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Thespian2

Profile Information

Name: Ken Attaway
Gender: Male
Hometown: Marietta, Georgia
Home country: USA
Current location: Middle LaHave, Nova Scotia, Canada
Member since: Tue Dec 24, 2013, 11:31 AM
Number of posts: 2,741

About Me

Retired Chairman of the Visual and Performing Arts, Raleigh, NC AB/MA Georgia State University PhD University of Houston Author/writer US Citizen living in Canada.

Journal Archives

Bernie Sanders chosen Turk of the Year...

Cenk named Bernie Turk of the Year because he has changed the political conversation in America...



A note about polling...

From the Guardian UK...Dan Roberts and Mona Chalabi...


But perhaps, like the uncertainty principle in physics, the more an election is scrutinised the more the scrutiny risks interfering. If this interference is compounded by technological shifts making traditional poll methods increasingly unreliable, there could be a far larger threat to the democratic process than simply the free speech of pollsters.


The influence is especially bad if the polls are paid for by political campaigns...

A Note

wanted to say...Started my monthly donation to BERNIE SANDERS today...Don't have much, but must share...got to get this great man elected president...


Bernie Sanders spoke to supporters

via media hook-up...3500 sites, approximately 100,00 people...

Scott Walker mis-ordered a Philly cheesesteak sandwich at Geno's, left his trash behind, and was followed by several signs, one saying "Scott Walker sniffs his own poop."

Did I get those events stated correctly?

A note

to say to all my friends in the Bernie Sanders Group...I hope you had a wonderful 4th of July...Best wishes from your American in Canada...

Bernie on Education

A quick glance at only one of Senator Sanders’ proposals:

Bernie Sanders on Education:

Bernie wants the government to spend $25B to renovate or repair elementary schools. (Sep 2011)

How could the US Congress spend that much money to take care of school buildings when they need to fund endless wars?

From Defense News (March 7, 2012):

“Not only does the Army not need new tanks, it doesn’t need to upgrade the ones it has for another few years, Gen. Ray Odierno, chief of staff of the Army, told lawmakers during a March 7 hearing of the House Appropriations defense subcommittee.

It is one of the most modernized platforms in the Army and has an average age of two-and-a-half-years old, Army Secretary John McHugh said.
The Army plans to finish out its Abrams buy in 2014 and then not begin upgrading its current fleet until 2017.

The Army tried to make the same argument last year, but Congress did not agree. In the 2012 defense appropriations bill, it provided an additional $255 million to buy 42 more tanks. The money was intended to keep the General Dynamics Land Systems’ production line open in Lima, Ohio.”

From The Fiscal Times (July 31, 2014):

“The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is the most expensive, and possible the most error ridden, project in the history of the United States military. But DOD has sunk so much money into the F-35 — which is expected to cost $1.5 trillion over the 55-year life of the program — that the Pentagon deemed it "too big to fail" in 2010.

Now, the Air Force has taken steps to make sure that the unmitigated disaster that the F-35 has become does not happen again.”

I think I see a place where Congress could have found the money to upgrade American school buildings, while creating community work programs which would provide good jobs all across America.

We can’t allow such socialist programs, now, can we? Got to keep the military-industrial complex well-funded…

(My bolding)

Governments will lose sovereignty under TPP.

From the Guardian UK:


"Most international investment treaties and free-trade deals grant foreign investors the right to activate this system, known as investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS), if they want to challenge government decisions affecting their investments. In Europe, this system has become a sticking point in negotiations over the controversial Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) deal proposed between the European Union and the US, which would massively extend its scope and power and make it harder to challenge in the future. Both France and Germany have said that they want access to investor-state dispute settlement removed from the TTIP treaty currently under discussion.

