Some news stories keep me awake nights because I understand them; others because I don’t


(May my readers in other countries pardon my use of the word "we." It just seemed too weird to write "the United States" over and over.)

Is it by accident that we are fighting “for freedom” (ours and theirs, presumably) in the oil-rich Middle East while ignoring slavery, starvation, and genocide in the jungles and deserts of Africa? What if those people had oil—or were even white? I mean, we did finally get it together to intervene in Bosnia, yet only thousands died there as opposed to over a million in Rwanda.

Why did conservatives continue to defend the War in Iraq after it became clear that George Bush invaded the wrong country on spurious grounds, yet they are now outraged by Obama’s efforts to insure that everyone has medical care? I could better understand their outrage over the one if they were also outraged over the other. As it is, what is the message here, that killing people by mistake is okay, but saving lives isn’t? Or that anything a conservative president does is acceptable, whereas everything a liberal president tries to do must be defeated?

Conservatives demand to know how Obama plans to pay for health care reform. It is a good question, but why have they never asked this about our two wars in the Middle East, wars that have been going on for seven years at a cost of $915.1 billion?

Residents of conservative states are the poorest and least educated people in America, and they are also the least able to afford medical insurance. Yet they are the very states in which opposition to healthcare reform is strongest. Why is this, do you think?

Pfizer was recently ordered to pay $2.3 billion in fines and penalties for fraudulent advertising. It was Pfizer’s fourth conviction in seven years, yet no one will go to prison, and the fine only represents three weeks of corporate profits. Every major pharmaceutical company has run into similar problems, but since the profits exceed the fines, they keep at it.

Ronald McDonald runs charitable residence houses near hospitals for the families of seriously ill children, yet Ronald doesn’t insure his own rank and file workers—or their children. This enables him to look like a philanthropist even while dumping sick children on the taxpayer’s doorstep.

The Supreme Court is expected to abolish corporate spending limits for political ads before the end of the year. Imagine how it would affect the current healthcare debate if those in favor of reform had to compete with the likes of Merck and WellPoint for attention. Through their lobbyists and political contributions, such firms already exert an undue influence on legislators. When the day comes that they persuade legislators to outlaw free speech on the Internet (to protect us from terrorists, no doubt) their control of information will be complete.

Another fairly recent Supreme Court decision that dispossessed the individual in favor of the corporation was allowing local municipalities to take away the homes and businesses of individuals and give them to corporations. A third was ruling that corporations have the same free speech rights as individual citizens.

The irony of such decisions is that the raison d'être of the Supreme Court is to interpret the Constitution, a document that was supposedly created to protect the rights of the individual.

Yet another example of our government working overtime to screw the individual is that lawmakers denied Medicare and Medicaid the right to negotiate drug costs as do private insurers. Drug companies were said to be exceedingly grateful.

Such things go almost un-noticed by the press, as if to imply that they’re not relevant to our lives. So, Michael Jackson’s death is relevant?

The problem is that the press provides us with the information we want rather than the information we need. For example, thousands of people—including 191 Americans—have been killed in Afghanistan since January, yet Michael Jackson’s death in June has gotten more press coverage this year than that entire country. Given our apathy toward the things that matter to our welfare, the question becomes one of what we, as a country, deserve.

When a person joins the military, it would be well to tell him or her that, oh, by the way, if you should die for your country, your country won’t even notice, and absolutely nothing good will come from your sacrifice. In fact, the war in which you die will probably just fizzle out eventually, and, like the war in Vietnam, be judged by historians as a waste of time and resources.

No one doubts the mass corruption of the governments in Iraq and Afghanistan, so the only reason for protecting them is that they’re on our side whereas their enemies are not on our side. It was the same with the Shah in Iran, Batista in Cuba, and the Contras in Nicaragua. I don’t remember a time when my government didn’t support evil regimes—even when those regimes overthrew elected governments—as long as we thought they wouldn’t turn on us.

Did you know that private charities hold fundraisers to pay for plastic surgery on disfigured veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan? If the government doesn’t care about the “heroes” who were supposedly injured while “fighting for our freedom,” why should we think it cares about us?

