Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The angry rich

Remember what I've said over and over in this space? That Republicans (and Blue Dogs) don't give a shit about you unless you're rich? Krugman:

The spectacle of high-income Americans, the world’s luckiest people, wallowing in self-pity and self-righteousness would be funny, except for one thing: they may well get their way. Never mind the $700 billion price tag for extending the high-end tax breaks: virtually all Republicans and some Democrats are rushing to the aid of the oppressed affluent.

You see, the rich are different from you and me: they have more influence. It’s partly a matter of campaign contributions, but it’s also a matter of social pressure, since politicians spend a lot of time hanging out with the wealthy. So when the rich face the prospect of paying an extra 3 or 4 percent of their income in taxes, politicians feel their pain — feel it much more acutely, it’s clear, than they feel the pain of families who are losing their jobs, their houses, and their hopes.

And when the tax fight is over, one way or another, you can be sure that the people currently defending the incomes of the elite will go back to demanding cuts in Social Security and aid to the unemployed. America must make hard choices, they’ll say; we all have to be willing to make sacrifices.

But when they say “we,” they mean “you.” Sacrifice is for the little people.
This column brings to mind a post by Athenae that's linked to at Susie's place:

In the second place, in the second paragraph, really. You're really going to tell starving children to go blow because you're mad about your taxes. That's a thing you're going to do. The starving children, natch, having all kinds of influence in Congress, given how everybody's falling all over themselves to help THEM. Those are the people who can do exactly dick about your tax sitch, so I'm sure your brave moral stand will SO TOTALLY get noticed by our decision makers. Shit, stop giving money to politicians if you don't like how they behave, but Toys for Tots did nothing to you to deserve your contempt, and you're doing plenty to earn mine.
Of course, the starving children have no influence on Congress because the only thing congresspeople care about is getting re-elected, that is to say, their own asses. Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa, for example, would rather shut down the federal government than alienate what he sees as a bumper crop of new potential supporters in the tea baggers.

“We must not blink,” he said, noting that money cannot be spent without the House voting to pass it. “If the House says no, it’s no.”

Their new tea party backers won’t tolerate anything less than a full repeal of the health care law, he said.

“They will leave us if we go wobbly,” he said. “I am worried about that, but that’s why I think it’s got to be a blood oath.”
No word from King about what might happen if the entire nation goes "wobbly" because the House forces a shutdown of the government. But apparently Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa is not "worried about that." Apparently Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa is more "worried about" getting Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa re-elected.

Country first, y'all.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Reid cuts Kolb from fantasy team

PHILADELPHIA -- Eagles head coach Andy Reid dropped quarterback Kevin Kolb from his fantasy football team Thursday, one day after Kolb and linebacker Stewart Bradley failed post-concussion exams. Both players sustained concussions in the Eagles' loss to the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.

"I just felt that, as far as my fantasy team ("Reid Between the Lines") was concerned, there were more productive options at quarterback," Reid said. "That doesn't mean that I don't have complete confidence in Kevin as quarterback of the Philadelphia Eagles. Just not as quarterback of Reid Between the Lines."

Reid said he expects the impact of Kolb's injury on his fantasy team to be minor, as Kolb was the team's backup quarterback.

"I have (New Orleans Saints quarterback) Drew Brees as my starter," Reid said, "so Kevin really just there for insurance and for week 10, when the Saints are on their bye week.

"The guy is a fantastic player, just a great competitor," Reid added. "Brees, I mean. He's a fantasy points machine."

Reid then descibed at length the details of his search for a new backup fantasy quarterback, which he eventually completed by adding free agent Michael Vick to his fantasy roster.

"I'm not crazy about adding Vick," Reid said. "Let's face it, the guy has always been a fantasy bust. But it's just until Big Ben (Roethlisberger) comes back. Then I will release his ass.

"But for the Eagles, Vick is a terrific option," Reid quickly added. "I have complete confidence in Michael. For the Eagles."

Labels: , ,

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Signature pitch

An interactive look at Mariano Rivera's cutter and why it is so effective.

Labels: ,

Monday, September 06, 2010

Iranian woman still faces stoning

Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani's sentence has not been lifted.

The lawyer for an Iranian woman sentenced to be stoned on an adultery conviction said Monday that he and her children are worried the delayed execution could be carried out soon with the end of a moratorium on death sentences for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

In an unusual turn in the case, the lawyer also confirmed that Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani was lashed 99 times last week in a separate punishment meted out because a British newspaper ran a picture of an unveiled woman mistakenly identified as her. Under Iran's clerical rule, women must cover their hair in public. The newspaper later apologized for the error.

With the end of Ramadan this week, the mother of two could be executed "any moment," said her lawyer, Javid Houtan Kian.
Please call the White House (comments: 202-456-1111; switchboard: 202-456-1414) and tell President Obama to please intervene on Ashtiani's behalf.