Saturday, October 31, 2015

Republican Halloween

Only in reality the top 1% isn't random but self-selected in a corrupt system that buys those doling out the candy. And they definitely aren't sharing.

Tell NBC to dump Trump on SNL

The petition is here. If they really think he's the bigot he is, and he most certainly is, then don't have him on SNL. My sense is their ratings, which equals money, is far more important.

Faith in Public Life on new speaker Ryan

Faith in Public Life reminds us just what the new Speaker of the House is all about: using faith to prop up his heinous budget proposals, when said faith does no such thing according to these faithful.

“If Rep. Ryan thinks a budget that takes food and healthcare away from millions of vulnerable people upholds Catholic values, then he also probably believes Jesus was a Tea Partier who lectured the poor to stop being so lazy and work harder. This budget turns centuries of Catholic social teaching on its head. These Catholic leaders and many Catholics in the pews are tired of faith being misused to bless an immoral agenda. Simply put, this budget is morally indefensible and betrays Catholic principles of solidarity, just taxation and a commitment to the common good. A budget that turns its back on the hungry, the elderly and the sick while giving more tax breaks to the wealthiest few can’t be justified in Christian terms.”

Conscious, ethical purchasing

Here's just one example of why we should chose alternative food purchases based not solely on price. While not every low-cost food source employs slaves like these chocolate companies, many are involved in a whole network of unfair labor practices, low wages and environmental costs just to provide a low-cost product. We do need to take that into account when we purchase things.

Reality check for regressives

The facts on the top two Republican liars for President. Further confirmation that they, and their constituency, are living in a fantasy bubble devoid of reality.

Facts about the Post Office

And the most important fact is that the PO is being intentionally sabotaged by regressive Congresspeople placing a 75-year retirement surplus fund upon it. This is a burden that NO other business or government agency has, with the express purpose of it going under so as to shift business to the for-profit mail services. Take that bullshit burden away and the PO is doing just fine. The regressives just hate public service organizations because they don't make any money on it and it actually helps people, God forbid.

Third Way Democrats

Hartmann discusses these corporate democrats who fear Sanders, and the majority of American people who Sanders represents. Which corporodems know that Clinton's moves in Sanders' direction are only rhetoric to win votes from this majority because she is on the Third Way payroll. (Not incidentally, this Third Way is very much akin to so-called integral Third Way politics via conscious capitalism.)

Lazy liberalism

It's the last of Maher's new rules this week, for those liberals who are busy telling others what is offensive while doing nothing to change matters as if the bitching was enough.

Friday, October 30, 2015


Here's the website of this employee-owned grocery chain.

Brazen liars

Following up on the last post, this article explores some of the lies the regressives told in the last 'debate.' And when caught in a lie, instead of trying to explain or clarify their position, they just act like children and go "I am not wrong" and blame the moderators for asking legitimate questions. And their moron constituency applaud? Fucking wow.

Colbert lampoons the Republican debate

And their victim mentality over the media asking them legitimate questions.

Arnsperger on economics as religious endeavor

Continuing on the Korten theme below, I'm reminded of integral economist Arnsperger's comments here:

"I think we need to go as far as saying that economic thought has a strictly spiritual root.... The economy is, therefore, less a technical-operational domain than an existential-spiritual one.... Economics, part and parcel of theology—not only neo-liberal economics (as some left-wing critics claim, using the word 'theology' as a degrading term), but all of economics to the extent that it ultimately seeks to liberate Man. Marx, Keynes, and Hayek were, literally, the most influential theologians of the 20th century; I say this not by analogy or as an image, but as a literal description of what their study of economic activity was about."

Drug test who exactly?

Facebook freaks out

in typical capitalist fashion to competition. No, free enterprise has nothing to do with capitalism. The former encourages competition to make the best products at the best price. The latter has to do with monopoly power. See this article. An excerpt:

"Let's 'Face' it. In today's tech landscape, there's no bigger dog on the block than Facebook. "King Mark" has built an empire so rich and so vast that if he thinks your little startup is going to cause him problems, he simply buys you out for more money than you, or your grandkids, or their grandkids, will ever need. Problem solved. But, what if you're not for sale? What in the world does King Mark do if you have something really great, that has millions of users around the globe buzzing about its potential as being a "game-changer," and he can't have it? Simple. He blocks you. [...] That's exactly what's happening to over 4.5 million users of - a Facebook with a conscience , whose founders believe users should be compensated for the content they create. That's so important, it's worth mentioning twice. Users should be compensated for the content they create."

