Saturday, December 25, 2010

On the Left Podcast Episode 35

Welcome to Episode 35. this week we have an interview from NPR's Science Friday.

Ira interviews Michael Specter on his book Denialism: How Irrational Thinking hinders scientific progress,harms the planet and threatens our lives. Please enjoy the show.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

On the Left Podcast Episode 34

Welcome to Episode 34. this week we have Cenk vs Richard Wolf on the Obama tax cuts. Please enjoy the show.

 Here is the link to Sen. Bernie Sanders Speech

Sunday, December 5, 2010

On the left Podcast Episode 33

Welcome to another great episode of On the Left Podcast. this week Sen. Bernie Sanders gives a great speech on the Senate floor.

Monday, November 29, 2010

On the Left Podcast Episode 32

Welcome to episode 32 from On the Left Podcast. This week Matthew plays a interview from The Majority Report. Sam Seder talks to Matt Taibbi about his new book Griftopia. Please enjoy the show.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

On the Left Podcast Episode 31

Welcome to another great episode of On the Left Podcast. This week Matthew plays an interview from Sam Seder's with author Jonathan D Weiler on his book Authoritarianism and the polaration in American Politics, plus we talk about Bullying in school. Please enjoy the show.

Hello everyone, he is the Link to Katie's story  that i talked about in this weeks show.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

On the Left Podcast Episode 30

Welcome to On The Left Podcast episode 30. this week matthew talks about the "cat-food" commission and how Obama will cave to Repugs.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 29

Welcome to another great episode of On The Left Podcast. This week Matthew talks about President Obama’s and the Democrats disaster in the elections on Tuesday. In the second part of the show Matthew comments about the suspension of Keith Olbermann

Sunday, October 31, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 28

Welcome to Episode 28 of On The Left Podcast, This week Matthew talks about attacking "Pro-life" supporters and then we talk about Jon Stewart and his Rally in Washington.  Please Enjoy the show

here is the link to the article i talked about in the show

Sunday, October 24, 2010

On the Left Podcast Episode 27

We return this week with a whole new episode. Please enjoy the show.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 26

Welcome to Episode 26. This week Matthew Plays a group of Clips from a number of shows about resent court cases. Please enjoy the show

Monday, September 6, 2010

On the Left Podcast Episode 25

Hello and welcome to Episode 25. Wow 25 episodes, well this week Matthew will be taking Glenn Beck to task over his speech at the "Restoring Honor" Rally held on Aug. 28 in Washington DC. Please enjoy the show.

Monday, August 16, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 24

welcome to Episode 24 this is PART 2 of our two part show about the ruling on Prop 8. enjoy the show

Sunday, August 8, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 23

Welcome once again to another great episode from On The Left. This week Matthew brings you Part 1 of a 2 part episode on the ruling out of California over-turning Prop.8
 Please enjoy the show.

here is a link to the PDF of the Ruling.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 22

Once again coming to you from the great State of Minnesota.Welcome to another great episode of On the Left. This week Mike brings us an extended segment of headlines and Matthew Laughs at the Iowa Republican Parties Platform.
Please enjoy the show

Here is the PDF I was reading from in the Podcast. Now since the show and a lot of other articles the Iowa Republican Party has pulled the PDF from the site and has a new Platform posted, but it is pretty much the same, just not downloadable.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

On the left podcast Episode 21

Welcome to another great episode from the Team at On the Left. This week Mike returns with headlines, and in the second part of the show Matthew calls out the Obama administration for their cowardice when it comes to Fox news. Please enjoy the show.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 20

Welcome to another great episode from the On the Left Team.
This week Matthew brings you headlines and then in the second part of the show we talk a little about the SEC/Goldman Sachs deal as well as the Wall street bill that pasted Congress this week. Please enjoy the show.

Here is a link to the article that Matt Taibbi wrote in Rolling Stone

Sunday, July 11, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 19

Welcome once again to another great episode of On the Left.
This week Matthew brings you headlines and then in the secnd part of the show we talk about the NBC/Comcast merger.Please enjoy the show.

