Glad We've Got Our Priorities Straight

The Pentagon announced yesterday that it was going to build a 40 Acre Prison in Afghanistan next to the existing Bagram Detention Center.

The Pentagon is planning to use $60 million in emergency construction funds this fiscal year to build a complex of 6 to 10 semi-permanent structures resembling Quonset huts, each the size of a football field, a Defense Department official said.

We already have spent more than $50 million maintaining our existing prisons in the war zones. Now we’ve got to build more of them. Never mind that this is just one more effort to avoid the Post-Guantanamo Supreme Court decisions, as Professor David Cole of Georgetown notes.

The administration chose Guantánamo in the first place because it thought it was a law-free zone. Now that the Supreme Court has said that the administration is actually accountable to legal limits at Guantánamo, it is turning to other avenues to avoid accountability.

What struck me was the irony of this story juxtaposed with Bob Herbert’s column about the sorry state of our American High Schools.

At a time when the nation is faced with tough economic challenges at home and ever-increasing competition from abroad, it’s incredible that more is not being done about the poor performance of so many American high schools.

We can’t even keep the kids in school. A third of them drop out. Half of those who remain go on to graduate without the skills for college or a decent job. Someone please tell me how this is a good thing.

America’s high schools are for the most part obsolete, inherently ill equipped to meet the needs of 21st-century students. The system needs to be remade, reinvented.

So while we are busy spending hundreds of millions building prisons in Afghanistan, we can’t figure out how to build a state of the art high school for the 21st Century?

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0 Responses to Glad We've Got Our Priorities Straight

  1. Morgan Warstler says:

    Should we just kill all the bad guys over there instead?

  2. zak says:

    Schooling was set up to feed the pedestrian masses into the industrial complex. You didn’t need to be too smart, you just had to show up and learn to follow regimented schedules and bow to authority. So as industry after industry ships more and more of it’s blue collar jobs overseas, we continue to prepare the average paper-pushing, widget-producing American for jobs that no longer exist.

    To overhaul education, we’d have to admit how and why the system was set up here in the first place.

    The gov’t needs to prove they are bad guys first.

  3. Rick Turner says:

    If we were not over there would we consider them bad guys? And why are bad guys over there our problem?

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  5. Morgan Warstler says:

    Afghanistan? You mean you don’t want to be chasing down Taliban? Looking for Bin Laden?

    Zak, schooling was NOT set up for that. Schooling we simply set up for education – simple stuff – the 3 R’s. then each successive generation, in their own interest of keeping youth from competing with the working class, extending the definition of what it takes to enter the work force. You should read Ishmael & My Ishmael. As to “prove they are bad guys” silly goofy one liners don’t work, you either have something real to say, or well, bleh-

    Rick, we’re over there because they are bad guys. See 9/11. Is it just that you want the money spent on you? What REALLY are you after? Do you simply think that if people are angry with us, there must be a reason? It must be our fault? By definition?

  6. rhb says:

    Face it Jon some people see schools as prisons. Some people prefer to lock up their fears. Some people can not get out of the misconception that we only have two choices, kill or be killed. Some people apparently still buy into the Bush canard that if we don’t kill them over there we will have to die over here. See that’s why “they” attacked us in the first place. They were reading for the big invasion when we beat them to it by rushing into Iraq. Damn we are smart. Now if we could just figure out a way to get them to attack each other then we could pull back and out and they would probably never know we’d gone.

    PS I once risked suspension for wanting to use Pink Floyd’s The Wall in an English class. Thing is when I showed the film the students it was written about and probably for had already left school for the “best of all possible worlds” while the students I had then did see why they should have to figure out what the movie was about. It was school after all not some latchkey friend’s house and we couldn’t pass the bong while sniggering away at all the god damns.

    Until we actually can change our perspective from public school’s required to charter schools of choice we might as well keep on building prisons. The real student learns no matter what because that is what he or she is about. The rest are just there because we need to babysit them while they act out.

    As Biff used to say, we appear to be stuck with our pulse on the finger of the world.

