Foreigners Know Better Why Tuesday Happened

Pity that we ignored the outside world. We could have learned from them.

Ever since 1831, when Alexis de Tocqueville travelled across this flat earth to our hallowed shores and told us what he had discovered through his unique perspective, it has been useful to see ourselves through the eyes of an outsider. Sent here to study our prison system, he ended up studying us, analyzing both  our puritanical past and our heady, unique and fascinating future. That future, in large part, was based on a constitution that inspired millions here and abroad, from the very time that it was penned and voted into existence. Sadly, that document no longer works.

Part of his genius was seeing and recognizing the obvious, then describing it in ways that we could not ignore . . . Or deny.

de Tocqueville had this to say about the role of women here, in an awed and inspired manner:

“As for myself, I do not hesitate to avow that although the women of the United States are confined within the narrow circle of domestic life, and their situation is in some respects one of extreme dependence, I have nowhere seen women occupying a loftier position; and if I were asked, (…) to what the singular prosperity and growing strength of that people ought mainly to be attributed, I should reply,—to the superiority of their women.”

What an insight and what an analysis of our society back then.

While other countries copied some some of our democratic ideals, in many ways, they eclipsed them, having far greater numbers of women in office, and even as heads of state long before Shirley Chisolm became the first woman to seek the US Presidency.

By now it is routine for women to sit in the House, the Senate, many governor’s offices, and almost without notice or comment about their sex, as mayors and local and state  politicians. We must admit that Shirley never had a chance. Since her efforts (as well as Gerri  Ferraro’s as VP) we were never given another opportunity by the powers that be. Part of that is intentional, part of the is structural  and part of that is by unfortunate design.

Part of the problem with our current constitutional design  is that it is not capable of being repaired, not without wholesale changes. And we are incapable of positive change. Only destruction looms ahead.

THE TWO PARTY SYSTEM IS A MESS

The basic  framework of our political system is mess, doomed to failure. No two party system could ever function adequately in a country that sports 320,000,000 people, with 11-15,000,000 of them here without documentation. The broad, often conflicting range of interests is simply too huge and complex  to be effectively dealt with by any two party system, no matter how hard they try. When they try. Or more to the point, if they even bother to try.

There was little of such effort visible over the last eight years. That bald, disgusting fact became the norm when Mitch McConnell promised that his only goal was to make Obama a one term president. It was stunning when he said that. But the reaction was even worse. The lack of outrage among democrats, republicans, indies, and of course, the MSM, is partly why our country is doomed to fail.

NO 100 MEMBER SENATE CAN FUNCTION TODAY

Add to that, our basic political structure is unworkable. 100 senators for  country of 320,000,000? No founding father ever anticipated such a disaster. Certainly they never intended that those 100 would wield so much latent, even covert power. Those same brilliant founding fathers, well, most of them, hated the idea of political parties. They viewed political parties, correctly as it turns out, as a potential cyst on the nation’s anus.

Yet, by limiting ourselves, unrealistically, to having a senator from North Dakota have as much influence as a senator who has New York City, Chicago, or LA as part of his/her territory, we have effectively closed off the senate from the people, and turned it into a millionaire’s club that works rarely, if ever, in cooperating on a pressing issue (Zika? Aids? Global climate change) except when it can magnify its own power and reap the resulting riches. Only then do most of the 100 mini-tsars cooperate while a few complainers see the money grab (regardless of the subject) for what it is. Today, Bernie Sander, Elizabeth Warren and a couple of ultra-conservative GOPers have the gall to complain and point out the problem, even though the larger issue continues to elude them.

Here is a pop quiz. Name one senator who left the senate as poor or poorer than when he/she first arrived. Name one. Just one. Or look west, young man, look west. Democratic Senator DiFi may not have been openly bribed, but her family certainly profited greatly by stuffing their maws at the public trough.

I cannot think of one senator  in modern times who is not better off financially by the time she /he leaves office. To our chagrin, and to the loss of the nation.

If you do not believe that our senatorial system is totally fucked, just look at the 8 member Supreme Court.

 A 435 MEMBER HOUSE CAN NEVER FUNCTION USEFULLY FOR A COUNTRY THIS SIZE

The House. Today, it brings images of John Belushi in a toga. But the real thing is even worse. 435 individuals, dedicated to raise funds to insure their own re-election, who toil each and every day begging for campaign donations, and whose members only spend 3-4 days actually in session  during  those rare weeks when they even bother to be in town, have control over our country. Every Thursday they rush to local airport so they can fly home to raise more funds. No, not every thursday. They are only in DC for 15-18 weeks to begin with. Unless there are parties and fundraisers to attend. Corrected, it should read, “Every Thursday when they bother to be in DC, they rush to fly  home in order to raise more campaign funds.” That is their normal life cycle. That is what they do. That is who they are.

435 people, intent on begging money from potential puppet masters in order to maintain their offices (and the power that attaches to it). It is not unfair to claim that all 435 of them spent far more time begging lobbyists and billionaires on their knees over the last eight years, than they ever did legislating.

The most democratic country in the world? US? The US and A? Seriously? Who are we kidding? There is absolutly no bloody way that any one congresscritter could ever fully represent 735,000 individuals with varied interests, needs, and ideas. Even worse, when bad ideas become popular, and result in the election  of  the inane TeaBuggerers, it causes even more sand to be spilled into the already creaky gears of government. Even when a exceedingly rare, supreme,  brave  effort to face a problem squarely does take place,  a small group of Ayn Rand devotees manage to strangle any good idea that might bubble up through that mess, having a Vulcan death grip over our entire political process. Our system was never designed to deal with a mindless, childish, and deliberate effort to destroy our Federal government. Yet that is what unfettered TeaBuggery has brought us, a small, unpopular minority holding the rest of the House, and as a result, the country, hostage.

