Daily Topics Friday January 15th 2010

banking imagesQuote:  If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one. -- Mother Teresa

"Anything Goes Friday"

Hour One - "Brunch With Bernie" Sen. Bernie Sanders  www.sanders.senate.gov

Hour Two - Credit union or bank? Mark Wolff, Senior Vice President of Communications for Credit Union National Association www.cuna.org Credit union or bank?

Hour Three - Army prosecutes single mom for refusing to deploy and put her son in foster care Rai Sue Sussman, Attorney for Army Specialist Alexis Hutchinson


Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

The Rehabilitation Of Joseph McCarthy? Texas Textbooks Process Grinds On


Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

I'm addicted to money too Senator Sanders... but I can't seem to find a good supplier :-(

KMH (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Senator Bernie Brunch!

KMH (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

...unless...you meant Colonel Sanders and some KFC

KMH (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

...if you are a Cat....KFM....

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Ralph's question is a good one (To paraphrase):

Is Ben Bernanke just another Bernie Madoff, running a Ponzi scheme on the American dollar?

Jeanie (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Do people ever talk about the possibility that EVEN ONE Republican may decide to vote for health care reform? I don't understand why none of them will, unless it's because the GOP threatens them. There are Republicans who are decent. So where are they? And when the media talks about Democrats making deals to get votes for this bill, do they ever consider that if there were some Republicans who would vote for health care, then the conservative Dems wouldn't have to be given hundreds of millions of dollars? Or the deals (threats) that the GOP makes to their people to get them to NOT vote for this bill? Shouldn't that be relevant?

Repulikkan (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago


How do Americans go about kicking the corporate owned legislators out of congress? How do we call attention to the fact that too many legislators make decision based on the wishes of their corporate handlers?

Maybe I'm delusional but it seems to me to be the core problem here in America.



Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

In answer to the money that each politician has to raise to be elected... Campaign Finance Reform and Instant Runoff Voting.

Couldn't hurt to get rid of paperless voting machines either.

Give the people their voice!

harry ashburn (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@Rob, it's been said on this show a thousand times: The one thing we can do to assuage the most problems is public campaign financing.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Obama for President 2008

Brilliant marketing campaign for a crappy third rate product.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Bernie is the eternal optimist . . . Obama is not a Progressive and has never been a Progressive and bless his little corporate sponsored heart will go down in flames before he will ever pretend to consider considering adopting a Progressive agenda.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Awww the Nuclear industry won't move forward if we don't guarantee them 100% financial backing.

Sounds like a self solved problem to me. Bye-bye radioactive waste production.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

WTF?!?!?!? $250 check for Seniors? $250.00 won't cover the co-pay on some name brand meds.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@Richard, I can't really disagree with your Obama point of view, but the only other feasible choices for 2008 were Clinton and McCain.

Sure Obama and Clinton are both wolves in sheeps clothing, but at least they know they have to dress the part. I'm hoping that it will encourage real progressives to continue to vote for progressive candidates.

I'm glad you see them for what they are, don't get discouraged by apologists that look through rose colored glasses. Keep holding the fire to their feet.

AVATAR (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago


Firedoglake sent me this last evening. They surveyed their members last evening. A number of the questions were if we thought there should be consequences as primary challenges for Democrats who did not vote how us progressives wanted them to vote.

I clicked on the survey link today and it does not take me to the actual survey I filled out last eve. I do not know how Survey Monkey works. Perhaps there was some time limit. But here is the actual letter and link they sent out last evening:

Hi Karen,

We're coming down to the wire on the health care reform bill, and there's still a lot of unsolved issues: a public option, taxes on health care plans, and penalties for not buying private insurance.
Where do you stand on a final bill?

Please take our health care survey:

In order to best fight for real reform, we need to know what you think. The survey will take you 5 minutes or less.

Thanks so much for letting us know what you think about the health care bill, and for all you do.

