Friday, October 31, 2008

Will Trade Sex for Obama

From the Beachwood Reporter, which evidently came from Division Street:

October 31, 2008 ·

The best of Craigslist ads seeking tickets to the Obama rally in Grant Park on Tuesday, as determined by Division Street Labs.

1. I can be your date to the Obama rally - $1 (Chicago)
Reply to: sale-898645459@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-29, 6:38PM CDT
I would love to go to the Obama rally!! Have an extra ticket or just need someone to go with you? I would love to go! let me know….maybe it could turn into more than one night with me you and Obama. haha. who knows right??

2. Victoria Secret Gift Card for Obama guest ticket - $75 (Chicago)
Reply to: sale-899916928@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 6:02PM CDT
If anyone wants a victoria secret gift card for their Guest Ticket, PLEASE CONTACT ME!!!!

3. Smart, Beautiful, Funny Girl Needs Obama Ticket - $1 (Chicago)
Reply to: sale-900169948@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 10:20PM CDT
Looking for a fellow Obama supporter who has a ticket to the rally Tuesday. I want to go, hang out, have a drink and have fun.
This pic is current.

4. OBAMA RALLY TICKETS FOR SALE!!!!! $10 Trillion Dollars! - $10 (Uptown)
Reply to: sale-899881700@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 5:32PM CDT
Hi, I can’t go to the rally so I am selling my ticket for 10 trillion dollars. Meet me at the Wilson Red Line. The money will be given to cover the United States public debt bill. Thank you.

5. Blackhawk Ticket for Obama Grat Park Rally Guest Pass - $1 (Chicago, IL)
Reply to: sale-900056525@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 8:16PM CDT
Will exchange 1 Blackhawk Ticket, 12 rows off ice, for 1 guest pass to Obama Rally. If you have two guest passes, I will give you a pair of Blackhawks tickets.

6. Looking For Frumpy, Nerdy Girl to go to Obama - $1 (Chicagoland)
Reply to: sale-899926298@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 6:11PM CDT
I’m looking for a frumpy and/or nerdy girl to go as my +1 to the Obama event. Short girls preferred. Must not be evil. Do you fit these requirements?
I am average, at best.

7. Looking for a SUPER HOT CHICK to take to Obama event with me - $1 (Chicago)
Reply to: sale-899798993@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 4:22PM CDT
Looking for a super hot chick to be my date to the Obama event. I have no problem pulling hot girls in general so since I have Obama tickets you have to be not just hot but like super model hot, or if you look like Eva Longoria. Wanna be my date to Obama?

8. Obama Rally Ticket Trade — Whatever Your Heart Desires from CA - $1 (Los Angeles, CA)
Reply to: sale-899567662@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 1:36PM CDT
I’m flying in Sunday from LA for the election and would absolutely love to be someone’s +1 at the rally. I think it’s shameful and very un-Obama like to sell your ticket to the highest bidder, and it’s even more lame to try to hold a girl hostage for a ticket so you can get a date. So how about this for a trade: if there’s something from LA/CA that you have a craving for or can’t get out in Chicago, I’ll personally transport it all 2000 miles to you. Sprinkles cupcakes? See’s candy? Local beer? A cold and probably soggy Double-Double from In-N-Out? If it’s a reasonable (and hopefully legal) request, name it and its yours.

9. Trade Massage or Apple Computer Help for 2 Obama Tickets (rogers park)
Reply to: sale-897911042@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-29, 9:32AM CDT
My partner and I are willing to trade a professional massage and/or apple computer HELP for 2 tickets to the Obama Rally on the 4th in Grant Park.
She is a licensed Massage Therapist, and I am a Mac specialist [ . . . ] She makes house visits all around the city, and works at a salon [ . . . ] we both have references.

