Weekend Update 05-05-2012

Posted: May 5th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Weekend Update | Comments Off on Weekend Update 05-05-2012

It’s Cinco De Mayo! (And that matters here in Texas.)

Purchase Second Mile music and help orphans in Uganda! I posted it in my Weekend Update last week, but it bears repeating.

The Language of Silence. Fr. Stephen Freeman writes about the silence of the heart. “The silence of the heart becomes that necessary condition for hearing the word of Jesus, which is nothing other than salvation.”

Where did the productivity go? We’ve had enormous gains in productivity over the last few decades. Unfortunately, almost all of the profit from those productivity gains went to the largely parasitic non-producers at the top, not those actually doing the producing. Some of the gains did a bit to improve the wage the gap between men and women. But most of it? Straight to the top, baby!

A picture can sometimes convey more information than words. These four charts reveal many of the GOP lies.

Let’s just say it. Republicans are the problem. I’ll note that this column is jointly written by a person from a conservative institution and one from a centrist institution. Not “liberals”, though they certainly knew they would be dismissed as such by Faux News and the brainless dittoheads who form what passes for right-wing “discourse” in our country today.

Wasting Our Minds. I have a son in college — with a 4.0 GPA as a physics major, no less. And I have a daughter still in high school. (My other kids are already out on the career side of things.) I’m concerned about this aspect of the pit into which the GOP has thrown us and out of which they wish to dig us. (And if you didn’t catch the reference to digging yourself out of a hole, I really can’t help you.)

Austerity Fantasies. Data is data and math is math. They describe reality. But we have a huge and highly influential global segment of our population so locked into ideological fantasy they appear unable to perceive and respond any longer to reality.

Wall Street continues to do quite well while the rest of America suffers.

There’s no way to solve Medicare’s problems without solving the problem of health care for everyone. The ACA alone is probably not enough, though better than nothing. Romney’s new plan (really Paul Ryan’s plan) will only make health care worse for all of us.

The real structural problem is in our political system.

The economy has stalled. The GOP won’t let President Obama or the Congressional Democrats actually do anything to help it, but he needs to work harder to point out why they and their plans to turn the US into a plutocracy (to the extent it isn’t already) are the problem.

Most of us are hypocrites in some areas of our lives, but even so some are simply galling. Scott Brown campaigned and won Ted Kennedy’s seat by touting his opposition to the ACA. (That’s an utter affront to the memory of the reposed senator; hopefully the people of that state will correct that error in the general election.) He’s voted for repeal multiple times. But he’s taking advantage of one of the provisions of the ACA by keeping his daughter on his FEHB (federally funded) health care plan. Hopefully the voters in his state will send him back to the rock from under which he crawled. He’s nothing but an unprincipled opportunist. Of course, if he lived here in Texas, he would be rewarded for his hypocrisy, but hopefully that hasn’t spread everywhere in the country.

Wrapped in delusion, Paul Ryan may honestly believe he somehow crafted his budget plan according to the tenets of his Catholic faith. People believe all sorts of strange and bizarre things. But the US Bishops beg to differ.


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