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Rand Paul has been in the news quite a bit for his comments about the Civil Rights Act. I understand what his position is, regardless of how petulantly dogmatic it is. Mr. Paul wants the Federal Government out of states rights. Your role as a black second-class citizen in Alabama trumps your rights as an American Citizen. Deal with it.

Ironically, I had spoken to a Tea Party supporter about this very issue a few days before this story broke. He was adamant that the Federal government always gets it wrong when they make states do stuff they don’t want to. I asked him about the Civil Rights Act, and the Federal government calling out troops to force school integration. He agreed that was a good thing, but “it was gonna happen anyway.” I somehow doubt that. That is the funny thing about these back to basics fundamentalist people. They don’t see the last 230 years as a dialectic of democracy in which we have further defined what we as a people mean by democracy. To the far right-wing, they just want a do-over, like a controversial play in a sand lot football game. They say they love and revere this country and its history, but not the last 200 years worth. It’s like they and American history are an old married couple. It started out hot, but now they are unhappy and want to get back to the excitement.

But I digress from my main point. Mr. Paul further pontificated on his right-wing viewpoint, when he came to the defense of British Petroleum against the harsh criticism they have faced, including some by President Obama. Mr Paul stated, “What I don’t like from the president’s administration is this sort of, ‘I’ll put my boot heel on the throat of BP, I think that sounds really un-American in his criticism of business.

To be critical of a corporation that buys the men and women you elect to represent you with campaign contributions, and lobbyists, and golf outings, that subverts and perverts the laws designed to keep it in check and you healthy, that has manufactured a system so flawed, with  the protections enforced by law  so minimal and weak, that they are left to monitor safety themselves and ensure compliance, which they don’t even bother to do, thereby destroying countless fish, game, wildlife, ecosystems, jobs, futures, and dreams, is un-American!

Patriotism in nothing more than brand-loyalty to Mr. Paul. The flag that he loves is the one that flies on corporate headquarters. In his eyes, as in our pathetic Supreme Court’s ruling, corporations are people too, except he believes it is oppression for the government to stop them from oppressing you, and at the same time defends a states right to oppress you without the Federal government to interfere.

These are the politicians you want, angry, far-right America. There will always be somebody willing to tell you what you want to hear, if you just vote for him. Mr. Paul lives in a world where things are valued and people are used, instead of things used and people valued. He will wear a flag-pin and shed a tear as he talks about the American Dream, while the corporations pour oil down your throat and grind you to dust.

Corporate fascism is dressed like Uncle Sam and calls itself patriotism. Here comes one of its clowns, his name is Rand Paul.

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I keep talking to people who believe that guns are going to protect our rights. By the time they come for your guns, there aren’t going to be any rights left to worry about.

I don’t believe in any conspiracy theories about Obama taking your guns or ammo. The Automatic Weapons Ban law has lapsed and the guy hasn’t said one word about trying to reinstate it. It looks like he is fine with you having your guns.

I do have a big problem with people who think that having guns, or playing soldier on the weekend with your buddies, and calling it a militia, is going to do anything to protect your rights, or this country.

I never served in the military. I have studied a lot of history and try to understand military action to the best of my ability. I want to state that so that nobody expects anything more than my opinion on this stuff.

Here’s the thing. Let’s say Obama turns this into the socialist nightmare you NRA guys rant about, and sends the troops out after you. You grab your supplies and hustle out to the hills. The army comes out, and makes contact with you. What do you think will happen next?

From what I have learned, only about 15% of combat deaths are from guys shooting at each other. I think in modern combat the idea is for the infantry to make contact and engage the enemy, pinning them down and preventing their escape. Then, they call in artillery or air strikes to wipe them out. The overwhelming majority of casualties are from being bombed or shelled. Unless you can buy a Stinger missile, or something that can counter-fire against artillery placed a dozen miles away, your fight for freedom is gonna be awful short, so pack light. No sense in dragging a bunch of stuff around just to get blown up.

