Saturday, January 16, 2010


Why are there more deaths? (see below) Why does health care reform morph into the health insurance company bailout plan of 2009?

The Democrats like to tout how much Obama got from 'small donors'.  The Center for Responsive Politics (found at ... a must-visit website!), has a study up as to how much came to each of the major candidates in donations of $200 or less.  Obama is between 30% (primary) and 34% (gen. election).  That's better than either Hillary (22%) or McCain (21%).

Of course, the bad news is that corporate money poured by the tractor trailer full into Obama's campaign.  Obama raised a record $745 million.  If I take 32% of that (avg. of 30 and 34), that's $238 million.  That leaves $506 million in 'large contributions'.

That $506 million in 'large' contributions alone would break every previous record in the price of buying the Presidency.  By comparison, the well-financed Bush steam-roller of a campaign in 2004 raised a total of $367 million. So, there was somewhere in the neighborhood of $100 to $200 million MORE of big corporate money in Obama's coffers than Bush ever got at his peak.

Wanna know why the great liberal progressive Obama ain't out leading the charge for good health car for all Americans?  Because the 'health' industry gave him $28,000,000 not to do so.  And Obama apparently happily took the money and the deal.

Democrats are a strange lot.  They expect you to believe that this $28 million was given just from the generosity of those involved in the health industry.  And that it has nothing to do with the fact that they got their own private meeting with Obama in the White House to make deals in their favor.  And meanwhile, they keep trying to convince the Democratic wing of the Democratic party that Obama really wants to do better than this, but his hands are tied by that mean old awful Senate with its huge majority of Democrats.

Of course, these are the same Democrats, who while insisting that the Senate and its rules are a huge obstacle to anything a President wants to do, seem to want everyone to forget that they never seemed to filibuster any Bush initiatives.  If a weak minority, with fewer votes than the Democrats nadir during Bush, can stop Obama, perhaps the Democrats could explain why their 45 senators could never even slow down Bush?

The Democrats never seem to run out of excuses of why they are so consistently evil.

If you are looking for reasons beyond excuses, that $28 million speaks volumes.  And that's just into Obama's accounts.  It doesn't include contributions to the national Democratic party proper, or to the state parties, or to candidates (like Sen. Baucus for example), or contributions to 'special' funds like the convention or the inauguration.  So, that's just a fraction that the 'health' industry paid to get this bill that in turn gurantees them billions in profits.

So, if you are running a business, and you think it might be a great idea if you could get a law passed that forces everyone to buy your product, no matter how expensive you make it or no matter how horrible the service you provide as you deny every claim, well, now you've got an idea as to how much that will cost.  Its clearly the best ROI (return on investment) you can get.  Spend maybe $100 million, then make billions in profits.  But the game's only open to those who can bring $50 million to $100 million to the table.  If you want jobs for ordinary Americans, well, tough luck buddy.

Wanna know why Wall Street still gets their bailouts? Wanna know why the wars continue?  Wanna know why the 'health' industry just got richer?  $500 million in 'large' contributions is the answer.  Go read the list of Obama's top contributors in the 2008 campaign.  You definitely won't wonder why Wall Street got its bailouts, and its protection from prosecutions and meaningful reform of regulations and oversight.  Goldman Sachs is number two on the list.  From that, it looks like just under $100 million is the price to buy the right to become the nation's only economic advisers.

Never vote for any candidate that has the money to buy lots of TV ads.  Those candidates are already bought.  Obama bought $420 million in advertising in the 2008 elections.  When you see that kind of money being spent, don't vote for them.  The candidate that will represent your interests is the one who so broke he has to ask for a lift in from the airport.

(all numbers in this post from browsing around the website)

More Deaths

More headlines from ...

NATO Admits US Troops Shot Afghan Protesters
11 Die as US Drones Continue to Target Pakistan
US Army Suicides Hit Grim Record for 2009

Meanwhile, that great liberal comedian, the junior Senator from Minnesota, has his own new joke out ... Sen. Al Franken Expresses Support for Obama's Afghan Troop Increase

If you read the article, the techniques the Democrats use to lie are really amazing. To listen to Franken talk, even in the quotes he made while announcing that he's a willing vote for more war, death and destruction, he says that he doesn't think this is a good idea.

