College of Political Knowledge
Yesterday was the Super Tuesday…….and all the rhetoric that has been flowing from the lips of candidates made me think of something from my college days…….
The Third Way…..I recently heard this used to describe centrism…..there is even a think tank called the third way…..what it is is a cope out to principles it is NOT a third way but rather a way for big business to further insert its political penis into the process……Clinton and his worthless bunch of Dems, the Democratic Leadership Council, that help give use the crap with NAFTA and the repeal of Glass/Steagall and now they want to play it as if they represent some silent bunch of mindless automatons…..(maybe they do)…..
But when I heard the term I thought of the days of FASCISM….yes I am old…….that political process was called the third way….not capitalism and not communism…..but an alternative…..with the following precepts…..
1-a single mass party
2-police used against real and imagined enemies
3-monoplistic control of the mass media
4-central control of the economy
5-an ideology that covers all aspects of a person life
Now sports fans….does any of that sound remotely familiar?
It was called the third way because it lied to the people that it was an alternative….capitalism was preserved while the mass actions were taunted as it was in socialism……but it was nothing by an authoritarian form of government where the people were solely tools of the state with NO input and NO power…….(does any of that sound familiar?)
Use of the term third way is nothing but a ploy to keep the extension of total control over the lives of the people…..even if some well known politicos like Kerry and others are member of this so-called movement….they seem to want us top believe that Americans are somehow not a political animal when in reality it is all just a game….Americans are either conservative or liberal (the American definition not the philosophical one)……these people are trying to reorganize society using a political blueprint that the reps only care about…..
So these people in this “third way” are doing just what the fascists of old were doing…..they are claiming to be drawing from both sides of the political spectrum…..
Radical centrists also can be divisive, as opposed to the non-partisan approach of traditional centrism. Radical centrists are quick to dissociate themselves from traditional moderates, whom they often contrast as the “sensible center” or deride as the “squishy center.” (Does that sound familiar?)
I regret that I see more on the lines of Germany after WW1 than I see real answers to real problems our country is now facing……I also see a danger forming in the minds of politicians and their handlers……the idea that the people are in control of the process is GONE….we have been replaced by CASH! And that can lead to a way of life that is not good for the country.
College of Political Knowledge
My readers know that I spend an inordinate amount of time trying to explain and make complex theories more palatable to the average working stiff…..and I hope that I succeed in some small way so that we all can make more informed decisions in our political thinking……
State Capitalism? Now there is a subject that would make a person’s eyes bleed or the head explode….we can either look at it as some secret code word for socialism (not necessarily so) or we could talk about the government programs…….it conjurers up some many images for people….but what is it really? State capitalism, that is. I am sure that most people already have a preconceived idea of what socialism is and that is the subject for yet another post….
State capitalism simply put is….the idea of combining state funded projects and state regulation of the market with private ownership and profit taking…..if you think about it it sounds a lot like what we have now only on a limited basis…..
Now with that under our belt….state capitalism can impose regulations on labor and generate a bunch of it, especially when capitalists are reluctant to invest (sound familiar?)…….it can encompass private financial gain with an overview of the needs of the country as a whole….(still sounding familiar?)…..In really bad economic times…it can motivate and stimulate local investment when other markets look more inviting to the private investors…..(once again, familiar?)…..
Let’s be real……state capitalism can be a far more effective way of dealing with a bad recession or depression than traditional liberal capitalism……
And yes, we can associate state capitalism most often with some form of dictatorship….however in dire economic times it may just be the best way to fight a recession or a deep depression….you want an example? Then look no further than Germany after WW1…here we are talking about economics and not the political theory that we all detest……because of direct government spending in infrastructure and industry….Germany was the first country out of the Great Depression…..
You may not like the idea….but think about it hard….how else will we pull ourselves out of the economic funk we live in today? Sorry to pee on their parade….but spending cuts and tax breaks will NOT bring the US out of this making of our demise……and is it not government’s purpose to insure the country has a strong economy?