Monday, July 5, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 18

Welcome to another great show. This week Matthew introduces a new segment in headlines ,"the Black collar crime blotter" and in the second part of the show we talk about the Kagen Hearings in Washington. Please enjoy the show.

Monday, June 21, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 17

Welcome to Episode 17. This week Mike returns for Headlines and Matthew Talks about Obama's Oval Office Speech. Please enjoy the show.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 16

Welcome once again to another episode of On the Left Podcast.
In Episode 16 Matthew brings you the weeks headlines and then in the second part of the show, we talk about Mexico and ACORN
Please enjoy the show.

Monday, June 7, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 15

Welcome once agian to On the Left. This week Mike returns (yeah) for headlines and Matthew injects a little comedy into the show. Please enjoy.

This week Mike returns for Headlines, Welcome back Mike. Matthew plays a few clips from Le Show and The Bugle.
In the show I said i would post the links to " Le Show and The bugle " so here they are
Harry Shearer

The Bugle

I hope everyone enjoys the show, and remember to give us a review on iTunes and look us up on Facebook, just search for On The Left Podcast, and join us.


Monday, May 31, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 14

Welcome once again to On The Left Podcast. This week Matthew brings you another great episode.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 12

Welcome once again to On The Left. This week Mike returns for headlines and Mattew talks about the retirement of Bill Moyers from PBS.

Monday, April 26, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 10

This week will be talking a little about Earth day and a new report that came out from the Pew Charitable Trusts Environment Group called “ Who is winning the clean energy race?:Growth, Competition and opportunity in the world’s largest economies” This report is for the G-20 countries.
I will link to the Pew’s web page were you can read the summary of the report and you can link to the PDF of the report, it is only 44 pages and a very easy read and it breaks down each counties clean energy profile in some detail. Over all a great report, but I would expect nothing less from the researchers at the Pew Charitable Trust.
The underlying data for this report was compiled for the Pew Environment Group by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, the world’s leading provider of news, data and analysis on clean energy and carbon market finance and investment. Always remember that Bloomberg calls themselves that, it is not an endorsement by me, but the underlining data looks sound. Now this report was on just the G-20 nations.
This is from the Executive Summary of the report.
Within the G-20, our research finds that domestic policy decisions impact the competitive positions of
Member countries. Those nations—such as China, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Germany and Spain—with
Strong, national policies aimed at reducing global warming pollution and incentivizing the use of renewable
Energy is establishing stronger competitive positions in the clean energy economy. Nations seeking to
Compete effectively for clean energy jobs and manufacturing would do well to evaluate the array of policy
Mechanisms that can be employed to stimulate clean energy investment. China, for example, has set
Ambitious targets for wind, biomass and solar energy and, for the first time, took the top spot within the
G-20 and globally for overall clean energy finance and investment in 2009. The United States slipped to
Second place.
There are reasons to be concerned about America’s competitive position in the clean energy marketplace.

Relative to the size of its economy, the United States’ clean energy finance and investments lag behind
Many of its G-20 partners. For example, in relative terms, Spain invested five times more than the United
States last year, and China, Brazil and the United Kingdom invested three times more. In all, 10 G-20
Members devoted a greater percentage of gross domestic products to clean energy than the United States
In 2009. Finally, the Unites States is on the verge of losing its leadership position in installed renewable
Energy capacity, with China surging in the last several years to a virtual tie.
The U.S. policy framework for reducing global warming pollution and promoting renewable energy
Remains uncertain, with comprehensive legislation stalled in Congress. On the other hand, America’s
Entrepreneurial traditions and strengths in innovation—especially its leadership in venture capital
Investing—is considerable, giving it the potential to recoup leadership and market share in the future.
Policy, investment and business experts alike have noted that the clean energy economy is emerging as
One of the great global economic and environmental opportunities of the 21st century. Local, state and
National leaders in the United States and around the world increasingly recognize that safe, reliable, clean
Energy—solar, wind, bioenergy and energy efficiency—can be harnessed to create jobs and businesses,
Reduce dependence on foreign energy sources, enhance national security and reduce global warming
Nations seeking to compete effectively for clean energy jobs and manufacturing would do well to evaluate
The array of policy mechanisms that can be employed to stimulate clean energy investment. This is
Especially true for policymakers in the United States, which is at risk of falling further behind its G-20
Competitors in the coming years unless it adopts a strong national policy framework to spur more robust
Clean energy investment.

