Saturday, July 30, 2016

Democratic National Convention Forces Republicans to Release Hostage


I am hearing all over the news how surprised Republicans are to hear that Democrats appear to love their country after all! Imagine that.

They  had come to believe their own propaganda that Dems are anti-American haters, drilled incessantly for many years into the consciousness of ordinary Americans by a daily narrative of  Right Wing Media led by Rush Limbaugh and Fox News, their content given credibility when bleeding over into mainstream media outlets.

 Karl Rove took this narrative to the next level and made it into an art form. Marketing the Republican brand as "Support our Troops" was brilliantly evil. As a result, opposing the Iraq war became not supporting our troops. The ubiquitous (made in China) magnetic yellow ribbon supporting an illegal and immoral war of choice became a symbol of Republican pride. Rove was a marketing genius.

How could Dems who opposed the war sport one of those on their car? It was a no win situation. American flags became the property of Republicans as well - "What are you doing with a flag flying off your porch, I thought you were a democrat?".

Wow... insidious and odious and very effective. A compliant corporate media went along for the ride.

Republicans have been wrongly asserting their ownership over America and its ideals for some time now but with the nomination of Donald Trump the ugly truths of conservatism are finally coming out of the shadows and being broadcast around the world, unfiltered for all to see. Good people are questioning their old belief systems and the conservative propaganda machine's hold is finally slipping away.

“This country isn’t yours,” Jon Stewart said. “You don’t own it, it never was. There is no real America . . . You don’t own patriotism, you don’t own Christianity. You sure as hell don’t own respect for the bravery and sacrifice of military, police, and firefighters.” Jon is so right and the media is finally catching up.


Now,  imagine the language of patriotism used to advance a different agenda. One of peace, prosperity for all, good government, and inclusion. Imagine that.  The speeches at the DNC were reported as overwhelmingly positive, "Reganesque" the media cooed with blank, stunned expressions on their faces.

Of course Democrats have never stopped loving their country and maybe have had to love their country a little bit more because the narrative has been so negatively slanted for so long:  "Dems don't love their country because they believe in civil rights, a living wage, gay marriage, banking regulation, inclusion, universal health care, solar power/clean energy, no unnecessary wars, separation of church and state..." and on and on. Republicans are always looking for an easy way to divide the American people into us and them. That is their way. The new "you don't support our troops" is not speaking the phrase "Militant Islam".

But this moment in time seems to have the potential to actually pull Americans together culturally and spiritually after years of intentional division and cultural wedges being driven between us for political gain. We can only hope that this opportunity is embraced and a "new" American paradigm of one nation, indivisible, for all can be re-established root and branch.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Sanders Supporters Try To Save Hillary From Herself



 Now that Hillary Clinton has wrapped up the nomination, smug Hillary supporters are all up in my grill with some variation of this: "What the Bernie-bots... - (or fill in your favorite Sanders supporter derogatory term here) - need to do now  is... - (fill in your favorite have-a-bake-sale-for-Hillary support message) - and stop making so much noise! 

This condescending attitude toward Sanders supporters is not surprising coming from establishment Democrats who have always looked down on the liberal DFH arm of the Democratic party but obliviously misplaced. They should understand that if Sanders had not persisted consistently to push Hillary to the left the DNC platform would not include a $15 min wage or any opposition to the TPP whatsoever along with many other anti-corporate, labor centered planks that Clintonian establishment politics appeared to not seem concerned with prior to the primaries but that Trump is making his bread and butter.

The economy is now a bi-partisan issue. It is not just educated liberals but the "rabid right" as well who are also fed up with establishment politics. The teabaggers have finally figured it out, not in small part to Trump pulling back the curtain on 35 years of conservative economic policy that has always favored the few at the cost of the rest. Now, working class republicans of all stripes have finally stopped waiting for "Trickle Down" economics to work and are willing to grasp at straws, including electing Trump, to get some economic relief because after all it is all about "The Economy Stupid" when you get right down to it.

The reality is that Middle America has not had a raise in 35 years as corporations have shown record profits and have kept all the money for themselves instead of raising wages to match gains in productivity assuming the immoral Randian philosophy endorsed by Ronald Reagan that "Greed is Good".

