Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Governor Nixon is afraid of his own people.

November 11, 2014
By Jim Salter
WELDON SPRING, Mo. (AP) — Police (click here) will work to protect peaceful protesters after a grand jury's decision in the Michael Brown shooting case is announced, but those who cross the line into violence will face consequences, Missouri Gov.Jay Nixon warned Tuesday.
More than 1,000 police officers have received special training ahead of a decision expected later this month about whether Ferguson Officer Darren Wilson, who is white, will face criminal charges for fatally shooting Brown, 18, who was black and unarmed....
The protesters will no doubt want to bring attention to the injustice of the death of Michael Brown, Jr. But, parents of unjustly dead young black men have already moved to seek understanding in the human rights violation.
November 11, 2014
Brandie Piper
GENEVA – The parents (click here) of Ferguson teenager Michael Brown have testified before the United Nations Committee Against Torture. Brown's parents are urging international human rights experts to help make changes in the United States. Committee members will review their concerns and if they deem it necessary, determine if recommendations need to be made about how matters are being addressed in Ferguson, Missouri.
The UN Committee Against Torture reviews the federal government's compliance with the Convention Against Torture. The convention against torture is an international human rights treaty that outlines specific guidelines to prevent governments from taking part in any kind of torture, or cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment....
The wager Putin believes he has to play is energy dependence. It is winter. Putin believes he can simply walk all over sovereignty of Ukraine and put missiles in the middle of NATO because of energy issues in Europe and Ukraine. 

That is a ridiculous gamble and he has to be stopped. Energy issues are completely different than nuclear capacity missiles. If Europe wants to 'wait and see' than I don't believe the USA has to be vigilant to a NATO outcome.

I am sure Norway has plenty of capacity for Europe, they have to be asked. Norway's sovereign waters could easily become another front as well. There were the fly overs with drones in France and military maneuvers adjacent to Europe's borders. He is attempting to weaken resolve because no one wants war. The 'mind tricks' have to stop and real military strength has to take over. This is crazy to believe Putin isn't going to take on Europe. He and China both for all we know. 

October 19, 2014
By Peter Walker

...Sweden’s military has spent three days (click here) scouring the waters off Stockholm for what has so far been officially described only as “foreign underwater activity”. However, intelligence briefings to local newspapers suggest a Russian submarine might have had mechanical problems while on a secret mission in the region.
In scenes reminiscent of the 1970s and 80s – when neutral Sweden regularly hunted for Soviet spy submarines in the Baltic Sea around the capital – 200 service personnel were mobilised along with helicopters, minesweepers and an anti-submarine corvette fitted with stealth-type anti-radar masking.
The operation began late on Friday following what Sweden’s armed forces said was a reliable tipoff about something in the Stockholm archipelago, which has 30,000 islands and rocky outcrops around which a submarine could lurk. The officer leading the operation declined to give more details, saying only that there had been no armed contact....

Put unlimited war in the middle of this and what comes of this "new power agreement?" Either Beijing is attempting to lull the USA to sleep or China is scared silly about Putin and Russia.

November 9, 2014
By Jane Perlez

BEIJING — When Xi Jinping (click here) stood next to Hillary Rodham Clinton and addressed a high-powered lunch audience on the seventh floor of the State Department nearly three years ago, he was still China’s vice president and only the heir apparent to the Communist Party leadership. But even during that visit he spoke expansively of forging a “new type of great power relations” with the United States....

Now that Mr. Xi is president and has consolidated power as China’s undisputed leader, that phrase has taken on new significance....

There is nothing like launching short range nuclear missiles into Syria and Iraq while USA troops are deployed there. The Crimea is located in an area where short range nukes could be launched throughout Europe and into the Middle East.

President Obama has a reason to talk to Putin now. He is completely dissolving any reasonable adherence to the original treaty with Ukraine and the West.

I don't believe it is too early to state we have another Cuban Missile Crisis. I don't know what the leaders of NATO are thinking at this point, but, they have to act to match Putin's aggression. That would mean cooperation with Ukraine to stabilize it's border with Russia and end the migration of deadly serious weapons into Crimea.

