Archive for October, 2013

Eat The Rich?

These are hard times in America.  While wealthy people laugh about foreclosures and discuss how much to cut Social Security with glee, the poor keep getting poorer as the rich just keep getting richer.  The age of the Robber Barons has returned.  The billionaires in America were created not from their own work but by government grants.  Grants of land to the railroads made their owners wealthy beyond imagination.  Never in the history of the USA had so few made so much money from the government.  Years later the Russians created a similar oligarchy when the Soviet Union fell apart.  Despite this or maybe because of it the heirs of these wealthy people dread using the government to improve the life of poor folk.  It seems quite fine to help out the rich, but a mortal sin to help the poor.  Evidently the poor have God on their side so the rich need the government to balance things out.  This begs the question:

 

 

Apple iOS Upgrades Resemble Microsoft’s

Apple Upgrades Resemble Microsoft’s

The latest upgrade to the iPhone and iPad feature iOS 7.  There are some distinct improvements.  Mainly there is one improvement, it is easier to see the words and letters.  Otherwise the improvements are starting to look upgrades that Microsoft endlessly offered to Word and Excel.  With the Mac along about the time of Office 98 the upgrades started to be changes for the sake of change.  O 98 was a great upgrade that changed the clunky Windows like program into a superb Mac program that could have been written in Cupertino.  But then…has anyone really been excited by an Office upgrade in the last 15 years?  In both Word and Excel Microsoft began to make changes instead of upgrades.  Keystrokes meant something under the old program and then you had to learn something new.  That was an upgrade?

Now Apple is hard at it.  Among the worst feature/change is the combining of the search and internet address boxes.  When there were two boxes, your computer searched when you wanted it to search and went to a web address when you entered it.  Now you have to take time to figure out what it is going to do and then to try to choose what you want before the box closes or Safari makes a decision for you.  I find this completely annoying on the Mac and even worse on the iPhone.  In fact I don’t use the internet on the iPhone because of this.  It drives me crazy.  I can’t understand how anyone could possibly view this as an improvement.

Another change is the method to turn off ever running Apps.  Apps often run even when you leave them  This drains the battery and no doubt they are running programs to collect information which will be sold to the highest bidder.  In OS 6 double tapping the Home button brought up the troubling Apps and you could tap the “x” to turn them off.  Now you double tap the Home Button and swipe up on the mini-phone with the picture of the program.  Completely unintuitive.

The camera changes were also unintuitive.  You have to push “photo” or “square” to the spot rather than just touch what you want.  With a touch screen interface one would think that touching movie or video enabled that feature but you have to slide it along.  It seems someone at Apple is in love with sliding things on the interface.

Notes has no lines in it, which makes it harder to read?  Why one might ask.  Change for the sake of change ala Microsoft.

Other features that should be standard are hidden.  For example:  making the text bold so the tiny letters are easier to read should be the default, yet to do this you have to hunt through the settings to find the appropriate box to check and restart the device.

The one upgrade that was helpful is to make the screen easier to read.  Thanks for that.    However we are still waiting for a large phone?  Please see my other articles for an amplification of that point.

The Republican Shutdown: Why They Did It And Why Obama Doesn’t Care

The Republican Shutdown: Why They Did It And Why Obama Doesn’t Care

 

Since the Republicans goals for government are very limited, using the shut down as a tool for getting what they want and disrupting the work of government is a logical extension of their basic philosophy and strategy.  Republicans don’t want the government to provide services for people, they don’t want the government to regulate businesses, and they don’t want the government to produce an egalitarian society.  They want less regulation of businesses, lower taxes for wealthy people, more spending on the military and a society which is dependent on the whim and will of multi-national corporations who have no loyalty to the USA.  They want a society that is run by the rich for the rich.  The United States government is just another tool to make that happen.

 

For the Republicans this fiasco has actually been a great victory.  No one is talking about reforms that benefit poor and middle class people, least of all Obama.  Goal achieved.  No one is talking about reducing the military in the mainstream media.  Ditto.  Both political parties are painted as equally inept.  This alienates voters and makes them less likely to vote.  Decreasing the vote increases the leverage of multimillionaires and corporations because advertising works.  Victory for the Republicans.  The economy ticks down a few notches from the lack of spending and the Republicans howl Obama’s economic policies are a failure, another victory.  The Republicans are willing to hurt the poor and middle class to get what they want.  Obama must be willing to stand up to them, speak the truth and fight for what is right.  But he cannot, or will not.

