Healthcare has passed and the GOP is pissed

 Politics & Government  Comments Off on Healthcare has passed and the GOP is pissed
Mar 222010

And so it begins…. is now redirecting to this:

Are there any constructive ideas coming from today’s GOP party? Any? Are there any alternative proposals? Is there anything that the GOP is offering to do for the people other than spit on the opposition, spread hate, vandalize Democratic representative offices and spout general bull shit lies?

Let’s all step back and look at this from 10, 20 or even 50 years out…

Whether you are D, R, I, G, or whatever political party, Obama has sealed his legacy as a President of importance to the nation of Americans. He’s brought back the economy from the brink of collapse, started to wind down 2 wars, returned international respect by the rest of the world powers and has now passed historic legislation to improve the health and financial well being of millions of Americans. Historians will not care how the legislation was passed but that the Democrats and Obama were able to do it for the people in the year 2010. Whether it stays intact, remains to be scene but this is a historic positive to be attributed to a president.

However, the questions still remain. Does anyone really know what was passed or needs to be reconciled? No, of course not – who has time to actually read sources; certainly not politicians, bloggers, Fox or protesters. I found a very good breakdown from the NY Times on each step that’s being proposed. I’ve read through most of this and even I can say I’m not satisfied with all the proposals (mandates, taxes, and how will the insurance firms respond to the increases they’ll have to pay are some of them) but I’m happy to see something come to resolution. Ted Kennedy is proud.

Maybe the people we hired to run our government (all the GOP and those Dems that voted NO) can CONTINUE to turn inward and throw up a big enough mirror to the GOP to show that their efforts are not contributing to a better society. The GOP is in fact creating this:

Is this the type of leadership they would like us all to believe they stand for? I surely hope not.

The Top Ten Immediate Benefits You’ll Get When Health Care Reform Passes

 Politics & Government  Comments Off on The Top Ten Immediate Benefits You’ll Get When Health Care Reform Passes
Mar 162010

As soon as health care passes, the American people will see immediate benefits. The legislation will:

  • Prohibit pre-existing condition exclusions for children in all new plans;
  • Provide immediate access to insurance for uninsured Americans who are uninsured because of a pre-existing condition through a temporary high-risk pool;
  • Prohibit dropping people from coverage when they get sick in all individual plans;
  • Lower seniors prescription drug prices by beginning to close the donut hole;
  • Offer tax credits to small businesses to purchase coverage;
  • Eliminate lifetime limits and restrictive annual limits on benefits in all plans;
  • Require plans to cover an enrollee’s dependent children until age 26;
  • Require new plans to cover preventive services and immunizations without cost-sharing;
  • Ensure consumers have access to an effective internal and external appeals process to appeal new insurance plan decisions;
  • Require premium rebates to enrollees from insurers with high administrative expenditures and require public disclosure of the percent of premiums applied to overhead costs.

I’m not seeing listed is Rush Limbaugh leaving the country…. but these all benefit the country and the well being of the American people… even if it’s not the perfect bill (no such thing), get some positive out of this year long process.

Robin Hood is a Socialist

 Politics & Government  Comments Off on Robin Hood is a Socialist
Feb 122010

Ah wonderful… The wingnuts have found another characterchure to link Obama with and this time an Englishman. Only I don’t know if they fully understand (again) the implications of the link.

Robin Hood, as the legend goes, robbed from the filthy rich and gave to the poor which was generally thought to be a good thing for all the “working” man and “black collar” people out there (riff on blacksmith? no?). Robin Hood was the Hero of the day!

The Tea party peeps have seen through this scam, and they don’t want any of that dirty rich people money (that they paid for through taxes). Right my fellow Englishman! Check out the new campaign Bill Nighy appears in for the English Robin Hood Tax.

Yeah it will never work right? The elitist minority of the Rothschilds, Morgans and Rockerfellers will fund the masses to block it. More socialism….

Even if the banks were to pump £100 billion back into the economy it would wipe out the national debt, fund every major service and ultimately lead to a reduction in the need to tax the citizens. Of course if the citizens have more expendable income in their pockets, they may pay off their debt quicker, get liquid faster, and would have no need for credit cards or loans. That might just fuck over the Banking industry that much more!

Fuck, I just circled my own argument. Ah well, life in debt servitude is just much safer… At least then I have a master to report to daily…

Check out this band of “Merry Men” cleaning the sidewalks in Bryant Park and giving back to the citizens of New York City. City Parks workers paid by the tax dollars of the citizens who live and visit here.


The Revenge – “Forever In Their Debt”

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

The Aristocrats!

 Politics & Government, Society  Comments Off on The Aristocrats!
Jan 222010

The Senator-elect with an impertinent demeanor has a wife with a curious hand. Gail Huff, Scott Brown’s wife and WCVB Boston reporter is also talented in “slipping a mickey“, naturalist swimming and liberating tubes of lotion as seen in this Digney Fignus video from 1982:

Americans are fascinated with celebrity, how do you think Obama actually got elected right? Which means the Brown family is the perfect fit for the times right now. With a daughter on American Idol (Ayla Brown) and another an award-winning equestrian (Arianna Brown), the Brown family have all the non-political elements to keep an American audience captivated in political theater where facts, values and issues are overrated and shock value alone keeps your name in the headlines.

