4/26/10 The Wayfarer


The wayfarer,
Perceiving the pathway to truth,
Was struck with astonishment.
It was thickly grown with weeds.
“Ha,” he said,
“I see that none has passed here
In a long time.”
Later he saw that each weed
Was a singular knife.
“Well,” he mumbled at last,
“Doubtless there are other roads.”

Stephen Crane, The Wayfarer

____________________________________________

Monday’s Top 5 Links:

Financial overhaul falls short in procedural vote.

Too Big To Fail. Ignore the political posturing. Congress will pass the Wall Street reform bill.

Goldman made $3.7 bln shorting mortgage securities: Levin. Montag, former Goldman exec, called one CDO “shi**y” in email.

Sabres get Vanek back for game 6.

Spitzer film recalls glory days, bares enemies.

___________________________________________

Viddies of the day.

First up, The World Series Champion New York Yankees visited the White House today.  Here’s a viddy, courtesy of whitehouse.gov of the speech the President gave.   Fun stuff!  It kind of surprised me that Joe Girardi actually got a little tongue tied up there, but then again, this is the White House.

Next up, Eliot Spitzer, Andrew Ross Sorkin, among other on a panel talking about Goldman Sachs on CNN’s Fareed Zakaria’s GPS yesterday. Spitzer shows that he is the brains of the operation here.  This man is going to be in major political office again at some point, and I’ll be rooting for him to succeed when he finally does go for it.  I like Eliot, but Martin Wolf makes one point many people are missing. It’s not just a problem with all the illegal stuff that went on, the major problem was the perfectly legal stuff that went on.  THAT stuff took TRILLIONS out of the economy and it will take YEARS before we can fully fix the situation. Good viddy.  Gonna have to watch Mr. Zakaria’s show more often

_________________________________________________

On a personal note,  I would like to talk a bit about a conversation I had today at work.  I was talking to a guy, a security guard, about stuff, this and that, nothing major, books that are on the shelves that we happen to be working around.  The conversation turned to politics.  Normally I am not the shrinking violet (i think that’s the proper idiom) but in this conversation I just listened.  It was enlightening.  Enlightening insofar as how much people will believe what they want to believe.

I happen to know a fair bit about a few things.  I know that the AMT, started as the minimum tax was altered several times, most notably in 1986 by Ronald Reagan.  This person made it seem as though the real problem was in fact created when the AMT was first created to get very wealthy people who used loopholes to get around paying the bulk of their taxes.  I know that federal income tax is legal, it’s in the constitution, and was further legitimized by the passing of the XVI amendment.  The person I spoke to says that’s all crap. Income tax is illegal.  When I pointed out it was in the constitution he put down the idea as preposterous.

I happen to know that The President was born on the Island of Hawaii, and that he spent a number of years in Indonesia.  I have to tell you that the person I spoke to, this security guard, didn’t know any of this.  He wanted to see the birth certificate, which he claimed did not exist, which we have all seen online, which will be my pic of the day as a matter of fact.  He doesn’t know how many years he was out of the country (read the link here to read it yourself)

Willful ignorance is an ugly thing, and this man had much more of that where this came from.  I may get to more of it, if I remember to, the next time I write here, which will be, in all likelihood, Thursday.  I have a lot of work for the next two days.

______________________________________________________

Quote and Pic of the day:  What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them — that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end.

Barack Obama

Have a g’night America!

Minor edit 6:13 am 4/27/10

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