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nobody's little weasel


September 19th, 2008

My personal shit just doesn't seem worth posting about- this does. @ 10:28 pm

I feel: drained drained

Dear United States, Welcome to the Third World!

It's not every day that a superpower makes a bid to transform itself into a
Third World nation, and we here at the World Bank and the International
Monetary Fund want to be among the first to welcome you to the community of
states in desperate need of international economic assistance. As you
spiral into a catastrophic financial meltdown, we are delighted to respond
to your Treasury Department's request that we undertake a joint stability
assessment of your financial sector. In these turbulent times, we can
provide services ranging from subsidized loans to expert advisors willing
to perform an emergency overhaul of your entire government.

As you know, some outside intervention in your economy is overdue. Last
week -- even before Wall Street's latest collapse -- 13 former finance
ministers convened at the University of Virginia and agreed that you must
fix your "broken financial system." Australia's Peter Costello noted that
lately you've been "exporting instability" in world markets, and Yashwant
Sinha, former finance minister of India, concluded, "The time has come. The
U.S. should accept some monitoring by the IMF."

We hope you won't feel embarrassed as we assess the stability of your
economy and suggest needed changes. Remember, many other countries have
been in your shoes. We've bailed out the economies of Argentina, Brazil,
Indonesia and South Korea. But whether our work is in Sudan, Bangladesh or
now the United States, our experts are committed to intervening in national
economies with care and sensitivity.

We thus want to acknowledge the progress you have made in your evolution
from economic superpower to economic basket case. Normally, such a process
might take 100 years or more. With your oscillation between free-market
extremism and nationalization of private companies, however, you have
successfully achieved, in a few short years, many of the key hallmarks of
Third World economies.

Your policies of irresponsible government deregulation in critical sectors
allowed you to rapidly develop an energy crisis, a housing crisis, a credit
crisis and a financial market crisis, all at once, and accompanied (and
partly caused) by impressive levels of corruption and speculation.
Meanwhile, those of your political leaders charged with oversight were
either napping or in bed with corporate lobbyists.

Take John McCain, your Republican presidential nominee, whose senior staff
includes half a dozen prominent former lobbyists. As he recently put it, "I
was chairman of the [Senate] Commerce Committee that oversights every part
of the economy." No question about it: Your leaders' failure to notice the
damage done by irresponsible deregulation was indeed an oversight of epic
proportions.

Now you are facing the consequences. Income inequality has increased, as
the rich have gotten windfalls while the middle class has seen incomes
stagnate. Fewer and fewer of your citizens have access to affordable
housing, healthcare or security in retirement. Even life expectancy has
dropped. And when your economic woes went from chronic to acute, you
responded -- like so many Third World states have -- with an extensive
program of nationalizing private companies and assets. Your mortgage giants
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are now state owned and controlled, and this
week your reinsurance giant AIG was effectively nationalized, with the
Federal Reserve Board seizing an 80% equity stake in the flailing company.

Some might deride this as socialism. But desperate times call for desperate
measures.

Admittedly, your transition to Third World status is far from over, and it
won't be painless. At first, for instance, you may find it hard to get used
to the shantytowns that will replace the exurban sprawl of McMansions that
helped fuel the real estate speculation bubble. But in time, such
shantytowns will simply become part of the landscape. Similarly, as
unemployment rates continue to rise, you will initially struggle to find a
use for the expanding pool of angry, jobless young men. But you will
gradually realize that you can recruit them to fight in a ceaseless round
of armed conflicts, a solution that has been utilized by many other Third
World states before you. Indeed, with your wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,
you are off to an excellent start.

Perhaps this letter comes as a surprise to you, and you feel you're not
fully ready to join the Third World. Don't let this feeling concern you.
Though you may never have realized it, you've been preparing for this
moment for years.

rbrooks@latimescolumnists.com
 
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Comments

 
[User Picture Icon]
From:lucidstar
Date:September 22nd, 2008 11:22 pm (UTC)
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Is it bad/ sad that the current state of our country is actually making me feel more apathetic than activist-y? (Sorry, couldn't find the word so I made one up.) I feel like we're just doomed so what the hell is the point of even trying anymore.

Maybe I'll start giving a damn again once I'm bare-foot and pregnant in the kitchen. *sigh*
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From:johhnymayhem
Date:December 2nd, 2008 08:41 am (UTC)
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And the first post I see here is political, how charming.

Fuck the World Bank, they do shit like sponsor the Three Gorges Dam. 1.13 million residents have to relocate? Pssh, fuck those guys, GTFO.
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From:malaika02
Date:December 2nd, 2008 09:11 am (UTC)
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Not to mention the extinction of the Yangtze river dolphin, apparently. Unacceptable!

