A pleasure pen, meant for them

“Take me out to the ball game, take me out with the crowd …

“He wants a carton of Merits and some Jiffy Pop, and he doesn’t want to have to put his shirt on to get them. You know why? Because this is America.”

“For all the talk about McCarthyism in politics, we don’t usually come across literal examples.”

What’s going on here is lying. It’s lying about fellow human beings. And it’s lying to oneself.”

There is no need to apologize for who you are or for voicing an opinion on something you have a problem with.”

“We are described and detailed, our faces and bodies analyzed and picked apart, our worth ascertained and ascribed based on the reduction of personhood to simple physical objectification.”

“He told the audience that the United States has the best health care system in the world, before he was literally laughed at by several attendees.”

“For every federal income-tax dollar you pay, 0.59 cents goes to welfare.” (Not 59 cents, but about 3/5 of one penny.)

Reality Check on Who Pays Taxes

“The main trouble with reading Revelation as people of wealth, status and privilege is that we don’t have much of a problem with Babylon. We’re doing quite well in Babylon, thank you very much.”

This post contains photos of a 141 year old body that’s been dead over 88 years.”

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  • Lori

    “Fuck you fucks! We are a Tolerant Nation!”

    That. That right there is a perfect example of what I love most about the utter weirdness that is the US.

  • Thanks for the link love.  Here’s a picture of Lenin cake as an expression of my gratitude.  

  • Ian needs a nickname

    between 78 and 81 members of the “Democrat Party” in Congress are “members of the Communist Party.” Fantasizing that Members of Congress are Communists makes some sense to me as demonization, but imagining that some are marginal Communists is intriguingly odd.  I’m very curious about those three West is unsure about (81-78).  What are they supposed to be, Maoists?  Marxist-Leninist fans of Trotsky?  

  • Magic_Cracker
  • From the link: “He told the audience that the United States has the best health care system in the world, before he was literally laughed at by several attendees.”

    The confrontational town hall meeting almost didn’t even happen, after a
    member of the public, armed with a camera, refused to stop recording. A
    representative from the Chamber of Commerce, which sponsored the event,
    threatened to shut down the entire proceedings.

    What I always find darkly amusing is how people who want to preserve the fictions put forth by those who have power and enforce that power always get really really antsy when someone wants to create a permanent record, easily disseminated, of what has happened.

    Kind of like how cops always throw a huge strop when someone starts videotaping them.

  • Tricksterson

    “There are no government subsidies for oil” 
    Wow.  If he was able to say that with a straight face he should abandon Congress and take up professional acting.  He’d be a shoo-in for an Oscar.

  • Tricksterson

    It is completely impossible to fight with a sword by holding it in your mouth.  I’m just saying

  • Tricksterson

    Ironically Lenin was presrved and his body made into an icon against his wishes.  His will stated that he wanted to be buried next to his mother, a surprisingly human desire coming from him.

  • Matri

    It is completely impossible to fight with a sword by holding it in your mouth.  I’m just saying

    I dunno. Maximus the horse does a fine job at it.

  • Lonespark

    A million times this.

  • Jenny Islander

    Do you have a general idea of which are wonks and which are wingnuts?  I’m strongly considering voting Socialist if I can find any Socialist candidates to vote for.

  • heckblazer

    I would note that the number of 0.59 cents of each income tax dollar going to welfare excludes Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid, which some people count as welfare programs.  As the website at the link says, all three are primarily funded through FICA, although there is also some funding from the general fund (I’m not certain if that is anything other than interest owed to the programs’ trust funds).

    Even so, that’s a low number, especially for the richest country in the world.  

  • Tricksterson

    Okay but how many sentient cartoon horses are you likely to come across on an average day?

  • arcseconds

    They challenged him on the bullshit.  Good on them.  This gives me hope.  The more this happens the better.  No-one should be able to get away with obvious mistruths.

    (Incidentally, this ‘I don’t believe it’s true’ is revealing.  I’m imagining he just made the statistic up because he can’t imagine the world being such that the US isn’t the most wonderous place in the world on every scale.  And apparently he still can’t imagine it, despite being challenged on it.

     How on earth do these people get into Congress?

    (I mean, I kind of know how… but I’m still gobsmacked every time we see a clear   example of this))

  • If your answer = 0, you need to consider a more pharmacutically enhanced lifestyle. 

