Posts Tagged ‘movetoamend’

SAME OLD STORY, SAME OLD SONG

April 25, 2011

True Progressives – CLICK IMAGE for the other side of the story.

True Story:

I shared this story before, but people couldn’t hear it. It seems preposterous. Things as they are, let’s try again.

In 1991, a senior assistant from President Bush Sr.’s office met National Association of Counties (NACo) President Michael Stewart (R – Salt Lake Co.) at a cocktail party at the Annual Conference in Salt Lake City. I overheard them discussing the “best” form of government, ever. They agreed that it was Medieval England around the time of King John. Its benefits?

  • The king is the sole authority, secures obedience, neutralizes all possible challengers; gains the monopoly of force; and, maintains law and order.
  • Patriotism is focused on the nation, not on the localities that comprise it, transferring identity from local to national level, at the disposal of the king.
  • The state dominates or controls the religious life of society with a single authoritarian religion to manage the mob for advantage.
  • The state controls economic life to facilitate circulation and exchange of goods, and grasps as much as possible of the national wealth for the king and his allies.

In the medieval model stability is created through divine hierarchy. The king rules all, the church facilitates obedience of the mass, the military protects the property of king and “state”, and the peasants work to feed everybody. It’s a simple model, which allowed it to last for several hundred incredibly stultifying and repressive years in which most of humanity subsisted on the level of cattle, or swine, and wars were fought at personal whim of a vainglorious, and occasionally religiously demented elite. Does this ring bells?

The important men at the 1991 cocktail party didn’t intend to install a king or a single church in America (at least right now), but in variation, updated and recycled form, favored state identification and alliance with a majority religion and a CEO working with a board of directors (perhaps preserving a hint of representative government – old habits, even bad ones such as participative management, die hard). Call king and court president and cabinet, or rose and garden, they envisioned a tyrant working with an oligarchy of the privileged elite that they believe is, of course, best suited to govern, operating above government and for the privileged elite. They think they’re nobility.

They were deadly serious and not amused when I asked if they had heard of Robin Hood or the Magna Carta. They looked at me as if I’d shit their shoes, then ignored me.

“Americans deserve the government they elect,” my father used to say, but we didn’t elect G.W. Bush, or the Koch brothers. Kings, as I recall, are divinely chosen – in our case, by fat cats and a corrupted Supreme Court. Kings and aristocracy represent the elite status quo, which presently resides in Wall Street. Wall Street wants to govern everything by itself, without any interference from the rest of us. Father knows best. Or, would that be “brothers?”

Koch Brothers Buy Their Way Into, Then Breezily Skew, Civic Discourse

Anti-American Terrorists

Anti-American Terrorists

Following a strategy of ignoring the facts and killing the messenger, the billionaire Koch Brothers have responded to the Center for Public Integrity’s report on Koch lobbying activities by mounting a smear campaign against the Center – complete with the real “Koch facts” – while refusing requests to speak with them. In the last elections, though, the Kochs did tell 50,000 employees who to vote for and what disasters would befall them if they didn’t. Citizens United rendered such corporate politicking marginally legal, though still, of course, supremely sleazy. -Abby Zimet More… 4-20-11 TruthDig.com

KINGS KOCH [The ultra rightwing Koch Brothers are – PUBLIC ENEMIES 1 and 2]

Poor Beleaguered Billionaires

The rich have created and retain dominance in an amoral, or consciously immoral world of corruption, thievery, and violence, instead of trying to eliminate or improve conditions that would remedy or heal it. They would leave us with a permanently dysfunctional, and therefore, easier to manage wingnut government. The dog-eat-dog social consequences are devastating to consider. The cynicism is appalling.

The rich don’t expect any retribution or punishment, for it is the culture. They are so highly placed that they expect to tiptoe through the tulips while the rest of us fry in the ozone hole. See also:   .

Corporate Coup d’état Coming Soon to a City Near You. Rania Khalek Wednesday, April 20, 2011 by CommonDreams.org

In The Shock Doctrine, Naomi Klein demonstrates how wealthy elites often use crisis and chaos to impose unpopular policies that restructure economies and political systems to advance their interests. She calls these orchestrated raids, “disaster capitalism.” Disaster capitalism is on display around the country, as legislators use the debt crisis afflicting their states as an opportunity to hollow out the public sector.

