Posts Tagged ‘Jim Hightower’

FIXING AMERICA IN 500 WORDS OR LESS: a free online book with interactive songs and videos

March 2, 2010

LINK HERE TO READ BOOK

LINK HERE TO READ BOOK

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WHAT IF YOU WERE IN CHARGE?

March 2, 2010

It is much easier to criticize political leaders than to truly have a better idea.   Regardless of political party or agenda, what would you do if you were in charge, to help regain public confidence in our long since vanished, dream of a democratic process?

Since a political leader should know what he or she is talking about without referring to notes, would you announce there will be no teleprompter allowed when you make speeches and hold press conferences?   Would you declare every speech you give will be drafted by you personally?

Would you take questions from press conference reporters impartially by drawing numbers from a hat, regardless of how recognizable their name is or what media they represent?

Would you hold publicly televised townhall events monthly in different cities, where ten members of the public with no press or organizational credentials, were selected by lot and allowed to ask direct unscreened questions?   Would you answer them while the cameras roll without cue cards and if necessary, conduct research and include anything not answered at the next event?

Would you clearly detail your current agenda for the nation at these townhall meetings, demonstrating that regardless of political fallout, there will be no secrecy, vagueness or uncertainty about the specific goals of your administration?

Would you cancel White House social events, annual Christmas and New Year festivities, elite “black-tie” gatherings and similar, until every American willing and able to work has a job that pays enough to afford basic necessities?   Would you promise you and your staff won’t eat better food on the taxpayer’s dime than average working-class families can afford?  Would you forbid your staff to fly on corporate jets and indulge in dinners, events and vacations paid for by someone else?

Although you could not control what members of Congress chose to do, would you put public pressure on all congressional leaders to set the same standards for themselves and their staff?

Would you prevent all lobbyists from being allowed access to either you or your staff, other than those representing individual taxpayers with specific individual needs not related to corporate interests?   Would you especially put intense and unrelenting public pressure on all Congressional leaders to do the same?

Would you require members of your cabinet to hold at least two scholarly degrees in their area of expertise, while insuring none of them are former lobbyists or, a member or former member of any financial institution?

To remain impartial, would you refuse to appear on media programs primarily devoted to politics and rather if invited, appear on popular shows like Oprah, Leno and Letterman, where you could freely communicate to the American people your concerns and goals, without being rudely interrupted by talking-point pundits with a private agenda not in the best interests of our nation?

Would you insist that neither you nor any member of your staff earn a wage higher than the median American wage?

If you were in charge, what would you do?   You decide.

Link to footnotes and documentation for this article

WHAT IS THE REAL RIGHT-WING AGENDA?

October 17, 2009

Right-wing extremists are the first to wave flags and pretend how much they believe in the Constitution and yet, they constantly whine and complain we can’t trust the government.  Apparently, they were asleep at the wheel during civics class, when the rest of us learned we the people are the government.

How many times must we endure Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh blather on and on about how we can’t trust our own selves, the government?  We can’t trust ourselves with tax dollars, we can’t trust ourselves with health care and we most certainly can’t trust us the government, to decide a convicted felon shouldn’t be armed to the teeth with every bazooka-type weapon imaginable.

Apparently, the so-called conservative “right” can’t even get our own Constitution right.  The idea of democracy isn’t to openly condemn ourselves by claiming we can’t trust the government.  Rather, the idea is to elect leaders to represent us and, to replace them when they instead, become right-wing corporate stooges and vote against our best interests.

Besides pretending to care about the unborn while totally screwing the already born, what the right-wing agenda really amounts to is, “we don’t believe in spending tax dollars to actually help taxpayers”. Rather, their goal is to use tax dollars for enhancing the bottom-line of the military industrial complex and otherwise, enriching corporations at the expense of us the taxpayers.

Any and every use of taxpayer dollars that will actually benefit taxpaying citizens is branded as “socialism” over and over again, the new all-purpose “red scare” bait-and-switch term of the 21st Century. The now entirely discredited Joe McCarthy appears “fair and balanced” alongside these Savage Nation and Coulter forty-five toting, hate-mongering meglomaniacs.

Education is supposedly high on the right-wing “safe issue” list, but conservative legislators consistently vote against increased spending for education.  Whatever they can’t eliminate because of political popularity, such as Medicare and Social Security, they try to “reform” into oblivion, creating huge funding black holes designed to funnel trillions of taxpayer dollars into big pharma and other deep corporate pockets.

Otherwise, the right-wing agenda is to convince average Joe Americans that all regulation of any kind is evil.  When in fact, wise regulation is what keeps tainted meat from ending up in all-American hamburgers, Joe American construction workers safe on their jobs and American Air Lines planes from falling out of American skies.

Wise regulation is the reason banks were relatively sound under Eisenhower.  While deregulation is obviously why they began their substantially crooked turn for the worse under Reagan, controlled by bloated greedy bastards of mass deception by the time Bush Junior was finished cutting a final slice out of the deregulation corporate mega-pie.

Is branding human beings “illegal” and blaming them for job losses and contagious diseases any different than what gave rise to Adolf Hitler and Auschwitz?  What is the real agenda of slave masters? What is the agenda of pure evil?

What is the real right-wing agenda?  You decide.

Link to footnotes and documentation for the above article

CAN WE BLAME SWINE FLU ON IMMIGRANTS?

