Saturday, June 30, 2012

From "Some assembly Required"

Just some bits - please follow link to original

Dewey Wins: Both Fox and CNN reported, incorrectly, that the Affordable Care Act had been declared unconstitutional. Trust, but verify.

Sleep On It: Over 200,000 public school students are homeless, sleeping in shelters.

Another Brick In The Wall: Joining the hottest spring on record and the current central US heat wave and the growing drought in the middle of the country, scientists point out that more frequent and larger wildfires are also predicted by the climate change theorists. It is, they say, “what global warming really looks like.”

 Things That Are Not Crime: This week we learned that taking customer money to pay your taxes is not a crime. Manipulating the prices of stocks and bonds is not a crime, and that manipulating LIBOR, the world's key interest rate, is not a crime. But then, not a single bank that enabled Madoff's Ponzi scheme (and should have known he was bent) has given a single client a single cent, nor have Madoff's “consolidators” been jailed. Nor have any Wall Streeters taken a perp walk for mortgage-related securities fraud. And certainly several gentlemen involved in various parts of the MFGlobal affair should be on extended vacations... We are a nation of laws, unenforced laws.

 Unclear On The Concept: Rand Paul (Clueless-KY) says that just because the Supreme Court rules a law to be constitutional does not mean that the law is constitutional.

"Bible Spice"

O.K.  --  I was wandering around these here interwebs, looking at some of the "libtard" sites, reading comments, when I came across someone calling 1/2 term former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin - now working for Fox "News" - "Bible Spice".  That's even better than "Caribou Barbie".    --------    Pass it on. 

Yankee Game

So the Yankees finally beat the White Sox today.  Soriano closed the game out, inducing a double play.

My partner said recently that Mariano Rivera was the "Zen Master", while R. Soriano is "The Undertaker".  I suspect a lot of this is based on their respective demeanor's.  In any case, someone finally got the job done.
Robert Reich on the supreme Court decision on "Obamacare" - please follow link to original

Roberts’ Switch

Thursday, June 28, 2012
Today a majority of the Court upheld the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare in recognition of its importance as a key initiative of the Obama administration. The big surprise, for many, was the vote by the Chief Justice of the Court, John Roberts, to join with the Court’s four liberals.

Roberts’ decision is not without precedent. Seventy-five years ago, another Justice Roberts – no relation to the current Chief Justice – made a similar switch. Justice Owen Roberts had voted with the Court’s conservative majority in a host of 5-4 decisions invalidating New Deal legislation, but in March of 1937 he suddenly switched sides and began joining with the Court’s four liberals.  In popular lore, Roberts’ switch saved the Court – not only from Franklin D. Roosevelt’s threat to pack it with justices more amenable to the New Deal but, more importantly, from the public’s increasing perception of the Court as a partisan, political branch of government.

Chief Justice John Roberts isn’t related to his namesake but the current Roberts’ move today marks a close parallel. By joining with the Court’s four liberals who have been in the minority in many important cases – including the 2010 decision, Citizen’s United vs. Federal Election Commission, which struck down constraints on corporate political spending as being in violation of the Constitution’s First Amendment guaranteeing freedom of speech – the current Justice Roberts may have, like his earlier namesake, saved the Court from a growing reputation for political partisanship.

As Alexander Hamilton pointed out when the Constitution was being written, the Supreme Court is the “least dangerous branch” of government because it has neither the purse (it can’t enforce its rulings by threatening to withhold public money) nor the sword (it has no police or military to back up its decisions). It has only the trust and confidence of average citizens. If it is viewed as politically partisan, that trust is in jeopardy. As Chief Justice, Roberts has a particular responsibility to maintain and enhance that trust.

Nothing else explains John Roberts’ switch – certainly not the convoluted constitutional logic he used to arrive at his decision. On the most critical issue in the case – whether the so-called “individual mandate” requiring almost all Americans to purchase health insurance was a constitutionally-permissible extension of federal power under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution – Roberts agreed with his conservative brethren that it was not.

Roberts nonetheless upheld the law because, he reasoned, the penalty to be collected by the government for non-compliance with the law is the equivalent of a tax – and the federal government has the power to tax. By this bizarre logic, the federal government can pass all sorts of unconstitutional laws – requiring people to sell themselves into slavery, for example – as long as the penalty for failing to do so is considered to be a tax.

Regardless of the fragility of Roberts’ logic, the Court’s majority has given a huge victory to the Obama administration and, arguably, the American people. The Affordable Care Act is still flawed – it doesn’t do nearly enough to control increases in healthcare costs that already constitute 18 percent of America’s Gross Domestic Product, and will soar even further as the baby boomers age – but it is a milestone. And like many other pieces of important legislation before it – Social Security, Medicare, Civil Rights and Voting Rights – it will be improved upon. Every Democratic president since Franklin D. Roosevelt has sought universal health care, to no avail.

But over the next four months the Act will be a political football. Mitt Romney, the Republican presidential candidate, has vowed to repeal the law as soon as he is elected (an odd promise in that no president can change or repeal a law without a majority of the House of Representatives and sixty Senators). Romney reiterated that vow this morning, after the Supreme Court announced its decision. His campaign, and so-called independent groups that have been collecting tens of millions of dollars from Romney supporters (and Obama haters), have already launched advertising campaigns condemning the Act.

Unfortunately for President Obama – and for Chief Justice Roberts, to the extent his aim in joining with the Court’s four liberals was to reduce the public appearance of the Court’s political partisanship – the four conservatives on the Court, all appointed by Republican presidents, were fiercely united in their view that the entire Act is unconstitutional. Their view will surely become part of the Romney campaign.

Conservative Southern Values Revived

Here is an excerpt from an article on Alternet  --  please follow link to the rest.

Conservative Southern Values Revived: How a Brutal Strain of American Aristocrats Have Come to Rule America

