Obviously filmed by somebody very passionate about this extraordinarily breathtaking landscape which must be protected.
Please sign the petition! And you might as well click on the YouTube logo button at bottom right, and “like” the video while you’re there.
Public hearing held in Salt Lake City on March 16th, showing strong opposition to planned degradation of Utah lands, including the Bears Ears area.
‘America Is NOT Broke’: Michael Moore Speaks in Madison, WI — March 5, 2011
“Contrary to what those in power would like you to believe so that you’ll give up your pension, cut your wages, and settle for the life your great-grandparents had, America is not broke. Not by a long shot. The country is awash in wealth and cash. It’s just that it’s not in your hands. It has been transferred, in the greatest heist in history, from the workers and consumers to the banks and the portfolios of the uber-rich.”
— Michael Moore
According to economists Peter Lindert and Jeffrey Williamson, the Gini coefficient in this country is now the highest it has ever been. “We went from one of the most egalitarian places in the world to one of the least,” Williamson told the Washington Post. “What happened?”
In his chronicle of the young United States in the 1830s, Alexis de Tocqueville famously said that “nothing struck me more forcibly than the general equality of condition among the people.”
The Gini coefficient is a measure of inequality in which 0 is perfect equality and 100 would mean perfect inequality, or one person owning all the wealth. A recent study by the financial services corporation Allianz found that the U.S. had the most extreme wealth inequality in the world, with a score of 80.56 – the highest concentration of overall wealth in the hands of the proportionately fewest people.
Happy 4th of July! Robert Reich reminds us that democracy isn’t just a spectator sport.
In his book Leading From the Emerging Future, Otto Scharmer identifies 8 structural disconnects that are currently distorting our decision making, which result in collectively creating results no one actually wants. He observed:
The current system produces results that nobody wants. Below the surface of what we call the landscape of social pathology lies a structure that supports existing patterns.
The 8 disconnects are: Read the rest of this entry »
I’ve written about this dynamic before – as a nation we are collectively creating outcomes no one wants. The rise of Donald Trump has filled me with genuine horror. As political dysfunction deepens, the more “outsider” candidates like Trump attract support from a segment of population.
In a lengthy article at The Atlantic, Jonathan Rauch calls it the “Chaos Syndrome.” Rauch’s thesis is an extended metaphor about the immune system; he argues that the traditional political structures of American government and politics were an immune response to irresponsible politicians. In recent decades, those structures have been eroded to the point that they no longer function to protect the body politic. A key weakness in our system is a lack of a means by which politicians can be held accountable by one another for unacceptable behavior – in the British parliamentary system, an MP who behaves badly can be removed from office by their party. Our system provides no such remedies so a politician who can win a majority in their state or district can hold office even if every word and action embarrasses the party itself. Read the rest of this entry »
As the Dems sit in reached an emotional peak yesterday, Gohmert approached Democratic Rep. Corinne Brown and shouted “Radical Islam” at her. Brown represents Orlando.
Gohmert, like lots of right wingers, has decided to take Omar Mateen’s declaration that he was working of ISIS seriously and has decided that means he was a terrorist rather than a deeply fucked up person whose denial of his sexual orientation drove him to madness.
As I write this, the sit in continues with Democrat after Democrat making impassioned speeches concerning efforts to end gun violence. The parties are not the same.
Bears Ears buttes, Elk Ridge, San Juan County Utah
The Bears Ears National Monument proposal has been on the table since last year. There is some speculation that President Obama is readying a proclamation, despite a dire warning from Senator Orrin Hatch that it could result in an armed confrontation similar to the one at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon.
The monument proposal stands on its own considerable merits. Adequate protection of the area, particularly the archaeological sites of Cedar Mesa, is long overdue. A recent poll found 71 percent of Utahns support the Bears Ears monument. Additionally, Utah politicians could stand to benefit from a well-timed reminder that we the people own our public lands, not the corporations.
Rep. Chris Stewart recently tacked an amendment onto the Interior Appropriations Bill, seeking to prohibit new national monuments in Utah.
The Utah land grab agenda also includes Rep. Rob Bishop and Jason Chaffetz’ Public Lands Initiative (PLI), nicknamed the “Plundered Lands Initiative” by conservation groups. The representatives are still threatening to introduce this corporate-friendly development bill in Congress.
Gov. Gary Herbert is still proceeding with a threatened lawsuit aimed at seizing 30 million acres of our Utah public lands, a doomed gesture that may cost us $14 million.
The Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (GSENM) is currently celebrating its 20th anniversary. Despite the controversial 1996 proclamation by the Clinton administration, the GSENM is thriving today. Let’s hope President Obama is willing to counter the anti-public-lands Utah politicians with a resoundingly popular monument proclamation this summer.
