Bi-Partisanship–A Silly Notion

The US government has become weak and ineffective.

Part of the problem is what we like to called ‘bi-partisanship’.

The only purpose this term serves is an excuse by politicians who claim the ‘other side’ do not negotiate in good faith…..it is nothing but a pathetic excuse by political cowards.

This is a word that the MSM is in love with…..it gives them some vague idea that they can beat us with daily and continuously.

Personally I do not think the word has any meaning….other than a media talking point.

I have made thoughts known on this whimsical ideal…..https://lobotero.com/2009/02/17/bi-partisanship/ as you can see I have seldom thought that this was an idea that has any legs in our form of government…..in an ideal country this may work but not in ours.

The term “Center” is also an offshoot of the myth of bi-partisanship….as the political world of the country is today that center does not exist…..what small amount we find in government is usually not on some large scale program that benefits the entire nation but rather minute BS that serves NO purpose other than wasting time.

To illustrate this divide we need to look No further than the Obama years…..

What America considers a debate is pretty messed up. Apparently, the existence of climate change is a “debate.” Allowing 33,000 Americans to die every year because they can’t afford health care is a “debate.” Continuing to arm ISIS and Al Qaeda in Syria is a “debate.”

And yet, there’s one singular issue that seems to read “case closed” in the minds of millions of Americans, both red and blue: bipartisanship. Somehow, we have wound up in a world where saying “we should stop literally arming terrorists” is an opinion, but lauding the glories of bipartisan politics is unbiased and impartial.

View at Medium.com

The whole silly idea of bi-partisanship is a seriously flawed belief……

The flaw in simply blaming hyperpartisanship is pretending we have two parties with similar structures or aims: on one side is a diverse, center-left technocratic coalition that mediates the interests of groups and puts pragmatic, evidence-based governance ahead of ideology; on the other side is a group of politicians, donors, and activists singularly focused on maximizing their ideological victories. This is not merely progressive hogwash, but rather is frequently accepted by a range of political scientists and scholars.

This point is missed by most elite political commentators, who have the frustrating habit of treating politics in the abstract, as a sort of game to occupy the time of the wealthy. Politics is seen as victimless, the product of white papers, bare-knuckle negotiations, and talking points. The right’s views on abortion are treated like a fashion statement—without meaning and impact—rather than a consequential form of gender oppression.

The Myth of Bipartisanship—It’s Time to Get Tough With the Right

I reiterate…..the idea of bi-partisanship in our political circus is fanciful and a purely unattainable ideal in the American political system we have today.

Please stop pretending that it is a good idea….maybe in the past but today it is only a pipe dream of Centrists.

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The Idea Of Self-Determination

College of Political Knowledge

Self-determination denotes the legal right of people to decide their own destiny in the international order.  Self-determination is a core principle of international law, arising from customary international law, but also recognized as a general principle of law, and enshrined in a number of international treaties.  For instance, self-determination is protected in the United Nations Charter and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights as a right of “all peoples.” 

The scope and purpose of the principle of self-determination has evolved significantly in the 20th century.  In the early 1900’s, international support grew for the right of all people to self-determination.  This led to successful secessionist movements during and after WWI, WWII and laid the groundwork for decolonization in the 1960s. 

Contemporary notions of self-determination usually distinguish between “internal” and “external” self-determination, suggesting that “self-determination” exists on a spectrum.  Internal self-determination may refer to various political and social rights; by contrast, external self-determination refers to full legal independence/secession for the given ‘people’ from the larger politico-legal state.

Now that the much used term has been defined….let’s look at what the UN has to say on this front…..

Essentially, the right to self-determination is the right of a people to determine its own destiny. In particular, the principle allows a people to choose its own political status and to determine its own form of economic, cultural and social development. Exercise of this right can result in a variety of different outcomes ranging from political independence through to full integration within a state. The importance lies in the right of choice, so that the outcome of a people’s choice should not affect the existence of the right to make a choice. In practice, however, the possible outcome of an exercise of self-determination will often determine the attitude of governments towards the actual claim by a people or nation. Thus, while claims to cultural autonomy may be more readily recognized by states, claims to independence are more likely to be rejected by them. Nevertheless, the right to self-determination is recognized in international law as a right of process (not of outcome) belonging to peoples and not to states or governments.

