What you don’t know is that they don’t know

March 31, 2009

Geithner and Obama and Bernanke are guessing.

Perhaps their guesses are more educated than yours. Likely not. And here’s why.

However you stand on how morality should be derived, one of the most important functions of morality is to give you rules of thumb for dealing with complex situations where the long-term outcomes are in doubt. Meaning, most important situations that rational adults must deal with.

Honesty is the best policy. Work more than you’re paid for if you want to get ahead. Don’t shit where you eat. Spend less than you earn, and don’t associate with those who don’t. There are some basic moral principles that the Obama administration honors only in the breach.

The Obama administration is overflowing (like the filthiest toilet in Scotland) with moral midgets. That’s why they’re going to fail and smarts won’t help. Morals reach beyond smartness. Morals are needed because nobody’s smart enough to predict the future and to know what will actually work.

Here’s what the Obamabots are selling: If you don’t do what we say, something really bad will happen. Trust us. We’re being transparent, when if we get around to it. It didn’t work last time but it will this time. If you don’t save those who don’t deserve it, you’ll go down with our ship.

That’s used car salesman speak. Late night infomercial crap.

They haven’t a clue. And nothing they are saying resonates morally. They don’t just spit on Horatio Alger–they’re trying to rape every one of his boys.

Smart adults with no moral bearings….isn’t how we got into this mess?

Do not believe that because these guys have high IQs that they have significant advantage about predicting the future and dealing with the economy. Were that true, we wouldn’t be in this mess would we?

Have the moral courage and objectivity and real self-esteem to look at that horrible little troll Geithner and say, yeah, I am better than him in every way that counts. Including predicting what we need to do to get out of this mess.

Morally speaking, we need to let those who were insanely greedy and stupid reap the whirlwind. And if they manage to harm the rest of us by doing so, the rest of us need to suck it up for not being smart enough to protect ourselves. We’ll take our lumps because that’s what we do, us people who aren’t like Geithner and who aren’t like our neighbors who took out second mortgages to buy frost king refrigerators and 60″ TVs.

But if we don’t fight back now, we will be raped, and there will be no lube.


Brothers in Arms

March 29, 2009

In my younger days, I was an atheist. I agitated for drug legalization. I despised Christianity as a lie and a drag on progress.

I’m no different now about these things than I was then. I’m still an atheist in favor of drug legalization who wishes people would stop going to church.

Except I get along much better these days with Christians who’ve never smoked dope  than with dope-smokers who’ve never gone to church. I much prefer Glenn Beck to Rachel Maddow. I’d rather watch O’Reilly than Olbermann. I voted for Bush instead of whoever the hell the Libertarian Party ran. In this last election, I voted for Palin–not McCain/Palin, but Palin. I wrote her in.

In my younger days, I lived at the end of history. Controversial issues were entirely internecine. You can afford to be whatever you want to be, politically, when all you’re fighting about is welfare vs workfare, or whether you have to buy dope from friends or from stores and which states sell dildoes.

Well, we’re no longer at the end of history. Seems history is getting ramped up to kick our complacent asses again.  So it’s no longer about who likes drugs and porn, as about who agrees with you about preserving the civilization that makes drugs and porn–and religious freedom– cheap and available. It’s about protecting a wonderful civilization that lets us vigorously disagree and fight with each other while seldom resorting to violence. Unlike Islam. Unlike Europe. America is special and people who don’t think so are provincial idiots.

(One of my dear friends was slightly in her cups a few months ago, and went off about how America was just “so horrible in the world.” In just the same tones that I would have expected her to use had Uncle Sam raped her at every Thanksgiving dinner since she was 7. I just don’t get this. Maybe all of these people do have an Uncle named Sam.)

I have way more in common, when it comes to fundamentals, no pun intended, with my Christian, conservative adversaries than with my tolerant liberal friends.