Will the media report on the exit poll mystery that they have refused to report on for over the past decade? Now that it’s come to a RICO lawsuit against THEM, will they report that? 😀
Who among the presidential candidates is going to able to make the best case that he can’t be manipulated by the banks or the corporations? “He” is the operative word here? Face it: ordinary people from both allowed parties are upset at the establishment, and Hillary Clinton has been forced to take money from them and succumb to their rules. Trump has made promises to the establishment too, but we can’t know that until it’s too late.
I’m a 64 year old man, but there are other old men and women who feel like we’re not being listened to, or having our votes counted anymore. What kind of democratic republic is that?
I’m sure the younger “voters” are getting the fact that this primary is too complex for a reason, and total nonsense. We all are. Young people and old people who have been defined as stupid American voters are mad as hell, and aren’t going to take this shit any more! That’s my hope. Voting on corporate computer machines through the mail, online, or any other way is just madness. If you don’t get that, have your damn head examined!
The old, media maligned, anti-war youth, (hippies), are uniting with the new, maligned anti-war youth, who haven’t been given a stupid name yet. They’re called millennials until the war-happy media can figure out a more demeaning term.
Maybe I’m just an old asshole with another opinion, but watch this, instead of watching the petrified “main steam” media, who’ve been slapped with a RICO lawsuit if you want to keep up:
UPDATE: Hell, don’t let Russian Television, “Redacted Tonight” shape your mind. Watch the whole two and a half hours of the meeting and decide for yourself. Lot’s more angering information here, if you dare:
The corporate media have made no secret of their plan to declare Hillary Clinton the Democratic nominee on June 7th as soon as the polls close in New Jersey (while Californians are still voting). This is wrong. The nomination remains UNDECIDED until the super-delegates vote on July 25th!
Mark that on your calendar. July 25th. And plan to March for Bernie at Liberty Park on Sunday, July 24th.
I’m a lifelong democrat because, although I cared about having enough to survive without asking anybody for money, I never really cared about being rich and used to hear all the time, that the democratic party was the “party of the people”. I have been lucky enough, as a privileged, 64 year old white man, to say I have never asked anybody for money so far. In fact, I’ve only asked for a raise on my job about twice. My mother insists on giving us kids a monetary gift now and then which I keep telling her not to. I have more then enough to get by, unless something pretty bad happens.
I just don’t see Hillary Clinton as leading anything close to a party of the people. There are actual, establishment television news shows – including shows on MSDNC – that are seriously questioning Hillary’s ability to be the president. Chuck Todd even said she probably wouldn’t be able to be appointed as attorney general with the questions being raised about her – “damn” – E-mails.
A serious comedy program compiles a couple clips from the corporate media here:
I don’t think the MSM is allowed to tell us what is happening behind the scenes and even the “Redacted Tonight” clip didn’t touch on it. For that we have to rely on another internet source that corporate advertisers would never finance. Even the title of this article by respected, but largely unknown, journalist, Robert Parry, doesn’t get to it, although the article does:
Two Washington insiders – Democratic pollster and political adviser Douglas E. Schoen and famed Watergate investigative reporter Carl Bernstein – have described panicky meetings of top Democrats worried over Clinton’s troubled campaign, with Schoen also describing private talks about possible last-minute alternatives.
I’ve heard similar tales of hushed discussions – with the fill-in options including Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry or Sen. Sanders – but I still believe these fretful leaders are frozen by indecision and don’t have the nerve to pull Hillary Clinton’s hands off the steering wheel even to avoid disaster.
Joe Biden? John Kerry?
Well anyway, I didn’t want to leave the rumbling problems in the republican party out here. Everybody knows they’re at least as bad as the democrat ones. Republicans are good little soldiers and are lining up behind a pathological liar for their candidate because the brat seems to have told them he will cooperate.
Bill Kristol, editor of his dad-founded “Weekly Standard”, who has never really been on-the-rails, but is always asked to comment on the TV anyway for some reason, is seriously flummoxed by the Trump thing. He has recently announced his solution to the 2016 problem:
Over the holiday weekend, the Weekly Standard chief confidently tweeted: “There will be an independent candidate—an impressive one, with a strong team and a real chance.
Well, at least David French is friends with Jonah Goldberg, – yes that Jonah Goldberg – who even gets to be a regular pundit on NPR for some reason. When asked about Kristols pick on NPR, he laughed. He likes his friend, but can’t really see him as leader of the free world right now. Besides, French isn’t sure he wants the job and nobody has any idea who he is. But that’s our Bill; always wrong and omnipresent.
Do you think all the people who have been filling up stadiums all over the country for that other guy, will be happy to have the democrats pop up with Kerry or Biden?
Milky Way viewed from Arches National Park
“The national park idea, the best idea we ever had, was inevitable as soon as Americans learned to confront the wild continent not with fear and cupidity but with delight, wonder, and awe.”
2016 is the 100-year anniversary of the founding of the National Park Service (NPS). But because of chronic neglect and under-funding from Congress, the NPS is set to adopt a very bad idea for our national parks: Corporate sponsorships sold to the highest bidder that run the risk of plastering our most treasured sites of America’s natural heritage with corporate branding and logos. Park employees would be directly engaged in soliciting funds from corporations.
