A Safe Level of Radiation

A Safe Level of Radiation – Updated
David Schlecht

Safe Level?

I’ve been hearing this term on our worthless American corporate news the past couple weeks and it makes my head want to explode. Either none of the news casters ever went to school or they forgot everything they learned. I also hear them say that the half-life is only some number of days.

To start with, the reason radiation causes cancer along with a whole host of other mutilations is because the nuclear atoms split apart and the components blast through the human body like a hot knife through butter. In the process of blasting through our cells, the electrons destroy parts of the DNA strands in our cells.

So, when the DNA gets mutilated, either the cell dies or it survives with the new defective DNA (mutation). The mutated cell no longer has the ability to self-regulate its growth so it begins to grow unrestrained. Now we have cancer.

So, how many electrons does it take to cause terminal cancer?


One electron hitting the wrong place in a cell and you have cancer.

When scientists say a safe level, they mean statistically safe. In other words, if your chances of getting cancer from a disaster is only 1 in 100,000 then that’s pretty safe. But if there are 100,000 people living in the area, like in Japan, that means that at least one of those people will get cancer even though it’s considered “safe”. You can be that lucky one.

There is no safe level of radiation.

Half Life

The term half-life is the amount of time it takes for only half of the material to lose its radioactivity. This doesn’t mean it’s safe after that time, it means it’s only half as lethal. In other words, it’s still unsafe but it will now only kill half as many people.

Once it’s lost half of it’s poison, it takes another of those half-lives before it loses another half of it’s poison. In other words, it will become half as lethal with the passing of each half life. Using the example of radioactive iodine, the half life is 8 hours. That means that in a population of one million people, if the level of radiation was enough to kill half the population, after eight hours, it would still be strong enough to kill 250,000, and another eight hours later it would kill another 125,000.

Half life is not the end of the disaster, that’s only a fraction of the total time it will take to dissipate.

Remember, there is no safe level of radiation. That’s why we can have cancer even if we don’t get purposely irradiated.

And, even with a half life of eight hours, it can take a long time before the risk becomes low enough to forget.

Update –

Radioactive Iodine has a half-life of 8 days, not 8 hours.

The Wisconsin spirit is spreading

I got this in my inbox today. The Spirit is spreading.

April 4, 2011 is shaping up to be one of the most important progressive days of action in nearly a decade.

It’s the anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., who was killed 43 years ago while traveling to Memphis to stand in solidarity with striking sanitation workers demanding their chance to attain the American Dream.

Now, in response to the new wave of Republican attacks on unions and working people, the entire labor movement has called for a massive national day of protests, vigils, and work site events on April 4. Virtually the entire progressive movement has joined in.

Can you help make next Monday an overwhelming day of solidarity for working people by attending an event in your area? Click here to find the April 4 event closest to you:


Working people in Wisconsin, Ohio, and Indiana have inspired an activist spirit that’s spreading across the country, and this is our chance to keep the momentum going. This is our chance to stand up to the Republicans and demand protection for workers’ rights and the restoration of the American Dream for all of us.

The events are part of “We Are One,” a grassroots effort led by a broad coalition of unions and progressive allies committed to realizing Dr. King’s goal of economic justice for all. The events include actions, teach-ins, work site discussions, vigils, faith events, and more.

You can simply attend an event in your area or if you have creative ideas for an event in a public place like a park, in your work site, a teach-in at a college near you, or even something at your house, you can volunteer to host your own.

We need to keep building our strength until the American Dream can finally be attained by everyone. On April 4, we will keep the momentum going. And we will not stop.

Will you join us?


Poverty or Prosperity

Poverty or Prosperity
David Schlecht

Imagine for a moment, or maybe you don’t even need to imagine, that your employer decided that even though the business was doing good, it was time to cut your wages and improve profits. No better time to take advantage of the times than right now, when people are worried about their jobs.

So your wages have been cut and you can no longer afford to enjoy the lifestyle you’ve grown accustomed to. What do you do?

If you’re a typical American, you’ll look for better work. No one needs to put up with unethical employers. That’s right, you look to bring in more money. When would anyone say, “oh darned, I better sell my house and start living out of a cardboard box?”

