Saturday, April 24, 2004
Predictably, the News-Press endorsed last week's workers comp nonsolution .


This irks on two levels: first of all, it's clear that they didn't do a lick of research on what actually got passed (keep in mind, the insurance companies will likely pass on nothing of the savings to businesses), but maybe the greater problem is the News-Press' continued, ongoing pattern of utter disrespect for the process of democracy. They complain about the legislature's hearings, but what's the option? Having the first batch of insurance company lobbyists that walk into the Governor's office write the legislation? Our Rep was one of only three that had the guts to point out that emperor Schwarzenegger has no clothes. Santa Barbara should be celebrating Ms. Jackson's integrity, not writing her off in poorly researched, shoot from the hip editorials.

Monday, April 19, 2004
Buried in the Arts section for some reason, the NY Times has a story on last week's Wal-Mart Confab that was put on by the UCSB Sociology Department... Stories like this ought to be front and center in the business section. I like the angle of attack that Mr. Lichtenstein has chosen here: the comparison to Henry Ford's ethic of paying his employees enough to buy the product they were making is the most depressing part of WalMartification.

Friday, April 16, 2004
Schwarzenegger Somehow Manages to Sell Out Both Workers and Businesses Today's big news is that a workers comp bill has been voted in. It appears to be just shy of a complete disaster for everyone in the state except the insurance companies. The LA Times sums it up like this: The article mentions that the "good" news is that this measure has a few more protections for workers than the ballot measure the Governor was threatening, which gutted them completely.

There is some actual good news though: Santa Barbara state Assemblymember Hannah-Beth Jackson was one of only three votes to stand up and vote against this blatant and pathetic sellout. Here's the full text of the statement her office released today... So when Governor Schwarzenegger successfully browbeats the legislature, this is what we get: a cheap, empty gesture of a bill. The public doesn't hear the truth, just the soundbites emanating from his chiseled jawline regarding the exact shade of lipstick this particular pig is wearing.

Thursday, April 15, 2004
President Bush Needs Your Help! At the press conference the other night, President Bush couldn't remember what his biggest mistake might've been. You can help him figure it out here.

Wednesday, April 14, 2004
A caller to the O'Franken Factor just mentioned the spat that the President had with a reporter the other day - the reporter called the President "sir" and he spat back "who you talking to?", which prompted to reporter to correct himself, starting the question again with "Mr. President." I know this is a small thing compared to (say) what's happening in Iraq right now, but I think it is indicative of something larger. If you want to hear the exchange, I found an mp3 of it that you can download from this directory.

There's a lot of commentary floating around about Bush's press conference last night. I watched a big chunk of it, and felt what I usually feel when listening to wingnuts tell stories: it might be internally consistent, but it only makes sense if you ignore half of reality. I did think the press was at least slightly less comatose than they've been, at least.

In the meantime, the Gadflyer (a new source to me) has gone and calculated the cost per job of Bush's tax cuts. I won't ruin the suprise other than to say that its quite a bit more than I've made in the ten years I've been in the workforce. (and his numbers are quite generous to the President) Where do I sign up for one of those?

Monday, April 12, 2004
Something agonizing to ponder as April 15th approaches... His book Perfectly Legal is near the top of my want to read list, although I'm a little scared of how insane it's likely to make me. Having been a vicitim of the Alternative Minimum Tax a few years ago (I was hit with a huge tax on some technology company incentive stock options - on money I literally never earned), I have a sick fasication with the tax code. Seeing a thorough and progressive revision of the tax code is one of my personal top priorities.

Friday, April 09, 2004
More on Dubya's big spring break adventure: "This is Bush's 33rd visit to his ranch since becoming president. He has spent all or part of 233 days on his Texas ranch since taking office, according to a tally by CBS News. Adding his 78 visits to Camp David and his five visits to Kennebunkport, Maine, Bush has spent all or part of 500 days in office at one of his three retreats, or more than 40 percent of his presidency. "

Fairness & Accuracy in reporting has a nice summary of the pundits that are stupidly asking Kerry to commit political suicide by "moving to the right". All of these jokers need to go read George Lakoff's Moral Politics (or even just read a bunch of his articles & see him live once, which is all I've done). In one sentence: you don't win an election by "moving" anywhere, you win by staking out the right turf and defending it. Taking their advice and picking McCain for VP would be a complete and utter disaster.

It's everywhere, but the LA Times's coverage of Condi Rice's testimony before the 9/11 commission yesterday is as good as anyone's... As far as I'm concerned, that's completely unacceptable. The essential quality of leadership in a big bureaucracy is not passing the buck; it's figuring out what's wrong and then stubbornly staying on it until the necessary changes happen. Saying there are structural problems and implying there's nothing you could've done about them just doesn't cut it for me. Even leaving out Clarke's testimony, just on the basis of hers it's perfectly clear that the Bush White House fumbled this one pathetically, too. It seems increasingly clear that these attacks could indeed have been prevented, which is an awful thing to contemplate.

Thursday, April 08, 2004
Rome burns, Nero fiddles: (free WaPo registration required) Bush just so very badly needs to be unemployed, right? Then he'd have plenty of time to relax with his pals and do a little hunting. He should have plenty of time for all this a year from now...

Monday, April 05, 2004
Europe's multi-country High Speed Train network has a slick website now. We need something like this here in California so badly!

Sunday, April 04, 2004
This Wednesday April 7th, there's a SB ch.17 cable community access overview meeting from 7-9pm, at exactly the same time as the DFA meetup. Decisions decisions!

Friday, April 02, 2004
Dude, where's my jobs? ...

Powered by Blogger Weblog Commenting by