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Hot Coffee reveals the Capitalist threat to all aspects of Democracy

My wife and I watched an award winning documentary Thursday night (September 4, 2014). It was called “Hot Coffee: Is Justice Being Served?” The DVD for the documentary was released November 1, 2011, and Amazon sells the DVD for more than $24.00, but you may be able to watch it free on YouTube or from HBO for a lot less.

This is what I learned: if you don’t want Bill Gates, the Walton family or the Koch brothers—for instance—ruling America instead of the elected representative of the people, I urge you not to make the mistake that capitalism is the same as democracy. It isn’t.

Marriam-Webster.com defines capitalism as “an economic system characterized by private or corporate ownership of capital goods, by investments that are determined by private decision and by prices, production, and the distribution of goods that are determined mainly by competition in a free market”

By contrast, democracy is defined as “a form of government in which people choose leaders by voting and an organization or situation in which everyone is treated equally and has equal rights”

Under capitalism, everyone isn’t treated equally, and I’ve never heard of a corporate CEO elected by the people who work for the corporation the CEO rules over.

A member of the U.S. Congress is an elected—by the people—representative. The president is elected by the 538 electors of the Electoral College. Most states have a “winner-take-all” system—based on the popular vote of the people—that awards all electors to the winning presidential candidate. However, Maine and Nebraska each have a variation of “proportional representation.”

In fact, there have been four Presidential elections where the winner lost the popular vote of the people but won through the Electoral College: John Quincy Adams in 1824, Rutherford B. Hayes in 1876, Benjamin Harrison in 1888, and George W. Bush in 2000—yes, Al Gore had 540,000 more votes from the people than Bush, but G. W. won the electoral vote, 271 to 266. FactCheck.org

I’m going to copy the product description on Amazon here: “Everyone knows the case of the woman who sued McDonald s over spilled coffee. Or do they? More than 15 years after making international news, the case continues to be cited as an example of citizens who use frivolous lawsuits to take unfair advantage of the American legal system. But is that an accurate portrayal of the facts?

“An eye-opening documentary with jaw-dropping revelations, HOT COFFEE exposes how corporations spend millions on propaganda campaigns to distort Americans’ view of lawsuits forever changing the civil justice system. By examining the impact of tort reform on the lives of ordinary citizens, the film shows how Americans give up their Constitutional rights in all sorts of ways without knowing it for example, by voting for caps on damages or signing away your rights in contracts. Through interviews with politicians, judges, lawyers and ordinary citizens, first-time filmmaker and former public-interest lawyer Susan Saladoff delves into the facts of four cases to tear apart the conventional wisdom about jackpot justice.”

Watching this film, I discovered that the propaganda campaigns that were used to manipulate the justice system in the United States are also being used to distort Americans’ view of democratic public education.

Americans are literally being fooled—out of ignorance and laziness—to surrender their Constitutional Rights, vote out democracy, and replace democracy with a profit-driven, corporate oligarchy that doesn’t answer to the Constitution or the U.S. justice system. Watch the next video at your own peril.

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Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

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Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

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