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Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Of Pigeons and Pirates

Smoketown Pigeons

Early in the morning,
Smoketown sleeps at last!
But the pigeons from their eyrie
Come and go seeking their repast.
 
From their Hilltop keep.
They stand watch in their tower
All the town do they see.
But the only thing on their little minds
Is where their next meal may be.
 
The Tower is their fortress
Its bell is painted white
In flocks they come and go.
Dancing in the air!

Christopher H Holte‏ @CHHolte 7/26/2017

Note: Had to share this before I forgot it!

Pirates Bones

The pirates will come and go
Leaving whale bones mouldering on the beach
With bones of ships & men
 
Their treasure is an illusion
Vanishing in black smoke
Only trinkets of idle scrimshaw
To tell the tale of men and sail.
Treasure Gone!
 
They hunted beheameth to near extinction
Then dug the soil seeking His remains
Reveling in gushing poison
Building empires built on oil!
 
In the ancient game of piracy
The captain's crew comes to town
Promising ease and riches
Spreading paper all around!
Their promises are lies
 
And those who see their invisible cloth
Find a knife in an alley way.
While the glamoured masses scoff
"It can't be other than a new great day!"
 
But their promises are hollow
Their king a glibe practiced grifter
Soon they've robbed the town naked
And depart, seeking riches swifter!
 
Dead men tell a mournful tale
Broken bones, evidence of disease.
Nature recovers but remembers
The land mourns lost virginity.
Rachel weeps.
 
And animals make their homes
In the ruined bones
castles of extraction
Become pigeon eyres.
Smoketown sleeps
Dreaming disturbing nightmares.

Christopher H Holte‏ @CHHolte 7/26/2017

I had two different thoughts here that kind of meshed in a fugue of analogy. One was from watching the pigeons in my local Church. The other is the pressing weight of our American History.

"Deep State" B.S. And Reality

Conspiracy Mongering "The Deep State"

In reading a book by Mike Lofgren titled "The Deep State," I didn't have high expectations for clear argumentation, despite the blurb claiming that Lofgren was encouraged to write the book by Bill Moyers. Sure enough reading it, it's the same kind of bait the base and blame the usual suspects playing out, except Mike is attacking the establishment! Mike manages to mix into a conspiratorial stew the forces of the media, bureaucracy & government, mixing left and right conspiracy stories to create a completely incoherent narrative.

"Bill Moyers! What were you thinking! I thought you were a progressive?

Anyway, the book became a textbook for both the far left and the far right. It was a text for Jill Stein, Bernie Sanders and the Trump Campaign. Which is why I waded through it in the first place.

This essay is at Bill Moyer's Website:

http://billmoyers.com/2014/02/21/anatomy-of-the-deep-state/

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Trump Wants Chaika!!!

Yesterday I made the quip that Trump doesn't want a US Style DA. He doesn't want Sessions!

#Trumpenführer wants Chaika!

With the revelations that Natalia Veselnitskaya and other Russians who met with The Trump campaign on June 9th 2016 were working as proxies for Yuri Chaika. You should have heard a mike drop. But you didn't. That was bad enough but then Trump goes to the G20 and has a two hour meeting and a one hour meeting with Putin. Witnesses describe them as having a merry time. That all was worse.

Well today he confirmed that that is what he wants! He spent the evening yesterday criticizing Jeff Sessions for doing his job and for not ending investigations into him, like he was hired to do! Trump wants a General Prosecutor, who will persecute and lock up his enemies, and never, never, look into corruption inside his administration!

Randi Rhodes says he's a schmuck, чмо, she used a different translation, but it's all the same. I'd use stronger language to talk about #Trumpenführer!

Well Who is Chaika???

Torture and Death
Pussy Riot on Chaika

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Bernie Sanders and Russian Kompromat

I still, kinda sorta, like Bernie Sanders. But he revealed himself to be no Saint Bernard during the election, and so I'm a little alarmed with some of his behavior as he's got a one tracked mind and for other reasons. Last night my suspicions about one piece of the election were confirmed. Though I don't expect him to ever admit it.

Listen to Segment near end of broadcast at Segment 8:37 Pm [ET] 7/18/2017:
http://www.msnbc.com/all-in/watch/sanders-trumpcare-fail-is-victory-for-american-people-1002975811547

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Drip Drip Drip And A Fraudulent Election is unmasked

Donald Trump is essentially admitting he worked with the Russians.

While the Russian Interference Affair is just the tip of a Vote Suppression, hacking, massive official fraud going on, this fraud is far more than just "opposition research." It threatens the survival of our republic's Democratic features. Increasingly, with the help of databases of personal information and unlimited money for buying politicians, We have people who think they can buy our elections with impunity.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Gresham's "law" versus Sovereign Money

One of the primary historical obstacles to complete economic stability, sovereignty and harmony historically has been the difficulty in economies of the people and their government to establish and hold control over their money supply. The concept of Modern Monetary Theory tries to delink money as a trading tool and measure of value from money as a commodity. However this is only possible in the modern era because the banking system has already done this. For years the so-called "Gresham's law" made it difficult for countries to control their money supply. If countries minted money on cheap coins, merchants would refuse to use them. If they did use them, they would hoard gold and silver and the value of the cheap coins would fall. If they rested their money supply on Gold or Silver by weight, the wealthy would export, hoard, or exploit those commodities as a tool over others. As long as local people are subject to the power of international oligarchs and monied person, disruptions in economics will continue.

