What did Hillary Clinton tell the Wall Street bankers to earn millions in speaking fees

February 6, 2016

Hillary Clinton has not answered this simple question and her vague promise to look into providing transcripts seemed disingenuous.

Let’s keep it simple.

Difficult to imagine that she has a truthful non-controversial answer, right? If she had a simple answer, she would have given it, right?

The Wall Street sharks didn’t pay her to criticize their predation.

And they invited her to speak more than once.

Absent transcripts that prove otherwise, I think it’s reasonable to conclude that she stroked their egos and encouraged their plans for global domination in partnership with US foreign and military policy.

What else would the former Secretary of State have been expected to say?

What else would be worth that kind of money?


Cliven Bundy wants to join the party

February 5, 2016

Yesterday a federal grand jury indicted the Bundy brothers. The Las Vegas Review Journal reports,

Nevada brothers Ammon and Ryan Bundy and 14 others have been indicted by a federal grand jury in the armed takeover of a federal wildlife refuge in eastern Oregon.

All 16 defendants — including four protesters still holed up at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near Burns — have been charged with a single felony count of conspiracy to impede officers of the United States.

Both Bundy brothers, the sons of anti-government Bunkerville rancher Cliven Bundy, are being held without bail and face a Feb. 24 arraignment. Authorities consider Ammon Bundy the Oregon takeover’s leader.

The three-page indictment, unsealed in Portland on Thursday, accuses the defendants of conspiring to “prevent by force, intimidation and threats” employees of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from carrying out their duties at the refuge.

Cliven Bundy apparently wants to join the party.

OPB.org reports,

Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy said Monday that the occupation at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge would continue.

In a notarized letter from Clark County, Nevada, Bundy wrote to Harney County Sheriff David Ward that “We the People of Harney County and also We the People of the citizens of the United States DO GIVE NOTICE THAT WE WILL RETAIN POSSESSION OF THE HARNEY COUNTY RESOURCE CENTER. (Malhaur [sic] National Wildlife Refuge).”

The letter was also sent by certified mail to Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and President Barack Obama.

“Remove all federal and state policing agents out of Harney County,” Bundy wrote. “Place a Harney County sheriff guard post at the entrance road of the Harney County Resource Center stopping all from entering or exiting, for a time.”

Since a conspiracy consists of agreeing with one or more people to commit a specific crime and then committing an overt act in furtherance of the conspiracy, I cannot help but conclude that Cliven Bundy’s letter seals the deal for him.

Here’s hoping the government sets another place at the defense table.


Bernie Sanders comes from far back to finish in a virtual tie with Hillary Clinton

February 2, 2016

Last night in Iowa, Bernie Sanders achieved what seemed impossible nine months ago. He overcame Hillary Clinton’s seemingly insurmountable lead and finished in a virtual tie. Something happened on her ‘way to the forum,’ so to speak. He derailed her expected coronation.

Last night, he said,

Iowa, thank you. Nine months ago, we came to this beautiful state. We had no political organization, we had no money, we had no name recognition, and we were taking on the most powerful political organization in the United States of America. And tonight, while the results are still not known, it looks like we are in a virtual tie.”

His remarkable achievement in Iowa is even more impressive when one considers that he is a social democrat with virtually no name recognition outside of New England. He financed his campaign with donations that averaged $27. By contrast Hillary Clinton is well known and well financed with a war chest consisting of millions of dollars contributed by wealthy individual donors and corporations.

Here’s the breakdown of who voted for the two candidates. The New Yorker is reporting,

The age gap between Clinton supporters and Sanders supporters was huge. According to the entrance polls, which wrongly predicted a Clinton victory, Sanders got eighty-six per cent of the Democratic vote in the seventeen-to-twenty-four age group, eighty-one per cent in the twenty-five-to-twenty-nine group, and sixty-five per cent in the thirty-to-thirty-nine age group. Clinton, by contrast, was largely reliant on the middle-aged and the elderly. Among forty-something voters, she won by five percentage points. Among the over-fifties, she won by more than twenty per cent.

