Tag Archives | Socialism

How Congress Created Socialized Medicine — In 1798

02-john-adams-12644Is Obamacare a communism-flavored slap-in-the-face to our Founding Fathers? No, it isn’t — Forbes points out that the wigged ones were closet socialists. In 1798, Congress created the first taxpayer-funded, government-run hospital, and mandated health insurance for all sailors — moves that seemed to predict health care in Europe and Canada today:

In July of 1798, Congress passed – and President John Adams signed – “An Act for the Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen.” The law authorized the creation of a government operated marine hospital service and mandated that privately employed sailors be required to purchase health care insurance.

Keep in mind that the 5th Congress did not really need to struggle over the intentions of the drafters of the Constitutions in creating this Act as many of its members were the drafters of the Constitution.

And when the Bill came to the desk of President John Adams for signature, I think it’s safe to assume that the man in that chair had a pretty good grasp on what the framers had in mind.

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Bill Maher: Americans Must Realize What Makes NFL Football So Great — Socialism (Video)

Super BowlFrom last week's Real Time With Bill Maher, also on the Huffington Post:
New Rule: With the Super Bowl only a week away, Americans must realize what makes NFL football so great: socialism. That's right, for all the F-15 flyovers and flag waving, football is our most successful sport because the NFL takes money from the rich teams and gives it to the poor teams ... just like President Obama wants to do with his secret army of ACORN volunteers. Green Bay, Wisconsin has a population of 100,000. Yet this sleepy little town on the banks of the Fuck-if-I-know River has just as much of a chance of making it to the Super Bowl as the New York Jets — who next year need to just shut the hell up and play. Now, me personally, I haven't watched a Super Bowl since 2004, when Janet Jackson's nipple popped out during half time, and that split-second glimpse of an unrestrained black titty burned my eyes and offended me as a Christian. But I get it - who doesn't love the spectacle of juiced-up millionaires giving each other brain damage on a giant flat-screen TV with a picture so realistic it feels like Ben Roethlisberger is in your living room, grabbing your sister? It's no surprise that some 100 million Americans will watch the Super Bowl next week — that's 40 million more than go to church on Christmas — suck on that, Jesus! It's also 85 million more than watched the last game of the World Series, and in that is an economic lesson for America. Because football is built on an economic model of fairness and opportunity...
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Cuban Medics in Haiti Put the World to Shame

Cuba In HaitiNina Lakhani writes in the Indepedent:

They are the real heroes of the Haitian earthquake disaster, the human catastrophe on America’s doorstep which Barack Obama pledged a monumental US humanitarian mission to alleviate. Except these heroes are from America’s arch-enemy Cuba, whose doctors and nurses have put US efforts to shame.

A medical brigade of 1,200 Cubans is operating all over earthquake-torn and cholera-infected Haiti, as part of Fidel Castro’s international medical mission which has won the socialist state many friends, but little international recognition.

Observers of the Haiti earthquake could be forgiven for thinking international aid agencies were alone in tackling the devastation that killed 250,000 people and left nearly 1.5 million homeless. In fact, Cuban healthcare workers have been in Haiti since 1998, so when the earthquake struck the 350-strong team jumped into action. And amid the fanfare and publicity surrounding the arrival of help from the US and the UK, hundreds more Cuban doctors, nurses and therapists arrived with barely a mention.

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Congress Refuses an Article V Convention — Has Our Government Been Hijacked?

Signing of the Constitution. Painting by Howard Chandler Christy.

Signing of the Constitution. Painting by Howard Chandler Christy.

Article V is the only part of the US Constitution that tells how we can change the Constitution. The states, not Congress, propose amendments at an Article V Convention. An Article V Symposium was held at Cooley Law School on September 17, 2010 in Lansing, Michigan. Bill Walker, cofounder of Friends of the Article V Convention, shared how he filed two federal lawsuits stating that Congress was obligated to call an Article V Convention. The latter lawsuit (Walker v. the Members of Congress in 2004) was appealed to the Supreme Court and the Supreme Court declared, as it had in three other separate decisions, that Congress must call for an Article V Convention. But Congress has simply refused in violation of the US Constitution.

To listen to Bill Walker’s speech and to the other scholars at the symposium, who all argue that we should want, not fear, an Article V Convention, click on this link.… Read the rest

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Tea Party Believes Thanksgiving Pilgrims Were Socialists

'The First Thanksgiving' by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris

'The First Thanksgiving' by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris

This ought to get conversation at your dinner table fired up! Kate Zernike fuels that fire in the New York Times:

Ah, Thanksgiving. A celebration regardless of creed; a time for all Americans to come together after a divisive election year.

