al Qaeda and Iraq – Fly Paper!

July 21, 2014  By Jack Jodell.

Happy Monday, readers! In what is rapidly becoming a start-of-each-week tradition on this blog site, and in association with the superb blog Fair and Unbalanced.com, I proudly present Mr. Burr Deming’s latest podcast, which he narrates below. Just click on this link and have your speakers on:

http://fairandunbalanced.podomatic.com/entry/2014-07-20T04_47_32-07_00                            

BURR DEMINGIn Burr’s very accurate words:

“Al Qaeda had never had any force to speak of in Iraq. There were scattered outposts in largely deserted areas not controlled by Saddam Hussein’s forces. But after the invasion, al Qaeda began to develop a presence. It wasn’t much, but it was more than the zero that had been in Sunni areas before. And it was growing.

So the Bush/Cheney administration went for the spin cycle. The increase in al Qaeda activity was actually a good thing…”

————————————————————————————————————————I remain amazed that the Bush/Cheney regime were able to so thoroughly mislead the public for so long. Cheney and his equally corrupt and lying, arrogant bedfellow Donald Rumsfeld, involved us in a trumped-up war which should never have been fought, and which has nearly bankrupted us in the process.

Bush-CheneyThat entire regime, from Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld all the way down to plunderers-rs-in-chief Paul Bremer and Paul Wolfowitz, to worthless and shoddy attorneys like Alberto Gonzales and John Yoo, are all guilty, directly or indirectly, of deceiving the world and engaging in WAR CRIMES. Each, in their own way, has blood on their hands, and justice demands that each be tried, convicted, and punished severely for the role they played in this wholly unnecessary and wanton spree of murder and warfare!            

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BOYCOTT WALGREENS DRUG STORES!

July 17, 2014  By Jack Jodell.

Greedy, corporate tax evasion has hit one of America’s oldest, and  the country’s largest retail pharmacy chain: Walgreens Drug stores. Begun in Chicago in 1901 by Charles R, Walgreen, the son of Swedish immigrant parents who became a pharmacist. Charles was quite an innovator: he was one of the first drug retailers to feature non-pharmaceuticals as a big part of his inventory, and quickly established inexpensive lunch counters in his stores. As ice cream grew in popularity, Walgreen opened his own ice cream factory, and, by 1922, had introduced malted milk shakes to the country. Walgreen expanded his number of stores relatively rapidly, growing from the one store in 1901 to 5 by 1915 and 20 by 1920. During Prohibition, the chain continued to grow and thrive partly by selling legal prescription whiskey. Today, this pharmacy giant boasts an astounding 8,678 stores throughout the United States and its possessions. The latest Wall Street stock figures show this to be a company with rising revenues and dividends – rock solid. Despite all this, it has been announced that Walgreens may move its headquarters from Deerfield, IL to Sqwitzerland to aoid paying U.S. taxes. The company claims it will save as much as $750 MILLION by doing this.  Of course, while it may then become technically a Swiss-owned corporation, it will continue to make all of its revenue and profits here; will still depend upon  OUR roads and airports to move its goods upon; will still depend upon OUR police and fire departments to protect its stores, yet will avoid all tax liability within this country. This nifty little scheme is called tax inversion, and is completely outrageous!  While corporate predators like Mitt Romney may consider this to be an advantageous shrewd move, in reality it is a slap in the face of every American worker, consumer, and taxpayer!

That is why I am STRONGLY urging ALL Americans to BOYCOTT WALGREENS DRUG STORES IMMEDIATELY, until this greedy corporation comes to its senses and completely drops this plan to defraud the American government and its people!

Let’s all BOYCOTT WALGREENS and teach the greedy corporate schemers there a well-deserved lesson in ethics!                                                        

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GUN SAFETY – THE PERSONAL AMPLIFIES THE PRINCIPLE!

July 14, 2014  By Jack Jodell.

