Monday - August 31 2009 - Highlights

healthcare is right imagesHour One: "Does the healthcare debate show how corporate power has nearly completely destroyed Democracy!" Thom debates Dr. Yaron Brook of the Ayn Rand Institute  www.aynrand.org

Hour Two: How long will Dick Cheney be able to stay out of jail?

Hour Three: Have the trans-national CEOs taken over America?

"Labor Segment - Hoffa threatens blue dog Democrats!" Teamsters General President James Hoffa joins Thom www.teamster.org

Comments

DRichards (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#1

Study Says World's Stocks Controlled by Select Few

Companies from US, UK and Australia have the most concentrated financial power.

http://www.insidescience.org/research/study_says_world_s_stocks_controll...

By Lauren Schenkman
Inside Science News Service

WASHINGTON -- A recent analysis of the 2007 financial markets of 48 countries has revealed that the world's finances are in the hands of just a few mutual funds, banks, and corporations. This is the first clear picture of the global concentration of financial power, and point out the worldwide financial system's vulnerability as it stood on the brink of the current economic crisis.

A pair of physicists at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich did a physics-based analysis of the world economy as it looked in early 2007. Stefano Battiston and James Glattfelder extracted the information from the tangled yarn that links 24,877 stocks and 106,141 shareholding entities in 48 countries, revealing what they called the "backbone" of each country's financial market. These backbones represented the owners of 80 percent of a country's market capital, yet consisted of remarkably few shareholders....

B Roll (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#2

On Monday, August 24, Mark posted several comments about people who criticize Israeli policy in the Israel/Palestine conflict. I’m going to comment on two of his claims.

http://www.thomhartmann.com/2009/08/23/highlights-for-monday-august-24th...

“Mark August 23rd, 2009, 6:26 pm

I have to confess that I am much less impressed with these “passionate” pro-Palestinian advocates than some other people seem to be; too bad the Palestinians and their advocates are not as passionate about peace…”

And
Mark August 24th, 2009, 9:39 am
… I’ve read on this page absurd “discussions” critical of Thom’s alleged pro-Israeli “bias.” Being pro-Israel and being progressive are incompatible? Now who is way out there now? Don’t these people have ANY knowledge of history? Any idea of cause and effect? Well, if I’m “arrogant,” that is certainly preferable to being purposefully ignorant, esepecially to the point of being anti-Semitic.
There were a few other comments, one of which I addressed last Friday, but I’ll take this opportunity to reiterate a point I made the previous Friday, August 21.

Mark claims that people he describes as pro-Palestinian aren’t passionate about peace, have no knowledge of history and are purposefully ignorant to the point of being anti-Semetic. He assumes that pro-Palestinian equals anti-Israeli. He doesn’t understand that some of us come from the orientation of being pro-justice.

So here’s a re-edited version of a post I made on August 21. It’s a list of well known progressives and peace activists that Mark apparently thinks aren’t passionate about peace and are purposely ignorant to the point of being anti-Semetic.

Nelson Mandela is a Nobel Peace Pride winner.

Desmond Tutu is a Nobel Peace Pride winner.

Jimmy Carter is a Nobel Peace Pride winner.

Mairead Maguire is a Nobel Peace Pride winner.

Maguire was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her work in bringing peace to Northern Ireland. She was on the Spirit of Humanity along with Cythnthia Mckinney and others; the boat that was intercepted by the Israeli Navy while bringing humanitarian supplies to Gaza. I added her to this list.

Right there you have four Nobel Peace Prize winners whose criticism of Israel is similar to mine. Imagine, four Nobel Peace Prize winners who aren’t passionate about peace.

Amy Goodman, a Jewish American woman who Thom has recently said was the only person doing real journalism.

Chris Hedges – a favorite of Thom’s has an article from December 2008 on AlterNet “Israel’s ‘Crime Against Humanity”.

Naomi Klein – author of The Shock Doctrine made a video in Palestine calling for a boycott of Israel. Klein is Jewish and also a peace activist.

Ron Kovic, author of “Born on the Fourth of July” and peace activist who was grievously wounded in Vietnam.

Cynthia McKinney, a former Georgia congresswoman who Thom has referred to as a friend. She’s a long time peace activist and who has been intercepted by the Israeli navy twice trying to bring humanitarian supplies into Gaza and recently was part of the Viva Palestina convey bringing supplies into Gaza. That’s not passion.

Cindy Sheehan, aka “The Peace Mom” and Gold Star Mother who singlehandedly revived the peace movement with her extended protests outside Bush’s Texas ranch in 2005. I guess she’s not passionate about peace either. Last I heard she’s protesting against Obama’s war policies on Martha’s Vineyard where he and his family are vacationing.