Korten video

Referenced in the last post:

Change the Story, Change the Future

Two different reading groups at my local UU church are now focusing on Korten. In one we're reading Change the Story, Change the Future, in another we're discussing the video below. One of Balder's concerns in this and the FB forum is that some of us turn every discussion into capitalism. But as Korten notes, capitalism is a religious matter because it is the defining and organizing story of our culture. It so permeates every discussion of any domain because of its dominant yet unconscious big picture worldview. Recall LP's very similar definition of religion.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

In need of a greedy bastard


Sanders get it, Clinton does not

See this Reich FB post for the video. He said:

"Wall Street's 5 biggest banks had 25 percent of America's bank assets before the "too-big-to-fail" bailout of 2008. Now they have 44 percent -- making them far, far too big to fail. What to do? (1) They need to be broken up. (2) The Glass-Steagall Act that used to separate investment from commercial banking (and which Bill Clinton and congressional Republicans repealed in 1999) must be resurrected. And (3) a small transaction tax should be placed on every financial deal. Bernie gets all this. Hillary doesn't (at least, not yet)."

Korin's haunting performance

Such a soft, tender, sensitive and finely unique talent.

This is what passes for Republican logic

Reminds me of Trump whining that his daddy only gave him a million dollars to get set up in life. Poor baby.

Ben Carson is a lunatic

And he's the Republican front runner? Must mean those supporters are also lunatics. Here's a sampling of the crazy things he says. See the link for details. The bullet points follow. I'd ask "can you believe this?" but apparently a lot of regressives do.

Women who get abortions are like slaveholders 

Obamacare is the worst thing since slavery

‘Hitler’ could happen in the U.S. today

Regressives don't give a shit about you

Now that Ryan is Speaker of the House

They'll try to implement their agenda, this being but one of many items that decimate the poor and the elderly. And this video isn't hyperbole either.

Team Nightmare

This was a superb team dance, also deserving of the perfect score.

Bindi & Derek

Dance of the night with a perfect score, the only one of the evening for an individual. Bindi has been the most consistently high scorer in the competition and will likely win this season.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Techne precedes episteme

Continuing from this post, Bryant continues on the theme of folds in this recent post with reference to knowledge. He denounces epistemological foundationalism and the thing in itself. But this one is paramount: "Techne always precedes episteme and not the reverse, and that it is always on the basis of a praxis that any theoria can be produced at all." It is by an embodied enactment and folding between the subject and its field (aka suobject) that we come to know anything at all.

Robert Reich on Sanders, Clinton and the big banks

See the interview here. An interesting excerpt:

Mic: Clinton has called for more regulation of Wall Street, oversight of shadow banks and additional fees. Sanders has gone further, calling for big banks to be broken up and the Glass-Steagall Act to be revived. Who do you think has the right idea in that policy domain?

RR: As I've written about in several columns and essays, we need to break up the big banks, and also resurrect the Glass-Steagall Act. Doing one without the other won't avoid a Too Big to Fail catastrophe.

Mika reams Hillary over the false sexism meme

So Hillary's team thought it would be good to promote that Sanders is calling her a shouting witch. When if fact Sander's shouting expression has nothing to do with Hillary personally. Mika calls this play pathetic and that's exactly what it is.

The real welfare queens

And you want to give more tax breaks to the real leaches and cut social safety nets? And believe that they are the "job creators" when in fact they ship jobs overseas, or if they stay here they dole out poverty minimum wages? If you've fallen for that spin then sorry, you're an idiot.

Trump is your drunk neighbor

This video uses actual Trump clips and it does sound like your drunk neighbor bragging a lot but saying nothing. And that's why so many idiot Americans respond to him like they did with Dubya Bush. They think he's the kind of regular guy they can have a beer with, get drunk with, who talks on their level. That might be fine for a drunk neighbor but not for President of the US. Certainly we should have a somewhat higher standard for that?

Cool gif

Saving Capitalism

I just finished reading Robert Reich's latest, Saving Capitalism for the Many, not the Few. He talks of a time when capitalism worked in the US, when there were countervailing forces like trade associations and unions to balance the capitalists. When there was a healthy middle class, where there was less income inequality and more and better social safety nets. He thinks because it used to be that it can be again if we but stand up and fight for our rights.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The evidence is in

Remember that guy who raised the minimum wage in his company to $70,000 annually? See this story for the results of that move. Profits have doubled, revenues are rising at twice the previous rate, customer retention and productivity are up. The article also has research that this is the norm for raising minimum wages and completely refutes the regressive Republican talking points based not in fact but ideology.

