Friday, April 06, 2007

THE LIGHT OF TRUTH

SATURDAY MORNING TUNE IN LIVE FROM LAS VEGAS and LOS ANGELES to our show BASHAM AND CORNELL PROGRESSIVE TALK
from 9 - 10 a.m. We broadcast live -- or go to our website and click on the link to hear the entire show in the archives.

THIS WEEK we interview Lieutenant Eric Shine, who became a whistle blower, and had his life interrupted... by the Department of Homeland Security.


Upcoming: Congressman Charles Rangel will be our guest April 14. He will discuss his 30-year Congressional career and his new book, "And I Haven't Had a Bad Day Since: From the Streets of Harlem to the Halls of Congress." Recently our guest was Mark Green, one of the new owners of Air America, founder of New Democracy Project and author of "Losing Our Democracy." We've had some amazing guests the past 3 weeks: former federal prosecutor Elizabeth de la Vega, author of "U.S. vs BUSH" which is going to be a movie, a courtroom drama on the Bush Impeachment. We also had Media Matters' Paul Waldman, author of "Being Right is Not Enough". Last week we interview Media Matters' Eric Boehlert on his report "If it's Sunday it Must be Conservative." Boehlert is the author of LAPDOGS: "How the Press Rolled Over for Bush." A look inside one of the great journalistic collapses of our time.



"When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall — think of it, always." - GANDHI

Today is Good Friday, the Friday before Easter, a holy day observed by most Christian religions. It commemorates the crucifixion and death of Jesus at Calvary. Easter celebrates the resurrection on the third day, when death itself was conquered.

All of Christ's teachings are about the sins of intolerance and hatred. These need to be cut out of the new man with the spiritual sword, which separates hate from love.

Special prayer services are often held on this day with readings from the Gospel giving accounts of the events leading up to the crucifixion.

*************
A man arrives at the gates of heaven. St. Peter asks, "Religion?" The man says, "Buddhist" St. Peter looks down his list, and says, "Go to room 24, but be very quiet as you pass room 8."

Another man arrives at the gates of heaven. "Religion? “Muslim.” Go to room 18, but be very quiet as you pass room 8."A third man arrives at the gates. "Religion?" "Jewish." "Go to room 11, but be very quiet as you pass room 8."

The man says, "I can understand there being different rooms for different religions, but why must I be quiet when I pass room 8?"

St. Peter tells him, "Well only Christians are in room 8, and they think they're the only ones here."

******

Late in life when Gandhi was asked if he was a Hindu, he replied:
"Yes I am. I am also a Christian, a Muslim, a Buddhist and a Jew".

******
SOME RANDOM THOUGHTS FOR EASTER SEASON, A REBIRTH

I have the profound sense that we can touch God everyday when we are loving to others, especially those who offend us and disturb us, and especially those less fortunate. Have you seen someone's face light up with just one kind word?

We lived in Holland for awhile and visited Anne Frank's hiding place in Amsterdam. It is so eerie to think that human beings are capable of villifying an entire group of people and getting the masses to believe that one race of fellow human beings are vermin, not worthy of life. We have to be careful not to do this with any group - including extremist fundamentalists of any religion. Except of course Cheney's religion, Halliburtonology. The tendency in this divisive culture is to lash out at each other, and I have been guilty as well when I speak of the religious-right. But this new breed of militant "Christian" has completely missed the point of Christ's teachings and turned many people off to Christianity in the process. And I believe they are partly behind our foreign policy and this rush to war. They defeat the entire purpose of the Great Peacemaker's teaching: "Love your neighbor as yourself."

Christianity 101: God is Love. We must remember that Christ came to bring the New Law in the New Testament, and his Sermon on the Mount (The Beatitudes) brings the message of LOVE for our neighbor, our enemies, and for all mankind. For some bizarre reason, many Christians today are not familiar with Christ's actual words in the four gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. They must be listening to false prophets, for Christ's actual words in the the New Testament are all any Christian needs to know about getting along with others in the world.

The Old Testament brought Mosaic Law and the Ten Commandments, which are wonderful, but are only half the story. Fundamentalists are severely misguided by focusing only on the "Thou shalt nots." Christ came to complete the circle, commanding us to a higher law of "Love our neighbor and our enemy."


“ To learn that not only you suffer, but the other person also suffers, the other group of people also suffers… when you touch the suffering in other people you want to help, and when you want to help, compassion is born in you… you don’t suffer anymore, and you are motivated by the desire to do something, to be something for other people…and that is Peace. ”
~ Thich Nhat Hahn Zen Buddhist monk, nominated by Martin Luther King, Jr. for the Nobel Peace Prize for his tireless work to end the Vietnam War

I am so proud of Nancy Pelosi for making her historic visit to Syria. Peace in the Middle East is possible and it is happening now. We can have peace on earth if we all want it badly enough. I see it all happening according to our belief. We must take the spiritual and diplomatic keys to life and use them now.

TRUTH OR WAR

Gandhi dedicated his life to the wider purpose of discovering truth, or Satya. He tried to achieve this by learning from his own mistakes and conducting experiments on himself. He named his autobiography The Story of My Experiments with Truth. Gandhi found that uncovering the truth was not always popular as many people were resistant to change, preferring instead to maintain the existing status quo because of either inertia, self-interest or misguided beliefs. However he also discovered that once the truth was on the march nothing could stop it. All it took was time to achieve traction and gain momentum. As Gandhi said:

"The Truth is far more powerful than any weapon of mass destruction".

Gandhi said that the most important battle to fight was in overcoming his own demons, fears and insecurities. He thought it was all too easy to blame people, governing powers or enemies for his personal actions and well-being. He noted the solution to problems could normally be found just by looking in the mirror.

One of the greatest contributions of Mahatma Gandhi was in the realm of ontology and its association with truth. For Gandhi, "to be" did not mean to exist within the realm of time, as it has in the past with the Greek philosophers. But rather, "to exist" meant to exist within the realm of truth, or to use the term Gandhi did, satya. Gandhi summarized his beliefs first when he said "God is Truth," but as typical of Gandhi, he evolved, later to correct himself and state that "Truth is God." The first statement seemed insufficient to Gandhi, as the mistake could be made that Gandhi was using Truth as a description of God, rather than the summative definition of the entire essence of God. Satya (Truth) in Gandhi's philosophy is God. It shares all the characteristics of the Hindu concept of God, or Brahman. It lives within us, that little voice that tells us the right thing to do, but also guides the universe.

Nonviolence
The concept of nonviolence (ahimsa) and nonresistance has a long history in Indian religious thought and has had many revivals in Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Christian contexts. Gandhi explains his philosophy and way of life in his autobiography The Story of My Experiments with Truth.

As the Native Americans reminded us: "No tree is so foolish as to have branches that fight among themselves."


646 comments:

  1. Peace be with you, dear Lydia.

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  2. Happy Good Friday Carl!
    Peace be with you too,
    xo

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  3. The Old Testament passages that Jesusistanis rely on are mainly for the purposes of justifying the hatreds integrated into the modern Jesusistan dogma.

    We know that Christ never would have advocated the killing of gays, for instance-but many fundamentalist Jesusistan wack jobs do advocate this, using the Old Testament as their justification. Jesusistanis rely on the old "eye for an eye" passage to justify their love of State-sponsored executions. Christ, of course, called for a turning of the cheek.

    There are so many examples of this that one realizes in a hurry that the Dobson/Falwell/Robertson flavor of "Christianity" has very little to do with the teachings of Jesus Christ and everything to do with the acquisition of power and wealth, something a "poor boy" like Jesus Christ deliberately avoided in his time on Earth. Jesusistanis aim to be the Caesar that collects the tribute. Our "family values" screechers are Pharisees.

    In my upcoming blog against theocracy, I may expand upon this. I have already cited your last excellent article as a good example for the Blogswarm Against Theocracy. For the next couple of days many of us will be trying to do some Pharisee-debunking. Any who are concerned about the "family values" agenda should consider joining us.

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  4. "When was the last time you heard of a Christian fundamentalist nation? When was the last time that Christianity killed non-believers and tortured those who ran afoul of the religious laws?

    If you answered, "the middle ages"--you are correct.

    Why not that long ago, there was a peaceful transition of power in the only christian theocracy in the world--the Vatican. Not a single person was killed or tortured. When some minor outrage is perpetrated on Christians, the Christian "street" does not go postal and demand death to the unbelievers.

    All the hysterics on this issue come from the foaming mouths of the presumably educated intellectual elite of this country, who are expected to be in possession of critical thinking skills (otherwise why do we call them intellectuals?--but that is for another post).

    Indeed, it is interesting to observe that while these intellectuals and academics and cultural leaders are the source of many-if not all--of the most absurd charges against Christianity, middle America is much more rational and tolerant toward religious expression in general and have their heads on a lot straighter than many professors and artistes who are not at all abashed when their members spew forth the most incredible foolishness (clinically referred to as paranoid-infested BS)."

    Dr. Sanity

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  5. "However comforting it may be to believe that Christianity is the religion that poses a threat to freedom and democracy, reality must intrude on such infantile fantasies. As these cleverly uninsightful people "bravely" confront the straw man/religion they have set up, the real danger will slip in unnoticed and without hindrance."

