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That's What I'm Talking About!

Alan Grayson is a rock star. He is a House Democrat from Orlando, Florida calling bullshit on GOP and Blue Dog Democrat obstructionists blocking meaningful health care reform, speaking the truth and calling them out on their utter lack of any plan. Grayson has bigger balls than the entire GOP combined and you know what? He deserves praise and support for being one of the few voices to speak out against those who both wish to see reform fail and those who wish to see President Obama fail.

Grayson recently outraged simpering GOP crybabies by stating their reform platform for them since they have yet to offer any coherent plan:
"Don't get sick. If you do get sick, die quickly..."
That pretty much sums up the Republican plan for the uninsured and it's not a lie nor is it outrageous to say it because it is true. While most if not all of the GOP and Blue Dog Democrats in the House and Senate fiddle away like Nero watching Rome burn, 44,000 Americans a year DIE because of a lack of health insurance and a lack of adequate health care coverage. It took someone like Grayson to remind them and all of us -- a relative newcomer from a pretty conservative district who is not afraid to stand up for what is right rather than selling his soul to the private insurance lobby for campaign contributions as many politicians have already done.

Now some right wing extremists are whining incessantly that he should apologize for his comments. He basically told them to go fuck themselves and rightly so, pointing out that ten time the amount of those that have died in the service of our country in Iraq and over ten times the amont of people that died during the 9/11 attack are dying each and every year because of their inaction and craven attempts to squeeze more campaign funds from an industry that profits directly from continued death and suffering. Some in the GOP are even going as far as to liken his presentation in the house to Joe Wilson's rude outburst calling a sitting president a liar in front of upwards of 40 million people. They equate his truth telling with the lie that Wilson told and continues to boast about. Now that's outrageous! It's called equivilency and it is a tactic the GOP has become experts in exploiting. Wilson should have been censured and ostracized for his rudeness his lack of protocol and common decency. On the other hand, Grayson's words make him a hero to the majority of Ameicans, not just a fraction of the less than 25% of the Republican right wing extremists and whackjobs for whom Wilson spoke. Even though Grayson refuses to apologize to the butthurt GOP weasels like Wilson and his ilk, he did offer his apology to those who have died and the families of those who have died because of stalling on the part of congress. They all should do that. They should all be ashamed for doing what they have been doing for decades -- which is absolutely nothing. Republicans and Democrats alike.

If you believe the world needs more Alan Graysons then put your money where your mouth is and contribute to him and guys like him. It's the only way we can get some reality inside the beltway... by supporting those who realize the importance of meaningful health care reform. NOW. The debate has had sixty years. Enough debate already -- time for action. Those that don't act to do the right thing NOW will suffer the wrath of the majority of American voters who absolutely DO support a public option or single payer system when we vote those bums out of office and I promise we will do precisely that. If they're not going to do the will of the people who elected them in this representative democracy then it is time to send them back home forever. Let them fuck up something else in the private sector rather than America and Americans.


(Oh and P.S. -- Congressman Grayson, if you have any extra cojones to spare and I think you do, please send some along to Rahm and Barack post haste! They could use some balls and perhaps some good old fashioned backbone as well.)

With friends like these...

According to an insider at the Rupert Murdoch owned New York Post:

"The big lecture buyers in the US are paralyzed with fear about booking her [Palin], basically because they think she is a blithering idiot," the source said. "They don't want to tick people off."

So there you have it. Apparently the only people who would not be ticked off are her fellow "blithering idiot(s)".



The Bizarre World of Sarah Palin's Brain, Part Deux...

Now with COLOR VIDEO. Dang these internet tubes are freekin' awesome!