The real sharing economy

See this article. Instead of being like Uber, owned by capitalists for their own profit, alternatives in the real sharing economy share ownership. While they use the new tech that is not the savior; "what matters is how people organize around it." The "on-demand" economies like Uber could give a shit about anything but their bottom line, while a true sharing economy works to ensure each stakeholder has an equitable share, including the environment. It's two entirely different takes on how to use the tech, one capitalist and one platform cooperativism.

A comment on plitology

Continuing from this post:

A few things stand out relating to previous posts in the thread. The boundary of a suobject both divides and unites in that while it has autonomy it is always connected to the field outside it. Hence while a dyad it is not a unity or duality, not one, not two; not so much an ontology as a plitology. Also it is a relationship between the virtual and the actual, so that even the virtual is not a timeless essence, while the actual is not a strictly material reduction. All of which is "the folding of their difference," aka differance, khora and the objet (fuckin) a.

Sanders continues to contrast with Clinton

He's keeping up the fight to distinguish himself from Clinton, a good strategy recommended by many. His latest point is that leadership matters, and he's led on issues like climate change, marriage equality and trade for a long time, while Clinton has only recently come over to that side. This adds weight to the argument that Sanders is genuine on these issues and Clinton is just pandering for votes.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Of folds and plitology

From this recent Bryant blog post. Here is an excerpt of interest to this thread:

"The minimal unit of being is the fold.  The minimal unit of being is not the things, not the object, but the dyad; the dyad between thing and field. [...] The fold is a thought of continuity.  That which is folded, the thing, is continuous with the field out of which it is folded.  Where object-oriented philosophy proclaimed an independence of all relation, a discrete conception of being composed of units, pli-tology speaks of an interiorization of a field in the formation of a fold that is both continuous with the field out of which it is folded, yet distinct from it.  Folding, of course, is an activity, a verb.

Chuck Todd auditions for Fox News

Todd again frames questions that question both the Democrats on the Benghazi committee and Clinton's answers. The witch hunt committee made a fool of itself with the Republican questions and Clinton's calm, assured and accurate answers. So now Todd has to carry their banner still. Cummings here shows how much of a hack regressive partisan Todd, and MSNBC, are.

It's about time Sanders took off the gloves

See this article, where he draws sharp contrasts with Clinton, and calls her on changing her story with the change in the wind. He's always been against the TPP; Clinton was for it before she was against it. He's always been against the Keystone Pipeline; Clinton was for it before she was against it. He was always for marriage equality; Clinton against shifted with the polls. He needs to key drawing these accurate distinctions, that's he's always fought for we the people while Clinton is just giving lip service.

Bill Gates on socialism

See this article on Gates and renewable energy. Some excerpts:

"Gates admitted that the private sector is too selfish and inefficient to do the work on its own, and that mitigating climate change would be impossible without the help of government research and development. [...] Government R&D is far more effective and efficient than anything the private sector could do."

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Paul Mason on the future of capitalism

Some highlights:
*Capitalism has dominated for 500 years, now it is broken beyond repair.
*The third industrial revolution is NOT: low paying jobs, Uber, or creating hipster coffee chains. *45% of all jobs today will be made obsolete by technology within 30 years
*Moving forward means replacing work with machines in a jobless future
*The correct price for Information goods is zero, all corporate strategy today is about preventing that, 1) by creating artificial bottlenecks 2) getting government to prevent this with IPR and threats of prison, etc.
*IPR will have to cut back for the next industrial revolution to take place
*We need to re-design our institutions to move forward, only government policy can do that.

Saturday, October 24, 2015


Put this out front on Halloween to scare the shit out of everyone.

Fake nice people are the real assholes

See this article. As an authentic assholon I fully concur.

Hartmann destroys WSJ's Reaganism

We must return to the socialist policies and programs of Eisenhower. And flush trickle-down down the toilet where it belongs.

Goodbye middle class

Because such evidence proves the lie of their ideology. So instead of facing that cognitive dissonance they punish the working poor claiming it's their own damned fault. Sick indeed.

What I'm going through

Paul Ryan won't give up family time

to be Speaker of the House. While commendable, he won't grant that to the rest of us. See Robert Reich on this and as follows:

"Paul Ryan has made a condition of his taking the House Speakership that he get enough time with his family, including three school-age kids. “I cannot and will not give up my family time," he says. I commend him for his dedication to work-life balance (years ago I left Bill Clinton’s cabinet because I didn’t have enough time to spend with my then teenage sons). But I wish Ryan felt other Americans deserved the same. Members of Congress have paid sick leave, but Ryan has repeatedly voted against legislation to give federal employees paid parental leave. And he and his fellow Republicans have blocked legislation that would provide all workers with paid maternity leave and paid sick leave. Ryan’s 2014 budget would have cut federal funding for child care subsidies for low-income families.