  7. Rick Turner says:

    So why those particular bad guys and not others as bad or worse? To say that we are there because they are bad guys is patently ridiculous, and it’s a lie because if it were a battle between good and bad, we’d be fighting that battle elsewhere first.

    “They” are angry with us for a variety of reasons, some of which have to do with the fact that “we”…the west…have been screwing with them for years, and some (of the reasons) are just beyond our needing to deal with…culture and religion. But if we weren’t over there in their faces they’d probably not be messing with us. And then there is the legitimate war…but that’s not the one in Iraq. Bushco has managed to make millions of Americans believe that Saddam Hussein was connected to and responsible for 9/11. I’d be willing to bet that those millions are much the same group of folks who believe that Obama is a dangerous Muslim, but I do digress…

    My basic point in this and other threads is that we have no right to be over there whether it be for oil or any other reason unless we walk our talk and support human rights everywhere without regard to wanting a piece of the resources of the countries we’re messing with. We don’t need to be there as the money spent being there would be better spent on making us energy self-sufficient. I know you don’t believe that is possible, Morgan, or you’d support that position. But it had better be possible because the earth is going to run out of accessible oil sooner than later, and we as human kind are going to have no choice other than to switch to some other energy sources. Because electricity as a medium for delivering energy is so elastic…the juice can be generated in so many ways; because electricity can be generated at the point of use for many people, making the delivery very efficient (lower line losses); and because there are electrical grids connecting practically everyone in the developed world, electrical juice is going to be the dominant medium of energy delivery and distribution in the short and long term future. Remember, electricity is just a means of delivery, not a source. There are many possible sources.

    We don’t need Arab oil nor wars in the Middle East to develop electrical energy independence. And if we want to be thought of as being the world’s good and fair police force, maybe we should start by fighting for human rights everywhere, not just hiding behind that assertion when the real reason is nouveau imperialism so transparent that everyone sees through it.

  8. Azmanon says:

    Morgan you just convinced me you are looking for answers in the mythical clouds of the mainstream media. Either that or your cynicism is your reigning guiding light. Zak is quite right. If everyone was educated to the point of say, being even mildly “enlightened” in their self-sustained existence, then who would labor for the profiteers or fight senselessly for the masters?

    Look at who funded all the great “education” studies of the early 20th century, Ford, Rockefeller, Carnegie et all… the very people who needed laborers to maintain their place in in the developing world of the “free market”. Without the policies of “dumbing people down”, how is it probable that you turn a nation of inherent individualists, survivalists and self-producers into a race of passive consumers?

    Did you want to be the guy to tell Henry Ford that the citizens are over educated for their role as machines of labor for products that nobody necessarily needed? Do you want to tell George Bush that the average guy doesn’t understand why our “enemy” lives in some strange foreign land (that is still the #1 heroin exporter) and therefore sees no point to join the army?

    The best thing I could imagine for our supposed “enemy” is to enroll them into our public school system for some real life education as I imagine they are far to spoiled in subsidies from US government handouts.

  9. Jon Taplin says:

    Let’s do a thought experiment, based on Rick’s idea. Take the $2 Trillion we will (according to Joe Stiglitz) spend on the Iraq and Afghanistan war. What could we achieve in terms of energy independance with that kind of investment? Could we have giant solar farms in the southwest? Could we have wind farms all over the country? could we have figured out how to store electricity from those facilities? Could we have 100 MPG plug hybrids priced under $20K?

    Of course we could.

  10. BobbyG says:

    Yeah, Jon. See my blog post “0.0143%”


  11. Rick Turner says:

    Jon, my point exactly as I’ve been ranting for months here and privately for years. And it doesn’t even take technological breakthroughs to make a difference. How many BTUs are used each day to heat water that could be heated by the sun in the US. The trouble is that this isn’t sexy technology that’s just out of reach; it’s mundane old technology that looks weird on a roof, and thus would have to get by local zoning ordinances and home owners’ associations…unless, like legal right turns on a red light, it were made A-OK by…gasp…Federal law. Oops! States’ rights again…

    My pal Susie Bright had to fight to get her south facing roof covered in solar panels here in Santa Cruz because her house is an old Victorian in a kind of historic district. She now generates twice as much power as she and her partner use…

    So yes, that two trillion bucks could have gone to flipping the bird to our pals the Saudis, etc….but George & Co. can’t get the oil out of their blood. It’s all they know how to make money on…aside from blood. So George is now warning the Saudis that high oil prices may lead to the US being more interested in alternative energy. The horror of it all! Just keep an eye on India and China; cheap solar panels will come from one or both of those countries within five years.

