Conservatives have rally safety concerns – Alarmed at cam-toting liberals

Conservative protesters are feeling threatened by pro-health insurance reform liberals who are coming to congressional and presidential town hall meetings with holstered video cameras strapped to their hips. So says an organizer of the anti-health insurance protesters who march outside the public forums.

“It sends the wrong message in our society,” said former Texas Congressman Dick Armey, now Executive Director of the Pinkies Up Tea Party Coalition, which describes itself as “a patriotic front.”

Armey is speaking out after his members contacted him about pro-reform counter-protesters carrying cameras in the open. One man came to a rally in Raleigh, North Carolina, with a Sony HDR-CX520V slung over his shoulder. The incidents make Armey’s fellow conservatives nervous.

“Cameras are so small now they can be easily concealed under a coat or in a bag,” said Armey. “Suppose a conservative is shouting down the public option. Tensions rise. Heated words are exchanged. Next thing you know, a liberal pulls out a camera and: bang. A patriotic Republican gets splattered all over the blogosphere,” he said.

Shirley A. Nutt of Westmost, North Carolina, says she is worried at the potential of running into camera-wielding Democrats at rallies, forums, and other chances to disrupt public discourse. “Takin’ my picture is the kind of threat of violence we’ve come to expect from anti-gun, anti-death penalty, anti-war liberals,” she declared.

“Besides, it steals little bits of my soul,” Nutt added.

Law enforcement officials in North Carolina say there are no laws against openly carrying video cameras in public. “Or concealed ones, for that matter,” said Sheriff Andrew Taylor of Mayberry. Taylor went on to say: “What I’m seeing a lot are people carrying concealed intellects.”

Worries over safety
A recent victim of a camera-wielding assailant.

ABC/Disney looks to Ragebot for inspiration

When I wrote my Dancing with Statesmen post I was kidding people. It wasn’t a suggestion.

ABC announced the new line up for Dancing With the Stars this week and I was shocked to learn that Tom DeLay is joining the cast.  Yes they’ve invited the former House Majority leader to burn the floor.  I guess Hollywood truly is out of ideas because in this case life really does imitate fiction.  All I can say is it was my idea Disney execs.  I know you’re just a bunch of 20 something Wharton grads, but you need to learn the meaning of the word satire and stop stealing from bloggers.  I am not your muse, but I can be bought.  So… “Where’s my freakin’ movie check?!”

Obama health plan points the way – Now entire government could become co-ops

Only days after signaling it is willing to drop a public option from a health care reform package, the Obama administration is indicating that it is willing to end the public option for the entire federal government as well.

“If moving away from public options is how things are going to get through Congress, we’re going to look hard at it as a best practice,” President Obama said today at a town hall-style forum in Washington DC’s Capitol Hill neighborhood.

Capitol Hill was chosen for the event by administration strategists as a test of the president’s coattails. The area was strong for Obama in last November’s election, but has recently seen a large amount of gentrification resulting from reverse “white flight” from the K Street district.

Although a clearly well-heeled audience, many in attendance at the meeting exhibited the boisterousness that has materialized at many such forums held by senators and representatives during their August break. One man, Cent Konrad of Bismarck, North Dakota, shouted out several times until he got Obama’s attention.

“Since insurance corporations can’t compete against a public option, what about the rest of government — which is public by definition and therefore socialist? What other corporations are having their freedom restricted?” Konrad challenged Obama.

Obama moved quickly to reassure Konrad’s concerns. “Public options are not the entirety of government, any more than it is the entirety of health care reform,” Obama said. “This is just one sliver, one aspect of it.”

Following his remarks concerning best practice, Obama added that he is looking with increasing favor on applying the so-called “co-op” alternative to a wide range of government programs, to which another man, Bax Maucus of Helena, Montana, responded favorably.

“I really like co-ops because co-op means cooperating with private corporations. That’s what 45% of the American people voted for, and it’s what 40% of the Senate will allow,” said Maucus, who later identified himself to reporters as “just a concerned citizen.”