The absurdity of Palin's position is untenable. The woman needs a serious wake up call (see previous post, written before I watched this video). At the moment Palin has national ambition stars in her eyes (Shuneman fueled, blowing smoke up her wazoo, whispering promises of ponies, unicorns and untold millions with which to purchase peep toe pumps...) and will be hitting the media with a book tour and her 'just Sarah plain and tall' (in jog togs or the aformentioned peep toe pumps) act soon. I see either her and Beck together (and I DO mean TOGETHER together, as in doing 'it' -- you want to see the anti-christ for real then it would have to resemble an imagined unholy spawn of an equally unholy Beck/Palin union) or she will run for President (actually my guess is that by Shuneman being back in the mix again, McCain is making overtures to have her as VP all over again just to show America he's got huge fucking brass balls the size of Brazil, NO! China... he's SO damn mavrick-y he'd choose her all over again, gawdammit). She will probably do both, milking the media, milking the politics for as long as both are possible but either way, eventually she will lose. Lose in the mainstream majority controlled media and then run for office and lose again as President (though more likely as VP to the maverick-y glimmer twins ticket, back for a second thumping in 2012). Or eventually, if Alaskans are lucky, Palin will just quit every blessed thing altogether as it seems quitting stuff is really her true calling (judging from past history), and I've always supported people committed to their true calling. I was called to be a great writer and thinker but all I have is the lousy t-shirt. Not that I'm saying that would be Sarah's fault... who do you think helped me buy the lousy t-shirt?



The Bizarre World of Sarah Palin's Brain...

Perhaps Sarah just has a broken irony meter? I don't know. I find it hilarious that she doesn't see it as ironic that her first major paid speech is taking place today in a communist country, where she will no doubt mindlessly rail against communism and socialism. I'd bet even money that she doesn't even really know that Hong Kong is now part of China and that China is one of the few remaining communist contries left on earth. I'm sorry, but a woman who once referred to Africa as "a country" rather than a continent isn't winning any confidence points for intelligence from me, nosiree.

In fact AP/HuffPo has reported that during Palin's speech today she said, "We [America] got into this mess because of government interference in the first place...". Which is of course diametrically opposed to the facts. Now who is makin' things up, Sarah? Apparently a former popular young cheerleader once named Sarah Heath who was not paying close enough attention to the proper things in history and civics classes, that's who. One that suddenly believes herself to be as credible talking about world financial markets as she purportedly is supposed to be when talking about energy development. Even though she's really not qualified to talk authoritatively about either subject in reality. She's aborted her career in both fields of endeavor prematurely. She's hardly an expert in anything. Other than the good old fashioned down home gum smackin' and eye winkin' Wasilla-billy charm she seems to exude.

No, Sarah -- we got into a financial meltdown (again) because we took the controls OFF the banking industry that we had previously put there after the failure of thousands of savings and loan institutions back in the 80s. Read that again carefully, Sarah. Not "too much government interference" but rather "not enough government oversight". Again you have things completely ass backwards Sarah, pounding your meme nails with the skinny end of the hammer. The entire premise of your speech is laughable precisely because it is exactly the opposite from actual reality. Which by the way does not surprise me in the least. (Sarah was never much of a scholar so the idea that whatever she says, do the opposite still applies).

You see Sarah, without any goverment oversite or interference Wall Street, led by investment banking firms helped finance a banking industry that created high risk loans for people who could not realistically pay them back. Then when those borrowers defaulted they repackaged the whole mess into 'default credit swaps' which were then magically made into something of value by rebranding them as 'derivitives'. What made them valuable was because they were insured against failure by AIG. In fact towards the end, it became default practice to bet against the derivatives as 'investments' and collect your insurance money from AIG for the losses you were helping to cause as a banker.

Older readers will recall 'junk bonds' during the 80s. Well meet the new debt boss, same as the old debt boss. Derivitaves are nothing less than junk bonds whose sole backing is debt itself. The idea is that if you're a multi-billion dollar corporation and you need to not pay taxes, you can buy up a few billions worth of these 'investment' derivatives, show them on the books as an investment, but then mark it down to show it as a loss for tax purposes. It's a ponzi scheme, the same one made up back in the 80s with junk bonds only with all new terminology. Terminology with zazz! Whee. Aren't we so damn lucky that the Amercan system seems to foster some of the worst, most unethical, most greedy and opportunistic bastards on the face of the planet to migrate towards MBA degrees?

