Monday, April 27, 2009

Busted Lying About Global Warming

Clean Coal is like healthy cigarettes, it does not exist.”

Al Gore

Guess what?

The fossil fuel industry has spent years conducting a disinformation campaign about global warming – and have ignored their own scientists... on record.

Oh oh....

Somebody might go to jail.

These large polluters committed a massive fraud far larger than Bernie Madoff's fraud. They are the Bernie Madoffs of global warming. They ordered the censoring and removal of the scientific review that they themselves conducted. And like Bernie Madoff, they lied to the people who trusted them in order to make money.”

Al Gore

But will the prosecutions happen? You may be able to get away with torture, but can you get away with causing the deaths of millions? Can you get away with causing the extinction of thousands of species? Can you get away with a crime against our economy so great it could result in the collapse of our Nation, maybe even our civilization?

I think so.

I don't expect anyone to do time.

Who's going to convict them?

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has called President Obama and other politicians who commit money to developing “clean coal” “indentured servants” to the coal industry. (I shouldn't have to explain how our nation's elections are financed.)

Our politicians aren't stupid, but enough money can get them to act that way.

Our system has been corrupted.

Pollution is “clean.”

Progress is profits.

Money is god.

God wants money.

The truth is what gets you ahead.

And the future doesn't matter.

Except for one thing,

...the future is now the present...

We're going about this all wrong.

No one wins at this game.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Las Vegas Loses $20 Million

How do you beat Vegas? Ask Harvey Whittemore and Vidler Water. They've “profited” almost $20,000,000 from two very questionable water “deals” with Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA).

In the report I-Team: Deals for Coyote Springs Raise Questions; George Knapp reported that Clark County didn't buy Coyote Springs, so Harvey Whittemore did – for $23 million. And then SNWA paid him $25 million for some of it's water rights.

What's wrong with this picture? Why didn't Clark County just buy the property for $2 million less – and SNWA could have had all the water rights?

  • It could mean that SNWA got away with an unpopular move the County would not take.

  • It could mean that Harvey Whittemore somehow outmaneuvered SNWA.

  • Or, it could mean that some inside information was given and backroom deals made to drain $2,000,000 of wealth from Southern Nevada.

And then there's that Robison Ranch in Spring Valley Vidler Water bought for $4.5 million, and then six years later sold it to SNWA for $22 million! That's a questionable profit of $17,500,000!

Together, these two deals amount to almost $20 million that Las Vegas overpaid.

If Harvey Whitemore or Vidler Water had pick-pocketed Las Vegas residents, they'd be doing time. But they make questionable millions at Las Vegas' expense and somehow they're shrewd businessmen? Something is very wrong here. This deserves more than an I-Team investigation. Where are the cops when we really need them?

It is self-evident that something is very wrong with our system. Situations like this point out that our criminal justice system has essentially been used as a diversion. Politicians like to look like they're “tough on crime.” But they don't really mean all crime – just the crimes of the poor.

If you've got a drug addiction problem, and you get caught, you're going to prison.

If you get filthy rich destroying the future of the State, you get treated like a damn hero.

This is what corruption looks like. I feel like I'm watching a train wreck in slow motion. If Harvey Whittemore can get away with it, he's going to build 150,000 homes out there in the desert – with only enough water to sell the homes. This is a scam! Haven't we figured out yet what a scam looks like?

WARNING: That $20 million scam might only be the beginning. Harvey Whittemore also wants the State of Nevada to pay for 75% of a solar facility on his Coyote Springs development. Since the Federal government has already promised to pay 30% of all solar installations, Harvey Whittemore might make money on what would cost the rest of us money. And he still wants SNWA to build him a watergrab pipeline – at a cost of between $3.5 and $20 BILLION!

Is there no end to this man's greed?

Is there no limit to how much damage some will do for a profit?

...Of course, Harvey Whittemore isn't the only “law abiding” criminal committing this kind of mayhem. This is systematic. It's happening all over our Country. We all know this. In so many ways, our natural and economic wealth has been gutted. And we all know that it will just get worse if we ignore it.



Tell your friends.

Write some letters.

Join the Bristlecone Alliance, PLAN, and the Sierra Club.

Make a donation to Great Basin Water Network (and sign our petition).


if you have an idea, leave a comment.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Organized Crime – Way Bigger Than the Mob

The Best Way to Rob a Bank is to Own One

This is the title to William K. Black's new book. The former senior regulator (during the savings and loan crisis of the 1980's) explains; “Financial control frauds cause greater financial losses than all other forms of property crime – combined.” and … “The FBI correctly identified the epidemic of mortgage control fraud at such an early point that the financial crisis could have been averted had the Bush administration acted with even minimal competence.”

