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Labor Pains

(Photos by Robin Holland)

In this week’s JOURNAL, Bill Moyers spoke with labor experts Michael Zweig and Bill Fletcher about the prospects for organized labor in the United States.

An annual Gallup poll conducted in August delivered sobering news to supporters of organized labor, finding that public approval of unions has declined to the lowest point in more than seventy years since the poll began:

“Gallup finds organized labor taking a significant image hit in the past year. While 66% of Americans continue to believe unions are beneficial to their own members, a slight majority now say unions hurt the nation's economy. More broadly, fewer than half of Americans -- 48%, an all-time low -- approve of labor unions, down from 59% a year ago... The 48% of Americans now approving of unions represents the first sub-50% approval since Gallup first asked the question in the 1930s. The previous low was 55%, found in both 1979 and 1981... There has been an even larger jump in the percentage saying labor unions mostly hurt the U.S. economy, from 36% in 2006 to 51% today.”

Michael Zweig said that organized labor has become overly willing to accommodate power rather than challenge it:

“The labor movement had a very militant, very aggressive stance in the '30s, '40s, '50s that challenged capital [and] that got tremendous benefits... Let's not forget, the labor movement is what got us the eight hour day and Social Security and all the other things that we think are so very important, but are just natural. That came out of a labor movement that was led and fueled by people who understood that there was antagonism, that there was a battle that they were involved in. This was not just, 'let's sit down and have lunch and figure out what's the best thing to do for America.' This was, 'here's a group of people who run the country and run businesses, and they have a certain set of interests and they do not have our interests at heart...' We have to be organized and be a contrary force that's a real force, that isn't just a debating society, that doesn't just have resolutions that it passes.”

Bill Fletcher said that organized labor needs to foster a broad social justice movement that looks beyond individual workplaces in order to gain more mass support:

“The question for organized labor is whether or not it can actually become a class movement, a movement of workers, and not simply unions representing people in different workplaces because I think that speaks to some of the anger that’s out there among workers who feel that they’re unrepresented [and] that the society is crushing them. They’re looking for a vehicle. They’re looking for someone to be their champion, someone to channel their anger. If it’s not unions, my fear is that right-wing populists are going to just grab onto this... We have leaders now that are paying more attention to getting access to political leaders or holding hands with the head of Wal-Mart rather than actually getting and inspiring workers, irrespective of whether they’re our members right now, to engage in a struggle for justice.”

What do you think?

  • In your view, why has organized labor been losing the public’s confidence?

  • What role, if any, should labor unions play in movements for social and economic change? Explain.

  • Do you think labor unions have historically been good for America’s economy? Are they good for it today? Why or why not?

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    Corrections for post below: 1)Guess another mimetic factor that figures in the anti-public option frame (I forgot to mention) is that healthcare must be earned. This is built on the status quo that came before...totally arbitrary. It's like cell phone companies charging us $60 per mo (I use pre-pay). No one compares them to old Ma Bell's rates or public cooperatives or government run utilities, as privatized is now considered normal...say for instance in cable news "analysis." Anyway, it's gotta be earned from that frame. And, of course, this entails putting up the front and defending the front...that one has earned. Huge mimesis. 2)The public option's contribution to more healthcare jobs...primary care doctors etc...will it seems to me be indirect. More than likely this job sector also needs its own stimulus to boot. I see I wrote as if all the appropriations would immediately solve supply and demand problems, but from what I hear and read that's far from the case.

    I trust I've made myself clear as mud in your mind as usual?

    Glenn Canyon used to seem like a nice place to kyack or have a catamaran (during cool months). But I imagine the surface area is much smaller than 20 yrs ago...right?

    Now, I'm getting knowing what "Olympic Labor" is. I'm bout ready to give up on this isp altogether...believe it or not to Wiki the phrase would take more time than I've got. Maybe you could tell me and I'll read next time...corporation, union, what? Dunno if the following will communicate where I see mimetic rivalry relevant, but I'll try. Sure would be nice if you were right re people have seen the absurdity of the mechanism and want to back off a bit.

    Read the recent articles at Open Democracy on Berlusconi and Sarkozy (sp?). When things get centralized all must demonstrate alliegance. That's mimetic rivalry. $200 billion of gold bullion was just purchased by India I think from some European consortium, perhaps a consortium representing nations. Now the rich cats in India will have something they can all compete to latch onto. And latch onto it they will. That takes an item to get mimetic over...away from the West. Among big US banks the rivalry is in terms of getting gov backup (gov will shell out no gold; the taxpayer will shell out for the immediate fix...and will shell out forever if no one'll buy our bonds). The rivalry it seems to me is also in terms of the zealous style in which they and their wannabes spew laws...predictions: eg stocks are up, ergo economy is improving. These myths and dictums require dedication and of course...mimesis.

    Don't have enough time to think of a banking example, but here's one re the public option. The public option will enable more funds for increased clinic staff and hospital staff. The deficit hawks' argument is based on an incomplete frame of reference on the part of the less informed. They rely on mimesis: let's keep the money and the healthcare for people like us...these others are not allowed to belong. Mimesis in this case is blind to the necessity that the population needs care immediately, that employee health insurance is crippling our corporations, and that the population needs the additional healthcare jobs (any jobs) that the funds from a public option will support. Once upon a time we needed dams and jobs at the same time. The incomplete frame is like some kind of dream that they will always be the big earners and that more taxing will hurt them disproportionately. It is lala land. They cannot see that HMOs have gone haywire in mimetic rivalry with other cutthroat corporations...and that this extreme condition needs reforming.

    These examples may not depict the most extreme impact mimetic rivalry exercises over our civ, or the deepest...but are ones which occur to me and ones which I think have some relevance to our troubles.

    David H wrote, in part, "The merchants of cool have brainwashed'em and technique too [so many do mimetic rivalry now in terms of: who can mimic best the blase apolitical stars who decline cogent comment...and who apparently shun any potential ever to do so?]. I try to look at it from the frame of reference of the accused."

    It was probably a local airing on PBS, but hte documentary on the building of the Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River was interesting because there was no "mimetic rivalry" involved in that accomplishment of Olympic Labor.

    Joining you in considering the perspective of the "accused", in this case it's Olympic Labor, mimetic rivalry is ALSO not present in the current efforts of the Sierra Club to tear down all the Colorado River Dams, is it?

    The LIMITS of mimetic rivalry have been reached, it seems. Tear down everything that PROVES how incompetant WE currently are and let "nature", whom they also are incapable of mimick-ing, btw, teach us anew...?!

    Not everyone is blogging on this site dedicated to mimetic do-gooders...most of the interesting "bursts" of real live personality comes from encounters with real live people. A male friend had such a burst yesterday when it was "all abortion, all day"...he pretty much ended his "relationship" with that issue - it came out something like this...."...those &^%!#@ *&^%((*^ don't need to tell me how to LOVE the women in my life - I never knocked anyone up! one wants those $%&*(^ politicos &^&%%* &^$%^#$ in our beds and diapers and tissue boxes - GO AFTER WALL STREET AND END THE WARS! OR GO BACK TO THE HELL YOU CAME OUT OF"....

    SHould I have applied PCism and psycho babble and tell him he wasn't right? Or go get some "holy book" (which version, so many re-writes?) and tell him it's "god's will" to teach a woman her place in life by forcing her to carry a calcified dead fetus in her body until her body ("nature") expelled it "naturally"?

    "Extremist" as defined in my 1981 dictionary - "A person who advocates or resorts to extreme measures, especially in politics."

    Health care for Olympic Labor was at one point in time, "civilization" building.

    If they don't want to control "drought", what do the mimetics want to control?

    frame - Lakoff

    frame of reference - Einstein

    Dunno about sociopaths in so many cases. The merchants of cool have brainwashed'em and technique too [so many do mimetic rivalry now in terms of: who can mimic best the blase apolitical stars who decline cogent comment...and who apparently shun any potential ever to do so?]. I try to look at it from the frame of reference of the accused. My job is not to guess at the karma others may earn [granted, I "judge" sometimes when I associate "sociopath" with long humbling karma...don't others make this association as well?]. To understand the brainwashing techniques might be a goal for us here [or after Galbraith's comments, which I greatly appreciate, perhaps understanding or grasping our "powerful"ness vs the power of "rogue economics"]. I was reading your last post, Anna, far (as sifting the import takes time and the bandwidth devourers are waking up)...sorry, only a segment. Other than mine this comment of yours has elicited no response or endorsement. Is it because folks need it more broken down, or because the oracle has spoken as lucidly as is deserved and everyone realizes this except me?

    Serota was interesting on "Now" last night, but strange when talking of passion...he talked so evenly and measuredly. Alas, this seems to be the fate at this juncture of those who wish to summarize well. I miss Harry Shearer's sharp (emotional) satire (net's too loaded up now for me to stream him), and look forward to hearing him on Alan Colmes next week (watch, I'll sleep right through it).

    Nicole Sandler is pop'n up here and there, and when I hear her free over amplitude modulation...she seems as progressive and informative a host as any of the others. Very challenging for my level anyway. In the passion dept, however, that DJ Spooky number today on Bob Edwards seemed to look squarely at the deception.

    I am understandable once someone else has a go at editing what I write - lol

    "But between Enron, Wall St, and HMOs...the whole mentality of what's in the heads that buy trickle-down philosophy is plain: under the thinnest of guises, philosophies, rationalizations...just give all these your allegiance and...when your ship comes in you'll never have been on record as having advocated any you say: more money for me, me, me! What they advocate and want is no longer subtle. When philanthropists first started backing off gifts, they had to mystify how hedgefunds worked. Sort of conspiratorial. But now that we know how they work (roughly), those legs (those mysteries) they cannot stand on (or hide behind). Just my 2 cents.

    Posted by: David H

    The best reason to separate the laws of physics,

    of which time and space and "life" are but are the material manifestations of said laws with which we get to play and not the laws, themselves...

    from the "laws" of inter-personal relationships :-)

    is that you never get fooled into the magic act of that short skit I referenced - the one about how to construct a contraption that turns an act like a person making toast into a 2000 step "process" where the person and the toast never interact until the toast is delivered to the person.

    The "black box" constructed had one goal in mind - deliver ALL the toast in the world to one person who neither grew the wheat, laid the eggs, picked the sugar canes, started the yeast, well, you get the point, right?

    It was a heist - pure and simple - one big giant HOAX of "economics". What is our moral obligation to such "clever" people?

    The TRUTH is all those "clever" enron, wall st, hmo, etc. sociopaths have only ONE "industry" left to rob - "health care" and that's why the fight is so vicious regarding "legislation" you REALLY think the human species can survive with "biology" -

    at the fundamental RNA strand level where they are throwing money into doing -

    being in THEIR ideaological, cherry-picking-facts hands?!


    You see, it's about "survival" in it's most law-of-the-jungle, survival-of-the-fittest struggle - NOW, TODAY - with the psychopaths and sociopaths...

    can the NORMALS get their own "conspiracy" up and running fast enough?

    Yes. Step one - stop using their paper currency - it's a JOKE - 600 TRILLION in derivatives debt...? To whom...?!!

    The following information was available in Paper 42, which was delivered coompletely written, to a group of Seventh Day Adventists and some of their "friends" in Chicago in 1934. Paper 42 is one of the 196 Papers compiled into "The Urantia Book" finally published in 1955 and just as quickly "unpublished", if you will, because of lawsuits generated by that infernal "personhood" status given to a NON PERSON in USA "law".

    One reason, only, why I am quoting this one bit, it's as "evidence" for why we skipped right over lightening technology for consumer energy and went right to "atomic" energy to blow things up...

    the CENSORSHIP of The Urantia Book is one vicious-vicious "conspiracy" and I'm afraid that as part of selfish "survival" instincts, I can't be silent because we NEED a better "class" of USA people to actually read this book - NOT "interpret" it for personal profit. They have it ALL so tragically wrong in regards to the direction of "science"...mostly because they are too stupid to understand it and too nasty to "share" information.

    Here - Page 474 - "...The increase of mass in matter is equal to the increase of energy divided by the square of the velocity of light...".

    Now check the timeline from 1934 to Einstein's e=mc squared...get the drift? "They" are not as smart as advertised...

    Back to Planet Anna - the front page article at the ONLY newspaper in this podunk, neocon/oilman/wild west, dusty desert town - fully under the control of one psychopathic elite gang (think corn flakes dynasty et al) - is about a local woman who talks to dead people via the "voices" in her head. Because of this "talent" the political power "town fathers" tend to use her for "advice" like that magic 8 ball toy - "...does god still want ME to be rich?..."

    Now, I have to laugh, but still feel a teensy bit "guilty" about just how easy it is going to be to get NORMAL men on my side in such a "culture" as that one being promoted by the local rag of "news" - like shooting fish in a barrel - ALMOST not fair....

    A woman they CAN understand - WOW!

    Happy days are here again - lol

    See, David H, I am really am understandable! Thanks for trying from such a limited range of info as that gleaned from the internets :-) blogosphere...Jack Martin went off into his own fantasy about WHAT I am - you, at least, realized I was a WHO.

    ...and behind on my Lakoff reading.

    Well, that's a little better; glad you decided to answer. How we perceive each other one might guess unlikely, and I think phenomenologists could perhaps use us as a good case study. IMO you weren't saying clearly what you were implying. I didn't even read your comments below the list, because the way you introduced the list sort of implied the list was legit. Or, if I did read them briefly...they made no sense in the way you meant them to make me...without your explanation...they still wouldn't!

    Ok, the Protocols thing was used to manipulate a critical minority beginning in 1934? [You may view the "minority" as a huge throng of deceived people, but for me...I'll stick with "minority."]

    Then the Urantia thing came along attempting to debunk the Protocols gnosis, and set up its own?

    Both conspiracy theories (or conspiracy frames) were used to keep people from looking any further?

    Do I have it right?

    My supposition is that the original writers of both believed what they wrote. Publishers in general I would assume do not normally care what the political repercussions are of their pubs. My grandparents had a book entitled "None Dare Call It Treason," which you probably know of. In that case the publishers probably did care. Southend Press, for example, cares I'm sure.

    But I don't personally think the Protocols stuff or the Urantia stuff is/was critical...not statistically re most voters. The assumptions that are critical I think constellate around issues, not around lists. The questions stemming from the issues can be a bit conundrum-like. But of course the present path we're on demands that we help folks get past'em and get past superficial answers their framings imply. Thom Hartmann takes on such assumptions in short pieces with rebuttals ("What Would Jefferson Do?"). I am way behind on my Hartmann reading and my Thomas Frank reading.

    In a way the Bush II yrs have done the Democrats a huge favor. Though I have said I wish there was a 21st cent Vance reality we don't need one. We don't need to get into the nitty gritty of mind control conspiracy [Rene Girard and his explainers are IMO about as far as we need to go re control of motivation (vs control of argument via framing), but personally I have barely scratched the surface of their material]. It's ok in re to JFK IMO. It's ok in re to Iran/Contra IMO. Drugs/covert-ops are a crucial scam these days. But re bldg 4, eg, the evidence isn't out there for the masses. But in my estimation it's not a hundred percent clear we need it. Here we have institutions which are supposed to provide for general well-being trying to bleed people to death. The same goes for structured investment vehicles which were supposed to create wealth for Americans, not suck it out of their savings. We are both unlucky and lucky. We're lucky in the sense that we don't need conspiracy explanations in re to the manipulation of buying habits [mimetic rivalry theory helps with this but won't get specific; contrived bad logic and framing with re to politcal issues however we do need IMO]. Moyers did a good job with the shock jocks. Frontline did a good job with "The Merchants of Cool." But between Enron, Wall St, and HMOs...the whole mentality of what's in the heads that buy trickle-down philosophy is plain: under the thinnest of guises, philosophies, rationalizations...just give all these your allegiance and...when your ship comes in you'll never have been on record as having advocated any you say: more money for me, me, me! What they advocate and want is no longer subtle. When philanthropists first started backing off gifts, they had to mystify how hedgefunds worked. Sort of conspiratorial. But now that we know how they work (roughly), those legs (those mysteries) they cannot stand on (or hide behind). Just my 2 cents.

