Full Circle: From Jim Wright To Dennis Hastert

The diary below was originally posted in my blog the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

Seventeen years ago Democrats jettisoned the remnants of their eroding spine and House Speaker Jim Wright went down in flames. Wright's fall was a seminal moment for Democrats as well as our national politics. Already on the defensive following defeats in three consecutive presidential elections Democrats crawled into a fetal position and became a self-gelding machine of ineptitude. Corporate militarism and Christian radicalism bagged a trophy and were on the march.

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Wanted: A National Pension Plan For Working People

The diary below was originally posted in my blog the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

Several years ago I was a telemarketer in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn for a wholesale ophthalmic lens company. We sold lenses to small independent mom and pop stores you might purchase a pair of glasses from and our profit margin was thin.

My co-workers were predominantly uneducated and older than forty. Several of my colleagues labored for years on their feet as "lens pickers" with little compensation. Trust me it's far more grueling then it sounds. Sometimes during a busy crunch I helped out on the lens floor and was exhausted after a couple hours. Typically, the lens pickers toiled from 7:00AM to 7:00PM when we packed up at night for messenger pick up.

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Talk Radio's Middle Class Champion: A Podcast Interview With Thom Hartmann

The diary below was originally posted in my blog, the Intrepid Liberal Journal on Saturday, September 23rd when the interview took place.

Thom Hartmann is a dynamic voice for the aggrieved middle class. After one commercial break on a recent broadcast, the national radio host proudly declared,

"Welcome back to the Thom Hartman show where our talking points come from Jefferson and Madison, not some right wing think tank."

He then asks, "Will the next election be hacked?" as he promotes Bobby Kennedy, Jr.'s article in Rolling Stone magazine that examines fraudulent vote counting to the benefit of Republican candidates.

Talkers Magazine noted,

"There's a buzz growing around nationally syndicated talk show host Thom Hartmann, whose nationally syndicated daily program is drawing high marks by those who are on the lookout for talk radio's `Great Liberal Hope.'"

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The Contrarian: A Podcast Interview With Professor Khaleel Mohammed

The diary below was originally posted in my blog the Intrepid Liberal Journal, yesterday September 16th when this interview took place.

San Diego University's Associate Professor of Religion, Khaleel Mohammed, PH.D is a controversy magnet. Born in the South American republic of Guyana and educated at Montreal's McGill University, Professor Mohammed is a Muslim who believes Israel belongs to the Jews. Indeed, Professor Mohammed even references the Koran to support this claim. In an interview with FrontPageMagazine.com two years ago, he cited this passage:

The Koran in Chapter 5: 20-21 states quite clearly: `Moses said to his people: O my people! Remember the bounty of God upon you when He bestowed prophets upon you, and made you kings and gave you that which had not been given to anyone before you amongst the nations. O my people! Enter the Holy Land which God has written for you, and do not turn tail, otherwise you will be losers.'"

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Reminiscing About the Future: George Bush's Resignation Speech On September 11, 2007

The diary below was originally posted earlier today in my blog the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

It appears Democrats will prevail this November and become the majority party in the House of Representatives. Republicans are likely to retain their majority in the Senate - although severely narrowed. John Conyers the ranking Democrat of the House Judiciary Committee has signaled his willingness to impeach President Bush if given the chance. Vice President Cheney may elude this fate if impeachable offenses can't be linked to his office. Legally, the President is the "decider" regardless of the Vice President's influence. Below is a dramatization of what may transpire using the PBS News Hour as a vehicle. The date is September 11, 2007.

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A Podcast Interview With Congressional Candidate Chris Owens

The diary below was originally posted in my blog the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

On July 10th I posted a podcast interview with congressional candidate Chris Owens of Brooklyn, New York's 11th congressional district. As I am new to podcasting, the host site I used at the time wasn't very good. I've finally come up with a better one. Since the Democratic primary for the 11th district is Tuesday, September 12, I thought it made sense to repost the podcast.

This district is a human mosaic of 654,000: 60 percent blacks, 20 percent whites, 12 percent Hispanics, 4 percent Asians and 4 percent other ethnicities. The minorities, mostly Caribbean Americans and other immigrants, comprise 80 percent of the district.

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Taking Genocide Personally

The diary below was orginally posted earlier today in my blog the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

I visited Poland shortly after turning 21. It was March 1990 and I was fortunate to be studying in England my junior year of college. After a rigorous semester of study I jumped at the chance to see Eastern Europe during my next semester break. The memories remain fresh sixteen years later. The tour group put Auschwitz and Birkenau on our itinerary.

For me Birkenau had the greater impact. It was usually hot as we walked the grounds. Days earlier when we first arrived in Poland it was bitter cold. There were crematoriums only partially destroyed by the Nazis in their attempt to conceal evidence prior to the war's conclusion. A lake where the ashes of cremated Jews was dumped remained.

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Reminiscing About the Future: Chuck Hagel vs. Hillary Clinton

The diary below was originally posted earlier today in my blog, the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

Richard Nixon manipulated Americans into believing he had an honorable exit strategy from Vietnam. Ronald Reagan successfully convinced voters he championed a Norman Rockwell society that valued hard work and neighborhood generosity. In 1988, oilman George Herbert Walker Bush won in part as the "environmentalist" candidate. Twelve years later his son stole the presidency after campaigning as a "plain spoken" truth telling man of the people with a "humble" foreign policy.

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Power, Politics, Principle and Overpriced Latex Gloves

The diary below was originally posted earlier today on my blog the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

It was autumn 1992 and I was out of college for a year. Like many undergraduates from liberal art schools I was well educated but didn't possess any skills for the "real world." So I telemarketed for a hideous company that sold overpriced latex gloves to nursing homes while living in the East Village.

The market value for these gloves was approximately $30 per case (10 boxes per case) and we sold them for $400. I earned either $8 an hour or 5% per sale if commissions exceeded my base salary. The company provided us with names of nursing homes nationwide on index cards and we read from a script.

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At Long Last Have You No Sense of Decency David Brooks?

The diary below was originally posted earlier today on my blog the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

David Brooks is a lightweight whom I typically ignore. Other progressive bloggers critique his sophomoric punditry and infantile analysis with enthusiasm. Until Friday, I considered attacking Brooks akin to abusing the Pillsbury Dough Boy.

Standing on an overcrowded A-Train with malfunctioning air conditioning, I read Brooks' column "Bye-Bye Bootstraps" while commuting to Manhattan from Brooklyn. Brooks had the temerity to suggest that a "Wal-Mart leisure class" was emerging in America. One wonders how my fellow passengers suffering from the heat as we commuted to our jobs would've responded to this soft minded propagandist of America's plutocracy.

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