Friday, December 25, 2009
But lately watching as events unfold like the economic distress served to us by a broken system of government that continues to ignore the needs and the will of the people resulting in escalating debt, the theft of our 401s & 403s , loss of jobs and home foreclosures that may leave many people with little reason to celebrate.
Our government seems like it is run by corporations as our representatives show more concern for protecting them as opposed to protecting us from them.
The investment bankers are invited to dictate banking laws & regulations.
The energy companies are allowed to pollute and plunder our environment with no repercussions.
A morally corrupt health care insurance system is given a seat at the bargaining table along with Big Pharma to dictate policy that will protect their profit while sacrificing a basic human right to health care.
As our representatives continue to vote 'yes' and fund wars to feed a bloated military industrial complex. All these endeavors feed profit motivated greed at the expense of the base, us, we the people, the taxpayers.
In his farewell speech to the nation Eisenhower warned us of the potential threat of a military industrial complex.
"A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction...
This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence — economic, political, even spiritual — is felt in every city, every statehouse, every office of the federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society. In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together."
Before Eisenhower's warning FDR's radio address to the nation suggested a second Bill of Rights, an Economic Bill of Rights be implemented.
"It is our duty now to begin to lay the plans and determine the strategy for the winning of a lasting peace and the establishment of an American standard of living higher than ever before known. We cannot be content, no matter how high that general standard of living may be, if some fraction of our people—whether it be one-third or one-fifth or one-tenth—is ill-fed, ill-clothed, ill-housed, and insecure.
This Republic had its beginning, and grew to its present strength, under the protection of certain inalienable political rights—among them the right of free speech, free press, free worship, trial by jury, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures. They were our rights to life and liberty.
As our nation has grown in size and stature, however—as our industrial economy expanded—these political rights proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness.
We have come to a clear realization of the fact that true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. “Necessitous men are not free men.” People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made.
In our day these economic truths have become accepted as self-evident. We have accepted, so to speak, a second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all—regardless of station, race, or creed.
Among these are:
The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation; The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation;
The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living;
The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad;
The right of every family to a decent home;
The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health;
The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment;
The right to a good education.
All of these rights spell security. And after this war is won we must be prepared to move forward, in the implementation of these rights, to new goals of human happiness and well-being.
America’s own rightful place in the world depends in large part upon how fully these and similar rights have been carried into practice for our citizens."
We have to remember or else "those that cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it. "
Our Congress & Senate have struggled and lost to corporate interests and the lobbys over real health care reform. At the same time they managed to approve more money for more war.
Hope you all can find time to enjoy the holidays.
Remember 'peace on earth, goodwill towards men'.
Monday, December 21, 2009
Just Say No
That's right, was there ever any doubt, I mean really, after watching this dog & pony show go from the House to the Senate, what did you expect?
The Republicans didn't contribute anything meaningful to this extravaganza just their usual attempt to obstruct. On the other hand the Democrats have screwed this up quite well all by themselves. Sometimes I can't tell the difference between them as things play out in a 'dumb & dumber' scenario.
We really need some election reform too. This two party system is fixed.
Last week even Dr. Howard Dean was ready to give up on this turd of a health care bill.
Yeah that's right even former Governor and former Chairman of the DNC couldn't stand the stench of this turd.
He says that he still wants to see REAL reform but this ain't it so "Kill the Bill"..
Keith Olbermann has a great special comment and some advise.
He addresses the mandates and the penalties that we will face if this bill makes it.
It is amazing how these so-called representatives could take a heath care system that is so broken and perverted by corporate greed and profit and make it worse.
Jane Hamsher from firedoglake has summed things up nicely.
And there is a petition to sign!
10 reasons you will want to "Kill This Bill"
" #1)Forces you to pay up to 8% of your income to private insurance corporations -- whether you want to or not
#2)If you refuse to buy the insurance, you'll have to pay penalties of up to 2% of your annual income to the IRS
#3)After being forced to pay thousands in premiums for junk insurance, you can still be on the hook for up to $11,900 a year in out-of-pocket medical expenses
#4)Massive restriction on a woman's right to choose, designed to trigger a challenge to Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court
#5)Paid for by taxes on the middle class insurance plan you have right now through your employer, causing them to cut back benefits and increase co-pays
#6)Many of the taxes to pay for the bill start now, but most Americans won't see any benefits -- like an end to discrimination against those with preexisting conditions -- until 2014 when the program begins
#7)Allows insurance companies to charge people who are older 300% more than others
#8)Grants monopolies to to drug companies that will keep generic versions of expensive biotech drugs from ever coming to market
#9)No reimportation of prescription drugs, which would save consumers $100 billion over 10 years
#10)The cost of medical care will continue to rise, and insurance premiums for a family of 4 will rise an average of $1000 a year -- meaning in 10 years, you family's insurance premium will be $10,000 more annually than it is right now
The CBO is reporting they were off in some of their previous estimates and this Senate bill won't save people any money or reduce the defict. They said that the gross cost would be roughly $23 billion higher (than the original estimate of $871 billion) over the next 10 years.
