Left Call Radio 07, 08-18-2013 – Minimum Wage, Corporate Profits, Police State, Terrorism, Obamacare Repeal, Hillary Clinton In 2016?

Podcast #07: Minimum wage vs. corporate profits | The growing police state | Republicans and Obamacare repeal | Hillary Clinton in 2016? | Some conservatives lack intellectual curiosity

Special guest this episode: Left Call contributor, Steve Schuler

Segment 1 (00:00:00 — 00:15:15) During the first 15 minutes of Episode 7, we cover minimum wage, corporate profits and appeasing shareholders. How do these wealth people live with themselves? Billionaire Charles Koch has a campaign to abolish the minimum wage. What’s that all about? Not only shouldn’t we raise the minimum wage, we should get rid of it completely. Why not just go back to pre-union days and have child labor, no weekends, minimum 12 hour days. I mean you need to work hard and maybe you can be a billionaire one day too. I mean, of course the super-wealthy earned all that money. Of course the failed CEO who walks away with a golden parachute earned it. That’s meritocracy, right?

Segment 2 (00:15:15 — 00:31:42) Police state much? A marine who served in Iraq says we are building a “domestic army.” Have you been to New York City lately? He does have a point. We do police need this level of weaponry, out on display at all times? What are we responding to? Yes, 9/11 happened. Yes, the Boston Marathon Bombing happened. But these are still rare events. 9/11 was horrific, but you are still significantly more likely to die from a silly accident in your home than from a terrorist attack. But are we crazy for thinking America has overreacted? We don’t want to sound like tinfoil hat wearing nut jobs, but we should all be worried about a growing police state in response to terrorism, which is a tactic that you can never eradicate.

But does this also mean the crazy gun nuts have a point, that the government is becoming tyrannical? That might be extreme, but their reaction is wrong. We aren’t going to have an armed overthrow of the U.S. government. We need to fix our problems through the electoral and political process.

And with all the money we’ve spent in response to terrorism, how much safety have we bought? We could have bought safety and security in the form of health care and better education instead.

And the world is becoming a safer place. But people don’t believe this, because they watch the “news” where if it leads it bleeds. But with crime on the downtrend for decades now, we are ramping up the police state, including New York City’s “Stop and Frisk” program. And of course we need to ban bags at sports stadiums because of the Boston bombing. Same reactionary response that had people discarding shampoo at the airport and taking off their shoes.

Segment 3 (00:31:42 — 00:34:10) Anthony “Carlos Danger” Weiner. There’s no reason he must get out of the race. Let him lose fair and square.

Segment 4 (00:34:10 — 00:41:57) Why Republicans “Must” Repeal Obamacare. No, we aren’t advocating that, but Republicans must repeal it for their own political future. Why else would they keep voting to repeal? It’s up to 40 times now. They know it’s not going anywhere, but hey, they have a lot of freshman members who need a chance to vote for repeal. After all, Republicans aren’t going to get anything else done in congress, so they need something to fundraise on. So expect more repeal votes at least into the 2014 mid-term elections.

Who else but Hillary Clinton in 2016? Poor Joe Biden. But why are we already talking about this? Unfortunately we can’t resist. But can you really see Biden as president, gaffes, toothy grin and all? “Now that’s a politician.” But do we need another Clinton as president? We already had to Bush’s as president. Can we get a little variety in 2016?

But of course, Obama was a long shot for 2008, even after that great 2004 Democratic convention speech. So who knows. Maybe it might not be Hillary Clinton in 2016. But at the end of the day, if it comes down to Hillary Clinton vs. Rand Paul,

Segment 5 (00:41:57 — 00:50:09) What’s the deal Facebook comments and article comments by crazy conservative? And why can’t they spell, or stick to the topic at hand? At some point, you just have to dismiss them as trolls if they can’t have a cordial debate without talking about your mom.

And this is where the false narrative needs to stop. You can find horrible human beings left and right, but when we are talking about public policy, social justice, liberals aren’t concerned with attacking conservatives just because they are conservatives. We want progress. We want social justice. We want equality. We don’t have contempt for conservatives because they are conservatives. And if we go after them, it’s because of what they say, and the damaging policies they support. But for conservatives, it seems they have true disdain for liberals, regardless of the topic. In fact, there doesn’t need to be a topic, some conservatives just hate liberals. Hell, some conservatives seem to hate Americans and even America. They need to turn back the clock, because too many people are messing with their perfect little world.

What’s your motivation? What’s driving you? Is your contempt for fellow Americans driving your politics?

Segment 6 (00:50:09 — 01:03:30) Are Social Security and Medicare going bankrupt? And are they socialist? Never mind they both these programs are successful and popular. Any day now they are going bankrupt according to Republicans.

But these Republicans, these conservatives, they aren’t really conservatives, they are “regressives,” as Robert Reich said. They are radical right-wing ideologues. There really is no national, viable liberal party. You have the Green Party, but it’s really difficult for a third political party to gain prominence in American politics. Democrats are the moderates, and Republicans are the conservatives, although increasingly, the right-wing radicals.

And the Republican and Democratic parties have morphed over the years. Yes, the Democrats were the segregationists half a century ago. But a little thing called “civil rights” changed everything. The Democratic Party embraced civil rights in the 1960s, and in the time since, southern conservatives have switched parties. Those southern white segregationists are now Republicans.

But conservatives live in their bubble, only visiting conservative blogs and watching Fox News, believing everything else is controlled by liberals.

But will truth and facts win out in the end with the internet? You have to wonder, when conservatives react on a gut level. Facts be damned.

We should always wonder why things are the way they are, and question does it still need to be that way? We can sum it up as intellectual curiosity. Which side is more curious about how things work or why things are the way they are?

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