Altitude sickness

In this FB post Mark Schmanko inquires into developmental assumptions and wonders if there are other dimensions that curtail them, one being health/sickness. I recommended Mark Edwards' Ph.D. dissertation because not only does he include a multitude of lenses beside the developmental, but also gives an example of how a fixation on the latter can lead to altitude sickness.

Sanders on the transformation of the USA

It's gonna take we the people, not just Sanders, to get off our couches and do something about it. See Sanders speak on this here.

Friday, October 23, 2015

What happens when you're not a bigot

Where Reagan agrees with Sanders

You won't see THIS on Fox "News."
Posted by Occupy Democrats on Friday, October 23, 2015

Petition to make RNC reimburse us for the Benghazi hearing

See this from the Daily Kos. This witch-hunt of a committee, which found nothing new from previous committees that found no wrongdoing, must pay us the taxpayers back for its purely political purpose of trying to smear Clinton. It's also against the law, so support Representative Grayson's ethics complaint to investigate and prosecute this committee.

And none of it sticks

Stating the obvious

Is Teal the New Black?

Continuing from this post, Michel linked to the above named article. It's an in-depth criticism of Federic Laloux's book Reinventing Organizations. It explores many of the presuppositions of white privilege inherent to developmental worldviews, which by the way has no scientific basis whatsoever.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Free enterprise and capitalism

See this from Thom Hartmann. People often confuse these two as if they're the same thing but they are not. Free enterprise is about people running business and exchanging goods, services and money. Capitalism is about those with capital investing it in businesses either directly or via stock. Free enterprise can get along fine without capitalism, like with co-ops. Capitalists will though sell free enterprise as if it is the same thing to mislead people with pipe dreams of Americana small business while they steal your investments and your life.

Comments on teal organizations

Following up on this post, some comments from that FB thread follow:

Me: Actually the neo-Commons is more than socio-economics; it's an AQAL affair covering all the bases, itself a 'level' in all the zones.

Bruce: True this ~ but it doesn't spend any time whatsoever classifying self as such! ...which is the tar baby of the *integral* clan...

Me: As Gidley has said, some just enact integrality, others have to classify it. And it's not necessarily the same animal.

Michel: that's a very astute remark Bruce .. anyone who feels the need to call themselves 'integral' or teal as an individual characteristic, is probably one of the surest signs that it ain't.  p2p is emancipatory integral as opposed to reactionary integral, i.e. attempts to recreate a new hierarchy based on perceived or claimed states of consciousness ; following Wilber we could call it 'subtle hierarchism'

Me: I noted in this Ning IPS post the following, which links to the Gidley citation:

Senator Warren as usual nails it

Bauwens on teal organizations

See his FB post. By 'teal' I think he means the color-coding used by Ken Wilber for an 'integral' level of development. Bauwens said:

"I find the concept of teal organizations fundamentally flawed, elitist and dangerous, i.e. socially racist. Instead of creating new exclusionary and hierarchical organizations, I think we should focus on creating equipotential organizations. So here's a list for a equipotential organization that is aligned to the commons:

Be a proud progressive if you want to win

Following up on this post, see Hartmann on being true to one's progressive values if you want to win elections. A few excerpts:

"There is a lesson here for American liberals if they care to listen. And that’s the fact that they should never, ever, ever, tack to the right to win elections. Doing so is a surefire way to actually lose elections, as Canada’s NDP found out the hard way on Monday.

"American Democrats should know the feeling. In last year’s midterms a good number of Democrats ran away from president Obama and his accomplishments and tried to pass themselves off as Republican-lite. Remember Allison Lundergan Grimes running ads on TV saying that she disagreed with Obama?

Wednesday, October 21, 2015


I got the idea from this IPS thread on the Lingam's new program, Full Spectrum Mindfulness. Eric started joking about Full Rectum Mindfulness with a plethora of shit jokes so I thought of the holonicolonic. The holonicolonic works like kundalini practice. It starts at the base chakra (anus) and pushes water and waste back up the entire ailimentary tract, all the way into the nasal cavity and then into the brain. And voila, shit for brains.

Minority Report

I just watched the pilot of this new tv series, a sequel to the earlier film, both based on PK Dick's short story. The pre-cog unit has been dismantled, the pre-cogs went into hiding and now they are grown up. But one, Dash, is still haunted by visions of incipient murders and needs to do something about it. I liked it and it looks to be a good one so I'll keep watching.

From one vanishing breed to another

Denmark vs. the US

See this article for the details. The bullet points follow.

