Re: God Save the Queen...14% on her car insurance by switching to Geico

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You're trying to give ttaM apoplexy, aren't you? Go ahead, ask about the cuts to university funding.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 6:52 AM
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Serious nerds can go here. Shorter version:

health spending effectively frozen;
About 490,000 public sector jobs likely to be lost;
£7bn in additional welfare budget cuts
Police funding cut by 4% a year;
Retirement age to rise from 65 to 66 by 2020.

They claim they'll eliminate the "structural deficit" by 2015 (just in time for the ext election - how lucky!), but I'm fucked if I know what that means.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 6:56 AM
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Has there been any serious movement to slash the royal's budget?

Can't they make enough by selling pictures to the papers?


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 6:59 AM
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I still think I'd rather live in a country whose government actually announces it's going to do these things instead of desperately trying to avoid them, denying that the cuts will be necessary while everyone knows they are happening, and passing the buck of responsibility from one layer of government to the next to the next to the next. Also there seems to be some sense among the public in the UK that if taxes were higher, the government could do more things to help people. It seems refreshingly rational.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:01 AM
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5: And the last place you lived we irrational? I'm hurt. We try so hard to keep our young people.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:02 AM
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Oops.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:03 AM
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5. Yes, ned, up to a point. But the detail of this stuff makes it plain that they're mainly going to clobber poorer people once again. It gets old. They haven't raised personal taxes, you'll notice, even though they could probably have got away with introducing a marginal top rate in the present climate. I don't know what the proposed bank levy is expected to raise. It's a good thing in principle, but they could have done more.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:09 AM
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Wasn't this the point of electing them?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:11 AM
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No the point of electing them was that the last lot had been in for 13 years and were basically rotting on the bough. It was a vote against, not a vote for.

This seems quite fair and balanced.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:14 AM
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Yeah. The last vote was to get rid of Brown. Unfortunately, these are the replacements.

I quite like the 'deficit-denying dinosaur'.

max
['They're invoking Thatcher big time.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:28 AM
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They've also turned the defence budget into a bizarre surrealist fantasy on the way. If this means no more wars that would be grand, but unfortunately the main focus seems to be on slashing everything else to pay for fighting in Afghanistan.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:30 AM
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What on earth does that mean (from the OP link):

11.13 I wish politicians would stop nicking each-others sound bites. David Cameron used that "stick of rock" conceit at the Conservative Party Conference earlier this month. Conjuring a disconcerting image, he said: "What I find from the Conservative Party is that if you cut a Conservative in two the 'national interest' is written on them like a stick of rock." It sounded alarmingly like he was speaking from experience.
Do they make sticks from rocks (ouch) or rocks from sticks?

max
['I'd think if you cut a Conservative in two you'd have a lot of dead beef lying about.']

p.s. They're going to build two aircraft carriers? WTF?


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:31 AM
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That means a stick of rock candy, e.g. "Brighton rock."

These cylinders usually have a pattern embedded throughout the length, which is often the name of the resort where the rock is sold, so that the name can be read on both ends of the stick (reversed at one end) and remains legible even after pieces are bitten off. Rock is also manufactured as a promotional item, for example with a company name running through it.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:32 AM
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Well, then, people got what they wanted. Brown's gone. That's the important thing.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:37 AM
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BBC: Details of university funding cuts are emerging. The higher education resource budget, excluding research, is being cut by 40%. Down from £7.1bn to £4.2bn. A university group is warning against "sleepwalking towards a privatised university sector".


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:38 AM
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14. You need to understand that there was a widespread belief before the election that the LibDems were to the left of Labour. So the total perceived left/centre left vote was a considerable majority. I fact it turns out that the LibDems are more like the US Democrats writ small: a few vocal and attractive radicals in a party led by big business arselickers just like the rest.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:42 AM
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re: 14

Except for the fact that a lot of what is about to come to pass was the subject of explicit promises to the contrary by both the parties that form the coalition.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:43 AM
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15: It's that sleepwalking, I'd hate to see what doing it intentionally would look like.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:46 AM
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Was this like the belief that Tea Parties are 'just as upset about Republican spending as they are about Democrat spending' or was it something based on at least a scintilla of reality?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:47 AM
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It's also worth remembering that they are planning to implement an average 19% cut in budgets across major departments. As John Lanchester pointed out in an article ages ago for the LRB, cutting approximately 1/5 of most major departmental budgets is utterly unprecedented.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:47 AM
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16, 17 -- Neither of you are surprised, are you?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:48 AM
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re: 18

The leaked cut to teaching budgets was approximately 80% with humanities and social sciences essentially earmarked for near total cuts. I haven't seen what the actual announced figure is going to be yet.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:48 AM
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This is the only good thing I've seen yet in the whole package. Go thou and do likewise, Mr President.

17 is a good point. Osborne made a big act out of pretending that he hadn't understood how bad the economy was, so he couldn't do all the touchy feely stuff he'd promised in the campaign and would have to shaft everybody instead.

Like the shadow chancellor doesn't get told the bottom line.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:49 AM
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re: 21

Not all. I knew they were evil bastards and were going to use the financial crisis as an excuse for a wholesale Grover Norquist style drowning of the welfare state. I'm old enough to remember the last Tory administration really quite well. However, what I believe and what the average reader of the Daily Express or the Daily Mail believes are very different things.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:50 AM
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re: 22

Cameron explicitly promised no cuts to front-line services during the election. However, that's mysteriously transmogrified into the total gutting of vast swathes of front line services.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:51 AM
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It's that sleepwalking, I'd hate to see what doing it intentionally would look like.

As I understand it, intentional sleepwalking is a complex trick involving lucid dreaming and a zombie-like shuffle.


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:53 AM
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26: I realize that's a joke, but is intentional sleepwalking actually possible? When I've practiced lucid dreaming in the past, accidentally waking myself up was probably the major difficulty. I can't imagine actually being able to manipulate the body and stay unconcious.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:55 AM
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As I understand it, intentional sleepwalking is a complex trick involving lucid dreaming and a zombie-like shuffle.

Osborne seems to have mastered that pretty well then.

One tries not to personalise this shit, but the department that employs Mrs y has been hit with 40% admin cuts (i.e. salaries and accommodation).


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:57 AM
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Obviously, unconcious is not the word I wanted.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:57 AM
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re: 28

On a personal level I expect it closes the door to any chance I ever had of getting back into academic teaching. And will probably fuck most of the friends I have who do do that. My own job is probably fairly safe, though.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:05 AM
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30. Learn Chinese, ttaM.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:11 AM
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Chris Bertram has found a good sound track.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:14 AM
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re: 31

I was a teenager in the industrial belt in central Scotland, during the Thatcher years, so I wonder if I can market my skills? Like some sort of !Kung elder, in the Kalahari, showing the young 'uns where to find water during the dry season.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:15 AM
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Aren't cuts on that sort of scale liable to have rather a nasty effect on UK demand? Is the UK budgetary situation so bad that this is even arguably a good idea? I admit I'm rather impressed by the ease with which they appear to be cutting defense.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:16 AM
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27: Not possible to my knowledge, at least where limb movements are involved, but according to wikipedia there have been experiments where the lucid dreamer manages to send signals to a waking observer via eye movements.

28: From what you're saying, you have every right to take these decisions very personally indeed. I hope my 26 didn't seem to be making light of what's going on.


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:16 AM
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So are you blokes going to shut the country down, like the French are? You've got plenty of cause.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:18 AM
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Aren't cuts on that sort of scale liable to have rather a nasty effect on UK demand? Is the UK budgetary situation so bad that this is even arguably a good idea?

