When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do? -- John Maynard Keynes

Thursday, October 31, 2013

US Government is its own worst enemy

You have to hand it to Obama and his administration -- their ineptness leaves one breathless -- first they come down so hard on any and all whistleblowers (and target any member of the media who may be talking to whistleblowers uncovering US government misconduct) that the chilling effect produces (surprise!) a Snowden -- who changes the rules of the game -- rather than play by the US government rules and try to reform a corrupt administration from inside, he takes EVERYTHING and flees beyond the reach of Obama and his gang. Now ALL the information Obama and his administration wanted so badly to keep secret, including illegal and unconstitutional acts, are coming out, one by one, in media all over the world. Thanks to the NSA, Obama and his administration, and Bush before him, and their ilk, the reputation of the US in the world is in the toilet. So what do Obama's guys do? Why they take out their anger and vengeance against a small businessman named Levison and destroy his law-abiding company. What Justice?

ACLU: Lavabit 'fatally undermined' by US request for encryption keys | World news | theguardian.com: "ACLU lawyer Catherine Crump said the government's "unreasonably burdensome" demands "fundamentally destroyed the company as a whole". "Lavabit's business was predicated on offering a secure email service, and no company could possible tell its clients that it offers a secure service if its keys have been handed over to the government," Crump said. Lavabit closed its service in August after the US authorities demanded he hand over the encryption keys for its entire service – a move Levison said would have compromised the personal details of his 40,000 clients. Levison had previously offered the FBI access to the account that is believed to have been used by Snowden. The name of the FBI's target is redacted in court documents, and Levison is gagged by a court order from commenting."

One could call the actions of Obama's administration thuggish, moronic, short-sighted, and clumsy, but hardly effective. In the end, the might and power of a Goliath, has again been defeated by a David. Corrupt power never learns. If three years ago you had asked any of America's enemies for a strategy to diminish US influence and power in the world, none of them could have come up with the events of this year--the US government has been its own worst enemy, thanks to the policies of the NSA, Obama, and Obama's DOJ. They have no one to blame but themselves.

But I am optimistic. Somewhere in the future, the US will have wiser leadership, and a better government. That leadership and government will understand you want and need a leaky government in a democracy. That's how truth comes out, and how you stem the rot and corruption and excesses that are otherwise inevitable in all governments.


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Obama continued and expanded Bush-Cheney abuses

"The Obama administration offers platitudes about security and vague talk of inconclusive inquiries." -- New York Times editorial (source at link below)

And in many cases, Obama expanded the abuses far beyond what even Bush or Cheney could have imagined -- read the full article at the link below (excerpt follows) --

The White House on Spying - NYTimes.com: " . . . That Chancellor Merkel’s cellphone conversations could fall under that umbrella is an outgrowth of the post-9/11 decision by President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney that everyone is the enemy, and that anyone’s rights may be degraded in the name of national security. That led to Abu Ghraib, torture at the secret C.I.A. prisons, warrantless wiretapping of American citizens, grave harm to international relations, and the dragnet approach to surveillance revealed by the Snowden leaks."


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Clueless President

Obama "Unaware"  -- willful ignorance is a sign of incompetence --

Press secretary Jay Carney was reluctant to engage Monday on whether the president has knowingly been left uninformed on key issues. Pressed by a reporter who noted that some Republicans have been critical of Obama for claiming advance ignorance, Carney eventually dismissed the question . . . Indeed, the Republican National Committee on Monday called Obama the “bystander president.” “Obama didn’t know,” spokeswoman Kirsten Kukowski said in an email sent to reporters soon after Carney’s exchange. “Last week, Obama wasn’t told how bad the ObamaCare website glitches were. Today, he didn’t know about the NSA spying on the German chancellor. Will he ever take responsibility for — let alone become aware of — how he’s running his government?(source Politico). 