  12. Morgan Warstler says:

    “Could we have giant solar farms in the southwest? Could we have wind farms all over the country? could we have figured out how to store electricity from those facilities? Could we have 100 MPG plug hybrids priced under $20K?”

    FIRST, it was not $2T – don’t lie. Say the exact budget spent to date, no more no less. I’m serious, to have a discussion, use numbers we can agree on – the number is $10B a month. I know you want to see it as a balloon payment, but for the sake of a real discussion, STOP.

    SECOND, if we had not spent it on the war, we would have had more tax cuts. Republicans ran things, and they are DETERMINED to leave deficits behind – I know it is hard for you to do game analysis and play realistically, but I have proven here over and over, that Republicans deficit spend on purpose. The would be no surplus for you to spend.

    THIRD, don’t be silly, we would have been attacked by terrorists again and again – we have been killing hundreds of thousands of bad baddies.

    Jon, you live in a dream world.


    Don’t be silly – I can tell you the companies where the solar is coming from – it ain’t India and China. It is all right here. Rooting for the US is rooting for them.

  13. Jon Taplin says:

    Morgan- You are the one living in the fantasy world. First off, read Stiglitz’s book , Three Trillion Dollar War This is not fantasy its real economics.

    Second, the Grover Norquist control over the economy you assert, vanished two years ago when you lost both houses of Congress.

    Finally,my thought experiment was not like John McCain’s Fantasy 2013 speech. We’re going to do these things in the next ten years because we are going to get out of the rathole you and your friends created in the mid east and reinvent America.

  14. rhb says:

    So let’s make the schools a part of the solution. Real schools where the subjects taught are what the student and the teacher need to do the job of creating green tech that works. Let’s leave the bookworms to their books and give the majority of the students respect for their brain power and confidence in their skills to create and complete a world for their, and luckily, our future. Take a way the military funds for more super bombers, super bombs, super power posing and place it where it will do the most good.

    Meanwhile, Morgan, since you seem so sure of the bad guys being who they are, maybe you could answer a question for several of my friends and I. We have been trying to come up with the reason for the attack of 9/11. What did the terrorists hope to gain? What was the objective beyond taking down the Towers? Was there really going to be a follow up of an army attacking our shores? Do you think that they realized how we would react and how awesome-ly it would debilitate our resources, bankrupt our country’s financial institutionary, and reveal the idiot in the White House and his friends for the true meglomaniacs they are? Wow! Now that I think about it, if this hadn’t all happened we’d be looking at more than four more years of Republicans. You know what Morgan, you are right, that attack saved us all.

    And Bobby G, great post. I’ll be passing it on for sure.

  15. Hugo says:

    Which raises the interesting question (and count me OUT on the answer): What exactly distinguishes a “state of the art high school” from a “prison”?

  16. Hugo says:

    And hey, Azmanon, dammit. It said HEY! I took money off all them foundations (except Rockefeller, but I’m not too sure) to help screw up the education system—and we did very bloody well what we were paid for, so I don’t see as how you’ve got any grounds for a beef. After all children are born every day, but mortgages are due only once a month…

  17. Rick Turner says:

    Morgan, high priced oil affects the Indians and Chinese more than it does us because they are the ones manufacturing goods and they are the ones looking for double digit GNP growth fueled by manufacturing which is inherently energy hungry. My guess is that one or both of those countries will subsidize their own solar (plus wind, plus more hydro, etc.) energy manufacturing growth in order that they can gain access to non-oil energy sources. Energy is a higher proportion of the cost of goods from India and China than it is for us where labor is the big ticket…though energy is eating in. They are less politically tied to our friends, the Saudis (etc.), and so they are likely to be more open to any and all alternatives. Given their manufacturing bent, it only makes sense that they’ll be making the panels we’ll be buying, no matter who of your fave American companies is doing the designing. But don’t count them out on design, either. That’s the big lie of outsourcing…that we are smarter and that we will retain the intellectual superiority. That’s racist bullshit, and it’s going to be a big wake-up when middle America realizes that they got scammed. You want fries with that, sir?

