This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on November 21, 2008 11:32 AM. The previous post in this blog was Sold. The next post in this blog is Z-Bo's heading to L.A.. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Friday, November 21, 2008

But you tell me, over and over and over again

Brooding about our financial troubles on these shortening late fall days is no fun. For a moment there yesterday afternoon, I noticed a vague sensation that the electricity was going to go off, and not come back on for a long time. Of course, the feeling passed, the lights stayed on, and life went on as usual. But a shadow of of impending doom is still hanging around.

It reminds me a little of Y2K. Remember when we all fretted about whether the world was going to end when our computers all had to process the date of 1-1-00? At least back then, once we made it through the first morning of the new millennium, the threat was over. Not so this time. Every day feels a little like the eve of destruction.

Comments (39)

I think part of the problem is timing: who is our damn President right now? The guy in office clearly does not care, and the guy who's about to take office is trying to observe the custom that you don't get to be President until the guy from the Supreme Court makes you say that thing.

Honestly, there is no leadership from the top these days. Not saying a magic wand from the President could fix this, but it would at least help remove this sensation of being adrift in a foggy sea.

But hey...Sarah Palin's up in al-LAS-ka savin' one turkey! while the other poor birds get their necks wrung in that cone thingy as she prattles on and on and on...
I guess I am glad she's not "the one", at least for now.
We have entertainment as long as the power stays on.

I hear you on the eve of destruction vibe.
I have to say this last few weeks have been some of saddest ever for me as my old friend and cable access co-host died. He was only 39 and left behind a wife and 18-month-old son. The relevance here is that I met him doing banquets 20 years ago, and over the years he became famous for researching a party and knowing when to bail out. If we saw he had transferred to another party, we'd try and follow as there usually was a great reason. And if he bailed completely, that was a sign of big trouble ahead.
Well, by dying, James has bailed out of the entire situation and that's a bad sign of what is to come.
The surreal part is the cable show that has limped along for 10 months while we hoped he would recover, goes on. It has a life of its own, as they say. We're signed up through December so every week I've been looking at old tapes from a few years back to rerun and getting in a really heavy mood. It's also a little scary that James Shibley has taken an early out off this party - in banquet terms that would mean we are all in real trouble. The only difference from a banquet is that it wasn't his decision. In fact he tried really hard to stick around, so maybe we should just be grateful we're still alive and take it from there.

After Sam the Tram's interview on the radio today the "sinking feeling" causes begin right here in RiverCity. He knows little about financing and Portland's situation. And Jack, you pointed it out well with your followup interview. If we are to add in urban renewal debt on top of those you list, the outcome is frightening.

In recent urban renewal advisory meetings for different URAs, PDC staff has admitted that several bond issuances for projects have been delayed because of the bond market.

Sam knows little of what he should being Portland's future CEO.

The extension of the URA for the Pearl is going to allow them to issue twenty year bonds thru 2021. Taxpayers will be on the hook for the Pearl thru 2041.

Go by Streetcar!

What a week: FPDR unfunded liabilities > $1 billion, State of Oregon running into the red, PPS and Parks move to permit secret land deals, having sent its previous capital infusion to FL OHSU comes back pleading for a new one to build where it said it would the first time, and Sam announces City-funded local stimulus program while proposing to tax street trees because we can't afford leaf cleanups. My head hurts.

Jack, while reading your post I wondered how long it would take for someone to play the Blame Bush card. Dave J., you didn't disappoint. Only 7 minutes. Don't some of you give the guy to much credit? I mean, can he really be cunningly evil and an idiot who "does not care"? I just hope there will be some shifting of accountability which takes place after January 20. Or, will we have 4 more years of Blame it on Bush while Congress and the new guy get a pass!?

Bush was one of the biggest screw-ups in human history, but I blame all of us for not rising up and stopping this pathetic loser. That includes Nancy Pelosi and Reid.
By the way, I wouldn't bring up accountability. You sound like one of those 29% that still really supports this guy, so do him a favor and lose that kind of talk. If he were truly held accountable for what he's done he would serve several years in prison before being executed. We're talking about a million dead people here.
Denying the economic stuff is like denying that Charles Manson was guilty of robbing a bank too.

