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Socialism Without a Soul

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Posted on Mar 10, 2009
Wall St. bull
AP photo / Mary Altaffer

Iconic and ironic: The Wall Street bull runs wild.

By Robert Scheer

Newt Gingrich is right: “It is European socialism transplanted to Washington.” How else to describe an economy in which the government controls the entire financial center and is now supplying life support for the auto industry? That’s on top of the existing socialist economy run by the military-industrial complex, which, thanks to George W. Bush, now absorbs upward of 60 percent of the non-entitlement federal budget.

Although we still have a way to go to catch up with the good parts of the European system, including universal health care, high-quality public education and decent working conditions, we do have a system that is now as socialist in budget size as Europe’s. That part I get when I listen to the right-wingers on Fox News bemoaning the reversal of the Reagan Revolution. But what I don’t understand is how in the world they can blame this startling turn of events on Barack Obama. 

The vast majority of money allocated so far on President Obama’s watch is an extension of Bush’s banking bailout, which has committed trillions to failed Wall Street conglomerates. I certainly don’t want to defend the bailout and personally think the banks and stockbrokers deserve to go belly up, but what does that mess have to do with Obama, who was in college when the Reagan Revolution launched the deregulation that allowed Wall Street to run wild?

Didn’t Obama inherit the current financial meltdown less than two months ago from the Republicans, who for eight years under Bush assured us that the markets were not in any need of tighter regulation? Wasn’t it GOP congressional members led by folks like Gingrich who pushed though the deregulation legislation that enabled the growth of “too big to fail” financial institutions that now have to be saved by the taxpayers?

Nor has Obama demanded anything more in the way of accountability from those Wall Street swindlers than had the Bush administration. Under both presidents a total of $170 billion was given to insurance giant AIG, and, as The Wall Street Journal reported, at least $50 billion of that money was passed on to top foreign and domestic banks without any public accounting. Indeed, the second in command at the Fed told a Senate committee last week that he wouldn’t reveal the names of the banks that grabbed our money.

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Nor has there been any serious demand put on the banks to use the hundreds of billions in federal funds they received to increase liquidity. Indeed, the banks are raising interest rates and cutting limits on credit cards at a time when the government is hoping consumers will use those cards to pump some life into the retail market. As bank industry analyst Meredith Whitney wrote in a Wall Street Journal Op-Ed article, consumer credit card lines “were reduced by nearly $500 billion in the fourth quarter of 2008 alone.” She estimates that credit card limits for consumers will be halved over the next year, mostly on consumers who have not done anything wrong. This will take “credit away from people who have the ability to pay their bills,” she notes.

So what we have here is socialism without even the pretense of a soul. Certainly that has been the case with the abject refusal of the banks that received government bailouts to be more aggressive in preventing home foreclosures. And the Obama administration has made it clear that it has no intention of taking over the operation of any of the mega-companies that are in trouble, even when, as in the case of AIG, the government already owns 80 percent of the shares. The reason? Because that would be viewed as nationalization.

So what exactly would Obama’s critics do differently? Nothing on the bailout side. Instead, they have settled for carping criticism of the stimulus package, playing games by nitpicking lesser-cost programs while ignoring the big items that most governors, be they Republican or Democrat, eagerly want. The great fear of the GOP seems to be that some of the stimulus program might actually prove helpful to struggling Americans, but the Republicans can’t just come out of the closet and say so.

What they have picked up on instead is that Obama’s tax cuts provide some redistribution of income to favor the rapidly disappearing middle class at the expense of the super-wealthy, who have profited wildly from Bush tax cuts. Which brings us back to Gingrich’s complaint that Obama is importing European socialism. If that means a system of governance in which a robust middle class is rewarded for work with a strong social safety net supported by higher taxes on the most affluent, well, let’s get it on.

Click here to check out Robert Scheer’s book,
“The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street.”


Keep up with Robert Scheer’s latest columns, interviews, tour dates and more at www.truthdig.com/robert_scheer.



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By Inherit The Wind, March 17, 2009 at 4:08 am Link to this comment

Louise,

I’ll bet your White and Asian friends like you too!
(or they wouldn’t be friends, would they?)

FolkTruther doesn’t hate Obama because he’s Black (or mixed).  He hates him because he’s a Democrat and FT believes there is NO difference between GOP and Dem—like Nader said infamously in 2000 about Gore and Bush that “there isn’t a dimes worth of difference between them”.  Now, of course, we know there was about $3 TRILLION dollars’ difference between them.

But in FT’s world, anybody who isn’t Socialist is a write off, Marxist is maybe acceptable, and only neo-Marxist is ideal.  Since Obama can’t even be tinged a little “pink” (tho the GOPers are trying) that means he is, in FT’s mind, by definition, totally corrupt as a member of the Democratic party other than Dennis Kucinich—for whom FT has a grudging respect.

To give FT credit, I think he’d LIKE Obama to succeed in the economy, in Iraq, Afghanistan and in creating a 2-State solution. But FT believes it’s utterly impossible by the steps B.O. is taking.

See, I’ve crossed keyboards with that ridiculous arrogant ignoramus many, many times and I think I know a bit of how he thinks (lol) tho he does surprise me from time to time.

(Just for reference—he calls me “ignorant boob” all the time—I don’t take offense—that way I know he’s directing his post at me.)

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By Louise, March 16, 2009 at 2:00 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther,

The policies that Obama implements, are as different from Bush and classic republicanism as day is from night!

The political counter revolution you speak of is in fact a revolving (as in turning) from static backward thinking to positive, aggressive action. Now if you can’t get that, even in the face of fact demonstrated on every single issue that affects us all, you need to pay more attention. Perhaps your problem is the need to give all of this some deep sinister meaning, like something couched in a counter right counter revolution, revolution. Or is it counter left revolution, counter revolution? Whatever, it’s nuts. And the endless stream of fault-finding in a desperate effort to find actual fault does indeed make it look like you hate Obama.

If you don’t, you have a funny way of showing it.

And what the heck is the Dem establishment anyway? If you think that means “elite” you’re way off base as far as I go. Or, does it bother you that the dems appear to be established as opposed to the repubs discombobulated disassociation? My membership in the Black community can be largely defined as WE are all members of the human community. But if the “black” community is as narrowly defined by you as your perception of establishment seems to be, I’m the wrong color.

However my black friends and relatives like me, so you must be wrong about that too. smile

But thats OK. Keep trying, sooner or later you’ll get understanding left right. wink

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By Anarcissie, March 16, 2009 at 1:16 pm Link to this comment

Outraged:
’...  It is best IMO, to tread carefully and put into place those structures which will undermine current power structure.  Another serious issue which needs examination is the institutionalization and acceptance of corporate “personhood”.  It is imperative that this bizarre condition be abolished.’

While I believe that class can be sustained only by class war, I don’t think the American people generally understand that.  A large number of them believe they can climb up to a relatively advantageous class position, and indeed there is some truth in this for the talented and disciplined.  And a large number are highly sycophantic toward wealth and power.  We need a different culture.  In the area of working with what we have now, I believe that a strong anti-war movement is the best bet because whereas anti-rich is unpopular, anti-war is popular.  Imperial war and “nation-building” are connected (correctly) in many people’s minds with the financial debacle, and not just among the Left, but among people right across the political spectrum.  Also, I think explicit, overt war is harming more people more seriously, like, killing and maiming them, at the moment, than the class war, so reducing the war-and-imperialism effort might save many lives.

Building a new social order in the shell of the old, and getting rid of the personhood of corporations, are indeed worthy goals, but they will probably take longer to bring about because people are not well-informed about these issues.

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By ron hansing, March 16, 2009 at 11:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Be careful what you wish for. Europe has 10-15 % chronic unemployment, and college grads are the new temp/intern generation since nobody wants to hire them because it is so difficult to fire them.

Blame Bush??? Why not the old standbye, the Jews???

The reality is that if one googles all the recently passed laws over the last 20 years by congress, one will find that both the republicans AND the democrats overwhelmingly passed them, more often with more democrats than republicans voting for them. The commodity reconsilation act was passed with a 100% of congress without debate.

The subprime laws, passed by both parties, with more dems than republicans votes.

And I could go on, but it’s all on the internet.

Wake up!!!! It’s congress, Stupid. Nothing will change until we recognize this.

ron hansing.

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By Folktruther, March 16, 2009 at 10:20 am Link to this comment

louise, your views are those of the Dem establishment and loyal rank and filers, especially those of the black community who of course are delighted to see an Afraican-American is a position of authority.  As am I.  In addition Obama is intelligent, articulate, stable and personable, a far better choice that McCain personally as president.

I don’t HATE Obama.  I hate the policies that he is implementing, which are the same policies that Bush installed in the political counter revolution the Bushites effected.  Obama is consolidating this counter revolution.  Which is never acknowledged in the progressive mainstream truth.

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By Folktruther, March 16, 2009 at 10:10 am Link to this comment

Outraged—Very good points.  the fascist movements in Italy, Germany and elsewhere were funded by capitalists and, especially in Germany, funded by Thyson, Krupp, etc, cane to power on a pseudo-anti-capitalist rhetoric.  Just as in the US, Bush, who is from a billionaire family who went to Yale and Harvard, rails, with the Gops, against those liberal Elitists who are Dems.

Of course the Dems leaders ARE liberal Elitists, also funded by the ruling class,  but who wish to reform slightly the current American power system.  In the NYTimes today a front page article reports that Obama is disturbed by the public outrage at Wall Street, who has, after all,  put him in power to defend them.  But this requires an (insufficient) move torward more regulation which the Gops, including most of the ruling class, and Wall Street, oppose.

