Daily Topics - Wednesday January 20th 2010

angry imagesQuote:  "The people don't want a phony Democrat. If it's a choice between a genuine Republican, and a Republican in Democratic clothing, the people will choose the genuine article, every time; that is, they will take a Republican before they will a phony Democrat, and I don't want any phony Democratic candidates in this campaign." -- President Harry Truman - May 17, 1952

Hour One - Is it all about the Republicans vs. the phony Democrats?

Hour Two - Economist Dean Baker www.cepr.net  False Profits: Recovering from the Bubble Economy

Hour Three - Dan Gainor www.businessandmedia.org  Is it all about the Republicans vs. the phony Democrats?


Nels (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

@Avatar, thanks for the link. I'd like to watch this, but unfortunately I'll be in class at that time. Trying to improve my lot in life, since my chosen profession of draftsman has sort of petered out here in a country that has all but abandoned supporting manufacturing.

Stan (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

No need to blow up the filibuster right now. Just extend today's Medicare rights to all ages through Budget Reconciliation. Do the same for the tax on the Uber Rich. Dare Obama to veto them.

Of course Super Hack Rahm Immanuel won't let the whole thing happen. He is just as tied to the military industrial leaches as anyone. Only the next BIG dip in the economy will be enough to convince Democratic Hacks that they NEED the Progressives.

We don't have much of an option except to keep on going at the local level. I doubt if Coakley has had much grass roots support. The Kerry Campaign showed how little Massachusetts Democratic functionaries know how to deal with the grass roots. Obama apparently had no interest in making his election apparatus in Massachusetts or anywhere else anything but ephemeral.

What a waste!

Meanwhile we have no choice but to keep operating at the local level.. This is definitely not a time to stop. Time to take a cringing cynic to lunch.

Gerald Socha (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Rabbi Michael Lerner wrote in the Washington Post.

The defeat of the Democrats choice to succeed Ted Kennedy in the U.S. Senate is being treated as though there is a decided shift of mass opinion to the Right in the U.S. But it is the Obama Administration, not the people who supported him in 2008, which moved to the Right--in the name of being pragmatists or realists-- in the process emptying their own agenda in regard to health care, environment, human rights, social and economic justice, and global peace of the critical elements that made those programs sound hopeful, and leaving many of their supporters feeling confused, disillusioned, and unable to rally around the politics that seemed so very far from "the change you can believe in" that we had been promised.

Thousands of us saw this coming, and tried to warn Obama, but he wouldn't listen.

On April 29, 2009, Tikkun and our education arm the Network of Spiritual Progressives bought the entire back page of a special supplement published in the Washington Post on the occasion of the 100th day of Obama's presidency. We warned him that his presidency was in grave danger. Our point was simple and direct: "Your success depends on helping people believe that they can count on each other, that they are not alone in a ruthless world in which people are out for themselves, and there is a possibility of building a society based on kindness, generosity, and caring for each other. Unless your programs actually allow people to feel in their own lives that they are part of build a new society based on love and generosity of spirit, they will soon fall back into the older paranoid view-that we are all competing with each other and have to look our first for number one. And that will likely them right back into the hands of the most conservative forces in this society. It's that simple, President Obama: if your policies do not give people a personal experience of caring and generosity, people will quickly succumb to the fearmongers who compete in the media over who can make people most afraid, most cynical, and most angry. "

Our add went on to tell President Obama that his supporters were beginning to feel mobilized because they cannot explain to themselves and others:

*Why you are bailing out the bankers and the Wall Street crowd rather than prioritizing the needs of people who have lost their jobs and homes

*Why you are not backing single payer (Medicare for Everyone) health reform but are instead preserving the interests of the health care profiteers and insurance companies that make our health care system so costly

*Why you are escalating the war in Afghanistan and Pakistan, when you must know that these are no win situations, and when you have even agreed with Rabbi Michael Lerner that the best way to achieve "homeland security" is not by attempting to dominate others around the world in an insane "war on terrorism," but instead by a Strategy of Generosity manifested in the Network of Spiritual Progressives' proposal for a Global Marshal Plan introduced into the Congress by Congressman Keith Ellison

*Why you have failed to bring into your Administration more leaders of the peace, social justice, labor and environmental movements that gave you the critical support you needed to win the Democratic nomination for President.

