Copyright Gary Edward Nordell, all rights reserved. Powered by Blogger.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Essay #93: "On The Barricades"

        I was very surprised that I got ultra-depressed after the recent U.S. national elections. The fascists grabbed further control of the structure of government. This year, they basically took My Country away from We The People. A very real bummer.

        The Revolution is never over, the Class War is perpetual. The workers and Middle Class take some ground now and then, usually after some screw-up caused by the incompetent Master Class. Screw-ups such as the G.O.P. Economic Meltdown move the economy backward, reducing the Quality of Life for America, and for the World. The net gain seems never to near the goal line.
        The fascists and tea-baggers and fundamentalists of the Republican Party sold out to the Oligarchy long ago, and act in their behalf against The People. The weenie liberals of the Democratic Party are cowardly and ineffective. The metaphorical ball moves a little this way, then a lot that way – lately, the robber barons of the Oligarchy are winning.
        Neither party has the courage or integrity to take on the Oligarchy. The Republicans are on the side of the Master Class, and the Dems ran a defense strategy in 2010 that lost 6 seats in the Senate and 64 seats in the House.

        Short of a real Third Party alliance against the Oligarchy, there are only masses of uncoordinated ecologicals, progressives, off-the-grid people, constitutionalists and other issue advocates – those FOR well-being, FOR education, FOR peace, FOR justice – floundering around trying to pry any and all benefits from the clawed mitts of The Pirates In Charge. The workers work, the Oligarchs steal, the politicians make it legal.

        While the vile Oligarchy has us being worried about an imaginary conspiracy of outside enemies who are going to take away our freedoms, we fail to notice that our day-to-day freedoms are eroded by each victory of the Oligarchy. The Oligarchy wants a return to feudalism and slavery. They rail against progress and safety and well-being and education, and Congress caves in and hands them what they demand, with the fiscal and lifestyle cost always being borne by The People. We worry about the latest diversionary witch-hunt – Commies, Mooslums, immigrants, liberals – while the real enemy buys up pieces of our national commons, by privatizing our national and local governments.
        ‘Privatized’ means that the Oligarchy owns it. They can then charge exorbitant amounts for services and goods that we were getting (just fine, thank you) from unionized government workers.
        No Unions? No problem.
        After privatization, we pay more for less, and the results are either contaminated, or of lesser quality, or both.
        And Congress hands those pieces to them, in return for campaign-financing dollars, which are then deftly paid over to the Oligarchs who own the media.
        And 58 percent of registered voters failed their country in November, and of the 42 percent who did vote, a majority voted to reverse the emergency repairs needed to fix the G.O.P. Economic Meltdown that President Obama inherited from Dubya.

        What we need is a union. We could call it the United Federation of Indentured Servants. (Your grandchildren will be paying off the Republican National Debt, so they get to join, too.) Everyone who is a citizen or a taxpayer or resident of the United States is eligible. Fascists will not want to join; all Republicans and a sizeable portion of Democrats and Independents are likewise opponents of The People. The Oligarchs don’t and won’t care about these concerns – until there is a significant voice interfering with their propaganda and their fiscal raping and pillaging.

* *          * *          * *          * *

        Mark Zuckerberg was just named Time Magazine’s “Man of The Year” – at age 24. The articles in Time and the fictional tale in the movie “The Social Network” describe the future that MarkZ is living into. He set up Facebook as a virtual community that will be and is building itself. The current game is to reach a billion members, which is predicted to happen some time in late 2012. Facebook is already nearly twice the size of the U.S. population. And (hee, hee) the Mafia can’t get in, the Oligarchy can only rent ads, the fascists have no way to make a computer system afraid, and MarkZ is already merrily inventing the next stages of society, to be located in cyberspace.

        Facebook is the New Society, just as the American Revolution established the existence of a constitutional democratic republic. There may be skinheads and tea-baggers and anarchists and perverts and numbskulls scattered among Facebook’s membership, but that will sort itself out – small nodes of idiocy, wasting some teeny fraction of cyber resources (like cold germs: always there).
        America is a free country, a free society; so is Facebook, albeit a functional benevolent monarchy.

        As happened on Planet Earth eons ago (or six thousand years according to Biblical retards), the ectoplasm of the internet will form into clumps, then into cells, then into micro-organisms made up of human individuals. The New Society already exists, and it is forming into cyber-entities that eventually will take on a Meaning & Purpose because that is what is needed to win the Class War.
        Where there is oppression, Liberty must light the dark.

* *          * *          * *          * *

        During the Revolutionary Era, only about 25 percent of the population of the Colonies stood behind the Declaration of Independence. About 25 percent fought all change whatsoever – they supported the aristocracy and were known as Tories. The 50 percent in the middle were the sheeple, who tried to stay out of politics – they had farms & crops to tend and stores & businesses to run. (Many sheeple did eventually get involved, once the British started shooting American civilians.)

        That’s pretty much how the Body Politic lines up today – even around the World. The 25 percent on the Progressive end versus the 25 percent on the Regressive end, with the ignorant sheeple in the middle.
        But everyone – left, right; upper, lower; insider, outsider – in the United States has been stuck by the Oligarchy with paying off the Republican National Debt. Every single resident of the United States of America is liable for that debt.

        Reason-Based Taxation solves that problem, but the big roadblock is the political will to solve such a problem, or any of modern civilization’s many current crises. The Oligarchy does not want their raping and pillaging regulated, nor do they admit to any liability for the 25 TRILLION dollars of the Republican National Debt.
        The Oligarchy will quickly realize that Reason-Based Taxation ends their joyride on the backs of honest workers. We must generate, somehow, the political will to institute Reason-Based Taxation, just as Roosevelt’s New Deal was an uphill battle. We also need to stand on the barricades and prevent destruction of plans for energy independence, mitigation of climate changes, peace initiatives, and environmental sanity.

        We need a Third Party whose revolutionary purpose is to regulate the pirates of the Oligarchy and to restore the Constitution of the People and to ‘promote the general Welfare’.

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

United Federation of Indentured Servants official website
U.F.O.I.S. Facebook Page

Sunday, December 26, 2010

December 2010 Quotations

"Our real enemy is cynicism."
~~ British folksinger-activist Billy Bragg

"If you talk to the animals they will talk with you and you will know each other. If you do not talk to them you will not know them and what you do not know, you will fear. What one fears, one destroys."
~~ Chief Dan George [1899-1981]

"Certain things catch your eye, But pursue only those that capture your heart."
~~ old Native American saying

"An artist is a creature driven by demons -- he usually doesn't know why they chose him and he's usually too busy to wonder why."
~~ William Faulkner [1897-1962]

"Let us hear the voice of reason, singing in the night"
~~ line from song in "Muppet Christmas Carol" [1992]

"Losing hurts twice as bad as winning feels good."
~~ baseball manager George 'Sparky' Anderson [1934-2010]

"A director must be a policeman, a midwife, a psychoanalyst, a sycophant and a bastard."
~~ Billy Wilder [1906-2002]

"Wonder is our need today, not information."
~~ Elia Kazan [1909-2003]

"With thought, all problems can be resolved."
~~ character Hercule Poirot (as written by Agatha Christie [1890-1976])

"I have ten commandments. The first nine are, thou shalt not bore. The tenth is, thou shalt have right of final cut."
~~ Billy Wilder [1906-2002]

"Half of what I say is meaningless, but I say it so that the other half may reach you."
~~ Kahlil Gibran [1883-1931]

"A revolution is not a dinner party, [it is] an insurrection, an act of violence."
~~ Chairman Mao [1893-1976]

"Labor is prior to and independent of capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration."
~~ Abraham Lincoln [1809-1965]

“Goodbye Mr. Zanuck: it certainly has been a pleasure working at 16th Century Fox.”
~~ auteur Jean Renoir [1894-1979] of France

“The person who has never seen movies by Satyajit Ray is like a person who has never seen the moon and the sky."
~~ Akira Kurosawa [1910-98]

"Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing."
~~ Theodore Roosevelt [1858-1919], Labor Day speech, 1903

"The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic state itself. That, in its essence, is fascism – ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power."
~~ Franklin Delano Roosevelt [1882-1945]

"Where there is oppression, Liberty must light the dark."
~~ G.E. Nordell

"Nothing so much contributes to promote the public well-being as the exportation of manufactured goods."
~~ Robert Walpole, Earl of Orford [1676-1745]

"Success is measured by how high you bounce when you hit bottom."
~~ Gen. George S. Patton [1885-1945]

"If you make any film that accurately portrays the world as it is – that portrays people's lives the way [that] they actually are – by definition, that's a political film."
~~ movie director Steven Soderbergh

"Life is a series of adjustments to plans that didn't work out."
~~ mystery author Margaret Coel

"An aristocracy is bad manners organized."
~~ Henry James [1843-1916]

"Maturity is a high price to pay for growing up."
~~ British playwright Sir Tom Stoppard

"Whoever established the high road, and how high it should be, should be fired."
~~ actress Sandra Bullock

"Truth exists, only falshood has to be invented."
~~ Cubist painter Georges Braque [1882-1963]

"A work of art is a thing that requires as much cunning and viciousness as the perpetration of a crime."
~~ painter Edgar Degas [1834-1917]

"Coyote is always out there waiting, and coyote is always hungry."
~~ old Native American saying

"We should always have goals. If you don't have a mountain, build one and then climb it. And after you climb it, build another one; otherwise you start to flatline in your life."
~~ Sylvester Stallone

"An educated person is one who has attained a rational understanding of the pros and cons mof the major problems facing society during his[/her] lifetime."
~~ Walston Chubb, in 1978

"As courage is bravery in the face of fear, virtue is right conduct in the face of temptation."
~~ Robert A. Heinlein [1907-88]

"What you see with your eyes shut is what counts."
~~ Sioux shaman Lame Deer [1903?-1976]

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

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

November 2010 Quotations

"The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice."
~~ Martin Luther King, Jr. [1929-68]

"The rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than that proportion."
~~ Adam Smith [1723-90], in "The Wealth of Nations", 1776

"For [Adam] Smith, the market moves toward monopoly; it is the job of the philosopher to define, and of the soveriegn state to restore, fair play."
~~ Adam Gopnik, in 2010

"Faith has wings but reason crawls and often in the wrong direction."
~~ Leonard Wibberley [1915-83]

"The definition of a Republican is: Someone who can't enjoy a meal unless they know [that] someone else is starving."
~~ Mary Karr, quoting her father in the great memoir "The Liar's Club" [1995]

"Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts."
~~ Daniel Patrick Moynihan [1927-2003]

"When people are free to do as they please, they usually imitate each other."
~~ Eric Hoffer [1902-83]

"No one is innocent after the experience of governing. But not everyone is guilty."
~~ Daniel Patrick Moynihan [1927-2003]

"No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars or sailed to an uncharted land or opened a new heaven to the human spirit."
~~ Helen Keller [1880-1968]

"The frustrated follow a leader less because of their faith that he is leading them to a promised land than because of their immediate feeling that he is leading them away from their unwanted selves. Surrender to a leader is not a means to an end but a fulfillment. Whither they are led is of secondary importance."
~~ Eric Hoffer [1902-83]

"What constitutes a freak when nearly the entire culture has become a freak show?"
~~ Charles Taylor

"Politicians should dress like NASCAR drivers so [that] we know who their corporate sponsors are"
~~ bumper sticker

"Writing about music is like dancing about architecture."
~~ Martin Mull

"Unlimited corporate funding of candidates is a dagger directed at the heart of our democracy."
~~ Bill Moyers

"There is a time for departure, even when there's no certain place to go."
~~ Tennessee Williams [1911-83]

"All things excellent are as difficult as they are rare."
~~ Baruch de Spinoza [1632-77]

"No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money."
~~ Dr. Samuel Johnson [1709-84]

"Doubt is the father of invention."
~~ Galileo [1564-1642]

"i've got my faults, but living in the past isn't one of them. There's no future in it."
~~ baseball manager George 'Sparky' Anderson [1934-2010]

"If there's anything I hate more than not being taken seriously, it's being taken too seriously."
~~ Billy Wilder [1906-2002]

"Life is a series of suicides, divorces, promises broken, children smashed, whatever."
~~ John Cassavetes [1929-89], line from movie "Love Streams" [1984]

"The Republican Party, as much as it pains me to say this, should be ashamed of themselves."
~~ David Stockman, Reagan's budget director, on "60 Minutes" in October 2010

"Man's most valuable trait is a judicious sense of what not to believe."
~~ Euripedes [circa 480 B.C.E. – 406 B.C.E.]

"The texture of a film is affected very much by the honor with which you make it."
~~ movie director Danny Boyle

"God, there's got to be another way"
~~ The Who band, line from "Who Are You?" song, 1978

"No government is ever perfect. One of the chief virtues of democracy, however, is that its defects are always visible and under democratic process can be pointed out and corrected."
~~ Harry S. Truman [1884-1972]

"I think now that the great thing is not so much the formulation of an answer for myself, for the theater, or the play – but rather the most accurate possible statement of the problem."
~~ Arthur Miller [1915-2005]

"The unexamined life is not worth living."
~~ Socrates [469-399 B.C.E.]

"Physics is the universe's operating system."
~~ Steven R. Garman

"If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything."
~~ old saying, as well as 1990 country-western hit by Aaron Tippin

"I learned a long time ago that reality is much weirder than anyone's imagination."
~~ Hunter S. Thompson [1937-2005]

"Life is the art of drawing sufficient conclusions from insufficient premises."
~~ Samuel Butler [1612-80]

"I'm not surprised you're a lawyer. You probably couldn't make a living at much of anything else."
~~ Rex Stout [1886-1975]

"The price of failure is death; the price of success is death. Seek to succeed."
~~ G.E. Nordell, in the {unfinished} book “Warrior Mind”

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

Saturday, October 16, 2010

October 2010 Quotations

"You're going to face a choice in November. This is a choice between the policies that got us into this mess in the first place and the policies that got us out of this mess – and what the other side is counting on is people not having a good memory."
~~ President Barack Obama, 8 July 2010

"The Republicans are fear-mongers, when in truth the only thing we really need to fear are the Republicans and their owners, the Oligarchs."
~~ G.E. Nordell

"The T.E.A. Party movement is not the solution to what ails America. It is an illustration of what ails America ... because of the movement's self-indulgent premise that none of our challenges and difficulties are our own fault."
~~ Michael Kinsley

"Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential.”
~~ Sir Winston Churchill [1874-1965]

“We are what we repeatedly do; excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.“
~~ Aristotle [384-322 B.C.E.]

“All fine prose is based on the verbs carrying the sentences.“
~~ F. Scott Fitzgerald [1896-1940]

“Never separate the life you live from the words you speak.”
~~ Sen. Paul Wellstone [1944-2002]

“If you're going to tell people the truth, be funny or they'll kill you."
~~ movie auteur Billy Wilder [1906-2002]

"I wish we had been able to obstruct more."
~~ G.O.P. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, August 2010

"The education of our children ... is the most noble thing in the world to do."
~~ Aaron Stern

"They're always flying these flags at half mast. Why don't they just make the flag poles shorter?"
~~ New Mexico state employee in 2010

"Pleasure and action make the hours seem shorter."
~~ character Iago, as written by William Shakespeare [1564-1616]

“The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.”
~~ William Arthur Ward [1921–94]

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”
~~ Sir Winston Churchill [1874-1965]

“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
~~ Maria Robinson

"Whenever I hear [the word] 'culture'... I remove the safety from my Browning!" {original: "Wenn ich Kultur höre ... entsichere ich meinen Browning!"}
~~ from the 1933 German play "Schlageter" written by Hanns Johst (and not uttered by either Hermann Göring or Julius Streicher}