Please listen to the brilliant podcast I just received from BURR DEMING over at Fair and Unbalanced.com. I proudly stand with this enlightened man 100% on this very vital issue.Wayne LaPierre and the NRA: GO STRAIGHT TO HELL WITH YOUR LIES AND DISTORTIONS, you paranoid scoundrels! You have dishonestly reinterpreted the Second Amendment and have perverted it in the process, just to benefit gun manufacturers. You are very poor excuses for supposedly rational human beings. Kindly DON’T fill us full of any more of your nonsense. We’ve had a belly full of it already! :-( Here is the link for a good lesson in sanity.

http://fairandunbalanced.podomatic.com/entry/2014-07-13T19_20_21-07_00

BURR DEMINGHere are Burr’s own comments:

“Most voters, in fact the overwhelming majority of voters, regard gun safety as something that government ought to insist on. The numbers are unmistakable. 

But, while most voters are for gun safety in principle, it is one of many issues. War, environmental regulation, taxes, jobs, Obamacare, and a thousand other issues are also important. Some voters will show up to vote. For some, gun safety will even be the straw that breaks a vote away from a Republican. For enough gun enthusiasts to matter, guns are not an issue in principle. It is a matter of principle. And more. It is an issue that is personal. Very.” 

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https://movetoamend.org/!

July 11, 2014  By Jack Jodell. 

“Corporations are NOT people, and money is NOT Free Speech!”- Commonly accepted modern truth and wisdom - 

The American Republic, first proudly proclaimed in 1776, has undergone many changes since its birth. It has withstood challenges from both within and outside of its borders, from President James Madison’s successful victory over British invasion in the War of 1812, to President  Andrew Jackson’s successful shutdown of the Second National Bank in
lincoln1835, to President Abraham Lincoln’s decisive victory over the pro-slavery and pro-secession forces of  the Confederacy in the Civil War of 1861 – 1865, to President Theodore Roosevelt’s defeat of the robber barons with his trust busting efforts in the early 20th century, to the long overdue and much FDRneeded reforms enacted under President Franklin Roosevelt’s fabulous New Deal programs in the 1930s, to the Nazi and Communist threats running from 1940 – 1991 (under many Presidents, of both parties), to the Civil Rights and Great Society programs launched by liberal Democrats and President Lyndon Johnson in the 1960s, and even others not listed here. In almost all cases,  the forces of fairness, equality, and morality – the progressive forces of expanded individual social freedom – won out and carried the day politically, economically, and socially. 

angry reagan 2Beginning with the presidency of Ronald Reagan in 1981, however, and continuing to this very day,  the forces of regression began to gain influence in American political, economic, and even judicial life. This has unfortunately resulted in a devastating reduction in income as well as economic and political power for the overwhelming 99% MAJORITY of our population! Reactionaries who neither fully understand our Constitution nor the sinister motives of the greediest 1% minority who wish to exploit them and reduce our economic system to feudalism have gathered within the extremist-laden Tea Party and are wreaking havoc. Also,  that odious bunch has successfully infested and now controls the once great (but now fully disgraced) Republican Party.

Libertarians have always exerted some influence in the GOP. They have always opposed too much federal government regulation over private business, and have resisted government intrusion into ordinary citizens’ lives. But this influence over the GOP has now grown malignant and angry ted cruzpaul rdangerous, as extremists like Ted Cruz, Paul Ryan, Darrell Issa, DICK Cheney, and Rand Paul all hold powerful positions of influence or strong voices within this now reactionary Republican Party. Their aim is  to weaken the federal government’s power by all means necessary to establish the absolute supremacy of corporations, the military, and the religious right. The losers in this ongoing and yet upcoming epic battle for the control of this country will be working Americans, artists, the religious left, peace activists, environmentalists, minorities, the poor,  social libertines, women, and a huge number of the 99% MAJORITY  whose incomes or political beliefs do not coincide with those of the greediest 1% minority.

