Rick Strahl's Weblog  

Wind, waves, code and everything in between...
.NET • C# • Markdown • JavaScript • Angular
Contact   •   Articles   •   Products   •   Support   •   Advertise
Sponsored by:
Markdown Monster - The Markdown Editor for Windows

American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

On this page:


This is a rant of a lot of related thoughts I’ve been kicking around lately. It’s a rant and came out just in one flow of consciousness. I feel better now. You may not, after reading this. This is personal to me and some of you might find these thoughts offensive. If personal opinion and political views are not your thing you should probably skip this entry.


I’m just wholly fed up with the business practices of big business here in the US of (Corporate) America. It’s been gradually getting worse and worse, but there’s not a shred of respect from my end left for any large corporation.


It seems to me that big business is no longer playing by any sort of moral or ethical rule. The rule has basically become to screw your customers with the details and bait and switch advertising – which BTW seems is no longer considered an illegal tactic.


Where to start. I got my Credit Card Bill today. I’ve been traveling a lot recently and otherwise pretty busy so last month I missed my payment to pay off the bill. Ok, so I got stuck with a hefty finance charge, and a  $39.00 late charge. Double take. $39.00? Are you fucking kidding me?


Yeah sure it says so in the fine print somewhere – not in the document I signed originally but in one of the 20 addendums the company has sent since the bank – Chase, has gone through 3 ownership transitions and ‘consolidations’. I understand banks have to make money too, but this one forgotten bill cost me well over $100. Call me crazy, but think about it: $39.00 is an outrageous amount of money for missing a payment fee. That’s not counting the finance charge. It wasn’t too long ago that I was thinking $15 was a big deal to get dinged if you made a payment too late. That’s some inflation in 3 years. The finance charge is also pretty outrageous. Standard – sure, but think about: If you put money into your bank (or Chase for that matter), you get what .8% interest right now, right? The same bank will loan you money at 7 or 8% if you’re lucky for a small business or personal loan. For a credit card the percentage is more like 12% or as high as 25% for some cards I’ve seen. Some margin - How’s that for raping customers? Accept a card at your own risk, right?


I was traveling last month in Canada for the DevTeach conference I was speaking at. While I was traveling I had my phone with me and used it very lightly. I had called before I left to find out what it would cost to use the phone which was something like $.25 on top of minutes used on my plan. I also needed to use MMode (AT&T) for my SmartPhone session to acces the internet. I used this to demo a sample application, on a real phone to various people. I ended up with a $25 bill for a total of like 3 minutes of online time. Incidentally the operator I called couldn’t conveniently give me exact rate information when I called before I left… now I can see why.


The whole telephone business is hell. All those companies nickel and dime you death with service charges that are nothing but fluff. Of course you can’t get rid of ‘network access’ even if you have a phone that isn’t ever dialing out. The rates go up by incredible percentages each year. I wrote about this a while back and got out of landlines and switched to Voice IP and Vonage. I have this queasy feeling that this won’t last – the big phone companies like AT&T putting the squeeze on getting VOIP companies regulated, while at the same time lobbying for less regulation on their own practices.


Cell phone companies are even worse though. Nobody can make sense of the plans these companies put together. Try switching your service and take your phone with you. It should be pretty easy – phones can be flashed in a few minutes. But no, you HAVE TO buy a new phone to switch unless you want to take a chance with an ‘unlocked’ phone. Unlocked right – the phone companies are the ones locking the phone in the first place just to lock you into their service.


So we all end up with plans that are either too much service where we way overpay for what we actually use or we have a plan that’s too little and we get screwed on the ridiculous overage charges. All the while these guys advertise their nice and low rates. Oh yeah, that rate works only if you call down the block – you want to call across the country, oh that’ll be THIS much. Right – Bait and switch.


