Robert Oak, an online friend of mine, has a post up….

October 31, 2008

‘Politics is distasteful…..’

Check it out. It might change your view of a few things….

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From The Huffington Post….by way of Charlie Peters…

October 27, 2008

An Abdication in Detroit

Carl Pope, Huffington Post, July 6, 2006

San Francisco — Last week, the Ford Motor Company joined the parade of stunningly hypocritical auto manufacturers by announcing that it was abandoning its goal of selling 250,000 hybrid vehicles per year by the end of the decade. Instead, Ford joined other automakers in promising to make 2 million flexible fuel vehicles. “In a joint letter sent Wednesday to members of Congress, General Motors, Ford and DaimlerChrysler AG announced a new promise to double annual production of vehicles that run on alternative fuels, to 2 million per year.” Congress promptly responded to the announcement by refusing, once again, to increase fuel economy standards.

But the auto industry knows that making two million “flexible-fuelled vehicles” won’t dent our dependence on oil. First, the “alternative fuel” they are touting is a mix of gasoline and ethanol called E85, because it is 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline. Regular cars can, and often do, burn ethanol-gasoline mixes that are up to 10 percent ethanol already — so the real difference with E85 sounds like it might be an impressive 75 percent.

But the reality is far different. First, it takes a fair amount of fossil fuels to make ethanol — diesel fuel for tractors to grow the corn and transport it, natural gas to make fertilizer for it, and gas or (worse) coal to distill it. But this doesn’t matter so much, because 99 percent of these flexible fuel vehicles never see a drop of E85 but run on gas instead. That’s according to a March 2002 study by the Bush Administration.

Since there are fewer than 700 gas stations selling E85, out of 176,000 stations in the U.S., these flexible fuel vehicles will mainly burn the same gasoline that the rest of the fleet does. For example, within 25 miles of my home there are NO gas stations selling E85 to the public! So, the actual savings from this big new auto industry commitment will certainly be trivial at best. Unfortunately, it gets worse.

The auto industry gets bogus fuel economy “credits” for selling flexible fuel vehicles, as if these vehicles were actually all burning ethanol-based fuel. As a result, U.S. gas consumption is actually going to go UP as a result of the auto industry’s latest maneuver. The Bush Administration’s study estimated that the combination of the fuel economy loophole and failure of 99 percent of the flexible fuel vehicles to use E85 would result in an increase in U.S. oil dependence of 17 billion gallons by 2008. On the other hand, we could easily reduce consumption by 50 percent by using more-efficient vehicle technology, the solution that Congress — and the auto industry — just rejected. ed. note: Did you notice the recent spike in food prices? These are connected folks.

Again, William Clay Ford and the rest of the auto know these numbers. This is not something someone just dug out. They don’t care.

If we really want to kick our oil addiction, we’re going to have to do it from the grass-roots up. That’s why the Sierra Club has just launched “Smart Energy Summer” — a campaign to connect Americans with the real solutions to our energy and global warming problems — ones that our leaders know about, but just won’t embrace.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/carl-pope/an-abdication-in-detroit_b_24523.html


Progressives in Congress show the right way to ‘right the market’.

October 1, 2008

Dear Democratic Colleague:

The House of Representatives rejected the $700 bailout yesterday. Distinguished economists across the world have stated it would not have solved the problem at hand. However, we can potentially solve this liquidity problem at little cost to the taxpayer. I am proposing that Congress drop the Paulson Plan, and instead pass the No BAILOUTS Act. The No BAILOUTS Act provides an alternative to the Paulson Proposal to address the current credit crunch. Once Congress addresses the liquidity shortfalls in our financial markets, a Democratic Congress can turn to Democratic solutions to address the broader economic crises we face today. Specifically, Congress can work to resolve the housing crisis across the country and pass effective job stimulus, which is the response Main Street America expects and deserves.

While Democrats and Republicans may disagree on the underlying solutions to solve the economic crises we face, the No BAILOUTS Act – a regulatory based proposal – has the potential for significant bipartisan support.

