Badtux the Snarky Penguin

In a time of chimpanzees, I was a penguin.

Religious fundamentalists are motivated by the sneaking suspicion that someone, somewhere, is having fun -- and that this must be stopped.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

The 3rd World is only a few blocks away

Poorer Americans have mortality rates similar to 3rd world hellholes. Poor Americans lack access to adequate health care, working schools, transportation, and healthful foods.

The obvious solution is that they should drag their sick, uneducated, car-less and fat behinds to the nearest Fortune 500 company and apply for a job as a senior vice president in charge of finance. The whole problem is that they're lazy. If they weren't so lazy, then they could be working hard behind a desk, doing the heavy work of lifting a phone and pressing computer keys, instead of doing those slothful jobs of cleaning bathrooms, digging ditches, stocking grocery shelves, pushing wheelbarrows full of concrete, and all those other lazy bum jobs like that which require no physical labor. I mean, those lazy poor people, they just sit around working instead of doing nothing like us successful business types, then they dare complain that we successful business types get tax breaks and they get, well, broken? How dare they!

- Badtux the Republican Penguin

Posted by: BadTux / 9/21/2005 12:27:00 PM  


Don't worry your pointly little beak, Penguin. Sure, the aftermath of Katrina will create tens of thousands of newly homeless permanent refugees, but there will be employment for them; all you have to do is follow the example we've set here in Seattle. Behold the magical power of Compassionate Conservatism! Glory!
# posted by Pope Horatio Tyrannosaurus Nixon Rex : 21/9/05 12:58 PM  

Looks like Hurricane Rita is about to create more...

# posted by Lab Kat : 21/9/05 1:36 PM  

Well I am sure George will find a way to "deal" with them. Like send them to Iraq. You realise that this is what he plans to do?
# posted by Ole Blue The Heretic : 21/9/05 7:34 PM  

Damn, I wish I could invent such deliciously nasty posts as you do. I need to take my sarcasm vitamins. You have my admiration sir. And you're so right.
# posted by mycroftdavis : 22/9/05 7:34 PM  

Do any of you have any frame of reference? Have you ever worked with those who truly are the lazy poor? There is a big difference between the working poor and those whose sole ambition is to have enough money left over from their habit to get a bus down to the welfare office to their "paycheck" which is exactly how they refer to it. Try working in or around social services before touting the poor people who could easily better themselves if they attempted to do so. If that wasn't true we'd all be poor. No one has to be poor. Get your act together, go to the local government agencies, which actually DO provide several services aimed at making productive citizens out of couch potatoes. Contact your local county offices for more information. The means are there but the will is not. The guy "working hard" behind the desk put his time in to get there and should get more respect than the dullard squeezing out babies to get more welfare. This kind of mentality is what has led to bumper stickers like the one that says "My kid can beat up your honor roll student". More people should try to be the honor roll student instead of ridiculing them.
# posted by Dr. Jimmy : 24/9/05 9:38 AM  

Well, I can't speak for anyone else here, Dr. Jimmy, but yes, I do have a frame of reference. I work in a school for homeless children.

Let's repeat that phrase, shall we? "School for Homeless Children." In America.

The kids here are from families that got thrown out on their asses for a variety of reasons, but the common thread amongst practically all of them is that the parents have jobs. Yes, that's right, they are employed. In several cases, both parents work, and they still can't afford to keep a roof over their heads.

So, you see, when I hear people blathering the typical "no one has to be poor," "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" line of Blame The Victim horseshit, it makes me just a teensy bit annoyed.
# posted by Aaron : 24/9/05 11:57 AM  

"Dr." Jimmy, I taught in an inner city school in Houston. You know, one of those neighborhoods full of poor people who (shudder) had no cars. All but one of my parents worked, most of them worked more than two jobs.

One day one of my students fell asleep in class. I asked him what was going on. He said he got home that night, and nobody was home, and the house was locked up. So he sat on the front porch. Until around midnight. Turns out, when I asked around, that the elderly aunt who was supposed to watch him after school had a heart attack and was hauled off to the hospital, where she died. His mother had left for work before he got up (around 6am), and she did not get home from her *THIRD* job until midnight, and she had no idea her kid was just sitting on the front porch all that time. Day care? You gotta be kidding. You can't afford day care on minimum wage. And minimum wage is all that anybody offers someone who spent her entire school career being taught by newly-minted teachers who don't know what they're doing and who stay there just long enough to learn how to teach, then leave to go to richer/better paying suburban districts. Lazy? Yeah, right. That's why she worked a minimum of 12 hours a day, 16 hours some days, because she was lazy, yessirree...

