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Hieronymus Bosch General Hospital

8:30 am in Art, Culture, Economy by marymccurnin

Last Thursday I received a call from my daughter. She is four and a half months pregnant and had started spotting. It wasn’t the first time but the worry that it engendered in everyone sent her off to the emergency room at Marin General Hospital. I got in my car and made the trip through the rain and arrived at the hospital around nine in the evening.

I was worried that my daughter was not ok. I pulled the car into the dark, wet parking lot and took five minutes to put my pretend brave face on. I walked into an emergency room that was slammed with patients. A child sat in a chair holding his broken arm. People were scattered around the waiting room in various seating arrangements. Wheelchairs held the weary and broken. There were probably forty people in the place. It was like purgatory. Waiting to be seen. Waiting to go home.

I spied Amy’s boyfriend, Rico. Next to him sat his father. I recognized him from pictures I had seen at the couples apartment. Rico introduced us and we hugged. He seemed like a very nice person. I sat between them and Rico updated me. Amy was in a room behind the “do not enter” double doors being attended to by nurses, doctors, scanners, readers of scans, phlebotomists, and more.

The double doors opened and an attendant wheeled a young man out into the waiting room. He looked tired and had a badly swollen leg. I took the opportunity to slip past them and into the back. I walked down the hall and found Amy in Room 10. As soon as I saw her I felt she and the baby were going to be fine. The first thing I said to her was “You look beautiful”. She smiled and said “Thanks, Mom”. Read the rest of this entry →

Occupy Oakland Wednesday Afternoon

8:36 am in Demonstrations, Economy, Protest, Uncategorized by marymccurnin

My daughter, her boyfriend and I went to OccupyOakland yesterday in the afternoon. There were thousands of people in attendance. It was a peaceful and very diverse group of folks. We saw teachers, nurses, students, unemployed, religious groups, union members, and many many more.

We left about two o’clock. Read the rest of this entry →

I Will Lead.

10:17 am in Art, Economy, Energy, Politics by marymccurnin

I wish I had done it but I didn’t. My friend, Dave Boles, made this for the magazine, Primal Urge. It was just too perfect for this very special thursday when our president will give his speech on JOBS.


11:37 am in Art, banality of evil, Economy, jerks, Politics, Uncategorized by marymccurnin

You can always count on the poets to come through. This is by my friend, Dave Boles.

HOMAGE TO A WORD (for Meri St. Mary)
by Dave Boles

in the 60s one word
became symbolic
of American frustration
with government greed
the corporate
fat cats
were seen as true evil
and the word was pure
one word
four syllables
defined a country
in two
the word had beauty
as it rolled through
the air waves
of large cities
and colleges
bright minds
our mysteries
so began
the cry
that would define
a sad era
so began
the death
of the word


in the 70s the man
who was not
a crook
by his own admission
who became
our president
who had
a vision
to free the stranglehold
that was
spoke the words
in earnest
for the very
first time
though they would be
by all his
corrupt sickness
but the words
were officially
in earnest
by our leaders
in congress
one word
five syllables
would define
a generation
and the word
was pure
as it rolled
off the
of the leaders
of a nation
though the word
was alien
to the people
the workers
but to bankers
and lawyers
it became their new
one word
five syllables
as they introduced
to all
a brand new word
it was


the successor
to the president
who reeked
of evil
the one who
in time
who stumbled
and caused
much political
whose claim to fame
is not much at all
he quietly
secured the passage
of the first real change
that would cripple
a nation
through the media
the bankers
the corporate greed monsters
would begin to tell
a confused
senseless people
that the word was useful
it would increase
their money
as the media
the true nature
and intentions
of a political body
who chanted the mantra
one word
five syllables
of a land set free
by a new rising body
forged of media
who chose politicians
that would heed
their decrees
and the word was
as it rolled
off the tongue
and the word
caught on
by enlightened
as they shared in the


more leaders
would follow
both political
presidents striving
for necessary freedom
to allow our country
to soar
as bright eagle
unencumbered by government
unrestricted by laws
unfettered free trade
especially transportation
how could an eagle
with so many restraints
this became the question
that became the argument
of a media bought off
by their rich
corporate masters
the answer
was simple
a battle cry
it became
one word
five syllables
the word was so easy
the people adapted
they began to believe
and the word it
off of all
peoples tongues
as the word
was pure
as a nation
while bankers
sat smiling
all the while nodding
as a nation began


they rocked through the 80s
overturning decades
of financial progress
in return
for promises
of theories
their simplistic
promises absurd
the media
now green lighted
all carried the message
regulation was terrible
horrible we say
how can there be
a burgeoning economy
with such restraints
plotted against it
with evil regulations
and government control
and the people
all bought it
their color tv’s
delivered them all
to a land filled with promises
while all around them crumbled
but the media
now bought
run by corporate masters
would not show the crumbling
of a nation
and they heightened the cry
for a nationwide
and the nation
it shouted


