Tag Archives | Progressives

Bull Moose or Bull Sh*t: Is Obama Changing His Stance Towards Wall Street?

Teddy Roosevelt / Barack ObamaIs Obama changing?

Many in the Occupy Wall Street Movement are patting their efforts on the back, and even claiming credit for what looks like a shift by President Obama towards a more engaged campaign discussing economic fairness.

The President’s speech in Kansas was modeled on remarks made by the Republican Bull Moose Teddy Roosevelt in 1910. There’s nothing like quoting a Republican for credible centrist positioning. (Note: he quotes TR, not FDR.)

Will he embrace GOP Pres Eisenhower’s warning about the Military Industrial Complex next?

Unlikely.

Richard Eskow was quick to salute the new Obama:

“Barack Obama channeled one of American history’s truly transformative figures by visiting the tiny Kansas town where Teddy Roosevelt gave his ‘New Nationalism’ speech over a century ago. It was refreshing to see the President invoke his predecessor, who was a powerful and fearless agent of change both inside and outside the White House.

“For the first time the President directly confronted the injustice of our growing economic divide, which were caused by the ongoing rapacity of the already-wealthy.… Read the rest

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The First Major Electoral Victory For The Occupy Wall Street Movement?

p10b…In South Korea, not the United States. The newly elected mayor of Seoul is Park Won Soon, a longtime activist and human rights lawyer who ran on an explicit “Occupy Wall Street platform” of challenging social inequality. Could this happen here as well? Via New Left Project:

Park Won Soon, the newly elected mayor of Seoul, is “perhaps the first politician to win with an Occupy Wall Street platform”.

Park Won Soon ran on a platform of social justice. The previous mayor of Seoul had resigned over the issue of school lunches, Park pushed for the universal provision of lunches to all Seoul school children. He also promised to direct social services to helping the poor and disadvantaged. Korea has become increasingly divided in terms of rich and poor, and Seoul has some of the richest and some of the poorest people in the country. Park pledged to be the mayor of all of Seoul and not just the wealthy.

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Was John Lennon A Closet Republican?

John Lennon

Photo: Roy Kerwood (CC)

Via the Toronto Sun:

John Lennon was a closet Republican, who felt a little embarrassed by his former radicalism, at the time of his death — according to the tragic Beatles star’s last personal assistant.

Fred Seaman worked alongside the music legend from 1979 to Lennon’s death at the end of 1980 and he reveals the star was a Ronald Reagan fan who enjoyed arguing with left-wing radicals who reminded him of his former self.

In new documentary Beatles Stories, Seaman tells filmmaker Seth Swirsky Lennon wasn’t the peace-loving militant fans thought he was while he was his assistant.

He says, “John, basically, made it very clear that if he were an American he would vote for Reagan because he was really sour on (Democrat) Jimmy Carter.

“He’d met Reagan back, I think, in the 70s at some sporting event… Reagan was the guy who had ordered the National Guard, I believe, to go after the young (peace) demonstrators in Berkeley, so I think that John maybe forgot about that … He did express support for Reagan, which shocked me.

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Are Your Values Right or Left? The Answer Is More Literal Than You Think

Drawing Hands

M.C. Escher, "Drawing Hands", 1948.

ScienceDaily reports:

Up equals good, happy, optimistic; down the opposite. Right is honest and trustworthy. Left, not so much. That’s what language and culture tell us. “We use mental metaphors to structure our thinking about abstract things,” says psychologist Daniel Casasanto, “One of those metaphors is space.”But we don’t all think right is right, Casasanto has found. Rather, “people associate goodness with the side they can act more fluently on.” Right-handed people prefer the product, job applicant, or extraterrestrial positioned to their right. Lefties march to a left-handed drummer. And those linguistic tropes? They probably “enshrine the preferences of the right-handed majority.”

Casasanto, of The New School for Social Research, and Evangelia G. Chrysikou, of the University of Pennsylvania, wanted to find the causes of these correlations. Does motor experience “give rise to these preferences, or are they hardwired in the brain?” If the former, “how flexible are these preferences?

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A Demographic Explanation of Why America May Never Be Great Again

Saturn devouring

Saturn Devouring His Son (de Goya).

Populist Dissatisfaction with Economy Hands Senate Seat to Millionaire Dilettante

Around 11:00 p.m. CNN called the U.S. senate race in Wisconsin for Tea Party favorite Ron Johnson, finally ending a nail-biter that saw incumbent Democrat Russ Feingold projected at within one half of one percentage point of Johnson shortly before polls closed at 8:00 p.m. local time.

During that three-hour window of opportunity we held a breathless deathgrip around that slender hope over at one of Russ’s suburban canvassing centers.

