Friday, February 12, 2010

Be Nice to the Banks and the Economy Will Recover

Stephen Schwarzman

Jesus H Christ facing foreclosure, but I have been so wrong. I should have been trusting the banksters to save us all from the dismal economy we seem to face. Silly me.

Stephen Schwarzman, CEO of the Blackstone Group, is so rich that he threw himself a 60th birthday party in 2007 that cost $3 million, featured Rod Stewart and Patti LaBelle as entertainers, and was attended by 100 close friends, including Donald Trump, Barbara Walters, John Thain (at the time chairman of the NY Stock Exchange), and Maria Bartoromo, the “Money Honey” on CNBC’s business channel.

That was the year that Schwarzman took home $400 million in pay, referred to in the private equity business as “carried interest”, because that way it was taxed only at a rate of 15% rather than the 35% ordinary income rate that “ordinary” people pay. That was also the year Schwarzman completed the biggest leveraged buyout ever, the debt-laden purchase of Equity Office Properties for $38 billion. It was the absolute peak of the real estate market and today represents one of the greatest blunders in US real estate history.

I had no fucking way of knowing Schwarzman was going to make everyone all well. Egg on face is so fucking embarrassing.

Could someone explain why so many of these assholes seem to have their hands out? They unabashedly beg more than moi. so rich that he threw himself a 60th birthday party in 2007 that cost $3 million...

Three mil? I can't afford a fucking used laptop and he blows $3 million for a fucking party? If that ain't equality I don't know what is.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: ,

Why the swastika doesn't upset me

Buddha temple swastika

Although the Nazis used the inverted swastika (facing right instead of left), the Buddhists have used it facing left and right.

Buddha statue

I've encountered the swastikas often at Buddhist temples in several countries and the temples were places of calm and serenity. No jack boots on the monks, not even Doc Martins or Nike's. More like barefooted.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , ,

Nazi swastika adorns Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue

Look closely and
you'll see a model

This to me is a classic example of a non-issue issue.

2010's Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, which includes such beauties as Israeli supermodels Bar Refaeli and Esti Ginzburg, includes a photo of a model posing near a World War II-era fighter plane, complete with Nazi swastikas.

The image of model Genevieve Morton leaning against an American warplane sporting WWII 'kill flags' did not reportedly make it to the printed edition of the annual swimsuit issue, but is, however presented in the magazine's popular website. [I fuck at punctuation, but this sucks big time]

They are 'kill flags' which should anger Germans more than Israelis. The "problem" seems much like the old saw: when you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

It wasn't published, but we can still raise hell about it because we did find it.

Now, having said all that shit. SI screwed up by posing the model with the visible swastikas which inevitably piss off an assortment of the public.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , ,

Quote of the day

Oh, this is too God damn funny:

"I want to tell you this. There are no dissidents in China." [ed- paraphrased]

Got it. No fucking dissidents in China. Now isn't it pretty damn funny I could find one in less than a minute? What the fuck, there're dissidents in my family and we number 5, not several billion.

Maybe the guy's unaware of dissidents because they've locked their asses away.

Labels: , ,

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Wahington state ponders privatizing liquor sales

Washington state is hardly the exception. Several states are considering the same.

In Washington state you can't get hard liquor without going to a state run store. It's been that way since 1933 when prohibition ended. But this year lawmakers are grappling with a $2.6 billion budget nightmare. And that has state lawmakers wondering whether selling booze is worth the cost. But as correspondent Chantal Anderson reports state liquor regulators are pushing back.

This privatization makes no sense to my mind for 4 reasons.

First, if a private company or companies can make money. The state should be able to rake in the profits and do it better.

Second, privatization has to raise the price of alcohol unless the state is to take in less than it does now.

Third, and this is my main objection and why I believe this is a bad idea. Kids will have much easier access to the hard stuff.

Knowing the Washington state system which limited access to liquor, I was surprised when visiting California where any retail outlet could sell alcohol. Advertising and access were everywhere including the mini-marts, bodegas and grocery stores where children were allowed. A kid can't enter a Washington state liquor store (usually).

The fourth reason is simple. What good is limiting cigarette advertising so children aren't tempted when the same outlet is selling Jack Daniels in the corner store? What am I missing?