    Education…whew! The biggest problem here in California is that nobody is willing to deal honestly and effectively with the fact that so many students don’t have decent English skills and their parents do not have a cultural history of scholarship. Yes, I’m talking about the Hispanics here. Many if not most are from poor rural backgrounds where literacy is recent if present at all in the families. Therefore there is little support at home for reading and the kind of intellectual rigor associated with some other identifiable immigrant ethnic groups like Eastern European Jews or Japanese or Chinese. There are real cultural issues that need to be honestly addressed if we are to educate the real school population here in California, and these issues cannot be swept under the rug of political correctness. Good schooling takes good parenting, and if that isn’t happening, then drastic changes need to take place in the schools in order to make up for that lack. But of course, parenting is one of the sacred cows of all times with the rights of inept parents held high. Unfortunately, schools need to be substitute parents in too many cases. Parents shouldn’t have the inalienable right to fuck their kids up.

  18. Jon Taplin says:

    Hugo-I’m not sure today’s High Schools can be distinguished from prisons. Of course I’m not sure the average office worker doesn’t feel equally entrapped. Here’s an interview with Alison Link who works with the “incarcerated”

    “Whenever I conduct workshops with any group, I ask people how free they feel and to rate themselves on a scale of 0 to 100. The responses are usually about the same whether I am talking to people in a correctional facility or at a workplace. I have learned firsthand that some people feel free while behind bars (and use their time in a positive way), yet others feel “locked up” while living in society.”

  19. thegiantsnail says:

    I think it is sadder that we cannot afford to maintain the level of art in the state schools we maintain than the fact that we cannot build a state of the art for the 21st century.

  20. Morgan Warstler says:


    The real profit wrapped around technology (solar and nuke) is heavily weighted to invention and installation/sales… where it should be. Manufacturing in China is where it should be – it is a low paying job. But inventing and installing isn’t.

    I am absolutley after every southern facing roof being covered in solar. BTW, nano is where it is at. But getting there, is still “impossible” and weaponized oil could ruin it for us.

    Again, I love China, but I do wonder about the full growth possibilities of autocratic capitalism. Do I hope they fall down? No, I hope they soar. It makes us bring our “A” game. Yep. Psst! Little hint: The reason no Democrat in this country dares broach the subject of moving taxes past 40%, is because other countries have dropped their rates. Competition has fundamentally altered political-economy forever.


    1. $3T is a daydream. This isn’t dailyKos. Peddle that junk there.

    2. My point exactly. Massive deficits until 2006. If it wasn’t for the war, it was for tax cuts. MAYBE THIS HELPS you understand why I would wish there wasn’t a war. I know we’d have tax rates 10-20% lower across the board, without the war. We can’t even be sure, Dems would have won in 2006.

    3. We gave up that tax break to re-sort the Middle East, so we woulnd’t be attacked by terrorists here at home again, to keep oil from being weaponized. Greenspan said it, and you mis-interpreted it – that’s why I stopped to say hi here. The sad thing is we can’t admit it the war was about oil, the sad thing isn’t that it is a war for oil.

  21. Jon Taplin says:

    Morgan- Your cynicism about our inability to solve our problems, because you think that voters will always opt for tax cuts rather than solutions, is depressing.

  22. Morgan Warstler says:


    The fact that you are a liberal professor who thinks solutions come from government is depressing.

    I’d invite you to go through the process of doing a real budget, no deficits, using only $MAX – you’ll end up not being able to do any big bold initiatives. Even without a war. It wasn’t $3T, it wasn’t $2T.

    But if you stick to the particulars, the REAL can-only-spend-what-you-can-take particulars, we’re talking about needing ALOT of new kinds of government to do half the shit you want done. I don’t mean new government – as in MORE government. I mean you’ve got seriously talk about, focus on what government can’t do and can do. And learn to do more with less.

