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A LOOK IN THE MIRROR
THE DISINTEGRATION OF OUR MORALS,
VALUES, ETHICS AND SOCIETY
CAN AMERICA BE SAVED?
Copyright c 2019 by Darrell Cass
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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
A Look in the Mirror / Darrell Cass
This book includes bibliographical references
ISBN 978- 0692474228 – ISBN 0692474226
The text type was set in Garamond
Cover and Jacket Design by Martin Lee
To my little girl Kiana who’s not so little anymore.
Without you I never would have lived.
A true hero to democracy and people’s champion
who inspired millions of people, gave us hope,
and made sure we were never alone.
May his tenacity never wane and fire be spread but never extinguished.
Prologue: A Look in the Mirror 1
1. The Stock Market and Financial Institutions 14
2. Proprietary Trading on an Epic Scale – Hedge Funds and Derivatives 34
3. Political Action Committees – Are We Still a Democracy? 58
4. Our Dishonorable Government 84
5. Our $69 Million Piece of Pie – Pure Gluttony at its Worst 106
6. Education – From my School Committee Perch 122
7. Immigration – Is it out of Control? 151
8. Environment Versus Energy Hogs 166
9. Our Dysfunctional Government 194
10. Two Bank Meltdowns in Twenty Years and Other Scams 217
11. New York City and the Media 236
12. Electronics – Environmental and Social Genocide or Savior? 260
13. Medical and Insurance Fraud – Are We Just Guinea Pigs? 280
14. The Legal System 300
15. Sports 320
16. Religion 334
17. Our Military Complex 341
18. The Presidential Address 353
Epilogue – Can America be Saved? 364
Like a lot of people in these parts, I remember the days of giant family gatherings on our farm listening to the baseball game on the radio and friends chatting away in my grandmother’s small town family restaurant. Not all that far removed from the same lifestyle of our founding fathers, we were living the American dream – big families on big farms with lots of friends and family with whom we shared our good fortune. When some of the new farmers arrived in town after the great stock market crash of 1929 unable to get bank loans they needed to establish their own businesses, my grandfather came through like their knight in shining armor and personally gave them the loans. We had faith in our fellow Americans and helped each other back in the community barn raising days. We were free and our own bosses in control of our destiny for generations. Like our founding fathers, we believed in a free government without tyranny, democracy without oppression, civic responsibility that freedom demands and true patriots rise against all those that stand against these beliefs.
My family has historically been a rather well-to-do, independent, business oriented group of Republicans who acquired their upper middle class status through shrewd land acquisitions, independent businesses, hard work, and stock market investments with an emphasis on oil related industries. We were often upscale country farmers with a get-a-way house on the lake and hunting cabin reminiscent of President Theodore (Teddy) Roosevelt’s western years. My grandmother was our county’s Chairman during the Eisenhower administration, and the whole family was staunch supporters of both his and the Nixon administrations.
However, they were the last of the moderate, progressive Republicans who followed the philosophies of American heroes Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt, then his Democratic cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) and fellow farmer Harry S. Truman. So like millions of Republicans after the Watergate scandal and the radicalization of the lost party that started in the 1960’s with paranoid extremists such as Lewis Uhler, Barry Goldwater, and Ronald Reagan, the family broke ranks and switched alliances to the Independent Party our founding fathers crafted their vision of the country after.
After getting just one bad apple that brought hard times to the family party and seeing our lofty position quickly disintegrate, I’ve now lived in both worlds of the upper middle class who could afford nearly anything they pleased and the new struggling lower middle class. My unusual path through life has left me a more learned, civic minded individual with deep ethical and moral convictions that I hope will resonate to all of you.
While many have taken the high road and written what you want to hear about society’s great unraveling (usually from a financial standpoint inside their multimillion dollar homes in Washington or New York City about the Ebenezer Scrooge aristocrats they blame for our predicament), they have just covered the tip of the iceberg. Although they are a main cog, it goes far beyond them and the two cities that bear little resemblance to the other 99% of America – yet spread their evil throughout the land. I will, instead, share with you a trace of history, highlights, recent events, and experiences from family, friends, neighbors, and people like yourselves that typify our newfound greed, selfishness, and social problems. Plus, inside secrets from my perch on crony local governmental agencies that vehemently affect us all.
This embarrassing Noam Chomsky, Socrates-like analysis of modern day society, illuminates the ingenious ways our self-serving elite have percolated their morals, values, and ethics down throughout society at any cost: One that was willingly hypnotized, brainwashed, duped, and molded into playing its role in this play for modern day privateers through a comprehensive list of cancerous infections we’ve all spread throughout every segment of society for their benefit. As did they, I throw down the gauntlet and proclaim the truth shall set you free! While America has tens of millions of good, honest, hardworking people and does many wonderful and incredible things, I don’t hesitate pointing out the evil ones and our own faults that now outweigh them and tilt the scale the wrong way.
I assure you this book is for the little people, the laymen. Not pompous, arrogant, crony, capitalists who have no conscience, sold their souls, poisoned every well, and captured and imprisoned all counter- weights that balance our society… though they would be advised to read it and get a conscience. This is a hard look in the mirror to reeducate those 99% of Americans and the world that have been bullied, programmed, kidnapped, and beaten into delusional submission by master sorcerers. My hope is to convince those of you who have succumbed to their sorcery to join us and take action.
This is about our social degradation started by Wall Street, politicians, and Super Pac’s in the 1980’s with just a few selfish, corrupt, moral less, narcissist on board. But by 2000, when the train pulled out of the station – it was packed full of ordinary Americans under their spell. You will quickly realize for the last 35 years we’ve been nothing more than a highway for political ambitions, an extremist punching bag they beat to a pulp, and a puppet they played like a violin for their amusement.
