Sunday, January 29, 2012

"Whitey's On The Moon"

Newt Gingrich is on Mars. I love his "space, the final frontier" big idea. It's just so retro! When you run out of ideas, look at the sky for inspiration. Dude, we are destroying this planet. I don't understand why there is a conversation about space as a priority, when we can't even take care of things on earth. At least President Obama is talking about energy. Which is a really big problem, soon gas will be $4.00 a gallon, and in Europe they pay more than that.
Space programs have given us some really great technology. But so did Steve Jobs. Sorry Newt, that space colony of yours is going to add to the deficit.
With all the problems we have in this country, and all the whining about "big government," this is Newt's big idea. His fear is that the Chinese will take over the moon before we can. But the Chinese have no official moon program. Chinese space program - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
An example Gingrich used was Lindbergh and his transatlantic prize of $25,000. There actually was a $10,000,000 prize that was won for suborbital space flight. Ansari X Prize - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 The winner's included Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, the investment cost over $100,000,000. Over $100,000,000  to have commercial galactic travel. So we can spread our pollution all over the cosmos.
I believe Newt is batshit crazy. Did he even suggest that we invest in green energy research? Or is he content to watch the polar ice caps melt? Why aren't we making this planet our priority? Why is there no conversation about pollution or green house gas, a/k/a "climate change"? And could we please, please, get a US train system that we could be proud of and save a buttload of energy? And what about people working at home and not commuting anymore, saving even more energy,  I can't wait for all that "trickle down" goodness to be showered upon us. Oh, wait, there aren't any jobs. And there are still people that don't have internet access right here, in this country. There goes that idea. Bummer.
 Everyone should have a computer and internet access.
What if the government started a work program to have every household hooked up to the internet? Oh that darn defecit!
 HEY NEWT! Remember this? Why don't we just go back to killing whales? What a great energy policy! Let's just kick it old school. We could retrofit every public building with quaint oil burning lamps. We wouldn't be slaves to the Middle East anymore! I am surprised he hasn't suggested it. I am surprised all the Republican morons haven't suggested it. Let's just go back in time, I know! Let's all get into the "wayback machine" the Repugs want us to drive. Where there are no African-American Presidents, women can't get abortions and the elderly just dropped dead in the street. Bring back the workhouse and the poorhouse. So many problems would be solved. This is the country Newt and his fellow stone age cretins want. Talk about American Exceptionalism! Aren't we great? Look at the way we take care of our people. Look how we treat others, we spend billions of dollars in useless wars, apparently that's an employment program everyone can get behind, and I mean really behind, what a bunch of jackasses. Maybe it's just me, why can we go into debt to kill people, but we can't spend money on feeding people and housing them, and making sure they can pursue happiness?
If it wasn't for the fact that I look at these debates as a comedy show, I would be really worried. These idiots don't stand a chance against President Obama, with their hare-brained schemes. I really hope Newt wins the nomination. I swear, I think he's on something. He gives a whole new meaning to "sky high."

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

"Right Now" Really?

That would be, NO!
This is who I spent a lot of time looking at, when President Obama made his speech last night. And my feelings were, that no matter how masterful the Presidents speech was, who will believe him now that it's taken 3 years to realize what the rest of us have already been living with. And then there's Boehner, and he's not going to do anything, because his party is completely out of control. So many people have been disillusioned by President Obama, I have asked a lot of people who I see and work with, if they will vote for him again, and the answer is no. Which is exactly what the Repugs are going to say to everything the President proposes. Then I read this article in HuffPo, 
His new chief of staff is from Citigroup. More bank insiders. I do think that Occupy Wall Street had a huge influence on the Presidents speech last night. And I was impressed with that. But his actions will tell the tale. He needs to take charge as President and stop trying to work with people who want him and his policies to fail. I voted for President Obama, and I understand that he is up against a force of politicians that will not work together period. He still tries to maintain some sense of bipartisan collaboration, which I think is just denial on his part. They are NOT going to send him any legislation, "right now!" What I really wonder is, in the elections in November, will the American people reject the Republican intransigence and vote them out? Or are we just going to get the same tired "trickle down" bullshit we've been fed for 30 years. When the President says he is going to help the people who are underwater on their homes and at the same time has all the same entrenched bankers at the Fed, and on his staff, what is really going to change? When Geoffrey Immelt (head of G.E. and one of the biggest outsourcers of jobs) is his jobs Czar, and nothing new is coming from him, it's more contradiction. I want to believe that the President has our best interests at heart. But the people he put in place just don't. That is a mixed message. Millions of people are suffering. He can't afford to wait for a "do nothing" congress, who doesn't care if everyone pays their fair share. The only ones who pay are the poor and what's left of the middle class. President Obama must use all his Presidential power to do something, "Right Now!"

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Colossal Failure!