Time for a couple days without the musings Mitt and Newt and to talk about a few things that are in the news that may not be common knowledge……..crap! Mitt wins Nevada!
Like most people I am fascinated by all things Maya…….I am amazed that the people that did not use the wheel and had no machination built pyramids and whole cities with the use of a stick and string….so with that I was shocked to read a post about the discovery of a new Maya city………
Archaeologists have discovered the ruins of an ancient Mayan city in the mountains of North Georgia believed to be at least 1,100 years old. According to Richard Thornton at Examiner.com, the ruins are reportedly what remains of a city built by Mayans fleeing wars, volcanic eruptions, droughts and famine.
In 1999, University of Georgia archeologist Mark Williams led an expedition to investigate the Kenimer Mound, a large, five-sided pyramid built in approximately 900 A.D. in the foothills of Georgia’s tallest mountain, Brasstown Bald. Many local residents has assumed for years that the pyramid was just another wooded hill, but in fact it was a structure built on an existing hill in a method common to Mayans living in Central America as well as to Southeastern Native American tribes.
Speculation has abounded for years as to what could have happened to the people who lived in the great Meso-American societies of the first century. Some historians believed that they simply died out in plagues and food shortages, but others have long speculated about the possibility of mass migration to other regions.
Speaking of the Maya………
We all have heard the doomsday predictions from just about everyone who fancies his/her self as a sage…..our buddy the minister that cannot seem to get it right, good old reliable Nostradamus, the Chinese, I-Ching, and a whole host of others to include the Maya, who are pretty specific in the date, 21 December 2012….but with all this hocus pocus is there any proof that the end is near? Or is it just a whole bunch of wishful thinking and bravado?
NASA is reporting……that the earth could be hit by the effects of a massive solar storm….
In a new warning, Nasa said the super storm would hit like “a bolt of lightning” and could cause catastrophic consequences for the world’s health, emergency services and national security unless precautions are taken.
Scientists believe it could damage everything from emergency services’ systems, hospital equipment, banking systems and air traffic control devices, through to “everyday” items such as home computers, iPods and Sat Navs.
large swathes of the world could face being without power for several months, although he admitted that was unlikely.
A more likely scenario was that large areas, including northern Europe and Britain which have “fragile” power grids, would be without power and access to electronic devices for hours, possibly even days.
He said preparations were similar to those in a hurricane season, where authorities knew a problem was imminent but did not know how serious it would be.
Oh my God……without the use of cels, Ipods and pads….the world will truly end for those 20 somethings that cannot exist without a electronic device of some sort shoved up their butts….I think us old farts will be fine, we lived without the gadgets of today and we can live without them again (at least for awhile)….thoughts?
Today in history…….30 years ago it was WAR!
Do you remember the “Iron Lady”? That strong female PM of the UK? If not, do not fret there is a movie you can see to fill in any blanks in your memory…..I could go on and on and try to educate my readers, but it would be a waste of time….why? Most people could care less about Thatcher and her rule as the Iron Lady of British politics…..but there is a few things that seem to merit a mention…..
I racked my brain trying to find the best way to start this post and being an old fart Google did not come to mind at first….but then that damn light bulb went off and thanx to Wikipedia……The Falklands War began on Friday 2 April 1982, when Argentine forces invaded and occupied the Falkland Islands and South Georgia. The British government dispatched a naval task force to engage the Argentine Navy and Air Force, and retake the islands by amphibious assault. The resulting conflict lasted 74 days and ended with the Argentine surrender on 14 June 1982, which returned the islands to British control. 649 Argentine military personnel, 255 British military personnel and three Falkland Islanders died during the conflict. It remains the most recent external conflict to be fought by the UK without any allied states and the only external Argentine war since the 1880s.
