illusionofjoy: (Default)

Separated at birth?

Under the law, political mailings and phone calls are given special treatment. Regarding phone calls, many people are confused that, despite signing up for the "do not call" list, they still receive calls from political candidates vying for their votes. Many a campaign volunteer will tell you that they've been the recipient of an angry voice on the other end of the line stating, "I am on the 'do not call' list - do not call me!" Those in possession of said voices fail to understand that "do not call," as drafted only applies to telemarketers - i.e.: commercial organisations. Political campaigns are not restricted by that law, which is why the phones of voters get dialed with impunity every election season by both man and machine. Likewise, there is a list for one to opt out of receiving commercial solicitations in your mailbox. But, again, this does not apply to political campaigns.

Should I ever run for and win political office, I've decided to propose a bill limiting the number of campaign mailings a candidate can send out within any given period of time. I'd name this bill the SPAM act - "Schmotzer's Persistent Annoying Mailings" - in dubious honour of my least favourite local politician. In his campaign to fill out the remainder of Chelsa Wagner's term and win the Democratic Primary to run for his own two year term, Martin Michael Schmotzer has gone into overdrive with the resources available to him as the owner of a direct mail company, figuratively "blowing up" the mailboxes of every voter in the Pennsylvania State Legislature's 22nd district. For the past three weeks, True and I have received a near daily mailing from his campaign - usually doubled, since he seems to think that we each need our own individual slice of Schmotzer propaganda (every other campaign sending mailings sends one flyer - generally addressed to "The Warren Family" or some variation thereof).

The latest fliers coming from his campaign have been borderline slanderous against opponent Erin Molchany. In it he accuses Molchany of being "bankrolled by Big Shot Republicans" (none of whom he can name, apparently) as well as saying she sends out "hate mail" and is "supported by Extremists" (again, unnamed). On the opposite side of that particular flier, Schmotzer compares himself to other candidates with a particularly laughable chart of falsehoods and "qualification" padding. If any of his shtick is to be believed (and a quick Google search disproves most of it), one is not qualified for office in the 22nd if among other things:

  • One was not born in Pittsburgh
  • One did not live in Pittsburgh's South Hills for all one's life
  • One is not married
  • One does not have children
  • One is not a lifelong Democrat (did Schmotzer register as soon as his mother pushed him out?)
  • One is not an endorsed Democrat (more on the curiosities of his endorsement below)
  • One did not reduce school property taxes (isn't reducing taxes a Republican talking point? Why does Schmotzer hate public education?)
  • One is not a Democratic Party official (how Tammany Hall)
  • One is not a Union Member
  • One is not a small business owner (again, isn't this a Republican talking point?)

I have to be blunt: this man is pulling things out of his ass - and I really think he is doing it because the more people get to know Schmotzer, the less they want him anywhere near elected office.

Schmotzer began his political career as a member of the Baldwin-Whitehall school board from 1987-1993 and then again from 2007-2011. During his time on the board he apparently wasn't adverse to creating tension and discord and he even took a page from the John Boehner school of oratory when he made his final exit.

In between stints on the school board, Schmotzer was the Deputy Clerk of Courts for Allegheny County. In 1997, he was accused of embezzling $50,000 from the taxpayers' coffers and all but confessed to the crime when he "paid back" the money with "interest." Understandably, the Molchany campaign has reminded voters of this transgression and as far as I'm concerned, once you embezzle money you should be barred from public office. Schmotzer, of course, sees things differently. In a letter to voters in the 22nd dated April 12th, 2012, he wrote the following:

I am writing to respond to a negative mailer sent to you by my opponent staing, "Marty Schmotzer has a record too". [sic] What she is referring to is something that occurred 16 years ago. I can tell you the mailer tells of this story from one viewpoint only and does not tell the whole story. This chapter of my life went on for 9 years and was absolutely resolved with the Superior Court of Pennsylvania dismissing the case.

Schmotzer goes on to sidestep the issue for the next three paragraphs, instead choosing to trumpet his time as a school board member. One can nearly hear the jowly voice of Richard Nixon saying, "I am not a crook" as one reads this. Or, if one is of a younger generation, one could perhaps compare this to a Facebook message from an ex-lover desperately wanting to get back into your good graces. The final paragraph:

I work hard, but I'm far from perfect. On April 24th, I humbly ask for your support. I have the experience, maturity and energy to serve in Harrisburg with dignity and impact. Thank you very much.

