Intravenous Caffeine

Totally Unfair and Completely Unbalanced

Returning from the turkey to get the bird

Crony capitalism and cracking down on peaceful protest--Quo vadis, America?

A double helping of caffeine today...quo vadis, America?

So, after finally having digested ALL of the Thanksgiving turkey, we turn once again to a much less edible bird. Earlier this week, we found out that Henry Paulson–you know, former CEO of Vampire-Squid–while he was Secretary of the Treasury–wandered into a meeting with hedge fund managers and told them what Treasury was going to do about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. SAY WHAT? Umm, Hank, that was supposed to be a secret until it happened! Did it not occur to you that someone might possibly engage in some insider trading on the basis of WHAT YOU #$%^&* JUST TOLD THEM? Oh, but these are my buddies–they’d never do anything so illegal, unethical and immoral. Well, most of them anyway.

There we have it, the essence of what ^&*(#$%^& went wrong with our system. We used to think that the Grant and Harding administrations were the poster children for corruption. Well, Bush II certainly gave them a run for their money (so to speak) and the Obama administration is coming up fast along the far turn. Here, pack of foxes, please take care of the hen house–we know that ace chicken stealers are going to be the best as keeping predators away! Other predators, that is!

With that shocking bit of news, did it really come as any surprise when we found out the REAL scale of the bailout? That the Fed SECRETLY loaned banks 7.7 TRILLION DOLLARS at interest rates even lower than they pay their mom and pop customers on bank deposits? And that these banks loaned it back to the government to make a profit on it? Not to worry, they only realized 0.17% profit on it. Right–only 13 BILLION dollars.

And while we found all this out, the cops of various cities have been coordinating attacks on those dirty hippies, rapists, thieves and murderers, as Fox and Friends would have it, at the same time as the Egyptian military has been attacking “pro-democracy demonstrators” in Cairo. You’ve seen the pictures…can you tell the difference? YES–tanks! You’re welcome!

This has gotten the reactionary forces in Congress to get the knickers in a knot. Hey–if the Egyptians can use tanks against their own citizens, WHY CAN’T WE? Why not indeed! So they included in the Defense Authorization bill language authorizing the military to detain terrorist suspects on native soil. Now a lot of people have gotten upset that American citizens might be incarcerated by the military, thrown in some brig and held indefinitely, but let’s ask another question. If the military can go after terrorists–how’s it going to get them? Are Navy SEALS going to be attacking terrorist cells run by my next-door neighbor? What happens if it’s decided that the attack might be too dangerous? Is that a drone I see flying THROUGH MY LIVING ROOM?

Now you might think that this is just paranoia, but consider this: 60 senators thought that this was a $%^&*#$ GOOD IDEA. It was originally 61, but one of them decided it really looked bad. President Obama has threatened a veto. That would make this his 3rd–an average of one a year–tied with Herbert Hoover. You know, the guy who let the banks tell him what to do during the Great Depression.

Why does that give me a headache?

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OK, Time for the Poster Art

Graphic Poster of cop in riot gear pepper-spraying the viewer with the legend “OBEY”

Full-size poster link in text

I’m writing this between AnimeUSA and a funeral for an old dear friend who was a great drummer, Juan Dudley, so I’m going to keep things brief (I always say that and it never comes true). Seems like the cops have been busy busy busy with the pepper spray this week. After the Seattle cops peppersprayed an 84-year old grandma and a pregnant teen, you’d think that someone would have gotten the message to lay off the rough stuff. But this is the new post-9/11 America–who told YOU you could think? Now the net is a-viral with shots of these cops at UC-Davis spraying a bunch of seated protestors with the orange blast with about as much passion as if he was watering the lawn.

Accounts state that he had brandished the can of spray like Thor and his hammer drawn before the incident. A very heroic action against these dangerous terrorists, who were threatening to mat the grass under their butts. Perhaps he was listening to Chris Wallace, Fox News’s poster boy for clueless minion, who’s been trying to get the Corporate Masters’ message out that America is tired of the #occupy movement (at least according to the way he tried to shut up Juan WIlliams from talking about it during the Sunday talking heads roundup). In any case, the incident ended with the cops being told by the protesters that it was time to leave and so they did, dragging their tails behind them–along with the arrested group.