The conservatives are into hard work, self-sufficiency, distrust of government, the shame of taking handouts, and, most importantly, the importance of defending our way of life against a diverse lot of lowlifes and barbarians.

Most of my liberal friends are dumb as a box of rocks about what their freedom to shop at Whole Foods depends on. They’re like the Eloi. Talk about guns makes them go Ick! and Poo! They really don’t believe that self-defense is relevant to their lives. The never expect a Bad Man to ever try to hurt them (unless his name is Sam and he’s a Republican).

Eloi are nice, but you wouldn’t want them guarding your back.

Game Over, Man, Game Over!

March 28, 2009

The Democrats have taken off and are about to nuke the site from orbit.

I posted several days ago about how people who don’t have a sense of scarcity remain morally vacuous. When all things are possible and cost is no barrier, it’s impossible to set priorities and weigh issues.

I realize now that to understand scarcity, you need to understand some math. How many people have you heard complain that all their math classes were useless? I’ve always thought such people were idiots. Now I’m sure.

If you can’t balance a checkbook or read a balance sheet, if you think the most boring thing in the world is accounting, if you don’t know what the Dow is at today within 30,000 points, if you’ve never made a budget and tracked expenses, you might be a complete jackass. If this shoe fits your hoof, go out right now and learn about or start doing all of those things. It will make you a much more responsible, decent human being.

Clearly, the Democrats (and most of the Republicans) don’t get scarcity and don’t get math. For decades, gloomy fiscal conservatives have been warning about social security going bankrupt and making other “if this goes on…” dire predictions. Everyone admits they’re right, more or less. We just say, well, this won’t go on, or we’ll think of something, or something will change or it’s so far away, what, me worry?

So most people are yawning still at the dire predictions about what’s going to happen if we keep spending trillions to bail out billionaires and if Obama’s grand social plans get passed through Congress like shit through a goose. Most people think economic and social implosion is an impending problem, but still somewhat down the road.

A lot of people can’t even tell you how many billions are in a trillion. They have no idea how much the American economy produces in a year. Vaguely, they might know what the national debt is, but that’s only because they vacantly remember a news story a while back about having to take off the dollar sign to allow another order of magnitude on that big debt sign in New York or wherever the hell it is. Actually, these people think an order of magnitude is like, a felony warrant, or something.

I’m not going to tell you how big the annual American GDP is or how much the debt is or even what Obama’s proposed budget deficit is. but I suggest you go check out what all these numbers were a decade ago and then bar chart them and think about the implication of how much closer each of these bars are in height to each other than they were then. Use the CBO’s numbers or the BS numbers that Obama is handing out: Bar chart-wise, it doesn’t look all that much different.

This week, the Brits had a government bond auction, and nobody came. This means the Brits are foobar-ed, to use a technical term.

What does it mean when a government can’t borrow any more from objective investors? It means that the objective investors think that government is going to go bankrupt if they loan it any more. It’s the final warning to that government to knock it off or else. If that government doesn’t listen, the next step for investors is to dump all their investments at fire sale prices as fast as possible. Big deal, says the irresponsible government. You aren’t buying my debt anymore anyway, so screw all of you.

Except that it’s not just foreign skeptics who are stuck with that debt, but every citizen in that country whose wallet has bills in it. That debt is denominated in currency–pounds or dollars or whatever Zimbabwean money is called. At this point, it’s all the same. I’m going to start a trend and start calling dollars Zimmies.

Irresponsible governments who won’t listen to reason don’t actually go bankrupt–unless someone sends an army across their borders.

Instead, they “monetize the debt.” They print more notes and hand them out to creditors and say, Here, I just paid you, shutup. But… every citizen of that country is also a creditor. Their wallets get hoovered too along with the investors. The citizens didn’t realize they were investors.

China is seriously warning the USA right now. Go, China!

They’re telling us, outright, to knock it off. They’re threatening to not buy any more of our debt. They’re alerting the world to the notion that the dollar might not still be the currency of last resort.

