Tuesday January 13 | Open Phones

January 12, 2009 at 11:19 am | Posted in Coming Up | 13 Comments

Join us for the first edition of Open Phones for the new year. Call, email or blog with your comments about the stories that have piqued your interest- whether you want to talk about the upcoming Inauguration, New Year’s Resolutions, the Freightliner job cuts, the Panthers or anything else on your mind. We want to hear from you!

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  1. Most people do not understand that the kind of manipulation of the oil market described on 60 Minutes is exactly what happens when you have a completly free, unregulated, market. Enron got the regulations lifted that prevented this kind of speculation and consumers have paid the price ever since.

    During the 1920’s the markets were unregulated and the wealthy regularly colluded to drive up prices, then quickly sell off the stocks, reaping huge profits and bilking small investors. FDR put in regulations to stop this practice of insider trading. Republicans have worked ever since to reverse these regulations and still are arguing against regulation after this latest meltdown.

    Unfortunately too many average Americans do not understand this issue and get bamboozled by the right’s anti-government rhetoric. Until that changes we will continue to go through these kinds of crises.

  2. Is anyone worried that as massive bailouts are used to jolt the economy, that the dollar could collapse and we could experience runaway inflation in the middle of a Depression?

  3. To Jack regarding collapse of USD. I think that is the intent, although not so dramatic. My thoughts are: since they can not lower the price of homes to where the people that own them can pay, they instead intend to create enough inflation that people can pay for the house. Because the amount owed is fixed, it becomes cheaper with inflated dollars.

  4. I feel like we have been sold out. It is the system that is failing all of us.
    We the people have been wearing blinders for way too long!
    Is it too late to fix it all?
    Can’t we just remember that old ad that DECLARED: “GET THE BUMS OUT!… (misquote, but I think U recall)
    The Powers that be have soo minipulated the way big business is done that the hard earned welth of honest peoples of all Nations is hoarded by the greed of “Corporate International” whatever false hidden tax free slush fund for the ones who make NO RULES FOR THEM>
    We need to fire all our leaders local and national, and send the nice folks from our neighborhoods, to represent us, there should be no Millionaires in Washington, No, Lawyers, No Lobiest….
    The restrictions of office should reflect the averages of the populous of the district being represented. DELETE the ELITE!!!
    Thanks,
    Peace,

  5. Well, well, well
    I have had a small Handy Man in Charlotte since 1979 when, I got out of the Marine Corps. It was so obvious seeing the businesses like Real Estate Brokers, Appraisers, Banks have been resorting the values and areas of real estate all over the country.
    Charlotte is PRIME Example of the Re population and removing the undesirables from neighborhoods closest to the business districts.
    Where are all the poor people going?
    The folks who have been systematically Moved by the Long past Due upgrading the neighborhoods, classifying them as Historic, raising value far past the poor peoples ability to pay the new taxes.
    Families being forced out of their homes because they either have lived their too long, you know, lived past the increases of the pensions and savings. Therefore the bankers and government deserved their very last asset! Hell, this is a mid range effect of Population control and conditioning . Not for the GOOD of ALL People! If you don’t have 50k-100k in the bank, Nobody gives you the Credit of being an upstanding individual.
    If you have to protect yourself in a Court and don’t have a high dollar atty. Yer just SCREWED…
    Poor, poor, human rights, anyone remember that Ole Clique, The pursuit of Self-righteousness

    The wealth of Charlotte has been The Elite, Some Judges, Lawyers , Doctors and all Sorts of Wealthy Local and Greedy others. Have and continue the Ole’ Good’ole boy Network, Strong and well continuing to overate life to be unaffordable to the working classes!
    Some of the Largest Evils abusers of this areas people have their Name Smudged over Hospitals, Museums, Stores and other famed locales.

    Vindication, Kinda Like the worship center who’s Pastors Name is the Largest Text on the sign…

  6. in my opinion<
    The Local Government, Ha, what Local government.
    People who Praise Child Molesters, and Crooks, Bob Walton, The good ole Boys.. Ole Sheriff Kidd, The Knox boys n girls. Levine’s, Belks so on and Etcetera !!
    The true Outlaws, Always Run the place!
    HATRED AND BIGOTRY IS ALIVE AND WELL IN CHARLATTE NORFKAROLINA!
    “That’s jus the way it is”!
    Oh, ut oh, I mentioned too many names, Maybe I had better duck.
    Hell, them crooks have been taking all good Honest Hard working peoples of this town, for years!
    This group is just like the so called organized crime, Neighbors, if you will.
    This is a Little Town.

