“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Sunday, February 21, 2010

'I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!'- Messages for Our Rulers and Masters



  2. Threats Against IRS Employees on the Rise, Official Says

    Wall Street Journal

    WASHINGTON—The federal agency charged with ensuring the safety of IRS employees said it has seen an uptick in the past several years in threats against agency personnel.

    In the past four years, there appears to have been a "steady, upward trend" in the number of threats against IRS employees, said an official with the Treasury Department's Inspector General for Tax Administration. That assessment, offered in response to an inquiry from Dow Jones Newswires, is based on preliminary data, the official cautioned.

    On Thursday, 53-year old Andrew Joseph Stack crashed his private plane into an Austin, Texas, office building that housed IRS workers, killing himself and one IRS employee and injuring 13 others.

    Following the attack, Inspector General J. Russell George said his agency will consider whether changes to security policies are necessary to improve safety.

    "There's no question that in the wake of this tragedy, we will be directing attention to that very issue," Mr. George said in an interview. "There are limitations, however, on what you can anticipate about what a disturbed, troubled person can do."

    In recent years, TIGTA has investigated roughly 900 threats made against IRS employees annually. In 2009, that number climbed above 1,000.

  3. A year later, reality sets in on housing
    By ALAN ZIBEL (AP) – 3 days ago

    WASHINGTON — The new president climbed aboard Air Force One a year ago for a trip to Phoenix to reveal his strategy for attacking the housing crisis. It was a signal moment in the buoyant early days of Barack Obama's administration.

    The plan, Obama told a cheering audience of high school students, would keep as many as 9 million people in their homes by lowering their monthly mortgage payments. The program wouldn't save every home, Obama cautioned, but few people paid attention. Not with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner saying things like, "You'll start to see the effects quite quickly."

    Ambition, though, got far ahead of reality.
    The numbers show a program that failed to deliver. About 116,000 homeowners have had their loans modified to reduce their monthly payments, the Treasury Department said Wednesday. Only about $15 million in incentive money has been paid to more than 100 participating mortgage companies. That's 0.02 percent of the $75 billion available.

    "We were attempting to set realistic expectations, but I think we failed to do so," Michael Barr, an assistant Treasury secretary, said in an interview.


    While visiting Nevada, the state with the highest foreclosure rate in the nation , Obama announced a proposal to take $1.5 billion in funds originally designed to assist ailing banks and instead use the money to help the hardest-hit states stem the housing crisis…

    Let's put this into perspective:

    $50 billion of more than $173 billion that the U.S. government poured into AIG went to at least two dozen U.S. and foreign financial institutions.

    Goldman Sachs Group Inc, Deutsche Bank AG, Merrill Lynch, Societe Generale, Calyon, Barclays Plc, Rabobank, Danske, HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland, Banco Santander, Morgan Stanley, Wachovia, Bank of America, and Lloyds Banking Group.

    $173 billion of US taxpayer money to the people that caused the probem and after dithering for over a year $1.5 billion to the people that created the wealth that was extracted from them by the government.

    There is no governmental requirement that TARP banks have to do anything with the largesse they received from the government.


  5. ot:

    Israel using cheap platform for battle...


