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Obama Pulls a Clinton

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Posted on Jan 19, 2011
AP / Charles Dharapak

President Obama introduces Gene Sperling, left, as the new director of the National Economic Council while speaking about the economy at Thompson Creek Manufacturing, which makes custom replacement windows, on Jan. 7 in Landover, Md.


Q & A - Live Chat with Robert Scheer


A live Q & A session related to this column took place on January 20, 2011 at 11:00 am PT.

Click here to view the transcript.


By Robert Scheer

Here we go again. When Bill Clinton suffered an electoral reversal after his first two years in office, he abruptly embraced the corporate money guys who had financed his congressional opposition in an effort to purchase a second term. On Tuesday in his Wall Street Journal Op-Ed piece, Barack Obama veered sharply down that same course, trumpeting his executive order “ ... to remove outdated regulations that stifle job creation and make our economy less competitive. …”

He employed the same “creating a 21st-century regulatory system” rationalization used by Clinton when he signed off on the sweeping deregulation legislation that unleashed the Wall Street greed that ended up being the biggest job-killer since the Great Depression. “Over the (past) seven years, we have tried to modernize the economy,” Clinton enthused as he signed the Financial Services Modernization Act that repealed key New Deal legislation, adding, “And today what we are doing is modernizing the financial services industry, tearing down those antiquated laws and granting banks significant new authority.” Modernizing was the propaganda constant, as in the Commodity Futures Modernization Act that Clinton signed, thus shielding financial derivatives from any government regulation.

That deregulation, as Obama concedes in his WSJ column, led to “a lack of proper oversight and transparency (that) nearly led to the collapse of the financial markets and a full-scale depression.” But Obama now promises that his deregulation efforts will be more sensibly targeted and will “bring order to regulations that have become a patchwork of overlapping rules, the result of tinkering by administrations and legislatures of both parties and influence of special interests in Washington over decades.”

When he wrote that he intends to accomplish this revamp “with more input from experts, businesses and ordinary citizens,” did he have in mind his two new key White House advisers who were the most effective advocates for those special interests? Tom Donilon, Obama’s national security adviser, was the Washington lobbyist for the housing behemoth Fannie Mae, which will cost taxpayers $700 billion because of its marketing of toxic derivatives. Obama’s new Chief of Staff William Daley was the lead Washington representative for a similarly afflicted JPMorgan Chase. These are the folks, along with many other Wall Street alums in this administration, who will oversee the latest update of already weakened regulations.

The first target will be the administration’s puny efforts to protect consumers: “The move is the latest effort by the White House to repair relations with corporate America,” the Wall Street Journal’s report on Obama’s column stated, “Business leaders say an explosion in new regulations stemming from the president’s health-care and financial regulatory overhauls has, along with the sluggish economy, made them reluctant to spend on expansion and hiring.  Companies are sitting on nearly $2 trillion in cash and liquid assets, the most since World War II.”

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This is a case of corporate blackmail pure and simple. The economy is sluggish because of a housing crisis that shows no sign of improvement. It stands history on its head to blame government financial regulations that had worked splendidly for six decades for the meltdown or the failure to fix a housing market that is the key to improved consumer spending.

Fixing housing would require efforts to keep the 50 million Americans whose mortgages are underwater in their homes. But the government bailouts under both George W. Bush and Obama have not required any significant cramp-down or reappraisal of mortgages by banks to enable people to stay in their homes. Instead the Fed and Treasury have flooded the banks and top corporations with cheap money and bailouts but, in the classic problem of pushing on a string, the corporate ingrates are hoarding that money.

Obama, and the party he heads, failed to provide a progressive narrative during November’s election holding the financial elite that created this mess responsible. The key issue is not big government or onerous regulation but rather transparency and fraud prevention. When you are evicted, it is a government agent, a marshal or sheriff, who will force you out, so shouldn’t the government also be involved in assuring that the consumer is protected by a properly vetted contract? Instead the U.S. Chamber of Commerce spearheaded the marketing of an alternative narrative, as successful as it was devious, by Republican candidates that held regulation—rather than deregulation—responsible for the mess. Now Obama seems poised to join their ranks. As the WSJ reported:

“On Feb. 7, Mr. Obama will visit the U.S. Chamber of Commerce—a chief opponent to his administration’s regulatory approach—for a discussion on how the White House can work with the group to create jobs. The efforts are designed to give companies more confidence in the president’s stewardship of the economy, and bolster his re-election prospects among a wealthy constituency not traditionally allied with Democrats.”

A constituency that Daley, Obama’s new chief of staff, can faithfully represent, having received $5 million a year from JPMorgan Chase. And so ends the season of hope for the less wealthy constituency traditionally allied with Democrats.

Click here to check out Robert Scheer’s new 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.

 

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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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, January 27, 2011 at 9:11 pm Link to this comment

More ardee blah.

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By ardee, January 27, 2011 at 8:32 pm Link to this comment

Hey, Martha/Thpomas…still aplies:

Do you really,truly believe that bullshite rants like this one, accusations so insanely inaccurate given the body of my posts here, bring you any credibility? You are already an object of ridicule here with your obvious dual personality posts, ones so similar as to be either from Siamese twins or a conflicted personality.

I wonder what you hope to achieve here when you are already ignored by the majority here? You have posted, under the two guises, opposing opinions many times. Not at all unusual for someone who cannot even decide on a gender.

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, January 27, 2011 at 7:58 pm Link to this comment

TAO Walker,

savage blah.

dohiyi

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By TAO Walker, January 27, 2011 at 5:56 pm Link to this comment

“MarthaA” just keeps gassing at us like a FEMA trailerhouse-afire….and someone who might really benefit from a big dose of cyber-“BEANO.”

HokaHey!

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, January 27, 2011 at 11:36 am Link to this comment

Rest assured ardie, that I gave your post and TAO Walker’s post all of the consideration they deserved, Blah!

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By johncp, January 27, 2011 at 8:37 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Norman Harman
You say, pick two criteria: vote for progressive candidates, and “vote against the money.”
But you have to remove the “influence” of money in politics; voting against that influence, is putting the cart before the horse.  The candidates made available to you, have already been chosen, based on their subservience to money, over all other considerations.  You’ll find the candidates you’re looking for, but their loss is already an accomplished fact, long before you get the opportunity to vote for them.  As things are, it’s inconceivable that candidates, certainly seeking higher offices, could violate this principle.  This is the reason why I am resolutely against Obama, not because he’s in the pockets of powerful monied interests (they all are), but because he turned against candidates in his own party, to sell what he knew to be a lie: that “change” was coming to America.  I voted for Hillary, then, symbolically, for McKinney.  I was resolutely for Hillary for the presidency, again, not because I had any illusion that she resisted the influence of money in her campaign, but because she was easily the best (the smartest, the cleverest, the hardest working, the most serious, etc.)candidate we had in the dem party.  If, for no other reason, than Obama’s silent endorsement of largely succcessful efforts to make Hillary out to be a racist, Obama became a detestable creature that would put, not only Wall Street largesse above all else, but personal ambition, pursued at any cost to others, as well.  Inasmuch as I don’t believe we have the option to vote for a candidate unmolested by big money in this country, what remains for me, is to vote from among those candidates I consider best able to do the job.  But, if I’m not even allowed to vote for the best candidate I can get, in my party, due to the manipulations exerted over the political machine by powerful, invisible, undemocratic intersts, it’s time for me to opt out of voting for the presidency altogether.  Of course, Obama, and his ilk, can be made, once in office, to seem to be “accomplishing” something.  But what we must pay for these accomplishments is vastly greater, than what we gain from them.  We’re all led by the nose, by the relentless media carnival, to buy, buy, buy, which distracts us away from serious thought about the human losses we’re all suffering.  When Obama tells you about his “accomplishments,” ask him for a profit “and loss” statement.

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kulu's avatar

By kulu, January 25, 2011 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment

Not at all. I might have given up hope but I certainly have not given up the fight.(A bit odd I know but true.) Still apart from South America where gains seem to be being made the left is basically losing ground. I see myself as a realist, nothing more nor less and because I fear for the future of civilization itself I am not content to just be a passive onlooker. I do what I can whenever I can.

The Greens in Australia had a flush of success at the last Federal elections but I must admit I expected many more votes to be cast their way than actually were given the broken promises on climate change of the then government and their obvious sell out to the vested interests on that and in many other ways.

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By ardee, January 25, 2011 at 7:01 am Link to this comment

MarthaA, January 24 at 1:17 pm

Do you really,truly believe that bullshite rants like this one, accusations so insanely inaccurate given the body of my posts here, bring you any credibility? You are already an object of ridicule here with your obvious dual personality posts, ones so similar as to be either from Siamese twins or a conflicted personality.

I wonder what you hope to achieve here when you are already ignored by the majority here? You have posted, under the two guises, opposing opinions many times. Not at all unusual for someone who cannot even decide on a gender.

Report this

By ardee, January 25, 2011 at 6:55 am Link to this comment

Still, I don’t expect the growth will be fast enough or last long enough to prevent what I think will be a civilization-destroying finale to the environmentally and and economically insane political systems we have had in place now for over thirty years.

Kulu The future is not ours to see, forecasts of apocalyptic futures concern me not, unless they motivate. The appearance you give, hopefully inaccurate, is that you give up on third party politics because it wont succeed fast enough to make a difference.

While you do note the changes occurring in Central and South America, slowly overthrowing the influence of American imperialism for corporate profits, you seem rather pessimistic. I believe in working towards a goal, and choose to focus on small gains and signs and hints of progress. The only other way seems to lead to ennui and inaction….You gotta be part of the solution or you are part of the problem.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, January 25, 2011 at 5:02 am Link to this comment

Ardee;

Solidarity of which I posted came from another source, that I have already forgotten and misplaced, I believe it has merit but little traction. 

Slumbering and sleeping used to describe people not aware of what I find so very important and to be my absolutist facts of certainty, does seem a similar to ye old evangelicalism. 

Tao Walker, I am not sure how like minded citizens are on Turtle Island,.... but in my community I have found the same kind of divisive disagreement as appearers right here on TD or one could say:

“People…. we have problems right here in River City!”

I too have been waiting for the check in the mail for well over a year or so now! Though I feel….. name calling could be a tad more innovative than the same old limited cut and pasty bold type, with no more innovative thought behind the insults,..... than Republican sound bites on Fox Unbalanced News!

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, January 25, 2011 at 5:02 am Link to this comment

Ardee;

Solidarity of which I posted came from another source, that I have already forgotten and misplaced, I believe it had merit but little traction. 

Slumbering and sleeping used to describe people not aware of what I find so very awake and important as my absolutist facts of certainty, seems similar to evangelicalism. 

Tao Walker, I am not sure how like minded citizens are on Turtle Island,.... but in my community I have found the same kind of divisive disagreement as appearers right here on TD or one could say:

“People…. we have problems right here in River City!”

I too have been waiting for the check in the mail for well over a year or so now! Though I find the name calling could be a tad more innovative than the same old limited cut and pasty bold type, with no more innovative thought behind the insult…. than Republican sound bites on Fox Unbalanced lopsided News!