America didn't used to be run like an old Southern slave plantation, but we're headed that way now. How did that happen?
It's been said that the rich are different than you and me. What most Americans don't know is that they're also quite different from each other, and that which faction is currently running the show ultimately makes a vast difference in the kind of country we are.
Right now, a lot of our problems stem directly from the fact that the wrong sort has finally gotten the upper hand; a particularly brutal and anti-democratic strain of American aristocrat that the other elites have mostly managed to keep away from the levers of power since the Revolution. Worse: this bunch has set a very ugly tone that's corrupted how people with power and money behave in every corner of our culture. Here's what happened, and how it happened, and what it means for America now.
North versus South: Two Definitions of Liberty
Michael Lind first called out the existence of this conflict in his 2006 book, Made In Texas: George W. Bush and the Southern Takeover of American Politics. He argued that much of American history has been characterized by a struggle between two historical factions among the American elite -- and that the election of George W. Bush was a definitive sign that the wrong side was winning.
For most of our history, American economics, culture and politics have been dominated by a New England-based Yankee aristocracy that was rooted in Puritan communitarian values, educated at the Ivies and marinated in an ethic of noblesse oblige (the conviction that those who possess wealth and power are morally bound to use it for the betterment of society). While they've done their share of damage to the notion of democracy in the name of profit (as all financial elites inevitably do), this group has, for the most part, tempered its predatory instincts with a code that valued mass education and human rights; held up public service as both a duty and an honor; and imbued them with the belief that once you made your nut, you had a moral duty to do something positive with it for the betterment of mankind. Your own legacy depended on this.
Among the presidents, this strain gave us both Roosevelts, Woodrow Wilson, John F. Kennedy, and Poppy Bush -- nerdy, wonky intellectuals who, for all their faults, at least took the business of good government seriously. Among financial elites, Bill Gates and Warren Buffet still both partake strongly of this traditional view of wealth as power to be used for good. Even if we don't like their specific choices, the core impulse to improve the world is a good one -- and one that's been conspicuously absent in other aristocratic cultures.
Which brings us to that other great historical American nobility -- the plantation aristocracy of the lowland South, which has been notable throughout its 400-year history for its utter lack of civic interest, its hostility to the very ideas of democracy and human rights, its love of hierarchy, its fear of technology and progress, its reliance on brutality and violence to maintain “order,” and its outright celebration of inequality as an order divinely ordained by God.
As described by Colin Woodard in American Nations: The Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America, the elites of the Deep South are descended mainly from the owners of sugar, rum and cotton plantations from Barbados -- the younger sons of the British nobility who'd farmed up the Caribbean islands, and then came ashore to the southern coasts seeking more land. Woodward described the culture they created in the crescent stretching from Charleston, SC around to New Orleans this way:
It was a near-carbon copy of the West Indian slave state these Barbadians had left behind, a place notorious even then for its inhumanity....From the outset, Deep Southern culture was based on radical disparities in wealth and power, with a tiny elite commanding total obedience and enforcing it with state-sponsored terror. Its expansionist ambitions would put it on a collision course with its Yankee rivals, triggering military, social, and political conflicts that continue to plague the United States to this day.  .................................................

Friday, June 29, 2012

No banks fail

No banks failed today.  In the right wing blogosphere heads are still exploding.  CNN proved, for all time, it is NOT a news organization.  A lot of folks who CLAIMED to be against "Obamacare" breathed a sigh of relief  --  they know damn well there is a health care crisis, and have no alternative plan.  Chief Justice John Roberts is now persona non grata to our KKKonservatives.  Every so often I suspect some of the insurance companies who stand to make a fortune with "Obamacare" pulled Roberts aside and asked him if he ever wants to be a "real" millionaire.  The entire issue is made up, insane, and just a lot of crap. 
It isn't worth a damn and is still better than anything we have now. 

By the way  --  if you want The USA to continue being even a semblance of a Republic  --  you HAVE to support Obama.

Thursday, June 28, 2012


As you may have heard, The Supreme Court has uphrld "Obamacare", and the individual mandate (originally a REPUBLICAN idea).

Now a bunch of "conservatives" are saying THEY are moving to Canada  --  because the USA is "too socialist"  ---

I'm moving to Canada. Obviously the United States doesn't know what they are doing anymore. This used to be a great country... Pretty sad.

The supreme court upheld Obama Care. That's it. I'm moving to Canada!

I'm moving to Canada, the United States is entirely too socialist.

 Van Summers @VanSummers
#SCOTUS holds up free healthcare for everyone?! Screw this commie country, I'm moving to #Canada #whoswithme

 Etc., etc., etc.

Canadian healthcare - from Wikipedia   ---   
"Health care in Canada is delivered through a publicly funded health care system, which is mostly free at the point of use and has most services provided by private entities.[2] It is guided by the provisions of the Canada Health Act of 1984.[3] The government assures the quality of care through federal standards. The government does not participate in day-to-day care or collect any information about an individual's health, which remains confidential between a person and his or her physician. Canada's provincially based Medicare systems are cost-effective partly because of their administrative simplicity. In each province each doctor handles the insurance claim against the provincial insurer. There is no need for the person who accesses health care to be involved in billing and reclaim. Private insurance is only a minimal part of the overall health care system.
Competitive practices such as advertising are kept to a minimum, thus maximizing the percentage of revenues that go directly towards care. In general, costs are paid through funding from income taxes, although British Columbia is the only province to impose a fixed monthly premium which is waived or reduced for those on low incomes.[4] There are no deductibles on basic health care and co-pays are extremely low or non-existent (supplemental insurance such as Fair Pharmacare may have deductibles, depending on income). A health card is issued by the Provincial Ministry of Health to each individual who enrolls for the program and everyone receives the same level of care.[5] There is no need for a variety of plans because virtually all essential basic care is covered, including maternity and infertility problems. Depending on the province, dental and vision care may not be covered but are often insured by employers through private companies. In some provinces, private supplemental plans are available for those who desire private rooms if they are hospitalized. Cosmetic surgery and some forms of elective surgery are not considered essential care and are generally not covered. These can be paid out-of-pocket or through private insurers. Health coverage is not affected by loss or change of jobs, as long as premiums are up to date, and there are no lifetime limits or exclusions for pre-existing conditions.
Pharmaceutical medications are covered by public funds for the elderly or indigent,[6] or through employment-based private insurance. Drug prices are negotiated with suppliers by the federal government to control costs. Family physicians (often known as general practitioners or GPs in Canada) are chosen by individuals. If a patient wishes to see a specialist or is counseled to see a specialist, a referral can be made by a GP. Preventive care and early detection are considered important and yearly checkups are encouraged. Early detection not only extends life expectancy and quality of life, but cuts down overall costs."

Yesireee-bob, from the "almost healthcare for most" frying pan into the socialist healthcare for all fire.
Gosh, we are surrounded by REALLY smart folks  --  aren't we?

While we wait

While we await the healthcare decision being rendered by our far more political, and radical than ever Supreme court, here are some headlines.  This just shows how commonplace unbelievable crap has become:

 Draw your own conclusions  --  I think it amusing that folks go to MEXICO for medical care while our "Supreme Court" ponders if we are actually ONE NATION, if we really are all in this together, etc., etc.

The current Republican Party has become so anti-American that I'm afraid they really are in their "death throes".  Now various delegates to state conventions are being asked to sign "loyalty oaths", affirming their willingness to support the choice of their "kingmakers".  Even this attempt to reign in their most radical elements is a failure.  They have lied themselves into this position, distorting American history and tradition to fit their regressive politics, social vision, and policy  --  people follow, only to end up voting for policies that go directly against their self interest. 

