Uncommon Sense

February 28, 2013

Fiscal Cliffs, Sequestrations, Bizarre Appointment Hearings, and Other BS

Filed under: Politics — Steve Ruis @ 8:29 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

Since the election, which apparently has no consequences, we have been treated to a fiscal cliff (Crisis!), a sequestration meat axe approach to budget restraint (Crisis!), bizarre appointee hearings including senators channeling the former Senator Joe McCarthy (Bengasi Crisis!), a convoluted process blocking the Violence Against Women Act (Freedom Crisis!). All manifestations of the GOP’s new zombie personality.

Now, some say the sequestration was the president’s idea. This is true. But you must go back and see what that effort was a solution to. You will find another faux crisis generated by the GOP. And the sequestration (a device Rep. Paul Ryan has been begging for for years) was designed as a terrible price to pay for a failure of the Supercommittee to do its task and since the Supercommittee failed, it really has no real function.

You should know by now what I am going to tell you the GOP’s motivation for these bizarre actions is. It is a well known historical trend a second term president has about 6-8 months to accomplish anything of note in their second term. We are now into Month 2 of President Obama’s second term and has anything worthwhile been discussed yet? No? Well, the VAWA passed yesterday but it would have passed six or eight months ago in any other time. Anything of substance? Really?

So, now you know.

And the stock market almost hit a new all-time high Dow Jones Average today. The finance people are happy. The middle class not so much. So, I guess the GOP’s strategy is working.

February 24, 2013

NRA Proves that We Are Not a Christian Nation

Filed under: Politics,Religion — Steve Ruis @ 8:24 am
Tags: , , ,

Christians say Jesus died to absolve you of your sins. Of course, there is no mention of this in the gospels but what Jesus did say in the Gospels is that we were not to oppose our enemies (“turn the other cheek,” etc.) and then he hammered the point home by giving himself up to his enemies who he knew wanted to put him to death. Point made. So what do Christians in this country do? They fortify themselves with assault weapons and such to avoid doing what Jesus taught them.

Clearly if this were a Christian nation as so many claim, the NRA would have no standing and people would turn away from resisting their enemies real and imagined. That is not happening, so we are not a Christian nation.

Quod erat demonstrandum.

February 22, 2013

The Sequester Blame Game: Stupid, Stupid, Stupid

Filed under: Politics — Steve Ruis @ 8:07 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

The GOP is trying to make the case that the Democrats, and President Obama specifically, are to blame for any damage to the economy done by the Sequester.

Duh! Large indiscriminant cuts are being made to government spending. Who do you think is in favor of such things?

A. Republicans
B. Democrats

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Ideal GOP Presidential Candidate for 2016

Filed under: Politics — Steve Ruis @ 8:06 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Clearly the absolutely best GOP candidate for President in 2016 is Senator Ted Cruz of Texas.

To explain this a little history is needed.

In 2008, when President Obama was elected to his first term, the percent of Americans willing to call themselves Republicans sank to historic lows, almost down to 20%. At that point the majority of the remains of the GOP was their hard core base, the uber-conservatives that for years (and years, and years) had been told that they needed to vote for moderate Republicans to win elections and that they “would be taken care of.”

With a little lubrication, aka money, supplied by billionaires the Tea Party was born and the tail began to wag the dog. The right-wing of the GOP bird began to take control. In 2010 they were asendant, but in 2012, they were forced to accept another “moderate” Republican, Mitt Romney, and they lost again.

The Tea Party/Republican Base has been promised a “real conservative candidate” for decades and haven’t had one since Barry Goldwater in 1964. Their time has come. They should have their candidate.

Ted Cruz would be perfect, but if not Senator Cruz, then someone to the right of him, maybe Rand Paul. Republican uber-conservatives deserve their day in the sunshine and deserve their candidate.

Please. (Pleeeaase!)

Republicans Want Sequester: Stupid, Stupid, Stupid

Filed under: Politics — Steve Ruis @ 8:04 pm
Tags: , , ,

Now the Republicans have a strategy (finally). They are going to let the Sequester happen, then move to restore the cuts to defense and dare the Democrats to appear to be soft on defense by voting against it.

The only response? Ask how are they going to pay for these unprecedented GOP-sponsored increases in government spending. Maybe they intend we just borrow the money from China.

Oh, the stupid! It burns; it burns!

February 21, 2013

Florida, State of Takers

Florida has decided to scrap its label of The Sunshine State and instead change it to “State of Takers.” (They thought The Taker State would sound too much like The Quaker State and confuse Floridians as to whether they lived in Florida or Pennsylvania.) Republican Governor Rick Scott, an unprosecuted Medicare scammer, has eschewed his previous position of not accepting the augmentation of Medicaid funds provided by the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) and has stated his willingness to take the funds.

Imagine the chutzpah of turning it down in the first place. “No, we don’t have any poor people here is Florida. Nothing to see here. Move along.” I mean the deal isn’t really so good. At first the federal government picks up 100% of the extra Medicaid costs to the state, but then the long slide into fiscal irresponsibility begins and by 2017, the feds will only pick up 90%.

Gosh, imagine what you would say if a major health insurer were to offer you a policy . . . for free, but in three years, you will have to pay ten cents on the dollar compared to full premium payers. You’d stand on your principles and tell them to go stuff it, right? You wouldn’t want to let them take away your freedom! The freedom to get sick and die without medical care; it is there in the Constitution, isn’t it?