The crew had literally worked their asses off for Russ — at 17 calories per minute, our 12-hour shifts of non-stop door-to-door troop rallying, we’d shed about a pound each day.

I figure that I alone must have knocked on over a thousand doors during this election cycle, reminding folks not only of what Russ has done for Wisconsin, but what Johnson’s Tea Party threatened to do to it, and why it all added up to an unequivocal imperative to support Russ.… Read the rest

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Notes Toward a New Political Taxonomy

Noah Millman writes for the American Scene:

It has become clear to me over the years that one of the causes of persistent confusion in our political arguments is the interchangeable use of taxonomic terms that, while they may have a natural affinity, are not actually synonyms.

Three terms that tend to get used interchangeably are:

Left / Liberal / Progressive

Their counterparts on the other side of the political spectrum are treated similarly:

Right / Conservative / Reactionary

The shades of difference among the meanings of the words within the triads, however, are not minor. One can very well be extremely right-wing without being a reactionary in any meaningful sense — think of Ayn Rand. One can be extremely left-wing without being a liberal in any meaningful sense — think of Lenin.

I propose, therefore, to accentuate the differences between the words commonly lumped together, to clear up all ambiguities by assigning technical meanings to commonly-used terms, and thereby define a three-dimensional space within which political writers and thinkers could more clearly be pegged.

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Forgotten Verses From “This Land is Your Land”

In 2005, I published a book with Disinformation called 50 American Revolutions You’re Not Supposed To Know: Reclaiming American Patriotism.

Hope you like what you read, for more about me, please check out my blog at www.mickeyz.net.

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Photo: Al Aumuller

If you were to open your mouth and belt out the words “this land is your land,” you could rest assured that someone nearby would add: “this land is my land.” The chorus to Woody Guthrie’s 1940 classic is common knowledge … as are the first couple of verses.

But it isn’t until you get to the later verses — the verses often omitted from official versions — that you start comprehendin’ what good ol’ Woody (1912–1967) had in mind:

As I was walkin’ I saw a sign there
And that sign said “No tresspassin’”
But on the other side, it didn’t say nothin’
Now that side was made for you and me

In the squares of the city / In the shadow of the steeple
Near the relief office, I see my people
And some are grumblin’ and some are wonderin’
If this land’s still made for you and me

Let’s not forget that Guthrie penned the song in response to Irving Berlin’s saccharine “God Bless
America.” Let’s also not forget the words he scrawled on his guitar:

“This machine kills fascists.”

Woody said: “This song is Copyrighted in U.S., under Seal of Copyright #154085, for a period of 28 years, and anybody caught singin’ it without our permission, will be mighty good friends of ourn, ’cause we don’t give a dern.… Read the rest

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Exhausted Noam Chomsky Just Going To Try And Enjoy The Day For Once

Photo: Stevertigo (CC)

Photo: Stevertigo (CC)

From the Onion. Yeah, that Onion, so progressives please try to remember where you left your sense of humor:

LEXINGTON, MA — Describing himself as “terribly exhausted,” famed linguist and political dissident Noam Chomsky said Monday that he was taking a break from combating the hegemony of the American imperialist machine to try and take it easy for once.

“I just want to lie in a hammock and have a nice relaxing morning,” said the outspoken anarcho-syndicalist academic, who first came to public attention with his breakthrough 1957 book Syntactic Structures. “The systems of control designed to manufacture consent among a largely ignorant public will still be there for me to worry about tomorrow. Today, I’m just going to kick back and enjoy some much-needed Noam Time.”

“No fighting against institutional racism, no exposing the legacies of colonialist ideologies still persistent today, no standing up to the widespread dissemination of misinformation and state-sanctioned propaganda,” Chomsky added.

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Who Funds the Radical Left In America?

Steve Baldwin for the Western Center for Journalism:

Very few Americans realize there exists a large network of far left philanthropists and foundations in America dedicated to destroying the American way of life, our Christian-based culture and our free enterprise system.  They seek to remove America from its constitutional foundations and move it toward a European-style socialism.  Much of this effort is coordinated by a little known group called the Tides Foundation and its related group, the Tides Center.

The Strategic Principles of the Tides Foundation

The Strategic Principles of the Tides Foundation

Over the course of its 33 year history, the Tides network has given hundreds of millions of dollars to anti-free enterprise groups, gun control groups, anti-private property groups, abortion rights groups, homosexual groups, groups engaged in voter fraud, anti-military groups, and organizations that seek to destroy America’s constitutional basis. All told, over 100 leftist organizations have received funding from one of the two Tides groups.

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