"Obama Unaware as U.S. Spied on World Leaders: Officials" - WSJ.com -- that was the headline in the Wall Street Journal (you can read the story at the link above) as the White House began its "spin" to distance Obama from his own NSA and the revelations of its spying on the personal phone calls of Germany's elected Chancellor and the leaders of 34 other nations. Oh well, just add this to the pile of things Obama "didn't know anything about"--Obamacare website mess, IRS malfeasance, GSA partying, Benghazi, Fast and Furious--the list goes on and on (you can google any of the above if any don't ring a bell with you). The point is, any leader as ignorant, as apparently Obama is, of the workings of an enterprise (in this case the Executive Branch of the US government) he or she is responsible for, and supposed to be managing and leading, should be fired for incompetence. He is the Commander in Chief, he is supposed to know, and if he doesn't know he needs to fire everyone who is keeping him uninformed. Willful ignorance is not a strategy for competent management and leadership in any organization.

What a far way we have come from Harry Truman's "the buck stops here." In Obama's White House it's all about "deniability" so Obama "can't be blamed"--poor thing, he didn't know, therefore he is NOT responsible!

The problem is, when you are President of the United States, you are responsible, by definition. It is way past time for the Obama White House to quit the spin and running for re-election and start the hard task of real governance and leadership. Otherwise, please, for the sake of the nation, do as Harry Truman said, if you can't stand the heat, get out of kitchen.


Monday, October 28, 2013

SXSW, rotten culture, contempt, condescension, privilege

Silverman nails it -- read full article at link below (excerpt follows) --

Networking into the Abyss | Jacob Silverman | The Baffler: " . . . . SXSWers were often friendly and solicitous—a style of self-presentation entirely consistent with the festival’s networking ethos. But these aren’t the encounters that stick. And the attitudes reflected above—the condescension and privilege, the irrational self-belief and contempt for opposing views—indicate something wrong at the heart of the tech industry’s preeminent festival of ideas. More broadly, they’re part of a rotten culture that garishly celebrates itself while remaining divorced from the concerns of its customers. During SXSW, Austin becomes a money-soaked mélange of hyper-consumerism and techno-utopianism. In the bazaar of terminally bad ideas—amid the panels on DJ epistemology, the hackathons, and the Spotify parties . . . " (emphasis added)


Sunday, October 27, 2013

What were Ted Cruz and the Tea Party Thinking?

I like Ted Cruz, I really do, and I think he and his wife are truly impressive.  But I don't get, and never will, what the heck he and his compatriots in the House were trying to do with the shutdown over Obamacare (and I said so at the time), but I see Ted is now trying to justify the stance he took--

Unabashed Cruz in Iowa defends self on ObamaCare fight, against GOP establishment | Fox News: ""One of the things we accomplished in the fight over ObamaCare is we elevated the national debate over what a disaster, what a train wreck, how much ObamaCare is hurting millions of Americans across this country," Cruz said at the Iowa GOP's annual fundraising dinner in Des Moines. “Senate Republicans didn't stand together. Had we stuck together, the outcome might be very different. The House does now, but I'm confident that the U.S. senate will in time listen to the American people.”"

Problem is, Ted and his House compatriots were trying to stop a train wreck that was, and is, to their political advantage to let happen, and was going to happen anyway (they had no hope of either stopping or delaying it at the time). Obamacare, a term I prefer over "Affordable Care Act" since the program is far from "affordable" for most Americans and is an unmitigated disaster on controlling health care costs, is a slow-moving train wreck that will hang most Democrats come November, 2014. So Ted, for now, just shut up. I don't think even you have any idea how bad this thing is going to be--let it come to full fruition. Hold your fire, you don't need to tell anyone how bad Obamacare will be, and how the Democrats really stuck it to most Americans with this Obamamess. When the time is right, they will know, they won't need to be told.


Friday, October 25, 2013

Edward Snowden, No Regrets (video)

Edward Snowden's Father Arrives in Moscow
Fugitive former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden's father arrived in Moscow to a media maelstrom last Thursday, and said he believed his son is prepared to remain in Russia for the long haul with no intention of returning to the U.S. Lukas Alpert reports (source: Wall Street Journal)

Edward Snowden Says He Has No Regrets
Fugitive Intelligence Contractor is Satisfied his Actions Have Had an Impact, says former CIA agent and supporter. - MOSCOW—Fugitive former intelligence operative Edward Snowden told supporters at a secret dinner this week that he doesn't regret leaking details of classified U.S. surveillance programs, despite having to live his life on the run because he is satisfied his actions have had an impact, a person present at the dinner said. Mr. Snowden told four former U.S. government agents-turned-whistleblowers, who traveled to Moscow to give him an award, that he was settling into his new life in Russia and was happy to have avoided the fate experienced by others who have exposed government secrets.



