Friday, September 27, 2013

Friday Pussy - Herding cats and other fun hobbies edition

(Don't google that unless you're planning on a career in gynecology)

As if life wasn't complicated enough we have bozos in congress trying to play chicken with our lives. Think we've seen two year olds with more smarts.  Where to begin?

Like a Mexican standoff both parties are standing firm on the budget debate. We can only hope that cooler heads prevail but haven't seen the iceman since grandma told me about him when she was alive.

Global warming (or is it climate change?) "might" be man-made. Ya think!? Wouldn't have anything to do with the fact that the planet went from 4 billion to 7 billion in just the last 30 years would it? And the wing nuts want more company as they make abortion and contraception nearly illegal. Scratch that nearly part. That'll do wonders for bottom line. They must have stock in baby formula and diaper companies.

Fear not there'll be more pressing problems coming fellow tree huggers. Let me see there's the swirling masses of garbage in both major oceans to think about and let us not forget it may soon turn radioactive in the Pacific if somebody can't figure out how to plug the leaking nuke plant in Fukushima. Yeah we're Fuked alright.

Ah but there are more pressing problems to consider like how can Miley Cyrus out do herself after swinging naked from a wrecking ball? Guess it's what you have to do when you have no talent. I'm no prude but what's next sex with sheep? Well baa ram ewe baby. 

You got to love the freedom of the net being able to comment as you please (the onion has nothing on this guy) but take heed the powers that be would love nothing better than to shut you up. Net Neutrality and all, yeah right. Very quietly and in the background they are shutting down the beginnings of a new media. People sick of the lame stream media are taking up the cause of getting out the truth and it looks like we're getting under their skin. I don't speak of some tin foil hat blogger sitting in his basement cooking up the latest disjointed conspiracy theory, we're talking about educated average folks who know they're being played by corporate media when they flip on the six o'clock news.

Don't forget to take a solar umbrella I hear the sun is shooting it's load these days. Nothing to fear here as it's been overcast for much of the week. I'd consider fishing but I don't know how much a geiger counter costs. A soon to be necessity around here. Maybe that will turn out in the long run to be a good thing. Get your omega 3s and cure cancer at the same time, who knows?

Lastly we have consumers buying crap again or so they say. I don't buy it (pun intended). I've only seen a couple of new cars on the road of late while those in the neighborhood sit and rust. Banks must be doing well. The one down the street just installed four mega flat screen advertising monitors right after they laid off nearly all the tellers. Hope they provided those that remained with lead underwear because these things are huge.

On that note we have bank fails later...
UPDATE: No bank fails this week so keep shopping.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Random rants for a rainy day

Hump day bump day one day is good as the next. All the same you see. How bad? Nobody really knows. Afghanistan banana stand no bananas today got blown up in the drone hit what's the score today? Six of this half dozen of the other but fear not nobody's keeping score. Keep the stupid news rolling for stupid people. Hey didn't I see you on dancing with the stars? Perhaps not, too busy fighting while in line for the latest and greatest electronic gizmo that's soon to be obsolete in a week or two when they roll out version 2.0. Now comes in platinum! Not falling for their tricks and sure wouldn't wait in line unless it's the grocery store. No options there.

Get back to the grind you slacker! Oops forgot it was sold to the multinational venture capital. Now how can noses be flattened? Worked your butt off did you? You were probably obese anyway now pass the twinkies and hand over the remote somebody said there's a cage match with Oprah and Dr. Phil. Don't tell me there's nothing to do Capt. Kangaroo. Dig up the bones of Michael Jackson and call my lawyer there must be somebody left to sue.

To market to market to buy a fat pig. The speculators beat you to it now it's part of a derivatives contract leveraged all over Asia. The pig died but the paper lives on. That is until the investors catch on. Got a bridge for ya real cheap or perhaps the Eiffel tower would make good scrap metal the choice is yours. 