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kulu's avatar

By kulu, January 25, 2011 at 4:53 am Link to this comment

Ardee,

I know about the Greens success in Germany and I have been a Greens member and supporter in Australia for quite a few years. I was of course extremely pleased at their last Federal election results and always hope that they will continue to grow everywhere in the world. Still, I don’t expect the growth will be fast enough or last long enough to prevent what I think will be a civilization-destroying finale to the environmentally and and economically insane political systems we have had in place now for over thirty years.

The main problem on the left I think is that the people who populate it (you and I among them I guess) are not primarily interested in money and power nor generally willing to lie and cheat to obtain it. Another problem is that a lot of the right’s success is through its appeal to the fearful and ignorant - not really our bread and butter; these people.

The development that gives me most hope is really the changing politics and increased solidarity of the Latin American countries - that and the apparent weakening ability of the US to address it in the only ways they seem to know how, viz by subversion and invasion. The Middle East and Americans themselves seem to be absorbing those efforts; poor people.

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By john polifrono, January 25, 2011 at 2:32 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What, Samson?  You say Obama was “just a little behind Hillary(?)”  Hillary, until near the end of the primaries, when Wall Street and their media slaves, made it clear they preferred Obama to Hillary, was 25 points ahead of Obama.  You say, “everyone knew that Hillary was in Wall Street’s pockets,” then explain why Hillary had such a huge lead, and why she acually won the popular vote against Obama, in the primaries.  The bullshit is never ending here.  I repeat, and I’m betting few will argue with me: “all” politicians that want anything but obscurity for themselves, are owned by big money.  Why then, do you continue to pretend that Hillary was the first, corrupted in this manner?  Hillary, just as is the case with Bill, did not invent, “being owned by big money.”  What is it with Scheer, and others that insist on advancing this baloney?

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By john polifronio, January 25, 2011 at 12:21 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Obama was always a Clinton(?).”  So, Samson, are we to understand, that Clinton was the originator of the process of giving Wall Street what it demands from politicians?  Amazing.  Clinton was even more remarkable than I thought.  You’re typical of the Clinton hater.  You pretend that this or that, started with Clinton.  The very remark, “Obama pulls a Clinton” continues this idiocy.  This is comparable to calling him “slick Willie.”  People that use that moronic slur, have no “reason” for calling him slick, it just stuck with the mindless, and they continue to apply it.  Now, Scheer, hoping to destroy Clinton, by samll increments of insult, in each of a hundred pieces he’s written, where Clinton can conveniently be attacked, advances this process. Reality, though appears always to frustrate Scheer’s efforts.  Clinton continues to be the most honored and admired living politician in the world.  Furthermore, you don’t have the excuse that we haven’t had the time to look him over.  All successful politicians, low and high, are beholden to big money.  Stop the pretense.  Though you posture that it’s because of high-minded reasons, you just dislike him.  After all, the man has bested you in so many ways.

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By TAO Walker, January 24, 2011 at 9:20 pm Link to this comment

MarthA, January 25 at 12:48 am

For once the distaff half of the androgynous tag-team cuts right to the ‘cheese.’

HokaHey!

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, January 24, 2011 at 7:48 pm Link to this comment

TAO Walker, January 24 at 11:12 pm,

blah.

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By TAO Walker, January 24, 2011 at 6:12 pm Link to this comment

Designated below, by the MarthA/ThomasG androgynous tag-team, as being among those here who are “right wing….PAID propagandists,” this Old Savage is still waiting for them to reveal where to go and whom to see to get the “money.”  Maybe the check is in the mail?

The nominally distaff half said recently elsewhere on this site that us surviving free wild Turtle Island Native Peoples should just shut-up and accept the at-gunpoint demand of theamericanpeople that we “share” our Land and its so-called “resources” with them.  Since we have no effective remedy for the done-deal anyhow, she insisted, because this depredation is supposed-to-be some god’s will (namely her god’s), resistance is futile.

That supremely ignorant (and divinely inspired?) claim seems to be just another reeking gaseous ‘product’ of the same “self”-serving cesspool of religiossified philosophy from which erupts onto this site the androgynous tag-team’s usual labyrinthine maunderings.  It’s not so easy to tell, however, whether they really are this pitifully ‘challenged,’ sentience-wise, or are theirownself the type of “PAID” disrupters they accuse some of us here, who call them to-account, of being.

So who really did ‘cut-the-cheese,’ after-all?

HokaHey!

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, January 24, 2011 at 8:17 am Link to this comment

ardee, January 24 at 11:44 am,

Ardee posted: “But first we must rid ourselves of those who misdirect, represent themselves as what they are not, and are only here to distract and deflect.”

MarthaA’s Answer: We do need to rid ourselves of your type of PAID truth distorters, that posts exactly what you yourself and your cohorts do on this forum, as if what you have stated isn’t what you are up to, and you are not the only one.  There are numerous PAID propagandists on Truthdig Forum whose sole purpose is to consistently argue for the purpose of stopping any kind of legitimate political discourse that would benefit the Left, which is a Nazi tactic carried over from the original Hitler administration followers to the United States:

http://www.brasschecktv.com/page/263.html

You and your cohorts are sophist money bought boiler room posters in one way or another for a Conservative Right-Wing Republican EXTREMIST PAID Mercenary type Boiler Room; therefore the binary emotional rhetoric and sophistry you put out is only that propaganda and lies to distort, confuse and stop legitimate political discourse.

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By ardee, January 24, 2011 at 6:44 am Link to this comment

MarthaA, January 23 at 3:29 pm


I stand by the truth, and re-post it.
I would remind you that, in a very early post, Thomas/Martha bragged about “bringing down” a forum that disagreed with his/her ideas and ideals. That he/she has switched from bold type to red type is about the only change in their endless efforts to prove how smart they, at the unfortunate expense of failing to prove that they actually know anything or are at all helpful to progress.

You really think your stupid characterizations of my “right wing bent” says anything about me? No, it does, however,speak volumes about you , both of your disordered personalities in fact.

Leefeller

Your call for solidarity is ,of course, the correct way to go. But first we must rid ourselves of those who misdirect, represent themselves as what they are not, and are only here to distract and deflect.

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By TAO Walker, January 24, 2011 at 12:07 am Link to this comment

ThomasG, January 24 at 12:28 am

halb halb

HokaHey!

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ThomasG's avatar

By ThomasG, January 23, 2011 at 7:28 pm Link to this comment

TAO Walker, January 23 at 11:44 pm and TAO Walker, January 24 at 12:18 am,

blah and blah.

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ThomasG's avatar

By ThomasG, January 23, 2011 at 7:18 pm Link to this comment

Lafayette, January 23 at 9:11 am,

Lafayette said: “Had we a better understanding of the philosophical underpinnings of debate, I think our students would be able to think “outside the box”, rather than swallow the educative pap that is fed them—and makes of them robots to be employed by industry and governments.” —Lafayette, January 23 at 9:11 am Truthdig ‘Obama Pulls a Clinton’

ThomasG’s Answer:  Without an education grounded in causal education, rather than savant education, education based upon understanding knowledge, rather than knowledge without understanding, I suspect that we are in for continuing a long siege of what Thoreau made reference to as “John Commons, wading web footed bog trotters” and what Ray Bradbury made reference to as “parlor families”; Thoreau did not have any luck with the understanding of debate with “John Common” and Bradbury’s character “Montag” did not have any luck with the understanding of debate by his wife “Mildred”.

If understanding and debate are desired, people must be educated with causal understanding rather than trained like monkeys with savant education to have knowledge without understanding, so that they can be used as tools that serves only the interests and benefit of their employer at the expense of their own best interest, savant education is only good for making “John Commons”, “Mildreds” and “parlor families”; pretending otherwise is foolishness.

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By TAO Walker, January 23, 2011 at 7:18 pm Link to this comment

ThomasG, January 23 at 11:46 pm

“Just talkin’ in your sleep…...”

HokaHey!

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ThomasG's avatar

By ThomasG, January 23, 2011 at 6:46 pm Link to this comment

Shenonymous, January 23 at 3:23 pm,

Shenonymous said:  “What does it mean to do all that we can to arouse, to awaken?” — Shenonymous, January 23 at 3:23 pm Truthdig Forum ‘Troy Jollimore on Markets and Morality’ 

ThomasG’s Answer:  Do those who are more awake than others have a responsibility to do what they can to rouse the sleepers from their slumber? — Or, is it morally acceptable for those who are more awake to lull those who are less awake into continued slumber in order for those who are more awake to obtain advantage, benefit, and profit from those who slumber?

When I perceive the world around me, I do not perceive efforts by those who are more awake to rouse those who are less awake from their slumber, so that those who are awake can become more awake and serve their own best interests; I perceive, with very small exception, that those who are more awake are lulling those who slumber into continued slumber, that they promote a false view of advantage in order to obtain advantage and benefit from those who slumber, and do so in the name of the American Dream and democracy, together with life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness with freedom and justice for all, as hollow subjective tropes of sophism and propaganda to promote their own false view of advantage as moral virtue, and keep the sleepers slumbering in service to their own self serving advantage.

How could it possibly be wrong for those who slumber, as they become more awake, to withdraw from those who class and culturally use and abuse them, into their own class and culture in service to their own best interests as did the Founding Fathers of the United States?

How is it possible that democracy and the American Dream with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness with freedom and justice for all can be defined as a false view of advantage that serves the best interests of others’ class and cultural advantage by socially engineering an American Populace of “wading web footed bog trotters” with their “Mildred” wives and “sleeper” children who serve the interests of others to the exclusion of their own best interests, much the same as cows, horses or sheep?

What does it mean to do all than we can to arouse, to awaken; it means that to the degree that we are awake that we should make a legitimate effort to rouse others out of their slumber to the same degree that we are awake, rather than to use our wakefulness as a class and cultural weapon to perpetuate slumber and a false view of advantage for our own economic and political benefit at the expense of others.

To the extent that a greater part of society is awake, benefit to society as a whole will increase, and to the extent that the lesser part of society is awake, benefit flows to the few at the expense of the many, in much the same way that cows and sheep are affected. 

Humankind are not cows and sheep and should not be encouraged, for the benefit of others by their slumber, to function as cows and sheep, as “wading web footed bog trotters”, “Mildreds” and “parlor families” seeking the American Dream with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness with freedom and justice for others at the expense of their own best interests.

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By TAO Walker, January 23, 2011 at 6:44 pm Link to this comment

ThomasG, January 23 at 5:10

Now if “ThomasG” will just be good enough to let this Old Indian know who to see for all this “paid rightwing”-ery….and will he please put it in plain words.  All that jargon is no-doubt impressive to the undergrads at those all-night bull-sessions, but it’s way above this Old Savage’s “pay”-grade.

Beyond that, the androgynous tag-team does seem to be, as someone noted below, lots more interested in what their AC/DC “self” has to say (in their apparently “private” language) to the rest of us, than in anything else.

HokaHey!

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By samosamo, January 23, 2011 at 1:09 pm Link to this comment

****************


Certainly a fact o can’t escape is the awful appointments he has
made and continues to make. It seems like his way of slinging
shit(not mud) in the people’s face for electing him. No doubt a
type of just as awful arrogance that borders on the thrill he gets
by treating americans like a banana republic dictator would get
suppressing his subjects. But in this case o is just gleefully doing
what those cowards hiding behind the curtain want him to do.
He is just another w or clinton dressed as a mulatto.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, January 23, 2011 at 11:45 am Link to this comment

Getting the insults off ones chest must be exciting and seems conclusive to the bonding process, I find singing old sailor ditty’s works very well for me!

