foolsguinea: (blonde)
I had a dream (and of course my dreams shift and change premises along the way) that somehow I had decided to go to a school for musicians. And I was out with these young people, playing some odd vaguely LARP-like game which I discovered at some point after I started required me to sing. I had unwittingly taken on something like the role of the female lead in a musical--because this is what they did for fun--when really I was just wanting to play in the nifty levitating tubs that represented boats. And I don't really know how to sing a tune from read music (thanks for being useless, grade school music classes) and I haven't really tried in years, and my voice was hoarse (maybe really; apparently my throat was drying out a bit in real life, and I'd been coughing before going to sleep), and I was thinking, Why did I decide to go to a school for musicians again? I'm not even really taking music classes. (Yeah, I don't know, it was a dream.)

Anyway, I woke up, and tried actually singing, and was surprised that I could. I was neither as hoarse nor as completely unable to carry a tune as I expected.
foolsguinea: (Default)


This was kind of interesting. Krugman on a British chat show.
foolsguinea: (Default)
So, how would you describe your political beliefs?

I'm a communist.

You mean, you're a Marxist, you subscribe to his theory of economic history.

No, no, I don't really believe in that. Not as such.

You mean you're a state socialist?

No, not a Stalinist.

You're a Maoist, Trotskyist, what?

No, I'm not a Stalinist, Trotskyist, Maoist, or even much of a Leninist. I'm not even a proper Marxist.

So, what kind of "communist" are you?

I'm a Milton Friedman commnunist.

Do you begin to get it now? I live in a country where I'm called a Leninist for supporting a progressive income tax, where I'm called a Nazi for believing in socialized medicine! Where if I say, like Harry Truman, that poor voters should vote their interests, because the rich bitches certainly are--

Now, now, watch your language. Don't get so excited. It's all right.

--if I say you should vote your interests, I'm told, "Son, you just don't understand." And what is supposed to be wrong with being upset about all this anyway? Are you on drugs?

Are you?

Are you doped up right now? Why are you so insistently calm? Why are you calm as they rob the small landholder in this country? Are they giving you your cut?

If I speak out against the fleecing of America by corrupt politicians and the special interests who fund them, I'm called anti-American. I believe with Milton goddamn Friedman that instead of just giving people food stamps and free schools, we should give them money. Money to be able to buy in, to own land, to raise themselves up, to become the equal of their "betters." And for that, I'm not called a communist, nor a Nazi, no, I'm called crazy. So fine, I'm a crazy Nazi Commie. That's my political affiliation. That's what a Harry Truman Democrat is in today's America.

We've made such a religion out of laissez-faire free market economics, that it's not enough to be free-marketers by our parents' standards! No, that would be the sin of moderation! No, we have to keep moving further and further into the right, past the right and into the crazy! Shut down the government agency that pays my salary! Why not! Rob the poor to give kickbacks to the rich! Abandon every useful state institution built by liberal and conservative alike, and by implication call your own grandparents Communists, foreign to "America," and traitors!

Wait, I don't understand. Is that what you're advocating, or--?

Idiot! It is the false religion of nouveau right-wingism, ersatz conservatism, that destroys the petit-bourgeois, the small landholder, in this country.

Well. A lot of people's grandparents really did believe in conservatism, and hate the government. People kept moving west to get away from the government where they were. It's a libertarian country.

Poppycock! They were trying to get to where they could own land, trying to get away from local private elites. Sure, a few cranks hated all authority, but they were freaks! They didn't build this country, or establish its institutions: its state colleges, its research institutes for agriculture and medicine, its public schools, all the things that made us a rich, powerful country! Did Wall Street build those? Did Wall Street even build the military and police that protect it now?

Well, as creators of wealth...

What?

Wall Street creates wealth.

No it doesn't. It invests in things so that money can be funneled off to investors. It doesn't do the real work of technological development, and the funding it actually provides to the actual inventors and manufacturers and service industries could be extracted from the wealthy in taxes and paid as grants to people who want to start businesses. Less wealth would flow to the upper crust, and that would be good for building a broader "ownership society" and a broader base of demand. Private investment would still exist, but alongside redistribution. And eventually beneficiaries of redistribution could invest themselves.

I don't know. I don't see how that works.

Pfft! Anyway, yes, some of your grandparents would have considered themselves conservative, and some more would be somewhat socially conservative now. But that doesn't mean they would sign on to the economic program of radical laissez-faire!

You really like those foreign words.

You speak English. Are you in England?

Just because someone would oppose transgender equality today doesn't mean they weren't economically progressive in their own time! You want to be a social traditionalist? Fine! But don't let that be an excuse for supporting people who are trying to rob you of opportunity!

Anyway, yeah, I'm a Harry Truman Democrat. But these days, you can call me...

