Monday, April 30, 2012

Dick Lugar’s Voting Record

I'm no fan of Redstate but it did an excellent job summarizing the voting record of Sen. Richard Lugar who is facing a primary challenger in the Indiana primary on 5/8.

Dick Lugar voted:
To support a host of anti-gun legislation including a concealed weapons ban
To support the Bridge to Nowhere To oppose school choice for victims of Hurricane Katrina
To oppose $13 billion in new mandatory spending cuts
To support raiding the social security trust fund to fund general budget appropriations
To oppose a one year earmark moratorium
To support adding $52 billion in new spending to Barack Obama’s stimulus bill
To support TARP To support giving the IMF more money
To support the tax credit and tariff on ethanol
To support increased foreign aid spending To support an expansion of highway spending that would bankrupt the Highway Trust Fund
To support increasing the loan limit to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
Read the rest here
Red State

I doubt that Lugar's chief primary challenger, Richard Mourdock (endorsed by Sarah Palin), will be much different.  The Republican Liberty Caucus (RLC) has endorsed Patrick Flynn, here.

Judy Morris

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Setting the Record Straight on The Real Delegate Count

There is much confusion about the delegate process. That’s because each state has its own unique and frequently complex rules and procedures but basically delegates to the RNC National Convention are selected at state conventions or at a State Executive Committee meeting (not all states have state conventions).

Headlines are popping up that say ‘Ron Paul wins MN or CO or IA or WA’. It’s simply not true. Neither Washington or Iowa nor Minnesota have even had their state conventions yet.

Let’s start with the states that have actually had state conventions that have finalized delegates to the national convention or where delegates are a done deal. 

NH (1/10) Romney 9, Paul 3 (decided at primary)
ND (4/1) Romney 20, Santorum 6, Paul 2, State Convention
TN (4/7) Santorum 29, Romney 17, Gingrich 9, State Executive Committee – tentative
CO (4/14) Romney 14, Santorum 6, plus 16 uncommitted delegates. State Convention
WY (4/14) Romney 23, Santorum 2, Paul 2, plus 1 uncommitted and 2 available, State Convention

In NH, Ron Paul got 23% of the vote and 25% of the 12 delegates.

In TN, Santorum got 37% of the vote but 53% of the delegates. Romney got 28% of the vote but 31% of the delegates. Gingrich got 24% of the vote and 16% of the delegates. Ron Paul got 9% of the vote and zero delegates. The delegates are “tentative” because TN will probably end up awarding all its delegates to Romney.

In ND, Ron Paul got 28% of the caucus vote but only 7% of the delegates. Santorum got 40% of the caucus vote but only 21% of the delegates. Romney got 24% of the caucus vote but 71% of the delegates.

In CO, Ron Paul got 12% of the caucus vote, but zero delegates. Santorum got 40% of the vote but only 17% of the delegates. Romney got 35% of the vote but 39% of the delegates. However, CO has 15 uncommitted delegates.

In WY, Ron Paul got 21% of the vote but only 3% of the delegates. Santorum got 32% of the vote but only 7% of the delegates. Romney got 39% of the vote but 79% of the delegates. WY has 3 uncommitted delegates.

It’s 100% true that Republicans and GOP party officials have done everything possible to shut out and marginalize Ron Paul and the Paulites. GOP treachery is best explained by what happened in Wyoming as posted on Doug Wead’s blog.
And we [Ron Paul supporters] did take over the Nominating Committee on Friday. We had 16 out of 44 of the votes in the committee but we managed to take 9 out of the 14 preferred delegate positions on the ballot. I actually saw/heard one guy telling that to Senator Enzi and his wife Diana. ‘The Ron Paul people took over the Nominations Committee’ and Diana put her hand over her mouth and gasped, ‘OH NO!’ You would think someone just told her we killed her dog
There was a definite sick feeling at the convention. I didn’t see a rally behind Romney at all. It took all the Senators, the Governor and even the former VP of the U.S. (Dick Cheney) getting on stage and telling them to suck it up and vote for Romney; but the delegates did not vote Romney with excitement. They did it because they were told that there was no other choice that ‘could win.’” Read the rest here.
Politics is very much a contact sport that is fought in trench warfare. It’s gritty, it’s dirty and it’s corrupt. The elites who hold power will do anything to preserve their power.