    Funny how the human species numbers 7 billion yet when we travel, today, from country to country,

    and travel through the past through libraries, music and theatrical performances re-interpreting "history",

    there still is so little in common, sometimes, so little that seems "relevant" from one competing selfish interest to another...

    yet, what we still stop to see about some "other" is how THEY chop wood and carry water...

    I don't think it is possible to strip the dignity out of the laborer.

    That truth, no doubt, strikes TERROR in the heart of those who would be "better" than the fruits of "labor".

    David H wrote, in part, "This thread should have more potential than has actualized in my opinion."

    Maybe the "potentials" are off on a new mimetic rivalry game - they're going to write a book FOR MONEY....?

    David H asks, "What are all these enumerated items quoted without source...enumerated presumably to the end that, in someone's mind at least, they "MAY BE PREVENTED"?????"

    I can't help you with reading comprehension. I can only reiterate the source of the list I cut and pasted on Oct 20th - the source is from the most CENSORED book on the planet, censored because it is a "hoax" - The Urantia Book.

    The OTHER "hoax", not as elaborate and one which reinterprets Machievellian political "feeling" - basic visceral hatred born of jealousy - is calle "The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion".

    Reason I pick these two is because The Urantia Book "hoax" is 2097 pages addressing "the protocols" hoax.

    Everyone is into digging out "secrets" - well, those two "hoaxes" - The Uranita Book and The Protocol of the Learned Elders of Zion are both extensively untilized by "politics and power".

    Even you, David H, seemed to have gotten brain lock when confronted with such a LIST - you might have thought that your thought never was thunk before until it was thunk by you...? :-))

    This thread should have more potential than has actualized in my opinion. I feel sorry for it. The most general statements are presented as if they are the only specific solutions. There are enough labor phenomena to keep a lot of people writing here for a long, long time...exchanging viewpoints...or is it your opinion that people should settle for your most recent analysis...chew on it...and just shut up?

    For the benefit of those not yet initiated into the "great pretense" [see Lao Tzu] it seems to me we should make things as clear as possible. Yep, I'd rather write for the uninitiated than for the choir, cause there's most likely more hope for the former.

    Fine goals you put up there on the 20th, Anna, but who today are the "unscrupulous"? What is economic fairness? In my opinion, it's the dominance of "novelty" and novel products (promoted, desired) that leads to continued mediocrity at large; there is no hint of this exploited paradox that I can see in your quoted list of evils. Did I miss it? The list doesn't warn us about the upwelling stream of novel things (items for consumption). It talks as though mediocrity is simply a big grey fog we enter like so many Elloi walking into the passageways of warlocks. (You're welcome to answer, AD, but I ask these questions chiefly because I imagine them popping in the minds of visitors...yes the minds that may ask themselves: What are all these enumerated items quoted without source...enumerated presumably to the end that, in someone's mind at least, they "MAY BE PREVENTED"????? Yes, I state these questions in have fellowship and a little solidarity with those whom I imagine may drop-in here for the first time...or who may return!)

    I wonder where this debating-airline-policy reason came from. Obvious lesson employees and conservative viewers will take home: don't discuss such things on the job(?)

    Posted by: David H

    I guess you aren't reading the posts on other threads...? You really should before you think you made a point on this one.

    Re my 8:36 post below I should have specified injuries on the job.

    Seems to me from what I know of "honest" manual labor in prior American times, people often burned out quicker in the body than in our time. It seems alienation today is more a psychological matter, though it also ends up impacting the body in its own way in its own time.
    [however, according to the most recent Harpers Index injuries or deaths, I forget which, have gone up in the past few yrs for undocumented at least 60% and down for the rest of us 10%] I often wonder if the mimetic shark tank of today's workplace (or the world which is home to such "work") somehow sets the stage for Alzheimer's (though of course I am aware of the accompanying change in brain physiology).

    For myself...I agree with Jacques Ellul's problems with Marx. But, re-reading this last night, I found how Ellul applied what he did get from Marx interesting...

    "Hence, when I say that Marx oriented me toward always siding with the poor, I am not necessarily siding with those who have no money. I am siding with people who are alienated on all levels, including culturally and sociologically--and this is variable. I will not claim that qualified French workers in the highest category are poor, even though they are subject to the capitalist system. They have considerable advantages, and not just material ones. On the other hand, I would say that very often old people, even those with sufficient resources, are poor, because in a society like ours they are utterly excluded. That is why I have sided with the excluded, sided with the unfit, sided with those on the fringes. That is why I keep discovering those who are the new poor in a society like ours."
    Jacques Ellul in "Perspectives on Our Age," Seabury, 1981

    Generally speaking, this is the plight of an ever younger "old" set in the US; for, as the HMOs will not cover enough of ones medical bills in this era (bills which increase with age (and worsening psychology in the work place)), many folks mature in years are losing their homes to pay off medical bills. So, it's even worse than what Ellul was talking about in the 80s. By the way, someone told me she had heard on a foreign station that, as a result of stealing a pack of cigarettes, the U.S. court had determined that the 80 yr old female offender had never become a citizen (though she had been in the U.S. many, many yrs) and deported her to Italy.

    I wonder where this debating-airline-policy reason came from. Obvious lesson employees and conservative viewers will take home: don't discuss such things on the job(?)

    Peggy @ Figgers,

    I don't want to bother people if they are going through difficult times.


    As promised, here are the “details” that the “devil” has. I don’t think that it’s fair for OLYMPIC LABOR not to have the same “list” (see Item 10 below)...

    “If men would maintain their freedom, they must, after having chosen their charter of liberty, provide for its wise, intelligent and fearless interpretation to the end THAT THERE MAY BE PREVENTED:

    1. Usurpation of unwarranted power by either the executive or legislative branches.
    2. Machinations of ignorant and superstitious agitators.
    3. Retardation of scientific progress.
    4. Stalemate of the dominance of mediocrity.
    5. Domination by vicious minorities.
    6. Control by ambitious and clever would-be dictators.
    7. Disastrous disruption of panics.
    8. Exploitation by the unscrupulous.
    9. Taxation enslavement of the citizenry by the state.
    10. Failure of social and economic fairness.
    11. Union of church and state.
    12. Loss of personal liberty.”

    That’s the SECRET HOAX LIST that has been used to organize any and all the “ists” (idealogues) of the 20th century since this list and the other secret hoax list – The Protocols, were distributed and used by the “in” crowd since 1934.

    “They” organized the “ANTI” of each item in the how-to-be-free list so that we could be where we are today – the 1% “OWNING” 90% - totalitarianism.

    Feel free to add your own “anti” activity to each item, here’s mine:

    1. Who the heck did Cheney think he was…?
    2. “Prophets” of the end times AND new age cults factoring in to decision making?! Yikes! No wonder why the decisions could not have been MORE WRONG!
    3. Honestly, evolution vs. creation – like wha’?! “God” has to do a magic act instead of ORGANIZE the material world into something less chaotic (evolution) than abbra ca dabra? Scientific progress should mean more than being rich enough to buy a 29 year old’s liver…
    4. See Hollowood in dictionary under “mediocrity” – talk about the promotion arm of “evil”! “Good” does not sell?
    5. Political correctness certainly got VICIOUS as a tool of the wannabe “minorities” AND their puppet masters – the “elites”…
    6. Dicktators – see “Cheney”
    7. Panics….so prevalent they’re COLOR CODED
    8. Exploitation? Naw, it’s the “economy”…
    9. Tax cuts to the RICHEST 1% so that they can create “jobs”?! THAT stunt was NOT taxation slavery of the middle class???!!!
    10. Slave labor, part deux….vengeance targeting the not-guilty – they’re still secretly after the Slavic “race” for being so stubborn and/or stupid in resisting ALL the “isms”…”resistance is NOT futile”….
    11. “Church” is the gossip-mongering whore of the State in USA – PG rated, TV “pornography”….I haven’t had the same perspective on “sex” since that day I came back to NY after being abroad. Not being current with “democracy” issues du jour, turned on Nightline to wind down from travel stress, only to find Ted Koppel talking about the “evidence” that Lewdinsky was not lying because she accurately described the physical appearance of PRESIDENT Clinton’s schlong and then, he, Koppel, read the description! I’ve never been able to recover from that media induced trauma and have had “Shields Up” against the media since then…
    12. Can you say “warrant-less surveillance”?

    I believe that the MICRO CHIP industry has signed its own demise with its vicious support for the brutal censorship of internet content (cherry-picked data) – what’s the point of being forced to buy your own chains to tether yourself to totalitarianism?

    Good lord, Peggy@figgers! Sory to hear about so much chaos!

    There has to be one more peaceful protest that is so massively attended that the science of the "mass" (weight and presence) "bends the curve".

    It'll happen, no more "astro turf" - the jackels who are happy to rip at the 10% of the "wealth" left for 99% of the population have been exposed and are irrelevant - the next protest will be real.

    I prefer writing up IOUs/paper "money" to each other to keep the whole infrastructure moving - but it seems that so few people have a clue about the real VALUE of what they are letting fall...if it really does many people haven't woken up yet form the brainwashing of the "left behind" crap?

    If their sicko prophecy gets self-fulfilled, it won't be 10 years before another major con job can be conjured up to steal it ALL..more like 1000 years and no doubt about it, the 1% can be found and barbequed if they're still in USA...

    I decided the slap the next person who starts spewing "end times" crap at me :-)) without being asked for their opinion about "god"...see if that works to wake them up...

    kidding, but only half-kidding

    Nlf and Ed Santoro: You have each listed an email. Please write to each other and tell us the results. Grady Lee Howard is hospitalized and preparing for surgery. Jack Martin's wife Coley Whitesides is in the hospital following a heart attack yesterday. Klark Mouvinon is being discharged from the convalescent home in Lansing, Michigan and I have to go pick him up and move him into Grady's house. This is a hectic time for the Figgers group. I don't feel qualified to comment on "evil" but I do know I feel worried right now. Our discussion here leads me to believe that people should not waste time and resources demonstrating because that time has passed. You just have to hunker down and fight
    with a fist full of pennies. Jack had said Sunday that both curtailing spending any way possible and committing harmless acts of mischief in your community as a way of communicating resistance were good strategies. The bravest of us were urged to write letters to our employers asking why our particular jobs have to be so predatory. He said we should hire an unemployed neighbor to do useful tasks if only for an hour. We interviewed some people Saturday who kept hurting themselves for insurance claims and to get out of work. One dropped crystal drain cleaner wrapped in aluminum foil in his gas tank and his car blew up and flash fried him as he ran away. Were they ever screwed up! What a crazy land we have become.

    Grady Lee Howard and Jack Martin:

    Several months ago I missed an opportunity to network with the two of you and have been meaning to hone my digital alliances.

    I can no longer get angry about anything; it's time to get busy.

    esantoro [AT]

    --- Ed Santoro

    Forgot to include an example of a classic body blow that David H was not above using:

    "At times I see you as trapped in an imaginary role where you feel a compulsion to introduce "the real world" to people on message boards. Other possibilities I don't have time to go into."

    Unless David H has used his meritocracy connections to gain access to WHC files the "internet" security crowd is gainfully employed in concocting, he is applying psycho therapy merely to damage the credubility of a blogger he does not know, never met, nor has any interest in finding reasons to respect.

    And the beat goes on...

    DH - "What is more penetrating to me is to look at the puffed up roll of the pretense of knowledge in this society...elegant meritocracy."

    AD - I disagree completely with your assessment of the why there is philosophical chaos surrounding the definition of "knowledge". Cherry-picking facts as the way to support a perception-is-reality theory is, to my way of thinking, the most incompetant way to maintain "power"!

    DH - "If you think I'm not aware of specifics...think what you like. You can write here as much as you like, but as far as knowing much about cults...nothing you have written convinces me I know any less about them than you, and that includes all the cadres and acolytes at every level that had any part in whipping up the blowback that is now headed our way."

    AD - Must be a guy thing, at no time during my conversation with you was I thinking about impressing you with the childish chant of "....I know something you don't know and I'm not gonna tell you - na na na na na..." I have every GOD-given right to build whatever shield I need to deflect the "blowback" off myself and if I find myself entertaining "revenge" as I build the shield, I use the unholy thought to improve the design of the shield so that it can be more efficient - that whole "kill two birds with one stone" ambition. So, okay, maybe there is some competition here between me and you regarding whose shield against the blowback is gonna work better. As you noted, "mass" and "inertia" EXIST.

    After taking body blows as a "dissentor" from the concoctors of the "blowback" situation you see coming, what makes you think I'm going to allow myself to be placed up front to take the first blow of the blowback?

    Not even Moyer bloggers can be that delusional, can they?, about well "perception is reality" is going to hole up against "reality" itself?

    I'm placing my bet that "reality" is still the bigger power.

    Critical mass and critical inertia...

    DH - "Which just goes to show that all of labor and all Americans need to get behind enforcing Kuttner's position: stimulus yes, bank bailouts no. A lot of stimulus for sure."

    AD - I'm not going to forget, Mister, and neither should anyone else, just how much FORCE it took to get the 1% to cry "uncle". If you ever want some NON cherry-picked data, let me know. Eventually some "job" might require that the off-off-Broadway play, "Eat the Runt", script be put aside and let IN-ELEGANT experience be set free to be COMPETANT once again. Seriously, how could USA have become such a powerfully progressive nation, up to the 1980s when the trajectory was re-set to FAILURE, if the majority of USA people were so STUPID?

    Elegant meritocracy I guess is cynical word-smithing of the reality the inelegant use - "rich man's idiot son/daughter"...

    As far as I can tell it looks like it was last weekend when Mexican president Felipe Calderon took over the country's government-run electric utility and fired 50,000 workers. In this search perhaps you can find some links to a stream of the story at NPR. If you get the right NPR link (with stream) you'll discover these laid off folks know how to make some noise. Course, if there were neo-con privatization strokes as broad and brash as that one up here (50,000 in one weekend) we might do likewise. What makes me think no one heard those voices on Fox?

    Jack Martin,

    You post a dire state of affairs. Is this the United States!!. You sound just like me, but are more in the know.
    I always do the right thing, no matter what the outcome, but I am just flabbergasted.

    My e-mail log is Please send me a message.

    Good to read your points, Jack.

    Anna, the word "existential" is imo in some respects burnt out. Have a feeling Rene Girard or Eric Gans or both have gone beyond it...and gone beyond Joseph Campbell too. Be that as it may, from my pov the cumulative impact of cults does not name the problem. Alas, it is more a problem of the masses. It is more a problem of all of us are frogs in water that is getting hot. No man is an island. "The Deputy" by Hocouth. What is the mass-frame that renders everyone prey to the myriad fringe groups? The mass amnesia, not the cranks and their shtiks themselves. You might attribute susceptibility to fringe groups to the internet (internet potatoes as Jack has suggested), but everyone already knows about the internet's effects. What is more penetrating to me is to look at the puffed up roll of the pretense of knowledge in this society...elegant meritocracy. If you think I'm not aware of specifics...think what you like. You can write here as much as you like, but as far as knowing much about cults...nothing you have written convinces me I know any less about them than you, and that includes all the cadres and acolytes at every level that had any part in whipping up the blowback that is now headed our way.

