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The more with which time passes, the more one sees how some things always stay the same.

This is something unrealized by youth… I certainly couldn’t see it, though many elderly tried to project their insight into me.. I simply lacked enough background to understand.

But seeing the return of things you fought to vanquish and were once successful, as well as expanding ones knowledge-base across many cultures, times, and distances, one tends to see a larger pattern in effect that probably is conducive to our survival…

Here is how it relates to conservatives and liberals, democracy and our ultimate survival…. .

No matter who you are, when you are, or where you are, if you are comfortable in your position, you tend to lean towards conservatism… Why wouldn’t you?  It’s what enabled you to get and keep what you have… On the other hand, when you have nothing but dreams listed as your assets, you’ll insist on change, or newness, or something better than what you have.. Why shouldn’t you?  Who would want to stay in the same decrepit conditions one finds themselves when they don’t have to?

And so democracy is simply a mechanism that allows for the ebb and flow of fortunes to change policy so parity is maintained for the most part…

When a majority of people are doing better than those who are not, then keeping what is working now is best for that society as a whole.  On the other hand if it it not working, then changing ones course is better for that society.  That makes so much sense, does it not?

So being a liberal in a time of economic well being is, how should we say politely, being “very forward thinking”?… Likewise being a conservative in a time of turmoil, could be rather dangerous, being so outnumbered so… you better hope you are “well liked”….

It is rare that events outside the human experience impact us on a large scale. Most of what affects us drastically (wars, Depressions, power grabs) usually comes from mankind’s own doing:… acts where we consciously chose to go a certain route, and more or less, damned all the torpedoes that got in the way.

Today we are in a bru-ha-ha of our own making…. Most of it directly came from our choosing to go towards giving the top 1% all of our money and keeping less for ourselves… It was a conscious decision on our parts.  We elected enough Republicans to allow them to do what they told us they would do.  It was no secret. We made a bad decision.

The experiment failed.  They kept all the money and none trickled down, at least here within our borders… Our wealth actually built up China, which is great for them, but that hasn’t helped us much.

When one finds out one is losing something important, one hangs onto it harder… Which means someone has to try harder to take it away, right?… This gives insight into the harshness and lack of decorum in politics today… The ugliness we see today in Conservatives, and the hard clenching tenacity we see in Liberals, we’ve seen before in this country.  We had it in the 1820’s between the old guard wealth of the Eastern Seaboard, and the wide individualistic wealth newly available across our national heartland.  We saw it in the 1850’s as slavery hit the hot button and both sides became bitterly entrenched as support for slavery evaporated into a cauldron of gunpowder.  It only took one spark.  We saw it in the 1890’s as the capitalists grabbed up more and more companies, crushed workers rights, and the workers in cities became less and less empowered. Finally Republican Progressivism broke out of the chokehold. Then WWI flipped the scales back to big business and an investment boom followed by a Great Depression again created the necessary environment for another total sweep of old for new.  That “new” lasted 60 years until it succumbed to having been so successful so that so many numbers who had previously benefited from liberal policies switched allegiances to keep their assets to themselves… And that leads to today, where our individualistic efforts to improve ourselves simply were not enough to balance ourselves comfortably against wealth and power and we are again looking at more government interaction…

So rawness and candor have always been part of politics.  Always will be. Some things never change. (Some of us love it, btw.)

So what is happening today is that the post Republican Depression economy has made mockery out of those “traditional” Republican values and the only thing they have to hold on to power right now, is their appeal to the prejudiced.  Against this direct solicitation, Progressives continue to offer a new vision of hope to millennials, or the return to the old vision of what actually worked well for 60 years to those still alive who actually lived it.

The conservatives count the votes and know their time is numbered.  Population trends have pointed this out for many years. Which readily explains why they focus on ways and methods to limit large numbers of those voting, and have vacated all plans to appeal to new members… No surprise here.

In this election conservative policy has been reduced to stem complete annihilation of their party… For whereas they have failed over the past 16 years, Progressives have succeed across that same time. By going hog-wild on bigotry, they are using the only tactic with which they know how to keep some members in their party from flipping…

Bigotry is a “thing” unfortunately… And right now…. it is the only “thing” Republicans have to garner one single vote this November…  Unless of course, it is ….. “wild hair”…

Donald-Trump-Mocks-A-Reporter-With-A-Disability-And-Says-He-Doesnt-Remember

 

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I did see this coming… just in a different person.  I thought it would be Gov. Scott Walker now in the lead but with the same contingent backing him, and…. coupled with some big Koch money always being bundling up behind him where ever his footsteps led.

What I didn’t foresee was that the Kochs would pull the money plug on Scott early on and flip to Cruz…  But that is exactly what happened and almost as soon as he got the Koch’s call that he was finished, Scott Walker dumped his campaign..

