Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Assclowns of the Year #3

     (Originally, this was to be the top 50 Assclowns of the Year then I scaled it down to the top 25. But I've had so many headaches lately with my publisher Create Space, which is manufacturing problems for me that's preventing me from even getting a galley proof of TATTERDEMALION printed, that I just don't any time for blogging. Add to those needless headaches life ganging up on me all at once and having to take care of annual and biennial obligations without an income. So please accept this normal-sized Assclowns feature, the ten profiles that I barely had time to write since last fall.)
     Living in America these days is like being on a merry-go-round with a nitrous oxide tank attached to it as ride attendant Rob Ford is smoking crack while getting a blow job. This year, we’ve seen a noticeable escalation in the silliness, immaturity, venality, hatred and utter lack of accountability of certain figures who honestly do not know why their pronouncements and actions make them so reviled. And these people just happen to be the wealthiest, most beloved and powerful people on earth. Indeed, if any one year in American history proves we are the prequel for Idiocracy, it would’ve had to be 2013.

      10) Craig Cobb
    Neo Nazi white supremacist Craig Cobb, possibly the most hateful, and hated, man in America, is a caricature, an embittered little old man representing a virtually bygone age that wheezes on only in the withered semi-cadavers of Fred Phelps, Rush Limbaugh and himself. That's why this man is the proverbial gift that keeps on giving, because when you live your life like a politically-incorrect human cartoon, you're going to get hit with the slings and arrows of irony on a nearly daily basis. Cobb first got on the national radar by unsuccessfully trying to establish a white supremacist enclave in Idaho. Last November, when Cobb, after finding out he was 14% African American, according to a DNA test, became himself the target of racism.
     Then, in order to cover up for his buddies (and for his mortal embarrassment at being given the Jim Crow treatment), Cobb went on a faux rampage, shotgun in hand, pretending to go gunning for his neighbors who were harassing him. He was arrested and hit with three terrorism charges because he refused to admit he was the victim of racial discrimination. Maybe Cobb can call the NAACP. Maybe they'll offer him 14% of their legal services.

9) Yahoo

     Last October, Yahoo rudely and arrogantly forced on its users a "feature-rich" "upgrade" to an email program that already worked beautifully. Among the features that richly stud this Gmail-derived turd like undigested corn kernels is the complete disappearance of photo albums, the inability to open attachments and being forced to download them, their inexplicable refusal to allow us to read more than one email at a time and the new font is some irritating bastardization of Comic Sans. In short, Yahoo spent countless millions taking a perfectly functional email client from the 90's and making it slower, less feature-rich and more primitive than ever. In fact, Yahoo's email is so horrible, an internal memo reveals its own employees refuse to use it. Its users are restricted to five "votes", meaning after your fifth complaint, you're cut off. But, hey, it ain't a total loss. Just before this, Yahoo spent another gazillion bazillion dollars to make their new, stupid little logo move and jump around. Yahoo has yet to respond to questions and complaints, not because they're arrogant but because they can't open their emails, either.
     School and workplace shootings are horrible, obviously, but one is mystified why this has yet to happen at Yahoo's engineering department. Yes, the new email is that incredibly bad. Think of the New Coke, Pepsi Clear and Linkin Park's followup album, multiply those by a factor of ten thousand and you'll then have an adequate appreciation of the sheer suckitude of this, the worst of countless horrible internet domain "upgrades" that plagued 2013. 

8) Toronto Mayor Rob Ford
     Imagine Chris Christie on crack and you'd have Toronto Mayor Rob Ford. 
     After a deleted but resurrected video broke last fall of Ford smoking crack cocaine (he'd denied it at first) and that he'd personally bought it, Ford seemed to contritely apologize then, before anyone knew it, this Canadian then appeared on Fox "News" in which he'd inveighed against Obama and the ACA (largely because of this, Bill O'Reilly pronounced him "an OK guy."). SNL thought he was such a joke, they'd lampooned Ford two weeks running (God, it's a shame Chris Farley wasn't still alive). This walking Hindenburg is so out of control and so incompetent the Toronto City Council stripped him of most of his powers. And in the middle of all this, Ford then flew into a rage and nearly bowled over an elderly lady Councilwoman.
     Ford is of some historical importance. Because of him, most disillusioned Americans are, for the first time glad they're not Canadian.