    Israel has a lot invested in doing littoral combat right. And, right now, the IDF is sending their Merkava Main Battle Tank to sea in LCTs.
    Rather than call the LCTs mere landing craft, why not call them Littoral Combat Boats (LCBs)? That’s what they are.
    Look. There’s plenty for IDF littoral combat forces to do. There’s plenty for smaller forces to do nearby–and given the constantly-increasing demands upon Israel’s “higher end” naval assets, the Israeli Navy seems to have decided to travel down a high-lo development path for littoral combat.
    Thus the LCB.
    Israel has hunted for a multi-mission littoral solution since about the nineties. After evaluating the really high (LPD-17) and high (LCS-1) end options, Israel threw in the towel on the littoral stuff, settling for a relatively conventional “small navy” supplement of MEKO-100 corvettes and some Dolphin Class subs.
    But interestingly, to bulk up amphibious support and offshore fires, Israel is pursuing a decidedly low-end option–the LCB.
    According to a September 22, 2009 Jerusalem Post article (no direct link available, sorry), Israel purchased several landing craft (the IDF has not mounted an amphibious assault since the early ’80s). Why? Well, the Post article gives a hint–it all goes back to Gaza:
    “In both conflicts, the navy faced almost zero resistance at sea, and during Cast Lead it was able to provide close artillery support for the Paratroopers Brigade – which maneuvered along the coast.”
    In Gaza, fire support was provided by Sa’ar boats, and those little ships used their tiny guns to great effect, hitting some 200 targets during Cast Lead. The most recent Jane’s Navy International (again, no link available) provided more details–it seems the Israeli Navy has purchased several 25 Meter/20 knot LCTs, sticking Merkava Main Battle Tanks upon them (or some troops, or, well, whatever fits…) and sailing away.
    “It is the navy’s mission to support the infantry and the best way to do it is with LCTs,” IN Captain (res) Mike Eldar, who commanded the IN’s amphibious flotilla in 1982, told Jane’s. “This is an important capability and will give the IDF more flexibility and maneuverability.”
    For duty off Gaza or off Lebanon, these ultra-cheap littoral combat boats (along with their hefty ‘ole mission module) will be a game changer.
    The U.S. has done similar things. Off Grenada, America supplemented its modest fire support assets by mounting tanks on LCUs. In Vietnam, we mounted tanks on LCMs, and during World War II we did the same thing. According to Oscar Gilbert’s Marine Tank Battles of the Pacific, landing-craft-mounted tanks even sank a few ships:
    Rowland Hall related: “We re-embarked them [three light tanks]. As we went around the tip of the peninsula inshore we spotted some Jap landing craft. We opened up on them with the 37 and machine guns. We bagged about three of those and set them on fire. A sort of naval battle using tanks.

  6. Well, seems that there is a growing segment of our population that is willing to shoot National Guardsmen, and other Federals.

    Just like there are many that shoot policemen, for sport and to support their madness.

    The fellow that flew into the IRS building, just another terrorist killer, a sub-par Mohammad Atta.

    About the amateur hour episode you'd expect from a American nut job, faux revolutionary.

  7. And you all will "Take it"

    No one is willing to vote with their feet.

    Check immigration to emigration numbers, legal and not. The whirled still thinks the US is the best place to be.

    More folks coming here, than any where else in the whirled. Not so many willing to leave the US, for those "greener" pastures overseas.

  8. You think things are bad, here.

    Toughen the fuck up.

  9. I was out and about yesterday and spoke to a gentleman who was taking some sun on the sidewalk outside his business establishment. I was shocked when he referred to the IRS kamikaze as a "hero."

    I would say that this man is about "fed up". I didn't ask but I would guess that he has some history with the IRS. Regardless, he went on to quote Jefferson:

    The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.

    I do not think that Joe Stack is a hero but I think he may have been pushed over the edge and there could be many Joe Stacks out there working their way through the compression process.

  10. Doug said...
    The Second Coming of Obamacare deserves much screeching and bitching.
    The Death of Freedom in America.
    To Rufus, Nirvana!

    Sun Feb 21, 08:49:00 AM EST

    Tear Up Your Card dot com

  11. VDH thinks the main motivator of tea baggers is anger at big government, big media elite treating us all like the dumb shits they think we are.

  12. Wow! The winter has been cold and I didn't mind it so much but today, it's currently a gloriously, sunny 51 with a predicted high of 64.


  13. Cool air, blue skies and warm sunshine over all the body...


  14. ORLANDO - Police in Orlando say a 50-year-old man taking a firearms certification course was shot in the foot after the instructor's gun discharged.

    The incident happened Saturday morning at a certification class for carrying concealed firearms.

    The student, Robert Frauman Jr., was taken to Florida Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

    No further details were provided by authorities.

  15. Shot in the foot at a firearms safety class.

    Reminds me of the video of the cop shooting himself in front of a classroom of children while talking about gun safety.

    Man! Does s__t ever happen!

  16. We've had it awful good. Some of us worked harder. Some were Luckier. Some poor pricks couldn't catch a break. But, the breaks were there to be caught.

    The man was living in a damned nice house, had a family. Was, obviously, able to make a buck. Had his own damned airplane. Killed himself, and tried to kill a lot of innocent people.

    He was a fucking prick.

  17. You have to be really careful with the firearms. One time, the only time, I made a mistake was up on Moscow Mountain with a cousin, we had been hunting grouse, and when I was getting in the car, just as I was unloading the double barrel, it discharged. Jesus. That was scary. I still don't know how it happened.

    Dad had a story, when he and some of his friends were going to Conklin Park to hunt ducks, how old George got to talking so much and laughing that he thumped the shotgun on the floor of the car, and it discharged, blowing a hole through the roof of the car.

