Saturday, July 23, 2011

Demagogue Is Not a Verb

This has been a busy summer in every area of interest to me. Politics, music, my family life, religion, food...all of these things leading to question after question. So, if anyone has answers, I'm open. If not, well, I'm used to it.

1. There are so many things we can hate politicians for, and what they are trying to do to our education system is one of them. But could we PLEASE get over the fact that governors and presidents and congress people send their children to private schools? Can you IMAGINE how disruptive it would be for the children of state or national leaders to be in public schools? Really, let this one go. Focus on the other crap they are doing to us daily.

2. I love dill pickles. Recently I had one of those giant ones you can buy at the convenience store in the single serving plastic wrap full of pickle juice. Also being a long-time label reader, I made the mistake of turning the package around and reading this one. Did you know it does not contain one shred of dill? It also says on the nutritional information that it contains NO FIBER! Are pickles not simply cucumbers "pickled in brine?" Since when do vegetables not contain fiber?

3. Why does anyone mow in the dead of summer? During a severe drought no less? It's hard work that often leads to health problems for the out-of-shape. The machines most people use contribute a great many nasty emissions, and watering the grass just to keep it green in summer uses a great deal of a precious resource that we will one day not have enough of that is usable for the consumption of our exploding population. So, if we get rain, be happy, your grass will be green. If we don't, you save the air, water, reduce medical costs-everybody wins!

4. When did small business owners become millionaires and billionaires? I keep hearing the republicans talk about increasing taxes on millionaires and billionaires is raising taxes on "small businesses and job creators." What is the connection? The billionaires are the owners of really big businesses, and do not seem to be the target of any suggested new tax rates.

5. Speaking of the possibility of new tax rates; I think the top tax rate is either 35 or 39%. But you know what, it doesn't matter what the tax rate is if there are so many loopholes and the richest people and largest corporations pay none or very little.

6. This all brings up another question: The right keeps talking about how we have the "highest corporate tax rate in the world." So-which of these other countries would our republican brethren like to imitate? If the US is the best country ever made, and our people are the best and brightest, most fabulous people anywhere, which country would they like us to be like? Do they realize that most of those other countries also have completely different priorities for how their tax revenues are spent-some even including (HORRORS, GASP) health care for everyone? So-France? How about France? Italy? Germany? Pick one, Speaker Boehner. But remember, there is always a package that goes with such things, and if you don't like the package, don't try to imitate one little piece.

7. Do the anti-government right-wingers realize that people who hate the government and wish to dismantle it are called "anarchists?" Anarchists used to be considered left wing. Does anyone but me see the irony in that? Anarchy in the USA!! Brought to you by Sarah Palin.

8. Who are the people who have been unemployed for over two years? Are they from any particular sector of jobs? If it is the over-fifty crowd, infrastructure jobs might not really help. But we need to rebuild our infrastructure, no question. We need high-speed rail nationwide. We need to reorganize our cities to accommodate mass transit. But I am deeply concerned about the middle aged workers who have been unemployed for so long. Where can they go? I'm not sure that building highways and filling pot holes in roads are jobs that they can do.

9. What is the evolutionary purpose of women's attraction to shiny objects and adorning ourselves? It seems that every woman I know is drawn to jewelry and shoes. On the one hand, I can see that the adornment thing may be in order to attract a mate. But I don't know many men who say they ever notice a woman's shoes. But some women I know who never, ever wear makeup still love shoes. And if attracting a mate is the reason for attaching shiny objects to our ears, fingers, wrists and necks, why do middle-aged women still have this desire? We aren't looking for mates. We may just be hoping the ones we have don't last much longer. We can't reproduce anymore, so how does this characteristic help us pass on our genes?

10. Who is the governor of Alaska now?

11. When they were young, what did Pat Sajak and Vanna White want to be. Surely not the hosts of a stupid game show for the rest of their lives.

12. I watch Morning Joe most every morning. It is often just background noise while I get ready for work. But do the producers really think no one notices when they re-run first hour? They do it regularly, and I'm not sure why.

