1. Francois T

    Ferguson is absolutely right: “Either we all pay a little, or special interests pay for it all and control it all.”

    Note also what a lying sack of turd the Republican lawyer was when he conflated “government” with “public campaign contributions”. It is so transparent that he wants corporations to stay in control.

    1. Art Eclectic

      I’m not so sure it’s just corporations he wants to stay in control – more like “big money” which doesn’t always mean corporations.

      Personally, I genuinely believe that our political class thinks the voters are too stupid to be allowed any say in how the country is run. Those decisions should be left up to the “productive” class.

  2. Abe, NYC

    The Eddie Murphy movie “Distinguished Gentleman” says all you need to know about the US political system. Directed by Jonathan Lynn BTW, who also shot “Yes, Minister” and “Yes, Prime Minister.”

    The system can’t be fixed, it must be dismantled and rebuilt. I’m desperately searching for hope but finding little. The best shot seems to be a Greatest Depression. That might spur real change, but then it might not.

  3. Psychoanalystus


    IMHO, PBS is under complete corporate control. I used to listen to Charlie Rose until this time 2 years ago, when, as the markets were crashing, his guests, including Paulson and CEOs of most TBTFs were parading through his studio lying through their teeth, while Charlie was just sitting there nodding in approval like some kind of idiot. He continues today in the same style.

    But there something else I wish to say about PBS. As a psychologist who has worked with children, I want to warn parents to keep their children away from things like Sesame Street and the likes. Those were designed by psychologists for inner-city children who received deficient development and are showing symptoms of ADHD. However, studies show similar shows can actually induce symptoms of ADHD (hyperactivity, inattention, aggression, etc). Of course the children programming garbage that is on cable is even worse. Personally, I let my 4-year old daughter watch the very old Dismey movies like Dumbo, 101 Dalmatians, Aristocats, and others, but not things like Mickey Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck. I look for things that aren’t fast paced, have a long story line, and the scene does not change too quickly. Of course, video games are an absolute no-no. 

    It works nicely for BigPharma. Both parents have to work to make ends meet, turn child care over to the TV, and create children with severe life-long disabilities that will take meds ’till they die. Protect your children because this country’s BigPharma is after them with a vengeance. The next criminal thing you should expect from BigPharma, AMA, and that criminal profession called psychiatry is the pushing of purely adult psychiatric disorders down onto children. You will see that in the upcoming version 5 of the DSM (psych diagnostic manual). Things like schizophrenia, bipolar, etc. Even personality disorders — in children! Can you believe that?! What founders of psychology like Erikson, Klein, Winnicott, and Anna Freud called normal child developmental stages is now going to be pathologized and medicated with expensive drugs. Things like daydreaming in a 3-year old is going to be pathologized. Unbelievable! Totally criminal. And, uniquely American. 

    And, one more thing. If your child did receive an ADHD diagnosis, make sure he or she (usually “he”) is receiving stimulants, but not antipsychotics. With antipsychotics your child is quite likely to get irreversible Parkinson-like symptoms while still a young man. Half a million American children are given antipsychotics for ADHD and another 3 million stimulants. 

    Protect your kids. This monstrous media and medical system is out to destroy then for a fistful of filthy dollars. 

    And by the way, I get a lot of my information from programs like Amy Goodman’s Democracy Now. They don’t take corporate money. Highly recommended. 

    Hope this helps some parents out there. 


    1. wunsacon

      >> I used to listen to Charlie Rose until this time 2 years ago, when, as the markets were crashing, his guests, including Paulson and CEOs of most TBTFs were parading through his studio lying through their teeth, while Charlie was just sitting there nodding in approval like some kind of idiot.

      OMG — you are not alone!

    2. Jim the Skeptic

      I watched Charlie Rose a couple of years ago and noted that he was not up to the job in interviews on the economy. He would invite guests in and turn the program over to them with very very few interruptions.

      That changed after about 6 months to a year.

      He asks good questions and gets much more information. His program is never going to be an in depth investigation but it does offer an overview for those not following the economic news daily.

    3. Kevin de Bruxelles

      Thanks for that. The other advice would be to get your children the hell out of America but I guess that is a little unrealistic for many people.

      You are so right about the pacing of video for children. Luckily (actually luck had nothing to do with it) my children are trilingual (English, French and Swedish) so we have lots of video options. Swedish children’s entertainment is typically very slowly paced with the long story lines you described. Sesame Street is just a feel-good starter drug that leads to the heavy crack of Nickelodeon. French children’s TV is a little too close to the American version but they do have some great science shows. One is called “C’est pas sorcier” and for kids above say six it explains very complex phenomena in a way they (and adults!) can understand. Another series called “Il etait une fois” explains biology, history, and geology for children. These two series are very hard to find in English although they are translated into many other European languages.

    4. Bonesetter Brown

      No more Charlie Softball, please.

