Intravenous Caffeine

Totally Unfair and Completely Unbalanced

9 out of 10 economists agree–Revenues Reduce Deficits

Adam Smith is compared to Isaac Newton.

Amazing, Holmes. Elementary, my dear Watson!

Well, it only took about a week to recover from Otakon…and the preparation for same. This year’s biggest anime convention on the East Coast gathered over 31,000 participants–most of whom I didn’t see because I was down in the bowels of the Baltimore Convention Center, plying my wares. Thanks go out to Matthew from the Artists Alley staff for checking with legal about parody status. And thanks to everyone who stopped by my table to admire my art-hi Alanna!–and double thanks to anyone who bought anything!–as well as to my neighbors in the surrounding tables. especially Hooked on Chibis and Lori of Pandora. Lots of other people, too many to name (including a lot whose names I forgot to get–old age :-/)

In the meantime, one national crisis ended–we actually decided to pay our bills–and another began. After months of wrangling over whether or not we’d actually pay the money we owed people, Standard and Poors decided we couldn’t be trusted to actually pay our bills when the invoices arrived. Duh! No brainer there. If you loudly complain about how you’re not going to pay your bills, won’t your landlord get a bit antsy about whether or not you’re going to pay the rent? Same as our landlords. The Chinese.

Of course, we’re incensed that S&P actually downgraded us. Hey, we complained, but we’re paying–aren’t we? And what about that 2 TRILLION dollar error in your calculations? Huh? Hey–aren’t you the guys that said Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers were good risks?

Well, S&P fessed up that this was more of a political decision than an economic one. Ooops, never mind that profit-taking by the bear market over there (I’m sure that THAT was more than a bit of consideration as well). But you can’t fault the political judgment. We spent months in a virtual standstill over whether to pay our bills because a minority in Congress is holding our government to ransom. Give in to our demands or we’ll shoot the dog. Ahh, patriotism!

Buried on page 4 of the S&P apologia–which no one seems to have read besides Louise Hartmann–damn liberals, flaunting their literacy!–”Republicans in the Congress continue to resist any measure that would raise revenues.” Now while this does not actually reference the reason why we were downgraded (to forestall the fish-shaking by the one or two conservatives who might actually read this), but it DOES state why we’re in a deficit crisis. We’re losing money because we refuse to raise taxes, especially to raise taxes on the people who might actually have the money to pay them! What a concept–it’s positively Newtonian in scope. Maybe someone in S&P has actually READ Adam Smith instead of simply bowing at his statue in the halls of Capital.

As long as we are held by this insane up-is-down notion (based on the appropriately named–and discredited–Laffer Curve) that somehow lowering taxes will raise revenues–and by the solemn oaths taken to Grover Norquist, whose avowed goal is to drown government in the bathtub–we’re going to have problems with out-of-control deficits. Unless we cut every government function except the Defense Department–and we’ll have trouble there too as we continue to farm out the legions to the auxiliary barbarian mercenaries (based on the notion that for-profit armies are somehow cheaper than the government-sanctioned one). And we’ll deserve a less-than AAA rating. Hey, I have an idea, why don’t we eliminate the salaries of elected officials as well? That way, only people who could afford to hold office could actually run. We could call them, I don’t know, the nobility?

I’m afraid Paul Krugman is wrong–we’re not going back to the Gilded Age. We’re headed back to feudalism.

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Shorting our future

The \'super-patriots\' prepare to blow up the government.

What would Jesus do? Who's that?

No cartoon next week because I’ll be returning from Otakon and several days of running a table on Artists Alley. I’ve got so much to do, I’ve got to keep this short to.

And speaking of short … I hope that’s the position you’re all holding, because that’s the one the big boys are. Short-selling–in preparation for the biggest manufactured sell-off in history when Standard & Poors downrates the United States thanks to our patriotic tea-partiers in Congress. Why did the deficit become so important after 8 years of Cheney saying “Deficits are not important?” So that THIS bear market can happen on Obama’s watch in the hope that everyone will vote Republican and the lads can feed at the trough again? Au contraire! They never stopped.