Monday, April 19, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 9

Once again coming to you from the great state of Minnesota, welcome to On The Left Podcast Episode 9
This week Mike brings you Headlines and Matthew Talks about the Mining disaster and its connection to Mitch McConnell and the Bush Administrations Department of Labor.
This week I would like to start with a follow up on last week’s subject. On April 15th the Senate finally passed H.R.4851 Continuing Extension Act. This was the bill the house passed back in February.
The vote on H.R.4851 was 59 for and 38 against, that means all the dems voted for it right, well you would be wrong on that count. 3 repugs voted for the bill, Snowe,Collins of Maine and Vionovich of (OH)
But not voting were Bayh (IN), Nelson (FL), and Warner (VA). I would like to know why they did not vote on this bill. Now there had to be an amendment to the bill, because it took so long to pass it would have only extended the benefits until May 5th so it was amended so that it will expire on June 5th, so it has to go back to the House and be voted on again. Now it is good they did this new extension but they really need to do a long term fix for this problem, unemployment is not going down any time soon and we can’t have one month extensions, every month.
He is the link to the article that Cenk talks about in the Young Turk Clips

One of the things that I have not heard about much is the connection between the Repugs, the Bush administration, The Coal industry and the department of Labor.

From 2001 until 2009 the Department of Labor was headed by Elaine Chao. Who is Elaine Chao, well during her tenure at the department of Labor she not a friend of Labor but a big supporter of Business.

Chao “updated” the white collar overtime rules, so that companies did not have to pay you for overtime if you were a “supervisor” of any kind, she had the rules for union financial disclosure rewritten to make it harder for Unions to comply with the regulations costing them money. After analyzing 70,000 closed case files from 2005 to 2007 the GAO reported that the Department of Labor Wage and Hour division inadequately investigated complaints from low-wage and minimum wage workers alleging that employers failed to pay the federal minimum wage, required overtime ,and failed to issue a last paycheck after letting an employ go. Remember when Wal-Mart was locking employees in and not letting leave and not giving them breaks, not paying over time, and just stealing hours off their paychecks.

That was Chao’s job, she was suppose to be looking after the workers but she was helping the companies, steal from their employees

Monday, April 12, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 8

This week the On The Left Team brings you another great episode. Mike brings you headlines and Matthew Talks about unemployment.

This week I will be talking about a subject close to my heart, Unemployment.
A little back ground on my situation. In 2009 my job of 10 years was eliminated. I was given 1 hour to clean out my desk and that was it. This was Feb. of 2009, I then went on Unemployment, I started the long road of going on line everyday going through the many jobs sites sending out resumes and waiting for the phone to ring. In May I found a part time job at a sports store, it sucked but it was some money coming in since I was only working 20 to 28 hours per week I still was on unemployment, you must work over 32 hours before you are not eligible for weekly benefits. In august I once again found full time work. It was for a temp agency but it was 40 hours per week and the pay was just little more then what I was making on unemployment. After just two and a half months of 40 to 60 hour weeks I was once again laid off, this was the end of Oct 2009, I once again went onto unemployment, luckily I was called back to work in early Dec. of 2009 and worked every day 10 to 12 hours until the end of the year, I was then picked up and stayed at that job until once again being laid off on March 31 of 2010.
So when I say I know what is going on for workers right now, you have some context.

Monday, April 5, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 7

Welcome to On The Left, This week Mike gives us headlines and Matthew talks about energy policy. Please enjoy the show.