This so-called financial emergency is really a democracy emergency. Local governments are NOT corporations. The true purpose of emergency financial management is to convert a democratically elected government into a hierarchal business entity through economic “shock therapy”, which would be impossible if workers, elected representatives, and residents had any say. If we allow what is taking place to continue, disaster capitalism will find its way to a city, town, or school district near you. READ MORE: Rania Khalek blog at http://raniakhalek.com.

All U.S. Prime

GOP Wave Reshapes Nation’s Agenda State by State. Ann Sanner and Calvin Woodward Monday, April 18, 2011 by Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio – State by state, Republicans are moving fast on a conservative agenda they had no hope of achieving before the big election gains of November. The dividends go beyond spending cuts. Republicans are restricting abortion, expanding gun rights, imposing polling-station photo ID laws and attacking public sector unions.

Democrats find themselves cowed or outmaneuvered, hoping that voters will see these actions as an overreach by the Republicans, an accidental revolution to be reversed.

It’s not all coming up tulips for rightwing extremists. New Mexico and Utah are among Republican-led states where governors are bypassing the GOP playbook; and the tea party movement is in tatters in Colorado and not much better off in Alaska. READ MORE: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2011/04/18-2

Final words: Keep on keepin’ on. We, the people, need each other. We can win this fight against the self-styled elite. We outnumber them. Vote Progressive as if your life depends upon it – it probably does, and cliché or not, every election is the most important election since our Constitution was ratified. Best regards and good luck to us all, j

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OIL, GAS, COAL, and KOCH

April 2, 2011

[Click images for MORE info]

OIL, GAS, COAL, and KOCH:

The only way we are going to have any chance of getting out of our own extinction is to finally bite the bullet and STOP these big oil boys.

It’s time to end taxpayer handouts to Big Oil; it’s time to end dangerous new drilling handouts to Big Oil, and it’s time to invest in real solutions that end our oil addiction, including a 60 mpg standard for new vehicles and transportation choices such as public transportation and safe biking and walking; and massive investment in clean energy.

We are going to be at the bottom of our own LaBrea Tar Pit as the mastodons and saber-tooth fossils of our time if we do not act swiftly.

Hanging Out on Main Street

Dennis Kucinich: Creating Economic Democracy March 25, 2011 by Grit TV

“We have to change the balance here and the way you change the balance is a conceptual shift in what you see as the purpose of a nation. The purpose of a nation isn’t to make the rich richer or to make the poor poorer, it’s to make sure that you have a vibrant economy where there’s room for everyone,” says Ohio Representative Dennis Kucinich. Laura sat down with Rep. Kucinich in Madison March 12 after his speech at a rally hosted by The Progressive magazine and discussed the attacks on public sector workers and what a real economic democracy would look like–full employment, universal health care and education, and a commitment to peace.

Public Enemies - Charles and David

GET THE KOCHS OFF OUR BACKS!

David and Charles are responsible for a vicious attack campaign aimed directly at obstructing and killing progressive reform. Their opposition is a long family tradition of trying to shift the country to the far right. Their father, Fred Koch, helped to found the John Birch Society in the late 1950s. Among the American Nazis, KKK hoods and militia toughs the John Birch Society ran Patrick Henry bookstores filled with scurrilous lying polemics attacking and undermining and diminishing government and advocating a treasonous program of subversion and sabotage. Fred’s sons continue to galvanize hundreds of thousands of middle class people into supporting the Kochs’ narrow agenda of cutting corporate taxes and avoiding consumer regulations to the ruin of our equality and democracy.

Their opposition is a long family tradition of trying to shift the country to the far right and intentionally intended to destroy our democratic republic.

P.s. David Koch presents himself as a champion of science. Nevertheless, Koch has done more to undermine the public’s understanding of climate change science than any other person in America. The Kochs financed the rowdies who disrupted the Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

Surely, the Kochs must be criminally liable for something in the midst of all their selfish corruption. Up the Rebels!

Citizens United - bought and paid for corporate shills.

Persecuted Kochs

DIGEST: Billionaire Self-Pity and the Koch Brothers. Glenn Greenwald 3-28-11 Salon.com

Since the financial crisis of 2008, one of the most revealing spectacles has been the parade of financial elites who petulantly insist that they are the victims of societal hostility: political officials heap too much blame on them, public policy burdens them so unfairly, the public resents them, and — most amazingly of all — President Obama is a radical egalitarian who is unprecedentedly hostile to business interests. One particularly illustrative example was the whiny little multi-millionaire hedge fund manager (and CNBC contributor), Anthony Scaramucci, who stood up at an October, 2010, town hall meeting and demanded to know: “when are we going to stop whacking at the Wall Street piñata?”

