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Recent comments

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    There is no doubt that a healthier life-style will keep Americans healthier. The sad news is that a simple appendectomy has a price tag of close to $20K.

  • April 7th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    Christopher Hitchens is the best. I had a sense ever since I was young that religion was bulls***. I told my family that Church was boring and we stopped going. I always kind of thought religion was okay. I mean, I liked Christmas. When I finally started finding some information on atheism, I felt like I finally knew why my childhood never seemed right. Anything that can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence, truer words were never spoken.

  • French Workers Hold their Boss Hostage: Why Do the French have an Uppity Middle Class and We Don’t?   10 years 2 weeks ago

    To Scotth,
    Please be careful. A lot of ppl break their arms patting themselves on the back so hard!
    And where do you get your "facts" about welfare recipients? Everyone was so sure things would really change when AFDC became TANF and got a 2 year limit. Turned out there wasn't much change at all because most ppl are only on it for 2 years max anyway. Turns out, hmm, they didn't need you hard-wrkg know-it-alls to make sure they went to work after all. gee. Maybe most ppl actually like to work.
    Maybe you aren't so special after all, Scotth. Sorry if that hurts a little, but maybe I saved you a broken arm.

  • April 7th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    Here's the link to the story about the Socialist Mayors in Milwaukee:

    http://www.facebook.com/ext/share.php?sid=68504893762&h=gZtpT&u=Y3AGy&re...

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    You were saying on the air earlier that we need to stop making things that blow up. I think you would also agree that we need to help our auto industry. What do jet airplanes (and other things that blow up) and cars have in common? They can both benefit greatly from using composite parts. Look at any flying machine today that was manufactured relatively recently and you will find composite parts on it. (composite parts are fiber reinforced resins, kind of like a towel with super glue poured on it, it makes really light weight and strong parts, spread this glue towel on a mold and it can be cured into almost any shape imaginable). Add to this the fact that Hemp fabric composites are becoming more common (kind of odd that it took this long considering The first Ford cars were trying to use hemp based composites). Just go to www.votehemp.com and watch the video on the homepage for "the market for hemp products". Hemp takes less water than cotton, and I assume it is more environmentally friendly (less of an impact when put in a landfill, less energy required to produce) and easier to come by than carbon fiber or some of the other fabrics they use.

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    Thom,

    I want to expand on my comment about your statement about 25% of in hospital deaths having iatrogenic causes, because you implied a comparison between standard western medical care and "alternate" approaches such as taking vitamins or naturopathy.

    There are two many ways that the two aren't comparable. Many of the iatrogenic causes of death are related to infections that are related to surgeries. In addition, you have hundreds of very ill people packed into hospital wards, many with compromised immune systems. Then you have doctors and nurses working long tiring shifts, going from patient to patient, often under severe time constraints, so that proper hygienic practices are fudged on.

    There are no similar circumstances in the alternatives you were comparing hospital care to.

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    There you go again, Thom,

    Telling us that entrepreneurship is the magic lantern for us to rub to solve our economic problems. The American economy is losing jobs at the rate of around 600,000 a month for the last several months. How many new businesses can we start and how many new businesses can the economy absorb?

    According to statistics from the Small Business Administration, 33% of small business startups fail within two years and only 44% last four years. And as you know, it can take one to two years or more, to start turning a profit.

    Among the most common causes for small business failures are poor management skills and insufficient capital. Where are your average laid-off workers going to come up with the capital or management skills? I can tell you that for the great majority, the answer is nowhere?

    Using Southwest Airlines is absurd. Even a four seat aircraft made in the 1960s can cost 10s or 100s of thousands of dollars.

    What you should be addressing, and what I’m not hearing on your show is how the American people, or at least liberals and progressives can get organized to get our government to stand up for the people and not for finance capital.

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    FP is right on! Both the rise of consumerism and the constant drumbeat that the markets are gods and government is evil have given the Power Elite fertile soil in which to scam us out of trillions of dollars!

    The reason we are not rising up and taking to the streets is that we are collectively (and subconsciously) afraid of doing anything that will upset the cart and keep us from buying all the stuff we are told to buy!

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    In order to resurrect the system we once had, we really have to do away with the religion of consumerism. That is the fuel that has gotten us in the situation we are in today. Obama represents hope. He is, however, only one man. We cannot rely on him to save us by himself. We must wake up, pay attention, and VOTE out of office all those who perpetuate this destructive system.