Yes. No. Short answers to simple questions. Read the Stiglitz excerpt on CT.

ttaM, what would they pay you in? Recycled crystal meth?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:19 AM
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re: 34

There's a lot of debate about it. An awful lot of economists and writers on the topic seem pretty convinced that the scale of the cuts are entirely not necessary and could actually have very bad effects longer term for growth.

The UK budgetary situation is, actually, quite a bit better than it's been through much of the last half century; including much of the last Tory administration. Although I think even those who are against harsh cuts think that some gradual readjustment is necessary, but with the emphasis on gradual combined with a fair bit of Keynesian growth promotion.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:21 AM
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re: 37.2

As some sort of Fagin figure, I'd expect cold hard cash. Down here in the South East of England, as someone still in his 30s, I'm not an old man, but back in central Scotland I'd be a grandfather and nearing death ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:22 AM
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ttaM, what would they pay you in? Recycled crystal meth?

Sticks of rock?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:23 AM
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BBC: George Eaton, for the New Statesman, writes: "George Osborne made the audacious boast that those 'with the most, will pay the most". But as a percentage of their income, the poorest 10% pay more than every other group, with the exception of the richest 10%."


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:28 AM
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I wonder what is going to get more attention, budget cuts or whatever shiny thing Steve Jobs pulls out of his sleeve.


Posted by: BA | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:31 AM
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They are much shinier now he's stopped pulling them out of his ass.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:34 AM
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They're going to build two aircraft carriers? WTF?

Yes, but as a rational compromise, only one of them will work.

(Really. The plan is to build two, but only one of them will have catapults and an air wing. The other one will go straight into mothballs - sorry, 'extended readiness' - and they'll try to flog it to the Indians or the Chinese. This is like "we've already committed to buying a washing machine and a clothes dryer, but in order to save money, we're only going to buy one plug.")


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:34 AM
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12: p.s. They're going to build two aircraft carriers? WTF?

My understanding is that they are now planning on selling one of them soon after it is built. They were going to cancel one of them altogether, but, contracts being already in place, it would have cost more to cancel than to build. So they will build both, and probably sell the other one to India.

They are also going to expedite the retirement of their main carrier, the HMS Ark Royal. It was scheduled to be mothballed in 2014, but they are going to do it in 2011 instead.

It also looks like they are going to postpone modernization of their Trident nuclear missile capacity. They could push that back by 5 years, at which time it would be nice if they realized that they don't really need nuclear missiles.

All in all, I think its awesome that they are actually cutting their defense budget, something that we just can't do in America.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:35 AM
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45. Yglesias or somebody he linked to was arguing that the Pentagon viewed the UK defence budget as a supplementary to their own. So there's that.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:38 AM
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24: I knew they were evil bastards and were going to use the financial crisis as an excuse for a wholesale Grover Norquist style drowning of the welfare state.

This seems like the peak of the Anti-Sixties/conservative counter-revolution. Which hopefully means that the counter-revolution will burn itself out like the left did in the early 70's and thereafter. Too late not to screw everyone though.

34: Aren't cuts on that sort of scale liable to have rather a nasty effect on UK demand?

Not just yes but hell yes. They were talking about Camerone saying there that the chance of a double dip recession was gone. Not now!

Is the UK budgetary situation so bad that this is even arguably a good idea?

I think they've just gone nuts.

I admit I'm rather impressed by the ease with which they appear to be cutting defense.

Well, besides the two aircraft carriers (WTF do they need two carriers for if they've got no expeditionary force?), and a bunch of Tridents. It doesn't look like they (comparatively) cut defense much at all.

They really do believe it's 1981 again and that the 80's were a fabulous time of economic growth.

max
['I think they're about to find out differently.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:40 AM
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46: so, in a way, we're cutting the Americans' defence budget for them.
...No need to thank us, guys!


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:40 AM
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||
My usual cynicism is going to be on hold, at least for today, because my housemate had her baby this morning! 8 lb 4 oz! Pretty decent! It will be a big change having a tiny baby in the house, but I am so excited! I love babies! Especially anarchist babies!
||>


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:43 AM
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This is like "we've already committed to buying a washing machine and a clothes dryer, but in order to save money, we're only going to buy one plug."

Tangentially (and perhaps related to yesterday's homeowner thread), my landlord hasn't responded to my email of two days ago explaining that the washer is on the fritz. The lack of washer is not an immediate crisis, but I noticed my running clothes were a bit ripe. So yesterday I wore them into the shower, ogged-style, lathered 'em up, rinsed and wrung them out. Popped 'em into the dryer, and today they're right as rain.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:43 AM
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49: Congratulations to your housemate. Also, all babies are anarchist about everything except their own food.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:45 AM
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Well, besides the two aircraft carriers (WTF do they need two carriers for if they've got no expeditionary force?), and a bunch of Tridents. It doesn't look like they (comparatively) cut defense much at all.

I don't know where you get the "no expeditionary force" thing from. The UK has Ocean, Bulwark, Albion,, and the four Bay class LSDs, and two forced-entry brigades: 3 Commando Brigade and 16 Air Assault Brigade. It's been doing out-of-area expeditionary warfare for the last four hundred years - most recently Iraq, Afghanistan and Sierra Leone.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:45 AM
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As horrific as all of this is, I think there is something to the notion of watching the people in office actually do things, dramatically and actively and assertively. Bitch slap theory, and all that. After watching Obama equivocate on the practicalities of everything, including the jaw-droppingly obvious stuff, and generally give them impression of being an indecisive pussy who's afraid of a fight...I can see what is attractive about people who "wield" things.

It is seriously awful that they're wielding axes at all the wrong things, however.

It seems that this kind of extreme ridiculousness couldn't possibly get done without public support, though? I'm confused. On the whole, people...like the cuts?


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:45 AM
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Sierra Leone

Wait, what? Serious question: what's going on in Sierra Leone?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:48 AM
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It seems that this kind of extreme ridiculousness couldn't possibly get done without public support, though?

Very strong party discipline and the absence of a separately-elected executive means there is virtually nothing, however unpopular, that a British prime minister with a majority in the House cannot do, as long as it's not obviously illegal or in breach of the principles of general relativity.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:48 AM
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54: nothing much at the moment. We chucked some Paras at them eleven years ago.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:49 AM
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Well. Strike?

This has put a chill in my bones. Thankfully your crazies don't have obvious authoritarian tendencies...right?


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:51 AM
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I think there is something to the notion of watching the people in office actually do things, dramatically and actively and assertively.

This is on my top ten list of awful propositions.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:51 AM
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Bitch slap theory, and all that.

I always thought that was a pretty stupid theory.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:51 AM
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re: 54

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Palliser

It was a fairly big deal. Also, arguably, not a total fuckup.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:51 AM
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It seems that this kind of extreme ridiculousness couldn't possibly get done without public support, though? I'm confused. On the whole, people...like the cuts?

No. As explained above, the Tories lied about their intentions during the election campaign and now they control Parliament. If they'd announced their intention to do this before the election, there's no way in hell they'd have won. It remains to be seen if people now start burning shit down, because unless the LibDems fall apart* there's nothing** people can do about it electorally until 2015.

*Not entirely to be ruled out, but they're not showing any sign of cracks yet.

** It's possible the House of Lords might watrer down bits of it, as they did under Thatcher, but again, not to be relied on.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:52 AM
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Thankfully your crazies don't have obvious authoritarian tendencies...right?

I'm pretty sure everybody in the UK government for at least the past thirty years has had authoritarian tendencies. You haven't heard about the whole "blanket the entire country with surveillance" thing?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:53 AM
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@54: at the moment, peace. See 52. (The operation in question was in 2000.)

