Friday, August 7, 2015

Don't Read This ... Nothing to See Here ...

The Fall 2015 Fox replacement for the popular show "American Idol" is the GOP Debate series. It is spectacle and theater that even has some of my left of center friends talking about "if you had to, which of them would you vote for?"

Of course the debates are entertaining. Laugh In was funny, Saturday Night Live -occasionally funny. Curb Your Enthusiasm? -always funny. However to think any of the candidates offered by the party working to destroy the hard fought gains in civil rights, voting rights and women's rights; promotes a foreign policy equivalent to "Let them hate us as long as they fear us" -a policy of perpetual war (paid for in blood by our poor and working class -and in future generations of indebtedness) -while ensuring that everyone has a gun or assault rifle would be acceptable as President is irreconcilable and irresponsible.

Nevertheless -it is a spectacle -and it is successfully distracting us. The real issues as I see them are

  • The Iran Nuclear Agreement (which will avoid yet another long, protracted war in the Middle East -and all of the horror that manifest in war -for generations).
  • The growing inequality between those that have and those that don't in America stemming from tax and economic policy from the disastrous Reagan administration.
  • The regressive attack on women's rights, racial justice and voting rights. 
  • The attacks on our environment (Keystone XL, the Gulf Coast has a dead zone from the BP catastrophe, the negligence by All American Plains leading to the pipeline disaster in central California and now Shell is on their way to destroy the Arctic). 
  • Attacks on environmental protection and regulation.
  • Attacks on Unions and the middle class.
  • The war on education and intellectual capability. 
  • Ignorance-fueled discrimination against people by those hiding behind "religious liberty" as a means to hate.
  • The attacks on tax fairness that subvert a progressive tax system such that the wealthy and corporations legally avoid their responsibility to America.

The spectacle IS American Idol's Fall season replacement on Fox.

Let's not forget for a moment what is really going on -and what is really at stake. It is well past time for all of us to unite and demand that "We the People" not the Koch brothers, the NRA's, the extreme fundamentalists of any faith, the Exxons, Chevrons or "Defense" industry are represented by our Government. Our Government is not separate from us -it is an extension of our civic engagement, voting -and carefully monitoring our elected officials so they are in fact representing the best interests of American society -not a particular party or of the wealthiest Americans.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Climate Denial -Response to an Opinion called "Unsettled", Newport NewsTimes, August 5, 2015

Response to an Opinion called "Unsettled", Newport NewsTimes, August 5, 2015

We are very grateful to Rep. Gomberg and Senator Roblan for their leadership -and to the 2015 Oregon State Legislature overall in this past session. While Mr. Folkers note appears fittingly in the "Opinion" section -I do hope the NewTimes will follow with at least 97 peer-reviewed articles written by Climatologists that have not been paid by Big Oil or Koch front groups to deceive the American public about climate change.
I'm not sure where SB941 (Background checks for gun sales) fits into an opinion about climate change -however every responsible gun owner (and law enforcement representative) I know would prefer to keep guns out of the hands of the emotionally disturbed, people with restraining orders and convicted felons. While legislation certainly provides no guarantee -it makes access to guns more challenging. When it is more difficult to obtain and possess a weapon -gun related crimes drop significantly -all around the world. This is statistical fact.
Climate change is not a political issue at all. Based upon his disrespectful statement about former VP Al Gore it is clear to me that Mr. Folkers has been deceived into believing that it is. Rigorously collected trending data from NASA and the Climatic Research Units -two of the most trusted entities on climate research positively connect the dangerous trending rise in planetary surface temperature. This is accelerating rapid, readily observed decrease in Arctic sea ice and permafrost and leading to unprecedented climate events around the world.
One of the climate "deniers" cited in Mr. Folkers' Big Oil marketing piece is a chemist, not a climatologist. There is no doubt Leslie Woodcock is smart and well-educated man. However if you have a heart ailment and 97 heart specialists told you that you needed a procedure in order to live -and a proctologist told you it wasn't necessary -what would you do? Personally, I'd have the recommended heart procedure, wouldn’t you?
Mr. Folkers further misinterpreted physicist John Cook -either willfully or due to ignorance -and in either case irresponsibly. Studies by Naomi Oreskes and later by John Cook clearly conclude that that there is a 97.1% consensus among peer-reviewed climatologists that climate change is real.  (
Climate denial -which has led to public confusion and inaction is an absolute threat to our existence -and that is why the term now has a very negative connotation. Vast amounts of money have been expended by the Koch brothers, Big Oil, Coal and Fracking industry  -as there is significant revenue and profit to be made (without regard to environmental damage or societal risk). The delay in taking profound action provides additional opportunity to derive record quarterly profit –while putting all of our lives, our children’s lives and generations yet to come at risk.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

"Things Go Better With Koch" announces GOP

Not a real Press Release ... or is it? 

For Immediate Release:
Wichita, Kansas - August 1, 2015 - Koch Fertilizer LLC, a division of Koch Industries is a market leading provider of well, you know has completed its acquisition of the Republican Party (GOP).

With this acquisition Koch Fertilizer strengthens its leadership position as a global provider that delivers powerful and effective excrement to the rapidly growing market of working poor and poor in America and around the world. This will also streamline accounting operations -no longer will Koch Industries need to funnel massive amounts of funding through nefarious front-groups in order to buy members of Congress or State and Local government. 

"We think this will provide an excellent opportunity to gain access to all of the funds in the social security system while completely eliminating pesky labor unions." said a Koch spokesperson.

Post-closing -Koch will control the U.S. House of Representatives, State Legislatures in Kansas, Wisconsin, Texas, Florida, Ohio, Arizona and the deep South.

About Koch
Koch Industries are a world leader in subversion of democracy, destroying the environment, obfuscation of climate change to delay critically-needed action and own more elected officials and candidates than any competitor. They are also widely recognized as instrumental in continuing Ronald Reagan’s work with regard to the evisceration of labor unions.

About the Republican Party(GOP)
The GOP is recognized as a leader in implementing policy that has allowed the consolidation of wealth and power to the obscenely wealthy through lower tax rates, the work to eliminate capital gains and estate taxes and the preferential treatment of trillions of dollars shifted to offshore banks by their donors. They have been instrumental in limiting women’s rights, invading the wrong countries, destroying the public education system and making higher education unaffordable. They have also helped eliminate American jobs by creating incentives to shift them overseas; are working to keep women, our elderly and people of color from voting; continue to obstruct efforts to address climate change; advocate for discrimination based upon not being a christian white male; work closely with the NRA to ensure that even (white) people with severe mental health issues can be heavily armed and pass laws such as “Stand Your Ground” allowing white people to shoot people of color because of a hoodie.

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