Archive for February 18, 2011

Obama Kisses the Ass of Potential Silicone Valley Corporate Donors

This is President Obama having dinner last night in Silicon Valley with some of the people who own and run the world:

Per the White House’s official announcement, the guest were:

  • John Doerr, partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
  • Carol Bartz, president and CEO, Yahoo!
  • John Chambers, CEO and chairman, Cisco Systems
  • Dick Costolo, CEO, Twitter
  • Larry Ellison, co-founder and CEO, Oracle
  • Reed Hastings, CEO, NetFlix
  • John Hennessy, president, Stanford University
  • Steve Jobs, chairman and CEO, Apple
  • Art Levinson, chairman and former CEO, Genentech
  • Eric Schmidt, chairman and CEO, Google
  • Steve Westly, managing partner and founder, Westly Group
  • Mark Zuckerberg, founder, president and CEO, Facebook

The White House also released this statement, trying to mute the corportocracy-ness of the thing:

The meeting is a part of our ongoing dialogue with the business community on how we can work together to win the future, strengthen our economy, support entrepreneurship, increasing our exports, and get the American people back to work. The President and the business leaders will discuss our shared goal of promoting American innovation, and discuss his commitment to new investments in research and development, education and clean energy.”

Yeah.  Right.

I could string my last 20 posts together and paint a picture of Republicans and Democrats playing to the powers that be, despite the fact that they’re supposed to represent We the People.

Tragically, that ain’t the way this country, or the world, works anymore.

February 18, 2011 at 9:46 PM Leave a comment

Arrogant D.C.’ers: Walk on This Knee For a Lifetime

I have a 62-year-old friend who has been a letter carrier for decades.

He underwent surgery yesterday to replace one of his knees.

(Image via.)

I suggested he send his old knee — blood, cartilage and all — to Washington — to the people who want to extend the retirement age to 70-something.

Maybe they can use it — after they’ve walked 100,000 miles on the job.

February 18, 2011 at 9:14 PM Leave a comment

Scott Walker – Owned by the Koch Brothers

This is the most popular hit on Facebook tonight — you may have seen it — but in an effort to spread the word, check out:  Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker — Funded by the Koch Brothers.

Walker’s owned by two old billionaire trust fund kids

who inherited their money from daddy and never worked a day in their life.

This is all about protecting their wealth folks and if you want to protest against union workers, they’ll be happy you did.

February 18, 2011 at 8:54 PM Leave a comment

7 Billion People on Our Planet

Take a sec and check out this interactive National Geographic map about what’s going on with our planet insofar as it’s loaded with 7 billion people.

There’s lots of suffering there, and it’s only going to get worse.

While the conflicts going on in Bahrain and Madison are hugely significant, they pale in comparison to the gigantic global issues we face over water and food shortages, climate change and over population.

I love my darling 2-1/2 year old neighbor Noah but I fear for what his life will be like when he’s 30, 40 or 50 years old.

Here’s a screenshot from the first page.

Eight years after I was born, the world population was 3 billion:

 

February 18, 2011 at 8:26 PM Leave a comment

Make the Supreme Court Answer to Ethics Laws

Why isn’t the Supreme Court subject to ethics laws? How did “they” rig the system so they weren’t?  The common thought, apparently, was that Supreme Court justices were so honorable, pure and good they could be trusted.

Wish it were so:

The Code of Conduct for United States Judges provides that in almost all circumstances, “a judge should not personally participate in fund-raising activities.” Yet, because the Justices of the Supreme Court have exempted themselves from this Code, conservative Justices Scalia, Thomas and Alito have all participated in high-dollar fundraisers for right-wing political causes. In response to this unethical — but technically legal — conduct by these three justices, Rep. Chris Murphy (D-CT) is pushing a bill that would end the Supreme Court’s immunity to federal ethics laws:

After learning about outrageous actions by Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia, Congressman Chris Murphy (CT-5) is working on legislation to end conflicts of interest at the nation’s highest court.  In the midst of the Citizens United case, Thomas and Scalia were hosted by the infamous Koch brothers, who funded many of the attacks ads this fall, at lavish retreats intended to discuss their radical agenda and plot political strategy on issues like the Citizens United case. . . .

Murphy’s bill will:

  • apply the Judicial Conference’s Code of Conduct, which applies to all other federal judges, to Supreme Court justices.  This would allow the public to access more timely and detailed information when an outside group wants to have a justice participate in a conference, such as the funders of the conference;
  • require the justices to simply publicly disclose their reasoning behind a recusal when they withdraw from a case;
  • require the Court to develop a process for parties to a case before the Court to request a decision from the Court, or a panel of the Court, regarding the potential conflict of interest of a particular Justice.

Murphy’s bill would make Scalia, Thomas and Alito’s fundraising activities unambiguously illegal. Yet, while ending the justices’ ethics immunity would be an important step towards restoring the wall between the Supreme Court and partisan politics, there is some reason to fear that the three conservatives would simply flout the law.

[…]

…Justice Alito has simply dismissed his own profligate right-wing fundraising as “not important.”

The partisan actions of these wingnut justices have destroyed the notion that the Supreme Court is impartial which is absolutely essential.  We all must trust we can go before the Court and receive a fair hearing.

Please support Rep. Murphy’s bill.

February 18, 2011 at 7:45 PM Leave a comment

Peaceful Protesters in Bahrain Shot in Cold Blood

(Via.)

The United States gave Bahrain $19 million for weaponry in 2010.  Bahrain wants $19.45 million this year.

We probably paid for that tank and those bullets.  You know, to “spread democracy around the world.”

February 18, 2011 at 6:44 PM Leave a comment

My Favorite Wisconsin Protest Sign

(Via.)

February 18, 2011 at 5:53 PM Leave a comment

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