The Paulson Premise Flawed

Simon Johnson, a former chief economist as the International Monetary Fund, stated today in the New York Times of Paulson’s plan, “It’s our view that this package, in a fundamental sense, will not solve the problem.” Other economic analysts noted yesterday that the credit markets around the world were almost entirely dysfunctional even when political leaders and investors assumed that Congress had reached a deal and would easily approve the bailout. There is no reason to believe Paulson’s plan will work.

Alternatives

We have credible alternatives to the Paulson/Bush $700 billion gamble. William Isaac, the chairman of the FDIC during the previous worst financial crisis in the United States during the 1980s, believes Congress can address the current crisis with simple changes to Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rules. Mr. Isaac points out that while we face serious financial challenges today, many banks are still in good shape. This allows Congress to take swift, uncomplicated steps to ensure the financial markets return to working order. After that, we can work to resolve the housing crisis and pass effective job stimulus.

Today I am offering an alternative to the Wall Street bailout that will correct the capital shortfalls experienced by many financial institutions and help protect the integrity and quality of the securities market. My plan could be implemented promptly meeting the demands of the Bush Administration to act immediately without putting the American taxpayer on the hook for billions of dollars.

No BAILOUTS Act

Bringing Accounting, Increased Liquidity, Oversight and Upholding Taxpayer Security

1) Require the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to require an economic value standard to measure the capital of financial institutions.

This bill will require SEC to implement a rule to suspend the application of fair value accounting standards to financial institutions, which marks assets to the market value, no matter the conditions of the market. When no meaningful market exists, as is the current market for mortgage backed securities, this standard requires institutions to value assets at fire-sale prices. This creates a capital shortfall on paper. Using the economic value standard as bank examines have traditionally done will immediately correct the capital shortfalls experienced by many institutions.

2) Require the Securities and Exchange Commission to restricting naked short sells permanently

This bill will require SEC to implement a rule that blocks naked selling, selling a stock short without first borrowing the shares or ensuring the shares can be borrowed. Such practices many times harm the companies represented in the sales and hurt their efforts to raise capital. There is no economic value produced by naked short sales, but significant negative effects.

3) Require the Securities and Exchange Commission to restore the up-tick rule permanently.

This bill will require SEC to implement a rule that blocks short sales without an up-tick in the market. On September 19, 2008, the SEC approved a temporary pause of short selling in financial companies “to protect the integrity and quality of the securities market and strengthen investor confidence.” This rule prevents market crashes brought on by irrational short term market behavior.

4) “Net Worth Certificate Program”

This bill will require FDIC to implement a net worth certificate program. The FDIC would determine banks with short-term capital needs and the ability to financially recover in the foreseeable future. For those entities that qualify, the FDIC should purchase net worth certificates in these institutions. In exchange, these institutions issue promissory notes to repay the FDIC, counting the amount “borrowed” as capital on their balance sheets. This exchange provides short term capital, with not cash outlay. Interest rates on the certificates and the FDIC notes should be identical so no subsidy is necessary.

Participating banks must be subject to strict oversight by the FDIC including oversight of top executive compensation and if necessary the removal of poor management. Financial records and business plans should be subject to scrutiny while participating in the program.

In 1982, Congress approved a program, known as the Net Worth Certificate Program, that allowed banks and thrifts to apply for immediate capital assistance. From 1982 to 1993, banks with total assets of $40 billion participated in the program. The majority of these banks, 75%, required no further assistance beyond the certificate program.

5) Increase the FDIC Insurance limit from $100,000 to $250,000.

The bill will require the FDIC raise its limit to provide depositors confidence that their money is safe and help eliminate runs on banks which are destabilizing to the industry.

Sincerely

Peter DeFazio

Member of Congress

Call your congress person and demand they support this instead of George The Robber and Nancy the Fluffer’s giveaway to the rich. It’s your’s and your grandchildren’s money they want.

Tell them NO!


Do You Ever Wonder Why the Roads in Your Town are Turning into Gravel?

August 17, 2008

Wonder no more. It’s because ‘some people’ are not paying their fair share of the cost of government. Otherwise known as taxes. I know this story has been in the corporatist press but I thought this post:

Based on IRS records, a recent GAO report indicates that many corporations claimed to owe $0 in U.S. taxes from 1998 – 2005: roughly 28%-53% of large foreign-controlled and 23%-38% of large U.S.-controlled corporations. [The GAO considers a "large" corporation one with at least $250 million in assets or $50 million in gross receipts.