Conservatives say that we should support the troops even if we despise the war. The problem is that troops make wars possible. If those who will join the military today took the trouble to become informed beforehand, they probably wouldn’t join. The most that can be said for them is that they’re awfully young, terribly naïve, and woefully ignorant.

The thing that I find most distressing about my country is its smugness. Even though we are the most obese, the least fit, and one of the most debt ridden nations on earth, and even though our scores continue to drop in regard to education, longevity, vacation time, infant mortality, and other lifestyle standards; we still congratulate ourselves on being “the greatest nation on earth.” Greatest how? That’s what I would like to know.

38 comments:

pink dogwood said...

Snowbrush - I agree with you 100% - I feel the same way about the unnecessary wars and the health care - However, we might not be the greatest nation on earth - but we are a pretty good place to live? Isn't there enough good around us to balance out the bad? I don't know of any perfect place to live on this earth - each place comes with its own unique set of problems - no?

CreekHiker said...

As someone who considers herself conservative...I was sort of dreading where you were going with this. But I agree on everything point for point.

"The most that can be said for them is that they’re awfully young, terribly naïve, and woefully ignorant."

I will say that the scholarship provided by the military are very alluring especially in a poorer state where college is an impossibility.

Very thoughtful post Snow and nice to read something from a liberal who doesn't feel the need to put down conservatives and resort to name-calling...

Snowbrush said...

pink dogwood: "I don't know of any perfect place to live on this earth - each place comes with its own unique set of problems - no?"

I can't speak much about other countries. We are among the wealthy ones, and no doubt take for granted a lot of things that most people don't have. And my particular situation is better than most people even in the U.S. Yet, I see trends developing that scare me, largely because of what I wrote about corporations gaining power at the expense of individuals.

CreekHiker: "I was sort of dreading where you were going with this. But I agree on everything point for point."

Why thank you. I only started it yesterday, and it's unusual for me to post so quickly after I start writing, so I worried about how rational and understandable it would be.

Yes, I understand that many people join the military for the benefits. I can but hope they go into the Navy or the Coast Guard, some branch of service that provides little support to our current wars.

I am not a liberal. I wish I did fit neatly into one party's agenda so I could feel that I belonged somewhere, but I don't fit. I think the truth is spread around. For example, I'm with the liberals on health care (as long as illegal aliens are not part of the package), but with the conservatives on gun rights. I'll tell you what I think though. I don't actually think we have a conservative party any longer. The Republican Party has morphed into a purely destructive monster in my opinion. Their sole agenda is to tear down what someone else is trying to build. Traditionally, they were for limited government, but that pretty well went out with Bush, don't you think?

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

I agree with this so much I could have written it myself. It would have been upsetting to do so, however. My heart rate would have gone up considerably and I even might have become more irate than I was when that moron from South Carolina heckled the President last night. So am glad you wrote it instead of me. I can only say, amen.

CreekHiker said...

Well Snow, that explains it. I don't think I fit anywhere either. I was all for Afghanistan; dead set against Iraq. I so believe in the right to bear arms and get pissed that you can be arrested for simply carrying a weapon here in LA LA land. How can you protect yourself if the gun isn't with you? I hate how much I have to pay for health care... I still have it but with my employment situation, that bill would pay for 1/4 of my mortgage! And I don't use it because my deductible is too high! So, yes, something needs to be done.

As for political parties.... I thought the dems made asses of themselves when Bush was in the Oval. Now, it's the Republican's turn. My deepest wish is that they would stop this pissing contest and actually figure out how to help the people that put them there.

What other freaking job can you be so well paid for doing next to nothing and have a full pension simply for holding the office? Makes me sick!

Gaston Studio said...

We, as a country, are certainly not perfect but we do offer more freedom and opportunities than any other country at this point in time and I think it's because we're an established democracy that this is available to all who live here, whether born or immigrated.

