Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625

We hear a lot of words used to describe various political factions in the US. Most will say the US economic system is capitalist but is this just an illusion? Are we socialist? Have we been socialist for a long time? It seems to me, we have. In Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Socialism Is Everywhere

Just because a country’s economic system is socialist, does not mean it’s a tyranny. Denmark and Canada aren’t dictatorships. Singapore is a Socialist Market Economy. Places where ‘the people’ own or control the means of production. Most socialist countries these days enjoy democratic political systems.

Government and Non Profits Dominate State Economies

Americans think of themselves as capitalists. The thing is, the top three employers in my state are public institutions. Americans depend on social security, medicare, or medicaid ‘entitlements’. Home buyers get tax subsidies. We enjoy many tax deferred investment options. Farmers get subsidies. Public workers get pensions. All kinds of grants for education exist. Then there are the business subsidies and government contracts. Some popular business personalities receive billions in subsidies from the government. We’ll talk about it in Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Both Parties Support Socialism

Democrats complain about light rail projects running through their backyards, but support government programs because ‘It’s the right thing to do’. Republicans complain about big government unless it’s the military, support for their businesses, home mortgage tax credit, social security and 401K programs.

The Right Thing To Do

It’s true that many of these programs date back to the depression in the 1930’s. Also true that creation of these programs came with the best intentions. Whether we like it or not, government is deeply involved in our lives. Of course, what the government giveth, the government takeaway. We’ll talk about it in Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Classic Liberalism Is Forgotten

Republicans and Democrats argue the same side of the coin. Both are collectivists. Neither adhere to Classic Liberalism, a philosophy of limited government with the sole purpose of securing a maximum amount of individual liberty, property rights and free markets. While no political scientist would argue the US is Socialist maybe we should consider the possibility we are and have been for some time.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul and X Government Cars

Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625

 

 

 

 

 

 

Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621

Social Media Rules

More of us get our news from social media these days. Problem is most of the ‘news’ on social media doesn’t adhere to standards. Might feel better informed, but it’s hard to tell the difference between writing to a standard and propaganda. In Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621.

Internet Never Lies

People are in the habit of posting, sharing, liking and commenting on stories that support their point of view. People apparently believe anything published on the Internet that looks credible and comes from a site they visit often. We are floating on a sea of bad information.

Garbage In Garbage Out

News stories not written to standard assert things that turn out to be false. What’s worse, this kind of information poisons the discourse. Thoughts, insights and ideas based on bad information form into concrete assumptions and conclusions. Those conclusions drive people’s ideas about the world.

Propaganda and Manipulation

In Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621 I’ll provide some examples of story-lines that have not been proven. Most of the time these stories reinforce the right versus left thinking that ruins friendships and family ties. It’s what makes social media so angry and vitriolic.

There are standards. When you know the standards you can determine whether a writer lives up to those standards. Without standards we’re susceptible to a steady stream of propaganda and manipulation. It’s up to us to learn the standards and choose what we post, share, like and comment on accordingly.

Context and Perspective

A steady diet of Social Media, 24 Hour Cable News and Talk Radio is like junk food for the mind. This ruins a person’s ability to discern whether assertions are true or just opinion. When all we do is read stuff online, watch You Tube videos and listen to cable news and talk radio we lose the context of major stories. We don’t get the details to be able to master the issues. Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621  explains how to do that.

Getting Your News Groove Back-Podcast 621

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The Strange Case of Susan Rice and Other Mysteries-Podcast 619

Different Mysteries Left and Right

Susan Rice is the leaker. A political Flack. Running an operation to discredit the new president before he took office. Rice is at least guilty of a felony. At least that’s the story the right wing commentators are telling. In The Strange Case of Susan Rice and Other Mysteries-Podcast 619.

On the left it’s a different story. National security became a top concern after someone hacked the DNC computers. The Russians did it. The Russians did it because Trump did some kind of back room deal.

Opinion Is Not News

In America’s increasingly partisan media most people only want their beliefs confirmed. There’s no chance a political point of view different from my own can be right. Is there? A sea of information. Where opinion masquerades as fact and personalities beat the drums. We’re supposed to dance to their rhythm.

We Know Nothing…yet

Real Facts? In The Strange Case of Susan Rice and Other Mysteries-Podcast 619 we’ll see there are few facts. Russians hacking the DNC? Not so fast. Trump making deals behind the scenes with Putin? Obama ordering illegal surveillance of a president elect? Maybe. Maybe not.

Tin Foil Hats Anyone?