No one would, except the mentally challenged.

So, when our country is dealing with insufficient funds, do we just say, “okay, it’s time to move into that third-world-country?” No! Only the mentally challenged would consider that as the first option.

So, why do we Americans ever listen to the Republican party saying that we have to start expecting less? We’ve been doing with less for over 30 years now and it’s time we started demanding more.

What happens to America if the fools get away with convincing us that we need to expect less from our country? America becomes less of a country. It’s the same thing that happens if you choose the cardboard home rather than a better job.

We can’t afford to listen to the Republican failed misconceptions any longer. If we want America to remain strong, if we want to remain a first-world country, we have to act today and say we don’t want the cardboard box.

Will we ever get back to prosperity if we keep expecting less?

Do you want to live in the best country in the world or the cheapest?

It’s Inhumane

I just heard about a horrible Republican bill that could force certain survivors of rape and incest to prove to the IRS that they were assaulted.

Here’s the deal. A new bill would impose tax penalties on small businesses and individuals who buy abortion coverage with their own money – with exceptions only for cases of rape, incest, or when a woman’s life is in danger.

The result is that survivors of rape and incest who seek abortion care could be forced to detail their assaults and provide proof to IRS investigators.

It’s inhumane. So I signed a petition telling Congress to stand up and oppose the anti-choice bill. Can you join me at the link below?



More Swill for the Tea Baggers

More Swill for the Tea Baggers
Captain Jack

You won’t believe the swill the Tea Baggers are being fed. It’s hard to believe that anyone eats this stuff up without checking any of it out, but it’s the only way they can sustain their hatred of America and her principles. Here is the latest email in my inbox.

Sad but true?
Once upon a time the government had a vast scrap yard in the middle of a desert.  Congress said, “Someone may steal from it at night.”  So they created a night watchman position and hired a person for the job.

Then Congress said, “How does the watchman do his job without instruction?”  So they created a planning department and hired two people, one person to write the instructions and one person to do time studies.

Then Congress said, “How will we know the night watchman is doing the tasks correctly?”  So they created a Quality Control department and hired two people, one to do the studies and one to write the reports.

Then Congress said, “How are these people going to get paid?”  So they created two positions, a time keeper and a payroll officer, then hired two people.

Then Congress said, “Who will be accountable for all of these people?”

So they created an administrative section and hired three people, an Administrative Officer, an Assistant Administrative Officer, and a Legal Secretary.

Then Congress said, “We have had this command in operation for one year, and we are $918,000 over budget.  We must cut back.”  So they laid off the night watchman.

NOW slowly, let that sink in.

Quietly, we go like sheep to slaughter.

Does anybody remember the reason given for the establishment of the DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY….. during the Carter Administration?




Didn’t think so!

Bottom line:  We’ve spent several hundred billion dollars in support of an agency…the reason for which not one person who reads this can remember!

Ready??  It was very simple . . . and, at the time, everybody thought it very appropriate.

The Department of Energy was instituted on 8/04/1977 TO LESSEN OUR DEPENDENCE ON FOREIGN OIL.

Hey, pretty efficient, huh???


A little over 33 years ago, 30% of our oil consumption was foreign imports.  Today 70% of our oil consumption is foreign imports.

Ah, yes — the good old Federal bureaucracy!!


Hello!!  Anybody Home?

This is currently circulating  on the net. I think it proves the point quite well that this Nation needs to get a grip on SPENDING and suggest that you disregard any “interior” rules that may impede cutting Obamacare funding and other projects that are hidden inside the CR and get on with the job of saving the country. In my opinion. the American public is sick & tired of the cavalier approach that you, are Employees take regarding the job we elected you to do. Oh yes, just how much have you cut from Congressional spending? And how much of a reduction in salary have you taken as Speaker? Congressional pay, staff &staff salary has been a ongoing subject with me from the begining of the ecnomic downturn and you will continue to hear from me until a decrease is made; ask Dean Heller, my Congressman, he is aware of my efforts. You may also  hear from other northern Nevada TPers about this. as a SocSec. recipient, I also see no problem with the government shutting down for a period of time. To Quote Ronald Reagan: Government is not the solution, Goverment is the problem! So lets try to put in at least 4 full days a week and stop posturing and get on with some positive,productive labor that will reduce the burden on the American TAX PAYER regardless of whose entitlement (betcha its not constituinal) is skewered.

