American Battle: Which is more important? Wealth or Human Rights?

Photo courtesy Hillsdale College http://online.hillsdale.edu/
Photo courtesy Hillsdale College http://online.hillsdale.edu/
The Battle between Wealth and Human Rights is nearly 250 years old.

Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay promoted the ratification of the United States Constitution with articles and essays that were collected and are still available at The Federalist Papers.*

Within these articles and essays these founders outlined their thinking about creating a federal union. They urged people to allow wise and experienced men who have the public good in mind to counter balance the needs, wishes, and desires of individual states. They believed that a federal union would better safeguard national borders, treaties with foreign nations.  National Government would enforce the laws for all people better, instead of having individual states or individuals fall prey to undue influence for personal gain, personal wealth creation, or a desire of personal power, or by foreign powers.

The Federal Papers were used to educate American voters about the benefits of balancing individuals and individual states’ freedoms with the public good and freedom as well as safety and overall wealth for all.

It is amazing how topical these papers are still today when we are engaged in the same exact battle once again.   It is obvious that the current administration and the Congress is not occupied by educated, experienced and wise men who strive for what is best for everyone.  The Constitution which was written with the public good in mind is now under constant attack.

Freedom of the Press is under attack by a President who has falsified Time Magazine covers decorating his golf courses.  He recently stated that the Constitution is “old-fashioned.”

The health care bill that is currently proposed by the House and the Senate leans strongly toward wealth creation for the few, instead of the public good and freedom for all.   The desire for individual wealth and power trumps the desire to protect freedom and safety for all.

The current administration who won due to manipulating the voting regions by gerrymandering, does not have full public support. Trump undoubtedly won over a lot of the working white class voters by promising to improve the health care system.  Now instead his party wants to eliminate coverage for millions, lower coverage for those who are sick, and increase the premiums for when the policies are used when needed. This translates to the fact that millions more will either not be able to afford healthcare as soon as they get ill or they will go bankrupt trying to pay for medical expenses. In Alaska for instance Premiums for a 60 years old man will go up to $34,000 per year a high price to pay even in a state that offers above average median wages ranging from from $84,000 to $37,284 per median family incomes.

Clean water is under attack by the chosen head of the EPA.  Millions of acres of public lands are leased to oil and gas companies with a history of causing oil spills ruining the environment.  The Secretary of State, Tillerson has a known history of ignoring, if not supporting human rights offenses, by working with government known to steal from their inhabitants and in some cases killing entire villages to be able to provide Oil companies, like Exxon, with drilling rights.

In an op-ed piece in “The Hill” David Abramowitz, points out that looking for short term wealth for the few often hurts human rights for the many in the long run.

Right now the US is run by people with a history of siding with Human Rights offenders.  Trump is publicly friends with human trafficker and known child molester Jeffrey Epstein, who ended up with very little jail time due to the Trump’s family intervention; Tillerson who was nearly sued by Indonesia for human rights offenses but “let go by W. Bush;” Joe Sessions lost his bid for the Supreme Court for his racist comments and attitudes;  Steve Bannon, known for garnering support of the KKK, Neo-Nazis; Mike Pence, known for his ties with the tobacco industry and support of ultra conservative Christians oppressive and dangerous to LGBT persons; Sebastian Gorka known for his help to Russia overthrow Democracy in Hungary; and of course Manafort, Flynn and  Trump’s own son in law; Guiliani who consulted helped prop up dictators like Duterte, Erdogan and created havoc in Venezuela.  The list is too long for this article.

It may be a good idea to reread the Atlantic Monthly Time Capsules as we watch Democracy, Human Rights, Ecology, Education, and everything that has made this country great in the past under attack.

Will the battle for democracy and freedom for all people, regardless of sex, race, religion and national heritage as outlined in the US Constitution be won – AGAIN?

* Kindle Edition free from Amazon and the Gutenberg Press.

 

 

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The Power of Noticing: What the Best Leaders See

Max Bazerman, Author
Max Bazerman, Author

Bazerman helps you how to recognize your own blind spots and how to avoid the habits that lead to poor decisions and ineffective leadership in the first place.

Every one had a negotiation fall apart or had it provide a less positive outcome than hoped for.  Often this is because a critical piece of information and detail was missed or overlooked.  How can you avoid that from happening again?  Should you have noticed?

