July 02 2009 show notes

  • In the US gas tax is fixed, not percentage. Rather than a gas tax, there are those in Congress who say to have a road tax instead, using GPS in every vehicle to measure how many miles people drive. It is not related to carbon usage, and heavier cars, for example SUVs, tear the road up more.
  • Saturday is Independence Day and tomorrow is a best of show, so Bernie Sanders joined the show today for a while.
  • Article: What’s So Super About a Supermajority?, Carl Hulse.
    "“We have 60 votes on paper,” Senator Harry Reid, the majority leader, said Wednesday in an interview. “But we cannot bulldoze anybody; it doesn’t work that way. My caucus doesn’t allow it. And we have a very diverse group of senators philosophically. I am not this morning suddenly flexing my muscles.” "
  • "Brunch with Bernie" with Senator Bernie Sanders, Independent of Vermont. He's at a senior center up northern Vermont. Harry Reid not flexing his muscles. Health care. They don't need 60, just 51. The 60 is needed to stop a filibuster. The entire caucus should stand united to block filibuster, then vote as they will on the actual bill. They could lose 10 people and still pass it, as the deciding vote is a Democrat. Bernie has been saying it all over the last couple of days. If they don't deliver, he worries about the next election.

    The health care debate is very, very fluid, nobody knows what the outcome will be, it is terribly important for people to weigh in. His committee bill out today with public option, it will be changed. others may not. SEIU / Wal-Mart / Center For America Progress letter to Obama yesterday with trigger. A trigger is not good enough. We will soon have the names of the members of the commission to analyze the causes of the economic crisis. Matt Taibbi Raw Story article. Enforce the SSherman Anti-Trust Act. They are going to do something about 'too big too fail'.

  • Bumper Music: Won't Get Fooled Again, The Who.
  • Article: CAP, Wal-Mart, SEIU Join Forces in Support of Employer Mandate, Matthew Yglesias.
  • Bumper Music: Kryptonite, 3 Doors Down.
  • Bumper Music: You can leave your hat on, Randy Newman.
  • Article: US Airways Flight Diverted After Passenger Gets Naked In His Seat.
  • Thom was flying to Europe, as they left the ground, he took half a sleeping pill, an unfamiliar one, prescribed specifically for this. He woke up on a dark airplane on the floor with a blanket over him. Due to head winds, the plane had stopped in Newfoundland for gas, all passengers were supposed to get off the plane, but he could not be woken, so they hid him.
  • Article: UnitedHealth Backdating Settlement Approved by Judge.
  • Are the 10 not supporting the public option hearing it from their constituents? Yes, but for every talk show like Thom's, which has around 3 million listeners, you have Hannity's encouraging their people, and it is 10:1 against single payer, public option.
  • Clip:
    [Thom Hartmann]: What's the best thing to do when your drains are running slow or clogged up?

    [Joe the Plumber]: Well, what I find the best thing to do is flush your pipes out. I always tell my customers at least once a week in the kitchen, usually that's where, you know, if you have a garbage disposal or ? you fill up both basins, or the single basin, with cold water, hot water really doesn't make a difference, and flush your pipes at least once a week, help that keep it going strong, because the food settles in the pipe and then creates blockages. So flushing the pipes out helps tremendously.

  • Article: Joe the Plumber won’t run for office: “You know, I talked to God about that and he was like, ‘No.’” .
  • The Powell Memo or Manifesto.
  • Talk shows should help organize a march for health care? Show hosts not monolithic, they don't get together, but Thom promotes events when they happen. He promotes Ben from Aloha's events.
  • Medicare and Medicaid are single payer, paid for out of first $100,000. Bernie's bill, Conyers' HR676, Medicare for all, minus the holes.
  • Article: CEI Releases Global Warming Study Censored by EPA, Richard Morrison, CEI.
  • Article: EPA Says Emissions Are Threat To Public: Finding Could Lead to Greenhouse Gas Limits Juliet Eilperin, April 18, 2009 .
    "The EPA's proposed finding -- which is subject to a 60-day comment period -- comes almost exactly two years after the Supreme Court ordered the agency to examine whether emissions linked to climate change should be curbed under the Clean Air Act. The finding makes clear that the agency views these pollutants as threats to public health, the environment and national security.

    "In both magnitude and probability, climate change is an enormous problem," reads the finding, which identifies carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride as contributing to global warming. "The greenhouse gases that are responsible for it endanger public health and welfare within the meaning of the Clean Air Act."