So the rhetoric of the Dems and Gops differ and at times simulate the ideology of the rank and file.  Since most people are involved in their personal lives, are tend to beat down financially, and politics is at the margin of their consciousness, how are they to distinguish the reality-based truth from the uusal political deception?

My view is to make it as simple as possible and to formulate it from a population perspective rather than a power perspective.  Doing so conflicts sharply with the mainstream truth, and so is unfamiliar to people at first.  But it is only in this way that the population and their truthers can develop those institutions in embryo necessary to to replace the American power system as it becomes increasingly more despotic and ineffective and finally collapses.

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By Louise, March 16, 2009 at 9:25 am Link to this comment

Folktruther,

Point well taken. I apologize for implying you’re nuts, or have too much time on your hands. If you don’t take meds and you have a life, I guess you are simply, exactly what I already think.

Someone who HATES Obama and will twist and misrepresent any fact at hand to justify that hatred.

Perhaps if whoever you think should have been president had been able to step into BUSH’S MESS and fix everything to your liking in EIGHT WEEKS, we might all agree with your insight. But because we don’t know who that perfect president is, that super-dooper wonder-person you want running things, all we can do is pay attention to who is. And we are!

And given the mess he inherited from Bush and a cable of really dumb republicans, I think he is remarkable! There aren’t very many people in the world who would jump in with both feet and hit the ground running! Especially when they know they’re jumping into the biggest pile of shit any president has left us since before the Great Depression!

‘Course he doesn’t have a cape that makes him fly, and he doesn’t have bomb deflecting wrist bracelets, and he isn’t “faster than a speeding bullet and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound,” but my gosh ... he really is doing something!

Is he perfect? NOBODY’S PERFECT! Will there be false steps and blunders? Well yeh ... that’s the nature of being human. Will blunders be recognized and corrected? Yep! Will false steps lead to re-steps? Double Yep! Pay attention!

And what he is doing WILL turn the economy around. Will end stupid wars and WILL restore sanity to a nation too long governed by the insane!  And you know what? He’ll do it in spite of people like you who spread falsehoods and negativity. Stick your foot out to trip, while trying to hasten a collapse! And THAT’S what I CAN’T UNDERSTAND!

WHY DO YOU SO BADLY WANT OBAMA TO FAIL?
WHY DO YOU WANT OUR GOVERNMENT AND OUR ECONOMY TO COLLAPSE?

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By Outraged, March 16, 2009 at 12:21 am Link to this comment

Re: Folktruther

Your comment to Anarcisse:  “Anarcissie- I think anti-rich is the way to go.”

Not necessarily.  Read Robert Palmer’s book, The Anatomy of Fascism”  an excerpt:

“These more focused steps forced the fascist parties to make their priorities clearer.  At this stage, one can begin to test fascist rhetoric against fascist actions.  We can see what really counted.  The radical rhetoric never disappeared, of course: as late as June 1940 Mussolini summoned “Proletarian and Fascist Italy” and “the Blackshirts of the Revolution” to “the battlefield against the plutocratic and reactionary democracies of the West”.  As soon as the fascist parties began to take root in concrete political action, however, the selective nature of their anti-bourgeois rhetoric became clearer.

It turned out in practice that fascists’ anti-capitalism was highly selective.  Even at their most radical, the socialism that the fascists wanted was a “national socialism”: one that denied only foreign or enemy property rights (including that of internal enemies).  They cherished national producers.”

It is best IMO, to tread carefully and put into place those structures which will undermine current power structure.  Another serious issue which needs examination is the institutionalization and acceptance of corporate “personhood”.  It is imperative that this bizarre condition be abolished.

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By wildflower, March 15, 2009 at 8:39 pm Link to this comment

Dean Baker of “Beat the Press” has some interesting info in his “It’s Bush’s Deficit, the Republicans Are Not Telling the Truth” notes:

“The overwhelming majority of the budget deficit that the Republicans are now complaining about is directly attributable to President Bush’s policies.

The additional deficit for 2009 that it is attributable to President Obama’s efforts to fix the disastrous economy that he was handed by President Bush is trivial in comparison, as can be clearly seen. (The projections are taken from CBO).

http://www.prospect.org/csnc/blogs/beat_the_press

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By Folktruther, March 15, 2009 at 7:40 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie- I think anti-rich is the way to go.  The main reason that the wars and homeland despotism is proceeding apace is because the class inequality has reached monstrous proportions.  the only way the power structure can mainstain and increase it is to divert attention by wars, delude the population by irrationality, and increase homeland coercion.  Nationalizing the rich connects to all progressive agendas.

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By Anarcissie, March 15, 2009 at 5:42 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther:
‘Louise—sooner or later you and the Dems will have to acknowledge that the criticism of Obama is not because he is doing good too slow, but that he is doing bad too quick. But by that time policy will be deeply implanted in the first hundred days, it will be very difficult to change. ...’

Actually, I think the plan is muddle around for awhile and see if anything turns up.  In other words, some tactical changes are in the program and expected.  I formerly thought one part of the plan was to inflate the currency, but I see that the biggies of China have nixed that idea.  Interesting times; I wonder what’s next.  In any case, I continue to think anti-war is the way to go.  As I said, I think Mr. O will have to jump Left or Right if issue is raised in a serious way.

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By Folktruther, March 15, 2009 at 1:01 pm Link to this comment

Louise—sooner or later you and the Dems will have to acknowledge that the criticism of Obama is not because he is doing good too slow, but that he is doing bad too quick. But by that time policy will be deeply implanted in the first hundred days, it will be very difficult to change.

Louise, don’t write vulgar crap like meds, etc, you’re better than that. If you are not comfortable with polemic, don’t use it.  Your research and factual analysis are very persuasive.  Except of course when the facts are against you, as in supporting Obama as a progressive.

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By Louise, March 15, 2009 at 12:08 pm Link to this comment

Regarding the Bush II Library.

I have it on good authority the Architect sees a vision of greatness in his design. Typified by a tall, circular, dome topped edifice, that will tip and droop a bit to one side. To each side there will be smaller domes, one slightly smaller than the other. And the whole thing will be capped by a fountain shooting red white and blue spray from a moving mouth saying over and over again, “In Gods name.”

“Motion, color and sound will create a sense of calm and anticipation all at the same time,” said the architect. “I feel we have exactly captured the spirit of hard work leading to a climax, of sorts.”

