April 02 2008 show notes

Topics, guests, upcoming events, quotes, links to articles, audio clips, books & bumper music.

Wednesday 02 April '08 National show

  • Clip:
    "Roosevelt is dead, his policies may live on, but we're in the process of doing something about that as well." Rush Limbaugh.
  • Article: Lieberman Falsely Claims McCain Doesn’t Support Privatization Of Social Security.
    "John McCain is not for the private accounts to take the place of social security. He’s for what Bill Clinton used to call Social Security plus."
  • Guest: CNS Editor-in-Chief Terence Jeffrey. He's a conservative, but they do news, not commentary. McCain's Plan -Privatizing social security and medicare. David Walker was on the show last week. One third of social security, goes to people under retirement age, like Michael Hutchison who broke his neck. Two thirds is old age poverty insurance. The Ryan-Sununu plan.
  • Bumper Music: Making Medicare Go Bust, Billionaires for Bush.
  • Article: McCain's Economy Platform: Big Tax Cuts, With Caveats.
    "In a wide-ranging interview last week, Sen. McCain offered the most-detailed account to date of his thinking on economic issues...

    On Social Security, the Arizona senator says he still backs a system of private retirement accounts that President Bush pushed unsuccessfully, and disowned details of a Social Security proposal on his campaign Web site...

    A centerpiece of a McCain presidential bid in 2000 was a plan to divert a portion of Social Security payroll taxes to fund private accounts, much as President Bush proposed unsuccessfully. Under the plan, workers could manage the money in stocks and bonds themselves to build a nest egg and, at retirement, also receive reduced Social Security payments from the government. Proponents say the combination of the nest egg and government payouts could give a retiree more than the current system, but opponents say the change would undermine the Social Security system.

  • The amount of money that goes through social security is enormous, so large that it almost equals the amount already in Wall Street; certainly more than the investment of those earning less than $100,000 a year.
  • Article: McCain, Letterman Spar on 'Late Show'.
  • Clip:
    [Chris Matthews]: "Senator, when I grew up in Philadelphia here, you could get a job coming out of high school. You know, you could work at (INAUDIBLE) You could get a real heavy-lifting job. You could provide for a family. Now, when you talk to the union guys here, can you honestly tell them that‘s going to come back? I mean, that was a wonderful time for a lot of people. You could provide for a whole family with a job, and you didn‘t have to have advanced education. Can you have those manufacturing jobs come back to Pennsylvania without a higher education level of the workers?"

    [Hillary Clinton]: "Well, Chris, you do have to be constantly educating and training the workforce. That goes without saying. I think that‘s an important goal for us to make, is that we‘re going to keep educating our workforce so that they can do the jobs which we can attract and keep here. We‘re losing jobs we shouldn‘t lose."
    'Hardball with Chris Matthews' for April 1.

  • Social Security.
  • Book: Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism by Ha-Joon Chang.
  • Book: War is a racket by Major General Smedley D. Butler, USMC.
  • Clip:
    "That very word freedom, in itself and of necessity, suggests freedom from some restraining power. In 1776 we sought freedom from the tyranny of a political autocracy - from the eighteenth-century royalists who held special privileges from the crown...

    "But since that struggle, man's inventive genius released new forces in our land, forces which reordered the lives of our people. The age of machinery, of railroads; of steam and electricity; the telegraph and the radio; mass production, mass distribution - all of these combined to bring forward a new civilization and with it a problem for those who sought to remain free.

    "For out of this modern civilization economic royalists carved new dynasties. New kingdoms were built upon concentration of control over material things. Through new uses of corporations and banks and securities, new machinery of industry and agriculture, of labor and capital - all undreamed of by the Fathers - the whole structure of modern life was impressed into this royal service...

    "Private enterprise, indeed, became too private. It became privileged enterprise, not free enterprise...

    "The royalists I have spoken of, the royalists of the economic order have conceded that political freedom was the business of the government, but they have maintained that economic slavery was nobody's business. They granted that the government could protect the citizen in his right to vote, but they denied that the government could do anything to protect the citizen in his right to work and his right to live...