Typical Democrat. Talks against the war. Votes in favor of the war.  Franken just carries it to an extreme by doing both simultaneously.  Who said the man wasn't talented?

Of course, anyone with any sense just watches what they do, and pretty much ignores what they say .... except for its obvious comedy value of course. The key thing to note is this. Even while Democrats talk against the wars, they vote for them.

What voters have to remember later this year is that a vote for the Democrats is a vote for more war. Period. Ignore what they say. If you continue to elect Democrats (or Republicans), the wars will continue .... and escalate ... and expand.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Liberals Kill

The 'liberals' in America seem to regard the anti-war movement as a game. While the opposition is in power, to them it seems as if its a tool to be used to put themselves into power instead. Once in power, war itself seems to become a game for the liberals to play.

Liberals read the polling data and discover that the Iraq war is unpopular. So they criticize it like they are opposed to the war, and they campaign on the promise to end it. But, they also discover that the Afghan war is less unpopular, so even during the last election they campaigned to escalate and expand that war. Its all a game to them. A game to be played to put them into power.

The problem is, their games are killing people. Literally. I go to, and these are the headlines I see.

Afghans: NATO Forces Kill 13 Protesters
US Drone Strike Fires Into Crowd, Kills Another 13 in Afghanistan
2 US Troops, 4 Afghan Troops Killed in Afghanistan

That's just today. If I go back just one day, I find ....
Dozens Killed as N. Yemen Fight Resumes
Six NATO Soldiers Killed in Afghanistan
Over 3,000 Killed as Pakistan Violence Soared in 2009
Pakistani Troops Kill Eight in South Waziristan
Monday: 3 Iraqis Killed, 11 Wounded

None of that is a conclusive list of all the people who've died recently. Its just what I can find in a few minutes of looking through the headlines of

People are dying. The Democrats are playing games. Its now abundantly clear that the Democrats support these wars. Not only do they support these wars, the Democrats seem to be on a frantic search for places to start new wars. They've already started one new proxy war in Pakistan, the one that the headline above says has already killed as many people as who died on 9-11. Meanwhile, the Democrats seem to constantly be pushing for a war with Iran. And now the Democrats are screaming loudly for a war with Yemen of all places.

In the antiwar movement, we seem to have a lot of people and leaders who support the Democrats. These are the people who are constantly saying that now that the Democrats are in power, we shouldn't protest or even publicly disagree with them. There is this myth that the Democrats aren't as blood-thirsty of warmongers as the Republicans, so now that the Democrats are in power, we should only try to quietly talk with the Democrats to get them to change their policies.

Meanwhile, people are dying. Look back at that list of headlines. People are dying. And that's not even covering the wounded. The people who aren't mentioned in these headlines because instead of dying they are simply lying in a hospital bed screaming in pain because some part of their body has been blown to bits as a part of these wars.

Its high time that those of us who oppose these wars stand up and make sure that they end. In the US, that must include political action to try to change the actions of our government. People are dying. This is not the time to be playing little games with actions or events that have no chance of changing policy. I hear there's an anti-war protest scheduled for March. That's good. Its nice to see the corpse of the American anti-war movement showing any signs of life. But, yet another meaningless protest where a permitted march route goes through an empty city on a Saturday is not going to change anything.

To achieve change, we have to change the actions of our government. The American people attempted to do this by electing first a Democrat majority in 2006, then increasing those majorities and elected a Democrat President in 2008. In response we've seen no withdraw or change in Iraq, an escalation of the war in Afghanistan, the expansion of the war into Pakistan, threats to expand the war to Iran, and now threats to expand the war into Yemen.

Electing Democrats was not the answer. But, that does not mean that elections are useless. What we now need to do is to defeat the Democrats. Let the Democrats know that they won those past elections by lying to get antiwar votes, and that now the retribution is coming.

What we need to do is to run independent, pro-peace campaigns in all the CLOSEST House and Senate races. As the Democrats struggle to hold on to their majorities, let them see an independent pro-peace (and pro-single-payer) candidate in every race taking away from them the votes they need to win. Lets make it perfectly clear that the true progressives of this country, who've been providing the Democrats with the votes they need to win, are tired of being lied to and are mad as all heck about what President Obama and the Democrats have done in this last year.