These folks never understand that THEY are among those they call "the takers".  It's like all the anti-union cops and firemen who ALL belong to a union.

Insanity abounds.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Blame The Poor

I'm a shooter.  I like to go out and punch holes in paper targets with bullets.  My guns do not have bayonets, I do not shoot at representations of people, "enemies", or even animals (as an aside, I'm no longer mobile enough to go over hill and dale to hunt  --  and will never partake in what I call "canned hunts"  --  that's just murder.).

Being a shooter I belong to some online gun lists.  I stay away from politics because a great number of folks on those lists are VERY "conservative"  --  and those that are not tend to stay away from the insane arguments.  I was not always that smart  --  as a result, a number of very popular and very busy lists have banned me for life.

Recently a fairly tame discussion erupted  --  I stayed out of the "discussion".  A few folks actually spoke of REAL "traditional American values"  --  then one person presented a fairly well balanced approach to the "future of The Republic" (many of the "discussions" are of the "the sky is falling" variety).  He was told his ideas were both to the left and to the right, he was told, "you can't have it both ways", when his ideas made sense  --  not as much as I would like, but more balanced than most. 

It's clear to me we no longer even WANT to look for solutions  --  we all want "ideological purity"  --  we are as bad as the most committed Stalinist.

Then some folks chimed in and said ALL our current problems are CAUSED by POOR PEOPLE.

There in a nutshell (and I do mean NUT) is where our problems arise.  The person working two, three jobs to survive is "the problem".  All the poor  - especially if black or brown  --  are now THE CAUSE OF ALL OUR ILLS!!

This is beyond insane.  If YOU do not believe this is insane  --  do some research.  Now, even those who are born on first or second base scream out  --  "look, I hit a single/double" with no understanding of how LUCKY they are.

Excluding Outsiders or Coming Together for the Common Good: What’s the True Meaning of Patriotism?

This from Robert Reich  --  accurate and to the point.  Please follow link to original.

Excluding Outsiders or Coming Together for the Common Good: What’s the True Meaning of Patriotism?

Monday, June 25, 2012
Recently I publicly debated a regressive Republican who said Arizona and every other state should use whatever means necessary to keep out illegal immigrants. He also wants English to be spoken in every classroom in the nation, and the pledge of allegiance recited every morning. “We have to preserve and protect America,” he said. “That’s the meaning of patriotism.”
To my debating partner and other regressives, patriotism is about securing the nation from outsiders eager to overrun us. That’s why they also want to restore every dollar of the $500 billion in defense cuts scheduled to start in January. 
Yet many of these same regressives have no interest in preserving or protecting our system of government. To the contrary, they show every sign of wanting to be rid of it.
In fact, regressives in Congress have substituted partisanship for patriotism, placing party loyalty above loyalty to America.
The GOP’s highest-ranking member of Congress has said his “number one aim” is to unseat President Obama. For more than three years congressional Republicans have marched in lockstep, determined to do just that. They have brooked no compromise. 
They couldn’t care less if they mangle our government in pursuit of their partisan aims. Senate Republicans have used the filibuster more frequently in this Congress than in any congress in history.
House Republicans have been willing to shut down the government and even risk the full faith and credit of the United States in order to get their way.
Regressives on the Supreme Court have opened the floodgates to unlimited money from billionaires and corporations overwhelming our democracy, on the bizarre theory that money is speech under the First Amendment and corporations are people.
Regressive Republicans in Congress won’t even support legislation requiring the sources of this money-gusher be disclosed.
They’ve even signed a pledge – not of allegiance to the United States, but of allegiance to Grover Norquist, who has never been elected by anyone. Norquist’s “no-tax” pledge is interpreted only by Norquist, who says closing a tax loophole is tantamount to raising taxes and therefore violates the pledge.
True patriots don’t hate the government of the United States. They’re proud of it. Generations of Americans have risked their lives to preserve it. They may not like everything it does, and they justifiably worry when special interests gain too much power over it. But true patriots work to improve the U.S. government, not destroy it.
But regressive Republicans loathe the government – and are doing everything they can to paralyze it, starve it, and make the public so cynical about it that it’s no longer capable of doing much of anything. Tea Partiers are out to gut it entirely. Norquist says he wants to shrink it down to a size it can be “drowned in a bathtub.”
When arguing against paying their fair share of taxes, wealthy regressives claim “it’s my money.” But it’s their nation, too. And unless they pay their share America can’t meet the basic needs of our people. True patriotism means paying for America.
So when regressives talk about “preserving and protecting” the nation, be warned: They mean securing our borders, not securing our society. Within those borders, each of us is on our own. They don’t want a government that actively works for all our citizens.
Their patriotism is not about coming together for the common good. It is about excluding outsiders who they see as our common adversaries.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Hubert Sumlin & Sunnyland Slim - Come On Home Baby

Tribute to the Wolf... By Hubert Sumlin and .......

Hubert Sumlin & David Johansen - Smokestack Lightning

Buster poindexter - hot hot hot

It was 104F yesterday, today a high of 102F  --  here we go again.



That's about all I can say right now.  There's so much bad stuff happening, so many insane things, I just cannot comment on it anymore.  Perhaps some music later  --  I don't know.

Obama is no bargain  --  at the same time, we just have to vote for him  --  the alternative is beyond frightening.

We have failed wars going on.  We are killing folks left and right.  Now, folks are being executed in public parks  -- 

"Teenage lesbian couple found shot in Texas park, one fatally wounded"


And on and on.  We are still killing folks with drones  --  how thrilling, ypong "gamers" actually killing real people on a daily basis.

Look at the news.

We are all in a mess  --  so, as usual, we are all going to blame some "other"  --  and go out to kill that "other".

If you are a law-abiding liberal or progressive  --  I suggest you either find a safe place or learn how to DEFEND yourself  --  you are in danger from various and sundry right wing folks.

Things are not good.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Bullies on the Bus By CHARLES M. BLOW

I have not commented on the verbal rape and attempted destruction of the now famous bus monitor  --  this column from "The New York Times" by Charles Blow says most of it.  --  as usual, please follow link to original

 “Making the Bus Monitor Cry.”