Also, I rather suspect that the whole "perhaps sell it" thing is a cover for "well, by the time the first ship is finished, a good deal of water will have passed under the bridge, and a fucking ocean by the second, and among other things, if we really have balanced the budget by 2015 this project will look rather different". It would always have been the case that for much of the time, only one would have been in service while the other one was in refit or requalifying coming out of the yard.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:54 AM
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It really does seem like this crosses the "burn shit down" threshold.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:55 AM
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56, 60: Huh. Thanks. Not sure how I missed that, but I had.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:56 AM
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Not to sidetrack into US politics, but 53 is the kind of argument about Obama that makes me crazy. It's a lot easier to do things in a Parliamentary system! Politicians don't just get things done by choosing to exercise the magic power of their will.

I'm sorry for you all in Britain, though. I'm convinced that a fair number of elites are basically driven right now by status anxiety generated by the crisis, and want to ensure that those of lower rank suffer sufficiently to atone for the drop in their portfolos.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:57 AM
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I rather suspect that the whole "perhaps sell it" thing is a cover for "well, by the time the first ship is finished, a good deal of water will have passed under the bridge, and a fucking ocean by the second, and among other things, if we really have balanced the budget by 2015 this project will look rather different".

Oh, definitely. If the economy's looking a bit healthier by 2016, then another set of EMALS and a few more JCAs will be a lot easier to argue for.

I will be interested to see if anything comes out of the rumours of timesharing the two carriers with the French. (British aircraft flying off Charles de Gaulle? Hee hee.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:57 AM
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a good deal of water will have passed under the bridge

Otherwise, it is more of a dam than a bridge.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 8:58 AM
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It could be London Bridge. Under which very little water now passes.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_Bridge_%28Lake_Havasu_City%29


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:05 AM
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69: lotta water in the Colorado River.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:10 AM
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23:

"The chancellor said he would introduce legislation on Thursday in order "to extract the maximum sustainable tax revenues from financial services".

Yeah, thats pretty sweet.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:18 AM
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I learned about the London-Bridge-ends-up-in-Arizona story via this Changing World episode, including the speculation that the dude who bought the bridge thought he was getting the Tower Bridge. (Full disclosure: prior to hearing that program, I had the Tower Bridge mentally filed away as my image of London Bridge, too.)


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:20 AM
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72: or Old London Bridge, with all the cool houses and heads on pikes and so on.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:25 AM
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When pikes are outlawed, only outlaws will have their heads on pikes.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:29 AM
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I was unaware that this was the opposite of what the coalition members had promised to do. On the plus side, you can now get an election called sometime soon by the opposition, maybe? Sorry, I know nothing of politics, only what "rock" is.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:33 AM
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58: Awful doesn't mean inaccurate. Rationality is not actually all that high on the list of things that actually motivate people. We're all pretty good at lying to ourselves.

59: Define "stupid." "Stupid" as in, that's dumb that people might react that way? Or "stupid" as in, inaccurate? Because I think if you're going with the latter, that's...pretty stupid. There is something viscerally comforting about the notion that people in charge are acting, that somebody is, in fact, in charge, particularly in times of great insecurity. You may consider this a "stupid" reaction, but noting that it exists is not stupid. If you dispute that this is, in fact, a common reaction in times of perceived crisis, go fucking read something.

66: That wasn't so much an argument about Obama as an observation of perception. Yeah, the US executive is limited in some ways, the Senate doesn't really function, and the House is full of crazy people. So? This is new? The way you wage political war matters. Obama is not aggressive, in an unforgivingly aggressive political environment. What he says and does publicly matters, on a whole range of issues. I know it's not his style, but then maybe his style isn't entirely suited to the moment.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:36 AM
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74: In New Jersey, there's plenty of head on the 'pike.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:36 AM
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||
I used to work for the lizardy insu/ranc/e company mentioned - don't let anyone tell you it's a boring industry. I now have amazing tales of corporate/customer/regulatory shenanigans, with a heavy side of data mining.

Didja know that if you get your oil changed in California, there's a good chance your odometer reading is getting sent to them?
|>


Posted by: beebaras | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:43 AM
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re: 75

Nope. The government sets the election date, and this government has proposed a law fixing parliaments, so the next election won't be for years.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:43 AM
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52: I don't know where you get the "no expeditionary force" thing from.

I overstated it as shorthand. From the Guardian:

Britain's armed forces will no longer be able to mount the kind of operations conducted in Iraq and Afghanistan, the government's strategic defence review made clear today. For at least a decade it will also be impossible to deploy the kind of carrier taskforce which liberated the Falklands 28 years ago.
Though defence chiefs said today they will still have significant expeditionary forces, they will not be able to intervene on the scale of recent years. According to new defence planning assumptions, UK forces will be able to carry out one enduring brigade-level operation with up to 6,500 personnel, compared to the 10,000 now in Afghanistan, plus two smaller interventions, at any one time.
Ok, so they're just going be very small expeditionary forces. And here's a good one:
The construction, mainly in Scottish shipyards, of two aircraft carriers - the largest ships ever built for the navy - will go ahead even though there will be no planes to fly from them until 2020 at the earliest. That is because the existing fleet of Harriers will be scrapped immediately and an as yet unknown number of US Joint Strike Fighters due to replace them will not be ready for another 10 years.
HMS Ark Royal will also be scrapped immediately, while HMS Illustrious or HMS Ocean will continue for now as a helicopter carrier. The new carriers, the Queen Elizabeth and Prince of Wales - costing more than £5bn between them - will be ready by 2020. The former is likely to be mothballed without an aircraft having ever flown from her and the latter adapted to take a cheaper version of the JSF, which will use catapults to take off. The contract meant that scrapping the order for the second carrier would cost more than building her, David Cameron told MPs.
But they're gonna keep the Tridents! I dunno, on the whole it doesn't look like it makes a lot of sense. It's less like they're they've got a plan on cutting defense and more like they're throwing darts randomly at the MoD budget. Really, it seems like they'd be better off keeping the carriers they have along with the Harriers, and maybe also keeping the personel and ditching the tridents and the new carriers.

max
['But you guys will still be able to nuke Sierra Leone!']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:49 AM
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You're right, it doesn't make sense, and they absolutely should be ditching the Tridents.

79: in theory, though, if the coalition starts to crumble, the opposition could propose a bill overturning that law, get it passed (with sufficient Lib Dem defector support) and then hold a rapid vote of no confidence, leading to an election.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:52 AM
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Didja know that if you get your oil changed in California, there's a good chance your odometer reading is getting sent to them?

If you get it changed in Wisconsin, the oil is 10% cheese grease.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:56 AM
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Also, do I need to start reading the fine print at Jiffy Lube?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:56 AM
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For at least a decade it will also be impossible to deploy the kind of carrier taskforce which liberated the Falklands 28 years ago.

¡Adelante, che! ¡Ya viene nuestro momento!


Posted by: Veteranos de la Guerra de las Malvinas | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 9:58 AM
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re: election promises

http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/10/20/labour-proved-right-on-cancer-leaflets-after-coalition-abandons-1-week-target/


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:02 AM
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Sounds like British Foreign Policy in the future will be limited like the rest of Europe's. Scowls and recriminations and speeches at the UN. Very effective.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:06 AM
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To further 53:

The most obvious example, for me, is the whole gay rights thing (huge surprise, right?), because 1) there is an obvious right side of history (seriously, that alone -- how often does that come around?), 2) the actual right thing to do is equally obvious, 3) public opinion is fast coming around, and, for the non-ancient, is already a settled issue, and 4) you fucking stand up for the people on your team when they get shit on. That may not be a value that everyone holds, but it appears to be a value that many, if not most, people hold, and in terms of politics and elections, it well fucking matters. And Obama's equivocations here do have real world consequences. It matters when public figures give the impression that it's ok to beat up on gay people (or Latinos, or whoever), because people tend to believe them.