    For instance, there is a paradigm that sets itself up in war these days involving drugs. As far as I can see Moyers talking to Mark Danner tonight called such things, for example, "power structures."
    Within Ellul's notion of technique I could call them techniques. They violate human rights, that's what important...rites [superficial], though, are not what's important. It's the big techniques that get no name, not what you've heard all these loud-mouth talk show hosts "revealing" night after night (last night Alan Colmes said studying facets of the Federal Reserve was beyond his pay grade). Not scandelous enough iow. What you see as deliberate I see as simply technique rolling along without design or intelligence. At any rate, I am interested in this drugs-in-war thing. To see what's gone down in Afghanistan, for instance, I have to compare the accounts of Eric Walberg, Chalmers Johnson, Paul Fitzgerald, and Elizabeth Gould for starters. Why is it, Anna, I really don't think you're into anything this "existential"? I know, I know...all this isn't deep enough in there with the Bilderbergers, etc, etc. At times I see you as trapped in an imaginary role where you feel a compulsion to introduce "the real world" to people on message boards. Other possibilities I don't have time to go into. The subject here is labor. I have digressed enough. All are novices re this world...whom you address. There is no need for me to go on with you in more digression. IMO labor today doesn't see the education it needs to get. If it did see would probably shrink back. But there's no point in shrinking back, cause it can be obtained. Just keep nature and the Creator of nature in mind while you're at it, and it's possible it won't become an obession that wastes your sojourn.

    Speaking of labor, consider all the jobs and investment dedicated to the H1N1 vaccine. If no one ends up wanting it it'll be like one of those souped up structured investment vechicles won't it? I don't know what'll happen, but I'm wondering what lengths the manufacturers have gone to this time to protect themselves from compensatory actions in the event of harmful effects. I'm probably way behind re what's goin on with the H1N1 vaccine--all I can find at citizen dot org is what Frist wanted for the Avian flu vaccine back in 2005...

    "...headful of ideas that are drivin me insane..." ...everything it seems is like some kinda SIV in this world and the actual remaining SIVs are still what they're saying'll put Humpty back together again, are they not? Which just goes to show that all of labor and all Americans need to get behind enforcing Kuttner's position: stimulus yes, bank bailouts no. A lot of stimulus for sure. As "NOW" observed tonight in so many words: even projecting the public option is passed...where's the planning for sufficient medical personnel? Without it the public option won't have much to deliver. All the die hard tea baggers won't go away. Many will stay as they are within the new "synthesis" just as the hawks remained pro-Vietnam War after what they viewed as the dastardly pull-out. However, many changed their views...which is why we pulled out. I've read a couple of their books.

    Jack Martin wrote, in part, "Law did not turn out this way by accident. The canon of law is rooted in the advantages of those holding disproportionate private property."

    There are LAWS protecting the individual human being that are STILL on the "books", so to speak, that are as "jungle basic" as a person having the right to save their own life.

    Corporations came to OWN "jobs" and that's PURE slavery.

    It's all a bowl of crazy...

    Corporations own other people's thoughts - "intellectual property".

    Corporations own "free speech".

    The MACRO "idea" is that we all "own" the planet. How do we take care of what we "own"? That's still evolving. Granted, the trajectory of civilization was altered by insane, bloody revolutions of "isms" in the 20th century. The trajectory was bent back towards SLAVERY.

    When the law granting ownership of land to the serfs was in danger of being passed in Russia by Czar Nicolai and the Siem (yes, before communism Russia had an executive, legislative and judicial government), and "aliens" were going to be prohibited from owning FARM LAND, Trotsky got up on his soap box....

    Now WHY were "aliens" cut out of the loop...? Maybe 1500 years of watching the con men practice "bubble-ology", wrecking havoc to every country's infrastructure from Rome to Venice to Paris, etc. through slum lording and "banking" was good enough for the Czar and his Ministers....? Who can blame the REAL Russians for peacefully and scientifically and logically moving forward with better and better methods for "managing" Mother Russia's land WITHOUT depending on "slave labor" and con men/middle men...? Even in nature the amount of animals allowed to be "predatory" for survival is LIMITED. Wall Street ate it ALL because they have MICRO CHIPS and can fit all the carcasses on a main frame - is that real?! No.

    LAW is NOT dependent on "property". It's dependent on the individual HUMAN BEING - the absolute needs of life-maintenance AND the absolute need to love and be loved.

    Any other "idea" about law is pure crap.

    Look at how GIVING land to people who never managed it turned out - yup, armageddon. Some people just do not make good neighbors, do they?

    Jack Martin,

    I don't intend to run away. I am just wondering, that all people in the united states talk about this being a free and demodcratic country, but having laws that are almost compared to communist China, and other degoratory countries that have dictators.

    Are'nt you all ashamed, in calling this the "Land of the free and home of the brave".

    Is'nt Bill Moyers going to air someone to expose this.

    Nlf: Law did not turn out this way by accident. The canon of law is rooted in the advantages of those holding disproportionate private property. It is this oligarchic class that makes the rules and hires the intellectual whores to legitimize and implement them. Engineered cultural institutions, also termed superstructure, have been a hotbone of contention among philosophers because voicing the truth negates their funding.

    The only way you'll ever see "right to work", "fire at will" and workers compensation caps go away is if workers double up as owners and managers. The experiments in such alternatives are presently snuffed out by oligarical power. Too much power in too few hands is always disastrous for the people.

    I know very little. I have glimpsed through a pinhole at worker seizures in South America and at General Wesley Clarke ordered to bomb collective enterprises in the former Yugoslavia while avoiding global capitalist investments. I see independent farming so strangled by trade agreements and corporate patents that tillers of the land choose suicide in South Korea and Mexico. I see our land idle or developed and Guatemalan frozen foods in the freezer, only because of profit maximization. The "Invisible hand" is that of a psychotic.

    I'm not so smart, as you observe. But I do not fear being sued or called to account for what I say (on Talkback) because I'm doing the best I can to do the right thing. (Always do the right thing. Spike Lee) My words may be twisted or selectively quoted, but I believe those who share my plight and my sense of justice will always read between the lines and fill in the blanks. Advocates of egalitarian democracy are smart that way.

    So what else you want to know? How can I help? Maybe you could move to another state with better labor laws and a safety net. That's another means of "voting."

    Captcha: ing cicadae
    response: Yep, maybe we resistance strugglers go underground for prime numbered periods. We are not idle down there, but are nibbling at the roots of oligarchy, only to emerge at 7, or 13 or 17 years, such is human nature.

    To Most of you,

    Just minding yourselves, demonstrating how proficent and knowledgeble you are in your articulation in matters in the media.

    Just know one thing - everything starts in little steps. Have you every noticed that what you write is being recorded on the blog. Why?.
    are they hoping to sue you in the future. Isn't this a "Freedom of speech" country. But they will "Get You" whenever they feel like it. Right!!.

    How do you get rid of this accumulation that is piling up in the comments that you submit?.

    Next small step is, this country has no justice for the smaller guy. Remember the "Kick sand in your face" guy, somewhere on the beach when you are with your girlfriend. Where do you get justice?.

    Where is this "Work at will" law come in a Democratic country?. Can anybody answer with some facts and not your silly hype?.

    ....Now the question is - is their "SURVIVAL" gene stronger that MY "death wish"...?

    I did not phrase this correctly - I do NOT have a "death wish", never did - enjoy life too it looks like a clash between "survival" genes...

    Off to throw some clay into shape...hand made Xmas gifts from me are a big hit, they all make sure the piece is signed :-)

    Not even "low" life with "bad" marks in their past think that the NEOCON ghouls USING positions in "government" are anything other than "scum" to target people like me because Grandpa was part of Czar Nikolai's inner circle of trusted "knights".

    There was a GOOD reason for why certain cults were not going to ever have "property" rights - this latest morph of a mortgage scam is NOTHING yeah, let's keep that conversation going about who DESERVES to own property and WHY...

    Should be a court case brought against them and their "sovereigns" for conspiracy to bring down the infrastructure of the USA...indeed, who will RULE the middle east "empire" with USA $$$ and military dup-a-tion...? Stay tuned...

    I have not gone off the deep end with the spraying of chemicals on my property while I was NOT home - my neighbor, a 30-something friend, a male "care-giver" who is in with the in crowd in this desert town that IS a narco state, controlled by a "100" who have a long history in providing the DETAILS that allowed the mortgage story to unfold unmolested, and a 30-something poker player small time con artist who gets by with really good looks that snares many girlfriends with $$$ - all three men with ambivalent ethics in many ways, in their own OBLIQUE way, warned me of what Homeland Insecurity "agents" are DOING. Even such men, it seems, have MORE scruples about what is FAIR and SANE.

    You have NO IDEA, people, what the Trotskyites are capable of doing to someone who SURVIVES their "ism" exploits over and over again. Adelson has a lot of operatives - gambling debts - it's too easy, ain't it?

    EVERY ONE of you reading this post is NOT SAFE from the force and fraud going on BOLDLY in D.C. because there is NO ONE in Homeland Insecurity who will touch the NEOCONS because the NEOCONS ARE Homeland Insecurity.

    Get it? There IS no "cavalry".

    Now the question is - is their "SURVIVAL" gene stronger that MY "death wish"...?

    I don't freekin' think so....


    If "bad" things are going to be made up about me, I think it'll be much more fun for ME ME ME to come up with my own original "bad" ACTS...

    David H wrote, in part, "I have limited time but it seems as though you mean a general suicidal direction which may be augmented by some death wish on a large scale."

    I was actually thinking about suicide bombers and cults like Jonestown and Waco...all organization of "labor" - be it civilization builders or civilizations "protectors" - has been poisoned by the psychobabble of the cult.

    I guess when trying to establish a cult, the last thing you want is for anyone to remember how ALL cult leaders behave when their "power" is ending.

    It used to be so easy to be "employed" at a level of competance that fit the natural talent of ANY individual and the SIMPLE rules of the original labor unions were SANE in comparison with the crap that is going on now that the NEOCONS have everyone smarter than them blacklisted in the Homeland Insecurity database.

    We truly DO have a "Jim Jones" situation going on across the whole country...look how "wall street" is celebrating their "earnings" today - "...hey, our SCAM is still updrafting ANY paper $$$ in circulation back up to us..."

    I have NO MORAL OBLIGATION to believe in the "end times" and NEITHER DO YOU or anyone else.

    No one survives, over time, from a pre-emptive strike. And compound that insane mistake with INCOMPETANCE in "government" AND widespread force and fraud against all it's own citizens who do NOT believe that 0.2% of the world's population should bend the curve of global $$$ to pay for their CULT's wars...and tada - Have a Great Day!

    Since one person is doing the job of 20 people, the OBVIOUS thing would be for LABOR to go on would be just like that new TV show where supposedly everyone become UNCONSCIOUS at the same moment in time and had a "vision" of their own future...a LABOR STRIKE would be SANE people walking out of Jonestown fully CONSCIOUS that they know how to BUILD their own future..."olympic labor"....

    If it's a "cult" fight, I guess ANYONE can start their own...

    I never was an Oprah watcher - her promotion of Mr. Ray of Sedona sweat lodge fame, coupled with her personal wealth that's "on the sidelines" while heroin gangs club honor students on the streets of HER city, well, indeed she is symbolic of the philosophical chaos surrounding "political power".

    A government that commits force and fraud against the BEST of its citizens through every single venue of "civilization" - well, not the first time it's happening - that's why WE THE PEOPLE have the MORAL OBLIGATION to not pretend they "rule" us. "Jim Jones" et al need to be "institutionalized" and I am not talking about D.C.


    I am also NOT talking about Obambi. I am talking about the NEOCONS burrowed in Homeland Insecurity in charge, via "lists", of who lives or dies in the next year...they WILL spread various chemicals to give you cancer while you are not home (data on how easy THAT is has been around since Nazi MDs figured it out back when they had all those people in concentration camps to use for experimentation I could not figure out what was peeling concrete - yikes!), they share the lists (I made it on to every list with my "opinions" :-)) about who they are going to rob clean via "banks", and they go ballistic when there's nothing that they can blackmail you with, so they just make stuff up that never happened. What REALLY happened in the productive years of my life BEFORE the NEOCONS went completely off the rails was NOT information that they were gathering. It was a FAIR and GOOD and hard-working life. That's why it needs to be destroyed - do you finally get it, David H? "Existential" threats?

    How's Oprah going to put her billions to work on JOB CREATION...? Even building a better sweat lodge would be something...

    In her new compilation ("Bright-Sided") Barbara Ehrenreich deconstructs the "power of positive thinking" and concludes we suffer from a campaign of group-think and happy-headed social control. Anna's sweatlodge example is illustration of a localized instance.

    Ehrenreich says we are forced to suppress the logical reactive emotions to a cancer diagnosis or a job loss, mostly for the convenience of those exercising power over us. Most patients feel inadequate to question a diagnosis or a prescription, even when they've done some homework. Maybe that is why we have unnecessary treatments and tests, and why people are recruited into disease categories needlessly. Doctors themselves may be bogey-manned by an elevated fear that everyone wants to sue. (We could talk about liability equity, and reforming medical liability coverage by big insurers, but instead we discuss caps on damages and limits on suits, so that quacks can stay practicing.)

    If you think about it there is always the possibility of building your own sweatlodge, or just running your water heater dry. Right now there is a man on WFAE (9:50 am Wednesday) describing Nature Deficit Disorder, about how children need an electronic device to order them around and never want to go outside (evil strangers and dangerous animals everywhere?). Maybe it's worse than Ehrenreich knows. Maybe Barbara Ehrenreich and everyone should get outside more. Here in the Autumn (falling leaves) it can be hospitable, exactly the opposite of a hospital.

    To All:

    Did any of you see Moore on Charlie Rose yesterday. That is all there is to this adminstration.
    Hope you people will see the facts. No point in blabbering.


    May have been a Freudian slip, but consciously I'm NOT totally convinced that they're heading us to the drugs is the ultimate danger...

    I have limited time but it seems as though you mean a general suicidal direction which may be augmented by some death wish on a large scale. Death instinct material by Fromm I find difficult. OTOH I heard Manu Chao on Austin City Limits pretty much put it in the same general terms you do...sort of a message/warning he gave. It occurs to me too, William Stringfellow, if you've ever heard of him, wrote that in America we're preoccupied by and worship the principality of death ("An Ethic for Christians & Other Aliens in a Strange Land").

    Funny escape from givin us a link :) and no doubt very true.

    We could always go back and quote Packard (I am tempted to begin marking passages). But I wonder if we don't even need the techniques in their words. Between two schools...I think perhaps one can meld'em & come up with something better...why their techniques work. Between, for example, "Anthropoetics"...a secular pub and "Contagion"...a Xian one....both dealing with mimetic rivalry and the scapegoat. Maybe.

    I'm totally convinced that they head us to the drugs is the ultimate danger...but I think the ultimate danger might be in how they reinforce ambivalence in our motivation. It might might be the reinforcing of what ends up negative mimesis as opposed to "positive mimesis." If the messages and ads (even on PBS) keep that hook in us maintaining in us all kinds of mimesis (which feels like solace)...that ends up negative (in rivalries)...perhaps our "habit" of this- influence-followed-by-flesh-out is even more debilitating.

    I hope seeing my words here on these boards isn't mainly an act of mimesis. I don't wanna "teach" or "preach." I wanna share. My mother had the vision. She hoped all things and believed all things...truly. When I return to her world, it's not an unreality or a cerebral domain at all. It's trees and leaves and the shore.

    In your mind did I "spin away" from what you suggested re the fair, or are you saying that this world's-fair-idea of yours would be a nice spin away from the exploitation, propaganda, and alienation about? What are you saying???


