Unplugged without a credit card

Jim Hightower's comments on credit cards really struck home. Having struggled to pay off a 12,000-dollar debt I was NOT actually responsible for ... stemming from the last credit card I ever owned, I have found the brave new world of the Information Superhighway, which resembles more and more the mess the Interstate Highway System was building, to be unwilling to deal with those who are shy of using the damned things.

Just try to join a connection service without a credit card - go ahead! Something I have noticed that none of the recent reports of Steve Case's phenomenal success with America On-Line is that AOL, unlike any of its competitors, allows direct withdrawals from one's banking account (which has also been made an utter necessity in this Brave New World). Even AT&T's otherwise progressive (they even seem tolerant of Internet Phones for Pete's sake!?) WorldNet service (presently) requires a credit card to even log on.

It appears that credit-cards are now so accepted a part of the culture that not only is cash sometimes unacceptable but plastic loansharking has become part of the background; unnoticed except when NOT used.

Boy are we all SUCKERS - to have fallen into this situation of putting ourselves another half-trillion just in CREDIT CARD debt ... added to the several trillion the government (supposedly OUR servants?) sez we owe "defense" industries for their overpriced junk they deliver whenever they feel like getting around to it, and to pay off bad, nay STUPID, loans corrupt S&L's and incompetent banks made with OUR money, to relations of Presidents, who can write off THEIR debits by charging it to the rest of US!

Kafka LIVES!

Gary D. Goodman
P. O. Box 180
McDaniels, KY 40152-0180

'Lean manufacturing'

Since the 1800's many a person has been down the road of the re-engineered work place. Each time the path is more worn - more slippery - more treacherous. Since the dawn of the industrial revolution "wise men" have been tinkering with this manmade productivity institution. In the wisdom of world competitiveness man has refined the processes, but has failed to refine the man.

We have eliminated non-value added processes - often times our jobs. We have improved the value of the product, but have not improved our values. We have improved the quality of our products - but not the quality of life. We hear about worker empowerment - but are not empowered but only sped-up. We have cheapened the price of labor, products and services and in the process cheapened ourselves.

With our labor saving devices we created more time but no time for ourselves. With our newfound "business ethics" and integrity statements we say no to bribes and kickbacks - but don't bat an eye at bribing customers with our jobs. And by eliminating all waste (spare time) we are eliminating our futures.

What could be labor's response in trade for productivity & speed-up? To build a value system based on economic equality, education, fairness, religion, family, community, security, diversity of opinion and family wage jobs. Increased vacation and a 32-hour work week, so we have enough time to enjoy life instead of being consumed by it. To build an industrial base built on truth and integrity instead of lies, deceptive slogans, veiled motives and corporate treachery.

Don Grinde
15906 10th Ave. NW.
Arlington, WA. 98223

FBI files stink

The GOP is making a big stink because somebody in Clinton's office ordered some 300 FBI files on people, including congressmen and the former head of the White House travel office. Clinton's folks are saying that they meant no harm, that it was all a clerk's doing.

Nobody, including the GOP, is asking, "what business does the FBI have in keeping files on Congressmen?" It's presumed that these files are necessary - even Clinton's spokespeople say so - in the interests of "national security."

The Cold War is gone, but the police state lingers on. There is no national security interest here: Is a Congressman going to assassinate a President? If the people authorize a Congressman to be in Washington, what more need be said? If democratically elected Congressmen are to be suspected of "subversion," what does "subversion" mean?

I am reading a book about Hoover, who it's pretty clear, kept his job under JFK by reminding everybody that he had files on Kennedy's sexual adventures. Were these files for national security, or for FBI security? Whose security did they guarantee?

Could it be that the Bureau knows something about Bill, and that that's why the existence of the files hasn't become an issue?

If the Democrats had any principles, they would order the destruction of the FBI's files on everybody who isn't a car thief.

Dick J. Reavis
P.O. Box 4830
Dallas, TX75208

Growers need to pick locks

It's hard to understand why the chicken growers victimized by giants like Cargill, ConAgra and Tyson Foods [See "Shut Down Chicken Racketeers, May 1995 Progressive Populist] have failed to organize to provide their chickens directly to supermarkets at a price that undercuts their lock on the industry. Between the 40 of them, they ought to be able to come up with enough money to open at least a small processing plant that would compete with the biggest buyers and perhaps even attract a bunch more who are unwilling to be victimized any longer.

While it's possible that exclusive contracts with some supermarket chains will discourage them from buying from an independent collective, if the growers hook up on the Internet to provide real-time delivery schedules and pricing info, they ought to be able to get over the hump and be their own bosses.

Joe Shea, Editor-in-Chief
The American Reporter

Morales' address

I feel you will know how to get this small contribution [a check for $35] to the [Victor] Morales campaign, since I haven't a clue along this line.

Perhaps in future issues of the P.P. you could publish this address and urge readers to contribute toward the defeat of Phil Gramm? Or, have contributors send checks to you to forward, thus getting credit, or anyway starts in your crown, so to speak? Sort of a mini-quasi-PAC.

I really love the P.P."

Doris Higgins
Albuquerque, N.M.
Editor replies: Contact Morales, the civics-teacher-turned-Democratic-Senate-nominee, at 122 Willow Lake Lane, Crandall, TX 75114.

Hell given here

I'm 69, forced to retire from construction as a millwright by arthritis, and mad as hell at the corporate takeover of our government, our lives and our future.

Our "sell-out" politicians are no-guts bastards that have sold out our future for their own agenda. We need a new party, made up of labor, greens and all the others as advocated by Linda Martin and John Rensenbrink. [John] Sweeney [president of the] AFL-CIO should bring his people into this coalition. (I was a union man for 50 years.)

Anyway, I like your journal. It keeps my blood pressure up, my shit hot and my mind active. Give 'em hell. Thanks.

Ted Bradshaw
510 Melba Lane
Farmington, NM 87401

P.S: As a Scotsman, I get mad as hell. We will win some day.

Harkin holds up Greenspan

On May 18, the New York Times reported: "The Fed's actions will come under even greater scrutiny than usual in coming months. Not only will the Presidential campaign leave the Fed open to being second-guessed in an intensely partisan atmosphere, but the renomination of Alan Greenspan as Fed chairman is being held up by Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa, a Democrat.

Mr. Harkin, who contends that Mr. Greenspan is sacrificing economic growth to an overemphasis on stamping out inflation, is holding out for an agreement by the Republican leadership to allow a full Senate debate on monetary policy and a recorded vote, rather than the planned voice vote, on a third-year term for Mr. Greenspan." I urge everyone to express your support to Harkin on this issue and urge your Senators to vote no on Greenspan's nomination.

Wade Hudson
The Citizens Alliance

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