Yesterday I got a notice from my insurance company. They raised my rates by $50 without notifying me. There was a change in policy that was automatically applied by Pogressive. A few weeks later I got this notice that my account is overdue and the policy is about to get cancelled. So I call up to see what’s going on. I have a funky insurance arrangement because I have two cars, one in Hawaii and one here in Oregon and I keep them both active because it ends up being cheaper than killing the insurance and ‘restarting’ it. That right there’s a joke. I loose my existing customer insurance rating by not insuring the car in the state, that I’m not driving in for a few months - SCAM.  Anyway, so I call and try to find out why my rate went up spontaneously without anything changing or my approval. It turns out there was a problem with Oregon requiring uninsured motorist coverage.  Ha, I wonder who was paid off in the Oregon legislature by the Insurance companies to make a it a requirement that I have uninsured motorist coverage. I don’t have comprehensive coverage on my beat up cars, but I have to pay $100 (for the year) of uninsured motorist coverage? It’s nearly a quarter of the full premium. The real clincher is that Progressive just changed this and sent out a bill. No call, not explanation. The letter has no info on what’s changed. Just pay. And you know what, most people probably don’t take another look at the bill. These fuckers are counting on you to just pay.


So Progressive added the charge without notification, but not only did they add the charge, but they charged the maximum possible amount for both cars when only one of them was required to have the extra insurance. Again, they are squeezing maximum advantage out of this ‘opportunity’. Call me weird, but this is unethical and very, very scary…


The alternative is almost worse. I’ve been on the phone for hours trying to get through to Customer Service. They faxed something to sign, I fax it back. They promised to call back to make arrangements. Of course nobody calls back. I call back and end up on hold for another 20 minutes. If I were a new customer and called to sign up for new coverage you know I wouldn’t be waiting for 2 minutes to be put through to an operator.


And so the list goes on and on. This is trivial shit mostly, but it happens over and over again. Phone company. Dell for my computer. The cable company. Often I feel like just letting it go. It’s not worth getting worked up over this, but it just eats at me. Not for actually paying a fine, but the fact that these companies are betting on you being too lazy to deal with their fuck-ups or your oversight or their outright scamming. And by letting it go you are actually encouraging to keep doing this. By calling back it’s costing them the cost to undo the change plus the time you’re holding up the operator plus the 800 call… but of course all that means is your rates (and everybody else’s) will be going up.


These big companies are out to basically screw you and me. Any way they can make a buck. They know you have nowhere else to go, because the competition is no better. You can switch to the competitor (or wholly owned subsidiary) but you’re still screwed.


The real sad part is that these companies also think they have no choice. To stay competitive they have to rape and pillage with the rest of them or be left behind. A precedent has been set.


And alternatives are going away. Everything is being gobbled up by big chains, franchises. On main street we can look forward to more of Walmart syndrome come to smaller and smaller business, where the big guys squeeze everybody for the coporate bottom line while customers get screwed, employees laid off in masses leaving only those willing to work for 10 cents over minimum wage, while corporate CEOs are getting multi million dollar salaries while running their companies into the ground, loosing value from the common investor, and the companies are getting a corporate handouts in tax breaks and permission to offshore money to avoid paying taxed altogether. That’s fair play alright…


And meanwhile the SEC and the government looks the other way when there are corporate offenses in tax accounting practices. If a company gets caught misrepresenting its accounting information to avoid paying taxes and boost their bottom line, they get a slap on the wrist fine that’s just a ‘cost of business’ by now. It’s cheaper to get caught than actually playing by the rules that you and me have to live by. Cheating on your taxes likely means a hefty fine or even jail… either way it’ll hurt. Corporate cheating (‘creative accounting’) is so commonplace it’s unlikely any large company would get off clean from a real IRS audit.


While corporate is taking over Smalltown USA, the Mom and Pop shops are gone – most of the character of business is gone and you’re stuck with people in plastic vests being fake-polite to you. We live in pre-fab towns, ringed by strip malls every two blocks where you can get all the same shit made in China, Malaysia and Vietnam by slave labor and that breaks down after a few years – built in obsolescence.