When I want to ignore someone, I usually carry a large sign announcing the fact over my head.

You know, I believe this political bonding process is going quite well, don’t you?

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, January 23, 2011 at 11:06 am Link to this comment

Aside from the more than occasional name calling and insults, I think it is going quite well; don’t you?

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, January 23, 2011 at 10:29 am Link to this comment

ardee, January 23 at 12:44 pm,

When will you ever understand that Truthdig is NOT a Conservative Right-Wing Forum posing as a liberal forum?

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By ardee, January 23, 2011 at 7:44 am Link to this comment

RayLan,

If you will allow a suggestion, I offer that discourse with the single entity with two names both encourages their dementia and has the effect of increasing their numbers of postings.

I would remind you that, in a very early post, Thomas/Martha bragged about “bringing down” a forum that disagreed with his/her ideas and ideals. That he/she has switched from bold type to red type is about the only change in their endless efforts to prove how smart they, at the unfortunate expense of failimng to prove that they actually know anything or are at all helpful to progress.

I suggest, politely, that ignoring them is the fastest way to make them go away.

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By ardee, January 23, 2011 at 7:37 am Link to this comment

kulu, January 23 at 9:16 am

Does the rest of the world include Germany? The Greens there get much support and, at one time , held a top post in German government.

As to Australia, nine seats in the Senate and one in the House seems a bit more than you claim it to be. Further, there are Green Parties all over the world now and they make inroads in most places , more in every election.

I think you post in knee jerk fashion rather than from any real knowledge. Here is a somewhat sketchy but informative way to educate yourself:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_party

I do not deny that building the Green party is a slow process. Every nations political parties seek to protect themselves and new parties face a long and uphill road to winning national office. It is never more true than here in the USA, yet, in each election cycle, Greens gain more ballot access, more local and state offices.

Why you are critical of the Green Party is unknown to me but you should really consider what alternatives are available to you. Further, criticisms generally carry more weight when they are actually accurate and informative.

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kulu's avatar

By kulu, January 23, 2011 at 4:16 am Link to this comment

Ardee,

Why is it that in the US, here in Australia and in the rest of the developed world the Green parties can get no more that a small share of the vote. Surely the citizenry must know that the mainstream parties sold out to big business years ago and it matters not which one of them ends up “governing” at any one time

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Lafayette's avatar

By Lafayette, January 23, 2011 at 4:11 am Link to this comment

FUNDAMENTAL NATURE

TG: Causal Education is NOT about philosophy, but causal education is defined by philosophy.

The above seems self-contradicting, TG.

Philosophy is the study of the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality, and existence. The hard part of the same study is called science. Key words: “fundamental nature”.

Philosophy deals with thoughts, notions, ideas that explain causality. The sun rises and is essential to life on this planet - that is philosophical causality. The how and why the sun accomplishes that feat is called science.

I am familiar with David Hume as a philosopher, but stop referring me elsewhere. Make your own arguments. Referential remarks are never a good substitute for logic and reasoning in a good debate.

AS REGARDS EDUCATION

Wrote education is learning Reading, ‘righting and “rithmatic, which is fine at a basic level. What our children should learn from Hume is, first, his natural talent for skepticism. Or, “Doubt everything” according to Karl Marx.

Because everything is indeed worth doubt, which thus sparks debate (if employed properly) and debate helps us to understand why we believe what we believe.

We have become a stupid nation because of modern television. There is no reasoned debate, just propaganda-slanging from both the Right and the Left. And I wonder if Debate Societies are all that popular in present-day secondary school education.

I see a good many references to Debate Societies at the university level, but why not the secondary-school level?

MY POINT

Had we a better understanding of the philosophical underpinnings of debate, I think our students would be able to think “outside the box”, rather than swallow the educative pap that is fed them—and makes of them robots to be employed by industry and governments.

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By ThomasG, January 23, 2011 at 12:10 am Link to this comment

TAO Walker, January 23 at 3:33 am,

I agree that you have CONfirmed that you have nothing to say that is worthy of response.

There are many on the internet that are portraying a false view of advantage to others with one type of sophist propaganda or another as paid lackeys, and apparently you are just one more unworthy lackey in the Right-Wing Echo Chamber trying to promote subjective propaganda as an alternative to objective reality.

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By TAO Walker, January 22, 2011 at 10:33 pm Link to this comment

ThomasG, January 23 at 1:24 am

Suspicions CONfirmed!

HokaHey!

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By Marc Schlee, January 22, 2011 at 10:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

SmoovB and Slick Willie are stealth Republicans.

FREE AMERICA

REVOLUTIONARY (DIRECT) DEMOCRACY

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By ThomasG, January 22, 2011 at 8:24 pm Link to this comment

TAO Walker, January 22 at 11:47 pm,

You have made a propagandistic proclamation in CONdemnation of MarthaA and ThomasG in support of subjective framing, the meaning of which is unworthy of further response.

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By TAO Walker, January 22, 2011 at 6:47 pm Link to this comment

The androgynous tag-team “MarthaA/ThomasG” again seems determined to drive the conversion here up another one of their philosophical blind-alleys….to its inevitable DEAD END?  There’s no need to complicate “education” with all the tail-chasing and labyrinthine silliness of intellectual-ized ideology and its inevitable institutional enforcement apparatus.

Preparing its Young for the Life of their Kind, within the Living Arrangement of our Mother Earth, is a Natural Organic Function of every People, Wingeds and Swimmers and Four-leggeds and Standing and so-on, who belong to the Family She has birthed, coming-together in that Certain Way with Father Sun….to ‘flesh-out’ His Vision.  It’s ALL Biology, and accessible naturally to All-concerned by-means-of their natural capacities, and in accordance with the place of each Kind within the Harmony and Balance of the Song ‘n’ Dance of Life Herownself.  So its only to be expected that the make-believe CONceits of the “civilization” disease fever-dream not only add nothing worthwhile to The Mix, they are ‘agents’ of its disintegration.

The “ThomasG/MarthaA” tag-team is of course ‘free’ to push their own CONceptual system here.  There are several other such CONstructs whose advocates also use cyber-space to introduce and advance their agenda.  Neither is the tag-team alone in trying to CONfine the terms of engagement to their own specific abstractions-of-choice….perhaps intentionally to distract us from looking together to the sentient and sensible qualities of what the Ancients call “the plain truth of Nature”?

Didn’t John Lennon caution us All about getting sucked-into “Mind Games”?

HokaHey!

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By ThomasG, January 22, 2011 at 6:20 pm Link to this comment

RayLan, January 22 at 8:20 pm,

What is your point?  I accept what Hume said with regard to the vivacity of the impulse

One can argue over an external medium in the absence of an internal medium, the human body, as a subjective matter until Hell freezes over, and be no further in the end as was the case in the beginning; but on a practical basis, if one accepts what Hume said about the vivacity of the impulse being the difference between subjective and objective reality, when the hand sledge, the hammer, drops upon your foot the vivacity of the impulse within the internal medium of your body will be greater or lesser, and a causal connection can be drawn between vivacity of thought and the vivacity of causation of the hand sledge, the hammer, coming down upon your foot.

If you are telling me that you cannot determine a difference between the vivacity of the impulse of thought and the vivacity of the impulse of the causation of a hammer, a hand sledge, coming down upon your foot within the internal medium of your body, I am dubious of the veracity of your claim.

In human existence the only proof we have of objective reality and its causal nature is the strength of the vivacity of the causal nature of objective existence and the weakness of the vivacity of the causal nature of subjective reality within the internal medium of the human body.

As I have already said, use the hand sledge, the hammer, liberally in the way that I have prescribed to you and you will provide your own proof first hand, rather than trying to find proof in subjective argumentation and pedantic parsing of what others have or have not said relative to an external medium.

Do the experiment that I have suggested to you and let me know what the result is.  I will be very surprised if when the hand sledge, the hammer, connects with your foot, the vivacity of the impulse within the internal medium of your body does not provide you with objective proof of causation.

What I am telling you is to determine internal causation and the medium of internal perception of causation, and work outward before concerning yourself with external causation based upon an external medium.

I eagerly await the result of your experiment with the internal effects of causation.

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By RayLan, January 22, 2011 at 3:20 pm Link to this comment

ThomasG
I don’t know who you think is the lackey that is subjective but Hume himself has discounted the talk of ‘powers’ or ‘necessary connection’ (causality)

When we look about us towards external objects, and consider the operation of causes, we are never able, in a single instance, to discover any power or necessary connexion; any quality, which binds the effect to the cause, and renders the one an infallible consequence of the other. There is required a medium, which may enable the mind to draw such an inference, if indeed it be drawn by reasoning and argument. What that medium is, I must confess, passes my comprehension; and it is incumbent on those to produce it, who assert that it really exists, and is the origin of all our conclusions concerning matter of fact. This question I propose as much for the sake of information, as with an intention of raising difficulties. I cannot find, I cannot imagine any such reasoning. But I keep my mind still open to instruction, if any one will vouchsafe to bestow it upon me. (David Hume, 1737)

It is your politicization of Hume which is subjective. But then according to Hume certain objective knowledge is next to impossible - that is the skeptical claim.

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By ThomasG, January 22, 2011 at 12:57 pm Link to this comment

Eric Brooks, January 21 at 7:44 pm,

Right-Wingers being a 10% Class and Cultural minority cannot hold and wield political power without benefiting from their own spreading of their own self serving political agenda as a false view of advantage and benefit to both the American Populace as a 70% Class and Cultural Majority and the American Middle Class as a 20% Class and Cultural minority; this is done by the use of lackeys seeded into dialogue on the internet that the Right-Wing Aristocracy pays to represent a false view of the Right-Wing self serving agenda as one of both advantage and benefit to both the American Populace and the American Middle Class.

The American Populace as a 70% Class and Cultural Majority Population of the United States must develop and represent its own independent political agenda for the making and enforcing of legislated law and order and the political representation of that agenda, and cease to be dependent upon belief that Classes and Cultures that are NOT their own will serve their best interests of advantage and benefit; a Class and Culture that is sovereign will represent its own Class and Cultural Agenda and a Class and Culture that is dependent upon another Class and Culture will be represented as a class and cultural dependent.

It is time for the American Populace as a 70% Class and Cultural Majority Population of the United States to grow up and take custody of their own Class and Cultural Sovereignty and reject having their political advantage and benefit as a Class and Culture represented by the Classes and Cultures of the American Aristocracy and American Middle Class as dependents, as class and cultural children that cannot take care of themselves with regard to political representation and the making and enforcing of their own legislated law and order that represents the best interest of the American Populace as a Class and Culture.

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By ThomasG, January 22, 2011 at 12:48 pm Link to this comment

RayLan, January 22 at 5:18 pm,

I have read Hume and I value what Hume had to say, not what some subjective lackey had to say to try to redefine what Hume said.

I stand by my January 22 at 4:50 pm post to you on the subject of causation and strongly suggest that you perform the experiment I suggested; it will get you in touch with the cause and effect of objective reality in a way that subjective thought cannot do.

