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JDPriestly's Journal - Archives
Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Fri Nov 25th 2011, 12:02 PM
If a country's credit rating is downgraded and that country's cost of borrowing goes up, won't that country buy less from other countries?

Won't that kind of put the brakes on "free trade"?

Won't that mean less demand for commodities like oil? imported food?

Won't that mean more demand for domestic products and food?

Will this mean more deflation?

And won't an exporting nation like China that has geared its industry to make things like foreign flags and trinkets for foreign kids go into a tailspin?

Am I wrong?
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Sun Nov 20th 2011, 02:38 PM
Before I lived there, I had the impression that the German people had to be foolish or stupid or corrupt or hateful. I had seen all those traits in some of the most racist Southerners when I lived there.

But when I met German people, people who after I had known them a while, demonstrated or admitted that they had supported Hitler way back when, I learned that they were idealists, that they had believed in the value of the German culture and way of life. They were misled by the flattery of the NAZIs, by the sense of uniqueness that the NAZIs believed they had.

And underneath the entire NAZI system was the incredible corruption that can only exist in a society blinded by its absolute belief in its own purity, goodness and special destiny.

We are better because we are German.

The modern Germans do not have that naive trust in their own specialness, their own superiority. But some of the Germans I met who had been most vulnerable to German propaganda nostalgically expressed what they had felt, that naive conviction, during the NAZI era.

I once encountered a man (a leader in the culture of the town where I then lived) who preached to me, literally preached, the theories of the NAZIs about culture and religion all the way between Vienna and the town where we both lived.

I was shaking from fright when I got off the train. The fervor of this man, the absolute faith, the complete lack of questioning of of skepticism, were to me the marks of the NAZI fanatic.

That is why I am always encouraged when, on DU, people remind us to question our assumptions and beliefs. Questioning assumptions and beliefs, including the assumption that our country is not at all like NAZI Germany, is essential if we are to remain objective and protect our rights and our Constitution.
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Thu Nov 17th 2011, 03:28 AM
meetings if they wore so much as a tee-shirt that the Republican party bosses did not like.

That was the Bush administration Mike-Check. Just don't allow anyone who might voice an opinion other than your own into your show.

Rove, finally you, a chief Mike-Checker of the Bush administration, have been Mike-checked.

You and others in the Bush administration went so far to punish dissident opinions as to pass the Patriot Act and try to subpoena (or just demand) library records.

So, how does it feel to be the tiny minority not being given the freedom to speak?

Mike-check all Fascists. Thank you.
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Thu Nov 17th 2011, 02:47 AM
Zucotti Park is not Tianamen Square. No, indeed.

Ours is supposed to be a free country, not a Communist or Fascist dictatorship.

And, as Rumsfeld pointed out in April 2003, freedom can be "untidy."

OWS is very untidy, but that's freedom.

And freedom is not always hygienic or safe. It's freedom. It's risky. It's dirty. And it is free.

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Posted by JDPriestly in Latest Breaking News
Thu Nov 17th 2011, 02:21 AM
You mean like the mortgage companies and banks did not pay the fees required to record changes in the names of the the parties to the mortgages? That kind of not paying fees and permits.

The camping out represents a whole lot of things. And you have just put your finger on one of them.

Only little people have to pay the fees.

Our local and state governments would get a big boost in the budgets if the mortgage companies and banks repaid the money they owe for the recording fees that they did not pay on the mortgages they turned into derivatives.
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Posted by JDPriestly in Latest Breaking News
Thu Nov 17th 2011, 02:17 AM
in the capitol and lobby our representatives all day and then wine and dine and party with those same representatives at night.

The rich and their lobbyists are in a sense camping out in Congress.

That's what should not be allowed.

Camping in parks is does not cause nearly the problems that the camp-outs by lobbyists in our legislatures, governors' mansions and the direct participation of former members of companies like Morgan Stanley on the cabinet and staff or the President.

The halls of our capitols are occupied by big business. All that is left for the poor and middle class is to occupy Wall Street and parks and squares across the country.

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Posted by JDPriestly in Latest Breaking News
Thu Nov 17th 2011, 01:55 AM
is that, in the light of Citizens United and the role that money has played in determining whose speech is heard and whose is ignored, the only way to petition the government and to compete with the money of the 1% is to camp out in public parks and speak, discuss political ideas and live democracy in a public place.

So, the camping out actually is the free expression. It is a form of protest against the control by the wealthy few of political information and the process of political discussion in the US.

The Supreme Court and other courts will not "get it" right away, but eventually they probably will, assuming that what is left of our democracy, our representative government, survives the megalomania of the 1%, their desire for complete control of every aspect of our lives and our nation and their obsessive greed.

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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Wed Nov 16th 2011, 03:55 AM
The Constitution guaranteed the right to be silent to those accused of crimes, but The Supreme Court did not insure that right until its Miranda decision in 1966.

Similarly, the right to counsel in a criminal case was not guaranteed until the Supreme Court's decision in Gideon in 1963.

And most interestingly of all, the right to marriage was finally acknowledged in Loving v. Virginia in 1967.

And then, after who knows how many women died after illegal, sometimes self-induced, abortions, a woman's right to choose was established in Roe v. Wade in 1973.

These decisions did not just suddenly happen. The law inches forward.