Ron Paul is waging a Revolution more than he’s running to win an election because he knows the power players and what he’s up against. For Ron Paul, it’s all about educating folks on the issues so that they will someday have the knowledge and voting power to evict the traitors who are wholly owned subsidiaries of the banksters, military industrial complex and corporatist special interests. On that point alone, Ron Paul’s success can only be described as phenomenal and beyond our wildest expectations.

The results of state conventions and state executive committee meetings will start to roll in fast and furious. In Minnesota and Iowa, Ron Paul is heavily favored simply because Paulite grassroots succeeded in making substantial inroads into the state party machine. Upcoming conventions:

AK 4/26 –28, 27 delegates, including 3 unpledged. State Convention
DE 4/28, 17 delegates. State Convention
KS 4/28 40 delegates. State Party Committee Meeting
ME (5/5-6) 24 delegates. Maine District Caucuses and State Convention
NV (5/5-6) 28 delegates. State Convention
OK (5/11-12) 43 delegates, including 3 unpledged. State Convention
CT (5/18) 28 delegates, including 3 unpledged. State Committee Meeting
GA (5/18-19) 76 delegates. State Convention
MI (5/18-19) 30 delegates. Congressional District Caucuses/State Convention
MN (5/18-19) 40 delegates. State Convention
MS (5/18-19) 40 delegates, including 3 unpledged. State Convention
SC (5/19) 25 delegates. State Convention.

As most of the state conventions wrap up in April, May and June, Santorum and Gingrich delegates will probably go to Romney because they’ve both now endorsed Romney. For more information, please visit The Green Papers.

While it's true that the GOP machines employed ruthless and dirty tactics to shut out the Paulites, it's also true that liberty activist are the GOP's minority party crashers. Most Republicans are quite happy with the party just the way it is. The only real dispute within establishment Republican ranks is the social conservative agenda that makes party elites cringe. Both factions support statism, the wars, endless foreign interventionism, entitlements,the Nazified Police State and fascist crony capitalism.

Liberty activists can continue to play in the GOP's pond until they finally succeed in taking it over, something that will eventually happen. Meanwhile we need to do all that we can do to prevent Republican victories when the candidate is a statist neocon. That's something we can accomplish by supporting Gary Johnson in the event Ron Paul isn't the nominee and he probably won't be.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

How Sweet It Is - For Big Sugar Daddies & Other Corporate Welfare Queens

The cost to American consumers resulting from agricultural subsidies in terms of high food costs and the taxes needed to support one of the biggest corporate welfare boondoggles is a real shocker. Take milk for instance. Americans pay far more for milk under the subsidy system than they would pay under a true free market capitalist system because the subsidy costs are passed from taxpayers to dairy producers for the sole enrichment of the rich and powerful dairy industry.

In 2007, published a piece stating:
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development found that U.S. dairy policies create a 26 percent “implicit tax” on milk consumers. This milk “tax” is regressive, causing relatively greater harm to low-income families.
The Government Accountability Office compared U.S. dairy prices to world prices over a seven-year period. It found that U.S. prices for butter averaged twice the world price, cheese prices were about 50 percent higher, and nonfat dry milk prices were about 30 percent higher….
The ultimate effects are to transfer income from consumers and taxpayers to dairy businesses and to stifle innovation in this $90 billion industry.
Does Congress care one iota if Americans are being looted when they buy milk and other dairy products? Hell NO! Congress critters only care about having their campaign coffers filled with special interest dough even if consumers and taxpayers are stiffed.