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By ThomasG, January 22, 2011 at 12:20 pm Link to this comment

the worm, January 21 at 2:28 am,

My January 22 at 4:50 pm post to RayLan that makes reference to a worm is in no way pointed at the worm; from your post I do not perceive the worm to be in any way comparable to a worm made reference to in my January 22 at 4:50 pm post to RayLan.

Perhaps you will be interested in the following link about the Bush-Nazi Connection:

http://www.brasschecktv.com/page/263.html

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By RayLan, January 22, 2011 at 12:18 pm Link to this comment

Thomas G
Your childish ad hominem is noted - and I will not diginify your insults with a repartee but Hume’s contribution to philosophy was not his skepticism about the reality of causation. I’ve recently taken a course in skepticism and studied the Treatise in depth. I repeat Hume did not consider causation to have any valid basis in experience.

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By ThomasG, January 22, 2011 at 11:50 am Link to this comment

RayLan,

You apparently have all of the understanding of Hume that is the lot of a worm, and it would be impossible for me to dialogue with a worm.

When we talk about “subjective reality and “objective reality”, the difference is vivacity of the impulse; as I have told others who have had difficulty with the concept, you should first think about hitting your foot with a hammer, that is “subjective reality”, and second you should with all of your strength hit your foot with the hammer; what you will feel is the cause and effect of “objective reality”.

After you have completed the task, I am relatively certain that you will agree with Hume, that the difference in “subjective reality” and the cause and effect of “objective reality” is the vivacity of the impulse.

I do not expect a worm to be able to comprehend what I have said, because it is not within a worm to do so; I have answered your post in response to others who are not worms and may have ability to comprehend past the capability of a worm.

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By Marc Schlee, January 22, 2011 at 3:05 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It’s all kayfabe.

FREE AMERICA

REVOLUTIONARY (DIRECT) DEMOCRACY

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By RayLan, January 21, 2011 at 7:03 pm Link to this comment

Thomas G
“Causal Education is NOT about philosophy, but causal education is defined by the parameters of philosophy, in particular by David Hume in “A Treatise of Human Nature”.”
Well if it is based on the Treatise then there is no basis for it - as causal education, since Hume argues that there is nothing in the mind that did not come first through the senses - and he argues somewhat consistently from his false premise that causality can never be such and ‘idea’ and is therefore just a habit of thought - a kind of superstition.
This of course is preposterous as is Hume’s skepticism. It concerns me that Hume is invoked in a ‘causal’ program of education which is contradicted by his philosophy. It speaks poorly of the education claim of the program.

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By REDHORSE, January 21, 2011 at 5:37 pm Link to this comment

Education points the way but it cannot ensure Consciousness and the Experience of Meaning within the Individual. The principals of Western Democratic thought and Christianity have been abandoned, its Living Myth has died, and as a result the Culture is in collapse. Myth informs the transcendent fact that provides Cultural Life and Meaning and we no longer have the Ritual Principals to contain it. The anti-human meaningless Soul killing manufactured Materialist Culture that surrounds us can offer goods and comfort but not Life itself. The reason no “leaders” are appearing, and for all the rage and vitrol no action for change occurs, is because we are in freefall. TAOWALKER is suggesting the baby steps necessary to find atonement (at-one-ment).

    The problem and nature of EVIL can only be solved by community. In the same way that knowledge is not insight and wisdom, houses “made out of ticky tacky” that “all look the same” don’t necessarily represent home and community. To knowingly LIE, CHEAT, TORTURE, MURDER and STEAL is EVIL. We’re all infected.

    Washington has become “Theatre”. Could the abcence of Human Moral Reason be any more “in your face” than it is? Do the men on each side of Obama look like Statesmen to you? Get out of the sewer!! It’s O.K. to save yourself.

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By ThomasG, January 21, 2011 at 4:24 pm Link to this comment

Lafayette, January 21 at 7:04 pm,

Causal Education is NOT about philosophy, but causal education is defined by the parameters of philosophy, in particular by David Hume in “A Treatise of Human Nature”.

If you do not want to wade through Hume’s “A Treatise of Human Nature”, I suggest that you read MarthaA’s January 21, 2011 6:29pm post on this same thread, ‘Obama Pulls a Clinton’.  MarthaA has a good grasp of what the parameters are that constitute causal understanding and causal education is education that enables causal understanding.  Also, the excerpt that I posted to you from Ray Bradbury’s “Fahrenheit 451” gives a fairly good explanation of the purpose and intent of both savant and causal education and understanding.

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By RayLan, January 21, 2011 at 3:36 pm Link to this comment

Causal Education begs the philosophical question about the nature and metaphysical validity of causality- (See Hume).
Science manages to steer clear of such claims in its description of natural phenomena and their invariants. It looks, however, like we are biologically hard-wired not only for causal thinking but mathematical thinking. That fact argues for some sort of metaphysical foundation. I never understood Hume.

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By Eric Brooks, January 21, 2011 at 2:44 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Robert, what gives…? Obama and Clinton didn’t appoint Wall Street executives to run their administrations -after- bad mid term elections, they did so -immediately- when they were sworn into office in the first place!

This is so typical of your reporting, to peel off the first layer of the onion of a radical analysis, but then go no deeper and instead offer only surface criticisms of neo-liberalism without dealing it a more accurate and scathing critique.

We need to stop apologizing for the Democrats and really go after them with a deep radical and total deconstruction, which reveals that they are equally (if not more) corrupted by corporate influence as are the Republicans, or the sorry state of this country’s politics will never change.

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By Lafayette, January 21, 2011 at 2:04 pm Link to this comment

SAVOIR-FAIRE AND SAVANTS

TG: Savant Education is knowledge taught without understanding; education that teaches only how a thing is done.  Savant Education teaches the individual to be a human tool that can be used by others for the benefit of others.

This is tantamount (in my mind) to vocational education, which teaches “Savoir-faire” (know-how).

Causal Education teaches the individual to have and use independent thought to guide his/her way with causal understanding in pursuit of a causal outcome.

Well, the WikiP article says this:

… people have attempted to argue that small improvements in education can have large returns in such areas as health, wealth and well-being. For example, in Kerala, India in the 1950s, increases in women’s health were correlated with increases in female literacy rates. In Iran, increased primary education was correlated with increased farming efficiencies and income. In both cases some researchers have concluded these correlations as representing an underlying causal relationship: education causes socio-economic benefits.

If such is Causal Education, then I can relate to the above because I do feel, instinctively, that knowledge obtained by education does determine professional (read economic) outcomes.

Usually, the smarter one is, the further they get. (Aside from the fact that luck does enter in to the equation for success.)

Here in the United States we have a Savant Education System that teaches the American Populace to be tools, rather than to use independent thought in a causal way.

An American professor at the Sorbonne exclaimed recently (in the French press) his amazement that students had to pass a test in philosophy to obtain their High School diploma.

It’s true, we do not teach students “philosophy” (i.e., the study of the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality, and existence). We may teach them how to cope (by which I mean savant education), but there is no attempt to teach them how to ask fundamental questions about their existence. And furthermore, their collective existence with others—meaning relationships.

And I am dead sure that if American students do not have a sufficient understanding of philosophy, the French are almost devoid of an understanding of pertinent “savoir-faire” (and it’s a French word!) Meaning, further, that they are not tinkerers (someone who attempts in a casual manner to repair or improve).

They are fascinated by the fact that great business empires can be started in a “garage”. Because, for them, they’d go into a garage only to find their car …

They think innovation happens by means of university research. Where, in fact, one of the words in French denoting a scientist is “savant”.  (Savant also defines anyone who is particularly adept in their profession in a trade, which I feel is more the American usage of the word.)

It’s a fascinating subject, I will admit.

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By TDoff, January 21, 2011 at 1:57 pm Link to this comment

Finally, one would think, it’s a national poll result that absolutely everyone can agree with, with no margin of error. Gallup did a nationwide survey and found that nine out of ten Americans make up 90% of the population. Well, not so fast. Not quite everyone agrees.

Lil’ Timmy’s Fed, together with the National Chamber of Commerce, and the Big Five on Wall street, have joined with Harvard and the University of Chicago to challenge the poll results. Those folks are a little slow with numbers.

‘Course, for them reality is an illusion caused when one runs out of alcohol and dope.

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By MarthaA, January 21, 2011 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment

Lafayette, January 21 at 9:03 am,

Here is a Causal Education link at Education.com:

http://www.education.com/reference/article/learning-causal-reasoning/

“A doorbell rings. A dog runs through a room. A seated man rises to his feet. A vase falls from a table and breaks. Why did the vase break? To answer this question, one must perceive and infer the causal relationships between the breaking of the vase and other events. Sometimes, the event most directly causally related to an effect is not immediately apparent (e.g., the dog hit the table), and conscious and effortful thought may be required to identify it. People routinely make such efforts because detecting causal connections among events helps them to make sense of the constantly changing flow of events. Causal reasoning enables people to find meaningful order in events that might otherwise appear random and chaotic, and causal understanding helps people to plan and predict the future. Thus, in 1980 the philosopher John Mackie described causal reasoning as “the cement of the universe.” How, then, does one decide which events are causally related? When does one engage in causal reasoning? How does the ability to think about cause—effect relations originate and develop during infancy and childhood? How can causal reasoning skills be promoted in educational settings, and does this promote learning? These questions represent important issues in research on causal reasoning.” —By Joseph P. Magliano | Bradford H. Pillow
The Gale Group

Education.com has more on Causal Education, Causal Perceptions,  Causal Reasoning, Development of Causal Perception and Causal Reasoning Skills and Teaching Causal Reasoning Skills in the 3 pages at the following link:
http://www.education.com/reference/article/learning-causal-reasoning/

This is what Causal Education is.  Claims are easily made, so it is uncertain as to whether all the schools that say they have causal education at this site actually do causal education, but this is what causal education is. 

Although, when I checked Chelsea, OK school on the Education.com list of schools in my area, they are now claiming to be a Causal Education School, but unless they have done a massive change, all their superintendent was concerned about was control, as for Causal Education, he said it was of no concern, only whether or not the school had control of the children, not anything at all to do with whether or not the students had independent thought and could exercise causal understanding as a student body to prevent a situation from occurring like what happened at Columbine School in Colorado,  and the Principle of Sequoia School in Claremore, OK said that if students can think for themselves they do not even want them there, that they are a danger to the good order of the school, their new superintendent and new principal may have taken a different approach, but that is what it was, so whether or not these schools actually do causal education is another story.  Standards set as guidelines of behavior are not the same thing as destroying independent thought.

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By ThomasG, January 21, 2011 at 12:29 pm Link to this comment

Lafayette, January 21 at 9:03 am,

Causal Education vs. Savant Education
Page 1 of 2

Causal Education is knowledge taught in the context of causality, the beginning, the end, and all points in between; knowledge taught in the context of understanding; education that teaches why as well as how. 

Savant Education is knowledge taught without understanding; education that teaches only how a thing is done.  Savant Education teaches the individual to be a human tool that can be used by others for the benefit of others.

Causal Education teaches the individual to have and use independent thought to guide his/her way with causal understanding in pursuit of a causal outcome.

Here in the United States we have a Savant Education System that teaches the American Populace to be tools, rather than to use independent thought in a causal way.

The following excerpts from Page 60 and 61 of “Fahrenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury illustrates the purpose of both Savant Education and Causal Education. 