But why take a holiday from argument? In these fractious times, even the meaning of Thanksgiving is subject to political debate.

Forget what you learned about the first Thanksgiving being a celebration of a bountiful harvest, or an expression of gratitude to the Indians who helped the Pilgrims through those harsh first months in an unfamiliar land. In the Tea Party view of the holiday, the first settlers were actually early socialists. They realized the error of their collectivist ways and embraced capitalism, producing a bumper year, upon which they decided that it was only right to celebrate the glory of the free market and private property.

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No Pay, No Spray: Firefighters Let Tennessee Home Burn Because Homeowner ‘Forgot’ to Pay $75 Fee

Photo Courtesty of punkpatriot on Etsy

Photo courtesy of punkpatriot on Etsy

I saw the man in question, Gene Cranick, interviewed on Countdown with Keith Olbermann earlier in the week. Seems a bit insane to not just collect the fee (plus some penalty) after putting out the fire. Via MSNBC:

Firefighters in rural Tennessee let a home burn to the ground last week because the homeowner hadn’t paid a $75 fee. Gene Cranick of Obion County and his family lost all of their possessions in the Sept. 29 fire, along with three dogs and a cat.

“They could have been saved if they had put water on it, but they didn’t do it,” Cranick told MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann. The fire started when the Cranicks’ grandson was burning trash near the family home. As it grew out of control, the Cranicks called 911, but the fire department from the nearby city of South Fulton would not respond.

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The Crime of the Century: A Review of “Plunder”

"Plunder" Filmmaker Danny Schechter

"Plunder" Filmmaker Danny Schechter

From Nick Pell at Red Star Times:

In a just world Michael Moore’s Capitalism would have been released on DVD for a niche crowd of professional weirdos and malcontents while Plunder would have made millions and garnered Academy Awards. Unlike the former which relied on the pulling of emotional heartstrings, sucking up to Barack Obama and Mr. Moore’s usual shenanigans, Plunder: The Crime of Our Time revolves around hard analysis. Plunder provides a detailed summary of the Rube Goldberg machine that collapsed the American economy.

Indeed, the investors who robbed America blind are only one part of the equation. They received a great deal of assistance from the regulatory agency tasked with defending Americans from just such a swindle. Plunder falls short on exploring just how such malfeasance at the highest levels of power is allowed to happen, though it does an admirable job of laying bare the function of such agencies.… Read the rest

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Two Minutes Hate: Working Class Politics, History, Culture

International Socialist Organization Ashley Smith ISO

The ISO Dutifully Joins "The Left" in Reformist Protest Politics

Nick Pell at the Red Star Times:

Just wanted to do a quick roundup before the weekend comes. Things have been hectic around RST central as I gear up to move and begin work on my book. Still, there’s a few things I just have to make time for.

There’s the small matter of the continuing oil spill uncontrolled hemorrhage, for which no one has, nor will they ever be, arrested and tried for crimes against humanity.

The unions continue their attacks on workers while the Chinese working class continues to prove that it is at the vanguard of struggle against the fake left, capitalism and imperialism. And Red Star Times’s favorite fake left sect the International Socialist Organization gears up for their annual love-in with the Democratic Party, its radical hangers-on and vaguely left-of-center celebrities, ironically named “Socialism 2010.”

Read the Full Article at Red Star Times

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Revisiting Orwell’s 1984

George OrwellBy Richard Mynick for the World Socialist Web Site:

Since first appearing in the popular lexicon, the term “Orwellian” has conjured up a vision of the prototypical “totalitarian state”: a one-party dictatorship that swarmed with secret police, spied on its own people, quashed dissent, made arbitrary arrests, tortured prisoners, waged perpetual war, rewrote history for mere expedience, impoverished its own working population, and rooted its political discourse in doublethink—a thought system defined as “the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.”

Many Americans would easily recognize this description of “Oceania,” the futuristic dystopia immortalized by George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, one of the most influential English-language novels of the mid-twentieth century.

Whether many Americans recognize that this description applies to their own society as well is another matter. But since the theft of the 2000 election—a period marked by such events as the 9/11 attacks, the invasion of Iraq based on fictitious “WMD” (weapons of mass destruction), the torture scandals, and the 2008 financial crash—it’s a point that increasing numbers of Americans seem to be grasping.

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