Archive for the The Regime Category

The Sticky Note campaign

Posted in Cool Stuff, Culture, Economy, Heros, Take back America, The Regime, Thumbs Up! on May 4, 2011 by DaMook

Sticky Note Been to a gas station or grocery store lately? How’s that hopeNchange thing working out for ya? If you’re frustrated with high prices on just about everything, here’s a way to vent that frustration and get a message out (story here).

This time around, the Tea Party is taking action to draw attention to the fact that Barack Obama is gouging Americans by making sure gas prices are high by causing war in Libya, not opening Alaska to drilling and saving our national energy reserves to power Chinese tanks after China’s inevitable invasion of the U.S. We spoke with Chris Lotto, Arizona activist and co-creator of the “The ‘Hope and Change’ Sticky Note Campaign,” a movement that places anti-Obama sticky notes on gas pumps.

Last Saturday afternoon, Lotto, who lives in Phoenix, launched the Facebook call to “Purchase a pad of large sticky notes. Write on each one, “How’s that Hope & Change working out for you?” Every time you stop to fill your vehicle with gas, place your sticky note somewhere on the pump before you drive away. DO NOT be destructive in ANY way! Place your sticky note somewhere, so as not to impede the next customer’s ability to read the pump’s digital readout.”

By the end of this week, the page had over 8,000 fans who had sent out over 50,000 invites to join and dozens of pictures were rolling in of notes placed on gas pumps from Ohio to Wisconsin to Texas.

Hmmm. Sounds like fun. Here’s a related site for “Liberty Guerillas.”

Part of the charade employed by the existing Regime is to continue to make people believe that they are alone in their dissent and/or dissatisfaction with the ruling class. They need to isolate you and make you feel YOU are the outlier. A recent example is the derision lobbed at those who questioned Obama’s background and credentials.

This has been written about extensively in various professional military training manuals. It has also been the subject of many papers, dissecting the evolution of an underground movement that overthrew an entrenched Regime, where to outsiders, the “sudden collapse” of an oppressive regime catches them by surprise, when in fact, it was predictable all along.

The reason for the “sudden collapse” is that the group knowledge finally reached a tipping point, where the “dissenters” realize that they are the MAJORITY, not the minority as the Regime would have them believe.

Sticky notes, as advocated at gas pumps and on stores shelves, represent what is known as “Counter propaganda”.

It will be interesting to see if this gathers momentum and has any legs.

The sticking-political-messages-on-other-people’s-commodities tactic shows no sign of abating. It’s a long way to 2012, and the GOP proper has completely lost control of its constituency, so everyone should prepare for what’s probably going to be the most ugly election in recent history, and, with every free surface in the nation plastered with neon squares, I mean literally ugly.

We live in interesting times, folks…

Hope & Change update

Posted in Culture, FAIL, The Regime, UGH! on April 27, 2011 by DaMook

Two of the promises of Hope&Change was that the US would pull out of Afghanistan and Iraq and close GITMO. During the presidential campaign I had (briefly) discussed our dear comrade candidate with several good friends – people who I respect and like immensely. Their reasons for wanting to vote for the dear comrade were that he would get us out of the wars that Bush started and stop the torture at GITMO.

Just a reminder – after two years, here’s where we are:

If you’re tempted to say that we’re not actually at war with Libya, I pose this question: If a foreign power launched cruise missiles and air strikes on US soil, would you not consider that an act of war?

Well friends, how’s that hopey changey thing working out for you? Why are you strangely silent about this now?

Regime threatens Boeing over new SC plant

Posted in BIG Government, FAIL, The Regime, UGH!, Unions Suck on April 25, 2011 by DaMook

dreamlinerIn an effort to meet increasing demand for its new 787 Dreamliner, Boeing needs to expand its production capacity. In 2009 the company concluded that they needed to ramp up production in the face of stiff competition from Airbus (380) for the jumbo jet market. So Boeing went to the largest employee union to negotiate terms for the additional manufacturing capacity, even though it was not required to do so. After losing $1.8B to a 2008 strike, Boeing wanted some assurances that the unions wouldn’t cause problems for the new production lines. The union balked on the no strike terms, demanded a seat on Boeing’s board of directors and a guaranty that all future aircraft production remain in the Seattle area. Since the union refused to bargain in good faith, Boeing decided to move the new production lines to South Carolina – a Right To Work state. They bought a Vought production facility and began constructing the plant.