2087958DK336_PowellOn he very crucial Judicial slide, this downward slide can be directly attributed to the efforts of the late Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell, Jr. Originally a corporate lawyer (naturally), this misguided fool laid the basis for the creation of a most unjust Corporate States of America. Like many conservatives and virtually all reactionaries, this man was a paranoid who offered horrible, antidemocratic tactics to be used by conservatives to regain judicial and political control from liberals. Powell was very alarmed by the rise of the New Left during the late 1960s – early 1970s, and he also was obviously uneasy with the growing economic, political, and judicial power being attained by the middle class and poor of that era. He saw labor unions as being far too powerful and a threat to corporate profits. So he drafted a notorious memo, the Powell Memo, which was eagerly devoured and soon put into practice by conservative and reactionary Republicans.  THIS ONE DOCUMENT HAS PROVEN TO BE THE MOST DANGEROUS THREAT TO OUR COUNTRY THAT HAS EVER BEEN CONCEIVED! It advocated increased and heavy conservative, business-friendly input into the nation’s educational system as well as its media, and the appointment of only conservative, business-friendly judges to all available judicial posts nationwide. The Republicans eagerly instituted this idea and put it into practice as widely as they could. Before long, they were actively opposing and even blocking the appointment of as many liberal or opposing judges as they could,  Wealthy, conservative, government-hating news sources (like Fox so-called “News”) came into being and began a constant, endless stream of distorted, nonfactual, and even outright lying news stories to brainwash the public into supporting conservative political candidates who would consistently vote in a pro-corporate, anti-worker capacity. Before long, labor unions were under attack to the point where they all but disappeared from nearly every industry. Corporations began sending American jobs and even entire American factories and plants to slave-wage labor markets outside our borders. Meanwhile, here at home, worker benefits began to disappear and worker’s wages began to fall, all under the very false guise of needing to protect American jobs here at home by enabling the corporations to be more “competitive” on the world market. What utter absurdity! Corporations and their wealthy owners,  boards of directors, and stockholders were even given substantial tax breaks and subsidies, despite the fact that many of them did not need the extra income and were actually illegally shielding their corporate profits from the federal government by hiding them in overseas tax shelters!

Corporate power has grown rampantly since then, to the detriment of all koch brosbut the wealthiest 1% minority. The numbers of corporate lobbyists grew eponentially, successfully rolling back many needed regulations on banking and business which had effectively maintained economic equilibrium since the Great Depression. Safety standards in mines, pharmaceuticals, and other industries began to fall. Air and water pollution began rising, and deadly oil spills began to pop up more frequently. Yet short-sighted opportunists like Phil Gramm, DICK Cheney, and the notorious Koch brothers all kept pushing for, and were largely successful in, obtaining even more deregulation.

ARMEY2Arch-conservatives and government-haters like Dick Armey and Fox “News” teamed up to create and popularize the extremely destructive Tea Party. In the off-year congressional elections of 2010, this deadly force, acting much like killer bees, successfully got rid of large numbers of much more sensible and moderate Republicans by targeting them in primaries, and captured control of not only that wretched party, but also the U.S. House of Representatives. That year, Republicans also captured a lot of state legislatures and governorships, and immediately began redistricting and gerrymandering so as to ensure they would remain in power as long as possible.  These relentless extremists also began to obstruct any effort made by liberals or Democrats to pass any legislation at all, effectively installing a de facto one party rule throughout much of our elected government. Seemingly overnight, they have destroyed our American democracy and have transformed it into  a blatant CORPOCRACY. Nice going, Lewis B. Powell – what an absolute moron you have turned out to be! You were so worried that leftists would destroy our republic – look at the wreckage your cherished “conservatives” have wrought! Your efforts have ruined opportunity for average Americans; have created a record disparity in wealth; and have robbed us of individual freedoms by aiding the rise of a vastly overbloated military / industrial complex and “national security” apparatus. These are NOT healthy developments in our country: rather, they are destructive and antidemocratic by their very nature!

2 corporatist supreme courtOnce the conservative / reactionary types had established a working majority on the Supreme Court (effectively turning it into the Extreme Court), they began issuing a load of pro-business, anti-worker, authoritarian and activist decisions. They ignored past precedent and began twisting long held constitutional beliefs to fit their own narrow ideological mold. Their most sordid effort was the preposterous Citizens United ruling, which declared that money is free speech (though even a child could tell you that corporations are NOT individual people  and spending money is NOT the same as exercising free speech)! This insane decision lifted almost all restrictions on campaign donations by corporations and the wealthy. In one fell swoop, this Extreme Court had destroyed the longstanding notion of “one man, one vote” and ensured that we will be plagued with a torrent of one-sided, pro-corporate political advertising for the foreseeable future. It also assured that our government will remain corrupt and bought-out in favor of big business. ,An equally sordid Extreme Court decision was the recent Hobby Lobby ruling, which basically granted corporations a right of noncompliance with  federal statutes based on the corporation’s alleged religious convictions, as if these greedy, self-centered entities had any real religious convictions at all!Whatever became of the long-observed precedent of maintaining a separation of church and state? Obviously, this modern, activist  Extreme Court views that time-honored practice and precedent as being outdated and wholly irrelevant…

