Vive la Commune!
The Federal Reserve announced today that it plans to buy 1.2 trillion dollars in Mortgage backed securities and bonds – specifically it’s doubling it’s purchasing of the Freddie/Fannie debt and increasing it’s planned purchasing of mortgage backed securities from 5 to 700 billion…all this on top of buying 300 billion dollars in long term treasury bonds, all in the name of stimulating the economy.
The reaction? The dollar falls. Every time the government has stepped in and done something to “help” the economy this year, stocks take a hit; on Wall Street, there is no confidence in what government involvement will do. How can the Fed’s economists and fiscal leaders not see this?
There’s lots of news about the AiG snowball going on but I think we’ve fully hit the recriminations & masturbation segment of the news cycle. Everyone is now just posturing and trying to wring what they can out of situation, especially our increasingly populist government (which is fine – in the short term). However, did you know that rental car companies are now seeking a bailout?
Now, Avis Budget Group Inc., Hertz Global Holdings Inc. and other rental-car companies are lobbying Congress to allow them to use Troubled Asset Relief Program funds to finance new auto purchases. The House of Representatives included a clause in a TARP reform bill that it passed last week to give the government authority to back loans to rental-car companies and other fleet purchasers. The bill has now moved on to the Senate.
I’m waiting for one of the fast food companies to come begging for TARP scraps.
Oh, and IBM – please please please don’t buy Sun. Firstly, it’s a bad business idea – Sun isn’t the golden child that it was in the early part of the decade, okay? Second – I know you, I’ve worked for you, you’ll kill open office. And I don’t think I could go back to using Word, you know? (Actually they won’t really kill it – they’ll take it off the market*, rebrand it, and rerelease a gimped version of it 18 months later. I’m not bagging on IBM necessarily, but they acquire a LOT of companies, and most of those companies’ products, in my opinion, get digested pretty quickly.)
The country of Australia censors wikileaks – which for the record is the site with a link just to your right on this page. Why? For posting a list of websites banned by the Dutch. (…wtf?)
The Australian Communications and Media Authority added two Wikileaks pages to its censorship list: one for the Dutch Danish government’s secret index of banned child porn sites as well as Wikileaks’ press release about how the index was used and why the site was publishing it.
ACMA’s list is estimated to hold more than a thousand URLs currently and is distributed to Australian ISPs, which are required by law to make filters available to users.
Wikileaks, the net’s foremost site for leaked documents, responded by announcing the ban, writing “The first rule of censorship is that you cannot talk about censorship.”
The Australian government has recently been keen on trying to make all ISPs adhere to the ACMAs list. Hopefully it will fail miserably. In related news, the White House Chief Information Officer is back in his office after the FBI raided his office following the FBI arrest of his predecessor on corruption charges (and why is this the first I’ve heard of this?) Apparently, the investigation involves a alleged kickbacks over government tech contracts. Transparency in action.
The Vatican defends Papal stance rejecting condoms which involves Pope Benedict’s statements that distributing condoms “increases” the AIDS problem. Precisely what he said was this:
“You can’t resolve it with the distribution of condoms,” he said. “On the contrary, it increases the problem.”
Going to west Africa and exercising that kind of influence to tell people that condoms are bad and it makes the AIDS problem worse because of your stupid tiny minded political agenda is criminal. The only problem that is increased is that backwards fucking hegemony called Catholicism. I hope it crumbles, I hope it crumbles in his lifetime, on his watch.
He told Cameroon’s 31 bishops that Christians must fight for social justice and urged them to defend the traditional African family from the dangers of modernity and secularization. He also asked them to help protect the poor from the impact of globalization.
Benedict said that while the Catholic church in Africa is the fastest growing in the world, it faces competition from increasingly popular evangelical movements and “the growing influence of superstitious forms of religion.”
The German-born pope also said that exuberant African rites should not “obstruct” the liturgy of the Mass.
Ah yes, we wouldn’t want the new Catholics preserving their own culture now would we? It might get in the way of Catholicism becoming the dominant paradigm in their way of life, eh? The ‘dangers of modernity and secularization’ – which means anyone who questions this fucking German drug dealer pushing his Invisible Sky Daddy Crack. Cultural appropriation and lies to perpetuate itself and overwrite the native culture. Proof fucking positive that the Catholic Church hasn’t changed since the time of the Conquistadors, 500 years ago. (Don’t disregard the recurrence of a certain popular bullshit phrase – “Traditional American*koff*African Families” because we don’t know what that means.) Speaking of, a similar plan regarding condoms and misinformation was in effect for the last eight years in this country, with official sources saying “condoms – bad!” and look how that worked out. (The principle difference is that the Fundamentalist nutjobs fail to understand how this works. The Catholic Church perpetuates it’s own existence by discouraging birth control, as children brought up in a Catholic family tend to become Catholics. However, children brought up in a poor or minority family tend not to grow up to become Republicans, so the BushCo type strategy is ultimately self-defeating.)
* which will be interesting, given that it’s freeware.