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Monday: Blink!

Bethany Beach, DE

huh, did the Republicans blink yesterday over the debt ceiling?  I was forced to watch a lot of talking heads shows on Sunday.  Well, it was better than another Casey Anthony rant fest with Nancy Grace and her vorpal bangs.  The big news yesterday is that Boehner took $2 trillion of the $4 trillion spending cuts the Democrats offered (hey!  that’s the Social Security trust fund you wankers!) off the table because Biden’s offer came with strings: Boehner and the Republicans were going to have to agree to revenue increases.  Taxes, oil, that is, Texas Tea.  Well, the first think ya’ know, Boehner moved away from there.

So, the global economic hostage crisis is on with the Republicans screeching like Banshees on the morning shows about the deficit.  If we bring down spending, businesses will create new jobs.  It sounded too good to be true.  “Oh!”, the average Jane says, scratching her dirty hair, “Is that what does it?  You mean, if we stop spending on government, and let everyone keep their money instead of giving it to the tax collector, I will get my job back making cancer drugs?  How does that happen?”  And the Republican says, “Don’t worry your pretty little head about it.  It’s special Republican fairy dust.  We just sprinkle it on you and the jobs will just fly to you.  No networking involved.  Presto change-O!”

What do these jerks take us for, Cindy-lou Who?

Meanwhile, down at the Delaware beach (nice beaches in Delaware, highly recommended, very clean), I monitored the news on my ipad while the tribe played Password beneath the umbrella tent.  “You’ll never guess what the Obama administration is offering to the Republicans.”


“He’s offering to slash Medicare and Social Security.  The average Social Security beneficiary will lose up to $18,000 in income over the course of his/her retirement”

“LOLOLOLOLOL!  Which Democrats?  They’d have to be SUICIDAL”

“Oh, probably all of them.  They got rid of Weiner last month after all.  Steny’s counting his votes and Weiner probably got in the way”


“Why are you laughing?  They’re serious.”

“LOLOLOLOLOL!  They can’t possibly be serious”

“Stop laughing!  No, I mean it!, they really want to do it”

“LOLOLOLOLOL!  They would NEVER go along with that.  Anyone who would go along with that would have to be CRAZY.”

I had a sudden flashback to September 11, 2001.  My colleague Yi stood at my desk as we watched the WTC disaster unfold.

“You know why they did that”, she said, “It’s because they think the US is a *indecipherable*”  She grinned a little mockingly.

“What does *indecipherable* mean?  Jeez, I wish I had taken Mandarin and not four years of Spanish that I never had a chance to use.”

“It means”, Yi slowed down, “they think you are like paper with a scary face.”

“A paper tiger?”, I asked, in disbelief, “They think we are all words and no bite?”

I looked at Yi, straight on and made a prediction, sort of like one of those Sybyl types that sit over a crack in the earth that pours forth an intoxicating LD50-ish level of ethylene gas: “Let me tell you, Yi, whoever did this to us has no idea what they’re screwing with.  Americans are born and raised to think of this country as No 1.  No one messes with us and gets away with it.  There is going to be an outpouring of patriotism and flag-waving like you have never seen before.  It will be ferocious.  It will be powerful.  You wait and see.  Before you get home tonight, it will have started.  We are NOT a paper tiger.  We are the greatest military force this world has ever seen and god help the country that poked this sleeping tiger with a stick.  If we’re not careful, we could turn that country into a smoking ember.  Brace yourself because when the tiger is unleashed, it’s going to go a little nuts.”

And it did.

We still think of ourselves as No 1, no matter what the Masters of the Universe think.  Obama and Steny have a long way to go to dislodge that notion.  And dislodging that notion does not make for a very uplifting campaign narrative.  “We’re number 57!” does not go well with the voting public.  Neither does Tim Geithner’s little bit of crepe hanging:

This is still a very tough economy. For a lot of people, it’s going to feel very hard — harder than anything they’ve experienced in a lifetime now — for some time to come.

Yes, why don’t we tell the future cancer patients who can’t get new treatments that it’s going to get very bad now because Obama and Geithner couldn’t figure out a way of jump starting the economy or fix the pharmaceutical industry.  That’s why so many R&D types were laid off with no way to fund expensive new companies that might have discovered ways to save them.  Or we can tell the piano teacher that’s why she is getting fewer students.  Or we can tell the high school student that her school dropped *the entire language department* because it is going to feel very hard for her lifetime.

