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

Monday, December 26, 2016

News Factoids for Fourth Quarter 2016

An excellent article in The Washington Post shows how far the country is moving toward becoming an Oligarchy: just ten donors poured more than $1.1 billion into super PACs in the 2016 election alone.

Half of the guns in the U.S.A. are owned by 3 percent of the people, with an average of 17 guns each, while only 22% of the U.S. population own a gun.

Because of the G.O.P.'s defunding of health clinics and of sex education in the schools, syphilis rose 19% to 24,000 cases for the year, gonorrhea is up 13% to 400,000 cases, and clamydia is up 6% to 1.5 million cases.

U.S. coffee consumption pushed global demand to a new record high, and coffee drinkers 19-34 now account for 44% of U.S. coffee consumption.

Official New Mexico results: 804,043 voters cast ballots in November, or 62.4 percent of the 1,289,414 voters who were registered in time to vote in the general election.

Worldwide economic stagnation: Across 25 of the world’s advanced economies, about two-thirds of the population – more than half a billion people – earn the same as or less than their peers did a decade ago.
— per Wall Street Journal and a July 2016 study by the Mckinsey Global Institute

Arctic in crisis: A report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (N.O.A.A.) shows that in 2016 the Arctic experienced the warmest land temperatures on record, the lowest snow cover on record, and the lowest fall sea-ice cover on record.
— TIME Magazine 12/2016

Copyright 2016 by G.E. Nordell, all rights reserved

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

G.O.P. Health Plan for 2017

The fascist Republican Party will control all three branches of the U.S. federal government in a few weeks. They have long been trying to destroy ObamaCare (the Affordable Care Act of March 2010), they have already seriously defunded sex education and public health services (syphilis is up 19% as a result), and the A.L.E.C. group funded by the Koch Brothers is passing state and local laws to criminalize abortion, i.e. eliminate a woman's choice in her own health care.

Well, that moves society back to the options of the 1950s. I grew up in the (then) white-bread town of Culver City, which is in West Los Angeles, California. The widely-known secret solution when some teenager got pregnant was to ask around for The Phone Number of someone in Tijuana, find the cash to pay for it, then cross the border to Mexico and hope that the girl survives the expedition. (Depending on the situation, the male might or might not be told, and then might or might not participate.)

So American society is regressing to 1950s-style health care.

The Republican Party health plan for 2017 is this:

Copyright 2016 by G.E. Nordell, all rights reserved

Thursday, December 01, 2016

November 2016 Quotations (54)

"Donald Trump won, America lost."
~~ G.E. Nordell

"The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in the insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."
~~ Justice Louis D. Brandeis [1856-1941]

"A man ought to study philosophy, up to the point of looking on generals and donkey-drivers in the same light."
~~ Cynic philosopher Crates of Thebes (365?-285? BCE), quoted by Greek historian Diogenes Laërtius [Third Century AD]

"The secret of life is to appreciate the pleasure of being terribly, terribly deceived."
~~ Oscar Wilde [1854-1900]

“Circumstances are the rulers of the weak; they are but the instruments of the wise.”
~~ Samuel Lover [1797-1868]

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

"Worse than telling a lie is spending the rest of your life staying true to a lie."
~~ blogger Robert Brault

"Oy f*@#king vey!"
~~ New Yorker Magazine cartoonist David Sipress

"What if the purpose of business is creativity, not wealth extraction?"
~~ media entrepreneur John Battelle

"Pray for the dead, fight like hell for the living."
~~ labor leader Mary Harris 'Mother' Jones [1837-1930]

"So the people have spoken, giving the finger to the Washington Consensus and electing an admitted sexual predator and proven prevaricator so lacking in impulse control that he spent the early morning hours of one day cyberbullying a beauty pageant contestant he had once humiliated in person. Strike up 'Hail to the Chief'."
~~ journalist Lou Dubose

"Silence can be either protest or consent, but most times it's fear."
~~ poet & novelist Paul Beatty

“There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad.”
~~ George Orwell [1903-50], in his 1949 novel "1984"

“Tomorrow is always fresh, with no mistakes in it yet.”
~~ L.M. (Lucy Maud) Montgomery, OBE [1874-1942] of Canada, in "Anne of Green Gables" [1908]

“Oh God, the terrible tyranny of the majority. We all have our harps to play. And it’s up to you to know with which ear you’ll listen.”
~~ Ray Bradbury [1920-2012], in his 1953 novel "Fahrenheit 451"

“And know that you don’t have to be perfect, you can be good.”
~~ John Steinbeck [1902-68], in his 1952 novel "East of Eden"

“Forgiving isn’t something you do for someone else. It’s something you do for yourself. It’s saying, ‘You’re not important enough to have a stranglehold on me.’ It’s saying, ‘You don’t get to trap me in the past. I am worthy of a future.’”
~~ novelist Jodi Picoult, in the 2013 novel "The Storyteller"

“If clouds are blocking the sun, there will always be a silver lining that reminds me to keep on trying.”
~~ Matthew Quick, in the 2008 novel "The Silver Linings Playbook"

“Adversity is like a strong wind. It . . . tears away from us all but the things that cannot be torn, so that afterward we see ourselves as we really are, and not merely as we might like to be.”
~~ Arthur Golden, in the 1997 novel "Memoirs of A Geisha"

“Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.”
~~ Haruki Murakami

“Be good, be young, be true! Evil is nothing but vanity, let us have the pride of good, and above all let us never despair.”
~~ Alexander Dumas, fils [1824-95], in "The Lady of The Camellias" [1848]

“Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic.”
~~ Frank Herbert [1920-86], in the novel "Dune" [1965]

“I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life.”
~~ F. Scott Fitzgerald [1896-1940], in the 1925 novel "The Great Gatsby"

“As long as you live, there’s always something waiting; and even if it’s bad, and you know it’s bad, what can you do? You can’t stop living.”
~~ Truman Capote [1924-84], in the 1966 novel "In Cold Blood"

“You still have a lot of time to make yourself be what you want. There’s still lots of good in the world.”
~~ S.E. Hinton, in the 1967 novel "The Outsiders"

“None of those other things makes a difference. Love is the strongest thing in the world, you know. Nothing can touch it. Nothing comes close. If we love each other we’re safe from it all. Love is the biggest thing there is.”
~~ David Guterson, in the 1994 novel "Snow Falling On Cedars"

“We must all face the choice between what is right and what is easy.”
~~ J.K. Rowling, in the 2000 novel "Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire"

“It doesn’t matter who you are or what you look like, so long as somebody loves you.”
~~ Roald Dahl [1916-90], in "The Witches" [1983]

“Sanity is a valuable possession; I hoard it the way people once hoarded money. I save it, so [that] I will have enough, when the time comes.”
~~ Margaret Atwood, in the 1985 novel "The Handmaid’s Tale"

“The dupe of friendship, and the fool of love; have I not reason to hate and to despise myself? Indeed I do; and chiefly for not having hated and despised the world enough.”
~~ British critic William Hazlitt [1778-1830]

"Hang on to your hat. Hang on to your hope. And wind the clock, for tomorrow is another day."
~~ writer E.B. White [1899-1985]

"Everybody now seems to be talking about democracy. I don't understand this. As I think of it, democracy isn't like a Sunday suit to be brought out and worn only for parades. It's the kind of life [that] a decent man leads, it's something to live for and to die for."
~~ screenwriter Dalton Trumbo [1905-76]

"Actually, the best gift [that] you could have given her was a lifetime of adventures . . ."
~~ Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) [1832-98], in the novel "Alice's Adventures In Wonderland" [1865]

“Each had his past shut in him like the leaves of a book known to him by heart; and his friends could only read the title.”
~~ British author Virginia Woolf [1882-1941], in her 1922 novel "Jacob’s Room"

"Sometimes the only choices [that] you have are bad ones, but you still have to choose."
~~ 12th Doctor Who

"Capitalism is not the system of the past; it is the system of the future - if mankind is to have a future."
~~ philosopher Ayn Rand [1905-82]

"No form of art goes beyond ordinary consciousness as film does, straight to our emotions, deep into the twilight room of the soul."
~~ cinema master Ingmar Bergman [1918-2007]

"When American voters say Congress is owned by big companies, this [so-called '21st Century Cures' Act] bill is exactly what they are talking about. Now, we face a choice. Will this Congress say that yes, we're bought and paid for, or will we stand up and work for the American people?"
~~ Sen. Elizabeth Warren, in a 'barnburner' floor speech on 28 November 2016

"I have done my work."
~~ last words of John Stuart Mill [1806-73]

"You're never too old to rock and roll if you're too young to die."
~~ Jethro Tull band (1976 song lyric)

"Great thinkers are there not for us to respect unquestioningly but rather to question respectfully."
~~ Thanh T. Nguyen

"We must have the courage to be intolerant of those who take advantage of democracy in order to destroy it."
~~ German academic & politician Carlo Schmid [1896-1979], in 1948

"In recent weeks, there's been an avalanche of evidence of our species' bottomless capacity for stupidity, savagery, and tribal hatred. An alarming number of our existing and would-be leaders have shown themselves to be clueless, corrupt, self-serving scoundrels and buffoons."
~~ William Falk, "The Week Magazine"

"There's one way to find out if a man is honest. Ask him. If he says 'yes', you know he is a crook."
~~ Groucho Marx [1890-1977]

"Liberty is not inherent in any form of government, it is in the heart of the free man."
~~ Jean-Jacques Rousseau [1712-78]

"Every tyrant from Mao to Perón rules in the name of the people; [this] claim does not lessen their suffering."
~~ Jill Lepore

"You're not just responsible for what you say. You are responsible for what people hear."
~~ retired U.S.A.F. General Michael Hayden

"There is only now."
~~ dancer George Balanchine [1904-83]

"Why is it that when we grab for heaven – socialist or capitalist or even religious – we so often produce hell."
~~ Margaret Atwood

"Reality is one of the possibilities [that] I cannot afford to ignore."
~~ Canadian songwriter Leonard Cohen [1934-2016]

"We experience pain and difficulty as failure instead of saying: I will pass thru this, everyone [that] I have ever admired has passed thru this, music has come out of this, literature has come out of it."
~~ novelist Marilynne Robinson

"Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much."
~~ Oscar Wilde [1854-1900]

"Politeness is an avowedly false coin, with which it is foolish to be stingy."
~~ Arthur Schopenhauer [1788-1860]

"As long as human beings aspire, they will be capable of corrupting the object of their aspiration."
~~ Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor

"If any two people could ever really get inside each other's head, it would scare the pee out of both of them."
~~ mystery author John D. MacDonald [1916-86]

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