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Sad State of the Union Liveblog

 

 

reaganesque1

From Politico:

President Barack Obama won’t speak until prime-time, but his aides fanned out to the morning shows Tuesday morning to talk up his first speech before a joint session of Congress. And the word they used to preview it: “Reaganesque.”

“The president believes very clearly that we have to be honest with the American people about where we are,” White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

“He will,” Gibbs said, “tell the country that we’ve faced … greater challenges than the ones we face now, but we as Americans always meet those challenges. But in the Reaganesque words, there are always better days ahead.”

It was a full-on rollout, befitting a State-of-the-Union-style speech to Congress, at a moment of economic peril for the nation.

Reagan was an acting President, Obama is an impersonator.  This is who he REALLY is:

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What About the Renters?

Oh no they dit-nt. This morning FOX News reported that another bank took the TARP handout and partied on us. Did we have fun yet? Reportedly, the bank had the appreciation event planned long ago, so in other words, how could they call the wedding off, despite that the in-laws didn’t have the money? They’d just borrow it from us. But it’s okay they say, because the party money came from the operating fund. Turns out the report came from TMZ, God save me.

A bank that received $1.6 billion in bailout money just spent a fortune last week in L.A. hosting a series of lavish parties and concerts with famous singers … and TMZ cameras caught it all.

Northern Trust, a Chicago-based bank, sponsored the Northern Trust Open at the Riviera Country Club in L.A. We’re told Northern Trust paid millions to sponsor the PGA event which ended Sunday, but what happened off the golf course is even more shocking.

I was raised in WLA and Santa Monica, CA, and I can tell ya The top places were booked for this junket: The Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Loew’s Santa Monica, The Ritz Carleton. Events included performances by Chicago for $100,000, rental of the Santa Monica Airport hanger for a dinner followed by a performance by Earth, Wind, and Fire. Plus chauffeuring everyone everywhere. Sigh. Oh, and I almost forgot, Sheryl Crowe did a concert at the House of Blues, which was rented for $50,000. Yay, we’re supporting the arts.

It seems to me that the fiddling at others’—OUR—expense while our country burns is a moral failure. What is going on?

Me. I’m personally in dire straits. It was about this time during the seventies that I went underground, moved to the country, and lived like a third world peasant. I actually know how to do that.

Subsequent to that and prior to this, I rented then owned a home and sold it while the market was still good, but turning the corner. I lived there for thirteen years as a single mom then empty nester—I owned it for eight years. It was a lot of work and responsibility to have the American dream.

When I started, I knew nothing about real estate, property, property taxes, loans, mortgages, refinancing, house maintenance and systems, nor the city and county systems that supported mine—but it was all on me, and I learned. I was well aware of what I was getting into, because I had to read it to sign and asked questions. I became aware of the fudging that was going on by the loan officer after he quoted what the previous one had written. And yes, I went along. Was it right? No. But I was stuck. I had borrowed against my home to do maintenance and emergency system repairs and replacement, and also train in a new career. When I saw a few For Sale signs begin to creep up in my area, where for years there had been none, I decided to sell, despite multiple advisers saying that housing was not a bubble fixing to burst.

Although my place was beautiful, gave me, my family, and friends many happy memories, and I planted and grew absolutely beautiful perennial gardens, which were beloved and painful to leave, I’m happy to rent. Right now I prefer it—to be able to focus on my work and writing.

But what about all the people who rent? Renters are people, too. Who’s talking about them/us and what happens after they lose their jobs or can’t find work. Or the self-employed? They don’t get unemployment benefits. How many Americans are in that boat? Or in the boat whose benefits ran out long ago?

Now that I rent again, how come I can’t get help to pay my landlord? I don’t think I should, but why can some segments of society get help and not others? If I can’t pay my rent next month, I can’t get a waiver for a year or an adjustment on the amount. I can’t not pay from one month to the next, yet people who can’t pay their mortgage can, and they are rewarded. Because they hold the property, I know. And the whole domino thing, I know. In the end, we all need shelter, food, and clothing at the least.

After this admission, it’s with moral certitude that I do my coaching, writing, and healing work, with the knowledge that it’s helping to save and enhance the lives of others. It’s the light work I must do in a time of moral decline and an abundance of fear.

It is The Fear that is helping to propel things in a downward spiral, which is what Bill Clinton meant last week, when he suggested that Obama needs to convey that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. That’s what Bill did as Prez: he, not Obama, was the original man from Hope. But Bill’s schtick worked, because his actions and the mood he conveyed matched it. He buoyed people’s hopes, as opposed to Obama’s chastising Americans after he staged multiple gigantic events for a year while picking our pockets, and now picking them again and again, and those of our kids and grandkids. This is different than Bush?