I also have fairly big problems with how beholden he is to the banking sector, but that seems a whole lot more complicated. The slide into plutocracy is not something I'm terribly happy about, generally. A few days ago, people here were all in a hissy about Citizens' United and the consequences for financial support of both parties. Didn't Obama raise several hundred million dollars from lots of little guys? The enthusiasm of the masses still matters. Nobody gets enthused about a cold fish who watches his buddies get beat up because it's impractical to interfere, and then explains, privately, that really, he has their back. (And I don't just mean gay people here.)

Nobody disputes that Obama has had to face great challenges. But I think that sometimes the best way to meet a great challenge is to actually be great. That requires courage, in the sense that usually involves taking risks. He doesn't seem so cool with that. That, or he seriously lacks an appreciation for the dramatic possibilities.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:06 AM
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84: ironically, this is exactly what happened the last time the Tories got into power. There was a recession, they wanted to cut government spending, they started cutting the armed forces and selling off aircraft carriers to India, and that's how the Falklands War kicked off.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:07 AM
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Sounds like British Foreign Policy in the future will be limited like the rest of Europe's. Scowls and recriminations and speeches at the UN. Very effective.

"Scowls and recriminations and speeches" as opposed to "long counterinsurgency campaigns in Asia" which are working out superpeachykeen!


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:09 AM
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WRT the UK: people don't like the cuts, but they don't appear to be up in arms about them, either? I'm just trying to get a sense of the mood. It seems to be one of resignation? Is that right?


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:09 AM
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Now children, can you say, "Double dip"?

STEVEN LAW, PRESIDENT R3 INSOLVENCY PROFESSIONALS: We calculate that 148,000 small businesses are at risk of failure, but of course not all businesses will lose all of their public sector work. Our members predict that 2011 will be a difficult year for small businesses and factors such as loss of public sector work will see company insolvency numbers start to rise, potentially making 2010 the year of the calm before the storm. Although numbers have decreased over the course of this year, insolvency practitioners are expecting 27,540 corporate insolvencies in 2011.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:14 AM
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re: 90

There's been a fairly comprehensive propaganda job getting done for a while that it's all the previous administration's fault, and that this is tough medicine but we are all going to be in it together for the good of the country. Actual manifest anger might take a while to develop.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:14 AM
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90. It's been five hours since they were announced. Ask again in five days, or five weeks. People haven't even had time to discuss it yet.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:16 AM
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I'm convinced that a fair number of elites are basically driven right now by status anxiety generated by the crisis, and want to ensure that those of lower rank suffer sufficiently to atone for the drop in their portfolos.

The current ideological opposition to raising tax rates on the rich (and in the US, to cutting the defense budget) reminds me of Tom Lehrer's line about feeling like a Christian Scientist with appendicitis.

I love babies! Especially anarchist babies!

Yay, start them early. As I was headed out the door to drop off my ballot yesterday, the girls asked me who I voted for, and Siobhán said, "I hate Chris Dudley" (Republican fuckwit gubernatorial candidate). I gave the considered, fatherly response that "we don't hate Chris Dudley, we just hate what he stands for," but I really wanted to say, "Yeah, I know. He's a total cunt."


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:17 AM
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88, 89 ajay in 88 you seem to imply that cutting defense spending leads to adventurism on the part of one's adversaries, but in 89 that large defense budgets lead to adventurism on the part of the nation. A conundrum.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:18 AM
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As chris says, the actual substance of the cuts was only announced today, although bits have been leaking out for a while, and the 'need' for them has been getting heavily trailed since after the election. _Before_ the election, on the other hand, it was supposed to be all about efficiency savings, and cuts broadly in line with those planned by the outgoing government, perhaps a little quicker but with no cuts to front-line services, blah blah blah.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:18 AM
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87 -- No disagreement here. The proposition stated above, though, would hold that an Obama announcement of more aggressive enforcement of DADT would be better than what's he been doing. And burning gays at the stake even better than that. At least he'd be doing something.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:19 AM
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I gave the considered, fatherly response ... but I really wanted to say, "Yeah, I know. He's a total cunt."

You're a disgrace to the noble forebears who provided you with your name ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:19 AM
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97 - No, it doesn't. It says that, largely because of my own experience rending garments and tearing out hair while watching Obama, I finally understand why people appreciate decisive action so much. I didn't say I supported it on the basis of decisiveness, regardless of what the action was; I actually implied the opposite.

The fact is most people don't follow politics closely. It takes a lot of work to master policy material, and a lot of education. And it's, like, constant work. You fall behind really easily. To be an informed voter is basically a fucking job. (Why this is so is..whatever. Not going into it now. I hate the Media too.) And people (most people) have actual jobs, and lives, to balance. They vote on impressions. Truth. So fucking make sure they get the right one. This is not rocket science.

(I am reminded of some of JMM's recent posts at TPM wrt Conway's Aqua Buddha ad, and how reactions to it reveal fault lines in the Democratic party. It should be really, really obvious, but I'm in the I'd-prefer-to-see-Conway-go-further-and-really-bleed-that-fucker-out camp.)

Wrt UK: I hadn't realized the news was so recent, I guess only because I'd heard about the leaks as well. Huh. That is...well. "Betrayal" comes to mind. Do you have an organized, media-savvy opposition? My guess is...probs not. That makes things...harder.

Ugh.

I am sorry. Fingers crossed for spontaneous protest movement?


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:33 AM
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95: false dichotomy - I'd like to think there was a third way between "rendering your national defences down for dog food" and "getting 10,000 troops involved in damn silly wars run by an idiot in the middle of nowhere". Large defence budgets certainly enable adventurism but they don't make it inevitable.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:33 AM
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Do you have an organized, media-savvy opposition? My guess is...probs not.

Well, the current opposition used to be (give them their due) an organised and media-savvy Labour government - hope they haven't forgotten how.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:35 AM
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100: Is it? Bureaucracies function kinda like organisms, right? They act to assure their own survival? Given a budget, you have to do something with it, or it gets taken away, and you die (a little bit). I've observed this to be true personally, and seem to recall reading about it somewhere a long time ago, but I can't cite anything useful. So...I dunno. But seems plausible.

I guess you could have the guy in charge keep a muzzle on the generals, but the guy in charge is also usually getting much of his advice from those same generals, right?

Oh, right. Militarization of intelligence: not a good thing.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:39 AM
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Large defence budgets certainly enable adventurism but they don't make it inevitable.

Sure. big stick, and all that.

I am a firm believer in civilian control of the military, but sometimes I think that only a combat vet should be allowed to commit troops. And not a flyboy or a squid, a dogface grunt who has tasted mud and blood. Very reluctant warriors.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:41 AM
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Also, arguably, not a total fuckup.

Pretty much the highest praise any of us could muster up for any recent policy decisions in the US or the UK, I think.

(And new mouseover text?)


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:42 AM
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We're not French, we'll probably just be miserable and complain a lot. I'm fucking depressed about it. In 5 years' time my eldest could be just starting university - I can't see how that's going to get paid for.

Was having a conversation yesterday comparing Aldi and Lidl (cheap supermarkets) and my friend started laughing at me - "oh you higher rate tax payers, you're all so extravagant!"


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:42 AM
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I think that only a combat vet should be allowed to commit troops

Pity that bit didn't make it into Article II.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:43 AM
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105: Wow, we have Aldi here in the States, too. They are . . . never in the nicest neighborhoods.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:45 AM
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sometimes I think that only a combat vet should be allowed to commit troops. And not a flyboy or a squid, a dogface grunt who has tasted mud and blood. Very reluctant warriors.