"The policy elite ... are acting like the priests of some ancient cult, demanding that we engage in human sacrifices to appease the anger of invisible gods."
~~ Paul Krugman. in 2010

"The community should guard the rights of each individual member, and (in return for this protection) each individual should submit to the laws of the community, without which submission of all it is impossible that protection can be extended to any."
~~ William Blackstone [1809–81]

"Military policy is like cancer: Nobody knows where it comes from but it can't be ignored."
~~ Robert A. Heinlein [1907-88]

"Live your life as a singular, existential work of art, never to be repeated."
~~ G.E. Nordell

"DUM VIVIMUS, VIVAMUS" (While we live, let us live!"
~~ as quoted by Robert A. Heinlein [1907-88]

"[New York is] fun city. If the pollution doesn't get you, the traffic will. If you live thru those two, you're fair game for the street hunters."
~~ Mickey Spillane [1918-2006], in "Survival ... Zero", 1970

"The United States never lost a soldier or a foot of ground in my Administration. We kept the peace. People asked how it happened. By god, it didn't just happen, I'll tell you that."
~~ Dwight D. Eisenhower [1890-1969]

"Disturbing the ecological balance is the worst mistake [that] any government can make."
~~ Robert A. Heinlein [1907-88], in 1963

"There are no poor politicians."
~~ Mickey Spillane [1918-2006]

"Integrity has no need of rules."
~~ Albert Camus [1913-60]

"All conservatives are such from personal defects. They have been effeminated by position or nature, born halt and blind, through luxury of their parents, and can only, like invalids, act on the defensive."
~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson [1803-82]

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter."
~~ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. [1929-68]

“Never regret. If it's good, it's wonderful. If it's bad, it's experience.”
~~ Victoria Holt

"I was no chief and never had been, but because I had been more deeply wronged than others, this honor was conferred upon me, and I resolved to prove worthy of the trust."
~~ Geronimo [1829-1909]

"What treaty that the whites have kept has the red man broken? Not one."
~~ Sitting Bull [circa 1831-1890]

"Re-examine all that you have been told. Dismiss that which insults your soul."
~~ Walt Whitman [1819-92]

"Painting taught me to make not beautiful images but necessary ones."
~~ French filmmaker Robert Bresson

"Our wisdom comes from our experience, and our experience comes from our foolishness."
~~ French writer Sacha Guitry

"The United States] gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance, requires only that they who live under its protection should demean themselves as good citizens."
~~ President George Washington,
in a letter to the Jews of Newport, Rhode Island, in 1790

"Sometimes [writing] comes easily and perfectly. Sometimes it is like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges."
~~ Ernest Hemingway [1899-1961]

"In three words I can sum up everything about life: It goes on."
~~ poet Robert Frost [1874-1963]

"The art of dining well is no slight art, nor the pleasure slight."
~~ Michel de Montaigne [1533-92]
"Be yourself, everyone else is taken."
~~ Oscar Wilde [1854-1900]

"Progress has little to do with speed and much to do with direction."
~~ old saying

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

Sunday, October 10, 2010

August-September 2010 News Factoids

The United States was once the world's leader in the percentage of young people with college degrees; the College Board now finds that the U.S. has fallen to 12th place among 36 developed nations.
~~ per New York Times

Hishi {seashell disk} necklaces are back in fashion, after 40 years. But the local kids that are wearing them never heard of the word 'hishi' before.

President Obama was in Albuquerque last week, meeting with Lt. Gov. Diane Denish (the next New Mexico governor!), after which she took him to Barelas Coffee House for posole.

"The 137,698 bankruptcy filings in July represent a 9 percent increase from a year earlier ... Last year, there were 1.4 million consumer bankruptcy filings in the U.S., a 32 percent increase from 2008."
~~ Bloomberg News

In response to a $28 million budget gap for 2010, the City of Colorado Springs in Colorado is turning off as many as one-third of its streetlights.


Apprehensions of illegal immigrants are down more than 60% since 2005, to 550,000 per year; violent crime in U.S. border counties dropped more than 30% in the past two decades.

In August 2010, "An island of ice 4.4 times the size of Manhattan is drifting across the Arctic Ocean after breaking off from a glacier in Greenland, potentially threatening shipping lanes and oil platforms."

"The planet just logged the warmest decade, the warmest year, the warmest six months, and the warmest April, may & June on record."
~~ National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration, July 2010

"Nine nations recorded their all-time high temperature records in 2010."
~~ National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration, July 2010

In 1964, the annual global [fishing] catch totalled around 50 million tons. In the late 1980s, the total world catch peaked at around 85 million tons. [And] for the past two decades, the global catch has been steadily declining.
~~ per New Yorker Magazine

2010 ties global heat record. The Hill: "The first eight months of 2010 tied for the warmest combined global land and ocean surface temperatures since records started in 1880."
~~ per the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration

"As many as 854,000 people [in the U.S.] ... hold top secret security clearances. [And] fully a quarter million holders of top secret security clearances are employees not of the government but of private, profit-making businesses."
~~ Hendrick Hertzberg

One out of every seven mortgages in the United States was either delinquent or in foreclosure during the first quarter of 2010.

As of June, the number of Americans on food stamps had set a new all-time record for each of 19 consecutive months.

Nearly 10 million Americans now receive unemployment insurance, which is almost four times as many as were receiving it in 2007.

Nationwide, bankruptcy filings rose 20 percent in the 12 month period ending June 30th.

More than 25 percent of all Americans now have a credit score below 599.

One out of every five children in the United States is now living in poverty.

While spending most of the day coding new material on my websites, especially the five bookstore sites, I have lately noticed that Amazon now has long-out-of-production VHS tapes back in stock as *NEW* product, often for under $5. My only guess to account for this phenomenon is that it has to do with the economy: DVD & Blu-ray prices are too high, and-or the studios are able to make a buck without much overhead by reproducing VHS tapes; the other possibility is demand thru kiosk sales.

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

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Essay #92: Reason-Based Taxation 2010

        What was brilliant about the creation of the United States of America, beginning from the Declaration of Independence in 1776, was the boldly inventive statement that the individual always has the right to act in his/her best interest.
        This is also the root of Objectivism.
        But Man's inherent right to the good services of his/her government, along with other basic and unalienable rights, is prevented by the intentions of the extant Political System, in each and every country across the globe, in each and every hamlet, across each and every national border.
        Present government institutions seldom get the job done, whatever their stated purpose: the most grievous misfeasance here in America has been in the schools and in the legal industry. An entire generation are now adults who on average cannot read or write effectively and cannot think their way out of a paper bag. The American legal industry's top leaders in December 2000 and again in December 2004 handed over the U.S. Presidency to a usurper who sold his term of office to the oil & timber monopolies, and to who knows what other special interests.
        And the U.S. Supreme Court officially made the United States a fascist country with its execrable Citizens United decison of January 2010.

*          *          *          *
        One percent of the population now owns 65 percent of everything in America. Twenty years ago, they owned only 35 percent of everything in the country: in the years since Dr. Ravi Batra established that base-line, the One Percent – the Oligarchy that rules this country – used the anti-democratic principles of Reaganomics to accrue 30 percent more of the totality of the assets in this country.
        But they do not have enough: they want it all.
        This One Percent, the Oligarchy, has spent millions of dollars to prevent any levy that might approach having them pay their fair share, the result being the Bush Tax Giveaway that was fast-tracked thru the U.S. Congress, the Republican National Debt that today stands at twenty-five trillion dollars, the 'G.O.P. Economic Meltdown', and the still-worsening worldwide Great Recession.
        What is the Oligarchy's fair share? The calculation is quite simple and direct:
        The U.S. Defense Department spends certain monies for doing their job. which includes protecting the 65% of all the land and property and assets owned by the Oligarchy, so therefore the Oligarchy should pay 65% of the Defense Department budget every year.
        The Oligarchy would insist that they are good patriots, so they should be willing to pay a 65% share of the Homeland Security and Interior Department budgets every year.
        The Oligarchy owns 65% of all business concerns, big and small, so they should pay 65% of the Commerce and Transportation and Energy and Agriculture Department budgets every year.
        The Department of State probably goes overboard in fulfilling the wishes of the Oligarchy, but I say that the Oligarchy need only pay a 65% share of the State Department budget every year as well.
        The Oligarchy, the One Percent, should be paying 65% of the entire Federal Budget every year. The same calculation applies to every U.S. federal department and bureau and section.
        This principle applies also to each and every country around the world, to each and every state or province or canton or arrondissement, to each and every local government entity, down to each and every school district and water district.

