Welcome to DU! The truly grassroots left-of-center political community where regular people, not algorithms, drive the discussions and set the standards. Join the community: Create a free account Support DU (and get rid of ads!): Become a Star Member Latest Breaking News General Discussion The DU Lounge All Forums Issue Forums Culture Forums Alliance Forums Region Forums Support Forums Help & Search


Divernan's Journal
Divernan's Journal
August 31, 2014

No, you're the one with the conflict because you're in financial services.

Nobody mentioned religion/ethnicity but you. I appreciate your honesty in your DU profile - it helps to evaluate someone's post to know where their personal interests lie. If you were the Michael Goldman who was a VP at Chemical Bank/now J.P. Morgan, you're not going to like the comments about Big Banking on DU, but I certainly understand why you support corporatist Hillary/Goldman-Sachs/Clinton for President.

Real name: Michael Goldman
Gender: Male
Hometown: Manhattan-NY, NY
Home country: USA
Current location: Upper East Side of Manhattan
About 3rdwaydem
I am a life-long resident of New York. I work in the financial services industry. I am a moderate Democrat.
Statistics and Information
Account status: Active
Member since: Mon Aug 25, 2014, 07:33 PM I am a life-long resident of New York. I work in the financial services industry. I am a moderate Democrat.

August 30, 2014

"Give'em hell, Tom" - From Terry Madonna's "Politically Uncorrected Column"

Political science professor, G. Terry Madonna, has been the well-respected guru of political polling in Pennsylvania since the early 90's. Politicians in both parties take his work deadly seriously. But in today's Trib-Review, there's a report that GOP Gov. Corbett's campaign team is desperately accusing Madonna of fudging the statistics in the latest Franklin-Marshall poll, which shows Corbett trailing challenger Wolf by 25 points.

“It's typical of what happens,” Madonna said. “Pollsters get attacked if the campaign's not doing well.”

Madonna has a track record of accuracy in showing which candidate is in the lead – including the polls running up to Corbett's 2010 gubernatorial win.

Madonna has gone through this before. In 2012, former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum called him a “Democratic hack” when Franklin & Marshall polls showed Santorum trailing Mitt Romney in the GOP presidential primary.

“They're not interested in objective; they're trying to win an election,” said Madonna.

Read more: http://triblive.com/state/pennsylvania/6700387-74/madonna-barley-campaign#ixzz3BsEEWI5u
Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook

Checking up on Madonna, I came across an absolute jewel of a website for detailed analysis of Pennsylvania politics, i.e., Madonna's Politically Uncorrected Column. Here are excerpts from one of the most recent columns, titled "Give 'em Hell, Tom" which analyzes Corbett's pathetic attempt to run against Harrisburg when he's been governor for 4 years, and both chambers of the legislature are controlled by Republicans.

Consequently, Tom Corbett, after four years in office, has little to show for it – unless you count mounting frustration, growing animosities, a divided legislative leadership, and failure to enact most of his major agenda. So Corbett, making a virtue out of a necessity, is becoming the first gubernatorial candidate in history to run against Harrisburg for a second term.

So far, so good. Actually, running against Harrisburg has not just been a favorite strategy in state politics; it has also been a successful strategy. In modern times, going back to Gov. Milton Shapp in the 1970s, at least four governors, including Corbett, have earned a first term sticking it to the “Harrisburg culture.”

Moreover, one could argue that “Harrisburg,” with its cliques, obstructionist tactics, recurring corrupt behavior and anti-reform ethos really is the problem. Democratic President Harry Truman, also trailing badly in the polls, made something like this work for him in his classic 1948 comeback, running against a “do nothing” Republican Congress. However, unlike Corbett's situation, Truman's party didn't control Congress, which made Truman's strategy credible. Still, why can’t Tom Corbett do the same?

Give 'em hell, Tom. Or not.


The entire article is a good read, as are other columns on the blog. IMHO, Madonna truly understands the history and culture of Harrisburg and politics in the state and within each party, and writes about them in a very accurate, yet also entertaining way. I'll be eagerly following this blog between now and November.
August 29, 2014

Not nearly at the rates all the Clintons are collecting.