Executed? That seems a bit of a stretch. I'd love to know who else Bill has on his list for that level of punishment.

Bill, what time/channel is your show on?

Mr. Shibley's premature passing reminds us that there are worse things than the economy. I do hope he left some life insurance proceeds for the 18 month old (the only upside to death, besides putting an end to chronic pain).

I'm just going by the laws as they stand. I'm not saying I wish any harm on him. He is the president. But when he gets out of office and if he faces a trial for his deeds he will be in real trouble.
As for other people: Start with Dick Cheney.
What did you think they were doing when they started the attempt to immunize themselves from past war crimes? They know what they did. So do we. The question is accountability.
I'm not a capital punishment advocate. I don't want the state to have that power. If Bush were found guilty and served the rest of his life in prison that would satisfy what should happen for me.

I think it's nearly impossible to prosecute U.S. Presidents for policies/wars/decisions made in their official capacity. The Kangaroo D.A. in Texas epitomizes the danger of politically motivated prosecutions (he's indicted everybody except the baloney sandwich).

I also think it would set a very dangerous precedent, no matter what your political affiliation.

Your best case scenario would be an indictment in The Hague, which would complicate W's foreign travel.

I know it's probably not going to happen but I bet if we had prosecuted Richard Nixon, then some of his henchmen like one Richard Cheney would have wondered about going through with their own horrible deeds. Of course, Nixon was Mother Theresa compared to these mothers.
The Hague's definitely going to move on this and their case is beyond airtight. You don't just attack a country because you think it'll be a threat to you someday. That is barbaric, immoral, and ultimately dumb - and that describes President Bush pretty well.
The last rerun of James Shibley will be Sunday at 10 on 22, Tuesday at 10 on 23. I picked it at random, just reaching into the box of over 240 tapes. It's from 2004 and it shows us speaking out against what has happened at a time when it was not as popular. Now even Bush's people trash him.
I actually think the Dems have to go after Bush and Cheney for what they did just on a political level. Otherwise they'll just be sitting there listening to how this was all Obama's fault - a tactic Rush is already on with his "Obama's recession" BS.

I'd settle for shunning - political, corporate and social death for these soulless predators. And no library for Bush (not that it would have been much of a library anyway with his papers withheld indefinitely and a single copy of The Very Hungry Caterpillar languishing next to Millie's Book).

Stop wasting your time by looking backward.

It's time to look forward.

It's criminal that our Congress is now in recess for the holiday. It's also criminal that they didn't go right back in with their sleeves rolled up right after the election.

Blaming Bush is not going to fix things, nor is worshipping Obama.

What should be going on is the present and future President conducting a public transition -- acknowledging what was done right, and what needs to be changed. They should be appearing side by side, reassuring the citizenry, and prodding Congress to get some solutions going. If they don't want to do anything, then get out of the way, and name some people who can fix things.

Perhaps this is too simplistic an approach.

I too am off on a recess - the annual visit the relatives back east for feasting, kibbitzing, and yacking about how to solve the world's problems. But at the same time, I'll still be working with my colleagues in Paris and Hillsboro, making sure the business keeps going through these challenging times.

To me the glass is still half full, and I'm working with my colleagues to keep it that way or better.

It really torques me to see the City of Portland worrying about another tax to pay for leaf collection - as if leaves have never cluttered the streets before. Or even worse, not understanding the pension shortfall that is facing Portland.

It also torques me that since my house is in order, I have to pay for the blunders of the other idiots.


Let's get past this quickly.

Mike (one of the many) I am with you....Let's just move forward, OK? Can we all shut up about the Bush Adminstration, Cheney, and all the rest of that? It does us no good. The world is in a financial crisis, and sad to say, it is not all George Bush's fault.

Congress should give up those long weeks in The Hamptons or where the heck ever, and they should deal with the disasters we have to deal with tomorrow. To go back to their priveliged lives is criminal. I know I have to work thru the holidays, and they should too. What a bunch of hypocrates.

