Category Archive:Interviews

Just like this..:)

 

After meeting Brownback on a field trip, 18-year-old Emma Sullivan tweeted, “Just made mean comments at gov brownback and told him he sucked, in person #heblowsalot.”After Brownbacks office contacted the school about the tweet, Sullivan was called into the principals office and reprimanded.The principal “laid into me about how this was unacceptable and an embarrassment,” she told the Wichita Eagle. “He said I had created this huge controversy and everyone was up in arms about it … and now he had to do damage control.”

via Emma Sullivan, Kansas High School Student, Punished For Sam Brownback Tweet.

If so — if this is really about “the 99%” — then you need to understand a few things.

Some of you already do.  To those, this article is redundant.  To the rest, and to the majority of the people in this nation, it is not.

Last night I appeared on Dylan Ratigan’s show.  You can watch the segment, and should.  I used the word financialization, which a few people emailed me about and asked me to explain.

Thus, this Ticker.

So what is financialization anyway?  It is the process by which something very ordinary (say, a TV set) becomes financed. In doing so there is inherently created the use (and usually the abuse) of leverage.

What is leverage?  Leverage is simply the ability to act as though you have much more of something than you really do.  For example, you can use leverage to pry off the lid on a beer bottle.  Your raw strength is multiplied by the lever (the bottle opener) to lift the cap.

But note that there is no free lunch.  While the opener may multiply the force applied to the cap, the distance the opener moves is proportionally reduced compared to the movement of your hand.

In economics, leverage is the use of debt to pretend to have more economic surplus (that is, purchasing power) than you really have.

Let’s take a TV set.  If you save up the money to buy one, then go into the store and pay for it, you now own a TV set.  There is no leverage involved; you took your economic surplus from working (which you didn’t need for food, energy, shelter and clothing – thus, it’s a true surplus to you) and you expend it on a TV set.  The transaction is simple; once it is completed there are no residual effects.  If you lose your job the next day, you still have the TV set and will forever more until it either breaks, wears out or you dispose of it in some way.

But what if the TV set costs $500 and you only have $100?  Well, you could financialize your acquisition of the TV.  That is, you could borrow $400 by buying the TV on installment payments with a $100 down payment, and now you have a TV.

Or do you?

Actually, the bank (or the store) owns a TV.  You may have custody of a TV set, but you don’t own a TV set. You owe a debt.  You have promised to work tomorrow to cover the expense of the television. You don’t own the TV until you pay it off.

This is all fine and well up until you lose your job.  Now the bank comes after you and wants the TV back, plus whatever deficiency there is on reselling the TV set to cover your debt.  You suddenly discover, much to your chagrin, that you never owned it at all.

This all sounds pretty ordinary, except that the economic effect of financializing that transaction isn’t, in fact, ordinary at all.

See, in economics there is this thing called “supply and demand.”  The more demand there is for something with a given supply, the higher the price tends to be.  In ordinary times a gallon jug of drinking water in a store is a dollar, and from the tap it costs so little we don’t ordinarily put a price on it.  Yet if there was just a hurricane, and there is no fresh water available, what would the price of that same gallon be?  Ah, now we have much demand and very short supply, and as such the price will be quite dear.  Perhaps the price of that water might be several gallons of gasoline (for the seller’s generator, of course.)

via OWS: Want To Turn The Tide? in [Market-Ticker].

Rep. Dingell: “It Takes A Long Time.. To Control The People” in [Market-Ticker].

What am amazing video of roger ebert including the challenges he faces and how folks now sometimes treat him now that he has a disfigurement.  He also details how he is using the Internet to help him communicate.

 

Roger Ebert: Remaking my voice | Video on TED.com.

The first one was an edited version.  The video authors have made the full 2 hour video available as well.  Link to the video below.

 

Judge for Yourself – NPR’s Ron Schiller | James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas.

Saw this over at the American Standard.  Folks wonder why I don’t listen to “Public Radio” or “Public Television”.  It’s taken this for the mainstream to get notified(because if it’s not right in their faces most times they won’t think to look on their own).  I’m not sure we have enough time to wake up America out of it’s public schools induced stupor before we become AmeriKans.

 

YouTube – NPR Muslim Brotherhood Investigation Part I.