The harder it feels, the angrier we’re all going to get.

And it happened on Obama’s watch with the Democrats’ help.

The sunbathers are right, it is laughable.

In other news:

Lambert scored a gig on Virtually Speaking with Avedon Carol yesterday.  Well, there were some technical difficulties but take a listen anyway.



10 Responses

  1. Borrowing from Yogi Berra– No one goes to Bethany Beach any more. Its too crowded.

  2. Actually, it wasn’t too bad. Jersey beaches are crowded and full of jellyfish and bennies who puff away like smokestacks. I *hate* cigarette smoke and butts and litter.
    Bethany is nice. Very family oriented. Lots of kids, for sure, but not too noisy. The water has an appropriate level of roughness. No one comes home unscathed. But the lifeguards only chase you out if the water during thunderstorms. They don’t prevent you from getting slammed on the beach by a wave.
    So, thumbs up to Bethany Beach and Sea Colony. If I can afford to up next year, I will. This year’s vacation was paid in advance. But the luxuries, and Bethany is hardly a luxury vacation, are going to stop very, very soon. The end of the severance pay approaches quickly.

  3. If you goto Singapore RD you can easily study Mandarin, do Tai Chi for free in the early mornings, walk or jog in the natural gardens (name?), feel safe letting your daughter use public transportation by herself and go anywhere, study French, German, etc at the various foreign alliances in the city, swim every morning in your 1/2 or 1/1 olympic size pool, be appreciated as an American. Or go to China where they will also love you, your education, your expertise, and you will have many cities to choose from. Japan? Korea? India?

    Southeast Asia is wonderful. Go.

    And we are a paper tiger. We have reduced Irag to weeds and rubble, but we haven’t won and we never will. The symbolic counter-gift cannot be returned. Ever. So our economy is suicidal. Straight Baudrillard analysis. Or try Virilio. We are doomed. Get out now. Go where you will be appreciated and feted and paid well. All that is left for us is to rearrange the deck chairs on the you know what. Sae yourself and your daughter. Your mom will love Asia too.

    The food is great, reasonable, healthy and delicious.

    • Um, I’m sure it’s a nice place to visit but for done reason, I don’t have a burning desire to live in Singapore. But I will look into it if you think the food is good. 😉

      • Stay here, RD! America needs sassy voices like yours. I myself have missed it very much. And I am not going to vote for a Democrat in 2012 that is proposing to slash SS and medicare. My mother will have no other source of income, not to mention that as a youth my future looks like a dystopia from The Hunger Games Just you wait… some day soon we will be living in Panem, sending our children off to die in the hunger games to prove allegiance to the oligarchy. Wait a minute… aren’t we all ready doing that?

  4. I’m thinking of moving to Costa Rica. They don’t have an army so they don’t have endless wars. When my thieving Republican governor lowers my pension and Obama gives away my Medicare, I can live in relative comfort even if I have to pay cash for my medical care.

    A lot of people there speak English and I speak rudimentary Spanish so I should be able to get about.

    It’s sounding more and more like a plan.

    • I remarried and moved to France. Not exactly a feminist paradise and I’m having a rough time of it professionally, but I have health care, the right to unemployment, and a roof over my head. So I’m good.

    • Supposedly, Costa Ricans are the happiest people on the face of the planet, according to new metrics of measuring well being and prosperity. I heard about this via a program I saw on Youtube. Can’t remember the link right now, but if I come across it I will post it.

  5. the sad thing is for us old and sick.there is no escape.

  6. SS is a TRUST fund, built upon the reasonable expectation that our invested trust would be there for us at the appropriate time. The “I Won.” smart ass is just getting it baaaack. Fickle voters and “Joe” the plumber, pharmacist, computer hack, janitor have no TRUST in this crowd of Wall Streeters who shot themselves in the foot by screwing both investors and those who have only “sweat equity.” Stashing cash in the wall safe and “hiding” their assets in an underground economy, the descendants of the Founders have cracked back to basics and are riding out this turkey until leadership more conversant with actual work and ethic used in the same sentence are voted in. Two more election cycles and they’ll be gone, like the locusts, for another 30 years. Hang in there.

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