Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Avarice, Fraud, Thievery and a Pimple

Post 9/11 2018 is an excellent time to consider where we are going as a nation. In fact, it will serve us well to look at who we have become and who we want to become.

With that thought in mind, here are two discussions for your consideration.

The first helps us understand that we have made zero progress since the 2008 “recession” devastated our nation. I do mean devastated. Because from my Michigan perspective, we suffered a 10-year economic depression brought on, in large part, by predatory bankers and outright fraud. (Have you forgotten the millions who lost their homes; the failed businesses; and the unscrupulous debt collectors”?) And, worse, the bankster frauders were rewarded with billions in public money bailouts while homeowners suffer without relief and were forced to overcome financial ruin “by pulling themselves up by the bootstraps”, if they managed to hang on to their boots from the layers of blood-sucking bill collectors.

The second discussion confronts us with the certain realization that we are not the people we believe ourselves to be. In fact, Mr. Trump is a manifestation of the people we have allowed ourselves to be.

Oh, my!

The questions which perplex me are: How and when will we as a people decide we’ve hand enough? When will we end the scamming, fraud and thievery not only condoned by our society but seemingly cherished by it? And, finally, honestly, do you believe you and your children and grandchildren, are well served by, “a pimple on the face of the Presidency”, a President who is “merely a noxious, venal, and ineffectual blowhard, who has assembled a team of associates who are themselves, with few exceptions, noxious, venal, or ineffectual”? When will we as a people take responsibility for correcting our government and force it to serve our interests— the interests of the 99.9%?

When Timothy Geithner Defied Barack Obama, Jacob Sugarman, 11 Sept 2018

“Less than a week after The New York Times ran an op-ed by an anonymous Trump administration official openly challenging the president’s fitness for office, the question of who wrote the piece continues to vex Beltway pundits and the White House alike. But Donald Trump is hardly the first occupant of the Oval Office to face insubordination, potentially from somebody in his inner circle. As The New Republic’s David Dayen reminds us, Timothy Geithner’s “refusal to obey his boss” altered the course of the Great Recession—and likely set us on a path toward Trump’s election.”

“In March 2009, the U.S. economy was imploding. Citigroup had reported losses in excess of $8 billion the previous quarter, and two government bailouts totaling $45 billion, along with an additional $306 billion in loan guarantees, had proved insufficient to right the ship. While President Barack Obama had publicly dismissed nationalizing the country’s most distressed banks, Larry Summer—then National Economic Council director—was intrigued by the idea, so Obama ordered the Treasury Department to explore a radical restructuring of Citigroup.”

“Geithner simply didn’t follow the request,” writes Dayen, citing “Confidence Men” author Ron Suskind. “It was a classic Washington move: When your boss asks for something you don’t like, just ignore it and hope that the request isn’t necessary when the boss follows up.”

“Geithner adamantly rejected this account, telling Suskind, “I don’t slow-walk the president on anything.” But as Dayen notes, Obama tacitly admitted that that was what happened, expressing his frustration with “the speed with which the bureaucracy could exercise my decision.” -more-

After Trump, The Donald in the Rearview Mirror, Andrew J. Bacevich, Tomgram. 11 Sept 2018.

“Donald Trump’s tenure as the 45th U.S. president may last another few weeks, another year, or another 16 months.  However unsettling the prospect, the leaky vessel that is the S.S. Trump might even manage to stay afloat for a second term.  Nonetheless, recent headline-making revelations suggest that, like some derelict ship that's gone aground, the Trump presidency may already have effectively run its course. What, then, does this bizarre episode in American history signify?”

“Let me state my own view bluntly: forget the atmospherics.  Despite the lies, insults, name calling, and dog whistles, almost nothing of substance has changed. Nor will it.”

“To a far greater extent than Trump’s perpetually hyperventilating critics are willing to acknowledge, the United States remains on a trajectory that does not differ appreciably from what it was prior to POTUS #45 taking office. Post-Trump America, just now beginning to come into view, is shaping up to look remarkably like pre-Trump America.”

“I understand that His Weirdness remains in the White House. Yet for all practical purposes, Trump has ceased to govern. True, he continues to rant and issue bizarre directives, which his subordinates implement, amend, or simply disregard as they see fit. “

“Except in a ceremonial sense, the office of the presidency presently lies vacant. Call it an abdication-in-place. It’s as if British King Edward VIII, having abandoned his throne for “the woman I love,” continued to hang around Buckingham Palace fuming about the lack of respect given Wallis and releasing occasional bulletins affirming his admiration for Adolf Hitler.”

“In Trump’s case, it’s unlikely he ever had a more serious interest in governing than Edward had in performing duties more arduous than those he was eventually assigned as Duke of Windsor. Nonetheless, the 60-plus million Americans who voted for Trump did so with at least the expectation that he was going to shake things up.”

“And bigly. Remember, he was going to “lock her up.”  He would “drain the swamp” and “build a wall” with Mexico volunteering to foot the bill. Without further ado, he would end “this American carnage.” Meanwhile, “America First” would form the basis for U.S. foreign policy. Once Trump took charge, things were going to be different, as he and he alone would “make America great again.”