10. WANTED: Take me to Obama rally! - $1 (Chicago)
Reply to: sale-898392257@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-29, 3:33PM CDT
I would LOVE to go to the rally. Take me as your guest!
Let’s barter! What can you get in exchange? Some ideas of things I could do. After all, money’s boring, right?? (oh and I’m an intern, and have been volunteering for Barack so I don’t have much money haha)
-write you a poem
-take you to a rock concert
-a penny I found from 1908
-mention you on the radio/newspaper as one of the coolest people ever
-a feeling like you’ve done a great deed for many years to come
-me (classically trained singer) singing for you or your event for free
-a free piano lesson
-the secret on where to get a pound of deli turkey for only $2.99
-A personal weight training and diet consultation (with a certified scientician*)

Let me know!

*certified by me and I have the fake document I could whip up in PS paint to prove it!

11. If you’re a hot chick & have 1 extra Obama ticket. how bout a dinner? - $1 (Chicago)
Reply to: sale-897977114@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-29, 10:54AM CDT
I am willing to take out a pretty & intellectual chick to dinner in exchange for going and usnig your extra Obama ticket.
How about that? sounds like a win/win/win to me.
-Obama in ‘08
oh, i’m easy on the eyes too, you will like. I just know it!

12. I will custom hand paint your furniture for 2 Obama Tickets - $1 (Riverside, IL)
Reply to: sale-900198758@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 10:59PM CDT
I will paint your furniture for free in exchange for 2 Obama Tickets for my husband and myself! Value up to $500.

13. Will provide math tutoring for Obama guest ticket - $1
Reply to: sale-900220210@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 11:32PM CDT
I am offering my services as a math tutor for two 1-hour sessions in exchange for being your guest at the Obama election night celebration in Grant Park. Sessions can be in-person or on the phone. In-person sessions must be arranged at a mutually agreed-upon location.
I am willing to tutor any level of math from elementary, algebra, geometry, trig, statistics, probability, combinatorics, calculus, real analysis and even financial accounting.

Bonus CraigsList . . .
1. Parking for Obama Rally - $250 (Downtown)
Reply to: sale-899298487@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-30, 10:42AM CDT
Indoor, heated, private parking space available for the Obama Rally on November 4th, 2008. Located at Randolph and Michigan, across the street from Millennium Park. Offer good for entire day.

Reply to: sale-898559679@craigslist.orgDate: 2008-10-29, 5:29PM CDT
Sorry people, nobody can offer meeting the band in exchange for Obama rally tickets. Someone just made it up. NPR should really check their sources.

Finally, a blast from the past. Seems tickets for Obama’s convention speech in Denver were even harder to come by.

1. I will give you a KIDNEY for 2 OBAMA Tickets for tonights speech!
Date: 2008-08-28, 11:35AM MDT
Are you in need of an extra kidney? Know of someone who needs one? I have 2 good kidneys which is a little excessive. Ill give you one of them for two tickets to tonight’s speech. I live in Denver and tried to get tickets the minute they were announced. Somehow the first come first serve registration did not work since I was put on the waitlist.
So, I need two tickets for me and my girlfriend. I have an extra kidney. You take said organ, I take 2 tickets for this historic speech.

Craigslist Scolding re: Obama Ticket Tactics

Biche found this on Craigslist:

Obama tickets = Yes we can ... profit from this - $1 (Your conscience)
Reply to: [?]
Date: 2008-10-31, 10:44AM CDT

I could not possibly be more disgusted with my fellow human beings and Chicagoans than I am right now.


In good faith, you were given the opportunity to come together in (hopefully) celebration of a new era of hope in America, and the first thought to cross your polluted mind was "How can I convert this good will into cash/ass/drugs?"


Yes, yes ... I know. "Capitalism!" you'll say. "Supply and Demand!" you'll stammer. The truth is, these are the same weak arguments and excuses that have lead our nation to the verge of collapse.


True change will require each of us to take responsibility, to stop making the same mistakes, and to selflessly commit ourselves to working towards a better America. Senator Obama is only one man, and he would be the first to tell you that he cannot fix our nation on his own.

Real change will require each of us to choose a departure from the greed and selfishness of the past. These ticket sales, misguided profiteers, are an awful beginning.


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Judging Alvy?

Here is a list of the Illinois Bar Association's recommendations on which judges should/shouldn't be retained. Why not print it out and bring it with you into the voting booth?

