Thursday, July 30, 2015

The New Republic: The Long March to Medicare

Source:The New Republic- President Lyndon B. Johnson (Democrat, Texas) signing Medicare into law in 1965.
Source:The New Democrat

The fiftieth anniversary of the most successful government health insurance program in the country, if not the most successful health insurance program period. No other health insurer has provided more health insurance to more Americans than Medicare. And perhaps to more people in the world than Medicare. My issues with Medicare is not that the program exists at all, which is the libertarian argument against it. Or that it is a government-run health insurance program. But my issues is with how the program was set up. And the reason why it was set up, is because that is the best that Democratic Congress with Republican help from the minority could come up with in 1965.

We are a huge country that is between two of the largest oceans in the world. And that is just the mainland United States and back in 1965 we were a country roughly one-eighty-million people or so. And today we are pushing three-hundred-twenty-million people. And yet we set up two new huge health insurance programs that are to be run by one central authority in this huge country. Instead of bringing in the states to run their share of this program for their state. Or to create one health insurer that everyone could be eligible for. Not forced on them, but have a new public health insurer that everyone could sign up for and pay into if they choose to. Along with putting money down along with their employer so they are guaranteed health insurance in their senior years.

The original Affordable Care Act of 2009-10 that was passed by the House of Representatives in fall of 2009 had a public option in it for Medicare. Meaning people under Medicare age could sign up and pay into Medicare before they retire and before they are 65. That amendment was taken out of the Senate in the early spring of 2010. So the final bill that was passed on March of didn’t have the public option in it. So Medicare is still the largest health insurer in the country if not world and yet it only covers seniors. The least healthiest population of the country and makes it very expensive to run and pay for. You give middle-age and young adults and their kids the option to be part of Medicare and you would see millions of Americans sign up for Medicare. Which would bring down the costs of Medicare, because you would have young healthy Americans as part of the program.

Yes Medicare has been a very successful program because it has guaranteed health insurance to millions of Americans who otherwise wouldn’t have had it. Or would’ve ended up moving to the poor house, or having to sell everything that has value to them in order to get health care in their senior years. But this program could be so much better and so much more cost-effective and not so top-down. And allow for middle-age and young adults to cover themselves and their health insurance through Medicare. As well as similar to Medicaid bring the states in and allow for them to set up their own Medicare program where all of their citizens would be eligible for instead of just their seniors. And we wouldn’t need a Medicaid, or a Children’s Health Insurance Program, because those customers could take Medicare. Which is a much better program anyway.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

USA Today: Senator Tom Coburn: 'A Deficit of Debt Discussion'

Source:USA Today- former U.S. Senator Tom Coburn (Republican, Oklahoma) 2005-13.
Source:The New Democrat 

"The 2016 presidential race is beginning in earnest with new candidates entering the crowded field weekly. The Republican Party boasts a host of compelling and well qualified aspirants, many of whom I have known and served with for years. They bring a wealth of experience and policy savvy to a nation sorely in need of a rebound following the many failures of the federal government during the Obama presidency.

Yet despite their numbers, none of them is addressing in a meaningful way the greatest threat to our republic: our gigantic and rapidly growing national debt.  America’s cumulative borrowing is rapidly approaching $20 trillion, while the federal government's unfunded liabilities (future expenditures minus future tax revenue) now exceed a whopping $127 trillion — better than $1.1 million per taxpayer.

That’s not merely unsustainable; it’s suicidal.

Following a similarly risky path, Greece has now defaulted on its obligations, sending a shock wave through financial markets around the world. This was a crisis that could have been avoided through sound fiscal policy, but the Greek government has for years lacked the political will to do what it takes to secure that nation’s financial health. The nightly news showcases the unfolding Greek tragedy as though it were another TV reality show. A country on the verge of collapse, full steam ahead on a similar trajectory as the American economy — and journalists are largely silent.

Closer to home, Puerto Rico teeters on the edge of financial ruin and risks enormous damage to municipal bond funds and other instruments relied on by millions of Americans to help protect their long-term financial security.

Let’s be clear: The United States must end the cycle of endless and unsustainable debt that we’ve seen elsewhere around the world, or it will face the same fate as other nations before us." 

From USA Today 

"Both parties have equally participated in abandoning the limited role of the federal government," says Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma), whose new book, The Debt Bomb: A Bold Plan to Stop Washington from Bankrupting Our Economy, argues that Republicans and Democrats together have brought the U.S. to the brink of fiscal calamity.

First elected to the house in 1994 as part of the "Republican Revolution," Coburn is a staunch fiscal and social conservative, who's been outspokenly critical of members of his own party for compromising their principles out of political expedience. Coburn has publicly taken former House Speaker Newt Gingrich to task for lacking leadership and resolve during his battles with the Clinton White House to cut spending in the mid-90s.

