Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Fire Trump part 2: the real reason for the Trump Band wagon

 photo Donald_Trump_by_Gage_Skidmore_zpscwtuf807.jpg

would you buy a used country
from this man?

Make no mistake there is a band wagon. Everyone knew Trump is an idiot but they kept flocking to his cause. Why? They common explanation is "he speaks his mind." As I pointed out before lots of people have spoken their minds and didn't get band wagons. The mind speaking thing is a dog whistle, its code. The translation of the code is the first of the real reasons for his groundswell. There are two reasons, this is the first one: because he says the nasty cruel Draconian things they wish they could say and do to those they fear. An extension of that is the hysteria he capitalizes on over illegal aliens, those brown illegal people taking all those sought after toilet cleaning jobs. The average person can't the bigoted things Trump can say, bur they wish they could. Now he says it for them, and they can applaud without owning up. Why is it Trump can say those things? That's related to the second reason.

Americans idolize the rich. No one without money could say the things Trump says. Any ordinary candidate would have wrecked his chances weeks ago. Rick Perry is an idiot and everyone knew it after his performance in 2012, Trump makes him seem intelligent by comparison. Yet Perry would never get away with saying the stuff Trump has, the proof is that he did not get away with milder statements. Since Americans idolize the rich we put them in a special exempt category and make all allowencs for them.

A lot of people think that if they are dedicated servants of the rich they will somehow be let in on things. They will get rich too. The rich don't want you to have money. They want it all for themselves. If there were any truth to the servant theory of gaining wealth the disparity between super rich and everyone else would not have grown as it has. Other motivations are related. Some don't go for the servant theory but they want things to favor the rich for when they make their fortunjes.

So now there's a groundswell and a bandwagon, just as with Reagan a guy who doesn't have the intellectual capacity to be dog catcher will be the most powerful man in the world. Trump is already one of the most powerful men. He will feel that nothing is beyond him. That will be the bend of social programs, millions will die before their time, no one will care because they will be jaded by Trump's value system that groups people into two camps, rich and losers. Thus the deaths of the poor will be accepted and even lauded as proper justice for those who committed the gravest sin, being poor.

Just as with Reagan, I know its coming. Mark my words and watch the news study the stats you will see life expectancy for the poor take a nose dive. It is coming. It will happen.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Fire Trump Before He Starts

Trump devolution photo donald-trump-cartoon1_zpsxmkoxoff.jpg
My friends in Canada will soon find me at their door. Met, Betta, I demand political asylum. Trump is now with in striking distance of Hilary, she is only 4 points ahead. This is a huge tragedy. Trump is an idiot, he's a member of the 1%. He's one of the guys Wallstreet needs taking back from. In 2012 Americans voted for Obama rejecting Romney because he seemed unable to relate to the problems of the common people. Yet they are totally oblivious to the fact that Trump was born into money, he's one of the richest men in America, he has never experienced the feelings most of us have about not seeing where the money will come from. His is not a rags to Riches story.

Pundits have said that people flock to his band wagon like lemings because he speaks his mind. They said it so many times people have began repeating it. Two things wrong with this. First, lots of people speak their minds. It's a total fallacy to think that Hillary and Sanders are not speaking their minds. Joan Baez spoke her mind, the Smother's brothers, Pete Seager and Muhammad Ali all spoke their minds, but they suffered for it. Secondly, the things Trump has been saying are moronic.

He said that prisoners of war are not heroes. Granted, if a prisoner conducts himself in a cowardly way and helps the enemy he/she is no hero. But the original context was about John McCain in Vietnam, he conducted himself admirably. He was clearly heroic. It's how one bears up in captivity not that one was captured that counts. Speaking your mind is one thing but saying stupid things because there is no mind there to speak is quite another. Moreover Trump had five deferments in the Vietnam years, while McCain volunteered to fight. See the article by Michael E. Miller comparing what the two di8d during those years.

Trump said he would bomb everyone in Iraq to get the oil. "I would bomb the hell out of the oil fiels in Iraq to fight Isis." He doesn't care who he kills. I am for fighting Isis but its insane to destroy Iraq to do it. Use the oil don't bomb it! We always think we have to destroy the village to save it. He also made statements painting most illegal aliens as criminals and rapists, "with a few good people."

