Wednesday, November 24, 2010

From Balloon Juice, All You Need To Know About Our Corporate Overlords

This is from a comment posted on a thread at Balloon Juice.  The bold text was my addition:

The last election cycle demonstrated that even if you allow Wall Street and the corporations dictate a large portion of the policy, they will still fund campaigns to destroy you because they don’t want their share or ten times their share, they want it all, all the time.They are never going to stop going after social security. They want every single dollar of the education budgets. They do not want to pay any taxes for anything. They do not want any regulation that ties their hands with respect to their workers, the environment, or any other external costs imposed upon the public by their business activities. Oh yeah, and if they screw up and take the economy down, they want the government to bail them out.

I concur.

Until the Greedheads responsible for all the disasters we've suffered over the last three eight thirty years are held accountable and shipped to jail... until all the goddamn Supply-siders get sued for Fraud and selling snake oil to the nation... we are well and truly fucked as a country.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Screw It. Here's more Lost Battalion Badges

This day has gone to hell real damn quick and I have no other recourse but to ignore the stress and mess around on my CorelDraw 9 to create more Badges for TNC's Lost Battalion:

Revamped GAMER Badge: for all those who Discuss the Value and High Priority of Video Gaming in these troubled times.

 Also known as the Rock of Chickamauga Appreciation Badge.  I found a photo of Gen. George "Pap" Thomas and mixed it with a concrete fill pattern available on CorelDraw.  What, you think I'm gonna use confederate flags for artwork? HA!

The LIKE Badge.  Awarded to those who click at least five LIKES.

The REPLY Badge.  Awarded to those who REPLY to at least five Posts.  To make it harder to get, the REPLY must be a first-tier Reply, NOT a Reply to a Reply.

What do you think, sirs?

There Are Many Things To Discuss... But Not Today

I am inconsistent with posting entries to this blog as is.  Making it worse is the NaNoWriMo effort this month, the massive depression I have regarding my failing job hunts, and the fact that the political landscape is batshit insane now and will be for the next two years.  Even the distraction of making logos for Ta-Nesihi's Lost Battalion will have to wait...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Lost Battalion Gamer Badge

It's not much to look at:

The artwork software I'm using is 12 years old (CorelDraw 9).  If anyone's got a better idea for the badge, and a better means of crafting one, feel free to design your own...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

For TNC's Lost Battaltion

Ta-Nehisi Coates is patient and forgiving enough of us commenters to give us daily space to drop issues and compliments and grievances.  He's taken to labeling us as The Lost Battalion (with the added tag of Platonic Conversationalists) and the group of regulars have taken to it.

This past week, however, TNC had taken to calling us Team Commie (there had been trolls going after us using such insults), but it caused some rifts among the chatters (myself included).  So when he went back to calling us the Lost Battalion I posted "Does this mean we can break out the t-shirts again?"

After a few LIKES and some LOLs following, I decided to see about creating a logo for a Lost Battalion t-shirt.

This is just a suggestion.

MASSIVE UPDATE (3:26 PM EST 11/15/2010): so far the response to this logo has been overwhelming... but I'll leave it to TNC to place it on Cafe Press or such like, as it's his blog we're just dancing there.

Although the other demand is now for Badges to go along with the t-shirts.  The list so far is:
  • Civil War Badge,
  • Gaming Badge,
  • Music Culture Badge,
  • History Nerd Badge,
  • Poetry Badge,
  • Troll Hunter Badge,
  • Graduate Student Accountability Badge,
  • and now that I'm thinking about it, LIKE and REPLY Badges.

Any other suggestions before I start messing on CorelDRAW?