So Sarah's next answer? She claimed that if taxes were cut and the capital gains tax and estate tax eliminated, the world would "watch the U.S. economy roar back to life." Wrong again Sarah. All that will do is further entrench the wealth of the most wealthiest 1% of Americans. Your overlords. It does nothing for the majority of Americans. According to one conference attendee "she criticized Obama a lot but offered no solutions." Damn. It's almost like having her back as governor! The the gaffe machine, now humming along like well oiled clockwork churned up the idea that she believes "the U.S. has a role in helping China find its future and that the U.S. will always be on the side of promoting freedom...". Which is always the thing communists want to hear. Yeehaw! We loves us some freedom, Sarah Palin! Freedom from an oppressive state controlled political apparatus! Hey wait... ahem. Awkward.

As if that weren't bad enough she then weighed in with her opinion on the Muslim Uighurs and Han Chinese problems in China saying she thought their ethnic disputes were "a sign that China lacks mechanisms to deal with regional issues...". I bet the Chinese laughed even harder at that than I am now. That's a hoot! But only because I KNOW it to be yet another classic example of Palin wrongheadedness. Not only does she have no business or basis for offering such insight to her Chinese hosts, she seems dreadfully unaware of the situation back home. Gee I don't know Sarah, seen a news show lately? Town Hall health care meetings? Rampant racism? Disrespect for a sitting President? Any of these ringing a bell for you yet, Sarah? It's as if somewhere, in a parallel universe, they recast that clueless goes to Washington, D. C. girl as a redhead from Idaho except we're actually living in that parallel universe. At least we are in Sarah's bizarre mind.



Two Things...

Now comes the time where I can tell myself "I told you so..." as even conservatives are starting to squeal that Glenn Beck, paid Fox News political whack job, is hurting the Republican conservative movement because of all his whack conspiracy theories. The fact that his 9/12 march in D. C. could only muster less than 70,000 people (even though Fox started the later proved incorrect meme tha ABC News had reported anywhere between 900,000 to 2 Million marchers) also demonstrates precisely how much his popularity has been hyped and overblown mostly by Fox themselves. They even went as far as to circulate photos also later proven to actually be photos for the recent 'Million Man March' and claim them as their own. Even their lies are becoming more transparent and even more ineffective. Hope you are enjoying the marginalization of the neocon wing of the Republican party as much as I am -- good riddance to bad rubbish!

So let's recap -- Beck has less than 50% of his original advertisers left... conservatives are jumping the sinking ship like squealing rats and I bet if you took a ratings poll, it would show his ratings to either be down slightly or up greatly. A dismal turnout for the 'grassroots movement' promoted by Beck and Fox as the '9/12 Teaparty March' would seem to reinforce the former as being more accurate rather than the latter. Beck is becoming a sad assclown before our very eyes. One who will soon need to do the sweeping/mopping up routine right before he packs all his desk toys into a little box and leaves Fox in disgrace. I mean it's Fox so you know it's going to be ugly. Personally I believe they will have actual men with a real long sleeved white jacket show up for him live and on the air. They'll buckle him up and he will froth manically as they cart him away for a few months to process him through the Fox Indoctrination Work Camp. Then of course he'll come back even stronger and uglier than before. I'm crossing my fingers that he just retires to the sanitarium for good. In fact I look forward to the day when both he and Rush will only be guests at some distant reality TV show location. When their lies and subversion as well as their blatant spoken racist ideas are forever off the radio and television airwaves.

The other 'I told me so' is about balance and how I predicted the extremism manifest in town halls would eventually stop once the "big fat wide majority of centrist, moderate and progressive Americans" showed up to laugh at the absurdity of the far-right's argument and assclown antics at town hall health care reform meetings. So now it's happened. The majority have shown up and laughed the wingnuts right off the stage and it will continue to happen. As we get closer to a working bill, it will become harder and harder for the GOP to pull lies out of their asses about progress on a finalized bill. Their only hope is to poison it through the amendment process. Fortunately for all of us that isn't likely to happen. Ultimately it's going to be a Democrat bill and every poison pill must be crushed, each loophole stitched before it becomes law. Not a single Republican will vote for anything however. You can take that to the bank. If they put the 'Public option' in the final bill and I believe they will, not even Olympia Snowe will vote for it. So in retrospect we can now see there was no need to get our collective knickers in a knot over the August recess. Once again sanity, reason and intelligence will prevail over stupidity in America as it usually and historically has done in the past and we will see a health care/health insurance reform bill, probably before the Xmas break. With or without the Republican obstructionists. Most likely without.