But he would have run it defiantly against all the establishment and he would be where Trump stands in his shoes now… Where he got out-played in the first debate was by not knowing how to steal the limelight back from someone building a gigantic wall and preposterously making Mexico pay for it… If he’d immediately countered that he, Scott Walker would build two walls, one North and one South, both to keep brown people out, and would make the United Nations pay for it…, he could have recaptured the spotlight. He didn’t, his moment passed, and the media and public went after Trump..

Without his lead role as defiance-in-chief, he had nothing else to run on…

The point being, that I accurately pinpointed way ahead of all the other commentators over at WDEL, what the Republican electorate was feeling…

I’ll explain it by quoting from Today’s exit poll data….

“More than half of GOP voters saying they feel “betrayed” by their party’s politicians supported Trump. Unsurprisingly, Trump—the only non-politician left in the race—dominated among those who want the next president to be from outside the political establishment, winning three-quarters of their votes.”

The actual total is 55%.  Get that?  Somewhere between 5 and 6 out of 10 Republicans, feel betrayed by their OWN party… The Mitch McConnells. The Paul Ryans.  The Mitt Romneys. The Ted Cruzs, The Marco Rubios….Their assorted Senators and Representatives…

They feel betrayed…

And not necessarily because candidates weren’t conservative enough… Their betrayal came about because they elected a majority of Republicans to make individual voter’s lives better, and on that contract item, they did not deliver….

From the American point of view, when any attempt arose to make American’s lives better, these new Republicans drug their feet to doom it to failure.  Which is why… the leading candidate…. was a once a democrat supporter friend of Hillary, who was against the Iraqi War and who supports strengthening Social Security and Medicare, not tearing it down…

  • When they drug their feet on Obamacare… Americans got hurt.  Republicans didn’t care.
  • When they shut down the government… Americans got hurt.  Republicans didn’t care.
  • When they defaulted on America’s debt… Americans got hurt..Republicans didn’t care.
  • When they didn’t care about up to 48 million Republicans on SNAP but gave the billionaires a $438 billion dollar tax cut, Republicans didn’t care….

All of which would have certainly helped Hillary………. but they want someone other than Hillary…

Enter Donald Trump.

The more the establishment hates Donald Trump, the more his supporters reaffirm their allegiance.  For the non-establishment candidate is exactly what these voters want… They did not get prosperity from the establishment, they got financially worse… Since the Recession, their lives got tighter and the wealthy’s lives became more loose and easy… No taxes; no regulations; no requirements; no rules.

Now here is one of that upper crust, a billionaire himself,  extending to them the exact same rules that his establishment plays by…

Donald is now a symbol;  talking about holes in his statements, his firebrand racism, his vapid plans for the future, only cements the view these people have: that they are saying this only because they think Donald Trump will change the things they’ve set in stone…. The more you attack him; the greater his support swells…

If you are a Progressive (reading this) think back on 2008! The more the conservative press piled dirt on Obama (what was that pastor’s name) the more his supporters rallied to his cause to not only defend him, but finance him, and work hard to get him elected… If you can remember such, you can begin to understand the attraction Lord Voldemort has over the Death Eaters… oops, Republicans…
Trump is simply THE ANSWER to a lot of people’s problems….. it may not be what you like, but you… are not “those people”…

As he wins, he grows.  Now that the establishment has let it out they are going to “try” to unseat him at “their” controlled convention, of course, that makes Trump even more of a hero..

And to his credit. He has morphed the Republican Party from a party of butt-licking sycophants run by email chains penned by the elite, to a boisterous, rowdy, lively, cantankerous party flailing around, seeking a direction on where it might go… Very much like America in 2016 if you ask me….

Though I don’t like racism, I do like how Trump hates Wall Street and the big banks.  I do like how he is not beholden to big money and I presume he will do what is necessary as gleefully as he throws out protesters from his forums.  I do like how in battles with monoliths versus little people, he sides with the little people.  For those with long memories, his early campaign is very much like Reagan’s.  Those who only know the “myth of Reagan” will contest my claim, but if your memory is good, you’ll remember how everyday people flocked to his appearances, and how both the Establishment Republicans and all the Democrats, all turned up the heat to blow him out of the race….

Trump is so much like Reagan, I’m almost thinking he will win….  despite the racism, despite the hatred, despite the emotions, and despite the hair… Like Reagan, just looking at him, you like him. Like Reagan, both come from acting and know how to push an audience’s buttons. Like Reagan, both approach everything as non-negotiable; their way or the highway…  For people unhappy with everything in general but have no specifics at which to gripe, this is very attractive.. Just as it was in 1980…. And like Reagan, both are really Democrats at heart, just playing a Republican for TV….

