You keep using that word

The following was shared on Facebook by a left-leaning friend.

CardcarryingsocialsecurityistThis argument is invalid. I have (do not carry) a Social Security card only because the government forces me to have a Social Security account. Kinda hard to get a (legal) job, or generally exist, without one.  As Obamacare advocates would point out, I didn’t build that, and it’s the law.

Because historically, Socialists always have to force their programs down the throats of free men.

The original post was by an exceedingly giddy young (I assume) woman, who accompanied it with the observation, “Just found this today:-) gonna love sharing it with anyone who calls Bernie a Socialist like is a disease😋😎”

Well, Bernie is a socialist.  Bernie is about the free stuff.  The problem is that this giddy young (I assume) woman doesn’t understand that, historically, in order to provide the free stuff, socialists take over the means of production and dictate who gets what, who lives where, who gets to attend college and become more than just a drone, and who labors as the drones to produce the free stuff for the elites.  That would probably surprise this giddy young (I assume) woman, who on her Facebook profile indicates that she is the “owner” of an Etsy shop that sells jewelry.  Silly woman.  Under a Sanders administration, nobody will own anything — not even their body.

Well, OK, maybe that’s extreme.  But it would not be outside the realm of socialist thought.

More to the point, she has not a clue about why and how Social Security came into existence, nor what it and the deluge of social programs that followed it have done to the very fabric of our nation.  Before FDR and the New Deal, these social concerns were taken care of locally, by families, extended families, religious institutions, and in some cases, the local government (think “county poor farm”).  In some of these instances, the solution wasn’t particularly nice (think “county poor farm”).  But where there was life, there was hope, and depending on the community you lived in, it wouldn’t be long till you were back on your feet, even if you were working a job at manual labor for a dollar a day — because the community didn’t have any use for layabouts and shirkers.

Because the 1929 Great Depression had so much more impact on the nation than previous downturns — or at least was perceived to have more impact, probably due to a combination of better news reporting and fumbling attempts (or non-attempts) by the government of the day to do anything to contain it — FDR was able to run and win in ’32 on an essentially socialistic platform which was parlayed into the New Deal.  Of course, FDR had no actual answers either, and the Great Depression got even worse before it got better, mostly due to his administration’s incompetent meddling with the levers of government.  (The man would literally wake up in the morning and set the day’s price for gold on a whim.  Don’t believe me, read some history.  Here’s a good place to start.)  As a result, the economy, which actually appeared to be recovering by the time the ’32 election rolled around (even though 1932 was the “worst” year of the Great Depression in terms of joblessness), went back into the dumper and hit a nadir in 1937 which was only alleviated by FDR backing off some of the more socialistic New Deal “reforms” he’d put into place.  And of course, most honest historians will acknowledge that the Great Depression didn’t end until the economy transformed from consumer-driven to war-driven with the onset of the Second World War.

But look what it took to implement FDR-style statism/socialism.

1) A historically-epic economic downturn in 1929.  But we’d had bank panics and downturns many times before in our history.  Here’s a list as long as your arm.  Somehow we always seemed to get out of them without handing over our lives, fortunes and sacred honor to the gummint.

2) An unwillingness to accept that, by the end of 1932, the country was in fact working its way out of the downturn.

3) The election of a rich bastard asshole one-percenter Democrat (but I may be repeating myself) from the Northeast.

4) A nascent national news media (via radio) that aided and abetted socialistic reforms by giving the President of the United States a true nationwide bully pulpit.

5) The packing and corruption of the Supreme Court with the tacit collusion of the Democrat-majority Senate.

6) A reading of the Constitution’s “general welfare” clause that was out of keeping with historical interpretation of the document.

7) A flatly unConstitutional requirement that workers in most industries must sign up for the new Social Security program.  (Railroad workers, among others, had sufficient power to avoid that until the 1960’s, when my grandfather, among others, got screwed when his railroad pension was converted over to Social Security.  He lived in penury the rest of his life as a result.)

And finally, 8) A populace that was gulled into a false sense of security by its federal servants, who became their masters without anyone really thinking about it.

To this day, with the later additions of LBJ’s Great Society and the general disaster known as the Obama Administration, little has been done to stem the tide of statism masquerading as socialism.  That old fascist Woodrow Wilson, creator of the federal income tax and nationalizer of railroads, would be pleased to see government firmly in charge of the people, with its grasp on their throats tightening more and more every year.

Which leads us back to the original point of this post.  The giddy young (I assume) woman who thinks it’s funny that we’re all card-carrying socialists because we’re forced to have SSI accounts proves that she has no idea of what came before.  Admittedly, I do only because I have studied history (I’se gots a degree innit, right?) and because my parents lived through the Great Depression and the War that ended it.  But I know more about why we have those cards than she does, or probably most average Americans do.  If you look through the list I provided above, you’ll see clear parallels between the Great Depression of the 1930’s and the Great Recession we’re currently still in the midst of.

