You are browsing the archive for 2011 May.

Freshman Republicans getting advice from Freedom works on how to double down on Medicare?

May 31, 2011 in Medicare

Amanda Terkel reports from HuffPost that FreedomWorks gives Freshman Republicans Tips for Dealing with Medicare at Town Halls. SOURCE

In other words, they are getting lesson in how to present misinformation and lies.

If they are really for the people and not the rich, these Republicans won’t take the advice.  If they do, then:  ”see ya, don’t want to be ya in 2012″

Those people need a proper introduction to some of FreedomWorks unsavory history

FreedomWorks is a non-profit organization heavily involved with the Tea Party movement.[1] It does not disclose its corporate donors, and its leaders are drawn heavily from the leadership of the Republican party and right-wing operatives. In 2006, the Washington Post revealed that from 2001 – 2006 FreedomWorks engaged in a hidden deal with insurance brokers whereby the brokers would sell high-deductible insurance policies and tax-free medical savings plans to individuals at a group discount, and those who purchased the plans would automatically be added FreedomWorks membership list. Customers unaware of the membership arrangement, for which they were charged extra fees. Membership was a condition of getting the discounted insurance plan. The arrangement was credited with helping increase the number of “members” FreedomWorks could claim belonged to the organization. About 16,000 people “joined” the organization in this manner, causing $638,040 to flow into FreedomWorks’ coffers over 5 1/2 years in the form of monthly checks for “association fees” collected by the Medical Savings Insurance Company, that were forwarded to FreedomWorks. LOTS MORE!

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    WISCONSIN: Good news for Democrats! 6 Republicans in line for recall.

    May 31, 2011 in Wisconsin

    Greg Sargent from the Washington Post Plum Line reports that

    Today the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board announced that they have now approved the signatures required for recall elections against the following six GOP senators: Rob Cowles, Alberta Darling, Sheila Harsdorf, Randy Hopper, Dan Kapanke, and Luther Olsen. That means these six elections are definitely moving forward.

    Meanwhile, the board has also announced that they are not prepared to approve the signatures gathered by Republicans for the recall of their three Democratic targets.  MORE

     

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      SYRIA: the malevolent king offers forgiveness

      May 31, 2011 in Syria

      If you are even tuned into one of our six corporate-owned media outlets, you’ve gotten word by now that the Syrian state media reported that President Bashar al-Assad issued a general amnesty for “crimes committed before May 31, 2011,”

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      QUEEN’S COMMENTS:  I’ll forgive you my murders of your friends and family? What is this?  I forgive you my sins?

      Are Assad and other elitist leaders of the world so out of touch with reality that they cannot even grasp the vaguest concept of it?  He is offering the people of Syria for forgiveness?  Is he even incapable of seeing himself as the perpetrator in this, the man who orders the murder and tortures of doctors who assist victims of his vile evil greed? It doesn’t look like he does.

      It seems to me that the people are well beyond the point of accepting Assad’s “generous offer” to forgive them. At this point in time, I don’t think they are so much interested in Assad’s forgiveness as they are interested in a piece of his hide.

      He has too many murders and too much blood on his hands.  Furthermore, as reported yesterday, the large faction of Syrian Sunni businessman who have sided with Assad all these years against the Sunni majority of Syria, are now turning against him.  Assad needs their support in order to hold his tiny coalition of Alwites, the tribe to which Assad belongs.  Big News in Syria. Business Elite are siding with protestors.

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        LIBYA: Maybe we should unleash Gaddafi on Goldman Sachs

        May 31, 2011 in Libya

        and the winner is. . . . THE WALL STREET SQUID*

        Be very afraid. SQUIDS can not only take out large whales, they can destroy the economies  of nations

        I don’t know about you, but my money would be on the squid. I think Gaddafi would lose that battle if we pitted the two against each other.  However there is still a downside to that story: The Squid gets even fatter.

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        NPR reports that Libya lost more than $1 billion with a Squid* Investment.

        Back in 2008, when Libya was making inroads with the Western world, it also wanted to get in on the global economic boom. So,the Wall Street Journal reports, Libya’s sovereign-wealth fund, which is controlled by Col. Moammar Gadhafi, gave $1.3 billion dollars to Goldman Sachs so they could invest it for them.

