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The Velveteen Ocelot

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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Minnesota
Member since: Sun Oct 26, 2003, 11:54 PM
Number of posts: 66,204

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How embarrassing.

"OK, Mr. President, here's how it works. See this card? This is Jimmy. Jimmy lives in America and he builds cars. This card here is a picture of the cars Jimmy builds. Jimmy would like to sell more cars, but some mean people in Germany send their hoity-toity cars, like the BMW on this next card, to America and sometimes people buy them instead of Jimmy's cars. Isn't that terrible?

So what you do, Mr. President, to make Jimmy happy, is put a tariff on those nasty German cars when those nasty Germans send them to America! Do you know what a tariff is? It's a kind of a tax that makes those cars more expensive, and then people would buy Jimmy's cars instead. Isn't that nice? Here's a picture of Angela Merkel. She looks sad because those tariffs make Americans buy fewer German cars.

What is mean, sad Angela going to do? Why, she gets together with her friends at the EU and they do tariffs on things they import from America! Here's a picture of a soybean. And here's a picture of natural gas. There's nothing on the card because you can't see natural gas. But now, because of these tariffs, America's soy beans and natural gas are more expensive and the Europe people won't buy them. Farmers in America - here is a picture of a farmer - will be sad even though Jimmy the car maker is happy."

"What are you going to do now? Here is a quiz. You have 10 minutes to answer the questions."

1. If there are more farmers than car manufacturers in America, will you lift the car tariffs? What if there are more car manufacturers than farmers?

2. If the car tariffs make Angela Merkel sad, will you keep them even if Ivanka wants to buy an Audi?

3. Do you think Russian cars should be included in the tariffs? Why or why not?

4. Would you consider funding technology that would make it possible to make cars out of soy beans?

5. Beans cause gas. Should soy beans be used to make natural gas?


"Time's up... Oh, didn't you answer any of them? Would you like to look at the cards again?"

Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Thu Jul 26, 2018, 07:52 PM (0 replies)

At the bottom of his damned and blasted soul he must be miserable

because he spends all his time and energy trying to make himself feel good. He doesn't seem to enjoy anything except maybe golf, and the reason he likes golf is probably because he owns the golf courses and can get away with cheating and driving on the greens when nobody else can. He doesn't have any other hobbies; he doesn't go to concerts or plays or art galleries or museums or sports events; he doesn't swim or hunt or fish or sail or hike or dance or sing or play an instrument or paint or garden or play with his son or grandkids or read for fun or just sit outside and look at the flowers and the clouds. He doesn't have fun. He doesn't have a pet. He doesn't seem to love anybody. His whole life is about trying to better than everybody else in all ways so as to impress the rest of the world. Because that's impossible he'll always be unhappy. I'd feel sorry for him if he weren't such a vicious, destructive asshole.
Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Tue Jul 17, 2018, 09:15 PM (1 replies)

They want to resist and obstruct your treason, you maggot.

Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Mon Jul 16, 2018, 10:27 AM (1 replies)

I don't understand why you guys keep arguing about this stuff.

Religions and religious organizations are human creations that are only as good or as bad as the people comprising them. There have been obnoxious and destructive fundamentalist religious leaders like Franklin Graham, Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, but there were and are leaders like Martin Luther King, the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu. The black churches, led by MLK and other pastors, were enormous forces in the civil rights movement. Desmond Tutu was instrumental in furthering the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa. The Dalai Lama has been working for autonomy for Tibet since the '50s. Religions, which are far from a single monolithic belief system, can be a force for good or a force for evil; they can be very liberal or very conservative. Most importantly, we are all free to believe of not to believe. For my part, I'm an agnostic. I don't know whether there's a god and it doesn't bother me that I don't know. I care not at all what others believe (and therefore see little value in arguing whether there is or is not a supreme being, or whether people who believe in one are stupid and superstitious, or whether people who do not believe in one are arrogant and supercilious). I care only that it is not made the basis for legislation in our intentionally secular democracy, and that it is not used to justify hurting people. Beyond that, believe what you want, or not. It's just that nobody is ever going to convince or convert anybody by grumbling on an internet message board. That includes me, both as grumbler and grumblee.
Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Tue Mar 27, 2018, 05:31 PM (2 replies)

Any or all of the above, or some combination, would work for me.

My favorite fate-of-Trump fantasy has him dead broke and living alone in a run-down double-wide in a seedy trailer park somewhere in, say, Nebraska, where it gets very hot in the summer, cold in the winter, and is susceptible to tornadoes. He spends his days sitting on the steps of his humble home drinking diet Pepsi, eating KFC and railing about the injustices done to him. He has become dangerously obese; his old clothes no longer fit so most of the time he wears XXX-L sweat pants and a stained wife-beater undershirt adorned with a six-foot-long red polyester necktie. Because he is no longer able to manage his hairdo, his fringe of stringy, now-gray hair hangs almost to his shoulders, revealing his shiny, blotchy scalp. His neck wattles obscure his actual neck almost entirely.