When a guy’s watching a football game on his big screen TV (he often can’t afford), he doesn’t think about why he has that giant thing when he used to be satisfied with a 25” one, and the electricity it uses will slowly drain his wallet, or the severe detrimental effects on the environment. People don’t think about why they buy those expensive computers, games, and $700 iPhones with contracts that put them in the poor house and their addictive and often deadly destructive powers. Or the media’s influence and why they’re wearing $200 shoes, supersized pants, and idolizing destructive, violent rappers. They don’t consider their schools, the environment, and most things they ever do, use, or see as Wall Street and the affluent blatantly cashing in on them at any cost to society and the planet! Like the opium addicted Chinese the British government created in Hong Kong in the 1830’s – complete with warships to insure their continued addiction – they don’t see themselves as manipulated dupes in their diabolical master plan.
Time and again we charge that football like Charlie Brown and follow their plan as if they sincerely are not going to pull the ball away, then continue to follow that Scrooge of contemporary society – COMMERCIALISM – right off the cliff!
Who falls for the charlatans insufferable boorish sales pitches? Who lines up outside of stores waiting for days to buy their newest gizmo or gadget, then stampede, trample, and kill each other to quench their insatiable thirst? Who buys their mammoth TV’s, jewelry, fashions, and automobiles stuffed to the hilt with the latest expensive gadgets on borrowed money? Who really empowers the billionaires, politicians, and banking establishments that are more dangerous than standing armies and helped push the self-destruct button?
This book is about the inauspicious vile forces affecting society from a much broader, previously ignored, non-tunnel vision, look in the mirror perspective that points out it takes “two to tango.” Who’s really responsible for our misguided, irrational, self-absorbed, materialistic, often violent, and cruel society, and how did it happen? Is it Wall Street and the behemoth banks, the titans of industry, or the federal government? Or the guys at the repair shop, factory workers, and the town inspector and his secretary? Perhaps it’s the local mayor, farmers, machinist, janitors, preachers, and school teachers. Maybe it’s all of them… maybe it’s you!
Most of the material I use comes from a lifetime of living a rural and suburban life with my eyes open and not accepting the public brainwashing that has descended over society like a plague. I’ve observed our world through Spock-like logic,reality, and facts. Callus and brutally honest in spots, with a grandfatherly heartfelt love and contempt in others, we’ll cover a wide variety of intertwined, controversial subjects, addictions, and perverted things we go through to serve our masters. My short history lessons set the stage for the knockout punch, with the reoccurring themes – “Just because you can doesn’t mean you should” and through “Greed, Selfishness, Ignorance, Arrogance, and the Thirst for Power – the U.S. refuses to learn.”
We’ll talk about extremism in every way, shape, and form and its overwhelming role in our new morals, values, and ethics. As is the stock market corruption that’s been around since inception, many things in this book aren’t new and you’ve experienced some of them yourself. But it is the most comprehensive, current analysis and results of our newfound attitude, expectations, fascinations, addictions, lifestyle, recent financial calamity, and state of our society.
There are multiple cancers feeding on us, so each subject is akin to a mini book highlighting and explaining the role and effect of the privileged elite, fanaticism, and those five hideous attributes we refuse to learn from. You don’t have to read every chapter and every facet of our demise to get the picture, pick your favorite subjects if you wish. It’s not important that you know every detail about every cancer the mad sorcerers spread throughout society for their own benefit at the expense of our social conscience. I just want you to open your eyes and realize we’ve been a whipping boy, and like a kid in a candy store, we took the bait hook, line, and sinker. But unlike Timex – we took a licking and did not keep ticking! We’re broken, our problems are extensive, and they can’t be fixed by a band aid here and there. A radical attitude change and makeover is necessary – possibly another revolution!
Hopefully, I’ve filled in the pieces to this sorted puzzle so you can see the entire finished product, and in the end you’ll learn the lessons I did, perhaps even have an epiphany. I’ll hit a sore spot in everyone sooner or later and bust your chops a little, but it’s not just about us individuals as it is the country as a whole, the sum of its parts. Most of the time I’ll be piling heaping helpings of blame on the privileged, so don’t blow a 50 amp fuse and keep reading America… if you can handle “looking in the mirror.”
As the Rockefeller’s realized from their burden of enormous wealth and my grandmother did after the collapse of our social standing; I too now believe that old saying – money is the root of all evil! So like Teddy Roosevelt, I’m taking a contrarian stance and proclaiming “too much” is no good. In the 1960’s and 70’s, when we denounced our over materialistic, self-centered lifestyle that couldn’t compare to our present day one, we realized something we have since forgotten: The voracious predators stalking us are only the means – we are their vehicle!
Since the 1980’s, many of us contrarians have warned of the addictiveness of video games, the internet, social media, and texting that helped take society down a dark path. We warned of the corruption and shaky deals on Wall Street long before the 1987 stock market crash and Savings and Loan disaster that was falsely propped up by the unscrupulous using government insured savings, mortgages, and pension funds. Then they added hedge fund and derivative scams, and this new phenomenon called IRA’s to manufacture insidious CEO bonuses, phantom profits, and market returns. We warned it was imminent that history was to repeat itself time and again with their newfound selfish, abusive attitude and little regulation.
But us unflappable realist were blackballed and ridiculed for decades as being alarmists, malcontents, lunatics, and delusional in attempts to conform and silence us, resulting in the rest of the country being decades and one disaster after another behind. History always vindicates us, so if you weren’t with us before reading this, you better be after! Acquiescence has set in, civil disobedience has been strangled and we’ve fallen for every trick and trap that allowed evil to usurp our power and oligarch rule. We chased the glitz and glamour long enough; a storm is brewing as never seen since the great depression. Social Armageddon is upon us. We hang by a tenuous thread and desperately need your help righting the American ship – and henceforth the world’s – before it’s too late!
