Terrorism on American Soil

by Walter Brasch   During this past week a three-year-old boy in Rock Hill, S.C., killed himself when he was playing with a loaded gun in his house. He wasn’t the only one in Rock Hill to die from a gunshot. In July, a man killed himself after shooting his wife, her son and the son’s girlfriend. The following month, someone killed a 30-year-old woman; someone else that same week killed a 27-year-old man. Rock Hill, a city of about 66,000 is not unique. About 2,700 children are killed every year from gunshot violence; about 60 percent of them are homicides, the rest are suicides or unintentional deaths, such as that of the three-year-old. Every year, another 15,000 youth are … Continue reading

The Fracking Crisis: A Manufacturer’s Perspective

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is by Mark Lichty, a business owner and film producer.] I am asking business owners and executives  in Pennsylvania to join me in petitioning Gov. Wolf to put a moratorium on fracking. Until I became involved with the film, Groundswell Rising, I had no issue with fracking.  Ads told me it was safe.  The hypnotizing blue flame and minimal emissions,  convinced me to accept the platitudes of the industry.  Only when I began the research did I understand that there were dire environmental and health consequences. The Pennsylvania  Supreme Court came to the same conclusion when  the chief justice  stated, “Fracking is detrimental to the health and the environment.” The Secretary of Health in New York … Continue reading

The Republicans’ Rhetoric of Hate and Fear

    by Walter Brasch   Fear, laced with paranoia, is driving the American response against allowing Syrian refugees into the United States. President Obama has said he would accept 10,000 refugees, all of them subjected to intense scrutiny before being admitted to the country. France, with a population about one-fifth that of the United States, despite the worst attack on its soil since World War II, will accept 30,000 refugees. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) told the Senate, “We are not a nation that delivers children back into the hands of ISIS because some politician doesn’t like their religion.” Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.), a Jew, said the nation should “not allow ourselves to be divided and succumb to Islamophobia,” and … Continue reading

President Obama Rejects The Keystone XL Pipeline Deal on Secretary of State’s Determination

The Keystone XL pipeline deal is no more! This is a huge environmental win for America… I applaud Secretary of State John Kerry and President Obama for rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline deal. Via the Department of State, Secretary of State Kerry’s Keystone XL Pipeline Permit Determination: John Kerry Secretary of State Washington, DC November 6, 2015 After a thorough review of the record, including extensive analysis conducted by the State Department, I have determined that the national interest of the United States would be best served by denying TransCanada a presidential permit for the Keystone XL pipeline. President Obama agrees with this determination and the eight federal agencies consulted under Executive Order 13337 have accepted it. Executive Order 13337 delegates to … Continue reading

Katrina: A 10-Year Review

by Walter Brasch This week is the 10th anniversary of the destruction of the southeastern gulf coast by Hurricane Katrina. More than 1,800 people died. There is no estimate for the number of pets and wildlife. Damage was estimated at more than $100 billion. About 80 percent of New Orleans was flooded. In Mississippi, the water surge flooded as much as 10 miles from the beaches. The Category 3 storm should not have caused that much damage, but it exposed poorly-designed levees that should have protected New Orleans. Sanctimonious critics, many of them conservative politicians, claimed that if the residents had evacuated New Orleans like they were ordered, the death toll and suffering would have been significantly less. What they … Continue reading

Hillary Lays Out Vision for Economy

In her first major policy speech today since announcing her candidacy for president, Hillary Clinton put higher wages for low-income workers at the heart of her economic policy outline saying “I believe we have to build a growth-and-fairness economy.” Hillary also spoke out about the rise in corporate profits, taking a jab at big industry, as she said, “Corporate profits are at near-record highs and Americans are working as hard as ever but paychecks have barely budged in real terms.” Clinton also took on Wall Street today in her speech saying, “Too many of our major financial institutions are still too complex and too risky and the problems are not limited to the big banks that get all the headlines.” Clinton warned … Continue reading

A Gig Isn’t A Job

The middle class is eroding. A real full-time job is a thing of the past for many working Americans. The part-time, freelance gig has replaced the full-time job and that has created shrinkage in the middle-class and income insecurity has become the norm for too many people. While some people might like having a little more free time, the average worker depending on freelance and gig type work has a hard time making ends meet on a regular basis. For many of these people they don’t know when or if they will find a gig. Many people feel that the economic crisis we faced a few years ago simply has not been addressed in a way that can facilitate real change … Continue reading