We have promised the rest of the world that we wouldn’t monetize our way out of our problems. But we just broke that promise, to the tune of the Fed buying a trillion dollars of our own debt to avoid our own most recent auction looking as pathetic as Britain’s. This is just like paying one credit card bill with a cash advance on another. Oh, and all you math-contemptuous jocks and cheerleaders: they distracted you from this with a dog-and-pony show over $165 million paid to a bunch of Connecticut Yuppies, confident that you don’t get orders of magnitude and don’t know the difference between a million or a billion or a trillion.  But you do know that you hate Yuppies, for reasons that reflect better on the Yuppies than on you.

Either the Obama administration must be checked hard, by us, or we will be checked hard by the rest of the world. Not in 20 years. Not in 5 years. It will happen this year.

Unfortunately, Obama is one of those people who doesn’t get the scarcity thing. And Tim Geithner is just a weird moron. It’s like watching Frodo be led to Mordor by Gollum. Frodo’s kind of a wuss, but a good guy, and we hope he’ll stumble onto something. Me, I just want to see Geithner burn in lava.

Frodo Obama and Gollum Geithner are paying no more attention to the warnings of the world than a 3 year old reaching for a toy in a grocery store when mom starts counting to 10. Obama and Geithner won’t back off at 9 because Obama doesn’t get math and Geithner is obsessed with his Precious.

The excrement is about to hit the fan, with incredible velocity. Think of it this way, you math-impaired types:

You go along for months and months not paying your bills, ignoring your creditors’ phone calls, credit card debt going up and up. Then, finally, you decide the only way out is to bet on a get-rich-quick scheme that will require you to max out the rest of your credit cards, and even float a few bad checks. If you can just hold it together a little longer, everyone will get paid and you’ll be rich…

But once you raise your profile and your current creditors see what you’re doing, they know that you’re desperate, and desperation doesn’t usually work, and you’re just digging in so deep that there’s no chance they’ll ever get paid unless you really do pull a giant rabbit out of your butt.

So they start scrambling to get first in line to get paid or to cut their losses and suddenly your bank isn’t just sending letters and calling you but starting foreclosure, and the repo man takes your BMW and all your credt card account get shut down at once. It all happens in a week or two. When it all starts to collapse, it’s shocking how fast it goes.

This is where the US government is right now. That poor dumb schmuck Obama used the “you can’t turn an aircraft carrier on a dime” metaphor this week to encourage you to be patient. Wrong metaphor: it’s not how fast does an aircraft carrier turn, but how fast does it sink when shot full of big holes?

UPDATE 2019-02-07: I was totally wrong about this. Well, I was right about this nonsense being unsustainable, but totally wrong about the timeframe of the collapse.

Gangbanging the school teacher

March 24, 2009

My sister-in-law, a very nice person, is studying to be a school teacher. She showed up late at a party where me and my like-minded friends had been drinking, pontificating and sorting the world into buckets (those who should be killed, those who must be killed and those must must be forced to kill those who should be killed).

Actually, we were talking about how all parents of schoolchildren had been dragged into a meeting where the school board told them to pick which programs were to be killed because of budget problems. These trogs who run most school boards and condo associations think that Sophie’s Choice is an inspiring way to motivate people. But that’s for another post.

40% of the budget being spent was on 118 “special needs” kids and was sacrosanct. I don’t know how many kids are in this school district–it’s suburban Seattle, so 50,000 is probably a low guess.

Another thing off the table was bussing kids who lived a mile away from the school, another 20% of the total budget. What was left in the “discretionary” budget?

AP was on the chopping block, so were all sports. Anything that normal, average, talented, or most people care about was on the get-shot-in-the-head list.

Until my SIL showed up, we were just gently wondering if perhaps the mission of the public schools had become a little skewed toward the needs of the fat and stupid. Ok, actually, I think we were guffawing about they should suffocate the stupid by having the fat sit on them and then we could spend all that money on the ultimate  trip to Vegas.