“Yet the cataclysm that Trump’s ascendency was said to signify has yet to occur. Barring a nuclear war, it won’t.” -more-

So, in classic, Dirty-Hairy-"Do you feel lucky?"-tone, we ask ourselves this question: "Are you ready (to do something about these problems... or not?

Do you feel lucky?

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Lets get real. Why 9/11?

An estimated 200 people jumped to their deaths on 9/11 2001.

9/11 Trillions: Follow The Money

Forget for one moment everything you've been told about September 11, 2001. 9/11 was a crime. And as with any crime, there is one overriding imperative that detectives must follow to identify the perpetrators: follow the money. This is an investigation of the 9/11 money trail.

Who had the Means, Motive, Opportunity to pull off the 9/11 murders?

The Interview:
Interview 744 – Kevin Ryan Exposes “Another 19” 9/11 Suspects

9/11 researcher Kevin Ryan of joins us once again to discuss his new must-read book, “Another Nineteen: Investigating Legitimate 9/11 Suspects.” We discuss some of the individuals and corporations identified in his book and those who have helped to cover up investigations of them, as well as what works like this can accomplish and where the 9/11 truth movement should head from here.

The Book:
Another Nineteen: Investigating Legitimate 9/11 Suspects Jun 14, 2013
by Kevin Ryan

Were the crimes of September 11, 2001 solely the work of Osama bin Laden and nineteen troubled young Arabs, or were more powerful people involved? After a decade of investigation, the long-time co-editor of the Journal of 9/11 Studies, Kevin Ryan, offers an evidence-based analysis of nineteen other suspects.

Although a number of books have demonstrated that the official accounts are false, Another Nineteen takes the next, crucial step toward a new investigation into the crimes of 9/11. With the support of victim's families and leading 9/11 researchers, Ryan examines nineteen suspects who were in position to accomplish major elements of the crimes that still need to be explained. Detailed evidence is presented that reveals how each of the alternative suspects had the means, motive and opportunity to accomplish one or more aspects of the 9/11 events. In light of a forty-year history of deep events and crimes against democracy, Ryan shows how 9/11 fits into the pattern of a deep state operation, how the alternate suspects worked together throughout that history, how each was connected to two men who were in perfect position to coordinate the attacks, and how these suspects can either be charged with 9/11 crimes today or further investigated in focused ways.

9/11 War Games

Little did we know at the time, 9/11 was not a normal day of blue sky aviation. On the contrary, it was one of the busiest days in the history of American aviation, a dense forest of live fly exercises, drills, simulations, fake radar injects and utter confusion. And that was before the attacks even began. This is the story of 9/11 that you didn’t watch unfold on your TV that fateful day in 2001. This is the story of the 9/11 War Games. Please go here for transcript, links and more.

Remembering 9/11 – 2,974 WTC Murders

(Updated 16 Sept 2017. Please go here for the International Bureau of Forensic Investigations cold case investigation of the 9/11 murders.) Similar to the day President Kennedy was murdered, I remember where I was and what I was doing when the World Trade Center Towers the other five WTC buildings were destroyed, 11 Sept 2001, don’t you?

I turned the TV on that morning to see if there was some reason why my Internet connection had suddenly frozen up. Perhaps, I speculated, someone had demolished the Comcast cable somewhere close by.

Instead of a car accident, I learned that the one of the WTC towers was on fire. I didn’t know it then, but our world had changed again, once more in a very bad way.

In shock, I suspect, after seeing several people jump from the WTC, I later accepted our government’s explanation of the collapse of the impossibly huge buildings. After all, I’d seen it all on TV, hadn’t I?

Never, for a second, did I question where the mammoth tons and tons of rubble went that day - the steel and the building contents. Nor did I question why they fell so quickly and without damaging the building close by. -more-

Cold Case Findings
On 11 September 2001, 2,974 people were murdered in New York City. At the Pentagon, Washington, D.C. and on flights 77 and 93, 224 innocent people were murdered. To this day, these crimes remain unsolved and the perpetrators continue to elude justice. -more-

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Let’s Think This Through

Walter Reuther, left, and Richard Frankensteen, after being beaten bloody by Ford Motor Company's anti-union thugs at the "Battle of the Overpass," an incident depicted in the new documentary Brothers on the Line. (Wayne State University Reuther Library Archives) 
Most of us know it is time for a major change — that it is time for our nation to apply our vast resources toward serving the interests of our people; to move toward a ‘Peace” economy and away from a “Continuous War” economy; to emphasize people over profit; to establish a balance between corporate interests and the welfare of all the people; and, toward protection from our current “Predatory Capitalistic” system.

Unfortunately, this realization is not a new thing. People have come to that conclusion from time immemorial.

And, in their time, countless heroes have given their lives trying to move the ball an inch or two forward toward obtaining “Natural Rights”, those our nation’s founders called, “unalienable rights”. You no doubt recognize this declaration: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”.

Back then, a few rich white guys convinced enough of the “Joe-&-Jane-lunch-bucket” colonists to fight a revolution against King George. For various reasons the revolution succeeded and the rich guys got a lot; the Joe & Jane workers got some potential and a chance to dream sbout making the bigtime like the rich guys, otherwise known as, the “American Dream”.

