We’re From the Democratic Party, and We’re Here to Sell You Out

While we’re all having fun with Sharron Angle pretending that she doesn’t endorse Social Security privatization, let’s see what the grownups are thinking:

Is there a new, bipartisan consensus forming on Capitol Hill about whether (and how) to scale back Social Security benefits? A surprising number of signs point to “yes” — and that has many progressives looking ahead a few months to what they believe could become a serious fight.

And who’s sharpening their knives?

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer: “We should consider a higher retirement age or one pegged to lifespan.”

House Majority Whip James Clyburn: “With minor changes to the program such as raising the salary cap and raising the retirement age by one month every year, the program could become solvent for the next 75 years.”

Clyburn’s half right: You’re taxed for Social Security on up to $106,800 of wages, above which you get to ride free. And if you haven’t been paying attention the past thirty years, we’ll remind you that more income floats above the cap than before.

So, y’know, why not just remove the cap entirely? That would — let’s see, carry the 3 — completely eliminate any projected shortfall, while removing what is now a very regressive tax.

Yeah, we know. Stinque apologizes for its outburst of rationality.

Republicans And Democrats Lining Up Behind Major Changes To Social Security [TPM]

dont you have anything cheerful and uplifting in the “to post” file?

how about this:

NEW YORK (CBS) Justin Bieber is apparently the subject of a new Internet prank, which now has the singer facing a tour of North Korea.
Bieber held a contest on his website encouraging fans to vote for where the next stop on his “My World” tour should be, with no restrictions on which countries could be voted for. The contest ended up with more than half a million votes to send the 16-year-old teen icon to the communist nation.

Oh, wow. I’m getting the “Meet Real Guys” ad, and one of these dudes is wearing a hat over a bandanna.

better than meet the rich 13 year old girl.

@Capt Howdy: Haha! Yay for “Not the MSNBC Ad” ! I’m so glad they kicked us off.

Jesus. Now I’m getting “How to spot warning signs of heat stroke.” I need to get “How to spot true signs of fuckmeister.”

@JNOV: I have an ad for a coupon for ice cream sandwiches.

@SanFranLefty: Oh, that would be sooooo awesome right now! Lick out the middle until you have only two cookies and eat!

@nojo: Could you nuke the ads from http://shop.cafepress.com/health-care? I’m really sick of that Obama-as-the-Joker shit.

@mellbell: Shhhh. It’ll go to his head…

@JNOV: Nah, there’s no room there after “you are, in fact, awesome.”

@nojo: I see what you did there.

ADD: ::Gets fitted for hearing aids::

@JNOV: Takes Gmail a month to flush out the trash.

@nojo: Oh, so now we’re trash talking? How about a game of HORSE?

GOOD LORD! What did I say to trigger the Russian Mail Order Brides?

And now Will. I. Am ads? I need more beer for this shit.

Shout out to David Byrne! (I need to pay more attention to the pics if not the alt-text.)

T/J: “Volver Volver” with Freddy Fender, Flaco Jiminez and Willie Nelson. I just couldn’t help myself. Check out Freddy’s hair: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvTBdQk5fa0

@Dodgerblue: Okay. I just have to bitch about the accordion for a minute. ::mumblemublegripegripe:: Now I’ll give it a shot…


/griping over

Okay — that was pretty cool. Strats looked so flat back then — no beveling or what?

@Dodgerblue: ACK! Teles! Okay. No moar beerz…

TJ/ Best cover of Blackbird ever. Dionne Farris.

And Gloria Gaynor has nothing on this.


@nojo: Too much buttsecks. Or not enough. Or something.

@JNOV: Early call is a 5.9. That’s almost an orgy.

@nojo: Pfft. That’s nothing. If it’s not over a 7.0, no one has rocked your world.

@JNOV: It’s another aftershock from the Easter Rocker, so it counts for something. We’re on a roll.

@nojo: Borrego Springs? Across the hills from Sandy Eggo.

@nojo: Is it along the same fault as last time? Memory is cloudy, but I’m thinking the Santa Monica one that had two along the same fault and the ones in Baja? I’ll head over to the Geo site…

@Dodgerblue: USGS seems confused about how to rank it.

@SanFranLefty: Does Mr. SFL get paged or the like when one of these hits?

@SanFranLefty: @JNOV: I keep getting all car insurance ads. I’m now paranoid that the Google bots know something I don’t.

@JNOV: They’re all along the same gulch. Pretty, pretty beads!

@SanFranLefty: Every time, without fail. Took them a few minutes to rack up the latest one.

