Recent comments

  • May 21 2009 - Thursday   10 years 17 weeks ago

    If Guantanamo is such a showplace, then why haven't Condo's been built their.

  • May 21 2009 - Thursday   10 years 17 weeks ago

    Dick Cheney is a founding member of the new GOP. Grand Oligarchy Party.

  • May 21 2009 - Thursday   10 years 17 weeks ago


    Over the last two days, I've heard you mock Americans who are afraid of having people they believe are terrorists moved from Guantanamo to prisons in the United States. You called them cowards and frightened little men and women.

    I can understand criticizing government officials who should know better and demagogic politicians and media personalities for whipping up this fear, but it seems out of character for you (an advocate of Gandhian principles) to be mocking people who have been misinformed into fearfulness.

    If these people are conservatives, we know they tend to fear people who look or speak differently than they do. But isn't it your job as a "progressive" opinion leader to be open to understanding their fears and helping your audience do the same?

    One of the complaints one often hears from non-elite conservatives is that the left looks down on them and their concerns. I don't see how mocking their fears will help winning them over to more progressive views.

    It also seems strange that you love to talk to and debate the the highly paid corporately backed right-wing fear mongers, showing them great respect and often attesting to their good character. But now, you're mocking the fears the common folks that have fallen victim to the lies and distortions of these well paid propagandist.

    On the other hand, just two days ago (May 19) you cut off a caller who merely asked that you have more progressive guests on your show. You told that caller, who couldn't respond because you dumped his call, that you were all the "progressive" your audience needs and you think you do a fine job, thank you very much, of representing the progressive point of view.

    That seemed like a fear based response to me.

  • May 21 2009 - Thursday   10 years 17 weeks ago

    FACEBOOK FOLK: Join the group - Polar Bears Against Palin

  • Arlen Specter Checked A Card   10 years 17 weeks ago

    I clearly disagree with libertarianism because I’ve never met a libertarian who admits that the very complex marketplace we experience in this country evolved with the government’s help—for good or bad. Corporate charters, tax codes, regulation of stock exchanges, patents, copyrights, contract law, courts, etc. are creations of the very government that “free-market” libertarians deride. Is it perfect? Heck no. The purpose of government vis a vis the marketplace is supposed to be to create a level playing field so that large, medium, and small players have confidence to participate. The deeper, wider, more diverse, and more dynamic the marketplace is, the better.

    The only free market that exists, as Thom has explained, is when two people exchange products or services (i.e., Farmer A exchanges his goat for Farmer B’s sheep). Not even money, issued by the government, could be exchanged. And no methods of regulated transportation or communications (i.e., trucks, public roads, phones, postal service) could be used . Now that may sound ridiculous. But it is truly the only way to have a transaction where the government has no part in making it happen. And our recognizing how government has evolved with the private sector and individuals to play a role (good or bad) in so many facets of our complex lives is important.

    Of course, libertarians would argue that the private sector can do whatever government does better. Again, I clearly disagree. But that’s another discussion.

    So when We the People (the government) want to level the marketplace for workers by allowing them to belong to unions in a fair and open way, without intimidation and delay tactics by employers and to bargain collectively, it’s no more interventionist than the myriad of government interventions that benefit other groups—mostly corporations. To be concerned about favoring workers and just ignore all the favoritism bestowed by the government for employers, or worse yet—just calling it the “free market” and not even acknowledging the government’s favoritism—is not, I believe, intellectually honest.

    Some libertarians do acknowledge the favoritism, only they don’t call it that. It’s just a function of what is moral in a capitalistic society in their minds. Positive incentives are justly bestowed on the “producers” and the rabble need negative incentives to keep them in line. Then when you point out their classist bias, they start screaming “That’s class warfare!” But perpetuating the bias is class warfare by the privileged on everyone else. They want favoritism, AND they don’t want anyone to acknowledge it let alone call it favoritism. Can arrogance be any more willful than that?

  • May 21 2009 - Thursday   10 years 17 weeks ago

    Tom your show rips it up man! Makes a days work nice and good to the lunch hour.

    Did Dick win? Dick is a ghost that breaths O2! His history should be visually tabbed in a bullet list every time one talks about the executive power he and the rest of the neo-con-artist have forced us to listen to on mainstream tv for these many years/decades. My brain wants a better world and a better nation, my two party trap Wall Street, K-Street Lobby gives me a good cop and a bad cop! A government gone bad a post modern industrial complex. HELP!!!!!!!!

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    As a comment on Thom's 911 comment to the caller, I think that it was known ahead that the planes were going to hit the WTC and the demolition was planned afterward to increase the effect. This would answer Thom's question as to why the building were not just bombed.
    All indications are that the Pentagon crash was a total fraud.

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    Is our economy on the brink of a revival? Quite possibly.

