Happy New Year Everyone


Sorry for the lack of updates recently, it’s been a hectic holiday season.  Thanks to everyone who visits and reads the site and for leaving comments.  A blog is only as good as the discussion it generates in my opinion and I love hearing from you guys.  I hope each of you have a happy and healthy new year and I’ll try and update more regularly in 2009.  As you can see I’m currently tweaking the look a bit, it was bugging me.

Be safe and stay out of trouble.

When a Gluttonous Consumer Society Finally Gorges Itself to Death


We are living in a society that subsists almost entirely on our greed and lack of self-control.  Take away the greed and add some self-control and watch the economy falter.

“The search for efficiency and the urge to consume has set us all up like a row of dominoes – there is no buffer, no resiliency. As one problem rises it causes another. As one solution is tried it drives another problem. We all pull back and the consumer economy stalls. The auto industry and credit firms feeds the media (40% of conventional advertising). Papers and TV and Radio networks, many subject to LBO’s will have to fail as per the Tribune. Every sector will be laying people off. Sales of all things fall off a cliff – driving more business failures and layoffs. Cities and states that depend on sales tax and property tax and the credit markets can rely on none of these. So they too will have to lay off millions – thus making all the problems worse. National governments will be asked to save us all and of course cannot. As States and Cities get squeezed and cannot borrow, they will too lay off millions – teachers, firemen police. No one will be safe,” – Robert Patterson, surveying the year to come.

Can we learn to rebuild and restructure our society and economy to accommodate a sustainable future?  Or will we wait until the fear passes, print more money and continue our old ways, leaving these pesky problems for our children and grandchildren to deal with?

The New School in Exile


3119830190_5d88acf9c1_bIt seems that the students over at The New School are taking this whole “change” thing pretty effing literally.

Students have occupied part of the campus in what was initially, and still for the most part is, a peaceful protest of the administration of their school.  It seems they are very nonplussed at the idea of having an outspoken, vocal supporter of the Iraq war as their President (join the club kids) and are hellbent to force him out.

While the sit-in, which has been ongoing for two days now, refuses to disperse, police are obviously keeping anyone else from going in so a spontaneous protest has spilled out onto the streets outside the building being occupied.

The students have released a list of demands which includes, “The removal of Bob Kerrey as president of our university” and “The removal of James Murtha as executive vice president of our university”, among many other things.  Most of which involve having the students, faculty and staff being more involved in virtually every aspect of the school’s decision making process.
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The Jonathan Magbie Story


jonathanmagbieI had never heard of Jonathan Magbie’s story until now, but it may quite seriously the most fucked up story I have ever heard.  If this is not a scathing indictment of the American justice system and it’s pathetic war on drugs then I don’t know what is.  

The events of this story took place in 2004 but the records of what actually happened were only recently opened to the public.  Magbie went from being a prop in a political photo op to a pawn in a deadly game of legal chess in the war on drugs.

Jonathan Magbie, who had been a quadriplegic since being hit by a drunk driver at age 4, died on Sept. 24, 2004, four days after D.C. Superior Court judge, Judge Judith E. Retchin sentenced him to 10 days in jail for possession of marijuana.  Magbie was a first-time offender.

Bbeing a quadripligic and all, Magbie needed a ventilator to help him breathe.  Retchin however could not let that minor detail get in the way of her keeping this non-violent, quadriplegic drug offender off of the streets.

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GM's Timeline: A History of Greed and Failure


This whole GM suckage thing didn’t just happen overnight. It’s been a long time coming.

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Michael Moore is Stealing My Rants on the Auto Industry Bailout


OK, he’s probably not really stealing them but it seems our initial reactions to the Senate bailing on the bailout were pretty much the same.  I just posted mine first that’s all I’m saying.

They could have given the loan on the condition that the automakers start building only cars and mass transit that reduce our dependency on oil.

They could have given the loan on the condition that the automakers build cars that reduce global warming.

They could have given the loan on the condition that the automakers withdraw their many lawsuits against state governments in their attempts to not comply with our environmental laws.

They could have given the loan on the condition that the management team which drove these once-great manufacturers into the ground resign and be replaced with a team who understands the transportation needs of the 21st century.

Yes, they could have given the loan for any of these reasons because, in the end, to lose our manufacturing infrastructure and throw 3 million people out of work would be a catastrophe.

But instead, the Senate said, we’ll give you the loan only if the factory workers take a $20 an hour cut in wages, pension and health care. That’s right. After giving BILLIONS to Wall Street hucksters and criminal investment bankers — billions with no strings attached and, as we have since learned, no oversight whatsoever — the Senate decided it is more important to break a union, more important to throw middle class wage earners into the ranks of the working poor than to prevent the total collapse of industrial America. 

Could have, should have, would have.  From where I stand, having made many of those exact same points myself, there’s a part of me that’s saying these things are the CHANGE I expected.  This seemed like the perfect opportunity to put into action all those many campaign promises.  I know Obama hasn’t taken office yet and I’m not putting this on him, but I truly hope that once he does take office and is in the position to make good on his promise of real change that he start with this.

There will not be a better opportunity for Obama to make good on his rallying cry of change than to take this opportunity to boot out the greedy corporate bafoons that have literally driven the American auto industry to the brink of extinction and run them out on a rail.  Let’s hope that come January 20th real change really will come to Washington.