Just Laugh

What’s the appropriate reaction to the rise of Donald trump today?
Should I be angry or sad, or should I just laugh it all away?
And Bernie Sanders with all those great ideas for tomorrow
If Hillary wins with her mind control, will I drown myself in sorrow?
I’ll Drink pitchers of beer, and stuff my face at the local pizzeria,
I’ll get so worked up about the Clinton machine that it will give me diarrhea,
I’ll get so depressed about Donald Trump and his racist rants,
I’ll get in a fight with some meatheads and probably piss my pants.
Diarrhea and pissing my pants, that’s what the future holds,
Crying and cussing and bitching, as the end of the world unfolds,
But these negative thoughts are filling my mind and there’s only so much space,
So on second thought, I’ll just laugh it off, and keep a smile on my face,

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“This land is my land” the cult of Cliven Bundy theme song

The crazy Bundy kids and friends in the bird sanctuary were finally rounded up. I hope this song did not help inspire the religious fervor, because one of those dudes was killed. I was trying to be sarcastic!

This Land is My Land

       C                       G

As I went walking, that ribbon of highway,

       D                    G

Thats when I found me, a bird sanctuary,

        C                  G

A wildlife refuge, made perfect for me,

D                              G

I’m the kin of the great Cliven Bundy

       

This land is my land, this land is my land,

Cause in Nevada, born the legend of Cliven,

Cause Bundy stood strong, and the feds faltered,

This land was made for me and me.

 

Always carrying an AK 47,

If the feds kill me, I’ll to heaven,

But can I beat them, like father Bundy

Singing, “This land was made for me and me”

 

This land is my land, this land is my land,

Cause in Nevada, born the legend of Cliven,

Cause Bundy stood strong, and the feds faltered,

This land was made for me and me.

It remains to be seen, will the feds falter in court, as the legendary song states? Here is the latest on the Cliven Bundy madness.

 

 

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The Official Donald Trump Jam

You notice whats going on here – The reefercake winter 2016 song vault is being released one song at a time in reverse chronological order…. I had the opportunity to collaborate with the USA Freedom Kids….I hope that Trump doesn’t fund their lawsuit against me – Fair Use I say!

Official Donald Trump Jam

 

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Brooks vs Sargon of AKKAD- death leopards on the beat

Brooks vs Sargon (Episode 1)

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Penises are important today

comparing penis sizes like we did in back in school,
Like a bunch of teenage boys just acting like a fool,
why even have elections, why even have debates?
Have the dude with the biggest schlong be the candidate,
yeah republicans, when you cast your vote
of Length and girth you better take note.
when you choose the candidate who represents you,
remember to consider the volume of their spew.
because penises are so important today.
the sense of impending doom is killing me,
As the democrats rig this thing for Hillary,
secret Emails, the TPP, she is so of full holes,
Trump will schlong her big time, at least that’s what I’m told.
yeah republicans, when you cast your vote
of Length and girth you better take note.
when you choose the candidate who represents you,
remember to consider the volume of their spew.
because penises are so important today.

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O Teddy Cruz

A bit of a backlog here, but I wanted to let the new author’s essay stay on top for a bit…see below.. OH SNAP!!

O Teddy Cruz
O Teddy Cruz
His birth in Calgary!

Now in the USA, he seeks to take command
With Iowa won his stock will riSE,

A Harvard twit is he.
From far and wide,

O Teddy Cruz, the Cuban Huckabee!
Duck Dynasty is a devotee!

He won Iowa and he is the Cuban Huckabee!
O Teddy Cruz, all the hypocrisy!

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OH SNAP! Countering Conservative Hypocrisy about the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

On September 26, 2013, the conservative dominate U.S. Congress passed a Farm Bill which cuts $40 Billion from SNAP over the next 10 years.

The Conservative Principle/Rationale behind these cuts are:
-Reduce debt/deficit

-Reduce Laziness and Government Dependency

-Promote employment

-Eliminate Fraud, Waste, Abuse in Government

Before we examine the current status of SNAP, let’s review is historic purpose and key legislative alterations.

First implemented in 1939, the Food Stamp Program (FSP) was not originally designed to feed the poor. It was instead intended to save our agricultural sector from an impending economic collapse created by huge surpluses of perishable food supply. By purchasing these surpluses and distributing them to the poor, the U.S. government injected demand, rescued this fundamental pillar of our economy, and generated substantial economic stimulus. A secondary outcome just happened to be that poor people could eat.

