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Left Coast2020's Journal - Archives
Posted by Left Coast2020 in Religion/Theology
Sun Nov 13th 2011, 01:40 PM
I'm saving this as a personal reminder to any arguement that I hear claiming this is a christan nation.


Whose Motto Is “In God We Trust”?
Thomas A. Foster - November 10, 2011 12:45 pm


Cross-posted from History News Network


Last week Congress voted to reaffirm that the national motto of the United States is “In God We Trust.” Representative Randy Forbes (R-VA) introduced the measure and argued that we would be following “our predecessors” by declaring a national trust in God. Last year he and the Congressional Prayer Caucus had criticized President Obama when he “falsely proclaimed” in a speech in Jakarta that “E Pluribus Unum” is the national motto.

The conservatives who criticized Obama and who claim the mantle of the founding fathers are mistaken on both counts. Although “In God We Trust” is the official motto, “E Pluribus Unum” has long been acknowledged as a de facto national motto. After all, it is on the Great Seal of the United States, which was adopted in 1782. Moreover, in the 1770s and ’80s Congress opposed a theistic motto for the nation, and many of the founders worked hard to prevent one from being established.

In July 1776, almost immediately after signing the Declaration of Independence, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson were tasked with designing a seal and motto for the new nation. In August John Adams wrote to his wife, Abigail, that he had proposed the “Choice of Hercules” as the image for the seal. Adams believed that individuals should choose to lead moral personal lives and to devote themselves to civic duty, and he preferred a secular allegory for that lesson.

The other two committee members proposed images that drew on Old Testament teachings, but neither shared the beliefs of those today who assert the role of God in our national government. Benjamin Franklin, a deist who did not believe in the divinity of Christ, proposed “Moses lifting up his Wand, and dividing the Red Sea, and Pharaoh, in his Chariot overwhelmed with the Waters.” This motto, he believed, captured the principle that “Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God.” .................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.dissentmagazine.org/atw.php?id=...
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in Economy
Sun Nov 06th 2011, 09:36 PM
The economic disparity between the U.S. and China is so wide you could drive a 10-ton asteroid through it. It is known that a large percentage of products are made in China and other Asian countries. But there is one tid-bit in all of the discussions I've heard or read that is not mentioned in the MSM: China needs the U.S. as one of its markets.

Putting all of the talk about how China has become "our bank", China still depends on the American purchase of its manufactured goods. There are not many other countries China can rely on. Although they are expanding their reach in off-shore oil production by an agreement with West African countries for permits and contracts.

American companies are pulling out (to some extent) from cheap labor in Asia due to rising costs in that country. Housing is becoming un affordable in the northern Liaoning Province. Beijing? Forget it.Shanghai? No way. These are two of the most expensive cities in the country. Shenyang, where I spent the last 4 years, is where BMW has set up shop, as well as Michellin. But the biggest bummer of it all is the Buick plant west side of the city. If the cost of producing a product is increasing in China, it would make more sense to bring those jobs back to Lansing MI.

If there was a Congress that said no to the unfair trade policies that exist currently through a series of tariffs on imported products, China could only just complain. China knows that this is its business partner--the U.S.A. It would be uncertain what actions China would retaliate with, but personally, I don't believe it would be an all out trade war. It would be an overdue action for Congress to act American for once and tackle the issue of higher tariffs on Chinese products. That is the true way to bring back our economy to better footing than it is today.
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Sat Apr 10th 2010, 04:46 PM
After one friggin year-plus of being out of work, I received a call an hour ago from a large chain hotel and invited to start orientation tomorrow!! Not my career job, but a future paycheck to pay bills. I am in utter shock. A year ago, I was working in China as a teacher (ESL) for Chinese students. Since returning I have looked high and low at anything fitting my qualifications...nada. I was getting desperate. My self esteem was really getting near the end. I'll tell you honestly, I was really feeling the end was near. I wanted to go back to China since I still have connections there to go and teach again. But no money for air fare--plus I'm two hours from SFO--don't know anyone who could take me to airport. But now I can say wow. I hope this job works till august. I'm going back to school for teaching degree program---second run at education. Don't how to say it. Your mental state goes from 0 to 10 in a matter of seconds at that phrase, "can you start orientation tomorrow?" I hope several thousand of you can hear the same phrase. Its a wonderful feeling!!!
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Thu Dec 10th 2009, 02:21 AM
CALL YOUR SENATORS TODAY!

A new report, Health Care Reform and Walmart: What the Senate Health Care Reform Bill Means to the Country’s Largest Employer, outlines how that the Senate Health Care Bill, as written, fails to hold Walmart responsible for the health care costs of its 1.4 million employees.