I’m sure that Wallace is right in some ways. Yes, there have been polls that indicate that people are tired of the occupy movement. But we all know that polls can be cooked–ask the right question and you get the answer that you want. And there has never been a law against taking several polls but only publicizing the one that gives the right answers. I suspect that a lot of Fox viewers disagree with the aims of the movement, since Fox paints it as lawless and un-American at every given opportunity.

However, it is true that a lot of Americans have difficulties with the concept of cause-and-effect. People like Newt Gingrich, the stupid person’s idea of what a smart person thinks like according to Paul Krugman. Newt, the latest contender for title of “At least he’s not Mitt” has angrily dismissed the protesters by saying they should get baths and get jobs. He seems to have neglected to notice that one of the things the occupiers are protesting is that THERE ARE NO JOBS. But it’s easy for someone with a job–historian for Freddie Mac?–to tell someone else to get a job when no one is hiring.

Anyway, I’ve decided to add my own effort to the Occupy movement, a graphic poster satirizing the situation. Shepard Fairey-like but done for real instead of photoshopped from photos :D Please use it for free with my permission–just leave on the copyright and ivcaffeine notices. The full file can be downloaded HERE. Right click and download the file, or on Macs, control click and select download.

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This week in appalling…

Students protest the football coaches being suspended--before the end of the season.

After the bowl games, heck, cut 'em loose...

Hey, did you hear about Penn State? They’re leaving the NCAA conference to join NAMBLA (ba-dum-tishhhhhh!) 2000 students rioted because of the firings, suspensions and resignations over the child rape scandal. Hey, we didn’t know this was a Catholic school! (ba-dum!)

In other news, Michelle Bachman thinks that poor people ought to give up two Happy Meals so that rich people don’t have to pay 3% more taxes. Unfortunately, that will wreck the Republican jobs program. Social safety net? We should look to the example of Communist China! They don’t do anything so socialistic!

Happy Veteran’s Day! Mitt Romney thinks you haven’t done enough to serve your country. Let’s privatize the Veteran’s Administration so that you can have the glory of paying American health insurance companies and help them make … even bigger profits. It’s only patriotic.

Waterboarding? Seven out of nine Republican presidential hopefuls agree it isn’t torture. Let’s rehabilitate those Japanese who were hung for it after WWII–oops, they did that against Americans–damn, they should have been drawn and quartered as well!

Berlusconi steps down in Italy–he wants to spend his time helping to defend Herman Cain. I was right last week, more harassment accusations popped up out of Herman’s woodwork. “My wife will tell you–she never heard of any of these things.” Right, Herman.

Last we heard from Rick Perry, he was trying to remember his name. Pick Peary? Rick Rarey? Wait a minute, I almost have it.

Frank Miller thinks the Occupy movement is nothing but hookers and rapists and thieves. Oh, my! Methinks Frank has gotten the United States confused with Sin City… and forgotten about the corruption that pervaded his creation. Things aren’t always black-and-white with splashes of color and good guys aren’t only sweaty, semi-naked men with painted-on muscles, Frank. Oops, that was 300. Maybe Frank is ignoring all those people who have extra time on their hands to protest–because they have no jobs! Perhaps he thinks they can get jobs at McDonald’s? They won’t be hiring–the word is that sales of Happy Meals is expected to go south.

Let’s really get some attention: OCCUPY THE SUPER BOWL!

President Obama killed the tradition of wearing “Aloha” shirts at the APEC summit in Honolulu. “Hey, I’m from Hawaii and even I think those things are awful!”

And finally, Penn State lost its first post-scandal game. Students said, “We knew they should have waited until after the season.”

Next weekend I will be attending AnimeUSA at the Crystal City Hyatt Regency. I’ll be participating in two panels on Saturday, one I will be giving on traditional and digitial inking at some ungodly hour in the morning, and the other I’ll be supporting my friend Alicia at her traditional post-midnight Yuri drawing panel. I’ll be in costume some of the time (courtesy of Alicia), but the rest of the time, I’ll be in my traditional purple “I NEED INTRAVENOUS CAFFEINE” shirt. So say hi, if you see me.

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The Officer was confused–he thought he was in Oakland, Not DC

A DC policeman apologizes for the finish being ruined after a man runs over a pedestrian in his LexusThe Republican Party continues its search for the dumbest candidate that isn’t Mitt Romney–who unfortunately seems to have demonstrated a few brains back when he was governor of Massachusetts, for which the Tea Party refuses to forgive him. Now, of course, the emphasis has shifted to how dumb the constituency is as we try to determine how many people actually believe Herman Cain. Herman, of course, wants everyone to believe that he never sexually harassed those three women–maybe four or five by next week. That’s not the stupid part–the stupid part is that he wants people to take his word for it. “Trust me,” he says. “Trust my wife–she was so upset about the allegations that she can’t come on the TV and tell you how upset she was about the allegations.”