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    The system is supposed to service us. We are victims of a government that has been purchased, and is now a wholly owned subsidiary of corporate America. We now exist to service the system. This system must be destroyed. We need a third party; the republicans are simply the most virulent agent of corruption in the system we live under. Democrats aren't much better; when it comes to voting for the interests of the common man, they are typically asleep at the wheel, or engaged in some sort of tap dance to avoid telling us why we don't have universal health care.

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    Thom,

    Saying that 25% of all hospital deaths are iatrogenic isn't the same as saying that 25% of people who get on airplanes die in a crash.

    The proper comparison would be to say that 25% of people who go to a hospital die due to iatrogenic causes, but that's not the case. And don't forget that our hospitals tend to be understaffed and the health care professionals who work in hospitals tend to be overworked.

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    Good Health Care include preventive medicine: Making sure we know about exercise and good nutrition. Making sure we know how to brush our teeth. Helping us exercise with deals at gyms.

    To the women who does not want people to eat candy all day: who is going to tell them that what they are doing is bad? The ER doctor at 2 am when their teeth fall out could tell them, but that is a little late. Good AFFORDable Health Care means preventive medicine.

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    Thom,

    You asked what someone could do that would be worth being paid $50,000 an hour.

    I would suggest it would have been worth it to pay both Bush and Cheney $50,000 an hour to do absolutely nothing over the last 8 years. I'd even expand that and pay all Republicans elected to public office $5,000 an hour to do nothing while they were in office.

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    Here's a great interview with William K. Black by Bill Moyers. Black was the Director of the Institute for Fraud Protection and the former senior regulator who cracked down on banks during the savings and loan crisis of the 1980s.

    He offers a scathing account of what happened and who is covering up how bad it really is.

    http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/04032009/watch.html

  • April 6th 2009   10 years 2 weeks ago

    In September of 2004, the FBI, OUR FBI, warned us of the coming mortgage crisis and meltdown!!

    http://www.cnn.com/2004/LAW/09/17/mortgage.fraud/

  • French Workers Hold their Boss Hostage: Why Do the French have an Uppity Middle Class and We Don’t?   10 years 3 weeks ago

    It's also "illegal" for state employees in Virginia to enter into collective bargaining. We haven't had a raise in a number of years. In fact a Virginia General Assembly Senate Committee came out with a report several years ago that stated that state employees in Virginia in general, were over 17% behind the private sector in compensation.

    Thom thanks for standing up for the lower and middle class.You are truly a Renaissance Man.

  • French Workers Hold their Boss Hostage: Why Do the French have an Uppity Middle Class and We Don’t?   10 years 3 weeks ago

    My husband is an active Teamster. He drives a city bus. Without the union, he would probably be making minimum wage and have no benefits. Blue-collar workers need unions, especially government employees, for the simple reason that labor is considered an expense. When company expenses increase, or when a company is failing, what is the first expense to be cut? Not the CEO's six- or seven-figure bonus. Usually not even the salaried employees in middle management. The first employees to be cut are those on the bottom. Without unions, company management has little to no incentive to pay employees a living wage or give them decent benefits, unless they choose to do so out of the goodness of their hearts--which let's face it, many of them don't. And many people assume what Scotth has assumed above--that these low-wage employees can just go get another job if they want to. Really? In this economy, where are they going to go? I live in North Carolina. We have an 11 percent unemployment rate here. Does anyone think that one in ten people in my state *choose* to be unemployed, or are too lazy to work? We were a strong manufacturing state at one time, until some greedy CEOs discovered that they could ship operations to China and pay a 10-year-old a dollar an hour to produce the same goods that American adults were producing here. This started in the early 80s--as Thom has often mentioned on his show, this started with Reagan, who in my opinion is the worst President we've ever had and ruined the country.

    As far as incentive: it is hard to have incentive or drive when working for $7 an hour for an oppressive or even abusive employer. It is hard to go back to school and learn new skills when you are having to work two jobs just to keep a roof over your head and feed your children. This is why Wal-Mart management is so afraid of unions, and had meetings back in the fall in which they told their employees not to vote for Obama. What are they afraid of exactly? That they wouldn't be able to force their employees to work overtime without pay anymore? That they might actually have to pay them a decent wage?

    It is *illegal* in North Carolina for state employees to enter into a collective bargaining contract. That goes beyond ridiculous. That is immoral. It is no wonder that state employees' benefits decrease year after year.

    Thank you, Thom, for sticking up for the laborer who often has no voice. I enjoy your show. A lot of good common sense there.