Slackin' with Lisa

Hey -- nobody pays me to write so I do it when I want. Okay? ;)

Mostly I've been in a quieter observer mode. Seeing how things are playing out. Laying low but jumping in where I feel I need to, but more in the offline world than here, so my apologies for neglecting the blog for an entire week.

One thing that does pique my interest is a maybe, sorta, kinda move to slow down climate change legislation by our own Senator Lisa Murkowski. Shorthand reason: the still unfinished nature of any gas pipeline in Alaska. Everybody else can speculate as to what the REAL reason is but if you can't read the wall that Lisa is sorta, kinda thinking of spraying her own personal graffiti upon, then you don't know Lisa. She's looking out for what she believes are Alaska's economic owners, Big Oil. Don't believe me? Go look up her campaign donations on the FEC website. So basically she's merely doing what her corporate overlords are telling her to do. On the left hand side of the FEC homepage is a link to 'Campaign Finance Reports and Data' punch in Murkowski 2010 in the search box and browse away. Particularly in the non-party and PAC section. See the 'Big Oil' and energy company donors? Understand, now?

You see I'm a constituent too, but not one that works for 'Big Oil' or one that can afford to contribute to her campaign in a large enough amount to get her attention. So basically that means I'm shit out of luck in her book. Were I to remind her that glaciers are melting, ice floes are receding and a host of other obvious signals that demonstrate we're already in the midst of global warming, my words could be ash upon my lips. But ash I'd be more than willing to blow in her ear. When did American Democracy become a patronage system? Oh yeah, when corporations took it over.

But because I still have hope for the American system, I will write her and post her on her facebook account anyhow. Time to register a constituent opinion and hope she wakes the hell up. Stationary CO2 emitters are just as culpable as mobile ones, Senator.



OMFGAK Rawkin' Rodeo Roundup...

A big rawkin' roundup of links and interesting stories around the nets.

Raise your hand if you think the Iraq war to be unnecessary, unjust and a diversion away from Al Queda? Mark me in the 'we were lied into a war where hundreds of thousands of people died for no damn good reason, 4,300+ of them American' column. I have used the words 'war profiteering' here in previous posts. I think I may have said it'll take decades to dig through and deconstruct the Cheney-Bush administration. Perhaps a generation, though much of any history left over from that particular Whitehouse has already been shredded and bulk erased. Or perhaps Cheney is such a meglomanicial asshole that he's got copies of EVERYTHING.

In case I wasn't clear before -- we need all Americans overseas home, now please. Time to end the expeditionary forces act, the "Mission Accomplished" bullshit that remains in Iraq and Afghanistan. Time for pushing the reset button. Time to let Pakistan ferret out their own radicals in Waziristan. Time to let the despot ex-oil pipeline negotiating Bush designee Karzai sink or swim on his own. Propping up our puppets has never worked out for American foreign policy. NEVER. Time to end the illusion that we are equipped to build democracies elsewhere when we sometimes appear to have such a slippery grasp of our own democracy in America. Ted knew. As did many others.

Unfortunately America took her eye off the ball, diverted it's military power to payback Saddam for Bush 1 with Stormin' Norman and Powell where we didn't finish the job during a justifiable war (invasion, blowing up hundreds of wellheads). We we're in Iraq a seocnd time under Bush 2 for god knows what reason (see also: 'war profiteering', KBR, Haliburton, Carlyle Group, Blackwater, etc, et al.) when we should have been finishing the job in Tora Bora rather than farming it out to local militia due to lack of our forces in country (umm, yeah -- because they were in Iraq helping with the sack, looting and war profiteering). Fast forward to a $1+ Trillion cost for Iraq and us still entrenched, bogged down in some cases, in places we just shouldn't be. Places like Afghanistan. Either get Bin Laden or get off the pot, Mr. President. But bring the rest of our fine male and female service personnel home, now. Please? Or maybe station a few more at the border of North Korea. I'm just sayin'...