“But she was different.  How——how did she happen?
  Beatty smiled.  “Here or there, that’s bound to occur.  Clarisse McClellan?  We’ve a record on her family.  We’ve watched them carefully.  Heredity and environment are funny things.  You can’t rid yourself of all the odd ducks in just a few years.  The home environment can undo a lot you try to do at school.  That’s why we’ve lowered the kindergarten age year after year until now we’re almost snatching them from the cradle.  We had some false alarms on the McClellans, when they lived in Chicago.  Never found a book.  Uncle had a mixed record; antisocial.  The girl?  She was a time bomb.  The family had been feeding her subconscious, I’m sure, from what I saw of her school record.  She didn’t want to know how a thing was done, but why.  That can be embarrassing.  You ask why to a lot of things and you wind up very unhappy indeed, if you keep at it.  The poor girl’s better off dead.”

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By ThomasG, January 21, 2011 at 12:21 pm Link to this comment

Lafayette, January 21 at 9:03 am,

Causal Education vs. Savant Education
Page 2 of 2

Excerpt from “Fahrenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury (cont.)

  “Yes, dead.”
  “Luckily, queer ones like her don’t happen often.
We know how to nip most of them in the bud early.  You can’t build a house without nails and wood.  If you don’t want a house built, hide the nails and wood.  If you don’t want a man unhappy politically, don’t give him two sides to a question to worry him; give him one.  Better yet, give him none.  Let him forget there is such a thing as war.  If the government is inefficient, topheavy, and tax-mad, better it be all those than that people worry over it.  Peace, Montag.  Give the people contests they win by remembering the words to more popular songs or the names of state capitals or how much corn Iowa grew last year.  Cram them full of noncombustible data, chock them so damned full of ‘facts’ they feel stuffed, but absolutely ‘brilliant’ with information.  Then they’ll feel they’re thinking, they’ll get a sense of motion without moving.  and they’ll be happy, because facts of that sort don’t change.  Don’t give them any slippery stuff like philosophy or sociology to tie thing up with.  That way lies melancholy.  Any man who can take a TV wall apart and put it back together again, and most men can, nowadays, is happier than than any man who tries to slide-rule, measure, and equate the universe, which just won’t be measured or equated without making man feel bestial and lonely.  I know, I’ve tried it; to hell with it.  So bring on your clubs and parties, your acrobats and magicians, your daredevils, jet cars, motorcycle helicopters, your sex and heroin, more of everything to do with automatic reflex.  If the drama is bad, if the film says nothing, if the play is hollow, sting me with the theremin, loudly.  I’ll think I’m responding to the play, when it’s only a tactile reaction to vibration.  But I don’t care.  I just like solid entertainment.”
  Beatty got up.  “I must be going.  Lecture’s over.  I hope I’ve clarified things.  The important thing for you to remember, Montag, is we’re the Happiness Boys, the Dixie Duo, you and I and the others.  We stand against the small tide of those who want to make everyone unhappy with conflicting theory and thought.  We have our fingers in the dike.  Hold steady.  Don’t let the torrent of melancholy and drear philosophy drown our world.  We depend on you.  I don’t think you realize how important you are, we are, to our happy world as it stands now.”“

As Ray Bradbury says in “Fahrenheit 451”, people educated with Savant Education are happy people and people educated with Causal Education are unhappy people, therefore all of the books must be burned and the intellectuals eliminated so that society will have happy people.

In this context, happy people are functional savants that are unable to engage in causal perception, thinking and reasoning.

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By Lafayette, January 21, 2011 at 4:03 am Link to this comment

BE ALL YA WANNABE

TG: Causal Education

Interesting post. I had to fish around for its contextual meaning, however.

But I found it, here in a fairly complex overview of Educational Reform (under Motivation).

Education is a recognized as a prime mover of civilization—but only since the 20th century, when public education was made a responsibility of the state. (Therein lies, I submit, one of the errors of American education—meaning “too many fingers in the pie”).

Living in France, I am familiar with a National Education System; which is no better, having its own serious faults. So, it is unsurprising that the OECD Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) shows (in its assessments) scores for American and French student aptitudes (in Reading/Maths/Science and Problem Solving) to be about the same. And highly mediocre scores as well.

Unfortunately what PISA shows us is that those more newly developed economies in the Far East show up in the Top Ten assessment scores. Is their educational system radically different? Not really.

But what is perhaps true (whom am I to decide?) that these countries show far more dedication to scholarship, meaning academic achievement (and not meaning a money grant). It seems that families in these countries see the “causal link” clearly between scholastic achievement and future personal outcomes (namely, wage-levels).

We in the Western World and particularly America once had an identical belief in the causality between the two. However, something happened over the past three or four decades that has caused us to lose focus on it.

What might be that “something”? Good question.

My guess: We became too fixated on the result and insufficiently concerned with the causal factors. In a reaction to a once-prevalent authoritarian type of education (that promoted wrote-learning), we sought to assure children that they can “be all they wanna be”, without underscoring that that result depended - in a market economy - upon their talents and ambition.

In fact, we became lax ... and so did the scholastic learning environment.

The kids today think they got it comin’ to them. Automatically. All they need do is wait for it to happen.

POST SCRIPTUM

Which is how a Wall Street Golden Boy bankster can rip-off the world and walk away with his/her megabuck-booty thinking “It’s mine, I worked hard for it!” They have no moral conscience whatsoever.

Why should they? They were never taught to have one.

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By REDHORSE, January 20, 2011 at 10:26 pm Link to this comment

It’s absolutely true that environmental cataclysm is probable and the manufactured gunpoint lie holding the peoples of the North American Continent (and elsewhere) hostage is failing beneath the weight of its own corruption. Meaningful expansion of Sacred Space for healing, cold turkey withdrawal from propagandist electronic and materialist attachments and reconnection with human moral reason allowing revaluation and redefinition of family and community offers an alternative transition to apocalyptic chaos and violence.

  Though avaricious greed has exploited the Democratic principals and ideals of the American Constitution and Bill of Rights for its own ends Anglo-Saxon, Native American, or other New World mutts would do well to think twice before dismissing their validity out of hand. It is obvious that American human moral concern shares no common ground to provide unity and voice so no leadership emerges. The “dead horse” called Washington, though dangerous, is no longer a viable political entity. Either “—We the People—” don’t care enough to act on their on behalf or the entire Nation is in Spiritual/Political/Social freefall with no bottom in sight. At the least financial/social/ethical/moral standards have been so violated an entirely new dimension now dictates American reality.

  PATRIOT10101 has as much right as anyone here to vent, post, discuss, suggest or otherwise foam at the mouth as the rest of us. My own anger and frustration offen works against me and my only suggestion to PATRIOT10101 or anyone else posting on TRUTHDIG is give yourself some room and don’t take yourself too seriously. None of us are getting out of here alive.

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By the worm, January 20, 2011 at 9:28 pm Link to this comment

To continue with any support for Obama in the Democratic Party is nuts!

It’s not just “Well, he did this and I dont like that”; it’s a pattern that reveals a
very strong anti-citizen, anti-middle class bias.

Here’s what Obama has been dong for two years:

1. Shifting private debt to the public sector (thereby freeing corporations, esp
the financial industry, but also financial arms of GM, GE, etc, and saddling the
middle class with the obligation to ‘pay it off’).

2. Watching private sector profits reach un-precedented levels (while
investment goes abroad, hiring moves abroad, and manufacturing continues to
disappear and un-employment continues).

3. Raising the defense budget 6% (so, when “cuts” come, the defense industries
will be safely sandbagged).

4. Allowing the financial industry to ‘borrow’ from the ‘public sector’ (i.e. me
and you) at 1% and buy bonds that pay 3% interest (Banks take your $1 and
make $2 off each one they ‘borrowed’ from you. But, here’s the real deal: You
gave them the $1 they ‘borrowed’, and you pay them the $2 interest they
‘earned’ on the bonds. All the money they ‘invest’ came from you – a ‘loan’ –
and all the money they make comes from you – you have to cover the interest
on the bonds).

5. Allowing the financial industry to ‘borrow’ from the ‘public sector’ (i.e. me
and you again) at 1%, to loan to me and you at 4%, 12%, 18% or more
mortgages, credit cards and other lines of credit (pocketing 3%, 11% and 17% on
your and my money – first given to them by us, then ‘paid back with interest’ by
us).

6. Giving private sector insurers a windfall: mandated customers, with a
taxpayer-paid overhead rate of 20% for ‘mandated customers’ (20% of our
premium spent on administration, CEO salaries, bonuses, sitting on Boards to
set rates and decide who’s covered, lobbying for the insurers’ benefit,
advertising and propagandizing to redefine more and more as ‘health care
service’ while delivering fewer and fewer services—- essentially, giving our tax
money to insurers to do with it what they will). *The American people wanted a
government administered plan like Medicare - for everyone. (72% - CBS/New
York Times poll June 2009)

7.  Expanding the war in Afghanistan. (64% of the American people opposed
expanding the war in Afghanistan and wanted to disentangle from Bush-era
‘War on Terror’ and ‘preventive war’ policies. Still, over 60% of Americans
oppose the war.?

8.  Keeping the six too-big-to-fail banks – now bigger than ever; keeping
deposits at risk by maintaining huge grey areas between commercial and
investment banking; not ‘punishing’ the financial industry, ie taxing it - now
even more profitable, with bonuses among the biggest ever.

9. Supporting ‘The Compromise’ – giving billionaires $10 for each $1 to an un-
or under-employed person or family (with a 15% tax rate for hedge funds; 25-
33% for lower & middle class workers)

These are not Democratic policies and should not be supported by the
Democratic Party.

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By TAO Walker, January 20, 2011 at 6:31 pm Link to this comment

Whatever some here might think of the overall view offered by “patriot10101,” he is quite right about the Natural Fact that fraud and/or willful non-performance invalidate any CONtract.  An effect of that not often considered, especially by that large random collection of make-believe “selfs” of which theamericanpeople CONsists, is the reversion to Native Peoples of all Lands here on Turtle Island once ceded by any treaty that has since been violated by the U.S. Gov’t….which is every damned one of ‘em.  Of course, any Lands simply seized and occupied by armed force have never been “owned” by americans.

So today every even quasi-“legal” impediment to the fulfillment of Wovoka’s prophetic Vision has ceased to exist.  Every trace of the angloamerican imperial abomination is even now being erased from off the ‘face’ of our Mother Earth.  Those CONvinced this just “can’t-happen-here” might, even-so, not want to bet anything they really can’t afford to lose (like the Meaning of their Person-al Life) on it.

Because something else “patriot10101” gets right is the Natural Fact that us surviving free wild Peoples are not alone in this.  The whole Living Arrangement is right now breathing together (i.e.; CONSPIRING) to bring-about THE END of the “civilization” disease process here.  The GhostDance, despite the atrocities at Wounded Knee and elsewhere, has never stopped.

Natural Persons (of whatever “ethnic background”) ORGANized as genuine Communities, are welcome to remain here….but free to take the Organic Integrity of our Natural Form and Function to wherever its healing effects might be most   needed.  Forty Days and nights of ‘fasting’ from eCONomic activity, before or after all the “weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth,” will free the erstwhile “individuals” in such Communities forever from the toils of the “civilization” disease fever-dream.

