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Poll: Are Extravagant Conventions Appropriate In Hard Times?

This week, the JOURNAL visited Denver’s suburbs ahead of next week’s lavish Democratic National Convention to look at how ordinary families are faring behind the election-year hoopla.

Resident Marsha Brown said:

“At first I thought the food bank program was for homeless people, but [I've] come to find out it's for regular people that fall on hard times.”

We invite you to discuss in the space below.


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I had fun with the DNC in Denver, got drunk and went driving with the Kennedy's, raided the local Golden Coral buffet with Michael Moore, Got Botox with Nancy Pelosi (still smiling), plaglarized some speeches with Joe Biden and sang "God Damn America" with Obama! Paid for by, some rich Hollywood actor, Thanks Democrats!

Is anyone else disturbed and apalled at the barenaked jingoism and negative nationalisn being exploited and used by the RNC. The God angle has been dated,discredited and desecrated by the Trent Lotts, Pat Dawsons and their ilk, so now they trot out pure Milosevic, Napoleon and 18th Century style jingoism. These people remind me of the Taliban.

Conventions seem to be merely PR to get the disenfranchised to vote one way or another. If the real issuses that affect our lives as Americans would be discussed, it might be wothwhile.

Bill blew off Katrina's comment about now not being the time to start shrinking the budget. If we intend to repair the decaying infrastructure of this country, which will start the revival of our economy through the creation of millions of local jobs, we will need to take on additional debt to finance these projects. The ill fated concept of public/private partnerships, publically funded for private profits, has been shown to be a complete and udder disaster everywhere it's been tried. This is one area where government's past reputation of successfully managing public infrastructure construction, repair, and maintenance projects has been reaffirmed.

I'm disappointed that '68 couldn't repeat itself. Forty years made us a different country without any right to protest or redress our grievances. All we have is cartoon documentaries (Chicago 10) and Democracy Now personnel roughed up and arrested to remind us. We are mice compared to what we were back then (brave sheep?). As I have been saying: This election is rigged and fake in so many ways that our only chance to stop the death camp train is to halt it at the Inauguration in January. I'm going for it, and if no one joins me I'm leaving the USA for good by Valentines Day. If they take my passport I'll flee illegally. I'm too old and little for the resistance and I don't want to stay and help the Nazis. If you can't understand what I'm saying try listening to Ward Churchill, who was confused, but right after all. The 9-11 conspiracy is the key to our puzzle.

Extravagant conventions are what they are. Millions of people donate to campaigns for the purpose of marketing the party and the candidates. Putting an end to marketing will not make poor americans richer.

Advocate in your communities for those who are doing well to donate to those who are struggling: give to the churches, shelters and food banks.

But what really will hope on the long term is to program policy at every level of government to be fair to all people. End predatory lending practices; make it easy for people to start up their own businesses; create jobs, jobs, jobs. Get to work on alternative energy projects. Get it?

To Allen Wrench:
Unless you're able to create some real solutions to all these problems and organize people to support them, I suggest you get off the pot.

Let's get real. Every 4 years the American people go to the polls and cast their ballots to determine which candidate will have the opportunity to betray the electorate...on EVERY level, in EVERY manner, at EVERY opportunity.

Instead of asking bogus questions like whether or not "extravagant conventions" are appropriate in tough times, we need to be asking what forms of mass movement will most effectively galvanize the population to press for redress of grievances and meaningful socio-economic and legal measures that will ensure our survival as a viable democratic society!

Sure Grady, we have options. But as of now, our 'options' are not exact replacments for crude. So adjustments have to be made and there will be some pain with the adjustments.

See my post on this subject.

I hope you are planning for some adjustments in your families life. While it is commendable you like to help out artists, paying their rent, tough times may be ahead and they may not be begins at home my friend.
As you wish. We can only plant seeds...we cannot force them to sprout.

Panic is for those not prepared.

By not including Nader and Green parties
in a debate, leaves this country in a despotic condition, unlike Western Europe
where issues like single-payer health care, wars driven by the military industrial
corporate complex, and the effects of big
corporations interests being represented
on our Congress instead of these folks

representing the people

Wrench: Considering our limited water supply and our caveman sewage treatment we pay our water bills to consume upstream feces. This is even more tragic when one considers the recycled methane flushed away as waste. It gives an amplified meaning to the word "waste." It is abundant, organic, sustainable, biodegradeable and virtually untapped. And you usually don't have to drill for it or haul it in seagoing tankers. No telling what wonderful nitrogen compounds could come from urine, but that is another story. Do astonauts really throw it out the window like cruise ships?

On peak oil: Imagine a jointed alloy bit as long as maximum airliner altitude is high grinding whip-fashion into the seabed below another mile of crushing water weight. How can that be anything other than an accident waiting to happen? And what turns that bit? Petroleum maybe? If we'd use a nuclear plant to turn it that'd be a waste when we could use that ultimate toxic to produce electricity instead. We haven't even used all Tesla's ideas yet. There's multiple forces and hidden power in our material realm, and that's disregarding the dis-material we've not uncovered yet. It's the petroleum and power generation interests holding back possibilities. Where is Promethus?

It's just like a political convention: The purpose is to retard, delay and contain power people already possess but are prohibited from unleashing. So "let one" for the Wrench!

Not vote?

Why accept eating a diet of shit?

Abstain from eating shit until something better is served up.

Our government has lost its focus of 'the government of the people, by the people and for the people' that Lincoln wrote about in his Gettysburg Address.

The politicians we have entrusted our lives and our country to have failed miserably with the job they have been given.

The politicians are corrupt, dishonest, greedy, power hungry, egomaniacs that will do anything to maintain power. The only conscience they serve is that of their special interest groups that shell out the dollars.

But lets be honest. When you go from this...

To this...

ANY person that lives a rock star life would be ruined as a politician that is supposed to serve the people first. I would too, so would you. After all we are only imperfect humans.