    "These economic royalists complain that we seek to overthrow the institutions of America. What they really complain of is that we seek to take away their power. Our allegiance to American institutions requires the overthrow of this kind of power. In vain they seek to hide behind the flag and the Constitution. But in their blindness they forget what the flag and the Constitution stand for.


    Franklin D. Roosevelt, 27 June 1936, "A Rendezvous With Destiny" Speech to the Democratic National Convention, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

  • Book: "Greenspan's Fraud: How Two Decades of His Policies Have Undermined the Global Economy" by Ravi Batra.
  • Clip:
    "My problem with Senator McCain is he says we may have to stay in Iraq for 100 years if we have to. And I say no. I agree with Ron Paul, we marched in there, we can march out."
    Jesse Ventura.
  • Articles: Ricardo's "On labor" 1814, "On profits" 1816.
  • Book: An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith, 1776.
  • Ricardo's theory of competitive advantage. Adam Smith's "Wealth of Nations". For example, different countries have different land; one may be best suited for producing sheep and another for cattle and another for grapes. They would benefit by trading wool, milk, wine. But if two countries produce the same things, then they should protect their domestic production, particularly if the products are necessities; staple foods, defense items, infrastructure.

    What they call free trade is not really free trade. 50% of all international transactions are within corporations. It is the offshoring of jobs. Tariffs used to deter this; now there are tax advantages to doing it.

  • Article: Sam Harris on the Reality of Islam, Feb 7, 2006.
    "It is time we recognized — and obliged the Muslim world to recognize — that “Muslim extremism” is not extreme among Muslims. Mainstream Islam itself represents an extremist rejection of intellectual honesty, gender equality, secular politics and genuine pluralism. The truth about Islam is as politically incorrect as it is terrifying: Islam is all fringe and no center. In Islam, we confront a civilization with an arrested history. It is as though a portal in time has opened, and the Christians of the 14th century are pouring into our world."
  • Radical atheism...is it just as dangerous as the radical right wing evangelical movement? Is God real? Is religion real? Is it reasonable to kill people for their beliefs?
  • Guest: Sam Harris. Author, "The End of Faith", "Letter to A Christian Nation". He has written,
    Some propositions are so dangerous that it may even be ethical to kill people for believing them. This may seem an extraordinary claim, but it merely enunciates an ordinary fact about the world in which we live. Certain beliefs place their adherents beyond the reach of every peaceful means of persuasion, while inspiring them to commit acts of extraordinary violence against others. There is, in fact, no talking to some people.

    (pages 52-53 of The End of Faith).

    Hitler. Osama bin Laden. Tim McVeigh. Sociopaths. On Christianity versus non-belief he wrote,

    So let us be honest with ourselves: in the fullness of time, one side is really going to win this argument, and the other side is really going to lose.

    There is a neurobiological basis to love. It ensures the survival of the species. Thom:

    So what's wrong with feeling love for creation as opposed to an individual? Because I would define my experience of the religious experience in that context. I look out at the world and I see something that is entirely alive. I see something that is vibrating with intelligence. I see something that evokes in me a feeling that is just as strong as the feeling I get when I look at my wife or children who I love very much. That's the basis of religion. That is the basis for most moderate religious people.