Thursday, November 11, 2010

For Veterans Day: A Thought On Armistice

Oh to hell with it, here's the last scene of the BBC Comedy Blackadder Goes Forth:

Everything you need to know about war in 5 minutes.
That this was the closer of a comedy series remains heart-rending, only less so than the real-life madness that World War I really was.  England lost over 800,000 of their young men to that war: entire towns wiped out of a generation of sons and husbands.  In some ways, this war and not World War II - which in itself was a "Good" or necessary war and thus accepted with some cheer and satisfaction - is the more painfully remembered war in England.  Because of the insane loss of life over a war involving treaties and the lust for empire (Britain's to defend, Germany's to win).
As for this show... in England this episode was shown originally on Armistice Day... It's called Remembrance Day there (Veterans Day stateside).  They only had one complaint.  Everyone else was probably too busy crying as the poppies rise up from the debris of No-Man's Land...

Sunday, November 07, 2010

The Damage Done. The Damage To Come.

Well.  Elections 2010 is over.

The damage is done.  Republicans reclaimed a majority in the House.  More disastrous - for a reason - is that the Republicans gained control of a majority of state legislatures and governors' seats.  Worse of all, it's obviously emboldening the teabagger wingnut crowd into thinking the World is Theirs.  WORST of all: the state of Florida now has as our governor a well-established, well-known MEDICARE FRAUD CEO in Rick Scott, the one person in the state most likely to crash and burn a financial institution with massive acts of fraud and embezzling.  Nice job breaking the state, voters.  /fume

So.  What is the damage to come?

At the state level for Florida, tons of damage is coming.  Remember that "Kill Tenure" bill - SB 6 - the State Lege passed last April that Crist vetoed?  With the anti-teachers Republicans still in charge of the state legislature and with a new governor willing to sign such a bill into law, the fear that an even harsher version of SB 6 - which killed tenure and job protection, shortened teachers' contracts, eliminated salaries based on degrees or experience, rewrote evaluations based on standardized testing which by the way isn't helping our students learn, and was basically an attempt to break the teachers' unions - will pass the second everybody gets sworn in at Tallahassee.  How quickly it will wreck our already wobble educational system isn't certain, but given the horrified response from a majority of citizens (even Republicans) back in April suggest this isn't a way to go.

There's also the fact that voted back into power was a Republican majority in the state legislature that was led by crooks and pork-barrel spenders, a majority that had little true interest in balancing the budget outside of cutting social programs down to practically nothing.  Having a hard core social conservative like Scott with his own history of financial criminal misdeeds holding the veto pen as Governor (and most likely ignore using it to cut wasteful projects) is going to make our budget woes worse.  Considering the state of Florida has 1) massive unemployment and 2) massive underemployment, anything that threatens our social safety nets is NOT A GOOD THING.

Looking at the national level, with Congress divided with a GOP-held House and a smaller Democrat-controlled Senate, creates an even bigger headache.

On the national level, the Republicans were elected with one mandate: Get Rid of Obama.  Seriously.  There is nothing else the Republicans have planned.  Anything they've claimed about balancing the budget?  When confronted to give specifics - "which programs would you cut first?  by how much?" - the party leadership waffled.  The ones who DID give any specifics tended to threaten cuts for things like Social Security and Defense that are still Third Rail issues both inside the Beltway and outside it.

So what should we expect from the Republican-led House?  We already know Congressman Issa is going to press for hundreds if not thousands of subpoenas to investigate Obama's White House on any useless issue, any hairbrained "scandal" that does not really exist merely for the purposes of embarrassing Obama.  And that will be minor league stuff to what Issa and the House are apt to do: Impeach Obama for being born in Kenya Hawaii by going after his Long Form birth certificate.  Hell, the Republican Party and their media cohorts with Limbaugh and FOX Not-News have spent the last two years decrying Obama as "illegal" - an illegitimate fraud who doesn't qualify for the Presidency - and getting millions of their Far Right voters to buy into that bullshit.  And now that they've got a branch of government that can "investigate" (aka harass) Obama on that "issue", they are going to have to appease a voting base that's been convinced Obama is a Socialist Boy From Kenya threatening our freedoms.  The Republican leadership created this fake meme: now they have to live or die by it.