Max Bazerman, an expert in the field of applied behavioral psychology, draws on three decades of research and his experience instructing Harvard Business School MBAs and corporate executives to teach you how to notice and act on information that may not be immediately obvious. Bazerman suggests you explore your cognitive blind spots, identify any salient details you are programmed to miss, and then take steps to ensure it won’t happen again.

In psychology a blind spot is defined as aspects of our personalities that are hidden from our view.  These might be annoying habits like interrupting or bragging, or they might be deeper fears or desires that are too threatening to acknowledge. One place that blind spots can be found is in strong reactions. An unusually strong negative or positive reaction or stance may suggest an engagement in a process Freud called reaction formation. Reaction formation involves unconsciously transforming an unacceptable or undesirable impulse into its opposite. This tendency is not confined to sexuality. Harsh judgments of others’ behavior may show a personal insecurity – such as, that highly ambitious co-worker may especially irritate you because of your own unexpressed ambitions. Blind spots in these cases need not be objectively negative traits, just traits that are experienced as personally shameful or unacceptable.  Full Article

Simine Vaziere stated in an abstract of her research: “According to the self-other knowledge asymmetry (SOKA) model, the self should be more accurate than others for traits low in observability (e.g., neuroticism), whereas others should be more accurate than the self for traits high in evaluativeness (e.g., intellect). In the present study, 165 participants provided self-ratings and were rated by 4 friends and up to 4 strangers in a round-robin design. Participants then completed a battery of behavioral tests from which criterion measures were derived. Consistent with SOKA model predictions, the self was the best judge of neuroticism-related traits, friends were the best judges of intellect-related traits, and people of all perspectives were equally good at judging extraversion-related traits.”

The great part about the Max Bazerman’s book is that he provides a step-by-step guide to breaking bad habits and spotting the hidden details that will change your decision-making and leadership skills for the better. The key is to learn what a blind spot is and why you are programmed not to notice it.  What is the perceived value to your subconscious?

Additionally, you will learn how to pay attention better not only to what is going on but also to what is “NOT” going on.  Often what is not going on is more illuminating than what is going on. By realizing and acknowledging that both you and the person you are negotiating with come from a place of self-interest — you will be able to identify possible compromises that take both your and the other parties’ interests into consideration.  This helps to close the best possible deal and it will expand your life’s enjoyment as well.

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Trump’s drains the swamp of lobbyist for corporations and replaces them with the corporate officers and bankers

Trump and Icahn get an "A" for honesty
Trump and Icahn get an “A” for honesty
Icahn and Trump are well known for expressing their feelings and opinions without filters.

Bravo?   They are not politically correct and that is what their voters wanted, right?

It is obvious for people in the know to see what attracts them to each other. They are both single-mindedly focused on their own profit. They are both honest about it and have a devil make care attitude.  They are completely unapologetic about any trails of victims they may leave in their wake.  They are bullies and they are honest about it.  If they can get away with something they not only will try the practically must try.  They love the “Game of Business.”   Trump promised to get rid of lobbyists and by golly he sure seems to keep his promise.  Instead of having lobbyists who want who appeal to Congress to create lenient laws that allow for more profit for the 1%.  They indeed get rid of the lobbyists and replace them with the 1%.  What a practical idea.  The Trump voters must be so very pleased.  Trump is keeping his promise to drain the swamp of middle men.  The swamp of government is now honestly run by and for the corporations and venture capital firms and banks, and the 1% who have paid for everything anyway.  The honesty that Trump brings to government is laudable indeed.  No more pretense.  Just making sure that the hyper-wealthy get what they need and want more efficiently and faster than ever.

Just one thought. We know that these old men don’t care about the future because in the future they are most likely dead.  They are old and they will die and this is one last fling before they go.  But what about the 40, 30, 20, 10 year olds in the world?

A world that run by people who lack humanity typically erodes healthy middle class.  The old men may not care, but without a middle class you have no stability.  If we look at countries who lost their middle class we are always looking at war.  Trump wants to spend a $1 Trillion dollars on improving the nuclear arsenal – without even getting intelligence briefings.   We wonder what Mnuchin, Gingrich, Tillerson, and Icahn think about that?  We hope to find out soon what vision these creators of the new gilded age have in mind for the US and the world. Hopefully they have a vision that goes beyond their own bank accounts.