Personally, I do not think we are at war with the wrong countries. But I do think the beginning of the war was mishandled and misjudged as to how long it would take to turn the country around. And yes, oil is an important part of the war in Iraq but it's certainly not the only reason we're there and should remain there until the Iraqis can manage on their own. I voted for Bush and I would do so again, however, I think he should have been up front and honest about the length of time it would take to accomplish America's goal in that country. Who knows if he was given the wrong advice and/or was naive about this, but I also think the American public should educate themselves more and not believe everything they hear on tv or read in the papers. There was no way I was going to believe it would be of short duration or that we wouldn't need more troops or more money to provide for them well enough to get their job done.

Yes, our original Constitution is based on rights, but I personally think every American should consider whether they want every letter of the Constitution upheld, or whether they want to live in a safer country. England has had cameras on every street corner for years and this accomplishes several things: first, it makes a criminal think twice about committing a crime; second, it affords the police with evidence of a crime; which, third, allows for less cases to be thrown out of court due to lack of or inconclusive evidence. Our gun laws are barbaric; who needs an AK47 to protect their home or hunt for food?

I back our President in the health care reform simply because he's come up with the best idea to date, while at the same time, protecting programs like Medicare and Social Security. Personally, I think the reason these poor states don't want healthcare reform is because they expect their taxes to be raised and they should be.
If we want a different program in our country, we should be expected to pay for part of it. But I also expect major changes in the health industry to happen so that those companies like Pfizer will also be paying for reform.

The bottom line with my verbose comment is that American's in general have allowed the media to think for them. Why are these people not taking the time to research and think for themselves?

Sorry to take up so much of your comment space, Snow. As usual, your posts makes us all think... thank God!

Snowbrush said...

Pamela Terry and Edward: "that moron from South Carolina heckled the President"

He certainly set a bad precedent. From what I can gather, it's the first time such a thing ever happened. Pelosi's face sure lit up during the incident!

Gaston Studio: "I personally think every American should consider whether they want every letter of the Constitution upheld, or whether they want to live in a safer country."

But, Jane, which letters do you suggest we throw out? Since Bush, the Feds can already ease drop on your conversations and emails without a warrant; they can already search your house without a warrant; and they can even peruse the list of books you're read at your local library without a warrant; all in violation of the 4th Amendment. I take this as an example of how little our founding documents actually mean to the government. As Howard Zinn wrote: "In the never-ending contest between authority and liberty that goes on in every society, the agencies of government, at their best, are still on the side of authority."

What you seem to be saying, if I understand you correctly, is that you are willing to acquiesce to the escalating loss of your liberties if doing so will buy you a margin of physical safety. But what of moral safety, by which I mean the courage to standby those principles that we as a nation claim to hold most dear? You're probably familiar with the Ben Franklin quotation that goes: "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." If we allow our enemies to frighten us so badly that we demolish our own Bill of Rights, we will have harmed ourselves more than they could have ever hoped to have done.

CreekHiker: "What other freaking job can you be so well paid for doing next to nothing and have a full pension simply for holding the office? Makes me sick!"

Our representatives are ever kinder to themselves than they are to us. I noted during the last presidential election that all of the major candidates already held elected positions, yet they somehow found time to campaign for president, an effort that took them far from Washington, and that, by itself, was more than a full-time job. Could anyone BUT an elected official, abandon his or her post for a year or two to run for president, yet still keep that post along with all its benefits?

rhymeswithplague said...

Your Editor At Work: eavesdrop

Snowbrush said...

Rhymes: "Your Editor At Work: eavesdrop."

Rhymes, come to Papa for a kiss. I just positively LOVE it when you point out such errors to me. I often see things on other people's blog that I think they SHOULD be made aware of, but I worry about causing offense. DON'T NOBOBY NEVER WORRY ABUT CUASING NO OFFENSE by pointing out errors in spelling are grammar on this blog. DO worry abut getting a sloppy kiss from yours trully in gratidude. I hope you get that, although I'm saying this is a kidding way--about welcoming such information--I really do mean it.

Marion said...

I must admit, I've never lost any sleep over politics, although it would be nice to have some kind of affordable health care.

