Uncommon Sense

November 22, 2022

Which Issue is the Newly Republican House Be Most Focused Upon?

Republicans were elected to office promising to do something about crime, inflation, high taxes, etc. but the first thing announced to be at the top of their agenda, is . . . well, you guess, from this list:
1. crime
2. inflation
3. high taxes
4. abortion
5. Russian war sanctions
6. the new IRS hires
7. the President’s son, Hunter Biden.

Well, what do you think? Yes, it is Hunter Biden! If you correctly guessed that is the case, your winner’s prize will be shipped to you within the next 30 days. This is the greatest issue on the Republican political radar facing this country.

But Republicans are multi-taskers! While they are busy investigating a private citizen, they will also be busy trying to rescind the funding for the 87,000 new IRS agents recently authorized. So, their first crime legislation is making it easier for tax cheats to evade paying taxes. (And since those new agents were to specifically target rich tax evaders, we are not at all surprised, are we?) I am sure those rich criminals will be grateful and pony up campaign donations with the money they save from cheating on their taxes.

Oh, remember the rapid anti-communists of the GOP’s past? The “New Republicans” will also try to prevent any more aid being provided to Ukraine in its defense against invading Russian armies. I guess they learned that “Aid to Putin” was a good thing from Donald Trump.

November 20, 2022

What Freedom Did We Fight For, Exactly?

The MAGA/Freedom nuts keep referring to the Revolutionary War and the “freedom” that was at the heart of it. And they claim the freedom they want is to get the government off of their backs so they can do what they want, without interference.

Is that the freedom that our American forefathers fought for? I don’t think so.

Phrases such as “no taxation without representation” come to mind and some of the early requests of the American colonists were to have Americans added to Parliament to give the colonies some say, at least an ability to argue, about the policies the British government enacted for the colonies.

The final break was a contest for the ability to govern ourselves, and not be subject to an autocratic king or, for that matter, a parliament in which we had no say.

So, we fought for our freedom to create our own government. And the resulting government is a manifestation of the freedom we won.

So, how could the current MAGA/Freedom nuts get it so wrong? According to them “government is not the solution; government is the problem.” They, in fact, have been polled to be wanting an autocrat, preferably Donald Trump, but any MAGA Autocrat would probably due. They are admitting that they are not freedom loving and that they would rather kiss an autocrat’s ass, than go about the work needed to make sure the government is as we want it to be. They are basically saying “Scrap our representative government, give us a king.”

Appalling.

November 5, 2022

Hunter Biden’s Laptop—Where’s the Beef?

Recently a zombie story of the news keeps coming up. The latest iteration of this story is that the original version of the story was suppressed, suppressed I tell you!

Just operating from memory, the original story involved a laptop computer belonging to Hunter Biden, the President’s son, that was left at a repair shop and then not picked up. Shortly thereafter, the hard drive of that computer, or a facsimile thereof, made its way into the hands of Rudy Giuliani, a presidential advisor to Donald J. Trump.

Now, I understand that a piece of equipment left for repair and not picked up or the repair paid for can be forfeit, depending upon the laws of the state involved, but how is it that the owner of said laptop could not be contacted? Is not his father’s phone number listed in all government directories? Okay, let’s say Hunter Biden was too stoned to remember where he left his laptop or even that he had one. So, after jumping through the legal hoops, the repair shop owner takes possession of the laptop. Now he owns the hardware, but what about the software and data? Since he isn’t the owner of the licenses for the software, he doesn’t own that and, according to the law, cannot even use it. What about the data stored on the computer? Let us say that one file includes the formula for Coca-Cola? Does he now own that? Can he sell it? I don’t think so.

So, this “person” who is now the owner of the laptop takes the hard drive out or clones it and gets it to the political opponents of the prior owner’s father, who is running for the office of president.

So, where’s the beef?

Where are the documents on that hard drive that are so damning? Where is the political beef?

All I hear is whining about how the story was suppressed. What story?

This seems like a typical GOP story. There is no “there” there, other than the story that they have spun. Like Benghazi. Like Hillary’s emails.