    In Homer's "Odyssey," Odysseus had to steer his ship between two hazards, Scilla and Charibdis. If he got too close to one or the other, his ship would be dashed upon its rocks.

    The Scilla and Charibdis of the world economy are Capital and Labor. If we steer a course too favorable to one or the other, we crash. We just about crashed on the rocks of Capital last year, and the Obama administration is doing what it can to correct our course.

    If Capital is given too much power, it invariably enslaves and harries Labor while plumbing new depths of excess. We need to remember the grotesque hog-slop we witnessed beginning with the election of Ronald Reagan and finally collapsing in the final year of Bush Two. Given too much rein, Capital will "pollute the public treasure and accumulate wealth by impoverishing others," as Albert Pike put it.

    We can't steer too close to Labor either, though. That way lies anarchy, which inevitably results in a new totalitarianism.

    We need capital to create jobs. We need banks to provide funding for development. But we need to watch those with money like hawks.

    We need controls over financial markets. We need to reduce the power of corporations over elected officials. We need to have a minimum wage that allows workers stability, if not comfort. We need to adjust tax rates to take less from those who have the least.

    After World War II, most U.S. families had adequate incomes. In most families there was just one wage-earner. Taxes were relatively low on the lower and middle classes, and were confiscatory for the very rich. Corporations paid a big chunk of the taxes, too.

    What happened? The rich and the corporations didn't like it, and they could afford to do something about it: they bought elected officials.

    We just took the government back from these people. It's tenuous, but our majority is big enough to steer us away from the excesses of Capital.

    This is our best chance to fix things, and Barak Obama is moving us in that direction. It's long overdue.

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    This is a perpetually off-topic issue on this show, but last Friday, and black male in Seattle was sentenced to 11 years in prison after pleading guilty to felony murder for a crime that would normally be called involuntary manslaughter. It was noted that this man had a prior criminal record, as if to make the sentence more palatable. Minorities always seem to have a criminal record—and if they don’t, the police always seem eager to provide them with one. The now defunct Seattle P-I published a report on how police often instigate confrontations that lead to arrests. If all else fails, then “obstruction” and “contempt of cop” is a handy way of getting a minority who has no criminal record a toehold in the criminal justice system.
    One day last year I exited a bus in Renton after work with the intention of walking to the Fry’s Electronics store. I had not gotten far when I attracted the notice of a white female cop who followed me in her car for a few minutes, dodging in and out of parking lots. She then cut me off on the sidewalk, jumped out of her car and had me up against a wall. Moments later two other cops were on the scene; the contents of my small backpack were subsequently strewn on the ground. The cops asked me what I was doing and I told them, and they informed me that I fit the description of someone who had just robbed a bank. Of course I was incredulous, and informed them that I just gotten off work and a bus. I also informed them that I believed that they were guilty of harassment due to my “ethnic” appearance, and intended to file a complaint. In order to “appease” me one the cops called dispatch to allow me to hear the description of the perpetrator: dark clothes, white, five-feet ten, and grey hair. “See,” said the cop, “you’re wearing dark clothes”—my airport uniform. I pointed out that I was five-feet five, had dark hair and I had certainly attracted attention because I was not “white,” and non-whites tend to be guilty of something in the eyes of white cops. After awhile, another squad car arrived with a witness to the alleged robbery, and no sooner had the witness arrived I was left alone on the sidewalk, with no apology and my belongings still strewn all over the ground. Three cops wasting their time because of racial profiling for a half-hour, while the real perpetrator was making his getaway.
    There seems to be, in my opinion, two tiers of justice in this country: one for whites, and one for everyone else. The acquittal of two white teens in the beating death of a Latino in Pennsylvania is on one tier; the sentencing of the African-American for what is being called the felony murder of a white man is on another tier.
    Don’t believe me? Let’s review some recent local cases. A white firefighter who killed while DUI two Vietnamese girls who were walking on a sidewalk. He was sentenced to probation; all his supporters cheered lustily, and the family members of the deceased were so swept-up in the happy event that they joined in expressing joy in this shining example of “justice.” Contrast this with the African-American Bellevue police officer who, while DUI, severely injured his friend and killed a man in another car who was also DUI. Unlike the white firefighter, he felt he should be punished, and white justice obliged him with jail time.
    Another case: The white woman struck and killed five members of a Bulgarian immigrant family of Turkish origin, while driving under the influence of a cell phone. Prosecutors declined to press charges, because there was no law against using a cell phone while driving. It’s hard to believe a Mexican immigrant had been responsible in like fashion for the death a family of white people for the same reason would have gotten off without so much as a dinged conscious. The outrage of some people over this case led to the new laws regarding hand-held cell phone while driving (which, by the way, most people ignore).
    In the case I mentioned off the top, it’s hard not to see incongruities. First, that the deceased was illegally blocking traffic with cones was not noted; it was nice that he was watering flowers in a street circle, but I’m sure if some black codger was doing the same, white neighbors would have had the police on him like a duck on a June Bug. The girls who instigated the confrontation because they didn’t want to drive around the obstruction, and called the defendant from his home to come and "help" them, got away scot-free from any form of reprimand. The black man who punched the white man once and walked away had no thought of killing the man, but was still sentenced on a procedure set down by a new state law that makes involuntary manslaughter felony murder—a procedure that one might strongly conjecture is specifically targeted to minorities.
    Yet recently in Shenandoah, PA white youths were acquitted by an all-white jury, in a town consumed by anti-Latino hatred, of the beating death of a Latino man, in a case purposely bungled by a prosecution who allowed an adult who apparently delivered the fatal blow to be the “star witness.” After the verdict, the all-white supporters cheered so lustily that even the judge and sheriff were moved to admonish them.