    Posted by: David H

    First off, I do NOT have an obligation to
    "provide links" because those "links" do not exist! All schticks and tricks of "marketing" is "proprietary information" protected by corporate "law". You want a link to a page that is redacted between Dear and Sincerely...?

    Vegas "magik" acts are probably the best source of PROOF of how to trick a NORMAL mind - throw in ANY of the new generation anti-depressants that so many people are on (isn't prescription drug abuse the new competition for pot growers?) and maybe the TV commercials for drugs like Cymbalta and "suicide" side effects is enough for most people to figure things out. We're really NOT as stupid at adding two and two as everyone was hoping we would be by now.

    It is not MY idea (WORLD fair - WORLD means what?)

    When is the PROCESS of coordinating development in NORMAL directions of PROGRESS a single person's IDEA?! Why did we STOP having Expos and World Fairs?

    Because we "silo-ed" everything instead?

    Or because FOREIGN potentates have a MONO economy and a MACRO rulership? And DELUSIONAL aspirations about which "empire" is going to rule the middle east for the next 1000 years?

    I, for one, am tired of watching the Risk Board Game currently being played by psychos and sociopaths. And to add insult to injury - MY money is being stuffed in their pockets to PLAY the game.

    Civilization is a COORDINATION of "specialties". The proper USE of PROFIT is to water the economy.

    OLYMPIC LABOR created "wealth". There is no such thing as "trickle down"...anyone who PREACHES that absurd IDEA just HATES people. Period.

    Who "owned" JOBS? How can you OWN a "job" in such a way that you can "ship" it over to slave labor found god-knows-in-what-dark corner of earth?!

    How could there be so much PROFIT and so much "debt" at the same time?

    And if "counter-insurgency" is being practiced on LABOR in USA, why isn't USA LABOR being paid to NOT kill the "raiders" like they are getting paid in Iraq? Because we're all drugged?

    Why did the people NOT crawl out of that sweat tent in Arizona last week?

    Because if they HAD left before having an "out of body" experience as judged by the shaman in charge, a psychobabble profile would have been written up about them ("problem with authority") and distributed into the Federal Office of Personnel Management or some other big SECRET database and they'd be "blacklisted"'s a contract you have to sign to get an $8/hr part-time, no benefits "EDUCATOR" job in Arizona:

    "In connection with this application, I authorize all corporations, companies, credit agencies, education institutions, persons, law enforcement agencies, military services, motor vehicle departments, and former employers to release information that they may have about me to Lowell Observatory or its agents and release them from any liability for doing so. However, I specifically waive any right I have under Arizona Revised Statutes Section 23-1361.B or otherwise to receive or examine a copy of any written communication regarding employment furnished by any former or current employer of mine. This authorization, in original or copy form, shall be valid for this and any future reports that may be requested."

    You have to sign away your rights to EXAMINE the TRUTH of that ridiculously wide net of information that can be collected about you - seriously, isn't that nuts?

    You think that a psychobabble report put together by FAUX sweat lodge shamans and made public on the internet is NOT how the "republicans" rule LABOR in Arizona...?

    A Native American woman, assigned to clean up duty at the scene of carnage, had a local reporter stick a microphone in her face, and with incredulous confusion on her face, said that REAL native americans stay in the sweat lodge for only about 5 minutes - not two hours or more.

    SUICIDE is a WORLD-WIDE phenomena. It's psychobabble viciously directed at "vulnerable populations" via "religious" outlets and it is an EXISTENTIAL threat against NORMALCY in every society where it is being "seeded".

    Sorry folks, that ATC link I mentioned below was not posted in this thread on Saturday October 10, 1:48 AM, but it was put up over here at that time under the Moyers and Winship piece.

    Peace out, David

    No folks, I won't bother with the links anymore here. Labor has left the premesis.

    [But anyone interested in the unnecessary performance of medical procedures/surgerys in this land of ours, please see my "All Things Considered" link posted Saturday October 10, 1:48 AM "The Telltale Wombs of Lewiston, Maine" No folks, I'm not confused about the subj here...I'm just off topic.]

    Soon, Anna, my free time'll be gone & I won't have any left to keep on truck'n toward that space...where Jack Martin found himself with your writing. You need tighter association between all your concepts and all your sentences IMO, but I'm not tryin to run you down. Specifically, do you know of any pill-taking-reinforcement that was slipped into any hot dog commercial? Not saying I don't believe it's possible. I BELIEVE it's possible! I know they reinforced the habit of pill-taking for nie on nie on. It was a general reinforcement as you suggest, and it paid off big time. Vance Packard explained all that, and by now you should know that I know about Vance Packard. [I'm not convinced about any widespread subliminal message that all us boomers should off ourselves, and if they wanted us to incapcitate ourselves in the 60s/70s I don't think it was the design in the 50s to inculcate pill taking in anticipation of such future projects on their part. Hey, but I have read the 1st chapter of "Shock Doctrine."] Why keep on with the insinuations that I am not writing things here exactly as I conceive them...that is to say everything that is germane exactly as I conceive it which I have time to type? People show up here who have no idea about subliminal anything, Anna. Find a link that explains what you mean. They don't understand code talk. Bks like "The Hidden Persuaders" aren't around anymore (though "Capitalism, A Love Story" is).

    In your mind did I "spin away" from what you suggested re the fair, or are you saying that this world's-fair-idea of yours would be a nice spin away from the exploitation, propaganda, and alienation about? What are you saying???


    [Off topic...only linguistically related...but if anyone's interested in the frequency of unnecessary surgerys getting performed these days in this land of ours, please see my "All Things Considered" link posted Saturday October 10, 1:48 AM.]

    Anna, soon my free time'll be gone & I won't have any left to keep on trek'n toward, say, to that space in which Jack Martin found himself with your messages. Not there yet & not goin in that direction. You need a tighter association, but I'm not tryin to run you down. Specifically, do you know of any pill-taking-reinforcement that was slipped into any hot dog commercial? Not saying I don't believe it's possible. I BELIEVE it's possible! I know they reinforced the habit of pill-taking for nie on nie on. It was a general reinforcement as you suggest, and it paid off big time. Vance Packard explained all that, and by now you should now that I know about Vance Packard. Why keep on with the insinuations that I am not revealing things here exactly as I conceive them...all things germane I have time to type? People show up here who have no idea about subliminal anything, Anna. Find a link that explains what you mean. They don't understand code talk. Bks like "The Hidden Persuaders" aren't around anymore (though "Capitalism, A Love Story" is).

    In your mind did I spin away from what you suggested about the fair, or are you saying that you're suggesting this World's Fair idea of yours would be a nice spin away from the obvious? WHAT are you saying???

    David H wrote, in part, "But you still didn't explain the "suicide" thing. Sometimes, Anna, your allusions here are a little oblique."

    "Allusions"...? Really?

    Let's follow the bouncing ball of a narco state supported by "art" one more time...

    But you know what, David H, I seriously don't want to be even a bigger idiot than I already am in thinking you don't know EXACTLY what I am talking about...

    So I'll work in the REAL world and leave the burden of PROOF on the drug pushers and hollowood to PROVE that death, destruction and delusion SELLS better than truth, beauty and goodness...

    Nice spin AWAY from the OBVIOUS - a World Fair/Expo showcasing the clean energy infrastructure already POSSIBLE through science would suck all the CASH out of the current flow of drugs and "art"...after all, 99% of USA citizens have to rip off a piece of 10% of the carcass that the Olympic Laborers built - and keeping 50% of the 99% STONED with subliminial messages passed on through all the internet psychobabble RELIGION sites, well, so what? The "strong" will survive long enough to use up everything and be right back at the "civilization" level of swinging through the trees....

    Did you listen to my "All Things Considered" link posted yesterday, Saturday October 10, 1:48 AM?

    "The Telltale Wombs of Lewiston, Maine"

    But you still didn't explain the "suicide" thing. Sometimes, Anna, your allusions here are a little oblique.

    Corp personhood is very key, but there are keys legion...if you're thinking in terms of folks more open than the tea partyers. A few others eg are linked in posts here...

    [How convenient, my ISP lists everywhere I've been except Kuncinich's site.]

    I used to bellyache that no one nowadays covers subliminal persuasion like Vance Packard used to, but it appears that Michael Moore in his new flick "Capitalism, A Love Story" [germane to labor issues for sure] which I just saw tonight...has gone even beyond Packard. The Trojan Horse from Goldman Sachs is also covered about as well as one could expect by Moore in this flick; but here are some other rundowns from the last page of the thread I linked above...

    you'll have try pasting or go to Alternet's search & put in "fools of us all"; this one's not working when I click it in the preview 3A_goldman_sachs_has_made_fools_of_us_all_%28video%29_/

    Fed key
    "Dismantling the Temple" by William Greider, up on 7/15/09 (appeared in the August 3, 2009 edition of The Nation)

    machine trading key

    etc, etc

    For a while, some evil marketing mad men got their "ads" - what I am calling "flash cards" - inserted into the movie reel at drive-ins (you DO know about Drive-In Movies, right?).

    Because of the amount of seconds that the flash card of a hot dog (or whatever they were selling) was so quick, MOST people could not consciously "see" it, but the ad WAS caught in the organic brain SUBCONSCIOUSLY....

    I find it scary that you did not know about that marketing/political schtick back in the 1950-60s! That just means that no one now is watching for NEW "flash cards" brain-washing tricks!!!! Yikes!

    "Corporate personhood" is the key to defining this massive THEFT for what it is (c'mon, we're back to a wealth distribution of the "gilded age" - that's just sick). If a corporation stops being a "person" and "shareholders" the parasitic "life" form on the "person", then PROFIT will be able to organically and sustainably water ANY "economy" the way it should be - through the distribution among LABOR.

    How can there be so much PROFIT and so much "debt" at the same time? It's stupid. The only math formula in opertaion today is one crapped out from the moral bowels of some self-proclaimed elite class of sociopaths and psychopaths who irrationally HATE everybody and everything...and they continue to quote from "holy books" written by sociopaths and psychopaths across the centuries :-)) to rationalize their hatred and re-create "end times" over and over and over and over and over and over....again. It's CRAZY.

    NONE of us have a MORAL OBLIGATION to be ruled by crazy people and their stupid math formula:

    More misery for others = more money for ME ME ME.

    Well, re the tea partyers I touched on the barring-triage thing right below early, early Saturday AM 1:48 Oct 10 (today).

    The other thing that strikes me as important is that they could go much farther into realizing who's reponsible for the "free trade" trap, and realizing just what it means and where it's brought us (can't remember if that's what that book "The Trap" is about). If the dollar loses its major global exchange modality the whole sense of things seems to be that we cannot do one protectionist thing. If we wanted to make jackets down in NC once again with decent zippers (or shoes eg anywhere in the US) there'd be some action brought against us over at WTO hdqtrs.

    These two things might be my answer to Lakoff and Thom Hartmann. No doubt, their writings have helped us immensely, but sometimes I think that despite a lot of interesting pages...something essential is not getting stressed. But I could be wrong.


    1)Seeing their own hypocrisy on triage
    A. the "free trade" rigid enforcement of current arrangements
    B. which party sold it to'em as unencumbering trade per usual

    IMO the problem with the B-thumpers is that even if they'd accept triage in their own life decisions...they want to preach that it must be law that we always go after the 99th sheep. If they wouldn't do it in their own lives, then why preach that our laws should force everyone to do so?
    A nation's law IMO will not successfully accomplish this. The laws of nations cannot even design economies in European countries that will prevent immigrants from resorting to theft. Our nation's laws don't seem to be able to do much about drive-bys or uninvestigated rapes of Native American women. When it comes to the laws of humans...they function best it seems to me on a triage basis. There is no one crime the elimination of which will quickly lead to the end of all others.

    Maybe we can put away the violin for a little while again, cause the "Now" tonight on end-of-life choices demonstrated that for sure there is sanity in America.

    There might be a high concentration of sane people in Wisconsin. The show was so good it made me realize what PBS needs to do to get more contributions...give one his/her pick of maybe three shows on DVD. People mistakenly think Fri night is a good night not to think so they never see Moyers or Now, but we could give them DVDs of the shows!

    Next wk on Now I think will be nurses. They're gonna have to pay nurses more. Why should the whole thing be a secret re how hard they slave? How the paper wk is impossible to finish? That's gonna be tough cause hospitals inc are gonna whine. But the people need affordable care and quality care. How nice it'll be when this fashionable-to-be-burnt-out-in-the-hospital chapter is over.

    [There's another secret you critics of end-of-life-choices haven't discovered...the quality of life on a ventilator after 14 days (granted, there are times it's appropriate). Some way you need to find out about this.]

    Will be a good school marm and ask you, Anna, to explain yourself in a little more detail re the flash cards eg. Your generation decried "pop"? Which? Generation X did, and didn't Y a little too?

    Sounds like you might be worried about "generation A." Generation A is a designation that novelist Douglas Coupland (pronounced IIRC pretty much like Copeland) has arrived at/conjured. Heard him briefly interviewed on NPR but am unfamiliar with him unfortunately. Hey wait...just found this (now I'm really glad I decided to respond again)...

    PS Scroll to "The Telltale Wombs of Lewiston, Maine" ATC Thur Oct 8

    PSS Forgot...I also bought one Coldplay concert DVD. Dunno if you like it (or would like it), but I like a certain kind of Cuban music with vocals. A lot of it apparently is current. It seems to moi as though most of the songs in this little genre all have the same piano chord progression in the background, which goes its own way vis a vis the main melody (of course the main melodies vary). The percussion goes all over the place. Don't even know if there's a name or designation for the stuff or a name for the attributes I like about it.

    I wonder if the health insurance company's "NO SOUP FOR YOU" employees benfit, as human beings, from not being in a "union"?

    Would "labor" REALLY be unhappy if UNION management told them quoting from the bible to screw someone out of medical care was NUTS?

    When you examine LABOR in this country, you can't IMAGINE that the generation of Europeans who worked 14 hours in the factory forging out oceanliner's STEAM ENGINES and other OLYMPIC-style physical feats (Olympic games in today's work are so peurile compared to what real people were TALENTED enough, physically, to do back when, for instance, the Hoover Dam was built - talk about eye hand coordination married to acrobatics!) then such "labor" got together with their neighbors and "barn-raised" churches and community centers and schools....that that generation of "labor" would quote from the bible to HURT another person...idealogues, with their "lists" and pretense at "intelligensia" are insane - restless brain syndrome or something, don't know, will take time to figure out their sickness, but in the meantime, they need to be lead away from the levers of "power"...

    When I look at the decaders in front of me and behind me on the linear time scale of "age", I have to be honest and say that perhaps the most unimpressive generation on USA history's time scale are the cubist appartchiks who quote from the bible as PROOF that the person on the other end of the communication device to whom they are saying "NO SOUP FOR YOU".

    But that's the schtick, right? Endless delusional psycho-babbling of everything and everyone....I believe that the maximum amount of political "power" that PCism could achieve through revisionist-serving personal destruction of the REALITY of the talent of the labor of the generations that put the street up under the arse of everyone sitting at their laptops in NYC is OVER.

    So before the 20-somethings become even MORE useless as human beings in LIFE MAINTENANCE skills, they need to be rounded up, dried out from booze and wha'ever, and given the MISSION of putting on a World's Fair/Expo to showcase the infrastructure of the new CLEAN ENERGY world.

    Period. Enough with the yaddayadda and poor-me violins carrying some kind of subliminal frequency, like the hot dog flash card at drive-in movies, planting the seed in a drugged mind to commit suicide. Yup, it's even flash-carded into the music...MY generation openly keep saying, "...what's wrong with the "pop" musics - it s-cks!" Thaks to consistent credubility I've LIVED, people take the time out to hear my tale about "secret" terrorist campaigns...