Damn, they knocked that down to 5.4 real fast…

Definitely a Rattle & Hum. Like driving over a bad patch of concrete.

@Mistress Cynica: ::SNORT:: I swear they’re not clairvoyant.

@nojo: I’ll remember you fondly. You were fucking awesome, really, you were.

@nojo: Been about 15 more since the 5.4 roller.

@Dodgerblue: Those are all the imperceptible jiggles. At least from a hundred miles away.

@nojo: Dr. Lucy Jones is giving a presser at CalTech now, but I can’t find it on the net.

@nojo: Okay — I actually looked at the graphic for awhile. That’s no joke.

@nojo: Imperceptible Jiggles would be an awesome name for a band.

“We should consider a higher retirement age or one pegged to lifespan.”

That tears it. I’m going back to smoking and upping my butter intake. 2 packs a day and a cholesterol reading above 300 should get me the projected lifespan that will allow me to retire at a reasonable time–or even skip retirement entirely, which also solves the problem.

Its like I done said, the Democratic suicide policy agenda, make an unpopular stand supporting illegal immigrants, appoint a lesbian to the supreme court, and then sell out each and every single working person in the country who has nothing at all, at the end of their working life, after they have been nickeled and dimed to death working two jobs and struggling to make ends meet, by fucking them on Social Security.

And the whole “fiscal necessity” for this “austerity” measure, its because the government has been using Social Security payments from low income working class people to make up for the enormous tax breaks given to the rich, since Reagan.

Noone better raise a fucking eyebrow, or even think, I don’t care, deeply, about civil rights, the rights of gay people, about equality and fairness in society, but dammit, economic justice and economic issues affect fucking everyone, black, white, gay, straight, and while the dems throw some bones to minority groups, they are fucking, simply fucking, every working person in the country, going right along with the dismantling of the social safety net and shifting of the tax burden from rich to poor, and the overall economic disparities in society are increasing, and the political marginalization of working people is increasing, and its all fucking ignored, most of the time, because our own party, the democrats, have balkanized their own base, dividing it into little interest groups and gaining support from each interest group, piecemeal, which allows the dems to continue to have the support of a large number of people, while they sell out everyone, fucking everyone.

@SanFranLefty: “Imperceptible jiggles (except that they are really very very perceptible) are the best part of sex.

@Promnight: Like Nojo, I ask, how hard would it be to remove the cap on the salary at which SS is taken out? Then again, I was Nojo’s amen-corner to the “why fuck around with crazy health care reform – Medicare for all!”

Sometimes the simple/easy way is just too obvious. It’s disgusting that those of us who point that out are viewed as some sort of socialist freak. And I think that’s what really made me doubly pissed off at John Edwards – despite living in the ginormous McMansion, he was talking about this shit. He talked about poverty when all politicians but Kucinich wouldn’t go there with a 20 foot pole. Despite all the crazy shit that man did, he talked about something that nobody else would.

@SanFranLefty: You talk like you think that what makes sense and is fair is what matters. Removing the cap would increase the “taxes” paid by the rich by something over 20%. They will not allow that, they will not allow Obama and the Dems to even propose that. What matters is who really controls the country, not the good of the majority. The rich control the country, they tell both the GOP and the dems what to do. Gay marriage, no skin off the teeth of the rich, go ahead, it will just get republicans elected next time, and they will reduce taxes on the rich even more. They let Obama support immigration reform, that will just give them more cheap labor for their poultry farms and stockyards. They let him pretend to be a liberal, if it doesn’t hurt their pocketbook.

But when it comes to what matters, them having to pay higher taxes, or pay their workers more, or pay a penalty for exporting jobs, then we see who controls the democrats and the republicans.

So what if it would be fair and make sense and work? So what, even, if in the long run, it would benefit both the rich and the poor? Thats not what matters. This year’s profits, for the wealthy, are the only thing that matters. This year’s profits, next year, they will rape the poor some more, if necessary, they aren’t even worried about next year. Its my money, today, thats all that matters.

But raising taxes on the rich, they won’t let Obama do that.

@Promnight: The rich have always controlled the country, and the US “Revolution” was anything but. There was no real revolution in the sense that life changed for the masses in meaningful ways.

I’m with Lefty. Kucinich and Edwards (flawed as he is) brought issues to the table that no one else had the guts to discuss. It’s like crazy-ass Ross Perot. He’s nutters for sure, but at least he brought up the debt — he introduced it to the discussion.