Hillary Clinton is gone and many agree that her loss was due to due to a confluence of factors and successful efforts to sabotage her campaign. People just didn’t like her very much.  The FBI didn’t like her, Putin didn’t like her, the Public didn’t like her, even Democrats didn’t like her, her campaign staff fought about her, and the media certainly didn’t like her. She was a hard worker, but people didn’t warm up to her.  The warmed up to Trump.  They were amused by Trump.  No one was amused by Hillary, not even SNL. Her portrayal was often nasty and a bit weird. Trump’s portrayal was that of an all familiar American Uncle, reminiscent of Rob Reiner’s politically incorrect TV dad in the show “All in the Family.”

Not many people really know Hillary as she keeps very private and opens up to very few people, many of whom are also intensely private. The acclaimed and award-winning Investigative Reporter for the New York Times and The Washington Post, Ronald Kessler, sheds light on how she how Hillary Clinton was perceived by the service details who spent much time with her. It could explain why the Secret Service seemed so adamant that she ought not be president unless it was unavoidable:   Why the West was Lost – First Family Detail

Whatever we may think about Trump at least he is honest about being corrupt. Maybe that is a step forward?  Or, perhaps we will have Trump, the politically incorrect man and his politically incorrect friends run the country into the ground – honestly.

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Another Media Company bites the dust… another one down, another one down.

Huffington Post now committed to attracts News audiences.
Huffington Post now committed to attracts Fox News audiences.
Huffington Post under Verizon Board’s management now targets media toward Fox News Audiences

Today the Huffington Post had a live Facebook interview with Linda McMahon of Worldwide Wrestling Fame.  It seems confusing to people who used to think that the Huffington Post was a “liberal” media that reported on culture and politics.  It greatly delighted the new audiences of “Winners who are making America Great Again” through their vote for the Trump administration. This pivot toward the middle class and investors and the Democratic Party mistakenly calls the working class is understandable when you read AOL’s mission.  Code the company is all about code – measuring audiences, gaining audiences, redirecting audiences and undoubtedly listening in to audiences every move.  The CEO of Verizon was in charge of NSA’s largest listening program. Naturally, the number of people must expand, and the editorial has to be low brow indeed.

But why is that confusing?  If you keep up with the news, AOL purchased the Huffington Post years ago for $350,000,000 dollars.  Currently AOL serves 500,000,000 people globally.  AOL’s  mission, according to their website, is:

"We live in a time when culture defines code and code defines culture. Code is about the evolution of technology, the natural force of human ingenuity that moves culture forward. Culture is about the content experiences that make technology meaningful, enhancing our lives both online and off.  Culture + Code is our North Star — the philosophy that guides the way we organize, run and grow our business."

AOL has always been part of the world in which ethics don’t necessarily mean as much as earnings.  AOL started as a services provider that overcharged people. They still owe me close to $700 that were deducted from my Bank Account automatically.  I only could stop the monthly theft them by closing the Bank Account, back in 1996.

Then later they fancied themselves a “Unicorn” and “bought Time Inc.” during a time when every other media company paid millions for small tech companies, like AOL.  AOL purchased Time Inc. for $162 Billion, but allowed them to keep their name and their board of directors, and most of their managers. Only one of my very good techie media friends and I thought it was funny when they fell for that brilliant Time Inc. move. Most people were very impressed.  Needless to say, my funny friend and I, thought it was equally funny when AOL was spun out again from the company they had “bought.”

Their first success was more a matter of being at the right place at the right time and squeezing money out of their customers with vastly overpriced product offerings and illegally taking money that was not theirs. I still want my close to $700 dollars back, that AOL deducted from my bank account for several months after I cancelled their overpriced service.

After they were spun out from Time Inc. they went through a lot of reiterations and finally were led by a very good CEO, Tim Armstrong. Before joining the “Cable Business and Telecom” Industry he used to be a formidable media / new media guy.  Tim spent almost a decade at Google, where he served as President of Google’s Americas Operations and Senior Vice President of Google Inc. as well as serving on the company’s global operating committee. Tim started in his career by co-founding a newspaper in Boston, MA before moving into the Internet industry, where he has worked as a team member, investor or co-founder at many companies, including Starwave (sold to Disney / ESPN / ABC Internet Ventures), Snowball (IPO), Associated Content (sold to Yahoo), and Patch (sold to AOL). Tim has also been an active investor in the start-up community, both on and offline.

