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Divernan's Journal
Divernan's Journal
November 24, 2013

Warren doesn't have Clinton's tangled web of financial/political payback obligations.

In college Mrs. Clinton was president of the Young Republicans & supported election of several moderate Republicans - John Lindsay, Edward Brooke; interned for Rep. Gerald Ford and the House Republican Conference and campaigned for Nelson Rockefeller. In 1968, when she was 21 and after years of political involvement, she attended the GOP convention in Miami where she was upset by Nixon's dirty tricks campaign attacks on Rockefeller & left the GOP party.

In Carl Bernstein's 2007 book, A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton (Alfred Knopf. ISBN 0-375-40766-9), he quotes from a letter she wrote to her youth minister, "she described herself as "a mind conservative and a heart liberal." (p. 50). Bernstein states she believed this combination was possible and that no equation better describes the adult Hillary Clinton.

I think Bernstein's opinion is valid. However, over the years, her support for liberal issues has become quite muted and taken a very distant back seat to her commitment to the MIC, Big Banking and the other "big" corporate interests which have funded Clinton family activities since Bill left office, to the tune that he now has accumulated a personal wealth of over $50 million dollars, in addition to all the millions "donated" to the Clinton Foundation and funding the very lavish life style the Clintons lead while involved in any remotely connected Foundation activities. Here are headline & sub-headlines of a recent article:

Bill Clinton's charities spent more than $50m on travel expenses in the past decade even though he regularly uses a billionaire pal's private jets. Former President Clinton runs a number of charities under his name that are focused on eradicating world health problems
An internal audit showed that the charities spent more than $50m on travel expenses since 2003, including $12.1m in 2011 alone
Rooting out inefficiencies in time for Hillary to decide whether she is going to run for office in 2016

This article is very detailed with fascinating examples of how the Clinton Foundation threw money donated for charity into expenses like flying a politically active movie star and her dog first class to an event. It also illustrates how the Clintons have failed to separate their non-profit charity from political involvement benefiting GOP candidates:

By using grocery-store magnate John Catsimatitis’ plane for trips- like his recent one with Chelsea to South Africa last month- the charities either pay a discounted rate to Catsimatitis or he writes the expense off as a charitable donation.

Such close ties to the Republican billionaire also shows another reason why the Clintons have been actively staying away from the ongoing New York City mayoral race, as Catsimatitis is running as a Republican against a number of Hillary Clinton’s former colleagues from her days in the Senate- not to mention her longtime aide Huma Abedin’s husband, Anthony Weiner.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2398355/Bill-Clintons-charities-spent-50m-travel-expenses-past-decade-regularly-uses-billionaire-pals-private-jet.html#ixzz2lZEZDaRQ

The Clintons have the most tangled political/financial web of any US political dynasty ever. And all those invisible strings leading back to the corporate "donors" to the Clinton Foundation will be in place and calling the shots if there is another Clinton presidency.

See also:

November 18, 2013

Clinton's campaign song: Let's Do the Time Warp Again!

Try to quote accurate, current numbers/stats, including links, would you PLEASE?

I just caught Rocky Horror Picture Show on cable over Halloween, and your inflated numbers brought to mind this song: Let's Do the Time Warp Again. The world has changed and the web is enlightening people about corporate greed. A lifelong Republican neighbor, with whom I generally avoid any political conversation, spontaneously brought up how frightened she is for her adult kids and young adult grandkids by corporate greed and politicians selling out to corporate interests.


It's just a jump to the left,
and then a step to the right.
Put your hands on your hips;
and bend your knees in tight ...

We need a candidate who appeals to independents and young voters, and Clinton's approval ratings with those 2 groups dropped to 35% and 38% respectively. She couldn't take the primary in 2008 and she's become more identified with corporatist/militarist interests since then. You know it. I know it. Major potential voting blocks know it. The only thing keeping her in the game are the bloated contributions made possible by Citizens United.
November 17, 2013

Squeeze play on Boeing machinists/union is reality elites failed to feel

A column in today's Seattle Times discusses how Boeing's machinist union was let down by WA. Governor Inslee and Senator Murray. Bottom line, record profit-making corporation says give up your pensions and significant part of health care benefits, or we're out of here, and the corporation was cheered on by Washington's governor, senator and other lifetime pensioners holding public office.


Boeing, you get $9 billion. Politicians, you get a “big win” to hail at news conferences. And workers, you get to cancel your pensions. Deal?

Last Sunday I noted how the head of Boeing, Jim McNerney, is set to draw a pension that pays a quarter-million dollars per month. Gov. Inslee, Sen. Murray and the rest of the public officials extolling this deal also have nice, safe pensions. That’s fine, but they ought to know how grating it sounds when this same elite class finds it imperative that workers — and only the workers — should unwind their retirement security.

