False Patriotism Day

 Well I survived False Patriotism Day. Don’t get me wrong, its sad that 3,000 people died that day, but lets put it in perspective.

1. Iraq War: 4,474 (and slowly creeping)
2. Afghanistan War: 1,776 (and not so creeping)
3. Dead due to drunk drivers: Approximately 130,000 since 2001 
4. Dead due to lack of Health Insurance: +45,000 PER YEAR (approximately half a million people dead since 2001)
5. Trillions spent on a war machine and on a Police State level worth of infrastructure.

We laughed at the USSR in the 80’s because of the checkpoints, pat downs, and abridged rights. I think Russia is laughing at us now (the terrorists certainly are).

While giving away our rights, the same people screaming NEVAR FORGET are the ones screaming they don’t want healthcare for all US citizens.

I think our priorities are screwed. We are declaring wars on multiple countries for the death of 3,000 (and at least one of the countries – Iraq, had nothing to do with it). Yet we wont take care of our own people when 15 times more people die yearly from lack of health insurance.

http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2009/09/new-study-finds-45000-deaths-annually-linked-to-lack-of-health-coverage/

This doesn’t even really get into the lost of our freedoms because we are scared. I would rather take my chance that I get killed in a terrorist attack then to lose my freedom (3,000 people in 10 years, you have a bigger chance to be struck by lightning). Oh, and lets not even get into the idea we have been “protected” and thats why there haven’t been more attacks. Our new agencies only take our freedoms, they haven’t protected us.

Yep, ranting this morning to make up for the hypocritical BS that occurred yesterday.

edit: Evidently I woke up in rare form today.
 

Oh, I know why I woke up on the wrong side of the bed, a bit of anxiety due to interview today. 
I had people ask if I disliked working for my office, that is actually farthest from the truth. This was the only position I have seen in the local government area that I thought I might like as much (with more pay and less travel). Otherwise I am fairly satisfied at my current job (unless more pay cuts occur, then there may be issues).

Bailout bullshit

I say here and now that this whole bailout is bullshit its a last desperate gasp of the corrupt administration and rich backers. I have been reading some articles and there are non banking institutions who are claiming money from the government (including Rudy Guiliani’s company wanting money to help with the bailout). 

Not a single middle class American will be helped by this bill. Sure everyone is going to claim it saves our middle class by saving our economic capabilities. That is bullshit, it wont save any mortgages, it will only give the rich more money.  I keep hearing how the market will take care of itself, evidently it wont and that was all bullshit. Does any of the poor or middle class get health insurance, no. Does anyone get help with their mortgages or credit card debt, no. Is there more jobs, no. This is the same trickle down theory that caused this bullshit.

Our best option would be to let everything crash and then rebuild. Yes it would be hard, but maybe what came out of the ashes would not be a house of cards. None of this fixes the inherent problems of wall street or banks, its just a “get out of jail free” card.

I have a feeling I will have a lot more rants about this coming up.

Rolling the dice

There are many things wrong with where I work, and from what I am told those wrong things extend to the public accounting profession in general. Its not that they are necessarily doing something illegal (although the example I will talk about later is definitely against the tax code), its just the greed and drive for money that bothers me

A little over a week ago we had a tax class for all the first year tax accountants. It dealt with how to handle mortgage interest, and other Schedule A writeoffs. It is actually a long convoluted story, but I will just shorten it down.  The mortgage interest that is deductible on Schedule A is only from an original home loan (or combination of two homes), and is limited to 1.1 million dollars. Any interest on the value exceeding the 1.1 million dollars is not deductible.

If you get refinanced, a second mortgage, or any other additional loan (such as home equity), that interest is NOT deductible under the Internal Revenue Code. Nor can you claim any deduction on interest exceeding that first 1.1 million dollars. However, our trainer told us that we will in fact make those deductions, no matter what we thought was going on.

