Bits n’ pieces

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I’m sure everyone has already heard that Obama throws $75 billion lifeline to homeowners with our tax dollars. I don’t like the bailout of homeowners.  I feel bad for them.   I really do.   If your house went down in value and now you owe more than the house is worth, well that’s the market trying to reach its equilibrium.  You bought at the wrong time or borrowed too much.  If you took out a home equity loan to buy toys and electronics and now can’t meet your obligation that’s not my problem . People need to be held accountable for bad decisions that they made so economic evolution can be allowed to run its course.  There shouldn’t be any general bailout for homeowners who got in over their heads. Homeowners should declare bankruptcy and try to get a workout.  Bankruptcy judges should be allowed to reduce the debt as I believe they can generally with any debt during a bankruptcy.  If some lenders broke the law or acted unfairly then punish the lender.  I don’t like the idea that people who bought houses they couldn’t afford may be able to keep them even though they still can’t afford them while I’ve done the right thing and bought a smaller house that I can afford.

And since we’re talking about tax dollars being spent how about some more corporate welfare for KBR so the can deliver poisoned food and water to our guys and gals overseas? WTF is wrong with our government. Is slopping the war profiteers more important than the safety of our own family members?    “Saying they want more answers, U.S. Sens. Birch Bayh, D-Ind., and Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., on Wednesday said Houston-based contractor KBR Inc. allowed soldiers to be exposed to the chemical for more than two months even though KBR knew the site was contaminated, according to The Associate Press.” Bastards all of them.  Is this the best we can do for our military? Piss me off.

I saw a good article in Newsweek that reflected what I’ve always said, ‘That the myth of upward mobility is just that, a myth.’  Mr. Kotkin writes a good opinion piece.

But from the 1940s to the 1970s, the American middle class enjoyed steadily increasing incomes that stayed on a par with those in the upper classes. Since then, wages for most workers have lagged behind. This disparity is strikingly evident in income data compiled by Citigroup, which shows that the top 1 percent of U.S. households now account for as much of the nation’s total wealth—7 percent—as they did in 1913, when monopolistic business practices were the order of the day.  Their net worth is now greater than that of the bottom 90 percent of the nation’s households combined. The top 20 percent of taxpayers realized nearly three quarters of all income gains from 1979 to 2000.Even getting a college degree no longer guarantees upward mobility. The implicit American contract has always been that with education and hard work, anyone can get ahead. But since 2000, young people with college educations—except those who go to elite colleges and graduate schools—have seen their wages decline.

And why when I point out the fact that government policies have lead to these disparities am I accused of waging class warfare?  I’d say the 1% of the folks who have 90% of the income are the ones waging class warfare, not the folks losing their jobs, homes, cars and health insurance.   WAKE UP PEOPLE!

Smart little kid developed a survival shelter made from packing peanuts, plastic sheeting, tubes and special connectors.  It snaps togethere like an erector set.  This kid won $10,000 for his design.  He wants to grow up to be a biomechanical engineer or a geriatric psychiatrist.  Me too.

iglooObviously shaped like a geodesic dome.  Here’s the link to the newspaper article survival shelter.

Not sure if you heard, but there are some economic related riots in Russia.  It seems that used car salemen import used Japanese cars.  Well the Kremlin didn’t like this so they slapped down some steep tariffs on therussia3_190 imports.   The Russian used car salesmen, seeing how their livelihoods were threatened organized protests.  The Kremlin responded with force.  This picture is the shape of things to come in the US. Prepare yourself to lay low and become anonymous.  Don’t be a big mouth or the government will push you to the ground and drive your face into the pavement with its knee.

BTW the 7.62 * 39 ammo that I was paying $4.99 a box for has jumped up to $6.95.  That’s a 20% increase!!

What do you folks think of this cartoon?

deadmonkeyI don’t think it’s racist.  Just me though and I’m not black.  If anything I think that I’m more sensitive than most about diversity and what not.  When I saw this cartoon I thought the artist was saying that the stimulus bill is so bad it was written by a monkey(s).  I thought that the tshirt with a monkey on it that said Obama 08′ was in terrible taste and was racist.  This cartoon, nope.  What do you think?

And an interesting op-ed on unchecked military spending.  We are all now reaping the rewards of the confluence of the mlitary, private industry, government and Big M Media.  Big M Media gets you right where they want you with shows like: The Unit, 24 and now Homeland Security.  It’s all BS.  It all boils down to getting money out of our pockets and abrogate our constitutional rights.  We have too many foreign bases.  Our fingers are in too many cookie jars.  Our military is too large.  Being the biggest on the block makes us a target, makes us more likely to resort to military force and drains our coffers.

