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A Crock Pot Tax-Exempt Idea

by Walter Brasch

A wall of suffocating heat nearly vaporized me as I walked into Marshbaum's house. In the kitchen was a portable kiln spewing fiery venom that was curling the linoleum. In the den, wildly pumping a potter's wheel flinging clay all over the room, was Marshbaum.

“Got a new hobby?” I asked from a puddle of water that I assumed was what was left of my body.

“Hobby, nothing!” shouted Marshbaum over the noise. “This is my path to fame and fortune.”

“Every one of your fame-and-fortune paths have ended in a cul-de-sac,” I reminded him. “You scamming the public into believing that slops of glazed clay dipped into leftover house paint are the last sculpture of a dying genius?”

“They're cookie jars,” said Marshbaum wounded.

“Still looks like schlock to me,” I suggested.

“Work with me on this,” Marshbaum commanded, “it could result in a column for you.”

Lending to the Banks: Any Adventurers Online

ProPublica just sent out the following, with some 886 Government Documents that were released by the Federal Reserve:

Search the Fed’s Documents Detailing Their Lending to Banks During the Crisis

The Link Between War and Big Finance

Veterans For Peace Endorses the April 15th Rally and Protest in Union Square Park

By Kevin Zeese

Veterans For Peace has joined in endorsing “Sounds of Resistance,” a concert and protest against Wall Street banks that draws the connections between militarism, Wall Street, the wealth divide and the downward spiral of the wealth of most Americans. The event, on April 15 at 11:00 a.m. in New York City’s Union Square Park, is part of a democratic awakening that more and more Americans are joining.

Mortgage mess: Who really owns your mortgage?

AFL-CIO blog site about rallies-link in graphic

If you thought you didn't have a reason to participate in the April 4th "We Are One" {face book page link} rallies around the country this report will certainly plant that needed seed as they continue trying to destroy what America once was building successfully, through it's workers!

60min. 3 April 2011, if you missed this it's a must watch and or read!

Prepare For Revolution: The Empire State Rebellion Begins on June 14th

By David DeGraw, AmpedStatus Report -  The Empire State Rebellion Begins on June 14thContrary to rumors being spread around, I do not know what our friends at Anonymous have planned for Operation Empire State Rebellion (OpESR). However, I wholeheartedly agree with the goals they presented in their "Communication #1" video. They are very similar to reports I have been writing and the movement we have been calling for on our social network.

Why Are We In Libya?

By John Grant

“…get a man greedy enough and he got the guts to go – go, go, … Vietnam, hot damn.”

-Norman Mailer, Why Are We In Vietnam?

The Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), the program created by Congress to expend over $700 billion of our tax dollars to prevent a “meltdown of the financial system,” is a “colossal failure.” It’s now official. Neil M. Barofsky, the man hired as TARP’s special inspector general, has come clean.

Why is it a colossal failure? Because, Mr Barofsky says, the act passed by Congress “expressly directs” Timothy Geithner’s Treasury Department to spend hundreds of billions of the TARP money to aid struggling homeowners with their mortgages.

Sounds of Resistance are Growing Join Americans Fed Up With Big Finance

Americans Across the Country are Joining the Culture of Resistance – You Are Needed!

By Kevin Zeese

Are you tired of big banks making record profits, paying giant executive salaries and bonuses and then cooking the books so they avoid paying taxes? We are. And, we are responding. Join us.

On April 15 in Union Square Park in New York City at 11:00 AM we are holding a “Sounds of Resistance Concert” and protest against the big corporate banks that have undermined the U.S. economy and displaced families from their homes. Big Finance has taken more than a trillion from the Department of Treasury and Federal Reserve to pay for their casino gambling on Wall Street but they are still forcing people out of their homes, not lending to small businesses and choking the economy.

Are These the Corporate 'Citizens' United{?}

{This may not be put together well as I've got some thirty plus years of thoughts rushing through my head, have since watching this last night, as I lived in and watched all this go down and the growth of their total control, not only here but across this planet, as compared to the first some thirty years of growing into and starting in the working professions.}

That own our Government, now are covered under the First Amendment, and 'our' representatives fighting so hard for while now gaining millions in campaign contributions, from their real employers, because corporations are now individual citizens and can give unlimited funds to garner what all they want!

