Friday, July 31, 2009

Krugman: Govt. involvement is only reason health care system works at all

Paul Krugman does it again, keeping it simple, stupid. click title of this post for whole story. - sj

Health Care Realities
by Paul Krugman
NY Times
July 30th, 2009

At a recent town hall meeting, a man stood up and told Representative Bob Inglis to “keep your government hands off my Medicare.” The congressman, a Republican from South Carolina, tried to explain that Medicare is already a government program — but the voter, Mr. Inglis said, “wasn’t having any of it.”

It’s a funny story — but it illustrates the extent to which health reform must climb a wall of misinformation. It’s not just that many Americans don’t understand what President Obama is proposing; many people don’t understand the way American health care works right now. They don’t understand, in particular, that getting the government involved in health care wouldn’t be a radical step: the government is already deeply involved, even in private insurance.

And that government involvement is the only reason our system works at all.

The key thing you need to know about health care is that it depends crucially on insurance. You don’t know when or whether you’ll need treatment — but if you do

click here for rest of story

from the mindless-but-kind-of-cool file: Nadine Velazquez tweeted me!

check it out!
(click on screen grab for larger view)

Thursday, July 30, 2009

a funny blog entry by Michael Ian Black

by Michael Ian Black
July 18th, 2009

My Weekend So Far

Did I make gazpacho today? I did. Because I’m finally home and able to do things like make gazpacho. I also made some turkey burgers on the grill and refilled a propane tank. If it sounds like I’m very manly at home, it’s because I am. Set aside the fact that I also fluffed pillows and organized my closet. Those can be manly tasks if they are accompanied by grunts and performed while drinking a Schlitz. Although now that I think about it, gazpacho isn’t a very manly soup, even if you put extra garlic in it, so maybe I’m not as manly as I think. The propane tank was pretty macho, I guess, especially when I was lugging it from my SUV to the grill, so that counts for something.

Regardless, the point is that I am largely finished with television production for a little while, and get to spend some time at home with my family. The weather could not be better, which is why I am inside with the windows closed surfing the internet and blogging.

Some friends from New York are on their way up to my Connecticut mansion with their fantastic, amazing (snotty, ill-behaved) children. Should be fun. We’re going to loll around outside and maybe have a bonfire with s’mores later. Or maybe after the kids go to bed, we’ll decide to swing. Who knows? The point is, I’m grateful to be home.

As for my kids, they are taller than I remember. One of them, whose name escapes me at the moment, has gotten obsessed with the new Wii I bought them out of guilt. When I first bought it, I told them we were going to put a limit on the amount of time they get to play per day. I did not know when I said that, that the limit would turn out to be twenty-three hours a day. When I was a kid, I used to spend pretty much every waking moment on my old Atari system, so I know how he feels. He asked me the other day what my favorite thing to do was when I was a kid. I wanted to say, “masturbate,” but I decided to go with my second favorite thing, which was “play video games.” So I understand his enthusiasm.

Back in my day, there was no concern for the violence in video games. One of the most popular was called “Missile Command,” in which your job was to prevent a nuclear holocaust. The game ended when you failed. So every game of Missile Command ended with six cities decimated by nuclear bombs. Oh well. My son is playing Super Mario Galaxy, and every time I pass him I have to restrain myself from calling him a pussy.

So it’s a good day to be home. Sho and I are going to be on Jimmy Fallon’s show on Tuesday if you want to watch. Should be fun. Also, please don’t forget that our new show “Michael & Michael Have Issues” is on every Wednesday at 10:30 EST. I need the show to succeed because I put the Wii on layaway, and if we get cancelled that’s the first thing that’s going back.

click here for his blog/site

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Torche: the best rock band on Earth right now?

This band rules. Pure and simple. You want rock? Buy Meanderthal, released in 2008. And check out this video below (from 'Meanderthal')! Already, one of my favorite rock records of ALL TIME! I'm off to see them at the First Unitarian Church, here in Philly tonight, with Harvey Milk (another great rock band), who they're currently touring with.

Monday, July 27, 2009

"Hear Ye, Hear Ye! I hereby declare all Birthers should be aborted!"

This is great stuff. Praise jesus for the new technological age, internet, bloggers, and those of us who have just plain ol' had enough. No more espousing your horrendous ideals, or perpetuating your dirty deeds and getting away with it. Someone will be there to call you on it. - sj

Elected Birthers on the Hill
by Mike Stark
University of VA Law Student, a Marine, and a Citizen Journalist
from Huffington Post
July 27th, 2009

Thanks to FireDogLake and Campaign Silo for giving me the opportunity to do this work!

Check out this video: several Republican Congressman tell me they don't believe Barack Obama is an American. Several dodge the question. Others offer weak-tea justifications for kinda-sorta believing Obama is a natural born citizen, Constitutionally fit to hold the office of President of the United States of America. Only one, Trent Franks of Arizona, gives a correct and clear answer, but even he can't help himself from suggesting that Obama is facilitating Jihad and turning America into a socialist state.