Arundhati Roy, another internationally known author and activist mentioned by Thom.

Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn and Harold Pinter, who co-wrote or signed “An Open Letter On Israel/Palestine” along with Arundhati Roy. Chomsky, Zinn and Pinter, all well known long time peace activists are all Jewish.

Medea Benjamin, a co-founder of Code Pink who’s been repeatedly arrested protesting war, but does she really care about peace. Benjamin is Jewish.

Thom Hayden, a recent guest on Thom’s show who’s anti-war activism goes back to the Vietnam War.

And for good measure

Progressive Democrats of America (PDA), is an organization that Thom sits on the advisory board of. Many of the board members are Jewish. There’s a fairly recent article on the PDA website with the title “PDA Reiterates Call for an End to Israeli Occupation”.

Does Mark believe that the list above is full of people who aren’t passionate about peace or are purposely ignorant anti-Semites? Maybe he can’t tell the difference between Amy Goodman and Rasta.

The original list with a few more people and more details about their thoughts on the conflict can be found at

http://www.thomhartmann.com/2009/08/16/friday-august-21-2009/#comments

It’s “Part Two – How do other prominent progressive view the Israeli/Palestinian Conflict?”

Mark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#3

When Hamas and the Palestinians are "passionate" about "peace," then talk to me. Until then...

Mark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#4

It was a sad day when the Seattle Post-Intelligencer closed its doors, for unlike the Seattle Times, it represented the progressive pretensions (and I do mean pretensions) of the city. The Times, on the other hand, in an attempt to increase circulation has thrown red meat to attract the flesh-eating right. The Times has often filled what little remains of their slim news section with tabloid-like stories of violence and mayhem, usually by people or groups who are not white, obviously playing to the paranoia and fears of that right-wing white audience. The only “constant” has been the Times’ gender politics, but then again, I’ve always believed that some issues are less about liberalism than about narcissism and tyranny. The Times also endorsed George Bush over Al Gore in 2000, although it may have only been the Blethens’ in-your-eye response to the 2000-2001 newspaper strike; its (reluctant) endorsement of Kerry and Obama may have been due only to fears of alienating a large segment of its readership.

An editorial in the Times this past Saturday also indicates that it has little sympathy for labor rights. It applauded the 5-4 state supreme court decision to allow the malicious, capricious actions of Linda Brennan, the CEO of a Spokane –based nonprofit, Nova Services, to stand in the firing of two managers for alleged “insubordination, disloyalty and organizing against her,” as well as the dismissal of four other managers and two employees who walked out in protest.

According to the complaint put forward by the managers and employees, they had attempted to warn the Nova Services board of directors about Brennan’s “inattention” to day-to-day activities, “hostile” and “dismissive” comments to employees and disabled clients, which “demoralized” employees. The employees also claimed that Brennan had “mismanaged” budgeting, fundraising, and “partnership relations,” and that “she had put the entire organization, including the jobs of every employee, at risk.” It was also claimed that Brennan had hired her mother to spy on employees and report back to her, making employees fearful of speaking to each other.

Employees also charged that Brennan removed grievances against her from employment files, and that she had threatened to “get rid” of employees by “making them want to leave.” They also reported that Brennan's “harassing, hypercritical and dismissive treatment of and violent
verbal outbursts to staff were demoralizing and humiliating; and that there
was high turnover among production staff because of Brennan's harassing
treatment of them.” The Nova Services board hired an attorney to investigate, and who suggested that the board either fire Brennan or two managers she particularly didn’t like. The board decided to fire the managers. Emboldened in her malice, Brennan then informed the other employees unhappy with her “style” that they could “go forward” with her, or hit the highway. The employees then informed the board that they wanted action on their complaints, and the following Monday did appear for work, which Brennan took to mean that they had “resigned.”

None of this was every reported by the Times. The dismissed managers and employees attempted to argue that they had a right to organize and petition for redress of grievances without fear of being fired, but the state supreme court and the Seattle Times editorial board took the narrow view that any employer can fire “at will” any worker who is not covered by a labor contract, and not have to “prove anything to a third party.” This attitude shouldn’t come as a surprise, given that the Times “endured” a labor strike earlier in the decade, with its editors holding down the fort. Thus it should come as no surprise to me that they would be narrow in their view of the rights of labor.

Mark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#5

In the last line of the last paragraph of the previous post I meant "did not" appear for work.

Ameire (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#6

Tom please read and see if you can get this Republician on air. I receive this in an email from a group of Don Siegelman supports...

