Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Rants

Giving America the Old One-Two


Clintonista Roger Altman prepares the battlefield for a massive tax increase, and tries to round up some Republicans to go along:

Only five months after Inauguration Day, the focus of Washington’s economic and domestic policy is already shifting.  This reflects the emergence of much larger budget deficits than anyone...
Hold it! Whaddaya mean “anyone,” Democrat?  Over here, we’ve been yelling about the deficit since November’s bailout pork bill (and some of us were yelling long before that).
...expected.  Indeed, federal deficits may average a stunning $1 trillion annually over the next 10 years.
Yep, it’s a stunner, all right:
Why has the deficit outlook changed?  Two main reasons: The burst of spending in recent years and the growing likelihood of a weak economic recovery.
Half right, Roger.  What about “the billions of dollars in payoffs to Democrat clients during the last eight months which have aggravated economic uncertainty and depressed private investment”?  Along with a carbon tax which will pull more billions out of the economy?
A speedy recovery is highly unlikely given the financial condition of American households...
Think it’s bad now?  Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha!
Mr. Obama and his economic advisers understand this deficit outlook and undoubtedly view it as unsustainable.
Well, there’s an unsupported assertion, if ever I saw one.  I haven’t noticed any administration concerns about the deficit.  (But then maybe I was out having a beer...)
They also understand that increasing deficit concerns complicate their efforts toward universal health-insurance legislation, which is clearly a top priority of this administration.
You know, somebody could just say, “Hey, we can’t afford to do this right now.”  After all, the public seems to understand...
The public is restive over this threat: In a recent Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, Americans were asked which economic issue facing the country concerned them most.  Respondents chose deficit reduction over health care by a ratio of 2 to 1.
So in response to rising public concern over the deficit, you Democrats plan to... go ahead with health care?
According to the Congressional Budget Office, which released its latest forecast June 16, such legislation would mandate more than $1 trillion of new federal spending over 10 years.  Winning support for that much new spending -- in the face of record deficits -- will be a challenge.
And why is that?  Democrats have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, and a majority in the House. ’Sa-matter, Bucky, those 2-to-1 poll figures makin’ you nervous?
The poor budget outlook may impel...
Note the language: “Hey, it’s not our fault!  We’re impelled!
...the administration to follow up health-care legislation with an effort to fix Social Security... Public anxiety over deficits may make this fix possible now even though it has been elusive for years.
“Elusive.”  That’s rich.  Seems like it wasn’t that long ago that you guys had no interest in doing anything about Social Security.  What was “elusive” was any Democrat who might have been prepared to address the issue.

But back to that deficit...
Sometime soon, perhaps in 2010, Main Street and financial markets will exert irresistible pressure to reduce the deficit.

The problem is the deficit’s sheer size, which goes way beyond potential savings from cuts in discretionary spending or defense.
..
We could always try, and see how far we get: How about starting with a freeze on federal pay scales, followed by a mandatory 20% downsizing for all non-military agencies.  Then we could abolish the Department of Education, the Department of Energy, and the Department of Hassling American Travelers Homeland Security...
It’s entirely possible that Medicare and Social Security will already have been addressed, and thus taken off the table.  In short we’ll have to raise taxes.
Hey, did somebody let a bunch of cows in here?  Somthing smells: “Entirely possible; ” that’s rich.  What you mean is, you’ll create an untenable situation by spending like drunken sailors Congressmen, and declaring your pet programs “off the table.”  Then say we “have” to raise taxes.

Oh, and Republicans, here’s where you fit in:
...possibly next year, Congress will seriously consider a value-added tax (VAT).  A bipartisan deficit reduction commission... may be necessary to create sufficient support for a VAT or other new taxes.
“Bipartisan commission,” meaning “Republicans providing cover.

The Democrats are on track to strike a one-two punch against individual liberty, and your pocketbook: They’re half way to cap-and-tax.  On top of that, in the name of “reducing deficits” they want a VAT.  (And given the performance of the last five months, is there anyone who believes this administration is capable of reducing any deficit?)  By the time they’re done, all your income will be going to Washington, and you won’t have a pot to piss in.

Look at that chart again.  The Democrats own the deficit.  Despite the Republican defectors, the Democrats own cap-and-tax.  They also own the Presidency and both houses of Congress.  They can solve things by themselves.

But now they’re scared.  And they want some Republicans along to protect them from the coming wrath of the public.

Well, it’s their mess.  Let ’em take the consequences.

And any Republican who falls for the “bipartisanship” wheeze should be run out of the party.  Starting- right now- with the Cap-and-Tax 8.


LATER (090701 15:55), Related:

Posted by: Old Grouch in Rants at 23:21:19 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Saturday, 27 June 2009

Radio

The day Michael Jackson died

Nobody Home to Notice Dept.

Radio: Whad-ya-say?
Ladies and gentlemen, Michael Jackson died Thursday.

And radio died right along with him.

Most radio stations just kept John Tesh rolling, Ryan Seacrest babbling and voice tracking mindlessly ploughing through the playlist.

By comparison Elvis died way before consolidation and within ten minutes most stations were broadcasting on-air tributes, news accounts and playing wall-to-wall Elvis.  (Not so easy when your local program is coming from national headquarters.)[1]

People not only remembered where they were when The King died, but which station they were listening to.

Not yesterday.

-----
[1]  IMO, it would be reasonable to expect the national guys to be more on the ball and have more resources than any stand-alone local station.  Guess not, and guess there’s no one at home at the national hubs, either.

Posted by: Old Grouch in Radio at 23:51:56 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Dear Diary...

“Cultural Awareness (popular)” score = -5


Was left searching for the point of this post, until I Googled the circumstances of David Carradine’s demise.  (Not something I’d missed at the time, just trivia I’d discarded as unimportant.)

