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Archive for March, 2011

Still the lies. US News agencies lie about “violence” in London

March 26, 2011 3 comments

• An estimated 250,000 people joined the TUC anti-cuts march through central London
• The police arrested [b]a total of 9 people[/b], the clashes between police and “activists” had nothing to do with the main demonstration.
• More than a dozen stores on Oxford Street were occupied by UKUncut, as part of a separate but linked demonstration against the cuts, they have nothing to do with the TUC. They targeted Fortnum & Mason who have dodged tens of millions in tax.

The Metropolitan Police press office stated that today’s march has been largely peaceful and well ordered, with a small number of violent disruptions and just nine arrests

The Guardian reported

Matthew Taylor says UKuncut feel misrepresented by media coverage, saying that its occupation was not violent.

I have just spoken to Ukuncut protesters inside Fortnum and Mason and contrary to an earlier report [5:06] there has been no violence and the atmosphere remains positive. They also say that reports that it was a “rogue group” that has occupied Fortnum and Mason are untrue – they are all Ukuncut activists.

Nine arrests, when hundreds of thousands marched.

An entirely separate mob targeted banks and even the Police are reporting that they had nothing to do with the hundreds of thousands who turned up to protest.
So why are American news agencies telling lies about London?

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RIP Geraldine Ferraro

May she be remembered as the first woman on a Presidential ticket.

Yes she did much wrong in 2008 and by giving Faux some semblance of credibility but her life and career should be held in much deeper regard than the mistakes she made over the past two.

She joined the Queens County District Attorney’s Office in 1974, where she headed the new Special Victims Bureau that dealt with sex crimes, child abuse, and domestic violence. She was elected to Congress in 1978, where she rose rapidly in the party hierarchy while focusing on legislation to bring equity for women in the areas of wages, pensions, and retirement plans. In 1984, former Vice President and presidential candidate Walter Mondale selected Ferraro to be his running mate in the upcoming election. In doing so she became the only Italian American to be a major-party national nominee in addition to being the first woman.

A true trail-blazer, without whom there could have been no serious bid for the Presidency of the USA by Hillary Clinton or Palin.

Categories: health, PUMA

200,000+ march in London. This is a REAL Tea Party.

March 26, 2011 1 comment

Compare and contrast the Tea Parties across the Pond.

In America, the right wing became concerned about deficit spending on 20 January 2009. Astro turf groups were set up all over the US to encourage Klan retireees to support an agenda that would deliver no health care for them and higher taxes to pay for tax cuts for billionaires, along with cuts to the very social security system that most of them rely on.

Contrast that with the “Tea Party” now in the UK.

They are not supporting terrorist actions against the government.
They are not calling for the UK equivalent of second amendment solutions if they din’t get their way.
They are not demanding to see the birth certificate of David Cameron.
They are not out demanding tax cuts for billionaires.

They are joining with the Trade Union movement and Government employees to fight and oppose the spending cuts so lovingly called “austerity measures” and so fully supported (supposedly) by their extreme equivalents across the pond.

More than two hundred thousand people are protesting the cuts. Estimates go as high as double that. The police are not reporting numbers.

They are not the “usual suspects” of rioting students or Labour Party activists.

There are people from all Parties, worried about the impact the cuts will have on their local services.

BBC reporter, Mark Easton blogged

A regiment of purposeful Gloucestershire ladies were making their way to a kitchen-table meeting. Over tea from a pot and cakes from a stand, they discussed the arrangements for tomorrow. They are planning to join the protest.

“I’m scared of going on a political march” says Chloe Lees, announcing that she has never been on a demo before.

“I don’t want to be kettled. I refuse to pee in the street whatever the cause.”

Nevertheless, the plans have been made and Chloe will be on a train tomorrow morning with her “Save The Libraries” placard.

“I’m taking my 74-year-old Mum,” says Susan Caudron. “This is the only way to make a difference. Now we really have to get out there and show them how we feel.”

Eighty-five-year-old Eugenie Summerfield adds her voice:

“I’m not fit enough to be there but I’ll be with you in spirit. I’m so angry about what’s happening, not just in Gloucestershire but all over the country. I’ll be with you all the way.”
There is authentic passion in the room. The tea-party in the Cotswolds is not politically motivated, but they have been roused by the threat to the users of familiar and well-loved public services.

What a contrast to the Koch funded lot in America, the only protest group in the World to demand more cuts in government spending (but only when a black guy is in charge).

