Today we're going to honor what I like to call "Well, DUH!" reports from the newspapers and magazines I read and "enjoy". These are stories that pretend to be exposing some horrific fact of life to the eager public. Naturally, for those of us who haven't traded in our brains for the opportunity to watch another of those silly and mindless "Reality TV" shows, its just more old news.
First up is a story from the LA Times Business section. The headline's breathless prose is, "SEC Sends Latest Jolt to Analysts' Credibility" with the sub heading of, "Wall Street: Regulators say more than a quarter of analysts surveyed bought at low prices stocks they later touted to investors." Okay, so what exactly is there about this news that justified killing innocent trees in order to tell us what we already knew?
The only surprise is that a quarter of those surveyed admitted that their morals are no higher than Clinton's when he's alone with a female intern or Bush when he's breathing.
You and I both know that the other three quarters simply lied on the SEC's survey. ( 1 )
File this next one under Hee Hee Hee!
Reading "Deficit? It Rings a Bell" informs us that exactly what this space has been warning everyone about is now a fact of life. For months, we have been warning that the surplus didn't really exist and, thus, any budgets predicated on that surplus was foolish, at the very best. When the Resident trotted out his tax cut plan (having changed the so-called need for the cuts from one of the government having too much revenue to we need the cut because the economy is tanking - a self-fulfilling prophecy), Another Perspective stated very clearly that these insane gifts for the wealthy were going to cause this nation great pains.
Well, who would'a thunk it? Here we are, just some bozo out in the desert who happily told anyone who would listen that any tax cuts should wait until after every year's budget was passed, and, lo and behold, we were right. Suddenly, the promised steep decline in the market value of over inflated tech and dot.com stocks has caused the market to drop like a rock. Suddenly, Americans are faced with the reality that they aren't going to be millionaires through the market anytime soon. Suddenly, Americans are losing their jobs by the hundreds of thousands. Finally, Americans are suddenly very aware that they had best not continue the hedonistic and very Republican greed filled shopping spree that they have been on for far too long.
What does all this insanity end up causing? Just one year after a budget offered by Clinton that was fully funded and was still paying down our still enormous federal deficit, your Congressmen and the Resident must BORROW $38 BILLION TO PAY JUST THIS YEAR'S TAX REFUNDS!!!!!!!!!!! That's right, gentle readers. Your government is borrowing money to pay for a tax cut. Does anyone else out there notice the absolute stupidity in this? Can't these idiots just go back to the drawing board and proclaim the tax cuts and refunds over as of this year? Can't they just swallow hard (pun intended) and inform the rich that they will just have to get used to paying their fair share of the budget again?
As always, folks, not one newspaper editorial or TV talking head or anywhere or anyone else is speaking this truth. Instead, all of these fools are mouthing the party line of making up the shortage through "cuts in the budget" and zeroing out social programs and borrowing Medicare and Social Security funds, moves that the Resident very firmly stated would never happen. Gosh (your writer gasped), does that mean that the Resident is a liar and a half wit? Well, DUH!!!!!!! ( 2 )
Next up, "Ethical Short Circuit", informs us that, here in California, the same people that our governor put in charge of "fixing" the massive damage that energy deregulation has caused, may have acted illegally by using their inside information and contacts to buy up stocks in the very same public utilities that they were negotiating multi-billion dollar, long-term contracts with. My jaw just dropped to the floor.
Folks, our Democratic Governor has refused any and all calls for a firm and citizen centered reaction to the organized theft of the public's funds through the newest version of another insane and crooked deregulation scam. Instead of simply taking control of all assets controlled by PG&E, SCE, and San Diego Gas and Electric using the state's right to "kill" a corporation who has become a drain on the people (and what better description could be found of these three organized rip-offs?), he has spent the state's tax revenues to bail these swindlers out.
Now, other than the fact that he is wasting billions of taxpayer's dollars to bail out his friends in the energy industry (shades of the Residence and the Chaney Administration), he must have vetted the integrity of those he hired to organize this bail-out as well as his spokesmen within his own administration. You would think so, wouldn't you?
Well, now that it has been shown that at least five of the members of his appointed panel that negotiated the contracts with the state to buy future electricity were also using that inside information to make a bit of an illegal profit, all while also working for SCE. Naturally, we are now discovering that even Davis' press secretary and acting director of communications, Steve Mavglio, was buying $12,000 worth of Calpine stock at the exact time that his boss was negotiating multi-million dollar contracts with the same corporation. Can you spell "corruption" boys and girls? I knew you could.
Now that this criminal behavior has been made public, of course Mr. Mavglio will either resign his position or at least divest himself of this obvious conflict of interest and restore the integrity of the highest office in the state?!? Well, DUH!!!!!! ( 3 )
For those of us who understand the reality that there are no good guys left in the vast majority of politics, we find further proof of that belief in the article "Bush Oil Victory Helped by Unlikely Ally". Here we learn that it's not just the Democrats who have rolled over and played dead like good little boys and girls beneath the "juggernaut" that is the Chaney Administration. Now we discover that organized labor, in the persons of the Teamsters and the building trades division of the AFL-CIO, have happily gone over to the dark side in using their lobbyists and treasuries to help the village idiot open the pristine Artic National Wildlife Refuge to the massive pollution that always follows drilling for and extracting petroleum.
That's right, boys and girls, these reporters and their editor apparently were shocked, I say, SHOCKED that organized labor would sell their souls to the lowest common denominator that we call our Resident, just to create a few hundred jobs.
Personally, the only thing that surprises me about this particular stellar event in the nation's long history of sleeping with the enemy is that they took so long to turn out the light and get down to business.
According to one Stanley White, spokesperson for Rep. Robert A. Brady of Pennsylvania, one of the Republicrats in Congress (but who pretends to be a Democrat when he is in public), the unions argued that, somehow, this destruction of one of the planet's last wild areas will create "hundreds of thousands of jobs". It will do no such thing, of course, since the projected oil reserves in the Refuge are less that five year's worth of drilling and the total that will be extracted will swamp the limited capacities of the ports where oil is transferred from pipeline to ships. Without the ability to ship even what is currently being sucked out of the Earth in Alaska for shipment to Asia, any jobs that will be created will be in Japan, China, Korea, or one of the other Asian nations that nearly all of the oil from Alaska is sold to.
This proves one very important point, gentle readers. There are lies, and damned lies, and then there is any moment when politicians and union leaders are talking. ( 4 & 5 )
That's my short list of the winners of this occasion's "Well, DUH!!!" awards. You can play the game, too. Just read the paper or watch the news and see just how often reporters breathlessly tell you exactly what you knew all along. It stinks out there and the only solution being offered is to watch some bozos eating fried rats. What a country!!!
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