 

There is a way to beat him.. whether by John Kasich, Ted Cruz, Bernie Sanders, or Hillary Clinton.  The last debate showed how… From all reports of that last debate Trump stopped using his attention-getting bombs and without them to “plow the road” ahead of him, he hit quite a few land mines set up for him to step on.

The way to beat Trump is not to yell at what he is… and that was the tact taken by the Democrats in 1980 and to their dismay, the American people didn’t care about the old ideas of what a President should or should not do. They didn’t care about procedures and traditions laid down over long periods, dictating how politics were supposed to unfold…

But considering all the huge negatives Ronald Reagan had in his campaign of 1980, if Jimmy Carter had been able to put up a plan that solved the problems then of stagflation, misery indexes, military ineptitude, and a feeling that America had drifted off from its destiny, he would have cut into Reagan’s overwhelming victory…

The sole way to beat Trump is not to attack him (though that could serve to bring out your voters in higher numbers)  but to offer a plan to America that will solve its problems faster than electing a big mouthed bigot who just yells and points fingers and says he’s going to fix it… whatever “it” is…

America only elects those representing its “dark side” when it sees no other option available.

To beat Trump, you have to get in front of him on how you will make America great again;…how you can give “faster” relief without building a wall.;…. How you can make us safer and not ban our third largest religion from whom we will again import a vast majority of  our oil; … how you can do all this without alienating that 50% of our population who just got called “fat pigs.”.

As long as no one hears that, how you will actually fix things,… if you can’t offer a solid solution, Trump will win the Republican nomination and continue to beat out Hillary in the electoral college…

Because if there is anyone representing the “establishment”  it IS, Hillary Clinton.  Americans are SO FED UP with the establishment they will support anyone and anything, who promises to bring it down….

That explains Trump’s popularity… He is the creation of the Republican Party’s grinding down our gears of government to a standstill. In a world where Republicans and Democrats worked together going with up or down votes on everything put before them for their perusal, Trump now would be on the outside, quickly typed-cast as a weirdo looney as was Michele Bachmann.

But run government efficiently…. is not what Republicans did… That is why we have Trump…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the best quotes I got from Tuesday’s Primary (Super Tuesday), was that the Republican Party is finally showing some unity.

It is uniting under Donald Trump.  Not that the Republican power elite wants it too, but the reality is that in state after state, individual voters are doing what the elite of their party cannot do… unify the party behind one man….

The Republican voter is voting exactly what he wants… Face it. The average Republicans wants Mexico to build a wall,. they want all Muslims banned, and they want to be perfectly comfortable with their prejudices, even though they didn’t know that was what they wanted, until “the Donald” put it out there. But it IS out there, and THAT, is what they want…

The GOP is unifying behind it.and getting stronger party primary turnout than it’s had in years….No one is really surprised except those at the top of the Republican Party who’ve been in denial all these years over what their party really was…

Others of us have been saying that all along….

🙂

 

Exclusive:  I accidentally clicked on a link and got sent down this path… It is unlikely you know anything about it.  You may remember that at sometime last year, in excavating for a parking garage some bodies were found in Britain.   Being a mass grave, the original contention was the corpses came from the time of the Black Plague...

Believe it or not, those bodies were exhumed, and in the tissue we found the organism responsible.   We ran its genetics.  The gene code casts serious doubts upon the rat /flee stories we’ve always been told.  And with what we know about disease today, it could not have spread as rapidly as it did, had it not been airborne…. it’s deadliness has been unsurpassed in recorded time.  Its kill rate was as high as 6 out of 10.  … it took Europe 150 more years to catch up again to where it had been when the Black Death arrived….

Courtesy of Wikipedia

Perhaps if health is a concern of yours  you may remember the Madagascar outbreak just at the end of 2013?… 60 people died of what they called the Bubonic Plague… It was.  There is almost a perfect match between the DNA of the Black Plague organism exhumed, and those found in Madagascar….

Today another plague with a different organism is brewing in Africa.  This one is more fearful than the Bubonic plague… The bubonic plague can be cured with antibiotics… For the E.bola outbreak there is not cure known to man…  If you breathe it, you die… Today, it was announced that the outbreak is out of control.  Beyond all hope of containment…  Today, if it were to spread as fast as the Black Plague did person to person, in days, embedded deep within alive, alert healthy people, it would start arriving upon our shores…. Am even greater fear is that someone brings it here on purpose to punish us, and scatters it through New York and Washington’s subways…

So, there is a good chance that this year, we could experience a pestilence that wipes out mankind.  We’ve had these scares before. And stories told afterward are that we came close to having a full epidemic, but were lucky in catching the carriers as we did….

So this of course is the year 2014…. The Black Plague begin to seriously infect Europe in 1348….. IF you don’t take this threat seriously, then do the math and figure out the span of time transpiring between the two….