All this stuff is not made here – look around your home and honestly count the things that are made in the USA. How about your car? If you’re like most very little is. I really would like to know where Americans of the future are going to work when everything has been offshored for profit and tax shelters, and everbody has been squeezed out into minimum wage jobs?  You have two kinds of jobs and workers then. The service sector working for minimum wage, and the mythical ‘information worker’ is what – a paper pusher? 


A lot of us are software develpoers, what are we really doing? We’re supporting all the paper pushers. Who in turn push around other people who also push paper around. Is the end result of all this paper pushing actually something real???


There’s so little that is still made or produced in this country. What is it exactly that America is good any longer? It used to be America was a leader in all sorts of areas. Nowadays where are we a leader? Technology? Barely, and even then most of the manufacturing is not done here. Engineering – still some of that, but we’re loosing out here as well. Let's see we make good bombs and fighter airplanes I hear and we can blow up the whole fucking world. Woo  hoo. Oh and Hollywood still makes shitty, predictable movies that unfortunately are popular…


Yes, yes I know it’s not all that bleak – there are still many small companies out there, creating quality products, showing innovation and running their businesses ethically as much as possible. It actually happens. Small companies often have to have a conscience because they can’t spread the risk like huge companies, don’t have the political pull to drop a few million on the right senator to swing a vote in Congress or the local governement. But in big business my generalization is more true than not.


I’ve lived in this country for over 20 years now, and it’s gotten depressing in the last 5 years (maybe longer). The standard of living is falling, most people except the most morose and a few brilliant people, don’t have a rosy outlook for the future. Long gone is the assumed prospect that kids will do better than their parents. With an economy that has nowhere to grow, a stalemate is about as good as most can expect, and even that may be overly optimistic.


As a country this nation has squandered its resources, sold off its competitive advantage to companies who rather fire everybody to outsource their operations at pennies on the dollar and end up saving little to nothing in the process because it’s so costly to clean up the mess it causes. You have unsatisfied customers, high expenses and money flowing out of the country. Yet even the patriotic conservatives have no problem with tactics like this – after all money is the most important thing, even more important that ideology. Never mind that this is the worst kind of un-patriotic that I can think of.


In the meantime any thought to the future is thrown out the window. Nothing’s done to improve declining education standards, churning out morons from schools and colleges and calling the disaster ‘grading on a curve’ or ‘average’.  Instead schools are turned into businesses that sell sports and overcrowded classrooms that can’t effectively teach anybody anything but how to be average. Oh you can get an education – if you’re lucky and you ‘work the system’, or you have golden spoon and mommy and daddy are well enough off to sent the kids to private school at costs that make the mind reel.


A whopping 13% of this country’s population lives under or very near the poverty line. Think about that for a minute. That’s roughly 1 in 7 people. And that’s with a poverty guideline value that’s been adjusted downward – as of 2004 the poverty line was $9,310 (single person) so the numbers don’t look as bad as they would with a realistic number that’s more like twice that in most areas of the country. Can you even imagine living on $775 a month WITHOUT taxes applied? In the various places I live you can’t even get the shittiest of apartment’s rent paid for that. 1 in 7 lives that way, day to day, one step away from living on the street. Ah, but they’re all slackers anyway…


I’m not in favor of big government either, but this country has very little social fabric left. There’s practically no social safety net whatsoever. It’ll be really interesting to see what happens when Social Security finally does run out and you have a large chunk of the population with absolutely nothing after having paid into the fund for all of their working lives…


It’s all very depressing. Speaking of corporate corruption, I’ve been reading Pigs at the Trough – which is a truly depressing view of how corporate America is fleecing the public and even their own stockholders with excess and crooked business practices. This sort of unscrupulous behavior, is something that seems to reflect not only in business, but government and even in society and people’s attitudes at large. This isn’t to  say that everything and everybody is bad, but I think there’s been a serious shift in public tolerance (or maybe it’s just public ignorance) that lets this sort of shit go on without major public outcry and as a result we're all affected in our daily life.