The Greek philosophers knew that when passion rules the mind, that the only job left for reason is that of the subservient task to find cleaver ways to satisfy the passions. They called it "putting passion before reason."

So, when our imperfect politicians succumb to too much greed and luxury they need to be brought back to earth and need a little help from the citizens they serve via a citizens oversight committee.

Our government has become so complex, that almost nothing substantive to help America can be done. The first step is to simplify the government and start returning to the ideal of 'the government of the people, by the people and for the people.

All we have to do is to look at who our leaders are as men to see the tickle down sickness that the public gets mentored with. When the presidents are too busy sticking cigars in women's private parts while on duty or become slap happy idiots that work overtime on finding new and creative ways to shoot off their cap guns at every imagined threat...what else do you expect?

And now we are putting all our hopes in someone that can't even be honest with how many houses he owns?

So if such a person can't be honest with such little things, how can they be trusted to be honest with very tough things to convey to the public?

Or the year in - year out delusional cries of making education and medical insurance affordable by the democrats. If a party is so delusional how can they be trusted to see truth and convey it to us? I'm afraid you politicians are dismissing this massive problem that faces humanity with something called wishful thinking.

My sister-in-law had to borrow from her retirement fund to pay $92,000 for her kid to go to college for just 3 years. Now she is broke and can't afford the 4th year. Do democrats really think they will be able to reduce a $125,000 college bill down to $10,000?

Last night on O'Reilly they had a blissninny democrat (I think) saying how he would outlaw nukes worldwide. When he was pressed how he would do it, he only said HE he is God.

What was the big topic about on the news about the slap happy dems many nights to give to the Clinton's to talk? Did they mention Peak Oil? Our looming food crisis? Or how we will run out of uranium in the dot so distant future? No, they just worked on masturbating their egos.

Listen up knuckleheads....ALL politicians are cut from the same cloth.

It make no difference if you vote for piece of shit A or piece of shit B - shit is shit and that is the bottom line.

The ONLY alternative America has in being force fed this diet of shit is abstain from eating shit any longer and to clean the remanning shit up.

On the radio it said one proposal for mandatory health insurance required the average family to pay $13,000 per year while getting a $5000 tax deduction. If I understand that correctly the $5000 would mean barley $2000 in actual tax rebates. so the net increase in cost of living to the family would be roughly $11,000.

How do they expect to force families to pay another $11,000 that they can't afford? Do they plan to attach liens to their hoses to foreclose?

If $13,000 per year can be reduced to maybe $1000 per year in out of pocket expenses they may have something.

But if the out of touch politicians understood anything about the working class they would realize that if a family does not have health insurance it is because they can't afford it.

...and some can't even afford to add the $1000 let alone the high cost the politicians have in mind.

If you can just get a few changes made in government you will be on your way to a government that serves its people, instead of people being slaves to the politicians.

When the politicians vote on a bill - it has to be a vote on one single proposal. Outlaw the bundling of all these special interest add-ons that corrupt bills into a putrid mess that no one can understand. In addition a citizens oversight committee must be formed and it must have teeth to act.

Our imperfect human leaders make mistakes and we citizens have little or no recourse to fix those mistakes and this must change if you want something different from the diet of shit you are being served. That is why revolutions come about for change. But we must be careful about what we are revolting against, as what we replace it with may be worse than what we have destroyed, so keep that in mind.

BTW, if and when America is ready for a revolt over the travesty of American political system, all you have to do is to follow the lead of our politicians and DO NOTHING.

America can be shut down by the citizens - just by doing nothing and go on strike.

When it comes down to it, we are dependent on strong government to keep the invading armies at bay. But everyday life is NOT dependent on the politicians flapping their jaws and blowing hot air out their ass.

What we are dependent on is each other and our cooperation at making life livable from the lowest shit shoveler and up the ladder to the highest doctor or airline pilot.

But coming back to reality this gives a glimpse of how engaged the citizens of the US of A we can see they are just sheeple and oblivious to their future.

Well, maybe next time around the country would be more energized. Of course this presupposes we have the gas and the planes will still be flying so we can get to the conventions to voice our disgust about this putrid mess we call the American political system.

I have not voted since I was in college back in the '70's. I could see back then what sort of diet they were serving up and decided to abstain until something better was offered. Well, the menu never changed, so my vote was always been an abstention vote.

Some voters say, if you don't vote you can't complain. Well, that is not true. There is no law on the books that says that. Neither does it say that American must vote to live in America. The bottom line is this - you can't complain unless you are willing to do something.

Voting just got us in the mess we are in, so voting does little to fix the problem and in reality it just perpetuates it.

But until RADICAL change has been FORCED on our politicians NOTHING WILL CHANGE.


We can't afford politics as usual any longer in our country. America is headed for collapse due to peak oil, peak natural gas, peak food and the rest. Citizens take back your country from the self serving politicians while you still have something left to call America...the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave.

Not Voting is violence. I get suspicious when white men tell me not to vote. Anarchy and totalitarianism are two sides of the same coin. Whys is the garrolous man from Canada telling me not vote and that my vote supports what I oppose? What in the world does her propose as an alternative.

Bryce MacKenzie: In 1788 the majority of the electorate was not stupid: It was excluded (by property and wealth requirements, race and gender)and in near revolt because of debt owed to the upper class.
When the Constitution was written and put in by a tiny minority of speculators and land owners they had very little in mind besides trading in (at face value) the government bonds they'd bought up at a nickle on the dollar (from hungry veterans and small merchants), instituting advantageous (for themselves) trade legislation, legitimizing their western land holdings, and holding office for cronyism. The few insightful ones, like Jemmy Madison, envisioned how industrial wage slaves would soon be the majority, if things went according to plan. (They did.)