Social Security is one of the best examples of a failed socialist program I can think of.  It is funded not by a trust fund, as the people were led to believe when it was created, but by current revenues even over and above what the FICA tax takes in.  The “trust fund” was shown to be nothing but a wad of IOU’s from the Treasury some years back.  All of us working stiffs are paying into FICA not for our own retirement, but for that of our parents’.  (Who, pray tell, will pay for ours?  I’m not sanguine about the prospects.)  The associated programs Medicare and Medicaid are rife with fraud, and the less said about the abuse and fraud associated with Social Security disability programs, the better for my blood pressure.

We have walked, eyes wide shut, into a fiscal disaster that has been the better part of a century in the making, all due to politicians trying to make us into socialists.  And now, the Democrat front-runner wants to impose even more socialism on us, if he’s elected.  (So does the Republican front-runner, but he’s being a bit more sly about it.)  Both parties are culpable and guilty of aiding and abetting this long, slow slide into state control of our lives.  People in Congress like Mitch McConnell and John Boehner (who thankfully is gone, only because — unlike McConnell and John McCain and others of their ilk — he recognized his time was at an end) should have been shown the door years ago, because they do not represent the people — they represent themselves, and the special interests that funded their rise.

And legislators seem honestly hurt by the fact that Congress polls at a rate lower than ever before.

So yeah, Ms. Denny Love, sure, yuk it up that we’re all Socialists now.  Laugh while you can.  In a few years, your sense of humor may be all you have.  But you’ll have to live with the fruits of your folly a lot longer than I will. Thank goodness for small favors.

Goddamn “conservatives”

You fuckers are as bad as the girlfriend I had for five minutes in college.  Silly little shit would flit from man to man like a moth to a flame.  She’d take on a chameleon-like interest in everything he did, including his major AND his religion.

Cruz is the only legitimate heir to Reagan in this race.*

Yet you fuckers go whoring after Trump.  Then Carson.  Then Rubio.  Then Christie, for fuck’s sake — why?  Other than beating up on teachers, he’s as liberal as Trump.  Then back to Rubio.  But always chasing after the bad boy — who ISN’T Cruz and ISN’T a Reagan Republican.

I swear to God, if Cruz isn’t the nominee, I’m voting Libertarian.  I’m done with the fucking GOPe and all the people who listen to its gospel.

____________

* Is he “the next Reagan”?  No.  Nobody will ever be the next Reagan.  Reagan was Reagan.  The best anyone trying to emulate him can do is to follow in his footsteps and at least ACT like a conservative.  Cruz is at least Reaganesque.  The rest of them?  Bah.

Paid in full, with interest

The United Nations is the latest forum of stupid people demanding that the United States pay reparations for slavery.

Reparations were paid, in blood and treasure, with interest, between 1861 and 1865.

US out of UN.

UN out of US.

The hypocrisy is strong

Dear Better Roads Ahead PAC,

Yes, in fact, there is a better use for a few pennies:  Back in my pocket where they belong.

What you don’t seem to understand (or perhaps you understand it quite well), all the money you’re paying unionized printers to send out 8-1/2×11 cardstock political ads would take the place of a lot of those pennies you want from me.  Why don’t you give that money directly to the state of Indiana instead of asking me to support raising the gasoline tax?

In fact, the Better Roads Ahead PAC is apparently funded, in part, by the very unions whose members would benefit from the state spending more wallet-hoovered money on road repairs.  In Illinois, where last year the PAC was making similar noise, it was supported by, for instance, “Local 150 of the International Union of Operating Engineers, one member of the coalition behind the BetterRoadsAhead.org PAC”.  But you can’t find out who the “coalition” is by going to the PAC’s website.

People in Indiana are already taxed to the hilt for a gallon of gasoline.  According to Wikipedia, the state tax on a gallon of gasoline in Indiana is 29.89 cents.  Add 18.4 cents federal tax to that and now you’re up to 48.29 cents per gallon just in taxes.  If my average fillup is 8 gallons, that means every time I fill the tank, the state and Uncle Sam get $3.86.

The state doesn’t need a few pennies more. The state already gets plenty.  Maybe the unions who back your PAC ought to take a wage cut, instead.

I just don’t get stolen valor.

Tamara posted on FB last night about somedude in her hotel bar who was pretty obviously talking out his ass about his alleged military experience.

Oh, God, this douche at the hotel bar won’t shut his face about all the Viet Cong he killed in the battle of Bahrain.

He doesn’t like Glocks. You should buy a Sigma, he says.

It’s so easy to tell the real thing; they’re guys like my Dad, who wouldn’t talk about it. The only real inkling I ever got about his service was when he told me it was the best worst time of his life; sometimes wished he could go back, but was glad he couldn’t.
 
