Going John Galt broke.

The other day I saw a movie trailer online — “The Education of Charlie Banks.” It features Eva Amurri. Because my memory for celebrity trivia is stickier than it is for, say, math, I know Eva Amurri is Susan Sarandon’s daughter. I thought I’d watch the trailer, see how much of the old block chipped off on Eva. And I learned something else:

Eva Amurri pronounces her name EH-va. I think it’s fair to say most of the other Evas in this country go with the more conventional EVE-a. I think it’s fair to say young Ms. Amurri has spent a large chunk of her life saying, “No, it’s EH-va” to people who mispronounce her name. Using current actuarial tables, if you totaled up all these moments at the end of Ms. Amurri’s life, they’d come to four days.

Now that I’ve driven most of you away…

One of my alma maters (almas mater?) had a layoff earlier in the week. The Columbus Dispatch severed 20 percent of its staff — 45 people. For those of you who are my age, saying, “Oh, well, I’ve been here 20 years, the Grim Reaper isn’t coming for me,” kindly note that Columbus’ reaper came for a great many people my age or older. From the list of “people you may know” passed along to me, I see a couple people who were there when I was there (and I left in 1984), and a few others with much snow on the mountain. Some of these folks will undoubtedly land on their feet — unemployment in Franklin County is fairly low — but it’s safe to assume others won’t, or they’ll land and twist an ankle, or whatever metaphor you prefer.

This is why I chuckle at the current craze among our friends on the right, which they call “going John Galt,” a shout-out to one of the worst-written novels in the English language. The idea is to protest the current legislative proposals by voluntarily reducing their work output. Withdrawing from the workforce. Some call it “depriving the world of my talents,” which is particularly amusing, as it’s usually the most untalented who are calling it that.

I encourage them to do so, even in this dicey labor market, nay, especially in this dicey labor market. A lot of talented people are on the park bench, and would be happy to take your place. Your bluff is called. Go John Galt.

Much work to do, nothing much to write about here. So let’s skip instead to the bloggage:

Another outstanding interactive map from the NYT, showing unemployment by county throughout the U.S. I learned the jobless rate in Mackinac County, Michigan, where a friend of mine lives, is an astonishing 24.2 percent. That’s the December figure, and in that Upper Peninsula county the work is distinctly seasonal. Still, that’s 6.2 higher than the same time last year. My old Hoosier neck of the woods is equally eye-popping — 15.1 percent in LaGrange County, 11.2 in Steuben? Yikes.

When you die, your heirs have no legal obligation to pay your bills. Most people don’t know this, so a debt-collection industry has grown up to take advantage of this. Ah, America.

WDET is rejiggering their programming again, trying to brand themselves with a capital D, and brought back Ann Delisi, a DJ with a legendary local reputation, for a weekend show called “Essential Music.” I’ve written before about never hearing new music anymore, how you have to be a dedicated detective to find anything interesting, unless you have satellite radio, a fondness for certain podcasts, or just more time than I have at any given moment. All this by way of saying I discovered JJ Grey and MOFRO over the weekend, and have been downloading ever since. I’d like to know how long you people have been hiding them from me, and who’s to blame.

Posted at 9:25 am in Movies, Popculch |
 

89 responses to “Going John Galt broke.”

  1. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on March 4, 2009 at 10:18 am

    I’m going to start a repair business on the transmissions of rusty Toyota Corollas, since they seem to be quite in fashion again.

    (But you guys spend lots more time paying attention to Michelle Malkin and Rush Limbaugh than any conservatives i know . . . i do read that sales of Ayn “How do you pronounce that?” Rand have been going up of late. The Libertarian/Randite wing is going to be very noisily rattling cages on both sides of the aisle in the next year.)

  2. Danny said on March 4, 2009 at 10:26 am

    Guys, as I’ve told Nancy and Jeff, I’m a little busy of late, but I just had to pop in on the Rand reference. The single best effect of that book was that it inspired Neil Peart of Rush to write, “2112,” one of the best concept albums … EVER!

    …crap can’t even post without getting interrupted..

    Okay, I was just going to say that 2112 is Atlus Shrugged’s raison d’etre. Oh, and Bert Cooper of “Mad Men” likes it too, but Bert’s kind of a tool.

    Hey, I also read a few years back that Greenspan was a disciple of Rand. Maybe even had an affair with her? Not sure.

    Back to the salt mines. Chat at you all later.

  3. jeff borden said on March 4, 2009 at 10:30 am

    A cruel and heartless high school English teacher required us to read “Atlas Shrugged.” Even at 16 or 17, I thought it was just a horrible book. . .a rant masquerading as a novel. It was clearly aimed at our worst instincts of selfishness and self-regard. That it is held in high esteem by some conservatives is as puzzling to me as L. Ron Hubbard’s lousy sci-fi books being the basis for a religion.

    Sheesh, at this rate, maybe Danielle Steele or Jackie Collins can start a political movement.

  4. Heather said on March 4, 2009 at 10:32 am

    Eva Amurri probably pronounces her name the Italian way, since her father is from Italy.

    Also, did you notice that movie is directed by Fred Durst? Lead singer of the frat-boy testosterone-fueled band Limp Bizkit?

  5. Kirk said on March 4, 2009 at 10:32 am

    It’s all relative, Nance. Latest figures show 7.2% unemployment in Franklin County. Much weeping and so forth around here yesterday.

  6. coozledad said on March 4, 2009 at 10:49 am

    Thanks for the music tip. I was out plumbing the depths of bad music history last night, to see if I could find any mention of my old band. Now I’m being tormented by the ghosts of session musicians past. I didn’t even know one of the guys from “My Three Sons” had vinyl.
    Hey Look. Over there. It’s Bobby Goldsboro!
    http://redtelephone66.blogspot.com/
    It’s almost like visiting Athens, GA in the 80’s. Everyone has a damn band.