Our conclusion: "If the people who made your presidency possible stop feeling excited about your present direction, the populist energies that oculd be mobilized for fundamental change will instead by mobilized by the Right for reactionary goals, and you may find yourself without the base of support you need even for your scaled down goals." And now our worst fears and prophetic predictions are coming true. [If you were one of the many members of the Network of Spiritual Progressives or subscribers to Tikkun who donated to make the ad we published possible, I want to thank you for your ability to see what was ahead--and your willingness to back your wisdom with the money we needed to publish that ad!]

But what could he have really done, many ask, given the way corporate interests seemed to have bought their way into power not only in the Republican party, but among Blue Dog Democrats in the House and Senate?

It's true that if Obama had fought for the kind of change he led his followers to believe would be possible, he might have lost. But winning legislative battles is not the highest goal, as FDR and Reagan, the two most influential 20th century presidents, learned. The most important thing a president can do is develop a worldview and convince the American public of that. Obama could have spoken the truth, told what he saw happening in Washington rather than trying to be a clever inside manipulator-a game that he was destined to lose. Any legislative victory won by compromising away the heart of what you are fighting for isn't worth much, and in any event, even good legislation can quickly be dismantled by the next president if you haven't won over the minds and hearts of the American people--and to do that you need to speak the truth and tell people what we are up against in the system of global capital and its ethos of materialism, selfisness, and looking-out-for-number-one, and what it would take to dismantle it and replace that system with a more humane and caring, environmentally sane and ethically and spiritually coherent society. And Obama could have constantly reminded his supporters that the 2008 election had shown that their yearning for a world of peace and justice, of love and caring and community and real solidarity and democracy, were not the private dreams of an isolated minority but the real needs of the American majority. By making us visible to each other, he would have empowered people to fight for programs that manifested their highest values (if and only if his programs did in fact manifest those values, which unfortunately they often did not).

Now it's up to us, the tens of millions of Americans who really showed in 2008 the powerful commitment we have to building a world of love, kindness, generosity, environmental sanity and caring for others. We have to reconstitute that movement without Obama's help, before the disillusionment with Obama's compromises leads to the resurgence of the Right's policies, the surge of a know-nothing Tea Party movement, and the retreat into despair and self-imposed powerlessness by all those who are questioning whether there's any real possibility of replacing corporate power, materialism and selfishness with a more ethically and spiritually grounded community of caring.

Please don't let your disappointment at Obama lead you or your friends into political passivity...because the alternative if you do that is Sarah Palin and The Tea Party extremists and the haters and fundamentalists, all of whom are now momentarily dressing themselves in the language of populism, but all of whom will actually only give even more power to the elites of wealth and power.

That's why it is so important for you to become part of our efforts to reconstitute the movement of hope--and we can do that with your help. We need your ideas and involvement--and so we've created two conferences, a one day event on the Monday of President's Day weekend, February 15, at the McLaren Hall on the campus of the University of San Francisco on Fulton St. near Clayton; and a longer event June 11-14 at the Church of the Reformation on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. The conferences are co-sponsored by The Nation Magazine, Yes Magazine, Democracy Now, Op-ed News, Peace Action, 350.org, the Buddhist Peace Fellowship, and speakers will include Chris Hedges, Bill McKibben, David Korten, Congressman Keith Ellison, Riane Eisler, Rev. Brian McLaren, Benedictine Sister Joan Chittister, Peter Gabel, Rev. James Winkler, Rev. Conrad Braaten, Robert Thurman, Rabbi Arthur Waskow, Rev. Gralan Hagler, Rabbi Arthur Waskow, Jonathan Granoff, Marianne Williamson, Paul Wapner, John Dear SJ, John Nichols, Svi Shapiro, Bob McChesney, Rabbi Michael Lerner, and many more.