The preferred outcome of an exercise of the right to self-determination varies greatly among the members of UNPO. For some of our members, the only acceptable outcome is full political independence. This is particularly true of occupied or colonized nations. For others, the goal is a degree of political, cultural and economic autonomy, sometimes in the form of a federal relationship. For others yet, the right to live on and manage a people’s traditional lands free of external interference and incursion is the essential aim of a struggle for self-determination. Other members, such as Taiwan and Somaliland, have already achieved a high-level or full self-determination, but are yet to be recognized as independent states by the international community.

https://unpo.org/article/4957

I thought is that if a people in a majority vote want to determine their own future than they should be given the right….but sadly in this world the power does no longer belong to the people but rather to money and those that control it.

An interested look at Self-determination from a post-graduate student…..https://www.e-ir.info/2014/04/17/what-is-self-determination-using-history-to-understand-international-relations/

Now that we have looked at ‘the right of self-determination’ I would appreciate your thoughts on this….

amicus populi

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OMG! It’s Anarchy!

College of Political Knowledge

The events of 06 January has brought about a liberal use of the term ‘anarchy’…..a misuse of the term.

Take a closer look at “Anarchy”……

This is another of those words that is used liberally by the media and no one knows what the Hell they are talking about….a word like socialism which as you know is used as some sort of insult for anyone that has Left leanings ideas.

The insult shows a large portion of ignorance…..they use the word wrongly….just like socialism.

But what is the theory behind ‘anarchism’…..

Anarchism has been defined many ways by many different sources. The word “anarchism” is taken from the word “anarchy” which is drawn from dual sources in the Greek language. It is made up of the Greek words αν (meaning: absence of [and pronounced “an”] and αρχη (meaning: authority or government [and pronounced “arkhe”]). Today, dictionary definitions still define anarchism as the absence of government. These modern dictionary definitions of anarchism are based on the writings and actions of anarchists of history and present. Anarchists understand, as do historians of anarchism and good dictionaries and encyclopedias, that the word anarchism represents a positive theory. Exterior sources, however, such as the media, will frequently misuse the word anarchism and, thus, breed misunderstanding.

Anarchism is a political theory, which is skeptical of the justification of authority and power, especially political power. Anarchism is usually grounded in moral claims about the importance of individual liberty. Anarchists also offer a positive theory of human flourishing, based upon an ideal of non-coercive consensus building. Anarchism has inspired practical efforts at establishing utopian communities, radical and revolutionary political agendas, and various forms of direct action. This entry primarily describes “philosophical anarchism”: it focuses on anarchism as a theoretical idea and not as a form of political activism. While philosophical anarchism describes a skeptical theory of political legitimation, anarchism is also a concept that has been employed in philosophical and literary theory to describe a sort of anti-foundationalism. Philosophical anarchism can mean either a theory of political life that is skeptical of attempts to justify state authority or a philosophical theory that is skeptical of the attempt to assert firm foundations for knowledge.

Nothing about the theory leads to the conclusion that it is all about violence and chaos.

The negative connotations are a construct of the media and the powers in control that are afraid of losing their stranglehold on power.

Anarchism is basically the ‘power of the people’.

Anytime that I hear the term anarchy or anarchist used to describe chaos and violence I know then that the person using the term is an ignorant dullard.

The use of the term negatively is nothing more than an insult and the buffoon’s attempt to lessen anything that challenges their authority.  It is used to incite fear and loathing.

I believe in the ‘power of the people’ concept but that cannot be achieved with the boot of power on their throats.

I was a member of the IWW and according to popular BS that makes me an anarchist….

So Be It!

I remain convinced that the power of the people is the only salvation this planet has.

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It’s Those Individual Rights

This is a debate in this country even from the very beginning and the silliness rages to this day.

These days the individual rights thing centers around the pandemic and the use of masks and even the vaccinations.

Let’s us take a look at what “individual rights” is all about….

Rights are essential for a society to function properly. They are normally set by laws and enforced by the government. There are many different rights and democracy is the political system that protects basic these rights the most. When basic individual rights, such as the right to vote, to work, to live and to have a family among other fundamental rights, are prohibited or limited by a government the country might not be living under democratic principles.

Imagine a world where you could not own property or even a weapon to protect yourself and your family. You couldn’t vote for the candidate of your choice in elections, couldn’t speak freely without being arrested, and couldn’t practice the religion you wanted. Imagine you could have your house searched by law enforcement at any time without a search warrant or be subjected to cruel and unusual punishment for committing a crime.

In such a world, you would have no individual rights. The United States was established based on democratic principles, and individual rights coincide with democracy. Democracy can be defined as everyone in society having formal equality of rights and privileges. The founding fathers put these ideals of democracy in the Constitution in the 1700s, and they continue to exist to this day.