You still submit to this pornfest/sexual assault why?

via YouTube – #w00tstock Seattle: Adam Savage says “WTF, TSA?”.

This reminds me of Ryan in so many ways.  I work with him at my mowing job Mike’s mowing.  Ryan is hte owner’s son.  Sometimes he drives me nuts but you simply can’t look past his personality..:)

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Are you still going to fly now?  This WILL CONTINUE UNTIL YOU DON’T SLY AT ALL!!!

The TSA’s invasive new screening measures include officers literally putting their hands down people’s pants if they are wearing baggy clothing in a shocking new elevation of groping procedures that have stoked a nationwide revolt against privacy-busting airport security measures.

via TSA Now Putting Hands Down Fliers’ Pants.

Shatner’s Raw Nerve – On BIO Channel.

I have always liked William Shatner as an actor.  Now I have been watching this series of his and he’s a great interviewer as well.

What an amazingly well written article.  Usually CNN and other outlets these days have to put their spon on things but this is a good case of reporting hte facts and the story.  Kudos to CNN for a great article and I tip my Hat to Kristan and her family for putting mental illness…specifically schizophrenia.

Teen tries to quiet the voices caused by schizophrenia

  • Story Highlights
  • Schizophrenia disrupts Maryland teenager’s life, forces him to leave college
  • Teen’s story echoes experience of Nathaniel Ayers, subject of film, “The Soloist”
  • Family struggles to learn how to best help teenager deal with mental illness
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By Madison Park
CNN

(CNN) — The intrusive voices popped into William “Bill” Garrett’s head. “They’re coming for you,” the voices told the 18-year-old. “Find somewhere to hide; they’re going to get you.”

In the left shows William "Bill" Garrett in high school, and the right is a 2007 photo of the Maryland teenager.

In the left shows William “Bill” Garrett in high school, and the right is a 2007 photo of the Maryland teenager.

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They told the Johns Hopkins University freshman that his father had poisoned the family dog, his sister had injected crystal methamphetamine into his pet lizard and his grandmother had put human body parts into his food.

As schizophrenia took hold, the Maryland teenager became lost within his own mind and had to leave college after winning a full, four-year scholarship.

Garrett’s experience echoes the teenage years of Nathaniel Ayers, a promising string bass player whose musical training at the Juilliard School was cut short by schizophrenia, a brain disorder that blurs a person’s ability to distinguish between reality and delusions.

Ayers became homeless and played Beethoven pieces on a broken violin in the streets of Los Angeles, California. His struggles with schizophrenia and his friendship with a Los Angeles Times columnist inspired the movie “The Soloist,” which releases Friday.

His sister, Jennifer Ayers-Moore, hopes the movie will raise awareness about schizophrenia and has established the Nathaniel Anthony Ayers Foundation for the artistically gifted mentally ill.

“I know there are thousands of Nathaniels, and they deserve a chance, too,” said Ayers-Moore, an Atlanta-based social worker.

Teen interrupted

Schizophrenia is the result of disrupted brain development. Males typically get symptoms during their teens or early 20s, as Ayers and Garrett did.

“It’s a critical time for the brain,” said Dr. Jon McClellan, the medical director of the Child Study and Treatment Center at Seattle Children’s Hospital. “It’s the CEO part of the brain that pays attention, makes decisions and filters. The prefrontal cortex, that’s the last area of the brain to develop. As that area comes online, that’s when the illness presents.”

In high school, Garrett won elected offices in student government and headed the lacrosse and cross country teams. A gifted student, he wanted to study political science and biology at Hopkins.

At home, he cooked family dinners, helped his little sister with homework, and surprised his mother with pancakes on her birthday.

“People likened him to the perfect child before he got sick,” said his mother, Kristan Kanyuch.

In 2007, the unusual behaviors started. He slept a lot. He emptied an entire can of bug spray in his bedroom. When he came home for a weekend from college, he pointed to a blister on his hand that had formed from playing lacrosse.

“Look, I have gangrene,” he said. “My hand is going to rot.” Then he tried to cut off his hand with a paring knife.

His family stopped him and took him to an emergency room for a psych evaluation, but Garrett refused to wait and left.