One Republican's view on single payer

Jack Bernard writes an Op_Ed for the Columbs, GA Ledger-Inquirer:

I am a Republican, former chairman of the Republican Party in Jasper County, Ga., and chair of that county commission. ...

In my view, it is unpatriotic to continue to lie to the American public about the situation facing us. Over the last 10 years, wages have gone up by about one-fourth. Health insurance premiums have gone up well over 100 percent. We cannot continue along this path to fiscal destruction. Inaction is not an option.

It is also against American values to mislead the public into believing that everyone can get good care even if they do not have insurance. The mark of a great nation is not how well it treats its privileged, but rather how well it treats its downtrodden. On this measure, we fail miserably; strange for a nation that prides itself on being the most religious democracy in the world. Where in the Bible did Jesus say “might makes right” or “those with the gold rule”?

Very few health or insurance professionals advocate for a single-payer system, the best way to control costs and ensure access. I hear all sorts of reasons: rationing (really, like HMOs do not do that now), paperwork (apparently insurance company bureaucracy does not count), socialism (come on — practitioners will still be independent and we all know it) and so forth. It is rare that we hear the underlying cause openly stated: greed. It will cut my income.

The members of Physicians for a National Health Plan are an exception to this rule. If you take a look at their Web site, www.pnhp.org, the rationale for a single-payer system is clearly articulated. The French have the top system in the world, with something like Medicare covering 66 percent of costs and private insurance for the rest, yet their cost per capita is half of ours. Universal Medicare will both control costs and achieve universal access to high quality care. Congressmen would get the same insurance as you and I. You better believe your coverage would be just as good as or better than what you are getting now.

The problem is not technical; it is political. It is high time we put the country ahead of ourselves and establish a single-payer system.

Jack Bernard is CEO of Monticello (Ga.) Health Care Solutions and a former chairman of the Jasper County Commission and the Jasper County Republican Party.

Mark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#7

Just in case anyone wants to know what comes after "Until then..., " all there is, is hypocrisy, mendacity, and hot air. It takes two to tango. Jimmy Carter knew that when Egypt's Sadat made the bold move to buck the rest o the Arab world and seek peace with Israel. Arafat chose to make the move in the 90s because he had been marginalized and was losing control, cooped-up in Tunisia. The Israelis had leaders who were willing to make the bold move to deal with him, if only because he was the closest thing to a "leader" the Palestinians had to offer. Unfortunately, Hamas didn't want peace, and had the "ear" of enough people to completely disrupt the process. You can call that "pedestrian" if you want, but those are the simple facts.

I don't care how many pro-Palestinian political leaders you throw out there. If they wanted to put their credibility on the line (which they don't), they would call for Iran, Syria and all those these other "neighbors" to end their anti-peace rhetoric and support of terrorism, and deal seriously with Israel. They could put pressure on Hamas to actually put demands on the table that don't include the destruction of Israel. But they won't do that. Are they hypocrites? Cowards? Anti-Semites? That is all this one-sided commentary is telling me. I just want someone to say that Hamas needs to make the move toward peace. If you don't want to say that, that anything else you have to say is worthless.

SukiRainbowPup (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#8

THE COST OF THE PUBLIC OPTION

I went to Rep. Jay Inslee's Town Hall Meeting yesterday in Washington State. I thought it was funny that the tea-bagging Right was afraid that public option might be so successful that eventually we WOULD have a Single Payer system.

Not to worry Tea Baggers...The cost of the Public Option, according to Representative Inslee will insure that the Blood-Sucking Insurance companies will keep us in the poor house for years to come.

The cost to buy into the Public Option will be (according to Jay) 12%, with subsidies phasing out at 400% of the poverty level (roughly $88k).

So at $88k gross salary a year, a family of four would cost about $880/month to buy into Public Health. Did they think 12% was reasonably sustainable? And this plan doesn't tell us what copays and medicines will cost on top of $880 PER MONTH.

I totally agree with THOM that we should advocate for expanded Medicare for All where our right to bargain with big Pharma has not already been bargained away.

Sigh.

FWIW, the Congressional Budget Office calculated that on 3% of Americans (or 9,000,000 people) would opt into this program. My guess would be that it would only be the 9,000,000 or so that would most likely qualify for 100% subsidies.

Again Sigh.

Medicare for All!!!

Mike (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#9

If you have to PAY FOR IT... it's not a right...

Mike (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#10

Thom's info on infant mortality rate is deceptive... he says we are ranked somewhere in the 30's as one of the worst countries for infant mortality... what Thom is NOT telling you is that the US uses the W.H.O. definition for a live birth, whereas most other countries disregard many of the "definition" for a live birth... Some of the countries Thom says has a better IMR than the US, doesn't count any baby born weighing less than 500 grams, or any baby born before 24 weeks, or any baby that dies in the first 24-72 hours after birth... Taking all these factors into account, it is my view that the US IMR number is probably correct because we use the whole W.H.O. definition... what is wrong is that the other countries IMR number is artificially low because they DON'T use the entire W.H.O. definition... SO to say that their health care system is better than ours based on IMR is.