But, my friends, I am happy to report that we in the 99% MAJORITY have not yet lost the fight to restore democracy in this country and get the money OUT of politics for once and for all time!

In reaction to these most flawed Extreme Court  rulings in its history,  a relatively new organization has sprung up to get these preposterous decisions nullified. It’s called MOVE TO AMEND.ORG, and it is actively advocating the adoption of a new Constitutional amendment stating that corporations are NOT people and that money is NOT free speech. I strongly urge you to visit its website at https://movetoamend.org  and contribute to this noble and vital  effort. For if you don’t do ,so, the America we all grew up with could very well disappear forever! 

We cannot allow this reactionary, corporatist Extreme Court to succeed in its attempt to reinterpret the Constitution along radically backward-looking ideological lines! One thing we MUST do is VOTE this November and not only unseat all the Tea Party types, but also replace them with new, forward-thinking progressive candidates! Money and far-right, government-hating ideology MUST be removed entirely from our politics, and only WE, THE PEOPLE, can achieve this through voting and supporting Move to Amend.Org!                 

In the words of Thom Hartmann, “democracy is NOT a spectator sport; it depends on YOUR active participation!”               

Posted in corporate greed, economics, extremists, Politics, Tea Party, Tea Party-infested reactionary Republican Party, Tea Party-infested reactionary Republicans, the 1%, THE MAJORITY 99%, Thom Hartmann, very activist Supreme Court, wealth disparity | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

NEW NEIGHBOR PRINCIPLE: HAVE ANY MASSIVE EXPLOSIVES ON HAND?

July 9, 2014  By Jack Jodell.

BURR DEMINGIn association with the excellent blogsite Fair and Unbalanced.com, I am happy to present the creator of that site,  BURR DEMING’s, latest podcast below, (Burr is pictured at left).  Click on the link at bottom and hear Burr’s fabulous take on an obscure Texas law regarding possession of explosives. Burr writes: “Greg Abbott is not just the Republican candidate for governor. He is also the Attorney General of Texas. He ordered state agencies, including the State Health Services Department to no longer release any information on vast amounts of chemicals corporate neighbors are storing, including explosives.

Attorney General Abbott came up with what you might call the New Neighbor Principle. Residents can drive around a neighborhood, knocking on the doors of friendly business owners, and simply ask what hazardous substances, including chemicals and explosives, they store. 

A Texas law requires companies to furnish information about certain hazardous substances. But there is a twist.”

http://fairandunbalanced.podomatic.com/entry/2014-07-08T20_25_55-07_00

UP NEXT: A WAY TO NULLIFY CITIZENS UNITED!                                                     

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CAN MISSING E-MAIL MESSAGES BE DEFENDED?

July 7, 2014  By Jack Jodell.

BURR DEMINGIn association with Fair and Unbalanced.com, I am happy to present that website’s own BURR DEMING (pictured at right) along with his latest podcast. To hear it, click on the link below. In Burr’s own words:  “We’ve heard the excuses. Can we defend all those lost emails? Well, yes, actually.”
                                                  

http://fairandunbalanced.podomatic.com/entry/2014-07-01T18_43_10-07_00

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2014 HEAD AND HEART AWARD!

July 3, 2014  By Jack Jodell.

Those who follow this blog regularly know I have had the tendency to focus on many of the problems our country faces as well as on those whom I believe have helped cause those problems, either through their actions or inaction. I have done so to draw attention to the many flaws we have here in America, in hopes that improvements will someday be made. I will continue doing so on a regular basis.

