Richard Day's picture

    ETHICS

    I AM VOLUNTARILY PREPARING TO DIE ON MARS.

    WHY NOT?  MY KIDS COULD SAY:

    Hell, my dad died on Mars. Hahahah

    I was a conciliation court judge in my mid twenties.

    A mentor of mine sent me down to sign up.

    The gig was once a month and I received 70 bucks for my time.

    Now you have to remember that in those days an 800 square foot home cost $250/month and being an incompetent that was a lot of money.

    Danny Cardwell's picture

    We Might Need (smart) Black Conservatives

    I firmly believe the two party system, as it currently exists, lacks the ability and will to structurally better the lives of everyday people. Much of my critique revolves around the grotesque amount of money in politics and the corporate media's failure to accurately report on economic, political, and social events. The democratic component of our republic has been circumvented, and we (as a nation) need an intellectual awakening (or reawakening) to recover it. Since it would be virtually impossible to remove money from politics or make the corporate media do it's job, I'm led to believe a few moderate changes could lead us down the road to a higher political discourse. One of these ideas is to embrace "authentic" black conservatives. The "authentic" is an appropriation of a thesis offered by Chidike Okeem (a writer and conservative commentator). Chidike calls for authentic black conservatives to push back against the "artificial" black conservatives who parrot talking points given to them by the conservative media noise machine.

    Regime Change and Precedent

    After all the screaming about Bush's botched trumped-up war in Iraq, looks like the left is getting its own takedown in Libya - with the rise of ISIS, inability to form a stable government, oil wealth not covering all the expenses - our over-optimistic fantasies of the future by overthrowing Qaddafi seem horridly misguided 3 years later. Somalia on the Mediterranean is our new dystopian future. After pride comes the fall.

    A Message to You, Rudy

    Rudy Giuliano is the son of an organized crime enforcer for loan sharks and gamblers who spent time in Sing Sing for felony assault and gambling - as the great Casey Stengel said, "you can look it up".

    How Giuliano then gets to lecture Obama on his Hawaiian upbringing is anyone's guess, but yes, Rudy - Obama wasn't raised like you - his idea of "Family" doesn't equal "Mafia".

    Pass it on.

    Michael Maiello's picture

    Leonard Nimoy Open Thread

    I admit, it hits me whenever somebody from the original cast dies and I'll probably feel the same way about Star Trek: The Next Generation and Voyager.

    The whole Star Trek vision and, believe me, some of it has its problems, has always struck me as a bit of necessary hope in a society that can very easily turn cranky.  The whole show, and Nimoy embodied this, has always been about humanity overcoming its want for resources and its inane and unproductive tribalisms.

    Ramona's picture

    CPAC! A Fond Look Back on the Circuses That Were

    It's CPAC time!  I almost missed it!  (My invitation no doubt was lost in the mail.)  Since 2009, shortly after I first started writing this blog, I've been fascinated by the dizzy doings over at CPAC (Conservative Po
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    Michael Wolraich's picture

    Dagblog Hack Alert

    Hi everyone, I recently discovered that dagblog has been hacked. The North Korean government denies responsibility, but supreme leader Kim Jong Un has been known to harbor animosity against dagblog after we suspended his account for ad hominem attacks, hijacking comment threads, crimes against humanity, and other ToS violations. Homeland Security has been notified and promises to take unspecified reprisals against unspecified nations as soon as they figure out their funding situation.

    In all seriousness, the site was hacked. I don't believe that the hackers did anything other than use our server as a spam-generator, but as a precaution, I suggest that you make sure that you're not using your dagblog email and password on other sites that have more sensitive information. If you are, I recommend that you change your passwords on those other sites. There is no need to change your dagblog password. I don't think the hackers are interested is blogging here. But if it makes you feel more comfortable, you can change it here or go to My Account in the top bar.

    I sincerely apologize for any inconvenience. I will add additional security precautions to prevent this from happening in the future.

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    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    National Adjunct Walkout Day (and Why It Matters to You)

    Today, February 25, is National Adjunct Walkout Day. The majority of college teachers in America today are not full-time instructors with salaries, benefits, or job security, but allegedly "part time" adjunct faculty members paid a few thousand dollars per course. Today, across our country, those adjunct faculty members will be walking out of their classes and holding events to raise awareness.

    Can America reach a new equilibrium?

    If our current political deadlock, amplified by the market forces of technology and capitalism are projected without modification into the future, a world of extreme inequality, overwhelming local taxes and religiously contrived restrictions on personal behavior awaits us. The invention of cheap and home made weapons including drones, 3-D printed guns, and cyber blackouts will make an ever angry electorate turn more violent.

    3-D Printer walks into a bar

     

    "Are you the plumber printer?", Maggie, the bar tender, asked.

    "Yeah, where are the restrooms?"

    "Down the hall, on the left side", Maggie said, "We need four new plungers."

    "They told me two plungers. I've gotta go back to the shop and get more resin."

    As the printer plumber waddled back to his truck Maggie and I looked at each other and laughed at the vestigial human ethos in a manufactured worker.