I have been saying for a long time that Bernie Sanders is the only candidate for president from either party who has identified and proposed solutions for the most serious problems that we face. On the other hand, Hillary Clinton is literally the establishment candidate who wants to stay the course that has failed to improve the lot of the vanishing middle class. Her foreign policy views are neoconservative and she supports the reprehensible exploitation of natural and human resources by U.S. corporations. Regrettably, she also supports regime change as a means to protect the financial interests of those corporations. In practice, regime change is antidemocratic because it involves destabilizing democratically elected reform-minded governments and replacing them with military dictatorships. For example, think of Honduras which has turned into the murder capitol of Central America after she supported the military coup that replaced the elected civilian government and commenced a war against reform-minded people protesting the loss of their democracy while seeking to protect human rights.

She also supports the policy best described by the expression, “Don’t sacrifice the good for the perfect.” Her willingness to settle for half-a-loaf when policies and priorities need to change dramatically to protect the middle class and rebuild the economy is discouraging. Her cautious approach does not inspire and that is why her support comes from older people.

His attention is on the future. Her attention is on the past.

I endorsed Bernie Sanders long ago and I hope you will vote for him too.


Dildonacht on Highway 35: One dead One wounded

January 27, 2016

Late yesterday afternoon, the FBI and Oregon State Police intercepted a small group of the radical right-wing terrorists, who had taken over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, as they were driving to John Day, OR to attend a community meeting. Gunshots were exchanged. Robert LaVoy Finnicum, 54. is dead. Ryan Bundy sustained a non life-threatening gunshot wound to his arm. Four others, including his brother Ammon Bundy, were arrested. The other three are Ryan Payne, 32, of Anaconda, Mont., Brian Cavalier, 44, of Bunkerville, Nevada and Shawna J. Cox, 59, of Kanab, Utah.

The Washington Post is reporting,

A sixth person involved in the occupation, Joseph Donald O’Shaughnessy of Cottonwood, Ariz., was arrested about an hour and a half after the initial confrontation. Shortly after that, a seventh person — Peter Santilli of Cincinnati, who is known for live streaming refuge events — was arrested in Burns, the seat of Harney County where the refuge is located.

Meanwhile, Jon Eric Ritzheimer, 32, a key leader of the armed occupation, surrendered to police in Arizona on a conspiracy charge Tuesday, the FBI said.

Ritzheimer, who serves as the inspiration for the title, is the man in the video asking people to stop sending sex toys to the wannabe revolutionaries. He also is the guy who organized the armed anti-Muslim rallies in Phoenix, AZ.

Eight people are in federal custody charged with conspiracy to impede federal officers through the use of force, intimidation or threats.

A group of the self-described patriots remains entrenched at the wildlife refuge. The FBI and Oregon State Police are reportedly surrounding the place, possibly with intent to arrest more people. If they are smart, they will surrender. The rest should leave or face arrest and possibly worse.

Later today, possibly this morning, the people in federal custody in Oregon will appear in court for an initial appearance before a United States Magistrate Judge who will review the complaint and attached affidavit regarding the factual basis for probable cause, advise them of their rights, including the right to remain silent and be represented by counsel, and appoint counsel at public expense for those who cannot afford counsel. The judge will find probable cause and all of them will be detained without bail for a detention/preliminary hearing at which time the government will request that they be denied bail pending the outcome of the case. I am expecting that all of them will be detained without bail because they are charged with a crime of violence and they were armed when arrested.

You can reasonably expect that within a month or so a federal grand jury will return an indictment that will include additional charges. The conspiracy charge is just a way to hold them pending the comprehensive indictment coming down the road.

Basically, these defendants buried themselves in a mountain of social-media evidence.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, so to speak, U.S. Attorney Bill Williams, Greg Bretzing (the FBI special agent in charge of the case) and Harney County Sheriff David Ward will be holding a news conference this morning.


Schadenfreude in Houston

January 26, 2016

A Houston grand jury convened last year to investigate Planned Parenthood for selling aborted human fetuses for profit concluded its investigation yesterday by indicting David Daleiden, the antiabortion zealot who created the Center for Medical Progress and Sandra Merritt his associate who assisted him in an undercover scheme to videotape Planned Parenthood officials allegedly agreeing to sell fetuses for profit, which is prohibited by law.