    A GREAT example is Goolsbee’s automatic tax returns. Another is ending the Dept. of Education, and moving that whole thing to the states.

    But you only mention the spending. And the only cut you seriously want to make is military. Won’t work. Where are the lengthy blogs posts about pushing back retirement to 70+? Where are the numerous blog posts about refactoring medicare?

    I’m much more interested in how we make cuts, not because I’m a libertarian – I HAVE ALREADY AGREED we can assume $MAX – I don’t agree with $MAX, but for discussion purposes, I’ll assume $MAX, because I want to actually see you be fiscally responsible. Yes, I get it, Republican’s aren’t.

    But before you get depressed, do the heavy moral lifting. Which groups get screwed? Who suffers? What can’t you do? What are the boundaries?

  23. Rick Turner says:

    I’m still having a great deal of trouble reconciling libertarian ideals with stealing resources from other countries…and “buying” oil from the trigger end of a gun is stealing. It’s like being carjacked at gunpoint and the robber gets your car but gives you back your wallet…minus the cash.

  24. Morgan Warstler says:

    Rick, I had the problem with war too. Always, always trust the market. No war. Trust the market. I even saw the “market” in American politics, to me it is only natural that the Repubs started deficit spending, so Dems couldn’t buy votes. Yes, I was always trust the market, until two things happened:

    1. I learned about Peak Oil
    2. 9/11

    Until those things happened, I was a straight out anarcho-capitalist. I thought Ron Paul was the greatest thing – 25 years ago. Since then, I don’t care what you call it – theft, realpolitik, nation building, America first, cowboy diplomacy… just be clear, I changed my mind because other nations are MORE EVIL than we are, and they seek MORE POWER than we have. Once you grant that, our actions in Iraq make total sense – yes, they were executed horribly, but the actions make sense.

    Our military action is meant to fight a monopoly on resources so we can get to It infuriates me that environmentalists didn’t use the war to drive their cause. We are dying for oil! Switch now! If they really cared about their cause, they’d have wrapped themselves in the flag and planted War Gardens.

    You don’t think it is odd that you don’t trust the market for simple things, but then in the face of global oblivion, you suddenly trust the market? You BLINDLY say that this country can switch to while oil is $200 a barrel, $300 a barrel, $400 a barrel, with “alternatives become more profitable,” but it isn’t true. $300 a barrel oil doesn’t optimally get us to It’ll take YEARS for tar sands, solar is nowhere near ready. $300 a barrel doesn’t mean Exxon-Mobile makes 35% profit – it means our enemies make $150 MORE per barrel, until we find a host of solutions. Those profits, I want to keep out of our enemies hands.

    The best thing we can do right now, is keep our consumption basically flat, make investments tax credits, and help the Iraqis become the new Saudi Arabia as fast as possible.

    BTW, I’d still like an answer in the other thread.

  25. Jon Taplin says:

    Morgan-So here is where we differ. I say any country with Natural resources has only two objectives:1) Have access to capital to develop the resources. 2) Have a high demand for your product and an open market that allows you to obtain the best price for your product.

    Both of those conditions prevail today. I assure you that was Saddam still inpower today there would be a lot more oil coming out of Iraq and the global price would be a lot lower.

    Chavez for all his bluster is pumping at max and shipping oil to us without interruption.

    As to your other points. As you remember I went through this budget exercise with you a couple of months ago.

    From the comments, it appears that we had some good agreement on the fundamentals.

    What we now need to tackle is the revenue side. We started on the VAT tax ideas, but we now have to look at that in the light of Rick Turner’s notion that we have to plan for a very low growth future in the west, while most of the growth takes place in the countries that need to catch up. In fact we will get to the place where the norm is to keep your car for ten years. Soon

  26. Morgan Warstler says:

    First, it is incredibly telling that you think Saddam would be pumping more oil – as if want of oil is enough to forgive and trust him, but not forgive US. You are crazy. Your priorities are nuts. Chavez is a pig and if we toppled him, I wouldn’t do anything but cheer. If we don’t support Columbia, Obama will have blood on his hands – the blood of Pro-American capitalists – and that is bad blood to spill.

