Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Second Guilded Age

It has become difficult not recognize that we are firmly in the grip of a second Gilded Age. Not only is this return obvious in the homage - if not hysteria - that marks a return to the dreamworlds of consumption, commodification and a survival-of-the-fittest ethic, but also in the actions of right-wing politicians who want to initiate policies that take the country back to the late 19th century - a time in which the reforms of the New Deal, the Great Society and the Progressive Era did not exist.

This was a period in which robber barons, railroad magnates and the super-rich spread their corrupting influence throughout the political, economic and cultural landscapes - without having to deal with irritating social reforms such as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, child labor laws, environmental protections, affirmative action, civil rights, union rights, antitrust laws, a progressive income tax and a host of other reforms. This was a period when money flowed and privilege shaped practically all aspects of American life, making a mockery out of democracy and imposing massive amounts of suffering on the vast majority of Americans. Women could not vote and were seen as second-class citizens, blacks were treated harshly by Jim Crow policies, young people were exploited through harsh labor, education was limited to the elite, inequality in wealth and income reached extreme disparities, slums festered, and politics was corrupted by the moneyed classes.

In time, protests emerged among students, workers, unions, women, people of color and others to address these injustices. Labor became a potent force in the first half of the 20th century. Then blacks mobilized a formidable civil rights movement, women’s groups organized to address a range of injustices, students infused new life into the drive for democracy both within and outside of higher education. Gay, lesbian and transgender groups - along with a number of other marginalized and oppressed groups - fought to gain basic civil rights. But these movements not only produced notable victories in deepening and expanding the promise and possibilities of a substantive democracy, they also were the object of a powerfully organized backlash on the part of conservatives, who organized a right-wing cultural revolution that successfully rolled back many of the progressive gains that emerged in the first and second half of the 20th century.

The conservative backlash and war against equality, justice and human rights has been reinforced in the last 30 years by the consolidation of the media into the hands of the corporate elite. There are precious few news outlets left that still speak truth to power... not only fighting the corporate propaganda trend, but showcasing a variety of writers and academics who take seriously the role of the Journalism in a Democracy. Journalists that fight for the truth, give voice to those who are powerless report more than the gossip and scripts redlined by executive producers and address issues that are ignored in the dominant and mainstream corporate media.

Please refuse to support the politicians, think tanks, media and anti-public intellectuals who are pushing to create a second Gilded Age. Our Democratic Republic matters to more than the people inhabiting the United States of America.. our policy, programs and newly made corporate citizens are hurting plant, animal and people alike all around this planet. We are the only ones in a position to lead the fight. Our Vote is our weapon to fight for a formative culture that demands we not only retain but improve the social contracts won by blood, sweat and tears of our elders throughout the last century.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Day Democracy Died— Long live the Oligarchy!

Wisconsin's recall election was the first major test of the New Era in American Politics. That new era began in January of 2010 when the US Supreme Court ruled in that there was to be a new class of Citizen. The political voice of transnational corporations and billionaires had a bigger say in matters of governance. We The People now means we the Transnationals. In Citizens United, the Supreme Court ruled that Corporations were entitled to equal and greater "free speech" than living humans have.

Unlike their forefathers and those of great nations like Britain before them, the new Supreme Court ruled that even though a Corporation has no life-span limit, no soul or moral compass, no single body to hold responsible, they should be able to dig deeply into their enormous coffers to pay limitless amounts of money influencing government. And now without need to disclose to whom or how much. Oligarchy, government by the few, is borne.

Yes, our vote insured they can employ scores of minions who's sole job is targeting elections and politicians, funding (and in fact launching) their candidates... as well as sabotaging the opponents through any media, mailing or underhanded method they can concoct and fund, for there is no longer any accountability or tracabililty either. They can run ads that polarize a candidate they don't like and make it look like it was the candidate who authorized it... sound like Constitutionally protected free speech to you?It must if you voted to for retaining th status quo.