From NoQuarter had a lot more detail and so link to it.

There is a growing opportunity for those of us who are economically literate, a tiny minority, to take back the high ground in the never ending debate about taxes, government and what should be done by same. The ‘conservative’ shills who’ve been preaching the Friedman Lunacy for decades are gob-smacked that the ‘trickle down’ theory has at last been proved to be the utter bullshit that it is. There is a desperate air of ‘now what do we do…’  as the third artificial bubble of ‘asset building’, housing, pops following  the dot.com bubble and ‘financialization’ coming from the morons such as Greenspan who’ve been ‘supervising ‘ our economy. As Ol’ Shakespeare opined, ‘The truth will out…’ and now folks are waking up to the realization that while their real income has declined every year since Nixon under the Republican fantasy machine corporations and very wealthy individuals merely extract whatever amounts of cash they need from the U.S. Treasury, that’s us Homer, in the form of  taxes not paid.

This report points a finger at why you, yeah you Homer, ‘can’t’ have healthcare, good schools, well-maintained roads, safe food and on and on…. The next time some low-info fool tells you, ‘Oh, we can’t afford that…’ about some needed social program tell them the following:

‘Of course we can afford that. If corporations and the uber-rich would pay their fair share of taxes instead of bribing Congress to give them a free pass we’d’ have plenty of money to take care of the real, immediate needs of our society.’

And if they start bloviating tell them this:

‘Surely you are not advocating that some, particularly those best able to pay, should be excused from their social obligation to pay their fair share of the costs they helped create are you?’

More on how your are being screwed solely because you are NOT rich in future posts.


Say…Anyone out there really give a fuck? Really……Well here’s one member of your government who does.

August 10, 2008

What do you care about? Your health? Your family? Your children? How about something that is affecting all those and in a decidedly negative way? Let’s watch the third ranking Democrat in the Senate the Senator from North Dakota Byron Dorgan talk about how your government is doing.

Let’s listen to him talk about the American worker:

The Employee Free Choice Act:

Notice how he points out that the fat corrupt toads who have historically, and continue to do so it would seem, sat in the chamber of ‘The Greatest Deliberative Body in the World….’ had zip to do with helping workers?

Here’s ‘The Money Pit Part I:’

Anyone really think some of that 18 Billion never left the States…or just made a quick round trip to to some selected Solons…18 Billion in cash….no accounting. No wonder Bush can wear $7,000.00 boots, eh? Maybe the continuous, unrestrained voting  for more unaudited, off the books spending is starting to seem a little…er, understandable?

Anyone really think some of that 18 Billion never left the States…or just made a quick round trip to to some selected Solons…18 Billion in cash….no accounting. No wonder Bush can wear $7,000.00 boots, eh?

Let’s wrap this up with the Senator speaking at length on slave labor Immigration.

If any of this got ya going here are some phone numbers:

Madame Speaker of the House the Honorable Nancy Pelosi: (202) 225-0100

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid: 202-224-3542

And most importantly call Senator Dorgan here: (202) 224-2551 and thank him for his work. He surely deserves some praise.

Oh..yeah…I almost forgot…..This………………………..

I liked this in particular:

‘…administration and military officials say it’s not that easy to distribute the money. They contend that Iraq’s lack of spending isn’t due to laziness or corruption, but rather Baghdad’s inability to determine where its money is needed most and how to allocate it efficiently.’

In other words they’ve got so much money they can’t figure out what to spend it on first. Thanks Madame Speaker, thanks Harry, thanks especially to ‘The One’ who has voted for every ’emergency appropriation…’ for Iraq. And they are all, every one ‘….emergency appropriations..’ and not included in the nation’s budget. Budget…hah, what a concept.


A. Citizen is Here! And He’s not ‘Shutting The Fuck Up’ nor ‘Toning it Down….’ to please a bunch of folks who want to sell Tee Shirts….

August 3, 2008

Fuck no he’s not.

