Daily Topics - Friday February 18th, 2011

"Anything Goes Friday!"

Hour One: Why we should raise taxes on the super-rich and lower them on the middle class - Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor

Hour Three: War on Labor - Congresswoman Gwen Moore (D-WI, 4th District)

Comments

rladlof's picture
rladlof 9 years 20 weeks ago
#1

Republicans hate odd numbers . . . Such as the First Amendment

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting

the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press;

>>> or the right of the people

peaceably to assemble, <<< and to

petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 9 years 20 weeks ago
#2

Noam Chomsky was on Democracy Now this morning talking about Wisconsin and Labor. Worth the time to listen to if you can make the time.

N

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 9 years 20 weeks ago
#3

"The best defense is a good offense" - Mel the cook on 'Alice'

If the Unions are fighting for survival, perhaps is time they did organize large movements, and perhaps it would be better for them to organize locally around the country. 99ers might not be able to get to DC for a rally, but I bet a lot of them could make it to, San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Las Vegas, Chicago, Atlanta, New Orleans, New York, and the State Capitols around the country. Think about what would happen if about 5,000 - 10,000 showed up at all these places at the same time.

N

Pretzelogic in Philly PA's picture
Pretzelogic in ... 9 years 20 weeks ago
#4

Holy cow! As if I didn't feel like I had enough to be "paranoid" about these days - apparently it's getting to the point that we all may as well be living in the "Matrix". Check out this DailyKos posting by Happy Rockefeller, seriously:

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/02/16/945768/-UPDATED:-The-HB-Gary-Email-That-Should-Concern-Us-All

Suddenly, a lot of what I thought I'd been seeing online lately starts to make a lot more sense...

Once again, if they have to LIE to "make their point", they essentially are admitting that their point is BS to begin with!

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 9 years 20 weeks ago
#5

Wow, Thom, what a concept, the US Military running on hemp and fighting for it... its too ironic for me to completely wrap my head around it.

doreen's picture
doreen 9 years 20 weeks ago
#6

Tax cuts for billionaires....wage cut for workers. The Republican agenda: welcome to Third World America.

Reed.Young's picture
Reed.Young 9 years 20 weeks ago
#7

The United States is still the richest country on Earth.

As Robert Reich said, the feeling of shortage that Koch, et al use to pit factions of the working classes against one another is an illusion created by billionaires and multimillionaires, for the purpose of distracting us from the fact that they are not paying their fair share. There is no shortage of capital in the United States. There is no budget crisis. There is only a tax code crisis. The "budget deficit" has nothing to do with programs that promote the general welfare.

And I believe that civility is always important. It's the mark of intelligence and self-discipline. But this "era of civility" theme is largely misplaced because Liberals never contributed to the outbreak of politically motivated violence the past couple years. Bill O'Reilly, not any Liberal, provoked Scott Ritter to kill Dr. Tiller. And Glenn Beck, not any Liberal, provoked that other wackjob to try to attack the Tides Foundation. The guy who flew his plane into an IRS building and the other one who opened fire on a Holocaust memorial in Pennsylvania were likewise influenced in no way whatsoever by Liberals, only by Fox "News" and other extremist sources, on the opposite side of the spectrum from Liberal and Progressive politics. So, while it's important to be civil for the same reasons as always, Liberals being extra civil at this particular time will not really do much, in my opinion, to solve the problem that this "era of civility" is intended to address, politically motivated violence perpetrated by conservatives, ultra-conservatives and off-the-chart "libertarian" anarchists. I applaud the sentiment but I am just doubtful that those of us who were never any part of this particular problem can effectively address this particular problem, by this particular method.

Getting to the root of such hateful actions is what will help. I believe the root of this outburst of politically motivated violence -- which is the definition of "terrorism" by the way -- is really not any perception of incivility nor any reality-based complaint of any kind, against Liberal or Progressive ideals or any real Liberal or Progressive persons. The real cause is desperation. The IRS suicide pilot's rant, which Randi Rhodes read on the air the day that story broke, particularly supports the interpretation that "desperation" is the psychological root of such attacks. At the very least, it's very clear that individual acted out of pure desperation. And as to the others, and the various teabaggers who bring and demonstratively display their guns to "peacefully assemble" at political events and so on, I'll just assume that it's common knowledge that feelings of desperation tend to lead people to act, well, in a desperate manner.