THE GENIUS OF TEH DONALD

You have to admit that for all his obvious personal . . .  distractions, Donald Trump was smart enough to diagnose the problem. Not only was our system irretrievably broken, the general population was mad, very mad. Insecure financially, tired physically, and unable to trust anything that was coming out of D.C. He saw and diagnosed that anger, and pounced on it.

He took advantage of his insights and understanding, and played his GOP opponents like fools. He beat them in ways they never imagined, and he destroyed their party, even thought they may not recognize it just yet. Funny thing, despite his surprising success, his true message was ignored by the Hillarians. Trump took the identical tactics and  did it a second time, using an ossified, top heavy, elitist DNC and insular, vile, undemocratic party structure against Hillary, at the very time that she relied on just that very structure to bulldoze her own opponents  and insure that she and only she would or could be the nominee.

THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY IS FATALLY ILL. SUPERDELEGATES? WTF? 

The DNC is a major villain in this mess. As is the insular party structure. Many people complained, even here, and those many, many voices were shut down, ignored, berated, even kicked out. Debbie whatshername Schultz? She was no loyal democrat working for the people of this country thru the DNC. She was and is a political hack intent on controlling the result at all costs. Donna Brazile is even worse, now that we know that she cheated to help Hillary in a debate. But her goals were identical to Debbie’s and Hillary’s — anoint Hillary as the chosen one no matter what. No matter what the facts on the ground or in emails were. No matter that a majority of American cannot stand her.

Forget about the complaints. Ignore those who tried to warn the party. Insult them as sexists, when the reality was that her problems were largely self made, and that the candidate was immune to learning from or reacting to serious, factual criticisms.

Between the major two party inherent design flaw, and angry, upset, insecure, and untrusting voting public, and the glossed over weakness . . . Nay, weaknesses of the democratic nominee, and you had a situation ripe for surprise, even disaster.

And that is what we reaped on Tuesday.

OTHERS DIAGNOSED BETTER THAN WE

The BBC, or the Beebs, as some call it, had this to say:

Hillary Clinton has long had a trust problem, which is why the email scandal loomed so large. She had an authenticity problem. She was seen as the high priestess of an east coast elite that looked down, sneeringly, on working people.  The vast riches that the Clintons accumulated since leaving the White House did not help. The former first couple were seen not just as limousine liberals but Lear Jet liberals.

Again, their wealth exacerbated her problems with working class voters, even though they happily voted for a property tycoon.  In a country where millions more women vote than men, it was thought that her gender would give her a major advantage. But what became clear in the primaries against her rival Bernie Sanders was how hard she found it to enthuse young women voters especially about electing the country’s first female president, and shattering the most resilient glass ceiling in global politics.

The Guardian is no less aware of what happened:

There are few places where the political landscape is turning to quicksand as quickly as McDowell, the poorest county in West Virginia.

A forlorn place dotted with shuttered coalmines and abandoned homes, McDowell was once a Democratic heartland but is quickly shifting allegiance – Barack Obama won there in 2008, but Mitt Romney took it by a wide margin in 2012.

This year, it was the county in which Trump won his highest percentage of primary votes. There are more than 3,000 counties in the US – none voted for Trump as overwhelmingly as McDowell, where he secured 91.5% of the vote.

How can it be that a tax-avoiding billionaire who flies around in a gold-plated private jet is most popular in a place where more than half the population lives off donations from a food bank?

Le Monde had a sense of what was boiling over on this side of the Pond, even before Tuesday.

But there’s more to it in this election: a feeling that crosses party divisions, an anger expressed in the primaries by the 12 million people who voted for Senator Bernie Sanders and the 13.3 million supporters of Republican billionaire Donald Trump. They reckoned the system is rigged because politicians, both Republicans and Democrats, have launched wars in the Middle East that have impoverished the US without bringing victory. Rigged, because a majority of the population continues to pay for the consequences of an economic crisis that has cost those who caused it nothing. Rigged, because President Obama has disappointed the huge hopes of change generated by his 2008 campaign. Rigged, because Republican voters saw little difference after they mobilised to take control of the two Houses in Congress in 2010 and 2014. The system is rigged because nothing changes in Washington, because Americans feel dispossessed of their country by an oligarchy that holds them in contempt, because inequality grows and the middle class is beset by fear.

The election ostensibly began so well. On the Democrat side, Hillary Clinton’s party nomination was supposed to be a cakewalk, a dynastic succession power-assisted by Obama, but it turned into a struggle against a maverick septuagenarian, Sanders. He surprised everyone by successfully mobilising millions of voters among the young, the rural population and the working class with an anti-capitalist campaign. And money was no obstacle: he raised huge sums from millions of small donations, circumventing one of the most hated ways in which US politics is rigged (2). This surprising outcome seemed all the more promising as Donald Trump also spent far less on his primary campaign than several of the Republican opponents he crushed.

The system is rigged? Of course it is. It was rigged by, for and for the sole benefit of maintaining the political power of those in charge. Both parties’ true leaders thought that they had it rigged to their benefit, and are now shocked that We, The People, don’t like that very much. More than anything, Tuesday was a protest vote against the status quo. And Trump was anything but status or quo, while Hillary represented the very worst of it.