Your individual rights guarantee individuals rights to certain freedoms without interference from the government or other individuals. These rights are derived from the Bill of Rights in our United States Constitution. The Bill of Rights consists of the first ten amendments of the Constitution. Within the first ten amendments, your individual rights are specified. They apply to everyone within United States borders.

Now the question is…..do individual rights trump (no pun intended) the public good?

These days your individual rights is not a given….only when it conforms to the present day paradigm.

The GOP embraces the thought of individual rights like the decision to NOT wear a mask….and yet the same people do not support a woman’s right to her body…so apparently those individual rights are only supported when it complies with the orthodoxy of the party…..has NOTHING to do with rights and everything to do with party philosophy.

Depends on who you talk with ….the definition changes with point of view.

For me either you support individual rights on all topics or you do not…..there is NO grey area.

Any thoughts?

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Those States Rights

College of Political Knowledge

Civics Series

I would like to take a closer look at the whole states rights thing and what it means to the country today.

  • States’ rights refer to the political rights and powers granted to the states of the United States by the U.S. Constitution.
  • Under the doctrine of states’ rights, the federal government is not allowed to interfere with the powers of the states reserved or implied to them by the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
  • In issues such as enslavement, civil rights, gun control, and marijuana legalization, conflicts between states’ rights and the powers of the federal government have been a part of civic debate for over two centuries.

The debate over states’ rights started with the writing of the Constitution and Bill of Rights. During the Constitutional Convention, the Federalists, led by John Adams, argued for a powerful federal government, while the Anti-federalists, led by Patrick Henry, opposed the Constitution unless it contained a set of amendments specifically listing and ensuring certain rights of the people and the states. Fearing that the states would fail to ratify the Constitution without it, the Federalists agreed to include the Bill of Rights.

In establishing American government’s power-sharing system of federalism, the Bill of Rights’ 10th Amendment holds that all rights and powers not specifically reserved to Congress by Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution or to be shared concurrently by the federal and state governments are reserved by either the states or by the people.

In order to prevent the states from claiming too much power, the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause (Article VI, Clause 2) holds that all laws enacted by the state governments must comply with the Constitution, and that whenever a law enacted by a state conflicts with a federal law, the federal law must be applied.

Here is a sticking point for me.

Federalism…..in the beginning of this country it was a brilliant idea that helped bring the country together as a single unit…..it was the only way to get all 13 colonies to sign on to a national government…..however today the concept is driving the political divisions that are running rampant….each state has become its own tiny ‘duchy’ within the bigger empire.

I gave my thoughts on federalism recently on my op-ed blog, Gulf South Free Press……https://gulfsouthfreepress.wordpress.com/2021/03/15/does-federalism-remain-a-good-idea/

The biggest obstacle to any substantial progress in our country is the bicameralism that we live under….I feel we would be better served today with a unicameral system of government…..again my thoughts on this topic……https://gulfsouthfreepress.wordpress.com/2021/03/08/thoughts-on-unicameralism/

Sorry about that but I got a bit off topic….my bad!

The biggest drag on our country is the whole concept of states rights which was outlined in the 10th amendment……for those ignorant on the US Constitution…..In American government, states’ rights are the rights and powers reserved by the state governments rather than the national government according to the U.S. Constitution.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

That is a very simplistic look and leaves open a whole array of opportunities for abuse…..like voter suppression, cultural BS, and labor oppression.

The authors of the Constitution were experts in the use of language, and in the construction of legal documents. Under any form of statutory construction, the use of the comma followed by the word “or” presents an alternative to the previous phrase. And the Constitution also clearly differentiates between the states and the people. The use of the word “people” in that last phase presents an alternative to the powers of the states – the power of the people, not of individual states.

The use of the word “people” in the Constitution, from the “We the People” of the Preamble on, means all the citizens of the United States separate from whatever identity they may have with individual states. There was a draft of the Preamble that used the words, “We the States,” but it was changed to emphasize the nature of he Constitution and its effects. The Constitution was intended by the founders to be a compact among the people of the United States, not between the federal government and the state governments, or among the state governments. The people are citizens of the United States, not of individual states.

(Dan Riker)

The Constitution provides for the states to maintain some rights and responsibilities, but none that can trump those of the federal government. The Constitution clearly states that it, and federal laws adopted under it, are the supreme law of the nation. The Constitution provides for no means of changing it except by amendment; no means of dissolution of the union; no right for any state to withdraw from the union; no right for any state to wage war against any other state; no right for any state to engage in foreign affairs; no right to determine, or grant, citizenship; no separate citizenship of states; no right to restrict the rights of citizens to vote.