  7. MichaelG said on March 4, 2009 at 10:51 am

    My (former) wife is Portuguese from Lisbon and we have one or two people of Hispanic origin here in California. Can’t tell you the last time I heard “Eva” pronounced EVEa. It’s always EH-va in these parts.

  8. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on March 4, 2009 at 10:54 am

    The worst news for those Dispatched is that the slow bleed in media generally over the last five years means all the PR/public affairs/communications department jobs are taken by recent journalistic folk, none of whom are going anywhere soon.

    And you get outside of the Columbus beltway, and we’re looking at effective 10+ percent unemployment the whole ring around.

  9. Steph said on March 4, 2009 at 10:54 am

    One of the comments under TBogg’s post: “No way any of those folks are smart enough to be making $250K a year.”

    I want to know how people so dumb can make so much money to begin with! Sign me up!

  10. Peter said on March 4, 2009 at 10:57 am

    Ayn Rand? Sheesh. That woman must have had quite the hankering for Frank Lloyd Wright, and I don’t even want to know how that worked out.

    I need to do more research on this, which means I put this out for Team Nall to comment on, but the GOP winner in my district’s primary yesterday is one Rosemary Pulido, who I think belongs to the Minutemen Militia, who don’t want Mexicans in our country, but I think Ms. Pulida is Mexican.

    I will say that we (mainly my wife), got a taste of what some of you must go through during election time, and our phone rang off the hook with groups calling us to vote for one candidate or the other. There’s something to be said of living in a solid blue (or red) district – at least you can tune out the rants.

  11. nancy said on March 4, 2009 at 10:58 am

    I thought eye-ties pronounced it Ay-va, like Ava Gardner. Shows what I know.

    Cooze, if you have time, you should really go to Roy Edroso’s old site — alicubi.com — and read his multi-part take on his own band, “The Ballad of the Reverb Motherfuckers.” It’s hilarious.

  12. Danny said on March 4, 2009 at 10:58 am

    Okay, one more important musical reference on another thread topic:

    “The Loco-motion” by Little Eva (EVE-ah).

    If that doesn’t settle how Eva should be pronounced, then I don’t know what will. Don’t go all Marty Feldman on us and start asking us to refer to you as EYE-gore.

  13. alex said on March 4, 2009 at 11:12 am

    Eva is pronounced A-va in Hungarian. And EE-wa in Polish.

    Fortunately for me, none of my American lit profs ever considered Ayn Rand worthy of study or discussion, but I do recall back in the ’80s having Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead foisted on me like religious tracts by pseudo-intellectuals of my acquaintance. I could never get beyond the first few pages.

    I want to know how people so dumb can make so much money to begin with! Sign me up!

    Scum always forms at the top, dear.

  14. Peter said on March 4, 2009 at 11:16 am

    Yipes – IT’S TRUE – I goofed the name – it’s Rosanna, not Rosemary, and she was born in the US of Mexican parents, and you can read more at http://www.chicagoreader.com/pdf/060310/060310_cover.pdf

  15. del said on March 4, 2009 at 11:21 am

    Danny, 2112 is great. Working Man’s my favorite (the fragrance of Afghanistan rewards a long day’s toil). But I’ve never read Ayn Rand, nor would I as I’ve seen what she “inspires” in her loyalists.

    I’ve always liked Ann DeLisi (and not just because her mom and half-brothers were friends of my brother and folks), but I understood fully when WDET (the public radio station) changed its format to bump her music programs and those of Judy Adams and Martin BanDyke in favor of more issue-oriented talk. By that time the Rush Limbaugh Excrement In Broadcasting network had hijacked the local a.m. airwaves and was leading our citizens’ astray. Letting Judy Adams play some Brian Eno music, enjoyable though it was, was like listening to music while Rome burned.

  16. MarkH said on March 4, 2009 at 11:34 am

  17. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 11:36 am

    KCRW podcasts are worth a listen.
    I think Ayn is pronounce EH-n. Maybe not, but I don’t care.

  18. MarkH said on March 4, 2009 at 11:37 am

    Cooze, thanks for that link. That band at the top, Blues Project, brought back a lot of high school memories. Still have two vinyl records of theirs in very good condition. Also an original vinyl album of the band they morphed into, Blood, Sweat and Tears/Child Is Father To The Man. When Al Kooper ran things, pre-David Clayton Thomas.

    BTW, welcome back, Danny.

  19. nancy said on March 4, 2009 at 11:40 am

    Ayn rhymes with “pine,” I think.

    In the Department of Strange Coincidences, the very moment my eyes read “Blues Project” in the previous comment, iTunes threw up “Wake Me, Shake Me.” Sort of spooky.

  20. coozledad said on March 4, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    Nancy: Roy’s band names alone would have made me go see them. “Shaved pigs” is a keeper, too. The closest we ever got to having a humorous name was a one off job where we billed ourselves as “Shamans of the Local Swine”. Turnout was pretty low.

  21. Danny said on March 4, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    Danny, 2112 is great. Working Man’s my favorite (the fragrance of Afghanistan rewards a long day’s toil). But I’ve never read Ayn Rand, nor would I as I’ve seen what she “inspires” in her loyalists.

    Del, I do love “Working Man,” especially on “All the World’s a Stage” (one of my favorite live albums), but the lyric you refer to I believe comes from “A Passage To Bangkok.”

    For the record, I’ve never read Rand either and from what everyone here is saying, I’m glad I have not.

