Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Bad Joke Called Christmas

All right – how many of you out there feel just a little uneasy with this Christmas thing? No - I am not talking about the usual, “I can hardly wait to get all my damn shopping done unease.” I am talking about something completely different. It is something that comes from both your heart and mind at the same time. Moreover, that something keeps clawing at you – telling you something is not right with this – something does not make sense?

The answer is really quite simple. Christmas is a holiday that really only celebrates consumption. The more we engage in consumption the better the Christmas, right? And the birth of this Christian Savior (Jesus) is a rationalization for this whole crock of consuming shit? So exactly what does the birth of the son of the Christian deity have to do with the consuming of massive quantities of goods and services? How exactly does this honor or celebrate the birth of this individual?

The answer is that it does not celebrate anything except the fact that thousands of companies have successfully convinced millions of people to buy shit that they do not need or really even want.

So celebrate this birthday as if it is a birthday. I imagine a simple offering to the Christian deity would probably suffice (I believe this works in other religions). But for Christ’s sake (no pun intended), do not spend the next month maxing out your VISA card, so all your kids can have everything they have seen for the last three months on television. Get a clue – the bad joke is on you and its called Christmas!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Center-Right Nation Watch

There has been a major change in the political landscape brought about by a seismic shift of the political plates of public opinion. The shift has most definitely been toward the left. The overall political leaning now of the majority of Americans has been labeled accurately as center-left.

For anyone who believes that our media has distanced itself from the right wing’s propaganda machine should be advised. Beginning immediately after election night, our media is now parroting their center-right mantra a total of 240 times a day.

"Center-Right Nation" Watch - Study Shows References Spiked Immediately After Election Day
by: David Sirota


When I wrote my first column about the "center-right nation" and subsequently launched the "Center-Right Nation Watch" series on this blog I predicted that the news media would actually increase its usage of this term after Obama won. I did a Lexis-Nexis search of the term, and was the first to note the trend and make the prediction that "if Obama wins, expect more frantic talk from the fringe about how electing a black man billed as an Islamic Karl Marx obviously means our country is more conservative than ever." Read entire article here.

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Monday, November 10, 2008

Governor Palin looking for Lost Underwear?

One day you are running for Vice President of the United States and the next you are looking for underwear under your kids' beds!

Palin sorts clothes to see what belong to the RNC
Palin's father says daughter is sorting through clothes to see which owned by Republican Party

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin spent part of the weekend going through her clothing to determine what belongs to the Republican Party after it spent $150,000-plus on a wardrobe for the vice presidential nominee, according to Palin's father.

Palin and John McCain's campaign faced a storm of criticism over the tens of thousands of dollars spent at such high-end stores as Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus to dress the nominee. Republican National Committee lawyers are still trying to determine exactly what clothing was bought for Palin, what was returned and what has become of the rest.

Palin's father, Chuck Heath, said his daughter spent the day Saturday trying to figure out what belongs to the RNC.

"She was just frantically ... trying to sort stuff out," Heath said. "That's the problem, you know, the kids lose underwear, and everything has to be accounted for." Read entire article here.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

The Complete Collapse of the American Economy?

The signs are unmistakable – our economy is slowly sinking into a depression. There is no need to try to deny it, pretend it isn’t happening or run from the truth. With each passing moment, our economy is spiraling down into completely unfamiliar territory.

Reading a recent article in the New York Times regarding Iceland’s collapsed economy brought home the reality of where we might be headed.

Overnight, people lost their savings. Prices are soaring. Once-crowded restaurants are almost empty. Banks are rationing foreign currency, and companies are finding it dauntingly difficult to do business abroad. Inflation is at 16 percent and rising. People have stopped traveling overseas. The local currency, the krona, was 65 to the dollar a year ago; now it is 130. Companies are slashing salaries, reducing workers' hours and, in some instances, embarking on mass layoffs. Read entire article here.

My first thought was one of self preservation – what would happen to me if there was a collapse like this with our economy? Would I have a job? Would everything I know now and enjoy now, be just a distant memory of the good old days?

I really don’t know if an Iceland like, total economic collapse is possible in the United States? For all I know it might be possible. But at the very least, we are in for some very severe structural alterations to our economy.

We will not be returning to an economy that is so heavily dependent on consumer spending. There will not be a way to spend our way out of this situation. Spending will only prolong the inevitable and delay the changes that must be made.

The structural renaissance that is about to begin will be very painful and dislocating for millions of Americans. Our government will have to provide transitioning safety nets to literally rescue people from the spin-off repercussions of the coming changes.

In six months or a year or two years will I still be sitting in a comfortable home connected to the world with hundreds of dollars of electronic equipment? Or will I be sitting in a shelter waiting for my next meal? I guess only time will tell.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

We Won!

During my morning drive to the office today, everything seemed a little brighter. It had nothing to do with the amount of light entering my pupils. It was the reality of a new era and a new hope for the future. The time of thugs, liars and criminals was finally ending. We had finally won back the White House! We had made the dream come true. We said, "Yes we can!" And now we can say, "Yes we did help President Obama become the 44th president of the United States!" We won!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Young voters cell phone use translates into a landslide for Obama

The Republican Party is about to flat-line. A tsunami of record proportions is rising in these last hours before Election Day. Millions of new young voters will join us to defeat this mutant machine that has cursed our political landscape for too long.

I predict of landslide of epic proportions. I believe the current polling data does not accurately reflect the actual size of the Obama lead. Because of the extensive calling of landline phones to conduct polling, thousands of young newly registered voters are not being surveyed and therefore are not part of the current numbers.

Recent data from Pew Research Center Publications conclusions on cell phone use and 2008 elections:

Current polling in the 2008 presidential election shows a very tight race between Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain. In part because of the strong support Obama is attracting among younger voters, and as the number of Americans who are reachable only by cell phones rises, interest continues to grow in the question of whether public opinion polls that do not include cell phones are accurately measuring the relative levels of support for the two candidates.

The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press has conducted three major election surveys with both cell phone and landline samples since the conclusion of the primaries. In each of the surveys, there were only small, and not statistically significant, differences between presidential horserace estimates based on the combined interviews and estimates based on the landline surveys only. Yet a virtually identical pattern is seen across all three surveys: In each case, including cell phone interviews resulted in slightly more support for Obama and slightly less for McCain, a consistent difference of two-to-three points in the margin. Read entire article here.

A two or three point (which could be 3 or 4 point) addition to Obama’s current lead translates into a landslide election. On Wednesday we will be burying what is left of Karl Rove’s permanent Republican majority. For whom the bell tolls Karl, it tolls for thee!

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