    "When do you suppose the "secular humanists" and leftists will organize a conference to discuss the threat that Islam poses to their political freedoms? Don't hold your breath."

    ...from the same article

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  6. Blogswarm
    Against
    Theocracy


    BAT? as in "moon" maybe?

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  7. Happy Good Friday, Carl, Lydia, Jolly, Volt, Clif, Tomcat, Larry, Worf!

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  8. BTW, Lyd I really like that picture you use.

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  9. Volt said""When do you suppose the "secular humanists" and leftists will organize a conference to discuss the threat that Islam poses to their political freedoms? Don't hold your breath."

    ...from the same article"

    Islam is no more or a threat than Christiany, its the extremist wackos that kill people and start wars for their self serving agendas that are the problem Volt.

    Are there MORE Islamic extremist wackos than Christian wacko's, I would say probably ..........but they are not in this country while the Christian extremists are, and many are in our government running our country and setting foreign and domestic policy which is destroying our country so like i've said many times we need to clean up our own backyard before we worry about other peoples.

    BTW Volt I was all for fighting the REAL terrorists that attacked us in Afghanistan, it was your boy Bush that essentially surrendered and pulled most of our soldiers and assets out of Afghanistan allowing OSAMA (the guy who attacked us on 9/11 to escape)...........Bushs incompetence is unacceptable to be he let the real terrorists escape in order to invade an oil rich country thaty had NOTHING to do with attacking us or Al Qaeda.

    Now we are losing in Afganistan............why does GWB hate his country and its soldiers so much to let Osama escape and the REAL terrorists in Afghanistan win?

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  10. Volt, while the fundamentalist Christians are not actively killing, they are spreading "fear of the other" -- fear of Muslims, fear of immigrants -- which provokes a rush to war, and as a by-product, escalates the nuclear arms race.

    Fear-mongering is the opposite of Christ's agenda. As Freedom Fan cannot understand Christ's words: LOVE CASTS OUT FEAR.

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  11. And Volt Like Worf said you can think GWB is a decent guy all you want...........(I think only a deluded fool could think such a thing)

    But his bungling incompetence and criminal defiance of the Constitution is evident to all and undeniable.

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  12. Lydia Cornell said...
    Volt, while the fundamentalist Christians are not actively killing, they are spreading "fear of the other" -- fear of Muslims, fear of immigrants -- which provokes a rush to war, and as a by-product, escalates the nuclear arms race.

    Fear-mongering is the opposite of Christ's agenda. As Freedom Fan cannot understand Christ's words: LOVE CASTS OUT FEAR."

    Lydia the Neo Con fundamentalists like Bush and Cheney et al sure are killing, their lies have resulted in 650,000 and growing dead iraqi's and people like Coulter call for and encourage the death of liberals and Supreme court judges.

    They may not be murdering their own people and may not be "AS" radical and violent as the islamic extremists but they still need to become better people rather than lying hippocrites.

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  13. By the way, my motto is "moderation in all things" as Aristotle said.

    I believe in human kindness, and I also believe in taking care of the planet -- not "raping" it as Ann Coulter advocates.

    We have an obligation to take care of our environment, but we must be less panicky about it. I believe fear of global warming may be a catalyst for change, but ultimately we must stop fear-mongering on every front.

    Excess consumerism, capitalism run amock is bad for the planet and for its citizens. Years ago I was aghast at the overwhelming selection of items in the grocery store, and years ago I investigated the use of corn-syrup sweetner in almost every product in American food, including hamburger buns, Wheat Thins, Coca-cola.

    This is an addictive unnatural substance that is made with genetically-modified corn (our entire corn supply was infected with the fly gene.)

    Anyway, our corporate culture has gone over the top in an effort to profit off of unsuspecting consumers -- and it's amoral.

    Global warming is a by-product of this excess.

    Since the 'kingdom of heaven is within you" -- go within where all the answers are and be your own judge. When I get very quiet, the TRUTH gets louder and louder.

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  14. Lydia, there are TWO types of fear:

    Rational fears, which protect us personally and as a society,

    and

    Irrational fears, which drive paranoia.

    Not ALL fear is a bad thing.
    Reasonable fear is essential to life.

    And lest I forget, Happy Good Friday to you as well. (and Happy Easter)

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  15. As far as global warming goes, I have no doubt it is occurring. That said do you realize that the main greenhouse gas is water vapor? (95%)

    Carbon dioxide comes in second at less than 5%, and most of that is natural. Mans contribution is exceedingly small in comparison.

    During the medieval warm period temperatures were much higher than today.

    The earth's history is replete with warming periods followed by cooling periods. It's a natural cycle.

    And right now there is some serious debate going on regarding the cause and effect between CO2 and temperature rise. Some feel that temperature rise CAUSES an increase in CO2 rather than the other way around.

    Of course we should take care of our environment, that simply makes good sense. But we shouldn't let alarmists drive us to irrepairably harm our countries standing or our way of life.

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  16. And capitalism has been a driving force in bettering the way of life for the poor as well.

    Let's remember that even among the poorest in our society, most have more than one television and car.
    As a matter of fact the way of life for most of the poor in this country would make them appear rich to most of the poor in the third world.

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  17. And the poorest of conditions in the third world are in countries where capitalism is not allowed or has not taken hold.

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  18. Volt We have MANY forms of alternate energy that are both cleaner burning than oil and economically viable at todays prices and Bush and his cronnies have ignored them, not to mention enbraing them will help lessen or end our dependency on imported oil.

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  19. Natural Gas is both cleaner burner and better for the environment and although it will also need to be imported it will help lesson our dependency on oil, and is economically viable at curent prices.........we just need to build the infrastructure to liquify it, transport it and store it.

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  20. Same for Solar, wind, clean coal etc.......as well as research in to Hydrogen technolgies.

    These technologies re viable and profitable at todats prices UNLIKE Ethanol which is not feasible with out continued gov subsidies.

    Interesting how the one alternate fuel Ethanol being touted by the Bush Administration is the one that is not economically feasible witout heavy subsidies............again its both politics and incompetence Bush is TRYING to support his corporate cronnies at ADM and buy votes and loyalty from them and farmers at tax payer expense instead of supporting REAL proven technologies that might impact his oil company cronnies.

    ONCE again politics before whats best for the people and the country.

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  21. Yes Volt, but nothing excuses price gouging and outsourcing at the levels we are seeing.

    Companies that outsource labor should not be given these huge corporate tax breaks.

    Why are we not manufacturing the most innovative cars and finding ways to de-salinate water? Let's put our young college grads to work on environmental technologies to find alternative fuel sources, like geothermal (underground), solar, etc.

    We are married to an archaic oil lust.

    By the way, why is no one talking about Haliburton building their new factory in Mexico?

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  22. Mike, I agree with you that alternative forms of energy should be explored and implemented where financially and technically feasible.

    But natural gas is usually found when drilling for oil, and is sometimes a by product of it.
    And we DO have the infrastructure. Natural gas is piped around the country much the same as gasoline.

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  23. Thanks Mike, I guess we wrote the same ideas at the same time!

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  24. I think you'll see government subsidies for ethanol go away eventually Mike.

    As you were talking about ealier, it's about infrastructure, which is a government responsibility. That infrastructure is currently being built, and when it's in place the price will go down and the government support will no longer be necessary.

    I know personally that MANY ethanol producing plants are being built all over the midwest at least.

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  25. All the hysterics on this issue come from the foaming mouths of the presumably educated intellectual elite of this country, who are expected to be in possession of critical thinking skills (otherwise why do we call them intellectuals?--but that is for another post).

    You're just as stupid in the daytime as you are in the evening.

    Genius, answer this question for me.

    Right now, in 2007, what active terrorist organization has killed and displaced more people than ALL OTHER TERROR ORGANIZATIONS COMBINED?

    You won't answer this, because you can't.

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  26. Volt, while the fundamentalist Christians are not actively killing,...

    Lydia, this depends on where you are in the world. I assure you, they're doing more than their fair share of killing people.

    After we see if Dolty can answer my question, I'll provide more of an explanation.

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  27. And regarding Haliburton, their reputation has been beaten into the ground in this country, and now you wonder why they want to leave?

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  28. Please do enlighten me Roger. I AM interested in who you think it might be?

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  29. I'm guessing Missouri Synod Lutherans?

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  30. Volt we do have the natural gas pipelin infrastructure but to import it from other countries like we do oil we need technology to liquify it, tankers to transport the liquified natural gas and terminals to unload from the tankers and store until it is piped to where it needs to go.

    Our natural gas production is declining while demand is rising, production has peaked just like oil production did in the 1970's.

    there is talk among Natural gas rich countries about forming an OPEC like cartel......but right now thee are no production limits or quotas.

    Quatar is the leading exporter to the USA and Russia is the leading exporter to Europe.

    We would still be dependent on other countries to export natural gas to us, but it would help us diversify and lesson outr dependency on imported oil and susceptibility to oil shocks that could devsaste our economy and it is cleaner burning and better for the environment and would help lessen global warmer by reducing greenhouse gasses.

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  31. Volt said "I think you'll see government subsidies for ethanol go away eventually Mike.