Folks, this is what it has come to. The most powerful people in the world -- nationally elected legislators responsible for setting policy for the most powerful country on earth -- are lining up with cuckoo-bat-shit-crazy elements of the lunatic fringe.

And they have to. It's their base.

So... with the Republican Party completely untracked from the rails of sanity...

Have we finally found our answer as to why George Bush got elected twice?

Why we went to war against a nation that hadn't wronged us?

Is it any wonder we can't get sane environmental policies passed?

Is it any wonder we can't get the fundamental rudiments of civil society like health care for all, childhood nutrition and effective anti-poverty measures through Congress?

All of a sudden, bailing out billionaire bankers while dithering on health care reform starts to make sense, doesn't it?

perhaps this assessment best illustrates the differences between men and women

How to impress a woman: Compliment her, kiss her, love her, caress her, support her, stroke her, tease her, comfort her, protect her, hold her, spend money on her, wine and dine her, hug her, listen to her, care for her, stand for her, go to the ends of the earth for her...

How to impress a man: Show up naked. With beer.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

One of my favorite pics of the year so far...

This was a pic Yahoo News posted on July 9th, from the G8 summit (full caption below photo). It was Drudge's feature pic that day, with this caption below it: "Second Stimulus!" Hilarious. I love this pic. Cracks me up. Classic. Check out joker Nicolas Sarozky. I wonder what the young woman looks like. How can you not?

U.S. President Barack Obama (C) and France's President Nicolas Sarkozy (R) take their places with junior G8 delegates for a family photo at the G8 summit in L'Aquila, Italy, July 9, 2009. Leaders of the Group of Eight major industrial nations and the main developing economies are meeting in the central Italian city of L'Aquila until Friday to discuss issues ranging from global economic stimulus to climate change and oil prices. REUTERS/Jason Reed (ITALY POLITICS IMAGES OF THE DAY)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Here's what I'm thinking...

on my mind the last 24 hours...

Michael & Michael Have Issues - Best/Funniest new show on TV. Comedy Central, Wednesdays, 10:30PM. Watch.

I am truly looking forward to the day that George W. Bush, Cheney, Rush, Hannnity, Bill O'Reilley, G. Gordon Liddy, and Pope Ratzinger die. I still can't believe how much fucking damage and death they've inflicted the world with.

They make synthetic lattice in 10 different colors; why not redwood, to match my deck?

Obama needs to keep congress working on universal healthcare, however, he needs to drop the deadline crap. If he continues to tie his presidency to it, he won't win re-election, not to mention, the republicans and will get back a lot of seats in congress. America needs him for a full 8 years. Healthcare is a big, complex, bastardized, fucking mess, with the industry weighing in, corporate lobbyists corrupting the process at every goddamned turn, and we need to take our time with it, to make sure when it's implemented, it has teeth. The republicans gained tremendously, for years and years when the Clinton congress failed at gettign a bill to the Senate, even. We can't repeat that history. Work on it, but take a couple years if necessary. Dont' sell the farm Obama. Oh yeah, I'm all for taxing the fuck out of the rich (until I have lots of money), but that still won't be enough to pay for it. Wait a year or two and see if the economy gets back on track. It will be a much easier sell. If Bush's 8 year abortion never happened, we could implement it immediately, but he decided to not pay for Medicare, and pissed away trillions on bailouts, and an unnecessary war. Fucking asshole.


Speaking of...Is anyone gonna ask Judge Sotomayer what her view is on the women's right to choose, w/ regards to re-productive health and legal abortion? Or have they already and I missed it?

Fuck the Lakers, Fuck the Yankees.

Quote of the week: "enjoy life. it's later than you think."

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

"please, kill me too!"'s what we heard, last weekend, from the shore-house next door, late last saturday night (the 11th), in good ol' OC, MD; a sloppy drunk conversation, where several people were pondering the Steve McNair situation..some dude says this, thoroughly sincere: "I wish some hot young girl loved me enough to kill me."

Here it is again: "I wish some hot young girl loved me enough to kill me."


Thursday, July 9, 2009

More funny from Lee's Steez blog!

funny post from last month on Lee Mazzola's blog, Lee's Steez. - sj

Sunday June 14th, 2009
Mets 6, Yankees 2

Got to spend most of the day with Lee Jr, which was awesome. Had a mild panic attack when the boy almost took a header off the jungle gym at Totlot 116.

The Mz got home around 3pm, and I left for the game soon after. Kinda weird, but I went to the Subway Series myself this year. I guess that's part of being a season ticket holder-- you reserve the right to say "Fuck it, I'm going myself today."