10th Amendment means that the reserved power is shared between the states and the people. It does not create a body of absolute “states’ rights.” It means that states have the power to act where the federal government has not, and when such acts will not conflict with federal laws or responsibilities.

Destruction from within.

Then there is everybody’s hero Bubba Clinton as president he screwed things up royally with his lame ass vision of redefining Federalism….his program only added to the climate of division…..Clinton did nothing positive for the Party or the country…the only people that benefited from his presidency were his corporate masters….and his legacy is still screwing the country.

His new ideas on Federalism went something like this….

1–establish national goals and allowing states flexibility in choosing means to achieve..

2–waiving national guidelines to enable states to design approaches to problem solving rather than following national guidelines.

3–helping states learn from other’s successes

I would say the GOP has learned Clinton’s ideas all too well.

Right now there is only one way to change this slide into the past…..and that is through a change in the amendment and that would take a Constitutional convention and that will never happen in today’s political climate.

For now we will remain a plot of land with several duchy that have NO interests in a strong nation….only on petty issues that does not strengthen this nation in any way.

It will remain a country of individual good as opposed to the common good….on which this country was originally founded.

We are today betraying the original intent by the Founders and that betrayal is destroying this country from within.

I do not see this division ending in my lifetime…..a sad demise of the original intent.

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Thoughts On The Media

Disclaimer: This is my opinion on the presentation of what we call “the news”….and is not intended as a slight on any disaster or tragedy.

 

It is no secret that I am not a fan of the MSM….I believe that they are doing more damage than informing.

The mainstream media (MSM) no longer presents the news instead it is a source for propaganda.

Let me explain.

Americans think they have an unlimited variety of entertainment and media options right at their fingertips. But it is all a lie. This illusion of choice was fabricated by the media elites. In the early 90s before the mainstream adoption of the Internet, the media landscape used to be simple and straightforward. Today, 6 media giants control a whopping 90% of what we read, watch, or listen to.

Objectivity in journalism is an illusion created by the elite class to give the appearance of balanced news. However, there is no such thing as unbiased news. Journalists who work for these six corporations answer to their owners and ultimately serve their agendas. For example, no logical thinking person will expect Washington Post to write a fair and objective story about its owner, especially a story that Jeff Bezos reportedly cheated on his wife. The point of all these is that the media outlets don’t necessarily serve the interest of the people they control, instead, they serve the interests of their owners.

Now you have the ammo to find the truth in the MSM  (that is a trick there is very little truth in the MSM).

All of this was made possible by Bill Clinton and his Telecommunications Act of 1996.

For those that doubt my assertion…then read the Act for yourself…..(that will not happen but it is there for those that care)….

Click to access tcom1996.pdf

Yes I know it is a long read…..and most will not attempt this but if you want to know what is what then step away from the game and learn something!

In my years to studying political philosophy I have looked at what is termed as “media hegemony”…..

Media hegemony is a perceived process by which certain values and ways of thought promulgated through the mass media become dominant in society. It is seen in particular as reinforcing the capitalist system. Media hegemony has been presented as influencing the way in which reporters in the media – themselves subject to prevailing values and norms – select news stories and put them across. (wikipedia)

Now that it is defined…..think about today…..the Covid coverage.

Do not get me wrong I know that this virus has devastated the nation and the world….we need to know the facts as they become available but on the same hand we do not need every horror story there is which is what the media is doing.

Yes people dying from the problems created by the illness and by the lack of response for a year is not acceptable….but again I do not need to know what happened in Rhode Island or NYC or Kansas….I do need the facts as they come out.

Then there are these endless worthless wars of intervention…..that just keep being fueled by the M-IC to protect their massive profits….and then there is the lack of actual information being reported by the MSM.

The truth is the national security apparatus does not want the people to know the facts about these wars.

An especially dangerous threat to liberty occurs when members of the press collude with government agencies instead of monitoring and exposing the abuses of those agencies. Unfortunately, collusion is an all-too-common pattern in press coverage of the national security state’s activities. The American people then receive official propaganda disguised as honest reporting and analysis.