You can fool some of the people all of the time but not forever. Republicans can only "trickle down" on the
Watch out for that Union guy, he wants your cookie.
middle class for so long and call it rain before someone figures it out. And Trump for all his faults, and they are disqualifying for local dogcatcher much less leader of the free world, has grasped this working class angst and run with it to the nomination to the chagrin of the conservative 1% who like things just the way they are and want to keep all the cookies and have us fight over crumbs.






Sanders and his multitude of supporters, (Sanders got 46% of the real delegates not an insignificant number no matter how you crunch the numbers), have moved Clinton's Overton Window to the left and as much as the rabid right would hate it, toward representative economic relief for the middle class in liberal fashion.

Trump has dressed this liberal notion of fairness in the economy in racism, fascism and hate, traditional conservative values but there is also a facet of protectionism another liberal tenet. There seems to be enough bluster and bigotry to offset the fact that Trump embraces an economic platform that liberals have been talking about for years. It's strange.

Sanders and his supporters keep trying to move the DNC platform further and faster to the left than may be politically expedient for the establishment candidate's relationship with her corporate supporters but necessary to facilitate change and well within the realm of possibility given the current climate of anti-establishment fervor. Sanders supporters, and I mean the 90% that support Clinton , are trying to save her from herself because we want her to win.

That's why we push her to the left without hesitation. That's why we need to ignore the outliers, the Hold-outs and concentrate on how we can help Clinton out of her bubble and into the reality of today's political climate. Clinton supporters need to accept that help and stop being smug and dismissive. I can't stress this enough. She will lose if she does not embrace labor and turn her back on Wall Street. Tim Kaine is not going to help. This is another obstacle that Sander's supporters are going to have to overcome for her as we try yet again to help her. Her establishment friends told the media today that she will flip on the TPP. Trump will shove that right up her ..wherever.., as he would say. One disparages Sanders' supporters at their own peril because we speak for the majority of Americans right now. Even the ones on the "rabid right" when it comes to all things economic.

When people are making enough money to support their families and live comfortably, when their children can go to college and the ones that don't go can still get jobs that pay a living wage the social issues that are plaguing us now tend to lessen and diminish historically. Look at the record. This isn't about Benghazi, terrorism, racial/LGBT injustice, crime or whatever the corporate media blames the ills of our country on today although these are very important issues that need to be addressed this is about money and the average American who does not make enough to live comfortably because the gains in our economy have all gone to the top 1% thanks to deregulation, trickle down economics and the corporate influence of government. Nothing will change until that changes. Until government stops being "The Problem" and Americans can realize that good government is the only thing that stands between them and corporate greed, that government can be a force for good and historically has been the ONLY thing that has truly bettered the standard of living for all average Americans, things will not change. This is the message and lesson of Bernie Sanders. For what its worth. Keep up the good fight.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

But, I'm Not Dead Yet!


I guess I really need to post more often or blogger will consider this an abandoned site.

Friday, March 20, 2015

And Now a Word from PooPourri


 Yep - I'm still in the eighth grade....

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Sunday, February 22, 2015

The Hillbilly Weatherman

He's gone viral and I couldn't be happier. Check out the series. Will make you smile! Especially with this effin' bitch of a winter. Now I know he's from New Hampshire, but I won't hold that against him.... he does a nice job on the weather, or so my Grandma tells me.... heh.



If anyone out there can convince this guy that he should take a buck or two once in a while and it wouldn't hurt anything please call, write, carrier pigeon, the poor boy so we can all at once make him a buck or two for his efforts? We all know he needs it, who the fuck doesn't?

He's over here too.
https://www.facebook.com/HillbillyWeather

Sunday, February 15, 2015

We Don't Need No Education

Congressman Says We Don’t Need Education Funding Because ‘Socrates Trained Plato On A Rock’ 

During a House Education and Workforce Committee proceeding on Wednesday to reauthorize the nation’s elementary and secondary education law, Rep. Dave Brat (R-VA) said, “Socrates trained Plato in on a rock and then Plato trained in Aristotle roughly speaking on a rock. So, huge funding is not necessary to achieve the greatest minds and the greatest intellects in history.”

