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Here & There…

Some of you may have noticed that AmericanTribune.org has not published since October 6th. Both my back and computer went out. The computer was upgraded easily enough, but my back is still recovering…

Click on image to enlarge...

After a week of intense pain (acute sciatica) I gave up procrastinating and went to the VA emergency room. Meds have given me some relief.

Today, going on 3 weeks later, I still have much the same symptoms and a few more. I’ll have to visit the hospital again.

***

President Obama came to Detroit last week with the visiting president of South Korea, Lee Myung-Bak. They both toured and spoke at the Lake Orion General Motors Assembly Plant. Promises, promises…

The president just got Congress to pass three new “free-trade” agreements.  Anytime both the Democrats and the obstructionist Republicans agree on something, I’d like to see the fine print.

After the speech, Obama returned to DC. Lee came to Detroit with a caravan of vehicles to tour the Hyundai plant, directly across the street from my apartment. Lee used to be the CEO of Hyundai.

My first clue to his impending arrival was noticing the American flag lowered to a shorter pole and the South Korean flag raised to the highest one. Also, for about a week, Asians were everywhere around the plant putting up Korean banners

***

Sunday, on 60 Minutes, Jeffrey Immelt, CEO of General Electric and Obama’s “job czar,” noted at one point in his interview that a plant opening down south drew some 57,000 applicants for 1,700 jobs.

He praised the idea of an American workforce willing to work for roughly half of their former wages…$15-to-$17/hr. A “sign of good times,” he commented, adding “balancing their pay rate in competition with the rest of the world.”

The corporatist view of equity in society: bringing up the wages of the second and third world by exporting US jobs, thus driving down American wages.

I can hear the laughter and clinking champagne glasses in their boardrooms and bedrooms.

GE was one of the major US firms that exported jobs overseas starting some 10 yrs prior to the recent market crashes and has been a leader in fighting unionization by their workers. NAFTA and GATT are simply two of the means to accomplish this.

These two techniques—relocation of US manufacturing and class warfare against unions—along with massive theft at the top, have created the greatest level of poverty since the Great Depression.

***

When Lee’s entourage came to the Hyundai plant (14 Oct.), I was taking photos from my living room window. The AT&T installer also watched with me commented on two snipers on Hyundai’s their fifth-floor roof with their scoped rifles pointed right at us.

With gallows’ humor I said, “they’re probably Detroit PD, I doubt they could hit us at this distance.” He went back to fixing my computer. I continued whistling past the graveyard.

***

The Late Great...

Apparently Muammar Gaddafi was captured and promptly murdered a la Mussolini-style by a frenzied mob of a-salaaming “freedom fighters.” No great loss to a just society, but the main mass murderers still remain at large: Bush, Cheney & Co.

***

Susan Sarandon referred to God’s emissary on earth—the pope—to a reporter as, “The last one, not the Nazi one we have now.” The response from the right and fundamentalist community was like poking a stick into a hornet’s nest.

I checked in with my good friend, Hans Post (the last living survivor of Col. Otto Skorzeny’s SS Kommando).

Hans agreed with Ratzinger’s defense that he would have been conscripted into the Hitler Youth at the age of 14 (1941). At 16, he was drafted into the Wehrmacht (Luftwaffenhelfer) and deserted his unit in 1945 as the end drew near. He was then 18.

He was in an American POW camp for a few months before being released, whence he continued his seminary studies. His father was a police officer during Hitler’s reign. He’s certainly a right-wing conservative, but probably not a Nazi.  In any event, more than mere compulsive membership would be needed to fathom one’s actual intent.

***

Meanwhile, please bear with me. I hope to be up and running soon.

Dr. Publico

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