Coburn, who's known in the senate as "Dr. No" for vetoing almost all new spending initiatives, says the federal budget is rife with "waste, fraud, and duplication." In 2006, Coburn co-sponsored legislation that created, which makes publicly accessible a list of all recipients of government funds. In 2010, Coburn was instrumental in getting the Government Accountability Office to undertake researching and documenting wasteful government programs.

A supporter of a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, Coburn was a co-author of the Partial-Birth Abortion Act of 2003, and he supported a 1996 law requiring that "V-chips" be placed in all television sets to allow parents to block programming deemed unsuitable. In 1997, Coburn criticized NBC for airing the Holocaust-film "Schindler's List" on the grounds that it included "vile language, full-frontal nudity and irresponsible sexual activity." NBC characterized Coburn's views as "frightening."

Source:Reason Magazine- U.S. Senator Tom Coburn (Republican, Oklahoma) talking to Reason Magazine in 2012.

From Reason Magazine

This is the main reason why I wish Senator Coburn at least finished his last term in the Senate. But he is dealing with serious health issues right now and it's easy to see why he stepped down. But he was one of the few people in Congress that actually understood the threat of the national debt to the American economy, but also knew what to do to actually fix those issues. That you weren’t going to get our debt under control simply by cutting programs and benefits for people in poverty. Or raising their taxes. That you had to look at entitlements, tax reform, the military budget and economic growth and get more people working. Which is where infrastructure and tax reform come in.

This is also one reason why we need a real third-party in America. A party that could speak to forty-percent of the country that doesn’t like the Democratic Party, or the Republican Party. A party that could get twenty-percent or more of the popular vote and perhaps even win some states. And challenge Republicans and Democrats in Congress. Like the old Ross Perot United We Stand movement. A real Independence Party that at the very least could at least bring Democrats and Republicans to the table when it comes to our financial issues. And move them away from their talking points and their partisan attacks. Right now, Democrats don’t want to talk about the debt and deficit. Other than taxing the rich and hoping that revenue doesn’t leave the country.

Republicans, like to talk about debt and deficits. But the problem is that’s all that they do. They say vote for them and they'll cut wasteful Washington spending. But won’t lay out where’s the waste in the Federal budget that they would cut. They say if you cut business taxes and regulations that would jumpstart economic growth in America. And that we have the highest corporate tax rate in the developed world. Which technically is true, but the huge factor that they leave out is that we have a substantial corporate welfare budget. All sorts taxpayer-funded subsides that the Bowls-Simpson Debt Commission that Senator Coburn was a member of in 2010 called tax expenditures. But you don’t tend to hear Republicans talking about cutting corporate welfare.

As long as the two parties and their bases that are in charge of the Federal Government essentially hate each other, we are not going to get a real debt reduction plan out of Congress and singed by the President whoever that President is. Why? Because what we need to do to fix our financial affairs will mean real sacrifices. And the longer we wait the more sacrifice there will be for more people.

A tax code, with lower rates, including on business’s. But where a lot of the loopholes are gone.

A military budget that won’t be responsible for financing the national defense of other developed countries.

An entitlement system, where people who are wealthy will be expected to pay more. And where everyone who can will be expected to work longer.

A public assistance system, where people collecting public assistance who can and aren’t disabled will be expected to work their way off of Welfare all together.

And no presidential candidate wants to ask Americans to do these things right now. Because it would mean risking votes from people who depend on all of these government benefits right now for their way of life. Which is a big problem with our Federal budget right now. That it is mostly about military and financial subsidies for people who can’t seem to live without them. Instead of creating a society, an economy and public assistance system where people are empowered and expected to be able to take care of themselves. Unless they are physically, or mentally disabled.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

The Michael Parkinson Show: Diana Dors, Kenneth Williams & Desmond Morris (1971)

Source:Anorak- English Muffin Diana Dors on The Michael Parkinson Show in 1971.
Source:The New Democrat

“Diana Dors, Kenneth Williams and Desmond Wilcox on Parkinson show 1971”

From Anorak 

From every interview I’ve seen of Diana Dors at least from the 1970s, she reminds me a lot of another great actress who was also as cute as a button, a very big button, but she reminds me a lot of the great Shelley Winters.

Diana and Shelly Winters always had something funny to say and had an opinion on everything and who also had great comedic timing.

Again, as I blogged before, I wish Diana was around a lot longer. She’s only about 40 when this interview was done in 1971 and only had thirteen years to live at this point. Also without BBC and other British television networks, we would’ve had a hard time seeing her doing anything at least in America. Because she stopped working here and rarely came back.

Desmond Morris, was social biologist who studied human behavior. And what he was talking about in this video was how people behave and look in the act of sex. And trying to fit his demonstration in why some women are as he put it sex bombs, or sex symbols. Talking about how people’s eyes tend to close and their lips get bigger in the act of performing sex.