Inside we will find rooms and rooms containing volumes and volumes of books relating the great achievements of the 43rd president. The former First lady, and a staff of three thousand writers are feverishly working, even as we speak, on their creation.

~~~

‘Course I just made all that up. I suspect the library will actually be more in keeping with the boring edifice of the “Ranch” house.

In order to keep former presidents from erecting another Great Pyramid in their own honor, the government requires the bigger the square footage, the bigger the endowment. That being the case, the Bush II Library will no doubt be somewhat modest. But then who knows. Those fundamentalists are really fond of building big, ostentatious and glitzy.

Once the building is dedicated, the library is turned over to the National Archives and Records Administration, which runs it, pays the staff, director and archivists (federal employees) and pays for much of the maintenance.

Maybe they’ll put a theme park on the premises, making it more appealing to potential visitors. Everyone enjoys a roller-coaster ride!

Geez! maybe they can even turn a profit!

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By wildflower, March 15, 2009 at 10:53 am Link to this comment

Meanwhile, back at the ranch . . .

Former deregulation President George W. “is . . . raising $300 million for a presidential library, museum. . . The former president and first lady have already begun holding small private dinners to persuade wealthy friends to invest in a monument and incubator based on the values and events of his presidency.

By this fall, he’ll be armed with architect’s renderings and will hold travel around the country to meet with groups and build support for the complex on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas. . .

The way presidential libraries work, the library and museum will be run by the government after they’re built by the George W. Bush Foundation, which is chaired by Donald L. Evans, the president’s longtime friend and former commerce secretary. . .

Evans promises “an honest presentation of the very difficult choices the president had to make, but certainly an opportunity to highlight the many accomplishments of his presidency, as well,” with an emphasis on “the values and principles that drive him.”

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0309/19996.html

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By Louise, March 15, 2009 at 8:31 am Link to this comment

Folktruther,

I have an idea. Why don’t you, and everyone else who sees President Obama’s “slowness” as more responsible for the mess created by republican leadership than the republicans, form some sort of coalition?

You know, a kinda think tank to lead us all, and the president (backwards) into a bright red day.

I mean, if you can so clearly see how less than two months leadership has caused ten years of chaos, don’t you think you owe the world the benefit of your great wisdom?

Don’t you think the very least you could do is solve all those problems in the next few days? I mean really, if you have all the answers, quit being so selfish and solve everything!

Like, right now!

(Or take your meds ... Or get a life.)

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By Outraged, March 14, 2009 at 11:17 pm Link to this comment

Re: Folktruther

Your comment: “Americans are at the point now where they simply don’t care enough about war, torture, a presidential dictatorship, or any issue but the economy to demonstrate against them.”

They care.  Maybe we need to reawaken the American People.  Healthcare not Warfare is one place to start (kind of a “killing two birds with one stone”) premise.

With the economy in dire straits, we certainly could utilize some of that INFLATED pentagon budget….no?  How about the millions and billions spent on the “war on drugs” these are MORE funds which could be put to better use.  Let’s get off that military-industrial complex and prison-industrial complex gravy train which robs the taxpayer and facsistically fills the coffers of the crony punks and their lobbiest crony “friends”.

I think we need some Ron Paul people to call on the carpet some of these lobbiest “friends” of the crony punks.  I think they’re very good at this type of thing…. in this regard, I give them all the credit in the world.

Each of us can do, what we know and what we do best, and every helping hand is needed.  You betcha.

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By Anarcissie, March 14, 2009 at 9:20 pm Link to this comment

Indeed, people must connect the war with the depression, and with the rich getting fat bonuses while people go jobless, homeless and maybe soon hungry.  I think focusing on the war might be a good starting point.  But meanwhile I imagine Democratic operatives are keeping UFPJ and the like quiet.  This is something which should be brought up here and there.

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By Joseph, March 14, 2009 at 9:03 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Bottom line, America’s Financial Community has shown their asses to the world. 

Those who create nothing, should never feel superior to those who create something.

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By Folktruther, March 14, 2009 at 8:55 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie- the Dims were a major force diminishing the anti-war movement.  The radicals were divided from the liberals and the liberal leaders coopted.

Americans are at the point now where they simply don’t care enough about war, torture, a presidential dictatorship, or any issue but the economy to demonstrate against them. Obama just gave more tens of billions of dollars to A.I.G. who is handing out a hundred million in bonuses, and is publically speculating that he is going tax health benefits. And most rank and file progressives still support him.

Oppression oppresses, corruption corrupts, and brutality brutalizes.  there needs to be an ideological revival in the population before effective resistence can be mounted.  the american people have been turned into a audience.  They have to be politicized if they are to resist effectively in the comming depression.  I admit that I don’t know the best way to do this, and what and who to focus on.

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By Anarcissie, March 14, 2009 at 7:55 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther:
‘Oh, I see, Anarcissie.  You want to separate the struggle against war from the historical struggle against oppressive power.  Let me think about that.’

Well, actually, they’re inseparable.  But anti-war is not only a good cause, it appeals now very widely beyond the Left.  And Mr. O and his administration are susceptible to pressure about it, because it appeals strongly to their base.  Unlike the Party of Limbaugh, they can’t just consign anti-war people to damnation as dirty traitors.

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By Folktruther, March 14, 2009 at 4:53 pm Link to this comment

Golly, gee whiz, Louise, you’ve convinced me.  You will identify with Our President no matter what he does.  Just like Zionsits identify with Their Homeland.  I confess that in both cases I don’t understand why.

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By Louise, March 14, 2009 at 4:22 pm Link to this comment

The way I see it, those who have their own agenda seem unwilling or incapable of seeing any other problem(s) President Obama has to deal with. Which is not only counter-productive, it’s disingenuous.

Sure, I would like to see all war stop tomorrow! I would also like to see Heads rolled out of the Ivory Towers that created the financial collapse. Although as we learn and understand more and more about how it happened, those financial gurus who designed the plan are becoming less and less relevant. In fact I don’t think we’re far from seeing the whole industry laugh them out of the room. But I’d still like to see a few Heads rolled into the street!

I would like to see fair and equitable health care, and college affordable to any who want to go. And I would like to see sanity restored to the bankruptcy laws! And while we’re on the subject of laws, I would like to see the Military Commissions Act done away with and labor laws that were created by Bush’s Labor department, repealed.

And while we’re on the subject of repeal, we need to re-visit Parks, and Environment, and Homeland Securities handling of Border issues, and the laws both State and Federal, that made it possible to create private for-profit prisons. And how about those stupid no child left behind rules that leave millions of children behind? And what about that rule that says all Intelligence is intelligent? Is it actually classified as intelligent to keep it classified? And I’d like to see the DOD budget shrink and fewer things that go boom made and more money spent on weapons that actually build instead of destroy! Like people to people contact and petro free energy!

Well golly wiz! Obama actually is doing something about health care, bankruptcy, labor laws, homeland security, no child left behind, DOD, diplomacy, Parks, and petro free energy! And he’s got his Justice Department looking into abuses Bush made legal, as outlined in the Military Commissions Act. And he’s working at getting the bad assets cleared up and trying to restore capital to banks to get things rolling again, with our money which makes us the bankers. And actually some of those Heads are gone, just not all of them. And I know I’ve left a ton of stuff off the list, but hey, who has made a complete list? Anybody?

Maybe it’s a bit overwhelming, eh? But overwhelming or not, our president is tackling them one by one, and sometimes two by two, or three. But we never hear anything about that, do we. Uh-uh. So much more satisfying to pick one “favorite” and beat us all over the head with it, over and over and over again!

All I can say is I’m sure glad he’s the one “fortunate” enough to get Bushes Bloody Blunders dumped on him, ‘cause I couldn’t handle it! And neither could any of you!

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By Folktruther, March 14, 2009 at 1:31 pm Link to this comment

Oh, I see, Anarcissie.  You want to separate the struggle against war from the historical struggle against oppressive power.  Let me think about that.

Wildflower, let me just say this.  Phoosh.

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By wildflower, March 14, 2009 at 12:49 pm Link to this comment

Re Folktruther: “If there is to be a viable anti-war movement, or any progressive movement, it must oppose the Dim-Gop policies.  Period.”

In all due respect, Folktruther, your approach to problem solving sounds a lot like the path promoted by right wing evangelical zealots – except their issue is/has been “pro-life.” And what have the right wing zealots gained by turning their backs on the other critical issues this country faces?

The answer is fairly obvious – a world wide economic crisis, an illegal invasion where thousands of lives have been lost; a surge in corrupt privatization; a corrupted judicial system; an eroded educational, healthcare, and retirement system; a weakened infrastructure;  and high unemployment.

The point is the U.S. is facing a number of critical issues and each needs to be resolved, including the one you’ve identified.  To suggest that “progressives” take the same irresponsible path that the right wing zealots have taken and focus on one issue while ignoring the rest is faulty thinking.  In the end, it will only lead to more chaos, corruption, destruction and human suffering.

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By Anarcissie, March 14, 2009 at 9:02 am Link to this comment

Folktruther:
‘Anarcissie-Let me just say this. Phoosh.  Of course people have to turn against Obaama to oppose the wars, and the War on Terrorism that legitimates it.  Obama just INCREASED the new military budget and has now expanded the Afghan war ot Pakistan.  They ahve to turn against Obama the way the progressive American people turned against Johnson during the Vietnam war.

How can you oppose the wars and support the president to made the policies to continue them? ...’

People believe and support all kinds of contradictory things, especially in abstract realms like politics.  Right now, those who style themselves “Progressives” have been bought off by the vision of a more generous Caesar throwing more plentiful alms, however debased, from his hip, late-model chariot.  I don’t want to bother going against that, against the belief in Father Christmas and Good King Wenceslaus.  I think anti-war will do the trick.  Put Mr. O in the sights of a serious anti-war effort and he’ll have to dodge one way or the other.  If he dodges to the Left, the Empire will fall apart faster.  If he dodges to the Right, his base will evaporate.  And everyone hates the war(s), so some sort of public movement should be pretty popular.

