Obama to oppose tax cuts for rich, psychic suicide of Democratic Party

President Obama with various Democratic lawmakers, all poised to run out of the room and say they never met him if a scary poll comes out.

According to the Times, President Obama will officially come out against extending the Bush tax cuts for households making over $250,000 a year, offering instead to extend cuts for the 98% of Americans who earn less than that. He’s also presented a package of deductions and capital incentives for small businesses, plus infrastructure spending designed to boost the economy and encourage hiring. It’s not a stimulus, though, because people don’t like that word. That a government plan to stimulate the economy must never again be called a stimulus is one of the few things that Democratic lawmakers can agree on lately. The other is that not giving a tax cut to the the richest 2% of the country is politically risky, and maybe they should just do it anyway so Republicans will stop being mean to them.

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Friday links! Ascending order of weirdness edition

Google image search: "weird sausage." Nice to see Marilyn Manson is almost done with his studio art MFA.

American culture is such a particolored cavalcade of weird shit right now that it’s sometimes hard to believe in the standards of realism. Consider, for a moment, that the most vibrant movement currently afoot in our national politics believes that the first black president is a second Hitler, and that Hitler himself was a socialist. Or ponder the knowledge that, having failed to block health care reform with misinformation and threats of filibuster, Republican congressmen have begun to attack financial reform with misinformation and threats of filibuster. It’s as if a promising but unpracticed undergraduate creative writing student were currently writing the narrative of American politics, with all the characters acting too closely to type and an increasing number of surreal flourishes to distract us as the plot fails to cohere. In other words, it all seems kind of made up. In preparation for a weekend that will doubtless conform to natural realism more faithfully than we’d like, this Friday’s link roundup is devoted to stories that our too good to be true, arranged in order of decreasing plausibility. That their truth seems to diminish in as their goodness mounts is surely commentary on something, but it’s probably better if we don’t think about what. Let’s just sit back and enjoy the descent into an entirely fictionalized culture, built for our amusement with the lineaments of the real.

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