The Weekly Standard now has a very lengthy defense of — including rare interviews with — Charles and David Koch, the libertarian billionaires who fund everything from right-wing economic policy, union-busting, and anti-climate-change advocacy to civil liberties and liberalized social policies — though far more the former goals than the latter. In this article one finds the purest and most instructive expression of billionaire self-pity that I think I’ve ever seen — one that is as self-absorbed and detached from reality as it destructive. It’s really worth examining their revealed mindset to see how those who wield the greatest financial power (and thus the greatest political power) think of themselves and those who are outside of their class.

There’s no question in my mind that the unrestrained power over the political process and both political parties enjoyed by oligarchs is the single greatest political problem the country faces — the overarching problem — but in the scheme of corporate and oligarchical dominance, the Koch Brothers are a small part of that dynamic.  Nor do I believe that they’re motivated in their political activism by personal profit: for people with a net worth of $20 billion, there are vastly more efficient ways to convert one’s wealth into greater wealth than spending money to influence public policy; I think they’re True Believers.

Ask Charles Koch what he thinks about Obama and he looks like he’s just bit into a lemon. “He’s a dedicated egalitarian,” Charles said. “I’m not saying he’s a Marxist, but he’s internalized some Marxist models — that is, that business tends to be successful by exploiting its customers and workers.”

David agreed. “He’s the most radical president we’ve ever had as a nation,” he said, “and has done more damage to the free enterprise system and long-term prosperity than any president we’ve ever had.” David suggested the president’s radicalism was tied to his upbringing. “His father was a hard core economic socialist in Kenya,” he said. “Obama didn’t really interact with his father face-to-face very much, but was apparently from what I read a great admirer of his father’s points of view. So he had sort of antibusiness, anti-free enterprise influences affecting him almost all his life. It just shows you what a person with a silver tongue can achieve.”

So Barack Obama is a “dedicated egalitarian” who has “internalized Marxist” ideas in the Kenyan socialist tradition. Just compare that to actual facts. From The Huffington Post today:

Since Obama was inaugurated, the Dow Jones has increased more than 50% — from 8,000 to more than 12,000; the wealthiest recieved a massive tax cut; the top marginal tax rate was three times less than during the Eisenhower years and substantially lower than during the Reagan years; income and wealth inequality are so vast and rising that it is easily at Third World levels; meanwhile, “the share of U.S. taxes paid by corporations has fallen from 30 percent of federal revenue in the 1950s to 6.6 percent in 2009.” During this same time period, the unemployment rate has increased from 7.7% to 8.9%; millions of Americans have had their homes foreclosed; and the number of Americans living below the poverty line increased by many millions, the largest number since the statistic has been recorded. Can you smell Obama’s radical egalitarianism and Marxist anti-business hatred yet?

Read the full article at Salon.com

more Glenn Greenwald

  • Last Supper Spread

O, GOD, I’M GETTING FAT!

Church-going Christians are twice as likely to become obese as godless barbarians, says a new study by Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. Even the apostles are eating more and more over the past thousand years. Though the body‘s supposed to be a temple and all, one academic suggests churches are “a feeding ground for gluttony and obesity.” Kinda harsh, but it may be time to cut back on those baked ham and mashed potato suppers.

“We the Corporations”

March 1, 2010
The contrast between Abraham Lincoln and the modern Republican Party is glaring.   Lincoln fought for democracy and union.  Modern Republicans fight for money and self-interest.  Lincoln was (by report) an unassuming and humble man; name one modern Republican who is not awash in arrogance and hubris.  Lincoln built the Transcontinental Railroad; the present crop created the second Great Republican Recession.

He worked for one nation indivisible.

 The merger of corporations with the state is Mussolini’s original definition of fascism.  Look it up.

IMPEACH THE SUPREME COURT FIVE!

“We the corporations”

On January 21, 2010, with its ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the Supreme Court ruled that corporations are persons, entitled by the U.S. Constitution to buy elections and run our government. Human beings are people; corporations are legal fictions. The Supreme Court is misguided in principle, and wrong on the law. In a democracy, the people rule.

We Move to Amend.

We, the People of the United States of America, reject the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United, and move to amend our Constitution to:

  • Firmly establish that money is not speech, and that human beings, not corporations, are persons entitled to constitutional rights.
  • Guarantee the right to vote and to participate, and to have our votes and participation count.
  • Protect local communities, their economies, and democracies against illegitimate “preemption” actions by global, national, and state governments.

