Watch the great Robert Reich do what he does best: brilliantly educating and debunking the harmful lies that keep us from having an intelligent discussion about our economy.
As the Former Labor Secretary says in the opening: Big lies start to be believed unless they are rebutted with the truth.
Watch and learn.
Watch: Robert Reich – 7 Lies – YouTube.
You know you want to peek…
Yes, it’s been a couple weeks since our last Horny Boobsday.
But you’ll get over it. Because Boobs.
Click here for all the Boobsday Glory
My first report as correspondent for 4TT News: “Defending” Dan Snyder and presenting the pro-Redskins argument in all of its totally-not-racist glory.
Not exactly the most Politically Correct presentation.
But some food for thought for those that doubt the continuing harm to Native Americans in our country:
Native Americans rank Worst in the US: Poverty Rate, Unemployment Rate, Rate of Disease, Rate of Substance Abuse, Death Rates, Uninsured Rates (Wikipedia)
And or those of you that feel bad for the Snyder and the Redskins for having to shoulder the cost of re-branding, consider this:
Snyder’s Redskins are the 3rd most valuable NFL team ($1.7billion), annual revenue around $373 million, with a yearly operating income over $104 million (Forbes)
But hey, it’s football, and nothing in America outranks the NFL - even if it glorifies systematic genocide. Man, if only it was all caught on an elevator security camera – then maybe people would be outraged.
Watch: Defending Dan Snyder – Warning: Politically Incorrect – YouTube.
Looks like Zack Snyder wisely combined elements of Tim Burton’s iconic winged Batmobile and Christopher Nolan’s “realistic”, militarized Tumbler.
Hey, chicks dig the car.
Cannot possibly overstate the importance and brilliance of this video. Using actual kids from Ferguson, Missouri, this video sarcastically educates about the reality of racism, and pleads with white America to not only get over hatred and preducide, but to get over pretending racism doesn’t exist.
Please watch and share this.
Watch: Hey White People: A Kinda Awkward Note to America by #Ferguson Kids – YouTube.
As usual, Jon Stewart and The Daily Show blow up the bullshit spewed from (mostly white) people regarding police brutality in Ferguson — and how those same poor white-folk are sick of having to talk about (and defend) systematic racism while minorities have their lives ruined by it.
Watch: Race/Off – The Daily Show – Video Clip | Comedy Central.
That’ll buff out.
Coverage of the events unfolding in Ferguson has been suspect at best, with most outlets sensationalizing every racial aspect in the book and seemingly begging for an eruption of conflict.
Fortunately CNN’s Jake Tapper actually got it right with his blatant disgust at the absurdity of the militarized police in Downtown USA:
I just want to show you this, Don. I just want to show you this, okay? This is just give you an idea of what’s going on. The protesters—here’s this main intersection—the protesters have moved all the way down there. They’re about half a block down. Here, Don, watch with me. They’re all the way down there. Okay? Nobodies threatening anything, nobodies doing anything, none of the stores here that I can see are being looted. There’s no violence. Now I want you to look at what is going on in Ferguson, Missouri, in downtown America. Okay? These are armed police. With machine, not machine guns, with semi-automatic rifles, with batons, with shields, many of them dressed for combat. Now why they’re doing this, I don’t know because there is no threat going on here, none [pointing to protesters] that merits this [pointing to police line]. There is none. Okay? Absolutely there has been looters, absolutely over the last nine days there has been violence, but there is nothing going on, on this street right now, that merits this scene out of Bagram. Nothing. So if people wonder why the people of Ferguson, Missouri, are so upset, this is part of the reason. What is this? [gesturing to police line] This doesn’t make any sense.
What the F is going on in this country?
Read: When the media gets it right on Ferguson, Missouri.
Great post from The Ryno’s cousin, Brad Bauman, on how the situation in Ferguson is a reflection of the ills of the state of our Union, and what we can do as a People to fix it. From Blue Nation Review:
I love this country and have dedicated my entire adult life to public service in hopes that I could make it better. That’s why the events that have transpired over the past few days in Ferguson, Missouri have troubled me to the core. The unprovoked attack on American citizens exercising their constitutional rights by a police force using tanks, military grade armor and tactics designed to quell foreign populations in a war zone is evidence of a much more sinister turn for America—a canary in the coal mine if you will, signifying a scary reality: This America no longer resembles the America of our dreams and aspirations.
The Bill or Rights was written precisely to protect the ability of 200 Americans to peacefully protest the senseless murder of young man by a Police Department and to allow the press to freely and fairly report on those protests without being intimidated to shut off their cameras or arrested for doing their jobs. But should we surprised? Over the last decade and a half we’ve seen the Bill of Rights repeatedly stepped on, denying due process to American citizens, the unrestrained monitoring of our personal conversations, no-fly lists and even the presumption of guilt rather than the presumption of innocence.
To make matters worse, the politicians who we have sent to our state capitals and Washington, D.C. are either not equipped or not interested in making the changes we need right now. Further, it is becoming exceedingly more difficult to elect people who are. Our most sacrosanct right as a citizen—our ability to vote, is under attack. All over America, politicians are doing everything in their power to restrict the ability of people like you and me to show up to the polls and hundreds of millions of dollars in dark money are being spent by millionaires, billionaires and large corporations who are singularly focused on protecting their ability to make money at the expense of our interests.