I brought up that I noticed several clients were claiming $200,000+ on mortgage interest per year, and not even counting if they were home equity or second mortgages, that total of interest is far beyond the value of 1.1 million dollars worth of homes, so far in excess that there is no way they are only claiming for that value (the most you really should see is about $100,000 and thats only if they get really hosed by the bank). He told me that no firm would check into those numbers, and that I should just set the deductions up. He even admitted that the IRS would have full legal reason to audit and charge fines because it is against the tax codes. Yet he told us we should do it. He said its worth “rolling the dice” against getting an IRS audit.

I did bring up that it sounded like what we were doing goes against the AICPA codes of conduct. He pointed out there is nothing illegal about taking the clients at their word (when obviously they are lying, but as long as we don’t have obvious direct proof it doesn’t matter) and that it was worth it both for the client to risk the audit, and for us to keep these clients, to continue. It all came down to profit for the firm. That was the day I was positive I didn’t want to do public accounting.

Somehow I felt slimy, and wondered if lawyers were above me on the ladder of social mores (there is a lot more to talk about, even worse stories. I will post later about those).

Hypocrisy

I was watching t.v. and saw that they finally approved Plan B. I am very happy to see it, anything to help prevent unwanted pregnancies is good, especially if its not invasive abortion. However, I noticed several fundie/conservative groups are up in arms about it.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t necessarily blame people being against abortion. I can understand the thought that human life is inviolate, its just we disagree on when life starts. That is ok. My issue is these same Christian fundies who spout how human life, even one, is important, yet I don’t see any of these Christian Fundies objecting to us bombing another country, or objecting to the military being used for pretty much anything.

Fundie churches are like this to. I have never heard of a Fundie church (or honestly any Christian church, except certain Catholic Dioceses, ever objecting to our war in Iraq. The same churches that spout how important it is to save even a single human life that is lost to abortion, doesn’t even raise an eyebrow at us killing other people in other countries. The last time I read the bible, Jesus was pretty damn clear about not raising your fist against another, turn the other cheek, Thou Shalt Not Kill, and many other obvious things that indicated taking any human lives was wrong. Yet all these conservative “Christian” people are pro-Iraq. I don’t think Jesus approves of us going to another country period, hell he didn’t believe in protecting himself, he certainly would never agree to invading another country, even to give our country safety.

What is worse is when Christians start quoting things from the Old Testament. They start saying an “Eye for an Eye” and how the Isrealites were allowed to defend themselves. Well if they believe in the old testament then they should still be Jewish. Jesus supposedly changed all the rules, including sacrifices, warfare, etc. You can’t just pick and choose from the bible to match your need. Either you follow the teachings of peace and love that Jesus taught, making you a Christian, or you follow the old testament and your Jewish (well that is a simplification, I realize you need to follow more then just the Old Testament to be Jewish, but most Christians are not very informed and get confused of you start talking about the Torah, etc.).

I get confused, I know many Christians, about 1/10th of them object to war (the rest are either pro-war/Iraq or at the very least it doesn’t effect them either way), and half of that is they only object to Iraq, not warfare in general. It kind of turns my stomach when these same people claim to follow the teachings of such a gentle man as Jesus. If a Christian truly followed the path of Jesus, they would stand out of the pack and would garner my respect. Its funny, most of the people I know who protest the war are hippy/pagan types, types you don’t normally see in church (although there are a few that are church goers I am sure), yet those that proclaim their faith (and who drive huge, expensive, gas guzzlers and work for questionable places, but this is a rant for later), are the ones that object to Plan B birth control pills, but don’t even blink an eye when people are killed in Iraq (not even getting into the children killed by us in Iraq, just talking anyone).

This is why I am a Deist. Yes I believe in God/Divine, and yes I believe every single religion in the world has lost the true message in exchange for power/prestige/riches. If there is a rapture, I have a feeling all those who believe they are saved are going to be the ones burning in hell (oh, and later will be a rant on the hubris of those who have the “In case of rapture, this car will be unmanned” bumper stickers).