The first things that pops into my mind when I read this is that they’re asking tea baggers if they know what the government is supposed to do. Really? The Tea Baggers? They have no clue what America is even about. They don’t even know which way is up. ‘They don’t even know which party is the party of the people and which party is the party of the greedy, and you’re asking them something about the government?

To start with, it’s obviously not true, but it begins by saying it is. Now for the average American, I realize just because it says it’s true, they will know better. But for a Tea Bagger, you can bet they think it’s true. Why else would they be voting against their own best interests?

But let’s get to the point about the Department of Energy. Does anyone remember what the inflation of the 70s was all about? That’s when OPEC started manipulating the price of oil. The price of gas tripled and there were serious gas shortages. With the price of shipping going up, the price of everything went up.

President Carter decide to do something about it. He started many programs to cut our dependence on oil. He even installed solar panels on the White House. Incidentally, the solar panels were promptly removed after a Republican president moved in and most of the programs were under funded or polluted with cronies from the oil industry by the Republicans.

Here’s what Carter said: Beginning this moment, this nation will never use more foreign oil than we did in 1977 — never.

So, why did we fail in our quest to become oil independent by the year 2000? Was it because we spent too much money trying? Was it because it was a stupid idea? Was it because it’s not our government’s role? No, it was because we let the Republicans get in power and they destroyed any hopes we had of getting out from under the thumb of the oil tycoons, you know, like the Koch brothers who fund and control the tea baggers.

So, what is the solution according to the Tea Baggers? Shut down the government and quit trying. Tuck our tail between our legs and act like we’ve been beaten.

Really? Is that any way to act like an American? If anything, we need to get serous about this disaster and that means start funding the agencies that we need to help us get it fixed and that means we have to quit voting for Republicans who put oil industry stooges in our Energy Department.

I’m sure that a Tea Bagger will refuse to remember, but it wasn’t that long ago that Bush and Cheney held a meeting to lay out our country’s energy goals for the Bush presidency and guess what. They invited no one but the oil tycoons. Do you have any doubt why the Department of Energy never did anything during the Republican years?

So, if you’re a Tea Bagger, you’ll vote Republican and wonder why your country is going to pot and then believe the Koch brothers when they tell you it’s all the Democrats’ fault.

Ah to be a Tea Bagger.


The Real Tea Party

Captain Jack

Just got this in my email. This is from the Tea Party. It’s quite disgusting to see so many Americans intent on attacking America’s president and the workers and middle class. Just read this.

Dear Friends,

We’re engaged on many fronts in the political battle with Barack Obama and his union allies in Wisconsin and many other states across America.  As you heard today, an activist judge played the role Obama wanted and blocked Gov. Walker’s new collective bargaining law.

And a new poll finds Gov. Walker’s opponents trying to mobilize the public against him.  So we need you to help in 2 important ways:

1. Vote for Gov. Walker in this new Journal Times Poll – CLICK HERE TO VOTE

2. Help us fight back against the mob tactics of the Obama campaign team and organized labor unions – and make the most generous contribution you can afford to the Tea Party Express.

If you can afford a larger contribution of $100, $250, $500, $1,000 or more, then please – do your part to show the Left that their efforts will only embolden us even more!

You can contribute any amount up to the maximum allowed limit of $5,000.  And since we’re in a new election cycle, those of you who had previously “maxed out” are once again able to contribute as much as you’d like – all the way up to that $5,000 maximum.

To contribute, just click the button below:

As always, if you prefer, you may also make a contribution via U.S. mail, by sending a check to:

Tea Party Express

That’s right, word for word how it was sent. Let me repeat, “We’re engaged on many fronts in the political battle with Barack Obama…”

These people are in a battle with the representative of the majority of America. What does that make them? Well, beyond the obvious such as ignorant, naive, confused, there is the very real aspect of being against everything America stands for. These people are plain and simple, anti-American.