Nels (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

I hate to say it, but do you ever get the feeling that the White House is relieved that there is no longer a 60 vote super majority. Now they can say they can't pass things because they "don't have the votes" with just a little more credulity.

DDay (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Thank you Gerald. I read with great interest your proffer of Rabbi Lerner's words. I guess not all of us are evil.

AVATAR (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

How about this for a message?

Transnational corporations > lobbyists> revolving door> government = fascism. GET IT?

The Future of Food
The Banks
The Energy Monopoly
The Health Care Monopoly
The Income Disparity

Zero G. (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

scoville rating:
5,000,000–5,300,000 Law Enforcement Grade pepper spray,[5]
FN 303 irritant ammunition

doctorlatte (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

It would have been nice if the exit polls yesterday asked voters if they felt anyone was phony.... o wait, there were no exit polls done yesterday.

joejl (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

A 60 vote majority is a smokescreen to rationalize poor policy by Obama who is just fundamentally continuing GBW with different phony rhetoric. Coakley actually won ALL HAND COUNTED DISTRICTS. See Brad's Blog and Black Box Voting to check out the details on how the machines always get a different result than the hand counted areas. Obama has lied consistently on healthcare. 2003 he is only for single payer (see You Tube). Then public option and now next to nothing and he IS SATISFIED. Progressives need to organize a national campaign NOW to target 2012. Spineless progressive Democrats need to STAND UP NOW AND DON'T GIVE IN TO THIS CORPORATIST IN THE WHITEHOUSE. Let the Democratic Party implode and build a real Progressive Party for 2012. TODAY'S PARTY HAS NO CHANCE TO GO ANYWHERE FOR THE PEOPLE. HOW MUCH EVIDENCE DO PROGRESSIVES NEED???? Think long term.

Nels (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Didn't Clinton repeatedly say "Its the economy stupid"?

Hasn't Obama ever heard that statement... I wonder?

Benedict@Large (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

In response to your query re: Pete Peterson and his attack on Social Security, I mentioned that he was the funding behind I.O.U.S.A., and that the movie was based on several major mistakes. They are:

1) IOUSA cites massive unfunded liabilites, but this is deceitful at best. What is not mentioned is that while these liabilities are CURRENTLY unfunded, funding mechanisms already exist for them. (Example: IOUSA fails to note FUTURE Social Security deductions from paychecks in its accounting.)

2) IOUSA makes no distinction between retirement security and healthcare security obligations. Obviously retirement funding is in FAR better shape than healthcare, but IOUSA misleads on this, lumping them both as one. (Peterson betrays his bias here; Social Security is his real target, but he obscurs this in IOUSA.)

3) In citing unfunded healthcare, IOUSA claims these will bankrupt the government. While this is potentially true, IOUSA fails to note that this is a problem accross all of American society. In other words, regardless of whether or not there are government obligations in healthcare, healthcare will bankrupt ALL of American society if it contines on its current trend line.

These taken together and applied to the theme of IOUSA, the REAL take-away from the movie becomes that healthcare inflation has been, is, and looks to be in the future UNSUSTAINABLE. (The current bill leaves this almost totally unaaddressed.) Peterson however simply wants to slash our last remaining fixed-benefit retirement security, and he has earmarked $1 billion of his own money to this end.

I hope this helps.

P,S Peterson also has several appearances on Larry King. You can watch him there.

AVATAR (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

@Nels - yes, and the President campaigned on bottom up and fair trade. He dropped the fair trade as he began to get media to take him seriously. He dropped the bottom up when he kept Larry Summers / Tim G Goldman Sachs in.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

I going home tonight and watching Rollerball to prepare for our future . . . The 1975 Norman Jewison/James Caan/John Houseman/Maud Adams version . . . Not the 2002 piece o’ shaving cream.

rewinn (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Following up on your 10:45 caller:


Any takers?