Tim Armstrong is smart, hard-working and has vision.  Living in the world where he is undoubtedly in a bit of a creative straight jacket, reporting to military, telecom and “healthcare” executives must be hard sometimes. He is channeling his “good man” energies by supporting an amazing amount of causes. He works with a Charter school, the United States Olympic & Paralympic Foundation, IAB Education Foundation, and more. Tim was honored by the Ad Council with their 60th Annual Public Service Award in 2013. The past few years must have challenged him, despite the amazing financial success he brought to his investors.  Buy-outs are always challenging.

He reported to a board that consisted a few old media execs and large corporate advertisers (Knight Ridder and PepsiCo, etc.) and of Eve Burton, a lawyer who grew her chops at Hearst Corporations and perhaps more importantly at a legal firm called Weil, which has extensive experience working with international media and entertainment companies and investors in transactions as diverse as mergers and acquisitions and related financings, cross-border transactions, spin-offs, IPOs, intellectual property licensing and counseling, royalty, debt and equity offerings, and restructurings. Their experience encompasses all areas of global media, publishing and telecommunications in matters of industry-wide significance. Their media and entertainment transactional practice involves particularly close collaboration among our M&A and Private Equity, Capital Markets and Technology & IP Transactions practices.

Essentially Weil attorneys are a team of globally connected mercenaries who wrote the book on Restructuring, Chapter 11, Buy Outs, with an army 1100 lawyers strong and an alumni group that stretches into 150 government agencies, financial sector, etc.  Weil is an amazingly knowledgeable firm that helps private equity investors make the most of their money and assists families keep their money while dancing knowledgeably around the laws, often having their Alumni’s create the laws.  Ms. Burton surely had a lot to do with the sale to Verizon since Weil advised Verizon on the $4.4 billion dollar buy-out.  What ana amazing return of investment.  Under Tim Armstrong’s leadership AOL grew quite a bit. Weil also has a prominent white-collar defense unit.

In 2012 the rest of the board of AOL consisted of actual media executives and officers in large corporations who were typically very large advertisers. Now he reports to a telecom based intelligence firm.

Down the Rabbit Hole we go.
Down the Rabbit Hole we go.

Verizon is run by an ex Naval Officer, Lowell C. McAdam, who most likely oversaw the creation of one of the most in-depth surveillance program for the NSA, initially at Pacific Telesis under the Bush Administration, and eventually via AirTouch, under the Obama Administration.   Other members of the board include:

Karl-Ludwig Kley, a German Industrialist, who held leading positions at Merck, E-On, Deutsche Bank, Bertelsmann, and now Lufthansa.  Martha Francis Keeth, an attorney who was previously employed as Independent Director by Peabody Energy Corp., Executive Vice President-Chemicals by Royal Dutch Shell Plc, President & Chief Executive Officer by Shell Chemicals Ltd., President & Chief Executive Officer by Shell Chemicals LP, and Chief Accounting Officer & Controller by Mobil Corp.

Shelley Archambeau is Chief Executive Officer of MetricStream, Inc., a leading provider of governance, risk, compliance and quality management solutions to corporations across diverse industries.  Prior to joining MetricStream in 2002, Ms. Archambeau served as Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President of Sales for Loudcloud, Inc., Blockbuster, and IBM. Interestingly Loudcloud is told to have been the server provider for the initial NSA surveillance program.

Mr. Mark Bertolini is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Aetna Inc., a Fortune 100 diversified healthcare benefits company.  Prior to assuming the role of Aetna’s CEO in 2010 and Chairman in 2011, Mr. Bertolini served as President from 2007, responsible for all of Aetna’s businesses and operations across the company’s range of healthcare products and related services, and as Executive Vice President and head of Aetna’s regional businesses before that.  He joined Aetna in 2003 as head of Aetna’s Specialty Products after holding executive positions at Cigna, NYLCare Health Plans and SelectCare, Inc.

Mr. Carrión has served for over 20 years as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Popular, Inc., a diversified bank holding company. He also served as a director of NYNEX Corporation, one of Verizon’s predecessor companies, from 1995 to 1997.  Mr. Carrión provides our Board with financial, operational and strategic expertise developed during his long tenure as Chairman and CEO of Popular, Inc. This experience, combined with his board service at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York from 2008 to 2016, also provides our Board with deep risk management expertise.