With Diana, making the crack that this happens to her all the time. That her lips get bigger. But there’s lot more to Diana Dors in why she was a goddess, or I prefer English Muffin and great English baby-faced goddess. Who was born as a baby obviously, but never lost her baby face even after she got a bit more plump in the 1970s. Which if anything might of just made her cuter.

Diana Dors, reminds me a lot of Shelley Winters as far as stature and personality. Someone who was very adorable obviously. Who was very versatile as an actress, who was also a hell of an actress and someone you wouldn’t forget if you saw her. With a great personality and sense of humor who could always drop the humor and make people laugh. And pull jokes out of nowhere even when others were talking.

Diana had a tendency to steal the show even when she was on with other comedians, like you see in this interview. But as Desmond Wilcox put it, she was sex bomb, or as we say in America a bombshell. Diana, was a hot, baby-faced, goddess with a great body that guys dreamed about. And again it would’ve been nice if she was around a lot longer.

Friday, July 24, 2015

C-SPAN: 'President Bill Clinton's Welfare Reform Press Statement'

Source:C-SPAN- President William J. Clinton: after signing the 1996 Welfare to Work Law.
Source:The New Democrat

"A very brief statement from President Bill Clinton, about his signature of the 1996 Welfare to Work Law. That passed Congress with a bipartisan vote."


The 1996 Welfare to Work Law, I believe is the best part of the Clinton Presidency. Along with moving the Democratic Party back to the Center-Left and making it a national party again. That can win outside of Washington, New York City, Boston, Chicago, Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, the traditional McGovernite and more social democratic areas of the country. Because the Welfare to Work Law, gave millions of Americans who probably only knew Welfare as far as any income that was coming into their homes, the opportunity to go to work. To finish their education and get themselves a good job. Which is what Welfare to Work is really about.

The only way to cut poverty in America, is to empower people at the bottom and near-bottom to move up the economic ladder and become economically self-sufficient. That gets to things like education and job creation, as well as economic development and infrastructure in low-income communities. You can give someone on public assistance the biggest public assistance checks that you possibly can that American taxpayers are willing to subsidize. But as long as people on public assistance are collecting those checks and can’t support themselves without those checks, they’re on Welfare and living in poverty.

So to actually move people out of poverty, you have to empower them to get a good job. And tell them that they can’t stay on Welfare indefinitely and use that time to improve themselves and prepare to become members of the American workforce. That means childcare for their kids, requiring parents who are no longer involved in their kids lives to pay their child support payments. Encouraging employers to hire and train people who are on Welfare. And making education and job training available to people on Welfare so they can finish their education and get themselves a good job and get off of Welfare all together.

As President Clinton said many times, the Democratic Party should be the party that is about opportunity, empowerment, liberalization, liberation. Liberalization and liberation being my words, but that we should be a party that is about using government to empower people. Using a limited responsible government to empower people at the bottom and near-bottom who are struggling to work their way up the economic ladder and be able to live in freedom. Like most of the rest of the country. Not using government to make more people dependent. Or saying that people who are low-skilled and have kids can stay on public assistance indefinitely simply because they are low-skilled and have kids. As if they are disabled, or something for those reasons. Welfare to Work, is a big part of that.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

The New Republic: Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig: 'Your Right to Die Isn’t Enough'

Source:The New Republic with an article about euthanasia.
Source:The New Democrat

Euthanasia, is a tough issue for me. We’re not just talking about suicide here, but someone getting legal help from not just someone else to kill them, but getting that help from someone whose sworn to protect life. And do whatever they can to save people who are hurt. And in many cases where their life is at risk and they can die if they don’t get the proper medical treatment.

But I’ve never said that I believe in an absolute Right to Life. Besides, my definition to Right to Life, is a bit different from let's say a devout Catholic, or Evangelical. My Right to Life is about the individual. That they’re responsible for the management of their own life and held accountable for good and bad exactly how they live their life and the impact that they make on others. My Right to Life, or belief in it, is conditional, to be blunt about it. That once a person becomes a person, meaning they’re born, they’re responsible for their own life and can live their own live anyway they choose. As long as they aren’t hurting any innocent person.

And because of this as a Liberal, I can say, you what this is your life. How you decide to live is up to you and you’re going to be held accountable for exactly how you live for good, bad an in between. Which is why I can say as a Liberal that I believe physician assisted suicide, should be an option for people who are terminally ill. Or in such bad shape that it’s just not that they’ll never recover, but they’ll be in some type of horrible pain regardless of the amount of medication that they have access for the rest of their lives. But I’m a Liberal, not a Libertarian, or an Anarchist. And I believe there also needs to be rules in place for exactly how physician assisted suicide could be carried out. To protect the innocent from predatory behavior.