That’s the name of the video. It’s more than 10 minutes long, but if you make it through more than three of them with your eyes not getting misty and your blood not boiling then you are a rock, or at least your heart is.
The video shows Karen Klein, a 68-year-old grandmother and bus monitor in upstate New York, being relentlessly tormented by a group of young boys.
They hurl profanities. One asks for her address because he says he wants to go urinate on her door. Others are more explicit about defiling her.
One boy tells her that she doesn’t have a family because “they all killed themselves because they didn’t want to be near you.” (Her eldest son committed suicide.)
One suggests that if he were to stab her, his knife would go through her “like butter.”
Since the video was posted to YouTube, there has been an outpouring of shock and outrage.
An online campaign set up to raise $5,000 to send Klein on a vacation had raised more than $500,000 by midday Friday, Klein has made the media circuit recounting her ordeal and some of the children have apologized.
But what, if anything, does this say about society at large? Many things one could argue, but, for me, it is a remarkably apt metaphor for this moment in the American discourse in which hostility has been drawn out into the sunlight.
Those boys are us, or at least too many of us: America at its ugliest. It is that part of society that sees the weak and vulnerable as worthy of derision and animus.
This kind of behavior is not isolated to children and school buses and suburban communities. It stretches to the upper reaches of society — our politics and our pulpits and our public squares.
Whether it is a Republican debate audience booing a gay soldier or Rush Limbaugh’s vicious attack on a female Georgetown law student or Newt Gingrich’s salvos at the poor, bullying has become boilerplate. Hiss and taunt. Tease and intimidate. Target your enemies and torture them mercilessly. Maintain primacy through predation.
Traditionally inferior identity roles are registered in a variety of ways. For Klein, she was elderly and female and not thin or rich. For others, it is skin color, country of origin, object of affection or some other accident of birth.
The country is changing, and that change is creating friction: between the traditional ruling classes and emerging ones; between traditional social structures and altered ones; between a long-held vision of an American ideal and growing reality that its time has passed.
And that change is coming with an unrelenting swiftness.
Last month, the Census Bureau reported that for the first time in the country’s history, minority births outnumbered those of whites. And The New York Times recently highlighted a Brookings Institution demographer’s calculations that, “minorities accounted for 92 percent of the nation’s population growth in the decade that ended in 2010.”
Furthermore, there are now more women in college than men, and a Pew Research Center poll published in April found that, “in a reversal of traditional gender roles, young women now surpass young men in the importance they place on having a high-paying career or profession.”
A Gallup poll released Thursday found that a record number of people (54 percent) say that they would be willing to vote for an atheist for president, and a Gallup poll last month found that more people support same-sex marriage than oppose it.
These dramatic shifts are upending the majority-minority paradigm and are making many people uneasy.
The Republican-Democratic divide is increasingly becoming an all-white/multicultural divide, a male/female divide, and a more religious/less religious divide — the formers the traditional power classes, and the latters the emerging ones.
This has led to some increasingly unseemly attacks at traditionally marginalized groups, even as — and possibly particularly because — they grow more powerful.
Women are under attack. Hispanics are under attack. Minority voting rights are under attack. The poor are under attack. Unsurprisingly, those doing the attacking in every case are from the right.
Seldom is power freely passed and painlessly surrendered, particularly when the traditionally powerful see the realignment as an existential threat.
The bullying on that bus was awful, but so is the bullying in our politics. Those boys were trying to exert power over a person placed there to rein them in. But bullying is always about power — projecting more than you have in order to accrue more than your share.
Sounds like the frightened, insecure part of American society

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Les Paul / Somewhere Over The Rainbow

Fmr. 78rpm & 10"LP:Lester Leaps In, pts I - III-Jazz At The Philharmonic Vol. 4, 1944-Disc Album 504

J.J. Johnson - trombone
Illinois Jacquet, Jack McVea - tenor saxes
Les Paul - guitar
Nat King "Shorty Nadine" Cole - piano
Johnny Miller - bass
Lee (Prez' brother) Young - drums

BONUS JATP!: Perdido with Ella Fitzgerald - Jazz At The Philharmonic, 1949

Ella Fitzgerald - vocal
Roy Eldridge - trumpet
Tommy Turk - trombone
Charlie Parker - alto sax
Flip Phillips, Lester Young - tenor saxes
Hank Jones - piano
Ray Brown - bass
Buddy Rich - drums


Lionel Hampton & Friends - Rosetta


Following are some versions of "Stardust" - enjoy

Lionel Hampton - Stardust -- parts 1 and 2

St├ęphane Grappelli - Stardust

Sarah Vaughan - Stardust (1958)

【Ella Fitzgerald】Stardust (1954)

Coleman Hawkins Stardust

Paul Krugman on the 'Cartoon Physics' of the 2008 Crash

Friday, June 22, 2012

Sandusky Guilty

Guilty, 45 of 48 counts.  Many serious charges.  Penn State still under a cloud for not doing ANYTHING.

I think Penn State should get the NCAA "death penalty"  --  keep these callous, morally challenged, folks out of ALL college athletics for 5 - 10 years.

Prove you are a "top flight University".  Teach kids some ethics, integrity, etc.  It's obvious you can't do that while sheltering coaches and athletes.

No Banks Eaten Today -- Fri 10:16 PM 2012

I looked at the date.  2012!  WOW!  When I was a child the very idea of 2012 was amazing, impossible, insane,  2012 meant I was 73 years old.  When I was 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12 - etc. the idea of living 73 years was beyond my comprehension.  Of course, this was back in the late 40's and early 50's (born in 1939) - back before digital watches, back when TV was new and coast to coast programs were impossible.  This was before cell phones  --  some folks still had "party lines", the phone was only for "emergencies", and radio was still important. 

It really was different  --  for one thing kids PLAYED.  There were few, if any, organized sports for kids.  Etc., etc., etc.

Anyway. I'm beginning to truly understand how old I am.  It's really interesting

The Euro Is Flat

This from Dr. Krugman's blog  --  at last someone is willing to tell the truth!  Please follow link to original'

The Euro Is Flat

Still limited blogging. But I thought I’d post about something that sort of surprised me.
As we contemplate the euro mess, there’s a strong tendency to think of it as having a lot to do with the fundamental inequalities in overall productivity and economic development between euro members — backward, semi-developed countries like Greece or Portugal (not my view, but what you often hear) awkwardly tied to powerhouses like Germany.
So it comes as something of a shock to look at Eurostat data (pdf) on real GDP per capita (or productivity, which look similar). Sure, Greece and Portugal are relatively poor, with GDP per capita of 82 and 77 percent, respectively, of the EU average; this means roughly 76 and 71 percent of the eurozone average, since the euro countries are a bit richer than the EU as a whole. Meanwhile, Germany is at 120 percent of the EU, or 112 percent of the EZ.
But it’s no different, really, than the US situation (look under per capita GDP). Alabama is at 74 percent of the US average, Mississippi at 67, with New England and the Middle Atlantic states at 118 and 116.
In other words, as far as underlying economic inequalities are concerned, the EZ is no worse than the US.
The difference, mainly, is that we think of ourselves as a nation, and blithely accept fiscal measures that routinely transfer large sums to the poorer states without even thinking of it as a regional issue — in fact, the states that are effectively on the dole tend to vote Republican and imagine themselves deeply self-reliant.
The thing is, we didn’t always think of ourselves as a nation, either. Before the Civil War, people talked about “these United States”; it was only after the war that “these” became “the”.
So the key to the success of the dollar zone may be summed up in three words: William Tecumseh Sherman.

