Sunday, April 17, 2011

Trump Card

Efuckingnough of this combforward tool on my fucking teevee, and these supposed "polls" touting his viability. Is there one (1) lamestream media entity who has the balls to step up and call bullshit on this assclown?

Look, let's break this down into simple empirical components, regarding Trump's supposed interest in running for president:
  1. Either he is serious or he is not serious.
  2. Either he is viable or he is not viable.
Okay then, let's take these one at a time, and lay out rational responses from a responsible media to each instance. Serious or not serious? If he is presumed to be serious, then he should immediately be prodded for specifics. It is not enough to lob cheap "no shit, Sherlock" rhetorical scuds like "increase revenue and cut spending" (which surely will leave generations of economists and politicians scratching their heads, wishing they had thought of such a brilliant proposal), a serious contender gives at least some indication as to how these goals can be accomplished.

If he is presumed to not be serious about running (and I am 99.999% convinced that this is the case), then the media entities in question need to stop giving him high-profile opportunities for his tedious ankle-biting, and call bullshit on him forthwith.

The question of viability is much simpler. Let me put it in a way that even the kids in the cheap seats can see clearly -- if Donald Trump is even remotely viable to become President of these here Yewnighted States, then this country really has well and truly lost its collective fucking mind.

There is absolutely no reason in the world this fucktard should be in any conversation of serious people. Trump is merely another warm body in big floppy shoes, helping to stuff the Republitard clown car. He is there to make Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich look good.

Am I actually concerned that Trump has a shot? Of course not. For one thing, Trump is not serious about running. Oh, he's probably serious enough when he claims he could do a better job. But that's the thing -- he's an egocentric asshole. He seriously and completely believes that he's above ever having to explain anything to anybody. Which is, I suppose, technically true when you own your own business, you get to be boss.

But obviously being a successful politician requires having at least some collaborative skills, of understanding that the way you get all the pigs on your side is to let them have access to the trough. Trump's idea of success is gold-plating the trough and eminent-domaining all the land around it for another tacky casino, declare bankruptcy and scuttle back onto the scene yet again with an armload of cooze and a belly full of gall.

This whole thing is just a stretched out promotional stunt for his stupid fucking show, because what the world really needs right now is maximum eyeballs glued 200 hours a week to Meat Loaf and Gary Busey tearing each other's throats out. I do hope Meredith Vieira, when she gets home from helping Trump whore this godawful mess, takes a good long look in the mirror and sobs a while; if she ever had a shred of journamalistic integrity left, it's just dander in Trump's forehead pelt at this point. Why not just abandon the pretense of "interviewing" this fucking toad, and just replace the Today show with an endless looping promo of Trump's piece-of-shit time-waster?

So. It's a big lie, and everyone knows it -- he's not serious, and he's not viable. The only way he runs is if there's money in it. But on the off chance that you, Tonstant Weader, have the grim misfortune to run into some truncheon-to-the-skull fuckwit of your acquaintance who voices their approval of this nonsense, and wants Trump to run so they can vote for him, there is only one sensible question to be asked of said fuckwit:
If the biggest crisis facing America right now is jobs, then why would you want to vote for some fifth-rate reality show hack whose sole talent is firing people?

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Or, a Baby's Arm Holding an Apple

Since the only things this country produces reliably well anymore are perpetual war and perpetual campaigning, it is no surprise to find that Obama has officially tossed his hat in the ring for the election eighteen blessed months from now. It is of even less surprise that the most predictable by-product to emanate from these endless campaigns comes a-wafting from the cloaca of SF Comical columnist Mark Morford:

To the sneering disappointment of the puritanical left, Obama has turned out to be pretty much exactly what he said he'd be during his '08 campaign: flawed, exceedingly moderate, a resolute compromiser, overly pragmatic when he should've been a badass, temperate when he should've been white hot and furious, offering concessions when he should be bringing the hammer down.

In short, Obama has failed. He has not at all been the delicious chocolatey superjesus of radical sociopolitical transformation most on the hard left hoped, prayed and sacrificed precious Prius bumper ad space he would be.

Heh. Indeed. Yes, the peons, it seems, have been insufficiently grateful for all the wonderful things Obama has done for them. Shame on them. Bad peons!