Thursday, October 24, 2013

A Woman Blogger, the NSA, US Senate, Real Journalists

When the pathetic US Senate (that includes you Senator Feinstein) tries to exclude bloggers from any definition of journalists, think of the following --

The Woman Who Knows the NSA’s Secrets - Newsweek: "Long before Edward Snowden leaked documents showing that the government was collecting every American’s phone records, Marcy Wheeler knew something fishy was going on. She was one of just a handful of people who in 2009 suspected that the government was using the USA Patriot Act to collect Americans’ personal records in bulk. On June 5, 2013, Snowden proved her right. You’ve probably never heard of Wheeler, a Michigan blogger who plies her trade far away from the closed world of Washington, D.C., but her work enables journalists, lawyers, advocates and experts to unmask the government’s secret spying apparatus." (read more at the links above)

By the way, what idiot state elected Feinstein to the US Senate? Don't they have ANYONE better qualified and of sound mind to be a US Senator?


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

For the NSA the worst is yet to come, accountability

For years, the intelligence services of the US government have gotten away with murder -- literally and figuratively -- as well as gross incompetence and dismal failure after failure. And yet, thanks to non-existent oversight by either the Congress or the President du jour (Bush, Obama), and cloaked in secrecy including their own in-house rubber-stamp secret Courts, the NSA (and other agencies) have not been held to account for the billions wasted, misspent, and other gross incompetence. But now with the Snowden affair, after all those revelations (of which, reportedly, many more are to come), the worst is still yet to come -- someone in Congress (forget about the Obama White House -- they don't want to know, deniability is their on-going strategy for management of the Executive branch of the US government from GSA to IRS to Benghazi) is going to ask and demand to know how the National Security Agency allowed a low-level contract employee to walk off with all of the NSA's top secret documents? Reportedly, Snowden spent months, while on the payroll of NSA contractors, downloading via USB thumb drives, any and all documents of his choice -- and walked out of the building, no questions asked! What kind of security is that? Just because someone has a top secret clearance doesn't mean they won't steal your stuff dummies! The MOST serious threats to security are ALWAYS from the inside. Just how stupid or naive are the US intelligence services?

But I guess when one gets billions to spend, with no accountability or transparency or oversight, you can get pretty sloppy, or lazy, or incompetent. And yet these clowns in Washington think they should be telling the rest of the country how to manage their security? LOL!

One would be much better off going to Las Vegas and learning how the casinos manage security -- that's one place you will find competent professionalism in the security field.


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Incompetent Obama Administration Does It Again, ObamaCare Website Disaster (MSNBC video)

MSNBC: Obama Admin Showcased ObamaCare Website Before Rollout, Expressed Confidence It Would Work - Scarborough: Administration Was "Extraordinarily Confident" Obamacare Website Would Work | RealClearPolitics: "Joe Scarborough and Chuck Todd remember press briefings at which the Obama administration "made it seem that they knew all the potential problems" that healthcare.gov might experience."

Obama Administration "Extraordinarly Confident" Obamacare Website Would Work -- LOL! Doesn't ANYONE in the Washington media understand how inept and incompetent the "Obama Administration" really is? LOL!

Before this is all over, Obama may be begging Ted Cruz to get the Senate and House to repeal this mess.


Monday, October 21, 2013

The Real Bad News No One (in media or government) Will Tell You

"The belief that . . . debt can be dealt with in an imaginary future (that never seems to arrive) is the foundation upon which the President can chastise the Republicans as irresponsible suicide bombers. Using this logic, he can argue (with a straight face) that borrowing is the equivalent of paying. That the President can make this delusional argument is not so surprising (no lie too great for the typical politician to attempt). What is alarming is that the media and the public have swallowed it so willingly." (source infra)

