Healthcare in Pottersville

This feature from CBC’s The National the other night will likely be condemned by so-called “conservatives” who pine for privatization of the healthcare system and practically drool at the prospect of people getting ruthlessly screwed over by insurance companies.

Good luck with that.

As I’ve said many time before in comments directed to right-wing asshats, if you think the American system is so bloody terrific, then please move there as quickly as possible and spare the rest of us the acute annoyance of your endless moaning and whining.

And Now For Something…

Completely Python

I’ve been somewhat distracted over the past few days by the new Monty Python documentary “Almost the Truth” made by the son of Terry Jones that the Bravo! network has been showing, providing as it does wonderful insights into the iconic comedy troupe that I completely idolized as a kid and while this little clip isn’t from that program, it gives some of the flavour of its irreverent reflection on its history and general silliness…

It’s a bit strange watching the films and seeing the clips again, as all the lines come immediately back to mind — especially seeing as I have difficulty remembering much of anything at all these days. As kids however we used to re-enact many of these skits by heart, sometimes even in the shower room after a brutal and invariably filthy game of rugby then doing our best high-pitched, screechy pepperpot imitations to crack one another up…

Anyway, if you want to share your own Python memories, embed favourite Python clips from YouTube in the comments or whatever, feel free to do so

Adventures with Iggy: Sweater Guy

I really don’t know what to say…

But here’s a question for the kids: What does “Big Bear” think about coercive interrogation in the context of a “lesser evil” moral analysis vis-à-vis the global war on terrorism?

Well, give Ignatieff points for not frightening the children… I guess.

Government-Sachs

Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, and Rob Johnson, former chief economist, US Senate Banking Committee, discuss bailouts made to “too big to fail” companies.

How can you take that in and not be completely amazed at the audacious piracy of firms like Goldman-Sachs (a “great vampire squid” as Matt Taibbi so delightfully calls them) lining the pockets of their top executives at taxpayer expense from a bonus pool of funds roughly equivalent to the amount of money received as a “gift” via their AIG insurance policy (in effect, funded by the government) while simultaneously absorbing massive handouts from the Federal Reserve?

Kicking Ass & Taking Names

Good for Barney Frank! It’s simply amazing what American banks have gotten away with for years at the expense of consumers.

For example, check out this video report from the NYT/Frontline about the “card game” played by many banks (and credit unions) to profit handsomely from debit purchases that inadvertently go into overdraft.

I don’t believe that Canadian banks engage in this practice, but here’s a neat little trick they pull… waiting until you’re maxed out on your overdraft and then socking you with their monthly fee — which of course sends you past the bounds of your limit and then charging you a hefty penalty the “privilege” of paying their fee. That one always makes me laugh… albeit, mordantly.

WPITW: Orly Taitz Limbaugh!

This is great… Not only does Rush get inadvertently punked by railing against President Obama based on a fictional version of his doctoral thesis lifted from a parody website, but when he finally gets busted for doing so, he nonetheless stands by his prior bloviations on the ground they were entirely valid because… get this — there had to have been an element of truth in the comical spoof to have made it funny in the first place and therefore worthwhile satirizing. Hence… it was essentially TRUE (even though it wasn’t at all).

Now, whatever else you may think about Limbaugh, you’ve got to admit that was nicely played. Which, of course still doesn’t mitigate the fact he’s still an ignorant jackass and, as always, a big fat idiot.

Rassemblement des retraités de Nortel

This may draw flack from a lot of folks, but here goes… Stop already with this painfully forced bilingualism!

Here, watch this example, and then we’ll pick up things after the clip.

Look, we get that you can pretend to speak French (kind of… rather awkwardly, it has to be said — much in the same way that Harper muddles through on this score), but please — for the love of God, stop interjecting it in your speeches at every opportunity.

This redundant, French-English nonsense is just deeply silly and immensely annoying. For those of us without that much facility in French (or especially your particular version of it), these pandering linguistic diversions simply come across as pretentious affectations that are, quite frankly, weirdly alienating and immensely offputting.