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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

News Factoids for September 2009


467,000 jobs cut in June; jobless rate at 9.5 percent
== internet news headline, July 2009

"In December [2008] Detroit's jobless rate was 21 percent."
== Richard Florida

"Between 1975 and 2007, the real wages of the average production worker ... decreased by 18 percent."
== Les Leopold

"The number of Americans receiving food stamps increased 22 percent over the previous summer."
== Time Magazine, September 2009

The Walgreen's Drugstore chain is cutting employees. They dropped a percentage of management at headquarters, and are dropping higher-level positions at each store. My local Walgreen's was already understaffed, and in July cut or combined three supervisor positions.

Salaries in the U.S. are up only two percent, the worst in 27 years
== Fox Radio News, July 2009

"Since 1950, the US manufacturing sector has shrunk from 32 percent of non-farm employment to just 10 percent."
== Richard Florida

The Bush fiscal year 2009 federal budget asks for almost 100 times more to regulate labor unions than to make emmployers comply with labor laws.
== per Economicv Policy Institute

"Productivity in coal mines has tripled, but the wages of coal miners has dropped 20%."
== Jeff Goodell


"Foreclosures rise 15% in first half of 2009"
== internet news headline, July 2009

"[In 2008] imposing consumer fees became the main business of banks, totaling 53 percent of the industry's income."
== Jim Hightower

"The share of homes purchased with 100 percent financing went from 3 percent in 2003 to 33 percent in 2006."
== Dean Baker

"In 1970, the ratio of the top 100 corporate CEOs and the average worker's pay was 40 to one. By 2007, it was 1,723 to one."
== Les Leopold

"In 1970, the top one percent received 8 percent of the national income. By 2007, [the Oligarchy] was gobbling up 28 percent of the national income."
== Les Leopold

Two-thirds of U.S. corporations paid NO federal income taxes between 1998 and 2005. About 68 percent of foreign corporations doing business in the U.S. paid no federal income taxes over the same period.
== per AP News and the General Accounting Office

"Between 1940 and 1960, the [U.S.] homeownership rate rose from 44 percent to 62 percent ... By 2004, a record 69.2 percent of American families owned their home."
== Richard Florida


"In the first half of 2009, 123 TV news shows were cancelled, 106 newspapers folded, 110 bureaus closed, 556 magazines died, and 12,000 [U.S.] journalists lost their jobs."
== Mother Jones Magazine

"Americans buy more than $57 billion worth of lottery tickets a year, or $500 per household, [which is] more than is spent on movies, music and books combined."
== Mother Jones Magazine, March 2009


"A century ago, there were 15,000 kinds of apples in America; now there are 1500. Among the varieties that have disappeared are 96 percent of corn, 95 percent of cabbages, and 81 percent of tomatoes, Today, four giant suppliers (Monsanto, Syngenta, Limagrain & DuPont/Pioneer Hi-Bred) control more than half of the seed market."
== Novella Carpenter, in Mother Jones Magazine

"Climate change has shortened the New England timber [harvest] season from six months to four."
== Mother Jones Magazine, March 2009

The mining industry produces one-third of all toxic waste released to the U.S. environment.


Have you noticed that a half gallon isn't, anymore? What used to be a half-gallon container of ice cream was shrunk some time ago to 1.75 quarts. Recently, ALL of the local supermarkets have switched to 1.5 quart containers of ice cream, without notice or fanfare – nor reduction in price. By 'all local', I mean the Smith's/Kroger's and Albertson's national chains, the Lowe's grocery chain out of Texas, the Breyer's & Dreyer's & Kemp's national brands, and even the local Creamland Dairy brand. Given that the change was industry-wide, how can this not be a conspiracy?

In Afghanistann in May 2009, there were 38,000 troops, with 21,000 more being sent there, while the same overpaid mercenaries used in Iraq numbered 71,000.

Roughly 40 percent of imported U.S. consumer goods come from China. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recall for Chinese manufacturers was 69 percent in 2007, and 53 percent in 2008.
== per 'The Progressive' Magazine and Reuters

In less than 24 hours after Republican Congressman Joe Wilson shouted his rude "You lie!" outburst during President Obama's historic healthcare speech on September 9th, concerned Americans donated $400,000 to Democratic opponent Rob Miller, with more expected. The one-day campaign funding deluge amounted to more than the entire pharmaceutical industry gave to Rep. Wilson during the last election cycle.

On 5 September 2009, the Valencia County News-Bulletin local newspaper printed a very nice article on my solar generation hardware (and about me) with two photos , in which the reporter anointed me with the title 'microcosmic energy mogul'. Text and both photos posted on my website.