He'a a bully who is so lacking in any substance at all. He responds to every criticism with name calling. All who disagree are "losers." His immigration program is silly.

NYT reports: After staking his early campaign on caustic and contentious remark
s about undocumented immigrants, Donald J. Trump on Sunday outlined his plan to fix the country’s immigration system and deal with people who are in the country illegally.

The position paper, published on Mr. Trump’s website, centered on three principles. The first stated that “a nation without borders is not a nation” — a theme Mr. Trump has made a constant in his stump speeches — and called for a wall to be built along the southern border.

He also repeated his promise to make Mexico pay for the wall and laid out how he would do it: largely through increasing fees on border movement between the United States and Mexico.

“We will not be taken advantage of anymore,” the plan states.

He's not going to make Mexico pay for the wall. Increasing fees on boarder movement might just make more people try the illegal way, or just over less. Walls never work. Great wall of China did not keep the Mongols out. Berlin wall did not keep everyone in nor did it last. Taking money from the aliens so they can't send it home would mean opening mail, and they get the money for real toil and labor. They still take the jobs no one wants. The American fruit industry wou8ld not survive without them.

One of the more insane aspects of his plan is the paranoid acuzation that illegals are flooding the boarders because of a plot by the Mexican government.
(Ibid NYT above) The crimes committed by undocumented immigrants have been a focus of Mr. Trump’s early campaign. He has accused Mexico of sending criminals and rapists to the United States, and has often infuriated Latinos with his remarks.

In his formal policy, as he has many times before, Mr. Trump maintains that “Mexico’s leaders have been taking advantage of the United States by using illegal immigration to export the crime and poverty in their own country.”

That's a peranoid idea started back in the 90s by the Arian Nations to work up fear and panic about foreigners. Its been brewing for a long time. I knew people into that back in the 80s. I don't know where Trump got it but it was coming up from Tax revolt groups and right wing extremists. If there were any truth to it Mexico should have done nothing or worked to increase the flow of children into the US. In fact, according to pew research Mexico helped reduce the flow.

The hysteria over illegal immigration is based upon the historical tendency to scapegoat immigrants when times are bad:

Historians have noted a strong correlation between large migrations of foreigners to the United States and increased acts of violence against immigrants. For example, riots and violence erupted in Philadelphia in the mid-1800s following a large influx of Irish Catholic immigrants. The KKK peaked in the 1920s with approximately five million members, at the time lessening its focus on African-Americans and shifting its attention to Catholic and Jewish immigrants. In Texas, during the 1980s, a Klan group systematically harassed and attacked Vietnamese fishermen in an effort to put them out of business and drive them from the town.

The imagined crisis over job loss is laughable. Commentary in Orlando Sentinal:
And, yes, they are taking jobs away from some hardworking folks who are U.S. citizens. But for the most part, they are simply taking jobs that no one else wants. Example: After a federal raid on the Swift plant in Iowa, a strong majority of Caucasians displaced a strong majority of Hispanics in the work force. The turnover rate then soared from 30 percent to 114 percent.

The Pew Hispanic Center, a nonpartisan group, estimates that in 2005, illegal immigrants accounted for 24 percent of farm workers, 17 percent of cleaning workers and 14 percent of construction workers.

It's easy to beat up on the disenfranchised, especially when they can't speak the language and may be here illegally, trying to make a better life for themselves. So we humiliate them every which way, from employers who pay them less than minimum wage, to the vigilantes who try to rustle them up as if they were rabid cattle on a rampage.

Illegal immigrants in production and consruction have been falling since 2007 due to stresses of US economy:

(Pew ResearchBy Jeffrey S. Passel and D’Vera Cohn)
In a reflection of changes in the overall economy since the Great Recession, the U.S. unauthorized immigrant workforce now holds fewer blue-collar jobs and more white-collar ones than it did before the 2007-2009 recession, but a solid majority still works in low-skilled service, construction and production occupations, according to new Pew Research Center estimates.

Trump is capitalizing on the hysteria for his own ego. He saysthe country is goint to hell. That is insane, things are not perfect a lot of people still having hard times but we are much better off now than we were in 2008.

Trump is not popular because he speaks his mind. That is code its a dog whistle. I'll tell you the real reason in part 2.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Anti-Miminum Wage Contra Statism?

Originally posted at dpsst25.