    As you were talking about ealier, it's about infrastructure, which is a government responsibility. That infrastructure is currently being built, and when it's in place the price will go down and the government support will no longer be necessary.

    I know personally that MANY ethanol producing plants are being built all over the midwest at least.

    10:12 AM"


    I think you are right on the money if you are talking about Nat Gas, Solar or wind.........as we need the government to develop and support the infrastructure development,...........as for Ethanol I dont think it is economically viable without subsidies I have heard it costs more to produce than the energy you get out of it and even at todays high gas prices it cant compete with gasoline.

    I dont think its the answer, although i could be wrong.

    I have however heard there is a new type of ethanol made from waste materials like corn husks and wood fiber that could possible be mor economical.

    But i'm not a fan or supporter of Ethanol, it is not economically feasible and it raises prices of corn and grain so you are robbing peter to pay paul for a technology that is economoically inferior to many others.

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  32. Well, I gotta run out for awhile.

    I do look forward to Roger's explanation. I'm sure he's going to cite Christians and reading up on that should prove fascinating.

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  33. Hey Lydia?

    You ROCK.

    I was just watching an episode of Simon and Simon, and they were on this gameshow called "Family Forecast", and in walks this smoking hot blonde Vanna White like hostess, and it was YOU!

    You were Lisa, the Vanna White of "Family Forecast".

    Only you were a bad Vanna White, lol. You were cheeting. If you put your hand on your hip, the constestants knew to pick "Geography", and if you touched your forehead, they picked History.

    You were a bad little hostess, lol.

    You're great Lydia. The world could use ten thousand more of you.

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  34. A long article, but worth the read I think!

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  35. Inflation Pickpocket:
    How Scott Used Inflation
    To Separate Peter From His Net Worth

    Dan Amerman

    Inflation is not an even game, it is not a fair game, and we are not all in this boat together. For inflation is not about destroying everyone's wealth - it is about redistributing that wealth, and if you don't understand this, then it will likely be your wealth that will be getting redistributed.
    ACT ONE: Smooth Economic Sailing

    To illustrate how inflation redistributes wealth, we will use a simple morality play with two investors, in three acts. Peter is our virtuous hero, for he understands that a penny saved is a penny earned. Peter has been diligently saving for retirement, and that saving has taken two forms. The first was paying down all his debts, and the second was building up retirement assets. So Peter contributed to society through his work, was paid for his contributions, controlled his spending, responsibly deferred his gratification, and built up $100,000 in hard-earned savings.

    Scott is our irresponsible villain. Scott is not the kind of guy who appreciates the wisdom of being debt-free, indeed, Scott doesn't assign any moral implications to how he manages his money at all. Scott has a use for $100,000, he sees that Peter has the money ready for investment, so Scott borrows $100,000 from Peter.

    So, in the smooth economic waters of the present, virtuous Peter has a $100,000 asset with no debt, and irresponsible Scott has a $100,000 debt.

    (Both hero and villain happen to be Baby Boomers, for there are aspects of this play that are particularly appropriate for investors of the Boomer generation. However, the lessons apply to all investors, and indeed, some aspects are even more applicable for many investors outside the United States than they are for American investors.)

    ACT TWO: Picking The Pocket

    The Boomers start to retire, and begin simultaneously trying to convert their bountiful paper wealth supply of dollar denominated investments into a quite limited supply of real goods and services, even as government deficits reach all new levels in attempting to pay for Social Security and Medicare. The Chinese and Japanese stop buying US treasury bonds (and thereby stop supporting the dollar), and instead directly buy oil, which is in much tighter supply than it used to be. The US scrambles to simultaneously find buyers for the Boomer's securities, buyers for the bonds needed to pay for Boomer retirement promises, and hard currency to buy oil from exporters that will no longer accept dollars. (A concise description of some complex issues, but this is a short play and illustration, not an econometric model.)

    The dollar drops 90%.

    The former dollar is now only worth ten cents. What you used to be able to buy for $1 now costs $10. Whichever way you care to look at it, 90% of the former value of the dollar is gone. And so is 90% of the value of the debt which Scott owes Peter.

    In real (inflation-adjusted) terms, the $100,000 investment that constituted Peter's loan to Scott is now only worth $10,000. So Peter has lost $90,000 of his investment, in purchasing power terms. Scott, on the other hand, no longer owes $100,000 in real terms. He only owes $10,000 in inflation-adjusted terms, meaning he his personal purchasing power is $90,000 ahead in real terms of where he started (or $900,000 ahead of where he was in nominal terms, keeping in mind that it now takes a dollar to buy what ten cents used to).

    By borrowing $100,000 in pre-inflationary dollars, and paying back (in full) $100,000 in post-inflationary dollars, Scott has used inflation to redistribute $90,000 in real wealth out of Peter's net worth, and into his own net worth. By better understanding that inflation destroys debts even as it destroys dollar assets, Scott has used inflation to take $90,000 directly from the virtuous and cautious Peter, just as effectively as if he had picked Peter's pocket.

    ACT THREE: Real Assets & Pieces of the Pie

    To more fully understand what happened and how Peter was separated from his net worth, let's take a closer look our "villain", Scott, and the chart below. Like everyone else who knows how to read a newspaper, Scott was aware that there were huge economic issues associated with paying for the retirement of the Baby Boom. As a regular reader of contrarian financial education websites, Scott was further aware that the easiest way of reneging on debts was to inflate the currency. If the politicians of this generation make easy promises will be too expensive to possibly pay in the future - the politicians of the next generation merely inflate the currency (while "managing" the official indexes). So that a nation (or individual) legally pays in full in contractual terms what has been promised, but those payments are only worth a small fraction of what the original debt was.

    Scott was in fact just as responsible a saver as Peter, which is how he built his own $100,000 in savings. Because he saw inflation coming, unlike Peter, Scott put his savings into solid, real assets of the sort that withstand inflation (such as precious metals, cash flow producing properties and other contrarian assets). Because Scott understood economics, he was happy to take Peter's loan as well, particularly at an interest rate that was only slightly above the then low rate of inflation. Scott took that money, and purchased another $100,000 of hard assets. Scott's pre-inflation combined position was $200,000 in real assets, and $100,000 in dollar debts, for a net worth of $100,000.

    Scott further understood that, ultimately, dollars are symbols and resources are reality. That what he needed in retirement wasn't actually electronic symbols in a brokerage statement -- but the right to convert his savings into goods and services so that he would be able to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle. So Scott prepared the chart below:


    As can be seen above, Peter and Scott each started with an equal net worth, and an equal claim on goods and services, meaning that each has an equal right to goods and services in retirement. The ending bottom line, however, is Scott owns 95% of the rights to the goods and services, and Peter only owns 5%. So Peter spends his 70s cleaning tables at a fast food restaurant, while Scott enjoys a verandah suite on frequent cruises.

    And the most nefarious part of this little confidence scheme? The mark never realized what happened to him. Because Scott repaid Peter in full, as contractually promised. While sweeping floors, Peter frequently shook his head about the irony of his investing well in an investment that paid him back, and yet losing the purchasing power of his net worth to the same inflation that claimed the retirement assets of nearly all of his friends. Never realizing that Scott had quite deliberately used inflation to take $90,000 of that net worth.

    A Deliberately Offensive Story

    What a horrible ending to a perfectly lousy story! The virtuous and debt-free hero makes a good investment that is repaid in full, but still must spend his golden years cleaning up after teenagers. Meanwhile the villain is cruising around the world as a reward for his fiscal irresponsibility. If you are feeling a bit outraged and perhaps even offended by the way the story is presented and how it turns out - good! For that means you are learning a crucial but little understood lesson about inflation right now by reading an article, instead of learning it by losing much of your net worth in the future.

    For good reason, there is an enormously powerful paradigm right now, this morality play that many of us were raised with, that says savings are good and debt is bad. These are heartland values, the kind I was raised with as well, and there is powerful truth to them in ordinary circumstances. However, there is an unspoken assumption underlying this view of savings and debt. It assumes the currency is stable, that assets and debts each maintain their value, and that a dollar is a dollar. The problem is - it isn't. With powerful inflation, what a dollar is changes every year (and every month), and that turns our morality play upside down.

    The problem is that most of us want to be the "mark" in the little three act play above. We want to be debt-free, particularly coming into retirement. We want to have substantial portfolios of stocks and bonds, just like the financial columnists all preach. We want to be responsible, to pay as little money as possible in debt service - so that our financial assets are working for us, instead of us working for our creditors. Good, solid truths - all of which add up to being like Peter and having the maximum possible exposure to losing the value our dollar denominated savings if major inflation does occur, with no hedge or portfolio insurance to protect us, with no ability to even partially offset those losses through profiting from the inflation driven destruction of the value of our debts. We have a burning desire to walk down dark alleyways with 20 dollar bills hanging from every pocket. If that is, if major inflation returns, and there are powerful reasons to believe that it will.

    Changing The Names

    "Peter" and "Scott" were used to make the play personal, and hopefully something the reader can more easily relate to than abstract economics principles. The story could happen just the way shown, with one individual making a loan to another. However, it is far more likely in today's world that the financial "system" will be standing between Peter and Scott. For instance, Peter could be investing in bonds, and Scott could be borrowing with a home mortgage (the historical way in which millions of "Scotts" made a great deal of money the last time inflation rampaged in the 1970s, as discussed below, at the same time that the stock and bond investing "Peters" of the world were getting badly burned). Taken together however, the picking of the pockets will work the same basic way for the Peters and Scotts of the world, even if their transactions are not directly with each other.