One, a patient who is in real bad shape physically and suffering a lot, or not, whether they’ve essentially been given a death sentence from their doctor, or not, would need a doctor’s written consent to be put to death. Doctors shouldn’t be forced to deliver this procedure, especially if they’re against it.

Two, someone who is contemplating physician assisted suicide, needs to either facing a death sentence. Meaning they’ve been told they only have a certain amount of time to live and they’ll be in pain for the rest of their life. Or, they’re such in bad shape that they could theoretically live a natural life in years, but will be in serious pain for the rest of their life.

Three, the patient is in solid mental health and think clearly and knows exactly what they’re doing. That they’re in the best mental health that they possibly can be. So they don’t make a horrible mistake that they’ll never recover from.

Four, they’re 21, or over. Minors, should not only be able to make this decision for themselves, but not even be able to make this decision with parental consent.

Five, that the patient informs their family that they’ve decided to end their life. So they know what’s going on here with their relative. Even if they are not physically and emotionally close with that person.

Again, physician assisted suicide, should be a tough issue for anyone whose either on the fence on it, or thinks it should be an option for people. Because we are talking about ending the life of someone who hasn’t even been accused of hurting an innocent person. But for me at least as a Liberal, the Right to Life belongs to the individual. And they have that right until they lose it. And for me that even includes the right to take that life under the conditions that I’ve laid out.

Monday, July 20, 2015

The New Republic: David Dayen: 'Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley Failed Their Black Lives Matter Test'

Source:The New Republic- Governor Martin O'Malley: at Net Roots Nation in 2015.
Source:The New Democrat

"Jose Antonio Vargas interviews Gov. Martin O'Malley.
Presidential Town Hall featuring Gov. Martin O'Malley and Sen. Bernie Sanders."

Source:Net Roots Nation- I guess this is where Governor O'Malley, gets into trouble for saying all lives matter. 
First of all, it's great to hear a politician go to a political group and event and tell them what they don’t want to hear. Especially when they are right and knowing that it might hurt them for speaking the truth. Which is what Martin O’Malley did at Net Roots Nation when he said: “all lives matter”, instead of Black lives matter. Which is what the Far-Left wing of the party wants all Democrats to say. As if it is not obvious enough that Black lives matter. As if anyone is arguing that Black lives don’t matter. Which no offense, is a borderline brain-dead thing to say and imply. Which is one reason why people who are pushing this Black lives matter theme, are on the Far-Left. Senator Bernie Sanders, instead of saying Black lives matter, instead dodged the question and tried to get back on economics.

Again, all lives matter. And to even say that is an idea of how stupid this whole discussion is and some of the people in the whole so-called Black Lives Matter movement are acting. Instead of talking about the challenges and issues that the African-American community are facing and offering solutions to discuss them, they pull out a straw man that no one can disagree with. None of the Democrats running for president are running to be president of this American group, or that one. They’re running to be President of the United States. Which covers the whole nation, even if they win the Democratic nomination, elected President and don’t win every single vote and state in the country. They’ll still be President of the United States. And not the Caucasian President, or African President, Asian President, Latino President, or any other President of one group, or one group.

Republicans and for good reason, all the time get accused of creating wedge issues to divide the country. And try to make Democrats look like they don’t love America as much as Republicans do. And you know the issues. It was crime in the 1970s, followed by abortion, pornography, homosexuality and other issues. But the whole so-called Black Live Matter movement is doing the same thing, but from the Far-Left. And if you don’t say Black lives matter and instead say all lives matter, regardless of race, or color, they imply you don’t care about the African-American community and minorities as much as they do. Which is really stupid and also insulting. Instead of saying Black lives matter, as if people believe they don’t, they should be addressing the issues and offering solutions to those problems.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

The Unforgettable Diana Dors

Source:The New Democrat- English Muffin Diana Dors.
Source:The New Democrat

Of the three famous big blonde baby-faced Hollywood bombshells of the 1950s and 1960s, which would be Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield and of course Diana Dors, Diana, or Baby Di as I call her, Diana is my favorite. I just wish she was around a lot longer. At least 25-30 longer. She had it all physically, obviously, but she was also a hell of an actress with a great personality and sense of humor. She reminds me a lot of Shelley Winters physically and personally, as well as Elizabeth Taylor. Women who are great actress’s, but also have great personalities and sense of humor’s and make people around them feel really good.

I also wish that Diana worked in America and Hollywood longer and did more movies here. She wouldn’t have had to live here, but it would’ve been nice to have her in America in longer, because she would’ve had a great career here and become one of the best actress’s of her generation. Because she was such a great actress who could make people believe she was the person she was playing. Who didn’t have any real personal issues around her like being addicted to any drug whatsoever, including alcohol. The only real issues in Diana’s personal life, were the men she was with and the people she hung out with. But she was pretty professional and took care of herself.