She sat down in the middle of our conversation and in about 15 seconds said, “Oh, maybe I should go over there.” She was right. She should have gone over there. Instead she tried to de-Neanderthalize us en passant on her way to “over there.”

She started using terms like “vulnerable communities” and “heterogeneous somethingorothers” and telling us about how most special needs kids couldn’t even get on the short bus without somebody having to turn them over to keep them from getting bedsores.

So we slaughtered her. I started it. I’m not proud of it, but it had to be done.

She was OFFENDED that anyone would disagree with her.  She was absolutely sure that she was right. Because she’s learning how to be compassionately and meaninglessly multisyllabic in her community college classes taught by people as dumb as my 5th grade teachers.

The crap they teach these kids who want to teach our kids.

Last year, she was bitching about having to do group projects and getting punked by all the lazy 19 year olds in her group, because they left her to do everything. This year, it’s “vulnerable communities.”

In the ’60’s they’d have called this being coopted or selling out.

Self-contempt masquerading as Other-contempt

March 22, 2009

Just watched the original Planet of the Apes on Comcast HD. (It looks great and sounds decent, by the way).

I loved the dated hippie-liberal-cynical take on American culture. Man, they thought they were really saying something with this movie. Getting in their digs at racism and Christian orthodoxy and how screwed-up-in-general Western civilization is.

Of course, this movie came out a few years before feminism got put on the list of dorky ideological cliches that Shall Not Be Questioned, and so Charlton Heston spent most of the movie trying to keep the apes from taking away his right to party on this hot devolved human chick with the brain of a cocker-spaniel.

For the ’60’s this is big budget Deep stuff. The ape masks were state of the art (I think they got an Academy Award). And the movie is chock full of naive loathing of everything we are and that the producers think they’re not.

Heston, in the movie, is a cynical obnoxious jerk, whose primary reason for surviving against all odds is to get into the pants of a hot devolved chick who’s as smart as a cocker spaniel (I might have mentioned that before, but it’s so central to the plot that it needs to be mentioned again). By ’60’s pseudo-intellectual standards, Heston is world weary and wise and his constant annoying pretentious lectures to his fellow stranded astronauts as they trudge through the desert in search of water are foreboding and prophetic and portentious. Personally, If I’d been that tired, scared, cranky and thirsty, I’d have clocked him in the back of the head with a rock, and trudged on in blessed silence.

Heston, disgusted by the loveless farce of the The Dick Van Dyke Show and everything else about ’60’s America that was plastic and horrible, trained to be an astronaut just so he could get to relativistic speeds that would ensure that Mary Tyler Moore would be dead and unable to doppler off her last, “Rooooobbbbbbb….” in time to reach him. What a hell he was running from.

At the end of the movie, Heston realizes he’s not on some distant planet where apes evolved instead of man, but on earth, and there’s been nuclear holocaust, and somehow that made apes smart, and the Statue of Liberty was blown all the way from New York into the desert southwest, and thank god it landed rightside up, or he wouldn’ have been able to so dramatically vent his If-you’d-all-only-listened-to-me rage against the machine.

Planet of the Apes is really cool. The pretentious subtext just makes it better. Like Reefer Madness, but unlike RM, you still know people who think this kind of thing is Deep.

All you punks who profit from and are protected by Western civilization and feel nothing but contempt for it are spoiled teenagers. That douche who did the Nixon movie and Platoon–his name escapes me at the moment–he’s just Planet of the Apes with better special effects. Oh, Oliver Stone. Still spouting his weird conspiracy theories, still not a clue how the world works, still resentful and still living, in his own mind, in his parents’ basement, even if it’s now a mansion in Malibu.

Like all bratty teenagers, who know deep down they can’t survive without mom and dad, you are hostile dependent and arrogant and you think you’re the smartest people on the planet.