    When we remove the direct personal component then, does this change your view of the comparative morality? Is Scott being somehow a bit shady when he accepts the terms of a loan that is freely offered from a large and sophisticated financial institution that is in the business of lending? If Scott accepts the loan because he has a five or ten year horizon while the executives at that financial institution are only looking to the next quarter or year - is that indicative of a shortcoming on Scott's part? Or does that merely mean that Scott is intelligently looking after his own self-interests?

    The Historical Precedent - One of the Largest Transfers of Wealth From Institutions to Individuals In History

    Let's change the date and the names. Let's make the date 1972, let's rename "Peter" the Savings & Loan industry, and "Scott" the average American homeowner, who took out a mortgage to buy his house. Over the next ten years the dollar lost 57% of its value. Taking into account the value of having a 7% mortgage in a 16% market, the average mortgage lost 75% of its value over those ten years to inflation. Which effectively bankrupted the Savings & Loan industry. Over those same years, inflation slashed the real cost of mortgages leading to a double-barreled benefit for millions of American households. Every year, real home equity soared as the value of the mortgage owed was destroyed by inflation (house values didn't quite keep up with inflation). Every year, the after-inflation costs of mortgage payments declined substantially, freeing up badly needed real purchasing power in a time of economic turmoil.

    By 1982, the average homeowner who had been in their home for ten years, had increased the ratio of their home equity to mortgage debt value from 25% to 500%. Economically speaking, the average American picked the pocket of the financial industry (albeit accidentally for the most part). This isn't some arcane financial theory. It was what actually happened (see links below) the last time inflation raged out of control in the United States. Which directly benefited tens of millions of American households, indeed for many it was the single largest real profit they would make in their lives, and still forms the core of their net-worth. At the very same time that almost all financial assets were taking a pounding, it was being in the right kind of debt was coining net worth for millions of households - as counterintuitive as this may seem, when viewed from the perspectives we gain after a couple decades of much lower inflation. A counterintuitive lesson illustrated with the dastardly "pickpocket" above.

    Playing The Great Game At Different Levels

    Deliberately using debt and inflation to redistribute wealth is advanced finance compared to most of what passes for "financial education" as presented to individual investors through conventional channels - but it's not all that advanced. That inflation systematically redistributes wealth from retirees to current workers, and from creditors to debtors, are both well understood principles of economics, routinely taught in undergraduate courses for many decades. The financial world contains quite a few wolves who got straight "A's" in economics when they were in college, and as discussed in the previous article in this series, "The Great Game, Gold Arbitrage and The Three Little Pigs", for the smartest of the smart money, the judicious application of these principles means that a collapse of the dollar will increase their real wealth, not decrease it. A deeply unfair outcome, given that it is the games being played with our financial system by many of these same people that is jeopardizing the value of the dollar - but as discussed in the first paragraph, this is not a fair game.

    The "wealthy" are certainly not all in this game together, indeed, there is a case to be made that much of what will happen will be the billionaires picking off the millionaires, as well as the pension, IRA and Keogh assets of most of us (because that is where the money is). There are approximately nine million American households with net worths in excess of $1 million, not including the value of their primary residence. Most of these people are self-made millionaires, and unless they are well advised, those holding their newfound wealth in conventional investments may find it to be fleeting (in inflation-adjusted terms). This class of investors does have powerful tools available for preserving their net worth and even thriving in a time of inflation, playing the Great Game on a smaller scale than the billionaires - but these tools must be deliberately selected, on both the asset and debt sides.

    Ironically, many (though not all) of the middle class will survive a powerful bout of inflation surprisingly well, perhaps even better (on a percentage basis) than the average person with a $2 or $5 million net worth, because they will have the same natural hedge strategy as their parents did in the 70s. With not all that many financial assets to lose, and a large, long-term, relatively low cost and tax-advantage debt just waiting to be destroyed by inflation - their home mortgages. Some people will luck through this by just happening to have the right mortgage and natural hedge. Other people will try to be like Peter in the example above, and do their level best to lose as much possible from inflation, while gaining nothing. Many others will be heavily in debt, but it will be the wrong level or type of debt, and they will be financially destroyed by soaring interest rates. A much smaller group of people will quite deliberately choose an intelligent strategy of optimized debts and optimized assets (like Scott above, or Jim with his gold arbitrage in the "Great Game" article previously referenced). It is these people who will find that the widely anticipated costs associated with the retirement of the Baby Boom will not devastate their retirement funding - but will instead increase their real assets.

    About This Simple Illustration & Its Limitations

    This article is intended to be an educational illustration, not a comprehensive investment model. By isolating changes in the inflation-adjusted value of the principal amount of a single monetary asset from the perspectives of both a creditor and debtor, it is intended to help readers understand the potential personal implications of a fundamental economics concept that has benefited many millions of people in the past, even while it has hurt many millions of other people. That's it, that's the scope, and numerous other variables have been left out of this model, each of which could materially change the results for "Peter" and Scott". Many of the most important of these left-out factors revolve around the interim cash flows for creditor and debtor, which are not considered in this illustration. Of course, the illustration only works if Scott intelligently and prudently uses a level and type of debt which he can make the interim payments upon, the wrong kind and levels of debt can be quite financially dangerous. Please carefully read the disclaimer at the base of this page as well.

    Two Suggestions

    Let us close with two suggestions for the reader. The first is to save the chart "Inflation Pickpocket", or perhaps even print it out. Then look at it again tomorrow, again next week, and again next month. Watch repeatedly as the "mark", the virtuous Peter, gets cleanly and effectively relieved of the burden of his net worth and retirement assets, by following the conventional wisdom in a time of major inflation. Without his ever realizing how it happened, while he maintains the mistaken beliefs that inflation is a fair game, and that we are all in this together. Ask yourself if you believe the chances of substantial inflation are real over the next decade or two. Then ask yourself if you would rather be Scott than Peter - and what changes you can make to both your assets and debts, in order to make yourself less of a mark if that inflation does occur?

    As a second suggestion, if you know anyone else whose retirement plans consist of walking down a dark alley with twenties hanging out of their pockets, please feel free to send them a link to this quite offensive morality play. Once they get over their initial offense - you just might end up saving their net worth.

    Discover why MortgageSecretPower.com jumped from zero to a Number One Ranking at Google (out of almost a million web pages) within two weeks of opening to the general public. Read the free sample chapter, and using historical statistics, learn precisely how millions of households accidentally turned the greatest bout of inflation in recent American history into substantial personal wealth. However, only the first three chapters of "The Secret Power Within Your Mortgage" are about history - the next 12 chapters are all about your future, the practical application of these principles for homeowners and investors, and how to deliberately and safely optimize this powerful net worth protection tool for your personal financial situation.

    Daniel R. Amerman is a Chartered Financial Analyst with MBA and BSBA degrees in finance, and almost 25 years of professional experience in working with mortgages and investments. His primary website is The-Great-Retirement-Experiment.com , a series of pamphlets, articles, recordings and books that are dedicated to taking a holistic and people-based look at the long-term future of Boomer finances.


    5 April 2007

    Contact Information:

    Dan Amerman
    Website: http://mortgagesecretpower.com
    E-mail: mail@the-great-retirement-experiment.com

    ReplyDelete
  36. Thank you Worf!

    Trivia: you know who played my co-host on that Simon & Simon episode - (the Family fortune guy?)

    Kenneth Mars, one of the worlds' all-time most hilarious and versatile actors.

    He was the the Will Ferrel Nazi-psycho character in Mel Brooks' original THE PRODUCERS with Gene Wilder and Zero Mostel.

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  37. You're welcome. It was too wild. I was just sitting there looking at Simon and Simon, and out walks this smoking hot hostess. I said outloud, damn, she's hot. Then I said, wait a second, and I realized it was you, lol.

    Thats the first time I saw you play an evil character, lol.

    Hey, when you flashed AG, you had on a halter top? Or was that the real Monty?

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  38. Yo dolty boy you idiot, the last fundamentalist NATION was the US Confederacy. It was based a large part of their existence on the idea Christian white people were "superior" to African American's they held as slaves and were allowed to bull whip, brand, torture and even kill them with NO judicial involvement, however if the Human being who is held in those attrocious conditions tried to escape, the judicial system forced the human being of African decent back into the sub human conditions which the Fundi-Christians of that era claimed were approved by God.

    After these "good christian people" LOST the civil war the Fundi-Christians from the south spread a new fundamentalist Christian idea of separation of the races with Jim Crow laws and lynchings of people who stepped out of line. ACCORDING to the Fundi-Christians who were the leadership of the south at that time whites were the blessed children of God and the minority races were not,and they are what people like Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, James Dobson, Tony Martin look back to to.

    After the African American people refused to accept the Jim Crow laws in thew 1950-60's the Fundis down south reacted with fire hoses dogs and baseball bats to keep their good Christian principles intact and "clean" from pollution.

    Damn son your an idiot from a historical perspective.