What we now call education is crippling indoctrination for the most part: What we call training is abusive brainwashing. Media is of the same piece (I include half-awake Moyers.) as materialism, debt panic and sadistic fundamentalist religion distract us like a pacifier or baby's mobile. We're like Marlon Brando riding in the car with his gangsta brother who realizes too late,"I coulda been a contenda!"

I am quixotic, but I subscribe to the ideas of Paulo Freire who believed people should invent their own education, starting with attempts to define and alleviate their most vexing problems. This blog should be an instrument in that effort. That is why I ask Socratic questions.

Way back in the strip-mined mountains, some worked out unemployed wretches had a meeting about county schools. One suggested,"We have absolutely nothing. I think that entitles us to wish for our dreams." Many of us (Canadians too) are reaching that realization.
Lets suspend licking our old wounds for a moment and think what we would want if we could have what is good for most people. How do we get there?

Given that neither presidential candidate is telling the truth, extravagance just continues the mask. Hoopla, while the country collapses. Keep the masses dumb and stupid. Is Obama really a US citizen? Is McCain? Neither was born in the US.
The real issues continue to be hidden from us: chemtrails poisoning us throught the US and North America, trillions of taxpayer hard-earned dollars going for illegal wars. Congress is broken for US citizens, but for hire by corporations.

Yes Ted ..independent candidates would be a start, but in order for that to happen the cost would have to be much lower.

These political parties drove up the cost to run an election mainly to keep the little honest person out of the race.

The whole system would have to be reformed and I can not imagine these political parties and "their" lawyers wanting that. So the only way to refore the system is not to support the present.


Wayne Coady Cole Harbour NS

It is clear that all of us need to support publicly financed elections (clean elections), all of us need to register as independents, and all of us need to vote all incumbents out of office for a real change.

Maybe, so!

Forty-three years later!

tears this afternoon when the Democratic Party made Senator Obama their candidate for president. I did not anticipate the tears. I recall being fired for preaching God sees us all the same, that in Christ human distinctions of gender and race, class and social position do not exist. I was fired for preaching the truth in church. Joy enveloped me this afternoon, only 33 years later. Not bad.

I burst into tear. Did not expect that at all. Joy.

Bryce MacKenzie, you are correct and this will never end as long as the "party" get to pick the candidate.

We have the same problem here in Canada , but I am hopeful that this is going to change.

More and more I am hearing people talking about the "power" these political parties have and how they use the taxpayers money to feast and feed "their" party friends.

I for one send notice to all political parties here in Nova Scotia that they are not welcome on my property. I will not support this political system for all it does is abuse the power of government.

I am a victim of Agent Orange and this was knowningly used on us at CFB Base Gagetown in 1966 and 67, at that time the power to abuse was in the hands of the Liberal party of Canada.

Our Federal and Provincial government was used by the coporate community , with the use of the political party of the day to bring in one of the most abusive laws on our books, known as "THE WORKERS COMPENSATION LEGISLATION."

All of the political parties here in Canada know that this is a Bad Faith and a very abusive law , yet they all refuse to revoke the Legislation.

Political parties are more dangerous than the mafis , the mob or the He--'s Angles . After all these parties are full of lawyers and who better to know how to exit a back door when caught with their hands in the cookie jar.

Canada and the USA both have great citizens ..but man do we ever have dirty political parties.


Wayne Coady
Cole Harbour N.S.

I believe what we truly must understand is that people in general are stupid, myself included. The founding fathers recognized this and put the electoral college in place to protect this nation. Though there needs to be legislation that eliminates lobby groups that truly control washington through greed, the primary issue with the current political parties is the fundamental fact that the majority of citizens do not bother to take the time or have the knowledge capable to make educated decisions when it comes to electing the leaders for our nation. Both political parties recognize the stupidity of the general public and thus choose candidates that will appeal to the public instead of choosing individuals who will trully lead the nation with inteligence and integrity


Yes I am a Canadian ...this is North America though and since we all share the same continent, it would be in our best interest to boot out all of these political parties.

It about time we in North America woke to hell up before we are all owned by China, I mean they do own the biggest chunk of the US debt now,

The Tarsands are in Alberta ...that other Americian State, I bet you though you only owned Alaska.

Yes we are your largest source of oil and what do we get in return ..those Chinese products the USA take in trade for the money they own China.

Can't vote in the USA yet ..but at the rate this Harper Tory Government up her is selling off Canada ..we will soon be able to.


Wayne Coady

Wayne Coady: Ain't you Canadian, from Nova Scotia, with universal health care and a tar sand economy.(Canada is our biggest source of foreign petroleum, not the middle east or Nigeria.) You can't vote here anyway. How's your job injury thing going? Don't tell us not to vote or who to vote for, Wayne. (No hard feelings) Tell us what we should do besides voting (if we wish) to get our asses out of this faschist mess. You have more freedom than us Southies.

In the course of a hectic and distracting week I forgot to thank Betsy Rate and Rick Karr for their report on middle class jeopardy in Denver (Jefferson County, Colorado).
Thanks for keeping these two employed, Journal.

I also want to thank the subjects of the report for their courage and honesty. They have plenty in common with me, my associates and family, by far most people I interact with daily. I wish I had answers or help to send.

An important fact was that several of the hair's breadth mortgage holders had earned college degrees. Some may not have been able to keep paying student loans. This is key in a world where privileged people tell us education solves economic problems. It may eventually mean that your house cleaner holds a masters degree, but in such cases, what is the point? Yep, employers may benefit from overpopulated job categories when schools keep producing more chefs, systems architects, graphic artists and so on. Lower wages, less security and fewer benefits are the result for workers.

When will we realize business can't be trusted to shape and manage education. Also, when will we understand that there is nothing wrong with learning on the job: Even doctors do it (interns/residents).

People are not usually hired on merit anyway, but because of reciprocity networks and substantive political connections. Occasionally someone possesses a needed skill or knowledge and can negotiate, but that is the exception.