 

 

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Photo courtesy of the EPA.

That would be my advice.  Truth is, we quickly make Russia into a demon.  They do the same to us.  If there is anything we have learned over 100 years since the Great War started in August 1914,  it is that going to war, should be the last resort…

Back in the early ’90’s upon being given the privilege to look over the Soviet’s intelligence when Communism fell,  we were shocked that all their aggressive actions were seen in their eyes as defensive moves against possible aggression being planned by us….It is best represented by a young officers story from the cold war.  I’ve long forgotten the source, if it comes up later I’ll tag it in…

But a young officer was in charge of a section of the German fence, and on his first shift, received a request for orders and told the reconnaissance  brigade to go 5 more miles along the fence past where they usually turned around.  They called back to say they’d stumbled on fresh movement of troops being maneuvered to that gap on front line we never had bothered to inspect..  After finding our troops were now outnumbered  by their new response, this young officer ordered another brigade to move up from the south.   That brigade also discovered another large number of troops moving in from the eastern reserves to that same point… The officer began to sweat. Was he witnessing on his watch, in his territory, the beginning of the long-feared invasion of Western Europe by the Soviets?  He called up two more brigades and ordered them to dig in around that point.  The Soviets brought up tanks, and lined them up for an invasion… The young officer then picked up the phone…  Far away, the head of command looked over all the evidence… Finally he gave this advice… Pull your troops out, by ten miles…. he did, and the Soviets pulled theirs back as well.  Ok, came the next order. Resume normalcy.  And soon, everything again was routine….

For those that don’t understand war,  the point of the story was, that the young officer caused the crises.  The whole Russian buildup, was because of him.  He made a move the Russians didn’t understand, and since they didn’t understand, they prepared for an attack. As we brought up more, so did they. They were simply matching our moves… Fortunately someone wise enough to understand that he Russians really didn’t want to go to war, stepped in and averted a possible WWIII start-up incident…

As if on cue, already dumb John McCain is rattling swords and demanding we nuke Moscow.  Soon Lindsey Graham will follow as Tweedle Dumb always follows Tweedle Dee… Likewise, Putin will also have his exact same crowd (probably riding Harleys), his group of idiots, clamoring for war as well…

The Western press has already begin its war talk, leading with the condemnation of the Russian Government…  But really, isn’t that a bit premature?   No one has died.  Far less than anything that happened in Kiev earlier this week….

Let’s wear Putin’s shoes for moment….

What if the predominantly Mexican population of San Diego wanted to be aligned with Mexico instead of the USA, all because we couldn’t get Republicans to pass immigration laws.. What if they gathered en masse in San Diego to protest, stayed, burned down government and private buildings.  What if we tried to make them stand down, and it roused up even more Mexicans to their defense.  What if the Mayor fled to Yuma, and camped out in a sanatorium. …   …

What would the US do.  OUR entire Pacific Fleet rests in San Diego… We would probably act prudently. and move outward to expand our perimeter.  We would probably commander all airports and ship docks in that area in order to be able to land reinforcements if necessary.  We would probably park a couple of gunboats facing the city as an intimidating force reminding the Mexicans we had forces they couldn’t get to, so their behavior should keep that in mind.  We’d probably block access roads leading into the port, so an invasion army wouldn’t be able to charge in unannounced…

Just to play devils advocate, what might happen if we took no action to defend ourselves?  As most Americans are asking the Russians to do? We saw the Mexicans had little respect in town for law and order.  There are a lot more of them than there are of us… What if 10,000 of them just walked on to the base, armed with shotguns, hunting rifles, and a few semi automatics.  What if they boarded all our ships, our subs, and put our sailors at gunpoint into the brig, and announced they were in charge of the Baja Mexican Navy… Now the 2nd largest navy in the world.   What would the US do?  Would we sail into our own harbor as did the Free French and blow what used to be our own ships up out of the water?

Of course the Mexicans would say we are invading their new country.  Of course every Spanish tonged nation South of our border would be condemning us for invading Mexican California… despite the fact that a lot of gringos, maybe even a majority, live around San Diego and support our American troops being there and keeping the masses of Mexicans from turning on them….

Point is, we would ourselves, do what Russia just did...

So how can we condemn them, when we have contingency plans to do exactly the same thing?

There is further evidence this is not like Sudetenland, . One, no one has died. It was a smooth peaceful quiet takeover, textbook by American Standards.   Two, action is isolated to the port and Crimea.  Three,  all evidence points to these actions solely for the purpose of controlling access to the base.