This story should have ended right there. Boeing tried to negotiate with the union for the new production lines and the union wouldn’t budge so the company decided to go elsewhere. Boeing announced their decision 18 months ago. The new production facility is scheduled to start running in July and there are currently 1000 new employees in South Carolina. Last week the story took a new and dangerous turn as the NRLB, part of the regime, decided to sue Boeing in an effort to block the new facility. Their reason for the suit? That Boeing did this in retaliation against the union (stories here, here, and here).

This week, the National Labor Relations Board filed a complaint over Boeing’s plans to open a plant in South Carolina. Boeing is not seeking to outsource work to a foreign country. Boeing has chosen a manufacturing location in the U.S. based on cost and risk factors. It plans to open a second production line of its 787 Dreamliner plane there. The plant has been built.

Boeing executives have acknowledged that they were reluctant to expand in Washington state because of the risk of a labor strike. Boeing’s workers in Washington belong to the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. Its plant in South Carolina would be nonunion.

Seizing on the words of Boeing executives, the NLRB inferred that the decision to choose South Carolina was retaliation against the union. The labor board demands that Boeing open the second production line in Washington.

Retaliation? Sounds more like the U.S. government — the NLRB — is retaliating against Boeing for seeking a better business climate in South Carolina. Appointments by President Barack Obama have given the five-member NLRB a pro-labor tilt.

Boeing tried to negotiate with the union – two years ago. The company is not moving all Dreamliner production, just the new capacity. No union jobs in Seattle are affected. If Boeing really wanted to stick it to the union, they could have moved the whole shebang to South Carolina.

The question here is this: Does the federal government have the authority to prevent a company from opening a plant wherever they choose? Apparently they believe they do. And, according to this piece (from the Washington Examiner), Boeing might be facing an uphill battle.

Boeing is not free to make its jets at the factory of its choosing, according to the National Labor Relations Board — it must make them in Washington state, using union labor.

This extraordinary abridgement of economic freedom might suggest an anti-Boeing vendetta from President Obama, except that this administration’s Export-Import Bank has subsidized Boeing with nearly $15 billion in loan guarantees in the past two years — roughly three-quarters of all of Ex-Im’s guarantees during that time.

This puts Boeing in an awkward position. The NLRB is surely overreaching in trying to block Boeing from making some of its 787s in South Carolina, a right-to-work state (NLRB calls this illegal retaliation against the machinists and aerospace workers union for its 2005 and 2008 strikes). In its effort to fight back, Boeing could be defanged by its reliance on big government. It’s a cautionary tale for Obama’s other corporate allies — from the drug industry that benefits so much from Obamacare to the tech, agrichem, coal, and other industries that have benefitted from the president’s corporatism.

Boeing and Obama, both based in Chicago, have a real political friendship. In 2008, Obama was by far the biggest recipient of campaign contributions from Boeing employees and executives, hauling in $197,000 — five times as much as John McCain, and more than the top eight Republicans combined.

So Boeing could be talking out of both sides of its mouth here. If you suck up to the government and politicians for benefits, don’t complain when they call in their chips.

In Boeing’s situation, it’s not only Uncle Sam who has leverage purchased with corporate welfare.

Washington state, Illinois and Chicago have given Boeing billions in favors. Do you think these Democratic governors wouldn’t squeeze Boeing, too? Does anyone doubt the new mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, would play politics with Boeing’s subsidies in order to help his old boss, Obama? (Of course, the disputed Boeing factory in South Carolina got hundreds of millions in state subsidies, too.)

Forever, business has been seduced by the promise of free money from government, along with regulation to clear out competition. Boeing has been the foremost among businesses partnering with Uncle Sam.

This is what our system of “Crony Capitalism” is all about…

Moron of the Day: Alec Baldwin

Posted in Culture, Economy, Huh? WTF?, The Regime on April 7, 2011 by DaMook

Alec Baldwin was in Washington for Arts Advocacy Day to lobby congress against cutting funding for the arts – you know, things like this and this. In an interview with CNS News, he said that the financial crisis has prevented our dear comrade leader from “doing any new spending.” Huh? WTF? Apparently Baldwin is not familiar with this:

obama-deficit-2011

No new spending?

 

Emmy award-winning actor Alec Baldwin told CNSNews.com on Capitol Hill that he believes the financial crisis has “crippled” President Barack Obama, preventing him from doing any “new spending.” Baldwin also said Obama has been doing “a lot” of “back-peddling” because he’s had to spend his whole first term “trying” to correct America’s course financially.

Following his appearance on Capitol Hill at a press conference with Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Rep. John Larson (D-Conn.) about campaign finance reform, CNSNews.com asked Baldwin if President Obama has lived up to his expectations.