For decades, the FSP remained relatively stable, covering about 4 million people. Then, in the 1970s, under Presidents Nixon and Ford,  the FSP expanded dramatically via increased rural distribution and eligibility.
-P.L. 91-671 National Eligibility and Work Requirement Standards
-P.L. 93-86 Required States to Expand Services to all Jurisdictions
-P.L. 93-347 Authorized USDA to pay 50% of State Costs

This surge in recipients triggered a backlash in outrage over waste, fraud, and abuse. Subsequently, the Carter Administration passed The Food Stamp Act of 1977, which brought massive savings in reforms by the following mechanisms:
– Established Statutory Income Eligibility Guidelines at the Poverty Level
– Penalized Households whose Heads Voluntarily Quit Jobs
– Restricted Eligibility for Students and Aliens
– Qualifying Stores Must Sell a Substantial Proportion of Staple Foods
– Right to Submit Applications on Day1 – and 30 day Processing Standard

Despite these reforms resulting in an extremely efficient cost per recipient, the overall expansion of FSP into new jurisdictions (primarily central U.S. rural areas) increased the total recipients by 1.5 million, thus increasing the total cost of the program.

To further contain costs (the program was now ~10 billion/yr), President Reagan enacted the following additional reforms:
– Annual rather than Semi-Annual benefit adjustments
– Counted income contributions from non-elderly siblings and parents
– Counted retirement accounts as income
– Increased penalties for those voluntarily leaving the labor force
– Gave states option that beneficiaries prove active job searching

Under these reforms, the number of recipients certainly decreased, but it turns out these were  children and seniors who were now going hungry. This prompted Reagan to re-expand services to children and the elderly, while pairing this with even more severe penalties for non-working adults.

The other reform enacted under Reagan was a transition from paper stamps to EBT. That’s right. Reagan was the one who first allowed poor people to have dignity while using the FSP. But this was not the reason why he transitioned to EBT.

The old paper stamp system was impossible to regulate. Stamps could be sold or traded or used by people who were not the intended recipients. There was also no way of carrying over monthly balances not used by paper stamps (even though the government had already paid the full cost of the stamp). The EBT solved both of these major waste/fraud/abuse issues.

Under President Clinton’s first term, FNP was expanded to cover more children, particularly those from single parents not receiving child support. In his second term, however, Clinton passed one of the largest restrictions on FNP benefits in the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunities Reconciliation Act of 1996. Key components of this bill include:
– Eliminated the vast majority of LEGAL immigrants from eligibility
– Placed 3 month cap on services for unemployed able-bodied adults
– Reduced maximum benefits, and froze minimum benefits
– Enhanced means-testing provisions
– Shifted funding away from food and into employment/training
– Disqualified people with arrest record or drug possession record

Very shortly after this Clinton legislation, however, President Bush and the republican congress passed the Food Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, which made the following key changes to what became referred to as SNAP.
– Reduced payment inaccuracies by improving quality control
– Reduced funding for those employment and training programs
– Expanded LEGAL immigrant eligibility (kids, disabled, 5+ years in U.S)

The overall impact of these collective reforms was the leanest and most cost efficient program in the Federal Government, with 95% payment accuracy and appropriate utilization. At the same time, however, primarily because of increasing income inequality and expansion to legal immigrants, the number of recipients dramatically increased from 17.2 million in 2000, to 29 million by 2008.

Then the economic collapse of 2007-2008 happened.

Enrollment exploded from 29 million to 46 million as waves of Americans suddenly found themselves in abject poverty and in desperate need of a safety net. To keep these people from dying of starvation, SNAP increased in cost from 37 billion/yr in 2008 to 78 billion/yr in 2012. In other words, about the same amount of money that one company, Apple Inc., does not pay in taxes every year.

In response to this cost explosion, President Obama passed further cost containment measures. Chief among these were…

– Reduce admin overhead by monthly payments instead of higher frequency payments

– Disqualifications for recipients caught selling food or using EBT for cash

– Increasing penalties for retailer violations

And that brings us to today. We have ~46 million people using a program with an annual cost around $78 billion. SNAP is objectively one of most efficient per person utilization programs with the least amount of waste/fraud/abuse of virtually any government program. Since it’s inception in 1939, the expansion of recipients can best be attributed to two key mechanisms: 1) Expansion of benefits and qualifications under Republican Presidents, and 2) Increased poverty (thus more people qualifying under fixed terms) during Democratic President’s early office.

This historic review already reveals three major hypocrisies within conservatives. The first hypocrisy is that these supposedly fiscally conservative republicans were actually more instrumental in expanding benefits and qualifications, thus increasing the cost of the program and government spending. The second is that antithetical to what conservative would have you believe, SNAP actually has the least amount of waste/fraud/abuse of any major government social safety net program. The third is that while conservative argue that the EBT should be repealed because it allows recipients to have dignity, Ronald Reagan was actually the President who started the EBT program, because it was and continues to be an essential mechanism in minimizing waste/fraud/abuse.

In regard to the other Republican hypocrisies, first let’s delve into the hypocrisy that SNAP must be cut in order to incentivize employment and reduce laziness and dependency. First of all, I’ve already shown that FSP/SNAP has been reformed to only allow 3 months of benefits for non-working able bodied adults, states are already allowed to require proof of active job searching, and recipients can already be disqualified for arrest or drug possession records.

But these adults only represent a small minority of potential SNAP recipients. The vast majority of recipients aren’t even employable adults. The largest three groups of SNAP recipients are children 44%, disabled 12%, and retired seniors on fixed income 11%. Cutting SNAP for these people does nothing to incentivize work, it merely hurts people with no other means of meeting their most basic needs.