Zero G. (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Lord Goldsmith warned ministers that Iraq war would be illegal
Lord Goldsmith, then the attorney general, warned Cabinet ministers in 2002 that he did not believe attacking Iraq would be legal.
By James Kirkup, Political correspondent
Published: 11:33AM GMT 19 Jan 2010

Mr. Obama, where is our inquiry? Where is our accountibility? Whisky Tango Foxtrot Mr. Obama?

Nels (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

BTW, can anyone tell me why in the hell Obama has surrounded himself with Clintonites? Didn't he have a knock down drag out fight with the Clintons in the campain? I never understood his thinking in this respect. Seems like he swallowed the poisoned pill to me.

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

OFFICALLY: YESTERDAY, THERE WERE NO EXIT POLLS IN THE BROWN/COAKLEY ELECTION BECAUSE 20-22% OF MASSEHUSETTS VOTERS SAID IT WOULD ALLOW ACORN TO STEAL THE ELECTION!!!!! Mostly, I think this was to allow Diebold to steal the election BUT there was NO, NADA, NONE, ZIP check on the democratic system yesterday.

Yep, we are proud members/owners of a fourth rate banana republic.

doctorlatte (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

the current campaing finance system requires one be phony,,, how else could someone raise the massive amounts of money needed to even get a seat at an elections debate.

Nels (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

@Avatar, so I guess Obama has decided to mandate an end to poverty and homelessness too.

Campaign promises aren't worth the polluted air that they are spoken into.

DDay (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

@ Richard

Dan Gainor is up next! Your fave. I await with anticipation your channeling of your inner Yosemite Sam. You carn-sarned, dad blamed @!#* ....


Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Obama surrounded himself with who he is comfortable with . . . Chicago School Economist types.

Zero G. (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Americans voted for change, and only got "spare change."

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

I am sure that Dan Gainor is a beautiful human being with a soul filled with love and kindness for his fellow human beings and animals everywhere.

Zero G. (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

and I prefer "Spare Chaynge" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Upqs5J0qP90

Nels (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Hey Thom ask Gainer how he feels about Libraries. I'm betting he believes that we should give them over to private companies and pay to rent the books.

AVATAR (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

How's this for division - is it safe to say the Sky People are the Republicans and the Pandorans are the Democrats.....!

DDay (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

In my neck of the woods, Dan is what we call a "tool". In Yiddish, it would be "putz" or "Schmuck".

DRichards (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Re Is smaller government possible without giving up services?

I moved to Virginia 9 years ago. When I went to the courthouse to pay my taxes, I had to see three people. One to hand write the information, which I then handed to the second person to enter into the computer, and then to a third person who actually took my payment. It seems to me that we can indeed have smaller government without giving up necessary services.

Nels (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Lets see who did we get after Clinton and his new Democrats... was it another Democrat or was it just a Demon?

Richard L. Adlof (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

While is remains my firm and fervent belief that the point of view Mr. Gainor chooses to express here on Thom’s show tends to be heinous, venomous and so vile it sears and curtails other mortal souls in these ideas proximity . . . I recognize that he has the right to hold and express them. We can co-exist in the harmony of this universe.

I must confess that I, now, press the mute button for fifteen minutes for the sake of my blood pressure.

DRichards (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Re: Obama to move left in 2011
That sounds about right; campaign on the left & move center right to govern.
Works every time!

Zero G. (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Under the rubrick of "reinventing government" Clinton Gore cut 252,000 government positions:

"The Vice President presented the report to President Clinton on September 7, 1993. The President and Vice President made a tour of the country to promote the report. The President issued directives to implement a number of the recommendations, including cutting the work force by 252,000 positions, cutting internal regulations in half, and requiring agencies to set customer service standards." from: http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/npr/whoweare/history2.html

Frederick Smith (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

So let's finally abolish that outdated anachronism, the filibuster. If the Repubs could push through tons of toxic legislation for 12 years without a 60-vote Senate majority, then the Dems have no reason to fear a Senate without it. As Thom shows, the Constitution did not provide for a filibuster, so let's be done with it and get back to work.

