Radically Inept
Saturday, December 11, 2004
  Help preserve wealthy, elite families for future generations

In a shocking move Thursday, NHL hockey players offered to take 24 percent salary rollback of current contracts. While there are cynics who say this act only demonstrates what happens to the thinking faculities of men slammed against the plexiglass retaining walls and hit in the head with dense rubber disks flying in excess of 200 MPH too often, this offer, from such a surpising source, has inspired people around the globe to take actions to preserve the wealthy.

A spokesperson for the hockey players union was overheard to say, "Look, if we don't do something ourselves, the owners won't. They just can't be trusted to keep salaries down on their own."

In a related story, Christie's and Sotheby's have entered talks to set caps on the prices that rare artworks and antiquities can be auctioned at. A Christie's spokesperson stated that the prices for rare art pieces, like Van Gogh's and the like, are just too high, and that the wealthy can not be trusted to spend their money wisely. Saying, "If we don't take action now, wealthy elite families may wind up diluting their fortunes, and then who would the poor look to for guidance and idolatry? No, there are so few truly wealthy families, we must act to preserve them so that future generations maybe filled with envy by their power and wealth."

There has been a huge outwelling of support across the population earning $20 million per year and more. Saving Our Millionaires spokeswoman, Mary Qay said, "Look. Everyone worries about saving the Spotted Owls, the Snail Darters, or Polar Bears or something, but no one seems concerned about how few wealthy familes we have in this country. If we don't act now, imagine that your children's children may never have the opportunity to know kids who have everything they want. People need people to envy, and in fact, that is what makes being truly wealthy so difficult - there's no one else to look up to and envy. So, these selfless families must be preserved for our future; they cannot do it on their own; they are incapable of not spending their weal without outside intervention. They a true American resource and deserving of all of our efforts."

There is talk on Capital Hill that action would be taken to keep labor costs down. One Senator was heard to say, "Minimum wage be damned! If we want to save the rich, we need legislation enacting a miximum wage. I've heard suggestions from some of my colleagues that a maximum wage for illegal immigrants be in the area of $80 per day, for a twenty hour day, and that for legal citizens, their maximum wage needs to be halted somewhere aroung $20 to $25 dollars per hour with exceptions for top management only. This will ensure that the wealthy owners of corporations don't allow themselves to squander their fortunes out of a sense of misplaced generousity."

Not to be out done, newly elected Georgia Senator Rick Eddy (R), elected as a democrat but switching to the republican party as soon as the votes were counted, is proposing sweeping legislation upon being sworn in for his first term. In a statement to reporters, he said, "Look, I know in the past I have said some harsh things about the wealthy, but I have seen the light. We must work hard, and be prepared to sacrifice much to preserve the elite families. My bill would change the income tax law to ensure the survivial of family fortunes, and unlike other proposals which only go into effect uppon the death of the wealthy, mine is for the living. I will do away with the taxes on the wealthy while they are alive."

Insiders have said that originally Sen. Eddy had proposed increasing the tax on the income of the wealthy, but is now suggesting a complete revamping of the tax code; indexing the tax to the percentage of wealth a tax payer has, so that if a person is in the top one percent of wealthy US citizens, that person would only be required to pay taxes of one percent. The same would be true of those that fall into the top two, five and ten percent, and have those tax payers who represent the largest part of the population pay the largest share of their income in taxes. So, with the poor at 11.8 percent of US residents that would be their tax rate, and so the middle class, comprising 44.9 percent of the population, would pay 44.9 percent in taxes on their income, with the expectation that eventually as the middle class shrinks from the burden, their rate will go down, and be shifted to the growing bottom income earners.

"Truly a visionary plan, with broad support amongst those politicians who get campaign contributions from the wealthy," was what one congressional staffer was heard to say. "It is bold action like this that will guarantee the survivial of elite families for generations."