RealClearMarkets - Debt Ceiling Delusions: "Democrats had warned that the $85 billion in sequestration cuts slated for fiscal year 2013 (about 2% of the Federal budget) would be sufficient to bring on economic Armageddon. But guess what? We survived. Recently, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid continued with such rhetoric by declaring that there are no more cuts to be found anywhere in the $3.8 Trillion dollar federal budget. (Apparently he missed last week's 60 Minutes piece on the spreading epidemic of federal disability fraud.) We have to acknowledge what even the Republicans haven't fully grasped. We are in such a deep debt hole that there is no solution that does not involve serious economic pain . . ." (read more at link above)

Realistically, there are only two ways out of our mess in the US (excluding default and other unthinkable options): a) real economic growth at a rate far in excess of the anemic Obama recovery thus far, which, unfortunately, is highly improbable for the foreseeable future; OR b) massive destruction of the value of the US dollar through inflation or paying off the massive indebtedness with freshly printed money at some point in the future--hopefully after I am dead.

In the meantime, how do we delay the day of reckoning?  Because delay is about the best we can hope to do for the foreseeable future with the current crop of idiots and clowns in Washington. Over time, we must rein in government spending including downsizing our bloated military-industrial complex, our bloated prison-industrial complex, our bloated redundant federal programs and bureaucracy, reform of entitlements, comprehensive tax reform, and the list goes on -- but do you see ANY of that happening? Not a chance with the current regime.


Sunday, October 20, 2013

US Government vs the American People in the Bush-Obama era

Chomsky says all superpowers feel exceptional, inflate security myth --

Chomsky to RT: All superpowers feel exceptional, inflate security myth for ‘frightened population’ — RT Op-Edge: "One is that when a government or others related to it claim security, it literally carries no information. . . . No matter what any state does, no matter how awful, it’s going to say it’s necessary for security . . . we have a huge record of declassified documents going way back that were classified for security reasons but are now available, a huge array of them, we can study them and ask to what extent was security relevant. I’ve done a lot of work on this and others can do it too and there’s a conclusion security is almost always relevant but it's security of the government from its own population. That’s the security concern." (read more at link above)

In other words, everything is "classified" -- that way they (the American people) can not stop us from doing the awful things they would try to stop us from doing. That's what Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden (and other heroic patriots) saw and fought against.


Saturday, October 19, 2013

New York Times Discovers Its Own Confirmation Bias

Better Late Than Never --

NYT Discovers Confirmation Bias | The Big Picture: "“Perhaps something more complicated than sketching out voting districts is at play. The polarized political map is now accompanied by a media ecosystem that is equally gerrymandered into districts of self-reinforcing discourse.” From the better-late-than-never files: I want to direct your attention to an article from David Carr, titled It’s Not Just Political Districts. Our News Is Gerrymandered, Too. That’s where the above quote came from. The bad news is that we learn that the media reporter for one of the more important American newspapers is only now discovering both confirmation bias and the Balkanization of the press. The good news? Well, let’s consider this a form of progress. . . ."

For those unfamiliar with the term, go to the link: confirmation bias.


Friday, October 18, 2013

NSA, What Is The ROI?

That's the question no one in Washington wants asked, much less answered. The clear answer is there is no positive ROI (that's return on investment for those who don't know) on the NSA and its nefarious activities.

N.S.A. Gathers Data on Social Connections of U.S. Citizens - NYTimes.com -- From a comment to the foregoing NY Times article -- "The NSA may be collecting everything happening on Earth, but they're certainly not preventing terrorism. For example, the Times Square bomber was discovered by a nearby street vendors. The shoe bomber was discovered and stopped by passengers on the plane -- despite the fact that his father pre-warned our 'intelligence' community that his son was a terrorist threat. American intelligence is clearly an oxymoron. Collecting everything does nothing more than create a larger haystack for the NSA morons to comb through. This is not rocket science, eh? Stop the NSA. What they're doing is not only a waste of time and money. It's destroying the U.S. constitution."

And of course, God forbid anyone asks about ROI for other US government programs (and that includes tax expenditures and other welfare for big corporations and fat cats). Here's the shocking truth that no one in Washington wants to admit -- from Obama to Republicans and Democrats, bureaucrats, K Street lawyers and lobbyists -- we don't need MORE of hardly anything -- legislation, funding, programs, etc., we need LESS. That's the way forward out of the present mess -- simplify and streamline government, government programs, laws and regulations.  That is a sea change, and many in the current system will not be able to comprehend, much less adapt to the new paradigm -- some because it threatens their power, their turf, their bureaucracy, or their income. Who is going to lead the way forward? Do we have ANY leaders?