So many pre-existing conditions, so little red ink for the cancellation stamp pad. Life is a pre-existing condition. Apparently in the apalling minds of the private insurance industry, so is spousal abuse. So are so many, many things. That's just how they roll in free market corporate America when it comes to the life or death private insurance industry -- all so they can, in one case, put $120 Million in their CEOs pocket for the last five years. OMFG! $120 Million!?! The poor bastard must be forced to wipe his ass with $50s for gawdsake! And light his Dominican cigars (egads!) with Andy Jacksons!

All kidding aside it was/is something that the private insurance industry promised to self reform back in the 90s and they haven't yet so of course they continue to lie and profit, profit and lie and in the process re-victimize victims of domestic abuse -- and we all just take it like the idiots we apparently have become. Wheeee! Time for change we can ALL believe in.


Online diversions. Oh so many. As a child of the burgeoning television age I have grown bored with it lately as a medium. With all apologies to McLuhan, the real action is on the net with hulu and youtube and The Daily Show/Colbert... Rachael and Keith... or PBS with full length videos of Nova and all sorts of free, on demand content. The future of teevee will not be broadcast. It will be streamed. I do not provide links as I'm sure if you're really interested you'll find them. I particularly appreciate the Daily Show and Rachael/Keith as I do not have cable or satellite television and it is the only way I get to see their shows.



Evidence of a rapid loss of influence...

"Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day
To the last syllable of recorded time,
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing."

Even the once mighty Fox News can't fake up a big enough 'grassroots movement' crowd to support their teabagging any longer... it would be pitiful if it wasn't so funny. Plus they repeatedly lied on air about attendance. Sad.



Nine Eleven Oh One

An image taken two years after by Brendan Loy.

Download the original at the site above...


tenh-HUT! Part Deux...

I've read Jon Krakauer's Everest book. Though never a mountain climber, more of a bolderer and free climber in a past life, I understood all the terminology. My idea of a climb is looking for stairs or calling for a helicopter if necessary. However, some of my best friends are true climbers. I thought Krakauer's "Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster" an excellent read about a tragic push for summit, poorly timed and perhaps populated by a group not truly schooled in actual high altitude climbing techniques. I've been told that altitude sickness is a demon that will lay you lower than a sick dog, and when you're making decisions to summit with many including some of your best technical climbers unable to do so because of being sick, you're making bad decisions. It's recuperate and then summit or evac. That the choices, folks. Krakauer captured the moment. And the tragic carnage.

Now, no pun intended but certainly appreciated, Krakauer tackles the story of Pat Tillman.

Starting at about 1:28 in... Craig schools a rude congressman:

(and part 2):

"Hey I don't come to where you live and knock the wiener out of your governor's mistress, do I?"

Classic. Yes indeed, South Carolina has plenty of trouble, but then again they always have.



Civics for Americans 455 - 1.5 Credits

The Pop quiz happens entirely in your head spontaneously afterwords. Best fifty-three minutes of time spent in my entire life.

(Thank you, Mr. President)



For any like me that may feel the occasional need for the reminder of just exactly how much our service men and women sacrifice for this country, our people and our freedoms, allow me to channel the ghost of Robert Heinlein and present to you Major General Paul D. Eaton. I echo his words by pointing you there. Read it yourself. It's all that needs be said about rude congressmen and their behavior, in front of a President, a Vice President, the entire supreme court, both houses of congress and the entire world that witnessed the rudeness live:

"I would never expect to hear anything but the greatest respect for the elected President of the United States from these men and women, regardless of their political persuasion."
That said, Mr. President, bring our men and women home now. Get out of Iraq, out of Afghanistan. Now, please. Thank You. We're not "fighting it there to keep us safer here...", we're breeding new forms of it there to be further tested upon us here sometime in the future if we don't stop all the war madness.



Hello World! Hello Robert Meyerowitz!

