Monday, April 23, 2018

Hannity's real estate empire funded by HUD

He bought "discounted and foreclosed properties as investment tools through shell companies, all the while receiving support from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. [...] Those mortgage loans, which, according to the Guardian, were acquired through HUD’s National Housing Act, offered investors protection against loan defaults when purchasing rental properties." I.e., Hannity built a real estate fortune by accepting government welfare.

Some of Tesla's detestable practices

From this FB post:

"Tesla Motors claims to be the future of electric cars. But in many ways the company and its ruthless union-busting boss Elon Musk resemble the auto industry's grisly past, before the rise of modern labor rights. And now, in a new investigation by Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting and KQED News, it's been revealed that Tesla has been ignoring century-old safety norms adopted by the rest of the auto industry, not providing enough training, and faking its safety numbers in order to avoid regulations and cut costs.

"The reports are staggering. Tesla has, among other things, not painted bright yellow hazard lines on its factory floors (the industry standard) because Musk doesn't like the color yellow; left workers injured on the job homeless due to insufficient workers' compensation; and marked workers' injuries it should have reported to regulators as 'minor first aid' incidents and personal health problems in order to artificially deflate their safety numbers. The company has since denounced the journalists and whistleblowers behind this investigation as 'extremists.' Musk, needless to say, was not so long ago a close ally of the Trump administration, which has repeatedly threatened to crack down on journalism.

"Take the time to listen to the voices of Tesla's workers -- and the reptilian excuses of their bosses -- in this episode of the Reveal podcast."

Hartmann, the 2nd Amendment and slave patrols

In this article Hartmann lays out how slave patrols were the "well-regulated militia" in the south, which were used to round up runaway slaves. He cites Carl T. Bogus' work "The hidden history of the 2nd Amendment," as well as Hadden's book on slave patrols. Here's Bogus discussing the topic in 2013, where he concludes: "And, yes, I remain convinced of its thesis."

Dump's Cabinet plots Christian theocracy

I know, it sounds like some fake news, crazed liberal conspiracy theory. But this real news report verifies that several members of Dump's Cabinet attend a weekly Bible study meeting with "Pastor Ralph Drollinger, a controversial right-wing pastor who preaches a message promoting a conservative Christian theocracy for the U.S." 

"Vice President Mike Pence, HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, Energy Secretary Rick Perry, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, CIA Director Mike Pompeo, nominee for Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, HHS Secretary Tom Price, and Scott Pruitt, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, have all sponsored the Capitol Ministries Cabinet Bible study, according to literature put out by Capitol Ministries."

Drollinger is strongly anti-women, anti-gay and anti-Catholic, as well as finding social welfare programs demonic. He's written a book explicitly promoting a Christian government. Christian ISIS is here and now in our own Cabinet. 

See their web page where they openly admit to the above.

Socialists are running for office

And proud to be identified with the socialist label. It's high time we socialists take back the word and reframe it to its true meaning. We have to win the meme war by taking back words appropriated by the Repugnantans, like freedom and patriot. Instead of running away from these words we need to do the opposite and re-own them with clear, adamant voices. And either run for office under its banner, or fully support those who do. Now is the time, as more and more people, especially the young, are coming to realize the reality and benefits of socialism. See the DSA site for some sample issues.

Today is the Christian Rapture

According to this loony tune. Lord I hope these wackadoodles are scooped up to their eternal reward and leave us and the planet alone.

Results of the Dump tax scam

See Occupy Democrats video here. Some samples since the tax scam passed:

Sears has closed 63 stores.
KMart closed 45 stores.
Macy's closed 68 stores.
Sam's Club closed 63 stores.
Kimberly Clark fired >5000 workers

See the link for more on how Dump is Making America Great Again for the rich but not at all for the rest of us.

Dump inspires and condones hate speech

See this article. Hate speech against people has always been around. But since Dump at least some of that speech specifically names Dump as justification. "Immediately after the election, there was a surge in Trump-related taunts. But all last year and into this year, the threats kept coming." Dump has given permission for hate speech to come out of the closet and be not only blatant but proud about it. See the link for several examples.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Lujan Grisham votes with Repugs on banks

Indeed she did, this candidate for New Mexico Governor. Not only Sanders and Warren voted against this bank deregulation but so did 102 other Dems including New Mexican Rep. Ben Ray Lujan. After the '08 crash Dodd-Frank required banks with assets over $50 billion to undergo financial stress tests. The Bill purports that it affects too many small, community banks so it raised the threshold to $250 billion. But there are few small banks that have that amount of assets, so in effect it is letting bigger banks off the hook from regulatory scrutiny.

Why did she do it? According to Sen. Joe Cervantes, also a candidate for NM Governor: "Unfortunately it’s no surprise Congresswoman Lujan Grisham chose bankers over New Mexicans. She has accepted $2,140,024 from political action committees and over $100,000 from lobbyists."

I asked Lujan Grisham if she would refuse PAC or corporate money and it's no surprise she has not answered. Progressives must demand that their candidates refuse corporate money because these otherwise good candidates are easily and inevitably corrupted like this case in point.

Why I left academic philosophy

Great article highlighting many of the reason I dropped out of graduate school to get a good paying job helping people. Some excerpts with which I particularly resonate.

"Have you ever spent two years pouring your heart and soul into a project that only three people will ever see? In academia, we call that your 'dissertation.' [...] Nobody reads this stuff because most of the journals are behind paywalls so expensive that only large libraries at academic institutions can afford to access them."

"But I think the ultimate sin is that academic philosophy is filled with people — mostly men — who spend a lot of time talking about things that are almost entirely abstracted from the pragmatic realities of human existence. [...] How could I justify this exuberance of abstraction when there were so many real-world problems that needed the minds of intelligent people?"

"I don’t need academic philosophy to do philosophy. Blogging over the past ten years, I’ve reached a larger audience than I could have ever hoped to find through the traditional academic journal system. And that’s ultimately why I dropped out: it was holding me back."