Saturday, July 30, 2011


i do not know about you, but this muse is disgusted over the inability of Congress to reach a resolution of the debt ceiling crisis as is even more disgusted over the inability of the Senate to even rationally discuss a Constitutional Amendment to control spending and balance the budget. Senator Boxer's position is consistent with her idealoge nature but Senator Feinstein where is the rational thought that makes reds like me vote for you. Are there no Blues in the Senate with courage to address this problem. Mr. President can you rise above your need to be reelected
As this nation approaches its fiscal debt ceiling brink
Nation is in total suspense as to which side will blink
A constitutional amendment to balance budgets is a forlorn hope
Not with Reid’s Senate attaching its hangman’s rope
Even if a few Blue Dogs put country ahead of Reid
Too long before we would get the fiscal restraint saplings from the seeds
Reid/Boehner are both in terms of solving the deficit a joke
Phantom cuts in spending; we will still be under a crushing debt ceiling yoke
Obama speaks of compromise but look beyond his words
He will do anything to have his reelection assured.
He faces the strikes of unemployment, Obamacare and gas through the roof
A perception that Washington does not care and he is way too aloof
He cannot add another strike of deficit ceiling and expect to win
But now time to put election aside and terminate the spin
If he refuses then the Reds extend more and take the high road
Making sure when the fall arrives the public knows it has been snowed.
© July 29, 2011 Michael P. Ridley aka The Alaskanpoet

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Kindergarten Follies

we have had to endure another weekend of dashed hopes and dreams as our leaders in the Congress and White House have apparently failed to come to an agreement over the debt ceiling and deficit reduction. I suspect that most if not all of us have had it. It is bad enough Space Americana has been ceded to the Chinese as the Shuttle Program with the last flight of Atlantis has faded into the sunset. we now face the end of Dollar Americana as we approach the potential of default on our obligations. Pax Americana is not far behind as Obama is doing everything in his power to extract U.S. military from Iraq and Afghanistan. Pray for maturity on both sides and pray for it now.

Kindergarten Follies
The weekend has evidently come to an end without a deficit deal
The rancor and bickering leaving scars that may never heal
Never have I seen such partisan stress
Children in kindergarten throwing names with little success
One can argue about loopholes and corporate jets
Class cards that allow us to the major issues forget
We have gone on a spending binge
The fragile recovery soon to unhinge
Maybe it is the voters' fault
But we can not elect guardians of our nation's vault
Or worse regardless of their goals, the office quickly corrupts
Never ending fires to find election money in state of constant erupt
What was a sense of service has evolved to a well paid career
Human nature, our Blues and Reds will do anything to keep their benefits held dear
If our leaders we fundementally cannot trust
To live within our means as the budget they bust
Then we must our Constitution amend as we will not destroy the printing press
Spending caps and revenue caps to the urge to spend and tax suppress
Let the states decide but a Reid stands like the French at Verdun
It will not pass, we must keep any sense of fiscal sanity on the run
So little time, the egg shells spread in pieces too many to count
Our financial problems are not getting better and continue to mount
Put them back in the room, let the cameras roll
Stop their salaries, non stop meetings no matter the toll
Come to an agreement that no one totally likes
But in at least in a small way slowing the red ink to breach the dike
And send the amendment to the states
This muse fears the future for his kids that now awaits
(c) Michael P. Ridley aka The Alaskanpoet

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Chrysler Reborn

News today is that the U.S. Government has sold its stake in Chrysler to Fiat who will now become the majority shareholder of Chyrsler with the UAW holding over 45% of the shares. Treasury seemed proud of itslef that although the stockholders, bondholders, and creditors of Chrysler were pretty much wiped out, it lost only a billion dollars on its investment as a bailout of the Chrysler. Will be interesting to see if Fiat is able to keep the company afloat and prosper. It will be even more interesting to see in a much larger bailout, how much more we lose in General Motors.
Hope you enjoy the poetic commentary.

Chrylser Reborn
Before we stand up and cheer and pop the corks on iced champagne
A moment to reflect when market forces are no longer free to reign
Chrysler was sinking until the government began to bail
The mantra of we could not let our auto industry be driven off the road to fail
Bond and stockholders and creditors however were fair game
To the union demands the administration never tamed
Security thrown out the window and the UAW got a lion's share
No question of whether it was proper, right or the remotest fair.
Fiat now owns a majority with the UAW in second place
In Obamaspeak, losing only a billion is a victory we should embrace.
You have to admire Fiat or really pity
To now control Chrysler in the Motor City
With union costs still too high and margins in a squeeze
While all around, the economy begins to wheeze
If Mussolini could to his credit get the Italian trains to run with the clocks
Maybe the union stranglehold Fiat will be able to finally unlock.
If not in the dark of a moonless night
Move the company next to Boeing with little union rights
The only job security, the only real unemployment cure
Are profits on the increase and felt to be secure
© July 21, 2011 Michael P. Ridley ala The Alaskanpoet

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Amend the Constitution

The ongoing debate or lack of meaningful discussion thereof on the debt ceiling and the deficit has gone on for months in an atmosphere almost surreal as we move closer and closer to default and a debt the cost of servicing of which will consume most if not all of our discretionary budget. Obama seems interested in playing the old Chicago hardball game, threatening to withhold Social Security checks and railing against the corporate jets and oil companies. The Blues and Reds in House and Senate are not without blame either. This muse is convinced that we will never curb spending as long as we have the ability to borrow and live beyond our means, regardless of who is in power. Unlike the states even California to one's great surprise, cities, counties, boroughs, and families who must balance their budgets and make hard priority decisions, Washington appears to be incapable of doing that. My suggestion follows; hope the Blues in the Senate have the courage to join the House in passing a Constitutional Amendment in a veto proof fashion.

