Good Old Days

We can be sure that what the tea baggers mean by “the good old days” [“Whose Good Old Days?”, Editorial, 2/15/15 TPP] is when whites lived in suburbia, blacks lived in their ghettos, and Latinos lived in their barrios.

To them, America’s golden age was when all children recited Christian prayers in public schools. And if some of those kids were Jewish, Buddhist, or other – well, too bad.

Those good old days held sweet memories of married moms who stayed home. Of course, they could only dream of an opportunity to develop their intellectual potential by doing something besides homemaking.

Let’s also not forget that segregation and lynching went unhindered in the South during those good old days, while blatant racial discrimination was alive and well everywhere else in the nation.

Also in the good old days (before Roe vs. Wade), countless women died as a result of back alley abortions. And in that era (which many folks think of as life replicas of Norman Rockwell’s illustrations of America’s innocence), our government regarded the world as its private board war game, where it felt free to topple legitimate governments that dared to disobey Uncle Sam.

Yes … those are the good old days which the reactionary tea baggers yearn for, and which progressives hope we’ll never see again.

David Quintero
Monrovia, Calif.

Obama Misses Issues

Jan. 20, I was looking at the 12/15/14 issue to re-read Margot Ford McMillen as I missed her in the 2/1/15 issue. ... It is notable that engaging in warfare all over the world and out into space will not improve the daily lives of the majority of citizens of the US. Tonight I just listened to Obama [in the State of the Union address], though the message did not cover issues that should be covered like local organic food production, issues of the breakdown of the public school system, the idiocy of health care controlled by pharmaceutical corporations and insurance companies, the captive milk production, which requires that unpolluted raw milk cannot be sold — only “pasteurized”. Ugh! We should be getting universal medical care with no insurance companies involved!

I appreciate your coverage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership disaster, Keystone XL pipeline issues, torture — I’ve just finished reading Glenn Greenwald’s No Place to Hide and I’m not sure that Cuba will be better off with more United States cars there.

Today, I read all through the 2/1/15 issue. I feel very well fed by The Progressive Populist even though my organic gardener, who farmed in my back yard for five years, has now moved west. Now it is up to great-grandmother Margie and widow/daughter Ellen to farm it. ...

I am grateful for your work in getting out The Populist. I also depend on David Barsamian and Alternative Radio for knowing what goes on as I become less mobile.

Margie Eucalyptus
Kansas City, Mo.

I’ll Vote for Bernie

In your 2/1/15 Letters page, there she is again, Reba Shimansky, telling every left-wing columnist in existence to vote for Hillary and that no proud American will ever, ever vote for Bernie Sanders, a Socialist Jew — ever!

I suspect that there are a huge number of socialists in New York (and growing). In any case, the people I talk to think Bernie is just fine in 2016. California, Oregon and Washington are not called the “left coast” for no reason. In the unlikely event that Elizabeth Warren does run for president, all this may change. Otherwise, I vote for Bernie.

Clifford DeVoy
Tacoma, Wash.

Not Voting is a Choice

In Froma Harrop’s “Stop Making Excuses for Nonvoting Millennials” in 2/15/15 TPP, she overlooks that both parties are the same. They both favor war and corporations. So when there is no real choice, I understand why idealistic citizens do not vote. Note how Hondurans and Mexican voters “stand down” in voting as our country has interfered with their democratic choices. Our young need better parties, better candidates, a better future. Thank you.

Elizabeth Smith
Kansas City, Mo.

No Fear Among Conservative Pillagers

I’m always amused whenever a local-area conservative zealot whines about income redistribution and taxing our societal pillagers like Wall Street and our corporate entities more, as well as removing multiple loopholes in our tax codes that enable them to continue to skirt their fair share contribution in support of our Founders’ espoused egalitarian society yet to be achieved. I’m well aware of former economist Milton Friedman’s sentiments regarding corporations having absolutely no obligation whatsoever to anyone but their shareholders and would foster some reconsideration amongst Republicans as to how our “right wing” Justices on the Supreme Court have amazingly determined that corporations have magically been turned into people. Wow! Supernatural!

From our nation’s era of “Robber Barons” during society’s Gilded Age (1870s to 1900) forward to our Great Depression (1929 through the 1930s) and all the other multiple financial crises, right up to our most recent (2008) Wall Street debacle, all have been perpetrated by society’s “white-collar pillagers” but, as Jack Abramoff points out in his book (Capital Punishment), “they’re all bought and paid for,” that’s why very few ever get prosecuted.

Human behavior has not changed a single iota since our first homo sapiens existed some 30,000 to 137,000 years ago; and we have, at the beginning of the 21st Century, failed to institute policies, laws, regulations that would put the so-called “fear of God/reprisal” into the bane of societal misdeeds within our political, financial sector and corporatocracy where our greatest human harm emanates.

Frank C. Rohrig
Milford, Conn.

Tell Voters About Congress Members

The 1% (with their agents, the Republicans) have controlled major media since the 1970s (for details, ask Robert Parry at Consortiumnews.com) and have been filling the 99% with propaganda and misinformation. The 99% don’t know it’s propaganda, so half of the 99% are suckered into voting for politicians (mostly Republican) who serve the 1%.

Those politicians who serve the 1% are able to serve the 1% because they know most of the 99% will never find out how they vote or do whatever else they do to help the 1% and screw the 99%.

This will never change until the 99% are proactively told how the media has been manipulating them and then told how their congressman and senators vote and do whatever else they do. 

This could be done with emails written in such a way that people will want to forward to others in an effort to go viral. Also, people should be told such things as how only billionaires/corporations can afford a lot of TV ads and that the politicians those ads promote are the ones most likely to enrich those billionaires/corporations funding the ads, etc.

To start with, the people in each state should be sent emails telling them how their congressman and senators (with a D or R next to their name) voted on each important bill and the number of Rs and Ds in the country who voted yea and the number who voted nay. Also, they should be told of any riders, amendments, introduced bills, action to keep a bill from coming up for a vote, etc. that will help the rich and hurt the people their congressman or senators initiated. 

This should have been done years ago. Please do your best to see that someone or some organization will commit to doing it. If nothing is done, nothing will change. 

There is a lot more that needs to be done that isn’t presently being done to change this plutocracy to a democracy, but this is a start.

Deek Crowley
Wayne, Maine

Editor’s Note: You can get information from Project Vote Smart (votesmart.org), a nonpartisan organization, about your elected officials from county government through Congress, including their votes on important bills and their positions on key issues.

Gas Price Manipulation

In Hawaii, gasoline prices dropped about 50 to 70 cents per gallon immediately after the elections. There is also news that prices of crude oil have been dropping for months, in regions which are not favorable to US interests.

Is it possible that US gasoline prices were kept artificially high to provide funds to wealthy corporations who in turn can, under the Citizens United decision, give substantial amounts of cash to those congressmen and administrators who would then use these funds to spread lies and deceit among voters and to disenfranchise voters who might vote for non-corporate favorites? Examination reveals that those responsible for the Citizens United decision and many other anti-populist and anti-environmental decisions should be referred to as the “Supreme Courtesans.”

D. Gardner Hill
Honolulu, Hawaii

From The Progressive Populist, March 15, 2015


Blog | Current Issue | Back Issues | Essays | Links

About the Progressive Populist | How to Subscribe | How to Contact Us

Copyright © 2015 The Progressive Populist
PO Box 819, Manchaca TX 78652