The conflict was the result of a protracted historical confrontation regarding the sovereignty of the islands. Argentina has asserted that the Falkland Islands are Argentinian territory since the 19th century and, as of 2011, shows no sign of relinquishing the claim. The claim was added to the Argentine constitution after its reformation in 1994. As such, the Argentine government characterised their initial invasion as the re-occupation of its own territory, whilst the British government saw it as an invasion of a British dependent territory. However, neither state officially declared war and hostilities were almost exclusively limited to the territories under dispute and the local area of the South Atlantic.
Now with that short history lesson down….why on earth would I post something as trivial, at least to the US, as the 1982 conflict between Argentina and the UK?
Good question with an excellent answer…..
Military chiefs are dusting off their plans for the defence of the Falklands after South American countries banned ships from the islands docking in their ports.
Sources fear Prince William’s six-month deployment to the South Atlantic as an air-sea rescue pilot next year could provoke more sabre-rattling.
Yesterday Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner claimed Britain was ready to use its military to steal natural resources ‘anywhere, anyhow’.
She said: ‘They’re currently taking our oil reserves and fish stocks from the Falklands but when they need more natural resources they will come and use force to steal them wherever and however they can.
Mercosur, the South American trading block which also includes Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay have agreed to ban boats sailing under the Falklands flag from docking at their ports – even though Paraguay does not even have a coastline.
Will this be how the new year begins?
Finally, the day has come….the day the pundits have been jerking off about for 3 years……the day the good people of Iowa go to their caucuses and pick a GOP candidate that they want to see run for the position of prez for the party………will it be Paul or Romney or Newt or maybe one of those other guys whose names will soon be forgotten……the season will begin tomorrow……and all the GOP wannabes will be saying that they are the embodiment of their late God, Ronald Reagan….he has passed on and cannot defend himself but I want to point out just what it is that all these GOPers are saying when they invoke the name of…..REAGAN!
1. Reagan cut taxes for the Rich, increased taxes on the Middle Class -
Ronald Reagan is loved by conservatives and was loved by big business throughout his presidency and there’s a reason for it. When Reagan came into office in January of 1981, the top tax rate was 70%, but when he left office in 1989 the top tax rate was down to only 28%. As Reagan gave the breaks to all his rich friends, there was a lack of revenue coming into the federal government. In order to bring money back into the government, Reagan was forced to raise taxes eleven times throughout his time in office. One example was when he signed into law the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 1982. Reagan raised taxes seven of the eight years he was in office and the tax increases were felt hardest by the lower and middle class.2. Tripling the National Debt -
As Reagan cut taxes for the wealthy, the government was left with less money to spend. When Reagan came into office the national debt was $900 billion, by the time he left the national debt had tripled to $2.8 trillion.3. Iran/Contra -
In 1986, a group of Americans were being held hostage by a terrorist group with ties to Iran. In an attempt to free the hostages, Ronald Reagan secretly sold arms and money to Iran. Much of the money that was received from the trade went to fund the Nicaragua Contra rebels who were in a war with the Sandinista government of Nicaragua. When the scandal broke in the Untied States it became the biggest story in the country, Reagan tried to down play what happened, but never fully recovered.4. Reagan funded Terrorists -