    Since the DATA indicates that Charles Dickens-era England should arrive shortly, I'd like to see "Quadraphenia" by THE WHO get a high-energy interpretation as REALITY launches an "energy" Expo.

    Now I'm off to "CSI", so to speak, how the theft of "stocks" from the OLYMPIC LABOR generation was plotted and carried out by the "silicone valley" pervs and perts...

    Hatred for OLYMPIC LABOR has no rational explanation. At least the theft of their fruits CAN be taken back. So be afraid, be very afraid :-)

    You're welcome. It's "depressing" because it's so long forgotten and removed from our experience today. Ya gotta own it, that's all.

    Well, on NPR I just heard some Redcoat doublethink-expert prof explain how the numbers dictate that ALL DEFINITELY SHOULD PAY IN, and that perhaps gov could subsidize poor etc. The penalty'll be a couple hundred & the insurance could be a couple thousand. I agree with what you said about this mandatory thing. The story is here at the Morning Ed Fri link below somewhere, but the Morning Edition "rundown" page is a piece of junk if you really want a rundown (all the bandwidth now goes to pictures)

    Might not get the spelling right, but just check out Elise Spiegelman's report on All Things Considered last night on unneccessary care given. More care delivered in the U.S. right now does not always imply (after a given threshold) better health! Sometimes worse. Spiegelman concluded with: costs incurred from unecessary medical procedures etc in the U.S. per yr = $600 billion. Let those who get no care eat cake I guess.

    Yeah, meanwhile the poor get not enough and are busted down to nothing for what they get. Quality of life for the average Joe/Josephine? Today it's programmed out of our minds. Only "idols" Precious knows. Hedges was right about idols. Decent healthcare. Decent working conditions.

    I'm sorry you can't get on the wavelength of the poet of the people Knopfler. We have news movies about Keats and probably scores of new bks about him even today, but writ'n in the average Joe's vernacular today is not celebrated by the meritocracy (they think they've captured it in the gritty stuff...but they haven't really expressed the words of the mind). Oh well, the people'll buy up "Get Lucky" anyway. Yeah, some decent jazz IMO still creeps into FM studios these days. The only music DVD I ever bought was Joe Pass tryin to teach guitar. When rock went to sleep post Vietnam pull-out IMO fusion sort of filled the gap in the 70s, but now it's fusion's turn to snooze. The other day I heard something that sounded like it could be the up to date DiMeola...after the 70s heyday to me this is just depressing (but it might not have been him). Hooplah anywhere makes audiences think its cutting edge where they're at, whatever genre. I was amazed to see all the light theatrics Coldplay utilizes. IMO they don't need'em...ah, but right now I'm not in the mood to hear cryptic disjunctive lyrics.

    Like you say, the visions crash. Simple living was envisioned and sung about in the 60s, but compared to Knopfler's stuff...the integration of lyrics and melody wasn't as good for a few folks. Melody...the muse seems quite particular these days. Simple living...we have to get a feel for it...or recall a feel for it if we ever knew it prior at all. Contriv'n it would be hypocritical and bad art. Knopfler finds that treasure; I wonder if that song is really about childhood when at least boomers heard the tales of simple neighbors with their gardens & bootleg...or when they (the boomers) actually entertained themselves out on the edge of a field. This isn't just some Rosseauian romantic thing. If we don't envision now what'll be worth livin for when the gas is rationed, IMO we'll catch something real hard upside the head. See that Vonnegut petroleum-cold-turkey link I put up October 3, 2009 at
    12:23 PM.

    Thanks for the link, David H. - pleasant but what I call "depressing" music.

    I'm a big jazz fan...attended a fabulous concert this past summer in a foreign land - Al DiMeola put together a quartet with individual talent he met on his travels...I know this is going to seem like, maybe, a hoax, but it's true. The "unknown" Russian accordian player played some transcendant jazz with Mr. DiMeola at that overseas concert..."Paradise" music - "organic food" :-)) for the mind/soul.

    Back to HELL on earth - IF IRS is given the power to levy fines against people who do NOT buy "health insurance" from the cabal of UHC, BC BS, Aetna, etc etc...then we'll have a MAJORITY third political party in the USA - for real.

    It's the LAST possible ponzi scheme (updrafting money) left for the NeoCons - ABUSE LAW to enforce it - that's just how far they went this time with "health insurance"...."devil in the details, indeed"'s a PONZI SCHEME...updrafting money to the black hole pockets of psychotic "rulers"....they have to BUY their own toxic assests - the made up sotfware formulas..MORE MISERY FOR OTHERS = MORE MONEY FOR ME ME ME...

    Normal people as slave labor servicing the abnormals....does that qualify as an "existential" threat...?

    What an ABUSE of a fine English word - "existential".

    Even the CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION is an tax payer waste of money.Remember the three female workers whom smoked after work hours and got fired.They did nothing for them.That happened in MICHIGAN.

    Hey David H,

    The only "vision" I had today, after my toga rant on another topic :-), was Senator Bacchus throwing a frat house toga party celebrating "mission accomplished" in throwing the uninsured into the lions den to be devoured. Place your bets...

    It appears our "legislators" have evolved a new age (i)dealism - togaism...

    More misery for others = More money for ME ME ME.

    Favorite spin came from Shalayla (sp?) - former head of HHS - " one can say that their voices weren't heard..."

    LISTENING, I guess, is another story.

    The visions that are "enforced" at this juncture are industrial consumerism, empire, Realpolitik, meritocracy (full of zealous mimetic rivalry), and shock doctrine. There are many ancillary to these, such as eg the Chicago School's "vision." I grant you that the sets of visions we find intersecting the set of those in the first sentence...are trumpeted so incessantly that they seem to be enforced, but IMO the aforementioned are essentially the ones that are enforced.

    The word "vision" may sound grandiose, and IMO the underlying reason it may is because Jacques Ellul was right...our society exhalts the visual at the expense of the verbal (unconsciously perhaps we are weary of this). Suppose, as Michael Moore suggests we pick and choose the best facets from the world's healthcare systems, one were to try in like manner to name the values in America that were best. We could try to do this with words, and without ever using the word "vision." Perhaps we could look at all the currently enforced paradigms and ask ourselves: Where was the opposite in evidence?

    "Inverting the Economic Order" by Wendell Berry
    Oct 2009

    David H, "I think it is possible to drown out the tea partiers, but the vision has to be re-apprehended first."

    I have had it up to my throat with the enforced consumption of other people's "visions"...up to and including seeing "mary" in a tortilla chip and "jesus" in a wood chip.

    The scientific DATA is crap, Dude.

    The perfect amount of sunlight to support "life" is hitting this planet and NO ONE wants to repeat that "process" of sustainability. And don't go mining the internet for astro-physicist stoner "theories" about "solar" minimum - all you'll get excited about as "real" will be the HOAX from 2005 about Mars looking bigger than the moon...

    The whole natural gas SILENCE speaks volumes...but the REAL SCIENCE will tell you that what makes natural gas the ONLY winner for transport is the fact that it burns completely clean. With any other LIQUID fuel, pollution of the planet will remain extreme! Don't even get me started on the pollution and damage to yet ANOTHER strand of "life" on this planet that the whole "personal computer" era did...

    But I remind myself every day that the fellow-citizens that are DEMANDING rational POLITICAL conversation (talk about your oxy-MORON) to solve the problems that THEY CHOSE when they bought their SUVs, damaged their brains with BOOZE, meth and coke - which are just the visible tip-of-the-iceberg material manifestations of their utter and complete inner ME ME ME hedonism and freak show "ethics", their LOVE of money, and, for the grand finale, their "gene" research into "WHY am I such a lying, cheating, thieving, murdering schmuck"?

    In USA history, there has NOT been an ENTIRE generation as incompetant as the one sticking it in everyone's face with the "I won" schtick that we have IF the rest of us - both older and younger - have FORGOTTEN everything that was done to others so that YOU could "win"...?!

    Waste of time to talk "science" with such a "generation". Truly and really IS a waste of time.

    As proof, the only MATH formula they ever followed was this SIMPLE one:

    More misery for others = More $$$ for me.

    No "sunlight" for YOU.

    "If National Parks are America's best idea, then how about trying the same thing in the workplace?" Grady

    It is amazing there aren't at least 10 posters here asking the same thing. My phone's been down, so my net has been down too for a while. As nlf sez, we go about trying to fix the world's problems...and yet our "economists" seem confounded that they must mouthe: Yes, the recovery is here, but the jobs aren't. They seem to intimate a feeling of: What was it I forgot to read in my college courses? Oh man, what an example in the last few days...the mayhem of Chicago vs the mayhem of Rio. Re the mayhem of Rio...check out the latest "New Yorker" if you don't know what I'm talkin about (perishable link below)

    The prez wanted a little bit of civ to trapse through the windy city, but unbelievably IOC found a place that needed it even worse (or one that unbelievably had piled up even more graft dollars to buy'em off with, or, as one commentator opined today: this was a way resentment against the U.S. could be expressed without repercussions...oh man, how those repercussions glitz up the default impression of the world's impression). But Grady was right about the solution...the National Park series puts it right under our noses. Oh no, I can't go dig dirt with some kid into gangsta rap. No, you don't think you can cause YOU KNOW what structured investment vehicles are and he doesn't. But look at it closely, those SIVs are as big a pretense as Joseph Kennedy's right to all that dough he made in the market in the 20s. These bubbles are based on groupthink...mimetic rivalry. When we go into'em...all the decent livelihoods are forgotten somewhat and atrophy (the same when Rome went from wheat to speculative corn futures). Versus in those better livelihoods there was sometimes a little solidarity among workers. Fork silage all morning in the spring air, and at lunch you're in a good mood cause you feel like you've done something. Whereas the cube jobs of today are ones lot in hell one "earns," cause one did not merit something better. Go in there and suffer, and someone will unconsciously and sadistically enjoy watching you suffer and squirm with the software written by some poor agency smuck working overtime for Bill Gates. They can go on, cause of this thought in their heads: At least I don't have to do the crap on the scale he does. We've lost the solidarity. The trust in the fellow worker not to fork ya. The clouds above and nature all around you. Right, right...historically it was not enjoyed by everyone. And I know, it can be bad. As in serfdom. As in Brendan's dad (Buechner version). As on the Russian communes post 1917. But the sad part is...that all the good experiences of Lake Wobegone (all over the place prior in the US)...are not things we Americans struggle to obtain anymore. A whole era never got the message they were worth struggling to get. We arrived but we didn't know we arrived.

    And the sad, sad fact is that Grady's right about the "uphill battle" thing too. I hate to say it. I'm not trying to union bust. I even hope unions prove me wrong. But the unions got outwangled just like the voters. It was all some kind of euphoria re products and pills and sex consumed like a product...and it got almost every single one of us. Live and learn, we need a new vision. Kuttner said we need a Roosevelt-scale mortgage refinancing program; but the truth is we also need a Roosevelt-scale public works program. Greater even than that, cause sooner or later we're gonna realize all the no-bids of cold wars, asymmetric wars, or even WWIII won't be sufficient...and sure'nuff aren't worth the trouble. Shoot, we'll be lucky if we can get little ferry barges together where there used to be bridges, face it! Remember Vonnegut's essay
    "Cold Turkey" (or had you forgotten...cold turkey comin in regard to petroleum). Yep, he could say whatever he wanted to say, cause everyone could judge him a cynical old fart...with dementia creeping on. But he was sharp till the end and right.

    I think it is possible to drown out the tea partiers, but the vision has to be re-apprehended first. A vision of just valuing good food and health is so confining, humbling, and retro you say? But I say stewarding our little corner of nature is a huge mission going in an entirely opposite direction from: maximum corn production in heartland for ethanol-->more nitrates runoff in the Gulf-->hot Gulf-->bigger hurricanes, etc., etc. It'll take full concentration and dedication. There's not as much octane involved and not as many stoned-out pipe dreams of riches, but se la vi.

    To all this I could stand hearing a few right-on's. From the regulars or anyone. And if anyone else has suggested (before Grady) what Grady suggested...I'm here to say right-on to you! The tea partiers have to get over their fear of planning. But our camp has to re-apprendend that solidarity means shoulder to the wheel...way, way, WAY beyond "good enough for government." A lot of planning and a lot of spending is, to say the least, imperative. I'm not here to say I'm morally superior because I understand this. This is a time to "press for the mark" it seems to me, surely not thinking I have attained. Judging almost seems impossible...we've all been so brainwashed.

    The big screens just aren't going to get it anymore. The newer and newer cell phones and I-Pods just aren't gonna do it anymore (until we address things like Realpolitik re minerals in the Congo...and water issues re rinsing circuit boards). Assembly lines in general aren't gonna do it anymore, save maybe with respect to mo-peds, solar collectors, and parts for existing hardware. It's gotta be a whole new vision. The technology's not gonna save us, exactly where Marx got it wrong according to the most astute critics as far as I can see. The whole zeitgeist of former union members has gotta change. Paradoxically, it seems to me there can be some hope for "service" worker unions and farm worker sometimes, under some conditions, their tasks are less insane and more akin to those of workers in a green economy.

    Jack Martin, "...When we say we believe in the reform of the private property concept and the abolition of elite contract we only mean that the simple ideals accessible to the average citizen have been perverted by concentrated power produced by corruption."

    Still not getting it, Jack.

    Maybe I'm just deaf from the ringing in my ears from social engineers who got in front of the massive theft of the nest egg known as "house" for the labor class so loudly and repeatedly with the IDEA that "not everyone DESERVES to own a home"....isn't that what you are STILL saying?

    Jack Martin,

    you spoke for Grady, but the truth stands, not for grady,or the people who accept this abuse. We suffer everyday because of these kinds of laws. I do not have anybody to fight my case and this is like being put in a lion's den with a long stick. Emagine what will happen to me, and this is happening in a so-called 1st world country that goes about trying to fix the worlds problems while having no deciency in providing justice for the common man.

    Does anybody want to enhance this kind of hyprocracy?.

    A criminal is given a defense lawyer but not for a Civil Case, at lease they should consider the financial predicament that this person is going through. No!!, not even the judge will approve a Pro Bono lawyer - and the best part is, the defense has to approve it.

    Who made up this kind of a system?.

    I for one will not walk away because Arizona is a "At will" employer. Sure the employee has the right to walk away, only if he gets a better job, but if the employee is fired - what happens, the other employees pick up the slack. So, why make a law that favours the employer in such an unjust way?.

    I will not accept being fired because my integrity is going to be abused. No Employer has the right to accuse anybody by false allegations and expect the employee to walk away.

    I will fight to the last to stand up for what is right.

    Grady Lee Howard is not a "communist" in the common parlance, and neither am I. Grady is presently employed by Morgan Stanley in its Manhattan headquarters as a publicity writer and public relations consultant. He formerly worked at Goldman Sachs in a similar position, is a semi-retired film actor (48 years) and also worked more than a decade as a Congressional staffer. He speculates in commodity futures and uses his gains to subsidize independent films. He is married and lives in Edison, NJ. He owns a house near where I live in NC.

    Grady suffers from dwarfism which has also shaped his personality. He is about to undergo corrective surgery with a high risk factor, but could no longer endure his painful disabilities and pain relief prescriptions. Grady has told me that it also hurts him to be called a "communist" because his aim is to be a patriotic humane American citizen. I do not think of his recommendations as extreme considering our dire conditions.