I admire people like the oppressed Walmart workers who squealed on their employer over terror meetings where thty were coerced to support McCain and other anti-union candidates. Often it is the ones nearly drowned who turn the tide. Concerned Citizen and Ted M. Morgan are probably like that. I try to be...
Someone told me last night, "Collaborate in your own evolution!" She's just a common working person.

Demagogues exploited wedge issues to divide Americans. They exploited religious tyrants to make their wedge issues hold. The most infamous has been the right of women to bodily integrity. We live under the rule of religious tyrants who claim that they do not masturbate or copulate and refuse themselves to have children, but see it their duty to tell all the rest of us how to live and what to do with our bodies. They have poisoned our common life with their out-of-date theologies and philosophies. All of us know that abortion is a fail-safe operation, nothing more or less.

Of course, I vote. That is the only outlet we have short of madness.

When we vote this means we support the system we have.

If we want to change this abusive political system then we must stop voting,for any of the political party candidates.

It is time that the citizens of the USA took back what should be their "governing system" . As it stands right now, the elite legal community use these political parties to hijack the Nations. These parties load up the bureaucracy with "their" sheep and we poor little people pay their way.

Wake up America ...stop supporting political parties with your time, your money and your vote.


Wayne Coady

When my little brother faced an armed state policemen when he reported for work, he experienced what one must name police state capitalism. This is what we must change. The plutocracy that dominates our lives destroys our lives. It is time to change our lives. The paid intellectual gofers for the plutocrats flood the public world with their noise. It's time to stop listening to their nonsense. It's time to look at what is and build from what is what ought to be. It is time for government to stop sending the police to herd workers and instead send them to defend workers.

Well, I don't have to work unless I want to eat or heat the house.

Ted Michael Morgan: I'm happy that you don't have to work anymore. If we'd all be honest we'd admit we don't want a job. So many people, like me, claim to be artists and writers, just to assert they are their own boss. You see the links on here often, older women painters, men who have discovered the answers, photographers taking socially expected images with similar digital cameras. Creativity ain't what it used to be. What's your art, Ted?

Everyone's buskar centavos now, scratching and conniving. Even Mike Hagen at KOPN RadiOrbit retired from disgust, and he was way out there. (The guy who had Paul Laffoley on talking about how explosives were built in the WTC for eventual obsolescence.)

Ted, who will benefit if I walk to Washington in January? They busted harmless videographers at the Denver DNC. So dissenters are just monkeys who belong in cages, because of a sadist majority.

I recall the films of Vitorio De Sica, especially "Miracle in Milan" or "The Bicycle Thief." It was a magical interum following WWII, when Alan Dulles brought over the Nazi mind control scientists. Anyway People Power is the fantasy of the Milan film (Laurie Anderson's favorite film). I kind of want the lives of good people to be like that film.

I am a common person who worked for the City of Baltimore (AFCME steward). I tried to make everyday like a film set for my co-workers. What do I make now? "Too old to work and too young to die... useless because no one wants to hear what I'm saying."

The Democratic Party put on a good show last night, you bet they did and so will the other party.

This is what it is all about..."show", noting more!

I made up my mind to notify all party candidates that they are not welcome on my property. I will not vote in a political system that is structured in a way that places all the power and control in the hands of a few rich lawyers and "their" fat cat friends.

Have you ever noticed that it is aways the legal community who are in control and that they know more about us than the CIA do see lawyers are embeded in government thanks to the party system and a bunch of dumbed down voters.


Wayne Coady

"Describe a dream job for yourself. Be realistic and base it on the skills and wisdom you have gained over time."

I have liked most jobs I have had. I have most liked those that were in union shops with good benefits and fair pay. But the two government jobs I held for a quarter century did provide good work but just not much pay.

The answer to your questin involves an old Dan Acroyd routine from SNL that does not bear posting here.

I am now retirend and don't have to work if I don't want to work.

Describe a dream job for yourself. Be realistic and base it on the skills and wisdom you have gained over time.

The only job that comes to mind is from the SNL routine that Dan Acroyd did with Dan Garvin (or something like that) male prostitute. The skit had something to do with tresses.

I like most job I have had. I would like to be paid for my time and labor, something that seems beyond the keen of the jerks who run companies today.

The Democratic Party put on a good show last night. That is okay, but we need much, much more these day. We need a social revolution that we Americans are not ready to enact.

What I have noticed from the current politcal campaign is that most Americans will have even worse health benefits than they now have. Both parties are proposing plans that wreck current benefits with no increase in coverage for those not excluded.

There are some good reasons for the decline but the question is whether we will have what is necessary for general health.

For a quarter century I had two dream jobs, ones worth doing that I enjoyed doing. I worked in New Orleans for the first seven years in a corrupt environment and under a corrutp government, but I loved the work.

Ted Michael Morgan:
Describe a dream job for yourself. Be realistic and base it on the skills and wisdom you have gained over time.

"Too old to work, and too young to die," goes the old labor song. Why do you think people like you and myself are not working up to our potential? Does age play a part? The kind of people who write on this blog present obvious negatives to those hiring in this predatory economy, I guess.

My dream job would be a nickle a word and some receptive ears, right here. Take heart for what you still have, Ted. Your friend, (

A Democratic Party strategy to focus on Western states might work for the party, but I hope that they nail attention to struggles of low income people. Too many people are lost in our current society. I don’t hear either party focus on the needs of the marginal people forced to work as “truck stop waitresses”, sales associates at J. C. Penney, or other such marginal jobs.

Permit me a few comments about last night's Democratic Convention.

Michelle Obama was great and happily convinces us that the
next (I hope) first lady will lend character and honesty to the
White House that has not been seen there since Eleanor Roosevelt.

BUT, I must draw attention to the rest of the Democrats last night
who convinced me of something else: if they continue this
lukewarm stance toward this Bush Republican administration that
has damned near crippled this country with its corruption and
incompetence, then I would like them to know that they are going
to LOSE in November -- and for the same reasons that they lost
in 2004!

