Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Republican Health Care Plan

This is Teh Awesome:

Oh, and to Max Baucus, Kent Conrad, Ben Nelson and the rest of the insurance lobbyist-worshiping Blue Dog whores in Congress: You can all seriously go eat a bowl of dicks. Because you might as well be siding with the Republicans on this debate right now. In fact, you pretty much are. Bastards. Fucking assholes.


The Angels clinched the American League West last night by beating the Rangers. A photo from the news wires shows them celebrating by soaking their late teammate Nick Adenhart's jersey with beer and champagne. Adenhart was killed early in the season when his car was hit by a drunk driver.

Am I the only one who sees the irony here, or am I making more of this than I should?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Protect Insurance Company Profits!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Back Surgery My Ass

I just got back last night from my favorite spot in the Eastern Sierra, where I had spent a little over a week out of the reach of telephones and the internetz and civilization in general, and boy, are my neural synapses tired. About the only communication with the outside world that I had while I was busy fishing, hiking and sitting around campfires were Giants baseball games on the radio at night and early edition newspapers purchased at the camp's general store every morning. It was through those papers that I learned about Jim Carroll, Patrick Swayze, Mary Travers and Henry Gibson all having died in the same week.

Jim Carroll?!? Fuck!! I thought he died years ago.

(Aside -- last time I was there, Tim Russert and a few other notable folks passed on, and if I was a celebrity, I'd start to get worried every time Mrs. G and I plan a camping trip.)

Anyway... it was in one of those early edition newspapers -- the Reno Gazette-Journal, I believe -- that I read last Friday or Saturday about the former Shitbag in Chief Vice-President, Dick Motherfucking Cheney, having recently undergone a surgical procedure that, according to the article, was supposed to alleviate some back problems that he's had for a while. Something about the brief item just didn't seem all that believable to me, though, and I'm not exactly sure why. Torquemada Dick Cheney getting routine back surgery just to take care of a little pain? The man who has made a career of talking tough out of the side of his mouth (albeit while taking five deferments to stay out of the Vietnam War, and never actually having experienced combat or any semblance of it in his fucking life -- unless you count the shooting-his-friend-in-the-face incident as some kind of battlefield dust-up), succumbing to a little oh-my-aching-back?

Naaah. I don't buy it.

What I think really happened is that a crack surgical team of Satan-appointed Josef Mengele clones opened Cheney up just wide enough to spoon in another heapin' helpin' of the Pure Unadulterated Evil that fills the hole in his chest where his heart should be; the glowing, radioactive malevolence that courses through his nearly-collapsed veins and keeps that malicious son of a bitch alive. The brimstone coursed through the intravenous tubes, the aroma of dozens of sacrificed virgin newborns wafted through the operating theater and the demonic host busied themselves recharging the batteries of wickedness inside the American Darth Vader, readying him for battle against the forces of liberalism and steadying him for more disingenuous appearances on Fox News. I think that's what really happened

You are free to disagree with this theory, of course, but lacking any concrete empirical evidence to the contrary, I remain convinced that my scenario is the true one.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Letterman On You Lie! Wilson

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

"You Lie!"

Amazing. Just fucking amazing. A Limbaugh Party Congressman, Joe Wilson (Asshole-SC, and no relation, I hope!), felt that it was so important to share his views on Obama's speech and Obama as a president that he shouted out, "You lie!" in a quiet moment just after Barack said that his health care bill would not cover illegal immigrants. The particulars of the speech aside -- and just for the record, it seemed to me like more weak sauce from the Man Who Would Be Bipartisan In Chief -- just imagine for a minute how this would have played out if a Democratic Congressman had shouted out something similar during one of Bush's speeches to Congress. Can you just hear the shrill screaming of the pundits on Fox News? Can you picture the volume of vitriol that would have been leveled at that Congressperson for defying decorum in such a rude manner? Every news outlet in America -- from the far, extreme right to the center right, which is as far as the spectrum goes in this country -- would have been calling for his head. The cacophony would have gone on for months, if not years. "He called the President a liar!" "How DARE he!" etc. etc. etc. Holy fucking shit, it would have been like throwing a truckload of raw red meat to a cage full of starving tigers.

Reportedly, Karl Rove on Fox News chuckled at the moment this evening.