3:27 In the five minutes it took me to walk up to the bus stop I went from "eh, it's not so bad out" to "better put on my jacket" to "Jesus, it's pouring out!" This is the same continuum one follows when listening to any post-Lovesexy Prince album for the first time (from "hey, this is pretty good" to "jeez..." to "turn this fucking shit off!").

3:44 An unbearable stench of unknown origin was present at the 125th St subway stop. People were gagging, covering their noses, and frantically walking around in hopes of getting away from the stink. Either somebody died somewhere or someone was about to.

3:50 A gaggle of tragically underdressed girls got on at 145th, wearing navy blue short shorts and tank tops. They were literally freezing their asses off.

4:09 Took the express elevator up and immediately picked up a cup of Guinness right across from the stairs to my seats. It's a wonderful stadium.

4:10 OK, not the best pour I've ever had, but still hitting the spot.

4:12 Hey, Luis Castillo's leading off!

4:14 Even in the pouring rain, my seats are as dry as Don Henley's snare drum.

4:16 My section is pretty lame: cadavers and Met fans. Seriously, the average age for at least five rows is about 63. Not sure if it makes me feel younger or older.

4:25 TRIVIA #1: Name all the Muslim major leaguers in history.

4:26 This is looking like a long afternoon here. Maybe I should leave right now and catch the 5:00 showing of The Hangover.

4:38 Why hasn't there been a remake of Bachelor Party? Or maybe there has?

4:39 We've certainly lost the intimidation factor here at Yankee Stadium-- it's about as threatening as Epcot Center.

4:41 Two couples just got booted out of their wrong seats, which are right in the middle of the row. The wives had that classic "we sat here because our husbands told us to" look on their faces. The husbands had no look on their faces because they were staring straight down.

4:42 Now this is exactly how I thought Pettitte would pitch this year-- 50+ pitches and still in the 2nd inning.

4:49 God, I can't wait to upgrade my seats.

4:52 NOT EXACTLY TRIVIA: Rank the four major professional team sports in order of average player IQ, from lowest to highest.

4:55 Kinda drunk after just one imperial pint of Guinness. This doesn't bode well for next Friday night.

5:03 I wonder what the most ridiculous name is that they'd actually put up on the giant $100 Yankee Fan Marquee... Karl Dingleberry, perhaps? I gotta try that this year.

5:05 Our billion-dollar stadium allows us to see the lyrics to "I Wanna Rock" on a 5000 sq. foot screen.

5:09 TRIVIA #2: How many players have won World Series as both Yankees and Mets?

5:15 So much for the pristine rest rooms. There's a giant splat of snot and blood on the top of the urinal I'm peeing in (on? into?).

[I decided to go find KumoD and his friend. We watched the rest of the lousy game together and parted ways.]

Monday, July 6, 2009

frustration, anger, hatred, pure madness and high blood pressure...

...just another game of poker.

occasionally there are highs. but they're less than 10% of the time. most people and pros would agree with this ratio. although most pros don't get frustrated and as pissed off as I do, when they play a hand perfectly, their opponent does exactly what you want them to do, and then that opponent catches a miracle on the river and beats you. pros say that's one of the big differences between pros and amateurs in the poker world: pros let it go.

not me. i suffer. boy, do I suffer.

sometimes I don't know why I play this game. What else in life - in ALL of life - can you do everything right, make every "correct" decision, and STILL lose? It makes no fucking sense whatsoever! I know "getting lucky" is literally part of the game, but it still crushes me. it hurts me. FUCK!!! this game is absurd. absolutely absurd.

last week in my local poker league, I won the 23-player person tournament. Sweet. it had been a while, and it was awesome. A great night, I caught great cards, and I played great.

So tonight I sit down after a ton of chores to use my $26 token I won a while back to play a 45-person, full-tilt tournament, where the top 6 finishers, get paid, w/ first place getting $450, 2nd place about $330; 6th place gets about $50.

(if you've never signed up for online poker, DO NOT use full tilt. Use ANY other one instead. I am not a conspiracy-dude, but never have I taken bad beats ANYWHERE like I do on that site. I rue the day I signed up for that piece of shit site).