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By Crimes of the State Blog, March 14, 2009 at 8:02 am Link to this comment

Down the rabbit hole:

“And the Obama administration has made it clear that it has no intention of taking over the operation of any of the mega-companies that are in trouble, even when, as in the case of AIG, the government already owns 80 percent of the shares. The reason? Because that would be viewed as nationalization.”

This could be the greatest grand larceny in human history.  You’re okay with it?

“AIG Insurance” with ties to CIA around the world deserves our childrens’, our grandchildrens’, and their childrens’ indentured servitude in perpetuity…?

Generations of Americans not even born yet should be put in slavery to pay endless debt to the kleptocrat robber barons of today (with the fawning, orgasmic cheering of both criminal political parties)?

I think it’s high time to look into that expatriation option.

No thanks, you can have my Kool Aid.

PS.

I forgot ROBERT E. RUBIN, also should be on a most-wanted list.  Former Treasury Secretary to BILL CLINTON, and “top economic adviser to President-elect Barack Obama…”

Robert Rubin, of course, torpedoed Glass-Steagall, knowingly sabotaging the US economy and engineering the current fiasco, so that certain interests would seize “opportunities” which they tell us these crises give them.

I guess a complete and utter failure in the professional media and the alternative “gatekeeper” media (which seems coordinated, rather than out of ignorance) has led America to the very edge of the cliff.

For the record:

Justice?  Dead.
Common sense?  Dead.
The truth?  Dead.
Democracy?  Long dead, replaced by Plutocracy.
The rule of law?  Dead.
Restraint on military mass murder?  Dead.

How long do you expect domestic civil rights to hold out against this bipartisan onslaught?  While most of you cheer on the next group of fascists as some kind of saviors?

http://crimesofthestate.blogspot.com/

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By Folktruther, March 13, 2009 at 6:08 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie-Let me just say this. Phoosh.  Of course people have to turn against Obaama to oppose the wars, and the War on Terrorism that legitimates it.  Obama just INCREASED the new military budget and has now expanded the Afghan war ot Pakistan.  They ahve to turn against Obama the way the progressive American people turned against Johnson during the Vietnam war. 

How can you oppose the wars and support the president to made the policies to continue them?
the Obama administration just argued in court to drop the word ‘unlawful combatant’ while continuing the Bushite policies to imprison them indefinitely without charges, perhaps eventually in some other prison. 

If you are satisfied with changinte the words and keep the Bushite actions, you can support Obama.  Otherwise not.  If there is to be a viable anti-war movement, or any progressive movement, it must oppose the Dim-Gop policies.  Period.

We have to get out of the absurdly restricted notion that politics is what happens between the two capitalist parties that both support the American power structure.

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By Anarcissie, March 13, 2009 at 3:35 pm Link to this comment

’... Apparently how he looks and what he says is so different from Bush that it is assumed that the policies are also so different.  And people can see no progressive alternative to supporting Obama. ...’

I do think Obama presents an opportunity that McCain would not have.  Obama stirred a lot of people and a lot of issues up.  One of those issues was the question of continued militarism and imperialism.  I believe that a very large portion of those who supported Obama are opposed to continued imperialist aggression and wanted and expected to see something different.  A vigorous anti-war movement could be collecting these people.  They would not even have to “turn against” Obama—they could claim to be enabling his true nature to appear, “Let Obama be Obama” and so on.

Instead, now that the wars can’t be exclusively blamed on Bush, they seem to have been swept under the rug.

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By Crimes of the State Blog, March 13, 2009 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

NO, SCHEER:

“The vast majority of money allocated so far on President Obama’s watch is an extension of Bush’s banking bailout, which has committed trillions to failed Wall Street conglomerates. I certainly don’t want to defend the bailout and personally think the banks and stockbrokers deserve to go belly up, but what does that mess have to do with Obama, who was in college when the Reagan Revolution launched the deregulation that allowed Wall Street to run wild?”

Geithner, Summers.  Clinton. What sort of partisan gibberish ignores the guys who dismantled Glass-Steagall, the Act that prevented the derivatives trading and subsequent bubble at the root of the collapse?  The guys Obama picked to run the economy, despite the FACT they should be in jail for official malfeasance, at the very least.

You should really do a film review of Alex Jones’ new film, The Obama Deception, as most of his points are quite unassailable.

Is this independent media, or a branch of the Democratic Party?

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By Folktruther, March 13, 2009 at 9:51 am Link to this comment

Outraged- I read your post with deep anguish.  I reread my own again and what appears obvious to me, and what I think I am communicating in a simple, clear concise way, is literally not understandable to you.  And you are an intelligent, honest and progressive truther.  But our worldviews are so different that communication between them is apparently difficult.  And if you can’t understand this worldview, how can the American people understand it.

It is similar to Anarcissie’s.  Although we disagree on a number of issues, we both think that the capitalist power system is ruled to promote the intersts of the rich, no more than a few percent of the population, under the guise of promoting the interests of the general population.  And, with marginal differences, this the case no matter who is Commander in Chief, i.e. president.

As power systems or polities age, class inequality increases, making the power interests of the ruling class and those of the population increasingly diverge.  This historical observation is not original with either Anarcissie or myself.  As Someone once said, the increased class conflict leads to the replacement of one class by another, or the common ruin of the contending classes.  The replacement of Bush by Obama does not change this longterm historical situation.

If we think in decades rather than years, and in world history rather than being restricted to the American truth tradition, the change from Bush to Obama is insignificant. War continues, class inequality continues, Homeland despotism continues, and the US continues it death culture.  The American power system increasingly rules by violence rather than acceptance as legitimate by the population.

The US government may belong to the American populatin by right and by the Constitution, but by inherited power it belongs to the rich and powerful.  And hisstorically they have never given up that power out of the goodness of their hearts.  As their legitimacy decreases, they increasingly rule by violence, coercion and deceit.

And Obama is now their public face.  A very intelligent, talented political figure who speaks wonderfully and looks good on TV.  And he is using his talent, intellignece and rhetoric to promote the policies of the rich and powerful.  By giving tax money to the rich through the banks, by continuing and expanding the wars of Bush, by continuing torture which he says does not occur, by spying on the American people, by supporting Israel ethnic cleansing.

What is hard to understand about this?  He raised nearly a billion dollars to get elected, twice as much as McCain.  Who do you think gave him this money in big enough lumps so he is beholden to them if he is going to get elected next time.

Apparently how he looks and what he says is so different from Bush that it is assumed that the policies are also so different.  And people can see no progressive alternative to supporting Obama.  But when you do, you support Bushite policies no matter how you feel or what you want.  It is necessary to OPPOSE Obama to get progressive policies, just as conservatives oppose both Dims and Gops to get conservative policies.

But this is apparently difficult for progressives to understand.

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By Anarcissie, March 13, 2009 at 8:57 am Link to this comment

Outraged:
’... This was my point of an “evolving entity”, it’ll go one way or the other in the end. ...’

I doubt if Folktruther thinks the present set of institutions can evolve significantly.  There is certainly not much sign of evolution so far beyond a change of style.  And it seems that the continued monarchicalism of the people will support the existing system to the bitter end.

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By bogi666, March 13, 2009 at 7:02 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The Republican Party official unofficial mantra since 1978 has been to turn the USA into an Indonesia type society which has no government services at all. No consumer protection, health care research, absolutely nothing except tax collections I suppose. This is what the Republican Party wants for the USA AND ARE IMPLEMENTING IT.It was Nixon in the early 70’s who exclaimed that the American public was getting to smart and that the education system had to be gutted, expanding nationally what Reagan was doing to the higher education system in the state of California.

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By Outraged, March 12, 2009 at 11:46 pm Link to this comment

Re: Folktruther

Your comment: “The American population must find institutional ways of picking up the pieces after the collapse of the current American power system. 

And the firsts step is to destoy the fear of thinking about it.  It is necessary to restore the distrust of the American people in their religous, political and intellectual leaders.  Including, indeed, especially in the Commander in Chief, the captain of the ship of state.”

I read your comment many times trying to ascertain if I’m understanding it the way you meant it.  lol.  Because after carefully reading it many times I sense that we agree, but then again…. maybe I’m wrong.  To me, it seems you are saying what “I” was saying.  Let’s see.

You said: “The American population must find institutional ways of picking up the pieces after the collapse of the current American power system.”

I said: “There are legions of people outside of government working non-stop, in all types of capacity to whittle away at the corrupt, abuse of power abomination in which we now find ourselves.”

and:
“On the other hand, if we let the thing disappear into the depths of oblivion and we haven’t a dinghy, what then will be our fate?”

Unless we are talking about two totally different issues, (and I think we’re talking about the same thing…let me know) I would say we agree.  I think this situation is here because of the power system you speak of.  Therefore, we need to “whittle away”, “make sure we have a dinghy” and incorporate the “legions of people working outside of government non-stop” to counter the mess we’re in.  Isn’t that saying the same thing?

You said: “It is necessary to restore the distrust of the American people in their religous, political and intellectual leaders.  Including, indeed, especially in the Commander in Chief, the captain of the ship of state.”

I said: “Obama is also not a one man band.  He is ONE element in a very complex and evolving entity.”

Although I would disagree with your choice of the word, “distrust”.  I see it as, basically not to be disillusioned and simply “put all your eggs” in one basket and ignorantly “hope” Obama “fixes” it.  So in that sense I think we agree.  But I also think that Obama can only do what he can do and to scapegoat the man is wrong.

I don’t see Obama as carrying on Bush admin. policies per se, since we are early in the game here and it is the interim phase of the switch from Bush to Obama.  I think he’s made some changes that are a good sign, but I don’t say it’s a done deal either way.  Given the complexity of the situation, it would be best to maintain stability and have an accurate grasp of the far reaching consequences, and the support structure in place before instituting serious change.

This was my point of an “evolving entity”, it’ll go one way or the other in the end.  I feel we have to fight to make it go in our best interests and protect ourselves best we can if it doesn’t.  As it stands, the governement is OURS, by right via the constitution, and THAT is what we need to take back.