And, Democrats: Get rid of these asinine SMILES and show that you know how much this country is HURTING!

And get rid of these GD 'funny' hats that are only a symbol of
Republican Light. This is not a hard call to make, Democrats!
We have a country to save from going under. We have a very hard
job to do in recovering from this 8 year assault on the people
of this country! Much more of this John Kerry 'nice guy'
attitude toward thse Bush Republican Swine will lead only to
another 4 years of crippling of this country!

ENOUGH of this 'bipartisan' BS! At least MENTION all of this
corruption and incompetence of the last 7+ years!

I don't like to talk like this, but I must when I see what is
supposed to be the opposition party SMILING at a regime that
is ruining us! Now, get your heads out of your a**es and start
acting like you should toward the enemy of our people!

The first evening of this convention, except for Michelle,

07:08:08am 08/26/2008Maggie

When Polk allowed for the financiers to take over Government due to their "lobbying" monies, Government quit being a Democracy in the making and turned into a Plutocracy, which for all intents and purposes is nothing more than reverse Communism, the key is total control of the people in all aspects.

Posted by: Steve Engelhardt: Quit treating the politicos as rock stars and more as public servants. If they do not serve the public interest then get rid of them, all of them. I registered a webpage as recallall to reserve a starting point.

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Yes, absolutely - and thanks for doing some work to point us in the right direction. Our government has lost its focus of 'the government of the people, by the people and for the people' that Lincoln wrote about in his Gettysburg Address.

The politicians we have entrusted our lives and our country to have failed miserably with the job they have been given. Politicians public servants? You have it backwards...we are their servants, since they think they are royalty.

The politicians are corrupt, dishonest, greedy, power hungry, egomaniacs that will do anything to maintain power. The only conscience they serve is that of their special interest groups that shell out the dollars.

You ever hear some of these guys brag how they screw us? I can't find the one guy that was bragging how he had perfected how to manipulate the system. I think he was from PA. But here is 'Big Daddy' strutting his stuff.

If these slap happy idiots wish to sit around all day masturbating each other with their bloated egos that is fine. They wouldn't do so much damage if they just kept their hands in each others pockets. But that only goes so far with filling up their days. Once they get bored doing their political sex dance, they get to work dreaming up new ways to empty our pockets and squander our tax dollars.

Our government has become so complex, that almost nothing substantive to help America can be done. We need more transparency in our government, especially with the budded bills they vote on.

And we need a recall system or some other citizen powered oversight committee to correct the mistakes the politicians perpetrate. In life we can usually change things if we found we have made a mistake. But in the political world we have no oversight committee nor way to correct the inevitable mistakes.

As far as distractions the previous responder mentioned? Many people live lives full of stress and pain. They need distractions to living to escape the ugliness of life. Just look at all the reality bullshit TV that is so popular. People would rather live other peoples lives, than live their own lives.

I seldom even watch TV because it has degenerated so much. And the commercials...ugh...they blare the volume to get their point across 20 minutes or more of commercials an hour. The only TV I will watch must be taped to speed by the dribble.

That was one of the reasons I had never seen Moyers shows. It was just by luck that I had come across it 2 weeks ago. And to my delight and to Grady's horror...I'm most grateful I did.

The point of the conventions, like the race, is one of distraction. Both parties are owned by the Corporations. Neither will bring change. Any candidates with something valuable to say has been driven out.

Quit treating the politicos as rock stars and more as public servants. If they do not serve the public interest then get rid of them, all of them. I registered a webpage as recallall to reserve a starting point.

In your program thair was a young woman who didn't want a $10 an hour job after loosing her job, Well okay I guess she had her reasons, I don't know. As for me I lost a job due to closing of a factory after almost 32 years of employment, after months of looking I took a job making much less than what the young woman refused.I can only speak for myself but I fault that young woman for refusing $10 an hour. I know it's no American dream but she could have worked and kept on looking for the good paying job. Anyway thats how I see things.

Posted by: Zoltan: The populace is given two choices from these seemingly competing parties to elect one president. The Dems and Repubs are two talons on the same bird of prey. They suck!

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If they only offered an abstention vote I would go to the poles to vote that until something better was served up to vote for.

I have used your website to post comments before, but sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.

There is a security feature that requires me to enter two words in an image, but the image didn't show up. I am using a Mozilla Seamonkey browser (maybe that is the problem?).

I received this e-mail earlier this evening:

After 19 yrs and 7 months of giving my job every ounce of strength I could muster
I was fired...........on the Tuesday morning after labor day.
I was met at the door that morning by an on duty ga state trooper (armed).
being the dedicated employee I was I showed up for work that day after a Monday holiday
30 minutes early. he met me at the door with his hand on a 9 mm pistol attached to his hip,,,,,,,,,,,,,
ordered me off the property and told me not to return until my scheduled start time..
I went and sat down in my car in the parking lot. the armed trooper followed me
out to my car and again with his hand on that 9mm ordered me completely off the property.
I had to drive down the street and wait parked on the side of the road.
30 mins later I returned. They escorted me into a room with a vcr tv.....popped in a tape
and was terminated by someone on the tape. it took less than 20 mins.
during my employment there twice I was selected employee of the year, once by management , once by my co-workers
at one point of my career with the company I went 15 years without missing a day of work.
I finally had to call in sick the day they took out my appendix..
When my Father died I took six days off from work to watch him die and to help my Mother pick out his
coffin......the company charged my time off as vacation time.
I paid (through state taxes) the salary of that armed state trooper who ordered me off my job that day.
I have been paying social security taxes for 39 years........since 1969.....
I have earned the right to have my own opinion about labour relations in my country......
I do not have to explain, defend or apologize to anyone for those beliefs..
my birth family enjoys my company about as much as I enjoy their company .
it would be impossible for any of them to have the slightest clue as to what those beliefs are.
Before I sent this to you I asked a friend if I should...................Part of her reply:
"I think you should send it......................................... He (and the rest of them) have you "pigeon-holed" for whatever reasons. Your opinions come from personal experiences that they know nothing about and should be respected as such. He has to realize that not everything is a political debate. Some things in life are just more personal than that.