Okay, enough with the ‘bad language’ but after months of b.s. It’s good to be on my own. I’ve got some good ideas for posts still percolating on energy, sustainablity, economics and if you think the fight for the soul of the Democratic Party is over you didn’t’ talk to……

This ‘…tired, old, racist White Dude.’

nor

this ‘….uppity Asian Bitch.’

and yer missed the video:

And in conclusion read what this young Democrat has to say. If it don’t piss you off, if it don’t wake you the fuck up; you are dead from the neck up.

This nation needs the Democratic Party not a bunch of DNC assclowns playing at being ‘The Opposition’ not a Madame Speaker who has legitimized the crimes of George ‘President Death’ Bush; not a party where Howard Dean hands people’s votes to whomever Donna ‘Queen of Darkness’ Brazile points at. Did yah know that Howie will not take questions from the rank and file democrats he meets on his ‘victory tour’ for the ‘Presumptive Nominee’?

Yep, STFU! the battle cry of the little punks at CheetoLand and their leaders. Now the battle cry of ‘The One’. Whatever happened to ‘Yes, we can!’ Well, shit they did. Using the same techniques he learned in the most corrupt political city in the nation Obama has almost squeeked out the nomination. But many are now raising their voices in protest. Asking why Senator Clinton’s name should not be put up for vote at the Denver Convention. Yep, Obama’s folk say no vote is needed, contrary to convention rules, that he is the winner. This without taking a vote.

WHAT KIND OF FACIST CRAP IS THAT! EVEN REPUBLICANS TAKE A VOTE! THEY DON’T COUNT ‘EM TRUE ENOUGH BUT THEY AT LEAST GO THRU THE CHARADE OF VOTING!

I guess we will see.

Just who shuts the fuck up and who keeps their trap shut for fear of giving offense or being labeled a racist. If you’ve swallowed enough Kool-Aide or are too scared to speak out then go ahead give up your right to be heard. You can still do what you like for a little while longer. You can be one of the silent ones.

But that ain’t gonna be me pals. I am going to shout it from the rooftops. ‘We need Obama for President like the country needs an outbreak of the plague!’

Enough for one day. I’ll be back pointing to sites you can go to to get a different perspective on various issues. And, I promise, I really am not gonna be ranting about Obama…much. The people will choose and that’s good enough for me. You see I practice what I preach. And if it was good enough for Thomas Jefferson….it’s good enough for me.


‘Rope the Sun’

June 28, 2008

Yep, while Senator Obama as lining up like a good lil’ trooper to sign off on Cheney’s Energy Bill….

‘Cheney’s Energy Bill….’

Man that just sounds wrong does it not? ‘Cheney ‘s’ ‘Energy’ ‘Bill’. Huh….Yeah, according to the Big Men of the ‘Sphere Kos, Marshall and Bowers if’n Barry does it or is for in, for no matter how short a time, why then it must be ‘progressive’. Have I got that right ‘BoneHead’ Bowers?

Oh…goody…

Where was I? Oh, yeah a sustainable society, something we don’t have. Something nobody really gives a f$%k about even though they’re always talking about it. Someone better get serious soon. The Japanese are dead serious about it. See, they don’t have a lot of desert which is a central resource America is ‘rich’ in and which Scientific American’s The Grand Solar Plan takes advantage of to produce all of our electricity needs, including converting every car to plug in, by 2050. Cost, $420 Billion. Sound outrageous? Read the article at the end below.

Nope, no desert but plenty of Sci-Fi and lots of Outer Space. The Japanese take advantage of both in:

‘Rope the Sun, Suzuki-san!’

Kakuda, Japan—In a recent spin-off of the classic Japanese animated series Mobile Suit Gundam, the depletion of fossil fuels has forced humanity to turn to space-based solar power generation as
global conflicts rage over energy shortages. The sci-fi saga is set in the year 2307, but even now real Japanese scientists are working on the hardware needed to realize orbital generators as a form of clean,
renewable energy, with plans to complete a prototype in about 20 years.The concept of solar panels beaming down energy from space has long been pondered—and long been dismissed as too costly and impractical. But in
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