I thought foreign contributions to political campaigns were illegal, that's what all the tepublicans were screaming about any Democratic Candidate from President on down for these past decades!

Seismology, Nukes and Bracketology

By Missy Comley Beattie

It’s blue here in Kentucky, true blue, a landscape of royal blue, this altar to basketball and home to the Kentucky Wildcats whose devotees are historically and hysterically frenzied for victory.

The same day I awakened to breaking news of breaking tectonic plates, breaking nuclear reactors, and breaking hearts, I left my sister Laura's house for exercise and heliotherapy. An elderly woman pushed her walker in the middle of a street, a man entered his house with a giant box of Pepsi Cola attached to his arm, and another person was at his mailbox. All were costumed in Big Blue fan-ery.

On Sunday, the Cats defeated the Florida Gators to win the SEC tournament. Often, during the action, we zipped to CNN’s coverage of Japan’s tsunami, earthquakes, and maybe-yes, maybe-no, Chernobyl-like meltdowns.

GRITtv with guest Michael Moore: People Power

No need to say much as to an intro to this discussion, they, as usual, do a great job.

One thing I would like to say is that think Keith would be doin great if he picked up Laura and gave her a spot on the rebuild of that Gore and company TV Station.

She's always done a great job when doing radio, her books, and now with this GRITtv venture, though to a to small an audience and Rachel's still under contract to MSNBC.

 

Michael Moore: People Still Have the Power

March 1 2011 - "This is a movement that is not going to stop," says filmmaker Michael Moore of the uprising in Madison, Wisconsin (and across the country--all 50 states held solidarity rallies this weekend). "I knew sooner or later people would say they've had enough."

Zombied

Zombied
by Missy Comley Beattie

My hands are curved, poised above the keyboard. I’m staring at a document, blank except for the cursor that’s blinking to the rhythm of an Annie Lennox song, “Love is a Stranger.” My eyes are focused on this small vertical mark that, at other times, could be a soporific. Just not now. Because the Lennox lyrics are bitter.

It’s savage and it’s cruel
It shines like destruction
Comes in like a flood
And it seems like religion
It’s noble and it’s brutal
It distorts and deranges
And it wrenches you up
And you’re left like a zombie

This describes love but it could be the tune of our times, as harsh as the world in which we live.

Madison a Foretaste of Things to Come: The Next Big Occupation Could be Boomers Taking Over the Capitol Building

By Dave Lindorff

The dramatic occupation of the Wisconsin State House in Madison by angry public workers and their supporters over the past few weeks is an exciting preview of what we can expect to see in the halls of Congress before long, as right-wing forces, funded by corporate lobbies and corporate-funded think-tanks push hard for cutbacks in Social Security and Medicare.

The drive to undermine these two critically important social programs is moving into high gear as the 79-million Baby Boomers this year start to reach eligibility, even as their other assets--their homes and their investment portfolios--are still shriveled by the Wall Street heist known as the “fiscal crisis” and Great Recession.

Pennsylvania: the Next Big Target for the Right-Wing's Anti-Union Campaign

By Linn Washington, Jr.

Philadelphia--Charlene Scott cheered and chanted with the hundreds thronging Philadelphia’s Love Park during Saturday's protest against conservative Republican onslaughts seeking to slaughter what remains of the living-standard comforts enjoyed by middle and working-class Americans.

But Scott had a different perspective than most attending that demonstration, which had been organized largely to voice solidarity with public workers in Wisconsin now confronting calculated attacks against their collective bargaining rights from that state’s Tea Party-aligned Republican governor.

Scott said she had seen this onslaught coming ten years ago.

“When I saw jobs moving off-shore, banks lowering interest rates on personal accounts and governments passing more charges onto taxpayers I knew this was coming,” Scott said.

What's Wrong With This picture!

China has set an annual growth target of 7% to ensure sustainable development during its new five-year plan

A power plant in Pinghu. To fuel the growth in GDP, China’s energy demand has surged by 220%. Photograph: Philippe Lopez/AFP/Getty Images

28 February 2011 - China will try to slow GDP growth to ease pressure on the environment following a series of unusually stark warnings from senior ministers about the country's current mode of development.