The degree of collaboration frequently has reached stunning levels. During the early decades of the Cold War, some journalists even became outright CIA assets. Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein’s January 1977, 25,000-word article in Rolling Stone was an extraordinarily detailed account of cooperation between the CIA and members of the press, and it provided key insights into that relationship. In some cases, the “journalists” were actually full-time CIA employees masquerading as members of the Fourth Estate, but Bernstein also confirmed that some 400 bona fide American journalists had secretly carried out assignments for the ClA during the previous 25 years. He noted that “journalists provided a full range of clandestine services – from simple intelligence gathering to serving as go-betweens with spies in Communist countries. Reporters shared their notebooks with the CIA. Editors shared their staffs.”

How the National Security State Manipulates the News Media

More on the lousy track record of the MSM in our endless wars…..

The US War Machine Doesn’t Want Us to Take War Personally

The powers that be learned their lesson from Vietnam……where journalists had access to the conflict and were allowed to report what they observed….that all changed and now we only get information that the Pentagon wants us to have and it is NEVER what is actually happening.

The news is no longer the news….it is hour after hour of editorializing….take the Chauvin trial as an example…..the “media” every minute of the thing….granted it is important but every minute holds no news and just a report as it was before Clinton would help better inform the public.

The corporate owned media serves NO purpose other than selling the policies that the owners find necessary.

The problems this country is dealing with today can be laid at the feet of corporations and their propaganda arm….the Mainstream Media……

The answer is to look at all ‘news’ with skepticism and do the work to find the “rest of the story”.

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Armed Camps

These days with all the ease to obtain guns even assault weapons the US is becoming an armed camp….it is becoming ‘us against them’ once again.

While the debate over gun rights rages….the population is quietly arming themselves…..not sure why other than some delusional bullsh*t.

For years now the militias like the Oath Keepers and so many more have been gaining members and arming themselves for the coming fight with the government.

If you are not sure just what these militia groups want or stand for then maybe this will help a bit….https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_militia_movement

I remember back in the 60s when the Black Panthers were photographic with guns the press and country lost their minds.

Mapping the Black Panther Party - Mapping American Social Movements

There was a concern that there would soon be a ‘race war’ in the US and of course the whites started arming themselves in case there needed to be a response to the coming race war….a war that NEVER materialized…it was all hype fed by the media and the NRA…..it help sell a bunch of guns.

And now whenever there is some sort of domestic chaos…..whether warranted or not……the sell of guns goes sky high because of some unfounded fear….helped by the media and politicians with their hands in the pockets of the NRA and the gun industry.

These militias formed as a block for any attempt of a ‘takeover’ of the government from ‘them’……that depends on the minority that is in disfavor with the idiots.

Cheering on Armed Militia Groups, Trump Dangerously Turns to Dictators'  Playbook

These overweight in-bred morons are filmed constantly with the body armor and the AR-15s (a substitute for their penis) attempting to intimidate people in doing what they desire….

These groups became more and more visible with the rise of those pee brains in the Tea Party.

That explains one armed camp.

On the other side of this issue is the NFAC……a coalition of black/brown militia group…..

The Birth of the NFAC; America's Black Militia | Chicago Defender

I have introduced the readers of In Saner Thought to the NFAC in more detail…….https://lobotero.com/2020/11/03/nfac/

These people joined up with the ever rising tide of excessive deadly force being used against black and brown Americans this group has stepped in as some sort of equalizer….

That is the second armed camp….

This camp will possibly grow bigger and bigger because of the interests that blacks are showing and the interest in owning guns….like their white counter parts…..

Black people are buying guns at a high record rate, partially due to fear and anxiety, according to The Guardian.

Black people owning guns have gone up 58.2 percent, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) — and gun groups like the “Not F**king Around Coalition (NFAC)” consist of armed social justice advocates who demand justice for George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, visibly strapped with handguns. 

The Guardian also noted that gun-ownership amongst Black people spiked both when President Trump lost his reelection campaign and when Ahmaud Arbery, a Black jogger who died after he was inspecting an empty house, was gunned down.

https://thehill.com/changing-america/respect/diversity-inclusion/546454-gun-ownership-among-black-americans-is-soaring

A third and little known group is that of the SRA……a group founded to be a counter to the power and influence of the NRA……I have introduced my readers of IST to this group as well……https://lobotero.com/2020/05/10/who-will-confront-the-protesters/ …..they are not as visible as the first two…..but that could change at anytime.

I have expressed my concern about the runaway guns in this country…..and now we are dividing ourselves even further into armed camps.

Let us not forget the non-joiners or the ‘independent’ gun owners…..most are reasonable and would like to see changes in the gun availability and most have not chosen sides in this divide…..but that could change any day.