Evidence supporting claims of the right and left in this case is thin. All of it has the classic elements of conspiracy theory. So we’ll take a moment in The Strange Case of Susan Rice and Other Mysteries-Podcast 619 to detail the known facts. You can draw your own conclusions. Mystery lovers beware though. We’re along way from wrapping this one up in the final chapter.

Basic Framework

Is Susan Rice a political operative? What is the legal framework regarding National Security Agency intercepts. Why did the Trump administration leak NSA documents to a congressmen? What provoked the president to tweet he was ‘wiretapped’ in the first place? Is there a difference between a wiretap and an NSA intercept? Who gets to see intercepts? What are the significant legal justifications for executive orders in 2011 and 2017 allowing sharing in the first place. Lots of questions.

Where There’s Smoke

One thing is true. The dust kicked up by the Susan Rice story obscures real developments. North Korean Missiles. Syrian chemical weapons. Congressional action on the ACA, Tax Reform and Immigration. We’ll talk about it in The Strange Case of Susan Rice and Other Mysteries-Podcast 619.

Sponsored by Brush Studio and X Government Cars.

Draining The Swamp Harder Than Originally Thought-Podcast 617

When You’re Up To Your Ass In Alligators It’s Hard To Remember Your Original Objective Was To Drain The Swamp. The president has turned Freedom Caucus supporters into enemies. Republicans learn governing without principle is tough. In Draining The Swamp Harder Than Originally Thought-Podcast 617.

Republican Division Caused By The Left?

If you want to know the truth, so the saying goes, don’t have an opinion. Some republicans believe their division is caused by the political left.  What’s dividing republicans is a lack of adherence to principle.

Drinking From A Poisoned Well

One of the lines from the “Rime Of The Ancient Mariner” is, “Water Water, everywhere, nor any drop to drink”. The republican ship sits in a becalmed salt water sea, unable to drink, dying of thirst. Surrounded by a sea of information. Dying from a lack of wisdom. Talk about it in Draining The Swamp Harder Than Originally Thought-Podcast 617.

Details Details

North Korea? Budgets? Policy? Subsides? Federal Agencies and what they do? Foreign Relations? Whatever. Drain the swamp and call me when it’s over.

Goals and Principles

What is the goal of the modern republican party? Populism? I’ll tell you why the media’s term for republicans these says is more poison. What are the principles of the GOP these days? Why did you vote? Was there a reason behind why you got involved in politics in the first place?

House Divided

A political party that follows too many threads and calls them ‘principles’ is a party that can easily be divided. Churchill saved the west with one idea in mind. Never Give Up.

Controlling Means of Production

It seems like America is living in a socialist construct. Republicans and Democrats have consistently voted for community control through direct ownership or regulation of the means of production. Yes, Republicans and Democrats have built and empowered the surveillance state, conducted the wars, added regulations, let out the contracts.

Dependency

These days, dependence on the state isn’t just for the urban poor. Corporations and individuals are widely dependent on the government for all kinds of payments, contracts, subsidies and opportunities.

Freedom Isn’t Free

Freedom is a radical idea. We have less and less of it these days. If you want a party that promotes freedom more is required of you than repeating slogans and wearing hats. Freedom asks more than supporting a personality. Join me in Draining The Swamp Harder Than Originally Thought-Podcast 617.

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Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616

In Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616. March 29th, 2017. Noon Pacific Time. Burning Man 2017 tickets on sale. Already did my ‘burner’ profile. 2 weeks ago waited on line to register for the ticket sale. Third year in a row. All out for tickets to the biggest party in the universe. Out in the Nevada desert. August 27th to September 4th.

Gonna Get My Burning Man Tickets!

Tick tock. One minute to 12 Pacific. Count it down. Here we go. This won’t take long. I won’t have to cancel the big client meeting at three in the central time zone. I’ll get on. Get my tickets. Smooth as silk. A friction free transaction. Forty-Five minutes later I’d canceled the meeting. Oops, tickets sold out. In Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616.

Scalpers

Quick Internet search. Stub Hub has tickets at double the price. Frustrated. Angry. Must have done something wrong. Maybe I should register for the STEP program like last year. Yeah. Or maybe call some ‘burners’ in Chicago. If you ingratiate yourself with the ‘burner’ community you might be able to score some tickets from someone who isn’t going to use theirs.