    The Fundi's who attack gays in the early 21st century, are the same fundis who attacked civil rights in the 50's through present time and attacked womens rights from the 70's forward.

    They want a fundi-christian nation here even though that would violate the US Constitution.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Sorry guys, didn't mean to step on you.

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  40. No stepping worfeus, I was just replying to dolt's latest lies.

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  41. I think Lydia was in ever TV show of the 80s. Everytime I turn around (thank you TV Land) there she is.

    I was watching Dukes of Hazard recently and there she was.

    Its just cool thats all.

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  42. From Juan Cole


    Shorter Washington Post: Feith and Cheney were just making it all up as they went, and lied us into a quagmire of a horrible war.

    Cheney repeated on Thursday on Rush Limbaugh his ridiculous assertion that Saddam Hussein was running Abu Musab al-Zarqawi as an al-Qaeda agent in Baghdad.

    Someone should please tell Cheney that his own government captured documents in Iraq that show that Saddam's security forces were a) afraid of al-Qaeda and Zarqawi and b) were trying to capture him once they heard he was in Iraq. The pdf link in my posting on this shows the APB Iraq put out for Zarqawi and the wanted poster.

    I don't know why this information hasn't percolated up to Cheney or why the US press doesn't call him on his ridiculous assertions that are contradicted by clear documentary evidence in USG hands.


    Just like the rest of the reichwing, Cheney ignores facts and the truth just like the idiot trolls who infect this blog.

    They all make it up as they go along.

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  43. Hey Worf, Happy Good Friday and Happy Easter!

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  44. Clif said "I don't know why this information hasn't percolated up to Cheney or why the US press doesn't call him on his ridiculous assertions that are contradicted by clear documentary evidence in USG hands.

    Just like the rest of the reichwing, Cheney ignores facts and the truth just like the idiot trolls who infect this blog.

    They all make it up as they go along."

    Ditto!!!!!!

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  45. Like I said on Jolly's blog yesterday, I think the Repugs are finished..........I think they will either be relegated to a regional party comprising the inbred deep south and Utah or the Party will change its name to distance itself from GWB and his pack of Neo Con Fools, or the party will fracture into several parties and the mighty and cohesive base that GWB enjoyed in 2000 will be no more.

    ReplyDelete
  46. I never really watched Simon and Simon or Quantum Leap, but I remember her from Dukes of Hazzard, Love Boat and Fantasy Island.

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  47. BTW I love this time of year, easter is such a nice time of year all over the country, spring is coming, its usually not too hot or too cold and life is being renewed everywhere you look.

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  48. Hi Lydia,

    As a non-religious person, I've had this Jimmy Swaggart-charicature of christians. I think this is especially true because I've always lived along the more secular coastal areas (near NYC and SF Bay Area). Its only been in the last few years that I've been introduced to liberal christians (there are so many!), and my view of religion has been greatly expanded.

    Thanks so much for your posts here - they are very infomrative for my evolving world view.

    --Ron

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  49. Happy Easter to you too Mike!

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  50. Mike said...
    I never really watched Simon and Simon or Quantum Leap


    I loved both shows.

    I saw every episode of Simon and Simon and Quantum Leap.

    I like shows with happy endings.

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  51. Ron, there are more people like you than you think..............i'm about as far as you can get from a "RELIGIOS " person as well.

    I was always creeped out by the religious zealots and funtamentalists and always believed far more evil was done in the name of organized relion than good.

    But that doesnt mean that ALL religios people are bad.

    I think following The Golden Rule is far superior to following so called religious people and their self serving agendas.

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  52. Suicide bomber kills 27 with truck loaded with TNT near Baghdad.

    The truth keeps marching on.

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  53. Radical cleric challenges, threatens Pakistan
    Events follow criticism against president for increasing ‘Talibanization’

    MSNBC News Services
    Updated: 1 hour, 6 minutes ago
    ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - In a bold challenge to the government, a firebrand cleric said Friday he had formed an Islamic court to enforce a Taliban-style vice campaign in the Pakistani capital, threatening suicide attacks if authorities try to stop him.

    Thousands of followers of Maulana Abdul Aziz underlined their defiance by chanting “Our way is jihad!” and setting fire to hundreds of mainly Western DVDs and video cassettes outside Islamabad’s Red Mosque.

    Friday’s events deepen a dilemma for President Gen. Pervez Musharraf: endure growing criticism for creeping “Talibanization” in Pakistan despite his alliance with the U.S., or force a potentially bloody showdown with fanatics who have grown under his rule.

    tudents from a seminary adjoining the mosque launched a morality crackdown earlier this month by threatening shopkeepers selling films and music. They even kidnapped an alleged brothel owner and held her for two days until she made a public confession.

    Aziz addressed about 3,000 people at the mosque for a conference on Sharia and jihad — Islamic law and holy war. Listeners filled the courtyard and packed the roof of the red-walled building just a few hundred yards from the city’s government district.

    Dozens of students armed with wooden poles and with checkered scarves tied around their faces patrolled outside the perimeter wall.

    In his sermon, Aziz announced that he had established a Sharia court of 10 clerics to dispense Islamic justice. He said the clerics would issue decrees, but gave no other details about the court’s supposed jurisdiction.

    He said it would begin in one month if the government didn’t move against “centers of vulgarity” in the city — and warned authorities against trying to stop his activities.

    ‘This is destroying our society’
    Aziz appealed for volunteers to defend the mosque, which has links to outlawed Sunni extremist groups. Mosque officials deny allegations that weapons are stored inside.

    “If the government says it will launch an operation against us as a last resort, our last resort will be suicide bombings,” Aziz said. Bearded young men in the crowd punched the air in response.

    Aziz then asked the gathering, “What is our way?” and students bellowed back: “Jihad! Jihad!”

    Tariq Azim, minister of state for information, denounced Aziz’s threat, and urged him not to force the government to take stern action. So far, police have done little.

    “They have misjudged the government’s resolve. We want to avoid the use of force against them. We want to resolve all issues through peaceful means,” Azim told The Associated Press. He accused the cleric of using female seminarians as a human shield.

    After prayers, students at the mosque set fire to a pile of hundreds of DVDs, video cassettes and some broken video players on a nearby road — stock from an Islamabad shop whose owner had agreed to close his business, said Aziz’s brother, Abdul Rashid Ghazi.

    “This is porno material and blue films. This is destroying our society,” Ghazi said. Crowds shouted, “God is great!” when the pile, doused in gasoline, caught fire with a whoosh.

    The DVDs included films from neighboring India and some Western titles, including a romantic comedy called “Dirty, Filthy Love,” but also children’s movies such as “Home Alone 4” and “Free Willy.”

    ‘Un-Islamic’ behavior
    Scores of female students in black burqas listened to the sermon and watched the video bonfire from the roof of their neighboring seminary, where Ghazi is vice principal.

    Muslim hard-liners, who have gained influence by tapping popular opposition to Pakistan’s support for Washington’s war on terrorism — have pressed steadily for curbs on “un-Islamic” behavior such as distributing Western movies.

    Most of the agitation for Taliban-style social controls has been in the conservative northwest, along the Afghan border, where sympathies run high for the fundamentalist Taliban militia that ruled Afghanistan before a U.S.-led invasion in 2001. The Taliban banned TV and largely confined women to their homes.

    The move to impose a similar style of restrictions in Islamabad has alarmed many in the relatively liberal city and drawn criticism from moderate clerics. It has added to the impression that the mosque and its thousands of followers are above the law.

    Female student followers of Aziz and his brother are already defying authorities by occupying Islamabad’s only library for children. The women have also threatened suicide attacks to oppose plans to demolish the mosque for encroaching on government land.

    ReplyDelete
  54. Latest Pentagon report says there was no connection between Iraq and Al Qaeda.

    The truth keeps marching on.

    ReplyDelete
  55. See how Bush's incompetent criminal policies are making our country and the world MUCH LESS SAFE.

    the terrorists who attacked us are winning and seizing control again in Afghanistan and now they are trying to do likewise in Pakistan.........and Pakistan actually has Nukes UNLIKE Iraq or Iran.

    The terrorists are gaining support because of the worlds disdain and scorn of GWB and his ignorant arrogant policies.

    ReplyDelete
  56. Pakistan is really an enemy. They take U.S money and harbor and train terrorist to attack us.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Defense Dept says they can't prosecute illiegal activities of contractors in Iraq because of jurisdiction.

    Maybe the real reason is because it is Halliburton and Blackwater.

    ReplyDelete
  58. New York Sun is calling for Dick Cheney to run for President in 2008.

    Deranged idea from a Deranged newspaper about a Deranged blowhard.

    ReplyDelete
  59. Larry the Saudi Wahabbists are the dogmatic and financial backers of the Pakistani extremists and have been since the early 1980's when the Saudis told Reagan and Bush sr they could control them and the afghan freedom fighters like Osama Bin Laden.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Is that why the Pakistan President does little to rid his country of the rogues in hiding?

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  61. Worf, it was a halter top, I think. I was definitely not flashing him my breasts!

    The only show my kids are thrilled about is Full House, in which I played DJ's Spanish teacher with dark hair. I went brunette for awhile.