I argue that if here were anything damning on that hard drive, the GOP would have found a way to leverage it . . . and they haven’t so . . . hey, GOP, shutupaboudit!

October 29, 2022

Preservatives, Not Conservatives!

Filed under: Culture,Politics — Steve Ruis @ 10:45 am
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Conservatives should be renamed Preservatives for all the work they’re doing to preserve an American oligarchy. They aren’t interested in conserving water, air, the climate, democracy domestic nor abroad, America’s soft power, school children, women with dangerous unviable pregnancies, national security, ethical personal behavior, or even ideological consistency.” Dash MacIntyre

Sounds like a plan, are you on board?

Postscript

The whole piece is worth a read. You can find it here: Donald Trump Is F**king The Elephant Corpse of the GOP

Here’s a taste of the rest:

“Republicans can convince themselves that literally anything is justified to “keep Democrats from ruining the country”… even ruining the country.

“Republicans being the party of fiscal responsibility is the greatest myth in American history.

“Two Republican presidents in a row have inherited booming economies and wrecked them, inherited respected US statures and defiled them, and inherited falling deficits and ballooned them.”

October 24, 2022

The Right Wing’s Pitch

From the US to the UK to Italy, their pitch is the same:
If you work ridiculously hard for significantly less wealth than you create for your corporate overlords, we’ll do our best to devalue your money, cut the public services you’re paying for, sell off all your public assets, cut taxes on your bankers and land-lorders, let monopolies spawn like mold spores, and ensure your children have absolutely zero hope of owning a home or ever being free of colossal amounts of compounding interest-laden debt.” (Jared A. Block)

Nail, meet hammer!

The writer is a Brit, I suspect, but it seems that he understands American politics better than many of us.

October 21, 2022

Government Handouts—Bad?

There are conservatives who believe that all “government handouts” are bad and lead to laziness on the part of ordinary people. They seem to overlook the dwarfing handouts given to American businesses and focus in one the trivial ones given to ordinary citizens. Here is but one example.

Elon Musk, the nation’s richest man, is heavily subsidized by taxpayers, according to an article in the Los Angeles Times. Musk’s net worth is somewhere about $210 billion. Yet he goes where the government money is.

Los Angeles entrepreneur Elon Musk has built a multibillion-dollar fortune running companies that make electric cars, sell solar panels and launch rockets into space.

And he’s built those companies with the help of billions in government subsidies.

Tesla Motors Inc., SolarCity Corp. and Space Exploration Technologies Corp., known as SpaceX, together have benefited from an estimated $4.9 billion in government support, according to data compiled by The Times. The figure underscores a common theme running through his emerging empire: a public-private financing model underpinning long-shot start-ups.

“He definitely goes where there is government money,” said Dan Dolev, an analyst at Jefferies Equity Research. “That’s a great strategy, but the government will cut you off one day.”

The figure compiled by The Times comprises a variety of government incentives, including grants, tax breaks, factory construction, discounted loans and environmental credits that Tesla can sell. It also includes tax credits and rebates to buyers of solar panels and electric cars.

(From Diane Ravitch’s blog)

October 12, 2022

The Great Leap Forward . . . to the Eighteenth Century!

Voltaire used to joke scathingly of the eighteen century French aristocrats. They didn’t know how to read or write or know things. They could hire people to read, to be expert, to be uncertain; they themselves had all they needed: power and certainty, both of which stemmed from their “divine right to rule.” Their illiteracy was considered a badge of office for them. Fast forward 250 years or so and the modern Republican Party has embraced the ruling mentality of those French aristocrats. Things are true because they say they are true. Election results are what they say they are, the heck with actual counts. And elections aren’t over until they say they are over.

The bizarre statements of Republican office holders and candidates for office are manifold.