My hope is that each and every reader will share in the overall message we’ve all willingly done something that’s led us down this dark path. From those abusing our democracy, freedom, capitalistic system, and the kindness of others to those suckers who unwittingly participate and allow them to do so to those who complain about their politicians, then turn around and vote for them time and time again,we’ve all played our part in this drama. And I myself for too long have selfishly worshiped many of the wrong ideals and ignored my civic duties and responsibility in this choke hold on our dwindling free democracy.
I sincerely hope that you’ll look in the mirror and admit to playing your part too, no matter how small. Have you tried your best to set a good example and guarantee a just and noble society for your kids and future generations by volunteering and participating in your community and country as our forefathers did? Do you help your fellow man as in the old barn-raising days, or have you followed Hollywood, the media, marketing, and greedy narcissists, then passed these values along to your kids. If so – join the crowd sucker, you’ve played right into their hands.
With each wrong answer the oligarchy gets nearer and our society falls further. So ask yourself. What can I do to change the direction I’ve chosen and help turn the tide, to be a better person, a better American, to fulfill my civic duties and make America the country that for generations was the shining beacon of democracy President Kennedy referred to in his inaugural address? To paraphrase Kennedy: “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” If it hurts seeing what this country has become – DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT! DON’T JUST COMPLAIN ABOUT IT!
You say you don’t have the time because you’re too busy with two jobs and raising the kids? I say you don’t have time NOT to do something about it, because your lack of civic engagement has caused your low paying job and that’s why you’re working two jobs to raise your kids! We old farmers know getting up at 4:00 in the morning and working sometimes until 9:00 o’clock at night was what our founding fathers had to do to maintain social justice. They knew a true, equal democracy didn’t come easy and worked day and night to make sure their vision became a reality – and we must too!
To get back on the right path, we can start by being a little nicer to our neighbors and fellow Americans. We need a healthy mind, body, and spirit devoid of materialistic and commercial ideology. We must reinstall civics classes, the arts, and physical education in our schools and communities. Then do what I tell my daughter. Get off of your butt! Shut off your electronic gadgets and get out of the house as previous generations had! If Bill Gates and the late Steve Jobs have seen the light and minimized their kid’s electronic use – why should you and yours be abusing their creations?
We must not follow the plutocrat’s deceitful, destructive, itinerary! Remember the old saying and a main theme of this book – “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should!” Let’s be a little less selfish, compromise, educate ourselves, use some common sense, and return to the days of fiscal and environmental responsibility. Try growing your own garden, working in the yard with your kids, and volunteering in your communities, states, national parks, and forest. We have the greatest national treasures in the world, so let’s support your fellow Americans by traveling here before heading overseas. Then do as the signs say that my little girl put on our bedroom doors to remind us of the most important thing every day – “I will help someone today!” That’s a feeling no amount of self-indulgence or electronics can give you!
It’s the old fashion little things that will give us the foundation we’ll need to rally and pull together as we did in WWII to defeat the modern enemy within our ranks. While the aristocrats and politicians across the board push their inauspicious, selfish, greedy, unsustainable, lifestyles and sail the high seas in their nuclear powered subs and aircraft carriers, we’re in our row boats awaiting their orders.
But there’s hope people! America is finally waking up from the poison apple and millions are hopping on the bandwagon of reform! I’ve personally battled the titans and scaled their mountain so immense that I couldn’t see the top! Yet I didn’t back down and cower in the corner like every shaking fiber of my being wanted to. If a frightened little nobody such as myself shaking in my boots can do it – YOU CAN TOO!!!
So let’s discuss where we stand, how we got there, who is responsible and what we have to do to restore our great society, sink their moral-less mighty fleet, and pull the country back out of “Davy Jones locker.” Because there are other Theodore Roosevelts like Senator Bernie Sanders waiting to bite the hand that feeds them!
PROLOGUE – A Look in the Mirror
What could transform the United States of America from the world power President Kennedy spoke of – into just another crumbling ex-super power?: The same country that preached its democratic form of government, social values, and capitalistic system to the world as a role model for all. Can we put our finger on any one particular reason that could explain the transformation of “THE” richest, most powerful, generous, moral country, empire, or dynasty the world has ever known into the oblivion of history in so many ways?
That answer might depend on your perspective. If you think a country’s fate is predisposed by one major influence, such as their financial institutions or form of government, you could in my opinion oversimplify this downfall. For instance, you could say the Roman Empire and the Third Reich with their superior technology and military might simply expanded until they stretched the seams too far and burst, while ignoring other unpredictable forces, such as disease, weather, food and natural resources. Or, the former United Soviet Socialist Republic (USSR) was doomed from the start under what we called “Communism” from a severe bout of paranoia, ignorance, and propaganda reasons.
I believe the United States of America failed for many reasons that have been festering since the industrial revolution; when like the Romans, Germans, and Russians, need was replaced by greed, and we began to pillage and plunder until it reached critical mass in the late 20th and early 21st century: A form of boom-to-bust, caused by greed, selfishness, special interest, and a corrupt government rotten to the core that you would normally expect from a third world dictatorship or communist country. Then a heavy dose of socially accepted changes with catastrophic consequences pushed by our sensationalistic, propaganda spewing, special interest media, and our refusal to learn from our mistakes finished us off.
