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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Spiritual home: the rocky Maine coast
Member since: Sun Mar 27, 2016, 08:06 PM
Number of posts: 1,629

About Me

Greetings... what can I say? I'm an old time hippie and anti-war activist from the 60's. I was radicalized then and have always remained political. One's politics can have different aspects. Economically I'm an FDR liberal. Socially I believe in the Ninth Amendment that government has no legitimate power to limit some rights such as responsible drug use, the right to choose, or one's sexual behavior. Politically I'm to the left of the Democratic Party. Why? Over the years I realized the focus of activists should not be stamping out brush fires and putting band-aids on problems. The effort must always be to keep in mind the root of most of our problems such as wealth inequality, growing corporate power, voter apathy, climate change, etc... is an electoral system that is incapable of measuring the popular will and a political system that is incapable of implementing it. Sadly, the Democratic Party seems to need a push to find a greater appreciation for... and to work towards, implementing common sense democratic reforms to both those electoral and political systems.

Journal Archives

Keith Scott: It makes no sense for police to yell... "DROP THE GUN" if there's no gun

Time will tell... but in the shooting of Keith Scott...

I can see where dirty cops might want to plant a gun on someone they killed by accident. But if they are screaming repeatedly at Scott to drop the gun... there's no point in pretending there's a gun as an excuse to just murder him in cold blood... then plant one.

It's very possible that Scott had a gun his wife did not know about. She might have hated guns and Scott may have thought it was necessary to protect his family... or he may have had other issues. So he hid it from her. Who knows.

Time will tell. And until we do see those other videos... coming to conclusions says more about us than what happened.

MUST HEAR: Thomas Frank "Listen Liberal" Podcast!

Thomas Frank's progressive credentials can't be questioned. He is the author of "What's The Matter With Kansas", "Pity The Billionaire" and "Listen Liberal".


How did much of the Democratic Party become the party of the professional class and turn its back on the working class?

In this Alternative Radio podcast Frank explores why Obama saved "capitalism" in a way that didn't restructure it in a progressive way as FDR did.



Of course this isn't "official" anything... but it ties in with an old idea to harness some of that DU energy into something to akin to a "think tank" aimed at some specific issues... in this case what could be some memorable if not devastating zingers for the upcoming debate? I'm sure many of us are old enough to remember Loyd Benson's JFK zinger. Dukakis didn't win in 88... but who knows what points the Dem ticket got from a zinger that deflated that pipsqueak dimwit what's his name... only to have it undone when Dukakis blew a question of whether he'd support the death penalty if his wife were raped and murdered.

Given that Trump is both a loose canon and a moron... I suspect any zingers fall into several categories... something to counter one of his unpredictable rants... countering his evasiveness, countering his lies, countering his immaturity...

Any thoughts?

If Ivanka Weren't My Daughter

This has probably been posted before... but if you've never seen this pic... WTF is going on? Is Ivanka even 15 in this pic?


Being from Massachusetts... I'm am just so goddamn proud of Liz Warren.

Just yesterday there was her grilling of the Wells Fargo perp... and did anyone else see her on Rachel Maddow last night?

Partisan Hypocrisy Is Often Shameless

I debate some rather rabid right wingers on another forum, and for months they've been screaming... without evidence, that the Clinton Foundation (CF) was the Clinton's slush fund. Some go as far as to accuse the Clinton's of stealing from it. They come to this conclusion from the dishonest combination of Hillary's statement that they were "dead broke" when they left the Whitehouse... and bogus numbers that the CF only pays out 7% of donations. Poof! In the minds of the Orwellian Right... the Clinton's have been stealing the money. (Let's sweep under the carpet those financial statements that prove the Clinton's money came from book deals and speaking fees. As for being broke it was because of all of the legal bills leftover from the GOP's attempt to impeach Bill Clinton.)

And yet... I'm sure they are doing everything they can to dismiss Trump's very REAL theft of money from his foundation.


There's always been a sociopathic side of corporate behavior... and if you haven't seen the 2003 documentary called The Corporation... it's still a must-see. https://freedocumentaries.org/documentary/the-corporation

But the corporate form only has the options the governing political system allows. It has several routes to break free... by propagandizing the public/politicians... and through courts decisions.

We could always expect the GOP to side with wealth and business but once these forces became organized in the 70's they needed to further mold the GOP base to buy into the rationalizations needed to justify irrational Reagan's policies. It's not that irrationality has built in limits... it tends to feed off itself... and this is what we saw with the continued radicalization of GOP politicians.

But I can't excuse the Dems. They exhibited a certain amount of cowardice in not standing up for the working and middle classes. By the 90's neoliberalism had a strong foothold in the Democratic Party. Deregulation under Clinton went a long way to set the stage for the 2008 Bush Crash. And we could not expect the Bush Junta to effectively monitor those corporations they so trusted.

I had such high hopes for Obama. How could he not set the nation back on a sane course? And yet, as Liz Warren just said on MSNBC the Obama admin did virtually nothing when the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission made its report. Unlike FDR who signed legislation to reform Wall St in 90 days... it took 18 MONTHS to pass the rather weak Dodd Frank. And Obama refused to prosecute a single Wall St perp.

This is not to beat up on Obama... but an ideology. Getting back to the GOP... I can't help but think the underlying pathology has continued to grow... and combined with Trump's psychosis... have we reached the end stage of capitalism... where corporate behavior and the beliefs of the entire GOP have become so disconnected with the real world that to protect profits they'll destroy their host societies... and perhaps the planet?

LIZ WARREN ON NOW: Rachel Maddow 9:20p EDT

She'll be talking about Wells Fargo

Unconstitutional Abuse Of Patent System?

Business benefits from numerous freebies provided by government which greatly enhance the wealth and power of corporations and their owners... freebies such intellectual property monopolies... patents, copyrights and trademarks. (Doesn't Trump claim his "brand" is worth 3 billion?). Then there's free limited liability protections for corporations which arguably should be purchased as insurance from the private sector. This protects the private wealth in the case of corporate bankruptcies... even if it shafts legitimate creditors.

Of these four only two appear in the Constitution. From Art 1

The Congress shall have Power... To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;

Along with the 2ed Amendment it's one of the few places in the Constitution that states a purpose... both are being ignored.

So is any patent for an idea designed just to create vendor lock, hence profits, and not "progress" therefore unconstitutional? Does abuse of the patent system harm the economy more than promote progress?

I'm not sure if there's a patent involved in this example or not... but assume there is. HP recently created new firmware for their printers so third party ink cartridges would not work after a certain date. Their rational.... to protect their intellectual property.

According to http://www.myce.com/news/hp-officially-responds-pre-programmed-failure-date-non-hp-cartridges-80467/

Now HP confirmed this was intentional to the Dutch public broadcasting station ‘NOS’.

“HP printers reject non-HP cartridges in several cases. This is protect innovation and intellectual property, but also to improve the safety of products for customers” , HP told the NOS in a statement. HP also added that, “the company indeed made changes to the software of several printer types”.

The changes are made according to HP, “to protect the printers and to protect the communication between the cartridge and the printer.”

“Affected printers will continue to work with refilled cartridges if they contain the original HP security chip. Other cartridges possibly don’t work”, HP added.

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