Your vote to continue this billionaire corporate agenda sealed the fate of this nation to a new world order.... Congratulations. We the people no longer have the ability to speak up in a system controlled by multinational corporations who are now equals to each of us in rights, and freedoms... oh except you also gave them immunity from paying any taxes or having any rules or regulations to govern their behavior....

So lets all enjoy the air, water, resources and climate while we can.... or simply declare ourselves an entity like General Electric who can pay no taxes, trash the environment and taxpayers to clean it up. We can extract resources without compensating the the peoples who rightfully own it... and own any media outlet that might have a chance to actually report the facts.

For it is now illegal to enter a business whether as an employee or concerned citizen, and take any pictures or describe any improprieties (whistlebowers) as it infringes upon that multinational's newly given rights... This while it is now okay that your phone conversations, emails, financial records and your every location can be tracked traced and recorded by these same companies —all under the protection of law.

A few of America’s most notorious oligarchs – including the Koch and the DeVos Families (Big Energy & Amway) billionaires – as well as countless transnational corporations—who do most of their business here and keep their profits outside the US, are apparently okay to funnel millions to elect their candidates and pass their laws.

Thanks to an irrational and likely illegal Supreme Court ruling, we have moved into an era of oligarch-run politics. As much as $40 million of oligarchy money was spent in Wisconsin in a handful of local races – a testing laboratory for strategies that will now be used against Democrats nationwide in 2012.

And so now we enter the battle of the oligarchs over the next fifteen or so months. Perhaps you thought the politicing was bad for the recall... brace yourself, the 2012 elections are gonna make you pray for an Alberta Darling/Sandy Pasch commercial.

As the old saying goes, when the elephants fight, the mice get trampled. In this case, the mice is democracy itself.

America is now – as proven by Wisconsin – just a few steps from a totally corrupted, totally billionaire- and transnational-controlled political system. The Citizens United election experiment is over, and the oligarchs won. Long live the oligarchy. Three cheers for the Wisconsin voters who with the stroke of a pencil, ended 230 years of an experiment in a Representative Democratic Republic. Hooray for the new Transnational Oligarchy... enjoy.

And if you're interested to see how its all going to turn out... take a look at England, the middle East, the horn of Africa and hundreds of other places today, where the separation of classes is turning into riotous masses... Tonight, in several of the greatest cities in the world, society is ripping itself apart. London's burning... Israel is roiled in turmoil from within, Italy, France, Ireland, Spain... all are rising up against the power that happens when societies are separated into classes.... united we stand... divided... we will be conquered.

It is with a heavy heart that bears witness to such divisive propaganda clouding the souls, eyes and judgment of so many, who's decision will likely bring about our darkest days here on Earth. Devastation and destruction on a global scale at the hands of a select few who've used power and corruption to quell the only nation capable of stopping the madness. And it all started here in Wisconsin... last week.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Badger Country—Unite!

I'm from Wisconsin, the Badger State, so listen up to one of our Congressmen, angered by the GOP-led antics... Have you read the Walker Bill? —crafted by minions and corporate creeps, whose numbers far out-strip the paltry staff left to aide each legislator. For such are the rules laid down in GOPher holes. Rep. Hintz's points go far beyond 144 pages! To them who oppose I say Friend, what words has your Drudge Report told you to say of the illegal vote, the pre-release, the silencing of discussion, the unsportsman-like conduct in our Capitol's Halls? If this Game Plan sent from K-Street Corporate lobbyists and billionaire Kochs, is this the way you play fair upon being given a seat at the table in our Badger State—then Friend, you and your GOPhers go find another hole in which to crawl, for if its GOPher games you like, this is Badger Country and we Badgers have begun to Unite! So listen up cuz over the weekend the thunder and lightning did strike!— twas the Night Watchman a givin thunda in da rotunda yesterday— Mess with our rights and watch us Unite!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Vanishing Bees, Vanishing Freedoms

Today we face a new problem threatening life on our planet. It's not aliens, end-times or islamo-socialist uprisings... its Bees or rather lack of them.