I recently had a chance to observe some comments on social media when someone posted something supporting an increase in the national minimum wage in the United States. The reactions included claims of socialism as well as fears of creeping statism in the name of compassion.

Rather than getting into an extended debate over the issue, which rarely has any potential or opportunity for serious or legitimate discussion on places like Facebook, I chose to pose the following questions instead:

1A: Is anything that questions neoclassic economic theory and neoliberal economic policy automatically now labeled "socialist", and, is that supposed to be a warning or fear marker rather than a policy critique?

2A: Is the potential loss of jobs for youth entering the workplace worth more than the well-being and dignity of those who need to support themselves and their families at minimum wage jobs?

2B: As a corollary to the last question, is the only money in play from a low wage worker-vs low wage worker in a zero sum game, or is it OK to look at the money in CEO salaries and corporate profits as part of the equation as well?

3A: Does anyone disagree that the current legal and cultural climate sets up corporations as somewhat amoral "persons" whose primary overriding goal and responsibility is to increase the monetary value of the business to shareholders?

3B: Do the potential employee and employer represent two individuals with equal power who meet face to face to discuss the social and monetary value of the employee's labor, the value of the employer's business, capital, and product, and what a fair and livable arrangement would be in terms of work schedule, salary, benefits, and so on until a mutually satisfactory arrangement is reached and legally bound in a contract?

3C: If not, what forms of recourse should a current or potential employee have to counter the ability of the employer to demand more value from the worker's labor than the worker receives in useful compensation? To arbitrate a fair and livable arrangement?

3D: Is not the goal of immediate, short-term corporate profit and the power of the employer relative to the worker going to tend toward lower wages, fewer benefits, and an unfair and unlivable arrangement?  Do not labor unions and legal protections help to balance out the interests of such myopic profit motives?

3E: Are there not corporations and cooperative-based businesses that pursue long-term benefit to community and worker above the profit motive yet still make money? If so, why shouldn't the legal and cultural climate favoring the less generous and sustainable business practices be criticized, restricted, and ultimately replaced?

3F: For those who favor the libertarian style solution to corrupt and unfair business practice, do you assume that employee and employer have equal power? That the employee has multiple readily available options of equal value to choose from? That these choices, if they exist, do not carry additional burdens? That being fired (for objecting to workplace conditions or questioning compensation) or quitting in protest has no social repercussions and no effect on gaining future employment (especially in the same industry)? And even if these things were true, is there no ethical obligation to those who must suffer until the situation resolves itself by such Laissez-faire principles?

3G: If, based on the last question, workers do not have the social, cultural, and economic freedom to choose their way out of a bad employment situation (either doing so with great difficulty or peril or simply lacking any viable options), or if it is not ethical to let people suffer until Laissez-faire principles eventually intercede and improve working conditions and employment options, does not the government have the obligation to intervene? Especially since the welfare of the people is one the primary duties of government in the US Constitution?

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Monday, November 11, 2013

Liberty and justice for all?

Originally posted at dpsst25.

At the end of a recent blog post I briefly mentioned ENDA, the Employee Non-Discrimination Act, which is making it's way through the US Senate. As the title of the bill suggests, the law prohibits workplace discrimination because of factors such as gender-identity and sexual orientation.

While the bill is going to pass the Senate and the President is ready to sign it, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, John Boehner, released a statement through a spokesperson last week declaring that he "believes this legislation will increase frivolous litigation and cost American jobs, especially small business jobs." Later his office added that Boehner believes the bill is unnecessary because such workplaces protections are already protected under existing law.

The claim that federal law already guarantees such protections is not tenable, and most states don't have such explicit protections. If such legal protections already existed, then the possibility of lawsuits for unfair labor practices based on gender and sexual orientation would also exist. So the two statements eat each other.

But let's get back to the initial press release. There are two important things that are being explicitly said.

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An Introductory Critique of Current Economic Philosophy

Originally posted at dpsst25.

Current economic philosophy is rooted in large measure in debates about human nature that took place between Scottish, English, French, and German philosophers between two and three hundred years ago.

Those individuals were echoing debates that have been going on for much longer, debates about whether humans are intrinsically "good" (caring, empathetic, generous, cooperative, altruistic, etc) or "evil" (indifferent, cruel, selfish, greedy, manipulative, etc), and to what degree external circumstances and choice could draw out or strengthen different social qualities.