Kali’spell is coming.

HokaHey!

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By Mike, January 20, 2011 at 6:16 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

And you would too if you were them, because that’s what the American people are too lazy for real democracy. 

There are almost no facts presented or discussed in politics.  So we vote based on images, impressions and feelings.  Therefore, the TV PR campaigns that require mega bucks, and big donors, decide it. 

It’s not completely a function of money, as some rich candidates found out last year, but it’s basically true.

Blaming the politicians and parties is a waste of time; change will not happen until the people read, become informed, and insist on electing only those who provide what the people want.

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By skimohawk, January 20, 2011 at 5:41 pm Link to this comment

re Samson said: “don’t blame me”.

Okay, stop blaming me. stop blaming Scheer, or Noam, or anyone else.
The blame belongs to the culprit, in this case Barack Obama himself, who seems to have fooled most everybody.
As for myself, I realized we were in for more of the same ( Clinton crap ) when he made his first appointment- his Chief of Staff.

It would appear most everybody here’s in agreement: the guy in the White House is another duplicitious charlatan.

Okay… so let’s engage in some constructive conversation about an alternative for 2012.

Bear in mind the President is only the President,
and that no matter how angry or disenchanted the electorate is with the President, they still re-elect their Congressional and Senate incumbents nine times out of ten.

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By ThomasG, January 20, 2011 at 2:40 pm Link to this comment

It is good that the film, “American Ruling Class”:

http://www.snagfilms.com/films/title/american_ruling_class/

acknowledges the existence of the American Aristocracy, the American Middle Class, and the American Populace in the United States, that is a beginning that establishes a point of beginning on the way to class and cultural awareness and equality in the United States.

The alternate ending of the film, “American Ruling Class”, gives a solution that is contention, and contention is not a viable solution.  Instead, the alternate ending of the film, “American Ruling Class”, should have been about broadening the base of cultural development, education, understanding, and equality in the masses, so that a false view of advantage will not continue to enable class and cultural schism between a duopoly of the American Aristocracy and the American Middle Class and consign the American Populace to existence as a class and culture who are fractionalized into individual contention that have been, are, and will continue to be institutionally denied class and cultural unity and equity and class and cultural education and development by the established order of the American Aristocracy and the American Middle Class, as the existing governing duopoly that is in power and control, and that has, is, and will continue to maintain that power and control by any and all expedient means necessary.

The solution that the film, “American Ruling Class”,  should have promoted is class and cultural awareness, education,  understanding, and unity to broaden the base of class and cultural advantage for the American Populace in the making and enforcing of legislated law and order as a 70% majority population of the United States that will effect equality, and thereby effect change through broadening equality on the basis of class and cultural unity, rather than individual contention against class and cultural unity and advantage of the American Aristocracy and the American Middle Class.

The point of origin on the way to class and cultural equality between the American Aristocracy, the American Middle Class, and the American Populace is the institutional implementation of causal education in the Public School System and the elimination of savant education; the 1st Step on the way is class and cultural education that promotes class and cultural awareness and equity of benefit between the three major classes and cultures in the United States, rather than a continuance of the Propaganda of the American Dream that promotes and perpetuates a false view of advantage.

There are many steps to be taken on the way to class and cultural equality between the American Aristocracy, the American Middle Class, and the American Populace, and the work that Barbara Ehrenreich and Lewis H. Lapham have done in making the film, “American Ruling Class” acknowledges the problem; the way toward implementing a solution now needs to be advocated as effectively as “American Ruling Class” acknowledged and documented the existing class and cultural problem in the United States.

If the American Populace is forced to contend for class and cultural equality with the American Aristocracy and the American Middle Class; contention must be for class and cultural liberty, freedom, and equity against class and cultural oppression and tyranny of the established class and cultural law and order of the American Aristocracy and American Middle Class, as patriots to a cause of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness with freedom, justice, equality and equity for all of the American Populace as freedom fighters in the same manner as the Founding Fathers of the United States in a righteous cause, rather than as individuals engaged in criminal acts against the existing established class and cultural law and order of the State.

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ThomasG's avatar

By ThomasG, January 20, 2011 at 2:27 pm Link to this comment

It is good that the film, “American Ruling Class”:

http://www.snagfilms.com/films/title/american_ruling_class/

acknowledges the existence of the American Aristocracy, the American Middle Class, and the American Populace in the United States, that is a beginnining that establishes a point of beginning on the way to class and cultural awareness and equality in the United States.

The alternate ending of the film, “American Ruling Class”, gives a solution that is contention, and contention is not a viable solution.  Instead, the alternate ending of the film, “American Ruling Class”, should have been about broadening the base of cultural development education and understanding in the masses, so that a false view of advantage will not continue to enable class and cultural schism between a duopoly of the American Aristocracy and the American Middle Class and consign the American Populace as a class and culture who are fractionalized into individual contention, and will continue to be institutionally denied class and cultural unity and equity and class and cultural <i>education and development by the established order of the American Aristocracy and the American Middle Class, as the existing governing duopoly that is in power and control, and that has, is, and will continue to maintain that power and control by any and all expedient means necessary.

The solution that the film, “American Ruling Class”,  should have promoted is class and cultural awareness, education understanding and unity to broaden the base of class and cultural advantage for the American Populace in the making and enforcing of legislated law and order as a 70% majority population of the United States that will effect equality, and thereby effect change through broadening equality on the basis of class and cultural unity, rather than individual contention against class and cultural advantage of the American Aristocracy and the American Middle Class.

The point of origin on the way to class and cultural equality between the American Aristocracy, the American Middle Class, and the American Populace is the institutional implementation of causal education in the Public School System and the elimination of savant education; the 1st Step on the way is class and cultural education that promotes class and cultural awareness and equity of benefit between the three major classes and cultures in the United States, rather than a continuance of the Propaganda of the American Dream that promotes and perpetuates a false view of advantage.

There are many steps to be taken on the way to class and cultural equality between the American Aristocracy, the American Middle Class, and the American Populace, and the work that Barbara Ehrenreich and Lewis H. Lapham have done in making the film, “American Ruling Class” acknowledges the problem; the way toward implementing a solution now needs to be advocated as effectively as “American Ruling Class” acknowledged and documented the existing class and cultural problem in the United States.

If the American Populace is forced to contend for class and cultural equality with the American Aristocracy and the American Middle Class; contention must be for class and cultural liberty, freedom, and equity against class and cultural oppression and tyranny of the established class and cultural law and order of the American Aristocracy and American Middle Class, as patriots to a cause of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness with freedom, justice, equality and equity for all of the American Populace as freedom fighters in the same manner as the Founding Fathers of the United States in a righteous cause, rather than as individuals engaged in criminal acts against the existing established class and cultural law and order of the State.

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By Samson, January 20, 2011 at 1:49 pm Link to this comment

“We’ve witnessed a criminal hijacking of America’s
financial services industry and like any efficient
crime syndicate threat of extortion or actual
extortion is an accepted and time-honored tradition -
what is ‘to-big-to-fail but a direct threat.”

The sad thing is that most of the readers and pretty much all of the writers on this site voted in favor of this in the last election.

The whole left went off and voted for the candidate with all the wall street money in his accounts.  They are now getting exactly what they voted for.

Voting for the candidate with the most money is almost always a bad idea.  Voting for the candidate with the most Wall Street money is absolute idiocy.

Don’t blame me, I voted for McKinney.

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By Laws456, January 20, 2011 at 1:45 pm Link to this comment

I never thought Rick Scott, governor of Florida and barack Obama, POTUS, would ever we be on the same page when in comes to regulations. Have they been drinking the fracking fluids??? Must be, because it seems that deregulation, and loopholes for these large corporations haven’t led to any benefits for average, working class Americans. Obama is a disgrace, and this comes from someone who very much believed in him during the campaign.

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By Samson, January 20, 2011 at 1:45 pm Link to this comment

The secret that con-men know.  No one who’s been conned wants to admit that they were conned.

Obama was ALWAYS a Clinton.  The whole 2009 Dem primary battle between Hillary and Obama was a sham, a fake. 

Everyone knew Hillary was a Clinton corporate Democrat. Despite the fakery of pretending to be a ‘progressive’, the history of the Clinton years was that Corporate America got whatever it wanted ... from control of economic policy, of foreign policy to ‘riders’ to cut down old growth forests.

The question was who would be her opponent in the primaries, and Wall Street gave millions to Obama to make him the opponent.  Use google to go back and find the campaign finance stories on the FEC quarterly reports in 2007.  This is the story of the ‘wealth primary’ that picks the presidential nominees long before any mere citizens gets to caucus or vote.

Obama became the number 2 in the race because of his fund-raising numbers in 2007.  He was surprisingly only a bit behind Hillary. And if you read closely, it was Wall Street money making him the number 2.

So, there was Obama, with pockets full of Wall Street money, with no support from progressive organizations, who largely backed Hillary, with no support from Labor, who largely backed Edwards, pretending to be the ‘progressive’ alternative to Hillary.

It was all a sham.  Be like Jerry McQuire and scream “SHOW ME THE MONEY”, and you could see it from day one. Why was Wall Street supporting and funding the supposedly progressive alternative to Hillary?  They weren’t.

Hillary vs Obama.  It was never a contest. It was always a sham.  Because whoever won was going to be corporate Americas person in the white house.  Because Wall Street already owned their Sen from NY, and it owned Obama since they were the ones funding his campaign.

Obama was always a Clinton. 

This is what surprises me.  That two years later.  Two years of Wall Street bailouts and a health-care reform process where the one untouchable was corporate profits, after two years of escalating and never-ending wars, we see writers on the left just now referring to Obama ‘pulling a Clinton’ like this was something unusual.

Obama was always a Clinton.  His whole administration is stocked to the gills with old Clintonistas.

This is why the 2008 Dem primaries were a sham.  You had one Wall-Street pro-war corporate-Clinton Democrat running against another pro-war, corporate-Clinton Democrat.  Both of course pretended to be ‘progressive’, but that’s only because the party’s base would never openly support their basically Republican agendas.

The ‘progressive Obama’ of the Dem primary days was always a lie and an illusion. It was a pr campaign funded by the wall street robber barons.  Obama was always Wall Street’s man.  He’s got the deposit receipts to prove it.

But, like any con victim, the progressive Dems like Scheer refuse to admit they were conned.

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By rbrooks, January 20, 2011 at 1:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

That season of hope ended the day Barack Obama got the “Democratic” nomination. We just didn’t have confirmation until the day Obama appointed Rahm Emanuel to run the White House, and started naming usual criminals to return through the Clinton revolving door to infest his cabinet.

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By felicity, January 20, 2011 at 1:10 pm Link to this comment

Forget the recent arrival of ‘new’ financial
advisors.  The ‘old’ ones weren’t exactly working in
the interest of Main Street.  Bernanke - “a return to
Glass would not necessarily lead to stability” and
two years ago “transparency would be
counterproductive” had already wrapped it up in a
nice shiny package delivered signed and sealed to the
Street.

We’ve witnessed a criminal hijacking of America’s
financial services industry and like any efficient
crime syndicate threat of extortion or actual
extortion is an accepted and time-honored tradition -
what is ‘to-big-to-fail but a direct threat.  Sitting
politicians, and the President is a politician, are
the logical targets to be extorted.

