Monthly Archives: January 2009

Bye, George

 

I don’t really like writing or talking about how awful George Bush is, because it is a line of discussion a lot of very self-righteous enjoy engaging in and I hate self-righteous people. Nonetheless, I am not going to let that crummy bastard slink off to Texas without getting in a last word for posterity’s sake, just a quick little rant to remind myself of how awful he was 30 years from now…

It is and has been very fashionable for a while now for people to call George Bush the worst president ever.  I have heard and read this claim made in lots of places, but I find it a difficult one to swallow.  I doubt whether many of the people making it had to suffer through the Harding years or were sitting around the kitchen table in 1861 cursing James Buchanan’s domestic policy.  So I won’t call George Bush the worst president ever, I’ll just call him a disgraceful dumb fuckup who did more damage to human civilization than three Mount Vesuviuses. It was a terrible thing to have to enter adulthood under his reign.  I have spent a full 30 percent of my life living under this man’s rule and I know I am worse for it on a personal level in ways that I cannot quite explain or understand. He has left a horrible scar on my psyche.

I doubt George will ever recognize his own shittiness, or, if he does, care much about it.  Idiots rarely make time for self-reflection.  I really like to think in my own head, that one day, while he is clearing brush on his ranch under a hot Texas sun, he pauses, looks out over the prairie and have the realization of his own disgracefully terrible performance whack him on the cerebellum.  Maybe he will catch a glimpse of this in his own head, but I doubt that will ever happen.  He is a mean, petty, inept criminal, and if there were any justice in the world, his last trip out of the White House would be in the bed of a garbage truck.

We got what we deserved with W, and so did the Republican Party who enabled his Jesus-fueled policy for all those years and rode his coattails to victory in 2004.  The pricetag for that was high for the GOP, and the check came due on a Tuesday last November, when the electorate decided it was downright giddy over a black man with a Muslim name compared to anybody with a R next to their name tag.  

My grievance list is long: A shattered economy, a never-ending meat grinder war in the Middle East against a bunch of sandaled Muslims,  a 10-trillion dollar deficit, a systematic dismantling of consumer and environmental protections, the fear of having a government that is not only listening to and watching you but might well yank you off the street and ship you to Jordan to have your bones beaten into jelly with copper piping in the name of fighting terror.  He named some horse groomer as FEMA director and then said he was doing a “heckuva job” as a major American city drowned and the survivors ate each other.  He denied global warming, made it easier to dump poison into the skies and water, raze national forests, and dump coal sludge into rivers.  

It would be unfair to blame the man for the ruination of freemarket capitalism that is underway, but it is a much more shameful reality that George’s economic policy was purely formed for the benefit of a permanent aristocracy, the people sitting on the tippy top of one of the largest disparities of wealth in the history of mankind.  He bent the machinery of government to provide the most help to those who need it the least.  This was apparently not a source of any embarrassment for him, nor for his backers.  If he ever once mentioned the poor or the homeless, or did anything at all to benefit them, it was purely by accident.  

In the end, everything he touched turned to poison.  He couldn’t even come to his own party’s convention in his last year, no one wanted to see his hideous visage.  He plunged from a 90% approval rating to the point where not even a GOP candidate running for city clerk in Branson, Missouri wanted to be seen with him.  

It is hard to squander that much goodwill.  Even if he ran around the front steps of the White House naked with but a dashiki on burning an American flag, his approval rating would be higher than it is now.  He made America hated, more hated than it has ever been  in its history.  Everyone who voted for him in 2004 ought to have to walk around with a big red “W” emblazoned on their breast for ten years.

He is a national failure, a stain on our collective soul that will never be erased.  We had a fine chance to send him back to clearing brush in Texas in 2004, and if only we had realized that this was a task he was much more suited to in both temperment and intelligence, a lot of the hideousness of the last four years could’ve been averted.  We could’ve closed the book on him and we didn’t.  It would be a great thing had we learned our lesson then: that perhaps electing the man who claims to be closest to Jesus solely for that reason alone may not be the best public policy, and that perhaps it is not shrewd to elect a low-rent pampered dunce for the highest office in the land.  Let alone twice.

The consequences for massive failures in jobs like Investment Bank CEO and American President are not so harsh as they are in the rest of the world.  George will retreat down to Crawford with Laura, his dogs, and a permanent Secret Service detail.  He will sit on his $6,700 leather sofa in the afternoons and watch football and drink near beer and think about his time in office, when he was the Most Powerful Man in the World, when he was whisked around the world in a 500 million dollar jet and up-armored V-12 limousines capable of stopping a .50 caliber shell at close range.  His per-hour speaking rate will be about 1/8th of Bill Clinton’s and he will grow old, waiting for the screws of history to turn him in a favorable light.  

Again, I think he is too stupid to really truly grasp what a scar he has left on the arc of human history… but maybe that doesn’t matter.  He is gone now and no one is jumping to answer his phone calls.  It took me eight years, but in the final 20 minutes of the Bush presidency I got to boo him.  I booed and booed and booed.  Friends said I was nuts, that there was no way he could here me, but so what?  They missed the point.  I wanted to throw my shoe at his helicopter as it pulled away over my head, but it was too cold out and I shook my fist and watched it fly down the mall towards the airport instead.