Uke Cabaret poster designer and man about town Chris P's band Mean Ohio will become the 60's Garage Rock kings The Sonics at the Halloween show on Friday. The Sonics' tunes make an excellent Halloween Soundtrack- Rough and ready, hard and fast, with fuzzed out guitars and horns. The subject matter is appropriately macabre with songs about drinking strychnine for kicks, witches, psychopaths, and Satan. This track, Strychnine, is from their 1965 debut album Here are The Sonics .


Monday, October 27, 2008

The Goldhead Pyramid-Top Queen Biopic

Steven Soderbergh taps Guided By Voices to score 3D Cleopatra musical...


For his next directing effort, Steven Soderbergh is plotting a 3-D live-action rock ‘n’ roll musical about Cleopatra.

He is courting Catherine Zeta-Jones to play the Egyptian queen and Hugh Jackman to play her lover, Marc Antony.

The $30 million “Cleo” will be shopped for financing and distribution within the next two weeks. Greg Jacobs is producing with Casey Silver.

The music has been written by the indie rock band Guided by Voices, and the script is by James Greer, a former bass player for the band and an author.

First Lady?

Cindy McCain Claims She's Just Like Any Other Female Human

Saturday, October 25, 2008


A new low. It gets AMAZING around 2:40.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Our Very Own Feminist Political Theorist on the Radio!

Listen to ekm take on the Mormon journalism establishment on Utah Public Radio! Dr. M discusses Sarah Palin's debate performance. The last ten seconds are a gem.
Scroll down to Oct. 3rd.

Took The Words Right Outta My Mouth

“I look at these people and can't quite believe that they exist. Are they professional actors? I wonder. Or are they simply laymen who want a lot of attention? To put them in perspective, I think of being on an airplane. The flight attendant comes down the aisle with her food cart and, eventually, parks it beside my seat. "Can I interest you in the chicken?" she asks. "Or would you prefer the platter of shit with bits of broken glass in it? To be undecided in this election is to pause for a moment and then ask how the chicken is cooked."

- Author David Sedaris, on undecided voters

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A little paino, too!

I wonder if Joey Tempest saw this coming?

Greatest Living American

I Hope This Brightens Your Day As Much As It Did Mine

Miss Louisiana loses crown

Lindsey Evans, Miss Louisiana Teen USA, is about a pound lighter, because she just lost her crown.

We just got an advance copy of a statement that will be released from Paula Miles, President of RPM, sponsor of the LA. pageant.

"Lindsey Evans has been part of an organization that believes in opportunities when earned and consequences when warranted. Due to recent circumstances, Lindsey has been relieved of her duties as Miss Louisiana Teen USA 2008 effective immediately."

Evans was arrested this weekend after she and a group of friends allegedly tried to dine-and-dash -- all over a $46.07 bill. Problem -- the pageant queen left her purse at the scene of the crime. She went back to retrieve it, and was busted when cops found pot in the purse.

Here's the insult to injury. She only had 10 days left on her reign. But pageant officials didn't have the patience to wait.

Keep Those Donations Coming!

GOP spent $150,000 in donations on Palin's look

By JIM KUHNHENN Associated Press Writer

Oct 22nd, 2008 | WASHINGTON -- John McCain's presidential campaign said thousands of dollars worth of clothing purchased by the Republican Party for running mate Sarah Palin will go to a "charitable purpose" after the campaign.

The Republican National Committee spent about $150,000 on clothing, hair styling, makeup and other "campaign accessories" in September for the McCain campaign after Palin, the governor of Alaska, joined the ticket.

The expenses include $75,062 spent at Neiman Marcus in Minneapolis Minn., and $41,850 in St. Louis in early September. The committee also reported spending $4,100 for makeup and hair consulting. The expenses were first reported by

"With all of the important issues facing the country right now, it's remarkable that we're spending time talking about pantsuits and blouses," said McCain spokeswoman Tracey Schmitt, who has been traveling with Palin. "It was always the intent that the clothing go to a charitable purpose after the campaign."

In 2007, Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards sparked Internet derision and jokes from late-night TV comics after his campaign for the party's nomination paid for two $400 haircuts by a stylist from Beverly Hills, Calif. His campaign said the bill was paid by the campaign by mistake and that Edwards would reimburse the campaign.