Tom Jefferson said, “I sincerely believe that banking
establishments are more dangerous than standing
armies.”  They still are.

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By Smike, January 20, 2011 at 12:42 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

@TheHandyman

You said, “So Robert, why didn’t you listen to your friend? Even Noam Chomsky has had the courage to say he too was wrong about Ralph and his running again. Admit it, you bought the cotton candy and now you are angry that it turned out to be sugar and air.”

In all fairness, Bob actually did admit exactly that.  I remember watching an interview with him in which he talked about how he felt “suckered-in” on Obama’s scam and even compared Obama’s pathological lying to Clinton’s pathological lying.  He outright admitted that he was completely wrong about Obama.  If I had the link, then I would give it to you.  But I don’t remember him saying anything about Ralph Nader.

I think it’s cool though that Noam Chomsky changed his mind about Nader; I didn’t know that.  I remember seeing Chomsky on The Real News saying he endorsed Obama and warned against voting for third-party candidates, but now he apparently regrets that?  Cool.

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By madisolation, January 20, 2011 at 9:38 am Link to this comment

“In spite of the overall tone here on this site, according to a couple recent polls, Barack Obama has a 53% approval rating among the general public.”
Funny thing about corporate and think-tank-sponsored polls these days. They seem to get the results they want, hoping people will “follow the crowd.” All I know is, people I talk to—Republicans, Democrats, and especially Independents—do NOT approve of this president. Some would support an impeachment effort. All said they’d never vote for him again and every single person feels angry at Obama’s betrayal.
I remember when a WaPo poll concluded most people didn’t mind being spied on by George Bush. Lo and behold, later polls resulted in the exact opposite. It’s all in how the questions are framed and the sampling. This reminds me of Stephen Colbert’s question to his guests: “George Bush. Great president or greatest president?” Maybe Gallup took a cue from Stephen Colbert and framed the question that way: “Barack Obama. Approve or Highly Approve?”

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By Lafayette, January 20, 2011 at 9:33 am Link to this comment

RS: He employed the same “creating a 21st-century regulatory system” rationalization used by Clinton when he signed off on the sweeping deregulation legislation that unleashed the Wall Street greed that ended up being the biggest job-killer since the Great Depression.

Huh?

Textual quotation from the Obama article (here) - aka “The Meat of the Article”.

But creating a 21st-century regulatory system is about more than which rules to add and which rules to subtract. As the executive order I am signing makes clear, we are seeking more affordable, less intrusive means to achieve the same ends—giving careful consideration to benefits and costs. This means writing rules with more input from experts, businesses and ordinary citizens. It means using disclosure as a tool to inform consumers of their choices, rather than restricting those choices. And it means making sure the government does more of its work online, just like companies are doing.

We’re also getting rid of absurd and unnecessary paperwork requirements that waste time and money. We’re looking at the system as a whole to make sure we avoid excessive, inconsistent and redundant regulation. And finally, today I am directing federal agencies to do more to account for—and reduce—the burdens regulations may place on small businesses. Small firms drive growth and create most new jobs in this country. We need to make sure nothing stands in their way.

Our tax regulations are jungle. They do need cleaning up. But to conclude that such is tantamount to what Clinton did to the Glass-Steagal Act is pure hyperbole.

Clinton did scupper the Glass-Steagal Act, signed in 1931, directly as a result of the Great Depression and bankster behaviour that largely contributed to sparking it. Thae act separated Commercial Banking (which is risk-averse) from Investment Banking (which is risk-prone). Even, Clinton has acknowledged publicly that “perhaps” he made a mistake, albeit too late to correct the damage.

The sole purpose of allowing both types of baning to merge was to be able to employ our client accounts as the necessary collateral for borrowing funds to expand risky Investment Banking operations. Which was, essentially, a free-ride since the money did not belong to the banks but to its clients. (How the law saw this as right-and-proper, in the wake of events in September 2008, is beyond imagination.)

And if Clinton has said that he’s made a mistake publicly, one can only imagine what he said privately to Rubin and Summers who promoted the idiotic notion - in cahoots with, in fact, the Replicants when they controlled the House during Clinton’s second administration.

Will Larry Summers, back at Harvard, be teaching his students that Finance Markets are “self-correcting” and therefore “fail-safe”?

Right, Larry ...

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By louiss123, January 20, 2011 at 9:07 am Link to this comment

read redhorses comment..then read it again…adults dont wallow in fear or
complaint,,they get pissed ..briefly..then take action

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By democratz.org, January 20, 2011 at 6:10 am Link to this comment

Obama referred to himself as a Blue Dog Democrat at heart. I will vote for Senator Tom Harkin in 2012 as a write in.

In any case please consider the following. The grassroots can get progressive legislation by reading this petition.

Sign this petition at http://WWW.DEMOCRATZ.ORG if you want to get congress to enact a $10 an hour minimum wage, The Employee Free Choice act, a real prescription drug benefit for Medicare in part B, an End to 2 expensive wars, a single payer government health insurance plan, Tier 5 unemployment benefits extension and the women’s freedom of choice act into law. Post this message on facebook groups, pages and profiles. Thank you.

After you sign this petition Join the the facebook page at

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sign-this-petition-for-progressive-legislation-at-wwwdemocratzorg/181036078591739

Then you can click on a link called suggest to friends.  Select every friend you have and yes it will send it to every one of your friends you select to invite to the group which will tell them to go to this petition and sign it.

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By tedmurphy41, January 20, 2011 at 5:41 am Link to this comment

Greg Palast sums up this corruptive system, which operates under the guise of an open and fair method of running elections within America, in a very positive way, just through the title of his book: “THE BEST DEMOCRACY MONEY CAN BUY”.
It wouldn’t hurt to read it and discover this fact for yourselves.

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By skimohawk, January 20, 2011 at 4:12 am Link to this comment

TheHandyman said:
“Ralph [Nader] said something that has stuck with me as being a turning point for me in all this. He said, “it is better to vote your conscience and lose than to vote for the winner and feel betrayed!” The only thing I fear that is worse than feeling betrayed is to watch your greatest fear coming true and to feel helpless to do anything about it.”

My first presidential vote was cast for George McGovern.
Barack Obama was the first presidential candidate I voted for that won. That vote was cast with great reservation, and I greatly regret that I didn’t again write in “Mickey Mouse” or “Superman” ( as I did in a couple previous elections. )

Beats asks:
“so then who am I to vote for?”

The obvious answer is: Somebody else.

Refuse to support the two-party monopoly.

——————————————————————-

In spite of the overall tone here on this site, according to a couple recent polls, Barack Obama has a 53% approval rating among the general public.
That speaks volumes of the electorate, who are for the most part obviously delusional or simply refuse to accept reality.
While it’s fine and well for us to collectively flap our arms up and down in unison, there still remains a great big public out there easily dissuaded from engaging in a dialog about the real issues at hand with superflous arguments about crosshairs on maps, Sarah ( It’s All About Me ) Palin, and feel-good “Kumbaya” Presidential elegies for murder victims.
The same corporate powers that control the government now control as well that “mainstream” media from which an estimated 80% of the American public gets its “news”.
It is incumbent on those of us who sincerely desire something different to pass the word along to the rest.

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By MarthaA, January 20, 2011 at 3:56 am Link to this comment

de profundis clamavi, January 20 at 5:51 am,

Obama represents his constituency, which is not the American Common Populace. The myth of American exceptionalism as a thriving middle class singularity and no common populace is a lie that was perpetrated for long term destruction of the infrastructure that supports the American Common Populace deceiving the American Common Populace into relying on a huge thriving middle class singularity, but all is sophistry and propaganda that started the downward plunge with the Nixon administration for the destruction of the infrastructure and regulations set up by the Franklin Delano Roosevelt administrations.

http://readersupportednews.org/off-site-opinion-section/102-102/4659-the-myth-of-american-exceptionalism-implodes

It is not all President Obama’s fault and taking it all out on President Obama is not the solution.  Destroying President Obama will not change anything, as President Obama is doing what all Presidents have done, since the DLC and the NEW CLASS was invented, represent their own constituencies, the Middle Class and/or the Aristocracy, to the exclusion of the American Common Populace and it won’t stop with President Obama. 

With the DLC and the NEW CLASS, the American Common Populace lost representation entirely, except as subjects to the aristocracies, and will have to themselves unite the American Common Populace Class and Culture as a class and culture in need of representation, draw up an agenda for lack of representation of their class and culture and represent the American Common Populace with demands that the American Common Populace’s Class and Cultural right to representation in the making and enforcing of legislated law and order in the United States is required if they want representation; until the American Populace start representing themselves as a class and culture, there will be no need of representation of the 216 Million members of the American Common Populace by President Obama or any other president as anything other than subjects to two aristocracies, one the greater elite aristocracy and one the lesser academic NEW CLASS/DLC aristocracy.

http://readersupportednews.org/off-site-opinion-section/102-102/4659-the-myth-of-american-exceptionalism-implodes

Whining and complaining about President Obama will not restore representation of the American Common Populace in Congress, the American Common Populace will have to do it themselves,  because the American Common Populace no longer have the NEW CLASS constituency, the Middle Class, represented by the DLC and the Democratic Party,  and (believe it or not) the Republican Party has NEVER represented any member of the Middle Class or the American Common Populace; just because you, as members of the 216 Million Common Populace, support the Republican Party doesn’t mean the Republican Party represent you and because of the NEW CLASS and the DLC, the same goes for the Democratic Party.

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By Marshall, January 20, 2011 at 3:27 am Link to this comment

By patriot10101, January 19 at 10:17 pm Link to this comment

“I am armed, loaded and extremely dangerous right now; and the only weapons I
have are not carnal”

And it’s the Right that’s got the market cornered on armed wack-jobs and violent
rhetoric?  I don’t think so.

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By John P., January 20, 2011 at 2:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama has clearly identified himself as an STS (service to self) - I voted for him
and his promises. I thought that this man of color may be the one to connect
with the lower and middle class.

My niece is mulatto, we both had really been caught up in the election, truly
believing that this man will do what he says, he is not like the others. And he
did - he duped us.

Neither one of us now have any faith whatsoever in the current system. I really
had a hard time at the voting both, but I really thought, no - this man is
different, he will not play that ugly game the men before him had played. He
will not commit to the desires of greed over human empathy. But he has. He
did.

There have been many tears between my niece and I with all that has happened.
There really is no more faith or belief that any good will come to the middle and
poor class here in the U.S. from any politician.

Do not tell me to organize with others to vote. When you say that type of thing
you now stand with the criminals that are currently running the country into the
hands of the corporations. You are asking me to try again, to vote again, for another lie. You are the lie now, because for me to expect a new result would prove my psyche as crazy.

Voting now is futile against the introverted capitalism we are living in. My vote
does not count, my voice is not heard, my life does not matter to those whom I
pay my tax dollars to. I welcome any horrible tragedy that might consume us all
at this point.

I can only hope, that same fate will land upon those that have turned their
backs on the human that lives in the street, that family that lost their home,
job, etc.

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By Beats, January 20, 2011 at 2:08 am Link to this comment

“More of the same.

Obama is owned by the banks.

Simple.

Don’t vote for Democrats. Don’t vote for Republicans.

Done.”

so then who am I to vote for?