THE MILTON FRIEDMAN COMMUNIST.

---

I wrote this a few days ago and put it up on "private." Showing it now because I see where Paul Krugman (himself a moderate who somehow became the "intellectual voice of the left") pointed out that Milton Friedman would be considered a left-socialist in the present climate. Maybe even in Europe, though Krugman didn't say that explicitly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=j1eLsEOKylk
foolsguinea: (DAWN)

"Oh, that's not fair!" you say? Blah blah, job creators, right? And the supply-siders are just offering us alternatives to socialism?

http://thisishistorictimes.com/2011/03/the-invisible-hand/

Here's what supply-side economics really is:




So:
foolsguinea: (Default)
Decided to read some mightygodking, 'cos it's been a while. I keep opening tabs to look up references. I am not so plugged into culture. Anyway, in the process of all that, I ended up with two cool videos.



http://torontoist.com/2012/04/rocket-rhythms-guitarist-jim-greenham/
foolsguinea: (Default)
Nine months old, bears repeating:
http://newsflavor.com/politics/world-politics/republican-sabotage-gop-again-rejects-own-budget-position/
Republicans in March said they wanted to see an 85:15 ratio in cuts to tax increases. Dems offered 83:17. Republicans said F you, we’re outta here. President says that’s childish. DC pundits declare president a dick.

I am not shitting you.

...

Consider:

Mitt Romney’s Massachusetts health insurance mandate morphs into the Affordable Care Act, but Republicans suddenly learn to hate the individual mandate at the heart of both plans

Republicans insist tax cuts never have to be “paid for” with spending cuts, then demand that the 1099 reporting provisions that have the effect of increasing tax liabilities for business be repealed; Democrats agree to repeal them (thus lowering business tax liabilities), and Republicans block the move because the cuts aren’t paid for

Senate GOP demands a vote on permanent extension of Bush tax cuts, is offered such a vote, then blocks their own deal

January’s Senate rules reform fight ends with an agreement that, in part, includes a deal to pass a bill reducing the number of presidential nominations requiring Senate approval, thus lowering the number of potential filibusters gumming up the works. When the bill is ready to move to the floor, Republicans attempt to block it

Since we’re going by playground rules today and calling people dicks, we might as well call this what it is. In G-rated parlance, it’s Lucy and the football. In MSNBC-rated parlance, it’s fucking bullshit, and everyone on the playground should kick you in the ass.


~~~

And now...
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/02/opinion/krugman-pink-slime-economics.html
Paul Krugman calls out Paul Ryan's "budget" as the most awesomely dishonest bit of fiscal politics in the nation's history:
So the Ryan budget is a fraud; Mr. Ryan talks loudly about the evils of debt and deficits, but his plan would actually make the deficit bigger even as it inflicted huge pain in the name of deficit reduction. But is his budget really the most fraudulent in American history? Yes, it is.

To be sure, we’ve had irresponsible and/or deceptive budgets in the past. Ronald Reagan’s budgets relied on voodoo, on the claim that cutting taxes on the rich would somehow lead to an explosion of economic growth. George W. Bush’s budget officials liked to play bait and switch, low-balling the cost of tax cuts by pretending that they were only temporary, then demanding that they be made permanent. But has any major political figure ever premised his entire fiscal platform not just on totally implausible spending projections but on claims that he has a secret plan to raise trillions of dollars in revenue, a plan that he refuses to share with the public?

What’s going on here? The answer, presumably, is that this is what happens when extremists gain complete control of a party’s discourse: all the rules get thrown out the window. Indeed, the hard right’s grip on the G.O.P. is now so strong that the party is sticking with Mr. Ryan even though it’s paying a significant political price for his assault on Medicare.


~~~

Find me a witness amongst these shades. :(
foolsguinea: (fanfic)
http://www.commondreams.org/view/2009/01/26-0
Democrats, [Jude Wanniski] said, had been able to be "Santa Clauses" by giving people things from the largesse of the federal government. Republicans could do that, too – spending could actually increase. Plus, Republicans could be double Santa Clauses by cutting people's taxes! For working people it would only be a small token – a few hundred dollars a year on average – but would be heavily marketed. And for the rich it would amount to hundreds of billions of dollars in tax cuts. The rich, in turn, would use that money to import or build more stuff to market, thus increasing supply and stimulating the economy. And that growth in the economy would mean that the people still paying taxes would pay more because they were earning more.

There was no way, Wanniski said, that the Democrats could ever win again. They'd have to be anti-Santas by raising taxes, or anti-Santas by cutting spending. Either one would lose them elections.