I find it amusing that so many folks hate it when the current president is disrespected, yet our former president was sliced and diced hourly...but then he wasn't Hollywood's and the media's darling either. This is America and we should be able to criticize anyone. But I have to agree that we should have good manners while in public and not call people names. Did I just contradict myself? LMAO! Gotta love it. Blessings, Snow-Man! Thought-provoking post.

Snowbrush said...

Marion, Peggy is like you, perhaps. She views politics as if it were a disreputable hobby. I try to tell her that the political arena actually MATTERS to her life, but she says the government is going to do whatever it wants to do, and nothing she can do will change that. I think this amounts to dumping her responsibility onto other people. In all fairness, I must admit that I'm not terribly active myself. I saw people going door to door for Obama a full year or more before the election. I admired them for it, but then I admire a lot of people for doing things that I'm not about to do.

Marion: "I find it amusing that so many folks hate it when the current president is disrespected, yet our former president was sliced and diced hourly..."

Yes, as was the one before him, but for a Congressman to heckle him as he's speaking before the House and the Senate is another matter entirely and constitutes a NEW low in this 233 year old country. Wilson did apologize to Obama, but he has refused to apologize before the House in that body's chamber. This won't do at all, as it's not just Obama whom he slighted in a way that, if it goes unpunished, can only lead to a further degradation of political discourse. To say, as many do, that rudeness has always existed, and we should just get used to it, is not helpful. Even standards that are often violated deserve to be defended if they are worthy standards.

julie mitchell said...

Snow, a fabulous post...really, I'm jumping up and down here there is sooo much to comment on..right now only time for this...When we consider what liberties are being taken from us the repeal of the Posse Comitatus Act should be part of the conversation. It lays out the rules for which our military can be used against Americans on American soil. Some may say we need to be able to protect ourselves from home grown terrorists..and I agree...but the definition of 'terrorist' might mean something different to each of us depending on our point of view and who is running our government. Returning military are receiving training on how to 'control' demonstrating Americans and then there is Blackwater our privatized army.
Thanks for sharing..
hug, hug

Snowbrush said...

Julie, I hope you do make it back as I would love to hear more of your thoughts.

" the definition of 'terrorist' might mean something different to each of us"

Well, it's what the government calls it that's of primary importance, and the government can now send you to prison for terrorism if all you did was spray paint the acronym ALF on the outside of a vivisection lab. Clearly, the goal has moved beyond stopping terrorism and toward silencing dissent by giving decades long sentences for behavior that would have formerly constituted a misdemeanor. People are becoming afraid to protest at all.

"Blackwater our privatized army."

I see it the use of mercenaries as simply a way to carry on an unpopular war with minimal bad press.

Renee said...

clap clap clap.

You completly nailed this one.

Love Renee xoxo

Just_because_today said...

What a truthful post. I agree with you on every issue you wrote. I work with the military and in addition to the caracteristics you mention of the ones who join the service is that some of them are terribly poor and see the service as employment.
Great post.

lakeviewer said...

I'm saying Amen after each statement. You're on a roll, and I'm right behind you.

Snowbrush said...

Renee, Just_because_today, and lakeviewer, your praise warms my heart, thank you. I usually write what I feel and then re-read it many times for clarity and completeness over several days, if not a week or two. I posted this the day after I wrote it. Sometimes, when I have considerable emotional charge behind something, it makes it harder for me to hold onto it, but posting it sooner rather than later has the downside of making it difficult for me to judge how it will appear to others.

Diana said...

Oh Snow, This was a good post. You do so much thinking! Unfortunately I don't think that my brain can take all of it in at one time! I guess I'm just slow but it did make me have to think a bit so Thank You for that!
I wanted to let you know that I bit the bullet so to speak (See my post)and got the shot in the knee. If the ins. o.k.'s it I will get the synvisc. And the good news is that it didn't hurt. I wanted to thank you for your past words of encouragement!
Love Di

KC said...

Snow, Thanks for this one. I agree plus learned some things as well. KC

Bea Elliott said...