The report examines the Senate bill by looking at its impact on America’s largest and most irresponsible private employer. As written, the employer responsibility provision—“Free Rider”—would provide no overall health care cost savings because it would:

•Provide little or no incentive for Walmart to provide insurance to more workers or provide better care to its workers;
•Continue the dependence of tens of thousands of Walmart employees and their families on federal and state subsidies for Medicaid and SCHIP, and encourage Walmart to have even more workers and their families dependent on these taxpayer-funded programs;
•Make few, if any, Walmart workers eligible for tax credits to purchase better insurance through the health insurance exchange;
•Force low-income Walmart workers into high-deductible, company-provided insurance;
•Incentivize the hiring of a largely part-time workforce, and encourage reducing workers’ hours as a way to reduce health care costs.

http://www.fixthebill.org /

It really saddens me to know what employee's of this poor example of a retail organization have to go through. Our counties/local governmanets have to subsidize health insurance for the workers of this company. Such a tragedy.
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in Latest Breaking News
Mon Feb 16th 2009, 11:34 PM
But I just returned from China last month. I was there 3 months and saw a Buick plant...BIG plant. New cars parked across street just waiting for freight truck to carry them out.

And we sell our used materials too. This really pisses me off. This is recycled material we need for our production purposes. They sell it right back to us, but at inflated price. Are we stupid or what?

And waht about the local "machine shop?" Where did those go?
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in Editorials & Other Articles
Mon Feb 02nd 2009, 09:12 PM
You may be able to have your debt reorganized with card companies, but as one who had to borrow for college, mine are not dischargable--according to a bankruptcy attorney I talked to last week. But it is agreed, the entire bankruptcy law needs to be overhauled. Thats why I get so f'ing depressed that this country does not seem to have the interest and take to the streets on these matters--as they do in France. Think of what kind of impact we could have if millions of people always took to the streets. Do we really want these laws changed? Apparently not. We seem to enjoy a political form of S&M I guess.

I don't know if other people can view my journal, but if you can, see, "....Lets go back to the 90's....." I wrote about an action France took to protest a wage or retirement issue. But in short, we can take to the streets. Bush is gone. Its a different ballgame. We can demand what kind of government we want. If we don't, then we have no reason to complain.
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in Editorials & Other Articles
Sun Feb 01st 2009, 09:43 PM
Saipan. Its in the Marianna's Islands--just east of the Philippines. Beautiful place for a get-a-way--very tropical and hot, but the Gap, and Tommy Hilfiingr sweatshops are there. My hotel was located just across the street from this monstrous looking facility. Only thing is it resembles a WWII prison camp with (I'm not kidding here people) barbed-wire fence, and rippled sheet metal around perimeter of fence. The young girls who are bussed in-out every few minutes look like they are no older than 15-16. And since it is an American "territory", the label of clothes made can say, "Made in USA". But wages are not managed like they are here. No workers rights, no fair wage law, and by no means, no union representation. Yes, this is the same Saipan where Delay went to deal with island representatives to get contributions for his PAC. I have been there twice because thats where I got married in 2001. It also has a lot of
WWII history too. But to see these girls going in and out of this facility is saddening.
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in Latest Breaking News
Thu Jan 29th 2009, 12:55 AM
stood up for their rights. I was looking for some ambient text to support this historical review of French laborical attitudes. But nonetheless, some of you may remember when french truck drivers were ticked about wages or some other important issue. I have somewhat of a vivid memory of this because I was working in a television station at the time. The drivers apparently got nowhere with whoever it was they were negotiating with, so what did they do? They shut down Paris. Yes they did. For the entire duration of their protest, they parked trucks all over the friggin place. On the side of the street. In the middle of the street. everywhere you looked, trucks blocked every intersection in Paris--for about a week or two if memory serves me correct. It was amazing. They completely shut down a good portion of the city to protest their "pissed-offness" in public. Now you ask, what happened? Well, after about a week or so of having their trucks parked all over the city blocking traffic and creating a commuting nightmare, those in charge of the drivers conceded and gave them what they wanted. Strike ended, and everyone went home happy.

Moral of this story: I guess we take a page out their playbook at some point in time. Although, I'm not sure when that is to occur. Perhaps I should ask a question for those of us to ponder: when are we going to stop acting like a damn punching bag on labor, health-care, or constitutional matters and standup to these corporate buttheads? Thats what I thought.

:fistbump:
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in Editorials & Other Articles
Thu Jan 22nd 2009, 02:38 AM
I was surprised the internet was not blocking U.S. news. But I watched CNN for about 4 hours in internet bar (called "wongba") because this election was big to me.

Unfortunately, there is a segment of the Chinese population that is illiterate and cannot speak or read english that well. How do I know? I was there as an ESL teacher (English as Second Language).