In a article on sugar subsidies, it’s more than clear that Americans are looted by the U.S. sugar industry and Congress.

The sugar program is essentially a producer cartel run out of Washington. The Agriculture Department operates a complex loan program to guarantee sugar growers certain prices, which it enforces with import barriers and domestic production controls. 

The sugar program also causes environmental damage. Large areas of the Florida Everglades have been converted to cane sugar production as a result of sugar protection. That has caused damage from the related land drainage, runoff of chemical fertilizers, and the destruction of natural habitat. 

With all the negative effects of the sugar program, why does it survive? Because Congress often puts the interests of the favored few ahead of the general public good.

Besides charging American families higher than the “free market” cost of sugar and destroying the environment, the sugar subsidies really hurt the third world and their ability to dig their way out of poverty by exporting food stuffs. But Obama has proven to be very much a sugar daddy to big sugar and has continued Republican style agricultural welfare by implementing import quotas on imported sugar. Congress has been strengthening the power of the U.S. sugar cartel since the 1980’s. In America, you fill a few campaign coffers and you buy yourself an incredibly profitable legalized monopoly.

The high cost of sugar in the U.S. has cost 6,400 jobs in the sugar processing industry and the U.S. Trade Commission has the brazen audacity to claim that the program saves 2,200 jobs in the U.S. That’s government math in action – lose 3 jobs for every job it claims to save and drive up consumer food costs. Meanwhile, the number of sugar processing plants in the U.S. has dropped from 23 to 8 and producers making products containing sugar are moving out of the U.S. In Canada, sugar is 50% cheaper than in the U.S.

The Heritage Foundation had some choice words for farm subsidies, here:

These subsidy programs tax working Americans to award millions to millionaires and provide profitable corporate farms with money that has been used to buy out family farms. The current farm bills would provide even greater subsidies for large farmers...
Thus, large farms and agribusinesses--which not only have the most acres of land, but also, because of their economies of scale, happen to be the nation's most profitable farms--receive the largest subsidies. Meanwhile, family farmers with few acres receive little or nothing in subsidies. In other words, far from serving as a safety net for poor farmers, farm subsidies comprise America's largest corporate welfare program...
. It’s been estimated that agricultural subsidies add 10% to our food costs. Agricultural and food subsidies constitute a tax on consumers and a wealth transfer from the poor and middle class to very wealthy corporations. Moreover, food costs have risen substantially in recent years as a result of the 'inflation tax' attributable to unsustainable federal deficits and debt totaling over $15 trillion (and climbing).

But the situation of rising food costs is getting far worse because the outrageously stupid energy scam of churning our food into fuel (another taxpayer subsidized boondoggle) is causing massive global hungry as corn prices rise. The agricultural lobby known as Big Corn has now seized upon an opportunity to double its subsidies and welfare profits, first with food and now with the energy scam know as the ethanol boondoggle. Congress Critters also got their cut because every step along the way, somebody’s campaign coffer gets filled with special interest dough. Owning a legislative body is about the easiest way to make money and Congress and its Critters are cheap to buy.

Americans like to think that America is a humane nation who cares deeply about the plight of the poor in third world nations. Neither America nor any other westernized nation gives a hoot about the starving around the world. Farm subsidies only accomplish one thing – they vastly enrich US and European powerful agriculture interests at the expense of the starving third world simply because poor nations cannot produce and grow food stuffs when they are forced to compete with highly subsidized products produced in America and Europe.