7) Richard Blum & Sen. Dianne Feinstein
     Largely flying under the radar is Richard Blum, the parasitic husband of Senator Dianne Feinstein, who'd made a tidy profit buying up post offices for a song and a dance through some Goldman Sachs-owned real estate firm called CBRE. These revelations, and many more, were the result of a years-long investigation by Peter Byrne, who'd summarized his findings in a little ebook called Going Postal. Feinstein, an entrenched Blue Dog who's vehemently supported the NSA, had also lobbied the Postmaster General to OK deals that, just by coincidence, would've involved her husband's predatory company.
     The story begins in 2006, when the shockingly corrupt 109th Congress passed a bullshit law mandating the postal service pay their pensions 75 years into the future (Meaning, they have to pay the pensions of those who aren't even born, yet). This caused 80% of their deficit so, in order to get cash liquidity, they then gave exclusive rights to buy up Postal Service property to Blum's CBRE. They naively thought they were going to get at least fair market value when they began selling off post offices. Instead, they found themselves dealing with a Bain Capital-like entity that not only snatched up these local post offices for cheap, they also saddled the same entity that gave them these exclusive rights with commission fees reaching up to 6%, further bleeding the USPS, and us, dry. And to rub salt in the wound, they're now engaging in union-busting in nearly 100 locations.
     What eludes me is 1) why does Blum's CBRE have exclusive rights to buy up post offices when the Postal Service hasn't officially been privatized and 2) why had the Postal Service given CBRE exclusive rights in 2011 when they should've known what would happen and where did their authority to do so come from? Whatever the answer, it's been estimated that Blum and Feinstein stand to scarf up a billion dollar slice from the $85 billion postal pie that's being bought and sold through collusive, legally questionable and highly unethical scumbag deals that involves Feinstein abusing her office for her own enrichment. Feinstein needs to be impeached for this and her husband thrown in prison. We should send her her walking papers, C.O.D., of course.

6) The NSA

     From hiring 15 year-old interns to spy on their parents a la 1984 to recruiting internet behemoths to spy on our online activities through XKeyscore to hacking into World of Warcraft and Second Life, snooping on ex-lovers with NSA resources to spying on our own allies, the National Security Agency (aka Nazis Surveil Anyone) had, justifiably, gotten its fair share last year of ink and air time. And the ironic thing is, these out-of-control fascists didn't even need Edward Snowden and Glenn Greenwald for all that bad press. The NSA's chief Keith Alexander said at Black Hat last August that all this butt-fucking of what used to be the 4th amendment is all necessary since it resulted in the NSA foiling 54 terrorist attacks (without, ahem, the general being able to prove the existence of virtually any of them).
     Indeed, it seems these fascist twats are using George Orwell's 1984 as a playbook.

5) CBS

     Substituting South African music for Toto's "Africa" during Nelson Mandela's tribute last month was actually the least egregious of CBS's many crimes against journalism and good taste in 2013. Chiefest among these many journalistic fuckups was a 60 Minutes report on Benghazi that was so deeply flawed and factually compromised it bordered on parody, forcing Lara Logan into a paid leave. Their first mistake was in not vetting Dylan Davies, a security contractor who claimed to be there and to have fought off the Libyan rebels when he wasn't in reality there, as he'd told his employers, the State Dept. and the FBI. But CBS wasn't the only one to short-stroke this sick fantasy of the GOP: CBS-owned Threshold Editions, the right wing imprint of Simon & Schuster, also got punked and gave this lying piece of shit a book deal that they'd rescinded two days after publication. To make matters worse, when CBS put on their version of Curveball, they never disclosed to the public their own right wing imprint was publishing this guy's false chest hair account.
     Meanwhile, Dan Rather, Mary Mapes and three other producers are still fired for correctly reporting on George W. Bush's parttime escapades in 2004 with the Texas Air National Guard and 60 Minutes II, which aired the report, has yet to make a comeback.