*          *          *          *
        The Oligarchy that rules this and other countries owns sixty-five percent of everything, so they should pay 65% of the taxes required to supply the benefits that they derive from government in all its overlapping jurisdictions. Any other plan or assessment will concede to them the means to achieve their ultimate intention, which is to own one-hundred percent of everything – a return to feudalism. After the Oligarchy has achieved that intention, they have only your 'soul' – your Self – to take away from you and yours.
        The Oligarchy has already taken away your vote, 'without firing a shot', in the ChadGate fiasco of 2000: the U.S. Supreme Court anointed George W. Bush as President of the U.S. of A. in complete disregard for due process or for the will of the people, based on the wrong-headed certainty that it was right to do so and in the clear knowledge that no one could stop them.
        They ignored the U.S. Constitution in a 'dog and pony show' that was broadcast on national television and radio. Most Americans made no effort to watch or listen to this show, settling instead for the 'sound bite' camouflage served up by – you guessed it – the media conglomerates owned by the Oligarchy.

*          *          *          *
        Previous iterations of class are disappearing, and are being replaced by a structure of Economic Class. The Oligarchy has replaced the Aristocracy, while assuming the same attitude of Divine Right that triggered the French Revolution of 1789.
        The lower economic classes, the 'proletariat', are defined as those who have no capital, nor means of production, and thus are required to sell their labor in order to survive. The Upper Middle economic class deals with the lower classes only while the latter are employed as servants.
        The entire economy works – or does not work – on the backs of the middle and lower classes, whose primary role in the latter XXth Century evolved into that of the Consumer Class: Notice that virtually every middle class American household is in constant debt (even disregarding mortgage payments), which means that they are encouraged – maybe 'required' is a better term – to spend more than they earn, so that the Oligarchy can reap their Divine Right profits on goods that the Consumer Class does not need and cannot in truth afford. The Consumer Class has an envious lifestyle, but in actuality owns less and less: because the Oligarchy owns more and more.
        This is not exactly news. The system of Economic Class ensures the giving away of power to the Oligarchy, in the form of debt, under the constant and compelling threat of job loss. If the middle class worker does not purchase 'the latest', then the economy will collapse and the Consumer will be out of work and thrown into survival among the lower economic classes. The Consumer Class has been taught to spend in order to earn.
        This is in effect worse than the 'indentured servitude' that was common around the time of the U.S. Revolutionary War. A British or other freeman could get passage to America or an apprenticeship in a trade in exchange for an agreed-upon term, often three to five years. The difference between indenture and today's economy is that the Consumer Class owes the Oligarchy and there is no expiration date on the deal: The Consumer Class is required to stay in debt by the pressures of the consumer economy, of which the primary beneficiary is the Oligarchy. (Think not? Did your real net worth – exclusive of housing – increase by anywhere near 50% since 1985?)
        The Oligarchy has done such a good job of fulfilling their devious intention that labor union membership in the U.S. has been down to 15% of the work-force for a long time. President George Dubya honored his idol, Ronnie Reagan, by ordering the Northwest Airlines mechanics union not to strike, just as Ronnie busted the air traffic controller walkout in August of 1981. And the media soon began reporting that George Dubya would prevent a strike at Delta Airlines.
        The later years of Bush's reign saw the entire economy collapse, in the U.S.A. and around the world – the historic 'G.O.P. Economic Meltdown'. (American consumers no longer have jobs or spare money to spend or save, and U.S. consumer spending accounts for 25% of the world economy.) Dubya's agenda included looting the U.S. Treasury, and he did such a thorough job of screwing up America's future that (in typical Dubya incompetence) he screwed up the screw-up. The subprime lending debacle caused the banking crisis that caused the disappearance of half the net value of the stock market indexes, in a matter of months after the 2008 election. And the almost-funny part is that Dubya was supposed to leave the mess for his successor, but he screwed up so badly that the collapse happened before the November 2008 election, and Barack Obama swept into the White House charged with cleaning up Dubya's mess.

*          *          *          *
        Until the structure of the Economic Classes is redesigned so that the middle class, the now 'Consumer Class', is able to acquire wealth as a result of their labors, then matters can only get worse. The only remedy is to increase the taxation levied on the Oligarchy so that they pay their share for the government services that they receive, all down the line.
        The One-Percent, the Oligarchy has already acquired two thirds of this country's total assets; the Wealthy Class (the top 20% of taxpayers) owns 85% of this country's total assets. The Wealthy Class have more than enough money to bribe Congress and local officials to do their bidding, but We The People showed the world in November 2008 that true Power lies with us. The Wealthy Class will fight 'tooth and nail' against Change, so Americans must remain steadfast and vigilant and never back down.
        Like it or not, America and the world are now engaged in Economic Class War.

*          *          *          *
        There are three parts to the policy of Reason-Based Taxation, which in combination will solve the over-long debate on the legitimacy of the income tax as well as solving both the annual budget deficit and the perpetual Republican National Debt.

        FIRST: Restructure the personal income tax so that whatever the Federal Budget from Congress might be, that the Oligarchy is billed for 65% of that budget, that the Wealthy Class (top 20% of earners, including the Oligarchy) is billed for 85% of that budget, and the Middle Class is responsible for the remaining 15% of the budget. (The lowest 40% of earners, the Poor and the Working Poor, pay enough in sales taxes, etc.)
        Might be a good idea to set a tax bracket for the top 10% of earners, too.
        Such a plan enacted into law will include a review each of the first five years (for fine tuning), and then every five years or so. That way, as the Republican National Debt is paid off, and the Wealthy Class's holdings are drawn down, then they will be paying less in taxes: When the Oligarchy owns only, say, 50% of everything, and the Wealthy Class owns only 70%, then they need to pay for only 50% and 70% of the Federal Government's budget.
        And certainly, once the Middle Class / Consumer Class is again thriving, they won't have a problem with paying for their 30% share.
        The present annual Federal Budget includes an automatic deficit (since the Oligarchy is so anal-retentive); this Reason-Based Taxation plan would have the first budget be something like two trillion dollars for operational costs & economic stimulus and another trillion dollars to pay down the Republican National Debt.

        SECOND: The corporate income tax will also need to be restructured. The Working Minds 'Benchmark' for executive pay is that the President of the U.S. is paid $400,000 per year, plus perks like travel and dinners at foreign embassies, so a good baseline measure is half a million dollars in compensation to the Leader of the Free World.
        No executive of any corporation is worth a nickel more than that.
        So compensation of executives above the 'benchmark' half million will be taxed at 50% to the corporation.
        A corporation is allowed (NOT entitled) to a profit of, say, 15% on total revenues. All loopholes are cancelled; any pre-tax profits above the legitimate 15% are taxed at 50% also. (See Part 3)

        THIRD: Corporations will be forced to practice actual Capitalism -- see Working Minds Essay #40 "Paleo-Capitalism" [February 2004].
        Reason-Based Taxation gives the corporation four choices for not paying the 50% tax.