I call it the triple bribe. Bribe taxpayers with unfunded cuts, bribe contractors with unpaid-for spending, and then sell bonds to cover the debt, letting the bondholders think they're shareholders investing in the government. Awful.
foolsguinea: (no one is illegal)
http://www.alternet.org/story/154453/why_the_american_empire_was_destined_to_collapse/
This is depressing. Actually, I think there are Americans who believe in more than the hustle. It's the subculture in power that's mad.

http://www.alternet.org/economy/154426/what_if_the_%26ldquo%3Bbroken_windows%26rdquo%3B_theory_were_applied_to_wall_street/
This makes a good point about how letting the finance sector be "acceptably corrupt" only encourages a general lawlessness.

...so yeah.
foolsguinea: (no one is illegal)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/08/indefinite-detention-terrorism-bill-_n_1332256.html
A pair of lawmakers on Thursday offered a bill that would repeal laws that allow the indefinite detention of Americans and others by the military without trial.

OK, here's the plan. I'm gonna call my Senator and Congressman and see if they'll support this. I guess I'll call likely challengers too. If no support from either the Democrat or Republican frontrunners for one of those offices for restoring rule of law, then I need some money for a filing fee, and a ride to the state capitol, and I'm gonna primary 'em.

Because really.
foolsguinea: (blonde)
http://www.cracked.com/blog/6-things-rich-people-need-to-stop-saying/
"We do not accept that ours will ever be a nation of haves and have-nots; we must always be a nation of haves and soon-to-haves."
-- Mitch Daniels, Governor of Indiana
...
You're intentionally conflating "anyone can have the moonshine" with "everyone can have it." And you are doing it because you're hoping that we will all be too busy fighting each other to ask why there was only one jar.
But if we do ask, the response will probably be something like ...



Oh, wait, that's an ad. But it fits.

~ ~ ~

http://whatever.scalzi.com/2005/09/03/being-poor/
Being poor is having to live with choices you didn’t know you made when you were 14 years old.
Being poor is getting tired of people wanting you to be grateful.
Being poor is knowing you’re being judged.
foolsguinea: (Default)
http://www.real-time-with-bill-maher-blog.com/real-time-with-bill-maher-blog/2012/3/7/mr-inevitable.html
Campaign posters for the inevitability of Mitt Romney. Not for Mitt Romney, but for the inevitability of nominating this guy they apparently decided to nominate.

Whatever, just so long as the deficit party loses the general.

...OK, this is mad, but I need something to do: Should I run for Congress, run for state legislature, quixotically primary our boringly moderate US Senator, or just advocate for proportional representation? With a donation of few grand, I may be able to do all of them at once!
foolsguinea: (Default)


If you want people to concede in the secular arena that your religion is The Truth, I suggest yo do the same. Otherwise, stop asking too much.
foolsguinea: (mirror)
The very cute Руслана (Ruslana):

Шалала - "Shalala," pretty fun.


Дика енергія - She reminds me of Leeloo and Æon Flux in this video.


Відлуння мрій (feat T-Pain) - in which Ruslana appears to be Ukrainian Shakira in space.


Actually, the more I find of hers, the more convinced I become that she is in fact Hutsul Shakira.

Kolomyjka - I think this has some folk influence, Hutsul I guess.


Dance with the Wolves - Ruslana being a bit political and tough:
foolsguinea: (bee)
Mitt Romney won the Maine Presidential Primary with 2,000 votes.

Not BY 2,000 votes. WITH 2,000 votes.

In a state with 1.3 million people, exactly 5,585 of them cared about the Republican nominee for President enough to bother to vote. In an open caucus, not limited to voters who had registered as a Republican. Even an unregistered voter could show up, register, and vote.

It wasn’t a case of bad weather. The weather forecast was that there was a chance of two to three inches of snow. Which never fell. And anyway, in Maine, two to three inches of snow is a light sprinkle.

The real winner of the 2012 Maine Republican Presidential Caucus was a French fellow named Je M’En Fou. (Translation: “I don’t give a damn.”) Mr. Fou got 99.5% of the vote. If Kim Jong Il were still alive, he would be jealous.

To show you how low this turnout was, when I ran for Congress in 2008, I got almost 100 times as many votes as Mitt Romney did on Saturday. In a congressional district half of the size of the State of Maine.

The Republicans must think that GOTV doesn’t mean Get Out The Vote, but rather Go Observe TeleVision.

The right wing has been a manservant to the One Percent for as long as I remember. In fact, a friend recently suggested to me that GOP actually stands for “Greedy One Percent.” But now, it seems, they can’t even get one percent to show up and vote.

You get the feeling that if you actually cornered most voters and asked them to choose among Romney, Gingrich, Santorum and Paul, they would run screaming from the room.

Which makes me feel optimistic about the November election.

Courage,

Alan Grayson

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