  7. To Phill S:
    RE: Get the bums out, and, where do poor people live.

    I think our politicians, some of whom are honest, are being outsmarted by specialists. That is, big business has so manipulated the way gov’t is done – compared to your assertion that politicians manipulate the way business is done. Greedy business people are smart, sly, and blatant in their assertion that what they do is legal. Their ethics make me sick.

    Where will the poor go? Firstly, while I agree with you in the main, I would refine the thought to include the idea that as long as there is ANY amount of inflation, then the price of a home will go up by the amount of inflation. Thus a home purchased for $45K in 1982 would be worth much more today (guess – inflation only uptick = 50K making home price = $95k?) Nevertheless, that does not answer your question of “where will the poor go?”

    But, the word poor does not cover it for me. I want to know where people making the mean income of charlotte – $40K per year – are supposed to live?

    Truly Phill, what we need are SMALL tract homes, maybe 800 sq ft, on a slab, made of cinder blocks and local materials, on reasonable size lot, for SALE only (not rentable) and costing less than 50K.

    Also: Minimum wage must be $15 per hour with health care like congress gets. YOU HAVE NO RIGHT to hire me, make me work, yet not give me enough money to get health care. That too is business running the government – remember, if I go to hospital emergency room the must by law take me. So, that is a backdoor way of forcing the public to bear the cost of healthcare that employers who want to live in McMansions do not want to pay. Again, greedy, sly, unethical people who blatently think that since they own a truck and a lawnmower, they can pay people poverty wages. Profit is good. However, 40 hours of tough work should get a person off food stamps and make them a respected and solid citizen.

    I could go on but I will stop now.

  8. Mike, I take issue with your remark about where we’d be if Social Security would have been privatized. That hypothetical “any person with an ounce of common sense,” if sufficiently wise and put to the task of creating a partially privatized system (which is what has been generally described), would have structured the “private investment” side of it so that as one approaches retirement age, the investment mix would gradually migrate over to very safe fixed income sources. When one were very near or at retirement, it would be almost fully fixed income. These investments have not taken a big hit in the recent downturn (in my own 401(k)they have held steady or increased slightly). Too many people have had a knee-jerk unfavorable reaction to the idea of a partial private investment system without ever looking at the details of how a proper one would be constructed and operated. It can be done.

  9. Park,
    If you beleive that, Would lend me some money to build a shop, so I can try to support myself. Then my son wouldn’t be pasying all my livung expenses while I wait for Social Security to get to me!
    It is a fasct that The Goverbment is responcible for stealing the assets od SSI and never repairing. This Country, sorta fixws stuff fer awhile!

  10. Bail WHAT !

    This Bail Out: 1 Last Step for Greed, 1 Giant Leap to

    the next Unforeseen Transfers of Wealth away from

    the People to the Real WORLD LEADERS!

    WELL AREN’T WE SMART

    THE ENTIRE WORLD SEEMS TO BE ALIGNED WITH

    THE HAPPENINGS IN THIS FINANCIAL,

    GLOBAL RAPE!

    YUP, WE ARE ALL SITTING BY WATCHING THE

    WORLD POWERS, CHANGE MODES OF

    DIMINISHING THE PEEP HOLES THAT ALLOWED

    AN INKELING OF EVEDENCE AS TO WHOM AND

    WHERE THE WORLDS RESOURSES ARE BEING

    CONTROLLED FROM!

    YES THIS IS IT!

    THERE IS NO ACTUAL TRANSFERS OF WEALTH,

    JUST REFINING THEIR CONTROL!

    CONTROL, YEP I KNOW I’M CRAZY TO SHARE

    SUCH THOUGHTS, BUT, SOME MANIAC NEEDS TO

    SUGGEST THIS TO THE IMAGINATION OF THE

    PEOPLE BEFORE THEY ARE DONE!

    TO START THE ENTIRE GOVERNING OF THIS

    WORLD IS NOT HAPPENING IN NATIONS

    CAPITALS.

    GOVERNMENT IS THE ONLY INCONVIENCE TO

    THE EBTIRE CONTROL OF LIFE ON THIS PLANET.

    WHAT THE HECK I SAY, YEP, FINANCIAL

    ENTITIES SHIFT CLOUT AND POWER = FREEDOM,

    POVERTY, HUMAN RIGHTS, PRESUMED WEALTH!

    ANYTHING THAT HAS TO DO WITH RESOURSES

    IS UNDER THE HAND/THUMB OF THE FEW THE

    POWERFUL THE REAL CEO’S OF THE WORLD!

    THE ENTIRE HISTORY OF THE PLANET IS

    INVOLVED WITH THE SHIFTING OF ESSENTIAL

    RESOURSES.

    PERIOD!