A Visit To "Some Assembly Required"

Since I've been largely absent for about a week  --  it's time for a visit to "Some assembly Required".  Please follow link, go to the original, and read the rest.  You might also go to the "original original" (follow his link) and read more on the topic.

 A Quotation: "the United States has been taken over by an amoral financial oligarchy, and the American dream of opportunity, education, and upward mobility is now largely confined to the top few percent of the population." Charles Ferguson.

 Tidal Currents: Americans definitely don’t trust banks and the federal government, but do think state and local governments had “about the right” amount of power. Americans have clearly supported higher taxes on the rich and a much more punitive approach to banker compensation. Neither has happened. Americans were not clamoring to fire huge numbers of teachers, police, firemen and health service workers. Republican theologians were.

 Safety Last: Experts now - 30 trillion tons too late - say that injecting toxic crap deep into the earth is not safe and the US industries should never have been allowed to do it. It will damage all of us - but you can be sure not a single company will have to spend a dime in remediation.

 Cow/Cabbage: First US manufacturing comes in with its slowest growth in 11 months, the number of new unemployment claims is essentially stagnant, Mid-Atlantic factory activity hits a 10-month low, and sales of existing houses slip in May. Then the markets have their second worst day of the year, dropping 2% - which gets blamed on poor data from China and Europe plus the Fed's cutting its forecast for the US economy. After the close, Moody's rained on everybody's parade, downgrading 15 of the world's largest banks including BofA, JPMorgan, Citi, and even Goldman Sachs. Morgan Stanley got kicked down to notches. None of this was news nor comes a a great surprise, except to those whiz-kids who run our economy. Friday has no major announcements scheduled, so the day can be spent figuring out what it all means. Yeah, there's a bunch of European data due, but Europe is so over already.

When things go wrong, it is not the leaders or investment bankers who pay...

This from Reuters by way of "Common Dreams"  --  please follow link to original

America's Long Slope Down

A broad swath of official economic data shows that America and its people are in much worse shape than when we paid higher taxes, higher interest rates and made more of the manufactured goods we use.The numbers since the turn of the millennium point to even worse times ahead if we stay the course. Let’s look at the official numbers in today’s dollars and then what can be done to change course.
First, incomes and jobs since 2000 measured per American:
Internal Revenue Service data show that average adjusted gross income fell $2,699 through 2010 or 9 percent, compared to 2000. That’s the equivalent of making it through Thanksgiving weekend and then having no income for the rest of the year.
Had average incomes just stayed at the level in 2000, Americans through 2009 would have earned $3.5 trillion more income, the equivalent of $26,000 per taxpayer over a decade. Preliminary 2010 data show a partial rebound, reducing the shortfall by a fifth to $2.8 trillion or $21,000 per taxpayer.
Wages per capita in 2010 were 4.3 percent less than in 2000, effectively reducing to 50 weeks the pay for 52 weeks of work. The median wage in 2010 fell back to the level of 1999, with half of workers grossing less than $507 a week, half more, Social Security tax data show. The bottom third, 50 million workers, averaged just $116 a week in 2010.
Social Security and Census data show that the number of people with any work increased just 1.5 percent from 2000 to 2010 while population grew 6.4 times faster. That’s why millions of people cannot find work no matter how hard they try.
In May, nearly 23 million workers, 14.8 percent, were jobless or underemployed, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. At, a website dedicated to exposing and analyzing flaws in government economic data, economist John Williams also counts people who have given up hope of finding work. His figure for May brings the total to almost 30 million people, one in five.
An economy with many millions more workers than jobs puts downward pressure on wages, especially for those without highly developed skills.
Mortgage debt grew 51 percent through 2010, even though incomes and wages fell, which should result in steady or lower housing prices, not higher prices.
(In 2011, as banks foreclosed on more homes, mortgage debt per capita declined, but was still 42 percent greater than in 2000.)
Consumer debt was virtually unchanged, at nearly $8,300 in 2010, helping explain weak sales of automobiles, furniture and appliances.
We need to recognize that the tax cutters were snake oil salesmenNow how about trade? Exporting more than we import creates jobs and riches.
From 2000, the year before China joined the World Trade Organization, to 2011 imports from China grew 62 percent faster than exports to China, Census data show. The annual trade deficit soared to $302 billion from $112 billion.
U.S. exports to China in 2011 ($106 billion) were smaller than US imports from China back in 2000 ($133 billion), showing the lopsided nature of trade with China, where workers lack rights, safety rules are minimal and pollution rampant.
Some 56,000 American factories have closed since 2000, as jobs and the knowledge that goes with those jobs moved to China.
Trade with China has destroyed every 55th job in America, nearly 2.8 million positions, analysis of government data by Robert E. Scott of the Economic Policy Institute shows. That equals wiping out every job in the greater Philadelphia metropolitan area. Nearly two million of those jobs were in manufacturing, Bureau of Labor Statistics and U.S. International Trade Commission data show.
And what of taxes? The 2001 and 2003 tax cuts were promoted as keys to prosperity. Now Mitt Romney, virtually all Republicans and a fair number of Democrats say more tax cuts will make us prosper. President Barack Obama wants to cut corporate tax rates by a third.
Again, measured per capita, the IRS data show a pattern of shrinking numbers, with modest upticks in 2010.
Individual income taxes in 2010 averaged $2,995, down $1,654 or almost 36 percent from 2000. Use 2001 as the base year — because it was both a recession year and the first year of the temporary George W. Bush tax cuts — and in 2010 per capita income tax revenues were down one third.
In 2011, as the economy improved slightly, income tax revenues rose, but were still 26 percent smaller than in 2000.
The bottom line: less income, hardly any more jobs, sharply increased mortgage debt and Washington ledgers awash in red ink as voters are asked to endorse even more tax cuts.
How many years of evidence does it take to establish that a policy worked or failed?
Will continuing our current tax, credit and trade policies produce favorable results in the future? Will they produce higher incomes?
My reading of this and tons more data is that the Bush tax cuts utterly failed, the Fed’s artificially low-interest rate policies under presidents Bush and Obama do far more damage than good (especially to savers), and that the United States is harmed both by the imbalance in the trade relationship with China and scores of trade agreements with South Korea and other low-wage countries that are deeply flawed at best.
We need to recognize that the tax cutters were snake oil salesmen, the Federal Reserve an enabler of damaging debts and that bilateral trade deals are written of, by and for global financiers, not workers.
To paraphrase the Huey Lewis song, we need a new policy.