Here we sit, scared of what will happen tomorrow. Paul Ryan has already promised to destroy the best run, most efficient method of providing health care for the elderly and infirm. Medicare is gone, to be trashed on the ash heap of what we once knew as Obamacare. Vouchers? Private insurers? Oh my fucking nasty god. Yeah, that will be an improvement. I cry at the damage that maniac will create. I cry for the elderly who will forgo care, because it will no longer be available to them. I cry for the kids, whose sick parents will go untreated, lose their jobs as a result, and who will become homeless. The Tent Cities of years past will be our future. Ryan will guarantee that. And trump promised to help.

So, in summary, this was what America faced on Tuesday. A sexist, racist, groping, used car lot employee turned carnival barker, who has done little in life but promote himself, often at the expense of others. No political experience. No administrative experience. Experienced only in litigation, given that he has created so much of it. But he correctly diagnosed this nation, its angry voters, and the many ills that our government has studiously ignored, (including both major parties) and capitalized on it. He won fair and square, just because we let him.

On the other side, an elite, experienced, extremely wealthy woman selling herself as one of the common people. Yeah, that will work, doncha think? The hatred that many felt and still feel towards her was not the result of some right wing conspiracy. She personally earned each and every bit of it. But our elite leaders knew best. Her chromosomal makeup, her experience, and her smarts would win over millions and win the election, except for that pesky million member voting block that refused to bring themselves to vote for her. It was not our fault for pointing it out. And I cannot blame hillary supporters for putting blinders on and refusing to recognize this fact — even today — an extremely large bloc of americans would never vote for her.

In one sense, and only one sense,  the election of Trump is a good thing. it will speed up the end of America as we know it. The destruction of our two party system, the eradication of the party elites (on both sides) that have done so much damage to the middle class and to the country, and a  federal government so unwieldy and so unworkable, that we were forced to create a giant administrative system to cover up its inherent weakness. All that will be gone, perhaps violently. The national wounds and structural weaknesses run so deep that incremental change is impossible, especially with the TeaBuggered hostage takers now firmly in control.

No, in order to save this country, we need to allow Trump, Ryan, McConnel,  ALEC, the Koch bros. and Steve Bannon destroy it first. Only then can we rebuild. Tis a pity that 320,000,000 will suffer so badly before that opportunity arises.

Yute in “Murrica

Some good news happening in the whirled. Apparently religiosity is getting its sorely earned position in this country.

 

Professor David Voas (UCL Institute of Education) said: “These declines aren’t happening fast, but the signs are now unmistakable. It has become clear that American religiosity has been declining for decades, and the decline is driven by the same dynamic of generational change that has driven religious decline across the developed world.”

The study examined US data from the General Social Survey (GSS), which is conducted every two years, and compared it with similarly broad data from Great Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The results show that people have slowly become less religious over time.

According to the study, 68% Americans aged 65 and over said they had no doubt God existed compared to 45% of young adults, aged 18-30. 41% of people 70 and older said they attend church services at least once a month, compared to 18% of people 60 and below.

– See more at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/news/news-articles/0316/100316-American-devotion-to-religion-is-waning#sthash.knlCcsy8.dpuf

Heh. About time, I say.

 

 

 

 

Is Bibi Netanyahu insane?

1553 – Volumes of Talmud are burned
1948 – Beersheba liberated by Israeli army
COINCIDENCE? I think NOT!

It was bad enough when he threw temper tantrums that threatened US-Israeli relations. His attacks on Obama would not have been tolerated if they came from any other leader and any other country. He tried to interfere with a presidential election, openly hoping the Romney would prevail. Most recently, he did everything in his power to screw up negotiations with Iran.

The flotsam and jetsam left in his path are considerable. Amazingly, he managed to top himself with what has to be the most idiotic performance yet. Perhaps he is trying to deflect from his doomed to fail moves in Gaza and the West Bank, as the death tolls spiral out of control. If so, his efforts are mind-numbing and jaw-dropping.

Not since Stalin rewrote USSR history books has there been such a perverse and boneheaded effort to ignore the past.

From the Church of Ineffable Stupidity:

A bit of history first.

Mohammed Effendi Amin el-Husseini was a Palestinian who was named the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem. In 1938-39, he led several anti-British protests and revolts. Seeing the the growing strife between England and Germany, it was easy for him to choose the latter as a potential ally.

In late 1941, he met with Adolf Hitler to seek his assistance in creating a Palestinian state.

As for the Nazis, here are dates, places, and vile historical facts:

In 1933, the Jewish population of Europe stood at over nine million. Most European Jews lived in countries that Nazi Germany would occupy or influence during World War II. By 1945, the Germans and their collaborators killed nearly two out of every three European Jews as part of the “Final Solution,” the Nazi policy to murder the Jews of Europe.Although Jews, whom the Nazis deemed a priority danger to Germany, were the primary victims of Nazi racism, other victims included some 200,000 Roma (Gypsies). At least 200,000 mentally or physically disabled patients, mainly Germans, living in institutional settings, were murdered in the so-called Euthanasia Program.

As Nazi tyranny spread across Europe, the Germans and their collaborators persecuted and murdered millions of other people. Between two and three million Soviet prisoners of war were murdered or died of starvation, disease, neglect, or maltreatment. The Germans targeted the non-Jewish Polish intelligentsia for killing, and deported millions of Polish and Soviet civilians for forced labor in Germany or in occupied Poland, where these individuals worked and often died under deplorable conditions.