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By wildflower, March 12, 2009 at 8:24 pm Link to this comment

Since the “Reagan Revolution launched the deregulation that allowed Wall Street to run wild,” I believe it’s appropriate we borrow a catchy phrase, “welfare queens,” from Reagan’s revolutionary campaign chest, and bestow it upon these greedy Republican crooks of the Reagan Revolution. So from this day forth the Republican Party shall be known as the party of the “Wall Street Queens.”

[No offense to queens anywhere and everywhere intended]

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By yours truly, March 12, 2009 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

In Changing The World Who Leads?

“Us.”

“Based on?”

“Yes we can.”

“Otherwise?”

“Forget it.”

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By TC, March 12, 2009 at 12:14 pm Link to this comment

From The Vassals Handbook:

Lesson one – vassalism is capitalism wrought real

Citizens are gone. They are now vassals. It happened in a funny way. All the banks around the world collapsed, broke. So the peoples’ money was used to refund all the banks. But don’t get any ideas. When the people buy the banks, do they not own them? Yes and no, but mostly and decisively no. You see, the people may properly own the banks (having bought them) but they sure as hell do not get to decide what to do with the money or how to do it. For that is not capitalism, and capitalism is what they bought. Clear? Clever? Clout. In capitalism, the people do not own the decisions. They are not the deciders. They are the consumers, the workers, and in a pinch they may be the funders. To review, the people may be the buyers and in theory the owners, but they are never ever upon any circumstances the deciders. In capitalism, the well-connected few are the deciders, the rulers who select candidates for office, who dole out funds for the campaigns, who provide the illusion of choice via sundry discrepancies for vassals to obsess over and pick between. Nothing more is meant to be.

Am I speaking over your heads, dear vassals? Let me see if I can put this in plainer words. The privileged few rule, the masses obey, even when the masses do most of the work, buy most of the stuff, and totally bailout the bankrupt rulers. ...

Oh I know you odd, broke, and broken spirits out there may think of vassalism as little more than slavery. We pity you penny-pinched souls who could not be more mistaken, more immoral. After all, slaves had no money and so could not readily repay their debts, let alone those of their superiors. That is the gross deficiency of the economic system of pure slavery. We had to replace it. Vassalism is much more efficient, much safer for rulers everywhere. It puts people in their proper place. All hail vassalism! See you at the wars!

http://apragmaticpolicy.wordpress.com/the-vassals-handbook/

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By Anarcissie, March 12, 2009 at 12:08 pm Link to this comment

Socialism, according to those who invented the idea, is the ownership or control of the means of production by the workers, or by the people.  It is not control of the means of production by a remote bureaucratic elite—that is merely state capitalism.  In any case, neither socialism nor state capitalism is the dominant economic form in Europe; the private-capitalist Welfare state is.

It is not possible to talk about things very successfully using a confused terminology.  But maybe confusion is the point.

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By BobZ, March 12, 2009 at 11:42 am Link to this comment

Robert,

Excellent article as always, which is why I can’t understand why the SF Chronicle doesn’t carry you anymore. As FDR remarked during the “great” depression, “what these fools on Wall Street don’t understand is that I am trying to save capitalism”. And 75 years later Wall Street is still trying to pin the “socialism” tag on a Democratic president, as he tries to save their behinds. Leave it up to the Republican’s in Congress and they would let the American economy go down in flames and the world economy with it. They haven’t learned one damm thing since Herbert Hoover was in office. What is it with these fools? They have been on the wrong side of history since Teddy Roosevelt left office, except for a brief period when Ike was president and kept the right wing at bay. Too many in the GOP are not only extreme conservatives they are outright “reactionaries”, who will cut off their noses to spite their faces in a New York minute just to pay homage to their failed ideology. This is a party that is in grave danger of becoming totally irrelevant. It couldn’t happen to a nicer group of people.

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By Folktruther, March 12, 2009 at 9:29 am Link to this comment

Outraged says, in praising Obama:

  “Experience dictates that it is easier to sink a ship than to right one…”

I only wish that were true of the ship of state.  The US is near the end of its lifetime cycle and the class inequality, and consequent power inequality, has reached monstrous proportions.  And it is icreasing under Obama.  The US ship of state is ruled by a power stucture increasinly violent, lawless, corrupt and barbaric.  Greed routinely trumps need. 

There is no solution within the present American power system.  What is economically necessary is politically impossible.  Restricting politics to the relations between the Gops and Dims is a trap that supports oppressive power.  Obama is promoting the policies of Bush with a margianl change and a different rhetoric.

But the American people, and their truthers are afraid to say so.  The function of Dim truthers is to get the progressive population to support consevative poliicies. Kleptocapitalism, war, and Homeland Despotism.  The American population must find institutional ways of picking up the pieces after the collapse of the current American power system. 

And the firsts step is to destoy the fear of thinking about it.  It is necessary to restore the distrust of the American people in their religous, political and intellectual leaders.  Including, indeed, especially in the Commander in Chief, the captain of the ship of state.

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By Purple Girl, March 12, 2009 at 7:36 am Link to this comment

“For the people and By the people” is a Socialist concept!!!!DUH!!!
The idiots who actually think americans have no idea there is a HUGE difference between Socialism and Communism are looking to be called UNAMERICAN.
Socialism seeks at assure all citizens have access to basic needs- food, shelter, healthcare, education and defense-“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breath free”.Socialism doe not necessary negate a Free market- in fact it encourages and provides for access to the market for All citizens.
communism on the other hand denotes the ownership of all industries and control over the market by only Brick & Mortar entities- whether that be the Gov’t or Corporations. Monarchies and Dictators take up that role in a feudal Caste system.
Although the Obama admin may be forced to take over ownership of the Financial corps-and who’s fault is that? He does not however seek to own and control the Cosmetics nor Computer Corps.I am offended everytime I hear these two totally different doctrines recklessly interchanged. Furhter more if you actually read our Founders Guiding documents you would see they instilled in US a certian level of Socialist ideology when it came to declaring the peoples independence from all entities which attempted to oppress and control US.Gov’t,military, Corps, Religions Serve at the Pleasure of The People, not the other way around.That would be a Communist, monarchy, dictatorship or theocracy.
“We the people” is innately a Socialist Declaration.

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By Outraged, March 11, 2009 at 11:31 pm Link to this comment

Article quote: “But what I don’t understand is how in the world they can blame this startling turn of events on Barack Obama. 

The vast majority of money allocated so far on President Obama’s watch is an extension of Bush’s banking bailout, which has committed trillions to failed Wall Street conglomerates. I certainly don’t want to defend the bailout and personally think the banks and stockbrokers deserve to go belly up, but what does that mess have to do with Obama, who was in college when the Reagan Revolution launched the deregulation that allowed Wall Street to run wild?”

Absolutely, I agree and I’m glad you said that.  Its not only foolish to blame Obama it’s downright stupid.  I think so far he’s doing fairly well considering the gravity of the situation.  It’s not exactly what I would have liked but I also know that if I were in Obama’s shoes, I may have very little choice but to proceed in ways which maintain stability yet slowly turn this thing around.

Obama is also not a one man band.  He is ONE element in a very complex and evolving entity.  There are legions of people outside of government working non-stop, in all types of capacity to whittle away at the corrupt, abuse of power abomination in which we now find ourselves.

Experience dictates that it is easier to sink a ship than to right one…. so it looks to be a long grievous process.  On the other hand, if we let the thing disappear into the depths of oblivion and we haven’t a dinghy, what then will be our fate?

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By Paracelsus, March 11, 2009 at 10:25 pm Link to this comment

I maintain that true freedom comes from owning productive land. From such wealth all the civil liberties flow. As to the bailouts, the finance sector sector is a huge multi trillion black hole. Making the creditors whole can only hyperinflate the money supply. As to bailing out Detroit, so long as we live under a free trade regime the rescue package would be like heating a house with broken windows all round. The sad thing about our service economy is even the most efficient fiscal stimulus, putting the most money in the hands of people with the least propensity to save is more likely to stimulate the Asian economies to greater benefit than our own. Yes there are complaints from neoliberals over protectionist sentiments, but that issue is a dead one anyway as America will be too broke to buy any imports. This insistence upon a flat earth economics for a nation so dependent upon imports is either inspired by infinite stupidity or pure evil. As to our presidents, they have acted as dictators in especial vigor after the inside job of the JFK assassination. Please to the death bed confession of E. Howard Hunt. So far I have heard little from our present junta about overturning the Patriot Acts or withdrawing from Iraq and Afghanistan. I expect to see an ever increasing timeline for troop withdrawal. The inside job of 9-11 was meant to change the culture toward tighter dictatorship. This a secular trend that is “bipartisan”. I expect the current bird cage liner president to implement the next part of the grand edifice. The bubble was a conscious execution to implode the economy. All that is hellish for the abjects of this planet was planned years ago.

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By tropicgirl, March 11, 2009 at 6:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If anyone is still looking here. at this hour.. C-Span has a fantastic scenario going on with replaying Dennis Kucinich chairing a hearing with Kashkari in the answer seat. Its great. Some people come home from work and watch C-Span. What can I say?  And Kashkari said he cleared his calendar for the day. This could be good.

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By tropicgirl, March 11, 2009 at 6:22 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I had no idea and am happy he is still with us.  Thanks for the blog on that.

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By Folktruther, March 11, 2009 at 6:14 pm Link to this comment

I agree, Cyrena: great economic analysis, Louise!

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By cyrena, March 11, 2009 at 4:13 pm Link to this comment

re:By Louise, March 11 at 5:37 pm

Louise,

Dang you’re GOOD!! On the lessons of the economic/bank crash, and in a format simple and straight-forward enough for ANYBODY to understand. (well, almost).

This is another keeper for me to share along with everyone I know, so that they TOO, can understand HOW this happened, and WHO was involved, and what we MUST do now, to prevent exactly what you’ve predicted, and that which would be inevitable if we don’t get help from the Government, -anarchy-.

I’m still very worried about the fact that so many of us are still oblivious to that very likely probability.

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By mlb, March 11, 2009 at 3:32 pm Link to this comment