The other campaign "pledges" of the GOP was to balance the budget and reduce the deficit.  And guess what?  Even this week after their massive win it's showing that the Republicans realize it's going to be harder than their campaigning suggested it would be.  There's already a struggle over the issue of the debt ceiling - an artificial cap on the amount our government can officially borrow - and while the Republicans are making noises that they will use the issue to force a deal with the Democrats in the Senate and White House, there's solid evidence that the large number of incoming Republicans (with their Teabagger agenda of "Damn All Hazards") are going to rail against the debt ceiling no matter what.  There's a good possibility that the GOP leadership that wants the compromise knowing that hitting the debt ceiling is disastrous is already losing their newcomers who find themselves obligated to defy the "corrupt old ways of bipartisanship"... something the GOP already defied the last two years just to get here...

Not to mention the fact that the Republicans are still stuck in the ideological mode of "Kill All Social Programs", "Kill Social Security", "Kill All Furriners", et al, and you've got a hard two years coming up until the 2012 elections.

Wanna hear something scary?  The state of Texas is now so solidly Republican, that they got not only the Governorship but also 2/3s majority in both their state houses, that they could easily pass state amendments all over the place.  Get ready to see Texas turn into a Right Wing "Utopia" of anti-choice, anti-woman, anti-workers rights, anti-regulation, anti-human decency inside of 5 minutes... 4... 3... 2...

And you know what?  Considering that our electoral system has been industrialized and turned into a $4 billion cash cow, we're never going to see an end to campaigning and calls for fund raising and all that.  We've already got jokers lining themselves up (even on the Democratic side, damn them) for the 2012 Presidential primaries.  STOP POLLING FOR 2012, GALLUP!  We don't need that crap right now...

On second thought, odds are the way our economy's gonna be the next two years - crappy and painful - I might as well get in on that action.  I'm gonna go get myself signed up to run for Congress in 2012.  I already got my slogans.  "Vote for ME.  I Need The Work."  Plugging away...

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Election Day Update 4: Two-Point-Five Million Floridians Just Voted a Crook Into Office

Sink Concedes To Scott.

The governorship of Florida is now in the hands of a man who committed such outrageous amounts of Medicare Fraud at his HMO business that the company had to force him out and pay $1.7 BILLION in settlements and fines.

The governorship of Florida is now in the hands of a man whose idea for creating jobs is to cut state employees off the payroll, deregulate across the board, and eliminating a corporate income tax that brought $1.8 billion in revenue to the state budget and claiming that will go toward creating jobs (even though history has shown TAX CUTS DON'T CREATE JOBS).

The governorship of Florida is now in the hands of a man with a track record of mismanagement, corruption, obsessive adherence to ideology even in the face of facts.

Considering that an investigation into Solantic's Medicare overbilling (GEE WHERE HAVE WE HEARD THAT BEFORE) is possible, how soon are we going to see policemen knocking at the Governor-Elect's door with a warrant?

To the 2,553,634 registered voters of Florida who went with Rick "MEDICARE FRAUD" Scott: this wasn't a secret.  This wasn't hidden on the bottom column of page 14 of the newspaper.  You saw a crook with the Royal GOP Seal (tm) tattooed on his ass and you still voted for him.  Out of some willful ignorance, some blind rage, or other unexplainable excuse.  Your neighbors had been screaming for months, hadn't they, about the damage this guy could do in office.  And you still voted for him.

I'm making a prediction here: I give it a year.  Scott is going to do something monumentally stupid and corrupt while in office.  It's gonna cause a massive investigation and there will be recrimination and tears and utter horror.  It will most likely damage this state's financial standing the way a sinkhole damages a car dealership.  And we are ALL going to get stuck with the bill, you sons of bitches.

Election Day Update 3: The Morning Sun Found Me No More Wise No Less Troubled

I woke up this morning dreading the dawn.  Mostly because I went to bed knowing the Florida Governor's race between Alex Sink and A GODDAMN CROOK was not then resolved, but with that GODDAMN CROOK holding a slim lead.