Western corporate welfare queens are directly responsible for much of the human misery on the planet. Corporate welfare is not only the lifeblood of public corruption, it plunders American consumers and causes horrific suffering everywhere but especially in the 3rd world. American style subsidies keeps corporate welfare queens rich with subsidies while driving up the cost of just about everything. Consumers and taxpayers are always screwed.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

US Department of Defense is the Worst Polluter on the Planet

Our unconstitutional and murderous wars are destroying the planet and the US Military burns through about 350-400,000 barrels of oil a day. One of my favorite blogs ( posted some great information in a piece titled “The Elephant in the Room: The U.S. Military is One of the World's Largest Sources of C02” that includes:
"The military accounts for a full 80 percent of the federal government's energy demand."
Sixteen gallons of oil.  That's how much the average American soldier in Iraq and Afghanistan consumes on a daily basis -- either directly, through the use of Humvees, tanks, trucks, and helicopters, or indirectly, by calling in air strikes. Multiply this figure by 162,000 soldiers in Iraq, 24,000 in Afghanistan, and 30,000 in the surrounding region (including sailors aboard U.S. warships in the Persian Gulf) and you arrive at approximately 3.5 million gallons of oil: the daily petroleum tab for U.S. combat operations in the Middle East war zone.
And in 2008, Oil Change International released a report showing that:
The [Iraq] war is responsible for at least 141 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (MMTCO2e) since March 2003. To put this in perspective, CO2 released by the war to date equals the emissions from putting 25 million more cars on the road in the US this year.
The fact that the U.S. military is one of the world's largest sources of C02 is an open secret that no one is addressing. If C02 causes warming and the military is one of the largest producers of C02, then any talk of climate change which does not include the military is nothing but hot air.

Environmentalists Against War ( has listed many reasons to end our destructive wars and carbon burning foreign policy including:
War destroys human settlements and native habitats.
War destroys wildlife and contaminates the land, air and water. The damage can last for generations.
US clusterbombs, thermobaric explosions, electromagnetic bursts and weapons made with depleted uranium are indiscriminate weapons of mass destruction.
Bombs pollute, poisoning the land with unexploded shells and toxic chemicals. Bombs can't locate or neatly destroy hidden chemical or biological weapons (CBW), but they can cause the uncontrolled spread of deadly CBW agents.
Of course, you will never hear MSM ever discuss the environmental impact of our unnecessary and gargantuan military, its colossal carbon footprint or the massive environmental degradation resulting from military missions, invasions and occupations. Furthermore, there is no way anybody can seriously discuss energy or the environment without first acknowledging the monster appetite of the military for fuel and its effects on people and their environment. However, our military machine is all about money and lots of it; defense contractors could care less about dead people, environmental degradation or carbon footprints.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Is Obama's re-election in the bag?

The media has moved beyond the primary and has anointed Romney the presumptive Republican nominee. Now the chatter is focused on the general election and the state by state electoral count as the media, the RNC and the DNC ponder how to get to the magical number of 270 electoral votes to win. For the Republicans, it's a very difficult challenge as well as an uphill battle.

In 2008, Obama literally squashed McCain with 365-173 electoral votes in a truly pathetic finish for the Republicans. Bush/Cheney fatigue, war fatigue and Bankster bailout fatigue were all contributing factors to Obama's historic election. Most voters are reluctant to acknowledge that Obama is really Obushma; Obama's policies are no different than Bush policies.

Obama's astounding victory is attributable to the fact that he flipped 9 red states as he succeeded in shattering the red state/blue state divide by winning FL,CO,IN,IA,NM,NV,NC,OH and VA, all states that voted Republican in 2004. Can Obama do it again? To get to 270, he doesn't have to win all those red states he won in 2008; he only has to win a few. All the poll pundits are obviously tracking the polls in the critical swing states and most concluded, based on the polls, that Obama has a floor of 230-250 electoral votes. That's excellent news for The Democrats and very bad news for the Republicans. I did my own 'quick and dirty' calculations and concluded that Obama had a floor of 246 electoral votes simply because there are states that are so blue they will never flip red. Red states can  flip to blue but blue states rarely flip to red.