“Well, I mean, I think so because I think that when you come into office and you want to put your mark on things — this is just my opinion, when you want to put your mark on things, you want to be able to spend. And what’s crippled Obama’s administration, as far as I’m concerned, is the financial crisis and it’s prevented him from doing any new spending,” said Baldwin, who publicly supported Obama in the 2008 Presidential election.

“He’s not able – if the country was as flush as it was under Bill Clinton and he had money — these things cost money — he could have made more of a mark,” said Baldwin. “I think right now he’s had to do a lot of counter-punching; a lot of back peddling. He inherited this crisis from Bush and Paulson. He had to extend the TARP. I think it’s been very difficult for him to spend his whole first term trying to, you know, correct our course financially. I think a second term of Obama, we’ll see a lot more of what we want to see from him.”

As you can see from the graph, Alec, our dear comrade leader has spent mountains of money – most of it borrowed. Yeah, he’s been correcting our course financially all right – dope…

No one is serious about cutting the federal budget

Posted in BIG Government, Congress, Economy, FAIL, Take back America, The Regime on April 4, 2011 by DaMook

This Friday is the deadline for congress to pass another continuing budget resolution to avoid a “shutdown” of the federal government (more here). The republicans are eager to impose budget “cuts” which the regime and the democrats characterize as “extreme” (more here). Of course this absurd political kabuki theater could have been avoided if the previous congress had done their job and passed a budget for 2011. Spineless republicans, who gained control of the House in the last election largely on the promise of fiscal responsibility, initially proposed $100B in spending cuts to the current budget and are now dialing back their proposal after being demonized by democrats and the state-run media. It appears that the magic number to reach a compromise is now around $33B. And just how significant is this figure? This story (from CATO) explains it:

Today the Cato Institute placed an ad in major newspapers highlighting specific spending cuts that policymakers should make to restore our country’s fiscal sanity and economic stability. Our public call for policymakers to demonstrate leadership on spending cuts comes in the midst of the on-going battle on Capitol Hill over funding the government for the remainder of fiscal 2011.

A graphic at the top of the ad measures the $61 billion in cuts that Republicans have proposed against fiscal 2011 estimates for total spending, the deficit, and interest on the debt. As the graphic shows and the ad notes, it is clear that “leaders and members of both parties are in deep denial about the fiscal emergency we face.”

There are news reports that Republican and Democrat negotiators are heading toward a compromise figure of $33 billion in spending cuts. Let’s put that figure in perspective alongside the GOP’s original proposal to cut a whopping $61 billion:

Budget Battle
This is not serious

Record spending levels…trillion dollar plus deficits…mountainous debt…a weak economy…

What, Congress worry?

Kind of puts it into perspective, doesn’t it? And what about that government shutdown? Rep. Mike Pence (R-TX) sums it up nicely (more here):

“…if congress can’t cut $61 billion from the budget, the government should be shut down.”

Here’s a great idea: Shut it down. After all, it doesn’t shut down completely – just “non-essential” services. (Don’t you just love that phrase? If they’re non-essential, why do they exist in the first place?) People will still get their social security, medicare/medicaid, and welfare checks. Taxpayers will still pay their taxes. Better yet, lets give the entire government a 21 month vacation – just keep a skeleton crew in DC. Congress could meet with their constituents, campaign for the 2012 elections, schmooze with lobbyists, whatever; then come back and start fresh in 2013. Twenty one months free of government FAIL – imagine the savings to the taxpayer!

Top execs score big $$ as Fannie & Freddie swirl in the toilet

Posted in BIG Government, Economy, FAIL, Government Waste/Fraud/Abuse, The Regime on April 3, 2011 by DaMook

The BOHICA goodness that is Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac continues (more here, here and here). As these two giant turds swirl around a flushing financial toilet, their top executives are collecting big paychecks (story here from the NYT). Since the government (that means you, the taxpayer) took over these two FAILs in 2008, we have pumped almost $154B into this toilet with no end in sight. This is the epitome of government double down on FAIL.

Regulators have approved generous executive compensation at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the taxpayer-backed mortgage finance giants, with little scrutiny or analysis, according to a report published Thursday by the inspector general of the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

The companies, whose fates are to be decided by Congress this year, paid a combined $17 million to their chief executives in 2009 and 2010, the two full years when Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were wards of the state, the report found. The top six executives at the companies received $35.4 million over the two years. Since Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were taken over in September 2008, the companies’ mounting mortgage losses have required a $153 billion infusion from taxpayers. Total losses may reach $363 billion through 2013, according to government estimates.