I’m sure this article will offend some true-blue Americans, as un-American and blasphemous. That’s Ok, call me what you want. I’ve lived in this country for 23 years now and this country has been good to me. I’ve paid my dues, put my tax money in and have been supportive for most of the time I have been here. Even though I’m not an American citizen I consider this country my home. I would like to see nothing more than for sanity to return in this country, which has obviously gone wayward of its own ideals.



As a side note, this situation has had me so disgusted I have seriously considered leaving. So much so that when I had applied for citizenship about 3 years ago, and that when I finally got the opportunity for my interview 2 years later, I declined it. After being screwed around by the INS for more than 2 years because of 9/11 related issues (nothing related to me – just the system practically died and citizenship applications went from 3 month periods to apparently 2+ years) and the continuing shift to irresponsible politics I decided I can’t in good conscience go to an interview and basically lie.


It’s funny, because I never thought about national pride before having always been a traveling soul who doesn’t have deep roots anywhere. I certainly don’t consider myself any more German than American or vice versa. National pride is nothing but silliness anyway. But it was still a tough decision to make. To be truthful, I would not want to live anywhere else. But at this time it just doesn’t feel right for me to accept American Citizenship when I feel mostly antagonism against the system.


The Voices of Reason


Michael Sanford
July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Wow... I tend to agree with a lot of what your saying here, especially as it relates to corporate america. I am a proud and patriotic american, but I believe that government is more stupid than underhanded. There are very few politicians who actually want to screw americans. Most are just too stupid to see what is happening.

Rick -- I know a rant like this makes you feel better, but realize that any moron can scream and yell about how badly this sucks. Do something really impressive and offer up solutions. My question to you: What are you doing to make America a better place???

July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

I think many of us are as fed up as you (at least in some areas). I think the lack of morals and ethics in this country (and the world) is the root of many of these problems. I would like to see a productive discussion of what we can do (average Joes) to bring about positive change.

Cathy Pountney
July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Rick -- I *completely* understand the rant!! I've been dealing with my son's medical problems for over a year now and it's been completely frustrating. Dealing with the insurance company is a joke -- half the time they decline to pay a claim and hope I'll just give up and pay it. I refuse to get walked all over and I keep pushing and making calls and writing letters and evenually the bills get paid. It's bullshit that I have to put so much effort into getting other people to do their damn job!!

The doctors have been another source of frustration. Just because I am divorced .. the doctors ASSUME that my son's problems are psychological and not medical. They run some tests and when they come back okay, they claim "psychological". I have taken him to a psychologist for the past year and the shrink keeps telling us there is nothing psychological wrong with him -- yet the medical doctors refuse to accept that. It feels like a ping-pong match between the doctors and the shrink.

Luckily .... two weeks ago the doctors FINALLY admitted that my son's problems are medical. They believe he has a rare disease called Porphyria. Ironically, *** I *** have been telling them for over a year now that I think he has Porphyria and they kept blowing me off with statements like, "That's so rare, that I'm sure that's not it." Um ... doc ... "RARE" does not mean "Non-existent".

I've been completely fed up with the medical and insurance industry in this country. The USA is great --- but there is definately room for improvement!!!!

Hank Fay
July 08, 2005

# Ranting is The Essence of American

A Rant is as American as you can get. &lt;s&gt; If you've come in contact with the writings of the founders of the country, they make current-day political rantings look very tame. As much as anything, the Right to Rant was the driving reason for founding the country.

So good for you! You've become a virtual American. &gt;g&lt;

And the irresponsibility of government, combined with the immorality and rapacity of business, is depressing. Even more depressing to me is the ascendancy of the Culture of Greed capitalized on, or capitulated to, by our current crop of politicians, on both sides of the aisle.

But none of it is at all new, given a reading of history. It's a work in progress, with ebbs and flows. And making it uncomfortable for the perps is part of the solution, so go on Ranting!

July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Rick, I agree with you about these lousy companies. Dell tech support! Ha! My health insurance company are so incompetent it makes me throw up.