  • Bumper Music: Losing My Religion, REM.
  • Clip:
    "You've got to kill the terrorists before the killing stops and I am for the President — chase them all over the world, if it takes ten years, blow them all away in the name of the Lord."
    Jerry Falwell, CNN Late Edition, 24 October 2004.
  • Bumper Music: Dreams, Stevie Nicks, Fleetwood Mac.
  • Bumper Music: You can leave your hat on, Randy Newman.
  • Article: Max Mosley faces calls to quit as Formula One chief after ‘Nazi’ orgy.
  • Eugenics.
  • Thom's article, "The Goddess of Democracy", originally published in the anthology From The Ashes not long after 9/11, includes a history of the Crusades.
  • Bumper Music: Against the Grain, L.K. Potts.
  • Article: Senators spar over listing polar bears as endangered.
    "Boxer and her Republican colleagues had a bit of a back-and-forth before the witnesses were able to testify. Both quoting from the Bible, Boxer and Inhofe sparred over the concept of protecting “God’s creation” Inhofe quoted Romans saying that false gods should not be made out of creation to be praised over the creator. Boxer responded, “You’re correct, liars should not be praised.” "
  • Ellen Ratner of Talk Radio News. She was on the Hill. Hearing on the Endangered Species Act. Boxer, Inhofe. Polar bear. Bible quotes. Marc Morano, who works for Senator Inhofe, is on the show tomorrow. Ellen will put the audio up. EPA, 16 state attorneys filed suit because carbon dioxide etc. are pollutants under the Clean Air Act. 60 days. Bush campaigned that it was a pollutant. McCain doing same? He'll be under so much pressure, he will flip. Bush on Afghanistan, praised NATO for acting. He pushed for Romania etc. Croatia, Albania, Macedonia. Greece said that Macedonia should not be called that because part of Greece is called that. Bernanke speaking about recession, inflation, the personal consumption is index up. He did not say if he would reduce interest rates. McCain said he probably would not announce his vice president until the convention. Conventions are less about nominating these days, so now are used for crownings. Thom and Ellen will be at both conventions. Ellen wants to get Thom to Dubai.
  • Guest: Jesse Ventura. Will he be on the ballot this fall? And his new book "Don't Start the Revolution Without Me!". The book is a journey. When he realized Bush was not a man of his word. Federalist. Power to states. Medical marijuana, dignity in death. Hunter S Thomson took his own life in a violent way. Cuba. Otto Reich out of line, the trip to Cuba was for trade and humanitarian reasons, not sex trade. Castro told him John F Kennedy was not killed by Oswald, Ventura could not stop Castro talking about it for 20 minutes. The Russians at time said they could talk to Kennedy. Castro said he was not suicidal - Cuba would have been wiped off face of earth if they had assassinated Kennedy. Castro offered doctors to the US after Katrina, politics interfered with a national disaster - politics should go out of the window in survival mode. Cuba has experience of hurricanes. He was against the war from the beginning, was fired from MSNBC. Infotainment networks. 60 minutes made money. Cleaning up after Bush; McCain would continue it. Don't let Democrats off the hook.
  • Bumper Music: Rich Man's War, Steve Earle.
  • Bumper Music: Crazy, Gnarls Barkley.
  • Spreading across the Internet:
    The George W Bush Presidential Library is now in the planning stages. You'll want to be the first at your corporation to make a contribution to this great man's legacy.

    The Library will include:

    The Hurricane Katrina Room, which is still under construction.

    The Alberto Gonzales Room, where you can't remember anything.

    The Texas Air National Guard Room, where you don't have to even show up.

    The Walter Reed Hospital Room, where they don't let you in.

    The Guantanamo Bay Room, where they don't let you out.

    The Weapons of Mass Destruction Room (which no one has been able to find).

    The Iraq War Room. After you complete your first tour, they make you go back for a second, third, fourth, and sometimes fifth tour.

    The Dick Cheney Room, in the famous undisclosed location, complete with shooting gallery.

    Plans also include:

    The K-Street Project Gift Shop - where you can buy (or just steal) an election.

    The Airport Men's Room, where you can meet some of your favorite Republican Senators.

    To highlight the President's accomplishments, the museum will have an electron microscope to help you locate them.

    Last, but not least, there will be an entire floor devoted to a 7/8 scale model of the President's ego.

    When asked, President Bush said that he didn't care so much about the individual exhibits as long as his museum was better than his father's.

  • Book: "The Alphabet Versus the Goddess: The Conflict Between Word and Image", Leonard Shlain.
  • Bumper Music: Democracy is coming to the USA, Leonard Cohen.
  • Good for General Motors, calling on the energy industry and government to provide more hydrogen pumps for fuel cell vehicles.
  • Guest: Bob Babik, GM Director of Vehicle Emissions Issues. Larry Burns, GM Vice President, Research & Development and Strategic Planning, gave a keynote address at the NHA's Annual Hydrogen Conference. They are working on fuel cell technology. Have they had push back from oil industry, like biodiesel has experienced?

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