How about this? Limit advertising and access and locate state-run liquor stores in a corner of existing supermarkets which are always conveniently located. Or come up with a better marketing plan. I'm easy open to suggestions.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , ,


Timothy Egan has it exactly right. As soon as houses are left sitting empty kids in the neighborhoods will start by throwing rocks through the windows unless they're all boarded up. Then they'll vandalize them. Then the squatters will move in and any local rats, raccoons, mice, cockroaches, birds, squirrels. Then you have it even better... meth labs and drug dealers or they become the homes of terrorist cells.

It’s not our cities that are in big trouble: what will fill the empty homes and lots of suburban America?

If the houses aren't as valuable now as when they were mortgaged, just wait to see to what values they drop.

Have a nice day.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , ,

Father Admits to Waterboarding 4-Year-Old Daughter Because She Could Not Recite Alphabet

We progressive bloggers throw the term torture around a lot vis-a-vis waterboarding.

What happens when the two terms are inextricably treated as equivalent in court?

Here’s a horrific story: A 27-year-old soldier in Tacoma, Washington has allegedly admitted to police that he waterboarded his four-year-old daughter – mere weeks after winning custody of her — because she could not recite the alphabet.

Because you know the prosecutor will do his/her best to equate the two terms.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , ,

A rose by any other name...

Citi to let distressed homeowners stay for 6 mos. reads the headline.

This is just a delayed foreclosure without all the paperwork. After 6 months the family is still put out on the street.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Citigroup Inc. plans to let homeowners on the verge of foreclosure stay in their homes for six months - if they turn over the deed to their property.

Citi said Thursday it is launching the pilot program, dubbed "Foreclosure Alternatives," this week in Texas, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey and Ohio. Initially, about 1,000 homeowners are expected to participate. Citi may expand the program nationwide.

In a normal foreclosure, a lender assumes legal control of the property and evicts the homeowner. But Citi's program, like other "deed in lieu of foreclosure" efforts, allows the homeowner to avoid a completed foreclosure. While the owner must still leave the home after six months, the program results in a less severe hit to the borrower's credit score.


Also, many states have lengthened the time it takes to complete a foreclosure, making the process more time-consuming and expensive for the lending industry.

Then too, Citi forestalls for six months the point they have to account for the loss of these "loans" they still have on the books.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: ,


CNN just did a story on the current wave of snowfall on the east coast of the US and they referred to it as Snowzilla (complete with graphic of Yeti).

Now where did they get that term? Could it have been here?

Labels: ,

Subliminal advertising?

Note: Headline links to source.


Serial blogging

I'm with Sean-Paul Kelley (the Agonist) who's with Paul Krugman who's with Simon Johnson who's with Bloomberg.

President Barack Obama said he doesn’t “begrudge” the $17 million bonus awarded to JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon or the $9 million issued to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. CEO Lloyd Blankfein, noting that some athletes take home more pay.

The president, speaking in an interview, said in response to a question that while $17 million is “an extraordinary amount of money” for Main Street, “there are some baseball players who are making more than that and don’t get to the World Series either, so I’m shocked by that as well.”

“I know both those guys; they are very savvy businessmen,” Obama said in the interview yesterday in the Oval Office with Bloomberg BusinessWeek, which will appear on newsstands Friday. “I, like most of the American people, don’t begrudge people success or wealth. That is part of the free- market system.”

This goes far beyon blue dog Democrat speak.

And later in the article is this fuckingly Hilarious item:

Obama sought to combat perceptions that his administration is anti-business and trumpeted the influence corporate leaders have had on his economic policies.

Please remind me. The people of what republic voted Obama into office to help them; like with real health care reform, a few jobs for the chronically unemployed, preventing homelessness, putting an end to Wall Street and bankster rapes of the masses?

Labels: , , , , ,

Edacashun is importent on the net

This started out as a rant about how Honda has an airbag recall which was mentioned several times on CNN yesterday and nowhere else that I could find.

But it turned into a diatribe about education. Please read the damn comments.

A couple three things stand out. First is how many see CONSPIRACY to destroy the reputations of Honda and Toyota and thus prop up US auto makers. And secondly, how many people posted comments with all the literacy, spelling, verb tenses, verb cases and grammar of hamsters.

I find it too fucking difficult to catalog all the errors. So I won't of course.

And what would comments be without many complaints about Obama?