But when you say...

>>>I’ve lived in this country for over 20 years now, and it’s gotten depressing in the last 5 years (maybe longer). <<<

I think it's just we are getting older, and this stuff bothers us more the older we get.

Bob Archer
July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Vote Libertairan. Stop throwing your Votes away on the same old, same old. Democrats and Repulicans are the same, there is no difference. They all support the Patriot Act that has done nothing to protect us from terrorism as it claims to do. They are for big government or bigger government.

Truth is wether it has to do with getting rapped by big government or big industry most American's, or people living in this country are like frogs in the slowly heating water. Except, we know the water is heating up and we still don't jump out.

We all want our cell phones, and our broad band, and our HDTV, and we want it NOW. Very few Americans automatically save. Most spend their future using credit cards. We have to have it NOW. If we really cared about cell phone bills or insurance costs we could do something about it, but it takes ALL of us. Which is why it will never happen.

This country needs another revolution. I don't mean a coup with guns and violence, I mean an application of the Consitituion, of free speech. In each election the incumbent should ALWAYS loose unless you are better of than you were when he/she was voted into office. Let send a signal that the status quo is not acceptable.

There are ways to fix this country, and the enconomy. I feel sadly that they will never happen.

July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Oh and one other thing. I'm a Brit permanent resident of the USA. For all America's problems and flaws, it's a great country, I would never live anywhere else.

If you think the government's bad here, try Europe, which is basically peasants being ruled by an unaccountable socialist elite based in Brussels.

At least in America we have Ron Paul: http://www.ronpaul.org/

Victor Campos
July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Unfortunately this is the best country in the world as far as opportunity is concerned. You know what they say, "The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence." If you go somewhere else you might just realize that the U.S. had it's advantages over other countries.

I don't disagree with you but change takes time. We've gone through some good and we're definately going through some bad. Hang in there the good will come.

Don't give up becoming a citizen because of what's going on right now. Think back at the reason why you wanted to become a citizen in the first place and consider it.

Colin Nicholls
July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Rick, Amen brother. If Cathy hadn't brought up the medical system I would have.

Michael asks, "What are you doing to make America a better place???"

I'll answer this on Rick's behalf: Sticking around.

July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Running a small manufacturing company that sells primary to fortune 100 and the top 3 customers show up on the fortune 12. It sucks royally, try getting squeezed on both sides Vendors and Customers. average pay time after service and product delivery is 60 days now and those customers who pay on take anywhere between 0.5 to 2% off the invoice.

The solution to the problem is rolling back of allot of laws the government has past in the last 40 years. HIPPA, removing the Tax System and going to Flat tax. remove social security (great on paper but terrible in practice) welfare, medicare, medicaid. Term Limits on political office.

The US government employed 2,733,869 in 2004 http://ftp2.census.gov/govs/apes/04fedfun.txt

the local governments employ 15,788,784

why does the US governments need 18.5 million employees. thats 6% of the nations population.

Private entities have their problems but compared to the US Governments, plus you can choose to opt out of the those private services. But can we opt out of taxes???

July 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Rick - no need for the disclaimer markup. As an America consumer, it is your G*d-give right to rant (only sissy's 'bitch') It's not just big business and government, though. Have you tried going to your local sleaze burger joint lately? If I can wring a modicum of customer servie (cold fries and soggy burgers are just expected now) from any of those punks, I'm high for week. But fear not. The large, rent-seeking welfar-whores of big business screwing their base customers and our government intruding into every aspect of every decision we make, will not win-out over the American spirit to get quality for their hard-earned bucks and to bascially be left alone. One day and soon, enought will be enough, and critical mass will set in and the core will melt. The cooling safety mechinism will fail and there will be an exlposion of entraprenuerial talent fed-up with big companies and they will over run them. The bled-dry class will scream Peter Finch style that they're fed up and that they can't take it anymore. They call this a mild revolution, and it will be us back to the days of people actually glad to have jobs, business that actually fall over eachother to get your business and cute teenage girls asking you smiling if you need a straw with the chocolate shake they over-filled for you.

