laguera25: Dug from UP! (Default)
( Mar. 7th, 2017 02:26 pm)
Another day, another Dragoncon disappointment, but they have invited a bunch of NASA nerds, perhaps as a backlash to the government's anti-science stance. Bravo to them. I'll have to seek out a few of their panels and demos.

Speaking of science, congratulations to Jason Isaacs for landing a plum gig on Star Trek: Discovery. I have but scant hope in a show whose pre-production has been a mess from the get-go and whose debut has been pushed back three times, but God bless Space Tavington. I might pick it up on DVD someday(yes, I'm a crusty old Luddite who still has a DVD player). I do feel bad for John Cho, who was so excited when Michelle Yeoh was cast because it was assumed she was the lead.


After years of relative stability, my panic attacks have returned. I can't pinpoint a specific cause, but it wouldn't be a stretch to say that the current political climate plays a major role. Nothing is certain. Everything is under siege, and our institutions have given lie to the idea and ideals of representative government. Jokes about self-interested politicians have been around forever, but the truth behind them has never been on such alarming, ostentatious display before, and the comforting notion that even politicians had lines they wouldn't cross has been obliterated. The entire foundation of the country is crumbling underfoot, and who knows what waits for us at the bottom of the abyss. Nothing good. Nothing kind, and while I feel pity for myself and sympathy for the folks who saw the danger and did their best to avert it with their vote, I can feel no such things for those who continue to support this perverse, craven administration and insist that trampling civil rights and fomenting racism and xenophobia is making America great again. Yes, yes, reach out and build a bridge and blah blah, but I'll be damned if I'll waste my time and empathy on a moron who sees the chaos and the fear of his fellow countrymen and stubbornly, belligerently refuses to admit that there is a problem at all, let alone that they had a hand in it. If good people wouldn't be consumed in the oncoming conflagration, I'd let the idiots burn without a pang of remorse. Gandalf I ain't.
As disappointing as I found the result of the election, the days since have disappointed me the more. Despite blatant evidence of Trump's corruption, collusion with the Russian government, and gross temperamental instability, as well as his brazen disregard for security protocols, an alarming number of my countrymen refuse to see he's a danger, and of those who do see, they don't care. They're too busy celebrating what they perceive as a victory. Now that their "man of the people" is in power, things will become as they ought to be. Women will know their place, and the unborn babies will be saved from the endlessly-churning murder mills. Those lazy poor people(read: poor non-white folks, not them, never, never them, the good, white, God-fearing Christians)will stop sucking the government teat and get a job. Those dirty, job-stealing immigrants will be rounded up and shipped back to Buttfuck, NotUSA, where they belong. And fuck those dirty phantom voters, too. No more money will be wasted on educated the useless retard children God foisted upon sinful parents as punishment and a lesson in humility. Maybe some charitable soul will feed them apple juice and crackers and teach 'em about Jesus and how to roll quarters for a princely twenty cents an hour. Those filthy gays will be punished and forced back onto the fringes, where they can't offend "decent" folk with their perversion and those decent folk won't have to behold the scandalous horror of two men holding hands. And now those stupid, college-educated hippie treehuggers won't be able to stop a man from earning an honest dollar just to save some water and trees and some dumb animals no one will miss. It's everything they have ever wanted.

I keep waiting for them to realize that the cost of their twisted, WASPy utopia comes at the cost of everything the hold dear and have taken for granted. Free speech, personal autonomy, freedom from government interference, freedom of thought and movement. How can they not as twenty-one states introduce bills to limit voting rights and curb lawful protest? How can they not when DHS and customs agents are demanding to access travelers' cellphones in order to paw through their contacts and social-media accounts, prurient children in search of an illicit thrill? How can they not when Congresspeople are dodging town hall meetings with constituents and the White House's mouthpiece, Kellyanne Conway, admits the administration has no intention of listening to "losers"? How can they not see that dismantling the EPA will have generations-long consequences for everyone, not just the idiot liberals they so despise?

But they keep on celebrating, because they finally stuck it to the libtards. They won. Who cares if it cost them everything they claim to cherish, if it will end in ash and bitterness for everyone, if there might not be a planet over which man has dominion according to their sacred Word of God? They won, and now all those snotty, entitled, mooching pissbaby dumbasses will have to suffer like they did for eight years under a black President. They would rather cling to this Pyrrhic victory and fiddle while Rome burns than abide the idea that they have been used, might have sold their beloved country to a fool for the right to hate.