This week president Obama announced a number of programs that have to do with our energy problems. First there was the press conference where he came out and announced that he will be opening up some new coastal areas for off shore drilling. Next on April first of all dates, he announced that the EPA will be starting a new national program to reduce greenhouse gases and improve fuel economy for cars and trucks.
First, off shore drilling, let’s listen to the announcement:
Issue 1: In the first part of his speech he has once again made the assumption that there is only two ways to look at this issue the left side No drilling and the right wing side drill baby drill, no this is false he does this just so he can say see I found the middle, and then he makes the mistake of using the straw man that those that fail to recognize his reality are making a mistake.
Well I don’t buy his reality, because it’s not a true reality it is his political reality, he once again is compromising to the center position before we even start the debate, so the bill or program can only go farther to the right from here, just like keeping single payer off the table at the start of the health care debate, made the weak public option as far left as they would go. What this tells me is he has sold out already to big oil and gas, made a deal and is now going to cave.
Why do we want to open up more areas of leasing when the Oil and gas companies are already warehousing land leases already? Do you remember House Bill 6251, it never made it out of the house but this is what is said:
The responsible federal oil and gas lease act of 2008 would bar companies from obtaining any more leases for drilling onshore or on the outer continental shelf, unless they can demonstrate that they are producing oil and gas from the leases they already hold or are in the process of diligently developing the leases they already hold.
The 68 million acres of leased but inactive land- equal to the size of Colorado- could produce an addition 4.8 million barrels of oil and 44.7 billion cubic feet of natural gas each day, which could nearly double U.S. oil production and cut imports by one-third.
What this means is that there are already 68 million acres of lands that the oil and gas companies are already sitting on and not developing. And why are they not developing this asset that’s easy, to drive costs up, supply and demand, if they were to extract all the oil and gas from those leases that would cause the price of oil and gas to go down. So they sit on the leases to make sure that no one else can extract the resource, H.R. 6251 would have made it so that if they wanted to bid on more leases they had to show that they were extracting from the leases they had and not just warehousing the lease.
Makes sense right. I think they could get it passed now right?
Let’s go to an interview from Democracy Now with Brendan Cummings who is Public lands Director at the Center for Biological Diversity. This first part is a question on our growing dependence on foreign oil.
As Brendan points out this is the Drill baby drill policy from the 2008 presidential election, this is something that Obama said he was against, and he even mocked it.
The next clip is on the false debate between what Obama says is the old tired debate between the left and the right.

This last clip from Brendan Cummings is perfect; he talks about who he thinks is the biggest beneficiary of this new policy is.
That is what I have been saying now for months you push Obama from the right and he caves and says “oh, please don’t hurt me, I will do what you want” that is if you push him from the right, he has no trouble saying piss off to the left. I will bet you right now that once the bill gets out of the Congress it will be so watered down and so far to the right it will make me sick to my stomach, but the press and the Obama cheerleaders will say at least it is a good first step.
Next we move onto his next press conference of the week on National Fuel Standards
The EPA announced this week that they are actually going to do their jobs and came out with a new set of MPG targets for cars. To be fair it was called EPA and NHTSA Finalize Historic National program to reduce Greenhouse gases and improve Fuel economy for cars and truck.
The last part should be Light trucks after reading the plan it will exempt most of the larger trucks from the regulations.
The new standards apply to new passenger cars, light duty trucks and medium duty passenger vehicles, covering model years 2012 thru 2016. The EPA is finalizing the first ever national greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions standards under the clean air act, and NHTSA is finalizing Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFÉ) standards under the energy policy and conservation act.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 6

Once again coming to you from the Great State of Minnesota,the On the Left team brings you Episode 6

Episode 6 includes headlines by Mike and Matthew's opinion on a few subjects. plus a little comedy.
Please enjoy.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

On The Left Podcast Episode 5

Welcome to Episode 5 of On The Left Podcast! This week we have headlines for the week ending 3/20/2010 as well as a discussion of the 91 amendments before the House of Representatives on Health care. In segment two, Matthew will talk about the new FCC National Broad Band Plan. Please enjoy the show.
New FCC Plan for National Broadband Access: Fraud or first step