For more on this read Robert Mundell's:

Uses and Abuses of Gresham's Law in the History of Money
http://www.columbia.edu/~ram15/grash.html

I go into detail about this in my post:

Gresham's law as a tool of regulation
http://www.columbia.edu/~ram15/grash.html/dd>

Mundell writes:

"The great international currencies--shekels, darics, drachmas, staters, solidi, dinars, ducats, deniers, livres, pounds, dollars--have always been "good" not "bad" money."

"Good money" means that the money is redeemable, holds it's value, and is stable. Not that it is of gold or silver. Mundell also says:

"Bad coins will drive out good only if a change occurs to bring about an excess supply of money. An excess supply of money could result because of a decline in the demand for money. If this occurred in a closed economy, prices would start to rise and the value of the best coins as metal would be higher than their value as money, with the result that the best coins would be withdrawn from circulation until the excess supply of money had been eliminated. If, on the other hand, the economy were open to trade with the rest of the world, the good coins would be sent abroad until the money supply were reduced to its equilibrium level."

Read his article.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Gresham's law as a Tool of Regulation

Assumption that Commodity Money is "Good Money"

Gresham's law assumes that that more valuable commodities, when used as money, are the "better" money than less valuable commodities. When commodity money is used for trade the more valuable commodity will be driven out of the market. Thus when Gold and silver are both as money, Gold coins tend to disappear first, then silver coins, then copper and paper money. This law is based on the predicate that valuable commodity money is "good money" and that other forms of money are "bad." People have acted on this assumption, and the assumption that money is real wealth, for hundreds of years, and it has led to incredible mischief.

Good Money is really money in circulation backed by the general stock of goods and services it can buy. Gold and Silver are portable commodities that can be used as money. If the economy & rule of law tanks, Gold or silver aren't worth much to starving people, either. Gresham's law is true, but that doesn't imply Gold and silver are always "good money." The General principle is that people tend to hoard portable wealth.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Black Propaganda against Democracy

What Happened In Kansas and the Country?

I wrote this almost a year ago, when I thought we might have a chance of pulling off an improved political climate. Then the Trolls Elected Donald Trump. I was going to add links and mostly leave it alone. But now I realize I can't just do that.

We progressives should be happy right now. We are mostly united and we should be united.

Last year I was saying:

"We should be beating Donald Trump hands down right now. This election should be a certain thing. Yet many of my friends, and former friends, are spreading garbage arguments, with the hash tag #NeverHillary. They are spreading stories about how Hillary "committed election fraud, is corrupt, took bribes when she worked at the State Department, is a War-Monger, etc..." Most of these myths are exaggerations, misinformation or outright lies. Yet they get wide currency. It makes me ask the question?

What is the matter with the Progressive Movement?"

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

What Really happened with the 1992 "Hillary Care" and Bernie

HealthCare should be a Basic Right and its' Service A Utility

Ultimately Healthcare should already be a basic right. It would be except the Right Wing pushes back against treating Health Care as a Basic Right. Not helping is the Left insisting on imposing pure socialism modeled on the Soviets and thinking this can be done by fiat.

We moderates believe it can be established by working with both left and right via incremental, strategic change.

In 1992 Bill Clinton was elected and instantly branded as a "neo-liberal" by the left for believing we could work with the Right. The result was that "the perfect became the enemy of the Good" and his initial efforts to establish Universal Health Care were defeated in his first year in Office. Both Ted Kennedy and Bernie Sanders gave a stiff shoulder to Hillary Clinton's efforts to get it passed and a combination of events blocked Bill's Bill from passing. There has been a lot of disinformation Since.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Charlatans, Dominionists, Fanatics! And Russians???

Religion in his world has always been dominated by Charlatans and Fanatics. Typically the Charlatans pose as holier than thou folks who can speak for God, and stir up fanatic followers. Their sociopathy and/or narcissism appeals to those who want to be told what to think and believe. Those who fear their own shadow, and those who are otherwise angry and deeply frustrated. In the United States, our religious right used to be deeply fanatically anti Russian. Then the Russians shed Bolshevism, collapsed, turned into a kakistocracy of oligarchs and re-emerged as an ultra-right nation. The Socialist paradise became a hell. The state melted away into a merger of Mafia and Oligarchy. And our Right Wing found a love affair with Russian Spies and a Bromance with President Putin.

And since fanatic authoritarian religious people are used to being led by Exploitive, Manipulative, Amoral & Dishonest Narcissists, who cynically tell them what they want to be they found Donald Trump and turned him into their King David or Cyrus the Great! [Franklin/Trump]

Putting the "d" into the Democratic Party

Implementing Electronic Democracy

Fixing our Democratic Party Is how to strengthen the Party

Tom Hartmann made the statement a few years ago during one of his programs about the need to:

"weaken the parties and strengthen the people.*"

On the contrary we need to strengthen our political party system in order to empower the people.

The Democratic Party was created out of Democratic Societies or Clubs that represented the interest of common people against the then centralizing interests of the Federalists who created the Constitution we operate under, partly with an interest in weakening the power of common people. This battle became a tug of war between party and leadership interests, the country's interest and that of party or leadership. To bring all this together requires structural form. The way the party is constituted and operates is as important as who is involved. The current Key Issue Gaps in both our party and our country are:

  1. Selection and Vetting Process for Candidates
  2. Vetting, Review and Accounting Process for Officers
  3. The way we identify and Track Issues
  4. Our Weakened Press and Speech capabilities.
  5. Our weakened deliberative Process.