Slackers unite! Sit back and enjoy the grillings and scourings and scramblings. They scramble to scour then grill the nair do well. Fear not he only gets a fine in the end, a mere slap on the wrist whilst the real criminals are hoisted from the nearest yard arm. That'll teach em not to steal a loaf of bread. Going to steal something then steal the whole bakery, you get a cushy bonus and a plush retirement plan. Haven't we been down this road once before? Bucket shops now replaced with derivative traders it's all the same. Now shut up turn off the car ads and go shopping. Oh I forgot there's not much left in the old bank account and they cancelled your credit cards, so never mind.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

What this world needs is an enema

Bombs in Syria bombs in Iraq bombs in Pakistan it's enough to make you want to crawl back under the covers. If guns are said to be so great and the good guys are supposed to protect us from the bad guys then how come they're not? And people seem to have this idea that more guns will make everything better. No Sparky more just makes everything more dangerous. Do you really think you could out draw an intruder when they busted in with theirs already drawn? You couldn't get to the night stand fast enough and by the time you got the safety off he'd fill you full of lead. 

But with today's society stupidity and ignorance rains supreme. Forget the quest for honesty that's been cast out like left over pizza crusts. Rudeness rules the day or didn't you know that you jerk?! No holding back of snide comments or outright insults. But just try and hold someone's feet to the fire for buffoonish behavior and expect a tirade of yet more insults. Don't you dare call me stupid you moron. So I guess we've devolved to the point where if you can't shoot somebody then a verbal raping is the next best substitute. Where did mom go wrong? The stress level is near off the meter and it's only out of sheer necessity that anyone goes out at all especially not at night. You could get shot for just saying hello. Although with a kung fu rapier wit one can get by or at least disarm a situation long enough for a hasty retreat.

Have we moved to a "Clockwork Orange" world where we need to scurry about gathering food with a quick retreat back to our lares? A peek out the drawn curtains to see if the coast is clear? So if you see me coming don't shoot I'm unarmed but I guess that little detail doesn't matter anymore. Okay then one final request of a peaceful candle light vigil or maybe better yet a raucous drunken wake would be more in order. Always wanted to go out with a bang. So fitting for the times.     

Now get off my lawn!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Friday beaver and the "stupid party" Part II

Is it Friday already? And this will be the last fuzzy wet beaver for the season but fear not the pussies are coming.

The carnage on middle and lower class people continues with the House passing the food stamp bill. Fortunately this bill must pass the senate before it gets to the presidents' desk. The "stupid party" doesn't have as much influence there but we've seen some pretty stupid legislation come out of there. We did see the student loan bill emerge from its' bowels  that barely gave young people a fighting chance and god help you if you were after a post graduate degree.

And now we have a Chicago style gun down in a park in where else? Chicago. After DC shootings and Sandy Hook should we be surprised? LaPierres' answer to the problem is more guns. His thinking is if good guys had more guns we wouldn't have this problem. He seems to forget that many gun deaths in this country are the result of accidents and people doing away with a pesky relative or family member. So his stats are a bit wrong and with the stress this country is under we're likely to see more of the same. But that won't stop the whore for the NRA and gun manufacturers from spouting his nonsense. You'd think that the market for guns would be at saturation point with more guns than people in this country but you'd be wrong. I see little need for such items in todays' modern society. Let's face it there aren't wild bears roaming most neighborhoods, indians aren't circling the wagons and there won't be a russian invasion any time soon. But the wing nuts of the extreme right won't let facts get in the way of their armageddon wet dream where their fighting off liberal russian commie bears and their indian and black friends. Throw in a few zombies and vampires and it'll be the next hollywood blockbuster.

What should we really be afraid of as the clock ticks on? We should fear ignorance illness and more wars for these are the things that bring down entire societies. We are at an imbalance never seen before with entire nations being crushed under debt. The game can not continue but don't let that stop the stupid party from spewing their opinions. If you told them it was day they'd say it was night. They never let facts stand in their way. So it's just a matter of waiting for their followers to wake up and realize how played they were and that the party they stood by is giving them the shaft without so much as a thank you.