  • Matri

    *points to the GOP* Any day now.

  • “How can you not know that, you’re a medical doctor?” one woman replied.

    GOP Talking Points are more real than the lies he was told in Liberal Medical School by his brain washing professors – that’s just obvious!

  • How on earth do these people get into Congress?

    They have the money to pay for campaigns. The rest of us don’t.

  • “For every federal income-tax dollar you pay, 0.59 cents goes to welfare.” (Not 59 cents, but about 3/5 of one penny.)”

    This is what I was saying a few months ago and no one would hear it.

    “you saw that 27 cents of every 2011 federal income tax dollar went to the military, while 21.4 cents went to health programs, 14.5 cents paid interest on the federal debt”

    and the beaurocracy to run it all.

    They’re never going to spend less than 1/4 on the military. so the only thing we can do is make that 1/4 as small as possible. income tax = war

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    That’s the spirit! Decide that orchestrating the violent deaths of foreigners is inevitable, so you may as well screw over the poor at home.

  • sgt- we’re screwing them over now. agitating for higher axes for the rich might make you feel better but it isn’t helping the poor.  .59 cents? these are mere crumbs.  and orchestrating the violent deaths of foreigners IS inevitable under our current system. What we have now are washingtons priorities. Hillary clinton likes the way things are. Obama is president, this is his government.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Yes, because Obama has the power to snap his fingers and get a budget through Congress that includes a guaranteed living wage for everybody.

  • Tricksterson

    This will get bricks thrown at me but you remind me of all the conservatives in the Eighties who thought Reagan’s cabinet was restraining him and that they should “Let Reagan be Reagan”.  They (and I was one of them at the time ) didn’t realize that he was being Reagan, that he was substantially more pragmatic than either the right or the left gave him credit for.  Same thing with Obama.

  • Ellie- exactly. it can’t happen so why try?

    Trickerston- He was pragmatic in lebanon. those lessons have been lost since.

  • EllieMurasaki

    One, it can happen. Look at Sweden. Perhaps it can’t happen in the current US political climate, but political climates have been known to change.

    Two, fuck you for saying the lives of our own less fortunate aren’t worth fighting for.

  • ellie- I’m not saying it, you are. You can’t just stand by the status quo and act like you are doing something about anything by voting one way or the other. We have moral culpablility for war and poverty.  If you owned slaves and only beat them once in a while you still owned slaves.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Either we have the responsibility for, and therefore the responsibility to end, war and poverty, or “[ending war and poverty] can’t happen, so why try?”  Make up your fucking mind.

  • the mechanism to end those things is not through the thing that causes them: the state.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I assume mandating that the minimum wage be a living wage is off the table, then, as is a Swedenesque negative income tax and a citizen’s allowance. In their absence, how do you intend to solve poverty without relying on rich people to display exceeding generosity en masse?

  • Tricksterson

    And here’s another way in which the New Right is different from the Old Right.  Not many people realize it but the Negative Income ax was born from the brow of Milton Friedman.

  • Tricksterson

    Oops let me try again:

  • Tricksterson

    What am I doing wrong?  This worked before, I thought.

  • Ellie- the poor people can start their own businesses and become  rich people. Everyone can be rich.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Yes, because  banks are falling all over themselves to lend money to poor people to start businesses with, especially the businesses that fold within five years, as half of all businesses do.

  • Ellie- the poor people can start their own businesses and become  rich people. Everyone can be rich.

    It’s things like that facile statement, Chris Hadrick, that make me wonder if you’re just a bit thick when it comes to grasping how Things Are More Complicated Than That.

    As EllieMurasaki points out, on the microeconomic level, bank lending and/or venture capital is a big if.

    Further, on the macroeconomic level, as structured, our society is inherently pyramidal in structure. For some people to get rich, others cannot.

    If we were all to be rich, we would all likely find we need assistants and go-fers and so on – all the people who, sight unseen, keep the gears of your business going so a business owner can make money.

    But purely by definition, one must pay these people less than the value-added they generate, else payroll costs would just end up making the business break even at best.

    Result: The pyramidal structure must needs re-emerge.

    The only true way out of this is to radically transform our society. Machines have been doing the work of humans for generations now and the process must continue until as much of the work as possible is done by machines – robots – and the resulting wealth shared by all humans as a common birthright.

    The irony is, to make us all rich – the stated dream of capitalists – society must become even more socialist.