I have a question for you, where does the USA place in MBPS broadband compared to the rest of the world?
Where do we rank? 1st, 10th , 15th how about 21st, Close we ranked 19th in the world. The US has an average mbps download speed of just 5mbps and upload is just 1mbps according to that is 1/20th the download speed in Hong Kong, Japan or France and 1/100th the upload speed. In Hong Kong today 100mbps in upload/download speed is about $20 per month. I will assume that you are paying more than that for less.
Since the 1990’s States have been paying companies like AT & T and what has become Verizon to upgrade the “old copper” phone networks called, the Public Switched Telephone Networks or PSTN, this is the wiring to most homes, offices, schools and libraries. This is what most would call the critical infrastructure for what most services travel over today. They were to upgrade the old copper line with fiber optics and they have been paid over those years to do this though taxes and incentives to the tune of about $320 Billion dollars. Like so many companies before them they took the money and did as little work as they could, today AT&T has pulled a bait-and-switch because they are still using the old system for their U-Verse service and have stopped building out new fiber optic networks and has failed to upgrade the infrastructure over the last 15 years and they have done this in almost 22 states.
In the new FCC plan it is going to pay for the improvements by adding broadband to the Universal Service Fund Tax- this is not a problem if they don’t then contract the companies that have failed to bring us high speed broadband in the last 20 years with $320 billion of our money already.
FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski said last month” the 100 squared initiatives is 100 million households at 100mbps by 2020 – will unleash American ingenuity and ensure that businesses, large and small are created here, move here and stay here”
So we are going to have this network in 10 years when the top 5 on the mbps ranking already have this today, I don’t think that’s a good plan. Then there is this from the International time, they quoted Qwest Communications International Chief Executive Edward Mueller when asked about the plan, “A 100 mbps is just a dream”, “we can’t afford it”
Qwest has received over $89 billion from State and local governments over the last 10 years from upgrading services and they have only increased their broadband coverage by 10%.
Now on to the Plan, It was released on March 16 2010 and you can read or download it at, I have read through this report 376 pages of what the FCC things will make the USA number 1 in the World, by 2020 of course. I will not get into everything in the plan in this report I will just be talking about what the basic overview I took from my first read.
These are the long term stated goals of the plan
Goal 1: at least 100 million U.S. homes should have affordable access to actual download speeds of at least 100 mbps and actual upload speeds of at least 50mbps by 2020
Goal 2: The United States should lead the world in mobile innovation, with the fastest and most extensive wireless networks of any nation.
Goal 3: Every American should have affordable access to robust broadband service, and the means and skills to subscribe if they choose.
Goal 4: Every American community should have affordable access to at least 1gbps broadband service to anchor institutions such as schools, hospitals and government buildings.
Goal 5: To ensure the safety of the American people every first responder should have access to a nationwide wireless, interoperable broadband public safety network.
Goal 6: To ensure that America leads in the clean energy economy, every American should be able to use broadband to track and manage their real-time energy consumption.

Where to start Goal number one is a nice goal to have but I will rely on the rest of the world standing still for 10 years, also they keep using the word affordable without defining what it means, what I think is affordable might not be what you think is affordable. Point of fact I live in a rural area and I have very limited choices on broadband pricing they start at $45 per month for just 256kbps up to $399 per month for 5 mbps, by way of comparison I if I lived just 15 miles north I could get broadband through a cable company starting at just $20 per month and get 1mbps.
Goal 2 is something entirely different, first there is a big difference between broadband and wireless, from reading the report this goal is setting up the ending of the PSTN network for phones, AT&T is already asking to be let out from under there obligations to continue to maintain the old wired phone network because they “can’t make money at it” but as most things you need to look at their SEC filings to see they are lying about that. In 2009 AT&T made a $123 billion, the wire line business made $66 billion and that was $12 billion more than their wireless business, but the wireless side has less restrictions and higher profit margins. The FCC even admits that a full 20% of American household still get there only phone service through the PSTN that amounts to over 60 million people that will have to go to cell phones if that network is ended, just think about moving from analog TV to digital and you know what I mean.
Goal 3 is what I call a filler goal, if you can’t access and use a computer now in 10 years you will most likely be dead, meaning that the only person I know that can’t use the internet are my grandmother and she is turning 90 this year, while I hope she lives for another 10 years even if she does she will still not use a computer. Once again they use the word affordable and do not define it.
Goal 4: This one I like a lot, but once again it falls short, there is no reason we could not be close to this goal now.

