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  September 5, 2009
  • President Obama plans to address the nation's school children -- Republicans are outraged.
  • Progressives attempt to fix out health care system which is twice as expensive as that in other civilized nations, yet with worse outcomes -- Republicans are outraged.
  • Wall Street gamed out entire financial system and the current administration proposes stiffer regulation -- Republicans are outraged.
  • It rains in Oregon -- Republicans are outraged.
  • A dog pisses on a tree -- Republicans are outraged.

Personally, I don't care what outrages the Republicans. They are against everything. The Democrats need to do what's right for people  -- even the dumb ass Republicans.

 

 
  August 27, 2009

I have a question and a statement about health care in the United States:

  • What are we paying insurance companies for health care?
  • Yes there are death panels -- and they're called  insurance companies. They decide who gets care and who doesn't.
 
  August 19, 2009

This is how you deal with crazy people.

At a recent town hall meeting, Senator Barney Frank responded to a question as to why he is supporting Obama's "Nazi policy" about health care.

His response: 

"When you ask me that question I'm going to revert to my ethnic heritage and answer your question with a question. On what planet do you spend most of your time?"

"You want me to answer the question? Yes. As you stand there with a picture of the President defaced to look like Hitler and compare the effort to increase health care to the Nazis, my answer to you is as I said before, it is a tribute to the First Amendment that this kind of vile, contemptible nonsense is so freely propagated. Ma'am, trying to have a conversation with you would be like trying to argue with a dining room table. I have no interest in doing it."

This is the only way to deal with people who will accept no answers that make sense.

See the video here. It's worth the few minutes it takes to watch it.

John L. Ferri

 

 
  July 9, 2009

If someone believes that homeopathy is a valid treatment for anything (except possibly as a placebo), then no amount of logic or sense on your part will convince them otherwise. So don't argue. Make fun of them. See this clip.

Did an airline lose your luggage, or break something of yours? And they admited it was their fault. And they still won't pay. See this clip. Click here for the full story. This guy is my hero.

JLF

 
  July 4, 2009

Breaking news - Michael Jackson is still dead, but the media are obsessed with covering him, rather than Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, North Korea, health care reform, the climate, etc., etc, etc. The main stream media sucks.

More breaking news - Sarah Palin announces that she will resign as governor of Alaska. The media, who is still covering the death of Michael Jackson, should be looking for the reason why, but they're not.

Even more breaking news - Sarah Palin is still a moron.

Lesson for the week -- if you want media coverage, don't die a few days before Michael Jackson. Remember Ed McMahon, Farah Fawcett, and Billy Mays!

JLF

 
 

April 21, 2009

The recently released torture memos show that CIA agents waterboarded Khalid Sheikh Mohammed 183 times in attempts to get information. I can imagine what went on there.

CIA agent #1: Did he talk?

CIA agent #2: No, he just screamed in agony and vomited and coughed up water.

CIA agent #1: Great. Do it again.

[later]

CIA agent #1: Did he talk?

CIA agent #2: No, he just screamed in agony and vomited and coughed up water.

CIA agent #1: Great. Do it again.

[later]

CIA agent #1: Did he talk?

CIA agent #2: No, he just screamed in agony and vomited and coughed up water.

CIA agent #1: Great. Do it again.

[later]

CIA agent #1: Did he talk?

CIA agent #2: No, he just screamed in agony and vomited and coughed up water.

CIA agent #1: Great. Do it again.

[later]

CIA agent #1: Did he talk?

CIA agent #2: No, he just screamed in agony and vomited and coughed up water.

CIA agent #1: Great. Do it again.

[later]

CIA agent #1: Did he talk?

CIA agent #2: No, he just screamed in agony and vomited and coughed up water.

CIA agent #1: Great. Do it again.

And they repeated this 176 more times. Are these guys who are supposed to be protecting our country idiots? 

Is this any different than the current crop of conservatives Republicans?

Conservative Republican #1: The rich aren't getting richer fast enough. Let's cut their taxes and screw the middle class and the poor.

Conservative Republican #2: Did it work?

Conservative Republican #1: Yes, the rich are getting fabulously wealthy, the middle class and the poor are in serious trouble, but the government is going broke.

Conservative Republican #1: Do it again.

[later]

Conservative Republican #1: The rich aren't getting richer fast enough. Let's cut their taxes and screw the middle class and the poor.

