2009 Jimmy V “Celebrity” Golf Classic

I just looked through the ABC News Channel 11 photos of the the Jimmy V “Celebrity” Golf Classic. I could hardly recognize a single “celebrity” aside from Arnold Palmer. They did point out “Dennis Haskins, best known for his role as Principal Richard Belding in the sitcom Saved by the Bell.” Who in the name of Almighty Isis is responsible for my missing his appearance? There should have been wide spread public notice and a staggering security detail for someone of such notoriety as Screech’s principal.

I guess the ‘ol Jimmy V just ain’t what it used to be. All I want to know is, did Hootie make it back? It can’t be a golf classic without middle age one hit wonders.  They can’t be easily replaced by old politicians and rich people looking for a reason to call each other “celebrities”.  Oh ya, Lyle Lovett, Meatloaf and the guy from Extreme Makeover Home Edition were there too.  No not Ty, the other dude with the glasses. Far as I’m concerned Lovett’s biggest claim to fame was Julia Roberts.

Why are you looking at me like that? I admire the cause but kinda question the execution. If I’m wrong then why is this tournament falling in notoriety?

The rich got richer. Now they will get poorer.

According to a new study released by Berkley, 23.5% of all income earned in 2007 went to 1% of the US population. The other 76.5% was graciously distributed to the other 99% of us. The top 14,988 richest families saw their income rise by 6.8%. Everyone else’s combined grew 2.8%.


Researchers for this article went on to find that “The possible repeal of the federal tax on large estates in coming years would certainly accelerate the path toward the reconstitution of the great wealth concentration that existed in the U.S. economy before the Great Depression.”

All of this is because “Real income growth for the bottom 99 percent had been very meagre during the Bush expansion starting in 2002. Even including 2007—a good year for ordinary US families-the top percentile captured 65 percent of total real income growth per family from 2002 to 2007”.

The Bush tax breaks. What a win…for 1% of income earners. I guess the “it will create jobs” rhetoric didn’t work out so well huh?

Trickle Down Economic theories = Piss on the Poor.

Economic Hitman John Perkins said he believes Americans are “compassionate people”.

perkinsWhere did he get that idea?  Compassion is not a visible trait among Americans.  During an interview about his 2004 best seller Confessions of an Economic Hitman Perkins said that he thinks that once Americans know why other parts of the world have so much animosity for the US that Americans would change because we are “compassionate people”.

Uh, John…no, we’re not.  Is it any mystery that America is the world headquarters of personal greed?  Just look at the right wing attack on health reform.  One of the biggest complaints opponents have is that they don’t want to face a tax increase, even for the ultra wealthy, to pay for “deadbeats” who can’t afford health care for themselves.  American’s don’t even care about each other.  What made you think there is enough “compassion” in America to believe we would change our behavior because of the opinion of another nation or culture?   These are nations and cultures clearly below the standards set for consideration by most American’s.  America is the ultimate superpower empire on earth.  The place where the living standards are the highest and the rest of the world is beneath us.  What, you didn’t get the memo?

For those not familiar, John Perkins was recruited by the National Security Agency to convince foreign nations to take out large international loans for domestic infrastructure projects and then collect the monies owed to US corporations.  For example Ecuador owes 50% of their GDP (gross domestic product) to international lenders and corporations.  When they can’t pay they have to turn over assets, like the Amazon rain forests, to energy companies.  If they don’t turn over assets or pay then the “Jackyl’s” would be sent in.  These Jackyl’s, which are CIA sanctioned operatives, would cause internal strife such as military coups and even assassinations.  When they fail to get the assets US corporations are pursuing then “we send in our young men and women to die and to kill, like we are doing in Iraq today”.  To date not one source has been able to scrutinize or denounce John Perkin’s claims.  Those who tried to dispute his claims quickly retracted when confronted with evidence.  In John’s words “it’s all about building Empire”.

Watch the interview and learn more than you want to know about the Empire that is larger and more powerful than the US government.  It is the community of world corporations and their ambitions above and beyond all international laws.  NAFTA and the WTO are their vehicles to legitimacy.  The corporations grow rich regardless of any social or moral destitution they create.  The mandate of their executives is profits at any cost, even lives.

I must not be a “Real American”.

More foreclosures than last year are on the way and people will be without a place to live. This is because job loss is now the leading reason for foreclosures. The perfect people can’t blame the problem on the irresponsible ones any more. Those now facing foreclosure are people who were not in trouble, had good credit and wouldn’t have a problem today if their job hadn’t been outsourced overseas or eliminated all together to turn their salary into earnings on shareholder reports.

But I’m sure there are still perfect people who will make some pretentious comment about how these folks should have “planned ahead” and “shouldn’t have borrowed more than they could afford to pay back”. That’s because there will always be assholes among us who may not ever know a hardship thanks to nepotistic handouts, free rides and other financial blessings, earned or not. And they’ll always have a condescending comment regarding the failure of others as long as their self-perceived perfection saturates them. It’s arrogance and it permeates American society like a virus that we are not trying to cure. The scary thing is the pending economic doom we’re facing may even catch up to the trust fund kiddies this time. You know, the ones who preach independence and responsibility working at Starbucks in SOHO while mommy and daddy pay the $2600/mo. rent.

American’s who actually labored their whole lives are the ones facing the fire right now. Those who are wealthy enough to be vested in the markets are trying to maintain their wealth at the expense of the American worker. And they will for a while. So the kids of rich bankers and investors will talk down to people who are rapidly losing their life savings as if they have a clue what it’s like to actually work hard. Meanwhile unemployment benefits will run out and families will be forced to the street.

