Sunday, January 29, 2012

YOU HAVE NO RIGHTS - George Carlin - YouTube

YOU HAVE NO RIGHTS - George Carlin - YouTube

A Perspective from Portland, Oregon: It is Google's world, but

A Perspective from Portland, Oregon: It is Google's world, but: I am not sure that I want to live there. Google is exhibiting all the negative characteristics found with the narcissistic megalomaniac. Whi...

Graphic of World Military Spending (Iran's too Small to Show up) | Informed Comment

Graphic of World Military Spending (Iran's too Small to Show up) | Informed Comment

How to close your Google Account - The Washington Post

How to close your Google Account - The Washington Post

Obama’s State of the Union address: War and wage-cutting

Obama’s State of the Union address: War and wage-cutting

Common Man News: George Soros predicts class war in U.S. as euro triggers collapse of global economy

Common Man News: George Soros predicts class war in U.S. as euro triggers collapse of global economy

FBI seeking social media monitoring tool | The Raw Story

FBI seeking social media monitoring tool | The Raw Story


According to the New York Times, workers at a factory in Shenzhen, China, owned by Foxconn (a company that manufactures iPhones, iPads and other devices for Apple) regularly work sixteen-hour, seven-day work weeks.
They stand until their legs swell and they can’t walk, and they perform repetitive motions on the production line for so long that some permanently lose the use of their hands. To cut costs, managers make workers use cheap chemicals that cause neurological damage. There has been a rash of suicides at the Foxconn plant, and 300 workers recently threatened to jump off the roof over a safety and pay dispute.
In short, as one former Apple executive told the New York Times, "Most people would be really disturbed if they saw where their iPhone comes from."
Mark Shields, a self-described member of the "cult of Mac," started a petition on demanding Apple exert its influence on its suppliers to improve working conditions for the factory workers that make iPhones, iPads and other Apple products. Click here to sign Mark’s petition right now.
Apple knows it can play an important role in ensuring safe and fair working conditions for the workers at its suppliers, like Foxconn. In 2005, the company released a supplier code of conduct, and it performs hundreds of audits each year in China and around the world to confirm its suppliers are meeting the code’s expectations.
But that’s where Apple’s commitment falters: the number of supplier violations has held steady year to year and Apple hasn’t consistently publicly stated which suppliers have problems or dropped offending suppliers.
The bottom line, Apple executives admit, is that they’re not being forced to change.
One current executive told the New York Times that there’s a trade-off: "You can either manufacture in comfortable, worker-friendly factories," he said, or you can "make it better and faster and cheaper, which requires factories that seem harsh by American standards. And right now, customers care more about a new iPhone than working conditions in China."
That means public pressure is the only thing that can force Apple to ensure its suppliers treat workers humanely. If enough people sign Mark’s petition -- and tell Apple they care more about human beings than they do about how fast the company can produce the next generation iPhone -- the company could be convinced to make real change for the workers at Foxconn and other factories.

U.S falls to 47th in press freedom rankings after Occupy crackdown | Mail Online

U.S falls to 47th in press freedom rankings after Occupy crackdown | Mail Online

Friday, January 20, 2012


Bill Blum on the Roberts Court
"Three Supreme Court Cases That Should Worry You" -- If the Roberts court is consistent, 2012 could be remembered as a very bad year for working people, minorities and the poor.

Mr. Fish on Hitchens
"For Christopher Hitchens" -- It was like meeting a clown outside of his makeup, away from the hysteria of his profession, who appears lovely and handsome and noble, if only because he isn’t trapped in a spotlight at the center of a ludicrous pie fight. 

Barbara Ehrenreich and John Ehrenreich on the Fall of the "Liberal Elite"
"The Making of the American 99% and the Collapse of the Middle Class" -- Until a few months ago, the 99% was hardly a group capable of articulating “the identity of their interests.” It contained, and still contains, most “ordinary” rich people, along with middle-class professionals, factory workers, truck drivers, and miners, as well as the much poorer people who clean the houses, manicure the fingernails, and maintain the lawns of the affluent.

E.J. Dionne, Jr. on Blackballing Newt Gingrich
"Newt and the Revenge of the Base" -- It is one of the true delights of a bizarrely entertaining Republican presidential contest to watch the apoplectic fear and loathing of so many GOP establishmentarians toward Newt Gingrich.

"30 Companies Paid Lobbyists More Than the IRS" -- An analysis by Public Campaign reveals that between 2008 and 2010, 30 of America’s most profitable companies, including Verizon, Wells Fargo, FedEx, GE and Mattel, spent more money buying influence in Washington than they did paying taxes.

"Hedges on Hitchens" -- Though he gives credit to Christopher Hitchens’ exceptional talent, Chris Hedges remembers the newly departed writer differently from the way others might in this clip from CBC Radio. In an unflinching appraisal, Hedges recalls what Hitchens got wrong about religion, his biggest intellectual failing and what it was like to engage him in a debate.