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    Responding to Thom's thought process of "maybe G.W. Bush is addicted to death":
    This may be the case. After reading "Bush on the Couch," the story of his sister's illness & death & the way his parents brushed the event under the rug, I gained a strange empathy for G.W. Not enough to forgive him for being a mass murderer, but maybe enough to forgive him after I see him in jail.

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    Did I say something wrong that you're not posting my comment and links?

  • May 18th 2009 - Monday   10 years 18 weeks ago


    Endless internment without a timeline -- that is PSYCHOLOGICAL TORTURE. So we are continuing to torture, even under Obama....

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    is graig shirley advising newt ?

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    Thom may be onto something regarding the relationship between fear and addiction. For example, here's some food for thought:

    “Fear - The Motivation Of Addiction?”—The-Motivation-Of-Addiction?&id=956858

    “Beyond Fear and Addiction”

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    Darwin Awards have Gold and Silver distinctions:

    Golds are folk who term themselves BEFORE spawning at all.

    Silvers are folk who term themselves AFTER spawning BUT before the spawn again . . .

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    bush ,cheney rhumsfeld ... all have a right wing authoritarian personality. they can not think and decide right from wrong.

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago
  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    Why is there addiction?
    This mechanism allows Mothers (and fathers to a lesser degree) to get addicted to their children. This may sound crazy but I have read about this. Think about a mother who hears her 2 week old cry while she is sleeping. What about a 4 week old? If a helpless individual (new born) cannot get someone addicted to him / her this small helpless person is at a great disadvantage. Sex feels good to help propagate the species. Parents get addicted to their children so they always think about them. This is where the addiction mechanism comes from. There are other ways to 'tickle' this mechanism. Some examples: chocolate, some other foods, sex, gambling, drinking, many drugs and many other things that I have not mentioned. I am just trying to discuss the WHY. And many things about us are to propagate the species - it is only natural. There is NOTHING wrong to a parent getting addicted to their small helpless child!

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    we must learn that everything is based on cause and efect in life. when it comes to gaming, drinking drugingor anything in life. we must say what causes i'm i making.

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    I have to point out, Thom - at least the second time I've heard you reference the Darwin Awards, and missed the critical distinction. They were originally conceived as a collection of true stories of people who kill themselves in stupid ways - thereby taking themselves out of the gene pool. Just being stupid doesn't qualify - if you live to reproduce and pass on the stupid genes, you have eluded the Darwinian filter!

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago


  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    AND THAT ADRENALIN RUSH (mentioned by the caller who was a counselor) is exactly what happens DURING RISK-TAKING!

    That's what I'm talking about:

    GAMBLING is an addiction to RISK!

    Indeed, our American Society follows the model of addiction. And largely it is an addiction to risk-based behavior. It is celebrated, modelled to our children, and is not subjected to moral, ethical, or common sense evaluation.

    The basis for the continuously dysfunctional behavior of George W. Bush, whether in alcoholic behavior, business behavior (insider trading), lying us into a war, torturing fellow humans, facilitating a U.S. Treasury give-away to the Banksters — THESE ALL INVOLVE A HUNGER TO SEE JUST HOW FAR HE COULD GO, JUST HOW MUCH HE COULD GET AWAY WITH. (Imagine what a rush Bush got when he STOLE an ELECTION!)


  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    I have a very serious addiction to which I am finally, after this show, able to admit. I am addicted to listening to Thom Hartmann every single weekday!

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    Robbery & Pizza . . . In short, he was hungry and wanted to go to jail . . . To guarantee his next X number of meals . . .

    What would you do if you had no choices?

  • May 20th 2009 - Wednesday   10 years 18 weeks ago

    nora -- it is part of the 'don't regulate' equation. high fructose corn syrup, leaded paint on toys, genetically modified seeds, ..... it is all part of the fascist lobbying efforts and political contributions that buy their interests over the average Americans.

    The same people who can deny others everything are famous for refusing themselves nothing.
    Leigh Hunt

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