AmortiNation

Years ago, I was on my gynecologist’s examining table, feet in stirrups, in need of the morning-after pill. He handed me a brochure—info about the med—and said, “Read this, if you can think in this position.”

“If I could think in this position, I wouldn’t be in this position now,” I told him.

The above was to get your attention. The following is the main work:

I do my best and worst thinking when I exercise. Usually, I stay focused, repeating, “focus, focus,” but occasionally this becomes, “we’re eff’d.” Then, I’m not just detouring down side roads; I’m off-road with thoughts that require serious mind tread.

Of course, I’ve been consciousness streaming about revolution, protests, brutal dictators, and Wisconsin, lately. And while I applaud the occupation of the Madison statehouse, I wonder if people have to be PERSONALLY wallet affected to have their asses blown out of their recliners. What is it about the occupation of countries that is acceptable?

Iraq and Afghanistan: Wasting Tens of Billions of Dollars

Report: Billions lost on contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan

 

Sen. James Webb, D-Virginia, helped establish the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Among other things, a new report proposes that the government restrict reliance on contractors.

February 25, 2011 - A new report blasts the U.S. government for wasting tens of billions of dollars in Iraq and Afghanistan by relying too much on contractors and doing too little to monitor their performance.

The interim report from the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan points out that contractors in the war zones sometimes have exceeded the number of military personnel. Numbering 200,000, contractors now roughly match the military force.

Anonymous to Target Koch Bros - Join In!!

Press Release: #OpWisconsin

 

Dear Citizens of the United States of America,

It has come to our attention that the brothers, David and Charles Koch--the billionaire owners of Koch Industries--have long attempted to usurp American Democracy. Their actions to undermine the legitimate political process in Wisconsin are the final straw. Starting today we fight back.

The Security Budget vs. the Necessities of Americans

By Kevin Zeese

President Obama and the Congress have taken 66% of discretionary spending in the federal budget off the table – the Security Budget – while proposing a freeze to the rest of the budget and deep cuts to some programs that provide necessities for the American people. His budget crystalizes a choice that U.S. presidents have been making since President Eisenhower warned of the military-industrial complex – investment in the military vs. investment in the civilian economy.

The bloated and sacrosanct security budget – the military, domestic security and intelligence budgets –all saw rapid growth under President Bush when the DoD doubled its budget. Under President Obama the trend has continued with record military, intelligence and domestic security budgets.

Cut the Cards

George W. Bush once delivered a speech to a gathering of wealthy Republicans and said: "This is an impressive crowd—the haves and the have-mores. Some people call you the elites; I call you my base.”

Barack Obama could stand at a podium and just as smugly say the same words to wealthy Democrats.

Most of us can’t identify with these “elites”.

Nor can we comprehend our country’s debt. I had motion sickness when I checked the National Debt Clock website (http://www.usdebtclock.org/). We can say trillions. But the number is too huge to grasp.

Have you ever counted and rolled coins into those brown-paper cylinders? Takes awhile. After you’re finished, you do the math. Hmmm, thirty-friggin’-five dollars. Yet, in your palm, it feels heavy.

America's Happy Talk Media: No Jobs is Good News!

By Dave Lindorff

The propagandists in the corporate media are scratching their heads trying to figure out how to paint a rosy picture using the shockingly bad employment news out of the Labor Department today.

Here’s the raw data:

The official unemployment rate fell from 9.4% to 9.0%, when the prediction had been that it was going to move up slightly to 9.5%

The number of new jobs added was a net 36,000, the lowest increase since last September, when the economy was still losing jobs.

Here are some of the media quotes:

Associated Press: “The unemployment rate dropped sharply last month to 9 percent, based on a government survey that found that more than a half-million people found work.”

Climate Change and National Security

What the detractors, whether they believe the obvious or not and the flock just follows what they're told, are effectively locking the brakes on what we once were and envied around this planet, innovators in moving forward with the new idea's, interstate roadways, flying, etc. etc. etc. and with the same innovative workforce that made the advancements reality with everyone following in trying to catch up. Now those everyone's are leading and we aren't even following much, like as to energy innovations and a cleaner planet, even so called third world countries are moving ahead of us on the obvious human advancements!