Little "d" in the Democratic Party

All these issues are tied to one another. And all of them can be addressed with threshold kludge fixes and by setting an objective to make more permanent fixes to our charter and constitute a more just society that addresses those issues. Ultimately they need to be addressed permanently with a Second Bill of Rights, but as a Democratic Party, we can institute many of these changes as a party. Thomas Jefferson did this when he constituted the Democratic party in the first place.

We Democrats win when we;

  1. fight to make our party inclusive and that our leaders represent us.
  2. Organize so that people are involved in every election top to bottom.
  3. Organize electronic democracy and provide social & official communication between candidates, representatives & general members.
  4. Use electronic democracy as an informal tool in decision making.
  5. Use the Chapter, Club and member organization system to provide diverse yet inclusive leadership backup and local participation.
  6. Make people feel this is "our Democratic Party" instead of seeing it as some tool of corporate interests.
  7. Stop talking about "those Democrats" and start using we and us.
  8. Articulate our ideas, concepts, democratic and non-violent strategies and legislative principles.
  9. Recruit people of all faiths and beliefs.

What we need to do is to:

strengthen the Democratic Party and its democratic attributes so that the people will be strengthened

Parties like the Democratic party exists in order to serve their members and to give us the power to be stronger together, and has so since the beginning of the country. Since the party is a big tent and contains all sorts of interests, from ones that are powerful with or without a party, to others who are only powerful when they work with others. The purpose of letting the party have clubs and other semi permanent sub groups is to channel all that information and energy to running the country sanely.

Ultimately we would have a system where the Republicans were run similarly and the country as a whole run justly as a result.

The Democratic Party as a Networked Utility

The Democratic party is US. And our leaders are our standard bearers, not "them", or they need to be replaced. We have to have officers to run the party and those officers should probably be prohibited from also being candidates or running for election. This would be a major change, but it would deconflict the primary process and prevent the kind of games that lead the personal ambitions of politicians to over-rule the function and health of the party. The Democratic party has to be run as a democratic utility.

Centralized Issue Tracking and Bottom up Information Flow

The purpose of organizing the IT centrally is to keep well ordered control over how those groups debate and work together. They need to be free to work out their differences. But there need to be rules to minimize trolling and oppressive bullying.

We are going to have internal struggles, and one of the purposes of an institution like the Democratic Party is to moderate and officiate/adjudicate these internal struggles through the candidate selection system and primaries. There has to be vigorous debate to achieve true unity and consensus. Fake unity is when 51% permanently decides or minorities stop debate. Real unity is achieved through relentless deliberation and parliamentarian participation.

Better Primary process

The Primary process should be about identifying, vetting, training and fostering candidates for public office.

As a party we should train everyone in civics and legal issues, broadcast pertinent information, record issues, and moderate the debates between candidates.

Primary Vetting

Anyone should be able to throw their hat in the ring for public office. But when they do so as Democrats we should require them to sign a contract with the People to:

  • Testify on their background and fitness for office, preferably under oath.
  • Provide documentation of their fitness, criminal and civil record for review by a review panel
  • A review panel should have the power to issue a report on their fitness an qualifications. No more.
  • The Review panel should also moderate debates and get candidates to commit to plank and campaign promises, on the record.

Primaries

Once all the candidates are done debating etc... the Party should provide a report & summary of the debates, with objective information, and leaving out the personal feelings of the reporters.... to the people in the party who will vote on them. Then the voters can make informed decisions about who to select to be a candidate for elected office. This can be replicated at State and National level. Candidates for State Office should be vetted by representatives from around the State. Local Candidates locally.

Presidential Campaigns

Presidential candidates By representatives from around the country. Debates should be held in each subdivision that the candidate represents. The process should be longer the larger the representation. My opinion is we should elect Presidential candidates on a Single Primary Day after they've debated around the country. But the exact rules should be set by the Democratic party at an annual convention. There is value to making them visit each State. There should be a debate in each State.

Performance Accounting

At the end of each elected or appointed term of office, there should be an accounting audit. First auditors should examine the economic behavior of the Officer for appropriateness and financial rectitude and create a report. Next a panel should examine the record of the candidate against his campaign promises and interactions with lobbyists and special interests. That panel would also look at the audit report. If the officer wants to run for new or re-elected office, that panel report should be a public record going into the vetting for the next election. The panel should also have the ability to refer such reports to prosecutors.

Internal Officers And Clubs

Each sub-division of government in the United States should have a formal subdivision of the Democratic Party with everyone living in that subdivision having a right to participate. [this is pretty much already the case] Officers should be elective and serve a term that ends with an election and a Party Convention. The Party conventions should be televised and offer virtual participation. Party Officials should be prohibited from being elected officials. In addition to these the Democratic party should have Democratic Clubs to represent all the various subgroups of our party: women, liberals, conservatives, youth, minorities etc... These should also have elected officers, but membership should be fluid. Elected Club Officers should have the power to moderate discussions. The Democratic party membership should be open to all declared Democrats. The rules should be standard and National clubs encouraged to have chapters and recursive subchapters. The Clubs would provide news, two way communications and have access to a tool for tracking issues, debates, policy and legislative proposals. Most of this should be transparent to everyone. Candidates could create campaign Clubs with even more fluid rules. The purpose of this is to promote debate and two way communications. Information should be pushed up to national officers on national issues.