Introduction to the Holocaust.The attacks, harassment, and eventual move to death camps started shortly after the Nazis took power in 1933, before the Grand Mufti held that title.

Bibi must be off his meds. Here is the Guardian reporting on what he said in advance to a trip to Germany:

The Israeli prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, has attracted a storm of criticism for an incendiary speech in which he accused the second world war Palestinian grand mufti of Jerusalem of having suggested the genocide of the Jews to Adolf Hitler.The comments in a speech to the World Zionist Congress in Jerusalem came in the context of the current violence between Israelis and Palestinians and were condemned by historians and the Israeli opposition leader Isaac Herzog for trivialising the Holocaust.

On the Palestinian side, senior official Saeb Erekat described the remarks as absolving Hitler.

In his speech, Netanyahu purported to describe a meeting between Haj Amin al-Husseini and Hitler in November 1941. “Hitler didn’t want to exterminate the Jews at the time, he wanted to expel the Jews. And Haj Amin al-Husseini went to Hitler and said: ‘If you expel them, they’ll all come here [to Palestine].’” According to Netanyahu, Hitler then asked: “What should I do with them?” and the mufti replied: “Burn them.”

The GuardianWhat on this flat earth is going on in his head? The Final Solution started long before the Grand Mufti’s visit in 1941. Given his ever more erratic behavior, I wonder if he has some undisclosed mental issue going on. Because what he is saying is just plain nuts.

Given his recent history and ever more wild statements, it should give anyone pause that he is in control over nuclear weapons. Here is what the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists says about Israeli nukes:

Although the Israeli government neither confirms nor denies that it possesses nuclear weapons, it is generally accepted by friend and foe alike that Israel is a nuclear-armed state—and has been so for nearly half a century. The basis for this conclusion has been strengthened significantly since our previous estimate in 2002, particularly thanks to new documents obtained by scholars under the US Freedom of Information Act and other openly available sources. 1 We conclude that many of the public claims about the size of the Israeli nuclear arsenal are exaggerated. We estimate that Israel has a stockpile of approximately 80 nuclear warheads for delivery by two dozen missiles, a couple of squadrons of aircraft, and perhaps a small number of sea-launched cruise missiles. – See more at: http://thebulletin.org/…

80+ nuclear weapons in the hands of a madman. Talk about scary. Given that Bibi’s daddy was a reknown historian and scholar, Bibi’s words are even weirder and more disturbing. I don’t know much about Israeli political mechanisms, but is there a way to remove a sitting prime minister because of a mental breakdown without holding a new election?

military, war, sports,

I had just walked puppy to our normal frisbee and tennis ball park when we saw a large fair at one of the three churches within spitting distance of the home. People walking there invited us in, dog and all, so we entered. Midddle eastern music, some Christian, some Muslim, and some agnostics like us mingled and enjoyed the sights, sounds, and smells. Kids, both Muslim and not, asked parents to ask me if they could pet my 95 Lb baby. She loved it, as did the many, many kids who dared touch a large black puppy. Baby also met two camels (for kiddie rides) and touched noses with both.

Satisfied with our to-go meal purchases, all middle eastern fare, we headed home and turned on the T&V. Honey is a far more informed and excited futbol fan than I.

We turned on the futbol game involving the Chicago Bares, and the first thing we see is a playing field size US flag, held by tons of military in uniform, and some piss poor singer doing the national anthem. The corroded penny dropped. It hit me like a sledge I use when blacksmithing. It was all in your face propaganda. Tax dollars paying for a military presence and military ads, enriching TV stations and networks, as well as football team owners.

The subtle militarization of pro sports isn’t so subtle anymore.

The advertising revenue spent by the military (your tax dollars at work) on the NFL alone, totals many millions per year. Tell me, please, why is there a need to do a PR job (for big bucks) for the military? What national security purpose is served by spending millions that enrich tv networks and billionaire team owners?

I say enough of this crap. It is propaganda, pure and simple, a steady Chinese water torture of smiling military, injured military,  football playing military, followed by military ads, and the commentators making sure to mention the . . . Military. Plus ads by military suppliers. Promoting our military.

From the church of ineffable stupidity:

I may take some flak for this, but I am sick and tired even the national anthem being sung at each and every sports game. No other country does that, not like us, except in international play, or international events like the Olympics. If a regular league game is being played, many countries do NOT stand and praise their military or their flag. They simply enjoy the game.

I am even sicker of the over the top military propaganda you see at every game. Advertising, huge flags, half time shows, and tv close ups.

Despite a few minor mistakes and errors, like the near extermination of an innocent group of people, the torture and deaths of millions, and the pesky, even troublesome invasions of many mainly peaceful countries, the Nazi Germany war machine did some great things. They industrialized access to outer space, they invented entirely new technologies, even sciences, and probably their most impressive feat was how they polluted the minds of everyone, especially their own citizens. Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels may seem to be a cartoon character by today’s smoother and higher tech efforts, but he was an immense success in his time, and even now survivors talk about how the Nazi machine awed and impressed the locals, while scaring the Shyte out of those they intended to invade.

What you see before any professional NFL game is no different than what the German leaders did to their own population. It is a sophisticated form of brain washing, it is a forced diet, not of patriotism, but something far darker, far scarier.

Nationalism.

