Apparently, the Democrats have taken to calling their Republican counterparts on the Hill the "GOP Taliban". Gentle readers, I must object. First we murder thousands of these Stone-Age Taliban by blowing them up using our most advanced aircraft. Then we send in our own version of the clowns, the Northern Alliance, to kill some more of them. Then we take away their control of the entire nation of Afghanistan and make them live the life of guerillas again. Then, to add an infinite insult to all of their injuries, we compare them favorably to Republicans?!? I mean, when is enough just simply enough? ( 1 )
Referring to the moron's habit of spending so much time at his Texas ranch, David Sibley, a Texas state senator, proclaimed, "Superman has his Fortress of Solitude, and I think that's analogous." Frankly, the moron has no need of going to Texas looking for solitude. If solitude can be defined as being all alone in an empty place, then he has only to visit his little cranium and he'll find all the solitude he needs right there. ( 2 )
In a true example of the term "irony" or perhaps just "propaganda", this was the lead sentence to a short article about the latest round of talks in the World Trade Organization; "In the spirit of post-9/11 harmony, haggling delegates of the World Trade Organization last week hammered out a plan in Doha, Qatar, that commits the WTO's 144 members - now including China, to expand global trade by 2003." It goes on to note that these agreements make losers out of labor unions and various American industries like steel and drugs. What this article failed to include as coming out on the short end of the WTO's nasty little stick is the environment, worker's rights, the poor, the sick, the young, the uneducated, the indigenous people's rights, children's rights, national and state sovereignty, and on and on. ( 3 )
Knowing Daddy Bush's proclivity for saying what's true before correcting it with a lie, here's what he had to say about King Fahd of Saudi Arabia; "An extraordinarily cooperative, determined, principled monarch. He's a wonderful man. I have known him personally. I have known him in a most respectful way." I suppose being on your knees before a follower of Wahhabi Islam and one of your oil rich owners could be termed "personally" and "respectful". Frankly, the entire "Special Advertising Section" of the Newsweek issue is only a worshipful paean to just another wealthy and powerful oil baron. The reason for it being published, of course, is simply that the moron and his gang desperately needs to keep folks like this happy and feeling duly worshipped so that they don't raise the price of oil while we're murdering a few tens of thousands of Afghan civilians.
Oh, and by the by. If you get a chance to see this silliness for yourself, check out the picture of that senile old fool Ronald Reagan coming at the King as if he wants to hump his leg. The King, for his part, has his arms wide open and his eyes averted and tightly shut. Me thinks it was a tale for Penthouse in the making - "One time, after having to look at my shrewish, controlling, and anorexic wife once too often, I was seduced by a wealthy and powerful Arab."( 4 )
Oh, God but I do love the superficial and reckless way that the moron and his gang of simpletons think (if I can misuse that word in this case). Case in point is the reality that a very large portion of the world detests America. They hate us so strongly for one reason and one reason only; we can behave in such evil, selfish, self-important and murderous way when we so choose. One has only to look at the hundreds of thousands of children and elderly we have silently massacred in Iraq through our sanctions and the hundreds we killed in Sudan when our useless and clueless CIA declared a pharmaceutical plant to be a poison gas factory and the thousands of innocent civilians we slaughtered in Panama and the hundreds who died when we used the USS Arizona to fling twelve hundred pound bombs indiscriminately around Beirut and, well, the list seems endless.
So, just what does the little moron and his pack of irresponsible and totalitarian hooligans intend to do to polish up the old national reputation? Why, they went right out and hired an advertising executive and designated her our new Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy. Just how silly is that?
Obviously, the gang that overthrew the American system of democratic government has no intention of actually behaving in any decent or intelligent way nor do they intend to become an equal member in the brotherhood of mankind. Instead, they have turned to the one art that has proven to be the only possible approach for Republicans as a party to appear as if it belongs anywhere outside Nazi Germany and that is through Madison Avenue's version of outright propaganda. This, my friends, is really, really sick!