If you want to understand what happened with these corrupt banks (and our just as corrupt government), PLEASE CLICK HERE to watch William K. Black's interview on PBS's Bill Moyers. This is the best explanation of the financial collapse I have seen so far. It is not only conclusive, it warns us that the worst is yet to come. Nothing has really been fixed. And they will be back for more money – again and again, until we stop them... or they push our economy over the edge.

William K. Black is not alone. Eliot Spitzer has written (in Slate); “Washington had the power to regulate misbehaving banks. It just refused to use it.” As Governor of New York, he tried to stop predatory lending. As a likely consequence, the Federal Government “investigated” him until they could arrest him for something.

In Eliot Spitzer's same Slate article, The Regulatory Charade, he writes; "Financial-services companies have been given multiple blank checks, worth hundreds of billions, yet there have been virtually no mandated changes in management, behavior, or lending practices."

In Eliot Spitzer's article The Real AIG Scandal, he writes; “Everybody is rushing to condemn AIG's bonuses, but this simple scandal is obscuring the real disgrace at the insurance giant: Why are AIG's counterparties getting paid back in full, to the tune of tens of billions of taxpayer dollars?”

In another of Eliot Spitzers' articles, he writes; “It is time the government realizes it has two simple options: tightly regulate entities that are too big to fail or break them up so they aren't.

This crisis has the potential to destroy the Obama Presidency.

Matt Taibbi has written in Rolling Stone; “what you see is a colossal power grab that threatens to turn the federal government into a kind of giant Enron — a huge, impenetrable black box filled with self-dealing insiders whose scheme is the securing of individual profits at the expense of an ocean of unwitting involuntary shareholders, previously known as taxpayers.”


Check out A New Way Forward

Sign a petition at


The Two Documents Everyone Should Read

Predatory Lender's Partner In Crime

Monday, April 13, 2009

Environmental Blowback

My greatest fear is that the cumulative combination of all the consequences of all our actions for over the past 100 years are starting to bite back... very hard – and that we aren't nearly prepared to deal with this.

My greatest hope is that the cumulative combination of all our intelligence will be enough to recognize our circumstances/deficiencies/opportunities and find a way to make this a so much better world.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Pinko Humor

What a strange coincidence...
Someone starts a rumor that our President is gay,
and all of sudden Republicans organize to Tea Bag Obama????


You can go to a legitimate protest to fix the actual cause of the problem - a banking system that is in a state of corporate anarchy.

What these Tea Baggers don't seem to understand is that America was destined to be a third world nation if Obama didn't shoot for the cross court 3 pointer. Our economic system was gutted before President Obama took office.

Amazingly, some people want want Obama to fail. They see opportunity in driving down wages and the selling off of
everything at fire sale prices.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

How Freedom Was Perverted

There were times in America when the word “freedom” meant something very different.

One of those times was during the 60's and 70's. Back then; freethinkers, whom we called “hippies,” believed in a personal laissez-faire – you know, real freedom. They felt free to “find themselves” and “do your own thing.” Hippies didn't quite fit in with the rest of America, because they saw no point in not living free.

Hippies didn't trust the government (the “Man”). But they realized that the true corruption of government lie with those who had the power and money to influence government. Many hippies consequently wanted “power to the people” – which often meant they wanted government to limit the influence of potential modern day robber barons.

The peak of the “hippie” influence was during the presidency of Jimmy Carter. Not that President Jimmy Carter was a hippie, or that hippies ever really had that much power. This was more of a time when people actually listened to hippies and freethinkers (for a change).

Though right-wingers may condemn the Carter years, I remember them as open, happy, and hopeful. This was a time when America was more-or-less at peace. This was a time when we all thought there would never be another Viet Nam “War.” This was a time when our government (prompted by Nader's Raiders and others), worked to protect Americans from pollution, oppression, and greedy corporations. This was a time when we actually started to become free from the big fossil fuel corporations. This was a time when we believed we might overcome the perfect storm of population, pollution, and politics. We even thought marijuana would be legal within a few years.

...This was a time when many put down their protest signs – thinking we had won.

This was before the Reagan counter-revolution.

This was before right-wing “family values” carried more weight than personal freedom.

This was before laissez-faire “economics” and government deregulation.

This was before the oil wars and the Patriot Act.

This was before “freedom” meant a never ending war with “terrorists” (who ironically must also perceive themselves as “freedom fighters”).