The other aspect of combat is disease. Through all of history, most soldiers died of disease. So, make sure to have at least as much medicine as ammo, when you go “Red Dawn” on the soldiers of socialism.

Let’s call militias what they are. A reason to shoot guns, drink beer, and bitch about taxes with your buddies. It is also a good reason to buy guns that look cool, but aren’t accurate enough to take deer hunting.

The media is awash in hype and analysis about what the American People are saying with these election results, and which policies this means they want, how this reflects on the popularity of the President, on and on and on.

As I have stated before, the media relish this kind of story, and do everything they can to play it up without actually doing any investigative journalism to find real meaning in the story.

The real story is this: the American People are like a fat girl trying to find a prom dress to make her look hot. You change the dress but this one makes your butt look big, that one reveals your flabby stomach, and this other one you can’t get over your hips.

We will keep changing these talking head politicians in attempt to find the ones that flatter us, but just like that fat girl, there comes a point when you have to admit, that it is you, not the dress.

No politician that is in office, or currently running has the ability to change this country. Corporations have made sure that the flow of money will continue to run to them regardless of the state of the rest of the country. This is exactly what cancer does in the body, releasing chemicals that mimic a wound, so the body sends extra blood and nutrients to the area in an attempt to heal it, and of course instead of that, the cancer spreads and kills the host. This is also a pretty good description of how the bailout works.

We are in trouble folks, there is no way around it. We don’t make anything in this country, so it is difficult to recover the economy. We have been systematically shut out of the democratic process in any meaningful way by the rich and the people we have elected, regardless of party. The future of this country has been sold, quarter by quarter, to insure good stock numbers. How can we have long-term recovery when the only real concern is how we look over the next 3 months?

The political landscape of the country has become even more idealistic and cartoonish than ever, and that’s saying something when we are talking American politics. There is a growing movement that sees itself as patriotic, but at the same time despises the government. They actually believe that business will save us, despite the main problem we are facing being the corruption of the system by these same businesses. It is kind of like trying to milk a tiger. I guess you could, but I don’t think what you get is gonna be worth the price.

On the other side, which is the side I am more partial to, you have those who want to make the government help the people. Where I differ in my viewpoint, is that I believe the government is incapable of meaningful help and change the way it is currently configured. It serves the rich and the powerful, not the people. It promotes welfare for the rich by a system of patrimony and influence peddling.

We have to unite, organize, and make ourselves heard. We have to make government do what it is supposed to do, which is represent us, the people.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100513/ap_on_re_us/failed_drug_war

I thought this was a really interesting article that illustrates my assertion that the “War on Drugs” is really just a way to generate spending by the government to falsely stimulate the economy.

The country has spent $1 trillion dollars over the last 40 years, mostly on things that they acknowledge don’t work, but that’s no reason to stop failing. I guess the plan is to keep spending on what doesn’t work until it does.

Check out the quote at the end. The question was asked: “So why persist with costly programs that don’t work?”

The answer by Homeland Security Boss Napolitano, “”This is something that is worth fighting for because drug addiction is about fighting for somebody’s life….If you think about it in those terms….you realize the stakes are too high to let go.”

Ok, so why persist with costly programs that don’t work?

My theory, and I don’t think it is too conspiratorial, is that people are making a lot of money off of the tax dollars spent to fight a drug war in the most inefficient way possible. We have more jails, prisons, cops, prison guards, judges, lawyers, bail bondsmen, parole officers, and parole boards than any country in the world, and a hell of a lot more than we did before the war against drugs started. Then there is the DEA, the Border Patrol, and Customs Agents. The Coast Guard get most of their action by drug interdiction as well. All these people earn a good wage for doing a crappy job, but you can count on their conservative vote.

The government is not failing in its job, in fact it is doing its job to a T. Its job is to support the will and desires of its constituents, which is does.

The problem is in which constituents are being heard. The constituents that are influencing the government are the corporations and not the people. The corporations, with their campaign contributions, and their lobbyists, and their threats that regulation and taxes will force them to lay people off, are running the country.