Investors have used this system not only to sue for compensation for alleged expropriation of land and factories, but also over a huge range of government measures, including environmental and social regulations, which they say infringe on their rights. Multinationals have sued to recover money they have already invested, but also for alleged lost profits and “expected future profits”. The number of suits filed against countries at the ICSID is now around 500 – and that figure is growing at an average rate of one case a week. The sums awarded in damages are so vast that investment funds have taken notice: corporations’ claims against states are now seen as assets that can be invested in or used as leverage to secure multimillion-dollar loans. Increasingly, companies are using the threat of a lawsuit at the ICSID to exert pressure on governments not to challenge investors’ actions.

“I had absolutely no idea this was coming,” Parada said. Sitting in a glass-walled meeting room in his offices, at the law firm Foley Hoag, he paused, searching for the right word to describe what has happened in his field. “Rogue,” he decided, finally. “I think the investor-state arbitration system was created with good intentions, but in practice it has gone completely rogue.”


Follow the Long Read on Twitter: @gdnlongread

[link:http://gu.com/p/49jbf/sbl|

Who favours ISDS in "trade" agreements?

Much more at the link...

http://alj.am/hstv


A proposed system between the United States and the European Union that would allow corporations to sue governments has Europeans up in arms. In the EU the system, investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS), was until two years ago understood by only a few — but that changed when a Swedish nuclear energy company sued Germany for $4.7 billion for deciding to phase out nuclear power in the wake of the Fukushima disaster in Japan.

“People felt very strongly that nuclear power should be phased out. They were shocked to see a company could actually challenge something that was approved at the constitutional level,” said Cecilia Olivet of the Transnational Institute, a Dutch social justice organization for scholars, activists and policymakers. The case was settled, and part of the agreement required Germany to ease its restrictions on nuclear power.
ISDS, a relatively obscure system of for-profit arbitration courts that has long been controversial in legal, corporate and policy circles, is catching public attention as it’s poised to become a lot more powerful. In these courts, such as the World Bank’s International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes in Washington, D.C., foreign corporations sue governments over investment disagreements.

…Snip…

Many free trade agreements — including one that the U.S. is negotiating with the EU, the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) — include clauses that require governments to accept the jurisdiction of ISDS courts. The Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade agreement being negotiated among 12 Pacific Rim nations, also includes ISDS. The Office of the United States Trade Representative is pro-ISDS, describing it as a “neutral procedure” that “seeks to provide a law-based approach to resolve conflicts.” The deputy assistant U.S. trade representative for media and public affairs, Trevor Kincaid, declined to comment. Although governments can negotiate to exclude ISDS from trade agreements, high-level European officials, including EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht have said that the U.S. has signalled it will abandon TTIP negotiations if the EU does not accept ISDS.

Cases like the one over nuclear power in Germany sparked protests so widespread in Europe that in June 2013, EU officials paused negotiations about ISDS with the U.S. to conduct a public consultation on whether and how to include it in the trade agreement. The consultation received 150,000 responses — more than any other in EU history — and 97 percent of those were opposed to ISDS.

Notes from the Right Tea Wing Party

https://shar.es/1pdYQZ

Link to video from tea party true believers...low information Repukes eat this stuff for breakfast, lunch, and dinner...as though anything said in the video is true...

Surveillance in America

Read this in Opinions in Al Jazeera America. Americans should be aware of this impending Congressional vote:

"Section 215 is set to expire in June, and it could serve as a litmus test for where presidential hopefuls stand on surveillance. Repeatedly, the bulk collection of Americans’ phone records under 215 has been shown to be overly broad and ineffective at fighting terrorism. Even the NSA debated internally whether the program’s value justifies the damage it has done to civil liberties. If any candidates want to make a strong statement against mass surveillance, making sure Section 215 stays dead would be the way to do it. If they do the opposite, you can be sure they’ll be singing the NSA’s praises all the way to the presidential primaries.

Last year Obama pushed cosmetic changes to NSA surveillance while ignoring most of the recommendations of his own expert panel, which concluded that the 215 program should end because it is illegal, is probably unconstitutional and has not once helped stop a terrorist attack. It underscored just how much Obama has retreated from the strong stance he took against warrantless domestic surveillance while on the campaign trail."

This section should expire...it should never have been passed. Damage has been done.
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