Monday, October 14, 2013

Crisis-democracy - the New Normal

Wish I could say I am middle class. I've a bachelors degree, I had a house, have children with hopes of the future. But unemployment is the dividing line amongst the classes isn't it?

Middle class families could survive for a few months on savings, because they aren't living paycheck to paycheck. They can put away money for emergencies, college funds and retirement. So what percent of Americans are Middleclass?

Time magazine reported in 2011 that 64% of Americans don't have $1000 in savings. In CNN Money in June of 2013, 74% of Americans polled didn't have $1000 in savings. Notice how the number of Americans without an extra grand in the bank keeps going up. Based on these articles alone, we could speculate that middle class Americans are less than a third of the population. The two-thirds of Americans really don't need the government to be shutdown right now.

The WIC program, that provides food for women and children is running on fumes. With Federal funds stopped, WIC in many states aren't issuing new vouchers to people in need and can't promise continued support for those already in the program. State funds only lasts weeks.

A little girl in a Philadelphia school died because of asthma, there was no school nurse on duty because hundreds had been let go in Pennsylvania. The governor cut one BILLION dollars from the education budget, while giving tax breaks to corporations.

There's talk of amongst the Republican ranks of cutting Social Security to balance the deficit. Social Security is funded by payroll taxes! It doesn't contribute to the deficit! The Republicans (and the Democrats, quiet as it's kept) want to keep taking more of our money to pay for their wars and corporate tax breaks.

Why are we really having this government shutdown? I'd bet lunch money it's not about the Affordable Health Care Act. Americans being forced to buy an expensive service without price controls equating to a bailout for the healthcare industry and bid pharma. Politicians aren't upset about that. The Act was a pretext to shutdown the government, like gas bombs was a pretext to attack Syria.

If corporate owners want deregulation, one way to get it is by crippling the government so it can't regulate. How much regulation can be enforced during a government shutdown? This may be the new normal fascists want in America, a broken government always on the edge of economic collapse.



Saturday, October 12, 2013

Live Jazz with Kim Reynolds band

Enjoyed the straight ahead sound of Kim Reynolds band. In this vid their performing in downtown Silver Spring, Maryland. Band is cool, strong saxophonist, piano player has a light touch. Very cool, nigh righteous even! Happened October 6, 2013.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Neighborhood Shutdown - All Politics are Local

Walking through my neighborhood, thinking about the impact of the #govshutdown on all these families. There are a lot of immigrants here, so the shutdown could have devastating effects, like federally funded social services running out of money. Of course there are the furloughed government workers having to pay for food, rent and college tuition out of their savings. That's a lot of pain.

As you can see from the video with Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul, Congress doesn't feel our pain. It's just sport to them. The House and Senate will not have to buy groceries differently during this #shutdown. They won't have to negotiate late fees with their mortgage company or with Sallie Mae. They don't get it.

We should perform our own version of the government shutdown. We should take down the names of the people who represent us in Congress and not send them or their party back next election cycle. They are counting on us forgetting. They think we have memories like goldfish.

Goldfish. I explained partisanship to my kid like this: A blue hand feeds the fish fish food. Later, a red hand feeds them. The goldfish start arguing over who gives the best fish food. That's partisanship. The reality is it's the same fish food and the fish are trapped in a bowl instead of being out in the ocean where they belong. Can we break out of the bowl this election cycle?

If you are a fiscal conservative and are Ok with me paying more as a percentage in taxes than General Motors, then we disagree about what's fair and should debate the idea. But I wouldn't shutdown the government to bend you to my will. That's what's happening in Washington as far as I can tell.

I bet from the perspective of other countries, it looks like the United States is imploding. Like Germany did during the nineteen twenties. Back then it was the Natioanal Socialists, here it's the Tea Party, in Greece it's the Golden Dawn. Fear-based movements promising order to the ignorant masses looking for saving.

This government shutdown is a beautifully illustration of how the politicians, en masse, don't give a fuck about us. They don't care if your mom's social security check is late. They don't care if your student loan doesn't get processed or if you go broke paying medical bills. Why should we give a care if they advance in their careers as politicians?

Don't vote for these creatures next cycle, only third party candidates or not at all. Only weirdos and activists this time around, better the devils we don't know, the ones we know are shutting our government down!


Thursday, October 3, 2013

Shots Fired in Capital - Cops, A Woman and A Baby

Shooting near the Whitehouse is what I heard today. Turns out the Capital Hill cops were doing all the shooting at an unarmed woman in a car. She was apparently trying to drive into the Whitehouse or Congress or something.

In the video, the cops are trying to open the passenger door, surely they could see the baby in the car. They shoot anyway. The woman was unarmed! There was a baby in the car! Why didn't they just let her crash into the barriers, then try to apprehend her? You'd need an armored truck to get over the barriers around federal buildings nowadays, not that sports coupe she was driving.

This event seems suscipicous to me. Just as suspicious as the Navy Yard shooting a few weeks ago. My gut tells me the contractor who supposedly shoot up the place, was a pawn. First reports from the Navy Yard were of three gun men. Similar reports after the Aurora shooting at the theater.

Also suspicious was the training exercises happening today in DC, joint training with DoD and police. The link is below and here's a quote from the article on

...Capital Shield 2014 is a joint training exercise in the National Capital Region, or NCR, that runs from Sept. 30 thru Oct. 3, and is hosted by the Joint Force Headquarters - National Capital Region. It brings federal, state, local and municipal agencies together to realistically test interagency operability during a crisis impacting the District of Columbia, Virginia and Maryland. It also trains and prepares the Department of Defense to provide defense support to civil authorities and employ appropriate force protection measures as requested...

Not saying the aforementioned events were staged or part of an conspiracy, but anything is possible. With all these perpetrators sharing histories of mental illness, I hope the Affordable Care Act offers therapists services for free.




GovtShutdown? Why really?

Watched the Senate live Monday night on my iPad. Watched as the clock ticked away. Kept waiting for a last minute cave-in by Obama. At 12:01AM, Harry Reid read a letter saying the government is closed bitches.. or something to that effect.

Republicans and the Democrats get their money from the same corporations. So their agenda is essentially the same, it's just that each party wants to be the ones serving you the Kool-Aid. Each party gets money from big pharma and the HMOs, so why choose this issue for their Shutdown Theater?

News reports say 800,000 people could be sent home. Possibly one million people asked to work without pay. Those numbers don't describe the resturaunts, food trucks, stores, building maintenance, contractors and family members affected. All that pain.. so what's the GOPs political calculation here? Don't they fear a backlash?

What's the real reason for the shutdown? Did China and Japan try to cash in on all the US treasusury notes they hold? Are they trying to provoke riots to impose marshal law? I just don't believe it's about the Affordable Care Act.

The video below is a debate on Affordable Care Act with an economist and a pediatrician, hosted by Baltimore based indie news outfit The Real News. You'll learn more about what's in the Act, then ask yourself, is this worth a shutdown of the government?

Obamacare Debate: Flowers vs. Baker from