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I can’t stress how important facts are – facts derived from vigorous research, and the ability to replicate that research. People can believe what they want to “believe” but the natural world works on science and if we don’t understand it we can not adapt or make rational decisions. Too often our policy makers legislate ideology disregarding practical reality. Abortion is a prime example. Make abortions illegal all you want but people will still need them for a myriad of reasons. Abortions aren’t going away no matter how hard we wish them to so we need to legislate that if education is still not enough then safe medical care is not outlawed.

The environment is another area where science has to be the go to metric. Sea levels are rising and pollution is bad for our health. Once we get beyond the climate cover up by the polluting industries we can address and implement the changes necessary to preserve our billion dollar coastal economies. People come to the shore because the air is clean and you can swim in the water. If you change that our economy declines. Implementing a carbon tax will preserve jobs. Promoting roof top solar will create a multi generational boom in job creation. Moving away from a profit driven healthcare system will lower health care costs and increase productivity.

These are well established facts but money in politics has crippled our ability to govern practically for the macro-economy (another well established fact). We need true patriots willing to be brave and stand up and do the morally correct thing for the Country.

Paul Burke


Politicians collecting tax payer funded pay check, tax payer funded life insurance, tax payer funded health care, tax payer funded gym, tax payer funded cafeteria, tax payer funded office, tax payer funded parking and tax payer funded retirement pension plan for life and for their spouses – have been fucking the tax payer by purposefully crippling the economy to discredit the black guy the majority of the tax payers elected to be President. And they wonder why their approval rating is in the tank. Hey idiots pass a jobs bill for our infrastructure, smart grid and clean tech and maybe your approval rating and electability will improve.

In other words they bite the hand that feeds them and wonder why we think they suck.
Government is not “taking over” healthcare its a common misconception based on repetition.  Government makes the laws under which the private healthcare for profit industry operates.  We The People are the government. So We the People are telling corporations through the laws of the Affordable Healthcare Act that you can not drop our healthcare for per-existing conditions. This is a perfect example of why we have laws, rules and regulations to make a more just, safe and smooth operating society.Corporations operate on profit margin. They are doing their job when they are making the most amount of money possible….not by giving it away or helping sick people, but they are more than happy to take money from healthy people.Insurance; health, auto, home is a nice concept but for it to work everyone has to participate. Going to the emergency room without insurance means those who are uninsured pass exorbitant emergency room fees onto society (the tax payers).  We pick up the tab through higher and higher premiums that have been escalating by 15% year over year as insurance companies pass the cost of the uninsured who get gold plated treatment at emergency rooms onto their paying customers.

The emergency room is not the place to go for a common cold but people go there because they get free healthcare that really isn’t free to the rest of us. The bills get generated, the doctors submit them to the insurance company and those of us in the system see our rates go up.

With everybody getting insurance when someone who previously couldn’t afford healthcare gets sick they’ll go to the extremely less expensive primary care physician of their choice. And maybe even go in for regular check ups and take on preventative healthcare measures that also lower healthcare.

Do you wait for your car to break down by the side of the road or if it makes a funny noise to you run it into you local garage of choice or dealership to get it diagnosed and fixed for less money?

Everyone in some sort of private insurance will drive our collective national healthcare costs down which will increase our GDP and productivity because fewer of us are sick and out of the economy and more of us will have dollars to direct elsewhere that demand will equal more jobs, and a better standard of life for many.

If its a “Government Take Over of Healthcare” how come Aetna, BlueCross Blue Shield, Humana, Kaiser, WellPoint, Cigna, WellCare, Healthnet, Coventry, United Health, Highmark and BCBS are all still in business?  The insurance company’s are all still operating and still making money.

Governemnt didn’t take over healthcare they just made better laws for you and I so we don’t get ripped off by the big boys squeezing us for profits.  Some people under the Obamacare Affordable Healthcare Act (the new set of laws) even got refund checks.  Why?  Because of the 85/15 law a part of Obamacare states that insurance companies have to use 85% of their income actually covering people and only 15% of their take can be distributed to CEO salaries and administrative costs.

At the end of every year checks go out to you and I because Insurance companies can’t know exactly how many of their customers will get sick or hurt.  But at the end of the year the books have to be balanced and people have already gotten checks to offset their healthcare premiums if the Insurance companies pay out was less than 85% of what they took in….amazing huh?

Corporations are not any more evil than government.  Its the people in them who can be unscrupulous or driven by the bosses pressure to come up with gimmicks and schemes to ever increase profits. Insurance companies are not in the business to pay out to hospitals and patients and customers but to make money.  That’s why they are more than happy to insure healthy people and kick to the curb the sick….oopps didn’t read the fine print thanks for your premiums.