Fast forward a few hundred years and, we, the American Joes & Janes, the 99.9%, are still trying to dream that American Dream. Our ancestors did make some progress in their time. They paid the price in blood, achieving things that we take for granted, among them:

  • Eight-hour work days
  • Child labor laws
  • 40-hour work week
  • Vacation time
  • Sick time
  • Minimum wage
  • The Right to Vote

What about that “Pursuit of Happiness” thing?

Well, on this Labor Day, 2018, it is obvious that it's going to take a lot more than dreaming to find our chance at happiness.

Still, we can dream. Can’t we?

The Collapse of the Middle Class and the Rise of a New 'Precariat', Robert Scheer, Truthdig, 31 Aug 2018. Robert Scheer interview of Alissa Quart, Squeezed: The High Price of the American Family.

"And what your book really gets into in a very deep way is self-blame andif you fail–and this is the most powerful, corrupting message this society puts out: if you fail, it’s your fault. And you better go to a self-help group, or you better have a better attitude, or embrace your inner blah blah blah. And the whole idea that maybe the game is rigged–rigged–is, you know, that’s considered radical and negative thinking. And when you mentioned the housing meltdown, the Great Recession, and debt–debt, this incredible debt that people inherited on every level–and the fact, you know, you have to pay so much to go to college now, there wasn’t public money for doing something like free tuition, as Bernie Sanders argued for. There isn’t public money for helping people get job training for the jobs that are needed. There isn’t–there isn’t public money for health care. All the things you say these European societies have, and manage to fund. And what did they do? Under Barack Obama, the great president of hope, they bailed out the banks for destroying the economy. Right? And they didn’t bail out homeowners. They didn’t do anything fundamentally to help homeowners who lost their houses, not through any failure on their part, because the game was rigged by these, basically, thieves on Wall Street. So, I mean, isn’t it really cutting to the chase the issue, are you going to blame yourself, or are you going to blame the system?"

Friday, August 31, 2018

Sen. McCain… Man of Courage

Sen. McCain votes "No".

Occasionally a few Congressional people conjure up courage to do the right thing by the people of the United States. One such moment was when Sen John McCain voted against Republican amendments to destroy “Obamacare”. Just for that moment alone Sen. McCain deserves not only the Congressional Medal of Honor but the everlasting admiration of the people of the USA.


Yet, John McCain was so much more than that one vote. He was a man of courage throughout his life. He will forever be my hero.


Here is why…


Healthcare... No One Left Behind

Sen. John McCain stood tall once again last night. The man who refused to leave his comrades behind came through for the people of the United States. *

He is my hero.

Despite Donald Trump’s diatribes and ridicule. Despite the president’s minion’s continuous threats to withdraw federal funding from the people of Arizona, Sen. John McCain remained true to his love for his country, his wisdom, his own healthcare challenges and, yes, his honor.

Duty. Honor. Country. These words really do mean everything.

When it comes down to the hard times and our lives depend upon the man casting the vote. Thank God Sen. John McCain found the strength to endure.

He came back to Washington, D.C. He made his vote count.

No one left behind.

I wish John McCain were the President of the United States.

One more thing.

There were two other heroes last night. Sen Susan Collins of Maine and Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska who joined with all 46 of the chamber’s Democrats and independents to defeat the Sen. McConnell’s repeated attempts to deny millions of Americans healthcare. Both senators endured Trumpian tweet tirades of scorn and ridicule, plus his minion’s threats to deny federal funds to the people of their states. Please go here for the whole story.

Photo above: John McCain lies in a hospital bed in Hanoi, North Vietnam, after being taken prisoner of war. (FRANCOIS CHALAIS)

*John McCain spent 5½ years in captivity as a POW in North Vietnam. His first-person account of that harrowing ordeal was published in U.S. News & World Report on in May 14, 1973. Shot down in his Skyhawk dive bomber on Oct. 26, 1967, Navy flier McCain was taken prisoner with fractures in his right leg and both arms. He received minimal care and was kept in wretched conditions that he describes vividly in this U.S. News special report.

Of the many personal accounts coming to light about the almost unbelievably cruel treatment accorded American prisoners of war in Vietnam, none is more dramatic than that of Lieut. Commander John S. McCain III—Navy flier, son of the admiral who commanded the war in the Pacific, and a prisoner who came in "for special attention" during 5½ years of captivity in North Vietnam. Please go here for more.

John McCain EPIC Senate Floor Speech After Health Care Vote - 25 July 2017

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Sen. McCain… Man of Courage & Honor

Congratulations Sen McCain, for the National Constitution Center's Liberty Medal honor.

Thank you, Senator McCain for the man you are. For your courage in the face of overwhelming odds. For your strength. And, for remaining with your fellow POWs at the North Vietnamese Hỏa Lò Prison, known as “The Hanoi Hilton”, until you and your fellow POWs could come home together.

I have no doubt that Col. Richard “Pop” Keirn, USAF, would agree.

Richard Keirn, my mother’s first cousin, was held for 7 years and 7 months in the Hanoi Hilton and came home with Sen McCain.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Courage to Do Right

Colbert To Trump: 'Doing Nothing Is Cowardice'

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
2 Oct 2017

Stephen Colbert commends the victims and first responders of the tragic Las Vegas shooting for their immeasurable courage. Now we need courage from the President of the United States.