Hi there! Ah - now your blog and this last post I clearly understand your comments about Steve Best and his ideology. There's an awful lot of things to be worried about. Unfortunately our current system makes it all so easy to avoid... as with the endless reporting on MJ's death while American lives are forsaken without hardly a wimper. As a culture, indeed we are in serious trouble. :(

kylie said...

hi snow
i have been lurking a little while and i like your stuff. i dont have anything really to say about this post. i'm not informed enough.

i am amazed at you sitting on a post for days. i have to hit publish.i sometimes make small adjustments later but essentially i write just as i think, if i wait for a bit it seems to lose all relevance

cheers
k

geek said...

i. I don't know if I have the right to comment on this since I am not from the United States -- and I can't have a first-person view on the subject. But this post is very interesting since, well, US does have a wide range effect on other parts of the world. In my country (Philippines), especially, has a tie with the US for a long, long time. Though my American friend said that the US don't really see much use and importance to our country, much of what's happening here also is connected to the present state of the US.

Are there presently any movements in the US to counteract the negative things you've stated?

JOE TODD said...

I am afraid the right has become the theater of the absurd. Remember don't let school children listen/watch a speech given by our president directed specifically to them. I am really concerned about the country but I have a feeling it is to late.

Sonia ;) said...

You have made my abandonment issues disappear...Kick in the ass..

Hugging ya Snow...always love when ya give me a kick in the ass reality check.

xoxox

Snowbrush said...

Diana: "I don't think that my brain can take all of it in at one time!"

Well, I did hit at a lot of different topics. I'm so glad your shot didn't hurt--now let's hope it helps. I'm in as much pain as ever after mine, but it could take another week to get whatever benefit I will get.

KC, thanks for coming by.

Bea: "American lives are forsaken without hardly a wimper"

I've wondered what it must have been like to lose your soldier son in battle about the time Michael Jackson died. If an alien life-form had been watching the news from another planet, surely it would have seemed as if nothing else in the universe mattered to us earthlings.

Kylie: "i am amazed at you sitting on a post for days."

Aside from having more time to get it right, sitting on it gives other people more time to read my last post. I have observed that most people only comment on the last one, implying that they probably didn't read the one before it. I'm so vain as to think they should.

Geek: "I don't know if I have the right to comment on this since I am not from the United States"

Oh, Geek, never withhold a comment for such a reason. I do so love hearing from you.

Geek: "my American friend said that the US don't really see much use and importance to our country"

I disagree, it being my impression that most Americans never even think about the Philippines. They couldn't find it on a map, and they couldn't come up with a single fact about it, but this doesn't reflect on your importance but rather on the widespread ignorance of Americans regarding other peoples.

Geek: "much of what's happening here also is connected to the present state of the US."

Yes, the U.S. is quite pleased to call itself the "Leader of the Free World." It is hardly an elected position, but one that comes from our military and economic clout, and it doesn't imply that the U.S. actually gives a rip about the distress it sometimes causes.

Geek: "Are there presently any movements in the US to counteract the negative things you've stated?"

A Supreme Court decision is very hard to overturn. It can only be done by the Supreme Court itself or by an act of Congress. If it is done by an act of Congress, the Supreme Court can nullify that act by declaring it un-Constitutional. The Supreme Court rarely overturns its own decisions, and when it does, it only does so years later when different people are on the nine member court.

Laws made by Congress are also hard to change. The sad truth is that those who make the laws have to run for office, and that takes a lot of money. Much of this money is donated by corporations that expect to be favored when it's time to make new laws. This means that laws are often made, not so much to help people, but to help corporations become more wealthy.

Joe: "Remember don't let school children listen/watch a speech given by our president directed specifically to them.'

Keep them at home so they won't hear a speech urging them to go to school. Makes sense, no?

Sonia: "..always love when ya give me a kick in the ass reality check."

My dear, I always love how delicately you phrase things--like a delicate flower, as it were. AND, I always love kicking you in the ass, so we've got what you might call a marriage made in heaven--or would be if we were married.

Ananji said...

I'm so glad to see your writing about this, Snow. This issue and others you touch on here are important to me and need to be spoken of, discussed, debated logically among the masses... not just between those standing on opposite sides, but between those of us who meet in the middle.