Goal 5: I thought that his one was already on the books, after 9/11 we put billions into first responder systems, so why didn’t we think ahead and upgrade the whole system, oh that’s right repugs were in charge.
Goal 6: This one is just a token BS goal, I am a green person and I don’t care about this. Every report now a day has to have its Green Energy part and it is not needed here.
Ok so to the headline is this plan a fraud or a first step, I think that question will be answered by the way they go about implementing the plan if they just give tax incentives to AT&T , Qwest , Verizon or other big companies to make it happen through the “free market” it is a fraud, but if the government comes through and takes the hands on approach and does a real bidding for contract process and then punishes contractors if they don’t me there goals and does a “STRONG” regulation package then this is a first step, but in the long run if they really want to lead the rest of the world on this they need to do it in less than 5 years. Make this part of a new Public works program to rebuild our countries infrastructure.
I can get behind that.

Monday, March 15, 2010

On The Left Episode 4

This week we have Headlines from Mike and Matthew talks about the attack on Dennis Kucinich by DailyKos founder Marko Moulitsas.

Welcome and thank you mike for headlines this week, I will be talking this week about one to the stories mike talked about in headlines, Marko Moulitsas’s attack on Dennis Kucinich. Let’s start out by pointing to a few facts,marko’s does not represent the whole liberal blogosphere, he represents DailyKos, and that is it, while I like reading his blog and the others that are posted there, he has an annoying habit of being a cheerleader instead of an independent voice, he has hitched his ride to the Dems and most of all President Obama. Over the last 4 to 5 years he has become part of the Washington media and seems to think he knows what everyone left of center is thinking. He does not.
Ok we need to start with the fact that Marko has what I would call a Personal hatred for Dennis Kucinich, he has written many a post called “Why “I” Hate Dennis Kucinich” when you make a statement like that you are showing your personal bias on a subject and everything you say about that subject should be viewed through that biased lens.
In everything he writes or talks about Kucinich he brings up this nearly every cycle Presidential runs, saying” Kucinich has never proven broad electoral viability” well that might be true I the eyes of marko’s but he has at least run for something, Marko has never attempted anything like that, im sure it’s because he knows “he does not have broad electoral viability even to win a house seat. Marko always points out that Kucinich was very anti-choice but now he is Pro-Choice, ok so he changed his mind, isn’t that something you want from a Politian, if his constituents are Pro-choice but he is not, shouldn’t he vote the way the people that elected him want, what is wrong with that. That’s what we say we want out of our representatives.
Now, Obama gave into Blanch Lincoln and Evan Bye and that idiot from Montana Max Baucus and they started with a compromised bill that was in the center and then moved farther to the right, so I have to ask people like marko who calls himself a Progressive, what did he get out of this bill, yes it will cover 15 to 20 million more people, but cover is not the right word, it will force these people to by insurance from private companies and then they will get a subsidy to “help” pay for it. that is quite different from covering people, next in this bill you will be pentilize for not buy insurance, is marko for that, he says he is not,ok, this bill does nothing to hold down cost, even the cbo has said it will raise the cost of premiums but that cost will be offset by subsidies’. Yes it will end resisanons and will end pre-existing conditions, but everyone says they are for those two things. So why did we not start with single payer and then make the compromise the public option, it’s because Obama and people like Marko have no real spine.