I think the only real issue with Diana and her career, is that she really only worked when she wanted to. Had she worked more and been more active, she would’ve had a bigger career, because there would’ve been a lot of good roles for her in good movies. But she was big in the 1950s and take time off in the 1960s and doesn’t come back to America in the 1970s at all, except to do interviews with American media on talk shows, like Merv Griffin. She was someone who made a lot of money early and then spent a lot of it and would come back and work to be able to support herself and live the lifestyle that she wanted. But I don’t believe she is someone who ever believed she had to be in the spotlight and have people thinking about her and talking about her. In order to be happy in life.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Economist: 'America’s Elderly Prisoner Boom'

Source:The Economist- growing old in a California prison.

Source:The New Democrat 

"Thanks to ultra-long sentences, America's 2.3m prisoners are getting older. Under the 'Gold coats' programme in California, younger inmates look after elderly ones... 

From The Economist

A couple of things hit me when I watched this video. One, the fact that America at least at the state level, has moved away from prison industries in too many cases and instead has turned prison into warehouses, where inmates either grow really old there, or are essentially just waiting to die with no real reason to live, even in prison. 

One of the consequences of prison warehouses is that taxpayers get stuck paying for the cost of living of people, especially elderly inmates, who could’ve been working this whole time even in prison. And paying for their own cost of living. Including the lifers and putting money away for their retirement in prison.

The other thing that hit me, was that prisons have become the place where we send all of our difficult and challenging members of society. All of our outsiders, that are guilty of some felony, especially violent felonies, end up in prison. Which makes prisons in America very expensive.

Prison’s, should be for felons, especially violent felons.

Mental hospitals, state hospitals for the criminally insane, should be for criminally insane and mentally handicapped people who are convicted of felonies and are violent.

Jails, should be for people awaiting trial and for small time criminals, especially if they’re doing short sentences.

Halfway houses, should be for convicted felons, who don’t pose a major threat to society. They need either rehab, or learn a trade and do community service. But by in-large are productive people, or can become productive people, who just need a path to make that happen.

Retirement homes and senior homes, should be for seniors, including convicted felons, who can’t take care of themselves. Who pose no threat to anyone other than maybe themselves.

I’m not saying that we should transfer every senior inmate to private senior citizens homes. But we need a senior health care system for our senior inmates, who are just too weak to take care of themselves at this point in their lives, let alone strong enough to hurt innocent people. And set up senior homes outside of prison, for our senior inmates, that could be run by the private sector. That could be paid for by the senior inmates themselves. Based on the money they’ve earned the whole time they’ve been in prison. Instead of sending every single person in America, who poses some challenge to society, or did pose some challenge, to prison.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Associated Press: Sandy Kozel: Deal Reached Over Iranian Nuclear Program

Source:The New Democrat

From what I’ve seen of the Iranian nuclear deal so far, it looks very good to me. The only issue that I have with it is the part where Iran, can veto, or challenge requests made by weapons inspectors to their program. Or get those requests denied by a third-party. But other than that, this looks like a good deal. We, meaning the international community, the Western developed world, actually gets to inspect their nuclear program and make sure they aren’t, or can’t develop nuclear weapons. Iran, gets sanctions relief on their economic sanctions that have had a devastating impact on their economy.

A question I think that Congressional Republicans, especially Neoconservatives like Senator Tom Cotton have to answer, is that if we don’t negotiate with Iran and get a deal with them, what is the consequence of that. What would happen then is that Iran would get their nuclear arms program anyway. Because not even Neoconservatives, seem to be interested in invading and occupying Iran. I guess we could try to take their program out from the air. But they have underground bases and nuclear plants. And to even attempt that, there would be a new Congressional debate about whether Congress needs to approve those actions, or not. And Congressional Republicans, don’t seem to be interested in authorizing President Obama to walk his dog, yet give him authority to strike another country.

I think now the pressure is on Congressional Republicans to prove that the deal with Iran is a bad one. And see if they’re capable, especially their Neoconservatives, of speaking outside of the partisan talking points and actually show why no deal with Iran is better than this deal. And how they would prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons if nothing none is done to stop them. This deal, isn’t about Iranian human rights violations and their support for terrorism. Which is well-known and obvious. But preventing the Islamic Republic from becoming a nuclear weapons power. The other sanctions dealing with their human rights abuses and support for terrorists, will always be in place until Iran corrects and changes their behavior.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Alan Eichler: Merv Griffin Show- Diana Dors (1979)

Source:Alan Eichler- Ann Miller and English Muffin Diana Dors, on Merv Griffin in 1979.
Source:The New Democrat

"British bombshell Diana Dors made this rare TV talk show appearance in 1979.  Also on the panel are Ann Miller, Stockard Channing, Lesley-Anne Down, and both Fernando and Lorenzo Lamas."