Again, is this the change you were hoping for?
>>> added 12/22/09
If you don't believe me, Dr. Dean and Jane, how about 17,000 physicians that have joined together, written a letter to the Senate stating this bill does more harm than good and is NOT the single payer health care REFORM they want.
Friday, December 04, 2009
Lies & Deception in Afghanistan
Obama the candidate and Obama the President seem to have less & less in common.
Obama held another in I'm sure what will be a long list of photo ops, in front of the cadets at West Point. He really seems to like the camera and the attention and at the same time almost seems comfortable ignoring the fact the decisions of he and his advisers make things worse.
I may sound cynical but this event is so fraught with lies and deception that it stinks of Bush. Staged in front of a group of cadets that may certainly be sacrificed in this "war on terror"; excuse me, occupation for corporate profits and the endless pursuit of energy; makes it difficult to imagine what kind of cold calculating bastards ignore the irony of the audience.
Obama played the fear card and reminded everyone of the events of 9/11, the pursuit of the Taliban & al Qaeda while embracing the Bush Doctrine (yes Sarah, this) as only a neocon can.
Ignoring the facts and making bad decisions has become a reoccurring theme. Like appointing people to positions who have no business making decisions and advising anyone on problems they helped orchestrate. IE- Larry Summers, Tim Geithner, Tom Daschle, Wm Lynn and now Gates and McChrystal..
The continued occupation of Iraq= illegal, Afghanistan= illegal, the CIA using drones to pursue members of al Qaeda into Pakistan = illegal.
These assaults on foreign entities are all illegal!
The civilian casualties, the military casualties, all the money spent and all the money wasted on fraud & abuse of the independent (no-bid) contractors and for what?
In the pursuit of energy and profits for the corporate interests of the Pentagon and the Military Industrial Complex, that's what.
General McChrystal wants another 40k troops. Obama started to weigh his options and McChrystal pulls an end around Obama and goes to the media. At this point Obama should have kicked McChrystal's ass to the curb for insubordination. McChrystal can always report back to Cheney for further instructions for torture and his secret assassination squad.
So now Obama's big plan is to send another 30k troops into Afghanistan.
"Stupid is as stupid does".
As enlightened beings gifted with hindsight you would think these morons would remember that those that forget or ignore history are doomed to repeat it. We are not the first to stumble and fall down this path.
The Afghani people DO NOT want us there. Our growing occupation is the catalyst that feeds the fire in the peoples bellies and serves as a recruitment aid to the insurgents. Again our history tells us that our presence in the Mid East (building bases) is what fueled the hatred that led us to the events of 9/11. That is unless you believe the events of 9/11 were orchestrated by PNAC & Associates (Cheney, Rumsfeld, etc.), the CIA and the Mossad.
There are presently about 70k troops in Afghanistan. Add another 30k and we have 100k, plus about 105k private security contractors. Killing civilians and building more bases while pursuing 100 so-called threats. We are the threat!
Would you call this an occupation?
The troops have been stretched to their limits. They have been abused by manipulating the number of tours they can be forced repeat to the point the PTSD #s have gone off the chart. Suicides are the worst ever. We don't have enough troops to respond to another emergency if another situation should arise. Our troops are worn out. Show some compassion and really support our troops. They need a break not another rotation into Afghanistan to guard a pipeline. I attempted to communicate last month that the position of these troops; both ours and NATO; guards the proposed pipeline.
"There are designs of this pipeline, and if you look at the deployment of US forces in Afghanistan, as against other NATO country forces in Afghanistan, you'll see that undoubtedly the US forces are positioned to guard the pipeline route. It's what it's about. It's about money, it's about oil, it's not about democracy."
"It's the pipeline, stupid"...
If Obama continues to ignore the concerns of the people he may end up a one term president. Blatant lies and deception are not likely to be tolerated anymore, we had eight years of that from Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Rice. The hypocrisy of Obama's actions could be his undoing.
If he is determined to protect the former administration from prosecution for war crimes and many other misdeeds and continues to embrace the Bush Doctrine by escalating these occupations, he will have to give back the Nobel Peace Prize. You might think after seeing his over the top religious coronation that he would employ a more peaceful foreign policy.
Great article, more details...
"The Audacity of Hype"