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HughBeaumont

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Member since: Fri Aug 13, 2004, 03:12 PM
Number of posts: 21,235

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You'll love this interview. Most hilarious 49 minutes you'll spend.

http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/saturday/20111022

If there were ever a definition of "uncomfortable", it's Thomas "Milton" Friedman trying to bob-and-weave his way out of an actual journalist's questioning of his flimsy, overassumptive theories that he learned from "random chai wallahs while waiting for his plane in the Dehli airport", or something along those lines. Among the things you learn from Tommy's squirm-a-thon:

* It's either live with what we have or North Korea/Totalitarianism, and there is no in-between, fairer economic happy medium anywhere in the world that has any kind of success.

* Don't shoot the messenger.

* He really . . . REALLLLLLLLLLY doesn't like his personal wealth being called out.

* We're not in Kansas anymore.

* He's never heard of the word "neo-liberal".

* Tommy's a tad blind to pachyderms inside rooms.

* We need balance and cooperation (and hey, while we're throwing out pipe dreams, I want a new car).

* Our economy is NOT zero-sum and Americans AREN'T losing their jobs when third world nations are lifted out of poverty.

* Anyone who questions him has an "agenda".

No, Thomas. What you just experienced is called "Objective JOURNALISM". You want softball-lobbing Trickle-down fawning, go on CNBC.

36 Sure Fire Signs . . .: Written in 2007, How Much of It Still Sadly Applies Today?

http://www.commondreams.org/views07/0202-26.htm

Some snippets . . .

You know your empire's crumbling when just about your entire military land force is tied up in a worse-than-useless war launched on the basis of complete fabrications, that every day is actually making you less - not more - secure from external threat.

You know your empire's crumbling when almost half the soldiers in that war are high-paid mercenaries, and you don't dare institute a draft.

snip

You know your empire's crumbling when a member of the Axis of Evil can test missiles and explode nuclear warheads, and all you can do about it is mumble some pathetic warnings about how they better not do that again or there will be consequences.

You know your empire's crumbling when you even think that there is an Axis of Evil.

You know your empire's crumbling when a rag-tag military hodge-podge of irregulars has you pinned down in an endless fight you can't win, but also can't lose.

snip

You know your empire's crumbling when you're the richest country in the world, but nearly 50 million of your people don't have basic health care coverage.

You know your empire's crumbling when the World Health Organization ranks your healthcare system 37th best in the world, just above Slovenia, and just below Costa Rica. (And far below Colombia, Cyprus, Saudi Arabia and Morocco.)

You know your empire's crumbling when instead of making it easier for citizens to obtain a higher education, you're making it harder and more expensive.

You know your empire's crumbling when your government gives tax breaks to industries as a reward for exporting your jobs elsewhere.

snip

You know your empire's crumbling when your middle class has been stagnant for three decades, while the wealth of the hyper-rich continues to climb through the roof.

snip

You know your empire's crumbling when the predatory class has taken over your government and is stripping the country of everything not bolted down to the floor. And then it sells the floor itself, as well, to your rivals.

snip

You know your empire's crumbling when gays and immigrants are used as diversionary issues to keep people from thinking about the pillaging of their country and their wallets actually taking place. And it works.

You know your empire's crumbling when people are getting more religious and less scientific, not the other way around.


Have we learned absolutely NOTHING? Will we EVER? I don't have to ask will THEY ever learn, since, you know, "they got theirs" and learning from mistakes they don't even know or care that they're making isn't really part or parcel in their bubbles.

Must be nice to be able to relegate a planet to a scorched Earth, piecemeal, dumpster scrap, shipping-crate-home future. Greed is a hereditary plague that we're all going to pay dearly for.

1. Treat Horatio Alger as "pie-in-the-sky" and not "The Rule".

2. Get it instilled that making a living with a living wage, a pension and stability is far more fruitful in the long run than "get-rich-quick" and a more probable and reasonable solution than relying on "STARTYEROWNBUSINESS/BEYEROWNBOSS!" as the cure-all for America's chronic joblessness.

3. ACE Marty Feldstein's HBS Laissez-Fail CRAP from our business schools. The reason corporations are ruthless and uncaring is because this little bastard's right-wing teachings have been poisoning student's minds since the 1980s and they go on to RUN these corporations . . . into the ground. We're creating a generation of short-term, profit-happy Hank Kravises, Michael Milkens, Lloyd Bankfiends and Jamie Dimons and it's KILLING us.