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , , , ,

This isn’t a bombshell?

David Paterson

Sorry, but I can't buy into the tone of this post.

I'm no expert on Chicago style politics, but from what I do know it's simple.

Obama would not merely bring down one small potatoes ass such as Paterson.

PIX News has learned that federal prosecutors are investigating Governor David Paterson’s awarding of a lucrative contract to a politically connected group to run a gaming center at Aqueduct Raceway.

The embattled Governor who appears to have dodged the bullet of rumors and innuendo that had been circulating over a purported “bombshell” story being prepared by the New York Times, is now part of a probe by the Eastern District U.S. Attorney’s office in Brooklyn.

If Obama were playing Chicago style politics he'd have his HCR (health care reform) and most everything else he wanted. He might later be in deep shit about leaving bodies buried in shallow graves, but not for exposing too common rape of the common electorate.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Why Obama Is Ignoring Europe

I'm too fucking lazy to grab all the links, but it ain't only Europe.

Try Russia, China, Korea, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Palestine, Japan... ad nauseam.

Any instances where Obama has improved US relationships with foreign countries after Shrub's horrible administration he's pretty much pissed away by now.

There's an old (really) routine by Mort Sahl where he says the President is standing before a globe with all the trouble spots colored black. He continues, "So the President is standing in front of this black globe..."

Its all black out there, folks.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

Investigation Reveals Prius Brake Problems May Precede 2010 Model-Year

2010 Toyota Corolla

This may turn out to be much larger than currently exposed.

Something I'm curious about is what about cars which have been sold second hand. Are those people aware they may be driving faulty autos?

Toyota officials face a grueling day of testimony before Congress about the company's ongoing recalls and quality problems. Meanwhile, the automaker is preparing a third action, this one to address a serious brake problem with its 2010 Prius hybrid. But if Toyota focuses solely on the current model-year, will it be addressing only part of the problem with the world's most popular hybrid? An investigative report by finds evidence to indicate problems with the Prius brakes may not be limited to the 2010 model-year. Owners such as Jeff Zuhlke of Wisconsin, Susan Yonish of North Carolina, and others report numerous occasions when their own Prius hybrids experienced issues similar to unintended brake release. As with the now documented problems with the 2010 Prius, these and others owners have filed a significant number of complaints with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that appear to identify problems dating back a number of years before the current model-year.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: ,

This is something no one could have predicted

¿usted está cagando yo, derecho? (You are shitting me, right?)!

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

SPIIDERWEB™ is here to save the day

John Thain (grabbing for more)

OK, here's my plan. I'm open to offers from any company. Will attend no meetings nor go on any junkets nor require a company car, airplane, fancy office. I'll shop a lot at supermarkets and department stores where I'll press those in charge to take money from your company by way of loans. In addition I'll bake and sell cookies to bring in more money and even add a "donate" button on the company website.

In my spare time I'll lay-off or off-load hundreds, hell, thousands, of people (not you).

And you get all of this for 3 years at the remarkably low price of $2,003 net per month with no annual bonuses (health care with dental and optical included). At the end of the 3 years you will pay me $1m net in severance pay. You have to admit you won't find a better deal than that.

Shit. I'll even bring my own lunch.

I'm waiting for your email.

John Thain is getting a second chance.

CIT Group Inc., the lender that is trying to regain its former stature after almost collapsing during the financial industry crisis, said late Sunday it has hired the former Merrill Lynch & Co. CEO as its chairman and chief executive.

Thain is also trying to repair his own image. He brokered Merrill's sale to Bank of America Corp. as the credit crisis peaked in the fall of 2008, but was forced to resign after the deal closed because of controversy over employee bonus payments and mounting losses at the investment bank.

CIT, which lends to more than 3,000 businesses including supermarkets and department stores, went through bankruptcy reorganization late last year after it failed to restructure billions of dollars in debt. It was also hurt by rising loan losses as more customers fell behind on repaying loans.

Thain, 54, is taking over a company that has seen its business shrink dramatically as customers fled. He'll have to find a way to bring in new customers. And he'll have to find new sources of funding because short-term lending known as commercial paper essentially disappeared during the credit crisis and has yet to revive.

Labels: , ,

Too liberal for Obama

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: ,

The second coming of Shrub

Glenn Greenwald

I often avoid reading Glenn Greenwald because: 1) I read slowly and 2) he writes as if each word will give him an extra hour of life.