I don't think this is actually true. (Hitler, Mussolini, Churchill...)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:46 AM
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Well, I live 2 minutes' walk from a Lidl, and a longer walk or short drive from a couple of Aldis. I don't live in the nicest neighbourhood! Aldi is nicer than Lidl, if you're wondering. I won't use Tesco, and Aldi is a lot cheaper than Sainsbury.

But in 2013 we'll lose our child benefit ... we'll still eat, we just won't be able to have our luxurious camping holidays (hollow laughter). Just as well my parents live in a nice holiday area.

C comes home moaning about university fees each day at the moment. Apparently in Oxford the colleges are starting to agitate to just go private - he's not keen on staying there if that happened.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:50 AM
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108. fine examples. Request withdrawn.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:53 AM
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103: It's usually a bad idea to play poker when you care about the money.

Monstrous analogy, yeah. But grain of truth. I would hope no military decisions are easy ones, but the guy making them has to be willing to sacrifice lives that aren't his own.

Hmmm. The way you described it, I had in mind a commander who has never really moved on from their combat days, and can't distance themselves at all from the troops on the ground. But now that I'm actually thinking about it, it seems that's probably an unfair reading.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:54 AM
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It should be really, really obvious, but I'm in the I'd-prefer-to-see-Conway-go-further-and-really-bleed-that-fucker-out camp.)

Yup. I'd feel differently if Paul were running on a message of 'I'm not particularly religious and I don't see why that should matter'. But he's been talking up his 'Christian values' so... fuck him.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:55 AM
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112: I know, right? HIS NAME IS RAND.

"What do you believe?"
"In Jesus Christ, our Lord."
"No, I mean what are your policy positions."
"Well, I'm a Christian."
"So, on the Civil Rights Act...?"
"That's all the time I have. God bless."


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 10:58 AM
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I won't use Tesco, and Aldi is a lot cheaper than Sainsbury.

You're me. Also, Aldi do a surprisingly good Rioja at £3.99 and a lot of their stuff is actually pretty OK.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:01 AM
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Ha. Also...fair? I don't remember a lot of things I did while stoned, either:

"I wish I had a great story about it, I don't remember anything about the story," Paul told Ingraham when she asked about the Aqua Buddha tale. He added that "he and other college-era friends couldn't remember the anonymous woman who has been quoted in the press."

Is anyone in Kentucky? How has Paul been able to reconcile libertarianism and social conservatism? That is some crazy shit.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:03 AM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:11 AM
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Meanwhile in Ireland, our forthcoming budget is likely to be even worse. The previous batch of cuts have, naturally, shrunk the economy, but we are so deep in the hole that we feel we have to keep doing what the people lending us the money want to do.

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2010/1019/breaking52.html?via=rel


Posted by: emir | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:16 AM
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115 - I believe Tho/rn is, yeah? I expect he deals with it the way most politicians deal with gaping contradictions: blithely ignoring them and counting on nobody to notice or care.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:18 AM
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109: Oh, I always lived relatively near an Aldi as well. In Chicago, anyway. I am not sure they have them in NY.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:23 AM
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119: Thorn is from Kentucky. She even sent a special plea to the Mineshaft for help in dealing with living in such a sad political state. We were no help at all.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:25 AM
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121: I live fairly near an Aldi too. Very cheap, and mostly very good quality in my experience.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:27 AM
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Wikipedia tells me that Aldi's peer in the US is Save-a-Lot. I have only ever been to one Save-a-Lot (in OH), but it was pretty damn tragic (all off brands with crazy names).


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:31 AM
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76.2: it's a stupid way to describe electoral politics in the US, which I believe is its origin. You appear to be using it differently, which leads me to believe I would have to "go read something" other than Josh Marshall (who coined the phrase) to understand what you're talking about. But that's okay, I don't really want to.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:31 AM
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Is anyone in Kentucky? How has Paul been able to reconcile libertarianism and social conservatism? That is some crazy shit.

Republicans believe themselves to be fans of "liberty" and social conservatives. It's not any harder to reconcile than it was for Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Dick Cheney, George W. Bush, etc.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:39 AM
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124: Aldi operates as Aldi in Pennsylvania. (I've never been into one, but I've driven past.)


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:39 AM
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119: Word. The weird thing is that there's absolutely no advertising for either candidate in my part of the state. I occasionally see a sign in someone's lawn, but they're wildly outnumbered by all the so-and-so for city treasurer signs. I don't know if that's because this area is the one Republican stronghold or if it's true across the state or if I'm just not watching television enough. It's odd, though, because we're getting non-stop Ohio ads and none from KY.

There was a lot of talk about who'd win the Republican primary and I did see plenty of signage then, but nothing since. Well, one day I was driving to work and there were a bunch of middle-aged white people standing by the interstate entrance ramp waving Rand Paul signs. But that was a month or so ago and was the last I've seen of them. This seems really unlike the other senate races I remember.

JMcQ, I'm loving Siobhán more and more every time you tell a story about her. I'll bet she'd fit right in as a blogger here by the time she hits middle school.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:46 AM
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124: Here in the capital of Ohio, Aldi's is Aldi's.

And A=A!

And ,yes, off-brands with crazy names -- but inside the boxes and bag is the same stuff as in the boxes and bags with well-loved sane brand names.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:49 AM
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125: I suppose it is easier to just call things (or people, as some are wont to do) stupid and then run away without bothering to make an actual argument. Carry on, then.

126: Ah. Right. Sometimes I forget that rationality is not all that important. It does seem somehow more obvious with Paul, because of the whole well-articulated-libertarian-philosophy thing, but, yeah. Being comfortable with cognitive dissonance is, I suppose, not new.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:49 AM
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Also, Kentucky is some crazy shit. It's all a weird mix of who sounds Jesus-y and supports tobacco farmers and mine owners and you can't always guess from a given position whether the person will be a Republican or a Democrat, but they're generally pretty conservative regardless. Maybe because we're right on the break between South and North things are not entirely like they are in the South or the North?

In other local political news, when we were having brunch last week at the nice restaurant in our town, my partner recognized fellow diner Nick Clooney, George's pa and almost our representative except that he lost that race to a Republican. His baby granddaughter (or that was our guess) was adorable.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:50 AM
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Um, the numbers changed.

I was referencing what is now 123 and 124.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:51 AM
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Thorn, you live in "the Republican stronghold" in Kentucky? This is an honest question, as I have never been anywhere I could describe as a Republican stronghold of a Southern state since coming out: are people cool, are they dicks, or is it a small enough community that it's kind of "those are our homos" kind of situation?

(I don't mean to imply that all Republican strongholds in Southern states are the same. I'm just curious.)


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:55 AM
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125/27: Oh! By peer I meant something like "chief competitor" -- Save-a-Lot is it's own company. The Aldis I've been in are certainly nicer than the Save-a-Lot I've been in.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:55 AM
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127: I'd forgotten they had them there. I remember one up in Dublin or nearby.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:56 AM
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128.1: I was saying that Josh Marshall's originally elucidated theory was stupid. I also think the behavior described by that theory is stupid, and eventually counter-productive to the party that tries it. On the other hand, it seems that neither of those things is what you were talking about. Whatever you were talking about is something I have no developed opinion on (partly because I haven't read most of your comments in this thread), nor is it something I feel like engaging, for a variety of reasons.

I hope that's clear.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 11:56 AM
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I also think the behavior described by that theory is stupid, and eventually counter-productive to the party that tries it.
Which part? Attacking an opponents strengths or forcefully counterattacking?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:03 PM
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135: the former.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:05 PM
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131: It's not THE Republican stronghold, I suppose, but there are two major and fairly urban regions of the state that trend very Catholic and very Republican compared to the rest of the state. And what I was trying to say was that Democrats in Kentucky are basically Southern Democrats and not all that distinguishable from Republicans in the North, whereas Republicans in Kentucky are even farther to the right. So for internal races for state representation, the state tends to go Democrat on the whole, but on the national level they're strongly with the Republicans.