November 11, 2013
NAPLES, Italy — NATO’s top commander (click here) says Russia is reinforcing its bases in disputed Crimea, but there is no clear assessment of whether that includes deployment of nuclear weapons.
U.S. Gen. Philip Breedlove said Tuesday that Russian forces “capable of being nuclear” are being moved to the Crimean Peninsula, but NATO doesn’t know if nuclear weapons are actually in place.
Breedlove also told news agencies at a NATO base near Naples that about eight Russian battalion task groups have been sighted along the border between Ukraine and Russia. Russian-backed separatists have been fighting Ukrainian soldiers in eastern Ukraine despite a cease-fire proclaimed weeks ago....

It doesn't matter if 'the real nuclear thing' is being moved into Crimea, it is an overt threat to Europe and puts Russian missiles right in the middle of NATO. This type of blatant aggression cannot be allowed. NATO has to seek permission from Ukraine to move it's military assets into the country. Putin has to be stopped. 

Does it risk war? You betcha. But, war is obviously what the Russia President has bargained for. It is best to mount an offensive with conventional weapons now while it is only begun in Ukraine than risk nuclear exchanges later. The interceptors will have to go into the region and the conventional weapons of NATO will have to be deployed to stabilize the border with Russia. I don't see there is a choice. Putin has stepped over the line. The sanctions were to bring back stability without war, but, this is an overt threat that sanctions are meaningless.

No can be a dove when vultures are gathering.

Zoos across the country today have opened their gates for free admission to Veterans and their families.

November 11, 2014
By Brian Stallard

The Pittsburgh Zoo (click here) is being investigated by the USDA after People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) filed a complaint against the zoo concerning its treatment of captive elephants. The animal rights organization has focused its complaint on the use of dogs to herd the elephants around....

The question is do the elephants experience stress from dog herding. Is there potential for danger to the dogs and their handlers if the elephants react badly?
Basically, is everyone safe in these practices?

Some time ago the Pittsburgh Zoo did experience a fatality. Some of that probably enters into the decision to use dogs.

Tuesday, November 19, 2002
By Ann Belser and Marylynne Pitz, Post-Gazette Staff Writers

On mornings when weather permits, (click here) elephants at the Pittsburgh Zoo are brought out of their enclosure to walk with their keepers around the grounds.

Yesterday, two keepers were about halfway around the zoo with a 20-year-old mother elephant and her 3-year-old female calf when the mother elephant stopped near the Northern Shores Cafe building.
When the keeper urged her to move along, the elephant butted him and pinned him to the ground with her head, crushing him.

The trainer, Mike Gatti, 46, an elephant keeper at the zoo for nearly six years, was taken to UPMC St. Margaret, where he was pronounced dead....

It is unclear that using dogs will result in a safety zone rather than an antagonistic zone. This is a very different methods in caring for elephants by a zoo. I don't recall hearing about this method before, at least not with elephants.

This was four years ago. Obviously the elephants were not a problem then and the people enjoy them with their children.

USA GDP vs China GDP

See the small dip in the USA line on the graph, that was 2008. See how brief that dip existed. That was the small business community in the USA recovering the USA economy.

China's economy has no blip at the same point in 2008 the USA has. Why? Because China's practices supply side economics and when there are recessions in places like the USA, China already has ready products to pick up where the USA recovery was beginning. We know for a fact the big box stores never even felt the Great Recession because their products are cheap.

Now the GDP is $16.8 Trillion in the USA. Where does the wealth of those $16.8 trillion go in the USA?

Now, the income and wealth inequality occurs in huge and measurable ways because the bottom 80% or so never reap the rewards of their labor while they are the people that produced the goods and GDP.

The TPP wants to redistribute the wealth in the USA's GDP depriving the Working Poor and Middle Class in their claim to wealth.

...In 2007, (click here) the share of after-tax income going to the top 1 percent hit its highest level (17.1 percent) since 1979, while the share going to the middle one-fifth of Americans shrank to its lowest level during this period (14.1 percent).
Between 1979 and 2007, average after-tax incomes for the top 1 percent rose by 281 percent after adjusting for inflation — an increase in income of $973,100 per household — compared to increases of 25 percent ($11,200 per household) for the middle fifth of households and 16 percent ($2,400 per household) for the bottom fifth....