1. Denmark’s unemployed workers get 90 percent of their old salary for 2  years.

2. Denmark spends far less on healthcare than the US.

3.  Denmark is the happiest country on Earth.

The truth about income tax rates

Robert Reich as usual defeats bullshit regressive taking points on tax rates. The actual percentage the rich pay on their income is far lower that what the working poor pay when all taxes are considered including loopholes and subsidies.

The Pros opening number

This is what the show is really about. These are many of the best pro dancers on the planet. Mandy Moore choreographs this, as well as most of the pro performances.

Bindi & Derek

The third perfect score of the evening. This one brought some nostalgic tears to my eyes for the original in Dirty Dancing.

Tamar & Val

Another of the perfect score and Tamar is back from a bad performance last week.

Andy & Allison

Three couples got perfect scores on Monday night, including this couple. To me this is the best of the bunch.

Reformist or authoritarian populism?

See Robert Reich's FB post on this. He breaks down the causes of why the majority in the US are raging against politics as usual, which takes the form of support for Sanders or Trump. The former inspires a reformist populism of the people, the latter the authoritarian great leader syndrome.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Rifkin excerpt

From his latest HuffPo post:

"The Earth's ecosystems cannot readjust to a disruptive change in the planet's water cycle in such a brief moment in time and are under increasing stress, with some on the verge of collapse. The destabilization of ecosystem dynamics around the world has now pushed the biosphere into the sixth extinction event of the past 450 million years of life on Earth. In each of the five previous extinctions, Earth's climate reached a critical tipping point, throwing the ecosystems into a positive feedback loop, leading to a quick wipeout of the planet's biodiversity. On average, it took upward of 10 million years to recover the lost biodiversity. Biologists tell us that we could see the extinction of half the Earth's species by the end of the current century, resulting in a barren new era that could last for millions of years. James Hansen, the former head of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, forecasts a rise in the Earth's temperature of 4 degrees Celsius between now and the turn of the century -- and with it, the end of human civilization as we've come to know it. The only hope, according to Hansen, is to reduce the current concentration of carbon in the atmosphere from 400 ppm to 350 ppm or less."

Kudos to my home town

Krugman on Denmark

See this article.

"The Danes get a lot of things right, and in so doing refute just about everything U.S. conservatives say about economics.[...] Denmark maintains a welfare state — a set of government programs designed to provide economic security — that is beyond the wildest dreams of American liberals. Denmark provides universal health care; college education is free, and students receive a stipend; day care is heavily subsidized. Overall, working-age families receive more than three times as much aid, as a share of G.D.P., as their U.S. counterparts. To pay for these programs, Denmark collects a lot of taxes. The top income tax rate is 60.3 percent; there’s also a 25 percent national sales tax. Overall, Denmark’s tax take is almost half of national income, compared with 25 percent in the United States."

The liberals win big in Canada

See this article on the election. It's interesting that in Canada the social democrats felt they had to move more to the right, while the liberals move more to the left and won. Let this be a lesson in the US, where Dems like Clinton are more right than liberals like Sanders. Sticking strongly to ones most progressive values and not capitulating to conservatism is rewarded. Also recall this. I strongly hope we in the US have the same result in our upcoming '16 elections.

Sanders as democratic socialist-capitalist?

See this article. Some excerpts:

"The weirdest thing about this fight is that Mr. Sanders, a Vermont senator, is not really a socialist. Or at least, if he is a socialist, he is also, at the same time, a capitalist. [...]Mr. Sanders does not want to nationalize the steel mills or the auto companies or even the banks. Like Mrs. Clinton, he believes in a mixed economy, where capitalist institutions are mediated through taxes and regulation. He just wants more taxes and more regulation than Mrs. Clinton does."

“'It’s not socialism, it’s social democracy, which is a big difference,' said Mike Konczal, an economic policy expert at the left-wing Roosevelt Institute. Social democracy, Mr. Konczal noted, 'implies a very active role for capitalism in the framework.'”

Monday, October 19, 2015

Hartmann on Sanders & American democratic socialism

Following up on this post, Thom Hartmann also supports Sanders and agrees the latter needs to point to America's own highly successful democratic socialist programs, rather than always going to Scandinavia first for examples.

Gowdy caught lying in Benghazi hearing

See this story. Gowdy claimed that one of Clinton's emails revealed the identity of a CIA agent. Yet the CIA said no such thing occurred. And that in fact Gowdy tampered with the email to make it appear that sensitive information was redacted which is not at all the case. Yes, we need Congressional investigations, but into Gowdy and this partisan witch hunt of a committee.

Recap of historical eras

From the archive discussing chapter 16 of Rifkin's book, The Zero Marginal Cost Society.

