ALEC is a pay-to-play operation where corporations buy a seat and a vote on ‘task forces’ to advance their legislative wish lists and get a tax break for donations, passing these lobbying costs on to taxpayers.
Corporations fund almost all of ALEC's operations.
More than 98% of ALEC's revenues come from sources other than legislative dues, such as corporations, corporate trade groups, and corporate foundations.
ALEC describes itself as a non-partisan, non-profit organization. The facts show that it currently has one Democrat out of 104 legislators in leadership positions.
Unelected corporate representatives (often registered lobbyists) sit as equals with elected representatives on nine task forces where they have a “voice and a vote” on model legislation.
Although ALEC claims to take an ideological stance (of supposedly "Jeffersonian principles of free markets, limited government, federalism, and individual liberty"), many of the model bills benefit the corporations whose agents write them, shape them, and/or vote to approve them.
ALEC makes old-fashioned lobbying obsolete.
Once legislators return to their state with corporate-sponsored ALEC legislation in hand, the legislators themselves become “super-lobbyists” for ALEC’s corporate agenda, eliminating the middleman.
Zach…..Good call here.
In the U.S., policing forces first originated as Slave Patrols, to surveil and capture runaway slaves, which were the private property of slaveholders…..and were to be returned alive.
With the unfolding of the Industrial Revolution, came an ever increasing amount of wealth concentration in a small number of business owners and their allied administrators, while vast numbers of industrial workers lived in abject poverty.
This naturally and ultimately led to an increasing amount of threats to the private property of the wealthy by the much larger group of people who had little or no wealth. Those living in abject poverty far outnumbered those with wealth.
So, with slavery abolished, the focus of the police patrols became the protection of the private property of the wealthy as well as keeping the wage slaves in their designated apartheid zones (ghettos).
And today the same sort of economic inequality is increasing more each year along with the increase in gated ‘apartheid-like’ developments to keep the rif-raf of have-nots away from the wealthy parasites.
The police patrols of today are not tasked with keeping the ‘wage’ slaves alive, so a couple of shots does the trick……with no protest from the ‘protected’.
These organizations are doing a great thing here, but what always seems to get ignored with this sort of story is why so many kids and adults need these meals in order to get enough to eat.
The reason why is because the economic system they live in relentlessly drives more and more people into extreme poverty while a fraction of the population gets wealthier and wealthier.
Those who control the vast majority of the wealth in this country, along with their tools in government, the school system, public relations and the media, have done a fabulous job of indoctrinating the remainder of the public with the belief that it’s their fault if they are poor, while the real reason is because the economic game is rigged to funnel the majority of the created wealth into the hands of the parasites at the top of the economic pyramid scheme.
The greatest transfer of wealth in history just occurred during the current recession, with trillions of dollars of wealth flowing from the bottom 90% of the population into the hands of the top 10%, and the public is so brainwashed that they just let it happen with virtually no response.
The sooner that the citizens in ‘the land of the free’ knock off the phony posthumous patriotism related to the Southeast Asia slaughter and recognize that the celebrated and memorialized overt and covert perpetrators were either mass murderers or accessories to mass murder, the sooner this country can begin its healing process from that murderous war and move on to healing from subsequent murderous wars.
Time to bring out the willfully ignorant flag wavers and Southeast Asia holocaust deniers.
A holocaust complements of US military industrial complex orchestrated by its puppetmasters.
Between 1964 and 1973, the United States dropped around 2.5 million tons of bombs on Laos.
The equivalent of a planeload of bombs every eight minutes for nine years, or a ton of bombs for every person in the country.
Let that sink in……..
While the American public was focused on the murderous war in neighboring Vietnam, the US military was waging a devastating covert campaign to cut off North Vietnamese supply lines through the small Southeast Asian country.
More than 100 Laotians fall victim to unexploded cluster bombs annually, delayed casualties of Operation Barrel Roll and Operation Steel Tiger, which dropped 270 million cluster bomblets.
Blaming an impersonal market and individual failures for the stagnation of wages, doesn’t come close to fully explaining the thirty-five-year decline.
The Real Reasons Wages Stay Low:
Lack of Full Employment….Which is deliberately prevented to reduce individual bargaining power.
Corporate Structure….Corporations are now run for shareholders only, with profits not leading to investments. Labor contingency and the franchise model mean that the workers are squeezed and money is directed upward.
Economic Regulations…..Union membership has been deliberately driven down by half in the last 30 years, from 20% to 10%......a result of the relentless assault on unions by the Capitalist Class since the 1930’s.
The real value of the minimum wage has fallen by a third since 1968.
Whether it’s letting the real value of the minimum wage decline, making it harder to unionize, or creating bankruptcy laws and intellectual-property regimes that primarily benefit capital and the 1 percent, the way the government tools of the Capitalist Class structure markets is responsible for weakening labor and causing wages to stay stuck.
Whenever someone starts talking about the ‘free market,’ it’s a good idea to look around for the man with the gun.
And Follow The Money
Although the issues regarding circus animal cruelty have gained much-needed attention in recent years, circus animals still suffer from lives of prison-like confinement, social deprivation and violent methods of training.
There has been a strong focus on the abuse of elephants for several decades, with Ringling Bros. finally agreeing to stop using them in their circus acts, but similar abuse still exists for the remaining animals used by Ringling and many other circuses.
Circus animals do not willingly stand on their heads, jump through rings of fire, or ride bicycles. They don’t perform these tricks because they want to and they don’t do any of these meaningless acts in their natural habitat. The ONLY reason circus animals perform is because they are scared of what will happen to them if they don’t.
The circus would like people to think that these intelligent and sentient creatures perform because they are positively reinforced with food, praise etc. There is no such thing as positive reinforcement for animals in the circus - only varying levels of punishment, neglect, and deprivation.
These students are to be commended for their part in ending this abuse.
The animals can’t speak for themselves.
Bill………Why is it you don’t plead to have one of the ‘real news reporters’ at the Weekly do the investigation?
This would seem to be a no-brainer here, wouldn’t it?
On the other hand the no-brainer here is that the Weekly isn’t actually an alternative news source, but is primarily a source for mainstream news along with stories on various options for local sedation, entertainment and distraction.
Another no-brainer here is why alternative news sources have never been widespread until the internet came along………and that’s because print media relies heavily on advertising to pay its bills and advertising is paid for primarily by businesses, many of which have a vested interest in keeping the public ignorant about a wide spectrum of shady dealings and crony connections.
Particularly crony connections with government, since the majority of those in government, are bought and paid for by the parasites in the Business Class.
Just another no-brainer…….if you’ve been paying attention.
So Bill…..you’re on your own here since this sort of alternative journalism is only going to be allowed in an opinion column like yours, which means you’ve got to do the leg work that others won’t.
Follow The Money………..
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