        According to the Wall Street Journal, which relied on internal documents and interviews with Goldman executives for its report, by the time all was said and done Goldman had failed miserably to make any money for the Libyans. In fact, the investment dwindled to $25.1 million by February of 2010. That’s a 98 percent downturn caused by the global financial crisis.  MORE

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        *Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone, describes the company as a “great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.”  Matt right-on in his assessment.

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          New Guide for Grassroots Candidates Running for Office in 2012

          May 31, 2011 in 2012 Elections

          Just released this morning!  A new guide a PDF of 38 pages to inspire you to run for office in 2012.  This free booklet contains all the basic nuts and bolts for developing a winning strategy.


          SO YOU THINK YOU WANT TO RUN FOR OFFICE? NOW WHAT?

          http://emmaberry.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/SO-YOU-THINK.pdf

           

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            Doctor’s politics shifting may foretell profound changes in health care debate.

            May 30, 2011 in Healthcare

            The New York Times reports that

            Doctors were once overwhelmingly male and conservative. But today the politics of the medical profession are changing, as more doctors abandon independent practice for salaried jobs and move from shopkeeper to shift-worker, their historic alliance with the Republican Party is weakening from Maine to South Dakota and from Arizona to Oregon, according to doctors’ advocates in those and other states.

            This could have a profound effect on the nation’s health care debate. Indeed, the American Medical Association supported last year’s health legislation after opposing almost every major reform proposal for nearly a century because the law would provide health insurance to the vast majority of the nation’s uninsured, improve competition and choice in insurance, and promote prevention and wellness, the group said.

            To learn more, read the full report, “As Physicians’ Jobs Change, So Do Their Politics,”

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              BIG NEWS IN SYRIA! Business Elite are siding with protestors!

              May 30, 2011 in Syria

              The Guardian UK reports that key business figures in Syria are aligning themselves with opposition groups before a conference in Turkey on Tuesday in a sign that Syria’s traditionally pro-regime business elite may be beginning to break ranks with the government of President Bashar al-Assad.

              About 300 opposition figures are expected to arrive in Antalya, southern Turkey, for the three-day Syrian Conference for Change, designed to establish dialogue between opposition groups with a view to establishing a transitional council.  MORE

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              QUEEN’S COMMENTS

              This is the best news yet out of Syria.  I believe that it is the beginning of the end for Assad.

              As I’ve mentioned in previous posts on this topic, tribal alliances are of paramount importance in the Middle Eastern regions.  Assad belongs to the Alwite, a tribe whose members are shunned and suspect in the eyes of many other Muslims, some of whom see them as apostates. In Syria it is the unholy alliance of Assad’s tribe with the Sunni elite which have stood by the Assad family for over 40 years in the name of security and protection of their own wealth that holds the regime together.

              The Sunni’s represent the majority in Syria.  If they change their alliance to the protesters (most of whom are also Sunnis).  It could spell the end for Assad.

              Although the Alwites comprise most of the military so the fat lady hasn’t sung just yet but she is clearing her throat so to speak.

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                JAPAN: Two Workers May be Damaged from Radiation

                May 30, 2011 in Japan Disaster

                Reuter reports that two workers at Japan’s crippled nuclear power plant may have exceeded the government’s radiation exposure limit, the plant operator said, adding to concerns about health risks for those fighting the world’s worst nuclear disaster in 25 years.

                Both the government and the utility, Tepco, have come under fire for not disclosing enough information about radiation doses and the risks. Some experts question whether workers have been fully informed of the potential dangers.

                “The problem is that too much policy has been focused on protecting Tepco and not enough on the public,” said Kiyoshi Kurakawa, a medical doctor who served as a science adviser to the government from 2006-2008. MORE

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                  LIBYA: More rats jumping Gaddafi’s sinking ship

                  May 30, 2011 in Libya

                  AFP Reports today that Five of Gaddafi’s Generals have Defected and Libya’s army is at 20 percent capacity

                  ROME — Five generals, two colonels and a major announced here Monday they had defected from Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi’s forces and said Libya’s army was now at 20-percent capacity.

                  Italian foreign ministry spokesman Maurizio Massari told reporters the officers had deserted thanks to “the careful, competent and determined work of our intelligence service.”