4) Richard Cohen
     Last November 11th, the WaPo posted this article by Richard Cohen (who used to be a liberal), supposedly with editorial scrutiny:
"People with conventional views must repress a gag reflex when considering the mayor-elect of New York — a white man married to a black woman and with two biracial children. (Should I mention that Bill de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, used to be a lesbian?)"
     Oh, no, gagging at the thought of the races mixing and mating aren't racist views, they're merely "conventional."  Oh, is that a whine I hear in the background? Oh my, we're lynching him by using his own words against him.

3) McDonald's
     If any US corporation rivaled Walmart last year for sheer corporate avarice, savage cluelessness and for just being out of touch, it would have to be McDonald's. Their McResource website actually said that employees should get on Medicare and food stamps to make ends meet, while providing a sample budget that allows for $0 to be spent on heating and $20 a month for health care. Oh, yeah, the sample budget also stipulated you needed to work two fulltime jobs just to live this frugally.
     Then, last year just before Thanksgiving, McDonald's McResource website suggested, "breaking food" into smaller pieces to give the illusion of being full and returning unopened Xmas gifts. Wait, it actually gets worse. By November, they actually made this page even more hilarious and like something out of the Onion by then giving their minimum wage-earning employees tips on how to give tips. And not just tips to waitstaff but tips to personal fitness trainers, pool cleaners, salon staff and au pairs. The inspiration, blamed on their third party vendor, came from Emily Post, who was writing etiquette books nearly a century ago.
     After media attention and public scrutiny, McDick's finally took down the site, blaming everyone but their rapacious executives for "unwarranted scrutiny and inappropriate comments." No doubt, if it had stayed up much longer, it would've offered suggestions for their $7.25 an hour drones in how to tackle first world problems like setting up offshore accounts in the Grand Caymans and car elevator maintenance.

2) Sarah Palin
     From real life.
     From Idiocracy. 

     I'm sensing more than just a pattern. I'm sensing prescience.

1) Hawaii State Rep. Tom Brower
     Maybe this clown thinks he's the Buford Pusser of the homeless community. Five term State Rep. Tom Brower has put the "trolling" in "patrolling" by marching up and down the streets of Honolulu looking for shopping carts and the possessions of the homeless to smash with his sledgehammer. All of which does nothing toward actually solving the problem of homelessness.
     Oh, by the way, this guy calls himself a Democrat.
     And this local Hawaiian TV station immediately gets it wrong right out of the gate by seriously asking, "Does it help or hurt?" and actually holding a poll to arrive at an answer to a debate that shouldn't even be a debate. So why is it OK to smash and destroy the property of the homeless and Occupy Wall Street while even merely protesting corporate greed has been criminalized?


At February 1, 2014 at 8:12 PM, Anonymous Comrade Rutherford said...

My favorite rendition of Sarah Palin – after the excellent Tina Fey, of course – is the unheard-of-in-the-USA Iron Sky. The premise of this movie is Space Nazi's from the Dark Side of the Moon: A secret Nazi-era Moon Base has been on the moon since 1940, isolated and cut off and no one knows they are there. Until President Sarah Palin, eager for a hook needed for her re-election, unwittingly activates the Moon Nazi's plans to conquer earth.

This scene is where the Moon Nazis are introduced to Sarah Palin and wind up writing her speeches.

This movie is amazingly good for having no budget. It's the kind of movie that could never be made in America, it had to be made by Finns. I highly recommend it because you simply can't believe what they do...


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