Jeff Pace
July 10, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves


This is why I am seriously considering bailing out to Costa Rica. Great beach front property, not to mention the surfing. The people are great and you can still do business with a "hand-shake" without worrying about the type of corruption which exists in the neighboring countries. No capital gains tax.

Oh yeah, watch out for CitiBank Visa. These sneaky bastards will make a one-time change on the Due Date (e.g. from 06/31 to 06/27) and then switch it back so you get nailed with the penalties.

Juan Calcagno
July 11, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

I couldn't agree with you more. I could provide almost the same examples you've exposed.

It's funny to see some people's puerile, conformist comments, I wonder how they feel when they run into the kind of situations you and others described.

The wide spread of the freedom ideals that the USA always enjoyed, become relative when individuals Property Rights are affected every day.

I think you are very courageous at holding off American citizenship, and a USA born citizen should be proud of an attitude like yours, meaning that you are taking their country citizenship seriously, not just as a conduit that will let you remain in this country.

One thing is sure, this system needs more people shutting up and eating whatever they are fed with, complaining the less possible, in order to keep screwing us all up.

Randy Clark
July 13, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves


More power to you but it's not a new problem. I just re-watched the movie Network, from 1976, last weekend and corp. greed and ethics is one of it's underlying themes.

Tim Farley
July 13, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Amen, brother! Great rant.

Matthew G Clark
August 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Right on Rick! It's funny how you nutshelled some of the same compound frustrations as I've been mulling over - especially over the past few months. I too am becoming weary at the dilution of our free time and income and am considering alternative lifestyles that might take me back to a simpler time and ways - without totally giving up modern amenities. As for possible solutions, it turns out eco-villages are on the rise in the US and around the world - probably for this exact reason. People that recognize the inevitable breakdown in US society are getting out sooner than later. I'm sure you know about eco-villages in Hawaii that have been around. It ain't easy to be truly self-sufficient, but it can be done, and what better place to try than Hawaii or similar coastal paradise. Except for the fact that many that exist are designed by vegans, there is always room for tweaking, at least include fish. One I know of in Hilo (http://www.g0v.org/">http://www.g0v.org/) has a pretty cool layout of rules for their village - yet they are about real democracy - as are most of them. In my mind the lean towards self sufficient communities maybe one of the few alternatives to the corporate takeover of everything wholesome and the ever dwindling value of our work. I also found an eco-village in Costa Rica where you basically work 4 hours a day for food and shelter, and it's a cool place near the beach with a jungle paradise backdrop.

Hawaiian eco-village

Costa Rican eco-village

Mother lode of eco-villages all over the world!

Matthew G Clark
August 08, 2005

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

As for ranting, it's amazing how so many conveniences have emerged in the last 7-8 years that allow us more free time- especially because of the Internet - thanks in part to alot of people like us - yet at the time it is ironic that these conveniences and information sources are making corporate USA that much more competitive and are catalyzing the drive-out of the little guys. Wall Street has been good to the country as far as making us a rich super-power, but the corporate drive to keep up stock earnings year after year for investors will remain the one factor that leads the country into the toilet - it drives us to unnecessary wars for the defense, energy and banking market sectors, and forces cutbacks and layoffs for the sake of profit. The competition in our current free market system cannot possibly be sustainable without consolidation of business - which is choking out the character of America so that fewer companies remain, eh? Corruptness of public companies and creative accounting has everything to do with meeting earnings and keeping investors happy. Unless the SEC is allowed to make some serious alterations to the rules of free market - such as caps on market capitalization, corporate acquistion and consolidation, and still be considered fair by Wall Street, it looks to me like the quality of life in the US will remain in a downward spiral pattern that more and more begins to resemble the 'Matrix'.