So the question is, where does desperation come from? It comes from feeling that a problem cannot be solved. And imagining that I was a conservative, hearing day in and day out that all "Liberals" and "Progressives" want to blindly pursue policies that will bankrupt the country, lead to the downfall of civilization and free society, etc. and I also knew that ~50% of votes or more are reliably cast for Democrats, I suppose I would feel quite desperate about the state of society and politics. It's not true, but it's what they're being told and I think it's the real reason for this outburst of political violence.

The real problem with the national budget is the tax code, and it's caused by just a few dozen billionaires and a few hundred multi-millionaires, and their lobbyists, and from my perspective that is a much more manageable problem than the ~50% of the nation which conservatives believe is the root of the United States' financial problems. And it's worth mentioning that seeing the over-privileged as the real problem also defuses Liberals' concerns that ~50% of the population that self-identifies and votes "conservative" really wants to establish a Christian theocracy, define abortion and homosexuality as crimes and deny the scientific facts of global warming to which 98% of all professionals testify. Although Liberals tend to consider those "conservative" agenda items, they are actually corporatist wedge issues, and each is really supported by only a statistically insignificant fringe of society. So both sides of the working class are being fed lies about the other to distract us from the real enemy, the Kochs, Armeys and Tim Phillipses of the world. So it's not just conservatives that believe untrue things about "the other side."

This is why I think it's absolutely vital to make the bottom line of all these discussions about economics in politics: the fact that there is really not a shortage of wealth in this country at all. There is only a shortage of justice in the tax code that is so full of intentional loopholes that can only be exploited with large amounts of liquid capital, allowing the over-privileged to evade paying their fair share to support the society from which they disproportionately benefit.

It's really just a couple hundred people gaming the system. It's not all conservatives or even most conservatives, any more than it's all Liberals or even most Liberals. This is a manageable problem, because it's not Liberals v. conservatives at all. It's not ~50% of us v. the other ~50% of us. It's people who work for a living v. people who "create wealth" by shuffling around vast amounts of wealth, 99%+ v. less than 1%. We should maybe take a moment to be embarrassed that so many of us have been so deceived by so few, but more importantly, we should remember that the "left-right" political spectrum is the invention of our true enemy, the over-privileged owners of the corporate media who are abusing the tax code, and having it re-written to their advantage, so egregiously that they are all by themselves causing a budget deficit in the wealthiest country on Earth.

I suppose now I should do the math, proving that closing all tax loopholes on all income > $1,000,000 would pay for all discretionary spending, with more to spare? I know those data are around here somewhere...

gerald's picture
gerald 9 years 20 weeks ago
#8

The United States of Mortal Sin is a sinful nation. Americans will face the wrath of God!

http://news.antiwar.com/2011/02/18/the-arsenal-against-democracy-us-arms-fuel-bahraini-crackdown/

Here is the last paragraph from the above article.

And really, it should have been obvious from the start. Why would Bahrain, an island nation, need scores of heavily armored tanks, if not to turn them on the public? Is not the privilege of being an island nation that you don’t have to worry about heavy armor? Who exactly did American arms dealers believe these tanks would target, and if they knew all along they would be used to crush dissent, how can Congress not be planning massive investigations?

I believe that the American lust for killing God's children will never end. Our sinful nation is not spreading democracy. We are spreading dictatorial rule, mass murderers, and war criminals.

gerald's picture
gerald 9 years 20 weeks ago
#9

This budget should leave little doubt that the United States of Mortal Sin is a fascist-Nazi nation. Our empire is seeking to control every nation on the planet.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-02-18/your-5-555-defense-bill-chokes-on-waste-commentary-by-veronique-de-rugy.html

Is God permitting America's slide into the abyss of an eternal hell?

gerald's picture
gerald 9 years 20 weeks ago
#10

An Open Confession

Catholics have the Sacrament of Reconciliation and non-Catholic Christians are now discussing the importance of counseling by Protestant ministers. There is a belief that confession is good for the soul.