From Alan Eichler
Source:Dialogues- English Muffin Diana Dors, on Merv Griffin in 1979.

I love it when Diana Dors, first comes to America. Just wish she spent more time here and did more here, because she would’ve had a great career in Hollywood if she wanted it. And not just of been a sex symbol, but someone who was also a hell of an actress and a very versatile as well.

But I also love it when she brings out her personality and her sense of humor. Because she had a lot of both. And physically, she might have been the Marilyn Monroe of Britain. But she was better, at least in the sense that grew up and matured. And just looked as cute as a baby most of her life. But she grew up on the inside and took care of herself. Unlike Marilyn, who acted the way she looked.

Merv Griffin, apparently liked panel discussions and brought on several guests at the same time. And in some cases at least the guests wouldn’t know each other and perhaps not have much in common. Which backfired at least one time that I know of. When he had James Brolin and Dennis Hopper on at the same time. And Brolin, accused Hopper of something to the effect of spilling a lot of garbage. I would’ve been nice had Merv interviewed Diana one-on-one and did a ten-minute interview. Because he was a good interviewer and she was a very interesting person and not just great to look at.

Diana, died in 1984 at I believe the age of 52. So in that sense she lasted longer than both Marilyn, who died at 36 and Jayne Mansfield at 34. And Diana, did 34 films and actually had a pretty good career in length and substance.

But back then even, when the average American and Brit was living into their seventies, to die at 52 when you’re still a middle-age person, is dying while you’re still fairly young. She still looked great at this point and was still baby-faced adorable with the great body and could still turn young men on. And yet she dies just five years later. It would’ve been nice to of had Diana around as long as Elizabeth Taylor, who with all of Liz’s problems in life, made it to 79. Because Diana, is one of the best stars of all-time.

Friday, July 10, 2015

The Economist: Jailhouse Nation

Source:The Economist Jailhouse Nation.
Source:The New Democrat

I agree with The Economist, that the War on Drugs in America is the biggest contributor to our large prison population. That costs American taxpayers billions of dollars every year. As well as the fact that we send so many non-violent offenders to prison. Shoplifters, car thieves, prostitutes and others, to prison. When everybody involved would be better off if these people were in a halfway house, local jail even and in the case of prostitution, not that I’m recommending prostitution, but we don’t need to lock up people for simply making a living giving sex. Drug addicts, need to be in drug rehab and halfway houses. Not jail, or prison. And that would reduce our prison population dramatically.

Prisons, shouldn’t be the home for the mentally ill either. Even for the criminally insane. We use to have special state hospitals that were secure like prisons, that housed are criminally insane. And for our mentally ill offenders who clearly do pose a real threat to society, but perhaps aren’t career criminals, we should have state hospitals for them. Prisons, should be the last resort when it comes to offenders in America. People who pose real security and economic threats to society. Where we might need to hold them for ten years, or more and try to rehabilitate them there as well. Prisons, should be for violent offenders and economic terrorists. Not small town hoods, who otherwise aren’t very dangerous.

And the other way to cut the American prison population, is for the people who need to be in prison, you work with them inside, whether they are serving life, or not. Especially if they aren’t serving life, so they can get out of prison as soon as they are ready to succeed on the outside. You do that by empowering them and requiring them to finish their education while in prison. Put them to work in prison based on the education that they now have. Pay them for the work that they do so they can pay for their cost of living in prison. Give them whatever counseling and programs that they need to be able to succeed in prison and succeed on the outside.

America, will simply never be Europe, for a whole lot of reasons that not even The Economist knows. We are much freer and more individualistic as a country. We are a lot more diverse, as perhaps the most racially, ethnic and culturally, diverse at least large country in the world. We are the home to Hollywood, where a lot of our criminals get inspired. We also have poverty and single-parent issues that a lot of other developed countries do not have. And we are also so damn big as a country. By far the largest developed country in the world as far as land and population. And culturally with our individualism and Americans wanting to do things for themselves and be able to take care of themselves, we don’t have the pacifist collectivist attitude of Europe. But we could become a country that is even more free with fewer people in prison.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Economist: The Real Cost of The War on Drugs

Source:The Economist with a piece about the American War On Drugs.
Source:The New Democrat

America, at least at one point and perhaps they still are, was the biggest consumer of narcotics, legal and otherwise, in the world. One reason why you see so many drug dealers, drug lords, drug terrorists in Central America, the Caribbean, Columbia and other places in South America. Because they want to get their dope to the United States. Because they know how much of that Americans consume. I’ve made this point so much, but once you prohibit something, doesn’t mean it goes away. It means it goes underground. Where people can’t see it and find it. Where the only rules that are in place, are made and enforced by drug dealers.