“Democracy… while it lasts is more bloody than either [aristocracy or monarchy]. Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There is never a democracy that did not commit suicide.”
~ John Adams quotes (American 2nd US President (1797-1801), 1735-1826)

Dems & Coakley are on Vacation While Brown Takes it in Mass.

 Politics & Government  Comments Off on Dems & Coakley are on Vacation While Brown Takes it in Mass.
Jan 202010

Nothing in politics is certain as Hillary Clinton can attest to that, so when you have a candidate UTB’d* by liberal commentators before the election results are in, you know they’ve failed miserably: “from December 19th when Coakley had a 20 point lead, and then January 5th when her lead was cut in half… Coakley was ‘literally on vacation.'” (Nora O’Donnell of MSNBC)

Sen.-elect Scott Brown takes the interim election in Massachusetts to fill the late Senator Kennedy’s seat until 2012. Brown will be the first Republican senator from Massachusetts in 30 years which is a much bigger blow to an opposing party’s politics than when Air Force Capt. and Democrat, Bill Owens defeated businessman Doug Hoffman, the Conservative Party candidate, in upstate NY.

What the Republicans understand well and the Democrats continue to fail historically at, is if you compromise your political positions as Coakley (another Mass. politician, John Kerry is infamous for being associated with flip flopping as well) had done on the abortion and capital punishment issues, then you’ll lose resoundingly regardless of political history in the voting district.

Ted Kennedy just rolled over in his grave as this result now means major complications for any national healthcare reform. Which really makes the entire DNC look even more pathetic than ever. John Stewart says it well when discussing the death of the healthcare bill:

And the reason it will die … [pauses for effect] … Let’s continue … The reason it will die is because if Coakley loses, Democrats will only then have an eighteen-vote majority in the Senate. Which is more than George W. Bush ever had in the Senate, when he did whatever the f*** he wanted to do! In fact, the Democrats have a greater majority than the Republicans have had since 1923! But for Democrats, apparently a majority of 100 is … sixty.

“”What we have in the United States is not so much a health-care system as a disease-care system”
~ Ted Kennedy

Miles Davis – Blue Haze (right-click to download)

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

*UTB – is an acronym for the phrase “Under the Bus”. It’s pronounced as it’s own word (uHt-be) much like such sonar, (created from sound navigation and ranging).

The Financial Bridge to Recovery Doesn’t Include Non-Bankers

 7 Deadly Sins, Politics & Government, Society  Comments Off on The Financial Bridge to Recovery Doesn’t Include Non-Bankers
Jan 142010

On the news that the large wall street banks are set to make record payouts again this year, nearly 18 months after the financial meltdown, most people might have a knee jerk reaction of disgust. Alas, no. We need these captains of industry to keep our engines of capitalism running right!?! Right?

Yeah, right into the ground…

With all this talk of change, new regulation and transparency, the success of these banks has not come as a result of any of these factors so the questions continue to be asked. Why did we even bail out the banks if they recovered so quickly, yet main street is still struggling to right their own ships?

Frank Rich has an excellent piece on the “Weapons of Financial Destruction” which are still in place today, and the same result could very well happen again in the near future.

The economy is not all doom and gloom as John Stewart points out:


JS is right, there aren’t really many songs about banks, but Henry Rollins writes a pretty good one from the view point of the Banker themselves:
Henry Rollins – Liar

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Walk Away From Your Debt!

 Politics & Government  Comments Off on Walk Away From Your Debt!
Jan 102010

This NY Times article hails home owners that are well underwater on their homes, to walk from their mortgage. If the big banks can walk from their debt, why shouldn’t you? Well Henry M. Paulson Jr. declared that “any homeowner who can afford his mortgage payment but chooses to walk away from an underwater property is simply a speculator — and one who is not honoring his obligation.” (Paulson presumably was not so censorious of speculation during his 32-year career at Goldman Sachs.)

Of course this action has serious credit repercussions, but cares to hold onto property that won’t reach it’s paid value for 60+ years. If the banks can liquidate bad debt like tossing out a bubble gum wrapper, why shouldn’t you right! We’re no longer a country of risk anymore. Go ahead and buy that new car, on credit even! You can’t afford it but you really really want it (and have convinced yourself you deserve it too).

Phil Collins – “Take Me Home” (12″ Extended Version)

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


Give me Liberty…

 Politics & Government  Comments Off on Give me Liberty…
Jan 072010

The Liberty Bell, a prominent symbol of the American Revolutionary War, was typically rung to call the Assembly together and to summon people together for special announcements and events such as elections and holidays. The Liberty Bell tolled frequently. Among the more historically important occasions, it tolled when Benjamin Franklin was sent to England to address Colonial grievances, it tolled when King George III ascended to the throne in 1761, and it tolled to call together the people of Philadelphia to discuss the Sugar Act in 1764 and the Stamp Act in 1765.