It is true that Schmotzer has plenty of political experience. In fact, one could say that he has a damning amount of political experience. Pete Wagner apparently owes Schmotzer a favour or is being blackmailed. Again, the Pennsylvania Progressive:

Marty Schmotzer, the former Allegheny County Deputy Clerk of Courts who stole $50,000 from taxpayers and reneged on $25,000 to the IRS received but 25 legitimate votes from the Party's Exec Board to fill the special election nomination for Wagner's vacant seat (she is now Allegheny County Controller). The State Party by laws are quite clear on the procedures: fifty members vote and 26 votes are required. By the close of the voting Schmotzer had 25 votes. Here's the really amazing part of this scandal though: Burn added fifteen additional voters. Nothing in the By Laws permits this and it has never been done before.

The "powers that be" decided Marty was their man for this special election even though it'll be impossible to win. If I'm a Republican I simply pour money into direct mail and radio ads reminding voters of Schmotzer's dishonesty and run away with this seat. I could win this one with a ham sandwich. Burn seemed to think differently though and forced the guy through by packing the Board and thumbing his nose at the rules.

It seems to me that Michael Martin Schmotzer is the perfect party machine politician. And you know how I feel about those. But then again, perhaps I am too harsh. Perhaps I shouldn't see the Easter card sent by his campaign as a ham-fisted attempt at pandering (because we all know that none of his potential constituents could possibly be atheists, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, etc.). Perhaps Schmotzer is actually a nice guy who made a few mistakes because he's clueless.

The argument for cluelessness is certainly buttressed by a phone exchange I had with his campaign less than a week ago. I received a voice mail from his campaign coordinator asking for my support. I returned the call leaving a voice mail asking to be removed from their phone list (most campaigns will acquiesce if you state that you wish to receive no further calls directly from the campaign). Instead of sweet silence, I received a call not five minutes later from a woman who had seen my number on caller ID, but who had obviously not listened to the voice mail I'd left.

She didn't even begin by identifying herself, " just called here...?" There was a pregnant pause.

"Is this, the Schmotzer campaign," I finally asked, breaking the silence.

"Yes, yes it is," came an excited reply, "are you interested in volunteering?"

"No," I said, "I actually called because I want to be removed from your calling list. I will not be voting for Schmotzer for any office."

"I'm sorry you feel that way."

Others have written about less cordial encounters directly with the candidate. A post on, "Martin Schmotzer’s Ongoing Disregard For the Law," shows just how much Schmotzer has not reformed:

Today, Schmotzer came to our house and shoved a door hanger type flyer through the mail slot.


My biggest issue is how Mr. Schmotzer responded. He admitted that he did it because the door knob on “these houses” don’t accommodate his fancy hangers. He justified it. He tried to redirect me by pointing to the ACDC committeeman sitting in the vehicle nearby. He just didn’t accept responsibility. And when I didn’t back down, he walked away with a dismissive gesture.

Seriously? A man who stole $50,000 from Allegheny County taxpayers and wants us to believe he’s reformed blatantly violates federal law and doesn’t give a damn. Why on earth would anyone be foolish enough to think he would conduct himself any differently if he were elected?

He won’t. Its like an Orie/Veon entitlement mantle is already wrapped around his shoulders and we can expect either nothing or egregious conduct.

In a follow-up post it was noted that Schmotzer subscribes to the Rush Limbaugh school of apologising.

And there is the crux of why Michael Martin Schmotzer should never see the interior of an elected office ever again: entitlement. Schmotzer's entire campaign is about how he deserves whatever he wants whenever he wants it and damn anyone to hell who gets in his way - especially those pesky voters! From his pandering letters, to his blatantly false attacks on his opponents to his campaign signs with a colour scheme fit for a used car dealership touting the very Chicagoeque, "vote twice, it's okay," Schmotzer's campaign has been the sleaziest, most disgusting spectacle I have witnessed in recent memory. And even more disturbing is that the paper trail shows that he has always been like this.