Verizon’s Executives are teaming with members of GSMA an organization that specializes in “intelligence” gathered about Mobile Customers around the globe.  Data Driven content will play a relatively minor part of the new Bot, AI, and machine learning world. From now on AOL will be all about the Code that holds, influences and tracks a global audience – legally.

So good-bye Huffington Post,and hello “Brave New World” Aldous Huxley Style.

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Death of our Democracy: The Carolinas show us how right wing tendencies will ruin us unless we stop their March toward a Dictatorship.

The Picture of a Racist
The Picture of a Racist

“Somebody had to do it,” Roof said of the slayings. He added that “black people are killing white people everyday… What I did is so minuscule compared to what they do to white people every day.”  He researched Charleston, scouted the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and then acted alone. Yes this time there is a guilty verdict by the jury of the avowed white supremacist, Dylann Roof, on his federal hate crimes on 33 charges of federal hate crimes resulting in death, obstruction of religion and firearms violations.

Meanwhile in North Carolina, Pat McCrory, a renowned right-wing GOP governor rolls back laws and passes laws that will prevent his democratic follower from ruling the state.  The Right Wing agenda is to wall in and to fortify their absolute power legally.  He and his fellow lawmakers, who control the General Assembly, introduced measures to end the governor’s control over election board’s requiring State Senate approval of any new governor’s cabinet members and to strip his power to appoint University of North Carolina trustees.  This is right-wing agenda in action to ease their white supremacist agenda.  If you can’t strip the people of their right to vote, we all know they tried.

A press release in November 2016 states:

"NCGOP leaders will discuss final Get Out The Vote efforts and encouraging Republican gains in final Early Voting numbers when compared to 2012. Republicans historically vote in far greater numbers on Election Day itself, these great strides in Early Voting when compared to 2012 show evidence of underestimated statewide ground game and deep volunteer base. Chairman Robin Hayes: “I am encouraged by the excitement and work ethic of our volunteers and the numbers don't lie—the Republican ground game is showing that motivated statewide volunteers and extensive ground game are better indicators of electoral success than the number of candidate-specific offices one has.

Despite this effort and one before to change local laws that the federal court deemed illegal, North Carolina GOP Gov. Pat McCrory, who signed the 2013 voter-ID law which a federal court rolled back this year for illegally suppressing African-American votes, claimed in November 2016 that massive voter fraud in his state swung the 2016 election against him, as McCrory’s campaign continues to challenge Democrat Roy Cooper’s thin lead two weeks after Election Day.

The example of voter suppression is right here.  Despite that it is perfectly legal to vote if you are temporarily absent.  If a piece of mail with an out-of-state address is not returned before the vote that vote does not qualify.  If there is another person with the same or similar name at an out-of-state address on Facebook, your vote no longer counts in North Carolina.  If you put your vote into the voting box, instead of giving it to a racist woman who deems you as rude, your vote no longer counts.  If there is a dead person of the same name in another county, your vote no longer counts. Check out this real document with these types of feeble attempts to change the voting results.

Now despite this arduous effort to control and influence the North Carolina voting results, the Democrat Roy Cooper won the election as governor.  Now the White Supremacist Offensive goes on the full on offensive.  The current General Assembly held an emergency meeting and stripped Governor Rye Copper of the powers to govern.  It affects and takes away his ability to govern the State Board of Elections, State Ethics Commission, State Board of Education and the regulation functions of the Secretary of State, and the choice to appoint the head of the Industrial Commission.  It is a well-known fact that the Koch Brothers aim to make North Carolina a model state of the private takeover of a government.

Rep. Nelson Dollar, a Republican from Cary, disputed the portrayal by opponents of the GOP strategy to cut the governor’s authority as a “coup.”  It is a coup and it is only the first of many in States that have a strong element of white supremacists.

We can learn a lot from North Carolina about how a Democracy can be demolished with a few strokes of the pen by white supremacist lawmakers.  Perhaps it is high time to read  For Whom the Bell Tolls again.