4. Guaranteed basic income combined with maximum wage. Nobody NEEDS more than a billion dollars when there are people with degrees fighting for former high-schooler jobs.

5. Universal Health Care.

6. End ridiculously expensive and painfully useless folly wars and have the military help rebuild our badly crumbling infrastructure. I can't think of a better plan for national security than that.

7. Shore up public transportation to European standards and get some goddamned high speed RAIL in this country.

8. Reinstate Glass-Stegall.

9. Reinstate The Fairness Doctrine.

10. Equal rights for all humans.

This is in no particular order, but it's a start.
Posted by HughBeaumont | Mon Apr 8, 2013, 03:41 PM (1 replies)

Herein lies the problem . . .

Now that it's a given that we have two parties that are pretty much only divided by social issues and the third parties are either
* well-funded, 1%er-friendly Republicans who own bongs (Libertarians) or
* a group that has approximately zero financial backing, zero media support, almost zero governmental representation and, unfortunately, very little support among mainstream America (progressives),

. . . what exactly do we DO?

A. Where would we head?

Washington, where nearly everyone is purchased, or sit-ins at corporate offices, which are in various locations across the country? And what would Washington do? This problem is a long-standing and complex one largely caused by two elements: Big (name industry here) and their lobbyists and 32 straight years of Friedmanomics practiced by Repubs in both parties. It affects nearly everything from elections to environmental policy to public policy.

Our still-Republican-controlled Congress and over-filibustering Senate leaves us kind of helpless in this matter. Other than a small handful of Sherrod Browns and Elizabeth Warrens and Bernie Sanders, our government has proven they're really not interested in taking corporations and their leaders to task and many are willing to make life even easier for them, hard as that is to fathom. I'm finding more and more each election cycle that, economically, there is NO OPTION.

B. Who'll broadcast it without casting a smarmy, sneering eye?

News anchors are, by and large, one-percenters hired by the one-percent of the one percenters, and we have arguably the most conservative, corporate-controlled media among industrialized nations. Exhibit A: Erin Burnett and half of her CNN co-horts. Exhibits B and C: nearly every anchor on Faux and CNBC. Exhibit D: Morning Joke.

Like it or not, Cable News, Inc. is still influential. In the age of the internet, cable news and its opinionated anchors should be fossilized. Yet people still watch it. Yet it's ubiquitous . . . how many times do you see Rupert Murdoch's garbage channel on in dentist's & doctor's offices, hospital waiting rooms, bars, restaurants, auto repair places, etc?

C. Who'd be able to participate in a protest for even one day, let alone several?

I think the greatest reason why Americans don't/can't protest is also one of the greatest reasons for it's vast inequality: No Universal Health Care. You cannot risk losing your job primarily because there are so few good jobs to be had and losing insurance means having to buy it on your own; ask anyone who does, any small business owner how costly that is. On the other hand, if we HAD Universal Health Care, it'd be an employEEs market and corporations know this. How many people can't start their own businesses due to health insurance costs? How badly are wages being suppressed because of health insurance costs?

D. Who'd listen?

I'm willing to bet nearly half of America clings to this Horatio Alger myth and this "American Dream" crap; both of which have largely been lost thanks to corporatization, free trade and suppressed real-dollar wages. But, thanks to reason "B" above, they're still hypnotized into believing it even though it's painfully evident that economic mobility in America is worse than any time in the modern era. They're still in absolutist "It's either THIS or SOSHULISM" mode, not even accepting that there could be a happy medium.

I would love, LOVE to participate in a march on the important issue of worker rights and think it's far overdue; I'm just wondering, with all of the venom directed towards the Occupy movement (even among supposed Democrats), how effective it would be and how it would happen.

Let me ask you something regarding villain CEOs:

Warren Buffett aside, have you ever known a billionaire NOT compelled to say something completely douchebaggish and straight off of a Fox News cue card when put in front of a camera?