Obama told Maucus he would do all he can to press for co-op solutions. “During my four years as a senator, I learned from Harry Reid that majority opinion cannot determine American policy. So we’re not going to bow to the majority on health insurance, not on withdrawal from Iraq, not on the economy, and not on our foreign policy,” said the president.

Obama then personalized the issue by relating a recent experience he had with co-operating. “When I was going to get my girls a dog, we proposed a public pound option — a nice beagle, let’s say,” recalled the president.

“But Mitch McConnell called the public pound option socialistic, and he reminded Malia that a bureaucrat would stand between her and her choice of dog,” Obama said. “So we co-operated, and got a Portuguese water dog from a private source.”

“A co-op solution worked for Portuguese water dogs, so I think this proves co-ops deserve a chance to solve our health insurance crisis,” he said.

The co-op approach is seeing an uptick in the opinion polls for Obama. A telephone survey of residents of Pyongyang, North Korea, shows 100% support if the president were to convert the U.S. State Department into a co-op.

Madoff escape plan foiled – Oversold tunnel shares

An escape plot by Bernard Madoff was foiled recently when the disgraced financier was turned in by a disgruntled accomplice, federal corrections officials report.

Madoff, serving 150 years for a Ponzi scheme that defrauded his investment clients of an estimated $65 billion, has been placed in solitary confinement and deprived of access to his Ameritrade account.

In a statement released by Butner Federal Prison Director Ward N. Frandle, Madoff had circulated an ‘escape prospectus’ among the prison population, proposing a 1,500 foot escape tunnel under the prison’s walls. The work would be done by 1,500 ‘shareholders’ — fellow prisoners digging one foot each, reports Frandle.

Each ‘tunnel investor’ was told by Madoff to come to his cell at a scheduled time, according to the report. “Prisoner Madoff told each investor he was the first to dig. After a investor finished with his 12 inch segment, Madoff would fill it back in and await the next victim.”

“Madoff essentially oversold the escape tunnel 1,500 times,” Frandle said.

The plan came to light just after midnight Monday morning, when all 1,500 investors rendezvoused at Madoff’s cell with their luggage.

Mass Transit In Terms of Lanes

Why driving into Manhattan is crazy and mass transit is the ONLY practical option:

At best, it would take 167 inbound lanes, or 84 copies of the Queens Midtown Tunnel, to carry what the NYC Subway carries over 22 inbound tracks through 12 tunnels and 2 (partial) bridges.

Translating that to Babylon by the Bay, let’s consider BART through the Transbay Tube, the only real alternative to driving on the seismically unsound SF-Oakland Bay Bridge:

  • Of BART’s 370K trips per day, roughly 200,000 end in San Francisco
  • So, conservatively, 100,000 of those are probably commuters coming from the East Bay
  • The Bay Bridge handles 270K cars per day, of which, at least 60K are inbound to SF in the morning
  • So, at 1.2 commuters per car, the Bay Bridge would have to handle almost 85K more cars during the morning rush
  • In other words, we would need to increase the number of inbound lanes from 5 to 12 just to handle BART commuters–or…we could just build a second bridge

Mass transit everywhere isn’t just AN alternative.  It’s the ONLY alternative.

The planet is not really in deep kakka, it just feels that way.

Ask any Australian conservative (Liberal/National Party) parliamentarian and they will tell you so. Actually John Howard’s old attack dog in the Senate, Bill Heffernan, will go further and add a hand dance to his words of rejection.

HEFFERNANIn a way, the Senate rejection of the proposed Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS for dildo’s!) was quite correctly supported by the Greens, but for totally different reasons. The ETS is an inadequate concept when dealing with climate change issues, but the bloody conservative reject any talk of climate change, period!

But these conservatives still have a bag load of other tricks. The ‘up yours’ Heffernan was also quoted this week (without the hand dance) saying ”I don’t mind gay people, I just want you to stop f—ing the kids.”

In the lower house another former Howard attack dog, former seminarian, also a Liberal leadership aspirant and currently opposition families spokesman, Tony Abbot reported during a public speech; his teenage daughter called him a ”lame, gay churchy loser”. A bundle of laughs.