TEDxPentagon: topic of climate change

Rear Admiral David W. Titley, Oceanographer and Navigator of the Navy (Photo: U.S.Navy)

President Obama's State of the Union Speech: WTF?

By Dave Lindorff

I never expected to find myself agreeing with Sarah Palin, but I’ve got to admit that the woman nailed it regarding President Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address. Asked to comment on it, she said it had a lot of “WTF moments.”

That’s exactly what I found myself thinking as I read through it!

We’ve “broken the back” of the recession? WTF? The official unemployment rate is still 9.4%, and even that is down slightly from a 9.8% high only because so many people have given up trying to find a job and have left the workforce, taking early retirement or just staying home. And the real unemployment rate--the one that counts those who have given up but would work if there were actually jobs to be had, and those who have grasped at part time work just to survive--is still at between 19% and 22%, depending on how you’re counting. Who’s Obama kidding: us or himself?

The State of the Union: Not a Time for Saccharin and Gimmicks

By Kevin Zeese

Members of the corporate political duopoly switched seats and sat next to each other making it even harder to tell the corporate welfare party from the crony capitalist party. Sadly, the spokespersons for both failed to learn the lessons of history and as a result the American economy will continue to falter with U.S. militarism continuing to expand.

Listening to the saccharin rhetoric of President Obama one would think the nation’s economy was flourishing and the military was winning wars. The truth, that the economy is still in collapse and the military is stuck in war quagmires all piling up record debt, was hard to see through his veil of words.

Don't Tone It Down, Amp It Up: In Praise of Incivility in Politics

By Dave Lindorff

 
"The wranglers over creeds and dogmas are perhaps the most persistent of all agitators; the bedrock idea being that a wrong exists which must be found and exterminated."

-- Eugene Debs

"Get it straight, I'm not a humanitarian, I'm a hell-raiser."

--Mother Jones

 

Martin Luther King, Jr.: "I Have a Dream...to Go to War?!"

 

The Pentagon sank to a new low this week in their attempt to sell the Afghanistan War to the American people. At their Martin Luther King, Jr., Day observance, a Pentagon official actually claimed that if King were alive today, he might support the war.

This is simply not true. As shown in our new video, Dr. King could not have been more clear in his 1967 speech denouncing the Vietnam War:

 

Press Conference: 1/11/2011 Final Report on BP Oil Spill {Video}

National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling.

Final Report - 1/11/2011 (Washington D.C.). Preventing another oil spill.
A Press conference was held at the National Press Club on 11 January 2011 at 10AM and lasted a little over an hour with statements at the beginning and refreshingly, considering what we usually get in our so called political discourse and from the journalism profession, intelligent questions and answers following.

The Chemistry of Empire

In the beginning, chemicals collided and catalyzed, evolving a system of development from non-living to living things, proteins and nucleic acids interacting--greeting and meeting, dating and mating—in a metaphorical dance of romance. The recipe to make more was born. Now, chemicals portend the end. So much tells us so. An eye for an eye doesn’t just blind the world; it annihilates. The blueprint for reproduction becomes one of destruction.

I’m not relaxed.

Sen. Lindsay Graham advocates permanent military presence in Afghanistan, despite an objection from Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s government.

And despite the deaths of thousands of military men and women during Bush’s war—the War OF Terror that passed seamlessly to Commander Obama. Last week, two US troops died in Iraq where combat ENDED months ago. Because the president told us so, even announcing the improved name of the non-war: Operation New Dawn.

A Profound and Jarring Disconnect

By Dave Lindorff

Democracy: de-moc-ra-cy, government by the people; the common people of a community, as distinguished from any privileged class

According to the latest poll conducted by CBS "60 Minutes" and the magazine Vanity Fair, 61 percent of Americans want to raise taxes on the wealthy as the primary way to cut the budget. The same poll finds that the second most popular first choice for cutting the nation's budget deficit, at 20 percent, is cutting the military budget. That is, 81 percent of us--four out of five--would cut the deficit by taxing the rich and/or slashing military spending.

Only four percent of those polled favored cutting Medicare, the government-run program that provides health care for the elderly and disabled, and only three percent favored cutting Social Security.

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