This policy change came as a consequence of the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act, which compels the NPS to increase private funding through “donor recognition.”
The NPS annual budget of $3 billion isn’t enough to catch up on an estimated $11.49 billion in deferred maintenance costs in our national parks. As National Park Foundation president and CEO Will Shafroth told the Washington Post, “The parks don’t have enough money to accomplish their goals.” Private and corporate donations are needed to fill the gaps.
The new rules, that will take effect by the end of the year, would “swing open the gates of the 411 national parks, monuments and conservation areas to an unprecedented level of corporate donations.”
The comment period has already closed on the order from NPS Director Jarvis that would allow parks to start selling “naming rights,” which would allow the highest corporate bidder to place their name or logo – like a Nike Swoosh or a Starbucks logo – directly on select spaces and areas of our national parks like park buildings, benches, auditoriums, and visitor centers.
Tell Interior Secretary Sally Jewell to pull the plan to commercialize our national parks. And let’s tell our congressional delegation to fund the parks in the federal budget. Some Utah national parks are now charging a $30 entrance fee.
Yosemite, sponsored by Starbucks? National Parks to start selling some naming rights
Donor Naming Rights in U.S. National Parks – Is Brouhaha Justified?
No, the U.S. National Parks Will Not Be Sponsored by Viagra
This year’s Democratic Party convention in Philadelphia July 25–28 will be the first in which super-delegates will make the decision on a presidential nominee. The questions that will be asked: (1) Are super-delegates supposed to choose the most electable candidate? or (2) Were super-delegates given the job of making sure the establishment-chosen candidate wins over an insurgent?
What is a super-delegate? From Wikipedia:
[A] “superdelegate” is a delegate to the Democratic National Convention who is seated automatically and chooses for whom they want to vote. These Democratic Party superdelegates include distinguished party leaders, and elected officials, including all Democratic members of the House and Senate and sitting Democratic governors. … Because they are free to support anyone they want, superdelegates could potentially swing the results to nominate a presidential candidate who did not receive the majority of votes during the primaries.
Why does the Democratic Party have super-delegates?
The super-delegate story begins with the traumatic 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago, which resulted in the nomination of then Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey (President Lyndon Johnson decided not to run for re-election that year after being challenged by popular anti-Vietnam War candidate Rep. Eugene McCarthy). There was widespread dissatisfaction among the voters because Humphrey did not compete in any primary elections. Humphrey lost the general election to Richard M. Nixon.
A commission headed by South Dakota Senator George McGovern and Minnesota Representative Donald M. Fraser met in 1969 and 1970 to make the Democratic Party’s nominating convention less subject to control by party leaders and more responsive to the votes cast in primary elections. The rules implemented by the McGovern-Fraser Commission shifted the balance of power to primary elections and caucuses, mandating that all delegates be chosen via mechanisms open to all party members. The number of state primaries increased from 17 in 1968 to 35 in 1980.
Despite a huge increase in the level of primary participation, McGovern’s 1972 presidential run resulted in a landslide defeat for the party. The same thing happened in President Jimmy Carter’s 1980 race against Ronald Reagan. Party leaders established another commission in an attempt to balance the wishes of rank-and-file Democrats with the collective wisdom of party leaders and to thereby avoid the nomination of insurgent candidates. Following a series of meetings held from August 1981 to February 1982, the Hunt Commission issued a report which recommended the set aside of un-elected and un-pledged delegate slots for Democratic members of Congress and for state party chairs and vice chairs.
The problem for the 2016 election
Neither Dem candidate is likely at this point to finish the primary campaign with a majority of pledged delegates. Un-pledged super-delegates make up about 15% of the overall convention votes, and these delegates will choose the party’s nominee in July.
According to former Vermont Governor, DNC Chair and now lobbyist/super-delegate Howard Dean, “Super delegates don’t ‘represent people.’ I’m not elected by anyone. I’ll do what I think is right for the country.” (86% of voters in this year’s Vermont primary election chose Bernie Sanders, but Dean remains committed to voting for Hillary Clinton at the convention).
Of course, the assumption has always been that Democratic insurgent candidates like Bernie would be less electable in the general election. In 2016 it looks like this isn’t a good year for establishment candidates like Hillary Clinton. A lot of people thought we were doomed to a Bush-Clinton contest, but Donald Trump won so much support among Tea-GOP voters that he’s their presumptive nominee. And it looks like Bernie is the more electable Democratic candidate.
Hillary Clinton Now Loses to Trump in Polls. Bernie Sanders Beats Trump by 10.8 Points. (Hillary’s poll numbers have gone down, however she is within the margin of error against Trump — and the Democrats can expect a built-in advantage in the Electoral College, the so-called “Blue Wall”).
It’s up to the super-delegates to decide. Win with Bernie (and nudge the party to the center) or risk losing with Hillary (confirming that right-wing Dems cause progressives to abandon the party).