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Member since: Sun Jul 11, 2004, 07:58 PM
Number of posts: 39,405

Journal Archives

Who is the wealthiest person at the biggest bank or Wall St firm to go to prison?

And who was the prosecutor who put them there?

Ask EVERY politician in Washington: Do you plan to DEFAULT on debt to Social Security?

DEMOCRATIC Senator Dick Durbin's disturbing comments about Social Security going broke in 20 years and general talk about "fixing" the deficit by cutting Social Security require that this be asked of every politician:

Since the 1980's, Congress increased the Social Security tax to build a surplus to prepare for Baby Boomers retirement, then borrowed that money to pay for other things. Do you plan to pay back every penny?

If not, why are you treating a debt to the American people with less respect than one to Wall Street bankers and investors?

What is or will be the alternative energy of the financial sector?

The robber barons of carbon and nuclear energy pooh-poohed alternative energy like wind and solar as a boutique source for decades, but the rapid, large scale adoption in places like Germany and the dramatic effect it has had on energy prices has made it clear that oil, gas, coal, and nukes days are numbered.

Likewise, the auto industry and big oil said electrics and even hybrids would never take off, but there's so many Priuses around now, I've often tried to get in the wrong car.

I think there's a similar alternative to sociopath controlled international finance that will eventually emerge, but what is it?

Credit Unions that have been around for decades?

State run banks?

Crowd-sourced finance?

This is probably the most important question for reforming our profoundly corrupt political system--the banks call the shots and not just our democracy but those around the world have to dance to their tune, invariably makes them richer and everyone else poorer--currently, a LOT poorer.

And oddly enough, most of the "rogue nations" of the world are holdouts against the banking order in one way or another.

Maybe there isn't one silver bullet that will put it down, but are there any other than what I've mentioned so far?

Will elected Democrats PLEASE throw Republican policies in the grave with the GOP?

In spite of voters wising up and voting Republicans out of enough offices to give Democrats the keys to the federal car, and Republicans increasing acting like Charles Manson on a bad angel dust, crystal meth bath salts trip, Dems keep driving like Republicans on too many issues:

  • Privatization of public education

  • Trade deals that put transnational corporations ahead of American workers

  • Wars for the benefit of energy companies, defense contractors, and banks (with a barely perceptible change in the lies used to sell those wars)

  • Turning a blind eye to the epic crimes and economic terrorism of Wall Street and transnational banks through neoliberal policies

  • Allowing Wall Street to choose their own regulators, dictate their own regulation for the most part, and have open door access to the White House (instead of access to the exercise yard at prison).

  • Bailouts for the rich not for the rest

  • and on and on

How badly do the Republicans have to fuck up the rest of us before Democrats at the top of the party admit that their ideas are cancerous, throw them in the grave, piss on them, and start shoveling dirt instead of taking them like a pack of cigarettes off someone who just died of cancer?

Jerry Brown signs bill creating two tiered tuition, one without any state support

As the Republicans are desperately trying to commit political suicide in Washington, Democrats in California are trying desperately to keep destructive conservatives ideas alive.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill that would allow California's community colleges to offer additional courses at inflated prices during short summer and winter sessions.


The measure sponsored by Assem. Das Williams, D-Santa Barbara, would allow community colleges to make courses available between the traditional fall and spring semesters.

It does not provide additional state funding to pay for the extra classes. Instead, students would be charged the nonresident rate of $200 per unit, compared with $46 for state-subsidized credits during traditional semesters.

Several community college systems and student and faculty groups opposed the bill, saying it would put lower income students at a disadvantage.


Divestment Campaign against fossil fuels growing fast, says study

It's tough to pepper spray, arrest, do a media blackout on a strategy like this.

Investors aren't just listening to the bobbleheads on network news. We can actually do a lot to influence this by persuading our retirement funds to divest from companies working against our interests, especially if you belong a public employees retirement system.

For teachers, this is exactly the approach we need to take the wind out of the sails of the corporate education reformers, and we need to start before it's too late.

Campaign against fossil fuels growing, says study
Investors being persuaded to take their money out of fossil fuel sector, according to University of Oxford study

Damian Carrington
The Guardian, Monday 7 October 2013

A campaign to persuade investors to take their money out of the fossil fuel sector is growing faster than any previous divestment campaign and could cause significant damage to coal, oil and gas companies, according to a study from the University of Oxford.

The report compares the current fossil fuel divestment campaign, which has attracted 41 institutions since 2010, with those against tobacco, apartheid in South Africa, armaments, gambling and pornography. It concludes that the direct financial impact of such campaigns on share prices or the ability to raise funds is small but the reputational damage can still have major financial consequences.

"Stigmatisation poses a far-reaching threat to fossil fuel companies – any direct impacts of divestment pale in comparison," said Ben Caldecott, a research fellow at the University of Oxford's Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment, and an author of the report. "In every case we reviewed, divestment campaigns were successful in lobbying for restrictive legislation."

The report is part of a new research programme on stranded assets backed by Aviva Investors, HSBC, Standard & Poor's and others. It found: "The fossil fuel campaign has achieved a lot in the relatively short time since its inception."


NORM SOLOMON: Google quietly joins ALEC

Roots Action has a petition to tell Google and other internet firms to get out.
In the mean time, can anyone suggest some OTHER search engines to use instead of Google?

NOTE: This article must be getting a lot of traffic because it took a while to load even though it's not image heavy or anything of the like, so be patient.

Quietly, Google has joined ALEC -- the American Legislative Exchange Council -- the shadowy corporate alliance that pushes odious laws through state legislatures.

In the process, Google has signed onto an organization that promotes such regressive measures as tax cuts for tobacco companies, school privatization to help for-profit education firms, repeal of state taxes for the wealthy and opposition to renewable energy disliked by oil companies.

ALEC’s reactionary efforts -- thoroughly documented by the Center for Media and Democracy -- are shameful assaults on democratic principles. And Google is now among the hundreds of companies in ALEC. Many people who’ve admired Google are now wondering: how could this be?


McChesney adds: “Any qualms about privacy, commercialism, avoiding taxes, or paying low wages to Third World factory workers were quickly forgotten. It is not that the managers are particularly bad and greedy people -- indeed their individual moral makeup is mostly irrelevant -- but rather that the system sharply rewards some types of behavior and penalizes other types of behavior so that people either get with the program and internalize the necessary values or they fail.”


IF Dems win in 2014, what should they do that would help US the most and help them in 2016?

They have a chance of clearing the table in 2014, but by being too corporate compliant, they could blow their chances for 2016, and screw the rest of us too.

What are some bold moves they could make if they have the House, Senate, and White House that would do the most good, politically and in the real world?

Dems could win both chambers of Congress in 2014--how do we keep corp Dems from blowing it?

The little daylight between the corporate wing of the Democratic Party and Republicans is probably what led to Dems losing the house in 2010.

For some core constituencies like teachers, even though we know the Dems are better than republicans, the "put corporate profits ahead of teachers and students" approach to education reform makes us feel like idiots for doing much work for them it's like your only choice is between dating someone who beats you with a baseball bat and someone who only beats you with their fists.

The corporate wing could blow this in two ways:
1. putting up candidates who don't highlight their differences with the GOP and instead try to co-opt their agenda

2. Getting elected but then going corporate once in office, dampening Democratic prospects for 2016

Far more importantly, besides making the horse race unnecessarily close, either option will hurt most of us A LOT.

We can't afford another Democratic president or members of Congress who make Nixon look like a socialist.

What can we do?

What will be the outcome of the shutdown?

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