As someone who's lived at ass-level from the day I was born, I know have terrible and selfish people can be, how much some of them delight in being petty tyrants for the black-minded fun of it, but I never imagined that so many of them would so gleefully sell themselves out for the chance to win. If decency and fairness could not act as bulwarks against oppression and lunacy, I thought self-interest would. They might not care about free speech for the hippies or abortions for those irresponsible skanks who had sex with someone who wasn't them, but they would care about affordable medical care for their own families and clean air and water for their children. They would care about a foreign power meddling in the affairs of the Greatest Country in the World(TM) and thinking they could fool red-blooded American patriots. They would care that the President has nigh-incoherent meltdowns at hour-long press conferences, where he harangues Jewish and African-American reporters and besmirches the dignity of the office. They would care that Betsy DeVos' policies endanger their children's right to an education. They would care that grossly-unqualified people are being appointed to public office.

That they don't has been a stunning blow to me. I've never thought my fellow Americans, or people in general, for that matter, were fundamentally good, but I did think, naively, as it turns out, that they possessed a scrap of self-preservation and would, therefore, defend the principles expounded in our Constitution, if only to preserve them for themselves. More fool me.

I'm not sure where the country goes from here. I'm not sure where I go. I can only apologize to the future generations we have betrayed and hope that they will learn from our willful folly.
According to the New York Times, the President of the United States did not know he was giving Steve Bannon a place on the National Security Council because he didn't read what he was signing. One would think that reading executive orders that carry the force of law would be the most basic of requirements for being the goddamn PRESIDENT of the UNITED STATES. Excuse me while I gibber quietly in a secluded corner.

Still undecided about how to celebrate Valentine's Day. On the one hand, it would be nice to go out, but on the other, it's supposed to be cold and breezy, and frankly, I'm not sure I want to spend money to be annoyed by fucktards. We'll see how we feel after the spate of storms that are predicted to blow through here tomorrow and Wednesday.
Every day, I tell myself I'm not going to look at my mother's Facebook, and every few days, I break down and look. They must know, I think. Surely they must know. But each time, I am disappointed. My family continues to celebrate President Trump as a savior, as the man who will Make America Great Again, even as he flouts the Constitution he swore to uphold and defend and nominates grossly unqualified people to Cabinet positions, including a potential Secretary of Education who thinks it should be left for the state to decide whether disabled children deserve to be educated. My mother, a mother to a disabled daughter, celebrates and does not understand why I am sad and afraid. Or care.

I'm trying t have hope, to believe my country will right its course. I still believe that, but I no longer believe it will be soon. Like so many countries before us--Franco's Spain, Mussolini's Italy, and Hitler's Germany--we must travel through the darkness before we find the light. Not all who begin this journey will see its end, but those who do will appreciate the gift they have been given, and it is they who will make this country great again.
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laguera25: Dug from UP! (Default)
( Jan. 28th, 2017 07:13 pm)
My country continues to fight. I continue to struggle. I don't sleep well. I wake up every morning, dreading what I'll find when I open my Facebook feed. Today, U.S. citizens are being denied entry into the country and detained in airports without the benefit of legal counsel. A woman scheduled for deportation allegedly attempted suicide at JFK International to escape the torment. Thousands have gathered at airports across the nation to protest the wanton cruelty of the madman we have elected, but thousands more are jubilant, insisting that their man of the people, a man of the people who has stacked his cabinet with Wall Street billionaires, mind, is finally putting America first and making her great again, all the while insisting that she is the greatest nation on earth.

The rift with Mexico widens. China whispers of the inevitability of war. Iran moves to ban U.S. citizens. Oblivious, my family exults and celebrates, confident that "good Americans" are ascendant once again. Such discrimination is unfortunate, they cluck disingenuously, but we have to protect ourselves first. By "ourselves," they mean white Christians. They do not realize that what these executive orders visit upon the "enemy" will one day be visited upon them. The America Trump envisions is not meant for them. They are disposable, a means to an end to be discarded once they have served their purpose. They do not see this. They don't want to see it. They want to be the winners. They will never admit their mistake, not even as the country burns and the world descends into chaos.