The RNC has been helping the McCain campaign financially now that McCain is locked into spending only $84 million for the fall campaign under his agreement to accept public financing. Barack Obama, the Democratic nominee, chose not to participate in the public system and raised a whopping $150 million in September.

The RNC is allowed to spend up to $19 million in "coordinated expenses" with the campaign. In September, it spent a a total of $4.4 million. The clothing and styling was part of that, but most was spent on postage for campaign mailings.

Federal campaign finance law prohibits the use of campaign funds for personal use, but it defines personal use as any expense "that would exist irrespective of the candidate's campaign or duties as a federal officeholder."

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Monday, October 20, 2008

The End of an Era. A Terrible, Nasty Tasting Era.

MillerCoors Ends Production of Zima

Oct 20th, 2008 | MILWAUKEE

The joint venture between SABMiller's U.S. unit and Molson Coors Brewing Co. told distributors in a letter Monday that production of the malt liquor beverage was discontinued as of Oct. 10.

Chief Marketing Officer Andy England says the decision was due to weakness in the "malternative" segment and declining consumer interest.

He says distributors can get remaining Zima inventories most likely through December.

Distributors are being asked to put products from alcoholic energy brand Sparks on retail store shelves to make up for Zima's absence.

The brand came to the joint venture from Molson Coors, maker of Coors Light and Keystone.

Highlights from Michigan City

Simo and Tony B. took MC Turf 1 by storm on Saturday, knocking on 168 doors in all. Our mission, as imparted to us by the campaign office folks, was primarily to make sure that Obama supporters know that they can vote early and to inform them with the details of where and when. It was a glorious Fall day with big color from the trees,
and to our(slight) surprise, Michigan City's a pretty friendly place. Even the Johnny Mac fans were, if not nice, not much worse than a little crabby.

TB: Sure you get the 40 year old woman who says (brags?): 'Nope, I've never voted ever. Not since [before] I was 18!'

Huh? But on the flipside you get a 70 yr old who (slowly) states that she '... wanted to vote for Obama since before he even decided to run'. You and me both, sister.

Certainly the best canvassing experience I've had, and a pretty easy 4 hours. But I can see why it's a battleground state. These people are all over the map, though to their credit they all seem to get along ok.

P.s. They need people next weekend, too ..."

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Great Band Names

The Scissor Sisters played a secret gig at Mercury Lounge as... Queef Latina.

I Want To Tellll You . . . To Fuck Off?

Monday, October 13, 2008

Friday, October 10, 2008

Another Reason You Should Canvas with Simo

Just a Typo, They Say

10.10.08 -- 3:10PM
By David Kurtz

Some absentee ballots in one upstate New York county list Obama as "Barack Osama."

Michigan City USA

Lake Effectors,
I've signed up to canvas for Obama in Indiana next weekend, either Saturday, October 18 or Sunday, October 19. Quickdraw will be out of town that weekend so I'll be going solo. Would anyone like to join me? It sure would be more fun to canvas with one (or a crew) of you fine folks!


Thanks so much for signing up to help out Barack Obama’s Campaign for Change in Indiana. Indiana is a hotly contested battleground right now. Just last week, MSNBC moved Indiana into the “Toss-up” column. We now have 24 days until E-day, so time’s running out to make a difference.

Please wear comfortable shoes and bring a smile as we’ll be persuading some voters and encouraging them to get out and VOTE!

We have assigned you to the Michigan City Office which is located at:

1916 E US HWY 20

Michigan City, IN 46360

Canvass shifts begin at 10 AM CDT and 2 PM CDT on Saturday and 12 PM CDT and 4 PM CDT on Sunday, so please arrive promptly to get trained and out talking to voters. We’ve got you assigned to this office and will be expecting you there, so unless you hear otherwise from a local organizer, this is the place to go.

The phone number for the office is (219) 809-0008, so feel free to call with any questions you might have.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Department of Eagles

I've only had it for a day and a half, but I sure do like this record so far.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Come and Get'em ...