  • Just don't pay executives over half a million dollars per year, all-inclusive, no loopholes.
  • Reduce the profit to 15% by expanding the business, which will take the form of reinvestment: building new plants, offering new products, and such – which actions qualify only if located within U.S. borders.
  • Reduce the profit to 15% by lowering prices or raising wages. Wage increases can include salary changes, bonuses, shorter hours or increased vacation time (for same pay), and employee retirement and E.S.O.P. plans. Qualifying wage increases or bonuses must be a single percentage rate for all employees, pro rata against their annual earnings for the year or the quarter. Naturally, this option may not affect the situation until the following year or quarter, but the job of the executives will be to plan ahead.
  • Reduce the profit to 15% by purchase of treasury shares, i.e. retirement of stock shares available on the market by trading excess cash for stock owned by outsiders. The goal in Paleo-Capitalism is to eliminate debt in the form of outstanding shares being day-traded by speculators within the Stock Market Casino [WM Essay #18 December 2001].

    *          *          *          *
            We The People can take back control of our country and our economy and our lives by instituting Reason-Based Taxation. This may have to begin with local or state legislation, but until the Federal Government is brought to heel and wrested away from the Federalist Society and P.N.A.C. people and the right-wing media and the Oligarchy – the anti-American Forces of Dis-empowerment – there will be no rest for the Progressive forces that are the only hope for a return to rule under the Constitution.
            Discover that you still have power as a Voter and as a Citizen, wherever you live: Simply by USING that power you recreate its existence. By retaining your Natural Power, you keep the Oligarchy – the Culture Structure in its various forms – from stealing from you the Natural Power that was established by the Declaration of Independence and is the basis of the U.S Constitution, and the most precious gift of America to the world.

    [copyright 2010 by Gary Edward Nordell, all rights reserved]

            The preceding is an excerpt from Chapter 20 of my forthcoming book, "Working Minds: A Philosophy of Empowerment".
  • Tuesday, July 27, 2010

    July 2010 News Factoids

    Bush's Legacy: The F.D.I.C. took over 25 insolvent banks in 2008 (including giant Washington Mutual), 140 in 2009, and have already taken over 68 more insolvent banks in the first four months of 2010.

    Sales of Ayn Rand's 1957 novel "Atlas Shrugged" doubled in 2009.

    Went to the local Movies Ten the other day, a Tuesday. Since school is now out, they changed from 4pm weekday start to Noon or 1pm matinees; they raised the matinee price 25 cents; I saw 1245 show "Robin Hood" with two other people in the theater and then "Iron Man 2" 4pm show with a couple behind me only. Also, the local ads are gone: instead of the stream of slide ads for area businesses, there is one actual ad (for a senior services outfit) and the rest of the slides say 'you can have your ad here, call us'.

    "Eight percent of major bills [in the U.S. Senate] were subject to filibuster in the 1960s. That number has climbed to an unprecedented 70 percent today." (2009}

    Sign up to participate in's worldwide 10/10/10 Global Work Party - A Day To Celebrate Climate Solutions

    Ninety percent of emails sent every day are spam.

    "Great catastrophes - 'act of God' weather events that cause more than a billion dollars in damage - have tripled since 1950." ~~ insurance company Munich Re

    Total movie theater box office in May 2010 was down 11 percent from same month last year, and attendance was down 19 percent. ~~ per Time Magazine

    "The recession has directly hit more than half of the nation's working adults, pushing them into unemployment, pay cuts, reduced hours at work or part-time jobs, according to a new Pew Research Center survey."

    When it came time to get a new bottle of merthiolate -- great on bug bites, scratches, etc. -- I found out that this OTC remedy is being removed from the market, period. (Same as with quinine, which was removed around 2005, so that even the doctors at the V.A. are not supposed to prescribe it.) But Albuquerque has a major Hispanic population, and so I found a nice replacement for tincture merthiolate at a 'yerberia' in the South Valley. This product (hecho en Mexico) is Mertodol Blanco Jaloma, a clear topical antiseptic that is also good against herpes blisters; Jaloma also makes Mertodol Rojo, a red-colored version.

    According to the Labor Department, the unemployment rate among people in management, business or financial occupations was 4.8 percent in June, compared to 9.5 percent over all, 18.2 percent in construction and 12.1 percent in production.

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

    Monday, July 19, 2010

    July 2010 Quotations

    "One doesn't live in a country, one lives in a language."
    ~~ Romanian philosopher Emil Cioran [1911-95]

    "Melancholy men are of all others most witty."
    ~~ Aristotle [384-322 B.C.E.]

    "You have zero privacy... Get over it."
    ~~ Scott McNealy, co-founder of Sun Microsystems (in 1999)

    "If we continue on the current path of Reality-avoidance, Mankind will be extinct in forty years. And good riddance!"
    ~~ G.E. Nordell

    "During the [George W.] Bush years, the Department of Labor became a cautionary tale about what happens when foxes are asked to guard the henhouse."
    ~~ Esther Kaplan

    "Evolution is a fact. Beyond reasonable doubt, beyond serious doubt, beyond sane, informed, intelligent doubt, beyond doubt evolution is a fact."
    ~~ Richard Dawkins

    "The choice is clear: either we do nothing and allow a miserable and probably catastrophic future to overtake us, or we use our knowledge about human behaviour to create a social environment in which we shall live productive and creative lives and do so without jeopardising the chances that those who follow us will be able to do the same."
    ~~ B.F. Skinner [1904-90], in 1948

    “The one duty we owe to history is to rewrite it.”
    ~~ Oscar Wilde [1854-1900]

    "The opposite of hope is empowerment."
    ~~ Tim De Christopher

    "If it is true that the human mind leans at one extreme toward the bounded, material, and useful, at the other it naturally rises toward the infinite, immaterial, and beautiful."
    ~~ Alexis de Tocqueville [1805-59]

    "I was never more hated than when I tried to be honest."
    ~~ writer Ralph Ellison [1914-94]

    "The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without the work."
    ~~ Émile Zola [1840-1902]

    "It was possible. And possible was all [that] I needed."
    ~~ movie director Julie Davis

    "Unsung, the noblest deed will die"
    ~~ Greek poet Pindar [c.522–443 B.C.E.]

    "If you're going thru hell, keep going."
    ~~ Sir Winston Churchill [1874-1965]

    "Intellectuals start all the trouble in the world."
    ~~ columnist Peggy Noonan, in The Wall Street Journal, in 2004

    "Andrew Jackson believed that you don't measure the health of a society at the apex but at the base."
    ~~ U.S. Senator Jim Webb

    "I was not a guy writing deep-dish revelations. If people see a picture of mine and then sit down and talk about it for 15 minutes, that is a very fine reward, I think."
    ~~ movie director Billy Wilder [1906-2002]

    "The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese."
    ~~ comedian Steven Wright

    "Women are wiser than men because they know less and understand more."
    ~~ James Thurber [1894-1961]

    "What matters is not the idea a man holds, but the depth at which he holds it."
    ~~ poet Ezra Pound [1885-1972]

    "To remain neutral in situations of injustice is to be complicit in that injustice."
    ~~ Bishop Desmond Tutu

    "Imagination was given to man to compensate him for what he is not, a sense of humor to console him for what he is."
    ~~ Francis Bacon [1561-1626]

    "Free market ideology [has] evolved from simple, old-fashioned greed into the sociopathic culture of looting [that] we see on Wall Street today."
    ~~ Ruth Conniff

    "It is well that the people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning."
    ~~ Henry Ford [1863-1947]

    "The greatest enemy of mankind is ignorance of the inherent money power in all of us. When the realization of this comes to man he will, like Sampson, push down the walls of his prison..."
    ~~ E.C. Riegel [1879-1953]

    "It takes a million dollars to beat the system, to pay your own ransom, to buy back your own life."
    ~~ mystery author Tony Hillerman [1925-2008], in "Blessing Way" (1970)

    "There's no such thing as simple. Simple is hard."
    ~~ Martin Scorsese

    "the difference between being stubborn and being principled is being right."
    ~~ Don Yacktman

    "Growth is the only evidence of life."
    ~~ John Henry Newman [1801-90]

    "When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves."
    ~~ Victor Frankl [1905-97]

    "Tomorrow is the most important thing in life. Comes into us at midnight very clean. It's perfect when it arrives and it puts itself in our hands. It hopes we've learned something from yesterday."
    ~~ John Wayne [1907-79], from his controversial 1971 Playboy Magazine interview, and carved onto his tombstone

    "Just Do It"
    ~~ Nike athletic shoes ad campaign, circa 1990 (The inspiration was convicted killer Gary Gilmore, who said "Let’s do it" just before he was executed by a Utah firing squad in 1977.)