    You must be careful.

  18. I can't imagine an "accidental" discharge. I started hunting when I was eight, or nine, I guess. The 410 was bigger than I was. I saw the damage a firearm could do.

    No, let me put it another way. I saw that a gun could "Kill" you. I don't "respect" guns. I "Fear" guns. As a result, I can "Enjoy" guns. I could no more comprehend the "I didn't know it was loaded" excuse, than "I didn't know it was a rattlesnake when I picked it up" story.

  19. I still don't know what happened, Ruf. It was a double barrel, Italian, and the fucker went off.

    Discharged into the dirt, thankfully.

    I still cannot understand it, you just got to be careful.

  20. I learned one hell of a lesson though.

  21. Maybe I've just been lucky. But, I've been damned careful, also. My father was a "meat" hunter. Didn't give two hoots, and a holler about "Sportsmanship." Would rather shoot the quail on the ground. Better return on the investment that way. Was semi-famous for the "two quail crossing" trick.

    Pounded it into me, "Unloaded Guns KILL." Never, ever, ever, ever point an "unloaded" gun at anybody, or toward anybody. I guess it stayed with me. I'm incredibly careful around guns.

  22. Damn right Rufus.

    My reaction was "JESUS, I can't believe that happened"

    But it did, sure as shit.

    My first gun was a .22 my age ten. Single shot.

    Then dad got me a single shot 20 guage at age 12.

    Got my first driver's license here at age 14.

    Daytime only, to help in harvest.

    I grew up on elk meat, 13 years in a row, dad scored.

    Ducks by the car full, mom got so tired of plucking them.

    But they were beautiful, I remember how their feathers, so beautiful, sort of took me out of myself.

    O Melody

  23. Was semi-famous for the "two quail crossing" trick.

    What's that?

    I nailed three, count 'em three, grouse a flying one tine, best I ever did.

    Nailed them, right in thick timber, with my Brittany Spaniel, named Ezra. He picked them up.

  24. whit said...

    " Wow! The winter has been cold and I didn't mind it so much but today, it's currently a gloriously, sunny 51 with a predicted high of 64.


    Cool air, blue skies and warm sunshine over all the body...


    Now Bob's gonna be waxing poetic about Whit funnin in the Sun in the buff.

  25. Rufus said

    Pounded it into me, "Unloaded Guns KILL." Never, ever, ever, ever point an "unloaded" gun at anybody, or toward anybody. I guess it stayed with me. I'm incredibly careful around guns.

    He sounds like my father. He taught us well. I'm surprised at the way I feel about guns today with the way I brought up around them. I was the son my father never had so I was his right hand man. I cleaned the guns, pressed the ammo, and knew how to load them.

  26. It was a Beretta, over under. 20 guage Ruf. Discharged under my nose.

  27. We obviously need to form a gun club.

    But from Idaho, Mississippi,to Penn and Hawaii, how?

    But, I'd be the first to sign up.

  28. I cleaned the guns, pressed the ammo, and knew how to load them.

    Wow! Okay, bob, stand aside.

  29. Long story short: You wait for two quail to "cross" and then knock'em both down with one shot.

    It wasn't to show off. Shells were an expense.

  30. The old injun had pretty good eyes.

  31. Reminds me of the joke:

    Send picture of boat


  32. I cleaned the guns, pressed the ammo, and knew how to load them.

    Shit, I knew I loved that woman.

  33. For the record, Howareya Doug, whit ain't no naturist.

  34. referring to Whit's sudden interest in Melody.

  35. Whit, I knew how to aim and fire, too.

  36. Stop it, you're killin' me.

  37. LOL.

    bob's on thin ice now.

  38. What about your fishing skills, Mel?

    Bait hooks? Clean fish? Run a trot line? Skull a boat?

  39. Well Whit, I've been fishing several times and all I can say is that I make great company.

  40. As far as boats go the only thing I'm good at is steering them right into the marsh.

  41. sunset...somewhere in Jersey....with my best friend's grandfather. I caught a sand shark, though.

  42. .Whit, I knew how to aim and fire, too.

    And somtimes Miss if she insists, and if she is really quick about it too, really quick about it... but I know the bard.

    Which doesn't make the heart ache any less

  43. I have had the most wonderful wife, she has struggled with me all these years.

    She is dying, and doing a wonerful job of it.