Monday, March 8, 2010

On The Left Episode 3

This week we will be talking about the financial crisis. I will be playing clips from an interview with Naomi Klein, a Clip from The Young Turks were Cenk interviews Michael Moore, we will listen in on an interview from Democracy Now between Amy Goodman and Eliot Spitzer and I will round off the show with some words of wisdom from none other than Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Oct 31 1936 speech at Madison Square Garden
Enjoy the show:

Let’s talk about financial matters today, first the numbers, unemployment, we lost another 36,000 jobs and our unemployment rate held steady at 9.7%. We need to remember that America has to create 100,000-130,000 new jobs per month to keep up with population growth.
On March 5 the Bureau of Labor Statistics released the February non-farm payrolls report. The civilian labor force participation rate is at 64.8%. This tells us that less than two thirds of the population is in the labor force- Employed or unemployed. The U-6 broad measure of unemployment that includes involuntary part time workers and those marginally attached to the labor force, rose to 16.8% this number remains painfully high and suggests widespread economic suffering. 41% of the unemployed have been out of work for at least 27 weeks.
Productivity has been growing very rapidly since the recession began in late 2007.from the fourth quarter of 2008 to the fourth quarter of 2009 productivity increased 5.8 percent, as output declined 0.2 percent and hours fell 5.7 percent, making worker work harder and work less hours. Corporations save on wages and hours while getting more goods and services produced by existing workers who are afraid to lose there jobs. We are also seeing the most disproportional relationship between output, hours and pay recorded in the last 62 years. Output per worker hour is surging. Pay and employment is not. This helps explain how we are seeing rising profits and GDP with no improvement in employment. And why there is a sharp divergence between corporate profits and employment conditions.
I know at least 30 people personally that have been laid off in the last six months.
Next in Dec 2009 the FDIC listed 702 banks on its Problem list that was up from 552 three months earlier.
140 bank failures in 2009 was the highest annual tally since 1992, which was at the height of the savings and loans crisis. By way of comparison there were just 25 bank failures in 2008 and 3 in 2007.
Next on to Taxes the IRS has once again started to release the yearly report of the top 400 earners, this report was first made public in 1992 by the Clinton administration, but the George w bush administration shut down access to the report. Its release was resumed a year ago when Obama took office and boy we can now see why the Bushies did not what this getting out.
In 2007 the top 400’s average income of 344.8 million was up 31% from 2006’s average of 263.3 million, now that was the Average number. Now once again these are that the IRS put in to the report. now the tax rate for this group fell from 2006 to 2007 from 17.17% to 16.62%, that rate is lower than the typical effective income tax rate paid by Americans with incomes in the low six figures so over $100,000.
Tax payers on the 95th and 99th steps of the income ladder paid an effective rate of 17.52% .The taxpayers in this category made between 255,000 to 451,000 per year in 2007, compared with a DAILY Average income of almost 945,000 for the top 400, that is 945,000 per day.
The top 400 saw an increase in their incomes of 27 percent or 9 times that of the bottom 90% of earners.
Since 1992 the bottom 90% has seen an increase of 13% compared with 399% for the top while you who make 25,000 to 100,000 pay 20 to 33 percent tax rates these guys are paying just 17% but that is only on their income, the biggest source of income was from capital gains which is taxed at a Maximum rate of just 15%, Now do you see where the Bush Tax cuts and the “Death Tax” really went.
This is the most telling part I think , in 2007 the pre-tax income for a family of four was 50,233,while the top 400 households earned a median of 345 million, almost 6900 times as much income. In contract in 1992 the ratio was just a sixth as large, with the top 400 household having 1124 times as much, still way out of whack but closer by a long shot.

Friday, March 5, 2010

On The Left Episode 2

This week we will be talking about Heath care. We will have clips from The Young Turks,
The Rachel Maddow show ,C-Span and we will have audio from a local meeting on health care by Al Franken.
The Main problem with the current bills in Congress is they don’t do what is needed ,they take only one step down the road when we need to start running just to catch up to the rest of the world.