Sen. John McCain has the courage to do the right thing. Please take a few minutes to view this video: John McCain Receives the Profile in Courage Award

JFK Library
28 Aug 2008

Senator John McCain's acceptance speech at the May 24, 1999 Profile in Courage Awards.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Thank You, Aretha

Millions are Aretha Franklin fans. I’ve been one since forever.

Back in the 60s, RESPECT was a favorite. Later, in the 80s, "Freeway of Love"... the “Pink Cadillac” song became a hit.

But, most of all Aretha will always be the major star in my heart because of her performance of “Nessun Dorma”, when she sang as a sub for Luciano Pavarotti, and, again for the Pope… that unforgettable performance… the one that brought a little boy to her side on stage.

Thank you, Aretha.

Aretha Franklin, sub for opera great ABC video

Freeway of Love - Aretha Franklin - 1985

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Please, Never Give Up

Activsts walk during the 50 Miles More march in Worcester, Massachusetts, on 23 August.
Photograph: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

While our attention is overwhelmed by U.S. mainstream media reports about Trump associates’ felony convictions, a major story playing out in Massachusetts has gone largely unnoticed.

Thank God for the UK’s, The Guardian.

Why is this important? Each day our youth realize it’s up to them to create a nonviolent, compassionate, life-affirming USA. They haven’t yet lost their dreams and hopes for rational gun regulation.

I hope they never tire, never surrender, never give up.

Here’s the story:

“Activists across Massachusetts came together for the local chapter of 50 Miles More to challenge the arms manufacturer at its Springfield headquarters.”

“Student activists continued to make progress on Friday on a 50-mile march that will bring them to the headquarters of gun manufacturer Smith & Wesson in Springfield, Massachusetts this weekend.”

“The group has two messages it hopes to deliver to Smith & Wesson. First is a request that the company cease the manufacture of weapons outlawed under the 2004 Massachusetts Assault Weapons Ban.”

“Smith & Wesson produces weapons that are illegal in Massachusetts then ships them throughout the country, and those [guns] take peoples’ lives,” Eder said. “That needs to stop.”

“The group would also like to see the company donate $5m to research violence involving its weapons.”

“I hope Smith & Wesson realize they can become a responsible gun manufacturer. They could start making guns with finger print [technology] again, for example.”

“He (David Hogg) and the group have no problem with the second amendment, they all agreed. They simply take issue with how it’s regulated.”

“We don’t have universal background checks; we need to invest in violence intervention programs,” Hogg said. “These shootings don’t just happen in high schools, they happen every day. We need people like the president to realize this is not just Parkland, this is Boston, this is all the different cities that we’re with.”

Asked what he wanted Smith & Wesson to hear when the group arrives on Sunday, Brody said it was “OK to be a gun manufacturer and be against gun violence.

“You can be a part of the solution. If you’re truly who you say you are, you haven’t acted like it. It’s time to step up and be the first gun manufacturer to say you’re against gun violence, and mean it and show it.” 

Bruce Springsteen - No Surrender - 2004

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Demanding Higher Standards

These past few weeks have been a difficult time for me. I'll write about them in the days to come.

But, today, for all my Republican friends... those that no longer talk to me and turn away when they see me... please take a few minutes and view this short video by Chris Cuomo.

Cuomo: We hold kids to higher standard than Trump

Monday, August 6, 2018

Media—Minimize Trump Coverage

How to report Mr. Trump compared to other news.
Please go here for larger PDF image

By Ron Baker

Mr. Trump has declared the media to be the enemy of the people. As I see it, in his recent campaign-style rallies he his further incited his followers to violence against reporters. This is not acceptable by any measure.

World-wide people now clearly see Mr. Trump, his colleagues and their actions are not supportive of the people of the United States. Rather, the Trump administration has gone about gutting our government; obliterating what little protection the people have from the extremes of predatory capitalism; abused the peoples’ trust and lined their pockets, reaching historic levels of corruption; and now, encouraging and permitting on-going subversion of our election process.

Additionally, that the current President of the United States has, repeatedly, incited his followers to violence against his political opponents.

What must be done?

One first step is for the “mainstream press”, the media, to stop being Mr. Trump’s propaganda tools. At the very least, minimize Trump-coverage by not making it the lead story.

I am not suggesting that the media stop reporting the President of the United States and his administration. Rather, I am suggesting that the media make their Trump-coverage less prominent and more in tune with coverage they'd give any other common fraudster or obvious propagandist. (Please see above example or open this PDF.)

Shift the majority of reporting to how Mr. Trump’s comments and actions have touched the lives of readers, views and listeners.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Why Best Buds?

Perhaps you’ve been trying to cipher out why Mr. Trump appears to be so smitten with Mr. Putin.  I have.

So, what’s the deal?

Writer Neil Baron of Salon turns a spotlight on a reasonable answer in his recent article.

“It has nothing to do with politics.”