Copyright 2009 by G.E. Nordell, all rights reserved

Thursday, September 24, 2009

September 2009 Quotations

"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
~~ Albert Einstein [1879-1955]

"Here's a new internet acronym: BOO! (Blame it on Obama!)".
~~ G.E. Nordell

"Let Wall Street have a nightmare and the whole country has to help them back to bed again."
~~ Will Rogers [1879-1935]

"Empire is the only way to honor avarice and morality, the only way to be good and wealthy."
~~ William Appleman Williams [1921-90]

"One of [Reagan's] great gifts to America was the public rebirth of bigotry."
~~ Jonathan Valin

"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it, misdiagnosing it, and then applying the wrong remedies."
~~ Groucho Marx [1890-1977]

"One cannot weep for the entire world. It is beyond human strength. One must choose."
~~ Jean Anouilh [1910-87], in the stageplay "Cecile" (1954)

"There are more fools in the world than there are people."
~~ Heinrich Heine [1797-1856]

"Half of knowing what you want is knowing what you have to give up to get it."
~~ Sidney Howard [1891-1939] {not Calvin Coolidge}

"The God worth worshipping is the one who pays us the compliment of self-regulation, and we might return it by minding our own business."
~~ Roger Rosenblatt (Time Magazine essay 12/2001)

"There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves."
~~ Will Rogers [1879-1935]

"Nothing in the world is so powerful as an idea whose time has come."
~~ Victor Hugo [1802-85]

"There can be no progress if people have no faith in tomorrow."
~~ John F. Kennedy [1917-63]

"All the world over I'll back the masses against the classes."
~~ William Gladstone [1809-98]

"Our age ... needs people capable of real heroism – not the kind of heroism which ends up in glory – but the kind which ends up bringing out and making available the truth, what works, what is honest and real."
~~ Werner Erhard

"Getting down to the bottom of things, this is a pretty raw civilization of ours – pretty wasteful, pretty cruel ... And in a lot of respects we Americans are the rawest and crudest of all. Our production, our factory laws, our charities, our relations between capital and labor, our distribution – all wrong, out of gear. We've stumbled along for a while, trying to run a new civilization in old ways, but we've got to start to make this world over."
~~ Thomas Alva Edison [1847-1931], in 1912

"We need to fix the climate, and we need to start yesterday."
~~ Kevin Drum

"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend; and inside a dog, it's too dark to read."
~~ Groucho Marx [1890-1977]

"Genius is one percent inspiration, and ninety-nine percent perspiration."
~~ Thomas Alva Edison [1847-1931]

"New Orleans isn't a city, it's an outdoor mental asylum located on top of a giant sponge."
~~ James Lee Burke

"It is time [that] men allowed their imaginations to infect their intellect."
~~ E.B. White [1899-1985], in 1956

"Republicans are worried about voter fraud – [it] seems there is not enough of it."
~~ Kate Clinton

"All we want is to be completely human and in each other's company."
~~ Joseph Campbell [1904-87]

"Friendship is like peeing in your pants – everyone can see it, but only YOU can feel its true warmth."
~~ viral email, 2009

"To me, philosophy is everything. It is the way [that] one lives."
~~ Jean-Paul Sartre [1905-80]

"Here's a new and useful word: 'Re(publi)tard'."
~~ G.E. Nordell

"They is a very vague term."
~~ Agatha Christie [1890-1976]

"Familiarity breeds contempt only among [movie] critics."
~~ Richard Corliss, in Time Magazine

"The gullibilty of the public [has become] an economic resource."
~~ Wendell Berry

"Love is the triumph of imagination over intelligence"
~~ H.L. Mencken [1880-1956]

"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go."
~~ Oscar Wilde [1854-1900]

"Modern conservatism has decayed from the positive, pragmatic force [that] its founders envisioned into a bitter resistance movement that's given up on fresh ideas."
~~ Randy James, in Time Magazine

"Edison is the new Gutenberg. He has invented the new printing."
~~ Vachel Lindsay [1879-1931], in 1915

"The economy is so bad that Baskin Robbins is down to 22 flavors."
~~ G.E. Nordell

“There must be no barriers to freedom of inquiry. There is no place for dogma in science. The scientist is free, and must be free to ask any question, to doubt any assertion, to seek for any evidence, to correct any errors.”
~~ J. Robert Oppenheimer [1904-67]

"I will not stand by while the special interests use the same old tactics to keep things exactly the way they are. ... Not this time. Not now."
~~ President Barack Obama, on 9 September 2009

"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."
~~ Eleanor Roosevelt [1884-1962]

"The most thought-provoking thing in our thought-provoking time is that we are still not thinking."
~~ Martin Heidegger [1889-1976]

“Politics is not the art of the possible. It consists in choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable.”
~~ John Kenneth Galbraith [1908-2006]

“Why do you have to be a non-conformist like everybody else?“
~~ James Thurber [1894-1961]

"The best thing about the future is that it comes only one day at a time."
~~ Abraham Lincoln [1809-65]

{each set of posted quotations are then posted at the Working Minds website, alphabetical by author}