    He advocates the deconstruction of corporate personhood and the ability of the taxpayer to designate the uses of his or her levied amounts. We both idealize community level capitalism, but advocate for new cooperative forms of enterprise. No new or radical ideas are involved. When we say we believe in the reform of the private property concept and the abolition of elite contract we only mean that the simple ideals accessible to the average citizen have been perverted by concentrated power produced by corruption.
    "People have the potential for good but are corruptible because the law allows too much wealth and power to accrue in too few hands. Individuals deserve what they can reasonably manage, but great wealth and responsibility should be a public matter." Grady Lee Howard

    Thanks for letting me speak in behalf of my friend as he is incapacitated. Please keep him in your thoughts and respect his self-described identity.

    Grady Lee Howard,

    You are so apt at describing, the Capitalist Regime.

    Please remember "The land of the free and home of the Brave" doesn't apply to this country,especially Arizona.

    All these employers have mission statements, They should put in chains, and made to walk around because of this hypocracy. This is just like a communist country that has no need for Democracy.

    So please do not go about having your head in the clouds, you are a slave in the 21st century. This shows your socialist/Communist Attitude. By your attitude,I know you are living high and dry.

    Work at will and Right to work must be disbanded. It only shows how lowly the management and laws are in this country.

    I for one would not go about bragging about it.

    At some point "work at will" and "right to work" labor laws were being discussed (before gender identity and sanity became the big issues). Work at will means there is no guarantee your job will continue tomorrow, and that the employer determines the conditions of separation. (The employee is free to walk away broke too.) Let us say the job ends for whatever reason. If you're "fired" rather than "laid-off" this just means that the employer expects to have no need of you in the forseeable future and has denied you a stipend. Laid-off then is not a social safety net unless you're an employer, who might need experienced workers fast at a later time. 26 weeks is 6 months and 39 weeks are 9 months. That's about how far ahead business managers think. A fired worker is like a MacDonald's wrapper.

    Right to work means no one has to join a union or pay dues (sometimes) to a union that has been popularly voted in at a workplace. This give the employer leverage to divide and conquer and undermines the union's validation of skill and meting out of on the job iscipline. Contract obligates the union to supply people ready to do the work at hand under agreed rules, but if some workers do not pay dues and are not members the obligation becomes problematic. If the union cannot mobilize reliable labor then it really has no power at all in the current system.

    Like worker compensation (a cap on damages for injured workers) union protections in the United States are often a sham. The employer can use expensive anti-union law firms, security and even thugs, but if a union does this it falls under the conspiracy clauses of RICO. Unionism is an uphill battle in a rigged system.

    A better strategy would be worker self-managed and worker owned enterprises. Are unions a step toward this? They haven't been in the past. If National Parks are America's best idea, then how about trying the same thing in the workplace? A man (supercilliously) asked me on another page how we get to a more egalitarian distribution of income. "Paychecks, my man, paychecks."

    Anna D,

    I missed out "With".

    Anna D,

    Since you have deviated from our original statement, I am no longer interested in communicating you.

    And no, I am not ma'am. I am a man.

    Read your history.

    Posted by: Nlf

    Not my history, Nlf. White boys who came over here were given the choice to rot in jail in Spain, England, etc. or take off across the ocean in discarded sailboats.

    And, yes, since Homeland Insecurity has been conducting warrantless surveillance, "identity theft" piggy-backed like a parasite along for the ride. Cavassing my friends, let's see, it was Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Brazil, Jakarta, just to name a few of the countries from where the theft of identity happened. Also a lot of "military" families seemed to get hit...

    "Just the facts, Ma'am."

    Anna D,

    "About health care"

    "So WHO or even WHAT "idea" is watching out for me"

    you told me to get out and run, so why are you complaining. Kyle is going to get you, Ha! Ha!.

    Anna D,

    "Thanks for proving my point about homeland INsecurity making it easier for psychos to get at the NORMALS"

    Was the Bombing at Oklahoma City committed because of Homeland Insecurity. Or the American Taliban that was caught a few days ago because of Homeland Insecurity. Or the Rape of the Indian Nation of the lands and women, expecially the Cherokees, or the many criminals and bombings done by the Ku Klux Clan dome by Homeland security. or the Hanging of the Fed in Kentucky done because of Homeland security.
    Read your history.

    No amount of "happy pills" or "religious zeal" is going to overcome the need for human necessities.

    Posted by: D.C.Eddy

    I completely agree.

    People in health insurance companies were acting in the interest of BOTH - enjoying, on a personal level, the POWER they had to screw you over, AND in making PROFIT for the corporation. No wonder they are fighting so hard to keep their "jobs".

    But never mind the PERSONAL "sins" - think about the BILLIONS of dollars going into collecting DATA about the human condition that does NOTHING, nothing, to advance medical research! That's what is REALLY crazy about the megascam middle man known as "health insurance" - the COST of collecting useless SCIENTIFIC information about "health"!

    So WHO, or even WHAT "idea" is watching out for me?

    At the present time, no one and no "law". Nothing, zip, nada. I have NO RIGHTS. Just a stinkin' punching bag....

    As an individual, I am vulnerable, by FORCE AND FRAUD sanctioned by "LAW", to every sociopath and psychopath breathing in air today - GLOBALLY, no less. As noted, ALL our information is available to everyone and their wicked "uncle", and NOTHING is known about HOW the 12 trillion loss HAPPENED.

    Do you get it? I'll keep trying until the point is made exactly WHAT is dysfunctional. The individual is nothing but an easy "mark" - from the IRS on down to municiple "services" and from "private institutions like hedge funds to "credit" providers and our fellow citizens are ethically unfit to "do the right thing". They even CAN'T if they want to keep a "job".

    I'd say we ARE in hell already, no?

    The idea that people will do what is right given the opportunity is not consistent with reality. Normally, people will do what is in their own best interests. It is necessary to have government programs that have the means to enforce the equitable distribution of goods and services. Otherwise, the economy becomes top heavy and will collapse. It is necessary to have an efficient economic system in order to have a quality society. Hell on earth is no fun for anyone.
    No amount of "happy pills" or "religious zeal" is going to overcome the need for human necessities.

    D.C.Eddy, "Self-centered sociopaths rule the world."

    From the time the protections were put in place to prevent another economic "depression" until Reagan took office, how many banking crises were there?

    Zero, zilch, nada.

    Could be the lead in THAT generation's cooking pots that turned theft into the sport of kings?

    Personally, I started tracking mass-induced insanity back in the 1980's when the drug "ex" was introduced into a church in Dallas TX and the "evangelical" movement began.

    No wonder why 7 ex-CIA chiefs don't want an investigation, huh?

    Here's the mission, as I see it. Until there is never again the possibility that someone will quote from the bible at United Health Care center's billing section when I asked to be FORGIVEN for a "short" twenty one cent error on a check I sent in to cover the cost of 2 months of COBRA, I won't be "happy" with Reagonomics, part 3, the final chapter where we stole it all.

    Thank the lord that the smartest ones of you bloggers have conceded that you LOST the "moral" argument.

    Now, as for The Urantia Book's "Supreme Being", whatever your channeling his voice in my head mkultra madames have been feeding you secret shamans of better governing through mass-induced psychosis int eh "churches", the depth to which THAT truth was wrongly "interpreted, well, let's just say that after we round you all up and send you to the "institution" you all truly belong in (with no internet access, btw), we'll send in a "teacher" to help you discover that $$$ is not "god".

    NEVER will I kiss the a-- of drug pushers. Never. I feel positively Klingon-like JOY about the ongoing battle to send the whole stinking cabal to where they belong...judging from who tries to hack in my laptop, it's clear where you all are meeting these days around the world...interesting...

    Here's your post from September 21st, NLF:

    Bill Fletcher,

    Arizona is a "Work at-will" and a "Right to work" state. How did this come about, and I don't need an explanation - I am living this!!. I come from a third-world country and think that I am coming to a more civilized county. Just imagine!!.

    Now after 26 years and working for a hospital for 7 years and being in nursing for 13 years, I am fired for, Just because!!.

    What rights have the worker. I take care of these rich old people and now I am fighting my own case with no help from any Civil Rights organisation. What good is just calling this country the "Land of Freedom".

    Where is my justice?.

    Posted by: Nlf

    So the question is - who are YOU?

    Thanks for proving my point about Homeland Insecurity making it easier for psychos to get at the normals.


    Why is this country the only country in the civilized world that is on one hand calling itself a "Democracy" and on the other it is "Capitalism".
    How is this being refered to by those who make law in this so called" The land of the Free and Home of the Brave". Isn't this a joke?. And what are the Politariate doing about it. They get blamed by the senators and congressmen that "The people asked for it" Who will step up and question them?.

    Anna D,

    The first thing is I am retired and am not a nurse.

    I am not talking about my vocation. I am talking about justice. Because if you, or your family or great friend gets admitted in hospital, you might be the one to experience the abuse. Kyle means nothing, hopefully he will die soon. What about John Mccain, or Harry Mitchel - you didn't mention them.

    funny, you didn't get the simple comparison I was referring to: You seem very demanding and without empathy. Just who are you?.

    Maybe you should come out and accuse the so-called government of being "Dictators", since it is presummed that other leaders are all Psychos.

    Due to lead in the cooking pots; it is no longer possible for people to comprehend reality realistically...
    The meanings of words are a blur of conflicting concepts.
    The laws of physics are now a suggested possibility.
    The age of uncertainty has evolved into the age of confusion. We do what is bad in the hopes that good will come of it and we do what is bad with no concern for what is right.
    We are selling our soul to the devil for a bowl hot chili. Everything people have fought and died for is being given away. Instead of leaving our children a better world; we are leaving them poverty and unkindness.
    Self-centered sociopaths rule the world.
    We pray for peace and pay for war.
    Our golden idols have turned to rust and we can no longer understand the difference.
    Labor pains gave birth to a corrupt society based on hate and disconnect. Liberty was intended to free people from slavery but instead it has undermined our sense of human worth and our cooperative spirit.
    We need to understand what we know and know what is real and necessary.

    Paul Shuski & Uncle Harry: The pendulum violates physics in the USA: It swings from the near middle to the far right (kisses fascism and reverses), never taking its natural path to the left.

    But actually "right and left" are a mere analogy based on the revolutionary assembly seating after the French Revolution (distance from monarchy). So the idea of "left and right" is wholly artificial, a diversion. That is why you hear so many people say they are a liberal on social issues (female equality, racial egalitarian, government assistance for a safety net) and a conservative on the economy(corporate advocate with a strong belief in competition). There are many possible combinations. Maybe that is why so many voters register independent.
    No contradiction is involved in weighing particular questions and making discrete choices.

    Liberal and conservative simply mean the individual who is content having Rachel Maddow or Glenn Beck do their thinking. But thinking is all it seems to be, gfor the Establishment has become unresponsive to popular opinion on vital issues. (occupational war, bailout recipients and disclosure, medical system, unemployment)

    So liberal and conservative are false delusional categories. We have a permanent oligarchical governance based upon elite economic and social advantage, with the "elected" officials and bureaucracy acting out a fiction. Democracy was hollowed out a long time ago. That's why we have almost no real unions: not on the menu. (Uncle Harry is a dope.)

    In 1968, after 2 political assassinations, Uncle Harry told me, "Politics is like a pendulum. I've seen it swing to the left. If you live long enough, you'll see it swing over to the right again."

    I'm one of last of the dinosaurs now: union autoworker. Our union bosses were strong leaders when I started. Last Oct. I asked my co-workers who they thought R. Gettlefinger would vote for and some of them thought he had already retired.

    When I hired in, if my union rep wanted weekend overtime pay, he put on his work boots to take a job on the plant floor. Now their pay automatically reflects that of the worker who puts in the most hours. This looks remarkably like a pay off to me and would never have flown under Reuther or Frazier.

    When PATCO was broken by Reagan, the UAW said nothing.

    When I talk to school aged kids about the advantages I've had because of my union job, some think I'm lying. Some think the union movement is passe. It's sad. My values have always been to leave as much or more opportunity for the next generation than I have been lucky to share.

    I blame myself. I watched it happen and didn't get involved. What happened to the UAW? We got too lazy to buck our own corruption and raise a voice when our fellow union members were getting treated like doormats. We didn't question why the lobbyists were having the tax laws changed to give an advantage to foreign owners of American factories or when American company's headquarters were moved into off shore mail boxes. We yawned as wage arbitrage moved manufacturing into countries where $12/day is a good living.

    It might have been quite a bit different had there been the same type union leaders and activists as when Uncle Harry witnessed that pendulum all the way on the left.

    Labor unions are a joke. I'm a former member of IBEW. This union literally took our union dues and never really represented us in a proper manner. I lost my job due to harassment in the workplace. The union never lifted a finger to investigate, nor did they ever file a grievance. They accepted the company's decision without any kind of a fight. A subsequent complaint to the NLRB fell on deaf ears. As one former co-worker called it, "taxationa without representation".

    D.C.Eddy wrote, in part, "What we are fighting for is survival not poverty and death."


    RIDICULOUS odds - 12 trillion LOSS, collectively speaking, math formulas programmed into computers that miscalculate "risk", detach "labor" costs from any profit returns, and not even a "trickle" calculation for MAINTENANCE...

    Shoot, I used to JOKE that we were being pushed back to swinging through the trees...

    Hard to keep a 2000 year perspective on "euro" civilization - but the best civilization and culture was built by agriculturists.

    The "oil kingdom" can safely be judged as a vicious "slave" tyranny. Poverty, misery, stupidity through "education", brutality towards women...ALL IN THE NAME OF RELIGION, no less!

    Seriously, were they NOT expecting a "fight"...guess they were, hence the tea bag goonism...

    Thanks, media moguls!

    Anna D,

    I don't understand you. I am talking about justice. But you want me to turn tail and run. Is that what Americans believe in. If that is the case, we should get our butts out of Iraq and Afganistan, because they are terrorists and suciede bombers, why send our people there to be murdered. Right?.

    Posted by: Nlf

    Boy, what doodoo did I step in by talking to you as if you were indeed interested in your vocation as a nurse!

    So getting fired gave you the IDEA that going into politics will bring YOU "justice" as a working "nurse" - good luck with that IDEA...

    This is the truth, as recently expressed in retort to the "cut and run" argument you are grafting on to your personal situation,

    "USA does not make decisions based on the delusions of "leaders" in other countries."

    Meaning, "we" don't care what they will think.

    Check your history books for confirmation - USA is CONSISTENT about not caring how psychos in other countries "think"...lord knows we have enough psychos in our own country to not listen to....

    Anna D,

    I don't understand you. I am talking about justice. But you want me to turn tail and run. Is that what Americans believe in. If that is the case, we should get our butts out of Iraq and Afganistan, because they are terrorists and suciede bombers, why send our people there to be murdered. Right?.

    The unions helped the government and big corporations sell all the jobs overseas which in turn sold out AMERICA.It started in the late 70s with steel in the OHIO valley.Deregulation has also not only killed jobs but services and still the price tag goes higher.And finally the air traffic controllers(RON REAGAN).The union did nothing but take money to let it happen.Now the union protects the worker that does not show on time wrecks equipment calls off because their hair is not right and they condem the good worker whom is on time and gives 100%.Only the buttkissers and union buddies get anywhere.I bet our armed services people are having a hard time finding work and providing for their families after serving.Also the government and unions did thee old divide and conquer where as in the air traffic controllers case the pilots,ground crew,flight crew etc, etc, should have stood together united instead of everybody watching their own butt.Because they did not it has caused a huge domino effect which cost us all.And the unions did nothing period!!!!!!