They want to stop the “mob tactics”. Really? You mean like Democracy? These people are being asked to donate money to fight against workers in Wisconsin. Now that’s pretty darned disgusting.

We have a very sick cult in America being blinded and led by billionaires who are out to destroy our democracy and steal what’s left of our American Dream.

Declaring War

Updated –

Matthew K.

If you read the US constitution, you’ll quickly learn that it is illegal for the president to declare war except in cases of imminent threats.

It is Congress’ responsibility to debate and declare war.

This is for a good cause. Our founding fathers didn’t want a KING declaring war.

But, when the Republican House of Representatives gathered last week they should have been doing the work of the country but were instead discussing and passing anti-American bills like the defunding of America’s constitutionally guaranteed free press.

Got that?

When you put the Republicans in charge, what do they do for America? Destroy it. What do they do to fulfill their obligations as far as war goes? Did they even discuss Libya? They ignore it and then attack the president for having to step in and do their job.

Instead of discussing things important to America, they’re busy passing bills to defund NPR and Women’s health.

Why does anyone still vote Republican?


Update: For emergency purposes, the War Powers Act allows for the president to initiate military action as long as Congress is notified within 48 hours and the act only allows for 60 days before military operations must stop. Obama has notified Congress and the 60 day clock is ticking.

Does Supply Drive an Economy or Does Demand?

Does Supply Drive an Economy or Does Demand?
David Schlecht

We’ve discussed supply side economics many times on this blog and there are countless websites that compare the two economic models, Keynes vs Friedman. But this time I’m going to add a bit of history to the discussion. After all, if we can’t learn from our mistakes, we’re doomed to repeat them, and repeating them we are.

Supply Side Economics

Probably the best way to describe Supply Side Economics is Voodoo economics. This is the idea that if you give money to the rich, they will hire people and pay a good wage and the heavens will open and the angles will sing and leprechauns will dance. It’s also referred to as trickle-down economics.

In other words, people will run out and buy just because the stores are full.

Keynesian Economics

This is the old model of economics where demand drives the economy. In other words, when people have money they will buy.

Now this is obviously just broad strokes and there is a whole lot more involved in each of these models of economics. You may find yourself interested enough to learn economics and get into the nuts and bolts of these, but this is as technical as I plan to get.

Alright, so here’s the little bit of history I promised you. Neither of these perspectives of economics is new. Since the beginning of economic times, the concept of supply and demand has been the fundamental core of the study of economics.

However, back in the early days of America, the concept of unfettered free trade was the approach the government took and this freed up the companies to be as greedy and they could. This allowed America to become quite wealthy, or at least our wealthy became wealthy.

Of all the leading countries, we were becoming the most wealthy. This seemed to convince many people that if a little free is good, oh my gosh, totally free trade must be the be-all end-all of wealthy. So, in the late 1800s and early 1900s, America decided to pull all the plugs and let the rich get as rich as they wanted.

So by the 1920s we saw the roaring 20s when the wealthy were insane with their greed and wealth. At lease back then, they were smart enough to protect our industries through tariffs.

Then, the big crash.

Following the Great Depression, many economist admitted that the whole idea of completely unregulated greed was bad for America. At this time, Keynes came back to the idea that maybe really, demand drives the economy. This wasn’t the first time economics thought of this, but it was back in vogue.

Then, about 50 years ago, Friedman brought back the greed and supply side economics.

So, fast-forward to today and we’re all the rage back into supply-side economics and unfettered free trade. Of course, we’re also seeing the return of the economics of the Great Depression.

When will we learn from history? When we start exposing the idiots who keep pushing failed economic policies on us. When we eject the same people who got us in the First Republican Great Depression. The Republicans.

Unfettered Free Trade doesn’t work. All it does is impoverish a nation and make a handful of greedy people insanely rich.

Free trade doesn’t work.

Supply Side Economics don’t work. It’s a myth.

Voodoo Economics always brings disaster. Read your history.


Japan’s Disaster

Japan’s Disaster
David Schlecht

We, at Just Say Why, offer our condolences to all those affected by this awful disaster while at the same time express hope that America can learn from your hardships.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to you.

For a good list of possible ways to help with the relief effort, go to Huffington Post.