(And which doesn’t make Tam’s comment any less telling.)

Geeze.  Guess I should retire to a mountaintop somewhere, where the only communication is via smoke signals or hand-carried parchment scrolls.

Elsewhere:

Dustbury:   Quote of the week (of course CGH got it right away!)

Posted by: Old Grouch in Dear Diary... at 16:40:32 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Linkage

No wonder we’re in a recession


Saturday morning headshakers, courtesy of Charles G. Hill:

AT&T ignores the first rule of business.[1]
Dear AT&T and Apple:  I would love to divvy up many, many hundreds of dollars between the two of you, but I’ve gotta say, you sure aren’t making it easy.

They keep telling us that management is fungible.
It’s still bullshit.
If I could pick just five merry-go-rounds for all the human species to get sick of riding tomorrow morning and never hop on ‘em ever again, this would certainly make the cut:  Putting an “executive guy” in charge of things outside his experience, hoping it all works out because “the business principles are the same.”[2]

-----
[1]  First rule of business:  If the customer is standing there with cash in hand, take the damn money!

[2]   Snark from Kate at SDA:  “But that's ok.  Before he became President, Obama didn’t know anything about governing, either, and look how well that’s turning out.”

Posted by: Old Grouch in Linkage at 16:15:13 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Friday, 26 June 2009

Linkage

Anybody need a graphic designer?

Yet Another Restructuring Victim  Dept.

HTM’s Stephen Macklin has his resume up:
For the last ten years I have been employed as a graphic designer by the BIC Corporation.  I was responsible for promotional material, trade and consumer advertising, sales collateral and “other.”  You can see some of my work for BIC on this site that has my resume and portfolio.  Just read through the resume part and click where it says Portfolio.

...When I started ten years ago the position handled about 100 design and print projects per year and that I have grown it to over 300 projects that include print, web and video...
...
So if you feel there is some value in my ten years of corporate experience, the dedication to work 50 hours a week, and the talent to grow a position and you are looking to hire a designer, or know someone who is, check out the portfolio.  Graphic design is a digital process so location doesn't matter. I can work for anyone anywhere.

Posted by: Old Grouch in Linkage at 15:37:48 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Linkage

Local newsie gives the right advice


Former Indy Star columnist Ruth Holladay reacts to the murders of two local women:

These stories are so disturbing, and there is such a pervasive theme to them -- woman goes to court, gets protective order, man ignores legal process and slays her -- that years ago, I wrote a column at the Star, in the wake of yet another such tragedy.  In that space, I urged women to arm themselves.

A woman who has a crazed man stalking and threatening her needs to get the biggest piece she can find and carry it with her at all times.  Brothers and dads and friends of the woman, and other women for that matter, need to arm themselves as well.  They should form a protective posse around this woman.  The courts are clearly unable to offer real protection, not, at least, against a man who chooses violence and self-will.
...
...Women need to think like men in these sorts of situations, and counselors and cops should advise them of that strategy, however boldly or subtly.  Women need to -- as a friend used to say -- “strap on their leather balls” and go to work, protecting themselves and their children.

Legal gun ownership remains a right.  Buy the weapon, register it, carry it and be prepared to defend yourself.
No news to my regular readers, but Ruth’s readers are not of the type usually found around here.  Perhaps some of my well-armed lady readers might want to drop by and say hello.

Posted by: Old Grouch in Linkage at 01:04:42 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Thursday, 25 June 2009

Linkage

Results from today’s web-troll



Posted by: Old Grouch in Linkage at 23:28:18 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Linkage

After 24 years, ESCAPE!


“this Sunday, specially for the solstice:”

Goodbye Wizard sweasel...

You and Bob escaped from the dungeon with
132624 points,
a jasper stone (worth 500 Zorkmids),
the Amulet of Yendor (worth 5000 Zorkmids),
9 worthless pieces of coloured glass,
and 15446 pieces of gold,
after 20624 moves.
You were level 14 with a maximum of 166 hit points when you escaped.

Hit return to continue: _
Go give her some congratulations!

Posted by: Old Grouch in Linkage at 17:35:17 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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In Passing

More balls than the American government


AFP:

Football’s world governing body FIFA wrote to the Iranian football federation on Wednesday to ask for answers over alleged punishments meted out to several of their players for wearing wristbands reflecting their support for opposition presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi.

Six of them wore the green wristbands during the 2010 World Cup qualifier 1-1 draw with South Korea last week, including two of their icons Ali Karimi and skipper Mehdi Mahdavikia.

It has been reported, largely by English television station Channel Four News on Tuesday and the left-leaning Guardian newspaper on Wednesday [link added - o.g.] that [the players] had been told they would never play for their country again because of their stance.

HT:  Story and title, “Alice H” @ ++undead

Posted by: Old Grouch in In Passing at 15:54:25 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Wednesday, 24 June 2009

In Passing

Holy WMD’s, Batman!

Sauce, goose, gander Dept.

Nice job you’ve got there...
The time for such discussion of fundamental issues has passed for this round. The administrator and the administration has decided to move forward on endangerment, and your comments do not help the legal or policy case for this decision… I can only see one impact of your comments given where we are in the process, and that would be a very negative impact on our office. - March 17, 2009 email from Al McGartland, Office Director of the Environmental Protection Agency’s National Center for Environmental Economics (NCEE), to Alan Carlin, Senior Operations Research Analyst at NCEE

Government agency exec strongarms staffer about findings contrary to the administration’s agenda?  Holy WMD’s, Batman!

Too bad it’s not a Republican administration.  Otherwise, we could have a media circus, followed by a congressional investigation!

Via: Michelle Malkin

Posted by: Old Grouch in In Passing at 20:11:24 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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