Unless a majority of Congress remembers its duty and moves to oppose the lunatic at the helm, I do not expect to survive this. I do not expect the country to survive. I hope that one day, those who do survive will sift through the records and the rubble and know that some of us tried, some of us did remember the painful lessons of history, of Hitler and Stalin and Idi Amin and Pol Pot, and tried to turn the course.

I hope history records that in the end, we tried to uphold the best of our country.
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Our President signed a refugee ban on Holocaust Remembrance Day. A society and Internet culture that can organize flash mobs to dance to "Thriller" in minutes and mount mailing campaigns to save TV shows or push for a certain ship can't be assed to mount daily protests against the rise of autocracy and fascism in the United States.

If only the consequences of this laziness and flagrantly stupidity could be visited upon only those who deserve it.
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laguera25: Dug from UP! (Default)
( Jan. 24th, 2017 01:41 pm)
I blazed through three hundred and seventy-four pages of Within These Walls yesterday. It's magnificently creepy. The twists are predictable for anyone who's read a lot of horror, but I don't care because they're so finely-tuned. Ninety pages to go, and I'll be sorry when they're finished.


Roomie kipped out to the library and the grocery store, and I'm here, trying to keep my head up. We're in deep water now, and it's only getting higher. We're getting object lessons in how an ostensibly reasonable and intelligent people can descend into authoritarianism and lunacy, and it's heartbreaking and terrifying. I never expected it to happen at all, let alone in my lifetime, and it's happening so fast, so easily. Resistance is feeble at best. No one seems to care. Business as usual, they say, and shrug. But it's not usual. It's monstrous. Gag orders. Private Presidential security. A ban on clean energy research and utilization. This is America in 2017. It is no longer the country so many of us claim to revere, and yet, so many of us are trying to pretend that it is. The Trump supports because they refuse to admit they have betrayed their country to an incompetent demagogue, and his opponents because we don't want to admit that America as we know it is fading.

We must fight--march, scream, kick, claw, harangue our leaders for action, file suits, demand investigations--but we're not, and we won't, because even now, as everything falls apart, we are still complacent, still sure that everything will be all right. It's the path of least resistance, and that is we prefer, we coddled children so accustomed to someone else cleaning up the mess.

This country deserves better, but we got exactly what we deserved.
Yesterday was heartening, welcome, and absolutely necessary to the survival of our democracy. It should be celebrated with pride, and those who took pride have done the country proud and continued its long tradition of peaceful resistance.

But it was only a first step. Where do we go now, those who believe this country's freedoms and institutions must be safeguarded from a dangerous demagogue? What do we do? While it might be momentarily satisfying to produce memes about small hands and chortle about bad combovers and call him Cheetolini and sniff that he's "not my President", the reality is that he is our President, and to deny it does no favors, puts us in sorry league with those who peddle "alternative facts", a phrase which here means lies. Lies, bald-faced and unrepentant. We must not tell lies, nor must we waste time on pettish insults that are easily ignored and feed into the idea that we are spoiled children having a tantrum.

We must fight. We must keep marching. We must keep calling and writing and faxing. Those of us with any means of locomotion must camp outside our congressperson's office when we can, anxiety and fatigue be damned. It's a hardship, and unfair, but we're not shaking off a niggling inconvenience. This is a fight to protect who we are as a nation. I've got my writing fingers limbered and some envelopes and some stamps, and I've got my representative's district office address and Mapquest. It's so little; I am so little, and it might come to nothing, but I have to try. I don't want to look back in ten years or in twenty and be ashamed. I do not want to wish that I had done differently.

I can just hear my mother now. How she would chortle, sneer that I am just being melodramatic. Maybe I am. I hope I am. But I would rather be melodramatic and wrong than apathetic and right. I would rather be embarrassed than crushed beneath the heel of a despot.

I must try to stand even though I cannot walk.
laguera25: Dug from UP! (Default)
( Jan. 26th, 2012 08:10 pm)
Dear Georgia,

I realize that some of you are butthurt that there is a black man in the White House, but are you really so threatened by this fact that you're lobbying to have him banned from the ballot in Georgia on the grounds that he isn't a real American citizen?