  22. nancy said on March 4, 2009 at 12:13 pm

    At the Majestic here in Detroit, I saw a flyer for a band called Stupid Children With Hammers. I wrote that one down.

  23. Dwight said on March 4, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    I am John Galt.

    Nothing flames the simmering hatred in the bowels of Socialists like a little common sense Objectivism.

    It’s like the way the army used low flying cruise missiles to light up all the Iraqi anti-aircraft batteries during Gulf War I. Merely walk an Objectivist through a room full of folks gathered to (ostensibly) champion tolerance and free expression and watch the Socialist’s threatened, bug-eyed heads spin like Regan MacNeil.

    Socialist: [rolls eyes] “There they go with their personal responsibility bull shit again.”

    Objectivist: “So what’s your counter argument?”

    Socialist: [flicks cuticle which has suddenly pulled their focus] “There they go with their personal responsibility bull shit again.”

    Oooooohkay.

    “Rush is fat! He’s a fat thrice-divorced whoremonger! Druggie! Did you see that stupid black outfit he was wearing? Dumbass. Hate monger. Apologist for corporate greed!”

    “Uh. Sure. But what about his message of the consistent triumph of personal achievement over a socialist nanny state? And the part about ‘that which you tax you get less of (wealth) and that which you subsidize you get more of (welfare)’?”

    “… … Did I mention he’s FAT!?!”

    Oooookay.

  24. ROgirl said on March 4, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    No offense to Judy Adams fans (?), but her removal from WDET was no great loss, especially her annual Jimi Hendrix show. I always liked Martin Bandyke and consider Ann DeL. (his wife) a welcome returnee. When WDET ended their music shows it was a kick in the teeth to many long-time listeners. Maybe someone finally realized that all politics all the time isn’t nirvana.

  25. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 12:25 pm

    Dwight,
    Was John Galt the person who used to through his head back and laugh soundlessly? I got very stuck on that phrase in some Ayn Rand book. She uses is over and over. Are you throwing your head back and laughing soundlessly as you type?

  26. Dwight said on March 4, 2009 at 12:25 pm

    “For the record, I’ve never read Rand either and from what everyone here is saying, I’m glad I have not.”

    And for the record I listen to an hour of Bill Press nearly every day and watch Rachel Maddow two nights a week.

    I’m not afraid that I might stumble into a better idea. But… your mileage may vary. I’m always surprised to hear people proud of their own ignorance.

    If your world view is so shaky that reading a 50 year old book might change your mind… then friend, that doesn’t speak well of your world view.

  27. brian stouder said on March 4, 2009 at 12:25 pm

    I heard an anecdote about dentists (and the like) who will suddenly be making “too much money” and therefore plan on reducing their practice.

    Hmmmm. Why couldn’t they lower their charges, if they’re THAT concerned with paying higher marginal tax rates?

  28. Dwight said on March 4, 2009 at 12:28 pm

    I more of dismissive snigger-er coupled with a slow headshake, Mary.

    But that reads with less visual clarity than throwing my head back and laughing wordlessly. Maybe I’ll try it.

  29. Dwight said on March 4, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    And I think the laugher might have been Harold Rourke from “The Fountainhead,” but I could be wrong. It has been a while since I read either.

  30. coozledad said on March 4, 2009 at 12:32 pm

    And I am Conway Twitty.

  31. del said on March 4, 2009 at 12:40 pm

    Danny, I knew that the lyric was from Passage to Bangkok but preferred to mention the “reward for a long day’s toil” in keeping with the Working Man theme (and in avoidance of Passage to Bangkok’s theme, which rests on, shall we say, matters of leisure).

  32. alex said on March 4, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    If your world view is so shaky that reading a 50 year old book might change your mind… then friend, that doesn’t speak well of your world view.

    So why don’t you pick up Dianetics, Dwight? Chicken? Or just a chicken lawyer?

  33. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    On a grey and grim Wednesday, here’s something to cheer everyone.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5LkDNu8bVU

  34. coozledad said on March 4, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    Dustin Hoffmann flubbing the audition for “Myra Breckinridge”?
    http://www.fanpix.net/picture-gallery/177/341177-ayn-rand-picture.htm

  35. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    Dwight, everyone laughs wordlessly. It’s soundlessly that makes it special.

  36. del said on March 4, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    “but I do recall back in the ’80s having Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead foisted on me like religious tracts by pseudo-intellectuals of my acquaintance.”

    Alex, the same thing happened to me. The guy who pushed it on me also was the first person to tell me that I had to listen to somebody named Rush Limbaugh.

    A few years later the guy’s brother was approached by the Republican party to run against Michigan’s U.S. senator Carl Levin. The strength of his pedigree? He’d appeared on the TV show Survivor and was a popular player who might’ve won had he not been injured by falling into a fire. (Maybe not such a stretch considering that Elizabeth Hasselback has parlayed her Survivor role into more than 15 minutes of fame.) I tuned in once and watched him lead the cast members in prayer. He got them all to hold hands and then had the audacity to thank the Lord for His bounty and for giving him the skill as a hunter to kill the food they were about to eat. When I’d met him years before he was a copier salesman.

  37. ROgirl said on March 4, 2009 at 1:23 pm

    Alan Greenspan was a disciple of Ayn Rand. His previously-held belief in the power of the unregulated market has blown up in all of our faces. And turning Rush into the poster child of the Republican party’s anti-Obama strategy is a brilliant tactic that highlights his pomposity, hypocrisy, enormously inflated ego, and the intellectual nihilism of the Republicans.