More pearls of wisdom from the ignorance party. "The dumber our consituents, the better we like it", he did not purportedly say. 



Reminds me of this:



Representative Brat, you are no Tony Stark.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

This Winter In Parts and Pieces

Mornings


No Use for Weather- Pussies

Monday, February 9, 2015

Why We Need Universal Healthcare for All Americans.

This is a very complex issue with a simple answer. 

My friend "Joe" from Florida received a cancellation notice from Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield that his $46.00 per month crappy insurance was being cancelled due to not meeting the standards of the new Affordable Healthcare Act law. Joe is just south of 60, works a minimum wage job, and makes about $9500 a year. He actually did get some prescription benefits from his old plan and free well-care visits. But...no hospital coverage. None, nada, zip.


So, he should slide effortlessly into one of the new ACA categories for better healthcare for minimum cost, right?

WRONG. Anthem BC/BS wants to charge him over $350.00/mo. for about the same coverage with high deductibles. That's half his salary per month! When was his last raise? (see chart).

Now Florida, under Rick Scott, Healthcare Fraud Felon, has not expanded Medicaid or tried to help low income Floridians in any way, shape or fashion. I was on the phone with state ACA. I couldn't believe the level of callousness in how I was treated. After a lengthy interview with results of "denied", he told me that the free clinics were always open. Well, isn't that always the fallback position for these insurance company hacks? Let's see how that is going... Fewer Emergency Rooms Available as Need Rises


And here is the ACA's take:

More Answers: Plan changes and cancellations

  • What if my plan is cancelled and I can’t afford a new plan?
    If your non-Marketplace plan has been cancelled and you can’t afford a Marketplace plan to replace it, you can apply for a hardship exemption. This will allow you to buy a catastrophic plan.
    A catastrophic plan generally requires you to pay all your medical costs up to a certain amount, usually several thousand dollars. These policies usually have lower premiums than a comprehensive plan, but cover you only if you need a lot of care. They basically protect you from worst-case scenarios.
So how is this different from his previously "onerous" plan that didn't make the ACA cut? It's worse and still more expensive than his previous policy.

I don't get it. I was so psyched that we got at least something for healthcare in this country. Of course, the states that didn't pass medicaid expansion bear most of the blame, but even then guys like Joe just don't make the cut at $9500.00/yr. WTF.  AND healthcare insurers are seeing profits soar.

Thanks, Obamacare! Health insurer stocks soar

Healthcare is a basic human right in the rest of the civilized world, but not here. Why? Well, capitalism trumps humanism in this country and cash is king. The Golden Rule, he who has the gold makes the rules. And that's who wrote these ACA policies, Healthcare Insurers. It's the American way. Plain and simple. And wrong.

So, here is my answer as it was when the "Public Option" was first introduced and shot down by the Healthcare Industrial Complex. Statistics and Facts show that Public run is more efficient than private run every time no matter what. Post offices, prisons, schools, the list goes on and on. How many government agency heads make $7 million a year for managing healthcare? None. How many stockholders get dividend payments from the profits on Medicare? None, unless you count bond holders who share in the entire government bond increases. Cut out the middleman, let our government work for you. Screw Reagan as he screwed the middle class with his "Nine most terrifying words" speech that has done more damage to this country than any bomb, terrorist, or plague. Ignorant tool that he was. (Link to Reagan speech at the White House where CEO of Merrill Lynch told the president of the united states to "Speed it up")

The following video explains in easy to understand terms why we need Universal Healthcare in this country and why it shouldn't be a big deal to get it. But the 1% will fight it all the way. Profits over people, baby. Yeah!!


Until Universal Healthcare becomes law, my friend Joe and millions like him will continue to struggle. I will keep advocating for him, making the hard calls, taking the unreasonable excuses in stride and working within this broken system toward a plan that hopefully will work for him. And someday, hopefully, there will be one for all of us.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Why Does the US Always Side With Israel?