Jeff Bezos Party of 20? Come right in

Remember. Tickets to burning man in the general sale are 400 plus dollars and nearly 100 dollar for a vehicle pass. There’s a final sale coming up. Those tickets are 1200 dollars. What’s under my skin is the way Burning Man is sold. Over Sold and Under Delivered. Clearly there’s a lot of people who want to go and can’t get tickets. Fix it. Find out about my experience trying to buy tickets in Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616

We’re Hippies. Really rich hippies

This year Burning Man will gross 43 million dollars from ticket sales alone. They say It’s something you need to experience. A city in the desert. A culture of possibility. A network of dreamers and doers. Oh wait that’s the commercial. Reality is you’ve been waiting for 30 minutes for the kid with dreadlocks who can’t remember whether you ordered a strawberry smoothie or an emerald peanut butter…for the third time.

Not Radically Inclusive

Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616. Burning Man still sucks because if you’re wealthy enough to buy a thousand dollar ticket from some ticket reseller, which I am told Burning Man ‘doesn’t endorse’, you’re a ‘burner’. Part of a ‘radically inclusive experience’. Yeah. No. “A citizen of the worldview that is Burning Man. May it be encountered everywhere”. It won’t.

Drive a Maybach Motor Home? Coming out from Santa Rosa for the week to do some acid? Like the old days before, you know, all the corporate stuff. You’re in! Welcome Burners. And all your cash. A unique and distinctive culture awaits people like Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, but not us working stiffs.

Welcome To The French Revolution

Ten principles for Burning Man: Radical Inclusion, Gifting, Decommodification (which basically means no sponsors), Radical Self Reliance, Radical Self Expression (although any and all media ‘projects’ have to be pre approved), and on and on. It reads like the French Revolution’s ‘Rights of Man’ Declaration. You know the one where the peasants are crushed and everyone ends up living through Thermidor II.

Stupid Rules At The Radical Burning Man Festival

And the rules. Don’t run that noisy generator at night. If your truck is old bring plywood to catch the oil dripping from that nasty crankcase. Watch out for the undercover cops checking up to see that you’re not trafficking. Be careful of your carbon footprint. Oh by the way, Burning Man has a bigger carbon footprint on average than the dirtiest of the dirty polluters. Don’t worry about that though. Nothing to see here folks. Move along.

Burning Man is a symbol of the possibilities of Silicon Valley. That’s why I wanted to go. A temporary society built on the ‘No Rules’ Punk and Anarchist pathos. Sadly the Burning Man approach to customers is basically ‘so long suckas’. So yes. Sadly, Burning Man is in fact a symbol of the possibilities of Silicon Valley.

America We Have A Problem

Yep All this tech. We’re On It! Really good at customer service. We give you an experience. We’re here for the environment. We use cloth bags. We Care. The truth is you wait on the phone or on line for service for hours. You can’t get a seat at the Genius Bar and they’re just going to tell you to buy a new iPad. No one cares about your problem because you’re not Jeff Bezos. Steve Jobs is turning over in his grave.

I thought these burning man guys were really smart savvy artists and computer geniuses. Turns out they’re just a bunch of idiots. Despite all the tools available they can’t figure out how to create an event with a seamlessly positive experience for people from the first contact and ticket sale, to the event itself, to heading home happy after its over. And then there’s the police state thing. Customer satisfaction? Oh wait. That would be capitalism. Let’s talk about it in Why Burning Man Still Sucks 2017-Podcast 616.

Yes, I know this is sacrilege but…Sponsored by X Government Cars.

 

 

 

Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal

In Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal, everything comes to an end. True in life. True in politics. Voters sent Republicans and Donald Trump to Washington in 2016. One of if not the most important issues was repealing Obama Care. On Friday, March 24th 2016 the president and the republican party made a colossal mistake and broke a major campaign promise to voters.

A Waterloo. A Donnybrook

An ill-conceived ‘repeal and replace’ bill never made it to the floor of the House for a vote. First the President blamed this donnybrook on the republican Freedom Caucus. Ultimately Trump blamed democrats. Blame anyone or anything. Never yourself. Now the president says he will court democrats. My reaction in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

They’re not listening

The republican rank and file suddenly wonders what happened. Fed a steady stream of fairy tales from the right wing media they thought President Trump had one of the most effective and productive first 100 days in history. What happened? A new president who claimed the government should be run like a business was taught a very important lesson. The United States Federal government is most decidedly not a business. Find out why in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

Rich Moderate Businessmen Rule

Members of Congress and the Senate have their own ideas about things. Members of Congress and the Senate do not work for the President. The president does not tell members what to do. Rather than lobby effectively, president bluster spent the days leading up to the vote blowing the horn of a semi tractor and bellowing to the press he was a team player. Except when he isn’t.