The attacks on 9/11 by al-Qaeda and Osama Bin Laden brought new attention to international terrorism. All of a sudden, Americans coast to coast wore their American flag pins, ate their freedom fries and couldn’t wait to go to war with anyone who looked like a Muslim. What Americans didn’t realize was that the same group that attacked the United States on 9/11 was funded by Ronald Reagan in the 1980s. Prepping for a possible war with the Soviet Union, Ronald Reagan spent billions of dollars funding the Islamist mujahidin Freedom Fighters in Afghanistan. With billions of American dollars, weapons and training coming their way, the Taliban and Osama Bin Laden took everything they were given and gave it back to the United States over a decade later in the worst possible way imaginable.5. Unemployment issues -When Ronald Reagan came into office 1981, unemployment was at 7.5%. After Reagan cut taxes for the wealthy, he began raising taxes on the middle and lower class. Corporations started to ship more jobs out of the United States while hiring cheap foreign labor in order to make a bigger profit. While corporations made billions, Americans across the country lost their jobs. As 1982 came to a close, unemployment was nearly 11%. Unemployment began to drop as the years went on, but the jobs that were created were low paying and barely helped people make ends meet. The middle and lower class had their wages nearly frozen as the top earners saw dramatic increases in salary.6. Ignoring AIDS -By the time the 1980s came around, AIDS had become one of the most frightening things to happen to the country in recent memory. No one understood what AIDS and HIV really was and when people don’t understand something, they become scared of it. The fear of the unknown was sweeping across the country and Americans needed a leader to speak out about this horrible virus, that leader never came. Instead of grabbing the bull by the horns and taking charge, Reagan kept quiet. Reagan couldn’t say the words AIDS or HIV until seven years into his presidency, a leader not so much.7. Reagan gave amnesty to 3 million Undocumented Immigrants -In today’s GOP, the idea of any immigrant staying in the United States whether they are legal or illegal isn’t something that conservatives embrace. What might shock them is that in 1982 Ronald Reagan gave nearly 3 million undocumented workers amnesty. The biggest reason for undocumented workers coming to the United States is because corporations hire them at a cheaper rate than they would an American citizen. All the laws that would have cracked down on companies who hire undocumented workers were, of course, removed from the bill.8. His attack on Unions and the Middle Class - The Republican war on unions and the middle class has been heating up in states like Wisconsin and Ohio, but it has been going on for a long time. Unions are formed to give a united voice to the workers in an attempt to create fairness between the corporations and their employees. On August 3rd, 1981, PATCO (Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization) went on strike in an effort to get better pay and safer working conditions. Two days later, taking the side of business, Ronald Reagan fired 11,345 workers for not returning to work…….(Thank you to Robt. Sobel for research into the policies of Reagan)……
I feel I must get all my stuff in before January 2nd, the beginning of the 2012 election circus and I feel that not much more will be important than the unfolding of the GOP circus for a presidential candidate……
I have been listening to all the pundits speak about the Arab Spring and what it all means…….pundits point out that this is an amazing turn of events that has NO precedent….with the possible exception of the Eastern European countries in the late 80′s and early 90′s……I do not want to take anything away from the brave people that are out in the streets demanding a better life…..but this type of insurrection has its history further back than 1989….much further back…like 1848.
Having worked in the Middle East years ago, I was proud to see the people rise up against the authoritarian rule…….it all began with a person setting myself on fire to protest living conditions in Tunisia, then on to Algeria, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya and finally on to Syria….there seems to be a common thread running through these protests……and no it is not necessarily the want of democracy…….first, there is the authoritarian leader, then it is low wages, high unemployment, food shortages…these were the major points that lead to the massive protests…….
I have mentioned 1848 and protests…how does this fit into the dialog?
In January of 1848 the people of Palermo, Sicily rose up against their leader, Ferdinand II…..this was the first step in an expanding age of protests…..and in the first four months of 1848 there were in the neighborhood of 50 separate uprisings…France, Austria, Prussia, most of the small states in Germany and Italy……like the Arab Spring there is NO single revolutionary movement or leader and they were basically a spontaneous occurrence…. and like the Arab Spring the causes were an authoritarian leader, high unemployment, low wages, food shortages and a desire for equality…..
Remember these people are fighting for their rights….they are not fighting for what the rest of the world perceives as their motives….their ideas of freedom may not be your definition of freedom….and it does not make them WRONG!