Ugly, fascist nationalism. Under its dark cloud, we never blame the troops for killing innocents through misguided, misinformed,  or badly planned drone missile attacks on  afghan wedding parties. We never question any higher ranking officers who ordered or sent down the chain orders to torture folks. We never seek criminal actions for war crimes, even against the military who conspire with major corporate thieves who ripped off the US for billions during IraqNam or Afghanistan. (Honestly, could Haliburton  and others have stolen as much as they did without a willful blind eye, or more likely, the active assistance of the US military in Iraq? And how many of those later ended up in a cushy lobbying job once they left the military?)

The problem with this country is not that our navy is too small. (Think of it as a Floating Maginot Line) Rather, it is that in a post-Vietnam era, any criticism of our military seems to be inappropriate and frowned upon. Yes, I do respect those who serve honorably. I cry for those whose bodies are mangled, and I fully honor those who have died, too many in wars of choice, like IraqNam, not in wars of necessity. We have three, perhaps five active war zones in which our troops and unmanned drones are still actively killing people. Is there any political discussion or even a vote in the house or senate whether we should be doing them? Whether it is in our best interest? Whether we are creating more problems than solving them with such an active face in so many countries that pose absolutely no threat to us?

When I see a flag the size of the entire football field unfurled, being held by a hundred + active military folks, with a Rah Rah nationalism theme running at full blast, even before a game has started, I realize that our land of the free and home of the brave is a very scary, very different, and very troubling country.

Apparently, I am not the only one with a troubled conscience. The PTSD and mental health problem rates among drone operators are so high, that our military is suffering from  serious staffing problems. They can no longer maintain their kill rate. Apparently, the video feeds are now so good that drone operators are having nervous breakdowns after repeatedly watching the results of their murderous missile attacks. It proves that they are more human, more humane, and better human beings than those who plan, create, and order our current undeclared drone wars. Drone operator PTSD

I know some will object. Go ahead. I can handle it. But do yourself a favor. Step back. Look at the ultra-nationalism being displayed by the Klown Kar Kandidopes seeking the GOP nomination. Look at the gaudy display of Pro War Nationalism before every big sports game. And start adding two and two. It is a symptom of something quite ugly that seems ever stronger in our country. And looking at the zoo that is the GOP race, with every single one of them becoming ever more irrational, more pro war, and less inclined to use diplomacy, rational thinking, or even just sitting back and thinking through their own words, it is becoming a scary country.

Land of the free? When ATT conspires with the NSA to spy on each and every one of us?  When it takes a Snowden to learn about warrant less, intrusive spying on INNOCENT AMERCANS? When police use force first and foremost, and white racists cheer the deaths of unarmed innocents?

There is something rotten in the State of Denmark. Except, this ain’t Denmark.

British Docs Fear Statins. So should you.

Doctors around the whirled have long pushed Statins as a magical mystery tour of health and eternal yute. That might have to be amended to “infernal” instead.  By forcefully (and I mean forcefully)  lowering cholesterol levels, they predicted that routine Statin use by healthy people would prevent heart disease and lead to longer, healthier lives. Not to mention much higher profits for statin drug makers.

Not everyone got on board for the maiden voyage of the SS Statin Express, however. Some docs questioned whether a healthy person should jerk around his/her/its cholesterol levels, especially since cholesterol plays such a major role in your health. Those that didn’t are now counting their blessings and new and improved studies start casting aspersions on the widespread use of these drugs.

A few facts that you need to know about this War on Cholesterol:

As you sit, your brain is chock full of Cholesterol. Should you be worried? Probably not. It seems to be critically important to memory, rational thinking, and learning. In your low-risk group of relatively healthy people, if 600 people take statins routinely from age 20-40, perhaps one and only one may be spared from a heart attack by the time they reach 65.

In higher-risk populations, there probably is some good that they do. However, as patents expire, the drug companies have increased potency of their Statins, and pushed sales to ever younger groups, as early as the age of 8.

So, as Joe Biden was quoted, what is the big fucking deal? If it helps lower cholesterol, it has to be good. And the more powerful the drugs, the better my chances are with my health, right?

There is a dirty, seedy, greedy underside to this push of this so-called miracle drug:

Side Effects.

A surprisingly common one is muscle pain – up to 70% of users complain about it. All too often, docs who profit from prescribing Statins blame your aging rather than the drugs they push. But it gets worse. Failing memory, depression, irritability — are directly related to Statin use. Even then, doctors have blamed other factors, age, lack of exercise, diet, or even personality disorders. This is despite 65-70% of users mentioning it to their doctors (which tells you just how troubling those complaints have to be).

The bad news keeps coming. Adult onset Diabetes is directly related to Statin use. The relationship is direct – the longer and higher doses you take, the more likely you are to become diabetic. The British Medical Journal previously estimated that 46% of all users will suffer from Diabetes unnecessarily because of widespread Statin use.

If that ain’t bad enough, try this: STATINS SEEM TO CAUSE PARKINSON’S DISEASE.

Let me type the more slowly so everyone can get the idea. STATINS SEEM TO CAUSE PARKINSON’S.  Not just confusion, forgetfulness, inability to process new information, or inability to learn – Actual, factual PARKINSON’S DISEASE. And not even the Parkinsonism that welders working in enclosed places with Stainless and other alloys get to enjoy.

Dr Kailash Chand, deputy chairman of the British Medical Association, was speaking following research which found those who take the cholesterol-lowering drugs are more than twice as likely to develop Parkinson’s disease in later life than those who do not.A study last week showed statin use increases the risk of diabetes by 46 per cent. It has led to calls to end to the widespread use of the drugs.
The risks of side-effects of these drugs are far greater than any potential benefits and it is high time these drugs were restricted in the low-risk population.  The Parkinson’s research carried out over 20 years, and involving nearly 16,000 people, suggests cholesterol may have a vital role in protecting the brain and nervous system.