I would do more, but this is probably long enough right now.

WTF?

I was watching the news. Evidently Bush is passing a tax cut for 70Billion dollars through the House and may pass the Senate today.

The Republicans are touting it as a victory. I am just confused on why we are cutting taxes when the government is spending an ever increasing amount on military and “Homeland Security” so this means the government has to borrow more?

In addition how can any normal person think this is good. Here is the breakdown.

If you make $1,000,000 a year, the tax saves you $43,000
If you make $50,000  it saves you $43

So once again its a tax cut for the rich. They always say that if you cut taxes it allows people to spend more on the economy. I don’t necessarily doubt this, except to say that if you tax cut on the rich, it wont increase the economy as much as if you tax cut $70 Billion off the poor.

The rich already don’t have to spend all their money monthly. There is no guarantee that they will spend all their money on “investing into the economy”. However, if you cut $70 Billion off the poor and middle class (up to 50,000, if you make more then 50,000 your not middle class) then they will end up spending ALL of that money back into the economy, considering they don’t have all this extra money to stash, they need all the money and they need to spend it.

It just seems another “for the rich” issue.

Fuck I really want to move out of this piece of shit country. Sad part is, I actually do love the Country, I fucking hate our rich elite government. However, I am not seeing how any changes are really going to occur, unless its our government bankrupting itself.

United 93

So wtf is up with the movie United 93. I have a few objections.

1. We don’t know the real story, we have a few cell phone communications, by no means could we possibly know that the way shit went down, actually went down that way. So in my opinion its about as truthful to say its a “TRUE STORY” as it is to say that the South won the civil war.

2. Am I the only one horrified that Hollywood is profiting off such a horrible tragedy. It would be different if all profits for United 93 were pledged to the families of United 93, but they are not. Its purely Hollywood profit on a horrible situation.

3. Propaganda. Its a propaganda piece designed to re-stoke our outrage. Its purely a heart tugger meant to reassure us our war on terrorism and Islam is true.

That last part is what bothers me most. Our war in Iraq has the least support ever, as does our support for the prick of a president we have in George Bush. Yet now comes out the story of United 93. Don’t get me wrong, I dont think Hollywood made the movie as a propaganda piece, but I think the media and ultimately the government is pushing it. Three different news stations I have watched are now promo-ing on how its an accurate story that everyone should watch.

I firmly believe our shadow government has happened on the idea to try and reinvigorate our desire for revenge and to shore up support for Iraq and possible war with Iran by trying to “remind us” why we are doing this war.

Funny thing is, it only reminds me that Saddam had absolutely nothing to do with 9-11 and in actuality, even with as horrible as he was, he kept the Middle east, and especially Iraq stable. There was no home for the terrorists in his country and even though he saber-rattled, he had actually obeyed all the edicts. Our oil prices were lower, terrorism attacks were lower and our approval in the world was higher.

We were totally in the right with Afghanistan, but seeing as we never even finished there, the fact that Osama can avoid the most powerful country in the world and the fact we are getting our asses kicked in Iraq and we should pull out makes me believe its totally feasible that this piece of crap movie is being greenlighted and pushed so hard by our government in another not-so subtle attempt at manipulating us.

The problem is, Americans are sheep and they will follow where the big men point.

WTF?

This morning I got up and started channel surfing. Of course there are a ton of religious programs. Four of the programs I watched stated we are in a religious war and we need to fight it out. One of them (Jimmy Swaggert) said the Koran is not written about love and that we need to end the religion. JS was quoting we need to go to war with Muslims in order to fulfill biblical prophecies. The other three Fundies were quoting almost the same thing.

So, did I read a unreal copy of the bible. I am pretty damn sure Jesus said love your neighbor, judge not, and obey the ten commandments (one of which is Do not Kill, not “do not kill a christian” just do not kill). 