  38. Danny said on March 4, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    If your world view is so shaky that reading a 50 year old book might change your mind… then friend, that doesn’t speak well of your world view.

    Dwight, you forget, I am conservative. My objection to Rand here today is based solely on what people are saying about her awful prose style, not necessarily her ideas. Life is too short for poorly written books.

  39. Jason T. said on March 4, 2009 at 1:28 pm

    Coozledad, I’m so glad they decided to go with “Spartacus” instead.

    I just can’t see a dramatic scene in a movie where Roman slaves would stand up and say, “I am Conway Twitty!”

  40. Julie Robinson said on March 4, 2009 at 1:31 pm

    My grandma was an Eh-va and she was of German heritage. Eva, Alda, Alice, Kermit & Floyd were the brothers and sisters. Old timey names are making a comeback, but anyone know kids being named Kermit or Floyd?

  41. MichaelG said on March 4, 2009 at 1:52 pm

    Are you at home today, Mary? I thought you couldn’t watch movies at work. Reason I mention it is I saw what you linked to but I can’t watch it until I get home this Eve-ning.

  42. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 2:01 pm

    I’m at work, but they loosened up on the computers in this office. We are supposed to be going into sites like Facebook and MySpace and LinkedIn to recruit. To let us into those places, the IT guys had to pretty much unblock everything.
    We’re not hiring anyone much right now anyway, so the social networking sites are not much use, but we can watch You Tube.

  43. Joe Kobiela said on March 4, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    I know most of you don’t LISTEN to Rush, but I did hear a bit today, and HE has laid down the gauntlet to Pres Obama to debate him on air at the presidents convenience. Rush offered to fly Obama to Florida on his plane,feed the pres, and put him up at a 5-star hotel, with no expense to the tax payer. So there you have it. a chance for the president to defend his policy’s to the leader of the opposition on 600 radio stations. I hope he takes Rush up on the offer, only one would be left standing then we could get on with the rest of our lives.
    Just one more thing, After reading this blog the last few day’s could anyone show proof that el Rushbo is pedophile or has gone to South America for hookers? Is it written anywhere? or is there video somewhere? I must have missed it, also someone wrote that we need to forget about Uncle Teddy’s drive off the bridge 40 some years ago due to the fact that it happened so long ago. I just wonder if Mary Jo’s family has forgotten.
    Blue sky’s to all,
    Pilot Joe

  44. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 2:19 pm

    Since when do radio hosts get to throw down the gauntlet to the elected leader of the country?

  45. coozledad said on March 4, 2009 at 2:26 pm

    LA Mary: I think it started around the time five or six schizophrenics milling around in front of a Starbucks could be called a populist movement.

  46. mark said on March 4, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    Those who are talking about “going Galt” are almost all owners and employers. To some on this board they are also generally considered to be untalented and “scum.” Those I know who are talking about it to one degree or another include three lawyers, a caterer, an accountant and, yes, a dentist.

    The bad news for that big talent pool waiting on the park bench is that these people didn’t get their jobs by filling out an application and they won’t be replaced that way. Some of them do employ people who filled out an application and got a job, salary, insurance card etc. My friends took on the responsibility of paying for those things.

    If my friends were looking to expand, then there might be reason for the talent pool in the park to perk up. But they are not. Some are talking about reducing employees as a part of, and additional benefit to, going Galt. It reduces costs, risks and headaches.

    The good news for those in the park is they can get off the bench and compete with my friends anytime they want. They simply have to risk their own money, time, family and future to do so, like my friends. But their asses will grow quite sore waiting on the bench for the classified that proclaims: “Entrepenuer wanted, salary and benefits guaranteed, overtime available and highly compensated but not required.”

    It seems to me that Dagny Taggert may be the first true female hero of 20th century American literature. Or perhaps the first depiction of a liberated, modern American woman in an unqualifiedly positive light. Other candidates?

  47. Scout said on March 4, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    There are times I completely disagree with Joan Walsh, but I think she totally nails this one. Here’s an excerpt (2 paragraphs only!):

    >The GOP’s reputation is circling the drain, and President Obama’s approval ratings are at an all-time high, according to a new WSJ-NBC poll. Just under 70 percent of Americans approve of Obama’s performance, while only 19 percent of Americans disapprove, despite GOP obstructionism and loons like Limbaugh fervently wishing he’ll fail. Only 26 percent of those polled have a favorable view of the GOP — an all-time low. Still, terrified Republicans are trying to have it both ways: Keep the divisive Limbaugh on his big white pedestal, while blaming Democrats for saying he’s their party leader.

    But come on: Did Nancy Pelosi make Rep. Phil Gingrey apologize to Limbaugh last month for criticizing him? Did Howard Dean make Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele crawl to Limbaugh exactly 51 minutes (according to “Hardball”) after Limbaugh attacked him on his radio show yesterday, and say he hadn’t meant to call Limbaugh’s behavior “incendiary” or “ugly”? Is Harry Reid the reason it’s impossible to find one, even one, Republican to criticize Limbaugh on the record — without then racing to kiss his ring and apologize?<

    To read the rest: http://www.salon.com/opinion/walsh/politics/2009/03/04/delay_limbaugh/index.html

    It’s ludicrous to suggest that President Obama, a true statesman in every respect, would debate a ridiculous fat-assed, crass, rude jerk like Rush. It has about as much chance of happening as me becoming an astronaut. The president has many more important things to worry about right now.

  48. Sue said on March 4, 2009 at 2:59 pm

    LAMary, you use Facebook to recruit? How? Do you somehow get into individual pages, and if so, how do you find anyone to hire if your company is at all queasy about photos showing drunk young people in various stages of undress? And if your company overlooks all that, can I send you the resumes of about a dozen kids?