Whether intentionally or accidentally evolved or imbued by some unseen force, humans have a capacity for various social states and qualities. In adaptive terms, this can be cast a conflict between gene-centric selection (focused on the immediate benefit of the individual) versus group-centric selection (focused on the benefit of individuals as part of a larger social collective).

Contemporary postmodern industrial societies tend to construct their economic perspective on 1) status/wealth as reward, 2) uncertainty of worthiness, 3) scarcity of virtue, 4) abundance of resources, and 5) belief in meritocracy. I'll review these briefly before challenging their effectiveness at creating a just society full of actualized and productive citizens.

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Monday, August 12, 2013

<a href="http://s15.photobucket.com/user/Metacrock/media/mauthner_zpsf3c7c662.jpg.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a361/Metacrock/mauthner_zpsf3c7c662.jpg" border="0" alt=" photo mauthner_zpsf3c7c662.jpg"/></a>

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Greatness has Left the Plantet: George McGovern Dies


In Memory George McGovern (July 19,1922-Oct 21, 2012)
"the Senator"

That's all my brother and I ever had to call him. We knew which Senator we meant. His ill fated Presidential bid in 1972 was our baptism of fire into the world of politics. No more egar, idealistic, stary eyed kids ever burned up the spare time of their sophomore high school year than us. My first crushing political defeat, so devastating it led to my first drunk (the defeat party) and my first hang over (which felt like death).

From the defeat party they dorve me to the home of some guy they knew in the Hill Crest area of Dallas. Upper middle class homes. I'm left in the car while they do in. This guy has an Eastern European name which I wont say but that night I was so drunk I could not say it. So I began wondering the neighborhood knocking on doors and going "is this Less snlorebloxk bosh kie house?" They had to track me down several houses down the way from where they left me.

McGovern was born July 19th, that day day keeps popping up in m life. Herbert Marcuse, another hero died on July 19th and that same July 19, 1979 the Nicaraguan revolution triumphed.


He was a bomber pilot in WWII, he flew a B-24 and was decorated for valor.. Elected to the senate from his native South Dakota in early 60s, he pushed a program of "food for peace," fighting communism by feeding the third world. The Senator was one of the first to speak against the war in Vietnam, a courageous pioneer who was mocked and ridiculed, labeled a communist but who stuck to his guns. When Robert Kennedy was assassinated McGovern was ask to stand in as the replacement candidate for his campaign.

He ran for President again in 84 or 88. and of cousre lost in the primaries and fairly early. He spent his last years in Eruope working for United Nations. See Los Angles Times coverage. McGovern was a Methodist when to a Wesleyan college on the GI bill after the war. He was an avid reader of philosophy and in his college days was taken with the works of Walter Rauschenbusch a leader in the "social Gospel" the forerunner movement of liberation theology.

 His 72 Campaign got off to a rocky start then went down hill. He said he was behind Egalton "a thousand percent." Then dropped him form the ticket when it was revealed he had been in a mental institution. He chose Kenndy bother-in-law R.Sargent Shriver (father of Maria) to replace Egalton. Everyone  began to say "O he just flip flopps all the time and can't make up his mind." Nixon, the master of atheist style campaigning, branded him a communist. People said "he's a wild eyed radical it would be a disaster if he was in." They never read his campagin literature, they didn't know his popsitons on anything. They were certain he was a dangerous radical. He changes his mind all the time. I had debats in every calss I was in. The other side was always stunned with how rational he sounded when I got through. No one changed their minds.

During the campaign I couldn't keep track of how many people said "it doesn't matter, that Watergate thing is no big deal." That next year after Watergate summer everyone said "O guess you were right." some said 'I guess I should have voted for McGovern after all." I lost count of how many people said I see you were right after all.

Just the way people are. they don't reason, they don't bother to learn the facts they just go along get along until it's too late then look to the past and go "we should have listened." But we are not going to listen now!

I think McGovern appealed to the Texan upbringing of my brother and I. We raised to admire the Alamo and the fight-to-the-death-for-your-beliefs mentality. That's what McGovern always symbolized for me. He was a symbol of my youthful idealism, my compassion or the oppressed, and the never say die fighting spirit that's willing to risk and lose all for higher beliefs.