Reconstituting a Free Press

Unfortunately the Press is being oppressed or disappearing in much of the Country. The Democratic party should have a built in Press Feature. Members of the Press should have some rights and responsibilities. There should be a volunteer press, and a certified press. The Press should be subject to some standards of objective reporting and these should be determined by the members of the Press itself. The Press would be a special Democratic Club. They'd have a responsibility to record & report on:

  • All meetings, activities, legislation and policies of the Government in their Area of Jurisdiction
  • Any legal or social matter of their choosing, of interest to the general public.
  • All Democratic Party deliberations should be reported on and/or broadcast.

The Certified Press should be cleared to listen in on "private matters" of the Government as background information. Members of the Press should have the ability to Join the Press freely. Certification should be granted by the Press Club. They should be sworn to embargo time sensitive information, and to keep confidences on sources and confidential information, and follow basic Press Ethical rules created by the club. The punishment for breaking such confidence would be loss of certification initiated by the parties who agreed to share confidence with them. Their colleagues would have the power to restore certification via panel. But mainly both Certified and Volunteer press would be given a broadcast medium for Stories. Maybe through a deal with groups like the AP. Maybe the Dem Party having it's own network.

A Free Press is absolutely necessary to investigate matters such as corruption. Vetting and Accounting panels would have certified Press members monitoring them. The Party would be required to let certified Press sit in on meetings. Eventually the formal government would use similar procedures. WE should be broadcasting Government proceedings as a rule and private meetings should be an exception for time sensitive matters.

Improved Deliberative Process

The purpose of all this is to bring an improvement to our deliberative process. Members of the party should have the power to influence the plank that candidates run on and enforce that they represent members rather than special interests, often outside the party. Improved deliberative process is also served by setting up the Club and Party System with media built in.

Kludges

If the party doesn't do this, we can build some of this informally. We already have democratic groups on facebook and similar. The risk is that Facebook is a private for profit organization that is not exactly democratic. That is why we need to build the infrastructure I'm talking about.

Further Reading

Related Posts

Note, this post draws on previous posts, but also refers to them. All these were inspired by wanting to throw a shoe at Thom Hartmann*

Vetting and Accounting for Democratic Candidates And Officers
Implementing Democratic Subsidiarity
Lessons from Organizing for America
What Electronic Democracy Means
A More Effective Democratic Infrastructure
Definitions Related to Democratic Republicanism
Principles of Federalism
"Demos" in the Federalist Papers
Lakoff & building a Party that can be all it can be
http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2017/06/a-more-effective-democratic.html
http://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2016/06/it-takes-party-it-takes-movement.html
Critical
The Trouble with Bernie Sanders
If the DNC (tries to) Rig the Primaries they risk the election

*Note, they didn't rig the primaries, but that was a concern. This is here because of Project Ivy

Our Democratic Movement is not a Totalitarian Movement
The Paranoid Left's insane demonology
Wonky
Community Policing and Democratic Subsidiarity
Organizing Local Democracy around the Post Office

Appendix note:

I had reruns of Thom Hartmann I was listening to a couple of years ago. He started talking about the need to "weaken the parties and strengthen the people.*" My immediate reaction was that I emphatically believe that is demented! (fortunately he later started talking about the need to participate in the party). As long as we see "the Democrats" as "them", we'll keep losing. The Democratic party is US. And our leaders are our standard bearers, not "them", or they need to be replaced. I started to draft a series of articles then as I thought about how you go about strengthening a party and putting the little "d" into the Democratic party, effectively. I wrote that series of posts. But the more I read and wrote, the clearer I got on what was needed. But it all comes back to the same vision. I also lost interest in Thom's show. I still feel so close to him in some ways, but I think he's off track on others. I learned a lot from him. But it was time to move on.

* I just wanted to throw a shoe at the TV. But I would have broken it, so I just fired up my blogger instead. About half the list above were inspired by that shoe.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Blaming Democrats for the Ukraine Revolution

Using Propaganda to Justify Invasion

I didn't realize we were being played with Russian propaganda when it began. I know enough about the Shoah (Holocaust) and World War II, to know that the Ukrainians, BeloRussians and other East Europeans were not saints when it comes to nationalism and nativism. So when there were upheavals between Russo-phile and Nativist Ukrainians, I was inclined to be sympathetic to the Russo-philes. But then I saw this was propaganda.

But when I dug I realized I was being too simplistic. Both Russians and Ukrainians have a mixed history. And the Russians perpetrated atrocities on Ukraine during the Soviet Era that were as traumatic as what nearly the entire of Eastern Europe did to their Jewish and Gypsy populations (extermination and expulsion). When the Russians started putting out Stories of Ukrainian atrocities, I soon found that they were mostly exaggerated and were basically propaganda. This post is based on material I gathered explaining the parallels between the Hillary Campaign and the 2010 Ukrainian Election.

https://holtesthoughts.blogspot.com/2017/02/parallels-between-2010-ukrainian.html

Framing, Diversion, Deflection and Trial Balloons!

Friday, July 7, 2017

Effectively Taxing corporations

Thomas G Shearman Advice on Taxing Corporations

Until fairly recently most Federal Revenues came from Corporate taxes rather than Income Taxes. The clever grifters, operatives and pirates of the 1970s, noted that corporate taxes were levied once, and then recipients had to pay a second tax on their dividends and used that argument to claim that people were being "taxed twice." Since on the face of it that seemed true, congress in it's immense wisdom, greased by lobbyist money, started cutting the corporate tax. But there is another way to look at corporate taxes, and also another way to levy them, and that is what this post is about.