After the breach of 06 January Americans are realizing that these are dangerous times…..and sadly there is no end in sight.

Dark days are a head of us.

Can we survive as a nation?

It is true that Americans are resilient…..but can we stop this spiral?

Thoughts?

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“lego ergo scribo”

Here A Protest There A Protest

These days the whole world is in protest for one thing or another.

Protests in the US for various reasons…..racism, violence, etc…..Myanmar is in protest…the same with India, Brazil, Hong Kong, Thailand…..so forth and so on…..people are rising up and taking to the streets….

Why is the world burning with protests?

Before we answer that question there is another…..

Just what are all these protest accomplishing?

But before we answer that probing question….let us look at historic protests from the not so distant past….

As protests have continued nationwide, more than a dozen other U.S. cities, including Los Angeles, Dallas, and Washington, D.C., have also made commitments to reduce police resources and funding, and make changes to their systems.

Throughout American history, peaceful protesting — which is protected under the First Amendment and is an act of patriotism — has been utilized to advocate for and lead to change. While the overall impacts of the current national protests are still unfolding, they will likely be influential, just like these movements:

https://www.ucf.edu/news/7-influential-protests-in-american-history/

There have been street protest throughout the world…here are some of the more notable protest and their results…..a baker’s dozen of protests……..

To bring perspective to the debate, we’ve looked through the past 200 years of peaceful protests, from tragic to triumphant to just plain weird.

https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/29040/13-peaceful-protests-and-whether-they-worked

As you see some were successful while others did little good at all….

Let’s look at protests from say the last 50 years…..were they successful or just a waste of time to provide the media with fodder for their reporting?

Vanessa Williamson of the Brookings Institution and political scientists Kris-Stella Trump and Katherine Levine Einstein shows that the number of Black Lives Matter protests  in response to police killings of black civilians has grown from only a few in a handful of cities in 2013 to over 500 protests in nearly 200 cities in 2014.

But what effect do these protests have?

Political science, it turns out, actually has a lot to say about protests, even though it’s really hard to pinpoint what makes one protest effective and another not. Broadly speaking, though, there are four main ways the literature tries to evaluate a protest:

  1. Did it raise awareness?
  2. Did public opinion change?
  3. Were there institutional changes as a result?
  4. Were there electoral consequences, either intended or unintended?

First, protests, at their most basic level, raise awareness about issues that might not yet be in the mainstream. This might not sound all that important, but research by political scientist Deva Woodly of The New School shows that protest movements can fundamentally alter the way we talk — and think — about a specific issue.

(read more)

What Protests Can (And Can’t) Do

The basic question to ask is…..do these protests truly work?

I say it raising social awareness but change the direction it does little.

For instance we are still protesting the extreme use of force by the police and after a decade of protests little has changed….black people are still being legally murdered in the name of the law.

Throughout history, coal miners have been unlikely champions of protest movements. As global economies began shifting away from coal, miners suffered from downsizing, colliery closures, and loss of benefits. In the US and UK, miners used protests to bring their struggles to the public – and won. In 2016, coal workers of the China’s Longmay coal firm prompted the government to admit financial struggles and demand back payment of thousands of workers.  Additionally, the 2011 Occupy Wall Street movement was similarly effective in giving America’s lower income bracket a voice, shedding light on the growing chasm between the top 1% of American earners and the rest of the nation. More recently, the nationwide protests across America in response to the murder of George Floyd at the hands of a police officer have brought police brutality and racism into the spotlight, forcing Americans to address the ongoing disparate treatment of African Americans, especially by law enforcement, which has been unchecked for decades.

Protests aren’t as effective as demonstrators like to think. Thousands of protests are constantly taking place around the world. While the George Floyd protests across America and the world may have changed how Americans view each other and how the world views America, most protest efforts pass without remark, revealing the miniscule impact of protests in general.  Though the mob of pro-Trump protestors that stormed the US Capitol building in an attempt to overturn the Nov. 3 presidential election results drew the world’s attention (and condemnation), it did not succeed in meeting its aims; the constitutional ceremony to certify the election results was interrupted, but Joe Biden’s presidential victory has been confirmed.

Princeton study found that public opinion hardly comes to bear on legislation, and the results of most protests confirms this. The anti-war movement against US military involvement in Vietnam that was popularized on college campuses in 1965 had no effect on war activities, which were in fact ramped up until the war’s end in 1973. Protests in the US and the UK against the Iraq war did nothing to curb the invasion. The Women’s Day March of 2016 was even confronted by results that ran counter to their goal of ensuring reproductive rights for women worldwide. For instance, just two days after the protest, President Trump signed an executive order stripping US aid from foreign institutions that offer abortion services, and further rollbacks on reproductive rights in the foreign and domestic arena continue.