We followed Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan’s economic theory of self above all else until democracy, liberty, and freedom were kidnapped! Delusional from privateers, marketing, the stock market boom of the 90’s, and stratospheric home appreciations, expectations changed dramatically and we no longer appreciate what we have.
Imprisoned by our own whims and desires, we feel we’re entitled to the best, and things that were once considered a luxury or treat are now a daily expectation and demand. A feeding frenzy of excess has been embedded in our brains by those who profit most, leaving our priorities and ethics a disgrace and our values disappearing like a ship on a flat earth. We’ve become enraptured by people like original proprietary trader Jay Gould – who was hated and outcast by his peers in the 1850’s as Wall Street’s most despicable trader – yet would be glorified and worshiped today. Humble and contrite, we obediently serve our masters, and the vast majority of people now worship Greenspan’s selfish, opulent lifestyle, Wall Street greed, and the all mighty dollar!
Dozens of websites for kids like Warren Buffett’s animated “Secret Millionaires Club,” with the theme, “the more you learn the more you’ll earn,” and books like “Time for Kids,” get kids thinking like a market tycoon early in life. A national stock market competition for kids as young as ten, combined with financial literacy classes taught at schools nationwide with stock market investments as the main theme, have our kids flooding into Wall Street’s church by graduation. Everyone both young and old continue to buy into Greenspan’s preaching’s with 81% of college freshman now saying they want to get rich above all else, often dooming themselves to jobs they hate and moral dilemmas, while denying themselves fulfilling successful careers. Meanwhile, we are selfishly ignoring the elderly, our neighbors, fellow townspeople, countrymen, and planet, but most importantly, our civic duties that freedom demands.
As if in a trance, we’ve followed the wishes of the Federal Reserve Board (Fed) and Wall Street bankers into becoming a nation of debtors, with the federal government (fed) leading the way by owing $19 trillion, of which 5 trillion is owed to other countries and 1 trillion to individual brokers and corporations. It’s gotten so deplorable since 2000; they turned the Debt Clock back on in New York City way back in 2002. Following the fed’s example, the people have borrowed nearly $12 trillion that many are supposed to pay back on federal minimum wages always decades behind inflation – leaving 77 million adults with debt at collection agencies for more than six months.
Aristocrats continue to abuse, expand, and guard their position with an iron fist Stalin would be proud of until they devastate the lower and middle classes they depend on to get their pot of gold. Now 90% of Americans are poorer than they were in the 1980’s! Sound familiar? Isn’t that the underlying reason all the other major dynasties crumbled? Without a doubt, in my opinion, the four most important factors of our social demise are Greed, Selfishness, Arrogance, and a good old fashion Thirst for Power, often interchangeable and one feeding off the other like a cancer, slowly and agonizingly torturing its unsuspecting victims into submission.
Extremism and gluttony replaced moderation at all levels of society, and fanaticism is as rampant throughout society as the fraud on Wall Street that infiltrated our soul until it tore the country apart at the seams. From gargantuan insurance companies falsifying damage reports after natural disasters to avoid paying claims to mom and pop home repair services – few can be trusted in this new “age of greed!” End of Prologue sample
PIRATES!!! – Hoist the sails! Load the cannons! Batten down the hatches!
Wall Street! New York, New York! Home to the most powerful forces of evil the world has ever known – the New York Stock Ex- change, New York Mercantile Exchange, and a host of the ultimate “Too Big to Fail” financial institutions. Modern day pirates, fraud, and corruption have ruled for decades, lurking around every corner. Nowhere on earth has anyone seen such a Pandora’s Box of greed, power, selfishness, and arrogance assembled in one place and hosted by a city equally willing to burn in Hell. By 1990, it was a place where innocent young college kids were lured and forced into the deepest darkest bowels of Hell by their evil superiors, burning throughout eternity with those who forced them there. Others eagerly went looking for riches never before so easily attainable from a city where 1 in every 22 people is a millionaire. Pirates could never have dreamed of such widespread wealth.
Few escaped this scenario, but those who did, turned against their own evil corporations and joined millions of us fighting them in a massive showdown between the people, Wall Street, K Street, and the government in a movement called “Occupy Wall Street.” In the end though, integrity was banned, and the luckiest and most honest that told their horror stories were easily drowned out by the roar of corruption. Even the Street’s most prized symbols – the bull and bear – represent the strength and oppression of the powerful beast. Like a Greek God, the enormous rampaging bull sits perched outside the market to remind every worker of his duty to the Gods of Wall Street and corporate America, but these are cruel and destructive Gods.
Capitalism was stampeded by fraud, with Wall Street and K Street Super Pac’s partnering with the feds controlling all aspects of life in the United States. Even our “free democracy media” is controlled there. Nearly all money in the U.S. flows through there; and in a country obsessed with wealth, power, and an overly greedy and selfish lifestyle – it became a ticking time bomb. There was no need for our enemies to put any effort into destroying us; we were perfectly capable of pushing the self-destruct button on our own. Just like all the other failed dynasties, the power is focused in one place amongst a very few people. In this country, they are called the top 1%.
How did this all come about? Bankers and Wall Street have been partners in crime since as far back as 1859, when hated Wall Street railway baron Jay Gould began his speculative trading schemes based on short sales. But Joseph P. Kennedy, father of John, Bobby, and Edward (Teddy) Kennedy – End of chapter 1 sample.
2 Proprietary Trading on an Epic Scale – Hedge Funds and Derivatives
Newsflash: “Prosecutors accuse hedge fund company SAC Capital of being a criminal enterprise, where executives, including founder Steven Cohen encouraged insider trading on a scale without precedent.”
