Thursday, May 15, 2014

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Postcard from the End of America: Manhattan

by Linh Dinh / May 5th, 2014
Getting off the Greyhound bus at the Port Authority Terminal, I immediately saw a man in his mid 50′s digging through a garbage can. With his right hand, he held a plastic tray on which were placed whatever edible scraps he could find. Lickable flecks clung to his ample brown beard. Chewing while scavenging, he was quite leisurely with his task and no one among the many people sitting or standing nearby paid him any attention. Done with one trash can, he moved to the next, and since there were so many in this huge building, I imagined his daily buffet to be quite ample and varied.
Like central libraries, bus stations are daytime havens for America’s homeless, but the man described above is a throw back of sort, for his number has dwindled considerably ever since Giuliani decided to hose most of them away. Los Angeles has its Skid Row, San Francisco the Tenderloin, and you can find hundreds of roofless Americans sprawling all over Northwest DC, the showcase quarter, but much of Manhattan has become quite sanitized, purged of not just the homeless but any other kind of poorer Americans, as well as the artsy, Bohemian types, who have mostly migrated to Brooklyn. Pumped up by Wall Street, much of Manhattan has become off limits to all but the super affluent. You can work there, sure, after taking two trains and a bus, but don’t think of moving in, not even into a closet, or curtained off corner of a roach motel-sized, shared apartment. As the rest of the country sinks, this island is buoyed by bailouts and quantitative easing directly deposited into its too-big-to-fail swindling houses, but hey, the Bangladeshi cab drivers and CUNY-graduated waiters and bellhops also get their short stacks of nickels and dimes, so don’t bitch, OK? Dwelling in this Green Zone, it would be easy to think that this country’s near collapse is but a ridiculous rumor.
Speaking of Gotham cabbies, only 8% are native-born these days, and pointing to this fact, Pat Buchanan blames the liberal welfare state for the decline of the American work ethics. What he ignores is that the terms for driving a cab in New York are so bad, even many Pakistani immigrants have stopped driving. Instead of pocketing a share of each fare, most drivers must rent their vehicle at a fixed rate, so that they may even lose money at the end of a 12-hour shift. Thanks to an increasingly superfluous supply of labor, however, you can always get someone to do anything, and this is the direct result of having a porous border in a sinking economy. Globalism is not just about exporting decent jobs, but also importing cheap labor until everyone everywhere makes just about nothing. That’s the master plan, dude, so although ningĂșn ser humano es ilegal is self-evidently true, it’s also a smoke screen to make slaves out of us all.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Media Pile On

Don Sterling Yes, the Empire NO!
by Phillip Faruggio / May 4th, 2014
Let me preface these new thoughts by stating that what another billionaire says or does because he feels ‘above the rest of we serfs‘ is never surprising to me. What Don Sterling, owner of the Clippers basketball team, said and implied is murmured to this writer many times by many people… always in either whispers or in secure settings. Racism is alive and well in Amerika, as it always has been since our founding. What cracks me up is how much television and radio time is reserved for this latest “major scandal”. One can understand the sports media jumping all over this incident. Yet, even they have devoted too much time in bombarding us with what this man said, past and present. Enough already! Oh, yes! The league is suspending him for life from the game, but… he will keep ownership of his team. But wait! They may push him to sell… for over $500 million for a team he bought for less than $20 million. Poor Don Sterling.

▶ Zero : An Investigation Into 9/11 - YouTube

▶ Zero : An Investigation Into 9/11 - YouTube

Friday, May 2, 2014

Lessons Learned as I Prepare for Retirement

I have looked forward to retiring for years. The idea of having control of my time to do what I want sounds about as good at it gets. As an obsessively organized person who likes to have a bit of control over things, I am not comfortable adopting a wait and see attitude, especially when it comes to something as important as planning for my retired life. I don't want to let retirement just happen. I want to do what I can to provide for the best second act possible.
About four years ago I began seriously researching retirement. I visited popular websites, read books, subscribed to newsletters and joined AARP in an effort to get a better handle on what was ahead. During the process I created a blog to share my discoveries and get feedback from those navigating their own personal retirement journey. What I have learned has caused me to adjust some of my initial perceptions and raised my optimism for the future.