Chapter 16 is a recap of the historical eras. In forager/hunter societies our empathic drive was limited to one's family and tribe in mythological consciousness. We then moved into agricultural civilization where empathy was extended to one's religious family in theological consciousness. Next up was a steam-powered civilization that extended our empathy to those in our nation states and an ideological consciousness. Next was mass electrification and an extension of empathy to larger associations based on cultural, professional and technical affiliation via psychological consciousness. And now we are entering the commons via the internet and emerging IoT, our empathy extending to all humanity as well as the environment via biospheric consciousness.

He notes that all of the above still exist in each of us with different emphases as well as culturally is various degrees depending on context. There are also regressions and progressions depending on a variety of factors. But overall there is an unmistakable trajectory of greater empathetic embrace. And this is not some transcendent, ever-more abstract worldview detached from our basic empathetic connections. Empathy is what keeps us grounded in this body and this world as we acknowledge that this life is finite and we all die.

Earth Endangered by New Strain of Fact-Resistant Humans

This satire (just barely) by Andy Borowitz deserves repost here in full:

MINNEAPOLIS (The Borowitz Report) – Scientists have discovered a powerful new strain of fact-resistant humans who are threatening the ability of Earth to sustain life, a sobering new study reports. The research, conducted by the University of Minnesota, identifies a virulent strain of humans who are virtually immune to any form of verifiable knowledge, leaving scientists at a loss as to how to combat them.

“These humans appear to have all the faculties necessary to receive and process information,” Davis Logsdon, one of the scientists who contributed to the study, said. “And yet, somehow, they have developed defenses that, for all intents and purposes, have rendered those faculties totally inactive.”
More worryingly, Logsdon said, “As facts have multiplied, their defenses against those facts have only grown more powerful.”

Capitalism and religion

Some oldies from the archives inspired by Oprah's new series, Belief. It goes to Opra's credibility on the inquiry in question, as she is the most blind and willing proponent of capitalism as religion via nonsense like The Secret. So the notion that top-down religion is over coming from her is ludicrous at best.  Opra is mixing and matching religion and economics via The Secret much as did the Calvinists. Only she is blind to it and thereby unconsciously promoting what she is nominally against in more obvious 'religion.' E.g. see this Ning IPS post: 

Recall that Max Weber was an instrumental source for kennilingus. See this post where I referenced Rifkin's use of Weber's analysis of the rise of capitalism. Then see this SparkNote on Weber's book The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism. A few brief excerpts from the summary:

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Larry David as Bernie Sanders

On SNL last night.

Quote of the day

"As long as the general population is passive, apathetic, diverted to consumerism or hatred of the vulnerable, then the powerful can do as they please, and those who survive will be left to contemplate the outcome." --Noam Chomsky

Saturday, October 17, 2015

The Pope on idolatry

Applies to the paranoid gun nuts

How much $ is generated by raising taxes on the rich?

In the Sanders interview below Maher asks him how is he going to pay for his suggested programs. Sanders tells him. Also see this article, which provides good estimates of how much revenue is raised by raising taxes on different classes of the rich. It is enough to cover the sort of social programs we need, and it is morally right that the top pay back to a society that gave them so much.

Maher on sexual repression and obsession

His latest New Rules follows. The last one is on this topic.

Maher interviews Sanders last night

Maher said: "I want to help your campaign, I want to see you get the nomination, I want to see you be President." So first up was how can Sanders rehabilitate the socialist label attached to him, since that label is not popular with the majority of Americans. Maher gave him a good debate on it when Sanders went into his usual explanations, which Maher thinks are not good enough.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Chomsky on Sanders

In this article he sees Sanders moving the Democratic agenda in progressive directions and being a thorn in Clinton's side, but unlikely to gain much traction in our current oligarchy. In this interview Chomsky says even if Sanders won he'd be alone without supporting Fed and State reps and executives. That he would need a broad people's movement to get involved to vote in such support and hold leaders' feet to the fire. But that is exactly what the Sanders campaign is all about.

If you want a woman President

Another key difference between Sanders and Clinton

See this article. During the debate Clinton emphasized what would change if she won. Sanders kept saying if we win. This is a huuuuuge (a la Trump) difference. Clinton is still caught in the old school capitalist individualism where great leaders must be in charge. Sanders is from the emerging Commons paradigm where autonomous individuals coordinate and organize to govern together. This is going to take a mass movement of we the people to vote for representatives that enact democracy, and for us to hold them accountable to the people's platform. Governmental 'leaders' are public servants, not the lapdogs of the oligarchs. Sanders understands this and is a people's candidate. Clinton does not and is going to keep the oligarchs in power. Which, btw, is the transition from capitalism to the commons, from individual liberty to autonomous individuals working for the common good, from post/modernity to an integral age.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

International Energy Agency report on renewables

See this recent report for the details. This is why it is critical for progressives to win a majority in the next US election if we're ever going to literally save the planet. Our extinction is a very real and present danger if they do not. Some highlights:

"Renewable energy will represent the largest single source of electricity growth over the next five years, driven by falling costs and aggressive expansion in emerging economies, the IEA said Friday in an annual market report. Pointing to the great promise renewables hold for affordably mitigating climate change and enhancing energy security, the report warns governments to reduce policy uncertainties that are acting as brakes on greater deployment."