The populace is given two choices from these seemingly competing parties to elect one president. The Dems and Repubs are two talons on the same bird of prey. They suck!

I was disappointed when Bill said that the delegates would do well to go out into Denver to meet the people who are struggling. Duh. The delegates are from the same walks of life as those he interviewed. This is not a wealthy group of party elites. The delegates I know are hardworking individuals who are worried about losing jobs, making ends meet, buying food, gas and especially oil. They don't need to go out to get the stories, they are living those stories. I wish Bill would profile the delegates, many of whom have stories as compelling as those he interviewed in Denver.

Those single moms showcased on Moyers show will be lucky to even be alive as our artificial world decomposes and TEOTWAK arrives.

Now I don't have crystal ball, And I don't claim to know everything under the sun. If I did so I'd be an atheist, as they are the only ones that know everything under the sun.

No, I am just a lowly agnostic and just don't know.

But as a futurist and survivalist I have to do the best I can with processing the data that I do have and preparing for an uncertain future.

And unless the brainiacs can figure out how to burn air and water or pave our roads and make roofing shingles and tires from corn our future looks grim, very grim.

Go to dieoff on the web and have a peek at your future for yourself.

When it comes to middle class, I used to be there myself. Now I have to struggle somewhat to get by.

No, I don't have it anywhere as bad as the moms on the show. But I can say if one has a family, it is getting tougher and tougher to just get by - in almost any class except the very wealthy.

Sure I have investments and can draw on them - but that is not sustainable living is it? So I live within my 'current income' means.

I can't afford vacations of a few thousand dollars on a whim any longer and food affordability is an issue. I have to watch my trips to keep the gas bill in line. And med bills...forget it.

Things will ease up a bit once my kid is out of college. But by then peak oil will have no doubt taken away any such benefit and account for more of my income being spoken for. And a new trend now is kinds in their 20's can't afford to leave home and the parents of still stuck supporting them.

But there was no real guarantee that each generation will do better than the last was there? Warren buffet believes otherwise and feels that prosperity is endless. His mantra is his children will do better than him and their children and grandchildren will do better than their parents an on and on into perpetuity.

Well, maybe for the richest man in the world this may hold true. But the Buffet fantasy seems to fit right in with the never Goldilocks economy fantasy they promote at CNBC. It has just not proven that way in real life for me and countless others - they are just fairy tales.

In reality it has become more of a case of just trying to survive than outdoing our parents. Not Keeping Up With Our Parents: The Decline of the Professional Middle Class by Nan Mooney is a book that echoes this plight?

In another thread Jeff, offered some good advice for every American to take to heart - growing food. I started to learn about food production and foraging this past year - more so out of design than from desire.

Should we blame the president? Blame the congress? Blame Chindia?

We are all to blame. We built our world on the prospects of never ending cheap energy fueled by fossil fuels and our drug supply is drying up. And unless the president can pull crude oil out his ass - no one can fix us.

Peak oil can't be fixed - it can only be prepared for. And the better we prepare the less deaths will come about from it.

On the news awhile back they reported that 'Meals on Wheels' is having problems meeting its demands due to high gas and food costs.

They said that 2 persons died from not having deliveries of the meals due to volunteers not being able to afford the gas.

These may be some of the first deaths attributed to PO. How will ti be when gas is $10 or $15 a gallon? Or worse unavailable at any price?

You still have some valuable time left to prepare for what awaits you down the road. We are in the 'Indian Summer' of a post carbon world. Don't wait until the winter sets in to start work on your preparedness efforts.

Posted by: RE Mant |

The problem here is that the "downturn" is due mainly to monetary policy and somewhat to govt debt, but the Democratic candidate's and his party's solution is to give out money, cut taxes, or reduce interest rates, which will only result in even more misery. How can what caused the problem in the first place solve it? And I have to take exception to the implication here that this election is the same as 1993. When Clinton was elected, he had to be persuaded by Alan Greenspan to end the budget deficit. When Reagan was elected a decade earlier, Paul Volcker persuaded him to end inflation by increasing the interest rate. Neither party is exempt from monetary and fiscal abuse, and since we no longer have gold to keep us straight, the price of commodities and food must do the job, indeed will do the job, whether we like it or not.

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Well, we are in a new era. We will be entering our post carbon phase of existence.

Back in the day, crude was still affordable by the masses. The bottleneck with crude back in the 70's was an artificial one caused by OPEC. Our upcoming crude problems are out of OPEC's hands. Our new problem is how to squeeze the last few drops of crude from out of the rocks.

Sustainability...lets be honest, we only pay it lip service.

We talk of living in a sustainable world, yet our actions betray our true feelings. All we have to do is to look at the stock market to see what happens when growth declines even a little.

Even if a company yields stable earning, but does not grow its earnings it is looked down upon. Stability and balance is part of a sustainable footprint, yet we shun such balance.

With one breath we talk about cutting global warming and how we have to cut our dependence of fossil fuel.

Then with the next breath we demand no cut backs in our standard of living, we must spend and consume above all more, build faster, build bigger.

The GDP must only go up, up and away...all the while this consumption just increases global warming and keeps depleting the fossil fuels faster and faster.

Sick...sick..sick mentality, buy more cars, build more houses and monstrosities of architecture, spend more but 'cut back' to save our dear fossil fuels. For all practical purpose we will be out of crude oil and natural gas in 2 or 3 decades and possible much sooner.

Our economy is not based on sustainable health - it is based low interest credit to encourage compulsive spending, debt and living a life of constant consumption with a 'disposable mentality' when it comes to durable goods.