Carol Slaughter
February 11, 2006

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

New York Life Insurance Co. has reported a dispersement in my name to the IRS. There has been no such dispersement. I finally stopped paying interest on money stolen from my ex-huaband's life insurance policies. I talked to New York Life Insurance reps and they even agreed w/ me that there has been no such dispersement of funds. They all said the same thing; that New York Life is able to make this ficticious claim to the IRS and that most people start paying New York Life when this happens to them w/ the IRS.

April 21, 2006

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Rick... We have our problems here thats for sure.. I won't sugar coat it... Corporate America has become synonymous with disception and greed, government corruption is out of control, fire arms are every where, racism effects the lives of most non white americans, single mothers struggle to raise children while fathers are fucking teenage yellow cabs, our media is being used to brain wash people here in the US and abroad. To make it worse your average white american male in the mid west supports all this out of ignorance and what he thinks is patriotism. What to do, what to do... Education is a beginning... lets see things for what they are... we don't have to apologize after each critism by saying "but this is the greatest country in the world". We don't have to buy a Ford when we know they are going to screw their own employees on purpose for the sake of immediate profits (American car companies hire people knowing they will be used, abused and then fired on a set schedule). Lets show the US officials that we will come out to elections and god forbid we might vote for a none democrat or republican. Lets not buy corporate american crap products from companies we know are evil and profiteering at the cost of americans. Send them a message that we are fed up with America that uses hype and propganda to trick the american people into electing them, or buying their products. I see so much "Buy American" or "Made in America" propganda all over, all it does is fatten up the wallets of American executives who will keep the profits and screw his employees.

May 11, 2006

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

Rick you are absolutely right.. the coroporate word has subsumed the govenemnt - but its not fascism when americans do it - its corporate driven politics.

People ask you to provide an answer but thats ridiculous, the best and most powerful people on the planet cant stop or even change whats happeneing to our government. Soros, Perot and many more have admitted defeat in trying to fix our problems. The best answer came from a european economist - when the U.S. government has bankrupted the country and the dollar falls then the entire world will experience a 'correction'. So for one I am looking forward to the collapse of our economy as it will be a return of our rights as citizens.

When the DoD can no longer fuels its planes and soldiers leave their posts to find food the empire will fall and we will return to our base needs - food, shelter and loved ones.

Chaos will eventually force itself to be the answer.

September 25, 2006

# re: American Business and Government – An era of crooks and thieves

This is one of the most important sites on the net, simply because you have a vioce, the right to free speech (only in a vertual sense) but thats good enough to spark a change IN THE REAL WORLD, mankind today has been so utterly dominated by the establishment (government/big business/religion) the big "3" have become so negatively synergistic in their methods of controlling mans mind that he helps them in fullfilling his own demise by remaining unconscious to the facts of reality(do to programming) whereby as such he cannot take the appropriate actions to free himself because the EGO has trained itself in the belief of dogmatic unselfish servitude, negating the higher self, which is a universal form, that is to say a divine providence (the source of all) which requires the individual controllingl force of consciousness to investigate and asertains the ever present governing laws of nature (life/reality/existence) by the common sense method and loyality to honesty, it begins by integrating the mind with what is real and seperating that which is not by razor sharp analysis if possible, which serves up more efficiently lifes pleasures and necessities on an assending scale of happiness.........all thats required is to stop the insanity and negate the programming which causes decay on all planes, in the final analysis its a matter of choosing life over death by choosing life we extend the life of the planet and utimately the universe itself the one is contained in the all and the all is contained in the one, the one of big heart/mind/spirit the ultimate big "3" that give rise to all.

make money online
May 25, 2008

# make money online

The process itself isn't too complicated: millimeter- sized particles of waste biomass come into contact with a 700- 800 C porous surface and immediately form a mix of gases. These then interact with a catalyst made out of rhodium that expedites the partial oxidation reactions necessary to keep the system hot and convert the gases into hydrogen and carbon monoxide— which are either burned to generate electricity or turned into liquid fuels. The system only takes 70 milliseconds to break down the biomass— a...

West Wind  © Rick Strahl, West Wind Technologies, 2005 - 2023