    1. Didn't we notice the last 8 or 9 years? Yes, but there seemed to be no reaction by Democrats, or any other institutionalized groups including unions, against the proto-fascism of corporations first and government as a handmaiden to wage slavery.
    2.The Obedient gang has had 8 months and is doing very little different. Why is that? They are involved in the same merry go round between regulators and regulated, and are dependent on corporate power for media costs of re-election. What we have is not government but a "reality show" about pretending to govern: Big Survivor Brother: Washington, D.C.
    3.If you can't tell the difference between real governing and #2 (and it is #2, stinking) then you probably think the SEIU is a union. What it actually is, is a union substitute, like Splenda (Rumsfeld's Suga').
    4.If people who understand and care began acting more like the asto-turfed teabaggers what would happen? Would they be shunted into a fence outside of town? Would the jails and courts overflow? Wanna find out, then try G-20 in Pittsburgh this Friday. (There is a double standard for controlling redress: Corporate and fascist sponsored events are left unmolested, except for a handful of counter-demonstrators in their shadow, and the spontaneous or progressive type demonstrations are policed, diverted and harassed, with provocateurs added by government police and intelligence agencies.) Even if one is armed and threatening the President at a pro-corporate event no one reacts, because it is "safe" for big business by definition.
    5. Like the eunich Democratic Party, our industrial unions are name brand products of big business, and today caught in the money windmill of campaigns, just another "reality show" for the membership. Elections were all that was left and now they are rigged and fixed. (President Obedient is proof. Especially in the way Big Insurance comes before public health, and the way financial regulation is a farce at the edges of the economy. P.S. The "recession" is oficially over, so now you can "invest" again.)
    6.Illegal transactions, drug and arms trafficing, prostitution and porn and human sex slavery are now almost half the unofficial GDP volume. If not for officialized crime (drug importing, currency manipulation, elite wagering, & items above) this economy would have already collapsed into chaos. If human need and whim comprise 66% (formerly 74%) of the official economy (with defense-war-arms sales as the next highest item) then that is our last lever. I do not care whether teabaggers are part of it but we must boycott and target our spending, while demanding the right to form real working popular unions to advocate for employee ownership and self-management. (80% of us are still working and getting paychecks, and we can dictate terms if we only will. The government is dead to us (vitiated by corruption), after all, except for social control, state terrorism, social security and medicare.) Then let's hope we can trust ourselves.

    The time has come to acknowledge historical facts without trying to go back, to a golden time that never was. (There is no time machine, just media fantasy.) But if you think you have anything left (no personal property without the state?) you will have to put up your chips and take a chance. On "The Wire", that's why they let Snotboogie, and Snotboogie Inc. play, because that was the Old America. New rules: Snotboogie Inc. out of the game!

    Historical amnesia, can't fight for new gains when one is not cognizant of past victories. Early battle of unions to legalize, use of violence force by state against workers, creation of laws circumventing role of unions to economism-deal with wages of of own workers in own plant rather than ONE BIG UNION. Fall of Soviet Union, discrediting socialism presented by chattering class as good in theory, fails in practice. Ruling class hegemony, capitalist press, capitalist state, versus disorganized workers. Difficulties identifying class interests "class is under erasure" unless it is used in an obsfucating manner through creation of non class categories such as "middle class" Intellectual labour of ruling class expended discrediting socialism, Marx etc in institutions of higher learning. Just a few things the working class has going against it. Never in history with the exception of October 1917 has a class conquered political power without first attaining economic power. The democratic revolutions of England and France were partial victories that gave the franchise to the propertied classes-universalism followed slowly behind, definition of democracy must be expanded to include equality of condition.

    The issue really is spiritual. Human beings are born into this life, this time and place, this evolutionary process, and regardless of what religious beliefs one adopts, what dogma one spouts: no one knows what came before or after his/her existence. So we make choices based on the limits of our consciousness and our experience. Some people's consciousness is based on the illusion that they are the center of the universe, that their own aggrandizement is the only thing that matters, and other people's consciousness is based on the realization that we are all interdependent, and that the well-being of each one of us is dependent on the well-being of all. So the self-aggrandizers abuse and exploit those who would never dream of doing likewise,either because of ignorance, apathy, or spiritual wisdom, and the world, with its potential of becoming heaven, becomes hell.

    "We simply want our country back from the restrictive noose offered by the Left."
    Ric Windmiller

    Where have you been the last eight years?
    It is the so called conservative right that has been undermining our rights and privileges under the guise of protecting us from terrorists. They used fear tactics to get us into a "no win" conflict and spent us into trillions of dollars of debt with no end in sight.
    Liberty is a myth when people are out of work and up to their arm pits in alligators.
    What we are fighting for is survival not poverty and death.
    Liberty in a capitalist system is always a product of Equity and Justice.

    Nlf wrote, in part, "Arizona is a "Work at-will" and a "Right to work" state. How did this come about, and I don't need an explanation - I am living this!!."

    Look at the story about what it took to clean up Tombstone - quite the bloodbath the Earp brothers had to have. Arizona is a very scary state. Normal kids can't wait to graduate high school and leave. Take a good long look at Kyl - Hollowood "bad guy" actors study Kyl's behavior to get it right.

    Sorry to hear about what happened to you. Whatever you do, don't let them generate MORE paperwork about you. Leave. Nurses are needed everywhere.

    Bill Fletcher,

    Arizona is a "Work at-will" and a "Right to work" state. How did this come about, and I don't need an explanation - I am living this!!. I come from a third-world country and think that I am coming to a more civilized county. Just imagine!!.

    Now after 26 years and working for a hospital for 7 years and being in nursing for 13 years, I am fired for, Just because!!.

    What rights have the worker. I take care of these rich old people and now I am fighting my own case with no help from any Civil Rights organisation. What good is just calling this country the "Land of Freedom".

    Where is my justice?.

    Two points:

    (1) It will be very very difficult for organized labor to replace business unionism (representing workers in their workplace) with social unionism until it has more tools at its disposal. Many of its most powerful tools -- the general strike, solidarity strikes, political strikes -- were stripped from labor by the Taft-Hartley Act. Restore those tools, and we'll see what could happen.

    (2) Labor alone can't be the larger movement you're talking about here. Look back at the Triangle Shirt-waist Factory Fire -- you didn't just have the seamstresses themselves on strike, but also middle class ladies using their stock certificates to get bail out jailed strikers. Look at the Wagner Act: labor itself was barely a presence in that fight, but Sen. Wagner pushed for it precisely because he had an ideological investment in organizing workers. In other words, a larger movement must be *larger than organized labor institutions themselves.* And we're getting there. Since the 1990s, there's been a rise in non-union worker support, organizing, and policy advocacy in the nonprofit sector. Check out Janice Fine's research on worker centers. Check out groups like National Employment Law Project, Public Justice Center in Baltimore, Workers Defense Project in Austin. This is the kind of movement that the guests discussed, and we need more of this... institutions that supplement and complement organized labor.

    The labor movement should not be asking for just healthcare; it should be asking for PREVENTION!

    Please use CER healthcare funds to prove to the CBO that monies spent on Primary Prevention reduce overall healthcare costs. According to the Lewin Group we could save up to one trillion dollars per year if we could reduce preventable disease. No system of healthcare can be deficit neutral at 15 to 20 years out if we maintain the same disease rate. To change the disease rate we must focus on prevention not disease management. I would love to discuss this policy shift with any of your healthcare team. The Public Option can promote Prevention and reduce disease burden on our society.

    This message creates a common goal. One that all the politicians are ignoring.

    If the resurgence of labor requires a social movement for economic justice, as suggested by Fletcher and Zweig, can such a movement be based on the rhetoric of class warfare? The problem is that that frame is easily manipulated into a fight between the white working class that Palin appeals to and workers of color who are increasingly fueling the labor movement.

    The real difficulty that labor faces, and that the discussion totally ignored, is the fact that the dominant class identification in the country today is not working class but middle class. The line between white and blue color workers is hard to discern in today's economy. The majority of workers have achieved or aspire to the same middle class lifestyle. In fact, much of the fuel for the current financial crisis was based on the lust for home ownership. And many of those hit hard by the recession have been white color workers earning well above poverty level.

    If "working people" constitute a majority of the country, as Zweig and Fletcher argue, they nonethelss identify as middle class. Why else does Obama position virtually every policy initiative in terms of its impact on the middle class? It isn't just labor leadership that has been coopted by wanting to be part of the system, but the vast majority of people who want what a middle class lifestyle seems to offer.

    A new social movement for economic justice, therefore, is going to have to be based on a new paradigm that helps people across a range of incomes and communities come together around a set of common values and interests. Such a paradigm is going to have to redefine what middle class means in terms of today's realities, which include a more diverse society, environmental limits to growth, and a knowledge-based economy.

    My sense is to forget class. We're all in this together against the elites that don't seem to get what kind of change is required (and that unfortunately includes both Democrats and Republicans). Maybe the way to start is with something obvious: "it's the unemployment, stupid."

    I really liked the Union telecast this past Friday.

    For that matter I listen to and like most of your stuff. It just happens that I am a retired Union construction worker (35 years) and I can relate so closely to everything that your guests said. And now I can relate to the comments.

    Bill I would like to appear on your show. I did not write any books. I have nothing to sell. But I can tell you things about the internal workings of Unions that may appall and suprise even you.

    I dont know if the television world is ready for a rank and file commentary, but if they are, and you are for that matter, then I am offering myself up for such a task

    Before we consider anything regarding social justice and the morality of the distribution of company profits-Is it not an amazing credit to the right wing (social consevatives) press that Obama, not Wall Street; and the Unions, not the demand for those who live off others'labor for their money, that is being blamed for the debt and unresonable degree?

    Just because it is legal does not mean it is moral;the equation of legality and morality is the foundation principle for the totalitarian state whether it is called democracy, fascism or communism. The very purpose of education in a democratic society is that if we understood these moral principles-Our social contract with America:The Constitution, we would need less and less legality and we would approach the government that governs least governs best. But Alexander Hamilton not Thomas Jefferson got his way, and where human nature is dominated by the legality of greed, and every vice is turned to virtue, and the sale of human labor is a legal commodity as is living off the labor of others, while we sit at our computers playing at the Wall Street Casino the government that governs least leads to books by FBI agents such as, The Best Way to Rob a Bank Is to Own One.

    Labor movements and organizations are our number one defence against this olgarchic motion, which is another way "social" conservatives justify their judged deserved ostentatious Epicureanism, by turning the vice of enslaved populations, both foreign and domestic, producing goods at unreasonable low rates into profit, thusly equated to a virtue. With the decrease in the American Dollar and the governement option health care,plus a few well placed tariffs, American manufacturing sectors could gain a well-deserved voice in the power of the purse, necessary for the stagility of the middle class.

    The moral issue is making gains in the moral debate concerning company profits-Do they go to the guy in West Palm Beach layng about the House on the Ocean or the people actually slugging it out in the trenches who he is living off of?

    Labor movements and organizations are our number one defence against olgarchy, which is another way "social" conservatives justify their judged deserved ostentatious Epicureanism, by turning the vice of enslaved foreign populations producing goods at unreasonable low rates into profit, thusly equated to a virtue. With the decrease in the American Dollar and the governement option health care,plus a few well placed tariffs, American manufacturing sectors could gain a well-deserved voice in the power of the purse, necessary for the stagility of the middle class.

    The moral issue is making gains in the moral debate concerning company profits-Do they go to the guy in West Palm Beach layng about the House on the Ocean or the people actually slugging it out in the trenches who he is living off of?

    Ric Windmiller,
    Your "Just Plain Americans" are not smart enough to understand that they are being used by the Radical Republicans who have caused this country to be on the brink of chaos, death and destruction far beyond what the so called terrorists could accomplish. The Radical Republicans are responsible for crimes against humanity as well as massive indebtedness. Their lies and treachery is as obvious as the nose on your face. After all the damage they have done, now they are undermining any attempt to survive their eight years of blunders and greed. They have striped the treasury and trapped us in an economic black hole.
    The present administration has bent over forward to accommodate the Radical Republicans to no avail. If the Democrats do not grow a back bone real soon, we will self- destruct. It will not be a pleasant sight and our enemies will laugh themselves silly.

    Union & Corporate leaders sold out for today's gains, but today has done gone & went.

    Now the chickens has done come home to roost & leave a mess everywhere they go.

    EPA says to clean up the mess or else, so messy jobs are sent elsewhere & govt. oversight organizations were more interested in sticking heads in the sand so they would not see the mess that was coming & wanted someone else to clean up, but leave them in position.

    Wall Street has returned to the much needed risky businesses so they can make unconciousable profits & the govt. runs & sticks heads in the sand--so they will not see the next mess--which will be even messier--but if they hold out till next election then Asleep-at-the-wheel voters will once again return them to their sand hills.

    Billy Bob, Florida

    What I do not understand is how so many citizens have no knowledge of history. The history of labor in this country is rich, and has always been subject to interpretation more than a little slanted toward the right end of the spectrum.
    Thank God and other deities, for Tanenhaus and Zweig and Moyers for relaying the truth. Unfortunately, the audience is deaf to facts. True journalism requires checking all sources. Zweig’s grasp of the history of the labor movement is entirely correct.
    I was raised to hate Dave Beck. I now am seriously considering volunteering to organize Wal-Mart! I once won an essay contest from the John Birch Society. Now, I cannot even stay on their Web site for more than 05 seconds. (Talk about deceit, they now call themselves the JBS. They’ve Kentucky Fried Chicken’d themselves! KFC for those who have to be patted on the head and explained to here).
    I am sitting here at home on Saturday, a woman who has a high-paying job, thanking the labor movement for my right to be home on a weekend as well as my job. I am not a member of a union, but I have seen the light at the end of the tunnel. I hope that it is not the headlight on a temperance train heading toward me.
    What a tragedy, to lose an entire nation, founded by people with a wonderful plan for a country that welcomed “. . . all the world’s tired and poor and huddled masses yearning to breathe free . . .” only to become the world’s poorest, for lack of a workplace to get tired in, wretched and unable to breathe at all, thanks to pollution, and unable to be healed, due to the lack of a national healthcare system

    According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA) Official Energy Statistics from the U.S. Government (, "Motor Gasoline Consumption, Price, and Expenditure" (, the total 2007 United States' gasoline consumption was: 3,389,300,000 bbls. At 42 gallons per barrel and $2.75 per gallon I'm getting Americans spent at least $391,464,150,000 in that year. Not bad income. I'm sure there are many Americans, certainly those seasoned with the big thoughts of lottery winnings, who could blow through this in a sneeze. Hey, I'm sure there are many more who would be satisfied with 1/10,000,000 of this per year ($40,000 for the quick to calculate)!

    But wait! 'Cause for what I'm hearing and seeing, if you wait long enough, like all those who saw a windfall in the housing market, a ten-millionth will get you zero! That's right. The move is on to take gasoline out of our atmosphere!

    Then consider, "Total credit card debt in the United States has reached about $665 billion on bank credit cards and about $105 billion on store or gas credit cards. According to the Fed's G19 release, the total is roughly $800 billion." (Jan 2006) (Sources: and the Federal Reserve) (

    Petroleum, this extraordinary manmade material, has been catalytic in lubricating Mr. Usa "big" Spenda's move around town by plasticizing his money-mouth. With nothing to sell (and no money-money to buy), surely many hundreds of thousands whose livelihoods depend on petroleum, will be free to worry about their credit card debts more than they ever imagined. Big, big numbers no matter how you divide it. [NOTE: of course this is one factor in the opposition to going green.]

    Regardless of its economic and social impact, gasoline is definitely headed back to the stone ages as the solution to a world created on mobility. Mobility, however, will be upheld - at any cost. Unless American ingenuity (that genius inherent in being an American), can stop the CO2 from coming out the vehicles' waste pipe, I wouldn't hold my breath if I were you. Nobody's beat this dumber in over billions of man-hour-dollar-years. Putting the waste pipe in front won't work either. So, it will be final. A centi-billion dollar industry will be history. This will not be without smashing up our economy.