It Takes a Movement -- Moral Mondays Making Change Work

Create Movement Centers
Create Safe Places
Institutionalize these
Organize the Organizers
Collaborate and Work Together
Generate and Sustain Resources
Train and educate everyone
Recruit and take action

Fighting Austerity Through Fixing the Central Bank

The International Monetary Mess

If we understand what is going on we can address our problems and those of the rest of the world. The Website "Against Austerity" goes into these subjects fairly well. So rather than repeat I'll critique some of their points.

"Alexander Hamilton, the architect of America’s First National Bank, proved that a national debt, if not excessive, is a great advantage to a modern nation. A sustained economic recovery requires a source of credit which can be neither zombie banks nor the federal budget." [AgainstAusterity]

Against Austerity probably didn't know that Franklin did an even better job of making a case for Government issued accounting money (in his day paper money). Franklin showed that simply issuing paper money that could be used to pay taxes and against tax receipts could boost local economies. Alexander Hamilton was actually not as hot on that idea as Franklin had been. The authors should have cited Franklin.

Franklin and Paper Money

Post Keynesianism as a Way Forward

Post Keynesianism Versus Kakistocracy

We have a whole generation of struggling young people. Some of whom have turned to leftist revolution as an alternative. Others of whom have adopted the ultimate symbol of the lucky loser in Donald Trump. Both groups seem to want to just "burn it down." They are frustrated because our economic system is frustrating. Jobs are disappearing. Monopolies are buying out ma and pa or simply putting them out of business. And ruthless capitalism seems to be joyfully converting itself into kakistocracy. Schumpeters Creative destruction stops being creative the moment people stop creating. Hoarding creates liquidity traps. We have a system that is only serving some of us!

None of this is necessary!

We can participate in our own creation. The world does not have to decline.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

National Health Service as Part of the National Militia System

Health Care Service and the Militia

We currently have shortages of Doctors and health care service in much of the country, while we have a surplus of people needing healthcare. This at the same time as some folks flock to what seem like high paying specialties of healthcare because they are more lucrative, and these jobs concentrate where people with wealth live. The result is that much of the country (urban poor and rural poor) are neglected.

Public Healthcare is, and should be treated as a strategic public utility vital to the National Security. We've dealt with this before. We treated healthcare as a utility until privateers sold us the bright idea (but costly) that freebooting competition could somehow reign in costs and that running healthcare companies at a profit was a sane idea.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Restoring the First Amendment means restoring a Free Press

Restoring Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression

We need to restore a Free Press!

It seems that when the constitution prohibited the Congress and Federal Government from establishing a Religion or infringing on Freedom of the Press, speech, or assembly, they neglected to prohibit private corporate governments from doing so. Thus the courts have been letting businesses usurp those rights, while denying them to employees and stakeholders. Corrupt courts have been letting them do this since the Santa Clara Decision by privileging Corporate "personhood" over the personhood of the chattel persons working for them. Unconstitutional Government policies in the name of "free[booting] enterprise" have led to the disappearance of local newspapers, local news coverage and the consolidation of local radio, Cable and TV under concentrated ownership. This has led to a press that is controlled in much of the country, especially in rural areas and small towns.

To fix this we need to re-establish a Free Press as envisioned by Benjamin Franklin and the authors of the Constitution. A Free press is part of democracy. A controlled press is part of oppression.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Implementing A Second Bill of Rights

It takes a movement!

Everyone in the United States is unhappy with what is going on in our country. We are fighting Grifters, Opportunists and Privateers seeking to recreate oligarchy along the lines of what dominated the country during the Gilded Age and Antebellum age. To do that they've relied on denying our individual rights by giving those rights to artificial persons as governing Agencies. To defeat them we need to sweep decent people into office and defeat the grifters, oligarchs and pirates who are trying to subvert the democratic and commonwealth features of our Federated Republic. To accomplish both, we need leadership from below, from inside our Democratic party and also from outside the party. We don't need a violent revolution, we need a Second Bill of Rights. To get that we need an electoral revolution an an engaged electorate. We can take lessons from Dr. Martin Luther King, and should support people like the Reverend Dr. Barber, who is following in his footsteps.

breachrepairers.org
Fourteen Steps

Utility versus the pirates

People who see business as opportunity to loot, and competition as about economic warfare, are pirates not legitimate businessmen. And when they get their hands on monopolies and vital goods, they call that "privatization" but it really is privateering; guaranteed fortunes for the few versus pain and suffering for the many. We need to eliminate piracy from our economy. That starts with identifying it for what it is.

Welcome to the Orange Duke's Court

Welcome to the orange Duke's court!

I know you've heard a few strange reports.
But we'll give you an excellent time.
& Congress certifies they are never a crime.
I guarantee you'll enjoy your stay
We might even give you back your chips at the end of the day.

The Walking Ghost

 

What use is it to be clever and gay?
The facade wears off at the end of the day.
Long nights leave dark circles under the eyes.
Rosy cheeks fade to inflamed red & gray.
Youth quickly fades away.
 

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Affordable health care requires it be Treated as a Utility

To reduce healthcare costs and improve service healthcare must be Treated as a Utility.  Trying to jam it into the "free market" paradigm guarantees market failure for those pieces of healthcare delivery that can be Treated as a market. And guarantees poor quality of life & death for the rest.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Controlled Opposition and Active Measures

Are We experiencing Controlled Opposition?

Say it Ain't So Louise!