I realize anyone over the age of 12 who wants one of these already has one ...

but if anyone you know needs a handful of fuzzy responsibility in their lives - Amber G. found five of these in her backyard:

That's right people: Free Kittens. Four look like just like him, and one's all black.

Feel free to spread the word ...

Financial Jamz

In this time of financial turmoil, I find myself singing this song under my breath...

Devin Tha Dude - "Almighty Dollar"

Jews Say The Darndest Things

From today's Page Six:

Atonement is no joking matter. An ad for "August Osage County" that ran just before Yom Kippur, the holiest day in the Jewish calendar, quipped: "If you think you have a lot to atone for, you should meet the Westin family" - the fictional Oklahoma clan featured in the Tracy Letts play. But many readers of Long Island Jewish World, the Jewish Sentinel and the Jewish Tribune weren't amused. We're told 10 groups canceled plans to see the show and demanded refunds for their tickets, calling the ad tasteless and insensitive. "The ad is running during the days of awe between Rosh Hashanah [last week] and Yom Kippur [which begins tonight at sundown]," noted one "August" insider. A spokesman for the show told Page Six, "For the fierce kind of play that 'August' is, the ad is the right kind of primer. If they can't handle a little ad like this, it's probably best if they stay away from the Music Box."


Sunday, October 5, 2008

Friday, October 3, 2008

What I woke up singing.....

Can a song be beautiful, sad and totally effing creepy all at once?

Yes sir.

Happy weekend!

The best Halloween EVER is just around the corner, fellow Effectors. If the weather hasn't done the trick, maybe this'll start getting you in the mood.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Great Moments in Political Savvy

I find it kind of heartwarming that the rules haven't quite been codified in the Plains States for what is and isn't acceptable behaviour by an elected official:

Kansas mayor apologizes for drag-blackface skit

The Associated Press

Thursday, October 02, 2008

ARKANSAS CITY, Kan. — The mayor of a Kansas town appeared in blackface as part of a drag-queen beauty contest but apologized after a meeting with NAACP officials.

Arkansas City Mayor Mel Kuhn won the weekend fundraiser, in which he appeared in dark makeup and used a vulgar reference to female genitalia as his character name(Lake Effect Bonus info: the name used was Smellishis Poon). The fundraiser was for Court Appointed Special Advocates, which supports foster children.

Kuhn's apology, posted on the Web site of the Wichita branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, came after a meeting Wednesday night with officials from the organization.

"I am sincerely sorry and I sincerely apologize for the offensive nature of my actions," Kuhn said in the statement. "I take full responsibility for my actions. The buck absolutely stops here."

Kuhn, mayor of the city of about 11,000 people near the Oklahoma border, did not return a call from The Associated Press seeking comment Thursday. According to census figures from 2000, the city is about 87 percent white and nearly 5 percent black.

Kevin Myles, president of the Wichita NAACP, said in an e-mail Thursday that he and two other members met with Kuhn after learning about the performance.

The mayor told The Arkansas City Traveler newspaper before meeting with the NAACP that he got the idea for the character from the movies "Norbit" and "Big Momma's House," which feature black men portraying black women.

Kuhn told the newspaper that his makeup didn't constitute blackface and that he did not really manage to carry out the character as a black woman; he said it ended up being more like a gypsy.

"I can't do a black accent," he said.

He admitted the character's name was meant to be slang. The mayor also told the paper he informed CASA officials of his plans before the skit.

The Linda Groth, director of Court Appointed Special Advocates, said she noticed Kuhn's face was darker but didn't think he was trying to portray a different race.

"It wasn't black, black. It was all really just tan," she told the Traveler.

Groth said she was unaware of what the character's name meant until a reporter explained it.

"I never heard that word," Groth said. "But I understand exactly what you're saying, and I'm mortified of it."

That's 18 in a row for Obama


Courtesy of the ever-vigilant folks over at RealClearPolitics, we now see that Barack Obama has led in the past 18 consecutive national or battleground state polls, with many of those leads beyond the margin of error. Overall, across the 10 most recent, his average margin is 5.7 points.