I'm sure this will go a long way towards convincing the rest of the world that the state isn't a backwards, pig-ignorant backwater full of rubes, racists, and xenophobes. Stay classy, Georgia. Way to preserve those 'Murrikan freedoms you hold to as tightly as you hold your shotgun and your can of Bud. After all, what's more American than a ballot with one choice on it?
For the first time in two years, I overdrew my secondary account today thanks to usurious ATM fees and double-dipping. An expected deposit has yet to post, and because it wasn't there, I had insufficient funds to cover...a balance inquiry. I'm not too worried yet since it's possible the funds won't post until tomorrow, but if they're not there by Monday, then that means that some retiree in Cocoa Beach just got an assload of money. This would be a very, very bad turn of events, as that money was my safety net should the government fail to reach an agreement on the debt crisis by Tuesday.

The current American financial crisis has some Europeans capering in glee at the prospect of the arrogant colossus that has so snidely and airily dictated global policies to them getting its comeuppance, and given our history of cultural imperialism and posturing on the global stage at every opportunity, the dispassionate observer in me cannot fault them. The American in me wants to tell them to get fucked, and to ungallantly point out that if we collapse, then a lot of other economies are coming with us, at least temporarily. Europe will survive, of course; it thrived long before we arrived to steal all the toys in the pram, and it will weather our collapse, but make no mistake that our economic death throes will cast ripples across the pond that will make for a bumpy few months for the EU.

Of course, the fellow who so glibly pointed out our impending collapse and opined, "You reap what you sow," is also of the opinion that our country is weak because there are too many "defective"(sick and disabled)people draining it of its resources. According to him, we should be more selective in whom we attempt to save with medical care and intervention, and then maybe our health care wouldn't be a disorganized ruin. If we just let the cripples who won't be able to work die, we would improve the overall health and stability of our nation.

Yes, I'm often tempted to punch him in the nuts through the Internet, but I resist the impulse because I know nothing good will come of it, and there is no point in disrupting the forum with an argument that will explode into a flamewar and solve nothing in the end. Still, the impulse is there. I quell it by imagining that Till or Rammstein's secret superhero does it for me. With a smile.

My Calliope interstitial is done, but LJ, while in far better shape now than it was yesterday afternoon, is still wonky(I have to refresh my flist four times for it to load fully, for instance), and so I will hold it until tomorrow.

And because I want to end on a positive note:

A Sharp-Dressed Man )

He makes that suit look good.
For the first time in two years, I overdrew my secondary account today thanks to usurious ATM fees and double-dipping. An expected deposit has yet to post, and because it wasn't there, I had insufficient funds to cover...a balance inquiry. I'm not too worried yet since it's possible the funds won't post until tomorrow, but if they're not there by Monday, then that means that some retiree in Cocoa Beach just got an assload of money. This would be a very, very bad turn of events, as that money was my safety net should the government fail to reach an agreement on the debt crisis by Tuesday.

The current American financial crisis has a some Europeans capering in glee at the prospect of the arrogant colossus that has so snidely and airily dictated global policies to them getting its comeuppance, and given our history of cultural imperialism and posturing on the global stage at every opportunity, the dispassionate observer in me cannot fault them. The American in me wants to tell them to get fucked, and to ungallantly point out that if we collapse, then a lot of other economies are coming with us, at least temporarily. Europe will survive, of course; it thrived long before we arrived to steal all the toys in the pram, and it will weather our collapse, but make no mistake that our economic death throes will cast ripples across the pond that will make for a bumpy few months for the EU.

Of course, the fellow who so glibly pointed out our impending collapse and opined, "You reap what you sow," is also of the opinion that our country is weak because there are too many "defective"(sick and disabled)people draining it of its resources. According to him, we should be more selective in whom we attempt to save with medical care and intervention, and then maybe our health care wouldn't be a disorganized ruin. If we just let the cripples who won't be able to work die, we would improve the overall health and stability of our nation.

Yes, I'm often tempted to punch him in the nuts through the Internet, but I resist the impulse because I know nothing good will come of it, and there is no point in disrupting the forum with an argument that will explode into a flamewar and solve nothing in the end. Still, the impulse is there. I quell it by imagining that Till or Rammstein's secret superhero does it for me. With a smile.

My Calliope interstitial is done, but LJ, while in far better shape now than it was yesterday afternoon, is still wonky(I have to refresh my flist four times for it to load fully, for instance), and so I will hold it until tomorrow.

And because I want to end on a positive note:

A Sharp-Dressed Man )

He makes that suit look good.
According to the Internet, three "long" paragraphs is now considered tl;dr. Oh, language, how I will miss you when we are reduced to monosyllabic grunting and chatspeak. In the meantime, I proudly accept the title of verbose windbag.