Which are in hope and anticipation of HRC in the Oval Office. Cheney only gets $50,000, and he did as much as Clinton for the MIC. And when you think about it, if you are right about these fees being payoffs for past favors, what does it say about whose interests Bill Clinton was promoting if he can collect up to $750, 000 for a single gig. Corporate giants don't squander 3/4 of a million dollars to reminisce about the good old days. At this point the Clintons are so bought and paid for by so many One Percent special interest groups and corporate sources of One Percenters' income, that her biggest problem as president would be in prioritizing which sponsor to reward first.

Re Bill Clinton's fees:

The most lucrative was a November speech in Hong Kong to Swedish-based telecom giant Ericsson -- $750,000. Clinton also earned $700,000 for a March speech to a local newspaper publishing company in Lagos, Nigeria, and $550,000 for a November speech to a business forum in Shanghai, China. He earned $500,000 apiece for three events in Austria and Holland in May and in the United Arab Emirates in December.

Prior to 2011, the most Clinton had earned from a single event was $525,000 for a 2008 speech in Edmonton, Alberta. Those astronomical speaking fees will be Gone With the Wind, should Hillary announce she's not running.
Here's one set of ranges, from 2012:
$5,000 – $10,000. This would be the typical range for top keynote speakers – people who have given numerous keynote speeches in the past and/or have serious career accomplishments.
$10,000 – $20,000. Most of the major conferences pay their keynote speakers something within this range. Even for some of the more well-known keynote speakers, this is no fee to sneeze at; and if it is, keynoting the conference is probably an honor in itself as well.
$20,000 – $50,000. This is the range for most celebrity speakers. When I say celebrity speakers, I mean actual celebrities that are household names or alternatively, category experts that are such big draws that it simply makes economic sense to pay this fee.
$50,000 – $100,000. The top celebrity speakers’ fees are in this ballpark. There are only a few dozen folks that would be priced above this range. Typically, an organization paying a fee like this one can do so because the keynote speaker is such a big draw that ticket sales far exceed the amount of the speaker fee.
$100,000+. Interested in hiring Bill Clinton? Richard Branson? Donald Trump? You’ve found your range.
- See more at: http://evanbailyn.com/keynotespeakers/the-ultimate-guide-to-keynote-speaker-fees/#sthash.tQFe3jv1.dpuf

The minute HRC announces she is NOT running - if that comes to pass, all the Clintons' fees will drop like stones and the phone will stop ringing in their agent's offices.
August 29, 2014

Hysterically funny article trashing Corbett's campaign hopes & in the Tribune Review!

It's amazing to me that the Tribune-Review would trash a GOP Governor like this. And although the piece went on line at 11 p.m. last night, not a single rabid conservative reader has come to Corbett's defense in the comments section. With his approval ratings down to 24% in the latest poll, combined with a voter turnout that will likely be under 30%, one hopes for a REALLY low GOP turnout, resulting in the most epic loss ever in a PA. Governor's race, and boost to Democrats running down-ticket from Wolf.

Rubber, Corbett expected to hit road as polls show likely loss in governor's race

Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014, 11:06 p.m.
Updated 13 hours ago

The smell of burning rubber is wafting through Pennsylvania. It is the scent that results when the accelerator is floored, but the vehicle remains in park with its tires squealing. It is the scent of Gov. Tom Corbett's re-election campaign.

Despite there being more than two months before Election Day, a sense of inevitability is pooling under the Governor's Mansion like leaking oil collecting beneath an aging Chevy. Corbett faces nearly insurmountable odds in defeating Democratic challenger Tom Wolf in November.

After his abysmal polling numbers in late spring, Corbett needed to gain considerable ground on Wolf over the summer. Instead of moving forward, the governor was pushed off the spring line of scrimmage as easily as a lightweight offensive lineman with an eating disorder.