As Americans we would laugh at Europe, Russia, and China telling us to abandon San Diego.  There are a lot of similarities between that and the Russian base. The number one move now appears to be: for the Kiev Ukraine government to insist that the base will forever stay Russian, and guarantee the safety of all Russians living on Crimea… Second, it should state that the current administration insists  there will be no change for those who like having Russians close by. For that select group, there will be only two options.  Life goes either goes on the same; or it gets better.  The third option that it may get worse, is forever off the table.. .

It would be the equivalent of that American young officer calling off his men, and telling them to retreat backwards 10 miles..  it would be the opposite of what happened 100 years ago, where threats begot threats and soon rigid plans took effect and not one leader had the chutzpah to stop it from going forward.  6 million soldiers died, 15 million civilians died, and a whole generation of young men was wiped out.  Girls had to marry men their father’s age.. and in the end  Western Europe’s borders were right back where they were before the whole event started.

Cool heads must prevail.  Of course the McCains will spout off.  They don’t matter.  What matters is that we treat the Russians with respect just as we would like them to do for us, if the shoe were on the other foot and we were fighting the battle of San Diego…..

As the weeks sneak past, the cry of the unemployed becomes fainter and fainter.  It’s official. The Republicans won. They were right; we were wrong. For them, indeed, it was a good political move. They were right. Everyone cares about money saved; no one cares about people anymore, even those suddenly destitute, hit almost without warning.

I guess since there are no stories out there now of what it is like to have no money, the Republican got it right about our concern over the long term unemployed. Those unemployment checks were going to freeloaders and as soon as the money quit, they all got jobs.  At least that is what one would certainly think, from the silence, from the complete lack of stories, lack of diaries, or even lack of pleas to get something moving again on the assisting the unemployed.  It’s like the Republicans said “no”, and that was it… no more long term unemployment… Gravy train—> over… Back to work you scum….

Who would have expected it could have worked out this well?  Certainly no one I know.  We are all shell-shocked that any concern for these fellow citizens has just gone, evaporated. It appears that people are indeed, despite their lip-service, privately tired ot those lazy, cheapskates, mooching off the public dole, and that, though they say “tisk, tisk, you shouldn’t cut them”, there simply is no heart in them anymore to treat people more humanely than say, corporations….

Just out of curiosity over how this could be so, how we could have been so wrong, I wanted to crunch numbers for myself to see if it was true.

It is estimated that there are 4 million workers who are over 26 weeks unemployed. As of December 28th, there were 1.3 million who would lose benefits.   That would be week zero of the crises.  From December 29th through January 4th.  70,000 more were Immediately dropped high and dry. Then the following week, January 5th through the 11th,  another 70,000 tumbled off the roles.. The week following, January 12th through the 18th, 70,000 more…. Last Saturday, saw the grand total rise by another 70,000 people…. We have now gone a full month, at four times 70,000 and have added 280,000 more destitute families to our national roster….  1.58 million families are facing their own personal Grapes of Wrath… In the silence of public outcry, Republicans just laugh and laugh while they swim in the Congressional pool and wipe their clean butts now with clean towels, (now that the sequester and shutdowns are over)….

What’s the effect of all this?  I do Federal Budgets so these numbers are small to me… What’s a million?.  Chump change…  or  1 X 10^-12  or 0.000000000001 of my problems….It is so small it is very hard to visualize the human cost.  It is far easier to visualize the dollars saved.. The initial cut saved approximately . $ 397 million  ($306 listed as the average unemployment check amount)… Each subsequent week that total climbs as 70,000 X $306 or $21,420,000 gets added to the amount the Republicans are saving America….So as of last week, January 25th the chart of weekly savings looks like this….

  • $397 million  as of January 4th
  • $418 million as of January 11th
  • $440 million as of January 18th
  • $461 million as of January 25th.

Total saved America courtesy of the Republicans of the United States of America is… $1.76 billion dollars! Roughly one thousandth of our budget….

The total number of people claiming unemployment benefits in all programs for the week ending January 4 was 3,706,087, a decrease of 1,003,734 from the previous week. There were 5,659,482 persons claiming benefits in all programs in the comparable week in 2013.

Hats off to them.  They saved money by taking care of a problem Democrats were too squeamish to handle.  Why have extended unemployment at all?  There was no where else that money could be saved, and it was time those lazy, useless freeloaders went back to work anyways.   There is no where else to make up that money.

For last month they already let tax breaks expire for college tuitions.  That’s been done; $4 billion saved.. Last month they let teachers writing-off their classroom expenses, expire.  That saved almost a billion.  No mortgage insurance premiums can be now be deducted. That saved over $5 billion dollars.  If you lived in a state with no sales tax, where you used to be able to deduct state and local sales taxes, .. you can’t now. Savings of $16 billion. The mortgage-modification tax break expired… meaning if your home was under water,  and you got relief from a bank, you get taxed on the amount of relief, thousands more than you can afford….  Got to love those Republicans, saving America money..