If we march through empty streets, they won't pay attention. If we threaten their hold on power, they will pay attention. We need to put the Democrats into a political position where they know for certain that the only way they can gain an hold power is by ending these wars. We do that by deliberately targeting Democrats by defeat by running our own candidates in all the CLOSEST races.

Here's a target list in the House. Find a close race near you and start organizing. Don't wait on organizations and leaders to do it for you. They are all bought off or were only pretending to oppose these wars to elect Democrats. Organize yourselves. Find a target from this list close to you and go after them.

Remember, people are dying every day. Its up to us to try to do something to end this.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Reverend Billy

Sitting here watching Reverend Billy from Free Speech TV.

Great show. What a character. This show was a mix two different events up in NYC. One was coverage of a Critical Mass bike ride. The other was a protest against someone who's trying to turn the Union Square pavilion into an upscale private restaurant.

I haven't watched this show often, but seeing Reverend Billy getting arrested seems to be a regular feature. This time is was for his protest outside the restaurant.

The great part was that whoever was filming this was standing next to someone with a foreign accent who was asking "Why is he being arrested? Is he being arrested just for speaking out? That wouldn't happen in my country?" The person filming then asks "Where are you from?" "Spain" is the reply.

For someone who reads history, that's a striking comment. America was founded as a place of free and progressive thought. As opposed to the conservative monarchies of Spain and the rest of Europe at the time. Look how things have flipped around. A citizen of Spain who's in NYC is watching a protesting Rev. Billy get arrested and he's saying "that wouldn't happen where we come from."

Americans in general like to act as if the USA is the world's greatest democracy and the world's free-est country. Its a standard part of our rap that always seems to end with why we need to invade or bomb yet another country. Yet, a citizen of Spain is filmed standing on our streets saying "that wouldn't happen where I come from." Usually, the first step towards change is admitted there is a problem.

The USA imprisons a higher percentage of people than any other nation in the world. Continuing to maintain its lead in the strategically important 'prison race' over Russia. How important are prisons to the USA? As state governments face tightening budgets, do you ever hear of prison guards being laid off? Usually its just teachers and nurses and social workers.

The USA has massive militarized police forces at the local, state and federal levels.

The USA now spies on its own people, with Bush's originally illegal approvals now approved by Congress, with then Sen. Obama flying back to make sure that the big telecoms got their immunity as a part of the bill.

Any protest seems to be met by huge forces of police in riot gear. While the US praised the Tehran twitters reporting on the protest there, the first reaction of the US police was to arrest people doing the same from outside the G-whatever summit in Pittsburgh.

Is the US really still the world's free-est country?

70% of the American people keep telling pollsters they want the wars to end and the troops to come home. Yet, both parties when in power continue the wars. The will of the people seems to be ignored, when its not being ridiculed, by those in power.

Is the US really still the world's greatest democracy?

The Rev. Billy show is now showing a beautiful singing of the first amendment to the US Constitution. I'm guessing the lady is a member of the "Reverend Billy Choir". But its hard to tell, as all you see on the screen is that she is one of the many protesters sitting with their bikes in the middle of the street surrounded by New York's finest in riot gear. Beautiful bit of film. This is just after Reverend Billy got arrested, again, for 'disturbing the peace' by reciting the words of the first amendment. Yes, that's right. He apparently got arrested for reading the very words that are supposed to guarantee us the right of free speech.

The first step towards change is admitting there's a problem. If we delude ourselves by calling ourselves the world's free-est country when we really aren't, then that's a problem. If we delude ourselves into thinking that we are the world's greatest democracy, when we really aren't, then that's a problem. Its looking at the world realistically and admitting that we are not the world's free-est country and that the are not the world's greatest democracy that will be the first step on the path that would lead us back to being both of those things.

America was founded as the free alternative to the monarchies of Europe. Nowadays, a citizen of Europe stands on American streets watching the police arrest a protester and says "that wouldn't happen where I come from."

PS .... it takes time, but eventually police violence and over-reaction does seem to eventually lead to some protesters walking away with tax dollars. Its, a different Critical Mass ride, but I see this on today's headlines .... Gus Ganley Wins $70,000 Settlement Resulting From August 2007 Critical Mass