In response to a reporter’s question about whether Republicans would ever come to a point where they would work with Democrats on technical fixes to the law, the President acknowledged that Republicans are going through the stages of grief, but haven’t yet reached the acceptance stage.
Almost as an afterthought, but with more passion than any other answer, he then circled around to chide Republicans for denying health care to the poorest Americans. Expressing his frustration with their stubborn refusal to agree to expansion, the President addressed “states that have chosen not to expand Medicaid for no other reason than political spite.”
An aggravated Obama said “you’ve got 5 million people who could be having health insurance right now at no cost to these states…they have chosen not to provide health insurance for their citizens. That’s wrong. It should stop. Those folks should be able to get health insurance like everybody else.”
Saying things like “we’ve gone from white hoods to business suits” is one way to seem to speak to contemporary racism’s less vocal, yet still insidious nature. But it does a disservice to the public understanding of racism, and in the process undercuts the mission of drawing attention to contemporary racism’s severity.
It wasn’t the KKK that wrote the slave codes. It wasn’t the armed vigilantes who conceived of convict leasing, postemancipation. It wasn’t hooded men who purposefully left black people out of New Deal legislation. Redlining wasn’t conceived at a Klan meeting in rural Georgia. It wasn’t “the real racists” who bulldozed black communities in order to build America’s highway system. The Grand Wizard didn’t run COINTELPRO in order to dismantle the Black Panthers. The men who raped black women hired to clean their homes and care for their children didn’t hide their faces.
The ones in the hoods did commit violent acts of racist terrorism that shouldn’t be overlooked, but they weren’t alone. Everyday citizens participated in and attended lynchings as if they were state fairs, bringing their children and leaving with souvenirs. These spectacles, if not outright endorsed, were silently sanctioned by elected officials and respected members of the community.
It’s easy to focus on the most vicious and dramatic forms of racist violence faced by past generations as the site of “real” racism. If we do, we can also point out the perpetrators of that violence and rightly condemn them for their actions. But we can’t lose sight of the fact that those individuals alone didn’t write America’s racial codes. It’s much harder to talk about how that violence was only reinforcing the system of political, economic and cultural racism that made America possible. That history indicts far more people, both past and present.
Would [anyone decent] rush to [Brandon Eich’s] defense if it turned out he was a Grand Wizard in the KKK? Of course not. We are allowed to be intolerant of people who operate outside the bounds of civil decency. This wasn’t governmental action infringing on any Constitutional rights. This was Mozilla developers saying they refused to do work with a bigot, private websites blocking access to the Firefox browser because they refused to do business with a bigot, and employees of the firm speaking up because they refused to work for a bigot.
In short, it was the free market expressing itself. Eich was perfectly within his rights to stay at Mozilla, but he would then face a hostile market and eventually faced the reality that he couldn’t do his job in that environment. The free market spoke, and a free market enterprise was forced to react…
Conservative views on marriage equality are now fringe, and especially so with the younger people who matter most to marketers. So the free market [right-wingers] worship has turned against them. They can cry about “McCarthyism” all they want, but this is just market forces at work.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) “violated federal law by trying to remove non-citizens from the voter rolls too close to the 2012 presidential election, a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday in calling the mistake-prone effort ‘far from perfect,’” the Tampa Bay Times reports.
“…if I am concerned about leaving it up to states to expand Medicaid … it may not simply be because I am this power-hungry guy in Washington who wants to crush states’ rights but, rather, because we are one country and I think it is going to be important for the entire country to make sure that poor folks in Mississippi and not just Massachusetts are healthy.”—President Obama
One of the world’s leading neuroscientists, whose work has been acknowledged by work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith, has suggested that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is not “a real disease”.
For all of America’s wealth and technological advancements, it ranks below most developed first world nations due to a significant number of low-achieving, backward thinking, and unenlightened human beings residing primarily in Republican-led states in the Southern United States. About three weeks ago a Huffington Post article displayed maps showing the dire situation of residents living in the South titled “These 9 Maps Should Absolutely Outrage Southerners,” but a more apt title would have been “these maps should absolutely enrage America” because the rest of the nation is in decline because the South is taking valuable resources in the form of tax dollars and preventing reinvestment in America. Most Americans do not resent sending taxes collected in Democratic-controlled states to feed, house, and provide healthcare for the destitute in the South, but they do resent giving their hard-earned tax dollars to people unwilling and unable to help themselves due to religious intransigence, resistance to education, and opposition to policies that would improve their lot in life and benefit the entire nation.
Although the Southern mindset is not quite setting the agenda for the entire nation, there are just enough Republican representatives in Congress elected by gun zealots, bible fanatics, and low intellect racists that they are hampering progress and damaging the rest of the nation with their rejection of policies that would lift their standard of living to a point they could be self-sufficient and help invest in America to put the nation back on track to becoming an exceptional country. Last year a Forbes pundit commented that, “the common media view of the South is as a regressive region, full of overweight, prejudiced, exploited, and undereducated numbskulls,” and according to empirical measurements it is a fair representation of America’s third-world.