He is living off proceeds from the sale of some items of personal property that Melania missed when she cleaned out the New York apartment and took off for Slovenia; these included several sets of monogrammed gold cufflinks and a roomful of dictator-Baroque gilded chairs. He kept the throniest-looking chair to sit in at night while he watches Fox News on a small, very old tv with a coat hanger for an antenna, hoping Sean Hannity will mention him. He never does. Don Jr. sometimes writes to him from prison but the rest of his family is in Brazil, which does not have an extradition treaty with the U.S., and he hasn't heard from them in months.

He wonders what he will do when he has sold the last set of cufflinks. The pawn shop owner is not very generous, and the only collectors who might be interested are those unemployed neckbeards who live in their parents' basements and collect knockoff Nazi memorabilia.

Sometimes he waddles over to the neighbors' trash bins and pokes around in them with a stick, never with his little hands, hoping to find a copy of the New York Times or the Washington Post that might have an article about him. He wonders if Maggie Haberman still writes about him. Since his neighbors do not subscribe to these newspapers, he is able to imagine that his name still appears in them from time to time. Sometimes he finds uneaten French fries in the bins, which is a nice bonus when it happens, but most of the time the neighbors chase him away.

The worst thing of all is that Vladimir Putin no longer takes his calls.

Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Sun Feb 4, 2018, 11:32 AM (0 replies)

Tupperware Goddess

High On Nyquil
Peel My Tangerines
I Love You But You Make Me Itch
Locked In The Basement With You
Don't Lick My Turtle Any More
Feel Me, Grandma

From the album "Total Nose" by Elmo and the Polyps

Tupperware Goddess

Goddess holding moldy meat
Plastic, slippery, cold and neat
Sturdy lids that tightly seat
Tupperware is her name

She's got the stuff I'll never eat
The casseroles that smell like feet
Dishes I shall not repeat
Tupperware is her name

Tupper, Tupper, Tupperware
I shall find her everywhere
She's my goddess, Tupperware
Tupper, Tupper, Tupperware
Tup, tup, tup, tup, Tupperware!

High on Nyquil

Little red bottle
Or maybe it's green
It's sticky and sweet
In the little plastic cup
And I get high, high, high
High on Nyquil

Cheaper than booze
My little green bottle
Or maybe it's red
I don't have to smoke it
And I get high, high, high
High on Nyquil

High on Nyquil
Nothing better
Drink from the little red bottle
Or maybe it's green
And I get high, high, high
High on Nyquil

Peel My Tangerines

Peel! Peel! Peel my tangerines.
Peel! Peel! Peel!
My tangerines, all orange and shiny!
Peel! Peel! Peel!
My tangerines are never tiny!
Peel! Peel! Peel!

Unwrap them, lap them, peel them bare
Peel them, feel them everywhere
Tangerines are large and round
Orange and slippery by the pound!
Love my lovely citrus sweeties
Love them on my face and feeties!

Peel! Peel! Peel my tangerines.
Peel! Peel! Peel!
My tangerines, all fat and orange!
Peel! Peel! Peel!
Nothing ever rhymes with orange!
Peel! Peel! Peel!

I Love You But You Make Me Itch

Touch me, touch me, fondle me
Make me feel your love
But because you make me itch
You have to wear your gloves.

Cover me with calamine
After that I'll make you mine
When I'm with you I feel so rich
But wear your gloves, you make me itch.

I get a rash and hives and bumps
And welts and wens and warts and lumps.
You make me flaky, red and crusty
Hot and itchy, hot and lusty.

Cover me with calamine
After that I'll make you mine
When I'm with you I feel so rich
But now you know: you make me itch.

Locked In The Basement With You

I don't know how I got here
Down in the basement with spiders and dust
And I can't get out, the door is locked
And it's dark.
But here you are
I'm locked in the basement with you
And I don't know why
But I like it
I like it in the dark with the spiders and dust
I like being locked in the basement with you.

I don't know how long we will be here
Down in the basement with spiders and dust
They won't let us out, the door is locked
And it's dark.
But we're both here
We're locked in the basement together
We'll never know why
We'll be here together forever
In the dark with the spiders and dust
But I like it.
I like it in the dark with the spiders and dust
I like being locked in the basement with you.

Don't Lick My Turtle Any More

I saw you licking my turtle.
You took him out of his bowl
With the little plastic palm tree.
He hid in his shell
But you licked him anyhow.
Don't lick my turtle any more.

I saw you licking my dog.
You saw him sleeping on the couch
Where he isn't supposed to be.
He growled at you
But you licked him anyhow.
Don't lick my dog any more.

I saw you licking my cat.
You found her sitting at the window
Chattering at the birds.
She hissed at you
But you licked her anyhow.
Don't lick my cat any more.

You licked my dog
You licked my cat
But the worst thing you did was
You licked my turtle.
Turtles carry salmonella.
You won't lick my turtle any more.

Feel Me, Grandma

Feel me, Grandma
Sit me in your rocking chair and feel me.
Feel me, Grandma
Beat me with your cane and then feel me.

You're ancient and wrinkly and gray
You pour Geritol on your prunes
You play bingo at the church every day
You watch Lawrence Welk reruns
But I love it when you feel me.