I lived in Shen Yang which is north of Beijing and west of North Korean Peninsula. I was, however, tickeled when I held Q & A after a class and a student asked me (in english) if I voted for Obama. The majority of the students I worked with like Obama. They know what is going on in the world. They dispised Bush. I enjoy teaching. Its what I thrive on. Unfortunately, I had to come home sooner than planned because of unexpected matters. But all I can say is the students, in my opinion, are smarter than most people think--especially the younger generation. If a chinese student makes it to a university (ShenYang University or Liaoning University), they will have greater success in english abilities. Not only that, they will have better opportunity to immigrate to U.S or any other english speaking country. The population that is uneducated, are the people who suffer from lack of information outside China. I think when I watched some of the local news that Obama won election, it seemed like it was only a few seconds and then on to next story. It is my hope that the younger generation gain strength and become a larger influence in China. That is my wish.
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in Editorials & Other Articles
Wed Jan 21st 2009, 01:07 AM
But my concern is who is the next neo-con to retire? I'm not sure there is one. Any legal scholars in the house?


Stevens is 80-something and he has hinted at retiring due to health reasons. But from what I have seen over the last several years, he has been a major swing vote for the Constitution. All the other brain-dead nuts vote for business (Does Lilly-Ledbetter case ring a bell)? Thomas, Scalila, Roberts, Alito, and I'm missing one. But having said that, speculation is there will be 2 vacancies on the bench. I believe Kennedy is the other who news reports speculate will retire. Kennedy has been a big vote for the people. I'm still a bit worried as to if the retirments are people we would like to see step down (one would be Thomas).

Does anyone know the status of what the SC situation is currently?

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Posted by Left Coast2020 in Latest Breaking News
Mon Jan 19th 2009, 01:42 PM
This is awsome information. Thank you. Absofriging-loutely! This is, or has been my mantra for the past few years. Sallie-Mae, which is a major lender for student-loans, simply crushes those of us who have struggled to get out from a heavy debt-load. When did I finish college? 1995. I started in 89 in community college and progeressed from there. I was not of "standard" college age. I went back to school as non-traditional student--in my 30's. I returned because I thought it would lead to a better opportunity. Or, better yet, make me look more appealing to prospective employers. I thought it had a "label" of some special meaning when printed on a resume.

I have written the Obama transition team on this at change.gov. I hope someone will get the message. I'm in the middle of deciding wheather or not I should file for bankruptcy because I can't afford to pay back any more--at this time. No job, savings depleted, and teaching job I had in China 2-years ago screwed me out of money that was promised to me on contract. Thats why I went there was to work so I could bring balance way down.

Paying money back and not getting ahead (interest only) can really bring you down. Its almost like going in circles or something.
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It was just a day or so ago he publicly came out and said "if Obama does not investigate, I will". Now I remember his name. Sheldon Whitehouse. Now thats what I call BOLD.

And you have to remember many people are putting pressure on Conyers to take action too. Conyers, if you remember, came out the other day (some thought he was grandstanding) calling for investigations. Some observers (myself included) wondered why did he wait until now to call for investigations? I have a lot of respect for Conyers, but I'm questioning his thinking at this point in time. So I'm remaining calm and somewhat hopeful that some unexpected news event will burn-up newsrooms across the country. And may I add that Obama's A.G. Eric Holder got an ear-full from, I think it was David Swanson from "Downing St.org" on this topic, and Holder responded, "I hear you" (story may be here from last weeks confirmation hearing, or something pertaining to that). So,to me, that says something. Holder is getting an earful too. In a news conference Obama responded on Holder's being A.G. and Bushes crimes "I will allow him him to make some calls" (as in the legal variety). I think Obama does not want to challenge Bush now because of the economy. But in due time, he will have to. Remember? He knows the Constitution.

The next few weeks will be interesting.

So the bottom line is, I'm reserving my emotions on what will be done to put these criminal freaks behind bars. I'm most curious how Sen. Whitehouse backs up his statement. We should hold him to it.
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Posted by Left Coast2020 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Sun Jan 18th 2009, 12:14 AM
Mike was in Sacramento a few years ago (04?) for a panel to impeach this miserable moron thats leaving. I was sitting outside near front door waiting to go in (I was there early to get a good seat) and this other dude was across the enternce near the door like I was. About 40-minutes before it started Mike walks up to front door. I instantly recognized him and said hello and shook his hand. The dude sitting across did not have a ticket to get in or the $10 to purchase a ticket. Mike told him, "hold on , I'll be right back". He went inside the theater to put his briefcase away, and let David Swanson (moderated panel) know he was there. A staff person opened the door for Mike as he came back outside, he reached into his pocket, and gave the dude across from me $10 so he could buy a ticket for the forum.

I kid you not!

Now how's that for a progressive talk-show host?

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