And of course no one can make changes to these tax breaks... The Cato Institute estimates that direct  federal subsidies to corporations costs taxpayers almost $100 billion every year. Furthermore, the tax code gives corporations special tax-breaks which reduced what is supposed to be a 35 percent tax rate to an actual tax rate of 13 percent, saving these corporations an additional $200 billion annually,,, Likewise, special tax breaks for hedge fund managers allowing them to pay only 15% rate?  (This is the break where the multimillionaire manager pays less of a percentage in taxes than her secretary). Estimates are that this costs taxpayers $83 billion annually and 68% of those who receive this special tax break earn far more than $462,500 per year (the top one percent of earners).

So Republicans are laughing all the way to the bank.  None of their money was touched, and $1.6 billion was saved on the backs of people who apparently live inside the cone of silence… I don’t hear outrage anymore, do you?

After all, what they did all those freeloaders, was apparently a favor. They finally got them off their ass and made them get a job. No lazy asses in a Republican-run world.. Bring on 2014…

They did all get a job, right? No one is saying anything to the contrary, so surely, they all got a job, right? All you have to do is walk up to a business and say, “I need a job” and they give it to you on the spot, right? Of course, right? Isn’t that how it’s done on TV sitcoms? If you need a job, you just go out and get one. Like Drake and Josh? So, everybody is now working, right, except those lazy butts whose long term still has not run out!

Let’s look. Here is the unemployment table for December 2013….

  • A)  According to the BLS 37.7% or over one third of all our unemployed are over 27 weeks…
  • B)  24.4% or one fourth land a job in 4 weeks and start in 5…
  • C)  Another quarter or 24.4% get a job their second month… that’s up to 8 weeks between jobs.
  • D)  The remaining 16% or one seventh of the unemployed, get their replacement job somewhere between the 3rd and 6th month….
  • It is the first third, or 37.7%,  who will lose benefits…. They are the losers….

“These had better get off their sasses, get over to Burger King, and start flipping (cooking) burgers.” (actual statement by Congressman on Budget Committee). So are they?

The advanced number for seasonally-adjusted insured-unemployment during the week ending January 11, was 3,056,000, an increase of 34,000 from the preceding week’s revised level of 3,022,000. The 4-week moving average was 2,939,000, an increase of 31,000 from the preceding week’s revised average of 2,908,000.

What? Unemployment claims are rising? That can’t be. People should be going back to work, not more people getting laid off! How will those long-term people now with no income, courtesy of the laughing House Republicans, get all those jobs they were supposed to walk in, demand, and get? You say there are now even more unemployed?

December’s unemployment for the month, was at a 6.7 %… The last monthly rate below 6.7% occurred in October 2008... the month after Lehman collapsed. (Amazing this Obama)  Unemployment is almost at pre-recession levels. But wait! Something must be wrong… 1 million unemployment claims just disappeared overnight on December 28th… What jobs did they all get? Burger King?

January’s jobs data is embargoed until February 7th…. But based off of December’s estimates, here is what HAS to happen for Republican wet dreams to come true. Over the course of last year, across all of 2013, the ranks of the long-term unemployment declined by 897,000. For Republican dreams to materialize, this month of, January 2014, total employment must rise by 1.58 million workers or by a total equal to all those left unpaid by long term employment…. For the record, that would be a 60% increase in one single month, over the entire past year’s hirings decreasing the totals of the long-term unemployed….

It probably won’t happen.

Since the unemployed usually spend all their check each week, the economy for January just toof a hit of $1.67 billion dollars from the lack of money these unemployed would have spent.. Most of that was felt immediately in retail. Retail just hired 55,000 new hires in December. I hope most still have jobs.

One further factor which sort of smudges up the calculations, making things not so clear cut, … is the the huge number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) which has remained essentially unchanged at 7.8 million through December. These individuals who are working part time because their hours have been cut back or because they were unable to find full-time work.

I expect this to probably be where most of the absorption of the ex-communicated long termed unemployed will be found…..

Now so far, all I’ve talked about is money. But being unemployed is much more. It is about people…Human beings less fortunate than you or I, but, at a moment’s notice, at the whim of a boss and having no protections, we know we could be there too.(let’s hope the swirling rumors over HSBC’s imminent Lehman-sized collapse, aren’t true.)

How does one possibly show the human cost that this Republican obstinance is doing to the optimism, and the pride of this nation, the United States of America? Many of you are too young to remember this image ingrained in us,  but try to imagine a map of the United States of America and that it is under attack by nuclear weapons… When a strike hits, a white circle flashes on the map showing each lost city….