1976 – Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act

1977 – Emergency Natural Gas Act

1978 – Airline Deregulation Act

1978 – National Gas Policy Act

1980 – Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act

1980 – Motor Carrier Act

1980 – Regulatory Flexibility Act

1980 – Staggers Rail Act

1982 – Garn–St. Germain Depository Institutions Act

1982 – Bus Regulatory Reform Act

1989 – Natural Gas Wellhead Decontrol Act

1992 – National Energy Policy Act

1996 – Telecommunications Act

and the mother of them all
nearly three decades to achieve

1999 – Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act

the Financial Services Modernization Act
America had
been set free
and people rejoiced
at their incredible
good fortune
for their cries
had been answered
there had been


academics rejoiced
bankers sat smiling
politicians counted money
people waved the flag
Americans in total
danced oblivious
joyous dances
money was flowing
streets were paved
business was booming
our leaders were hero’s
with all the money flowing
even buses on time running
there was only
one word
for this glorious
one word


then big Ken Lay
and his henchman, Skilling
took all Americans
for a Mr. Toads wild ride
they looted and destroyed
while California lay burning
they brought a once
sound economy
down to its knees
their traders made millions
on an energy shortage
of corporate fabrication
poor Gray Davis
removed by irate peoples
replaced by Ahnold
by Lay, Skilling and Fastow
though J. Clifford Baxter
did the honorable thing
he ate a bullet
to clear his conscious
leaving his blood
as witness
to the corporate greed
of a new generation
that bellowed the words
of a sickness
that run rampant
throughout our great
and the sickness
had a name
it was


world leaders smirked
powerful men chuckled
all major bankers
money people drivers
sat on sideline
without a blink
of one saddened eye
they moved to the next
greed fest crisis
immune from a conscious
Stanley Milgram was right
they plundered as Vikings
our rich
till no more money
was left in their coffers
the banks had run dry
by their own foul submissions
to a culture enraptured
with greed and corruption
all the while shouting
much beating of drums
the evil amongst us
can be cured don’t you see
and politicians shuffled
the media ran snippets
of a utopian world
where all could own housing
and politicians
and bankers
still cried through the media
to a debt weary public


one word
five syllables
it simply rolls
off the tongue
mass people are yelling
brothers turn on themselves
republicans are evil
democrats are dupes
with pointing of fingers
much crisis has risen
and all those rich bankers
with their back pocket politicians
look on from the side line
all the while nodding
much praise do they have
for the fine work evolved
over four long
forty years did it take
an economy they crippled
with the ridiculous
of deregulation
now peoples in ruin
no pension
no money
no jobs
no health care
no food for
their babies
no education
for the masses
unless you have money
you are screwed
as a human
in this
but then out of
the chaos
comes a word
worth repeating
of all oppressed
all of time
it’s a word
of a people
pushed to the brink
of extinction
with nothing to lose
they chant


My Work Here Is Done!

10:35 am in banality of evil, Economy, Politics, Uncategorized by marymccurnin

The Check Is Not In The Mail

11:58 am in banality of evil, Democratic Party, Economy, jerks, Politics, Uncategorized by marymccurnin

On Monday, Obama sauntered up to the microphone and spoke sweetly to the American people. He blithely suggested that the Social Security checks for August may not be going out. OK, he said other things, too. I really didn’t listen. I find it hard to listen to this person. He usually says very little anyway. He has NO moral compass. He is a NeoLiberal. And I don’t know if anyone else has noticed, but he is boring to boot. The phrase “banality of evil” comes to mind.

I will stop right here. I haven’t written a diary in a while. I used to spend a lot of time researching, thinking, and trying to put my best and most logical foot forward. Ain’t happening anymore. I am tired and can no longer make myself write either brilliant diaries or highly cogent comments. Please, forgive me.

One thing I know about Obama is that if he has mentioned something in passing he is making sure it will happen. He has set up the framework. If those social security checks don’t go out, how many won’t eat. How many businesses will go under? How many will die from lack of medication? How many more homes will be caused to go into default? And Obama will use this situation to cast himself in the roll of victim.

Obama is not just a disappointment, he is a danger. He is the most blatantly dishonest person I have ever witnessed in public life. We are in more trouble than we were in the Bush years because we are dealing with a heartless shape shifter who has taken us and the world economy to the very brink of disaster.

What will happen now that bin Laden has been killed?