The biggest damage the Republicans have inflicted upon themselves, besides their utter determination to maintain the status quo (everything is fine just the way it is including the wars, the economy and the financial system), is the rabid rants of the social conservatives who have suggested that birth control be outlawed because it's a form of abortion. Moreover, the social conservatives are fighting hard for state and federal personhood amendments that define human life as beginning at the precise moment of conception. This in turn has devastated female support for Republicans who now have a 20 point deficit with the female voters. How will all of this shakeout in the general election? Just follow the polls in the swing states and it's clear that Obama has a huge advantage.

 The 9 red/purple states won by Obama in 2008 and the margin he won by.

FL -  29 electoral votes, won by Obama 51-48
OH - 18 electoral votes, won by Obama 52-47
NC - 15 electoral votes, won by Obama 50-49
VA - 13 electoral votes, won by Obama 53-47
IN -  11 electoral votes, won by Obama 50-49
CO -  9 electoral votes, won by Obama 54-45
IA -    6 electoral votes, won by Obama 54-45
NV -  6 electoral votes, won by Obama 55-43
NM - 5 electoral votes, won by Obama 57-42

That's a whopping 112 electoral votes that are up for grabs and in many of those states Obama is comfortably leading. Florida is a huge prize with 29 electoral votes, following by the others. All this begs the question: Does the GOP even stand a chance?

Stu Rothenberg ( is one of the best numbers crunching political pundits out there. Right now, his 2012 general election predictions are:

Democrat   232 (Safe Democrat and lean Democrat (MI,MN,NM & PA)
Republican 206 (Safe Republican and lean Republican (NC)

According to Rothenberg, 95 electoral votes are pure toss up - CO, FL, IA, NH, NV, OH, VA and WI.

What's different from 2008? Rothenberg says NM leans Democrat and Indiana and North Carolina lean Republican. He's also tossed in Wisconsin and New Hampshire into the pure toss-up mix.

Rothenberg's analysis is here.

Pundits typically play it safe and are very conservative in their estimates. Intrade, however, is the online gambling site that has a steller record at accurately calling election results based on the bets of its gambling participants. Right now Intrade has the probability of Obama winning at 60.9% and the probability of Romney winning at 38.1%.

How accurate was Intrade in 2008?  Intrade predicted a 364-174 electoral college Obama victory in 2008.  Obama actually won 365-173.

The pundits are none too happy that they now have to compete with with the gamblers for the lofty status of being the most accurate predictor of election results. graded the major pollsters in 2008 on accuracy and consistency.

Poll Score Grade
Rasmussen Reports,  A-
Ipsos/McClatchy, B+
CNN/Opinion Research, B+
Fox News, B
Pew,  B-
GWU/Battleground, C+
Diageo/Hotline, C+
NBC News/WSJ, C-
Gallup Traditional, C
Marist, D+
ABC/Wash Post,  D+
Gallup Expanded, D
CBS News/NYT, D-
Reuters/CSPAN/Zogby, F

Full results here

For Republicans to win the presidency in November will absolutely require that the GOP win a significant chunk of the swing states.  Increasingly, that's looking impossible.  The Republican Party has managed to alienate female voters,  youth voters, independent voters, Ron Paul supporters, Libertarians, anti-war voters and other constituencies that are just fed up with Republicans.  For these folks, Obama isn't the enemy but just a political twin of Bush and the Republicans.

What holds the potential to be interesting this year is if 3rd parties fare any better in the general election than they have in the past, particularly the Libertarian Party.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Let's Talk Taxes, Obama paid a lower effective tax rate than his secretary.

Drudge headlines today relate to the fact that Obama paid a lower tax rate than his secretary, despite huge differences in incomes.  The Obama's paid an effective federal tax rate of 20.5% on $789,674 in adjusted gross income. His secretary earns $95,000 a year but paid an undisclosed  'slightly higher rate'.  Drudge:

Could Have Paid $103,067 More In Taxes Without Bush Tax Cuts, Credits...
Kids get $48,000 -- tax free!
VEEP PAYS 23.2% RATE -- ON $379,035 INCOME...