  49. moe99 said on March 4, 2009 at 3:10 pm

    Any Hoosiers here think Evan Bayh’s being a wanker?

    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2009/03/centrist-dems-start-rebelling-on-obamas-spending-plans.php#more

  50. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 3:14 pm

    Sue
    Someone, somewhere in this company said we needed to get into the social networking sites to do some sourcing. It has not produced one single hire, or even an application, but someone somewhere is dead pleased that we’ve all entered the world of social networking. I have found my niece’s page and seen the photos of her with her drunk friends somewhere, so that’s something.

  51. brian stouder said on March 4, 2009 at 3:33 pm

    Mary, just last night I surfed around on facebook for the first time EVAH!

    I looked up an ex-wife, old school friends, looked at Nance’s friends – and then that was it.

    Pam said “you should join” (she has a facebook page), but it’s not for me.

    Moe – yes.

  52. coozledad said on March 4, 2009 at 3:37 pm

    There’s a few Galts out here already, bravely riding out the socialist experiment by sucking as hard on the agricultural subsidies tit as their Republican fuckbuddies in the house and senate will allow. I suppose their talent was the cultivation of a few well placed whores. It certainly isn’t one for agriculture. Every time I see the bastards they’re driving up and down the taxpayer funded road to go dress down one of the illegals they employ in the spirit of rugged independence. They’s also mighty fucking fat for the pioneer survivalist life they play at living.
    I suspect when the opportunity to scarf up some more federal dollars actually manifests, all this delusional talk of walking away from it all will cease. And it’s a goddamned shame, too, cause I want to witness the sheer carnage from the Hobbesian war these goobers will carry out against themselves once someone is delegated to clean the composting toilet.
    The resulting story won’t resemble the Fountainhead so much as it will Lord of the motherfucking Flies.

  53. jeff borden said on March 4, 2009 at 3:37 pm

    Pilot Joe,

    Context is everything, my aviator friend. I am the author of said post and noted within that Ted Kennedy had behaved as a craven bastard and should have been indicted for manslaughter. My point to our pally Dwight was simply that this has been a rightwing canard for more than 40 years and it’s stale. I challenged ol’ Dwight to find something a little fresher to rage at, that’s all. I’m sure the Kopechne’s mourn to this day, just as I’m sure Ted Kennedy’s position and power shielded him from any criminal charges. ‘Nuff said.

    It is interesting, though, that my conservative friends can still get their temples throbbing over Chappaquidick, where one jerk senator contributed to the death of one innocent woman, but are mute about the hundreds of thousands of deaths that can be laid at the feet of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and every other enabler who lied us into an unnecessary war with a nation unconnected to 9/11.

    Mark, I’m sorry your friends feel that way, but c’est la vie. It’s nice they can do it when so many others have so very little choice about how or where they earn a living. Bless `em. It’s a free country.

    Me? I’m happy to apply for a job as a census taker. It’s $18 per hour. Big money these days, though the work is short-term and there are no benefits, but a guy’s got to earn some money somehow. And I’ll be more than happy to pay taxes on those earnings because I agree with Oliver Wendell Holmes, that paying taxes is my downpayment on civilization.

    I’d love to have the option of going all John Galt, but it’s not going to happen. I’ll likely be working well into my 70s, thanks to the financial mess that both political parties helped create, and the death of the industry where I worked for more than three decades. But I’ll take great inspiration from those august Americans who chose to do less and earn less rather than pay more taxes as I wipe down tables at Mickey D’s or whatever.

  54. Scout said on March 4, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    Moe – yes.

    Mary – I think the company genius who implemented Facebook as a “recruiting tool” was serving a selfish interest in being able to play at work… and call it work!

  55. Scout said on March 4, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    One more thing. Those would be Galt-ers who are wringing their hankies, clutching their pearls and threatening to become less productive, may not quite have their ducks quite in a row when it comes to the proposed tax structure (again, just two paras):

    >I’ve seen a lot of dumb news reports in my life, but I’m not sure anything can quite match this one from ABC News. The premise of the report is this: Barack Obama plans to raise taxes on people who make more than $250,000, so the reporter has gone and found people who earn a little more than that sum who plan to decrease their income so that they come in underneath the magic line.

    Now, the obvious objection here is that the tax code doesn’t work that way. A tax increase affects the marginal dollar that a person gains. That’s means only every dollar over $250,000 is taxed at a higher rate. Obama is not proposing a tax system whereby somebody who goes from $249,999 to $250,000 suddenly becomes poorer. Nobody has ever enacted a tax hike like that in the history of the United States.<

    http://blogs.tnr.com/tnr/blogs/the_plank/archive/2009/03/03/wealthy-idiots-meet-idiot-reporter.aspx

  56. Sue said on March 4, 2009 at 4:11 pm

    Mark, this question is respectfully asked; I’m not trying to get a rise out of you:
    Those professionals you know who are reducing their workload or quitting their profession entirely – is their objection only taxes, or is it other “government interference”? If they reduce their income in order to pay less in taxes, a higher percentage of their income then has to go toward basic professional maintenance, like keeping up with professional development costs and insurance. Most of those costs are mandated in some way by the government, as a measurable indicator of competence, which these licenses and C.E.U. requirements are meant to do. Is this part of the objection? If they leave the profession entirely with the intention of going back later, when conditions are more favorable, they still have to maintain minimal credentials while out of the loop, and that’s not cheap. And waiting it out and then popping back in can result in a shaky experience level, not even in some cases comparable with new grads who’ve been working with the latest professional equipment, or theories or research. Have they considered that an objection to taxes that is stronger than a commitment to their profession may indicate that the profession might not suffer if they left? Sorry about that last question, but I know professionals too; I’ve never met anyone who would walk away from something they have committed their life to in order to make a point.