Dan Kaufman (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

I was just listening on Green 960, and heard a guest talking about SSN as "unfair taxation" and not an "insurance payment". His reasoning was essentially that if we removed the cap (which would solve the problem), those now paying their fair share would never draw "one penny" from SSN.

First, your guest obviously does not know what the difference between insurance and retirement are. You pay your insurance premiums regardless of whether you ever make a claim. I do not get my home insurance premiums back if I never make a claim, but that is exactly what your guest seems to think.

Second, it is not "unfair taxation" because if, for some reason, those millionaires and billionaires become poor and destitute, they would receive SSN. It very much applies to them, as it does EVERYONE else.

I also wanted to address the healthcare debate. One of the biggest arguments I hear against universal healthcare or a public option is "How are we going to pay for it?". Well, one thing I never hear talked about is that we are paying for it right now, just instead of the much cheaper preventative care, we are paying for the much more expensive emergency care. The only two differences are
1. if we get some of the premiums through taxes, some of these people that are using the system would actually have paid into it AND
2. we could save the lives of people and pay less for it if we weren't treating severe diseases/conditions in the emergency room and prevented them instead.

Let me reiterate for the right wing talking machine...WE ARE PAYING FOR THE UNINSURED RIGHT NOW. If we tax EVERYONE for healthcare, we all get better healthcare for much cheaper. No one has the option not to pay into the system.

Zero G. (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

A small bit of good news:

A Small Victory for Shock Resistance http://www.naomiklein.org/main
By Naomi Klein - January 20th, 2010
In response to the wave of criticism, the IMF has just issued a statement saying that they will try to turn the $100-million loan to Haiti into a grant. This is unprecedented in my experience and shows that public pressure in moments of disaster can seriously subvert shock doctrine tactics. They are also now saying that they will not put conditions on the emergency loan—another popular victory, since this is not what they were saying last week. Of course people have to keep up the pressure to make sure Haiti's debts really are cancelled as the IMF is now predicting they will be. Something to hold them to!

rewinn (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

You could take Edgar Allen Poe's "The Bells" and replace the word "Bell" with "Job" and have very nearly the perfect speech:

Hear the export of the jobs-
Offshored jobs!
What a world of solemn thought their departure compels!
In the silence of the night,
How we shiver with affright
At the melancholy menace of their tone!
For every sound that floats
From the rust within our throats
Is a groan.
And the people- ah, the people-
We who gather by the steeple,
All Alone
And who, tolling, tolling, tolling,
In that muffled monotone,
... Offshored jobs, jobs, jobs:
To the tolling of the jobs,
Offshored jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs-
jobs, jobs, jobs-
To the moaning and the groaning of the offshored jobs."


Zero G. (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

I too, hope for change. I just don't have any expection that Mr. Obama has any intention of providing it.

Once more, Whisky Tango Foxtrot, Mr. Obama?

Megan M (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Great column in the Worcester, MA paper regarding the election: http://www.telegram.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100120/COLUMN44/120...

ctk (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

this race never should have been in doubt. the democrat should have won easily if she put some work in this race, and she didn't even do that. but what makes me even madder is that this race should never have been a factor in passing healthcare. this process should have gone through by reconciliation and if the bill got 61 or 60 votes that would have just been the cherry. i have absolutely no idea who put out the meme that the democrats had 60 seats and could therefore thwart republican filibusters because there are at least 4 DINOs in the senate now, and no lie-berman isn't included in that list. but because the obama administration craves bipartisanship over doing good government and harry reid is a feckless milquetoast kittykat jellyfish scared of his own shadow (and when i say kittykat, i don't mean kittykat), this bill that has wasted 7 or 8 MONTHS of time just to get the vote of every corporate democrat bought off by the healthcare industry or the vote of queen olympia I is going to fail. it is going to fail spectacularly. and what's worse off is that there are some good democrats in the house that are going to pay for the sins of the undemocratic senate and weak senate leader.

the people of nevada will be doing this country a great favor by sending someone to the senate not named harry reid.