Friday, April 25, 2014

14 characteristics of fascism

The 14 Defining Characteristics Of Fascism Dr. Lawrence Britt has examined the fascist regimes of Hitler (Germany), Mussolini (Italy), Franco (Spain), Suharto (Indonesia) and several Latin American regimes. Britt found 14 defining characteristics common to each: 1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism - Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays. 2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights - Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc. 3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause - The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc. 4. Supremacy of the Military - Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized. 5. Rampant Sexism - The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution. 6. Controlled Mass Media - Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common. 7. Obsession with National Security - Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses. 8. Religion and Government are Intertwined - Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's policies or actions. 9. Corporate Power is Protected - The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite. 10. Labor Power is Suppressed - Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed. 11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts - Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked. 12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment - Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations. 13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption - Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders. 14. Fraudulent Elections - Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Postcard from the End of America: Bensalem

by Linh Dinh / April 20th, 2014

When I told my friend, Anwar, of my plan to traverse Bensalem by foot, he laughed, “You can’t even walk there. There are no sidewalks!” Though this is not quite true, I did find myself mostly schlepping on edges of roads or people’s lawns. To not get splattered by SUVs, sometimes I had to hop puddles or even step in mud. Covering twenty miles over two days, the only other pedestrians I encountered was a Mexican immigrant, a few derelict types, perhaps homeless, and a well-tattooed teen couple with bad skin and wearing black T-shirts. Since I didn’t chatter with them, I can’t tell you if they were going to their meth dealer, the Wawa or a bible study group.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Bus driver ticketed after woman hit leaving bus at Alameda and Sheridan in Denver - 7NEWS Denver

Bus driver ticketed after woman hit leaving bus at Alameda and Sheridan in Denver - 7NEWS Denver

Indigenous/Native American/First Nations America's Great Indian Nations Full Film

Indigenous/Native American/First Nations America's Great Indian Nations Full Film

UFOs/Interdimensional/Ultraterrestrials UFO in the Radar Readings of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370

UFOs/Interdimensional/Ultraterrestrials UFO in the Radar Readings of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370

The Odyssey of flight 33

This episode of the legendary early-1960s
American TV series, Rod Serling's 'The
Twilight Zone' was brought to my attention
by a friend and a subscriber to FKTV, as
the strangeness of the fictional plane's
journey portrayed in this episode reminded
her of the ever-changing story, re-hashed by
the Criminal Mainstream Media, as to the
ultimate fate of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370,
en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing several
days ago, with the plane's whereabouts still
remaining "officially unknown".

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Postcard from the End of America: Chicago

by Linh Dinh / March 10th, 2014
I’ve been coming to Chicago forever, but always just for a day or two. The first time was when I was only a teenager and visiting an aunt in St Louis. Another time, it was to take a physical exam for now-defunct Midway Airlines. I was trying to get a job as a baggage handler. The day before, though, I had been at a Philly party where someone handed me a joint. Never one to refuse heartfelt hospitality, I inhaled, but somehow this didn’t prevent me from being hired by Midway. Perhaps they used the same urinalyst, piss parser or golden shower technician as Major Leagues Baseball, you know, the one that kept clearing Sammy Sosa even as he hit, like, 600 home runs in one season. In any case, I never took that Midway job, for I had found another while waiting for their decision. Back in the late 80s, it was that easy to find work, so even a no-skill, no-degreed, beer swilling and, occasionally, very occasionally, actually, pot smoking, coke inhaling or acid dropping bum like me could pick and choose. If you could lift stuff, no matter how awkwardly, you were hired.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Retirement -- The New American Luxury

America has always invented its own status symbols. A lifetime ago, status was being a two-car family or having air conditioning. A decade ago, it was huge houses with three-car garages. There was a time only the rich went on cruises, a status symbol whose cachet is long gone. Just like designer clothes and handbags, the aspirational aspects of American life have long been available to the masses.
But there's one luxury that only a few are still able to afford. And unlike fake designer purses, this luxury cannot be made in China and distributed to a vast group of demanding consumers.
That luxury is retirement.
And only a select few will be able to enjoy the reality of a life-ending decade or two, spent relaxing and pursuing hobbies. Retirement is truly the last exclusive luxury, increasingly available to only a limited group of people — a true status symbol.