December 28th 2013….. San Diego…… Gone…… 1.3 million people.
January 4th 2014….. Wilmington Delaware…. gone… 70,000 people
January 11th 2014….. Canton, Ohio…… gone…. 70,000 people.
January 18th 2014….. Rapid City SD … gone…. 70,000 people.
January 25th 2014….. Scranton PA…… gone…. 70,000 people.

If these were real nukes dropping on our fellow citizens, launched by a sub-class of our fellow citizens, would we still be as silent, afraid to step out of line and express concern over fear of how we’d look to our corporate bosses and the snitches we work beside, and just shrug off the laughing Boehner and Cantor as they dry off with clean white cotton towels in the U.S House of Representatives members-only pool? I’m worried the answer is yes.

Well, guess what? There is something you can do. Act. Stop waiting. Do something. Act. Phone. Email. Text… Just act and tell your friends to act too.

Addendum: I saw this afterwards… it’s so ironic. After snuggly bashing the Soviets for years (and I was good at it) as being softly inferior to us tough, old capitalists, I with pure admiration today see their progeny in the squares of Ukraine, who won’t accept injustice lying down, who won’t see their dreams arbitrarily squelched, who won’t let something just get taken away from them because that entity is so powerful and distant, it seems senseless to contest it… I see them, and I say… wow, we really suck as human beings.. What is wrong with us?

And then I again see by the pool, Boehner and Cantor, just gaffawing away at us timid Democrats… Oh well. I guess that is how it goes. Sigh.

.

 Potential For Delaware To Have Unlimited Revenue Streams

Got this idea from a thread embedded in one of Steve’s posts.

We know the Racino’s are losing money.  It is because of competition.  Delaware needs a new idea, and Colorado provides the answer…

Of course some will object.   Just like everyone originally objected to the idea of gambling ever coming to Delaware…

Gambling is now so entrenched, it is not only a part of our revenue stream, but its owners get concessions from the state itself at the expense of raises to the state employees.  Soon, state wages will be replaced by scratch-off cards…..

On the other hand, the revenues from marijuana are amazing.  Delaware could pay for one fifth of its state’s educational budget by legalizing and taxing this revenue stream alone.($82 million) However the smart move would be to put all these revenues into an endowment fund for later, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey are sure to follow suit as our fumes cross state lines and infiltrate their state halls….. just as they did with casino’s, and eventually that Delaware’s consolidation on that income stream dries up…. But with an endowment, we can keep the benefit filtering in for decades into the future…. “as far as the eye can see.”

Of course, the first word out of the mouths of those politically connected, would be… “what about our friends, the Racino owners?”

And there’s the rub.  They benefit too….  In what other state can you gamble and smoke weed at the same time?  We’ll have to build new toll lanes just for the traffic trying to get into this state!

As you all know, there are several Supreme Court decisions due this term regarding the ability of corporations or personal businesses to express their religiosity in defiance of the law of the land. One is Hobby Lobby which thinks it should not be required to practice something that is against their religion.  The second is today’s “stay” on whether Catholic Organizations have to dispense something their religion completely disavows;  birth control.

On one hand we will hear the drums of how religion is being imposed upon by the government.   On the other hand we will hear how those employed by these employers, have the right to choice just as do their bosses….

Let us look at the first plank:  how religion is being imposed upon by the government.   As is been oft repeated, the Constitution as originally written said rather little about the right to religion.  However, it IS in the Bill of Rights, which because they were a necessary addition added to get the Constitution garnering enough votes, one can loosely say, the original Constitution deals with religion…

And as is oft repeated with every controversy, the First Amendment states as follows:  Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.   This means that Congress cannot say:  “This year’s official religion will be Pentecostal.  All other religions are hereby abolished”.  This may sound far fetched to us, but was a real factor in the daily lives of the colonists before the nation was forged.   Quakers were ostracized by Episcopalians. Catholics were beset with punitive laws except in Maryland.  If you needed to go before the state or county courthouse, you had to be of that area’s official religion, before you could get heard…  True, dat.

The second part, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; is where the argument will be directed.  Hobby Lobby and the Little Sisters of the Poor, both have similar arguments which are as follows.

“WE  don’t believe sex should be had for enjoyment.  Our religion is anti-sex.  If we have to dispense or are required to pay for people to commit sex without the consequence of pregnancy or a viral AIDS infection, we are having our free exercise of religion being prohibited….”

More clearly put:  our religion demands that we prohibit sex for enjoyment wherever it “pops” up. If you stop us from prohibiting enjoyable sex, you are interfering with our religion.

In the matter of text, they have a point.  If their religion does indeed demand that they stop everyone from having enjoyable sex, then the government in stepping in to stop them from stopping some amazing sex, is depriving them of their religious rights.  So we should conceive that they have a textual point…..  Before the Obamacare, religion was not impinged.  Now it is.