  • April 2 2009   10 years 3 weeks ago

    To Nora @ 4/2

    Thank you! "Debating" torture is simply a search for a justification. Torture is wrong, always and in all circumstances. It is amazing that those who advocate or justify torture can be so unaware of the effects on the torturer. What we do to our brother, we do to ourselves. We are the prisoners of our own moral choices. One would think that EVERY Christian minister, preacher or priest would be decrying this practice. One would think...

  • April 3 2009   10 years 3 weeks ago

    Does anyone know or have a link to the article that Thom was talking about today. It dealt with unemployment, welfare, food stamps and other things. I wanted to read it.

    Thanks

  • VIDEO OF THOM ON CNN'S "LARRY KING LIVE" 3/23/2009   10 years 3 weeks ago

    Yes...I am a plant...put in place by a giant right-wing organization. We wire-tap your phones and feel threatened by your radical ramblings. I would love to debate issues with Thom but he screens out conflicting callers. All he allows are right wing wacko guests that he knows he can tackle. I would love to see him take on a conservative host like a Limbaugh, Hannity or Levin. They would eat him alive. Despite his rantings, the founding fathers are rolling in their graves at what is happening to this country. When did Jefferson say that we are owed health care, a house, a job, a college education, etc.... Help yourself. Cheers!

  • French Workers Hold their Boss Hostage: Why Do the French have an Uppity Middle Class and We Don’t?   10 years 3 weeks ago

    BTW: Thom needs an algorithm that randomly orders comments so that the first or last comment isn't alway the first one read, so that each comment is handled with equality.

  • French Workers Hold their Boss Hostage: Why Do the French have an Uppity Middle Class and We Don’t?   10 years 3 weeks ago

    I don't want the last word to go to someone who so obviously a right wing hack spouting hateful, disrespectful words. I am sorry for him.

    It is not true that union people or the French are lazy. This person clearly doesn't understand the idea of social contract and has probably never read Rouseau. The way people live today requires a social safety net. It is only recently (within the last hundred years) in this country, that is has become impossible to exist outside of the political realm of our social contract. 100 years ago a person that wanted his freedom could go into the outlands, hunt start a farm, climb a mountain and survive on nature.

    Nature was the social safety net and it is no longer accessible. That is why the homeless crowd our cities. There are no unowned lands where they can live off of the bounty of nature. In order to be free people need to have some security and that is why it is important to have a minimal level of guaranteed support. It is the level that has always existed and has never stopped mankind from progressing.

    Almost all human beings want more from life than just be be fed and sheltered. They want respect. They want to fulfill their end of the social contract, which is to contribute to the well-being of their fellow men, brethren, countrymen.

  • April 3 2009   10 years 3 weeks ago

    Thom,

    I heard Lori Wallach the director of Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch on The Ron Reagan Show yesterday. She describes herself as a "recovering trade attorney".

    One thing she said really caught my ear. She said that she was reading the agreement that came out of one of the WTO rounds and found a "footnote" in it in that said that the Clinton Administration had agreed to get rid of Glass Steagall.

    You might like to have her on as a guest. I hope you take my suggestion, since we're on such good terms and all. :)

  • April 3 2009   10 years 3 weeks ago

    Chad Lupkes wrote:

    "Also, why are the form fields for name, email and website scattered among the previous few comments? That’s just weird."

    I think you're referring to the instability I mentioned on this blog recently. Sometimes the homepage formats properly but other times it doesn't it doesn't.

    It seems that there's some sort of bug in the code for this site. It's been going on for a while and I hope they get it fixed soon.

    However, it seems that when the homepage formats properly, it never finishes loading. When it formats properly, the statusbar always reads "Transfering data from www.freepress.net...." It never reads :Done".

    I've also found that when the homepage formats properly (but never finishes loading), I can't find the "Highlights" link that allows me to access past show topics and blogs. But when it doesn't format Properly, all the links are listed in a column on the left side of the page and the "Highlights" link is visible.

  • April 3 2009   10 years 3 weeks ago

    Thom,

    I can see the appeal of each state being able to design their health care system to fit the unique needs of their state, but I do have concerns about this approach.

    1) If education is the model, we have to make sure that we don't end up with the disparate results that we get in our educational system.

    2) Conservatives tend to try to undermine public services. I'm concerned that the legislatures in the more conservative (red states) might intentionally undermine the public health system to turn people away from it.

    3) I wonder how different the health needs are between the states. There may be some environmental factors and some geographic factors, but those could be compensated for through consultation between the national system and the states. It seems that the major differences may actually be between urban and rural areas.

    I'm not saying that the state based approach is wrong, but I think that there are many questions that have to be asked whatever direction we go.

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