This article is from 2007 at the brink of the beginning of the Great Recession. Even before the Great Recession the wealth distribution in the USA was way out of balance.

That pie chart is actually worse today and promises to continue getting worse if the TPP is invoked.

The problem with any trade agreement is that it adds competition to the American market place. In the 1970s it was the Japanese car companies. As the population in the USA has grown and more quality is demanded from car manufacturing the competition became more level and today there is healthy competition. But, that competition came after the collapse of the industry in the USA and after it had survived the trade assaults of the past.

“This isn’t a business as usual recovery (click here) for the United States – the pace of growth is slow in historical perspective,” OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría said during the Survey launch in Washington with Jason Furman, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors.

“Steadfast action is needed to implement the reforms that will bolster the economy’s growth potential and make it more inclusive and greener. In this regard, I particularly welcome President Obama’s recent announcement of concrete measures to cut carbon emissions.”

What this report identifies is the USA's late development of clean energy. The cost of the climate crisis is holding back the best economic outcomes of the USA.

When realizing the amount of RECOVERY and rebuilding the USA chronically is undertaking adds to the COST of products and trade in the USA. If there were trouble free economics that would be inaccurate to state.

Yes, there was climate distrubance before in Earth and USA history, however, the degree at which that disturbance occurs today in 2014 places the USA at a disadvantage right from the start in it's economic growth. The climate crisis is more than a drag on the USA economy, it is now impacting the USA national debt and inhibits THE BEST of the USA economy to be realized.

Eventually, the RECOVERY from the climate crisis in the USA will outpace military spending annually.

It is a foregone conclusion that the more money in the hands of the Middle Class the greater the economic growth of any economy. What happened in the beginning of 2014 that altered the economic growth of the USA?

...After spiking (click here) in February and early March, prices have remained above $4 per MCF. In the past month, they've even ticked higher.
And the companies that supply natural gas are benefiting.
For example, oil and gas giant ExxonMobil recently announced its average U.S. natural gas sale price increased 49% last quarter. The price rise helped the company beat earnings estimates despite a drop in total oil and gas production....

What natural climate structure (and yes it is a gaseous structure) destabilized because of the lack of ice in the Arctic Ocean AND the movement of equatorial warm air to the Arctic Circle.

What natural climate structure is now returning frigid temperatures AGAIN to the lower latitudes of Earth?

Both years were experiencing the Polar Vortex displacement because of the hot air transport from the Equator to the Arctic Circle while temperatures over the Arctic Ocean have risen higher than any other location on Earth.

The Polar Vortex results in lower latitudes due to the heat transfer systems this blog has charted since October 3, 2002. The Arctic Ocean no longer has enough ice to 'counter' the heat transfer from the Equator, therefore as the hot air comes over the frigid air, it displaces the frigid air to lower latitudes.

Those actual and valid physics results DIRECTLY into economic shifts in the USA. When monies leave the hands of the American Middle Class it has a drastic outcome in other economic sectors. While Wall Street energy companies are happier than a pig in shit, the rest of the economy experiences reductions in economic gains. This is EXACTLY what OECD is referring to. The USA is not consistent in it's economic stability to qualify as a high income partner globally. The climate crisis is why and Inhofe is nothing more than a story teller for whomever wants to listen at FOX News.

Bill Cassidy has just accepted the endorsement of Bobby Jindal. Bad idea.

As governor, Bobby Jindal, instituted "The Flat Tax" (three categories for personal taxes and fiive for business) and Cassidy wants to make it a national strategy. It removes taxes from business and the wealthy and places it on the Middle Class, Working Poor and Poor. It puts a tax liability on every individual equally.

While that sounds like a democratic principle it is proving to be a disaster to the states that implemented it, including Louisiana.

November 10, 2014
By Julia O'Donoghue
...In an analysis of last year's state revenue, (click here) Albrecht has also called Louisiana's flat personal income tax collection worrisome overall. "Sustained growth in the overall revenue base requires sustained growth in [personal income and sales] taxes, and sustained growth has yet to be exhibited by either of them," he wrote in October.

