*

*
MoPOP at dusk, Seattle

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

1.29.14


Obama has got wise and decided to go it alone. A guy can only get kicked around for so long before he figures out the score. Republicans who bemoan the lack of bipartisanship should take a long hard look in the mirror. Five years of nothing but obstruction, you can't blame the guy for not falling for the Charlie Brown, Lucy Van Pelt kick the football routine one last time. Our president has come to the middle too many times and had the opposition take another step back.

*

Ex venture capitalist hoohaw Tom Perkins engaged in an unfortunate bit of rhetoric when he compared the current social climate for one percenters to kristallnacht, a poor choice of words he has since apologized for.


Now I have no personal beef with either the rich or the poor. Still the reality is that we have had a huge flow of wealth to the top of the economic pyramid over the past three decades and it is obvious that the system isn't working too well for lower and middle class americans. Great to win, sure sucks to lose, but in the end an economic system that might prove unsustainable. Somebody might do something radical one day like storm the Bastille.


Kind of stupid to compare the social castigation of the apex dwellers with the final solution. Doubly dumb for a guy like Perkins who was found guilty in 1996 of involuntary manslaughter for causing the death an innocent sailor with his yacht.

The infamous $130 million dollar carbon fiber yacht. quite the ketch.
The yacht, which Perkins christened the Maltese Falcon, perhaps best illustrates his twin loves of excess and a good challenge. The vessel, the length of a football field, is made from the same carbon-fiber material as a B-1 bomber; he equipped it with sails that unfurl at the touch of a screen and flags that spelled out in maritime code, "Rarely does one have the privilege to witness vulgar ostentation on such a grand scale." 
Way to rub our noses in it, Tom. That is precisely the message we all love so from your ilk. And check out the nice $400k Richard Mille watch. Sweet!


The wealthy do create jobs but too many involve low wage people asking other low wage people if they want fries with their order. People are sick of the double irish games, the offshore shells, the apples and g.e.'s that skate without paying domestic taxes. Hard to cry too much for this minority. But bravo to you folks for hiring such brilliant tax attorneys.

I think that the rich tend to overestimate what their brilliance has contributed to their overall success and the poor tend to conversely devalue the legitimate contributions of the wealthy, many of them who pay a huge chunk of their fortunes in taxes. The truth is that most of us who have enjoyed success have had a lot of help along the way. People like Tom Perkins might try to show a little humility if he is really worried about the ire of the working class.

*

Today we get a new farm bill. A bill that cuts $800 million in SNAP programs and food stamps but heavily subsidizes corporate corn, soybeans, wheat, rice, cotton and peanut farmers. Socialism is of course real bad, that is unless it is being suckled through a copacetic corporate teat.


How long you think before Google has its own military force? Reports are that some dark suited guys with wireless ear mikes are now guarding the Google Shuttles from San Francisco to the Silicon Valley. Have to wonder if the Apple / Google thing will ever reduce itself to a shooting war?

*

5 comments:

Ken Seals said...

I'm afraid I can't buy your point about jobs created by the rich being low paid positions. How often do you see Mercedes/Ferraris/Bentleys, etc. at McDonalds or Taco Bell. Almost never I bet. You will find those people at the yacht clubs, boat dealers, private jet businesses and the like. All those business have employees who make very good salaries.
Ken

Anonymous said...

Yeah yeah but what about the real big issue. Let's talk about all food handlers being forced by the jan 1 health code passed by state, having to wear gloves. The glove lobby and the ignorant germaphobes will fill the land fills with rubber gloves to achieve a false sense of safety. Who wears gloves when they cook for their family?
Add the expense of a pair of gloves to my order please.
F.M. Deli life.
Deli guy.

Jon Harwood said...

Jobs created to service the rich can occasionally pay well. However at present too much of the money supply is now in the hands of the very rich and this choking off of the buying power of the vast majority is a drag on the economy. Our country seems to cycle between the excesses of the right and the left. We seem to do best when the lower end get a fairer deal without overly inhibiting entrepreneurial activity. All of this is complicated by globalization which is also now showing its negative side. I.e. Investment by the rich now creates jobs in china, enriches the investor and leaves the vast majority in the US behind.

Jon Harwood said...

It is true that rubber gloves are the defining issue of our time and a potent symbol of---something :-)

Anonymous said...

don't forget finding work as lawn jockeys, ken