Prisons, Privatization, Patronage By PAUL KRUGMAN

This by Prof. Krugman, from "The New York Times" - please follow link to original

Over the past few days, The New York Times has published several terrifying reports about New Jersey’s system of halfway houses — privately run adjuncts to the regular system of prisons. The series is a model of investigative reporting, which everyone should read. But it should also be seen in context. The horrors described are part of a broader pattern in which essential functions of government are being both privatized and degraded.
First of all, about those halfway houses: In 2010, Chris Christie, the state’s governor — who has close personal ties to Community Education Centers, the largest operator of these facilities, and who once worked as a lobbyist for the firm — described the company’s operations as “representing the very best of the human spirit.” But The Times’s reports instead portray something closer to hell on earth — an understaffed, poorly run system, with a demoralized work force, from which the most dangerous individuals often escape to wreak havoc, while relatively mild offenders face terror and abuse at the hands of other inmates.
It’s a terrible story. But, as I said, you really need to see it in the broader context of a nationwide drive on the part of America’s right to privatize government functions, very much including the operation of prisons. What’s behind this drive?
You might be tempted to say that it reflects conservative belief in the magic of the marketplace, in the superiority of free-market competition over government planning. And that’s certainly the way right-wing politicians like to frame the issue.
But if you think about it even for a minute, you realize that the one thing the companies that make up the prison-industrial complex — companies like Community Education or the private-prison giant Corrections Corporation of America — are definitely not doing is competing in a free market. They are, instead, living off government contracts. There isn’t any market here, and there is, therefore, no reason to expect any magical gains in efficiency.
And, sure enough, despite many promises that prison privatization will lead to big cost savings, such savings — as a comprehensive study by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, part of the U.S. Department of Justice, concluded — “have simply not materialized.” To the extent that private prison operators do manage to save money, they do so through “reductions in staffing patterns, fringe benefits, and other labor-related costs.”
So let’s see: Privatized prisons save money by employing fewer guards and other workers, and by paying them badly. And then we get horror stories about how these prisons are run. What a surprise!
So what’s really behind the drive to privatize prisons, and just about everything else?
One answer is that privatization can serve as a stealth form of government borrowing, in which governments avoid recording upfront expenses (or even raise money by selling existing facilities) while raising their long-run costs in ways taxpayers can’t see. We hear a lot about the hidden debts that states have incurred in the form of pension liabilities; we don’t hear much about the hidden debts now being accumulated in the form of long-term contracts with private companies hired to operate prisons, schools and more.
Another answer is that privatization is a way of getting rid of public employees, who do have a habit of unionizing and tend to lean Democratic in any case.
But the main answer, surely, is to follow the money. Never mind what privatization does or doesn’t do to state budgets; think instead of what it does for both the campaign coffers and the personal finances of politicians and their friends. As more and more government functions get privatized, states become pay-to-play paradises, in which both political contributions and contracts for friends and relatives become a quid pro quo for getting government business. Are the corporations capturing the politicians, or the politicians capturing the corporations? Does it matter?
Now, someone will surely point out that nonprivatized government has its own problems of undue influence, that prison guards and teachers’ unions also have political clout, and this clout sometimes distorts public policy. Fair enough. But such influence tends to be relatively transparent. Everyone knows about those arguably excessive public pensions; it took an investigation by The Times over several months to bring the account of New Jersey’s halfway-house-hell to light.
The point, then, is that you shouldn’t imagine that what The Times discovered about prison privatization in New Jersey is an isolated instance of bad behavior. It is, instead, almost surely a glimpse of a pervasive and growing reality, of a corrupt nexus of privatization and patronage that is undermining government across much of our nation.

What Stonewall Got Right, and Occupy Got Wrong Posted by Linda Hirshman .

This from "The New Yorker" - please follow link to original

This Sunday, as every fourth Sunday in June, the streets of New York will fill with prideful marchers celebrating Pride Month. There will be similar marches, too, in cities around the country. Sunday marks the forty-third year since the uprising in a Greenwich Village bar called Stonewall that supposedly started the modern gay revolution. The myth is that a few hundred angry people acted out in lower Manhattan, and the world changed. Maybe that’s where Occupy Wall Street got the idea that this is how it’s done.
It’s the wrong lesson. Stonewall was the product of a handful of brilliant community organizers applying basic principles of social organizing. Without them, Stonewall would have been nothing more than one of several gay-bar pushbacks in the late sixties, or another one of the non-gay street demonstrations that characterized New York in that tumultuous time. It was the dedicated strategizing of the men and women of the nascent gay movement that turned something unremarkable into the Bastille. Their achievement is a field guide to how to make a social movement, and also offers insight into why Occupy is failing.
Stonewall did not come from nowhere. The first night, when the bar erupted, a bunch of experienced activists from the unfashionable old nineteen-fifties gay organization, the Mattachine Society, and from the hot new antiwar movement, were in the crowd. Jim Fouratt, a young and charismatic member of Students for a Democratic Society, who had already been trying to radicalize the Mattachine Society, stopped in his tracks when he saw the crowd gathering outside the bar. Another veteran S.D.S.’er, John O’Brien, from the board of the counterculture free school Alternate U., was there. Bob Kohler, from the old Congress of Racial Equality, walked by and stayed. Gay bookstore owner Craig Rodwell shouted “gay power,” and although no one took up the chant, a big crowd gathered and fought the police again the next night. (I describe the scene in a new book, “Victory: The Triumphant Gay Revolution.”)
If not for Rodwell, and the Mattachine’s President, Dick Leitsch, two nights of rioting might have been the end. In the previous five years, two similar uprisings in California had come to naught. But the day after Stonewall, a Sunday, teams of activists spread out around the neighborhood, distributing manifestos (“The Hairpin Drop Heard Round the World”). Unlike Occupy Wall Street, the gay activists had a clear list of demands. “Get the Mafia out of the bars,” the leaflets proclaimed. “No more police raids.”
The activists also had a regular place to meet in a structured way—and meetings, not flash mobs, are the heart of an effective movement. Within days, the stodgy old Mattachine Society had called an assembly at their regular meeting place to talk about what to do next. It was essentially the last Mattachine meeting, as the gathering erupted into chaotic demands for radical action, but without the established framework of meeting, it might have ended there. The Mattachine dissenters descended on a lefty Alternate U. classroom—and kept meeting, this time as the Gay Liberation Front. To raise money, they started having Friday night dances. In a matter of weeks, the gay community went from having to hide out in a Mafia bar to dancing at fundraisers.
Over the next few months, as the G.L.F. met and debated whether anyone is free until everyone is free and other movement-destroying rabbit holes familiar to the followers of Occupy Wall Street, Rodwell, the bookstore owner, decided to plan a march to commemorate the event on the fourth Sunday in June a year later. Call it the Pride Parade. There have been many gay parades since 1970, but at that time it was a revolutionary notion—that gay people would come out of the closet and into a parade all at once. Rodwell did what any smart organizer would do: he brought in a handful of his trusted friends to plan the event. Rodwell’s committee met every week in the bookstore. He had a discrete, manageable goal: to get people to show up on a particular Sunday in June, 1970. Reaching out to all the factions that were rapidly proliferating after Stonewall, he did not have to get everyone to agree on some lofty mission or to mass in front of a dozen banks to protest everything everybody did wrong, as Occupy did to so little effect on May Day this year. Just come out, as the old gay slogan said. And so they did.
As Rodwell left the Stonewall Inn that Sunday morning, a year after the riots and forty-two years ago this month, there were perhaps a dozen marchers. But as they proceeded from Stonewall up Fifth Avenue to Central Park, the numbers grew until there were an unheard of crowd of thousands of gay men and lesbian women out and out of doors for the first time in history. And so the myth of Stonewall began. Strategic, discrete, well-planned, original (in its time), the Stonewall march is the pure manifestation of how social movements succeed. It was the birthday party for Stonewall, not the birth the year before, that gave rise to the triumphant gay revolution.