  • Laura Loomer believes it’s “obvious” that “ the FBI works with the Democrat Party to carry out mass shooting false flags so that they can actually push for gun control.”
  • And which Church does Donald Trump go to? (The Church of the Nineteenth Hole?) When asked, Mr. Trump was unable to quote a single bible verse, yet DJT is their “Anointed one” even equated to the second coming of Jesus.
  • Former Ohio state legislator Candice Keller says “Right now there are two parties in this country: the party of Trump, and the other party is called We Hate God.”
  • Leah Svensson claims that the founding fathers “knew Jesus Christ as their personal lord and savior,” which is quite amazingly bizarre.

We are in need of a new Voltaire, or squad of Voltaires, who will savagely satirize these new aristocrats, who are claiming divine right to rule and possessing some power already.

October 11, 2022

Republicans Are Against Redistribution of Wealth

Well, the title of this post needs a clarification: they are against redistribution of wealth towards you and way from their paymasters, redistribution the other way is fine, just fine.

A recent study by the RAND Corporation (https://www.rand.org/pubs/working_papers/WRA516-1.html) came to the conclusion that “the cumulative effect of four decades of income growth below the growth of per capita gross national income and estimate that aggregate income for the population below the 90th percentile over this time period would have been $2.5 trillion (67 percent) higher in 2018 had income growth since 1975 remained as equitable as it was in the first two post-War decades” This in essence means that 2500 billion dollars of wealth was redistributed from the bottom 90% of our economy to the very top. The median worker should be making $102,000 per year instead of the current value of about half of that.

A Fast Company blog post outlines the findings quite well (https://medium.com/fast-company/we-were-shocked-rand-study-uncovers-massive-income-shift-to-the-top-1-a4970c2e0863).

Now I have heard some say that if we had received those funds all along, it would have just inflated prices so much that we wouldn’t be any better off, which misses the point entirely. It is not so much that our money left our control, it is that it went into the oligarch’s pockets and was under their control, and they are using that money to buy politicians, judges, news media and more to in effect gain control over the entire country!

While both parties were bribed to help pull this off, the GOP is by far the worst perpetrator. When you hear a Republican say “we are against redistribution of wealth” realize they are saying we don’t want to give you your money back and we want to keep stealing more. When you hear a Republican saying “We don’t want government regulations, what they are really saying is “we don’t want government competing with our manipulations of the markets and the environment.”

The GOP used to be the Party of Big Business. Now they are the Party of Big Money, and the Democrats are lining up behind them. We desperately need to start throwing some of these bums out and electing candidates like Bernie Sanders.

I’m Shocked, Shocked I Tell You!

Filed under: Culture,Politics — Steve Ruis @ 11:00 am
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In the linked post, Spike Dolomite calls out the Republican politicians who called the Democrat Infrastructure bill “wasteful spending, government over reach, radical and socialist” yet are lining up with their hands out to receive funds from that bill for their states.

Lauren Boebert called the bill “garbage” and then asked for $33 million for a new bridge in Colorado.

“I was surprised to see so many socialists in the Republican caucus,” President Biden said. He could have said “I was surprised to see so many hypocrites in the Republican caucus” instead but that brush could paint the Dems as well.

https://spikedolomite.medium.com/socialist-republicans-b6adcfc8fd43

October 10, 2022

Republicans Claim They Can Be Trusted!

Filed under: Culture,Politics — Steve Ruis @ 2:24 pm
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The longest-tenured Republican in the U.S. Senate, Chuck Grassley of Iowa, has pledged to vote against a national ban on abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy that Lindsay Graham (R) of South Carolina and chamber colleagues proposed last month, joining a growing chorus of conservative lawmakers opposed to that bill.

Now, if you believe him, there are still a few problems . . .

  1. How often have you heard politicians claim “I will not do A” and then turn around and do just that?
  2. Grassley’s motivation may be just to win the next election and hope that that bill never comes to a vote and he has six more years in the Senate for any furor to die down. (Besides, he is 86 and probably will be dead before his next term is up. He may even be running for the burial insurance.)
  3. Some GOPers oppose this bill because it is too liberal! They want stricter laws in place. Hershel Walker, GOP candidate for governor in Georgia, wants no abortions under any circumstances, for example.
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