Stan (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Prop 8 won (just barely) in California because the opposition ran a wimpy campaign, that, at the same time, had almost no contact with the grass roots.

Progressives can't put their Progressivism under a bushel basket.

Dave (S-wood) (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Responding to: Doctorlatte post at 9:07 AM today, regarding 49% suffering at the tyranny of the 51%....let me tell you a little story!

Here in MN, we have a Governor, Tim Pawlenty, (with presidential aspirations), who has NEVER been elected by a majority. He always plays to his middle class roots, Dad was a truck driver, bla, bla, bla.The state is headed for the ditch with T-PAW at the wheel! We always have an independent in the race, hence, a Gov.with minority support of the rich and greedy!

T-PAW signed "a pact with the Devil", (Grover [no new taxes] Norquist), in his plan to run for President! Note; Grover doesn't live in MN, he doesn't vote here, so as you can see, it's ideology over the people of MN. He hasn't raised STATE income taxes, but fees (taxes) have gone up, local gov. aid (LGA), has been cut, transferring costs to local gov. units without adequate resources, in many cases.

T-PAW, thinks he's King! Despises unions, teachers, the poor (30,K will loose GAMC [access to health care] March 1, 2010), and anyone without a "R" behind their name (with lots of money)! Our "King" is having to go to court over his misuse of the "Unallottment" law in MN....

So, BOO HOO to the 49% vs. 51%. What we need are Federally funded elections, and State funded elections! No other funding, at all! No corporate money, no private money, no PAC money. Then possibly, we would see better outcomes, i.e. government by and for the people.

It seems that it's time for reconciliation and the "nuclear option"!

Meremark (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

There continues to appear evidence in election documents -- CENSORED in MassMEDIA -- informing us that the Touch-the-TV voting tallies (in computer-program 'rigged' black boxes) are SUSPECT -- not proven accurate and true, not proven inaccurate and false. NOT PROVEN true OR false since there is NO PAPER TRAIL.

SHOW US the BALLOTS -- this time in Massachusetts.
The fraction of ballots which WERE paper ballots (in MA), and ARE tangible and ARE hand-counted, have a tally count showing Coakley WINS.

The computer-programmed votes from Touch-the-TV, without PAPER TRAIL, can ACTUALLY and IN REALITY be -- and IN FACT have been -- totally false and fraudulent fictional numbers.

Unless and until State elections can and do SHOW US the BALLOTS, well, without PROOF of which candidate got the majority of votes, then ALL the ANALYSIS about any supposed 'MEANING' or 'MESSAGE' or 'RESULTS' -- which political broadcast pundits (such as you, Thom) keep on blowing in the smokey airwaves -- is nothing more than hooey, imaginary, made-up propaganda.

So here is some facts BEING CENSORED from TV and radio 'reports' this morning after Massachusetts:

Credible and VERIFIABLE source
Bev Harris, BlackBoxVoting.ORG

This article is about our right to know .....

Back to Massachusetts, I think you have a right to know that Coakley won the hand counts there.

That's right.

According to preliminary media results by municipality, Democrat Martha Coakley won Massachusetts overall in its hand counted locations,* with 51.12% of the vote (32,247 hand counted votes) to Brown's 30,136, which garnered him 47.77% of hand counted votes. Margin: 3.35% lead for Coakley.

Massachusetts has 71 hand count locations, 91 ES&S locations, and 187 Diebold locations, with two I call the mystery municipalities (Northbridge and Milton) apparently using optical scanners, not sure what kind.