    She says,I am going out with grace.

    She will do it, too.

    For all that, I give her thanks.

    You might be so lucky too.

  44. An Honest-to-God Expert looks at Sea Level "Rise:" It's Bunkum

    Ain't happenin



    A Fraud

  45. Obama's so-called "deficit"

    I've seen it all before!

    Rosie the Rivet Missing in Action

  46. Rosie's gotta go back to school, Doug. Don't need no more riveters.

  47. I was thinking about a loose screw.

    ...and I ain't talkin al-Bob, neither.

  48. Bob. Why didn't you say anything?

    Of all of life's ordeals, that is the hardest.

    My deepest, deepest sympathy.

  49. I just read that, Bob. My heart goes out to you. I'm so sorry. That explains so much. May God be kind to you both.

  50. Melody, a woman of many talents.

  51. WASHINGTON (AP) - A governor who once led national Democrats say President Barack Obama's White House needs to change its political strategy.
    Gov. Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania calls Obama "the best communicator in the history of political campaigning." But Rendell says it turned out that Obama didn't communicate very well in his first year in office - and that Republicans were able to "take the spin" right from the start.

    For example, Rendell says Democrats didn't do a good job explaining the stimulus package and thus lost the PR war to the GOP.

    Rendell, a former chairman of the Democratic National Committee, doesn't see a need for a White House shake-up. But he says White House officials "need to take a deep breath, look at what happened and revamp their strategy" - and rely on Obama's skills from there.

    Rendell spoke on ABC's "This Week."

  52. My wife is not dying at all.

    I may be, but she ain't. I may be but she isn't. Actually I kinda hope I do. She has developed a little tremor in her right hand ,and sometimes, in her face.

    I am not sure what to make of this.

    Thank you for the heart felt heart felt.

    I said that out of damn near hatred for Melody, who walked away with my old aging heart, and she, Melody, is a woman I like.

    I can be tough when I need to be.


    it was just to say, we can all play the game

  53. If a man's wife was really dying, he wouldn't be dinking around on a blog all day every day.

  54. Melody no longer exists. When someone plays on people's feelings because of hatred for me then I will vanish. Poof...I'm gone.

    And since I supposedly walked away from an old aging heart, I am now the bitch?

    Now you don't have to worry about loving me or hating me because I am no longer.

    Sorry, T, I couldn't resist. I wasn't trying to offend you. I will revert back after I wash the color out of my hair.

  55. Do you see why I am really interested only in geo politics on this blog...

    what a bunch of shit...

    What is important today?

    the IAEA came out and said that iran was on the path to going hot with a nuke...

    the iaea came out and said the site in syria had nuke particles

    iran launched it's 1st destroyer

    israel launched it's largest drone fleet (as big as a 737) that can reach iran

    obama wants moslems nations to learn how to build rockets for nasa

  56. bob, that was a jerky thing to do.

  57. Near's I can figger it, Bob is trying to alienate all the womenfolk on the EB in one fell swoop.

  58. boobie, that was as crude and scum laden an action as ever taken here, at the Elephant Bar.

    Not playing upon National pride or religious fervor, nor even race baiting to draw a reaction. No you dropped to the level of whale turds in your claim that dear and beloved wife was dying, "with dignity".

    Only to later tell us , ha ha, you were just being mean to MLD.

    You are a rude low life scum.

    Little wonder 22 members of your family disowned you and you sleep alone, in the cold.

  59. boobie, you never fail to amaze!!

  60. I never ever played on you feelings.


  61. You're dead to me, Bob-O.

    Never another kind word. You're an ignorant, selfish, narcissistic, piece of shit.

    Go fucking die. I don't care.

  62. Uh, this is some weird shit.

    You shouldn't talk like that, Bob. Karma and all that.

  63. And many have been reluctant to say they would support a compromise measure without first knowing what was in it.

    Leaders of the National Governors Association meeting in Washington on Sunday expressed frustration that that they had been largely shut out of negotiations over the future of the health care system, even though they would be responsible for carrying out many of the changes envisioned by federal officials. They said they want more of a voice in shaping those changes.

    “It’s important that governors be at the table and bring our perspective to the debate,” said Gov. Jim Douglas of Vermont, a Republican who is chairman of the National Governors Association.

    Rate Increases

  64. You never played on my feelings but you have the patrons of the EB, just to spite me for whatever reason you think I've done to you to make you hate me. That's not fair. It's not fair to your wife and it's not fair to the people here who were willing to understand the craziness of Bipolar acts the past few months. It was way wrong.