My friend Robert Meyerowitz mused on why we 'bloggers' even bother to pay attention to the ghostwriting muse that posts 'press releases' to facebook disguised as 'Sarah Palin" -- even going as far to impugn that we did it to drive hits to our little no ad, for free schemes. Oh Robert, that makes me laugh! Thank you! No some of us, for reasons known only unto ourselves are driven to continue to act as heralds to bat-shittery and here is precisely why, my friend: 
"When Palin resigned as governor of Alaska, many progressives and liberals declared victory, just as Beck and his cohorts are doing now over Jones' resignation. But Palin's resignation actually makes her a more dangerous political weapon for the right. As governor, she was chained to a desk in a state far removed from most of our everyday affairs. Now she's like a pitbull running loose with no leash or muzzle."
 That's why. McCain let this genie out of the bottle and for some unexplainable reason we have set ourselves to the task of contianing same. Accept it. Live with it. Better yet, write it. I am NOT making MY living off of it, I have a day job just like you. But from time to time I find the time to frame an opinion or two. So should you. So shall we all.



Palinbots and Palinistas...

I've actually called them the American Taliban before in discussions with friends. Hardcore radical evangelical Christians who are led by people like Becky Fischer, a youth pastor featured in the documentary 'Jesus Camp':

“I wanna see young people who are as committed to the cause of Jesus Christ as the young people are to the cause of Islam,” Fischer said in the documentary during an unguarded moment. “I wanna see them as radically laying down their lives for the Gospel as they are over in Pakistan and Israel and Palestine and all those different places.”
She's talking Christian suicide bombers, people. The idea of radical Christianity is just as bad as is radical Islam. Establishing an American Taliban with dominion over America politics and policy is just as wrong an idea here as it proved to be over there. Not only is it wrongheaded in oh so many ways, it's also un-American and unconstitutional. Freedom of religion and the separation of church and state insure our mutual freedom FROM religion if we so choose as well and particularly NOT a state sponsored religion. Which would be illegal. People really need to read their constitution more closely. Maybe read their bible a little more closely as well.

 Max Blumenthal details the history of how all of this may fit in with the policies and practices of a certain ex-governor of ours up here in Alaska and gives us a nice juicy slice of his book, 'Republican Gomorrah: Inside the Movement that Shattered the Party'.

Light Sunday reading, for the win!



***UPDATE*** Welcome to Glennbeckistan, Pop. 1...

No man is an island but Glenn Beck is quickly becoming a poor third world agrarian society all unto himself. A total of 57 advertisers have now quit his show and you know what? The more desperate he gets, the crazier the 'scenarios', innuendo, rumor, propaganda and lies. It's become an even bigger wild roller coaster ride of crazy lately because now he apparently thinks Obama can travel back in time some odd 50-60 years and influence the artistic and architectural tastes of a Rockefeller.

Van Jones, director of, the site that drove the advertiser boycott also happened to serve in the Obama administration at the Council on Environmental Quality. Notice the past tense in that previous statement. Jones has resigned as a casualty of this culture war. In my opinion he did both a good and a strategic thing. He has removed himself from any potential liability within the administration. Perhaps now he can afford the time to focus even more closely on the culture wars. But by toning the rhetoric down. Not amping the crazy up. That's Beck's 'job'. One he should be leaving soon.

All that remains now is that Beck take his weepy clown broom and weepily sweep up the pooled spotlight into darkness akin to what Red Skelton did when he left television. Carol Burnett used a mop. Might I suggest Glenn use a box of Kleenex? But naaah. Not Losebeckistan! He'll want to go out using the nuclear option. The one where he makes his own head explode. Though something that makes my head explode is the nagging possibility that they may decide to double-down on the crazy by adding Sarah Palin as Beck's co-host. Fox is just THAT crazy.


Arianna agrees.

With Van Jones free of public service duties, he is free to effect real change. But his replacement is also very important lest the green jobs/energy thing fall prey to bamboozling Republican Governors back in their home states, shoveling out large sums of readily available funding for cronies with pet projects. Instead of applying the stimulus funds where they need to go, improperly managed they become more of the same problems we already have, right? Start-ups and companies getting the funds should be held accountable for results. Look, it's the least we should ask for our tax dollars funding this gigantic circus, right? We're overdue for some honesty and accountability from our financial sector, too. Right?



