Saturday, February 27, 2010

Can you imagine an insurance company praying for arson?

Somewhere back up line we unconsciously or by our silence agreed to the notion that insurance companies and later HMO's have some sort of right to make a profit from health care.

We are lucky that fire and police departments -unlike hospitals and clinics - were never made vulnerable to insurance company domination or the creation of Fire Control Maintenance Organizations or Police Protection Maintenance Organizations.

If that had happened today's society would make the lawlessness of the Old West look like a Sunday School social.

When morality dictates what a society thinks of itself

I prefer a strong foundation in ethics moreso than a society founded on morality.

Morality is much more subject to subjective opinions.

Morality demonstrates itself by what the original God-commanded governance in the Pentateuch deteriorated to at the time of Jesus.

The "law" had so totally engulfed the "spirit of the law" that shoe-lace-tying and cows in the mud became great issues of moral discourse.

That seems to be where we are today.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Guest Article: To Tea Or Not To Tea

Could some very clever people be using this movement to strengthen the Republican Party rather than transform the political system?

If so, then most of the Tea Party crowd have been conned and deceived.

By Joel S. Hirschhorn
Feb 10, 2010, 00:20

As a long term, proud political dissident and rebel I have had some admiration for the national Tea Party movement. I welcome all that shakes up and reforms our dysfunctional political system. But in the end I find far too much distasteful about what these people embrace to participate in or support it.

I have been especially disappointed with their lack of interest in reforming the American political system through a third political party.

Sometimes Tea Party people say they are fed up with both major parties, but they keep supporting Republicans. As if this will put people in Congress who would actually act as independents and work courageously to enact true, deep reforms.

Call me cynical, but I doubt whether people like Senator Scott Brown will resist pressures to be loyal Republicans no matter how extensively they avoid calling themselves Republicans in their campaigns.

Sadly, the Tea Party movement is a blow to third parties, particularly the Libertarian Party that has struggled for many years.

Could some very clever people be using this movement to strengthen the Republican Party rather than transform the political system? If so, then most of the Tea Party crowd have been conned and deceived.

Second, I am nauseated by the noxious negative views about President Obama, even though I did not support or vote for him.

Attacks on his citizenship, calls for his impeachment, and labeling him a Marxist seem thinly disguised tactics hiding racism and not an accurate understanding of the facts about him and his policies.

To simplify, for example, getting the nation out of the Great Recession requires massive government spending to reboot the economy, a plain fact that virtually every economist over the entire political spectrum recognizes. It does not represent socialist or Marxist principles.

Yes, there should have been more spending on directly helping people and small businesses rather than the financial sector, but this does not invalidate massive government spending.

Third, the pervasive support for smaller federal government and so many other openly expressed platitudes reveal inconsistencies and outright hypocrisy about what Tea Party zealots are willing to do to show their true beliefs.

I want to see these people proudly professing their commitment to stop participating in Social Security and Medicare;

stop using public schools for their children;

stop taking unemployment payments or support for job training;

stop using local police and fire departments and public libraries. I want to hear far more support for necessary government functions.

Less government does not necessarily equate to better government.

With critical thinking, Tea Party zealots must recognize that it was not excessive government action that caused the Great Recession, bur rather too little government action to stem the greedy actions among banks and other financial institutions.

The core problem is not excessive government but corruption of government by private sector corporate and other special interests.

Yet, I hear very little from this crowd about the exact means they would use to eliminate pervasive corruption of the two-party plutocracy.

Their glib talk about freedom and regard for the Constitution is not supported by more than empty rhetoric.

I would have much more respect for this movement if it embraced the nonpartisan effort by Friends of the Article V Convention at to make Congress obey the Constitution and give us what the Founders believed would be a necessary option: An Article V Convention of state delegates that could propose constitutional amendments, true reforms that the corrupt Congress will never propose.

Without this there are a whole lot of constitutional hypocrites.

Fourth, passionate support for Sarah Palin is appalling.

There is no rational basis for such support based on her beliefs, actions and policy positions. She is a blatant numbskull and intellectual midget with damn good looks and speaking skills, but to make her a political leader is disgraceful.

In sum, it is heartening to see so many Americans with genuine anger, frustration and disgust about American politics and government.

I share these feelings.