Government is our tool to keep them honest.  Being dumped from insurance coverage for pre-existing conditions is illegal now and thank god. Being driven into bankruptcy because your provider says read the fine print you have passed our cap and we’re not obligated to give you any more money but thanks for paying for our lousy insurance all those years…..that’s now illegal and sick people will get to keep their homes instead of booted onto the street.

Hello you have cancer sorry your insurance has run out and now your house has been foreclosed on have fun living in your car dying of cancer….and welcome to America.  Pretty grim right, but the Obamacare Affordable Care Act makes that practice and eventual bankruptcy illegal.

The problem is unless you have actually been sick and tried to get reimbursed from an insurance company you have no idea about the tricks, stall tactics and shenanigans they pull. Claim agents are given demerits if they actually pay a claim and bonuses for denying coverage – all true.

Government is not running the healthcare process but they are our tool for opening up the markets so we can review competing plans and making these decade long horrendous practices illegal.

Go to in a few weeks and see for yourself you might find cheaper insurance.

And remember Corporations are in the business to make money and there is nothing wrong with that as long as they are accountable for their actions and not too slippery.

Government is our tool to make our country better. Some corporate players do not want Government oversight and they contribute a lot of money and pocket politicians to push their agenda because they can and they are driven to make more and more money regardless of the costs they mitigate to society (like ruining a stream by blowing off a mountain top that fed you clean water but now gives you cancer because of the chemicals they use).

Government is the cop on the beat. If some corporate players can corrupt it, weaken it, or bribe it then it becomes easier for them to cheat, steal, get away with wrong doing and pass the cost of their byproducts and actions onto the public.

You and I can not sue GE for polluting the Hudson River we don’t have the financial muscle.  But the Federal Government can call GE to task and go toe to toe with them in Court for decades if they have to for dumping PCB’s in the Hudson, killing the fish, giving children cancer and ruining property value. Why would GE do that (?) simple they are profit driven and anything they can get away with to cut cost they are going to try.  In some cases its cheaper to litigate for decades than to clean up oil and toxic waste spills, dumps and tanks or to be held accountable for ruining businesses and sickening even killing people.

GE is only focused on their bottom line how can they make more money this year so they look for ways to cut corners dumping toxic waste into the river and not being held accountable for the cost of the clean up of their by product is something they will do if they can get away with it.  Big Government is the only tool we have to make them clean up their mess.

In a Country of 350 million people our government has to be big – you don’t want a pip squeak patrolling the streets….and remember vote in every election.

We are the people, we are the government, we have to direct it to spend our tax dollars wisely and maintain and improve the society that we have built for ourselves. We don’t want it to limit our choices, to tell us what to believe or interfere with our pursuit of happiness but we want it to check the sneaky and the greedy wherever they are who would think of nothing in walking off with our retirement funds.

Its complicated with lots of moving parts – easy sound bites don’t get at the truth.

Comparing government and a single family budget is a false comparison – heck of a sound bite but not really apples to apples – think of the government as a circulation system.  We are the least taxed western society but because we are such a huge country with 350 million people (thereabout) we have an enormous tax flow.  DC is the pump that recycles and directs that tax money to our stated priorities through our alleged representatives. Money is like blood circulating through the market system with every transaction large or small that’s why Wall Street spends so much time worrying over consumer spending (70% of our economy is based on it) and George W. Bush told us to go out and shop after 9/11.

But hide that money off shore out of the markets and you starve the circulation of our market system.  Yes taxes are “redistributed” by consensus to do the things that individuals can’t get done by themselves (interstate highway system, space station, aircraft carriers). Since congress makes the laws and controls the budget it settles on congress to direct the spending.

They could spend less on discretionary spending and plow our tax dollars back into research and development, education or build bridges to nowhere in order to win favor in their districts. In an economy of scale our trillion dollar budget sure sounds big to you and me in the middle class in our homes around our table but the revenue the federal government has to work with based on our lowest in the western world taxes is actually a little short on the revenue side due to the necessities and demands on our country as a whole and as big as it is…..wildfires, hurricanes, tornadoes.

One bugaboo always picked on by those that want to privatize and charge fees for what are currently free public services (no overhead, commissions, or profit margins to employees, CEO’s and shareholders) is social security.  If the Congress raised the limit on the amount of income that is subject to the social security contribution (tax) from $100,000.00 to say a million social security would be solvent for multiple generations. Understand that income earned over $100,000.00 isn’t subject to social security tax so as a percentage you and I pay a vastly larger percentage of our income to social security than Bill Gates or the Koch Brothers…..(not fair)

In conclusion big government isn’t “bad” in a big country but rather necessary to coordinate all that goes on in such a large diverse population….also I would point out the government isn’t bad or evil – its just an institution – its the people that potentially populate that institution that are either good or bad.