"Renewable electricity additions over the next five years will top 700 gigawatts (GW) – more than twice Japan’s current installed power capacity. They will account for almost two-thirds of net additions to global power capacity – that is, the amount of new capacity that is added, minus scheduled retirements of existing power plants. Non-hydro sources such as wind and solar photovoltaic panels (solar PV) will represent nearly half of the total global power capacity increase."

The Bible shows its anglo bias

And that it was not written nor populated by middle easterners in a middle eastern setting.

Sanders & Clinton on capitalism

From the debate last Tuesday when Sanders was asked about socialism and capitalism. What Clinton doesn't get is that the sort of capitalism she wants, small business, is being bought out by big business, which is exactly as Sanders describes. Plus Sanders' democratic socialism is just a kinder, gentler capitalism where everyone plays by the same rules for the benefit of all. Big business does not to abide by those rules while small business does.

BERNIE SANDERS: Do I consider myself part of the casino capitalist process by which so few have so much and so many have so little, by which Wall Street's greed and recklessness wrecked this economy? No, I don't.

HILLARY CLINTON: Let me follow up on that, Anderson. When I think about capitalism, I think about all the small businesses that were started because we have the opportunity and the freedom in our country for people to do that and make a good living for themselves and their families. I don't think we should confuse what we have to do every so often in America, which is save capitalism from itself.

BERNIE: Everybody is in agreement. We are a great entrepreneurial nation. We have to encourage that. Of course, we have to support small and medium-size businesses. But you can have all of the growth that you want, and it doesn't mean anything if all of the new income and wealth is going to the top 1 percent.

TPP text leaked

The following is from Please take action by signing the petition and donating if you can spare it. Thanks.

Last week, WikiLeaks released the final text of the TPP’s intellectual property rights chapter and it is absolutely terrifying.
These are just a few of its most dangerous pieces:
  • Compel ISPs to take down websites without any sort of court order, just like SOPA. (Appendix Section I)
  • Extend the US’s copyright regime to require copyrights stand for life plus 70 years, preventing anyone from using works that belong in the public domain. (Article QQ.G.6)
  • Criminalize whistleblowing by extending trade secrets laws without any mandatory exemptions for whistleblowers or investigative journalists. (QQ.H.8)
  • End anonymity online by forcing every domain name to be associated with a real name and address. (Article QQ.C.12)
  • Make it illegal to unlock, modify, or generally tinker with a device you own. (Article QQ.G.10)
  • Export the US’s broken copyright policies to the rest of the world without expanding any of the free speech protections, like fair use. (Article QQ.G.17)
The worst part is that this is just one of the TPP’s 30 chapters.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

538 still thinks Sanders has only a slim chance

After last nights debate. See it here. Only a 13% chance of winning the nomination, Clinton at 77%. Some of the comments follow. The first agrees with me on the gun issue.

hjenten: Can I note that the harshest attack of the night came from Clinton? It was on guns against Sanders. That, to me, suggests Sanders isn’t going to go after Clinton in the way he would need to in order to win.

faraic: Yes, Sanders’ gun retorts didn’t come across as sufficient to the tragedies of the day. If he was going to offer a rationale for his position, it needed more of a perspective than just that he represents rural voters.

hjenten: He did a nice job on “black lives matter,” but that gun answer was flat out awful.

natesilver: The gun answer was WTF bad.

They think Sanders will continue to influence the agenda, but unless he fights back against Clinton his chances diminish dramatically.

Sanders on democratic socialism & capitalism

Here's where he's strongest. Cooper frames the question that one can't possibly win as a socialist and if one is against capitalism. Sanders sets him straight and in the process educates the rest of us.

Debate gun clip

Here's where Sanders lost to Clinton on the gun issue. He did vote against the Brady Bill and he did vote against holding gun manufacturers liable.