The next step is to see if that point is relevant with the norms of today’s society.  As an extreme case, allowing a quirky religious sect to burn their babies alive because “it is called for by their religion”  would be a case where the harm done to a citizen of the United States of America against their will, would outweigh in society’s eyes the harm being done to the religiosity of those practicing such a barbarity.  Burning witches at a stake would suffice as an example as well.

There is obvious a gray area then where government must trample on religion and religion finds it must interfere with government.

We can use the extreme case above of burning witches.  One could say that happened in Delaware in 2010. (lol.  Our witch got burned bad.)   Here we have a case where one religion (the witch burning one) interferes with the other religion (the witch one).  When you have two opposite religions, the government has to look at other laws other than religion to determine policy.  In this case, murder.  Correct?

So the correct assessment is that since both religious issues cancel each other out, then the factor of murder by default becomes the deciding one.  The witch-burning religion is in the wrong by existing laws on the books (murder) and therefore it must stop its practice.  Was it’s bizarre form of religion impinged upon by government?  Absolutely.  And for good reason; it was murder.

So we now have precedence of  government making necessary impositions upon any religious practices that harm society. Yet there is still no imposition upon ones beliefs.  You can still “believe” that burning witches is your goal in life, but you just can’t carry it out.  It hurts other people.

So the defense of the law by the government must not focus on the rights of these religious petitioners.  but should solely focus on that harm which if allowed to go forward, that religion will impinge upon all those millions of people who are not in either sect, and who will suffer at the hands of any court decision favoring either sect’s quixotic religious preferences.

They have First Amendment rights too….   such as in having our Government abridging the freedom of speech…  

The courts have long upheld that “expression”  was the founding father’s meaning of “speech”.  Porn doesn’t move it’s lips but is a form of expression protected by the Supreme Court.  Just like that Pat Robertson of the 700 Club doesn’t move his lips, but is also considered a form of expression protected by the Supreme Court.  Art is expression.  Music is expression. Love is expression…

Likewise there are reasonable limits to the right to expression, again, determined by society’s norms.  Going nude in a public school is not good.  There are reasons that is against the law.  Playing music too loud on Newark’s Main Street is not good.  There are reasons that is against the law.  Graffiti in the Bank of America building, not good.  There are reasons that would be against the law.

So the argument made before the court will be two fold;  what is harmful or non harmful to each side, and what society’s norms will dictate, whether one or another is extreme when compared to the norm of society….

Therefore this becomes a moral question, not one of logic.  After all, both sides think logic is on their side.  And I think all will boil down to something said by the last Pope, Pope Benedict….

He stated something along the lines, “that people have to eat; and to eat, they have to work.”  If work is  abundant, perhaps one can leave one employer and go to another which they prefer.  But if work is scarce, they are bound to hang on to that job no matter what external factors line up to batter them.   If there is one job in town, and the boss halves the wages, one has to accept it.  If there is one job in town, and the boss demands sexual favors for one to keep it, one has to acquiesce because there is no other alternative.

So for every religious nun or Hobby Lobby business owner who wishes to buck the current law, there are those countless employees working for them who will get hurt if their employer gets any exception to the current law simply because their religion states “it” is against all enjoyable sex.

Those employees working for these bosses, can’t have enjoyable sex because of the religiosity of their employers…. ” I’m sorry Hon, but because I work for Hobby Lobby, we can’t do it for another 15 days… Just hold it inside, will you?”

Their expression, in the privacy of their home,  is impinged…  While yet…the religious owners expression in the privacy of THEIR homes, is not affected by one bit…

Since one side is negatively affected in private by the consequences of not having contraception reimbursed, and the other side is not, it seems imperative that a thoughtful, logical, non-judgmental court, would decide to protect those who are hurt, at the expense of those who are doing the hurting….

Remember:  it is still the insurance companies who are paying for all these sexual items; not the employers themselves;  there is no harm to the employers if this policy goes forward.  They are not in anyway contributing any harm to themselves. Just like if they burned witches….

Those they are affecting, do get harmed….  Not being allowed to enjoy sex because of your luck at being hired by one employer over another, surely trumps whether that employer feels slightly “miffed” that he is required to insure his employees and that insurance will allow them to enjoy the wonders of sex without getting pregnant or getting viral AIDS.

AIDS kills, like being burned at the stake.  Being allowed to stand around the fire going “tsk, tsk” should not become our nation’s definition of what “religion” is all about……

Where This Budget Stands
Courtesy of The Atlantic

This is a good illustration of how compromise works… After the Tea Party’s humiliating defeat, it appears all those left, have thrown their mesh skeletons into the trash can, and to each of their entreaties for redemption…. have given them a collective……

“Forget about it…”

It should hit you hard right now, of just how far back we are from where we’d be if 2010 Tea Party Revolt had never happened………