 

Obama is not FDR.  He won’t say these people are you enemies and I will fight them.  Rather he mouses that they have a different point of view and properly we should be working together on some kind of grand bargain that he believes will endear him to the very people who hate not him but the cartoon character of him that the right-wing media has created.  How and why Obama thinks that he should meet people half way who maintain he is a Muslim from Kenya and further why he thinks he can reach an enlightened set of policies with them is mind-boggling.

 

Why he can never say the opposition is wrong, bad for the poor and middle class and only working for the rich who are heads of multi-national corporations (that have no loyalty to the USA at all) will be forever the subject of speculation.  Ralph Nader has stated Obama is a political coward.  Dennis Kucinich believes Obama is getting exactly what he wants and that as a right-wing Democrat the continued dismantling of the New Deal is fine with Obama.  Kucinich believes that Obama is an active participant not a timid politician or inept negotiator and that his pretense of being progressive in the primaries was just that.

 

Obama acted on the shut down to first stop paying for programs that help the least among us. He stopped feeding poor women and children while maintaining other expenses that he could have cut.  He could have closed all the government agencies and military bases in the Red states.  This would have shown the Tea Baggers what they were losing.  It would have made the cuts hit home.  Permanently closing a few basis in Texas would have made Texans realize how much benefit their communities were getting from the government.  He also could have ordered the military to stop using oil and gas.  The US military is the world’s single largest purchaser of fossil fuels.  Again by hitting the corporate Republicans in the pocket-book he would have made a point.  Instead he cut off programs to the poor which are invisible to the average person.  And of course the media all but ignored this.

 

Obama’s refusal to call the extreme right-wing the enemy of the American people is incomprehensible.  FDR made it clear that there were people who were working for a better society for all and people who were only interested in themselves.  FDR was clear about which side he was on and was willing to fight.  Obama is not.  Obama’s presidency will now limp from crises to crises as the House Republicans refuse to fund the government or raise the debt ceiling.  Progressive reforms are off the table.  There will be no gun control in a country gone gun crazy (and this includes the militarization of the police who recently murdered a mentally ill person for driving in circles), no single payer health care, no reduction of military spending, no infrastructure creation, no plan to convert to natural energy and away from fossil fuels, no plan to give every child a decent education, no discussion of the student loan debt bomb and certainly no new taxes.  So arguably the Republicans got everything they wanted from the shut down and  so did Obama.

 

Why Are the People With Money and Power Opposed to “ObamaCare”?

Why They Fear and What They Fear About “ObamaCare”

This is reality?  A nation of angry poor white folk and wealthy rich white folk join hands and march for political change.  We Shall Overcome, they sing.  A movement born in blood to save liberty herself?  Jefferson would be proud?   At any moment Joan Baez will sing Blowin’ In The Wind on the streets of Texas.  All this for what?  Oh, to prevent Health Insurance Companies from complying with a set of regulations that are nothing more than common sense.