All this consumption to artificially fuel our economy to make our retirement funds only go up contributes to more and more global warming and the depletion of our natural resources.

Then the governments juggle the numbers to make the inflation figures seem artificially low, so everyone's retirement portfolio will make them happy so they will continue to buy and consume more...and on it goes....IT IS ALL WE KNOW and the bill is coming due soon!

No doubt some of the increase in crude is due to greed, speculation and hype. And, it may all be true that what we have been told about peak oil is in fact a hoax.

Same as the skeptics that claim global warming is a hoax.

It may all be a conspiracy, just a cruel trick on the consumer to line the pockets of industry with more money...only time will settle this debate

The top 3 users of crude are the US, China and Japan.

They consume almost 12 billion barrels of crude a year ( 11,987,330,000 barrels) .

Collectively the world uses 31 billion barrels of oil a year (31,015,410,000)

If the Peak Oil skeptics think the supply of fossil fuel is limitless and we can keep on burning billions upon billions of barrels a year of crude forever, then they are sadly mistaken.

I always tell the proponents saying peak oil is a conspiracy and think that we have an unlimited amount of oil, natural gas, coal, uranium...actions speak louder than words.

We can look at Hubbert's prediction of the USA's peak.

He was exactly right.

We can look at global oil production and see what the general trend is.

Look at the UK and other countries like the US that had been energy exporters in their heyday. Now they are all energy importers.

We can look at the trend in drilling to see how deep we have to go to find oil. How many big finds are being made?

We can look at the quality of crude being produced.

Is it light sweet crude or high sulfur, heavy, hard to refine crude?

The light sweet is just that 'light' and is on the surface of the oil pool. Whereas the less desirable heavy sulfated crude is on the bottom of the pool. Does the phrase hitting the bottom the barrel mean anything to you?

Lately we have been putting much of our hope in the tar sands of Canada.

When we have to get the oil out of the sand and shale it sounds like we are hitting the bottom of the barrel again. Even talk about getting our gas from refining bitumen coal.

Now, some people say we are saving the light sweet crude for national defense and using the foreign oil and tar sands first. I don't know, I have no inside information about that claim.

We get about 15% of our natural gas from Canada. That 15% amounts to 50% of the natural gas Canada produces. The US sucks down more energy than any other one can come close to us.

Our demands for natural gas are on the rise, just as our demands are for all fossil fuels. Once demand outstrips production we are headed over Hubert's peak in any number of areas besides crude. We can see peak production issues in natural gas, uranium, food or water, just as we will see with crude oil.

It is an easy task to see how much oil is produced in the world. But finding the 'exact peak date' for world oil production is hard to pinpoint. For one thing, some countries production are erratic and they are not transparent with their real production and discovery data.

Also oil production is not an exact science and still requires a little luck. We may find a lucky hit down the road that brings in a gusher to distort some of the figures.

No one knows the exact peak date for world oil production, but we do know that time will come in the not so distant future. But finding the peak is not hard problem once we can look back on it by a few years....but we need some time to do it...again, only time will settle this debate.

"If the public does think briefly about future oil supplies, the question usually asked is, "How long will oil last?" This is the wrong question. Oil will be extracted in some insignificant quantity perhaps 200 years from now. The critical question is: When does the peak of world oil production occur?" ~ Richard C. Duncan

Once again, thank you for your very informative program.

It is clear that all of us need to support publicly financed elections (clean elections), all of us need to register as independents, and all of us need to vote all incumbents out of office for a real change.

I encourage everyone to see the new film documentary (now in theaters) "I.O.U.S.A". This film is about the "Fiscal Wake-Up Tour" currently happening throughout the country led by former U.S. Head Comptroller, David Walker, and the Concord Coalition, and many other financial and economic experts. This documentary is about our looming federal revenues and expenditures fiscal gap that continues to be growing with no end in sight. With the retiring baby boomers and the huge costs of Social Security and Medicare David Walker and others are very concerned that our politicians are not dealing with this huge fiscal crisis. A must see for everyone - high schoolers on up.

Bill, I am hoping you can have either Robert Bixby (Concord Coalition) and/or David Walker (Pete Peterson Foundation) soon on your program to talk about this fiscal crisis, especially since our current Presidential candidates are not discussing it nor is the Senate or Congress. As David Walker states, if this fiscal crisis is not dealt with, our country will become bankrupt.

William T.: I'm glad things are finer than fruitcake in your gated wonderland. Have you considered the possibility that people are cowed and afraid to voice justified resentment? Maybe you are the type of authority figure who merits lies to the face.
You stumble when you say people retain hope of getting rich, and therefore tolerate any elite malfeasance. Wealth is a crime when it deprives, and is even worse when it enables intimidation or the exertion of unjust power.
Would you keep murder legal on the chance that you might someday want to kill someone who displeases you?
"Becoming or remaining extremely wealthy (or extremely poor, adds Moyers) is difficult or impossible in a fair and just society." Consider now, Sir, the wonderful possibilities that have been preempted by the concentration of wealth. Our country deserves better. Wealth and income disparity are our number one problem that must be solved before we can tackle the environment and the dearth of economic opportunity. "Old- fashioned" is not the word you are looking for unless you mean usury, wage slavery, hard child labor and human trafficking. That is what we have come to, in case you are deaf,numb, and blind. Get out de cocoon, my man!

Well, I am retired and I am not fine. However, my nephews are doing well! They can vote for Republicans and not have to worry about being drafted to fight the wars that they vote to support.

As Ms Messing stated I am retired and I am fine. My children and grandchildren are not so lucky. Most are falling in with the rest of the country, jobs, healthcare are at a premium. I am sad for our country. Very upset withthe people we have put our trust in. Thank you Bill and others who are looking out for us. keep it up please. Let me kow what I can do to help.