I wish I could write as logically and lucidly about this. You make many good points, all of which make me say, "Yes!"

Last time you posted, I mentioned my son, the transplant recipient, being without insurance at the moment. He is STILL without it as the company drags their feet. We did all we were supposed to do, but we're at their mercy as they take their time to "process" the application sent in months ago. Next week, thanks to the social work charity at our local hospital, he'll receive a month's worth of medications that would have cost us more than $3,000 had we been forced to pay out of pocket. If his application has not been processed by next month, I'm not sure what we'll do about his meds. We simply cannot come up with that kind of money. So what happens? If my son is going to become a martyr for health care reform, what network station should I call to record his death by way of graft-host rejection. Compelling television at the cost of my son.

snort... this issue really chaps my ass.

thanks for covering it.
ananji

geek said...

A Supreme Court decision is very hard to overturn. It can only be done by the Supreme Court itself or by an act of Congress. If it is done by an act of Congress, the Supreme Court can nullify that act by declaring it un-Constitutional. The Supreme Court rarely overturns its own decisions, and when it does, it only does so years later when different people are on the nine member court.

Laws made by Congress are also hard to change. The sad truth is that those who make the laws have to run for office, and that takes a lot of money. Much of this money is donated by corporations that expect to be favored when it's time to make new laws. This means that laws are often made, not so much to help people, but to help corporations become more wealthy."

Aah.. I understand. It seems like your country and my country has pretty much similar problems. Well probably because our laws and government systems are modeled from the US.

I do so wish that our countries will get better. Regardless of race, borders or territories, it's not right that a state/nation (or people that are supposed to represent the state/nation) should cause much distress to its people.

Snowbrush said...

Ananji, I don't know if a legal aid lawyer might get a fire started, but that's the best I can suggest. How interesting that you were a kidney transplant donor and your son a kidney transplant recipient from another donor.

Geek, when your friend said that the U.S. doesn't consider the Philippines important, he probably meant the government of the U.S., and with that I would agree. The media here primarily reports on Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Israel, and, to a lesser extent, North Korea. The Philippines gets mentioned when there is a natural disaster, or when an American is kidnapped. If you want our attention, you will need to build a nuke.

Geek: "I do so wish that our countries will get better"

Speaking for the U.S., our standard of living is still high for most people, although there is the gnawing sense on the part of the masses that our best days just might be behind us. We are no longer a great manufacturing power, but have turned increasingly to servicing, banking, and technology. And, as I mentioned, we are continually dropping (compared to the rest of what used to be called "The First World"--I don't know what the latest term is) in regard to many things that are thought to go along with success, promise, and happiness.

Geek: "it's not right that a state/nation (or people that are supposed to represent the state/nation) should cause much distress to its people."

True, but I doubt that any people anywhere are ever justified in trusting their government, it being the nature of those in power to increase their power at the expense of the citizenry.

kj said...

snowbrush, know what i love and love more about you? you ask the right questions. exactly.

sometimes i think i've been an independent thinker since the second grade. i try very hard to be reasoned and charitable, but you know, i wanted someone to push dick cheney's wheelchair downhill at the presidential inaguration and i could do without rush limbaugh for this life and the next.

why do so many of us seem so simplistic and shallow? maybe you know: i don't.

ps now i'm missing you on my blog. please come see me soon. even emily is lamenting.

xo

geek said...

"Geek, when your friend said that the U.S. doesn't consider the Philippines important, he probably meant the government of the U.S., and with that I would agree... If you want our attention, you will need to build a nuke."

-- Yes. I found it ridiculous that some of my countrymen would beg for help from the US. I think we should solve our own problems and not beg for help from another nations. As you've stated, the US is dealing with its own problems, presently and I think it's unfair how my countrymen would plead something out of US.

"I doubt that any people anywhere are ever justified in trusting their government, it being the nature of those in power to increase their power at the expense of the citizenry."

-- Sad but true.

julie mitchell said...