I gotta ask you, "Dr." Jimmy, do you know any poor people? Have you ever been poor yourself? If not, I gotta say what Shep said when he was standing in the ruins of New Orleans and was told "get some perspective" by Sean Hannity -- "this IS the perspective."

Badtux the "People who don't know what the shit they're talking about should just shut their bunghole" Penguin
# posted by BadTux : 24/9/05 2:21 PM  

It just goes to show us that having the second largest infant mortality rate of the industrialized nations just isn't working. We need to get up to FIRST, so those shiftless, lazy people will die as infants and not burden the rest of us with their povery.
Dr. Jimmy, you're an asshole.
# posted by Victory : 24/9/05 5:38 PM  

I gotta ask you, "Dr." Jimmy, do you know any poor people? Have you ever been poor yourself?

Yes, and yes. I was a foster parent for several years and my wife is a social worker. Most of you that commented after me mentioned people who are working which obviously excludes them from the lazy poor. Most of those I have come in contact with have had substance abuse issues, been unemployed, and pretty much unwilling to do anything to make their lives or the lives of their children better. This is clearly a cycle that must be broken, unfortunately no one wants to take a hard line and prevent them from reproducing. I was poor and had difficulty making ends meet for the first few years of marriage. We did not keep creating more mouths to feed that would go unfed and both of us went to college with grants from the government because of our income level. She has a Bachelor's Degree and is working with the child welfare department helping children abused and neglected by the ones who created them, which unfortunately is usually only one of the two involved in the creation. For every story of heartbreak I could give you two or three that could have been avoided if they had pulled themselves up by the bootstraps. It is not impossible. When I got married I had recently lost my job but I didn't just quit on myself. I continued to work hard to make my life better and even relocated 700 miles away in an effort to do so.

We gave up on foster care because it became clear that the agencies only cared about money and not helping the children. They ran like businesses which made me sick. These kids had this shitty life forced on them by idiots who couldn't control their reproductive impulses.

Victory, do you have any idea how many infants are doomed because they are born addicted to heroin, cocaine, or crystal meth? Is that the government's fault or the asshole that chooses to do that to themselves and their unborn? One of these fine citizens claimed that "my children are my world" after having them removed due to neglect and then refused to take the necessary steps to get "her world" back. You can call me an asshole all you want but my kids get what they need and alot of what they want and there's no way in the world there would ever be a need for Children and Youth to take them from me.

Again, to reiterate, the people you all referred to were obviously not lazy and were trying very hard to do the right things. Maybe they just needed some guidance or to move somewhere more economical. Also, my asking if anyone had a frame of reference was a sincere question because most of the time when I hear people defending the poor, they have never really met any, worked with any, or seen the effects on the children first hand.

A defeatist attitude and unchecked reproduction will just keep the wheel spinning.
# posted by Dr. Jimmy : 24/9/05 9:29 PM  

So let me get this straight, "Dr." Jimmy. You encountered some parents who were so lazy, negligent and dysfunctional that their children were removed from them and placed into foster care (i.e., less than 1% of poor parents), then you use that to tar *ALL* poor parents as lazy, negligent and dysfunctional? That's sick. That's just sick. You should be ashamed of yourself.

As for those splendiferous jobs out there for folks who are poorly educated, have no transportation, etc., why, they should all just go down to their local Fortune 500 company and apply for a job as a Vice President in charge of Finance. But they're just too lazy and shiftless to do that, what with working three minimum wage jobs and all in order to make ends meet.


- Badtux the "Callin' it like I see it" Penguin
# posted by BadTux : 25/9/05 9:33 AM  

PS: And oh BTW, "Dr." Jimmy, about the only place more economical to live than Houston (where I taught in the 3rd Ward) is, uhm... the graveyard?
# posted by BadTux : 25/9/05 9:37 AM  

then you use that to tar *ALL* poor parents as lazy, negligent and dysfunctional?

Where did you get that? Did you just skim my post or what? And there are many more places to live that are more economical than any major city. People like you see with tunnel vision. I live somewhere more economical than Houston. I can name about 50 communities near me that are more economical. I used to live in an extremely un-economical area outside Chicago. I moved.

It takes a will to succeed which you all seem to think the poor don't have. And if they don't have a will to succeed then why are so they so important to you? Nothing will ever change if they don't want it to. If they are the third generation of a poverty stricken family then they shouldn't be creating another.

You people are are good at the name calling game but it has many nuances that you don't seem to understand. "Asshole" is so overdone it's almost not an insult anymore. Hell, Denis Leary even wrote a song about it. Try to be more constuctively criticizing with your insults or at a minimum be original. School kids call each other things like "asshole". I hope your level of imagination is higher than second grade, Badtux "the smug, post-skimming,word-twisting, insult-repeating, opinion-projecting, fish murdering" Penguin.