As far as I'm concerned, Michael Martin Schmotzer is a wart on the arse of good government. He needs to be frozen out and permanently removed from the body politic. Let's hope the majority of voters in the 22nd agree with me tomorrow.

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There are few things worse in politics than a true believer. I should know, because for too many years I was one of those misguided schmucks who voted for the Democrat under the delusion that I was helping to push my country in a more progressive - nay, liberal - direction. It didn't take long for the overwhelming avalanche of evidence to fall on my head, burying me in the conclusion that, indeed no, that is not how politics works. I completely washed my hands of defending the Democratic Party as an institution when Barack "Barry the DINO" Obama was selected as the nominee for the party's presidential candidate in 2008.

Those who don't dabble in revisionist history will support the fact that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote and should have been the nominee. One takeaway: apparently it is not okay for the Supreme Court to ignore the will of the voters and appoint George W. Bush as president, but it is okay for the Democratic Party to ignore the will of the voters and appoint he who lost the popular vote.

While there hasn't been a sham of a convention in Pennsylvania's race for Democratic nominee for state attorney general, I've gotten a taste of nastiness which reminded me of 2008. The two candidates vying for the nomination are Patrick Murphy and Kathleen Kane. Given that both candidates are evenly matched on the issues, I decided that I'd vote for Kane. It wasn't a difficult decision for me; as far as I'm concerned the political arena is way too much of a sausage party so I've got no qualms about engaging in an act of sexual discrimination (against my own gender, no less) and voting for the woman in the race. When I posted this declaration on my Facebook wall, it didn't take long for someone to remind me that while it is perfectly acceptable to vote for a man merely because he is black (or half-black, as the case may be), voting for someone merely because she is female is a big no-no.

It was only one individual berating me for my statement, but as the comment thread wore on, I began getting flashbacks to four years ago when I had the audacity to support Hillary Clinton's campaign for President. I was told that Kathleen Kane did not have a strong pro-choice record and that if I cared about the issue of a woman's right to choose, I should be voting for Patrick Murphy. I countered that the candidates were equal on the subject. The only difference between Kane and Murphy is that the latter is pandering in his campaign ads while the former is more aware of the job of attorney general in stating the truth in that "one does not get to pick the laws one has to uphold." The Mondale method of stating the hard, unpleasant facts during a campaign will likely lose her this election.

Apparently that wasn't enough for this person who persisted in telling me how foolish I was not to jump on with Murphy who has "a long record of defending woman's right to choose" and who is "endorsed by Planned Parenthood and NOW." I wasn't changing my stance nor was I taking the bait, which led to a slur of insults being hurled my way and an assertion that I "may as well vote for Sarah Palin," every so-called progressive's favourite right-wing punching bag. I finally shut down the conversation by stating that one can disagree with my reasons for voting the way I will, but one does not have the right to "enter my house" and insult and berate me for it. The United States is a nation filled with people who, to one degree or another, are voting for reasons others think are "stupid" or "uninformed." While one is well within his or her right to grouse about the situation within their own forum or engage in a debate to try and change the mind of another by presenting their opinion, a line is crossed when one degenerates into name-calling and attempted shaming and crass manipulation. The conversation - such as it had become - ended and the person hurling the vitriol has since dropped me as a friend on Facebook (good riddance, my friends list on that site is way overdue for a purging anyhow).

Ever since Obama's campaign in 2008, I've really come to believe the one can often glean the character of a candidate by the way his or her strongest supporters comport themselves. In 2008 Obama's most zealous supports were a nasty bunch hurling accusations of racism and flat out telling their opponents how "stupid" they were. While a candidate can not control his or her supporters, they can influence them and the Obama camp did very little - if anything - to reign in the crusade of the true believers.

While I've only encountered one incident of a Murphy supporter berating me for cheering on the opposite team, I wonder if this woman (yes, a woman was berating me for not voting for a man - woman are their own worst enemies at times) represented the exception or the rule. Murphy's early campaign advertisements have been obviously pandering - nothing unexpected there - where he trumpets how pro-choice he is. It's the same teaser that Democratic politicians have been dangling in front of women's faces for the past several decades, purporting to defend a woman's right to dominion over her own body while in actuality, Roe is all but dead. The right-wing culture warriors are winning, namely because they scare women into voting for Democrats who, instead of actually fighting back, rest on the assurance that they can merely promise to fight and in making the promise, that will allow them to maintain elected office. It is lip-service of the worst kind.