Mike (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#11

The US health care system doesn't appear to cost much more than any other system... WHY? Thom says that Medicare operates a 3%... This number does not take into account collection of revenue, cutting the checks, any many other aspects of administration...

Thom also talks about other countries health care systems... and how well they work... a "national" health care system concept may function in a "small localized" scenario just as socialism/communism concept of government does... but once the factor of anonymity comes into play, these types of systems are doomed to fail... WHY??? No accountability... Explain this to your listeners Thom...

Titantom (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#12

Put a sign at the bottom of your T.V.

Cheney/Bush Did not keep us safe for 8 Years

This is the first lie that comes out of their mouth every time they speak. We as Strong Americans need to stop any conversation that starts with "We kept this country safe for 8 Years." I have emailed MSNBC this morning on it. I recommend everyone to do the same. Contact the Democratic strategist as well.

This lie is propogated just like Iraq had something to do with 911. We have to stop the lies.

Quark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#13

Ameire,

Thanks for your post. I sent the Jack Bernard op-ed in emails to both my senators (Klobuchar and Franken) this a.m.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#14

After listening to Thom Hartmann, it is good to see Wal-Mart attempting get into his good graces by advertising during his show on AM 620 KPOJ & KTLK 1150AM. Hopefully, Wal-Mart will generate no increased patronage from their smarmy ads but Thom will be increase exponentially in market share.

Quark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#15

Thom just talked about the possibility of Dems. leaving the party. That ties into the preface of my aforesaid emails to my senators:

Dear Sen. ___,

I'm writing as a longtime DFL volunteer/contributor. I worked on all 3 of Paul Wellstone's campaigns, yours and others, as well as attending the state DFL convention as a delegate.

Real healthcare reform is stifled by money, as we know. Please set monetary issues aside and do what is best for our citizens. A single-payer healthcare system is, of course, the best and most efficient one for our countrymen. It works well in ALL OTHER industrialized countries in the world. We haven't been able to have that, of course, because of all the money that changes hands from the entrenched healthcare corporations to Congress. A REAL so-called "public option" is better than nothing, though.

In my opinion, if we cannot significantly reform how healthcare is delivered (NOT through the insurance Enron-like cartel that has our people captured by a stranglehold), we will finally find out once and for all whether our government works any longer. If it doesn't, I think that many of us disgusted Democratic activists will throw in the towel and leave the party. This fight will tell us everything...

Please read part of an op ed piece by a Georgia Republican (pasted below.)

Please actively support single-payer healthcare (or at least support a REAL public option.)

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#16

@Mike:

Rights have always been paid for in blood and money. The U.S. Revolution was not free. Eternal vigilance is not free. The defense of rights requires assuming personal responsibly for yourself and others and those who defend must be willing to step into the breach.

I know there are folk that refuse to acknowledge community requires personal responsibly and commitment. I know that there are folk that refuse to acknowledge salient facts. Defaulting to mindless knee-jerk jingoism and thrown verbal bombs does not make you correct. Your ranting screeds reek of avoiding and denying responsibility. But that is okay . . .

We will look out for your needs and rights even though you obvious refuse do so for yourself.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#17

The limited definition of ‘force monopoly’ argument is about avoiding personal responsibility for community.

It is good to see personal responsibility is still so hotly argued against by the Ayn Rand Institute.

Glenda (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#18

Words like ‘change’ and ‘reform’ engender fear in a great number of people, especially in seniors and especially so when discussing medical care. I contend that health care reform advocates made a major blunder in naming the issue. In addition to being simple and succinct, the phrase 'Medical Security' brings to mind the two most successful and familiar (and sacred) U.S. government programs: Medicare and Social Security. Perhaps there is still time to reverse the damage by replacing, ‘Health Care Reform’ with 'Medical Security’ in future conversations.

DRichards (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#19

"Emergency Control" of the Internet

By Tom Burghardt

URL of this article: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=14964

Global Research, August 30, 2009
Antifascist Calling

You have to hand it to congressional Democrats. Mendacious grifters whose national security agenda is virtually indistinguishable from Bushist Republicans, when it comes to rearranging proverbial deck chairs on the Titanic, the party of "change" is second to none in the "all terrorism all the time" department.
While promising to restore the "rule of law," "protect civil liberties" while "keeping America safe," in practice, congressional Democrats like well-coiffed Republican clones across the aisle, are crafting legislation that would do Dick Cheney proud...