The hedge fund and derivative scams hiding in the closet for decades had escaped and were now terrorizing the world. Originally thought up around the time of the Korean War, hedge funds exploded onto the scene in the 1990’s, and along with derivatives, they manipulated the stock market until it reached critical mass and imploded like a black hole, sucking everything down within its reach. Tools of Wall Street barons and investment bankers, hedge funds are secretive, risky, bets on anything even remotely tied to the market, and usually bet on the market or whatever they invest in going either up or down.
They’re supposed to follow the rules under the never publicized Investment Company Act of 1940, and other SEC regulations that set rules on investment companies and their fiduciary responsibilities. Not surprisingly, the act has a few gaping loopholes that allow the very wealthy to gamble as much as they wish, and that old saying “just because you can – doesn’t mean you should,” has no meaning to these selfish, greedy, narcissists. – End of chapter 2 sample.
3 Political Action Committees – Are We Still a Democracy?
NO! It’s just that simple! With insanity at the controls, Wall Street’s power over the state and federal governments led the country into a state of which, short of a miracle, only a civil war declared by the 99%ers could destroy. From this unlimited Capitalistic power came special interest organizations called Political Action Committees (Pac’s) that grew into “Super Pac’s.” Originally small fundraising organizations similar to Parent Teacher Organizations (PTO’s), they morphed into a massive abomination that destroyed democracy when they unofficially replaced the state and federal government in running the country. Like K Street’s ideology, their sole purpose is to get as rich and powerful as they can while pushing the agendas of the insidious aristocrats and the Street’s largest power brokers. As a result, once again Reagan’s trickle-down affect would come into play for all Americans – unfortunately, not in the beneficial way Reagan had envisioned.
Two Princeton and Northwestern University professors have unequivocally verified the over 300 million Americans and mass based interest groups – such as environmental and political reform organizations, have” virtually NO impact on our national policy!” The plutocrats and corporate interest groups get what they want nearly 100% of the time from the U.S. Congress… and you can bet the farm, from many state politicians as well.
How did they get so powerful, and how did that help them play their part in destroying the United States of America? – End of chapter 3 sample
4 Our Dishonorable Government
As feared by our founding fathers, by the 21st century, the brilliant and visionary independent democratic form of government they instituted was besieged by corruption and multiple parties. It’s now an outdated liability without the reforms necessary to be effective in the modern world. The over 200 year old constitution that doesn’t even recognize we’ve had an Air Force (originally called the Army Air division) since 1918, has become not only the oldest in the world but mostly obsolete. With politicians and special interest groups abusing the outdated system in mass, we became perhaps the most corrupt nation on the face of the earth. Because opposite to what our grandparents had taught us – honesty, morals, and ethics – selflessness and greed is the order of the day for governments across the land.
There is a complete lack of both morals and ethics that escalated with the stock market boom of the 1990’s. It seems like white collar crimes at every level of the corporate and political ladder are on trial daily around the country for every conceivable violation of law you could imagine. After the most powerful and notorious Super PAC lobbyist Jack Abramoff and 21 others went to prison for corrupting public officials, tax evasion, and fraud wrote a book detailing his life of crime bribing congressman and how he did it, then listing some of the people he did business with – you would think the new political ideology might be forced to change their ways. But as Will Rogers said: “We have the best politicians money can buy.”
In a lecture at Georgetown University in Washington D.C., he told us: “I spent $1.5 million a year on sports tickets alone in order to get policymakers to come with me so that I would have an opportunity to influence them and have them indebted to me in some way.” Then went on about his lobbying years when he was king of the lobbyist and represented everyone from Native American casino owners to Russian energy companies, and buying that access is corrupt. He got to “100 congressmen,” including his good friends’ Republican house majority leader Tom DeLay and ally Bob Ney through their chief of staffs. Yet considered that a failure “because that leaves 335 offices that we didn’t have a strong influence over.” Bob Ney – who wanted to become Speaker of the House – admitted they were in a “culture of corruption” and were in violation of the gift limit laws, along with many others. Then added, for lobbyist to make money they have to take it away from other lobbyist in an intense special interest competition.
Abramoff owned a bar that President George W. Bush’s staffers packed daily and often conducted illegal business right out in the open. They tacked on special legislation to bills that were as confusing as derivatives and Ney claimed nobody read. – End of chapter 4 sample
5 Our $69 Million Piece of Pie – Pure Gluttony at its Worst
Don’t you just love pie? I could buy 25 million of them with the money our town and state spent on 1 grandiose piece. In our state, the School Building Authority that’s controlled by special interest and fueled by an inexhaustible supply of taxpayer money is a financial “death star” for all.
In this state, .01% of the sales tax goes to a special department for school construction and renovations. I know this doesn’t seem like much, but even in a small state like ours it adds up to $400-$500 million a year. With the state paying an average of 50-60 percent of the cost from this guaranteed money, it’s often used for unnecessary construction of new schools, enlargement of others, and costly frills to get rid of the excess money.
Any logical person would tell you it should be put into state coffers, where the money could be used on other infrastructure projects, such as our dilapidated roads, bridges, sewers, and sustainable energy projects (considering we import 100% of our energy). Still, the state insiders keep pushing the fallacy that classrooms with fewer than 20 students per teacher do much better than those with more.
That fallacy, like the theory of trickle-down economics, is just that: A theory that survey after survey has discredited. It’s hogwash with absolutely no merit and I can prove it! As our student population has gone from nearly 2200 students to 1600, there was no discernible difference in our state test scores – recently they’ve actually been getting worse! In fact, as our student population has plummeted, our math and science scores have gone with them! My daughter’s average class size dropped from 22 to around 14 and her scores, like many teenagers, still dropped from the tougher standards, teenage crushes, and electronic distractions, dispelling any lies about smaller class sizes makes for more individual teaching, better test scores, and smarter students. – End of chapter 5 sample.