The greatest margin between the candidates was with ES&S machines -- 53.64% for Brown, 45.31% for Coakley, a margin for Brown of 8.33%. It looks like ES&S counted a total of 620,388 votes, with 332,812 going to Brown and 281,118 going to Coakley. Taken overall, the difference -- 8.33% Brown (ES&S) added to 3.35% Coakley (Hand Count) shows an 11.68% difference between the ES&S and the Hand Counts. Of course, as Mark Twain used to say, there are three kinds of lies: Lies, damned lies, and statistics. These statistics don't prove anything, and probably shouldn't be discussed without a grain of salt handy before examining more detailed demographics.

As a point of reference, however, in the Maine gay marriage issue recently there was no significant overall difference between machine count and hand count locations.


Diebold's results are 51.42% for Brown, with 791,272 Republican votes counted by Diebold, vs. 47.61% for Coakley, with 732,633 Democratic votes counted by Diebold, for a spread of 3.81% favoring Brown.


It's always interesting to watch hand counts beat machine count results to the newspaper.

In the Massachusetts special senate election, results from six of 71 hand count locations were reported about 2 1/2 hours after the polls closed, with the remaining 65 hand count locations in right away. The slower hand count results represent 8.45% of all hand count locations.

These latecoming hand-counted results favored Coakley very heavily (she got 55.68% of these, earning 4,610 votes to Brown's 42.9%, representing 3,552, a 12.78% margin) Whether the reports came to the media late or the media posted them late is unclear.


ES&S had 12 of its 91 locations reported at least 2 1/2 hours after polls closed, a total of ...

... continue reading full report at the link (above).

Broadcasters MUST SAY no one knows which candidate got the most votes BECAUSE there are NO BALLOTS, no paper trail, TO COUNT ON.

DDay (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

@ Dave (S-Wood)

Dead on. Come to see Thom Sat. night in Mpls. I'll buy you an adult beverage.

DDay (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Thanks! Megan M.
The column is great. Lots of truth and insight.

RON HARTMAN (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Date: 1/20/2010 1:01:34 PM
To: dccc@dccc.org
Subject: Re: The Dream Lives On

Want to eliminate much of the boondoggling waste in government?

We are no longer 13 little AUTONOMOUS English-based colonies, but ONE NATION, supposedly under God who is not exclusively either a Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindi, or Shinto God or of any other national entity.

Introduce a bill calling for a Constitutional Convention -

Items needing amending:

1/ Abolish US Senate by 2040.
2/ Abolish state electoral college system and all States' Rights and Right to Work laws by 2020.
3/ Abolish all state laws and courts and have UNIFORM FEDERAL LAWS IN ALL 50 STATES that are administered by the 50 elected Governors, by 2030.
4/ Institute term limits for Congressmen/women - lifetime limit of three eight years terms, regardless of whether or not terms are consecutive or are for the same Congressional district - subject to popular recall referendum every 2 years to get rid of real duds
5/ One Congressman/woman for every 100,000 registered voters with all Congressional districts reconfigured every 10 years based on latest census - and all Congressional districts must be configured in a simple square or rectangle - no more Gerrymandered districts like the 11th Cong. Dist. in Illinois
6/ Party affiliation shall have no bearing on the number of signatures needed to get on one unified primary ballot - candidates need to get 5,000 signatures (5% of registered voters ) between April 1 and June 30 of election year.
7/Only top four vote-getter candidates for Congress in primary on July 15 to be on Congressional ballot for election to be held on September 1st - only 48 days after primary, with early voting from Aug. 15 - 29.
8/ Have one set of standardized election machines with a paper-trail for auditing in all precincts in all states.
9/ Abolish state licensing of all vehicles and drivers - one set of licensing laws for the entire nation - and a nationwide license plate - available only to US citizens.
10/ Abolish all current Federal taxes,levies and tariffs and replace with a standardized 'GROSS RECEIPTS AND TRANSACTIONS TAX' of 1/2 of 1% of all receipts as they are deposited into all financial accounts of all persons and entities doing business in the USA - through the revised Federal Bank of America. I estimate this tax on payment transfers should generate some $4trillion of tax revenues annually!
11/ Repeal the Federal Reserve Act of 1913 and transfer ownership of the 12 Federal Reserve Banks from any ownership by commercial banks over to the Federal Bank of America, that is owned by the Federal government.
12/ Abolish all paper money and coinage by 2030 - all transactions must be done by draft, wire transfer, or electronically - and every citizen must have their own financial account when they are 18 or older, as also must every entity doing business in the USA - even foreign corporations - AND no funds may be repatriated by any foreign corporation outside of the USA until first deposited in a USA bank and the transaction tax of 1/2 of 1% is paid.
13/ Prohibit exporting of jobs to or importing of goods from any foreign nation or international corporation that does not permit full collective bargaining rights for its citizens and employees in all its overseas operations, with labor laws equal to our own that are rigorously enforced.