 We know what this is all about, money,  the senate campaign committee, and all those donations to super PACS. I don't believe for a minute, this is about artists and their work. Since when has the government given a damn about artists? Except maybe to have them blacklisted. One point that really hasn't been addressed, is the notion of "intellectual property" which is really, media corporations ownership of property rights. Usually an artist is contracted and sells their "intellectual property" to a company who then, owns the rights. Media corporations in their laziness or stupidity sell their content to iTunes, instead of being creative and selling their product directly to the people. Because they can't figure out the internet. There is another issue here, the decimation of the economy and the annihilation of the middle class's ability to spend any money on entertainment when the price of food and gas has skyrocketed. Millions of potential consumers would love to spend money on music and movies and books. One way broke people can get that, is the internet. The banks and peoplrations have only themselves to blame for file sharing. And does anyone really know, how much file sharing is going on? Where is there any proof of the harm it is doing to media conglomerates?
 Here is a picture of someone I particularly loathe. The senator from Kentucky. (Probably THE most poverty stricken state in the U.S., that, should tell you a lot.) Apparently when the vote was supposed to go down on Friday, (those cowards always vote for their sneaky legislation before the weekend) McConnell told Reid he didn't have 60 votes to pass. The Senators who really authored this bill, Mark Rubio and John Conryn, who is head of the committee for campaign finance, in other words, donations to super PACS, is where the pressure for this legislation is coming from. All this is about more corporate welfare, let's just hand over the internet to the corporations, like they don't own everything already.
This is what we're dealing with, people like Mitch McConnell, trying to take away our rights on the internet, does he even know how to use a computer? God, he should DIAF. There's another bill going that they are going to try and ram through again, here's a link for Black March

Sunday, January 15, 2012

American Gothic

Migrant Mother photo by Dorothea Lange
 Who has not seen this photograph? This is Dorothea Lange's work, during the great depression she documented it's impact on America. We have these images because of the FSA. A work program called the Farm Security Act. This is something we could not have today, a person taking photographs of American's suffering because of economic hardship. An artist paid by a government program, to make work. Underneath Dorothea's work is an example of Grant Wood's work. He is an American master, also paid during the great depression to paint murals, among other things, by the Public Works Art Project. Another program, paid for by the government. To support artists and to boost American morale, in order for American citizens to believe that better times were coming.
I was reading The Guardian today, this article was on the front page:
 Many Americans gave up hope last year – 2012 will be worse | Business |
In this article Joseph Stiglitz talks about the year 2011, the year American's gave up hope. People in 
                                                                    their fifties being unemployable, spending everything
American Gothic Grant Wood
they've saved to survive, they have been forcibly retired.
Young adults graduating from college with crushing student debt, and no jobs available. 7 million Americans have lost their homes.
According to Mr Stiglitz, the "good news" is with "progressive taxation" we could generate revenue to finance public investment. I think it's a great idea. But it's not going to happen. With a government that's gridlocked until the next election. A government and it's politicians, owned by corporations.
I too, have very little hope.
It's sad that I am looking to the past, to the years Roosevelt was in office, for a leader who actually took on the banks and did something for the people who elected him. That's not happening in 2012. The article by Joseph Stiglitz, a professor at Columbia University, was not on the front page of the New York Times, but on The Guardians front page. Because I am thinking, we are not supposed to give up hope.
Maybe we should give up hope, that things will ever get better. Then maybe we should get really angry that people are suffering, and very little, the bare minimum, is being done to help people who have become victims of the system.
In art school there is a saying, "you have to break it down, to build it up again." I think that is what should happen to this system we have now. Tear it down and rebuild. Oh, and it wouldn't hurt to have  few artists involved in the process.
Do we really want to go back to this?

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Epic Fail!