We have had absolutely zero problems as an interracial same-sex couple in the small town where we live. We're both out at our jobs (the first job where my partner ever has been) and don't face any problems because of that, though I realize this is partly a reflection of economic privilege. There are people who have it worse than we do, but there are plenty of gay bars and a small spree of hate crimes near here led to huge backlash from the community as a whole. Living in an urban/suburban area even though the people vote for anti-abortion and anti-gay rights folks is probably better than living in the rural and Democrat-trending parts of the state. I do not think of where I live as part of the south, though that's partly because my parents are both transfers from far north. The southern accents don't pick up until deeper into the state, though older people here do say "Warshington" when sending Republicans there.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:07 PM
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Or rather, I think the idea that the former works is a fallacious one, and that trying to execute on that idea is likely to fail in all circumstances except for very specific ones, and most specifically I think basing your whole political structure around strategies that kinda-sorta may have played a role in the outcome of, oh, three elections is going to lead you down the kind of path that ends with candidates who are completely incompetent at anything that doesn't involve engagingly attacking the opponent on their alleged strengths.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:08 PM
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JMM's original topic, swiftboating, seemed fairly effective.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:09 PM
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139: it's certainly possible.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:10 PM
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Thesis: If ignorance is the vice of the politically-unaware majority, relentless demands for gestures of dominance are the vice of the politically partisan middlebrow. We (the middlebrow partisans) need our politicians to play their role in the psychodrama we've constructed for them inside our heads.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:13 PM
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I'd agree that any given electoral tactic will only have a marginal impact, but they were very good at giving supporters a simple line of attack to use whenever coworkers or friends bring up a candidates strengths.
I'm not sure I would attribute current bumper crop of incompetent Republican candidates to that specific tactic, but it's true that the current enviroment seems to foster people capable of mastering a few meaningless themes.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:15 PM
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137: Huh. Thanks. Also, sorry for misidentifying Kentucky. I obviously don't know much about it.

Sometimes I think the US is a comically large country.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:20 PM
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Oh, DQ, Kentucky is a weird state to classify. It didn't secede but it's below the Mason-Dixon line. The geographic regions within it are pretty distinct in terms of look and culture (not to mention time zone if you head far enough west) and I really only know the part where I live and what's within a few hours of me. I'm just trying to say that living in our house less than a mile from downtown C/in/c/inn/ati is hardly like living where a friend of mine does in rural Alabama.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:24 PM
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144 - Ever since I learned who the original Cassius Clay was, it's always struck me as a little bit of a bummer that Muhammad Ali changed his name from one honoring both his father and a righteous dude like Clay-the-first. No offense to Mehmed Ali and the professionalization of the Egyptian bureaucracy or anything.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:31 PM
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145: I'm very intrigued by how/why/when parents decide to use a whole name honoring a historical figure. It seems odd to me, but sometimes kind of cool, as in this case. Though it made me delve further and Wikipedia tells me that Muhammad Ali's dad named his other son Rudolph Valentino Clay, which is exactly the kind of choice I find questionable!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:38 PM
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146: Not nearly as questionable as "Modle Ling Clay."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 12:40 PM
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Aird Ryin Clay.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 2:12 PM
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As horrific as all of this is, I think there is something to the notion of watching the people in office actually do things, dramatically and actively and assertively.

Well, it's great if they're doing things that you would like to see them do, but otherwise, not so great and possibly scary.

The one thing I really like about a parliamentary system (as against the US system) is that, because it's more streamlined (without all those checks and balances getting in the way), the notion of responsibility (or, who's to blame?) is much more straightforward and transparent. But on the other hand, the greatest strength of the parliamentary model is probably also its greatest weakness. It's easier to pass a major initiative (like universal healthcare, for example), but also easier to undo or cancel out through re-legislation.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 10-20-10 7:21 PM
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Heartwarming story of tolerance: squaddie dancing like madman in a club. Second squaddie comes up to him. "Why are you dancing like a huge gay?" First squaddie: "Because I am a huge gay." Second squaddie punches him. First squaddie's regimental buddies all join in to defend him from further attack with cries of "Yes, but he's our huge gay, so leave him alone." Second squaddie taken away in an ambulance. Unit cohesion undamaged - if anything, reinforced (US army, take note).


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:03 AM
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34: Aren't cuts on that sort of scale liable to have rather a nasty effect on UK demand? Is the UK budgetary situation so bad that this is even arguably a good idea?

The UK's public debt situation: not as bad as the Tories want you to believe, actually healthier than it was in the early nineties. There is no need for these cuts other than ideology.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:10 AM
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151. Good catch, Martin. See also DeLong, here. Bad economics by any respectable criterion. Pure ideology.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:19 AM
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Meanwhile the Netherlands also has a shiny new rightwing government and the cuts already announced by the outgoing no longer so shiny rightwing government will only get worse. Some 18 billion euros need to be saved, apparantly, largely for ideological reasons again.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:51 AM
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The detail emerging about the cuts confirms them as vicious small minded cuntery of the highest water. Ideological, punitive, nasty, and brutal.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:59 AM
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153. So you envisage something similar in the Netherlands? Bad shit.

I blame the Bundesbank, me. It seemed that the EU was gearing up for a spot of sensible fiscal stimulus, when the Germans were suddenly struck down as on the road to Damascus and decided they's take their bat and ball home if we diddn't all convert to Mellonism.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:01 AM
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Believe it or not I can actually spell when I'm writing on paper with a pen.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:02 AM
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Still, maybe a chance soon for a rousing chorus of 'Tramp the Dirt Down' ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:09 AM
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Yeah, I'm looking forward to that. OTOH, apparently they're talking about giving her a state funeral, which hasn't happened for any non-military non-royal since fucking Churchill, and would drive me mad, not least because it would be paid for out of my fucking taxes.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:12 AM
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158: damn right. State provision of funerals will only undermine the otherwise healthy private funeral industry. We can't have people lying around and expecting the state to bury them when they could get on their hearse and find a job.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:18 AM
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Apart from anything else, it sets a disturbing precedent - I wouldn't rule out Blair getting a state funeral when he finally carks it in 2025 or so.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:19 AM
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I'd be willing to compromise on letting the council pick her up and dump her in a landfill somewhere. Would that count as a state funeral?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:20 AM
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161: certainly not! Some horrible lefty local council? Probably riddled with equality officers and one-legged black lesbian outreach workers? There's nothing she'd have hated more!

Hmm, what could we do? Burial. Burial. ...so we need, basically, a deep hole in the ground. One that isn't being used for anything any more. Now, where in Britain could we find a lot of deep holes in the ground that aren't being used for anything any more?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:24 AM
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Good point. There might even be a half decent brass band available to play at the funeral.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:30 AM
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I'm guessing such a band would be happy to play for free, thus saving the taxpayer, if they were allowed to pick the music.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:31 AM
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And the constant stream of earnest right-wing visitors to the Grimethorpe Thatcher Shrine would provide a significant source of income to the local community, who would work in ancillary jobs as hotel staff, tour guides and muggers.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:34 AM
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What about the queue of earnest not-right-wing visitors who want to join the queue at the MT memorial pissoir?


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 5:08 AM
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122: We have Save-A-Lot in Mass too. I just learned about one in Roxbury. I think that they do sell fressh fruits and vegetables for less money than the other chains.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 5:20 AM
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We have Save-A-Lot in Mass too

I'm telling you, these liturgical changes are really getting out of hand.