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Several right-wing investment bankers who hope to take over America will find it doesn’t work

Car Manufacturing Plan in 1939
Car Manufacturing Plan in 1939

The Investment Bankers, Energy Industry Execs and Politicians have always marched in lock step.  These days the “old guard” is fighting the “new guard” and while it is obvious to many that the “new guard” is winning, the old guard is going through a “fight to the death” thingy.  In a recent interview between Ezra Klein the CEO of Stripes, Patrick Collison, stated that the US Election was kind of a Primal Scream for the old guard.

It is unfortunate the older infrastructure companies are fighting innovation so much, despite the fact that it and always has been the best way to strengthen a society.  It doesn’t have to be that way.  But old men, especially old men who grew up wealthy and thought they would always be in charge, be the captain of their ship, their city, their country and yes, the world, they just have a hard time understanding that the Industrial Era is over.  Kaputt. Finished.  So to say. The factories and the financiers that brought their grandfathers such amazing wealth, so much wealth that they are still spending that money today, have been moved to countries that have a more affordable life style to allow people to “live off” menial labor.

Car Manufacturing Plant in 2016
Car Manufacturing Plant in 2016
Neither Change nor Letting Go is easy

All the posturing will not change the fact that this change from manual labor to robots guided by computers with fabulous microchips and brilliant software has happened.  Anger about it will not roll back time.  The old men who used their daddy’s and granddaddy’s money, which sometimes was earned by bankrolling energy deals to fund the enemy during wars, like the Scaife Mellon Money, or building Factories for Hitler like the Koch Brothers are not willing to bend their will to meet the needs of the middle classes nor the environment. Full Article

Despite dubious histories, some people adapted and learned, like young Ford.  His granddad helped Hitler set up car manufacturing in Germany, but he decided to work with the American people and for the people.  Ford was the only America Automaker firm that didn’t really need to be bailed out by the Obama administration.  Full Article

Corporate Social Responsibility is in and it is good for business

Apple, Google and Microsoft are part of the top 10 global firms and they are in the top 15 of Corporate Social Responsibility ranking as per Forbes.  Why is it that companies that have a higher level of Corporate Social Responsibility grow faster and better than companies in older industries where they lost the entrepreneurial spirit decline?

Psychological Mindset of the Wealthy

Why are the children of these very wealthy people so intent on damaging society by pushing their personal philosophies on them? The Scaife, DeVos, Koch Brothers?  Is it because they have low self-esteem?  Do they not feel loved by their fathers or mothers?   Most likely that is indeed the cause according to a detailed article written by Suniya Luthar, of Columbia University, published in the PMC :

Children of affluence are generally presumed to be at low risk. However, recent studies have suggested problems in several domains—notably, substance use, anxiety, and depression—and 2 sets of potential causes: pressures to achieve and isolation from parents. Recognizing the limited awareness of these issues, the objectives in this paper are to collate evidence on the nature of problems among the wealthy and their likely causes. The first half of the paper is focused on disturbances among affluent children and the second half is focused on characteristics of their families and neighborhoods. Widespread negative sentiments toward the rich are then discussed, and the paper concludes with suggestions for future work with families at the upper end of the socioeconomic spectrum. PMC

Maybe they are trying to make up for their guilt on how their parents obtain their staggering wealth and are trying to make it okay by vehemently agreeing that they are inspired by god, thinking that only they are meant to have access to the tree of knowledge, and only they have a right to decide who lives or dies. Just like their grand parents.

Superpowers need Bankers, Oil Barons and Industrialists

Christopher Higham, a British Author of History book, explained in Trading with the Enemy:

"Here is the extraordinary true story of the American businessmen and government officials who dealt with the Nazis for profit or through conviction throughout the Second World War: Ford. Standard Oil, Chase Bank and members of the State Department were among those who shared in the spoils. Meticulously documented and dispassionately told, this is an alarming story. At its centre is 'The Fraternity', an influential international group associated with the Rockefeller or Morgan banks and linked by the ideology of Business as Usual.