“I know change can be hard,” Boeing commercial jet president Ray Conner sympathized. Especially when only one party to a deal is being asked to change!

People say the Machinists are blind to how good they have it. Probably so. But be honest: If your boss said to you, “Hey we’re making record profits, and paying ourselves phantasmagorical amounts, but to remain a going concern we must cut your retirement,” how would you react?

November 17, 2013

"More Fun With Bill & Hill" or, w/friends like Bill, who needs enemies? Explosive piece.

A biting examination and analysis of Bill Clinton's motives for his comments re President Obama, published in today's international New York Times edition.


BEFORE President Obama administered his fix to the Affordable Care Act last week and even before it was clear that he was leaning that way, Bill Clinton piped up, opining that Obama should honor his claim that Americans with insurance they liked could keep it. This advice wasn’t exactly solicited. And inasmuch as it gave detractors of Obama and Obamacare a fresh cudgel, it wasn’t terribly helpful, either.
. . . . . . .
You can alternately view what he (Clinton) said as payback. He’s no doubt aware of a widely publicized nugget from the new book “Double Down: Game Change 2012,” which reports that Obama finds him a tad insufferable, the guest who overstays his welcome, and has said that he’s best savored “in doses.” So he gave Obama a dose all right. It was more vinegar than honey, with just the slightest trace of arsenic.
. . . . . .
Or you can view what happened last week in grandly strategic and utterly gallant terms, which is where things really get interesting and which may be the most accurate appraisal of all. Clinton is looking to 2016, and he’s helping Hillary. It’s less dicey for him than for her to second-guess Obama, which could wind up being a prerequisite to succeeding him. His presidency at this particular moment looks more and more like one of those unlucky Florida homes perched unsuspectingly over a sinkhole. Soon only the top of the chimney will be visible.
. . . . . . .
And in precisely the way that he sometimes makes Obama seem tepid, he could outshine Hillary, inadvertently or not. A friend of mine who went to a public event of hers last week was blown away by how not blown away he was. Amid all of the Hillary hullabaloo, he’d forgotten that she’s no dynamo on the stump. Many Democrats overlook this, but not the ones whispering sweet encouragements in Elizabeth Warren’s ear. Part of what they see in Warren — and part of what they believe could make her a spoiler — is a sizzle that doesn’t come as naturally to Hillary.
November 16, 2013

Japan postpones removal of Fukushima atomic fuel rods

Source: Euronews

The operators of the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant have postponed the extremely complicated and difficult task of removing damaged atomic rods.

Kazuaki Matsui, the executive director of Japan’s Institute of Applied Energy said: “It’s very difficult to remove a spent rod because parts of the wall and the bottom of the reactor are all melted. We’ve never had to deal with this before so that adds to the complication.”

Meanwhile, decontamination workers say mismanagement is to blame for the delay of radiation removal work.

The inital plan called for the clean-up in the affected towns to be finished by March this year but the government now says the work will be delayed by as much as three years.

Read more: http://www.euronews.com/2013/11/15/japan-postpones-removal-of-fukushima-atomic-fuel-rods/

Earlier this month a delay of "a couple of weeks" was announced to allow for a "test" removal. At that time, by way of robot video, new leaks were discovered, as well as that one of the fuel assemblies was damaged and bent out of shape. The current delay is apparently indefinite. In other words, nobody's figured out what to do!

Postponed: Fuel removal attempt at Fukushima Unit 4 delayed, possibly for weeks — Gov’t safety agency wants tests conducted, as another ~M5 quake hits Eastern Japan http://enenews.com/postponed-fuel-removal-attempt-at-fukushima-unit-4-delayed-possibly-for-weeks-govt-safety-agency-wants-tests-conducted

The Japan Times, Nov 4, 2013: Tepco to conduct fuel removal test at reactor 4 [...] Tokyo Electric Power Co. will conduct a fuel removal test at the No. 4 reactor building of the stricken Fukushima No. 1 power plant, delaying the start of the actual operation by up to two weeks, sources close to the matter said Monday.

November 16, 2013

Conlin Concedes: Seattle Elects Sawant as First Socialist Councilmember

Source: KUOW-FM, Puget Sound/Seattle radio

Longtime Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin conceded his seat to challenger Kshama Sawant late Friday after Sawant's lead widened to 1,640 votes, or 50.3 percent.