To wit:  Well Point Insurance wrote a computer program that scanned their database of their insured.  The program looked for evidence of breast cancer in women.  All women with that history had their policies cancelled, savings at least $100,000 per insured.  That is what the insurance companies call the free market.  Libertarians, Republicans, Chicago School of Economics (Milton Friedman’s followers), Ayn Rand cultists, like Greenspan and Paul Ryan, call that enlightened self-interest.  Normal people call that insanity.  But that is what the Tea Bag Nation is fighting for.  Mighty Whitey is up in arms to prevent a few insurance companies from having to follow common sense rules.  I won’t go into the specifics of ObamaCare here, but, trust me, this is not FDR, LBJ, RFK or JFK CARE.  It is ObamaCare.  It is a Republican program and policy that was designed and implemented by Romney in Massachusetts.  There is nothing left-wing about the entire program.  It is merely tries to civilize crony/monopoly capitalism.  All first world countries have free national health care.  We are the single exception because we now have an oligarchy that has one goal.  And that oligarchy is becoming more powerful every year.  That goal is shared and supported by the right-wing radio echo chamber among others.  Though America is far more Democratic than Republican, 90 percent of the radio talk shows are right-wing extremists.  Not middle of the road Republicans, but Tea Baggers, Ayn Rand cultists, Neo-Cons and fascists.  That goal is supported by both Cable and over the air TV.  The TV corporate media supports wholeheartedly the unfettered free market ideas of the Tea Baggers.  Well dressed sociopaths calmly articulate a coherent message that resonates across all the news channels in support of these ideas.  The talking points are created by think tanks funded by the Koch Brothers, gun lobby, oil industry and other organizations that want no regulation on business.  (And no government support for the poor and needy.)  The TV media tolerates the loony social and religious cults that both frames this propaganda in simple terms of good vs evil and provides psycho foot soldiers for an otherwise army of fat cats, economic royalty and greedy rich people.

The TV media repeatedly quotes Republican insiders and their power broker consultants who lament like haggard old testament prophets the inexorable doom ObamaCare presents not just to America but to Earth itself.

A rational person has to ask:  “Why the hyperbole?”

What is ObamaCare and why is it such a threat to people who already have  more money and power than they will ever need?

The ObamaCare Act is not a health care act.  It does nothing to improve the dismal quality of health care in the USA.  No effort is made to have doctors treat disease appropriately, to prescribe drugs only when needed, to do know harm, and to prevent disease.  A simple report from Reuters in June of 2010 says it well enough:  “(Reuters) – Americans spend twice as much as residents of other developed countries on healthcare, but get lower quality, less efficiency and have the least equitable system, according to a report released on Wednesday.”   June 23, 2010-Reuters.

So what does ObamaCare, this great threat to freedom, actually do?  ObamaCare regulates the Health Insurance industry.  That is all.  The Health Insurance industry is a multibillion dollar industry which takes money out of health care and gives it to people who make lots and lots of money doing administrative work.  Medicare for example has a 3 percent overhead costs.  Private Insurance until ObamaCare could take as much out of the health care dollar as they could get away with.  That was the free market approach.  Under ObamaCare they can only skim off 20 percent of the premiums for private purposes.  Keep in mind this is almost 7 times the cost of government-run health programs.  Most of that money goes to a few wealthy people who in turn support politicians that make sure the flow continues.  Money flows from the poor and middle classes to a few wealthy people.

So why is ObamaCare such a big deal to powerful rich people?  Their one goal is to increase the amount of money and power that they have and of necessity decrease the amount of money and power that the 99 percent of other American’s have.

ObamaCare prevents things like having one CEO pay himself 1.4 billion dollars a year for his work of administering health care.  Now Insurance companies must use 80 percent of their premiums for health care costs.  Overhead is limited to twenty percent.

Of a sudden money and power are now flowing from Insurance executives back to their insured.  Ever so slightly the poor are getting richer and the rich are getting less richer.

That is what they hate about this bill.

It was said that FDR saved capitalism from itself.  Obama maybe doing the same.  Our healthcare system is a joke. Health care is terrible. Mental health care is worse than terrible.  A progressive candidate running on a “Medicare For All and Mental Health Care For All” platform could easily have won the next election.  And we could have a host of progressive reforms.  We could have reinstated Glass-Steagall, reduced the size of the military, closed outdated and unneeded WWII bases overseas, set a minimum social security benefit equal to the minimum wage, and raised the minimum wage substantially.  In fact Obama could have easily been the second FDR but he chose to be the first black president instead.  He is a conservative, right of center Democrat, who if he had not been born black or of a mixed race would have been a conservative Republican (if born all white).

As a result he is saving all the Insurance executives, Big Pharma, hospital “administrators” (who are now the highest paid professionals in the USA) and medical device manufacturers from themselves.

A Medicare for all system could have cut their profits to the bone by negotiating good deals for the tax payers.  But Obama left in place a grossly inefficient system that spins off multimillionaires while casting the uninsured and those incapable of dealing with the system to an early grave.