Michael Whitney

Jeanie (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Instead of $250/senior, how about negotiating drug prices down, like we do for Medicaid and the VA? Or allowing them to be re-imported from Canada. Or for that matter, just selling them for the price the Canadians negotiate for them (I never understood why we need to re-import something we make. Just don't import it in the first place).

But the drug companies were promised no negotiation and no reimportation, right?

AVATAR (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

While I was over at Firedog Lake, I found this gem. Supposedly an 'intelligent' progressive who will not vote for Martha Coakley. Letters like this are the exact reasons why we keep losing. This person's letter is a self fish childish unintelligent one that documents why we will just not be able to pass legislation to favor our causes: Ironically, the person calls themselves 'real world'

I am a life long PROGRESSIVE Democrat. However, it is becoming clear that the Democrats now in the Senate do not represent progressive views but instead the interests of corporations and CEO’s who are continuing to ruin the country.

Regressive taxation justified by paid for research, transfers of wealth to banks and insurance companies with no REAL accountability. Sacrificing woman’s and gay’s rights for no good reasons. This is what the democratic party has become.

Stand up for REAL CHANGE and you will win me back.

Stand up for single payer health care.
Stand up for real banking reform including ending tolerance "too big to fail" corporations.
Stand up for foreign policy that does not pander to the military to international corporate interests and the defense industry.
Stand up for a carbon tax that will end our dependence on fossil fuels and lead us through the 21’st century.

Stand up for Democratic principles and I will support Democrats again. Until then, you will loose my support even in a close race as Martha Coakley now faces. Is the republican candidate worse. Yes. But, I can no longer support the lesser of the evils. When will the Democrats again represent a good choice and not just the less bad one?

Then you will have my support.


Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@Jeanie, how about we end the war on drugs and invest the money we're wasting on that fiasco on providing medication to all that need it.

Jeanie (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

The war on drugs is silly, wasteful (money-wise and human-wise), and only is useful to give politicians kudos for being "tough". It really impresses me to lock up pot smokers! Oh, wait, no it doesn't.

I agree with you.

Jeanie (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago


But you can see that person's point. They take our votes for granted, it seems. But not voting in effect gives the Republicans an extra vote, which is far worse. Instead of not voting, I'd tell that person to directly email or mail or call whichever Dem they are irritated with and tell them why and tell them they won't be voting for them (but secretly still do). Politicians need to know there could be repercussions for their actions.

But doing what that person suggests is kind of like quitting a job in frustration before you have another one. It doesn't make sense.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@AVATAR... if the current Democratic party really believed you had somewhere to go, perhaps they would stand up for such things.

But they don't, so they won't.

As Thom says, take the infiltrate and takeover the local Democratic party meetings. Kinda like Blitzkrieg tactics, schwerpunkt und aufrollen (thrust and rollout).

Repulikkan (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago


I only just discovered this show today. Clearly, REAL campaign finance reform is a key. But how do you get REAL campaign finance reform with so many agents of compromise in the house and senate?

More importantly, how do we make this a priority with voters? How do we get "unbeholden" legislators to voice this issue and make it a topic in the mainstream media?

Personally, I would love it if President Obama would scrap efforts at a healthcare bill and tell America that real healthcare reform is impossible with certain republicans and conservative democrats in the legislature. Dems could focus efforts on gaining a compromise-proof majority in the senate in 2010. Focus all attention on the obstructionists! Make a list of legistators who stand in the way of what Americans want and publish that list. Pretty much blackmail the bad seeds, stand for the people or get a job with your corporate handler.

AVATAR (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

OKAY- lets do something about these book standards. Just contacted my Assembly member Dave Jones office. We love Dave. His staff took my concerns down and said she would look into the matter. I told her I was going to note this on the blog and follow up with her. I will send your link to her Richard.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

I have a Credit Union account. If I want cash, I generally will just ask for change back at pretty much any supermarket, drug store etc... which really solves the standard requirement of taking out multiples of 20's if you only want $10 or $15, or $30 so on and so forth. If a need a somewhat large amount of cash (more than I can get out at such stores) free of charge ATM's aren't really all that far to find (generally the same places I can go to deposit money).