I have no doubt that that’s good enough for some people. After all, lots of people thought that Hermie’s 9-9-9 plan made a lot of sense–especially those whose tax rates would have dropped. And most of them didn’t know who the president of U-beki-beki-beki-beki-(do I have the right number of beki’s?)-stan-stan is either. They also believed that the harassment allegations against Arnold Schwarzeneger were just a lot of hot air too. Cute kid your housekeeper has, Ahnold–kinda looks like you.

But the more important news is in banking. Seems Bank of America decided to relent on its avaricious move to charge a monthly fee for debit cards and the other megabanks are following suit. They and the media are surprised that Occupy Wall Street is still continuing–hey, wasn’t THAT what they wanted? On the other hand, Wells Fargo, candidate for the most evil bank in existence, has decided to open a NEW bank for the super-rich…something called Abbot Downing, named after the church official most likely to have his hand in the till: “The abbey keeps getting these donations and the monks can’t use it, so …” You can bet THEY’RE not getting 0.5% interest on their savings.

Police in various cities have started more repressive measures against the Occupy groups, bolstered by anonymous sources claiming that they are using and selling drugs, having illicit sex, holding cookouts and entertaining substantial rodent populations. In DC over the weekend, a guy in a Lexus struck several protesters whom he claimed had dived in front of his car, so the police let him go without a ticket. The police gave citations to the protesters who’d been taken to the hospital for injuries and then tried to explain the incident as “Drunk Diving.” Without having taken statements from the injured protesters. Obviously, the DC metros think they’re in Oakland. When asked if the motorist had the right to run into protesters, the police spokesman was ummm spokeless. He couldn’t say that guys in Lexuses have more credibility than the people they’d run over, now could he?

Thank God, the finish wasn’t damaged!

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Next–Debtor Prisons for Christmas?

Ah--the 53% speak--don't pay any attention to the guy with his hand up their...

Ah--the 53% speak--don't pay any attention to the guy with his hand up their...

Normally, I’d devote today’s cartoon to a Hallowe’en theme, but frankly, I’m not in the mood. I’ve just had another disastrous car repair bill–on top of more bills, bills, bills than you can shake a stick at. The car’s still at the shop–so I haven’t bought a pumpkin to carve. And yesterday, I managed to lose $50 … in the HOUSE. For the next 12 hours, I couldn’t find it and when I did, it was sitting right out in the open on the bed, where it was conveniently camouflaged by matching the colors on the bedspread. So instead, that gave me plenty of time to read about the latest Republican IDIOCY that they’re hoping will make sense to the yahoos.

The 53%. Ahhh, catchy name! That should make everyone forget about the 99%ers all right. Seems they now want everyone to get mad at all those people who don’t pay ANY income taxes. No, not the huge corporations and multi-billionaires who get REBATES from the government. They want you to get mad at the people who don’t pay any taxes BECAUSE THEY DON’T HAVE A JOB! Or who have one that pays just enough to make KETCHUP PACKET SOUP! How unfair! The Freeloaders! Make them pony up! Yes, sir! That will solve our deficit problem! This latest piece of lunacy is right up there with “Cutting Taxes Raises Revenues” and “Cutting Spending Creates Jobs.”

Now, please, I’m not blaming the 1% for not paying enough taxes. They’re paying what we tell them to. And a lot of the 1 percenters know damn well they’re not being taxed enough and ought to be asked to contribute more. But we’re not going to do it, not as long as there is an obstructing minority who believe that Scrooge’s ideas of how to treat the poor in the first few pages of A Christmas Carol are a F@#$%^& GOOD IDEA! Debtor Prisons! Workhouses for the Destitute! Let’s grind them down with our heels because they deserve it for not having the gumption to inherit their money like we did!

These people claim to love America. They just don’t like AMERICANS. Americans ought to be another exploitable resource and if they want jobs, they ought to be competitive with the Indians and Chinese who we can get to work for pennies a day.

So you see, I’m not really in the Hallowe’en spirit. But I’m getting closer and closer to the Guy Fawkes one. Hey, it’s better than Michael Myers :D

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