We all want freedom. But there are powerful people who want to be above the law – and they see freedom from regulation (corporate anarchy) as their ultimate form of “freedom.” Throughout most of history, inconsiderate people with the power to write laws to benefit themselves have striven for “freedom” to oppress. They may seem like nice people. They are rarely evil to the people they know. But it is always easier to be evil when you're removed from the suffering.

And its also easier to be blatantly ignorant of the other side's opinion when you can characterize your opponent as a “freak”.

If you are old enough, you may remember Tiny Tim. I was just a kid during the late 60's. But I remember this tall, effeminate, guy with really long hair essentially making a total fool out of himself to be famous. He's a guy who would have been “gonged” on the Gong Show (a later amateur talent show of poor talent that got people to shut up with a gong). Tiny Tim didn't seem like anyone I knew. And this is very important. He looked like a hippie, but I never met a hippie that acted like him. So, why was he important?

As one might have guessed, there were a lot of people during the 60's who never associated with hippies. The separation was so complete that even today, 40 years later; I recently saw a bumper sticker that said “Shut Up Hippie.”

There were people who neither knew, wanted to know, or most importantly; wanted to hear the opinions of “hippies.” These were the people who must have believed that Tiny Tim represented some portion of the hippie movement. These were the people who wanted to believe that hippies were “pinkos.” These were the people who believed hippies were somehow weakening America – by having an independent opinion.

Since a big part of the youth movement of the 60's and 70's was a “do your own thing” live and let live attitude, the hippies didn't reject Tiny Tim as a pinko stereotype meant to demean their anti-Viet Nam War opinions. As a kid, I just saw Tiny Tim as weird – which is just what they wanted us to think... Using guilt by association – a form of ignorance logic: If Tiny Tim is weird, and Tiny Tim looks like a hippie; then hey, hippies must be weird to.

Because of Tiny Tim's image, it became easier ignore the personal freedom movement. And because those who embraced the personal freedom movement also embraced the freaks, those in established power apparently agreed that this had to be stopped – by any means necessary.

For decades now, many people have purported that the war on drugs is really a culture war on political opposition. President Richard Nixon, who started the drug war, obviously wanted to put every pot smoking hippie he could find in prison. It was the hippies who opposed Richard Nixon's war policies. It was the hippies who opposed the bleeding dry of our economy by the military/industrial complex. It was the hippies who wanted to live in peace – with real, personal freedom. Looking back, it only seems inevitable that not just a public relations campaign, but also a virtual war would be declared on hippies. But it had to be a covert war... So they called it the “drug war.”

The law enforcement policies of the drug war have been oppressive, hideously expensive, and have ruined millions of lives. Presently the United States has the highest rate of incarceration per capita in the world. Approximately half of American prisoners are (or have been) in prison for non-violent drug related “crimes.” And why? To lock away the freaks, of course. To take away their right to vote. Sure, some of them should be locked away. But other countries have shown us that there are more rational ways to deal with recreational drug use, and we've ignored them. Why? Some people still want to lock away the pot smoking hippies because they are just too dangerous to the status quo. You see; not all people believe hippies are “pinkos.” And sometimes the “silent majority” agrees with the “freak” minority. This has threatened a lot of peoples' income...

Some of you may also remember the Rainbow Coalition. It was a political group, started in 1984 by Rev. Jesse Jackson, that pursued social justice, civil rights, and political activism. The Rainbow Coalition desired to include everyone on the fringes of political power. It's symbol was the rainbow – representing all of the diverse colors and types of people welcome. But somehow now, in the minds of most Americans; this rainbow symbol represents homosexuals. How did that happen? It definitely didn't just happen. Evidently, the corporate media must have used their Tiny Tim experience to marginalize a mass movement for political participation and personal freedom. (If you know more about this, please leave a comment.)

There are people who don't want us to know the truth. And they will go to extraordinary lengths to keep some people marginalized.

Just a couple of weeks ago, I noticed a cover story about Barack Obama on one of the tabloids at the supermarket. I guess I should have been prepared for the same old smear tactics. But the article shocked me anyway. It claimed our President is secretly bisexual. Here we go again. If you don't support the status quo, if you try to stop a war, and if you support the personal freedom that is implied in our constitution; you must be some kind of “pinko.”

Oh by the way, just in case you might have doubts, this accuser FAILED his lie detector test.

There are zealots willing to use any means necessary to win. They will lie every chance they get. They will call us every name they can conjure. They will imprison us for minor offenses. They will steal elections. They will even give trillions of dollars to the very banks that have been ruining our economy - so they we won't be able to provide for those truly in need. Apparently, they believe that they are so right that its OK for them to do wrong... And they will be back, no matter how many times we prevail.

For some; “freedom” is the freedom for them to tell you how to live.

Of course, that would be more accurately defined as oppression.