However, this is a must read. For example:

As has been voluminously documented here, one of the most notable aspects of the first year of the Obama presidency has been how many previously controversial Bush/Cheney policies in the terrorism and civil liberties realms have been embraced. Even Obama's most loyal defenders often acknowledge that, as Michael Tomasky recently put it, "the civil liberties area has been [Obama's] worst. This is the one area in which the president's actions don't remotely match the candidate's promises." From indefinite detention and renditions to denial of habeas rights, from military commissions and secrecy obsessions to state secrets abuses, many of the defining Bush/Cheney policies continue unabated under its successor administration.

Despite all that, there is substantial political pressure from all directions for Obama to reverse the very few decisions where he actually deviated from Bush/Cheney radicalism in these areas. In the wake of extreme political pressure, mostly from Democrats, the White House just forced Eric Holder to retreat on his decision to try Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in New York City, and numerous Democrats now appear prepared to join with the GOP to cut-off funding for civilian trials altogether, forcing the administration to try all Terrorists in military commissions or just hold them indefinitely. The administration has created a warped multi-tiered justice system where only a select few even get civilian trials -- those whom they know in advance they can convict -- yet there are growing signs that the President will abandon even that symbolic, piecemeal nod to due process.

I never expected great things from Obama. Great things rarely happen in Washington D.C., but I did hold out hope he would undo the things Shrub did to fuck up the principals upon which the US was based.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Palin advises Obama to 'declare war on Iran'

The charismatic Ms Pee is now trying to become an adviser to Obama. Bless her fucking black heart.

President Barack Obama won’t be re-elected in 2012 unless he can “toughen up” on national security, according to Sarah Palin. The former Governor of Alaska believes that declaring war on Iran could help the president get re-elected.
Moose, bear, beaver, belugas, people. Seems Ms Pee is predisposed to killing to achieve an end. Now assuming she always eats what she kills... ew!

I need to be perfectly clear on this if I haven't already. Killing people should never be a God damn political ploy. Anyone who suggests it as a desirable option should be viewed as a lunatic and avoided the same as one would avoid that lady at Wendy's® who is having a conversation with herself.

By the way, the lady at Wendy's® appeared to be winning the discussion with herself.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , ,

Monday, February 08, 2010

The Joke’s On You (NSFW)

Yes this is Photoshoped, but still fun

This is a good post (the link).

My first reaction when I realize EVERYONE among progressive blogs were mentioning Ms. P because I didn't like the constant exposure and attention.

But we're in the Bush zone. He was a totally inept idiot who could never get elected and we ended up with 8 fucking years of his ruinous decisions and his destruction of the foundation of our country by stripping the US of Constitutional rights.

We can't make the same mistake again. Please blog constantly about Ms P and make sure everyone out there realizes what a catastrophic mistake it would be to put that woman in the White House in any God damn capacity.

Note: Headline links to source.

Sorry Obama but I see it as Snowzilla

The East coast snow is not an end-of-the-world scenario. Its a monster natural attack which will, by all accounts, recur soon. Sorry, sir.

Snowpocalypse [Obama's term is “snowmageddon”] was fun--that is, until our power went out and the heat vanished. That was two days ago. So I've been contending with the basics of survival: food and shelter.

Quit your bitching. Millions of people deal with no food, electric, comfort every fucking day. You are bitching because you've had to endure an interminable 2 God damn days of the same. Poor fucking baby.

For some reason I question whether you and your ilk are in any position to be a members of the team to lead the world.

My family went camping. It rained the whole weekend. No customary comforts. We played Yahtzee and card games in a tent and had a ball.

Labels: , , ,

Life could imitate sport

In a sense, the New Orleans Saints Super Bowl XLIV victory was closer than the 31-17 score would indicate.

For most of the game, Colts quarterback marched the down the field virtually at will. Colts running backs gashed the Saints repeatedly for large games. And until 3:12 left in the fourth quarter, the first overtime game in Super Bowl history seemed a distinct possibility.

But in all the most important ways, the game was a blowout. At virtually every key moment, the Saints outplayed and outcoached the Colts, and for that the Saints own a Super Bowl, a piece of history, and no small amount of joy for New Orleans.