Okay enough rambling 
Bank fails later....
UPDATE No bank fails this week 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Stupid party Part I

The "stupid" party is at it again once more trying to rid us of having health care. So my question to you senator or congressman idiot is why should we pay for your health care when you won't  even help pay for ours? Spreading risk is what insurance does to lower costs. When everybody pays a little bit into a system it's a benefit to all. It's why we don't have dirt roads instead of paved highways although they are starting to fall apart because your party doesn't want them repaired. In fact looking back the last 30 or 40 years it was your party that has been the downfall of this country because you have voted in lock step to defund nearly everything good about this country. Pick any area and you'll see it was the "stupid party" that made cuts to everything from education to health care. 

Greed they said was a good thing quoting the movie "Wall Street". No senator greed has not been a good thing. It's why our bridges are falling down. It's why we have no affordable health care. It's why our educational system is becoming the worst in the world and unaffordable. Who after all would want to start out with the equivalent of two mortgages? You were fortunate enough to receive an education when it was subsidized with state and federal monies only to turn around and cut that funding. You then have the nerve to tell us it's our fault that we can't afford it.

Why we even pay your salaries is a puzzlement. You have done nothing the last many years. Being against something is all well and good if you have an idea to replace it but you are devoid of ideas. When the fools that follow you realize that you'd steal their pensions and sell their grandmothers all so you can make another dollar for your corporate backers it will be the end for your little game and that's what it seems to be for you, just a game. You produce nothing of benefit for the nation as a whole. And if you worked like that for any other employer you'd be fired. Why we put up with a party that's sexist and racist and does little to nothing is beyond comprehension. Come on think about one republican bill that's made it through congress since 2008. Why? Because there aren't any. Nothing nada not one idea other than being against everything. 

So maybe we should let you have you way and shut everything down. I could just see your corporate backers howling when their profits came screeching to a halt. No funding means only the required programs continue and that means all of the goodies to your buddies while Obamacare would continue. Nothing like shooting yourself in the foot that is after you take it out of your mouth, but fear not I think Obamacare covers that.   

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Just a thought

Wonder if the DC shooter was upset that his pay didn't arrive on time? Seems 40,000 federal workers who had direct deposit weren't paid on Friday due to a computer glitch. Either that or one of his friends didn't get paid. At any rate it's a given that he had paranoid feelings against his coworkers. I've seen that develop in the workplace before. A worker thinking that people are plotting against them. 

Now a little background on security and the checks involved. All require reporting of any felony convictions. But it depends on the degree of sensitivity and the area of access. For some government buildings you can't have so much as an outstanding parking ticket and expect access. I know because I've worked at most facilities here. The problem is that much of government work is contracted. Many in the trades do have criminal records but that doesn't necessarily disqualify them. If it did we'd have a hard time getting anyone to get many of the construction jobs completed.

Last I checked firing a weapon in city limits is a finable offense. The number of police reports on out of control people would surprise you, so common now that many aren't even reported. Hearing voices in your head is a mental issue not a police matter and that's they way they look at it. Unless he was armed and threatening at the time the police would just leave. 

Two other points in this case are that the shooter had already received security clearance. Once in the system an individual can have access to where ever they are permitted. And finally with the cut backs and everyone wanting to save money background checks are now outsourced to other contractors. 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Friday Beaver soon to be the last for this season Fear not the pussies are coming

So much news it's almost overload

Where to begin? The irony meter blasts the scale with this on. Seems the blood suckers of Wall Street don't like it when things happen to them. Goldman Sachs employees in Switzerland have complained to the government about not being paid for overtime. What you didn't make enough selling off grandma's mortgage in the derivative bundle to make an even bigger bundle? Oh forgot you do that with entire countries now, pity you.

Totally under reported or non reported for that matter is the fact that every teacher in Mexico is now on strike. Tis true there's a rather large gathering in Mexico city so large the they shut down major highways but not by intent. It's just that so many came all at once. Reason? President and congress just passed a bill requiring all teachers to pass a standardized test in spanish or lose their license. Sounds good on the surface until you realize that there are over 300 different languages spoken in the country and so many of those areas are so remote they have little access even to learn spanish. In other news of that land they want to privatize the national oil company the country's primary source of revenue.