    "The right to swing my fist ends where the other man's nose begins."
    ~~ Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. [1841-1935]

    "It don't mean a thing If it ain't got that swing."
    ~~ Irving Mills [1894-1985]

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

    Saturday, June 05, 2010

    June 2010 Quotations

    "To paraphrase the Christian Bible (Matthew 16): For what is a man profited if he shall make beaucoup bucks while transforming the planet into a cesspool."
    ~~ G.E. Nordell

    "Let others praise ancient times; I am glad I was born in these."
    ~~ Ovid [43 B.C.E. – 17 or 18 C.E.]

    "Computers are useless, they can only give you answers."
    ~~ Pablo Picasso [1881-1973]

    "The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity ... the optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty."
    ~~ Sir Winston Churchill [1874-1965]

    "It is not enough to have knowledge, one must also apply it. It is not enough to have wishes, one must also accomplish."
    ~~ Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe [1749-1832]

    "It is well remembered that the entire universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others."
    ~~ John Andrew Holmes, circa 1927

    "When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem resembles a nail."
    ~~ Abraham Maslow [1908-70]

    "Science has proven the existence of global warming. So our position is like the moment in the old tales when you smell the dragon. The only question is which way to run – run or die! Mankind must reverse global warming or die."
    ~~ G.E. Nordell

    "Life need not be easy, provided only that it is not empty."
    ~~ physicist Lise Meitner [1878-1968]

    "A distributed system is one that stops you from getting any work done when a machine you've never even heard of crashes."
    ~~ Leslie Lamport

    "Just because something doesn't do what you planned it to do doesn't mean it's useless."
    ~~ Thomas Alva Edison [1847-1931]

    "Women have not yet achieved the right to be mediocre."
    ~~ Anonymous

    "All we know about the new economic world tells us that nations which train engineers will prevail over those which train lawyers. No nation has ever sued its way to greatness."
    ~~ Richard Lamm

    "It is a damn poor mind indeed which can't think of at least two ways to spell any word."
    ~~ Andrew Jackson [1767–1845], in 1833

    “We are so accustomed to the apparently rational nature of our world that we can scarcely imagine anything happening that cannot be explained by common sense.”
    ~~ Carl G. Jung [1875-1961], in "Man and His Symbols", 1964

    “Almost every desire [that] a poor man has is a punishable offense.”
    ~~ Louis-Ferdinand Céline [1894-1961]

    "A healthy nation is as unconscious of its nationality as a healthy man of his bones. But if you break a nation’s nationality it will think of nothing else but getting it set again."
    ~~ George Bernard Shaw [1856-1950]

    "The decrease in the number of mature persons in the world is a shocking indictment of our civilization."
    ~~ Katharine White [1892-1977], in 1938

    "The hard truth is that [the climate movement] has failed not because conservatives are stupid, but because liberals are cowards."
    ~~ Tim De Christopher

    "Silence is so accurate."
    ~~ painter Mark Rothko [1903-70]

    "Reason should direct and appetite obey."
    ~~ Marcus Tullius Cicero [106 B.C.E. – 43 B.C.E.]

    "Virtue and riches seldom settle on one man."
    ~~ Niccolò Machiavelli [1469-1527]

    "Enthusiasm is the fever of reason."
    ~~ Victor Hugo [1802-1885]

    "We shape our buildings, thereafter they shape us."
    ~~ Sir Winston Churchill [1874-1965]

    "For writers the most important question is simply, What is interesting?"
    ~~ Saul Bellow [1915-2005]

    "Nobody likes to eat his own beef."
    ~~ New Mexico saying, as quoted by Tony Hillerman [1925-2008]

    "Die dulci freure" (Have a nice day)

    "Non illigitami carborundum" (Don't let the b*stards grind you down)

    "A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is brave five minutes longer."
    ~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson [1803-82]

    "The best director is the one you don't see."
    ~~ movie director Billy Wilder [1906-2002]

    "Join the Army, meet interesting people, kill them."
    ~~ comedian Steven Wright

    "The arrogance of the artist is a very profound thing, and it fortifies you."
    ~~ James A. Michener [1907-97]

    "Man is flying too fast for a world that is round. Soon he will catch up with himself in a great rear-end collision."
    ~~ James Thurber [1894-1961]

    Bumper Stickers & T-shirts
    "We have enough youth, how about a fountain of smart?"
    "Make it idiot proof and someone will make a better idiot."
    "Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else."

    "This marriage of money and politics has produced an America of gross inequality at the top and low social mobility at the bottom ... Millions of Americans have awakened to a sobering reality: they live in a plutocracy, where they are disposable. [In an earlier era] the remedy was a popular insurgency that ignited the spark of democracy ... Democracy only works when we claim it as our own."
    ~~ TV journalist Bill Moyers

    "It is my ambition to say in ten sentences what other men say in whole books, what other men do not say in whole books."
    ~~ Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche [1844-1900]

    “Money talks. And writes. And publishes. And reviews. But it can't read.”
    ~~ Jack Woodford [1894-1971]

    "I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters."
    ~~ Frank Lloyd Wright [1867-1959]

    "This would be a cleaner, better world if mankind had been omitted from the scheme of things."
    ~~ S.S. Van Dine [1888-1939]

    "I just made pictures I would've liked to see."
    ~~ movie director Billy Wilder [1906-2002]

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

    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

    Monday, May 17, 2010

    Gulf Megaspill

    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.

    Sunday, May 02, 2010

    May 2010 Quotations

    "Someone once said life is hard. I say, compared to what?"
    ~~ Harvey Mackay

    "Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony."
    ~~ Mahatma Gandhi [1869-1948]

    “There are four boxes to use in the defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, ammo. Use in that order.”
    ~~ Ed Howdershelt

    “The cure for writer’s cramp is writer’s block.”
    ~~ Iñigo de Leon

    "They muddy the water, to make it seem deep."
    ~~ Friedrich Nietzsche [1844-1900]

    "Work saves us from three great evils: boredom, vice, and need."
    ~~ Voltaire [1694-1778]

    "Avoid the crowd. Do your own thinking independently. Be a chess player, not the chess piece."
    ~~ Ralph Charell

    "It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude."
    ~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson [1803-82]

    "Don't tell your problems to people: eighty percent don't care; and the other twenty percent are glad you have them."
    ~~ Lou Holtz

    "Love is something you do, not something you feel."
    ~~ Gordon Atkinson

    "Think in the morning, act in the noon, read in the evening, and sleep at night."
    ~~ William Blake [1757–1827]

    "The only thing high-definition television will do is provide sharper pictures of the garbage."
    ~~ George Carlin [1937-2008]

    "People need trouble – a little frustration to sharpen the spirit on, toughen it. Artists do; I don't mean you need to live in a rat hole or gutter, but you have to learn fortitude, endurance. Only vegetables are always happy."
    ~~ William Faulkner [1897-1962]

    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
    ~~ Theodore Roosevelt [1858-1919]

    "Becoming the champion is often the luck of the draw, but being a contender, a somebody with promise, is about hard work and character."
    ~~ Robert Lipsyte

    "Part of being sane is being a little bit crazy."
    ~~ Janet Long

    "Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done and why. Then do it."
    ~~ Robert A. Heinlein [1907-88]

    "The way to succeed is to double your failure rate."
    ~~ Thomas J. Watson [1874-1956], founder of I.B.M.