Thursday, October 17, 2013

Shutdown ended, debt default averted, but not for long

Dysfunctional government --

Congress agrees -- for now -- to end shutdown, avert debt default - CNN.com: "...The debt cushion now extends through February 7, with current spending levels being authorized through January 15. That means a few months of breathing room, but little more. After all, the bill doesn't address many of the contentious and complicated issues -- from changes to entitlement programs to tax reform -- that continue to divide Democrats and Republicans. "We think that we'll be back here in January debating the same issues," John Chambers, managing director of Standard and Poor's rating service, told CNN on Wednesday night "... This is, I fear, a permanent feature of our budgetary process."..."



Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Snowden: Mass Surveillance Is a Threat (Video)

Snowden Speaks Again: Mass Surveillance Is a Threat: Video - Bloomberg: "Oct. 14 (Bloomberg) -- For the first time since June, Edward Snowden spoke about his National Security Agency leaks. Six new clips, released by WikiLeaks Saturday on YouTube, show a speech Snowden gave Thursday at a small gathering where he received the Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence. (Source: Bloomberg)"


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Obama to Congress: My Way or the Highway (video)

Forbes: Preposterous Obama Acts as Dictator: Video - Bloomberg: "Oct. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Forbes Media Chairman and Editor-In-Chief Steve Forbes discusses the U.S. government shutdown and debt ceiling negotiations on Bloomberg Television's "Bloomberg Surveillance." (Source: Bloomberg)"

Obama says he "won the election." He thinks he was elected Dictator. It's sad you have to tell a Harvard Law grad (and supposed Constitutional Law professor) this -- but the Constitution doesn't work that way. But remember what Bill Clinton said, Barack Obama is incompetent, an amateur.


Monday, October 14, 2013

Opt Out Of Google Plan to Sell Users Endorsements

Unless you want to be exploited by Google like Facebook exploits its users, you better opt out of Google's Plan to Sell Users' Endorsements -- Google has announced an update to its terms of service that allows Google to include adult users' names, photos and comments in ads shown across the Web, based on ratings, reviews and posts they have made on Google Plus and other websites, for example, if a user follows a business on Google Plus or gives an album four stars on the Google Play music service, that person’s name, photo and endorsement could show up in ads for that business or album. You can opt out of being included in the new endorsements (Google says people under the age of 18 will automatically be excluded)--

Terms of Service update – Policies & Principles – Google: "Terms of Service update - October 11, 2013 - We are updating the Google Terms of Service. The new Terms will go live on November 11, 2013 and you can read them here.
Because many of you are allergic to legalese, here’s a plain English summary for your convenience.
We’ve made three changes:
First, clarifying how your Profile name and photo might appear in Google products (including in reviews, advertising and other commercial contexts). You can control whether your image and name appear in ads via the Shared Endorsements setting. . . . ."

To opt out, go to that link (scroll to the bottom of page), uncheck the box, then click "Save." That's it.


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Greenwald vs New York Times

Call it new media versus old media, or whatever, Greenwald is bringing the old hag down. (Hey New York Times -- I guess you didn't get the memo -- this is not a good time to be a US Government shill.)


Saturday, October 12, 2013

Why Everyone (including the Government) Is Stupid

The following applies to everything and everyone . . .

15 Biases That Make You Do Dumb Things With Your Money: ". . . . Daniel Kahneman, who won the Nobel Prize for his work studying cognitive psychology, once said, "I never felt I was studying the stupidity of mankind in the third person. I always felt I was studying my own mistakes." When you realize you are as biased as everyone else, you've won the game."