So ends another year and a time to look back on whether Info Ink is doing what I originally intended……
I started my blog as a way to rehab after my leg was crushed thanx to that bitch Katrina….I also wanted to try help people understand politics, theory and philosophy a little better….not trying to convince people to my way of thinking (but if they did I would be eternally grateful)…….I hope I have succeeded a bit and have been helpful……
In the beginning it was a place for me to cut and paste info from Middle East newspapers during the last Israel/Lebanon conflict….since the days of my employment in the Middle East I still read read Arab language newspapers and there was reporting that was seldom seen in the US….so I decide to let their own words speak to the conflict……
But once I began posting I realized what a great outlet for my talents of observation….and began writing on subjects that I had tried to leave behind years ago…politics and economics……and it has become more successful than I had thought it would be…..I thought it would just be my rambling thoughts with little or no interest…..I was wrong!
I have tried to give my readers information that I feel they need know to be knowledgeable voter and citizen….in doing so I have not had the success that I had anticipated…..I cannot decide if people just do not care or have I misinterpreted what people want to read…I believe it is the later more than anything.
I have wrestled with myself with the idea of changing the content of Info Ink and deciding on a possible new direction…..but what direction? Would it be more gossip? Or maybe more tech stuff? In trying to decide I fell back to something my grandfather said when I first started writing…..”It is better to write for yourself and have no one than to write for everybody and have NO self”……so my decision was made, thanx to my grandfather, I will continue on this line of posting and not compromise my principles……
As this year ends I would like to post on what is happening at Info Ink….it has been an excellent year, I got new and prolific viewers….Larry at Woodgate’s View, Spinny at Spinny Liberal, Hansi of Hansishallucinations, Phillip of Darklynoon, vjack of Red State Progressive, jolly roger of Plutocrap, Dusty of Leftwing Nut Job, Kendrick of Prince and Little Prince, Don of Doninmass all to go with my long time regulars like Quin of Quintessential Havoc (who has since decided to leave), Terrant of My Corner To Rant and Chris of Why We Worry (who is taking a sabbatical)…..you can go to blogroll and visit all these sites….they are interesting and well informed…..go…visit…often! We have had many guest over the past year and some really great comments and participation……and if I left anyone out…I apologize.
To date I have gotten 97,226 hits, 10, 111 comments, posted 4844 posts and blocked a whopping 199,168 spam….I also started publishing a daily paper, The Daily Agitator (go to blogroll and visit it when you have the time)………all in all a GREAT year!
Thank you everyone! I appreciate and enjoy our times together and I hope to have a long and fruitful friendship with you all….may we all have a good and fruitful 2012….it may prove to be an interesting year……I think it will to silly as well as interesting and entertaining….I look forward to everyone’s input.
Also if you have any ideas you would like to see me do on Info Ink, please feel free to let me know and I will see what I can do……may we all have a great 2012……once again Thank you all!
As the year draws to an end…..it is time for the announcement of Info Ink’s annual Anal-Ocity award, the “Assie”,………I would like to thank all those who participated in determining the winner……and now with all that behind us….
First runner up was…….#5………
Newt Gingrich (again)–“I am convinced that if we do not decisively win the struggle over the nature of America, by the time they’re my age they will be in a secular atheist country, potentially one dominated by radical Islamists and with no understanding of what it once meant to be an American.”
In 2nd place……….#3………..
3–Rep. Paul Broun of Georgia–“In fact, Franklin Delano Roosevelt sent his advisors, his close friends, his cabinet people to go visit with Stalin in communist Russia to study what he was doing, what Stalin was doing there so that FDR could replicate it here in the United States.”
And now……(may I have a drum roll please)……..the winner of the 2011 “Assie” Award is………(pause here for effect)………#1……our favorite whack-a-doodle…….Newt…..
”You have a very poor neighborhood. You have students that are required to go to school. They have no money, no habit of work,” Gingrich said. “What if you paid them in the afternoon to work? What if they became assistant janitors, and their job was to mop the floor and clean the bathroom?”
Thank you one and all for your participation and Mr. Newt Gingrich will be getting an email from Info Ink informing him of his prestigious win….
Thanx again, my friends……