Is The GOP dying?

This podcaster made three predictions before the election. First, that New York Developer Donald Trump could win the presidency. Second, that an Obama Care repeal would not pass. Third, Trump would destroy the republican party. Two of those predictions have now come true. The third depends on what republican voters do now.

They’re Not Listening

Why don’t they do what we tell them, they cry. The fact is republican congressmen and senators cannot rely on any kind of support structure from the rank and file or grassroots republican rank and file. They don’t do what ‘you’ tell them to do because ‘you’ don’t do anything. A party founded on principle today has no principle and no rudder. What controls the republican party? Rich businessmen who support moderate religious republicans.

Suddenly Trump’s a Democrat?

Whether you’re talking about the US Congress or the ‘republican’ Minnesota legislature, you vote one way, and you get something completely different. Now you have a ‘republican-populist’ president ready to make common cause with the progressive democratic party because he’s miffed at the Freedom Caucus? Principle. There’s that nasty little word again. Let’s talk about it in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

It’s A New Day When YOU Say

Find out what you need to do to actually make these politicians do what you want. It’s not pretty. It’s not fun saying it. The failure to repeal the ACA is a political mistake of titanic proportions. It will go down in history along side ‘Read My Lips’ and the Isolationist republicans before World War II. All things must pass. Maybe its time for a new day to dawn.

Time to look to ourselves rather than personalities. In Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

Sponsored by X Government Cars.

 

 

Podcast 611-Define Political Progress

When it comes to politics these days noise is the norm. The latest outrage drowns out talk about political progress. Voters in 2016 made their choices for a reason. Not too early to ask whether the politicians are making progress toward addressing those reasons. We talk about it in Podcast 611-Define Political Progress.

ObamaCare Repeal

Number one issue on the campaign trail. Bogged down in congress already. Republicans wanted a full repeal of the ACA. New GOP plan isn’t a full repeal. President Trump has already endorsed it. What happened to promises of a full repeal?

Economy

Somewhere around 96 million people are out of the workforce. Need to create 375,000 new jobs a month for several months to get those people back in the work force. For years we were less than impressed with a quarter of a million jobs each month. Economic growth has been promised. In Podcast 611-Define Political Progress.

Cutting Federal Budget

Smaller government? Proposed budget cuts are accompanied with proposals to shift money to defense. Does this reduce the size of government? A hiring freeze can be considered progress. Corporate tax reductions can be progress. However making up corporate tax reductions with higher taxes somewhere else doesn’t cut the budget.

Foreign Policy and Military Spending

Resurgent Russia. Rising China. Political changes in Turkey. Expanding NATO. Cyber Threats. US troops in Iraq and Syria. ISIS. Terror. Climate Change. How will reducing foreign aid and increasing military spending address these concerns? What should the foreign policy of the US be? It’s all in Podcast 611-Define Political Progress.

Too Early?

First benchmark on progress made by a majority republican government in the United States. Did you vote for republicans? Are they doing what you wanted them to do?

Sponsored by X Government Cars and Ryan Plumbing of Saint Paul.

 

Podcast 610-Davis & Davis Discuss Right Wing Political Correctness

Republican “Political Correctness” Is Now A Thing

Right wingers are thinkers. Open to new ideas. Right? Nope. There’s a new kind of “Political Correctness“. “Patriotic Correctness”. If you question right wing ideas and conclusions? Present a source not ‘approved’? Say something not part of the right wing mainstream? You’ll receive the same pressure to tow the line usually reserved for the left. In Podcast 610-Davis & Davis Discuss Right Wing Political Correctness.

Republican Win

Republicans are happy about their victory in 2016. Makes sense. Putting on blinders can be politically dangerous though. Andrew Davis is a film maker and reporter in Los Angeles. Bob Davis is a podcaster living in Minneapolis and Saint Paul. Father and son have discovered right wing political correctness at about the same time. Alex Nowrasteh of CATO is the subject of this father and son podcast. In Podcast 610-Davis & Davis Discuss Right Wing Political Correctness

Social Media

Say something that doesn’t support Trump? Tweet something raining on the republican parade? Insults and propaganda follow. Furthermore, ask for proof or supporting arguments you’ll get only right-wing approved links and comments. Seems like liberty people used to be about open discussion. Sadly, not any more apparently. It isn’t easy to talk about. We have to talk about the hard things. In Podcast 610-Davis & Davis Discuss Right Wing Political Correctness.