Where does this leave us? We are less free, less secure and are being denied the ability to vote for new elected officials who are up for the challenge of reversing course. I’d argue that this isn’t a coincidence, it is by design and is being done explicitly to protect the needs of the richest among us and multinational corporations, and our functional need to serve them and their interests.
America is at a turning point and we have some serious decisions to make. Unfortunately for us the system has become an impediment to change rather than a vehicle for change. I fear that things will only get worse and not better until we start having a real discussion in this country about systemic changes and updates to our Constitution that will clarify our rights and responsibilities as citizens and create new limits to the power of our police, military, intelligence services, corporations and politicians.
First and foremost, we need to amend the constitution to clarify that corporations are not people and that the money they spend on elections is not speech. Almost every single thing that is currently happening to restrict the rights of people like you and me has its root in the hundreds of millions of dollars being spent to prop up candidates who no longer represent our needs. In just four years, our entire electoral system has been turned on its head since the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. This represents the single greatest threat to our traditional and peaceful transition of power. I fear that if we don’t address this soon Americans will lose all faith in change within the system and seek to change it through more radical means.
Second, we need to codify a right to privacy in the Constitution. Our founding fathers never included a right to privacy in the Constitution but addressed it in the 1st, 3rd, 5th and 9th amendments in such a way that the Supreme Court has traditionally ruled in favor of a broad definition of privacy as one of our rights. Unfortunately, throughout the late 20th century, our understanding of privacy has changed but our rights and responsibilities under the Constitution has not. By explicitly listing a right to privacy in the Constitution, we can begin to roll back the worst aspects of the PATRIOT Act and address the massive state-sponsored intrusion into our personal lives by the NSA.
Third, we need to radically alter the way that we transfer equipment and training from the military to our local police. Grants for the Department of Homeland Security to local police departments under the idea that they need to get ready for unspecified terrorist attacks have turned our police departments into paramilitary organizations. The tragedy occurring in Ferguson is just the latest example. In New York City, the NYPD has used its military equipment on young Americans peacefully protesting.
The purpose of these changes is to restore the balance between our institutions and the people. If we don’t begin enacting changes and restoring that balance we are on a path towards greater political turmoil and violence. In our short run as a nation we’ve achieved a level of peace and prosperity at home that hasn’t ever been equaled. It would be the greatest failure in all of human history to squander it now. The stakes are really that high.
Read original post: Ferguson Is a Reflection of the State of our Nation Blue Nation Review.
Watch: Money is Speech: A Musical History of Campaign Finance – YouTube.
Watch: Constitutional Amendment Needed To Fix Broken Campaign Finance System – YouTube.
The SEC is a dominating powerhouse…in football
An interesting article exposing how private equity firms that donate large sums to campaigns are less likely to face SEC prosecutions. From International Business Times:
Conducted by Maria Correira of the London Business School, the analysis examines more than 7,300 episodes of corporations issuing corrections of their financial statements between 1996 and 2006. Because such restatements are typically considered trigger events for SEC enforcement actions, Correira cross-referenced them with campaign contributions and lobbying expenditures from the firms.
If, as the saying goes, justice is blind, the data would show little correlation between firms’ political expenditures and their likelihood of being prosecuted. Instead, Correira found that “politically connected firms are on average less likely to be involved in an SEC enforcement action and face lower penalties if they are prosecuted by the SEC.” Specifically, Correira discovered that firms that increased their PAC contributions by $1 million over five years ended up halving their probability of being prosecuted.
Data from the Project on Government Oversight has documented that since 2001, more than 400 former SEC officials filed disclosure forms documenting their plans to represent firms before the SEC. Correira’s report shows that this revolving door also influences financial prosecutions, as companies that employ lobbyists who once worked for the SEC “experience a larger reduction in the probability of enforcement and in penalties than those that do not.”
Just can’t ignore how our system is dominated by big money and how the rest of us play by a different set of rules.
Read: Big Connection Between Campaign Contributions and Lack of SEC Prosecutions: Study.
Heat lifer and legend, Alonzo Mourning, was inducted into the Hall of Fame this weekend, capping a career which a gracious Zo recognized was improbable given what life has thrown at him.
Watch Zo’s acceptance speech (and his career highlights) if for some reason you need to be reminded why Mourning is revered in Miami and by everyone whose life he’s touched.
Congrats Zo, and thanks.
Read: Alonzo Mourning’s career retrospective and Hall of Fame speech VIDEO | ProBasketballTalk.
From the DUH! Department, a recent study found that states with high gun ownership and weak gun laws had higher gun-death rates.
Obviously, this blows just about every more-guns-make-us-safer argument out of the water, but in Amurika, freedom to own a gun without any safety restrictions whatsoever is waaaay more important than freedom to life.
Read: Higher Gun Death Rates In States With Weak Gun Laws And High Ownership: Report.
Read: States with Weak Gun Laws and Higher Gun Ownership Lead Nation in Gun Deaths (06/18/2014).