  57. Rana said on March 4, 2009 at 4:12 pm

    9.8% unemployment in my county right now, according to the map to which Nancy linked.

    The money I’m earning right now – which amounts to less than 1/20th of the Galties’ – looks pretty good in that context.

  58. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on March 4, 2009 at 4:20 pm

    Wow, when you guys even turn on Evan Bayh . . . i’ll just be over here, nursing a double espresso.

  59. Julie Robinson said on March 4, 2009 at 4:28 pm

    Evan Bayh has been running for President since the day he was born. He thinks the way to achieve his goal is to vote against any tax increases, period. He lived in Indiana, where that worked for him, too long.

    Brian, you looked up AN ex-wife? How many are there?

  60. brian stouder said on March 4, 2009 at 4:39 pm

    psssst – Julie, at the risk of being the sort of person who yaps too much on the internet, let me just say that I was 21 and she was 20, and we were married for about 12 weeks before she met a much, much more interesting person – and that was it! No kids or house or money to divide, show’s over, lights out, that’s it.

    It was my SECOND wife that got complicated…..but Pam was “the charm” – and in fact on March 6 we will arrive at our Sweet Sixteenth anniversary!

    And now you know the ressssst of the story.

    Good DEH!

  61. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on March 4, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    Can’t resist passing this link along, obvious though it is — speaks for me pretty well: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/03/opinion/03brooks.html

  62. brian stouder said on March 4, 2009 at 5:02 pm

    Jeff – thanks for the link. Babbling Brooks I can take or leave, but this link (which I found thanks to yours) is sublime

    http://kalman.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/02/26/in-love-with-a-lincoln/?ex=1251608400&en=1595714c0ecd9ea3&ei=5087&WT.mc_id=OP-D-I-NYT-MOD-MOD-M084-ROS-0309-HDR&WT.mc_ev=click

  63. Joe Kobiela said on March 4, 2009 at 5:15 pm

    Just a quick question.
    If key dems oppose Obama’s tax increases, does that mean they want his policy’s to fail??
    Just wondering.
    Pilot Joe

  64. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 5:33 pm

    Joe
    No. But if they say they want the president to fail, they do. That’s what Rush said.

  65. Kirk said on March 4, 2009 at 5:58 pm

    Radio clowns are best ignored, regardless of their politics. They really hate that.

  66. jcburns said on March 4, 2009 at 6:00 pm

    What-eva. Nice post, Nance. Scary unemployment numbers in places with people I care about. And yet most of them are, in fact, working. So, hmm.

  67. mark said on March 4, 2009 at 6:07 pm

    Sue, Your questions aren’t insulting and I’ll try to answer. But it’s gonna take a few hours to get gack here. Guests for dinner. Mystery ingredient: Asparagus!

  68. Gasman said on March 4, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    Joe,
    Assuming for a moment that it would be a good idea for Obama to debate Limbaugh, why the hell should Obama come to him? Out of basic respect for the office, shouldn’t Limbaugh come to the President of the United States? Could it be because Limbaugh would never agree to any forum that he could not totally control? I believe the last time he did so was during his ill fated TV show, which I described in the last thread. The fact that he would even suggest such logistics as this speaks volumes as to his arrogance.

    What would your take have been if Keith Olbermann or Michael Moore had demanded that President Bush come to them for a debate? For the record, even though I despised Bush, I would have branded such a request inappropriate and egotistical.

    Why would Obama even want to debate Limbaugh? His position within the party is self appointed. He’s received exactly one vote to achieve his office. As our resident Republicans have reminded us yesterday and today, Limbaugh does not officially speak for anyone but himself. So, why now is it appropriate for the POTUS to debate Limbaugh? Is he or is he not the head of the Republican Party?

    Dwight,
    As to making fun of Limbaugh’s gravitational attraction, it is a cheap shot to be sure, but he is despicable and is a large, slow moving target. I’d be just as contemptuous of him were he slim and trim. I just couldn’t address him as Lord Lardass. He is a mean spirited bully and deserves all the opprobrium, and more, that can be heaped upon his swollen head. I feel no pity or shame for mocking his self inflation.

    Of all the media personalities in the history of radio and TV, Limbaugh probably has the highest rate of inaccuracies, errors, and outright lies. I don’t think that he even cares about accuracy at all, he just pulls stuff out of the largest and most available orifice and pronounces it so. His listeners tend to be less than discerning as far as facts go. His recent intentional misrepresentations – no, damn lies – regarding the stimulus package are examples of his mendacity.

    Another even more recent example of Limbaugh’s willful ignorance/arrogance: During his CPAC keynote speech, he was condescendingly admonishing liberals for being unfamiliar with the Constitution. He then displayed his total ignorance of not only the Constitution, but the Declaration of Independence as well by quoting from the preamble to the Constitution concerning, “life, liberty, freedom, and the pursuit of happiness.”

    The man’s inaccuracies are legendary and they are legion. He cannot open his mouth without uttering either gaffs and/or lies. He is so stunningly wrong on nearly every subject, you would think anyone of at least average intelligence would be embarrassed to admit that they listen to him. And yet, there are those who believe anything that issues forth from the Porcine Oracle. Maybe that is an indicator of the average IQ of his dittoheads.

    Why should President Obama debate such an ignoramus?