Herbert Hoover
Barack Obama
         Lets' compare and contrast. Herbert Hoover with Barack Obama. First, I researched their legislation. That was pretty depressing, (get it? depression?) because there's not much of a difference. One thing I kind of think is in Hoover's favor is his dam. Although, I think people died building it, and it probably wreaked havoc on the environment. But hey, he got something accomplished!  Along with plunging us into The Great Depression. Actually I think Obama might do this too. (a depression, not  a dam) Neither of these people were effective leaders. And neither was their legislation. 
                     Let's explore some of their achievements, starting with Hoover.    
  • Mexican Repatriation Act - Over 500,000 Mexicans and Mexican-Americans relocated to Mexico. I don't want to get into how wrong this was. Apparently it didn't work to well.
  • Smoot-Hawley Tariff - Raised tariffs on imported goods. Which in turn other countries raised tariffs on our goods. Making the economy worse.
  • R.F.C. or Reconstruction Finance Corporation. Let's see, where have I heard this before? 2 billion given to all kinds of greedy banks and businesses, of course it didn't work. Later it was found out that there were a lot of politicians giving money to all their business friends. 
  • Financial Home Loan Bank Act - This one did help some people who might have been foreclosed on. But it just wasn't enough. Sound familiar?
  • Revenue Act Of 1932 - This raised revenue on the 1%. By a whopping 63%. Good move! 
      Now let's look at Obama.
  • American Recovery And Reinvestment Act - Have you recovered? I sure haven't.
  • Tax relief, Unemployment Insurance, Reauthorization And Job Creation Act - Really?
  • Patient Protection Affordable Care Act - I can't afford healthcare.
  • Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act - Yeah, what great reform. So much has changed.
  • Matthew Shepherd-James Byrd Hate Crimes Law- Good idea, at least he did that.
  • Don't Ask Don't Tell Repeal Act - Another good idea. Now he has two of 'em.
  • Public Private Investment Program - This was Geithners big idea. That's right, one of the architect's of the Great Recession! How could it fail? Well, because banks won't take less for their toxic assets, so, say goodbye to another amazingly, unhelpful, piece of crap.
  • Car Allowance Rebate - "Cash For Clunkers" I think this probably helped some people, but mostly the automobile industry.
  •  Home Owners Rebate - Boy what a miracle! Housing is booming! 
  •  Budget Control Act Of 2011 - A super committee is born! And, is completely ineffectual!
I think we can conclude that Hoover and Obama have a lot in common. At a time when a complete overhaul of a broken system is needed, both of them are an epic fail. So I here's what I think, but I hope doesn't happen, We WILL go into a Great Depression, people are going to get even more desperate. (check out Hoover's "Bonus Army", the first Occupy Washington DC. Herbert Hoover - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia )  Looks like Obama is making the same mistakes Hoover did. So glad we elected a Harvard grad. Who should be way smarter than me, but just isn't. He's propping up the same old tired ideas, perpetrated by criminals that should be prosecuted, not put in positions of power. And it doesn't look like anyone with near the skills of Roosevelt is anywhere on the horizon. We're pretty much screwed.                                                        

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Big Government IS The Problem!

Wouldn't Ronnie Be Proud!
I am not sure how to view Republicans except as pretty much comedy for the most part. So I decided to educate myself more about the Republican candidates back grounds. I started with Newt. He was born to teenage parents in 1943 and they broke up within days of his birth. For about 5 years he was the son of a single mother. I could not find out if she ever collected welfare and drove around in a Cadillac. But she did remarry an Army officer and Newt was legally adopted by him (his father never paid any child support) Also his late mother had mental health issues involving depression. Maybe it was having a son like Newt. (pretty depressing) So the military industrial complex kept Newt out of poverty.
Next I took a look at Ron Paul. He was the state champion in the 220 yard dash, I'm thinking he had a scholarship to college. He earned a BS in bio at Gettysberg, and went on to Duke University for his M.D. Went to Detroit for residency and then was a flight surgeon for the Air Force, and the National guard. Why would you, after all those years of training, not go into private practice, but join the military industrial complex, during the height of the Vietnam War? Maybe patriotism?(the draft?) After that it gets even funnier. He becomes an Obstetrician. Oh my, I could not imagine Ron Paul in the delivery room. What a nightmare. ( I use midwives and female doctors, a male gynecologist is like having a motorcycle mechanic work on your car. I'm sure there are good ones out there, but I digress.)
Mitt Romney is just amazing. His dad was the former Governor of Michigan, I never heard Mitt mention his dad was born in Mexico! But it's true. In 1886 his great great grandpa fled to Mexico with his three (yeah I said 3!) wives. I'm not sure if it was because of the wives. But it's real interesting that Romney's dad is technically a Mexican immigrant. (it's all in Wikimedia!) Also his dad was the CEO of American Motors. Can it be? Governor of Michigan to CEO of an automobile manufacturer. How is that possible?
Michelle Bachmann is kinda boring. Her parents got divorced when she was a little girl, and guess what? Her mom remarried a banker! Michelle became a tax lawyer and worked for the I.R.S. Also she gets quite a bit of money from the government because she has a therapeutic home for girls with eating disorders. (Michelle looks way to thin to me) She also gets government funds for a clinic she and her unqualified husband run. Lets not forget the family farm, they received in excess of $260,000 from 1995 to 2008. I guess government really is the problem.
Rick "The Rooster" Santorum. (Yep it's his real nickname derived from his unruly hair and constant annoying crowing all day long.) His parents both worked for the V.A. in Virginia. Which I guess scarred him for life since he is not in favor of women working outside the home. But wait a minute, his parents worked for the government and probably had decent pay and benefits. Something no one is allowed to have now. Rick graduated from Penn State and started working for a Republican State Senator and realized he too could make a living as a politician. Especially when you can just step all over the rights of women or better yet, have them all erased. (the rights and maybe the women too.)
Rick Perry hasn't got a prayer! (I  know, what a hoot!) The Governor of Texas was a "Yell Leader" (Can't you tell? Think Will Ferrell Spartan cheerleader) in college in Texas. He graduated with a degree in animal sciences, get's a commission in the Air Force and in 1972, he completed pilot training and became the first military drone! I am blaming this on the Military Industrial Complex too.
It seems to me that none of these candidate's would have a hope in hell of getting anywhere if they had not benefited from our too big, out of control, over budgeted government. Isn't it ironic? Let me get that black fly out of my Chardonnay.