    Last year a bunch of little girls came up to me at school, really nervous, "Were you on Full House? Can we get your autograph?" Somehow they figured out I was on that show.

    That show is so popular; it's on Nick at NIte every night!

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  62. Larry the reichwing wants newt to be dead eye's running mate;

    Cheney and Newt both gutless chicken hawks need to be the poster boys for the rest of the gutless neo-con re-pubies for the next couple of decades.

    ReplyDelete
  63. Larry said...
    Pakistan is really an enemy. They take U.S money and harbor and train terrorist to attack us."

    Your Right Larry, Musharef takes our money and claims to be an ally but the majority bof the population hates us and are hardliner fundamentalists and a coup is very probable and if that were to happen the terrorists could get a hold of nuclear weapons.

    But Bush doesnt care about REAL terrorists, only oil profits for himself and his big oil cronnies!

    ReplyDelete
  64. Come on Lidia, your kids didnt like TCFC?????????

    ReplyDelete
  65. Lydia Cornell said...
    Worf, it was a halter top, I think. I was definitely not flashing him my breasts!


    So much for that fantasy.

    LOL.

    I was not a big Full House fan. In fact, I never watched it. Too family oriented for my tastes.

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  66. Only 18% of this Country (the backwash) supports Cheney and thats being generous.

    I'd love to see Cheney or Newt Run, it would be a good laugh............any of you guys remember that communist guy Gus Hall that used to run for President every year..........at this point even a wacco like that coulkd give Cheney or Newt a run for their Money.

    Nader would Clean Cheney's clock easily right now!

    ReplyDelete
  67. Clif said...
    Larry the reichwing wants newt to be dead eye's running mate;

    Cheney and Newt both gutless chicken hawks need to be the poster boys for the rest of the gutless neo-con re-pubies for the next couple of decades."

    Like I said Clif, i'd love for those two fols to run. it would be a good laugh...........theyre a damn joke.

    ReplyDelete
  68. But Simon and Simon was the stuff.

    Gerald McCraney was a bad ass back then. When he dropped down into firing position with that big 357 and fired a few shots at a fleeing vehicle or something, it looked like he was really firing a real gun. Like on a firing range or something. Eastwood was cool and all, but his one handed firing of that 44 Mag looked cool but wasn't realistic. McCraney fired like someone trained to fire a weapon.

    Now he does those hallmark shows. He did this one show about a family travelling around in a mobile home too.

    ReplyDelete
  69. The BCCI Game: Banking on America, banking on Jihad is a chapter in a new book by Lucy Kornisar titled A Game As An Old Empire.

    The aforementioned chapter focuses on the link between Saddam Hussein, Osama Bin Laden and the Bush Family.

    It focuses on the Bank of Credit and Commerce International- a dirty offshore bank that Reagan's CIA used to run guns to run guns to Hussein and finance Bin Laden, and move money in the Iran-Contra scandal.

    It tells of Bush Sr and Jr. and their secret dealing with Hussein and Bin Laden.

    ReplyDelete
  70. Did you guys see this video of Bill Oreilly and Geraldo Rivetheadaira going at it?

    This is the funniest thing you'll ever see.

    THE FUNNIEST DAMNED THING YOU'LL EVER SEE

    ReplyDelete
  71. Next time a troll claims we're the looneybins, show em that.

    BAWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHHAHAHHAHAHA

    ReplyDelete
  72. I saw it on Imus. I wonder how much was hype and how much was real.

    Geraldo's face was red from yelling.

    ReplyDelete
  73. It was real. Neither of them are that good at acting.

    ReplyDelete
  74. Monica Goodling is RESIGNING!

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  75. BREAKING NEWS: MONICA GOODLING RESIGNS!

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  76. Larry. Watch it again. When Geraldo says "who the hell cares" it pissed off Oreilly, cause it put him in that "stupid chair" he likes to put his guests in.

    Oreilly looked like he was about to blow a gasket.

    LMAO.

    It was soooooo funny.

    ReplyDelete
  77. Bush is losing his top Iraq advisor as Meghan o" Sullivan is resigning.

    If Bush's Iraq policy was from his top Iraq advisor, then we shouldn't notice anything by her leaving.

    ReplyDelete
  78. But Monica Goodling is the offical who took the 5th instead of testifying in the Attorney purge investigation.

    Well she just announced that now, she is resigning tomorrow.

    uh oh

    ReplyDelete
  79. I see what you mean Worf. O'Reilly was mad. Maybe he will stop having him on his show since he favors illegal immigration.

    ReplyDelete
  80. Monica Goodling resigning won't keep her out of the hot seat.

    ReplyDelete
  81. Monica Goodling may have had a much heavier role in selecting US attorneys then we were led to believe. Being as she was the DOJ liason to the White House, and she took the 5th, most people assumed she has some crime she is hiding.

    Well now she is resiging.

    Looks grim.

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  82. The House of Cards is crumbling................and I bet Goodling is FORCED to testify............that 5th Amendment crap is BS, she's basically admitting crimes were committed.

    The prosecutor needs to either only ask questions pertaining to what others did or give her immunity for the one thing that might incriminate her.

    BUT SHE NEEDS TO TESTIFY........or be charged with obstruction of Justice.

    ReplyDelete
  83. I saw the Geraldo thing,,,,,,what a bunch of idiots.

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  84. Oh this is going to cast a huge light on the White House purge of US Attorneys.

    The DOJ didn't do this. The White House did. And they instilled a puppet into the DOJ. Put him right at the top. And the DOJ couldn't do anything about that. But they can do something about this.

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  85. Mike said...
    I saw the Geraldo thing,,,,,,what a bunch of idiots.


    I have it saved in my favorites.

    Whenever I am feeling a little down, I just boot it up, and my worries float away...... BAWAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHHAHAHHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHAAHAHHAHAHAAAHA

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  86. Military Spending Gets Forty Per Cent of Every Income Tax Dollar

    As taxpayers prepare to meet this year's April 16th tax deadline, they may want to consider that almost 40 cents of every tax dollar is spent on past and present military spending, according to a newly released publication by the National Priorities Project (NPP), a non-profit research organization that examines the local impact of federal spending policies.

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  87. Goodling resigning after taking the 5th is just an admission of guilt.

    ReplyDelete
  88. 40 cents out of every dollar Clif and look how much of that goes toward Halliburton, Blackwater and others instead of the troops and their needs.

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  89. Chris Matthews is talking about the Goodling resignation.

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  90. With Kyle Sampson and Monica Goodling gone who is going to cover up speedy gonzo's total incompetence?

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  91. Lets look back on History this year on Good Friday Goodling resigns last year on this same day, if i remember correctly the warrantless spying on Americans scandal broke in the MSM and Moo Moo and the trolls were out in full forcetrying to derail.

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  92. Its on all Wolf Blitzer too.

    I think Goodling is probably trying to distance herself from the administration, and even incriminate them, without directly incriminating them.

    She's a lawyer for crying out loud. She knows exactly how this will look for the White House and Gonzales.

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  93. Tweety is bitch slapping the idiocy of dead eye about the lies he sold to get the illegal invasion of Iraq, too bad Cheney isn't in the Hague right now defending his LIES.

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  94. Holy crap Clif, 40% of our tax dollars are going to the military for Bush's illegal incompetent wars thats reprehensible.............Congress REALLY needs to provide some oversight as to how this idiot is squandering our tax dollars.

    How much is being spent on education or alternate energy or supporting the our veterans or the poor?

    ReplyDelete
  95. Since Goodling will not have government attorneys and hired her own, maybe she will flip on the rest of them for a pass on herself.

    ReplyDelete
  96. I WORFEUS said...
    Oh this is going to cast a huge light on the White House purge of US Attorneys.

    The DOJ didn't do this. The White House did. And they instilled a puppet into the DOJ. Put him right at the top. And the DOJ couldn't do anything about that. But they can do something about this."

    I think your absolutely right............I've said from day one when this scandal broke that this has teeth and this is the big one that will bring many of these cronnies down.

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  97. Gonzo looks aweful guilty from what Goodling and Sampson have said and .........not said.

    I say he goes down by Summer at the latest.

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  98. Speedy has been in hiding to practice his lies before he testifies.

    I guess he will have to really work on those lies now.

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  99. Spedy Gonzo is a gonna be high tailin' it back to Texas by the beginning of summer if any of his LIES is exposed April 17th, and Monica Goodling has to appear before congress their subpoenas are binding and ignoring them will set her ass in prison, her quasi-robertson degree not with standing.

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  100. I guess he's rehearsing to make his BS and spin sound remotely credible.........too bad NO ONE with half a brain will buy his lies maybe the 18% backwash like TT and Moo Moo and Rusty will.

    ReplyDelete
  101. As I figured, Dolty can't answer my question.

    The world's worst active terrorist organization is not Islamic, not Tamil, not even Maoist. The people who assert that Christian fanatics are somehow less violent than any other form of fanatic are willfully denying that fanaticism of any stripe is almost always evil.

    It is also instructive to check out who it was Tim McVeigh was buddying up to in the days before he blew up the Murrah building. Violent Christianity is not a thing of the past, although (thankfully) our own CI elements have been dormant since Oklahoma City brought so much heat down on them.

    With the sharp rise in white supremacist organization membership of the last few years, I expect the dormant period to end, fairly soon.