Every year near year’s end, I post an annual December feature, which I call “Santa’s Bozo of the Year.” It highlights some of the fools and clowns in public life whose antics were so outlandish that they were deserving of ridicule. In a similar fashion each spring, I take an opposite approach and do a different annual feature, which portrays an individual of today or yesterday whose contributions to humanity and/or our country have been so spectacular, courageous, and/or noteworthy that they should be lauded near and far as good examples of what we as humans can achieve, if we only put our minds and hearts to it. After all, not everything going on in the world is doom and gloom. So here is the sixth installment of this annual mid-year feature I call the “Head and Heart Award.” Past recipients of this award have been ROBERT REICH, NICK HANAUER,  VAN JONES, KEITH OLBERMANN, and MOTHER TERESA. Individuals featured  here have used their head and heart to produce great things for humankind, and have shown themselves to be beacons of light in an often vast sea of darkness. These persons should serve as an inspiration to us ALL to actually DO something –  to take a principled stand - using OUR heads and hearts on behalf of our fellow brothers and sisters, rather than simply sitting back complacently enjoying the relatively good life we have experienced here in the United States.  This year, I am a little behind schedule in presenting this award, and I apologize for my uncharacteristic lateness. Also, I have chosen TWO recipients of this year’s award, both of whom are equally deserving. I am proud to announce them as being :

BURR DEMING1). BURR DEMING, the St. Louis-based creator of an amazing blog called Fair and Unbalanced (see my blogroll at the lower right of this page).  Mr. Deming writes with uncanny insight and sensitivity, and has always taken a gentlemanly approach to dealing with those whom he disagrees with politically or economically. He often laces his articles with a deft sense of wry wit. Wisdom and careful deliberation abound in his writings. The man is a true gem, whose observations and lessons taught can often leave the reader in awe. He has undertaken to nasrrate a number of his posts into podcasts, and I am proud to say a good number of them will be appearing here in this blog in the future. If you haven’t already done so, check out his superb writing over at his website, and be sure to catch his excellent podcasts here as they appear. Our world is definitely a much better place with thoughtful contributions from this gentleman  in it, and I am very happy to be associated with him!

gwen barry2). Based in Lake Worth, FL, and only a stone’s throw from the lair of that nefarious purveyor of darkness, dishonesty, and evil known as Rush Limbaugh, is the gleaming beacon of light, reason, and truth known as GWENDOLYN HOLDEN BARRY. This remarkable woman is a relentless activist who is dedicated to bringing knowledge and scocial consciousness to the world through her many varied endeavors.  She is the regular host of Here Be Monsters: The Sunday Show, an online radio intelligent talk show (which I and F. Wayne Johnson often co-host with her)  that  can be heard for one hour most every Sunday from 6 -7  PM Eastern time on BlogTalkRadio (http://www.blogtalkradio.com/here-be-monsters). This site also has an archive section where you can actually listen to past shows in their entirety. The call-in number to participate is 213-816-0357.  ALL are encouraged to call-in and participate!                  

Gwen is also quite active in dozens of other progressive causes, including environmentalism, racial and gender equality, economic justice, climate change, the anti-nuke movement, the Commons Project Network (http://www.thecommonsprojectnetwork.com/), Bridge the Gulf, plus many, many, MANY others. She is an ongoing contributor to that outstanding progressive website Roundtree7 (http:///www.roundtree7.com/),  and is a regular follower of such progressive icons as Amy Goodman and Naomi Klein,  to name but a few. She is very active in progressive chatrooms on Facebook and Twitter and has made a great number of fiends nationally and internationally using those increasingly important social media tools. She probes and inquires in her quest to bring knowledge to the social consciousness by watching RT television and constantly combing the internet for relevant, breaking news stories.Wherever there is a hand to lend for a just cause, you’ll find Gwen Barry there, ready and willing to aid the cause. Her head and heart have been in the correct place for a very long time, and that is what makes her more than worthy to share in this year’s Head and Heart award!  

I am really happy to be associated with both of these fine individuals, and consider them to be true friends as well as shining examples for us all to follow. I offer them to you as genuine patriots who definitely care about not only their country, but also about the world and their fellow humans in general. As we all celebrate this year’s Independence Day, let us reflect upon and even emulate  Burr Deming and Gwen Barry, and recognize that each is a beautiful example of what this country can and should produce!  

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