[poll id=”68″]

Nuclear Industry Uncertainty

Nuclear Industry Uncertainty
David Schlecht

This was the title of an article in the New York Times.

Really? How can there be any uncertainty? It’s time for America to retire this failed industry. It doesn’t work. It’s time to cut our losses and start shutting down these poisonous deathtraps before we have the same news stories about American reactors exploding.

Shut down the nuclear power industry and start today.

I Miss Ron

Dave Speck

I saw a bumper sticker on a truck, today, that said, “I Miss Ron”, with a picture of Ronald Reagan.

How very sad that the Republican party has been so successful at turning this absolute failure of a president into a hero. The man said in one breath how important trade unions are and then started the outright attack on labor.

The man who rose taxes six times on the middle class and started the downfall that we now find ourselves at the bottom of.

We all need to go out and read the book, “Tear Down This Myth“.


How’s That Hopey Changy Thing Working for Ya?

Dave Speck

I spotted a bumper sticker saying this today and had the chance to park next to the vehicle and talk with the driver.

I said, well, let me list the issues:

  1. No more attacks on the World Trade Center. No 3,000 fatalities dues to lack of interest
  2. No more illegal wars
  3. We’ve stopped the second Republican Great Depression
  4. No more drilling permits for British Petroleum to drill in the Gulf of Mexico
  5. We’re finally doing something about our broken corrupt medical industry and medical insurance industry.

So, all in all, I’m ecstatic with our whole Hopey Changy thing, thanks for asking.

Still, we all admit, we’re nowhere near as far along as we should be or as far as we would be if the Republicans hadn’t been obstructing everything we’re trying to do to fix their mess.

It’s hard to realize how far we’ve come until we actually sit down and compare where we are with where we were.

The Hopey Changy thing is going great, thank you very much.


Why is the Media Downplaying Madison?

Why is the Media Downplaying Madison?
Captain Jack

Why is the billion dollar corporate media downplaying the 100,000 person rally going on in Wisconsin? You would think they have a personal interest in keeping the middle class uninvolved. Maybe they’re afraid we’ll start demanding that they pay their fair share.

If this was a rally of Tea Baggers, there wouldn’t be any room in their programming to cover Japan but since it’s only the middle class…

Here is what it looks like from CNN’s coverage:

Why is CNN trying to downplay the WI rally?
Wisconsin Rally according to CNN

And this is what it actually looked like:

What the rally really looks like
The actual size of the march on Madison


What Entitlements

What Entitlements
Captain Jack

We hear in the press constantly telling us about how bad it is for people to feel entitled to government benefits. Well, that’s not really correct, we’re fed a constant supply of propaganda how entitlements for the poor and middle class are bad but the rich are entitled.

For example, we’re told our whole lives how it’s bad to be on Welfare. It’s bad to be on Unemployment Benefits, it’s bad to be sucking off the system by taking Social Security or Medicare or Medicaid.

Now we’re being told it’s bad to expect the EPA to be protecting our environment or it’s bad for the Labor Relations board to be protecting labor or how it’s bad for the FDA to be protecting us from poisonous drugs or food. We should just stop feeling so entitled.

We shouldn’t feel entitled to a free press, like NPR or PBS so let’s stop funding them and lets shut them down, we shouldn’t have people entitled to get help registering to vote, so let’s shutdown ACORN.

The list goes on endlessly. Every effort we the people put into getting benefits for our tax dollars, the billionaires put more effort into convincing us how we’re not entitled to expect anything for our tax dollars.

But, you never hear the millionaire news casters on the billion dollar news organizations telling us how they’re not entitled to the benefits they get from OUR tax dollars. You never hear the oil industry like the Koch brothers telling us how they’re not entitled to billions of dollars in tax give aways. Remember? Exxon paid noting in American taxes and even got millions of dollars back in a tax refund last year because of the welfare for the wealthy.

You never hear the billion dollar assembly line farm industry saying how they’re not entitled to billions of dollars in farm subsidies. I guess welfare for the rich is okay but we little people shouldn’t be ENTITLED to anything from our tax dollars.

The sad part is that we believe this propaganda. We’re letting them get away with stealing from us.