You want to talk about the future: Is this Citigroup thing their derivatives triggering impossible guarantees? Is that the problem here? If the derivatives are starting to unravel how can we possibly stop that since there is 700 trillion dollars worth of them out there?

I'm with Bill on this. Bush should be arrested and put on trial.

If Nixon had been tried then maybe Bush the Daddy wouldn't have invaded Panama for starters.

Bush II broke new ground for stupidity and we let him get away with it. He has violated his command responsibilities and needs to be tried for that if nothing else. And as a veteran may I point out that military personnel are required to obey their orders, or face the consequences. Bush has his orders, so to speak. Its the Constitution. And he failed to follow the requirements of getting a Declaration of War and he is being allowed to get away with it.

I will part company with Bill on what to do upon conviction. Bush needs to spend the remainder of his days at Walter Reed Army Hospital cleaning the dirty linens of those injured in his war. Twelve hours a day, six days a week with half the day off on Sunday. Henceforth he shall be referred to as "boy" as in "Boy fetch that bed pan".


I can put it in future terms: What are we going to say when these little kids grow up and start asking questions about this era especially when they could be asked to pay for it?
"Sorry, kid, after 9/11 we gave up some of our American freedoms because we were scared and just wanted to be safe. And we didn't speak out because we couldn't stand to be criticized and called unpatriotic even though we knew what was happening was wrong. And even when Bush was still president we already just wanted to move on because doing what was right was too much of a hassle."
Maybe we can look forward but what are we going to tell these kids when they grow up and look back? "Just pay for our mistakes and don't ask any questions?"
I'd like to be able to say some bad men did some serious crimes but we stopped them and then charged them with breaking the law. Pretend for a second that we're still a nation of laws as opposed to our current de facto dictatorship - then isn't that what we're supposed to do?

The Bush Hate is strong in this sector, Captain.

It appears the citizens have lost faith in their leader, Mr. Spock. Oddly, they continue to respect and re-elect their legislative representatives to the national government.

As...if...the...Presidency were the only branch of government necessary to exercise power. We will monitor this planet and observe how they view their next President.

I think this is just more of the victim society and the "Nice shot, Timmy" softness that's hurting America.
I used to jog around a track and occasionally there'd be a soccer game going on. No matter what a kid did it was, "Nice shot, good job." Even if he tripped and fell down.
President Bush did a terrible job but will he be held accountable for it? Will the Wall Street executives or the 3 automakers? No way.
The immediate mood will be mild consternation followed by a call to move on. Then the automakers will appear on Oprah and say they took the private jets because they have been victims of commercial airlines before. Oprah will hug them and they'll be called heroes brave enough to speak out about their feelings.
So let's all say it together: "Heck of a job, Georgie. Sorry you were a victim of Mean Moron Mind Syndrome. None of this is your fault. We love you for who you are."
Then it's a few years off followed by a role as beloved elder statesman of the Republican party.

It's hard to imagine how anyone can defend W. from the well deserved venom. The dems who didn't fight back because of political considerations have a lot to answer for as well.

Bush supporters have been programmed by Rush and the other right-wing-talk losers to regard criticism of Bush as a Derangement Syndrome driven by irrational hatred. That's how they can nod their heads in agreement even as their idol W changes course drastically. For example, we're now negotiation a withdrawal from Iraq in 2011. That's a timetable but when Bush does it, he's not waving the white flag of surrender, he's just scheduling victory to take place in 3 more years. Have you ever seen a war where the parties got together and planned victory for 3 years down the road?
Of course it's ridiculous.
But if you criticize this unnecessary, illegal, and immoral war you are letting your hatred of Bush interfere with rational thought - according to the mind-controlled minions that still don't get it, and will never get it.
Think of how powerful this programming has been. These people must know about the tens of thousands of our soldiers who've been burned, or had limbs amputated; who've had brain trauma
or mental problems from this fiasco, and now the person who sent them on this so-called vital mission is making a deal to take them back out? Maybe it wasn't so vital that they go in the first place. But if anyone suggests Bush made a mistake here, the zombie-like supporters rush in to call it Bush hate.
To these people, thinking is an inconvenience, and they nodded obediently as their right-wing talk masters led the whole wretched bunch of them over a metaphorical cliff.
I disagree with that one suggestion that Bush care for wounded soldiers at Walter Reed. I don't think he should be allowed near these men and women. But I could see Lars, Sean, Rush and the rest of the Bush war marketers spending the rest of their lives taking care of these soldiers after apologizing for what they helped to do.
Of course, they won't - they're too busy flapping their mouths about something else now.

