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Gender: Male
Current location: Potlandia
Member since: Fri Sep 28, 2007, 04:39 PM
Number of posts: 10,815

Journal Archives

We no longer have any real rights, only privileges at the whim of our corporate overlords.

And we never know how or when said privileges will be revoked;
they could ALL be revoked literally in the twinkling of an eye, (like
how suddenly 911 happened) ... or gradually as needed, modulated
so the whole enchelada doesn't blow up in the 1%'s face .. like was
starting to happen with Occupy Wall St..

Just sayin'. Happy Trails .. It's been nice to know you.

Peace out.

The Fix is in at National Public Radio on SS & Medicare cuts

I was listening to NPR while on a recent road trip, but I don't remember
the exact program. It was a witty, urbane, hour-long hodge podge of
music, poetry, skits and political commentary, aired during the day.

The anchor introduced a guy they said was the "past administrator for
Social Security Administration who is also a poet"; saying that he had
a poem to share, but first he has this to say, "Obama is doing the right
thing regarding SS and Medicare, and he won't be hurt politically by
supporting the chained CPI"; then later he shared a 4 line mediocre
haiku poem he'd penned. I couldn't believe my ears.

Not that I am under any illusions about NPR still being "progressive" but
still, it was the slick easy insertion of this guy into a radio program so
obviously aimed at intellectuals and hipsters that was stunning to me,
like they were slipping a mickey into my drink, hoping I didn't notice.

Perhaps this is WHY Kucinich calls Wash DC a "Punch & Judy Show": The 1% Bug-Out Plan

Can we say "Global Neo-Fuedalism" yet?

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

The 1% Bug-Out Plan: Why Third-World Billionaires Are Buying Fortresses in London, New York and Miami

Preparing for economic and political collapse requires survivalist strategies for new elite.

A recent article from Vanity Fair paints a curious picture of London’s well-heeled Knightsbridge, a neighborhood of quaint Victorian houses and elegant hotels serving high tea. Today, a ginormous complex of concrete and metal towers looms above; a development some call the world’s most exclusive address. Though London has long been a place where the cops don’t even carry guns, security is the watchword at One Hyde Park: high-tech panic rooms, bulletproof glass and “bowler-hatted guards trained by British Special Forces” offer residents the promise of perfect safety and privacy in luxurious surroundings.

Only, nobody really lives there. At night, the building is nearly pitch-dark despite the fact that most of the units have been sold.

The story of who bought these apartments and why reveals the complex dynamics of a tectonic economic shift that is creating a bumper crop of billionaires in the Third World as the austerity-strapped First World stagnates. This year, Forbes magazine’sannual list of billionaires included the first recorded in Angola, Nepal, Swaziland and Vietnam. Japan, once second in the number of billionaires, has been left behind by Russia and China. Europe long boasted the most billionaires after the U.S. but the Asia-Pacific region has taken off and may soon leave Europe in the dust. Today it is home to 386 10-figure fortunes (a decade ago, there were only 61). The world’s wealthiest person is a Mexican telecom mogul, Carlos Slim.


White House Arrests Anti-GMO Activist for Delivering Petitions to Label GMOs

This is downright embarrassing.
What little is left of the Left, is being actively
muzzled and criminalized by the Obama White House.

Another broken promise


Who knew that Alexis Badden Mayer of the Organic Consumers Association would be arrested outside the White House when she attempted to deliver a DVD Petition with over 200,000 names asking Michelle Obama to ask her husband to fulfill a campaign promise to label GMO food products?

There is no more basic American right, than to petition the government, to speak up and have your voice heard as a citizen by your elected representatives – but not if you don’t have the money to buy access to officials who have become more responsive to the interest groups that finance their elections then the people who elected them. And so it was with the petition that called for the truthful labeling of foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs). People want to know what they are eating and want food labeling to indicate if the food has been genetically modified.