    "College isn't the place to go for ideas."
    ~~ Helen Keller [1880-1968]

    "It is never too late to start early."
    ~~ Anonymous

    "Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work."
    ~~ Peter Drucker [1909-2005]

    "Whether you think you can, or that you can't, you are usually right."
    ~~ Henry Ford [1863-1947]

    "If you don't know where you're going, you'll probably end up someplace else."
    ~~ Yogi Berra

    "If you always do what you have always done then you'll always have what you've already got."
    ~~ Anthony Robbins

    "Science is everything we understand well enough to explain to a computer. Art is everything else."
    ~~ Donald Knuth

    "Don't worry about people stealing an idea. If it's original, you will have to ram it down their throats."
    ~~ Howard Aiken [1900-73]

    "He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life."
    ~~ Muhammad Ali

    "If everything's under control, you're going too slow."
    ~~ racecar driver Mario Andretti

    "Even if you are on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there."
    ~~ Will Rogers [1879-1935]

    "Even when people are more successful than they had imagined, nothing is ever achieved without giving something up."
    ~~ Dr. Judith M. Bardwick

    "Education is not the filling of a pail, it's the lighting of a fire."
    ~~ Irish poet William Butler Yeats [1865-1939]

    Prudens quaestio dimidium scientiae
    (To know what to ask is already to know half)
    ~~ Aristotle [384-322 B.C.E.]

    "Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion."
    ~~ Cyril Northcote Parkinson [1909-93] (aka "Parkinson's Law")

    "Chance favors the trained mind."
    ~~ Louis Pasteur [1822-95]

    "The value of the average conversation could be enormously improved by the constant use of four simple words: 'I do not know.'"
    ~~ André Maurois [1885-1967]

    Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur
    (Whatever is said in Latin sounds profound)
    ~~ Anonymous

    "If you believe the doctors, nothing is wholesome; if you believe the theologians, nothing is innocent; if you believe the military, nothing is safe."
    ~~ Lord Salisbury [1830-1903]

    "One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man."
    ~~ Elbert Hubbard [1859-1915]

    "The sooner you fall behind, the more time you will have to catch up."
    ~~ comedian Steven Wright

    "As an adolescent I aspired to lasting fame, I craved factual certainty, and I thirsted for a meaningful vision of human life – so I became a scientist. This is like becoming an archbishop so you can meet girls."
    ~~ Matt Cartmill, PhD

    "At age 65, this gettin' old thing is gettin' old."
    ~~ G.E. Nordell

    "Science is like sex: sometimes something useful comes out, but that is not the reason we are doing it."
    ~~ Richard P. Feynman [1918-88]

    "The bigger the goal, the bigger the obstacle. The bigger the obstacle, the bigger the achievement. So blame the failure not on obstacles but on the absence of relentless effort"
    ~~ Dr. Ravi Batra

    "There is an art to science, and science in art; the two are not enemies, but different aspects of the whole."
    ~~ Isaac Asimov [1920-92]

    "This is my way. What is your way? THE way doesn't exist."
    ~~ Friedrich Nietzsche [1844-1900]

    "640K ought to be enough for anybody."
    ~~ Bill Gates, in 1981

    "Hopelessness springs eternal."
    ~~ Ben Greenman

    "Work is much more fun than fun."
    ~~ Noël Coward [1899-1973]

    "In The Field, there is no Soap Opera; Soap Opera occurs only In The Stands. And the same for Gossip."
    ~~ G.E. Nordell

    "To be a writer one learns to live like one."
    ~~ Saul Bellow [1915-2005]

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

    Monday, April 12, 2010

    April 2010 Quotations

    "In times of change, the Patriot is a scarce man; brave, hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, however, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a Patriot."
    ~~ Mark Twain [1835-1910]

    "Don't let so much reality into your life that there's no room left for dreamin'."
    ~~ Texas Bix Bender

    "The time has come for us to stand up for the American people and to hold the insurance companies accountable."
    ~~ Congressman Martin Heinrich [Dem NM-01]

    "Sartre preferred reading serie noir crime novels to Marleau-Ponty, and who could blame him?"
    ~~ Gary Indiana (in Los Angeles Times Times Book Review)

    "It's a small world, but I wouldn't want to have to paint it."
    ~~ comedian Steven Wright

    "Insist on yourself; never imitate. Every great man is unique."
    ~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson [1803-82]

    "The permanent temptation of life is to confuse dreams with reality. The permanent defeat of life comes when dreams are surrendered to reality."
    ~~ James A. Michener [1907-97]

    "The more things are forbidden, the more popular they become."
    ~~ Mark Twain [1835-1910]

    "The true artist helps the world by revealing mystic truths."
    ~~ neon art piece by Bruce Nauman

    "Youth is easily deceived because it is quick to hope."
    ~~ Aristotle [384-322 B.C.E.]

    "History happens only once."
    ~~ John Cassidy

    "Be careful to leave your sons well-instructed rather than rich, for the hopes of the instructed are better than the wealth of the ignorant."
    ~~ Epictetus [55-135 A.D.]

    "There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you."
    ~~ Maya Angelou

    "There are idiots. Look around."
    ~~ economist Lawrence Summers

    "When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, [then] the truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic."
    ~~ Dresden James

    "The growing wealth aquired by [corporations] never fails to be a source of abuses."
    ~~ President James Madison [1751-1836]

    "Never do anything against conscience -- even if the state demands it."
    ~~ Albert Einstein [1879-1955]

    "Why not go out on a limb? That's where the fruit is."
    ~~ Will Rogers [1879-1935]

    "More often than not 'fair' and 'balanced' may be mutually exclusive."
    ~~ Neal Gabler, in Los Angeles Times op-ed

    "When it comes to the news, the corporate view is `objective', all else is `propaganda'."
    ~~ Studs Terkel [1912-2008]

    "Politics is supposed to be the second oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first."
    ~~ President Ronald Reagan [1911-2004]

    "Yes, our regulatory agencies are incompetent. But they are incompetent by design."
    ~~ writer David Goldstein

    "The propagandist's purpose is to make one set of people forget that certain other sets of people are human."
    ~~ Aldous Huxley [1894-1963]

    "When one hundred million people don't vote, the nation is not bitterly divided. The nation mostly doesn't give a sh*t."
    ~~ Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone writer

    "The World is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion."
    ~~ Thomas Paine [1737-1809]

    "You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore."
    ~~ Cesar E. Chavez [1927-93], in 1984

    "Truth is like the sun. You can shut it out for a time, but it ain't going away."
    ~~ Elvis Presley [1935-77]

    "Democracy is based upon the conviction that there are extraordinary possibilities in ordinary people."
    ~~ Harry Emerson Fosdick [1878-1969]

    "Our tradition is one of protest and revolt, and it is stultifying to celebrate the rebels of the past, while we silence the rebels of the present."
    ~~ Henry Steele Commager [1902-98]

    “What good is having the right to sit at a lunch counter if you can't afford to buy a hamburger?"
    ~~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. [1929-68]

    "It's time for Congress to go cold turkey and stop feeding at the lobbyist-funded trough."
    ~~ U.S. Senator Russ Feingold [Dem-WI]

    "Can any of you seriously say the Bill of Rights could get through Congress today? It wouldn't even get out of committee."
    ~~ F. Lee Bailey

    "Capitalism has defeated communism. It is now well on its way to defeating democracy."
    ~~ David Korten

    "It is not only what we do, but also what we do not do, for which we are accountable."
    ~~ Molière [1622-73]

    "I figured out why carbon credits seem like a bad idea: It is like an overweight person paying a friend to go to the gym and exercise for them."
    ~~ G.E. Nordell

    "Anyone who has Republican parents should run away from home."
    ~~ radio talk show host Mike Malloy

    "Anyone who doesn't believe in miracles isn't a realist."
    ~~ Billy Wilder [1906-2002]

    "The history of our country is a history of slaveowner against slave, landlord against tenant, corporation against worker, rich against poor."
    ~~ Howard Zinn [1922-2010], in 2006

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

    Monday, March 29, 2010

    News Factoids January-March 2010

    "Median household income in 2000 was $52,500; in 2008, it was $50,303."
    ~~ Time Magazine

    In 2008, the Dow fell nearly 34%, the worst since 1931; the S&P was down 38.5%, the worst since 1937.