13. I'm a big fan of the Harry Potter series. I've read every book, and seen every movie. I've semi-followed the growing up of the three main stars. Last week I saw a story about Emma Watson, who has played Hermione since she was ten-years old. She came to the US to attend Brown University for a time, but it didn't work out. Anyway, the story last week said that Ms. Watson is going to study "abroad." At Cambridge. She's a Brit-how is Cambridge "abroad" for her?

14. Lastly for now, I have a question about the whole Rupert Murdoch British press tabloid scandal. The stories have to do with the management of these papers being invited to all the best parties, hobnobbing with politicians and the wealthy and famous. They then used these relationships to make big, splashy, ugly headlines. Well, hoodathunk? I've said for years that it makes me uncomfortable to see American journalists invited to these parties with the Washington elite-or any elite. But it continues. So why should anyone be surprised that the integrity of the press might be compromised by inside access?


Deegje said...

1) Agreed. It would have been a real pain in the ass to see Tricia Nixon riding in on that panther during pep rally's!
2)Put down that imposter pickle and back far away!
3) Personally, I have never understood watering grass just to cut it away. When I had a house, I liked my lawn rangy and rough and a little long. City government and my neighbors didn't (weird...I didn't like their loud music. My scraggly lawn didn't disturb their sleep but their loud music was disturbing to me. I digress...)
4) I am a very small business owner. Please point me to the millionaire line. I am humble. I don't need to be a billionaire. I filed taxes this year on my business. I paid 0 percent. I love that loophole that cuts my taxes. Um, maybe this would be a better point if I had actually earned money with my small business.
5) See #4 response.
6) Speaking as a millionaire small business owner, I prefer the Netherlands. The men are adorable! They are soft on soft drugs, prostitution is legal and highly regulated thus severely cutting the STD and teen pregnancy rate, they have National Health, speak 4 languages (Dutch, French, German, and English) all while having a very relaxed "live and let live" attitude. (Teabaggers and "Live and Let Live"? I wanna watch!)
7) Remember when "America. Love it or Leave it!" was a conservative chant to the left wingers who had criticisms of the Government? Oh the times they are a-changin'
8) After 20+ years of management. Frank (age55) applied for and was hoping for a position as a donut cooker at Dunkin' Donuts. He was "overqualified" He likes donuts and can press buttons and count. He had the qualifications. What he didn't have was the white collar crime conviction that enabled convicts to be reintroduced into society donuts.
9. Vibrators don't inseminate. Neutered Enzo still humps Abigail. Shoes make legs look pretty. In France men of all ages look at women of all ages vs the USA custom of ignoring women over 50. It' plaisir...all encompassing pleasure. I love to look good. For me, not for reproduction. It's not particularly feels good. That's one of the base needs. Are you saying that because we cannot procreate, we have to be ugly and not take pleasure in SELF? To stop having pleasure for pleasure's sake? I think it's more of a self esteem issue than a biological one.
Um mm
10).Sean Parnell is the current gov. of Alaska.
11) I asked the magic 8 ball and it said "answer unclear. Ask again later"
12) Probably because it starts on the East Coast at 6am and not many people are up at 5AM they rerun that first hour for Central time people. You and I are the exceptions who are up at 5AM.
13) I had a friend who is British and worked in Iran. He frequently went on holiday "abroad"...back home to England. Maybe it is from a pure geographical perspective and not a national one?
14) $$$$$$$$$$

Steve B. said...

Answer to #4 - They're fucking lying.

Vonnie Hix Shallenberger said...

Thank you for your comments! Deegje, I hope you do become one of those millionaire small business owners, but (sorry) when you do, I hope you contribute some revenue to our country. Democracy is not cheap. And our constitutions does say "Provide for the general welfare." I'm not a business owner at all, and 2/3 of my payroll deduction went to pay taxes. My refund was only 1/3 of what I paid in. So I don't feel much sympathy for General Electric paying zero!