6 Education From my School Committee Perch
This is one field I can give you the true insiders scoop. Believe me, people running our educational system “do not” want us outsiders to know the details, and like politicians and Wall Street, hide behind a shield of secrecy. Education is a political pawn, big business punching bag full of pompous, arrogant, selfish, extremist hell-bent on destroying our kids – and thus our future. Politics and K Street special interest have taken over right down to small town America education. With yearly stock market competitions for kids as young as 10 years old instituted in curriculums across the nation disguised as part of the math program, the Street’s preaching’s have infiltrated our schools… and the brainwashed and hypnotized masses don’t even notice.
When I first read about it in our schools monthly newsletter, I was so furious I almost pulled my daughter out of the public school system and home schooled her. To make matters worse, the competitions are sponsored by our district congressman. I can’t believe our society has sunk this low! I actually saw a tip on how to practice math published by “Resources for Educators” in my daughters May, 2013 newsletter that read: “Encourage your middle grader to play the stock market. Using $1,000 in play money, she can invest in companies that make her favorite products like jeans and cell phones. Have her follow the stocks online or in the newspapers and calculate her gains and losses. She also might try a free online trading game like weeseed.com or hold a family competition to see who can make the biggest profit.”
After the townspeople asked me to be on the School Committee in an attempt to restore some common sense, honesty, and dignity back to our out of control school district, I protested this unthinkable action. But we aren’t the only ones playing the market, it’s the entire country, and they’re being sponsored by the ALEC controlled state congressman. – End of chapter 6 sample.
7 Immigration – Is it Out of Control?
Welcome to flight training! The first thing you need to know as a pilot is drug runners will try and hire you to smuggle in drugs and coyotes illegal aliens under the radar screens into uncontrolled airspace in the desert. That’s what our instructor told us the first day in Southern California!
Immigration policy, or lack of one, has contributed to our demise in a number of ways, despite the fact we stole many other countries brightest people to advance our own. Union Democrats want strict border controls because they want to keep their union jobs, medical insurance, 401’s, pension plans, and decent living wages. And Liberal Democrats unrealistically want to give everyone on the planet a chance for a better life. Republicans want low minimum wages and literally no immigration policy. Along with an open border with Mexico so they can hire both the legal and illegal workers for their factories, plants, and farms for next to nothing, with few if any benefits. They also need the tens of millions of Latinos and their kids to boost Christianity’s dwindling numbers. – End of chapter 7 sample.
8 Environment Versus Energy Hogs
Newsflash: January 28, 1969: A massive 3 million gallon oil spill off the Santa Barbara coast covers 800 square miles of the Pacific Ocean with the thick crude – suffocating dolphins, seals, and everything in its path.
That spill led to the establishment of Earth Day through the efforts of U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson and conservative co-chairman Republican Paul (Pete) McCloskey, who led the environmental movement in Congress and the country into a 20 million person protest of our polluted country. Sen. Nelson’s environmental stance eventually ended with President Clinton giving him the highest honor a civilian can get – the Medal of Freedom.
Our former bipartisan Congress and the extremely rich titans of industry were united in doing something to protect our planet and joined the rest of us on that first earth day April 22nd 1970. In an interview with NBC’s legendary newsman Hugh Downs, McCloskey said: “Well I can only speak for the industrialist and congressman that I have seen, and in the last two years, I’ve seen all resistance evaporate. There’s no one in Congress today that will say I’m against the environment.” He claimed politicians knew if they weren’t on board, the young people would vote against them – and an environmental revolution seemed inevitable.
Republican Richard Nixon was in the White House and pollution was a severe health threat nationwide. Power plants were spewing out enormous amounts of carcinogens and toxins like heavy metals into our air and water, while farms poised our wells, aquifers, and waterways with pesticides like DDT and atrazine. Many streams, rivers, lakes, and everything in them were dead or dying, and the fish too poisonous to eat. Lake Erie was declared a dead zone, with its fish belly up, dying by the millions and stinking up entire towns for miles. The Sultan Sea in California’s Imperial Valley went from a vacation playground for the stars, to a stinky salt-marsh deprived of life sustaining oxygen. End of chapter 8 sample.
9 Our Dysfunctional Government
You would think with the stock market booming and President Clinton putting out the first balanced budget in two decades under the new Balanced Budget Act, along with the U.S. being the last standing Superpower, it would be as impossible to conceive us imploding into “third world” like status as it was the collapse of the mighty Soviet Union. Yet here we were, just ten short years later doing just that with 536 master thespian special interest proxies at the helm in Washington D.C.
Both the Republicans and Democrats became so radically right and left, former House Speaker John Boehner started complaining about, and picking on, his own tea party members. Republicans abused every trick in the book to derail the Obama express and used the previously seldom used filibuster so many times (about 500) Senate majority leader Harry Reid said: “It’s so bad around here that they filibuster their own bills.” And President Obama had to use his Executive powers to appoint people at key positions in order to circumvent their frequent short recesses used to stall appointments to agencies they didn’t like, nor want. Things in Washington had gotten so extreme, Reed proclaimed: “Working with my Senate colleagues reminds me of chasing one of these little pigs in a greased pig contest.” People are so disenfranchised; the former theatrical pro wrestler Jessy Ventura won the governor’s seat in Minnesota over his experienced opponents.
Our political leaders became beholden to Wall Street and then hid behind a shield of secrecy. President’s Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and son George W. with their big oil, big business, K Street White House, along with the slippery Bill Clinton could take the blunt of the blame for that, as they partnered to systematically shred our country into oblivion. – End of chapter 9 sample.
