I will be out for most of the day. So this is it until the evening. Savor it. Luckily, this edition of Odds and Ends at least has a couple of fun items. And the Walmart story is especially great. We live in a really screwed up nation.
One of the things I will be doing today is going to see Escape Plan with my brother. I have an open mind about. But what are the odds? It is a Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger vehicle. I expect that tomorrow night I will write another apoplectic review. So fun times ahead!
- Heritage Action has a “scorecard” websites where they rank all the current members of Congress. It’s actually a fairly good resource for liberal voters. If the score is low, the politician is good. But beware! Heritage Action is so conservative that Darrell Issa only got a 65% rating. Paul Ryan got a 69%. Even crazy and stupid Louie Gohmert only got a 90%. What could he have done to displease Heritage Action?! My “blue dog” Democratic representative Mike Thompson got 9%. Senator Dianne Feinstein got 4%. And my hero, Senator Barbara Boxer got 0%.
Heritage Action: when nothing less than pure evil will do!
- JMF sent me to this amazing creation from Banksy. I like the symbolism of something beautiful growing out of the 9/11 attacks. Of course, this is America and so we did exactly the opposite. You mean terrorists killed a bunch of innocent American civilians? Well we should kill a bunch of innocent foreign civilians! It’s so terrible. But the image is beautiful:
- If you’re like me, you’ve learned to stop worrying and love our corporate overlords. But if you aren’t quite there, then you should really enjoy this story. Last week, Will alerted me to an article on Huffington Post, Walmart Worker Says He Was Fired After Helping Woman Fend Off Attacker. According to the article, Kristopher Oswald, a 30-year-old worker at a Michigan Walmart store was fired for helping a customer who was being attacked. “Oswald says he was on break about 2:30 am Sunday when he saw a man grabbing a woman. He says he asked her if she needed help and the man started attacking him.” But apparently, this broke company rules and so he was gone.
I’ll admit it: I was skeptical. I figured there might be more to the story than the guy was letting on. So I let the story sit. But today I saw a new story from CBS News, Wal-Mart says Kristopher Oswald Can Have Job Back, After Firing Him for Trying to Help Assault Victim:Brooke Buchanan, a spokesperson for Wal-Mart, told CBS News’ Crimesider that after reviewing all the facts of the case, the company has determined Oswald had good intentions when he wound up fighting with the woman’s alleged attacker at around 2:30 am Sunday outside the Hartland Township store.
I’m sure that’s true; it certainly can’t have anything to do with all the bad publicity. Thus far, Walmart hasn’t been able to find Oswald. But they’ve left messages on his machine.
What I find interesting here is how quickly, and apparently without thought, Walmart fired this young man. This is indicative of a economy with a high unemployment rate. This is the other reason why the power elites in this country want the Federal Reserve to concentrate on inflation and let unemployment get high. When unemployment is high, businesses have their pick of employees and don’t even think twice about firing good employees. It is despicable. Sadly, it is also common.
- Jane Mayer wrote a very important article over at The New Yorker, Top CIA Lawyer Sides With Senate Torture Report. It involves the confirmation of Stephen W Preston to become the top lawyer at the Pentagon. His appointment has held up by hero Senator Mark Udall. Apparently, he only allowed confirmation after Preston admitted that he agreed with the classified 6,000 page report. Mayer explains:
At its core is a bitter disagreement over an apparently devastating, and still secret, report by the Senate Intelligence Committee documenting in detail how the CIA’s brutalization of terror suspects during the Bush years was unnecessary, ineffective, and deceptively sold to Congress, the White House, the Justice Department, and the public. The report threatens to definitively refute former CIA personnel who have defended the program’s integrity. But so far, to the consternation of several members of the Intelligence Committee, the Obama Administration, like Bush’s before it, is keeping the damning details from public view.
It seems that the CIA has been doing everything it can to suppress the report and claim that it isn’t true. But the CIA’s work has been well and long documented. Early on in the War on Terror, the CIA took over from the FBI, who actually knew how to conduct interrogations. It is a travesty that Obama continues to hide our wrong doing from the American people. It’s stuff like this that makes me question all my fairly positive views about him. If he can be this corrupt and, frankly, evil about drones and torture, maybe he’s the same way about healthcare and stimulus. Maybe he is playing 11-dimensional chess. It’s just he isn’t playing it with the Republicans; he’s playing it with us.
- Regular readers of this site know about the greatest work of satire in the 21st century, Billy Bob Neck. And if you’ve been paying attention, you know that he is the creation of the comedian Paul Day. Well, Day does a whole lot more than just BBN. An example is the following bit of “Gun and God” humor from his Facebook page:
- Here is a late addition. Last night’s The Daily Show had a great opening segment on all the nonsense about the business media’s outrage about JP Morgan’s lawsuit. And then Aasif Mandvi did a great segment of voter ID. And then Jon Stewart interviewed Charles Krauthammer and it all fell apart. As usual, Stewart allows conservatives to come on and spout nonsense. Kruthammer said that life expectancies in America are now 80 years. That’s not true, but even the increases we have actually seen are among the more wealthy. Stewart just let it pass. Kruthammer said that Europe was going bankrupt because of welfare. That’s a totally false conservative canard. Stewart said nothing. Kruthammer said the Tea Party came about as a reaction to Obama’s excesses. That’s remarkable since it started just a month after he entered office. Stewart said nothing. In fact, the only thing Stewart did say was that Kruthammer’s conservatism seemed so reasonable but that it didn’t sound like that of other Republicans. Kruthammer is not reasonable. It’s the same thing that I always talk about: the difference between Kruthammer and Ted Cruz is tactics. Kruthammer said he was against shutting down the government, but only because it was bad tactics, not because he was against the reasons. Kruthammer compares the loons in the Republican Party to Alan Grayson. Stewart just lets him. Unbelievable. Stewart just doesn’t understand that soft spoken conservatives are the same as the ranters. Kruthammer said a lot more that was wrong. He said all kinds of things that were total distortions about Obamacare. I just couldn’t keep up with it. Once again folks: Speaking softly does not make you reasonable!
If you are on Facebook, you should definitely check him out; he puts out a lot of good stuff.
See you all this evening.