  65. After Argentina increased its opposition to planned British oil drilling around the Falkland Islands, the BBC's Rajesh Mirchandani finds the islanders hopeful of a lucrative future.


    Yet few here are worried about shipping restrictions imposed by Argentina in protest at imminent oil drilling by British companies.


    Lewis Clifton won't tell me how much oil he thinks there may be. But it's clear he's banking on a bonanza. Mr Clifton is the managing director of Byron Marine, one of several British and Falkland Islands' companies involved in the exploration.

    Argentine Pressure

  66. that's why this is a geo-political blog...

    not the romance and bullshit bar...

    dont care about feelings, love, shaved legs, bipolar, depression, erections or snatch...

    I care about tea parties, iaea, israel, nukes, emps, glocks, how to impeach obama, the dollar, yuan, yen and euro....

  67. They won't be disappointed because there are a host of small political activist groups and all the national parties begging for their membership. These groups hope to strengthen their political influence by increasing their membership and turning their own agenda volume up.


    Tea Partiers need to keep demonstrating in mass. Hold more Tea Parties, carry signs, grab the microphone and speak their minds at every opportunity.

    Any group of any kind that would suggest stopping or re-naming Tea Party rallies and demonstrations isn't connected to the real movement and its success at grabbing national attention with their simple agenda of "Hey, elected official, you work for me; stop spending my kids' future." Make yourself heard, America.

    Tea Parties

  68. Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes
    Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes
    Silver white winters that melt into springs
    These are a few of my favorite things

    Oh, and of course, I prefer Sigs to glocks.

  69. Well, a) I didn't start any romance on this blog. b) I'm not the only one that talks bullshit on this blog and c) We all know what you care about and don't care about. That's not going to stop me from talking about the weather or fishing or shaving my legs. You can either get use to it or find another blog. Now we know you're not going to find another blog so just except the fact that I'm here. I never interrupt your political discussions and I always try to wait until 8:00 when all the old people are suppose to be in bed. (:

  70. This, along with other points raised by Iranian officials and independent media, leads to serious doubts about the authenticity of the documents.

    The absence of any confidentiality stamps, dates, or senders and recipients markings on the rather detailed documents was one of the main points that Tehran had raised in a 117-page document that disputed the authenticity of the alleged papers.

    During his interview with Press TV, Soltanieh said that he has asked the IAEA director general why he included a reference to past issues regarding Tehran's nuclear program in his first report on Iran.

    Suspicions About Iran

  71. Linear emailed me about Bob. I could hardly believe my eyes.

    I don't believe I have seen anything on the net that is so debased. Bob has debased his wife and he has played the EB participants for suckers.

    Bob, you are beneath contempt.

  72. Shanxi government spokeswoman Wang Laying said the panic may have been prompted by a misunderstanding over earthquake survival drills being conducted by local authorities.

    "People get the false impression that an earthquake will occur. Some people, especially those in rural areas, don't have a great capacity for understanding what's really going on," Wang said.

    However, the The Beijing News quoted a provincial earthquake bureau official as saying no such drills had been conducted, and police investigations were continuing.

    Chinese Panic

  73. We've had a falling out, and anybody on this blog, can have that wanton switch, but there is no grace with it.

  74. I have tried to express my answers to life's problems on this blog.

    But fuck it, it just ain't worth it.

    Anybody can have "Melody".

  75. First to go was the Buckhorn Bar in North Fork. Old tack, traps and guns hanging from the ceiling. A porceline urinal so big you could walk into it. Bill and Angelo playin' cowboy music on Saturday nights. Now a fuckin' fern bar.

    Next was Jim's Place in Clovis. New owners there, too, and the fern bar transition didn't work out as planned. Jim's is gone forever.

    I hope to gosh that this fern bar craze's run its course. I'd hate like hell to see the Elephant go down. I'm tired of lookin' for good bars.

    It don't need sayin', but it wasn't Melody's doin' that caused this latest ruckus.

    The next son of a bitch that starts spoutin bad poetry in here, I'll shoot him myself.


    Don't try it, Doug. It's no jokin' matter.

  76. Ahem, I don't recall ever starting any of the ruckus around here. I may be the cause of, which is not my fault, but I don't start anything around here. Sorry.

  77. That is just what it says so no need to feel sorry.

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