"Since Trump’s nomination, 70 percent of Trump sales were to limited liability companies frequently used by Russians to hide their identity, stow cash and, most likely, violate U.S. sanctions. Hundreds of millions of dollars from unidentified sources funded Trump’s unprofitable golf courses in Ireland and Scotland. Testimony before Congress suggests they were used to launder money for the Russian mafia. Steve Bannon told Michael Wolff, in speaking of White House corruption: “This is about money laundering … the path to …Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Junior and Jared Kushner.”

"The blackmail potential in all these financial shenanigans is abundant. Implicating Trump in almost any of these schemes could expose him to charges of money laundering and bank fraud."

Money Makes the World Go Round - Liza Minnelli & Joel Gray - Cabaret - 1972

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Jive Talkin' Pres.

Mr. Trump’s off and on and off again declarations of love / hate for our NATO allies have left me feeling even more confused, dizzy and nauseous than his comment usually do.

Taking the cake for blatant, kindergarten-level-BS-jive-talk-fantasy, was his claim that NATO members had acceded to his demands to increase defense spending. They gave in to make him happy, he said, and would soon be spending 2% of their GNP on “defense”.

Mr. Trump’s “jive talkin.” did sparked a thought, though. Was there ever a time when the 99.9% of us didn’t put up with “leaders” and "rulers"?

Astonishingly the answer is, yes. If only we could do it again... the world would be much better off.

“There is a remarkable discovery that has not yet emerged from our renewed interest in ancient civilization. Yet few remark upon this glaring omission from the relics and records we dig up and discover. I first recognized its absence at a visit to the British Museum, and made a point of going back a few years later for another check. Their Mesopotamian rooms begin at 6500 BC, and as you wander through the exhibits and look at the artifacts and depictions of their culture there are none depicting warriors or warfare, chariots or combat, clubs or swords – for nearly four thousand years. As for kings and rulers, there was a single image thought to be a king because it looks like he’s wearing a crown. And what is this king doing? He is feeding flowers to sheep.”

Jive Talkin' - BeeGees - 1975

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Diversity, Assimilation - Both

Except for those of us of Native American heritage, either we or our ancestors came from somewhere else.

Have you maintained your diversity or are you fully assimilated into the USA? Or, both?
Are we a country of immigrants? Are we stronger by both embracing the diversity of our cultures and feeling we belong to one nation?

Elon Musk on American Melting Pot

OME - Prof.Dr. Magala: Salad Bowl (mosaic) or Melting Pot

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

We Know What Works

Diversity works... Mrs. Watson’s Kindergarten Class, Beverly Woods Elementary School,
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, 1984. Back row, third student from left is Amy Hawn Nelson.
We know what works: doin' what's best for you, your children, your community - diversity - challenge your own biases... try Fox News and MSNBC... learning... the other person's side,,, have a coffee with someone who voted for the other guy... learning how to work with someone that's different.

We Know What Works, So Why Aren't We Doing It?: Amy Hawn Nelson at TEDxCharlotteED

TEDx Talks
Published on Mar 15, 2013
When it comes to transforming our schools, we're not lacking for solutions. We actually know what works and what we should be doing. To be successful, however, we need to overcome some non-obvious barriers to how we gather data and insights that inform our policy decisions.

We know what doesn't work, Why do we keep doing it?

Monday, July 9, 2018

Can We Agree on the Basics?

What do you want for your grandkids?
Drinkable water?
A good job – paying enough to live comfortably and build savings?
Home ownership?
Good health?
Nutritious food?

Do only wealthy white people of European descent want these things and more for their grandkids?

Do only wealthy white people deserve to have these things for their grandkids?

As human beings – regardless of our nationality – we all know the answer is: all of us want and deserve these things for our grandkids, regardless of race, ethnicity or religious and political beliefs.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
Can't we agree on that?

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Where is Our FDR?

FDR - Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Sr.  - 1944
The Democrats must bring in the young people and the Progressives or all will be lost to the Trump-Republican-Fascists.

Frankly, I expect them to fail because they will be unable to overcome the .01% who control the party. Those are the same .01% who control the Republican Party. They present themselves through the big money donors and corporate elite – the .01% mega-wealthy.

Because the Democrats can't get it together, the USA of our high school text books will become overtly Fascist within our lifetime.

I am deeply concerned that we are heading for a civil war - Trump people vs. everyone else. Clearly the “everyone else” group does not yet know they are a “group” and are therefore non-aligned, pursuing different goals and utilizing differing tactics to reach their goals. Nor, do they know they are all targets of the Conservative-Republican disinformation apparatus.

Sadly, Democrats have not changed since Will Rogers' time… that brings to mind two of my favorite quotes:

"I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat.” 
“Democrats never agree on anything, that's why they're Democrats. If they agreed with each other, they would be Republicans.” - Will Rogers

Nothing has changed for them. What has changed is that the Republicans have once again descended into Fascism, only this time there appears to be no FDR* on the scene to save the nation from them.

Why have I come to this conclusion about the Republicans? I have attached below some text describing a “conservative” pamphlet, The Left’s Racist War Against Trump & America, by David Horowitz.

In my mind this is scary rhetoric conflating charges of racist, collectivist and totalitarian with the humanistic rights guaranteed under the U.S. Constitution for all people regardless of race, ethnicity, or religious belief.