I hope I didn't write to much for you to read all at once this time.
# posted by Dr. Jimmy : 25/9/05 10:51 AM  

Like your blog.
dr jimmy is a fucking asshole..
# posted by bufo bufo : 25/9/05 11:10 AM  

By the way, do any of you actually have any ideas to corect the poverty issues in the United States or should that be the responsibility of others as well? If right now you're wondering if I have any ideas, I do. You probably won't like it but it would work: Licensing for children. A system should be developed for child licensing. I know the christians will never go for this because of the sanctity of life myth they've created and Jefferson's silly notion of inalienable rights hasn't helped either. Just because we crawled out of the cosmic soup doesn't imply any divine destiny to procreate at will. We can think and make rational decisions like not having children until we can afford them and if we can't then oh well. Maybe needing a license would provide the drive that is lacking. We have no more destiny to procreate than the other animals, the difference is that we can understand it...if we try.
# posted by Dr. Jimmy : 25/9/05 11:25 AM  

dr jimmy is a fucking asshole..

see, this is a perfect example of a poor choice of insults. Asshole? Three times in a row? Oh wait, that's right you came up with the penultimate modifier: fucking! Wow. You are good at this. Man, I'm glad the poor have you on their side! I'm not sure they are.
# posted by Dr. Jimmy : 25/9/05 11:28 AM  

"Dr." Jimmy, I once survived 3 months in Houston on $500. That included my car insurance for a rusty old Chevy Chevette. Houston is the cheapest major city in the United States. It's hard to get cheaper than Houston.

As for the problem of hard working people who can't afford health insurance, decent housing, etc., yes, "Dr." Jimmy. I have a plan for solving the problem of WORKING poor in America. It's a three phase plan. #1: Get rid of this bullshit "globalization" bullcrap. Bring manufacturing jobs back to America so that poor people can get jobs that are worthwhile. Whiners will whine, "but what about all those poor Vietnamese and what have you?" So? I pay my tax money to the government of the United States, not to the government of Vietnam. I pay my tax money to have my government take care of me and mine, not to have my government take care of some funny-talkin' furriners overseas who aren't, like, even Americans. I'm with Pat Buchanan on this one: the job of the American government is to, by god, look out for the best interests of AMERICANS, not of VIETNAMESE.

Secondly: National health insurance tied to a payroll tax. Expand Medicare to cover all working Americans as well as prune-Americans. Someone who works hard for a living shouldn't have less health insurance than somebody who doesn't work. Medicare works, we know it works (just try eliminating it and you'll get killed by the prune-Americans), why should prunes get better health insurance than working men and women? It is a national disgrace that a hard working man or woman has less health insurance than a retired prune spending his children's inheritance or a homeless bum who qualifies for Medicaid.

Third: Raise the minimum wage to the point where, if someone is going to work 40 hours a week, they make at least at the poverty line for a family of 4. It is utterly pathetic that a man can work 40, 50, 60 hours a week and still have absolutely no hope of even providing a poverty-level living for his family. And index it to the local cost of living. A minimum wage in Shreveport, LA shouldn't be the same as the minimum wage in San Francisco, CA.

There's more, but 'nuff for now... will go in there on a blog posting.

And now you're going to whine about how it can't work yada yada yada. And how do you know it can't work? Well, because Rush Limbaugh told you so. And Rush obviously is a dispassionate scrupulously honest individual who is not beholden to men of wealth and power who would rather have a large number of desperate poor than a large number of middle-class families. And I'm the Queen of England, worship me, you peasant!

Anyhow, 'nuff of this. I'll do a posting on this shortly.

- Badtux the no-longer-poor Penguin
# posted by BadTux : 25/9/05 6:19 PM  

Well Badtux, I can agree with two of the three but I think raising the minimum wage will just create higher prices and then the higher minimum wage will be as inefficient as it is now. I agree with Pat Buchanan that the borders need to be sealed. That's one of the worst issues facing our economy and the poor in this country. Alot of mexicans come here poor and don't get much higher up. They work their asses off but I wonder for what and wonder how bad Mexico must be that they'd rather risk everything to come here. Anyway, I'm glad to see a plan coming from someone and not just complaints. Are you really a Libertarian or is that just the Snarky Penguin? You seem a bit liberal for Libertarian.

We need to prevent foreign poor people from coming in so we can focus on the ones already here.

I think globalization is the wave of the future too, like it or not. If we make it that far. I can't see a united planet earth anywhere in the near future.
# posted by Dr. Jimmy : 25/9/05 8:39 PM  

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