The War on Drugs and drug terrorists, almost destroyed the Republic of Columbia in the 1990s. And they still have issues with their War on Drugs and terrorists down there. Why, because Columbians, other South Americans and Americans, still want their narcotics and want them badly. The War on Drugs, is not a real war, but America has been fighting this so-called war since 1971. Spending trillions of dollars on it and the problems have only been made worst. Just because you threaten to lock someone up for what they do to themselves, especially if they’re addicted to what they’re on, doesn’t mean it goes away. Just means people are now putting their freedom at risk and risking incarceration, to do their drugs.

The real costs of the War on Drugs, is a lot more money on law enforcement and incarceration, that taxpayers have to pay. A lot more Americans in prison for simply consuming drugs and what they’re doing to themselves. People who otherwise could be productive members of society if they weren’t in prison. People, that had they been sent to drug rehab, or a halfway house, instead of prison, could’ve beaten their addiction and been able to move on with the rest of their lives. But now have seen their addiction get worst and are now convicted felons with a prison record. Whose going to have a hard time making it on the outside when they get out. Even if they beat their addiction. So the real cost of the War on Drugs, is immense. And something Americans taxpayers have to pay for everyday.

Monday, July 6, 2015

VOA News: Henry Ridgewell: Greece Defiantly Rejects Europe’s Bailout Terms

Source:VOA News- with a piece about Greece's debt crisis.
Source:The New Democrat

I don’t quote Margaret Thatcher very often, because I don’t agree with her on much. But one good line that she has that is very true and cuts through all the, lets say bull, is that, “the problem with socialism, is that eventually you run out of other people’s money.” That is the problem with Greece right now. They live in a society where they expect their government to do things for them that their government can’t afford to do for them. Socialism, has its place at least in every democratic developed society. But the only way socialism can work and benefit people, is to have a strong functioning economy. Where most of the workforce is employed and making a good living.

And to quote Milton Friedman, who I probably agree with more than Maggie Thatcher, “there’s so such thing as a free lunch.” Socialism is not free. Everything that government does for, or to its people, comes with a price. And depending on how much government does for society, that price can be fairly steep. When your government spends half of the revenue that the economy brings in and you have a twenty-five percent unemployment rate that Greece has, you’re going to have high deficits every year and as a result, you’re going to pile up high debt. Which is what is going on in Greece right now. Greece, reminds on New York City in the mid 1970s and Detroit now and in the last ten years. They’re over-promised their people. And when you’re economy goes down, you can no longer afford the generous benefits that you’ve promised your people.

What the European Union is telling the Hellenic Republic of Greece and especially Germany, perhaps the only healthy large state in Europe now, economically, is that they’re no longer going to subsidize an economy and economic system that is failing. If Greece wants the EU to continue to help them and bail them out, the Hellenic Government in Greece is going to have to get their costs and debt down. And that means moving people off of Welfare and putting them to work. And expecting more Greeks to be able to take care of themselves. And not be able to live off of taxpayers and other European taxpayers indefinitely. That Greece, needs to go back to work and get their economy going.

What Greece is saying, at least a majority of their voters, is that they are not ready to give up their democratic socialism. Even if it means they’ll be able to go back to work and take care of themselves. That why should they have to work when they can be taken care of their government indefinitely. And as a result, they’re probably going to be on their own and without the help of Europe. Because European taxpayers are no longer going to be forced to subsidize a failing economy and failing economic system that Greece has. And as a result the tough times that Greece is going through right now, are just getting started.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Biography: Jayne Mansfield Blonde Ambition

Source:Biography- Hollywood Babydoll Jayne Mansfield never felt overexposed.
Source:The New Democrat

I just learned something new about Jayne Mansfield. Jayne, was a natural brunette. She changed to blonde, as part of her goal of becoming a Hollywood starlet. Which she essentially became and this night sound very hard to believe, but a lot of what she saw of her in public, was an act. She played the blonde bimbo to perfection to further her career. But in private, she knew exactly what she wanted and how to get it. And knew that she had real talent as an actress, comedian and even singer. But even if she was actually fairly bright and knew what she wanted and what she was doing, like Marilyn Monroe, she never had the maturity level and was never responsible enough to take care of herself.

Jayne Mansfield’s career, was basically over by the early and mid 1960s. She was hot, great body, baby-faced adorable, but inside she was just as cute and immature as her face look on the outside. She had the face and personality of a very big little girl and a high school girl. Who didn’t take rejection and disappointment very well. And as a result, she didn’t take care of herself and drank way too much. She died in 1967 in a car accident where was driving wild and gets hit by a car. Similar to Marilyn again, Jayne was physically a goddess and had a lot of professional talent and intelligence as an entertainer. But was immature inside and didn’t take care of herself.

