Friday, October 25, 2013

We Are Grateful!

A reader has requested I pass on some good news, something uplifting.  Enough of the negative stuff, at least for today.  So here it is:

The sun is shining.  It is warm and quiet.  Peaceful.

We are blessed with good fortune.  We didn’t earn it, or even deserve it.  But there it is, and we are grateful.

We are in good health.  Those we love are doing well.  And we are grateful.

We have food and clothing and a beautiful home.  And we are grateful.

The violence that occurs all too often, both man made and from nature, has passed us by.  And we are grateful.

These blessings are with us every day.  While the bad news gets the attention, the good news is too easily forgotten.  Yet these blessings are with us every day.  And we are grateful.

We give thanks and do not take our blessings for granted.  We are grateful!

Thursday, October 24, 2013


First, we’re telling the Germans and French and others that they’re wrong to accuse us of spying on them.  We wouldn’t spy on our allies.  How can they say such things?  Shocking!

Second, Warren Buffet says JPMorgan Chase shouldn’t be held responsible for bad things done by Bear Stearns and WaMu before they were acquired by Morgan.  Sounds right, even considering that Buffet is a Jamie Dimon fan and has a financial interest in JPMorgan.  Also, Buffet says, JPMorgan did the government a favor by making these acquisitions.

But then Jon Stewart comes on and says that at the time of the acquisitions Dimon said the liabilities of Bear Stearns and WaMu should be JPMorgan’s responsibility.  And even set aside $28 billion to cover the downside, more than twice as much as the fines that are to be levied on JPMorgan.  Stewart also shows video of financial pundits saying in 2008 how smart Dimon was to make the purchases.  These same pundits now say the government is wrong to punish JP Morgan.

Who’s right in all this mishmash?  Depends on what your bias is.  Show me your ingoing bias and I’ll tell you what you think!

Third, Detroit outrage:  A new hockey arena is to be built in Detroit.  Cost: $650 million.  Amount of public money to be spent on the arena:  $283 million.  Owner of the Red Wings hockey team:  Billionaire Mike Ilitch.  Announcement of the public subsidy comes the same week that the City of Detroit declares bankruptcy. 

Is there something wrong with this picture?  Ask the people of Detroit who have minimal public services, e.g., takes hours for the police or fire fighters to respond to an emergency!  The Michigan Governor who approved the deal:  Tea Party advocate for less government in our lives, Rick Snyder.  Who says money talks?  Ain’t no talkin’ necessary on this one!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Bad Jokes!

Beware the Ides of October.  A few months off from Shakespeare’s warning in “Julius Caesar,” but apropos anyway.

The farce going on between the Democrats and Republicans, the House and Senate, and the White House and everyone continues.  I’m reminded of an African proverb:  When the elephants fight the grass suffers.  The grass, of course, is all the rest of us.  Today, tomorrow, some day, these irresponsible fools will get an agreement together and step back from the brink.  Until the next time.  There’s no end in sight!

Another bad joke:  The U.S. trying to make an agreement with Karzai and the Afghans about leaving our troops behind in some capacity after the bulk withdraws next year.  What’s the point?  There is an illusion that we can have some influence on what happens.  We don’t have any influence now, even though we have many troops on the ground.  Afghanistan will continue to be a corrupt failed state, with or without the Taliban, with or without U.S. troops, with or without some agreement.  Get with the program guys – this is a waste of time!

Bad jokes #3, #4, etc.:

Thinking that by withholding aid we can influence the Egyptian military dictators.  Won’t happen!

Thinking the Israelis will be less strident about Iran if some progress can made in the talks that begin with the Iranians today!

Thinking that ridding Syria of chemical weapons will make it easier to get rid of Assad.  A good idea, but won’t happen!

Thinking that the Republican crazies who are tying up the government will pay the price in the next elections.  Won’t happen!  If anything, they’ll win reelection by greater margins than the last time around.

Thinking that the Supreme Court will put any limits on money in politics.  Won’t happen!  The super rich will expand their influence in the next few years.  Money talks!  Democracy walks!

That’s enough for now.  Have a nice day!

Monday, October 07, 2013

Court Outlook!

The Supreme Court is back in session.  I am not optimistic about what the key decisions are going to be.  As a matter of fact, the outlook is dismal.  On the key cases, what will likely happen:

Political Contributions:  Limits on contributions by individuals will be removed.

First Amendment:  In Greece, NY, town board sessions open with a prayer.  This court will rule that such prayers do not violate the First Amendment.

Affirmative Action:  In 2006, Michigan voted to ban the use of race for admission to state universities.  The court will uphold the ban.

Abortion:  An Oklahoma law curtails the use of drugs to induce abortions.  Does this law impose an undue burden on women’s access to abortion?  In another 5-4 decision, the Oklahoma law will be upheld.

Have a nice day!

Tuesday, October 01, 2013


Idiocy is defined as “extremely stupid behavior.”

So it is in Washington.  So what’s new?  Nothing.  Same old, same old.  It’s enough to turn one into a cynic.

A cynic is defined as “a person that believes that people are motivated purely by self interest rather than acting for honorable or unselfish reasons.”  Cynical about the behavior of House Republicans?  How could you possibly accuse them of such a thing?  Aren’t they just standing firm for their beliefs?  Idiots!  (An idiot is defined as “a stupid person.”)

10% of Americans think Congress is doing a good job.  I wonder in which universe these 10% are living.

I take it back.  They’re not stupid.  But they are selfish.  And misguided.  And they lack common sense and a commitment to what ultimately is in the common interest.  But you know what will happen?  Sooner or later an agreement will be reached and the government will be up and running again.  The idiocy is that it could be sooner but will most likely be later.  And so it goes in this great land of ours.  Have a nice day!