Tuesday :: Oct 19, 2004

What would you prefer, a nuisance or an obsession?


by Duckman GR

What has happened to our country? Have we become a bunch of pansies, afraid, afraid, dammit, of some asshole clown in robes spouting religious dogma? Afraid of criticism, of protestors? Of Linda Ronstadt or Eddie Vedder? Did we go crying to FDR after Pearl Harbor?

No. We signed up to go get those back stabbing bastards! We dusted ourselves off, put out the fires, righted and patched the ships, and took care of business, THE NATION'S BUSINESS, not Halliburtons business, not GE's business, not Exxons business.

Now we want that tough talkin, horse ridin, plain speakin, okay okay, that smirking tool, to protect us? That vote stealing, vote suppressing, miserable failure to save us? All he needs is a robe and there'd be precious little difference between him and Osama. Neither one speaks much english, they both kill innocent people indiscriminately and without remorse, and they're both spoiled rich kids who never had to work a day of their lives to make it.

When I was young, I always thought the President was supposed to be smarter and tougher and sharkier than everybody else. I mean, do you think FDR lost many poker games? Jackson? LBJ? Hell no! But bush lost the first game he got into, with China (the P-3 incident), Putin has played him like the fool he is, bin Laden too, and the Saudi's must just hate those $53 barrels of oil.

So I ask, what would you prefer, spending all of your time and effort fighting a real but nebulous and relatively ineffective enemy all over the world, ratcheting up tension and pressure and misery worldwide (which includes the US of A, folks) or would you rather spend your time and effort making your life and your communities and your world a more productive, enjoyable, fruitful, livable place?

Would you rather spend your time duck (sic!) taping your house, or going shopping on the weekend, or both?

With rolls of duct tape and plastic sheeting being swept off store shelves across the country, Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge tried Friday to reassure Americans there is no reason to panic.

You remember that little incident, some resoluteness from our staying the course government, don't you? Perhaps that was just an attempt to boost consumerism with a prod towards certain domestic goods, duct tape, plastic sheeting, candles, some vegatable oil perhaps?

The administration said it raised the terror alert based on multiple and credible pieces of information....

A senior government official told the Associated Press Friday that the administration now believes some of the information which led to upgrading the terrorist alert status to the second highest level was likely fabricated.

My bolds suggest a little problem with our leaders consistancy, but hey, it was all so very determined and forceful, wasn't it.

Senator Kerry said we'd be better off if terrorism were no more than a nuisance, an occassional and ugly situation that the professionals in law enforcement would deal with, as opposed to turning this country upside down and inside out. He didn't say that's what it is now, but alas and alack, that's what the bushites want to label it. But why?

Because terror, fear, apprehension serves their purpose of course. What else do they have? What real problems does this war on terror obscure or ignore? How about China owning our debt? How about our debt service draining the government of funds that could be used more productively elsewhere?

The government has to borrow an average of more than $1.1 billion a day to pay its bills, and it spends more on interest payments on the federal debt each year -- about $159 billion -- than it does on education, homeland security, justice and law enforcement, veterans, international aid, and space exploration combined.

snip

"The U.S. will rely increasingly on less stable sources of funding and pay higher interest rates," [Sung Won Sohn, chief economist at Wells Fargo Bank] said. "It is a fait accompli that the dollar will depreciate further. The dollar depreciation will lead to higher inflation and interest rates, hurting the economy."

That downturn follows a record influx of foreign lending to the United States that accelerated under the Bush administration from $19.2 billion in 2001 to $118 billion in 2002 to $279 billion in 2003....

During the president's term, China surpassed Britain as the United States' second largest foreign lender, with its holdings more than tripling from $50 billion in December 2000 to $166 billion in July.

The situation may put Washington in a bind.

If foreign investors stop buying Treasury bonds, interest rates would shoot up to try to attract those buyers back so the government can pay its bills. The value of the dollar will drop -- perhaps sharply. Heavily indebted U.S. consumers, facing rising interest rates and soaring prices for imports, will cut spending. Moribund economies in Europe and Japan will not be able to pick up the slack.

The result? "Global recession," predicted John Williamson, a senior fellow at the Institute for International Economics.

If the lending splurge continues, however -- and some feel it is bound to, if only because China and Japan now have an interest in propping up the dollar to keep their exports cheap -- some fear U.S. policymaking will be constrained by the reliance on foreign capital. "What does this mean to our bargaining power as a nation?" asked Michael D. Granoff, president of Pomona Capital, an investment firm. "If China is financing our debt, how tough can we be the next time there's a Tiananmen Square?"

But rest assured, bush's

Treasury economists say such concerns are exaggerated, arguing that the U.S. economy is large enough to absorb much more borrowing. Compared with the overall economy, total outstanding U.S. debt is about 35 percent of gross domestic product, said Randy Quarles, assistant Treasury secretary for international affairs. Japan's debt, by comparison, is roughly 100 percent of GDP.

These are the same experts who told us we'd have a surplus of $5.6 TRILLION. Er, actually, a deficit of $3 TRILLION. Oops, silly resolute stay the course me.

So I ask you once more, would you find it better to spend your time worrying and thinking about terrorism and your friends and family getting killed and maimed in Iraq, or thinking and planning on a great business idea or that promotion at work or the next family vacation?

I say again, do you wish for a world where we are consumed by threats and terrorism and lost civil liberties, or a world where the biggest worries are local and mundane in nature? Mundane in the sense of the stuff of everyday life, not trivial or unimportant.

Yes, 9/11 was a terrible day. And so was April 19, 1995. And September 20, 1991. But we don't need to destroy our village to save it. We don't need to let fear and irrational behavior rule us. Torture? We torture people now? As a matter of government policy, approved by George effing Bush and his Handlers?

We trash the planet, level mountains, foul our air and water, so that the multi-national corporations can make a few billion more? We foist some bogus drug plan on seniors so that Merck and Glaxo and Co can make billions, and seniors pay the price? This is our Dear Leader, the Godly Man in the White House?

Denmark really stinks, and all the water in the oceans won't get that damn stain out. At least not until bush gets purged from the body politic.

November 2nd can't get here soon enough, people. Eyes on the ball, eyes on the ball.

Duckman GR :: 12:42 AM :: Comments (5) :: Digg It!