  69. LA Mary said on March 4, 2009 at 6:40 pm

    Another fine Rush photo:

    http://gawker.com/5164495/rush-limbaugh-challenges-obama-to-talk+off

  70. alex said on March 4, 2009 at 7:39 pm

    Evan Bayh’s a DINO. Which, come to think of it, is an apt term for an old school politician with his finger in the wind and no charisma. The Obama revolution may well make his kind extinct, at least those of them who aspire to the Oval Office.

  71. moe99 said on March 4, 2009 at 8:18 pm

    I don’t seem to recall that the Democrats adhere to the Eleventh Commandment (“thou shalt not speak ill of another fellow party member”). We can crap all over our own, and we do so all the time. It’s the Repubs who are getting messed up by said commandment, because they do not have the discretion or the honesty to point out that their Emperor isn’t wearing any clothes.

  72. Deborah said on March 4, 2009 at 9:15 pm

    Another thing about Rush’s throw down to Obama for a debate. Rush knows that it will never happen so he can say it till the cows come home. As if he’d really want it to happen, he’d be quaking in his boots, crapping his pants. Who is he kidding?

    Regarding Ayn Rand. I read The Fountainhead many years ago, it was just OK, nothing special, I liked the movie better. Somewhere I read that the architect Louis Kahn designed the architectural models that were used in the movie, that Ayn was enthralled with Kahn. But maybe I dreamed that. Architectural trivia you know.

  73. Dexter said on March 4, 2009 at 9:32 pm

    10:00 PM Sunday sees the return of Bryan Cranston as Walter in “Breaking Bad”.
    Just a heads up to the fans…it’s on AMC. I heard Bryan on a satellite radio interview…he’s hoping for a five year run. Aren’t we all?

  74. Linda said on March 4, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    Rush found another way to be in the limelight. That the conservative movement, and the Republican Party, are hurting and looking ridiculous on account of him is o.k. People losing interest and not paying attention to him would be a problem. As long as his base is riled up and listening, he can keep paying his bills. And business has gotten much better for him because Bush is gone. He doesn’t have to keep carrying water for a failure–something he once said out loud he shouldn’t have done. He can just whip on the President, who many in the right now regard as the devil incarnate. He’s got his meal ticket for 4 years. The Republican Party’s problems do not bother or impact him a bit.

  75. beb said on March 4, 2009 at 9:59 pm

    moe99 at 49: I’m an ex-pat Hooise, and definitely Evan Bayh is a wanker. In fact wanker is putting it mildly. He’s not his father’s Democrat. And that people were thinking he might make a good vice-president just a few months ago is frightening.

    Joe Kobiela at 53: They’re not tax increases, they’re Bush’s tax cuts expiring. All that Obama’s doing is letting them expire on schedule.

    Dexter at 73: It’s funny to hear the lead actor in “breaking bad” hoping for a five year run since his character had only months to life at the start of the series.

  76. Joe Kobiela said on March 4, 2009 at 10:59 pm

    LA Mary,
    Rush never said he wanted Obama to fail. He wanted his economic plan to fail if it meant going toward a socialist agenda and the loss of individual freedom. I’am sure everyone on this board wanted Bush not to fail. Beb If your paying more in tax than you did before, it is a tax INCREASE. As far as debating the pres. Why not? If Obama wiped Rush up like you think he would, then Rush would be out of a job and out of your hair forever. Why wouldn’t you want to see that happen? I am also still waiting on the proof that Rush is a hooker buying pedophile like some of you claim.
    Blue sky’s to all
    Pilot Joe

  77. Danny said on March 4, 2009 at 11:29 pm

    I think that this is a very good photo of Rush.

  78. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on March 4, 2009 at 11:34 pm

    5 of America’s finest small to medium size air terminals in three days . . . i’m already feeling queasy. Try not to spend to much time on Rush, or Peart, or nitrous oxide, or . . . ah, just remember the DJIA isn’t the rest of the story.

    Ta.

  79. moe99 said on March 5, 2009 at 12:40 am

    Danny, how can they be so old? I mean we’re not that old, are we????

  80. Gasman said on March 5, 2009 at 1:45 am

    Joe K.,
    The pedophile charges stem from a stag trip that Limbaugh and four male friends made to the Dominican Republic. Upon returning, a Homeland Security Dept. search of Limbaugh’s luggage revealed a prescription, not in Limbaugh’s name, for 29 100 mg tablets of Viagra. The Dominican Republic just so happens to be one of the world’s most popular destinations for customers in the child prostitution trade:

    http://www.worldvision.org/content.nsf/learn/globalissues-stp-FAQs

    The facts concerning his possession of the pills is not contested, even by Limbaugh. The following link contains other links to the original report, a handwritten statement by Limbaugh, and a subsequent affidavit filed by Limbaugh.

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/0706062rush1.html

    Why did Limbaugh need all those Viagra pills in the DR? I suppose he could have been doing his buddies, or male and/or female adult prostitutes, or he could have needed a little help flying solo, but he sure as hell didn’t take a bottle of the little blue pills with him to the DR so he could honor his marriage vows. He was pumping up lil’ Rush for some nefarious purposes. What they were will have to be left to our imaginations. Maybe you can conjure up some wholesome reason for the DR/Viagra scenario. I cannot.

    These are the origins of the pedophile charges. You’ve been offering up a spirited defense of Lord Lardass, and for what possible reason? He is a mean and cowardly bully, a lying sack of shit, a 5 star moron, and quite possibly a child rapist. But go ahead Joe, by all means, defend the loathsome pedophile.