                  “You have made the right choice to abandon a regime without a future,” he said as he introduced the officers and representatives of Libya’s rebels at a press conference.

                  Abdel Rahman Shalgham, a former foreign minister who served as Tripoli’s representative at the United Nations before switching sides, said: “These officers are among 120 who left Kadhafi and Libya over the last few days.”

                  “We hope more will join us and the Libyan people, and leave the side of this despot and criminal,” he said. MORE

                   

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                    Only YOU Can Stop the Conservative Ideologues’ Privatization Assault on America

                    May 30, 2011 in Economics and Ideology

                    Rania Khalek has written a great article on privatization that appeared today (May 30, 2011) in Firedoglake titled FOR SALE:  THE DESPERATE STATES OF AMERICA

                    I commented and commend the article but this is such an important and critical issue–the selling of our infrastructure–that I want to call you, yes YOU, to action.

                    First of all understand that the conservatives have had a plan in place for at least 40 years to bankrupt the federal government.  That is there intention and they have done nothing but sabotage the civil service system of this nation for decades.  If you want details on the Conservative Wrecking Crew, I know of no better writer than Thomas Frank to recommend to you.  If you want more shocking reading of the privatization schemes of the rich, here are a few from my website:

                    START NOW!  RUN FOR OFFICE IN 2012!

                    QUESTION ALL POLITICAL CLICHES AND MYTHS

                    THE RICH WANT TO END PUBLIC EDUCATION

                    Short term solutions sought today by city and state governments will make serfs of the majority in the future

                    The Evils of Privatization of Public Institutions

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                    BUT MOST IMPORTANT OF ALL!  TAKE ACTION AWAY FROM YOUR COMPUTER!  BECOME A 360 DEGREE ACTIVIST!  LET MORE THAN YOUR FINGERS DO THE WALKING!

                    YOU CAN DO THIS:

                    Make several copies of this booklet and take them to your mayor/city manager and city council.  Talk to them.  Tell them that you are concerned regarding steps that they might take to privatize public institutions in your municipality.

                    See if there are steering committees that you can join.  Let them know that you are watching.  Let them know that you know there are better solutions out there than privatization.

                    In response to the fiscal crisis, many cash-starved state and local governments are considering privatizing core public assets, potentially costing thousands of jobs and decreasing the quality of service to the public.

                    A new report shows workers and interested community leaders how to make sure the public interest is protected and advanced when officials propose privatization schemes.  A Guide to Evaluating Public Asset Privatization, published by the research group In The Public Interest, gives basic information about privatization deals, and provides examples of important questions that should be asked when officials propose privatizing public services.

                    MORE

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                    QUEENS COMMENTS

                    Remember that Privatization is one of the cornerstones of the economic ideology of the rich.

                    PRIVATIZATION. Sell state-owned enterprises, goods and services to private investors. This includes banks, key industries, railroads, toll highways, electricity, schools, hospitals and even fresh water. Although usually done in the name of greater efficiency, which is often needed, privatization has mainly had the effect of concentrating wealth even more in a few hands and making the public pay even more for its needs.

                    For a concrete example of how well it does NOT work, look no further than how the conservatives of Arizona are managing their economy

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                    AND ONE FINAL BLAST:  PRIVATIZATION IS NOT JUST A REPUBLICAN ECONOMIC IDEOLOGY.

                    It is the ideology of WALL STREET CORPORATE CENTRIST DEMOCRATS and WALL STREET CORPORATE CENTRIST REPUBLICANS.

                    and no finer example of a privatization cheerleader in action than Bill Clinton.

                    Neither Reagan nor George H.W. Bush aggressively pursued the privatization agenda. However, Bill Clinton went at it like a starving dog. At the end of Clinton’s first term, more than 100,000 Pentagon jobs had been contracted out. By the end of his second term, he had cut more than 360,000 jobs from the federal payroll. Over his presidency, he increased federal spending for contracting out from the beginning of his term (1993) by 44 percent. The right-wing Heritage Foundation labeled Clinton’s 1996 budget the “boldest privatization agenda put forth by any president to date.”

                    SOURCE:  Chalmers Johnson, “The Military-Industrial Complex,” 7-28-2008, URL.

                     

                     

                     

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