Higham starts with an account of the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland - a Nazi-controlled bank presided over by an American, Thomas H. McKittrick, even in 1944. While Americans were dying in the war, McKittrick sat down with his German, Japanese, Italian, British and American executive staff to discuss the gold bars that had been sent to the Bank earlier that year by the Nazi government for use by its leaders after the war. This was gold that had been looted from the banks of Austria, Belgium, and Czechoslovakia or melted down from teeth fillings, eyeglass frames, and wedding rings of millions of murdered Jews.
In the Past Oil-based fuels determined who ruled the sky and who could be a Superpower
As a highly developed industrial state, Germany was dependent even in peacetime on external sources for an adequate supply of oil. Even though Germany’s 1938 oil consumption of little more than 44 million barrels was considerably less than Great Britain’s 76 million barrels, Russia’s 183 million barrels, and the one billion barrels used by the United States, in wartime Germany’s needs for an adequate supply of liquid fuel would be absolutely essential for successful military operations on the ground and, even more so, in the air. For Germany, it was precisely the outbreak of the war in 1939 and the concurrent termination of overseas imports that most endangered its ability to conduct mobile warfare. Full Article
The Koch Empire

In the past old industrialists who ruled with wealth and provided access to large amount of money were in charge.  The onset of the digital age changed that power and clearly infuriated the old guard.

In 2004 the Koch Brothers founded and funded Americans for Prosperity, a right-wing political advocacy group and by 2009 it become a political powerhouse which funded and launched the Tea Party.  The brothers have a very strong and ideological commitment to world domination.  Their father was in construction and built a major oil refinery in Nazi Germany which was approved by directly Adolf Hitler in person.  While the Koch Brothers make a half-hearted attempt to deny this, there is a rather detailed book by Jane Meyer Dark Money.  And Hitler himself wanted to try Mellon Bank for Treason for going back on some of their promises toward the end of the war. Ironically it was one of the Mellons who negotiated a deal with the Allies that American Companies should not loose all their assets in Germany, but instead Germany should be bailed out.  Clearly this banker had a lot of pull with the US, UK and French governments.

Their new effort to “take over the world” perhaps rooted in the principles with which they were raised by their successful and highly disciplined father have prepared them.  According to the Center for Public Integrity, Americans for Prosperity spent a $122 million as it unsuccessfully attempted to defeat President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats in 2012.  $83 million was spent on communications, ads, and media.  Clearly the Koch Brothers commitment to spend money to influence Americans has rapidly increased since their humble beginnings in 2004.

In a Mother Jones article we find that the Koch Brothers’ meddling with the US Government, Education, the Election, Health Care has grown to an over $400 Million dollar endeavor.

While bankers, corporations and politicians are necessarily tied with each other, it will be a good idea for us to watch carefully, regularly and attentively who is meddling in unison.   Trump’s appointment of the CEO of Exxon, Betsy DeVos, the wife of Eric Prince, to the Department of Education, the appointment of an admitted Neo Nazi, Steve Bannon, combined with Michael Flynn’s relationship with Putin is of grave concern.

In the end this effort to overthrow the democracy will not work since the new economy and the American people are going to deal with this challenge successfully. No one will succeed in selling America out to the Russians, Chinese or any other aspiring super power.

 

 

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Do you remember how exciting it was to listen to Peter and the Wolf the first time?

Kids inspired by Music - Music Appreciations is a gift for the entire lifetime of a child.
Kids inspired by Music – Music Appreciations is a gift for the entire lifetime of a child.

Music is one of the genuine joys in life

Learning about music early in life will bring a lifetime of joy.  Developing a taste for dramatic stories, lovely music, the sound of such a variety of instruments allows kids to literally develop their brain.  So it is enjoyable and it is healthy.  Music enhances the quality of our lives.  This Black Friday Educents has an amazing offer of the top  musical stories for kids. All of them including:

  • Peter & the Wolf
  • The Nutcracker
  • Merry Pranks of Master Till
  • Carnival of the Animals
  • The Tortoise and the Hare
  • The Story of Swan Lake
  • Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel
  • My Name is Handel: The Story of Water Music
  • The Sorcerer’s Apprentice
  • Casey at the Bat
  • The Soldier’s Tale
  • Juanita the Spanish Lobster

You and the kids, the grandkids will enjoy this collection for many years to come.  Or, you can donate the collection to your favorite teacher.

Consider giving gifts that matter.
Consider giving gifts that matter.

Maestro Classics music recordings are of the highest audio quality of any children’s music product available.  In addition to the title track, each music CD contains tons of extras including guest artists performing in different musical genres, the title track with and without narration and educational tracks with information on the composer, piece and musical score designed to increase listening skills in children and also adults. With the purchase a Free curriculum guides in math, science, music, art, language arts, history and geography accompany each CD and are available.

http://www.educents.com/best-sellers#bettered
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