In June, a Franklin & Marshall University poll had Wolf in the lead, 47 percent to 25 percent with 27 percent of respondents undecided. The latest Franklin & Marshall poll released on Thursday had Wolf ahead 49 percent to 24 percent, with 25 percent undecided. There's more. Corbett's favorability declined to 24 percent in the latest poll, down from 27 percent in June. Corbett's unfavorability increased to 56 percent, up from 49. Corbett's unlikely path to victory seems clear at this point: Somehow persuade the entire undecided demographic to vote for him, while maintaining hope that a small percentage of Wolf supporters tragically perish in a rare autumnal avalanche in Colorado.

Read m
ore: http://triblive.com/opinion/ericheyl/6661449-74/corbett-percent-wolf#ixzz3Bnf44vt3
Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook
August 29, 2014

Hmmm. Women raised Republican have low self-esteem.

That could explain HRC's choice to stay with Bill. Raised by a domineering Republican father to have low self esteem, combined with identifying one's worth as a woman to being married, and one's husband's status.

But I'm of her generation & when hubby cheated on me (I forgave him the first time, not the second), I kicked his sorry, executive, MBA-d ass out the door, enrolled myself in law school & successfully raised 3 kids all on my own. To me, any woman who stays with a serially adulterous husband, is seriously lacking in self-esteem - unless she realistically sees herself as totally unable to make a decent living on her own & she & the kids would be financially destitute. However, a woman who has a Harvard law degree, and when her husband was Governor, was making more money than him at a major law firm? And don't anyone come up with that garbage of staying for the children's sake. What a role model for kids! Daddies can cheat and lie and waste family resources on the bimbo du jour and expose Mommies to STDs - funny I never heard any true feminist promoting this role model for marriage and parenthood.

August 29, 2014

Look at the comments in the Courier-Journal; tea partiers writhing/snapping

like a sackful of demented rattlesnakes. Motivated me to leave the following comment there:

Although I lived (and very happily so, on Alfresco Place, just off of Bardstown Road) in Louisville until the age of 9, when my Dad got promoted/transferred to Chicago, this is the first time I've looked at the Courier-Journal. Having seen national coverage of the McConnell/Koch Brothers story, I was curious to see how the locals were reacting. Oh my goodness! The irrational, hate-filled commentary from the Tea Party/Conservative contingent does not speak well for the Bluegrass State. As another commenter said, the rest of the country is counting on y'all, Kentuckians. Our democracy is in desperate need of campaign finance reform, to nullify Citizens United and put the decision-making back in the hands of the voters, and not the One Percenters. That will be a hard battle, given the deep pockets of the Koch Brothers and their ilk, but it can never even begin to happen until McConnell is removed from leadership.

To quote Stephen Foster's lyrics, "By 'n by hard times come a-knocking at the door. Then my old Kentucky home, good night." Without liveable wages and the safety net of unemployment compensation, those hard times are knocking at doors in Kentucky and throughout this nation. I think this Senate election in Kentucky is the most important one in 2014. Unless you are a One Percenter, do right by yourselves, your kids and grandkids, your state and the whole country, and elect Grimes.
August 28, 2014

Explosion Shakes BP's Largest Oil Refinery in The U.S.

Source: ClimateProgress

A fire broke out at BP’s largest U.S. refinery on Wednesday night after a compressor exploded in one of the refinery’s units, sending shakes through local homes and injuring one worker, according to media reports.

The explosion is the latest mishap at the company’s Whiting Refinery in Whiting, Indiana, which in March was responsible for leaking up to 1,638 gallons of oil into Lake Michigan. That incident occurred less than two weeks after the U.S. lifted BP’s ban on seeking new oil leases in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Whiting refinery is a huge operation, producing up to 423,500 barrels of oil every day. It’s the seventh-largest refinery in the United States, and was recently upgraded to process oil from the Canadian tar sands.
BP said it had contained the fire as of Thursday morning, and that the plant continued to operate.

The plant itself has drawn opposition from environmentalists because of its proximity to Lake Michigan, which supplies drinking water for seven million people in the Chicago area alone.

Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/08/28/3476659/explosion-bp-whiting-refinery/

Thanks, Obama, for lifting BP's ban on drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. Cause we can see from the series of spills and explosions at BP's largest US refinery that the corporation has really cleaned up its act regarding operating safely! NOT!
August 27, 2014

GOP Gov. Corbett: Reform Liquor Laws So It's Easier For Women To Make Dinner

Not to worry - his approval rating is already so low, the Pirate Parrot could beat him next November.
He is the quintessential clueless old white male Republican.


Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett (R) thinks his state should reform its liquor laws. That way, he argued, women would have an easier job making dinner.

Corbett made the argument in July during an appearance on The Sam Lesante Show. The clip of him making those comments was reposted Tuesday by the Democratic political PAC Fresh Start PA, which supports Corbett's opponent Tom Wolf (D).

"I think a lot of people want to be able to walk into a grocery store," Corbett said. "Particularly, a lot of the women, want to be able to go in and buy a bottle of wine for dinner, go down buy a six pack or two six packs, buy dinner, and go home. Rather than what I just described, is at least three stops, in Pennsylvania."
August 24, 2014

You betcha! Bill Clinton net worth- $80 million; HRC - between $5 & $25 million

Where have you been hiding for the past couple of months - tons and tons of posts about the Clintons' accumulation of wealth since leaving the White House. But here you go, in excruciating detail, courtesy of HRC's State Department filing.

And these numbers are BEFORE her recent multi-million speaking fees, and also don't include the multi-million vanity family non-profit, which is totally under the control of the Clintons and pays them undisclosed amounts in salary and benefits, not to mention 5 star luxury travel accomodations - private jets, personal assistants, presidential suites at hotels, etc. That's why I call it a VANITY non-profit.



HRC: Average Net Worth: $13,130,504*

Minimum Net Worth: $710,008
Maximum Net Worth: $25,550,999

Average 2011 Income: $13,801,055**

Min. Gross Income: $13,737,009
Max. Gross Income: $13,865,100

Name: Hillary Clinton
Last Filing: May 31st, 2012

Title: Secretary of the State
Salary: $186,600

Party: Democrat

Term Start: January 21st, 2009
Term End: January 20th, 2013

JP Morgan Custody Account (Cash) $5,000,001 - $25,000,000
Real Property, California (Spouse) $500,001 - $1,000,000
National Life Insurance Company (Cash Value - Universal Life Policy) (Spouse) $100,001 - $250,000
US Treas NTS 4.875% 8/15/16 BOND $50,001 - $100,000
Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance (Cash Value - Whole Life Policy) (Spouse) $15,001 - $50,000
Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance (Cash Value - Whole Life Policy) $15,001 - $50,000
Fed Home Ln MTG 4.875% 11/15/13 Bond $15,001 - $50,000
US Treas NTS 4.625% MAT 2/29/12 Bond $15,001 - $50,000
US Treas NTS 5.00% 2/15/11 BOND Less Than $1,001