Bill, I hope that you can get to the point where you're able to embrace the future and forget the past. Disgust with Bush and his administration is understandable and now universal, but you are beginning to sound as though your hatred for him is consuming you. That is not healthy and it erodes your credibility.

'they' don't speak to defend W; such self-inflicted alcoholic brain damage as his, is indefensible. No; 'they' speak to out-shout and override those pesky 'liberals,' from smartass saying the truth that fear-encased conservative totalitarians are self-made victims. As Bill says, (as much as US is a 'conservative society,' which in fact, it is NOT, at all, and never was), it is a self-made "victim society." Victim of self-hate.

Here is one proof: Former News Radio Staffer Spills the Beans on How Shock Jocks Infect Hatred and Anger, by Dan Shelley, © 2008 Milwaukee Magazine, 11/13/2008. In which an eyewitness who used to assist the hate-talk LIARS criminals, (until his guilty conscience demanded confession in order to value himself and be worthy to live), states: "a talk show host must perpetuate the notion that his or her listeners are victims, and the host is the vehicle by which they can become empowered. ... the host will emphatically defend those loyal listeners. ... they appeal to a segment of the population that feels disenfranchised and even victimized" by FEARing THEIR OWN LIFE, failing.

In essence, hate-talk listeners make themselves victims of We, the People government, (and are addicted to hate-US-talk dosages which surge the adrenaline 'high' of self-victimizing self-hating), because they are too lazy or lost to learn how to participate, (with We People, in government).

Shelley's confession-essay Feature, in Milwaukee Magazine a week ago, is causing on-air a firestorm of hate from the LIARS crowd, either eating their guts out keeping it inside -- pretending to ignore newspapers now indicting them as traitors against America's democracy, or a firestorm of ad hominem LIARS hate shouted at the messenger and newspapers of truth. You can find the essay widespread on the internet, (e.g., Digby's blog).

Yet lesser notice is coming to Bruce Murphy's insights in the fray, sitting as the Features Editor who signed-off on running Shelley's insider expose. Murphy's Law -- Why We Went After Talk Radio, And: Sykes Misfires, by Bruce Murphy, 11/18/2008.

Whew. Beginning Thursday, Milwaukee Magazine was deluged with e-mail .... naysayers demanded to know how we could run such a story, and were reinforced in their views by ... [LIARS look-alike] Sykes, who spent two hours bashing the article on his Friday morning (programming).

Ironically, it was Sykes who edited and contributed to some of the first “Pressroom” columns for this magazine, back when he served as its editor [... like LIARS, was 'legitimate' in media, long ago]. He helped create a tradition of 25 years' standing: Milwaukee Magazine is known for its coverage of the media, which is based on the simple principle that transparency in the industry is a good thing. Consumers of the media – and the American DEMOCRACY – are better served by the light of such scrutiny.

Why run the story? Well, in four days, the magazine’s Web site had 49,000 unique visitors, about 10 times more traffic than normal. It was an editor’s dream. But frankly, I had bigger plans. Before the story was published, I contacted Sykes and made him an offer: I would leak the piece ahead of time to him and offer the chance to write his own story, defending talk radio and responding to Shelley’s claims. ... But after that, I never heard from him.

The value of publications [and persons] is their “good will” in the community. If the publication begins to get the reputation that it doesn’t play fair, doesn’t strive at all times to be accurate and correct errors, this will generate bad will that lowers its prestige and readership.

Conservative [hate-] talk radio is a different animal entirely. ... Their appeal arises precisely from a lack of good will toward certain segments of the community. And yet when Shelley offered a behind-the-scenes description of how this approach works, Sykes cried foul. But his response merely reinforced Shelley’s critique.