15 Biases That Make You A Dumb Investor | The Big Picture: "From Morgan Housel, here are several cognitive biases that cause you to do dumb things with your money. Be sure to check out the entire article. 15 Biases That Make You Do Dumb Things With Your Money:
1. Normalcy bias
2. Dunning-Kruger effect
3. Attentional bias
4. Bandwagon effect
5. Impact bias
6. Frequency illusion
7. Clustering illusion
8. Status quo bias
9. Belief bias
10. Curse of knowledge
11. Gambler’s fallacy
12. Extreme discounting
13. Ludic fallacy
14. Restraint bias
15. Bias bias . . . " (read more at links above)


Friday, October 11, 2013

NSA, a privacy-violating mess, Government out-of-control

Can the FISC Fix the N.S.A.? Not Alone. : The New Yorker: " . . . What does the metadata program look like in opinions expected to be secret? A 2009 FISC order and other documents declassified last week—the A.C.L.U. and Electronic Freedom Foundation had filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit to get them—described “compliance incidents,” which was a way of saying that the manner in which the N.S.A. ran certain programs was a privacy-violating mess. It had used thousands of telephone numbers that it had no good reason to connect to terrorism to run queries with the metadata, and then explained the violation in a way that, as Judge Reggie Walton wrote, “strains credulity,” while “repeatedly submitting inaccurate descriptions” of what it was doing. Supposedly, those particular problems have been fixed. A senior intelligence official, briefing reporters about the documents, presented this chapter, according to the Times, as a series of mistakes: “There was nobody at N.S.A. who really had a full understanding of how the program was operating at the time.” So who does now?"

Nobody fully understood (even inside the NSA!) what the NSA was doing. Nobody was in charge. A secret Court was befuddled. A NSA out of control. Congressional oversight? LOL. And remember Obama's defense of the NSA when these revelations came to light? That's the kind of inept and incompetent government, unfortunately, we have in the US at present.


Thursday, October 10, 2013

Obama, America, banana republic, deadbeat nation

Obama’s “I Am Not a Crook” Moment | Washington's Blog: " . . . What Lakoff and other political psychologists explain is that what most Americans – and people all over the world – will hear is:

America is a banana republic, a deadbeat nation, which can’t pay its bills.

Of course, there is some basis for accusing the U.S. of becoming a banana republic … a deadbeat which can’t pay its bills. But the focus of this post is on Obama’s … invoking the exact image which he is trying to avoid. Obama has failed to learn the most basic concept from the psychology of politics. . . ." (read more at links above)


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

NSA Data Center Meltdown -- Snowden?

NSA Investigators Stumped by What's Causing Power Surges That Destroy Equipment -- 

Meltdowns Hobble NSA Data Center - WSJ.com: "Chronic electrical surges at the massive new data-storage facility central to the National Security Agency's spying operation have destroyed hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of machinery and delayed the center's opening for a year, according to project documents and current and former officials. There have been 10 meltdowns in the past 13 months that have prevented the NSA from using computers at its new Utah data-storage center, slated to be the spy agency's largest, according to project documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. One project official described the electrical troubles—so-called arc fault failures—as "a flash of lightning inside a 2-foot box." These failures create fiery explosions, melt metal and cause circuits to fail, the official said." (read more at link above and the comment at: Meltdowns Hobble NSA Data Center ("NSA  goons on power trips") - WSJ.com )


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Bernanke's Failures, Unemployment, The Value of Money (US)

Or is the Fed destroying the value of the US dollar in trying to "boost employment"?

Money — the crisis Washington’s ignoring | New York Post: "And the average sale price of a new home rose 4.2 percent, but the value fell a staggering 54 percent to 257 ounces of gold. Absent a dramatic turn of events, Bernanke will leave his successor with a dollar that is less valuable by far than any dollar ever left by any Fed chairman. In percentage terms, the plunge in the dollar’s value on Bernanke’s watch is the second most dramatic in history. The cover for him to do this is a 1978 law called Humphrey-Hawkins, which gives the Fed the job not only of watching prices but of boosting employment. How has that worked out? The Fed has been ballooning its balance sheet by billions — “not literally” printing money, Bernanke quipped before Congress; it’s now done electronically — and the unemployment rate is still stuck above 7 percent."

As usual, the culprit is legislation passed by Congress and signed by the President -- the dual mandate required by legislation known as Humphrey-Hawkins. At some point we really need a moratorium on any new legislation. Congress and the Executive Branch (that's you Obama) should be repealing legislation, amending legislation by rewriting it to be more streamlined, simple, and easy to execute and follow, and stop excluding government (including Congress) from ANY legislation!