Why Big Bird Needs And Deserves Your US Tax Dollars

And Why Your Shouldn’t Begrudge Them

As a former journalism teacher, I thought I’d present a little lesson about public broadcasting. It isn’t much different from what I used to present to my students. With yesterday’s vote by House Republicans to defund National Public Radio and Public Broadcasting Systems, it is very important that the public understand just what that means. The reason conservatives want to defund public broadcasting has nothing to do with budgetary concerns. As PBS travel reporter Rick Steves correctly points out, the government spends more money on military marching bands than it does on the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Public broadcasting, including PBS and NPR combined costs about $1.38 per person annually. That money helps support 21,000 jobs, which, in turn, goes directly back into the economy. Rather, it is because the right perceives public broadcasting to have a liberal bias. To some degree, this is true – as Stephen Colbert correctly joked, Read more…

GOP Answer For The Disabled? Ship ’em To Russia

Martin Harty - soon to be one of the people he wants shipped off to Russia.

Okay, next time maybe you’ll actually go out and vote. Because this is what happens when Democrats get complacent and stay home for the midterms. “Let’s just cross our fingers and hope for the best. After all, we got Obama into office, now we can take a break for 4 years, right?”
A New Hampshire state house Republican freshman resigned Monday after he suggested to Sharon Omand, a manager of a community mental health program and a constituent, that the mentally disabled be shipped off to Russia.

“It was a girl that (sic)wanted money for the crazy people, the people … a good percentage of the homeless people are mentally disturbed.” ~ Republican Martin Harty

He claimed, afterward, that he was “joking”. And maybe he was, but in light of fact that the state’s GOP is proposing huge budget cuts that greatly defund programs for the disabled, one has to wonder.

Harty told Omand, that “the world is too populated” and that there are “too many defective people.” When asked what he meant, she said Harty clarified, “You know the mentally ill, the retarded, people with physical disabilities and drug addictions –the defective people society would be better off without.”

There’s a pattern here folks; pay attention. It is always the people with the smallest voice, who are most in need of our community support, that Republicans attack. And why? Because someone has to pay for the loss of revenue caused by the loss of tax cuts for those with strongest voice in government – corporations and the wealthy. And because they are not as smart as they think they are -are, in fact, unable to see a day passed their own self-interest – they don’t even realize that their policies, in the long run, slit their own economic wrists along with the rest of ours’. Taking spending power away from the consuming class topples their cherished free market system from within.

Only 1 Day Left In Fox News Slogan Contest

Just a reminder that, from the time of this writing, there are only about 30 hours left in the New Fox “News” Slogan Contest. The post got tons of views, but only a few entries, so your chances are still pretty darned good to win a cool T-shirt from BanT-Shirts.
Fox is doing its level best to make sure you know that it is a political spin machine and not a real news organization. (Look – here they are on the “No Spin Zone” (More like the “No Truth Zone”) reporting about the violent protestors in Madison, Wisconsin showing a video clip of violent protesters complete with lots of PALM TREES in the background. You are aware of all the palm trees in Wisconsin, aren’t you?) Let’s do our best to help them out with the rebranding by coming up with a glitzy new slogan and tag line. What have you got to lose?
Remember, only you can prevent forest fires.

Categories: Main Blog - General

Why The Dems Should Stay Gone

I could write a book about why what is happening to the public workers in Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, Rhode Island, and other places is wrong. Somebody probably will and make a million dollars. But I’m going to address one point that I have not heard discussed elsewhere. Time.

My mother recently asked me how I felt about what the Democratic Senators in Wisconsin and Indiana are doing. (Hi Mom!) And sometimes, I’m not really able to pinpoint my thoughts about something until I’ve spoken them aloud or written about them. Somehow, between my brain and my mouth they begin to form a cognizant pattern and actually become a rational thought.

My first reaction had been, while I strongly sympathize with the cause, it’s difficult for my to condone the hijacking of the democratic process because one party or the other doesn’t like the dish about to be served. I jump all over conservatives when they hijack the system (and they quite often do, so “Hey right-wingers, stop the hypocritical bull crap.”)

Over and over again we heard during the health care reform debate that it was moving too fast! and no one has even read the bill, and it was shoved “down the throat of the American people.”

However, the necessity of having a quorum present to vote is in state constitutions for a reason. In part, I suspect, for the same reason the filibuster is part of the process as well. Democrats are using the quorum stipulation in order to force the issue into the public arena.

The longer the Democrats stay out of Wisconsin and Indiana, the more the public learns about just what it is the Republican legislators are attempting to do. Not only do they learn more about the bills being voted on, but they learn more about the tactics used to get these bills put to a vote in the first place.

Without this delay, the bill would have passed without the majority of the public in the affected states, much less the nation, being the wiser until it was written into law. Without this delay, the public would not know that the amount Scott Walker is asking from his working class constituents is less than the amount he granted his rich supporters in tax breaks just days before. Without this delay, the public would be none the wiser to the fact that according to Wisconsin’s government accounting office, Walker and his Republican allies have greatly inflated the state’s budget crisis , and did not, in fact, inherit a budget that needed repair. Without this delay, the public would know nothing about the no-bid sales Walker plans to make of the public property utility companies.

So I say “Stay on vacation Democrats! Shine a light on the agenda of the new right wing.”