Most of my posts are friends-only, though I haven't been updating much lately... I'll add you in case you want to see more.
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From:johhnymayhem
Date:December 2nd, 2008 09:22 am (UTC)
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Whhhhhat the fuck? I had no idea there was a dolphin in a river.

I think I'd be eager to see more. >.>
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From:malaika02
Date:December 2nd, 2008 09:26 am (UTC)
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Ohhh, I'm glad you pick up on my innuendo. ;)
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From:johhnymayhem
Date:December 2nd, 2008 09:37 am (UTC)
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I'm quite perverted and my mind swims in the gutter. ..if you enjoy that kinda of thing, then hey, I'm your guy, apparently.

For instance, I would've tried something lame like "I'll give you something to pick up.." but that doesn't quite work. I suppose there could be "I'll pick you up.. and fuck you against the wall.." but that's a) too direct for us meeting so soon and b) too long; that stuff works better when it's short and sweet.

-_- <-- embarrassment.. can't believe myself at times.. kind of face.
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From:malaika02
Date:December 2nd, 2008 09:41 am (UTC)
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Hahahaha. I like your faces, and your awkward sexual comebacks. We'll get along just fine. ^-^
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From:johhnymayhem
Date:December 2nd, 2008 09:44 am (UTC)
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Rest assured I'm very awkward sexually. Well, I suppose I could've just ended that sentence at 'awkward.'
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From:malaika02
Date:December 2nd, 2008 09:52 am (UTC)
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*giggles* I like the cross-post flirting we've got going on here.
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From:johhnymayhem
Date:December 2nd, 2008 10:05 am (UTC)
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heh, yeah. It's been a long while.. very nostalgic for me. ..how odd, what an odd thing to be nostalgic over. Not only do I enjoy this, I enjoy the odd feeling that is being attracted to someone so soon over the darn internets.

I'm glad you're not too much younger than me.
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From:malaika02
Date:December 2nd, 2008 10:16 am (UTC)
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I know what you mean. I have the most random LJ hookup stories, don't even get me started!

You're what, 26? Yes, 24 (or 25, if you ask my mom) probably seems a lot more sane considering your current situation. :p
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From:johhnymayhem
Date:December 2nd, 2008 10:27 am (UTC)
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lol I'm embarassed at my LJ hookups. There's this one community where my hormones got the best of me as they do and I ended up cybering with a couple different people.. and then as time went on got to see who/what kind of people they were.. and so basically now it's just, "Ugh, can't believe I did that with her." Oh so embarrassing.

Someone one LJ hookup led to unbelievably grand phone sex, wee.. I was all set to meet her, but then she was like, "Remember how I told you I'm 18? Yeah, I'm 16." O_O More moral quandaries.. quite related to that thread I showed you. God damn. And god damn do I still have a lot of lust for her anyway.

I wasn't necessarily considering that.. just nice to meet someone close to my age for a change. I keep running into people younger than me; a lot of current crushes have been on girls 5-6 years younger than me. Fuck I think the one's only 18 going on 19.. but so fucking adorable I'd fuck that in an instant if she allowed me. -_-

I don't know why all this is spilling forth.. I feel like I'm unloading you, and here we just met. Sorry.. I guess I've been holding back a lot of things for some time now.

...my mom also thought me the wrong age. We were at a Sam's club, some vendor asked my age or something. Later.. "Uh, mom, I didn't want to correct you in front of that guy.. I'm 26, not 27."
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From:malaika02
Date:December 2nd, 2008 10:33 am (UTC)
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I have some similar stories that I might get into at some point.... but just to say, no need to be embarrassed. Feel free to share whatever weird shit you have going on at the moment-- it's nice to know I'm not the only one with issues like this.

I must go to sleep now though, so I can wake up and "teach." Ack. Have a good night!
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From:johhnymayhem
Date:December 2nd, 2008 10:35 am (UTC)
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Sleep well.
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From:malaika02
Date:December 3rd, 2008 02:49 am (UTC)
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So hey, do you do Facebook and all that? Mine is here if you feel like adding me: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=22900808&ref=profile
It's not quite as exciting as my LJ- more public- but more "real" in a way.
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From:johhnymayhem
Date:December 3rd, 2008 06:45 am (UTC)
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I don't really do facebook, but I can add you all the same. You're welcome to add me on AIM, by the by. If you're usually on around this time and as late as you were the other night, you'll often run into me.

nobody's little weasel