Right on!! to all the commenters who have recognized Scheer’s and Gingrich’s error and pointed out that this is fascism we’re seeing.  It bears no resemblance to socialism.

Fascism/corporatism is the merging of corporate and state power.  The big problem with that arrangement is that it leaves the people with essentially no power.  It’s such an unfair and anti-democratic system that it can only be sustained either through totalitarian brutality, or, as in our system, by hoodwinking the populace into believing that the government is obeying our will and has only our best interests at heart.

But ignore Obama’s lofty rhetoric and instead watch what he and Congress do, and it couldn’t be more obvious.  The Wall St. banker crooks are calling the shots and, as one might reasonably suspect, trying to save their own asses even as they screw us and the rest of the world along with us.  As their P.R. man, Obama’s job is to convince us of just the opposite, that our elected officials are in control, that they’re as outraged as we are, and are working hard to save us.

We have a great constitution, but we desperately need to change our laws to remove the ability of money to buy power.  If we don’t, it’s just going to be more of the same…or worse.

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By Paul_GA, March 11, 2009 at 3:29 pm Link to this comment

Let me admit that I could live with socialism IF this country were at peace with the world (living the Jeffersonian ideal of “peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations—entangling alliances with none”). But if the point of the changes being made in the American economy is to continue the cruel and stupid policy of interventionism ... I hope it fails miserably.

If Obama & Co. really wanted to help the economy, they’d end the stupid wars, bring everyone home, cut the military budget severely, abolish the Department of “Homeland Defense”, break all “entangling alliances” and announce that the USA is changing over to a grand strategy of defense and not offense. Without THESE “changes we can believe in”, I see this country eventually wearing itself out, no matter what’s done about the floundering economy.

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By Louise, March 11, 2009 at 2:37 pm Link to this comment

Junk: Stuff that has no value.
Bad: Failing to reach an acceptable standard.
Asset: Something that has real value.
Derivatives: Contracts that gamble on the future prices of assets.
Virtual: An imagined thing whose existence is suggested by unprovable evidence.
Bond: Selling debt as future income.

CDS, credit default swap: An agreement that allows the transfer of third party credit risk from one party to a counterparty. One party in the swap is a lender and faces credit risk from a third party. The counterparty in the swap agrees to insure that risk in exchange for an insurance premium. If the third party defaults, the insurance must purchase from the insured the defaulted asset, remaining interest on the debt, and the principal.

Stupid: An action or decision made that always leads to failure.

OK, now that we understand the terms, lets identify the insanity.

Banks and non-bank institutions created BAD ASSETS. Investors bought and sold those bad assets. Each new re-sale increased VIRTUAL value on those bad assets until DERIVATIVES exceeded their original value by as much as 25-times. Moving those bad assets to keep profits rolling in, required insurance that offered guarantee to investors they couldn’t lose. The CDS insured bad assets against default. And was then sold as a certificate with VIRTUAL value.

AIG turned to credit reporting agencies who created phony credit data for the bad asset and the bad CDS. The same credit rating agencies who rate our credit worthiness, devalued their value by stamping AAA on every BAD credit swap AIG created. And AIG created $450 trillion worth of CDS certificates.

Banks and non-banks maximized their profits by gambling away their capital on CDS JUNK instead of maintaining reserves. CDS value lost credibility as insurance against bad assets, so prices began to tumble and it became impossible for companies to raise money.

The size of AIG’s $450 trillion derivatives market was the direct result of GREENSPANS easy-credit monetary policies. And reshaping the markets according to Greenspans brain-child, the “STRUCTURED FINANCE” model. Which allowed banks to run off-balance sheets that created money out of thin air.

Phony guarantees, in the form of credit default swaps were simply another SCAM to avoid maintaining enough capital to cover a rush of defaults.

In a DEREGULATED market, the Federal Reserve cannot control the creation of credit by non-banks. So, as the fraud unfolds, a steady rise in foreclosures, means the DERIVATIVES levered on the original assets have vanished. Trillions of dollars in VIRTUAL capital have disappeared. In other words, where there is no REAL money there is NO money!

Bush and Paulson HAD to know this was going on. But instead of trying to control, they decided to delay. Maybe they really believed the “market” would correct itself absent regulation, but that has proven impossible!

The repubs cannot understand the concept that their “no regulation, free market, no government” model simply doesn’t work! Because their model doesn’t factor in the human elements of stupidity, greed and idiocy, leading to complete insanity!

When VIRTUAL capital evaporates, demand for goods and services goes down, unemployment goes up, banks fold, and the economy stalls. In this case, going far beyond our own borders.

Because the CDS backed assets were rated safe, thousands of people, towns, cities, governments and countries bought into the scam. Our conservative financial elders sat on their hands while AIG, non-banks, and similar institutions across the globe created VIRTUAL money off of our JUNK ASSETS!

That’s when governments HAVE to step in and do something to keep people working and sustain business activity. Otherwise there will be anarchy. Nobody wants to sleep on the street. They need a helping hand from government.

Big government, taking charge after years and years of living with NO ONE in charge!

If that’s Socialism, I say BRING IT ON!

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By Folktruther, March 11, 2009 at 1:42 pm Link to this comment

It is pieces like this that have made the American people so deluded, clueless and braindead.  socialism is the transferrence of the power decisons of political democracy to economic democracy as well, in the interessts of the population.  What scheer is discribing, as he well knows, is the exact opposite of socialism.  since he is a liberal and identifices with capitalism.

the American people are most effectively deluded by the pseudo-progressive media and truthers, since they narrow the truth consensus to restrict the range of mainstream opinions and ideas.  Currently they support Obama by attempting to get progressive rank and file to support his Bushite policies.  The mainstream debate is a pseudo-debate, both sides supporting conservative oositions with different rhetoric.

What has been called socialism in the 20th century was a siege socialism, the need to industralize while constantly under the threat of attack from capitalist powers.  the initial industrialization, primitive accumulation, has always been a struggle under both capitlism and socialism, since it involves getting the population from the farms to the towns under conditions of often extreme privation.

In China, the initial revolution morphed into a party capitalism where the communest party has nationalized a third of the economy, including the banks.  there the governent controsl the corporations while in the US the corporations control the government.  Neither is socialism but the Chinese model is much more efficient than the Western model, and far more beneficial to the populaation. 

In china polls of shown that 90% of the people think that China is headed in the right direction while in the US 80% of the people think that the US is headed in the wrong direction.  and yet the US claims, and people believe, that the US is more democratic than China, because their view of democracy is limited to voting in elections.

Least humane of all economies is the American model.  Obama, like Bush, is feeding the banks and corporations trillions of dollars of public money without gaining control of the economy.  What will result will be an even greater increase in class inequality, the exact opposite of socialism.  And the economic inequality will transfer into power inequality, with the US becoming a despotism under the guise of a traditonal bourgeois democracy.  What Scheer is describing is a postmodern form of fascism.

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By TAO Walker, March 11, 2009 at 1:41 pm Link to this comment

“Socialism schmo-cialism!”  Having apparently succeeded in their “project” aimed-at reducing most of theamericanpeople to rabble, their wannabe owner/operators are theirownselfs reduced to punching the few buttons they have left to “rouse” their various CONstituencies to fits of pique over make-believe “assaults” (on effectively abolished “liberties”), orgies of anger at straw-men ‘du jour’, and paroxysms of fear for half-lives already mortgaged in-perpetuity to the plutoligarch manipulators of the “global” pyramid scam.

Who here really expects Robert Scheer, or anyone else in his still relatively comfortable position, to go anywhere near that cesspool….nevermind daring to stir-up the fetid reek of it in front of the “paying customers”?  It’s so much more self-satisfying (and “safe”) to keep pumping hot-air into the shredding envelope the pundits’ sponsors still believe might carry them above and away-from the hell-on-earth to which they’ve CONsigned their milling herds of suddenly “surplus” LABOR.  Talk about your “....best laid plans.”

The funny thing is, from here in Indian Country it’s easy to see that america, and all things american, amount to nothing more than one small bursting bubble of overwrought “self-esteam” (apologies to speakers of Espanish) on the surface of “....a tempest in a tea pot,” which is all there is to the entire “global” sitcom/soap-opera now nearing the pre-scripted end of its final “cliffhanger” episode.  As their virtual world-o’-hurt goes totally (and quite appropriatley) “digital,” will it still come as a SURPRISE! when the domesticated peoples’ last “image” of their captivity will be the fickle middle-finger of fate fading to black before their re-opening eyes?

This old Savage can’t wait to see the look on those no-longer cosmetically masked faces.

HokaHey!

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By silexus, March 11, 2009 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama will make sure that government of the Corporations, by the Corporations for the Corporations will not perish from this earth.

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By prole, March 11, 2009 at 12:45 pm Link to this comment

“What I don’t understand is how in the world they can blame this startling turn of events on Barack Obama”….not surprisingly – Scheer can never see how anyone can ever blame St. Barack for anything. And that, once again dear readers, is the underlying message of this predictably partisan post from Obama cadre Scheer. “The vast majority of money allocated so far on President Obama’s watch is an extension of Bush’s banking bailout”…which, of course, righteous Barack is perfectly at liberty to amend, modify or nullify – if he himself wasn’t an “extension of Bush” (even more so in foreign policy) and hadn’t agreed to it prior to taking office. Nonetheless, by posing Obama contra Gingrich it helps to serve Scheer’s continuing partisan propaganda offensive on behalf of Obama as progressive. Scheer, in his tireless efforts to square the circle in this regard must as always gloss over the obvious contradictions and try and have it both ways by waffling that he “certainly don’t want to defend the bailout and personally think the banks and stockbrokers deserve to go belly up, but what does that mess have to do with Obama, who was in college when the Reagan Revolution launched the deregulation that allowed Wall Street to run wild?” Oh well, it just might have something to do with the unblemished Obama, who no longer is in college but, for better or worse, is in the Oval Office. Not Newt Gingrich, not Tim Geithner, not right-wingers on Fox News (apparently Scheer’s favorite source of ideas) but Barack Obama is in the West Wing. Granted, the faultless Obama wasn’t even born when Harry Truman, (who had his own faults), after becoming president, put up his famous little desk plaque, ‘The Buck Stops Here’, so maybe it’s unfair to suggest that that has any relevance, either. “Didn’t Obama inherit the current financial meltdown less than two months ago from the Republicans” – sure, doesn’t every president inherit everything from his predecessor? Is that an excuse for his corporate-directed agenda? For his aggressive foreign policies? It’s truly bizarre that Scheer should then turn ideology on it’s head by seeking to defend his idol Obama by proving that Obama’s critics would have done nothing differently. Obama’s critics on the right (or even farther right than he himself), that is – rather than confronting what Obama’s critics on the left are “carping” about. Nor has Scheer “demanded anything more in the way of accountability from those Wall Street swindlers” - now supported by his hero Obama - “than had the Bush administration.” “So what we have here is” progressivism “without even the pretense of a soul” a la Robert Scheer. What he has “picked up on instead is that Obama’s tax cuts provide some redistribution of income to favor the rapidly disappearing middle class at the expense of” a more robust program of redistribution of wealth and power for all, including the working class, and foreign colonial populations. “Which brings us back to Gingrich’s complaint that Obama is importing European socialism”. “If that means a system of governance in which a robust [American] middle class is rewarded” in the ‘progressive’ fashion of Scheer …well then, let’s get a more expansive - and less partisan - definition.