Monday, March 1, 2010

On The Left Episode 1

This is the first podcast from the team of On The Left

Monday, February 15, 2010

Presidents' Day Salute:The Need To Channel Backbone And Spirit

(J.P.Morgan attacking photographers)

Of course, at the outset, I must admit that I hold no degree in history. I am by no means an expert on the subject. So, the following may be considered pure conjecture on my part. But, if there was ever a time in US history where integrity, truthfulness, forthright courage, and just plain intestinal fortitude were qualities so desperately needed to combat overwhelming forces of corporate-political graft, the overall perversion of our representative-social-democratic system wrought by massive, almost common-place, money-fueled influence peddling—while all of this being dangerously mixed with public ignorance and misguided anger fed by a corporate-controlled broadcast media—then I’m hard-pressed to come up with a comparison to what has transpired in the past 35 years. More specifically, coming up with a proper comparison to what has happened in the first decade, and continues seemingly unabated into the second decade of this new century, is a difficult task to perform in my little head.

Oh, one may tend to sight similarities to the days of the robber barons, while pointing out the oligarchic political shenanigans leading up to the Crash of ‘29’ and the first Republican Depression—and that would be a fair comparison. Integrity and courage were needed then, as well. Corruption and oligarchy were battled (or at least attempted to be curbed) legislatively with everything from measures like the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, an official Act which is still on the books, but goes unused and lies dormant like a traffic cop on valium, to the successful implementations of the New Deal. But, in this continuing post-New Deal era—arguably more so since the Reagan administration—where the corporate power elite, along with their right-wing hand maidens/enablers in Washington, have been busily dismantling every remedy applied during the past century, the situation seems bleaker. When you consider the disastrous ruling set forth last month in the case ‘Citizens United v Federal Elections Commission,’ made by a Supreme Court more stacked to the right than can be remembered in recent history, ‘dark’ is not a strong enough word to use when describing what democracy might look like in ten years.

It is with all of this in mind I present a few examples of courageous and outspoken presidential moments. Words pronounced in defiance and earnest, speaking truth to power…resolute and strong in times of deep trouble.

Yes. Some channeling of courage, spirit and intestinal fortitude is most desperately needed right now!



Democratic National Convention (June 27, 1936) - click to hear entire speech

"These economic royalists complain that we seek to overthrow the institutions of America. What they really complain of is that we seek to take away their power. Our allegiance to American institutions requires the overthrow of this kind of power. In vain they seek to hide behind the Flag and the Constitution. In their blindness they forget what the Flag and the Constitution stand for. Now, as always, they stand for democracy, not tyranny; for freedom, not subjection; and against a dictatorship by mob rule and the over-privileged alike."

"For twelve years this Nation was afflicted with hear-nothing, see-nothing, do-nothing Government. The Nation looked to Government but the Government looked away. Nine mocking years with the golden calf and three long years of the scourge! Nine crazy years at the ticker and three long years in the breadlines! Nine mad years of mirage and three long years of despair! Powerful influences strive today to restore that kind of government with its doctrine that that Government is best which is most indifferent."

"For nearly four years you have had an Administration which instead of twirling its thumbs has rolled up its sleeves. We will keep our sleeves rolled up.

"We had to struggle with the old enemies of peace—business and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering.

"They had begun to consider the Government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob.

"Never before in all our history have these forces been so united against one candidate as they stand today. They are unanimous in their hate for me—and I welcome their hatred.

"I should like to have it said of my first Administration that in it the forces of selfishness and of lust for power met their match. I should like to have it said of my second Administration that in it these forces met their master."

~FDR 1936~

JFK - In His Words (September 14, 1960)

"What do our opponents mean when they apply to us the label, “Liberal”? If by “Liberal” they mean, as they want people to believe, someone who is soft in his policies abroad, who is against local government, and who is unconcerned with the taxpayer's dollar, then the record of this party and its members demonstrate that we are not that kind of “Liberal.” But, if by a “Liberal,” they mean someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions, someone who cares about the welfare of the people - their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights, and their civil liberties - someone who believes that we can break through the stalemate and suspicions that grip us in our policies abroad, if that is what they mean by a “Liberal,” then I'm proud to say that I'm a “Liberal.”