2.20.2017

Why They Hate Us.

Why Do So Many Americans Fear Muslims? Decades of Denial About America's Role in the World.:

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The Press

The Press is Trump’s Enemy, Not The Left’s Friend | Ian Welsh:
The media works for its owners. As of 2000, 80% of US media was owned by six companies, and that number is higher now.  The media serves the interests of the people who own it and anyone else’s only incidentally and insofar as those interests don’t contradict the owners. Furthermore and this point almost all journalists and editors in American media are Ivy League grinders.

My take is along those lines.

The press isn't really left-wing, regardless of what the Fox Propaganda Network says,  It's just not very good at its job, informing the public. It's a  corporate-controlled, Ivy-League led, establishment-focused, institution that's designed to make money for it's owners. Anything outside it's bubble is ignored or destroyed.



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2.19.2017

Social Security


On Friday, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) introduced a bill to make Social Security solvent for generations while also expanding benefits. 
The bill would lift the payroll tax cap on highest earners and extend the life of the program through 2078. Currently, Social Security is funded through a 6.2% payroll tax that only applies to the first $127,200 a person earns in a year. The Sanders plan is similar to one he proposed during his presidential campaign and would lift the cap on all income above $250,000.

The D's nominated the wrong person.

2.16.2017

Trump: Two-state solution

Trumps announcement on the Two-State Solution is meaningless as Marwin Bishara explains.

The problem is Netanyahu doesn't agree to two states and does not agree to one state. This whole one state thing means that Jews, Christians and Muslims, Palestinians and Israelis will live in one democratic state. Netanyahu and his coalition do not agree to one state and they reject the two-state solution. The Palestinians agree to one state and they are happy with two states; what they disagree to is an apartheid system, where there are two systems in one land: one superior for Israelis and one inferior for the Palestinians."

Trump: Two-state solution not only way to achieve peace | Israel News | Al Jazeera:

Juan Cole has more: Trump plots to keep Palestinians Stateless forever



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On Russia

Israel interferes in our politics all the time, and it's never a scandal:

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2.15.2017

The Leakers

A good one from GG on leakers.

The Leakers Who Exposed Gen. Flynn’s Lie Committed Serious — and Wholly Justified — Felonies:
But this is just the tawdry, craven game of Washington. People with no actual beliefs shamelessly take diametrically opposite views on fundamental political questions based exclusively on whether it helps or hurts their leaders. Thus, the very same Democrats who just three months ago viewed illegal leaking as a grave sin today view it as an act of heroic #Resistance.

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2.14.2017

The Empty Countryside

Death throes of Russia's iconic countryside | Russia | Al Jazeera: "Death throes of Russia's iconic countryside Rapid urbanisation and industrial farming has led to a catastrophic situation in Russia's poverty-stricken hinterlands."

Although rapid urbanisation and industrial farming depopulate rural areas from China to Canada, the situation in Russia is especially catastrophic. Almost 36,000 villages, or one-in-four, have 10 residents or fewer. Another 20,000 are abandoned, according to Russia's latest nationwide census conducted in 2010.
Fewer than one-quarter of Russians live in rural areas these days - three times fewer than 120 years ago, according to the only tsarist-era census done in 1897.

This has been happening in the US for over 100 years too and played a part in Mr Trumps support.

It is a bug feature of corporatism.

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2.11.2017

Work

What do you want to be when you grow up?... or

"I mean how do you hope to toil so that you and your family might not starve?”

from

The Cult of Work | Hazlitt:

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Trump vs Pence

Something the D's seem to forget from .| Ian Welsh:

And if you get rid of Trump, you get Pence. He’ll make a lot less crazy headlines, but he’s a theocrat’s theocrat and an oligarch’s tool. He will be as bad as Trump in most ways and worse in others (for example, on gay rights).

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2.07.2017

Keep It Simple

A good post on keeping government simple.

Keep It Simple and Take Credit : Democracy Journal:
When society decided citizens should be able to read, we didn’t provide tax credits for books, we created public libraries. When we decided peoples’ houses shouldn’t burn down, we didn’t provide savings accounts for private fire insurance, we hired firefighters and built fire stations. 
This complexity is one of the main reasons people like to hate the government. Dealing with any government program or tax credit is always a complicated, pain-in the-ass for the consumer. It is never easy.




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