Charles E. Haldeman Jr., a former head of Putnam Investments, the giant fund management concern, joined Freddie Mac as its chief executive in 2009. He made $7.8 million for 2009 and 2010. Fannie Mae’s chief is Michael J. Williams, who has worked at the company since 1991. He received $9.3 million for the two years. Company officials declined to comment.

With hundreds of billions in government support necessary to keep the companies running, questions are arising about the nature of the pay packages and how performance goals are determined. The pay was approved by the housing finance agency, which is charged with conserving the assets of Fannie and Freddie on behalf of taxpayers.

Of course this is nothing new for Fannie & Freddie, which have been run like patronage mills for politically-connected plunderers. Using Enron accounting schemes, Clinton appointee Frank Raines skated away with over $90M in salary & “bonuses” after 5 years at Fannie. He and corruptocrat senator Chris Dodd also got sweetheart VIP loans from Countrywide pal Angelo Mozilo, who was recently fined $67.5M for securities fraud and insider trading violations.

The response from the FHFA (Federal Housing Finance Agency), government overseer of Fannie & Freddie, is not surprising. Apparently we need to pay big for quality management or the taxpayers will be harmed.

Edward J. DeMarco, acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, testified before Congress on Thursday about proposals to overhaul Fannie and Freddie. “I am concerned that legislation to overhaul the compensation levels and programs in place today with the application of a federal pay system to nonfederal employees carries great risk for the conservatorships and hence the taxpayer,” he said.

Last year, Mr. DeMarco testified that the executive compensation plans at Fannie and Freddie were designed to achieve the goals of the conservatorship and “align executive decision-making with the long-term financial prospects of the enterprises, and minimize costs to the taxpayer.”

Because shares of both Fannie and Freddie have little value, the companies’ executive compensation consists solely of cash paid out in base salary, deferred salary and long-term incentive pay.

One thing that Mr. DeMarco is forgetting here is that since the government has taken over these two turds, these executives are government employees. So his argument about attracting top management geniuses to “minimize costs to the taxpayer” is fallacious.

Why not find a retired business person with a track record of saving failed companies to take over and do what really needs to be done with Fannie & Freddie – shut them down with a minimal loss to the taxpayers. Someone like Herman Cain would probably do the job for nothing. Actually I’d rather see Mr. Cain in the White House.

Dear comrade leader accepts transparency award – in secret

Posted in Culture, FAIL, Huh? WTF?, The Regime on March 31, 2011 by DaMook

Kyle-Anne Shiver has this great post over at The PJ Tattler about our “hoped-for” dear comrade leader. I’m passing it along in its entirety because it’s short and says it all better than I could.

Well, here’s another Obama first, ladies and gents. Like the Peace Prize awarded on the wings of hope in Obama’s ethereal glow, now various open-government organizations have given the One an award for — hold your breath and count slowly to ten — hoped for “transparency.” A mere week after the most transparent administration in the history of the world was trying to explain why a Biden advance team would confine a lone reporter to a storage room to keep him from mingling with Party fat-cats in Florida, the glorious bastion of open-government moguls decide to preemptively award President Obama with the “transparency” award.

But that’s not the juiciest bit of this. The award was supposed to be given at a public ceremony at the White House with press pool and photographers, but the president decided to cancel all that “transparency” and go with a closed-door, private meeting without a single member of the press in attendance to receive his “transparency” award.

Politico has the whole story here.

Steve Aftergood, the director of the Project on Government Secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists, gave Politico the best quote:

“And in that sense, one could say it resembles the award at the Nobel Peace Prize,” Aftergood said. “It’s not because Obama brought peace to anyone but because people hoped he would be a force for good in the world, and maybe that’s the way to understand this award.”

So, here’s the Obama Standard applied in little Johnny’s world: Darling Johnny, following the example set by the President of the U.S., we’re not going to wait for you to learn your lessons or take your tests before giving you your report card. You look so swell, talk so brightly and sit up so straight and tall at your desk. So, we’re putting all our hope in you and giving you all A’s right this minute in the hope that you’ll be so overjoyed that you’ll actually earn them at some point in the future.

Then, we can apply the Obama Standard to earning salaries and give glowing book reviews before the books are written. Hope is such an amazing thing, isn’t it?

What a load of poppycock. The world has gone nuts.

Somewhere, Orwell is standing with his mouth agape.

This, apparently, is what “hope” is all about.

SHEEESH!