I, too, believe that confession is good for the soul. Here is my open confession to the readers. Actually, it is my confession to a priest in California while we were visiting our son. Our son’s parish church is a very conservative church.

Bless me father for I have sinned! It has been about a month from my last confession. I have committed the following sins.

After reciting my litany of sins from various sources like the Ten Commandments, the Beatitudes, and the Seven Cardinal Sins I asked the priest a question. I cannot deny that I am a sinner.

Father, I am starting to want and wish that Americans would feel the pain and suffering like other countries so we might have more sympathy for their plight. Wanting and wishing pain and suffering to any of God’s children is a mortal sin and it is similar to people who believe that the Iraq war is right and moral. Believing in the Iraq war is a mortal sin!!! The priest said to me that I did not have to want or wish for our country to experience pain and suffering because we are presently feeling this pain and suffering. Americans will continue to feel pain and suffering because they will not repent. Unless Americans repent, there will be ongoing pain and suffering.

What the priest said to me made me feel good because I no longer had to want and wish pain and suffering for any of God’s children. As I look around, I can see Americans feeling the pain and suffering. This pain and suffering is ongoing because Americans refuse to repent.

I asked the priest for forgiveness for the sins I can remember and for the sins I cannot remember.

I concluded my confession by thanking the priest for answering my question. The priest gave me my penance to complete and the absolution and I said an Act of Contrition. He also said “Go with God” and I thanked him. This is my open confession to all who care to read it.

Numb Nut Americans will never repent because they believe their way is the right way. They are never wrong. Every day Numb Nut Americans commit the Cardinal Sin of Pride. We can no wrong. A false belief is embedded in their psyche that we, Numb Nuts, are good, holy, and saintly. Actually, we are the devil’s disciples.

gerald's picture
gerald 9 years 20 weeks ago
#11

Confession

I am certain that most people have heard the saying, CONFESSION IS GOOD FOR THE SOUL. This is an open letter of my confession.

Bless me neocons and kkkevangelicals! There is not a day that goes by in which I do not give some thought about being more like you. If I could be more like you, life for me would be a much happier place.

I am pissed; I am truly pissed that I cannot have what you have. If only I could love the smell of napalm in the morning; if only I could love the smell of burning flesh in the evening; and if only I could love the splatter of human body parts, I would be a much happier person.

I see how glorified you are with the pain and suffering of people but I agonize over their pain and suffering. Yet, I know that present and future happiness rests with all people who are glorified by seeing and in knowing that people are in pain and suffering. Fortunately for you, there will not be a day that goes by with you being unhappy. Unfortunately for me, the neocons and the kkkevangelicals will never give away their secrets for a happy life in seeing and in knowing that people are in pain and in suffering states of life.

Life would be an easier existence if I could be more like the neocons and the kkkevangelicals.

gerald's picture
gerald 9 years 20 weeks ago
#14
gerald's picture
gerald 9 years 19 weeks ago
#16

February 20, 2011

Our son called and he said that what is going on in Wisconsin is the final nail in the coffin of the middle class. America is no longer America. Our citizens must adjust to enslavement and poverty.

Here are some words from our church’s newsletter.

In order to accept and commit to Jesus’ teachings about nonviolence, forgiveness, and loving your enemies, we cannot be cowards. As Gandhi proved, it takes great bravery to forgive.

Jesus has said, “Love your enemies, pray for those who persecute you.” (These words are helpful for us but it is difficult to forgive unless you are able to know what you are forgiving. There are people who talk behind someone’s back for no justifiable reason. If you do not know why people are saying certain things about you, how can you forgive? When we forgive, we feel good but it is important for the person to let other people know that they lied about another person. To openly admit the lies will help the liar to feel good.)

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