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By Mark, March 11, 2009 at 12:34 pm Link to this comment
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Ittalrac

Re: “...rioting in the street…”

Yet another reason the oligarchs allowed Obama to ascend to the POTUS:

They are hoping that as a person of color, he will appeal to, and be better able to quell the rioting by, the poor in general, and minorities, specifically.

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By Hulk2008, March 11, 2009 at 11:41 am Link to this comment

Eric Prentis has it nailed -  it’s fascism, not socialism. 
  And actually the only examples we have of actual socialism in practice are the scandinavian democracies.  Funny how in a country (ours) made up entirely of immigrants from elsewhere we are encouraged by the likes of Newt to hate the countries our forebears came from.  And what does Newt actually know about business or finance anyway? He has taught and been in government most of his life.  If he was so successful in business, where is his business now?

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By Paul_GA, March 11, 2009 at 11:22 am Link to this comment

Begging your pardon, Tropicgirl, but Gore Vidal is not dead yet.

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By tropicgirl, March 11, 2009 at 10:50 am Link to this comment

Gingrich got it wrong again.

The US was never so privatized as it is today. He simple yells out the opposite of what is going on, enough times, so he even believes it and then Rush spews it out.

(The late) Gore Vidal writing in the 1980’s made the observation that Reagonomics was nothing more than the expression in policy terms of the fact that…

“The US government prefers that public money go not to the people but to big business. The result is a unique society in which we have free enterprise for the poor and socialism for the rich.”

Most of the neoconservatives in the United States advocate globalization and the neoliberal economic model. Which is privatization.

This is what Obama is. A neoliberal and a neocon are basically the same now so you shouldn’t use the words liberal and conservative at all. He never really believed that we should stop nation-building, stop bad trade agreements, have single payer healthcare (the whole world has a form of it) and stop the financial and business world from ripping off its own people, and so on.

It was truly your imagination and nothing more.

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By P. T., March 11, 2009 at 10:45 am Link to this comment

Capitalists like to socialize their costs (such as government-financed R&D) and their losses (when investments go sour).  The profits they want for themselves.

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By jackchandler, March 11, 2009 at 10:29 am Link to this comment

Misuse of the word Socialism?

No different that when the “left” and or “right” abuse the term Laissez-faire capitalism.  A concept this nation has never known.  The federal monster from its inception has been allied with corporations just as its mercantilist founders intended.

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By felicity, March 11, 2009 at 10:28 am Link to this comment

Eric Prentis is correct.  Fascism is a system in which large corporations become extensions of government and authority becomes centralized (in our case the Executive Branch.)

‘Socialism’ has simply replaced ‘liberal’ as the pejorative of the day.  Sticking a label on something guarantees that the thing not only becomes the label, all thinking and reasoning on what is labelled is immediately aborted.  (Madison Ave. has made zillions off this phenomenon.)

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By Eric L. Prentis, March 11, 2009 at 10:11 am Link to this comment

The government giving money to the rich bankers/corporations is not socialism, it is fascism.

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By ittalrac, March 11, 2009 at 10:07 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

None of this has anything to do with “socialism.” The word’s been totally divorced from its original meaning, since the radical right has used it for years as a substitute for “communism,” which outlasted its usefulness as a pejorative years ago. For the conservative radicals, “socialism” simply means anything that helps common people enjoy a better standard of living. Real socialism means, among other things, that power is decentralized (not fused in an oligarchical concentration of bankers, financial institutions, and corporate CEOs). And, frankly, I don’t get Mr. Scheer when he writes the following: “But what I don’t understand is how in the world they can blame this startling turn of events on Barack Obama.” REALLY? If that’s the case, then Scheer must not understand the more fundamental fact that the center of world power is financial, not governmental. Scheer seems to think that Obama is operating independently of the financial oligarchy. He’s not: he’s RESPONDING to it. Doesn’t Scheer realize that Obama would never have received all that banking and Wall Street money in the first place if the oligarchs hadn’t WANTED him to win? OK, they might have preferred John McCain on strictly ideological grounds, but even the oligarchs realized he didn’t have a chance owing to the rock-bottom ratings of the current Republican party. So all their money went to Obama instead. Meanwhile, what of Ronald Reagan, whom Scheer also cites. Is it really true that “the Reagan Revolution launched the deregulation that allowed Wall Street to run wild?”? Of course not, unless we view Ronald Reagan with tunnel vision and ignore everything that surrounded him. The point is simply that Reagan got to the White House for the same reason Bush and Obama did: the oligarchy wanted him there. The so-called “Reagan Revolution” was simply a more radical phase of the Bankers Revolution that started back in 1913 with the creation of the Federal Reserve. As a number of progressive economists have pointed out, the Federal Reserve is not a FEDERAL (government) institution, but a PRIVATE one, which, together with the Treasury, regulates the amount of money in circulation at any given time. If the FED Chairman wants to contract or expand the money supply, he can do so simply by phoning the Treasurer and giving him the go-ahead. In this context, let’s remember the famous statement by Mayer Amschel Rothschild: “Give me control of a nation’s money and I care not who makes the laws.” In other words, when the banks ostensibly “ASK” the President for a bailout, they know damn well they can FORCE a bailout through a combination of bribery, threats, and, if necessary, “trial by media” (a media which the oligarchs also own and control). In short, Obama is doing what the bankers want him to do. He doesn’t have any other choice unless he wants to commit political suicide. Also, Obama’s critics know very well this isn’t “socialism.” Again, they’re simply using the term as a cheap and sleazy swear-word.
So let’s drop all this nonsense about socialism. This country is not run by the politicians, but rather by the international banking cartel, and the only REAL government is the oligarchical government that hires politicians as “useful idiots” to carry out its PRIVATE objectives. We the People aren’t even on their radar screen, except as a potential collective nuisance in the event we finally get angry enough to start rioting in the streets (something that’s already happened in Iceland and France, to name just two countries that have already gone belly-up in this global exercise in misanthropy and genocide

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By wildflower, March 11, 2009 at 9:56 am Link to this comment

Re: thebeerdoctor

Dailykos also shares some thoughts about this issue:

The Truth About HR 875:
“The Bill That Will Kill All Farms and Eat Your Babies”

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2009/3/10/205950/833/850/706976

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By grumpynykr, March 11, 2009 at 9:48 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Excuse me, but what is taking place is NOT SOCIALISM, but the taxpayer assuming the bad debts of banks/hedge funds.

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By P. T., March 11, 2009 at 9:23 am Link to this comment

What we are seeing is kind of like fascism:  government intervention to, first and foremost, save rich capitalists (Wall Street).

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By mill, March 11, 2009 at 9:19 am Link to this comment

Once more, the “socialist” label is in play ...but instead of right-wingers pushing it regardless of reality, now it is one of the most thoughtful writers on the left.  Tsk, since when did Mr. Scheer take his talking points from the RNC and Rush?

Obama is not a socialist.  The dramatic intervention in the economy is not socialism either.  It’s bad enough that the right wing abuses the term, it’s sad when the left joins in.

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By thebeerdoctor, March 11, 2009 at 8:57 am Link to this comment

wildflower makes a very good point. Illusion seems to be the only thing anyone cares to cling to. Why else would you be asked your thoughts on the American Dream?

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By thebeerdoctor, March 11, 2009 at 8:53 am Link to this comment

Due to distractions, there are two corrections I did not apply to post. That is: “Barack Obama can not believe” and “doing way” rather than doing awaiting. Sorry about that.

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By wildflower, March 11, 2009 at 8:52 am Link to this comment

Fox News really needs to get a grip on reality.  The Reagan Revolution was a flop. The only thing “deregulation” has accomplished is looting and massive fraud – BIG TIME . . . And what were these Reagan revolutionaries thinking in the first place?  Did they really believe bankers and Wall Streeters were “angels” who would be incapable of cheating and committing fraud?

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By thebeerdoctor, March 11, 2009 at 8:46 am Link to this comment

Back on topic, the recent interventions of the federal government into the financial (for lack of a more appropriate word) industry, seems to prove what some renegade investors have been saying all along, that markets must and need to fail in order for a market to exist. It was not long ago that the multi-billion dollar fix was proposed, to prevent the Dow Jones Industrial Average from slipping below 8000… well, what a wonderful soft landing! The truth of it is, no one wants to disclose the fact that the entire system is but a rotting illusion kept viable by President Obama and the enablers over at the Treasury Department. Barack Obama can believe that these financial wizards that he looked up to are basically worthless. Now they move forward, hoping to bring the country back to prosperity of the Clinton years. A prosperity that was also an illusion, by the way, created through false stock option accounting practices, which enabled the Dot Com Bubble. These new economy grand masters were so proud of their accomplishment; doing awaiting with all those old school restrictions such as Glass-Steagall, which stood in the way of their creative and new financial instruments.
Another way to look at this: it was like a machine shop, where the supervisors in charge, decided for the sake of increased production, to do away with all the safety guards.
It does not matter if the workers get hurt.
