In the aftermath of the Citizens United ruling now harnessed with the Santa Clara decision of 1876, (the corporate abasement of the 14th Amendment) our last free election was witness to billions of corporate dollars spent to anonymously and secretly “educate” low information voters. Broad appeals to thinly disguised bigotry were used effectively in swing states and voter suppression tactics reached their zenith prior to the elections, especially in Brownshirt states.
It was, effectively, the last national election.
I think a great many of us were stunned to find Justice Roberts being the key person in upholding the Affordable Care Act last week. Regardless of the wording in his opinion, whether it’s a Commerce Clause thing, a tax or even a dessert topping, the main thing is the ACA survived a direct frontal assault from the dark side. Praise be for that!
One thing sticks, however. We know the law as it stands needs improvement. Even once all measures of the Act become law in 2014, a vast swath of Americans will still be left vulnerable to the caprices of private healthcare insurance and many will still not be fully protected.
With that in mind, I remembered one of the provisions originally offered when the ACA was wending its way through committees a few years ago. It was spoken of quietly and the press seemed to sleep right through it.
So what I have to say isn’t original, but exhumed from fading memories of what seemed a wonderful idea. I choose to expound and modify that idea below.
As you gaze at the sea of brake lights ahead of you, I thought you might like to enjoy a different perspective on what started traffic problems, why they are what they are and why they will continue, (at least until we run out of energy!)
Over on Democratic Underground was a report about how Romney's bus tour mysteriously avoided going to towns in the upper Midwest where Bain Capital, (Vultures are Us) had a hand in systematically ruining people's lives and livelihoods. The initial report originated from the Nation Magazine's John Nichols.
Of course, I wouldn't want to go somewhere to meet/greet and speechify if I were associated with a corporation closing down viable US concerns and outsourcing them to Communist China. Just doesn't make for good copy on CNN if things go south.
But Freeport? That's personal. I drew my first breath in that town and have loved it every moment of my life.
Last week we got to see the government try to explain why the Affordable Healthcare Act was constitutional. Every day we hear the calls from the right to balance a budget they themselves unbalanced. Now that the charismatic Santorum fellow has suspended his campaign, there's no one left to help strap the dog to the car Romney spend his money into the convention. For shame. The war on women is gaining a fever pitch, leaving unaddressed what really is important. I'm sure the world is in awe of our ability to manufacture shit out of the whole clothe. It shouldn't be a big surprise. Fully 30% od our electorate would elect W again if they could. There's the ignorance factor for you! And now, new voices are emerging, quetioning the basic good of higher education in an economy that only needs degrees for Things That Matter, like science and engineering. But wait, the sahibs in India are pissed because we're cutting down on the amount of visas for Indians to come in and take those jobs too. They're appealing to the WTO as of today. Jump with me as we search for sanity.
We bought my soon to be 2 year old grand daughter a tricycle off Amazon. It arrived today and old Papa here took it to the workbench to assemble. It's about the same Radio Flyer that I got for my daughter back in the early 1980s.
Except...Radio Flyer is now made in China. Why? And what does this have to do with OWS, the 99%, capitalism, outsourcing and our lack of a political system that refuses to look out for the electorate?
I'm sure you can tie it all in without jumping below the squiggle for my take, but it is the weekend, so my post won't distract too much from the more important weekday posts from the big people in the movements.
My inspiration for political belief for decades is a man who was a Federal prisoner who decried our involvement in the Great War. He was a third party candidate for President as he sat in a cell in Atlanta. Previously, he stopped the rail barons dead in their tracks and in effect idled commerce in this country until the White House called out the National Guard to break his fledgling union. His Brotherhood embraced the concepts of Socialism as espoused by this modest self effacing man, one the greatest overlooked leaders of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Here are a few quotes, as true today as they were before Orville and Wilbur had ever forsaken gravity.
“The Republican and Democratic parties, or, to be more exact, the Republican-Democratic party, represent the capitalist class in the class struggle. They are the political wings of the capitalist system and such differences as arise between them relate to spoils and not to principles.”
“With either of those parties in power one thing is always certain and that is that the capitalist class is in the saddle and the working class under the saddle.”
-Eugene V. Debs
In thrall as I have always been of this gentle man, this gentleman and the hope he came to represent to millions of Americans in grinding poverty, I tried to imagine what speech he would give today to a Sunday afternoon assemblage in a shady park. Of course Mr. Debs was loquacious to a fault at times, so in the interests of bandwidth, I’ve tried to keep “his” remarks short.
Just read over at Huffpo that Boehner thinks the retirement age should be raised to age 70. It's funny how there are all these proposals ensuring the future "solvency" of Social Security, but none of them include ones that would truly address the percieved problems.
Why, because those with the means would be given the opportunity to contribute more generously. For some reason, those ideas aren't real popular with captains of industry, those saddled with inherited wealth and those that continue to profit trading CDOs or short selling.
The issue currently being trumpeted by the mainstream press is state sponsored racism. Add a leavening of Kentucky crackpot Rand Paul, and you’d think that everyone’s lost their minds. But it’s the accepted framing of the problem that begets an inaccurate solution. It’s a constant shell game our corporate masters, the Chamber of Commerce and others play to keep most of us looking at the tree directly ahead and not the forest of related ills that must be addressed simultaneously.
The health care bill is returning to the House, as directed by the parliamentarian.
Democratic Underground diarist Kpete has cited an interesting article, although obscure, emanating from the NYTimes here which does seem to have Obama caving to the hospital industry in regards Medicare rates included in the public option provisions.
If this is in fact a truthful representation of the negotiations occurring last summer, it would go a long way towards the President's non-comittal stance and lacklustre leadership when it comes to promoting the electorate's prime demand in healthcare.
Over at Huffpo, the banner induces one to believe that the President intends to put more of our citizens in harm’s way in Afghanistan. What does he know that we don’t that would induce him to escalate an already unpopular police action?