9:09 am in banality of evil, BP oil disaster, Economy, Politics by marymccurnin

What will happen to Bradley Manning now that America has killed Osama bin Laden? Will Mr. Manning be seen as a partner in crime with bin Laden?

What will happen to the fight for Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid? Will the money be needed to protect Americans from the vengence of Al Qaeda?

What will happen to the Gulf of Mexico now that Osama bin Laden has been killed? Will we need to drill for oil at home because of the threat in the Middle East?

What will happen to the freedoms that have been eroded for the sake of security now that Osama bin Laden has been killed? Are we safer? Can we be free again now?

What will happen to the little children in America and the Middle East who continue to go hungry now that Osama bin Laden has been killed? Will they be fed or will the resources be needed to protect the world?

What will happen to Obama’s chances of re-election now that Osama bin Laden has been killed?

What will happen to the bankers that destroyed the world economy now that Osama bin Laden has been killed?

What will happen?

CA Unions & Others Demonstrate In Support Of WI Protestors @ Capital

2:29 pm in Art, Economy, Politics, Uncategorized, Unions, Wisconsin Demonstrators by marymccurnin

Saturday I went to a demonstration at the capital in Sacramento in support of the Wisconsin Protestors. There were probably a couple of thousand people. Rather than tell you about it I have chosen to post photos.

(more after jump) . . . Read the rest of this entry →

The 21st Century American Version of Democracy

2:52 pm in banality of evil, Economy, jerks, Politics, Uncategorized by marymccurnin

Many of us need to fly. If we fly today and don’t want to be exposed to radiation then we must endure molestation.

If we want to take the train it costs more in time and money then the plane. 49 hours and 41 minutes to get from Sacramento to New Orleans via Chicago. And it costs over $500 one way. The bus is about the same price but only takes 30 hours. Flying costs around $400 round trip.

The banksters are refusing to cram down the mortgages that are underwater. More people are walking away from their homes making the housing crisis worse. The government is aiding and abetting the banksters. The no cram down rule is pretzel logic. The value of homes continues to go down.

Fifty nine million Americans don’t have health insurance. Our economy cannot compete with other economies due to the always escalating cost of health care and health insurance. If we fixed this we could compete. Never mind that it would be the kind and moral thing to do and save lives.

We elect politicians to fix our problems. They don’t listen. The Citizens United SCOTUS decision handed our democracy over to the corporations. To vote or not to vote, that is the question. The answer is that our votes have been neutered by the most radical supreme court in one hundred and fifty years.

Too big to fail banks have been bailed out. The crooks who run the banking system should be in jail. Since they are not then we will have to bail out the too big to fail banks again.

As a country we invade other countries in the guise of self protection; killing thousands of innocent people for our own profit and greed……..

Unfortunately, I could go on and on with this diary. Everyone reading this knows every bit of it. But I just cannot get the image out of my head of a hysterical three year old little girl climbing up her mother while a TSA agent terrorizes her body and soul.  Is the TSA’s need to touch the most vulnerable among us on their genitals the tipping point? If not, my God, what is?

My Neighborhood on 9-11

4:28 pm in Art, Culture, Economy, Education, Uncategorized by marymccurnin

My husband and I moved to Rancho Cordova, CA after living the previous 13 years in either Sonoma or Marin Counties. It was like converting from Buddhism to Born Again Christianity. It was unsettling, interesting and I had a lot to learn. Also, it was not long after 9-11 and this made the contrast even more stark. A year or so after the move Dan Lungren became my representative in the House. Scary. The saving grace was the fact that our house is on the American River.

As the years ticked on the neighborhood became more and more gentrified. The strip malls were cleaned up and the funky bars disappeared.

The last of the older residents who had purchased houses when the neighborhood was first built in 1964 began to pass away. Younger more affluent people moved in. The houses where painted Pottery Barn colors and the front doors were modernized. The value of the neighborhood arched up. People had listened well to their faux leader, George II and had roped in their semi-dream homes and had gone shopping.

Now, in a two block radius, I know of five houses in foreclosure. There may be more. The grammar school down the street is closed and all of the teachers have been fired. The green belt behind my house that runs along the American River has no park rangers to protect it. Several nights ago I heard guns shots in the back.

When Obama gave out stimulus money at the beginning of his administration Rancho Cordova fixed the main corridors within the little city’s borders. Now school buses can easily get to schools that no longer exist.

Another recent change is the number of young dads pushing strollers. I suspect they are out of work but their wives are not.

We are moving. Our first choice is Portland. I will miss my neighbors. I will miss the river. I will not miss Dan Lungren.

Below are images I took when we moved to R.C. in March of 2002. None of the houses have flags on them any longer.