Trivia 1H

We now know exactly what is the driving force behind Danny Quayle's urge to run for the office of the president. On Larry King Live he exclaimed, "I've wanted to be president for a long time." Sound's like another great offering showing that this is all that the GOP has to offer as America's future leaders. Brrrrr! (1)

In this insane age of such silly answers to important questions as the "Just Say No" campaign, a rational voice has appeared. Thomas W. Clark of Health and Addictions Research Inc., wrote in the Boston Globe, "It is difficult to justify the staggering costs of the marijuana ban: the person-hours of drug enforcement, the ultimately futile attempts at crop eradication, the overloaded courts, and the draconian jail sentences." While the National Institute on Drug Abuse refuses to admit that there are solid and scientific distinctions between soft and hard drugs, the teenagers of America are right to believe that the dangers of marijuana are far less than the common drugs advertised everywhere; tobacco and alcohol. In fact, he argues, "THC (the active chemical in pot) ranks lower in addictive potential of all commonly used substances, even below caffeine." Sadly, any voice which tries to reopen the debate on the vile and unfair drug laws will be either ignored or, if heard and discussed, will be quickly silenced by the Nazi's owned and operated by the alcohol and tobacco industries (better known as your local Congressman). (2)

Another of good old Danny Quayle's unforgettable remarks occurred during a discussion of the social ills caused by the antiwar sentiments of the 60's generation, "One third of the children today are born into homes without families." DANNY IN 20001! (3)

For you poor folks living in Louisiana, the race to replace the last casualty of the Right in their failed coup de etat, Rep. Robert Livingston, has brought out from under his rock that old Ku Klux Klansman, David Duke. This minister of racial bile and hate has declared himself to be the front runner in this race. I guess Louisiana should prepare itself for a drastic move to the left, huh?!? (4)

Finally finding the perfect name for your new corporation is hard. At least, it sometimes is but long-distant telephone provider KTNT has found an interesting answer to that dilemma. They have registered two names that are virtually guaranteed to bring in the customers. When you call from a pay phone in Florida, you're asked if you wish to use any particular service provider. Answering either, "It Doesn't Matter" or "I Don't Care" will now instantly send you off to KTNT's lines. Pretty cool? Hard to say? Okay, your call. (5)

As any reader of this site knows, I am nearly 100% against any form of deregulation since, nearly always, you and I pay the costs of the insanity of Corporate America going wild without anyone checking up on them. In the early 80's, I warned everyone who would listen that deregulating the trucking industry was a recipe for disaster since independent truckers could seldom afford to keep their trucks in safe operating condition with the lower fees per mile that deregulation was certain to bring. Business was certain to save as much as possible since they were now free to make up their own rules as they went along. Well, my fears have been shown to be well founded. The Washington Post's Alice Reid reports that more than half of the 42,256 trucks inspected by Virginia State Police during 1997 were defective. Even more shocking was the fact that more than 20% were considered so dangerous that they were immediately taken off the road. The figures stand even at the national level where 22% of all trucks are operating in an illegally unsafe condition. Amazingly, drivers are still behind the wheel after convictions for drunk driving and, in one instance, after ramming his truck into a school bus, injuring the driver and 17 children This idiot's record showed suspensions of his license for drunk driving and drug use twice in the last eighteen months. Gentle readers, the next time that a huge eighteen wheeler looms in your rearview mirror, ponder on the thought that you may well be in the vicinity of a large, on-coming bomb. (6)

While I'm blowing my own horn and patting myself on the back for my prescience in predicting the future harm that our government inflicts on us in exchange for the love and money from Corporate America, let's look at one more instance. Ina previous article, I stated quite firmly that the insane trade treaties that Congress and the last two presidents have inflicted on America would, among many other ills, allow foreign businesses to sue in state or federal court to overturn American laws covering worker health and safety, environmental issues and on and on. Well, it appears that the rest of America is finally catching on to what we knew months or years ago. Citing NAFTA and other treaties, the U.S. based Ethyl Corp. sued Canada and was successful in overturning the nation's import ban of MMT, a gasoline additive proven to cause cancer. The U.S. has been successful, as well, in its effort to force other nations to import the hormone-treated beef that our cattle industry passes off as decent, healthy food. The U.S. has been on the receiving (and losing) end of these lawsuits in that we must now allow the importation of tuna tainted with dead dolphins since we can no longer ban tuna not caught in dolphin safe nets. Sadly, though, it is Corporate America who, as usual, is gaining the greatest benefits for these treaties. By moving the industries into Third World nations, they can first set precedence by polluting the local environment, damage the health of their local workers and then sue their countries of origin to allow the same practices in the U.S. or any other nation in which the business holds property. The very best part for the defenseless world's citizens? There is absolutely no laws that force the courts or the government to disclose either the original suit nor the verdict, even should it endanger those same citizen's lives and families.

Gentle readers, we as a nation's people no longer have any say, whatsoever, in the decisions of our government. Between the fact that they are all owned completely and forever by Corporate America and its many subsidiaries and the fact that any law which protects us at home and at work can be quietly repealed, we are completely at the "mercy" of those who could not care any less about or lives or welfare. Only by demanding, loudly and often, that all campaign finance laws be repealed and that all money must come only from taxes or donations given equally to all candidates will our voices be heard. Only by removing the power of the dollar in politics can the average American ever feel a part of the process. (7)

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