But I digress; up until tonight I hadn't seen a Murphy ad which I could qualify as nasty. However, on television this evening Murphy decided to take up a mud ball and launch it as hard as he could at Kathleen Kane. Along with my favourite Murphy-maniac's assertion that Kane isn't pro-choice enough, she's also anti-union and gave money to the campaign of Republican Governor Tom Corbett. I did some digging to try and see if these claims had any substance and have, thus far, come up empty-handed.

It seems to me that Murphy's campaign is getting desperate and is worried that pandering isn't enough, thus it is time to scare registered Democrats into line. All I could think is that I know at least one Murphy supporter who would totally approve of these tactics. Because, hey - politics ain't beanbag and who cares how you win so long as you win?

The disciples of Obama learned well.

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From KDKA:

Catholic Bishop David Zubik used strong words today to describe his unhappiness at the Obama Administration.

The issue is over whether Catholic-run institutions should be required to offer their employees an insurance plan that covers contraceptives.

In a personal column in the Pittsburgh Catholic newspaper, Zubik accused the Obama Administration of saying to all Catholics, “To Hell with you.”

To his long-winded and self-pitying diatribe I have only this to say to Bishop David Zubik: to hell with YOU!

I can barely contain my rage in reading a piece where Zubik dares to invoke the First Amendment's establishment of freedom of speech to undermine it's equally important separation of church and state. I'll be the first to criticize the Obama administration for its failings, but in telling the Catholic Church that it is not allowed to force its rigid and outdated ideology on employees of their institutions they have my unwavering support. Just because someone is employed by a Catholic institution does not necessarily mean that the employee in question follows the faith; as such, they should not be oppressed by its dogmas. Even those of the Catholic faith should have the choice as to which matters of church doctrine they adhere to. The salient point being this: it is a personal decision which should be free from the shackles of predetermination. If there is a god who gives each individual free will, then what right does any mere mortal have to claim dominion over another?

I am a strident proponent of separation of church and state. By contrast, Zubik is obviously just another little man advancing the Catholic church's best efforts to break down that barrier (to which they've had degrees of varying success throughout the history of the United States). While he claims that refusing to provide contraceptives and so-called abortifactants is a matter of conscience, he completely and conveniently ignores the way workplace-driven health insurance actually functions in the United States. Workplace health insurance plans are actually bulk deals which allow multiple people (the employees) to purchase health insurance at a far discounted rate from what each would be paying as an individual. As the insurance plan is ultimately purchased by the employee via a paycheque deduction, neither Zubik nor any other Catholic employers need to worry about the blood of aborted fetuses nor the stain of wasted seed upon their hands. Once more: it is all up to the conscience of the individual - and just because a good Catholic has access to contraception does not mean he or she is being forced to partake. I do believe there are several passages in the Bible regarding temptation.

To drive the point home - it is not about free speech or conscience or even the Obama administration insulting Catholics; Bishop David Zubik's heavy-handed and misguided diatribe is about one thing and one thing alone: control. For centuries the Catholic church has attempted to maintain control over the bodies and souls of not only those in their flock, but those outside of it as well - particularly those with two X chromosomes. If President Obama well and truly did say, "to hell with you" to the Catholic church and their attempts to advance their theocracy in the United States then I applaud him. Were I more theologically inclined, I might even say that there is a special hell for Zubik and his ilk - those myopic malcontents who would oppress us under the ludicrous notion that their rights were being violated.

Again, Bishop David Zubik: to hell with YOU!

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I have to be honest: it doesn't take very much to piss me off and these days there is very much to be pissed off about. I try to avoid conflict because, let's face it, fighting the world is a time and labour consuming chore with little to no reward. And once you've defeated all of the morons of the world, who are you going to brag to about your victory anyhow?