The year John Kerry ran for president, his very wealth wife reported unearned income in excess of $5,000,000 yet she paid a paltry tax rate of about 12%.  I knew a truck driver who made under $50,000 a year but paid a higher effective tax rate.  Actually, the truck driver paid a much, much higher effective higher tax rate when Social Security taxes are factored in.  SS is purely a wage earners tax.  The website of SS says "For 2012, the maximum taxable earnings amount for Social Security (OASDI) taxes is $110,100. The Social Security tax rate for employees is 4.2 percent through the end of the year The Social Security tax rate for employers is 6.2 percent. The Medicare tax rate is 1.45 percent for employees and employers. Self-Employment The Social Security tax rate for self-employed is 10.4 percent through the end of the year. The Medicare tax rate is 2.9 percent for self-employed.", here.

Actually, the SS tax for the employee will increase when the temporary 2% tax cut expires at the end of the year.  But the employee really pays the full tax of 15.3% which is a floor of a minimum federal tax on the incomes of the poor and middle class.  The employer doesn't pay the tax which is considered just a routine payroll or labor expense and instead the employer functions as a tax collector.  Unearned income or income not earned by wages is not subject to Social Security and Medicare taxes. Even worse, the taxes that go into the SS Trust Fund are immediately spent by Congress who has plundered it to the tune of trillions by leaving a big pile of worthless IOU's that can never be repaid.  The SS money is spent on wars, pork, corporate welfare and other slop.

Taxes are always sold to the people as 'taxes on the rich'. According to the Treasury Department's own website, the income tax was described as follows (the link is no longer available):
By 1913, 36 States had ratified the 16th Amendment to the Constitution. In October, Congress passed a new income tax law with rates beginning at 1 percent and rising to 7 percent for taxpayers with income in excess of $500,000. Less than 1 percent of the population paid income tax at the time. Form 1040 was introduced as the standard tax reporting form…
Rich folks can afford an army of tax lawyers and tax accountants to engage in legal tax avoidance and they can also afford to fill campaign coffers with enough cash to get Congress Critters to pass tax avoidance laws. Obama is using his own tax return to advance the Buffet Tax, despite the fact that Obama didn't meet the million dollar threshold in AGI. Yet, it was his decision to avail himself of every possible tax deduction to lower his taxable income, including gifting his children $48,000 tax free. And Warren Buffet? Buffet has been fighting the IRS at least 15 years with his team of tax lawyers to avoid paying $1,000,000,000 (a billion) that the IRS says Buffett and/or his companies owe in back taxes.Most assuredly, Buffet has no intention of paying higher taxes.

It Turns Out Warren Buffett Is A Master Of Avoiding Taxes

So who pays the taxes?

As Leona Helmsley famously quipped 'We don't pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes'.  Indeed.

Of course, the biggest tax of all is the inflation tax that has wiped out 95% of the purchasing power of the dollar, courtesy of the Federal Reserve.  And that's a tax that was specifically designed by the Banksters and government to transfer wealth from the poor and middle class to the wealthy.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Bend Over and Spread Em says the Supreme Court

Regarding the recent 5-4 SCOTUS decision to uphold strip searches, Supreme Court Justice Breyer describes a strip search in his dissent (joined by Kagan, Gingsberg and Sotomayor) as follows:

 “‘..a visual inspection of the inmate’s naked body. This should include the inmate opening his mouth and moving his tongue up and down and from side to side, removing any dentures, running his hands through his hair, allowing his ears to be visually examined, lifting his arms to expose his arm pits, lifting his feet to examine the sole, spreading and/or lifting his testicles to expose the area behind them and bending over and/or spreading the cheeks of his buttocks to expose his anus. For females, the procedures are similar except females must in addition, squat to expose the vagina.’”