Yesterday, someone on [profile] rammstein_pimp reported that the Rockclan forums had been closed and wondered if Pilgrim was responsible for its closure, and some Rammfen braced for a huge fannish backlash because of the forum's popularity, but thusfar, no one has reacted to the closure. Not a peep. Not even a "meh" or a "That's too bad." So, either the closure was temporarily and the site has reopened(I have never visited it, nor do I intend to), or no one has noticed the closure of a popular site, or no one cares, or Rammfen is showing restraint and waiting for the facts to emerge, or the conspiracy theorists are correct in their assumption that Pilgrim possesses a squad of black-ops goons that ruthlessly quashes dissenters and agitators by issuing gag orders and hacking servers and lurking in fans' privet hedges to ensure they don't have any authorized material or aren't maligning them on the Internet. I'm going to go with Option A for the time being, as after extensive Googling, I have found no mention of the site's closure anywhere.

I suppose the absolute silence could be a point in the conspiracy theorists' favor, but I'm not ready to crunch that granola just yet.

I hope Rammstein announces the U.S. dates soon so I can calculate just how much pasta and how many Hot Pockets I'll be choking down. Assuming, of course, that I haven't starved to death because the government can't resolve the budgetary crisis.

Dear Mr. President,

Put your dick back in your pants and work for the good of your country, not your party and your evaporating chances for re-election.

Dear Sen. Boehner,

Put your dick back in your pants and work for the good of your country, not the top one percent of wage-earners in your party.

American politics have descended past the level of kindergarten contretemps, and it's embarrassing.
According to the Internet, three "long" paragraphs is now considered tl;dr. Oh, language, how I will miss you when we are reduced to monosyllabic grunting and chatspeak. In the meantime, I proudly accept the title of verbose windbag.

Yesterday, someone on [livejournal.com profile] rammstein_pimp reported that the Rockclan forums had been closed and wondered if Pilgrim was responsible for its closure, and some Rammfen braced for a huge fannish backlash because of the forum's popularity, but thusfar, no one has reacted to the closure. Not a peep. Not even a "meh" or a "That's too bad." So, either the closure was temporarily and the site has reopened(I have never visited it, nor do I intend to), or no one has noticed the closure of a popular site, or no one cares, or Rammfen is showing restraint and waiting for the facts to emerge, or the conspiracy theorists are correct in their assumption that Pilgrim possesses a squad of black-ops goons that ruthlessly quashes dissenters and agitators by issuing gag orders and hacking servers and lurking in fans' privet hedges to ensure they don't have any authorized material or aren't maligning them on the Internet. I'm going to go with Option A for the time being, as after extensive Googling, I have found no mention of the site's closure anywhere.

I suppose the absolute silence could be a point in the conspiracy theorists' favor, but I'm not ready to crunch that granola just yet.

I hope Rammstein announces the U.S. dates soon so I can calculate just how much pasta and how many Hot Pockets I'll be choking down. Assuming, of course, that I haven't starved to death because the government can't resolve the budgetary crisis.

Dear Mr. President,

Put your dick back in your pants and work for the good of your country, not your party and your evaporating chances for re-election.

Dear Sen. Boehner,

Put your dick back in your pants and work for the good of your country, not the top one percent of wage-earners in your party.

American politics have descended past the level of kindergarten contretemps, and it's embarrassing.
Government Might Default If Debt Ceiling Isn't Raised.

Essentially, we've spent our way into a tremendous sinkhole of debt by pursuing this endless "war on terror", and the government is about to default on its bills unless they get an influx of cash or raise the debt ceiling. The Democrats want to raise taxes on the wealthiest one percent to make up the shortfall, and the Republicans are digging in their heels. They've been stink-eyeing Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security for years, but they've always been considered sacred cows because so many voters are old folks on Medicare and SS, and both sides know what would happen if they were threatened.

Well, last week, the President announced that cuts to these entitlements were on the table because if the country doesn't save money and raise the debt ceiling by August 2nd, it would be officially in default and unable to pay its debts. If that happened, then SS benefits would not go out, presumably because the government either wouldn't have the money, or because its available funds were diverted to the war effort.

So, it's like this:

Government Accountant: Oh, NOES! We're running out of monies.