The findings have alarmed experts who say if applied to the number of Britons deemed eligible for statins it could equate to 150,000 extra patients with Parkinson’s, a central nervous system disorder affecting one in 350 mostly older people.

The work has also fueled concerns that statins, now recommended for up to half the adult population over 50 by government drug policy adviser the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, may be doing many patients more harm than good.

Statin use linked to ParkinsonsTo make matters worse, the Drug Dealers and their pusher Doctors initially used to provide Statins those who had a 30 per cent or greater risk of suffering a heart attack. That number was shelved and in 2005, Statins were pushed to the population with only a 20 per cent risk. Drugsters have been moving to push it down to 10% (or 80% of the population) AND they have been moving the goalposts on age down to 8.

Here is the cite on Diabetes:

But London cardiologist Dr Aseem Malhotra said: “Although the benefits are clear in reducing the risk of death in those with established heart ­disease this is not the case for a low-risk population.“Millions see them as a magic pill but they are not.

“This research shows you are more likely to develop irreversible Type 2 diabetes than prevent a non-fatal heart attack if you are at low risk.”

Participants in the study, carried out by the University of Eastern ­Finland and Kuopio University Hosp­ital, were aged between 45 and 73 and followed for six years. New diabetes was diagnosed in 625 men.

Cholesterol and Diabetes.When cholesterol is so critical to mental functioning, who wants to risk having to stick needles in your arm daily, test your blood sugars all the time, and suffer the risk of having the shakes so bad that you need to hire someone to do it for you?

On a personal note, my former GP pushed Statins hard, harder and hardest. He could not understand why I refused to take them. “It is all benefits and no downside/ Why can’t you see that?”  He quit practicing because of Parkinson’s about four years ago. He also compared his muscle pain to my constant back problems. Too bad his only response was hydrocodone.

I have(had) an expert who was also a big fan of Statins. He proudly showed me the latest, far more powerful version he had been taking since they came out. I had to withdraw him as an expert because his Parkinson’s made it impossible for him to travel.

Yet another scandal brewing in Big Pharma?  Recall restless leg syndrome? A nonsense diagnose intended to sell meds by popular demand? Or what of Pain Meds that actually kill?  Remember when you saw more VIOXX ads that beer or car ads on T&V? Merck spent 1.4 BILLION on advertising a year. Despite that, and after recouping every penny of research, development and manufacturing costs, they still made more than a BILLION a year in net profits. Pity it would kill you, although admittedly that would stop your complaints of pain.
VIOXX pulled off the market – cuz, it will damage, even kill you.

My hands down favorite has to be ulcer medications. An Aussie scientist claimed that a common bacteria was the cause of most ulcers he saw in his practice. Barry Marshall came up with this idea after he saw ulcers coincidently disappear when he gave his patients anti-biotics for unrelated problems.

It has been claimed that the H. pylori theory was ridiculed by the establishment scientists and doctors, who did not believe that any bacteria could live in the acidic environment of the stomach. Marshall has been quoted as saying in 1998 that “(e)veryone was against me, but I knew I was right.”

Eventually, despite strong complaints from the Drugster Industry, he was proven correct: Marshall and Robin Warren showed that the bacterium Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is the cause of most peptic ulcers, reversing decades of medical doctrine holding that ulcers were caused by stress, spicy foods, and too much acid. This discovery has allowed for a breakthrough in understanding a causative link between Helicobacter pylori infection and stomach cancer.
Bacteria the cause of most ulcers.Given that kind of track record, I am not surprised at this man-made mess regarding Statins.  “In an editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Dr John Ioannidis estimated that the total sales of statins may approach $1 trillion worldwide by 2020; the most commercially successful drug in history, atorvastatin (Lipitor®), had sales exceeding $120 billion between 1996 and 2011.” Statin sale records.

Holy Heart Attack, Batman. A TRILLION DOLLARS IN SALES? No wonder the drugster industry is petrified over these new Statin findings.

I don’t practice medicine, although I do play doctor in my bedroom on occasion, but even I can add 2+2. It sure seems to me that Statins have a place in the medicine cabinet, just not for every adult in the US and A. Perhaps 5-8% at most. Instead, today’s docs seem intent on pushing Statins as a magic cure for, well see below:

High blood pressure?
Statins
Low blood pressure?
Statins
Erectile Disfunction?
Statins
Gall Bladder issues, including stones?
Statins
Sore male nipples and breast enlargement?
Statins
Testicular sensitivity?
Statins
Hemorrhoids?
Statins
Athlete’s feet?
Statins
Halitosis?
Statins
Cranial auto-vacuumitis? (See generally, Michelle Bachmann)
Statins
Vaginal itch?
Statins
Pre-Menstrual-Syndrome?
Statins
Migraines?
Statins
Agoraphobia?
Statins
Melanoma?
Statins
Auto-Immune-Deficiency-Syndrome?
Statins
psoriasis?
Statins
Bipolar Disorder, with Manic-Depressive and Suicidal tendencies?
Statins
Flatulence, with spastic Diarrhea?
Statins
Anal cysts?
Statins

(This Public Service Announcement was brought to you by the AMA and your local Statin supplier. Try Statins. It can only help you out!)