Football is always a game of accumulated moments, but this Super Bowl in particular resolved itself into a collage of three plays and decisions that decided the title.


In Super Bowl XLIV, fortune favored the bold.

My guess is the really big game in Washington D.C. will also go to the bold. Sure hasn't happened yet.
Note: Headline links to source.



I admit I'm not some geography whiz. Whiz? I can't even tell you where chad is. But what's up with this story?
IQALUIT, Nunavut, Feb. 7 (UPI) -- The finance ministers of the Group of Seven met Saturday in an unusual venue, Iqaluit on Baffin Island, capital of the territory of Nunavut.
Oh, the story? Who gives a shit. I'm all about the damn location.

You regular readers should know by now to never trust me. The map above fucks you. The location of this meeting was in the Arctic which isn't even on the map.


Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , ,

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Taliban dig in for big assault, say Afghan villagers

Hey, this shit is looking better than the Super Bowl. Is it too late to get some fucking tickets? We'll have a tailgate party outside town and then hunker down for some macho kick ass fighting.


Football people speak in military jargon all the time. Attack! Kill! Assault! Enemy! No prisoners! You probably know most of the rest.

But this is the real shit. Real combat with real killing and something the NFL doesn't have... things exploding. Fireworks? We'll give you fireworks up the ass until you can't hobble to work on Monday.

Taliban militants are massing and preparing for a big fight ahead of a major NATO offensive in an insurgent stronghold in southern Afghanistan, villagers fleeing the area said on Sunday.

U.S. Marines are set to launch a massive operation within days to take Marjah, a dense warren of canals and lush farmland in the centre of Helmand, the country's most violent province.

Military commanders are dubbing the area the last big Taliban enclave in the province. The offensive, one of the biggest of the eight-year-old war, will mark the first major show of force since U.S. President Barack Obama ordered in 30,000 extra troops.

Washington hopes the Marine operation will help decisively turn the momentum this year in a war that commanders accept has not been going their way. They have also not kept the planned offensive a secret, hoping the militants will give up the fight.

"It has to do with letting people know what's coming in the hope that the hardcore Taliban, or a lot of the Taliban, will simply leave, and maybe there will be less of a fight," U.S. Defence Secretary Robert Gates said in Turkey on Saturday.

According to some of the villagers escaping Marjah in fear of their lives, fighters are digging in rather than fleeing.

Two questions: Will there be cheerleaders? Will they have on undies?

I always find dark humor preferable to unmanly crying or actually cheering for death and destruction.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , , , ,

Iran's police vow no tolerance towards protesters

Iranian police

Or you could put it a little differently:
You protest, we shoot.

Note: Headline links to source.

Tancredo wants a civics test for voters

Eli at Firedog lake has proposed 20 questions for Tancredo's civics literacy test required before people can vote.

However, I believe Tancredo would prefer only a couple questions:

White people: Do you live in the United States? (hint: answer is not "no")

All other people: How many people signed the United States Bill of Rights? Name all of them.

Note: Headline links to source.

Labels: , , ,

Do not get sick and avoid accidents

NHS = National Health Service (UK)

Universal health care is so important in England its a campaign issue worth stressing. It used to be one in the US too.

Yeah I know the heading is the fucking Repugs idea of health care but its the best option out there right now. Don't require medical attention.

I'm for pushing the single payer plan. It won't be easy and will leave scars, but its what Americans need and want. It's something Americans will realize they couldn't live without. People are dying out there.

Go to an emergency room and look around for a while (I have). Talk to someone in a grocery store who's buying food with food stamps and ask them how they like their health care plan and they'll tell you they have none (I've done this too).

I have medicare, but its a useless plastic card which covers hospital costs only and isn't valid at all where I live. True US universal health care won't affect me, but it will affect millions of Americans. Is it socialism? It sure as hell is, but its good socialism; the kind that cares for people.

Obama is poised to becoming a one term President. His legacy should be to provide universal health care no matter what it takes. He should play ruthless hardball and force Congress to send him a bill he promised and the American public has been waiting for. He doesn't need big pharma and insurance companys' money for re-election because, at this point, re-election isn't a viable possibility.

Will the Senate filibuster? They will. Let 'em. Let them completely shut down Congress. Can they do it for 3 years? I doubt it and no new laws may be a God damn blessing anyway.

Labels: , , , , ,