Enough. Look, the man had plenty of opportunities early on to do at least some of the things he said he would do -- end a war of futility in Afghanistan, finish a troop drawdown from Iraq, rein in the rapacious bad-faith behavior of scumbag bankstas. See, I don't have a Prius, motherfucker. I have a house that's worth less than it was ten years ago, because Clinton and Rubin thought it'd be a super idea to gut the Glass-Stegall Act, and to monkeyfuck the securitization laws, leaving the door wide open for Lloyd and Jamie and their henchmen to totally ass-rape the economy, and make everyone else pay their eight-figure retention bonuses. Because they're soooo fucking skilled, you see.

We all get that politics is the art of the possible. The problem is that neither Obama, nor the Democrat supermajority, even tried to make their electoral mandate count. They shot their political capital on an industry-underwritten boondoggle for "health care reform", and came up for air only to find that not only did it not create any jobs, but that it didn't even really resolve the problem it purports to resolve. And then they had nothing else to work with, to get anything else accomplished.

So here we are. And yes, we all get that the Republicans seem to be content sifting through what charitably seems to be a carny freak show of unelectable poltroons -- and worse yet, Newt Gingrich. But really, isn't it part of the problem, that even up against a laughingstock ticket, Obama and the Democrats still always manage to find themselves instinctively punting on first down, or sucking up to the hand that inevitably slaps them?

How else does the fucking budget -- after Obama conceded more than the Republicans wanted in the first place -- get hung up on Planned Parenthood, how does noted sheepfucker Jon Kyl trot out a blatant lie about over 90% of PP's services being abortion-related, and the Dems don't have the stones even to denounce that? And we're supposed to vote for that shit, gratefully, unquestioningly, whatever 'n' ever, amen.

Get ready for another year and a half of this happy horseshit.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Low-Hanging Fruit

Obama's Libya campaign/non-war has reeked of Kosovo since day one, cynical and half-assed to its very core, and newer info only reinforces the similarities:
Two diplomatic sources at the United Nations independently confirmed that Washington, via Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, gave the go-ahead for Saudi Arabia to invade Bahrain and crush the pro-democracy movement in their neighbor in exchange for a "yes" vote by the Arab League for a no-fly zone over Libya - the main rationale that led to United Nations Security Council resolution 1973.

The revelation came from two different diplomats, a European and a member of the BRIC group, and was made separately to a US scholar and Asia Times Online.
Well, of course, it figures as much. The Saudis will do damn near literally anything to prevent anything resembling a true democratic uprising, including invading its neighbors. And not entirely without reason, from just about every standpoint -- the Saudi populace teems with young, unemployed, ultraconservative men, not exactly a cure for high gas prices.

And what of all that, anyway? Where in Obama's recent homilies to energy independence has the notion of conservation, of reducing not only consumption but waste, been seriously mentioned? The White House's own energy page pays scant lip service to the idea in its extensive back-patting laundry list, with a brief nod to "increase fuel efficiency and decrease greenhouse gas pollution from medium- and heavy-duty trucks for Model Years 2014-2018". Oh, okay. Well, now that we've got the when (several years down the road, per usual, so whatever claque of gutless poseurs has the reins then can simply eviscerate the measures, however modest), from what to what? Doesn't say, just a brief mention about how "trucks consume more than two million barrels of oil every day, and average 6.1 miles per gallon."

So the path to "energy independence" includes finding new and better ways of deepwater offshore drilling (which has worked out spectacularly in the Gulf of Mexico), and investing heavily in such low-EROEI techniques as shale oil (basically melting chunks of a mountain, and dealing with the hazardous waste) and buying tar-sands oil (basically steaming the oil out of enormous volumes of sand and soil, and dealing with the hazardous waste) from Canada.

None of this takes into account that these are not long-term methods for retrieval, that even beyond the environmental issues, there is the matter of physics and math. The oil is getting more and more difficult to get to, while demand just keeps increasing. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that the best way to stretch whatever supplies remain is to conserve. This used to not be a bad word, before marketers figured out that far too many 'murkins cannot help themselves when it comes to self-actualizing through their choice of vehicle.