The 2012 election season began sometime in the middle of the summer. That alone was enough to be annoying, seeing as how it overshadowed any regional and local elections which were held this November. Yes, Virginia, there's an election every year, though I know you can't be bothered to vote in the non-glamorous non-presidential elections. Anyway, the media has been focused on the laugh-fest that has been the contest for the republican nomination. Last I checked, their frontrunner had been turned into a Newt...and it won't get better...

Of course, the Obama campaign hasn't been inactive. Not a day goes by that I don't get an email from their operation requesting a donation. They are under the mistaken assumption that just because I am a registered Democrat I am not just a reliable Democratic vote, but also a reliable cash cow. Newsflash for Obama and his sycophants: I'm unemployed and what money I do have won't be going to help keep someone in the White House whom I didn't want there in the first place.

I still remember the 2008 campaign and election. People will still tell me to "get over" the fact that Obama stole the nomination from Hillary Clinton. Sure, I'll get over that when I get over Bush stealing the election for Al Gore in 2000. How'd that end up working out? But more to the incising was the arrogance of Obama's supporters and members of his campaign staff. Before the age of Obama, I'd never been called a stupid racist for daring to question a politician. I and many others had those direct insults hurled point blank along with a plethora of slightly more subtle psychological warfare.

Well, if you loved that bullshit in 2008, it's coming back for 2012! The suck-ups and sycophants have been giving their marching orders. The following ended up in my Twitter feed because it was retweeted by Dan Savage:

pari_passu Casey
If GOP win in 2012, they might appoint 2 to Supreme Court; giving them a 7-2 majority. Remember this when saying you won't vote. #p2 #p21

I heard that one in 2008 too - the old "gotta vote Dem because of the Supreme Court" mindfuck to try and whip us liberal kitties into line. I couldn't hold back:

illusionofjoy Seth Warren
@pari_passu It's so cute when the Obots try and scare me into voting for Barry the DINO. What didn't work in 2008 won't work in 2012.

illusionofjoy Seth Warren
@pari_passu And while I'm feeling pissy, stop calling them the GOP. They're the republican party. Or raging lunatic assholes, if you prefer.

If the Washington Post won't call the republicans the GOP then why should any of the rest of us? I've been trying to get people to stop using GOP for years. I'm still trying to get people to stop calling the anti-choice crowd "pro-life." But I digress...

I used to buy into that whole dictum of settling for the "lesser of two evils so as to not waste my vote" too. Now I'm older, more cynical and even harder to impress than ever. If the Democratic Party wants my vote, they have to earn it (or in Obama's case at the 2008 Democratic National Convention: steal it). You can call me names, you can threaten me, you can do all sorts of stupid shit to try and get me to "fall in line," but this is the United States of America and I'm free to not fall in line. If I don't like the direction the Democratic Party is taking, why should I endorse candidates which espouse what I disapprove of?

I'm not deluded: the system we use to elect our so-called representatives has been manipulated into being a duopoly and is in dire need of an overhaul. But if you tell me I'm wasting my vote for refusing to pull the lever for a Democrat in favour of a non-mainstream party candidate or a write-in of "none of the above," I can only say that my vote would have been wasted regardless. I may as waste it in a way which sends however small of a message to the bean counters at the board of elections.

It's simple: if you are going to vote for Obama or any other Democrat because you are scared of the republicans being so much worse, then you are a coward and a fool. A government with a frightened citizenry - especially one willing turn against one another - is not a democracy. The best government is that which is frightened of its citizens. I refuse to be scared and I refuse to vote for Barry the DINO or any other candidate who does not reflect a good majority of my political alignment. If you want my vote, you'd better get on your hands and knees and fucking beg for it!

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The mainstream media needs a good kick to the collective yarbles. Damn near every "news" article I saw today regarding the special election in Massachusetts used the phrase "epic upset" and claimed that people rejected the Democrats for going too far left.


There is nothing "epic" about Brown's five-point win.

There is also no rejection of the Democrats' far-left agenda because there is no far-left agenda to reject. In fact, the current crop of Democrats have been leaning right a few degrees ever so slightly shy of the Republicans.

Fucking morons, all of them.