Video is included at this link: http://www.occupymonsanto360.org/2013/03/02/white-house-arrests-gmo-petitioner/

N. Korea going off the deep end? Rockets "On Alert" to strike US military bases.

This can't be good news. When nations act like this, nothing good ever
comes of it. WTF are they thinking? They seem to be inviting a "preemptive
attack", by the US and/or S. Korea. It's just stupid. How can people be
so damned idiotic, when there are so many things that can "go wrong" when
tensions are ramped up like this. Not that the US is completely innocent of
escalating things, but still. I find this development very troubling.

North Korea Rockets On Standby To Hit U.S. Bases On Kim Jong Un's Orders, KCNA Reports
Reuters | Posted: 03/28/2013 7:16 pm EDT | Updated: 03/28/2013 10:10 pm EDT

By David Chance and Phil Stewart

SEOUL/WASHINGTON, March 29 (Reuters) - North Korea put its rocket units on standby on Friday to attack U.S. military bases in South Korea and the Pacific, after the United States flew two nuclear-capable stealth bombers over the Korean peninsula in a rare show of force.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un signed off on the order at a midnight meeting of top generals and "judged the time has come to settle accounts with the U.S. imperialists in view of the prevailing situation", official KCNA news agency said.

On Thursday, the United States flew two radar-evading B-2 Spirit bombers on practice runs over South Korea, responding to a series of North Korean threats. They flew from the United States and back in what appeared to be the first exercise of its kind, designed to show America's ability to conduct long-range, precision strikes "quickly and at will", the U.S. military said.

The news of Kim's response was unusually swift.

"He finally signed the plan on technical preparations of strategic rockets of the KPA, ordering them to be standby for fire so that they may strike any time the U.S. mainland, its military bases in the operational theaters in the Pacific, including Hawaii and Guam, and those in south Korea," KCNA said.


Until Workers Own Their Jobs, We're Only Rearranging Titanic's deck chairs - this IS the rEvolution

Do yourself a favor and please watch this video, of Richard Wolff, economics Professor
at Amherst & Yale, lay out passionate & lucid logic for doing the obvious, to take care of
ourselves, to exercise much ballyhooed "democracy" in our own economic life, by simply
taking one huge clearheaded step OUT of the capital v. labor box, the box where workers
endure an increasingly frequent and pathetic string of defeats via "collective bargaining"
motif, which we all blithely assume to be set in concrete.

I mean really, "what's the alternative?" you ask?
HERE is the answer ---->

Here's a cross post from Video & Multimedia Forum, of an interview with Professor Fred
Freundlich another well-informed advocate for worker ownership as a massive corporate
paradigm shift, which could be easily facilitated through the tax incentives.

Worker ownership literally WAS the original labor movement in the USA, rather than
collective bargaining motif, which hasn't worked out so well over the long haul, which
has led to outsourcing, downsizing, and all manner of anti-worker laws being passed.
Fuck 'em. Labor needs to use what influence and recourses it still has managed to hold
onto, and just buy-out and own the freaking factory, using well-known, tried and true
methodologies and models that have been around for over a century.
This is what the Labor Movement was pretty much ALL ABOUT in the late 1800's and
during 1900s, until they dumped all their eggs into the collective bargaining basket in
early 20th century in the US.

In addition to the Labor Movement, there are ALREADY national associations, a network
of technical assistance consultants and capital investors, etc. that can be built upon

Here's a rather amusing piece by Gar Alperovitz about how profoundly UNinterested the Wall
Street Journal is in shedding light on the worker ownership option, which should be a clue.

So here's the BOTTOM LINE: Why in the fuck are we not doing this? And doing it full-bore
on a grand scale, to invest & focus our collective attention and energy and resources in a way
where we REALLY can make a historic and substantial difference to heal the economy and
rebuild a stable Middle Class. Compared to this notion, everything else is just tinkering or
kicking the can down the road, a road leading straight into a draconian neo-feudal dystopian

I can think of no better rEvolutionary idea in which to invest, to focus, to spread the word
about, to apply pressure on politicians to align themselves with, and support worker owned
enterprises in every conceivable and legal way.