    Given this simple facet of attitude and performance I make my point. If you thought Americans got away with buying themselves out of their own jobs by buying off shore and thus indirectly shattering the labor movement which gave the largest number of earth-men the highest standard of living ever, wait 'til you see what they'll do on this one.

    I listened to your discussion with Zweig and Fletcher--organized labor, "social justice," and the "irrational" Right. In the atmosphere of your discussion, you would probably label me a member of the Irrational Right. In fact, I am simply a concerned American--well educated in the fields of cultural anthropology, sociology and linguistics, a small businessman, science consultant. I found it very interesting that for all their pleading that workers want the brand of social justice offered by Big Labor and the dire need for "reforms" thwarted by the Irrational Right, there was no mention of the vastness of corruption found in Big Labor and their community organization partners both historically and at present. There were no statistics to back up any of their claims that "Capital" is suppressing the worker except for a few isolated examples--and that what we are seeing today is a continuing class struggle. There was only the vague mention of some history of militantcy in the labor movement today and that past resistence to Marxist philosophy in the United States was labelled as "witch hunts." Please, gentlemen. Don't insult my intelligence. The plain truth is that the "social justice" espoused by the Left cannot survive without Americans giving up many of the constitutionally guaranteed freedoms that we enjoy. The people you see at the TEA parties all across the country--those people are just plain Americans, not the puppets of Big Capital. The Radical Left is obviously afraid of just plain Americans. Why else would they attempt to smear our efforts to put our country back on the track of a constitutional government. Instead, we are labeled, "Right Wing Extremists." We simply want our country back from the restrictive noose offered by the Left. We like our country of opportunity. We don't want the central government to make decisions for us. We don't want the government to provide us with our needs, because that kills individuality and incentive. "Social Justice," straight and simple leads to depressed production and robs us of our will to grow and to be all that we can be as individuals in deference to the collective "good." Don't offer me a watered down Marxist deal. Give me liberty or give me death.

    The problem with the right is that they see workers as born losers. They also have fundamental driving ideas that by promoting poverty there will be more fodder for the military and more availability of prostitutes when in truth they are undermining the quality of their own life.
    We all live in a yellow submarine and are affected by our social milieu.

    I believe the most destructive myth in America is that somehow free market corporate capitalism promotes individual freedom. That's nonsense. Furthermore, is it even worth saving? I would argue “no”.

    Is more efficient? Take a look at vacant strip malls that are everywhere.

    Does it promote the general welfare? We have food companies trying to sell more sugar and fat, and drug companies trying to sell weight loss products. The apparent absurdity of it all is covered over with the blanket of the "free market".

    Does it reflect what we generally agree is the best in human nature: loyalty, commitment, and honesty? The ubiquity of off shoring of jobs and corporate welfare suggest otherwise.

    The small market capitalism of the Jeffersonian era or even the highly regulated corporate capitalism of a generation ago looks preferable to me.

    The more general problem as I see it, is that conservatives have an impossible task in defending the economic status quo. You simply cannot rationalize the coexistence of low wages with individual freedom, increased self-reliance, and less government.

    The problem with the left is that they believe social/economic policy can create happiness, that government controlled environments create the best person. It doesn't work that way. If your fundemental driving idea is a lie, everything that follows is an error. You will always be disappointed.

    I was there when the Ford Motor Company Goon Squads beat up striking workers with clubs. It was the Ford Rouge Plant and I was a student at the Henry Ford Trade School. I was fifteen years old and worked a full shift as well as went to school. The Trade School was the equivalent of a High School Diploma and two years of College. We were expected to be managers in the Ford manufacturing system.
    The company was concerned about our safety and we had a police escort out of the Ford Rouge Plant. I remember passing through the picket lines with all of the pushing, shouting and shoving. None of us students were injured.
    This was my first experience with unions.
    After I graduated from Henry Ford Trade School; I enlisted in the Army. When I returned from the service, I went to work for the Ford Motor Company. I expected they would hire me as a manager but instead they put me on the production line. Eventually they honored my Trade School diploma and moved me up to a Tool and Die Maker. From there I moved to the Engine Development Division as a technician.
    I was a union member as a Tool and Die Maker and was an active member of the union. It soon became obvious to me that the union was more interested in appeasing the company than protecting their workers. There were also concerns about the connection between the Mafia and the union.
    The women's rights advocates were placing women on jobs in which they were unqualified.
    The same thing happened with the civil rights movement. The quality of worksmanship went down and much of the work was outsourced. Layoffs became a constant threat.
    Stagnant wages and inflated prices has undermined the quality of people's lives as well as destroyed our economy. The demand side of economics can no longer support the supply side of economics.
    I was an active member of the Technocrats who had worked out a system of dynamic economics and social equity and justice that would solve our present grievous situation.
    Our present problem is systemic and requires changes in our system that are essential to our survival.
    We have come a long way to improve minority and women's rights. Now we need to provide the necessary funds to support the supply side of economics and quality life styles for our working people.
    Will we rise to the occasion or will we let false concepts and lies defeat us in every way?

    "Every generation has underestimated the potential for finding new ideas...Possibilities do not add up. They multiply."
    Paul M. Romer

    The gods of irony still rule the firmament because no matter Communism is dead as an ideology, in the end, it still must be, "Workers of the World, 'Unite'".

    The discussion on unions was interesting but omitted a major issue--the unions' abandonment of opposition to illegal immigration and excessive legal immigration which have devastated the lower middle class and laborers here, removing whole areas of employment, undercutting wages and working standards for the profit of employers. As long as unions won't stand up for citizens and go along with corporate demands for open borders, they will fail to be of any use to this country.

    It's a simple answer really labor incentives for the corporations to go overseas...

    American workers will always loose this battle.

    Corporations went global, unions stayed local. Greed. They should have been raising wages overseas, so that ultra low overseas wages would not undercut their own, and to help their brothers, I though unions were about sticking together in brotherhood. Instead they kept all the money out of greed.

    Your comments about corruption and incompetence in unions could equally apply to almost any business, corporation, government, NGO's, or even religious organizations. There are literally tens of thousands of examples of incompetence and corruption in most forms of organization. For example Pfizer, just agreed to pay over $2 billion in fines for their 4th instance of fraud in just the last decade.

    Your comments about corruption and incompetence in unions could equally apply to almost any business, corporation, government, NGO's, or even religious organizations. There are literally tens of thousands of examples of incompetence and corruption in most forms of organization. For example Pfizer, just agreed to pay over $2 billion in fines for their 4th instance of fraud in just the last decade.

    An interesting program and these two labor advocates have the right idea, but it takes more than just talk to "get justice". Labor needs to GET SMART and battle the capitalists and oligarchs with the only things they understand: money and control.

    Here is how labor can do it. After all even if union labor is only 12% of the workforce now they still have enough money and power to "get justice" if they work together and work smart. Here is a way: 1) Get all labor unions together under 1-leadership coucil-just like a corporate board of directors. 2)Step 1-use union funds to first buy a brokerage/hedge fund/trading operation-get talent that is skilled in playing the capitalist game and own it. 3)Use the trading operation to gradually gain/buy control of one public corporation at a time (51% is all that is necessary-to have absolute voting and operational control). 4)Use combined union pension funds to make the investments and gain ownership/control of public corporations one at a time. 5)Once control is obtained-then labor principles can be implemented. For example, unions might impose wage fairness by limiting management pay to something like 100x the average worker pay, or other social fairness goals. 6) A smart starting point might be to gain operational control of a major bank or large regional bank, since finace has such a hugh impact on the economy now and they still are relatively cheap at this point in time.

    In short, labor has to become a lot smarter at playing the capitalist game, and then using it to promote their interests. Money, control, and power will work and the unions have enough of it (even at 12%of the population) to effectively beat the oligarchs and capitalists at their own game. It just will take time and smart collective action to do it. It does little good to rant and rave about about social justice, inequality, greedy capitalists, etc. Instead, use your collective strengths and resources to beat them at their own game.

    Correction: I meant Andy Stern, not Andy Stein.

    Normally, I love your show, but these two commentators about the labor movement are so far off it is embarrassing. I am a computer programmer in my mid-fifties, and have had many run-ins with the labor unions in my career and the reason why I don't believe the labor unions will get very far is because - to put it bluntly - they are a bunch of crooks. They have been my whole life and - except for a minority like Andy Stein - they haven't changed.

    Let me explain. It's not just the Jimmy Hoffas that corrupted the unions - they have betrayed the idea of an honest day's work for an honest day's pay. I worked in a nuclear power plant back in the 70's. We were going up in power after a shutdown and sitting at 50% power waiting for me, a mere technician, to calibrate the detectors - NRC regulations. The voltmeter was sitting right in front of me for 6 hours. But I was not an Instrumentation and Control spec - a union job. I may have a B.Sc. in Physics, but I am not qualified to measure a simple voltage. A union man was needed to do this. How many hundreds of thousands of dollars did Florida Power and light pay out to run 600 megawatts of oil plants because the union guy could not be bothered to show up, even though the plant reached 50% power at 11 PM? Where did the union rules protect the company from running effectively and protect me in getting my job done?

    As a speech recognition programmer, I could not move into a new office at AT&T in the 90's because an IBEW man had to adjust the bookshelves in my office to hold my reference manuals and textbooks. These were book shelves just like in my home - take out a bracket, move it up to where the manuals fit. I spent a morning chasing down someone to do it, before I finally risked a union grevience and did it myself.

    I simply cannot trust the unions; they are too corrupt, and the union rules are a major part of it. I would much prefer to trust the factory owner, because he will pay what my labor is worth without all of the dishonesty in the way.

    This is a significant matter for anyone in an skilled profession, be they a computer programmer or a machinist with a high school diploma. It is literally true that the best computer programmers are orders - orders - of magnitude more efficient than the worst. A Bill Joy or a Linus Torvalds can, in a few hours, punch out code that lasts for a generation or more when the worst of my colleagues can actually have negative efficiency. Their software is so bad and so buggy that it takes more than one person to fix the bad code that one single person wrote! But the union rules are blind to this.

    This is the reason why the unions cannot be trusted to represent the working people. A recent example was written up in the New Yorker Magazine about teacher's "rubber rooms" where the most incompetent teachers from the city are sent while their termination or disciplinary cases are being adjudicated. Randy Weingarten is standing up for these incompetents, and, even though she is condoning this contemptible situation, she is being promoted to head all of the teachers unions in the country. But what she has done is both an insult to the truly talented and gifted teachers in the system, it wastes literally hundreds of millions of dollar in taxpayer money, paying the saleries of people who do not belong teaching our children. It also stands in the way of the unions becoming a true, honest, advocate for a working educational system. I would never join a union like that voluntarily. A union that does not scrap a failed tenure system, a union that does not support a system that rewards teachers for results, betrays the teachers, the students, the taxpayers, the principals, the board of education, everyone but their own corrupt ends. They are corrupt not necessarily because they want to give teachers a salary for work they have not earned, but because they want to perpetuate a system that fails everybody in it, and only has the virtue of inertia.

    The problem with unions is not a class struggle - the failure of the communists was a blind system of inertia that failed them also - a bloated bureaucracy. Socialists who are tied to failed social institutions will also be doomed to failure in their own time bacuse they do not change. I like Andy Stein's efforts to shake up the labor movement, and I hope that he will succeed. Currently as an independent contractor, I am hoping that institutions like the Freelancer's Union will grow in strength and provide a needed voice for those of us who need a collective voice to be paid - as I said before - an honest day's pay for an honest day's work. Only then will all of us, worker, capitalist, employer, investor, will all win, instead of this charade of a zero-sum game.

    Can't believe that neither of your guests mentioned how the laws are so stacked against union organizing. Workers want unions, what they come to realize is that it may take years to get the process through the NLRB depending on the size and power of the prospective company. Wal Mart had one location in Canada vote for union representation. Rather than take a chance with the proccess, they closed the location. Other companies use similar tactics such as, threats to fire, plant closings, hire outside companys to harrass employees. Even when companies are found guilty by the NLRB of using these illegal tactics, they are seldom punished and when they are it's years down the road. With the deck stacked against you like this it's no wonder why workers are slow to organize. But one thing is sure, if working conditions and wages continue to decline, unions will regain strength and numbers. These are the conditions that gave birth to them in the first place.

    Asking about the decline of labor is like asking about the decline of voting. It can be because ppl have become the tools of corporate capitalism, or it just could be quite the opposite, that they do not see the value of any of our social institutions anymore. This certainly does not mean they are not militant, probably just the reverse. Most of the crushing being done these days is being done not by corporations alone, but by the govt, as well, through its financial and monetary policies, which sustain corruption. IMHO labor unions should concentrate not on welfare, but on sound money and employee ownership, and not expect the govt to do a lot about it either.

    Would social justice make us stronger? Yes. Have labor unions helped? Yes, they jump-started a lot of progress. What about now?
    Glad you asked. The jobs Fletcher and Zweig were talking about have gone waltzing overseas. The products union laborers make are beyond the means of nonunion laborers to afford. The 40-hour week, the weekend? Are you kidding me? Those jobs are gone to Indonesia. The economy is in fact set up so that it is very easy to fall between the cracks and be warehoused as unnecessary or work yourself to death, which is too bad, because it seems that the future belongs to the innovators, the lone wolfs who by definition fall between those cracks.
    And I do not see the "enemy" as "capital," which Zweig and Fletcher seemed to concur on. "Capital" is based on the mathematical realities of compounding interest, and the liquidity of financial markets, and it "wins" because of that reality, not because "workers" are not "organized."
    I don't see "capital" or "capitalists" as a class (as opposed to "working class"), though George W. Bush, in trying to get Social Security into the stock market, seemed to me to be trying to coopt everyone of retirement age into the "interest group" that rises and falls with the stock market. The "investor class" could be maximized quite easily like that.
    I have seen it suggested that capital (banks) should be regulated like utilities, providing not flowing water but flowing funds. Hmmm.
    Wouldn't it be counterproductive to try to split Americans into owners and workers exactly when the "work" that is needed is getting a major overhaul? (Don't waste time doing this; learn to do that.) Instead, redefine capital as a service.
    Or is that communism. (I have my limits in grasping all this.)

    When I was a lowly AFSCME worker in Baltimore I experienced a dignity and assurance I never experienced in any supervisory or teaching position I subsequently held.
    Union siblings lift one another up and know the truth about who does the necessary and indispensable work. Unions teach and nurture: Bargaining and striking in self-defense. What injustices did you conspire with your boss when you last requested a raise, non-union worker? How does that two-timing feel when you and your laboring cohorts lift together?

    I had the pleasure of working for the UAW-AFL-CIO in the mid sixties. They sent me to college, provided me with a job, and many other benefits. Thus, I am a bit prejudice, but it just seemed things worked out a bit better in those days. Thus, I became an officer in the Marine Corps rather than a private-if that is better.

    With the devaluation of the dollar, and with a public option, it is very likely the United States can become a manufacturing economy. Thus unions are a necessity.Plus, if management has unions running their jobs, other types of white collar supervision are not necessary. If somebody is notdoing their job, the union steward will handle it.

    What is missing form the dialogues about this is since Reagan it is a somewhat foregone conclusion that company profits are the property of the shareholders, and not the unions, yet the unions are being blamed for greed.

    What I find most amazing the ability of the Eastern establishment-East of the Hudson graduate schools in business to have avoided any moral or legal questions ragarding the downfall of Americas Wealth as they moved the fraternity and sorority parties to Manhattan, and now blame the Obama administration for the entire debt.

    And by the way, having dealt with both the government insurance plan and private insurance plans(I became totally disabled on a job), there is no comparison between the private and public plan. The government does a much better job.

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