So why do they hate ObamaCare?  Because the tsunami of deregulation that has disemboweled America since Reagan stole the election from Carter has just been slowed down.  Money is flowing from the rich insurance companies back to their insured.  This marks a change in direction.  Their howls for deregulation and lower taxes on the rich as a solution for every problem now will have some people thinking the contrary.  “Well, regulation helped health care so maybe…”.

The great fear of the MultiNational corporations who control America is that this will wake people up.  They will realize that for thirty plus years the simple sayings, bumper sticker logic, and foolish policies that have led to financial decline for 99 percent of America are in fact based on policies that are easily changed.  Policies which benefit the superrich instead of the poor and middle class have caused the decline, not taxes on estates of .01 percent of the country, or health care programs.  The Christians who form the base for the support of these destructive policies will start to read the Bible and ponder:  “And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” Are those who make millions of dollars a year like George Romney the “least among us” who need the help of the US government?  If Christians ask the right questions they will stop supporting the extreme right-wing of the Republican Party and the edifice that seems unmovable would crumble quickly.

If so the progressive political movement could be reborn.  Again why one might ask should government spend all of its time helping the people who are wealthy and successful?  Aren’t the people who need help the ones on the bottom not the top?  The re-regulation of Banks, Wall Street, Trade and Political Money could in few short years start once again redistributing the wealth downwards instead of upwards.  This would lead to a better life for the 99 percent and make for fewer billionaires who are so greedy and out of touch with reality that though they have more money than they can ever spend in 1000 lifetimes focus only on making more money, getting out of their tax obligations and doing this by any means necessary.  To them, the psychopathic rich, the ends justifies the means and Reagan and Ayn Rand have given them the moral cover for a culture of greed that is embraced by a sick media and Corporate state that Huxley would easily recognize.  That is why they hate ObamaCare, it reminds people that capitalism only works when it is heavily regulated.  And that hurts profits.

‘Bama Gone Barbados

‘Bama Gone Barbados

Joshua Gone Barbados

-see Dylan (Basement Tapes)

Souls breakin’ in heartlands

Our folks old then dead

Lot of misery in Mytown

No child bein’ fed

‘Bama head of the government

He say “vote for better day”

Hope voters are callin’

But ‘Bama gone away

Well ‘Bama gone Barbados

He’s stayin’ in a White hotel

People know ain’t goodtimes

 Got many sad tales to tell

Citi the banker told our people

Don’t need you to cut my loss

Bring me another sack of dollars

Your laws be all in vain

A lot of misery in Georgetown,

You can hear all the children bawl

‘Bama’s gone Barbados

And he don’t care at all

Yeah, ‘Bama’s gone Barbados

Acts like he don’t know

Poor people in the heartland

Ain’t got no place to go

Get a bunch of rich fellas,

 Bring ’em at ‘Bama’s will

Ridin’  their big jets to Georgetown

 Empty coffer’s to fill

Goldman’s feind the overseer

I swear he’s a horrible man

He’s a-walkin’ through a WhiteHouse

Blood money in his hand

And ‘Bama’s gone Barbados

He’s stayin’ in a White hotel

Poor people in USA

Got many sad tales to tell.

Its our Justice givin’ protection

Same fellas runnin’ the game

Voters can’t do nothin’

Vote be all in vain

Goldman’s devil cussed the voters

Wave his money ‘round

Well time treatin’ Goldy with a guillotine

Heads all to the ground

Well ‘Bama gone Barbados

He’s stayin’ in a White hotel

People in USA

Got many sad tales to tell.

Theres a lot of misery in Georgetown,

You can hear all the children bawl

‘Bama’s gone Barbados

He don’t care at all

Man sleepin’ in the streets

Gettin’ old and dead

Bama’s men, in the money sweet

Smiles on their head

I wish I could go to Berlin,

Canada or Amsterdam

But the people in the cold streets

Ain’t got no place to go

‘Bama gone Barbados

Acts like he don’t know

People in USA

Got nowhere else to go.

Elizabeth Warren Responds to Scott’s Questioning of Her Heritage-2012 Campaign

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2008 Campaign Lost Episode of Leave It To Beaver

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