Ray Mathis (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

Sadly, Thom, Obama did exactly what you said he shouldn't do shortly after your show went off the air. We sent him to FIGHT corporations and the insurance, banking, pharmaceutical and fossil fuel industries, and he tried to COMPROMISE with. They don't compromise. They just cleverly give the impression that they're willing to. I've been saying for years, there's two main problems with this country. One, the amount of influence money buys at the federal level, and two, the massive corporate propaganda machine that's been assembled. We've seen perfect example of both in what's transpired over the past year. And I suspect it's only going to get worse.

Ray Mathis (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

I still like the idea of starting a grassroots group called Citizens Against Corporate America (CACA) for all the crap they've been pulling. Or, Fighting Unregulated Corporate Control of the United States. It could either be FUCCUS for what they've done to us, or leave the S off and it could be our response - FUCCU. BTW Thom, my password is the F bomb with a letter or number interjected after each letter of the word. Is that computer generated or someone having fun?

KevinII (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

On Tuesday's show Alex Epstein, once again in the true objectivist fashion, espouses the marvels of the "free" market where there are no rules, except for property rights of course. But hay, isn't the protection of property rights a restriction that denies me the right to steal Alex's stuff? What gives!

Gerald Socha (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

I have shared with you my belief that Obama will not seek re-election in 2012. Actually, the Democratic Party will approach Obama on the Fall of 2011 and they will tell Obama that the Party cannot support him in 2012. Soon afterwards Obama will go on national television announcing the fact that he will not seek re-election. The Grand Experiment will have failed.

Frederick Smith (not verified) 10 years 25 weeks ago

On the anniversary of the swearing-in: Although I was jaundiced after having my prior Clinton worship (Bill) deflated by the revelations of his Repub-style laissez-faire economics, I supported Hillary in 08 despite the subliminal sexism still flourishing in the USA (another factor behind Ms. Coakley's loss in 'Bastin' and thereabouts--note Chris Mathews sneering and calling her "stupid" (!) on election day for forgetting the Sox's pitcher), because Hill is a she-lion about getting things done. But I joined in and voted for Obama after the primaries, and enjoyed the historic swearing-in. It's often said he patterned his first Presidential decisions after Lincoln. How ironic to see, by now, that he bears a far closer resemblance to Henry Clay (the Great Compromiser) who, you know, failed to avert the Civil War....

Trump Has Only Had One Job In His Entire Life: Celebrity. Will It Work For Him in November?

Thom plus logo With one simple understanding, everything about Trump's life and presidency comes into focus.

Why would it be that Trump refuses to do his job, including reading intelligence reports? Why would Trump revel in lies and outrageous statements? Why would he retweet a game show hosts conspiracy theories about the coronavirus while trashing his own scientists? Why is Trump, every day, waking up and asking how he can capture the news cycle regardless of its impact on public health or democracy?
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