Monday, October 7, 2013

GOP needs to call out Obama on his government shutdown idiocy

Not only may GOP strategy be flawed, they sure don't know how to point out the obvious idiocy at work in the Obama administration --

Feds Try to Close the OCEAN Because of Shutdown: "Just before the weekend, the National Park Service informed charter boat captains in Florida that the Florida Bay was "closed" due to the shutdown. Until government funding is restored, the fishing boats are prohibited from taking anglers into 1,100 square-miles of open ocean. Fishing is also prohibited at Biscayne National Park during the shutdown. The Park Service will also have rangers on duty to police the ban. Of access to an ocean. The government will probably use more personnel and spend more resources to attempt to close the ocean, than it would in its normal course of business. This is governing by temper-tantrum. It is on par with the government's ham-fisted attempts to close the DC WWII Memorial, an open-air public monument that is normally accessible 24 hours a day. . . . Florida Bay is the ocean. How, pray tell, do you "close" 1,100 square miles of ocean? Why would one even need to do so? Apparently, according to an anonymous Park Service ranger, “We’ve been told to make life as difficult for people as we can. It’s disgusting.”. . . " (read more at links above)

Disgusting, idiotic, Obama.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Was deadly force necessary in DC? No, but does it matter anymore?

Why was an unarmed woman (with infant in her car) publicly executed by DC police and federal agents on a public street in DC last week? Was she a terrorist? No. Was she a real (vs perceived) threat to anyone? Hardly -- she had slightly damaged her own car and others in fleeing from men who had surrounded her car with guns aimed at her and who subsequently fired multiple shots at her. We do not know what was going through this poor woman's mind (reportedly she had a history of mental illness) but I know what I saw -- DC and federal officers panicked and overreacting, misreporting "shots fired" on police airwaves (putting the Capitol building in a complete paranoid shutdown state) -- nobody had a gun except the police and federal agents, no one used a gun except the police and federal agents, but by their paranoid, unprofessional conduct, not only was an unarmed woman unnecessarily shot and killed, the public at large was in much greater danger from the gunshots fired by the police and federal agents than by any "threat" posed by this apparently delusional woman --

Was deadly force necessary in Capitol shooting?: " . . . Michael Lyman, a former criminal investigator who has studied use-of-force guidelines for police, said the woman's inability to penetrate barriers around the White House downgraded the situation from a national security concern to an "old-fashioned pursuit." From that point on, he said, officers should have tried to use other means to stop the car. "Shooting at a moving vehicle is against all nationally recognized protocols," said Lyman, a criminal justice professor at Columbia College of Missouri. Lyman said the possibility of accidentally striking innocent bystanders is just too high when trying to shoot at a moving car. "Cops get rattled," he said. "And when they get rattled, police don't always shoot straight.". . ."

Nor do "rattled cops" think straight.

Was police shooting of unarmed woman outside Capitol justified? - Investigations: "Law enforcement officials who briefed NBC News on the case said that officers fired a total of 26 rounds at the driver, 34-year-old Miriam Carey of Stamford, Conn., who never left her vehicle."

But the police executioners just mirror-imaged the Washington mindset of the Bush-Obama era -- paranoid, overreacting, overreaching, big-brother government police state. The police and federal agents psyched themselves into thinking a threat existed which did not. Perception over reality.

Was it really necessary to gun down, in Chicago gang-banging style, an unarmed woman in her car with an infant child last week in DC? No, but does it matter anymore in America?


Saturday, October 5, 2013

End of US Imperium

Imperium defined by Google: absolute power -"it was the high noon of the imperium, an age when there was something empowering about being an American"

The End of U.S. Imperium—Finally! - The Daily Beast: "....After having rained napalm, white phosphorous, bunker busters, drone missiles, and the most violent machinery of conventional warfare ever assembled upon millions of innocent Vietnamese, Cambodians, Serbs, Somalis, Iraqis, Afghans, Pakistanis, Yemeni, Libyans, and countless more, Washington now presupposes to be in the moral-sanctions business? That’s downright farcical. Nevertheless, by declaring himself the world’s spanker in chief, President Obama has unwittingly precipitated the mother of all clarifying moments...."