The idea that the right to assemble peaceably might include the right to actually take over a square and establish a presence is a new one. It will take time. But i think that the time, place and manner restrictions on the exercise of free speech are just too extreme.
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Sun Nov 13th 2011, 03:11 PM
I received this e-mail from Don Siegelman yesterday:

First: Jack Abromoff, is validating what I have been saying for more than a decade!!!! Straight from the horse’s mouth: Abramoff confessed that he laundered $20 million dollars of gambling money through fake organizations to defeat me and my Education Lottery proposal and to elect my opponent Bob Riley.

Then they came after me using the wife of my opponent’s campaign manager( Karl Rove's best friend), the US Attorney to prosecute me. Everybody knows that ruining a political reputation is the cheapest and best campaign tool ever. Yes, taxpayers paid for that campaign tactic, too.

I have been saying this all along and now it is in print, straight from Jack Abramoff himself!

In his new book Jack Abramoff states that the number one problem he had to deal with in Alabama was me… Don Siegelman.

Sorry, I can't provide a link because this is from his e-mail.

He is going forward in his defense and pleased that history is showing just how right he was. He was viewed as enemy number one by the conservatives because he was electable.

DON SIEGELMAN NEEDS DONATIONS TO THIS DEFENSE FUND. So, if you can spare any money, please.

It is crucial that we support Siegelman and show Rove for what he really is before the next election.
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Sun Nov 13th 2011, 12:58 PM
and secret codes and secret communications and secret wiretaps and secret GPS and secret cameras and secret warrants and secret surveillance and top secret weapons and Secret Service and secret microphones and secret plans and secret phone calls and secret discussions and secret meetings and secret buildings and secret locations and secret reports and secret zones and secret prisons and secret planes and secret attacks and secret SEALS and secret missions and secret Patriot Act Provisions and secret rulings and secret memos and secret partners and secret negotiations and secret trade secrets and military secrets and foreign intelligence secrets and police secrets and national secrets and defense secrets.

We don't have a democratic government. We don't have a representative government.

We have a secret government.

We need to Occupy our own government and empty its pockets. Let's find out what's in all the secrets we've got hidden away.

Our houses, our streets, our parks, our schools, our police, our courts, our military, our government.

End secrecy in government.
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Thu Nov 10th 2011, 03:07 PM
either very funny or very offensive! It's your risk. I do not approve or disapprove. I just see it as an expression of justified anger.

And while you are there, read the other articles. But get your laughs first because the rest of the website will explain why the cartoons are there.
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Thu Nov 03rd 2011, 02:42 PM
With regard to the Patriot Act.

It is especially important that the government be prohibited from reading, eavesdropping or listening in on political communications by citizens of the US.

It is also imperative that the government be prohibited from reading, eavesdropping or listening in on attorney-client privileged communications. The streaming of internet communications, wiretapping without a specific warrant, etc., of American citizens in and out of the country is a clear violation of the Fourth Amendment.

My political speech is none of the US government's business even though it is absolutely harmless and supportive of the Constitution and everything our Forefathers fought for. It's the principle of the thing.

My ancestors who fought in the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812 and the Civil War among others did not fight for Homeland Security or for their own safety.

They risked their safety, their lives to fight for the ideals of freedom, independence, respect for every human being, the right to vote in free elections, the end of slavery, a fair tax system, a fair chance for all, and against aristocracy, plutocracy and monopolies.

They were all immigrants, albeit long ago. Theirs is the America that I believe in. They are the reason I am on DU.

I have the right to speak my mind and share my thoughts without government surveillance. So do all peaceful citizens.
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Fri Oct 28th 2011, 09:01 AM
Peter Schiff recently came to OWS and claimed that he pays 50% of his income in taxes.

Let's ask him to meet the Warren Buffet challenge and release his tax returns for as many years as Buffet did.

If his claim that he pays 50% of his income in taxes is true, then he should be proud of those returns and want to demonstrate his solidarity with our country.

I would also like to ask all member of the 1% including Buffet and Schiff (assuming he really is in the 1%) to declare how much money they and the companies in which they invest donate to political campaigns and causes.

The public reporting of campaign donations reflects those made directly to campaigns and not the considerable amounts spent on personal lobbying, trade organization support for representation to the governments at different levels and direct issue-related advertising.
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Posted by JDPriestly in Editorials & Other Articles
Tue Oct 25th 2011, 03:57 PM
to make things.

If you fail to think critically as you cut out a piece of fabric for a dress or skirt, you end up with a lot of pieces that do not fit together. You have to think at each step, "What will be the result if I do this as I am doing it? What could go wrong? Could I end up with four front panels for my pants? How can I make sure that the floral pattern matches and looks continuous across the seat of my pants?"

You learn critical thinking first by working with concrete objects.

I am watching my little 11-month-old grandson as he discovers things and the world of language. He learned a couple of words. He was praised. Now, he watches and listens as people talk and repeats as much as he possibly can of what he hears. Sometimes, he can't catch the individual words, so he imitates the overall "musical" sound of the language.

Working with things, working with sounds and with pictures -- manual arts and sewing -- music -- and art -- are the ways that we improve our language and other skills.

We need more arts, music, real experiences in our schools. It is no coincidence that the deterioration in academic standards coincided with the reduction in our arts programs beginning in the mid- to late-sixties.

Above all, we do not learn to write and think for ourselves solely from reading the writings and thoughts of others. We learn to think creatively and independently by grappling with our own reality which includes everything we do, see, touch, smell and hear.
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Posted by JDPriestly in General Discussion
Fri Oct 14th 2011, 03:54 AM
You will win through nonviolence. You will lose if you become angry or impassioned. Stay cool. Relax. You are on the winning side.

Breathe deeply and forget anger. Real courage is not red-hot. It is quietly determined.
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