10 Two Bank Meltdowns in Twenty Years And Other Scams
What caused two massive investment bank and dozens of corporate melt-downs in just twenty years? Did America learn nothing from the near meltdown of 1907 that was only avoided by the intervention of J.P. Morgan and led to the establishment of the Federal Reserve six years later? Did it learn nothing from the 1929 crash, how about the 1987 one, or the Savings and Loan disaster in full swing at the same time? Oh yes! I almost forgot our bailout of hedge fund companies Long Term Capital Management (LTC) in 1998 and Amaranth in 2006, the forerunners of the Bear Sterns, Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers, Washington Mutual, and American International Group’s (AIG) titanic failures. Once again, I’m sure you all know the answer, still, I thought you might want to know some of the details to the latest one – and believe me, it doesn’t take a crystal ball to know – IT WON’T BE THE LAST.
By the second quarter of 2014, banks had lent as much money (8.11 trillion) as they had just before the gargantuan collapse of 2008-09 and mortgage lenders were even worse. With the mega-banks renting out their New York City offices in their corporate headquarters to the very same government agencies that are supposed to be regulating them – “do you really think this isn’t going to happen again?” – End of chapter 10 sample.
11 New York City and the Media
New York, New York – so bad they had to name it twice! It was summed up best in the movie Ghost Busters II, when Vigo the Carpathian came back to life and Dr. Peter Venkman told him “Only a moron would come back and choose New York City!”
Sadly, other movies and TV shows like Welcome Back Kotter, All in the Family, and dozens of others have accurately pointed out – it really is the axis of evil and largest cog in society’s great downfall. Originally our young nation’s capital, it has been on the threshold of Hell with flames licking at its feet for more than a century. It’s the birthplace and center of the oligarchy, and everyone from the richest scheisters to gangs, street hustlers, drug dealers and prostitutes peddle their evil wares. The place we worship its richest and poorest is a bastion of pestilence, spreading its tentacles across the globe. It’s been the most crime ridden, varmint infested, fraudulent, sleaziest, low life, blood sucking, cockroach infested city in the world for generations. – End of chapter 11 sample.
12 Electronics – Environmental and Social Genocide or Savior?
Newsflash: Google hires Wall Street insider Ruth Porat of Morgan Stanley as Chief Financial Officer for $70 million a year, as the exodus from Wall Street to Silicon Valley continues.
The United States had for all practical purposes brought the world into the electronic age by the 1990’s with companies like Apple, Intel, and Microsoft leading the way. Large mainframe computer capabilities of the 70’s from companies like IBM and Digital Equipment Corporation were shrunk down to a homeowner’s version we’re all familiar with, personal computers (PC’s). Then within a couple of decades, they were shrunk down again to mind blowing miniature sizes that merged with and fit into a cell phone. But are quite honestly too small for some of us to easily use and cause many people a variety of mental and physical problems. Computers also brought about miracles in technology never dreamed possible, from medicine and robotics to outer space and the Nano world. Even wars are fought from comfortable bunkers that save thousands of battle field lives. Leaving enthusiastic manufacturers blindly seeing themselves as saviors, while ignoring the Pandora’s Box they opened but could not control. – End of chapter 12 sample.
13 Medical and Insurance Fraud – Are We Just Guinea Pigs?
THE WORLDS LARGEST DRUG ADDICTS! The headline says it all. We are the world’s largest drug addicts, both prescription and illegal. We consume 99% of all the hydrocodone and 80% of opioid pills despite having only 4.6% of the world’s population. We’ve got the money, and where there’s money there’s always someone willing to take it from you. Like so many things you’ve read about thus far, 1,350 lobbyist and nearly $100 million a year spent lobbying had our laborious Food and Drug Administration (FDA), doctors, and bureaucrats doling out 227 million opioid prescriptions in 2015, leaving tens of thousands of mothers and their babies addicted.
A Medicare government report reveals 28% of the $64 billion paid out to individual providers goes to just 3% of them. From medical equipment manufacturers and their sales fleets to the pharmaceutical industry, doctors, hospitals, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities – Wall Street profits rein. They’re all incessantly in the news for Medicare and Medicaid fraud and are more than willing to join the party with the most profitable con jobs they can brew up. Thanks to the estimated $100 billion a year in fraud (half of our annual deficiency) we spend nearly double that of the highly successful Germans on health care, who have a system based on both the free market and the government working successfully in public-private partnerships. In Germany if a person or family can’t afford private insurance, the government steps in similar to our Medicaid, but it’s much more willing and successful in controlling incentive based fraud and costs. That’s our kryptonite! – End of chapter 13 sample.
14 The Legal System
“The Washington Redskins are sued again over their team name and logo!” With a country of over a million attorneys, we have an attorney for every 274 people in the U.S. and nothing is off limits. We became a country predisposed by worry that we’d be sued at any time by just about anyone, from homeowners afraid someone will slip on the ice to municipalities worried they could be sued for kids taking peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to school. Attorneys joined special interest, Wall Street, the mental health profession, and aristocrats in abusing the country at will. Now everything is settled in court. Not exactly the vision our founding fathers had in mind, who couldn’t possibly have predicted such abuse of the court system in their worst nightmares.
Television commercials for law firms dubbed “ambulance chasers” plaster the airwaves daily. From prescription drugs that may have injured you to car accidents and hospital malpractice lawsuits, we’re pushed tirelessly by the ambulance chasers to sue everybody. Whether we make a poor decision ourselves or the other party doesn’t matter, as long as we can find someone breaking one of the million or so local, state, and federal laws – we sue! Whether we have a legitimate case or even a case at all doesn’t matter either! We still roll into courts like wave after wave at high tide and file lawsuit after lawsuit, then get the defendants to settle out of court knowing 90% of all cases are settled that way. Only about 10% ever make it all the way to a trial because it’s much easier, cheaper, and safer to settle out of court than take your chances on an unfavorable decision by a judge or jury. Either way, like stockbrokers, lawyers get paid enormous amounts of money – win or lose! – End of chapter 14 sample.