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 6:14 AM
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166: they'd have less disposable income and so wouldn't be quite so much of a boon to the muggers.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 6:20 AM
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http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/10/21/how-the-cuts-will-destroy-lives-of-people-like-sue-marsh-and-encourage-divorce/

http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/10/21/our-great-housing-scandal-gets-worse/

Maybe I'll live long enough to piss on their graves, too ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 6:27 AM
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Hmmm... maybe we'll see a realignment sooner than we thought:

Benjamin Ramm, editor of the Liberal magazine, said: "These cuts are as swift and savage as many Lib Dems feared and I know of no party member who will campaign to defend them."
He claimed: "This [spending] review marks the culmination of the Conservative project to dismantle the liberal infrastructure of the welfare state - and it signals the beginning of the end for the Liberal Democrats."
Trouble is, even if the LibDems split 50/50 and all the rest voted against, it'd still pass. It doesn't help that the Adams Family won't get their principles wet to come and vote even though their base is getting its arses kicked as hard or harder than anybody.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 6:40 AM
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So what does it take for Nick Clegg to lead the party out of the coalition?

max
['Or does he just suffer a party split?']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 6:57 AM
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Nick Clegg is fubar; probably so is his party. He can't personally lead them out of the coalition unless he can present some action by Cameron as being in egregious bad faith. He's made it very hard for himself to do so, so he's stuck there looking like Ramsey MacDonald in the National Government of 1931 repeated as farce. Meanwhile his constituents shout abuse at him in the supermarket.

Meanwhile the LibDems are polling at 14% and falling, after taking 20% odd in the election. They will be wiped out if they don't do something. So they will presumably split. The question is how long it will take, and how many of them leave in a block. The arithmetic allows the Tories to carry on unless pretty much all of them go at the same time and in the same direction.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 7:22 AM
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The growth of some balls?


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 7:27 AM
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The growth of some balls?

But if he stood up and said what needed to be said he'd just swap looking like an evil prat for looking like a guillible prat. Which may look personally more sympathetic, but isn't likely to give him many political brownie points. He's painted himself into a corner, good style.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 7:33 AM
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Apposite Churchill quote: "When I was a conservative I said a lot of very stupid things. And I became a liberal so that I would not have to go on saying very stupid things."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 7:38 AM
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Are the USians more prone to having state funerals than the Brits? Although, having typed that out and googled a bit, I think I was eliding the difference between State Funeral (which seems is mostly for presidents—Reagan's is the most recent that comes to mind) and lying in state in the Capitol building, which several non-presidents have done.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 9:14 AM
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The point being, OMG, Ronald Reagan had a seekrit socialist funeral and no one even noticed!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 9:16 AM
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I can only think of three state funerals in my lifetime (although I suppose the old king got one when I was two): Churchill, Diana Spencer and the Queen Mother. I don't think any non-royal besides Churchill got one in the 20th century, though I'm open to correction on that. We don't do them much. We do big public memorial services for for famous people, but they're privately organised.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 9:39 AM
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179: also Louis Mountbatten, apparently. There's a list.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_funerals_in_the_United_Kingdom

Most surprising: Edward Carson (the man who got Oscar Wilde put in prison).

But I note that Newton and Darwin both got them. Good.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 9:50 AM
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Well, Mountbatten was a sort of honorary royal. Which leaves 10 in 250 years, only four of which were prim monsters (and Wellington didn't get his for that). But there hasn't been a non-royal for 45 years, so it's time to let the idea lapse.

I'm appalled that Carson got one, and not because of Oscar.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:00 AM
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Yes, Carson surprised me too.

I'm OK with having a rule that state funerals only go to royals, people who have revolutionised the world of science, and people who have defeated a tyrant who conquered most of Europe. (Diana didn't get one, apparently; "ceremonial funeral", not "state funeral".)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:17 AM
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Agreed. Thatcher however:

* is not royal, the jokes when the £1 coin came out notwithstanding;
* her scientific contribution is limited to some part in the development of soft scoop ice cream (for which she will burn in hell if for no other reason);
* defeated a tyrant who conquered a couple of undefended islands with a population of 1,800.

So, no.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:27 AM
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the jokes when the £1 coin came out

Enlighten us? I thought you might mean that Thatcher was on the one-pound coin, but the internet says nope.

The GOP periodically get all hot-and-bothered over putting Reagan on the dime, which would be a double whammy, since he would supplant FDR. The other coin-based issue that comes up is more pragmatic: people advocating for the phasing out of the penny, which always finds opposition from the Illinois lawmakers, seeing as that's Lincoln's coin. But really, that's a bit silly, as Lincoln's already on the $5 bill.

A perfect West Wing-style solution to both of these issues is to (1) put Reagan on the penny and (2) phase out the penny.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:38 AM
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The £1 coin was designed to look like the gold pound coins of the 19th century (same size, same pattern on the rim, originally same reverse), but is made of some hideous yellow alloy.

Therefore when they were issued they were referred to as "Brass Margarets", since they were thick and brassy and thought they were Sovereigns.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:44 AM
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With George Washington being both on the one dollar bill and the first president, I think they should keep the pattern. Monroe should be on the $5 bill and Lincoln on the $16 bill. Grant is only $2 off where he should be.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:47 AM
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Plus, every time you lost $9, you could make a joke about how long William Henry Harrison lasted in office.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:48 AM
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So Bristol Palin's on the fifty?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:49 AM
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If somebody tried to pass me a $16 bill, I wouldn't care if it had Nixon on it. I'd call the police.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:49 AM
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Grover Cleveland on the $22 and $24 is going to get confusing.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:50 AM
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190: Yes, but people will learn to pay attention and get better at math.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:51 AM
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You wouldn't believe what's going to be on the $100.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:52 AM
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Hm, Jefferson's already on the $2. Maybe as a compromise, John Adams can be on every second bottle in Sam Adams' six packs.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:53 AM
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192: Uh, Kobe. Duh.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:53 AM
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170: Everything is so fucked up, I guess it's natural that way
-- Hüsker Dü

You read stuff like that and it's hard not to get into a mcmanus headspace. I mean, seriously, what is it going to take for middle-class people, liberals especially, to wake up to how fucked up things are getting? See people on the bus and everyone's just nodding along to their fucking iPhones. Feel like Dap at the end of School Daze -- just want to run around screaming "WAKE UP! WAKE UP!" Why can't people see how this all works. It's not even hard anymore, you don't have to subscribe to dangerous lefty magazines, it's all right there on the blogs. Yet you look at the comments sections and it's all these people talking shit about leftists and union organizers and the poor, and gleefully rubbing their hands about some poor bastard going to jail for life on a drug beef. WHY? WHY? Why are people so stupid? I think I would go crazy if I wasn't in the anarchist scene. Not that we're all so brilliant, but at least you've got people who see through the first few layers of bullshit. God, I fucking hate everybody. Nuclear annihilation would have been the best possible option, instead we get the Iron Heel, brought to you by Google. Fuck it.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 10:57 AM
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So Bristol Palin's on the fifty?

Pleasepleaseplease let it be Christine O'Donnell. I think I'm in love with her.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 11:04 AM
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You aren't helping Natilo find his calm.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 11:09 AM
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God, I fucking hate everybody. Nuclear annihilation would have been the best possible option, instead we get the Iron Heel, brought to you by Google. Fuck it.

When you spit at God, it lands back in your face.


Posted by: Tevye the Milkman | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 11:16 AM
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And if you thrown stuff at Santa Claus, everybody wonders why the Eagles have such mean fans.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 11:39 AM
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Kobe has all the fans!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 11:50 AM
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Be careful what you wish for: You just might get it.