(Read More)

Do Protests work ?

Do these protests work?

I say look at the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act as examples.

If they truly worked then why are African-Americans no better off than they were in the 60’s……same for the voting rights….if they worked why are we fighting that battle yet again?

Protests rise awareness….but what has that awareness accomplished.

I have given my thoughts in the past……https://gulfsouthfreepress.wordpress.com/2020/06/04/why-not-try-non-violence/

While I agree that substantial change needs to happen….I just do not think that protests are the best way to make that change.

History show us that any change can be quickly and decisively taken away if the eye is off the ball….and that is what has happened to the voting rights in this country.

I depart with a quote from Emma …….“People have only as much liberty as they have the intelligence to want and the courage to take.”
Emma Goldman

I Read, I Write, You Know

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

“Opiate Of The Masses”

Marx called religion ‘the opiate of the masses.

I call credit as the ‘opiate of the masses’……https://lobotero.com/2016/12/03/the-opiate-of-the-masses/

But now I have had a change of heart…..

I now believe that social media is the ‘opiate of the masses’….

Let me say on the onset that I use Twitter basically for a news feed….I do not use any other form of social media.

This has the potential to educate and inform….but rather it is used to influence and misinform.

The American people along with the rest of the world have been lulled into laziness….social media is full of useless information…like photos of the food they eat (food porn)…..to pass on the wildest conspiracies that can be disproved with a little effort….but sadly the effort is not there….laziness!

I am not alone…..Pew found that 64% of the responders think social media is bad….

About two-thirds of Americans (64%) say social media have a mostly negative effect on the way things are going in the country today, according to a Pew Research Center survey of U.S. adults conducted July 13-19, 2020. Just one-in-ten Americans say social media sites have a mostly positive effect on the way things are going, and one-quarter say these platforms have a neither positive nor negative effect.

Those who have a negative view of the impact of social media mention, in particular, misinformation and the hate and harassment they see on social media. They also have concerns about users believing everything they see or read – or not being sure about what to believe. Additionally, they bemoan social media’s role in fomenting partisanship and polarization, the creation of echo chambers, and the perception that these platforms oppose President Donald Trump and conservatives.

Democracy is being hijacked by social media…..

Perceived as an equalizing force for disenfranchised individuals without a voice, the importance of social networks as agents of change cannot be ignored. However, in some societies, social networks have evolved into a platform for fake news and propaganda, empowering disruptive voices, ideologies, and messages. Social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, and Google hold the potential to alter civic engagement, thus essentially hijacking democracy, by influencing individuals toward a particular way of thinking.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7343248/

People only go where their biased beliefs can be strengthen.

Social media is the bane of civilization….it allows the most manure to be spread liberally to the uninformed….it is employed to feed bias and hatred with the most outrageous lies and misinformation.

I question the intelligence of those that lick up these lies.

Nothing has changed in the past and I do not think the future looks very bright….I continue to feel that social media is the new “opiate of the masses”.

“They keep you doped with social and TV

Until you are so f*cking crazy that you cannot see”

(paraphrase of John Lennon’s ‘Working Class Hero”)

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

To Revere The Constitution

There are a lot of BS spread by politicians about our Constitution….and now I have seen an article that gives five reason it should be revered…..I will add my thought after each reason….

The Constitution is an amazing document…..but I think that since it is full of 18th century thinking that no longer applies in the 21st then it is time to bring the document into the present…..

This article written by Michael Warren for realclearpublicaffairs.com and his five reason for this revere thinking are:  My thoughts will be in parentheses…..

1). A Written Constitution. Nearly all scholars agree that the Constitution was the first written document that established a major nation’s government. For thousands of years, mankind had been ruled by some combination of fear, force, custom, and tradition. Having a written document that laid out the powers of government and the duties of the representatives of “We the People” was a huge leap forward, both for the rule of law – that is, the idea that the law governs rather than the personal desires of those in power – and the argument that mankind has the capacity to participate in self-government.

(No where did us mere peasants ever participate beyond the vote…it has never been a self-government)

2). Approved by the People. Until 1788, as far as we know, no major country in the course of human history put its form of government up to a vote of the people. The people in each state voted to send delegates to the Constitutional Convention of 1787, where a new governing document was created through robust debate. Unless the ratifying convention of any respective state approved the Constitution, it would not be adopted, another amazing advancement. We literally created a new social compact for the country that was agreed to by the people of each state.