Having had months to negotiate any kind of budget long before sequestration took place a few in congress are holding up the budget process.  They are causing the economic blood to stop flowing and threatening to kill the economy because their views are in the minority and they were unable to achieve them through the legislative process by having bills go back and forth between the Senate and the House.

You can’t hijack the economy and threaten to stroke it out but you can take your case to the American people and try to win elections.  A certain segment of society hates the president I wasn’t too fond of George Bush but advocating killing the economy to win environmental concessions is literally hostage taking. Or hijacking the economy to get background checks and close the gun show loophole is just as wrong.  The only way to accomplish that is to state your case and run candidates who will then vote for the change that coincides with the will of the people.  We the people that’s how its done.

Congress has taken the economy hostage and is threatening to kill the economy when they had all the time in the world to control their own spending which they are in charge of and campaign to the entire nation on repealing the affordable care act which they did but lost that appeal to the american people. And the american people want our lowest in the western nation taxes to go toward caring for the sick, and curtailing corporate greed.  Perhaps we are a christian nation or at least a caring one?

Our politicians should honor that sentiment and look for other ways to advocate for their pet peeves rather than threatening to sabotage the economy to achieve their minority aims – aims that were not persuasive in the last Presidential election to the majority.

Here’s the Second amendment exactly as it appears in the Bill of Rights.  No punctuation has been added or changed, no words deleted this is what it says exactly including which letters are capitalized and where the period is placed:

“A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”  Adopted December 15, 1791.

Gun advocates routinely disregard and ignore the context of the clause and the first thirteen words?  They are wrong to do so.  Beginning with the capital “A” and ending with the period after the word infringed the clause is to be understood in its entirety.

Arms in the context of the time of 1791 are muskets and pistols and the Founders were talking about the security of a free state by forming “well regulated” militias.

The word regulation is not limited in anyway except to the extent that outlawing the undefined word “arms” is not allowed.  The definition of what those arms are is entirely up to the present day citizens to define and the clause itself gives us the authority to regulate them.

The gun manufacture billionaires making up the Board of the NRA don’t want us to read the whole amendment.  Profit over people.  Until we get our priorities right we are going to continue to fail our children.

Since Richard Nixon and Rodger Ailes republicans have plotted their come back through the decades.  Triumphant with Regan, defiant with Gingrich and the impeachment hypocrites, puppet masters with Bush W’s “Neo” re-branding and swept up again by the Koch (former birch society) Tea Brothers and the oligarchies they represent.But at the end of the day now matter how much money they have, no matter how many media outlets they let Murdoch and Ailes control, no matter how many judicial appointments they get, no matter how sophisticated their marketing or voter suppression efforts are or their redistricting shenanigans and filibustered  policy manipulations –  it’s their naturally arrived at attitudes (greed, theft, hate, paranoia, arrogance, contempt, and bullying) that bring them down generation after generation.

The reason the “she lied about having Native blood” story doesn’t stick with independents, moderates and progressives is that such an accomplished woman wouldn’t have to manipulate an application to get into college.  Now it might stick with less accomplished people who routinely pull shenanigans to gain advantage in even the most minor of situations, to get ahead, slide in on a commission the didn’t really earn, borrow money, never pay it back, con, steal, cheat the wife, back stab for a new position at the office, or run a toll booth. But to the independents and moderates its entirely plausible that her grand parents passed down a story and perfectly natural that she not only believed it but was proud of it and isn’t that just like the rest of us so in fact its kind of charming whether true or not.  Plus there is also a steamy forbidden love angle at the heart of it all and that resonates positively with a lot of romantics out there.  Its actually heart warming and I hope its true and realize its of absolute no significance if grandma was embellishing or repeating an old story she heard and of no significance if a twenty something Elizabeth Warren was proud of that story.

At the end of the day serious people concerned about serious policy don’t believe it makes a bit of difference as her overall character is impeccable, her resume is outstanding, her track record is one of accomplishment, and that she is a voice standing up to the most powerful in Congress the well funded Wall Streeters.