Hi Snow...my comment is so long that I feel the need to remind you that you wrote, 'Julie, I hope you do make it back as I would love to hear more of your thoughts'....

This current post of yours has hung with me because it is rare to read ‘real’ people discussing current affairs in America on non-political blogs.
I’m heartened by the fact that there are a growing number of citizens who are starting to realize that we know very little about what is happening here in this space in time. We watch the news on corporate channels and it is mind boggling how little information we are given about things that matter. And how much we are given about Michael Jackson…I enjoy pop culture news, but I also want to be given news that will help me understand what is happening in the world….I want to understand why it is more important to fight ‘wars’ we can’t ‘win’ then what is happening to our educational system…we are at the bottom of other industrialized nations…the chasm between a good education for the wealthy and the not so wealthy is getting deeper…..I want to know why we can’t have a Department of Peace?…..and health care, we have the highest infant mortality rate of other industrialized nations. Last year Barbara Bush experienced a life threatening health issue. George Sr. went on tv after she was out of danger, he was in tears as he phrased the wonderful drs. and hospitals available in America…yet I know a woman who is being denied a procedure that could save her life by her insurance company and others who don‘t know if they need a life saving procedure because they have no insurance..….this is real and true….I know a couple in their late 70’s who have lost their modest home because they could no longer afford the mortgage and the bank that holds the loan would not work with them. There are homeless cities springing up all over America….and it is people like you and me living in them. There is a parking lot in Santa Barbara, CA., an upscale community that will allow homeless women who own cars to park there overnight so that they have a relatively safe place to sleep.
Up until recently I didn’t understand that the Federal Reserve isn’t a government agency yet have a say in ‘every’ financial decision made throughout the world. Their motto by the way is, “The Federal Reserve, the central bank of the United States provides the nation with a safe, flexible and stable monetary and financial system”…..We owe China over $700 billion….
But none of the above is as frightening to me as the realization that the Corporations of the world are truly the ones in charge. Many financial pundits say we are experiencing a global financial coup d’etat. The World Trade Organization, is raping land all over the world while enslaving whole populations. Corporations are privatizing everything including water. The water we have on the planet now is all there will ever be…it is not a renewable resource nor is it something we can live without. Indigenous people all over the world are finding that they no longer have the rights to clean healthy water…..for an eye opening experience watch the movie Flow, or do a little search on the Pepsi, Nestle and water and what they are up to here in the US…. I can’t mention corporations and not throw in Monsanto, the worst of the worst….This stuff is not what corporate news agencies are going to tell us since they are all in bed together.

Well Snow, I’ve taken up a lot of your comment space…I could go on...and on...I do believe we citizens of the world can stop much of the insanity...we can educate ourselves, step out of our mass hypnosis and use our voices...and if we can’t stop the things that our happening in world, like genocide in Darfur, we can at the very least stand as witnesses. hug, hug,

Snowbrush said...

Geek: "I found it ridiculous that some of my countrymen would beg for help from the US."

The U.S. has a long history of trying to buy friendship. Now, we are obliged to borrow money from China in order to give such "charity" to other nations. I can't begin to see the sense in this, especially when we so badly need that money at home.

Julie: "my comment is so long that I feel the need to remind you that you wrote, 'Julie, I hope you do make it back as I would love to hear more of your thoughts'...."

And you thought i meant it, you silly girl!

Julie: "it is rare to read ‘real’ people discussing current affairs in America on non-political blogs."

I mostly avoid politics for three reasons. They are largely of transitory significance; I am not well schooled in them; and I am so vain as to think I occasionally have it in me to reach a chord that transcends time and place. Sometimes, though, I get my panties in a wad.

Julie: "Barbara Bush experienced a life threatening health issue. George Sr...praised the wonderful drs. and hospitals…yet I know a woman who is being denied a procedure that could save her life by her insurance company"

Read Ananji's comment.