President: Since you won't let me end the war, I'mma need some money from you rich people.

Rep: OMG, HDU! You can't expect hard-working Americans to support the poor. ~flamewar~

Dem: Goddammit, you can't expect the poor and middle-class to subsidize everything while you eat caviar.

President~facepalm~: All right, but we really need money or everyone is screwed, so I'm putting SS, Medicare, and Medicaid up for cuts.

Dems: HDU! FLAMES! FLAMES on the sides of our faces! Are you trying to get booted out of office?

Reps: Yeehaw! Finally, we can flush these leeches!

Dems: Fuck you, Reps! Fuck you, Mr. President!

Poor people: What about us? How are we supposed to eat?

President: We all have to make sacrifices, LOLZ!

Poor people: >:X
Government Might Default If Debt Ceiling Isn't Raised.

Essentially, we've spent our way into a tremendous sinkhole of debt by pursuing this endless "war on terror", and the government is about to default on its bills unless they get an influx of cash or raise the debt ceiling. The Democrats want to raise taxes on the wealthiest one percent to make up the shortfall, and the Republicans are digging in their heels. They've been stink-eyeing Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security for years, but they've always been considered sacred cows because so many voters are old folks on Medicare and SS, and both sides know what would happen if they were threatened.

Well, last week, the President announced that cuts to these entitlements were on the table because if the country doesn't save money and raise the debt ceiling by August 2nd, it would be officially in default and unable to pay its debts. If that happened, then SS benefits would not go out, presumably because the government either wouldn't have the money, or because its available funds were diverted to the war effort.

So, it's like this:

Government Accountant: Oh, NOES! We're running out of monies.

President: Since you won't let me end the war, I'mma need some money from you rich people.

Rep: OMG, HDU! You can't expect hard-working Americans to support the poor. ~flamewar~

Dem: Goddammit, you can't expect the poor and middle-class to subsidize everything while you eat caviar.

President~facepalm~: All right, but we really need money or everyone is screwed, so I'm putting SS, Medicare, and Medicaid up for cuts.

Dems: HDU! FLAMES! FLAMES on the sides of our faces! Are you trying to get booted out of office?

Reps: Yeehaw! Finally, we can flush these leeches!

Dems: Fuck you, Reps! Fuck you, Mr. President!

Poor people: What about us? How are we supposed to eat?

President: We all have to make sacrifices, LOLZ!

Poor people: >:X
Since I cannot rely on the government not to leave me and seventy million other old, sick, and disabled people swinging in the breeze while they squabble over the debt ceiling, I have taken steps to soften the blow as much as possible. If it works, then not much will change during this political dick joust; if the government sets aside its petty political maneuvering and point-scoring machinations in advance of the upcoming elections and does what is best for the people, then I will have a tidy windfall for my Rammstein fund and upcoming dream trip to Berlin.

If it doesn't work and the government refuses to send out its customary check on August 2nd, then Roomie and I will begin to starve. The lights will go out, as will the air conditioner and the phone. So will the Internet. We will have a prepaid cellphone, but if the battery dies, then there will be no means of contacting the outside world. The car has enough gas for a week, but once that is gone, there will be no way to go to the market or the hospital in case of emergency. There will be enough standby/emergency cash for a few weeks' worth of food, but with no power, there will be no way to cook it and no means to draw water from the well for bathing. No money for the coin laundromat or the car insurance or the tag renewal fees or the mandatory car inspection. No money for anything.

But hey, at least the fatcats and the corporations won't have to pay a penny more in income tax.

I know a lot of people are disappointed in President Obama, and I am, too. For all his rosy rhetoric of making the hard choices and standing firm for the weak and vulnerable, he has proven far too willing to sell them out under the guise of compromise. He's so desperate not to be seen as a pig-headed upstart hardass that he cheerfully concedes the safety and welfare of his most helpless constituents in order to foment his cherished perception of himself as a great unifier of men. Last week, he compared his decision to place Medicare, Medicaid, and other essential "entitlements" to the poor on the chopping block to Lincoln's decision to allow slavery in the border states in order to preserve a crumbling union. He essentially said, "Sure, slavery is morally reprehensible, but at the time, it was more important to preserve the union and win the war so that all slaves would be free in the end."

That's a lofty, noble sentiment, Mr. President, but I'm sure it didn't do a damn bit of good to the slaves who suffered and died beneath the lash in the meantime. Sacrifice always sounds good to those who benefit from it.