    "The stock market is down 26 percent since 2000. (Inflation-adjusted, it's even worse.)"
    ~~ Time Magazine, Nov 2009

    "There are six times as many Americans seeking work as there are job openings."
    ~~ Paul Krugman, New York Times, Nov 2009

    "The Bureau of Labor Statistics employment-to-population ratio of 80.6 percent in November 2009 is the lowest since B.L.S. began keeping track in 1948."
    ~~ Time Magazine

    "One recent survey shows that 44 percent of U.S. families experienced a job loss, a reduction in hours, or a pay cut in the past year."
    ~~ Don Peck, The Atlantic Magazine, March 2010

    Want to know where you can move your checking and savings accounts away from the Big Banks? Check out free website

    "In November [2009], 19.4 percent of all men [in the U.S.] in their prime working years of 25 to 54 did not have jobs, the highest figure since the Bureau of Labor Statistics began tracking the statistic in 1948."
    ~~ The Atlantic Magazine

    "Twenty-four percent of U.S. workers between 18 & 34 do not earn enough to pay monthly bills, up 10 percent from 1999."
    ~~ per AFL-CIO 2009 survey

    "The average amount of equity that Americans have in their homes has dropped from 59 percent in 2005 to 41 percent [in 2009], by far the lowest level on record."
    ~~ Newsweek Magazine

    A young worker at a local Burger King volunteered the information that their most popular menu item is the Dollar Menu.

    Over 100 U.S. banks failed in 2009 (the last time was in 1992, during the Bush 41 administration), which emptied the coffers of the F.D.I.C.

    On 21 January 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court struck another blow for fascism and against freedom & liberty in the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. case reversing a full century of election campaign finance restrictions on the ability of corporations to purchase any elected office that they want. The principle that they stood for is "One million dollers, one vote".

    "I figured out why carbon credits seem like a bad idea: It is like an overweight person paying a friend to go to the gym and exercise for them."
    ~~ G.E. Nordell

    Wealthy motor-mouth Sarah Palin's grandchild is receiving federal A.D.C. (Aid to Dependent Children) money.
    ~~ per several news reports

    On 9 March 2010, Limp Rushbaugh threatened to leave the country if ObamaCare passed in Congress. Bye-bye, dirtbag, and good riddance.

    "With only half of taxpayers having filed thus far, refunds are already up nearly 10% from last year, thanks to a broad array of tax cuts in the [American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009]."
    ~~ U.S. Congressman Martin Heinrich [Dem NM-01]

    "U.S. schools rank 32nd internationally in math scores, tenth in science, and 12th in reading."
    ~~ Time Magazine, January 2010

    "The U.S. incarcerates 25 percent of the world's prisoners while having only 5 percent of the total population."
    ~~ Peter Stoup of Wisconsin

    Modern Consumerism: There is now a $30 hearing aid disguised as a Bluetooth earpiece.

    Not a lot of labor union activity out here in the boonies, and New Mexico does not have an overtime law. (California law is time-and-a-half after 8 hours in the day, or after 40 hours in the week.) The result here is many obviously worn-out workers at the local grocery and several local fast-food stores. The cashier at Taco Bell was dead on her feet and could barely make change, and co-workers in the back were way behind, and no manager in sight. (Current corporate policy seems to be to burn the workers out and throw them away, the next in line will beg to obey the corporate slave-masters.)

    "The U.S. Brder Patrol has almost 17,500 agents stationed along the southern border, or the equivalent of 8.8 agents per linear mile."
    ~~ A.C.L.U. of New Mexico

    Recently discovered the incubator platform for independent film, music and other artisitic and community projects. Artists who join can then seek funding, collaboration, distribution – whatever is needed to realize the project. And IndieGoGo just acquired the online distributor which will (for a fee) add your video content to the iTunes and-or Amazon Video-On-Demand and-or Netflix Watch Instantly streaming sites, and then pay royalties on sales.
    IndieGoGo official websiteDistribber official website

    "There are 600 coal-fired power plants in America, as against a hundred nuclear-powered ones."
    ~~ The Atlantic Magazine

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

    Wednesday, March 10, 2010

    March 2010 Quotations

    "You should never wear your best trousers when you go out to fight for freedom and truth."
    ~~ Henrik Ibsen [1928-1906], in "An Enemy of The People" (1888)

    "The next step [in a Fascist movement] is to fascinate fools and muzzle the intelligent, by emotional excitement on the one hand and terrorism on the other."
    ~~ Bertrand Russell [1872-1970]

    "Since Ronald Reagan's presidency, Americans have consumed more than we produced and have made up the difference by borrowing."
    ~~ Fareed Zakaria

    "All those who believe in psychokinesis, raise my hand."
    ~~ comedian Steven Wright

    "Thinking begins only when we have come to know that reason, glorified for centuries, is the stiff-necked adversary of thought."
    ~~ Martin Heidegger [1889-1976]

    "The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well."
    ~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson [1803-82]

    "Scientists dream about doing great things. Engineers do them."
    ~~ James A. Michener [1907-97]

    "The only rules comedy can tolerate are those of taste, and the only limitations those of libel."
    ~~ James Thurber [1894-1961]

    "Sell a man a fish, he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish, you ruin a wonderful business opportunity."
    ~~ Karl Marx [1818-83]

    "About half the practice of a decent lawyer consists in telling would-be clients that they are damned fools and should stop."
    ~~ Elihu Root [1845-1937]

    "I ain't Martin Luther King. I don't need a dream. I have a plan."
    ~~ filmmaker Spike Lee

    "The Buddhist approach is 'Don't just do something, sit there'."
    ~~ cartoonist Brian Crane

    "Ruin in its worst form is inevitable if our national life brings us nothing better than swollen fortunes for the few and the triumph in both politics and business of a sordid and selfish materialism."
    ~~ former U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt [1858-1919], in August 1910 speech

    "The wastebasket is a writer's best friend"
    ~~ Isaac Bashevis Singer [1902-91]

    "It's a writer's job to carve with language, to hew close to the bone."
    ~~ Stephen King

    "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."
    ~~ Mark Twain [1835-1910]

    "Barbarism is the natural state of mankind. Civilization is unnatural. It is a whim of circumstance. And barbarism must always ultimately triumph."
    ~~ Robert E. Howard [1906-36], in "Beyond The Black River"

    "it is the chief value of legend to mix up the centuries while preserving the sentiment."
    ~~ G.K. Chesterton [1874-1936], in "The Ballad of The White Horse"

    “The Revolution is never over, the Class War is perpetual – which side are you on?”
    ~~ G.E. Nordell

    "A nation without the means of reform is without means of survival."
    ~~ Edmund Burke [1729-1797]

    "I believe ... that all the measures of the Government are directed to the purpose of making the rich richer and the poor poorer."
    ~~ U.S. President William Henry Harrison [1773-1841], on 10 October 1840

    "Understanding is the booby prize."
    ~~ Werner Erhard

    "Here's the best truth [that] I know for certain: Never attribute to 'evil' that which you can chalk up to ineptitude."
    ~~ author Harlan Ellison

    "All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better."
    ~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

    "I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happen to them all."
    ~~ Judeo-Christian Bible, Ecclesiastes 9:11

    "It may be that the race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong – but that is the way to bet."
    ~~ Damon Runyon [1880-1946]

    "Invention, my dear friends, is 93% perspiration, 6% electricity, 4% evaporation, and 2% butterscotch ripple."
    ~~ Willy Wonka (character created by Roald Dahl [1916-90])

    "When you cannot make up your mind which of two evenly balanced courses of action you should take, choose the bolder."
    ~~ William Joseph Slim [1891-1970]

    "Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them."
    ~~ Wm. Shakespeare [1564-1616], in "Twelfth Night" (Act II, Scene 5)

    "The wise make proverbs and fools repeat them."
    ~~ Isaac D'Israeli [1766-1848]

    "The gods too are fond of a joke."
    ~~ Aristotle [384-322 B.C.E.]

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