    ‘CEPT HE’D/SHE’D/THEY’D BE PRETTY OLD, I’D

    SUGGEST, THE SAME AUTHORS OF THE WORLDS,

    SPIRITUAL REFERENCES STARTED THE CONTROL,

    SORTING AND DISTRIBUTION OF ALL ESSENTIAL

    COMODITIES!

    NO I’M NOT EVEN SUGGESTING A GREAT

    ORGANIZATION; BUT, A GREAT SECRET

    SOCIETY/AGENDA

    SELFISHNESS, GREED AND OUR EVIL!

    LIKE A THIEF IN THE NIGHT

    QUICKER THAN SHIT

    FASTER THAN FAST

    STAYING ONE STEP AHEAD TO KEEP WHAT IS

    VAST

    YUP OUR ESSENTIAL RESOURSE

    HAVE BEEN DIVIDED UP AMOUNGST

    THOSE IN THE KNOW!

    NOT SUCH A CRAZY IDEA

    THE RICH GET RICHER

    THE POOR GET POORER

    IT IS THE PAWNS, WHO’S FACES SHOW UP IN

    THE FRONT OF GRAND JURY’S

    INDITED FOR SUCH CRIMES AS IMBEZELMENT,

    AND ANY OTHER “WHITE COLAR” LABLE!

    SELFISH GREED IS THE MOTIVATOR.

    CARE, COMPASSION AND INDIVIDUALISM

    ARE THE MARTARS AND VICTIMS.

    QUITE A THEROY THAT WILL REMAIN UNPROVEN!

    GOT ANY INOUT?

    ONLY THE PEOPLE CAN CHANGE THE WORLD; BUT,

    WE DON’T EVEN KNOW WHERE TO START.

    THEROY EXAMPLE:

    IF A GOVERNMENT DON’T PLAY.

    A SIMPLE CORPORATE BOYCOTT COULD

    DISMANTEL THE ENTIRE STRUCTURE OF A

    NATION THAT DID NOT GO ALONG.

    GOVERNMENT AND VISIBLE CORPORATIONS ARE

    THE BEST SMOKE CLOUD, HAVING TO

    PLAY”CHESS” WITH THE ACTUAL FEW IN

    CONTROL

    “THE FEW, THE PROUD, THE SHROUDED”!

    POLITICS IS ONLY A TOOL ANMINISTERED TO

    FOCUS RESPONCIBILITIES FROM THE CAUSE!

    MY QUEST IS FOR AN ANSWER.

    MY FEAR IS THE FACT THAT GREED HAS SHOWN

    ITSELF AS THE ULTIMATE VICTOR OF HUMAN

    RESPONSE.

    CAN ANYONE UNDERSTAND THE

    THEROY/IDEA?

    I TRULY BELIEVE THE WORLD COULD

    EXIST IN HARMONEY IF THE SIMPLE

    RESTRUCTURING OF RESOURESE ( NOT

    WEALTH)

    WOULD APPEAR THE GOAL.

    THE ONLY PROOF I OFFER IS THE

    FACTS,

    THIS HUMAN RACE HAS OVER COME

    EVILS AND SURVIVED.

    GOVERNMENTS ARE THE BOUNDRIES.

    MORAL VALUE IS NEVER CONSIDERED

    BY THE DECIDERS.

    WE THE PEOPLE OF THE WORLD, US

    WHO THINK WE ARE FREE ARE THE

    ENORMOUS OBSTICLE TO WORLD

    PEACE AND HUMAN HARMONY!

    COMMON SENSE, NOW UNCOMMON,

    IS THE ANSWER.

    WE THE PEOPLE OF THE WORLD, NEED

    TO RULE OURSELVES THE WAY

    UNCOMMON PEOPLE HAVE SET

    EXAMPLE!

    MY/OUR/YOUR PLANET HAS

    ENOUGH EVERYTHING FOR

    EVERYBODY;

    EXCEPT COMPASSION.

    WITH MORE THAN ENOUGH

    SELFISH, INCONSIDERATE

    EGO AND GREED.

    HARMONY MAY REALLY BE A

    PRODUCT OF IMMAGINATIONS

    WHERE TO START?

    THE WORLD, MOTHER EARTH,

    THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE IS

    OPENLY BEGGING OUR SIMPLE

    MINDS TO OPEN AND FEEL

    REALITY.

    ARE WE TO BLIND TO SEE!

    All we have to do is look see and do what it is you would have

    done onto you.

    Simple people has been called prophet, lords and saviors for

    the plain truth.

    Wake up world

    Different people are not the enemy!

    The camouflage of the facts is the TRUE ANTI-LIFE

  11. This here Earth is getting ready to rid herself of US!

    It’s not nice to spoil what Mother Nature has made us. See,

    she’s just pushing us into the ocean and until the population is

    manageable for her to keep alive, she’ll calm her Big’ole’self

    down and relax so the few left can feed her properly, or

    we’ll Kill her once and for all.