Sanders won the debate

See this article, which cites numerous polls from a variety of sources. Sanders was the clear winner by significant majorities of those who responded. For me personally, I thought he stumbled a bit on the gun issue and foreign policy, but won decisively on his usual strong points, income inequality and climate change.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Obamacare beats regressive predictions again

No surprise in this new study. Instead of the regressive doomsday predictions, Obamacare is actually creating new jobs and the economy runs more efficiently than the previous system. And it insures a lot more people that need it. I know, the regressives won't accept these facts but there they are for those of you not broken to the point of paranoid delusion.

Bernanke ditches his Republican Party

See this article. He was Bush's Federal Reserve Chairman. Now in his memoir he can no longer tolerate the extremism that has overtaken his beloved Party.

It’s the stupid economics.…[they] saw inflation where it did not exist and, when the official data did not bear out their predictions, invoked conspiracy theories. They denied that monetary or fiscal policy could support job growth, while still working to direct federal spending to their own districts. They advocated discredited monetary systems, like the gold standard. [...] I tried to listen carefully and accept thoughtful criticisms…But it seemed to me that the crisis had helped to radicalize large parts of the Republican Party. [...] I lost patience with Republicans’ susceptibility to the know-nothing-ism of the far right. I didn’t leave the Republican Party. I felt that the party left me.”

Sweden has a 6-hour work day

See this article. Turns out it's more efficient because there's less stress, turnover and more productivity than the 8-hour work day. Plus workers are happier because they have more of a life outside of work. Studies show that those on an 8-hour shift don't work that many hours anyway, usually taking at least an hour, ofttimes more, for their personal stuff anyway. Yep, that's democratic socialism for you.

Key difference between Sanders & Clinton

See Robert Reich's article for the details. An edited excerpt:

"Giant Wall Street banks continue to threaten the wellbeing of millions of Americans, but what to do?
Bernie Sanders says break them up and resurrect the Glass-Steagall Act that once separated investment from commercial banking. Hillary Clinton says charge them a bit more and oversee them more carefully. [...] Wall Street is on the road to another crisis. [...] Hillary Clinton’s proposals would only invite more dilution and finagle. The only way to contain the Street’s excesses is with reforms so big, bold, and public they can’t be watered down – busting up the biggest banks and resurrecting Glass-Steagall."


See their website.

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Sanders on capitalism

He's sick and tired of being questioned about being a democratic socialist. He said in last weekend's Meet the Press:

"When one of your Republican colleagues gets on the show, do you say, 'Are you a capitalist?' Have you ever referred to them as capitalists?"

The answer is of course no, no one ever asks that question. It's taken for granted that capitalism is the accepted and normal thing for one to be, while socialism is somehow evil. It's an inherent societal and media bias that is never even questioned when it needs to be. And that question needs to be asked and have adherents defend it, for it is the main problem in our culture.

Carlos & Lindsay

Second best of the night with 39 out of 40.

Alexa & Derek

The first perfect score of the season.

Transforming Cities, Changing the System

The Next System Project's current newsletter is here. Part of it is the video below:

Monday, October 12, 2015

Nick Barkanic

This one reminds me of Nick from Hazleton.

Ellison endorses Sanders

Recall this post. Now Ellison, the other co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, endorses Sanders.

I don't know it for a fact

I just know it's true. This is Maher's new segment in honor of how Republicans believe the most outrageous nonsense without any facts to support it.

Just dance

Following up on the last post, my favorite anthem in this regard.

Dance as a way of knowing (and being)

As a dancer I strongly relate to this one. The blurb:

Be it rhythmic or shuffling, athletic or pedestrian, erotic or just social, dance is an art form that utilizes movement of the body through space. Could the aesthetic experience of being physically present and embodied in the world be considered a way of knowing? Is there something in particular we can come to know by watching or performing dance? And are there broader lessons that dance can teach us about human perception and action? John and Ken hit the floor with Alva Noƫ from UC Berkeley, author of "Strange Tools: Art and Human Nature."

Saturday, October 10, 2015

And regressives go after the poor & ignore this?

They want to cut social security, Medicare and food stamps and yet they don't do a damned thing about this. WTF is wrong with those assholes?

"The 500 largest US companies are sitting on more than $2.1 trillion in overseas cash hoards, allowing them to avoid paying an estimated $620 billion in US taxes if the funds were repatriated, according to a new report by the progressive Center for Tax Justice and the US Public Interest Research Group Education Fund."

Warren: the American people or the NRA?

Senate Republicans refuse to pass even the most minimal, sensible gun legislation. So Warren gives them a simple choice. And we know which one they've always chosen and will continue to do so. They do not give a flying fuck about the 7 children dying each day from gun violence.

Gluten intolerance

Whether you're actually, medically gluten intolerant--and that's a very small percentage of people--you too can be intolerant of anyone who eats gluten under the guise of caring about their health.