details. I could see how a few % of this remainder would stay for diplomatic/reconstruction/reconciliation purposesin Iraq, but 50,000 still after next year? Maybe withdrawal takes longer than we expect, but that doesn’t sound like a withdrawal at all.
“Anything that has to be rescued like a bank needs to be regulated like a bank”.
Less regulation has proven to be the wrong answer. Partisanship is hard when you want to get along with someone, but you also happen to have fundamentally different views on governance and the economy. Oh, and when this side is also blatantly hypocritical. Tough.
I feel like opponents of deregulation now have crystal arguments to show that this style isn’t going to cut it anymore. To paraphrase Nobel economist Paul Krugman, in the past 50 years the periods with more regulation, not less, have proven to be more healthy and stable periods of economic growth. Regulation gets marketed by conservatives as impenetrable walls and a hindrance to economic growth for their own misguided political reasons. The thing I find so funny (and amazing) about the outspoken right is they believe that big government and regulation is the devil. Remember 2002-2008? We all know of Bush’s massive/bloated government and weak regulation along with its result. Dickery. And when the con pundits try and call “porkulus” on Obama’s stimulus for a similar amount of money as their “we-need-700-billion-without-an-eye-shake-because-you-will-die-otherwise”? I just want to angrylaugh at that brainwashing hypocrisy.
Stimulus is not an option, it’s needed, and a big one is needed. Irrefutable. If McCain was elected he would’ve consulted the same economists and still pushed through a massive bill. Buuut Fox News would’ve said it was needed. Aaaand now the blood has boiled out of my veins. To be fair, MSNBC would have likely been dicks about it, too.
It’s easy to get people on board with conservative ideals – “Low taxes and tax cuts? Small government? Yeah, the government does suck! Blame succesfully externalized! Unapologetic defense commence!” Hmm, sounds like something else. All political and economic structures are created by humans, inherently flawed. To ignore our (military, socio-economic, political) actions and imminent mistakes is just that – ignorant. Government normalizes these mistakes, so let’s actualize. In this case, research (and thus governance) is advocating for economic stimulus. Tax cuts will not create stimulus, it will just allow citizens to save or pay off debt. Your band-aids are getting sweaty. We need this, and and we also need government to be better, not smaller. Easier said than done, I know. But out of anyone to do it? mmhmm.
This is Obama’s press conference from last night. His style is clarity, intelligence, openness. He scaremongers a bit (which obviously gets exacerbated by the media), but I think at least some if it is actually warranted. Seems so heavy.
I understand it’s important to get this bill out quickly, but do you blame people about seriously considering a bloody $800 billion bill? Thousands of jobs are being lost by the day, totally get it. When you denounce your fellow politician, it sounds like you’re trying to get away with something. If my reluctance is misguided I apologize, but at least it’s well founded. I know it won’t be perfect, but with all of the government’s mistakes one would hope that it’s close.
Looks like fearmongering, but a good FYI:
I was looking more into coal and nuclear energy lately, and I feel Obama not fully pursuing nuclear is a really big blunder. Haven’t heard any announcements yet and he had a big enviropolicy day today. Canada is a bit ahead of US in hydro and nuclear but same goes for us too. Supplies for uranium are available in the 10,000s of years, and waste products are overall safer than fossil fuels, believe me. Yes there was Chernobyl, it killed 31 people directly and affected thousands more with secondary impacts and evacuation. But many believe nuclear has really received a bad rap in people’s view. Since, safety standards are extremely stringent and more imporantly, Please count the number of deaths related to plants burning fossil fuels. Studies vary, but it’s at least in the thousands per year. One study shows up to 30,000 a year but the debate continues between the environmental lobby and the industrial lobby, ie. both wrong sides. Mainly lung cancer and other respiratory ailments. Lots of info online if you’re curious.
Until we get to a place in the future that can safely rely on renewables for all of our energy needs, something is needed within our grasp that is the least impactful and proves itself as a reliable and increasingly safer alternative.
We have similar uranium deposits as the US, but these volumes are amongst the highest in the world. As you know, the US also has a population 10x greater than ours. And how isn’t that a good economic option? I am aware that startup costs for nuclear are high and that is a deterrent, but are clearly the better investment long term. So yes, the bell of disappointment in politics encores. Just no willingness to try foresight and proving your constituents right by simply explaining the benefits effectively.
Photos from the coal ash spill and environs from the NY Times. I didn’t really hear about this much in the news a month ago, was the coal PR tag team back again? Whoomp there it is.
Big surprise, I think Naomi Klein is Queen Awesome, even though I realize she has just as many critics as supporters. After reading No Logo and Fences and Windows, it’s clear she’s raised some really great questions and provided some reasonable answers. I just wish she didn’t look as much like a young version of my mother.
Her new(ish) book The Shock Doctrine is all about the rise of “disaster capitalism” and how true capitalism has proven to be more of a fallacy than any free market proponent would care to admit. She feels this school of thought has mainly come from Chicago’s Milton Friedman, a Nobel Prize winner and a highly respected economist. I agree that true capitalism doesn’t seem to exist – the biggest proponents of free market capitalism are the ones acting the most socialist begging for bailout money and getting saved by taxpayers.
Now my research into the criticism of her book has been limited and I realize that can be dangerous, but just from simply taking from her examples it’s clear that a pattern has emerged where a small few make massive changes/decisions in their own self-interest, and can get away with it as these subjected populations are vulnerable from the resulting economic/natural disasters and will have a higher tolerance for “change”. The word of 2008.
Think of military based companies being used for outsourcing for wars all over the world, a massive push for privatization of schools and healthcare in New Orleans after Katrina. Vulnerable governments need help, need investment, and are willing to give up a lot of control to show their country that something is being done about it.
So when I saw this video from Rahm Emanuel (Obama’s chief of staff) it couldn’t help but sound major internal alarms in my head. The title of this video is what first got me clicking – “Rahm Emmanuel sees the Opportunities in Crisis”. Now who’s to say that these opportunities couldn’t be wholeheartedly positive for the country? Maybe these massive shocks are the only things to get us to change period. Totally possible, but these shocks have been completely favouring corporate self-interest. He talks about massive reform in energy, defence, education, healthcare, immigration, etc. I wouldn’t say that things are fine and we should just maintain status quo, I just want us and the press to really examine these changes and see who benefits. Here’s to hope.
And in case you’re interested, here’s Naomi Klein on Real Time with Bill Maher from the fall, right when the economic crisis was in full initial swing.
Shannon Shaffer from Design Cuisine. Yes a bit over the top being overly interested in the “first lunch”. Yet foodies of the world are reading/salivating in unity – seafood stew in puff pastry (lobster, shrimp, scallops), duck and pheasant with molasses sweet potatoes, winter veg, apple cinnamon sponge cake for dessert. Somewhat seasonal and local, warming on a winter day, and evidently an inspiration from Lincoln’s meal. Mmmmmmm, tastes like… change.
I’m sure you guys are watching. Classic “fail”.
“The word “fail” needs to be banned from all critical discussion for the next two years until the Internet is detoxed. Seriously, I’m reaching the point where I can’t read it anymore; it’s a dumb and lazy shorthand for criticism and if you use it, f___ you.”