It is not the American people that are being heard, but now that the Supreme Court ruled that corporations are people, I guess “the people” are being heard, just not the actual ones.

Since money is now the same as free speech, get ready for a lot more of the same. Who knew that political evolution ended not in democracy, but plutocracy?

George Orwell’s classic book 1984, introduced the concept of “Double Think” a state in which a person believes two contradictory things at the same time. I think the idea is generally thought to be exclusively in the realm of the brainwashed and the fanatics, but I don’t think that is the case. More and more of the positions I see the conservatives of this nation take, once examined, are classic examples of double think, particularly how they view an issue nationally against the same issue internationally.

Big government is bad, big military commanded by government is good.

Government spending is waste, but $600 billion in military spending, 10 times the education budget and 24 times welfare, is good.

We support and love the troops, but we must have guns to kill those troops, when the government sicks them on us.

Our cops are acquiring military weapons and tactics to kill more, this is good.
Our military is developing non-lethal weapons to kill less, this is good.

We don’t want abortions, even if the mother is an AIDS infected, crack smoking whore. When that child is born we don’t want to spend money on “handouts” to help him, when he becomes a teen and shoots somebody, we will try him as an adult and kill him. In the womb you are the golden child, outside the womb, we will fry you to a golden crisp.

We are looking to the pro-business Republicans, who repealed all of the laws governing banks, to clean up Wall Street, and stop the liberal anti-business Democrats from giving more money to Wall Street.

Our government is retarded and everything it touches fails, but our country has done nicely being run by the government for the last 230 years or so.

Government is too inept to run health care, unless you are a congressman, senator, or in the military. Those Federal programs function quite nicely.

Having dialog with Iran is wrong and weak, we should just keep threatening them like we have for the last 30 years. That, and the fact we are occupying Iraq, the country west of it, and Afghanistan, one of the countries on its east, should in no way cause them to believe that we are a threat that would cause them to want nuclear weapons.

We believe in the sanctity of the Bill of Rights, unless you let people we don’t like have their rights. You must be a true American to have those rights, and true Americans don’t break the law, so they never need the Bill of Rights.

Almost 8 years later, we believe that Bush did a heckova job dealing with the 9/11 attack by attacking a country that didn’t have anything to do with it, while the guys that did are still free because we only sent 2000 troops after them, because we needed the rest to attack the country that didn’t attack us.

We are at war, except that there was no declaration of war by congress, which would make the war illegal. We are still at war, except the people we capture aren’t prisoners of war, even though we are at war and they are the people we are fighting. People we capture are enemy combatants, which we will try in military courts, but they aren’t in a military, because that would mean they were prisoners of war, with the rights of the Geneva Conventions, no, they are civilians, that we don’t want to try in civilian, or international courts, because we captured them during our war and made them prisoners during this war…..ad infinitum.

Corporations will treat us better, and the rich will pay us more, and stop making everything in China, if the government will just let them do what they want.

And the best one ever….Corporations are people, and money is equal to free speech.

George Bernard Shaw, one of the most quotable men of all time said, “Democracy is a device that ensures we shall be governed no better than we deserve.”, and therein lies our issues, my friends.

I am not going down the well tread path that states that the American people are too lazy or stupid to participate in democratic society. Americans are not lazy, we are working our asses off. http://www.timeday.org/default.asp states that we work more hours now, than medieval peasants. We live in a time where both parents have jobs, they work longer hours, for wages that cover less, as the cost of living increases.

Wages have stayed the same, once they are adjusted for inflation for the last 30 years. The rich are 300% richer over the same time period. Our gross domestic product has continued to increase, meaning we the workers are doing more, for less, every year. The end result of not seeing your kids except on the weekends, is more money in the pocket of the owner and CEO of the company.