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Barack Obama's plan for sending 30,000 more troops to Afghanistan - just in time for Christmas - is irrefutably stupid. I am completely through with this piece of shit president. Oh, and you Obama apologists should ask yourself this: would you support this action if McCain was doing it? Think long and hard and don't bother to comment if you're going to say something stupid. This "racist, low information voter" had his fill of stupid during the primaries and general election of 2008.

And in case you're wondering, I wouldn't support any possible president pulling this bullshit. Not Barack Obama, not John McCain, not Hillary Clinton.

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With Obama now in office, I've seen a multitude of articles from those who were his self-appointed fluffers during the campaign now finding themselves disillusioned with him. This week's Pittsburgh City Paper contained a cover article which I threw down and ceased reading after the first sentence of the second paragraph:

Read more... )
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"Cat Scratch Fever" is a shitty song and the man who wrote it, Ted Nugent, is a shitty human being. We all know this of course, but in a conversation I was told that rumour that the Nuge (which can be slurred to rhyme with "douche") refuses to have a fat waitress serve him when he is in a restaurant. Now, I find this particularly offensive as I revel in the opportunity to be served by a fat waitress. So, another stuck against that pile of cock vomit known as the Motor City Madman...but here's the big unanswered question: what the fuck is this gun-loving wildman hunter who kills his own food doing in a fucking restaurant in the first place?

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"I suppose that if I don't sign, I don't get these," I said, referring to the stack of DVD-Rs which sat upon the counter. The discs contained 130 gigabytes worth of data, the contents of my desktop PC including every song I'd recorded from Division onward plus four new pieces which hadn't been burned to back-up discs, having not been completed. The document which was laid before me stated that I was completely satisfied with the repairs done by the Geek Squad office located at the Best Buy in Pittsburgh's South Hills. I wasn't satisfied - how could I be? In three weeks, the Geek Squad had not repaired my computer. Still, they were willing hold my data hostage until I told them I was happy with what had been done.

Read more... )
illusionofjoy: (No Obama)
I am sick of people reminding me to vote.
I am sick of people knocking on my door for candidates.
I am sick of people calling me for candidates.
I am sick of people questioning my vote.
I am sick of people trying to make me feel guilty about my vote.
I am sick of people accusing me of not knowing what I'm doing with my vote.
I am sick of this election.
I want it over!
illusionofjoy: (No Obama)

In of himself, Barack Obama makes me queasy. However, when you mix in his supporters, then I get to the point where I may actually vomit. Today, the Associated Press, now in the business of propaganda for unqualified democratic candidates published not one, but two articles about how Obama is just so much cooler than that crusty old John McCain. The first article:

Read more... )
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The busybody basement-dwellers are crawling out of the woodwork on [ profile] pittsburgh, it seems. You know the type: too much time on their hands, too interested in the lives of others to bother concerning themselves with their own business.

Exhibit A: whiny vegan thinks that a "No fishing for carp" sign means no fishing altogether and is shocked, shocked to discover that the authorities don't give a shit if people fish for other species in the pond to which the sign refers. Finally, she reveals her true reasons for the post in a comment: "Personally, I'm vegan. I'd like to see people not be allowed to kill fish anywhere." Translation: "I'm a douchebag who wishes to impose my beliefs and way of living upon everyone else and I'm just using the community and this sign as a flimsy veggie-headed pulpit."

Exhibit B: Mr. Shit-Don't-Stink is offended by the odors coming off the bodies of some of the patrons of - it is later revealed - a Goth club. He helpfully suggests that people bathe and put on deodorant before showing up, even going so far as to quote De La Soul for impact. Of course, this douchebag completely overlooks the inherit problems of clubs: small spaces + physical activity + smoke = sweating and stink. Add to the equation that there are a whole lot of velvet or vinyl-clad asses on that dancefloor and there's bound to be some body odour, for those truly getting their groove on. Even those who aren't dancing up a storm will stink of cigarettes just by virtue of being in the club, so fucking deal with it, Mr. Perfume Farts.

Frankly, people make me sick and if I had one wish it would be the ability to take a two by four to the skulls of those I deemed too useless to live with impunity. The world is full of meddlers, busy-bodies and tut-tutting moralists who need to get the fuck over themselves and leave the rest of us alone!