The last major area of hypocrisy (there are many more, but I’m trying to keep this blog post manageable in size) relates to the issue of the debt and the deficit.

On its surface, SNAP appears to be a large government expense contributing to the annual deficit and cumulative debt, but this analysis falls short of understanding the downstream economic impact of people using these benefits. Governmental (CBO, USDA) and non-governmental economic analyses alike are in virtually unanimous agreement that SNAP and unemployment benefits actually result in $1.30 – $1.89 in economic activity and value for every dollar spent. In other words, we not only recoop our expenditure but make an additional $0.30 – 0.89 on the dollar. (Primary data from USDA study and Moody study by Mark Zandi).  It is also well known that (at a population level) SNAP and unemployment benefits actually shorten the time that people are unemployed or in poverty. Of course there will always be individual cases of people using their $129/month in SNAP benefits to stay unemployed and in abject poverty, but the reality is that these people are a rare exception to the rule, and actually tell the exact opposite story from what the program does for our overall population.

Lastly, it is not only hypocritical for conservatives to argue that we should cut SNAP benefits to reduce our deficit (when SNAP is actually instrumental at stimulating economic growth) but it is also disingenuous when there are so many other less economically beneficial / survival-necessary programs to cut. And this is just on the spending side of debt and deficit. There is little to no talk about the revenue side, despite us having the least amount of government revenue in decades. To illustrate just how important the revenue side of this equation is, if just one company, Apple Inc., was required to pay its taxes instead of offshoring or finding loopholes, we would have more than enough revenue to pay for SNAP at it’s current $78 billion/yr cost. (But BTW, should we take actions towards reducing poverty, the cost of the SNAP would decrease because people with a living income would no longer qualify).

And that is the final and most disingenuous point. Rather than cutting SNAP funding, conservative could be focusing their efforts in creating jobs with a living wage (public and private), since this would not only be a boom for our economy, it would also reduce the needed funding for SNAP by lifting people out of poverty. This is the correct approach to shrinking the SNAP program – not by cutting services for elderly, disabled, and children, but by actually lifting people out of poverty so that they no longer qualify for the program.

As ALWAYS

Primum Non Nocere

Hypocratic Oath

Ben, the republican black man

ben the republican black man

This lil diddy is about Ben Carson of course, to the tune of the great song “Puff, the magic dragon”, inspired via twitter

@JimmyReefercake @_michaelbrooks @majorityfm Thanks Comrade Reefercakevilllisten to Glorious majority Report Podcast when I get home

— FREEDOM Liberal (@Communist_Dog) December 18, 2015

AND WITH A GREAT RECEPTION

and request for THE post WAS MADE via facebook.

THATS WHY YOU FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER AND LIKE ME ON FACEBOOK, YOU CAN KEEP UP TYO DATE ON jr AND EVEN CAN GET ME TO DO STUFF!@!

foR THOSE OF YOU WHO DON’T USE FACEBOOK OR TWITTER, JUST LEAVE A COMMENT RIGHT HERE. caps ON!! FULL SPEED AHEAD!

Ben the republican black man, lives in Maryland,
no longer does he chase his mom with a hammer in in his hand,
A famous brain surgeon, he has a blessed life,
no longer tries to stab his friend with a friggin knife

Ben the republican black man, runs for president,
No government experience, but don’t say that he can’t!
Ben, the republican black man, kinda like Herman Cain
Ben is more soft spoken, yet Ben is more insane,

Ben was asked if he was ruthless enough to do the deed
Of slaughtering innocent children, Ben, said, yes indeed!
Bombs Ben orders will inflict death and pain and strife
Yet Ben said the unborn fetus shall have the right to life,

Ben the republican black man, runs for president,
No government experience, but don’t say that he can’t!
A famous brain surgeon, he has a blessed life,
no longer tries to stab his friend with a friggin knife

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ATH Podcast 11-13-15: Ohio Disaster, La Republican, New Temp Tales, and TPP TP

The most action in any 20 minute podcast on earth. We first talk about the failed effort to legalize reefer in Ohio, featuring part of the Captain Marblehead version of “Smoke a Bowl”. Will Cliff Schecter come on the show for 10 minutes to discuss? Next, the La republican song, one of our many majority report tributes. Then we role into the purest Maine comedy sensation with a clip from the newest Temp Tales short movie “Crittah Gittahz II” featuring yours truly. I made it to the big time. Finally look at how fun it is to blog at all the hypocrisy dot com and get a song written about your blog post….inside the making of the TPP TP!

The TPP is not for me?

No, its not a jobs bill, it won’t help us compete with China and it won’t reduce the trade deficit. As Joseph Stiglitz notes during his great interview with Democracy Now this week, the administration’s hypocrisy selling this abomination is boundless.  The TPP is of, by, and for the corporate oligarchy and it will make things much worse for working class Americans…check out the interview, great stuff

Joseph Stiglitz, Democracy Now 10-15