 The Supreme Court has upheld the right of the police to do this to anybody for any reason who has the misfortune of ending up in police custody for any reason, including minor traffic violations. For obviously justifiable reasons, this outrageously insane Supreme Court decision has fired up anger among civil libertarians on all sides of the political ideological spectrum. Pure and simple, it's a rape, it's a sexual assault and it's designed to be as humiliating and degrading as possible. A nation where state sanctioned sexual assault is codified into the law of the land has debauched itself to a level reminiscent of Nazi Germany and the most ruthlessly oppressive totalitarian regimes ever to exist.

 America, land of the free. BARF.... America is now more like Dr. StrangeGlove probing your every body orafice for maximum human degradation because that's what government does best.

Civil liberties legal expert John W. White, Rutherford Institute, discusses the vile strip search ruling:

 Strip-Searching America: Florence v. County of Burlington

A video:

Strip-Searching America

The Supreme Court strip search decision, here

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Will Justice Prevail in the Tragic Trayvon Martin Case?

The tragic shooting death of Trayvon Martin has entered a new phase with the arrest of George Zimmerman on a 2nd degree murder charge. After a thorough investigation, the State of Florida decided that sufficient evidence exists to charge Zimmerman with a homicide. No one knows the facts in this case but everyone is speculating, especially the media who literally fueled potential and actual racial violence. Many folks are of the opinion that racism is so widespread in America that justice is impossible.

On 5/19/09, two black teens entered an Oklahoma pharmacy with the intent to commit armed robber. One had a firearm. The white pharmacist accessed a firearm and fired, hitting one of the robbers. The unarmed teen fell to the floor bleeding from a head wound. The armed teen fled the pharmacy but the pharmacist followed him out of the store in pursuit but never caught him. The pharmacist returned to the store where the other teen was still down and bleeding on the floor but alive, if immobile. The pharmacist retrieved another firearm and fired 5 shots into him, killing him.

The case obviously had all the ingredients for a sensationalized media trial - a black teen was shot dead by a white man. Because the black teen was actually in committing a crime, many folks screamed that it was a case of legitimate self-defense. An Oklahoma jury did not agree, convicted the pharmacist of 1st degree murder (though the jury had other options, including lesser charges) and the pharmacist was sentenced to life in prison. Why? Because the assailant was down, bleeding, unarmed and no longer posed a threat; the moment the pharmacist retrieved another weapon and fired 5 more shots into him, he became a cold blooded killer who was no longer defending himself against a threat.

Oklahoma City pharmacist Jerome Ersland gets life; judge refuses to suspend any prison time

Our laws are based on the theory that you cannot use deadly forced unless you are threatened with deadly force.  In the case of Martin/Zimmerman, it's not clear if Zimmerman shot Martin dead as a legitimate act of self defense.  Martin wasn't committing a crime and was just a kid returning from a convenience store armed with a bag of Skittles and a can of ice tea.  Evidence does exist however that Zimmerman called 911, reported that Martin looked 'suspicious' and the police advised Zimmerman not to follow Martin.  Zimmerman disregarded the instructions of the police,  proceeded to follow Martin (stalking?) and the two engaged in a physical confrontation.

Whether this is a case of legitimate self-defense or just shooting a teen to death for no justifiable reason is something that will be left to a jury to decide after being presented with all the evidence.

Trying this case in the court of public opinion is inflammatory and definitely doesn't serve the interest of justice or racial harmony.  American juries take their responsibilities seriously, especially in cases of murder.  It's wise to allow the criminal justice system to do its job.  

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Let’s Do War by the Numbers Because We Love to Kill

Liberal or conservative, Republican or Democrat, Americans are addicted to the fantasy that war is noble, that murder is moral and that righteous people kill in the name of their flag. Last I checked, America hadn’t been invaded since the War of 1812 when the British military invaded and occupied America and the War of 1812 was indeed our fault because we attempted to militarily invade and occupy Canada. Yet, America has been involved in non-stop murderous wars for well over a century.