Sawant becomes the first Socialist elected to the city council. Her grassroots campaign focused on a $15 minimum wage, rent control in a city with rising rents, and a millionaires' tax to fund transportation. Sawant has a Ph.D. in economics, and has taught economics at Seattle Central Community College. She's been active in the Occupy Seattle movement.

Sawant ran as a Socialist Alternative. She previously ran unsuccessfully for House Speaker Frank Chopp's seat in 2012. She won 29 percent of the vote in that race, which put her on the map. She had been steadily gaining on Conlin since election night when she trailed by more than 7 percent of the vote.

At City Hall on Friday night, Conlin said it’s not alarming to have a Socialist on the Seattle City Council because “when we think of socialism, we think of Sweden, and that's a pretty good model."

Read more: http://kuow.org/

You go Seattle! Cutting edge again!
November 14, 2013

777X In Danger: Machinists Reject Boeing Contract

Source: KUOW Puget Sound/Seattle

Boeing’s machinists have rejected the company’s proposed contract, with 67 percent of union members opposed.

Members said they are calling the aerospace giant’s bluff – they expect the company to renegotiate the contract deal instead of building the 777X jet somewhere else. At least 20,000 area Boeing jobs are at stake. The vote, which was closely watched by state lawmakers, was about more than just compensation for the 31,000 machinists. Boeing had repeatedly threatened that it would move production of the 777X out of state if the machinists didn't approve the contract.

Under the proposed eight-year contract, Boeing would stop contributing to the machinists’ pensions in 2016, and workers’ health care costs would increase. If the machinists had approved the contract, they would have received a $10,000 bonus by the holidays.

Whether the company was bluffing ahead of the vote was difficult to gauge. The machinists in the Puget Sound region are highly skilled, a fact highlighted by the delays and technical problems that turned the 787 Dreamliner – built in South Carolina – into a public relations nightmare.

Read more: http://kuow.org/post/777x-danger-machinists-reject-boeing-contract

I'm proud of the union members who refused individual bribes/"bonuses" of $10,000 each to vote against a contract which stripped them of their pensions & jacked up health care costs. Boeing is in deep shit in the operation it moved to South Carolina with masses of untrained, unskilled workers, costs overrides, canceled contracts, etc.

Airbus is beating Boeing's ass in recent sales and is considering opening an operation in Washington state to take advantage of the wealth of experienced workers shafted by Boeing.
November 7, 2013

Your argument is insultingly simplistic & flat wrong. The European Union is getting it right.

The EU's recent reforms to its farm subsidy program include features like:
(1) Farmers under 40 years old will get extra subsidies;
(2) 30 percent of EU members' farm payments will also be spent on "green" measures like crop diversification, maintaining grassland and creating ecological areas;
(3) favors young farmers and smallholders over big business;
(4) give farmers' organizations a greater role in helping farmers cope with market volatility;
(5) lets the markets play their role but also gives farmers a chance to play their role.


A reform of EU farm subsidies agreed this week will favour young farmers and smallholders over big business as well as more eco-friendly farming in a "paradigm shift" for Europe, a top official said on Thursday after three months of talks.

"We wanted to have a fairer and more economical Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), as well as one that is more in touch with the modern world," the EU's Agriculture Commissioner Dacian Ciolos told reporters in Brussels.

"This is the start of a paradigm shift for the CAP," he said.

Paolo De Castro, head of the Parliament's farm committee, said the deal was "a victory for EU farmers and consumers". Fellow European lawmaker Luis Manuel Capoulas Santos said it signalled the end of a "dependency culture" for farm subsidies.

November 4, 2013

William Coyne, retired long time congressman from Pittsburgh, dies

Source: Pittsburgh Post Gazette

William Coyne, 77, the quiet Democratic congressman who represented the Pittsburgh area for 22 years, from 1980 to 2003, has died.

Mr. Coyne, an Oakland resident, died early this morning of complications from a fall that occurred two months ago, according to Jamie Rooney, his longtime executive assistant.

“Bill was in good health until he fell and hit his head, very good shape,” said Mr. Rooney.

Often described as affable, but quiet and self-effacing, Mr. Coyne was an old-fashioned liberal who had a number of behind-the-scenes successes on the House Ways and Means Committee, including earned income tax credits for the poor and industrial development bonds for cities. He also had an admirable record of constituent service.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/local/2013/11/03/William-Coyne-retired-ling-time-congressman-from-Pittsburgh-dies/stories/201311030207

I had the pleasure of meeting him several times while he was in office. He was an old-fashioned liberal Democrat in the finest sense - a kind man and a gentle man, without a whiff of the entitlement, ego or greed of too many of today's politicians. The very best kind of public servant. Rest in Peace, Congressman Coyne. You were a good man and you led a good life.

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