Ah...did in 3 plus minutes at 68 yrs old which any "new" comic couldnt
even fathom of thinking nor delivering. George Carlin is
still the best there is, the best there was and the best there ever
“Soon there will only be two classes, the truly needy and the truly greedy!”--- from the movie( Flash Back)
For all their talk of "fighting them there, so we don’t fight them
here", there is a very real war that the Bush Administration policies
are waging here on our shores: The War Against The Middle Class
. Despite the rosy characterizations of our economy from pundits,
there is real data that shows that the American Dream may be just
that–a dream–for a growing percentage of Americans, who struggle with a
larger debt burden.
America’s middle class is drowning in debt. A typical middle income
family earning around $45,000 a year saw its debt burden grow by 33.1%
between 2001 and 2004, even after adjusting for inflation. Debt
relative to income rose even more, to 33.9%, during this period for
middle income families. Personal bankruptcies among these households
are rising steeply.
The reasons for greater economic distress among middle class
households are not hard to pinpoint. Slow income growth between 2001
and 2004, the last year for which complete data is available, has not
kept pace with the rising cost of big ticket items such as housing and
education loans, medical expenses and transportation. Family budgets
have been squeezed.
A common but misplaced assumption is that the growth in debt among
middle-income families — those with incomes roughly between $25,000 to
$70,000 a year — is the result of over-consumption through increased
credit card debt. Rather, growth in debt is primarily due to heavier
borrowing for investments in homes or education, both of which saw
dramatic price increases in recent years. The cost of a college
education, for example, grew by 24.6% between 2001 and 2004, after
adjusting for inflation.
Thom Hartman's new book SCREWED: The Undeclared War on the Middle Class
on what he terms "the death of the middle class" that I’ve just started
reading. Hartman makes a fairly compelling case for a "Fair Market
Economy" vs. the neocons’ beloved Free Market Economy, which history
has shown has benefitted just the top percentage and caused a greater
and greater chasm between the upper and middle classes.
Cause and effect are often confusing, but clearly the effect after six
years of this administration's policies are a disaster to everyone
below the GOP donor class.
acts as if globalization and the outsourcing of jobs is an act of
nature -- it is not, it is the result of policy. And it can just as
easily be reversed should there be the political will/expediency to do
so. If globalization is such a peachy treat, then why are the countries
who get suckered into these trade deals always worse off? Where's the
uptick for the US? When companies like Intel lay off 20,000 employees
while they are profitable, don't we need to look at that? What does
corporate American mean when they say they need to be competitive? Why
can capitol move freely about the world, but people cannot?
is the American Middle Class dead? - not yet, but given enough time and
the continuation of these disastrous policies, it is only a matter of
time. Have yourselves a Happy LABOR DAY!
If you heard Howard Dean on "Face The Nation" this morning he mentioned
the "War on Terror" and then said "We have a war on the Middle Class in
this country by the Republicans to worry about as well."
Oh great!!! The belligerent and aggressive hallmarks of "short planet syndrome".
Size doesn't matter. That was the message as friends and colleagues
of the late Clyde Tombaugh, the astronomer who discovered Pluto,
gathered on the New Mexico State University campus to protest the
International Astronomical Union's recent decision to strip Pluto of
its status as a planet.
Tombaugh's widow, Patricia, and their son, Al Tombaugh, also participated.
NMSU astronomer Bernie McNamara told the crowd that textbooks shouldn't be rewritten.
"Why not? Because the debate is not over," McNamara said.
The IAU determined last week that a planet must orbit the sun and be
large enough to assume a nearly round shape, as well as "clear the
neighborhood around its orbit." Pluto's oblong orbit overlaps
Neptune's, which led the IAU to downsize the solar system to eight
planets from the traditional nine.
McNamara argued that only about 400 of the union's thousands of members were present when the Aug. 24 vote was taken.
"This was not a statement by the astronomical community at large,"
he said, adding that a petition opposing the IAU definition of a planet
is circulating among the world's planetary scientists and astronomers.
Tombaugh was 24 when he discovered Pluto while working at Lowell
Observatory in Flagstaff, Ariz., in 1930. He came to NMSU in 1955 and
founded the school's research astronomy department.
His legacy is visible across the city, where an observatory, a campus street and an elementary school bear his name.
Some say Tombaugh's discovery was significant because it took 60
years for stronger telescopes to locate another object with an unusual
orbit like Pluto's, and 73 years before scientists discovered a bigger
object in the area.
"Clyde Tombaugh was an American hero," said Herb Beebe, a longtime
colleague. "For that reason alone, Pluto's status as a full-fledged
planet should be kept."