    In her statement releasing the finding, EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson said that while global warming pollution is "a serious problem now and for future generations," Americans can combat it without making a major economic sacrifice. "This pollution problem has a solution -- one that will create millions of green jobs and end our country's dependence on foreign oil."

  • Guest: Myron Ebell, director of energy and global warming policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. Thom said you guys have really done it, they got CBS News with a straight face to report that their research paper by Alan Carlin (an economist at the EPA, it was an unsolicited paper) dissenting with the EPA view on climate change, was censored. They have 5 staff working on climate issues. Their budget was $5.2m last year, a little lower this year. They did "CO2: they call it pollution, we call it life". There is a draft copy on their site. IPCC data. Steve Johnson solicited comment on how the EPA should regulate CO2, there were hundreds of comments from all over, Lisa Jackson April 18 made endangerment finding. They said they had ignored the comments. It is usual for different offices of the EPA to offer analysis of rule-making. Cap and Trade.
  • Bumper Music: I'm Too Sexy, Right Said Fred.
  • Article: Sanford: ‘I'm Too Sexy For My State', Andy Borowitz.
  • Article: Cops Raid Lesbian-Hosted Fundraiser for California Pol, Kilian Melloy. Fundraiser for Francine Busby, who had run for the Congressional post of Randy "Duke" Cunningham.
  • Bumper Music: Because I Got High, Afroman.
  • Article: Conn. police say pot dealer used McNugget box.
  • Thom riffed on the founders, with details updated from when he first published them in his book. It went something like this (a previous rant - it may have been updated since)...

    56 signers of the Declaration of Independence, politicians, doctors, ministers, merchants, nine of them were farmers, Ben Franklin hard to define, he was a printer, renaissance man. There was a musician, there was a teacher. They ranged in their ages from their 20s to Franklin in his 80s. Thomas Jefferson, 33, was about the average age. They were the most idealistic and determined among the colonists, while the conservatives of their day said America should remain a colony of England forever. These liberal radicals believed in both individual liberty and societal obligations ... 

    A nation must care for the lives of its own. Guaranteed liberty and ensure its citizens’ happiness – a word in the Declaration of Independence and in the Constitution – a radical concept that had never before appeared in any nation’s founding documents. The signers wrote in the Declaration, “We mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.” And it was a simple statement of fact. The day they signed that document each legally became a traitor and was sentenced to death for treason by the legal government that controlled their lands and their homes. As Ben Franklin pointed out, they stood at a point of no return, and “Indeed we must all hang together”, he said, “Otherwise, we shall most assuredly hang separately."

    John Hancock signed his name. He said he was signing his name large enough that the king can read it without glasses and now double the reward. The reward, the king had put a £500 reward on John Hancock’s head for sedition. What happened to John Hancock from signing the Declaration of Independence, just six months later his newborn daughter died from complications of childbirth arising from his wife’s fleeing the oncoming British army. Although the richest of the founders, wealthy by the standards of the day, he would hardly qualify as rich by today’s standards.

    He founded no dynasty. No foundation today dispenses money. John Hancock’s legacy: our nation. Robert Morris, who signed it, from Philadelphia, lost his entire shipping fleet, wiping out his modest fortune. Thomas Nelson of Virginia ordered his own home destroyed because it had been taken by General Cornwallis as headquarters. He died in poverty at the age of 50 as a result of signing the Declaration of Independence. William Ellery of Rhode Island lost everything as a result of signing the Declaration of Independence, as did Virginia’s Carter Braxton, Benjamin Harrison, Pennsylvania’s George Clymer, New York’s Philip Livingston, Georgia’s Lyman Hall, and New Jersey’s Francis Hopkinson. The British destroyed New York’s Francis Lewis’s property and threw his wife into such a hellhole of a jail that she died two years later. Three of South Carolina’s four signers, Edward Rutledge Thomas Heyward, Jr. and Arthur Middleton were captured by the British and held in a filthy unheated prison and brutally tortured for over a year before George Washington freed them in a prisoner exchange. George Washington, who refused to allow the American soldiers to torture the British, he said we will not sink to their level. New Jersey farmer John Hart’s wife one died shortly after he signed the Declaration of Independence and his thirteen children were scattered among sympathetic families to hide them from conservative loyalists. He never saw them again, dying alone and wracked with grief 3 years later.