Greater demands will be placed on our social service networks and the “real Americans” will scream that it’s not their place to provide for people who “don’t want to work”. I never seen so little compassion for the plight of people facing hardship as I do in America right now. From health care reform to social support the conservative right has taken a position that it’s not their responsibility to help others. I called out conservatives but this is really becoming a class divide. The haves and have-nots are going at each other hard now. The “real Americans” are mad, screaming and in self preservation mode.

Amy and I have our immediate family, on both sides, very close to where we currently live. After watching and analyzing the situation for years I am completely serious about my next comment.

Unless unexpected changes take place my goal, that I will focus on intently over the next decade, is to get my family out of this country. American greed, arrogance, nepotism and narcissism are tearing this country apart. People are becoming increasingly vocal that they do not care about others. They only care about themselves and feel they are responsible only for their own well being and should not be required to care for others. I don’t want to live in a country full of people with this attitude.

Yesterday I watched NRA advocates in Phoenix carry automatic weapons to health care rallies to promote their cause.  A cause that is not even in jeopardy except in the minds of those who perceive their government as a constant threat.  I realized I don’t want to live in a place where I’ve got to teach my children to protect and care for themselves and no one else. I don’t want them to be part of a society they cannot find acceptance in without proclaiming hatred for their government.   To speak of the greater good implies weakness and in America (at least in NC) and it is rarely tolerated.  Thanks to years of believing bullshit jargon like “the one who dies with the most toys wins” all the self centered, arrogant, narcissistic American’s are beginning to reap the rewards of their demise.  I don’t think it can come fast enough for some.

Growing up I was actually proud and comfortable being an American. Now I despise the omnipresent fear that many use to manipulate the American social construct.  Many have forgotten that “The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself”.  Instead scare tactics have now become the weapon of choice for the Republican party who uses their vocal “leadership” to make comments such as those suggesting government run “death panels”.   According to these standards to be a “real American” you must comply with party policy, accept the propaganda, checking your individual decision making abilities and thought processes at the ballot box.  Otherwise you are not a true “patriot” or a “real American”.  Just shut up, drink the Kool-Aid and thank God for it.

I personally believe other countries and governments have been more correct, in many ways,  about planning their social structure and governance than the US but the sheer arrogance of many if not most Americans will never let them recognize any successes of other nations.  The “real American’s” will never accept implementation of policy that is not perceived as an American original despite any visible success in other countries.  The perception of other nations that American’s are pompous and arrogant is not without established merit or basis for belief.

To show your disgust for this writing go out and put a magnetic American flag decal on your car.  You know, the one made in China.

Angry Health Reform People

Did Republicans forget that they lost an election in part because John McCain came across as an angry old man?  And remember the rowdy old people who stood up screaming about socialism at the McCain campaign rallies?  It seems the only thing that whines harder than my two year old is a Republican that isn’t getting it’s way.

Last night on ABC News 11 I listened to a  man, who didn’t get to scream and chant at representative Brad Miller about the health reform bills, tell an interviewer “I don’t want to have my family treated by the V.A.”.  What?

Are these people serious?  Are they really that dumb or are they trying to be sarcastic?  Based on this guys enunciation and dress code I was left with no alternative but to think he’s serious.  What’s going to happen when the very Latino’s these rednecks are trying to run out of the country start looking more intellectual than the very best the hard right can put forward?  Your “other brother Daryl” doesn’t count.

If you watch these town hall rants on health care you will see an clear demographic in attendance: middle aged and old white people who are clearly angry by their own admission.  They seem to be getting madder.  On a Democratic radar that sign means it’s working and this must be the right thing to do.  Nothing says success to a Democratic legislator like a madder than hell conservative.  Against their own best interests conservatives have cornered the market on disgruntled lately.

Instead of getting mad why don’t they come up with some valid counter points and arguments.  They only thing they have is “government sucks” and “lower taxes”.  Care to add any meaningful content to the conversation aside from “don’t change anything”?  One thing they have stated is that the cost of health care services are too high.  Very true.  And here’s why their only valid point is counter productive:

The very minute any legislator, Democrat or Republican, tries to regulate the prices of drugs and health care services through cost controls, the same conservatives using price as their argument will call for the government to stay out of the free market. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t so just be damned they say.

Even the VP of Economics for the conservative Heritage Foundation has noted that health reform must be enacted.  He’s “not sure” about a public option.  Paul Krugman tried to explain it to him:  Without a public option, including a mandate for all Americans to have coverage, a bill would only serve as a windfall for insurance companies.  The idea that a mandate will reduce indigent costs, thereby reducing provider costs resulting in health care savings is simply a dumb-ass pipe dream. The insurance companies will simply add the new revenue to their record profit reports for many years to come. Once again for the slow readers: The mandate is the reason the public option is absolutely necessary.

If you want to take the public option out you’ve got to take the mandate out.  I endorse taking the mandate out no matter what happens to the public option.  No one should be forced into an untested system.  Especially one that’s built on an already broken system.  Massachusetts did it under the guidance of Sir Ass Hat, Mitt Romney, and I wrote about it here on July 4th two years ago.  Now it’s contributing to their states bankruptcy.  Did costs go down?  Hell no.  I have no choice but to think that  the Mass. legislators were led by insurance companies into the law they passed.  The federal legislators should not make the same mistake.

Health insurance companies will lobby for the mandate without a public competitive option.  If they get their way America’s ultimate destitution will be forthcoming at a highly accelerated rate.