Read more

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Walmart's Forced Labor: We Feel Like We Are Slaves by Abby Zimet

How does Walmart keep its prices so low? The so-called guest workers from Mexico who peel crawfish at a Louisiana seafood supplier for Wal-Mart know: They are locked inside the plant, forced to work 24-hour shifts, cursed and threatened with beatings by shovel if they fail to make their quota, and endure  constant surveillance at their nearby trailers from a boss who warns them, "You don’t want to know me as an enemy." Having gone on strike from C.J.’s Seafood and filed federal complaints, they head to New York today to protest Wal-Mart, its subsidiaries and related boards - including Goldman Sachs - at their corporate headquarters and homes. Brought to you by the feisty National Guestworker Alliance.

That was from "Common Dreams"   --  please follow link to original

Monday, June 18, 2012

High Society - Barney Bigard and Art Hodes, 1968

Meet me in Chicago - Pee Wee Russell 1968

Lunceford Special Jimmie Lunceford

Rose Room -Jimmie Lunceford

Great Latvia Success Story!

Cars, Suburbs, The New Urbanists, and FREEDOM

My partner recently read me an excerpt of an article that was both anti-suburb and anti-automobile.  It spoke of how the automobile culture ruined America, while the suburbs destroyed community, cohesiveness, and culture.

I thought back to the period right after WWII when GI's were returning home, getting married, having kids  --  and there was no place to put them.  We were short of housing.  There weren't enough apartments or houses these folks could afford.

Does anyone remember "Quonset Hut Communities"?  They were thrown up on vacant land to provide temporary housing for families post war.  They were all over the country.  Basically they were mobile homes built a bit better, with steel exteriors.  Veterans, their families, multitudes of kids  --  people desperate for permanent housing.

Along came Levitt.  Levittowns were a boon to all these folks.  They were affordable homes, in areas where either farmers or wealthy folks lived before.  Many of the veterans were from cities.  Many from old, cramped apartments in cities with antiquated housing stock.  If you grew up on a block where all the houses looked exactly the same (it doesn't matter if they're "row houses", "brownstones", "semi-attached two family houses", or an apartment in a complex where every building looked the same) living on a block where Cape Cod after Cape Cod lined up was not a problem.  In addition, these early "suburban pioneers" were not the upper middle class home owners who lived in far more splendor.  The Republicans feared this influx of "rabble" in THEIR parts of town.

The automobile was a natural extension of suburban living.  Fuel was cheap, cars were not all that expensive - after the initial demand was met.  Try to remember, during WWII passenger cars were unavailable and gasoline - as well as everything else - was rationed.

After the war we were in a new land of plenty. The depression was over, we had won, life looked good (especially if you were white and Christian).

The only downside was that dad gave up his time going to and from work - so his family could live better.  This was the tradeoff.  Kids had better schools (or, at least newer schools), you had a little piece of land, a bit more room - and you were no longer in a 4th floor walk-up in Brooklyn, Queens, or The Bronx  --  with 2 or 3 kids sharing a bedroom, and that constant smell of cooked cabbage.

In any case, if you did live in an apartment, you usually had to take public transit, or drive to your job.  In the suburbs, folks usually drove to the station, took a train into "the city", and then took public transportation to work.  Folks who were not well-to-do did not usually drive their automobile to work - unless there was a company parking lot.  Some folks drove into the outer boroughs and took a Subway, or El. to work.  Life was much simpler - and we neither needed, nor had as much "stuff".

I don't think you can blame the proliferation of "stuff" on either the automobile or the suburbs.   Nor can you really blame them for our current lack of "community".  Doesn't anyone remember when the "faceless cities", where "you never knew your neighbors" were to blame?  Doesn't anyone recall early suburban living where they had Community Centers, block parties, cookouts, etc., etc., etc.?  Where do you think Little League and other organized kids sports came from?  Don't you understand they were seen as an improvement over the pick-up games of stickball, and the total lack of places for city kids to play baseball?

In any case, unintended consequences abound NO MATTER WHAT YOU DO!

As far as the automobile goes  --  what was the entire Beat Generation about?  It was freedom, movement, new ideas  --  it was "On The Road".  That's the automobile.  Cars allowed us to go from here to there - not only in our minds, but in reality.  People who were neither "Beats" nor "Hippies" went elsewhere - and reinvented themselves.  After WWII we had new music (can you say "be-bop"), poetry, art (N.Y. School, abstract expressionism, etc).  Pent up creativity  --  which also scared the s**t out of "the establishment".
About after war housing:  Veterans are called for housing project (NY Times, 10/16/1946)

"The selection of occupants for the first seventy-five apartments at the huge Federal temporary housing development at Northern Boulevard and Seventy-first Street, Jackson Heights, Queens, got under way yesterday, just ten days after construction had begun...."

(notice FEDERAL temporary housing  --  today's Republicans would say any Federal activity to help veterans would be "unprecedented", and an "attack on private industry"  --  back then, we often did what was needed.)

I suggest a lot of the anti-suburb, anti-automobile ideas that abound today come from folks who grew up in suburbs, and have an idealized view of "The New Urbanism".  The kid who could not wait to own a car so he/she could "get away" from the city has been replaced by the kid who could not wait to get away from those cold, restrictive suburbs.  We carry those ideas with us into what some call "adulthood"  --  only to recognize how childish we really are only when we get old, and are no longer held saptive by our lusts, dreams, and wants.

I'm quite sure that when, or if, The New Urbanists" get their way  --  kids who grow up there will lust for the open spaces of their idealized idea of the suburbs, and the freedom of a personal means of transportation  --  other than their sensible bicycle.

