Saturday, September 18, 2010

22 Statistics That Prove The Middle Class Is Being Systematically Wiped Out Of Existence In America

83 percent of all U.S. stocks are in the hands of 1 percent of the people.

61 percent of Americans "always or usually" live paycheck to paycheck, which was up from 49 percent in 2008 and 43 percent in 2007.

66% of the income growth between 2001 and 2007 went to the top 1% of all Americans.

36 percent of Americans say that they don't contribute anything to retirement savings.
A staggering 43 percent of Americans have less than $10,000 saved up for retirement.

24% of American workers say that they have postponed their planned retirement age in the past year.

Over 1.4 million Americans filed for personal bankruptcy in 2009, which represented a 32 percent increase over 2008.

Only the top 5 percent of U.S. households have earned enough additional income to match the rise in housing costs since 1975.

For the first time in U.S. history, banks own a greater share of residential housing net worth in the United States than all individual Americans put together.

In 1950, the ratio of the average executive's paycheck to the average worker's paycheck was about 30 to 1. Since the year 2000, that ratio has exploded to between 300 to 500 to one.

As of 2007, the bottom 80 percent of American households held about 7% of the liquid financial assets.

The bottom 50 percent of income earners in the United States now collectively own less than 1 percent of the nation’s wealth.

Average Wall Street bonuses for 2009 were up 17 percent when compared with 2008.

In the United States, the average federal worker now earns 60% MORE than the average worker in the private sector.

The top 1% of U.S. households own nearly twice as much of America's corporate wealth as they did just 15 years ago.

In America today, the average time needed to find a job has risen to a record 35.2 weeks.

More than 40% of Americans who actually are employed are now working in service jobs, which are often very low paying.

For the first time in U.S. history, more than 40 million Americans are on food stamps, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture projects that number will go up to 43 million Americans in 2011.

This is what American workers now must compete against: in China a garment worker makes approximately 86 cents an hour and in Cambodia a garment worker makes approximately 22 cents an hour.

Despite the financial crisis, the number of millionaires in the United States rose a whopping 16 percent to 7.8 million in 2009.

Approximately 21 percent of all children in the United States are living below the poverty line in 2010 - the highest rate in 20 years.

The top 10% of Americans now earn around 50% of our national income.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Vote for the Looney Tune Party!

The Campaign Begins

The Campaign Begins

Now is the time to get excited


The Enthusiasm Gap
A liberal is someone who can't admit that they've won.
A conservative is someone who can't admit that they've lost
Much as been made of The Enthusiasm Gap. Essentially, Democrats aren't as excited about their candidates as Republicans (or teabaggers) are about theirs. That's because Democrats, at least the ones on the left, can't see their great success for the missed opportunities. Meanwhile, the Republicans, at least the ones on the right (or the ones on the extreme deep end) just can't see that everything they have done in the past thirty years has been a major failure.
Ronald Reagan, who had a terrible first two years, kept his base active by the by reminding supporters, We are the change.
Of course, Reagan and the right changed the US from being the world's largest creditor nation to the world's largest debtor. As I wrote here in 2003, Reagan campaigned for 16 years as a staunch defender of a balanced budget, but changed instantly to shove the largest budgest deficits up to that time, which created Cognitive Dissonance in his supporters: He literally drove the right crazy. By firing striking air traffic controllers, he helped change America to a place with strong workers into a trickle down nightmare that has done nothing but help the rich get richer while moving jobs overseas. He changed Carter's successful campaign to diminish the Soviet Union into one where he had to prop them up to justify his obscene debt. The Soviet Union eventually collapsed anyway, and Reagan's sycophants have been misassigning credit ever since. Reagan changed Carter's successul policy of not negotiating with terrorists which led to the suicide bombs in Beirut and eventually Al Queda and 9/11.
But I digress. A good list of Reagan's failures (and a few successes) in The Reagan Legacy. This is old news, but needs mentioning because Fox "News" and the mainstream media have been lying about Reagan/Bush/Bush for so long. The left, despite winning the last two elections, hasn't controlled the debate.
The right and the extreme right is not so much enthusiastic as angry. Angry at being so wrong. Angry at people who don't look like them. Angry at losing. So far, this is translating into votes.
Remember: Obama and the Democrats are the change. We want to continue moving forward.
So it's time. Time to A) revel in our victories, which have been many and B) time to be active, not reactive.
Be passionate! We're the good guys!