Meanwhile, as an update to Alex Koppelman's post Wednesday reporting Quinnipiac's state-level leads for Obama in Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania, late Wednesday night came new results showing movement toward Obama in Minnesota (+11), Missouri (+1), Nevada (+4) and Virginia (+9) -- plus further confirmation about Florida (+4).

Is it any wonder Florida Republicans have officially gone into meltdown mode? Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris will not be able to save them this time around, folks.

-- Thomas Schaller

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Michael Moore on the Economic Bailout Plan


The richest 400 Americans -- that's right, just four hundred people -- own MORE than the bottom 150 million Americans combined. 400 rich Americans have got more stashed away than half the entire country! Their combined net worth is $1.6 trillion. During the eight years of the Bush Administration, their wealth has increased by nearly $700 billion -- the same amount that they are now demanding we give to them for the "bailout." Why don't they just spend the money they made under Bush to bail themselves out? They'd still have nearly a trillion dollars left over to spread amongst themselves!

Of course, they are not going to do that -- at least not voluntarily. George W. Bush was handed a $127 billion surplus when Bill Clinton left office. Because that money was OUR money and not his, he did what the rich prefer to do -- spend it and never look back. Now we have a $9.5 trillion debt. Why on earth would we even think of giving these robber barons any more of our money?

I would like to propose my own bailout plan. My suggestions, listed below, are predicated on the singular and simple belief that the rich must pull themselves up by their own platinum bootstraps. Sorry, fellows, but you drilled it into our heads one too many times: There... is... no... free... lunch. And thank you for encouraging us to hate people on welfare! So, there will be no handouts from us to you. The Senate, tonight, is going to try to rush their version of a "bailout" bill to a vote. They must be stopped. We did it on Monday with the House, and we can do it again today with the Senate.

It is clear, though, that we cannot simply keep protesting without proposing exactly what it is we think Congress should do. So, after consulting with a number of people smarter than Phil Gramm, here is my proposal, now known as "Mike's Rescue Plan." It has 10 simple, straightforward points. They are:

1. APPOINT A SPECIAL PROSECUTOR TO CRIMINALLY INDICT ANYONE ON WALL STREET WHO KNOWINGLY CONTRIBUTED TO THIS COLLAPSE. Before any new money is expended, Congress must commit, by resolution, to criminally prosecute anyone who had anything to do with the attempted sacking of our economy. This means that anyone who committed insider trading, securities fraud or any action that helped bring about this collapse must go to jail. This Congress must call for a Special Prosecutor who will vigorously go after everyone who created the mess, and anyone else who attempts to scam the public in the future.

2. THE RICH MUST PAY FOR THEIR OWN BAILOUT. They may have to live in 5 houses instead of 7. They may have to drive 9 cars instead of 13. The chef for their mini-terriers may have to be reassigned. But there is no way in hell, after forcing family incomes to go down more than $2,000 dollars during the Bush years, that working people and the middle class are going to fork over one dime to underwrite the next yacht purchase.

If they truly need the $700 billion they say they need, well, here is an easy way they can raise it:

a) Every couple who makes over a million dollars a year and every single taxpayer who makes over $500,000 a year will pay a 10% surcharge tax for five years. (It's the Senator Sanders plan. He's like Colonel Sanders, only he's out to fry the right chickens.) That means the rich will still be paying less income tax than when Carter was president. This will raise a total of $300 billion.

b) Like nearly every other democracy, charge a 0.25% tax on every stock transaction. This will raise more than $200 billion in a year.

c) Because every stockholder is a patriotic American, stockholders will forgo receiving a dividend check for one quarter and instead this money will go the treasury to help pay for the bailout.

d) 25% of major U.S. corporations currently pay NO federal income tax. Federal corporate tax revenues currently amount to 1.7% of the GDP compared to 5% in the 1950s. If we raise the corporate income tax back to the level of the 1950s, that gives us an extra $500 billion.
All of this combined should be enough to end the calamity. The rich will get to keep their mansions and their servants, and our United States government ("COUNTRY FIRST!") will have a little leftover to repair some roads, bridges and schools.