"Kim Jong Il Is Dead" -- North Korea’s current dictator has died. State television gives the cause of death as—and this is not a joke—exhaustion from working too hard. Kim succeeded his father in 1994 and has indicated that his third son is to take over the responsibility of oppressing the North Korean people.
Bill Blum: Three Supreme Court Cases That Should Worry You - Truthdig


The War on Drug Addicts - and Everyone Else
Maya Schenwar, Truthout: "In at least 36 states, Republicans have introduced legislation requiring applicants to public assistance programs - including food stamps, unemployment benefits and heating subsidies - to pass a drug test before receiving help. They're selling it as a route to kill two societal ills with one budget-slashing stone. By erecting barriers to aid for all (and denying it to needy people suffering from addiction), these lawmakers claim they'll ameliorate both drug problems and economic hardship."
Read the Article

Kim Jong-il's Enigmatic Young Son Steps Forward, or Seems To
Martin Fackler, The New York Times News Service: "The only precedent is the last transition in the current ruling dynasty, when Kim Jong-il took over after the 1994 death of his father, Kim Il-sung. In that case, the son observed a three-year period of traditional mourning before formally taking over control of the nation, a move that reflects the regime's odd mixing of the trappings of ancient Confucian monarchy with a 20th-century Stalinist cult of personality."
Read the Article

Extension of Tax Cut Stalls in House as GOP Objects
Jennifer Steinhauer, The New York Times News Service: "The deal slid off the rails abruptly on Saturday, just hours after the Senate vote, when House Republicans balked after being briefed about the terms by their leaders. Even a sweetener provision to speed the decision process for construction of an oil pipeline from Canada to the Gulf Coast could not mollify them. Mr. Boehner had called the provision a 'victory.'"
Read the Article

Occupy Climate Change: Anjali Appadurai Says, "Get It Done"
J.A. Myerson, Truthout: "She took the opportunity to tell them, 'Now is not the time for incremental action. In the long run, these will be seen as the defining moments of an era in which narrow self-interest prevailed over science, reason and common compassion.' That might have been radical enough, but upon finishing, Appadurai stepped away from the microphone up to the apron of the stage and shouted, 'Mic check!'"
Read the Article

On the News With Thom Hartmann: The Tea Party Clown Show (Video)
In today's On the News segment: What the troops are coming home to after Iraq, GOP pollsters on the edge in Iowa, Occupy Wall Street marks its three-month anniversary, new record set for lightbulb eating and more.
Watch the Video and Read the Transcript

Jim Hightower | Missoula's Supremely Important Vote
Jim Hightower, OtherWords: "Meanwhile, the national media paid no attention to another 'personhood' vote that took place on that same day. This was a referendum in Missoula, Montana, on a concept even more bizarre than declaring zygotes to be persons with full citizenship rights. It was a vote on overturning last year's democracy-killing decision by the US Supreme Court in the now-infamous Citizens United case."
Read the Article

Noam Chomsky | The US-Afghanistan Strategic Partnership Agreement Is "Part of a Global Program of World Militarization"
Noam Chomsky and the Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers, Waging Nonviolence: "My own feeling is that the most important consequence of the very significant peace efforts that are underway inside Afghanistan might well be to stimulate popular movements in the West through just people to people contact, which would help impose pressures on the United States, and particularly Britain, to end the military phase of this conflict and move towards what ought to be done: peaceful settlement and honest, realistic economic development."
Read the Article

Without Autopsies, Hospitals Bury Their Mistakes
Marshall Allen, ProPublica: "As Royak-Schaler's husband, Jeffrey Schaler, discovered, even sudden unexpected deaths do not trigger postmortem reviews. Hospitals are not required to offer or perform autopsies. Insurers don't pay for them. Some facilities and doctors shy away from them, fearing they may reveal malpractice. The downward trend is well-known - it's been studied for years."
Read the Article

If We Listened to the Pundits, We Would Still Be British Subjects
David Gespass, Truthout: "Why, then, are similar protests in this country, inspired in many ways by the events in Tahrir Square, not similarly defended by the government? The right to protest is not dependent on the degree of oppressiveness of the government. It is a fundamental human right that cannot be limited without damage to the entire body politic."
Read the Article

The Cowardly Senator Wyden: Casting His Lot With Paul Ryan on Health Care
Dean Baker, Truthout: "A genuinely courageous senator from Oregon might stand up and suggest ways to get our payments more in line with the rest of the world. But some of the main beneficiaries of these overpayments are in the 1 percent. They are not interested in a solution to our health care cost problem that will reduce their income."
Read the Article
Click here for more Truthout articles

How would you vote on this constitutional amendment?