As I said  --  EVERYTHING has unintended consequences.  

Can’t Get No Satisfaction

This direct from Dr. Paul Krugman's blog.  Nothing more need be said about the situation in Greece.  Please follow link to original

Can’t Get No Satisfaction

Busy morning, so just a brief post now.
At any given time, there tends to be one number I check on waking up to see how close we are to the apocalypse. Often it has been the US 10-year — where down is bad, because it shows pessimism about the economy. Right now it’s the Spanish 10-year, where up is bad, because it shows pessimism about the future of the euro.
And guess what: after an election that supposedly was a victory for the forces of orthodoxy, the yield has spiked. 7.25 percent!
The reasons aren’t hard to see: we have a maybe coalition that received a minority of the votes, pursuing a strategy almost guaranteed to fail, with parties ranging from radical to full-on fascist waiting in the wings. But what was the market expecting?
In a way, the worst thing about the Greek election is the possibility that it will encourage the Germans and the ECB to persist a bit longer with their fantasies about how things might work.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Helen Merrill - What's New?

Personnel: Helen Merrill (vocal), Clifford Brown (trumpet), Danny Bank (flute, baritone sax), Barry Galbraith (guitar), Jimmy Jones (piano), Oscar Pettiford (bass), Bobby Donaldson (drums), Quincy Jones (arrange, conduct)

Johnny Griffin - My Little Suede Shoes

Clifford Brown & Eric Dolphy - Deception

Recorded live at Eric Dolphy's home, Los Angeles, June or July, 1954

Alto Saxophone -- Eric Dolphy
Bass -- George Morrow
Drums -- Max Roach
Piano -- Richie Powell
Tenor Saxophone -- Harold Land
Trumpet -- Clifford Brown

Thelonious Monk - Round About Midnight

Kenny Clark & Bud Powell - Blues in the Closet


Oscar Pettiford

Oscar Pettiford Sextet - Marcel the Furrier

Kai Winding - tb
Al Cohn - ts
Tal Farlow - g
Henri Renaud - p
Oscar Pettiford - b
Max Roach - d

Friday, June 15, 2012

31 - #3 in Tenn.

Clayton Bank and Trust, Knoxville, Tennessee, Assumes All of the Deposits of the Farmers Bank of Lynchburg, Lynchburg, Tennessee

June 15, 2012
Media Contact:
Greg Hernandez (202) 898-6984
Cell: (202) 340-4922

The Farmers Bank of Lynchburg, Lynchburg, Tennessee, was closed today by the Tennessee Department of Financial Institutions, which appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. To protect the depositors, the FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement with Clayton Bank and Trust, Knoxville, Tennessee, to assume all of the deposits of The Farmers Bank of Lynchburg.
The four branches of The Farmers Bank of Lynchburg will reopen during their normal business hours beginning Saturday as branches of Clayton Bank and Trust, including the one branch that operates as First State Bank, Chapel Hill, Tennessee, and the two branches that operate as Oakland Deposit Bank, Oakland, Tennessee. Depositors will automatically become depositors of Clayton Bank and Trust. Deposits will continue to be insured by the FDIC, so there is no need for customers to change their banking relationship in order to retain their deposit insurance coverage up to applicable limits. Customers of The Farmers Bank of Lynchburg should continue to use their existing branch until they receive notice from Clayton Bank and Trust that it has completed systems changes to allow other Clayton Bank and Trust branches to process their accounts as well.
This evening and over the weekend, depositors of The Farmers Bank of Lynchburg can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards. Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.
As of March 31, 2012, The Farmers Bank of Lynchburg had approximately $163.9 million in total assets and $156.4 million in total deposits. Clayton Bank and Trust will pay the FDIC a premium of 0.10 percent to assume all of the deposits of The Farmers Bank of Lynchburg. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Clayton Bank and Trust agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets.
Customers with questions about today's transaction should call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-774-8035. The phone number will be operational this evening until 9:00 p.m., Central Daylight Time (CDT); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., CDT; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., CDT; on Monday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., CDT; and thereafter from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., CDT. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC's Web site at
The FDIC estimates that the cost to the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $28.3 million. Compared to other alternatives, Clayton Bank and Trust's acquisition was the least costly resolution for the FDIC's DIF. The Farmers Bank of Lynchburg is the 31st FDIC-insured institution to fail in the nation this year, and the third in Tennessee. The last FDIC-insured institution closed in the state was Tennessee Commerce Bank, Franklin, on January 27, 2012.

30 -- #5 in Georgia

Fidelity Bank, Atlanta, Georgia, Assumes All of the Deposits of Security Exchange Bank, Marietta, Georgia

June 15, 2012
Media Contact:
Greg Hernandez (202) 898-6984
Cell: (202) 340-4922

Security Exchange Bank, Marietta, Georgia, was closed today by the Georgia Department of Banking and Finance, which appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. To protect the depositors, the FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement with Fidelity Bank, Atlanta, Georgia, to assume all of the deposits of Security Exchange Bank.
The two branches of Security Exchange Bank will reopen on Monday as branches of Fidelity Bank. Depositors of Security Exchange Bank will automatically become depositors of Fidelity Bank. Deposits will continue to be insured by the FDIC, so there is no need for customers to change their banking relationship in order to retain their deposit insurance coverage up to applicable limits. Customers of Security Exchange Bank should continue to use their existing branch until they receive notice from Fidelity Bank that it has completed systems changes to allow other Fidelity Bank branches to process their accounts as well.
This evening and over the weekend, depositors of Security Exchange Bank can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards. Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.
As of March 31, 2012, Security Exchange Bank had approximately $151.0 million in total assets and $147.9 million in total deposits. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Fidelity Bank agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets.
The FDIC and Fidelity Bank entered into a loss-share transaction on $102.8 million of Security Exchange Bank's assets. Fidelity Bank will share in the losses on the asset pools covered under the loss-share agreement. The loss-share transaction is projected to maximize returns on the assets covered by keeping them in the private sector. The transaction also is expected to minimize disruptions for loan customers. For more information on loss share, please visit:
Customers with questions about today's transaction should call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-760-3641. The phone number will be operational this evening until 9:00 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time (EDT); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Monday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., EDT; and thereafter from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., EDT. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC's Web site at
The FDIC estimates that the cost to the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $34.3 million. Compared to other alternatives, Fidelity Bank's acquisition was the least costly resolution for the FDIC's DIF. Security Exchange Bank is the 30th FDIC-insured institution to fail in the nation this year, and the fifth in Georgia. The last FDIC-insured institution closed in the state was Covenant Bank & Trust, Rock Spring, on March 23, 2012.

29 - #4 in Florida