If you suffer from restless leg syndrome, diarrhea, constipation, insomnia, narcolepsy, erectile dysfunction, pryoprisms, vaginal dryness, vaginal discharge, nausea, anorexia, epilepsy, hoarseness, mental instability, depression, mania, suicidal tendencies, gout, ulcers, perspiration, diaper rash, tooth decay, oral tumors, confusion, irritability, anger, ideas of shooting up a post office, toe nail loss, delusional thoughts, angry dreams, constant thirst, shaking hands, muscle contractions, knee problems, dizziness, blurred vision, dry mouth, saliva dripping from your mouth, dental sensitivity, an uncontrollable need to rob a currency exchange while armed with a sagging banana, a sudden love of baseball, or visible, frothing oral Tumors with fungus, heart failure, irreversible lung congestion,  swollen scrotum, ovarian cancer, aortic aneurisms,  STOP TAKING THIS MEDICATION and contact your doctor immediately.

If you have an indescribable urge to dress up as a clown, stand in the middle of a busy intersection, while singing “Ding Dong, the Witch is dead” and keeping time by jumping up and down on one leg, then you have most likely overdosed on Statins, and your brain is now incapable of normal ideation, or even concrete ideation. Seek psychiatric help immediately.

Then again, anyone who is healthy and is taking Statins may want to seek that kind of help, too.

Donald Trump is a Plant

The more I watch the Donald perform his gig on air, the more I am convinced that he is a deliberately concocted, deliberately sold, and deliberately distracting plant.

What better way to seek the result you actually want?

First, you drive some of the nuts into distraction. Hucksterbee is going ever more to the Reich side, trying to find even his 15 seconds of fame, much less 15 minutes. As his folksy “charm” offensive becomes ever more transparent, silly, and just plain laughable, the huckster will finally hang up his angel wings and retire from Ye Olde Politicks. I just hope he makes it on the T&V this Thursday. 

Marco Rubio is both too inexperienced and too dumb to matter. Perhaps with the right seasoning, more pepper than salt, some onion, oregano, plus a bunch of cilantro (oops, it is all being recalled because of “Sam and Ella’s” new flavoring) and perhaps a tad of garlic, Rubio can develop into a W Clone, saying stupid shit, but without having the balls, the unmitigated arrogance, and stage presence to win despite multiple personal shortcomings.

Rick Perry? The best two things he has going for him are his new spectacles, and the knowledge that he is easily twice as smart as the man who replaced him. But NOT a serious candidate. Perry is fighting a fight on uneven terms. Most of the country is not Texan, and most of his competition is just as bad as he. 

Christ Chrissie? If his shenanigans of the past didn’t fuck his career forever, the fall out from his despicable Tunnel cancellation decision make his prospects, especially in the heavily populated NE of the country impossible. Christie’s latest, greatest effort at redemption? He has re-re-re-recreated himself as a friend of the commuter. AFTER he cancelled an absolutely critically necessary tunnel to ship hundreds of thousands of commuters on a daily basis. (Soon afterwards, he took the money and claimed the conservative throne because of that idiotic move) 

Squat Walker? I suspect that even his sugar daddies, or uncles, if your prefer, realize that he is seriously damaged goods, and no amount of their ill gotten gains can fix it all. Squat stoops to our direct north. Wisconsin used to be a state with great people, great cheese, better beer, and wonderful schools, especially its top notch university system. Scott’s turned the system into a “cystern.” Every union, excepting the police and fire morans who didn’t fully see our warnings as accurate, has had its present and future destroyed. The economy is now so bad, especially in comparison to states like Illinois or Minnesote, that Scott has been forced into out and out lying about his results. (Think Kansas, but without the funding by the Kochs).

Sanitorium? A frothy mix of religion, (who knows better than his pope, no less) stupidity, willful ignorance, and unyielding, unbending, fairy-tale based faith. I wonder just what sort of psychotropic medications could get rid of the voices in his head. If only he would seek decent psychiatric care under the ACA.

Ted Cruz controls a small segment of ideologically perverted voters, the kind who enjoy visiting grade schools, or crashing birthday parties for 9 year olds in public parks, while toting their Open Carry AK-47s. He cannot be stupid, not with his educational and professional pedigree. But, what could turn a man with some intellect into a braying mule-like jerk who manages to pick the wrong position on every major iissue?  I think there are three choices – A. he does it on purpose because he enjoys playing with people’s minds, and wonders just how far he could go before being found out; B. He really believes that spew he peddles;, or C. He suffers from a similar illness as Sanitorium.

 Bobby Jindahl – His candidacy has earned the following, weighty commentary: 

Lindsey Graham – I keep wondering what the people of his state are thinking, repeatedly keeping him in the senate. As substance goes, Lindsey is the kind of competitor that if he stands in the bright midday sun, he creates no shadow at all.

Rand Paul, Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina – A failed libertarian, a failed neurologist, and an extremely failed businessperson? the mind boggles.

That leaves T-Rump and JeBushBush.

What a brilliant move, if the rumor about JeBushBush is true – that he sent operatives to by hook or crook, convince the Donald that he could win. What a strategery –  knowing that all you have to do is stay back in the pack, gather unbelievably huge amounts of Citizen’s United  millions, exude confidence, keep quiet and above the fray (except when Hilary accurately calls you out and you react instinctively – ie, like an idiot) and wait until the Donald self-immolates or quits, or more likely fires himself because he realizes that his campaign resembles a floating turd in an un-flushed toilet far more than a presidential caliber candidate. The added bonus is with a hothead like The Donald, he, too, will be taking aim at Hilary, with often accurate and painful aim. In fact, his attacks on Hilary might even be supported by Bush-Leaks to Team Donald in secret.