Money. Lobbyists. Conservative/Zionist Ideology. Ignorance.

Imagine a UN decree that gave a portion of New Jersey to the, oh lets say persecuted Sunnis in Iraq after the ISIS incursion this year. Call it "56%".
Note: Under the 1947 UN agreement Israel was given 56% of Palestine to establish an independent state. Israel has eroded the Palestinian homeland even more over the decades. (See Map).
How would that feel to a New Jersey resident? Especially one who had to leave their home under threats of violence and death with no compensation? How about the neighboring states? Think they'd be on board with a little resistance? Now think about this new state holding the original residents of NJ in a constant state of dominance, upheaval, and financial insecurity refusing to even acknowledge that New Jersey even exists. What would happen? Bet yur ass. Armed insurrection. So what's different there? And why do we as a country still support the aggressors?

AIPAC Is the Only Explanation for America's Morally Bankrupt Israel Policy
 via - HuffPo

Excerpts: 

The official name for Israel's latest assault on Gaza is "Operation Protective Edge." A better name would be "Operation Déjà Vu." As it has on several prior occasions, Israel is using weapons provided by U.S. taxpayers to bombard the captive and impoverished Palestinians in Gaza, where the death toll now exceeds 500. As usual, the U.S. government is siding with Israel, even though most American leaders understand Israel instigated the latest round of violence, is not acting with restraint, and that its actions make Washington look callous and hypocritical in the eyes of most of the world.

And...

This Orwellian situation is eloquent testimony to the continued political clout of AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) and the other hardline elements of the Israel lobby. There is no other plausible explanation for the supine behavior of the U.S. Congress--including some of its most "progressive" members--or the shallow hypocrisy of the Obama administration, especially those officials known for their purported commitment to human rights.

[snip]

And why did Netanyahu decide to go on another rampage in Gaza? As Nathan Thrall of the International Crisis Group points out, the real motive is neither vengeance nor a desire to protect Israel from Hamas' rocket fire, which has been virtually non-existent over the past two years and is largely ineffectual anyway. Netanyahu's real purpose was to undermine the recent agreement between Hamas and Fatah for a unity government. Given Netanyahu's personal commitment to keeping the West Bank and creating a "greater Israel," the last thing he wants is a unified Palestinian leadership that might press him to get serious about a two-state solution. Ergo, he sought to isolate and severely damage Hamas and drive a new wedge between the two Palestinian factions.

Yup - No Two-State solution. I thought the Israeli state was established side-by-side with the Palestinian state in 1948  The UN General Assembly approved the partition of Palestine into separate Arab and Jewish states and accords international status to Jerusalem. So what happened? 

[After the UN agreement was signed], The Arab League and its member states (especially Egypt, Syria, and Iraq) adopt a hard-line stance on the Palestinian issue as a means of demonstrating their anti-imperialism and asserting their newfound independence in foreign policy. They reject all attempts at compromise, including the UN partition plan. Britain refuses to assist in the implementation of the UN partition plan.

Thanks Britain.

So Palestine is left hanging in the wind, without a government and without political institutions. Chaos Doctrine anyone?


So they elect to fight for their homeland. Egypt and surrounding Arab nation/states take on an Israel backed by the US AND the USSR. And lose. War/Chaos doctrine dictate that the winners write the history books and so Israel had an excuse to take more of Palestine. Sorry, you shouldn't have questioned authority. This entrenched an endless cycle of persecution and rock throwing in response that we are still seeing to this day.
I supported Israel's persecution of Palestinians and all I got was this lousy t-shirt.
Historians will one day look back and ask how U.S. Middle East policy could be so ineffectual and so at odds with its professed values -- not to mention its strategic interests. The answer lies in the basic nature of the American political system, which permits well-organized and well-funded special interest groups to wield significant power on Capitol Hill and in the White House. In this case, the result is a policy that is bad for all concerned: for the Palestinians most of all, but also for the U.S. and Israel as well. Until the lobby's clout is weakened or politicians grow stiffer spines, Americans looking for better outcomes in the Middle East had better get used to disappointment and prepared for more trouble.

Ayuh. Read the whole thing here.