The Left’s Racist War Against Trump & America
“This information in this booklet is so powerful that it completely discredits the Left both intellectually and morally. Get the political ammo you need to expose the liberal agenda against our nation and our president. In these pages, you'll find proof that:

“The Democratic Party is a racist party – now, still, as it always has been. And it is increasingly collectivist and totalitarian. It also aids and abets the advance of militant Islam, which is supremacist, totalitarian, homophobic, misogynist, anti-Semitic, savagely cruel and  murderous – and totally intolerant of all ideas that are not part of its primitive ideology."

“Black Lives Matter is an overly racist and violent group that is led by avowed communists and has allied itself with Hamas terrorists. It is an organization officially endorsed by the Democratic Party and lavishly funded by tens of millions of dollars contributed by Democratic donors like George Soros."

“An American patriotism – which is precisely not about blood and soil, [and] which is the antithesis of racism and collectivism – is what drives Trump and his presidency. … Patriotism – a specifically American patriotism – is the loyalty that unites us and makes us equal. It is this patriotism with which the political left is at war, and the reason they hate this president and are determined to destroy him."

* Why FDR? Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Sr.  overcame the 1933 right wing attempted coup d'etat, otherwise known as The Wall Street Putsch. FDR saved our nation from the last attempted Republican-Fascist takeover. Please see:

Monday, July 2, 2018

Miraculous Enlightenment

Will the Democratic Party leadership blow it this November and lose our American experiment completely to Trump-Republican-neo-fascism?

My guess is that they will - unless they are blessed with a miraculous enlightenment.

During the past election the Democratic leadership bungled a “sure win” by managing to not expand their base, screwed-up building local organizations, failed to motivate and turn out traditional core Democrats and worked tirelessly to exclude Progressives from the party.

Meanwhile, the Trump-Republicans amassed a formidable machine, in no small way, the result of yeoman-like work gerrymandering, excluding voters of color, restricting registration and voting rights, disenfranchising Democrat-leaning voters, artfully sculpting “alternative” media, and reshaping social media via Big Data manipulation.

The result?

Former Secretary of Labor, Dr. Robert Reich describes itthis way, “Trump controls the Republican Party, the Republican Party controls the House and Senate, and the Senate and Trump will soon control the Supreme Court.” Reich continues, “Republicans also control both chambers in 32 states (33 if you count Nebraska) and 33 governorships. And in many of these states they are entrenching their power by gerrymandering and arranging to suppress votes.”

I’m not trying to second guess the “divine parameters” of God’s epiphany, but, I’ll bet the Boss Leaders will need to adopt some radical moves, among them actively bringing Progressives into the party and supporting candidates that will address the “pocketbook” issues we all care about – housing, education, wages, healthcare – plus, repair all the immense damage done by the Trumpsters.

When it comes to the epiphany business I know things happen in strange and beautiful ways. I hope it happens soon.

O, Canada - Capitol Steps

Capitol Steps

Published on Mar 27, 2016
After Super Tuesday, the most Googled search term was "how to move to Canada."

Musical satire and parody from the Capitol Steps.  We perform every Friday & Saturday at the Reagan Building in Washington, DC.  Visit us at

[From our latest album, "What to Expect When You're Electing,"  available at, iTunes, and Amazon -- plus albums from our first 30+ years!]

Friday, June 29, 2018


Hokus-pokus, now you see it now you don't

Making things go invisible is stuff of Star Trek, magicians (and politicians).

It's not real, right?


"Our work represents a breakthrough in the quest for invisibility cloaking," said José Azaña, National Institute of Scientific Research (INRS), Montréal, Canada. "We have made a target object fully invisible to observation under realistic broadband illumination by propagating the illumination wave through the object with no detectable distortion, exactly as if the object and cloak were not present."

Here's the story...

Spectral cloaking could make objects invisible under realistic conditions, Optical Society of America,, 28 June 2018.

"Researchers and engineers have long sought ways to conceal objects by manipulating how light interacts with them. A new study offers the first demonstration of invisibility cloaking based on the manipulation of the frequency (color) of light waves as they pass through an object, a fundamentally new approach that overcomes critical shortcomings of existing cloaking technologies."

"The approach could be applicable to securing data transmitted over fiber optic lines and also help improve technologies for sensing, telecommunications and information processing, researchers say. The concept, theoretically, could be extended to make 3-D objects invisible from all directions; a significant step in the development of practical invisibility cloaking technologies."

"Most current cloaking devices can fully conceal the object of interest only when the object is illuminated with just one color of light. However, sunlight and most other light sources are broadband, meaning that they contain many colors. The new device, called a spectral invisibility cloak, is designed to completely hide arbitrary objects under broadband illumination."

"The spectral cloak operates by selectively transferring energy from certain colors of the light wave to other colors. After the wave has passed through the object, the device restores the light to its original state. Researchers demonstrate the new approach in Optica, The Optical Society's journal for high impact research."

- more -

Hocus Pocus - I Put A Spell On You - Bette Midler - 1993

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Humane, Less Costly Alternatives Already Exist

The Trump administration has backtracked on its policy but offered no immediate plan
for reuniting families. Photograph: Guillermo Arias/AFP/Getty Images

It’s been a few days since Mr. Trump signed an executive order which, as he proclaimed, stopped separating immigrant children from parents and imprisoning them in concentration camps.