The videos were heavily edited.
.
The grand jury did not indict Planned Parenthood or any of its officials, which is consistent with the organization’s claim that it never sold fetuses for profit. Instead, they donated them to organizations for scientific research charging a minimal fee to cover their costs. The organization has since stopped collecting that fee.

The New York Times is reporting,

The record-tampering charges accused Mr. Daleiden and Ms. Merritt of making and presenting fake California driver’s licenses, with the intent to defraud, for their April meeting at Planned Parenthood in Houston.

The LA Times is reporting,

He also was indicted on a misdemeanor count that is related to soliciting the purchase of human organs, according to a statement from Harris County Dist. Atty. Devon Anderson (a Republican, I might add, who was appointed by former Texas Gov. Rick Perry).

Schadenfreude: a feeling of enjoyment that comes from seeing or hearing about the troubles of other people. : enjoyment obtained from the troubles of others. German, from Schaden damage + Freude joy.

How sweet it is.


Genocide in Flint

January 24, 2016

If you believe that people generally intend the natural and probable consequences of their acts, you have to seriously consider the possibility that Michigan Governor Rick Snyder and his cohorts intended to commit genocide in Flint.

As anyone who has chemically treated swimming pool water can affirm:

When you add Chlorine (CL) to water (H2O) in order to kill microbes, you create HCL, which is hydrochloric acid. Since it’s not a good idea to go swimming in vats of acid as any damn fool knows, you have to add a base to neutralize the acid. When I managed a couple of public swimming pools back in the 60s, we used to add soda ash to the water to increase the pH to 7.0, which is the neutral balance-point between acid and base.

We checked the pH every hour with a simple portable color-test kit and added soda ash to increase the pH if it were below 7.0. We kept a written record of each hourly result and how much soda ash we added.

When the idiots in Flint decided not to add an anti-corrosive agent (i.e., a base) to the water supply they were disinfecting with chlorine, they converted the water into an acid that caused skin rashes and dissolved the inner surface of the pipes, releasing lead into the water supply.

As Amy Davidson lays out the case against the people who poisoned Flint’s water supply in her New Yorker article, The Contempt That Poisoned Flint’s Water, I cannot help but conclude that they knew what they were doing long before the story broke.

A brilliant neo-nazi type solution to reduce poverty in Flint.

A harsh accusation I realize, but how could Snyder and his cohorts not have known?

Michael Moore accused Snyder of genocide.

He is right, if Snyder is a person who intends the natural and probable consequences of his acts.

A thorough and complete investigation is necessary.


Jesus was an apocalyptic rabbi who did not believe in family values

January 21, 2016

Jesus was an apocalyptic rabbi who challenged authority and did not believe in family values. He was crucified for challenging authority and did not sacrifice himself to save humans for their sins.

From the Gospel of Thomas*:

Example 1

(55) Jesus said, “Whoever does not hate his father and his mother cannot become a disciple to me. And whoever does not hate his brothers and sisters and take up his cross in my way will not be worthy of me.”

Example 2

Jesus was speaking to a crowd in a public place that had gathered to hear him speak.

(99) The disciples said to him, “Your brothers and your mother are standing outside.”

He said to them, “Those here who do the will of my father are my brothers and my mother. It is they who will enter the kingdom of my father.”

Perhaps you thought he was all about peace?

Example 3

(16) Jesus said, “Men think, perhaps, that it is peace which I have come to cast upon the world. They do not know that it is dissension which I have come to cast upon the earth: fire, sword, and war. For there will be five in a house: three will be against two, and two against three, the father against the son, and the son against the father. And they will stand solitary.”

Dissension against whom?

Example 4

(63) Jesus said, “There was a rich man who had much money. He said, ‘I shall put my money to use so that I may sow, reap, plant, and fill my storehouse with produce, with the result that I shall lack nothing.’ Such were his intentions, but that same night he died. Let him who has ears hear.”