Conservative Republican #2: Did it work?

Conservative Republican #1: Yes, the rich are getting fabulously wealthy, the middle class and the poor are in serious trouble, but the government is going broke.

Conservative Republican #1: Do it again.

Repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat, etc etc etc ....

I think this is what is commonly called insanity.

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

April 16, 2009

Paul Krugman's recent Op-Ed  in the NY Times (Tea Parties Forever, 4/13/09) has finally explained everything you need to know about the Republican party -- they're crazy; they've been crazy for the last 15 years; and they will continue to be crazy as long as gullible crazy people support them.

    Today’s G.O.P. is, after all, very much a minority party. It retains some limited ability to obstruct the Democrats, but has no ability to make or even significantly shape policy.

    Beyond that, Republicans have become embarrassing to watch. And it doesn’t feel right to make fun of crazy people. Better, perhaps, to focus on the real policy debates, which are all among Democrats.

    But here’s the thing: the G.O.P. looked as crazy 10 or 15 years ago as it does now.

 How else would you explain the following:

1 - apologizing to Rush "the drug abusing hypocrite" Limbaugh.
2 - the vice-presidential candidacy of Sarah Palin.
3 - Michelle Bachman, who is crazier than Sarah Palin.
4 - the fear of same sex marriage.
5 - the solution to all problems is to cut taxes for the very very rich, even though tax rates now are lower than when that Republican god Regan was in office. Oh, I almost forgot - screw the middle class.
6 - Ann Coulter, crazier than Bachman or Palin.
7 - against "tax and spend" but fine with "borrow and spend", "steal and spend", "spend and spend", or "spend, spend, spend, spend, and more spend."
8 - good at making noise and stealing elections; bad at governing.

Conclusion: Republicans are crazy.

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

March 28, 2009

Even though my home town is small with a population of a little over 3000, it's still large enough to be "blessed" with more religious institutions than bars. I don't mind the bars -- at least they pay property taxes.

One of these religious institutions is the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses. I used to be able to identify them  -- usually 2 men, one much younger than the other, dressed like the Blues Brothers -- as they walked the streets spreading the word trying to recruit new blood.

However, the other day, my doorbell rang and two people -- a middle aged male with a middle aged female -- were there. They were very polite, identified themselves, and gave me a pamphlet about Easter. I took the pamphlet, thanked them, and they left.

They looked normal, dressed normal, and acted normal. I guess that the Jehovah's Witnesses must have changed their business model so they can now sneak up on you.

It's time for me to get a sign for my front door -- "The Hell with the Dog -- Beware of the Atheist."

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

March 14, 2009

Stewart vs Cramer

If you haven't heard of the interview of CNBC's Jim Cramer by Comedy Central's Jon Stewart, you need to get out from under that rock. Brilliant journalism by what other so-called journalists should be doing.

The best part, though, was when Stewart referred to Joe Scarborough as "Doucheborough" -- which is probably only on the unedited version.

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

March 12, 2009

During a March 9, 2009 interview, David Shuster of MSNBC's 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue asked Paul Krugman about John Boehner's suggestion of a government spending freeze as a corrective measure for the current economic situation.

Krugman's reply:

"We're right now in a situation which is known as the 'Paradox of Thrift' -- everybody is trying to save more, which makes sense for an individual, but when everybody does it at the same time, it destroys the economy and makes everybody worse off. What Boehner is saying is let's get the government to act as well, let's make sure that the same problems that are afflicting the private sector now spread to the public sector and let's make this recession worse. It's astonishing; it's as if the last eighty years of economic thought have just passed him by."

The above reply is 4:55 min. into the linked interview.

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

March 11, 2009

Yesterday, on the Science Daily website:

Reported in the March 10 issue of the journal Neurology, the findings demonstrate that higher temperatures, and to a lesser degree, lower barometric pressure, contribute to severe headaches. . . .

"Air temperature, humidity and barometric pressure are among the most frequent reasons that people give for their headache pain," explains Mukamal, who is also an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. . . .

The findings showed that of all of the environmental factors considered, higher air temperature in the 24 hours prior to the patient's hospital visit was most closely associated with headache symptoms, with a 7.5 percent higher risk of severe headache reported for each temperature increase of 5 degrees Celsius (approximately 9 degrees Fahrenheit). . . .