This morning, about the same: GODDAMN CROOK at 2,553,434, Sink at 2,500,510.  There's a ton of absentee ballots to count, and right now there's a 53,000 vote difference between sanity and HELL.

I'm staring at that voter count.  There is a part of me that absolutely refuses to comprehend how 2,553,434 of my fellow Floridians got suckered in by the GOP BULLSHIT that Rick Scott was qualified and ethical enough to serve as this state's Governor.

This is why you don't let GODDAMN CROOKS win any primaries, people.  This is why you don't live or die with a Two-Party system when one of the parties goes BATSHIT INSANE.

I want it noted for the record: If Rick GODDAMN CROOK Scott wins, and the state of Florida does indeed suffer in Hell with his bullshit rule (I will bet you within a year there will be a financial scandal in a Scott administration), I want those 2,553,434 to suffer for it, and not the rest of us.

And as for you GODDAMN DEMOCRATS.  There's 4.8 million registered in this state, and only 2.5 million bothered to show up?!  There's 2.3 million Democrats who ought to be FUCKING ASHAMED OF THEMSELVES.  Where the HELL WERE YOU?!

(NOTE: The entry title is a quote from Issue 3, page 22 of Watchmen.)

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Election Day Update 2: The Long Night

I had traveled to St. Pete to attend the Crist rally at the Savoy, took my laptop with me to see if they had free wifi.  Yeah, I know, it's a hotel, ain't nothing free, but you never know.  And yeah, you were right, it weren't free and besides I had no place to set down with it, so moot point...

Anyway, to report in... the Senate race was called pretty early for Rubio, still currently tracking about 50 percent of the overall vote, with Crist at 29 percent and Meek at 20 percent.  That most of the voters of the state went with a Far Right conservative with a history of pork barrel spending and a plan that unmistakably increased the deficit by $3 TRILLION... I cannot understand that.

In fact the whole damn state is disappointing me at the moment.  As of 10:20 pm EST, Rick "What Part of MEDICARE FRAUD DID YOU GODDAMN VOTERS OVERLOOK" Scott has a 50 percent to 45 percent lead over Alex Sink for the Governor's office.  There are no words for the combined levels of rage and despair I have for my state right now, and can only pray to God that the remaining ballots lean so far in Sink's favor to secure her victory over an OPENLY DOCUMENTED AND WELL-ESTABLISHED FRAUD.

I know my fellow residents of Florida are crazy.  We're renowned for it.  It's why we got our own FARK tag.  But for the love of GOD people, crazy AND ignorant DOES.  NOT.  HELP.

If there are any bright spots tonight, considering the Republican "Screw Everybody Under $250,000" Party is running rampant across this state and this nation?  At least Amendments 5 and 6 - the Fair Districts - are on pace to make over 60 percent of the votes (I hope that's enough, for some reason the news sources have not checked them off as wins and I am afeared these amendments might need 67 percent or 2/3rds to pass.  Oh Gods help us...)  Also, a good friend from the 1992 campaign, Trish Muscarella, seems to have won the Circuit Judge, 6th Circuit Group 18 election.

I hope the next update has me in a better mood.

Election Day Update 1: I Remember

This ad just got shown on Sullivan's site.  It's a perfect summary of why the Republicans CAN'T be trusted with our budgets, our health, our safety, our need for jobs.

Election Day November 2 2010

Lemme just say.  DOOM?

As of right now, I don't care for poll numbers. 

All I care about is getting everybody out to vote. 

All I care about is getting people to vote for Charlie Crist.

All I care about is getting people to vote for Amendments 5 and 6 for the state of Florida: we need those Fair Districts and bring an end to the damn gerrymandering.


All I care about is that the voters do the right thing and DON'T VOTE REPUBLICAN.  If the Republicans get control of the US Congress WE ARE SCREWED.

I'll be updating as often as needed.  I'm gonna see if I can bring a laptop to the Crist Celebration party tonight.

Wish us luck.  May GOD have Mercy on us all!