A week later, Kanyuch got a call from the university. Her son was failing every class. When confronted, Garrett looked at the F’s and calmly replied, “I’m not failing anything.”

In the 1970s, Ayers-Moore saw the symptoms when her family picked her brother up from Juilliard to head home to Cleveland, Ohio, for summer.

“The look in his eye was so different,” she said. “It was like you could see into his soul, he could look into yours. It sort of startled me a little bit. I didn’t know what to say to him. On the way from New York, I pretended I was asleep. I didn’t know what to say.”

Paranoid schizophrenia

About three decades later, Nickole Kanyuch, 15, watched a similar scenario unfold as her brother, Garrett, struggled with paranoid schizophrenia and obsessive compulsive disorder.

“I watched the big brother who I had looked up to all my life fall apart and become someone entirely new,” she said. “The boy who was destined for greatness, who worked long and hard for 12 years to lead a successful life, was destroyed in a mere six months.”

Garrett, who had once organized his 600 books by the Dewey Decimal system, could hardly read two sentences. The voices in his head drowned out the words on the page, he told his mother.

Garrett, who color coordinated the clothes inside his closet, could no longer groom himself or shower. The voices told him the shampoo and soap were poisoned.

Kristan Kanyuch quit her financial planning job to take care of him. Despite taking medicine, Garrett’s health fluctuated. One day he was fine; the next, he threatened to kill the neighbors. Frustrated and facing mounting debt, Kanyuch sought help.

She joined a mental health support group. At one session, she was told to follow simple instructions from a counselor. Meanwhile, 10 people who stood around her talked at once. While the chorus of voices drowned out the instructions, she realized this was how her son lived every day.

That night, Kanyuch hugged her son. “You have to be the most courageous person. You wake up every day,” she told him.

“That’s when he explained to me the reason he sleeps,” Kanyuch said. “He doesn’t hear the voices. He doesn’t hear them telling him he’s fat, stupid, there’s a conspiracy. It’s a break for him to sleep.”

Although no one knows where these voices originated, they could be triggered by wiring problems in the brain, said McClellan, who researches adolescent psychiatry. One theory is schizophrenia causes difficulty distinguishing thoughts from their outside experiences, “so they experience internal thoughts and perceptions as voices,” he said.

Recovery

Garrett has been a subject in two research programs searching for better schizophrenia treatments. His condition fluctuated, and, for months, he was on suicide watch.

Schizophrenia is a difficult disorder to treat, because one medication that soothes one patient can make another psychotic.

“Medication or dosages can’t be matched absolutely with the individual, so there is some of that trial and error,” said Dr. Thomas Bornemann, director of the Carter Center’s Mental Health Program.

Garrett tried many drugs. Some made him drowsy, others volatile and one drug made him gain 75 pounds. Severe side effects often cause patients to stop taking medication.

For now, doctors seem to have found one that helps Garrett. Since March, Garrett has been at a Maryland research center that looks into the relationship between metabolism, tobacco and schizophrenia.

After a violent visit in August, Garrett, 21, had not been home until Easter. During the recent visit, he played basketball, Yahtzee and Wii bowling with his family.

“He was able to carry on a conversation and play card games,” Kanyuch said. “He was interacting.”

At home, surrounded by reminders all his past achievements, Garrett said: “Mom, I was on the top of the world. Now I’m in the gutter.”

His mother disagreed: “Look at it as an opportunity.”

“What?” he said.

“It’s not an opportunity everyone would jump at,” she told Garrett. “But as you rehabilitate, as you grow an insight into your illness, there may be things you deal with forever. But you’ve had significant experiences that you may be able to use to help other people. There’s no place where insight and advocacy [for mental health] is needed more than in politics, which is what you wanted to do.”

A life with schizophrenia won’t be easy, but some with the disorder have graduated from college, earned doctorates and lead enriched lives, she told Garrett.

“He doesn’t understand the courage he has.”

Clarence Thomas: The Justice Nobody Knows – CBS News.

I posted this back in 2007 but i had a databse crash and it turns out the backups were corrupted.  I’m surpised this video still exists on CBS.  I made an audio recording of this video as well because i wanted to make sure this interview endures.  This is a hugely facinating interview and it counters most of the liberal arguments against not only Justice Thomas but most true conservatives as well.