    Altogether seventeen of 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence were entirely wiped out by the war they declared and died in poverty. New Jersey State Supreme Court Justice Richard Stockton took his wife and children into hiding after he signed the Declaration but conservatives loyal to the crown turned him in. He was so badly beaten and starved that he died in prison. His home was looted and his wife and children lived the rest of their lives as paupers. Altogether nine of the men in that room died. Four lost all their children as a direct result of putting their names to the Declaration of Independence. Every single one had to flee his home and after the war 12 returned to find only rubble.

    After the war was over and the conservatives had fled to Canada and England, the survivors of the new American nation met to put into final form the legal structure of the nation that they had just birthed. It was not to be a nation of cynical selfish Libertarians who believe the highest value is “individual freedom and independence from society” where the greatest motivator was greed. It was not to be a kingdom ruled by a warlord or leader. It was not to be a theocracy where religious leaders made the rules as had been the case in several states, particularly Massachusetts. And it was not to be a feudal nation ruled by the rich. This new nation, the United States of America, founded as a result of the sacrifice that these men and women, these families, that today we can take back to its ideals as Benjamin Franklin told Philadelphia’s Mrs. Powell as he was walking out of the constitutional convention after they had pulled together the Constitution in 1787. She said, “What sort of nation has been conceived?” Ben Franklin: “It’s a Republic, madam, if you can keep it”.

  • Article: Killing King Coal, Scott Martelle, March 2009.
  • Guest: "Advertiser Success" segment: Mike Perrotti. Owner, Black Cat Plumbing, Portland, Oregon advertising on KPOJ. Sustainable, local sources, progressive, do solar hot water, just done first commercial composting toilet in the region.
  • . "They Rule allows you to create maps of the interlocking directories of the top companies in the US in 2004. The data was collected from their web sites and SEC filings in early 2004, so it may not be completely accurate - companies merge and disappear and directors shift boards".
  • Guest: Joe Ponzio. Founder of F Wall Street dot com (worked on Wall Street until 2002). His new book, "F Wall Street: Joe Ponzio's No-Nonsense Approach to Value Investing for the Rest of Us". Conservative investment, his portfolio up 3%, the market is down 40%. Mutual funds not good. The economy, how can we put it back together? If not, why invest now? "Screwed" . You have a choice. Mutual fund will do worse than the market, people are drinking Coca Cola, many Chinese have not had it yet, so there are still some companies worth buying, over time will do well. They look to hold investments for 3-5 years, not day trading. Investment, not pieces of paper. An investor friend of Thom says there is a 20 year cycle of companies vs. commodities, told Thom to sell stock and buy commodities, Thom did 5 years ago. The market carried on rising, but now looking good. Commodities supply and demand, demand was up, not supply. You still need a good price. Buy corporate bonds, you know what you will get if they are good, you can sleep at night? Look at the company. Currency is not their area.
  • Article: Vegetarians 'avoid more cancers'.
  • Article: Biological 'Fountain Of Youth' Found In New World Bat Caves.
  • Article: Pets Pass Superbug to Humans.
  • Article: Stressed-out DNA turns mousy brown hair gray: Stem cells responsible for hair color lose self-renewing abilities, Laura Sanders.
  • Article: Replacing microRNA may offer new possibilities for cancer treatment: study in mice shows liver tumors shrunk or didn't develop..
  • Article: Surprising number of teens think they'll die young.
  • Bumper Music: Miniature Disasters, KT Tunstall.
  • The morality of investing. Coca Cola, obesity, water depletion, etc.
    1) when you buy coca cola stock, not a penny goes to them apart from IPO.
    2) as shareholder you can go to meetings, raise hell. Some Catholic nuns have been doing it for years.
  • Bumper Music: Democracy is coming to the USA, Leonard Cohen.
  • Ellen Ratner of Talk Radio News. She was at Fox, about to get on. President's speech, first time did this, he finished and was being asked questions, put together a group of people doing green jobs. Green jobs will save jobs, save oil, put aside posturing and politics. He talked about how to increase productivity. It took us years to get into this mess, will take more than a few months to get out. Unemployment figures. Joe Biden on 2 day surprise Iraq visit "reestablishing contact with the leaders", he is to oversee Iraq policy. 12% up factory orders, mostly air, maybe because of loss of confidence in Airbus. US soldier captured, Afghanistan. North Korea test fired missiles. Obama health care, Dodd / Kennedy bill to be ready by 13/14 July, same time as Sotomayor hearings. Sherrod Brown, 97% of Americans would be able to get insured. They ought to be able to get by with 50 votes if they can get past a filibuster. Does Harry Reid have the ability to get them to stop filibusters? One of the 60 is Joe Lieberman. People running for office are running scared.
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