It is imperative for entrepreneurs, creatives, and real light workers (haters, bite me) who offer a compassionate, helpful, truthful, empowering solution to anything to re-up. It’s time to use the technology that I learned for the cause to disseminate my professional message, which is about living healthfully and powerfully. Although my passion for real Democracy trumped my professional efforts during the past year, once again I’m reminded that my professional is political. As usual following a spiritual or an ethical path is not the easy road, but it is the only one in the end, underneath it all. Doing so, hoping once again, against all “hope”—that I don’t become Queen of the Road in the process.

His First Term?

obama_on_highJust Barely President, Baracus Hubris Maximus (hail Ceasar!) has been prattling on about “his first term” since he threw his size 10-gallon hat into the ring, like he knows something the rest of us don’t.  Like the rest of his West Wing “reality,” this is yet another transparent bit of scripted brainwashing propaganda in the Theater of the Obsurd.  However, though he no doubt truly, truly believes this one, the possibility that he might have some sort of insider knowledge on this point is more than a little freaking scary creepy.

Yesterday, while vowing to halve the deficit he inherited, yet saying zippo, nada, nuttin’ about the deficit he’s creating, he promised with his fingers crossed to get the job done by the end of “his first term,” something which he has already hinted would ensure him a second.  But, as with all things Obama, one must ask oneself, is there more to this than that?  This is an especially valuable point to consider, given that before the end of “his first term,” we’re all going to be spending a lot of time mumbling to ourselves anyway.  Might as well have something worthwhile to discuss.

Like his handlers’ now familiar other rather adept feats of legerdemain, such as the tried and true, clever use of favorable polling results ahead of entry into particularly tricky territory, in  proven-to-be largely successful attempts to pave the way for the increased possibility of public acceptance of whatever balderdash is read from left to right off his his Traveling TelePrompTer To Go, “my first term” has the hypnotic effect of “you are getting sleepy.”

Of course, in advance of his sure-to-be-historic first non State of the Union address tonight, we have already been treated to the requisite number of “he’s the shit” polls in the last few days, one even going so far as to assure us that he is more heroic, and thus, logically, more powerful, than Jesus.  Since, for Christians, Jesus trumps Moses, we can take comfort in the blind faith that the Obamessiah will lead us to the Promised Land of Financial Security by throwing out the Money Changers.  See how that works?  And, while all this is going on, we are being properly greased and trussed to receive the news that Our Dear Leader will reluctantly have to bite the bullet and nationalize the already nationalized entire financial sector.  Before “his first term” really even starts.

It is indeed comforting to know that we have a Father Figure who will do what’s best for us, even if that means increasing our (the taxpayer’s) risk while fattening the pockets of the beleaguered banksters.  Which is exactly what he’s about to tell us he’s about to do.  But you see, that’s how he’s going to “remake” the country, and bring about the “change” he’s been promising to achieve before the end of “his first term.”  First, see, he’s gotta get control of the banks, then, all industry, then, put us all to work on chain gangs building roads and railroads, then force us to “volunteer,” then turn over the school system to the military.  After that, by the time the government is in charge of everything else, fixing health care is a piece of cake.  Quite ambitious for the four years he’s got until the end of “his first term,” huh?

Now, if this is your idea of liberal/progressive heaven, the Wall Street Journal’s Matt Miller says, in what I assume is not snark, “Shhhhhh! Shut the hell up and let the man do his thing before you blow it!”  Of course, being an Obot fluent in ObaSpeak, he didn’t use those exact words, per se:

President Barack Obama is taking a beating from liberal critics who think his attempt to court Republican support is a political failure and a policy disaster. Yet this assault on Mr. Obama’s bipartisan instinct is misguided and, ironically, threatens to undermine liberal goals.

snip

Mr. Obama’s stimulus plan, which aims first to mitigate the collapse in aggregate demand in the economy, nonetheless lays down important markers toward this agenda, even if (or perhaps because) the details didn’t please partisans on either side. By marrying major new public investments with major new tax cuts, Mr. Obama is signaling that public activism and private incentives both matter profoundly. This yin-and-yang approach was strikingly on display at the bipartisan “fiscal responsibility summit,” which Mr. Obama convened at the White House yesterday. Before members of Congress and other guests, the president insisted on the need to restore long-term fiscal discipline (including entitlement reform) even as the nation runs up historic deficits to battle the recession in the next few years. The president’s professed reluctance to “nationalize” ailing banks — which has left space for an extraordinarily swift outside consensus to emerge (led by surprising voices like Alan Greenspan’s and Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham’s) that temporary bank takeovers may be necessary — shows similar instincts. (emphasis mine)