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#20

@Mark:

Rather than decrying an unfair advantage that Medicare has in delivering healthcare, would not the more capitalistic response be to ask why business is failing to deliver a better product for a cheaper price? Is that not the rationalization for business being in healthcare at all? It is not just plan good business to avoid the costs of administration? Why do you seek to instill the lack of efficiency and effectiveness into providing healthcare? Is defending and retaining fascism so important to you that you must destroy the tenants of capitalism?

DRichards (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#21

Obama Keeps Bush's Search Policy For Travelers
by Ellen Nakashima

The Obama administration will largely preserve Bush-era procedures allowing the government to search -- without suspicion of wrongdoing -- the contents of a traveler's laptop computer, cellphone or other electronic device, although officials said new policies would expand oversight of such inspections.
http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2009/08/28-10

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#22

SORRY!!! That should have been @MIKE not at-Mark about Medicare. I am an erf.

Quark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#23

Paul Krugman's op-ed today summed up our current political and reform problems very well. Here's the last paragraph:

"I’m not saying that reformers should give up. They do, however, have to realize what they’re up against. There was a lot of talk last year about how Barack Obama would be a “transformational” president — but true transformation, it turns out, requires a lot more than electing one telegenic leader. Actually turning this country around is going to take years of siege warfare against deeply entrenched interests, defending a deeply dysfunctional political system."

" Missing Richard Nixon "

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/31/opinion/31krugman.html?_r=1&ref=opinion

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#24

NOT OBAMA striking

Marty (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#25

Two Freudian slips in the same segment, Thom?

renazantz (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#26

WILL SOMEONE PLEASE TELL THOM WHAT HE JUST SAID.....OBAMA HE MEANT OSAMA.....

Titantom (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#27

Put a sign at the bottom of your T.V.

Cheney/Bush Did not keep us safe for 8 Years

This is the first lie that comes out of their mouth every time they speak. We as Strong Americans need to stop any conversation that starts with “We kept this country safe for 8 Years.” I have emailed MSNBC this morning on it. I recommend everyone to do the same. Contact the Democratic strategist as well.

This lie is propogated just like Iraq had something to do with 911. We have to stop the lies.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#28

Soma is a muscle relaxant.

DDay (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#29

A note of apology to the readers of this blog for my long winded submission today. If you would like to skip to the meat portion just scroll to the last paragraph! The first portion and bulk of my words are an admittedly self indulgent recounting of personal experiences I've had with the Kennedy saga, They may or may not be of interest to you. So skip now!..... if so inclined. I spent many hours this past Friday evening and then again Saturday watching the wake and the funeral ceremonies for Senator Ted Kennedy. I feel compelled to comment in a personal way.
I never had the opportunity to meet the Senator, but his life and that of his family has criss-crossed my path for all of my life. It all came back to me as I watched the coverage of his passing.
Memories, some forgotten for a while, began to flood in as I watched the wake Friday night broadcast on MSNBC. The first jolt came when former Senator John Culver, (Dem. Iowa) one of Ted's oldest and dearest friends delivered his eulogy. (If you didn't see his eulogy, you should check it out on the web. It is hilarious.) I knew John Culver as a teenager living in Iowa. I first met him along with Bobby Kennedy in 1966 at a political rally. ( I still have both of their autographs from that rally in Dubuque, Iowa.) I was lucky to have met them again several times subsequently because of a friendship I had with a girl who came from Dubuque. Her mother had once dated Bobby and their families had remained close thereafter. (That girl went on to become well known as Captain Janeway, of Star Trek fame.) One time I had a surreal encounter with Bobby Kennedy while walking to grade school. A limo pulled up, the window went down, and Senator Robert Kennedy leaned out and asked me if I knew where the Country Club was? This was in a time without GPS. Later on in 1971, while visiting Washington D.C. then congressman Culver welcomed me into his office and treated me with great generosity and warmth. He even pretended to remember our previous encounters. These memories were refreshed as I watched John Culver talk about his friend Ted last Friday night.
The following year, 1972, Sargent Shriver came to town on a campaign swing as a candidate for Vice President. My High School newspaper sent me to cover it. He surprisingly took the time to speak with me for a few minutes. I still have the article I wrote about it. Once again I was struck by how gracious some important people were. I later learned, as an adult, how rare a trait this so often is with the famous. Some are just too fabulous for the "little people".
There have been other tenuous threads linking my life with that of the Kennedys. For instance, my neighbor and friend whom I consider an invaluable source of advice and wisdom, was the best friend of Orville Freeman. They were each other's best men at their respective weddings. Orville Freeman placed Jack Kennedy's name in nomination for President.
You may fairly wonder what's the point of this rambling narrative? Some people talk about the Six Degrees of Separation, but it seems more useful to think about how truly interwoven are lives really are. I'm a nobody who grew up in a small Iowa town. What connection could I claim to so great an American family? More than you would think, but, not withstanding the accidents of chance or fate I have experienced personally, the Kennedys are connected to us all of us by much more substantial ties than the kind I have recounted here. Watching the Funeral services of Senator Kennedy undoubtedly reminded tens of thousands of Americans of their personal ties and connections to this famous family. The cords which bind all of us to the Kennedy clan can be found in their contributions to society,concrete and real in our everyday existences. Consider Eunice Kennedy Shriver's work with the Special Olympics, or Senator Edward Kennedy's legislative legacy. Whom did they help? They remained not only accessible to us, but also concerned about us; the common people, not just to the rich and powerful elites of society from whom and where they came. Their deeds matched-up easily with their political ideologies. There was no need for an elaborate, tortured, construct of "Tough Love" or "Thousand Points of Light", or "Compassionate Conservatives", needing explanations and counter-intuitive mental gymnastics to justify the notion that doing less is really doing more. (Contrast this with the other dynastic, political family of our time) While those on the right were concocting these facile arguments justifying greed and indifference, these liberals from Massachusetts, sleeves rolled up, were doing more than paying lip service to the need all about us. Whether you agree with their politics or not, no one can deny that the Kennedy family has championed the least among us and fought courageously for them, often at a terrible price. None, more so than Senator Edward Moore Kennedy. He surely had feet of clay, but, that just as surely, that enabled him to exhibit more compassion, understanding, and courage than those who sought to so often marginalize him. His life was a testament to perseverance, service to higher ideals and ultimate redemption. He was.... the People's Senator. I wonder who can fill his shoes and leave such indelible imprints on our paths towards a better world?