Example 5

(64) Jesus said, “A man had received visitors. And when he had prepared the dinner, he sent his servant to invite the guests.

He went to the first one and said to him, ‘My master invites you.’ He said, ‘I have claims against some merchants. They are coming to me this evening. I must go and give them my orders. I ask to be excused from the dinner.’

He went to another and said to him, ‘My master has invited you.’ He said to him, ‘I have just bought a house and am required for the day. I shall not have any spare time.’

He went to another and said to him, ‘My master invites you.’ He said to him, ‘My friend is going to get married, and I am to prepare the banquet. I shall not be able to come. I ask to be excused from the dinner.’

He went to another and said to him, ‘My master invites you.’ He said to him, ‘I have just bought a farm, and I am on my way to collect the rent. I shall not be able to come. I ask to be excused.’

The servant returned and said to his master, ‘Those whom you invited to the dinner have asked to be excused.’ The master said to his servant, ‘Go outside to the streets and bring back those whom you happen to meet, so that they may dine.’ Businessmen and merchants will not enter the places of my father.”

Example 6

(65) He said, “There was a good man who owned a vineyard. He leased it to tenant farmers so that they might work it and he might collect the produce from them. He sent his servant so that the tenants might give him the produce of the vineyard. They seized his servant and beat him, all but killing him. The servant went back and told his master. The master said, ‘Perhaps he did not recognize them.’ He sent another servant. The tenants beat this one as well. Then the owner sent his son and said, ‘Perhaps they will show respect to my son.’ Because the tenants knew that it was he who was the heir to the vineyard, they seized him and killed him. Let him who has ears hear.”

With whom did he identify?

Example 7

(54) Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor, for yours is the kingdom of heaven.”

Example 8

(58) Jesus said, “Blessed is the man who has suffered and found life.”

Example 9

(49) Jesus said, “Blessed are the solitary and elect, for you will find the kingdom. For you are from it, and to it you will return.”

________________________________

* The Gospel of Thomas consists of 114 sayings, in no readily apparent order, that are attributed to Jesus. The author identifies himself as Jude, Jesus’s identical twin brother. The book was written in Greek no later than the first half of second century, C.E., and it contains some sayings that are similar to but shorter than sayings found in the New Testament gospels. For this reason, many scholars believe that the author probably had not read the New Testament gospels and independently relied on sayings that probably go back to the historical Jesus.

The gospel was regarded as heretical and probably not included in the New Testament because it:

(1) does not mention the apostle Paul’s prescription for salvation (belief in Jesus’s crucifixion, death, physical resurrection and ascension), and

(2) contains language echoing the Gnostic belief that salvation comes from a spiritual resurrection based on knowing that we contain a divine spark and focusing our attention and identity on that spark. Indeed, the author assures the reader that,

These are the secret sayings which the living Jesus spoke and which Didymos** Judas Thomas*** wrote down.

(1) And he said, “Whoever finds the interpretation of these sayings will not experience death.”

(2) Jesus said, “Let him who seeks continue seeking until he finds. When he finds, he will become troubled. When he becomes troubled, he will be astonished, and he will rule over the All.”

(3) Jesus said, “If those who lead you say to you, ‘See, the kingdom is in the sky,’ then the birds of the sky will precede you. If they say to you, ‘It is in the sea,’ then the fish will precede you. Rather, the kingdom is inside of you, and it is outside of you. When you come to know yourselves, then you will become known, and you will realize that it is you who are the sons of the living father. But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty and it is you who are that poverty.”

I like this Jesus. I am not fond of family values and I believe my spirit is immortal. I do not believe in a physical resurrection of the dead and I do not believe Jesus sacrificed himself to save all human beings from being punished for their sins. He was crucified because he challenged authority.

The Gospel of Thomas was fortuitously discovered in 1947 at Nag Hammadi by an Egyptian camel driver named Muhammad Ali (no relation) and his companions who were searching for camel dung in a public dump site to use as fuel for fires.

**Didymos means twin in Greek

***Thomas means twin in Aramaic (the primary language Jesus spoke)


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