Abu Dhabi Global Environmental Data Initiative (AGEDI) (Spouse) Abu Dhabi, UAE $500,000
Bank Administration Institute (Spouse) Chicago, IL $200,000
HSM Americas, Inc. (Spouse) New York, NY $175,000
Deloitte Services LP (Spouse) New York, NY $200,000
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (Spouse) New York, NY $200,000
Highland Capital (Spouse) New York, NY $175,000
TD Ameritrade (Spouse) Las Vegas, NV $200,000
American Express (Spouse) New York, NY $200,000
World Market Center SPE, LLC (Spouse) Las Vegas, NV $175,000
UBS Wealth Management (Spouse) Dallas, TX $165,000
Jeffries & Company, Inc. (Spouse) New York, NY $200,000
Magic Dreams Productions, Inc. (Spouse) Panama City, Panama $325,000
Fundo Comunitario of Keren Hayesod Sao Paulo (Spouse) Sao Paulo, Brazil $200,000
World 50, Inc. (Spouse) New York, NY $175,000
Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (Spouse) New York, NY $200,000
UBS Wealth Management (Spouse) Los Angeles, CA $150,000
Bank of America Merrill Lynch (Spouse) $200,000
Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCOC) (Spouse) Toronto, Canada $175,000
Beaumont Health Systems (Spouse) Troy, MI $260,000
HCL America, Inc. (Spouse) Orlando, FL $200,000
Hualuo CEO Forum (Spouse) Shanghai, China $550,000
Telefonaktiebolagel LM Ericsson AB (Spouse) Hong Kong, China $750,000
Masie Center (Spouse) Orlando, FL $200,000
Association for Financial Professionals (AFP) (Spouse) Boston, MA $175,000
Defense Research Institute (DRI) (Spouse) Washington, DC $204,000
Silicon Valley Information Business Alliance (SVIBA) (Spouse), Santa Clara, CA $200,000
City of Surrey (Spouse) Surrey, BC, Canada $175,000
American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) (Spouse) Las Vegas, NV $200,000
Achmea (Spouse) Achlum, Holland
Yum! Restaurants International (Spouse) Vancouver, Canada $160,000
Highstar Capital (Spouse) Washington, DC $175,000
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) (Spouse) $255,000
Cambridge Energy Research Associates $175,000
Business and Finance Media Group (Spouse) $125,000
The Philharmonic Center for the Arts (Spouse) $200,000
Kuwait America Foundation (Spouse) $175,000
RSA, Security Division of EMC (Spouse) San Francisco, CA $175,000
Hualuo CEO Forum (Spouse) New York, NY $200,000
Barclays Capital (Spouse), Davos, Switzerland $325,000
Tanmiah Commercial Group (Spouse) Riyadh, Saudi Arabia $300,000
Bridgestone America Tire Operations (Spouse) Huntington Beach, CA $175,000
Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) (Spouse) Chicago, IL $170,000
Cisco Systems, Inc. (Spouse) Kiawah Island, SC $210,000
Leaders and Company Ltd. (THISDAY Newspaper Group) (Spouse) Lagos, Nigeria $700,000
Center for Global Dialogue and Cooperation (CGDC) (Spouse) Vienna, Austria $500,000
Ilau BBA USA Securities, Inc. (Spouse) New York, NY $175,000
TD Bank (Spouse) Fredericton and Antigonish, Canada $260,000
Fidelity Investments (Spouse) Orlando, FL $175,000
The National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare (NCCBH) (Spouse) San Diego, CA $260,000
HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. (Spouse) Key Largo, FL $200,000
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association (PhRMA) (Spouse) Jersey City, NJ $200,000
Goldman Sachs (Spouse) New York, NY $200,000
Whisky Productions (Spouse) Grand Cayman $225,000
Nideias Comunicacao Ilimitada Ltda (Spouse) Manaus, Brazil $390,000
JP Morgan Custody Account (Cash) $50,001 - $100,000
Random House (Spouse) - My Life $50,001 - $100,000
Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance (Cash Value - Whole Life Policy) (Spouse) $5,001 - $15,000
Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance (Cash Value - Whole Life Policy) $5,001 - $15,000
Simon & Schuster, Inc. - Living History $2,501 - $5,000
US Treas NTS 4.875% 8/15/16 BOND $2,501 - $5,000
US Treas NTS 4.625% MAT 2/29/12 Bond $1,001 - $2,500
Fed Home Ln MTG 4.875% 11/15/13 Bond $201 - $1,000
US Treas NTS 5.00% 2/15/11 BOND $201 - $1,000


CitiMortgage, Inc., Sioux Falls, SD Mortgage on Personal Residence $1,000,001 - $5,000,000


Charitable gift assignment regarding the literary work "Invitation to the White House" White House Historical Society 12/99
Publishing Agreement regarding the literary work "Invitation to the White House" Simon & Schuster, Inc. 12/99
Charitable gift assignment regarding the literary work "Dear Socks, Dear Buddy" National Parks Foundation 9/98
Publishing Agreement regarding the literary work "Dear Socks, Dear Buddy" Simon & Schuster, Inc. 9/98
Publishing Agreement Regarding the Literary Work "Living History" approved by Senate Committee on Ethics Simon & Schuster, Inc. 1/01
Publishing Agreement Regarding the Literary Work "It Takes a Village" Simon & Schuster, Inc. 12/06
Positions Held Outside U.S. Government