Friday, October 4, 2013

One Big Trader Lost Millions Betting on Romney

One Big Trader Lost Millions Betting on Romney, Study Finds - Washington Wire - WSJ: "A new academic paper digging into presidential betting in the final weeks of the 2012 election finds that a single trader lost between $4 million and $7 million placing a flurry of Intrade bets on Mitt Romney—perhaps to make the Republican nominee’s chance of victory appear brighter."

I think it was Mitt betting on himself -- remember him offering Governor Perry a $10,000 friendly wager in the GOP Primary debates, and Perry recoiling in shock? LOL! No wonder Romney was "in shock" election night -- it wasn't the election, it was the money he lost!


Thursday, October 3, 2013

Why the New York Times is wrong about a jobs recovery

Not only the New York Times, but most of mainstream media in general -- what's the problem? The BLS model is bad, it only goes back 3 years, therefore the DATA is bad upon which its ASSUMPTIONS are based: "The BLS only looks at the past 3 years to figure out what a "typical" September (or October or November, etc.) looks like. So, if there's, say, a once-in-three-generations financial crisis in the fall, it could throw off the seasonal adjustments for quite awhile. Which is, of course, exactly what happened. The BLS's model didn't know about Lehman. It only knew about the calendar. So it saw all the layoffs in late 2008 and early 2009, and interpreted them the only way it knew how: as seasonality, not a shadow banking run. And that messed things up for years. Because the BLS's model thought the job losses from the financial crisis were just from winter, it thought those kind of job losses would happen every winter.... Just how bad are the data? Well, keep in mind that the jobs report's margin of error is supposed to be about 90,000. But these post-crisis seasonal errors have almost doubled it to about 170,000. That's right: the jobs report's real margin of error has been about as big as the average jobs report itself the past few years.... (source infra) 

That's right--when you read in the New York Times (based on a BLS report) that 170,000 jobs were created last month, the ACTUAL figure could be -0-. Garbage in, garbage out.

How Bad Data Warped Everything We Thought We Knew About the Jobs Recovery - Matthew O'Brien - The Atlantic: "Bottom line: Almost six and a half years (mid 2007) ago two million more people were working than are employed today. That's an extremely dismal record " (READ more at link above)


Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Plutocrats, Persecution, Sociopaths

The 2 biggest problems in the US: 1) inept, incompetent "Big Brother" government; 2)  The uber rich who benefit the most from that government (tax breaks, big contracts, and other special favors), they own the "Big Brother" government through K Street lobbyists, law firms, and political contributions -- Obama and Congress are just their "boys" -- and yes, Krugman (read article at link below) is right, they are sociopathic:

Plutocrats Feeling Persecuted - NYTimes.com: "Robert Benmosche, the chief executive of the American International Group, said something stupid the other day. And we should be glad, because his comments help highlight an important but rarely discussed cost of extreme income inequality — namely, the rise of a small but powerful group of what can only be called sociopaths. . . . Also, notice what both men were defending: namely, their privileges. Mr. Schwarzman was outraged at the notion that he might be required to pay taxes just like the little people; Mr. Benmosche was, in effect, declaring that A.I.G. was entitled to public bailouts and that its executives shouldn’t be expected to make any sacrifice in return. . . ." (read more at link above)


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

NSA Abuse and Incompetence, Time To Shut It Down

If the idiots and clowns running the NSA were half as smart and competent as they think they are, Snowden would have never been able to spend months downloading top secret documents right under their noses, and NSA employees wouldn't be able to cyberstalk ex-girlfriends and otherwise abuse NSA policies --

630WPRO.COM | The Voice of Rhode Island - NSA Employees Cyber-Stalked Crushes [From ABC News]: " . . . The incidents, 12 in total and most romantic in nature, were revealed in response to a request from Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, who asked last month that the NSA provide more information on “the intentional and willful misuse of surveillance authorities by NSA employees.” For months major news organizations have reported never-before-seen details of the NSA’s incredible surveillance powers -- both foreign and domestic -- based on a trove of intelligence documents allegedly stolen by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. Snowden, charged with espionage-related crimes in the U.S., is currently living in Russia on temporary asylum. . . ."

It is past time to shut down the NSA and transfer that part of NSA that has a mission-critical security role, to the CIA or some other less inept intelligence agency.


The Big Picture

Financial Crisis - The Telegraph

JohnTheCrowd.com | The Sailing Website

Craig Newmark - craigconnects