So what is happening? Nothing.

Yesterday, a federal judge ordered the administration to re-unite the children and parents within the next 30 days. But the administration has no plan for re-uniting the children and reports persist that some desperate parents are agreeing to self-deportation in hope - forced to trust that the Trump administration will return their children.

So, here’s my question:

If you knew that more humane, less costly options existed for America to deal with asylum seekers, than taking kids from their parents or locking them up together, would you use it?

My answer is yes, I would.

Why doesn’t Mr. Trump?

“…there’s an alternative approach that’s cheaper, more humane and incredibly effective. The Trump administration just doesn’t want to use it.”

This Alternative To Detaining Immigrant Families Works. Trump Just Won’t Use It, Elise Foley and Jennifer Bendery, Huffington Post, 22 June 2018.

“The way the Trump administration talks about it, you’d think there are only two ways to respond to families crossing into the U.S. illegally: either separate kids from their parents while the adults are tried as criminals or put entire families into indefinite detention.

But there’s an alternative approach that’s cheaper, more humane and incredibly effective. The Trump administration just doesn’t want to use it.

The Family Case Management Program, which President Donald Trump ended several months after taking office, was meant to keep track of immigrant parents and kids in removal proceedings without having to keep them locked up. It was relatively small ? about 950 families in five locations. But it was hugely successful: More than 99 percent of families in the program showed up for their court dates, and 97 percent participated in required check-ins with their case managers, according to a report from Geo Care, the private prison company that operated the program. And it reportedly cost the government just $36 per family each day, versus $319 per bed per day in a family detention center.”

Please go here for the rest of the story.

Eric Clapton - Tears in Heaven live Crossroads - 2013

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Never Surrender ‘Tude

The A&E History Channel Special, Detroit Comeback City airs, Sunday, 1 July, at 9/8c.

When I first arrived in Detroit, courtesy of Eaton Corporation in the mid-1970s, the first structure I saw was the derelict Michigan Central Station -  the Detroit train station. Next, I made a wrong turn and drove around the Masonic Temple area and down the burned-out Cass corridor. To my naive eyes, all of it seemed to be still smoldering from the 1967 riots.

O.K. I must admit it. It was a foggy day. I couldn’t see the Renaissance Center towers and satellite navigation was a military secret. Still, I was shocked, frightened, even, to see that whole area was not yet rebuilt… still totally destroyed. So, I found a phone (no cell phones then) called my boss and said, “I can’t live in this desolated, God forsaken place. I quit. I’m heading back home to Ohio.

Somehow, she talked me out of resigning and going home. I stayed and built a fantastic life and career in Metro Detroit. Thank you, Detroit. You won me over.

It’s taken a while, but, Detroit is nothing like the one I discovered back then. Detroit has overcome the odds and the naysayers.

When people refer to “Detroit Tough”, well, I know that is a true Badge of Honor. It’s a never surrender ‘tude, earned through very tough times by the diverse, multi-national, black, brown, yellow, red and white Detroiters; sparked and led by a critical few wealthy believers; and teamed with civic and municipal leadership that makes Detroit the Comeback City.

Today… Detroit, Metro Detroit, is the right place to be. The A&E History Channel Special, Detroit Comeback City brings you up-to-date. It airs, Sunday, 1 July, at 9/8c. Please go here for a preview.

Freeway Of Love (The Pink Cadillac) - Aretha Franklin - 1984 

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Magic Youth Elixir Inside Us

Fountain of Youth, St Augustine, Florida

For most people, Juan Ponce de León, comes to the mind for searching Florida for the Fountain of Youth. He never found it. Perhaps because, most historians believe that he never went looking for it. The Fountain of Youth search is a myth, they say. Still, he is credited with exploring the interior of Florida and mapping the Florida coast.

Well, a few centuries later researchers at the University of Buffalo weren’t looking for the source of that magic youth elixir either. But they may have found it or at least its best bud… a gene called CD36.

"Scientists seeking to unlock the secrets of cellular aging have identified a gene that triggers senescence, a phenomenon in which cells stop dividing."

"Senescence is a natural occurrence in the life of a cell, and researchers have sought to learn about it for a couple of reasons. First, it’s connected to old age: Senescent cells are thought to contribute to heart disease, arthritis, cataracts and a bevy of other age-linked conditions. Second, a lack of senescence is a hallmark of cancer cells, which bypass this process to replicate in an uncontrolled manner."

"The new study — published online on June 20 in Molecular Omics, a journal of the Royal Society of Chemistry — illuminates genes involved in cellular senescence, and highlights one in particular that seems tightly associated with this crucial biological process."

"In experiments, University at Buffalo researchers discovered that a gene called CD36 is unusually active in older, senescent cells."

“What we found was very surprising,” says Ekin Atilla-Gokcumen, PhD, an assistant professor of chemistry in the UB College of Arts and Sciences. “Senescence is a very complex process, and we didn’t expect that altering expression of one gene could spark it, or cause the same effect in surrounding cells.”

