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Howell Scrooge ’12

Here’s the thing: Barack Obama may be my classmate, and nominally the candidate of the party in which I’m (nominally) registered, but I don’t see how any self-respecting progressive (or for that matter, human being) can support a President– ANY President– who holds meetings every Tuesday to decide which human beings the United States government should murder. Sorry. So… imagine my disappointment when the possibility of voting for the (not so paradoxically) more liberal Mitt Romney evaporated in a heartbeat today, as old Thurston Howell III Romney (Willard to his friends) picked Paul Ryan for his running mate, not a...

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Cue food riots

Brother Dmitry lays out the various current conditions (particularly, widespread drought and crop loss), and diagnoses conditions of general unpleasantness (including food riots) in many parts of the planet. While the United States is by no means on top of “the vulnerable” list, it is certainly not on the bottom. Particularly critical is the 50-million strong food stamp population (whether his fault or not, in sheer numbers, my classmate Barack really is the food stamp president), the irony is that the cost for the “SNAP” program was a comedically low $76 billion– a preposterously low figure to keep the rubes...

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Men are from Mars…

I believe the joke was, “they can put a man on the moon… so why can’t we send all of them there?” It IS cool to see that the “Curiosity Rover” has evidently landed on the surface of Mars without crashing and burning (assuming we accept the NASA propaganda that it didn’t– or that the project even exists). Thing is, I’m delighted to see the government spend money on anything that isn’t either homicide, or a gratuitous subsidy to rich people who bribed members of Congress… so, a cool science project like this that would make any high school robotics...

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Sick Schmuck Kills Six Sikhs

Another day, another psychotic bastard opens fire on innocent people in America, today, in Wisconsin, where six Sikh worshipers were killed at a temple near Milwaukee, the gunman later killed by a police officer who was wounded in the shootout. Gun control, bla bla bla. We are so far past the point where gun control will do any good [outside the few pockets of sanity that already have it] that I’m almost disgusted to have to utter those two words. Of course, life as we know it in New York City would actually be impossible without our city’s quite strict...

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Suck it, losers

It seems London-based HSBC, one of the world’s largest banks, helped launder, inter alia, Mexican drug lord money and… money for OBL and the 9-11 highjackers. And while a bunch of largely innocent schmucks will presumably spend the rest of their rather unpleasant lives at Guantanamo or Bagram and untold thousands of Afghans, Pakistanis, Yemenis, Somalis, Iraqis, Bahrainis, Syrians and God knows who else will be maimed, tortured, or killed by the American war machine, supposedly to “protect us from the terrorists”… that our largest financial institutions [and recipients of billions of taxpayer funded bailouts]… are funding… well, just another...

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The American Dream, in one

This, from Think Progress, nails it: private prisons spent just $45 million in bribes lobbying expenses, and netted over $5 billion just for detaining immigrants alone. Short answer to “what are WE all doing wrong?” is quite simple: playing by an outdated set of rules called “fairness” and what used to be known as “the rules” or “the law.” Fuck that. Among the bribes lobbying are efforts to have legislatures pass harsher sentences to increase private prison profits. Ain’t America grand? America is now a simple game: unless you want to be left behind with the rubes and suckers of...

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Dog days of summer

Rest in peace, Dr. Sally Ride, America’s first female astronaut, who died at 61 of pancreatic cancer. In 1983, Dr. Ride was aboard the space shuttle Challenger (which would blow up three years later, with two other women aboard), for her debut mission. At the time, Dr. Ride’s mission [not to mention her whole career in the hard sciences] was quite groundbreaking (notwithstanding that the Soviets had sent women to space decades earlier…for all its flaws, the USSR had much less of a stick up its ass about things like that than we did… and do… note that there are,...

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Best Congress money can buy

Alrightie then: this from A.P. lists members of Congress and others in power who got discounted loans from Countrywide in exchange for favorable treatment of that entity (and its sugar-mama, Fannie Mae). Naming names of the “VIPs” who took the bribes favorably discounted loans., we see… that the Keating Mozillo Five Six includes: Sens. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) and Kent Conrad (D-N.D), both chairmen of key committees; and House members Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-Calif.), Brooklyn’s own Edolphus Towns (D-N.Y.); Elton Gallegly (R-Calif.), and Tom Campbell (R.-Calif.). Also in on the Countrywide discounted loan gravy train were .Mary Jane Collipriest, who was...

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Happy 4 July

It’s that most irritating of situations– a July 4th (or Christmas or New Year’s Day) that fall on a Wednesday, more or less screwing up the possibility of a long weekend for many, but nonetheless, still interfering with the flow of a week. Yes, we’re supposed to celebrate that day some 236 years hence when a curmudgeonly Boston lawyer and a slave-owning Virginia Renaissance man, both of whom would go on to be Presidents of the United States, collaborated on a Declaration of Independence cribbed from John Locke and other Enlightenment philosophers. And it kind of worked for quite a...

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Healthy dose of political reality

For those interested, the incomparable Scotusblog has complete coverage of the Supreme Court’s affirmance of the constitutionality of “Obamacare.” The most surprising wrinkle is the (unexpected) pragmatism of Chief Justice Roberts, who, correctly, found that this Franken-statute exceeded Congress’s powers under the Commerce Clause, but also found, in a most unexpected and “anti-formalistic” way that the “individual mandate” that is the primary funding mechanism of Romneycare Obamacare Oromney care Affordable Care Act was within Congress’s power under its taxing power. I readily confess that as an employed individual with health insurance (btw, for which my share of the premium is...

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