3. BAIL OUT THE PEOPLE LOSING THEIR HOMES, NOT THE PEOPLE WHO WILL BUILD AN EIGHTH HOME. There are 1.3 million homes in foreclosure right now. That is what is at the heart of this problem. So instead of giving the money to the banks as a gift, pay down each of these mortgages by $100,000. Force the banks to renegotiate the mortgage so the homeowner can pay on its current value. To insure that this help does no go to speculators and those who have tried to make money by flipping houses, this bailout is only for people's primary residence. And in return for the $100K paydown on the existing mortgage, the government gets to share in the holding of the mortgage so that it can get some of its money back. Thus, the total initial cost of fixing the mortgage crisis at its roots (instead of with the greedy lenders) is $150 billion, not $700 billion.

And let's set the record straight. People who have defaulted on their mortgages are not "bad risks." They are our fellow Americans, and all they wanted was what we all want and most of us still get: a home to call their own. But during the Bush years, millions of them lost the decent paying jobs they had. Six million fell into poverty. Seven million lost their health insurance. And every one of them saw their real wages go down by $2,000. Those who dare to look down on these Americans who got hit with one bad break after another should be ashamed. We are a better, stronger, safer and happier society when all of our citizens can afford to live in a home that they own.

4. IF YOUR BANK OR COMPANY GETS ANY OF OUR MONEY IN A "BAILOUT," THEN WE OWN YOU. Sorry, that's how it's done. If the bank gives me money so I can buy a house, the bank "owns" that house until I pay it all back -- with interest. Same deal for Wall Street. Whatever money you need to stay afloat, if our government considers you a safe risk -- and necessary for the good of the country -- then you can get a loan, but we will own you. If you default, we will sell you. This is how the Swedish government did it and it worked.

5. ALL REGULATIONS MUST BE RESTORED. THE REAGAN REVOLUTION IS DEAD. This catastrophe happened because we let the fox have the keys to the henhouse. In 1999, Phil Gramm authored a bill to remove all the regulations that governed Wall Street and our banking system. The bill passed and Clinton signed it. Here's what Sen. Phil Gramm, McCain's chief economic advisor, said at the bill signing:

"In the 1930s ... it was believed that government was the answer. It was believed that stability and growth came from government overriding the functioning of free markets.

"We are here today to repeal [that] because we have learned that government is not the answer. We have learned that freedom and competition are the answers. We have learned that we promote economic growth and we promote stability by having competition and freedom.

"I am proud to be here because this is an important bill; it is a deregulatory bill. I believe that that is the wave of the future, and I am awfully proud to have been a part of making it a reality."
This bill must be repealed. Bill Clinton can help by leading the effort for the repeal of the Gramm bill and the reinstating of even tougher regulations regarding our financial institutions. And when they're done with that, they can restore the regulations for the airlines, the inspection of our food, the oil industry, OSHA, and every other entity that affects our daily lives. All oversight provisions for any "bailout" must have enforcement monies attached to them and criminal penalties for all offenders.

6. IF IT'S TOO BIG TO FAIL, THEN THAT MEANS IT'S TOO BIG TO EXIST. Allowing the creation of these mega-mergers and not enforcing the monopoly and anti-trust laws has allowed a number of financial institutions and corporations to become so large, the very thought of their collapse means an even bigger collapse across the entire economy. No one or two companies should have this kind of power. The so-called "economic Pearl Harbor" can't happen when you have hundreds -- thousands -- of institutions where people have their money. When you have a dozen auto companies, if one goes belly-up, we don't face a national disaster. If you have three separately-owned daily newspapers in your town, then one media company can't call all the shots (I know... What am I thinking?! Who reads a paper anymore? Sure glad all those mergers and buyouts left us with a strong and free press!). Laws must be enacted to prevent companies from being so large and dominant that with one slingshot to the eye, the giant falls and dies. And no institution should be allowed to set up money schemes that no one can understand. If you can't explain it in two sentences, you shouldn't be taking anyone's money.