  81. Dexter said on March 5, 2009 at 1:46 am

    Danny mentions Neil Peart at the top this thread. Peart is an interesting man, Hall of Fame drummer, lyricist for Rush, crazy political character, all over the map—accused of being a “Hitler Nazi” , at times called a fascist, calls himself a Libertarian, and spent a lot of time being involved with Ayn Rand’s Objectivism. Still, I can’t bear to listen to his music. It always seemed so much bubblegum to me.
    Williams County, Ohio, home…15.4 unemployment…the local paper lists about twenty jobs available, retail clerk, and 19 truck driver jobs.

  82. Gasman said on March 5, 2009 at 2:15 am

    Joe,
    Show me any post, here or otherwise, where a liberal was wishing for Bush to fail. I haven’t seen any and neither have you. We didn’t want him to fail, we were screaming that he was failing, but W and you apparently weren’t listening.

    If the expiration of the tax cuts for the wealthy is a TAX INCREASE as you maintain, then that is W’s doing, not Obama’s. And please explain, in very detailed terms, how reaching the intended time limit on the cuts equals an increase? If W wanted it to be permanent, why didn’t he make it so from the beginning?

    As for the fictional Limbaugh/Obama debate you state, ” If Obama wiped Rush up like you think he would, then Rush would be out of a job and out of your hair forever. Why wouldn’t you want to see that happen?”

    So, if I understand you correctly, you are saying that if Limbaugh clearly lost such a contest he would voluntarily retire from public life in perpetuity? Did Limbaugh say that? Under what possible conditions do you see Limbaugh admitting to being bested by anyone, at anything? Is there a precedent for such humility from the Corpulent Pervert?

  83. Dexter said on March 5, 2009 at 2:42 am

    The “Breaking Bad” marathon of season one begins Friday at 8:00…starting with the pilot.
    http://blogs.amctv.com/breaking-bad/2009/03/ultimate-fan-quiz.php

    This quiz is a bear! I missed 4 answers.

  84. Linda said on March 5, 2009 at 7:41 am

    If W wanted it (the tax breaks) to be permanent, why didn’t he make it so from the beginning?

    Because he made a lot of budget projections past ’10 in which the budget deficit closes, and they were predicated on the idea that those breaks would end. However, he had no intention of actually ending them; it was just a stupid budget projection trick.

  85. mark said on March 5, 2009 at 9:44 am

    sue,

    Sorry so late with this. First, only one of the five (the caterer) has spoken (to me) of actually shutting down. The others spoke of ending or reducing their efforts to make more money. I think they all make in the 200K to 400K range somewhat reliably, excepting the caterer, who reports wide swings in income.

    I don’t know if their objections are only taxes. I have discussed with them the tax issue in connection with the additional effort and risk they assume to make each additional dollar. And the discussions were not solely to the anticipated income tax rate increase, but the removal of the income cap for social security contributions (all are self-employed), phasing out of charitable, mortgage and other deductions, increase in investment income tax rate (dividend and capital gains) for high income workers, anticipated increases in unemployment tax rate if Indiana expands its program as required to take the stimulus funds, etc. None of this is written in stone, yet, but the discussed increases are more than 3 or 4 percent at the margin.

    The dentist was most advanced in his plans. He has always employed a second dentist, providing a spot and training for somebody newly licensed. He has ended this practice, allowing him to also drop one and a half office employees. While not something I agree with, he claims toi be increasing the amount of work he does for barter or cash payment. Dentists apparently have lots of opportunities to cheat the system.

    The lawyers are all ending their expansion plans. Based on my experience, the lawyers overhead runs about 50% of gross receipts- at least for those with staff and a significant practice. This pays mainly salaries and benefits, plus rent, supplies, insurance, etc. These lawyers all work 50+ hour weeks.

    They are questioning whether it makes sense to invest additional scarce hours, and assume obligations and risk from hiring more employees, for an increasingly small percentage of the extra revenue generated. Even with more work and more employees, the nature of their practices requires greater time to manage people, payroll, outside contractors, etc.

    Under the various proposals being floated, and even with Indiana having relatively low state and local income tax rates, they are calculating that the net to them ,after tax, from an extra gross receipts of 100K, will be as little as 20K. (100K – 50K overhead = 50K – 55-60% marginal tax rate from all sources).

    Nobody that I have spoken with is talking about leaving a profession to make a point. They are talking about downscaling their efforts because the return may be makedly lower, even before you factor in quality of life issues, increased pressure, increased employee issues, risk of failure, clients who don’t pay, etc.

    I hope this is at least a partial answer. The point I was trying to make is that salaried employees who receive raises to do essentially the same work under the same conditions ARE NOT going to turn it down or quit even if they only net 10 cents off each marginal dollar. It’s still more for doing essentially the same thing. But for many if not most small businesses, the marginal extra dollars require increases of effort and risk on the part of the owner. As the net reward for that effort and risk goes down, so does the willingness to undertake it.

    And the jobs these people provide are generally good jobs with excellent benefits.

  86. Dorothy said on March 5, 2009 at 10:15 am

  87. LA Mary said on March 5, 2009 at 12:33 pm

    Mark, I hire medical staff, and whenever I post a position that could be filled by someone who is currently working in a doctor’s office, I get lots of applicants. This is because they get either zero or crap benefits from doctor’s offices.

  88. Scout said on March 5, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    I recently heard the phrase, “frugal is the new black.” Many professionals I know have said that the economic climate has made them take a second look at their acquisitive lifestyles, with the result being a voluntary dialing back from the materialistic and toward a more spiritual and simple lifestyle. It may be that we are actually evolving a bit as a species. But I guess results may vary depending on the company one keeps.

  89. terry shook said on May 19, 2009 at 11:36 am

    Worst-written novel in the english language? are you kidding? why don’t you do the world a favor and deprive us of your “talent”.