News flash: Miguel Cabrera gets $292 million 10 year contract, Giancarlo Stanton a 15 year 325 million one and pitchers David Price and David Kershaw punch in at 217 million and 215 respectfully. As is par for the course – greed, selfishness, and insanity are at the helm of our $15 billion dollar a year pro sporting world and $7.5 billion college one. Some owners never learned from the Babe Ruth trade and give one player so much money trying to draw in fans; they have no money for the other ones, often leaving the team with little talent, years of mediocrity, and fewer fans.
All major sports have gone mad. Our national pastime “baseball” has taken the most fun event of the year – the All Star Game, and turned it into- End of chapter 15 sample.
Is the “not so United States” still a religious country? Has it ever been, or is this just a myth? We’ve always been sold the picture of the pilgrims and colonist getting up early and traveling long distances by horse and buggy to attend Sunday church. Hollywood portrayed it as the day of worship where all families spent most of the day serving god. The truth is, our founding fathers were Unitarians but only about one-fifth of the people attended church. If anyone tells you our founding fathers based this country on the principles of a religious society – they’re dead wrong! Like the misconception that everyone on the Mayflower was a strict Catholic or follower of the Church of England, rather than part of the crew or a trade specialist; they used religion as a uniting force with unalienable rights but were adamant about separating church from state.
Overall, Caucasians are about as religious as they were in the 20th century but more religious than at the time of the American Revolution. But in recent decades, many Caucasians have recently dropped out who classified themselves as Christian. In fact, about one-fifth now belong to the party of the “none’s” – the fastest growing segment of society. – End of chapter 16 sample.
17 Our Military Complex
Newsflash: Not heading President Eisenhower’s warning, U.S. Army Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson drops a bomb and declares U.S. a country of perpetual war in the name of weapons manufacturers, defense contractors, and power hungry politicians. US General Wesley Clark, Ex Supreme Allied Commander NATO, quotes from memo, we’re going to take out seven countries in five years and nobody knows why.
Believe it or not, even the military started its ties to Wall Street way back during the revolutionary war, when the North instituted a naval blockade of all shipping ports to cut off the South’s main source of income – cotton sales to Europe. Unable to sell their cotton abroad, the cotton markets crashed and forced the starving southerner’s into surrender or starve to death. It was such a cruel fate, General Grant went against protocol and aided the enemy when he saw the nearly dead soldiers that are now compared to the concentration camp victims of WWII. He called them the “walking dead.” – End of chapter 17 sample.
18 The Presidential Address
“A house divided against itself cannot stand”- Abraham Lincoln (R) Illinois
I love looking back at history to prove nothing ever really changes in politics. It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about Lincoln’s day or now, you’ll find nothing has really changed. Let’s look at the 2010 State of the Union Address to see if history is yet again repeating itself.
We used to love watching the State of the Union Address. Years ago when I was growing up, it was on everyone’s watch list, from elementary school kids to senior citizens. People were more involved in their communities and the political process, we even had civic classes. I remember when President Nixon, Ford, or Carter came on TV we didn’t want to miss it. It was a big event for many of us, and we would talk about it at school both before and after the speech. We loved imitating “tricky Dick Nixon,” because of his shenanigans. His jowls would shake when he spoke, and just watching him shake them and giving his famous two armed peace sign was worth watching. But in recent years the address has turned into more of a media circus, and 2010’s was the most entertaining yet, with posturing on both sides leading up to the big night and cameras placed to show both the president and the Congress at several angles to catch the fireworks.
The speech started off with a rousing ovation for Obama when he mentioned pushing through a bipartisan jobs creation bill. Both houses stood and cheered – though that’s as far as the bipartisanship would go.- End of Presidential Address Sample.
Epilogue – Can America be Saved?
The United States democratic form of government has been under strain and embroiled in turmoil since its inception. Corruption and dirty politics has been rampaging through every orifice of society since the first settlers in Virginia and slowly multiplied in scope until it became the normal way of doing business at all levels of society.
The Kennedys could very well have been the most openly corrupt of the famous politicians. We talked earlier about Joe Kennedy’s rise to power, his ties to the mafia, and his bootlegging during the alcohol prohibition era. But that barely touched the surface of how unscrupulous he really was and what he taught his kids. His son John picked up where he left off in his love for mob bosses and womanizing, and became president through his dad’s connections to the underworld and friends like Chicago’s Mayor Daily. John’s relationship with the mafia continued through his short presidency, when he hired them to partner with the (CIA) to assassinate Fidel Castro. Never before or since has a family of the Kennedy’s stature been so close to a collection of criminals. Even Kennedy’s Vice President and successor Lyndon B. Johnson was accused of rigging votes with the infamous “box 13” in his home state of Texas. Democracy, more often than not, is captured by the greed of capitalism.
Along the way there have been a few great people in defense of democracy. Teddy Roosevelt, for instance, the sickly kid who became a burly, good hearted, hard core environmentalist. Like Hyacinth on the British TV series “Keeping up Appearances,” he knew for most people it was just an accident of birth they weren’t important. Part dictator, socialist, imperialist, and progressive democratic capitalist, he declared war on the affluent and proclaimed too big and too much was no good. “You can stand for humanity or stand for the privileged” he bellowed at his Republican Party! – End of samples.
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