The accomplishments of President Obama and the 111th Congress controlled by the Democratic Party
The 111th Congress was very busy. Democrats did very well. Major accomplishments were many. A few highlights:
Quietly returning to a reality-based system of government
Thanks to Fox "News" and the 24-hour news cycle that covers the immediacy of the horserace and ignores context and consequence, Americans have a very short attention span and a very short political memory. Remember how bad Bush was? Remember than he just ignored the law and made signing statements and Executive Orders even if they were the opposite of what the law said? (Bush is another Big Government Republican who doesn't believe in State's rights... )Fortunately, adults are in the White House now. Some people were paying attention but the Democrats didn't control the debate enough to make more than a splash for doing the right thing. A few examples:
Moving forward
We are the change. In a very short amount of time, the good guys have undone a lot of damage created by the Bush administration and the Gingrich Congress. Obama and the Democrats have accomplished a lot. This isn't television where everything gets wrapped up in an hour and all issues come to a resolution before the credits. Politics is messy and ofttimes unpleasant. But you can't let go, or the bad guys win.
To be a conservative these days, one must believe lies and not believe the truth. As liberals and progressives, you have to live in the world G_d made; and you have to live in the country governed by people. My plan: Pay attention to people who were right in the past and marginalize those who have been consistently wrong. And let's face it: In almost every issue, liberals have been right and conservatives have been wrong. Say this often.
I'll have more of this later. For now, you need to start getting your dander up. This is an important election; they all are. You have an advantage over your right-wing friends: All you have to do is speak the truth.
If the Republicans take either the House or the Senate, disaster looms. Ensuring large majorities of sane legislators is the only way to keep America strong. Do your part.

Baron Dave Romm is a conceptual artist and a noble of Ladonia who produces Shockwave Radio Theater, writes in a Live Journal demi-blog maintains a Facebook Page, plays with a very weird CD collection and an ever growing list of political links. Dave Romm reviews things at random for obscure web sites. You can read all his music recommendations from Bartcop-E. Podcasts of Shockwave Radio Theater. Permanent archive. A nascent collection of videos are on Baron Dave's YouTube channel. More radio programs, interviews and science fiction humor plays can be accessed on the Shockwave Radio audio page.
Thanks to everyone who has sent me music to play on the air.

Saturday, September 4, 2010


Bicycle Crash Injuries
Injuries from bicycle crashes are most often to the limbs, and include fractures, abrasions, and lacerations. Fractures account for about 25 percent of bike crash injuries, and facial injuries account for about one third of injuries. The most disabling and serious injuries are brain injuries. These are so severe because they can result in a permanent defect or disability. Head injuries are also more likely to be fatal.
What To Do When In a Bike-Car Crash
To the extent possible and practical to avoid further accidents or injuries after a bicycle crash, do the following:
*Keep completely still if you may be severely injured. Wait for medical help.
* Accept medical help, even if you do not feel severely injured.
* Wait for the police so an accident report can be filed with statements from witnesses, and the at-fault driver, and the crash scene investigated.
* Leave damaged property and equipment as it was until police arrive.
* Contact a personal injury lawyer who understands bicycling.
Bicycle Safety and Crash Prevention
Not surprisingly, helmets can protect again head injuries – both brain injuries and upper facial injuries. Statistics have shown that of the 75 percent of bike riders who got severe brain injury in an accident were not wearing helmets. To provide proper protection, helmets must be fitted correctly.
Although helmets can protect against head injury, they do not protect from getting hit by cars! To help prevent personal injury, bicyclists must use common sense and remain alert when cycling on roads to avoid crashes with cars. Although drivers should be more attentive to the presence of bicyclists, the odds of injury favor the bicyclist. This is why it is so important to follow some basic common sense prevention guidelines which include:
* Follow the law – ride on the right side of road; stop at stop signs and red lights; use a headlight at night (also beneficial in the day).
* Avoid stopping in the blind spot of a car at a red light. You can be hit if it turns right and you go straight.
* Use a bell or horn to signal or alert drivers of your presence.
*Use a rear light and headlight, especially when it is dark outside.
* Use a mirror to glance at traffic behind, especially when approaching intersections.
* Be attentive and alert to the cars. Watch for left turning cars crossing in front that may not see you, and pay attention to parked cars for which a door may open.
*Do not ride very fast in case you need to stop abruptly.
* Avoid riding on sidewalks.
* Avoid busy streets, especially as a novice rider.