Your parents, unfortunately, were wimps. So that’s what you are now. You’re just like your parents, except less productive and sane.

Rush and Laura

March 19, 2009

Rush Limbaugh has spent the last couple of days carving up Barack Obama about Teleprompter-gate. This is because at a St. Patrick’s Day party, the guy who was supposed to load the teleprompter mixed up Barack’s speech with the Irish prime minister’s. In the end, Barack ended up reading the PM’s speech including thanking Barack Obama his own self for throwing a bitchin’ STP party.

Rush thinks this proves that Obama just reads what he’s given and has no comprehension of what he’s doing as he’s parrotting what goes across the teleprompter.

Supposedly there’s no videotape, so it’s he said she said. Other people who were there say Barack was having a fine time, riffing off the teleprompter screwup, perhaps fueled by a green beer or two, deliberately reading the wrong speech.

If you’ve read this blog, you know I’m no Obama fanboy. But you have to be a partisan jackass not to bet that Obama was having fun with it. He may not be qualified, but he’s quick.

Rush is being a douche-nozzzle about this. I think he knows that he screwed up and he can’t admit it. When he first got the story, he thought he had Barack doing something Bush-dumb. Then, it turns out Barack is being funny.

But Rush won’t shut up, trying to defend his mistake. I had to turn him off this morning. It was like when one of your kids just keeps digging their own grave. You send them to their room just to make them shut up.

Now comes Laura Ingraham, ridiculously defending herself about calling John McCain’s daughter fat.

Laura is even more asinine than Rush. On her radio program, she was lampooning La McCain’s appearance on The View and made a “plus size” dig at her, while imitating her in a Valley Girl accent. Something like, “and I’m so annoyed that plus size models can’t something or other.”

It was reasonably funny, at least Last Comic Standing first round-worthy.

Since then, Laura’s been pontificating about how she didn’t say McCain’s daughter was fat, but was instead contrasting her with too-skinny models and making deep social commentary and other nonsense that I can’t even remember it’s so boring and dumb.

Point is, Laura Ingraham should either apologize for calling McCain’s daughter fat or say, If you can’t take a joke then fuck you.

Instead she gets horribly angry at anyone who calls her on her obvious prevarications. Everyone in the world gets this except Laura.

I’ll bet Laura knows Rush is FOS on the teleprompter and that Rush knows Laura is FOS on the fat joke. Maybe they should call each other and help each other.

Maybe Ann Coulter can mediate if they can’t muster enough self-awareness on their own.

Boning Your Bonus

March 19, 2009

So this is what The Congress-critters come up with? We’ll tax excellence at 90% from now on to punish….what?

Nobody’s really sure that the AIG people getting those bonuses didn’t earn them. We don’t know who they are. We don’t know how much they got in salary (could have been small salaries, with most of their compensation based on bonuses).

Given what we know, this could be just like cutting the pay of assembly line workers because Pintos blew up. Or these bonus-getters could all be horrible people. My point is NOBODY KNOWS RIGHT NOW AND THAT’S WHATS WRONG ABOUT LYNCHING. Here’s how you tell if they deserve it or not: How much will it cost if they quit?

Why doesn’t Barney Wank give back his salary? Why doesn’t he work for $1 a year for the rest of his worthless pandering life? Why doesn’t he take the Grassley Challenge? Why doesn’t he resign as the disgrace that he is? Why won’t he apologize for playing tight end for Fannie and Freddie?

I’d cast him as Marie Antoinette, plus-size. Hope things turn out as good for him too.

Why hasn’t Chris Dodd been tarred and feathered and run out of town on a rail yet? Probably because of too much estrogen in the water.

How stupid are you if you’re at 10 on the outrage meter about the bonuses and at 5 about the bailouts? How stupid do you think they think you are?

If you’re more annoyed at AIG than at Barney and Chrissie and Timmy and Benny and Hankie and Harry and Nancy, then you’re pretty stupid.