So as The Donald starts eroding the invincible aura that she tried for years to create, who is the winner? JeBushBush.

There might be token resistance to The Donald by the most obvious GOP leaders, like the RNC, the RCCC, the RSCC, and their best traitorous friend, Debbie Whatshername Schultz who ACTUALLY SUPPORTS Florida GOP candidates over Democrats.

Yes, I can fully believe that Donald Trump is a plant. Soooo, From the Church of Ineffable Stupidity, let’s talk agriculture:

So, what sort of plant is the Donald?

My top bet is with the species ARECACEAE

This botanical family of perennial shrubs and trees more commonly known as palm trees.  They have flowering seasons, from routinely, to as much as 100 years between flowers. Like the Donald, the vast majority are restricted to tropical, subtropical, and warm temperate climates. And just like Donald’s hair, most palms are distinguished by their large, compound, evergreen fronds arranged at the top of an unbranched stem. As well as being morphologically diverse, palms inhabit nearly every type of habitat within their range, from rainforests to deserts, again like the Donald. Although he is selling his $21 million condo in NYC.

The next bet would be ROSACAEA

This botanical family is more commonly known as roses. They form a group of plants that can be erect shrubs, climbing or trailing with stems that are often armed with sharp prickles. Flowers vary in size and shape and are usually large and showy, in colours ranging from white through yellows and reds. In fact, grasping a Donald is no easier than grasping a thorny rose. Both will bite back. The problem is that while both roses and the Donald are superb at attracting attention, even at a distance, a rose uses its color, aroma, and natural beauty to grab your attention, while the Donald uses inane attacks, lies, deceit and more than anything, he relies on human nature to be attracted to a coming train wreck.

The last potential possibility would be PINACAEA

This botanical family includes the plants that we know as Pines. Woody, with an incredible variety of cone, leaf and seed characteristics, varieties can do as well in a blazing desert like Las Vegas as an ocean front area like the Jersey shore. Various species can survive in both temperate and subtropical regions of, where they are grown as timber or cultivated as ornamental plants in parks and gardens. Like the Donald too many of the introduced species have become invasive and threaten native ecosystems. Also like the Donald, the vast majority of Pines are notoriously thin skinned, somewhat sappy, and when exposed to too much heat, they can literally explode in flame.

What is that awful Stench?

What in the world is going on?

First, United stops all flights after its quite large computer network fails.

Next, NYSE stops all trading because its computers suffered some fault.

This comes after China(?) hacked multiple allegedly well protected federal computer systems over the past several months.

So what else is in the news? Greece, China, and the probable shutdown of the US government because of unfettered Teabuggery.

Let’s take Greece first. Austerity not only does not work, it actually makes things worse. The only word that describes what Austerity has done to Greece is “horrific.” And Merkel wants to make things worse. Piketty, and many others are waving a red flag in Merkel’s face, but she is color-blind, and immune to any outside advice. Her mind is made up, much like concrete that has already set.

Luckily for the US, our brush with disaster was limited (but we still suffered damage) when the mandated cuts in all federal spending actually took place. Almost everyone was shocked that the imaginary hammer actually fell in 2013. What we have now as the status quo, will stay with us, doing damage until 2021. Budget Sequestration was, is and will be a disaster for the US. Yet, we should survive, if only we do smart things like dropkick the F-35 in the process. Merkel’s Austerity solutions for Greece will be far worse, especially when one out of four Greeks are unemployed.

China? Wow. Shades of 1929. In the last few days, the huge, insular (ATM-based *) margin-festered Chinese stock market lost 30% of its value. At least 1,430 of the 2,776 companies traded in China which make up the Shanghai, have decided to pull their shares as markets continue their lemming-like march off the financial cliff.

We are talking TRILLIONS of dollars that have evaporated. An amount larger than the total GNP of the UK for an entire year.

The problem is compounded because the Chinese government deliberately permitted, even pushed, margin trading, with unbelievably easy terms (if the market rises). People who owned any asset, including a home, were able to double, triple, even quadruple their “bet” on the market by using their assets as collateral on a loan for the stock purchase. When the market value drops, those loans are due, wiping out hundreds of millions of families’ assets and destroying hundreds of thousands of small companies in the process.

Much like a Monty Python skit, (Nudge, nudge, wink, wink) everyone knew that the Chinese market was heavily over-inflated, and bore no factual relationship with their actual economy. Worse yet, the allegedly “thriving” parts of the economy (building new cities, new skyscrapers, and pouring concrete and laying steel) had run out of demand, while the pace of investment actually increased. Building an 80 story building in three weeks? Impressive, except when it remains empty.

Someone made out during this mess. Goldman Sachs clearly profited on both the start of the current Greek tragedy, swapping decent debt for crap, and now, like vultures picking and pecking among the corpses. It is likely that someone also profited from the Chinese disaster in the making.

The Greek Tragedy was a designed failure. The Chinese one, quite possibly was, too. (along with some really short-sighted policies from Beijing. The US govt. was seriously hacked. Today, United’s massive computers fail, AND the NYSE shuts down.

And now, the Wall Street Urinal is reporting that the US government will be shut down again, by the GOP.

Is there a pattern in the making here?

– – – – – – –

* The Chinese have used this latest market bubble, which was artificially created by margin investing, to fund various military, social, and democratic investments, but these have been badly directed, and unbelievably fraudulent and inefficient. Think of the margin investment as creating a giant ATM that Bejing has used as a source of free money. It cannot and will not last.