October 17, 2009

CNN television host Lou Dobbs, who literally lives on land stolen from Mexicans by “illegal” Anglo settlers and their U.S. government, deliberately hammers home the term “illegal” over and over and over again.  Such self-aggrandizing demagoguery dehumanizes hard-working God-fearing men and women, whose only “crime” is trying to feed their hungry families.

Now, several right-wing hate mongers have used the 2009 so-called “Swine Flu” outbreak to pour more fuel on the already blood-drenched, hate-filled immigration issue fires.  Massachusetts talk radio’s Jay Severin, apparently an illegal alien from a galaxy far, far away, was suspended after he called Mexican immigrants “criminalians”, adding emergency rooms have become “essentially condos for Mexicans”.

Daily media diatribes of overt racism and human hatred have resulted in significant violence against poor immigrants in the past several years.  According to Southern Poverty Law Center statistics, hate crimes have increased dramatically, including the beating death of Mexican immigrant Luis Ramirez by Pennsylvania teenagers, who were later acquitted of murder by an all-Anglo jury.

A viral disease can “break out” in any apparent “country of origin”, as a result of external transmission of the virus.  European-borne diseases that destroyed entire native cultures would appear today in the same “real-time” ill-informed media reality, as if America was the land of origin.

Since Mexico City and surrounding areas are well-known tourist destinations, it is quite possible (perhaps even probable) that the “outbreak” of the “swine flu” in Mexico was a result of transmission by someone from a relatively immune population.  Thus, the real country of origin could be China, France, India, Israel, Australia or even the United States.

People living in Mexico may be less immune to this particular virus than a population located elsewhere, while that population may not be protected as well against another type of virus.  Even close-proximity populations can have immunities that neighboring populations lack, which could explain why “swine flu” in the U.S. was not immediately as severe as in Mexico.

A contagious disease could just as easily appear to “break out” in the United States, transmitted by a tourist from Scotland, Germany, Saudi Arabia or some other population and, be more harmful to people here than even those living in Mexico and Canada.  Anybody who doesn’t understand that disease is by-and-in-large, a global crapshoot, doesn’t belong on the public airwaves spreading gross deceptions of superstition, fear and racist-fueled hatred.

Some historians suspect diseases that were extremely detrimental to American native populations were transmitted by, you guessed it, herds of pigs that explorers took along with them as a food supply. What killed off native populations could literally have been a form of “swine flu” that European immigrants were immune to, because unlike native populations, they had built up immunities for centuries living in close proximity to their pigs.

Who’s going to immunize us against inhuman alien swine-balls dolled up in right-wing lip gloss?  Can we blame Swine Flu on immigrants? What is the real legacy of human hate-mongers?  You decide?

Link to footnotes and documentation for the above article

DOES THE NRA DEFEND THE 2ND AMENDMENT?

October 17, 2009

According to the 2nd Amendment of the United States Constitution,
“. . .the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed”.  The word “Arms” was deliberately capitalized, a common practice at the time used for emphasis.  Since Thomas Jefferson later owned a private cannon, the largest weapon in his day, the term “Arms” to the original framers clearly meant more than small arms one can easily “bear”; note, to “keep” and bear Arms.

The word “gun” is found nowhere in the Constitution, a very carefully worded document.  It should also be noted that in the Consitution’s pre-amble, one of the main purposes listed is to “insure domestic Tranquility” (also capitalized).  To honestly and correctly interpret the intentions of the framers, everything that follows the Preamble, including all ten original amendments soon added, must be viewed in light of the Constitution’s stated purpose.

For many years, the NRA has been guilty of drawing a non-existent, artificial line down the center of the 2nd Amendment, limiting the debate to guns, knives, grenades and similar small arms.  To contend that the 2nd Amendment permits unlimited unregulated private ownership of modern assault weapons, is no more Constitutionally rational than to pretend that the 2nd Amendment allows unlimited private ownership of chemical weapons, nuclear bombs and space-ray weapons, which are also modern “Arms” unknown to the framers.

In order to engage in an honest Constitutional debate, the NRA must admit that, according to their interpretation of the 2nd Amendment, we have just as much right to own private nuclear bombs and Anthrax as we do to own a multi-round handgun, none of which existed when the 2nd Amendment was drafted.  If we wish to have a society at all, then the 21st Century question is not “if” we are going to restrict the NRA’s interpretation of the 2nd Amendment but rather, in what manner are we going to restrict it.

For the record, if any living Americans have the right to argue in favor of restricting the 2nd Amendment, it is Jim and Sarah Brady.  And, as the “founding fathers” wisely allowed for, we can always amend what they originally wrote down.  A perhaps better and much saner idea would be to amend the NRA, entirely and altogether, by forcing our reluctant media to point out their deceptive and entirely irrational position.

The NRA has no more rational or Constitutional right to limit the 2nd Amendment to an issue of small Arms ownership than the ACLU has a right to restrict the 1st Amendment to their Constitutionally, historically and scientifically irrational interpretation of the known evidence. Perhaps Thomas Jefferson’s re-write of the New Testament, while he was a sitting president, would today include the following wry observation:  If conservatives and liberals crawl into a similar dark bed of deception, they will likely both end up in the same bottomless black hole, accordingly.

Does the NRA really defend the 2nd Amendment?  You decide.

Link to footnotes and documentation for the above article.