Because I Could Not Have Said It Better...

Endgame. It is going to become the sound of inevitability. As our senators and congressmen thunder back from summer recess to D. C. for the start of the second session, that sound will be that Health Care is absolutely THE number one top priority. Period. Not only that, their jobs depend on it. Even the far right should realize that health care/health insurance and Medicaid/Medicare reform is coming. Whether they like it or not. The question has always been in what shape or form. I again suggest not as a lion, but as a lamb. A lamb with a big fucking hammer.

Let's review my previous predictions: The main bill is bloated and perhaps destined to fail. Except through the reconciliation process. Which would be a juicy process. BOOM goes the Hammer! Ferreting out all the hidden beneficiaries of the built in graft and loopholes of h.r.3200. It the only hope of saving this bill. I've suggested alternatives, a political bait-and-switch to more progressive bills as well. I've suggested that bipartisanship is dead, as if it was ever even alive in the first place. The GOP seems to have left the asylum to be run by the 'patients' and Nurse Michael "Ratchet" Steele. I've also suggested that since a simple majority won't be available because of circumstances on the part of BOTH sides of the aisle, whichever bill they choose will have to be put under the budget reconciliation hammer. BOOM goes the Hammer!

In short, our elected representatives, with their own good as gold private insurance will be 'earning' what we the people, the American taxpayer pay them to do, which is: work. Work for what the majority want. A Public Option. Singlepayer. Expand and reform Medicare if it's too much effort for you to re-invent the wheel again. Which is precisely what is happening at the moment... oh look, let's reinvent the wheel! Hey that wheel sure looks a lot like Medicare/Medicaid, doesn't it? If it was a snake, the idea would have bit them all on the ass by now.

If Medicaid/Medicare expansion and reform proves to be the wrong idea then at least by using the reconciliation model at the budget level you can go through everything with a fine toothed comb, dropping unnecessary or obstructive amendments like just so many nits. Then you squish them with the hammer. BOOM! Ultimately, in my opinion, it needs to go there. Imagine wave after wave of stimulus dollar funded flat panel screens everywhere, tuned to C-SPAN as they show the grueling blow-by-blow details of a budgetary fight. In both chambers! Senators having to teabag for themselves! Live from the house and senate... whew! It is not Watergate, but we have better modern production values, better visual effects. Plus, it would put all this recess nonsense to bed once and for all because the naysayers and obstructionists to the health care reform debate will have to declare themselves officially and on the record, not via shovel ready mass media soundbites and clown-like antics for the 'rubes' back home.

This fall it's either that or the live feed of the Iraq War Crimes trials from The Hague on C-SPAN3. Or that "Truth Commission" thing on C-SPAN2... hmm. Those can wait until January 2010, in my opinion. Get out the hammer, President Obama. Because it's hammer time. Time to hammer out some health care / health insurance reform.

With all that in mind and because originally I claimed I couldn't have said it better, because I can't -- I share Matt Taibbi and Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) taking Maria Bartiromo to task for her debating on the "have" side of the column that reads "Do you have private insurance?" -- why yes you do, Maria. Congratulations! You're a full 5/5 of a human being. You get premium health care! At premium cost of course. While your co-workers rail about "the biggest re-distribution of wealth EVER" concerning Obama's plans for the future, none of you can even see that it already happened during the Bush/Cheney years with Paulson as the bagman? Amazing. Oh no, that's right -- you and some of your former hedge fund managing co-workers are now reaping the benefits of the financial raping of America, aren't you? Often even aiding and abetting, if I do say. Because I do. Say.

Those of us working poor -- without benefits, without insurance and without pensions politely applaud your stunning achievement, Maria Bartiromo. Now we would like to be able to buy some insurance, too. Something more pedestrian and five-figure-ish, please. Make it a public option, single payer, with no exclusions and no limitations. Then use it as an even BIGGER HAMMER as it becomes the largest private insurer in the nation and proves itself worthy enough to drive the profit motivated weasels out of the health care insurance business forever as it pounds, pounds away, straightening their bottom lines.