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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

May 2010 News Factoids


"When Reagan became president [in 1981] manufacturing was 20 percent of G.D.P. Today, manufacturing is 11 percent of G.D.P."
~~ per radio talk show host Thom Hartmann

"In 1965 [when Medicare became law], health care consumed just 6 percent of U.S. economic output; today, the figure is 18 percent."
~~ per New Yorker Magazine, April 2010

"In 1956, 56 percent of profits in the U.S. economy derived from manufacturing, while 8.3 percent came from the financial sector. in 2007, manufacturing produced 10 percent of profits, while the financial sector produced 26 percent of profits." per The Washington Spectator

Minor Factoid: Sales at my Amazon online bookstores dropped sharply in April; I made more that month from the solar panel array in my back yard (after zeroing out my electrical usage) than I did from my websites.

While the 290,000 jobs added to U.S. payrolls in April are a good sign – after all, Dubya's policies were eliminating 500,000 and more jobs each month at the end of his term as President – the problem is that 800,000 new workers enter the U.S, job market each month. While Barack Obama's Stimulus Package has corrected the one statistic, there has not been nearly enough repairs to the economy that was inherited from Bush for anyone to breathe easy.

"The Social Security trust fund is projected to show a surplus of close to $100 billion in 2010 and will remain in the black until after 2020."
~~ Dean Baker, Campaign For America's Future { full article }


U.S. energy consumption is 44 percent coal, 24 percent natural gas, 20 percent nuclear, 7 percent hydroelectric, and 5 percent other (including wind & solar).
~~ per Time Magazine pie chart, Feb 2010


"Senate Republicans used the filibuster to delay 80 percent of legislation in 2009." per Time Magazine

"Forty-four percent of members of Congress are millionaires. Of the 237 millionaire legislators, at least seven have a net worth greater than $100 million." per Center For Responsive Politics

ARIZONA, PART 1: The Arizona Legislature passed and Gov. Jan Brewer signed a law requiring police officers to question anyone who they suspect of being in the country illegally and to require proof of their immigration or citizenship status. Liberals were appalled, since many police jurisdictions in Arizona are already practicing racial profiling.

ARIZONA, PART 2: On the same day, the National Marijuana Policy Project announced their plan to gather the minimum 150,000 signatures required by July to get an initiative on the November 2010 ballot to legalize medical marijuana in Arizona. The local organization's website is

Interesting to note the election results of the May 18th U.S. primaries. While each race is now a battle for November, the numbers of votes in the four significant races were strongly pro-Democrat:
Arkansas Senate primary Dems 326,187 & GOP 139,303
Kentucky Senate primary Dems 513,659 & GOP 348,680
Pennsylvania Senate primary Dems 1,041,971 & GOP 815,432
Democrat Mark Critz beat Republican Tim Burns to fill out the term of the late Jack Murtha [PA-12], Dems 71,684 to GOP 59,476


India and Bangladesh have long fought about sovereignty over New Moore island in the Bay of Bengal; the matter became moot in March 2010 when the 1.4 square mile landform was immersed by rising seas (another clear result of global warming & climate change).

"Insurers are probably the only people I know who are more worried about climate change than the environmentalists ... The [insurer] companies know that the weather patterns are changing. And they know that there's real risk out there."
~~ Joel Ario, chair of the Climate Task Force of the Natl Assn of Insurance Commissioners


Halliburton/Dresser Industries, the scourge of the invasion & occupation of Iraq, screwed up the installation of a concrete plug where the Deepwater Horizon attached to the seabottom – just twenty hours before the explosion that set off the worst oil spill in history. { full article }

While the servants of the Oligarchy blame each other at the Congressional show trial about the tragic mess in the Gulf of Mexico, fault is quite easily assigned: call it the Republican-B.P. Megaspill, so that our grandchildren know who helped kill the biosphere.


Modern Consumerism: Earth Day expanded into Earth Month, and Target stores held a big Earth Month Sale.

"In the U.S., there are more arrests for marijuana possession each year than for all violent crimes combined." per Marijuana Policy Project

"If the same book is available at Amazon in both paper and e-book formats, 40 percent of their customers now order the electronic version."
~~ per New Yorker Magazine, April 2010

"There are 2.3 million prisoners in the U.S, or 753 per 1000,000 – the highest rate in the world." per Time Magazine

Human population on Planet Earth has increased over 10,000 years from roughly four million to nearly seven billion today, and is expected to add another billion humans in the next 15 years.

"Worldwide, paper consists of from one-third to one-half of the content of landfills."
~~ David Owen

Copyright 2010 by G.E. Nordell, all rights reserved

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