    If one were to take what is and has happened here on Earth,

    I’d suggest, this may not be the only cycle of elimination this

    here planet has resorted to.

    There is a possibility of the human beings only surviving 10 to

    15 thousand years before the Earth expels them. The few

    who survive are at a remarkable position to turn technology

    around. Instead their greed and human vices take lead, this is

    where they introduced religion, rules social order….

    They miss nurturing Mother Earth to provide and thrive.

    The Sun has all the energy societies of the past needed,

    humans are just to inpatient to let the process grow. Who

    wants to wait 6 hr. for the sun to cook, when they can burn,

    the children, the seeds of Mother Nature, our Trees!

    So on and on, we murder our providers in the name of ,

    What, Progress? More like suicide !

    Any way, Just a thought, to some!

    But you’ll hear her scream if you know how to Listen to the

    sounds of silence, the Voices of the Planets, the energies we

    let slip away!

  12. Tuesday, November 25, 2008
    SOCIAL SERVICES, social services, WORLDWIDE, worldwide.

    Here’s a Point, It is Not just here in the USA

    that all sectors of Social Services have been

    “”Un-Budgeted””,Very Thoroughly !!!

    I mean Dear GOD, why did we even have these surpluses

    in some of these things, Social Security and Mediaid, Even

    Welfare were all doing well!

    That’s when the trouble Started, Like Usual With Our

    Government!! Just as soon as it going Great,

    The Politicians to misappropriate the Funds with all sorts

    of Promises to repay, Well; NOT, one bit has been and it is not

    the Fault of the American Citizen, their Reps have been

    Hob Kbobing with the Evils and Powers , leaning our wealth

    behind as payment for their allowing us,

    The USA to be sold to the LOWEST BIDDERS!

    Why Aren’t we down sizing the Federal Off Shore Budgets,

    everything FROZE or REDUCED from the Present budgets.

    Turning US Bases Overseas into JOINT Operations Between

    Host Country, Or if Possible to run Cheaper

    w/Less Man power and Proper Planning.

    Technology. technology, technology!!!!

    No to all the freakin Critics, this is not Political

    Socialism, or State welfare.

    It is common decency, only pure Hatred would object to Caring

    for Our Fellow Country Men and Women First and Foremost!

    There is no need to Change the World,

    This Whole Mess is WAY TOO EASY

    IT won’t take a Genius to repair the Hole in the Head

    Of WASHINGTON DC.

    Gim’me a week’er two askin them Government Officials

    question about the REAL Figures, Not the Faux Public info, LO

    Ha, ha, ha!

    Just a week to prove Them There Guys

    and Gals Upon Their Hill Ain’t doing; Nope, Not One thing for

    you and I !

    If ya Don’t Believe Me Ask Me, I’ll Tell Ya!

    Bringing me to feel a National Over Haul is Warranted, Needed

    Urgently, Possible to sort us out of This Failure.

    Butt, Not on the Mind of those who have been the Government

    Way, 30 years Too LONG!!!

  13. Phil S.- I’d like to meet and talk about how people like us can contribute to a better life for working people. Man, Mike’s show must have been a brain laxative for you. You really let it out. Istrongly agree that pirates are in charge from bottom to top.

    Elizabeth knows her history and ain’t afraid to tell it. I admire clever writers like her.

    Don Saelzler’s views on inflation broadened my perspective. My mom bought a house in 1960 for $11K that is now worth at least $100K even after the downturn. My brothers and I have put work and money in it, but the inflation while she was paying for it made the $65 a month payments easier. Still I wish it weren’t in an “historic area” where it is over-taxed and subject to unreasonable controls and speculation. To us it was only the place we lived, but now the government and real estate are messing with my poor old mom all the time.
    I had been mainly concerned with our international debt but Don brought me back to earth.
    I agree with many of his sentiments about housing for people and living waged jobs.

    Park Waldrop sounds like an investment advisor from before the crash. Now if you’re 65 the rule is, whatever you had in stocks and futures, 65% is gone. Park is pumping a dry well right now.
    My prejudice is that capitalism is unmanageable above human scale, that anything larger than a one community enterprise usually becomes a social crime. I like the idea of worker owned and managed enterprises as have worked in other countries.

    I hope some of you will write on the water Cooler blog. Just put in Watercooler@WFAE and register (I’ve had no resulting commercial emails or mailings or calls so they don’t sell your information.) Then you can get in a conversation or submit an essay to the blog. You’re smart. You’ll sort it out. I look forward to seeing your names there.


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