The Clinton Family Foundation, Chappaqua, NY Non-profit Charity Secretary/Treasurer 12/2001-Present
William Jefferson Clinton Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust Life Insurance Trust Trustee 07/1996-Present
William J. Clinton 2010 Irrevocable Trust Life Insurance Trust Trustee 12/2010-Present
William J. Clinton 2010 Residence Trust Residence Trust Co-Trustee 12/2010-Present
Hilary Rodham Clinton 2010 Residence Trust Residence Trust Co-Trustee 12/2010-Present
Estate of Dorothy E. Rodham Estate Co-Personal Representative 12/2011-Present


Type Asset Amount Date Partial
Sell JP Morgan US Treasury Money Market Fund (consolidated with the JP Morgan Custody Account - Cash) $5,000,001 - $25,000,000 3/2/2011 N

-value of personal residence not included in this filing
-bulk of the Clinton's family income is generated by Bill's speeches
-Bill Clinton's taxable pension of $191,300 is not included in this filing. The former President also receives a number of other perks, including travel expenses, staff salaries, rental payments (office) and Secret Service protection

-Teneo Holdings LLC, Varkey GEMS Foundation and Laureate Education, Inc. all listed "other income" of "Nonemployee compensation over $1,000"

Source: US Department of State

*Average Net Worth = (Max Net Worth + Min Net Worth) / 2

**Average Income = (Max Net Worth + Min Net Worth) / 2
Includes Salary, Doesn't Include Deductions

Note: Assets and Income are given in ranges, which is why there is a minimum and maximum net worth and income figure.

August 23, 2014

"changes in diagnostic criteria" =s Big Pharma casting an ever widening net.

I hang onto my lab results from my annual exams. Can't help but notice how readings which once were in the "normal" range have now been reclassified into abnormal - re blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, etc. necessitating lifelong prescriptions. As many others have observed, Big Pharma has no interest in cures, only in lifelong treatments. Antibiotics fall into the "cure" class, and infectious disease experts have been warning us for years that as bacteria mutate to overcome existing antibiotics, the pharmaceutical industry has fallen way behind in developing new antibiotics.

A huge moneymaker for Big Pharma is HGH (Human Growth Hormone). One couple I know, on their pediatrician's advice, had both their sons injected weekly with HGH for years. Dad is 5'8"; Mom is 5'4" and both sons - now adults - are six feet four inches tall. That's eight inches taller than their father (or their grandfathers or uncles).

Treatments, not being medically necessary, were not covered by insurance, so no oversight re approval/necessity of treatment. The expense was $15,000 per child per year. "Dad" liked the idea that his boys could be jocks (which he never was) if they were tall, and more attractive to girls. Oddly, both boys have extremely long legs and are awkward - neither of them ever played even Little League, let alone team sports in grade school or high school. Once I learned what had happened to these young adults, I took a closer look at the teens at the local Y. A lot of the girls had legs like giraffes, out of proportion to their torsos - we're talking 5'10" - 6' tall, while their moms were 5'2"-5'6". Suddenly I got the picture of a popular pediatrician in a well-to-do community hyping HGH like mad and getting lots of perks from Big Pharma.

Here are some of the researched side effects for prescribing HGH to "normal" kids.
If HGH is given to children with normal growth, serious side effects may occur because levels in the body become too high (http://www.msnbc.com/news/785625.asp?cp1=1#BODY). They include development of diabetes; abnormal growth of bones and internal organs such as the heart, kidneys and liver; hardening of the arteries, and high blood pressure (http://www.msnbc.com/news/785625.asp?cp1=1#BODY). New research also suggests a link to colorectal cancer later in life (http://www.msnbc.com/news/785625.asp?cp1=1#BODY). Long-term over-dosage could result in symptoms of acromegaly, or excessive bone growth (http://www.msnbc.com/news/785625.asp?cp1=1#BODY). HGH injections should not be given to children with normal growth because they could get diabetes and develop malformed growth of bones and internal organs, hardening of the arteries, and high blood pressure (http://www.msnbc.com/news/785625.asp?cp1=1#BODY).

Profile Information

Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 15,480
Latest Discussions»Divernan's Journal