Amendment to the US Constitution: Any Tea Party Member Over 65 Who Denounces "Obama Socialism," But Threatens the Government "Not to Touch My Medicare" Should Immediately be Removed From Medicare and Placed Into "NewtCare."
Preposterous, ludicrous, unlawful?
Yes, such an amendment to the Constitution would be all of the above.
But polling of the GOP right wing this year has shown about 70 percent or more of likely Republican voters support alternative realities that are no less absurd.
The strict constructionist wing of the Republican party has shown its fidelity to the nation's founding legal document by proposing more amendments to change the Constitution than you can shake a stick at.
Now, Newt Gingrich is running on a platform that includes a promise to defy Supreme Court decisions that he disagrees with should he become president. The Los Angeles Times reports:
Newt Gingrich says as president he would ignore Supreme Court decisions that conflicted with his powers as commander in chief, and he would press for impeaching judges or even abolishing certain courts if he disagreed with their rulings.
"I'm fed up with elitist judges" who seek to impose their "radically un-American" views, Gingrich said Saturday in a conference call with reporters.
Of course, true to the nature of this year's GOP cavalcade of narcissistic hypocrisy, Gingrich sidestepped a question about healthcare reform that hinted at the reality of his campaign of public policy molotov cocktails mixed with high-octane ego and ubiquitous double standards. According to the LA Times:
But the former House speaker demurred when asked whether President Obama could ignore a high court ruling next year if it declared unconstitutional the new healthcare law and its mandate that all Americans have health insurance by 2014.
Perhaps the best alternative is to let all the seniors on Medicare who are "anti-socialist-medicine" use "RonPaulCare" instead. It was at a September Republican debate that CNN's Wolf Blitzer pinned Paul down on what should happen to a young man without health insurance in dire medical need:
"But he doesn't have that [insurance]," Blitzer said. "He doesn't have it and he's - and he needs - he needs intensive care for six months. Who pays?"
"That's what freedom is all about: taking your own risks," Paul said, repeating the standard libertarian view as some in the audience cheered.
"But Congressman, are you saying that society should just let him die?" Blitzer asked.
"Yeah," came the shout from the audience.
Yes, "PaulCare" it is for Republican seniors who want to get rid of "socialized medicine." No Medicare for that group. Give them the medicine that they advocate: no care.
That might return this alternate-universe voting bloc to some semblance of reality.
Mark Karlin,
Editor of BuzzFlash at Truthout
Fortune 500 CEOs See Average Pay Rise 36.5 Percent in 2010, While Report Indicates 1 of Every 2 Americans in or Near Poverty
Read the Article at BuzzFlash
Freedom Riders Return to Alabama
Read the Article at MSNBC
Payroll Tax Cut Extension in Doubt Amid House Republican Uproar
Read the Article at The Washington Post
Occupy the New Year
Read the Article at BuzzFlash
Inside The 1 Percent's Texas Enclave
Read the Article at Mother Jones
As US Troops Exit, Iraq's Political Crisis Deepens
Read the Article at McClatchy Newspapers
Newt Gingrich Would Send US Marshals to Arrest "Activist" Judges
Read the Article at ThinkProgress
Click here for more BuzzFlash headlines

The War on Drug Addicts - and Everyone Else | Truthout

The War on Drug Addicts - and Everyone Else | Truthout

Monday, January 9, 2012

Government entities For those of you that have an interest in seeing the "collective" totals of "local" governments in your State the data can be viewed here - General purpose totals are 89,476 and special purpose 50,432 totaling 139,908 distinct and separate "local" government entities, each with their own investments and assets. Collective totals of the wealth held by all would dwarf the imagination. When you include Federal and the smaller local not accounted for the total verges on 184,000 entities. Sent FYI from, Walter Burien - CAFR1 P. O. Box 2112 Saint Johns, AZ 85936

Zeitgeist movement

Dear Friends,

In the wake of the old year turning into the new, we find ourselves with a
world unchanged. Or has it? The tremendous effort put out by individuals
yourselves alike has had an impact and here is why!
Peter Joseph talks 'The Zeitgeist Movement' with Joe Rogan - January 6, 2012

Friday, January 6, 2012

Jim Hightower

Organize for 2012

Thursday, January 5, 2012   |   Posted by Jim Hightower
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At last, a New Year cometh! I say "at last" because, politically, 2011 was a rough ride.
Let me just mention a few of the bigger bumps: non-stop Congressional gridlock, Donnie... [read more]

Repeal the farce of "Corporate Personhood"

Wednesday, January 4, 2012   |   Posted by Jim Hightower
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The Powers That Be constantly try to pull the wool over people's eyes, but sometimes the wool blinders are so itchy that people rip them off and clearly see the scam.
... [read more]

Shoveling America's wealth to the top

Tuesday, January 3, 2012   |   Posted by Jim Hightower
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As an old country saying puts it, "Money is like manure - it does no good unless you spread it around."
Yet, America's corporate and political leaders have intentionally been... [read more]

Declare independence from corporate power!

Monday, January 2, 2012   |   Posted by Jim Hightower
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A year from now, Americans will be caught in an unprecedented blizzard of campaign ads.
Most of this ad blizzard will not come from the candidates, but from ads secretly-funded... [read more]

Gifts that really do keep giving

Friday, December 30, 2011   |   Posted by Jim Hightower
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I have finally mastered the art of finding perfect gifts for people on my list - gifts that rise above crass commercialism and are genuinely appreciated by the people who receive them. I whole-heartedly recommend... [read more]