I first began to have serious doubts about our system back in the early '80s when my father and Jim Backus had Parkinson's at the same time. I read Jim Backus' book about how well he was treated by the health care system, and I reflected upon my father's comparatively shabby treatment by the same. My father had worked 55 hour weeks 51 weeks a year for decades at a small salary performing essential labor; Jim Backus had been an actor. As I saw it, my father was shafted both by his rich, Christian employer and by his society; my opinion hasn't changed. We live in a society in which you are either rich, or you are considered to have not had what it takes. Yet, most of the people who are rich don't themselves provide essential services, or else they are recompensed beyond all reason. For example, if you are paid $50,000,000 a year, your hourly salary based upon a 50 week year and a 50 hour week is $20,000. That is more money than a lot of very hard working people performing essential services make in a year, and they often don't have health insurance.

Julie: "Well Snow, I’ve taken up a lot of your comment space…"

And I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I'm so glad I'm not alone. Most people seem content to watch childish twits throwing tantrums on "Reality TV" while ignoring the reality of the world crashing around them.

All Consuming said...

Well said that man. I particularly liked your last paragraph. The system is horribly flawed whilst patting itself on the back for how wonderful its behaviour is. Smug indeed.x

julie mitchell said...

And you thought i meant it, you silly girl!,,,,Silly girl indeed..never offer a silly girl a soap box without meaning it..
I did read Ananji's comment right after I posted mine. I feel such empathy for her that I sent her a personal email...What an incredibly horrific situation she is in...it hurts my heart...She is the member of a huge group of people in the same unbelievable place...Makes me wonder once again how this can be? How can there even be a debate regarding health care for all? People really die from this insanity.
Thank you for giving me this chance to vent, again!
I just don't understand so much of what goes on in the world...but my biggest wonder is why we are all so silent?
hug, hug

Snowbrush said...

All Consuming, I'l glad you're at least well enough have to dropped by.

Julie Mitchell: "my biggest wonder is why we are all so silent?"

But is this by choice or because we have no means by which to be heard? I rather suspect the latter.

Itch2stitch.com said...

Hello! I found your post very interesting, and thought provoking. I am English, so feel like I really am not qualified to make comments on your country. We have the NHS here as you will know, and I think it is a really good system and doesn't deserve the bad press that it has been getting. If anyone gets ill here, they get treatment without question or worry of not affording it. I think that is good and humanistic. I found myself agreeing with you immensely on all the points you brought up. I can only really talk about my own country though, but I feel there is corruption widespread in the world generally.
I agree though about people being willing to mourn a celebrity with a grief akin to mourning a family member, and yet they can not seem to give that feeling to others that somehow feel more remote to them. Why are people so celebrity obsessed to the point of feelings of false caring, and why is someone who is just as important, but not famous, less important to them. After all they don't know the celebrity any more than a person who is killed in war far away! It is a strange world indeed! On a lighter note! Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving a comment! It was really lovely to read it, and know that you had taken the time to do that!
Suzie. xx :)

Rikkij said...

Snowman-see, this is what blogging should be; Your post was well founded on facts and information and you clearly and coherently made your point. I agree 100% with what you said, but I'm telling ya, such knowledge will drive you mad. Excellent post, my friend. Sorry I was so late getting here. ~rick

julie mitchell said...

I’m not sure what I believe. I know that there are people using their voices and they are getting no news coverage so we don’t hear about them....but I also believe that most Americans are still too comfortable and happy to stay in the dark regarding the state of the nation.
During the Viet Nam years there were a huge number of war protesters mostly because of the draft…if there was the draft now people would be taking to the street in mass…..back then, in the dark ages, we saw the coffins coming home every night on the evening news. Reporters were embedded and we SAW what war was like.

There are so, so many without health care…depending on what statistic you read, somewhere between 25,000 and 45,000 people die each year because the medical care they receive is too little too late because they lack insurance…this seems worth attention to me. Is an insured life more important then an uninsured one….where is the uproar..??? There is a point where the press can no longer ignore people demanding change. It isn’t happening here.

I’m as guilty as everyone else…I’m surrounded by conservatives and I rarely take up the issues that are important to me…it is too frustrating….I haven’t the patience. And I haven’t marched or gathered for a cause in a very, very long time….I think about it but just don’t do it.