Ground-Zero Mosque And Other Things

Weekly Observations for the first week of October 2011.

An Islamic Cultural Center aka “the Ground Zero Mosque” opened last week amid almost no noise. Named “Park51” the opening featured a photo exhibit of 160 photos of immigrant children in New York City. Had Bill O’Reilly not been so concerned about his taxes and his empty threat to quit his show, maybe he could have roiled up some hate like he did last August. Maybe if Michelle Bachmann wasn’t sinking like a rock, she could have said a few crazy sentences about the opening. Let us hope the opening is all the more we hear. May they pray, eat, exercise and commune in peace.

Looks like bad news continues for for-profit schools taking over the public education system. In the US, studies have shown that charter schools usually perform the same or worse than their public counterparts. Now a study comes out in Sweden that the for-profit schools are not performing as expected.  Make your own conclusion. My thoughts are that education is just not conducive to the profit motive.

Rick Perry! Rick Perry! Come out of hiding Rick Perry! Seems like this guy has disappeared under a rock.

From a signature line on dailykos: (so true)
“Letting Republicans run the government is like putting Atheists in charge of a church. They don’t believe in it, don’t care if it works – and they take no responsibility for the results.”

We went to visit the Occupy Iowa City Friday night. We left early, just as the human microphone was beginning. My best guess is that there were around 200 to 250 people there. Compared to other venues, this seems to be a very good turnout. If this were a tea party event and Fox was reporting the crowd would have been estimated at 10,000.

One reason you seldom hear discussed as to why banks and corporations are sitting on huge piles of money rather than hiring a few people which would cause an upswing in demand and start an upward spiral: The more people unemployed, the larger the labor pool. The larger the labor pool, the easier to supress wages and intimidate workers. The easier to intimidate workers, the less powerful the unions. This is a win-win for corporations.

One other thing to note: Corporations ARE HIRING. Just not in the United States. They are hiring in China, they are hiring in Vietnam, and they are hiring in India among others. While we have lost 2.5 million jobs in the US since the beginning of Bushco, American corporations have hired nearly 3 million overseas. In 2010 alone, 1.4 million were hired overseas by US companies.

One more note: While everyone mourns the loss of Steve Jobs at Apple, think about where his products were assembled and our current unemployment.

Final note for today. Friday night before the Occupy Iowa City event, Ed Flaherty continued his staunch opposition to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan leading a demonstration calling for an end to these wars. The cost of these wars is staggering. An estimate that came out a couple of months ago pegged the real cost of these wars at nearly 3.5 Trillion.

Unbelievable waste. Once more the words of that old war hero and President, Dwight D. Eisenhower, come to mind:

“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.  The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities.  It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population.  It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals.  We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed 8,000 people.


About Dave Bradley

retired in West Liberty
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