Great motivation, but what it is producing seems little more than an avenue for racist views and desire to strengthen the Republican Party, which when it had considerable political power did far more to advance corporate interests and the wealthy than helping ordinary Americans.

We need a populist Second American Revolution. Populism yes; Republicans and Democrats NO!

Recognize this or die still waiting for the change you have been waiting for and suffering with a delusional democracy.

See the Article V convention option as the constitutionally provided populist path to true reforms. Demand that candidates openly support making Congress obey the Constitution and give us the first Article V convention.

An Article V convention would be the way to have a meaningful Tea Party that honored our Founders.

Contact Joel S. Hirschhorn through; he is a co-founder of Friends of the Article V Convention and former chair of the Independent Party of Maryland.

Afghanistan, foxes, chickens and farmers

"During all those months that Obama was dragging his feet about escalating the war in Afghanistan, did you ever get the impression," he asked, "that foxes were in the hen house, chickens were squawking and running around crazily, wolves were tearing the foxes to pieces, and farmers were shooting wildly into the coop with no regard for the innocent?"

More recommended reading.

Walk a Mile [In Obama’s Shoes]

Sheila Samples’ blog

“It's difficult to imagine President Obama, after promising change -- promising to stand guard and end our wars of aggression -- deliberately putting himself in a position where he appears impotent when he is ignored and over-ruled by subordinates.

He has been warned by those who have been there, done that. He is being warned by the people who are gathering for massive national anti-war marches in Washington D.C., Los Angeles and San Francisco on March 20 -- the seventh anniversary of Bush and Cheney's illegal war of aggression against Iraq.”

American Foreign Policy touched by God … sort of


Remember the movie “Exodus” and author Leon Uris who wrote it? Well, let me get this straight …

Recommended reading

Time for an American intifada?
By Jeff Gates
Online Journal Contributing Writer

“Americans are easily swayed by sympathetic portrayals of an enclave granted nation-state recognition by President Harry Truman, a Christian-Zionist. The Missouri Democrat had famously read the Bible cover-to-cover five times by age 15.

Truman was a True Believer in the same way that fundamentalist Christians believe -- truly believe -- that their Messiah will not return until the ‘Israelites’ recover their ancestral home.

Preying on similar beliefs, Republican George W. Bush, another Christian-Zionist president, was induced with phony intelligence to wage war in Iraq. The false intelligence was traceable to Israelis, pro-Israelis or assets developed for that purpose. That invasion had long been a priority goal of those who believe -- truly believe -- in their right to an expansionist Greater Israel.”

And finally this excerpt:

“Deceit from the outset

A beguiling combination of Hollywood fiction, manipulated beliefs and outright lies remain at the core of this entangled alliance and the U.S.-Israeli ‘special relationship.’

The deceit deployed to advance the hegemonic goals of the Zionist project remains obscured by an undisclosed media bias reinforced by a widespread pro-Israeli influence in popular culture.

As with the 1960 film, the ongoing manipulation of thought and emotion lies at the core of this duplicity a half-century later.

In The Persuasion Explosion (1985), author Art Stevens reports that Exodus was a public relations ploy launched by Edward Gottlieb who sought a novelist to improve Israel’s image in the U.S.

The name Uris originates with Yerushalmi, meaning “man of Jerusalem.” The film rights to Exodus were sold in advance of the book’s publication.

Translated into dozens of languages, this masterpiece of mental and emotional manipulation quickly became a global phenomenon as it created favorable impressions of Israel.

The rewards are real for those who offer aid and comfort to this trans-generational deceit. When Truman’s campaign train traversed the nation as part of a 1948 whistle-stop tour, grateful Jewish nationalists refueled his campaign coffers with a reported $400,000 in cash ($3.6 million in 2010 dollars).

Those funds helped transform his anticipated loss into a victory with support from pro-Israeli editorial boards that -- after recognition -- boosted Truman’s sagging popularity.”

You and I are smarter than this.

In the “I’ve got to keep you angry so you will keep tuning in!” category, Mr. Limbaugh and a number of Fox News opinions are milking Bill Clinton’s health problems to keep their worshipers angry and out of temptation to critical thinking’s ways.

Telling them what to think and when to think it …

Doofusness; The incumbent sitting Lame Duck American President

It's a vanity issue. For Mr. Trump that means he must satisfy Mr. Hannity, Ms. Coulter and these kind folks: On Networks and ...

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