Oddly enough the gay community took exception to his clear implication that gay is a pejorative. The family conscious people were a little pissed off that he should make a private family discussion a matter of public interest.

Caring sensitive new-age types, the lot of them! Quite obviously these people would not recognise deep kakka, even when it is lapping their earlobes.

Blogs Against Kleptocracy – Nonsense Taxes (Redux)

Back in March of 2008, I started the Blogs Against Kleptocracy series with a post about industries imposing ‘nonsense taxes’ on consumers, taxes that compensate an industry for either failing to make money or failing to adequately address fundamental changes to their business model.  And to illustrate the point, I made up some examples of nonsense taxes including this:

Big Coal will lobby for a ‘green tax’ that compensates them for revenue lost due to consumers switching to green power generation, buying energy efficient appliances, and turning off lights. Reduce your electricity consumption by 20%, and BANG! the tax kicks in.

At the time it seemed like a joke, but a year later Xcel Energy is proposing just such a tax—in this case a fee for customers who have the temerity to install solar panels, cutting their energy consumption or eliminating it entirely. Don’t use enough of Xcel’s energy, and bang the fee kicks in. And to add insult to injury, Xcel describes this as a way of ‘leveling the playing field’ for their non-solar customers, arguing that solar customers are getting a ‘free ride’. Despite the fact that no non-solar Xcel customer pays extra to fund anything having to do with solar energy redistribution or energy efficiency incentives.

So now, in the Kleptocracy that this country has become, consumers will progressively be penalized for not consuming.

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A Tweet Too Far

There are some things in this world that you should just not tweet.  The birth of your child, for instance.  Let’s follow along:

— “My water just broke. MY GOD! We may need a tsunami alert here…”

— “Contractions are getting more frequen—ooh…OUCH!”

— “WTF is this?! A baby elephant…AUUUGGGGGGHHHHH!”

— “Push?! I’m am pushing you Nurse Ratched wannabee!”

— “Get away from me! I’m never having sex with you again you hairy baboo—EEEEEEE-AAAAAHHHH!!!!”

Conservatives oppose forcible health – “Save our freedom to be sick”

(Upland, CA) Members of Congress from coast to coast are having their eyes opened this week, as they hear from constituents opposed to health care reform.

“We’re speaking out to save our freedom to be sick,” said Dee Fibrilasian, one of many self-described ‘sickers’ — people who believe illness is a right.

Fibrilasian and like-minded sickers turned out here in force Monday for a midday town hall meeting held by 54th District Representative Dino Frandle, a member of the House Democratic ‘blue dog’ coalition. They hooted, hollered and booed as Frandle expressed cautious support for reforms that would cover additional Americans while leaving intact the private insurance system.

“Forcibly insuring more people is the opposite of the direction we should be headed,” shouted one woman who declined to give her name because, she explained, she had called in sick to be able to attend the meeting.

“What will happen to our sick leave, if socialized Obamacare makes sure we are too healthy to use it?” she wondered. She went on to say she feared she might have to quit one of her three jobs, if cheaper insurance made it possible for employers to raise pay.

Fibrillasian said she agreed with statements former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin made on her Facebook page, alleging reform would lead to government ‘death panels’ pruning high-cost senior citizens and the developmentally disabled from insurance pools. “What makes government think it can kill people better than the private sector?” Fibrilasian asked.

After the town hall meeting Rep. Frandle said he was impressed by the turnout and by the forceful way the sickers stated their opinions. “They were certainly loud,” he said as he departed for a luncheon, a reelection fundraiser with employees of Aetna and Pfizer.

Ancient Chinese secret?

Want to quell a riot?  Break out the happy face stickers!  In a move so bizarre I’m tempted to believe it’s a joke the Communist Party in China has started a program of ethnic unity based on handing out happy faced stickers.  The slogan for this brilliant plan?

A smile is the common language of all nationalities

Awww, that’s kind of sweet.  Truth be told though, their motives are a lot more base.  “We tell the public that without ethnic unity, nobody will get rich.”, said Li Han a 22-year old volunteer.  So it’s truly money and the possession thereof that should motivate you not to kill your Uighur neighbors.  Got that?