Oh, and he did tell me how he got his Bronze Star: “I was a stupid kid who thought he’d live forever. We were under fire, and somebody had to repair that phone line to the forward observation post, it wasn’t fixing itself.” And he’d talk about incidentals, funny things he remembered, like the cow they shot that one time “by accident”, or how he’d trade his ration cigarettes for his buddies’ ration pipe tobacco, or how, while advancing through the French countryside, he ran across the busted-up K98 Mauser that’s sitting behind me in my office right now — and why it was practically the only souvenir he managed to bring home.* But he never talked about combat.
 
I hope he’s enjoying Valhalla.
_________________
* Because he mailed it home.  The rest of his souvenirs, including a Luger and a pair of Zeiss binoculars, and French perfume for my grandmother, were all stolen from his tent by some fucking asshole while he and his platoon were on R&R in the Austrian Alps.

Sarah Palin: Deleted from my dance card

I can no longer support Sarah Palin.

If she’d endorsed Cruz, she would have accomplished much — backing a real conservative and sticking it in the eye of the GOP elites who hate her as much as they hate Cruz.

The Trump endorsement is beyond the pale.  Bye bye, Sarah!

Whew

That was close.  Got over to Mom’s today and sat down at her computer to do something for my stepfather, and the Get Windows 10 applet popped up and offered to let me schedule my upgrade.

I stepped directly over to The Ultimate Outsider, grabbed a copy of GWX Control Panel, and put paid to that silly idea.  Then I went over to the FCC to renew my stepfather’s ham ticket for him :)

LaPierre wants a fair debate with Obama, eh?

Ooh! A REAL debate? Like, with a neutral moderator, a single proposition to be argued, and the audience voting on who won afterwards?

You know these things they call “debates” these days aren’t actually debates.  Point of fact, there probably hasn’t been an honest-to-goodness debate in American political life since the Lincoln-Douglas debates.

Let’s try this on for size:

Resolved: That the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States unambiguously protects the personal and natural right of a citizen to bear arms in defense of oneself, one’s relatives and acquaintances, and one’s home, business, and chattels, against any attempted depredation of same by any private person or government agency, and furthermore expressly denies to the Federal Government the ability to infringe upon that right in any way, including, but not limited to, acts of Congress, regulations of the Federal bureaucracy, or executive order of the President. Mr. Obama will argue against, Mr. LaPierre will argue in favor. Mr. Obama, as the challenged party, you will present your arguments first. You have twenty minutes. Mr. LaPierre will have 20 minutes to rebut, following which each party will then have five minutes for closing arguments, after which the audience will vote by show of hands.

Sadly, I’m guessing neither one of them was on the debate team in school.

Primarily musing…

Why can’t we get rid of caucuses and primaries and go back to state conventions and smoke-filled rooms? Believe it or not, we actually had a better class of politicians in those days, even if most of them were crooked as a dog’s hind leg…and you didn’t have to worry about the other party vote-bombing your primary.

Plus, pre-Amendment XVII, the politicians — at least, the Senators — knew who had their balls in a lockbox.  “You want to be a senator, Fred?  OK, well, be aware that either you’ll do what you’re told by the governor, the legislature, and the state party, or you’ll serve one term and be back on your farm plowing the north 40 so fast, your head will spin.”

And this crap of presidential candidates running all over the place and flapping their jaws regarding the hot news of the moment — can’t you all be like McKinley and go sit on your damn porch while the party runs your campaign?

So sick of all of them.  Would that they had a single neck, I’d cut it through.  Except maybe Cruz.  That boy wants to mix it up.  I say we ought to let him.

Needed…

A national registry where people could indicate preferences … for florists.

I would love to have the ability to log into a site and tell it that we don’t want any live plants, or cut glass vases, or any of the other silly sh*t that people send instead of a card or a simple phone call.

We have cats.  My wife has a black thumb, and I don’t care about plants all that much.  To me the perfect house has a well-manicured lawn, a few mature trees, and maybe an evergreen or two for accent — and if there are any plants INSIDE the house, they’re fake.  Like the plastic tree we have in the family room, or the ceramic black roses my wife got from someone that are on top of the kitsch cabinet.  (OK, fine; we have a philodendron that my wife brought to the marriage that hangs in the front window, and which by all rights ought to have died years ago, but I always manage to see it and remember to water it before it shrivels completely up.  My wife won’t have anything to do with it and wants to throw it away.)

So — of course, with my wife recently graduating from her master’s program, we got cut flowers from her parents, and someone else brought us a cute little potted flowering plant (no idea what it is) that I just got done watering.  In any other house, you could put these things on side tables or the front hall table or whatever.

In this house, the cats would have them on the floor in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…

So we can’t actually enjoy plants and flowers here.  They always have to be displayed on top of some tall piece of furniture so that the cats can’t get to them.  Which means we forget about them and they die horrible deaths from lack of water.

A national floral registry that florists could consult when someone tries to send you flowers would be a fab idea.  Why can’t some enterprising venture capitalist get on that?

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