What should be in The Second Bill of rights? Draft

In addition to FDR's six Amendment proposals we esperately need:

  1. An amendment to protect rights of Natural Born Persons against Artificial persons.
  2. Nationalizing the Voting System and protecting Voting Rights for everyone
  3. Direct Election of the President

We Democrats must make our charter more functional. A Second Bill of Rights is more important than ever!

Health Care is a Utility

Some Goods are Utilities

I was listening to Randi Rhodes and she started talking about health care as a Utility and it hit me,

yes it is!

Almost all the great fortunes in this country come from people creating, developing, buying or stealing control over, goods of such importance that they are utilities! Henry George was defining the criteria for a Utility. His ideas would have powerful effect on the laws of the United States for the next 50 years.

  • Healthcare is a public utility. Hospitals, clinics, Emergency response people, are all providing vital utility to us.
  • Likewise, Energy, power networks, communications networks, cable companies, satellite systems, etc.... are all utilities.
  • Our education system, colleges, high schools, libraries, etc... are all utilities too.

They are so important that they need to be regulated and ruled in the public interest. And for private persons to own and make vast unearned fortunes off of them is piracy. At the same time, those providing the Utility to people, are important, and should be provided for and sustained in gratitude.

This is a simple, but powerful concept. And of course the concept has been a target for privateering recently!

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/utility

This ought to be obvious. Windows is a Utility. So are the operating systems on your phone. And so are your phones and laptops. People should make a living from utilities. But not vast fortunes.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Russian Agents, Gaslighting Spun News and Ongoing Active Measures

Steele Dossier Page 15: https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3259984-Trump-Intelligence-Allegations.html

The Trumpian movement to create a Domestic Brownshirts force is moving along. Fortunately it's not attracting mass crowds because, maybe, rank an file Trumpeters might be figuring out that Trump is breaking his promises on health care, is a narcissist and serial liar. I don't have confidence, however, that Trump will fail. He has dedicated cadres of agents with links to the Russian Far Right, and maybe to Russian Intelligence.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Tories, Neoliberalism, NeoKeynesianism versus Post Keynesianism

We Are Not Neoliberal

Friends of mine constantly accuse various Democrats of being "neoliberal". The term has some definite meaning to it, and so I find their use of it to be sloppy, broad-brushing and usually defamatory. What it isn't is anything to do with the actual Democratic Party and it's ideology. It is a defamation of Democrats to call us "neo-liberal." The term has a real meaning and is used wrongly by those trolling us, who use it. They can call themselves intellectuals, but they are defaming the party and what it stands for when they call us that.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Redemption

In the dialogue with the faux Christian right, there is no redemption. There is little talk of forgiveness, redemption or mercy - much less of humility, love or repentance. They also seem to ignore the Gospels.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Franklin As a Modern Money Advocate

This continues a post Tory Economics Versus Benjamin Franklin which in turn completes something I wrote back in 2015. Benjamin Franklin was no angel, but his observations about money and economics were on point. And he made some important points about the money supply that seem to have been deliberately forgotten, again and again, in subsequent years.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

The Unholy Alliance

On June 9th 2017 Zach Carter posted an article in the Huffington where the author talks about the distinction between aristocratic conservatism and authoritarianism. My Friend Harvey Kaye turned me on to the article with a tweet. But on reading it I had a lot of second thoughts. The central Thrust is on Point. However, he labels Democrats as "Good Aristocrats" and miscasts what we did (and tried to do) in the 2016 election. Still he describes what we are up against fairly decently. If incomplete. We are fighting Gaslighting and Flying Monkeys on both Left, Right and from Russia. And many folks don't realize they are gaslighting or being gaslighted.

Fixing the Air Traffic Control System for real with Public Trust

I support the notion of detaching the Management of our National Airlanes from the FAA's regulatory Role. However, privatizing the system would be a gross mistake.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Tory Economics Versus Benjamin Franklin

https://www.philadelphiafed.org/-/media/publications/economic-education/ben-franklin-and-paper-money-economy.pdf

Franklin saw paper money as a necessary tool for local government in the colonies. The purpose of paper money was, and is, to facilitate commerce. The value of paper money is that it can be used to pay taxes, which in turn are used to pay for services performed for the local jurisdiction. This keeps enough circulation going to facilitate trade and commerce.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Pirates and Privateers of the Americas

Grifters Opportunists and Pirates

Anyone who thinks that Privatizing our roads, railroads and infrastructure. Or legalizing monopolies is a good thing, doesn't know the real history of piracy and monopoly in this country. As we brace ourselves for another round of privateering, it is important to outline some of that history.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

A More Effective Democratic Infrastructure

Democratic Clubs And Organizing For America

The Democratic Party has One mission and that is representing the people in our country who form our coalition and of serving them. As such the party has two different roles in moderating our selection and election of officers to represent and serve us. The first role is to ensure that the people in our party select the best possible candidates for office and the second one is to ensure that as many of those candidates as possible get elected. This first role is served in our primary system specifically. The second is served in the general elections that follow candidate selection. In the first phase the party has to provide neutral judges and processes to ensure that candidates are vetted and fit for office.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Active Measures and the Right Wing

Even more fascinating, Bizaare, weird, than how the Russians got to Trump, who after all is a classic Kompromat target, is how they've seduced the Republican Party and Right Wing Cristo-fascist movements.

The day before yesterday I found myself reading a fascinating article by Christopher Stroop, who is the author of

"Bad Ecumenicism"

...and other authoritative (not authoritarian!) articles on the Christian Far Right. The narcissism and bullying of their leaders is well documented by Mr. Stroop.