Any way Credit Unions are wonderful, if you can join one, I'd highly recommend it.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@ Repulikkan: Grass-roots campaign finance reform . . . This has gotta be a bottom up, local driven thing. Government paid campaigns removes corporate-paid campaigns for corporate welfare . . .

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

THOM: HEY! Is not today the 98th anniversary of Theodore Roosevelt quitting the Republican Party in disgust?

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Sorry Repulikkan . . . The Teddy R thingy was not aimed at you . . . Your moniker fired up loose brain cells . . . AND I could be wrong . . .

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@Repulikkan: Well first I suggest you keep listening to Thom's show, he definitely has some great insights. Second (and you will hear this from Thom). Go to your local Democratic or Green Party meetings (or Republican if you're so inclined) and take it over. Bring up this subject and any other subject you feel is important and push for that branch to put it forward to their/your representatives.

All politics are local.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

I wonder if Obama will finally start acting more progressive if he loses the Massachusetts Senate Seat, or will he just be all that more willing to rollover?

Hope I don't get to find out.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

FDR once said that he saved capitalism from itself.

Looks like he might have only put off the inevitable.

The cons seem determined to take every greedy advantage they can push through congress, so how long can a unregulated capitalist system survive before it eats itself.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Two armies fighting against each other is one great army committing suicide.

Gerald Socha (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

I have shared with you the name of Michael Hovey who has a good knowledge and understanding of the Just War Theory. I am not an expert in this area. I have taken notes on a talk that was given on Proportionality. I will share my notes with you.

Moral decisions in and of themselves cannot be considered immoral unless you know proportionality. There are three actions to consider in proportionality, such as intentions, circumstances, and consequences. I cannot judge Bush and Obama but I have perceptual opinions.

Here are my perceptual opinions regarding Bush’s attack and Obama’s policies and practices upon Iraq.

Intention – Bush wanted to make himself look like a big man to his father and to himself. Oil may have also been an intention as well as permanent military bases. Obama’s continuous policies and practices of the Bush administration reveal more clearly that oil is a big factor in our attack of Iraq.

Circumstances – Bush lied to Americans that Iraq was an imminent threat to America’s safety and security. Obama offers more elegance in his lying to the American people. If we do not go into Iraq, they will come here and we will no longer be safe and secure. Do we feel safer and more secure now? The American government controls Americans through fear. Our government will always find a scapegoat to blame and in turn to control our people more and more.

Consequences – Bush’s decisions laid the groundwork for war crimes, mass murders, crimes against humanity, torture, and rape of a foreign land. Americans have their freedoms and rights taken from them through the Patriot Acts. Obama has also embraced the Patriot Acts and the war in Iraq. Both Bush and Obama are war criminals.

America’s economy is such that the middle class is being dissolved. Contracts are given to boyfriends and Americans do not know where the money is going.

Bush’s attack upon Iraq raises proportionality to a level that his decision to attack Iraq is an immoral act. Obama continues a disproportional attack upon Middle Eastern countries, such as Pakistan and Yemen. Grave eternal consequences are upon these persons and their souls and also with the people and their souls who have agreed with these brutal and inhumane actions upon the Middle Eastern people.

Jeanie (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Since we pay Blackwater and other mercenary companies an ungodly amount of money, as well as the huge $$ we paid Afghans to turn in Al Queda people (i.e. men they had personal beefs with), why couldn't we pay for fulltime childcare for people in this woman's situation?

Gerald Socha (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

I have some money in a credir union in order to keep my account active.

I cannot understand why the Federal Reserve will not accept an audit of their practices.