So it is beyond me, how people who could recklessly endanger the financial system of the people, can now be called upon to repair it.

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By Max Shields, March 11, 2009 at 8:19 am Link to this comment

GoldenT,

I agree with your assessment. (The faux argument of Gingrich is just a red herring, corporate socialism? How do you spell oxymoron (accent on moron for anyone who plays along with this imbecilic argument).

But, it took over a year for anyone to acknowlege the “obvious” meltdown. Now it will take time (perhaps not as long) for the apparentness of this total bankruptcy to be unsavagable.

I don’t think the system and minds that got us here have the capacity to move in the direction needed. I would expect revolts, perhaps a coordinated movement to overturn what we have. It may not work because the system continues to hold all the cards.

Do what you can where you are. Provide the change locally. It may change the dominant narrative…and who knows.

For sure the breaks will be coming to all this. It is unsustainable in every sense of that word. It can’t be “grown” out of, and to do so brings about the abrupt collapse. Forcing money into it won’t do it. Money is simply a means to value goods and services and the resources and capital used to make those happen. Money is NOT the problem or solution in any real economic way.

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By GoldenT, March 11, 2009 at 8:06 am Link to this comment

What this mess has to do with Obama is simple. The opportunity to reverse perilous conditions perpetuating inequity is but one giant bankruptcy reorganization away, sending Wall Street, the City and Paris into the dustbin of history. Yet, thus far, he has shown no will to do so, despite how glaringly OBVIOUS is the bankruptcy of the entire financial and economic arrangement these centers support. Thus, an extraordinary opportunity to send a hopelessly unsalvagable, securities-based enterprise packing in peacetime (the operative word here) is fading by the day. The longer the likes of Tim Geithner, Christi Romer, Paul Volcker, Larry Summers, et al, are tolerated, the more likely is Calamity. “Socialism” is the least of our worries.

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By Ron Dahlke, March 11, 2009 at 8:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Here is what I really think:
We, the American people during a political campaign, oh, wow, we really let it all hang out. The politician/candidates give us all kinds of truth, with promises to do something about the problems that were started by the previous administration, like President Kennedy did when he, unlike Nixon and not under an oath of secrecy, could say all kinds of tough things about how he would handle the situation with Fidel Castro’s Cuba, then turn coat and refuse to militarily support the CIA’s little 1,400 man brigade at the Bay of Pigs.

The above reference to JFK, Sr. is just one example of candidates making promises so that they can get elected, but when they are in office and the corporately connected “handlers” make their connections, and the financial poiwer behind those connections known to the new president, we wonder why he seems not to be so committed to the positions he took only a few months before!. We see Obama today having come on strong in the first few weeks of his new administration. Then, we see the results of real power as it imposes itself on him.

The American people’s government has been run through the oligarchic (“old boys”) network for many decades now. President Woodrow Wilson even said so almost 100 years ago. Every president since Wilson also said so. International bankers are the ones whose money the US Internal Revenue (notice the word, “Internal,” meaning not external) cannot touch.
They are the international banking “cabal”  spoken of by past presidents.

The above bankers are the real enemies of true democracy. Think about it: If people today were not being lied to by their own government (under the aegis of these bankers) would they vote for the rip off of their own futures by their own government that pays the international bankers’ front-men on Wall Street with $300 Billion over the past six months, signed into law by George W. Bush? And, what good did all that tax-payer largesse do? It padded the pick-pockets of Wall Street firms, and did zilch to stem the tide of bank failures and FDIC takeovers.

the big boys of Wall Street stuck it into their unregulated pockets through pay schemes. Can rich people be trusted not to grab what amounts to welfare for the rich, while consequently causing the working classes of America to lose their jobs with employers that made their money with local and state government contracts that existed because of federal money that was no longer there, thanks to Bush and Cheney?? Of course not. They were too used to taking peoples’ money by promising stock-holders and bond holders huge profits, and at high fee costs to the individual investors.

I would say that Obama would be better able to give ALL of the federal handouts to average citizens who would spend it on immediate needs that they have gone without. That would bring corporations back to hiring once again. That would, as happened with Bill Clinton, cause people to spend far more than their unemployment checks allow them to now. Less unemployment monies outlayed by the state governments, would free up more state monies for highway and infrastructure repairs, causing more millions of workers to leave unemployment roles, while paying taxes.

The overall net-effect would produce the kind of job creation that Clinton experienced. Clinton worked to do what Clinton did, while Republicans snooped into Clinton’s bedroom looking for a Monica that BobDole knew was there (She left the apartment next door to Dole to go to work for Clinton in 1993. He says he did not know she would go to work for one of the world’s at that time best known womanizers.)

The Republicans were afriad of Clinton’s agenda, knowing that it was very successful during Clinton’s 20 years as Governor of Arkansas. They didn’t give a rat’s—- about the nearly 4 million, newly unemployed former home owners who lived in tent cities across America. That was at the end of a previous Bush administration.

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By psickmind fraud, March 11, 2009 at 8:01 am Link to this comment

Of course, we’re still not hearing any suggestion that these companies that are “too big to fail” be pared down.  Instead, they’re using bailout money to buy failed or failing competitors and become mega too big to fail.
I’d like to see a return to local and regional businesses instead of national and international corps.  Companies that weren’t so heavily debt-financed.  I’ve worked for a couple mom and pop companies that made the transition to corporate entities, and were much worse for it.

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By thebeerdoctor, March 11, 2009 at 8:00 am Link to this comment

In a small attempt to stir up something on the blogosphere, I would like to ask why the Monsanto corporation is in favor of HR 875? The same Monsanto corporation who saw fit to embed BHG into the food chain. That same BHG that retailers have voluntarily refused to carry, from Safeway to Chipotle chains, to Costco and Kroger.
Why is Tyson foods in favor of this legislation? Could it be that their “all natural” chickens come up puny when compared to non-hormone and chemical free poultry of Amish farms?
Look at the entities in favor of this legislation, then look at the burden it imposes. Because some giant corporate peanut processor ground up rats and created poison, now the independent apple orchid must suffer.
I do not know what is more ghastly, the loss of liberty, or the enabling of the illusion that the government is here to keep the people safe. But like all government solutions, this fits a classic pattern. Since it can not enforce the existing food safety laws, the obvious answer is cook up some more.
Shame on them all.

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By Celainea, March 11, 2009 at 7:13 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

When government pumps money into big business and banks, which the government is still letting those who helped to create our present economic crisis continue to control,isn’t that fascism not socialism?

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By cocostar, March 11, 2009 at 6:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Gingrich is very good at describing the situation after the fact. Lately he sits in a Washington think tank and supposedly charts out the best way for the country to sail. Others, including myself would wonder if anything he has to say is even worth listening too. Apparently the cost of these stink tanks is a total waste. It very well could be this is exactly what the so called conservative party had in mind over the last eight years. Their now relying on spin to pass the buck on Obama and his party for the total failure of our economic system and war crimes their profits are responsible for. Its plain to see that this party has turned into a party controlled by special interest tyrants that have managed to highjack the government with their corporate stranglehold and a network of special interest wealth and power which they label as a new world order. Our forefathers in the early days of this country warned us about corporate monsters and the military industrial complex and getting involved with the rest of the world in their conflicts. Every conflict we have been in since the formation of the C.I.A. has been caused by special interest or is a result of the conflicts they have instigated. American debt,unemployment,drugs,and the economic condition of America are a direct result of these conflicts. They could also be linked to a failed two party system and the greedy tyrants involved.

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By Max Shields, March 11, 2009 at 6:25 am Link to this comment

TheBeerdoctor: “Arguments will continue to rage over how much of this mess President Obama inherited.”

That’s fairly simple. It is the USA economic and plutocractically run system which created what we have. And Obama is intimately part of that and is in fact attempting to save it.

Hand-offs don’t excuse the participants.

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By SamSnedegar, March 11, 2009 at 5:54 am Link to this comment

Newt may from time to time hit on some statement that is either truthful or seems to be, but his m.o. is to say whatever he thinks he needs to say to convince an audience that his position is absolutely right. The truth has nothing to do with what Gingrinch says. Oh, he rarely tells palpable lies, but then he never falls in love with the truth either.

What is the truth here? Private corporation executive3s have had government (Cheney) collusion in screwing up the normal checks and balances of the private enterprise system, and the government has had to take over the candy store to keep the children from burning it down.

If that be “socialism” then make the most of it, sir. Another example would be in firemen setting up a perimeter around a burn site so that the public is safe from shooting flames and falling debris. Why, by God, they are interfering with your right to go where you choose, are they not?

A question that ought to be asked: who pays the deposit insurance when the government is broke and unable to pay it because it has ten trillion dollars of debt? If FDIC fails along with Fannie and Freddy, then what happens?

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By Lamplighter, March 11, 2009 at 5:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Newt is right, our government is soul-less. It was a lesson imposed on it by the corporatists who took over and imposed their soul-less, immoral and ethics-less agenda on a country they saw as their personal candystore for wealth acquisition.

Now that we are free of the dark side, we can make government reflect our values and our moral compass, not theirs.When we do, we will be a great nation again.

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By Paul_GA, March 11, 2009 at 4:42 am Link to this comment

Well, BeerDoctor, as the mantra of the Obama administration seems to be, “Never let a good crisis go to waste!”

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By thebeerdoctor, March 11, 2009 at 4:14 am Link to this comment

Arguments will continue to rage over how much of this mess President Obama inherited. But of much more importance is the recent introduction of HR 875, that legislatively ties food production to the Department of Homeland Security. This exposes the fact that the Democrats are equally adept at using fear and crisis to enable yet another layer of fascist control, all in the name of safety.

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