DRichards (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#30

Key Democrat Senator objects to CIA torture probe

http://rawstory.com/08/news/2009/08/30/key-democrat-senator-objects-to-c...

DRichards (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#31

Kennedys were public servants, not America's royal family

http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/editorials/stories/2009/08/28/harr2...

The hole idea of dynasties in a "democracy" concern me. I felt
that way about the Bush family, the Clintons, and I feel that way
about the Kennedys. Now I hear that Ted Kennedy's wife would make a
great replacement. Why wouldn't someone else make an even greater
replacement?

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#32

AND don't forget OBAMA™

Quark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#33

DDay,

I was fascinated with your account of the Kennedys' influence in your life (and all our lives.)

My rabid Republican mother and a number of generations of her predecessors were from Dubuque. As you know, it is a beautiful city with an ugly history, with my ancestors on some of the "dark side" of it.

I thought, with all of Ted Kennedy's speeches and comments replayed last week, how STRANGE it would seem to hear a politician speak in such an impassioned way in behalf of average Americans, and human beings in general. That's why I thought so much of Paul Wellstone --- his heart was always in his words.

DRichards (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#34

"The best-informed market participants are sending a clear signal that the
party on Wall Street is going to end soon," said Charles Biderman, CEO of
TrimTabs.

http://news.prnewswire.com/DisplayReleaseContent.aspx?ACCT=104&STORY=/ww...

DDay (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#35

DRichards, I share your concerns about dynasties in a democracy. One notes that the word ends in 'nasty". Thats why I never really considered myself a worshiper of the Kennedy clan, in spite of evidence I've recounted here. Until last weekend.... I realized that the story of Ted was worthy of worship in a way. Not only for what he did but what he overcame. He may not have deserved the seat in the first place but he became worthy of it over time. America is better for it. His story and that of his family in total is a tragic one and a triumphant one in the end. Thanks to Ted & Eunice. It's story offers an amazing counterpoint to that of the Bush family on so many levels.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#36

Harry Reid is a simp and whore.

Quark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#37

Thom,

My husband and I were discussing the spread of corporations around the globe. I was trying to think of an image that would help me understand it better.

Have they merged to form a "slime" that can only be attacked around the edges by the world's "little people" and thus undefeatable? Or could they be like the overwhelming alien forces in "War of the Worlds" who are overcome by weakeness from within? Or are they be like polio, which was a worldwide threat at one time? Then we innoculated the world against it and it virtually disappeared.

I hear you claiming that they are "polio." I hope you are right. It is good to hear James Hoffa and unions pushing back.

('Hope my metaphors aren't too confusing.)

