a jim jividen blog

Here's the thing. I'm watching one of these shows on the Cooking Channel featuring food trucks. There's a Scottish expat making fish and chips; in a thick brogue he somewhat wearily explains his irritation with Americans who habitually order a side of tartar sauce: "tartar sauce is basically gherkins." That's this blog. I claim no particular insight, no revelation. If you enjoy the flavor, great, but this blog is basically gherkins.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Weekly Tendown November 13-19 2011

Dear Internet:




That's the Boston Massacre.  Americans took to the streets in 1768 to protest economic oppression and were fired upon by their government.


And that was this week at UC Davis.


And Seattle.



And Portland.

It's Tendown 102.  You can get to 101 here.

1. So, What's a More Likely Proximate Cause?
Paul Ryan, you know, the "sensible" Republican, said that the problem with the American economy is "moral relativism."

Moral relativism has done so much damage to the bottom end of this country, the bottom fifth has been damaged by the culture of moral relativism more than by anything else, I would argue. If you ask me what the biggest problem in America is, I'm not going to tell you debt, deficits, statistics, economics — I'll tell you it's moral relativism.


So, it could be that.  Not enough of a moral compass in the United States, we've lost our ability to declare ideas to be objectively immoral; the congressman is saying that we now view matters of right and wrong as based on opinions as opposed to facts, thereby making us disinclined to make arguments located in morality.

Good tip.

2. This Is Objectively Wrong. Immoral as a Matter of Fact.


3. As is This


4. And This


From Rolling Stone.

Far from creating the trickle-down economics promised by Reagan, the policies pursued by the modern Republican Party are gusher up. Under the leadership of Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the House's radicalized GOP caucus is pushing a predatory agenda for a new gilded age. Every move that Republicans make – whether it's to gut consumer protections, roll back environmental regulations, subsidize giant agribusinesses, abolish health care reform or just drill, baby, drill – is consistent with a single overarching agenda: to enrich the nation's wealthiest individuals and corporations, even if it requires borrowing from China, weakening national security, dismantling Medicare and taxing the middle class. With the nation still mired in the worst financial crisis since the 1930s, Republicans have categorically rejected the one financial policy with a proven record of putting the country back on a more prosperous footing.


5. And This
This study from a German think tank finds that among advanced nations:

-The United States ranks 27th in social justice.
-The United States ranks 29th in poverty prevention.
-The United States ranks 20th in access to education.

6. And This
There's a public school social studies teacher in a Chicago suburb, who is going to lose his job for showing students clips from The Daily Show.

7. And This
Here's a quiz - the right wing constantly argues that government is too:
a. big
b. small

A firm tenet of the right wing is that issues should be decided:
a. in Washington DC, at the federal level.
b. locally

Here's what the right wing Congress passed this week.

Today the House of Representatives debated the controversial “National Right To Carry Reciprocity Act,” which would give people with concealed weapon permits in one state the right to carry their guns to 49 other states, even if it violates local gun restrictions. Proponents of the National Rifle Association-backed bill see it as an easy way to circumvent states that mandate gun training and background checks.






8. And This
Paul Ryan also argued that unlike Europe, the United States is an upwardly mobile society.



9. And This
Last night, Newt Gingrich said the Occupy protesters need to get a job.

Right now, unless something changes, in a month and a half I will have four jobs.  And no health insurance.

If the problem with the country is moral relativism, I'm willing to, on behalf of the left, abandon that position in favor of a moral condemnation of Paul Ryan and the worldview expressed in the policies of the right wing.

10. But Not This!  Some Things Are Moral Goods, Goods I Tells You.
Matt Barkley

USC 38 Oregon 35



The 49ers are 8-1.

That's all for this time.  I'll be back next time.  If there is a next time...

Your pal,

Jim