Most of the folks in my community are doing OK it seems. They know the economy moves in cycles, that the global economy is changing many things and that they will have to make personal adjustments throughout their lives.

Delayed gratification and saving for the proverbial rainy day are things they learned from their grandparents, many of whom lived during very difficult times in the early 20th century. And maybe they were Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts and took the old saying `Be Prepared' seriously

They seem to be 'old fashioned' in many ways, they view their homes as a place to live in not as a highly leveraged investment, they are generally frugal and don't buy things they can't afford. They keep their cars for a long time and pay off their credit cards each month. They seem to have small families and recognize that they should not have more children than they can support.
And they work hard to make sure their children understand the need to gain a profession or set of skills that will enable them to be economically self sufficient and prepare them for the inevitable ups and downs of life.

I don't think they really resent rich people or big corporations. They know that rich folks are a tiny part of the population and probably hope someday to be rich themselves. For that reason I don't think they see much sense in the goverment trying to punish the rich or redistribute their wealth to poor people. And they are more concerned with the low quality of teaching in schools than anything else. In fact some of them think that if schools could fire bad teachers and pay good ones more, the kids would get a better education and there would eventually be less poverty. They'd rather that the government provide a solid foundation on which they can raise their families as they see fit and use their individual talents and ambitions to the best possible advantage.

Good show Bill.

Conventions, like the Olympics, are a manufactured diversion from the issues we should confront. I could have excused Bill from hostageship had he not self-confessed to watching bikini volleyball and wearing a holey Chinese t-shirt. (Was it a "Just Do It" job?)
CONFRONT is the word of the day, boys and girls. Mr. Bill is asking us the wrong question. He should ask,"Are you afraid of the government and corporation reaction when you have the urge to complain?" (He would have no problem asking this in China (our doppelganger).

I reserve the right to say more later. (Hear that, eavesdropping vampires!)

Jim Wavada-5:58pm
I recommend "The Chicago Ten",
a partially animated documentary about the show trial following the 1968 Democratic Convention. I predict we will see its like again following this year's election cycle. (At least I hope we will.) Terry Gross (WHYY Fresh Air) had an insightful interview with Brett Morgen, this documentary's director, which can be found in her archives.

Coley and I appreciate that our comrade Ted Michael Morgan has not only had his bread jeopardized by political repression, but his immortal soul as well. It's enough to drive you to the devil and make you dance like Saint Vitus to the Inauguration in Washington Jan. 2009. Now whom of you has committed to this patriotic responsibility? Plans should be formulated now. Coley proposes massings all around the city, with coordinated advances up every major avenue from the Virginia and Maryland suburbs. Maybe the depleted National Guard will join in to keep us safe and air their grievances.
Yes, Comrade Wavada, the buzzard-headed belly dragging jackals are SUPPOSED to fear the PEOPLE.

Stupid! Why do you think they call them PARTIES. George Carlin would have to stoop to point this out, maybe even Jerry Seinfeld.

We don't need more parties: Why not the JUSTICE RESPONSIBILITY or the GREEN NECESSITY.

Also: RE Mant: I've admired your wisdom, but why are you so Zeitgeist-obsessed with gold and the illusions of monetary and fiscal policy. Is it like some esoteric occult fetish? Stop and think: Nothing is REAL besides human labor and the wonders of the Earth. Think substantively sometimes. (You ain't no pirate.) When you hunger sufficiently, the price of bread will exceed that of platinum.

The problem here is that the "downturn" is due mainly to monetary policy and somewhat to govt debt, but the Democratic candidate's and his party's solution is to give out money, cut taxes, or reduce interest rates, which will only result in even more misery. How can what caused the problem in the first place solve it? And I have to take exception to the implication here that this election is the same as 1993. When Clinton was elected, he had to be persuaded by Alan Greenspan to end the budget deficit. When Reagan was elected a decade earlier, Paul Volcker persuaded him to end inflation by increasing the interest rate. Neither party is exempt from monetary and fiscal abuse, and since we no longer have gold to keep us straight, the price of commodities and food must do the job, indeed will do the job, whether we like it or not.

My anger grows as I watch avoidance of our economic problems; wealth continues to move from ordinary people to our oligarchs.

For one thing, I have stopped attending church because my pastor and others completely deny the problem. They refuse to discuss it.

As appropriate, I suppose as isolated public demonstration zones in Minneapolis, and makeshift detention camps on the outskirts of Denver. An outside observer might think our political parties are afraid of their constituents. It reminds me of Chicago in '68. I wish they actually did have reason to fear us.

I can express it no more succincltly than kaishinden79 ("Greed & power in the name of freedom & democracy."). Kudos.

My civil service job as a children's librarian kept me secure rather than earning big bucks. Now recently retired, I still have security through retirement, social security and paid healthcare. My son, daughter-in-law and four-year-old granddaughter, however, have none of these things. No healthcare, no job security, not one of the things that my parents thought that their grandchildren would have. I am able to help support my son and his family because his grandparents left me assets which I do not depend on. Those assets are being used in place of an economy able to support its workforce. Both my son and his wife work, work hard, but without healthcare insurance, they are destined to spend their money for emergency medical care. Any healthcare issue immediately puts them behind because they live from month to month, hopefully from paycheck to paycheck, unless one of them loses a job, or their hours are cut back. There are many opportunities to pull even hard working families into debt but very few opportunities to help them get enough money ahead to give them any security.

Greed & power in the name of freedom & democracy.

The political parties really don't matter any longer to the voters, only to the party elite. And they can afford all that expense. What would the media enterprises do if there were not staged events to cover for two weeks? Actually report real new? Nope! Just interview and talk over the top of one another; that's all.

The extravagance of the conventions this year should be an exception. The whole nomination process has been an exception, considering the players from inception, in the upcoming election. Will the cost of the convention add to the tax burden of the public? Those who vote will understand the extravagance.

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