DDay (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#38

Quark-
I'm gratified that you were fascinated by my story. I didn't mention that I came from a long line of Republicans. It took the Christmas bombings of hospitals in Hanoi, ("71") to make me jump ship. We share another bond...It was Paul Wellstone's death that got me active again. I hadn't been to a political rally since 1966. I've been to scores of them since Paul's death. I thought of him when I asked who could fill Ted's shoes. I'm not certain which of the dark stories to which you allude in Dubuques' past...there are so many! Give me a clue, I'm curious!

Quark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#39

There were anti-union, anti-Catholic, pro-Klan sympathies in my ancestors' political philosophies. They were entrepreneurs and small businesspeople who saw their eventual failures in those terms (at least my grandmother and a few others did.) It was not that they actively participated in such movements, but they were influenced in their political ideology by them (and Dubuque was a hotbed of all this.)

B Roll (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#40

Mark

You mention Jimmy Carter. FYI, Jimmy Carter, Desmond Tutu and several other prominent colleagues were in the West Bank town of Bil’in calling for Israel to stop building and expand its West Bank settlements and encouraging the residents to keep up their peaceful struggle. What anti-Semitic cowards they are.

FYI, Iran offered everything you ask for in 2003. Thom has discussed the Iranian peace offer with former congressman Bob Ney. Ney claims and Thom seems to agree Ney’s involvement in transmitting that offer is part of the reason that Ney was targeted in a corruption investigation. Ney admits he was involved in corruption. The Iranian offer was sent to him because Ney speaks Farsi and had taught English in Iran. He has other relations with Iran and has done business in the Middle East. The United States and Israel never responded to the Iranian offer.

FYI, the Arab League has made a similar peace offer to Israel several times and for years. There was no official Israeli response to any of the Arab League’s offers, not even to use it as a starting point for negotiations. Some Israeli officials showed interest and some, including Netanyahu rejected it. The Palestinian Authority supports the plan and Hamas seems to be split over it. Unfortunately, the Palestinians have no partner to negotiate with.

In the black and white world of your mind, you seem to think that anyone who speaks up for justice for Palestinian must be anti-Israeli. You assume that they ask nothing of the Palestinians whether in the Palestinian authority or Hamas. Then from your misinformed point of view, you criticize them for doing what you assume they don’t. Do you really think that Jimmy Carter doesn’t call on the Palestinians to recognize Israel’s right to exist? This is similar to your recent diatribe against the woman who called the police in the Henry Louis Gates arrest, when you repeatedly insulted her based on the erroneous early report that she was a neighbor of Gates. She wasn’t; she worked in the neighborhood and was on her way to lunch.

Then based on your lack of information, you call the people I listed hypocrites, cowards and anti-Semites. Well, we already know that it’s a tactic of fanatic supporters of Israel to call critics of that countries policies anti-Semites.

And it seems that you aren’t familiar with many of the great progressives I listed, so you don’t know who you’re insulting. I named sixteen people in my list. Six of the sixteen are Jewish with legendary progressive credentials. All of the people on the list are extremely consistent in their advocacy for justice.

Are you really calling Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu cowards? Are you calling Chris Hedges a former war correspondent who reported from war zones for years a coward? How about Ron Kovic who’s was critically wounded in Vietnam? How about Cynthia McKinney who watched her father face-down KKK terrorists as a child? McKinney tried to take humanitarian supplies to Gaza early this year and the boat she was on was rammed by the Israeli navy. She went back again about a month ago. This time she and the others on the boat were detained and held in an Israeli jail for a week. The day after she got home, she got a phone call asking her to join the Viva Palestina convoy trying to bring vehicles and supplies to Gaza through Egypt and she went the next day. Is Cindy Sheehan a coward? Medea Benjamin is a coward? Do you know what she does with Code Pink? Do you have any idea how many times she’s been arrested for demonstrating for peace?

You obviously don’t know of the lives of Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn and Harold Pinter. They’re life long progressive activists which doesn’t make life easier for them.

And you obviously don’t know how Amy Goodman risked her life to sneak back into East Timor in the early 1990s to cover the Indonesian’s army’s attacks on the people of that island. You obviously don’t know how she and her colleague Alan Nairn tried to stop a massacre by stepping between an oncoming column of Indonesian soldiers armed with M-16 and a crowd of mourners at a funeral and how she and Nairn were beaten by the those soldiers. This was a war zone, she had already been deported and snuck back in, and she was well aware of the fact that Indonesian troops had murdered several Australian based journalists before. That’s some cowardice.

Well, there’s neither time nor space to go over everything you don’t know. You’ve got your story and you’re sticking to it. It is interesting to see your confidence that you know more about the situation than some of the greatest progressive minds we have.

