daily news

Tea Baggin': Pouring Fire on the Water

  • Posted on: 25 January 2010
  • By: rba

Well, well, well. After 40 years the Republicans have *finally* figured out a way to contain costs for mental health. Give all the hard-Right loonies a slogan and a few bumper stickers, and make them believe they are participants in a 'new beginning'.

They'll all willingly come out of the woodwork, making the job of keeping track of them simplicity itself. And the lithium-mist UAVs? Genius. Sheer genius.

With thanks for the inspiration to damn near every single news outlet in the United States, whose courage and foresight enabled a bunch of rich white ol' boys peddling last century's failed ideas to get these people the help they truly need.

Today's contributor: Kathleen Hennessey/LAT: Still a disorganized 'tea party'

Today's image: Louise Fletcher in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) &copy: Fantasy Films/The Nation

The Hissy-Fix

  • Posted on: 24 January 2010
  • By: rba


Image © Noah Berger/AP/San Francisco Chronicle

A parable: the Bay Bridge had been in need of maintenance and repair for decades, and after design-by-committee, millions of sniping letters, and thousands of hours of 'discussion' on talk radio, the various parties agreed to a final design. Great.

Now the trick has been keeping the existing structure maintained until the new span was complete. Not great. This past summer a piece of that deferred maintenance fell onto the deck of the bridge, which was a surprise to just about everyone, leaving no choice but to shut it down. Gasp!

Electing Brown (CA)

  • Posted on: 22 January 2010
  • By: rba


Image: Jerry Brown running for Governor 1974, © Jeff Robbins/AP/NYT

Yeah, the guy with more experience in more offices in government, and more insight than most, is (allegedly) back in the run for California Governor.

He's got my (alleged) vote.

Simple: do you want someone intimately familiar with all aspects of State Government, or some rich-as-Croesus political hack with far more cash than ability? You know, like the guy in the office right now.

Question just answers itself.

Slop

  • Posted on: 21 January 2010
  • By: rba


Image © NPR

Mitch McConnell sound bite on NPR (from memory):

The people of Massachusetts have spoken, and they don't want a government takeover of health care.

How in hell can *anyone* let that blatant lie slide? A simple factual refresher: nothing in either bill creates a 'government takeover' of health care. Nor are there provisions in the bill for any other sound-bitten-horror put forth by these pompous asses. And every single reporter worth their paycheck f*cking knows it.

Slippage every now and again is normal, but allowing the entire Republican party free rein to (literally) say anything is just plain bad reporting. If you can't spend the time to get it right, don't put it on air.

(Over) Crowded (Big) House

  • Posted on: 19 January 2010
  • By: rba


Image @ CDCR.ca.gov

David Savage/LAT:

Supreme Court puts on hold an order to release 40,000 inmates from California prisons

This is part of an ongoing battle in which the Federal Court has settled issues too politically difficult for the State Legislature. Frustrating doesn't come close, because - just like the rest of the Country - the 'will of the people' comes down to whether one dipshit Republican does/not get elected, or does/not expand his vocabulary beyond 'no'.

And of course the electorate blames the Democrats for 'failure to launch'.

Phantom Squats

  • Posted on: 18 January 2010
  • By: rba


Image © BumperDumper.com via Gizmag

Well gone are the days of the “phantom squat” or ducking behind a tree and hoping not to be stumbled on by a family of tourists. This nifty invention known rather fittingly as the Bumper Dumper...turn(s) the back of your vehicle into a veritable port-a-potty...

Grab yourself a portable shower enclosure, and you wouldn't even have to leave the road.

Shipping Alcohol

  • Posted on: 17 January 2010
  • By: rba


Image: Pumping ethanol from corn in 1933 @ DOE.gov

Quite naturally the proposal (Plan for 1,800-mile ethanol pipeline unveiled, Bruce C. Smith/IndyStar) must include very high security indeed, lest small holes be tapped along the length of the pipe, turning the thing into an 1800-mile long, everlasting supply of 'moonshine'. Which everybody knows is worth ten times the price of a gallon of gas, and which would render the individual too stoned to drive.

Ergo: drink 180-proof alcohol, save energy.

Shorted Handed

  • Posted on: 14 January 2010
  • By: rba

This morning the FCIC will talk to Eric Holder about the FBI's in/ability to keep up with mortgage fraud. They know the answer:

Lichtblau-Johnston-Nixon/NYT: F.B.I. Struggles to Handle Financial Fraud Cases (18 Oct 2008):

Since 2004...the bureau has repeatedly asked the Bush administration for more money to replenish the ranks of agents handling nonterrorism investigations...But each year, the requests have been denied...

Holder coulda phoned this one in.