Tag Archives: Citizens united

Random thoughts to start a new year…Quantum Time, New Dark Ages, Beer Entropy, Movies in Comfort, Books, Fine Coffee, and more

Here are some odds and ends before we set our calendars back 1,000 years on January 20th. I thought of the quantum time ambiguity (sounds like a Big Bang Theory episode title) the other day when driving and realized I had a few more pseudo-random thoughts jockeying for attention…

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True Patriotism in America

Despite the unfathomable killing, killing, incongruous brutality, stupidity, monumental stupidity all over the headlines, there are still severely misguided people bizarrely upset over something else entirely insignificant by comparison. I’ve not weighed in publicly, or even privately, on a the matter of Colin Kaepernick refusing to stand during the playing of the national anthem at a football game, and after considerable reflection – and still seeing angry posts about it on The Facebook –  I’ve decided to share some thoughts on the matter.

seal_of_the_united_states_department_of_the_navy-svgBefore I go further, in case you don’t know this, I am a 20 veteran of the United States Navy. I served both as an enlisted man and and officer in the cec-emblemCivil Engineer Corps, finishing my career in South Korea, at “the [bottom of the] pointy tip of the spear”. Thirteen years after I retired, I still shift items to my left hand…just in case I have to salute – which, of course, I never have to do. (I still get saluted when I make the rare trip to a military base, but unlike the Army, I can never salute out of uniform!) Is that patriotism? To some, maybe. For me, it was just something I did. And it isn’t really patriotism. Continue reading

Have a Koch and a smile!

Okay, have two…they’re small. The Koch brothers, when they’re not out buying Representatives, Senators, SCOTUS decisions and Governor wannabees, have financial interest in some things you wouldn’t expect.

I’ve already talked about the link between the Kochs and the Cato Institute, but did you know that they pump money into the “Reason” Foundation?

It’s really unfortunate that the  “Reason” Foundation hijacked the word for the title of their foundation and magazine, because it shows less than none and anyone checking them out will see quickly what I mean (I warn you, more than five minutes on that link and you’ll be screaming for adult conversation). According to Wikipedia, “Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman and The Wall Street Journal editorial board have strongly endorsed the ”  Reason Foundation. Well, duh! Murdoch owns the WSJ, and Friedman was the nutcase selling the trickle down nonsense to Reagan.

Charles Koch likes the Heritage Foundation, and that should be no surprise to anyone. Another non-surprise is Koch’s support of economist James Buchanan, purveyor of something called “Public Choice theory“. Now, it turns out that “public choice” in this context means a citizen knowing that there is only a “tiny probability that his vote will change the result of the elections, while gathering the relevant information necessary for a well-informed voting decision requires substantial time and effort. Therefore, the rational decision for each voter is to be generally ignorant of politics and perhaps even abstain from voting“. Whoa! Citizens United!

The younger brother, David Koch, donates a lot of money to good (as well as Tea Party) causes. He is a big sponsor of the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, cancer research, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Natural History, and more.

And…if you’ve ever watched NOVA, you’ve probably heard that David Koch, the younger, and apparently nicer, of the two Koch-demort brothers is a sponsor. That throws me, but I’m glad for it anyway. Still, because he supports the Museum of Natural History, here’s a smile…