What if Kurzweil doesn't make it?
What if all the switches get stuck on destroy?
When the shuttle goes, we won't take it
When the final counter-measures are deployed
All we'll have is all this time

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Linkee-poo on a Tuesday Monday

Jim Wright on Labor Day, "Better, progress, those words are defined very, very differently by those who live in the manor house and to those who labor in the fields." And I'll just add here that when Jim says that for our advancements (40 hour work week, weekend, holidays, improved pay, everything labor has gained in the last 150 years) that people paid with their lives, he's not only talking about dying in the mills from being crushed, poisoned, or mangled, he also means that to win these thing, some people where shot. In some mill towns as workers striked for better conditions, the boss would hire the Pinkertons (or another private army) to roll into the company town with a gatling gun on a flatbed car and fire indiscriminately into the company town. That's how they'd "break" the strike. And in general we don't teach kids that history. It is no aberration that the middle-class dream, wages, and benefits all started going downhill in the late 60s as unions began their decline. It's not a coincidence that real wages haven't increased since the 80s when union busting was elected into the White House (which is doubly ironic as Reagan was a union leader at one time). I have my own criticism of unions, but I can tell you the best job I had, the one I really hoped to retire from, was a union shop. No kings or landlords.

"NASA will pay you up to $750,000 to come up with a way to turn CO2 into other molecules on Mars." Get cracking, McGee.

"Japan has been hit by its strongest typhoon in 25 years, with officials warning more than a million people to evacuate their homes." Japan just can catch a break this year.

"Tropical Storm Gordon will likely strengthen into a hurricane before hitting the northern Gulf Coast Tuesday night, forecasters say, urging people along the coast from Louisiana to Florida to beware high winds and a dangerous storm surge." If Louisiana and the Gulf Coast can't withstand a Category 1 hurricane hit some 13 years after Katrina we do not deserve to lead the free world.

Why you're not hearing about massive Obamacare premium hikes this year. "The price of a 2019 policy sold on the ACA exchanges will increase less than 4 percent according to an analysis of preliminary filings from insurers in all 50 states by ACASignups.net, a web site and blog run by analyst Charles Gaba that tracks ACA enrollment and insurer participation." Despite all that conservatives have done to weaken and kill the ACA, it looks like the market is finding its footing.

"The foundation of the lawsuit is a provision in last year’s mammoth tax bill that eliminated the tax penalty on Americans who don’t have health insurance, but still preserved the technical requirement that people have coverage… Now in the Texas case, the 20 governors and attorneys general argue the requirement is no longer constitutional because the tax penalty has been eliminated." I would say, "Good luck with that" since it's laughable on its face, but this is Texas.

"The price of insulin in the U.S. has more than doubled since 2012. That has put the life-saving hormone out of reach for some people with diabetes, like Smith-Holt's son Alec Raeshawn Smith." (Grokked from Chuck Wendig)

"With his decision two summers ago to not stand for the national anthem, Colin Kaepernick became the face of a protest movement in the NFL against racial injustice and police brutality. Now, the former quarterback has become a face of one of the most iconic advertising campaigns in the history of sports: Nike's 'Just Do It' campaign." Which has led to many conservative mutilating their own clothing by cutting off the Nike logo, to own the libs or something like that. Reminds me of the time when the French didn't support our invasion of Iraq which led to "Freedom Fries" and conservatives emptying DC liquor stores of the French wine stocks and dumping them down the storm sewer. You know, after they paid for them. That'll teach 'em.

"The Taliban on Tuesday released a statement announcing that Haqqani had died after a long illness at the age of 72." The founder of the Haqqani Network is dead. Unfortunately his son is an even bigger asshole.

Because the GOP is not done fucking the country over, they are looking to make their tax cuts of last year permanent. Note, they couldn't make them permanent last year because it screws up government financing, so it could only be a "temporary" measure because of the rules. But, now there's some concern over the State and Local Tax (SALT) deduction cap. "Largely because of the SALT cap dilemma, House Republicans are hitting the pause button on 'Tax Reform 2.0' legislation, according to three GOP aides who requested anonymity to speak about the matter. The lawmakers want to weigh the political benefits and risks of a vote on the bill in the coming weeks, and assess if they have enough support to pass it." Of course the corporate and high-income tax cuts were permanent. So they can afford to screw over the middle-class. Again.

Speaking of fucking the country over… "The Senate Judiciary Committee begins confirmation hearings Tuesday on the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Republicans, who control the Senate, hope to confirm Kavanaugh and cement a 5-4 conservative majority on the high court before its new term begins next month."

Despite what you may have heard, "As both parties begin their final post-Labor Day sprint to Election Day, there are concrete signs that Democratic voters are fired up heading into the midterm elections… Nowhere is that more evident than in the majority of states that have already held primaries. There's been massive increases in Democratic turnout while often a minimal uptick — or even noticeable dip — in turnout among Republican voters." I've seen several stories about how Democratic turnout was down, but any data I've seen shows the exact opposite. Dear Democrats, as one of the first measures you should do once you're back in power is to expand the voting franchise by reversing the past decades worth of GOP mismanagement when it comes to voting. Conservatives will scream about "illegal aliens" voting and voter fraud, so you better be prepared with the actual statistics and witty rejoinders.

"Eddie Devine voted for President Donald Trump because he thought he would be good for American business. Now, he says, the Trump administration’s restrictions on seasonal foreign labor may put him out of business." He says he was tricked by the Devil. No, fucker, you scammed yourself. You thought all those policies would only hurt everyone else, and because you were "loyal" and a "good person" you wouldn't be affected. Well, asshole, the joke is on you. Guess you're going to have to pay competitive wages to get Americans to work for you (or hire "illegals", which is what you'll end up doing). (Grokked from Vincent O'Conner)

"And so you can't always get what you want, but those who believe the Trump-Russia scandal is a big deal with sweeping implications for the 45th president and American democracy may have got what they needed with news Friday afternoon of a guilty plea by a GOP political consultant named W. Samuel Patten… Who is Sam Patten? That's what a lot of people were asking on Friday afternoon. Seems there's a lot to unpack here." And Capone was taken down by his bookkeeper. Thats the problem with people like Trump, they don't take care of the big people, and they ignore the small people. And it's the small people who will fuck yo over. Every single time. (Grokked from Kathryn Cramer)

And apparently it's worse than we thought. "President Donald Trump's closest aides have taken extraordinary measures in the White House to try to stop what they saw as his most dangerous impulses, going so far as to swipe and hide papers from his desk so he wouldn't sign them, according to a new book from legendary journalist Bob Woodward." Bob is out with a new book this month and I predict he will sell millions and be pilloried by the president.

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