In October 1777, the British occupied Philadelphia. Weeks earlier all bells, including the Liberty Bell, were removed from the city. It was well understood that, if left, they would likely be melted down and used for cannon. The Liberty Bell was removed from the city and hidden in the floorboards of the Zion Reformed Church in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

The Liberty Bell gained iconic importance when abolitionists in their efforts to put an end to slavery throughout America adopted it as a symbol.

Today the Bell can be viewed at the Liberty Bell Center at Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia, PA, where I took this shot late summer last year.

AC/DC – Hells Bells

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


US History Source

After Pat’s Birthday… again

 Politics & Government  Comments Off on After Pat’s Birthday… again
Nov 062009

kevin & patAfter Pat’s Birthday
Posted originally on Oct 19, 2006
(Photo courtesy of the Tillman Family – Pat Tillman (left) and his brother Kevin stand in front of a Chinook helicopter in Saudi Arabia before their tour of duty as Army Rangers in Iraq in 2003.)

AV’s note: Kevin Tillman joined the Army with his brother Pat in 2002, and they served together in Iraq and Afghanistan. Pat was killed in Afghanistan on April 22, 2004. Kevin, who was discharged in 2005, has written this powerful, must-read document. I realize it’s 3 years after this has been written, but I repost this today because there’s still concerns I have about this country. How the people are managing their own lives and the directions they are encouraging our leaders to go. Read this and ask yourself is this still being tolerated, have we fixed the wrongs of the last administration or are we continuing to perpetuate them…

By Kevin Tillman

It is Pat’s birthday on November 6, and elections are the day after. It gets me thinking about a conversation I had with Pat before we joined the military. He spoke about the risks with signing the papers. How once we committed, we were at the mercy of the American leadership and the American people. How we could be thrown in a direction not of our volition. How fighting as a soldier would leave us without a voice… until we got out.

Much has happened since we handed over our voice:
Somehow we were sent to invade a nation because it was a direct threat to the American people, or to the world, or harbored terrorists, or was involved in the September 11 attacks, or received weapons-grade uranium from Niger, or had mobile weapons labs, or WMD, or had a need to be liberated, or we needed to establish a democracy, or stop an insurgency, or stop a civil war we created that can’t be called a civil war even though it is. Something like that.

Somehow America has become a country that projects everything that it is not and condemns everything that it is.

Somehow our elected leaders were subverting international law and humanity by setting up secret prisons around the world, secretly kidnapping people, secretly holding them indefinitely, secretly not charging them with anything, secretly torturing them. Somehow that overt policy of torture became the fault of a few “bad apples” in the military.

Somehow back at home, support for the soldiers meant having a five-year-old kindergartener scribble a picture with crayons and send it overseas, or slapping stickers on cars, or lobbying Congress for an extra pad in a helmet. It’s interesting that a soldier on his third or fourth tour should care about a drawing from a five-year-old; or a faded sticker on a car as his friends die around him; or an extra pad in a helmet, as if it will protect him when an IED throws his vehicle 50 feet into the air as his body comes apart and his skin melts to the seat.

Somehow the more soldiers that die, the more legitimate the illegal invasion becomes.

Somehow American leadership, whose only credit is lying to its people and illegally invading a nation, has been allowed to steal the courage, virtue and honor of its soldiers on the ground.

Somehow those afraid to fight an illegal invasion decades ago are allowed to send soldiers to die for an illegal invasion they started.

Somehow faking character, virtue and strength is tolerated.

Somehow profiting from tragedy and horror is tolerated.

Somehow the death of tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of people is tolerated.

Somehow subversion of the Bill of Rights and The Constitution is tolerated.

Somehow suspension of Habeas Corpus is supposed to keep this country safe.

Somehow torture is tolerated.

Somehow lying is tolerated.

Somehow reason is being discarded for faith, dogma, and nonsense.

Somehow American leadership managed to create a more dangerous world.

Somehow a narrative is more important than reality.

Somehow America has become a country that projects everything that it is not and condemns everything that it is.

Somehow the most reasonable, trusted and respected country in the world has become one of the most irrational, belligerent, feared, and distrusted countries in the world.

Somehow being politically informed, diligent, and skeptical has been replaced by apathy through active ignorance.

Somehow the same incompetent, narcissistic, virtueless, vacuous, malicious criminals are still in charge of this country.

Somehow this is tolerated.

Somehow nobody is accountable for this.

In a democracy, the policy of the leaders is the policy of the people. So don’t be shocked when our grandkids bury much of this generation as traitors to the nation, to the world and to humanity. Most likely, they will come to know that “somehow” was nurtured by fear, insecurity and indifference, leaving the country vulnerable to unchecked, unchallenged parasites.

Luckily this country is still a democracy. People still have a voice. People still can take action.

It can start after Pat’s birthday.

Brother and Friend of Pat Tillman,
Kevin Tillman