Just in time for Spring Planting, Transnational Agribusiness Corporations have been granted unconditional permits to expand the use of Systemic Insecticides. These water-soluble products initially were sprayed on plants, but moreso now they are absorbed to directly to the seed, expressing themselves genetically in every part of the plant. The sub-lethal neuro-toxins attack the insect's nervous and immune systems after merely eating into the stalk or leaf. However, these poisons are also expressed in the nectar and pollen (and one would surmise fruit). Now Bees and other pollinator insects are suffering similar symptoms. Catastrophic losses are resulting in disruptions further up the food chain into birds and bats.

These Neonicinatoids, particularly Clothianidin, linger and accumulate in the soil long after the plants have been harvested. Studies show a soil toxicity half-life of 19 years after a single application and they accumulate with subsequent plantings.

Honey Bees Colonies have been dying at an alarming rate. Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) was discovered by pollinator beekeepers in 2006, the same year neonicinatoids were given Conditional Permits for use in Corn. The US has 88 million acres of corn growing within its border. Most of it is laced in neonicinatoids. Even though corn is wind-pollinated, bees are still attracted to the abundant pollen stores regardless of whether they help with pollination. Several EU nations have banned the use of neonicinatoids because their research showed the direct correlation to CCD.

In the US we have several agencies, mandated to protect citizens through regulation and supervision, but nowadays they seem to serve their Corporate citizen's interests rather than constituents. Our newly elected, corporate-sponsored legislature is poised to execute marching orders to finally kill or neuter these agencies, offering instead, self-regulation and supervision by the manufacturers and provider. This would effectively place the wolf in charge of tending the chicken coup. They've begun a two-pronged assault on the EPA, FDA & USDA to either close them down or severely cut their funding. For years these same Corporate giants have employed a revolving-door "if ya can't beat em, infiltrate em" agenda placing execs an insiders in positions of power to systematically dilute or disable their Agency's ability to function, only to return home to lucrative positions following their term in office—and this practice happens regardless of political party affiliation.

With tactics involving media pundits, think tanks, programming, and newly consolidated journalistic and political groups such as the Tea Party Movement, they have not only been successful at focusing attention on how the Agencies are ineffective or broken, but also have forged ways to divide the population against each other over how and why rather than what was responsible. It appears they think a divided population's dissent and polarized ideology will prevent any groundswell from gaining traction to demand reform and restructure, and instead allow them to simply abolish these Agencies.

But to abolish them is to end the only means our citizens have to exercise collective protections, safety and regulations of these products practices, toxins and genetically manipulated flora and fauna by transnational petrochemical and agribusiness corporations who's track record on self-governance stands, in shambles, for itself.

Please listen to this interview with a longtime Beekeeper, UW-Madison grad and ex IBM exec, Tom Theobald. He's the whistle-blower who uncovered much of the information we now know about the agency testing confirming a problem, and subsequent denial, obfuscation and deception by the revolving-door department heads... this is important information.

The American Bee Federation is requesting people call Congress to urge that the small honey bee research program be left intact and remain at least at current spending levels:

—Point out the urgent need for a solution to CCD and other conditions affecting honey bee health.
—Point out the importance of honey bees to agriculture crops $17.9 billion by the latest estimate.
—Point out that USDA honey bee research's program is too important to receive cuts
—Point out how important good honey bee health is to your own beekeeping business.
— But most important Point out that you demand reform and restructure rather than abolishing the agencies.

Call today! The debate is scheduled to begin in the House on Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2011.

Capital switchboard: 202.225.3121 (House); 202.224.3121 (Senate). Ask for the individual handling agricultural issues. Or, send a message via the Congressmens Web sites. You can find them at or

For more information about the pesticides, laws and real-world accounts of bee colony survival please look over these websites: