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Wednesday, 16 September 2009 05:18

BuzzFlash Mailbag for September 16, 2009

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Subject: Obama in Pittsburgh

It was nice having our President back - if only for a day. This was the President that I'd hoped we'd elected back in October of last year. What a contrast to the man speaking on Wall Street just a day earlier. Since the 2K election we've had to endure the spectacle of democratic leaders weakly supporting strong ideas while republicans win converts through their strong support of essentially weak ideas. Even in today's environment where the consequences of embracing weak ideas, however strongly, have made themselves manifest in so many ways, republicans seem in total shock and disbelief at what their failed policies have wrought. Emblematic of their failure and most resented of all is the President himself. Democrats on the other hand seem to have acquired their own special strain of Stockholm Syndrome and just can't seem to imagine doing anything that their erstwhile tormentors would not approve. Seeing Obama back in fighting form before the AFL/CIO conference audience was enough to ignite new hope that he and other democratic leaders can severe their vestigial ties to republicans and actually lead the country out of the morass that the republicans largely created. Leadership is more than just turning words and phrases inside-out and upside-down - effectively stripping them of any real meaning whatsoever - so that they can be offered up in support of the republican's twisted ideology.

I'm just assuming that they don't really expect the public to believe that President Obama is simultaneously a Nazi, a socialist, a fascist, a communist and the devil himself - that's a lot of political ground to cover even if he were the devil. It's also a bit of stretch to believe that Americans have "fought and died" to protect us from universal health care. Wasn't it President Roosevelt who led the nation out of a republican depression, through WWII and was the architect of the Social Security program? The great nation that they "want back" was largely built by democrats who aspired to ideas bigger than self and dedicated to visions beyond what merely serves the moment.

It seems to me that President Obama has more than a little of the wisdom in him, that Justice Sotomayor alluded to in her "wise latina" statement that drew such scorn and even charges of "rascism" from republicans. The very concept that a life can be enriched and that a person can become stronger and wiser from experiencing discrimination and prejudice is anathema to racists everywhere. It was why the students who got to hear the President's recent back-to-school speech listened with such rapt attention. There was very little applause, but you could almost hear the gears turning as they listened to the very personal life stories that the President shared with them. It clicked. It applied to them and they knew it. I'm sure that it will have a meaningful impact on many of them and it was a lesson plan that every school child in the nation should have been allowed to hear and benefit from. In my opinion it was one of Obama's very best speeches - rivaling even President Clinton's address to the students, parents, faculty and staff at Columbine High School.

But Obama's address before the AFL/CIO conference is cause for every democrat to not abandon hope. We all know that the President is a very good man - if he weren't how could he have such a wonderful family and be the person that he rather obviously is? That's never been a question for me. My problem with Obama is that he likes to be liked too much. That's not a bad trait for a person to have - but it is a bad trait for a President to have. To move our country forward he's going to have to get things done - things that will not be popular with everyone - at least not until after they're done and people are reaping the benefits of living in a greater, more prosperous society. To make that happen he's going to need to be more of the President that we saw in Pittsburgh today. Of all the "experts" in his cabinet and amongst his counselors, he should perhaps be listening first to Michelle, our First Lady, there's a lot of strength there and some "wise latina" as well.

Tim Mooring
San Francisco


Subject: The Health Care Debate

I've been without health insurance for alomst ten years. My wife is disabled, and we scrimped and saved and bought a used power chair for her.

I tried moving it the other day, and wrenched the muscles in my side severely.

Rep. Mike Ross thinks there should be no public option. Meanwhile I can't pay for a doctor visit, much less treatment.

And guess what? I WORK FOR THE STATE HEALTH DEPARTMENT!

Oh, Irony.

Mike Curtis
Greenbrier Ark


Subject: Negotiating strategy

Sept. 16, 2009

Hey Buzz,

Some of the traditional scolds in the Democratic Party, who fancy themselves to be "realists", I guess, are at present busily excoriating others in the party who continue to hold out obstinately for a truly traditional, honest to goodness, Democratic piece of legislation, such as, for example, H.R. 676. These same scolds, almost to a person, demur that while they too support H.R. 676 or some close variation thereof, the votes for passage are not there, and anyone who continues to push for such a "dream" is either a fool, or an idiot, or both. At least, it would seem, we all can agree that we are in favor of H.R. 676 or some close variation thereof.

So, if I understand the argument correctly, this, then, is the reason that we took single payer off the table at the outset; i.e., because the votes were not there from the beginning. Leaving aside the fact that at the beginning of the process, voting positions are not all set in concrete, the more fundamental question revolves around whether or not this constitutes sound negotiating strategy? As we all seem to agree that the "pure" Democratic position in this case is the ideal position and the one that we all want to see happen, does it make sense, from a strategic vantage point, to remove it from the table? Given that we likely may not get everything that we want, how do we maximize the chances that the final product will be as close as possible to what we want?

I would contend that the way to maximize the chances of achieving the final result that we desire is by presenting a united front of strong advocacy for the "pure" Democratic position. This is the way to move the window of acceptability to the maximum in the direction of our goal. Whereas if we start from a position in the center, or a bit to the right of center, as the case may be, then the end result will be invariably and heavily skewed to the right. And this is why I believe it was a serious strategic mistake (I hope it was unintentional) to take single payer off the table.

Interestinly, Buzz, single payer is already well within the window of acceptability, if polling data on the issue of health care reform are to be believed. All the more reason for the Democratic Party to be unified behind and strongly advocating for this position. I believe we are being presented with an historic window of opportunity, if we would only be perceptive enough to seize the moment. That's why I wholeheartedly back those who continue to aggressively advocate for single payer.

Best regards,

G. Will Hunter
Indianapolis, IN.


Subject: Latest Media Buzz

Ridiculous! Now we're being bombarded by the "fact" that Obama allegedly called Kanye West a "jackass" for Kanye's boorish and rude actions and behavior at the VMAs, or the CMAs or whichever music awards show it was -- it could have been the MBAs for all most people probably give a crap.

That is followed by the "buzz" that President Jimmy Carter had the guts to put into words what I lot of us believe: The venom and hostility displayed towards President Obama by some of the whacked out "Republicans" over the summer.

It's about damned time that people start calling a "spade a spade" and not call a spade a "handheld digging" tool.

I was thinking yesterday about all the media hype about the death of Michael Jackson and how little has been mentioned about the death of the fine actor-dancer Patrick Swayze.

The Republicans rant, rave and throw hissy fits about how America needs to return to its "Christian" values, yet they don't remember it is the so-called "Christian values" crowd that is fueling a lot of this crap.

The world would be an infinitely better place if we just learned how to treat each other with dignity and respect no matter who they are, no matter their religion or creed, not matter their sex, nor their sexual preference.

We are all here -- now -- in the present. We have no control over yesterday or tomorrow at all. We can only influence today, the here and now. There's a short saying that sums it all up very succinctly: "Today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday." In other words, make the most of each day.

It seems the ones with the questionable values are those who claim to be the most righteous. But, isn't that the way it always seems to be?

L M Johnson
Tacoma WA


Subject: Health Care Insurance and Computer O/S

Hi BuzzFlash

I am a firm believer in having the Public Option, available for people to pick if the Health Insurance Industry gives people such a hard time about getting coverage - even if you have been loyally paying your premiums year after year.

Allow all three types of Insurance Coverage... Large Health Care Insurance Companies, Public Option and Co-Ops.

Think of Health Care Insurance in terms of the types of Computers and the Operating Systems that come with them.

You mostly see MICROSOFT O/S Computers being used by people. That's your typical Health Insurance Company that most people use.

If you do not like Microsoft or keep having problems with their sorfware, you can choose Apple Macintosh Computers, which would be your "Public Option" alternative.

And for some people that like to get their hands dirty and build their own computers by using Linux O/S, this would be the Co-Op Health Insurance Alternative, that is used by just a few people and farmers in the west who create their own insurance companies.

This gives EVERYBODY a chance to pick the type of Health insurance Company or Plan they want. The people in the Insurance Industry win, the people that want Public Option win and the western Senators that want Co-Ops win.

If this can't get more Moderate People to support the Health Care Reform Legislation, then they are just pulling your leg when they tell you "they want to negotiate". They really want no part of it - like we have seen since Teddy Roosevelt! They're kidding nobody!

Tom Wieliczka
Windsor Locks, CT


Subject: copy of letter, Anti-McDonnell, VA Gov hopeful, 9-15-09

Anti-McDonnell, VA Gov hopeful, 9-15-09 Good afternoon;

Mr. McDonnell, your history, speeches and writings demonstrate that you have an unhealthy obsession with other people's sexual interests and activities. Unhealthy for you and for Virginia.

In fact, I see much that concerns me when considering your candidacy for Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and that includes your record of wanting to censor what the Citizens of the Commonwealth can read and watch. Censorship violates the First Amendment to OUR Constitution, that of Free Speech, and is one of the early steps toward authoritarian rule.

I will work to ensure that you do not win the Office of Governor, because your vision for the Commonwealth of Virginia and this Country is opposite that of our Founders. They left England to be freed of people like you, and we still want to be free of them.

Bill Darbyshire
Galien, MI


Subject: The uninformed don't want to know

Most of the people here are as described by Scott of Fayetteville. It is hard to tell if they are ignorant or just do not want the truth to interfere with their biases. The facts re our economy as listed by the former fighter pilot from San Antonio are the true facts; yet these idiots try to lay it all on to President Obama.

This past weekend, in a meeting with what I thought were intelligent people, I heard statements confirming that racial prejudice is the underlying motivation for the craziness we are seeing and hearing.

I have never felt more contempt for the radio and TV hate-mongers -- and for the Republicans -- than I do now.

I spent a week in IBM training school in Dallas two weeks before JFK was murdered. Upon my return home, I told my fellow workers that I feared for the president's life if he went to Dallas. The reason? Dallas newspapers had full-page ads spewing vile hatred toward Kennedy, as well as non-stop denouncing of JFK on radio and TV. Most of these were paid for by multimillionaire oilmen.

Look at all the Democrat leaders and potential leaders with strength and courage who have been assassinated or died under mysterious circumstances. People who would permit signs such as those at the "tea party", who would condone such, would stop at nothing!

I have found it is not possible to sway the Repugs with facts; they will believe what they want.

Creed Ballew
Arkansas


Subject: TARP and banker's pay

Any bank that took Tarp money and has executives making more than the President should have executives automatically audited by the I.R.S. Their companies are afloat with tax payer money. Let's make sure they are paying their fair share.

We will have high turnover is my guess.

Steve
Holland, MI


Subject: Suggested Signs and Posters for Next Wingnut Rally

• I AM HEAR BECAUSE I AM AN UNINFORMED INDIOT • FOX NEWS TOLD ME TO BE HERE AND HERE I IS • I DON'T NEED NO STINKIN HEALTH CARE. AND NEITHER DO MY KIDS • I AM AFRAID OF SOCIALISM WHATEVER THAT IS • NO NEGRO HAS A RIGHT TO BE PREZDENT • RACISM IS WRONG. BUT OBAMA SHOULD BE PICKIN COTTON • I WANT MY COUNTRY BACK LIKE WHEN PREZDENTS WAS ALWAYS WHITE • OBAMA GO BACK TO KENYA WHERE YOU WUZ BORN. • HITLER VOTED FOR OBAMA FROM THE GRAVE • IF I KNEW WHY I WAS HERE, I WOLD BE AT HOME • OBAMA LOOKS EXACTLY LIKE STALIN ONLY WITHOUT THE MUSTACHE • HEALTH CARE IS STUPID. LET'S SPEND THE MONEY ON ANOTHER WAR • IF YOU GET SICK, GET UP AND WALK IT OFF LIKE A GOOD AMURICAN • DON'T SPEND MORE MONEY ON HEALTH CARE, SPEND IT ON OPERATION IRAQI LIBERATION • PROTECT OUR CONTSTIUNION LIKE THE WAY GEORGE BUSH DID.

Russ
L.A.


Subject: what makes ICH stand out amongst the others:

Another problem that the 9/11 Truth Movement faces is that their natural allies, those who oppose the Bush/Obama wars and the internet sites that the antiwar movement maintains, are fearful of being branded traitorous and anti-American. It is hard enough to oppose a war against those the US government has successfully demonized. Antiwar sites believe that if they permit 9/11 to be questioned, it would brand them as "terrorist sympathizers" and discredit their opposition to the war. An exception is Information Clearing House.

A BuzzFlash Reader


Subject: Capitalism's One-Sided Recovery In Southern California*

One-sided in that business-related economic indicators are slightly up compared to last few months (home prices & sales, exports, tourism) whereas, people-related indicators are worse (unemployment rate & home foreclosures). Thus, while the haves may be doing slightly better, the have-nots are not only doing worse, they're increasing in numbers. Why then is this slight upward tick called an economic recovery?

Because the powers that be couldn't care less about what happens to the rest of us, particularly the have-nots & left-outs. If that wasn't so we'd have a single payer health system, since that's the only way that the uninsured can receive health care. What's more there'd be enough jobs that unemployment would be close to zero, which would eliminate homelessness,

And the children of the inner city and rural poor no loner would be sent off to die in Iraq and Afghanistan, being that, if the powers that be really cared, there'd be no war no more, nowhere, never, not even one. But they don't care and the proof is that the LA Times (a so-called newspaper of record) is calling this slight uptick in selected indices the beginning of economic recovery. How dare they when so many of us are down and out, not just temporarily but permanently. Shame on the LA Times.

*"Southland's vital signs improving+ - Today's LA Times

A BuzzFlash Reader


Subject: Sept. 15 Mailbag

The letters in the September 15 Mailbag were all excellent. I especially agree with Tim Mooring that the Obama adminsitration has been all talk and no action. He is still giving empty campaign style speeches full of high sounding rhetoric but no details, no real plan of action. President Franklin Roosevelt didn't inspire people by saying I don't know what to do but I will compromise if somebdoy can give me some good ideas.

Larry
Maryland


Subject: From Paul Craig Roberts,a former Reagan administration official:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article23498.htm

The staying power of the Big Lie is the barrier through which the 9/11 Truth Movement is finding it difficult to break. The assertion that the 9/11 Truth Movement consists of conspiracy theorists and crackpots is obviously untrue. The leaders of the movement are highly qualified professionals, such as demolition experts, physicists, structural architects, engineers, pilots, and former high officials in the government. Unlike their critics parroting the government’s line, they know what they are talking about. Here is a link to a presentation by the architect, Richard Gage, to a Canadian university audience: http://globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=13242 The video of the presentation is two hours long and seems to have been edited to shorten it down to two hours. Gage is low-key, but not a dazzling personality or a very articulate presenter. Perhaps that is because he is speaking to a university audience and takes for granted their familiarity with terms and concepts. Those who believe the official 9/11 story and dismiss skeptics as kooks can test the validity of the sociologists’ findings and Hitler’s observation by watching the video and experiencing their reaction to evidence that challenges their beliefs. Are you able to watch the presentation without scoffing at someone who knows far more about it than you do? What is your response when you find that you cannot defend your beliefs against the evidence presented? Scoff some more? Become enraged?

A BuzzFlash Reader


Subject: The Turnabout Of 2009

Said Turnabout came on the heels of a right-wing resurgence made possible during the first year of the Obama presidency by his constant caving and back-sliding to right-wing demands. The central issue at the time was health care, with the Afghanistan/Iraq/Pakestan wars, the Wall Street bailouts and global warming also getting considerable attention. On account of President Obama's and the Democratic Congress' reneging on their campaign promises, progressives were rapidly losing heart and becoming disillused about the chances, not only for meaningful change, but of reversing the descent into fascism initiated during the presidency of George W. Bush II.

The distinguishing features of the 2009 Turnabout were its spontaneity and its universality. Beginning on college and high school campuses and then spreading like wild fire to factories, shopping malls and, before long, even to rural areas, people gathered together, chanting Yes We Can, singing We Shall Overcome and demanding change.

Why did the Turnabout begin with college and high school students? Seems that the future appeared too stark, too uninviting for them, with the normal optimism of youth giving way to the sense of an impending doom, whereupon, the thought "Not over my dead body cause I've got a life to lead", and that was all it took.

A BuzzFlash Reader


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