March 15, 2005

found your way to heaven, left sadness on earth

* Krugman:

"The argument over Social Security privatization isn't about rival views on how to secure the program's future - even the administration admits that private accounts would do nothing to help the system's finances. It's a debate about what kind of society America should be.

"And it's a debate Republicans appear to be losing, because the public doesn't share their view that it's a good idea to expose middle-class families, whose lives have become steadily riskier over the past few decades, to even more risk. As soon as voters started to realize that private accounts would replace traditional Social Security benefits, not add to them, support for privatization collapsed.
"As it happens, Mr. Lieberman stated clearly what was wrong with the bankruptcy bill: 'It failed to close troubling loopholes that protect wealthy debtors, and yet it deals harshly with average Americans facing unforeseen medical expenses or a sudden military deployment,' making it unfair to 'working Americans who find themselves in dire financial straits through no fault of their own.' A stand against the bill would have merged populism with patriotism, highlighting Democrats' differences with Republicans' vision of America.

"But many Democrats chose not to take that stand. And Mr. Lieberman was among them: his vote against the bill was an empty gesture. On the only vote that opponents of the bill had a chance of winning - a motion to cut off further discussion - he sided with the credit card companies. To be fair, so did 13 other Democrats. But none of the others tried to have it both ways.

"It isn't always bad politics to say things that aren't true and claim to support things you actually oppose: just look at who's running the country. But Democrats who engage in these tactics right now create big problems for a party that has been given a special chance - maybe its last chance - to remind the country of what Democrats stand for, and why."

* Come out and see the caribbean and portions toll at the Black Cat this Thursday, St. Patrick's Day. Doors at 9:30. The Caribbean will then embark on a quick roadtrip up the east coast, playing selections from their just recorded album. They are playing at:

-- Knitting Factory, New York, New York, March 19 10pm

-- AS220, Providence, Rhode Island, March 20

-- Elevens, Northampton, Massachusetts, March 21

-- Zeitgeist Gallery, Cambridge, Massachusetts, March 23

* Radio Free San Francisco
-- By Klipschutz

Rejoice People of Iraq

The President of the United States
has announced he will erect
a prison to be proud of, demolishing
the old with its unreconstructed past.
He never said expressly, precisely,
he will empty the old prison first,
so best stay clear of its iron fist embrace.
(Assumption is the province of the Lord.)
If he says he moves with a swagger
called walking in Texas, our man
who means every last word
he canĂ­t quite pronounce: it is so.
He will build you your own Alamo.

* Very funny commercial, check it out.


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