    Next, I disagree fundamentally with low growth.

    I think we are going to see a serious “boom” or “bubble” in, one that lasts 10-20 years – by essentially removing from the tax cycle – no subsidies and no taxes. BTW, we should do the same with health care.

    As an example, I’m long on blimps – all kinds of blimps. I think that solar will make new kinds of new communities possible. Owning a car for 10 years doesn’t sound right either, not in a system where we need to do new versions of electric engines on a hockey stick to get to your 100MPG car.

    That’s the thing – THERE IS NO MORE REVENUE, if you don’t have more growth.

    After you say $200K+ pays 40% – and you don’t raise capital gains taxes, you get to have growth, we know exactly how much money we’re going to take in = $MAX.

    Jon, even if you end the war, $MAX is not enough money to do any of the things you want to do – we are paying 20%+ servicing the debt.

    To be REAL, to have a REAL discussion, it is about what domestic stuff can be cut, done completely differently – there’s NO MORE real tax revenue to get – once we do $MAX. So, within that straight-jacket, what are you going to do?

    How about ending medicare and social security for anyone over the age of 85? 87?

    Raise the retirement age to 72?

    Maybe encourage young couples to have 4+ children?

  27. zak says:

    Morgan, why would you encourage people to have more children? That’s insane. Our planet can’t sustain the 6 billion people on it already. how would people afford having that many children? children are very expensive investments, and consumer debt is already through the roof. Most Family finances couldn’t support a family of six.

  28. Hugo says:

    Oh, zak. Oh dear. Unpack each claim, each assumption—please! (Including the reference to children as “investments”.)

    Yunno, the lexicographers might be watching, and yours just might be the first English Language reference to such and so.

  29. Jon Taplin says:

    Morgan- I was just stating an obvious fact. If Iraqi oil infrastructure wasn’t constantly being blown up by war, it would be pumping more oil.

    Now you want to go to war against Chavez too? You are truly crazy for a fight, son.

    BTW-I’m happy to discuss raising the retirement age, though not to 72.

  30. zak says:

    Social Security is one of the biggest government scams of the 20th century. The government unfortunately neglected to consider that citizen longevity would change over time.

    If we continued to tie longevity with SS benefits, SS would kick in at 81.

  31. JR says:


    1) We ( or Exxon) did overthrow Chavez a few years ago after he proposed nationalizing the oil companies. The Venezuelan people refused to go along with it and he was returned to power. He is quite popular in his country, less so in ours.

    2) There are other solutions to America’s problems than starving government with tax cuts. Government is not the problem. As Eisenhower warned more than 50 years ago the military industrial complex is sucking our treasury dry. We spend billions and billions on useless weapon systems, renegade and unaccountable mercenary armies and no-bid contracts with Haliburton, but cut back on needed services for the majority of Americans. I guess we need to figure out how Lockheed, Boeing and GE can profit from providing human services.

    The more forthright way to reduce the size of government appropriations would be to cut budgets BEFORE taxes are cut. It’s easy to promise (lie) that tax cuts for the rich are affordable and then be forced to cut spending when the truth is revealed.

    It’s an old Republican trick but Americans have finally clued in to this bate and switch.

  32. Morgan Warstler says:

    So many things:

    Jon, it isn’t an obvious fact, you were forgiving Saddam, by claiming what is known in debate as an advantage – more oil output if he was still around. Which means you grant the test standard as valid – we are CORRECT if it leads to more oil. Now the only question is which leads to more oil, more friendly oil. Saddam or us. Let’s be clear – you lost the moral claim.

    Zak, you are such a sweetie. I LOVE that you are just catching on to the SS “scam” – and you use such silly “the government unfortunately neglected” kind of thinking to describe it.

    Let me say this to you CLEARLY, the Dems WERE NOT trying to solve some great problem for the ages when they invent SS – the Dems were BUYING VOTES. They didn’t give a rats ass about you, or me, or the voters, or the future generations – they cared about GAINING POWER they did not deserve – just like right now – just like OBAMA. 50 years from now, you grand-daughter will say, “nationalized healthcare is such a scam,” the “government unfortunately neglected to recognize” we can keep anyone aline forever if we just spent enough money on them.