If we don't do this, we no longer have any excuses left to lean on, to comfort ourselves. We
can't say down the road that we didn't know what to do, because THIS IS THE FUTURE, if there
is a future where workers are paid a living wage and are valued for the work they do because
once ALL workers fucking OWN their jobs, no one can take their livelihood away from them
again, or destroy their community by outsourcing, etc. ... not ever. We will have awakened
from our nightmare, and taken charge of our collective economic welfare.

Richard Wolff - author of Democacy at Work, is onto this as well

I've been advocating this ever since the mid 80s, when I did my masters
thesis on examining the relative performance of 1) absentee owned, 2)
locally (w/in 50 miles owner lives), and 3) WORKER-OWNED businesses.
Both in terms of employment stability, rate of pay, and the amount of
profits that STAY in the LOCAL economy to turn over again and again,
worker ownership was THE most effective model.

Here's Richard Wolff:

We are at a juncture in History where Labor needs to make an abrupt LEFT hand
turn on a dime, to focus like a laser beam primarily on leveraging worker buyouts
of "distressed" business (the ones that vultures like Bain Capital prey upon); and
secondarily focus on both retaining extant collective bargaining contracts and on
incubating and supporting worker-owned startup businesses.

The workers can take back what's been stolen, but this is the ONLY means by which
they can; because history illustrates clearly that at the end of the day OWNERSHIP
is EVERYTHING, i.e. including that it ultimately trumps any collective bargaining
"victories" of the past, before the 1% figured out how to buy off 1/2 of the workers
to begger and bugger the other 1/2.


WTF? Ezra Klein is blaming "old people" for deficit

Has Mr. Klein been swilling Tea Party KoolAid on the sly? This is disgusting.
The entire tone of this article is chillingly ageist and hugely misleading.

To try to cover his heartless ass, Klein even admits in the fine print at end of
article that rising health care costs ARE indeed a huge problem, after spending
the entire article torturing and tweaking data suggesting otherwise; i.e. laying
the blame squarely at the feet of US having "too many old people".

What does Mr. Klein suggest we do about having too many "old people"?
Either he's setting the stage for euthanizing everyone over 70, OR he's simply
blowing rainbows up the ass of the 1%, giving them cover for cutting SS and
Medicare benefits. Either way, it's a very ugly picture.


PS - to see his graphs, you'll need to use the link, as they didn't copy/paste
with the text.

Our coming deficits are driven by old people, not health inflation
by Ezra Klein * March 20, 2013

You’ve heard — perhaps on this very blog! — that our long-term deficits are almost entirely driven by health-care costs. That’s true over the next 50, 60, 70 years, which is, absurdly, the time frame people often talk in. But over the next 20 years, it’s not quite right.

A more accurate way to put it would be that in the coming decades, new spending is almost entirely driven by health-care programs. But what’s really driving the spending in those programs is the aging of the population, not the rise in health-care costs. Over at the Concord Coalition’s blog, Joshua Gordon makes this point in an unusually clear way — by which I mean, of course, with graphs.

Here’s a breakdown of new spending by program between 2012 and 2037. As you can see, Medicare and Medicaid far outpace Social Security, and all programs that are not Medicare, Medicaid or Social Security are expected to shrink as a percentage of the economy:

There are two reasons health-care programs could be spending more. One is that health-care costs are going up. The other is that more people are using them. We typically talk about the problem as if the problem is rising costs. But over the next 20 years, the cost increases are driven by more people.

Sequestration is working!!!

... i.e. it's doing what GOP knew it would do, kill jobs and bugger the
US economy so they can "blame Obama" for it, and the Democratic
party by implication.

Workers Lose Jobs As Pink Slips Go Out Due To Sequestration

Has Meta gone tits-up? ~nt

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