As Shelley’s story describes it, [hate-] talk radio hosts like to portray themselves and their audiences as victims of a liberal media. Sure enough, Sykes began his program by portraying the story as part of a liberal conspiracy to bring back the fairness doctrine requiring radio programs to present both sides of an issue.

Shelley notes how Charlie would personally belittle people when he couldn’t win his arguments on the merits. Sure enough, Sykes suggested Shelley must be “a disgruntled former employee.”

What’s striking about Sykes’ blogged response to Shelley’s essay is how unresponsive it is. Sykes doesn’t directly address or deny that conservative [hate-] talk radio hosts (1) perpetuate the [defrauding] notion that listeners are victims and ... (2), (3), ... (10).

Rather than addressing these specific observations, [LIARS look-alike] Sykes mostly heaps scorn ....

The only "victim society" are the guilt-ridden sociopaths hiding away from We People, our progress, and themselves, inside the hate-talk 'high' fantasy bubble.

No doubt every day ends up feeling like the precursor 'eve of destruction' -- our own personal and community destruction, our democracy's destruction -- as long as LIARS hate-talk 'tells us over and over and over again' we are victims and 'they' take 'divine privilege' -- unassailable, beyond the actionable Laws of Man and rights of humankind -- to illegally and immorally steal our resources and civil reserve.

No doubt every day ends up feeling like the eve of our destruction, when we spend our wages with local merchants who pay LIARS to tell us over and over and over again we are 'their' victims. And, yeah, W. and Daddy-o -- in fact, the whole famn damily of Bush-leaguers, shows We People the remote symbol of the virtual classless clueless moral retardation deserving to be bashed.

Yet when our general Welfare's societal action becomes a matter of lynchmobs and lawsuits, We People can know -- NO doubt -- the certain location location location for bashing is the local seats-of-power and storefronts of unfair anti-democracy totalitarians.

Like, a radio station, oops, I mean 'media property' is a storefront.

How about you, Ron Tonkin -- are you going to get on-air with LIARS again soon, for tomorrow's destruction, and tell us over and over and over again that We are victims of Detroit's bankruptcy by the embezzlements of you and your filthy rich auto-industry executives, and so, Ron, Mr. T., DEMAND again that US taxpayer victims HAVE TO pony-up billion$ and billion$ and billion$ MORE ... for YOU? and LIARS?

Sorry, sir. The truth going around on the internet says 'threat' of hate-talk fear is over -- you're sunk; and the promising potential of We People is raising all our own boats.

"But if anyone suggests Bush made a mistake here, the zombie-like supporters rush in to call it Bush hate. "

I could give a rip if you hate him or not, disagree with his policies or not, or think he is the biggest idiot ever elected. I agree with you that only those true die-hards would challenge on those points. But to call for the guy to be killed (I'm sorry, "executed") is over the top. Even Charlie Rangel, who was until this past year quite the icon for the Democrats, stood up when Hugo Chavez visited the U.N. and called for nearly the same.

It isn't about idolizing Bush, it is about having a minimal amount of perspective and not treating the guy like the spawn of Satan and Hitler. More importantly, the suggestion that we should be enthusiastic about prosecuting, imprisoning, and potentially executing a sitting President because you don't like his policies does, in fact, set a bad policy for the future. Let's not forget that it can be a tough job, sometimes. You can't, on the one hand, say he is completely inept, yet on the other hand say he is so smart and devious, too. If it is the former, we don't punish those with diminished capacity. If it is the latter ... well, I've never heard anyone on either end of the political spectrum claim this guy was a college professor.

Thanks for your concern but I'll be okay. Believe me I want to look back on the Bush administration - unfortunately it goes on 'til early next year.
And I'd be more worried about my credibility if I wasn't angry right now. I mean what does it take?

Calling for Bush's execution is easy -- even a no-brainer, based on the war crimes he's committed. It's "looking backward" in the same sense that prosecution of a serial murderer is obsession with the past. I'd be satisfied that justice was served, though, if he were just deposited in downtown Baghdad, instead of retreating to his extradition-free refuge in Uruguay.