State Treasurer John Kennedy has also sounded the alarm about state revenue collections possibly being lower than expected. His office is moving money around significantly more to cover basic expenses because not as much state income has come into Louisiana's general fund coffers at this point in the year.

At the end of October, the state general fund -- which pays for services like health care and higher education -- was running a $925 million deficit. Kennedy said this is the highest October deficit the general fund has run in at least five years, and $268 million more than last year's deficit tally....

The Flat Tax removes income from the poor and increases wealth to those with the most income. Realizing the best economy has to be attractive to all the people to move goods and services, the added burden of higher taxes on the Working Poor only reduces their ability to provide for their family. They have less income after payroll taxes are removed.

A system that applies the same tax rate to every taxpayer regardless of income bracket. A flat tax applies the same tax rate to all taxpayers, with no deductions or exemptions allowed. Supporters of a flat tax system propose that it would give taxpayers incentive to earn more because they would not be penalized with a higher tax bracket. In addition, supporters argue that a flat tax system is fairer because it imposed the tax on all taxpayers regardless of income.

The ideology of The Flat Tax depends on the ability of people to move up in income to have a better life. The ideology does not allow for the 'ability' of people to move up in income. It is just another scheme by the wealthy for the wealthy. It has nothing to do with increasing upward movement of the Working Poor. The Flat Tax is an ideology and that is where it should remain.

Just to get the record straight, Louisiana under Jindal ranks in the mid 40s out of 50 states for good business climate. In isolating just the southern states Louisiana ranks first in offering a business climate. That says a lot about the climate for businesses in the south, but, defines how Louisiana has become isolated for the country's methods of business and upward movement of citizens. Cassidy wants to expand this method to the entire country to bring Louisiana into a better rating. He wants to alter the success of other states in the country to improve the overall business environment for Louisiana. Cassidy is wrong for Louisiana and definitely wrong for the country. 

The correct incentive for southern states, including Louisiana is to reach for higher values and improve employment and pay to their citizens, hence, increasing their economic outcomes. It is wrong to employ lower standards of quality simply to make the numbers look more attractive to business. It is ridiculous.

The states that have instituted the Medicaid expansion (click here) have also seen growth in employment. That growth is probably for several reasons, including the physical health of the work force, but mostly because medical bills are now paid adding circulating capital to the economy. People have more disposal income. Louisiana never accepted the Medicaid expansion for political reasons and it shows, both, in income and business climate.

Normal tax structure looks like this:

Senator Landrieu has an interesting view of the problems caused by the petroleum industry.

April 7, 2014
By Lauren McGaughy
..."We're already tied up in a lawsuit," (click here) she added, referring to the fight over RESTORE Act funds for Gulf Coast states after the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill. "So forgive me for having a little it of a negative views about lawsuits sometimes because you can never get it out of court. We need money on the ground right now building, you know, building the levees that we need."...

To say she is frustrated with the legal wrangling currently facing the people of Louisiana over the Deepwater Horizon Disaster is an understatment. She isn't interested in abolishing the rights of any party to sue for damges, but, she wants things to change NOW not a decade from now to bring about a better quality of life for all the people. 

She wants to institute a strong revenue sharing paradigm. What that means is Louisiana will receive what can be considered royalties from the petroleum industry. In other words, the states will receive monies from current leases to bring about a better outcome for Louisiana. A royalty to state governments would help the Gulf Coast states immensely and realizing the need for revenues to Louisiana it would solve a lot of problems.

Louisiana has the highest domestic violence rate in the United States.

November 19, 2013
By Alex Woodward
Two glass doors (click here) and an elevator. Those are the only barriers Mary Claire Landry wants families to see between the chronic violence at home and resources Landry and dozens of others make available to them inside the New Orleans Family Justice Center (FJC).
  A few blocks from the Superdome and a few floors above the Amtrak and Greyhound station, security buzzes people in from the building's lobby through a second set of doors and up an elevator. The FJC office overlooks the U.S. Postal Service Tower's side drive on Loyola Avenue, where the sound of trucks being loaded rumbles over the faint ringtones from FJC desk phones. FJC staff members answer with a hushed, calm series of questions: Where are you? When did that happen? Did you call the police?
  Landry, FJC's executive director, points out the offices that circle the lobby: legal services, a large conference room, children's services, mental health counselors, domestic violence detectives from the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) and her office.
  "It just takes a tremendous amount of effort to let people know what we have here," Landry says....