-P McGraw

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Audio from Newark Air Traffic Control

newyork_english_5_d_734507gWe’re all waiting for video footage of the ditch into the Hudson yesterday, but apparently no footage has yet emerged. In the mean time SMC has gotten their hands on audio from the controllers at Newark Airport. Listen to the controller direct traffic around an incident from Laguardia. Other pilots are asked if they can see anything in the Hudson, and repeatedly are told it’s an A320. About 5 minutes into the audio, the controller is asking pilots to confirm a report that it went into the river. They are told to look for people or wreckage about where the Emprie State Building is in but in the river, and then told to look near the Intrepid. Link to the audio here:

 

HERE’s the audio. Below are the references to the US Air flight:

0:40 – Update on heading of the aircraft

1:25 – Lost radar contact with the aircraft

2:04 – False alarm, thought they spotted it

3:12 – Garbled in background chatter about looking in the Hudson

4:04 – Nothing in the river “Negative Negative”

5:00 – “No solid reports” “One sighting in the river”

6:15 – Look for activity in the water people, an airplane

6:20 – It’s in the river

6:34 – “What carrier was that?”

6:46 – “Near the Intrepid”

6:54 – “I dont see it”

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SMC Goes to Washington!

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Unless you have been in a coma for the past month you know that this Tuesday marks the beginning of a new American Presidency. We here at SMC are committed to bringing the events of inauguration weekend to our readers. To that end we have submitted requisite materials to ensure we are fully credentialed for the weekend. From the whistle stop train tour, to the swearing in and parade, to the gala’s and balls Tuesday night, SMC will be there.

Didn’t get an invite to the South Carolina Society Ball? Well neither did we, but we’ll do our best to get in there and mix with some daughters of the confederacy and get their take on Mr. Obama’s ascent to the presidency. Count on SMC to deliver the all the hard hitting stories, absurdity and general misconduct that one would expect when 3,000,000+ people descend on our nations capital next week.

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A. Plebeian Solution to Detroit and Big Oil

I am Adlai Plebeian and I support two things: big oil money paying Detroit’s bailout and airlines weighing passengers. Both chafe me in ways only ostrich racers and camel jockeys appreciate. Why should I pay for years of horrible mismanagement and inferior product offerings? Am I more responsible to bail them out than oil companies who propped them up in the first place? And where do Airlines get off charging me an extra $30 to check a bag at the same time allowing some person twice my weight the same cabin baggage allowance at the same fare? End the madness!

ExxonMobil earned $40B in 2007 and continues to break quarterly profit records for U.S. companies ($14.83B for last quarter). Government loans of $17B to GM and Chrysler came from you and me, while oil companies continue enjoying their record profits and continue to do business as usual. What good is a $17B loan to GM going to do decrease energy usage and oil dependence when oil companies continue earning profits. Cheap gasoline and unheard of oil profits dragged Detriot into this mess. It’s only fair these profits, enjoyed on the wings of Detroit’s crash and burn, finance cleaning up the wreckage. Oil company profits were spent to maintain the supremacy of inefficient gasoline powered automobiles, now they should pay to save the industry they have helped bring close to destruction. Nobody whined when big tobacco had to fund efforts to prevent tobacco addiction; few will whine when big-oil funds programs to end oil addiction.

Throw a federal fuel tax on top and there is a plan that might just save U.S. auto makers. Fluctuations in the price of commodity so necessary to general commerce are absurd. A federal-tax to stablize the price of gas  near $3.00/gallon makes automakers rethink some basic elements of their offerings, and makes oil companies look to alternate revenue sources than hawking cheap gasoline to people with big cars. And if people want to drive, revenue from the tax supports road maintenance, infrastructure upgrades to support re-fueling stations to deliver electricty, hydrogen or whatever powers the cars of tomorrow. 

They’re quite sensible really, big oil paying for Detroit’s bailout and a gas tax, which is exactly why you’ll never see them in action.

A. Plebeian

 

…And while were at it, let airlines weigh passengers. Quite frankly I am furious that I have to pay to check a bag on the airline. A 250 pound individual to bring 2 carry-on bags and 100 pounds of superfluous body mass into a cabin. This is not fair. Why am I paying for the fuel costs to lug around your unhealthy lifestyle? An airline ticket should be good for 250 lbs. of carriage. Passengers and their bags will stand on a platform to weigh everything. If it’s more than 250 pounds, pay up. Airlines should charge more to passengers who cost more to transport. At FedEx/UPS/USPS when it weighs more you pay more to ship it—is this somehow different?

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The Dwight D Eisenhower Lucky Strike Advertisement

In honor of Obama being named the new Marlboro Man, we here at Sweet Merciful Crap are celebrating all past Presidential cigarette endorsers. This one is kind of fudging it, as Ike was still Supreme Allied Commander (ETO) when he took on this gig, nonetheless, we present you the Eisenhower Lucky Strike Ad:

 

Dwight Eisenhower Cigarette Ad

Dwight Eisenhower Cigarette Ad

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