See, Obie’s just playin’.  He’s finagling the Republicans with fake out overtures of bipartisanship so they can publicly reject him, then, pretending he doesn’t want stuff he really does want, because he knows whatever he says he doesn’t like, they’re gonna promote.  Clever, huh?  That way, he gets his way and if it tanks, it’s not his fault.  If it doesn’t, he’s a hero. (hail Ceasar!)  Either way, he gets his second term.

But, first, he’s gotta get the banks.

Now, you may say, “oh, come on! Are you really trying to tell me you think this guy is that friggin’ Machiavellian?”  To which I would respond, “you must be an Obot.”  Everybody else is well aware that similarly scuzzy, deceitful, underhanded manipulations are the reason he’s president now.   Step away from the KoolAid, and prepare to serve.  First though, I should warn you, you, too are going to have to assume the position sooner or later.  Once you have a firm grasp on your ankles, maybe you’ll begin to really see The Light.

“Cross posted at my place, Cinie’s World.  For more background information on my take on the meltdown and how we got here, see my earlier posts, Inside the Wall Street Whisper Campaign, and What “Is” Is.

Tuesday: Nuthin’ for Money

Wheres your lunch money, kid?

Where's your lunch money, kid?

Guys, I have an early morning meeting that I have to try to be on time for so this will be short.

I hope some of you have been following Planet Money.  For some bizarre reason, they don’t seem to indulge much in propaganda.  Maybe it’s because they view themselves as a podcast that seeks to explain.  They try to break down the jargon so that it’s easily disgestible and understandable.  Maybe it’s because they are affiliated with one of the best radio shows in America, This American Life.  They are chroniclers of sorts.  They’re definitely elite in terms of education but they don’t come off like the Whole Foods Nation.  Their position is that of the common man trying to make sense of it all.  Maybe that’s why some of their podcasts sound a little like, “Hey, buddy, try not to get excited but I just saw some guys with crowbars down on the street who are trying to break into your car.  Just thought you’d like to know.”

Yesterday’s podcast was a doozy. Even with Uri Berliner from the NPR business desk filling in for the regulars and patiently walking us through the jargon with Rolf Winkler of Option Armageddon, it was a little hard to follow.  But the bottom line came through clearly enough:  Obama and Geithner are conspiring with the banks for the US taxpayers to absorb the losses of the shareholders of Citibank.  In return, we will get diluted shares of common stock and the shareholders get a floor to their freefall.  The result of all of this is that the banks will stay in private hands.

Uri:  That means we’re [the taxpayers] are trading $45 billion dollars of investment in Citigroup into $4-5 billion in common shares?

Rolf: Yes.  Approximately.  That’s a decent way of thinking about it.

Dakinikat has also been having some WTF? moments. I encourage you to read up about this stuff.  Knowledge is power.  Right now, the media is so busy trying to tell us how totally awesome Obama is that the public may not realize that he doesn’t know what he’s doing but Tim Geithner does.  Geithner is doing everything in his power to prevent the bank shareholders from losing too much money and surrendering control of their insolvent banks to the government even if that means that taxpayers lose 90% of their investment in the bank. But when it comes to Social Security, the investment you made over the years will not be protected.  The post-partisan, non-Democrats in charge are looking for a way to not have to replace the billions of dollars the movement conservatives borrowed from the Trust Fund over the years and YOU will be expected to take a loss.

Sweeet!

There is a very disturbing psychological warfare being set up in the media right now to make us believe that there is no money left for us and we deserve to have no money, while the bankers are innocent bystanders who simply bought shares in banks and they need to be bought out.  When that happens, all that money transferred to banks like Citigroup will be in private hands and there will be no money left to pay back the Trust Fund. Oh, sure, they’ve tabled the idea of “reforming” Social Security for “fiscal responsibility”, or so they say.  But you can be sure that someone will be working on the awful conundrum that is the legacy of the Bush years: how to convince the taxpayer to voluntarily screw themselves so the wealthy and well connected don’t have to suffer?

Call me an old, working class, uneducated, sino-peruvian lesbian but I ain’t stupid.  We is being robbed.