What the fuck is wrong with Christianity (not everyone follows this, but almost unilaterally the fundie preachers do). Yes, once again I am reminded why I am a deist, not because I don’t believe in god (I do), and not even that I don’t believe in Jesus (I do, but I also believe god approached us through buddhism, hinduism, etc, etc, not just Christianity) but because organized religion is the bane of real spirituality.

Organized religion is about power, not about spirituality. Its about arbitrary rules that Jesus or the ten commandments never said. Hell Jesus boiled it down to one commandment. Love your neighbor. This “go to war, burn the homosexuals because its wrong, and perform the death penalty” type attitude is the opposite of anything I read from any of the prophets, but especially opposite of Jesus.

My opinion:

Christianity is the anti-Christ, leading poor hapless unthinking individuals in the opposite direction Jesus preached. Love and forgiveness has disappeared into a dark pit of capitalism, rigidity, and pride.

I am pretty sure Jesus preached that the biggest responsibility of man is his fellow man. However 99% of Christians I have ever met don’t give regularly to the poor, let alone do what Jesus said (when he told his followers give away your riches, if someone asks for your shirt, you give it to them).

Christianity as a general rule (there are exceptions) is the most hypocritical of religions I have ever seen, Jewish, Muslim and Buddhists I have met actually follow their religion closer then most “american christians”. If you don’t give to the poor, if you don’t believe in loving your neighbor and not judging and if you are not against killing others no matter what reason (talking Iraq and even Death penalty here) then you are a hypocrite.

Oh, I am feeling a rant coming (lol not like this isn’t already a mini-rant) so I will stop.

WHAT THE FUCK, 3 of the 4 fundies just said Islam is our enemy. GOD DAMN HYPOCRITES.

Fucked Up

http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/2255.html

An Army Captain was found guilty of killing a wounded Iraqi they mistakenly thought was an insurgent. Now it wasn’t even that the Iraqi was killed accidently in the first salvo. They had stopped the car, killed one person and the wounded Iraqi was laying there bleeding. The Captain walked up, put the pistol to the Iraqi’s head and killed him “because he thought he would die anyways”.

How is that not the same as what we tried the Nazi’s for doing when they would take American prisoners and take them out to just shoot them? The Iraqi could not fight back (hell it wasn’t even an insurgent).

In the end, all the Army did to him was to kick him out of the service, no jail time, no other negative punishment. Considering how “noble and good” we are supposed to be, how is this any better then what Saddam, Hitler, Ho Chi Minh or any of them did.

Fucking hypocrites.

Fucked up religious right wing republicans

This morning (after having woke up at 415am) I was watching tv. A scene for the 700 Club came on and Pat Robertson was talking about President Bush helping America. It then dawned on me how fucked up that was. Nobody who claims to be christian should be supporting this war. I believe distinctly the bible says “Thou shalt not kill” it doesn’t say “Thou shalt not kill unless its an arab or a terrorist”.

Also thinking back to the new testament. It is my firm belief that Jesus would be horrified that anyone who claims to follow god or his teachings would go and kill someone, let alone to another country to do it. I believe he said “turn the other cheek” (and he didn’t mean only once). He even died rather then fight back. Yet hardcore christians support the “War on Terror”, hypocritical bastards are going to burn in their own hell.

Sorry, was just overwhelmed with disgust with our conservative “christian” brigade. Claim to follow jesus and the bible yet wage war (no matter the reason, Jesus didn’t say it was ok to kill a bunch of arabs if the twin towers got destroyed).

Weirdly enough, the only public leader (not Mother Teresa) who has ever abided by Jesus’s code wasn’t even a Christian. Rather that person was a Hindu (Ghandi for those of you who don’t realize who I am talking about). I think its damn funny that a Hindu man (great man at that) is more “Christian” then any Christian I know who supports this damn “war on terror”.

Man, Pat Robertson and all of you “Christians” out there supporting the war are fucked up. I would suggest you all go read the bible again or at least don’t claim to follow Jesus.