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  102. How will Goodling refuse to testify now?

    ReplyDelete
  103. Larry said...
    Pakistan is really an enemy. They take U.S money and harbor and train terrorist to attack us."

    Your Right Larry, Musharef takes our money and claims to be an ally but the majority bof the population hates us and are hardliner fundamentalists and a coup is very probable and if that were to happen the terrorists could get a hold of nuclear weapons.


    Pakistan, as we understand countries to be, has never really existed anyway.

    I tried to cover the contemporary history of Pakistan awhile back.

    ReplyDelete
  104. I remember the article Jolly and just as that part is a mirage, so is Bush's claim of their being an ally.

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  105. Just read the article jolly........it appears Pakistan is a powder keg waiting to explode just like iraq.............but in Iraq the Chimp GWB poured gas on it and threw a lit match on the mix.

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  106. There are so many factions in Pakistan.... all ready to slit each others' throats. I'm not sure why one would willingly ally with any of them, since none of them would be notable for loyalty. Even now in Waziristan, the local hardliners are shooting up the foreign radicals. Next year, they'll probably be allying with them again.

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  107. Bush will ignite the Pakaistan match before he leave office. Bush is an unrealiable as all the factions in POackistan.

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  108. John "left behind" McCain tells 60 minutes, which will be aired Sunday night that he "misspoke" about the security in Iraq.

    McCain acknowledges that heavily armed troops and helicopters accompanied him on his shopping spree.

    What else could the intrepid old phony say when cameras followed his every move.

    This should really help the "straight lying express" get his campaign back on track.

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  109. Mike said...

    think your absolutely right............I've said from day one when this scandal broke that this has teeth and this is the big one that will bring many of these cronnies down.

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  110. Remember my prediction Mike.

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  111. And its only April.

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  112. I hope you are right Worfeus. That would make this a banner year.

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  113. Bush will ignite the Pakistan match before he leave office. Bush is an unreliable as all the factions in Pakistan.

    Hey, if he intervenes in Pakistan, we can be sure that "The Uniter" would cause a lot of the locals to forget about their squabbling for awhile while they concentrated on us.

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  114. The entire Mideast is quietly forgetting their hates for each other, and quietly moving that hate toward the U.S.

    Courtesy of Bush.

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  115. I certainly hope you are right as well Worf, I think Gonzo Gate can bring many of these thugs down but it certainly does have the potential to bring Bush down as well and I hope your right!!!!!!

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  116. Three U.S attorneys in Minnesota abruptly resigned, leaving speculation of a connection to the fired U.S attorney scandal.

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  117. That was interesting reading Roger.

    While they do seem exceptionally brutal and atrocious, the best information I can find is that they aren't truely Christians, (and I don't mean that simply because of their actions) They are a weird mix of Christianity, Islam and African witchcraft. One of their old allies was Islamist's in southern Sudan.


    Their estimated number isn't very large at around 2000 members, most of whom were kidnapped and forced.

    And while they do affect the lives of many people, they seem to be a more "local" group without worldwide reach.

    And again, while their tactics are exceptionally repulsive, their numbers both in members and victims don't really compare to Islamic groups.

    So my answer to you would be,

    A. They aren't purely "Christian".

    B. While particularly brutal, they don't have the membership or number of victims you claim for them.

    C. Their reach is extremely limited and not global.

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  118. Yo dolty boy they claim to be "Christian" just like David Koresh and Warren Jeffs claimed to be, nice to see a reichwingnut idiot like YOU still thinks his descriptions are the only ones that count.

    I guess Forest Gump was thinking about YOU when he said;

    "stupid is as stupid does."

    cause you do a hell of a lot of stupid here boy.

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  119. I hope everyones watching CNN.

    They have a special, called "What would Jesus do?"

    Its a bunch of crap so far.

    Of course they just had that sack of crap, Jerry Fawell on.

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  120. Dolty,

    There's no other way to say it. You're a liar. Your entire premise is bullshit. No terror org has diaplaced, killed, and kidnapped as many people as the LRA has. And they consider themselves "Christian" just like you do, and neother of you get to decide who is who.

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  121. Falwell funded Randall Terry for years, and Jesus would have had nothing to do with those killings.

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  122. BTW Dolty the gutless chicken hawk, since both the major reasons Bush and Cheney gave for illegally invading Iraq have been shown to be FALSE son. The fact that the false intel has tracks back to Cheney and Rumsfeld, you could say those two used the fundi-christian movement in the US to launch the worst terrorist attack in the history of this planet. Attacking a foreign country and killing upwards of almost a million people and forcing four million out of their homes, along with trillions of dollars of damage to that country. If you think about it, they even make Osama Bin Laden pale in comparison.

    But since their are YOUR favorite terrorists you're gonna squawk and screech about it ain't cha boy?

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  123. "Yo dolty boy they claim to be "Christian" just like David Koresh and Warren Jeffs claimed to be, nice to see a reichwingnut idiot like YOU still thinks his descriptions are the only ones that count."

    Yo cliffy boy, If you don't like "MY" description, then what do you think they are? True christians perhaps?

    You don't take anyone else's descriptions at face value, why take theirs?

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  124. And Roger, just how many "Christians" face Mecca to pray?

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  125. "Attacking a foreign country and killing upwards of almost a million people and forcing four million out of their homes, along with trillions of dollars of damage to that country."

    There you go Roger. Even cliffy disagrees with you.

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  126. Dolty boy are you THAT stupid that when you get challenged on your description of what another person describes them selves as, you attack damn son your as touchy about that as the pseudo gay reference you made to three showers a day.

    ReplyDelete
  127. BTW, thanks for the civil discussion.
    It's always nice to come here where cooler heads prevail.

    Do have a good evening.

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  128. thank you for a beautiful post.

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  129. I don't disagree with roger buttwipe, I just said the worst example of a single terrorist attack son, NOT the entire totality of terror attacks fomented by fundi christians,

    QUIT LYING A$$HOLE

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  130. Run away gutless it's what you do best

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  131. The truth goes marching on while the cepids and darma flee.

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  132. Keith Olberman just declared Heraldo Rivera the "BEST person in the world" for sticking it to Bill falafel O'liely on his show.

    I bet Rivera and O'liely don't get too close too soon.

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  133. Geraldo and O'Reilly hated each other when Geraldo had a show on CNBC.

    When he sold out to Fox, he suddenly was on O'Reilly's show several times a week.

    I wish he would have smacked O'Reilly.

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  134. I don't disagree with roger buttwipe, I just said the worst example of a single terrorist attack son, NOT the entire totality of terror attacks fomented by fundi christians,

    QUIT LYING A$$HOLE


    Doltron seems to have a little trouble with my "more people killed, kidnapped, and displaced" observation, even though I provided him an excellent starting point for verifying the truth of my observations.

    Chimpletons often have this problem when confronted with facts.

    There's nothing Dolty can "disagree" with. The LRA is the worst. Period.

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  135. Damn, I wanted to catch Volty too.

    I wanted to hear his take on the Oreilly talking gorilla impersonation he did with Geraldo the other night.

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  136. Hey Voltron.

    Whats that Oreilly says at the end of his broadcasts?

    "keep it ....PITHY"?

    BAWAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAHAH

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  137. Keeping it Pithy


    BAWAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHA

    ReplyDelete
  138. Damn, I wanted to catch Volty too.

    I wanted to hear his take on the Oreilly talking gorilla impersonation he did with Geraldo the other night.


    He's become so predictable it's hard to pretend to be digesting anything he says, since you've already seen it 100 times already. I have to stop and think about how to vary my insults these days.

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  139. Olbermann showed the entire segment. It looked like Geraldo's face was about to explode.

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  140. Oreilly looked like he was gonna pop a blood vessel in his head.

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  141. At first it looked like O'Leilly was about to reach across the table when he was pointing his finger.

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  142. O'REilly is an idiot, I cant stand seeing him or Coulter or bush or Cheney or any of those fools they are such dispicable people.

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  143. I wish Geraldo would have slapped the smirk off his face.

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  144. Falafel Bill is becoming more of a curiosity piece every day. I often wonder how many of his (sharply down) viewership are accident gawkers.

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  145. Many are 78 year old shutins that think Fox and O'Leilly speak to them.

    Who else would get stuck on his dribble?

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  146. O'Lielly has lost over half his viewership in last last year...........i'd imagine he is getting fairly desperate and needs to TRY to shock and entertain audiences...............but then again the 18% of deluded inbred backwash is probably a captive and loyal audience for that fool.

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  147. O'Leilly loses his viewers and Olbermann gains them.

    Olbermann has the fastest growing show on cable.

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  148. Well since the VA has most of it's TV's locked on Fox, and almost every Micky D's do also their is a potential bottom to O'Liely's viewer ship but a good portion are medicated about then.

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  149. Between the VA hospitals and the nursing homes, O'Leilly hasn't much left.

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  150. I'm wondering if the pendulem will swing so hard that Fox becomes more mainstream and fair and balanced instead of a Neo Con Propaganda tool to appeal to the blindly loyal partisans and brainwashed inbred koolaid drinking rednecks.