Amend the Constitution
There is a solution to the deficit that has just about the same or less chance
Of a Don Quixote spearing a windmill with his tattered and rusty lance
The message loud and clear we have again and again heard
Somehow, someway it is the growth of spending we must curb
Expecting Reds and Blues to curb spending is like pouring from a bottle an alcoholic a drink
Then after he has finished, expect him to pour the rest of the bottle down the sink
It will not happen as long as the recipients of spending marshal their forces or PACS
Not a chance in hell spending in any meaningful manner will be cut back
We need a constitutional amendment that we cannot spend more than in taxes we make
Coupled with a limit in terms of GDP on what the tax man may from us take
It may be a hope forlorn with the Senate in the control of the Blues and Obama with a veto pen
But if we do not follow this path and soon, the debt ceiling will have to be raised again and again!
Until interest eats up all our revenue in the taxing vault
And this country pulls a Greece and goes into default
© July 17, 2011 Michael P. Ridley aka The Alaskanpoet

Friday, July 15, 2011

My Kingdom for a Budget

I am certain that most of us have lost all patience over the inability of Congress and the White House to come to a meeting of the minds to resolve the financial chaos that faces us. This Alaskan is a Red and is absolutely shocked almost to the point of being at loss to rhyme ( that takes a lot) over the President's performance. Other that shifting of blame he thus far appears so out of his league it is frightening. The government is like a Moose and the Cookie--feed him a tax increase and he will want more but my God with the President playing the greedy oil company card even though the dollars to the oil companies are miniscule, the Blues should have given in on that issue in exchange for the Obama administration granting licenses to drill. The more I watch this spectacle and the corruption of politicians over time to maintain and preserve their career, the more I am convinced, today's problems notwithstanding, that the Greeks with the idea of election by lot had the better idea. Hope you enjoy:

Shame on Blues, Obama and Reds

After weeks of drama the final act seems about to be played
After weeks of shouts, pouts and tempers frayed
Who knows what the outcome will be of discussions behind closed doors
Only we are getting closer to a nation’s insolvency shore
One of the most important issues to face this country in many years we must solve
Relegated to the appearances before the talking heads and the press to resolve
It looks like we may get only a debt ceiling raise
Reds, Obama, and Blues should be condemned not praised
Obama for being completely over his head
Too quick to play the class taxing card instead
And to discover the press conference to Reds berate
As the deficit monster grows larger and does not abate
The Blues for hiding their heads in the deficit sands
Unable to admit spending is completely out of hand
To have supported the trillion phantom shovels creating a few meager jobs
With a debt all generations' futures they have just robbed
And failing to come to grips of the burden of ObamaCare on those who hire
And why it's now impossible to add jobs but rather to status quo or worse to fire
To the Reds who had right and reason on their side
To let Obama deftly shift the tide
Corporate jets and oil company gifts
While the economy and jobs in downward drift
This should come as no shock
Ceiling raise notwithstanding, Moodys our credit rating should drop
The only way sanity of a fiscal sort can ever be obtained
So simple like to stay dry you come out of the rain
A balanced budget Constitutional amendment we must ratify
Any talk of spending cuts is merely talk and mostly blue sky

(c) July 15, 2011 Michael P. Ridley aka The Alaskanpoet

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Hunger Strikes ala Belfast and Bobby Sands

The recent news in the L.A. Times is that inmates at California's maximum security prison Pelican Bay are on a hunger strike because of inhuman conditions there (locked in their cells for all but one and one half hour a day) and requests for something so basic as one phone call not a day but a month. What is even more amazing is that inmates in at least one third of California's overcrowded non rehabilating prisons failing in almost every sense of the word in terms of recidivism save one creating huge salaries and pensions for the correction officers and huge contributions to Democratic campaigns, to the major detriment in this budget challenged austerity to our schools. After reading most of the comments which seemed pleased the inmates might starve themselves to death and thereby save the state money, I wrote this
Hunger Strikes
A bleeding heart liberal the Alaskanpoet is not
But to jail a man in isolation until he rots?
Isolated from all human contact seems somewhat inhumane
How long does it take to wither away most of one's brain?
Pelican Bay inmates may be a threat to themselves and to the guards
But only an hour a day to walk in the prison yard?
The news of a hunger strike should cause us to pause
Is it the gasping of last resort, the grasping of straws
Or like the seed of a flower crawling upward through the concrete
A sign that a human spirit even in the most evil felon is hard to defeat?
We cannot treat humans as animals good only to cage
And expect that some of our own humanity is not erased from the page
If they are serious at Pelican Bay and with resolve
Our disgust of mollycoddling should soon dissolve
Like the English Lion in Northern Ireland brought to bay
Not by bombs but by death by hunger strike by Bobby Sands and nine other jailed members of the I.R.A.
This is not about in prison the lack of ice cream or strawberry cake
No a much larger piece of our own humanity is at stake.
Prison even Pelican Bay should be less of punishment and more a symbol to deter
And since no felon ever expects to be caught, some rehab efforts to habits cure
Unless each inmate will never again see the light of day outside a prison cell
He will be released with revenge and new skills learned for future more violent crimes to excel
Michael P. Ridley aka The Alaskanpoet (c)July 5, 2011