Thursday, January 28, 2010

State Of The Onion

I have two quibbles with Mr. Obama, and his grandiloquent speech:

Nuclear energy, no matter how you package it, or play with it, or hyperbolize it, isn't "clean."


The second is, when you talk of all the Taliban, or Al Qaeda, or whatever you want to call them, that we've killed in 2009 vs. 2008, are you sure that's who you killed? And were civilians killed as well? Any kids?

Other than that, a pretty decent speech, and hopefully one that the Democrats are listening to. In one section, hs basically scolded the Senate and the Congress saying, "you've got the votes, use 'em."

And to all of these twits: if you continue to do things that are only politically expedient, you're going to be voted out of office.


I will read the whole transcript as carefully as I can and do some sort of analysis. Especially on the parts where he says [APPLAUSE]. I love those...

Monday, January 25, 2010

Addendumb to the Below

By the way, I forgot to mention this about the Supreme Court decision to let corporations rule the roost:

Now foreign-owned American companies can influence elections. If you're not happy about the Senator from Citibank, how about the Congressman from Dubai Investments, Ltd.? Or the President of Bin Laden Construction?

(by the way, all of these points were made, and made better, by Greg Palast, about a month ago, when this decision was still pending)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Sociopathic Politics

The Supreme Court has done it - they've made corporations people.

Welcome to the future election of the Senator from Citibank.

Thanks to the above link, Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad in 1896, the Supreme Court at the time ruled that corporations were allowed certain protections under the 14th amendment, because of what a court reporter noted in the header record of a decision that didn't talk about whether corporations are people. And in a different Supreme Court ruling on Buckley v. Valeo, they stated that the limiting of campaign contributions was, in fact, a limit on political speech, i.e., money equals speech.

I know, my reaction was "huh?", too...

So now, in their incredibly finite wisdom, the conservative majority of the Supreme Court has decided that corporations have the same rights as all of us real people. They can "talk" just as loudly as they want, because to do otherwise would be to restrict their rights as "citizens."

I don't know about you, but I've never seen a corporation vote.

Thus, corporations now have the right to contribute as much as they want to political campaigns, to particular candidates, or to particular issues. They can spend as much as they want on smears and disinformation, and they pay for the news to be broadcast as well. If AIG is paying for the fact-checking of what AIG is saying, who's to say whether AIG is lying?

There was a movie made a few years ago, a documentary entitled The Corporation. Essentially a series of case studies where the corporate model is held up to the mirror of psychoanalysis, and does not come off well. Corporations (large ones) tend to follow either a psychopathic or a sociopathic personality, i.e., there's no empathy, there's no real sense of community, and the driving force is (pretty much) greed. I know, duh, but...

A few years ago, a gentleman named Marc Kasky brought a lawsuit against Nike for lying about it's labor practices in Indonesia and Vietnam. Nike said this was protected speech under the 1st Amendment. They cited the Santa Clara v. SP Railroad decision. In other words, they could lie about whether they were mistreating their workers because it's "free speech, man!" The court ruled against them, calling it "commercial speech," which has to be factually accurate.

Would this court rule the same way, now?