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  151. I guess it will come down to Rupert Murdock having to choose between blindly loyal Neo Con partisanship and profits and viewership.......................which do you think will win out?????

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  152. Fox will never become mainstream. Roger Ailes has told his people to get more aggressive.

    But that was part of their downfall.

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  153. I'm wondering if the pendulem will swing so hard that Fox becomes more mainstream and fair and balanced instead of a Neo Con Propaganda tool to appeal to the blindly loyal partisans and brainwashed inbred koolaid drinking rednecks.

    Murdoch will never go for that. He'll always have the "twenty percenters" with the opportunity to lie himself an even bigger audience share, once the full effects of NCLB kick in.

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  154. I agree Jolly. Murdoch has tabloid papers in the New York Post and a tabloid TV network that creates poilitical lies posed as fiction.

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  155. As a non-religious person, I've had this Jimmy Swaggart-charicature of christians. I think this is especially true because I've always lived along the more secular coastal areas (near NYC and SF Bay Area). Its only been in the last few years that I've been introduced to liberal christians (there are so many!), and my view of religion has been greatly expanded.

    Thanks so much for your posts here - they are very infomrative for my evolving world view.

    --Ron


    I totally agree. I have been linking to some of these posts-there's a totally different (and more Christ-like) view of Christianity to be seen.

    I would also like to suggest to you that you visit Brother Tim at the Blog of Revelation for the views of a man who struggles daily to keep to the words of Christ, rather than the distortions of some of Christ's supposed followers.

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  156. Then his audience and advertising revenues will shrink more and more every year, as the Fools who support the pack of Neo Con fools and drink their koolaid gets smaller and smaller...............I think after the 2008 election the base for hardliner Neo Cons will get even smaller after they get drubbed in the election and lose even more respect and credibility with mainstream America.............The tide is shifting away from these morons and you cant fight a trend that powerful or you will get swept up in the current and drown..........and thats exactly what will happen to Fox if they cling to discredited partisan BS that mainstream America is sick and tired of.

    America wants facts and truth not slanted partisan BS!

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  157. BTW guys April 6th has passed with out "georgie" nuking Iran like the Russians said he was going to do.

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  158. You would think all these older people who watch Fox sing Bush's praises 24/7, would realize by everything going on, that it is all a lie.

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  159. Clif, the way Bush loves war it is possible that was a plan but had to be postponed, due to his utter imcompetence on everything else.

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  160. I still say that if Rupert holds on long enough for the Children Left Behind, he'll have another profitable run of 20 years or so.

    And his inbred-featured "reality" shows will keep them coming in to one of his enterprises no matter what his "news" enterprise does. I don't think profit was the reason he set up FOX "News" in any case.

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  161. BTW guys April 6th has passed with out "georgie" nuking Iran like the Russians said he was going to do.

    Putin is playing a chess game. I'm pretty sure he doesn't mind keeping the world trembling at Chimpy.

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  162. Bush loves war so much ther idiot probably forgot he was planning on bombing them today.

    He is on another "well-deserved" vacation again.

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  163. Clif, did you hear April 6?

    I heard Easter week, which could be this coming week.............either way I sure hope it DOESNT happen, we need to strive to make peace rather than war and take care of our OWN country rather than interfering in the business of other countries.

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  164. It does keep the price of OIL higher which benefits both Bush and Putin.

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  165. Bush is probably wrestling with Cheney over who gets to push the big button, that is if they told Bush what the black box was for.

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  166. Mike April 6th was the Russian intel guys date the MSM played up about a week ago.

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  167. Wasnt it interesting that Fox incorporated as an American company during GWB's term............it makes you wonder if they both planned what has happened the last several years well ahead of time............

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  168. Clif dont you mean Bush and Russia.............although you may be right Putin may be interchangable with Russia since he is close to a dictator as well.

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  169. In many ways Putin is Rusia to the oil giants like Bush is the US.

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  170. Roger Ailes was a speech writer for Reagan and then went to CNBC till he stole many of their hosts to start hate TV.

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  171. I've heard the Neo Cons/Fox train many of these hatespeakers like Coulter and Hannity to to move into these influential rolls so they can hypnotize and brainwash the weak minded masses.

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  172. Mike you google Russia + April 6th, and get 2,130,000 hits, the entire first page of hits reference this;

    Operation BiteApril 6 sneak attack by US forces against Iran planned, Russian military sources warn. Mon, 26 Mar 2007

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  173. Does Lydia have a radio show tomorrow........if so anyone know who the guest is?

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  174. Clif, i'm thinking Iran releasing the British hostages might have thrown a wrench in the plan.........also wouldnt it make more sense for the repugs to wait till the weekend when the stock markets are closed to mitigate some of the panic?

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  175. Hi Larry and Lydia!

    Happy Friday Everyone! ;)

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  176. Thanks for stopping by SQ. Hope you make this a daily stop.

    You have some great articles on your blog.

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  177. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  178. Happy Friday SQ!

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  179. Mike, check out her blog. She has some good articles on there.

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  180. I just popped over there Larry, i'll have to make time to check out her blog as well..............BTW is Clif from here posting over there, or is that another Clif?

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  181. I told you wrong Mike. LT Eric Shine is on the show tomorrow. Rangel is next week.

    Cliff Schecter is the Cliff who will be posting articles on her blog.

    He posts weekly on Huffingtonpost and has his own blog.

    That is a big coup for her to get him.

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  182. Cool, there's so many good blogs out there..........I really like Jolly's and Tomcats as well,

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  183. Larry and Mike:

    Cliff Schecter also posts on AMERICAblog. "Cliff's Corner" on Fridays. You should check out his article today! LOLMAO

    Yes, I am lucky to get Cliff on my blog! :)

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  184. Mike:

    Sorry, forgot to say, Happy Friday to you too! ;)

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  185. Larry:

    I'll definitely stop by frequently! :)

    I look forward to meeting Lydia!

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  186. Bill Mayer will be on Imus in the Morning Tuesday. That will be great TV.

    Two Bush haters.

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  187. Bill Maher is awesome Lydia should try to get on his show when all the projects get going!

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  188. He and Imus on together badmouthing Bush will be great.

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  189. That should be great! Maher and Imus! LOL

    Good night everyone! ;)

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  190. Hey Volt tell your Simpleton pet troll that what he is referring to is Logan's Run not Logan's Act it was a popular Sci Fi movie in the 1970's in fact they even made a short lived tv series out of it.

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  191. As for your popping over to that other blog last night thanks, we learned a lot from your little jaunt..........as for you Volt, you may have learned some new information but you also received an equal amount of disinformation............do you KNOW which is which?

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  192. Oh and Moo Moo as i've told you before this is a serious blog, free speech is welcome but the theme of the blog is spirituality, politics and Lydia;s career and tv/movies, and anything is else not related to these themes is NOT free speech it is off point spam and will be deleted, as will insults, personal attacks, and baby talk gibberish spam meant to derail like you talking about your smelly cruncy socks or your stupid recipes.........any of that stuff will be deleted by the blog administrator..........if you dont belive me, try me and you'll find out the hard way.

    If you want to be a retard and talk about your smelly crunch socks start your own blog troll.............No vulgar comments or personal attacks will be tolerated from ANYONE..............But that goes double for you Moo Moo and Rusty because you are repeated and flagrant violators of these rules who think that rules dont apply to you..............see free speech is welcome as long as it conforms to the theme and rules of the blog and blog admin not what ever your tourettes syndrome lets pop out of your big fat mouth.

    from what I have heard and read, I gather that Volt has a similar policy since he ALSO deleted posts he thought were spam or vulgar in his own blog.........so maybe you need to speak to him to get a clue how things work in the real world.

    Again intelligent discussion is welcome but if you or Rusty cant follow the rules you will get shut up real fast..........oh yeah and no blatent bold faced lies.........thats what got FF kicked off Bradblog that crap will no longer be tolerated as will no threats of physical harm like you issued to Carl or Wishing a veteran dead like you did to clif.

    You are master of NOTHING Moo Moo, and your days of frollicing and spamming like an idiot here are over.........Therte finished just like Alberto Gonzalez is!

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  193. Today we have a whistleblower!! An amazing guest from the military, Lt. Eric Shine.

    SATURDAY MORNING TUNE IN LIVE FROM LAS VEGAS and LOS ANGELES to our show BASHAM AND CORNELL PROGRESSIVE TALK
    from 9 - 10 a.m. We broadcast live -- or go to our website and click on the link to hear the entire show in the archives.

    Today we have a whistleblower!! An amazing guest from the military, Lt. Eric Shine.

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  194. Hey Lydia!

    I'm listening to your program! Very interesting! ;)

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  195. Hey S-Q

    You bear a striking resemblence to Jessica Simpson.

    :D

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  196. s-q: Thank you! I'll visit your blog. We are having John Kerry on in two weeks, pending confirmation. He just sent us his new book.

    Next week we're having Congressman Charlie Rangle.

    Ron West - thanks for your comments. Jolly Roger, I know you have a blog on theocracy which I will add to later today.

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  197. Hey Worf, you gonna watch the 10 commandments tonight.????..........I love that movie, I never get sick of watching Christmas Carol or 10 Commandments.

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  198. Hi there I WORFEUS;

    Yep, it sure does look like her, huh? LOL

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