So, in essence, my President, who three years ago, promised to help me work for a better life and a better standard of care is now telling me, "Sure, seventy million of you are going to suffer, and some of you are going to die, but know that your sacrifice will benefit the country as a whole, and America appreciates your sacrifice."

No, it doesn't. Most of America isn't going to notice my "sacrifice". Hell, most who do are probably going to dance a jig and crow that "It's about time we cut off the leeches." Besides, the money you save by telling your broken and poor to do without won't even begin to staunch the financial hemorrhaging, and little of it will benefit the ordinary people of this country. It will feed the war machine that never seems to tire and fill the coffers of special interest groups and line the pockets of lobbyists. It will not fix the roads or the schools or inner-city hospitals. My privation will not uplift another deserving soul. It will simply make the rich richer.

I'm disappointed in Obama, but I'm more disappointed in my government as a whole. In a government that spends billions on a stagnant war effort while telling the poor to lick the salt from the road for sustenance. In the Democrats for failing to stand firm until the eleventh hour, and then only because you realized your President would take the blame if Social Security checks failed to go out for the first time in history under his watch. In the Republicans for refusing to demand that the wealthiest citizens accept their fair share of the tax burden, and for telling the sick and disabled of this country that they should do the decent thing and die instead of expecting the rich to downsize to a fifty-foot yacht.

I'm disappointed that the beloved and celebrated myth of my country as a haven for the tired and oppressed now seems so far from the truth.
Since I cannot rely on the government not to leave me and seventy million other old, sick, and disabled people swinging in the breeze while they squabble over the debt ceiling, I have taken steps to soften the blow as much as possible. If it works, then not much will change during this political dick joust; if the government sets aside its petty political maneuvering and point-scoring machinations in advance of the upcoming elections and does what is best for the people, then I will have a tidy windfall for my Rammstein fund and upcoming dream trip to Berlin.

If it doesn't work and the government refuses to send out its customary check on August 2nd, then Roomie and I will begin to starve. The lights will go out, as will the air conditioner and the phone. So will the Internet. We will have a prepaid cellphone, but if the battery dies, then there will be no means of contacting the outside world. The car has enough gas for a week, but once that is gone, there will be no way to go to the market or the hospital in case of emergency. There will be enough standby/emergency cash for a few weeks' worth of food, but with no power, there will be no way to cook it and no means to draw water from the well for bathing. No money for the coin laundromat or the car insurance or the tag renewal fees or the mandatory car inspection. No money for anything.

But hey, at least the fatcats and the corporations won't have to pay a penny more in income tax.

I know a lot of people are disappointed in President Obama, and I am, too. For all his rosy rhetoric of making the hard choices and standing firm for the weak and vulnerable, he has proven far too willing to sell them out under the guise of compromise. He's so desperate not to be seen as a pig-headed upstart hardass that he cheerfully concedes the safety and welfare of his most helpless constituents in order to foment his cherished perception of himself as a great unifier of men. Last week, he compared his decision to place Medicare, Medicaid, and other essential "entitlements" to the poor on the chopping block to Lincoln's decision to allow slavery in the border states in order to preserve a crumbling union. He essentially said, "Sure, slavery is morally reprehensible, but at the time, it was more important to preserve the union and win the war so that all slaves would be free in the end."

That's a lofty, noble sentiment, Mr. President, but I'm sure it didn't do a damn bit of good to the slaves who suffered and died beneath the lash in the meantime. Sacrifice always sounds good to those who benefit from it.

So, in essence, my President, who three years ago promised to help me work for a better life and a better standard of care, is now telling me, "Sure, seventy million of you are going to suffer, and some of you are going to die, but know that your sacrifice will benefit the country as a whole, and America appreciates your sacrifice."

No, it doesn't. Most of America isn't going to notice my "sacrifice". Hell, most who do are probably going to dance a jig and crow that "It's about time we cut off the leeches." Besides, the money you save by telling your broken and poor to do without won't even begin to staunch the financial hemorrhaging, and little of it will benefit the ordinary people of this country. It will feed the war machine that never seems to tire and fill the coffers of special interest groups and line the pockets of lobbyists. It will not fix the roads or the schools or inner-city hospitals. My privation will not uplift another deserving soul. It will simply make the rich richer.

