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Alberto Gonzales (Abu Gonzo) Free and Clear

Yesterday the story snuck out with little fanfare that the two year investigation of Alberto Gonzales, former US Attorney General under the Bush Administration, had concluded. The special prosecutor  in the case, Nora Dannehy, did not find anything Gonzo did or didn’t recall doing or saying regarding the firing of former US Attorney David Inglesias to be criminal in nature.  Unprincipled behavior, yes. Criminal, no.

Confused?   Does it feel as though Justice is being denied?

In case you can’t recall the details, or in case you’ve blotted them from your mind intentionally, see more on the flip side.

Safety Nets Becoming Dragnets?: Criminalizing the Poor

Last month I wrote a diary at GOS, Criminalization of the Poor regarding  an increasing trend in many urban areas in arresting homeless people for minor infractions in order to get them off the streets and into the penal system. Barbara Ehrenreich has addressed the same issue in an op-ed in today’s NYT with Is It Now a Crime to Be Poor?

Ehrenreich raises the point that, “I’d be content with a consensus that, if we can’t afford to truly help the poor, neither can we afford to go on tormenting them.” It seems very clear now that even if the nation’s economy is reaching a plateau in certain sectors, it will be a long and painful road for many in finding their own equilibrium or comfort zone with the basics of employment, shelter and life’s other necessities. We as a nation must make sure that we do not become increasingly authoritarian with those who have the least among us. We should avoid turning our safety nets into dragnets.

Goldman Sachs: The Wheel of Fortune & Blood Funnel

Here is the wheel of fortune of our times  

This map represents the connections and relationships of Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Goldman Sachs International, Goldman Sachs Japan, Goldman Sachs Europe Limited, Goldman Sachs Capital Partners, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Goldman Sachs Hedge Fund Strategies LLC, Goldman Sachs Bank USA, Goldman Sachs (Asia) LLC

Below I will post a link to the interactive version where you can click on each of the boxes with a + sign and get more information and see even further connections. I will also post a list of all these many connections. I posted a smaller version of this wheel last night in Badabing’s diary, Matt Taibbi Pulls the Rug Out on Goldman Sachs – AGAIN… and am flushing it out for you all by request. Consider this a reference. I hope others will add to it.

The Economic Crisis is Killing People, Obama: Fund the need for Employment

A new study has been released by Lancet, The public health effect of economic crises and alternative policy responses in Europe: an empirical analysis, written by Dr. David Stuckler PhD et. al., which contends that the current economic crisis is having an adverse effect on public health. The findings from their research show that increased unemployment rates correlate to “significant short term increases in premature deaths from intentional violence.” The study also shows that labor market protection through government programs can reverse this terrible trend.

This scope of this study was the European Union nations. A brief google search didn’t reveal any similar recent studies conducted in the US, though there was an informal study conducted by a Doctor from Johns Hopkins, who reported his findings at a “After Peak Oil” Conference in the spring of this year.

More detail below  

Slipping into America’s Crack: Home is a hotel without a lawyer

I have been feeling lately that the entire country has been hit by a storm,  that people are drowning or are standing on their roofs waving their arms, but that the most other people are ignoring them, their eyes set on some different horizon, looking for golden pots beneath rainbows.

The President and his family this week have been sampling the fine wines of Northern Italy with the worthless G-8, visiting an earthquake stricken town there. He has pontificated with the evil Santa that is the Pope and now having a delightful visit, no doubt, in Ghana.

The mainstream media has been preoccupied with sex, politics and celebrity death.  Huge numbers of television watching Americans have been fueling those Networks’ ad revenue, distracted by these baubles of the macabre.  The blogosphere seems more fragmented than ever, either being enraptured with its own meta,  or having its sights set on foreign revolutions  and  wargames. Quite a number too have been focused on the macroeconomy, noting the incredible hypocrisy and corruption of the big houses on Wall Street.  There are those too who are completely focused on healthcare legislation, which does get closer to the core issue. That issue is that people are hurting badly in this country and are slipping through its cracks.

Find out how many kids are Homeless in your State

On this 233rd birthday weekend many of America’s youngest aren’t doing so well.  One of the effects of the bursting economic bubbles, like so many firework chrysanthemums across the sky, is that children are increasingly being exposed to the worst this nation has to offer. The job losses, foreclosures, increased costs and decreased wages are putting kids out onto the streets.  In my State of Arizona the number of school aged children now homeless has passed 25,000. That is an 18% increase over the  last year. Not having shelter from the intense summer heat of the desert can be quite deadly, quite quickly.  

According to this March 2009 report on national child homelessness, America’s Youngest Outcasts: State Report Card on Child Homelessness Arizona ranks 36th overall with a risk ranking of 45th.  In numbers, this means “of the 933,000 children living in poverty in Arizona, one out of every twenty-five (4% ) are homeless.”

Flip below to find out about how many kids are homeless in your state and what you can do about it.

BPA Revisted: More Craptastic Plastic and Lobbyists

A little over a year ago I posted an essay here and at DK about the potential health hazards of Bisphenol A  (BPA), a chemical commonly found in polycarbonate plastic containers for many consumer products, including drinking vessels like baby bottles.  BPA is also an ingredient in some epoxy compounds. Here is a link to the original piece.  Start with a Clear Silicone Nipple: Craptastic Plastic, BPA and you!. I encourage you to revisit it for a refresher on some of the chemistry, hazards and politics involved if you’ve forgotten about it.  At the very least, this is the Society of Plastics Industry (SPI) code that requires your attention, as it includes the BPA containing plastics.

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

Another Friday, Another Bank Failure

In adding to the angst of the shocking capitalistic disaster otherwise known as “George Bush is our President”, last night the FDIC announced the twelfth bank failure of the year.  This time it was Ameribank, Inc of Norfolk, West Virginia. See failed bank list here.

As noted in this diary posted earlier this morning, Congress: “We have never heard language like this” by pfiore8, and in some of the comments therein, this weekend we will be witnessing the doctrine of the transfer of this nation’s wealth in ways that must be making Milton Friedman and Saint Ronnie grin in mummified, shocking glee.  

This diary will provide some links and source material for those who would like to follow this catastrofinancefuck a bit more closely.

(12:30PM EST – promoted by Nightprowlkitty)

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