1. I am living in coho now, and I am better served by trying to create the society I want to live in, than in complaining about what I do not want. The challenging part of that is changing perspectives.
2. I want to see single payer healthcare, free higher education, a safety net like that in Finland, where people pay 50% in taxes but have all they want and are happy with it, living without the financial insecurity and in a society where big corporations do not dominate the conversation.
1. We need to start listening to one another. People have become mean-spirited. The differences between us aren’t very much. The government has become dysfunctional, reflecting the people who elected them.
2. There is a lot of information telling everybody how bad things are. But I think you can always find work. Maybe not the job you want, but you can always find work.
3. Personally, I’m rich. I live in Europe 6 months out of the year.
4. Rudeness is our main problem.
1. The natural gas pipe lines being planned, compulsory for all landowners, needs suppressed.
2. No personhood for corporations needs to be instituted.
3. No declaration of embryos as human beings should be the law.
4. Mandatory fluoridation should be eliminated.
5. Pickups unable to fit into designated parking spaces should be ticketed.
6. Right now, what’s irritating me is Christmas music designed to entice people to buy, even before Thanksgiving is here.
1. Income inequality needs addressed, and specifically poverty and homelessness
2. Education is huge. Teachers endure a great deal of blame unfairly. Standardized testing isn’t working well. Every child is different and the money and time used would be best spent on motivating children to learn. Many children’s problems begin at home and that is beyond the control of the kids. We need to build fewer jails and put more money into schools instead. Children need more knowledge about geography and other cultures. Class size needs reduced. My daughter is a school teacher and she has 31 kids, of whom 4 are perennially in the trouble for non-classroom activities. She simply has no time to give those 4 the attention they need.
3.The rights of employees need to be protected.
5. Everyone, and especially children, need access to healthcare.
1.Commercial banking and personal banking need to be separated with a resurrection of Savings and Loans – without the deregulation Reagan introduced, resulting scandals and meltdowns – to be used for home loans.
2. Social Security should never have been, and should not be, applied to the federal deficit. That was innovation of the Democrats as they began to escalate the Vietnam War. Social Security should only be used to invest in guaranteed municipal bonds. That would permit a reduction in both property taxes and Social Security rates.
3. A majority of stocks should be required to be in the hands of employees.
4. Corporate tax breaks should be allowed only for re-investment, including employees and conservation of energy.
5. Leisure, not work, is the basis of civilization and a living wage should be a requirement of doing business. The reduction of payroll costs from 30% to 11% average for payroll costs has been disastrous for employees.
6. The military budget needs drastically cut to levels of other nations, like China.
7. We need stronger child labor laws in agriculture. 12 year old kids can work up to 40 hours a week, and 9 year olds 20 hours a week. I know of some cases where kids are getting fifty cents for picking 50 pounds of onions. For adults, agricultural laborers make $7,000-12,000 a year except in the unionized districts of California. Kids are facing an epidemic of injuries from power equipment. And now processing plants are being put in the same category as agricultural labor. That allows them to have 10 hour days and 50 hour work weeks.
1. Our elections process is the best that money can buy. By necessity our representatives must seek funds from private parties, and those parties expect the representatives to support their concerns.
2. The world is run by the stock market, which is only concerned with the bottom line, a practice which undermines ethical considerations and efficiency. Stocks need to be held over the long run so that cannibalizing a company for short gain stock increases does not occur.
3. The nation’s defense is too much in the hands of corporations, leading to increases in funding for weapons of mass destruction which then beg to be used.
4. Instead of cooperating with others, we have become bullies.
5. The automobile is symptomatic of our waste, with the car’s superficial appearance more important than its efficiency.
6. Corporations have learned how to manipulate human frailty to undermine the well- being of the nation, for their own benefit.
7. The energy corporations are not addressing global warming or pollution.
8. People will not be treated as human beings so long as health care is denied.
1. A limit on the number of years someone can represent constituents needs to be instituted to reduce entrenched partisanship.
2. Restrictions on companies shifting work abroad need to be introduced.
3. The corporate tax system needs revamped so that, above a certain level of profits, corporations pay a flat rate. The current method where the CEO of a profitable firm has a lower tax rate than his or her admin, needs redressed.
4. The quality of education needs to be improved. Teacher tenure needs overhauled. Somehow, we need to create a system where students can afford higher education.
1. Literacy – not only reading but comprehension remains the fundamental problem which needs to be addressed in government.
2. Information, and especially the development of responsible media needs to be nurtured. The disappearance of investigative reporting is to be lamented.
3. There needs to be a limit on the number of home run hitters who can be deliberately walked by a pitcher in a World Series game.
1. Getting people back to work, providing stimulus for jobs, is critical.
2. Disparity in income is getting out of control. The Haves are getting richer at the expense of the Have-Nots and the middle class is getting very thin. The Haves are going to have to learn to be content with less.
3. Education is a critical investment. American schools and universities need to become world class again, on a par with those of China for example. That probably means spending less on sports and more on the sciences and the arts.
1. Everything wrong in the country is related to the lop-sided income inequality that exists.
2. Health care access is too limited. A physician’s wife told me that if the doctors at the clinic accepted medicare, which they won’t, the doctors wouldn’t get paid enough. I’ve never known a poor doctor.