We need gadflies — they make us think. Are they electable? Hell no, but they often bring issues to the table that no one else would dare to because they are that batshit.

@JNOV: Edwards was a Roosevelt democrat, like my dad, like me. He was my first choice. I love Kucinich, bless his heart, but you just can’t get involved with chemtrails and remain viable even in debate on the fringe.

@JNOV: God, I just have to say this, its the saddest thing in the world to hear you call Edwards and Kucinich “gadflies,” to me, they are the conventional wisdom, status-quo, average “liberals” of 40 years ago. Its deeply depressing, that the entire field of debate has shifted so far to the right since Reagan that now all the dems do is argue with the GOP over whether we should let them fuck us 7 inches deep, or 8 inches deep, and people who simply state the values and beliefs and policies that have been part of our nation for 70 years, are “gadflies.”

@Promnight: Right, but the national and world climate maybe wasn’t but was perceived to be a lot different than it is now, at least economically. There are some parallels if you consider that we’re in two wars and WWII was really two wars as well. But we’re not in a world war — it’s us running around being assholes and asking begging and fellating people to have our backs, and even though the economy is down the shitter, the masses are getting just enough crumbs to keep them from going all Emma Goldman up in here.

@Promnight: I don’t mean it as a pejorative. They stir shit up. They make you think. In this day and age, that means you’re unelectable.

I voted for some dude who promised Hope™ and Change™, and I can’t even articulate what those mean. Either I wasn’t clear on their definitions from the start, and I substituted my own ideas of Hope™ and Change™, or it was all a fucking farce. I guess the joke’s on me. I’m not laughing.

Why won’t the Not MSNBC ad offer me single Muslim men instead of single Muslim women? I thought these cookies knew me. I’m ready to be assimilated…

@nojo: So they’re moving north, right? At this rate, how long til SFL can feel them knocking on her door?

@TJ/ Jamie Sommers /TJ: We have a seismometer in our basement storage area, I shit thee not, so we are SOOOO ready for this imperceptible jiggling to move north.

Some day, I’ll post on Stinque the exclusive linque to the SFL seismometer – it’s fun to watch though it perhaps could reveal a little info about our household habits. Wood-framed home and all.

@TJ/ Jamie Sommers /TJ: SFL’s duck-obsessed significant other probably knows a lot more than me, but my understanding is that we’re dealing with a long fault, and jiggles south or north don’t make much of a difference.

Apparently — if I recall correctly something I read quickly — it’s also not a superstar fault, so we don’t know much about it, or as much as the glam faults that get all the publicity.

@nojo: Yeah, but it’s always the non-glamorous faults that do the most crazy and wacky damage, and so the three scientists who have ever studied the fault are rolling the dice that some day their fault will break. Or so I’ve heard w/r/t a semi-obscure fault that runs from Salton Sea area through Palm Springs and on to east of the so-called “Inland Empire” which is the basis of someone’s master’s thesis.

Or else it will be the Hayward Fault (70% likelihood) or San Andreas (55%) and anyone with one geology class under their belt will be blathering on teevee. And that’s not counting the weather guys who seem to think they know something about geology (Mr. SFL’s pet peeve anytime there’s an EQ and some weather dude prognosticates).

@SanFranLefty: Right. I used to live literally on the Rosecrans Fault. I had no idea. I was on a base in Oakland, and there was this cute little white picket bridge over what I thought was a ravine. HAHAHAHAHA! It was a fucking fault. Not only was it a fucking fault, but a hospital was built on this fucking fault. A hospital that was not retrofitted. Our earthquake preparedness training: You are truly fucked. The wings are going to break off this building and the hospital will fall one floor into the basement. Oh, and don’t forget to get your Hep B vaccs!


@SanFranLefty: Dubai’s gotta keep this thing afloat somehow. Libya? Wow. I guess we haven’t been paying them enough attention. Hello, Libya!

@JNOV & @Promnight:

I’m a recovering poll junkie, but I still occasionally visit Polling Report to see what’s going on with the proles, and the results are surprisingly comforting in an I’m-not-krayzee-I’m-not-krayzee kinda way.

For example, on something as simple as whether the country is headed in the right or wrong direction, you have to go back nearly a decade to find even a bare majority agreeing our nation is on the right track. Same with approval for Congress, it got damn near single digits during the economic collapse in 2008, and really hasn’t been above simple majority approval since the mid-90s.

What this tells us is that these feelings cross ideological lines fairly consistently over the last decade at least, and it makes one wonder how we can (at least purport to) have a functional nation when the vast majority of people are dissatisfied with it.

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