UPDATE: In a related story, this just in: Members of the Walton Family, the Kennedy Clan, and the Bush Tribe have filed the first of its kind class action suit alleging class discrimination in the Federal Fifth Circuit Court in Atlanta. The suit alleges that the Salvation Army, Habit For Humanity, Toys For Tots and the Christian Relief Fund, among other charities listed, violated their civil rights. Arnold Schwarzenegger, speaking on behalf of the clamiant's families, made a brief statement, saying, "Why shouldn't we also receive charity? If you are going to give toys to the children of the poor, why should you not give toys to the children of the wealthy? And if you are going to build homes for the poor, why shouldn't you be required to build mansions for the wealthy? It's clearly a case of discrimination based on class and wealth, and is a violation of our civil rights." Gov. Schwarzenegger declined to comment further.
Thursday, December 09, 2004
  Ahhhh, now my dog will remain uneducated

CNN.com - University that awarded MBA to cat sued - Dec 7, 2004

I don't know how many emails I get a day offering me the 'opportunity' for an advanced degree. Glad they busted these guys - now I hope they get the rest of 'em. 
  General Zinni asks for interagency reform - (United Press International)

I caught the question answer period of this, General Zinni asks for interagency reform - (United Press International), last night on C-SPAN, but I can't find a link directly to it. Too bad. It was one of the most nuanced discussions on how to coordinate military activities with humanitarian aid I've ever heard. And Gen. Zinni comes across as someone I would have liked to serve under.

Also, on C-SPAN's morning call in show, this morning, they stated that they were going to put the transcripts of Rumsfeld's Townhall meeting in Camp Buehring, Kuwait on their web-site, but I can't find the link yet. Here's a decent summary of what I've been hearing (and you don't have to sign in to access it), Troops put Rumsfeld on the spot: South Florida Sun-Sentinel
CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait � Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld came to Camp Buehring on Wednesday to lead a morale-lifting town hall discussion with Iraq-bound troops. Instead, he found himself on the defensive, fielding pointed questions from soldiers complaining about aging vehicles that lacked armor for protection against roadside bombs.

Rumsfeld, seemingly caught off guard by the sharp questioning, responded that the military was producing extra armor for Humvees and trucks as fast as possible, but that the soldiers would have to cope with equipment shortages.
Hopefully, as the heat goes on, at some point, Rummie will get burned. At least, we can hope. 
  Pretend your a hedge fund manager

Really. What if your job was as a hedge fund manager, or you had a private client? Your job would be to return 'profit' on investments. Seriously. No thought of social responsibility should effect your decisions. You have a simple job - make people who have money, more money. Just put yourself in that head for a moment. That is your job. To make more money for people who already have money. That's it. No complications.

Now, from that, without putting some conspiracy spin on everything, where do you come out?

Let me suggest you look at Planned Obsolescence. Now planned obsolescence in the article above is directed at manufacturing, but what if you use the same approach to investing? If you invest in a company that pollutes, wouldn't make sense to also invest in a company that does environmental remediation? In fact, if your customer was already invested in companies that were being sued and held pecuniarily liable, for instance the case of Asbestos Claims (Haliburton, for instance), would it not make sense to hedge against the losses and invest in the companies that will be paid to remediate the asbestos? Nation wide? And then, well, you might well want to invest that customers money in medical sectors such as the ones that patent a New Drug to Treat Asbestos Cancer?

That is my problem with 'Unbridled Capitalism' - it leads to non-sustainable activities for profits. I mean, I don't care if I damage the environment if I make money doing so, and then make money cleaning it up. Why would I? Short of some sort of ethic based on some sort of morality, which we don't seem to possess in the corporate world, why wouldn't I just plan to make old growth obsolete, and then invest in tree farms? Why make a safer car - just invest in acute for-profit medical care facilities. Why invest in other people's children's education - just invest in the for profit prison system, or the companies contracted to provide social services.

There was an old story, I don't how how true and I can't seem to find it right now, about a couple of rich guys sitting in their country club, probably out in the Hamptons somewhere. One of them is reading a newspaper, probably the Wall Street Journal, and tells his friend that an article says that heroin addiction is on the rise. And his friend replies, "What company makes syringes?" No need to feel social concern for the addicts and the ramifications of rampant addiction upon society - No, just how do I make money on the problem?

Gotta go for now. I'm still working on this, and I think it's related to my other question, "Why do I kill for your?" I haven't thought through the connection yet, but the answer is probably at the bottom line.

Back for a moment:

The point I guess I getting to, is maybe that is truly what is happening under this administration - planned obsolescence of America. Once we've destroyed America, well, we'll invest in China, or elsewhere - where we see the opportunity for greater profits. If you're not worried about the country, and you have the money to ensure your children live well regardless of what happens, well, why not?