I say this not as a hater of the internal combustion engine -- I have worked in the manufacturing and motorcycle industries in the past, and appreciate many makes of car for the works of functional art they truly are. There is a freedom and a vigor to the simple act of driving that is difficult to replicate in the workaday drudgery that comprises the majority of existence for the lower 90% of the Globalized Corporate Merchant Principalities of the Yew Ess Ayy.

But we are running out, and that pace will only continue to accelerate as supplies dwindle further and demand ramps up, and maybe someone in the decision-making class oughta stand up and murmur in the affirmative that it may not be the most intelligent idea to drive everywhere in a jacked-up Suburban like some strutting ofay asshole.

This doesn't automatically mean that the bombing of Libya is all about oil, unless of course it is. But even if it is not, one finds more often than not that blowback from foreign policy decisions (or lack of) frequently correlates with blowback from energy policies (or lack of). This is from a lack of coherence, of principle, of even a modicum of foresight and a minimum of discipline.

Shaw was, of course, devastatingly correct in opining that youth is wasted on the young,and that frivolous mentality is certainly writ large in this instance. It is not that living for today is necessarily bad, or that people should live quiet lives of deprivation any more than they already do. But when people live only for today, and collectively pretend that tomorrow will never come, and are shocked when it does show up and there are consequences to pay, it's kinda hard to feel sorry for them when they wonder why gas is going to be five bucks a gallon by Labor Day.

Update: Ahahaha. Of course, it figures. Even as we lob missiles at Qadafi, at $1M per, we're also bailing out his bank. I know I spent a great deal of the Cheney regime kvetching about their consistent incompetence, but sweet jeebus, these chumps give them a run for their stolen money at nearly every turn.

My Booky Wook

One certainly hopes "Pastor" Terry Jones is proud of himself. After all, it's not every day you can get innocent people killed with your idiot shenanigans; normally you have to be in a decision-making capacity in the federal government to accomplish that feat.

But Jones is no ordinary idiot -- in fact, perhaps inspired by his Yosemite Sam choice in facial hair, Jones has found a fairly innovative way to extend his sheer ridonkulosity:
Two weeks ago, with no advance notice, the burning was on again. The Quran was torched after a mock trial in which the book was found guilty of various transgressions.
Terry Jones howlds trile fer th' Caurt o' Jaybus.

Yes, a mock trial for a religious text. No word on whom "represented" the "defense", nor what, if any, transcript exists. This asshole's theatricality -- a clergyman who packs heat! -- knows no bounds. Straight outta the 12th century, y'all.

Of course, Jones figgers that the barbaric response simply proves his point. And he's not entirely wrong about the differences in response to fairly mundane events -- as corrupt and messed-up as Teh West and/or "Christendom" might be, there is simply no analog in the western world to the deadly riots that occur across Islamistan when someone draws a cartoon or burns some books.

But if we are results-oriented, this is not entirely relevant. The fact is that Jones is a cheap, sleazy provocateur, willing to put people's lives at risk for a stupid stunt. His intent was to antagonize, not to prove some epistemological point.

More interesting is that it hasn't seemed to occur to anyone that perhaps at least part of the reason behind the riots is the desire to let unwanted guests know that it is time to leave. In many ways Afghanistan is a debauched, sick culture, where a bunch of overcompensating child-rapists keep their society square in the dark ages by the systematic, violent repression of women.

Yes, America treats its women like second-class citizens, but Afghanistan treats them like hundredth-class citizens as a way of life. But the complicity of American companies in organized pedophilia -- not to mention American soldiers thrill-killing teenagers and old people, mutilating and desecrating corpses, acting like they're doing the world a goddamned favor by venting their frustrations on the weak and powerless -- brings us to that level. Whatever it is we think we're doing, it's not helping.

Now those are sensible reasons to riot -- except here, of course, where even the open gutting of the world's economy merely elicits more tweets on the comings and goings of assholes like Charlie Sheen or Donald Trump, rather than the immediate defenestration or guillotining of the perpetrators. But it's easier to oversimplify it as another instance of the wogs going batshit over a dumb book.

The decline of the empire continues apace, not only because of our institutional inability to know when to fold 'em, but our collective refusal to acknowledge plain facts right in front of us.