WW I resulted in the deaths of 35,000,000 folks. Historian Martin Gilbert puts the military death toll (soldiers killed) at 8,626 million. “The destructiveness of the First World War, in terms of the number of soldiers killed, exceeded that of all other wars known to history.”. But as with most wars, it is the civilians who bear the brunt of the horrors of war.

What caused WW I? A Serbian nationalist named Gavrilo Princip shoots and kills on June 28, 1914 Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife in Sarajevo, Bosnia (a component of the Austro-Hungarian Empire). Within weeks, Europe breaks out into total war. Two murdered members of a European royal house triggered the deaths of 35,000 folks.

 How did America get involved? No Americans were killed and all the insanity of Europe’s ruling families and its long history of wars and empires was not an American problem. But was it? America own brand of royalty, Wall Street banking houses, gambled heavily on the outcome of the WW I by funding the governments involved, notably Britain and France. The Banksters were losing their bets and were about to lose all their money so they hatched a plan to get America involved. The horror of that Bankster Bailout is documented here.

The bottom line is that the Wall Street banking houses not only succeeded in getting American into WW I, it also conned Congress into creating the Federal Reserve, a private banking monopoly that exists for no reason except to transfer wealth from the poor and middle class to the wealthy by covering their gambling losses. More importantly, the Federal Reserve is directly responsible for the rise of the military industrial complex and the massive concentration of wealth and power.

World War I was deceptively marketed as ‘the war to end all wars’. Of course, WW I only set the stage for WW II that killed at least another 50,000,000 folks (many historians put the WW II death toll at 60-70 million). Wall Street Banksters funded the rise of Hitler and made another bloody fortune off the ashes of dead bodies.

 Why do we have wars? We have wars for one reason and one reason only – we murder for Bankster and defense contractor profits. There’s nothing noble or moral or righteous about killing for profit.

With WW I and WW II killed a minimum of 85,000,000 million folks, how many more folks have been killed since the end of WW II? It’s estimated that America and American foreign policy are directly responsible for another 20,000,000-30,000,000 kills since the end of WW II.

“US covert and overt criminal Wars of Aggression caused 20-30 million deaths of human beings since World War 2, according to the outstanding documentation of James Lucas of The US use/support of armed attacks is documented in 37 countries, and in direct violation of treaties after both world forever end armed attacks unless first attacked by another nation’s government.”.  Read the rest here.
Major post WW II deaths include the death tolls from the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Wikipedia estimates the deaths from the Korean War at 2,500,000 – 3,500,000 and the deaths from the Vietnam War at 2,500,000-6,000,000, here.

Ironically, the Republican Party is now being dubbed the War Party and righteously so because the GOP’s Evangelical base screams for non-stop war, murder and plunder. But America’s conservative Republican Christians weren’t also a gang of murderous psychopaths and the GOP at one time opposed foreign interventions. In fact, WW I, WW II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War and the Balkan Wars were all initiated by liberal, progressive Democrats (Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Lyndon B. Johnson and Bill Clinton). Harry Truman also dropped two big atomic bombs on Japan, despite knowing that Japan would surrender, was unable to continue the war and was finished.

Let’s recap the war dead attributable to America, American foreign policy and American Banksters, all of which vastly enabled war by funding it while contributing to the massive death tolls.

WW I, 35,000,000 dead

WW II, At least 50,000,000 dead

Since the end of WW II, another 20,000,000 to 30,000,000 folks have died as a direct result of U.S. foreign interventionism.

American politicians love to talk about American Exceptionalism and the flag waving voters eat it up. We are exceptional all right – exceptional in the art of war and murder.

What has our lust for blood cost us? It’s cost us ‘Shock and Awe’ economic destruction. We are now barely a shadow of our once free and prosperous republic and we’ve morphed into Nazi Germany. America is now the Evil Empire that threatens life, peace and prosperity everywhere.

When will the American blood lust be satiated?  When Americans vote to fire the warmongers and replace them with constitutionalists who believe in the peaceful foreign policy of our founders.

Of all the enemies to public liberty, war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. James Madison

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