Like, do any of them say -

"All I can tell you is try, give it your best shot, don't be afraid to ask for help and help your fellow human being when he or she has fallen on hard times. After all, everyone who is where I'm at asked for help along the way."

as opposed to -

"I'M THE GREATEST, SMARTEST AND HARDEST WORKING FUCKER ON THIS PLANET AND GOT THIS SHIT COMPLETELY ON MY OWN WITH NO HELP FROM ANYONE! OH AND I'M LAYING OFF 20,000 OF YOU USELESS COMMIE EATERS SO YOU CAN PLAY SOCIALISM WITH YOUR MARXIST PRESIDENT AND I'M GOING TO BUY THE NEXT ELECTION BECAUSE I CAN!!!"

These guys make more money per week than most people will see in their entire lives.

What's in it for them to be SUCH DICKS?? It's almost as if they're smugly mocking us and they just don't care that they are.

Latest Onion: Where Satire Ends and Crying At the Cold Truth of it All Begins.

http://www.theonion.com/articles/find-the-thing-youre-most-passionate-about-then-do,31742/

I have always been a big proponent of following your heart and doing exactly what you want to do. It sounds so simple, right? But there are people who spend years—decades, even—trying to find a true sense of purpose for themselves. My advice? Just find the thing you enjoy doing more than anything else, your one true passion, and do it for the rest of your life on nights and weekends when you’re exhausted and cranky and just want to go to bed.

snip

Say, for example, that your passion is painting. Well, what are you waiting for? Get out there and buy a canvas and some painting supplies! Go sign up for art classes! And when you get so overwhelmed with your job and your personal life that you barely have enough time to see your girlfriend or boyfriend or husband or wife, let alone do anything else, go ahead and skip classes for a few weeks. Then let those paint brushes sit in your room untouched for six months because a major work project came up and you had a bunch of weddings to go to and your kid got sick and money is tighter than you thought it would be and you have to work overtime. And then finally pick those brushes back up again only to realize you’re so rusty that you begin to question whether this was all a giant waste of time, whether you even want to paint anymore, and whether this was just some sort of immature little fantasy you had as a kid and that maybe it’s finally time to grow the fuck up, let painting go, and join the real world because, let’s face it, not everyone gets to live out their dreams.

Not only does that sound fulfilling, but it also sounds pretty fun.

Really, the biggest obstacle to overcome here—aside from every single obligation you have to your friends, family, job, and financial future—is you. And I’ll tell you this much: You don’t want to wake up in 10 years and think to yourself, “What if I had just gone after my dreams during those brief 30-minute lunch breaks when I was younger?” Because even if it doesn’t work out, don’t you owe it to yourself to look in the mirror and confidently say, “You know what, I gave it my best half-hearted shot”?


I really cannot laugh at this because it just hits too close to home. "Do What You Love and The Money Will Follow" is the biggest crock of horseshit ever sold to people.

When Napalm Death meets MSNBC, all is right in the world:



http://entertainment.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/03/20/17385786-london-museum-cancels-heavy-metal-gig-fearing-noise-damage?lite

LONDON -- London's famed Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) has canceled an experimental concert by extreme metal band Napalm Death, fearing the noise level could damage the 104-year-old building.

Ceramic artist Keith Harrison from the V&A, the world's largest museum of decorative arts and design, collaborated with Napalm Death on a set to be played through a sculptural sound system which would disintegrate under decibel stress.

But museum officials said the one-off performance, scheduled for Friday in the V&A's Europe Galleries, had been canceled out of concern it was not only the intended sculpture that would be damaged.

"A further safety inspection has revealed concerns that the high level of decibels generated by the concert would damage the historic fabric of the building," a museum statement said.

I passed 20,000 posts and didn't even realize it. I hate it when that happens.

Horsey: America's Paths to the Top . . .



The "Wealthy", of course, are already on the top floor.

Did you know that Russia, China and Cuba control the American media?



Or at least that's what my co-worker, who I thought at one point was semi-rational but now just appears to be driving off the nutjob cliff, thinks. Oh, and that we need more Bob Woodwards in the world.



Take a look at that statement. It's got to be the dumbest thing I've read all day. Possibly all year. Possibly all decade. You couldn't Google such whackjobbery with any tangible results.

What level of paranoia would lead a degreed individual to write something that would come across as too whacked for even the Glenn Beck set?

How would someone even work that out?

I think, and the Romney interview just capped it . . . this is why his party is going straight in the crapper: the lunatics are running the asylum and the rational ones are abandoning it entirely.
Posted by HughBeaumont | Mon Mar 4, 2013, 10:17 AM (4 replies)
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