And  what’s up with Republicans who voted 100% against the stimulus bill now touting the $’s that will be delivered to their home districts.  This is just degenerate politics.

Went skiing.  It was a beautiful day.  It usually is when you get to ski.

w4Ski trail.  Nice huh?  It was a warm day so the snow was soft and squishy like mashed potatoes.  The trail in the top picture is actually really steep, could be a 30+ degree grade.  When the snow is soft though it’s real slow so you have to ski the steepest trails going.  I had so much fun going down this trail I think I skied back up another one or two times.

w5This is looking up another nice hill that’s great to ski down.  It was the same warm day so it’s possible to steer around the trees.  Both of these slopes face more or less north or northeast so they tend to have snow on them more consistently.

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5 Responses to “Bits n’ pieces”

  1. Country Mouse Says:

    I have mixed feelings about the cartoon. I get the “stimulus bill written by monkeys” slant – it could be that is all it meant. I also am well aware that our former president’s mug morphed very easily into that of a chimpanzee and he was VERY often portrayed as a chimp, as much to do with his facial expressions, as his policy. That said, for most of this countries history, African Americans were caricatured in the media as apes, and it used to be considered SCIENCE that Africans were sub-human, and genetically closer to apes than white peoples. I mean, this was taught as recently as our parents and grandparents generations.

    So, yeah, we’ve come a long way but that editorial cartoonist really needed a slap in the head for forgetting that very recent history, and even going there. And, I do believe in equal rights – if Obama should behave like a donkey’s ass, then the satirists just have every right to skewer him as they did Bush. He really shouldn’t get special treatment because he’s African American, and I wish clowns like Sharpton wouldn’t get in the middle of it because he has NO credibility.

    That’s just one white gals opinion. And, yes, I do think you’re WAY more tolerant/open minded than most of the survivalist sorts I read, and respect your opinion 🙂

  2. Abraham Says:

    Thanks Mouse. There are two sides to EVERY story.

  3. Mayberry Says:

    I took it as the bill was written by monkeys…. All the stuff going on right now….. It’s the definition of insanity. The government is off it’s rocker, and the people just ignore it, indulging in their drug of choice…… The march to fascism, communism, totalitarianism, or what ever “ism” one might want to call it, is frightening. Mostly because it’s being carried out in broad daylight, right under our noses, and the majority of sheeple WANT it! Things are about to get very interesting in the US of A……

  4. Abraham Says:

    Mayberry-
    It really is unreal. I think we’re about the same age having grown up in the 60’s and 70’s. It’s like a totally different USA now. I live in Mass. the governor here, who I did kind of like even though I didn’t vote for him, is raising the gas tax 19 cents a gallon. 19 cents a gallon!! People are hurting as bad as I’ve ever seen and the best the state of Mass can do is to raise the gas tax. It’s crazy. Imagine the thousands of people in Massachusetts alone last week who got laid off from their jobs and then the good governor says he is going to raise the gas tax.

    I have no doubt that we are fast approaching a tipping point or a breaking point or a flash point, but something is gonna give.

    Folks are gonna stop paying their mortgages. Why not if the Government will bail ya out. People are gonna stop paying property tax. People are gonna revolt.

  5. Mike Says:

    I just wanted to say that not everyone who is in housing trouble is irresponsible and deserves what happens.

    My cousin bought a small townhouse that was well within her means at the time. Her mortgage is fixed rate and reasonable. She’s been there for about five years. However, now she is a single mother with twin toddlers. Getting pregnant was deliberate, and at the time was also within her financial means. Things change. You can argue the merits and problems of giving her help all you want, but it would be wrong to think that it’s ‘her fault’ and that anything short of clairvoyance would have allowed her to stay out of this situation. She’s a 9/11 survivor, and since then has taken my prepping advice with a very serious outlook. She tries to plan for everything that can threaten her and her children. She is not frivolous. She is educated and intelligent, and prudent. However she will now suffer BECAUSE of the incompetence/greed/insanity that has caused this financial crisis.

    That said, I’m against all forms of bailout, my cousin is in a shitty situation not of her making, but hey, that’s life. But to throw blame at her is not only unfair, it’s just wrong.

    Granted, for those people who did get variable mortgages they can’t afford who thought they were ‘working the system’, I say let them deal with the consequences. But if we are going to give trillions to various corporate interests, I’m not going to begrudge $75 billion for homeowners. I don’t think that it should be passed, but in the wake of the TARP and ARRA, it’s a drop in the bucket.

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