Finally, an explanation of why Rush Limbaugh,---who is full of, and produces copious quantities of, hot air---needed to illegally consume oxycodone and hydrocodone. 

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

February 24, 2009

Eat Tax the Rich

As noted by NY Times columnist Bob Herbert, in the first paragraph of the prologue of "Bold Endeavors: How Our Government Built America, and Why It Must Rebuild Now," the author, Felix Rohatyn, writes, "The nation is falling apart -- literally." He continues that the entire infrastructure of the U.S.A. is "rapidly and dangerously deteriorating," and estimates that it will require $11 billion annually just to repair our aging drinking water facilities, with an estimated additional $1.6 trillion over the next 5 years to upgrade other critical system to be "dependable and safe."

Just to be clear, $1.6 trillion is $1,600 billion, or $1,600,000 million, or $1,600,000,000,000. That's a lot of money. And how do the Republicans propose we pay for it? With tax cuts, of course.

When your household requires additional funds for housing or car repairs, medical expenses or insurance, or some other luxury like food, the Republican philosophy dictates that you contact your employer and demand a pay cut. It's the only reasonable thing to do.

Now take a deep breath and let's get back to the real world. Our government's income comes from taxes. The middle class have always paid their fair share, and those with much higher incomes used to pay their fair share in the past. So it seems reasonable to tax the rich as in the past so that they again pay their fair share.

But why should the rich pay more taxes? Because it is in their best interest to maintain the infrastructure that enabled them to become wealthy in the first place.

The current marginal federal tax rate is 35% for taxable income over $366,650. Income in lower brackets is taxed at lower rates. In the 1950s, this highest rate was 91% for income over $400,000. Adjusting this amount for inflation to 2009 dollars puts it at $3,151,000.

Will the rich object to higher taxes? Of course they will. But, as I mentioned above, it is to their benefit to maintain our infrastructure because they will suffer the most if the country degrades into oblivion. The poor and middle class are already living in the beginnings of this oblivion. 

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

February 23, 2009

Republican Commandments

  1. Unto every problem there is a solution, and that solution is tax cuts because "Deficits Don't Matter.

  2. Thou shalt cut taxes on the very rich, because the rich giveth to us.

  3. Thou shalt deregulate everything that donateth unto us.

  4. Thou shalt honor marriage between a man and woman as longeth as we can covet man or woman, or standeth wide in the head.

  5. Thou shalt complain and whine constantly, for blessed are the loud and obnoxious.

  6. Thou shalt ignore facts and common sense in all matters, for blessed are the uninformed and clueless.

  7. Thou shalt offer prayer as solutions to all problems, because prayer is easier and cheaper than competency.

  8. Thou shalt be loyal to Republican dogma, for they shall be repaid with wingnut welfare.

  9. Thou shalt honor life just before and up to birth, and just before and up to death. In between these, you're on your own.

  10. Thou shalt blameth all matters on homosexuals, except when it involves an otherwise loyal wingnut and only if he gets caught.

If you can add to the list, email me and I may add it.

John Ferri
jlferri@epix.net

 

 
 

February 22, 2009

Tasty Snacks

A friend of mine emailed the photo below with the comment that I inspired him after his toddler daughter had eaten a hot dog for lunch and some freezer biscuits came out of the oven dome-shaped.

 

.

 

Thanks to Kris for thinking of me.

 

 
 

February 12, 2009

Analog to Digital, But Still Crap

Even though congress decided to delay until June 2009 the switch from analog to digital broadcasting for U.S. television stations, approximately 60% of stations are ready now, have been ready, and will switch on the original date of February 17, 2009.

This will provide better reception, more bandwidth for other purposes, and a reason for a lot of people to buy new television sets.

What it won't provide is better programming. Crap with a better picture is still crap.

It is impossible to supply anything resembling quality programming for hundreds of channels that are on 24 hours each day. The airwaves need to be filled, and as long as the polls report that someone is watching, the airwaves will be filled -- which is why we have Fake Fox Noise News, Bill O'Reilly, most reality shows, most sit-coms, and most of what is broadcast.

I remember when there were only three channels, and at somewhere around midnight after the National Anthem, a test pattern was shown until early in the morning. What was broadcast may not have been top quality, but it was better than 95% of what we have available now. Less crap is better than more crap.