7. NO EXECUTIVE SHOULD BE PAID MORE THAN 40 TIMES THEIR AVERAGE EMPLOYEE, AND NO EXECUTIVE SHOULD RECEIVE ANY KIND OF "PARACHUTE" OTHER THAN THE VERY GENEROUS SALARY HE OR SHE MADE WHILE WORKING FOR THE COMPANY. In 1980, the average American CEO made 45 times what their employees made. By 2003, they were making 254 times what their workers made. After 8 years of Bush, they now make over 400 times what their average employee makes. How this can happen at publicly held companies is beyond reason. In Britain, the average CEO makes 28 times what their average employee makes. In Japan, it's only 17 times! The last I heard, the CEO of Toyota was living the high life in Tokyo. How does he do it on so little money? Seriously, this is an outrage. We have created the mess we're in by letting the people at the top become bloated beyond belief with millions of dollars. This has to stop. Not only should no executive who receives help out of this mess profit from it, but any executive who was in charge of running his company into the ground should be fired before the company receives any help.

8. STRENGTHEN THE FDIC AND MAKE IT A MODEL FOR PROTECTING NOT ONLY PEOPLE'S SAVINGS, BUT ALSO THEIR PENSIONS AND THEIR HOMES. Obama was correct yesterday to propose expanding FDIC protection of people's savings in their banks to $250,000. But this same sort of government insurance must be given to our nation's pension funds. People should never have to worry about whether or not the money they've put away for their old age will be there. This will mean strict government oversight of companies who manage their employees' funds -- or perhaps it means that the companies will have to turn over those funds and their management to the government. People's private retirement funds must also be protected, but perhaps it's time to consider not having one's retirement invested in the casino known as the stock market. Our government should have a solemn duty to guarantee that no one who grows old in this country has to worry about ending up destitute.

9. EVERYBODY NEEDS TO TAKE A DEEP BREATH, CALM DOWN, AND NOT LET FEAR RULE THE DAY. Turn off the TV! We are not in the Second Great Depression. The sky is not falling. Pundits and politicians are lying to us so fast and furious it's hard not to be affected by all the fear mongering. Even I, yesterday, wrote to you and repeated what I heard on the news, that the Dow had the biggest one day drop in its history. Well, that's true in terms of points, but its 7% drop came nowhere close to Black Monday in 1987 when the stock market in one day lost 23% of its value. In the '80s, 3,000 banks closed, but America didn't go out of business. These institutions have always had their ups and downs and eventually it works out. It has to, because the rich do not like their wealth being disrupted! They have a vested interest in calming things down and getting back into the Jacuzzi.

As crazy as things are right now, tens of thousands of people got a car loan this week. Thousands went to the bank and got a mortgage to buy a home. Students just back to college found banks more than happy to put them into hock for the next 15 years with a student loan. Life has gone on. Not a single person has lost any of their money if it's in a bank or a treasury note or a CD. And the most amazing thing is that the American public hasn't bought the scare campaign. The citizens didn't blink, and instead told Congress to take that bailout and shove it. THAT was impressive. Why didn't the population succumb to the fright-filled warnings from their president and his cronies? Well, you can only say 'Saddam has da bomb' so many times before the people realize you're a lying sack of shite. After eight long years, the nation is worn out and simply can't take it any longer.

10. CREATE A NATIONAL BANK, A "PEOPLE'S BANK." If we really are itching to print up a trillion dollars, instead of giving it to a few rich people, why don't we give it to ourselves? Now that we own Freddie and Fannie, why not set up a people's bank? One that can provide low-interest loans for all sorts of people who want to own a home, start a small business, go to school, come up with the cure for cancer or create the next great invention. And now that we own AIG, the country's largest insurance company, let's take the next step and provide health insurance for everyone. Medicare for all. It will save us so much money in the long run. And we won't be 12th on the life expectancy list. We'll be able to have a longer life, enjoying our government-protected pension, and living to see the day when the corporate criminals who caused so much misery are let out of prison so that we can help reacclimate them to civilian life -- a life with one nice home and a gas-free car that was invented with help from the People's Bank.

Michael Moore

P.S. Call your Senators now. Here's a backup link in case we crash that site again. They are going to attempt their own version of the Looting of America tonight. And let your reps know if you agree with my 10-point plan.