Came in to work today to find that there's a mini-meltdown going on. Can't go into details, but suffice it to say that some people who think they can run an organization remotely as they flit off on coastal schmooze-fests are sorely mistaken.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 12:44 PM
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Have you tried pulling the T1 line out of the wall and doing whatever you think is best?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 12:58 PM
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God, I fucking hate everybody.

I still love you, Natilo. Would a rainbow help?


Posted by: God | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 12:58 PM
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Hold out for the double rainbow, Natilo! Then they'll make a song about you on the internet.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 1:00 PM
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Two rainbows, one sky.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 1:05 PM
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202: Yeah, actually, we were supposed to be moving the server today, but had to delay it. It's a cock-up for sure.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 1:46 PM
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I'd always assumed that whenever somebody said we were having a "server migration" they were just taking out their aggression in a legal way.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 1:51 PM
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If somebody tried to pass me a $16 bill, I wouldn't care if it had Nixon on it. I'd call the police.

An old hillbilly decides he'll go into the counterfeiting business. While he's artistically talented, he isn't especially competent, so he prints himself up a stack of $19 bills.

Satisfied with his work, he heads down to the general store to try out one of the forged banknotes. He tells the store clerk, "Gimme a dollar's worth of chewin' tobackee."

The clerk measures out a dollar's worth of tobacco. The hillbilly hands the clerk one of the freshly printed $19 bills. The clerk looks at it, holds it up to the light, then opens up the cash register, puts in the bill, and says "How do you want your change? Three sixes, or two nines?"


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:12 PM
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The clerk is still out the tobacco.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:15 PM
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The clerk is still out the tobacco.

And presumably some other merchandise as well, because he has been taking sixes and nines in payment. Numbnuts.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:18 PM
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Unless counterfeit bills are accepted tender thereabouts.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:19 PM
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I assumed he was printing his own sixes and nines.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:19 PM
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Of course, 211 would lead to runaway inflation, which means the clerk is likely not out much tobackee.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:25 PM
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213: you're assuming there's not a central hillbilly counterfeiting authority controlling the counterfeit money supply.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:26 PM
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I still don't get it. Is the joke that in hillbilly country, both hillbillies and general store owners are morons? Or that even a dumb hillbilly is smarter than a general store owner? Or that counterfeiting money is so widespread in hillbilly country that everyone is doing it? Is there some widely known general store ownership/counterfeit money/hillbilly backstory?

Everything I do know about hillbillies comes from reading "Barney Google and Snuffy Smith."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:28 PM
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I guess you don't trust patriotic Americans to free themselves from the shackles of federal fiat money, Eggplant.

(I just accidentally typed "fiat monkey", which is cracking me right up. That monkey ain't backed by gold!)


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:29 PM
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215: it's not a joke. It's a parable.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:30 PM
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If I contemplate it long enough I'll acheive enlightenment?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:31 PM
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Or at least you'll start purchasing real gold monkeys as a hedge against the collapse of the fiat monkey system.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:33 PM
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219: OOK OOK AAAH AAAH OOK


Posted by: OPINIONATED GLENN SILVERBECK | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:33 PM
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That hillbilly should've put his 19$s into shmoos.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:34 PM
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Have you tried pulling the T1 line out of the wall and doing whatever you think is best?

This. I keep having events where people shout at me through all-hands e-mail that "We haven't got such and such!" and I find that we have, in fact, got plenty of such and such, and this is because I put it there weeks ago, and the e-mail people haven't bothered to look.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:34 PM
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Fiat Monkey! Maybe teraz can tell us what it means.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:34 PM
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I'm tempted to implement the Brown M&M protocol, but I think it might be suicidey.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:35 PM
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216: Well of course the hillbilly economy would work if you had a CHCA, but that's just substituting one master for another. OTOH, if the community is small enough that each hillbilly's workmanship is recognizable they don't need any controlling authority.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:36 PM
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223: Fiat Panda!


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 2:50 PM
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226: You want to trust our currency needs to the Italians?! That's crazy talk.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:01 PM
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America, I can take care of ALL of your needs, no just currency ones.


Posted by: OPINIONATED THE SITUATION | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:09 PM
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You want to trust our currency needs to the Italians?! That's crazy talk.

Perhaps you could compose and perform a Lira-kill ballad on the subject?


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:13 PM
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Nice. But let's be franc: it could be a whole currency-themed album. Does "ruble" rhyme with "Michael Bublé"? Because we'll probably want him to guest on that track.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:28 PM
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It's a nostalgic-ironic song about the Fiat 126p, the main Polish produced car from the early seventies up into the early nineties, commonly known as the 'Maluch' (Baby) or more formally, the 'mały Fiat' (little Fiat). The song references the other national cares of the 'Demoludy) (People's Democracies) (Trabant, Dacia, Skoda, etc) and the whole late communist era. It really was very small, a bit smaller than a Mini. Fond memories of a Katowice-Gdansk trip with five of us (three kids, two adults) in one of those things. Not so fond later memories of traveling in the back seat as an adult. The group, 'Big Cyc' (Big Tits), is a well known Polish pop/rock band.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:33 PM
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Further to 230: we'll want to track it in Canada; their recording studios boast Auto-Toonie.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:34 PM
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You can mark him down for that zlot.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:40 PM
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Megan, please come back and put an end to this punning madness.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:41 PM
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234: Don't fence me Yen, Halford.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:50 PM
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Unrelated, but recently I found myself in a butcher shop in Tripoli. After placing my order, it came time to pay, and I realized I had no idea how to proceed with the transaction. Anyway, it all worked out, and I learned a valuable lesson that day. Dinar: it's what's for beef.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 3:51 PM
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Christ, Stanley, did you suffer a head injury or something? These are just getting worse and worse.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:02 PM
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231: My friend drove a Lada when she lived in Budapest.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:12 PM
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237: You think those are bhat? I've got lats more.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:40 PM
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People here might just threaten you with violence for your awful puns, Stanley, but in Southeast Asia they'll take a baht to your dong for riel.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:43 PM
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Ooh, the rare and exotic pwunage!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:46 PM
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239 doesn't count as pwnage, if that's what you mean. 240 was a triple pun, and included the correct spelling of "baht".


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 4:56 PM
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Mark my words. If this doesn't stop, I'll have to pound somebody.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 5:14 PM
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After I take a lek, I'll knock you to ruble.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 5:16 PM
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Oh yeah? Yuan whose army?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 5:21 PM
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Ouch. These are really making me krone.


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 5:46 PM
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And then I saw her pay. Now I've a bolivar.


Posted by: Los Monkees de Venezuela | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 5:46 PM
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219 reminds me that the next short lived TV series to be remade ought to be Tales of the Gold Monkey. I loved that show.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 6:07 PM
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245: With my dong alone.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-21-10 6:10 PM
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I would have joined in earlier but I was having a kip.

Is the joke that in hillbilly country, both hillbillies and general store owners are morons? Or that even a dumb hillbilly is smarter than a general store owner? Or that counterfeiting money is so widespread in hillbilly country that everyone is doing it?

The third, I think. And the shopowner may not be out the tobacco if he's then able to bank the counterfeits at the First National Bank of Squirrel Stump, TN. The hillbilly, on the other hand, has been foiled: the whole reason he's only buying the tobacco (rather than something more valuable like moonshine, black powder, or ephedrine) is because he wants to get real money in exchange for his counterfeits.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-22-10 2:03 AM
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These puns are doing my head in. If you keep it up I'll have to find a shrink and go into therupee.


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 10-22-10 2:47 AM
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To be quite franc, it's making me de-lira-ious.


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 10-22-10 2:50 AM
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I hate to sound like I'm schilling, but the guy who sings this song about currencies is quite the kroner.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10-22-10 3:23 AM
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