Jayne, would be 82 years old today and depending on what kind of shape she was in physically, could still be working today. She would be about the same age of Ellen Burstyn, who is still active as an actress. But Jayne died 48 years ago at the age of 34. She was two years young than even Marilyn Monroe, when Marilyn died in 1962. She might even still look great and be as cute as a button even at 82, similar to Barbara Eden today. But she never grew up inside and didn’t take care of herself. Which is how you get in a car accident and die from speeding and getting hit. Jayne, was someone whose career could’ve gone a lot better and could’ve been a lot longer.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Slate Magazine: William Saletan: Is Polygamy Next After Gay Marriage? Chief Justice John Roberts Says Yes

Source:Slate Magazine- U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts.
Source:The New Democrat

Just to be clear, I don’t think there’s a good case against polygamy. At least one that I’ve seen that would say, “you know what, polygamy is a bad thing. To the point that it should be illegal.” And what I would say against polygamy, is that if you want to redefine marriage in America, even in a consenting polygamist relationship, legalize polygamy and call it marriage. Gay marriage, doesn’t redefine marriage. Up until the last ten years, or so marriage has always been between a man and a women, but there wasn’t any official definition of marriage. Other than it always involved two consenting adults who agreed to marry each other. Legalize polygamy, would certainly change that.

As a Liberal myself, if three people lets say want to be involved in a polygamist relationship and they all know about that, that’s their business. And why should big government be able to interfere with that. But just don’t call it marriage, because we’re not talking about two parties involved, but at least three. To give you a hypothetical, if Joe Jones, wants to marry Mary Smith and Sally Wilson at the same time, or he’s already married to Mary and wants to stay married to Mary, but wants to marry Sally and Sally wants to marry Joe and Sally knows that Joe is already married to Mary and doesn’t have a problem with that and Mary doesn’t mind Joe being married to Sally, as well and perhaps is even attracted to Sally, then that’s their business. Not big government’s. It’s not the job of government to run people’s lives for them.

I would never be involved in a polygamist relationship, at least one that I know about. But there a lot of things that I don’t personally approve of, including homosexuality as a straight man. But just because I don’t personally approve of something that doesn’t affect me and has nothing to do with my life and how I live, why should I or government be able to tell others that you can’t live differently, because we don’t approve. Gay marriage, doesn’t redefine marriage, at least not officially, but polygamy would. So legalize polygamy, sure, as long as all parties involved approve and are aware of the extra relationship, or relationships involved. But just don’t call it marriage, because its polygamy. Which is different.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Pot-TV: Andrew Bernstein: The Case For Ending Drug Prohibition

Source:The New Democrat

I mostly agree with Andrew Bernstein here and I disagree with him when it comes to full legalization. I’m not a Libertarian and that is just one example of why I wouldn’t legalize cocaine, heroin and meth. This idea that people who consume these drugs and lot of these users are addicted to these drugs and is why they still use them, that they’re only hurting themselves, is simply false.

Cocaine, heroin and meth, are a lot stronger than marijuana and alcohol and are very addictive. And when you get and stay on heroin, cocaine and meth, you’re not only devastating yourself physically, but its bad for our healthcare system with all the added costs to our emergency rooms. And it hurts our economy as well, because of the lack of productivity that comes from having workers on those narcotics. You legalize those drugs in America and we’ll see a lot more accidents on our roads and people making horrible decisions that hurt others. Simply because they don’t know what they’re doing, because they’re high.

So here’s what I would do. End the War on Drugs and even end drug prohibition. I want marijuana to be legal everywhere in America and taxed and regulated like alcohol. But with the current makeup of Congress and even with a Democratic President, that is not very likely right now. But what I believe Congress could do and President Obama and the U.S. Justice Department is already doing, is to stay the Feds won’t interfere in states that decide to legalize marijuana. And won’t prosecute marijuana cases that involve the simple possession, usage and selling of marijuana for adults in those states. Congress and the President, could make that official Federal policy going forward.

As far as cocaine, heroin and meth. Again, end the War on Drugs and end drug prohibition. But that’s not the same as legalizing those drugs. What I would say for people who choose to use those drugs, they would no longer face prosecution, jail, or prison time, for simply being under the influence and in possession of those drugs. But if they are just in possession of those drugs, they would be fined for the amount that they have. If they can’t pay it, they would work it off. If they’re caught under the influence, or are addicts, they’re looking at forced drug rehab, at their own expense. As well as continue to prosecute cocaine, heroin and meth dealers.

The War on Drugs, is a complete failure. The War on Iraq, looks like a brilliant military strategy and campaign in comparison. But just because the War on Drugs has failed, doesn’t mean we should make a colossal mistake in the opposite direction. We need a sensible narcotics policy in America, that supports personal freedom and choice, but at the same time also makes sense for our economic, health care, law enforcement and corrections systems.

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