Then last night I found myself reading a series of linked articles/Blog by Grant Stern called:

How One Man Influenced The Republican Party’s Transformation Into The Grand Old Putin Party.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Sanity In Healthcare

Versus Raming a 100 million ton square peg into a 100 foot diameter hole

Actually Restoring Sanity to Health Care

In an Article in Linkedin:

Ten Free Market Commandments Restoring Financial Sanity in HealthCare, by Dr. Robert Nelson

Dr. Nelson tries to make the case for using "free market principles" to reform health care. In so doing he makes points that a little rational thought will demonstrate make no sense. But they do make the case for a single payer system and socialized medicine. This is because the Healthcare System is:

"a proper social function, which should be controlled and managed by and for the whole people concerned, through their proper governmental, local, state or national, as may be."Constitution

Friday, May 26, 2017

Targeting Clinton Voters, Project Alamo and Russian Hackers

Last year I posted on Project Alamo:

Project Alamo -- Trump Builds an Explicitly Fascist Movement

My Post reviewed an article in Bloomberg about a Trump Data operation in a Bunker in San Antonio. The Boomberg Argument had Bannon, Jason Kushner & his team, fairly boasting that they were targeting voters for vote suppression:

"trying to shrink it." They admit “We have three major voter suppression operations under way” [bloomberg]

Then this year, Last month, the FBI arrested a hacker named Pyotr Levashov, and the news was that somehow that arrest was connected to Project Alamo.

Levashov and Project Alamo: Spamming Democracy

It turns out they were targeting women voters, youthful voters and black voters with direct marketing ads. They were using facebook ads to send propaganda directly to potential voters who matched profiles they felt would be susceptible to those ads -- with the explicit goal of suppressing the vote.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

20% of Americans to be priced out of healthcare

The CBO has confirmed most of what educated people already knew. The talk of high risk pools is BS.

We need to Get Out On the Street!

Kompromat Penetration and Treason

Treason

Frequently, individuals on a treasonous path do not even realize they're on that path until it gets to be too late

Retired CIA Director John Brennan

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Establishing the Second Bill of Rights

The Democratic agenda is unfinished. One reason is that the GOP is explicitly against the Second Bill of Rights.

Democrats Believe:To the GOP:
  • No right to a Job,
  • No right to an Adequate wage.
  • No right to Shelter, home, even a place to sleep!
  • Health Care is a "privilege";
  • No right to help during sickness, injury, old age or unemployment
  • No right to acquire a decent education at a reasonable cost.

To your average right winger, we don't have any rights to any of those things. Even if we earned them or pay for them. Buried in their fearful amygdala is a compulsion to hierarchy, a fear that one person's gain threatens the privilege of another. To the "conservative" mind -- only those with hierarchy have such rights. The rest of us need to know our place.

We have to disabuse them of those notions!

Based on the past 80 years of disappointments it is clear that we still need that "Second Bill of Rights" that FDR Talked about. We've fought to implement it, but have been stymied at every turn, to a degree that some claimed our own leaders seemed to have abandoned the project. And as a result the deplorable right wing has decided to attack the very notions the Second Bill of Rights sought to establish. The effort to repeal ACA, disestablish minimum wages, de-regulate employers and cut access to health care are all based on a very explicit assertion that we the people have no rights to:

Monday, May 22, 2017

Kompromat, Hybrid Warfare & Active Measures .

War is Hell. General Smedley Butler said it was "a racket." Clausewitz said:

"War is the continuation of politics by other means" [Brainy Quotes]

Mao Tse Dong said:

"Politics is war without bloodshed while war is politics with bloodshed." [brainyquotes also]

So it is only natural that some international tyrants see politics as a continuation of war by other means. The term "hybrid warfare" is a reformulation of an old truism to adapt to our modern information age. It's not that Vladimir Putin is pursuing a brilliant new strategy. It's that he's systematically pursuing principles of human manipulation, psi-ops and information warfare that are battle tested ones. 'Hybrid warfare' is international politics pursued with the ruthlessness of warfare. It is an effort to return the world to the Pre-World War I "great game" where coalitions were always temporary, often secret, and regularly betrayed for private, separate interest. It recognizes that we live in a world of fragile balances and asymmetrical power. It's not feasible to use atom bombs on our enemies or it would have already been done more than twice. We live downwind of each other.

And the Russians are [still] heavily involved in subverting our system.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Free Competition

Henry George, in his 1891 Populist plank, included a well crafted plank that included a definition of where the distinction between a public set of goods and services can be managed by the "market," Left up to individual initiative, and where it shouldn't. The distinction rests on the question of "where free competition becomes impossible," and his examples; "telegraph, railroads, water and gas supplies", today would include all telecomms, internet, electrical power, etc... are as valid today as in his time (1890s). And they hing on the term "free competition."

Thursday, May 18, 2017

How the Right Hacked our election - war on Voters

The primary mover in "The GOP's Stealth war on Voters" in the Rolling Stone, was a man named Kris Kobach. Back when it was first reported the original article was about voter purge software and how he was problematically purging valid voters from the voter rolls. This software played a major role in the 2016 election. Trump is rewarding Kris by naming him to head a Commission to make voter caging nationwide!

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2017/05/trump-executive-order-voter-fraud-mike-pence-kris-kobach

Sunday, May 14, 2017

To Mom and all our loves

Like Snowflakes

They are with US
In our souls
Even when their bodies
Have melted away

Like Snowflakes
Each unique
In their reality
In their own special way

Like Snowflakes
Born where cold air meets
Wet and warm
We fall from the sky
One day to return.