How's that bipartisanship thing working out for you, Mr. President?

Bill Moyers Gets It Right

From today's

Mr. President, it's time to fight

No one's ever conquered Washington politics by saying "pretty please" to the guys trying to cut your throat

By Bill Moyers

Sep. 09, 2009 |

The editors of the Economist magazine say America's healthcare debate has become a touch delirious, with people accusing each other of being evil-mongers, dealers in death, and un-American.

Well, that's charitable.

I would say it's more deranged than delirious, and definitely not un-American.

Those crackpots on the right praying for Obama to die and be sent to hell -- they're the warp and woof of home-grown nuttiness. So is the creature from the Second Amendment who showed up at the President's rally armed to the teeth. He's certainly one of us. Red, white and blue kooks are as American as apple pie and conspiracy theories.

Bill Maher asked me on his show last week if America is still a great nation. I should have said it's the greatest show on earth. Forget what you learned in civics about the Founding Fathers — we're the children of Barnum and Bailey, our founding con men. Their freak show was the forerunner of today's talk radio.

Speaking of which: We've posted on our Web site an essay by the media scholar Henry Giroux. He describes the growing domination of hate radio as one of the crucial elements in a "culture of cruelty" increasingly marked by overt racism, hostility and disdain for others, coupled with a simmering threat of mob violence toward any political figure who believes healthcare reform is the most vital of safety nets, especially now that the central issue of life and politics is no longer about working to get ahead, but struggling simply to survive.

So here we are, wallowing in our dysfunction. Governed -- if you listen to the rabble rousers -- by a black nationalist from Kenya smuggled into the United States to kill Sarah Palin's baby. And yes, I could almost buy their belief that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, only I think he shipped them to Washington, where they've been recycled as lobbyists and trained in the alchemy of money laundering, which turns an old-fashioned bribe into a First Amendment right.

Only in a fantasy capital like Washington could Sunday morning talk shows become the high church of conventional wisdom, with partisan shills treated as holy men whose gospel of prosperity always seems to boil down to lower taxes for the rich.

Poor Obama. He came to town preaching the religion of nice. But every time he bows politely, the harder the Republicans kick him.

No one's ever conquered Washington politics by constantly saying "pretty please" to the guys trying to cut your throat.

Let's get on with it, Mr. President. We're up the proverbial creek with spaghetti as our paddle. This healthcare thing could have been the crossing of the Delaware, the turning point in the next American Revolution -- the moment we put the mercenaries to rout, as Gen. Washington did the Hessians at Trenton. We could have stamped our victory "Made in the USA." We could have said to the world, "Look what we did!" And we could have turned to each other and said, "Thank you."

As it is, we're about to get healthcare reform that measures human beings only in corporate terms of a cost-benefit analysis. I mean, this is topsy-turvy -- we should be treating health as a condition, not a commodity.

As we speak, Pfizer, the world's largest drug maker, has been fined a record $2.3 billion as a civil and criminal -- yes, that's criminal, as in fraud -- penalty for promoting prescription drugs with the subtlety of the Russian mafia. It's the fourth time in a decade Pfizer's been called on the carpet. And these are the people into whose tender mercies Congress and the White House would deliver us?

Come on, Mr. President. Show us America is more than a circus or a market. Remind us of our greatness as a democracy. When you speak to Congress next week, just come out and say it. We thought we heard you say during the campaign last year that you want a government-run insurance plan alongside private insurance -- mostly premium-based, with subsidies for low-and-moderate income people. Open to all individuals and employees who want to join and with everyone free to choose the doctors we want. We thought you said Uncle Sam would sign on as our tough, cost-minded negotiator standing up to the cartel of drug and insurance companies and Wall Street investors whose only interest is a company's share price and profits.

Here's a suggestion, Mr. President: Ask Josh Marshall to draft your speech. Josh is the founder of the Web site He's a journalist and historian, not a politician. He doesn't split things down the middle and call it a victory for the masses. He's offered the simplest and most accurate description yet of a public insurance plan -- one that essentially asks people: Would you like the option -- the voluntary option -- of buying into Medicare before you're 65? Check it out, Mr. President.

This healthcare thing is make or break for your leadership, but for us, it's life and death. No more Mr. Nice Guy, Mr. President. We need a fighter.

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