So, here I am, cruising for a very nice payout, playing great, getting some good cards, all was going great. I was the chip leader from the beginning and it stayed that way, as we went to 35 people, then to 25 people, then to 18. While not chip leader anymore, I was still in great shape. And then, THIS fucking happened:

Full Tilt Poker Game #13245807717: $24 + $2 Sit & Go (98157101), Table 4 - 100/200 - No Limit Hold'em - 22:46:04 ET - 2009/07/06

Seat 2: philliekid (7,840)
Seat 3: Rigged in Riga (4,475)
Seat 5: Konscious (1,975)
Seat 6: spacejace (5,610)
Seat 7: cleansweep34 (3,440)
Seat 8: bahdoo777 (5,655)
Seat 9: pushthemmayway (6,200)
pushthemmayway posts the small blind of 100
philliekid posts the big blind of 200
The button is in seat #8

*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to spacejace [Ad Kd]
Rigged in Riga raises to 500
Konscious has 15 seconds left to act
Konscious folds
spacejace calls 500
cleansweep34 folds
bahdoo777 folds
pushthemmayway folds
philliekid folds

*** FLOP *** [9d 9h Qd]
Rigged in Riga bets 700
spacejace calls 700

*** TURN *** [9d 9h Qd] [Jd]
Rigged in Riga checks
spacejace bets 4,410, and is all in
Rigged in Riga calls 3,275, and is all in
spacejace shows [Ad Kd]
Rigged in Riga shows [Ac Qh]
Uncalled bet of 1,135 returned to spacejace

*** RIVER *** [9d 9h Qd Jd] [Qc]
spacejace shows a flush, Ace high
Rigged in Riga shows a full house, Queens full of Nines
Rigged in Riga wins the pot (9,250) with a full house, Queens full of Nines

*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 9,250 | Rake 0
Board: [9d 9h Qd Jd Qc]
Seat 2: philliekid (big blind) folded before the Flop
Seat 3: Rigged in Riga showed [Ac Qh] and won (9,250) with a full house, Queens full of Nines
Seat 5: Konscious didn't bet (folded)
Seat 6: spacejace showed [Ad Kd] and lost with a flush, Ace high
Seat 7: cleansweep34 didn't bet (folded)
Seat 8: bahdoo777 (button) didn't bet (folded)
Seat 9: pushthemmayway (small blind) folded before the Flop

Riga makes the call after I go all in, post turn, which I want her to make. Why? Because at that exact point, I am a 92% FAVORITE to win the hand. There are 4 cards left in the entire deck - two 9's and two Queens - that will win Riga the hand (an 8% chance of hitting one). You 'kill' for those odds in poker and gambling. I am LOVING Riga's call there, against my nut-flush!

And then, destruction happens. I go from a "chip leader/knocking out an opponent/cruising to cash" mode and mindset, to short-stack, and crippled. Just like that. 92 times out of 100, in that same exact scenario, I win that hand. Simply, this was one of the 8 times I didn't. And like they say, "that's poker!" And it most definitely is. And it sucks, more than it rules. Someday, I'll quit this game for lunatics. I just hope I don't have a heart attack first.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Rush Limbaugh is still a big fat idiot

Does it get any better than this!? This is a truly awesome and inspiring political victory for Democrats, America, and FAUX News/Rush/Hannity/O'Reilly-haters!

Rush Limbaugh is still a big fat idiot
And so are his Fox News pals, who lambasted Sen. Al Franken's "stolen election"
By Joe Conason
Sat July 4th, 2009

It wasn't surprising when, after seven months of legal wrangling, the Minnesota Supreme Court declared that Al Franken had won the 2008 Senate race against incumbent Norm Coleman. Still less surprising (although vastly more entertaining) was the simultaneous breakdown of nearly all of Franken's adversaries on the right, whose regurgitated insults, whining complaints and exploding noggins revealed nothing about him or his victory -- and everything about them.

Upon learning that Franken had prevailed in a unanimous decision by his home state's highest court, the usual suspects on Fox News Channel and in the Limbaugh wasteland of radio immediately threw up a barrage of furious invective. Wasting no time on gracious concessions, they concentrated on two themes. First: Franken himself is wild, spiteful, menacing, bigoted and, most of all, deranged (as must be anyone who voted for him). Second: Franken's ascension to the Senate is tainted by the process, which his opponent insisted on prolonging.

Sadly, the most notorious Franken antagonist, Bill O'Reilly, was absent from the airwaves on the evening of Franken's victory. Demure guest host Monica Crowley seemed bemused by the Minnesota outcome. But Glenn Beck, in his semiliterate way, heaped on enough abuse to keep Billo's fans satisfied for the moment.

click here for rest of story

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

"spacejace, why do you hate freedom?"

So I objected to something our government was doing one day (on facebook), and a buddy weighed in and said, "spacejace, why do you hate freedom?" I laughed and responded, at which point, another friend stated he's been keeping a list of things I hate. Here's his list:

1) Freedom
2) Tradition
3) God
4) Puppy Dogs
5) the Bible
6) Gun Rights
7) Babies
8) Free Enterprise
9) Our Troops
10) Gays
11) God

laughing my ass off...

Al Franken does H. Kissinger and Jesse Ventura. And he beats up Coleman and Pawlenty too!

Al Franken is almost there (to officially winning his state's Senator seat, and dethroning the "not too bright" Coleman)!. He's got the republicans on the ropes. "Dream come true" stuff, baby! Oh yeah: and he's as funny as your best friend!!