Well, sleazy Governor Scott finally woke up and said it would be rude to not take such a deal. After all each Floridian now gets over $500 back from the federal government in cash and services over and above what they pay in federal taxes. It is a tradition in that state. You see they have a long history of being takers, can’t change now.

Mind Blowing Stupidity

Filed under: Politics — Steve Ruis @ 8:21 pm
Tags: , , , ,

On Monday night last, MSNBC ran a special program on the lies told to sell the Iraq War, called “Hubris.” Apt title. I didn’t learn too much that was new watching it. One of the two things I did not know was that only a handful of our Congressmen read the CIA assessment of the situation before voting for war, which report was, of course, loaded with caveats that would give anyone pause. I guess that is not so surprising. The other was absolutely mind blowing.

A Bush official stated that one of the reasons the Bushies found compelling as a reason to go to war was they felt that if Iraq were brought to its knees it would be a chilling message to all of the countries sponsoring terrorist groups. Well, I am not a big fan of state-sponsored terrorism but . . . if you ignore the fact that terrorism is a tool of the weak and oppressed and that state sponsorship is easy to hide and an overwhelming display of force would only make those states feel even weaker, one has to ask what those states would think when they see a totally fallacious case brought against a country which wasn’t engaging in state-sponsored terrorism. Wouldn’t they feel that they would be damned if they did and damned if they didn’t? That they might as well earn the label if they were going to get punished anyway? D’ja think?

Did the Bush Administration feel that all of the countries in the world would be fooled by a bunch of lies that were fairly easily exposed? Lies that their own intelligence services were well aware of?

Hubris, my ass. Hubris has a touch of nobility in it; this does not. Mind numbingly stupid! Arrogant and stupid! Words fail me.

Moronic Government (With Apologies to Morons)

A while back, Congress decided to create a Super Committee to deal with the “debt problem.” To make sure that the Super Committee did something, the bill authorizing the formation of the committee included mandatory spending cuts, a sequestration, falling on programs both Republicans and Democrats hold dear.

The result? The Committee failed and we are now looking down the barrel of the gun of the sequester. Large cuts in government spending will take place automatically (and almost indiscriminately) quite possibly launching another economic recession, almost certainly taking the wind out of the sails of the recovery.

So, a hypothetical problem (the “debt problem”) fostered a hypothetical solution that created a much worse problem. Sounds like something Congress would do.

Again, I can offer a simple solution. The sequester was a goad to get the committee to work. The committee didn’t work. So, repeal the whole thing. The repeal of a bill is a one sentence bill. Heck, even I can write it. It would take 15 minutes in both houses of Congress to vote on it, end of made up problem.

Sheesh! What a bunch of morons.

Winning the War on Drugs and Fixing the Debt Problem? No Problem.

The so-called War on Drugs has been an abject failure. This I have written about before so I won’t provide the details again, but in summary we have spent billions of dollars to turn huge numbers of our mostly young people into criminals and the price of drugs has gone down as they have become even more available. If there is one positive outcome from said war, I cannot identify it.

At the same time, we have accrued a bit more debt as a nation than is desirable and that, too, is a problem. Most who offer solutions suggest that recreational drugs be legalized and regulated and taxed and that, indeed, would solve both problems. The illegal drug market would shrivel and the taxes collected from drug sales could be used to pay down the national debt (quickly). But there are problems with this solution. It offends the moral sensibilities of some and doesn’t address the health issues associated with the use of current recreational drugs.

So, what to do, what to do? As a chemist I suggest . . . better living through chemistry. Rather than having the government do any work I suggest a competition. The prizes? A 99-year patent for the sale and distribution of legal recreational drugs. The prices charged will be government controlled because there will be only one provider of each (so there will be no competition to set prices) and the winning corporations will volunteer to not lobby the government on their drug as a condition of accepting the patent. (No hanky-panky allowed, please.)

The contest is to design recreational drugs that are non-abusable. With all drugs, dose is critical, so these drugs these must be very cleverly designed. To be nonabusable this means that a small amount of the drug gives one a slight buzz, a little more, a little more buzz, up to a point where additional drug administration either results in no effect (acceptable) or, better, a buzz kill.

The top five drugs get their patents. Drugstores will sell the stuffs, taxes will pay down the debt. Illicit drug purveyors will basically go away (not completely, we are a perverse people) and scads of money will be saved by law enforcement agencies who no longer have to bust pot smokers, prisons will be evacuated, generations of our youth will no longer be criminalized.

The only moral objection will be from those who do not like to see people enjoying themselves and we can dismiss them as crotchety old farts.

It’s brilliant, I tells yuh!

February 19, 2013

Rich People Are Different

Rich conservatives often seem to not want their taxes to go to support poor people and other evils, but seem to want the government to ever expand the public monies spent on “national defense.” This does seem consistent in that our “national defense” often seems to involve raining armaments onto the heads of poor people in other countries.

I think it would be wise, therefore, for President Obama to sign an executive order stipulating that rich people’s taxes be only spent on defense. In this manner, rich people would no longer need to feel any angst at all about their hard-earned dollars going into some poor person’s pocket while simultaneously supplying them with the good feeling that it is they that are keeping us safe from invasions of . . . of . . . well, poor people from other countries.

Next Page »

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.