Other little snippets not getting reported was a protester killed in Turkey three days ago which caused more riots in the streets in Ankara. Noting to be seen of protests in Bulgaria or Slovenia so I guess they just don't count.

While we've heard much about tar sands oil spills of late in Mayflower and the train explosion in Lac Magantic (just who switched labels on the train at the border?) no reports from the Dominican Republic about what a certain Canadian gold mining company is doing to their environment. After polluting their streams beyond usability the company was so kind enough to provide water to the near by villages, a whopping 40 gallons per week for entire families to drink bath and wash their clothes. Much like saying "here's a quarter kid don't spend it all in one place". This scene by the way is being played out in so many countries as corporations use their grasp on governments to change laws to their favor. Harper in Canada is sending in his cronies to the western provinces to convince First Nation chiefs to cough up their land so he can ship more dirty tar sands oil to China. Forget about the environment and what long term damage it will do and don't believe all the hype about creating local jobs, most big outfits import their own cheap labor under special laws that lock out the locals. And as efficient as construction has become the whole thing could be built in 12 to 18 months. Once built it doesn't take an army of workers to run it either. They must think we've forgotten that systems are computerized and only need a handful of people to maintain.

The same is playing out in so many countries now it's hard to keep track. There's fracking just about everywhere now, that is if the land isn't being dug up to find gold. Coal seems to be taking a back seat for the moment but as the price of natural gas drops you can bet all but the biggest players will drop out and coal will be king once more. Poor West Virginia may land up as flat as the prairies with all the hill top mining and Pennsylvania could look like swiss cheese with all the gas drilling. You realize of course all of this is not good for the environment. They realized this way back when Pittsburgh was called "the smokey city" and finally decided to clean up the air. Now it's an assault on water and soil all driven by a quest for more profits. One thing to remember here is corporations could give a tinkers' damn about human life. They are in business for one reason and one reason only and that's to make money.

On that note bank fails later...  
UPDATE: Two banks failed this week. One in Texas and on in CT.   

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Look! Not over here over there!

Digging through the fluff of U.S. main stream media past the latest diva temper tantrum or cute kitty playing the piano we search for real news that actually effects our lives. Buried deep in the far recesses you might find the truth, but it takes a big shovel and plenty of elbow grease.

While the primary focus has been an impending war with Syria, yes let's face it once the first missiles are fired it will be game on for the region, the economy sputters along producing little more than make work jobs that don't pay enough to cover the rent. Call me Henry Ford if building a hamburger can be considered a manufacturing job but it is. Where in this world the bullies of Wall Street and their partners in crime resort to line their pockets once again but by picking on the weakest. In the UK it's been by imposing a bedroom tax to those living in public housing as if they had much of a choice to their circumstances. How they're expected to downsize to avoid being thrown out on the street with draconian taxes is beyond belief, especially when there are no alternatives and no plans in the works to build smaller flats. In the U.S. it's been a freeze to public housing preventing those in line from even being considered. The lines have been so long in past years that it takes over a year to get a unit. While some advances were made prior to the melt down with duplexes being torn down and four and six-plexes built it did little to improve the situation with the poor being added. That would be those that lost good paying jobs and couldn't sell their homes with the mortgage melt down and that 's not to mention many losing much of their retirement income which was not FDIC insured.

Then we have the phony unemployment numbers. While they are reported as having gone down and seem to keep going down, it takes no genus to figure that something's awry when the jobs added and the claims filed don't quite jive especially when those who have fallen off unemployment when their claims ran out are no longer counted. I know of three such people in my neighborhood alone.

So what are our elected officials doing about all this? The senate has only now come back from it's long summer break but when they left it was mainly electing judges to the federal circuit courts a job that should have been done 4 years earlier.
On the House side it was business as usual with a bill to permit more foreign investment. Nothing like selling off the remains of our manufacturing to a foreign country. Do we still make anything other than planes or bombs? Then of course there's the favorite past time of the republicans getting rid of Obama care any way they can. Their latest ploy is to prevent the IRS from enacting any penalties by hand cuffing the secretary of the Treasury from enforcing the law. Further eroding the process was another amendment requiring stringent income verifications for anyone who may benefit from the program and receive a subsidy or co pay from the government. Once again proving that if they can't eliminate a program they'll make it extremely difficult to use much like what they've done to voting in many states.