I favor the rollback of tax exemptions for religions.

ctk (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

you know with the democrats possibly losing one seat in massachusetts, i hope that this action would spur on the democratic party to finally once and for all be done with that troublesome priest, errr rabbi. what's the difference between 59 seats and 58 seats when 3 of your so-called members won't follow what the party and the president want anyway?

politicos may say that with the increasingly emboldened republicans and their filibuster threats the democrats need every single vote they can get. but when the membership in their own party would side with the republicans just because their corporate masters said so, you don't have a supermajority and you never really had one anyway.

if in this next election some democrats get taken out because they have been acting more like republican-lite rather than democrats, i will shed no tears for them. ideally a republican would take out a corporatist democrat while a democrat takes out a republican for no net change in seats. but what a democrat being taken out will do is provide another opportunity in the next election cycle to vote in more democrats from the democratic wing of the democratic party without the near impossible problem of primarying an incumbent.

KMH (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

I do not want to sound unsupportive, but a local talk show host here entertained an entire hour on how women get pregnant on purpose as a way to get out of their stop loss agreement.

I had thought obama stopped this early in his term. However, on facebook, a news story was going around about a soldier sent to jail in the south for writing a song about how the Army was not complying with the order to stop - stop loss - it was incredible,

Perhaps the only ones to stop the military industrial complex, will be the soldiers themselves.

harry ashburn (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

re: young mother court-martial: I'm really disappointed that Thom didn't ask the guest: "After joining the Army, knowing she would be sent overseas, why the hell did she have a baby?". As far as I'm concerned, that was really stupid.

harry ashburn (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

re: young mother...Oh, the kid is 10 years old? I thought the kid was an infant. sorry.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@Jeanie: I don't even think it should be a question of why can't we pay for full time child care for her son, the real question is why does one single parent army cook have to go off to a theater of war when there obviously positions here at home for her to fill?

Sounds to me that some authoritarian jerk who has the responsibility to make the decision has made it badly and is to obstinate to admit their personal mistake and has therefore dug in their heels rather than acquiesce.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Even London’s financial elite get it . . . Link to article quoted by THOM:


Jeanie (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago


Isn't the kid 10 MONTHS old? He is referred to as an "infant". Also, she understood she would be away from her child. She was ok with this. She had a plan, but something went awry and her mother could not take care of her child (I think I read that she had others to care for unexpectedly or something, although I think her mother probably could have also taken care of this one too--I mean, does she want her daughter to go to jail?).

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

If religion is the opiate of the masses, is television Soma?

(Huxley's designer drug from Brave New World, not the actual drug in existence today)

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Every DEM seat lost causes the DLC (Democrats Loving Corporations) to point and say “We lost to a Republican . . . SO we must tack to the Reich” . . .

Jeanie (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Nels, you are right. There was really no reason why something couldn't have been worked out. They could have given her 6 months or a year to take care of this.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Geez Thom why is this the first time I've heard you talk about Hamilton's plan. I'd think you would have been talking about it at least once every week. In fact I'd love for you to bring it up to the many right wing economist you have on and see what they have to say about it.

Nels (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

Thom, perhaps it would be worthwhile for you to take one hour a week and hold an on air civics class. I know I'd listen to it!

KMH (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago


NO. This person is delutional. She thinks that by withholding a vote for a Democrat that somehow the Democrats will cater to her as if it were a hotel chain or a fancy restarant. Aint no free lunch.

Think in solid solution, That is this:

You look at the clock. At midnight or noon, consider this total balance. At 3 o'clock, consider this too far to the right - fascism.

At 9 o'clock, this is too far left, this is communism.

Our job is to push the hands on the clock to maybe 11 o'clock. Get it?

KMH (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@Nels- there you go.

harry ashburn (not verified) 11 years 35 weeks ago

@Jeanie, yeah, I thought the kid was 10 weeks old, then I heard Thom say he was 10 years old; but I think Thom misspoke. I guess I'm too hard on people who enlist, then are shocked at the consequences. I just need to remember most enlist out of economic necessity.

After all, today's high school graduate has 2 choices; the army or Wal-Mart. Do you want to work in the most dangerous, grimy conditions? Do you want to face death and dismemberment every day? Do you want to have to stand at attention at 5:00 in the morning while a red-faced CO screams in your face?....or do you want to join the army?

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