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So, here's something people should know: if, for some ungodly reason, you want to take my picture, ask first. If I know you, I'm likely to agree. If I don't know you, I'm far less likely to agree without a compelling argument from your side. DO NOT simply run up to me, point a camera in my direction and quickly snap a photo, like some jagoff clad only in his underwear did to me at the club tonight!

Are we clear on this? Good.

illusionofjoy: (Hillary Clinton 2008)

I am finding myself at a crossroads with Barack Obama. It is becoming difficult for me, no matter how hard I try, to separate the man from his fans. And really, the man I have no quarrel with, but the cheerleading squad who has attached themselves to his campaign is driving me to distraction. Frankly, I am sick of hearing about how wonderful this guy is. He is not the second coming. He is not all four Beatles rolled into one. He is not the best thing since sliced bread. Barack Obama is simply a man running for public office, and anyone who places him on a pedestal does their country a great disservice. Politicians are to be held under the boot heels of the populace to be scrutinised and dissected, not elevated on high to be worshipped.

Read more... )
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Ever since I left the tattered remains of my college career behind and moved into my own rental unit, I began receiving credit card offers, generally at the rate of one per month. I'd toss these out, as school alone had left me in enough debt and desperation. Fast-forward to the present and my school loans are paid off, except that someone doesn't seem to realise this, leading to an assault on my paycheque which began last year. It's a funny world we live in where somehow it is okay to harass a person continuously over the phone for money that they do not have any record of owing, but when said person tries to fight back, it is perfectly acceptable to stonewall them. Rest assured, I intend to continue sending nastygrams to the address provided by my HR department.

But I digress...back on topic to the credit card offers: I recently decided to actually take one of these companies up on their offer. "What's this," you may be asking, "have you suffered a wire-hangar lobotomy, my boy?" Maybe...

A situation has arisen where I actually need a credit card, otherwise the thought would have never crossed my mind, much less the action my hands. I have a trip planned for the not-so-distant future and I fear that [ profile] joi_division's car would not survive the distance I intend on driving. Therefore, it is necessary to rent a car, and therein lies the rub. In order to rent a car, one must possess a credit card (but it's okay to put one's life on the line renting a U-Haul truck with just a debit card, as an aside). So, with my hand forced, the strange configurations of Greyhound not being optimal for the journey, I have set forth to procure myself a tool of potential financial Armageddon.

In actuality, I tried taking total control of my credit destiny for myself, applying for a card which had no monthly fees, a good rate, etc. I was promptly rejected due to the artificial black mark on my credit report (capitalist pigs). So, I've reluctantly decided to pursue one of the many mailed-in offers I've received where I've apparently been "pre-screened" and "pre-approved" (translation: "we've found a sucker"). At the moment, I'm waiting to find out if "pre-approval" actually translates into final approval, at which point I plan on taming this beast of plastic with payments in full each time I make a charge on it. In other words, I intend to be the type of customer credit card companies hate: one that they can't make any interest payment money off of because the charges are constantly paid off.

Now, the funny have been waiting for the funny part, right? Yeah, so have I. It seems that ever since I accepted the offer for the one credit card, the offers for others have been pouring in with more frequency. Perhaps this isn't actually the case and I simply haven't noticed them before, but just this week I've already received two - and it's only Tuesday! It just goes to show that, no matter how dark and disgusting one's credit report may be, corporate America is always willing to try and put their filthy paws onto whatever finances you may have remaining.

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Hey, Georgie W. - where the fuck is Osama, huh? The fact that he's still out making videos means you're doing it wrong!

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Before the Interstate 35W Bridge over The Mississippi River in Minneapolis fell, two rural republican congressmen from Pennsylvania decided to block efforts to add tolls to Interstate 80. While I am not a great fan toll roads - particularly the open system of tolling that is being proposed for I-80 - I understand that, pragmatically, the money for mass transit and infrastructure funding needs to come from somewhere. Given that I rarely ever drive I-80 (I don't think I've ever driven it, to be honest), the fact that they were going to toll the road to free up money for other aspects of the transportation budget was not a particularly bitter pill to swallow.

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Seth Warren

May 2017

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