Signed by 66,763 and counting . . .  CONTACT: http://www.movetoamend.org/

Bust Up the Health Insurance Trusts February 25, 2010 by Robert Reich’s Blog by Robert Reich

Years ago I worked at an agency in Washington called the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC predates the New Deal. It was set up in 1914 during the administration of Woodrow Wilson, at a time when many of America’s industries had combined into giant trusts that had enormous market and political power. The FTC was designed to root out such unfair practices. It ought to take on the health insurance trusts. A few weeks back I mentioned that my health insurer here in California is Anthem Blue Cross. So far, my group policy hasn’t been affected by Anthem’s planned rate increase of as much as 39 percent for its customers with individual policies — but the trend worries me, as it should everyone. Rates are soaring all over the country. Insurers have been seeking to raise premiums 24 percent in Connecticut, 23 percent in Maine, 20 percent in Oregon and a wallet-popping 56 percent in Michigan. How can insurers raise prices as much as they want without fear of losing customers?

Astonishingly, the health insurance industry is exempt from federal antitrust laws, which is why a handful of insurers have become so dominant in their markets that their customers simply have nowhere else to go. But that protection might soon end: President Obama on Tuesday announced his support of a House bill that would repeal health insurers’ antitrust exemption, and Speaker Nancy Pelosi signaled that she would put it toward an immediate vote. READ MORE: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2010/02/25-3 

US Banks Veto ‘Socialist Pay’ in Secret Talks February 28, 2010 by the Independent/UK by Margareta Pagano

America’s top bankers quashed attempts by their British counterparts to persuade the industry to bring down salaries in response to public outrage after the world’s governments spent billions rescuing the system.

Chief executives from the world’s banks discussed the plans at a secret dinner held at Claridge’s, the London hotel, last October, at which several leading British bankers are said to have suggested that the sector should take greater responsibility for its part in the crash, and do more to reduce the vast bonuses paid to staff.

But the recommendations were met by stiff opposition from the US banks JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, according to one source. “Some of the US bankers were furious about attempts to reduce pay throughout the industry, arguing that any such move smacked of socialism and would be fiercely resisted,” the source said on Friday. “It’s not the way the Americans like to go about their business.”  READ MORE: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/02/28

GOP to the Unemployed: Drop Dead (You Bums) March 1, 2010 by Unsilent Generation by James Ridgeway

On Sunday, unemployment benefits officially ended for hundreds of thousands of Americans, thanks to maneuverings by Senate Republicans to prevent a vote that would have extended those benefits. Unless the extension is passed soon, some 1.1 million of the nation’s unemployed will see their unemployment expire in the coming month, and 5 million will lose benefits by June.

The House finally voted to extend benefits on Thursday, after several days of stalling and posturing. But in the Senate, the measure was blocked by Kentucky’s Jim Bunning. Politico reported that late into Thursday night, Bunning held out against repeated Democratic attempts to pass the extension by unanimous consent. In response to entreaties from colleagues across the aisle, other Republican senators rose to defend Bunning’s right to obstruct the vote, and Bunning himself was heard to utter, “Tough shit.” READ MORE:  http://www.commondreams.org/view/2010/03/01-3

Ralph Nader Was Right About Barack Obama March 1, 2010 by TruthDig.com by Chris Hedges

We owe Ralph Nader and Cynthia McKinney an apology. They were right about Barack Obama. They were right about the corporate state. They had the courage of their convictions and they stood fast despite wholesale defections and ridicule by liberals and progressives. 

Obama lies as cravenly, if not as crudely, as George W. Bush. He promised us that the transfer of $12.8 trillion in taxpayer money to Wall Street would open up credit and lending to the average consumer. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), however, admitted last week that banks have reduced lending at the sharpest pace since 1942. As a senator, Obama promised he would filibuster amendments to the FISA Reform Act that retroactively made legal the wiretapping and monitoring of millions of American citizens without warrant; instead he supported passage of the loathsome legislation. He told us he would withdraw American troops from Iraq, close the detention facility at Guantánamo, end torture, restore civil liberties such as habeas corpus and create new jobs. None of this has happened. READ MORE: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2010/03/01-0

He wanted any bill that enriches a corporation to be subject to a vote of approval by the "We the People"! "The world is my country.  To do good is my religion."  Author of COMMON SENSE, arguably the single document that most inspired the American Revolution.

Thomas Paine - Author-Patriot, 1737-1809.