      I’ll take lots of helpings from blogs, and I get harder hitting analysis from Jon Stewart and Glenn Beck.

      Old media will die with the generation that was raised on it.

      The electronic media of radio and television began the move away from printed newspaper. The internet is completing it.

      The internet will impact the reform of Democratic Socialism the way the printing press impacted Luther’s reform of the Church.

  4. Charles Peterson

    PBS is bad, but it still has occasional gems in Frontline and other programs.

    NewsHour and “balanced” news programs on PBS like that have been basically worthless since 1981, and no coincidence either. Just like corporate media, it can’t offend conservatives, the political spectrum runs from center to far right.

    There once was a time when you could watch an actual socialist, Michael Harrington, on Firing Line at least (don’t know about NewsHour, but it did seem much better to me in the 1970’s).

    NPR has been even worse that PBS since 2001. There’s nothing there but rants by conservative think tanks, either in their own voice or the anchors.

    1. jest

      I never understood the love affair with NPR either.

      Psychoanalystus is right about Democracy Now; Amy Goodman is the best there is right now. Rachel Maddow is probably one of the best in her generation, which isn’t saying much, and Yves is fantastic too.

      I don’t think the fact that they are all women is a coincidence either.

    2. curlydan

      And watch NPR slowly creep like a vine through the non-commercial radio space, buying out or taking over truly local non-comm stations. CPB backed NPR affiliates have been taking over many college radio stations as the colleges try to cash in on an endowment challenged economy.

      In Houston, Rice University engaged in a year of secret negotiations and sold its totally local student run radio station, KTRU 91.7FM, for $9.5M to the University of Houston’s NPR affiliate, so UofH can have one 24 hr NPR news station and one 24 hr classical station (neither of which has much in terms of student participation). Of course, the 24 hr NPR news station will be almost all canned national and repetitive content. When are we going to take the non-commercial label off of the increasingly expanding NPR brand?

      Help save local radio!

    1. Jim the Skeptic

      Yes, I will take the Newshour over any evening news program.

      NPR seems to be another matter completely. It has drifted way too far to the Liberal side. Conservative callers quickly get the hook. I don’t call, but it is irritating to see the conversation so one sided.

      Do they see themselves as the offsetting alternative to Fox News or what?

  5. sux2bme

    The money is only a symptom of the problem so attempts to control the money will always fail. The root cause is the pervasiveness of government regulation, control and intrusion into everything.

    No matter who you are, where you are or what you do, you have an interest in getting favorable treatment from government or your competition getting unfavorable treatment. That is the driver for the ever increasing spending on lobbying and campaigns.

    Until this changes, the money is like water flows. It will divert itself around any artificial barrier or build up till it breaches containment and floods whatever is below.

    1. Meg

      That’s a confusing basket of points you’ve got there. Let me see if I understand you: If corporate taxes didn’t exist, then corporations wouldn’t pressure Congress for “special” tax breaks? Yeah, I don’t see the problem the same way. I think the root is the power of an exclusive, dominant class to band together and write its own legislation. A few hundred feudal lords have a special ear to the king that millions of everyday peasants do not. Even if I believe that government is intruding into my life in malicious ways (which I do), there is little that I could do about it. Another way of putting it: the only interest group getting “unfavorable treatment” from government is the American people.

      If you’re saying that the government creates special interests because it seeks to meddle in our lives, I could easily reverse that premise by stating: special interests meddle in (and water-down) what might be strong, forceful regulation of a useless industry (I’m thinking of the Dodd-Frank Bill, 2005 Bankruptcy Bill, every bill for Telcoms). Moreover, corporations don’t simply purchase “less regulation” from a politician like buying milk with less than 2% fat. Usually what they get is a guaranteed flow of money to their own corporate coffers, incongruous to the free market. See: Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

      PBS just scratched the surface. I really wish someone would break out some William Domhoff. In his work, “Who Rules America?” http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/ he talks about the “class-domination theory of power” in the US. It would be great if the media would expose the process by which this class accumulates and maintains its power. This is a DOMINANT class because it shapes candidates, opinions, and policy–and these policies are generally accepted by Americans. This dominant class could even turn your argument, sux2bme, into an excuse for lobbying government in their interests. I can just hear them whine: “But…if we don’t put money into this campaign, government will DESTROY us with regulation!” Yeah, right. That fear evaporated a long time ago.

  6. Amit Chokshi

    PBS is still far better than corp media…do peopel consider Faux even real news or just brainwashing?

    Bill Moyers is a legend, awful that he called it quits in times like these.

    MSNBC is getting better. Maddow is awesome, Lawrence O’Donnell while being a 90s Clinton type is great, youtube his recent show where he had 4 teabaggers on and asked them about socialism and what plans they would cut


    Teabaggers are just mongrels, this country deserves the financial crisis when we have people like this that are happily ignorant. Koch bros will have these people shining their shoes w/kids from China…

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