    "I have to remember that these machines are not real", she said, and touched my arm with the intent of reassurance. Reduced to a life of basic existence in this dystopian society on the banks of the Mississippi we humans latched onto any morsel of feeling or behavior that might remind us of the distant society we had enjoyed prior to the Missouri Printed Gun and Sex Bot Compromise.

    Michael Maiello's picture

    How WalMart Fooled The World

    Yesterday, The Daily Beast asked me for my take on WalMart's big "wage hike." WalMart raised its starting wage to $9 an hour across all locations, with the goal of getting all of its 1.4 million employees to $10 an hour next year.  The company handled the PR very well.  From the press I saw, you'd think WalMart had grown a heart, that economic conditions had improved for our lowest wage workers and that the system basically works.

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    Ramona's picture

    Yes, Rudy, It Was a Horrible Thing to Say. Thank You

    According to an article in Politico, former NYC mayor Rudy Giuliani told a group of Republicans gathered to pay some sort of attention to Wisconsin governor Scott Walker that it's his belief that President Obama doesn't love them, him, or even the entire United States of America.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Why Don't Overworked, Underpaid People Get Involved In Politics?

    Adam Seth Levine, a professor of government at Cornell University, took to The Times this morning to promote his book American Insecurity: Why Our Economic Fears Lead to Political Inaction.  We on the left have been wondering forever why people "vote against their economic interests" or why progressive political messages fail to inspire or convince so many people.

    Levine observes, based on experiment:

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    I am morally humiliated. How 'bout you?

    Chris Matthews says that the American People are morally humiliated when, in Syria, ISIS burns an allied pilot alive, or in Libya a gang not actually part of the Islamic State (but soi-disant nonetheless), beheads 45 Egyptians for being Christian.

    And that's before today's episode in Iraq, where some captured members of the Iraqi government forces were burned alive.

    There is not a moment's introspection into the monstrous hubris this entails.  

    Wattree's picture

    It's Time To Enact A Workers' Bill Of Rights - And Boot out Any Politician Who Refuses To Go Along

    The American people have been sold a bill of goods. We've allowed the one-percenters to convince us that completely unrestrained capitalism (or greed) is "the American way." Says who, the one-percenters? The "American way" should be what's good for America, not just a handful of industrialists, political cronies, and Wall Street manipulators.
    .
    Think about the average American's response to the word "socialism." Corporatists have conditioned us to revile even the mention of  of the word. Most Americans react to it like Count Dracula reacts to a cross. We've been so thoroughly conditioned that it's used as a pejorative to slur President Obama.  It conjures up images of dictators, Red China, the former Soviet Union, the government taking over our lives, and the loss of freedom, but it doesn't actually mean that at all. What it actually means is giving the average citizen a fair shake and not stacking the deck against them by promoting unfettered greed.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Fifty Shades of Mr. D.: The Unwritten Rules of Romance Fiction

    Hollywood is making some big Valentine's Day cash off Fifty Shades of Grey, the movie adapted from the first book of E. L. James's mommy-porn trilogy. Let me say right up front that I have not read these books, because life is too short for that. But, like every living human in the industrialized world, I've been bludgeoned with so much unrelenting chatter about these books that I can recap the general plot: buff young billionaire punishes and dominates sweet young virgin in his sex dungeon, but also everywhere else.

    Danny Cardwell's picture

    The Biggest Economic Issue Republicans Are Ignoring

    How does a producer decide whether to employ additional units of a resource? This question is posed in the 6th edition of a textbook titled "Economics: Private and Public Choice". We (the collective labor force) have been reduced to "units of a resource".

    Another election cycle is upon us, and the crowded field of Republican candidates are pushing the same truncated arguments from past elections. “It will be different this time." “If we stick to our conservative principles we can't lose.” Tragically, most of the solutions they offer don't address the root cause of many of our socioeconomic problems. The labor force (at all levels) has been relegated to being nothing more than an appendage. That's a systemic problem that no one on the right is going to address.

    Michael Maiello's picture

    Surviving The Daily Show

    The Daily Show was obviously a great thing for American comedy.  At its best, it showed us what comedy can really do for society and reminded us why, in Shakespeare's King Lear, the Fool alone was able to speak truth to power.  The best moment for The Daily Show, to me, was when host Jon Stewart appeared as a guest on CNN's Crossfire in 2005 and so embarassed its host that CNN ultimately had to abandon the show.

    Ramona's picture

    We Need Paid Sick Leave Because Workers Are Humans First

    There's a fuss going on in Michigan over whether the state should mandate paid sick leave for all workers.  It's the Democrats who are proposing it but the Republicans dominate the government, so at this point it's not a question of winning the issue, it's a question of how far their bill gets before it fails.  (The sad backstory:  This same bill was first introduced in 2012.  The Republicans made sure it didn't get to committee for consideration. It was reintroduced in 2013.  Same story.  Now, in 2015, the Dems, bless their hearts, are trying again.)

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    A Story from the Crusades

    Apparently, some people are very upset that President Obama suggested that some Christians did bad things during the Crusades. Where does he get off saying something like that? Let me tell you a little story from the Third Crusade.

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