Television has---or had---such great potential as an educational tool. Not that entertainment isn't needed at times. But most of what is supplied is propaganda in the form of advertising and what is passed off as news. 

As for the analog to digital conversion, I hope that when the switch is made, something shorts out and the entire broadcast system is destroyed. That will leave us with the internet, books, and each other.

We'll survive just fine.

 

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

February 11, 2009

Cut Taxes, Rinse, Repeat, ...

According to a report Economic Stimulus: Issues and Policies issued on 1/23/2009 by the Congressional Research Service:

Fiscal stimulus can involve tax cuts, spending, or a combination of both. Tax cuts may be less effective than spending because some of the tax cut may be saved, which diminishes the effectiveness of the stimulus.

In a table on page 13, the report lists 2 types of policy proposals -- tax provisions and spending provisions -- and gives their estimate of the "One-year change in real GDP for a given policy change per dollar," as shown below:

Tax Provisions
1.02 - Non-refundable rebate
1.26 - Refundable rebate
1.29 - Payroll tax holiday
1.03 - Across the board tax cut
0.27 - Accelerated depreciation
0.48 - Extend alternative minimum tax patch
0.29 - Make income tax cuts expiring in 2010 permanent
0.37 - Make expiring dividend and capital gains tax cuts permanent
0.30 - Reduce corporate tax rates

Spending Provisions
1.64 - Extend unemployment compensation benefits
1.73 - Temporary increase in food stamps
1.36 - Revenue transfers to state governments
1.59 - Increase infrastructure spending

Yet, the Republicans -- even the centrists -- still keep clamoring for tax cuts.

Here is what any sane person would make of the current Republican platform, borrowed from Bill in Portland Maine on DailyKos:

First and foremost: lizard marshmallow hat in the wicker basket goes nefarious.

Second: All couch fur in pothole will be goat cheese on a sliding scale. Pearls are carrots drill bit woodpecker equally.

Third: Monkey farts on the naval base gets pitched to solar backgammon limitations. If there are no arias being sung in Poughkeepsie the maple tree gets ranch dressing.

Note: Stinky mop excites the trousers.

It's tough to negotiate with another group when they are insane. Yup, cut taxes, rinse, repeat.

 

John L. Ferri

 

 

 

 

February 10, 2009

They're back -- indulgences, that is. 

In recent months, Catholic dioceses around the world have reintroduced the concept of indulgences. Even earlier, in 2000, Pope John Paul II authorized his bishops to begin offering them again. Indulgences were decoupled, along with meatless Fridays and the Latin Mass, from mainstream Catholicism by The Second Vatican Council in 1960. 

Indulgences allow an absolved sinner to reduce punishment time in Purgatory, and are accumulated through certain prayers, pilgrimages, or devotions. Officially, they cannot be purchased. There are partial and plenary indulgences, and the Vatican Manual of Indulgences  to guide one through the intricacies of this complicated topic. 

Rev. Tom Reese, a Jesuit and former editor of the Catholic magazine America, said, "The good news is we're not selling them anymore," which means that at one time they did. Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn said that the reason indulgences are being reintroduced is "Because there is sin in the world." 

Somehow, someway, indulgences will become profitable for the church. Why? Because they desperately need the money because of reparations for all of those child sexual abuse cases that were finally resolved. There are probably a lot of priests hustling for their share of those indulgences. 

But don't worry. At least this atheist isn't, because everything that any religion tells you is all made up. The Bible -- all made up. Koran -- pure bull. Book of Mormon -- so much bullshit that it almost makes the Bible seem reasonable. Scientology -- this make the Mormons look like geniuses. 

Worried about sin. No problem. I'll forgive you for the paltry sum of $10 (U.S.) sent to my Pay-Pal account at emcw@epix.net. Note that I am an ordained minister, and that I absolutely guarantee that for $10 your immortal soul (or essence, or spirit, or mojo) will go directly to heaven when you die. If you can prove otherwise, I'll refund your money and add another $1,000,000 just for the hell of it.

John L. Ferri

 

 
 

February 10, 2009

This blog is now officially open. I'll be adding to it when the urge hits. The newest items will be at the top. Send comments to jlferri@epix.net. I may use your comments online, so please be civil.

John L. Ferri

 
 

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