Exactly what is this secretary, one Charlotte Beers, going to do to reassure the parents of an Iraqi child who died a slow, painful death caused directly by this nation's sanctions on medical equipment and drugs? What, exactly, is Ms Beers going to say to the child who lost both arms when they picked up an anti-personnel landmine that we carelessly left lying around in Kosovo or Iraq or Vietnam or Korea or anywhere else? What, I have to ask, can this woman do to appease the millions upon millions of human beings that Corporate America has murdered through pollution or by arming the governments that prey on their own population?
Ms Beers can only do exactly what she has always done in advertising and that is to lie and distract and cheat and misinform. Just exactly how long any of her future successes might last isn't something I would bet on, personally. As stupid as this administration is, the world is far smarter than an ex-advertising executive could ever hope to be. ( 5 )
Did you hear about the "compromise" that Congress worked out regarding the failure of privatized security firms and screeners at your local airports? Corporate America gets to continue to screw passengers and employees alike but now with some farcical federal oversight. What that means, of course, is that the people who will supposedly watch out for the employees and the safety of the passengers at all American airports will be just more political appointees who care far more about what Corporate America wants rather than what is best for you and me. If you doubt this, just check out the miserable recent track records of the FDA and the FCC and the FAA and the SEC and the USDA and the Surgeon General and, well, you get the picture.
In as much as Corporate America will be satisfied with keeping costs down (very low wages and zero benefits to everyone but the sluts in the suites who will be well rewarded for keeping those costs down), you might wonder if the jobs themselves are really so bad and so poorly compensated.
Consider this, if you will. The turn over rate, that is the number of employees being hired and then quitting or being fired within twelve months, is astounding. At New York JFK International, for every ten new hires, five will be gone within a year. At Houston Bush Intercontinental, for every ten employees hired, 25 more will have to be hired to make up for those extra who also leave. The worst place to be employed in security or as a screener is Lambert-St. Louis International where every single position has to be refilled over four times every year. That's an average employment term of just three months per new hire.
With that in mind, is it any wonder that, at Boston's Logan International Airport (which had a turn over rate of 200% as of June 2000), undercover Federal Aviation Administration agents were able to smuggle on board airplanes 102 guns, 49 dynamite bombs, 10 hand grenades, and 9 toy pistols.
When these insanities were investigated by the Government Accounting Office (GAO), what precise issues did they conclude were the causes for such lax security dilemmas? None other that low pay, poor training, and high turnover rates for the jobs. In fact, the report pointed out that nearly every single security position paid less than a job working the counter at your local fast food stop ($5.15 - $6 an hour for security as opposed to the $7 an hour that a fast food business at Logan International paid its employees TO START!!!!!!!!).
Just how forceful do you think that these politically connected weenies will be when the subject of pay and benefits and training arise and their employers in Corporate America flatly refuse to improve any of these areas? You and I both know that the issues will swept under the old rug until the next airplane full of hundreds of innocent Americans is crashed into the next target by terrorists availing themselves of the national sickness of greed and selfishness.
Want to know something that will turn your stomach just a bit more? How about the fact that the CEO of American Airlines, one Donald Carty, "earns" 180 times more money each year than the poor schlep that tries to keep your plane from blowing up or being flown into some stationary object? How about Gordon Bethune, CEO of Continental Airlines, who "earns" 260 times what an actual human being earns in security.
Compare Corporate America's idea of security Nirvana to the Netherlands situation. There, the average screener receives 40 hours of classroom training (12 at most in the USA), 24 hours of additional training every year (zero here), an average salary of $15 an hour and full benefits.
Gentle readers, in refusing to improve the security situation in all American airports, Congress has again proven what Ralph Nader said over and over during the 2000 election fiasco. There is absolutely no difference between the Republicans and Democrats. They are both completely owned and operated by and at the whim of Corporate America. The stupidity of the Rabid Right's "smaller government" is only a cover for allowing Corporate America to put your life in the maximum amount of danger in exchange for an increase in profits. There are simply too many areas of our lives that must be regulated and those regulations enforced by employees whose training and objective is your safety regardless of the effect on Corporate America's greedy bottom line. You life and the life of your family and friends should never be at the mercy of the sluts in the suites. Never! ( 6 )
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