Chris

How we miss them when they leave us
And the leaving is always too soon.
It leaves an empty chasm
In the caverns of our hearts

But the echoes of their presence
The drumbeat of who they were
Is heard in our own hearts beating
Strong and steady, warm and sure.

Their voices shout within us
"Here I am, by your side!"
A friendly voice in the morning
A smile reflecting in our edges
As we awake.

And we go on as companions
Bringing them alive
In reflections
As we talk among ourselves
And remember their lives.

No more need forgiving
No more anger or silly feuds
For our loved ones
We loved them
Each in a special way.

And they pass on
Knowing that is true
Peaceful images floating
Smiling on the winds.

Chris

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Authority

There is a lot of "Business Stuff" [BS] in our public discourse at the present moment. Too many of our present day authorities are Grifters, Oligarchs, demagogues, charlatans and Pirates. If we listen to them uncritically we'll get steered over a cliff and eaten for dinner. This is true whether one is talking about religion, politics or economics. There is just too much money to be made by conning people [See Grifters], and at the same time, there are many folks who either believe the grifters or are so spun and gaslighted they pass on the nonsense. Yet we ourselves are not usually authorities. And if we set ourselves up as authorities, we set ourselves up to join the ranks of con artists and grifters. Worse our lies may be amplified by unreliable disciples and turned into myths and legends and join the corpus of fractional and misleading ideas that constitute our present messes in philosophy, religion and politics. How does one thread the needle of actual correctness, wisdom and find real authorities?

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Oligarchs!

Oligarchy is from the greek ολίγοι ("Oligoi") + (άρχς) archy = rule/ruler --> Oligarchy; rule by the few.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Grifters!

A Grifter is someone who swindles people through deception or fraud. The term is a contraction of "Graft" and "drift" and refers to the need of classic con artists to leave town before they got caught. Graft meaning "to secure illicit gains in business or government through fraud and/or deception; by corruption."

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Grifters Oligarchs and Pirates

Our problem is the Grifters Oligarchs and Pirates, the GOP.

We can overcome our country's problems, once we understand what they are. Our problem is not the Republican Party. It is fascism. It's not only fascism it is the predatory attitude of some of our wannabe oligarchs. It is not only this predatory attitude of predatory Oligarchs, but the frauds and dishonesty with which they attack their goals.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

We can Afford to cover healthcare for everyone in the country

We can afford health care. We just need to make our wealthy pay their share. The cost per capita of health care is approximately $10,490.00 per capita. Which is a lot. Our gross income per capita is approximately $49,550.00. That doesn't include income from capital gains. If our system were fair to 90% of us we could easily afford healthcare in this country. Unfortunately the bottom 90% of us earn an average of $33,000 and most of the income in our country goes to the top 1% and the top .01%. And since the wealthy make their money from rents, interest and "capital gains" that under-reports their income. The bottom 90% of us cannot afford healthcare without income transfers from the wealthy. Which is why the GOP is stiffing us. Our real issue is our GINI coefficient and oligarchy.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

The Ghosts In The Paintings

My friend's paintings haunt me
The Ghosts of the past alive on canvas
Haunted hands painted them
Guided by restless spirits
Burning memories

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Active Measures and the Left

I wasn't surprised by the revelations of "active measures" involving Right Wing Organizations and Donald Trump [see Psyops & Trump]. What dismayed and alarmed me was that the Russian FSB directed it's active measures efforts at US reformers, liberals/progressives and "the left."

Active Measures are the agitation and propaganda, electoral, terrorism, activism and other "less lethal" efforts of a spy service, directed against its "frenemy" neighbors around the world. Active measures support rebels and undermine the legitimacy of target nations.

Friday, April 28, 2017

The Incredible Stupidity of restarting the Korean War

Trump seems determined to start a war with both North Korea and South Korea. With North Korea he's threatening to attack them and he and Tillerson are talking about North Korean Aggression.

“There is a chance that we could end up having a major, major conflict with North Korea. Absolutely,” Trump told Reuters. [Guardian]

Then he says:

“We’d love to solve things diplomatically but it’s very difficult,” the president added. [Guardian]

Meanwhile Trump is also threatening the South Koreans. Seems to be trying to destabilize the South and throw the election to anti-Americans. And wants South Korea to pay for the missiles we put in their to protect against North Korean Nuclear and conventional missiles.

"Trump told Reuters on Thursday that he wants South Korea to pay for the $1 billion Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) system." [Reuters]

Maybe the guy thinks this brinksmanship will lead to a deal. It could also provoke another bloody war.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

The Beginnings of the Southern Strategy

Illustration page 466 of Book

I've kept the book "American Ulysses" by Ronald C White, longer than I should have. If I get a chance I'll buy a copy for my personal library, but in the meantime I wanted to share what I considered important about it. Grant, like all Human beings, is both a hero and a human being. White compares him to Ulysses of Homer. He was a heroic individual who did heroic things during the heroic times of the Civil War, but was nearly destroyed facing corrupt and venal Democrats on one side and corrupt and greedy Republicans on the other. The post war era after the Civil War is recognizably modern. There is something quaint about the the anti-bellum period, even in the North. But the USA is recognizable from the Civil War on. And part of what is recognizable was the shift of the South from overt traitorous rebellion to covert murderous subversion at wars end.