    Zak, repeat this to yourself until you are sure you know what I am really saying, (don’t skim) there wil be a test – we have entire government agencies not based on worth – but based on POOR Democrat lawyers running for office to gain power over their betters. You see back in history, before there were deficits that you and I get to pay, there were Dems who REALLY wanted to gain national political power – and their WAY, their METHOD was to invent new “positive rights” that they would give to voters – if only they got their god damn vote – they screwed you Zak. Screwed you. SS is just the half of it.

  33. zak says:

    Don’t be patronizing.

    the difference between you and me is that I believe social programming via government can work. We just need to weed out the politicians and elect the activists.

    There is plenty of money in the budget to give America an amazing future, instead of faded glory, it’s just not budgeted very well.

  34. Morgan Warstler says:

    LOL, spoken like a gal with her hand in someone else’s pocket.

    Zak, get a copy of the budget – and really stare at it – you are on the right path – push SS back to 75. Cut Medicare, so there are fewer expensive treatments it will pay for as recipient get older.

    We’re almost at $MAX – the amount the government can tax people before tax receipts go down, so the trick is living within our means.

    Being a responsible activist means actively choosing what to cut, not what to buy. Sorry about that.

  35. Jon Taplin says:

    Morgan- You are patronizing all of us, not just Zak. How about helping out with ideas for truly radical reform for the next administration? Obama needs your help if we’re going to turn this country around. You can’t just sit on the sidelines and throw stink bombs.

  36. Hugo says:

    Jon’s right, Morgan. In my incredibly majestic opinion. But on the other hand, there is so much to be said of stink bombs. Stink bombs are not our foe; they are our friend.

    If only there were time for me to tell you how I stopped worrying and learned to love the bomb…

  37. Morgan Warstler says:


    Jon I am being constructive, I am making you actually do the hard work. Let’s just focus on the cuts – what besides the military gets CUT?

    I’ll keep saying it until you actually say ok Morgan, lets X,Y,Z… and if thats isn’t enough, then let’s cut A,B,C…

    “Americans finally will start working for themselves today rather than for their government masters. This milestone arrives two days later than in 2007, clearly proving that the era of big government is back with a vengeance. May 19 is Friedman Day, when the Massachusetts-based American Institute for Economic Research calculates that citizens finally will have toiled long enough to fund local, state, and federal spending.”

    Jon, you can’t get any more days out of us, you have to cut, belt tighten. That’s what will win the Indie vote – proving thats there’s no new spending on the horizon. Remeber 1992? Same damn deal. Fact is, it stinks – my job is to remind you.

    P.S. Your side just gave us the farm bill.

  38. Another Jon says:

    Red Rover, Red Rover!
    Send Morgan On OVER!!!!


  39. Zhirem says:


    You may as well ask the sun not to shine.

    Blah blah blah, go to DKos to peddle that crap. Excuse me Capt. Ego, but isn’t this *his* blog? Go start one of your own so we can be rid of the kindness and benevolence of your presence. Just leave us sorry bastards to our own devices and go break your arm patting yourself on your back in your own space. You really don’t need to save us, we will die quite happily being delusional to ourselves and oblivious to your sage wisdom about the all-encompassing importance of $MAX, and weaponized oil, and finding the next sorry bastard of a country we are going to take it from, and how if nothing else, you would be our resolute savior if only we could let go of our outdated notions of humanity, truth, justice and honor — and instead fully embrace the capitalist in each of us, allowing our salvation in the form of free market restructuring of our human condition.

    Now, with that said, I have had a business epiphany: Morgan, how much for a clear conscience? Do you have any idea for a price point on that?

    – Zhirem

  40. Morgan Warstler says:

    You are born with a clear conscience, Zhirem. Only your own actions have made you guilty, what have you done that’s sooooo wrong?

    No balanced budget, no peace!

  41. Pingback: the garrison show » 5/21 - the early morning web

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