It’s time we got back to realizing that WE ARE ENTITLED!

We’re entitled to a decent wage. We’re entitled to unionize. We’re entitled to expect to a fair share of the profits from our labors. All our country’s profits are going to the billionaires. Welfare for the billionaires.

We’re entitled to expect our government to represent us and not the multinational corporations. We’re entitled to expect the rich to pay their fair share.

We’re entitled to expect to get some retirement money back from the Social Security we’ve been paying into our whole lives. We’re entitled to unemployment check when we’re unemployed after paying into it our whole lives. No more welfare for the wealthy.

We are entitled.

Ensign to Quit

Ensign to Quit

Matthew K.

Wonderful news, Nevada. Your unethical, slimy, cheating, lying, Republican Ensign is quitting.

The bad news, Nevada, is that you weren’t smart enough to vote him out.

When will Nevada wake up and realize that the Republicans are destroying your state?

You’re last in everything. Ever wonder why? Get rid of the crooks. Don’t just be lazy and wait for them to quit or dies of old age.

Who are you going to replace him with? The next unethical, dishonest Republican ? Dean Heller? The Chicken Lady? Sharron Angle? Really?


The Demise of the Democratic Party

The Demise of the Democratic Party
David Schlecht

The billionaires and multinational corporations own the Republican party and they are doing everything they can to destroy the Democratic party, everything from destroying Acorn, who helped register real Americans, and helped them get out and vote, to attacking trial lawyers, the only legal profession to donate to the Democratic party, and they’re even trying to destroy the workers, the unions, and the middle class.

But, the Democratic party has held together because it is the only true party that represents the people, it represents the poor, the underprivileged, the working class, the average American.

No, all the underhanded and deceitful attacks won’t destroy the Democratic party as quickly as they will destroy themselves.

The Democratic party is losing touch with its base and is abandoning the progressive principles that have made the party strong. Today’s Democratic party is partly owned by blue dog democrats (aka corporate democrats), partly controlled by conservatives who support anti-American principles like indefinite imprisonment without trial, support giving tax breaks to the billionaires and then cutting services for the poor to pay for them.

No, the liars and billionaires won’t destroy the Democratic party. The Democratic party will destroy themselves if they can’t get back to their progressive roots and get back to representing the people.

Want to see the Democratic party strong, again? Stop the free trade disasters, increase services for the people, and demand fair taxes on the rich.

Anything less will make this a single-party country. Sure, they’ll keep both the names so as to fool the fools but it’ll be the same old party no matter if it’s Democrat of Republican.

How can we Americans save our country? Get out there and get active. Talk to your friends and neighbors. Call and write your representatives, write letters to the newspapers, and more than anything else, turn off your network news. The only news that is trustworthy is locally owned.

Time is running out, America.

What The Tea Party Wants

What The Tea Party Wants
Dave Speck

It is very hard not to hear the voices of the billionaires behind every single tea party request.

The Tea Party Requests

  • Fewer regulations on the oil companies
  • Drill baby drill
  • Lower taxes on the billionaires
  • Welfare for Billionaires
  • Lower benefits for the middle class
  • Smaller government
  • Kill the unions

… and on and on it goes.

Who Votes Against Their Best Interests?

It takes a real fool to be out there chanting against the middle class and against the workers and against regulating big business and against fair taxes on the rich, against their own best interests.

But, the Republican party if full of fools.

So, tea party, what, exactly, do you want, other than what the billionaires want?

You want smaller government? Tell me what small government country you want to be like. Somalia, maybe? Haiti? There isn’t a single one out there I want to be like. Tell me what big government country you don’t want to be like. The bigger the government, the bigger the benefits to the tax payers. Of course, we all want to clean out waste from our government but making it smaller isn’t the solution. It only helps the billionaires.

So, tea party followers, please, tell me, what do you want that the billionaires haven’t told you to want?

Who Fixed the Last Great Depression?

During the last Great Depression, America voted for progressives to fix the country and Germany voted for a conservative, Hitler. Who are you voting for? Since I know that you will refuse to admit it to yourself, I’ll help you out. You’re voting for the conservatives.