(Was it?)

3). Separation of Powers. Although England and ancient Rome had some pretense of separation of powers, it was muddled and often subverted. Until the Constitution, no major central government in world history firmly divided the three major functions of government into co-equal, separate branches. By dividing power between the legislative (Congress), executive (President), and judicial (Supreme Court) branches, the Constitution protects liberty by making it difficult for one person or group from taking complete control of the federal government.

(Those days are long gone….the Senate works as an independent from parts of the government…and with the Trump president the separation no longer existed)

4). Checks and Balances. Hand in glove with separation of powers, by giving each branch the ability to check the other branches, the Constitution better protects liberty. It requires that the three branches act together to enact policy and ensure that it does not violate the Constitution’s text. For example, the president can veto legislation passed by Congress, but Congress can override that veto with a two-thirds vote. The president is the commander in chief of the military, but only Congress can fund it and declare war. Even if Congress passes legislation and the president signs it into law, if it violates the Constitution, the Supreme Court must set that law aside. The president nominates judges, but the Senate must approve nominees. Again, liberty is protected by limiting the power of any particular branch of government.

(And yet the Senate can stop any and all social reform that the majority disagrees with…even if it is wildly popular with the peasantry.)

5). Enumerated Powers. Most governments in human history presume that the government is all powerful, and then carves out certain restrictions where it cannot act. The Constitution does exactly the opposite. Unless the Constitution specifically enumerates – that is, lists – powers where the federal government has the authority to act, it cannot do so. By substantially limiting the reach of federal power, the doctrine of enumerated powers safeguards the people’s liberties.

(And then Trump was elected and all this ‘protection’ went down the toilet)

***Reminder—my thoughts are in parentheses***

If you would like to read the full article…..https://www.realclearpublicaffairs.com/articles/2021/03/16/top_five_reasons_why_the_constitution_should_be_revered_663616.html

Again I do not want to scrap our Constitution.

I just believe that it could use a massive update to make in represent the present situation.

And there is the problem…..it will take a Constitutional Convention….and that would open up a whole new can of worms…..in case you slept through your civics class….

A convention to propose amendments to the United States Constitution, also called an Article V Convention or amendatory convention, called for by two-thirds (currently 34) of the state legislatures, is one of two processes authorized by Article Five of the United States Constitution whereby the United States Constitution may be altered. Amendments may also be proposed by Congress with a two-thirds vote in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

To become part of the Constitution, an amendment which has been formally proposed must then be ratified by either—as determined by Congress—the legislatures of three-fourths (presently 38) of the states, or state ratifying conventions in three-fourths of the states. Thirty-three amendments to the United States Constitution have been approved by Congress and sent to the states for ratification. Twenty-seven of these amendments have been ratified and are now part of the Constitution. As of 2021, the amendment convention process has never been used for proposing a constitutional amendment.

(wikipedia)

The biggest problem is our system…..a system where there are many deliberative bodies that have to agree……the rub for the convention debate. Liberals are concerned that the conservatives could amend the Constitution to beat back the role of government. Conservatives aren’t sure they could keep liberal amendments off the table. No one knows just how a convention would work, how long it would last, what rules would guide debate and amendments, or what unexpected pieces might emerge.

Just how much of a cluster f*ck is this process?

Take the Equal Rights Amendment of 1972.

“Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.”

And as of 2021 it has NOT be ratified….after almost 50 years and we still do not have the ratification…even after extensions to the deadline for ratification.

One common argument against the Equal Rights Amendment is the fact that the U.S. already has the 14th Amendment, which states:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

A major argument against the ERA is that the ratification of the ERA would mean laws cannot be passed to protect men and women differently. The ERA states, “equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex,” implying all laws must affect men and women equally. That standard is present in legislation surrounding racial discrimination. An example is present in Adkins v. Children’s Hospital from 1923. In this case, the Supreme Court ruled that it was unconstitutional to guarantee women a minimum wage because earlier, the court had ruled that men could not be guaranteed a minimum wage. The court based its decision on the 19th Amendment.

Just an example of the BS that flies around any attempt to ratify an amendment or to change the Constitution in any way.

Revere? 

I think it is an amazing document…..amazing but does not mean that it is representative of the nation of today.

I now step off my soapbox…..and allow others to state their thoughts.

You may type now.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”