Most people who understand the advance calculations of derivatives and the wall street computerized algorithms and models are usually offered a ton of money to come work for wall street. If regulators can understand the advance calculus that Wall Street uses to make money when bubbles burst and the rest of us loose they are offered big, big money to come work for Wall Street instead of the significantly lower paid positions at the SEC. The same offers were most likely made to Mrs. Warren but apparently she refused to sell out. That’s why Wall street dumped so much money Scott Browns way because he’ll do or say anything for money.  Are people still falling for that cream puff model turned regular guy in a truck motif?

In any event the smear campaign against her will continue as long as she is a threat to those so lavishly working the system for their own personal gain. In fact the more they smear the better job the rest of us know she is doing.

There is a Country to run and Wall Street is out numbered by Main Street in more ways than one. Its long past due to balance the playing field. With Corporations only contributing 9% to the revenue stream of the Federal Government and you and I and main street providing the rest its time for Corporate America to ante up and act like they are a part of this Country not above it because they are multi trans nationals who pay their CEO’s gobs of money instead of paying their taxes.  Its actually pretty shameful on its face then add on top they came crying to the rest of us for the bailouts and its just plain criminal.

For the record her great great great grandmother is Cherokee. O.C. Sarah Smith and listed on an electronic transcript of a 1894 marriage application as Cherokee.  I for one hope some of the more honorable Native American sensibilities inform her thinking.

The Problem:
First and foremost the wealthy two percent include a lot of Congressmen so right there we have a conflict of interest.  The unpatriotic among them do not want to see their own taxes go up.  The fix is simple and has been simple but politicians not wanting the so-called other side to look good have blocked legislation and abused the filibuster to stall the economy.  If the economy is slow or just barely growing during an election cycle they can run for election on the issue that the economy is doing meh.  Congress sees itself as two separate parties vying for power and control and those we have elected (some not all) put themselves first over the country and the people (regardless of what they say its how they act).  That coupled with two unfunded wars, medicare part D which also was unfunded and the Bush tax breaks make up the majority of the deficit.

The Solution:
End our two unfunded wars, close a few bases around the world (we have hundreds) fully implement ObamaCare, leave 98% of the tax break in place, trim back outdated and unwanted defense department contracts (unwanted by all except the beltway bandit contractors) – close a few tax loopholes that move money out of the national economy to the Caymans and Bermuda including moving manufacturing overseas to China and India, cancel subsidies to big oil, get rid of the cap on social security, and reinvest all those savings into infrastructure repair, energy upgrade, education…and never ever ever deregulate Wall Street again = Problem solved.

Mitt Romney likes to talk a lot about “love of country” with his best choir boy face so lets add up this “love” that Willard claims to have:

“Love of Country” – I guess that means being a tax dodger is loving your Country, telling people in a disaster area you are on your own, is love of Country, firing tax payers from profitable companies to make more money with slave labor overseas…vulture capitalism that’s gotta be love for your Country, slashing medicaid by 30%, slashing education investment, ending healthcare for all, that’s real love for your Country, firing Big Bird, that’s a lot of love for your Country, investing in short sales betting on companies to go broke, that’s a lot of love for your Country, getting rid of the Consumer Protection Agency, denying equal pay for women, actively denying an equal vote for minorities, that’s real love for your Country, tying your dog to the roof of your car and driving 650 miles into the cold north at 70 miles an hour well that’s just a lot of love.

Sell it somewhere else “Willard” We The People aren’t buying it.

The Economic Recovery is Real – Bloomberg Financial Radio

The question the republi”cons” want to ask is are you better off – well under Clinton/Gore my 401k was growing, under Bush/Cheney my 401k was decimated beyond belief, under Obama/Biden my 401k is growing again.  I recaptured my losses and am now in the plus side.  So yes.  Historically the markets have always done better under democratic leadership.  The republi”cons” want to starve the government of cash and hoard that money off shore in their private accounts thus starving the Country of cash.  Their plan is for themselves – not for the Country and not for you and me!

Its simple really unemployment is down, GDP is up, home construction is up, building permits in the pipeline are up, durable good orders are up, retail sales are up, consumer confidence is up and “the recovery is real” – Bloomberg Financial Radio (very much a republican media outlet)

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Paul Burke is some fantastic, talented writer. Journey Home is an eye-opener. It is down to earth and humanly raw! I highly recommend it as a must read!!" -- Knowledge Tree Bookstore
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When I first started reading Journey Home I couldn’t put it down! Each person and situation became vivid in my mind. I could feel the book. It became one with me and the sounds ... here on Big River. The unexpected twists and turns, continued to peak my interest, and the first night I read till I could see no more. Then, as I awoke I read till I was done. A book of this quality is an Amazing Gift for all to read and Understand!!!! -- Dusty



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