Every year I ask my class on “Wealth and Poverty” to play a simple game. I have them split up into pairs, and imagine I’m giving one of them $1,000. They can keep some of the money only on condition they reach a deal with their partner on how it’s to be divided up between them. I explain they’re…
“TWO BILLIONAIRES, CHARLES AND DAVID KOCH spent more than 2 times the money than unions on trying to effect election outcomes in the last cycle, and they sponsor commercials complaining about Unions. Understand one thing, these two people spent 2 TIMES MORE THAN ALL THE UNIONS COMBINED THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY! Stop being propagandized by these two thugs. The Koch Brothers also sponsor through their corporations, ALEC, the same organization writing legislation for Right Wing Republicans to engineer and rig voting laws and reproductive rights policy at the state and federal levels of governing. You should be asking yourself why you buy into their favorite undercurrent, that “voting doesn’t matter!” Imagine, if Presidents Clinton and Obama had not been elected, the Supreme Court would not have 3 strong women representing the interests of American women. So, if voting doesn’t matter, then why are they trying to make it harder for all of us to vote?”—Voting Doesn’t Matter and Other Political Lies (via azspot)
Has no one heard my warnings? The Koch Brothers are Evil Incarnate!!
Funny didn’t see anything on FOX about Obama’s usurpation of power and his dictatorial over reach. OH right, this was passed with Republican MAJORITY in House, and no Filibuster by Republicans in Senate. GO FIGURE.
When we hear about wage theft, we usually think of cases involving low-wage-earning retail or fast-food workers. But middle-class professionals have also frequently been victims of the practice. For example, like the Silicon Valley workers, nurses have had their earnings artificially depressed by wage-fixing cartels of their own.
More broadly, middle class wages have declined or stagnated for years now (depending on which income group you look at), with economic gains being siphoned off by those at the top. It’s not just poor people or blue- and pink-collar types who are hurting . As the Silicon Valley wage-fixing case demonstrates, even upper middle class professionals have become victims of the one percenters’ class warfare.
Two of the inequality-themed books I’ve read in the past couple of years, Chris Hayes’s Twilight of the Elites and Göran Therborn’s The Killing Fields of Inequality made similar arguments about how the masses can take back the world from the one percent. Since both are men of the left, I had expected them to argue, as Adolph Reed recently has, that the answer is to bring back the labor movement. But instead, they both concluded that the key to the fight is the middle class.
Therborn’s analysis is that, due to the decline of the industrial working class, labor unions are no longer well positioned to take a central role in these struggles. Hayes’s argument is that, while it is often very difficult to persuade poor and working class people that they are entitled to anything better, “[T]here are few forces more powerful in politics than downward mobility, the dispossession of the formerly privileged.”
My quibbles over the “Christian-ness” of an institution are less ambiguous, however, when it comes to a for-profit corporation.
A new narrative—indeed a needed narrative—has been emerging for some time now. Aside from Shane Claiborne, Tony Campolo, and other contributors to this community, Pope Francis has given a global voice to the inherent evils of capitalism. They have spoken to its impact on the poor who labor under oppressive conditions. And they have spoken to the spiritual sickness created by the ballooning wealth accumulated by those at the top of the food chain.
Hobby Lobby is a part of this system.
Now before calling out the guilt-by-association fallacy, let’s just reconsider their mission statement. What I would propose here is that if Hobby Lobby wants to run their corporation “in a manner consistent with biblical principles,” a good place to begin is by addressing the aforementioned concerns with capitalism and the extent to which their business practices are either helping or hurting the poor.
Ten months after Edward Snowden revealed that the NSA was collecting US telephone records in bulk, three sets of proposals have emerged to change the way the agency operates. All would end the data collection program in its current form, but there are crucial differences between the rival plans.
Take a look and compare the plans that could change United States surveillance practices.
Until ”The People” realize they have nothing, the wealthy will win. Even after we are ready to stand there will always be those that see the wealthy as the way to go. That is why bloodshed results. No matter how willing the have nots are willing to accept crusts, the wealthy will not willingly give up even the crumbs from their bibs. And those that stand with them will do the dirty work, until they are overwhelmed.
“The idea behind my legislation is simple. If banks get a subsidy, we should quantify it and banks should hold capital sufficient to cover it. If they don’t get a subsidy, the legislation won’t have any impact on them. The process of determining the scope of the subsidy would be transparent and the Federal Reserve would write the formula. If a bank’s shareholders decide that it’s not worth holding capital in reserve to pay for the subsidy, they would be free to downsize their institution.”—
TBTF risk has to be fixed. Taxpayers are hapless. There is no criminal punishment for banks that abuse risk.
If anyone still thinks mortgages serve any interest other than those of the lenders, they are pretty delusional. Requiring banks to limit their risk in the fashion proposed in H.R. 2266, while no magic bullet, could serve as the first baby step toward social responsibility and ethical business conduct.