B Roll (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#41

Thom,

If you have time, you might enjoy listening to your friend and colleague Lila Garrett's program today at http://archive.kpfk.org/parchive/ She reminisces about her long friendship with Ted Kennedy. She speaks about him herself, plays an interview she did with him and talks about him with her grandson who she took to meet him when he was around10 years old.

If you have the time, I think you'll enjoy it. Just look for Connect the Dots - Lila Garrett It's the first instance of it you'll find on the archive page. The show is about an hour but this segment is the first half of the show.

Mike (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#42

@Richard L. Adlof

The right to remain free of course have been bought and paid for with blood and money. That's NOT what was I was talking about. It seems as though you are the one resorting to "jingoism"... That's just code for since I don't really have an argument I'm going to resort to saying if you don't agree with me your an idiot. You do, in fact, know exactly the rights I'm talking about. I don't have to any entity for the right to go to whatever church I choose, I don't have to pay any specific entity to vote, I don't have to pay for the right to pursue my own self interests, I don't have to pay for the right to political speech... But the left advocates that I SHOULD PAY for the "RIGHT OF HEALTHCARE"... If I have to pay for it out of my pocket, it is a "PRIVILEGE", just like obtaining my driver license...

Gerald Socha (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#43

Thom has taught me so much in the passed two years. It is not easy to teach and old dog new tricks (70 years old). Thom speaks of his optimism and I am glad that he is an optimistic person. I do not like the word pessimism and I will call myself a realist. There are two articles that tell it all about the American psyche.

Stephan Lendman - "A Culture of Violence"

and

Ray McGovern - "Christians largely mum on torture"

Christans are silent on many important issues!!!

Gerald Socha (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#44

Please excuse the spelling errors! It's nearly 1:00 AM and I am drained.

Passed should be past and Christans should be Christians.

vcdaniels (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#45

What I hear from the opposition to health care reform is the equation of Capitalism with virtue or morality. Keep in mind that Capitalism is merely an economic system of accumulating wealth. It's driving principle is greed, hence the saying in the '80's "greed is good". So to oppose the morality inherent in health care reform because it's "Marxist" or "anti-capitalist" is to equate greed with morality. This is not the teaching of Christ, but of Mammon. Matthew 6:24.

Blake (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#46

Thom,
Why are you still on the fence about the manditory flue vaccines? Us progressives need to be leading the charge against it!! Its not safe. They are not fully tested. The The dangers are proven, and the benefit is not. Dr. Gary Null is a leading progressive, and has done more research than probably anyone...Please look into it a little more..I suggest garynull.com Thank you

Blake (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#47

The caller at 11:45 was right....Squaline, as you know is in it, also Mercury..and is linked to Gulf War Syndrome..If someone wants that junk in them, we have no right to say they can not. But we sure as hell have the right to not have if forced on us..By the way, Im pretty sure that FEMA concentration camp thing is not a joke either. Can you inagine how happy the drug manufacturers would be if it was manditory?..And as you pointed out..No liability to them..Lets get on the correct side of this one right away. Thank you

Bipasha (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#48

Send flowers to Mumbai for same day delivery or delivery on your desired date. One can also send gifts, cakes for delivery in Mumbai. We are local florists and gift shop at Mumbai to send flowers, gifts, cakes to Mumbai and all over Maharashtra.

Neil Clark (not verified) 11 years 3 weeks ago
#49

Unfortunately, Mr. Sanders' data (that health insurance premiums will double in the next 8 years if we do nothing) is already outdated...

Our small business was forced to find a different carrier in late-2008, when Blue Cross announced they expected to increase our premiums by 30%; the "cheap" coverage we ended up from Blue Shield was `only' 12% higher than we were already paying - but we only achieved that `minimal increase' by taking on $4,800.00 deductibles for EVER PERSON on the plan. This plan is costing us $300 per-person today.

Then yesterday, I was advised that Blue Shield intends to raise the cost of this policy by 19% starting in November....money that could otherwise go to hiring new workers, or giving long-overdue raises to current workers, or buying new equipment...

Our small business is desperate for "The Public Option"; I would be delighted to pay even 80% of our current health-insurance premiums to buy into the Medicare program.

Trump has told us how he and the Republicans plan to steal this election: can we stop him and save our republic?

Thom plus logo Donald Trump became president by exploiting a loophole called the Electoral College. The majority of Americans did not want him or vote for him as president, but he's there anyway.

Now he's planning on using a different loophole, the 12th Amendment, to hang onto power.
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to understand how to respond when they’re talking about public issues with coworkers, neighbors, and friends. This book explores some of the key perspectives behind his approach, teaching us not just how to find the facts, but to talk about what they mean in a way that people will hear."