I'm disappointed in Obama, but I'm more disappointed in my government as a whole. In a government that spends billions on a stagnant war effort while telling the poor to lick the salt from the road for sustenance. In the Democrats for failing to stand firm until the eleventh hour, and then only because you realized your President would take the blame if Social Security checks failed to go out for the first time in history under his watch. In the Republicans for refusing to demand that the wealthiest citizens accept their fair share of the tax burden, and for telling the sick and disabled of this country that they should do the decent thing and die instead of expecting the rich to downsize to a fifty-foot yacht.

I'm disappointed that the beloved and celebrated myth of my country as a haven for the tired and oppressed now seems so far from the truth.
Thanks to the NY/MIA crossover on A&E, I got a lovely Flack fix. Eddie does so much with so little, and he's a joy to watch. That, coupled with my unbridled lust for Det. Flack, overpowered the manky miasma of Horatio's smarm.

Also in the fandom, Mr. "I Think Bush's Speeches Are Interesting, and I'm Not Even American" was back last night with this gem:

His lame speech? What about the 20,000 additional troops he's sending into his failed project? It's not exactly what most people want to hear, but it's important to have an idea on the current events.

And this is world-changing because? Everyone with a firing synapse could see this coming. And yes, the speech was lame. It gave no timetable and no concrete solutions to the problem of Iraq because Bush and his cronies refuse to admit that a problem exists. The office of the President may still hold glamour for some people outside the U.S, but for most reasonable and reasoning Americans, Bush has made it a joke.

Besides, it's a fan board for CSI:NY, and folks have a right to kvetch as much as they want without Mr. Elitist Asshat waving his prodigious Iwang in their faces.

Supernatural was okay this week, but I'm disappointed that they've ditched their Monster of the Week format for Sam's Angsty Emo of the Week. Dean does emotional conflict very well, but Sam comes off as a whiny, entitled tool. By running off on his own in search of Answers, he put Dean in an excruciating position and almost got them both killed. When will he learn that Dean loves him as much, if not more, than he loved their father, and even if he can't protect Sam from this ridiculously contrived Demon War destiny, he's still going to try because that's a brother's job?

Gordon is a fabulous foil because he's not completely Bad. He's an ass, and misguided, but he's not doing what he does for personal gain. He's doing it because like the Winchesters, he thinks monsters deserve to die. His definition of "monster" is just broader than that of Sam and Dean's.

And who doesn't think that Gordon's roadhouse connection will be Jo?

And lastly a pimp for Part I of The Danse Macabre
So, George W. Bush has ordered the networks to bend over and drop trou during their big premiere weeks in the foolhardy belief that no one will be smart emough to change the channel the nanosecond they see his grinning, gormless visage. If I were CBS, NBC, ABC, and Fox, I would have politely told him to rim himself and continued my programming as scheduled.

Ostensibly, he has asked for the time to discuss Hurricane Katrina and the mind-croggling clusterfuck that is the recovery effort, but in truth, he is no doubt going to use the time to foist as much of the blame for this embarrassing debacle onto other shoulders. He'll hem and haw and shuffle his feet and make asinine comparisons to 9/11 in an effort to draw upon the patriotic zealotry of his dwindling supporters, and when the tough questions come, he'll straighten his tie and point the finger at everyone but himself. He will call it an "act of God."

Yes, Mr, President, a hurricane is an act of God-a powerful, terrifying, and awe-inspiring act-but so, sir, is the act of procreation, and you seem perfectly willing to legislate and control that. And even if a hurricane cannot be turned aside, you can certainly control how you respond in its wake, and the sad fact is, you did nothing at all. You did nothing until the media and the American public roused themselves from their collective stupor and started asking questions not related to what poor Sharif the garbage collector wears under his turban. And then you only sent government troops to protect the interests of Wal-mart and the rich folk.

So don't you dare stand there behind that podium and tell me you did the best you could. You didn't. When the tsunami flattened entire nations earlier this year, US aid was on the ground in twenty-four hours, and God bless those volunteers. If you can get humanitarian aid across the globe in twenty-four hours, you should have had workers and troops in Louisiana a Mississippi in twelve. It wasn't logistics or lack of resources that hampered you. It was indifference, and had the media not jumped up and down and started decrying the bumbling, people would still be clinging to their rooftops.

So make your speech, but for Christ's sake, hurry up. I want my CSI.



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