What happens after a sell-off? The big buy-back–with the loot gained by going short. So that the top 1% will have even more. They’ve learned their lesson from Ayn Rand’s John Galt really well–if something stands in your way, blow it up. And the something that stands in the way of the Kochs, the Murdochs, the Bushes, the Blankfeins and all the rest? The American people and the American government. And they’ve got the self-appointed super-patriot Tea Partiers to help them!

What’s the difference between a Koch brother and a leech? The leech lets go when it’s full. How many bankers does it take to change a lightbulb. Only one and he can do millions–they’re very good at screwing. What gated community will you never see a banker in? A prison–they’re too big to punish.

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Report from Otakon 2009–How did I twist my neck so hard?

A poor schnook has twisted his head completely around from ogling the scantily clad cosplayers as his doctor wonders how to unwind him.

What happens to old farts at anime conventions

Well, I’ve just returned from Otakon 2009 (Otakon = otaku, Japanese for fan, + con), the biggest anime convention on the East Coast, and I’ve gone for a complete weekend without reading the news–and what a relief THAT is. The only news channel they played continuously at the hotel bar was Fox News (which I saw at breakfast) and the only thing I caught was Fox & Friends, specifically a segment on how the Bible was important to study in American History because after all, the Founding Fathers were all Christians. Naturally, they didn’t suggest that Americans might have to study Montesquieu in American History–the FRENCHMAN who actually devised the blueprint for the three-branch government–not only was he an atheist but he was also French. Did I mention he was French? Or that Madison, Jefferson and even Franklin read him…in French? Anyway, at least I didn’t see the segment on why the Bible was important for studying biology. After all, plants and animals are all mentioned in the Bible…
I went to my first RAVE! Now that might not seem like much to anyone under 30, but for us old farts that’s kind of an accomplishment. For those OTHER 50+ers out there, a rave is a dance where you don’t dance with anyone in particular–unless you’re already hooked up–as much as you dance with everyone at the same time. You need equipment–fluorescent light sticks, poles, swords, rings–and you decorate yourself with these and wave them in the air while you dance–which is basically bouncing up and down. Side to side movement is only for the brave. You can also do light acrobatics with your light sticks–and groups gather around to watch the mini-lightshow people are putting on if they’re any good. Now with everyone bouncing up and down–naturally the floor–on the third floor of the Baltimore Convention Center–goes up and down with you in time to the beat and the bass line, which are the only two things you can actually hear–I swear I heard one bass line using the Darth Vader theme from Star Wars DA DA DA–DUM DADAA–DUMDADAAAAA! Very appropriate at a con. Anyway, yours truly managed to get a blister on his foot from all the walking he’d been doing and threw his back out a bit by favoring his foot (no, not from whipping my neck to gawk at the cosplayers like the poor subject of today’s cartoon–that’s why you bring a camera–for a good EXCUSE to gawk at the cosplayers! Ooo, there was a guy with a stereo camera rig for 3-D photography there, but he didn’t have a card :( phooey, I’d have given him a shout ) and made an interesting discovery. If you stand JUST RIGHT against a metal pillar in the middle of a rave–you can get a nice vibration massage from the beat! Some cute girl in a nurse’s outfit gave me a big hug after the Saturday night rave–A fun time was had by all :D
A few shout-outs–I saw my friends Ananth from Applegeeks.com and Chris Malone from Blue and Blond. HEY GUYS good to run into you again! And a fun little occurrence. I was chatting with Kittyhawk who draws Valkyrie Yuuki–she advertised her cartoon as a FREE WEBCARTOON LOL so I told her so is mine and we exchanged cards. She looked at mine, and her eyes bulged a bit, she looked at my T-shirt — with my screaming caffeine freak matching the card–and then at me and said, “OMG, I’ve seen your cartoon before!” LOL I guess I’m not quite as obscure as I thought–anyway, it was a nice egostroke :) Nice to have met you Kittyhawk and I hope I can give you a little bit more publicity from here!

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