Mike, the other one,
You're doing a standard blog move of arguing against something nobody said. I'm not calling for Bush to be executed - I'm just saying if you ran him through our criminal justice system or the military version that is what could happen.
You say that's "over the top". Did you think it was over the top when Vincent Bugliosi prosecuted Charles Manson for murder? Vincent seems like a respected member of the judicial system, right?
Well, you might want to pick up his latest book, "The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder". Let him lay out the case for you. Here's a quote, "For anyone interested in true justice, impeachment alone would be a joke for what Bush did."

That is not healthy and it erodes your credibility.

I love it when people who voted for Sarah Palin question someone's credibility. It's truly priceless.

What Happy People Don’t Do, By RONI CARYN RABIN, November 19, 2008.

Happy people spend a lot of time socializing, going to church and reading newspapers — but they don’t spend a lot of time watching television, a new study finds.

That’s what unhappy people do.

Although people who describe themselves as happy enjoy watching television, it turns out to be the single activity they engage in less often than unhappy people, said John Robinson ... “TV was the one activity that showed a negative relationship. Unhappy people did it more, and happy people did it less.”

What is this "reading newspapers" you speak of?

"...if people found out what we've done, they'll chase us down the street and lynch us" -- Prez DaddyBush, answering Sarah McClendon's question, "What'll happen if people ever found out the truth?"

Don't tell us, we'll take your word for it. Get the rope.

The End, by Micheal Lewis.

It is about big finance. (Snippet: "At some point, I gave up waiting for the end.")

The eve of whose destruction -- workers or bosses?

Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Great Famine, By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, November 22, 2008.

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) -- Church bells tolled, candles flickered under falling snow and national flags, adorned with black ribbons, flew in the Ukrainian capital Kiev Saturday as the country marked the anniversary of the start of a Soviet-era famine that killed millions.

... the 1932-33 tragedy ... 3.5 million perished ... up to 10 million ... orchestrated by dictator Josef Stalin to force peasants to give up their land and join collective farms ... 1932 authorities confiscated grain, livestock and other food in villages across the Soviet Union ... exported the grain [in trade] to build factories and arm its military.

Bolivian Police Occupy American-Owned Ranch, By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, November 22, 2008.

LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) -- Police and government land inspectors have occupied a ranch owned by a U.S. man who has resisted President Evo Morales' plans to redistribute idle land to the country's poor.

... Caraparicito Ranch owned by Montana native Ronald Dean Larsen ... future of the ranch was unclear ... not yet determined if all or part of the property might be expropriated ... not yet finished inspecting the land and titles ... 12-year-old effort to untangle centuries of corruption and confusion in land records ... Land found to be idle or fraudulently obtained will be redistributed to Bolivia's long-oppressed indigenous poor. ... officials claim 141,000 acres ... but Larsen told only 22,000 acres ....

''They said they would not allow the process of land reform to continue, but today we are demonstrating legal force of the state is stronger,'' said Government Minister Alfredo Rada.

The subject Caraparicito Ranch, close inside Bolivia's eastern border, is about 50 miles distance across the western Paraguay border to the US military base(s) guarding the 100,000-acre Bush property and concrete-walled compound there.

Power to the people on the land, of the land, with the land.

Jack, I know it would make it easier for you to vilify me by thinking that I voted for McCain and Palin, but that's not the case. I voted for Obama & Biden. Sorry I don't fit your stereotype!

Bill, it takes the ability to keep life in perspective.

Sorry I don't fit your stereotype!

Oh, but you do fit one of my stereotypes.


How the Rich Are Destroying the Earth, By Herve Kempf, Chelsea Green Publishing, November 22, 2008.

... it will be necessary for the middle classes and part of the oligarchy -- which is not monolithic -- to clearly take sides for public freedoms and the common good. The mass media constitute a central challenge. Today they support capitalism because of their own economic situation. They depend, for the most part, on advertising. That makes it difficult for them to plead for a reduction in consumption.

And no library for Bush (not that it would have been much of a library anyway with his papers withheld indefinitely and a single copy of The Very Hungry Caterpillar languishing next to Millie's Book).

There should be a copy of "My Pet Goat" in the Bush library as well. If they don't have one, I'll be happy to have Amazon send one over for the collection.

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