Monthly Archives: September 2008

Congress Rejects Wall Street Bailout Plan

Yesterday, Congress rejected the $700 billion Wall Street bailout proposal, and I for one am thankful that the politicians are actually showing some will power and acting in the interests of the people instead of the Wall Street people. Dennis Kucinich once again brought that heat and put it down forĀ  working and middle class Americans in his speech on the House floor.

The Bushies are proposing using $700 billion in taxpayer money to bailout the Wall Street CEOs who got us into this mess in the first place, effectively letting them off the hook with zero accountability for their terrible decisions and putting the burden on us, the people. Instead of talking about using tax payer dollars to bailout Wall Street as if that is the only option, why don’t we use that money to bailout the taxpayers themselves, by helping them pay off their mortgages?

I thought Mike Whitney’s analysis of the situation on CounterPunch was pretty dope and insightful. He states:

“The reason the system is exploding is because the various financial institutions have been allowed–via deregulation–to act as banks and create as much credit as they choose without a sufficient capital base. When one reads about massive deleveraging, this relates directly to the fact that under-capitalized businesses were operating with too much debt in relationship to their capital. That’s it in a nutshell; forget about the CDOs, the MBSs, the CDS and the whole alphabet soup of derivatives garbage. They were all inserted into the system so Wall Street landsharks could expand credit without supervision and balance trillions of dollars of debt on the back of a one dollar bill. This is why Paulson wants to suspend the rules which would bring credibility and trust back to the system. After all, that might impinge on Wall Street’s ability to enrich itself at the public’s expense.”

It is actually a block of very fired up Republican legislators, as well as progressive Dems like Kucinich and Oakland’s Barbara Lee, who pushed to defeat the bill. What’s even crazier to me is the fact that when I read all the analysis of the situation, I’ve been finding myself feeling the comments made by Republican legislators who voted in opposition to the plan way more than the lame ass Democrats like Nancy Pelosi who are calling for the parties to unite in passing it. For example, Darryl Issa, R-Riverside County, states that “This is a manufactured crisis…the administration already has the tools it needs to inject banks with capital, [which would be] every bit as effective as the bailout.”

We’re in for some crazy times, ya’ll. Brace yourselves.


Troy Davis

Yesterday, the US Supreme Court delayed the scheduled execution of Troy Davis, a Georgia resident convicted of killing a police officer in 1989. Strong evidence suggests that Davis is in fact innocent, and the court will now review the case this Monday, 9/29, to decide if he is to be granted a new trial. The stay of execution came two hours before he was scheduled to be killed, so it was a huge celebration for us anti-death penalty folks in Georgia, with a series of what were supposed to be vigils across the state turning into celebratory events.

However, the fight is not over. Regardless of your views on the death penalty, the sketchy evidence in this case at least warrants a new trial. The Cheddar Box urges folks to please take action by clicking on the link below and following the instructions:

Troy has another week to live, and it is another week for us to fight hard and hope. We will not stand by and let the state of Georgia kill an innocent man in our names.

Cheddar Jams 9.23.08

I gotta say, man, I think 2008 has been a helluva year musically. Here’s some jams I’ve been loving recently:

Blu & Mainframe (aka Johnson&Jonson) ~ “Bout It Bout It”

This Johnson&Jonson album is incredible. Blu’s spit and Mainframe’s beats are pure butter.

TV On The Radio ~ “Golden Age”

I’m a huge TVOTR fan after seeing them kill it live at the Fillmore last year. Their new album, Dear Science, is their best one yet in my opinion. Big ups to subtly political Black rockers from Brooklyn (and one talented White guy)! This video is bananas.

Young Jeezy ~ “Put On”

What can I say? I just really enjoy Jeezy albums. The man’s voice sounds like a force of nature and he’s got bookoo swag to back it up. This video and single have been out for awhile but it still goes hard. Also peep the dope interview he just did with the folks at HipHopDX.

Ramit Sethi: What You Can Do About Today’s Economy

I periodically read Ramit Sethi’s blog, I Will Teach You To Be Rich, to figure out ways to save money and stack money, instead of the usual overdraft fees charged for overspending k cheddar’s ironically empty checking account. In light of all the crazy economic talk in the headlines and Young Jeezy albums these days, Ramit’s recent video is insightful. Bottom line: save your money, folks! I need to get better at this also, so I’m dilligently trying to tap into my innate Chinese money saving abilities.

For his full post on the matter, go here.

Stephen Chow Directing “Green Hornet”

Stephen Chow is set to both star in and direct the new “Green Hornet” flick. Fuckin right! He will star as Kato, the role made famous back in the day by Bruce Lee. I’m a huge Chow fan so this is pretty dope news, but I remember the Kato character as being pretty one dimensional “silent Asian assassin,” so I hope they flesh him out a little bit more.

Gene Upshaw

I’ve been spending way too much time micromanaging my fantasy football team lately, and one cool thing that anyone who’s been watching the games probably noticed is the fact that the league is honoring former Oakland Raider Gene Upshaw, who passed away about a month ago now, on 8/20/08. Every player will be wearing either a patch on their jersey or a decal on their helmets with his initials “GU” and number 63.

On top of being a Hall of Fame player, what’s interesting about Upshaw is that he was the director of the National Football League Player’s Association (NFLPA), the labor union that represents the players in the NFL, until his death.

Dave Zirin has really gotten me to look at professional sports as a labor struggle, with the athletes as labor and the billionaire team owners as management, so I appreciate Gene Upshaw not only for repping the city of Oakland but also for being such an active member of the union, and the labor struggle within the world of pro-football. RIP.

Wall Street Ridiculousness

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Allow Jon Stewart and the Daily Show writers to explain our current state of Wall Street ridiculousness. The government is essentially socializing the financial sector with the buyouts of mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the recent $85 billion government buyout of the world’s biggest insurance company, AIG, giving the government 80% ownership of the company. So, they allow our tax dollars to go towards bailing out rich corporate types making terrible decisions, but they won’t allow us to have a single payer national health care plan? Bananas, that’s what that is.

Read about some solutions to the ridiculousness over at CounterPunch.