Technology that was supposed to free us has instead enslaved us. We are computer age serfs, tilling electronic pockets of cubical space. I remember seeing movies from the 50’s or 60’s, showing the then common squads of secretaries manning typewriters, or platoons of people crunching numbers. All these people have been replaced by a handful of slaves strapped to a computer all day. The companies of that day were able to make money employing more people who did less work. Now people are tied to work all of the time with electronic leashes of cell phones, email, and text message. Technology has freed the corporations to make more money, but it hasn’t trickled down.

That leads me to another thing. I am tired of hearing that in order for us to improve the economy that we need to cut taxes on corporations and businesses. Cutting taxes doesn’t mean a company is going to hire more people, they will pocket most of it as profit, and maybe with the rest they buy new equipment and technology, which will give them a tax write-off.

The problem we face isn’t that government is too big, and it isn’t that they waste money, because that is the only “trickle down” system that actually trickles down, however poorly. The problem is that the government isn’t doing its job of protecting the American people from the depredations of corporations.

Instead of government of the people, by the people and for the people, we have profits off of the exploitation of the people, by the corporations, who make the decisions for the people through campaign money and lobbyists corrupting the elected officials.

Americans in general are too busy, too tired, and too worried about keeping themselves afloat to spend much time investigating issues and forcing their congressmen to vote in favor of the people instead of the lobbyists.

The news media as I previously wrote, does its part to keep you out of the loop, but not feel out of the loop by reporting all the drama and controversy, but few of the facts, and little useful information.

The first thing we have to do, is to stop believing the fairy tales we were taught that masquerade as history. We didn’t get a 40 hour work week in the constitution, people died to get you that right. The “American Dream” is a carrot at the end of stick for most of us. It is not lazy, poor, or illegal immigrants that are destroying the country, it is the unchecked corporations. They subvert the government and the law. Immigrants have been coming for a long time. The country absorbed the Germans, Irish, Italians, and everybody else just fine. With every wave came the cries over jobs and feeding them, and yet, the country survived. It will survive this round too.

Second, we don’t have much free time, so stop wasting it on watching tv. No more sit-coms or spending the entire Sunday watching football. Spend at least one hour a week on politics. Start by finding out who you Congressman and Senator are and how to get a hold of them. Then find out who is putting money in their campaign funds. Then look into their voting record.

Third, no matter how strongly you feel you are right about whatever political issue, take an honest look at the other side of the issue. Not from any talking head on tv, but searching for information online. If you don’t understand your opponents viewpoint, you don’t have a good understanding of your own.

I was saddened to learn tonight that Bill Moyers is retiring. I was going to post a list of reliable and accurate sources of information for citizens to learn about current events, and his show was going to be the first I listed.

I recorded the journal to dvr, and was always impressed at the frankness and quality of the information presented.

I encourage everybody to go to pbs.org and watch the show or read the transcripts. I hope they remain available for a long time.

On a side note, it has been interesting to me during the time I have been maintaining this blog, to write on a subject that has been on my mind for several weeks, only to find the exact subject discussed by the Journal, or online, or even by Bill Maher.

One of the things that is most disturbing about our news media, is how willing they are to trade integrity and objectivity for access.

It was a well-known ploy of the Bush White House to punish correspondents who had offended them in some way, by denying them access to Bush officials.

This same type of process was used in the Iraq war. Reporters were embedded with military units, but with the understanding that they had to curtail their reporting or lose their access.

The most disconcerting thing about it isn’t just how willing the media is to play ball in this way, but how little they get in return. What they gain with their access isn’t any exclusivity, it is just banal garbage that every other agency is getting as well, and that speaks to the absurdity of the acquiescence. They are trading their investigative birthright for a mess of glib pottage.

What is the use of access if you don’t use it to ask anything significant? If they are only going to give you a dog and pony show, then DON”T GO. Stop being the tool of political propaganda. Report news, not events, not reaction.

The crappier the job or bigger a jerk the boss is, the more likely you will find a photocopy of Zig Ziglar’s “Attitude Makes All The Difference” posted in a prominent location.

I am not saying anything one way or the other about Zig’s statement. It is just an observation I have made.