Peter Pan - I Won't Grow Up - Taylor Louderman - 2003

Monday, June 25, 2018

Making America Wealthy-White-Male-Enough Again

I have resisted the fact that the Trump administration is in large part overtly racist, xenophobic, misogynistic and elitist. Now it is clear. Worse, it's also clear that Mr. Trump has little regard for our nation's laws.

Further, it's obvious that Mr. Trump’s greatest strength is white American’s fear of people of color, especially black and brown people.

To remain in power, Mr. Trump is willing to leverage that fear and sacrifice our Democratic Republic in the process.

The challenge of our time comes down to our decision: Are we going to continue to stand idly by while Mr. Trump and his administration disassemble not only our legal system, but our humanity, as well?

I fear we are on a path toward a second Civil War. Sadly, this president is no Abe Lincoln.

Young Abe Lincoln Make A Tall, Tall Man - Johnny Horton - 1973

Friday, June 22, 2018

We Hoped for Compassion

Images Credit: Art, Lady Liberty and Child- Justin Teodoro;
Mrs. Trump - Mandel Ngan via Getty Images, Huffington Post.
Until yesterday I felt sorry for Mrs. Trump. She seemed to want to distance herself from Mr., Trump and his bevy of goons. But after her recent visit to one of Mr. Trump's immigrant children’s centers, I have reluctantly changed my opinion. I had no other choice... because she wore her lack of compassion all over her back.

Fortunately, artist Justin Teodoro expressed my feelings, as well as those of millions of others, in his art. Thank you, Justin.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Swedes Cook Up Steel Plant

Tariffs? Who needs tariffs. We just make stuff in a smarter way... then... Voilà! No need for tariffs!

O.K. So much for the dramatics. Now, here's the real, and serious, story:

Sweden starts construction on fossil fuel-free steel plant,, 20 June 2018.

"Utility firm Vattenfall said Tuesday it has teamed up with steel company SSAB and mining firm LKAB to build the 1.4-billion Swedish krona ($158 million) pilot plant."

"Existing plants produce large amounts of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, when coal is used to turn iron into hardened steel."

"The new factory being built in the northeastern town of Lulea by 2020 will use hydrogen instead of coal and coke. The companies' joint venture, called HYBRIT, aims to have an industrial process in place by 2035."

"Vattenfall said the technology could potentially cut Sweden's total carbon dioxide emissions by ten percent, helping meet the country's goals under the Paris climate accord."

Just for fun...

Pöpcørn | Recipes with The Swedish Chef | The Muppets

"In this special Muppets exclusive, the Swedish Chef shares his recipe for popcorn. In true Swedish Chef fashion though, his process for popcorn, or "Pöpcørn" is no simple task. Instead, he creates a musical masterpiece and somewhat of a mess!"

"The Swedish Chef is the Incomprehensible and hilarious resident chef for the Muppets. The Swedish Chef rose to the top of Muppets’ stardom with his his signature unorthodox utensil, sing-song introduction, use of "Børk" and indecipherable Swedish accent. His famous standout recipes include his stew, popcorn, and swedish meatballs. The Swedish Chef is not afraid to take risks with his cuisine, especially when it means making special meals for the rest of the Muppets cast.  The Swedish Chef also collaborates and competes with some of the world’s most renowned chefs including Gordon Ramsay."

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Sacrificing Children to Pay for Mr. Trump’s Wall

Freedom’s price is high. It respects no national boundary and its fee continues to be paid every day.
Today, babies and children are paying the fee for their parents’ desire to be Americans.
Today and every day into the foreseeable future until Mr. Trump gets the funding for his “Wall”, we, the people of the United States, will permit the Trump administration to separate another 66 kids from their mothers and fathers. They will join some 2,500 already taken from their parents and held in U.S. concentration camps. There is no Trump administration program to restore the children to their parents.
Freedom’s High Price is once again being paid by the innocents… the babies. 
In the United States today: the powerless; the children; the babies are always on the short end of the stick.
The real question is whether the rest of us are willing to surrender our souls and squander our national heritage to let it continue that way.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Plants Fess Up - New Type Photosynthesis Discovered

Guess what’s new?

Plants have been holdin’ out on us for years and years.

Yes. It’s a fact.

Plants have two ways to make convert light. Previously, they had let us in on only one type of photosynthesis.

What buggers! (Who knows. Maybe they have more secrets, too!)

Here’s the story:

“The discovery changes our understanding of the basic mechanism of photosynthesis and should rewrite the textbooks.”

“It will also tailor the way we hunt for alien life and provide insights into how we could engineer more efficient crops that take advantage of longer wavelengths of light.”

“The discovery, published today in Science, was led by Imperial College London, supported by the BBSRC, and involved groups from the ANU in Canberra, the CNRS in Paris and Saclay and the CNR in Milan.”

“The vast majority of life on Earth uses visible red light in the process of photosynthesis, but the new type uses near-infrared light instead. It was detected in a wide range of cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) when they grow in near-infrared light, found in shaded conditions like bacterial mats in Yellowstone and in beach rock in Australia.”

“As scientists have now discovered, it also occurs in a cupboard fitted with infrared LEDs in Imperial College London.”

Mary Lambert - Secrets (Official) - 2014