Feel me, Grandma
Stomp me with your walker and feel me.
Feel me, Grandma
Beat me with your cane and then feel me.
Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Fri Jan 26, 2018, 09:45 PM (2 replies)

Yes. Their main export is covfefe,

which they sell mostly to Normay.
Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Mon Jan 15, 2018, 11:57 AM (0 replies)

Probably. It's all about being a member of the tribe.

They really don't care what he did; he's their guy and that's all that matters. Trump proved that point.
Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Thu Nov 9, 2017, 08:32 PM (0 replies)

I don't have your direct experience but I don't doubt any of what you're saying.

It seems to have become a cult of personality, at least in some locations. The hard-core "base" is not going to come around. No matter what he does, his approval ratings will never drop below 25%-30% - which sucks for a president but is still a whole lot of people. But it's not surprising. At the end of the Watergate scandal, when the release of the tapes proved conclusively that he was directing the cover-up, Nixon left office with 26% approval, and that stayed pretty steady for years afterwards. To this day there are people who think he was framed.

The psychology of this is that people don't like to be wrong. They don't like to admit they made a wrong or foolish decision, and there have been studies showing that the more wrong they are shown to be the more they will dig their heels in and refuse to admit they were wrong. So: You voted for Trump because he told you, for example, that he'd bring the jobs back to the factories and coal mines or that he'd build a wall to keep out the Mexicans who are stealing American jobs. These things were so important to you that you didn't care that he's a thuggish, racist, mean-spirited boor with the morals of a jackal (for some, those characteristics are actually features, not bugs), so you voted for him.

And now, the more he's revealed as an erratic, narcissistic man-baby who doesn't give a shit if you ever get another job or lose your health insurance, the more you will support him. You will insist that he'll bring the jobs back soon, just give him more time; and that the media who criticize him are wrong and unfair and fake - because to acknowledge how bad he really is, is to acknowledge that you were duped into voting for a con man. You were stupid and foolish for believing a grifter. You can't admit such an embarrassing thing about yourself - that you're a sucker for a fast-talking con artist - so you double down on your support. That's where that dead-end 25% will come from.

And yes, they are largely unpersuadable. There will be people at the edges - those who saw Trump for what he was but had ideological reasons for voting for him, as well as some of the people who voted for him only because they irrationally hated Hillary - who will desert him; this is already starting to happen. Some of them are Democrats, and they can be won back. The main target should be the people who didn't vote at all. The hard-core Trumpistas are completely hopeless, like the hard-core Nixonites.

Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Sun Jul 2, 2017, 10:31 AM (0 replies)

There is no workable *free market* solution to health care.

That's why the GOP can't make it work. They can't think outside their restrictive free-market box, so they just keep moving the pieces around hoping somehow it will all come together - but it never will. Insurance, as originally conceived, is almost pure socialism. One of the earliest forms was invented in the 18th century or thereabouts by shippers who were losing a lot of money as a result of shipping accidents, shipwrecks and piracy. So they created a system whereby everybody would pay some amount of money into a pool, and anyone who lost their ship would be compensated out of the pool. If you never lost a ship you were still paying to compensate those who did. This kind of insurance works pretty well. Most other kinds of hazard insurance (car, homeowners, etc.) works pretty much the same way: lots of people pay premiums but only a relatively small percentage make claims, so the insurer can charge premiums that most people can afford. With life insurance eventually a claim will be made, but because premiums are paid over some period of time the insurer can invest the money and thus make enough to cover the eventual payout (which is why younger people pay lower premiums, determined by actuarial data).

Health insurance is different. Sooner or later everybody gets sick or injured, but it's impossible to predict when or how. Statistically, younger people are less likely to have to make claims, but they do get sick or injured, and they can end up with conditions that will require treatment for many years. And the ability to pay for health care isn't optional: You pay or maybe you die. Because medical treatment is very expensive and the need for it is not very predictable, if you are relying on private insurance a very large premium pool is necessary, which was the reason for the individual mandate. If everybody is paying into the pool, statistically, in any given year, not everybody will make claims and there will be enough to pay for those who do. But if the only people who pay premiums are the people who are more likely to need medical treatment (e.g., older people, the disabled, pregnant women) and need the coverage, there won't be enough money in the pool unless the premiums are extremely high or there are a whole lot of deductibles and exclusions. So the GOP is in an impenetrable box. Every version they come up with can make private health insurance "affordable" only if the coverage sucks. If it actually covers what most people need and doesn't have pre-existing condition exclusions and lifetime caps it's too expensive for many people. So lower income people will opt out entirely because they have no choice (the GOP is big on "choice", and then the pool becomes even smaller and the premiums go up some more.

There is no way to make "free market" private health insurance work. Either it's shit coverage or it's too expensive. There's no way around it, but McConnell, even using his super turtle powers, can't figure that out because his tiny reptile brain can't imagine anything that operates outside the myth of the free market.
Posted by The Velveteen Ocelot | Wed Jun 28, 2017, 10:20 AM (1 replies)
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