To begin with Senator Landrieu has a long history of serving in government. And she has seen presidents come and has seen presidents go and in no way can be connected to any particular President as a weak representative for Louisiana. 

She knows Louisiana well and advocates for the people repeatedly, bringing resources to them.

Mary Landrieu has worked the hardest of any Louisiana's elected officials to bring services and notable change for women, children and families:
- May 1999 - Voted no on killing restrictions on violent videos to minors
- 1998 - she wrote a book "Mothers Make Good Senators, too." 
- August 2000 - Give parents tools to balance work and family
- April 2003 - Small business loans for child care businesses.
- March 2008 - Supports adoption and foster care reform 
- March 2008 - Called for a White House Conference on Children and Youth
- January 2013 - More funding and services for victims on domestic violence.

What kind of bull is in your china shop, Angus, Hereford, Texas Long Horn?

China is literally the bull in the china shop.

...But, (click here) China's competitive advantage is to some degree based in it's inadequate governance....

Or better said, the bully in the china shop.

China is like the Republican Tea Party, they have so much clout in it's potential to destroy the USA's quality of life they are ungovernable. 

When Germany exports BMWs to the USA there are specific standards for safety, materials, etc. that has to be met. They are called import standards. Germany, being a First World Country, has absolutely no problem meeting and in many instances exceeding those standards.

I am only using Germany as an example. What makes Germany a good trading partner is that the quality of their goods come from a country well governed with values similar to those of the USA.

What has occurred in China is the 'promise' of having a good trading partner with similar products to that of Americans, but, lack in quality. I am sure all the hideous problems Americans faced with Chinese products can be recalled, melamine, etc. Not that China doesn't take these problems seriously, they do. They executed people for the deaths from products produced in China. China is taking everything very seriously. 

The problem as it remains today is that investors have placed too much hope in China's expanding markets and that is what has led to many recessions in the USA because of loss of jobs. Outsourcing is causing a great deal of problems to First World Countries. The standard of living is different. 

The USA has been trading with other nations in the Pacific such as Japan, New Zealand, Australia, etc. for a long time. We have waxed and waned in our economies together and have been rival currencies on some days, but, we are never so drastically different in our GOVERNANCE that quality of products or being competitive was ever in question.

The TPP is causing global quakes in that reality. The TPP as it is being constructed will create economic isolationism and not global trading. The goods coming from countries where poor governance is still a problem will be shunned by consumers. It is not something that is negotiable on paper or guaranteed with a handshake, the products simply don't pass muster. 

Not only the products, but, the loss in jobs and wages will cause even greater isolationism. The treaty is not worth the paper it is written on. It will cause a decrease in tax bases and there is no government on this Earth that can afford it.

China has a middle class now and to that end there are improvements in governance, but, at the same time to demand broad ranging changes in governance in other countries to accommodate the captains of Wall Street is not realistic.

The TPP is not benevolent at all. It is hostile and it is insulting to democracy and the capitalism used in it's economies. Each one of these countries need to work within a trade relationship with each other, including the USA. But, lumping all the economic dynamics of 12 countries at varying degrees of governance and standards of quality is not good for anyone. 

Trade agreements are suppose to strengthen both countries economies and not hack away at what already exists to reduce quality of life for the citizens dependent on strong economic relationships.

The Pacific nations aren't there yet and if that is uncomfortable for Wall Street, then they really have extended a lot of bad investment to their stockholders. It's unfortunate, but, not so unfortunate that Americans or any one else will accept unreasonable standards in trade. The corrupted Wall Street congress may not care, but, the businesses and the people of the USA will. 

At this point, the TPP has very limited ability to produce good relationships. It is those relationships between countries that is far more important than the impatience and idiocy of Wall Street.

Why do Republicans hate so called big government? Because they really do prefer ungovernable anarchy.