Needless to say I have no use for republicans unless it's for a door stop or paper weight.       

Friday, September 6, 2013

Friday beaver - Insanity edition

(That is if there were any to be found)

While Assad has gassed his people and killed many more with rockets, Obama calls for the attack of Syria. But there's more. All the while U.S. drones kill six more in northern Pakistan. And while all this is going on Iran is calling for more bombings in Iraq of U.S. interests. Has the world really lost it's mind? Dead is dead no matter the method and pointing fingers when you are doing much the same is no answer.

In the UK companies are beginning to start fracking operations a dirty process of extracting gas a mile deep under the earths surface. This much to the objections of the local residents who have seen the damage it does to the water table. If that wasn't bad enough the offer for royalties was worse, a mere 1% of the rewards. That's 99 for me and one for you. The sheer greed of this is unthinkable. It's the town's mineral rights and the people aren't dumb enough to sell away their rights for a trinket or two. What's even worse is that most jobs will not go to the locals but some fly by night outfit from Texas who will hire migrant workers from some third world country at the lowest wages.

Yet again we're seeing the system cracking with workers not making enough to survive. Thailand rubber farmers not getting enough for their products. Coffee farmers in Columbia not making ends meet. Thirty years ago you could get a container of coffee for around $5. Granted the can was a bit larger back then. Today it can be had for $7.50 here so factoring for inflation farmers are making far less than they were back then. It's understandable that prices can never be frozen, Nixon tried that little trick back in the 70s, but it shouldn't take a genus to figure out that speculators should not be in the market. They have no interest in farmers or the consumers. 

Over all it's beginning to look like the sides are lining up and the future doesn't look too bright. Never mind what the wall street boys are saying they're on some type of cocaine high at the moment. They've raped enough countries to have a fat bank statement and all neatly hidden in the Caymans. And speaking of bank statements....

Bank fails later... 
UPDATE: No bank fails this week 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The perfect storm

The perfect storm is brewing and it appears October is the month to watch.

What gives? Many factors are about to converge all at once in that month. Where to begin? First up is the budget debate that must be addressed. We've seen the can kicked so many times there it's surprising that it looks like a can anymore. Tied to it is the debt ceiling. The minions in congress will huff and puff about shutting things down but we know they won't for to do so would be political suicide. Any wagers as to who's buying hedges against a large dip in the stock market?

Then of course there's Syria. And even if there's no air strike authorized there's still the drain on neighboring countries who are hosting 2 million refugees and climbing. With the economic strains on countries like Greece (which is selling off its' national assets), Spain, Italy, Ireland, Portugal all of which is now spilling into countries as far away as South America is it any wonder for such thinking? Then there's Japan with it's leaking nuclear plant quietly buried in the news. When they down play the extent and try to tell you that everything will be all right it's time to worry. Hanford and Chernobyl will look like child's play compared to this disaster. Hanford by the way has spent the last 25 years and tens of billions of dollars just trying to find a solution to the problem and they aren't there yet. So when Japan tells you it has the solution don't believe them.

There's a tipping point at which people will say enough is enough and I think we're getting close. Never before have fast food workers walked out on strike that I can recall. In other countries it's farmers in South America and miners in Africa on strike. But we've seen all this once before during the great depression when pickers weren't paid enough to even feed themselves.

And I forgot the 800 lb. gorilla in the room that nobody's talking about - from the G20 summit: An initiative will be presented to leaders on refining regulation of the $630-trillion global market for financial derivatives to prevent a possible markets blow-up. ("Refining regulations"! It's an unregulated market who are they kidding? )

So enjoy the rest of your day while we still have it. The sun will come out tomorrow and if it doesn't then it'll be just more rain and when it rains it pours. Who will stop the rain?