Oh, via Chocolate Morphine comes this heads up: pissed off and proud of it (I'd post the picture, but I'm still ignorant on how to do fancy stuff like that, even though I've been told it's easy). 
Wednesday, December 08, 2004
  They've screwed us again, the MFs

If you were wondering - No, there is no end to the crap this administration will pull to enrich the rich, and screw our health in the process. It took me a while to figure out how far ahead of me this administration was on this. It's not just the immediate gains from the clear cutting of pristine forests, but also the long term profits from having us pay to clean up the mess they make, and the money the for-profit medical industry will make from treating us for the ill health we will have from the poor environment we'll live in. It's a fucking win-win situation for the corporatists, and almost entirely at our (tax payers) expense.

Here's the part about working for the government that will really bother me - the suppression of the truth in support of someone else's profits, EPA STIFLES OBJECTIONS TO BUSH ROADLESS PLAN
Water Quality, Habitat and Other Concerns Cut from Comments to Forest Service
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has censored the warnings of its professional staff about a Bush Administration plan to build more roads across national forests, according to documents released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). EPA deleted comments about a host of environmental problems, ranging from impaired public drinking water to spreading invasive plants, from comments it submitted to the U.S. Forest Service on November 26th.

“Things have gotten pretty extreme when the Environmental Protection Agency is no longer permitted to voice environmental concerns,” stated PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch. “’Never was heard a discouraging word’ is no longer just a lyric from Home on the Range; it is the new federal environmental mantra.”
  The Dream

I had a dream the night before last that bordered on a nightmare. I was sitting in a church congregation and the minister kept hounding me to tithe. My parents were sitting a few pews back. Since we are all atheists, this was already disturbing enough. Than when I refused to give money, the minister sicked a large dog on me - looked more like a wolf. Well, I started running, but when I got cornered I wound up making friends with the dog/wolf. So, then he sicked three more of these wolf-dogs on me, and again I ran. I wound up trying to take refuge under the roof of a car that was laying in the grass after some one had turned their sedan into a convertible with a chain saw. Well, it was all that effective defensively, but again I wound up making friends with the dogs, and we just frolicked in the grass.

Then I woke up, and the TV was on the PBS Station during a pledge drive, and that guy, Dr. Wayne Dyer, new-age snake oil salesman, was on asking me for money. Well, that explained the dream - I was being hounded for money while I was asleep, and it explains why I watch less and less PBS. I've saided before - Newt Gingrich succeeded in destroying PBS. It is no longer commercial free, and the programming is degenerating faster, well, okay, not quite as fast as A&E and Discovery channels, but it's moving in that direction. I'm waiting for them to do their own version of MONSTER This Old House, or finding their own dysfunctional family to build motorcycles.

Continuing down this vein, I also want to point out that while Hollywood gets the credit for lowering the morals in this country, the credit really belongs to Madison Avenue. They are the ones that bombard the air waves with more messages that lying and deception is acceptable behaviour, and material positions will get you laid, than any Hollywood release. As Bill Hicks said in one of his routines, 'if your an ad executive, do us all a favor and put a gun to your head and pull the trigger', or something to that affect.

In fact, that actually explains the problem I have always had with Ayn Rand and the people who spoute her "Objectivism". She blamed the wrong people for the dumbing down of the masses, or rather, she placed the blame only on the left (and they certainly have down their part), when in fact the capitalists of Madison Avenue are equally, if not more responsible, since they have more money to spend on the dumbing process. I mean, it's far easier to sell crap to stupid people.

NOTE: The reason for the derth of posts is that I'm working diligently on applying to government jobs. I've had gather all of my old OERs, awards, certificates and any other scrapes of info that demonstrate I proficient at --------. And, then I have to figure out how to word it so that I'm not exaggerating my experience, but also not missing the opportunity to cite the experience I have. Anyway, in a few minutes I'll have to fill out an SF 85 for a lower level position that I will be interviewing for (which the Wife assures me means I have the job), but I'm really looking to get hired at a higher grade, though that it looks like that will mean living in an efficiency apartment in the DC area for a few years.

I'll try to post a piece I've been working on later tonight, but we have company coming this weekend; I have more applications to fill out, and there are chores around the house that need to get done, so... 
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