Alternate History

Rational right? Party of Reagan and Ron Paul? These days the right has it’s own media. It’s own history and narratives. Ask a question? Disagree? You’re a ‘democrat’, ‘communist’, ‘marxist’. Facts? Principles? Proof? Meme. Picture. Link. There! Shut up. These are reactions usually reserved for the political left. In conclusion we wonder what happened.

Socialist Construct For 70 Years

We have had big government since the 1930’s. Seems like we’re fighting over different sides of the same coin. If Patriotic Correctness demands loyalty to the right wing version of big government how does the right present an alternative? In conclusion, political correctness leads to tyranny. Especially relevant is the fact that it isn’t easy to point out. If you’re on the political right though, you have to point it out. Because most people are good, maybe it will do some good. In Podcast 610-Davis & Davis Discuss Right Wing Political Correctness.

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Podcast 607-Twila Brase-CCHF-ObamaCare Repeal-Real ID

Top issues in the coming weeks. Real ID. Repealing ObamaCare. President of the Citizens Council for Health Freedom Twila Brase joins The Bob Davis Podcast Radio Show 68 this week in Podcast 607-Twila Brase-CCHF-ObamaCare Repeal-Real ID. Your issue is health care and privacy? Twila Brase is a nationally recognized expert on these issues.

Real ID

Minnesota Republicans have once again proved themselves to be slaves of the Chamber of Commerce or ‘The Chambers Of Italian Fascism‘. Republican legislators are pushing Real ID. Real ID is a national ID Card. “You won’t be able to get on an airplane without one”. “You won’t be able to visit your sons and daughters on military bases without one”. “48 states have already approved Real ID”. Not True. Twila lays out the real deal in Podcast 607-Twila Brase-CCHF-ObamaCare Repeal-Real ID.

ObamaCare Repeal. Maybe.

Since 2010 repealing the ACA has been the centerpiece of the GOP campaigns. Republicans control Congress and the Executive Branch. Suddenly they’re singing a new song. Repeal. Maybe. Repair. Reform. Twila lays out the complex effects of ObamaCare. She’ll tell you why tax credits and maintaining medicaid benefits won’t fix it. The culprits are Managed Care and government regulation.

Breaking Their Promise

Promises on the campaign trail. Demands to repeal ObamaCare. Now its more complicated than they thought. Now Republicans have a secret plan to ‘fix’ it. Broken promises can be a tough sell come election day. Longer it takes. Closer we get to election 2018. The more wobbly they get. President Trump included.

Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul, X Government Cars and Hydrus Performance.

 

Podcast 605-Bannon’s Fourth Turning

Steve Bannon and The Fourth Turning

The President’s co chief of staff is obsessed with a book called The Fourth Turning. Podcast 605-Bannon’s Fourth Turning discusses reaction to the idea someone as powerful as Steve Bannon would formulate a political philosophy on a pop history/sociology best seller. The Fourth Turning co-author the late William Strauss was a playwright, theater director and lecturer. Co-author Neil Howe is a best selling author and consultant. Strauss and Howe coined the term ‘Millennial’. Both men described themselves as Amateur Historians. The Fourth Turning, Bannon’s apparent zeitgeist, was published in the early 1990’s. See a video of the two authors appearing on C-Span’s BookNotes here.

Chaos Dead Ahead

The book some say Steve Bannon has based his political philosophy on postulates every 80 years the United States is marked by crisis and chaos. Business Insider says Bannon believes the United States will soon reach our climax conflict and that Trump is in the White House to usher it in.

Is the United States in a Political Crisis?

Politicians tend to magnify the political challenges they face. Reporters play along. Divided since the beginning crises of one kind or another have been a way of life in the US. It’s very American to think of the government with distrust and apprehension. Especially when, as the saying goes, the legislature is in session. Are we in a political crisis?

Want To Know The Future?

Crisis will find the Trump administration. The response to crisis is what will determine it’s fate. Theories predicting ‘the’ crisis are questionable. Free Will is a gift to Human Beings. We think and act voluntarily. We can be the authors of our own stories. Controversy surrounding the Fourth Turning and Steve Bannon’s embrace of the theory encapsulates much of what is wrong with our politics. In Podcast 605-Bannon’s Fourth Turning I’ll tell you why.

One Day At A Time

Living one day at a time doesn’t mean avoiding passionate views. We do not remain passive and uninvolved but do the best we can with what we have. We will never know exactly what tomorrow may bring. Isn’t that the fun part of life?

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