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de profundis clamavi's avatar

By de profundis clamavi, January 20, 2011 at 12:51 am Link to this comment

Obama is a two faced lying opportunist.

Help start the process of his well deserved political destruction by not watching his State of the Union address next Tuesday. Bad viewer ratings will not go unnoticed. The more evident it becomes that people have switched off, the weaker Obama will get.

If you’re worried about setting the stage for a Republican president in 2012, calm down. We’ve got a Republican president now.

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By cas, January 19, 2011 at 9:45 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

a storm is brewing…  “Now must we pray….”

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By rollzone, January 19, 2011 at 8:59 pm Link to this comment

hello. every one seems to have a grip on politics.
the only difference between today and centuries of
politicians past: are the dollar figures. the
politicians have not changed. they listen to
complaints, placate with promises they never keep,
and gloat about suckering the masses; while
themselves living the high life. i keep hearing a
billion dollars will be spent on his reelection, and
that amount of money is disposable cash from the big
players- because they believe they will profit ten to
a hundred times that amount from deals during his
tenure. they purchase a politician. we do not matter.

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By AT, January 19, 2011 at 8:55 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

if you want to vote republcan, vote for the Chamber of
Commerce, as they shuttled off candidates off the back
door.

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By gerard, January 19, 2011 at 8:39 pm Link to this comment

patriot10101:  You are getting a little bit too far out there, fella, dontcha think? What we need is time, care, patience, love and knowledge, IMO.

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By ocjim, January 19, 2011 at 8:12 pm Link to this comment

Obama is not a moderate. He is a conservative. We have not had a moderate Democrat since jimmy Carter.

The majority of Americans do not have a voice anywhere. The voices of representatives are for big corporations that get bigger and the rich.

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By Old Ed of the Delta, January 19, 2011 at 7:56 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Wow! Your Headline for this article had me very
worried. I was afraid that the Commander In Chief was
fell victim to being Monica-ized.

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By TAO Walker, January 19, 2011 at 7:35 pm Link to this comment

To cure this sickness destroying us all, our currently captive Sisters and Brothers need only come together as Natural Persons in genuine Human Community….and ‘fast’ forty days and forty nights from all eCONomic activity….no buying-and-selling of each other or the rest of us, period.

Fits on the back of a “business card,” too.

ALL TOGETHER….NOW!!!!

HokaHey!

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By Shaman Omaha, January 19, 2011 at 7:20 pm Link to this comment

The U.S. provides “medical care” for the corporations to the tune of $700 Billion when the big banks made themselves sick with greed.

“We the People” are denied medical care when we are sick.

The U.S. provides an income to the military corporations and bureaucracies that invade, maim, destroy, and ruin Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Palestine, and many more countries we’ve trashed over the last 50 years.

“We the People” are unemployed and dispossessed from our homes.

When will “We the People” cease expecting government to serve us in any way when government so clearly serves the corporations and when corporations are so clearly the enemy of “We the People”?

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, January 19, 2011 at 5:47 pm Link to this comment

paullake, January 19 at 6:59 pm,

Government regulation of big business, big corporations, big insurance and the elite is what keeps the wealth of the nation out of the hands of the greedy few, but both the Republican Party and the Democratic Party have been deregulating government ever since Nixon, which is what caused the downfall of the government and put the government 14 Trillion Dollars in debt and climbing by running the nation,  and war,  and free giveaways to the wealthy, and free tax giveaways,  all done on credit by continually raising the debt ceiling and borrowing more money; for the country not to go bankrupt, the American Common Populace will be forced to pay, as if that is OK.

It is NOT OK with the 216 Million members of the American Common Populace, but neither party care what the American Common Populace want, therefore they keep three wars going on credit, in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, and borrow to give the wealthy free money that they hoard and that they know the wealthy are going to hoard and toot NO MORE TAXES.

The whole credit scheme of cooperation between the conservatives of the Democratic Party and the Republican Party is destroying the infrastructure of the American Common Populace and if not stopped by the American Common Populace will continue to destroy the infrastructure for the whole 216 Million members of the American Common Population.

If the American Common Populace do not want the nation to be destroyed for the American Common Populace, then the 216 Million members of the American Common Populace must forget the propaganda of being the middle class and unify into the American Common Populace Class and Culture that they are, draw up an agenda and claim their rights to class and cultural representation in the making and enforcing of legislated law and order in the Congress of the United States, as there is no representation of the American Common Populace by either the Middle Class Democratic Party or the Aristocratic Republican Party.

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By REDHORSE, January 19, 2011 at 5:36 pm Link to this comment

PATRIOT10101: Take a deep breath my Brother. We hear you. We’re all angry at the situation. Don’t give your POWER away. Human reason and rational discourse is our best path forward. We all see the insanity and corruption you describe. Don’t let rage and anger compromise you. Get clear. The criminals are just that. Criminals. We still have a system that will work for us. Together we can get there.

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By REDHORSE, January 19, 2011 at 5:19 pm Link to this comment

(1) We all agree that the National discourse is manipulated and controlled. Our founding fathers were pamphleteers of the first order.

    The old saying that “if you can’t write your problem on the back of your business card you don’t understand the problem” holds water. Don’t rant. And, don’t be (as I often am) long winded. Remember Joe Friday: “Just the facts Ma’am.”

    Got a printer? Got time? Got graphics knowledge—even better.

      Leave a few at the entrances to restaurants or insertion 10 at a time into the countless “free” papers available would let you distribute a thousand a month at a cost of less than a nickel each.

    (2) Looking for a “Third Party”. Get on the “net” and explore your State. Identify like minded groups, organizations and individuals. You don’t have to be loud about it. Just show up for meetings or actvities and assess the membership. At the least it’d be educational. And remember:YOU bring a lot to the table.

    (3) Put together a fax, labels, e-mail and telephone numbers list to allow you to instantly contact your elected Political Leadership, State and National. Use it. I’m told e-mails are often dumped but a fax gets instant attention. Don’t rant. Remember Joe Friday. And remember: “The squeaky wheel gets the oil.”

    (4) Willing to work? You can easily organize a political discussion, speakers or focus group. It’ll be a growth experience.

    My personal view is that Campaign Finance Reform is most likely a more important issue than the Presidency. Still, 2012 is coming, and soon.

    The emotional struggle we’ve all experienced in dealing with our Presidents betrayal has left us wounded and confused. Accept it and ACT!! Action is the only cure for the immoral disease we know as Washington.

    We’ve entered a New Age. Revaluation of ourselves and our relationships with loved ones, community and Nation is essential. It’s time to let go of fear, resentment and hatred. You see the resource for Victory and Human Dignity every time you look in the mirror.

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By gerard, January 19, 2011 at 5:15 pm Link to this comment

If enough people can make the connection between corporate-managed government and how it benefits from secrecy and “managed” information—if enough people can uphold WikiLeaks (Manning and Assange) for pointing the way toward open public information- sharing through the use of internet technology—it will be possible to work intelligently with others to make a better world for the future.

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By TheHandyman, January 19, 2011 at 4:31 pm Link to this comment

How ironic that 3 years ago Scheer was chastising Ralph Nader for running against Obama for fear that he would cause McCain to win. McCain was certain to continue on in Bush’s path and that would have been horrible. Ralph pounded away for a year that Obama had surrounded himself with the Clintonista’s who had brought this mess down on our heads. He also pointed out that in spite of Obama’s words of HOPE and CHANGE that there was no substance, no plan, to them. Time and again he pointed out that Obama’s record showed a man who was nothing at all like the liberal the so called liberals were portraying him as being. In fact, it showed a man willing to say anything or do anything to get elected but once elected moved back to the right of center, a 1960’s Republican just as Clinton was.

So Robert, why didn’t you listen to your friend? Even Noam Chomsky has had the courage to say he too was wrong about Ralph and his running again. Admit it, you bought the cotton candy and now you are angry that it turned out to be sugar and air. I am very glad you are saying what the talking heads are not saying. They continue to find fault with Obama by making up silly and stupid stuff when there is real consequences to his policies. I heard nothing but good in the press and on the blogs about his latest appointments; however I can’t figure out why when Ralph made his predictions of a blizzard the darkening skies, the falling temperatures, the increase in wind, and the falling snow people waited until it was piled too deep to realize what he predicted was coming true, other than pure stupidity that is.

The reality is that Obama will go down as the President who presided at the collapse of the United States of America. He didn’t start it, Reagan did and the Bush’s sped up the process. But Clinton was the President who made the crucial decisions that broke the back of this country. Obama is just keeping the ship of state steered in that direction.

Ralph said something that has stuck with me as being a turning point for me in all this. He said, “it is better to vote your conscience and loose than to vote for the winner and feel betrayed!” The only thing I fear that is worse than feeling betrayed is to watch your greatest fear coming true and to feel helpless to do anything about it.

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By BobZ, January 19, 2011 at 4:19 pm Link to this comment

Our president is becoming more corporatist by the day. Chris Hedges is right.
Liberalism is dead in this country. What we have now is the right and the far right.
Our democracy has been co-opted by the banks and Wall Street. We thought we
were electing an FDR or a Teddy Roosevelt, and we got another version of Bill
Clinton. No wonder the American middle class and working class are getting
hammered 24/7 to give up the hard earned gains of the last 75 years. We have no
one to really stand up for us anymore. We have fallen victim to the worst form of
voting for the lesser of two evils. Do we vote for an intelligent man with
progressive social values but corporatist viewpoints or complete morons who
would involve us in even more wars and drain the treasury even faster?

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RayLan's avatar

By RayLan, January 19, 2011 at 3:45 pm Link to this comment

“painted by the Right as being “anti-business.”

It takes a lot of nerve for the Right to call Obama anti-business after that huge bail-out plus stimulus. Of course what they lack in ethical fairness, they make up in nerve. That’s all they have to hold on to.
Obama is so dedicated to their corporate cause, they are pact brothers.
If he is a socialist, Palin is a nuclear physicist.

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By zonadude, January 19, 2011 at 3:15 pm Link to this comment

Be fearless. It is so soothing to utter or write these words: This “Two Party” system of govt. has failed us all miserably the past 30-40 years. There is no one and nothing left to pin our hopes and dreams of equality, justice, and a world (see USA) at peace.
I’m a democratic socialist. Our ranks will swell.

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G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, January 19, 2011 at 2:14 pm Link to this comment

I suppose it is Better to rule in hell than to serve in heaven..

Lies get you elected, the truth, no where in sight..

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By Paul J. Theis, January 19, 2011 at 2:04 pm Link to this comment

I agree completely with your statement, “Obama, and the party he heads, failed to provide a progressive narrative during November’s election holding the financial elite that created this mess responsible.” But at the same time, I can hardly fault Obama for reaching out to the business community after the results of the midterm elections. After all, he has been successfully, if falsely, painted by the Right as being “anti-business.”

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By paullake, January 19, 2011 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Regulate,deregulate is of little consequence in a economic system that will always
concentrate wealth in the hands of a greedy few. An economic system that
requires the ever accelerating consumption of limited resources on a severely
compromised planet will not sustain humanity much further down the road.Our
economic moral paradigm must shift from the sanctity of profit to the sanctity of
life. It’s difficult to see our narcissistic nature making that shift in time to deflect
the catastrophic consequences coming our way. A speedy economic evolution is
our only salvation. Good luck.

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